Hello everyone!

So, Courtpaige-Minervagirl gave me a prompt a little while ago and we decided to each write a short fic based on it. Her fic is entitled It's in her eyes and is posted on here for you all to read. This is my version and I dedicate it to Courtpaige who has been waiting very patiently to read it. So here it is my sweet, I hope you enjoy it!

Just a quick update on First Cut, I'm hoping to have the next chapter posted soon. I'm without the internet for a few day but hopefully I'll get a chance to go into work one day a bit early to post it while no one is around - sneaky :D

Anyway, I hope you all enjoy this little bit of fluff. It was hard to write something that didn't have anything to do with my other story so I struggled a bit. As always though, I'd love to know what you thought. Happy reading!

- Lillibet x

Prompt - "The feeling is mutual but to what extent, I don't know."


Breath Deeply

By

Lillibet426

Severus was laid on his back with his arms wrapped around Minerva who was snuggled into his chest. These were the best kind of mornings, when they could lay together and not have to worry about getting up. Minerva gave a contented sigh and she slowly opened her eyes. She let her hands wander over his smooth chest and he kissed her forehead knowing she was awake.

"What do you have planned for the summer?" She asked, lifting her eyes to look up at him.

"I don't make plans," it was true, he never did. He stroked a hand over her hair and Minerva chewed on her bottom lip. "What's the matter?" He asked, noticing her change in temperament.

"I was just thinking..." She paused, this might not be the best idea she'd ever had. She sat up to look at him properly, lifting the covers to shield her naked body. "What if we spent some of the summer together?"

Severus was quiet for a second. Spend the summer with Minerva? He wasn't really sure how to respond to that. Did they have that kind of relationship? He felt her shift nervously in front of him and he realised he hadn't answered her.

"Do you think it wise?" He asked carefully and Minerva frowned.

"Do you not want to?" She watched him hesitate for a second and her frown increased. "What is this?" She asked suddenly.

"What?" Severus sat up too and he noticed the way she moved away from him when his hand brushed over her leg.

"What is this? What exactly are we doing here?" Months of pent up questions were gushing out of her and now that she'd started, she saw no reason to stop.

"I don't understand what you're asking me," Severus frowned, where was this coming from?

"We've been sleeping with each other for nearly a year. I think it's about time we talked about it, don't you?"

"No."

"No?" Minerva stared at him incredulously.

"No," he repeated with a shake of his head. "I don't see why we need to talk about it. Unless you want to end it?" He looked into her wide surprised eyes and tried to keep his face neutral even though his stomach was twisted in knots.

"End it?" Minerva gaped at him. Was this really happening? "I don't want that Severus, what I want is the opposite." She watched Severus as he came to fully understand what she'd said and his eyes softened slightly.

"I can't give you anymore than I already have." He could feel his chest tighten as he said the words and he reached out for her. She pushed his hands away angrily.

"You can't? Or won't?" Severus recoiled at the coldness with which she spoke but he couldn't give in to her.

"I'm not talking about this." He climbed out of bed and slipped into his dressing gown.

"Why!" Minerva sat up on her knees, wrapping the covers securely around herself as she watched him pace around his bedroom.

"Because it is pointless!"

"How do you feel about me?"

"What?" Severus froze in place and stared at her.

"Do you care for me as much I do you?" She was looking at him with those damn eyes and he dropped his own to the floor. Why was she doing this? Why was she asking him questions that he wasn't even sure he could answer to himself?

"I..." When he looked up at her again, he had a strong desire to protect her, even from himself. "The feeling is mutual, but to what extent I do not know." He knew it was cold, heartless and almost business like but it was the only way he could express his feelings. Minerva sat on the bed in front of him, shaking her head. Severus wasn't sure but he thought he might have seen a tear fall across her cheek as she jumped out of bed.

"I have to go." Minerva found her dress quickly and shrugged it on as fast as she could. She no longer wanted to be in the same room with him, not if he could lie next to her each night and then say this to her. She felt empty.

"Minerva wait." Severus was able to grab her arm as she tried to scurry to the door with the rest of her clothes tightly bundled in her arms.

"Let go of me!" She spat venomously.

"Why are you doing this?" He kept his tight grip on her and pulled her towards him so he could see her eyes.

"I wanted to know where I stand in your life, I wanted to know what this was between us because..." Minerva stopped herself quickly, wondering whether or not she was doing the right thing. She took a deep breath... "I'm falling in love with you." Severus froze and Minerva closed her eyes briefly to collect her thoughts. He had a right to know and this way, she could find out once and for all if this affair had been a waste of time. She waited for a response but when none came, she felt her chest cave in. "I wanted to know how you felt about me... now I think I know." She tried to step away from him but Severus had pulled himself together. He used both hands to hold her by the shoulders and he shook her slightly with his anger.

"Then tell me!" He shouted through gritted teeth. "Please, tell me how I feel about you."

"I was an opportunity!" She shouted back, throwing her belongings to the floor. She pushed as hard as she could on his chest but he didn't move. "I make no impact on your life and nor would you care if I left it. I am an opportunity you took full advantage of."

"You think I used you?" Severus stared at her in horror, did she really think so little of him?

"Of course you did," but even as she said the words, the hurt look on his face made her question herself.

"I..."

"You never once said that you..." She cut him off and she wasn't sure if she was trying to argue her point to him or herself.

"Minerva..." But she continued to talk over him until his hands tightened on her shoulders and he made her look at him forcefully. "Would you cease?" He said loudly and she immediately stopped talking. Severus took a deep breath, he couldn't lie to her. "You're asking me if I care about you... of course I do. But I'm not in love with you."

"Severus..." His words were like ice and she wanted to run back to her own rooms but his vice like grip was holding her in place.

"Would you rather I lie to you?" He asked forcefully, his face inches from hers. "Would you rather I..." She wriggled against him.

"Let me go!"

"No! Listen to me! I don't want to have this conversation right now because I'm not ready. And it's because I care so much about you that I don't want to have this conversation."

"You're hurting me!" She felt suffocated and Severus could see it in her panicked eyes but he had to make her understand.

"Stop fighting me dammit!" Her fight lessened a little but she continued to squirm. "You just told me that you're falling in love with me..." Minerva was mortified, she had indeed told him that she had fallen for him but he hadn't said it back. She was furious when she felt tears stream across her cheeks.

"Please, forget I..." But he cut her off again.

"No. I won't forget it. You have no idea how that makes me feel." Severus felt her stiffen in his arms as she registered his gentle voice with which he was addressing her. "To have the love of a woman who is so pure, kind and generous... for once in my life, I feel like I'm worth something." She had completely stilled in his arms, her hands lay gently on his chest as she looked up at him. Not for the first time, Severus felt an overwhelming wave of affection rush over him. "I don't want to say those words now because when I finally do, I want to mean it!" He lifted his hands to her cheeks and wiped the tears away. She was beautiful and as he looked at her, he realised how easily he could fall for her if he just let himself.

"Sometimes I hate you." She said, quietly as she turned one of his hands over to kiss its palm. She felt a flutter through her chest when she heard him laugh.

"I know, but you love me." He leaned down and dropped a kiss on her cheek. Minerva smiled brilliantly. He may not have said he loved her but in her whole life, she'd never felt so safe with someone.

"I do." She tilted her head to allow him to kiss her on the lips. It was sweet, lingering and full of promise. Minerva's hands worked up his back and she clawed at his dressing gown. When Severus pulled back he brushed her hair from her face and traced her lips with his thumb. Minerva could see him thinking something over in his head.

"I would like to see you during the summer holidays," he said suddenly and Minerva was surprised. "If that would be acceptable to you." He added and Minerva laughed.

"Yes. Yes, I would like that." Severus returned his lovers smile and he slipped a hand to her lower back and started to lead her back to his bedroom.

"Would you like some breakfast?" He asked nuzzling her neck but Minerva shook her head.

"I think I'd rather go back to bed."


Hope you liked it! xxx