Title: The Power of Words
Author: Lisea18
Rating: T
Characters (mentioned or present): Severus Snape, Albus Dumbledore, Remus Lupin, Sirius Black, Lucius Malfoy, Draco Malfoy, Harry Potter.
Warning: spoilers for the six books.
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.
Summary: What made Snape into the man he is now? Words. If you hate Snape, read this at your own risk.

Why shouldn't you write when you're sick? … maybe this story will answer lol (I'm suffering from a rather horrible cold)
This is my first HP fic, please Review!

The power of words

- What doesn't kill you makes you stronger -
- Common knowledge -

Have you ever thought that something you did might have changed someone's life? A word you said, a random action, something so trivial that didn't seem to have any sort of influence, did you ever think that perhaps it could have changed destiny?

He is mean to all of his students, so very mean, especially to a certain black-haired youth with an infamous scar on his forehead. He knows that the boy hates him but at the same time respects him, his knowledge, his power, and his strength. But the boy doesn't know the price he's had pay for such things, the suffering behind. Maybe he knows, but hasn't yet understood. He's too young. Although lately, it seems that he's beginning to understand. Snape is mean to give Harry the will to fight, so that he will become stronger and gain the power to surpass him and protect his friends. Yes, Snape gives Harry a purpose. Sure killing Voldemort is a purpose, but one that is very hard to achieve. Snape gives him a more attainable goal, to keep the child's spirit up.

Snape knows how his actions mould his students. He knows that he gives them the will to fight to show him that they are worth something. How he loves to see the light of determination light up in their eyes. He is creating a path of light for them because he knows exactly how mean he can be. Snape knows all the implications and all the damage his words can cause. The danger you see is in not knowing when your words are affecting people's lives.

James Potter and Sirius Black didn't know that. They created a path of darkness for him.

Snivellus. Hooked nose. Greasy hair. Ugly.

Maybe if someone had extended a hand to him, to his pathetic being, he wouldn't have followed Lucius and the Dark Lord. Maybe he would have fought destiny. But all he got were words of hatred that pushed him further into the darkness. People's actions and words always influence other people lives. The danger lies in forgetting that.

Snape doesn't want to take revenge on James and Sirius anymore. He has forgiven them but not forgotten. He still despises them. Yet, he thanks them with all his being, as he thanks his family, because even if they drove him straight to hell, they made him stronger.

Sirius had tried to kill him which only made him stronger. At a very young age Snape encountered his worst fear and nearly became a monster himself. That helped him tolerate the Dark Lord, bear the fact that he was slowly becoming a monster because he had already faced the fear.

Snape was strong to begin with, of course; otherwise he would have never survived. His tormentors had just served as a lighthouse in the middle of the storm. Because of all of his suffering Snape had to cling to his own strength. He fought tooth and nails to survive the mockeries, the beatings, the Dark lord, everything.

They made him into the man he is now and for that, he is grateful.

But, they nearly broke him…

- Love me when I least deserve it, because that is when I really need it -
-Swedish Proverb -

Albus Dumbledore is the only man Snape has ever looked up to. Not because the man is kind and powerful, but because Dumbledore knows that words can change people's lives.

Become my spy against the Dark Lord, Severus. I entrust this task to you.

Snape reveres Dumbledore because the man reached out to him. Dumbledore trusted him when Snape least deserved it but when he needed it the most. When he was on the verge of breaking, this unbelievably sweet and hopeful old man reached for him. And he took his outstretched hand. Because it was the first time someone actually bothered to fake concern for him.

Oh, Lucius had offered him a hand as well and he had taken it, to go straight to hell. Snape of course knew Lucius' true intentions. He had nonetheless accepted his hand because there was nothing else left for him. It was a deal, Snape would use the Dark Lord for his own benefit. All the deals and alliances Snape had made had been for his own benefit and not because he cared for others.

Severus accepted the Headmaster's hand and put himself in the very dangerous position of a spy. It was something usual, just a deal, giving something in exchange for something else. Snape could have said no because it was far too dangerous, but the kindness in the old man's eyes had melt some of the ice in Snape. Someone had actually bothered to show concern for him even if it was fake. He took the hand that had been offered to him.

Choices Snape regrets making? There are lots of them. But this one he will never regret because slowly he learned that Dumbledore's caring wasn't fake. That scared Snape to death. It was too unusual for him. How could he trust something as simple as that? Come on! He was a Slytherin!

Dumbledore had given Snape a helping hand without expecting something in return. He had asked him to become his spy because he knew very well that Snape would have refused his help if Dumbledore hadn't asked for something in return. Tricky old man.

Severus, if it's too hard, too dangerous, or too exhausting, you can stop. Not that I am asking you to do so, of course, but just know that you have that option.

Yes very, very tricky old damned Gryffindor! Just saying that, made him cling to his mission even more, because someone cared for him. See? Words do change people lives so easily.

Albus Dumbledore also helped create the man Snape is today. He did a good job. He lit the path for Snape, using just the right words when he needed them most. That's what Snape is trying to do with his students and with the young Potter. He's lighting the path. He's hardening their hearts in the least hurtful way. He's helping them to find their own strength and cling to it. He's forging strong minds. He knows perfectly well the power of words.

Sometimes Snape wonders if he's not being contaminated by the kindness that gushes from the old man. Merlin he's being kind? No way in hell, that would be a nightmare! He's a Slytherin. He helps the students because he needs them, that's all.

Snape is a very good liar.

- People's words can change other's destiny -
- Severus Snape -

They are here for the Werewolf. Snape couldn't save Sirius life but he's determined to save this one. He made wolfsbane potion for the man, he also betrayed his secret, but now he's here to save him.

Lupin is running trying to escape. He clenches his wand but he knows there are far too many Death Eaters chasing him. A hand catches his arm and he can't help a yelp, he's ready to curse his assailant when he sees a hooked nose. He blinks and forgets to protest as he is unceremoniously hurled inside a bar.

The customers catch their breath as they see Lupin falling on the floor and a Death Eater, still concealed with a dark cloak with the hood covering his face, dragging him by the collar. Lupin finds himself being pushed underneath a table, a tablecloth hiding him.

"Where is he? I saw you caught him!" asks a Death Eater, scanning the room.

"He fled through the window. What runs in his blood makes him damn fast."

Lupin can feel the tension, can smell the distrust in the air. He shivers.

"You sure?" asks the man, defiant.

Lupin can't help but smile has he hears a distinct snort, so much like Snape.

"No, of course not! I'm hiding him under the table! Want to check?" answers Snape, voice sardonic, while lifting one of the corners of the tablecloth.

A grunt is his only reply and the man leaves, muttering to himself. Everyone in the bar is dumbfounded. Slowly Lupin crawls out of his hiding place. He opens his mouth only to be cut by the stern voice of the already retreating man.

"If you tell anyone about this incredible Gryffindor-ish act, I swear I will make you regret the day you were born."

Remus chuckles softly, "thank you."

Snape freezes on the spot, turns toward him, catches his arm and pulls him up.

"I'm sorry he died," Snape's mumbles and immediately darts out of the bar.

Lupin shakes is head softly. He misjudged him. Sirius wouldn't believe this.

ooooooooooooooooo

When Snape utters the avada kedavra and sees Dumbledore's corpse hit the ground he wonders if anyone will ever trust him again. But he doesn't wonder if Draco was worth it. The child is his student, a person he swore to protect, someone Albus wanted to save too. Draco couldn't kill the old man because Snape is a good teacher. Snape had taught him so well that even his own father can't make the child choose the wrong path. Severus is incredibly sad and incredibly proud at the same time. Both feelings surprise him, especially the latter, because he's proud of someone's weakness.

At Dumbledore's funeral Lupin can smell the scent of Snape. Maybe he's hallucinating, yet he doubts it. "He's here to revel in his victory," would snarl Sirius. Remus Lupin, always the optimist, believes that maybe he's here to mourn the man. After all Dumbledore trusted him, he can't fathom the old wizard misplacing his trust so badly. Furthermore Snape saved is life, when he could have let him die. He will give Snape the benefit of the doubt.

Words sometimes hurt people so badly that they can end their life and sometimes they can save people's lives. Words in themselves are not dangerous; the danger is to forget their power. After all, spells can only be cast with words.

ooooooooooooooooo End ooooooooooooooooo

Hope you enjoyed!

Please Review!