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Fanfic / The Boy Who Died A Lot

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Harry’s always been known as The Boy Who Lived. Only Severus knows that this is a lie. After Harry Potter dies in his first year during his detention in the Forbidden Forest, Severus Snape is given the time-turner to prevent his death. But messing with time and death has its price and the universe seeks to correct it. In the meanwhile Snape has to deal with Harry's adventures and somehow keep him alive.

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Tropes:

  • Acquired Poison Immunity: Snape basically mind-rapes Harry with a Dark spell to make Harry immune to the Imperius curse.
    • Snape grows immune to the Lust-Dampening Potion.
  • Action Survivor: Both Snape and Harry.
  • Adults Are Useless: Played with, as Snape is the only thing ensuring that Harry survives into adulthood and basically cleans up Harry's mistakes. It's played straight for the rest of the faculty because neither Snape nor Harry would willingly involve them.
  • Adult Fear: None of the decisions you make are truly your decisions. Every outcome is decided for you and going against it would mean your death.
  • All Animals Are Domesticated: Averted; when Harry got too close to Buckbeak the first time, he was attacked and killed. Snape drugs Buckbeak to be more docile.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Snape never got over Lily's rejection and death and later develops feelings for an older Harry, while Harry didn't realize he had a crush on Cedric before it was too late.
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  • Anxiety Dreams/Bad Dreams: Snape gets continuous dreams of Lily dying, which later change to Harry dying in them.
  • Armor-Piercing Question:
    Snape: Three hours from now, the Dark Lord will kill Harry Potter and rise again! Is that a future you wish to protect?
    Firenze: Mars is unusually bright tonight. It is written.
    Snape: You don’t believe that. You never have and you never will. You’re not like the rest of your kind, or you would never have assisted me last year. Mark my words, now: I will keep this from happening, with or without your help.
  • Balancing Death's Books: Because Snape prevented Harry's death in the Forbidden Forest, the universe tries to correct itself by killing Harry in many Undignified Deaths that Snape undoes each time with the Time-Turner. Firenze warned Snape that this would happen before he saved Harry the first time.
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  • Bathe Her and Bring Her to Me: Snape asks Voldemort to give him Draco after he kills Dumbledore to spare Draco from getting killed for his failure. He regrets this when he finds a terrified Draco in his bed and he earns the ire of the Malfoys.
  • Been There, Shaped History: Harry's absurd luck throughout the books is actually Snape manipulating events behind the scenes so Harry would live. The first being when Severus convinces Firenze to perform his Big Damn Heroes.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil: After Harry nearly kills Draco with Sectumsempra, Snape fears that Harry is slowly turning Dark due to Severus mind-raping him with Legilimency.
  • Black Comedy: The first half of story is darkly comic with Snape complaining and undoing Harry's various deaths.
  • Blessed with Suck: Snape is given the power to undo any mistake, but it is only centered around one person and he has to live with the emotional fallout of watching someone die constantly.
  • Blood Magic: Through Harry's blood, Snape can track Harry. It is also very Dark magic.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Snape ends up slowly falling in love with Harry after the fifth year.
  • Brainwashing for the Greater Good: Played with; while the brainwashing of Harry helps him move past his grief and suicidal thoughts, Snape only did it so Harry would forget that he came out and confessed his feelings for Snape.
  • Broken Pedestal: Snape is so horrified that Dumbledore is willing to let Harry die to get rid of the Horcrux that Snape kills him in anger.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: See Broken Pedestal.
  • Cassandra Truth: After Ron accidentally kills Harry by exploding his lungs, Snape tries to convince the faculty to replace Ron's wand as he tells them it is dangerous and likely to get others killed. They don't believe him or think he's over-exaggerating. Or when he tries to find out who sabotages the bludger, he gets accused of being the saboteur.
  • Celibate Hero: Enforced by Severus himself; he gives himself the Lust-Dampening Potion to mute his libido.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: After the Goblet of Fire arc, the fic becomes less funny and more dramatic.
  • Character Development: Slowly, Snape slowly begins to develop empathy.
  • Children Are Innocent: Subverted, Snape does not believe in this in the least.
  • Coming-Out Story: Harry comes out to Snape in fifth year after the man had been counseling him for awhile. Only for Snape to take it really, really badly.
  • Cooldown Hug: After convincing Harry to not commit suicide, Harry grabs on to Snape and breaks down. Snape awkwardly consoles him since he doesn't understand physical affection.
  • Crack Fic: The story's basis was a crack fic, only developing Cerebus Syndrome during 4th year when the author decided to expand the concept.
  • Crazy-Prepared:
    McGonagall: I don’t suppose you’d care to explain to me how you came by Mr Potter’s blood?
  • Cure Your Gays: Snape oblivates Harry after Harry kisses him and confesses his love for him. He makes Harry forget that he came out to Snape and rewrites his mind for the latter to become attracted to girls.
  • Dark Humor: Very dark, as the first half of the story plays Harry's death as comedy.
  • Darkest Hour: After Harry dies for the first time, while everyone is mourning or traumatized over his death, Snape points out that this means Voldemort's back and now they're screwed because the only person that can stop him is dead.
  • Death by Falling Over: Harry dies several times because of this: the first time was because the stairs moved right before he reached the stop step. The second time was when he trips over his shoelaces after kissing Ginny.
  • Death Is Cheap: With the time-turner, Snape enforces this trope for Harry.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Snape slowly defrosts for Harry.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Harry crosses this in the summer after the Triwizard tournament, without Snape's interference, the trauma over Cedric's death, the defamation of his reputation by the Ministry, his torture under Umbridge, and missing Quiddich tryouts become too much for Harry and he takes his own life.
    • Snape himself starts to cross this when he Oblivates Harry into forgetting his coming out and fully crosses it when Harry goes on the run and Snape alienates all his allies.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: The universe literally wants Harry dead.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Male on Male: In fourth year, Draco cast the Imperius curse on Harry and ordered him to give him oral sex as a joke. Draco is terrified when Harry complies and accidentally kills him to get away. Snape is horrified at Draco and when he undoes it, he gives the Slytherins a lecture on consent.
  • Downer Beginning: "The first time Harry Potter died, he was eleven years old."
  • Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: Snape notices Harry's eyes are dull and lifeless after Cedric's death.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Snape has to cross the Despair Event Horizon and the alienation of his allies in order to fulfill Dumbledore's wishes and to protect Harry before he finally gets to live.
  • Eating the Eye Candy: Snape is horrified when he realizes that Harry is all grown up and is actually quite good looking.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: Snape is horrified that Draco would use an Unforgivable as a joke.
  • Gayngst: Harry starts to have this when he realizes that he had feelings for Cedric but didn't understand until it was too late.
  • Gone Horribly Right:
    • Snape, against his nature, lends a helping hand and a shoulder to cry on when Harry was suicidal and protects him from Umbridge by reassigning the detentions. Harry ends up falling in love with him, to Snape's horror.
    • Snape thinks he did this when Harry casts the Sectumsempra curse on Draco due to deliberately tampering with Harry's mind during his Occulmency training.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Snape.
  • Laser-Guided Tyke-Bomb: Snape started out viewing Harry as this when he's not being a trouble-maker and doesn't forget to remind Dumbledore of this.
  • Driven to Suicide: Harry throws himself off the Astronomy tower.
  • Plot Allergy: Harry died twice due to an incense Trelawney bought.
  • Slashed Throat: Harry's first death was due to Quirellmort slashing his throat after the former spotted him drinking unicorn's blood.
  • Undignified Death: Many, many of Harry's deaths.
  • When Trees Attack: How Harry dies the second time, the Whomping Willow caves in the roof of the Ford Anglia, killing both Ron and Harry.
  • Misery Builds Character: Up to a point, Snape's constant misery and later heartbreak slowly gain empathy. Subverted with Harry, due to untreated PTSD from Cedric's death and torture under Umbridge drive him to take his life.
  • Only One Me Allowed Right Now: When Snape time-travels, he exists independently of the other Snape until the loop closes with both Snapes merging into one Snape.
  • Our Time Travel Is Different: Since the Time-Turner is out of commission, it allows for more flexibility and actually allows for timeline changes as opposed to causing a Stable Time Loop.
  • Out with a Bang: A nonsexual variant in which Harry trips on his shoelaces and fall down the stairs after kissing Ginny.
  • Peggy Sue: Snape.
  • Plot Armor: Played with; to Snape's annoyance, the only time Harry is the least likely to die is when he's fighting Voldemort.
  • Stable Time Loop: Discussed Trope, what Snape feared what would happen at first, but the other time-turner does let him change time.
  • Suicide Is Painless
  • Suppressed Rage: Snape has oodles of it.
  • Stepford Snarker: The more things go wrong and as Snape begins to care, Snape's snark becomes a defense mechanism and a mask so he won't fall apart from despair.
  • Stupid Sexy Flanders: Harry grows up very nicely, much to Snape's ire.
  • Sympathy for the Hero: Snape initially hated Harry and no sympathy for him the first three years. It isn't until Voldemort's revival during the maze challenge that Snape develops a sense of empathy.
  • The Talk: After stumbling upon to the aftermath of Draco attempting the Imperius on Harry, Snape rewinds time and makes sure that the Slytherins know that it's not ambitious to use mind-control or trickery for sex.
  • Talking Down the Suicidal: Snape successfully stops Harry from jumping off the Astronomy Tower by talking him down and threatening to jump off with him.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Snape and Harry decide to give each other a chance after they both survive the Battle of Hogwarts and after Harry graduated.
  • Tempting Fate: Snape thought after Harry survives his confrontation with Quirrelmort without his assistance that he was done and he wasn't going to be needed again.
  • That Didn't Happen
  • There Are No Therapists: Snape tries to help Harry by counseling him himself, but it doesn't really help in the long run as Snape ends up undoing his own efforts.
  • Trauma Conga Line: The years were not kind to Snape.
  • Unrequited Love Switcheroo: Harry falls in love with Snape after he started counseling him for his suicidal tendencies and protected him from Umbridge. After Snape oblivates Harry to forget his feelings, Snape begins to fall for Harry, much to his ire.
  • Unscrupulous Hero: While Snape's goal of preventing Harry's death is noble, he did it only because he initially saw Harry as a valuable pawn and does many unethical things to ensure his desired outcome. As he grows to care for Harry as a person, he slowly comes to realize the severity of his actions.
  • Was Too Hard on Him: Snape regrets how he treated Harry after he commits suicide.
  • Weak-Willed: Before Snape's intervention, it is actually extremely easy for Harry to fall under the control of the Imperius.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Snape admits to himself and to Harry that Harry is a better person than he gives him credit for.
  • You Are Not Alone: Snape goes against his nature to help and support Harry when the latter was suicidal. He even makes sure that Harry gets counseling and doesn't get detention from Umbridge.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: The entire fic is about Snape trying to prevent Harry's fated death and the universe's attempts to correct it.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Snape nearly meets his end when Voldemort attempts to kill him to gain ownership of the Elder Wand.
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