A few days more
Month, 1st 2012
Fourth year at Hogwarts
"A few days more" is the sequel to "Twenty-one days" – read and review this first or you wouldn't understand all that happens in this story.
The fourth year Slytherins and Gryffindor have survived their imprisonment in the potions classroom situated in the dungeons. How will they go on in all-day life after their survival? How will they manage to reintegrate into the castle's routine and their classes? How will they be able to go back to life at all? Watch how those who survived fight for their lives and for their peace.
Did you see Severus alive at the end of 'The deathly hallows'? no?
Do you think I would have had him died if I had written those books? no?
Then you know that 'Harry Potter' does not belong to me … nor does Severus … regrettably …
But Hereweald Hrothgar does …
M – Not suitable for children or teens below the age of 16
Uhm … ok … I have to admit … English is not my language by birth … so … please do not kill me while reading … neither for the bad English I use, nor for what I am writing …
please take also a look at the profile of " " and the story "... and sit a while with me ..."
Story will contain references to child abuse.
Child abuse is a really, really serious and evil thing, and whenever you meet someone, child or adult, who shows any signs – whichever - of once being abused, then try to help … there are too much humans in our world who are or had been mistreated.
what does not mean I am not as evil as I pretend to be …^.~ … believe me - I am …
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Previously in A few days more
Well, he wasn't really sure if Harry had heard his last sentences – the boy was already sleeping and he took a deep breath. Yes, it really was time that the boy learned more about these things. Maybe he'd get a bible for the boy.
He didn't read in the bible every day, not even every week. He hadn't actually read in the bible for a long time, but he knew what was written in it, and he knew that it weren't nonsense words. What was written in the bible had a lot of power and it could be dangerous if people had the wrong interpretation. The muggle catholic church and even the Lutheran churches were the best examples for the dangers of wrong exegeses.
Well, he'd have a word with Adam about that – and surely not the first word, seeing that the healer was the only person whom he talked about such things from time to time.
After all, that bloody man was actively living in a community and they were providing children with knowledge about God, the bible and other things – not to mention with quality time for children in form of a lot of activities that helped them growing into confident and responsible adults.
Getting off the armchair he made sure that the boy was warm and that the small light on Harry's nightstand wouldn't turn off during the night. Warmth and light were some of the things the boy had missed for years, beside of food, sleep and rest – and it was one of the few things he could provide him with, even though there were enough things he wouldn't be able to give – like love, for example, and like belief or a life with God, because he didn't have this himself in the first place, because the Lord would never accept him, would never forgive him.
He had done unspeaking crimes. Not to mention that – you cannot serve two Lords, and many years ago he had chosen his Lord, the Dark Lord – not God, the Lord.
A few days more
Day twenty-seven – eighteenth of October – Friday
About learning, and about realizing
"You need to write a speech, Harry." He said, entering their quarters and approaching the dining table where his children were sitting, discussing one thing or another and for the moment he didn't care what it was. "Concerning your participation in the tournament – as much as I do dislike this participation. And you too, Victor."
He just came from Albus' office, and the headmaster had told him that the ministry had decided – there would be celebrations on October, 31st, during the feast of Halloween, and the champions were to hold speeches. Nothing he was looking forwards to as he knew how unsure Harry was when it came to not only crowds, but to anything official too – and he knew that it would be official as not only the ministry would be present, but several reporters too. And Fudge, the idiot, expected speeches.
Not to mention that he was against that bloody tournament anyway, especially against Harry partaking in it – and Victor too.
"I haf told you that …" The boy started and he scowled down at the teen, effectively stopping him with his threatening gaze.
"No discussions, Victor." He growled angrily. "I expect you to write this speech. We will deal with anything else at a later point." He then added, looking at the boy pointedly and he was sure that Victor knew exactly well what he expected of him.
"Yes, sir." The young man answered after a moment with an unhappy sigh.
"Very good. Charms it is then, household spells, to be precise." He then said, waving his wand to clear the table.
"The only solution I can think of right now, would be using an imperius." Albus said after he had told him of the conversation he'd had the evening before with his newest student, Victor Krum. "But that would mean using an unforgivable and never mind the intentions, it would end in the user being sent to Azkaban."
"If it is the only way of keeping Harry alive in the end, then I will use it." He growled, darkly. "Because it would not only keep Harry save but Victor from fulfilling his vow either – which he doesn't want to fulfil, just by the way."
"You can't, Severus." Minerva said, shaking her head.
"You have heard Albus, Minerva." He growled angrily at the woman. "There is no other way! Mr. Krum has sworn this oath, an unbreakable vow to hand Harry over to Karkaroff during the tournament and Mr. Krum cannot go against the unbreakable vow, it is simply impossible, never mind how much he wishes. That boy is ready to commit suicide just to keep himself from fulfilling the oath he had sworn."
"Well, this is one of the reasons as to why I have always been against banning these three spells." Albus sighed and he scowled at the old man. He wasn't interested in what Albus thought about the unforgivables being banned or other political views of one or another minister, he wanted to have a solution, and preferably one that would not have him ending up in Azkaban – what apparently was impossible. "Were it a legal spell still, then we could use it to keep Mr. Krum from fulfilling his vow. Why has he sworn this oath anyway?"
"Because his headmaster had made him, Albus." He growled, shaking his head. "What do you think? Surely a teen cannot just go against his headmaster, and surely not against a headmaster such as Karkaroff. I am sure that – the blood quills, are just one of his means to make sure that his will is done. It is the evil that men do, adults, and the children have to pay for it. Karkaroff is a coward and he has no problem with using children to ensure his safety.
"I do see your point, Severus." Minerva said. "But anyway, you can't. Imagine what it will do to Harry if you get sentenced to a lifelong stay in Azkaban!"
"Rather will I have the boy being unhappy because of that than losing him to death!" He growled at the woman. Did Minerva not understand that Harry's life was at risk?
"He won't be just unhappy, Severus!" Minerva said, adding to her words with hitting her palm at the table in front of her and he lifted his eyebrow. "Do you even realize how much Harry needs you? How much Harry loves you? If you end up in Azkaban, then Harry will be destroyed too. You are his only focus, Severus."
"Minerva is right, Severus." Filius said and he scowled at the charms teacher. "Someone else will need to do this."
"Do you really think that I will trust anyone with my son, Filius?" He asked. "Don't feel offended, but that's ridiculous, of course I won't."
"Harry has just gained a father, for once in his life there's something good." Filius said. "I just as well could do the unforgivable and I have no child I left behind. And I would be ready to do it."
"And I say no." He finally said. "This child had enough adults around him who didn't live up to their responsibility."
"And your responsibility is not to get yourself arrested, Severus, but to remain with the child." Albus said, trying to make his point, even though he knew very well what Albus' point was.
Of course he knew that Harry wouldn't be – just unhappy.
But rather did he have the boy grieving than being dead.
"I won't gamble with my son, Albus." He said, getting off his chair. "And I won't trust anyone with my son either. I will do the imperius the moment the tournament starts." And without waiting for another idiot reply from the man he turned and strolled out of the headmaster's office, left the three others behind
He waved his wand a second time and a box floated over to the table where he lowered it down at the wooden surface and a moment later one thing after another floated out of the box until they were all placed on the table and the box was empty.
"There are different items, ladies and gentlemen, and I expect all of you to take one of these." He then said, placing his hands at the backrest of Harry's chair that stood in front of him.
He watched the children looking unsurely for a moment before Draco finally reached out to take the potions book that was laying amongst the items.
"You are not only allowed to take whatever you want, Harry, I even expect you to take something from these items." He softly said into the boy's ears, leaning down at him a bit, after a few moments, and after Hermione had taken the knitting needles just at the same time when Theodore had reached out for a cup. The boy looked into the cup and then wrinkled his nose when realizing that it was a dirty cup.
Slowly – and clearly unsurely – Harry reached out and took a map that was clearly the map of England, and patting the boy's shoulder he realized that – Albus, as well as Minerva and Filius, were indeed correct, because clearly the child needed him, and he needed him out of Azkaban. But at the same time he knew that he just couldn't gamble with the child's life.
Enough adults had failed the child, the Dursleys, Albus even, Minerva, the mutt, the wolf – and he himself most of all. He himself had failed the boy most of all, because he should have seen it from the very beginning on. But he had allowed jealousy and hate to rule over not only his actions, but over his common sense too. He of all people should have seen the signs, but he hadn't because of blind hate – and it had been Harry, the child, who had suffered because of it, who had nearly died because of it, who was still suffering because of it.
Ronald took a cup that missed the handle and Adrian took a teddy bear that missed an ear.
One by one the children took the items on the table, broken things, dirty things and things that missed pages or parts, until none was left, and until each child had one item sitting on the table in front of them.
The large dining table had become their – classroom, for the lack of a better term, because it was a table large enough so that all of them could comfortably sit around it, so that they had even enough room to write on it, and it was a friendly place. Of course he could have added a classroom to their quarters, neither Albus nor the castle would surely be against this if they needed it – but somehow the dining table seemed to fit for this much better.
"Hermione." He started and the girl looked up at him, expectantly. "You have just shortly moved out of your parents' house and now your mother is visiting this afternoon – in half an hour, to be precise, and you still need to cook, to clean the floors, and to lay the table – not to mention that you have still not finished the scarf you have started to knit for her birthday which is today. How do you get your knitting needles to work so that you have time to do other things?"
There was a silence so deep, he was sure that he would be able hearing a needle falling to the floor, and every single of his students looked at him as if he had grown a second head suddenly, Harry even turning in his chair, seeing that he was standing behind the boy, so that he could look up at him with owlishly blinking eyes. He lifted his eyebrow expectantly at the girl, ignoring the shock he – apparently – had caused his students, even though he couldn't understand how they could be so shocked, and a moment later the girl seemed to wake.
"Uhm." Hermione said. "I don't know a spell that would start the needles to knit by themselves. And there's no Latin expression for it either, is there?"
"No, there is indeed not." He said. "You just take your wand." He then added, waving his hand at the girl to dare her pulling out her wand and to point it at the needles. "You point it at the needlework, and then you just will them do move and to do their work. It won't be easy, but try it during the lesson. However, I expect you to stop the moment you feel dizzy, tired or in any other way ill. Draco." He then went on with the lesson, stepping behind Ronald who was sitting opposite Draco, so that he could look at his godson during his task.
The boy looked up at him, lifting the book for a moment as if to show him that – he had taken the book – and he smiled at the boy.
"You need the receipt for the forgetfulness potion." He then said, pointing at the book.
"I won't need that book for it, I know it by heart." Draco answered. "It's been the potion from our potions exams in our first year."
"I want you to look the receipt up anyway." He just said, watching Draco searching for the receipt. And well, seeing that Draco was well versed when it came to potions and potions books, the boy of course had soon found it, but then wrinkled his nose at the stained pages round that area of the book.
"Well – let us suppose that you don't know the receipt by heart. You – just accidentally of course – have poured coffee over one of my most expensive potions books, let's say – the book of Venenatus – and I have found out who the culprit was who did this – and now you desperately need to brew this particular potion so that I would forget about it. How do you get the page clean?"
"Since when would you suggest something like that as a solution instead of taking responsibility over what I have done, uncle Severus?" The boy asked and he sighed.
"Draco." He said, lifting his eyebrow at the boy. "I'm just trying to see it from your viewpoint."
"Well, if I get these pages clean, then I don't need to brew the potion anymore, because then I get the pages of the other potions book clean too – what clearly will safe my life, because forgetfulness potion or not, you will find out anyway and then I'd be just dead."
"You might be correct in this, Draco." He agreed. "Anyway – how do you get the pages clean?"
"I use a simple evanesco." Draco answered, shrugging his shoulders.
"Do it." He said, waving his hand at the book – and the boy did.
A moment later he was sitting in front of a blank page, a startled "oh, damn" on his lips.
"Language, Mr. Malfoy." He said. "Now, can you tell me why you have now a blank page?"
"Because the evanesco has deleted everything, not only the dirt but the letters too." Draco said. "And stop laughing, you two. I've never had a book with stains because I take care of books."
"I'm not laughing, I'm chuckling." Theodore said, trying to stop.
"I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing with you." Harry chuckled, causing Draco to laugh too. Hermione and Emma both looked bored and rather annoyed, as though they had known what would happen and suddenly he realized that, never before had he known the students in his house as well, as he knew them now.
Of course he had known his Slytherins while he had been their heads, and he still knew most of them, knew their families, knew their troubles, and knew their strengths. But he didn't knew them as well as he knew his new students, these students in his new house. He knew them as if – he knew them as if they were his own.
"The evanesco spell vanishes everything from the pages that doesn't belong there, the scripture included." He said, placing his hand on Ronald's shoulder, startling the boy who looked up at him, questioningly, and he squeezed his shoulder for a moment. Because this child too, as troublesome as he was, he was his child, in one way or another. "You need to just concentrate on removing the stains without a spell, Draco. Try it, but again – I expect you to stop your attempts the moment you start feeling dizzy, ill, or tired. Ronald – Professor McGonagall is visiting for tea and you do not wish to disgrace yourself with offering a cup without a handle to your transfiguration professor."
"I use a reparo." Ronald shrugged.
"Do it." He challenged the boy, and Ronald indeed pulled out his wand and waved it, saying "reparo", but of course nothing happened. The teen looked up at him, perplexed and helplessly, and patted his shoulder for a moment.
"You may use a reparo if you have all the shards, Ronald." He then said. "This cup is missing its handle since many years and most likely the handle doesn't even exist anymore, in this case, a simple reparo won't work. Again, you need to repair the cup with magic alone, without a spell. Try it, to will a handle on the cup – or part of the cup to form a handle – but stop the moment you feel tired, ill or dizzy. Theodore. Your girl friend is visiting."
There were whistles and "huhh"s as well as a "Theo!" coming from the other children and he shook his head, ignoring Theodore's face becoming a nice shade of red. "She is actually already sitting at the table in your living room and you have the cup for her tea in your hand – when you notice that it is dirty. It is too late to turn and get another cup, and using a spell would only show her that you have a dirty cup in your hand – what are you doing now?"
"Uhm – seeing that none of the regular spells have worked with the others, I guess I need to try and get it clean with a wordless evanesco." The boy said and he nodded his head.
"Do it, but stop if you feel dizzy, tired or ill. Harry, you have a map of England laying in front of you. I however do ask you to look for a place you would like to visit during the Christmas holidays – any place that is not in England."
"That's easy." The boy said, looking up at him with large eyes and nearly a gleaming face. "I'd like to visit Norway, and the Fjords, and … my aunt and uncle have taken Dudley to Norway and Dudley has told of it for months and months and for years and …"
"Then it is time that we do indeed visit Norway." He said, stepping back behind he boy and placing his hand at his son's shoulder, trying to somehow anchor the boy that seemed to get close to a heart attack. "Do show me where exactly you would go within Norway, on that map."
"You really mean it?" The boy asked, getting still but looking up at him with startled large eyes, the green becoming brighter than it had ever been.
"Have I ever lied to you, Harry?" He asked back. "I do mean it, we will visit Norway during the Christmas holidays if you so wish. And now show me where exactly you would like to go – on this map."
"But – but it's a map of England." Harry said, looking at him, startled.
"I know that it is." He answered, seriously.
"But – but, I'm not allowed to … y'know …" The boy started, unsurely, clearly being reminded of a lot of situations he'd lived through with his family – not being allowed one thing or another while knowing that he couldn't help what he was, a wizard.
"I do know that you are not allowed to use magic for the time being." He said, turning the map so that a blank parchment was laying at the table in front of the boy. "And I do not expect you to use magic at all. I expect you to simply show me where exactly you would like to go." He then added, handing the boy a pencil.
"I see, geography isn't your speciality." He said, a few moments later, but knowing that there had been enough things in the boy's life which he had never learned because he'd never gotten the chance from his relatives to learn, because he'd been kept from visiting school before he had come to Hogwarts, he also knew that it wasn't his son's fault – and with a wave of his wand he turned the map and then changed the map of England into the map of Norway.
"That will do, or we would end up in Italy instead of Norway." He then said, running his hand through Harry's hair. "Adrian." He then said.
"I know, the ear." The boy said, pressing the teddy bear protectively to his chest while looking at him, with his dark brown eyes as large as Harry's always got and for a moment he wondered – which boy had learned this habit from the other or had they both always looked as owlishly as they did right now?
"Indeed." He answered. "You got a teddy bear – but he's missing an ear, what do you do to mend it?"
"Professor Flitwick had shown us the reparo already, but I'm sure that I can't use it 'cause the bear's ear is missing, isn't it?" The boy asked, looking him up and down as if he had the teddy bear's ear hidden somewhere beneath his robe.
"It is indeed missing completely, and therefore you are right, you can't use this spell." He then said. "You will need to do this without a spell and by having your magic replacing the ear."
"But … but how?" The boy asked, looking up at him startled and scared, Adrian surely fearing that he would fail him.
"Close your eyes, Adrian." He then said, going down to one knee in front of the boy so that he was at eyelevel with the child. "And now feel with your fingers over the spot where the ear should be. That is right, Adrian, relax, you can do nothing wrong with this. And now try to feel your own magic, the way it is pounding through your body, try to see the colours of your magical core … that's right, child. And now you try to will your magic to do your biddings, try to ask your magic to grow an ear on the teddy bear's head."
Looking at the boy's face, tight and so much a picture of concentration, Severus suppressed a snort of laugher with some difficulty only. The way the child looked he actually could imagine Adrian asking his magic to do that and he wouldn't even be surprised if he had tried it already during the tasks he had set for the other children.
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At the end of the lesson Ron realized that Snape used a totally different approach on charms lessons than Flitwick had, but he had learned some really useful things and now he could remove stains, repair objects, clean and press his clothes, and he could shrink and un-shrink things. He had learned how to wrap a box of pralines and he had learned how to change maps, and he had learned to do all of these things without using a spell, but by willing his magic to do the things.
He had however learned something else too.
When Snape had placed his hand on his shoulder, then he'd been startled at first, not knowing why Snape would do such a thing because he had never before done that. But he had suddenly realized that Snape indeed didn't hate him, because people who hated other people wouldn't touch them the way Snape had, would they?
Snape had touched him the way his dad would.
His dad would place his hand on his shoulder or on his back if he were unsure, or if he were to solve one thing or another, or just because his dad wanted to say – "I love you", because surely he was old enough for his dad to say such a thing, he wouldn't want his dad saying such a thing anymore, he wasn't a baby, after all. But by placing his hand on his shoulder or on his back, his dad would say the same, especially if it was in such a warm and friendly way.
And now Snape had done this.
He still wasn't sure what he should feel towards Snape.
Snape had done everything in his power to make it easier for all of them, and for him, Ron, too. And Snape didn't call him Weasley anymore, but he called him Ronald. Not Ron, but Ronald. But well, he didn't call Theo Theo either, but Theodore. And he didn't call Ginny Ginny, but Ginevra. So, of course he would call him Ronald and not Ron.
And Snape had talked to him too, and more than once, and he'd been friendly, always. Serious, and strict, but friendly, and he'd always kept his promises.
Snape had created a new house for them – something he actually was glad for – and Snape had given them a new home, a new place to sleep, and to eat, and to live, so that they wouldn't have to part ways after they had become so close during the time in the dungeons classroom. They all could stay together and somehow he knew, he felt, that this was important. And Snape had made it possible.
Snape had kept them, all of them, and especially Harry, alive, even though Harry had been so close to death. And Snape had not only kept them alive, but he'd kept them sane too – and he'd made it as easy for them as possible. Even now. Snape could easily say that they needed to visit classes, that they had to partake in the all day routine of the castle. It would even be something he had expected Snape to do, to throw them back to their prior life and to abandon them. But Snape hadn't.
Snape took the time to care for them, and to teach them himself after the disaster with Moody and with Creighton, didn't trust any of the other teachers, and he showed patience and care towards them – not to mention that he always seemed to know what exactly they needed, and not to mention that Snape used an entirely different teaching style than he had in the past.
Gone was the greasy git of an unfair bastard, replaced with a strict and with a severe teacher, but with a fair and with a caring teacher – and he didn't know what to do anymore.
On one hand – it was Snape, wasn't it? It was still Snape!
But on the other hand – he wanted to like this new Snape while at the same time he didn't know how, or why, or if it was the right thing to do. What if he now started to like this Snape and then got into trouble with the other students because they didn't like Snape? But was it even right for them to not liking Snape because they didn't know Snape the way they did? And maybe it had been the same in the past? Maybe they had wronged Snape while disliking him?
Because maybe Snape hadn't changed, and maybe Snape had been the way he was now, back then too, and they had just never seen it because they hadn't known Snape the way they knew him now? After all, Snape had been the house of Slytherin, and he had learned that there were a lot of children like Harry, who didn't have such a good home life because they didn't want to become the new mini-death eaters. And maybe Snape had been for them what he was for him and the others now? And so Snape hadn't changed but his priorities had changed only? And now they were in his focus?
But what if he started to like Snape now, and then Harry would get angry at him again because of it because of what Snape had done to Harry in the past? Harry had suffered so very much under Snape's hate in the past. How could he now start to liking Snape without betraying his friend? But Harry wasn't hating Snape anymore. Harry had started to love Snape, and Harry definitely needed Snape, and they were father and son now.
A strange thought, he wondered for a moment, Snape being a father, and Snape being Harry's father.
But that was what both had wanted, and still wanted.
Wasn't he just nurturing his own hate he had build up for years? And didn't he just want to go on hating Snape, so that he didn't have to admit that maybe he had been wrong? Didn't he just want to go on hating Snape, because it was so much easier to continue hating him instead of giving it a try, and giving it an effort and to change it?
Sighing he got off the sofa and went towards the study Snape had gone into half an hour ago, most likely to grade one or another essay, or to work on lesson plans for the week, or something else. Since Snape was their head of house, they had been closer to a teacher than ever before, and he'd started to realize that a teacher didn't just teach them, but that after the lessons a teacher didn't have a free time, but was to grade their essays, had to plan for the lessons, had to think about where they stood and how he could teach them things.
"You are still not to do magic." He heard Snape saying and for a moment he started to turn and leave, realizing that Harry was with Snape, but then curiosity took the upper hand and he approached the door, stood in the doorway – because he knew, he better didn't hide to listen on their conversation but approached them – or at least the room – openly.
"But how am I to follow the lessons then?" Harry desperately asked. "I'll be far behind in doing magic the moment Madam Pomfrey will finally allow it!"
"You won't." Snape calmly said – something he surely wouldn't have done in the past, giving a calm answer to Harry. "That's why I asked you to visit me in the evenings. Now, come here, child."
For a moment he was sure that Harry would throw a tantrum upon being called a child, but then he watched Harry actually calming down, even smiling at Snape, while obeying and approaching the man who sat on the sofa.
"Sit." Snape simply said while pulling Harry down until his friend sat beside Snape on the sofa, and then Snape pulled Harry down until he lay with his upper body on Snape's lap, his head leaning on Snape's right arm – and he blinked startled. Of course he'd seen Snape holding Harry like this – but that had been back then, when Harry had been so close to death.
"And now close your eyes, you foolish child." Snape said, while running his left hand over Harry's face. "And just like Adrian, try to feel your magical core. Relax your mind the way I have shown you during occlumency, and relax your muscles the way I have shown you during physical education. What colours do you see?"
"Green." Harry softly answered. "A soft emerald green, and velvet black, and they're dancing with each other."
"Dancing." Snape huffed. "How very interesting. I will need to be careful so that you won't wind me around your fingers. What you see are the magical strands – the emerald green symbolizes your magical core, that seems to be entangled with mine already. Can you feel the magic – dancing?"
"I can feel how calm your black strand of magic is, or whatever it is." Harry answered, sounding happy and peaceful and he slipped down along the doorframe until he sat on the floor, leaning his back against the wooden frame. "And I can feel how it tries to calm my green strand that is – like me, isn't it? Am I like this? So restless and nervous and jumpy?"
"You are indeed." Snape answered and he smiled, because Snape was right. Harry was a bundle of nerves and he seemed to jump from one thing into the other, always getting into trouble and unable to keep himself still for longer than a few minutes.
"And how can I become like you?" Harry asked. "So calm and so … so something?"
"Something am I?" Snape huffed at Harry and he nearly laughed at that. In the past Snape would have given Harry detention and he would have taken a hundred of points for that. "You will learn it." Snape then said. "You will need to face your fears, and your restlessness, and by learning that you don't need to be so restless and impatient, by learning that will happen what will happen anyway, you'll learn to become calmer – and something."
"It's like with a boggart, isn't it?" Harry then asked and even though he was now sitting on the floor and didn't see the two anymore he knew that Harry had sat up and was now looking at Snape. "You have to learn to face your fears, by ridiculing them, and then the boggart doesn't scare you anymore. And with your core it is the same, if you face your restlessness, then you will get calmer, correct?"
"Correct indeed." Snape answered, even though he didn't really know how one could face his restlessness. "what was your boggart like, Harry?"
"My boggart?" Harry asked, and he rolled his eyes. How could Harry forget it? His had, after all, turned into a spider and he would never ever forget it.
"Your third year, Harry." Snape answered. "The very boggart that had turned into my person wearing his grandmother's clothes – hat and purse included."
"Oh." Harry made and he shook his head.
"Oh, indeed." He heard Snape huffing. "Now, what was your boggart like?"
"I … I don't really know." Harry answered, and he frowned, turning his head so that he could see past Snape's desk and so that he could see his friend and Snape. "I … I've tried to face it, but … well, Professor Lupin had moved in front of the boggart before it could turn into anything. He'd said that he'd feared the boggart would turn into uncle Voldie and he didn't want the class to see that."
"I see." Snape seriously said, placing his fingers beneath Harry's chin and lifting his head. "And would the boggart have turned into the Dark Lord?"
"I don't think so." Harry softly answered, trying to avert his eyes but Snape prevented that.
"What is your worst fear, son?" The man then asked and he nearly held his breath, because he knew that Harry's answer would be either his uncle, or Snape.
"I'm not sure." Harry said, surely trying to avoid getting into trouble with Snape if telling him the truth.
"Harry …" Snape softly demanded. There was a pause – but then …
"Do you still want me to be your son?" Harry asked and he frowned, because that was not what he had thought would be Harry's worst fear.
"Oh, child." Snape said and he could see the man running his fingers over Harry's face, brushing away some strands of black hair and – a tear. "Your fears, my son, are not monsters under the bed or big hairy animals … your worst fear is loosing the people you care for. Your fear is that you might not be good enough and so you have learned to try and go past your limits, to brace yourself against rejection and to have the possibly littlest faith in yourself. I do understand that fear, son, but we are out of the wardrobe now, and here is no cupboard in your room anymore."
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"There is no need to sit in the doorway at the floor, Ronald." He softly called the moment Harry had fallen asleep for sure.
He had noticed the boy earlier already, but he hadn't been ready to disturb the lesson Harry had been about to learn. Not simply the lesson about how he could feel his own magic.
He knew very well that a lot of muggle raised children didn't feel their own magic the way the children which had grown up in a wizarding family did feel heir own magic, because not only were the children in a wizarding family grew up with magic – with magic that was floating around them, and with the magic done, visibly, as well as with the magic they could feel within themselves, but also did they know about magic because it was s regular and an absolutely normal topic to speak about. Their parents, their friends, and their siblings if they had some spoke about magic and explained things to them, not to mention that they did magic too, accidental magic each wizarding child did once in a while.
And though a child that grew up in a muggle family might know that it was special, that there was something different, this child wouldn't know what exactly it was that made him different, and that child most likely was punished for it – or at least frowned upon. Most of such children had learned that what they could do, or the way they were, was bad.
They had learned to avoid their abilities except for the few and short boosts of accidental magic, and a lot of them even tried to forget that there was "something wrong" with them. Considering Harry's past even, he actually wondered how the child could have not developed a blockade concerning magic. But Harry hadn't. A lot of muggle raised children who got blamed and punished for their "abnormality" and for being "from the devil" had started to develop a blockade and had real troubles doing magic the moment they arrived at Hogwarts – they had become squibs over their earliest years.
And when they came to Hogwarts, then they soon needed to send the children off and to other schools, to schools that dealt with squibs – either trying to teach them how they could overcome their blockade, or to simply teach them muggle things. Some however were still able to do a bit of magic but had trouble with it and so he had soon started to show these children their own magic, their core and the magical strands which wound around it as it was not only easily done, but as it also helped them to feel, to accept, and then to use their magic.
And seeing that Harry wasn't allowed to use his magic at the moment, due to his weakness after he'd been so close to death, and since he was still the very ill and weak, he had started to teach Harry in this, to feel his magic at first, and now to see his magic, and soon he would start to show him how to hear his magic even. It would help the boy in keeping up with the others, because after he had understood his magic, he would be able to use it without a spell, without a wand even, and without anything else.
"Sorry, sir." The boy said, getting off the floor and approaching him on the sofa where he still sat with Harry laying halfway on his lap and halfway in his arms, sleeping.
"There is no need to apologize, Ronald." He said. "Is there a reason as to why you have sat there for over half an hour while I have been teaching Harry how to see his magic?"
"Dunno." The boy said, shrugging his shoulders and looking at the floor.
"Sit, child." He said, ignoring the startled gaze the boy cast at him and he pointed at the armchair that stood at the other side of the small table in the background of his office. "Now, what was the reason you have come earlier?"
"I … I've just been thinking." The boy said, again shrugging his shoulders and for a short moment there was a sarcastic comment on his tongue, as to since when the boy had developed the ability to think. Not because it was Ronald Weasley, surely not, but because he was a sarcastic man in general. It was the thing he would say to just anyone upon the mentioning of using brain, thinking, or any similar expression.
"And what has been the subject of your thoughts?" He asked, knowing that the teen needed him to guide him to his answer.
"Well … I've been thinking about the lesson, sir, you know, this afternoon, the charms lesson." The boy said and he nodded his head.
"I am very glad that you are thinking about what you have learned instead of forgetting the subjects the moment the lesson has ended." He seriously said. "You wouldn't have done so a few weeks ago." He then dared.
"I think not." The boy admitted.
"So, what has changed?" He asked, knowing that sarcasm wasn't the right thing right now.
"I'm not so sure." Ronald said, slumping his shoulders and averting his eyes.
"Sit up straight and keep looking at people, boy." He said, running his hand through Harry's hair when the boy stiffened in his sleep at the word 'boy' and he knew why. However, he would not allow Ronald to adopt a slumped posture or to form a habit of averting people's eyes. "There is nothing you need to be ashamed for, and I expect you to always meet people while standing tall, sitting straight and looking at them openly. And now tell me of these unsure changes of yours."
"It's not me who has changed, sir." The boy said, looking at him and he nodded, leaning back on the sofa and pulling Harry with him, shifting the boy into a more comfortable position without waking him.
"What has changed then?" He then asked. "Or rather – who has changed then?"
"Well … it's you, who has changed." Ronald then said, and after his last statement he had feared that the boy would say that.
"I do doubt that, Ronald." He then said. "I might have – shifted a bit, but I am too old to really change. I am the same Severus Snape I have been in he past. May I inquire as to how you come by that realization however, Ronald?" He then asked, knowing that he couldn't discourage that particular boy or he wouldn't get an answer to his question.
"Well, you're not so mean anymore." Ronald said and he growled – because he was mean, and he would show the boy how mean he could become. "You don't take points anymore and you don't give detention either. You don't say mean things anymore either, and you … sir, you even have started to love Harry."
"I do not love that foolish child!" He growled. "I might tolerate him, but that's all that is to that. Concerning my person not taking points – did you realize that I am not teaching regular classes anymore? The only points I could take were your points, and surely I won't take points from my own house – I never have."
"And why wouldn't you put us in detention anymore?" Ronald had the audacity to ask.
"Because you are weak enough as it is, and I won't have your condition worsened." He simply answered. "You just wait until the second term of the year, and then you won't have time to ask silly questions with all the detentions you will have."
"Alright, sir." Ronald said, getting off the armchair and then turned towards he entrance. For a moment he considered to tell him that he should sit back down – just so to have a serious word with the boy, but then … "Anyway, I don't hate you anymore, sir. Actually, I think, I like you." And with these words the boy turned to leave his office.
"Ronald." He called the brat back who stopped, but barely turned back, only a bit, enough so that he couldn't consider him disobedient. "Maybe it is we all who have changed during the past few weeks, because there is no way that we have not changed upon what has happened. Consider this as an admittance that – I might be … less mean."
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To be continued
Next time in A few days more
a few loose ends will be picked up - and Harry will meet a really sad thing ...
Added author's note
please take also a look at the profile of " " and the story "... and sit a while with me ..."
thank you for reading - and yes, I would appreciate it if you took the time to review this chapter too, thank you …
At the present time it looks like this:
766 - Gryffindor - Head of House: Catlady
801 - Slytherin - Head of House: evil minded
678 - Ravenclaw - Head of House: Arithmancy Master
422 - Hufflepuff - Head of House: still a free post