He had not wept when Albus Dumbledore, his mentor, his savior, had taken his last breath only hours after Voldemort had fallen. There were no tears when he saw Minerva McGonagall's name on the long list of the dead. And he'd certainly had no tears when he learned that both Harry Potter and his best friend Ronald Weasley had succumbed to their wounds weeks later and within minutes of each other.

Severus Snape had no sorrow, no tears for anyone. He had nightmares, though. It had been a little over two years since his tolerance of the Dreamless Sleep Potion had become so high, that the potion was now useless. His nightmares were of Nymphadora Tonk's flaming body falling from her broom, him stumbling over the curse torn body of her lover, Remus Lupin, the screams of Arthur Weasley as he tried to staunch the great gouts of blood that flowed from Ginny Weasley's throat. Hardly the worst of his nighttime penance, for there were many more memories that replayed within his mind when he tried, desperately, for some small respite.

It was four years later, when he came across a small notice in a Muggle newspaper. His hand clutched tightly at his heart as it finally burst with the sadness, anger, regret, and tears he had walled away for so long.

She was the brightest witch of her age, many said. Her brilliant mind had saved Harry Potter almost as many times as he himself had preserved that wretched boy's life. Potter had cast the killing blow that sent Voldemort to his permanent end, but it was Hermione Granger's spellwork that had made the day possible. Her clever, and original charms, along with her knowledge of Muggle espionage, lured the snake from his hidden nest before he was ready. The Order of the Phoenix was able to strike, hard, taking out many of the Dark Lord's traps before he'd even been able to spring them.

Never had Snape a kind word or passing thought for Hermione Granger. Not when she was a student, and not even after the last body was buried. He had not known the intelligent witch had taken the option of her early NEWTs. He had refused to return to Hogwarts. There were too many gone.

He assumed that she would pick up the pieces of her shattered life, as so many others had, and that she would find a niche for herself. She hadn't.

Hermione Granger had killed herself by throwing herself onto the tracks of an underground train one busy afternoon in Muggle London. It was this senseless death that broke Severus Snape. He was angry, at first, and many breakables perished as he shouted and railed at Merlin and the heavens. Then, amidst the glittering shards of glass, he had fallen into his favorite chair, dropped his head into his hands, and the tears came.

Not all the tears were for Miss Granger. There were tears now for Albus, for Minerva, and yes, he even wept for Harry Potter. When those tears were done, though, his silent sobs were for Miss Granger. For her lost potential and for her despair. Lastly, he wept for himself; for his selfishness in never having wondered what had become of the last member of the Golden Trio.

Severus Snape was alone.

A/N: This was a bitter backlash to the blood bath that was Deathly Hallows. I wasn't enthused by the 5th and 6th books, but had sincerely hoped to see some improvement in Deathly Hallows. After many long months, and arguments, I must concede that the world of Harry Potter belongs to Rowling, and no matter how much I disagree with where she took her characters and what she did to them, she created them and that is her right. Thank Merlin for fan fiction, where we can change everything.