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Severus stayed on the rooftop, simply because he couldn’t think of anywhere else to go. The Slytherin common-room would be buzzing with dark, suspicious gossip about Avery’s attack. The library was too full of painful memories. And everywhere else carried the risk of bringing him face-to-face with Potter’s chirpy grin or Dumbledore’s grave stare.   

He liked lying on the roof these days anyway, trying to pick out stars through the thick blanket of cloud. It wasn’t that he had a lot to think about. Mostly, his mind was clear of thoughts and hazy with pain. There was nothing to mull over, except his total lack of options.   

He couldn’t sink into his Occlumency state, because he didn’t know what it would do. It would probably stop the pain; it would certainly have a plan; but Lily wouldn’t like it. It would confirm her worst suspicions about him.

He felt as though all his insides had been scooped out – as though his chest was a hollow cavity, rapidly filling up with rain-water. But, for someone with no insides, there was a bewildering amount of pain. What was left in his chest to ache, he had no idea, but, whatever it was, it was doing it with a vengeance.  

He was miserably confused. He didn’t know what he could do to make it better, because he didn’t understand what he’d done that was so bad in the first place.

So, mostly, he just lay back on the roof-top and let it bleed. With the rain sifting down like a thick mist, soaking into his hair and school-robes, pearling on his feverish skin, he just smoked cigarettes and stared up at the clouds.  He was too tired to even shiver. And he didn’t bother blinking the rainwater out of his eyes.  

The only sound he could hear was the fizzling and sputtering of his lit cigarette in the rain. His mind was so clear that it echoed.  

If Lily had been a stained-glass roof over his head before – keeping off the rain, bending the harsh light into pretty colours – then that roof had completely fallen in. He was now lying, shell-shocked, in the wreckage, blinded by the white-hot sun, and pinned to the ground by shattered shards of glass that had all – miraculously but unfortunately – failed to kill him.  

It was easier if he was lying down. It felt as though the slates at his back could absorb some of the pain – like he could earth a tiny portion of the anxiety that was crackling through him in all that indifferent stone. But then, he supposed, the stones of this castle probably weren’t all that indifferent. According to Dumbledore, the place was alive, and it had a magic of its own. Any place buzzing with that much magic, and that many teenage hopes and fears, would start to absorb them eventually.

“This particular castle, despite its great age, has the mind of a seventeen year-old,” Dumbledore had explained cheerfully. “A very neurotic seventeen year-old, who feels desperately misunderstood, and will do anything to impress people. Its antics never fail to amuse me.”  

Snape had just scowled at him. It was the safest way to answer Dumbledore. The more you got angry with him, the more delighted he became. If you scowled, you got let off with one of those twinkly-eyed smiles, and you could find somewhere quiet to be sick later.

Severus took a deep draw on his cigarette and stared up at the sky. There was something which presented itself as a solution. It only occurred to him when he was very tired, or when he’d just seen Lily walking through the castle corridors, flanked by Meg Valance and Mary MacDonald, who were holding onto her elbows as though they had to physically support her – as though she was so weak with grief that she needed to be carried. Then this naggingly persistent idea would step up, clear its throat, and confidently assert that it was possible to bleed out the pain.

It was a familiar idea, from way back in his childhood  – that there was poison in your veins – and it was the poison that was making you so miserable all the time – so, if you could just open up your skin – just cut yourself a little bit – then you could let it out.

It was a bad idea. It would draw attention to him, and that was the last thing he wanted right now. People got curious about scars and bandages – especially teachers. And it was rumoured that Voldemort could smell any injury he hadn’t personally caused, and the smell was highly offensive to him.  

Severus had been avoiding attention his entire life. He knew the tricks. You had to look reasonably healthy and well-presented. Don’t give them anything to latch on to. Nature had already cursed him with a distinctly noticeable face. He didn’t want to make it worse with scars and scratches. Besides, it was so melodramatic, so Gryffindor, to do something like that. Kit yourself out in attention-grabbing crimson stripes, and just watch how quickly the world makes it up to you.

Anyone who treated him differently just because he was bleeding was not the kind of person he wanted on his side in the first place. If he got respect, he wanted it to be real. He wanted it to be for something he could do.

The worst part was going back to class every day and pretending everything was normal. He could have dealt with it if he’d been allowed a few months off, to live in a cave. But here he had to answer questions in class, and try to make himself care about the optimal boiling point of Veritaserum, or the conjunction of Venus and Mars.

It wasn’t fair. But that accusation didn’t carry much weight anymore. Nothing was fair. You just had to get used to it.

Severus exhaled slowly. There was some kind of commotion going on in the chimney that led back down to the castle’s interior. A couple of bats flew out of the shaft, careering around like mental patients. Their mad flapping and squeaking died down as they headed for the Forbidden Forest, but the silence they’d shattered didn’t return. Instead, there was a steady, metallic sound, almost on the edge of hearing. Severus frowned for a while as he tried to recognize it, and then he sat bolt upright, his heart in his throat. He’d been lying still for so long that the sudden movement made him dizzy.

Someone was climbing the ladder.

Don’t get excited, he told himself. It won’t be her. She hates you, remember? She practically said so.

But she loves this garden, doesn’t she? And who else knows about it? Apart from the revenge-crazed lunatic who sent you that list? And who cares about them? If you could – if she was on your side again – none of that would matter.
   

It took a torturously long time for the newcomer to climb the ladder. The top of a dark-haired head came out first, followed by the suddenly loathsome face of Regulus Black.

Severus sank back down with a groan. The aching had swooped down on him again, as though it felt it needed to make up for lost time.  

“How did you find me?” he managed to say, between gritted teeth. Hatred was burning the back of his throat like acid, and there was no-one to direct it at but himself.

That was the worst part about having hope – when it was yanked out of you it dragged all your insides with it, until you were just a freely-bleeding shell.

“I’ve known about this place for years,” said Regulus, with one of those patented Black-family shrugs. He settled down on the slates next to Severus, and made no comment about his wet hair or painful grimace.

Snape was well aware that he must have looked like he'd barely escaped from a muggle fist-fight. He had been able to heal the broken hand he’d received from punching Potter. But, for some reason, the cut on his lip, which he hadn’t even noticed until he’d finished screwing things up with Lily, was proving more stubborn. Healing it would have involved looking at himself in the mirror, and then trying to find something to like about himself – an impossible combination.  

And, needless to say, he was not going to the Hospital Wing to get it fixed.    

“I bet I found it before you did,” Regulus went on. “Anyway,” he added, in a slightly defensive tone, because Snape was giving him a look that would have been worthy of a Basilisk, “I don’t see your name written on it.”

“You’ll see my name written on your forehead with a compass if you don’t leave right now,” Severus hissed.

Regulus shrugged again. “I just thought you might want a shoulder to cr - ,” But he stopped suddenly, because Snape had whipped his wand through the air and cut him off in mid-sentence with a Silencing Jinx.   

Severus watched desolately as Regulus struggled to speak. It would normally have been very amusing, but tonight it was just as tragic as everything else. He sighed and waved his wand again, removing the Jinx. He would have thought Regulus would have been able to remove it himself. It wasn’t a problem if you’d mastered non-verbal counter-curses. But Regulus either hadn’t learned them yet, or was too drunk to remember them. He smelled of whisky – a scent that made Snape’s stomach churn.

“Why is everyone always doing that to me?” Regulus shouted, frightening another load of bats from their hiding places, and sending them skittering across the sky.  

A thousand answers occurred, but Snape was too miserable to even be sarcastic. He sighed. “Regulus, it was necessary. If I’d let you say what you were about to say, I would have had to kill you.”

“What, you would have killed me for mentioning the mud - ,”

But Snape had been ready for this. He waved his wand again, and the words were instantly cut off. He stared out mournfully over the parapet and muttered: “I think I’m going to have to kill you anyway.”

This time, he let Regulus struggle for a full five minutes before removing the Jinx. But the boy kept his temper, Severus had to give him that. At least he wasn’t an aggressive drunk. If he had been an aggressive drunk, Snape would have probably hurled him off the roof. Regulus had already reminded him of Lily tonight; the last thing he needed was to be reminded of his father as well.

But perhaps it would be good to be distracted. If he could talk to someone about politics, or the weather, or the ideal nesting conditions for dragons – anything that wasn’t connected with Lily, or Potter, or Lily and Potter – maybe the aching would subside for a bit.

But Regulus, when he was able to speak again, didn’t have any desire to change the subject. He really was his own worst enemy.   

“You know, you’re a hero in the Slytherin common-room,” he went on conversationally, as though there had been no interruption. Severus gave a shuddering sigh and let him talk. There was no point fighting the current. The shore had already disappeared.  

“Everyone knows you were behind Caladrius’ disappearance, and now Pomfrey! Jennings is taking bets on which one of Dumbledore’s teachers you’ll put out of commission next. My money’s on McGonagall.”

“Great,” said Snape morosely, taking a long draw on his cigarette.

“You know,” said Regulus, scrutinizing his pale, drawn face, as if for the first time, “that cut on your lip is nasty. Doesn’t it hurt when you smile?”

“I don’t know,” said Snape.

Regulus didn’t seem to have been listening. “Hey, are any of these herbs narcotic?” he asked.

Snape frowned, trying to focus on the scene before him. “The chamomile’s a sedative,” he muttered, because the urge to show off was somehow more deeply rooted than the urge to throw Regulus off the roof.

“Really? Which one is that?”

Snape pointed it out dumbly. To his amazement, Regulus seized a handful of the leaves and started to chew.

Well, it had kept him from thinking about Lily for a few seconds, anyway. Perhaps this was a good idea after all. Not a good idea in the sense that it felt good, of course, but that was probably too much to ask at this stage.

Still, watching someone chewing a handful of leaves could only distract you for so long. Severus cast around for another topic of conversation, and then realized that Regulus might prove to be a mine of information about the names on that list.  

“Is Narcissa a Death Eater?” he asked abruptly.

Regulus choked on the leaf he’d been chewing. “How did you…? Who told you that?”

“Is it true?” Snape asked in surprise.

“Yeah. She joined up an hour ago. On probation, of course. Malfoy doesn’t know.”

“Who would know?” he asked urgently.

“Well, I thought just me and her and the Dark Lord.”

“And what about Barty Crouch?”

“How would he know?”

“No – I mean, is he a Death Eater?”

“Barty Crouch? He’s only fourteen! And his dad would kill him.”

“That’s what I thought,” said Severus.

“What is all this about, Sev?”

A sharp, nasty jolt of familiarity. Severus tried to find the thread of his thoughts, but found that he was just staring at a brick wall of pain. He knew there had been something other than pain before – and presumably, one day, there would be something other than pain again, but it was difficult to imagine at the moment.

“If you ever,” he started, trying to get his voice to stay steady but giving up half-way through, “ever call me that again, I’ll - ,”  

Regulus held up his hands to stem the tide of obscenities. “OK, I know, I know,” he said soothingly. “Sorry.”

“What do the people on this list have in common?” Severus grumbled, pulling out the letter and passing it to Regulus. The need to be distracted was burning a hole in this throat.

“They’re all Slytherins?” Regulus suggested.

“Artemisia Wormwood’s a Ravenclaw.”

“Oh, yeah…. There’s even a Gryffindor, look… Peter Pettigrew.” Regulus paused. “Why is Avery’s name crossed out?”

“I assume it’s because he was hospitalized this morning.”

“No way!” Regulus breathed. “You think this is some kind of… revenge list?”

Snape just shrugged.

“If it is a revenge list,” Regulus persisted, “all you have to do is figure out who these people have pissed off lately.”

“With these particular people, I’d be here all night.”

Regulus frowned. “You know, I’m on that list.”

Snape didn’t answer him. There was no point. You couldn’t convince Regulus Black that he was anything other than charming. It was a notion that had been hammered into him from a very early age.

“Where did you get it, anyway?” said Regulus, who could never hold a grudge for long.

“It was over there.” He nodded towards the Rosemary bush, with its clusters of pale blue flowers. “It was addressed to me.”

“Then someone’s either trying to freak you out of tip you off,” Regulus declared excitedly.

Snape hesitated. He’d never considered that the writer of the list might be trying to help him. And, if it was Lily - ,

Oh, he was being stupid. Lily was more direct than this.

Except that she loved puzzles and riddles. Maybe she was still too mad to talk to him, but she wanted to warn him about this. And, if she was that mad, she wouldn’t want him to know it was her who warned him.

And it really did look a little bit like her handwriting…

Oh God, he was starting to hallucinate! He was so desperate for some kind of contact that everything looked as though it was a message from her.

This had to stop. She was not going to change her mind. She loved her Gryffindor friends more than she loved him and that was the end of it.

“Maybe, they’re not all Death Eaters now, but they will be someday,” Regulus mused, “and the writer of this list is a seer or something – like that Trelawney woman who foretells grisly deaths for house-wives in that tea-shop in Diagon Alley.” He paused, and then got a euphoric look in his eyes. “Or Caladrius!” he exclaimed.

“Don’t be stupid,” said Snape. “He’s long gone.”

“But where, though? Nobody knows, do they? I heard he’s an Animagus and he can turn into a bird.”   

Slowly, as though drawn by magnets, both boys’ eyes turned to the low-hanging sky. There were no birds visible, but the clouds were so thick, there was no telling what could be lurking in there. A Hippogriff could have been hovering a few feet above their heads, for all they could see.  

Snape shook himself. “You’re being dumb, Regulus. Caladrius wouldn’t attack Death Eaters.” He cast his mind back to the night they’d kidnapped him, and added. “He’s useless, for one thing. Don’t think I’ve ever seen him perform magic in my life.”

But Regulus’ short attention-span had kicked in again. “Are you going to show this to Dumbledore?” he asked abruptly.

Severus looked at him as though he was crazy. “God, no!”

“You don’t think he’d want to see it?” Regulus prompted.

“I think he’d want to see me dangling from a noose,” said Snape. “That doesn’t mean I have to make it happen.”

Regulus gave another one of his cheerful shrugs. “Fair enough. Hey, what if Dumbledore’s organizing this? You know, cleansing his school of all the Dark Lord’s supporters?”

Snape raised his eyebrows. “I’m impressed,” he said. “That’s genuinely the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. I should make you some kind of a trophy.”

Regulus genially accepted this abuse. He was used to it. He suggested a few other half-baked theories, but Snape just greeted them with shrugs or more raised eyebrows. His heart clearly wasn’t in the conversation anymore. So Regulus wandered back down to the Slytherin dormitory, wishing that he hadn’t already drunk the last of his Firewhisky.    

As soon as Regulus had gone, Snape opened his journal. He’d taken to carrying this around with him everywhere. It was one of a pair, and they were both bewitched with a Proteus Charm so that, whatever was written in one journal, would show up instantly on the pages of the other.

He and Lily had been using it since the beginning of the fifth year. It was full of hastily-scribbled notes designed to make one another laugh in class, or games of noughts and crosses, or unflattering sketches of James Potter, with stink-lines emerging from his over-sized head.

But nothing new had been written in there for a while now. Severus had wanted to write lots of things, but those Slytherin instincts for self-preservation had always restrained him. He wanted to write that he loved her, but he didn’t want to look stupid – and he wanted to write that she was a cold-hearted bitch, but he didn’t want her to get even madder.

So, mostly, he just stared at the empty page, as though staring at it hard enough would cause words to appear. Ideally, they would start with: ‘Oh, Severus, I’m so sorry, I miss you so much’, and they would end: ‘meet me in the rooftop garden in five minutes and bring that contraceptive potion’.

There was a light burning in the window of the Hospital Wing, but then, there always was. It was traditional, apparently. Lily had explained it to him once. In the days when witches and wizards were fleeing muggle persecution, they often managed to get away on their broomsticks. They had to flee across miles of unpopulated countryside, often at night, in horrible weather conditions, and while seriously wounded. Magical healers would keep a light burning in their windows at all times to guide the broomsticks down.

He looked back at the page, and saw that it was wet. Little crinkled patches were appearing, as though drops of rainwater were falling onto it. But the rain had stopped ages ago. He looked up to see if it had started again. Scottish rain was insidious. You didn’t realize it was even there until you had pneumonia.

But the sky was quite clear, quite empty. As an experiment, he held his hand over the paper to keep any rain-drops off, but the wet patches still appeared.

And then Severus felt his pulse quicken with that horrible, sneaking, climbing feeling of hope.

This was her. It had to be. She was crying over her own journal. The page was absorbing her tears and, because it was bewitched with a Proteus charm, the tears were showing up in his book too.

Hands shaking, he reached for the quill in his bag.

Please talk to me, he wrote, almost tearing the soggy page in his haste. The pen slipped – the ink ran – now even his own possessions were trying to keep him from reaching her.  

He had to fight a mad desire to shake the book frantically, as though he thought she was going to fall out from between the pages, like a long-forgotten book-mark.

He stared at the page again, willing letters to appear on the blank and crinkly surface. But there was no reply. Of course there was no reply. One of her Gryffindor mates had probably yanked the pen off her.

He stared at the page for another ten minutes, without any hope, but with a kind of wretched, resigned persistence. Then he pressed his forehead against the damp page in complete and utter desolation. He wanted to let out the scream that was building inside his chest. If he howled into the page, would she hear it? Could she feel the indentations made by his features? Was she stroking his forehead, even now?

Or was she laughing?

And this thought was magical. It made him straighten up, careful not to let any of his own tears fall onto the page, and close the book.

This wasn’t helping. If he wanted to get her back, he needed to show her that he was capable.

He put the book back in his bag and stood up, without any clear idea of where he was going to go. It felt so shudderingly wrong to let her go on crying – to leave her to be comforted by one of those Gryffindors – Meg Valance, maybe, or - ,

Don’t even think it. You’ll go mad. Get a grip.

Anyway, it’s late. She must be in her dormitory, and men aren’t allowed in the Gryffindor girls’ dormitories.

Still, he wouldn’t have put it past Potter to ooze his way under the door.

No, he needed to get a hold of himself. He needed to show Lily he was sorry. A soggy page full of apologies was not going to cut it. So he turned to the place he always turned when he was in trouble. The library.

And now his head was very clear. If he could treat this like an academic problem – a question of magical theory that required careful thought and copious research – then it would be back within his comfort zone. Academic questions never stumped him. Of course, there was a part of him that thought this course of action was too slow. There was a part of him that wanted to do something wild and crazy – kidnap her, maybe – then tie her to a chair until she was prepared to listen. But, on the whole, he preferred it this way. It was more organized. It was more… Slytherin.
Continuing from Day and Night [link]
And with 100% immature content this time! :)
Does anyone know where the fan-fiction category has gone? Is that just a blip? Or am I being discouraged from writing fan-fiction? Et tu, DeviantArt?
Hmm... if JK Rowling herself told me to stop writing fan-fiction, would I stop? Probably. I guess she's the only one who has a right to ask me to stop.
But I'd probably write stories with very Snape-like characters, for a while, until I got over it.
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:iconpolkadotpeony:
polkadotpeony Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2011
I really loved this chapter, everything that you wrote in it was so enlightening to his inner physique. I feel like my brain is being overloaded with so much interesting Severus insight that I don't even know what to do with it or where to store it. I fee like I should be taking notes. lol

I actually liked the blood letting part. It reminded me of a fan art I found here of Sev lying in the snow, blood poring out of his wrist and Malfoy standing above him. I thought that there was a whole story there behind that.

I have no idea what Sev is planning on doing to get Lily back but I really hope it is good and that it works!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2011
Thank you! I'm so happy you're liking these chapters! :tighthug: I'm afraid Sev's conviction that, if he could just open a vein, he could somehow bleed out the misery comes from personal experience - whenever I've been depressed, I've felt that way. (Although, I should say, I definitely don't have as many reasons to be depressed as Sev does! Still, writing his character helps me deal with my own depression sometimes, just by kind of getting it out in the open.)
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:iconwearesevenstudios:
WeAreSevenStudios Featured By Owner May 23, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
I'm glad he hasn't lost hope, and that he still weighs his actions against the question, "would this make Lily hate me more?" Even if he does hate the feeling of having his hopes crushed... who doesn't?

And it was rumoured that Voldemort could smell any injury he hadn’t personally caused, and the smell was highly offensive to him.
That is scary. And, for some reason, it makes me think of Dr. Lector's prodigious sense of smell in Silence of the Lambs (which only adds to my unease).

Besides, it was so melodramatic, so Gryffindor, to do something like that. Kit yourself out in attention-grabbing crimson stripes, and just watch how quickly the world makes it up to you.
Poor Severus. I know how he feels in this case.

Poor Regulus (it seems this phrase is competing with "poor Severus"). Everywhere he turns someone is forcibly shutting him up. :(

I'm loving the mystery about the list. I'd write more, but I need to read the next chapter now. :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 23, 2010
I like the Voldemort/Hannibal Lector parallels! Although I find Hannibal Lector more frightening than pretty much any other character, so maybe I'd better not think about it too much!

I think you're right - Sev has fixed his sights on getting Lily back, and it's preventing him from doing anything too stupid i.e. killing Potter/ jumping off the roof. He still hopes, even though he's been disappointed in his hopes before, and it has been the worst pain he's ever felt. :( Poor dear! There's a bit somewhere about how you can't help hoping when you're in love - it absolutely prevents you from being realistic about things, which is certainly something I've felt in my life-time!
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:iconwearesevenstudios:
WeAreSevenStudios Featured By Owner May 23, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
There's a bit somewhere about how you can't help hoping when you're in love - it absolutely prevents you from being realistic about things
Yes, I think that's true too. No matter how much Severus is angry at himself for hoping, hope is keeping him alive at this point. Lucius was a perfect example of what someone with nothing left to lose will do (and certainly Snape has a good idea of what he would do if he were in that place).
What's amazing to me, and maybe this touches a bit on his ability to love, is that he continues to find some hope-like thing to hang onto. Even after Lily dies, he accepts Dumbledore's proposition about keeping her son alive. I don't know if I can call it 'hope' exactly, but he focuses on that, and it becomes --sadly-- his reason for living. But I suppose people will find reasons to hold onto hope, even if they don't want to.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 24, 2010
Yes, it's hard to call it hope, because it seems to make him so miserable! But, as you say, that reassuring misery becomes his reason for living. I guess you need something to latch on to, when you've lost the only person you've ever loved. :sniff: What a beautiful character he is! I like having this chance to gush about why he's so fabulous! :) ;)
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:iconancatdubh:
AnCatDubh Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2009
God, it feels so good to be reading you again :typerhappy:

I really like Regulus in your story for some reason. He's a good counterpart to Severus's graveness. I tend to like mad people in general anyway (Luna Lovegood if you hear me...). And with all the controlled Slytherins it's nice to have a wacky character. I guess Bella is like that too but she's more predictable, and doesn't have the same emotional troubles.

Aahh... I can't believe I'm going to catch up with the writing soon... Don't want to!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2009
Oh, no, I'd better get writing! :sprint: I hope you won't get impatient with my sporadic updates - I absolutely love these characters, but sometimes I can go a while without writing a new chapter (it's been nearly a month since my last one, I've been having such terrible writer's-block!) Anyway, I'm so happy you're still reading :hug:
P.S. I love Regulus too! :heart: He's such a cheerful thing!
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
Apparently I've already commented on this, but I have a couple more remarks on what I guess is a second reading:

Doesn’t it hurt when you smile?”

“I don’t know,” said Snape.


*rolls eyes at Regulus* I can't decide whether he's being incisively clever or really dim with that remark...

“Artemisia Wormwood’s a Ravenclaw.”

Artemisia Wormwood's got a redundant name, lol. I bet she spent her childhood being teased by "Green Fairy".
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
:giggle: I think Regulus is just being dim, or drunk, or both! And, yes, Artemisia Wormwood has a totally redundant name - and in a school like Hogwarts, I bet she did get teased - especially during Potions classes!
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:iconnynaeve-3:
Nynaeve-3 Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2009
Great new update!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2009
Thanks very much! :hug:
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:iconflameofthewest7:
FlameoftheWest7 Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2009
You have no idea the panicky look that appears in people's eyes when I tell them I write fanfiction!
Man, can I relate...lol! The sad thing is, there are several people I would really like to have read my stuff so I could get their opinions, but I daren't show them. Good thing I have you guys!

Anyway, nice work! I loved the paragraph that likened Lily to a stained-glass roof, and the parts with Dumbledore (you right him so well!) This line was awesome too:

“...that cut on your lip is nasty. Doesn’t it hurt when you smile?” /"I don't know," said Snape.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2009
:giggle: I must confess, I wrote in Sev's cut lip just so I could do that joke!
It's a shame there's such a stigma attached to fanfiction. Sometimes, I'll get round it by telling people I post 'creative writing' on the internet. They'll be interested for a while, but when I mention that it's fanfiction, you can just see them switch off. They've mentally filed it away as "not interesting" or possibly even "dangerous to know". ;)
I'd quite like to write a paper defending fanfiction, because people don't realize how much it's a part of our literary history. All those medieval romances about the knights of the round table were fan-fiction. Shakespeare's plots and characters were borrowed from mythology and well-known stories of his time. It's not fair that we should be classified as weirdos for doing it!
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2009
So I think the term "gluttonous consumption" can mostly aptly describe my reaction to whenever I see you post a new chapter. The only problem with gluttony of course, is that one is never satisfied you see ;)

Be that as it may, I found this chapter particularly satisfying as I got to read it right before I had to go to work, and thus it gave me a nice pick-me-up.

So it looks like Sev has decided to start trying to put it right. What I particlarly like about how this is playing out so far, is that you don't have him realize everything all at once. In other fics, it's common that the writer would have him rush off to try and find a way to undo the damage immediately after Lily got mad. Here you take the reader through Sev's thought process, and thus while a chapter like this might be less action oriented, it is very informative, making it easier to suspend disbelief.

I am a bit puzzled by some of his behavior though. One the one hand, he does feel guilty for for putting Pomfrey in a coma, but at the same time he doesn't know what he did wrong... or why Lily got so mad. It's like he's feeling guilty about the practical result, but no the intent behind it. If it came down to choosing between Lily's life and someone else, he would've made the exact same choice. And it is precisely that aspect that Lily would be troubled by since she's naturally very selfless and giving. I'd love to see how this difference in values gets addressed later on :)

On that note, I like that Severus continues to have a backbone with her. He's malleable here, in the sense that he doesn't stubornly cling to Dark Magic like he did in canon, but at the same time he's not a wimp that drops everything on a whim to get Lily. One thing I find particularly hard to put aside in many stories, is that Sev comes off as to needy.

In a previous chapter you and Northangel where discussing how unlike Potter, Sev needs Lily in his life. It's a romantic notion, but too much of it leads to a portrayal of Sev as spineless which from what I gather, girls find rather unattractive :p. I always thought that it was the fact that Potter didn't especially "need" Lily to enjoy his life, that would've attracted her to him in the original story. He was confident in himself the way he was, and that sort of thing could be infectious. (The Han Solo effect is another example of this I think).

Soooo, it's nice to see you striking a balance here. Sev loves her desperately, but he doesn't try to be someone else to get her. The compromises he's made seem to be pointing him to a better version of himself, but it's still him. Which means, in my opinion, that there will be a line that he can't compromise.. and I think Lily's life is it. She might have to accept the fact that if it came down to it, with no other option, Sev would choose her over the 'greater good', so to speak. (A fact I'll bet DD could appreciate :P).

Look forward to your next chapter, and especially anticipating the return of Bruiser :dance:

Cheers,

Sam
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2009
Thank you! :hug: I'm so glad you liked it. I'm writing the Bruiser chapter today, but not sure when it'll be finished. I'm easily distracted these days!

I think you're right, Sev regrets the outcome of the spell cast on Madam Pomfrey, but he can't regret that he did it, because Lily would be in that coma otherwise. As you say, that would be the hurdle Lily just couldn't get past, so maybe it's a good thing she's not talking to him at the moment!

And, yes, the fact that Potter doesn't need her probably was a big attraction in canon. I guess, in a way, it's not healthy to choose a man who depends on you like that. But this Lily - well, somehow it has worked out that this Lily, because she's a Healer, kind of likes looking after people. I think she likes to be needed. I don't think she knows that Severus needs her, though - after all, to her eyes, she's never been able to produce any positive change in his behaviour, and he hangs around with people who think muggle-borns are scum so maybe, in the back of her mind, she's a little bit worried that he's ashamed of her, or that she'll hold him back in his career and he'll end up resenting her. Severus doesn't act like he needs her, however he thinks!

And I think Sev would be more apologetic, but he desperately wants her to respect him, and, in his mind, if you admit that you're wrong once, people will assume you're wrong all the time. Besides, he's not entirely sure he was wrong in this instance!

(Am beginning to realize that this argument isn't going to be easily resolvable! But, if Sev could get Madam Pomfrey out of the coma, I'm sure Lily would overlook his attitude!)
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2009
Yeah, it leaves me wondering... what would Sev have done if he knew that it would've been a coma? I think he would have still pulled it out of Lily, but then who would he have given it to?...or would he have just let his wand shatter and buy another one? (are wands easily replaceable?)

I think for Lily she's going to have to eventually come to grips with the attitude if they stay together. I can just imagine the talk they would have about it though. I think that Sev can learn to live with the fact that Lily gives herself to the world the way she does.... but she'll have to eventually face the fact that when it comes to her life/health, there is no compromise there.

I'm reminded of the new prince of persia game ending.. where by the end, the protagonist realizes that his love was meant to die in order to keep the villain imprisoned. So upon that discovery he goes ahead and lets him out! . Now the world is going to suffer for it, but that was a price that was simply unacceptable. And like Lily, she was most "displeased" with the decision but she'll have to live learn to "live" with it :D. I particularly liked it because it threw the classic "self-sacrifice" heroism story, and threw it right out the window :P.

It's the same for Sev I think. He won't particularly relish making such a choice, but if there is no alternative then so be it. So now I'm left wondering just how Lily can come to grips with this sort of truth?

Interesting that she doesn't know just how much Sev needs her. I was taking for granted my knowledge as a reader, so I forgot that Lily isn't aware of how deep his feelings actually run. It really is such a delicate balancing act, but it seems believable thus far :). Perhaps this is an issue that Bogart-Lily is warning him about? After all, her Severus depended on her completely and that didn't turn out well at all... :P

Heh, good things are worth waiting for so no rush with the Bruiser chapter :D.

*Starts taking bets on Bruiser vs. The Giant Squid* ;)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2009
:giggle: I think the Giant Squid might just have the edge in that fight! But, you know, you're not far off... But that won't happen for a few chapters! I really wish I could concentrate on the next bit of the story instead of rushing off into the future!
I didn't know that Prince of Persia ending, that's really good! I like it when the good guys don't do what would conventionally be called the right thing. Yes, I think Severus would react the same way, and Lily would be just as "displeased" (displeased being a major understatement!). But he wouldn't see it as selfishness. As far as he's concerned, she is objectively better than anyone else in the world, so saving her life would be the logical choice. He has a strange, practical, Slytherin logic!
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2009
lol,

I feel bad now. Here I am distracting you by anticipating future story events ;).

And yes, I definately look forward to seeing how that Slytherin logic unfolds :)

Lily: Grr... cold Slytherin
Sev: Suicidal Gryffindor :D

Cheers,

Sam
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
He stared out mournfully over the parapet and muttered: “I think I’m going to have to kill you anyway.”

Oh, of course, Severus, melodrama is only for Gryffindors. *nods sagely*
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2009
True, Sev has his Gryffindor side, although I don't think he'd be very happy to hear it! But all teenagers are melodramatic, aren't they? I definitely was. ;)
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Me again.

About the despise for fanfiction/fanart - I don't care for my part. It's considered as some teen age activity (teens are silly and brainless, of course) and as a limitation of creativity. Well. For me, the fact you see and think of limits is what creates these limits and the ones who are limited are those who see these limits etc - because by definition, you can be creative everywhere, at any age, any medium, any subject etc... etc...

About the self-harming, if you want to give a try to a fanfiction I read 2,5 years ago - an old one, then - try the reading of this one : [link] - ( [link] )

What I prefer in the Snape fanfom are the therapeutic fics - and this is one of the first fics I read and appreciate. :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
I agree. I think fanfiction and fanart can involve great creativity. It's the challenge of being creative and yet faithful to the original that makes it so much fun! Lots of art is creative around certain restrictions - but nobody would say the sonnet wasn't a creative medium just because you had to limit yourself to only fourteen lines!
Thanks for the fanfic recommendation, I'll have a look at it - I like therapeutic stories too, especially if they can be therapeutic and Severus-Snape-themed at the same time! :giggle: :)
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
(sorry, the message has been sent before I could finish it.)

So - I think you're not very interested in snarries and I wouldn't force you to read such a thing, of course. Anyway, the fic is interesting not for the relationship, but for the way the author uses the characters in a therapeutic purpose. To be honest, apart from for some fics I read because there are true good stories with an excellent use of the characters (for example, like in the french fic I suggested you last time), what I look for first are the fics speaking about some mental journey - soul healing or moral change etc. That's partly the reason why I love so much Severus, who has already the biggest potential in canon for that.

It explains also that I read dark and H/c fics by preference. There are different ways of using Severus Snape in a healing process - for example, he reaches happiness because someone (Lily, Hermione, Remus, etc) helps him and changes him , or because he goes through some horrible experience (torture etc) and fights back and starts understanding about his own value and goals etc. There are different ways of healing processes in the fandom, and I'd say this fic 'Green Eyes Sublime' is a typical examplary.

So, forget the snarry thing :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2009
I think there could be some very therapeutic snarry fics - ones where they get to beat each other up, for example! ;)
Thank you so much for this recommendation, I'm sure I will love it. I agree with everything you say, the idea of Severus undergoing a healing journey is so prevalent in fan-fiction - perhaps because it's a journey he doesn't get to complete in canon. Because I'm a hopeless romantic, I tend to prefer the ones where he is healed through love, but I also think any story where he finds some self-esteem would be very therapeutic to read!
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
BTW, the fic seems to be only about Harry - that's not the case - Severus is the main subject. Anyway, it has the 'canon' elements of snarries -with the same dynamics you can find in snarries, but it's not what makes the fic. I mean, I wouldn't suggest the reading just for the slash, but really for the idea of therapeutic fic in it.
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
I don't remember the story exactly, and maybe my opinions about fics are different now, after 2 years and more of readings in the fandom. But I remember that the idea of therapy was very present in this one and that Severus is the main character there and that then I loved the fic...Well... just try it for a few pages and then you'll see if you can read it further or not ;)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2009
I really like the idea of therapeutic fan-fics. One of the themes I often come back to in this story is whether any degree of therapy, understanding or patience could ever alter Severus for the better. It's something that worries me in my own life - because I'm just as neurotic, jealous and depressive as he is! - and I often worry that suspicion will always be my instinct, my default-setting, and I'll find it impossible to trust anyone in the long term. That's where the Boggart Lily comes from too - the idea that some things are so messed-up that even love can't alter them! So I'd very much enjoy reading a fanfic about Severus undergoing therapy.
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
oh, and about DA... Well, will the fanart section disappear as well??? :confused:... hum, hum. :(
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Oh YEEEES !!! Slytherins ! ... :thumbsup:

It's always amazed me how right Severus is in his own way, but nevertheless wrong - for example with occlumency. As Severus Snape, occlumency is his strong and right, so fitting, absolute and necessary weapon, but anyway, as a human being what saves him is love, not the suppression or hidding of love. His slytherin way of existing is the same - it's perfect for him, but anyway as a person, what does matter is beyond that. Well, I'm not clear. Anyway, I adore the fact that Severus is going to do something and fight, again and again. In his slytherin way of course. :heart:
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
:dance: I really love writing about the Slytherins, and their strange morality! :heart: And, yes, I see what you mean about Severus being right and wrong at the same time. I'm sure Lily once tells him in this fic: "Everything you think is logical, for a given value of logical!" He's got flawless reasoning, and nevertheless often arrives at the wrong conclusion! It's very sweet! :)
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Absolutely :heart:
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:iconvictory-gin:
Victory-Gin Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Photographer
YES! I think every Wal-mart should come stocked with a Sev look alike for all of us fangirls (and boys) to admire and stalk.

Good chapter by the way. I love how you're forcing all of us to wait for our beloved Lily/Sev goodness, even if it does make me want to throw my hands to the heavens and cry for divine intervention. Ahh... oh well. I'll wait. It's better this way.

That list really concerns me. You have me completely wrapped up in the mystery.

As for the whole "is fanfiction actually literature or not" debate, well, no one's going to win that battle. I've seen some BOOKS published that I thought were utter tripe and read some fanfiction that I absolutely adored. (Hats off to you and *northangel27) ^.^
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:giggle: ;-)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Thank you! :hug: I'll have some Sev/Lily interaction for you soon, I promise (though it might mostly consist of arguing! ;))
You're right, it seems so arbitrary to me what is considered literature and what isn't. For me, if the plot is entertaining and the characters seem real, then that's literature. And there's plenty of fan-fiction out there that has kept me on the edge of my seat and has reduced me to tears, which half the stuff on my literature syllabus at school couldn't do!
I really hope you find a Snape look-a-like in your neighbourhood! :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I found where they stashed the fanfiction category. It is now under fanart>fanfiction , which kind of pisses me off actually, because it insinuates that fanfiction isn't real literature, to my mind.
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Never mind that, it's bizarre because writing isn't a kind of visual art (generally speaking). :confused:
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
indeed. DeviantArt is rather a mystery at times.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Yes, that does seem a bit wrong! DeviantArt doesn't seem very sympathetic to writers - their word-limit on deviation titles has almost reduced me to tears in the past! Mind you, lots of people think fanfiction isn't literature. You have no idea the panicky look that appears in people's eyes when I tell them I write fanfiction! They think I must be a weird stalker (when, in fact, I'd only become a weird stalker if they happened to look like Severus Snape! ;))
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:giggle: I would definitely stalk Snape look-a-likes. There is this one guy that I sometimes see early Sunday mornings in our Walmart here, that looks nothing like Severus,except for his eyes, but who looked at me once, while I was waiting in the checkout line, with a look of such heated passion and longing, that it reminded me of Severus, and now everytime I see him I get all hot and bothered, lol.

I understand how people would think that fanfiction isn't literature (especially when you read some of the crap fanfic out there), but there are people who are writing quality fanfic, which I would consider literature (you included), and I think that they deserve to have their work categorized as such ;-).

:iconcheerplz: for fanfic authors!!!
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
mmmh... :) please read a next comment of mine here below ;)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
;-). I'll have to read that story one of these days. I've book marked it.
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Cool :) Because I don't remember the fic very good. Then I've just had a look at it again and now I think that for the first chapters with the hundreds of points deduced from Gryffindor, it 's already worth the reading :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:giggle: Any fic that has hundreds of points deducted from Gryffindor is worth reading!! :iconcheerplz:
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:iconvizen:
Vizen Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Haha, I agree of course :D
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(1 Reply)
:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
Thank you so much! :hug: I think of your fanfiction as literature too. I prefer it to most of the stuff that was on my literature syllabus at university!

Wow, I really want to see your Walmart guy! Someone who looks like Snape is easy enough, but someone who manages to capture Snape's spirit is much harder! There's a Snape look-a-like who eats in the canteen where I work, who looks perfect, except that he seems to be going out with a big-chested blonde girl. And Severus just wouldn't do that. :no:
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Lol, yes, I cannot imagine Severus dating a Barbie doll, that's too much of a stretch.

The weird thing about the guy in the Walmart, is he is tall, like really tall (and I've never imagined Severus all that tall, like 5'11" maybe), and he even has a beard, lol. He's young though, like in his late twenties, maybe. His eyes aren't even the right color. I think they are hazel. But, the soul behind the eyes, that's what gets me. And the day he first saw me, he just kept staring, like standing there, looking right at me, and I kept looking away, but when I looked back, he was still looking and it made me blush to the roots of my hair. You would think that would creep a person out, but there was something so hungry and yet so reverent about the look he was giving me that, well... :faint:

If I didn't know better I would have thought that Severus Snape was possessing the guy, right there in the Walmart, that's how much Severus soul was pouring out of those eyes!

I'll stop now, before you think me totally mad! :ambulance: ;-)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
That really reminds me of that bit in the Prince's Tale where Snape's talking to Lily (slagging off the Marauders, I think) and it says 'the intensity of his gaze made her blush'.
There's something almost violent about the way Snape looks at her sometimes, and it definitely seems as though the Walmart guy was channelling him. Does he still stare? Or was it just that one time?
I'm very envious. My barbie-doll-dating Severus never looks at me! ;)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
His eyes follow me on the rare occasion I see him, but never like that. I'm sort of glad actually. It made me think all sorts of things I shouldn't have been thinking ;-), plus he was there with another girl, who I can only assume was his girlfriend (but then who knows, maybe she was just his sister ;-)). Good job she didn't catch him looking at me like that, or he probably would have gotten slapped :giggle:.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2009
I like the idea that random people could chanel Severus Snape. I hope I encounter a Snape stare out of the blue like that! :heart:
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