Disclaimer: The characters and setting belongs to J.K. Rowling.

Summary: Harry is very sick. Severus helps him.

Pairings: Severus/Harry

Rating: R


(When Anything is Better Than the Pain)


by: Spirit

A/N: This is a fic I wrote years ago. One of my first Snarry stories. I'm posting it here because I thought I lost it forever and had to search everywhere I could to find it today. It's been posted before so chances are you've read it. If you haven't, keep in mind it's old, and I hope you enjoy reading.



Dark wet maddening coldness.



Is this hell? Does hell burn like millions of needles into the skin? Does hell smell of...blood. So much blood. Metallic and red. Blending with the coldness; how fitting.

"Potter! Harry?"

Do demons have voices like angels or is darkness and light just contradictions to each other? Comparable to each other...are they? How can victory feel so cold? How can success hurt? How? How? How...

"Harry you must not fall asleep. Do you understand? I will get you to safety soon."

And do demons sound like angels to the dead?

"I can't..."

I can't. Let me sleep. Let me drift. The dark calls to me. Let me give in to the warm embrace. Kiss of death. Let me...die. Let me die with those that are dead in my name.

"Severus go! He will freeze in the snow. Look he is already turning blue from exhaustion and the cold. Take him and leave. The worst is over so we will manage. Go now!"

"Albus I don't know the other cure for the curse. He will die if we don't get it in three days. All our efforts will be in vain and the death of the Dark lord will mean nothing if Harry dies. We must get one of them to tell us."

"No you must take him away now or there will be no need for the curse to work! Do your best Severus. I have faith in you and your potions. Do what you must."

Snow. Snow white. Snow bright. First snow I feel this dark and endless night... Does death always feel cold? Weightless am I. Weightless in an ocean of blurry movement and ragged jolts. I'm flying...dying... Can legs that dare not walk, run? Am I running...or is that my angel of death again?

The theory of Apparition is that of the theory of displacement. If body Snape grabs body Harry at a speed and strength that defies the probability of a curse killing both bodies on the spot, then body Snape has a clear and concise opportunity to displace both bodies to another place. Time and space can be defied. Thus is the power of magic. I have magic in my blood.

I have magic...in...my...blood. Tingling. Tingling. Burning. Burning! Molten fire chasing dragons in the river that is my blood stream! Merlin's beard and all the saints both alive and dead there are vengeance demons cursing through my veins!

"Arghhhhhhh! HELP ME!"

"I will Harry. I will."

"Help me. Help me. Help me..."

My body struggle in the tight grasp of his cradling arms and I know there is not much that he can do. The curse is ancient. It feels ancient as it burns through my veins. My blood boils beneath the surface of my skin like little ripples of innocent pockets of air. My blood boils. My skin burns and I know that it will only get worse. I can feel the pain neurons inside of me opening unwillingly to the spell that commands them. It will only get worse.

"Help Me!" I am encased in pain...

With my eyes clenched shut and fists hurtling through the air, the descending unto the bed is hardly noticeable. Then the pain spreads. Head. Arms. Back. Butt. Legs. A fire is burning through my body. A fire that will not end. What do I look like to him now? Open wide dilated green eyes stream silent tears that burn a path down my raw cheeks as they slide. My mouth, emitting an ear-shattering scream that gurgles as the blood beneath the skin in my throat bubbles and boils.

And he, a silent figure of determination. How could I have ever doubted this wizard?

"Here drink this."

Anything. I will drink anything. I will try anything. I will do anything to stop the pain. Anything...Anything...Make the pain go away. Make the pain go away...

"What was that?"

It's funny how normal can feel extraordinary after a taste of hell. It's funny how tingles of pain can suddenly feel like tingles of happiness. The dreariness of the hut we are obviously hiding within suddenly looks splendid to my eyes. The black of his cloak is blacker. The pale of his skin is now more pleasant. And the sound of his long sigh, across the room send shivers down my spine. It caresses me from ten feet away.

"Professor Snape, what was that potion?"

The clothes against my skin suddenly feel too tight and too warm. The feel of smooth wizarding material rubbing against my flesh slowly begins to drive me mad. Oh Merlin...Merlin help me... My pants, almost always too big, seem not big enough. Smooth cloth rubs against my inner thigh. Brushing my already rock hard erection.


I groan from the sound of my name from his lips. Sexy, sexy voice. I wonder if human males purr? I wiggle and groan some more. The bed is my heaven. His voice is my heaven. The feel of smooth cloth caressing my skin will drive me mad. Without thought, my fingers tug impatiently on the buttons of my school robe. Almost seven whole years at Hogwarts and somehow my mind goes blank at the process of undressing myself.

"It's an aphrodisiac. The strongest I have. I'm sorry Harry, I had no choice."

Fingers close over my fumbling ones. I gasp at his touch. Touch me some more. Touch me everywhere some more and don't ever stop. Fingers unbutton my clothes with swift movements. He's an expert at removing other men's clothes. I wonder, somewhere at the back of my mind, if a part of me always knew he was not quite straight.

"Shhhh..." Even the air on my naked flesh sends me reeling. From pain to pleasure. How sadistic of him.

His fingers pause, suspended inches above my chest. I whimper a sound of frustration in the back of my throat where my blood boils with another emblem of magic.

"Harry look at me and try your hardest to focus." Emerald meets onyx and I whimper some more. "I need your consent."

Now? Tethering on the edge of insanity? - "I am already of age. Already decided I was gay. Please..."

His fingers make my skin feel even more alive than it did before. Can I transcend my own physical state just from long fingers trailing pathways down my body? If I don't shout aloud will I go crazy? I need...I need more...I need him...I need...

Nails and feathery light kisses.

His teeth. His tongue. His onyx eyes so dark they look like pebbles of the night.


"Tell me what you want me to do."

"I need you. I want you...beside me...please..."

How can eyes of midnight look so vulnerable in the face of need? How can he hold back? I strain against the strength of his palms holding me down unto the bed. I whimper. So vulnerable...yet it is I who lay naked before him, begging him to give me what I've never had before.


"Please...all I need is you..."

And he concedes slowly. How can he question me when he reeks of pride and power? How can he wonder when he has the body of a man, eyes of a dark angel and the mouth of a god? I need that mouth on me.

He undresses with the same skill that he used to undress me. I wonder again at this. How many lovers did he have before? Who were they? My father? Sirius? Lucius Malfoy? Tainted by darkness. Everyone is, even me.

"Harry I can do this without... Are you sure?"


Body A against Body B. Flesh against flesh. He intoxicates me. -"Harry, you may as well call me Severus if we are to do this." - I smile and nod. Somewhere in the back of my mind I always wanted to call him Severus.

"Touch me please...Severus."

He touches me with every inch of his body, pulling me against him as I shiver from the sheer pleasure of being able to be this close to him. My erection brushes against his and I groan ragged and loud. Again...again...again... I rock against his hip, clutching desperately unto him as sparks fly through my body. But, it's not enough and I scream from the frustration of it all. He is motionless, lying there, allowing me access to whatever I think I need to quell the desire that rages through me.

"Please...please...please..." I'm whimpering desperately into the hollowness of his throat.

Strong fingers again clutch my waist, holding me still once more. Yet I strain towards him already half shouting from the desire to press into his warmth. Then...kisses. Feather soft again. Sometimes gentle, sometimes not. Sometimes sucking, sometimes nipping sharp points of pain that sends electric shocks down my spine and to my crotch. I whimper ragged breaths of oxygen and pleas.

"Need you...need you...please...please...so empty...so hot..."

Behind the storm in his eyes I see the hesitation. I know my pleas are raw threads of need streaming from my lips without much thought. He knows too. Would I ask these things of him in a normal state? It doesn't matter to me. It shouldn't matter to him. It shouldn't. I need him...inside of me...so badly.

"Need you...in me..."

He stops as if time freezes and I wiggle in his arms, whimpering and half howling again. Head thrown back, I'm going mad. Going mad from the sheets tangled between my legs. Going mad from his stillness...his closeness...his warmth. Need him. Need him to stop the feeling of going mad. Need him as his eyes of darkness search for signs of light in mine.

"Please Severus..."

Please from the Boy-Who-Lived-Twice. Please from the wizard that has been the bane of his life. Please from the one who needed him to fight by my side. Please from Harry to Severus.

Please...and he pulls away almost violently.

His fingers close over my throbbing ache and I thrust into his hand. My concession prize. My eyes burn with tears of shame as I continue to thrust. I don't want this. I want him. He wants me too. But, my body isn't quite so partial and the burning desire in me is already beginning to lessen with each stroke of his hand. I wonder if he understands my sobs? I wonder if he sees the tears that refuse to fall? I wonder until I cannot wonder anymore. Lost to the building whirlwind that gathers throughout my shaking body.

And the world shatters as I come all over his hand.

"Sleep now. You will need the rest."

A cleansing spell I don't know to clean me, another to deal with his own problem and a third to dress us both; eliminates all further contact between us. I sigh and take his advice.

I already feel a headache coming on.

Avarda Kedavra. Stupify. Petrificus Totalus. Crucify. The words resound throughout my brain and I hear them as they are shouted from lips of anger and hatred. War and violence goes hand in hand. War and hatred. War and pain. Pain... Fire... Deaths... Did I die? Did he kill me instead? Was it all a lie? Did I dream it all?

That flash of green, coming towards me, heading for my heart; will it take my life? What does screams sound like from the hollowness of a grave? What does it sound like from an empty shell without a soul? Kiss of death. There are demons of death, shrouded in black, coming towards me. They are coming. They are coming.

He is coming to get me!


"No! You're dead! I killed you!"

"Harry stop fighting me. You have a very high fever. You're delirious."

Harry...Potter. Your time has come. This is the end... Stop! Stop the voice. Stop the laughter. Stop the sound of him and the look of him. Stop the fire. Stop the heat. I'm burning up. Clawing at my skin, afraid to close my eyes. He will kill me where I sleep. He and the others that dance above my head creating sounds of torture and screams of those wounded, will burn me alive.

Who is a hero if he cannot save himself?



Professor Snape. Evil bastard. Greasy git. Bastard of the devil. Vampire in waiting. Spawn of a demon. Death Eater. Death...eating me alive. Demon with the touch of a master. Demon with the eyes of a demi-god.

"Yes Harry. I know them all."

And do demons sound like angels to their dead?

"The fever is the effect of the curse weakening. The *Lascivus Potio fights the curse but it is not enough. The fever is almost the final stage. If we succeed in this then you will heal."

How do you fight a curse with potions? How do you bottle sanity and brew strength? Healer. Heal me. Burning. Burning up. Heat from inside. Heat from outside. Not enough air to fill my lungs. Not enough wind to cool my skin. Will I spontaneously combust if my internal temperature exceeds the temperature of the environment for long enough? I read it somewhere. Muggle book. Hermione lent it to me. Hermione? Ron? Where are you? Are you alive? Did he kill you too or was that just me? Close your eyes...touch me...and die.

"Drink this."

Anything. I will drink anything. I will try anything. I will do anything to stop the pain of my skin melting where I lay. Anything...Anything...Make the heat go away. Make the heat go away...

There are those fingers again skillfully removing layers and layers of suffocating cloth from my skin. Fingers that glide along my chest and abdomen. Then, suddenly gone. I whimper his name with eyes round and begging silently for him to cool me with what little coolness he holds in his fingertips. And, his fingers return, covered in a bright blue potion.

Molten ice.

I squirm in pleasure from the feel of his hand on me again. I gasp at the sheer joy of feeling cold, if only for a second at a time. His hand dances across my scorching flesh, massaging the potion into my skin with brisk movements. He doesn't want me to get aroused again. I laugh sharply and he glares, seeing my thoughts in my eyes. It is already too late for that.

The wizard with the potion has all the power. He turns me unto my stomach and I press the side of my face into the comfort of the bed, fighting the desire to grind my hips and moan his name repetitively. His hand works on the plain of my back now, kneading the potion into the knots of my muscles and the line of my spine. I feel like I'm glowing. First hot then cold. Hot... Cold... His fingers are my only grasp on reality. Then, they too are gone.


His only reply is an incantation to rhythmic tapping of his wand against my back. The words he speaks are foreign to my ears as so many things in the Wizarding world still. His voice makes me shiver and groan. I gasp. He begins to blow softly upon my skin and the hair on my back feels as if they are being coaxed upright. Cool breaths of air cocoon me and I know I'm glowing this time.

"Rest. The incantation will need time to work. When it seals I will complete the process."

I awake to the scent of morning dew.

I awake to the feel of slow, sensual strokes of potion into my skin. It's oil based. Potions that are non-inducing and oil based are soothing potions. Soothing? Yes. I feel light headed. I'm floating. I am suspended between pleasure and pain. Balance. I wonder what happens if the scale is tipped? I wonder how long he will keep touching me this time. I want him to keep touching me.

I wonder if human males purr in pleasure?

"Don't stop...please."

Emerald and onyx. Fire and ice. Midnight and moonlight. Balance. I want to tip the scale in my favor. Merlin I need him. Do I deserve him though? Me, too young and all innocent in the things I ache for him to do, am I good enough for him? Serious thoughts are funny things. They weave webs within the mind. They block out all impulse. They leave doubts... I shift in agony at his touch. If I cannot have him then I cannot bear the torture. Why does healing have to hurt? Will I just be a child to this wizard forever? Remain the bane of his life forever? Harry Potter. Harry Potter who killed the Dark lord and was cursed. Harry Potter who gets the darkest of pleasure from the simplest touch of his hands.

Are all heroes meant to suffer in silence?

"Harry, I need to administer the potion properly. It should not be much longer. If I do not do it properly it will have no effect and you will be screaming in agony once again."

Agony. Agony from needing what I should not want.

"Then hurry. The sooner you are finished will be the faster I get to..."

Leave you. Not need you. Stop the burning ache that fills me with every stroke of your hand. Hand of a Potion Master. I'm addicted to the touch of your hands. I'm addicted to the soothing quality of your voice already. Why did you do this to me? Why did you let me see you as you are without the darkness?


I groan at the question in his voice. It is too much and not enough. What can he read in my eyes this time? What do you see when you look at me Potions professor? Twenty years that you are older? Twenty years that I am too young? I groan again as the dance against my chest stops. Don't stop... Don't stop... I didn't mean what I said... My erection is obvious and aching. Straining towards him. Need him. So...much.

"I'm finish."

I whimper involuntarily again. It's an odd sort of howl mixed with desire and need. Don't leave me this way... Don't leave me. Do you want me to beg? I'm burning up again. Maybe the fever is back. Maybe I'll pass out from the loss of oxygen.

"Please... I'm sorry... Please..."

Emerald meets onyx again. My fire is reflecting in his eyes.

"Please what Harry?"

Anything... Do anything. Do anything to stop the pain. Do anything to stop the ache...

His lips slowly descend and this time I really howl as I am sucked into the warm moisture of his mouth. I thrust just once. That is enough for the hands to hold my hips still unto the bed. He licks and I howl. He sucks and I howl. He swirls, graze, hum softly...and I am too far gone to howl anymore.

"I'm going to -"

Instead of stopping, he sucks harder, pulling my hips so I am swallowed deeper and touching the back of his throat. And I come so hard I think for a moment that I've passed out from the sheer intensity.

"Are you alright?" He licks his lips and I smile because I'm floating again.

"Stay with me? Like you did before. You don't have to be...naked. I just need you..."

He doesn't answer. He turns away. He uses the spell on himself again. I ground my teeth in frustration because I am not good enough to help. I fight the sting of tears again. I fight the shame of being who I am and what I represent to him. I fight the hurt because I did want to help. I wanted to touch him too.

I fall asleep to the image of desire burning in his eyes.

"Dumbledore has contacted me. We won the war. We can return you to Hogwarts again. Pomfrey is waiting in the Hospital wing for your arrival. If all goes well, the curse will be broken the proper way in not much time."

"That's nice."

"You could sound a bit more enthusiastic Potter."

"I know."

"We leave in an hour."

"Then call me when you wish for me to put my apparition skills to the test. Until then, I'll just pretend it's not morning and I'm asleep."


"Here. Drink this."

"What is it?"

"A combination of Dreamless and Calming potions. They need you to be asleep while they work on the incantation to break the curse. This will make you sleep longer."

"Why would I need your potion to sleep? I'm at Hogwarts now aren't I? You said they would remove the curse so quickly that I would barely notice. I would be well again in such little time that there is probably no need for you to help them. What? Don't you think they can do it Professor Snape?"

"Just drink the potion Potter. I do not have the time for this."


I drink the potion in one gulp and glare at him from my usual bed in the Hospital wing. Even with a background of morning sunlight he still looks ominous. His black cloak billows behind him as he turns and walks away. His curtain of ebony hair seems even less greasy and softer today. I will never be able to touch it and see if I am right.

Hates me does he? Well I hate him just as much.

I drift asleep with his glare and his scowl and the anger that makes his eyes cackle like little globes of lightning. I want to make his eyes dance for me again. I want him to touch me and make me better again.

I awake to a candle lit room and tingling all over.

The fever is back. The pain is back also except this time it comes as sharp shoots of agony ripping through my body and diminishing into the ever present tingles now. I am dying. Only death can feel so damning.

I shake with the tingles. I scream with the pain. I claw at my bare skin, wanting to rip into it and remove the source of my discomfort. I wonder if my blood will be red? I wonder if my skin is thick enough to hold the boiling beneath the surface? I wonder if spontaneous combustion is an option and can I achieve it without a spell and my wand?

There is the crawling beneath my flesh again. Tingling. Tingling to a crescendo and the boiling begins. I scream. I scream. I scream until I feel the tang of blood in my throat. I scream until my lungs fill and gurgle and I am spewing crimson unto the pillow beneath my head. It soaks and so does the bed. I am covered in blood.

Then there is the tingling again.

The itsy, bitsy spider is crawling in my flesh... The itsy, bitsy spider has invited all his friends... Now if one little fly should accidentally fall... would the itsy, bitsy spiders try to lure some more?

There are insects hatching from beneath my skin.

I scream, clawing at my arms and legs, watching as the bubbles of pain beneath my skin are ruptured to become hives of little insects that scurry out in droves. Beneath the short, ragged nails of my fingers I feel my flesh tear and lodge. My skin is paper thin and dry from the heat emitting from it. I can feel the heat beneath my hand. Of course I can feel the heat. My blood is boiling again.

I'm drowning in blood and tears. I'm choking. I'm being suffocated. I shiver. I tremble. I scream. I'm cold! I'm so cold. I can't feel my arms or my legs. Violent tremors rack my body, but amidst my screams there is no time to ponder the growing cold.

I can hear them by now. I can feel them. It is their icy breath that I feel. My skin is warm but I freeze and I know now that they are trying to get inside of me. They want to kill me from the inside out. This is no normal fever. Or is it that this is normal and the one before wasn't?

What is normal anyway?

Floating above the bed of blood, watching as the insects fight their way out of my body, hearing myself scream in a disjointed manner, what is normal anyway? Is this normal or does normal mean more pain and less screaming? Does normal bleed blood of red too? Does it have arms and legs and slits for nostrils? Am I normal or am I an abomination to the world of Muggles?

Why isn't he helping me?


My healer? My helper? Why isn't he here to make me sane?

Does he walk on two legs and hiss like a snake?

No. Maybe. Yes he does.

Then he killed you. Don't you remember? You tried to fight him. You tried to run. You couldn't. Your legs hurt. You fell into the snow and he aimed his wand at you with an evil laugh. He killed you. You died when the green light touched your skin.

I'm dead?

Of course. Harry Potter, the Boy-Who-Died-At-Last.

At last. At last. I should be happy. What is happiness again? Is it evil? Does it use you? Does it leave you angry and hollow? How can I be happy when I'm bleeding to death? Look there is blood everywhere. There is blood on the bed, blood on the pillows, blood already covering the ground.

Scourgify. Scourgify so I can return to my body.

"Albus he is getting worse."

"How can that be Pomfrey? He was well enough when Severus brought him in. What happened?"

"The curse. It is worse than we anticipated. It seems that it has been accelerated by my efforts to cure him. The chants won't work."

"Then perhaps it is time we enlist Severus' help again. His potions worked."

"No! Those potions were made with the intention of harm. I will not allow him to taint Harry with their evil. He should not have been granted the permission to use them in the first place."

"Ah, well Poppy I suggest you come up with a suitable cure yourself or it will not matter to me the methods that Severus enlists to cure our Mr. Potter. I will not allow him to die. Not after all that he has done."

He is gone. They sent him away. They will not let him touch me again. I am being punished for the crimes I committed. I am being punished because I killed a wizard who deserved to die. He was just a child. He was evil. He stored darkness in his green eyes and lightning scar. He caused havoc with his laugh. He deserved to die. He deserved to burn. I deserve to burn. Burn us both with the fire that consumed us. Let the maggots torment us as we tormented those before us.

Let us burn on the outside and freeze on the inside.

Cold. Hollow. Darkness. Moments of hell wrapped in colored paper and devious trappings. Wade through the lies and the anger. Lose me in the empty sheets of skin that rips from my body. Save me from the ever present, ever building pain that will not give me rest from the voices. Let me scream in agony.

Let me die. I cannot take this anymore.

"Harry? Madame Pomfrey what's wrong with him? Can't you do anything to make him stop screaming?"

"Ms. Granger, Mr. Weasely you should leave. Harry is not, may not be, well for a long time. He cannot have visitors in his current state."

They are here. They are haunting me. They will hurt you as they hurt me. Hermione. Ron. Don't let them possess you too.

"Harry? Harry... "

"Ms. Granger leave him."

"But he's in pain! Listen to him scream! Oh god what did they do to him?"

Hermione. Hermione they hurt me. Hermione, they wrench my flesh apart. They cause my blood to boil and my skin to flake. They are inside of me. I'm so cold. Hermione make them go away. They are here and they won't let me leave. They took my dark light away.

"Harry... Y...you'll be okay Harry. Madame Pomfrey and D...Dumbledore will make you better Harry. I promise I won't let you die like this. Do you hear me? I promise."

I'm already dead. I'm already dead. I've already died!

"We should leave him. Come you two. Until I adjust the incantation to cure him there is nothing we can do. I only hope that I will not be too late. There is only about eighteen hours left. Ah, well I will have to do my very best. Come now children. Leave him."

Hermione? Ron? Ron don't leave me! Don't let them take me! They'll kill me Ron. Listen. I can hear them whispering out their revenge. I can hear them Ron. Don't leave me alone with them!


"Harry, I'm going to take you to my quarters in the Dungeon. It will be safer to work on you there."


Where did you come from? They say you left. They said you wouldn't come back to haunt me again. I won't let you kill me! You bastard! I'll kill you first! I won't let you take me. I won't let you take me. I won't let you kill me again.

"Stop fighting me Harry. At least try to conserve your strength. I'm taking you with me no matter how much you scream and shout."


"Yes Harry. Now relax."

"They're coming to take me. They want me to die again. Can't die anymore. He killed me, isn't that enough? Didn't I do enough? Hurts. Everything hurts. Do you see them? They eat me alive. Make them go away. I can't fight them anymore."

"I know Harry. I'll do my best."

I scream again at the pain building inside me. I struggle in his arms as he balances me while running down moving flights of stairs. I twist and groan and hear my own voice echoing soundlessly in the silent corridors. The paintings gasp in succession as we fly by without making a sound. They whisper so loudly that their voices are like flies buzzing into my ear. And suddenly, I see the insects crawling from my flesh again. They make the incessant buzzing noise as they ooze from my open wounds. I bleed and bleed again as they fall.

"Here. Drink."

I clutch at the vial of potion and eagerly bring it to my lips to drink. A difficult task since he lays me upon his bed at the same time. I manage to drink it all anyway. Protection. Poison. It could be any and yet it matters not to me anymore. I don't care. Either will stop my torment.

"Petrificus Totalus!"


The vial falls with a crash as it breaks upon his floor, but the only sound I hear are the spell he uses to remove my clothes, then bind my arms and legs to the posts of the bed. If I could cry I would. If I could scream I would, but I cannot. I trusted him.

Evil, evil Potions master is he.

"Finite primus incantatum."

I can move but I am still bound naked upon his bed. Already I can feel the potion spreading through my body. Already the tingling is different. Already my skin is coming alive.

"Don't do this Severus. Please don't. Please..."

He exits the room and I scream.

I need him. I ache for him. He knows and yet he has decided to deny me. How is this better than torture? Isn't this just another means of torment? Isn't this just as bad if I need what I cannot have?

Shhhh... I hear his voice echoing in my head and my body reacts as if he is there, beside me. I can feel his breath gliding across my skin. Silk sheets beneath my body begin to be too much. Everything is driving me wild.

"Please... please... please," I chant squirming my aching body against the smoothness of the sheets. "Please... please don't let me do this alone."

But, my body doesn't listen to the reasoning of my mind and everything caresses my erection. Air. Movement. Even the sound of my own moans and whimpers. I pant in frustration again, fighting the desire of my body to buck frantically into the openness of the room.

I can taste blood. I am biting my lip so hard that my teeth causes lacerations, but even that cannot distract me long enough. I feel tears. They slide from my tightly closed eyes and along my cheeks silently as testimonies of my losing battle.

Please... please... Don't let me do this alone.

"Stop fighting the potion."

My eyes fly open and I bite my lip harder. He is standing beside me again. So close, I almost feel the warmth of his body. Silently I beg him with what little shame I do not have left in my hungry gaze.

Touch me... Please... Just once...

Do you want me to beg?

"Please... Please Severus..."


No. No Harry. Not this time. This time you win or lose your battle alone. This time you die as you deserved. From pain to pleasure. How sadistic of him.

True silence can only be achieved through the breakdown of important faculties. Catatonic. Dead. Where time means nothing but long stretches of continuous actions. Where breathing is just the movement in and out of important gases. From one state of existence to the next, sanity is what one makes of it.

"Stop it."

Stop the silence. Stop the sound of not screaming. Stop the lack of movement and the blank stare into emptiness. Stop the look of surrender glistening in emerald green eyes. Stop the non-existent state of nothingness without the agony of pain or need. Stop the disassociation of mind and body.

I literally feel my heart beat slowing in my chest.

"Finite incantatum." And I am transported to a tub full of a water-based potion containing floating blocks of ice.

"You are too much of a Gryffindor, Potter. If you cannot have something then you think you don't deserve it and you endure the punishment no matter how bad it may be. Very Slytherin too. Punish me while I deny you. The Sorting Hat may have made the correct decision but it must have indeed been very difficult for it. Here. You may as well drink this now."

Soft, soothing words. When has Severus Snape ever used soft words in Harry Potter's presence? Do I really have the power to frighten him? Does he really care enough for my silence to hurt him into action?

Lifted out of the tub, wrapped in a huge black towel, cradled against him as I drink a vial of potion that I've already tasted before. All I needed the entire time was this. To be so near him I can borrow his heat. To breath in so much of his scent of cinnamon and potions that I only forget when he is far away from me again. To be in his arms is all I wanted.

I feel so exhausted that I can barely manage to keep my eyes open. I feel him walk to his room again and lay me unto the bed. His warmth is gone and I whimper softly from the loss.

"Go to sleep if you can. Your fever will return in vengeance after a few minutes. I'll get the Molten Ice potion."

I'm already half way asleep and his words just soothe me more.

"Am I going to die?"

I awake to the scent of morning dew and the feel of slow strokes of his hand covered in the oil potion again.

"Not if I can help it Potter. Pomfrey is a little twit who believes in the black and white reality of light being the only cure for darkness. If I had left you much longer in her care the castle would still be filled with the sound of your incessant screaming and she would be no closer to finding a cure than she is now. It will take another few pockets of forever before she gets that incantation of hers right and yet she hardly seems worried."

"She may be worried. She just doesn't show it in the presence of her patients. It would scare us students every time we had to go there if she truly told us how serious our damages are," I point out softly. "Look at me. I could have had a heart attack every time, if I knew half the seriousness of most of my conditions."

He turns me over to lie on my stomach with my only reply being a grunt. Since I can't see into the black pools of his eyes anymore, I focus all my attention on the strokes of his hand upon my back. And Merlin it feels good to be stroked so intimately. His hands travels slowly from my neck, down the columns of my spine and over the rise of my bottom. Then the strokes fall along my inner thighs, down my calf and ankles.

I want to moan and gasp aloud, but I don't. I don't want him to deny me again. I would rather suffer in silence than be left to the torture without him.

Are all heroes are meant to die alone?

"Harry do you want me to stop? Am I hurting you? You're all tense now."

Tense? Gods yes. I seem to be in a perpetual state of longing when I'm with this wizard. No Severus. Don't stop. Please don't.

"I'm sorry. I'll...relax. Please don't stop." Need makes the mind conducive to begging I have discovered.

"Harry." His voice holds a warning that's very evident.

"I'm sorry. I don't know how to not react. Tell me how not to want you and I'll be willing to try it!"

Need leads to frustration and frustration leads to anger...

Instead of answering his hands slide up my inner thighs again and stop just short of the point at which I'd give anything for him to touch. I buck involuntarily into the bed and growl my frustration aloud again, because he is so close and yet he won't.

"Evil bastard!"

He laughs out loud and I am so shocked that I twist in the bed to see for myself if he really is laughing and that makes him laugh just a little more. And gods isn't he even more sexy when he laughs. Rip me apart from want, why not? Give me a taste of heaven while submerged in hell and see how long I can last. I groan in disgust at myself. How much more pitiful can I become?

A sudden stream of pain slices through my body and I scream in shock.

"You fool. I told you not to fight the potions. They can cause just as much harm as the curse itself." He's back to scowling again.

His hands resume the stroking though and soon I am lost again to the need to never have him stop.

"Stop squirming."

"I can't!" I glare at him as liquid heat spreads throughout my body.

"Would you rather I stop then?"

"Yes!" I retort but it is no sooner followed more passively, "No. Please don't."

His reply is to lengthen his strokes unto I am panting again and I know he's being spiteful because he can. I bite my lower lip again and clutch tightly unto the sheets between my fingers. It's so damn hard not to rut continuously into the bed that has my arousal trapped. I try not to breath too much because my breath begins to sound ragged even to my own ears.

"Your skin is so warm," He whispers, breaking my line of thought.

"Of course it's warm," I gasp through tightly locked teeth. "I feel like hell. When is this fever going to break? Shouldn't the curse be broken by now?"

His hands pause and I fight back the urge to whimper yet again.

"It was interrupted by Pomfrey's efforts. Three days of these potions would have been more than enough. Two days will just have to do now. You better hope it works Potter. You only have about ten hours left."

"I feel better already," I say with a little smile.

"That, Potter, is due to the potion's distracting effect," he says in what I could swear to be an amused voice. When his lips descend just inches above my ear and I feel the ghostly whisper of his breath, my mind immediately returns to my growing problem. "And my hands on you of course. You do seem to like it."

"You wicked bas-" I begin to growl but he interrupts with another whisper.

"Finish that sentence, Potter and you deal with the loss of both my hands and the potion."

I don't finish the sentence and his hands remain where they are. His lips disappear from beside my ears however when he returns to sitting upright again. I growl. He ignores me. We move on to the task of driving me insane.

"Stop. Oh god, stop," I gasp brokenly when I cannot stand his torture anymore.

His hands immediately abandon their path of stroking near the cleft of my butt cheeks. I turn in the bed so that I am lying on my back, with my eyes blazing and my erection impossible to ignore. I capture his hands in my own and fight the urge to wrap them around my aching cock. Instead, as an after thought, I pull myself up so that my face is just inches away from his. Then, I cup one of his cheeks in my hand and make sure that I don't break eye contact.

And Merlin, I could get off just from sitting this close and looking into the intensity of his gaze.

"Please don't do this to me. I don't have the...experience...to fight this. I can barely think right now. Don't make me have to endure this. I need you so badly right now. I won't settle for anything but you. No games! Please Severus..."

Alright, so the speech is not entirely oozing maturity, still when his lips graze my neck and he press tiny little kisses along my collarbone, I all but lose myself in the relief. I hug tightly unto him, running my fingers through ebony hair that is not at all greasy and every bit as soft as I imagined.

I need him so badly, I ache.

"If this is just the potion's influence then I will hex you into next week myself," He snarls none-too-nicely into my ear and I tighten my grip around his neck, afraid that he will come to his own senses too soon.

He stands and slowly removes his clothes before my avid gaze. Then he is beside me, holding me against his body and I try my hardest to melt completely into him. I feel almost starved for him. It's as if I suddenly remember how to breathe again and yet my breathing is ragged and broken as his mouth trails over my slightly glistening body. I wonder if the potion tastes like rain.

Oil and water. Is that what we are? Half oil, half water. We complete each other in an odd way?

All I know is that I need him more than I have ever needed anyone else before. Maybe this should scare me. Maybe, but it doesn't. This is right. I know it is. I know it is, with everything inside of me. I need him and he wants me and that's all that matters.

His hand closes around my length and I gasp as he strokes it in a rhythmic movement up and down. My hips thrust upwards with every stroke and I'm sure he can feel the trembles that courses through my body. Merlin I love it when he looks at me. I'm not sure how much longer I can last.

Somehow I convey this message to him without words, because his hand stills and I moan.

Pulling his hand away I bring his fingers to my lips and kiss each of them before moving on to the hollow cleft at his throat, then the thin chest. I want to taste every part of him at once and for a moment I wonder if I can go mad from the desire. Quick nips...soft licks...light kisses...and I'm lost within the sensation. I breathe in his scent and drown in the deep ebony pools of his eyes as he gazes at me. I wonder what I must look like from his point of view. Are my lips red? Do my eyes glow? Am I breathing ragged again?

I glide along his body with my teeth and tongue and lips leaving a trail and I wonder if I can brand him with my touch. No one else to touch him. No one but me to taste him. No one. Only me...if only for this moment.

His arms wrap around my waist and I see his half smile as I lay on top pressed into him. I gaze at him half consumed and still mostly delirious, I think...and I wonder if he sees my desire on my face.

He murmurs a wandless spell so softly that I have to read his lips to realize that it's the summoning spell for a potion I don't know. Somehow, he catches it with one hand, and his eyes still locked with mine. He opens it and shifts so suddenly that I'm lying on my back, looking up at him before I am fully aware.

"Turn around," he says softly.

Then I understand what the potion is.

"No I want to see you," I protest but he shakes his head slowly.

"Not this time. It will be easier for you..."

A cold shiver runs down my spine and I know that there is fear reflecting in my eyes. I shake my head frantically and he smiles sadly. I can see his impressions of me reflecting in his eyes. Yes, I am an innocent, despite all my bravery.

"I won't hurt you," he says.

"I know," I whisper back. The knot of fear that had developed in the pit of my stomach loosens immediately. I smile at him. "I just want to see you."

And maybe, that's all there ever is to it.

He concedes by trailing little kisses along my neck. I entangle my fingers in his long hair and watch as streams of black flow from between them. This time it is his body that is pressed into mine. I move my erection across his and listen to the groan that seems to be pulled from somewhere deep within him. I feel all jagged inside, as if there are emotions within that are fighting to surface, yet I feel calm.

The art of perfecting perfect.

Amidst the distraction of his lips, he raises my still rocking hips and shoves two pillows beneath each of them. Then once again, I am reminded of the potion he has summoned because three of his fingers are coated with it and I feel his hand slide between our bodies. He pulls away slowly from my grinding erection, even though to me I am so beyond rational thoughts at this point that, on my own, I know I myself would never have the strength.

I feel his finger tease my opening and I begin to squirm. Gently, his slips a finger into me and I think I gasp but I don't hear because his finger moves slowly in and out. I squirm again because it feels strange and it's right and I want more. Then there is a second finger added to the rhythm he's tattooing inside me and finally there is the third. The entire time his mouth never stops its trail of reassuring kisses and licks.

When his lips stop, so does his fingers. I barely have a moment to register this before his gaze returns to mine. I want to melt. I think I do. A part of me deep inside burn to know how many other men saw him this way...all perfect and hard and looking like liquid sex.

My angel, tainted by the dark.

And suddenly, he hooks his fingers...and I howl as he brushes something sensitive inside of me that shoot sparks behind my eyelids.

I don't think I can take any more. I already feel on the brink of going crazy.


Somehow he understands what I'm asking for. He coats his hand in the thick transparent potion again and I watch enthralled as he wraps his fingers around his own erection. Suddenly, I want to be the one to prepare him. Without a second thought, my fingers close around his. Almost hesitantly, he pulls away his own hand and then, all there is to feel is him.

I want to stroke him the way he did me. I want to take him the brink and pull him back. I want to hear him moan and I want to see abandonment in his onyx eyes. Instead something in his expression stops me and I only allow myself a long stroke or two before I release him.

He re-corks the potion, cleans his fingers with another wandless spell, then cups my face in the palm of one of his hands.

"Still warm," he whispers.

Still feverish. Still cursed. Still delirious, maybe. Still.

He pushes my knees up against my chest and I automatically hold them in place as he positions himself against my entrance. Black flames burn into my own gaze. I wonder, is this the moment when I should object or forever hold my peace? Too late. I need him. I ache...so much. In one fluid motion he pushes into me and I release my legs to wrap them around him, pulling him deep inside swiftly as I thrust my hips up for more access.

"Not so fast!" he hisses, but it's too late for warnings because he's already being buried to the hilt and everything within me throbs to his body's tempo.

In truth, it does hurt as I feel my body stretch to accommodate his intrusion but, the sheer feel of him is enough to cancel out all the discomfort. He lays still, giving me time to adjust to the sensation of having him fill me, but even that becomes too much and I begin to squirm again.

He hisses again, taking the hint, and begin to thrust slowly in and out. I gasp, wrapping my arms around him and burying my face at his neck.

The world somehow feels as if it slows to the rhythm we build as he begins to thrust faster, hitting that spot inside me once in a while that makes me gasp and howl. My hips thrust up to meet him, on their own. Lost in my own world of broken sounds I feel anchored unto the ragged breathing he does in my ear and somehow he finds my leaking cock between our bodies. His strokes in unison with our body is enough to send me spiralling. Already covered in a thin sheen of sweat, my body refuses to fight too hard to stop my crash into sweet oblivion.

Amidst a scream, and maybe tears, I come all over us. His arms tighten around me, cradling me against him as I shake with my release. Gazing into his eyes again I wonder at the swirl of emotions I see flickering across the surface, before he tears his away and then he comes within me with such force that this time it's me that clings to him as he coats my insides.

We lay together, trying to get our breath even and the strength to move again.

He summons his wand and cleans us with a spell as he slips out of me. Dropping the wand at the side of the bed, he hovers above me, resting on his elbows and he locks his gaze with mine again. His breath feels cold as it cools the light sweat that still glistens on my body.

"Your fever has broken," he says softly with a sadness I've never seen before reflecting in his eyes.

I reach out to run my fingers through his hair again. Wanting to memorize the details of his face and the way his long lashes guard liquid pools of deep emotions.

"Thank you...Severus."

He wraps his arms around me with a sigh then reverses our positions so that I am lying on top of him with my head against his chest and our bodies entwined together.

I never want this moment to end.

"Go to sleep. You'll need the rest. Tomorrow will be a very busy day for you."

I lie awake for a few more minutes and I know he's doing the same. Tomorrow will be busy. The curse has been lifted. Tomorrow he will hate me again. Tomorrow I will return to being Harry Potter the hero and he will hate me because I'm a Gryffindor and he is the Head of Slytherin.

My insides crumble at the realization and I press a kiss to the centre of his chest.

I want this moment to last forever.


"Weasely, pay attention! Ten points from Gryffindor."

I glare at him for Ron's sake and he glares right back at me with as much hatred as he ever did before. I wonder, is that desire I see in his eyes? No? Perhaps I am delirious again.

"Harry, are you alright?"

No I died a thousand deaths in the space of seventy-two hours and now the world moves on and I am The-Boy-Who-Lived-Again. Balance... Perfect when achieved yet so hard to maintain.

"Hermione, Ron, go. I need to speak to Professor Snape for a while. I'll meet you in the Great Hall in about half an hour."



The door to the Potions classroom closes behind them. The Dungeons should be void of students by now since it is just about time for lunch. I mutter the strongest silencing spell I know, realizing that he could break it with a simple wave of his own wand. Wand hand. Potion master hands.

"Potter, you are four months away from your N.E.W.T.S. examination. If there is something you still do not know by now, I severely doubt that I will be able assist you at this late stage."

I approach him with determination evident on my face.

"Look at me."

"Potter, this is neither the time nor the place for your nonsense."

I smile as my fingers connect with the sharpness of his cheek. I turn his head so that his gaze locks with mine. There are those midnight eyes again that I like to see ablaze.

"You've been ignoring me."

"I hardly call this ignoring you Potter."

My smile widens a little more. He may be using his most effective sneer, but he still does nothing to remove his chin from the grasp of my fingers or his eyes from the light of mischief in my eyes.

"I want to kiss you," I say softly.

His expression doesn't change in the slightest. Spy. How did he learn to hide his emotions so bloody well?

"Why? You were cursed Potter. You were delirious. You spent the whole three days muttering your thoughts aloud to yourself as you slipped between conscious and unconsciousness. What do you believe to achieve now? I assure you that everything I did had to be done under the situation and I was granted permission from Dumbledore himself. However, if you desire it, I will turn in my resignation to the Headmaster. There is no need to stoop to unscrupulous levels."

I run my index finger along the thin lines of his lips and I try to memorize it in my mind. My eyes never leave his.

"You would leave if I asked you to?"

"Of course Potter, I just said that. Don't state redundant points. The potions I used were hardly legal. The curse he used was not either but I am willing to bear the consequences of my action."

He tugs his face from my hand then gathers up the scrolls of his desk and other belonging with a swish of his wand and a quick spell. Before I can blink enough times properly, he is already heading towards the door. Loyal to a fault. Even if it is to his own downfall.


He stops instantly at my plea. Obligation, he implied in his explanation, but obligation does not entail the reaction he gives when I beg. Perhaps he is not so untouchable to me?

"I just want to kiss you...I didn't before...I wanted to because I realized that maybe it is the one thing you would allow me to do. I swear I'm not trying to trick you. Please just let me...if you won't let me do anything else."

He turns and my breath catches in my throat from anticipation. Damn it! I could be expelled for trying to seduce a professor. He could be fired for taking advantage of the wizarding world's hero.

"Come here."

I go. He tilts my head with the tip of his fingers. I wonder what he's looking for in the depth of my eyes this time. Just in case, I open my thoughts in honesty to Occlumency.

"Just a kiss?"

I want to nod. I want to take what I can get. I want to be satisfied with just a taste of his lips but I can't because it wouldn't be enough. The nod and the yes seem to be stuck in a loop in my head.

"How about a kiss now and perhaps we can proceed less quickly this time?"

My reply is to press my body against him as his lips descend upon mine. I lose myself in eagerness at the skills of his tongue and his patience. I need this. I need him. I miss being so close to him.

I may not be enough for him. To him I could still be Harry Potter, the bane of his life, but I want to change that. I want him to see me the way I see him. I want him to see me without the darkness and without the disguises. I killed a wizard with an evil spell and he cursed me with the vengeance of the dead.

I caused a lot of innocent people to die as they fought for justice in my name. I don't deserve to be happy. I don't deserve him. I don't deserve the touch of an angel or the skills of a master. I don't deserve him. I know this and it hurts. Yet he's kissing me and holding me and making me feel like I deserve everything as much as he does. We are tainted by the things we have endured together. We are tainted so only we know what the other deserves.

What would I give to never have to let him go again?

Anything... Anything is better than the pain.


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