Chapter fifteen everyday problems
Half an hour later the bell rang eventually and everyone was glad to be able to leave. Harry dallied behind until he felt his professor next to him. He held his arm out for Durham to take and lead him to the door where Draco would be waiting to take over.
The transfer happened silently and only when the door had closed behind his professor did Harry throw himself into Draco's arms, trembling like mad.
"Hey, what's wrong?" he murmured into Harry's mop of hair, rubbing his back soothingly.
"This girl… Granger… she…" Harry forced out, his voice wavering brokenly. "She said I was lazy."
He was trying so hard, living with his blindness coupled with his fear of foreign touch, it wasn't fair of her to accuse him of this. Squeezing his eyes shut, he buried his face deeper into the crook of Draco's neck. He wasn't going to cry. He wasn't.
Where was the brave boy from last year, he wondered. At times he surprised himself with his complete change of behaviour. He didn't know why he reacted so violently to his surroundings, but it annoyed him that he had been so sensitive recently.
Still shaking from the aftermath of his outburst, he could not believe that Hermione had upset him so much. During the last five years that she had been his friend, she had never been able to unsettle him as much as today, although she had been more forceful and harsh before.
It was as if he had known Harry's train of thought, because Draco said.
"Come on. This was your last lesson for today, wasn't it?" he asked gently, shifting his bag more securely onto his shoulder. "I'll take you to Severus."
Though it hadn't been a question really, Harry nodded against his chest in agreement and detached himself, though only so far that they could walk. Draco wrapped his arm around his shoulders and glared at everyone who even looked in their direction, so they were left alone.
A while later they arrived at Snape's office and Draco knocked softly, then entering the office without waiting for Snape to call them in.
Professor Snape rose from his chair, glaring at them for coming in uninvited and was about to shout at them when Draco shot his godfather a scathing glance to shut him up.
At first, Snape returned the glower, but then he noticed Harry's miserable state and his gaze grew worried. Draco sent him an understanding look and untangled himself from Harry to hand him over.
Snape stepped near and took him gently into his arms.
Harry let it all wash over him passively, lost in thoughts, as he was carried through a door and set upon a couch where he was pulled close to a body again. It was warm and quiet, enabling Harry to relax his tense posture.
"What happened, Draco?" Snape demanded sharply, but in a lowered tone as not to disturb Harry any further.
"Granger happened." Draco replied bitterly, while he played with Harry's left hand. He had sat down on Harry's other side, staring vacantly at the low table in front of them. He didn't see Snape's raised eyebrow, but he didn't have to, in order to know that he should explain that statement further.
"As far as I could gather, the mudblood called him lazy or some shit because he wasn't participating in Charms."
"Language, Draco!" Professor Snape scolded him.
"Well, it's true." Draco argued back, turning to look at Snape with a glare. This time, Snape didn't say anything to it, but asked instead.
"What was today's agenda in class?"
"I don't know, he didn't tell me. Ask him." He shrugged .
"We did a charm to clean glasses or windows." Harry mumbled, turning his head to the side, embarrassedly.
"Why don't you show me? You are not lazy, Laures." Snape reassured him. "I know you can do it. And if not, I'll help you."
"Yeah, there's nothing you can damage here, Laures." Draco quipped playfully.
At that, Harry 'looked' indignantly at Draco, before requesting a glass to be given to him. Then he reached out with his magic, assessing the object to clean. The residue of his magic residing in the glass was enough for him to locate it after he sat it down on the table. Next he picked up his wand and flicked it at the item while he slowly said: "Purgare vitrum".
When he was done, he waited nervously for a result.
"Not perfect, but definitely a start." Snape commented, rubbing his back reassuringly.
"Yeah, it's way better than what I managed yesterday." Draco added supportingly. When Harry didn't react to that, only nodding bashfully, an uneasy silence descended upon the three of them.
"Good. Now that this crisis is averted, I'm allowed to go back to my work, am I?" Snape inquired wryly, trying to lift the sombre mood again.
"Yes, " Harry whispered and a smile ghosted over his face, leaving him feeling much better than before. He turned to Snape and hugged him tightly, before letting go of him completely, so he could get up. A sense of gratitude washed over him and any tension left dissipated. He was calm and at peace at the moment, which made him become daring, so he leant back and cuddled into Draco's side.
It had been a trying day for Harry, with all the excitement and only slowly getting used not to see where he was going, especially at Hogwarts, which always been his home, thus meaning a lot to him. It also meant having to find a person patient enough to bear with his disability.
There were lot's of gentle souls who tried to be helpful, but most of the time, they were just the opposite in Harry's opinion. Most people didn't pay attention to the small things in everyday life, because they unconsciously sidstepped them, like a suit of armor standing in a corner.
Which is why he was quite exhausted now.
Harry, who was content to do nothing and soak up Draco's warmth, sat curled up on the couch, sleepily leaning on Draco who had snatched himself a book, as playing a pillow and doing nothing else was getting pretty boring very quickly. Or rather, he tried to read the book. Trying being the proverbial word, since Harry decided he wasn't tired enough to be silent, thus asking – in Draco's opinion - annoying questions about the chapter he was reading, because Draco was adamantly refusing to read it all out loud.
The playful banter ebbed away, though, when Harry got more tired, yawning every few minutes. Finally, Draco had enough and put the book away to bring Harry to bed. He picked him up carefully, Harry's head lolling against his chest, and not making a sound.
After removing some of his clothes, so he would be more comfortable, Draco tucked him in.
"Good night, my baby!" he said affectionately, but Harry was sleeping soundly. Only the slight huffs of his breathing were audible. Draco sat a long time on the edge of the bed watching his friend in the darkness, not even lit by moonlight, as they were in Snape's quarters in the dungeons. Wondering about his feelings for the boy and if it would scare Harry even more if he tried to form a relationship with him.
The incident of the previous day should not stay a one-time occurrence, as people still seemed to think none too highly of Professor Snape and thus wanted to get to him by upsetting his son. Laures, being as instable as he was at the moment, could not take what they said to him most of the time, so either Draco or Snape had to be called to calm him down.
Eventually, the whole school realized that apart from his blindness, Laures was an emotional wreck. They teased him mercilessy and Harry started to seek refuge in the sanctuary that Snape's quarters represented.
"I want them to stop." Harry announced one evening, but it came out more like a plea.
"Who?" Snape asked, although he already had his suspicions what Harry was talking about.
"Them." Harry said unhelpfully, waving his hand in a circle around himself.
In a corner of his mind, Harry still felt ashamed that he had fallen apart so much, but he couldn't stop his whiny behaviour. It was as if he was caught in an everlasting circle of thoughts. Thoughts about his inability to save himself from his uncle. His incapability to live with his handycap without being a burden to other people, which he was. He knew he was straining the nerves of his professor to the utmost sometimes.
He felt guilty for doing so, and he should ask for counselling to get back on his own feed after this spectacular fall. It was just, that he couldn't gather his courage to approach his professor, for if he spoke it out loud, it would make it more real, more final than it already was.
Final, that he had gone mental and needed help, or, if one would listen to the others, in a mental hospital.
"Don't worry, Harry. Eventually, everything will be all right, even though you can't believe that at the moment. Trust me, okay?"
'Trust you?' he thought. 'Last year, I would have hexed you, just for mentioning that notion, but now it's not too far off the mark anymore. I could almost trust you consciously. I already did, concerning my blindness, where I had no choice but to believe what you said.'
"Okay," Harry agreed, despite not seeing any light at the horizont in which he could believe, just as Snape had said.
"Oh, Harry. Could you be any more melodramatic?" Harry knew that Snape was only talking to him like that to get a rise, any emotion out of him at all, except for the depression into which he had slipped, slowly but unstoppable. He wondered about that sentence with a curious sense of detachment from the whole issue. As if that weren't really his own problems, but another's.
But it was true, he mused. He was depressed. Wallowing in self-pity, breaking into hysterical fits, and feeling dead tired – when he wasn't panicking – were sure signs of depression. He had read that in some magazin, when he had had to wait for his relatives some years ago.
Breaking out of his thoughts, he tried to glare at Snape for his comment, but it was difficult.
"I didn't want to tell you this, in case I had to disappoint you and your hopes, but … It cannot go on like this. You have to get a grip on yourself. This is not the end of the world. Your life will go on, even if you can never see anything again. Otherwise you could go and kill yourself now. But I know you would never do that, for Black and your parents would have died in vain to protect your life."
A smile appeared on Harry's face suddenly. It not only irritated Snape imensely, as Harry clearly wasn't taking this as seriously as he should, be was also quite confused as to why he would smile at all. It had become a rare sight this year.
"Please, come to the point, Severus." Harry stressed his first name, since he didn't want to sound presumptuous. It was strange that he could smile in a situation like this, when the mention of his godfather had always brought tears to his eyes before. This speech, however, was so typically Snape that he could do nothing but smile, even if he was talking about such a sad topic.
Harry couldn't see it, but he heard it in his voice, that Snape was now glaring at him furiously, making him feel a bit lighter that there still existed some normality.
"Right." Snape replied tersely. "As I was saying, before you so rudely interrupted me…" He paused importantly, and probably sent a meaningful look in Harry's direction. "You know that I am trying to develop a formula that will, if not cure, at least help your eyes, so you gain at least some sight back."
Harry nodded hesitantly. He didn't dare hope that Snape had already found a potion to cure his eyes. That was unrealistic, but he couldn't help but feel some hope bloom in his heart that there could be a chance for him to get his sight back.
"And I made some important progress in the last few days. Maybe I will have a test variation ready by Halloween for you to try." Snape declared proudly.
"Really?" Harry asked faintly.
"Yes!" Snape replied decisively.
"Oh God." Harry couldn't help it, but his emotions regarding that topic seemed to have been repressed, regardless of how much he had cried in the last weeks, so he burst into shuddering sobs that wrenched his whole body, whispering "Oh God!" again and again.
Snape, clearly not anticipating this reaction, got quite worried.
"Harry, what's wrong?"
Harry had to try a few times, before his shaking had subsided enough for him to get anything coherent out of his mouth.
"N-nothing. Really. I'm…I'm just so happy that there is a chance for me after all."
Strong arms wrapped around him and helped him to calm down again.
He couldn't really describe how he felt. On the one hand, he hadn't given up hope for his eyes completely yet, but on the other hand, he was so relieved that his deepest fear, never to see again, would most likely not come true. All the horrors he had envisioned that came along with being blind like playing Quidditch, walking around without outside help or even reading seemed to recede to the back of his mind again, making him ever more grateful for Snape's abilities and more aware of what a priceless gift being able to see was, which he would never again take for granted.
well, that's that. sorry for the long wait. i had to move because of
work and i just finished school and everything, but now i have more
time to write.
so hopefully there will be the next chapter within the next 2 months. if there's anyone who wants to beta this and coming chapters, please, contact me.