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It would have been easy to despair. And, in fact, he did despair, but not the easy way. He forced himself to go through the motions of everyday life at Hogwarts – which basically consisted of passing a weary hand across his forehead from time to time, and rolling his eyes in exasperation. He made his body go to classes, write essays, sneer at Gryffindors. He endured Bella’s playful but heavy-handed punches. He corrected the spelling on Regulus’ essays and told him, every half hour, that he was drinking too much.

He was playing the part of Severus Snape perfectly; a spring that was wound up so tight it was practically vibrating, but which never uncoiled itself – never lashed out and took the nearest spectator’s eye out. He was a miracle of emotional physics. But his heart wasn’t really in it anymore.   

And, when it got quiet – when he was forced to put away his books and try to sleep – he remembered. All the ghosts of the past lined up to stick a knife in him, and he would lie there – a pin-cushion of bitterness – bleeding freely and struggling to breathe, wondering how someone could feel this much pain and not die.

If he noticed the outside world at all in this state, all he cared about was taking someone else down with him – all he wanted to do was wipe the smile off every other face in the world.

It wasn’t always like this. There were good days and bad days – or bad days and worse days, as he preferred to think of them. He had a tendency to linger over painful memories anyway, as though they were gourmet dishes that deserved to be savoured, but the stress of having to find the Boggart-Lily and deliver her to Voldemort – when he didn’t know where she was, or even whether he wanted to let go of her at all – was driving him into those painful memories.

His brain would keep reminding him of the times when Potter had humiliated him; he kept seeing images of classrooms full of laughing faces and one smug, gerbil-faced grin. Logical thought was prevented by marauding memories. He couldn’t concentrate on his books. He didn’t want to be alone, but he snapped and sneered at anyone who was brave enough to approach him.

And then there was the real Lily. She only cared he existed because she wanted him to help Madam Pomfrey. Still, that was better than nothing.  In fact, it was bewitchingly exciting.  

That was the only good thing about living in the castle these days. Occasionally, from across the classroom, Lily would throw him a smouldering look – half-proud and half-infuriated – or pass him a note about Madam Pomfrey’s progress. They were allies again; just frosty ones.

He liked her like this – with a straight mouth and raised eyebrows. Not cold exactly – because Lily could never manage a convincing impression of a cold-hearted woman – but sizzlingly expectant.   

He was stuck in the same dilemma as before. He wanted to see her, but he didn’t have any information for her. He spent most of his life in the library these days. And, when he wasn’t reading about curse-healing, he read about Boggarts.

They weren’t listed in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, so he browsed through volumes with titles like: Magi-zoology and Me, Bestial Blunders, Finding Your Inner Griffin, and Creatures that you Never Thought Existed Until you Found Them Living at the Bottom of Your Garden.

Most of the books were completely unhelpful. All they did was list the things that Magi-zoologists didn’t know about Boggarts – which was a surprisingly large amount. The longest description he could find was in Magi-zoology and Me, and it wasn’t encouraging.  

Studies on the behaviour and habitat of the Boggart are understandably rare. No-one knows what a Boggart looks like when it is on its own. Consequently, no-one knows how or where they breed. They are solitary creatures – we know that much. Packs or swarms of Boggarts are unheard of. We simply know that they take the shape of our fears. Precisely what happens when they are not doing this is a mystery.

And it is not simply human fears to which they respond. Boggarts can take the shape of animal fears – though these are always much less clearly defined. Occasionally – if they represent a particularly well-developed or intense fear – they may speak, but this is very rare. Talking Boggarts can be a mine of information, because, when questioned, they are able to report memories of being another person’s Boggart, implying that there is some continuity of consciousness between the Boggart’s physical changes.

They can assume the powers and capabilities of whatever life-form they are imitating. For instance, Boggart-Dementors can force their victims to relive unhappy memories, Boggart-Banshees can foretell deaths, Boggart-Fwoopers can drive their victims steadily insane by their beautiful song.

It is well-known that, ten years after the death of the infamous Dark Wizard Herpo the Foul, a Boggart took on his shape and cursed ten muggles in central Athens. The Riddikulus Charm proved absolutely ineffective against this apparition. Happily, the fickle nature of the Boggart put an end to the danger. As soon as his would-be victim ran away, the Boggart-Herpo was forced to embody the rather more mundane fears of the victim’s dog. Herpo turned into a full bath-tub, and was promptly dealt with.

Therein lies the creature’s weakness. Boggarts can wield all the terrors that the human brain can conceive but, since no two human brains will ever be able to agree on which monster is the most terrifying, the Boggart’s power is limited. If humans were less individual in their fears, it is certain the Boggart would have risen to become the most dominant species on the planet by this time.  

Legend has it, there was once a Boggart who found a way around this problem. In the thirteenth century, a muggle-born witch by the name of Elizabeth Hartwell was so terrified of the long-dead Hogwarts founder Salazar Slytherin that, when she came into contact with a Boggart, it transformed into a full, speaking apparition of the great wizard. As previously discussed, Boggarts can assume the powers of the being they are impersonating – which, in Salazar Slytherin’s case, meant unbridled and pragmatic intelligence. This gave the Boggart an advantage that perhaps no other Boggart has had before, or since.

Knowing that he would assume a different shape as soon as a different mind came near him, the Boggart-Slytherin carried the terrified muggle-born in his arms everywhere he went. According to legend, the Boggart lived for ten years in this shape, never allowing his victim out of his sight. The charade only came to an end when Elizabeth Hartwell died and there was no mind left to fear him.

By all accounts, the Boggart thought he was Salazar Slytherin. He wrote books on magical theory which scholars have since admitted into the canon of Slytherin’s great works. He had every ounce of the great wizard’s knowledge, and even possessed his memories. Some say he loved Elizabeth Hartwell, but could never be kind to her, because he knew that he would vanish from existence if she ceased to fear him.

These romantic theories are unsubstantiated by fact. However, Salazar Slytherin with a swooning muggle-born in his arms (the muggle-born being in various states of undress) became a favourite subject for magical painters during the Renaissance. With its paradoxical blend of terror and tenderness, the image has fascinated generations of witches and wizards, though some of Slytherin’s more conservative admirers would like to see it stricken from the record as an unrepresentative example of his attitude towards muggle-borns.

Nevertheless, let Elizabeth Hartwell’s story be a lesson to all magi-zoologists attempting to deal with Boggarts: by all means, fear terrifying monsters with drooling fangs, but never fear anything which is more intelligent than you. Intelligent fears take a great deal of escaping.



Severus put the book down and sighed.  That didn’t sound promising. If the Boggart-Lily was sticking close to the person who feared her, she could be anywhere. But who feared her, apart from Lily? It would have to be someone who believed all those rumours about the soulless red-head. A student? But then she would be somewhere in the castle, and he’d looked everywhere.

Well, not everywhere. Hogwarts was never the same place twice. There were rooms that disappeared and reappeared at certain times of the day. There was even a legendary south-west wing of the castle that had disappeared sometime in the seventeenth century and never seen fit to return.

There were places that only existed when the seeker was in a certain frame of mind – when he really needed to hide something, or really needed the bathroom. The castle had been shaped by young, desperate minds, according to Dumbledore, and now had a young, desperate mind of its own.

Severus froze. Could that be the answer? Could she be the castle’s Boggart? Dumbledore had described Hogwarts as a neurotic teenager. And, since all the people in the castle feared a seductive Lily Evans, would it be so hard to imagine that the stones themselves had absorbed that fear?  

And then, she would be able to wander anywhere she wanted to. But, no. Avery and Greyback had been attacked in Hogsmeade. If she was the castle’s Boggart, she’d never have been able to keep her shape outside it.

All he had was the knowledge of where she would strike next: it would be in the general vicinity of Narcissa Black.

Severus didn’t like being in the general vicinity of Narcissa Black, especially since she’d got engaged. The constant chatter about wedding-plans, fabrics and canapés gave him a headache. Also, it was difficult to endure the conversation of anyone who was in a happy relationship at the moment. Narcissa knew he hated to hear anecdotes about her love life, so she got stomach-churningly explicit whenever he was nearby.   

He swept the books into his bag and wandered morosely towards the Slytherin dormitories.

But, even when he was morose and mopey, there was a part of Severus Snape that was always tensed for the attack. He could wander forlornly, with sagging shoulders and dragging feet, but he couldn’t help casting suspicious glances into the shadows, or curling his fingers absent-mindedly around his wand. Pain had come upon him unexpectedly too many times for him to ever relax.  

And when the shadows exploded with the shrill voice of Bellatrix Black, he drew his wand without thinking. It was quite a struggle not to curse her. And it wasn’t even a defensive curse that sprung instinctively to his lips. He’d half-pronounced the word ‘Sectumsempra’ before he got a hold of himself.

It was hard, even when you knew she was on your side, to relax around Bella. Everything about her just screamed the word ‘threat’.   

She was pacing around the corridor outside the Slytherin portrait-hole, with her hands placed on her hips, and her elbows sticking out. It was unconscious, pure-blood body-language. She did it in order to fill as much of the corridor as possible. Anyone who wanted to get by could choose either to be mauled by her elbows, or find an alternative route to their destination. Pure-bloods didn’t get out of your way. You got out of theirs.

She hadn’t spotted Severus. She had a tendency to overlook people, and he had a tendency to stay concealed, so it was probably unavoidable. He put away his wand carefully and watched her as she paced. She was crackling with so much manic energy that he wouldn’t have been surprised to smell smoke rising from her, or see her shoes burning two holes in the carpet.

They were all mad, he thought, with a sinking feeling in his stomach. They were all mad, and he belonged with them. It was like living in a castle with all the characters from Alice in Wonderland, except, instead of ‘Off with her head’, they shouted things like ‘Crucio’. It was tidier than decapitating people, but definitely not as quick.

Bella didn’t care about killing people, the way some of the Death Eaters did. They liked to count up the number of enemies they’d dispatched. Macnair made notches in his wand to commemorate the number of wizards who’d fallen at its stroke. Bella didn’t hold with all that superstition. She saw murder as a waste. You couldn’t torture a corpse.

“You’re overreacting,” she was shouting. Bella was genetically incapable of lowering her voice. “Anyway, it’s impossible. Mother must have made a mistake.”

Suddenly, from the direction of Bella’s knees, came the sound of a clumsily-stifled sob. Severus looked down. Narcissa was sitting on the steps that led up to the Slytherin portrait hole. It must have been her, because of the silvery hair and gold-embroidered shoes, but it was making a sound that was so un-Narcissa-like that he began to suspect it was somebody else, dressed up in her clothes.

Except that was impossible. Nobody else in the world was Narcissa-shaped. She was exquisitely dainty, and nobody had her pixie-like build. She looked on a different scale to Bellatrix, even without the latter swaggering around with her elbows extended.

Narcissa’s shoulders were shaking, and her fingers were clamped down over her mouth so hard that her nails had gone white.

It was horrifying. Her face was red. Grief had surged up, through all the layers of make-up and self-restraint, like a volcanic eruption. Her mascara was smudged. Her eye-shadow had left a shimmering green trail down her cheeks.

Severus had seen her angry before, of course. She usually drew herself up to her full, haughty height and curled her lip contemptuously. When there were tantrums, they were pure-blood tantrums, and consisted mainly of outraged disbelief that anyone had dared disagree with her. But he had never seen her like this – looking so vulnerable – with a running nose and blotchy face. He had assumed she didn’t have tear-ducts or capillaries, or any of the things that made it possible for Lily to blush and smile and cry. He’d assumed there was nothing but stone underneath that powdered, perfumed, porcelain skin.  

Severus searched his mind for a sarcastic comment, but couldn’t think of anything. He felt as though he’d wandered off the track of normality. Somewhere, reality had got de-railed, and he and Narcissa were lying in the wreckage, horribly wounded, gruesomely exposed, and seeing each other as though for the first time.

When she tried to speak, she gurgled and growled, like a drowning tiger.

“My family,” she groaned.

“They were only dresses, ‘Cissy.”

“Oh God.” Narcissa couldn’t breathe. She had to learn forward, until her nose was almost touching her gold-embroidered shoes. “A thousand years,” she whispered.

“Don’t get hysterical,” said Bella. “Obviously, anyone who sabotages family property is going to get what’s coming to them. But it’s not like we lost a soldier, ‘Cissy. This doesn’t weaken us. The Dark Lord is still going to win.”

Narcissa collapsed into more paroxysms of grief.

Snape’s eyes met Bella’s. He was thankful that the situation was too solemn for her to give him one of those affectionate punches on the arm.

“What happened?” he asked.

“Someone burned down the family Wardrobe,” said Bella. “Merlin knows how. The whole place was impregnated with fire-proofing charms.”

“That’s why she’s crying?”

“A thousand years of history,” Narcissa shouted, “gone up in smoke! How would you feel, you repugnant little half-blood?”

Snape raised his eyebrows. She must be really upset if she was falling back on old insults for him. The thrill of devising new ones was usually all she lived for. Well, that and the wedding-planning.  

“You know your problem, ‘Cissy?” Bella demanded. “You think too much of the past. Now the Dark Lord has come along, our family has a future. We don’t need antiques or family-trees.”

Instinctively, Severus glanced over his shoulder to check that the corridor was deserted. Bella was such an idiot. If that careless attitude didn’t land her in Azkaban, there was really no justice.

There wasn’t, of course. He knew that from bitter experience. But he had a kind of morbid fascination about what would happen to Bella. She tortured and insulted so many people – she lived like a barbarian warlord, hacking randomly to left and right – and if justice didn’t catch up with her, then somebody’s wrath surely would. Her punishment was long overdue. It had been gathering momentum like a monsoon, being fed by a thousand insults, tortures, cruelties, and mutilations. When it finally broke over her head it was going to be spectacular.

He turned back to Narcissa, who was getting unsteadily to her feet and gazing at him with sudden, red-eyed hope. “Regulus told me,” she gasped, “that you’ve got a list.”

There was silence in the corridor.

Narcissa clutched the front of his robes and turned that imploring, smudged face up at him. “We’ve got to catch him, Severus,” she whispered. “We’ve got to stand guard around the next person on that list, and catch him at it. We can’t let him get away with this.”

Snape hesitated. He’d been considering that strategy anyway, and it would certainly be easier to have another pair of eyes.

Unfortunately, Bella – who was always two steps behind in any conversation, but used shouting to make up for what she lacked in understanding – was catching up with them.  

“You’ve got a list?” Bella repeated, in a voice so shrill that dust fell from the dungeon ceiling. “A list of all the people who are going to get attacked? Does the Dark Lord know?”   

Snape managed to give her a withering look. “Of course he knows.”

Narcissa sniffed wetly. “Then he… he wants you to catch… whoever’s doing this?”

“I’m not at liberty to discuss it,” said Snape grumpily.

“But we could help you,” she insisted. “The Dark Lord doesn’t have to know.”

Yes, he does,” Bella countered, dislodging more dust from the ceiling. Severus was sure her voice would carry to the Slytherin common-room. “He knows everything, ‘Cissy. You can’t keep secrets from him. He’d know as soon as he looked at you.”

“He hasn’t forbidden me from receiving any help,” Snape said, ignoring the voice of his inner monologue, which was screaming at him to shut up. He didn’t want help from these deranged idiots, did he?

Well, he wanted help from someone – he couldn’t deny that. But these people weren’t on his side.

Oh God, he didn’t even have a side, did he? He couldn’t talk openly to Dumbledore’s followers or Voldemort’s. He was never going to belong anywhere. It was like being the only wizard in a muggle playground all over again. And, this time, there wasn’t going to be a cute little muggle-born flying off her swing to make him feel less alone.   

“Fine,” he said abruptly. “You can tag along, if you want to help. The next name on the list is Jen Morgan. We’ll have to guard her in shifts. We can’t leave her alone for a minute. When she goes to the bathroom, you two will have to stand guard outside the door.”

Bella snorted, but Narcissa elbowed her sharply in the ribs before she could speak.

“That’s fine, Severus,” she assured him. “Thank you. We’ll catch whoever’s doing this.”

“Don’t screw it up,” said Snape.

“We won’t. I’ll get Regulus to help us. You know he’s awake at all hours anyway.”

“How did you get a list of all the victims?” Bella sneered, as though she thought that being in a homicidal maniac’s confidence was an honour he didn’t deserve.

“The attacker wants to talk to me.”

“Merlin knows why,” she grumbled.  

“Please stop saying ‘Merlin knows’,” said Snape, in a voice of strained politeness. “It’s really, really annoying. Anyway, he doesn’t know, because he’s dead.”

Bella gave him one of her teetering-on-the-edge-of-blind-fury looks, but another sharp elbow from Narcissa restrained her.

“I take it you’re on that list, Snape?” she growled.

“Of course I am.”   

Bella narrowed her eyes. “Because you were the one who found Greyback, weren’t you?” she persisted. “This attacker does seem to like you.”

“Obviously not enough,” said Snape, with a humourless smile. “Get Jen Morgan, will you? Nobody wants this to go on any longer than it has to.”

When they were gone, Severus pulled the list out of his bag. Narcissa’s name had been crossed out. She seemed to have got off lightly, although she probably wouldn’t have said so. No violence had been used against her. She hadn’t been smashed over the head with a mirror or jabbed in the eye with a nail-file – which he would have expected, given the Boggart Lily’s previous track-record.

But Narcissa was rudderless without her ancestors. They were like her gods. Everything she ever did was modeled on their actions. It was like having your muse burnt to a cinder.

And then he remembered the Boggart’s boast that she’d worn Bella’s boots for months after she’d killed her, just to make Narcissa cry. It was as though she didn’t think Narcissa was worth fighting. She didn’t think of her as a warrior who could defend herself – just a sniveling little girl who was too obsessed with clothes. He thought of the way Lily – his Lily – always sarcastically referred to Narcissa as ‘Princess’, and never fought her, or even looked at her, if it could be avoided.

And, it was bizarre, because Narcissa had just the same kind of snobbery towards Lily. She wouldn’t hex muggle-borns in the corridors, or insult them directly, because she thought they were beneath her. It was as though Narcissa and Lily had so much contempt for each other that violence would have cheapened it. They played manipulative games with each other instead.

And this Boggart was following the script – taking the game much further than Lily ever would, of course, but still refusing to face Narcissa directly.  

Either that, or she wanted to draw out Narcissa’s punishment. Maybe killing her, or putting her in St Mungo’s, would have been too quick. Maybe she was like Bella, and saw killing as a waste of agony. Maybe murdering Narcissa would have been skipping over the best bits.

If so, was there more Narcissa could expect from the Boggart? Perhaps it would be a good idea to keep an eye on her, while he was keeping an eye on Jen Morgan.

After a while, he was forced to concede that it would be nice to have some company, even if it was the exasperating, loud, painful company of the Black sisters. Severus was familiar enough with pain to know that some types of it were preferable to others. Sometimes, even an ear-piercing scream was better than silence. These people could distract him. They were mad, but they made him forget what sanity was, so he would stop caring soon enough. They were claiming him, slowly and steadily, as their own. And, since no-one else seemed to want him, he supposed he would let them.
Continuing from Pandora's Box [link]
Sorry it's so late - I've been having terrible writer's block for the past couple of weeks (as the dubious quality of this chapter will probably indicate!)
The Black family Wardrobe is first described in Sanctuary [link]
As ever, hope you enjoy, and thank you for reading! :)
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:iconwearesevenstudios:
WeAreSevenStudios Featured By Owner May 23, 2010  Professional Artisan Crafter
He was a miracle of emotional physics.
:clap: I love that description.

And, when it got quiet – when he was forced to put away his books and try to sleep – he remembered.
Poor Severus. Many a night have I encountered the same thing. :(

However, Salazar Slytherin with a swooning muggle-born in his arms (the muggle-born being in various states of undress) became a favourite subject for magical painters during the Renaissance.
I will never get tired of the ornate details of the Wizarding world you create.

She saw murder as a waste. You couldn’t torture a corpse.
I really think she must see death that way. Why else would she have tortured the Longbottoms to insanity, when killing them would have been faster? Bellatrix just likes to hurt

It was like being the only wizard in a muggle playground all over again.
He is always lonely. I feel so sad for him, just for that aspect of his life.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner May 24, 2010
Yay! :hug: Thank you! I am just the same as Severus - in fact, that description came from personal experience. I am always remembering the bad things that have happened to me before I go to sleep! It's actually kind of comforting to write about his neuroses, because it's like getting my own out in the open, and looking at them from a different perspective. Of course, Sev has a far worse time than I do - but, if he had my life, he would still probably find fault with it like I do! ;) :blush:
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:icondronarron:
dronarron Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2009
He made his body go to classes, write essays, sneer at Gryffindors.

*chuckles*, because it's totally that last thing that would give him away if he didn't do it... :)
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2009
:rofl: A non-sneering Snape would look pretty suspicious...
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:iconnynaeve-3:
Nynaeve-3 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2009
Whatever you may think, I liked this chapter. Interesting stuff about Boggarts.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2009
Thank you! :hug: I'm very glad you liked it. I had fun writing the Boggart stuff, actually. I love J.K. Rowling's magical text-books, so it was fun to imitate their style!
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
You know,

Just as I was starting to worry that maybe you hit a slump and we wouldn't be seeing any updates for a while... you prove I worry for nothing :D.

While, as pretty much all your chapters, I found this one thoroughly enjoyable.. I thought it was rather light hearted and amusing.. or maybe I just have a twisted sense of humor ;). I particularly enjoyed the part where Harpo the Foul suddenly became one of the most fearsome images ever known.... the dreaded bathtub. Bane of dogs and messy children everywhere ;).

Oh and I love the Boggart's ruthless streak. Burning down Narcissa's wardrobe... ha ha ha. The title truly is fitting for this chapter. Damn, you really are nailing evil-Lily perfectly. No wonder Severus was attracted to her.. she's alluring and frightening at the same time. The talents of Lily Evans only without any moral inhibitions or kindness streak... the Severus in her universe really must've been a bastard to jade her so bad. I know she's shaping to be an antagonist but I want to see more of her please :D. She's so much more... refined :D.

I can understand how Severus is rather depressed at the moment (especially since he is without Lily), but if they do get back together.. I hope we get to see him grow again. I know he's not as depressed and angry as he was in the early chapters, but given how this is panning out.... I think both Lily and Sev wouldn't be able to get back together without really expressing how they feel about each other to each other. If that does happen, I hope it'll be something that he could take comfort in.

I must also echo the sentiment shared by the previous reviewers in saying that you really shouldn't lost your confidence. There are so few hp fanfics out there that can even hold a candle to your story, that I can count them on my two hands. Most of what I read out there is so bad that I feel like evacuating the contents of my last meal onto the computer screen :(. Your story by contrast is refreshing.. like a frozen yogurt.. or a booster juice ;).

So yes, please take comfort in the knowledge that by continuing to write, you create a sanctuary for those people like me. Where readers may go and seek refuge from the abysmal crap usually found in the fanfic-verse.

To show you my appreciation (and to keep the idea of drunken Sev/Lily alive), I have enclosed a small contribution.

There once was a school named Durmstrang. Now there where many Durmstrangs in existence, but this particular one was unique, for it existed only in what is known as the Lucy-verse.

And in this unique incarnation of Durmstrang, there existed an even more unique professor of potions, known only as Melorik the Mad. No one knows how he acquired this title, although all that have inquired have come to share his moniker. In addition to making absolutely no sense in the classroom (at least not when speaking), Melorik was well known for blending Alcoholic substances from Eastern Europe with various concoctions of his own devising. Some who have imbibed them remain intoxicated to this very day....

On one particular day, and this day was similar to virtually all others, Melorik the Mad created a concoction comprised of the finest Liquors from Eastern Europe, mixed with a potion of his own devising. The result is a drink of the most exquisite taste, and with a rather "advanced" potency. There have even been tales of possible unknown side effects, although no one but Melorik knows for sure.... he tested them on himself and thus far has been unable to articulate his findings ;).

Regardless, he promptly packaged his masterful creation and sent them to three most lucky recipients:

Severus Snape, Lily Evans... and one Lucy Stone (rumored to be the omnipotent being that ran this particular universe). A note was attached with only three words:

"Keep it up" ;)


Cheers,

Sam
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2009
:rofl: This really made me laugh! I love the story of Melorik the Mad, with his talent for concocting potent alcoholic potions! How much fun would it be to study at Durmstrang and go to his classes!

Thank you so much for this comment, it has really cheered me up! :hug: I really love writing this story, so I'm sure I'll be able to carry on with it! I just have (like Severus) good days and bad days with it!

Yes, the Boggart-Lily is revealing a distinctly mean streak in this chapter (somehow, what she does to Narcissa here seems almost worse than what she did to Avery and Greyback, because it's so much more personal. She REALLY doesn't like Narcissa!) Don't worry, she's definitely going to come into later chapters, I love writing her so much!

And I do like the idea of Lily and Severus getting drunk. It would certainly help them communicate - provided they could remember exactly what they'd said to each other in the morning! Somehow, chapters where they don't interact - where she doesn't challenge his gloomy thoughts - seem so claustrophobic! So, hopefully, I'll be able to write something where they're together soon. The world doesn't seem right when they're apart!
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2009
Lol,

Indeed, Melorik would certainly be an instructor unlike any other ;). I'm glad you enjoyed it.

And yes.. what she did to Narcissa here is just... cruel, yet oh so humbling. I wonder how this Narcissa will turn out. She still clings to her racist sentiments at this stage in her life, but later on as an adult she is much more mellow. In the scene where she visits Sev at Spinners End, she seems very polite and humble. Oh well.. I guess desperation and close proximity to Voldemort works wonders in giving someone a dose of reality.

I look forward to more,

-Sam
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2009
I think Narcissa can be polite and humble when she wants something (as she does in Spinner's End when she wants Severus to save her son), but she can be pretty bigoted and cruel as an adult too. In HBP, when she meets Hermione in the robe-shop, and leaves, saying "Now I know the kind of scum that shops here", I could have throttled her! She never really gets over her snooty upbringing. It's a shame, because the Malfoys are fascinating characters (and I do find myself liking them, the more I write them) but I could never really get over their prejudice.
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:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2009
Hmm,

You're right, I never thought of that. Looks like she is pretty bigotted regardless. I suppose maybe the only thing that changed is her attitude towards Snape then.... which even now is rather ambigous. She insults him quite often... but at the same time she almost slept with him, and now begs him for help.

It's funny that Sev doesn't rub it in more, but I guess he considers it beneath him. One moment she calls him a filthy half blood, and the next she's grovelling :p.
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2009
That's true, she's always changing her attitude to Sev. It must make him feel dizzy! I guess, when she's haughty, he can't believe she was ever nice, and when she's nice, he's too suspicious of what she's after to enjoy it!
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:iconflameofthewest7:
FlameoftheWest7 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
Not the Wardrobe! We knew it was coming, but it's still such a terrible blow--I loved that place! (Great chapter title, by the way!)

I so enjoy your descriptions of the Black sisters, and Snape's perception of them--particularly the way his and Bella's personalities clash. This chapter reminded me so much of their interactions in Spinner's End; the group dynamic was on target. Nice work!

I am having writer's block too. :( I'm still working on my Lucius/Narcissa fanfic about their wedding, and I'm struggling through the reception. I think I might skip a bit, and come back to it after I've written another part. This helps sometimes!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2009
Thank you! :hug: I'm so glad you liked it. I feel very bad about the Wardrobe too! I hate the idea of history being destroyed. And it was the worst thing that could have been done to Narcissa, (well, except hurting Lucius, I guess!) because she worships her clever female ancestors so much. :(

This chapter was totally inspired by the group dynamic between Sev, Bellatrix and Narcissa in Spinner's End - particularly because I wanted so much more bickering between Severus and Bella in that scene in the movie! ;)

I'm sorry that you've been suffering from writer's block! I think you're right, going on to a different part of the story can help. That's what I think I'll try with the next chapter. I'm really looking forward to reading your description of Lucius and Narcissa's wedding (I love reading about weddings - especially lavish, pure-blood ones!) :)
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:iconvictory-gin:
Victory-Gin Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009  Hobbyist Photographer
Please don't lose confidence! I think your story is brilliant! I check your page daily in hopes of an update. Reading about the Black sisters is as entertaining as always and that line "since no-one else seemed to want him, he supposed he would let them," was just heartbreaking. As well as this one,"it was like being the only wizard in a muggle playground all over again. And, this time, there wasn’t going to be a cute little muggle-born flying off her swing to make him feel less alone." That was just devastating to read. I like how your able to convey hopelessness and depression without mucking it up with teen angst. Very lovely, indeed.

Oh, and I had a question for you. In the chapter where Lily regains her memories, she mentions something about Dumbledore stealing some of her memories, but that's never brought up again. Also, in the beginning chapters there was a lot of talk about the Dark Snitch and James learning to fear it in the future, but again, I don't remember reading anything further about it. Are these some abandoned plot devices? Or will be be brought up again in the future? Or did I miss something?

As I've mentioned before, I'm very fascinated with the story, so please don't get discouraged. The number of decent Lily/Sev fanfiction out there is pretty small and the number of COMPLETED Lily/Sev fanfiction (one-shots not included) is almost unheard of. Please break this horrible curse!
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
Thank you, that's so kind of you! It really means a lot to me that you're enjoying the story! :hug:

Yes, there are lots of thing from the early chapters that I wanted to come back to, but never quite managed to. So, all the business with the Dark Snitch was a part of the plot that I lost interest in, but intended to come back to later (I find it quite hard to write bits with James Potter in - I think because I sympathize so much with Severus! ;)) I will try to complete that story someday, when I can find some sympathy for James Potter! :giggle:

And, as for Dumbledore stealing Lily's memories, I think that was just a paranoid reaction on her part. I toyed with the idea that Dumbledore intended for her to forget her liaison with Severus, but I don't think he did. I think it was just that not all of her memories came back at once. Although I do think that Dumbledore dislikes Sev and Lily's relationship, because it reminds him of his own damaging relationship with Gellert Grindelwald.

I don't know how the story's going to end but I do know that writing about these characters is pretty much the only thing that makes me happy, so I hope I'll be able to stick with it to the end (however it ends!). It makes it so much easier to know that people enjoy reading it, though, so thank you again! :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have writer's block too. It is going around, apparently, and I don't know why. It is horribly frustrating, when I owe someone a story for that kiriban thingy.

There were parts of this chapter that seemed a bit disjointed, but overall I enjoyed it, so I don't think that the writer's block can be all that bad ;-).
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:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009
Thank you, I'm really glad you enjoyed the chapter. :hug: The writer' block was more a sort of crisis of confidence. I felt as though I just needed to post something today, in order to get over it, so it might be a bit unpolished. I just wanted to get back into the habit of posting things here. I always enjoy writing Sev getting exasperated with Bella and Narcissa, though! :)
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:iconnorthangel27:
northangel27 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
and I always love reading it :giggle:
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