Summary: Severus is about to receive the Dementor's Kiss. Hermione has one last thing to say. Six drabbles from various POVs.
Written for the lj community grangersnape100, inspired by "Those Few Words" by Septentrion.
Witnessing these executions was by far the worst part of being Minister of Magic. In the three years Harry had held the office, the frequency had decreased, but this was a long-anticipated day.
Snape, Dumbledore's murderer, was finally being brought to justice. After numerous appeals, surprisingly from Hermione, there was no proof of extenuating circumstances.
Harry hoped that his best friend's strange obsession with the Death Eater would end today. Ron stood beside him with a large bar of chocolate. Hermione wasn't the only one who would need it; the glass wall didn't fully protect them from the Dementor's influence.
Hermione hated being trapped in a room with a Dementor. She felt cold and lonely and like she'd never be happy again; but that last feeling was different this time. She'd been near Dementors a few times since the war's end, and they'd always evoked flashes of green aimed at her.
One was Severus' disguised Stunner that saved her life. Another was taken by Neville, the brave end of a brave life.
This time, though, she was stuck in this bleakest of moments. With Severus gone, she never would be happy again. All she could do was stand beside him.
The sight of Hermione standing staunchly beside Snape mystified Ron. Wasn't her place at his side?
He thought of Ginny's loyalty to Harry. Besides loving him unwaveringly, she'd become the perfect political wife, and they were the youngest couple to ever rule Wizarding Britain. He wanted that – not the political part, he was happy with his place in the Auror ranks – but someone to stand beside him in public and welcome him home at the end of the day.
She shouldn't be in there with those monsters. Painful memories contorting her sweet face, she barely flinched as the Dementor approached.
Hermione grabbed Severus' shackled hand as the Dementor came.
He looked up, surprised; and she met his stare.
"I love you." Why had she waited to tell him?
It began with gratefulness as his Patronus warned her to flee the impending attack on her home. Her parents lived.
It became awe when, during a skirmish, a flash of green Stunned her. The Death Eaters assumed her dead.
It grew to love in the five years she'd spent defending him. Every appeal was a dead end; no one believed her.
All they had was this. He squeezed her hand.
Harry couldn't believe what he was seeing. Surely Hermione's thing about Snape was like spew, just a cause, not anything personal.
But he saw it in her eyes. Even in profile, her face was set, determined, and awfully close to that Dementor.
A glance at Ron confirmed his thought. The shell of Hermione that remained after this loss wouldn't be the woman Ron had been waiting for. They owed their best friend this.
"Stop!" Harry yelled. He blasted open the door to yell it again. "Stop!"
But the Dementor had already begun to lower its hood, bending to its prey.
Hermione held Severus' gaze steadily, even as the Dementor came to him. He released Hermione's hand, lest the Dementor gain access to her soul through him.
Then, with a bang and several shouts, two Patronuses shot toward the Dementor. With the comforting thoughts that her friends finally believed her and Severus would live, she added her otter to the dog and stag chasing the Dementor from the room. Their goal achieved, the Patronuses bowed, and the trio returned the gesture.
The next moment, Hermione was removing Severus' bonds.
He rose to his feet, brought her to himself, and kissed her.