Nobody ever asked my birthday

Repeat that back

Bad Enough, Harry thought, that he'd skipped potions class.

Now it was nearly time for Defense, and that was not going to go well, now, was it?

Not when your teacher was rightly, and thoroughly torqued at you.

No...

Harry very, very much didn't want to have to wake up and face the music. But, he thought with a sigh, he might as well enjoy the performance. Snape in a temper was like a force of nature. And, Harry resolved, this time he knew he was in the wrong. It had to be better, like that, right? Harry wouldn't have to struggle with strangling the man.

See? Harry knew he had a problem with his temper.

It was just, often, with Snape, it was hard to care. The tall man sneered, and insulted, and poked and prodded - and finally, Harry had enough.

That wouldn't have been much of a problem, Harry thought with a sigh, if it was only the once. No, Snape had to pick on him every damn class - no, that wasn't strictly true, Harry thought back. He probably only picked on me during the easier classes, saving Supervising Longbottom as his primary occupation otherwise.

JC on a cracker! Harry thought, Transfiguration! He sat there on the Defense Room floor, pulling books out of his bag.

Everyone else was still at lunch. If this kept up, someone might mistake him for being studious.

"Studying something other than your next class, Potter?" Snape sneered.

"Yes, I've finished your homework, and I haven't finished my Apprenticeship homework, which is far more demanding than regular classes." Potter said back, not quite listening to himself talk.

"Repeat that back," Snape said in a low voice.

Harry started to, and then stopped. "Err..."

"I do believe such insolence calls for more homework assignments." Snape said firmly.

It was at about that point that Harry realized that no one else was in the room with them, because Snape properly gave detentions for cheek, and not Homework Assignments of Doom. Harry figured those were worse, anyhow.

"Yessir?" Harry responded, trying to both use the honorific and have it be incomprehensible to anyone other than the two of them. It worked - partially speaking. Harry figured there was fair odds that it wasn't comprehensible to either of them either.

"Triple the assigned length of your homework assignment." Snape started, "And stay sharp." Without waiting for an acknowledgement, Snape went to the podium, and promptly vanished. Snape never did like to arrive before the students did. Probably thought waiting wasted his time.

Come to think of it... Snape being here early meant Snape was doing things...

Harry quietly closed his eyes, remembering some of the Transfiguration homework he was supposed to be doing.

... Yes, he could hear metal, squeaking.

It was invisible, of course, but it was still metal, and moving metal made sounds.

Harry was finding this a much more effective learning assignment than prescribed by the textbook.

He pulled out a bit of parchment, and started to draw.

[a/n: What's Snape up to? What's harry up to? Review, and find out!

This is not really a "Help Harry Out" plot. Snape's busy working on his prep for class.]