The Silent Observer

Chapter 2: Professor Snape

The Great Hall was quiet enough to hear a pin drop. The majority of the students sat in stunned silence and the Staff Table was in whispered disarray. Harry Potter in Slytherin was an outcome that no one had guessed. Slowly Harry got down from the stool and made his way over to his new House table. No one was clapping for him as they had done for previous students, and Harry kept his head down fearful that he had already done something wrong. After a few more moments the Headmaster cleared his throat and the Sorting resumed.

"So, the famous Harry Potter comes to Slytherin," sneered Draco Malfoy. "I bet you regret denying my friendship now."

Harry looked at the haughty little blond for a moment before once again dropping his eyes. "What's the matter Potter? Cat got your tounge?" Malfoy sneered again.

Harry simply shook his head, unable to tell this boy that as much as he wanted to introduce himself, he couldn't.

"He probably thinks he's too good to speak to us," said Pansy Parkinson in a condescending manner, staring sweetly at Draco. "He obviously has no taste if he denied your friendship Draco."

Harry was miserable. He was already making the wrong impression, and there was nothing he could do to correct it. Try as he might he simply couldn't figure out a way to tell these people he could not speak.

Soon enough the sorting had concluded and the students of Hogwarts were well fed and dismissed to their appropriate houses with the first years being lead through the hallways by their respective Prefects. Upon entering Slytherin House Harry and his classmates were lined up against the wall of their common room and introduced to their Head of House. Severus Snape came stalking in like the Bat of the Dungeons that he was. Looking over the motley crew of first years his gazed lingered moments longer on the would-be 'saviour of the wizarding world'. How the brat ended up in his house he would never know, but Dumbledore had assured him that the hat NEVER made mistakes.

"Thank you Mr. Flint," he said dismissing his Prefect.

Turning to his new students he glared at them each in turn before beginning his own welcoming speech.

"I am your Head of House, Professor Snape. I am also your Potions Professor. I warn you now that I will tolerate no foolishness or pettiness within my house. If any of my house members has a problem with one another, it will be addressed within the walls of this room, or in my office. Outside of our rooms we shall present a united front. I do not tolerate bullies, and I will not molly coddle any of you. If you miss Mummy and Daddy, take it up with someone else." Snape paused and looked scathingly at Harry. He almost felt sorry for him…almost. "As policy, I shall require each of you to present a sample of blood for testing and logging, and each of you shall submit to a physical exam. You may choose between myself or Madam Pompfrey, I care not, but know that you have exactly one week to comply or I will forcefully exam you myself WHILE you serve detention. Is that clear?"

All of his new Snakes clearly said 'Yes Sir!', except for Harry, who simply nodded.

"Mr. Potter," said Snape in his slow, silky voice. "Our. New. Celebrity."

Harry gulped nervously, backing as far against the wall as he could.

"If I have failed to make it painfully clear, Mr. Potter, I expect the highest level of respect from students of my house. That means that you will answer me, with a verbal reply, every time I address you. 'No Sir' or 'Yes Sir' will suffice. Do you think your overinflated little head can manage that?" Snape sneered.

Harry was almost in tears with embarrassment. He quickly shook his head trying to hold his emotions in. Crying had never done any good for him; in fact, it usually only brought more pain, and it was becoming quickly obvious to him that Hogwarts would be no different.

"You insolent little brat," he hissed. "The rest of you are dismissed to your rooms. Lights out now. You will be appropriately dressed and at breakfast at exactly 7am. Do. I. Make. Myself. Clear?" he ground out.

Blaise, Pansy, Draco, Theo, Crabbe, Goyle, Millicent, Kili, and Daphne quickly nodded with an additional 'Yes Sir!' before bolting for their respective dorm rooms.

"Come with me Potter. " And with that Severus Snape turned and departed the Slytherin common room.

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