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The Snape Chronicles (or Harry Potter Through My Eyes)—Chapter 1

"I take it you haven't forgotten your promise, Severus."

Snape pinched his lips tightly, willing himself not to choke the old Headmaster until his eyes bulged right through those delicate spectacles. "Some of us aren't yet senile, Albus. I remember as if it were yesterday—oh, wait. It was. Incessant carping will not make me perform better, in case you were wondering." He brushed a stray kneazle whisker off the front of his robe and turned to face the other wizard. "I shall protect the bra…Mr. Potter as if he were my own." Own what was left to the imagination.

"Very well. Shall we?" Dumbledore opened the door leading to the upper portion of the Great Hall, where the staff table set. Already the other teachers were settled in, waiting for Minerva to bring in the first years.

Snape took his seat beside Professor Quirrell, rolling his eyes at the ludicrous turban perched on the man's head. That's what he chose to wear for his first impression? And Albus wondered why the DADA position needed refilling each year? Heaven forbid he give the slot to a competent practitioner!

The children at the tables had grown quiet; Professor McGonagall was leading in the new students. Severus leaned forward slightly in anticipation. There was Draco, no mistaking that towhead, so like a miniature version of Lucius. No, that wasn't true. He only looked like Lucius, he hadn't any of his father's caustic-yet-droll wit. He tried, but…well, not important. He was Severus' godson, that was enough. Unless he were somehow placed in another House, in which case Lucius would murder him. Snape smirked to himself, imagining Lucius drawling, "Melodrama, Severus? It doesn't become you."

Snape scanned the faces of the other children huddled round as the Sorting Hat droned on with its song. Which one was Potter? The pudgy, dark haired one? The sandy haired boy with freckles? The instant he saw James'—er, Harry's face, he knew. Didn't it just figure the brat had to look exactly like his archenemy? Except for the eyes, which Albus frequently reminded him came from Lily. Severus curled his lip; knowing his luck, Harry would act like the spoiled, pampered, bullying shit that sired him.

Harry was under the Hat now. It seemed to be taking an inordinately long time. Severus was torn; if Potter were sorted into Slytherin, protecting him would be much simpler. He'd have the occasion to mentor him, teach him helpful spells. But it would also let the children of Death Eaters see him treating Potter differently, and who's to say they wouldn't gossip to their fathers? Not a good position to be in.

Please not Slytherin, please not Slytherin, he muttered in his mind.

When the Hat shouted, "Better be Gryffindor!", Severus nearly shit a brick. Was the universe out to get him? In what plane of existence did 'not Slytherin' translate to 'Gryffindork, please'? Of all the Houses, why did he have to be placed there? Slytherin and Gryffindor mixed like—well, Slytherin and Gryffindor. They didn't! Now he'd have a hell of a time getting Potter alone to train him, which left stalking him in order to protect him. Joy.

He glanced over at Harry's table to see the boy looking back and rubbing his forehead. One of the Weasley troop was talking to him, undoubtedly poisoning his mind against the Potions instructor. Greasy git. Bat of the dungeons. How he'd love to unleash some pent up rage on the redheaded twats. Oh, how he hated teaching.

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Well, so much for the first week of class. I foolishly held out a glimmer of hope that this bunch might not be as inept as previous years. Yet again they prove me wrong. The Ravenclaws, as always, are suck-ups intent on passing with high marks, not learning the true delight of Potions. The Puffs…let's not even go there. Of the Slytherins, only Draco holds any promise, and Lucius would slit my throat before he'd allow his son's life to veer in the direction of actual work. And the Gryffindorks! God is punishing me.

Granger is a fawning, attention-seeking know-it-all, Weasley is a complete dolt (a bit surprising, as his brothers were all passably intelligent, despite the twins' penchant for cruel tricks), and Longbottom is a screw-up moron who will probably blow up the laboratory. I caught Potter doodling while I gave my introductory speech, which went very well if I do say so, and he naturally hadn't bothered to read the material ahead of time. I'm not yet sure if he's stupid or just lazy; either one won't get him far in my book, and if the dark lord returns it may get him butchered like a hog. There is only so much I can do despite Dumbledore's guilt trips and shameless manipulation.

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"Mr. Malfoy, Mr. Crabbe, might I inquire as to why two from my House are out of bed after hours—wandering the corridor, no less?"

The deep drawl stopped the pair of boys in their tracks, eyes bulging. They turned as one, and to Draco's horror Crabbe mumbled, "We was goin' to the Trophy Room for the Wizard's Duel with Potter."

Severus drew his robes around himself, arms crossed, face set in a frightful scowl. "Is that so? Draco, is this your idea?"

As if he needed to ask. Crabbe wouldn't entertain an original thought if it pried open his skull and crawled inside his brain with a bottle of wine and an engraved invitation. And Potter was an idiot who likely didn't even know what a Wizard's Duel was.

"Well, I—I," Draco sputtered. "He's such a jerk! Prancing around the school with that stupid scar, everyone treating him like a king. The teachers all favour him even more than the rest of the Gryffindorks—"

"So in answer to my question, yes," interrupted Snape.

Draco hung his head; Crabbe merely stood staring dully.

"Go back to the dungeons immediately," instructed their Head of House. "Rather than punish everyone by taking off points, I shall be owling each of your fathers about this."

"But, Professor," Draco pleaded.

"Go!"

The boys took off at a run down the hallway, leaving Snape to seethe. Great. This was just peachy. Already Draco was looking for trouble, which hardly put Severus in a good light, since he'd been asked by Lucius to watch over his son. A Wizard's Duel—which at their skill level posed little danger—would be perceived as a big deal if Dumbledore got wind of anyone out to harm his precious Potter. No doubt Lucius would set his son straight, and there'd be no more such antics, but it made keeping an eye on Potter that much more difficult.

Speaking of which, he'd best check out the Trophy Room to see if Potter was there. It could turn into a good chance to give the brat detention, and maybe teach him a spell or two to defend himself.

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I should have known it wouldn't be that easy. Filch and his neurotic cat were the only ones remotely near the Trophy Room, though he told me students had been detected. He let Potter slip through his fingers. On another note, Draco is still miffed because I tattled on him for his own good and my peace of mind. Lucius made a special visit the following day, ostensibly in his capacity as governor, although I am aware he paid Draco a call in order to give him a talking-to, perhaps even a caning. At this point, I don't even care. I swear to God, sometimes I want to throttle half the population of this school. Oh, and did I mention the new broom Minerva sent Potter so he could join her Quidditch team? The blatant favoritism and hypocrisy galls me to the bone.

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Head held high, aimed at the action in the air, Severus gritted his teeth and pretended to enjoy watching the Quidditch match. To the passing bystander, he appeared to be snarling, but that was neither here nor there. As long as Harry was playing for Gryffindor, Snape was obliged to be here in case he needed defense—and heaven knew the little monster required a team of aurors at his elbow day and night to prevent his untimely demise.

He pulled his cloak about him, sulking. It wouldn't be so boring if he had someone to talk to, like Lucius, his only true friend. The only one he trusted with his life, at any rate. Instead, who did he have? Quirrell, that turban-headed weirdo, who sat behind him mumbling to himself like a lunatic! Even if Minerva were here rather than at the announcer's box, he'd be able to quarrel with her. That always cheered him up.

Marcus Flint blocked Harry, sending him spiraling off course. Severus grinned. Quidditch did have its moments. Oh, there it is—Gryffindor gets a free shot: what a surprise. If they'd knocked half the Slytherin team tumbling to their deaths, it was doubtful any action would be taken. After all, only Slytherins are capable of malice, right? His snarl intensified.

And then he noticed Harry behaving very oddly, lurching and twisting in the air the way no Quidditch player would ever do…which was probably a bad thing. Severus swore under his breath. This meant someone had bewitched the broom, and he hadn't time to figure out who at the moment. Staring unblinkingly at the boy, he began to recite a countercurse intended to hold Harry on the broom.

Harry began rolling wildly, with the crowd pointing and gasping. Another violent jerk unseated the lad and left him dangling from the broomstick with one hand. Severus shut out everything else as he chanted the spell, his mind whirling. Where was Dumbledore? He'd be able to soften the kid's landing if the countercurse failed. Heart pounding, he continued chanting, refusing to be distracted by the Weasley twins circling Potter like vultures.

Then he smelled smoke, saw flames from the corner of his eye. He yelped and jumped, twisting his head and breaking eye contact as he swatted at the flame that suddenly seemed to be gone. He whirled back to see Harry climbing back onto his broom. Something had stopped the curse. His piercing black eyes roamed over the stands searching for the culprit, then he turned round to Quirrell, only he was no longer there. Coincidence? Unlikely.

The next thing Snape heard was a roar from the Gryffindor stands, and saw Harry spitting out the snitch. Didn't that just figure? The brat nearly dies, and comes out of it a hero. Disgusted, Severus stamped out, leaving the throngs of admirers to look after Potter. He had his snakes to lecture…er, talk to about being beaten by Gryffindorks.

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Oh. My. God. Just when I thought I'd get a reprieve from watching over Potter, who tries to eradicate himself at every opportunity, I discovered he's staying at Hogwarts for Christmas holiday. That means, of course, that I am compelled to stay as well. Not that I have anything better to do, but it's the principle of the thing. I cannot express in words how much I hate Dumbledore for roping me into this.

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Snape slammed the door to Dumbledore's office as he barked, "You have got to be kidding me! I'm supposed to look after Potter with McGonagall pulling stunts like sending him into the Forbidden Forest with Hagrid? The Forbidden Forest, where all manner of peril lies! With Hagrid! At night! This is insane! Potter could have been killed—all the children could have been—and you haven't a word of reproach for either adult in this situation?"

"No harm came to them," Albus said softly.

"Sheer luck," spat Severus, pacing in front of the enormous desk. "Draco is sure to tell his father, and what will you do if Lucius decides to pull funding from Hogwarts? His donations keep this school afloat. And I wouldn't blame him a bit. And getting back to your Golden Boy—"

"I will speak with Minerva about the wisdom of her decision," Dumbledore interrupted, his blue eyes not twinkling in the least. "I agree with you, Severus. It was dangerous and foolish, and she will hear about it. As will Hagrid," he added, preemptively cutting off another string of inquiries.

Severus stopped in his tracks, speechless. For once the Headmaster was agreeing with him, and he didn't quite know how to process it. He decided upon a snippy, "Good", and turned to the door. He paused before saying, "I've spoken to Quirrell several times. I do not believe we can trust him."

"Thank you. I'll keep my eye on him as well."

Snape nodded and left, closing the door quietly behind him.

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Un-freaking-believable. Harry Potter somehow managed to defeat the dark lord, who apparently has been traveling about on the back of Quirrell's head! With the help of his loyal cohorts in crime, Potter made his way to the room holding the Sorcerer's Stone, where he came upon Quirrell. From what Albus said, which is precious little, Quirrell couldn't touch Potter's sainted skin, and Albus arrived in time to save the disobedient brat. So technically Dumbledore chased off Voldemort, though he's giving Potter the credit. I suppose in his mind, word will go out to the Death Eaters that Harry Potter is a formidable foe, so the next time the dark lord grows strong enough to make an appearance, they will hesitate before attacking. Good luck on that front. They fear the dark lord far more than they'll ever fear a boy, no matter his reputation. Meanwhile, I'm still stuck babysitting the wretched little urchin. I hate my life.