What Once Was BrokenAuthor:
Alternate DH Universe in which Severus survived, Harry and Ginny never got together and Draco was nice (sort of).Summary: Ask me why I keep on loving you when it's clear that you don't feel the same way for me... the problem is that as much as I can't force you to love me, I can't force myself to stop loving you.
R for languageWarnings:
IJ/LJ AWDT Comm prompt: "I can't do this anymore."Disclaimer:
All recognizable characters and plots from the Harry Potterverse belong to JK Rowling and various publishing companies and movie studios. I am not making any money from this. I am simply doing this for the fun of it. Any plot devices and original characters belong to me alone and are simply a figment of my imagination.Author's Note:
This does not start off happy.
"Well? Do you have anything to say or are you going to sit there and say nothing – as usual?"
Harry stared at the man across from him, his green eyes dull with pain. He closed his eyes and slowly set down the spoon he had been holding. Taking a deep fortifying breath, he opened his eyes and pinned the other man to his chair with their intensity.
"I can't do this anymore." Harry said in a soft voice.
"At least we agree on something, Potter." came the derisive snort.
"No, Severus. You misunderstood me. I can't do this anymore." Harry waved a hand between the two of them.
"What are you on about, boy?"
"That. That right there. I've tried, I've really tried, Severus to be whatever it is you want me to be. I give, you take, insulting me, my family, my sense of self, my very being along the way. And it still isn't enough for you."
"Your melodrama astounds me." Severus stated, rolling his eyes for emphasis.
"What do I have to do to get you to treat me like a human being? Is that too much to ask for?" Harry asked, trying to hold back the tears he could feel gathering in his eyes.
"Spare me your tears, Potter. I, unlike your adoring fan club, are immune to them."
"Answer my question, Severus Snape!" Harry snarled, grabbing his plate and throwing it across the room. Severus arched an eyebrow at the childish display of temper, inciting Harry's anger even further.
"I will treat you how I see fit. You were always a willful child when you were in school and I see you have not changed now that you consider yourself an adult."
"Is that all you see me as? A child? So I suppose you've spent the last five years fucking a 'child', then?"
"Your language is as crude as your manners. And to answer your question, you are nothing more than a convenient bed-warmer."
"So it was about the sex?"
"Basically." Severus stated. Harry stared at him for a full three minutes, the silence between them oppressive.
"I guess there's nothing left to say."
"Agreed." Severus nodded.
"Excuse me. I have some marking to do." Harry turned on his heel and left the room. Severus sat back in his seat, satisfied that his lover finally understood where they stood.
- - -
Severus returned to his rooms (he never thought of them as their rooms, even though Harry had been living with him for almost eight years, expecting to see Harry in the small kitchenette preparing dinner. Instead, he found all the lights off except for the small lamp on his side table, a sheet a parchment resting against it with his name. Angry, he snatched it up and opened it, already recognizing Harry's handwriting. Thinking of numerous ways he would berate Harry for it later, he quickly skimmed it, stopped in stunned surprise, and went back to read it more slowly from the beginning.Severus,
I am sitting at the desk in my classroom, wondering how to start this letter, and a quote I read somewhere comes to mind.
"Ask me why I keep on loving you when it's clear that you don't feel the same way for me... the problem is that as much as I can't force you to love me, I can't force myself to stop loving you. ~Author Unknown"
Sums up what I'm feeling quite nicely at the moment, I think.
Never mistake that, for I do love you, the only way I know how. It seems that something I was waiting for, is never going to happen – for you to love me in return.
I finally came to that realization when you called me 'boy' and 'Potter' yesterday. It's what you've always called me, even during sex. I guess I was too blind with my love for you to see it.
Ron, Hermione, Minerva, hell even Draco warned me that you wouldn't change, even for me. So I tried to change for you, be what you wanted, act how you wanted, let you insult me whenever you perceived a wrong. But it wasn't enough for you.
I can't be that person you want me to be anymore, Merlin knows I've tried my damnedest to do so.
So...I am leaving. I know I'm not wanted.
Minerva didn't even try to talk me out of leaving school all together, as I've been the best Defense teacher she's had here since Remus. I've given her a couple of names I'm sure will do as good a job, if not better than me.
May you find the happiness I can't give you.
He sat, stunned into silence. Of all the things he imagined, Harry leaving him wasn't one of them. He stormed from his rooms, his expression thunderous. Students moved out of his way as he made his way to the other side of the castle, to the rooms Harry used to live in before moving in with him. He pounded on the portrait guarding the room, startling the snake resting there so badly it left its portrait never to be seen again. But Harry didn't come out.
"He's gone, Severus." came a tired voice. He whirled around, seeing Albus in the portrait across the way.
"What do you mean, he's gone?" Severus snarled.
"He handed Minerva his resignation late last night and left immediately after. We do not know where he went."
"Of all the stupid, idiotic-!"
"Shut up, Severus!" Albus hissed in anger. It so surprised Severus, his mouth closed with a snap. Albus had never been this angry at him, even when he was alive.
"I beg your pardon?"
"You'll beg nothing from me, young man! You've run off the only person who could possibly care about you and I for one am glad of it. You never deserved him but I thought his kind and giving nature could soften you somehow. I see now how wrong I was. He was the best thing that ever happened to you and now you've lost him, possibly forever. I hope you're satisfied." Albus turned on his heel and left the portrait, leaving Severus to stare at the blank canvas. He scowled darkly.
"I need no one, old man. No one." He stormed back to his rooms.
- - -
As the years went on, Severus began to realize that he missed Harry. It started with the small things, missing his favorite foods at breakfast, or the way Harry would rub his shoulders after a particular grueling brewing session. It grew into missing his company when they were marking papers together, coming up with creative insults for poorly written essays, debating the uses of belladonna in certain potions.
And the nights were the worst. He missed snuggling up to Harry's warm back during the night, or the way Harry would run his fingers through his hair after sex, simply content to hold one another in the dark and the silence.
Severus finally admitted to himself that he missed Harry.
- - -
He happened across Harry by chance one afternoon as he was leaving the apothecary. He spotted Harry coming out of the Quidditch store and quickly made his way across to him.
"Hello, Harry." Severus began. Startled, Harry looked up at him in surprise.
"Severus. Fancy running into you here."
"I was picking up an order at the apothecary. You?"
"New broom." Harry replied, holding up the shrunken package.
"What happened to your old one?" Severus couldn't help but ask. Before he could answer, a young boy, about 11 years old, hair as dark as Harry's, ran up to Harry, wrapping his arms around the other man's waist.
"Dad! Did you get it?" Harry looked down at the boy and smiled, holding up the package. The little boy whooped in delight. "Wait till I tell Lily! She's going to be so jealous!"
"You are not to tease your sister, you know how moody she gets. And besides, your Papa would be angry."
"Yeah, yeah." Suddenly remembering they had an audience, both men turned to look at Severus. Severus felt a staggering pain in his chest as he took in the sharp cheekbones, small pert nose and stormy gray eyes. He would know those eyes anywhere.
"Who are you?" the little boy asked. Severus knelt down until he was eye-level.
"I'm Professor Snape." The little boy stuck out a hand.
"Jamie Malfoy. It's a pleasure to meet you, sir. Do you teach at Hogwarts?"
"I do. I'm the Potions teacher there."
"Then I will see you in September, sir." Jamie smiled. He turned to look at his father. "Papa said to meet us at the Owl Emporium when you were done."
"I'll meet you there. I'd like to talk to Professor Snape for a moment."
"Okay." Jamie turned on his heel and went running the opposite direction before Harry could warn him to slow down. Taking a deep breath, he turned to look back at his ex-lover.
"Yours?" Severus asked around the lump in his throat. Harry nodded. "He's a well-mannered young man."
"Unlike me, you mean."
"You made your feelings perfectly clear about me, Severus." Harry interrupted.
"And I will admit I was wrong."
"Don't you think it's a bit late for that?" Harry scoffed.
"I waited for you, you know. I moped for almost a year before Draco told me to get my head out of my arse and see what was right in front of me."
"Someone who loved me. Someone I could love in return and not feel guilty about it."
"Draco." Severus closed his eyes.
"I'm so sorry, Harry."
"Don't you think it's a bit late for that?" Harry snapped. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath.
"Is everything all right here?" came another voice, one Severus would have recognized anywhere despite the years. Both turned to see Draco approaching, holding a red-headed girl in his arms. Jamie, a boy with the trademark Malfoy blond hair and gray eyes and another boy with dark hair and green eyes were right behind him.
"I'm fine, Draco." Harry smiled as Draco leaned over to kiss his cheek. Draco turned his gaze to Severus, barely concealed anger in his eyes.
"Mr Malfoy." Severus nodded.
"Albus, Scorpius, say hello."
"Hello, sir." Both boys chorused.
"Messrs Malfoy." Severus nodded. Draco handed Lily to Harry.
"Madame Malkin is waiting for you." Harry took his daughter and gave Draco a look that said, Whatever you do, don't hex him. I don't want to be bailing you out of jail
. Nodding slightly, Draco watched his family walk away before turning to look at his former professor.
"Severus, you're family so I don't feel the need to warn you. But since it's my family you're messing with, I'm only going to say this once. Stay away from Harry. You hurt him enough already."
And with those words, Draco turned on his heel and walked away.
The pain in Severus's chest deepened as he watched the happy family through the window of the robes shop. Harry laughed at something one of his sons said, his green eyes sparkling in a way Severus had never seen in all the years they were together.Face it, Severus. You've lost him for good.
Severus felt a wetness on his cheeks, and thinking it was raining, he reached up to wipe it away, only to realize it was coming from his eyes. For the first time in a long time, Severus Snape was crying.
He took one final look at the Potter-Malfoys, one shaking hand touching the glass.
"Goodbye, Harry. May you enjoy the happiness I could never give you." he whispered to himself before walking away.Giving up doesn't always mean you are weak; sometimes it means that you are strong enough to let go. ~Author Unknown