Severus was hurt and confused. Why would Harry do that? He was obviously affected by the short stay in Azkaban. He also seemed reluctant to let him talk. Maybe having that Mind Healer would be beneficial all around.
Severus fumed that his plans got foiled. He couldn’t be with Harry at all. Now that he dropped Potions, Severus doubted he would ever see the brat.
“Minerva, what do I do?” Severus asked.
“I don’t know. I was just as surprised as you were when he rejected your proposal. Maybe he just needs some time. That and the Mind Healer will do him some good.” Minerva answered.
Severus nodded. “That’s what I was thinking as well. Thank you. Good night.”
“It will all work out you will see.”
Severus very much doubted that, but did not argue. He went back down to his quarters. He contemplated on what his next steps should be. He would back off for a while. Then he would tentatively reach out to Harry and try again.
He needed to change his act. He needed to explain to Harry why he acted the way he did. He doubted the boy would believe him, but he would keep explaining it until he did. He loved Harry, there was nothing that would stop him now. He would show Harry how much he loved him, how much he deserved to be loved and that he was being truthful about it. He would show him that no one else mattered as long as they had each other. He would show Harry that life was worth living. He had to see the spark back in Harry’s eyes.
When Harry had left, a wave of regret and dejected feeling flowed through him. It was the most awful thing Severus ever experienced. He couldn’t bear to see the empty eyes of his one true love. It was beyond painful to witness.
Severus did indeed step back. He watch Harry from afar though. He couldn’t not do so. He still loved him.
He also changed how he acted. He was still stern because potions were dangerous, but he was kinder and more gentle when students made a mistake. He smiled more. He was more approachable. He even offered extra tutoring for those who needed it. Little by little the students began to accept this new change with welcome arms. At first it was difficult, but when they realized Severus wasn't trying to trick them, they relaxed.
He watched Harry go through the motions, barely living. There was no spark. It was all too heartbreaking. What was he going to do? He made sure that Harry was going to his Mind Healing sessions. He made sure the Headmaster was aware that he might be suicidal. He couldn't lose Harry. Not now. Not when they could have a future together.
After a few weeks, Severus decided to start trying to talk to Harry again. Harry was difficult to find. Severus couldn’t be alone with him, but Harry made sure never to cross paths with him. Severus kept trying though. He had to get Harry to talk to him. To get him to listen. He was getting desperate.
He contacted the Mind Healer who was helping Harry, just trying to find ways that Harry might accept a chat with him. The Mind Healer told him to try writing a letter, but it came back unopened. So the Mind Healer told him that he would work with Harry to get him to a place where they could have a joint session.
Severus was glad he would get a chance, but unfortunately that meant more waiting. Severus was not particularly patient about this. He hated knowing that Harry thought he hated him. That Harry was avoiding him. That Harry barely even looked at him. It was torture.
He just wanted a chance. He hoped he got one.