I

His body turned numb, losing all of its strength. Breath left him quickly; his lungs writhed in pain. His face went pale, paler than the whiteness of the curtains lying on the floor. His legs collapsed onto each other. His heart thumped one hard beat and then stopped. His hand reached for his chest as he fell to the ground. For a moment he thought he too were dead.

Lying before him was the only love he had ever known. Her body was slightly older and shapelier than he had ever remembered it to be. Her auburn hair was haloed on the floor. The eyes that he had never ceased to forget were now cold, distant and draining of the life which so fully encompassed them before. She was dead. He had tried so hard to save her.

And then he knew he had done nothing at all. He had never repaid her for her years of friendship and devotion. He had never had a chance to slip a "thank you" to her for the numerous things she had done for him. He had greedily taken her time, her love, her care, because on the inside of him laid a lonely monstrous thing, which only wanted love. He had only stabbed her time and time again, until one stab, completely invisible to her eyes, had finally finished her off. But most terribly of all, he had never apologized for the words he uttered, which were the bane of his existence.

A baby cried in the corner, his mother's illustrious emerald green eyes in its eye sockets. It wailed louder and louder, as if it felt the pain which piled on top of more pain and remorse inside of his being. He was breaking slowly—a hammer smashing a peg through the left side of his chest. He felt tears spill out of his eyes, and drip coldly on his cheeks, burning them as if they were acidic. He too wailed, louder and more painfully than the infant.

"I loved you," he managed to say unperceivably through tears. He repeated it over and over as he fumbled with something in his pocket. In memory, he took out a small notebook covered by small doodles and the curly handwriting of the dead women on the floor.

He crawled over to her, too weak to stand. He foolishly checked her pulse, praying to whatever God was watching him from above that she was still alive, albeit barely. But she was not. His hands gave out. He lied next to her, his face now facing hers.

He moved the curtains of black hair from his face before moving her hair aside. He placed the small notebook in her hands, which were just in front of her face. Proceeding, he moved her hands to her flat abdomen. He wiped his tears away.

He scanned the woman's face carefully, relishing the view of its profound beauty even in death. With his mind, he took a picture—one he would never forget. He sat up and grabbed her, clutching her to his chest, crying soundlessly as he did so. "You were loved," he whispered into her ear, knowing she was too far away to hear. "You were so loved. Even more than you knew."

He was unwilling to let go of her. She was his only savior, the only person who could ever laugh with him and the only person who had taken the time to shovel the meters of dirt before reaching the diamond at the core. But now she was gone, now finally in his arms, but too far away to ever truly reach out to her. He could still hear her laugh ringing in his ears. He could still feel the tears she had cried the first time they had kissed. He could still feel the pain of letting her go so many years ago.

He set her back on the ground, his entire body only growing weaker with every moment. "You were wonderful," he could have continued to praise her in her dead state, but he hadn't had the strength nor the audacity to.

He lied next to her, wrapping his arms around her, securing her tightly against his broad, painfully beating chest. He knew no one would come to them. He inhaled her scent—death, blood, dirt, but above it all was the scent of warm gingerbread taken right out of the oven on Christmas morning. He kissed the spot of her neck that he had kissed the first night they had told each other the three words that meant more than the entirety of the universe to him.

Daringly, he pressed his lips against her lifeless ones, hoping he would feel the same spark he had felt so many times before. But there was only the dullness of death on them. A short few seconds after kissing the blue tinted lips of the dead women, he let her go. Her body was limp against him. He rolled onto his back, and somehow her head followed him, landing on his chest just as it did the first night they had taken each other in a symphony of lust and love.

When he had finally let go, still unable to think of her as the dead woman on the floor, he left his heart in that room, never to leave it again. He could never have the only thing he had ever wanted; nay needed more than he needed food, water and shelter from the storms which now loomed over his head.

As he exited the house, rain poured on his lank, black hair. His face was more sallow than ever. He did not dare to let his foot step off the threshold. In a spur of brevity, he stepped away, knowing that he would die if he did not leave the spot.

As he walked on the pathway from the house, he felt a cold hand upon his shoulder. He turned, seeing the black eyes just as dark as his own look upon him with satisfaction. A long, black, billowing cloak consumed his feet. He felt himself being shackled to the stone pathway, slowly being imprisoned by the enigma before him. Bitter cold encompassed his body, numbing it until he felt hypothermic.

The figure patted his back. When it opened its mouth a crackly voice came out. "You did well," it said. It disappeared in a flash of dark light. He had given death another soul so easily. It was not just any soul he had given death. It was the soul of a picturesque woman, who he had seen as the image of perfection. Despite her profound beauty, she had a heart of gold, and bravery which outshone that of an entire army.

He found himself in a place he had never wanted to be.

Death surrounded him, breathing down his neck. He wore a white turtle neck to secure a minuscule amount of warmth. The color of death's eyes dimmed his world. He wore black from head to toe for he knew no other color. Death caged him as a relentless warden. He wore buttons to never lose the feeling. Deaths' cape shrouded him. He wore one for he brought death.

Severus Snape was a reaper of lives.


A/N: If you like this work, check out my other story: The Light and the Dark. Please review. This will be a shorter story—possibly lasting for several chapters. Tell me what you think. Question me if you dare…