Blood Leads the Blind
Part 1 - I Didn't Do It
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and so forth obviously belong to J.K.
Rowling and whoever, besides Warner Brothers, own any rights to it.
No infringement intended.
Spoilers: Up to the third book, at the very least.
The school year had only started a few weeks earlier, so it was
expected that not too many students in the Gryffindor's common room
were worrying themselves with studying just yet. In fact, no one
expected any of them to be studying very hard yet, all save one. This
particular young witch, by the name of Hermione Granger, was rarely
seen without her nose stuck somewhere in a book. Strangely enough,
she wasn't reading at the moment, though there was a rather large
open book laying on the table in front of her. Instead, her attention
was directed towards her companion who was reading a recent issue of
Quidditch World and doing his best to pay as little attention to her
"I don't see why people insist on there being such a distinction
between wizards and warlocks," Hermione rambled on, her voice growing
more impassioned the further she tried to explain her point of view,
"I mean, everyone insists on calling male magic-users as wizards, yet
they're also warlocks. But who uses the warlock term anymore other
than in titles? So why is it that female magic-users are just
"Don't have a clue," Ron Weasley mumbled distractedly from behind his
"There is no female opposite of wizard, and you don't see anyone
referring to a woman as a wizard," Hermione continued, unconcerned
with the fact that Ron was only paying half-attention to her. "It's
always witch, and the opposite of witch is warlock. So why do men get
the option of being called wizards when all women have is witch? It
doesn't make sense."
"You could always call yourself a wizardess," Ron stated vaguely
before he stopped for a moment to actually think about what he'd just
said. "No, wait, that sounds kind of stupid. Nevermind."
"Exactly my point," Hermione said, looking proudly over at Ron as if
he understood what she was getting at. "There is no female opposite
of wizards. It's not fair and it sounds awfully sexist to me."
Ron blinked in confusion as he lowered his magazine. "What exactly
are we talking about Hermione?"
"Why, Women's Liberation of course, Ron," Hermione said matter of
factly as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.
Ron blinked some more. He was still terribly confused. "You look
pretty liberated to me," he offered lamely.
"Why thank you Ron, but that's not the point," Hermione said, for
once ignoring the possible spark that would ignite one of their usual
arguments. "Most of the world has realized that women are equal to
men in all things. Don't you think the magic-using community should
acknowledge this as well?"
"Uh... I guess," Ron stumbled over the words as he wondered just what
Hermione had gotten into. Looking around the room helplessly for
anything that he could use to change the subject, his mind grasped
upon their missing friend. "What do you think's taking Harry so long?
Practice usually doesn't go this late."
Humming to herself as she glanced around the room, Hermione said,
"I don't know. Maybe they're learning some new strategy or whatever
you have to do to play Quidditch."
"Don't be dim," Ron said as he looked suspiciously at her out of the
corner of his eye. "I know you've talked about Quidditch before. And
you know everything that's ever been written in a book; surely you've
read more than just one book about how you play Quidditch."
Hermione smirked at the almost compliment. "Maybe..." She didn't have
much chance to say anything else as their missing companion slid in
through the portrait hole and stalked over towards them. Harry's
expression could only be described as thunderous, and Hermione was
almost surprised that he didn't have an accompanying storm cloud
hanging over his head. Something bad had happened, no doubt, and they
were about to hear all about it.
"Hey," Harry said shortly in greeting as he plopped down in the big
armchair beside Ron. Closing his eyes, he leaned his head back
against the chair's thick upholstery and sighed in annoyance.
Ron and Hermione looked at each other worriedly before returning
their attention to their friend. "Hi Harry," Hermione ventured
carefully, "is something wrong?"
"Yeah, what happened?" Ron burst out, not one to tiptoe around the
Remaining as he was with his eyes still closed, Harry answered
"Not that bloody-"
Ron and Hermione said both at once, both stopping at the same time
and casting each other a glare. Frowning, Hermione began again, "I
hope you didn't-"
"I have detention tomorrow," Harry said, answering the question
before Hermione could even finish it.
"Oh great. Who caught you?" Ron asked in mild disgust.
"Snape," Harry replied flatly.
"Oh no," Hermione moaned as she began to massage her forehead with
her right hand. She felt a headache coming on. "How many points did
"Just twenty," Harry said, raising his head and finally looking at
"You're kidding." Hermione gawked at Harry in disbelief.
"No way! Is he sick or something?" Ron asked as he joined Hermione in
gawking at their friend.
"No," Harry told them, the corners of his lips twitching up as he
fought back an amused smirk. "Dumbledore was passing by in the
hallway. I think he was trying not to look bad."
"Well, that's something at least." Hermione leaned back in her chair,
crossing her fingers together over her stomach before looking back at
Harry with concern. "What are you supposed to do for detention
"Report to Filch after classes with Draco," Harry grumbled as he
closed his eyes again and dropped his head back onto the chair.
"Sounds like it's going to be a wonderful night tomorrow," Ron
muttered darkly. He leaned back in his chair as well and glared up at
the ceiling, fantasizing about the many ways he'd like to see Draco
Malfoy suffer for ridiculing them constantly and getting them into
There was very little conversation between them after that. Harry
kept going over the confrontation in his mind and just kept getting
more and more annoyed at himself for reacting so badly to Malfoy's
usual idiocy. Hermione returned to her book about certain breeds of
magical felines after giving Harry a quick concerned glance. Ron kept
fantasizing about all the awful things that could happen to Malfoy,
though eventually he ran out of ideas and decided to start reading
his magazine again.
It was quite unusual for the trio of friends to be so quiet around
each other. It was so unusual in fact, that the other Gryffindors
kept looking over at them strangely as if expecting them to do
something bizarre any minute now. Strangely enough, the three said
nary a word until it was time to head to bed and gave each other
their usual good nights before parting for their own dormitories.
Harry trudged up the stairs to their floor with Ron following a short
ways behind him. He wished the night were longer so it would be that
many more hours before he had to go to see Filch tomorrow. Maybe
Filch would actually torture him this time. Actually, he wouldn't
mind it all that much as long as Malfoy got tortured too.
Chuckling silently to himself at the possibility of watching Filch
torture Malfoy, Harry quickly divested himself of his robes and
clothes and pulled his pajamas on. "Night Ron," he called out as he
climbed into bed.
"Good night Harry... and try not to get yourself killed tomorrow. I'd
be very put out if I had to explain to Mum about how you got murdered
by the caretaker," Ron murmured as he curled up under the covers of
"I'll try my best, but no promises," Harry snickered as he took his
glasses off and set them on the side table. Shaking his head at the
fact that he was finding humor it what was probably going to be a
horrible day tomorrow, Harry rolled over, closed his eyes and drifted
off to sleep.
He knew he was dreaming the instant he opened his eyes. He wasn't
quite sure how he knew this; he just did. This particular dream was
a bit different than his usual fare. It was solid, felt more real
than the others, yet at the same time it felt like a wisp of smoke
that would fade away at any moment. It was all very strange.
He 'awoke' on a thin, bare strip of ground that wound its way through
what appeared to be a forest. It must have been a game trail of some
kind because it wasn't clear enough in places for people to be
walking along it regularly.
Sitting up, he looked around him in curiosity and noticed that the
feeling of strangeness wasn't the only odd thing here. The trees
looked weird. There were pine trees and regular trees but they
didn't look like anything he had seen before. The pine trees had
enormous needles that looked almost like sabers, and the regular
trees looked like black and white birch trees that were photo
negatives of each other. Beneath the trees were a myriad amounts of
ferns with wavy fronds and others with stiff leaves that made them
look like some sort of cactus. They were all sorts of colors: green
and red and purple and blue and some that apparently glowed in the
dark because it was night time and they had soft halos of white and
yellow lights around them. He wondered briefly if any of this stuff
actually existed in reality, or if it was just something his
imagination was concocting at will. Surely there wasn't anything
like them in Britain.
A sound trickled from further down the path and he realized it had
been completely silent before then. That made everything even
stranger, forests were rarely silent even when the animals were
frightened of something. The wind, at the very least, creaked with
a welcomed tendency through the trees. However, that hadn't been
happening here and it still wasn't. All that he could hear was that
new sound. It was a familiar sound to him, one of falling water.
Shrugging to himself, he climbed to his feet and headed off in the
general direction the sound seemed to come from. Maybe the sound
would lead him to the reason he was having this dream. Then again,
maybe the source of the sound was the reason he was having this
dream in the first place. Hmm, what was unique about water that would
have him dreaming about it? He wracked his mind for an answer as he
ducked a few low hanging branches, but after a few minutes of
thinking about it he still didn't have a clue.
He didn't have much longer to think about it he discovered as he
ducked several more branches and discovered he had arrived. His
destination was a decent sized clearing in the forest with a
perfectly circular pond centered in the middle of it. The sound of
falling water that he had heard was apparently created by a thin
waterfall that seemingly fell out of the sky and into the pond.
The clearing, in and of itself, would have been strange enough were
it not for the figure of a man who stood at the very edge of the
pool. This made the entire thing even stranger because, even though
the man had his back to him, he could easily recognize who it was. He
could never mistake the familiar black robes and the greasy, black
hair as anyone other than Snape. What the nasty Potions Master was
doing in his dream of all things was a question that brought up some
very unappealing ideas.
He froze at the cold, even toned question. Surely he hadn't been
noticed yet. Still, it was Snape after all and he wouldn't put it
past the man to have made a potion that allowed him to see around the
back of his head. It was awfully disconcerting to think about though.
"Come over here," the Potions Master commanded without turning around.
"You can't see anything by just standing there under the trees like
an idiot, Potter."
Harry blinked in amazement at the sound of his last name. He hadn't
actually thought about his own identity, asides from the fact that he
lived in Britain, for the entire dream up until now. That really was
strange, he usually had the knowledge of who he was beat into his
head constantly by everybody. And even if somebody wasn't gasping out
the dreaded 'It's Harry Potter!' then all he had to do was look in a
mirror and see his unmistakable scar proclaiming to everybody in the
vicinity that 'Here's Harry Potter!'. Sometimes, like now, he very
much disliked being 'Harry Potter'.
"Yes sir," he muttered sourly and trudged unhappily over towards the
one professor of his that utterly hated his guts.
"Now then, Potter," Snape began as Harry stepped up beside him. He
almost sounded as if he were amused by something. Gesturing down at
the pond, he continued, "Can you tell me what that is?"
Harry chewed on his bottom lip as he looked down at the water and
then blanched at what he saw. Lurking just beneath the surface was
what looked like enormous serpentine coils of some snake-type
reptile. The coils were covered in glittering scales of midnight blue
and sky blue that curled together to create a mind-bending pattern
that would most likely make someone rather sick if they looked at it
for too long.
"Uhm, is it a giant snake sir?" Harry asked, carefully keeping his
voice meek just in case Snape felt like being snappy, which was
usually always but that was neither here nor there.
"No, it is not a giant snake," Snape said sardonically. He then shook
his head as if he were wondering why he even bothered. "Try again."
Harry stared over at his professor, taken aback by the fact that the
snarly Potions Master hadn't yelled at him yet. This dream really was
getting terribly strange. Giving himself a shake of disbelief, he
turned his attention back down to the pool. It had to be a snake of
some kind, surely it couldn't look like that and be something else.
Then again, he was forgetting that magic tended to be quite
misleading. But still, as far as he could guess with the little
information he had, it was at the very least a reptile.
As he gazed down at the coils that flexed under the water, Harry was
reminded of another gigantic serpent he had been unlucky enough to
run across. The basilisk, however, had been a bright, poisonous
looking green instead of a sickening pattern of blues. That didn't
mean basilisks couldn't come in different colors of scales though.
Grimacing at the possibility, he asked, "It's not another basilisk
is it, sir?"
"No, not nearly as dangerous. Or perhaps, it is simply smart enough
to hide just how dangerous it is," Snape said, tilting his head to
the side as if pondering upon something. After a few moments, he
finally looked down at his student and added, "It might as well be
though, it basically wants the same thing from you that Slytherin's
Harry took an unconscious step back as he finally got a good look at
the Potions Master's face. It was much the same as always, with one
very disconcerting difference: the irises of Snape's eyes were
glowing a soft emerald green. They were almost the same color as his,
though his eyes most certainly did not glow in any sort of fashion.
This dream was no longer strange, it was flat out bizarre.
Harry went over the details of the dream he had had the night before
as he walked down to Filch's office, dragging his heels the entire
way. Hermione had been nice enough to take his books back to the
Gryffindors' tower for him after their last class, which he was quite
grateful for, but he still had to go down for detention. He wasn't
looking forward to it. Anybody in their right mind wouldn't be
looking forward to it. So to distract himself from thoughts of what
Filch had in store for him, he poked around at his memories of the
It had been nothing short of bizarre, especially because he could
remember it quite clearly even now. He rarely remembered much of
anything about his dreams, unless of course they were visions and he
doubted greatly this one had been such. He had never seen or been
anywhere that looked even vaguely like where he had been in the dream
and certainly Snape would never be quite so... patient with him.
There was another possibility though, the dream could have been some
sort of divination to warn him about the future. Unfortunately, that
would mean he had to interpret all the little nuances of it and well,
he really sucked at that sort of thing. He definitely wouldn't go to
Trelawney for help either. She'd just use it as an excuse to predict
his death again; not that she didn't do that already every time he
had to attend her class.
Basically, all he had managed to do was think himself back to square
one where the dream was concerned. He was almost at Filch's office
too, just one more hallway and then he'd be there. This was going to
be ever so fun. Why couldn't Malfoy keep his mouth shut for once?
Why couldn't he not lose his temper over something so stupid in the
Coming round the corner, Harry's trudge slowed to a near crawl.
Filch's office was directly ahead, and standing right in front of it
was a sneering Malfoy. Lovely, even if Filch didn't torture them,
Draco would probably make sure that the entire time they had to spend
together in detention would be torture for him. Still, asides from
the typical sneer, Draco didn't look all that thrilled to be there.
In fact, he looked almost... scared. A scared Draco tended to be
harder to deal with than a superior-feeling Draco though.
"Well well, look who decided to finally show up," Draco drawled in
dark amusement as he spied Harry. His tone was off, something he
failed to notice, and thus he sounded almost squeaky in the empty
hallway. "Don't tell me the great Harry Potter is afraid of a lowly
Harry frowned at the barb, but under the circumstances decided to not
be too snippy. "You ought to be careful about that Malfoy, calling
people names was what got you into trouble in the first place," he
said nonchalantly as he reached over and knocked on the caretaker's
"Hmph, I dare say it was more likely your temper getting the best of
you again when I was just stating the obvious," Draco said and rolled
his eyes. Was Harry imagining things, or was Draco actually taking
comfort from their usual sniping at each other. No, couldn't be...
Both of the boys took an instinctive step back when the door flew
open and Filch stepped out snarling, "This had better be- oh, it's
only you two." The caretaker's look of outright fury melted into one
of heavy distaste as he stepped off to the side and gestured within.
"Well come on, the less time you spend in my office the better. And
don't touch anything!"
The two boys filed silently into the room, Draco attempting to hold
onto his smirk and Harry trying to, at the very least, look brave.
Harry ignored all the things cluttered around them in the room, he'd
been here before after all. Draco's eyes darted around, briefly
glancing over everything. He didn't look all that impressed. Not much
of a surprise there, very little ever impressed him.
"Now then," Filch said as he stepped behind his desk and studied them
with hooded eyes, "I was looking forward to dragging out some of my
old... toys to try out on you. Unfortunately, something by the name
of the seventh years has come up." Grimacing, he turned around and
grasped two long wooden handles that were leaning up against the
wall. They looked sort of like brooms. "As loathe as I am to it, I'm
simply giving you the task of sweeping the south courtyard clean for
Draco blinked in outright confusion as he took the broom Filch
imperiously handed to him. "But sir, isn't the south courtyard just
mostly gravel?" he asked hesitantly.
"Yes, it is," Filch answered, smirking with something almost akin to
pleasure. Of course, they'd be out all night 'sweeping' the gravel
until one of the professors took pity on them.
"But sir, what about dinner?" Draco persisted, unwilling to let the
matter drop. Being alone with Potter for a detention he knew he
didn't deserve was bad enough, but he definitely didn't want to have
to suffer through it with an empty stomach.
"Oh, I wouldn't worry about dinner," Filch said as his smirk turned
into a nasty sort of grin, "You'll be too busy sweeping to bother
about hunger. Now get out!"
Both Harry and Draco blanched at Filch's venomous yell before quickly
staggering out of the room, doing their best not to trip over their
work brooms. A deceptively even-tempered Filch was even scarier than
a usually thunderous Filch. Well, at least they weren't going to be
tortured. That was something.
"Dumbledore is insane to keep that madman around," Harry heard Draco
mutter as they headed off towards the south courtyard.
Sighing wearily, Harry said, "I'll have to agree with you there."
"Maybe if I talk to my father about it," Draco continued. Either he
hadn't heard Harry or just felt like ignoring him.
Harry wasn't feeling too charitable and snapped, "Is that all you
can think of? Because every time something's not going your way you
threaten to run off to your father. Can you not do anything for
yourself? Does he have to fix everything for you?"
Draco stopped cold, an ugly sneer working its way over his face.
Then, as if a switch had gone off, his face smoothed out into a
patronizing smile. "At least I have a father," he said sweetly.
Harry gave him a stony glare and walked passed him. "Go die," he
growled as he stalked off down the hallway.
"You first," Draco called out as he followed after Potter in what
could only be described as good cheer. Maybe he wouldn't speak too
badly of Filch to his father.
Harry deliberately ignored Malfoy as they walked out into the south
courtyard and started 'sweeping'. It wasn't exactly the easiest thing
to do since Draco kept flinging barbed insults his way. It was made
even worse when word got around about what they had to do for
detention and several other Slytherins joined Draco in insulting him.
Thankfully, Professor McGonagall showed up and ran them off to dinner
an hour later, threatening dire consequences on any student she found
lingering behind. Harry hoped fervently that she would come back
later to order them to bed, disapproving glare or not. He didn't want
to spend all night doing something that was completely futile.
Another half hour passed after that, maybe longer, Harry wasn't
really sure how long it had been, but it had been a decent amount of
time after Malfoy finally shut up before he looked up and found a
certain someone watching him. Snape stood at the far end of the
covered stone walkway skirting the main keep. He was near the
doorway, and thus shrouded in the lengthening shadows brought on by
dusk, but it was unmistakably him. Even though Harry couldn't see
Snape's face, for some unknown reason he just knew the man was
staring at him. Why?
After several tense moments, Harry was rather grateful to note that
at least Snape's eyes weren't glowing green like they had in his
dream the night before. It wasn't much of a comfort, but at least it
was something. It was at that point when Harry finally noticed that
his scar was itching, not burning or being painful in any sort of
way, just itching. After a few more minutes, he decided it was quite
maddening and reached up to scratch at it. When he lowered his arm,
Snape was gone... and his scar still itched.
This was really rather odd, first he had that bizarre dream and now
his scar was bothering him. Admittedly, it usually hurt when it was
warning him of something, but maybe this wasn't something terribly
bad, just something weird. That wasn't much comfort to him either
though. Speaking of comfort, the stars were starting to come out and
no one had come to fetch them yet. Surely they wouldn't have to stay
out 'sweeping' all night.
"This is all your fault you know," Harry heard Draco hiss from across
the courtyard. It was more of an annoyed statement than a question.
"If I'm remembering correctly, I wasn't the one who started throwing
insults about just how many mudbloods the Gryffindor house had and
just how suspect it was that said smeared house happened to be my
house," Harry said, his tone turning almost to ice as he spoke. He
really didn't feel like getting into it with Malfoy at the moment.
"Well, it's only the truth," Draco drawled, the smirk on his pale
face showing clearly even in the dim light of night time. "Your
mother was a mudblood, after all. Terrible family she had too from
what I gather. I'm sure she was loathe to associate with muggles
after her difficult childhood with such a terrible family. I don't
see why you do."
"Shut up Malfoy, I really don't want to discuss this with you. Nor do
I ever want to know how you found that out," Harry said icily. Why
didn't someone come and get them? Preferably before he ended up
"My father was interested in your family before... well, before
certain events. And he liked telling me all sorts of things for
bedtime stories," Draco continued on nonchalantly, perhaps unaware
or all too aware of Harry's building temper.
Harry resisted the urge to snap the broomstick he held within his
hands, it was a close thing too. Way to announce that your father was
involved with the murder of my parents, Harry thought bitterly. He
really wasn't surprised about it though. Lucius Malfoy seemed the
type to always want to be involved in murder. Harry wondered darkly
if all the Malfoys shared that particular trait.
"Nothing to say Potter?" Draco asked snidely as Harry turned his back
to him. It was just as well, he was starting to get bored of needling
Potter tonight. He wanted to be back inside, climbing into his bed
and going to sleep. It was just like Dumbledore to show up at the
most inopportune time. He knew Professor Snape would have let him off
just fine for pestering Potter if the Headmaster hadn't shown up. His
father was going to be quite disappointed when he heard about this.
And he would; his father knew everything there was to know.
Harry ground his teeth together in the effort it took not to go over
there and beat that smirk off of Malfoy's face. At times like this,
he sometimes wished he was as unrestrained about such things as Ron
was. Ron wouldn't have put up with this. But no, he didn't want
anymore detentions on top of this one. He could ignore Malfoy for the
rest of the night. He could.
Reaching up again, Harry scratched at his scar and decided it was a
blessing in disguise. At least with it itching him to death he had
something else to focus on than Malfoy. It really was maddeningly
itchy though. He wondered what itching could possibly mean. Maybe he
could talk to Dumbledore about it sometime. Or maybe not, he thought
faintly as the itching instantly morphed itself into a spike of agony
spearing directly into his mind.
Draco looked up sharply as he saw Potter stumble slightly with one
hand clamped to his forehead. Oh no, if Potter thought he was going
to get out of detention by pretending his scar was hurting him, he
had another thing coming. If he had to stay out here in the dark
doing something as ridiculous as sweeping gravel around for no
other reason than Filch being a stupid squib and Dumbledore having
atrocious timing, then Potter was going to suffer through it with
Harry barely noticed Malfoy stalking over towards him, probably to
give him a piece of his mind again, when he heard something that made
everything else very inconsequential. The agony in his head just flat
out stopped at the sound of distant hissing.
' there it is '
' it's a mammal '
' so warm '
' not for long '
Snakes. Serpents of some kind. He could hear them. Did this have
something to do with that dream? Ignoring Malfoy, he stared up at the
Hogwarts battlements. The hissing had sounded like it was somewhere
high up above him. But where?
"Listen Potter, I don't know what it is you're up to, but don't
expect me to let you get away with it," Draco said, trying his best
to sound as much like Professor Snape as he could manage. Growling as
Potter just ignore him, he continued on doggedly, "You're going to
serve out this despicable detention with me if I have to... have
to... have to handcuff you to me!"
Draco vaguely heard some odd twanging sound at the end of his tirade
before Potter fell back against him and they both collapsed onto the
ground. "What the-?" he snarled as he looked up at the boy sprawled
across him like a dead weight and then he just stopped. Sticking up
out of Potter's left shoulder was the wooden shaft of a deadly
looking arrow. And Potter was starting to bleed on him.
Say hello to the first Harry Potter fanfic I've ever written and the
beginning of my writing exercise for the summer. It's a bit of an
experiment to teach myself how to write with some regularity, and my
HP plotbunnies were the only ones open-ended enough for it. There's
not much Snape here in the beginning, but have no fear, there will be
much more of him. He's my favorite character, after all. Also, while
I'm a big fan of slash I don't have any planned for this fic as of
yet. Maybe some subtext but that's about it right now. Whether I put
any real slash in is up to whether the plotbunnies breed something or
As for the use of any type of British-ism, I lay the blame completely
at kkscatnip's feet. She wanted to beta. If they actually work and
make sense, praise her. If they're screwed up and aren't appropriate,
blame her too.
And yes, I like my run-on sentences from hell. I insist on them being
of a proper size to kill things with. *EG*