Disclaimer: Plead the 5th.
Answer to Fic Fest Challenge #20 by Miss Teinge
A/N: If anyone were to ever ask Jenn, a really good friend, what my constant recommendation for a scene to write in a HP fic for something intriguing, I usually shout Harry punching Snape. So, basically, I couldn't resist this lovely, tantalizing challenge.
Defeated, Yet Far From Defeated
Grinding his teeth down to the point that he would swear upon Dumbledore's lemon drops that they were nubs, Harry dragged his knuckles into the wall, aggravated beyond meaning.
How was it his fault that he wanted to escape? How! And how was it his fault that he couldn't escape by reasonable means! He wasn't a normal freakin' boy, on many levels, and he couldn't just curl up for isolation! No, no, that was frowned upon. Because isolation suggested depression! DEPRESSION! (Hiss, hiss, shame, shame!)
He was 'abby-normal' and that meant he had to go through abnormal means to get freedom, to escape! It took him weeks to discover how to do so too. WEEKS. And hell if he cared if it was ludicrous! It was his way. For once he had his own way. And by Dumbledore's compensating beard (yes, he did just say that) if he had nothing else his way, then he would HAVE THIS.
'Arrgh, said the angry pirate!'
And, AND, who was to really care if he was a bit off. Aside from himself and he sure as hell didn't care. So what if he thought it was Thursday (of last week) instead of Tuesday! Wasn't like it was hurting anyone! Wasn't like it was sending the balance of the world into a spiraling vortex of absolute chaos—it was a might bit of confusion!
Who liked Tuesdays anyway! Honestly, the day after Monday and the day before the Wednesday ('Hump Day'). Not to mention Tuesday contained the class that was the very bane of his ever-living existence. It contained Potions. (Collective shudder.) POTIONS.
Whoop-de-do! Woot-Woot! HALLELUIAH!
Honestly, only a mental case, (or a very studious Ravenclaw or bored Slytherin) would want to spend time with Professor Snape on his 'precious' time. (Maybe Dumbledore, but Harry didn't give much bravado to the other professors on such an issue.) But this 'precious' time was different. It was un-required time. It was NEWT time.
Yes, yes, NEWT—the optional class!
Well, eff you Professor, Sir, Lord, Mister, Harry friggin' Potter WANTS a future despite your 'precious' time!
Why that vile little man of greasy proportions and odorous breath! He thought it was Thursday! (Which was ANOTHER day that didn't bode well with the boy because of POTIONS—again.) How was he to know that he didn't have Potions FIRST THING instead of LAST THING!
Honestly, you damned bat! He thought it was Thursday—And did you even bother to ask why the stupid Gryffindor thought it was Thursday? No, because that'd beneath you, to the level of CARING.
"Potter!" Speak of the freakin' devil!
Reeling around, temper tittering on edge already because of that very man, it took all of Harry's control not to fish out his wand and attack the man. Stupid Headmaster and his frowning disapprovals.
"Yes. Sir?" the words spat themselves like venom.
"What exactly are you doing out so far from Gryffindor Tower so close to curfew?"
Seething, uncontrolled, thirsting for more than the petty escape he thought he had attained already, Harry clenched his fists. "Why, Professor," his voice was a deadly calm, despite his boiling inners. "I'm stalking the corridors, looking for trouble-makers, gleeful to take off points—oh wait, sorry, momentary lapse of sanity. I'm actually just walking! You're covering the other part."
Bristling, his own hand clenching and un-clenching, Snape advanced a step forward. "Of all the audacity Potter," he hissed. "Why I ought to—This is second act-up of the day! This will be taken straight to the Headmaster. You arrogant clone of a stuttering—"
In years to come it was never to be truly recollected how it happened or who acted first. All that was to be known was that once moment Severus Snape, Potions Master of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Ex-Death Eater, was advancing upon Harry Potter, Sixth Year Gryffindor, The-Boy-Who-Lived, who, like the one advancing upon him, was seething in boiling rage, and then…then, well, it was like magic didn't exist.
They were purely barbaric muggles (a thought conceived by an irate Mrs. Weasley as news reached her).
Launched into a bare-knuckled attack, punching and kicking at each other viciously, the two males dug into the very roots of their cave-man ancestors. Wrestling, punching, kneeing, blood spilling out, pain snatching all around, they laid into each other with only red vision.
Harry (now around the same height as Snape) kept his hand well in the fight, evening it out, while Snape, for his due credit, kept up his own quite well against the startling strong young man.
Slamming one another into walls, dragging each other across the stone, into edges of portraits, tripping each other onto the ground, kicking at groins, at backs of knees, fists upper cutting and smashing into guts, they brawled with a ferociousness that poured out through years of stewing loathing.
Caught off-guard momentarily by the changed direction of Snape's fist, Harry's head cracked backwards, into the floor, giving him a momentarily loss of coherency, which was taken advantage of by the man swiftly. Slammed farther down, a punch slammed into his gut, the boy forced himself back into compliance with his mind, and struggled back.
Kicking up, he knocked the man to the side, only to be dragged over too. Tripped onto his stomach, briefly, his muscles hitched as a voice whispered into his ear. "Where's your Gryffindor nobility, Potter? Fighting a Slytherin so lowly, so barbarically."
Thrusting himself upwards, adrenaline pumping him, he smashed the man backwards, into the wall, his knee smashing dangerously into the inside of Snape's thigh. "Don't you know Professor," he smashed him back harder. "I'm a Slytherin in Gryffindor clothing—nothing's below me."
Knocked backwards by the man's slipping free hand he caught the man's lunge and in a twirling loop of brief flying the two thumped to the ground once again in a dead-lock wrestling match. Knuckles scraped and bloody, robes torn, lips busted, eyes blackening, (Harry's glasses shattered but still in place, miraculously), they thrashed each other harder into the ground.
Portraits screamed at them, students (the two unlucky ones) ran away in a desperate flee of pure terror, and Hogwarts herself seemed to be writhing in anger at their recklessness.
Cracking his broken knuckles across Snape's mouth, again, Harry grabbed the advantage as he pounded his knee into the man's abdomen. "Why don't you care?" he demanded. "Why don't you care?"
Retaliating, Snape tackled him into the baseboard, breath fanning across him. "About what Potter? About you? I can hardly care for you with all those others that care for you—"
He grunted as Harry's knee, a seriously dangerous weapon, caught him in the gut, sending him reeling. Lunging forward, the two balled up into a match again, inflicting as much damage as they could with no sense of the consequences they were to receive. Rolling, over and over, hands scrambled into hair, forcing heads down hard, or yanking them up nastily.
All concept of time was lost in their blur of violence, not to mention reality. Had Voldemort waltzed by in a tango with Dumbledore (while chewing Dumbledore's beard even!) the two wouldn't've spared a glance, even if the two were blaring the 1784 Overture so loudly that the dead was rolling.
Their only sights were for each other.
Slammed head first into the wall, Harry's mouth spilt over in metallic as his gashed his teeth into his tongue. "Sing of the walls, Potter. Sing like Beowulf made Grendel sing! SING!"
Smashed in harder, head whirling, all sense faltering, he grumbled sourly out a string of profanity. "SING!" the man twisted his arm, driving his nails into the flesh of his wrist. "Sing of walls Potter."
Writhing in pain, lost in dignity, Harry sucked in his breath. "Walls, ooh Walls, they save your life but the really good news is I've saved loads of money by switching to Gieco!"
Thoroughly caught off guard, Snape slackened his grip slightly, only to be thrown backwards. Tripped painfully into the wall behind him he fought back a yowl of pain as he was tackled, roughly, to the ground. "Sing for me, Professor," Harry mocked sardonically. "Sing of 'uncle' Professor. Like my cousin made me do when he Harry Hunted. Sing of Uncle!"
Sneering into the ground, Snape curled his lips into the cruel tasting stone. "SING!" Harry pressed the palms of his hands harshly into his back, smacking him forward.
"Uncle! Uncles—help you how parents can't, you little shitling who'll never know what an Uncle is!" The two Slytherins, sharp to catching the other off-guard, were struck by an impasse they would never recognize, as Snape thumped Harry backwards through his distraction.
Fists colliding against, bodies creating a collision into walls, knees knocking vigorously, things being to fall down considerably. Snape's body, tittering from age, began to slack with less retaliation, and Harry, strung through pure exhaustion of endless nights of sleeping, landed punches that were more like soft willowed thumps.
Eventually, tripped by Harry onto his back, Snape just lay there, defeated yet far from defeated, while the boy collapsed on top of him, weakly punching his chest, defeated but far from defeated.
Falling forward, forehead on the man's slumped chest, fists on either side of him, pressed tiredly into the ground, Harry took a haggard breath. "Remember, remember, the fifth of November."
He rolled off the man, flat onto his back, and stared dully at the ceiling. Portraits muttered sourly around them, hoping severely that another Professor (a responsible one) would happen upon them soon, they even debated rather or not to go fetch one.
They were both too beaten, too exhausted to add much venom, loathing, to their voices.
"Why are you a Slytherin?"
"Can you deny it?"
"Why should I care? For what? You?" he didn't sound snide.
"Why didn't you care why I thought it was Thursday?"
"Why do you think the whole word cares about me? So much so that I'm overwhelmed? I'm just a figure to them, can't you realize that? I'm not human to them. Like walls aren't anything more than walls but yet they keep up the support of the world, do they not? Keep it from tumbling down on us. Killing us."
"Why did you mess up the days so severely?"
"I erased the dates on my calendar at first," he said, voice strained. "So I didn't have to know the date, live day by day on a fixed schedule—I know, doesn't make much sense, but still—and then I threw away the calendar. Got rid of it all. The calendar, like the prophecy, was just something that dictated my life. Wasn't going to have that."
"You knew what today was."
"You know what the fifth of November is?" A silent shake of the head. "It's when a man, a muggle, attempted to blow up the Parliament in attempt to make the country realize that their government needed to change. He's acknowledged and cherished as a holiday for what attempt. The nobility of the essence of it. Despite that it was treason."
"That's good—people should band together when they need to fight for a cause."
Silence, echoing silence, broken only by their haggard breathing. Distantly they would hear running feet, breathless gasps of people, and knew that soon they'd be found.
"You need more people to care about you Potter—you should stop shutting down to extended hands of your peers."
The footsteps were closer and the portraits were smug. "Professor," Harry ventured slowly.
"What?" there was no snap to his bite.
"I'm not sorry for this."
"Nor am I."
They were very close to being found now.
"Potter?" he sounded extremely tired.
"I'd like an Uncle—they seem nice." He lolled his head to the side to see Professor Snape having done the same thing. Their eyes connected, poring into each other, but for once there was no hatred, no ugliness, nothing but mutual consent.
"What's Gieco, Mr. Potter?"
"Dunno—I just remember seeing a commercial for it on the muggle telly over the summer." He perched an eyebrow and the boy shrugged helplessly. "I'm a Slytherin, remember?"
"I'll not forget it."
"Merlin!" Professor McGonagall, followed by two frightened Ravenclaws, rushed down the corridor toward them. "I can't believe you two! You were honestly fighting! Of all the stupid things to do! From a sixth year and a professor!" She was more than scandalized. "Both of your will suffer consequences."
Waving her wand to conjure stretchers however she began to run her mouth in a stern lecture as she levitated the two broken bodies to the Hospital Wing. If anyone cared to notice though, they would've realized that the unyielding woman wasn't being heeded, for instead the two males were drifting off into a suddenly peaceful unconsciousness.
Drawing back into the shadows, disappearing in the opposite way of the strange trio (deserted of the Ravenclaws), Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, a sly old man, hummed quietly to himself as he made toward his office.
"They've gotten rid of their anger now," he informed himself aloud and contently. "It'll be different from here on out—yes, yes, very, very different. Why, the war might end more peacefully than before."
He uttered the password and climbed the stairs. "Remember, remember the fifth of November, where one quarrel was defeated and an Uncle was not defeated."
A/N : Man, I liked doing that. I'm sick. Ah well, it was fun! Hope you liked! Please Review