Once upon a time... Isn't that how all good fairy tales start? Severus tapped his quill on the parchment that lay before him as he stared across the library table. A girl from Ravenclaw shifted awkwardly under his absent gaze. Her movement caused his eyes to momentarily focus on her. Long straight black hair, blue eyes, pale skin, moderate complexion... He knew of a potion he could brew up that would clear up the pink rash on her skin. It did not appear to be an infection, but more of a reaction from a nervous tick.

She sat with her legs over the arm of a plush couch, and he looked down when she pulled her hair in front of her face presumably to hide from him. He was suppose to be writing a creative short story for his divination class. The story would be given to a classmate,and the classmate would examine it for hidden clues to the persons soul. His paper would not have his name on it,and the other student was suppose to figure out who he was from the story alone. The theory was, that if he truly poured his soul into his writing that picking out who he was would be a simple task.

As ridiculous as it seemed, it was far better than looking at a crystal ball. It was slightly more practical anyway. Not much, but slightly. The only problem was... What would he write? The instructions were to closed his eyes and write the story that bloomed in his heart... but he had sat with his eyes closed for an hour with no luck, and now was just trying to make something... anything... up. He found himself staring at the girl again. Wasn't she in his divination class? Perhaps she could help him. Ravenclaws were known for their creativity.

With a sigh Severus' head drooped. Who was he kidding. Why would a Ravenclaw want to help a Slytherin with their homework. He had actually been looking forward to this assignment, as Lily had told him that he should take up writing to aid in his concentration. Writing was supposedly a great way to process the world. But in the two months he had been journalling nightly his best entry thus far was this:

"So... I'm writing right now. Writing in my journal. Just writing and writing. Does writing get easier if you keep doing it? There's this really gross bug on the outside the window. I want to open the window the shoo it away, but its cold outside. At least there's a bug to write about though. Maybe if I'm quiet a bird will eat the bug. There aren't very many birds out today."

It was terribly boring, yes... but it did make him feel better. Maybe soon he would actually write his thoughts. Of course, he refused to do that until he had put proper wards on his journal. He received enough mockery from James' gang as it was, without them reading his deepest secrets. Maybe he would write a story about the dog he had owned since childhood. The dog was simply named Dog, but would be a good main character.

Once upon a time there was a dog-... Well it was more than he had before. Once again Severus blinked to find the Ravenclaw girl scratching her neck in nervous discomfort at his gaze. He looked down again, but managed to catch a glimpse of her pink cheeks. He felt vaguely ashamed of himself for embarrassing her, but chose to ignore the feeling. Focusing on it would only cause him to react similarly,and that would be a disgrace.

With finality Severus heaved a long sigh and let his head fall to his desk. The near deafening thwack sound his head made in the silent room was by far more painful than the impact. He considered groaning and feigning injury... but the act seemed idiotic. There was a policy he strongly lived by: "If it was something James would do, then he would never do it." Childish, but functional. At least it prevented him from acting like a moron.

Severus thought about trying to sit up and pretend the incident had never happened, but the risk of looking at the Ravenclaw girl was far to great. Instead he chose to keep his forehead on his parchment. Perhaps an idea would seep out of his brain and write itself for him. Eventually his neck started to cramp and he groaned slightly in response. Then there was a light coughing sound beside him, and he jumped up in surprise.