[switchknife's slash recommendations]

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This shelf stocks the best slash I've managed to find featuring Harry Potter and Severus Snape. Please note that the stories here are not sorted alphabetically, but rather as per the date I add them. This is for your convenience--so that every time you visit this page, the newest recs will be listed first. Only NC-17 fics have their ratings mentioned. The very best stories have a in front of them. Of course, 'best' is an entirely subjective judgement, and all the stories here are worth reading.

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Enjoy the reading!


>>in case of broken links>>owl>>

Last updated: 09 August 2004, with 3 new recommendations.
RUNNING TOTAL: 165 recommendations.

'A Choriambic Progression' by Mairead Triste and Aristide, RATED NC-17
Rec stolen from Quick-Quote, and what a rec it was, too. I have been starving for long, lovely, plot-rich Severus/Harry since last week, and finally I've found some. The story starts off right after OotP, with Harry in Grimmauld Place, and follows him through his misadventures when Bellatrix Lestrange starts following him. I don't have enough brain cells left to write a proper review, but suffice to say that I loved this, that it was more literary and satisfying than most Snape/Harry fics are on Inkstained Fingers, that the characterizations build plausibly on their canon possibilities, and that I doubt I'll ever forget it.
Quote: "I would like to assure you," Snape said coldly before Harry could even open his mouth, "that regardless of whatever our extraordinarily genial Headmaster might have told you, I am precisely as enthusiastic about this... collaboration as I imagine you are. Furthermore, I would like to make sure that you are quite clear that if you behave rashly, or in any way endanger my life, your own, or the success of our joint enterprise, I will not hesitate to punish you to the utmost limits of allowable protocol." Snape wrapped his robes around himself, crossed his arms, and pursed his lips. "And possibly beyond."

'Closing Time' by Dolores Crane, RATED NC-17, CHANSLASH
Gorgeously visceral and painful--Dolores captures both the confused heat of Harry's youth and the confused ice of a jaded Severus who makes, one fateful night, the very worst of mistakes.
Quote: "Liar," said Harry hopelessly into the pillow, "liar." He looked up at Snape. He was crying. Snape made a face somewhere between a wince and a grimace of disgust. He passed a hand over his eyes, wondering how he could possibly have been so stupid as to forget that there were good reasons not to fuck children. Like their childishness.

'A Fracture of the Mind's Eye' by Rushlight, RATED NC-17, RAPE, BONDAGE, SLAVERY
I found that this story really worked for me, precisely because it's a delicious mindfuck that leaves the reader with more questions than answers. Those who know me know that I relish ambiguity more than anything, and that unreliable narrators fascinate me endlessly. The basis is a relatively simple one--Rushlight sets up two parallel realities, one set in a world in which Voldemort is the victor, and the other set in a world where he was defeated. Only one of those realities is 'real', so to speak, but Harry is trapped experiencing both of them. (Ships present: Remus/Harry, Severus/Harry, Lucius/Harry, Draco/Harry.)
Quote: Harry was filled with a morbid desire to open the book and see what kind of spells might be in there, to see what a power-hungry Death Eater bent on revenge might have used on him. Exactly how much prurient manipulation could a mind take before it broke under the strain, and started making up escapist fantasies about a comfortable home and an adoring lover to get away from it all?

'Making Due' by M.J., RATED NC-17
This is an absolutely gorgeous, beautifully written, gritty PWP. (Yes, beautiful and gritty, just the way I like it.) The ending is somehow both warming and bleak at once, and my heart was left aching. I have a real weakness for war-time stories, and this one is just so true to that peculiar feeling of despair and persistence, and the human need for comfort.
Quote: "Not uncomfortable," Snape whispers into the fine hairs on Harry's neck, sending small shivers skating across his skin. "But I'm far too exhausted for the appropriate response, and you, for the same reason, have no idea what you're doing."

'Shining Apples' by Stella
This, ladies and gentlemen, is a truly original approach to Pensieves. Haunting and evocative and disturbing and utterly addictive. Stella manages to capture how Professor Snape, Occlumency tutor and bastard extraordinaire, discovers the secrets of Harry Potter and falls prey to them. Will madness result from their strange obsession with each other? I felt that sense of impending disaster throughout this story, even as I remained breathless and incapable of looking away. What I find most remarkable, and most convincing, is that neither of them say anything about it--Severus Snape and Harry Potter, caught in an endless silent negotiation of desire. Until Harry dares to speak, of course. What happens then is something I'll leave to you to discover.
Quote: Madness, planned or not, was inevitable, the moment Snape agreed (if you could call it that) to take Potter back on. The incredible folly of mixing his memories in with the boy's was evidence enough. There were laws against such things.

'Cursed Artefacts For Sale' by Icarus
Hilarious and just oodles of fun--and if you've ever had a lover who's a junkie for collectibles, you will feel Harry's pain. Ah, poor Harry. Severus is obsessed with collecting cursed artefacts, and drags Harry along for the ride... You will also never look at toasters the same way again.
Quote: Severus shot him an irritated look. "Why Muggles can't simply hold their bread over a fire on a stick I'll never know."

'Room for One More' by DementorDelta, RATED NC-17
Written in honor of Valentine's Day, and thus suitably romantic and very, very hot. Everyone should be familiar with DementorDelta's work by now--she combines sex and affection and wit in a way that is deeply satisfying. Harry finally moves in with Severus; but the unpacking results in some rather... impromptu sex on the carpet. Just lovely.
Quote: "You did say you wanted to get this done today?" Severus asked archly, then rolled his eyes as if recalling something. "Seems to me, promises were made of finishing moving you in, and reservations for a secluded romantic dinner for two?" He eyed Harry's snug jeans with dark heat. "Which we'll never get to if we give into your libido every time your cock catches a strong breeze."

'Opposites Still Attract' by DementorDelta, RATED NC-17, QUASI-ROLEPLAY
Hotter than hot and beautifully intimate. Not to mention original. Ever wonder what wizards do for porn? DementorDelta teaches us in the best possible way--by example. Pure, unadulterated smut of the best kind.
Quote: "Muggles watch. Wizards do. They spend their lives thinking up new ways to watch. We spend ours finding new ways to make it possible."

You'll wince and twitch and gape your way through this story--it hurts and doesn't care to go easy on a reader. (One might almost say that this story puts the 'hurt' in 'hurt/comfort'.) While I find Moody harsher here than I'd ordinarily like to believe, Juxian writes abuse and its effects convincingly. Severus Snape pays the price for his having been a Death Eater by suffering the vigilante 'justice' (or, rather, abuse) of certain Aurors.  But then Harry Potter finds out, and Potter doesn't take kindly to it...
Quote: "They have to leave you alone." There was something almost painful in Potter's voice, something very urgent. "You don't deserve it. I know you were on our side."

'Quid Pro Quo' by Aucta Sinistra, RATED NC-17
Aucta Sinistra is swift becoming one of those authors I can steadfastly depend on for a steady supply of high-quality Severus/Harry fic. 'Quid Pro Quo' is a very emotionally genuine and moving take on the 'Harry gets cursed and goes to Snape for help' scenario. At first I thought that this story was going to be sweetly, flirtatiously entertaining--you know, one of those smut-rich tales that comprise a literary equivalent of a light dinner--but this story darkened as it progressed, and the plot thickened until I nearly stopped breathing near the end. I won't tell you how things end up, of course... Still. I can tell you that there is loads of sexual tension, which is gratifyingly sublimated in scorchingly hot sex. There. That'll encourage you to read the story, won't it?
Quote: "Tactician... is the correct word in this instance." Snape's hand performed a sortie.

'Seventy Times Seven' by Sinope, CHARACTER DEATH
This will hurt you until you cry. It will. Sinope uses repetition like a master, and the structure of this story is strung as tight as a muscle. If you've ever doubted the trauma of silence, the power of things unspoken, this story will restore your faith in it.
Summary: The war ends. Severus Snape, although he survives, pays a heavy price.

'Dragon-Blind' by Thamiris,  RATED NC-17, CHANSLASH, AMBIGUOUS CONSENT
Angry, hot, lyrical hatesex with a side-dish of moral conjecture. Yum. The language is searingly beautiful, slow-moving and utterly ruthless. Few stories have made me whimper and pant like this one, forced me to look away from the screen to catch my breath. The author calls this 'dark and dirty', which it certainly is, as well as deep, introspective and dangerous. Harry wants Snape to be kinder. Snape obliges on his own terms. Set during PoA.
Quote: A revelation. Because it's good to be anchored to Snape, who despises him, but still touches him like no one else has: people you love will leave you or forget you, but hate is now and forever, the strongest thing in the world.

'Competitive Assessment' by Lasair,  UST
(Also contains Remus/Harry.) Ah, one of those quiet stories that doesn't explicitly state anything, but manages to work under your skin with sensual little signals. Severus Snape assesses the competition. And loses. I found his characterization incredibly true to canon--his sense of bitter possessiveness, his jealousy, his inferiority issues, his anger, his denial--and, of course, his peculiar sour-grapes syndrome. I was left with a wonderfully bitter, acidic taste in my mouth after reading this--a sure sign of a perfectly characterized Snape.
Summary: It's different with Lupin because Potter trusts him; likes him. Severus has even caught him calling him Remus on occasion, and Lupin, of course, called him Harry from the start. Lupin always had been good at getting students' defences down, Severus thought grimly, as he stirred another cauldron of that dratted Wolfsbane potion.

'A Study In Solitude' by Hallucination
Just a lovely, quiet, reflective piece, with wonderful insight into Severus Snape's mind and the reasons behind his years of solitude. What's worst is the hope. You'll see what I mean.
Quote: Truth be told, Severus had not known how to treat Harry Potter when he first came to Hogwarts. The two could not have been more different. The boy lacked James�s cocksure attitude, and was quiet as his father was gregarious. James had always carried with him a friendly but challenging aura; Harry was all innocent uncertainty. Severus had not known how to react to him, and so had opted to choose the safest path, which was with venom.

'Relations' by Aucta Sinistra,  RATED NC-17
A simply-written but very involving novella. Harry finds out that Severus Snape has lost someone important to him--and the knowledge makes him perceive Snape in a new light. I found the story's pace easeful and pleasant to follow, and was quite happily occupied reading this for a good one or two hours. I also found Aucta's interpretation of Severus' father (as he appeared in the pensieve incident in OotP) fascinating. I also love how Snape both does and does not make it easy for Harry to court him.
Quote: "That bore a passing resemblance to repartee, Potter," Snape said, sliding onto the stool before the cauldron and tossing his hair back as he bent over his books. "You want to be careful, or I'll start thinking there's more inside that head of yours than Quidditch and irresponsibility."

'Enjoy the Silence' by Snaples
After the death of Voldemort and after everyone have settled on their future plans, Harry wonders what's left. He turns to Snape for an answer.
Quote: 'Enjoy the silence,' he used to say. And we'd sit in the darkness and let our hands converse long into the morning. Often I'd leave before the sun came up. Rarely he allowed me to sleep in his arms.

'Beech Hall' by Aucta Sinistra,  RATED NC-17
An inversion of the usual 'shelter plot'--this time, Dumbledore sends Snape  to Harry's mansion for his own protection. I found this somewhat reminiscent of Tara Tory's 'Hall of the Mountain Kings' in its tone, but it's still very much its own story. Harry is quite sweet here, rather too submissive for my tastes, but he makes the reader's heart ache with sympathy when it seems as though Snape isn't returning his affections. Ron, Hermione and a small cast of original characters support the plot and carry it forward, and this novella is quite an enjoyable night's read. I'm a sucker for magical theory, and this one has just the right amount of it to complement the romantic tension with a bit of Ravenclaw-minded seriousness. I quite grew to like Harry's house--even though its personality (since houses in the wizarding world do have personalities) was as thorny as Snape's.
Quote: "After what you have done," Snape said carefully, "It would be fairly presumptuous for anyone to criticize you for what you have not."

'Tomorrow' by Breed, RATED NC-17, CHANSLASH
Oh my God. Perfect hurt, as raw and rough and spare as Snape's hands. This is what I want when I read Snarry--I want everything to go wrong, I want Harry to be abused, I want Snape to abuse him. I want things no different in sex than they are in the classroom. Why has this author not written more Snarry? Why why why? She's made me cry with this little fic, this hot, heartbreaking little drabble, and she can't tell me she doesn't wish to continue. I'll Imperio her, damn it. I'd provide a quote if I could, but there's barely a sentence that isn't NC-17, and this piece is too tightly strung to tolerate an extract.

'A Dream Within A Dream' by Sharp Tongue
This was lovely: Harry trapped in an unwelcome reality where dreams are the only escape. Smoothly written, desperate, sensual and full of longing--a dream within a dream, indeed. This story's use of magic and memory charms is original and highly fascinating, as are its implications for canon. The prequel, 'You Tread on my Dreams', was written later--and is an optional read. I much prefer the sequel.
Quote: "How--" Harry took a shuddering breath and tried again. "How long should I set the trigger for?"

'Post Mortem' by Snaples
What I find gripping about this novella is that it doesn't take the usual attitude towards post-war victory--when Voldemort is killed there is no dancing in the streets, no cheering of the victors, nothing, nothing. The world has been reduced to little but rubble--and two soldiers, Harry Potter and Severus Snape, have to survive as outcasts rather than herores. The writing is abrupt and minimal, and wonderfully done. I especially love the harshness of the atmosphere here, so bleak and sharp, matched by the quality of Snaples' writing. [Scroll to the bottom of the page to find links to each of the chapters.]
Quote: "Why? So you can avoid trial?" He feels a surge of satisfaction at Snape�s startled glance. "I�m not stupid. Dumbledore is dead. I�m the only one left to testify on your behalf." Something changes in Snape�s face. The rage he has seen on the field, the cruelty that curls his lips just before a killing curse spills from his mouth. It is enough for Harry to tense. "You are stupid if you believe there is a Ministry left to host anything resembling a trial."

A fascinating take on Harry finding darkness within himself, with Severus Snape to ease the way. A very ambiguous story in terms of its motivations--we are never quite allowed to witness Severus as a mindless minion--he has his own designs, his own desires, and Harry only fulfills them by controlling them. The first chapter is possibly the most surprising--and those of you that don't like abrupt confessions or morally illicit deeds should probably steer clear of it. (Actually, of the whole series. No comfortable fluff here.) Harry discovers that he desires Severus, and that he must get what he desires...
Quote: Snape had a dry laugh at this. 'Should I feel humbled that the great Harry Potter has deigned to visit me in my moment of disgrace?'

'Three Seconds' by Snaples, EXTREME VIOLENCE
Heartbreaking. Bitter. Severus Snape is even more accomplished at betraying himself than he is at betraying others.
Quote: Nothing went wrong, boy. Other than the fact you so gamely trusted me.

'The Devil Will Drag You Under' by DementorDelta, RATED NC-17, EXPLICIT CHANSLASH
This is every single wet-dream of mine condensed into a wonderful chanslash story. --OK, not every wet-dream. But close enough. Harry as the curious pre-pubescent boy with a penchant for sexual exploration, and Severus as his not-quite-unwilling guardian... YES. Oh my God, YES. Severus is a tad milder than I usually like him, and Harry's a tad too precocious, but with smut of this brilliance I hardly have cause to complain. And it's DementorDelta, of course, which means that the writing is delicious. The second part can be found here.
Quote: "I don't remember being given much of a choice about our sleeping arrangements," Snape hissed as Harry shot to his feet.

'Of Disguises and Hearts' by Arkady, MUTILATION
A surreal, strange, viciously beautiful mindfuck in which Severus and Harry play their ancient game of vitriol--until, finally, the game turns true. One thing to remember, though: Snape always means what he says.
Quote: "If you ever come near me with that whore's body, Potter, I'll cut your heart out and feed it to you."

'To Sow and To Reap' by Kai
(NOTE: Also contains Severus/Albus.) Only Kai can write both these pairings simulatenously, and make them soar in a way that makes my heart twist and my pulse race. Albus Dumbledore is far more nefarious than he appears, and he knows better than to be territorial when that loss of territory might be to his advantage. This lyrically intense one-shot feels like a game of Wizard's Chess, intricate and deceptive. I absolutely loved it.
Quote: Harry and Severus stand before me now, not quite touching, but close enough together that they radiate solidarity. Severus' eyes are properly downcast, but Harry meets my gaze with defiance.

'Native Tongue' by Kai, BDSM, BLOODPLAY
A searingly beautiful take on why Harry needs love the way he does. Psychologically acute and absolutely gripping, this has to be one of the best second-person POV stories in the fandom. What makes it so remarkable is that it reveals as much about Severus as it does about Harry, even though it's Harry's point of view we see everything through. Just beautiful.
Quote: Midnight finds you kneeling at the foot of your bed, wand in hand, back to the door, naked beneath your winter robes. Your glasses lay folded on the bed table and your eyes are closed.

'Misericorde' by Fabula Rasa, RATED NC-17, RAPE, VOYEURISM
(NOTE: Also contains Sirius/Severus.) Severus Snape starts teaching Harry Potter defensive Dark magic--but there are unforeseen results. Harry becomes infatuated with his instructor, but things aren't quite that simple, because Severus has already been claimed--by Harry's godfather. What results is a strange series of events in which Harry tries not to take what he wants, and Sirius tries to be the ideal guardian. Poor Snape is, as always, caught in the middle. Fabula Rasa combines her trademark hot sex with angst, uncomfortably black humor and magical theory. And Snape is a delightfully stern, bitchy teacher. Enjoy.
Quote: "Don't lie to me, boy." The residual anger from his argument with Sirius was leaking out around the edges of Snape's whipcrack voice, the one Harry had come to associate with his own imminent death. "Of course you meant to overhear, every word of it."

'Something Black' by Caesia
Short, strange, unsettling and lovely. Yes, this is a drabble. That doesn't mean you shouldn't read it--it'll take only a minute, but it'll make you catch your breath. Nothing makes my heart twist like a deep, brooding, dark-hearted Harry.
Quote: "I dream of dementors."

'Waking' by Caesia, CHARACTER DEATH
More gen than slash, but searing, searing, I tell you. Harry's alone in a Muggle flat in London, reliving the memories of a war long gone... This has one of the best Severus/Harry antipathy-scenes ever written, at least in my opinion--I loved how incandescent Snape was to Harry, even after all this time, even only in a dream.
Quote: The memories kept bubbling up, but he pushed them down, down, down... Sliced the resentment and pain into ineffectual slivers that fluttered down, the king and the queen shocked and offended... Breathing in the busy, polluted, metropolitan stench of London, muggle London, his home. Where lives went on and on and had nothing to do with him.

'Definition' by Lamardeuse, RATED NC-17
Every now and then, I can stomach a story in which Snape is actually devoted to Harry. Even more rarely, I find a story in which this works, and works excellently. Lamardeuse paints an initially bleak and eventually hopeful post-war scenario, in which Harry asks Severus for something... and almost gets it.
Quote: 'I have never fucked you.'

'Cell Biology' by Aucta Sinistra
The title isn't quite suited to the story, which is wonderful and lively and not in the least like a biology textbook. Aucta Sinistra takes a simple approach to the post-graduation Severus/Harry dynamic, with Albus and Minerva starring as dubious matchmakers. There isn't anything spectacularly original about the plot, but this is quite the enjoyable dose of Snarry. And I'm never going to forget this hilarious version of Drunk!Minerva.
Quote: "Not to mention the risk you took, leaving them both there all night," Minerva went on. "I shudder to think what might have happened. Just because you've got some ridiculous romantic bee in your bonnet about the two of them -- those two, of all people!"

'The Rain Keeps Falling' by Luthien
There are stories that are strange and slow and sensual, that make your breath deepen and your pulse beat slowly, that curl arousal out of you with the smallest of movements. And hurt you. Inescapably. This is one such story. Harry moves into the new headquarters for the Order of the Phoenix--a house that just happens to be owned by Snape. Rain and wind surrounds them almost continually, and Harry likes to stay awake. One lonely night, he has an encounter in the attic... The ending is so beautiful, so hurtful, that it will make your heart ache. I daren't tell you any more than that now. Suffice it to say that I cried, damn it, and I almost never do.
Quote: "I don't care for the rain," said Snape, in an almost conversational tone which only just betrayed a degree of underlying tension. "Then don't pay attention to it," replied Harry, just as he felt a hand come to rest against his chest.

'Shattered' by Nym, RATED NC-17, AMBIGUOUS CONSENT
My heart has been utterly captured by this most enthralling of novels. The plot might appear to be a standard bonding tale (Severus saves Harry's life by bonding to him), but it is in fact anything but standard--the sensual minimalism of the writing, combined with the flawless characterization, mark it as being a fandom classic in the making. The sort of thing that should be printed and bound in soft green calfhide, with silver lettering on the cover. Yes. Something that will eventually be as famous as Telanu's 'Tea Series'. I actually wrote something of a long essay on this story, which can be found here, if you want to bother reading a longer review. I'd advise you to just read the fic already--and let it thrill you as much as it did me. (NOTE: The link goes to the archive; you'll have to find the story there.)
Quote: "Flesh is flesh, boy, and sex need be no different to any other magical transaction. Learn that and learn to know when you need it."

Severus and Harry take a nap at Dumbledore's insistence. What starts off as a necessary experiment in telepathy evolves into a deep need for constant communication, as Severus and Harry enter each other's minds, each other's hearts, and fall in love. This isn't Cybele's best work, but it's still startling for moments of real tenderness--the sex is hot, the memories heart-rending, and the parting absolutely unbearable. I also love the image of Severus Snape aging gracefully, the dignified Potions master with greying hair and sharp, smouldering eyes. Oh yes.
Quote: "Potter... Listen to me very carefully. I�m not pleased at the prospect of you traipsing about my brain. Before I submit to this, I want your word that whatever you may discover will stay between you and me."

'The Last Gasp' by Telanu
Remarkable little drabble that delivers its punchline so brilliantly that it leaves you breathless. Yes, this is a drabble, but that's no reason not to read it. Honestly, folks. This is the age of flash fiction. Telanu compresses so much meaning into so few words...

'Lox and Gre' by Tradescant, RATED NC-17, CHANSLASH
Just when I had begun to despair of a sequel to Nimori's legendary 'Idle Hands', Tradescant, one of the best writers in the fandom and one of the few truly up to the task, provided me with it. YES. If you're still here--and I'm surprised you haven't rushed off to read the story NOW--let me assure you that this sequel will not disappoint. It's lyrical, it's perversely beautiful and oh so dangerous; the power-play is perfectly pitched, with both Severus and Harry treading a line between surrender and suspicion. Harry's loss of innocence is incredibly compelling to watch, and even if you aren't as perverse as me, you'll find yourself revelling in it.

'Three Uses of the Knife' by Korestemenos, VOYEURISM, SUICIDAL THOUGHTS
If there's one thing I never thought I'd see, it was Snarry chemistry through Ginny Weasley's point of view. Yes. Ginny. Don't let that frighten you off though--this is a surprisingly visceral exploration of the Severus/Harry dynamic from the outside, and it looks so incredibly different from there, so peculiarly beautiful. Ginny's hunger for Harry (and, surprisingly, for Snape) balances the hunger both men feel for each other, and it's remarkably strange and twisted and lovely.
Quote: Harry was leaning against the wall of the Hall, with Snape standing over him. Their bodies were not touching, but Snape seemed to cover Harry. Just an inch apart, Snape enveloped Harry in his presence. Harry was immersed in the dark eyes looking unwaveringly into his. Their voices were a murmur, their gestures minimal, but their conversation was unmistakable. If you knew what to look for.

'Burnout' by ThisVeryInstant
There can never be enough Severus/Harry pre-slash in the world, because it's good to have something other than the sex to think of--that first build, that first tentative (or vicious, as the case might be) blossoming. Severus Snape has what he calls a 'ridiculous crush' on Potter, the new DADA teacher; and tries his best to overcome it. If that fails, he'll try to forget it. And if that fails...
Quote: Potter was the antithesis of the dull, routinized life Severus had grown to dread. The man had a kind of sparkle about him. He somehow seemed more vivid that the rest of the world.

'Absolution' by Rushlight, RATED NC-17, RAPE, TRAUMA, ABUSE, DRUG USE
A heart-breaking journey into the workings of trauma, the aftermath of rape. Harry Potter is finally captured by the Dark Lord, and given to the Death Eaters as a 'toy'. In the ensuing chaos, Severus Snape--undercover as one of the Death Eaters, of course--does the only thing he can do--he cooperates. Can he buy both himself and Harry enough time to escape? What makes this story remarkable is that Rushlight doesn't end the story with the actual escape, but rather begins with it--she traces Harry's journey towards healing with the sort of painful sensitivity that twists your heart. Snape must learn to deal with his own guilt as well--he did, after all, rape Harry Potter. Is Harry willing to grant Snape absolution? Will Snape be able to accept it?
Quote: And it really shouldn't feel as good as this, having all that smooth skin sliding under his palm. Flat stomach, slender hips, lean thighs shaped by years of riding a broomstick. Such warm, young skin, unmarked by anything more serious than the occasional Quidditch pitfall. Innocent in a way that Snape had never been. There was a sense of the forbidden to this that had nothing to do with the misfortune of their circumstances.

'Negatives' by Sinope
Wonderfully odd second-person narration, with Snape as uncomfortable and ambiguous as always--and Harry just as young, desperate and frustrated. Professor Snape finds a student of his getting hopelessly smashed at a Muggle pub, and attempts to drag him back home... But Potter never makes anything easy, does he? What follows is a burningly intense confession, which leaves the reader with ears burning, pulse racing. Arr. I need a sequel to this. I do.
Quote: He's seen you watching him, after all, and he's old enough to know the difference between wanting to kill someone and wanting to fuck him.

'Hall of the Mountain Kings' by Tara Tory, RATED NC-17
A long, charming tale that will occupy a good few hours if you read it carefully. I always enjoy stories that introduce aspects of magical theory that were absent from canon--this story in particular introduces rock magic, which Snape uses to build his home deep in the mountains. Yes, the premise is strange (Snape arriving at the Dursleys to carry Harry off to the mountains), and Harry is rather more complacent than I like--but it's still a lovely tale, and subtly written. There are moments of warmth and unexpected intimacy that make it well worth the read.
Quote: "I'm kidnapping you for your birthday, Potter."

'Fourteen Fathoms' by Hanakai
One of those stories that is more gen than slash, and yet manages to convey more about the SS/HP dynamic than most overtly slashy stories. Snape discovers something about Harry, and reacts in a typically Snape-like fashion. I adore Cruel-Yet-Protective!Snape, and Hanakai's version certainly fits the bill. The second-person narrative flows extremely well, and I'm starting to think of it as a point of view particularly suited to Severus Snape.
Quote: They say that pain fades. It shimmers briefly atop you, chokes you, binds you better than any curse ever could or would, but then it supposedly fades. Its shrill voice withers away like a sun-starved flower and crumbles to dust around you, they say. The pain will go away with time. A year, a hundred, a thousand... What does it matter to them? They say that time heals all wounds. They lie.

'Overhead, Underfoot' by Evil Brooke, RATED NC-17, CHARACTER DEATH
Ah, the sweet burn of angst. Harry's begun to lose his mind after the deaths of everyone he knew and loved--including his more recent lover, Draco Malfoy, and the man he'd tried (and failed) to start a relationship with at Hogwarts: Professor Snape. But is Severus Snape really dead? Will Harry, fragile and wrathful and hurt as he is, tolerate the reappearance of a man who'd deserted him? I quite like how this squeezed my heart into a bitter pulp, but I wish the author had left out the last few paragraphs. It would have ended better with heart-break. You'll see what I mean. (NOTE: In order to read this story, you'll have to get a password from Kardasi.)

'Sherbet Lemon' by Sinope
This story fulfills my monthly quotient for unresolved and utterly inescapable sexual tension. Harry's Occlumency lessons resume, and Harry makes quite a discovery... Sinope's use of imagery is enthralling, and I routinely had to stop and breathe to keep myself grounded. I loved Harry's angry, silent viciousness here, his peculiarly Slytherin concept of revenge. It seems so in-character with his depiction in OotP that I can't help but hope Rowling does the same thing as well. Of course, we can only dream... with perfect little drabbles like this to spur us on.

'Sometimes' by Sloane
If you've ever thought to find a depiction of Snape/Harry that fits--in which Snape is as cruel and strangely right as he is in canon--this story is for you. In this short interval, Sloane manages to capture Snape's strength and sheer bloody-mindedness in a way that few writers can. Snape isn't a gentle or comfortable lover, and certainly not one to encourage dialogue. Is this what hurts Harry even more in the midst of grief, or is this the thing that might save him?
Quote: Sometimes, most of the time, Harry thinks that falling in love with Snape was the worst thing he ever did.

'Lost and Found' by Nym, RATED NC-17
You probably don't even need this review, do you, after spotting Nym's name? Nevertheless, I must say that this is the hot, beautiful, sweaty prequel to 'Change', which I read first, and which is also lovely. But what I love about 'Lost and Found' is how uncomfortable the atmosphere of sexuality is--a badly played Quidditch game (the last of Harry's school career, no less), followed by the rather strange event of Snape cornering Harry in the changing rooms... I will refrain, barely, from salivating too openly over the shower scene. Ahem. Even though it doesn't really deserve an NC-17 rating... (NOTE: I have only been allowed to link to the general archive; you will be able to find the story there.)
Quote: "This isn't Quidditch," Snape informed him, starchily. "If you're interested in romance, I suggest Miss Weasley, or that Creevey twit. I offer something with rather more endurance and fewer strings attached."

'Spiral Upwards and Down' by SQ
A short, haunting piece from Severus Snape's POV. This may or may not be slash, depending on how you look at it: but it is intense, and it leaves you with a strange ache in your chest. I do wish that SQ based a longer series on this, because it would be beautiful--not to say that the one-shot doesn't work excellently, of course.
Quote: Knowing how we manipulate your life is part of my burden, even though I do nothing but watch over you and know that I am part of your prison. You have reasons to hate me beyond petty classroom grievances, boy.

'As Children Often Do' by Lux, RATED NC-17, EXPLICIT CHANSLASH
Ntamara called this a 'twisted romance', which it assuredly is. I wasn't sure I wanted to rec this--it's incriminating, to say the least, and not quite perfect--but the sex is hot and the utter lack of objective morality is captivating. (Why, I am an amoral bastard...) Snape half-seduces, half-manipulates an initially unwilling Harry into the sort of co-dependent relationship that'd have most of us up in arms--how dare Snape do this, being a teacher, and an adult, etc. And they're right--I was suitably appalled by this, at least for a little while. Nevertheless, there is a sense of psychological truth to Harry's reactions, and his peculiar sense of home under Snape's desk, and how it reminds him of his cupboard. Oh. I found the final culmination a bit mechanical, but the nice, sensual touches are what bring this story to life. I think what upsets most people is realistic chan--in which the child really is a child, and not some idealized, unnaturally mature being. If you want to be unsettled, this is certainly the thing to read.

'The Task At Hand' by DementorDelta
This is one of the most fun, helplessly smutty, grin-inducing, lovely works of Snarry I've read in recent weeks. AND IT HAS PARSELTONGUE AND SEX, OMG. DementorDelta is wonderful as always. The plot: Snape refuses to let Harry do Advanced Potions, and Harry decides to confront him about it. What results is a rather peculiar agreement, in which Snape starts out with purely platonic intentions, and Harry persistently tries to overcome them... Not only this, but DementorDelta manages to come up with a theory that explains Harry's rather... extreme... reactions in OotP. Bravo.

'A Modest Proposal' by Telanu
Ha! This has to be the most delightful, heart-lightening tale I've read since the beginning of the year. Severus Snape tries to propose... and Harry Potter decides to play the fool. (Or rather, the sage.) Oh my God. I wouldn't have thought it was possible to grin so much during a fic, to have my heart sing like this. It's perfect.

Disturbing, peculiarly amusing, inventive smut. It's pure porn, the kind you'd expect from an anthology of unadulterated erotica, and deeply convincing. You'll be shocked at nearly every turn--little Harry Potter is quite the precocious child here. At thirteen years old, Harry is plagued by the oddest fantasies... The only mistake he makes, though, is to write them down. (Also contains Remus/Harry and Sirius/Harry.)

'Folly' by Sinope
Snape takes to alcohol the way Harry takes to daydreams. Can there be a happy ending for this couple, when one half of it is perpetually in denial? Sinope does a lovely job, as always, and her image of Snape (hapless desire, anger, self-loathing) is so perfect that I simply couldn't escape it. Harry's innocence is peculiarly, heartbreakingly sweet--Sinope said she wanted to write 'anti-chan chan', and I'd have to say she's succeeded.
Quote: Harry Potter has never drunk firewhiskey; he's only seventeen, and Hermione always gives Ron That Look when he suggests sneaking some at the Hog's Head. Harry knows the taste of firewhiskey, though. He's felt its sourish slap of heat enough times to recognize it from the faintest hint, because Professor Snape's mouth always tastes of firewhiskey when he kisses Harry.

'Master of Seduction' by Sloane, RATED NC-17
Whee! This'll have you biting your lip to keep from giggling madly--well--giggling one minute and wincing the next. If you've ever had a seduction go awfully wrong (or feared that it would!), you'll be able to sympathize with poor Harry here... He tries, he tries so hard to seduce Snape properly. But things are never so simple with the Potions master, are they?
Quote: Harry tried to get his breath back so he could come up with a retort, and then move to Romania and change his name and fix clocks for a living.

I believe the title sums it up nicely. It's Amanuensis, it's smutty, it's pairing-rich fic with almost every kink you can think of; it's psychologically flawless, beautifully characterized, angry and sexy and vicious and tender and ooooh. It hurts to read it, it's so gorgeous. So sensually exact. Harry is trapped in a world of eternal punishment after Voldemort's victory, and there seems no end in sight... I couldn't stop reading this, this sweet nightmare, this dark heaven, and my fingers were chewed to bloody stumps by the end of it. Ah, such pain is joy. (Also contains other Lucius/Harry, Draco/Harry, Voldemort/Harry and other pairings.)

'Obituary' by Nym
Snape writes a letter to be opened only in the event of his confirmed death. I initially cringed at the title--because God, I knew that someone with Nym's abilities could literally rip my heart out with such a subject matter. I should have listened to my own warnings... More fool I. At any rate: Snape's voice rings true, and I want to find Harry and inflict horrible things on him, even though none of this is his fault and of course, if you truly do feel like hurting Potter after reading a Snape-fic, you know that Snape's tone has been done to perfection. At first I was uncomfortable, and sceptical--and my lip curled at the obvious self-absorption of the letter. (Who but the self-absorbed bother to write such things, anyway? If you leave, you should at least do others the courtesy of leaving quietly.) But then I realized that this was simply my anger at the thought of Severus dying--I couldn't take it--and as this vignette progressed I was inevitably drawn in, inevitably hurting, and all my scepticism counted for nothing.

Oh my God. I think that was my reaction when I first read this; and it's still my reaction today. If explicit chan upsets you, I'd warn you to stay far away from this--but if it doesn't, sit yourself down with a spoon and fork and a variety of elongated sharp objects, because you're going to be making a delicious meal out of this. Aspen's descriptions of Harry make him seem much younger than he is, and you'll feel frissions of discomfort (delight?) occasionally, even as you find yourself incapable of stopping. (Any more than Snape can!) Gorgeous, innovative stream-of-consciousness smut with enough perversion to keep a devil like me happy for a very, very long time.

Harry turns sixteen, and Snape's been waiting a long, long time. I nearly wept with the heat of it as it went on, building and building and building... Snape's voice is one of the most convincing I've ever read--riddled with self-disgust and lust and thwarted longing. His fantasies involving Harry are almost unbearably hot. It should probably be illegal to enjoy this sort of thing so much.
Quote: Sometimes he would fantasize. This vexed him at first, because when it began - again, Potter was in his fourth year - the boy was still exactly that; a boy child, an amazing prodigy who was so green it sickened him, some days, but the fantasies wouldn�t cease. Over time, his discomfort lessened. At heart, he was truly a master of inducement, and he debated himself into an irritated corner, and wouldn�t concede for pain of death.

'Balance Point' by Nym, RATED NC-17
The most recent part of Nym's exquisite 'Sins of Omission' series, disappointingly short but still incredibly hot. I'd nearly gone mad, waiting for the Snarry smut that surfaced too rarely, and almost too beautifully, throughout this series. Nym outdoes herself. The sex is real and inexorable and so, so sweet after the long separation that came before. I loved the little touches of imperfection Nym was unafraid to gift to her story--moments that reminded me of how young Harry really is, how peculiarly graceful and clumsy all at once--and Snape, of course, always hungry hungry hungry. No one can quite make me yearn for my very own Harry like he does. I loved this--and can only hope that Nym means to continue. Soon.
Quote: I take his face between my palms and he bends over, touching his lips to mine with unprecedented tenderness. "Do it to me," he whispers, eyes closed, lips moving against mine, his weight rocking gently above me, but carefully separate.

'A Solitary Pleasure' by Luthien
A delightful, sweet little tale that has no qualms about playing with the reader's expectations--rather like a narrative game of hide-and-seek. Professors Snape and Potter appear to be in something like a harmonious relationship--until, that is, Snape discovers a hobby... Part Two can be found here.

'Peppermint' by Polly
An eccentric, deeply absorbing story about Harry's growing fascination with Professor Snape. Why is it eccentric, you ask? Well, the characterization is lovely, yes, but it's backed up by some truly startling images--and if you know me, you know that I love to be startled. Polly does an excellent job of luring us into Harry's distracted state of mind--suffering, as he is, from chronic Snape-fantasies. The sequels switch POVs occasionally, so that you get to see Snape's side of things as well. The only things that bothered me were the interventions of Muggle music, but it didn't affect the atmosphere all that much. You'll be tense with waiting to see what happens, yes you will... Sequels: 'Beasts of Burden' and 'The Devil's Crowbar'.
Quote: There was no repeat performance of the subtle and fantastic spectacle of Professor Snape quietly losing his mind. The very next time that Harry had Potions, everything was back to normal. Snape did not look like a man who harbored secret longings for anything...

'The Absence Series' by Merri-Todd Webster, RATED NC-17, SOME HET, THREESOME
Sex. Sex. Sex. Gorgeously written, languid and sensual--this is a series remarkable for attempting a Snape/Harry/Hermione threesome--and not just as a one-off, but as an established relationship. Yes, this is gratuitous--almost entirely so--but I frankly couldn't resist it. The entire series is a chain of golden PWPs, and every now and then this is just what a body needs. The imagery is a tad overdone at times, but each build is flawless and one honestly doesn't regret it. I need more porn like this.

'Do As You Like by Merri-Todd Webster, RATED NC-17
The sort of long post-war romance that truly absorbs you, and comforts you on a cold and rainy night. (Or during a boring lecture. Whatever.) Webster does an excellent job on the 'changed' Severus Snape, now free of Lord Voldemort and itching to do what he really wants. There are also gorgeous references to wines, drinks and foods, among... other sensual delights. Harry Potter is as free as Severus Snape is, after the war--perhaps they can realize their freedom together? There are moments of quirky humor and hot sex, interspersed with a kind of understated sentimentality. Not perfect, but I quite enjoyed this.
Quote: He let Mrs. Weasley know he wouldn't be around for dinner, but he had no desire to let her or Ron know that he was going out with Snape--for the second time. Ron respected Snape, but he still didn't like him, and he would surely find it preposterous that Harry wanted to spend time with him. After being made much of for nearly a week by the Weasleys, Harry found himself craving the man's acerbity, like something to cleanse the palate after too much sugar. Snape was vinegar and garlic and dry red wine.

'That Never Felt A Wound' by Nimori, RATED NC-17, AMBIGUOUS CONSENT
An extremely unusual story, in which Snape has an unusual problem, and finds an even more unusual solution to it. Sirius Black is dead--but not quite gone, and takes to haunting Severus Snape. Snape decides to get rid of him the only way he knows how--by using Harry to do so. Extremely hot and unsettling and darkly amusing at times--this is Nimori at her erotic best. (Also contains Sirius/Severus.)

'To Dream These Dreams' by DragonLight
One of the best post-OotP takes on Snarry yet written--sounding so very canon, with Harry both grieving and angry, and Snape as intense and disagreeable as ever. However, in the aftermath of Sirius' death, both Harry and Severus start to analyze themselves and each other, and discover that some form of truce between them is possible, after all... DragonLight's characterization is spot-on, not in the least exaggerated or overdone, and even her minor characters are perfectly written.
Quote: Harry let his head slip down to rest on his outstretched arm. "I'm not James Potter. I don't think I'm anything like him, and I don't want to be." He sighed. "And the more I think about it, the more it seems that if I'm like anyone, I'm like Snape."

'The Impossible (Fear)' by Libertine, RATED NC-17, REFERENCES TO CHANSLASH
Gorgeous, brilliant. Dangerous and perverse and oddly vulnerable, this has to be one of my favorite short stories of all time. Such a masterpiece--with Severus Snape's neurotic, obsessive mind framing a wonderfully intense (and disjointed) series of sexual encounters--all unreal, but all of them equally undeniable. The helplessness of Snape's voice, contrasted with the cool laughter of Lucius Malfoy's, is enough to make me breathless. And Harry. Of course. The way Libertine writes him is... immoral. Wonderful. Exactly the way a repressed fantasy should be written--because Harry is that, in this story. Snape's fantasy; the center of his universe; a fictional creation. Exquisite. [Username: 'veela', password: 'over18'.]
Quote: As a lecher he was a failure (as a lecher, as a teacher, and, almost certainly, as a man). At the base of it, beneath the veneer of disdain, he was a moral man, a righteous man. The mirror showed a pale, slim bachelor, well groomed; his wardrobe was extensive and tasteful; his eyes were bright and intelligent; he had a job; he could offer astute commentary on most subjects; his quirks (so he felt) were charming, rather than annoying. With his natural cynicism in check he could be quite personable. He had self-set standards to live up to, an obligation to be good (to himself, to Albus, to everyone), an attitude which found itself painfully at odds with those fleeting bursts of (desire) worry that overcame him every time he looked at the boy.

'An Awfully Odd Adventure' by DementorDelta, RATED NC-17, CROSSOVER
A most delightful fairy tale which qualifies as a Peter Pan crossover. Oh! So beautiful! This story is the equivalent of a long, warm, sun-drenched holiday on a mystic isle. Harry is the leader of the Lost Boys, and is hence concerned about the arrival of pirates in his idyllic world. Captain Snape, however, turns out to have a rather different sort of treasure in mind...
Quote: "I am Captain Snape," came the soft hiss. "Captain Severus Snape." The hook reached toward Harry's face, and he forced himself not to flinch as cold metal glided along his jaw, then flicked away. "Who are you?"

'Lucid' by Sinope
I... I... don't know what to say. Usually I can work up some sort of glowing review, but this particular story surpasses my abilities to express how beautiful it is. (Well. I'll try!) Set during the Occlumency lessons of OotP, 'Lucid' is a remarkable exploration of Severus Snape's mind--and it's forbidden longings. This is the sort of perfectly balanced, rich work of art that leaves one breathless with joy. I wish I was this story. Yes. Yes. Yes. And I can't even offer you a quote, because the entire story is worth quoting.

'Pale Shadow' by Sushi, RATED NC-17
Harry Potter and Severus Snape grow old together. I found this beautiful, as well as slightly frightening at the end (you'll see what I mean)--oh, but lovely, lovely overall. I love stories which take a glimpse at Severus and Harry far into the future, beyond the youthful enthusiasm one would expect from them now (although 'enthusiasm' might not be a word Snape favors...). It is more difficult to think that far, to envision it--and the writer must be brave to do so.

'Like a Stone' by Isolde
An R-rated, gorgeous mix of romantic comedy and angst. The plotline is from a challenge, and hence is standard--Harry finds out that Snape is gay, and develops a bit of a preoccupation. The preoccupation soon flowers into a full-blown crush, but Severus Snape is delightfully in-character as the cold and contemptuous professor, shunning his student's attentions. This is how it would happen in canon, if at all...
Quote: "Go back to your seat Potter. If I can decipher this chicken-scratch I�ll answer your question, pretending the effort will make any difference."

'Wellspring' by Resonant, RATED NC-17
A delicious sequel to Resonant's famous 'The Familiar', this manages to be both hot and comforting, familiar and erotic. You must read the prequel first, and if you have any brain cells left at all after reading the brilliance that is 'The Familiar', all your remaining ones will be quietly destroyed by the smut of 'Wellspring'. Oh, I love this. Hogwarts has a new Potions master... but what is Snape's reaction?

'Did This To Me' by Telanu, RATED NC-17, MIND CONTROL
This, my friends, is canon!Snarry. It's got to be. It better be. Harry is under sexual mind control, and either unable or unwilling to break out of it... This is porn so hot, so incandescent, that the mere act of reading it is probably illegal. (Not to mention the spell Snape uses...) I loved how angry this was, hateful and bitter and potent, and how out of control Severus was--predator to Harry, but prey to his own passions. Hate and power and sex and magic... Oh yes. I do need more of this.
Quote: "Do you think I want to touch you, Potter?" rasps his captor's voice. "Any more than you want to touch me?"

'Between a Rock and a Hard Place' by Isolde, RATED NC-17
Oh, it's a very hard place indeed. Sirius has to ask Severus to marry Harry... and only the most serious of situations could force him to do that. Harry's life is in danger, and were it not for that, Snape wouldn't have complied either. Would he?
Quote: "Would you all stop saying 'Sirius', like I'm an irrational child!" Looking around rather desperately, he finally turned to Dumbledore with an intense look that clearly took the older wizard aback - "Do you really trust him with Harry, with that kind of power over Harry?"

'Bruise' by Resonant
Oh, have you ever read a story that made you want to press your knuckles into your eyes and cry? This is it... A tiny drabble, and a sequel to the unparalleled, pure-voiced jewel that was 'Down, You Lie Down Too'. Read that one first, and then this drabble... The first piece will mend your heart. The second might just break it.

Severus is asked to fill in for Pomfrey, and receives a most unexpected reward... If you're in the mood for well-written, addictive, morally suspect porn, this is it. I shamefully admit to reading this almost every night for several weeks in a row--compulsively watching the nasty, manipulative Professor Snape making a meal out of our innocently sexual, exploited little Harry. Oh guh. This satisfied some of my most compelling kinks, and all I could do was sit there and drool and let my buttons be pushed...
(Yes, and I do feel horribly guilty reccing it--it's that sort of secret delight we tend to keep to ourselves, but I decided it would be in the interest of chan in general, were stories like this recommended. Please heed the warnings.)
Quote: Sweaty, weak-kneed, in possession of a dubious victory, Snape withdrew, and turned his back to clean his hands and fasten his trousers. Potter had not moved, his ragged breath jerking his shoulders, face still pressed tightly to the pillow.

'The Proud Man's Contumely' by Apathy's Priestess
(Also contains Remus/Harry.) This story is remarkably canon in tone and structure--it's got that sense of lurking darkness that lingered around every chapter of OotP, and everyone is so in-character it's delightful. Snape in particular took my breath away--nasty and gloriously greasy as usual, but not without an inkling of forbidden feelings towards Harry (who is as angry and bitter as he was in OotP, and every inch the adolescent unaware of his charms). The plot is gripping, with some truly tantalizing mysteries holding the dialogue together. It reads wonderfully like a slashy take on OotP, and I nearly wept with joy when Harry's Occlumency lessons were resumed. (Yes! Snape! Harry! Snarking!) And then there's Remus, of course, who's become Harry's guardian in lieu of Sirius' death. If only he could stop having these irksomely lustful thoughts about his ward...

'The Mirror of Maybe' by Midnight Blue
Yes, I've finally recced this. It's my own fault that it took me so long--I must have gotten no less than forty e-mails (I'm not kidding!) reminding me to recommend this epic, and I genuinely forgot each time I came around for an update. My apologies--and the sheer number of people who e-mailed me about it is probably evidence enough not only of this story's stature in the fandom, but also of its quality. Midnight Blue creates a Harry unlike any other I've ever read--not only a mage, but a War mage, jaded and serious and, oh my God, sexy. (What? Is that the first time I'm using the word 'sexy' for a male character? Oh yes, it is...) The plot is so ingenuous that it leaves me gasping, and the characterization (particularly of Harry! Harry!) is so delicious that it makes me tremble. There is a nice background of magical theory to it too, which, combined with the action, is enough to keep a nerd like me satisfied. The only unfortunate thing is that it is currently incomplete...
Summary: When a mirror of dubious origin swallows up a fifteen-year-old Harry Potter and almost immediately spits him back out again, everyone is too busy being relieved to care if the Harry Potter who has reappeared is the same Harry Potter that went in. But is he? In a glittering tale of time-shift, war magic and concealment charms, we discover that it is in fact the future Harry Potter--a War Mage of great experience, who has become trapped in his fifteen-year-old body. Will he be able to repair the future? To save both it and his lover, Severus Snape, from ruin?

'Corvus Fallere' by Mouse, RATED NC-17, SLAVERY, BDSM, VARIOUS KINKS
Dark, frightening and simply addictive. The atmosphere is simultaneously dangerous and decadent, and the new species introduced here are stunningly original. Severus Snape's characterization walks that fine and difficult line between mercy and punishment, and oh, it's delectable how unpredictable things are.
Summary: How long do you fight when you've already lost? Harry, Ron, and Hermione must survive in a world where all is not what it seems; but what it seems is unbearable.
Quote: Come now, Mr. Potter, you can�t have truly believed that Hogwarts hadn�t fallen before now? With your illustrious presence gone, the whole light side simply rolled over. The fighting has been over with for months.�

'A Nick in Time' by Tira Nog
Sweet perfection--two words one doesn't generally associate with this pairing, but Merlin, this story deserves it. Both Harry and Severus are turned into children (I won't tell you why--that would give away a secret), and are left in the care of Ron and Hermione. A curious future-fic which recovers the strands of the past, I adore this story for its psychologically flawless portrayal of a young Severus Snape--thorny outcast, magical prodigy and utterly devoted friend of one Harry Potter. Your heart will melt so many times in the duration of this fic that you'll probably never be able to patch it up again. Oh, send me back! Send me back to those lovely times!

'Correspondence' by Snaples and Cybele, RATED NC-17, BREATHPLAY, DOMINANCE
A series of erotic letters exchanged in class--yes, in class--between our favorite Potions master and the intrepid Boy Who Lived. By turns submissive and angry, vicious and tender, this is a fascinating take on both role-playing and sexual psychology. My reaction to the story was, I think, 'Guh'. The writing isn't pristine, but it is gripping nonetheless. Once you have read this first part, make sure to read the sequels, Part II and Part III. Consummation awaits--but who is really in control?
Quote: I will use you, Mr Potter. I will use you against you. Your Slytherin impulses against your Gryffindor sense of shame. Oh, you'll twist. Beyond recognition.

'Waiting' by Luthien
A short, haunting piece from a most unusual perspective--Dumbledore's. Do not avoid this story because of that, however--it is unique, chilling and unforgettable. My lungs were burning by the end of it, and soon I realized why--I'd been holding my breath.

'Over Tea' by DementorDelta
I do, I do want to marry McGonagall. This fic settles it. Softly humorous and sharply perceptive by turns, DementorDelta writes an elegant, beautifully worded story. The angle it takes is unusual too--focusing on relationships and situations not considered by most Snarry stories.
Summary: Snape and McGonagall forge an unusual friendship until a certain student tests the bonds.

'Childe Harry to the Dark Tower Came' by Isolde, RATED NC-17, SLAVERY, REFERENCES TO CHANSLASH
Before you run away at the 'slavery' warning (and why would you run away at the chanslash, I wonder?), let me assure you that this is a remarkably original and sensual tale. While the plotline appears to be unoriginal on the surface (a Potions accident sends Harry and Snape back in time), the setting and tone of this piece are unique, and Isolde can write Snarry better than I can dream it. It's a wonderful journey back in time, before Hogwarts existed, and when it was common custom for high-class wizards to keep 'boys'. In order to stay alive, Snape and Harry must assume the roles of master and servant--but how will this affect their insofar platonic relationship? The background on this society and its architecture is especially absorbing. Just suspend your disbelief and go along for the ride.
Quote: "What's this?" he said, but Snape hushed him, guiding him to the burnished wall mirror. In stunned silence Harry watched Snape lean forward and kiss the side of his face, saying, in a soft but distinct voice, "Harry." Which couldn't be happening. Snape would never - and to say his name, in that voice, Snape would never - unless he had to, unless they were being watched.

'Unnatural' by Lexin and Tidmag, RATED NC-17, MPREG
I much prefer Lexin's other MPREG story, 'A Life More Ordinary', but this one is still well worth the read, and quite fascinating in its take on Hermaphrodite!Harry. I especially liked how toned down the story was, and how quietly erotic--the details of Harry's life, his feelings, all written of carefully and with respect. I usually avoid MPREG, because it is difficult to write without making it sound like a travesty--but with Lexin, of course, one doesn't have to worry about that. Amanuensis is probably the only other writer of MPREG for whom I feel such trust.

'Time Passages' by GMTH, RATED NC-17
The most exquisitely structured series of drabbles ever written, ranging from G to NC-17 in rating. Unfortunately it is near impossible to provide a summary without spoiling the coiled tightness of it, so I'll leave you to discover your wonder for yourself. You will, you will cry by the end of it.

'A Convenient Marriage' by Diana Williams, RATED NC-17
I absolutely adore Diana's work, and this particular story is such a wholesome mixture of humor, snark, sex and romance. Harry finds himself with an unwanted suitor, and is forced to choose Severus Snape as his champion, as the one who will defend him. What results is a marriage of convenience in which neither party appears to be overtly willing. But things do change, don't they?
Quote: He considered Flooing to Hogwarts to confront his errant husband but decided that Snape might need a little distance to sort things out, and if Harry pressured him in any way, he'd just plant his stubborn feet and refuse to listen. A letter was a much better idea.

Unnerving, quietly horrifying. Harry asks his lover a painful question. The answer, however, is worse. What affected me most was the reversed structure of this story--salvation comes before damnation, not afterwards. Pay attention to the time-line, though; it'll keep you sane.
Quote: A whisper of Latin and scarlet ribbons bound Severus's arms and ankles. Look at me! Ink black eyes were pools of reflected firelight. Lucius liked to believe that those eyes hid nothing from him. Watching him, Severus seemed so young. Nineteen years old. Barely a man.

'Adrift' by Anino
Yet another quiet gem found at the Severus Snape Fuh-Q Fest. Evenly measured, careful writing with just an edge of glittering angst. Wonderful. Anino has that rare gift of understatement, and I truly treasured it here. Harry Potter leaves Hogwarts soon after defeating the Dark Lord--but does he know what freedom tastes like? This is how I'd like Canon!Harry to be, in a few years' time...
Quote: "Only... Did you never doubt that it would come to this?"

'Disarmed' by Luthien
A near-perfect mix of angst, domestic comfort, anger and love. Not as hot and wonderful as the NC-17 sequel, 'The Key to the Kingdom', but worth reading because of it. 'The Key to the Kingdom' finally achieves the angsty, intimate, sexy perfection promised by its prequel--not to be missed, and it is Luthien, after all. The rewarding experience here is to have a dysfunctional Snarry relationship--the only kind there can be between these two stubborn men, after all--and yet have it achieve a happy ending. Rough around the edges and touched with angst, but happy nonetheless. You will want to hug the author afterwards, so keep your sack of squees at the ready!

'Sense and Sensibility' by Phoenix Akai, CHANSLASH
So lovely and lyrical that my heart beat with the rhythm of it. Umissable, perceptive work. I cannot, unfortunately, provide a summary for this... It is image- rather than plot-based. Pure, unadulterated characterization--the sort of thing one dreams of discovering, and now I finally have.
Quote: Harry Potter and Severus Snape are two entirely different creatures. Harry is chapped lips and skinned knees and peridot eyes and "It'll be easier if we sneak out the back." Severus is harsh whispers and statuesque and icy eyed and "Potter, I don't think I've seen a more thoroughly mangled job."

'Hearts and Flowers' by Louise Lux
Completely barmy, charming madness that I'm re-reading for the umpteenth time. Severus Snape is caught with his lover in flagrante delicto by Dobby. Dobby is very, very happy and wants everyone to know. (Ha!)
Quote: 'Oh, sir! I is so happy for you and Harry. We all said you would never be having any fun, ever,' Dobby babbled. Snape was sure he could see tears of joy welling in his eyes. 'And now you is shagging!'

'Precious Illusions' by Kat & Tzigane, RATED NC-17
A novel I read about six months ago, only to stumble across it again recently--and thank Merlin for that! I can't believe I forgot to recommend this before--the writing's superb, and the angst is top-notch, even if Severus is rather gentler than I'm used to. (It's strange, isn't it, that after a long time of shipping Snarry it's gentleness that makes me wince.) There are mentions of Lucius/Draco, Lucius/Severus and Draco/Severus as well, but that only makes the complexity of the story all the more attractive.
Summary: Harry feels lost after Voldemort's demise, and seeks a comfort that Draco doesn't want him to have.

'In November' by Telanu
I wanted to cry. The beginning itself will do that to you--but ah, wait until the end. I can't give you a summary for fear of spoiling the plot, but I hope you'll read the story nevertheless.

'Lachrymose' by Armand Malfoy
One of the most original, strange and compelling Snarry stories I've read--a cross, as one of my friends put it, between the 'Harry Potter' books and 'The Silence of the Lambs'. Chilling, erotic, dysfunctional, the author's sharp words are unrelenting. The plot is unique and, if it weren't written so well, might be a tad unbelievable... After the war on Voldemort, Severus Snape loses his mind and becomes--get this--a serial killer. Characterized with the same, smooth darkness as Hannibal Lecter, the Snape in this story is sleek, frightening and dangerously attractive. Harry Potter, the Auror in charge of tracking him down, also used to be his lover. The complexity and sheer style of this story are remarkable. Do not, I repeat--do not miss out on this. You won't forget it.
Sequel: 'Gloamings'

'Recognition' by Nym, RATED NC-17
Lovely, angry, rough, perversely tender sex. Post-OotP: Harry Potter decides to celebrate the newly free world with Snape. Severus would rather not celebrate with anyone, but Harry is persistent. Thank heavens for that!

'Eudaimonia' by Zillah
Where do people go when they apparate? This is a very strange, spare and careful story that leaves one's heart aching at the end... Snape takes Harry to 'the space between' in order to protect him from Voldemort, i.e., to the region of space where people go when they apparate. Severus and Harry spend a long time there, in hiding, and their relationship eventually changes. The story's rated PG, but the sensuality that pervades it is all-consuming.

'The Beast' by Sushi, RATED NC-17
Sushi's remarkable plot weaves magic, elves, horses, Voldemort and split personalities together in an inescapably well-written novella. The beginning is one of the most gripping of all--only Sushi can make me want to jump Snape within five seconds of the story's beginning. (You'll see what I mean... Rain and storms and scowls, yowzah!) Severus and his horse (who is more than a horse), stumble into a strange place where Voldemort shares the same body as the supposedly dead Harry Potter, and where house-elves are more than house-elves. Will Severus and Harry--who is not always Harry--manage to defeat Voldemort once and for all? And will Severus manage to avoid a most unwanted marriage?

'Fool' by Kass, RATED NC-17
Delightful, absolutely delightful--made my heart smile and ache simultaneously. Harry Potter the boy had a crush. Harry Potter the man has not forgotten. And Severus Snape, the Potions master, rediscovers the beauty of human warmth.
Quote: 'We had gone directly from Potter's proposition to bed. We had not kissed: it had seemed too intimate for men who disliked each other as much as we.'

'Truth' by Quicksilver, RATED NC-17
Plot: In Harry's sixth year, Professor Snape decides to be more sadistic than usual--he makes his students brew truth serums. Mayhem ensues.
So exquisitely angsty, erotic and intense  that you'll be hard put to do anything but whimper by the end of it. This is apparently Quicksilver's first fanfic, but its quality is better than that of much 'experienced' writing out there--and Quicksilver can write smut better than I can imagine it. And that's saying something. This is so hot, so perfect, so angry, and Severus really is a bastard--not many people can write Snarry and still preserve the essential antipathy that exists between the two. This is what makes the story remarkable--it's the hate, the intensity of it, and also the peculiar tenderness that runs through it like light. Both Snape and Harry are so in-character they might as well have emerged straight from OotP: vengeful and bitter and aching. Oh, yes. This goes to my 'read every night before going to sleep' list.

'Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme' by HP Femme, RATED NC-17
A wonderfully entertaining tale, a healthy eleven chapters long, about a sexually precocious young Harry and his soon-to-be companion Severus Snape. The plot takes off when Harry is diagnosed with the rather embarrassing magical STD known as cytomegalovirus magicus (*cough*), for which only Snape can brew the cure... Lovely, snark-laden fun. (If you are over 17, you may use the username 'potter' and the password 'snape' to access this story.)

'Praemedicatus' by HP Femme, RATED NC-17
Elegant smut with a generous dose of moving romance and, according to the author, 'a modicum of plot'. In the war against Voldemort, Harry is more interested in protecting his lover than he is in saving the rest of the world... Severus Snape, however, doesn't want to be protected. (If you are over 17, you may use the username 'potter' and the password 'snape' to access this story.)

'Parseltongue-tied' by DementorDelta, RATED NC-17, SNAKE!SEX
Surprisingly adorable, given the rather perverse plot--which is of course hot, and I do mean HOT, but not without a certain sweet sentimentality. If you aren't smiling softly by the end of this story, you're... well, you're a right snake. No offence, Professor Snape.

'' by Amanuensis, RATED NC-17
(Various pairings, although Snarry plays a major part.) I inched into this story cautiously, because Amanuensis warned her readers that Shakespeare purists (not that I'm a purist) would 'just freak' upon reading it--but no, I didn't freak, I LOVED it, and I'm still squeeing at the thorough smuttiness of her take on 'Henry V'! And regardless of the smut, the beginning of the story was so very much in the spirit of Shakespeare's text that I was biting my lip with joy. Politics and Slytherins and threatening missives--all in a good day's work.

The first two chapters of this story seemed to me rather pretentious, since Needle was modelling Nabokov's literary-yet-sexually-charged Professer Humbert. However, this story eventually blossomed so that it achieved that perfect balance between sex and tragedy, between abuse and obsession... Harry, in a small skirt and even smaller knickers, eventually evolves into more than just a sex object--but at this point his innocence is already stolen, and perhaps only his abuser can comprehend the true depth of its loss. This is erotica, yes, but it does have deeper undercurrents.

'Down, You Lie Down Too' by Resonant, RATED NC-17
Wow. This made me sting with its beauty, like cold morning air when you're still wrapped warm in bed. The casual, concrete intimacy between two soldiers--Harry Potter and Severus Snape--and how they sublimate their need for 'human contact' in each other. It's the middle of a war, people are starved... But this isn't angsty, no. It's how life is--just there, just undeniable, and there is only necessity. No melodrama here, and Resonant's famously light touch illuminates the sex wonderfully. One of the most mature, realistic Snarry fics I've read, and a true pleasure to read.

'Minor Arcana' by Isolde (PART I: 'Declaro', PART II: 'Pervinco')
(Various pairings: Severus/Harry, Severus/Draco, Draco/Harry, Others.) A fascinating, absorbing series. One of the most sexually rich reads in the fandom, filled with politics and deceit and power-play and oh, wonderful, wonderful dialogue. Isolde has a gift for sensitizing the reader to the story's surroundings, and for shifting points of view flawlessly, so that you are both in and out of various characters' heads by the time a single chapter is done. Few people can characterize as skilfully as she does, or imbue such eroticism into hidden glances and carefully spoken words. (Summary: A wizarding tradition is revived in Harry's seventh year, but things get swiftly out of hand as Harry, Snape and Draco get caught up in a game of negotiations, seduction and opportunity cost.)

'Contemporary Magical Innovations, by H. Granger' by Kai
One of the most original, entertaining and technically accomplished Severus/Harry novellas I've read. The humor is wonderfully light, interspersed with edgy politics, history and detailed magical theory. The narrative is divided by quotations from Ms Granger's text (see title), but it is not her POV that dictates the story itself, so don't worry. It's all Snape/Harry, all the time. Sex and snarking abound! I was squeeing so hard I could barely breathe.
Summary: In the aftermath of Voldemort's defeat, a coterie of ex-Death Eaters rush in to fill the power vacuum. Only, their main ideology is not of supremacy so much as profit. The 'Merchants of Darkness', as they like to call themselves, build a massive commercial empire based on illegal Dark Magic and terror. Harry Potter and Severus Snape find themselves working together to defeat this new threat... and their hormones.

'Through a Shattered Mirror' by Rushlight, RATED NC-17, SLAVERY, THREESOME
(Various pairings: Severus/Harry, Severus/Draco, Draco/Harry, Severus/Harry/Draco.) While this is not Draco-centric, I thought I'd included it because of the large part Draco does play. This is lush eroticism, bursting with angst and exquisitely painful insight into what it means to be a slave. Before you run away, let me assure you that the concept of 'slave' is far from pedestrian here, and Harry's reaction to being captured and forced into servitude is almost frightening in its reality. Trust me on this. (Oh, and there's the hot sex...)

'The Love Song of Bastard and Idiot' by Pedatrix, RATED NC-17
You know it's Pedatrix; you know it's going to be fun. And it IS. Most assuredly. Severus Snape has been far too chaste for his own good, and it results in certain... problems... cropping up in middle age. Luckily enough, the unflappable Professor Potter is there to assist him...

'A Year and a Day' by Nimori, HARDCORE NC-17, SLAVERY, BDSM, INCEST
(Various pairings: Severus/Harry, Lucius/Harry, Lucius/Draco, Draco/Harry, Voldemort/Harry, Sirius/Harry.) Horrifying, moving, chilling work. I was nearly shaking with the shock of it. Harry is given to Voldemort's Death Eaters for a year and a day of service, before he is given to Voldemort himself. The sharp, serrated images Nimori uses are utterly heart-breaking in their intensity, and the ending has such a brilliant twist that it will leave you no time to catch your breath. This is NOT the usual take on slavery, believe me. Everyone over 17 should read this--it is a very enlightening, surreal, cruel work of art.

'The Sweetest Venom' by Snaples, RATED NC-17
Extremely dark, intensely sexual PWP. Lord Voldemort tightens his connection with Snape, drawing his punishment in diverse and cruel ways. One such punishment, however, backfires...

'A Spell to Turn Tigers to Butter' by Amanuensis, HARDCORE NC-17, NON-CON, CHANSLASH, HEAVY BDSM
Oh my, what a devious, dark, wicked little fic. Well. Not little really. Harry is captured by Voldemort, and as the ultimate humiliation, he is offered as 'shared meat' to two of the Dark Lord's fiercest tigers--Severus Snape and Lucius Malfoy. Only things don't go quite  as planned, and perhaps the little slave isn't as powerless as he appears... This story is almost legendary in its cleverness, its shifting, black humor, its horror and its moments of cruel tenderness. Not a light fic, people.  Stay away if you're not into the heavy stuff, or are incapable of smirking evilly (as I did, at various points in this fic). Perhaps there is a way to destroy Voldemort's ranks from the inside, hmm?

'Gone to Pot' by Sushi, RATED NC-17
A zany, beautiful, sexy and incredibly funny take on the domestic lives of Harry Potter and Severus Snape, twelve years after their union. Severus is ageing gracefully in a way our Harry finds... strangely captivating...

'Rhapsody in Orange Trolleys' by Cybele
Severus and Harry go shopping. Is it a mission doomed to failure, or will Harry's 'romantic plans' of domestic bliss actually work? Peg me for an optimist, but I think they will...
Snape's thoughts on supermarket: 'Confronted with this grotesque den of artifice, moulded, shiny goods with no value whatsoever, Severus realised he was witnessing the end of the world. Armageddon. The fall of man into the deep abyss of consumer evil.'

'What You Get' by Ailei, RATED NC-17
Quote: 'Whores, so many good little boy whores, with aching consciences and malleable mores.'
I feel utterly sinful reccing this gorgeous, perverted PWP... Possibly because I almost always read nothing but plot-rich stories. This, however, is unabashedly sex-crazed work--combining coarse language and smooth elegance in a way so erotic it should be illegal. Snape is an utter, bloody bastard here, cynical and angry and sexual--enough to make you grit your teeth and want to hit him (among other things...). But is Harry truly the innocent one? Who will win this game of power? An ending that'll hit you like a freight train, believe you me!

'Cake and a Cup of Tea' by Cybele, RATED NC-17
Snape's POV. Lovely. 'All the reasons I shouldn�t be doing this with him melt away with the icing and chocolate on my tongue, leaving behind only the traces of sweet abandon. All the reasons this has to happen fill the air around us: because it�s near one in the morning on the last day of July; because I woke up and unwittingly became witness to his sad birthday ritual; because even chamomile inspires strange intimacy.'

'What a Difference a Day Makes' by Millefiori
Quite a cute, warm-hearted fic, which manages to be adorable without being waffy. Starting off immediately on the premise that Severus has accidentally been turned into a hermaphrodite, this story traces the... rather pleasant, if completely unintended, aftershocks of the event. *grin*

'New Coin' by Jacquez
It's Jacquez. That's all you need to know, and my telling you this fic is beautiful is quite redundant after you've seen the author's name. What are the consequences of grief for two soldiers who have fought side by side, and who have now lost their dearest mentor?
Quote: 'His voice broke like a twig underfoot, and he found himself sobbing, helpless once more in front of Severus Snape.'

'How Gilderoy Lockhart Heroically Defeated the Evil in Professor Snape' by Sloane
Excellent, hilarious fic in which Gilderoy Lockhart exploits his natural talents at irritating Severus Snape, sending the Potions master--quite literally--into Harry Potter's arms.

'Something to Write On' by Cybele
I read this story yonks ago, when I first got into the Harry Potter fandom, and it only just occurred to me to rec it--this gorgeous, flirtatious, Cybele-spawned slice of heaven. Harry doesn't know he's supposed to hand in his Potions journal at the end of the year, and writes some... rather personal... things in it. Snape, of course, gets a pleasant surprise.
Quote from Harry's journal: 'Eye-color potion. Black. Like his. Dark and deep and cold. He�s glaring at me. When did that glare start to go directly to my trousers? Christmas dinner. He dropped his fork and I picked it up for him. He glared. Instant erection. I�m a freak.'

'Quill and Ink' by Cybele, RATED NC-17, QUILL!SEX
The steamy sequel to 'Something to Write On'. Snape sets Harry some rather special homework...

'The Bath Story' by Cybele
Oh, oh! *laughs helplessly* Merlin, this is a lovely, completely mad, insanely cute little fic. Harry comes home from a Quidditch match, dirty, sweaty and exhausted, only to make a rather... interesting discovery about his lover. A discovery he would rather not have made.

'Clay' by Kass, RATED NC-17
Golems and undercover operations; hard liquor and Muggle pubs; Kabbalah and meditation; sex and magic. One of the most unique plots I've yet come across, and writing that manages to be both spare and satisfying, both simple and sensual. There is a quiet finesse to it that makes me draw deep, fulfilled breaths. Both Harry and Severus are so deliciously written, physically and spiritually described with loving care. Harry is gratifyingly mature here, and strong, and completely in-character as the emotionally forthright youth. Severus is the cautious older man, both passionate and controlled. They're perfect for each other.

'A Bittersweet Potion' by Alchemia Dent & Bugland
At the risk of sounding trite (which is far more than this tale deserves), this is a bittersweet story of evolving affections. Harry becomes a unique form of Animagus, a kind that can change into any animal. The only problem is, on one of Harry's escapades as a cat, Severus Snape captures him for what is ostensibly a Potions experiment... But nothing, of course, goes the way either of them planned. (DO NOT turn away from this fic because of the cat element! It's beautifully done. My first reaction to the idea was: 'oh, how juvenile', but when I read it I found the dialogue astute, the atmosphere rich and the writing positively delicious with a blend of angst and humor.)

'The Hunted Enchanter' by Rosemary
An elegant, slightly demented and extremely clever parody of Nabokov's 'Lolita', with Severus playing the corrupt comforter--Severus Humbert Humbert Snape. Excellent. Teeters delicately from comedy to tragedy, and back again... There are so many memorable quotes. But here's a hand-picked one:
    'So when he submitted to my caresses, patient interlocutor, when he allowed Snape's rough maw to feast on his own soft lips and the intoxicating smoothness of his thighs, I believe it was not just in gratitude for my continued watchfulness, but because I was the only person left in the world he could give anything to. Let me count my gifts, the soft fluff under his arms, the curve of his instep and the endless roseate pleasures of his backside. The imprint of his teeth on his bottom lip. And then his crystal tears, every night, every night, the moment I feigned sleep. Such a giver, my Harry Potter.'

'First-Time Caller' by Lydia Lovestruck, RATED NC-17
I do enjoy Lydia's fine-trimmed humor, and the lovely, sweet irreverance of her writing which has me chortling and blushing by turns. Harry is so subtly, beautifully written here--a newbie just working up the nerve to call a gay chat line--and, of course, who should be on the other end but...

'A Life More Ordinary' by Lexin
Fascinting insight into the whole 'married with children' deal, only it's Snape and Potter we're talking about... This is a surprisingly genuine fic, and subtly characterized--not at all the ham-fisted job I was dreading due to the MPREG theme. This story takes MPREG *seriously*, and makes it work. All in all, a most rewarding read--with some truly heart-stopping moments of tenderness and, also, terror. (This is a war-time fic.)

'Ten Zillion Points from Gryffindor' by Amanuensis, RATED NC-17
Just the sort of happy, perverted little romp we human beings need now and then. Cleverly written and knuckle-bitingly uproarious, this is a GORGEOUS comedy involving pranks, body paint, an upside-down Snape, much licking, goats and graffiti. Oh, and... DETENTION. *smirk*

'Rain and Wings' by Whippy
A beautiful catalogue of images--strange and convex, rain-drenched and painful. Summary: When Harry's wife dies, he finds more than comfort in an old enemy.

'Sensitive' by Selfilin, RATED NC-17
An intriguing story, in which Harry loses control of his (considerable) magical powers, and only Severus' presence seems to bring them under control. Harry is so incredibly... shaggable... in this story that it's practically a crime, all young-golden-god material, and yet written in a capable, unique and not at all pedestrian way. Very sensual. I love Lolita-esque!Harry, and the stern but secretly sexual Professor Snape. *slurp* Touch and taste are used beautifully here--it is very rare to come across sex written with such rich imagery, and yet suffused with a quiet humor. This is a gentle, champagne-flavored tale.

'Occasional Table' by Pedatrix, RATED NC-17
It's been months since I last read this hilarious, playful story. Severus discovers that he is, in fact, an 'Inanimagus'--he can transfigure into things, instead of animals. Of course, life becomes interesting when he starts to transform into things Harry Potter can get his hands on...

'Crucius' by Dolores Crane, RATED NC-17
Quote: 'The contour of their joined hands was like a fractal fold in space, like a tiny universe, spinning breathlessly in the interstices of this one: never quite escaping, never quite imprisoned.'
The beauty of this strange, dark story is so overwhelming, so perfect, that it catches at my throat like a fish's hook and *cuts*, because, oh God, there isn't enough writing out there like this. It is a quiet knife--slaking both pain and thirst, and it is tender and so, so breakable--fierce and yet carrying a fragile joy. So fragile. Harry's anger, rage even--his desperation--is offset by the gentleness of his love for Severus--and vice versa. Composed in a series of swift, serrated images, I will never forget the progression and climax of this story. Beautiful, beautiful work. To offer a plot summary for this jewel would be unfair. Read it.

'Give And Take' by Merri-Todd Webster, RATED NC-17
A fascinating take on Vampire!Snape, quite elegantly written and very, very, VERY hot. It explains the psychology behind vampire bonding quite well, and Harry's involvement comes off as very emotionally genuine. A satisfying read.

The 'Sins of Omission' Series by Nym, RATED NC-17
This is possibly the most consuming, absorbing SS/HP novel I've ever read--and I've read a LOT of those. It is hard to say this without sounding corny or just plain pathetic, but reading this novel was like being made love to, all night and day long, with words exquisite and tapered and finely trimmed, both weighted and light, like feathers. I repeatedly felt the urge to find Nym and declare myself her slave in every imaginable way, for the more-than-imaginable foreseeable future. There are phrases so beautiful here that I was left catching my breath at moments, heart breaking and mending simultaneously, and yearning--oh God, always yearning--for that is one emotion this work is *suffused* with. Beautifully. To not read this quiet masterpiece is to miss out on what equals a lifetime of reading--lines from this story, moments from it, memories, will haunt you for ages afterwards as if they were your own. As if the thoughts, the touches, the scents and sounds, were part of your own life. Nym, I love you. Love you beyond compare. If you don't write another series I think I might die...

'Compulsion' by Luthien, RATED NC-17
Delicious angst, with a very uniquely done Snape-POV, second-person. Harry, firelight, golden skin and a battle for self-control... And yes, that sound you hear is indeed the sound of me. Panting.

'From Cake to Cauldron' by Sushi
Gorgeously, insanely funny, and enjoyably perverted. The Honeymoon Saga of Harry James Potter and Severus Snape, Presented in LEGOVISION. Yes. That's right. ;)

'Clipped Wings' by Theresa Ann Wymer
An intense, memorable, unique AU. This is so burningly beautiful... You absolutely must read it. The wizarding world has been destroyed by Muggles, and Harry is living in disguise... Then, one day, he chances upon a certain retired Professor--in manacles. At a slave auction. In a world where wizards are robbed of their magic and forced into what could be called slavery, the disguised Mr Potter (a.k.a. Mr Dursley--ex-student of St Brutus') decides to save Snape the only way he knows how. By buying him. (NO, this is NOT the usual slave-fic. It is almost ridiculously beautiful--you must read this!)
'But I always knew when you were near. The air seemed to vibrate, charged with your presence. Something about you seemed to burn into my soul, a wound that never healed...'
- Severus, to Harry.

'The Last Dance' by Sushi, RATED NC-17
In his seventh year, Harry decides he can't put up with the snarky bastard of a Potions master anymore--and starts fighting back. What results is a string of endless detentions with the very man who gets on his nerves, and the results are... somewhat unexpected. (Excellent fic, this. Dancing lessons and necromancy and grief and joy and snarking... Unmissable.)

'Marching Off To War'|>>|'Home Fires'|>>|'Civil War' by Sushi, RATED NC-17
One of the most remarkable, memorable Severus/Harry series ever written. Make sure to read them in the order they are linked above. Angst, humor, romance and smut combine to make this a truly addictive read.
Summary: As Lord Voldemort's power swells, threatening to crush the souls of all who oppose him, two bitter enemies seek solace from a most unexpected source.

'Lest I Wither' by JiM
Infused with a cool, delicious humor and a slowly-building romance of the finest kind, this story is well worth the read. Harry gets poisoned and only Snape can find the antidote... (Sounds horrid and angsty and pedestrian, but it isn't.)

'Pale Green' by torch
'The stroking finger left Harry's throat, and it felt like a reverse burn, cool air coming in to freeze all the places Snape had touched. Deep inside, he was shaking.' Vividly erotic. My pulse is still racing. READ IT.

'The Courtship of Harry Potter' by Diana, RATED NC-17
A comedy of errors--and romance. Giggle-inspiring, warm-hearted and erotic by turns, this is a rare find. In this AU, the wizarding world follows the ancient Greek tradition of pederasty--where a younger man often takes an older wizard as a lover/mentor. Harry is pursued by two suitors--the good-looking and unctuous Professor Worme, and of course... the much less romantic Professor Snape. Who will he choose? There's nothing like a little healthy competition... *chuckle*

'The Tea Series' by Telanu
Snape is not a monster. He is not. At least that's what he tries desperately to believe, despite his growing obsession with an underage
student. One by the name of Harry Potter. This is a slash classic, with such beautiful characterization and such a flawless use of first-person POVs that you'll be stunned. In the good way.

'The Challenge', by Cybele, RATED NC-17
Snape becomes the target of seventh-year mayhem--and a Shakespearian sonnet recited by none other than Harry Potter. Merlin help them both! Note: you must read every one of Cybele's stories, actually.

'Fine Lines' by Shadowphoenix
One of my favorite Severus/Harry novels of all time. Harry is living in the Muggle world after losing his memory, and a certain Professor is sent undercover, to bring Harry back... The altercations Severus has with various Muggle appliances are WONDERFULLY funny, and I still find myself chuckling at the memories. Of course, there is a lovely touch of angst as well, keeping the flowering friendship--and more--between Severus and Harry always on a blooming cusp. Lovely.

'If You Are Prepared' by Cybele, RATED NC-17 FOR SOME CHAPTERS
First in a series of one of the most brilliant S/H stories in HP fandom. Cybele is an accomplished author (all of her stories are worth reading)--and in this fic she manages to combine her considerable talent for dialogue with some beautiful Snape-snarking, emotive perception and humour. Snape's growing desire for Harry, and his futile resistance to it, is absolutely hilarious. However, the series becomes darker as it nears its end, and the angst, like the humor, is superb. Eventually it culminates in such a heartbreaking ending that you'll be left crying, shaking... for days.

'Season of Healing' by Lady Dien
Dien is a cruel, cruel woman--after writing a fic of such brilliance--filled with delicate sensitivity and the loveliest, lightest humor--to NOT BLOODY UPDATE!!! Aaargh! But this is WIP worth reading. Please do read and review her work, and maybe she'll update sooner...

'A Good Buy' by Minx, RATED NC-17
Wonderfully written--light-hearted and angsty and intimate by turns. The Gryffindors hold a fund-raising slave-auction (nothing serious, of course) and who should buy Harry but his most-hated Potions master? But things don't go as planned, and over the quiet evenings of chopping shrivelfigs as Snape's slave, Harry begins to realize that his Professor isn't quite as bad as he'd like people to believe...

'Primer to the Dark Arts' by Icarus
Icarus writes some of the best slash on the internet. This much is true. Read this novel and be amazed... That it is indeed possible to pull of a Harry/Ron AND a Severus/Harry, at the same time. Harry gets some much-needed tutoring in the Dark Arts, with his most hated professor... But the tutoring slowly blossoms into something else--something warm, something beautiful--and something that might save them both.

'The Familiar' by Resonant, RATED NC-17
After reading all those angsty S/H fics (don't get me wrong, I love angst) it's a miracle to come across one with as exquisitely light a touch as this one. It has the kind of finely measured, deadpan humour that makes you chuckle quietly even as you appreciate the wordplay. Really worth it. (An accident in the seventh-year Potions class leads to Snape acquiring a new familiar...)

'The Medean Curse: A Romantic Comedy' by Lydia Lovestruck, RATED NC-17
Absolutely brilliant--gets even better as it progresses. Harry's got a... uh... problem, and only Snape can brew the potion to save him... (Sounds cliche, but it's brilliant. Believe me. Quite sweet and romantic, in an utterly non-fluff way. Gives me a whole lot of ideas about a Harry Potter Dating Service, actually... You'll see what I mean. Snape gets a make-over! One of the most original Sev/Har fics around.)

'Drunken Domesticity' by Icarus
Oh, so sweet and beautiful! And *incredibly* funny! I wish I could pick out a few precious jewels of humor, but the entire story *glitters* with them, and it would be an impossible task to choose examples. There is a tender and warm-hearted sensitivity behind each statement, each turn of dialogue, each glance. That is exquisite. Severus and Harry have one of their lovers' spats, and Ron has to take care of a drunk Harry until Severus returns to make up...

'Wayside' by VerityEmory
"The person underneath - where does he go? Does he slip by the wayside--or does he just die?" A satisfyingly strange, reflective, angsty little piece. An ending both wistful and sweet.

'J'ai Oublier' by GothLupin
This is one hell of a disturbing fic, with a twist at the end that will leave you trembling in disbelief... Won't spoil it for you by giving the summary. It's starts out innocently enough... But the crime of love is forgetting.

Gilderoy/Harry, Implied Severus/Harry
'Breathe Bloom' by Calliopiea
A very, very strange story... Extremely perceptive and subtle, and rather lovely. Harry visits the amnesiac Gilderoy Lockhart at St Mungo's for his sixth-year Community Service... But he ends up confiding his own feelings and, for a while, forgetting the grief he feels over Severus' death.

'If That Mockingbird Won't Sing' by Aspen, RATED NC-17
Yet another PWP from the Goddess of PWPs, Aspen. This is actually probably the 50th time I've read this story, and it never fails to make me ache with the quality of its writing, and the sheer, depraved, delicious decadence of Headmaster Snape and the sinfully young, succubus-like innocence of Harry Potter. Really. Don't read it if you don't like chanslash, or you'll be squicked beyond belief.

'Szajha' by Calliopiea
I stumbled across this story by sheer chance--and God, what chance it was--what fortune! This is such an exquisitely crafted, ORIGINAL story... Serpentine and glittering in its grace. Calliopiea's use of words is sheer brilliance--an intellectual aphrodisiac if there ever was one. I have fallen sincerely and *deeply* in love with this novel... I cannot express to you how deeply, how helplessly...

'The Unhappiest Potions Master on Earth' by Diana
Hilarious, finely trimmed humor with just the right dose of domestic bliss and torment (but they're the same things, aren't they?). A few of the academic staff of Hogwarts (Albus, Severus, Harry, Ron and Hermione) are escorting a group of students to a Muggle amusement park. An American amusement park. Hilarity ensues, as Severus tries to survive Muggle appliances, American junk food, Albus' sing-a-longs and his husband's rather delicious ideas of what to do in a Jacuzzi.

'He Defines Me' by P.O.E.
A very disturbing tale, rated a strong R. An AU story in which Voldemort successfully captured Harry after killing Lily and James--and has brought Harry up as his 'pet'. When Severus finally frees the fifteen-year-old--who is both a tempting succubus and a hapless innocent after years in Voldemort's care--the dynamics of the situation begin to change. An incredibly insightful and unnerving look into the psychology of abuse, and what defines innocence. WARNING: EXTREME CHAN, KINK, SLAVERY.

'The Epilogue of Severus Snape' by Sinistral
Severus documents his final days. PG. And vocabulary to die for--sentences so beautifully put together they're lickable. Er.

'Dirty Story' by Pedatrix, RATED NC-17, KINK
Xiomara Hooch is entirely responsible for Severus Snape's slide into hormone-induced insanity when she tells him to oversee the Quidditch changing rooms after a Gryffindor match... Shower-kink and... um... underwear-kink? You'll understand. Rather mild perviness compared to other work by this author, but rewarding and humorous nevertheless. Warm-hearted and charming, and not for the clean-minded.

'Le Lion au Serpent' by Snaples
Lovely slow build here, with some vampire action. Harry left the magical world for the Muggle world, only to be called back by Dumbledore. He and Snape must work together, despite their mutual hatred... or is it hatred? Very elegantly written and VERY addictive.

'Oh, Just This Once'|>>|'Your Horoscope For Today' by Telanu
Lovely, finely-balanced and warm-hearted work from the unsurpassable Telanu.

'A Perfect Circle' by gwendolyn_flight, RATED NC-17, NON-CON
Truly a frightening and erotic tale, in which Harry makes a deal with the devil. The devil, of course, is none other than the cold-hearted, black-clad Snape. Has sequels. WARNING: Heavy non-con.

'Through A Glass, Darkly' by Lexin, RATED NC-17, CHAN-SLASH
My favorite SS/HP AU fic. Very dark, very elegant--based in a universe where Voldemort was already ruling the world when Harry entered Hogwarts. Under the Dark Lord's influence, Hogwarts is hardly a moral high-ground--it is instead a brutal, all-boys boarding school where use and abuse are ritualized, and nothing is safe for a young boy like Harry... Until he is 'given' to one of the Professors...

'Change' by Nym, RATED NC-17
Who could have thought that spare change, of all things, could hold such deep emotional and erotic meaning? Don't be fooled by the simple title--this is a wonderful and aching story. Harry (as an adult) uses some spare change to call Severus on a Muggle phone... and their ensuing conversation drags up some precious memories. The summary sucks, but do give the story a try.