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Els-chan (els_chan) wrote,
@ 2003-11-05 10:16:00
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    Current mood: frustrated

    So, I finally got Chapter 24 of HPMC up. I think this is the most Snapish Snape I've managed so far. Still not sure how happy I am with it, but I think it's the best out of all the other chapters. Probably has something to do with the fact that I've learned to write halfway-decently since then. (keyword = "Halfway") Or maybe it's because I let Wakka beta it for me (more like begged him to...). Either way, the important thing is that it's up, and after a couple more chapters I'll be done. With this part. Damn it, I almost forgot about Transcending Death...fudge. Kill me now.

    Harry Potter and the Mortal Coil

    Chapter 24

    The next day, Harry resumed classes – he had to. The NEWTs were the next week, and he’d already missed a week and a half of lessons. Thanks to what Tom had taught him, he wasn’t falling too far behind; his only problem would be in Potions, which he had that morning.

    He shuffled into the classroom along with the rest of the students, earning him a few wary looks that were quickly stifled by Hermione, who glared at anyone that looked like they wanted to say something to him. She needn’t have worried, since Snape was already in the classroom for a change. Harry desperately resisted the urge to grin stupidly at him before realizing the professor wasn’t even looking at him. His heart sank slightly as he took his seat beside Hermione and began setting up for the day’s lesson.

    Across the room, Draco Malfoy gave Harry a long, hard look. He was just about to say something scathing and highly suggestive when Snape began speaking.

    “Today we will be reviewing the Draught of Peace,” he began, “something which none of you have any excuse for getting wrong. I’m going to write the ingredients and instructions on the board, but you should have them memorized by now. If you don’t, then you’d best learn them soon, or you’ll fail your NEWTs, and I won’t tolerate that. We will be testing these at the end of class, and anyone who does not have it absolutely perfect shall receive zero marks for today. Now get to work!”

    The class worked in silence as usual. Harry still found himself distracted, constantly looking up from what he was doing to see if he could meet Snape’s eyes, but to no avail. The man seemed determined to avoid looking at him. Harry sighed in frustration, earning him an odd look from Hermione, before turning his attention back to the potion to add the final ingredient.

    Which had somehow turned purple and threatened to bubble over.

    “Shit,” Harry hissed, quickly putting out the flame under his cauldron. This only seemed to make things worse, because the potion then turned a mustard color and started burping at him. This, of course, finally drew Snape’s attention, but hardly in the way that Harry wanted it.

    “Potter!” Snape barked, and Harry visibly winced. The professor stalked over to him, clearly displeased. He looked down at Harry’s potion, his brow furrowing. “What on earth did you do to manage this?” he demanded, fixing Harry with a glare. “Nothing in that recipe should have produced this mess.”

    Harry found himself unable to look at Severus. “I...I don’t know, sir,” he replied quietly, which only incensed Snape further.

    “You don’t know?” The silky voice became dangerously quiet. “How could you not know unless you. Weren’t. Paying. Attention. To. What. You. Were. Doing!” He waved his wand over Harry’s cauldron and the contents disappeared. “Zero marks, Potter, and I will see you after class. Everyone else, bottle your potions, clean up, and clear out!” He glided back to the front of the room.

    Harry silently berated himself as the rest of the class filed out. Hermione gave him a sympathetic look before leaving him to his fate. Soon, the only ones left in the room were Harry and Snape.

    “You know better,” Snape suddenly said. Harry averted his eyes. “You know how dangerous it is to lose focus when brewing. You. Know. Better.” He moved to stand in front of Harry. “This is exactly why I knew this would be a bad idea.”

    “No!” Harry quickly defended, but Snape ignored him.

    “Are you aware that had you allowed that potion to boil for only a few seconds more, you would have brought severe harm to yourself? Not to mention those around you. Damn it, you could have killed someone!”

    “I didn’t…”

    “Be silent! That concoction you were brewing was a highly-volatile mixture commonly used as an extremely powerful acid which, when overheated, will explode and shower everything around it, instantly dissolving everything it touches.” Harry paled. “Now do you see the importance of keeping your focus? Do you see why I’m so strict about being precise? Why I want your complete attention?” Harry mutely nodded, unable to lift his gaze from where it had fallen to the floor. Severus sighed. “Harry, look at me.”

    “No,” came the quiet reply. Snape gritted his teeth.

    “Fine. If you won’t grant me the courtesy of looking at me when I’m addressing you, this conversation is over. You may go.” He turned and stalked to his desk. When he looked back, Harry hadn’t moved. “Well? What are you waiting for? You’ve been dismissed.” Harry finally looked up and glared at him. Snape glared right back.

    "Why are you acting like this?” Harry finally asked. “Why are you being so mean to me again? I thought that we...”

    “The fact that we are now involved does not exempt you from being lectured when you make a potentially deadly mistake, Mr. Potter.”

    “Don’t call me that!” Harry yelled, his hands balled into fists at his sides.

    “Then don’t act like an immature brat!” Severus shot back, and immediately regretted it when he saw the hurt expression on Harry’s face. “Look, I...”

    “Just leave me alone,” Harry muttered before Severus could continue. He turned on his heel and stormed out of the classroom just as the first of Snape’s fourth year Hufflepuffs and Gryffindors began arriving.

    Ron gave Hermione a sidelong glance as Harry took his seat beside his best friend in Charms. At Hermione’s nod, Ron turned to him.

    “Hey, are you all right? I heard Snape gave you a hard time again...”

    “I don’t want to talk about it,” Harry grumbled as he pulled his books out of his bag. Ron frowned. He was about to say something when Professor Flitwick called the class to order.

    The lesson went by fairly quickly. When it was over, Harry packed up his books and surprised Ron and Hermione by following them back to Gryffindor Tower. “I really don’t want to face Snape right now,” was the only explanation he offered, and they didn’t question it.

    Both Ron and Harry were free the rest of the day, and since Hermione had classes the entire afternoon the two spent the majority of their time before dinner playing Exploding Snap and Wizard’s Chess, and talking about Quidditch, Hermione, friends, Ron’s family, the baby, and the eventual wedding. Whenever Ron tried to bring up Snape or Harry’s new living conditions, the subject was quickly changed. Eventually, Ron gave up – for the most part. Once dinnertime rolled around, however, he tried one last time.

    “You know, Harry, if he’s being really nasty to you down there...”

    “Drop it, Ron.”

    Ron frowned. “All right, then. Just want you to know that your bed is always available back up with us, is all.”

    Harry gave his friend a sharp look, as if he wanted to snap at him, but at the concerned look on Ron’s face it rapidly softened into a small smile. “Thanks, Ron. You really are the best mate a guy could have, you know.” Ron grinned.

    “I do my best,” he replied, clapping Harry on the back and leading the way out of the portrait hole.

    So, what do you think? Should I just end my life now and be done with it? *cries* I need more time to myself so I can do these things!

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