Severus' heart pounded against his chest. He could hear the beat in his ears as the duel he was in seemed to pass by in slow motion. Adrenaline was pumping through his veins as he thought curses and fought the death eater before him.

"HHHHAAARRRRRRRRRYYYYY!" He heard the girl scream. He turned and saw Hermione Granger was being held against her will, her wand nowhere to be seen.

"Stupid girl!" Severus growled and ran for her. Harry was being pulled away by Mad Eye, the battle was lost.

"HERMIONE!" Harry called back as he was drug through one of the doors in the room.

Severus cursed the death eater that had her and Hermione was released.

"Go!" Severus yelled at her and blocked a curse.

"Bu-" She started.

"GO!" Severus bellowed and jerked her towards another door. Hermione ran through and Severus followed her. They raced down a hallway and Hermione looked over her shoulder.

"Don't look back!" Severus remarked as they went down a flight of stairs. They were rushing to flee a battle that had started in an old magic library. The building had been abandoned and there was thought of a horocruxe lying in its dusty halls. Either it had been there or they sniffed a little too closely because they had been ambushed when they arrived.

At the bottom of the stairs was a large room, had to have been a banquet hall.

"Keep going!" Severus yelled. Hermione saw an exit and ran for it. A few feet from the door Severus saw a death eater step out from the shadows, wand raised. Severus reached forward and shoved Hermione through the door as a curse was sent at her. It struck Severus in the face and caused a great explosion. Hermione was thrown hard to the ground and covered her head when the blast went off.

She looked back to see Severus on the ground, she couldn't see his face. She looked to the death eater.

"Professor!" She called. Severus groaned and stirred, a pool of blood had formed around his head on the ground. He pushed himself off the ground and lifted his head. Hermione gasped when she saw nothing but a blood dripping mess. Severus felt around for his wand. He grasped it and spit the blood from his lips so he could breathe.

"Behind You!" Hermione yelled upon seeing the death eater drawing closer. Severus pointed his wand behind him and yelled out.

"SECTUMSEMPRA!" He growled. Hermione watched and the man was literally cut to pieces. She got up and ran back. She grabbed his arm and pulled him to his feet.

"C'mon," She said and Severus clumsily let her drag him from the building.

Outside, the rain was pouring and getting into Severus' wounds. He reached his hands to his face but muttered out in pain.

"Don't touch, let Madame Pomfrey-" Hermione told him and tried to keep him moving. Severus held his head and swayed. He dropped to his knees, bringing her down with him.

"Professor!" Hermione called to him.

"Stay awake, you can do it," Hermione told him. Severus couldn't, he was so dizzy and suddenly so weak. All he could feel was the rain hitting him, mixing with the blood that poured from his wounds. The pain was numbing and Severus knew he couldn't take it much longer. He collapsed to the ground and Hermione's voice grew fainter each time she called out to him.

Harry walked down to the great hall. He still couldn't believe Albus insisted they stay they're last year. They had bigger things to deal with than homework or graduation, how could he know if they were going to be alive by time graduation rolled around.

Harry came to the table where he found Ron.

"Where's Hermione?" Harry asked. Ron looked up to him.

"Where do you think she is mate?" Ron asked. Harry hung his head.

"It wasn't her fault," Harry groaned.

"I know mate and we've both said it...she had another nightmare last night," Ron replied.

"At least her nightmares aren't created by you-know-sodding-who," Harry replied as the plate before him filled with food and he ate his dinner.

Hermione was in the infirmary sitting next to a bed that was surrounded by curtains. In the bed was an unconscious Snape with bandages wrapped around his head, covering his eyes. His wounds had healed, it was more for everyone else's benefit. Severus' eyes were horribly scarred during the explosion. Madame Pomfrey said if he ever woke up, he would be blind. Hermione could only imagine what he would be like if he woke up. Vile, mean, pissed off, wounded, and about a thousand times worse than he ever was on a normal day. Hermione knew he wouldn't be pleasant or kind but she still found comfort sitting there. When she couldn't sleep she would come there and either stare at him or read a book aloud.

She guessed it was because no matter how much she had hated him or how cruel he was to her, when it mattered he put his life on the line to protect her. He didn't throw her to the wolves. He was loyal to the Order. She wondered if that was what Albus saw in him and why he was the only one to proclaim that trust.

Hermione was lost in her own thoughts for hours and fell asleep in her chair. The witching hour was ticking by when the occupant of the bed stirred. He groaned out and moved his head. He drew in a deep breath as he fully awakened. His hands reached to his face and found the bandages. He removed them and opened his eyes. He felt around in confusion when the darkness remained. His breathe hastened as he found the night stand and knocked the glass and pitcher off.

Hermione jumped from her sleep, startled. She looked over and found Severus awake and fumbling around. She just looked at him. His eyes were now a milky blue instead of the intense black they had been before.

"Madame Pomfrey!" Severus called out. Hermione cleared her throat and spoke.

"She's asleep, it's past Midnight," Hermione spoke.

"Who are you?" He asked.

"Hermione Granger," She said. Severus gripped the side of the bed and cocked his head towards her.

"What are you doing here? If it's past midnight as a student you should be in bed," He told her.

"I-" Hermione stuttered.

"20 points from Gryfindor, Miss Granger, now LEAVE!" Severus growled at her. Hermione got to her feet and left. She got to the door, took off her shoes, shut the door, and tip toed back to his bed.

Hermione watched as Severus reached his hands up to his face and felt the scars that ran across his eyes. He drew a ragged breathe before putting his hands down. He took a breath and pulled the blankets off of him.

Hermione tensed as she backed out of his way. He held his arms before him and grabbed the night table. He stepped down into the spilt water. He picked his feet back up for a moment before ignoring the cold and getting to his feet. He reached out and found the curtain. He followed them and found the gap in them. He stepped out into the middle of the room.

Hermione gave him a strange look as he turned towards the door. He walked slowly, an arm out, until he found the door. He felt around for the knob and opened the door. He stepped out into the hall and Hermione followed him. He turned in the general direction of the dungeons and paused.

He seemed confused as he sighed and put a hand over his face. Hermione came to stand in front of him. She knew he wanted to get to the dungeons. She didn't imagine his pride would allow him to be seen by students in such a way. Hermione took a deep breath to gather her confidence as she reached for his still outstretched hands.

Her fingers grazed the inside of his palm and hooked under his. He raised his head but said nothing as Hermione pulled him forward. He gripped her hand and walked with her. She didn't say anything as she led him to the dungeons. When they came to stairs Hermione would stop him and drop her hand each time she took a step. He got the hint quickly.

Hermione paused outside the potions classroom. She didn't know where his quarters were.

"At the end of the hall, turn left," He spoke. Hermione smiled and pulled him forward. She followed his directions and Hermione came to a dead end.

"I can get it from here," Severus replied. Hermione let go of his hand and walked past him.

"30 points to Gryfindor Miss Granger," He said when she was about to turn the corner.

"You're welcome Professor," Hermione said and quickly made her way back to Gryfindor tower. She knew how to duck Filch thanks to Harry and Ron's influences.