|The History of Half a Prince, PG13, Chapter 2
||[May. 19th, 2006|02:48 am]
|||||Howie Day|Trouble In Here||]|
Title: The History of Half a Prince, Chapter 2
Summary: Severus Snape is on the run; he decides, however, that it is time he tells the story of how he got to where he is, running from a crime he was ordered to commit.
Pairings: none, JP/LE
Beta: beshenotperfect, my friend got her to beta this story, as she was going to post it for me. Thanks to this beta.
Disclaimer: Severus Snape and any other recognized characters are property of J.K. Rowling.
The History of Half a Prince
I hadn’t known what it was like, having friends. But for the first time in my life, I had them: two of them, even if for only a short while.
As we sat in the compartment, the train pushing on towards this school that I was to spend a majority of my years at, learning and bonding with others like me, Sirius and James started filling me in on things about the school and other useful things I was quite glad to learn, like jinxes and hexes.
“Now, flick your wrist really fast, point your wand at James, and say ‘Petrificus Totalus’,” Sirius instructed with a laugh. I frowned as I looked at James. He just beamed and nodded. With a small intake of breath, I flicked my wrist, pointing the tip of my wand at the boy, and muttered the words. White light burst out of my wand and hit James squarely in the chest. I gasped as his body went rigid and he was no longer sitting in the chair, but slanted against it. Sirius broke out laughing as I went to him, muttering apology after apology. When he had returned to normal, James just shook his head with a laugh and grinned.
“No, that’s excellent. You have a knack for magic,” he said. “Especially for someone who’s just learned that he’s a wizard.”
The rest of the trip continued in the same manner, either James or Sirius teaching me a hex or jinx and having me try it out on the other. I performed all of them to perfection, they said, and I found myself enjoying the power. When I asked them if they knew any others they just shook their heads and grinned.
“No, and the ones you just learned took me weeks to learn,” James said, Sirius nodding in agreement.
An old lady pushing a trolley full of sweets down the length of the train stopped at our door, which we’d left open. The three of us bought several things and took a break to eat them. Once we finished, James took out his chess set and went about teaching me wizard’s chess. I wasn’t completely horrible, but I lost miserably to the boy. Sirius challenged him and won, grinning as the untidy-haired boy stowed the board just as the train began to slow down.
“We’re close,” Sirius said, leaning forward a bit to look out of the window. “We should probably change into our robes.”
James and I agreed and we slid the door closed, dressing quickly and putting away our Muggle clothes before taking a seat again and opening the door once more. A red-haired girl stopped in the door way to look around at us.
“None of you have seen a small rat, have you?”
I blinked up at the girl and shook my head, unable to speak. She was really pretty and I was rendered speechless. Of all the things my mother had taught me in the short amount of time, she had never once mentioned girls. Of course, I wasn’t the only one who had been enamored by her presence. James looked up from tying his shoe and smiled charmingly.
“No,” he said. “But I’d be happy to help you look for it. What does he look like?”
The girl smiled, her green eyes sparkling. I sighed and looked away, staring out the window. I knew I was feeling sorry for myself, but sometimes you just can’t help feeling envious of others. This was one of those times. Sirius, too. Both of them had a charm and grace that I could only wish for. I saw James leave and heard Sirius snicker.
“Don’t worry about it,” he said. “James will annoy her sooner or later.”
Sure enough, five minutes later James entered the compartment and sighed.
“She called me an annoying, self-centered prat,” he informed us with a grin. “Just watch. I’ll marry her one day.”
Sirius grinned at me before turning his attention to James. “Did you even find out her name, James?”
He nodded. “Lily Evans.”
Our talking was cut short as the train came to a complete stop and left our trunks on the train, as they were to be brought up to the castle and later to our House once we were sorted. I was growing more anxious by the minute.
Following Sirius and James closely as they descended the train, we made our way over to a large man calling attention to first years. Once all of us had gathered, he led us away from everyone else and down toward a large body of water.
At the bank of the lake, many boats bobbed with the current, waiting for the man and the rest of us. I climbed into a boat with Sirius, James, and a smaller boy with sandy brown hair and a demeanor of uneasiness. I smiled at him, and he smiled back for a mere moment before breaking eye contact and looking away. I wasn’t sure if it was a trick of the moon overhead, but it appeared that there were flecks of silver-grey in the boy’s hair. I really didn’t think much on it because at the next moment the boats had all begun to move, all following the large man’s boat. Sirius elbowed me lightly as I caught my eyes drifting toward the boat that the redhead girl - Lily - had gotten into along with a long blonde haired girl and a brunette. Even in the dark, I could tell neither was as pretty as her.
“Like the blonde, Sevvy?”
I looked up to see Sirius grinning and I shook my head.
“No, I was just--” I began, but I never finished my sentence as James drew our attention to the marvelous sight before the cluster of boats.
Before us, like a foot to a hoard of ants, we gazed up at the castle that was to be our future and our home. The turrets seemed to rise higher and higher and I wouldn’t be surprised if they touched the sky. At least, that’s what I thought. Many girls cooed their appreciation of the stark beauty of it against the newly clouded sky. I heard a rumble in the distance as the small boats banked and we all climbed awkwardly out. Standing at the shore like newly-hatched chicks - though far less loud - we continued to stare up at the castle, even as we walked up the lawn and toward the large oak doors that were the entrance to the castle.
Climbing at a run, James and Sirius literally ran into a thoroughly ruffled-looking elderly woman. Her hair was black and pulled back into a bun, but there were streaks of grey running through it. I guessed her to be forty five or forty six. I wouldn’t find out until much later that I’d been right. The woman looked down at the two boys and quirked a black brow before lifting her gaze at all of us and clearing her throat as I came to stand at James’s side.
“Welcome to Hogwarts,” she said, once the group of first years had gathered around on the large stone steps. She never smiled and her voice was stern. I could tell she wasn’t one to be reckoned with, though she wasn’t completely horrible. I listened avidly to her and her dark eyes caught mine on several occasions. They were beady and swift to catch any movement and reminded me of the clever eyes of a cat. “Tonight is a very important moment of your life. You are embarking on a journey through tireless studies and through endless lessons in both magic and in life and I wish that each and every single one of you will do to the best of your ability.” She gave a small sigh that was just audible.
“I will not take kindly to troublemakers and those that want to maraud attention to themselves. You can rest assure that I will punish any who try, even those in my own house. Now, in a few moments, you will enter the Great Hall where you will spend your meals and make your way to the front, but first, are there any questions?”
I saw James elbow Sirius out of the corner of my eye and Sirius raised his hand. The woman nodded to him and he grinned.
“You never stated your name, Professor,” he said.
The woman paused, and eyed him as a cat would a mouse before pouncing. She, however, didn’t pounce. Instead, she pursed her lips for a moment before clearing her throat and addressing the whole group.
“Professor Minerva McGonagall, Deputy Headmistress, Head of Gryffindor House, and teacher of Transfiguration classes.”
Her eyes pinpointed in on Sirius, who was laughing along with James.
“Any other questions?”
“None at all, Professor McGonagall,” he said politely, before choking back a laugh. I could tell that James and Sirius obviously found her name and demeanor quite hilarious. It was a little funny, but definitely not that funny. Those dark eyes traveled over James and then locked with mine for a mere moment before she turned on her heels and began to walk into the castle, all of us following awkwardly.
The large man shuffled ahead to open two large oak doors wide and nodded to McGonagall as she passed, followed by the large group of first years - James, Sirius, and myself right in the center. We formed a line of sorts as we walked between two of the four long tables, eyes lifted to the ceiling, or absence of one.
“It’s bewitched,” came a female voice close to my ear. I looked next to me to find the redheaded girl, Lily Evans, beside me. “To look like the night sky.”
I blinked and looked up once more at the sky and then back at her. “How do you know?”
She smiled. “It’s in Hogwarts, A History,” she replied before falling silent as we reached the other side of the large hall. The woman ushered us into straight lines in front of the large staff table. On the dais was a three-legged stool, an old and tattered hat set upon the seat.
The woman cleared her throat and came to stand near the stool, pulling a large roll of parchment from her robes. Gripping the sides, she let it unroll and began calling out names. Soon Sirius, James, Lily, and even the boy I’d seen earlier whose name was Remus Lupin, I’d found out, were sorted into Gryffindor while several got Slytherin, a handful got Ravenclaw, and a few were sorted into Hufflepuff. Then, it was my turn.
I looked around me at the few people left with me and slowly made my way to the stool picking up the hat and placing it onto my head as I climbed onto the stool.
Hmmm, interesting. You’re mind is quite complex, but I can see one thing you want far more than anything else… revenge. I think I know the house that will suit you the best…
The table closest to the left wall from where I sat still erupted into applause. I had wanted to go to Gryffindor along with my friends but the hat had thought Slytherin was right for me. I felt a sharp tap on my shoulder and looked up into the eyes of the older woman and blinked.
“Make your way to your table if you please,” she said, her voice more sharp than it had been.
“We haven’t got all night.”
I nodded and made my way over to my new table, greeted by handshakes, thrown out names, and pats on the back as I shifted over to sit next to an older boy with silver blonde hair pulled back into a tail at the base of his neck. He turned to look at me, his sharp grey eyes sizing me up and his nose giving a single sniff before his mouth curled into a smile that was more of a smirk, before he nodded. I had obviously passed some kind of test, because others around me began to talk to me and tell me about the school, classes, themselves. They never asked me about myself, but I am glad they didn’t.
My eyes drifted over to the Gryffindor table and I watched James and Sirius strike up conversation with the silver-specked brown haired boy. They must have felt my gaze on them, because they turned around and looked at me for a moment before the last look I would have expected to come from two that I thought had been friends. Both James and Sirius glared, their noses wrinkled in disgust before they turned away at one accord and never looked at me for the rest of the night. Anger surged in me, though now that I look back it only covered my sadness. From that point on, James and Sirius became my enemies, and I had become nothing better to them but an ant on the ground meant to be squashed. I wouldn’t understand until years later why being sorted into Slytherin made the only two friends I ever had, though it had been for merely an hour, to desert me in a house of snakes and spiders.