Nobody ever asked my birthday

Chapter 33

Snape dropped (okay, flung) the potion to the floor at his feet, the blue-purple smoke writhing out like snakes. Then he swished his wand, flinging it into the wards.

Harry Potter dropped to the floor, trying to avoid the potion. Who knew what Snape's idea of a potion to use in the middle of battle was?

Harry was mentally reviewing everything he knew about potions (a lot) and everything he knew about using them in battle (absolutely nothing). Better safe than sorry, Harry told himself. "Treat it as if it's Longbottom's latest exploded cauldron disaster."

Harry was holding his breath, trying to see if any nearby surfaces were dissolving, or sparkling, or anything that might give a clue as to what Snape had done.

Dryly, Snape said, "Thirty seconds, Mister Potter."

Harry peeked out, one green eye showing from underneath his shaggy hair (which was in his face, again). Snape wasn't smirking. Shite, this was bad.

Well, doing nothing was the lamest way to lose a battle, Harry Potter thought, so he started spelling - It was an obscure spell, and he hoped Snape didn't know the counter. Hermione had found it (of course), and it was brilliant.

In this case, Harry meant that literally. In moments, the room was entirely coated in rainbow colors - and worse, they were moving, dancing. Hermione had called it a magical disco ball... As Harry had said at the time, brilliant.

"Fifteen seconds, Mister Potter."

Harry pooled his magic, starting to change, willing the room's surfaces to transfigure as they colored with the light. White for ice, red for fire, green for acid, blue for water, yellow for shock.

"Ten seconds, Mister Potter." Snape's robes billowed as he loped, springing towards Potter.

Harry looked up, despite his spellwork, ducking quickly to hopefully avoid whatever Snape planned to do. For just as Harry had been going full tilt against Snape, here Snape was plummeting straight at Harry, his face a mask of fury.

Snape crouched right below Potter (quite a feat, considering that Snape was the larger man, and far more lanky), his fist at Potter's chest, clutching at his robes. Snape's other wrist was on Potter's throat, as he channeled the momentum into slamming Potter against the wall.

"One." Snape's low tone whispered from five inches away from Potter's face. Harry was still trying to figure out what exactly was going on...

"Now," Snape said in a voice softer than a whisper, barely a breath. Harry dropped five good inches, as Snape released his fist from Potter's robes.

Harry was choking - the only thing keeping him off the floor was Snape's wrist his neck. I know this! Harry thought suddenly, his arm grabbing Snape's, and his whole body rotating, his leg kicking out to land on Snape's belly - off a little, his foot landing on Snape's groin instead. Still, Snape's arm went slack, and that was good, as Harry's vision was starting to go (nothing new there, Uncle Vernon had taught him plenty about slowly reaching unconsciousness). Harry rolled away, launching a stunner at Snape's even paler than usual face.

Snape blocked it almost casually, casting a "Finite incantum" to rid the room of the colors (Harry was actually glad, as that fire really hurt, even if it wasn't actually smoking anything.)

In the ensuing pause, Harry swore he heard Ginny saying, "I told you he was a vampire!" Maybe that had been George, throwing his voice again... Ron chimed in, "Nothing but a Vampire moves that fast." Hermione, bless her soul, was saying, "I don't think it works like that guys..." And Fred was saying, thoughtfully, "I want that potion." Meanwhile, from behind the Queen Anne chair, Harry almost swore that Moody's eye glimmered approving. Which was ridiculous, as Moody wouldn't have approved of Snape bowing to the Queen of England.

[a/n: Yes, moody doesn't work well with Snape. Harry doesn't realize that both of them consider this more of a feature than a bug.

Have you figured out what Snape did yet?

The potion's called freeze frame - it clones the light leaving the wards. To the more credulous (and lacking of a good internal clock) it looked like Snape teleported across the room.

Moody, of course, being the paranoid git he generally is, recognized the potion.

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