(A/N – Hiya guys, it's me again! Shame to say that our team didn't win round 2, so we've been moved down from 1st to 5th! What a knockdown! Not to worry though, this is only the beginning and there are still many rounds to go. Right then, the round 3 entry theme is rare pairs, this is counted as a pairing of two characters that have less than 2,000 fan fics in the 'romance' category of them two together (all ratings and all languages). Plus, because I am my team's keeper, I have to use two Slytherins but the big cheese (Firethecanon) said that I could use death eaters as well, because they are past Slytherins. Alright guys, enough from me. Here's the fic, hope you enjoy!)

The Quidditch league FanFiction competition round 3 (rare pairs)

Category – Romance/Friendship

Character 1 – Severus Snape

Character 2 – Bellatrix Lestrange

Not alone

Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry is a British school up north in Scotland. It is a place that teaches the magical arts to wizards and witches of the ages 11 – 17 and is held within the famous Hogwarts castle. Within the castle walls, many different things of the magical world are taught to the many students for them to learn about, such as spells, the art of potion making, the many magical creatures of the world and many other great things. Yes, it is a place where all students, no matter what their blood purity, should feel safe and welcomed.

Severus Snape did not feel that way... or at least, not any more.

The 15 year old black haired boy who was born in Spinner's end of Cookworth used to be a boy with quite a few friends, respect from teachers and apart from the uncommon bullyings from James Potter and his friends, had quite a good school life. However, that changed the day he accidentally called the girl that he had liked (or even loved) a mudblood in the heat of an argument they were having. Since then, Severus's life has been the worst. He had lost all friendship ties that he had had with Lily Evans, lost his Slytherin friends for becoming a 'stroppy old git' as they had called him and had began receiving constant bullyings from James and his group since Lily wasn't stepping in to intervene.

However, that was about to change.

Snape was simply reading a book underneath a tree when he heard them coming. He closed his eyes, blocking the new tears as James Potter and his friends approached him, ready to deal out the daily bullying. As per usual, James pulled out his wand and pointed it at the Slytherin. "Wingardium Leviosa!" he shouted and much to everyone's amusement (except Snape's), the boy in the green house was levitated into the air; he was once again at James Potter's will.

"Confringo!" shouted a high pitched voice.

Suddenly, a blast of fire came from out of nowhere and landed right at James's feet, giving him and all the other Gryffindors quite a jump scare. They looked over to where the blast had come from to see a girl walk out from the bushes, her wand raised and pointed at James. She was dressed in a traditional Hogwarts uniform consisting of a black/grey skirt, socks, sweater vest and black shoes with a white shirt; she wore a green tie to show she was in Slytherin. The girl herself had black curly hair that sprang nearly everywhere on the top of her head and black eyes that could make you feel surrounded in darkness if you stared into them.

This was of course, Bellatrix Black.

"Let him free blood traitor," she commanded with her wand still on James. "He has done nothing hostile towards you." At first, the Gryffindor seemed reluctant to lower his wand but then received a look from his friend Sirius that said 'do as she says'. "Sirius, this is your cousin. Try reason with her." Bellatrix scoffed to which James looked at her. "I would never try to reason with him, not after he became friends with you lot. You've got more chance of me being re-sorted into Gryffindor." Again, Sirius sent the look to James; he followed the advice this time. The Potter lowered his wand slowly to the ground, moving Severus at the same speed. When he touched the floor, Snape quickly picked up his book from the ground and sprang to his feet before running behind his saviour. "Now beat it," the Slytherin girl ordered to James, her cousin and their friends. "Before I decide to curse you." The Gryffindors didn't need to be told twice and they began making their way back to the castle.

As soon as their 'enemies' were gone, Bellatrix turned around to look at her fellow Slytherin housemate. "I can't believe you let yourself get bullied by those pathetic excuses for magical people." Despite the fact that she had already saved him, Severus felt like he had to prove something to this girl. "I could've stood up to them!" he protested to which the girl put a hand on her hip. "Uh huh, sure." she said sarcastically. "It's true!" the boy protested again. "They just caught me by surprise and didn't give me enough time to get my wand out." At this, Bellatrix rolled her eyes. "Sure Snape, sure." She began walking away from him, no longer seeing a reason to be with him.

However, the boy didn't want her to go without asking her a question, he had to know something. "Wait!" he called; she turned around and gave him a questioning look. "Why did you help me? You didn't have to." The Black moved her eyes to look at the sky in thought before looking back at the Slytherin male and shrugging her shoulders. "Just something to do," she said. "I don't really have a lot to do around here considering I don't have any friends." Severus could've sworn he saw his saviour's eyes go down in sadness when she said that. "The only one who really ever speaks to me is my younger sister and you can't really count family as friends." Bellatrix looked to the sky in thought again. "Or at least, I think you can't."

"Well...do you want a friend?" Severus asked hesitantly. The girl looked at him in shock before her stare turned angry. "No!" she practically shouted. "I don't need any friends! I'm fine on my own." Severus took a few cautious steps towards the girl, who now had her arms crossed. Despite the few glares she cast him when he took steps, he eventually reached her. "You don't have to be on your own." She looked him in the eye with a look that held confusion, wonder and... hope? "No one deserves to be on their own. I mean, if bullies like Potter can get friends, I'm sure we can." Bellatrix couldn't help but chuckle slightly at this and Severus let a small smile cross him lips. He reached his arm forward and took her small hand in his own. "You're not alone."

She looked up at him again and gave him a small smile. Fingers intertwined, the two new friends began walking back to the castle.

The two became instantly inseparable. Whenever the students had to gather in the great hall, Snape would sit next to Bellatrix (or 'Bella' as she now let him call her) or she would sit next to him. If they had any classes together, they would be sure to get the same desk or be sat next to one another and on days when Severus would want to go read outside, the girl would sit next to him and read over his shoulder (this of course, proved a great nuisance to James Potter as he could no longer go near his bullying victim without at least receiving a warning glare from his friend's cousin).

The two were currently in sixth year and the pair was currently sitting underneath 'their' tree, Severus reading a book with his friend sitting close to him, reading over his shoulder. Bellatrix was so interested in the book that she didn't notice Severus's newly acquired blush from her being so close. In fact, these blushes began to appear on the boy's face about four months ago, at the start of sixth year. He had discovered that he had... grown feelings... for the Black family member and the fact that she didn't know was making it the more frustrating.

"Sev?" Bellatrix called his nickname to which he didn't reply. "Sev." She called more firmly, he responded this time. "Huh, what?" he replied dumbly. His crush rolled her eyes before speaking again. "You haven't turned the page and I've waiting five minutes. I didn't know you were that slow a reader." Severus seemed to take this to offense and gave his friend a playful shove and glare. "I am not a slow reader!" he protested. "If anything, I got you into reading!" Bella let a fake gasp of hurt escape her throat. "Excuse me!?" she shouted dramatically. "What are you saying exactly?" Now Snape was stumped and his friend could tell from the blank expression that had taken over his confident smirk. "Exactly," she began with her own smirk. "You don't mean anything."

For some reason, the playful argument the pair had just had had put Snape in a mental confrontation with himself. Days before, Professor Horace Slughorn had invited him to attend the Slug club's (which Snape was a member of) Christmas party and the teacher had said to all members that they could bring a guest of whoever they wanted. Obviously, Snape wanted to ask Bella is she would want to go in a first-date type manner. However, every time the boy went to ask the girl, fear would hold him back. What if she didn't like him the way he liked her? What if she said no and ruined the best friendship either of them had ever had? What if...

"Sev! You there, dumbo?" the young witch called to her friend. Snape, who had had his eyes shut in thought, snapped them open with frightening speeds. "DoyouwanttogototheSlugclub'sChristmaspartywithme? " Not understanding a single word, Bellatrix cocked her head to the side and looked at her friend as if he had gone mad. "What?" she asked. Severus took a deep breath and looked at her before looking down and shyly putting his hands behind his back. "Bella, would you like to go to the Slug club's Christmas party with me?" Now understanding, Bellatrix's eyes widened and her cheeks acquired their own blush. However, this was Bellatrix Black and she wasn't about to let herself become embarrassed. "So, why you asking me Sev?" she began cockily. "Everyone else rejected you?" Severus moved his eyes from left to right rapidly in embarrassment. "No, you're the first one I've asked." Bellatrix became more timid when she heard this, putting her hands in her lap and lowering her head "Oh."

The boy was the first of the two to raise their head. "So, what do you say Bella?" he asked. His friend raised her own head to look into his eyes; there was hope and fear at the same time. She gave him a small smile. "Alright then, Sev." he smiled at her in relief and happiness. "Great." The two stood up from the base of their tree and began walking back toward the castle for their next lesson was about to begin; they were probably going to be late anyway but they thought they may as well at least attempt to be on time. They intertwined their fingers and whilst walking back, Bella rested her head on Severus's shoulder but not before whispering with a smirk...

"Sev, I'll be waiting for you when you're ready to ask me on a date."