Story: I Want You So Bad I Can't Breathe
Author: Veritas Odium Parit
Rating: M+ for Mature Themes, Sexual Content, Harry is under age (fifth year). This is a slash story SS/HP.
Summary: Non-magical, AU. Harry Potter, son of Lily and James Potter, has always been a rather silent boy without many friends. His greatest passion is reading, poetry and fiction. Unfortunately, this was one of the things his parents didn't understand. Books. He starts an affair with his stern and mysterious chemistry Professor, Severus Snape, who is a writer himself.
A/N: I've never written a Non-Magical fanfic before, it's completely different from my other stories. I hope it'll turn out they way I intend it to. Oh, and I'm not a native speaker, so there might be a few grammar errors.
Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter, and it's probably for the best I never will.
-In your fitted raincoat and tangled winter hair,
cheeks a little rosy in the February air -OK Go
Harry Potter was a silent kid. He had always been a little shy, during primary school he used to sit by himself, letting his imagination cary him wherever he wanted to be. He loved reading, poetry and fiction. Often, he stayed awake until late hours, his blankets arranged around him in a tent-like fashion, a flashlight in one hand, a book in the other. His parents found him the next morning, fast asleep, his face resting on a crumpled book, his body covered by tangled and messy sheets, the flashlight still burning in his hand. After years of unsuccessfully trying to get their son to sleep without his favorite hobby, they stopped scolding him for his 'unhealthy habits' as his mother called it, or, 'strange obsession' as his father called it.
His parents, Lily and James Potter, were considered to be the example of a very happy couple. The neighbours called them charismatic, friendly, madly in love and very generous. Their son, Harry, was bright but silent. They often hosted popular parties, which he didn't seem to be very fond of.
Harry loved his parents more than anything, he only wished they would understand him and his passion, for Lily and James just weren't interested in books. The only tomes present in the whole house were Harry's own books, which were stored in a massive bookcase that covered almost his entire bedroom wall, a few magazine's owned by Lily and a shabby cookbook which was an old family heirloom inherited from James' side of the family.
Harry's mother, Lily, a beautiful woman with vibrant red hair, loved food, but was a terrible cook. She loved James and above all her son, Harry. She only wished he'd be more social, she often worried about him, he was secluding himself far too much for her liking.
His father James, a tall and handsome figure with a stunning smile, a prankster extraordinare in his youth, had been very popular during his own school years and often prompted Harry to invite his friends over. His son always refused, telling him he would be busy for the afternoon. Which meant, locking himself up in his room and reading. James could tell his son was happy, and that was enough for him, but he couldn't help himself but wonder where he had failed in the raising of his son.
Harry knew his parents worried about him, but he used to shut their concern out. Since his youth, he preferred his own created worlds and feelings, he loved to delve into stories, refusing to emerge from their emotions, adventures, choosing the written world above his own.
Not because he despised the world around him, on the contrary, it was due to his comfortable environment he was able to live into his stories without disturbance, he only thought it less interesting.
These habits stuck to him, he was currently starting his fifth year of Belfort Public High School, and not one day had passed since first grade without Harry carrying a book and reading it during whatever free time he had, sometimes even during classes. He was small for his age, people often called him tiny or cute, which he hated, for the heroes in his stories were often tall, broad or handsome. He was fifteen years old, with a messy mop of raven hair and big emerald eyes. The other children thought Harry a bit strange. The boy always drifted away during class, his fantasies enveloping him completely. Once, he'd attempted a view of them to explain why exactly books were so much better than real life, but they'd never understood him.
"But, books are just words.." Ron Weasley, a redhead and classmate of him sputtered during their introduction in first year.
"Exactly, letters, nothing seeable" Dean Thomas, a boy living not far from Harry added.
"That's the point!" Harry argued enthusiastic: "They are not 'just' words. Books consist of words, indeed, but they are forming sentences, a story. Everything has it's purpose, pulling the reader into the story, allowing them to 'see' everything around them as if it is the real world."
Seamus Finnegan had only shaken his head after the boys explanation, and given up on the kid.
Fortunately, Harry had found companionship in an older boy, Cedric Diggory. The boy had been in third grade, two years above him, and Harry's total opposite: tall, handsome and popular, but also an
enthusiastic reader. They'd visited the library quite often, until Cedric had graduated last year, leaving Harry on his own with his hobby. Fortunately, the green-eyed boy had also befriended a shy girl called Susan Bones, they were lab partners during chemistry and physics, and a boy called Theodore Nott, who was very thin and skittish, and often absent during classes.
His teachers referred to him as bright, polite but very distant. During the few parent-teacher talks that Belfort had yearly inititated, they'd often asked James and Lily if Harry had made any friends in the neighbourhood, and as the response continued to be a negative, they'd tried, with James and Lily's approval, to set him up with some other year mates, but the boy never really initiated a
further friendship beyond the handshake and brief smile.
Harry himself didn't care what his teachers thought about him, or his classmates on that account. He enjoyed talking to Susan and Theodore, but most of all enjoyed his peace. His favorite subjects were English and Literature. The English professor, a very stern woman called Minerva McGonagall, had had a week spot for her attentive student, she didn't thought of Harry's independence as a negative, she had even encouraged his love for reading. Unfortunately, she had retired the same year as Cedric Diggory had left Belfort, and been replaced by a narcissistic young
man called Gilderoy Lockhart. Harry disliked sports, he wasn't as fast as all his muscled, broad and
tall classmates and he didn't like his professor, who was a very pushy man called Dominick Umbridge.
Another mature he really hated was chemistry. The last year's teacher had been a complete useless fool who'd been constantly seeing spies hiding in the broom-closet. He'd accused every one of them falsely for cheating on various tests, and it had turned out the man had suffered from a mild form of paranoia.
Harry groaned and buried his head in his pillows, effectively shutting out his mother's voice. He'd just been having the most beautiful dream about sunny plains with all kind of seldom creatures inhabiting the lands...
"Harry, sweetie, wake up. Today's your first day," Lily pulled the covers from his bed, exposing him to the chilly morning air that flooded trough his just opened bedroom windows.
He tried to wriggle himself under the remaining pillows, but his mother would have none of it, she snatched the soft pillows away, threatening to carry her son into the bathroom and to force him to
shower cold if he wouldn't emerge.
Harry complied, for he knew his mother never ushered empty threads. He padded grumpy towards the bathroom, hating the fact he was actually small enough for his mum to carry him around in his fifth year.
After a quick shower, he headed downstairs, where his father was just finishing his cereal. James smiled and ruffled his sons hair in a friendly manner.
"Good morning son, are you exited about your first day?"
"Dad, I'm not a little kid anymore. It's not like new term is going to be different from last year. Besides, today is double-chemistry and double-sports, I'm doomed."
"I used to fail my chemistry classes too... we had the most ridiculous professor, a rather voluminous man called Slughorn. I believe he used to fancy your mum a little, of which she shamelessly took advantage, by the way."
"James!" Lily reprimanded her husband as she walked into the kitchen, carrying a bottle fresh milk.
James almost chocked on his last spoonful, he'd not expected Lily to be back that soon, and decided wisely to take his leave.
"Bye Harry, have fun. If you want, you can bring your friends over."
"Hmm hmm" Harry answered, searching the fridge for some bacon.
"You haven't contacted them all summer..." James said a little exasperated. Lily shot him a warning glance, but Harry was so engulfed in making his breakfast that he'd missed the exchange. He just
grumbled something in reply, not really paying attention to what his father was saying, but guessing it was something about 'inviting' and 'friends'.
James bade his wife goodbye and left for work. Half an hour later, Harry exited the house, strolling towards the bus stop, arriving just in time to shield himself from the sudden rainfall by cowering under the wooden stall. He retied his tie and fastened one of his shoelaces. His book bag was resting on his hip, a big tome he'd just started on yesterday clamped under his left arm. The bus was late and full, but Harry managed to find himself two empty seats in the back. Susan joined him the next stop and they talked about their summer vacations.
"We travelled to Switserland, mum really loved it, unfortunately, dad is afraid of hight. Of course, he was to proud to admit it, this resulted in a small drama as mum dragged us with her on a mountain trip with a tour guide. After only two kilometres, dad clung himself to a stray rock, refusing to move another foot."
Susan laughed at the memory and Harry giggled along with his friend. He told Susan in turn about the books he'd newly discovered in the public library. Far too soon for his liking, the bus driver announced they'd reached their destination.
Harry hid his tome under his coat, he hated it if his books got wet, and ran after Susan towards the entrance. In no time, his hair and coat were soaked, and he cursed the unpredictable English weather, fearing his tome might not have survived the small run entirely water-free.
Severus Snape eyed the massive building with more than a little apprehension. A sober engraving just above the main entrance informed visitors that the mass of elegantly piled, grey granite square blocks was in fact: 'Belfort Public School'.
He sighed, at least the rain had finally came to a halt. He abandoned his safe spot, a stone bench under a big oak tree, and choose his way carefully around the puddles, trying to avoid his shoes getting wet. He neared the entrance with swift strides, not even trying to look enthusiastic.
Severus had never expected he would end up in teaching. Frankly, if he'd ever known it would come to this, he would have dropped out of chemistry class immediately. He would have chosen a peaceful future above his favourite subject, no doubt. Unfortunately, back then, he hadn't known, and therefore, gotten a degree in chemistry, focussing all his attention solely on writing once he'd finished school. His passion was reading and, above all, writing. He loved poetry, but wasn't a writer in that particular genre.
A few years back, his books had been quite popular in certain library and book store- sections. Unfortunately, due to a brief writers block and the soon following empty wallet, he was forced to search for a job. The only job available had been at Belfort's, the local high school, and he'd accepted the offer, though grudgingly, and today would be his first day as 'Professor Snape.'
He snarled and shoved one hand deeper into his pocket, straightening his collar with his other hand.
He swore himself to leave this school as soon as possible, he would search for a normal job which didn't involved screaming children and stubborn parents, or even better, continue where he'd left of and finally produce a best-seller.
In his pocket, his hand closed around the small tome he carried along. He was used to having books surrounding him, he wouldn't abandon his hobby simply because of a small financial 'problem.' He liked reading a few verses during short subway-or bus rides. Often, people didn't think it strange, for, according to some of his former partners, Severus had the the distinctive aura of a writer surrounding him. Severus himself never believed one could look or act 'as a writer' for every writer was different, but it satisfied him to know he left an intelligent impression.
He was currently thirty seven, single and very content. Occasionally, he had some bed-partners or lovers, some of them stayed for a longer period of time, others left after one night. He didn't really mind, as long as the sex was enthralling and the conversations acceptable, he wouldn't complain.
He knew he wasn't remarkably handsome, he was tall, with dark eyes and rather long, black hair that reached just above his shoulders. Still, his mysterious look seemed to attract the attention from males all around him. He didn't visit clubs, mostly picked his lovers up at bars or even a café somewhere during lunch. He was often referred to as closed, but charismatic once one knew him better. Severus refused to let much people 'know him better', he didn't need more surrounding him
than necessary. He was in the possession of a keen wit, loved playful banter, though he hadn't practice that art in a long time, he had to admit.
Writing all alone in his room hadn't given him much time for friendships. Even during meals he scribbled small notes or thoughts in a thick notebook and only in his bedroom he forbade himself to write. Every thought would be banished from his head once he'd entered the room and slipped under the silky covers, no matter if alone or with company.
A group of chatting students passed him in the hall, eyeing him curiously, and Severus resigned himself to his fate: he would be Professor Snape, teaching a group of noisy, ungrateful brats about the model of Rutherford.
Harry sighed, he believed the rain to be a clear indication towards his soon-to-be miserable afternoon. His morning classes had passed quietly, he'd talked a bit with Theodore, who had downright evaded Harry's polite question about his summer break, and Harry hadn't prodded, for he thought it Theodore's own business if he wanted to share his memories with Harry or not. Instead, they'd ridiculed Lockhart, who had been acting out one of his summer vacation anecdotes with all the girls in front of him fawning over him, and speculated about their new chemistry teacher.
"He will be just as mad as the last one, I'm sure" Theodore had mumbled, nervously slumping in his seat to avoid being given a role in Lockhart's abysmal play. Harry, who was never elected for these kind of tasks, giggled.
"I bet he is old, grey and chaotic. He won't remember our names, probably even forgetting we are there. He'll constantly be scribbling formula's which only he comprehends on the whiteboard and startle out of his musings once the bell rings."
For the remaining hour, Harry had read his book, which had indeed a few damp pages, and Theodore had decided on napping, absent-mindedly doodling on his desk until his eyes fell shut.
After lunch, Harry's mood brightened at the prospect of having a free period. He settled in the library at first, trying to read, but the first years made a lot of ruckus during their tour through Belfort (an idea from the new Headmaster to prevent the firsties from getting lost) and he'd given up on enjoying a quiet hour.
Remus Lupin, a gentle amber eyed man who was the librarian and always allowed Harry to take books from the school library home, had invited him over for tea as soon as he'd noticed Harry's annoyance.
"I am sorry Harry" (They had agreed on calling each-other by their first names)
Remus ran a hand trough his shaggy sandpaper hair and smiled apologetically.
"They'll be gone in a few minutes."
Harry smiled an sipped from his cinamon-blend.
"I'll come back tomorrow" He said, eying his book with concern. A few pages had curled up due to the water, even after he'd dried them and separated them with tissues.
"You should try and heavy them with something, that'll straighten them up again" Remus commented, noticing Harry's concern. "Sugar?"
Harry shook his head and smiled, the man always added three spoonfuls, creating a very sweet brew. Whilst Harry liked sugar and milk, he preferred to actually still taste the tea itself. Remus filled his own cup with sugar, added a little bit of tea and stirred. They finished their drinks in a comfortable silence. Harry declined Remus' offer to spend the rest of his period in his office politely, he really needed some alone-time, and left with a promise to return the other day.
He decided to leave his reading be for the moment and he headed towards the school labs, which were located in the basement. Chemistry wouldn't start for the next thirty minutes, but that was fine for him, he could just sit in one of the abandoned corridors, his back against the central heater.
On his way downstairs he tried to straighten the pages by pressing them together tightly, following Remus' advice. He was so engulfed in his work that he walked straight into a tall, dark figure, not
noticing the man until his head collided with a firm chest. He heard a muffled 'umph' and staggered backwards, startled, dropping his book, gripping the banister to prevent loosing his balance. The
man he'd walked into cursed softly.
"Oh, sorry sir" He blushed, his eyes meeting two dark onyx orbs. He quickly bent down to retrieve his book, only to find that an elegant hand had already picked it up from the floor.
He had been on his way upstairs, trying to figure out where the staff room was located, when a small boy holding a big tome bumped into him in mid-stride. Severus cursed softly, annoyed that he would have to deal with inattentive students this early. The boy looked up shyly, blushing, and Severus lost all his previous anger as he saw the child's bright green eyes.
"Uh, Sorry sir" The child stuttered.
Severus ducked and picked the book the boy had been carrying from the floor, swiping some imaginary dust from the cover. He scanning the title briefly and handing it back to the flustered teen. He noticed, once he'd had the time to look at the boy more properly, that he wasn't that young, in fact. Just incredibly cute for his age.
"Thank you, sir" The boy checked the book for any damage, softly stroking the rims and edges.
"Have you hurt yourself?" Severus asked, eyeing the dishevelled kid with a small smile.
"No sir. Are you alright?" The boy seemed to be convinced that his tome was unharmed, he tucked it under his arm again and adjusted his backpack a little.
"I am. But tell me, is your book that exiting that you have to read it whilst walking down a narrow sets of stairs?"
The boy flushed again, it was really too cute, and smiled shyly.
"The book is fantastic. I love the plot, not even to mention the style. It carries you away, into this world filled with doubt and mistrust, where no one seems to know what's real and what's just an
invention of the mind, even the main character can't-"
The boy, realizing he was rambling, broke off in mid sentence and smiled a little apologetically, before continuing, looking a little disappointed:
"Anyways, I wasn't reading, I tried to straighten the pages, a few got damp due to the miserable weather."
The messy-haired boy scrunched his nose, frowning as if the rain could actually see his glare. Severus chuckled inwardly. As regrettably as it was, though, he had to leave for the staff room, otherwise he wouldn't make it to his first class of the year in time. He had never heard of 'The Unfortunate Fate of Klaus Alecteric' as the book was titled, but he liked it that this teen was obviously a very die-hard reader.
"I, uh, better get going. It was nice meeting you sir." The boy slipped past him, and only after he'd rounded the corner it hit Severus that nor he, nor the boy, had introduced themselves.
A/N: Please review and tell me what you guys think, I am not sure if this plot is going to work... at all.
A/N2: 'The Unfortunate Fate Of Klaus Alecteric' is a randomly invented title, I thought it sounded mysterious xD