Snape's Past

An iridescent sheen rose to the surface of the potion, lifting off in sheets that became white wafts of smoke that issued from the cauldron in curls. As they separated from the liquid, dark snakelike grooves seemed to cut their way through the film, exposing the inky solution beneath, giving the impression of an icy, breaking, windswept landscape. It was beautiful, and he was transfixed.

It must have shown on his face, because he had to act very quickly to keep himself from falling head first into his cauldron when something violent stuck the back of his head with the clear intention of knocking him in.

While he had only just barely managed to keep his nose out of the potion, which would have been disastrous at best, some of his hair had not been so lucky and while he could care less about the scorched ends of his already uneven haircut, his perfect draught had now turned a sickening brown and the elegant wafts became an oily billow. He wasn’t surprised to whip around and see Potter falling triumphantly back into his seat at the desk behind him, mocking laughter rippling through his comrades, but he was furious.

Furious with himself, for letting his guard down. Furious at Potter. And furious at incompitent Professor Slughorn, who busied himself with dousing saccharine compliments over his favorite students, conveniently missing Severus’s near constant abuse. He never did anything. He would never. do. anything.

And although he knew he would be able to recreate his assignment before class was out, he would have to begin now. He fought the urge to take the remains of his ruined potion and dump it on Potter. He knew that wouldn’t go unnoticed. Instead, he whisked it bitterly to the drainage basin, enduring the simpering remarks from the Gryffindors behind him: “Awww, messed up the potion, did we Sev?” “That’s okay, Snivelus, no need to cry. We all make mistakes.” “Yeah, just look at your mum.” That earned Pettigrew a chorus of morbid coos and a slap on the back. Severus would have hit him harder. Much, much harder. His hand twitched and his mind boiled with curses, each more severe than the last, the heat of which he could feel reach his face. But he forced himself to his work. Later, Severus.


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