Nobody ever asked my birthday


[a/n: second post of the day]

Snape wasn't at breakfast on Saturday morning, not that Harry was surprised, by now. Still it set his nerves on edge, just the wondering. Would he come back? He seemed so... sapped, as if a leech was pulling the life force out of him... Harry tried to reassure himself that Snape knows what he's doing, but Harry had never been able to tell himself that Dumbledore knew what he was doing, let alone Snape.

True to form, if not reality, Draco Malfoy appeared at the Gryffindor table near the end of breakfast. A hush had fallen over the Gryffindor table, and rapidly spread to the others. It wasn't that people had stopped talking, but the volume had dropped to 30%, as everyone echoed their neighbors like sheep.

"Looking forward to your detention today, crybaby?" Draco Malfoy sneered.

Harry sucked in a sharp breath, felt his nails cut into his palms. He doesn't meant it. You know that. Harry looked up at Draco Malfoy, and abruptly determined he wasn't going to be shorter in this encounter. Harry got slowly to his feet, a dark glower imprinted on his ruddy face. An idea broke through Harry's anger - this is an opportunity, don't waste it.

Draco Malfoy seemed to pale at that malevolent sparkle in Potter's eyes. He was too prideful to turn tail and run, simply standing there, expressionless except for the belated vestige of a sneer.

"Have you really shed no tears, Mister Malfoy?" Harry Potter said gravely, "Count yourself lucky, then, and fortunate to boot. Then again, your imprisoned father made it out of Azkaban, didn't he? Not everyone who leaves that place isn't mad, you know."

Harry saw the answering gleam in Draco Malfoy's face, because of course he knew.

"You'll find that your aunt, Bellatrix Black, has painted quite a target on her back. You may not be crying, yet."

Harry heard, almost as an undertone, Malfoy's comment, "No one would grieve her."

"It's war. Death follows like a sunny day after rain, giving the dying peace. It's the living that walk unquietly, in their unseemly grief." Harry Potter's green eyes looked coldly on Malfoy's. "Have a care who you insult when you mock my tears." Harry's eyes sought, and found, Hannah Abbot's, her Hufflepuff blue eyes big and wet with tears.

By the time Harry had turned back, Malfoy had left, leaving a swelling silence in his wake.

[a/n: the unquiet grave is a traditional song. Ginny and Luna like to sing it. Leave reviews?]