Flashing images of Snape and Lily flashed in front of him, blurred around the edges as Snape tried to keep him out. The Scene changed rapidly; Snape in Dumbledores office after her death. “No one must know.” Snape stresses, the pain strikingly clear in his voice as tears began to shine in his eyes. Years of anguish felt by the older man; the sense of loss he had felt when Dumbledore had taken Harry to those muggles, the burning hatred he had felt when he found out what they did to him, the uselessness he felt at not being able to intervene. ‘You’re a coward Severus’ the voice in his mind told him each time. ‘The world wouldn’t be able to deal with the revelation’ another countered.
“Lily, after all this time?”
Harry was suddenly thrown back into reality, pushed out from the older mans’ head, both their chest heaving as they leant against opposing walls. There was deathly silence between the pair as they tried to comprehend what had just happened. A strangled sound broke through the air, although neither knew who it came from.
“Why?” Harry finally spoke, the single word asking a million questions. Why did he never tell him, why didn’t he step up when James and Lily were killed, why did Lily stay with James in the first place if all of this was true? All of them swimming around his head as he tried to focus his eyes on Snape.
“I couldn’t.” Snape regained his composure somewhat. “Dumbledore had me convinced that if the truth came out, it wouldn’t end well. You know the role he’s had me play Harry. There were many times I wanted to step in and tell you over the years, but it didn’t bode well for his plan. He decided it was the best to keep in the dark in order to keep you safe. I understand it was also partially for the benefit of the rest of the world. How would they react if the truth came out, that their saviour was the result of an affair. That Lily and James weren’t the strong couple everyone thought them to be? I’m a proud man, but I will admit that I was backed into a corner and my choice taken away from me. I’m not the cold, hard man everyone thinks I am Harry. It goes to show, appearances aren’t always what they seem.” He could almost visibly see the cogs turning in Harry’s head as he processed what he was hearing.
“You have your mothers eyes. Nothing has ever been said about your father, correct?” Snape’s heart was racing, but he felt he had to carry on talking now because he didn’t know how this was going to end, or where they were going to go from there.
Harry felt his strength start to return. Everything Snape said made sense; he would have probably remained skeptical had he not seen inside the mans head, felt the pain in his memories, but having been through that he suddenly felt a shift, a new connection forming between them.
“So maybe we didn’t have the last 15 years, we can make up for it now. Right?” Harry questioned, an involuntary tremble in his voice.
“We will still have to keep it a secret, at least for the time being, until the war is over - if Voldemort was to find out the truth, he would be sure to use it against you.” Snape reasoned as he approached the boy, his son. “But yes, Harry we can.” placing a hand on Harry’s shoulder, as a smile graced his lips for the first time in a very long time; it was certainly the first real smile Harry had ever seen from him.
Motioning over to the vast window seat Snape withdrew a bottle of fire whiskey from a cabinet in the corner of the room, pouring two glasses as Harry took a seat. He felt they may need it for the forthcoming conversation.
After hours of discussing everything from what happened between Snape and Lily, to the true extent of what happened to Harry at the hands of the Dursley’s, to all that had happened since Harry had come to Hogwarts, they found they had somehow slipped into the early hours of the morning without either of them noticing. As the clock struck 2.30am however Snape happened to glance up, seeing the hand move into place. “Salazar, you should have been back in your dorm hours ago. I shall walk with you to the tower incase you encounter any other staff.”
“Erm, thanks but there's no need.” Harry confessed, a look of confusion spreading across Snape’s face as he stood and walked over to his bag. Pulling the invisibility cloak out of the satchel, he looked sheepish all of a sudden. “I’ll be okay.” he motioned to the cloak, lifting his arm up as it covered his hand which was now of course ‘missing’, in explanation.
“Well, Mr -“ Snape cut himself off before he said the word. “Well, Harry. This is a surprise, however I feel that may well come in handy from now on. If we are to truly carry on building this relationship I feel there may well be a lot of sneaking around done. Not that I would condone such behaviour in any other circumstance of course.”
“Of course.” Harry’s signature grin spreading across his face. “Good night.”
“Good night Harry, be sure to make your way straight to the tower now.” Snape instructed as Harry made his way towards the door. “Oh and Harry, I do believe we may need to have a discussion about you and Mr Malfoy.” he spoke, just as Harry was about to cover himself with the cloak, a knowing glint in his eyes; watching the blush spread across his sons cheeks as he ducked his head under the cloak and stepped out of the office.
A weight was lifted from Snapes shoulders for the first time in 15 years, a crushing sensation gone from his chest as he went to bed knowing all was now right.