Another Beginning

Chapter 35

Family Gatherings

Harry went straight to Severus, being a vampire he could smell where his old potions professor was. Only he was so much more than merely his 'old potions professor'. He was a father figure, someone who understood him in a way nobody ever could. Despite being told, the first sight of Severus almost reduced him to tears, that's if he'd been able to cry. Severus had always been thin, but right now he was gaunt, paler than ever and the smell of death invaded the air. He didn't look like he had much longer to go at all, and Harry felt betrayed by Regulus and Draco for not informing him.

"Why didn't you tell me?" asked Harry, his face contorted in horror, his eyes filled with betrayal.

"He didn't want to worry you, he knew the temptation would be too much to bear." said Regulus, his own eyes shrunken and tired. He hadn't gotten much sleep in the past few weeks when Severus had deteriorated at a rapid pace. He felt useless; all he could do was make sure he was as comfortable as possible. He'd wanted to tell Harry for at least a week, he'd hoped that the others would at least tell him. Especially since Harry was trying to get them all together to have a nice holiday. Draco looked ten times worse; his normally immaculate appearance was in disarray. His eyes red and puffy, evidence that he'd recently been crying.

"I'm taking him to America," said Harry adamantly, "Go and get the potions he'll need and clothes and whatnot now." speaking to Regulus since he was the one that didn't look like a single wind would knock him over. Harry noted that Draco looked mighty relieved.

"Will you be able to take us all?" asked Draco, Apparating drained a wizard, even a wizard turned vampire.

"Portkey." said Harry bluntly; it would be easier on Severus' system if they did.

Draco nodded before he got up and summoned his stuff, he hated it here, and Grimmauld Place was so dirty and disgusting. No matter how much they tried to clean it up, it was filthy and to be honest it was a hazard to the health, and Severus' wasn't good right now. He prayed Harry could somehow convince his godfather to become one of them. He'd had such a hard life, yet when it was over…this happened. It wasn't fair and he'd been pitching fits over it for weeks. He was ready whenever they were.

"Lead the way," said Regulus coming into the room with two trunks which were promptly shrunk and placed in his cloak pocket.

Harry nodded grimly, heading over to Severus, wrapping the duvet tightly around him, keeping him warm. He lifted the man up gently, not wanting him to wake up and stop them, not that he was really in any condition to do so. Edward removed the Portkey, holding it out to the other two in the room. Then Harry took Severus' thin delicate hand in his and placed both their hands onto it. Taking a deep breath, he said the activation Portkey and Grimmauld Place disappeared from around them. The dizziness lasted merely seconds, before they reappeared in the Cullen's residence; Carlisle immediately helped Harry with Severus. Laying him down on the bed which had been transfigured using the sofa.

"He doesn't look good," said Carlisle taking his pulse, which by the way was to fast and weak to be considered anywhere near normal.

"I know," said Harry warily.

"He'll wake up in half an hour; he normally does two hours after the potions are given. They aren't helping as long as they used to." said Regulus tiredly.

"Would Muggle medicine help or hinder him?" asked Carlisle. He had a feeling he might not need them; there was a reason for Harry bringing them here. At least he thought so, he knew how much Harry cared about Severus, and he'd seen them interact during the time they'd been in Potter manor.

"He's not had any Muggle medicine since he was at least seventeen," said Harry quietly, "I do not think he ever returned to the Muggle world once he was free of his parents." he certainly wouldn't have wanted to return to the parents Snape had.

"Can wizards take it without side affects?" Carlisle then asked looking deep in thought.

"I wouldn't know, I was never allowed Muggle medicine, my family wouldn't waste it on the likes of me." said Harry shrugging his shoulders. "I can't see why it would though."

"It doesn't, I've taken Muggle medicine all my life, even during the summers after I joined Hogwarts." said Hermione entering the living room, with the portrait of Lily and James trailing behind her as if on invisible strings.

"Perhaps we should try that if the Magical means are becoming shall we say ineffective?" enquired Carlisle. It would only take him twenty minutes to acquire what he needed. The beauty of being a Doctor - most people didn't think twice or ask any questions.

"Maybe," said Draco, "Anything that helps him I'll be fine with." added Draco.

"You two go and get some sleep, no I mean it go if anything happens I'll get you up." said Harry adamantly. "You are no good to anyone exhausted, go on."

"Alright, but if anything changes…" said Draco trailing of a look of devastation appearing upon his features. Part of him prayed Harry would change him, so he wouldn't loss the only father figure he'd really had. They'd been through so much he and Severus, this was killing him.

"I'll find you right away." said Harry looking just as tortured as Draco.

Draco nodded without saying anything as Esme guided him from the room, showing him where he could sleep.

"Come on mate, Harry's right you need sleep." said Emmett helping Regulus from the sofa. It was a testament to how exhausted he truly was that he didn't protest even half heatedly.

"I'll be back in half an hour," said Carlisle grabbing his car keys before disappearing into his black BMW.

"I'll cook something," said Esme mostly to herself, thankfully they'd gone shopping for more than they'd ever need. She had many humans in her home, so she had to make sure they kept themselves well fed, especially Severus. She'd need to make some soups for him that was something she was good at. It was either that or clean, and she'd just get in the way if she did start polishing.

"Does he need another blanket?" asked Rosalie looking a little out of place; she didn't do the comfort thing. She was more at ease being sarcastic, just like the man sleeping in her home - dying with each breath they took.

"What's wrong with him?" asked James aghast at the sight of his once upon a time enemy and school rival not necessarily in that order.

"He's dying," said Harry, he would have choked on the words if he'd been able to.

"He doesn't deserve this!" cried Lily looking shattered at the sight of her best friend. James hugged her; they were able to feel emotions despite being portraits.

"No, no he doesn't." said Hermione subdued.

"Here, there's another blanket, some cold water if he wakes up," said Rosalie placing the blanket on the edge of the bed, and the water on the table beside them. She really didn't know what to do, normally their first instinct was to turn them, yet it might be a great disservice since this man had always had magic and there was a chance he could lose it.

"Thanks, Rose." said Harry quietly, placing the additional blanket over him keeping him as warm as possible. As sick as he was, he couldn't retain any of his body heat, so he needed to be kept as warm as possible. For that reason only Harry refrained from touching him skin on skin despite his desire to do so. Each beat of Severus' heart was the only indication he was still with them.

Edward remained silent himself, his hands massaging Harry's shoulders in comfort. He was fond of Severus, he'd been the one to help them realize their feelings for one another and act on them. Possibly because he knew what it felt like to love someone and not speak up about it. Severus had adored Lily, but keeping quiet was probably the worst decision he'd ever made. He had never loved anyone else like Lily, and Edward doubted he ever would. Yet he had felt the same once upon a time. He had thought he would never love another like he had Bella, he'd been too weak to stay away, in the end he'd come back to her. Yet look what happened? He'd fallen in love with Harry, which was more intense and loving than he'd ever felt for Bella. There might be hope for Severus to love another if he survived this. He knew what Harry would ask Severus the second he awoke.

"Maybe we should go to the shops and get a few other additional things we need? Clothes, maybe even some more food…what does Severus like?" asked Rosalie.

"Good idea," said Alice, "We'll come with you."

"He'll eat anything, always has," said Harry, no doubt because of the fact as a young boy he hadn't received much. Just like Harry himself at the end of the day. "He has a sweet tooth though, strawberry cheesecake, strawberry tarts, and things like that." he doubted very much Severus would be able to eat it, but it was the thought that counted.

"Alright," said Rosalie getting her own car keys before realizing everyone wouldn't fit into it, without thought Edward handed her his car keys. She smiled, although it came out more like a grimace as she accepted them, Alice, Ginny, Neville and Luna followed the Rosalie out. All of them had bonded in such a way that it was killing them to see such a strong proud man in such a state. Severus would probably be horrified that they were all seeing him this way, he'd been indignant about the fact they'd seen him slightly exhausted in Potter Manor - this was a hundred times worse.

"Is it fair?" asked Harry staring at Severus his green eyes tortured.

"This decision is entirely yours to make." said Edward quietly.

"But is it fair?" repeated Harry.

Edward paused briefly; "Was it fair when I turned you?" countered Edward. He hadn't asked Harry what he wanted; he'd seen a young boy in agony, dying before his very eyes. He'd reacted more on instinct, without having to think about it. If he had, he probably would have thought similar to Harry right now, was it far to ask so much of someone? To live forever, become immortal and never die? Leave behind their family which is what Harry would have had to do if they all hadn't already known about vampires. He hadn't known Harry's situation, for all he knew Harry could have adored his family and would have had to give them up. He didn't regret his decision, in fact he abide by his decision with one hundred percent certainty. He was finally happy; he would never know quite why he'd never wanted to turn Bella, perhaps because she hadn't been dying? And Carlisle's moral had rubbed of on him…who knew? He certainly didn't but things had worked out for the best.

"Your actions didn't just save one person, they saved everyone I love. Even if we hadn't got together - I could never regret it or wish you hadn't done it." said Harry, he'd never really been afraid of death. Having encountered it every year at Hogwarts, how could he be scared of something that had nearly come to pass over a dozen times? His broomstick, then the end of the year, the chamber, then the Dementors, his broomstick again, then every time he'd participated in the Tri-wizard tournament. No how can you fear something that you encountered so many times? As Dumbledore had so eloquently put it 'Death was but the next great adventure' it was kind of ironic coming from a man who'd lived so long and created a Horcrux.

"He can make his own decisions if it's what you want to do." said Edward, "I will stand by any decision you make."

Lily sniffled and a small smile appeared on her face, they looked so good together, she was glad they had one another.

"So will the others," said Esme piping in adamantly, as she cut and sliced vegetables into thin pieces so Severus would be able to eat them.

"Thank you," said Harry his relief evident.

Hermione just smiled grimly, they'd known the second they told Harry this would happen. It's why Severus had not wanted Harry informed, she did wonder if Severus was tempted himself. To become a vampire and live an eternal life, never aging, never getting sick…it was a temptation they all would like sent their way, well to most people anyway. Squibs could brew; their potions just weren't as potent as those brewed with magic. Squibs had enough magic in them to see magical places, and no doubt brew potions. It's essentially what Severus may become, but knowing how powerful her old teacher was - she had a feeling he'd be the same as Harry. Potentially more magically powerful.

Five hours had gone by; nearly everyone was out of the house on one errand or another. In reality they'd left to give Harry and Severus some privacy. Regulus and Draco were unsurprisingly still sleeping, catching up on the much needed rest. So when Severus finally came to it, only Harry was there, Edward was having a shower.

"Why I am not surprised?" rasped Severus, a grimace of pain on his face. Wakening up expecting Grimmauld Place, only to find himself somewhere light and airy. He could breathe easier here, without the smell of damp, darkness and mould. The first thing he saw was Harry, and he knew what was coming.

"Why didn't you let me know?" asked Harry his betrayal clearly etched on his face.

"You know why," said Severus weakly, the pain was becoming worse, he felt as though he was being cleaved in two.

"Here," said Harry holding a pain reliever to his mouth, unable to stand seeing Severus in pain.

Severus swallowed the potion quickly and desperately, not the least bit bothered that Harry could see how much pain he was in by this point. His body bowed in relief as the potion began to work immediately, he finally relaxed into the stifling heat the covers were causing.

"Will you let me?" asked Harry his green eyes filled with so much pleading that the words Severus was about to adamantly state 'no' were caught in his throat. Damn his weakness to hell, those green eyes…he'd do anything for them. "Please Severus; you're the only father figure I've ever known I can't lose you! Not now…not when you should just be able to start living."

"Please." begged Harry once more, seeing Severus wavering slightly.

"Harry," said Severus sighing tiredly, Merlin he was so very exhausted. His heart ached at Harry's words, he'd inwardly considered Harry sort of a son, like Draco. Yet he'd never expected to hear Harry say he was like a father to him.

"The pain will go away, you'll be fine and free to brew potions again…even invent a few." coaxed Harry.

"Bloody Slytherin," slurred Severus before he fell asleep unable to keep his eyes open any longer. The potion he was taking for the pain was the strongest one in existence.

Harry watched him for what felt like hours, hope stirring in his chest, his response indicated he was not so against it.

There we go, this story is nearly finished so i think I'll be doing that and life after death and betrayal and get another two stories crossed of the list :D