Title; Sea of Emotions
Rating; M (to be on the safe side)
Disclaimer; Severus Snape and Harry Potter is (c)copyright of J.K. Rowling. No copyright infringement is intended.
Email address for FB; morganalebeau
Summary; Fawkes meddles and Severus survives, only to find a very curious and eager Harry Potter waiting for him.
Sea Of Emotions
Lost in your dark eyes
I have seen your shadow world
Moments of madness
Slowly drowning in your love
I promise you nothing
But this earthly misery
Would you share it with me?
High, much higher than moon
Flies away the angel of love
Deep, much deeper and true
Is the sea of emotions we share
The poem so beautiful
Can turn into nightmare before we know
The secret bound of our blood oath
Keeps us together until the dawn
[Music: Jarmo Kylmänen, Lyrics: Juha Kylmänen]
The phoenix swept into the Shack, carefully manoeuvring through the open door and landing near the fallen body of Severus Snape. Still warm blood clung to Fawkes' feet as he toddled toward the Potions Master's lifeless body. He cocked his head and studied the Slytherin who possessed the heart of a true Gryffindor. Therefore Fawkes mourned the loss as greatly as he had mourned Albus Dumbledore's passing.
When he had lost Dumbledore, Fawkes had understood and approved of the wizard's decision. Dumbledore had been dying due to the curse he had so foolishly exposed himself to and his death had served a greater purpose. Snape's death however was a different matter. Although necessary, it was too brutal, too undeserving an end for a wizard who had risked his life countless times in the service of Light.
Fawkes moved closer and took in the damage Voldemort and Nagini had done. Snape's throat had been slashed first. That alone would have eventually killed the Potions Master. There had been no reason for Voldemort to order Nagini to attack, except for the perverse pleasure the dark wizard would find in such a cruel act. Where Dumbledore's death had been swift and merciful, Snape had suffered.
Fawkes climbed onto Snape's shoulder and buried his feet into the fabric of the Potions Master's robes, which were stained with his blood. He was very much aware of the limitations to his healing capacity, but Fawkes was determined to try. He had waited for Harry and his friends to leave and had then immediately headed inside. Snape hadn't been dead for long. Maybe he could still bring him back.
Crystalline tears flowed from Fawkes' eyes and they dripped onto the slashed flesh that had once been Snape's throat. He continued to weep, determined to undo most of the damage Voldemort had done. Fawkes kept a close eye on the Potions Master's face. He watched for any rise of the wizard's chest, which would assure him that Snape was breathing again. He moved closer, settled his body in the crook of the wizard's neck and wept silently, hoping against hope that he wasn't too late.
The battle was over. Harry still had a hard time believing it, but he was slowly beginning to understand that they had won. Once the first round of commotion died down, he settled in a corner of the Great Hall, talking to several students, assuring them that the Dark Lord was indeed no more.
Looking at them now, he found that House rivalry no longer existed. Slytherins, Hufflepuffs, Ravenclaws and Gryffindors were all working together in order to help the wounded. Amidst of chaos and destruction, seeing such a unified front brought a smile to his face. He grabbed onto the hope that some good had come out of this tragedy after all.
Harry looked up and sighed deeply at seeing Remus. His friend looked rumpled and was bleeding from several minor wounds, but he was alive, which was the only thing that mattered. "You're alive!" he said, feeling eternally grateful that Death had spared his mentor. Remus sat down next to him and wrapped an arm around it. Grateful for the support, Harry leaned against him, savouring the closeness they shared. It brought him comfort when he so desperately needed it.
"So far, everyone seems to have made it out alive," Remus whispered into Harry's ear. "Sure, there are lots of injured, and some might carry reminders of the fight for the rest of their lives, but they will live, Harry." On a deeply instinctual level, Remus realized Harry needed to be reassured. The young man sitting next to them had faced Voldemort in the heat of battle and, miraculously, had come out of it alive.
"I can't believe it," Harry admitted as he closed his eyes and allowed himself to enjoy Remus' company. "I never expected to survive that final battle."
"You did great," Remus said, suspecting Harry needed to hear it. "Tom's gone and will never come back." Like Harry, he too wanted to believe the threat Tom Riddle had presented was gone and like Harry, he was afraid to believe they could leave in peace now. Tom Riddle had terrorized the wizarding world for a long time. What would it be like, Remus wondered, to leave in a world without the Dark Lord in it?
Harry sighed and nodded. He pulled away from Remus and scanned his surroundings. Hermione, Ron and Neville were assisting Madam Pomfrey, and even professor Trelawney was tending to the wounded. "What will happen now?" Suddenly, Harry shivered. It wasn't due to any cold he felt… It wasn't due to the air of destruction that still occupied the Great Hall. It was something else, but he had no idea what. That worried him.
"Anyone with severe injuries will be transported to St. Mungo's," Remus replied, rubbing Harry's shoulder in an effort to comfort him, as he had noticed the shivering. "Then we will rebuild Hogwarts and… Who knows what will happen after that? Aurors will probably hunt down the remaining Death Eaters. In the end, everything will settle down and there will be peace. But we still have a long road ahead of us."
Peace… Harry couldn't believe he would be able to live in peace. Could the sword of Damocles that had hung over his head for his entire life finally be gone? Was he truly free now that Tom Riddle was gone? The arrival of professor McGonagall pulled him from his musings. The fierce witch headed straight for him and Harry automatically got to his feet, wondering if trouble had found him already.
"Mister Potter." She hated doing this right now, but it couldn't wait.
"Professor," Harry said, acknowledging her. "What's wrong?" The nagging sensation became stronger.
"Am I correct to assume that you entered the Headmaster's office prior to the fight?"
Harry nodded and felt Remus' hand settle down on his shoulder in order to give him a reassuring squeeze. It was then that he realized that Remus came as close to a parents as anyone possibly could – and Remus had survived. He hadn't lost him the way he had lost Sirius!
Minerva frowned. "Then I do not understand this."
"Maybe I can help? If you tell me what's wrong?" Harry offered. He hoped it was just something small as he needed a break from the problems Fate tended to present him with.
"The Headmaster's office remains closed to anyone who wants to enter it." She had tried every password Albus had ever used, had tried to convince the gargoyle to allow her to enter. She had tried everything possible, but nothing worked.
"That's odd. I didn't even need a password to enter. The gargoyle simply moved aside and let me in." Harry's eyes widened in remembrance. How could he have forgotten about it? "Oh, the pensieve!"
"Pensieve, Harry?" Remus didn't like the expression on Harry's face. The young man suddenly looked stricken and increasingly pale.
"Snape's memories!" Harry tensed. In the midst of everything he had forgotten about the memories which the Potions Master had entrusted him with! They still swirled in the pensieve!
"Please make sense, Mister Potter and do so quickly!" They were wasting precious time as far as she was concerned. Furthermore, Harry's expression showed worry, which caused her to grow concerned in turn.
"Before… he died," Harry swallowed hard, his emotions suddenly overwhelming him. Everything came rushing back to him; finding Snape in the Shack, bleeding to death and the tears – those precious memories! "Before Snape died, he gave me his memories and I watched them." Harry turned about, grabbed hold of Remus' tattered coat and started to tremble. He had to tell them – had to get this off his chest. They had to know the truth. Snape deserved nothing less! "Snape always was Dumbledore's spy, Remus. He followed Dumbledore's orders until the very last."
"Harry, I know you are upset, but…" Remus didn't get a chance to finish though.
"No, you must understand! Both of you!" Harry said in a firm voice. He couldn't allow them to harbour misconceptions about the Potions Master. They needed to hear the truth so they would understand! "Snape never betrayed Dumbledore. When he cast the Killing Curse, it was at Dumbledore's order! You saw his blackened hand! The Headmaster was dying and Dumbledore used it against Voldemort… By making Snape kill him, Voldemort would stop distrusting their spy! Don't you understand? Snape became Headmaster because Dumbledore arranged it that way! Earlier, in the Shack…" And he grew silent, remembering Snape's final moments. Chills ran down his spine, finally realizing the entire truth – the sacrifice Snape had made. "Snape allowed Voldemort to kill him! Voldemort had to be certain he was the true master of the Elder Wand! He would never have used it in battle against me if he hadn't been completely sure he was in command!" Harry shook his head, growing angrier by the minute. "Snape went to the Shack knowing he would die there! He didn't even defend himself! I saw him… We watched the attack… Oh, I…" Harry felt nauseous. His breathing sped up and he started to feel light-headed when everything hit him at once.
"Sit down!" Minerva, still trying to process everything she had just heard, acted, and pushed Harry back onto the bench. "Mister Potter, calm down!"
Remus sat down next to him and rubbed his back. Harry tried to calm down – he really did – but knowing the truth made him angry. So damn angry. Not with Snape, but with the universe in general. "This isn't fair," he managed in-between heavy breaths.
"Life seldom is, Harry." Remus exchanged a look with Minerva. If what Harry had told them was true then…
Minerva answered Remus' look with one of her own. By Merlin, if Harry had told them the truth, and she had no reason to doubt his words, then… "I called him a coward!"
Harry managed to compose himself as a sense of purpose started to fill him. His duties weren't done yet. Yes, he had destroyed Voldemort, but he had watched another wizard die that night. Snape was still in the Shack. He shuddered at the thought of what would happen to the body, should Aurors come upon it. As far as they knew, Snape was a traitor who had killed Dumbledore. They might take out their frustration on the fallen Potions master! "Professor, you must find Kingsley and tell him the truth! Tell him that Snape was loyal to the Headmaster to the end. The Aurors need to know!"
Seeing the urgency in his eyes, she nodded. She had come here in order to enlist Harry's help in opening up the Headmasters' office, but realized this needed to be taken care of first. If Snape had indeed been loyal to Dumbledore then he deserved their respect. "Harry, are you absolutely sure Snape acted on the Headmaster's orders?"
"I am certain! Ask Dumbledore! Find a painting and question him if you must, but please… Tell Kingsley first. If the Aurors find Snape before I do…"
She understood his urgency then. "I will talk to Kingsley."
Harry drew in a deep breath and got to his feet again, closely followed by Remus. "There is something I must do."
He didn't need to explain his words to them – they understood. Remus kept his hand on Harry's shoulder and pulled the young man closer against him. "We will go the Shack and bring back his body. That's what you want, isn't it?"
A determined expression appeared on Harry's face as he looked at his friend. "He deserves to come home." Switching his gaze to professor McGonagall, he added, "Everyone needs to know the truth before we bring him back. I don't want anyone attacking him because they still believe Snape is a traitor."
"I am not sure I can convince everyone that quickly," Minerva said realistically, "but I will make sure they won't be any attacks on his person."
"Thank you…" Harry paused, looked about and found Hagrid in the far corner of the Hall. "We need Hagrid," he told Remus, once professor McGonagall had left in search of Kingsley. "He can carry Snape, hide him from their eyes." He didn't want to levitate Snape and put him on display that way. He had developed too much respect for the wizard during the last few hours.
"Then we will enlist Hagrid's help." Remus knew Hagrid would follow Harry unconditionally. "How are you holding up?" He couldn't help worry about the young man standing next to him. Harry had to be exhausted, but the eyes that met his, showed fierce resolve. No matter what would happen Harry was going to bring Severus home.
"I need to do this, Remus. I need to do this in person and I need to do this now." The mere thought that Aurors might maim Snape's remains in a fit of anger made him restless. "I owe him so much, Remus."
"Why don't you tell me while we make our way to the Shack?" Remus suggested, hoping that talking about past events might help Harry easier deal with them. He was a good listener, at least, he had been told so.
Determinedly Harry nodded. Yes, he would tell Remus – and Hagrid. Everyone needed to know the truth about Severus Snape!