Disclaimer: All aspects of the Harry Potter universe belong to J.K. Rowling. I own nothing.
Summary: Set in the Emerald Eyes universe. Harry learns a valuable lesson about fate.
A/N: Co-written in sentence-by-sentence 'Round Robin' style by ObsidianEmbrace. (Yes, you're taking a peek into the mad mentality of our Sunday-night randomness...) Hope you enjoy it, nonetheless! :-)
"There's no way you can go in there, mate," Ron whispered. "He keeps it locked."
Harry rolled his eyes, and brandished his wand pointedly at the large door. "Alohomora," he whispered with a smirk, grateful Snape had taught him the spell earlier than his peers.
A click resounded in the dank corridor.
When Harry raised his eyebrows in question, Ron nodded jerkily.
Nudging open the scarred wood, Harry inched the toe of his trainer inside Snape's storage room, his heart thudding against his rib cage.
"There isn't any light," Ron hissed nervously, from too close beside Harry's ear.
"There doesn't need to be," Harry whispered back, poking his elbow into Ron's stomach to regain some personal space. "There's enough light from the torch out here."
"Right," Ron muttered croakily as he obeyed the pressure of Harry's elbow.
"All right," Harry breathed. "Quick. Which one?"
"Erm..." Ron stretched up on his toes so that he could peer along the second set of shelves that ringed the room. "I'm...not sure, Harry. I've never really noticed the actual color of it. Blue, maybe. Or black--"
"It should be pink, I think...."
"Pink? There are five pink ones!" Ron hissed.
"Just..." Harry licked his lips, flipping his head around toward the half-open door. "Just grab them all then. You're taller than me!"
Stretching up once more on the balls of his feet, Ron plucked the tallest pink flask from the shelf and shoved it toward Harry.
"Hurry up, Ron!" Harry whispered hoarsely as he juggled three flasks in his arms.
His sweaty fingers slipped against the rim of the fourth flask as he snatched it out of Ron's hand.
The booted footsteps picked up their pace.
"No," Harry nearly squeaked, shaking his head frantically as Ron ducked his head to delve deep into the back of the shelf. "That's good! Five's fine. C'mon..."
When Ron didn't obey quickly enough, Harry's fingers scrabbled in the shadows until he grabbed a hold of Ron's thick sweater. "Someone's coming!" he whispered urgently as he tugged.
"What?" Ron exclaimed, jerking around. Harry flinched, as though he'd already seen it coming; Ron's elbow knocked into his wrist, sending Harry stumbling back into the door; it swung closed, but instead of slamming shut, it banged into something solid.
Harry's head whipped around at the low oath. Long fingers curled around the edge of the door.
Ron swore under his breath. In horror, Harry squatted quickly, realizing that one of the bottles was slipping from his embrace; it fell between his knees before he could catch it, smashing into a thousand bubbly-pink shards.
The door was swung open unceremoniously, and Harry was toppled out of his precarious squat. "Oomphf" he grunted as the heavy door slid him over the floor--and through the tiny bits of glass.
Automatically flipping over, Harry held his breath, pressing his nose into the cold stone, knowing very well that the wetness seeping into the seat of his trousers was bright pink and strewn with glass slivers. Maybe if he lay very still, no one would notice him; Ron was still standing, afterall.
"Weasley." The ominous voice slinked a shiver down Harry's spine. Ron squeaked as he was yanked out into the corridor. "What is the meaning of this?" Snape's dark voice thundered.
Ron stuttered; Harry lifted his face, realizing that he was half-hidden behind the wide-open door.
"Ah," he heard Snape drawl, sounding suddenly very pleased. Harry drew his knees up toward this body, in a desperate attempt to make himself invisible.
Harry's head snapped up so fast that he felt momentarily dizzy. Snape's nose was pressed right against his own.
"I..." Harry croaked; he tried to sit up, but Snape beat him to it. Gripping Harry about the upper arm, Snape pulled him up in one swift motion.
Harry winced as his backside brushed against the door; little pinpricks of pain scorched across his bum.
Snape spun Harry sharply around.
"No, no!" Harry groaned, screwing up his face. "Don't! There's glass in it."
"I realize this, Potter," Snape grumbled. "Falling into broken glass is your trademark, after all..."
"It hurts," Harry mumbled.
"Well, what did you expect, you daft boy?" Snape growled, as he waved his wand over Harry's seat.
Harry's cheeks flamed with mortification; this was the second time in a year that Snape had had to magically remove a few pieces of glass from his posterior.
Several paces away, Ron groaned. "Not again," he muttered, knocking the back of his head against the wall.
"Not another word, Mr. Weasley, or our next stop will be Mr. Filch's office," Snape said distractedly as he studied the devastation at the back of Harry's trousers.
"There's probably another flask of it, Ron." Harry glanced over his shoulder at his friend, who had clapped his hand over his eyes and was breathing deeply.
Harry tried to twist around toward Snape. "He needs--"
"Don't," Ron hissed between his teeth. He began squirming against the wall.
"It's stupid to torture yourself like this," Harry told him quietly before turning back to Snape, who had just removed the final traces of the slivers. "Ron really needs the pink stuff," he whispered.
"Har-ry!" Ron groaned indignantly.
"Pink stuff?" Snape echoed in confusion, looking between the two boys.
"You know, Harry said, "that stuff you take when you--" Harry paused, readjusting his explanation for Ron's sake, "when your stomach aches. I saw some of it in your office one time, so I thought--"
Snape gave him an odd look. "Why would you believe Stomach Calming Draught would be pink?"
Ron was almost panting out in the corridor.
Wrinkling his nose, Harry stared at Snape as if he were the dullest knife in the drawer.
"It's the pink stuff," he said pointedly, with a wide-eyed shake of his head.
"I've gotta go!" Ron moaned, and then without waiting for permission, he bolted down the corridor.
Snape and Harry watched him as he careened around the open door of the lav so fast, he nearly toppled over.
"Mr. Potter," Snape said, narrowing his gaze as he turned back to glare at Harry. "Do you realize that Mr. Weasley would have consumed a vial of liquidized rat spleen if you had given him that pink stuff?"
Unconsciously reaching back for a scratch at his now tingling skin, Harry thought about this. "Not for long, though," he concluded naughtily, pressing his lips together to keep from grinning.
Snape raised his eyebrow, clearly not amused. "How are you feeling, Mr. Potter?" he inquired coldly.
"It stings a bit," Harry said, suddenly feeling rather grumpy, though the places that had stung sharply a moment ago really just itched mostly. "You were supposed to fix it."
"Oh, is that so?" Snape demanded darkly. "You come into my storeroom and pulverize several days worth of work, and I am simply to trot in and make it all better for you?"
Harry scowled at the sarcastic questions.
Snape glared at him.
"Decidedly not, Mr. Potter."
Harry scuffed his trainer along the floor. "Well, what am I supposed to do about Ron, then?" He peeked up over the rims of his glasses.
"Why didn't you simply ask me for the draught?" Snape demanded suspiciously. "It certainly would have saved you the trouble of sneaking about my personal storage chamber." Snape smirked. "Would have saved you from a smarting backside…"
"It only itches now," Harry admitted, looking away.
"That does not answer my question—"
"Ron would have died," Harry explained rather seriously. "He was too embarrassed—"
"What about the Inf—"
"No way," Harry whispered, glancing down the corridor to see if his best made had emerged from the loo. "She would've taken his temperature and poked around under his shirt, and that's almost worse. Especially with the way he feels right now..."
Snape glared for a second longer, and then with barely a glance, he extracted a thin vial from the third shelf. The contents were a bright green. He plunked it down into Harry's hand. Harry squinted at the sloshing liquid. Not a trace of pink.
"This looks like acid. It'll kill him."
"Get to class, Potter," Snape said sourly, waving away the mess on the floor before closing the door to his potions storage.
"What about me?" Harry piped up, scratching again.
"Judging by your mischievous streak this month, I believe fate has taken care of this particular situation..."
Harry made a face, tipping the emerald liquid back and forth in the corked vial. "That's not fair..."
"If you prefer to stop by my quarters to hash it out tonight, Potter, we can certainly see just how fair I can be."
Harry quickly clamped his lips together. He shook his head.
"I thought not," Snape said, a trifle smugly.
Harry sighed and obeyed the sudden pressure between his shoulder blades.
Shaking his head, Snape guided the twelve-year-old toward the staircase.
If you can't already tell, this began as an experiment in alternating sentences last night and this is what OE and I came up with. I hope you had a laugh or two (maybe a smile?) for your troubles. Thanks for reading!
P.S. I have plans to begin an Emerald Eyes sequel during Christmas Break. Is there still any interest?