Seventeen Years

There's something that's said that sits in my head
It's been there too long, it's killing me slow
It's rolling around, it's pushing me down
It's keeping the good part of me closed

Can't you see?
That when I find you, I'll find me
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always

My only weakness is knowing your secrets
Holding them close, and holding them tight
I know the way to silently make you smile with my eyes
When you're trying to fight

Can't you see?
When I find you, I'll find me
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always

Cause when I find you, I'll find me

Can't you see?
When I find you, I'll find me
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always
Oh, I need you to know, today, I'll wait for you always

When I find you, when I find you
I'll find me

When I Find You

Slowly, he moved his arms so that hers were now on top of his, and following his instincts, he lifted a hand to move a strand of hair from her face.

"Hermione…" he whispered, and she looked up at him…and he saw his moment.

Acting quickly, not letting the moment pass by, he kissed her.

It was soft at first, their mouths gently brushing against each other, trying to gauge the others reaction to the kiss, and after a moment they sunk into it. His tongue gently brushed against her lips, and she opened up to him and suddenly there was nothing but pure heat and the sensation of falling as his blood pounded in his ears.

At the sensation, he knew what was happening…

this was why they called it falling in love.

Slowly, they pulled back, both of them equally aware of the fact that she had to go now, otherwise it would be impossible.

Wordlessly, she summoned her clothes and held the pile in her hand and looked up at him, her eyes filled with such an aching sadness, he felt his own heart ache as well. She slipped her wand into her pocket, and pulled out the Time Turner, but just before she started to turn it, on an impulse, he grasped her arm an pulled her to him for one last kiss, and then let her go with three parting words…

"I'll find you…"

Hermione simply nodded, and then disappeared from before his eyes, fading into the past.

"I'll find you," he whispered to the empty air, knowing that it would probably be many years before he took any chances, but he would keep his promise.

Severus Snape felt himself slightly drained from the process of keeping himself standing for so long, and dropped back down to the couch, still staring at the empty space where she had been only moments before, and he felt his heart clench at the sight and feeling of being alone once more.

He had most certainly not expected this to happen…but it had.

He had found someone that he could actually see himself falling in love with; correction: that he had fallen in love with.

And now he'd just watch her leave, so that he could find a way to survive in a world that now could no longer be his.

He already knew what he was going to have to do, and even though he loathed the idea, he knew that he had no other choice. He was going to have to live on the other side; in the Muggle world. He leaned back against the back of the couch and let out a deep sigh.

That meant no more potions and no more wand.

However…he could still Apparate if he needed to. And, he had his Potions certification that he could easily turn into a Muggle certification of a Doctorate in Applied Chemistry…

As these thoughts ran through his head, he quickly came up with a plan.

He would become a Muggle and obtain a secondary Muggle education, as well as doing everything he could to change what he looked like and who he was.

It would be long and take more than a few years to give her what he felt that she deserved, because, Merlin knows, she deserved way more than him. She deserved the best that he could possibly give her, which meant that he would have to put forth his best efforts.

Slowly, he stood and made his way up the old stairs, up to what had once been his parents' bedroom.

Glancing around he could tell that Hermione had cleaned the room, most likely the instant that she'd stepped foot into it, because he hadn't been in it in over ten years and yet there was not a speck of dust to be found. Her handiwork for sure.

Walking over to the closet, he pulled down an old suitcase from the top shelf and glanced at the clothes in the closet…and then put it back and closed the doors.

No. If he was going to start over, he was going to start over with a clean slate, with nothing that would ever remind him of this place.

He would take nothing with him except for what he had to. Luckily, he already knew where he was going to stay.

He still felt slightly guilty for how he'd crept into the young woman's thoughts without her permission, but he hadn't been able to resist when he'd awoken and seen the soft look on her face. He'd wanted to know what had given her that look, and he'd come across the memory of her family's old summer home in Ireland, and felt her feelings of happy memories tinged with an overwhelming sadness, so he'd quickly pulled out and feigned sleep.

With a soft sigh, and an uncharacteristic gesture of his hand running through his hair, he walked back down the stairs and made his way to the front door, absently rubbing his wand in his hand, knowing it was going to be one of the last times that he ever held it in his fingers.

Everyone already assumed he was dead by now, so if he used his wand, the Ministry would know in an instant that he was still alive.

Quickly, he lifted the Secret-Keeping spell off of his residence and then Apparated, a distinct picture in his mind of a certain house amidst green hills.

And then he was gone…

PART 1/4

Lyrics by Joshua Radin