Another Type Of Hell
by MelWil

There were plenty of people Tonks would have expected to see if she woke up in a hospital. Her father, one of the members of the Order, some of her fellow aurors. Hell, maybe even a good looking healer, one who'd fallen madly in love with her while she was unconscious and who now wanted to elope with her, and take her away to some exotic, deserted island.

She never, not in her wildest dreams, expected to see Severus Snape.

"Bugger." Her throat was scratchy and sore and her head was pounding. "I know I've been a bit of a bother at times, but I didn't think I was bad enough to end up in hell."

Snape handed her a glass of water and a small vial of potion. "I assure you, Miss Tonks, you have not gone to hell. Hell would, quite possibly, be more pleasant than this."

"I'm in St Mungo's?"


"And what are you doing here?" Tonks rubbed at her head.

Snape pointed at the vial of potion in her hand and watched as she swallowed it. "I was the only member of the Order free to watch over you."

"What about Remus? Or Molly? Couldn't they have been here?"

Snape's face twisted. "Am I really that detestable?"

"No," Tonks spoke automatically, realising how bad her words must have sounded. "I just didn't expect to see you."

"Molly Weasley is at Hogwarts, seeing to her youngest children. Remus is . . . not available right now."

"So they sent you?"

"The Headmaster sent me. He thought you might like to see a familiar face when you woke up." Snape snorted.

"I'm sorry for taking up your time," Tonks said primly. "How long have I been asleep, anyway?"

Snape looked at the clock on the wall. "One day, five hours and thirteen minutes. The healers were worried. Most people manage to wake up earlier. I tried to tell them you were always a bit backwards."

Tonks shook her head. "Why are you here?"

"I am here on Albus' orders." Snape looked away. "He didn't want to lose anyone else."

Tonks' throat tightened. "We lost someone."

"Black." Snape couldn't help himself, she noticed. He still spat Sirius' name out like it was a vomit flavoured every flavour bean.

She felt the tears pricking at her eyes and turned her head away from him. He would mock her if she cried. "Harry?"

"He's back at Hogwarts. Unharmed. The other students made it back as well." Snape's voice lowered, as if he was talking to himself. "The repercussions will be long lasting."

"Why are you here?" Tonks couldn't help herself. She just couldn't believe that Snape would be here on anyone's orders, that he would sit calmly by her bedside without argument, without protest. Something else must have happened.

"How many times must I repeat myself, Miss Tonks?" He was sneering at her.

"I don't believe you." She turned to look at him. "You wouldn't sit so calmly if you didn't want to be here."

"Just because the Headmaster asked me to come, doesn't mean I don't wish to be here. I don't disagree with all Albus says."

"You're here because you want to be here?" Tonks let a smile grow across her face.

Severus glared at her. "The healers insisted you rest. I must agree with them."

She grinned at him. "Yes, Professor."

He stood as if to go and looked down at her. He looked uncomfortable, uncertain. "I'm . . . glad you're well."

She grabbed his hand and squeezed it quickly. "Thank you, Severus."


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