Title: The Curse of Midnight Madness
Author: Lokemele
Fandom: Harry Potter
Pairing: Snape/Lupin
Summary: Master and Wolf 3rd Wave challenge # 254) One of the men is under a curse. If he ever falls in love -- really *truly* in love, not just lust or a passing fancy -- then he is doomed to murder his lover on the stroke of midnight on their first anniversary.
Archive: Master and Wolf Archive *only* until after the 3rd Wave is concluded.
Rating: NC-17
Status: Complete
Series/Sequel: None
Beta: Nikki
Disclaimer: J. K. Rowlings owns the Potterverse. I'm playing in her sandbox without her permission, and hope she understands I mean no harm and make no claims on her copyright.
Authors Notes & Warnings: m/m, m/f (non-graphic), Death fic, sort of. To say more would spoil it.

He hadn't meant to fall in love. He'd never meant to fall in love again, resigning himself to a solitary life in the dungeons with only his potions for company.

Then that bastard Lupin had to come to the Yule Ball, knowing Snape was required to put in an appearance as Head of Slytherin. Of course he just *had* to wear those robes: wine-dark, perfectly tailored, trimmed in Gryffindor gold, so beautiful, so tempting.

And to top it all off, the werewolf had lured him into a dark corner and pounced, trapping him with his body as his mouth did unspeakably wonderful things to his lips, ears and neck. He'd barely managed to push the other man away long enough to escape to his dungeons.

All for naught, as Severus Snape knew his heart was lost, and Remus Lupin was doomed to die in a year's time, by his hand.

He gazed down into the firewhiskey he held between his hands and remembered . . .

He had met her at the start of his sixth year. Her name was Ariana Owen, she had transferred to Hogwarts from Beauxbatons, and the Sorting Hat had placed her into Ravenclaw. She was fire and light and brilliance, and determined to bring those qualities to his cold, dark world.

He had loved her immediately, and had fought it as hard as he could, knowing all too well how painful love could be. He also suspected a trap set by either the Marauders or her fellow Ravenclaws. But she persisted, and by mid-November had broken through his resistance. He had allowed her close, and when the suspected trap failed to materialize, fell with a totality only those deprived of other love could achieve.

It had felt natural to invite her to his family's home for the Yuletide holidays, and she had smiled and accepted. He had planned to propose on Christmas Eve, once his family had met her and seen what a wonderful person she was.

What he hadn't known jumped up and smacked him in the face two days after they'd arrived at Snape Manor.

His father had started one of his rants at dinner that night, his vitriol directed at how only Purebloods deserved schooling in magic, and Muggle-borns and half-bloods were wasting teachers' valuable time and resources. Those inferior creatures would begin to believe they were as good as Purebloods, and start demanding equal treatment -- why, they might even think they could marry into proper Wizarding families and pollute ancient bloodlines.

Ariana had sat through the diatribe like a zombie, growing paler with each sentence, until she could tolerate no more. She'd stood up and tossed her napkin into her uneaten meal, announced her mother had been Muggle-born, and fled the table.

Before Severus could follow his father had warned, "Remove that creature from this house *tonight* or she dies. If I hear of you having anything to do with her when you return to school, she'll suffer the same fate -- and I do mean *suffer*."

So he'd run up to her room and repeated what his father said as he'd helped her pack, got her outside where he could flag down the Knight Bus, and paid her fare back to Hogsmeade. He had every intention of following the next day, but his father had other plans, and had kept his heir close for the rest of the holiday.

Headmaster Albus Dumbledore had met him at the castle doors when he'd returned, and escorted Severus to his office, warning off anyone attempting to speak to the student. Once the two were alone, the older man had asked, "How well did you know a student by the name of Ariana Owen?"

"We were quite close," he'd replied, "until she told my father she was a half-blood, and he forbade me to have anything more to do with her or he'd kill her."

"I see. Then you don't know." The Headmaster had closed his eyes, and when he opened them again they were filled with sorrow. He'd drawn the younger man to a chair and sat beside him, rather than behind his desk. "Miss Owen's body was found on the lake shore a week ago, drowned, apparently by her own hand."

Severus had shaken his head, denying the words. "No. No! I want to see her!" He'd jumped up and tried to leave the office, but Dumbledore had grabbed him, explaining she was already gone; her body had been returned to her parents in Wales for burial. He'd fought to get away, and then broken down, sobbing against the Headmaster's shoulder.

After he'd gotten the younger man calmed down somewhat, Dumbledore had continued, "She left two letters on her bed: a sheet of folded parchment telling about the last evening she'd spent at your family home and how you'd sent her away, and explaining how she couldn't bear to go on living without your love, and a sealed envelope with your name on it." He'd gone over to the desk and withdrawn the envelope from one of his desk drawers and handed it to Severus.

"I've no doubt you wish to read this in private," he'd said. "I have another matter which needs my attention. Take whatever time here you need."

He'd then left the younger man alone in his office with a letter from his dead love.

Severus turned the letter over in his hands several before deciding to open it. He finally broke the wax sealing the envelope.

A strange tingling sensation crawled across his skin and sunk into his flesh as the seal broke. He frowned at the sensation, but drew out the letter within. He unfolded it and read:

"My Dearest Darling (Severus flinched; it was always trouble when she spoke sweetly),

If you're reading this I'm dead. Why didn't you follow, as you promised? Or respond to my owls? Is it possible you agree with your father? I have decided you do, and have finagled permission to search the Restricted Section. I was supposed to be researching something else, but I sought out curses, and found one perfect for a faithless lover. You activated it when you broke the seal on the envelope. I shan't tell you what it does; I leave you to learn for yourself, you faithless wretch.

Why should another suffer your fecklessness as I have? Take this knowledge, along with what your betrayal has done, with you for the rest of your miserable life.

Yours Forever in Hate,

Ariana Owen"

He dropped to the floor and curled into a ball of pain. "Oh, Ariana, you've no idea," he sobbed, and hissed in pain at his bruised ribs. They were among the souvenirs of his holiday, the result of arguments which after escalating into screaming matches often finished with physical violence. "I fought for you, in my own way. He wouldn't let me leave. I never received your owls. I'm so very, very, sorry."

Dumbledore found him in that position when he returned to his office. The Headmaster asked about the letter, but Severus refused to discuss it. He simply pulled himself up and, after asking permission to be dismissed and receiving it, left the office and went to the Slytherin Tower.

Spring brought the incident in the Shrieking Shack, and Dumbledore's betrayal. Summer was spent with his new friend Lucius at Malfoy Manor, where he was introduced to Lord Voldemort.

On Halloween of that year Severus Snape held out his left arm and received the Dark Lord's mark. He made his first kill over the Christmas Holiday; his first several, in fact.

That New Year's Eve he Apparated to the edge of Malfoy Manor's wards, walked to the door and knocked. A house elf answered and took his cloak; another appeared and offered him a tray of champagne glasses, from which he made a selection. He entered the main ballroom and saw Lucius standing next to someone he didn't know, but vowed to become very close to before midnight.

"Happy New Year, Lucius," he said in greeting to his host, "and who's this?" He smiled at the charming stranger.

"Michel Reynard, meet Severus Snape," Lucius said. "Michel has just arrived from Paris, to update Lord Voldemort on how efforts are going on the Continent."

"You're just visiting, then," Snape said. He wondered if his father would allow him to travel to France as a graduation gift.

"Not entirely," the Frenchman said, returning Snape's smile. "I am -- how you say? -- at loose ends. I might stay on, if something interests me."

Snape thought he, and probably half the room, would like to find something to interest the slender blond with the pale good looks and medium height. Still, it was to him the Frenchman returned throughout the evening, and at midnight they shared a kiss.

A kiss which sealed Reynard's fate, for in that moment Snape fell in love with him.


It was a good year for Severus -- possibly the best year of his life.

February brought a Hogsmeade Weekend just before Valentine's Day, and he found Michel at the Three Broomsticks waiting for him. They drank a couple of butterbeers apiece before leaving together and walking to a nearby boarding house where the Frenchman had taken a room.

Once inside the room, and guarded by lock and ward, Michel turned and asked, "Do you want your Valentine's gift early, or do you want to wait?"

"I'm here, and you've guaranteed privacy," Severus answered huskily. "I think now would be a good time."

"You're so impatient."

"I've been waiting over a month."

Though the two had met clandestinely several times since New Year's, they'd never done more than give each other hand jobs, and Michel had promised they would 'go all the way' soon. As Severus began to disrobe he was stopped by Michel's hands. "Non, mon cher -- allow me."

The older man drew Severus over to the bed and slowly undressed him, pausing to touch, caress, fondle, kiss, lick, nibble and tease the younger man into a near frenzy of desire by the time he was completely disrobed. He pushed him down onto the bed and gave him a long, deep kiss before pulling back and disrobing with a quick spell.

Michel took his time with Severus, knowing the younger man was a virgin as far as it came to intercourse with either gender. He gave the other man a blow job to show how it was done and how good it felt, then allowed Severus to try it on him, and was pleased when the younger man attempted to swallow his seed, even though he couldn't quite manage it. "It just takes practice, mon amor," he murmured, "you'll do better next time."

He began caressing Severus once more, this time fondling his ass and running his fingers between his cheeks. He asked the younger man to roll over onto his knees and elbows, and then called a jar of ointment to him from the bedside table where he'd left it earlier that morning. Michel drew out a fingerful and rubbed it over Severus' hole, slowly working his finger past the muscles. "Am I hurting you?" he asked.

"No, it just feels . . . odd."

"I'm going to use two fingers now, and press deeper. Tell me if you want me to stop; we don't have to do anything if it hurts."

Michel lubed up two fingers, slowly pressing deeper until he heard Severus gasp. "Hurt?"

"No, it felt kinda good."

"OK, three fingers now, and you should be ready for the real thing."

By this time Severus was half hard and beginning to push against the fingers inside him. He cried out softly as the fingers were withdrawn, then hissed in discomfort as the head of Michel's penis breached his opening. The older man paused and asked, "Should I pull out? Does it hurt too much?"

"It's all right," the other man said, "Keep going; I've been waiting for this all year."

Michel chuckled and pushed deeper, slowly filling Severus with his member. He had to stop for a moment once he'd fully entered the oh-so-tight passage; he wanted to make it last so his lover would fully enjoy his first time. He moved slowly at first until Severus' shouts let him know he was hitting the younger man's prostate, speeding up and reaching down to stimulate his lover to a screaming climax. The clenching of Severus' passage drew Michel's orgasm from him, and his shout of completion swiftly followed the other man's.

The older man held still until his penis grew too soft to remain inside his lover, and then rolled to one side and pulled Severus into his arms, calling his wand and spelling them clean. They cuddled together and fell asleep, waking later to make love once more before Severus returned to Hogwarts.


Snape was called to the Headmaster's office just as he was finishing his final NEWT exam. He completed the last question and followed the prefect to the gargoyle, riding the moving staircase alone after the prefect had given the password. He worried as he went upward. Had Dumbledore somehow discovered he was a Death Eater? Was he going to be turned over to the Ministry? He was so very close to leaving this wretched place forever, and making his own mark on the world. It just wasn't fair!

Dumbledore's grave face seemed to confirm his worst fears, and he all but confessed as he was offered tea and lemon drops and waved into a chair.

"I'm afraid I have some very bad news, Severus. I've just received an owl from the Ministry; your father was found dead early this morning, apparently from natural causes. Since you've finished the last of your NEWTs, you may leave as soon as you wish to make arrangements for your father's funeral and settle the estate."

He nodded gravely and allowed the Headmaster to pat his hand and make sympathetic noises before asking permission to go and pack. He didn't fully relax until he was back in his dorm room. His secret was intact, and he would soon be safely away from Hogwarts and able to spend nearly all his time with Michel! He'd have to deal with his father's solicitor and see how cheaply he could get away with burying the old horror. He wondered how much he'd have left over after death duties and his father's debts were paid. He packed quickly, remembering to adjust his face to a properly grief-stricken expression before leaving his room for the final time.

A carriage awaited him at the school gates, and he was swiftly taken to the train station. He boarded the Express and was pleasantly surprised to discover he would have company on the long journey; Michel had been going to London on business, but changed his plans when he heard of Severus' loss. "My condolences on your loss, mon cher," he said.

"It's not that great a loss," the other man said. "We were never close after Mother died, and stopped speaking to each other a couple years ago. I hope I can manage to look like I'm mourning until after the funeral, at least."

"Allow me to comfort you, then," Michel said as he locked the compartment door and drew down the shades.

The next six months were busy for Severus, with Death Eater assignments and establishing himself in the Wizarding world. He was often with his lover, both secretly and socially, and more than one female despaired at his obvious preference.

The seasons passed, and the year neared its end once more. They'd exchanged gifts on Christmas; Michel had given him a gorgeous black velvet robe with an equally black silk lining and specially spelled pockets, and in return Severus had presented his lover with the newest in racing broomsticks, having discovered the other man's passion for flying. They were looking forward to New Year's Eve at Malfoy Manor.

They never made it to the party. Voldemort himself stopped by Snape Manor with an assignment for the pair: they were to eliminate a reporter for the Daily Prophet who'd written several articles denouncing both the Dark Lord and his followers, and his wife and children as well. They arrived at the place the family had hidden just before midnight, and were making swift work of them as midnight came -- and Ariana's curse fell.

Severus had just sent an Avada Kedavra at what he thought was the last of the family when he saw, to his horror, he'd hit his beloved Michel. He'd howled out "NOOOO!" even as the green light briefly illuminated his lover's features and life faded from his eyes. He launched the Morsmordre, snatched up Michel, and Apparated away.

Even as he was moving, he thought he could hear familiar laughter, and a bittersweet feminine voice call out, "Now you know, oh faithless lover!"

It wasn't until just after Michel had been buried that he recalled Ariana and the curse she'd placed upon him. He spent weeks researching in the Snape family library before coming across the spell he thought she might have used. He cursed as he read it; there was no known counterspell. He asked the Dark Lord about aiding him with the curse and was soundly rebuked for his selfishness, which left him with only one place to turn.

He went to Dumbledore and confessed all, expecting to be given over to Hit Wizards and carried off to Azkaban. He wondered how the curse would work there.

But the Headmaster didn't call in the Ministry of Magic; instead, he asked Severus if he cared to atone for his past deeds and work towards earning the older wizard's aid in breaking the curse by spying on the Dark Lord.

Severus agreed, and was given the position of Assistant to the Potions Master to explain his presence at Hogwarts. Two months before Voldemort's defeat at Godric's Hollow, he was made Potions Master in his own right.

Twelve years later Remus Lupin reentered his life as the Defense Against the Dark Arts instructor at Hogwarts. Though he left the following spring after having been revealed as a werewolf, he was rehired three years later due to the lack of other candidates. It appeared word had been spread the DADA position was cursed, and nobody else wanted the job.

Now Severus had gone and fallen in love with the man. Maybe the rumors were right, and the DADA position *was* cursed. He finished his firewhiskey and left his quarters, knowing what he had to do.

He needed to make one stop first, however, and made his way to the Headmaster's office to speak with Dumbledore.

The old wizard was, surprisingly, in his office, even though the ball was still going full swing in the Great Hall. He offered Severus tea and lemon drops; the tea was accepted while the candy was refused. The Potions Master got straight to the point.

"I'll be leaving Hogwarts at the end of the year," he said. "I'll be leaving Britain as well, for Australia, or possibly one of the Americas."

"Because of Remus?" Dumbledore asked. At Severus' nod, he warned, "It won't help; the curse will draw you back, whether you will or no."

"It can't draw back a corpse, can it?"

The older man was shocked at younger man's suggestion, and rounded his desk to sit next to him. Taking the Potions Master's hand in both of his, he said, "My dear boy, you mustn't despair; we may yet find a way to break the curse. I'm spending every spare moment I can on it, and I've recruited Miss Granger as well --"

"You *didn't* tell her it was for me, did you?" Severus wasn't about to start trusting Gryffindors indiscriminately.

"Not at all, dear boy; I wouldn't be that indiscreet. I simply showed her the curse and made it an academic problem. If there's anyone who will devote herself to a problem with the tenacity of a hippogriff on the hunt, it's Miss Granger."

In the end Severus agreed not to do anything drastic until next December, and bid the Headmaster goodnight before leaving the office.

Lost in thought, he quite literally ran into Remus in the hall outside the office.

"I was hoping to catch you," the werewolf said with a lecherous gleam in his eye.

Severus sighed and decided he needed to make a clean breast of things. "I need to tell you something before we do anything else; something vital to your health."

Seeing how serious the other man was, Remus sobered. "My office is just down the hall; we can go there."

Once they'd arrived at the werewolf's office and Remus had offered Severus firewhiskey, he asked, "What is it you need to tell me that's so vital to my health?"

Severus spent the next little while explaining in as much detail as he could about the curse and advising Remus to take whatever steps necessary -- including killing the Potions Master if he looked as if he might be about to attack.

Remus listened solemnly to the other man's story, and at the end he said, "Severus, I may not have a year. You know as well as I do the lycanthropy is slowly killing me, and I could be killed any time I'm in my wolf form." He walked over to the other man and put his arms around his waist. "For now, let's just use what time we have to its best advantage." He pulled Severus close and covered the Potions Master's lips with his own.

Severus pushed him away. "Haven't you heard a word I've said?"

"I've been under a death sentence since I was nine years old. I can't afford to sit back and let life pass by anymore."

Severus capitulated. "Very well," he said, "but with conditions."

"What conditions?"

"That if the curse isn't broken by Christmas Eve, you won't stop me from taking my own life before I take yours."

Remus agreed, and the two men left the werewolf's office for his quarters.

Once the door was locked and warded, the two men made their way to the bedroom, shedding clothing, kissing, caressing, and nibbling each other as they went. As they neared the bed, naked and rampantly erect, Severus paused, a look of doubt on his face.

"What is it, love?" asked Remus.

The other man stared at the bed, unable to face his potential lover, and tried to articulate his thoughts. "I haven't . . . not since I discovered the curse . . . I didn't dare . . . what if I'd . . . I couldn't risk . . ."

The werewolf put a hand under his jaw and turned his face away from the bed. "Severus." He kissed the other man. "It will be all right." Another kiss. "Trust me." He pulled his soon-to-be lover close. "Relax now, and let me pleasure you."

They sat down together on the bed, and Remus gently pushed him down, kissing and fondling the other man's body. It wasn't long before Severus was responding to the other man's attentions, and soon gave as good as he got. They writhed together, touching, kissing and rubbing.

"God, Remus, fuck me!" Severus moaned.

The werewolf quickly grabbed lube from the bedside table where he'd been keeping it in hopes of just such a request, but took his time preparing his lover for penetration, much to said lover's displeasure. He suddenly found himself beneath an impatient Severus, who snarled "Now!" as he impaled himself on Remus' achingly hard cock.

The Potions Master stilled for a moment when he'd completely filled himself with erect flesh, panting heavily as his body adjusted to the welcome invasion. He began to move, slowly at first but quickly picking up speed. Remus grabbed his hips and thrust upward, picking up the rhythm and moving with his lover. Severus bent down and captured the other man's lips, his tongue thrusting into his lover's mouth at the same pace as his hips rode his lover's cock. He reached down for his own aching cock, only to have his hand brushed away by his lover, who wrapped his hand around it and began to jerk it, crooning encouragement to the man above him.

"Come for me, Severus! Let me hear you howl!"

As if on command, Severus did just that, arching his back, screaming his completion, and spraying Remus and the bed with bursts of semen. The spasms of his orgasm sent his lover over the edge, and the werewolf's howls joined the Potions Master's.

Afterward, as they lay cuddled together after cleaning themselves and the bed, Severus lay awake and wondered if this was for the best in the long run.


The year passed swiftly as the war heated up and the Order became more active in its campaign against the Dark Lord. September saw a new year at Hogwarts, and new students as well. Everyone knew Hermione Granger was working on some special project for the Headmaster, but among the students only her closest friends, Harry Potter and Ron Weasley, had any idea what it was.

One morning in mid-October she was listening to a conversation between some of the younger Muggle-born students prompted by an accident during the Care of Magical Creatures class, when something one of them said caused her to suddenly jump to her feet, shout out "That's it!", and dash from the room.

She was later seen in the Medical Wing consulting with both Madam Pomfrey and Headmaster Dumbledore, and afterward in the Library, consulting Healing texts.

The approach of the Yuletide holidays saw a marked change in Severus Snape: he was exceptionally nasty in class, absolutely vicious during detentions, and completely absent for meals. Even his own Slytherins weren't exempt from the sharpness of his tongue, and many students were more than happy to escape Hogwarts for the holiday.

Oddly enough, Hermione Granger wasn't going home for the holidays this year, and rumor had it she was spending an extraordinary amount of time with the DADA teacher.

Christmas morning dawned clear and exceptionally cold, exactly matching the mood of Severus Snape. He'd driven his lover away the night before, accusing him of betraying his promise of the year before. Remus had replied a way to break the curse had been found and it wasn't necessary for Remus to kill him. Severus had demanded details which his lover had refused to give, saying it might ruin the breaking of the curse and didn't Severus trust him anymore?

The lovers had ended up in a screaming match in the hallway outside the Great Hall, witnessed by nearly everyone who had remained at Hogwarts for the holiday.

Snape had spent the day in his chambers, trying not to think of midnight, attempting to distract himself with various activities. Reading, taking inventory of potion supplies, and going over student essays did nothing to help, and attempts at potion making were worse disasters than anything produced by Neville Longbottom.

The topper came just after the evening meal, when Dumbledore dropped by to remind him his presence was required at the Yule Ball. He spent the next hour cursing everything he could think of while readying himself.

He swept into the Great Hall at the appointed time, his formal robes of Slytherin green trimmed with silver snakes swirling around him, his glare warning all to keep their distance. Students and staff were more than happy to avoid the man, though Remus looked as if he might approach until stopped by Dumbledore's hand on his arm.

The night passed, and as midnight approached Severus became more frantic as he saw nothing that might prevent the curse from falling. Just before the hour struck he saw Remus leaving the hall; curiosity, and perhaps something more, prompted him to follow the werewolf into the frigid night.

He didn't notice he was, in turn, followed.

"Where in Merlin's name is that idiot werewolf going at his time of night, and in this weather?" murmured Severus to himself. "He can't possibly be headed for the lake!"

But it appeared that was Remus' very destination, and Severus picked up his pace, hoping to catch the man before he arrived.

He was too late; by the time he caught up to his lover, the other man was already knee-deep in the water.

Midnight struck, and so did Severus, knocking Remus from his feet and pushing his head beneath the water.

He didn't let go until the werewolf had stopped fighting and the last bubble of air had left his lungs.

The next thing he knew the Headmaster had pulled Remus' lifeless form from his grasp and floated it above the water to the group waiting on the shore.

"WHY?!?!?" he howled at Dumbledore. "You knew this would happen, and did nothing to stop it!"

"Remus had to die in order to break the curse," the Headmaster said, "but Miss Granger has worked out a way around it. Come out of the water now, Severus, before the both of us catch our death of the cold."

"He's DEAD, you old fool! Why should I care if I die as well?" Severus said, throwing himself into the water.

His intention to drown was quickly thwarted by Dumbledore casting Stupefy and Hagrid snatching him up bodily and carrying him out of the lake.

Hagrid, Snape, and Dumbledore were quickly dried and wrapped in warm blankets by Professor McGonagall, and the group headed back to the castle.


Severus Snape awoke in the Medical Wing, with a smiling Dumbledore leaning over him. "Before you start snarling, there are a few things I need to tell you."

"What could you possibly say that will change the fact that Remus is DEAD?"

"That I'm not?" croaked a voice from the next bed.

Severus sat up so quickly he was momentarily dizzy. "REMUS!" he shouted. "But--but-- you're dead! I drowned you in the lake!"

"You did indeed drown him in the lake, and as Madam Pomfrey will attest, he was quite dead when I floated his body to her and Miss Granger," the Headmaster said.

"Then how is it he's alive now?" Severus asked.

"A combination of Wizard and Muggle medical techniques. Muggles have discovered, through rescuing people who have drowned in very cold water, that the cold will preserve the brain for exceptionally longer than a person drowned in warmer water -- they call it 'cold and dead versus warm and dead'. They discovered a person can be resuscitated with no ill effect even if they've been 'dead' for as much as 20 minutes."

"It was a conversation last October which gave me the idea," Hermione said, coming over to stand between the two beds. "Some of the Muggle-born students were discussing an accident which happened in Hagrid's class -- they'd been down by the lake observing the giant squid, and one of the students fell in the lake and was promptly rescued by the squid. Some of the students were remarking how lucky he was, and one happened to mention a cousin who'd drowned after falling through the ice in a pond and how the rescuers were able to resuscitate him even though he'd stopped breathing and had no heartbeat. That's when it hit me -- we could let you drown Professor Lupin in the lake, and because it's so very cold, we could let him 'die' and then revive him, thus breaking the curse. You killed him, but not permanently." She smiled, quite pleased with herself."

"Then it's over," Severus said, looking at his no-longer-dead lover. "The curse is broken."

"The curse is broken," said Madam Pomfrey, "but you still need to rest." She promptly chased out everyone who wasn't in a bed, leaving Remus and Severus alone.

"I'm sorry; I should have trusted you," said the Potions Master.

"It's all right, my love; we have time, now, and if we both survive this war you might yet find a cure for me," Remus replied.

"I love you."

"And I love you. Isn't it wonderful?"

Severus Snape had to agree it was, in fact, very wonderful.

The End