GETTING AWAY WITH MURDER
The idea for this story stemmed from a comment made on the forum
boards by Versipelles (Tann) at The Werewolf Registry. We therefore send our utmost appreciation to
Tann for his inspiration.
We owe a *huge* debt of gratitude to our betas, who were ready to AK
us after reading the first draft of this story due to all the difficulties with
the tenses of the verbs. Hopefully, we
have got that all worked out now.
This story contains flashbacks.
All references to “Snape” take place in the present time. All references to “Severus” occur at some
point in the past. Although we find it
difficult to think of Snape as “Severus,” we have referred to him that way in
an effort to make this story easier to follow.
The dungeons of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry were
always dark and frigid. It was the way the Potions master liked it, especially
when he was brewing a particularly difficult potion or hosting a group of
Gryffindors in detention. Ironically, it was Headmaster Albus Dumbledore who
had requested that he brew this particular potion and bring it with him to the
next meeting of the Order of the Phoenix.
One of the things that gave Severus Snape the most satisfaction when
brewing a potion was the careful regulation of the flames beneath his cauldron
to derive the perfect potion. His
favourite moments in making any potion were those involving the oft overlooked
embers under the cauldron which were able to provide the perfect subtle twist
sometimes needed. Embers could be quite
deceiving: although their surfaces appear as though all of the heat and fire
has been extinguished, one needs to look closer. Beneath that white ash encrusted surface, the flame within still
burns brightly, waiting. Blow a puff of
air on that ember and watch as it sparks alive with a flame that burns more
intensely and dangerously than ever before.
But the embers beneath the cauldron containing the ingredients of
this potion must not be enhanced yet.
They must be allowed to smoulder a little while longer before yielding
to the flames. This potion had been
brewing too long already to ruin its subtlety at this late stage.
As Snape carefully measured and added the ingredients, his thoughts
turned to the individual who would be taking this potion. The newly added dark
ingredients began to blend together in the cauldron. The steam rose from the
vile liquid, curdling Snape’s nose even as the rising fumes made his eyes
involuntarily tear up.
As the billows of smoke thickened around him, Snape did not notice
how white his knuckles were turning from grasping the long ladle so firmly. As
he stared down into the murky depths of the cauldron, deep in thought, Snape
stirred the mixture, gazing fixedly at his reflection glimmering eerily on the
dark, simmering surface.
The smooth, constant motion of his arm, the sound as the ladle
stirred the thick liquid, the odour, the crackling of the glowing embers ...
all were mesmerising. Soon, the thoughts swirling around in his head became
more focused. As they did so, a clear image, like that in a Pensieve, formed on
the surface of the now mud-like substance in the cauldron before him. He forced
himself to concentrate on the thin figure which was growing clearer and clearer
before his eyes. Squinting to see the shape better, he gasped audibly as he
recognised whom it was.
It was Snape himself - albeit a much younger version, in the very
dungeon he now occupied. Judging by his appearance, he must have been in his
fifth year at Hogwarts. The teenage
Severus appeared to be performing the very same rhythmic motion as the adult
Snape: stirring a potion with slow, deliberate strokes. Staring deeper into the
depths, Snape saw that his fifteen year-old self was visibly disturbed, his
smooth, flawless movements occasionally punctured by a harsh jolt. He noted the
rage, hot as coals in a fire, pulsing through the student. He could see the
old, familiar hatred that had boiled deep within him almost since the beginning
of his attendance at Hogwarts rise to the surface in his younger self. It was a
flame that simply would not die...
Black, Potter, Pettigrew, and Lupin. They were the cause of the
blind, white-hot anger in the younger Severus.. Black had thought himself so
clever, taking his intelligence and turning it into Severus’ near demise. Of
course, Severus had noticed Lupin's monthly "trips home" back then,
but had not been deceived by the stories that were dutifully spread.
Severus had noticed something very unusual about Lupin’s
“trips" - they had always taken place about once a month. Something had
been wrong, indeed, something that had been covered up. It had been his utmost
duty to discover just where Lupin disappeared to every month. If the
administration were going to allow this complicity to continue, then he, Severus
Snape, had vowed that he would not rest until the secret was his and had been
revealed to the world.
He had started following the Gryffindors around, despite their
having been aware of his presence. By observing them, Snape had learnt their
habits, which he had hoped would one day enable him to solve Lupin’s mystery
and use that information to his advantage.
Months had passed. In
typical Gryffindor fashion, the foursome had clung together, protecting the
weaker Lupin from having his secret discovered. It did not matter. With dogged
perseverance, Severus had eventually discovered that Lupin vanished into the
Whomping Willow every month. Somehow, the Gryffindor had found a way to get
underneath the deadly tree for some yet unknown purpose.
However, Lupin’s reason for playing a go-round of hide-and-seek with
the tree did not stay a well-kept secret for
long. His deadly secret was soon discovered by Severus.
One day when Severus had clandestinely followed at Lupin’s heels for
nearly a month, Severus had been accosted by Black, who snapped at him for
doing so. How typical of Black to lose his nasty temper when Severus had dared
to accuse that precious little Gryffindor, Lupin, of having some dark reason
for disappearing under the Whomping Willow at monthly intervals. Ignoring the consequences and obvious
dangers, that imbecilic, conceited Black had actually told Severus how to get
under the Whomping Willow – and actually dared
him to do so that night. Of course,
Black had known full well that Severus would.
Even worse, Black had known exactly what would be found there. How could
he not? He had known it would cost Severus his very life.
It did ... almost.
That vicious Black, along with the rest of his lot, had
intentionally ignored the obvious dangers and had set Severus up to confront
that freak, Lupin, in his transformed state.
A murderous, blood-thirsty, filthy werewolf. They had all planned the
entire thing. Only Potter’s loss of his nerve and desire to play hero at the
last minute had saved Severus from being killed - or worse - becoming a
And what had his illustrious headmaster, Dumbledore done about it?
Was that grotesque werewolf destroyed
like it should have been? No. Were the four
Gryffindors brought up before the Ministry for attempted murder? No. Were his
would-be murderers at least expelled for their actions? No.
No. So there had been Severus, the victim of an insidious murder
attempt by Black, Potter, Lupin, and Pettigrew, stirring a potion rather than following through with his original plan from
the moment he had regained his wits after Potter had saved him. Despite almost
being brutally murdered, Severus had not been allowed to go to the authorities
to reveal Lupin to the world for the dangerous
beast he truly was.
Instead, Severus had been ordered to keep their dangerous little
secret; he had been ordered to help protect that vicious monster so it could
receive the education that only a human wizard should receive. If Black
or any of the other Gryffindors had received the slightest punishment,
Dumbledore had not bothered to tell Severus, the victim. He had not received an
apology from them. Looking back at the scene now, Snape doubted if the Ministry
of Magic had even known there had been a dangerous werewolf running around
Hogwarts impersonating a normal student. It had been enough to make Severus
sick. Even now, looking back after all these years, the knot in his stomach
continued to build, regardless of how hard he tried to calm himself.
Dumbledore. Damn him! If it hadn't been for his incomprehensible
favouritism, things would have turned out differently. But that was fine -
since Dumbledore had not been willing to punish Black and his cronies as they
had deserved, Severus could wait until they ruined themselves. Oh, he had known
they would destroy themselves ultimately, that had been certain. The arrogance,
blind faith, and trust they had held in each other, on which the Gryffindors
had prided themselves, would be their downfall. And Severus had planned to make
sure he would be there to watch it all happen. Oh, yes. To every, single, last
one of them.
Those conceited Gryffindors had underestimated
the patience and intelligence of Severus Snape. Slytherins then, as now, were
not all cunning and deviousness. He had waited quietly, not saying a word, and
watchedg. Of course, when the opportunity presented itself to assist them in
their ultimate demise, well ... a Slytherin always took advantage of a good
The vision in the cauldron blurred before the present-day Snape’s
eyes. Snape took that opportunity to
increase the flame under his cauldron slightly and to add a pinch of a grey
powder to the mixture. That done, he went back to the constant stirring of the
thickening liquid, once again looking at its surface. After a couple of minutes, the surface became clear once more.
Snape smiled with recognition as he saw a seventeen-year-old Severus watching
gleefully as that pale, fat, putrid-faced Pettigrew left him and ran down the
hall leading out of the dungeons. It had been one of Severus’ finest moments.
For months, this particular member of Potter’s little crowd of
idiotic Gryffindors had not seemed happy to be following in Potter’s and
Black’s wake. Finally, at least one of them had realised that the sun did not
rise and set with Black and Potter. Pettigrew had been more intelligent than
any of them had thought, including Snape.
It had become clear that Pettigrew had been the sort the Dark Lord had
Severus’ revenge had been about to begin.
The adult Snape looked back at the end of his seventh year as the
time he had begun to make comments to Pettigrew about how he was too smart to
let Potter and Black treat him as if he were inferior. Stolen moments in the halls, Herbology, the
library... all had been perfect places
to slip little comments to Pettigrew when Potter, Black, and Lupin had not been
around. Severus had told Pettigrew that
they would all soon be leaving Hogwarts and that it was likely that Potter and
Black would look down on him even more once they began their career training.
Pettigrew had been all too easily convinced that he would have to start looking
elsewhere to get the recognition and advancement he thought he deserved. It had
been only a matter of time until Pettigrew came to Severus.
Predictably, Pettigrew had come to Severus a month after they had
left Hogwarts, practically begging in his annoying manner for help. Severus
himself had carefully plotted the course of the conversation, and soon had
convinced Pettigrew that the Dark Lord was taking over, and that it would be in
his best interests to be on the correct side when things fell into place. The
pathetic mass of jelly had straight away set about the task of becoming a Death
Eater and endearing himself to the Dark Lord.
Severus had been there, delighted witness as the Gryffindors began
to crumble. How he had looked forward to their ultimate annihilation.
But before Snape had time to savour that memory, the image of
Pettigrew had vanished from the potion’s surface. The liquid swirled and changed once again as Snape continued to
stare into it.
Snape watched as another scene unfolded exactly as he had lived
through it the first time. Soon, he was
looking at an image of himself standing at a corner in Diagon Alley as some
unknown old witch shook Severus’ shoulders gleefully and told him that
You-Know-Who had been destroyed. He watched as the old witch sobered up enough
from her jubilation to tell his younger self that Potter and his wife had also
been killed. Interesting.
It had been staggering news at the time. Months earlier, Severus had managed to bite back his personal
hatred of Potter in an effort to save his damned life. Despite Severus’ warnings to Dumbledore of
the Dark Lord’s intentions toward Potter,
Potter had still managed to bungle things. Damn him! Potter hadn’t even let Severus pay back that wizard’s
debt before getting himself blown up.
Not that Severus minded Potter’s death, far from it. It was merely
Potter’s timing that was poor.
Of course, Severus had pasted an appropriate look on his face for
the benefit of the old witch still holding him around his shoulders at the
time, but a feeling of accomplishment, of vengeance, had filled his soul. He
had left the old witch as soon as possible.
As he did so, a smile had crept over his
face, a smile that had kept him warm on what was
then a brief, pleasant walk to the Leaky Cauldron.
One down. Unfortunately, Potter had somehow reproduced before his
death; Severus had shuddered at the thought. The older Snape recalled how he
had sworn that one day, he would have to deal with his enemy’s offspring. But
not today. Today, all attention had been focused on Member Number Two.
For months after Severus’ warning, Dumbledore had suspected that
there had been a traitor helping the Dark Lord in his pursuit of Potter. If he
had been able to discover and identify whom the traitor was, the Ministry of
Magic would do him the favour of disposing of another member of Potter’s lot.
So who had done it? Who had betrayed Saint Potter? It had to have been either
Black or Lupin; they weren't as thick as Pettigrew. Although Pettigrew had
proven himself more intelligent than Severus had thought, he lacked the
necessary intelligence and strength of character required to spy on and
ultimately to destroy the wizard he had once idolised.
Could the traitor have been the werewolf? Possibly. Rumours had
circulated to that effect for some time after Severus had renounced the Dark
Lord and had started to work for Dumbledore. Lupin certainly was a vile dark
creature that had proven himself capable of murder at a young age. He
definitely had been a possibility, but somehow, that didn’t seem right to
Severus. After all, the monster had needed every friend he could get.
Black...Black had been the Potter's Secret-Keeper. Dumbledore
himself had said as much. Black, who had reeked Gryffindor loyalty so much that
it had dripped from his very pores. Now he had
been branded the traitor. Severus’ joy had been hard to contain, especially
once he had read The Daily Prophet. It
had given a detailed account of how Black had
blown up that pathetic Pettigrew, whom the newspaper had called a hero.
Not only had Black obliterated Pettigrew, but he had also managed to
blow up a street full of Muggles. The murderous Black had done Severus the
favour of destroying Pettigrew. Not that Pettigrew had caused Severus to be as
furious as the rest of their lot, but he still had been one of them and had
helped plan that murder attempt on Severus back in Hogwarts. Now he had paid
for it with his own life. How appropriate.
The results had been far better than could possibly have been
anticipated. The Daily Prophet had shown a large picture of a wild-eyed
Black on its cover as he had been led away to Azkaban for the rest of his
miserable life. How fitting. His arrogance and family’s stature had not saved
him in the end. In fact, for once the Ministry hadn’t botched things up and
hadn't even give Black a trial. That’s how open and shut the case against him
had been. At last, everyone knew what Severus had known for years - that Black
was a dangerous, vicious wizard who should be locked up in Azkaban with all the
At last, some justice. Everything had caught up with Black after
all, and now Black had been punished for his crimes.
That left Lupin. The werewolf was all alone and trying to make sense
out of the sudden destruction of his three closest friends, Severus had
thought. Lupin would be all alone for the rest of his miserable existence.
This certainly had been a fortuitous turn of events. And Severus had
been there to enjoy it all. It was almost perfect. Almost.
This memory had been so strong that it caused Snape to grasp the
ladle even firmer in his hand in his anticipation. His hand was clenched so tightly, in fact, that it slipped off of
the ladle, startling him momentarily.
With quick reflexes, he looked down at the cauldron to see that its
contents had become cloudy once again.
Angry with himself for letting the ladle slip and ending such a fine
memory, Snape snapped his fingers at the glowing embers and flames under his
cauldron, which immediately obeyed his command and intensified. The room was still silent, except for the
hissing of the flame and the gentle bubbling of the potion. Grasping the ladle
firmly in his hand, he recommenced his agitation of the cauldron’s contents.
The brewing potion finally settled on a vision of Severus a few
years ago. The anger burned brighter inside Snape as he saw what memory this
was. This was the moment when Severus had learnt that Black had somehow escaped
from Azkaban. To make things worse, Black supposedly had been headed toward
Hogwarts, although the reason for his going to Hogwarts had not been so bad.
Potter’s brat of a son was as arrogant as his father ever had been. He even had
his own fan club. Yet, despite loathing the attention-seeking brat, it had
still been Severus’ duty to protect him rather than treat him the way he and
his family deserved. It had been and still was the staff’s duty to protect all
of the students.
But Severus’ main focus had been on Black, not on Potter’s son. So
what had Dumbledore done to protect Hogwarts from Black? Oh, yes, he had
finally agreed to let Dementors guard the castle when enough pressure had been
put on him - he had had no choice. But that fool had actually hired the
werewolf to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts! Imagine - a dark creature
teaching a class on how to defend against himself! Snape seethed at the
memory. What had Dumbledore been thinking?
Clearly, Dumbledore could not have been in his right mind; he was normally
quite an intelligent wizard. But no
matter how much Severus had protested, Dumbledore had refused to see reason.
Severus had been proven right in the end, of course. Lupin had
allowed Black to enter Hogwarts on more than one occasion, each time resulting
in brutal attacks: once on a valued portrait and once on Harry Potter’s minion,
Had Dumbledore finally learnt his lesson? Or course not. That fool
had still allowed the werewolf to remain at his post. Severus had done his best
to help the students understand that they were in danger because a foul Dark
creature had been teaching them, but unfortunately, none of them had had the
modicum of intelligence needed to realise what had been right before their
eyes. None of them had looked at their lunar charts or even questioned Lupin’s
monthly absences. Idiots. All of them.
What had happened at the end of the year had not been surprising.
One night, while taking Lupin the wolfsbane potion that Severus had been forced
to brew for him, Severus had spotted Potter’s map on Lupin’s desk. One glance
at it had revealed its unique ability to show where everyone had been in the
castle as well as on the school’s grounds. Lupin’s name had been scrolled on
the map in tiny black letters located in the representation of the tunnel under
the Whomping Willow. According to the
map, the werewolf had been headed toward the Shrieking Shack. Suddenly, Lupin’s
name had vanished.
Severus had realised at once what had happened. Lupin had been
helping his old friend, Black, just as he had suspected all year. They had been
down there plotting their next move, he had been certain. Severus had known he
needed to follow them ... follow them and catch them in the act. He had
revelled in the vision of the faces of the Minister for Magic ... and
Dumbledore... when they saw whom he had captured.
Severus had bolted quickly out of the castle and down toward the
Whomping Willow, the warm wind blowing his hair in front of his eyes. The fates
had smiled upon him as he had made his way to the tunnel. There, lying almost
invisible, its fluid folds melting into the gathering darkness, had been
Potter’s invisibility cloak. Although Severus had wondered
what Potter’s cloak had been doing there, he couldn’t help having another
thought, one that had made him smile as he picked up the cloak. How ironic that
Black’s once having taught him how to get into the Whomping Willow would now be
used to destroy both Black and Lupin instead.
The tunnel under the tree had been as long and dark as Severus had
remembered it. Sweat had broken out on his face as he raced through the
claustrophobic, filthy tunnel all too familiar to him from his own days as a
student. Eventually, he had come out into a dusty old building that could only
have been the Shrieking Shack. Although he had come close, he’d never been
inside Britain’s most haunted building before; he had taken a moment to quietly
look around him, even as he had strained his ears listening for any hint of
where Black and Lupin were. Voices had been coming from upstairs. As quietly as
possible, he had stolen up the dusty stairs and into the room. Those fools had
not even had enough intelligence to realise that the sound they had heard was
someone under an invisibility cloak. And these were supposed to be some of
Gryffindor’s brightest. The idea had been ludicrous.
Not only had Black and Lupin been present, but Potter, Weasley, and
Granger had been in the room as well. What morons, following a werewolf and an
escaped convicted murderer around. Black and Lupin had been going on and on with the werewolf’s tragic tale and
how Black, Potter, and Pettigrew had not only remained friends with him, but
had become Animagi to help the creature. As if that had not been revolting
enough to have been forced to hear, Severus’ would-be murderers had tried to convince the students that the werewolf was
not really a monster, and that Black was innocent. It was ludicrous.
What was even more ridiculous was that Potter and his gang had been
falling for Black’s and Lupin’s pathetic pack of lies. Potter had seemed to inherit his father’s blindness when it came
to Black and Lupin. Severus had stood there
under the cloak listening silently, making certain that Black and Lupin didn’t
harm the students, even those students. It must have come as quite a
shock to Black to learn that Severus was teaching at Hogwarts. Severus had
taken a certain amount of pleasure in that. It had been the perfect moment for
him to bring this charade to an end.
The first thing Severus had done was to tie the werewolf up for
everyone’s safety. Most satisfying. Next, he had held
Black at wandpoint. The lying cur had kept up
his charade and had tried to blame Weasley’s
rat. Azkaban must really have addled his brain if he had thought such a
juvenile attempt would work on Severus. Black could pretend he was not the
traitor all he wanted; Severus would have none of it.
The students, particularly Potter and Granger, had actually stood there trying to convince Severus that
Black and Lupin had been telling the truth. Clearly, Black and Lupin had put
them under a spell. They had no idea how lucky they were that Severus had been
there to save them and capture Black and the despicable werewolf.
Unfortunately, as Severus had been about to lead them all out of the Shrieking
Shack and call the Dementors to come collect Black and Lupin, the world had suddenly gone black.
When Severus had awoken, he had been on the grounds of the castle. A
quick glance around had shown him that Lupin had disappeared, although the
three students had still been there, all unconscious, ... and there had been
Black ... out cold right beside Potter. Severus had levitated
all of them to the castle and to the infirmary, depositing the students in the
fairly capable hands of Madame Pomfrey as he "escorted" Black
immediately into a separate room to be held until the Ministry officials could
Dumbledore had questioned Black
himself while they had awaited the Minister for Magic. Incredibly, Dumbledore
had seemed to believe Black’s story, although he
had not admitted as much. Black’s
ludicrous pack of lies had even included an
absurd attempt to claim that the real traitor had been Pettigrew, whom he had
claimed was not only still alive, but masquerading as Weasley’s rat. Black’s
creations had turned wilder and more absurd by the minute - Severus had been
preparing to enjoy watching the Dementor administer to Black the Kiss he so
When Fudge had finally arrived, he had given
Severus the proper credit that had been due him for capturing Black.
Snape recalled that at the time, he had thought that soon, all of the wizarding
world would know about how Severus Snape, Potions master at Hogwarts School of
Witchcraft and Wizardry, had caught the infamous criminal, Sirius Black.
But then, the unthinkable, the impossible, had happened. Once more,
Black had managed to escape. Not only that, but Dumbledore had seemed pleased
about it. Once again, Black had gotten the better of Severus and had escaped
punishment, a punishment that he had more than deserved.
The surface of the potion changed again, this time to the hospital
wing at Hogwarts, where Dumbledore had forced
Severus to grudgingly shake hands with Black after the Third Task of the
Triwizard Tournament. Even after all these years in Azkaban, Black had still
been filled with conceit about his own self-importance. Even worse, Dumbledore
had trusted both Black and Lupin, even after
Black had told him that he was an Animagus, a large black dog, to be exact. So
Black had been an Animagus after all. How appropriate for Black to have
resembled a filthy Grim.
Not only had Dumbledore believed Black’s story of his innocence, but
he had felt it necessary to start up the old Order of the Phoenix again and had
sent Black to gather everyone together and then to stay with Lupin. Meantime,
Severus had been given the far more difficult, and potentially deadly task of
facing the Dark Lord again, after Harry Potter had escaped... again. Facing the
Dark Lord had never been a pleasant experience, let alone when he had been
angry. It had been very dangerous to spy on him for the Order; Severus had
known that had he ever been discovered, death would have been the best of his
The image in the cauldron became unclear once more. Snape took this opportunity to check the
heat beneath the brew; the embers beneath the flames were burning hotly with
their fire within. Everything was going perfectly. When the pool of liquid revealed a new vision, it was of Black
and Severus glaring at each other in the dismal kitchen of the headquarters for
the Order of the Phoenix. This had been one of the things Severus had hated
most about the Order - having to talk with Black and even to work beside him,
as if the two could have ever really been on the same side of anything. Black
had still let his vile temper get the best of him whenever Severus had forced
him to see the truth about what a coward he really had been, hiding while
everyone else had risked their lives. The foolish ex-Gryffindor had been so
predictable, so easy to goad, and most of all, so amusing to watch when he had
All Severus had had to do was to mention the truth about how useless
Black was, doing nothing but relaxing at Number Twelve Grimmauld Place. Asking
him how the cleaning was going had especially
set him off. Even better had been when Severus would mention Black's wretched
godson, Potter. Black had really lost control
when he had mentioned the Occlumency lessons Severus had been forced to give
the Potter brat. Typical Gryffindor, thinking he knew better, thinking that
Severus had nothing to teach the brat and would "disturb" the boy’s
precious mind. How dare he! What Black had really feared was that Severus would
teach Potter what his precious father and godfather had really been like. Black
had had good reason to be afraid.
Another vision. This one of Potter in Umbridge’s office,
surreptitiously yelling back at Severus that Black had been in danger at the
Department of Mysteries. With Dumbledore no longer in charge and his
second-in-command injured and in hospital, the only member of the Order around
to protect Precious Potter had been Severus. This time, that had meant that he would have to protect the last person
in this world he wanted to help, Black. Once again, it had fallen to him.
The vision followed Severus as he Apparated to Headquarters. He had
arrived there only to find that, unfortunately, Black had not only still been
there, but had been quite safe. In order to protect the pathetic brat, Severus
had had no choice but to alert Black of Potter’s outburst in Umbridge’s office.
When he had alerted Black, Severus had been certain to instruct Black that he,
Severus, would alert the rest of the Order and Dumbledore while Black did what
he was best at, nothing, and remained at headquarters to tell other members of
the Order what was happening. He had known Black wouldn’t dream of remaining
still when he had an opportunity to play the
This had suited Severus just fine. The deep-seeded hatred, which had
been festering since he had been eleven years old, had come bubbling to the
surface. The adult Snape recalled how at the time he had imagined how he would
sit back and watch Black destroy himself, playing the brave Gryffindor hero, as
usual. About the only good thing that damn Gryffindor loyalty complex had been
good for - destroying Severus’ enemies. Once out of his hiding place at
Headquarters, Black had exposed himself as an easier target for the Dark Lord,
his Death Eaters, and the Ministry of Magic. There had been no doubt that
Precious Potter would have been fine, but Black... Severus had sworn to himself
that he would not actually kill him, but nor would he help to save him. So
perfect, so Slytherin. Finally, revenge.
Lo and behold, Black's own arrogance had been his undoing. Black at
last had died, and at the hand of his own family, no less.
One more down.
That had left only the werewolf.
The cauldron stirred once again and more visions appeared on its
glossy surface to Snape. The next one was a surprise when it had happened.
Severus had been at Headquarters with the rest of the members of the Order
listening to Dumbledore’s new plans. Black and Lupin had not been lying after
all; Pettigrew had still been alive and apparently had been able to transform
into a rat. It had not mattered. It had only been a matter of time for
Pettigrew - he had had a death sentence over his head if the Order had ever
caught him. If he’d been “lucky,” it would have been a life of servitude for
the Dark Lord, which actually would have been worse than death.
As it turned out, real luck had been with Pettigrew. Kingsley had
found him and had attempted to bring him to the Order for justice. However,
Pettigrew, coward that he had been, had killed himself.
Severus had known that Potter’s pathetic gang would eventually all
hang themselves. His revenge had been
sweet because he hadn’t needed to do anything; he had sat back and watched each
one of them be destroyed by their own doing... except the werewolf.
The steam rose from the potion and curdled the hairs in Snape's nose
as he inhaled it. The vision in the potion disappeared and he saw his own
reflection once more. He breathed deeply before carefully extinguishing the
flame under the cauldron, watching as the glowing red-orange core of the embers
cooled and turned cold, the energy having gone out of them. Satisfied, he reached for a heavy goblet and
filled it with the vile liquid in the cauldron.
Raising his wand to the potion, Snape whispered an incantation to
keep the contents in the goblet safely confined. He then wiped the stem,
removing any drops of the precious liquid.
Holding the goblet up before him, his thoughts drifted back to the
four Gryffindors, his bitter enemies. One by one, they had each met their own
fate. All but one.
Dumbledore's own pet werewolf - the flea bitten beast that had once
roamed the grounds of Hogwarts and still haunted Snape's nightmares remained
alive. But now Dumbledore had asked Snape to make the wolfsbane potion for the
monster once more.
The look on Snape’s face was that of a snake silkily winding its way
in for the kill, a look of concentrated smugness. Snape felt no regret. In
fact, he was doing the wizarding world a favour, one that was long over due.
This is what should have happened all those years ago. He wondered if Dumbledore knew the
intricacies of the natural, slow, undetectable poisons that could be added to
potions. It didn't matter - his own mission would soon be complete.
Lowering the goblet, Snape raised his wand, and Apparated to Number
Twelve Grimmauld Place - to give the werewolf his very best potion ever.