Blinking against the darkness, Harry stood up and looked round. The
only light in the three Broomsticks came from the full moon visible through the
windows. Harry heard a faint rustling beside him. He knew he was invisible to
whoever was there – it was only a memory. Moving closer he saw with a shock it
was Severus Snape, although a much younger one than the one he knew now. He
looked about twenty or twenty-one, Harry guessed. He still had greasy black
hair, although it was shorter. He was sitting on a bar stool, looking almost
comic. Harry had never imagined Snape could even go into a pub. It all
seemed very out of place, like it shouldn’t be allowed. He fitted much better
in the potions dungeon. Harry knew he was in Snape’s memory, although he didn’t
know why Snape had even bothered to put this in. He simply sat, silent, on the
bar stool, for at least five minutes. Suddenly, Just as Harry started to worry
if he was really in a genuine pensieve, he heard a noise coming from the door.
It was three short knocks, followed by a voice.
voice called. It was a woman’s voice. Harry felt intrigued. Snape was meeting a
woman? It was even more comical than Snape alone in a pub at night.
Harry watched as Snape walked over to the door and yanked it open. Somebody
stepped inside and closed the door.
“I didn’t think
you would come.” Severus said silkily.
“Nor did I,
Severus.” Said the woman’s voice. “Especially as you never told me why you
wanted to meet.” She paused. Harry tried to see her but couldn’t in the dark.
“I almost didn’t come. I have more important things to do, and more important
places to be, as you well know.” She sighed. “It’s very dark in here.”
“I didn’t want
anyone to think we were here.”
“Oh, for heavens
sake, Severus.” The woman snapped. “No one will even be around here at this
time.” She pointed her wand at the ceiling. “Lumos Edificus.” She muttered.
Lights suddenly lit up the familiar three Broomsticks. Harry watched as Snape
and the woman sat on low chairs around a table. She had her back to Harry. He
walked round, hoping to get a better look. As soon as he saw her face, he
froze. He recognized her instantly. He had only seen her twice, yet there was
no mistake. It was definitely…
spoke to the table. Harry felt his heart in his throat. He had seen his mother
in the Mirror of Erised and in Snape’s Pensieve, but this was different. She
was right in front of his here, just like in real life. He walked over to her,
taking her face in. Her long, dark red hair was longer than he had seen it
before. It reached halfway down her back. Her eyes shocked him. They were so
like his, yet so…sad. He reached out to touch her face, feeling his fingers
tingle. He couldn’t feel her as his fingertips brushed her face. Of course, he
thought. Of course. This was a memory? He could make no impression on memories
in pensieves. He looked at her beautiful face for a few moments, before
switching his attention back to Snape. Why was his mother here? With Snape?
“Lily… I just
want to thank you for agreeing to this.”
“I don’t know
what I’m agreeing to, yet.” She didn’t smile.
“Just to meet
me. To talk to me.”
Severus. It’s four in the morning. This must take no more than an hour.”
“It won’t take
up even that.”
“Go ahead then.”
She leaned back, her eyes surveying Snape with a mixture of dislike, boredom
“Lily… you know
how I…” He trailed off, looking hard at his shoes. “You know how I feel. About
you, I mean.” He paused. Lily didn’t speak. Her eyes remained impassive. “Lily,
this is a terrible time for us all. You know that – especially for you.”
“What do you
mean, Severus?” She had no concern in her voice.
have done in the past few months…years… I can barely bear to think about. I
have performed terrible, terrible evil. Under the Dark Lord’s service, I have
not been…I have not been…well. It is enough to say I am guilty of terrible
“I hope you are
one of the few who believe me I have now turned against him, and am now loyal
to Albus Dumbledore.”
“Time will tell
Severus, time will tell.”
“Lily… I have
placed my life in huge danger as a spy working against the Dark Lord. I only
want you to know that…well…Oh, lily…” He stopped for a few moments. Harry
watched him, his heart pounding. This was Snape as he had never seen him
before. “You already know that He Who Must Not Be Named is after your family.”
“I know, also,
that you have many spells and charms protecting them.”
“What are you
saying?” She sounded angry now. Harry could see how tired she was. He was still
so confused… what was going on?
“Lily, this is
all so damned hard…” He trailed into silence, his hand resting on the bridge of
his nose, his eyes closed. When he opened them again, they were sparkling.
Harry felt his heart skip a beat. “I don’t know if we will all make it through
this.” His voice shook. Harry felt almost ill watching Severus Snape struggle
to hold himself together. Seeing Snape upset was sickeningly strange. “Lily, I
want you to know, that I have never forgotten how you stood up for me at
school, when no one else did…”
“That was a long
time ago.” She folded her arms.
“You were the
only one who… And when I see you…even think of you with – with him…”
“His name is
James, Severus.” Her voice was like ice.
“Lily, I can
give you so much more!” He almost shouted.
Severus.” She stood up. Harry gasped loudly. No…no…this couldn’t be right.
Snape and…his mother? No, there was a mistake, this couldn’t be…
“Lily, you don’t
understand!” Snape wailed.
“I don’t want to
listen to this!” Lily’s eyes flashed angrily. She started towards the door.
give me a chance, please!” He followed her. Harry felt his jelly-like feet
follow Snape too. He knew he could only follow the owner of a memory, not stay
alone or with someone else.
shouted, giving off an aura of power and strength. “I have a husband! James is
the one for me, not you! You can never love me more than him – and I can
certainly never feel for you a fraction of what I feel for him!” She spoke
quietly, yet there was a dangerous undercurrent in her voice.
Severus! I have a child! Together, Harry and James are worth a hundred of you!”
seemed to be close to tears.
“How dare you do
this to me when you know how much danger me and my family are in! How
dare you when you know how dangerous it is for me to leave my house! I would
die at the drop of a hat for Harry…or James.” She was shaking in anger.
cannot, nor will not, ever love you. You flatter yourself that I would even
look at you without feeling ill.” With a last sniff from Snape, she turned and
walked out the door. Snape collapsed on a chair, his face in his hands. Harry
watched him breathing deeply, clearly trying to pull himself together. He
couldn’t quite believe what he had heard. Snape had loved his mother? He tried
to get his head round the idea, trying to see what holes that idea could fill
in. But before he could even quite understand it, everything in front of him