The usual disclaimers apply.


"Don't call me Nymphadora," she said angrily and he can't help but look at her.

The first time in years – years – that he saw her – and she still wore that ridiculous face of that heart-shaped pretty girl, not the beautiful young woman he once knew. The first time – and of course it had to be during those times – dark times. The Dark Lord – terrorising their world again. And she – part of the order.

Severus Snape found himself sitting at a large table – in a large building in London. Grimmauld Place. Bloody house of the bloody Blacks. And of course she was there. But not looking like the girl he once knew.

Not even the expression in her eyes is the same again. Determined – not loving. Determined – not hateful, spiteful. No – she's not the same any more.

But is he? No. He had put her in the back of his head – had tried to forget about her. About her, studying in his quarters, about her, smiling, laughing, moaning, whispering his name. And – he almost had succeeded. Almost.

Until – until he saw her again with that ridiculous face that everyone believed was her own – but isn't. It isn't her face. It's a mask, he knew.

"Miss Tonks," he said coldly – knowing that she despised her first name now even more.

"Professor Snape," she replied and didn't even look at him.

He wished, truly wished, to tell her to go home – lock herself away somewhere, be away from the fighting, from the dying that will – doubtlessly – occur. But he couldn't. She was not his responsibility any more.

Probably never had been.

"Nymphadora," Mad-Eye Moody said from somewhere and she her temper was rising again.

He had known she was detesting that name – but hadn't she always said that she liked the way he said it – whispered it – grunted it when the passion overtook him? When she overtook him? When she ruled over his body and his mind and his thoughts and everything that had been him?

No – he shook his head and took a sip of his tea. This was not the Nymphadora he had known. This was a cold woman, someone who could hold her own in a fight.

And he wondered, the cup on his lips, whether he had something to do with the fact that she hated her first name even more.


Done. Sorry this is not a happy ending. I couldn't bring myself to do it. Chop my head off, if you must but review first!