Snape lay paralyzed on the ground, the smoky glass wall against his back. He looked up pleadingly at the Dark Lord, his black eyes searching the emotionless face that had just struck him down. The face that he had served for over ten years. The face that had bid him to block out all his hopes and fears and memories, his memories.
" Snape begged, raising a hand in utter asking. Voldemort drew his head back, and he seemed to scoff at him.
can you not see? Your life in return for all of humanity? It is an incredibly small price to pay." Voldemort said in a voice that barely rose above a whisper, but still echoed eerily through the halls.
That very same voice traveled around the corner of that glass wall that Snape was leaning against and rung in the ears of our hero. Harry grabbed the side of his head.
"Gah," he groaned. Hermione leapt across Ron and clapped a hand over Harry's mouth. Harry's eye met Hermione's, and after seeing the fear register in her face, he nodded slowly, and she removed her hand. Ron watched Snape's clear silhouette through the smoked glass, and he turned to Harry.
"Harry, he wouldn' kill 'im, would he?" Ron whispered, careful to keep his skin from contacting with the glass. Harry paused for a moment.
"I don't know." He whispered back after a moment. Inside his head was a jumble of thoughts, what if Voldemort did kill Snape? He closed his eyes, and he focused on his aching head.
Snape tried very hard not to panic. He kept his line of vision on the wand in Voldemort's hand, it was trembling slightly. He pondered this, was the Dark Lord afraid to kill him?
"Severus, you must understand," Voldemort continued, pacing a few steps to the left, "I did not wish for this to happen."
"Then why do you do it?" Snape spat.
I want to be the one with all the power. I want to live forever. I want to be able to kill a child and not be chased down by their parents. I want to be able to be feared EVERYWHERE. No matter the costs." He replied, an amused face coming over him. "I want to murder every last soul at Hogwarts and be able to walk away without their ghostly cries following me."
Snape shifted uncomfortably as he heard a hiss come from behind Voldemort. He saw a glint of red, and he could practically feel the movement of scales.
"Cold blood!" He chided forcefully to the Dark Lord. Voldemort shot a look of pure ice at Snape, and the teacher looked away quickly, ashamed. Voldemort seemed to chuckle.
"This is true," he mused. "Good thing I do not pity you."
Voldemort raised his wand and shot another bolt of electricity at Severus, and a cry of pain left the teacher's lips. The Dark Lord closed his eyes and let hiss head fall back as the power flowed from his fingertips and into the wand. It felt gloriously sinister. Another pained cry came from Snape. Then, from behind the glass, Harry said in a too-loud voice, "Snape!"
Snape rolled his eyes to the side, and he saw Harry's face peeking over the edge of the glass. He had an urgent look in his eyes, and he seemed to be trying to reach out a hand. Snape shook his head vigorously. Harry retreated after a moment's hesitation. Snape was relived that the Dark Lord hadn't heard or seen Harry.
After Snape had stopped squirming from the magic, Voldemort knelt down and he stared directly into Snape's eyes.
"Severus," He said, his face the picture of seriousness. The tone of his voice alarmed Snape to the very extent of his mind. "Severus
" Voldemort repeated, "Where is Harry Potter?"
Harry froze. His eyes slid over to Ron and Hermione, and their frightened faces told him that they were thinking the same thing that he was thinking.
Snape was going to give them away.
He was going to give them away to save his own life.
"Harry, we need to leave!" Hermione whispered urgently. Harry paused. Then, he shook his head vigorously. He couldn't leave.
This was the final choice of loyalty.
Would Snape save his life?
A number of things were running through Snape's mind at that moment. If he did turn in Harry, then he just might walk away alive. But if he didn't, he wouldn't live to see another day. But
Harry had been chosen to kill Voldemort. So why would it be so easy to kill him? All he had to do was tell the Dark Lord where the boy was, which, coincidentally, happened to be right behind them.
Severus took a deep breath, and he looked directly into Voldemort's eyes. Harry's heart pounded, and he reached for his wand. Ron did the same, and Hermione grabbed Ron's hand.
"I do not know, my lord
" Snape uttered, dropping his head.
Harry was rooted to the spot. What had just happened? Snape, Severus Snape, the one teacher in Hogwarts that couldn't stand Harry, had just saved his life.
"Well then," he said, tilting his head up. "It appears that I have no further use for you. Nagini!"
A terrible sound came from behind Voldemort's robes, and Snape swallowed hard.
In a shift of scales, Nagini leapt out from the black cloth, and he struck at Snape, fangs glistening.
From behind the glass, Harry, Ron, and Hermione experienced one of the most horrible and scarring deaths they had ever seen.
Snape, who had been lying up against the glass, lurched as the snake dug its powerful fangs into his neck. Blood splattered against the glass, and Nagini hissed menacingly. Then, he struck again. More blood hit the wall.
Behind the glass wall, Harry watched the blood splatter, wide-eyed. Ron looked like he was going to faint, and Hermione was covering her ears and had clamped her eyes shut. Tears were rolling down her cheeks, and she was trembling. Harry stopped breathing at the sight of the blood. No. This couldn't happen.
Nagini struck one last time, and blood ran in rivers down the smoky glass. Voldemort's high laugh rang out, and it echoed eerily through the halls. It made Harry shiver, and he wanted to take out all his anger on the brute, right then and there.
"Nagini, return to me, my pet." Voldemort bade the snake. The snake slipped silently underneath Voldemort's robes again, and Voldemort gave one last glance at Snape.
"Pity," he scoffed. Then, with a whirl of blackness, Voldemort shot into the air and away from that place, his laughter haunting the revered halls.
Harry sprinted around the corner of the wall and he knelt beside his fallen teacher. Ron and Hermione followed, and when Hermione saw Snape, she brought her hands to her mouth and she gasped. Tears glistened in her eyes and Ron wrapped his arms protectively around her waist. Harry gently shook Snape.
Professor, hold on, please
" Harry begged Snape.
Tears leaked from Snape's eyes and they mixed with the lake of blood that surrounded him. On his neck and chest, the bites of Nagini shone red in the moonlight. Snape tried to speak, but he only choked and coughed up blood. Harry felt tears rolling down his own face now, and he clenched his teeth together tightly. Snape was trembling terribly, and he couldn't breathe. In desperation, he looked up to Harry.
" He gasped out. Harry leant closer.
"I'm here, Snape." He replied earnestly.
" Snape uttered, and he coughed again. Harry nodded, and he turned quickly to Hermione.
"I need a bottle, a flask! Now!" He ordered her. Hermione, stricken, reached into her bag and pulled out a tiny potion bottle. She handed it to Harry, and Harry turned back to Snape. Hands shaking, he brought the flask to Snape's eye and he collected a few precious tears that fell down the professor's cheeks. When he had enough, he closed the flask, and he stuck it in his pocket. He jumped as Snape grabbed his hand, and he was surprised to find his own fingers clasping around it. The blood poured from Snape's wounds faster, and Snape had now turned a pale shade of white.
Snape lifted his eyes up to Harry's, and he spoke.
You have you m-mother's eyes
" He choked. Hermione, who had been trying not to show her emotion, now cried out, and she buried her head into Ron's shoulder. Tears trickled down Ron's cheeks as well, and he was looking down at the dying Professor with all the pity in the world.
Snape tightened his grip on Harry's hand, and he slowly released it. In a jolt, he lifted his head to the moon and gave one last, long scream.
His head fell back.
Tears were pouring down Harry's face now, and he wanted to die.
Snape hadn't deserved to die. He was loyal and wise and he has always looked out for Harry, even when it seemed like he hated him. Harry looked down at Snape's limp, white hand, and he sobbed.
After a long moment, Harry's sobs quieted, and wiped his eyes on the back of his palm.
" Ron said tearfully, still holding the crying Hermione. "We betta' be off. Now that
has been here, it's not safe anymore."
Harry swallowed hard.
" He replied. He stood, and he took a shaky breath. He looked down at the dead professor, and he sighed. Hermione walked over to Harry, and she put an arm around his shoulders. Ron did the same. Harry gave one last glance at Snape. Then, he turned away.
The three friends all left the room together, arms linked and heads bowed, never to return.
Silence filled Hogwarts. Darkness crept in and destroyed every ray of hope and replaced it with despair.
The room where Snape lay was now flooded with blood.
Every drop of liquid that had been in the professor's body now had been spilled onto the cold, unforgiving ground.
Suddenly and without any warning,
The corridors and halls of Hogwarts were blanketed in a soft, white light.
This light shifted for a moment. It seemed to traveling through the halls, one force that could not be stopped. It moved gracefully and softly, ever so slightly molding into a shape as it floated.
By the time it reached the room where Snape lay, it had transformed into something that could only be described as beauty.
A pure figure with light reflecting off of her like the pale, shining moon. A delicate white rose in a sea of darkness.
And it could only be named as Lily.
She moved silently over to Snape, and she knelt down beside him. Taking his bloodied head in her arms, she gently touched his face.
Severus, wake up." She whispered.
Snape stirred, and his eyelids fluttered. He finally realized who was addressing him.
?" He asked in a faint whisper. Lily nodded, and she smiled sadly.
"Yes Snape, it's me." She said.
" Snape whispered, his eyes filling with tears.
"Oh Severus, its okay! Thank you for protecting my son!" Lily exclaimed softly, wrapping her arms around the man in a warm hug. Tears clung in her eyes now. "You have done me the biggest kindness by ensuring Harry's safety
I was so worried that he would not live beyond that hour."
Snape sighed from within Lily's arms, and he tried not to think about the pain he was still experiencing. Lily drew back, and she looked at the man's wounds.
"Severus, you are very hurt, aren't you?" She whimpered, gingerly touching one of the marks on his chest. Snape tried to respond, but he could not speak anymore. He simply did not have the strength. Lily smiled a brave smile, and she took his hands.
"Don't worry, Snape. I've come to take you home." She said softly. The light that shone around her began to grow brighter as she held tighter to his hands. Then, she slowly began to stand, and Snape was surprised to find himself rising with her. Soon, they were both standing there together. Snape was amazed at the sudden peace that filled him. He felt no more pain, and he felt stronger than he ever had before. Looking down at himself, he drew back slightly. He had turned younger somehow, the exact age he had been on that fateful night so many years ago. He looked at Lily, and he smiled.
"How can this be...?" He asked her.
Lily made a motion with her head, and Snape looked down to where she was nodding.
There on the floor behind him lay himself. Or, it was his body at least.
Snape now looked at his hands and arms, and he noticed that he was now glowing with the same white light that Lily was. He had no wounds, and he was wearing a clean, white robe of the softest fabric. It matched the white dress that Lily was wearing, and she matched his smile as well. Snape looked down sadly at his body again, and he felt a deep pang of loss.
"Severus, don't look at what was," Lily said, causing Snape to look away from what was left of his poor body. "Look at what you are now."
"Lily," Snape said after a moment of silence. "Please, take me home."
Lily smiled sweetly, and she stood up on her tiptoes.
She kissed Snape lightly, her arms circling around his neck. Snape, surprised, felt the heat rise to his face almost instantly. Then, he relaxed, and he hugged Lily close to him.
The two slowly grew transparent, and they disappeared in the white light.
The gentle, shimmering light faded, and darkness filled the halls once more.
And that was the beginning of the end for Professor Severus Snape.