A week had passed since Severus woke up in the Hospital Wing. He had been tossing and turning throughout the night, restless with energy. It was still early in the morning, the sun had barely begun to rise when Severus heard voices in the hallway. He recognized the soft docile tones of Dumbledore and the erratic ones of one Sirius Black. Severus groaned in annoyance. What unfair thing was Black complaining about now?
Severus threw the covers off of his body and swung his feet over the edge of his bed. He gave a slight wince as his feet touched the cold stone floor. Pushing off the bed, he felt his leg groan in protest. While the bone had been completely healed, his muscles were unaccustomed to carrying his weight still. He could manage walking for fifteen minutes before needing to rest. The need for rest was annoying. There were important things that Severus needed to attend to.
As Severus gingerly walked closer to the large oak doors of the Hospital Wing, the voices of the men arguing grew louder.
“I need to see him.” Sirius bellowed.
“Now is not the time for that.” Dumbledore replied.
“I’m so sorry, Albus. I did try to tell him…” The voice of Lupin began
“I don’t care. I have a right to see him!” Sirius interrupted.
Severus pulled the door open, announcing his presence.
“And do what, Black, interrupt the healing environment with your unbridled chaotic energy.” Severus poked.
The scene before him would have been comical, had it not been for the people involved. Dumbledore was still in his night robes. Remus was dressed in his regular traveling cloak, though it was looking more distressed. Remus seemed to be holding back Black, who was dressed in his “well mannered high class wizard family” attire.
“Go wash your hair, Snivellus.” Black retorted
“Sirius.” Remus hissed, trying to hold him back
“Ah, back to the childish remarks.”
“If I was in my right mind…”
“Ah, so Azkaban took its toll, did it? Anyways, if you were in your right mind, you would be thanking me.”
“Thanking you? You’re the reason…”
“That Harry is alive.” Dumbledore stated softly, cutting through the argument.
Black continued to glare at Severus, nostrils flaring with rage. Lupin stood in between the grown men.
“Severus risked his life to rescue Harry. He is the only reason that Harry is alive. The boy never would have made it out of Malfoy Manor alive.”
Black’s face twisted into a red grimace as he held back his retort.
“Breathe.” Lupin commanded.
Sirius let out a breath through pursed lips as he turned back toward the headmaster.
“I still have a right to see my Godson.”
“Actually you don’t.” Severus interrupted before Dumbledore could answer.
“That is not for you to decide.” Sirius exploded.
“Actually it is.” Snape chirped, removing a document from his night robe.
He handed it to Dumbledore before Sirius could hastily obtain it. He looked over it studiously before handing it to Remus. Snape felt a sense of satisfaction in watching Sirius’ face turn a royal purple with outrage.
“You’re saying that Harry is…” Remus began.
“My biological son, yes.”
“And that Lily…” Dumbledore continued
“Is his mother, yes.”
“This is bullshit, Lily would never!” Sirius exclaimed
“Lily would never do what, Sirius? Try to find support in an old friend?” Snape argued
“Sleep with you.”
“Why? Because she believed I was the enemy? The true enemy lived in her home.”
Sirius stepped towards Severus. Remus stepped in between the two wizards again.
“What are you implying, Severus?” Dumbledore inquired.
“I’m not implying, I know for a fact that Potter was abusing Lily.”
“Liar!” Sirius roared.
The wizard lunged. Remus, who had been blocking Sirius’ path, reacted out of instinct. He shoved Sirius in the chest with a surprising amount of strength. Sirius let out a yelp of shock, tripping over his feet and landing on the castle’s stone floors. He looked up at Remus in shock.
“Will you stop reacting like a child, Sirius?” Remus asked before turning around. “What are you talking about, Snape?”
“I’ll show you.”
The rain was clicking lightly against the window of Severus’ Herefordshire home. It was late, he was getting ready for bed, when there was a knock on the door. At first, Severus mistook it for a rumble of thunder. He looked out the window, noticing a shadow standing in front of his door. He pulled his wand out of his robes as he approached the door. There shouldn’t have been a person for miles and it was late. He raised his wand as he opened the door.
“Lily!” Severus exclaimed, lowering his wand.
Lily Evans was standing on his front stoop. Her clothes and hair were damp. She was shaking.
“Sev.” Lily replied in a shaking voice.
“Come in.” He ushered her through his doorway.
Now in the light, Severus could see the fresh bruises on her face, a cut on her head. She carried one of her arms gingerly. He could see tears forming in her eyes.
“Oh my god, Lily. What happened?” Severus questioned as he reached forward towards her face.
She jumped in fear, wincing slightly as she did. Severus drew away slightly
“I’m not going to hurt you, Lily. I promise.” He reassured. “Can I take a look?”
Lily shook her head in agreement. He reached forward slowly. As he cupped her face, Lily jumped again.
“It’s okay, You’re safe.” Severus reminded her as he examined the bruise and cut.
Severus could feel anger boiling in his stomach. Someone had hurt Lily.
“I had nowhere else to go.”
“It’s okay. Let’s clean you up a little.” He instructed, guiding her into his living room.
Lily sat gently on the single chair in the room. She sat down gently, wincing as her arm moved. Severus went over to the display cabinet. He removed a first aid kit from a drawer. Turning around, a wave of shock washed over him. Lily was sitting in his living room. It had been years since he had seen her. While Severus was sure that the circumstances behind her being here were not positive, he was still overjoyed by seeing her. He pulled the coffee table over in front of Lily and sat on it. Lily was staring off into the crackling fire.
“Lily.” Severus called, not wanting to spook her by physically touching her.
Lily turned and looked at him.
“Sev.” She whimpered. “I’m sorry. I didn’t have anywhere else to go.”
“Lily, do not apologize. Do you want tea or water?”
Lily shook her head no. She was trying to hold back her tears.
“What happened?” Severus asked as he started to open his first aid kit.
“James came home...He was drunk...We had a fight.” Lily informed between frantic breaths.
“Did he do this to you?” Severus asked, turning back to Lily.
She nodded her head. Lily burst into tears as she threw her arms around Severus’ neck in a hug of desperation. Severus wrapped his arms around her back, squeezing gently as her crying crescendoed. She was holding him like he was the only thing keeping her tethered to life.
“I’ve got you.” Severus whispered softly, gently rubbing her back.
Severus held her for what seemed like hours. He could feel her tears soaking his black shirt. He felt her chest heave into his, gasping for breath. He repeated you’re safe to her in an attempt to calm her. He was aware that he was getting blood on his shirt, but it didn’t matter. Lily needed comfort. He was able to give that to her. She began to quiet, sniffling softly into his shoulder. Severus loosened his grip so she could pull away.
“Sev, your shirt.” she sniffled.
“Pay no mind to it. It is just a shirt. Let me clean you up.”
Severus began dabbing rubbing alcohol at the cut just above her eye. She hissed in pain as he cleaned the blood off of her face. He was trying to keep his anger to a simmer as he imagined what had occurred earlier that night.
“It isn’t a deep cut, so that is good.” Severus commented. “Let me get you some ice for your bruises.”
Severus stood up slowly and walked into the kitchen. Turning the faucet on, Severus pulled down two tea cups. He filled the pot, placed it on the oven and turned on the flame. He placed two hands on the counter. Images of what Potter might have done to Lily flashed through Severus’ mind. With each image, Severus could see red creep onto the edge of his vision. His anger reached a boiling point. The tea pot screamed as Severus swiped his hand over the counter, sending the teacups flying into the opposite wall. All Severus could hear over the hissing teapot was his own heavy breathing.
“Sev.” Lily called softly.
Severus took a deep breath before replying.
“It’s okay. I just dropped the cups.” He pulled his wand out of his robe. “Reparo.”
The teacups rebuilt themselves on the counter. Severus poured the tea into the cups, grabbed a bag of ice, and brought everything into the living room on a tray.
“Here is some tea, Lily.” Severus stated, placing the tray on the table next to him.
He handed her the ice bag. She placed it gingerly on her face.
“Now let me see that arm.”
She gingerly moved her arm towards him, wincing in pain as she extended it. Severus prodded gently, noting where she hissed in pain. He pulled his wand off the tray and waved it over her arm. Lily’s wrist began to glow orange, her arm just above glowed red. He waved it back over, causing the colors to disappear. He flicked his wand over his shoulder, causing the display cabinet to open. A bottle of skele-gro floated over to the pair. Severus gently laid Lily’s arm in her lap to grab the bottle out of the air. Severus poured the proper dose thinking ‘That son of a bitch broke her arm.
“Here drink this.” He handed the cup to her. “It seems that your arm is broken and your wrist is severely sprained. Skele-gro should mend the injuries over night.”
Lily drank the cup whole before looking at Severus.
“Thank you, Sev.”
“You are welcome and you are always welcome here.”
There was a moment of silence between them. Severus cleared his throat before speaking.
“Lily, what happened?”
“Sev…” She whimpered.
“Do you want to file a report?”
“No Sev, I’m not filing a report.”
“Is this the first time?”
Lily shook her head yes
“I know how scary it is,how lonely it feels. You know what my father did to me, Lily.”
“But what, lily? He didn’t mean to...He was drunk….You made him angry. I know all of those excuses. Abuse is still abuse. You don’t deserve that.”
Severus could see tears growing in Lily’s eyes.
“Lily.” Severus whispered gently “What happened?”
Lily pulled the ice back off of her face, placing it on her lap and fidgeted with the ice cubes. Patiently, Severus let silence fill the room.
“James went out.” Lily squeaked so softly that Severus would have missed her speaking had he not been looking at her. “And he got drunk. James came stumbling in the house. I don’t even know what he started yelling about. He usually does when he is drunk so I ignored him. He kept getting angrier and angrier. I wasn’t feeding into it and it was making the situation worse. He came into the living room and before I knew it, he grabbed me. I jumped up and started yelling at him. As soon as I started yelling at him, he punched me.”
Lily took a deep shaky breath, tears streaming down her face.
“It all happened so fast. I kept trying to get away and he kept pushing me around. I ran up the stairs and he said something about running away from him. He caught me at the top of the stairs and threw me into the wall. Then, I think he pushed me down the stairs. I managed to run out of the door. I kept running, I didn’t stop. When I was far enough away from the house, I just apparated. I wasn’t even really thinking of a specific place. When I landed, I was outside of your house. I could see you in the window.”
No one spoke as Lily began weeping again.
Severus breathed as he came out of the memory. The emotions of that night were still fresh. His legs were shaking from exertion. He looked over at the other three wizards. Remus and Dumbledore had astonished looks on their faces. Sirius’ face held nothing but contempt
“The next morning she went back.” Severus explained, taking a seat in the nearest chair. “She swore if it happened again, she would leave him. She showed up at my house a week later with her bags. Lily stayed for about a week, but it was during that time when Harry was conceived. If you still don’t believe me, we know that the ministry conducts heritage testing upon birth and keeps the records in the department of mysteries.”
“This...has been fabricated. It’s a sham!” Sirius stammered
“While I am as shocked as you, there is nothing within the memory that would appear that it has been altered.” Remus commented.
“And I figured I would spare you from seeing the actual memory where it occurs.” Severus smirked.
“But James…” Black began
“Lily told James that he was the father. So naturally, he would have you named Godfather.” Severus interrupted
“I will look into the matter.” Dumbledore announced softly, cutting through the argument. “Until this has been fully investigated, Harry will not be having any visitors.”
“But…” Sirius attempted
“That is my final word. Harry is still alive and being well cared for. There will be no more discussion on the matter until it can be investigated. If you have nothing else Sirius, I suggest you and Remus should leave. Severus, you should be resting.” Dumbledore ordered as he stalked over to his desk.
The older wizard began writing at his desk and did not speak. Remus and Sirius left via floo. Severus left of his own accord, leaving the headmaster on his own.