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Here it is! The promised quick update after last chapter’s dreadful cliffie. Hope it clears things up. I’ll let you read then…

Disclaimer: I own nothing, I am worthless, everything of value belongs to someone other than me, and the squirrel outside my window is mocking me with its massive collection of walnuts which it stripped from a tree I do not own. Merlin I need a Zoloft.




He just sat there for a minute, hands over his face, long fingers making circles on his forehead. Jade, mind buzzing unpleasantly, watched Snape from her spot on the floor. Her light globe went out with a small “pop” and the room plunged into darkness. A second later the torches that normally lit the classroom flamed to life and Jade saw Snape had his wand out. She scrambled to her feet, still clutching the torn page as if her life depended on it, and moved out from behind his desk. He stood, too, and walked toward her. For a brief moment she thought he might hit her, but he passed her to sink into the chair behind his desk.

Mobilichair,” he murmured with a flick of his wand. One of the student chairs floated over to rest in front of his desk next to Jade. “Sit.”

She did. When he did not speak for several moments, she asked quietly, “Why don’t you like me?”

Snape, who had been massaging his temples and staring at a point on his desk, looked up sharply. “Why would you think that?”

“You never came and got me,” Jade replied simply.

“I thought you were dead!”

It was her turn to be startled. “What?!”

He looked very tired. “Let me explain. From the beginning. It will be simpler. Your mother, my sister, moved out very soon after she graduated from Hogwarts. She planned to marry Salinas – Michael Salinas – after her graduation, which she did. Our parents did not approve of the match; Demetria did not care. They did not talk after that. As far as I know, they only received a small note announcing your birth. I do know they never met you. I never did either, as a matter of fact.”

Here Jade broke in; she had to ask, voice trembling slightly, “Are they still alive, my parents?”

“No,” he replied shortly, eyes fixed on Jade. “That, I suppose, would be my fault. Do not interrupt me.” He held up a hand to stop her from talking. “I became a Death Eater soon after my graduation. You know what a Death Eater is?” Jade nodded. “Soon after I joined I realized it was… not as I had imagined it. Unfortunately one does not hand in a resignation to the Dark Lord,” his voice held much bitterness, “so I did the only thing I could do to remedy my mistake; I became a spy for Dumbledore. Several years passed in which I performed my duties undetected.

“Eventually, however, suspicions arose, in one man in particular. When he discovered my…disloyalty… he did the first thing that came to mind. Those I worked among were not the brightest. He did not go straight to the Dark Lord with his information. The first thing he wished to do was to cause me as much pain as possible and planned to do so through my family. By that time our parents were dead…before their time, granted, but that is of no importance now. He chose my next closest family member: my sister. When I arrived at her home it was still standing, although how I do not know. The inside was torn apart, as though a storm had been contained within the walls. She and your father were found dead. You were never found. You were assumed to be dead. Imagine my surprise when you turned up eleven years later.”

Jade stared back at him, trying very hard to concentrate on what he was saying. “Sir, the man who killed my parents…” She let the question trail off.

“Is dead.”

“Why was I assumed to be dead? Why wouldn’t people look for me?”

“There are … magical ways of searching for those who are missing,” he replied slowly. “All involve the detection of the magical …aura given off by a particular witch or wizard. I have discussed this with Dumbledore and he believes your magic was altered in the attack on your house. The particular spell used in the attack was very difficult, very complicated, and very powerful. Cast incorrectly it caused serious damaged to both the caster and those around him. He was found dead, although it is unknown whether it was his spell or a defense by your parents that killed him. The spell harnesses the power of the elements and directs them for a single purpose. Unfortunately the spell went wrong.

“It seems to have resulted in the permanent alteration of your magic. Your magical aura now is similar to that of a particularly violent storm.” Here Jade could have sworn the corners of his mouth twitched. “Any other questions?”

Jade’s mind was reeling. She knew once she had time to digest everything she would have a million questions, but at the moment she could think of none. She shook her head. “Not at the moment, sir … Uncle?”

His hands gave a convulsive little twitch. “No,” he replied flatly, leaving no room for question. “You will address me as every other student does and I will treat you as I treat every other student. As such, you will receive detention. I do not tolerate students breaking into my classroom under any circumstances. Is that clear?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Then you may go.” He gave her a nod of dismissal. “We will speak further when you have had time to …think about things. It is your own business if you wish to tell anyone of the acquisition of your powers. It is my wish, however, for you to keep our… relationship… to yourself. It would not do for others to believe you have an unfair advantage in my class, which you do not.”

Jade rose from her seat, replying, “I understand, sir.” She made her way back through the rows of tables to the doorway, where she paused. “Goodnight, sir.” She left without waiting for a response. ‘Wouldn’t want things to be awkward,’ she thought sarcastically.

She hardly thought about where she was going as she walked slowly back to the Slytherin common room; her feet seemed to move on their own accord. Her mind was still buzzing and didn’t appear to want to stop anytime soon. ‘Once I explain everything to Draco, maybe it will make more sense to me, too.’ Her insides gave a terrible lurch. It was a moment before she figured out why she now felt very bad.

‘Draco. Professor Snape called the person behind him ‘Mr. Malfoy.’ Draco… turned me in?’ Out loud she whispered, “Why? Why would he do that? I don’t understand.” Harry and Ron’s words flashed through her mind. ‘“He can’t be trusted!”’ Outside Hogwarts castle the sky suddenly darkened as thick clouds rolled in.

She realized she was still gripping the page, folded it, and tucked it into her pocket. Her head felt very full, as though it threatened to overflow. She shook her head, trying to make the feeling disappear. It didn’t. Her feet had stopped. She had reached the common room entrance. “Aconite,” she whispered. The stone door slid open. Stepping inside, she was thankful to find it empty. The only light came from a few candles placed on tables, the light strangely unwavering. Jade headed toward the girls’ corridor.

Somewhere in the direction of the fireplace a chair scraped across the floor. Jade spun around to face Draco. He was standing a few feet away, candles casting strange shadows across his face. He was staring at her with an expression Jade was unable to place.

“So how’d it go?” he asked quietly.

Something inside her snapped. Anger flooded her chest, burning away the tears that had threatened to fall ever since she left Snape’s office. Seeing him standing there, as if nothing was wrong, as if he had done nothing wrong, as if everything had not just changed forever, made her want to scream. She didn’t know what she wanted to do, only that whatever she did wouldn’t be enough to make her stop feeling this way. Outside thunder tore at the sky in long and unceasing waves.

“‘How’d it go?’” Jade repeated, voice shaking a little in her attempt to control it. “‘How’d it go?’ How can you even talk to me?” she spat. “How can you even look at me after what you did?”

He started toward her, hand reaching out as though to stop her from doing anything drastic. “Jade, listen to me– ”

“No!” Her hands balled into fists at her sides. “I don’t want to listen to you! I just want you to leave me alone!”

As she spun away from him she felt his hand wrap around her wrist.

“Jade, listen– ”

“Don’t touch me!” she screamed. Miniature lightening bolts flashed around their hands, glowing white-hot in the darkness of the common room. As she pulled against his grip they seemed frozen in time: both staring at the lightening encasing their hands. It was hot against her skin and she knew it must be burning him. Then the spell was broken. He gasped and released her. She dashed the few steps to the girls’ corridor and, once inside the entrance, turned to face him. “Harry and Ron were right: you can’t be trusted!” The ceiling of the Great Hall mirrored lightening bolts that slashed the sky, tearing it apart by its very seams.

Clutching the hand the lightening had touched, Draco spat, “Fine. Believe what you want.” He whirled and stalked off down the boys’ corridor. A few seconds later Jade heard a door slam and everything was deathly still.

Jade took a deep, shuddering breath. With the new silence her anger had vanished as suddenly as it had appeared, leaving behind a terrible, empty nothingness. She swallowed. It was difficult. Suddenly she wanted nothing more than to run and never stop. Maybe if she ran forever, reality would never catch her. So she ran.

She ran out of the common room and down the empty dungeon corridors, feet pounding the ground, footsteps echoing in her ears, blotting out everything but her own breath. As she ran, the tears she had fled found her, spilling over to blur the hallways she passed. Rain streamed down upon the castle in torrents, spilling from the roofs of the towers to slip down the stone, forming churning rivers that danced down the castle steps. She ran until her legs gave under her. She sagged against a statue and let herself slip down until she sat on the floor.

When she caught her breath enough to look around, she realized her legs had carried her to the entrance of the library. ‘I should go back,’ she thought. ‘I can’t stay here.’ But even standing seemed beyond reach. As silent tears slipped down her cheeks and waves of exhaustion overtook her, a thought floated across her mind, ‘I wonder why I’m crying.’





… well? Yes? No? Makes sense? More confused? Want to smack Jade up the side of the head with a 2 by 4? Want to cry with her? Let me know! Just enter your thoughts (any random thoughts will do) in the blue box under this paragraph! I dearly love feedback! Yes, I do know this is a bit of a cliffie in itself (or at least a to-be-continued) but how else would I ensure you come back?! Aw, I love you guys! *hugs for everyone!* Wow, I’m in a sappy mood right now.

~*~dream_catcher~*~

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