(For secretly looking out for her all year.)
“And she’s done it! Harri has caught the golden snitch! What a save!”
“And nearly took half the staff out with her, haha”
Harri and Hermione, back in time, are sitting watching the whomping willow. Harri, lost in thought, brings up:
“Do you remember, how when Professor Lupin changed… Snape protected us?”
“What about it?”
“Didn’t it seem… kind, of him? To do that?”
“Well, yes, but he’s our professor... he couldn't just let us die, could he?”
“I… I guess not.”
“Honestly Harri, he's not as bad as you think. Dumbledore trusts him; that has to count for something, doesn't it?”
“No, it's not that, I mean- …I don’t know.”
Harri is watching Snape on the marauder's map idly.
…she watches him walk to and linger in front of the Mirror of Erised…
Snape visits the mirror occasionally, to see Lily. But today, Lily doesn't appear in the mirror. Instead…
He casts his eyes down, wrenching internally. As he's trying to process what he's seeing, and feeling, Harri quietly enters the room.
She walks up from behind him and he makes eye contact with her reflection so she doesn't think she has to alert him to her presence, but his emotional state seems not just fraught and pensive but more... vulnerable than she's ever seen before. Whatever she was going to say to him fades away to the back of her mind; What was that look he gave me...?
She turns to look at him directly, trying to read him and get him to meet her eyes, but he seems to be focused on the mirror, or otherwise looking off to the floor on the other side. She considers touching his arm briefly, but instead decides to cautiously inquire:
Which does get his sharp attention, but instead of looking at her he looks into her reflection again, startled. He scrutinizes the mirror, tilting his head with incredulous curiousity as if trying to get a better angle on it. She looks between the mirror, and Snape, and back to the mirror again, and then decides to finally touch his arm to get him to look at her.
This nearly knocks him over with shock and the unwelcome realization that she's in the room, behind him. He quickly tries to parse together if this is just an extention of the mirror's magic somehow, before it becomes clear that this is... actually her.
Hold on... was it her all this time?
Before he can process it fully, defensive anger washes over him and he demands to know what she's doing here. Before she can answer him ("I-I was just-") he overrides the question with:
"How long. Have you been standing there."
"I... thought you saw me."
Her response is stunned; she's not sure of what's going on and startled from the dramatic shift in atmosphere between them, which had been so delicate just moments before. Snape is unrelenting:
"I-I don't know, just recently…"
Harri tries to assuage his anger:
"I didn't see anything...!"
This gives Snape pause, and he prompts her to elaborate with a testing look.
Her words giving unintentional parallel to his own situation drains the bristling accusation out of his posture and his eyes momentarily deflect to the left. In the silence he’s given her, Harri is struck with an impulse, and asks before she can stop herself:
"Professor… What did you see…? In the mirror.”
Snape looks up sharply, but after a moment's pause his response is a curt "...nothing." before swooping through the exit, leaving Harri alone in the room without another word.
She walks to the mirror, expecting to see her family.
His reflection still standing there.
Moody: "You look like a drowned rat."
Snape, recently pulled out of a lake: "shhhut up."
Harri: I-I think mine was actually supposed to be.... Cho.
Harri, awkward: I’m um..... I'm in love. With her.
Ron: You're WHAT?
Harri: A-And since Cedric got Cho instead, and Hermione was taken by Krum-
Hermione: You're in love. With Cho??? Cho Chang??
Ron: Wait a minute, what am I then?? Bloody hell Harri, do I really rank below SNAPE to you?
Harri: N-No--! Look Ron, I wasn't the one who went around kidnapping people, all I'm saying is maybe they.... picked someone at random. ...Because Cho was taken. Maybe it has to be someone you.... *Harri goes red, her heart beating in her ears* …Someone you really love.
Ron: Blimey Harri, I had no idea....
Hermione: Still though, SNAPE? Of all people- he's a teacher!
Ron: Kind of funny though, seeing him all washed up like that.... Maybe they picked him because they knew it would make you laugh, at least.
Harri: Haha, yeah....
Ron: ...So is that why you went with Draco to the ball? As a coverup, because you're really... you're really a-
Hermione: Oh, leave her alone Ron. *begins to push him out* ...Congratulations, Harri.
Harri, sheepish: T-Thanks.
Snape: The story is- as I'm sure you've heard it- that I, capable of rescuing myself should you fail.... elected to be put under when the merpeople could not find a suitable candidate so as to minimize the risk of endangerment to a student you would care less than a loved one for.
Snape rises, setting his hands on his desk confontationally: I did not... elect. To anything.
Harri: ...Then why did-
Snape, folding his arms: Why indeed, Potter.
Harri: ...Why did you call me here.
This catches Snape off-guard, and he falters long enough for her to continue.
Harri: You know you didn't ask to be put under, I know you didn't ask to be put under...
Her tone rises and her face burns.
Harri: So what am I here for?? So you can.... mock me, for... for caring about you?
Her furious admission of the elephant in the room stuns the both of them, leaving Harri shaking and Snape at a loss for words. Conscious of her, he tempers his reproach.
Snape: ...To talk.
Harri: About what.
He gestures at her emotional display.
Each word is sharp with accusation. He pauses before continuing, and by comparison his next words seem almost... gentle, despite being firm.
Snape: ...The both of us.
Snape, bitterly furious: ...If I had had my way you would have never suffered such an upbringing. I'll never understand what Dumbledore was thinking, leaving you with such disgraceful muggles, when I could have--
Snape stops himself.
Harri: ...When you could have... what?
Snape: ...Nothing. What's done is done.