Disclaimer: Samara's last song is by the Beatles, called Yesterday. The other song featured in this chapter is the Sound of Silence by Simon and Garfunkle.

Gumby

Chapter 84: Yesterday And The Silence It Left

The following days were a quick blur to Severus, passing faster than the seconds on the face of a clock, bringing Samara's departure ever closer. As he sat up in his office with his head buried in his hands, he went over the leaving ceremony that they had in the afternoon for the seventh years. Tonight she was spending her last night on the castle and would be leaving in the morning along with the rest of the seventh years and he could not sleep. He found it impossible to stop thinking about her, which in turn made tears streak down his face as he struggled to breathe.

In just a day's time, she would be leaving and in a day or two, the rest of the students would follow and shortly after, the staff would be free to go home for the holiday as well. Brushing the tears on his face away angrily, Severus banged open the drawers of his desk. Since he'd been unable to sleep for days, he had gotten an early start in packing up for the holidays, so he could get away from the castle as soon as possible. The truth was, he couldn't bear to be in the castle any longer as he could never shake off the constant feeling of her presence. He knew that she was there, somewhere in the castle and he could easily go and see her. However, when she was gone, he would forever see a ghost of her memory wandering the castle.

Digging his fingers into his eyes, he sighed as he wondered how much worse it would be back in Spinner's End. The halls of Hogwarts were of course tainted with her memories, however, now, so was Spinner's End. Pulling his hands away from his eyes, Severus reprimanded himself to get a grip seeing as he was acting like Samara were dying rather instead of just leaving school.

However, as he stared down into his drawer, he furrowed his brow as he stared at the dry, but preserved flowers that lay delicately inside. Gently, he extricated the deep red carnation with crispy petals and darker edges, before turning his gaze towards what looked like a deep golden daffodil with dark brown edges. The fact that they now looked to be Gryffindor colors completely escaped him as he thought about the flowers that he had once given Samara and wondering if she had kept them and placed these inside his desk. He couldn't think of anyone, or any reason for anyone, to have placed two pressed flowers into his desk drawer, especially with him not noticing. After all, his office was locked and warded whenever he wasn't inside and he assumed for Samara, sneaking into his office when he was not present would be quite simple.

Furrowing his brow, Severus leaned back and twirled both flowers in his long fingered hands. Staring at the twirling little beauties in his hand, he wondered why Samara would go through so much trouble of sneaking into his office to leave these in his drawers and wondered when she had done it. He assumed it had to be recent considering the fact that he wouldn't have noticed if it had been in the last week or two because he hadn't been in his office much recently as he hadn't a need to.

Focusing his attention on the carnation, he thought back to the day in the garden and what he told her it meant. My heart aches for you. Severus felt his heart ache at just the thought as he turned to the daffodil. You are the only one.

Closing his eyes, Severus wondered if it was what she felt, or if she was just reminding him of what he'd said to her. However, he thought back to the past couple days and the way that every time she looked at him, she looked at him with nothing more than pure loathing. After that night that they had almost gotten caught by Cross, he could see that she was angry with him, however, she had risked her future, just for him.

Yet, despite that testament of love that she had for him, he wondered if the past couple days she had allowed it to be consumed by her anger and hate. While had had known for quite someitme that there was more to Samara than met the eyes, that deep down inside there was darkness within her, he hadn't ever expected for it to become so predominant within her. However, since the sacking of Cross, which he had an inkling she had something to do with, he couldn't help but think that Samara had become something different. Like she lost herself and no longer knew who she was.

Rising from his chair, he made his way towards the door and out of the room, making her way down the corridors, hoping that it would be able to keep him from his thoughts and stay in control of his emotions. Sighing as the cool air of the dungeons wrapped around him as he made his way down the hall, he closed his eyes and thought about nothing, completely clearing his mind of everything. He was unafraid of running into any students considering it was quite so late.

Opening his eyes as he walked up the stairs, he stared at the flowers that he was still carrying and about that day in the gardens of Prince Manor. However, as he thought about the reason that she had taken, how angry she had been with him and the way that she lit up as soon as she saw the garden, he felt his heart clench painfully. He wondered as he continued to march through the darkened halls of the castle, lit by the moon, if there would ever come a day that he would be able to think of Samara without feeling pain. He wondered if there would ever came a day where he would be able to fondly think of her once more, without feeling pain rip through him, making him want to break down.

Sighing unhappily, he decided that for now at least, it was for the best to put her out of mind as best he could. The pain of their end was still too great and the fact that she would soon be departing didn't lessen the pain but intensify it. Closing his eyes tightly as he walked down the hall, tucking the flowers gently away, he found time slipping without his realizing. To him it felt like time was slipping by painfully slowly, yet at the same time he felt like time was going by too fast, stealing Samara away from him on swift wings. However, as an hour or two passed, just as he could sky in the far horizon begin to lighten, he found himself standing outside the Head Girls rooms without really knowing how he had gotten there.

As he stood outside, he wondered what he was doing there. However, before he could answer, he found himself walking into her rooms. It was quite strange for him to look around the empty common room, completely darkened and almost cold, already not at all as he remembered it when he curled up with Samara on her couch and the room was lit by her fireplace.

Looking around, wondering what on earth he was doing, he crossed the room and stood outside her closed door, pressing his hand to the door gently and pressing his forehead against it. Opening the door silently, he found that if he was going to look upon her one last time, it had to be now, while she was asleep. He wouldn't be able to bare seeing her off the following morning along with the rest of the seventh years. He supposed that it was really for the best to say his goodbye while she slept.

Creeping slowly into her darkened room, Severus could see that all her things were packed away in her trunk and see the small lump on her bed. The room was completely silent as he approached Samara, who was asleep with her back to the door. He could see her long black hair, fanned out behind her, like a river of black against her white pillowcase. As he approached her bed, he paused for a moment when he heard her murmur something. However, once assured that she was still asleep, he approached her bed and peered down into her face.

His eyes having adjusted to the light, he felt his heart thump at the sight of her looking so peaceful in her sleep. She had her hands clasped together and tucked beneath her face, which looked peaceful and yet there was something sorrowful about her, even as she slept and was quite far away from the troubles of the world. "Yesterday, love was such an easy game to play," he thought he heard her murmur, though it was a bit hard to distinguish. However, he did see her mouth move and he smiled as a tear welled up in his eye as he remembered the strange habit she had to sing songs in her sleep. "Now I need a place to hide..."

Bending over, thinking he couldn't take it anymore, he placed a small kiss on her forehead and turned away. "I wish I hadn't changed you, and you were as sweet as when you were still a child," he whispered, his voice breaking with the overwhelming emotion of loss he felt. Straightening up and wiping the tear that he felt on his cheek, he turned away and walked out of her room, gently closing the door behind himself as he exited her rooms, not leaving any sort of indication that he had been there to begin with. Leaving Samara to think it had all been a strange dream, but now knowing she had changed for the worse.

--

"The headmaster said you wished to see me," Severus said as he stopped inside the Muggle Studies classroom a few days later and glaring over at Charity Burbage as she straightened up. He had planned to leave early in the morning, however, when he had gone up to speak to Albus and tel him he was leaving for the holidays, he had been told that she wanted to speak to him about something.

"Yes Severus, I will be with you in a moment," Charity replied as she continued to set her classroom in order, leaving Severus to wonder why she hadn't done any of this before and why she was putting things away the Muggle way. He had a feeling that teaching Muggle Studies was going to rot away her brain as she seemed to be forgetting she was a witch and putting away all these muggle contraptions would be much simpler is she used her wand. However, as he waited for her to finish with whatever she was doing and tell him what she wanted, he suddenly realized that one of the muggle contraptions was turned on and sending music through the classroom.

Looking around the room, he soon spotted a radio in the room, connected to a pug in. The Muggle Studies classroom was the only room in the entire castle that allowed for muggle instruments to work, for the purpoe of lessons. However, the outlets didn't work and were really just there so the students would know what they were supposed to do with them. Nothing actually ran on electricity in the room.

'Hello darkness my old friend, I've come to talk with you again. Because a visions softly creeping, left its seeds while I was sleeping. And the visions that was planted in my brain, still remains, within the sound of silence,' Severus heard the lyrics sung, in a male voice. He found that the melody was quite catching and there was some mild sadness inside him, welling up at the sound of it. However, before he could dwell on it too much, he found Charity slowly turning to him, holding something in her hand. Furrowing his brow, he watched as she walked over to him with the small vial. "I think that this is yours, one of the elves in the kitchen found it and for some reason brought it to me," Charity said as she walked over to him and handed him the vial, with a small amount of black liquid at the bottom.

Taking the vial that she was handing him, he glared at her once more, wondering if this was what he was being held up for. However, being as he was already there, he took the vial from her hand and pulled the stopper off the top. Bringing the potion to his nose, he smelled it and raised a brow as he stared at it. It didn't take him long to realize what it was, nor for him to think back to the day when he had caught Samara near the kitchens and she'd said that she'd been taking a break from studying and was only taking a snack-break. Immediately, connections started to be made in his brain and he thought about how Cross' aggression had been steadily rising and suddenly it made sense to him how the entire fight with Sinistra had been orchestrated.

He had to admit, as he stared at the vial, that it had been genius, as she had completely escaped detection and notice. Even now, he was the only one to have figured it out, and he would have never know for sure had Charity not given him this vial, which to her was simply innocuous and unimportant. Looking up from the vial, he merely nodded at Charity as he turned around and walked out of the classroom, slipping the vial into his pocket and making his way down the hallway, thinking about what he now knew to be true about Samara, but thinking that it didn't change anything. He was still madly in love with her, and he knew that nothign that she did would ever change that. Even if she changed, because she would forever be the woman that had loved him for who he was. The only woman to have looked past everything he was and loved him despite it all.

As he walked through the empty and eerily silent halls of Hogwarts, Severus thought about the prevalent silence that had been left behind by the departure of all the students from Hogwarts. However, as he stepped out into the bright sunny day and made his way across the grounds, he found the ghost of Samara's memory everyone that he looked. Even as he passed the lake and thought of the last day of the previous year, when Samara had sat with him by the lake and placed a kiss on his cheek.

Placing a hand over his heart, Severus continued to make his way towards the gates of Hogwarts and hoping that over the coming months he would be able to live with the way that his heart bled for Samara. Clutching onto his robes as he crossed the gates and took one last look of the castle, he sighed at the thought that he would soon be returning for another year at Hogwarts, and that she wouldn't be in it. He knew that even thought in a few short months that the castle would be crawling with students once more, all the noise that they created wouldn't be able to cover up the deafening silence of her absence. Because there wasn't any one student that would ever compare to Samara.

Closing his eyes, Severus turned away from the castle and apparrated to Spinner's End, a part of him hoping to get caught in space and time on his way and to never emerge on the other side. However, as he stood in the gloominess of the living room and sitting down on his worn couch, he placed his head in his hands. Taking a deep and shuddering breath, he forced himself to think of his purpose in life, and that whether he ever saw Samara again, it truly didn't matter. He knew, that with the return of the Dark Lord, his future was quite uncertain. He had no future to live out with anyone and knowing that what he'd done for Samara was really for the best, he leaned back and sighed, hoping that at least she would find some happiness. Knowing that he never would without her, or at least, while still trapped with her memories. But he supposed that he really wouldn't give them up, not even or all the peace in the world. Because he couldn't lose his Samara. Not anymore than he already had.

THE END

Authors Note: Well there you have it, the end at last. At least of the first part. Like I said, I'll probably post the first chapter of the sequel later on today, however I need to ask one last question before I do that. The Rating for the sequel, keep it teen or rated M?

Anyway, I hope that you all enjoyed the story and thank to everyone who ever reviewed. I really am glad that you did as it really did keep me motivated and forced me to keep going. I could have abandoned this story, but knowing that so many of you enjoy it and read it, I just couldn't do that to all of you. So I really am eternally grateful for your continued support.