"Love the Way You Lie"

Severus Snape pressed his head to the window of the train as he watched her beautiful face turn with anger. Lily Evans jerked her shoulder out from under James Potter's arm. The laughter faded from Potter's face as he looked at his girlfriend in bewilderment. Lily said something, her face still twisted in a glare, her hand flipping toward the train.

For a moment, Severus felt his heart give a painful twist. It was just too much to hope that she was finally seeing what a moron Potter was…and it was beyond normal hope that even if she had changed her mind about Potter that she would even talk to him.

A guffawing broke through his thoughts and he turned his head quickly to see the haughty face of Avery and Mulciber. They were laughing over some overly crude joke, crumbs from the food they'd taken from the cafeteria sprinkled down their fronts.

Rolling his eyes, Snape leaned back against the seat. He swore to himself at the beginning of this year—and even the year before—that he was going to let her go, but then he saw her and all of his resolve shattered into his quivering heart. He was a fool. A weak fool. His fascination with the girl was a weakness, like an illness that infested his blood and he couldn't find a cure.

A sharp blast of the whistle echoed across the platform and he sat back in his seat. He ran his fingers through his hair and reached for his small bag. He fished out his potions book and laid it across his lap. He wanted a distraction; he thumbed through the pages, looking for a complicated recipe that could occupy his mind. He had nothing to look forward to at the end of this train ride. He was going back to a mother who seemed to hate him a little more as each year passed. He didn't even know if his father would be there. The man had been gone when Severus left for school in the spring, but that didn't mean that he would stay gone. He never did.

The train hadn't been out of the station more than ten minutes, but Severus was already feeling chocked by the train and his classmates. Their low voices were more like primal grunts than conversation and the topics were so idiotic that he didn't even begin to try and follow. He pulled the book closer to his face and tried to focus. His fool classmates didn't appreciate the magic they were being taught to do or the magic of which they were capable. Several of the current hallway spells were created by students and several were Severus' original work.

The words on the page danced as he tried to tune out the other boys and he knew it was a losing battle. For a moment he considered silencing them or hindering his own hearing with magic, but that would almost be asking for retaliation from the other boys. The prospect amused him, he could easily out hex them, but in a few hours he would need all of his energy to fight his other battles.

Standing up, he tossed his book onto the seat glared at Avery's legs. "Move," he snarled.

Avery's fingers twitched toward the pocket in his robe, but at the look on Severus' face, he bent his knees. "Where you going?"

"Out," Snape replied simply.

He slid the door close and started immediately for the back of the train. The prefects were in the front of the train and he really didn't want to encounter one of them.

He hurried past the compartments fill with students. The Easter Holidays were supposed to be a family oriented time and so many of the students seemed thrilled. Snape wasn't. He would have gladly stayed at school enjoyed the solace of being almost alone, but the wretched letter from his mother said he would need to be home. He couldn't imagine what she would need, but she never asked to see him anymore and it ws his final holiday so he thought he'd oblige.

Shoving his way through more of the doors, past groups of laughing students, he finally made it to the baggage car. The car was blissfully dark and quiet. The steady creaking and clanking of the wheels on the track was almost soothing. He slid the door shut behind him and walked to a stack of boxes. Leaning forward on his hands, he closed his eyes and tried to clear his head.

Why did she take over everything in his mind like this? It had been almost two years and still…

With a whoosh, the door slid open behind him. Severus quickly jerked around and felt his heart lurch again.

There she was. Tear tracks traced down her beautiful cheeks, her amazing green eyes filled, and hurting.

He held his breath expecting her to turn and leave but she surprised him by stepping further into the car and shutting the door behind her. Angrily, she wiped the tears away. "What are you doing here?"

What was he doing here? This had been one of their places. The spot where they could laugh and relax without the overly critical stares of the other students, but for the train ride they weren't a Gryffindor and a Slytherin, or the "awful boy" and one of the flower children, they were just Lily and Sev. When he was on the train this was the place he cared to be. It wasn't marred by idiotic mistakes. Well, it hadn't been.

Even though he was thrilled to see her, even though his heart was already reacting erratically, anger and the bile of hurt were taking over and a nasty comment was building. It would be so easy to give her a moment of the agony he had been dealing with the past two years but he stopped himself. He focused on the tears and tried to think of something different to say.

"There's peace here," he said softly.

Lily's beautiful, swollen eyes narrow and her hand slammed across his cheek before he was even aware of what had happened.

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