Cauldrons and Lilies

Chapter 22

I felt I needed to redeem myself lol.

This chapter has been written for weeks now. They all have been. I have a couple chapters more written but I won't be able to post in a while. I have another story (Game of Thrones for those interested) and need to catch up on the writing for that one. I really appreciate your reviews and support . I hope this is more to your liking. Keep reading and reviewing.

Chapter 22

Molly gave her a blue robe. It was very loose but Lily did not mind. She wanted to sleep and never wake up. She was alone in the world. She had no hopes that Tuney would welcome her in her home. It was clear that she wanted nothing to do with her and her kind. She cried herself to sleep. She clutched the loose light blue robes tightly.

She woke up an hour later. Lily could not sleep. She wanted to see him. It did not matter that she was engaged to James. She lost her parents today and the last thing she wanted to do was fake a love she did not feel for her fiancée. James Potter loved her, desired her but it was not enough. Severus existed and he was the love of her life. She wanted to be with him, Severus, her best friend and confidante, the boy who told her about magic, the boy who kissed her for the first time. Lily Evans wanted Severus Snape and no one else.

She felt awful, her parents were dead she did not have Severus by her side. She thought back to when she became James's girlfriend. She had done it out of spite. Severus and Marlene would be back together in no time. She was so stupid. At the time she felt lonely and wanted to get a reaction out of Severus who seemed happy to just watch and never approach her. Severus rejected her once and James, he was always there and liked her. James really liked her. Having a relationship with her fellow Gryffindor was easy. There were no house rivalry, no feelings on her part. She liked him and to some extent liked his company when he was not being at total arse.

Severus presented a challenge. Lily did not know if he loved her but it sure seemed that way. Sev defended her, helped her, made sure she was happy, and took care of her. Sometimes when he thought she was not looking Sev would look at her as if she was precious but he never said anything. She had spent four years wondering why Severus did not ask her to be his girlfriend. She would not think twice and say yes. When Marlene died things changed. She thought the reason why Severus did not ask her was because he was in love with Marlene, even though he denied this when they broke up. Severus had been sad; they had all been devastated by the Ravenclaw's death. She waited and did not break up with James because James was easy. He did not ask for much. She did not want to be alone. Petunia once told her that no boy would ever be with her because she was a freak. Lily tried to rationalize and understand that Tuney was lying and hurting but she could not help but think that maybe Petunia was right. Severus did not seek her. He did not say anything to her; she did not even have those kisses she would give him from time to time. He had not kissed her since before she became James's girlfriend.

That night, after James proposed to her she went to Severus. She cried bitterly, and thought back to their conversation. He was in love with someone else. They way he spoke, how he looked at her. She dared hope that it was she but why did he never say anything? If he was interested, if he loved her why didn't he do anything? She had instigated all their kisses. Lily remembered Tuney's words. If he were interested he would make a move. The young woman had thought, "Now, he will tell me he loves me. I won't marry James. Tell me you love me." But it never happened and she had said yes. James had wanted to get physical then but Lily held her ground. James was a gentleman in that sense. He did not push her after she made clear she was not ready. Lily sat up on the cot and wiped her red and blotchy face. She tied the robe around her and stood up. Severus, all she could think was Severus. Lily needed to see him.

She slipped out of the room and went in search of Severus. Molly Weasley had said that he was to sleep in the attic. She gingerly climbed the stairs and opened the door. She stepped in and gasped. He had his wand trained at her.

"It's me Sev." She said in a small voice. He relaxed, "You can't do that. I could have killed you." He hissed.

"I'm sorry." She repeated in the same voice. "I couldn't sleep."

He hugged her. She hugged him back. "What am I going to do now?" She asked him. He shook his head. "You finish your training as a healer. Marry Potter and move away from here. We keep fighting." He said calmly.

She stiffened, "I'm not going to marry James." Lily sat on the bed and clutched her robe again.

Severus's first reaction was happiness. She could see it in his eyes and then he looked scared, "but you have to."

Lily was puzzled, "I don't have to. I don't love him." Lily held her breath, some Gryffindor she was.

Her best friend sat next to her. "You have to love him." He whispered.

"I tried, but I don't. I can't. Every time he's near me all I can think are dark eyes. Your eyes, Sev, I don't want to marry him. I went out with him because I thought he would be right. You said you loved me like a sister and you hated him. I thought maybe if I go out with him you'd pay attention. He's James fucking Potter. You've hated each other since you were eleven and…" Her voice broke. " I thought you would keep me away from him but you didn't. Sev, you didn't care. I realized that maybe you did not care and stayed with him because it was easy. James was there and he did not challenge me. He doesn't know my favorite film. He's not you. " She sobbed and hugged him.

He hugged her back. "I love you Severus. I've loved you since I was twelve. I did not know it then but I know it now. I want to marry you; my best friend." She took his hands and made eye contact with him. "I want to have your babies Severus, have a house, a cat and grow old with you. Sev, we can die tomorrow. I don't want to die without you knowing that I love you. No matter how much time I have, I want to spend it with you. Severus I don't want to pretend that I love James. I am through. I want to the world to know that I love you."

She did not wait for an answer and hugged him again. "You don't have to say anything Severus."

Lily saw him struggle and then she saw something she had not seen in his eyes in a very long time. He did not hide anything or hold anything back. "I've loved you since I was nine years old Lily Evans. I've loved you in silence because I thought Potter was the better option. Your choice, I have struggled Lils." He pushed her hair back. "Every time I saw you with him I thought it was better. I told myself, "they are meant to be together. It has to be that way" but no matter how many times I thought and rethought it you didn't look happy. I had doubts because you did not look happy. My mum died Lily and no matter how much I tried to change things, to protect you and her. Things happened and I have no control. Dad came back and Gussie was born, everything changed but mum died, your parents are dead too. Marlene died before her time. I don't know how things will happen. A lot has changed." Severus rambled. He made no sense.

Lily frowned and said, "Severus, I don't understand." He shook his head. "I don't know what's going to happen Lily. Some things changed and others did not. I love you; that hasn't changed and will not change. No matter how much I struggle with it. I won't anymore. Maybe you'll die but this time I will be there with you. You are right; whatever time we have is ours. No more hiding, no more excuses." He repeated and kissed her like he had never kissed her before. Lily felt her whole body on fire. She felt lightheaded conflicted. Her parents were dead and nothing would bring them back but she had Severus.

She felt sleepy then, a weight had been lifted from her chest. Lily lay on the small cot. Sev waved his wand and got into the covers too. He held her and kissed her cheek. She smiled. Lily wanted more kisses. She turned and looked at Severus's face. "What do we do now?" She asked once again. He smiled, a tiny smile. She touched his hand and his fingers. From a very young age his hands had fascinated Lily Evans. As a child Sev had the longest fingers she had ever seen. When they had their first potions class; it had been an experience to see Sev work.

"We fight Lily." He said with a renewed voice.

The young girl kissed him. She wanted to kiss him all night. Severus kissed her back with a mixture of longing and desire. She gasped when his cold fingers made contact with the flimsy material around her stomach. She opened her eyes and watched his reaction. His hair was mussed. "We can wait." He said in a strained voice.

Lily nodded, she was more than ready but there was a silent wall. James, she had to break up with him first. She nodded and hugged him. She closed her eyes and hoped no more nightmares interrupted her sleep.

She woke up with Severus hugging her. The weight of the world crashed once again. Eileen Snape, Rose and Harry Evans were dead. Severus was awake too. He was as somber as she was.

"They are dead." She croaked.

"They are," he replied with a calm voice.

Lily nodded. She breathed deeply and moved away from bed. It was pretty early but she had to make her way back to the bedroom Molly had given to her. "I have to go. Mrs. Weasley will no doubt check on me as soon as she wakes up." Lily said. Severus placed his hands on her back and rubbed the sore spots away.

"You had better go then." He replied but did not let go of her.

Lily nodded but did not get up either. She was content there in his arms, being just being. For those few minutes she could forget her parent's deaths and the fact that she was homeless, helpless and everything was going to change.

Eventually she had to get up and go to her room. As she expected Molly Weasley checked on her and helped her transfigure some of her robes into muggle clothing for her parent's funeral. She could not say the words out loud yet. She was able to fit the robes into a simple black knee high dress. She would have to buy clothes, find a place, face Petunia and bury her parents today. She cried again and looked in the small mirror in the bathroom.

"You have to stop. They are dead, they will not come back, and mum would not want to cry in every corner. You can do this. You will do this. You will stop crying and face this." She said loudly and combed her hair into a neat braid.

She stepped downstairs and found Tobias Snape in a simple black muggle suit. Severus wore a black suit too. Arthur Weasley wore his robes; Molly was busy with the twins in her arms, getting them in high chairs. The little ones were rambunctious. She saw the eldest Bill, seated and eating his breakfast. Charlie and Gussie were side by side eating cereal. Percy, the third son was sleepily babbling into his bits of cut up toast. It was surreal; Tobias, Sev and her contrasted painfully into what could have been a normal busy family day. It was a beautiful day; spring had come and Ottery St. Catchpole bloomed with flowers and birds sang everywhere.

Augustus did not understand his mother was gone. He happily chatted with Charlie and Percy who babbled too even though he was too young to truly understand what they did or said. She sat down next to Sev and looked at the food in front of her. Molly Weasley was a great cook no doubt but she could not bring herself to eat any of it.

Arthur finished his breakfast and addressed them. "I am truly sorry for your losses. Dumbledore will be here within the hour." The man said solemnly. Tobias nodded, as did Severus. Lily fought a wave of fresh new tears and nodded too. The wizard kissed his wife and children. He left through the floo.

Molly efficiently readied her children for their daily activities. Bill had said good morning and left for his room to work on his maths and grammar. Charlie and Percy seemed used to the routine and went to the living room to play with some blocks. The older boy dragged Gus with them. The twins demanded Molly's attention as soon as Bill walked out of the dinning room.

"Molly, we are thankful for your hospitality. You do not have to go into any trouble for us." She said honestly.

The woman shook her head and grabbed her hands. They were still sitting around the breakfast table. "It's no trouble at all. These are dark times and we have to help each other. I did not want Arthur to join the Order. When my brothers came and told me about Dumbledore's organization I was against it." She looked at her and Tobias anxiously.

"I don't have any problems with muggles or muggleborns…" Lily understood that Molly did not want to appear as a bigot. She was sure Molly was not against her any other muggleborn. She searched for words to reassure her but at the end it was Tobias who eloquently found the words.

"You are a mum. You are afraid for your children. This war is senseless." The older man said.

He then looked at Severus, "your mother was right. I was a fool, afraid of not being able to support her and my sons in another country but we have to go Severus."

Lily's heart thumped, they could not leave. It was neither Severus nor Lily who made a case against fleeing. "The attack was not random." Dumbledore appeared inside the house with a loud crack.

He strode in and sat down. Molly made to leave the room but the headmaster stopped her. "Do not leave Molly. The children are safe in your living room, even Fred and George who will be a delight to teach I'm sure."

Molly sat next to her. "Mr. Snape, you and Augustus must stay hidden. Molly, I must ask this of you. They will need a place to stay. Voldemort targeted Eileen because of her magical abilities and because of you Severus. They wanted her for her to have leverage over you." Lily gasped and held his hand tightly.

"You must stay hidden Mr. Snape. Neither the muggle world nor the wizarding world is safe for you now. I believe the Dark Lord is satisfied with his raids. He believes you shared your wife's fate."

Tobias blinked twice. "We can stay here. Young lady, you have been very good to me and my sons but we cannot impose."

"Dad, it is not a matter of imposing. You are not safe; you have no means of defending yourself or Gus for that matter. I agree with the headmaster you have to hide but not here. Molly's family should not be in any danger because of us." Severus said with glint in his eyes.

"I thought you would say that child." He then addressed Molly. "Molly dear, we will place your home under the Fidelius charm.

"It does not work. Eileen placed that thing in our home and they still murdered her." Tobias hissed, losing his temper or so Lily thought.

"I am afraid the charm worked Mr. Snape. Eileen was said to be Diagon Alley minutes before her execution. Witnesses claim that a hooded figure grabbed her hand as she disapparated." Lily understood then.

The headmaster proceeded. "Eileen struggled but it was too late and apparated inside her home with the hooded figure. The Evans were monitored too. He has an unhealthy interest in you Severus and Lily." She gulped. Sev squeezed her hand.

"Molly, I have no doubts that your family will be safe. He will never expect the Weasleys to house a Slytherin's father and brother. They have no indications to believe Arthur or your brothers know Severus or keep any sort of relationship. Tobias and Augustus would be perfectly hidden in plain sight. The fidelius charm and your protective spells are a true precaution." He said with his kind blue eyes.

Molly looked completely ambushed. "I have to wait for Arthur. Professor, I don't know." She said in a low scared voice.

Lily could not help but sympathize. Severus was outraged. "Molly, you don't have to do this." He stood up. "I will find a place for dad and Gus."

"Your father is a muggle. He has no means of defenses. If there is word that he is alive. He and your brother will be in grave danger."

"There has to be another place." Severus proposed.

"Nowhere but here. This is the perfect place for him and your brother. Molly, I am sure you understand there must be sacrifices made for the Greater Good."

She nodded. "The charms will be enough and you are correct Professor. No one will suspect me or my husband of helping Slytherins." Lily heard her tone and understood that Molly tried to convince herself. Lily knew that unconvincing tone, the one she used every time she told herself she loved Severus as a brother or that James was perfect for her.