Soft light roused Severus into consciousness. He laid still, eyes still closed, letting his senses search the environment for danger. HIs body hummed with dull pain. He heard no voices, no walking. Despite hearing that there was no one around, he could feel a presence. He felt warm despite hearing a soft breeze rattle against the windows. Soft sheets laid under his fingertips. Deciding that he was somewhere where danger wasn’t imminent, Severus opened his eyes. He looked around as he winced, his body stiff and sore. Brown stone walls shimmered in the light. A man in majestic purple robes sat in a chair off to Severus’ left, reading The Daily Prophet
“Albus.” Severus muttered in a hoarse voice. He noted his throat was very dry.
“Ah, Severus.” Dumbledore remarked, lifting his head to look at the man in bed.
“We know.” Dumbledore replied, folding the paper in half and holding it up for Severus to see.
Growing Number of Disappearances Since Appearance of Dark Mark: What Does It Mean?
“How long have I been out?”
“A little more than a week.”
“A week!” Severus exclaimed, attempting to sit up. “Where is the boy?”
“Alive, thanks to you.” Dumbledore motioned forward.
Severus turned to his right slowly, feeling his body groan in protest. Harry was laying in bed, blanket covering up to his chest. Scabbed wounds littered the boy’s pale face. His breathing was shallow and mechanical.
“How is he?” Severus asked, laying back down.
“Still in grave peril. His condition has changed little since he first arrived here. There are some aspects of his injuries that are indeed puzzling. We were hoping that you might be able to shine a light on what happened.”
“I’m…” Severus cleared his throat. “I’m not exactly sure how it went down. The attack at the World Cup was only meant to scare people. For weeks before the attack, Pettigrew had been saying that Voldemort had been speaking to him. He was saying that there was a way to bring him back. Most of those he reached out to dismissed him. When they came back with Harry, Pettigrew revealed that he had gone out of look for the Dark Lord and that he had found him. It only took moments for the most fantatical followers to urge that we use this ritual to bring him back.”
“And he returned. It wasn’t a long set up. They just needed to make sure that the boy would be able to survive the ritual long enough to bring back Voldemort. When he came back...Potter was already severely injured. They tortured him, mercilessly. I did the best I could to make sure that he maintained some sort of sanity. Each death eater got a turn to torture him.”
“And you…?” Dumbledore inquired.
“I had a part to play!” Severus snapped. “I did what I had to in order to rescue the boy!”
“And then he started to smoke.” Severus interrupted. “It was the same thing that happened with the Longbottoms. He began to glow blue and it became an explosive force. I’m not sure how many of them made it out alive. I’m not even sure Voldemort is still alive.”
“It would seem he is given the disappearances that are occuring. The Ministry of Magic is unaware of what caused the destruction at Malfoy Manor but they are curious about the gathering of various dark wizards and known supporters of You-Know-Who.” Dumbledore informed him.
“The incredible power that exploded from Harry, it is a power I have never seen before.”
“It is a rare occurrence called Onero Conrobor. It is something documented as far back as Joan of Arc. It is what happens when one’s magical core becomes overloaded and unstable. It occurs under extreme magical duress. It would seem that Harry has indeed experienced that.”
“What else is known about it?”
“The very few testimonials that we have are not first hand accounts. It seems to be from eye witnesses. At the time, these were not taken as truthful. Those giving the accounts seemed to be of not sound mind or body.”
“What of the magical beings that go through this phenomenon?”
“There is nothing documented. Those few who have studied it seem to be under the same conclusion that there is little chance of survival.”
“What?” Severus asked as he sat up quickly.
The room slanted violently as a wave of nausea swept over Snape. Dumbledore was suddenly standing by the bed.
“Severus please, lay back down.” Dumbledore implored, placing a hand on Snape’s shoulder and applying gentle pressure. “You still have not fully recovered.”
The potioneer laid back down heavily, muscles straining for control over his body. He could feel his muscles shake. His face was damp with sweat.
“Poppy has him under a magical coma. He is being observed around the clock. In the meantime, I will have Poppy bring you a sleeping draught.”
Snape realized he was too weak to argue with the old man. Dumbledore patted Snape’s shoulders reassuringly before walking away. Severus turned to look at Harry, trying to notice changes. Harry had returned to a normal color. His wounds were healing. A door opened and Severus turned slowly to look.
“Poppy.” Severus began
“Your leg has healed nicely but I am placing you on bed rest in the Hospital Wing for the next week. You are not allowed to do any magic, your core is still very weak.”
“Poppy, what about Harry?”
“He has improved since he got here. He is able to tolerate breathing on his own for a few seconds now. His cuts are healing quite nicely. It will be a long road.” She handed Snape a glass. “Drink this.”
Severus took the cup, bringing it to his lips with a shaky hand. The liquid that passed his lips was warm and tasted distinctly of lavender. He handed the cup back to Poppy, feeling his body begin to relax of its own accord.
“Now rest, Severus. Mr.Potter is being cared for diligently.” Poppy said as Severus slipped off to sleep.