Disclaimer: Severus Snape, Dumbledore, and all the other characters from Harry Potter belong to J. K. Rowling and to the people and companies behind the movies, as does the rich Harry Potter world. No infringement is intended.

Synopsis and author's note: Severus Snape, newly appointed Potions Master and Head of Slytherin at Hogwarts, must battle a spectre to free a senior student of its curse. This story is meant to occur shortly after Snape returned to Hogwarts as a Professor, taking over both potions and being Head of Slytherin from Slughorn. Fennen is still a student, 5 years junior to Snape. She managed to become Snape's friend in her second year, and his final year, as Slytherin students. Snape's return as professor makes their relationship a professional one, though Snape is all too aware that she is no longer the 'kid sister' he took pity on. She is in her final year at Hogwarts. The story is rated "M" for adult situations and some violence.

Acknowledgments: Thanks to J. K. Rowling for the wonderful characters and world she created in the Harry Potter series. Thanks also to Alan Rickman for making Snape so appealing, despite his flaws – who could resist that voice?

Part I: To the Victor…

By Ya Nefer Ma'at

"Miss Al Amar."

Fennen gasped, spinning around, her thick blue-black hair flowing like a cape behind her. When she saw Professor Snape, his black-clad form blending into the deep shadows, her wild look was replaced by a brief glimpse of breathless excitement, with embarrassment close on its heels. "P-professor." she managed, deeply mortified that she had been discovered, mesmerized by the song stealing so seductively through the open window, by the one who invariably occupied her thoughts.

Snape moved forward unhurriedly, his dark eyes steadfast on Fennen's, their newly acquired colour burning like live embers despite the shadows moonlight cast over her face. It was well past midnight, a time when all students- and indeed, all self-respecting professors- should have been tucked safely within their beds, dreaming happily. Instead, Filch had alerted him that 'that damn chit of a girl was at it again', necessitating that he leave the pleasant combination of solitude, fire and book, to chase down the errant Slytherin. He put his hand against the frame of the open window out of which she had been leaning, the winter wind sending icy tendrils up his arm. Snape chose to ignore the cold, given that Fennen, a daughter of desert fire, was dressed only in her silk nightgown, and yet seemed unaware of it. She looked up at him without comment, embarrassment and misery flashing in waves over her elegant Bedouin visage. Snape drew a quick breath, forcing his emotions behind his habitual purring contempt. "Miss Al Amar, I believe we've been through this transgression already." She wilted at his words, desperation distinct in the white line of her lips. Snape sighed, continuing, "I grow tired of repeating myself."

"Y-yes, Sir."

She hung her head, seeking to hide the tears that filled her eyes. Snape compressed his lips. "Let me remind you of the rules one last time." He forced her head up with one long finger under her chin, more roughly than he had intended. Her burning red eyes were home to evil, unnerving to stare into, but stare forcefully into them he did. 'Who is hiding within you, girl?' he wondered, his scrutiny misunderstood by Fennen. "No student, without exception, may roam the castle at will, particularly after bed time. I think that Slytherin has lost enough points due to your inability to respect such an easy rule, Miss Al Amar."

"B-but the song-"

"The song does not concern you." Snape bit out, making Fennen cower under the acid assault of his words. He leaned closer, too close for decorum, in his emotion. He held her chin between his finger and thumb, his hand pale against the smooth café au lait colour of her skin, shaking her head in emphasis. "If you hear singing, you will bury your head into your pillow and stay there, or you will escape to the common room, if you must." Snape paused, abruptly realizing that Fennen was no longer attempting to escape the singer, she was now seeking him. Clearly, her resistance to the dark enchantment was being worn down as rapidly as his own. Snape continued with another deep breath, his voice even more biting as he tenuously kept hold of his control. "You will not creep like a thief to stare out open windows. And you most certainly will not leave the buildings to search for the singer. Do I make myself clear, Miss Al Amar?"

"Yes Sir!"

Snape straightened up slowly, holding her eyes. "Make certain that the points you force me to deduct from my own house are the last, Miss Al Amar." he frowned, reaching past her to pull the window shut. He stood aside, waving for her to precede him back through the labyrinth of the castle to the Slytherin common room, and thence, to her bedroom, silently praying that he had frightened her enough to help her resist the demands of the song that she and no one else heard.

Black magic hung about her like a mist as she hurried in front of him, making Snape's skin crawl even as it shadowed her for him, pimping her shamelessly. In the months since the start of his second year as Professor and her final year at Hogwarts, Snape had been diligently trying to discover what black enchantment had been cast on the senior student, changing her beautiful liquid black eyes to their unnerving, haunted fire, painting her like a sacrifice. He had been immediately aware of the seduction offered by the black power entwining the young woman, more so than his colleagues or the male students. It seemed that Professor Jareth, the Defence Against the Dark Arts Master on sabbatical at Hogwarts, was the only other to fully appreciate the power of the spell shaping Fennen, whispering stealthily to Snape of her lush ripeness, urging him to consume her.

The power of the spell had steadily grown since Fennen's return, and with that, the raw hunger within the call had become blatant in its advertising. 'I will not succumb!' Snape snarled silently at the spell, glaring at Fennen's back. The dark magic thoughtfully filled him with the sensations of reaching out and seizing her splendid thick hair, pulling her back against him. Snape clenched his teeth, ignoring the graphic play unfolding within his senses. 'I don't know what service my violating her would provide you, who-ever you are, but I will not be ruled by you!' Even as he swore this, his face icy, Snape very much feared that he did know exactly what purposes would be fulfilled by such a base act. Only when he had seen her sternly to the entrance of her dormitory did the temptation ebb, evaporating with each step she took into the darkness.

As he thoughtfully returned to his own chambers, Snape considered the problem, realizing that unless the girl was guarded at all times, the spell would inevitably provoke attack, and likely before too long, if it continued to grow in strength as quickly as it had since her return from summer break in the heat of the desert. "Time to see Dumbledore." Snape reluctantly resolved, settling back beside the fire. He was angry that he couldn't resolve the enchantment without the help of the Head Master. "If only I wasn't enticed by the spell" he growled, lips thinned. His heart tightened with hunger at the thought of Fennen. She stood in his mind's eye. So different from Lily, and yet, so similar. Snape shuddered with pain at the thought of Lily, ageless pain that still felt so fresh and so desperate. Somehow, thinking of Lily and Fennen together only increased his desire for the young Slytherin. Snape snapped his book open, hoping to silence his raging emotions, only to give up shortly and make his way to bed for the restless remainder of the night.