A/N: This is my first fic, so please don't flame.
Summary: Oneshot. One day after potions, Snape storms to his rooms, not knowing Harry is following. The result is a new found understanding. Not slash.
Snape angrily stormed down the hallway after another dreaded potions with Potter. The sight of the boy always caused anger to swell, letting unwanted emotions to well up from his steel exterior. What Snape didn't know was that the Potter who was the cause of his present loathing was following behind, wrapped in the invisibility cloak of his childhood enemy.
Harry Potter, in all his boyish stupidity, eagerly followed his hated potions professor into the depths of the chilly dungeons. Today's lesson had been a brutal one when Snape caught him daydreaming; his slip-up had caused the whole room to be evacuated as his botched potion corroded through the "indestructible" lab tables. His ears still rang from the tongue lashing he had received, not to mention the weeks worth of detentions. Harry barely caught himself before he groaned at the thought. They were entering a part of the dungeon Harry had never laid eyes on before.
Snape muttered the password to a portrait of Sir Augustus Briton of Canterbury, a potions master from the third century. Harry distinctly heard Snape say Ashwinder Egg and slipped through the portrait hole just as it closed. Snape sighed in relief as he sat on the couch and summoned a house elf for a mug of Earl Grey. Ah a great man Earl Grey was to invent such a fine tea, even if he was a muggle.
Harry looked around the room in awe; it was painted in a rich chocolate brown. He had half expected the room to be black, even if brown wasn't that far off. He had been given quite a start when the unknown house elf had appeared with a crack in the room. Harry sat himself down in a corner, hoping he would not be stepped on. The stone floor was icy cold, even if the cloak provided a small amount of warmth.
Snape drained the last of the tea from his cup, basking in the warmth the tea brought to his stomach. Slightly calmed down, but not completely, the man decided to do something he hadn't done in a long while. Before he changed his mind, Snape went into his bedroom and took what seemed to be a dusty old shoebox, the kind a large pair of boots comes in. Snape went back and sat on the couch in the living room, setting the box on a nearby coffee table. He reverently lifted the cover, blowing off dust. Inside sat a worn photo album and a worn teddy bear. Severus gently picked up the bear, exposing it to the light; the bear was made of khaki corduroy, worn by years of use and the eyes were mismatched where someone had lovingly replaced one of the eyes with a button. Biton he thought happily.
Harry sat shocked over in the corner, who would have expected Snape to have a snuggly. The bear looked worn, but loved, even if it did need to be re-stuffed from all the floppiness. The photo album looked interesting, though with its sand colored parchment. He would have a guess that the album contained childhood photos.
Severus hooked the bear in his arms and opened the album, the spine cracking with age. Inside was a chronological story of the potion masters life, starting from birth. Even as an infant, the hooked nose could still be seen. Tears welled up as he came upon pictures of his mother Eileen Prince. They were sitting together on a bench in the park and Severus was only about five. They were both smiling and waving at the camera, ice creams in hand. Many such pictures appeared as Severus turned the pages, basking in memories. Tears of loss rolled down his cheeks in small streams. The next page turn revealed a family portrait with Tobias in the center. The man's cold eyes seemed to bore into him like shards of ice and Severus felt like there was a rock at the bottom of his stomach. Suddenly his sniffling turned into full-fledge bawling. A series of unintelligible babblings like why, how, and hate spilled from his mouth as sobs wracked his body. It had been awhile since he had allowed himself to mourn the death of his parents.
Harry curiously got up to see what was in the album; he crept to look over Snape's shoulder and was greeted with the sight of a toddler Snape in mismatched clothing. He heard restrained sniffles as they turned the page to a picture of a woman, wham he presumed to be Snape's mother. He had never thought of Snape as a man who cried it seemed like such a human action and for the first time Harry could begin to understand the older man. His mean demeanor was hiding the depression he really felt. His stomach suddenly grumbled and he realized he would need to escape somehow. Nervously eying Snape he crept to the portrait hole slowly started pushing the door, checking for squeaks. As the potions master seemed too upset to notice, Harry slipped out into the corridor.
Severus finally stopped crying and felt a wave of exhaustion sweep over him. He carefully placed the album back in the box and stood up with Biton in the crook of his elbow. Slowly, Severus made it over to the bathroom where he washed off the dried tears and brushed his teeth. He then changed into a wrinkled cotton, black nightshirt which went down almost to his ankles. Sleepily he then climbed into bed, bear in arms, and fell into the best sleep he'd had in a long time.
Harry walked down the hallway and stripped off the cloak when he determined that no one was around. Following Snape today had shown Harry that he was indeed human with a soul, not some evil creature. From now on he would refrain from slandering his potion masters name and try to refrain from picking fights. It would be difficult, but he believed he could change for the better.
A/N: What did you think? Was the changing point of view between paragraphs confusing? Let me know or I won't be able to improve! Thanks for reading, Nick.