Title: You Can't Argue With Your Heart
Author: Joanne Collins
Email: bennmatt@yahoo.com
Pairing: Severus Snape/Quirrel, Snape/Remus Lupin
Rating: PG-13
Summary: Set sometime during the time Harry was unconscious after the climax of The Philosopher's Stone. Snape reflects on the past and rumours.
Web Page: http://www.geocities.com/Paris/Metro/4859/Joanne.html
Disclaimer: The characters are not mine, they belong to JKR. The movie versions belong to Alan Rickman and Ian Hart. I'm not sure who wrote it, but I quoted a line from the song The Rumour, which is sung by Olivia Newton-John. A Nundu is a kind of leopard mentioned in
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them.
Dedication: To the Snapeslash list. One of the discussion threads heavily inspired parts of this. Thanks to Cathryn for beta reading *hug*



There's a line from a Muggle song that was popular a few years ago.

"Once the rumour spreads, the truth is just a thing of the past."

That is so true. It seems the whole school is convinced I'm after the Defence Against The Dark Arts professorship. I even heard Fred, or was it George, Weasley laying bets that I would "worm my way into the job for the last few weeks of term, then persuade Dumbledore to keep him on next year." Not a bad plan if I actually wanted the position.

The only thing that moves faster than a Nundu is gossip, twice as fast if it's not true.

It seems I've succeeded in hiding my true motivations yet again. Twice even, though I didn't succeed in my task the second time. Perhaps if I'd known what it was - who I was up against - but I never suspected. How could I have?

I didn't even suspect Charles was behind Potter's trouble at the Quidditch match. How could I have been so blind and stupid? Knowing his aspirations of power, how could I not even consider that he might be seduced to the dark side?

Seduced. Even now I can't help but think of him in those words. Words of desire. Words of gentleness. Words of...I can't think of it as love. Not even when it seemed to be. I don't know if it ever was love between us. At least not on his side.

On mine? Yes. I've opened myself to love twice, and both times it was a mistake. Not meant to be. Perhaps it's time that I accepted that I'm not meant to be happy. It would be much easier if I did that, I think.

I was so young the first time. I didn't ever think he could feel the same way. And when I had reason to believe that he did, I wasn't sure if I could pass the gauntlet of his friends. Of James and Sirius, Lily and Peter. I don't think any of them liked me, and I returned the feeling. Except for Remus. He got under my defenses before I knew he was trying.

But that ended when Sirius played that "prank" on me. Typical recklessness of a teenager, I don't think he considered the possible consequences. It's very odd to think of a contemporary as young, but we were all young then.

If only I'd been able to talk to Remus before he jumped to the conclusion that I was scared of him. I suppose it didn't help when I jumped back from his touch, but surely I could have been excused feeling a little frightened at the time. Still, he took it as a rejection of himself, and I couldn't make him believe otherwise.

And of course before I had the opportunity to convince him of how I felt, there were far too many other things to deal with. Things that were unfortunately more important than a "minor quarrel" between lovers.

Minor. Well, maybe in the grand scheme of things.

Then - well, I'll think about that another time.

When I came here again, I was changed in ways that I'm still not finished processing. And he was here. Charles. He reminded me a little of Remus, Charles' shyness was so like his. I wonder now if that's what first drew me to him. I can't remember it all.

I loved to watch him work. That's when I started observing his classes whenever I could. And it's where the rumours started.

"Snape's spending an awful lot of time watching Quirrel's classes."

"Snape! Spending more and more time here, aren't you?"

"Do you suppose Snape wants to change subjects?"

And it grew from there.

Charles and I encouraged it. It allowed us to spend more time together, whispering to each other. Some of the things he would say - and do. Touching me under the table, hands stealing under my robes, stroking my thighs, moving higher - and there were the times when we weren't in public. When we were in my or his bedroom, and there were no layers. No clothing, no veil of respectability.

He liked to be bound. To be tied down and at my mercy. I thought it was about fun, a sexual game. It was for me, but not for him. He had demons that went deeper than I ever suspected.

We'd talk after I untied him, being gentle, rubbing lotion into his wrists and ankles. He'd tell me that he liked the feeling of powerlessness, but he liked it even more when he felt how powerful I was. I'd hold him, and stroke his hair - when he had it - and wonder how he could never know that it was he who held the power in our relationship. That he was the one who could break me with a word or a look, if he chose to.

But he never chose to.

Then he went away. Travelling, I thought. He was so different when he came back.

This time, I was the one who was bound. I thought that he'd found some kind of confidence when he'd been away from me, that he wanted to experience power on the other side.

But this was different too. He wasn't gentle with me, as I'd been with him. He would tie me so tightly, I couldn't feel my hands or feet. He would whip me, something I'd never been able to bring myself to do to him. He would leave marks. Marks I wore proudly, as something to physically show what he could do to me.

He wouldn't let me stroke his hair any more. He never took off that damn turban. I tried to unwind it once, and he whispered that he liked the idea of wearing it. I didn't question it, but I felt, even then, that it was a barrier between us. If I had only known how much of a barrier.

And then, to find that the turban had hidden - him.

Well, it's over now. Charles is dead - though really, he died the moment he let himself be seduced to the dark side.

And I'm alone. Again.

It's just too painful to open my heart. I did it twice, and both times it turned out to be much more than a mistake.

I'm going to devote myself to Potions. At least that can't disappoint me.

Love is for people who can take being hurt. And I can't. Not any more.