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It was a hot, cloudy afternoon in Spinner's end, and the streets were stewing in the unseasonable warmth. Severus and his mother were sitting in the back garden – a thin strip of yellowing grass between two red-brick walls, with a splintered wooden fence leading onto an alleyway at the back.

There was a washing-line suspended between the two brick-walls, and Eileen Snape was pegging sheets, shirts and socks over it. She had draped a shawl across her bony shoulders, but it was trailing loose at one end. It always did. She didn’t notice the world outside her head very much anymore.

Her forehead was furrowed with resentment, and she was gnawing on her lips. It was the expression she always wore when she was dredging up all her most painful memories – and sometimes, she found it difficult to see her son through the resulting mud.

The past would never stay buried, not with Eileen Snape. It got up out of its grave and lurched around her, groaning and stinking, and clamoring for her attention. Sometimes, Severus thought she couldn’t even see him. She looked right through him, as though he was the memory.  

Severus was sitting on the upturned laundry basket, relishing the quiet. He liked watching the neighbours walk past in the alleyway outside. His mother had told him there were wizards everywhere in the muggle world - walking around in disguise, hiding their talents, talking in code, identifying one another with secret handshakes - and Severus was playing a game where he guessed which of the many passers-by might have a connection to the magical world. Not that group of guffawing boys wheeling their bicycles beside them, that was for sure - though they might have some troll ancestry some way back.   

They watched a young woman walking past the fence. She had a round, pretty face, and was wearing a short, brown dress under her coat. Every time Severus remembered Spinner’s end, it was in these muted tones of brown, or beige, or orange. The carpet in the living room was patterned with beige-and-cream swirls, like chestnut puree stirred into ice-cream. The exposed filaments in the electric fire glowed a demonic orange, and started humming at random intervals, as though it needed to fill up the silence that frequently descended in the living room, when there was no shouting.

And there were those three brown ducks on the yellow wallpaper, always mocking Severus with their suspended animation, their perpetually postponed escape.

One of the first times he’d ever performed magic, he had animated those ducks and made them zoom, head-long, out the living-room window. They’d been trying for so long; it was only fair that they should get their freedom in the end.

He still didn’t know where they’d ended up. He’d briefly indulged in fantasies about using them as his own private, winged army – pecking out the eyes of those dim-witted muggle children in the playground, and flying off with their sweets.

Still smoothing down the linen on the washing line, Eileen watched the round-faced girl walk past with her eyebrows raised.

“That’s Mrs. Johnson’s daughter, from number Six,” she muttered. “According to Mrs. Reynolds, she’s no better than she should be.”  

Severus thought about this. “How good should she be?” he asked.

“It’s an expression, Severus.”

“A muggle expression or a wizard expression?” he persisted, wondering whether he should make a mental note to use it or avoid it.

“Keep your voice down.”

Severus thought this reply was pretty spurious. He knew for a fact that his voice was down. He never said anything louder than it needed to be, simply because he had such a deep-seated dread of drawing attention to himself. What his mother really meant when she said ‘keep your voice down’ was ‘be quiet’. Still, she hadn’t said ‘be quiet’, which, in Severus’ mind, meant he still technically had permission to ask questions.

Even as a six year-old, he was good at finding the loop-holes in other people’s arguments.

“Tell me some wizard proverbs,” he said, as softly as he could.

Eileen Snape gave him an exasperated half-smile, glanced over her shoulder, back towards the house, and then walked over and picked him up. Balancing the skinny boy on her hip, she raised his ear to the level of her mouth, so that she could speak in whispers. She walked up and down the garden with him like this, and Severus had a vague notion that she used to do this when he was very small. Talk of the wizard world was always guaranteed to calm him down or make him behave.

“There’s ‘Don’t count your dragons before they’re hatched’,” she murmured, as though she was reciting a secret incantation. “And ‘No use crying over Spilt Potion’.”

Severus, who had heard the muggle equivalents of these proverbs before, giggled delightedly.

He listened to his mother talk, torn between happiness and dread. The look in her eyes was sharpened somehow – not misted over with resentment anymore, but glistening with pain instead. He knew it made her unhappy to talk about the wizarding world, because she missed it so much, but the times when she was talking about it were the only moments when she ever looked at him.

But there was something else, too. If dad came out and heard them talking like this, there would be ‘trouble’. Severus knew a million definitions of the word ‘trouble’, but they all hurt. Sometimes, the pain would be sharp and immediate, like the kind you’d get from a slap, and sometimes it would be subtle and gnawing, like the kind you get from watching your mother cry.

Trouble never, ever meant a trip to the sweet shop or a nice drive through the countryside. Unless it was a drive through the countryside to the hospital.  

“And there are rhymes about what your wand prefigures for your future,” she went on, in that same happy but oddly strangled voice. “You see, witches and wizards have wands made out of different types of wood, and there are folk beliefs about what each one says about the wizard who holds it.” And she recited, in a dreamy voice:

“Wand of willow, tears on the pillow;
Wand of oak, he’ll frighten folk;
Wand of larch, or wand of rowan,
Quidditch players aren’t uncommon,
But if he has a wand of pine,
He’ll be remembered for all time.”

“What’s your wand made out of?” Severus asked instantly.

Eileen hesitated. “That’s not important.”

“It’s willow, isn’t it?”

“Don’t be clever, darling.”

Severus stopped to consider this advice. “I thought it was a good thing to be clever.”

“It is, as long as you don’t let anyone know that you are.”

“What’s the point of being clever if no-one’s allowed to know about it?” he asked peevishly – but he stopped, because his mother’s eyes were starting to mist over again. He recognized that withdrawn look – it meant she was leaving him – so he pulled himself back from that line of questioning. He put the cleverness to one side, vowing to pick it up again later, and tried to think of something innocent to ask.

“When do I get a wand?”

“Not ‘till you’re eleven.”

“But I’m definitely getting one, right?”

Eileen Snape gave him a rare smile. “The way you made my good china fly out of the living room window yesterday, I’d say you’re definitely getting one, yes.”

Snape smiled. He liked making things fly. He did it almost absent-mindedly, whenever he was staring out of the window at the rain-lashed suburban streets. It was therapeutic, and not just because it frequently led to things getting smashed.        

There was an empty whisky-bottle half-buried in the grass at the end of the garden, and the sight of it wiped the smile off his face instantly. It would have been nice to think that it had been thrown over the fence by some passer-by, but Severus knew better. His father even kept bottles wedged in between the books on the book-shelf, as though he was trying to neutralize the threat of ‘Advanced Potion-Making’ or ‘The Tales of Beedle the Bard’, by placing grim reminders of the muggle world right next to them.  

As if Severus needed any reminders.

Snape had taken the bottle out when he was five, and tasted some of the foul, searing-hot, liquorice-flavoured liquid inside. He’d dropped the bottle, coughing and spluttering with shock, and it had spilled all over the carpet, and all over his grey T-Shirt and tattered jeans. When his dad had come home, he’d been more angry than Severus had ever seen him before. He’d cradled the empty bottle in his arms as though it were a lost child.

Eileen Snape had immediately run him a bath, and scrubbed him till his skin was raw, trying to get the stink of the alcohol off him. It was nearly Christmas, so her longing for the wizard world was at its most intense, and her depression at its lowest ebb. She talked bitterly about her husband “and his muggle poison.” Severus was in a cold dread all evening that his father would creep up the stairs and overhear her. But he never crept anywhere. That was the only good thing about him: you always knew when he was coming.

They had stayed in the bathroom until Snape’s skin was crinkled. His mother had taken an unnaturally long time drying and dressing him, as though she was polishing the best silver-ware. They both knew that, as soon as they strayed out of the bathroom, there was going to be ‘trouble’ – Severus had a feeling that all the definitions of ‘trouble’ he’d ever learned would hardly cover it. The bathroom was their sanctuary, like the safe place in a game of tag, but they couldn’t stay there forever.

“Mum,” Severus had whispered, as she was buttoning up his pyjama-shirt. “Let’s run away! You could magic him to sleep, I know where your wand is.”

“He’d just be angrier when he woke up,” she muttered.

“But we wouldn’t be there!” Severus insisted. “We could escape!”

“Where to?”

“To the wizards,” he replied impatiently, as though this was the most obvious thing in the world.  

“You don’t understand,” Eileen moaned, running a distracted hand through her hair. “They don’t want me back! They won’t want you, either, after what I did.” She stopped to steady her voice and smooth down his wet hair. “You’ll have to make them want you,” she added, in the same hushed, reverent tones she always used when talking about the wizard world, “by working hard, and being clever, and making friends with the right people.”

Severus was silent for a moment, staring at his bare feet against the cracked tiles on the bathroom floor. “Alright,” he said at last. “I will. And, when I’ve made them want me, they’ll want you too, right?"

Eileen turned her face away, but Severus kept on talking stubbornly.

"And then we can escape. And forget any of this ever happened.”

“Just be quiet now,” his mother said, in a flat, defeated voice. “It will be alright.”

Severus longed to question the logic of this statement, but he stopped himself. Sometimes, being clever really didn’t do any good.       

Eileen had clearly hoped to avoid an argument by putting him straight to bed, even though it was five in the afternoon. Severus hadn’t protested. He always did everything in his power to avoid an argument. But he knew he was under suspended sentence. He lay under the covers, watching the daylight filtering through a chink in the curtains, and waited for his father’s anger to catch up to him. He could hear the shouts and laughter of other children playing in the street outside, and, all at once, from nowhere, without passing through annoyance or dislike on the way, he hated them. He hated everything about them. It was a rush of feeling that almost made him throw up. He didn’t understand why they got to be outside playing, while he was lying in bed, waiting for what his father eloquently described as ‘a good thrashing’. What had they done that he hadn’t? He’d seen them in the school play-ground. They pushed each other off steps for fun; they stuck chalk up their noses; they ate worms, for God’s sake! It wasn’t fair!

He’d been dragged out of bed just as the other children were being called in for their dinners. But he couldn’t remember anything after that.   

It was this episode that had caused Snape to be so fascinated with Potions. He wanted to understand why the liquid in his father’s bottle had meant so much to him; why he loved it more than his wife and son.

This was the first idea – that potions could command love, and loyalty, and respect – that they were powerful. And, as with all powerful things, you had to get on the right side of them.

The second idea was that he'd made a promise to his mother to be a great wizard. He could pull her out of this muggle slum, and out of the clutches of the gin-soaked gorilla she'd married, if he worked hard.

Eileen Snape didn’t keep many potion ingredients in the house, but Severus had her books (whisky-stained now, and later to be covered with spidery-writing, as he developed his own spells and theories, and sank deeper into dark magic and despair). He spent afternoons out by the canal, looking for wolf-spiders, aconite, or dead bees.

The dead bees were never a problem. Most things died by the canal-side, as though it was a place of pilgrimage for sick animals. He'd seen dead foxes, dead cats, dead hedgehogs (their quills weren't as good for Potions as Knarl quills, but they were often used as a cheap substitute). Snape was at ease with death. A lot of harm came from the living, but the dead tended to mind their own business, and Severus liked creatures that minded their own business.  

He wondered whether potion-brewing could be traced. His mother had said that the Ministry of Magic put a Trace on under-age wizards, so that they always knew when they were performing magic out of school, but potion-making was just putting things into a cauldron. Surely even a muggle could do it?

That was the third thing that attracted Severus Snape to Potions. It didn’t sort the wizards from the muggles; it sorted the clever people from the idiots. And this was a far more exclusive club to belong to. Magic was everywhere, but common-sense was rare as diamonds.    

Still, he’d brewed the potions in his bedroom, just the same – that way the Ministry of Magic would assume it was Eileen Snape who was performing the magic.

It was probably the only magic they’d ever monitored in her house since she’d married.

He liked being busy. It provided a focus for his anger. And he could escape into the Potion books - where everything was logical - where power was just a matter of paying attention and following guidelines, and had nothing to do with people.

And, as he worked, he learned that it was magic, in a far more subtle way than he’d realized. There was no wand-waving or dragon-taming, no loud bangs or disappearances (well, there were disappearances, of course, but the sinister kind – the kind you get from turning a human body into a puddle of liquid on the floor).  

The potion reacted to his moods and his intentions. It took the impression of his thoughts. He was infusing these ingredients with magic as he brewed them. A muggle couldn’t have made these potions, after all. He could have measured out the ingredients, thrown them into a cauldron, and stirred counter-clockwise until he was blue in the face, but they wouldn’t have become poisons, or truth-serums, or love-potions. It took magic – and thoughtful, logical magic at that – to transfigure these ingredients into a working potion – into a liquid draught of intentions.

For the first time in his life, Severus Snape felt in control of something. Watching the shimmering fumes evaporating from the small cauldron he’d set up on his bedroom floor, he felt calm and confident.     

Potions were not unreasonable or erratic like humans. You could predict the way they’d behave. Simply learn their properties, and their combinations, and you had a formula for predictable chaos. It was complicated, but not conscious.  

As a teenager, when he wanted to impress girls or beat Potter, he would go back to hexes and charms and transfiguration – and they were all fine, but they rewarded confidence, and strength of feeling, not intelligence and subtlety. Severus had strength of feeling, but he didn’t like putting it on display. It made him vulnerable. Showing people you cared about something was like handing them a manual on how to hurt you, with the important passages underlined in bright red ink. But Potions couldn’t betray your feelings – only your thoughts. And he was seldom ashamed of his thoughts.
Just a short flash-back to Sev's childhood, because I've been suffering such terrible writer's block about the main story lately! I know I've left Lily soulless - and Snape shirtless - in the Viceberg, (I can never get writer's block at peaceful points in the story - perhaps because there aren't any!) but I will come back to them, I promise. :)
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:iconkvasii:
Kvasii Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2016
This was lovely to revisit! I see there's a lot of reading in your gallery to catch up on as soon as I have more time on my hands :p 
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:icongryffgirl:
Gryffgirl Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2013
I love your writing style.  So evocative of the poverty and the dreamy mind of the child, tempered by the bitterness of his mother (who is not yet so far gone that she cannot share some good thoughts and spells with him).  Lovely work.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2013
Thank you! :hug: I'm so happy you liked it! (Sorry I'm not on DA very much these days - since finishing Sympathetic Magic, I started posting an original fic on Livejournal, and I kind of spend most of my time there now! I miss writing about Sev and Lily, though!)
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:iconridgebackdog:
ridgebackdog Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
My God, have you been given a gift. I'm not usually much for Snape, but that's beside the point! I have the feeling that no matter what you write, it will be wonderful. I look forward to seeing much more of your work, and perhaps someday we'll be seeing your name on shelves of libraries and bookstores.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2012
Thank you so much! :hug: :heart: That really means a lot to me! I love writing these little stories, so it's wonderful to hear that there are people out there who enjoy reading them. I must admit, I have mostly been writing about Snape (I have a 146-chapter Snape/Lily fanfic on DeviantArt, because I got kind of obsessed with the two of them! :blushes: :faint:) But now I'm trying to write my own original stories. It's hard, but I'm going to keep trying, because I love writing soooo much. Thanks again for getting in touch and encouraging me! :glomp:
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:iconjustbecause62:
JustBecause62 Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
So now that I've caught up in Sympathetic Magic, I decided to read some of your short fics, and I really like this. All of it—his relationship with Eileen, his curiosity, his love of Potions—is portrayed so imaginatively, and at the same time is so true to his canon character.

Very nice. Thank you for writing all this, it's incredibly wonderful to be able to just keep reading..and reading...and never getting tired of it, because it's all so perfect. :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2012
:w00t: :hug: Thank you! I'm so happy to hear you've been enjoying the one-shot fics too. I loved writing this one, because I was totally in love with little Sev and all his smart answers! ;) (Of course, writing young Sev is very depressing, because he has to put up with so much, and he doesn't have all the cynical armour of his adult-self, but, still, at least he had some tenderness from his mum in this one)
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:iconwhitehound:
whitehound Featured By Owner May 7, 2010
Very believable and well done. I suspect that was why he wanted to be in Slytherin. I doubt that Eileen herself was a Slytherin, because Sev didn't know enough about it to know that it was very unlikely that Muggle-Born Lily would sort to Slytherin - I think Eileen was *not* a Slytherin, but she told Sev that he Head of Slytherin was also the Potions master, and that he would advance the careers of clever little boys even if they came from poor backgrounds. So he wanted to be in Slytherin and have Horace for a substitute father.

Btw, there are three points in this where you sudenly refer to him as "Snape" rather than Severus and the first one is definitely talking about him as a six-year-old, so it jars a bit - I suspect it's an error.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 8, 2010
Thank you, I'm so glad you liked it! :hug: I have such a weakness for calling him 'Snape' - but perhaps you're right, it does look odd referring to a little boy (especially in a scene where he's surrounded by two other Snapes)!

I'm not sure why I always refer to him as 'Snape' in these fanfics. I think it's because that was how I was first introduced to him. He's always 'Snape' in Harry's thoughts (even though I'm mostly exasperated and disgusted by Harry's thoughts! ;))

Also, it's easier when you're using the possessive case - I always find it cumbersome to talk about Severus's things, but Snape's things seems to roll off the tongue better, somehow! I suppose it could sound overly formal or cold to be always referring to him by his surname, but it's just a habit that I don't seem to be able to get out of.
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:iconwhitehound:
whitehound Featured By Owner May 8, 2010
"Severus's" is a mouthful, yes. I often write "Albus" instead of "Dumbledore" just because it's easier to type.

Calling him "Snape" would be fine if he was at school because they tend to call each other by their surnames, but as you say it sounds odd when all three of the people present are Snapes.

How did you manage to get italics in a comment when there's no formatting buttons (and Ctrl-I doesn't work)? Do these message boxes accept HTML code?
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 8, 2010
Yes, you have to use HTML. Just enclose whatever you want to italicize with these tags (only with the spaces deleted): < i > < /i > . You can also embolden your words by switching the i for b. You have to do the same thing if you want italicized or emboldened words in your fanfics on this site. (DeviantArt does not traditionally make things easy for writers!)
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:iconwhitehound:
whitehound Featured By Owner May 8, 2010
"You have to do the same thing if you want italicized or emboldened words in your fanfics on this site."

Sure - but it's unusual to find a review/messaging system that recognises HTML, especially one which *does* recognise line-breaks without having to insert a <p> or <br>.

[You don't need spaces - you can trick it into writing <p> without reading it as a paragraoh break if you encode the angle brackets as &lt; and &gt; - and to write that without it interpreting the code as angle brackets I had to encode the ampersand as &amp; .]
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:iconpreseli:
Preseli Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2010
This is the first ever piece deviantFIC I've read, and I'm so glad it's this. The ducks ... the ducks were so oddly moving (not just literally!)

I really enjoy comparing different versions of early Snapelife, and this one is so convincing.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2010
:hug: Thank you, I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Those ducks made me sad too! Poor sev - they got to escape and he didn't! :(
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:iconmybreathingselfagain:
I finally managed to read one of your stories and I really liked it! Such a bittersweet picture of his childhood... You portrayed Severus the child, his complex relationship with Eileen and his solitude very well, compliments! I will read more! :-)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2009
Thank you! :hug: I'm so glad you enjoyed it! :) I love writing young Severus, before he got so angry (although angry Severus is lots of fun too, of course!) If you want to read the stories in chronological order (and please don't feel obliged to, because they are rather long!) you can find a list of the order of chapters in my journal here: [link]
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:iconmybreathingselfagain:
Oh, I think I will when I have more time! Meanwhile I will start with the shorter ones :-). But let me make sure, are all the other ones part of a cycle? That must be a novel by now!! Amazing... :-O
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2009
Yes, they're all part of a cycle. I just can't stop writing them - it's starting to get out of hand! ;) But I really enjoy writing (especially about Sev - and sarcastic Sev above all!), and the people on DA have been so lovely and supportive! The fan-art here is really inspiring too, so I must thank you for your beautiful paintings and sketches of Severus, they really help me write!
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:iconmybreathingselfagain:
mybreathingselfagain Featured By Owner Apr 3, 2009
I have FINALLY managed to read another one of your stories (took me so long because I have SO much to do these days) and I am just as enthusiastic about it as about "Potions", if not more so :rose:.
You have a beautiful style and understand your characters so well! :heart:
Yes, you are right, it is a wonderful thing for writers of fanfictions and illustrators/artists of fanart to be able to inspire each other; because, yes, to read stories like yours puts so many more new images in one's head... :-).
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2009
Yay! :boogie: Thank you again, you have no idea how happy I get at the thought of inspiring other artists and writers here on DA! :hug:
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:iconmybreathingselfagain:
mybreathingselfagain Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2009
I would love to, at some time (time permitting), illustrate one or two of your stories... :heart:
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2009
That would be amazing! :) :hug: Your art captures Severus in a way that no amount of words ever could!
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(1 Reply)
:iconflameofthewest7:
FlameoftheWest7 Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
Awesome chapter, with such well-developed characters, especially considering that this vignette is our first view of Eileen. The end paragraph is so insightful and memorable, and I love the rhyme about the wands--that could be straight out of canon!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
Thank you so much! :hug: That rhyme about the wands was my first attempt at writing poetry - something I've always tried my hardest to avoid - so I'm really glad you liked it! :)
I love writing about Sev's relationship with his mother - I think they're both very similar - they both get stuck in their bitterest memories and find it difficult to forget - but I think they really do care about each other, in a kind of absent-minded way.
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
I am in love with little Sev... such a clever mite :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2009
Thank you! :) I like thinking about how Sev would be as a child, before he got all bitter and disillusioned! I picture him always asking questions and investigating things - and with a sweet tooth, for some reason!
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2009
Oh yes, a sweet tooth definitely. In my personal canon he loves very sugary things, like sticky toffee pudding (as opposed to chocolate; commonly in the fanon, but somehow I don't see it!), partly because they would have been such rare treats in his economic situation.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2009
Oooh, yes, I love sticky toffee pudding - Sev has good taste! :) Perhaps he would think chocolate is too frivolous - there's something very down-to-earth about rich, stodgy desserts like sticky toffee pudding - something that means he's not betraying his northern, working-class roots!
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:icondocmasinflunch:
DocmasInFlunch Featured By Owner May 12, 2009   Writer
I totally agree :D I always imagine him liking those sorts of 70s sweets like flying saucers and curly wurlies (the proper big ones) and space dust, but I guess that's more Dumbledore. I always wondered why Sev didn't have a northern accent. Maybe it was just his dad that was from up north (: I loved your story by the way, I haven't read a good Snape fic in ages!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 12, 2009
Thank you, I'm so glad you liked it! :hug: I think he would like flying saucers and curly wurlies (but he would probably pretend to sneer at their muggle-ness and call them frivolous! ;))
As for his accent, I always imagined that he did his best to hide it (he probably wanted to distance himself from his childhood as much as possible, and maybe his mother had a posh accent and he tried to emulate her). I like to think that, when he's angry, the northern accent comes out. Harry was probably too terrified to notice it!
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:icondocmasinflunch:
DocmasInFlunch Featured By Owner May 13, 2009   Writer
Oh, definitely xD He's mock them when other people were around, but I bet he has a secret stash of them under his bed :D

Honestly, it was a fantastic fic. Very well written, I thought it was a really clever take on why Snape is so connected to potions, and I loved that they represented his thoughts, which he values, while other magic represented his emotions, which he always tried to surpress. I liked how inquistive Sev was, and how he thought of himself as clever from a young age. That's how I imagine him as a child.

Poor Sev, I bet his students wouldn't take him seriously if he spoke "up north" all the time xD Maybe he'd have an accent like Gene Hunt from Life On Mars. Have you seen that? I think JKR said something about the place Snape grew up possibly being near Manchester. And Snape was a teenager in the seventies...oh god, now I'm getting ideas of a Harry Potter/Life On Mars crossover o__O
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 13, 2009
:giggle: That would be great! Strangely enough, I like to imagine Snape dressed in seventies clothes, and smoking profusely! He'd be good in Life on Mars. If they ever needed a witheringly sarcastic policeman, he would fit right in! :)
I'm so glad you liked the fic! I love writing about Severus. I always see him as a logical person in a completely illogical world, just getting more and more exasperated with everybody - and it's fun to imagine that he's been doing that ever since he was five!
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(1 Reply)
:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I adored this. It was nice seeing Severus and his mother together. Your chapters like this are always so soothing to me for some reason :-)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
Yay! :hug: Thank you! I know what you mean, I somehow find it soothing to write from Snape's perspective, even though the things that are going through his mind are sometimes far from soothing! I guess I just find it comforting to be with the character at this stage, because I've grown to love him so much! :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
There is something soothing about getting inside Severus' head. There is something about the slightly detached, logical and sequential way that his mind works, paired with his magic and heightened intuition that I find very calming and centering. For all his anger, bitterness, jealousy and hatred, at his core there is a calm, and when he is concentrating on something (like potion brewing :-)), I find his overall aura to be one of calm, and that rubs off on the writer, or any other character that happens to be around him.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
Yes, I agree, he is very detached and logical, especially when brewing potions. It's almost a meditation for him. How I'd love to sit and watch him making potions, though I'd probably distract him with all those wistful sighs! ;)
And there's the fact that he doesn't react with surprise or outrage to anything the Death Eaters do, as though he's seen the worst of human nature and there's nothing that can shock him anymore. He has a wonderful, calm world-weariness. It's only really James and Harry who have the key to making him irate!
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
And Sirius pushes his buttons too, I wager. Sometimes I don't think he knew who he hated more - James or Sirius. I think he positively adored Harry in comparison ;-).

And yes to the world-weariness. It is that mixed with the level-headed logic that makes him feel like a very safe person to have around in an emergency.

If I watched him brew I'd pester him with questions. I imagine this would irritate the hell out of him, but also stroke his ego a little, because it would make him feel all proficient and competent and brilliant (which he is ;-)), and then that competence and brilliance would turn me on, and having his ego stroked would turn him on, and then... sigh... I fear that not much potion brewing would get accomplished :giggle:. Well, that's how it would go in my fantasy, anyway.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
Lol! :giggle: That's a good scenario! You're right, he would eventually be softened by somebody actually recognizing his brilliance! He gets no recognition like that in the books! And how could he stay irritated with somebody who was so interested in learning about Potions?
I just remembered that song-title by Mrs Weasley's favourite singer: 'A Cauldron full of Hot Strong Love', and it seemed appropriate! ;)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
lol. I have a feeling he would hate that song as much as all the men seemed too. What were the words to that now...

Oh God, I actually went and got my copy of Half-Blood Prince to check. Here's the only snippet we are given:

Oh come and stir my cauldron,
And if you do it right
I'll boil you up some hot, strong love
To keep you warm tonight.'


That's actually saccharine enough to make me gag, lol.

Ironically a different song begins just as they begin to talk about Snape. It's called 'You Charmed the Heart Right Out of Me'. Words as follow:

'Oh, my poor heart, where has it gone?
It's left me for a spell...'


At this point Lupin begins to tell Harry why he trusts Severus, and that, even though they would probably never be bosom friends, Severus had been very kind to him while he worked at the school, what with brewing him his wolfsbane every month. He keeps on defending Severus and then says: "It might have been on Dumbledore's orders that Severus (and he always refers to him by his first name, I just realize, even though everyone else calls him 'Snape';) questioned Draco."

And then we get this snippet of the song:

'...and now you've torn it quite apart
I'll thank you to give back my heart!'


At this point the song ends and they cease talking about Snape.

I'm not sure why I mention that, but it seems significant for some reason, now I see it written down like that. It definitely has my little Snupin loving soul all a flutter, but that aside, it's almost as though Rowling meant something by it. Fascinating.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
That's really interesting! Maybe J.K. was giving us some hints about Snape's true, broken-hearted state. Or maybe Lupin really did have a crush on him. I never really know with Lupin - he lives in such an emotional strait-jacket that it's difficult to tell who he cares about. He certainly doesn't seem to have the passions that Snape does - I think that's why I've never written from his perspective, because I just have no idea what's going through his head - I wouldn't know where to start, but he's definitely my favourite out of all the Marauders (not that that's much of a contest!)
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(1 Reply)
:iconthysilverdoe:
thysilverdoe Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Professional Writer
Aw, I loved this. It was so sad yet sweet in a way. Poor Sev and Eileen. I seriously hope that Sev was the one that did him in. ;P Very nice work, as per usual.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
Thank you, I'm so glad you liked it! :hug: I actually have a theory about who did him in - I hope I get a chance to write about it someday! :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You do?!?! I always thought Toby just died of natural causes, his kidneys (not his liver as one would suspect with so much drinking), but I can't wait to hear your theory.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
I have a terrible habit of filling Sev's life with drama that he really doesn't need! ;) But Tobias is such a nasty piece of work (in this fic, at least) that somebody should really do him in!
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
lol, poor Toby. What a mess of a man he was. Of course Eileen was no ray of sunshine either. Poor Severus... :-(
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:iconthysilverdoe:
thysilverdoe Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Professional Writer
You're welcome. :hug: That would be awesome. :)
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