|Review:||Violet Gryfindor says:|
This chapter has left me internally screaming at Snape to stop being such an idiot. The way you've written him here is brilliant because you show all of his flaws yet still make him sympathetic - he's pig-headed and misguided and not thinking with his head, but he's got good intentions in mind. It's a very difficult balance to maintain with a character, one that's integral to Snape's characterization.
This whole episode for him is a strange one - I wondered why he would actually believe Sirius, but his reaction toward James at the end make me think that all of Snape's hatred and jealousy is focused on James and James alone. It's interesting because Sirius equally takes part in tormenting Snape, but for Snape it wasn't about the abuse, it was about Lily. He would do anything for her, even if he's entirely incapable of speaking to her without being offensive. He's very cruel to her and his love is suffocating; he wants to protect her and have her all to himself. You take JKR's hints of Snape's selfish love and give us what feels like the "real story", straight out of canon. It's amazing how canon this story is, especially in this chapter.
There's a lot of other things I could mention that stood out to me, like the way you show Snape as more of a danger to himself than Remus was to him, or how subtly Sirius manipulated Snape. I also liked that you didn't actually show what happened between Remus and Snape, but instead we only hear Snape's confused rambling. The structure of his chapter reflected the chaotic scene by changing POVs and cutting the scenes at opportune moments. It enhanced the action and speed of the narrative, yet somehow you did it without breaking the flow. Great work with this chapter! I love how this story is developing! :D
Author's Response: I'm just going to cuddle this for a while, mmkay?
Seriously, though, if my Severus is an idiot... perfect. I tried so hard to make him flawed and to really push myself to the limit, to try to see him the way Lily would have when she made choices against him toward the end of her short life. At the same time, though--you nailed it--I wanted the readers to second-guess her hard turn against him. I wanted to cast his motives in a purer light, in the sense that she is his only light and reason to move forward and so he just does that.
It was hard for me to put myself in his head and figure out why he would succumb to Sirius, and in the end, the only thing I could think of was Lily. She's what I return to when I try to decide where his character should go next. I think you've pegged him correctly; he'll do anything to keep Lily's attention, even if it's just so she can argue back to him. I think he'd endure any amount of abuse from Sirius and James if he thought it would help him get Lily in the end. It's amazing how closed off in his own world he seems at this point, in terms of not being able to comprehend how she must actually see him. I would think it would be scary for her, too--how is she supposed to redeem herself in this friendship if her friend isn't her friend anymore?
I'm glad you liked the way I set up the scene and moved it along from Snape's perspective. I really wanted it to be a bizarre moment for Lily, when she comes to realize briefly that Snape's rambling is actually somewhat accurate. I think it would be in these moments, when she can see the depth of his passion for her, that she would be the most frightened, of him and of what is to come.
Thank you so much for this wonderful review, Susan! I'm trying to go in reverse this time, just for a change, so I'll get to responding to others of yours as soon as I can! :)