Chapter 10 Trophies
Harry lay in the bed with the frustration and anger still burning in his eyes, fighting to not allow it to turn into tears. He wanted to use his wand to summon Marius but he didn't. He wondered what on earth he would say to him anyway, Harry's lack of knowledge when it came to his future life was becoming more of a problem. He had a whole history with Snape that had bound them together and he had no idea what it was. He could only suspect that it had been set in motion after he had broken his arm.
All he wanted was to be able to get out of bed to continue his research but he couldn't move. Tears burned his eyes after all as he suddenly remembered how gentle Snape had been with him the night before, before he had ruined it. Maybe the older Harry would have remembered to tell Snape about removing the braces but he wasn't the older Harry and it was all rather too new for him. He would have given anything for an embrace from Snape now; it had rapidly turned into his only comfort.
Harry searched the room for his wheelchair but it wasn't there, he searched the bedside cabinet for it in its miniature form but he still couldn't find it. Not for the first time Harry wondered why he could never find any pain potions lying around. He was now in Snape's bedroom and he still couldn't find any. Harry wondered how often Snape actually slept in his own bed.
Harry sniffed and wiped some tears from his face and then it happened. A spark of a thought, he was in Snape's bedroom. Maybe he never slept in it but it might well contain his personal things. It occurred to him that the opportunity might never arise again. Snape might be in a better mood later; Marius might come and take him down to his own bedroom anyway. No matter what happened Snape would be gone for hours.
Harry picked up his wand, there were a number of wardrobes in the room and a chest of drawers, they couldn't all be full of robes and underpants. He opened one of the doors and was met with shelves full of files, each one bursting with sheets of parchment. He summoned one down onto the bed and began to search through it.
He spent some hours searching through Snape's papers hoping to come across something juicy or even vaguely relevant but after three boxes had found only papers relating to potions.
After the third box Harry put it away and didn't get another. He assumed that it must be getting close to lunchtime and he really hoped that Marius would notice that he was missing and come to see him. He couldn't hope that Snape's mood would have melted by then.
Somehow this older Snape was worse than the Snape he had thought he knew, at least the Snape he knew didn't pretend to be nice to him for short periods of time, at least you knew where you stood with him. Harry laughed to himself bitterly at the thought of standing with anyone. Then he remembered the dancing from the night before and how it had almost seemed like happiness.
He was just at the point where he thought he might cry again when the door opened and Marius entered the room.
Now that Marius was there Harry found himself wishing it had been Snape.
"OK, what happened, what did you do to him? " Marius asked.
Harry's anger flared, "What have I done to him?" He snapped, "I'm the one in bed here."
Marius sighed deeply, the mark of years of limitless patience, "What happened?"
Harry decided to be fair to Snape in a way that he himself couldn't fathom, "We were dancing, he was holding me up and then he set me on my feet but I wasn't wearing the braces and I hadn't told him, he just assumed they were there." Harry explained, "I fell, hence the bed."
Marius sighed heavily, "I see, that again," He said, "Have you broken it?"
Harry swallowed hard; he hadn't thought of the lengthy consequences of his actions, "I don't know," He answered truthfully.
Marius went to the fire and ordered some food from the house elves, he gave Harry a plate of sandwiches and sat himself at his bedside with the other half. Harry wondered what Snape had told him to make Marius start accusing him.
Harry ate gratefully but what he really wanted was a pain potion. He looked at Marius who seemed to be deep in thought and he felt nervous about asking for one. Before long though Marius stood up to go and Harry knew he had no choice.
"Well, I'll be off," Marius announced, "I've still got some marking I want to catch up on before the afternoon classes."
"Do you have any pain potion?" Harry blurted out before Marius could leave the room.
Marius turned, "It's wearing off after a few hours?" He asked with a worried expression.
"I haven't had one since last night at least," Harry explained.
"He didn't give you one?" Marius asked the anger flaring in his eyes, "This is ridiculous."
Marius stormed from the room slamming the door behind him and Harry waited. After what seemed like an age Harry heard the opening and slamming shut of another door and then the voices started. He couldn't make out what they were saying but Harry could hear that it was Snape and Marius and he could tell that they were arguing.
The arguing went on for what seemed like an age and when the noise finally ceased the door to the bedroom was opened. It was Marius, Harry hadn't realised how much he had been hoping for Snape till he saw that it wasn't him.
Marius approached the bed, "You haven't broken it," He told him, "Your hip dislocated as you fell and you've torn some of the ligaments, it's going to hurt more with them being scarred already, here," Marius explained holding out a phial of pain potion for him to take.
Harry knew that he had got the information and the pain potion from Snape but evidently Snape was avoiding him now. He took the potion but he was angry with Snape for treating him so horribly.
"I see he hates me too much to come in here now? What did he tell you happened?" Harry burst out to Marius.
Marius looked shocked, "He doesn't hate you."
"Really, well I feel as if he does, why does he keep me? Am I just something to have sex with? Yes, that's it."
"You're wrong Harry," Marius tried to insist.
"That would be why he won't face me now, can't have bloody sex with me like this, can he," Harry continued turning his head away so that Marius wouldn't see the tears.
Marius sighed, "I have classes now, I'll come back later."
"Thank you Draco," Harry called after Marius as he left.
Marius froze and turned to face Harry, "Don't do that," He said firmly.
Through his misery Harry had to acknowledge that although he had made an honest mistake the result was quite interesting, Marius hadn't denied that he was Draco, merely warned Harry not to call him that.
There was no further noise from the adjoining room, Snape must have left while Marius was giving him the potion. Harry tried to fight away the misery that being separated from Snape brought, only days ago he had been trying to get round to dumping Snape and he didn't like this latest development at all. How was he ever to get back home if he got himself emotionally entangled with Snape, how would he then endure being separated from him.
Harry began to think a bit more rationally once the pain potion began to work and he resumed his search through Snape's things with the confidence that Snape would probably not return and catch him at it.
For most of the afternoon he sifted through boxes and boxes of papers and was seriously wondering if he was ever going to find anything of any interest. Harry had to wonder what he had been hoping to find though, as a spy he was hardly likely to have kept a detailed diary and left it lying around for twelve years in the back of his wardrobe. He sighed at yet another box of potions supply accounts.
In frustration Harry slammed the wardrobe door shut hard with his wand, so hard in fact that the other door swung open to reveal a row of robes and a selection of items on a shelf above them. Harry raised his wand and summoned an object off the shelf.
Of all the things he had thought he might find he was finally surprised, the first object he pulled from the shelf was a Muggle handgun. Beyond the initial surprise he had to think about why this should bother him. While he was thinking about why Snape might have a gun he reached out with his wand and took the only other item off the shelf. It was a jewellery box.
Harry could only stare in shock at the jewellery box, it was exactly like his Aunt Petunia's box and inside the jewellery was all hers too. Harry might have imagined that Snape could have taken the box for some bizarre reason but there was the matter of the gun also. Now he remembered why the gun should be bothering him, his relatives had been shot and killed and Harry knew that Snape had been in the area. It seemed too bizarre to be true though, that it had happened so long ago and so close to the time Harry remembered, Snape must have gone straight back to the Dursleys after seeing to his broken arm. Why would a man who hated him so much do that?
Harry handled the gun gently, there had to be another explanation but he had no idea what it was. He sent the gun and the jewellery back to the wardrobe and wondered whether he should continue looking or not, now it seemed that he might find out more than he wanted to know.
He'd had enough for one day, he decided, there was always tomorrow and he wasn't going anywhere fast. If Marius tried to take him back to his own rooms he would just protest that it would hurt too much. Then again, the jewellery box hadn't gone right back on the shelf even though he had pushed it with his wand, there was something else there.
He moved the jewellery box to the side and probed with his wand till he found an old box, it was the kind of box a wand would be bought in. When Harry had managed to get it onto his lap he found that the label was suggesting that it was the original box for Snape's wand but it still rattled as if it had a wand inside. Harry opened the box fully expecting to find a duplicate that Snape kept for some reason. The wand didn't match the box though, it was a perfect match for Dumbledore's wand but Harry had no way of knowing if it was definitely his or not, not instantly.
Dumbledore was dead, Snape was Headmaster and Snape had what seemed to be a trophy cupboard, artefacts collected from his kills, or maybe Harry was getting overemotional and misinterpreting the significance of the items.
Harry decided that he had definitely had enough for one day, he returned the wand to the wardrobe. As it was the pain potion was working perfectly so he decided to close his eyes for a while before it wore off again.
Harry was woken to the sound of more arguing coming from the Headmaster's other rooms, he assumed it must be Snape and Marius again. Harry's head hurt now, somehow his nap had only served to give him a headache. The arguing went on and on until Harry was both hungry and in pain again. He fervently hoped that Marius would just give up on Snape and come through to see him.
After what seemed like hours later the shouting stopped and after a few moments more Marius opened the bedroom door and entered.
He seemed subdued and very tired now and went about getting Harry a pain potion and some food without saying much.
"Can you let him be now?" Harry asked Marius, seeing that the arguing wasn't getting him anywhere and might well be encouraging Snape's stubbornness.
"Yes, if you want," Marius agreed, "Just let me know if you want to go back to your rooms, ok?"
"I'll brave it out a little longer, I don't know what it would be like if I tried to move."
Marius' words seemed rather final, as if he had given up too.
Marius ate with Harry but left as soon as he had finished, he already wasted too much of his day fighting with Snape and he needed to catch up some work. As he passed through Snape's living area Snape held out a drink to him.
"I am not going to spend the evening here pretending like nothing is the matter, you are a very silly man and I have work to do," Marius snapped making to leave.
"I feel so helpless," Snape broke down at last.
"And he thinks you hate him," Marius said as he left the Headmaster's chambers.
Harry lay listening to the silence and wished that he hadn't asked for it, the complete lack of sound was unbearable. He knew that Snape must be there, he was never anywhere else after the evening meal, but there wasn't even the gentle sound of conversation that an evening would normally have. Harry was just drifting off to sleep when the door finally opened again.
It was Snape, now that the moment had come Harry could only stare at him, he hadn't thought about what he was going to say should the man decide to visit him at last. He definitely didn't know what he was going to do now that he had found the trophies. Harry looked up at Snape and found that he looked bereft; he almost staggered forward and slumped onto his knees on the floor beside the bed. His head fell onto the mattress in a sea of black hair and his hands caught up fistfuls of blanket. His shoulders began to shake but he was silent.
Harry found himself putting a hand on his shoulder.
"I have tried everything, every single thing over the years," Snape mumbled into the bed sheets at last, "I cannot make this any better, I cannot cure you, I have failed."
Harry didn't know what to say so he waited and allowed Snape to keep talking if he wanted to.
"I should have known that he wouldn't let you go free even when he knew he was doomed and you had defeated him, I should have stopped it. If I couldn't stop that, what was the point of my being there. You could have got yourself into that mess on your own, you didn't need me standing there pretending to be one of them. Of all the things I have done, I can only think of all the things that made no difference at all with overwhelming regret."
Harry supposed that this was what Marius had meant when he wanted them to talk about the war, Harry had no idea how he was going to make it through the conversation. When he thought of things that Snape might have done, all he could think of were the Dursleys and Dumbledore, Snape might mean something else entirely.
"I tried to save Dumbledore first, I failed at that."
"You didn't fail me," Harry tried to claim.
"Oh, but I did," Snape said looking up at Harry with grief stricken eyes, "Those braces where the best I could come up with and you hate them. Your injuries are unaffected by every type of magic known to the wizarding world, apart of course from the magic that caused them."
"That wasn't your fault."
"But you hate your miserable life, I should have done something," Snape continued.
Harry wondered how he had ended up comforting Snape, "Should have, should have, I should have jumped out of the way."
"That's ridiculous Potter, it was too quick," Snape said, at least pausing from his wailing.
"So how is it your job to fix everything? I don't care about walking," Harry said while he had Snape's attention, "I don't want to be in pain and I would like it if you would be civil to me, even in public, if you want to do something start with those two."
Snape looked up at Harry, "I can make the pain go away, are you sure?" he asked.
Harry felt curious about why he should need to be asked twice but he nodded, "I am sure," He answered.
Snape still looked apprehensive as he stood up. He folded the covers back and ran his hand up beneath Harry's nightshirt. Harry lay watching Snape move, fighting with himself not to look as shy and embarrassed as he felt. He was sober and not turned on, Snape was touching him in a clinical manner, it made a surprising difference. When Snape withdrew his hand he levitated Harry slightly and eased him over onto his front. He then reached underneath his shirt and began to prod slightly in various places with his finger. Snape was very close to Harry's painful hip and he grabbed a fistful of blankets expecting that at any moment he might be prodded into intense pain. If he could have shrunk from Snape's touch he would have found it impossible not to.
The pain didn't come and Snape replaced his finger with the tip of his wand, Harry assumed he had found the right spot for whatever it was that he was doing. With one dim flash of lilac light and a sharp piercing twinge in his lower back, all the pain disappeared from his left leg. So did all the sensation.
Snape didn't turn him back over onto his back immediately and Harry had the chance to bury his head in the pillows as he quickly tried to process this latest development. He didn't know whether it was permanent or not but Harry had no feeling in his leg at all. Now he knew why Snape had asked him if he was sure.
When Snape did turn him over he gave Harry a few more pillows so that he could sit up. Pulling himself up to let Snape place the pillows behind him was even harder to manage than it had been before and he couldn't help worrying that Snape was settling him in for some lengthy bed rest.
"I want to sit in my chair," Harry blurted out as Snape turned away from him.
Snape faced Harry and sighed, "You did dislocate it you know, just because you can't feel it now..."
Harry was in no mood to be getting controlled by Snape and the man was in a reasonably pliable state of mind, "I can hardly damage it any more sitting in my chair can I?" He reasoned.
Snape's expression was soft and exhausted, he almost smiled wearily, "No, you can't as long as you stay in the chair, you do know it will be different don't you?"
Harry smiled knowing that he was getting on the move again soon, he shrugged, "Of course, but you'll tell me how won't you?"
"Yes," Snape said with an attempt at sternness, "And you will follow my instructions."
Harry nodded to show he agreed and Snape approached him again.
Snape pulled the covers back, "But first we will have something of an evening together, it is too late for new things tonight, do you agree?"
"OK," Harry said, he could see from the look in Snape's eyes that the storm had passed and he wanted to be close to him again.
Snape took a blanket from the wardrobe, draped it over Harry's legs and shrank him. Harry found himself being carried through to the living room where the whiskey and the chaise longue awaited them.