Sunday, February 17, 2013 | By: Brianna

Potter Noir

This morning, I dipped into my prompt box.  Once upon a very long time ago, I made myself a prompt box.  I think I needed time to forget what I had written on all the little strips of orange paper, because when I first attempted to use it, it didn't go so well because it seemed that I was looking for specific prompts.  I vetoed using "My saddest memory is..." for today though.  Mostly because I'm trying this new thing that involves my trying to be positive.  It's hard though, and I'm not even sure if I'm doing it right.

So today's prompt: Take a passage from a book, a favorite or a least favorite, and rewrite the passage in a different style such as noir, gothic romance, pulp fiction, or horror story.

I was so close to using Pride and Prejudice, but I think I've been watching too much of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, and I don't want to be influenced by that.  So Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban it is!  We're going to give this a try with the scene where Snape catches Harry out of bed with the Marauder's Map and the Map commences to insult Snape.


Professor Snape was a cold, hard-boiled man, his dark eyes flicking between shadows.  He knew Potter would turn up sooner or later, so he was just biding his time.  Leaning up against one of the cold stone walls, Snape tossed a silver Sickle into the air, catching the flipping coin as it descended.  He did all of this without looking because he had been practicing this routine in his bedroom since adolescence.

Sure enough, Potter slipped into the middle of the hallway, bold as brass.  With a lip curling sneer, Snape intercepted the teenaged Boy Who Lived.

"Caught red-handed.  Did you really think you would get away with it, Potter?" Snape asked.  His voice was barely a whisper, but since the portraits slumbered in their frames, Potter was certain to hear.

Potter shifted into a defiant posture, his spine loosening and his arms crossing over his chest.  He knew he was caught and there was no getting away from Snape this time.

"Gotta hand it to you, Potter, you really did give me the slip at the last Quidditch game, but the Dementors made sure you didn't get very far."

"What's it to you where I go?  You're not my mother," Potter sneered, clutching at the worn piece of parchment Snape had neglected to notice so far.  Or so it seemed.  But at the mention of Potter's mother, Snape's eyes glazed over momentarily.  Lily.  Snape shook himself out of the incoming flash of memory and grabbed onto Potter's arm.

"And what might that be?" he asked.

"Nothing.  Bit of parchment Ron got me from Hogsmeade," Potter said, nervously shifting in Snape's ironclad grip.

"Oh, and you're just so attached to it you carry it around when you're wandering the halls after hours?  I don't think so."

Snape flipped around and dragged Potter off to the dungeon.  His office.  The hallways were dark, in shades of gray and black, because that's how Snape saw the world.  Everything was in shades of gray.  Forty-nine.  Forty-nine shades of gray.  Once they reached Snape's office, he shoved Potter into a very uncomfortable chair on one side of his desk, tearing the scrap of parchment out of the boy's hands.

"Show yourself," Snape commanded the parchment, poking at it with his weapon.  Snape's weapon of choice was a wooden model, a stick of a wand as dark as his eyes.  The parchment lay on the desktop, doing nothing spectacular.  "That's an order, bub."  Nothing.  "Severus Snape, the law of this joint demands you give up your secrets."

The parchment remained motionless on the desktop, but words began to appear on its surface as if a typewriter were clicking out each letter.

Mr. Moony addresses his compliments to Severus Snape and expresses his complete bafflement that a goon like that could swindle Albus Dumbledore.

Mr. Padfoot concurs with Mr. Moony and would like to add that Snivellus Snape is an insufferable dog.

Mr. Prongs comments that Snape is a lowdown good-for-nothing greasepot that can't get a girlfriend.

Mr. Wormtail bids Mr. Snape good night and advises that he wash his hair, the slimeball.

Snape looked up at Harry Potter with murder in his eyes.

"As though an invisible hand were writing upon it, words appeared on the smooth surface of the map."
- J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban


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