Disclaimer: I don't own the characters, just any OCs I throw in.
Chapter 1: Absit Invidia, or Let Ill Will Be Absent from Here
I blinked a few times to clear my head, lifting my eyes to stare up into the darkness just beyond the halo of light my booklight spared me.
"Excuse me?" I asked, reaching up to tuck some stray strands behind my ears.
"I'm done. I quit. Finished. I want to be elsewhere. Not here."
"I understand the sentence, I'm looking for the context," I said, reaching for my wand as I closed my book quietly. "With your job, with this place? With us?"
"You're so smart, haven't you figured it out yet?" he was shaking softly in his frustration, soft red hair falling into his eyes.
"What exactly am I supposed to figure out? That the last time we took a break you enjoyed it too much and don't want to be in a monogamous relationship anymore? That you're sick of being the second one promoted at the office? That you don't want to just settle down and have a clutch of pups like every other sibling? Or am I supposed to figure out why you're taking it out on me instead of just leaving like you want to?" I stood and flicked my wand wordlessly, illuminating the lamps around the room. Ron hated it when I used wordless magic. Until he learned how. Now it was just a childish reminder that yet again, he was tardy to the party, and no-one wondered what was taking him.
"How about that loving each other just isn't enough to wash over all those other things anymore, Hermione?" he tried to step back out of the light but it encompassed both of us too well.
"Well, I guess that makes you smarter than me in the end."
I'm not saying it was Ron's fault, you see. Our relationship had always been tumultuous. But Ron – he wasn't like me, or like Harry. I always planned for every outcome, good, bad or neutral; I relied on my brains to take care of everything. Harry thought and reacted, he formed one plan, took to it, and only modified it in dire need.
Ron was different. He was my rock. He came into it quickly, explosively.
But those are always the kind to break.
Six feet under was a horrid place to rest. Even worse if you had been put to rest with the very thing that killed you. Completely horrifying if you were merely forced into a coma of sorts whilst your erstwhile assassin HAD died…and was rotting in the same deplorable hole.
"Nagini, you were a rank creature in life and death has done you no more favors than it has your late master," former potions instructor of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry coughed, hard, into the dried husk limp on his chest.
He cleared his throat and closed his eyes against the nausea. "A side effect of a bad bezoar, no doubt. Of course it would be bad, the blasted Gryffindor twits must have stolen the last few good ones from my supplies."
Severus Snape closed his eyes and contemplated his situation. Everyone thought he was dead. And a traitor, provided Potter hadn't shared those memories.
"Bugger that. Potter in all his moral honest self of course would have shared the pertinent part of my memories. Blast him. I was better off 'dead'."
The very idea of fame and notoriety as a hero was, frankly, more horrifying than the hole Snape had woken in.
With a great grunt and a heave, Severus managed to roll what was left of Nagini off him and to the side. He groped for his wand, grateful that someone had remembered to bury it with him.
"That would have to have been Granger," he growled to himself. "Romantic, idiot of a know-it-all. One wonders why she knew to bury it with me. Even I thought I was dead, thanks to you."
His last remark was aimed towards the husk he'd divested himself of; he knew that would have been Weasley. The twit would have insisted on only digging one hole, lazy as he was known to be. He growled under his breath and groped for his wand.
"Lumos," he whispered. A faint glow emanated from the tip of his wand and he hissed in pain. "Blast, how long have I been down here, for Merlin's sake?"
Severus closed his eyes once again and began the laborious task of clearing the soil on top of him. Luckily, the twits hadn't a shroud to wrap around him and he could make slow, steady progress. He envisioned his personal gardens at Spinner's End, sending bit by bit of the detritus from above him there.
"Sometimes, it would pay to stay dead."
Hermione watched while Ron cast his Expandabox charm on his old school trunk and packed his things away inside it. Not that she thought he'd consider stealing from her, or that there would be a question as to who owned what. Not even that she wanted to fight with him, or make up.
Hermione stood there, coffee mug in hand, sipping regularly, because that's what her girlfriends always said they did. Mind, they typically fought or cried or showed some other emotion. But the gist was the same: watch him pack, watch him leave. She chewed the ends of her hair when the slight air kicked up by Ron's packing blew it towards her mouth but mostly she thought.
She thought about their first meeting. The daring rescue from the troll. Being petrified – literally. Fourth year and the disasters all year between her and Ron…that had actually started their third year. Fifth year and Ron's fling with Lavender Brown. Sixth year, Dumbledore's death – and Ron's arms the ones she found herself in. Seventh year – the end of the war, beginning of something she and Ron had thought would last forever. Between then and now…too much to recount.
"You don't have to pack it all now, you know," Hermione said quietly, more to her mug than to Ron.
"I'm not coming back, Hermione. I love you but its just not enough anymore," Ron said gruffly. He was staring determinedly anywhere but at her.
"I'm not asking you to come back, Ronald. I'm saying you can get your stuff at a later date, since I'm sure you're tired, or I can send it along, good Merlin," Hermione said hotly. She bristled at the implication. "Fine, if you want to leave so badly and so quickly, go ahead. I was trying to be civil and save you the exhaustion after a long day."
"Bloody hell, Hermione. I never took you for one to get so emotional . Like it hasn't been over for ages and ages now," Ron said irritably.
"I'm not getting emotional and its not about how long its been 'over', Ron! Christ, are you refusing to see why I'm annoyed or can't you see it?" Hermione slammed her mug down on her night-table.
"And well, there it is. I'm just too stupid, am I? There, its done and I'm leaving," Ron barely kept from shouting, hefting his trunk and apparating out just in time, as Hermione's mug was winging through the air at his head.
"Blasted, blind git!"
AN: I know I haven't posted in ages, but please bear with me. This story just kinda came to me, so let's see where this takes us together, hmm?
As always, please, please, read and review.
Yours always, Kyo