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Live With Myself by SilverMoonFairy

Format: One-shot
Chapters: 1
Word Count: 1,013

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Contains profanity, Mild violence, Sensitive topic/issue/theme

Genres: Horror/Dark, Angst, AU
Characters: Dumbledore, Snape
Pairings: Snape/Lily

First Published: 10/01/2016
Last Chapter: 10/01/2016
Last Updated: 10/01/2016

Part Two of the Lily Collection

Severus tries to deal with Lily's death.

For Rumpelstiltskin's Companion Piece Challenge
Beta'd by dreamgazer220

Chapter 1: Live With Myself

Author's Note: This collection is going to be considered an AU as I took some liberties with established canon scenes. This collection is inspired by the song Lucy by Skillet. (You should listen!) I do not own anything, all hail JK Rowling, mother of the HP universe!

October, 1981 - Hogwarts Headmaster's Office

A scream ripped through the night air, caught and whisked away on the wind. The sound echoed across the grounds, making both teacher and student alike turn fearful and curious faces toward their windows. The walls seemed to shake with the anguish buried in the cry.

Severus dropped to his knees on the edge of the tall window, hands gripping the stone frame on either side of him. Another scream tore from his throat and lightning seemed to flash just to punctuate his pain. He could still feel the weight of her lifeless body in his arms. He could still see the vacant look in her beautiful green eyes.

His body trembled all over. He had hurt one love by embracing another. Then he betrayed that love to protect the other. Now he had nothing.

He drew his wand to cast his Patronus. The beautiful and majestic doe erupted from the tip, galloping into the sky, lighting up the dark clouds. It came back down, weaving between the towers of the school. The sight calmed him as much as her death devastated him. The churning in the heavens soon quieted.

Could he cry now? he wondered. Severus had fought the urge so often in his life, he sometimes wondered if he simply lacked the ability now. He watched as the doe finally came to a rest on the grounds directly below him. The glowing creature looked up at him before disappearing.

He nodded as if understanding an unspoken message. He pulled himself to his feet, eyes never leaving the spot where the doe had stood. Looking at him. As if she were calling to him.

Severus gripped the window frame tighter, his knuckles white. His heart beat wildly in his chest. He took a deep breath and closed his eyes. The wind stopped. His heart slowed. A calm settled over him and he stepped forward.

"Severus!" A strong arm wrapped around his middle. For a moment, two men teetered on the edge of death. "You fool! What do you think you're doing?"

It was the Headmaster. The man he had begged to keep Lily safe. The man he had discarded his second love for.

"Let me go!" Severus begged, pulling from Dumbledore's grip. "I have nothing left! Don't you understand? Nothing!"

The old man proved stronger than he looked and with one firm heave, sent Severus sprawling backwards onto the stone floor. The window was closed and latched before he could recover. Severus glared up at the headmaster. The old man calmly turned to face the young man, folding his hands and looking at him through his half-moon spectacles.

"If the best idea you have to honor Lily's memory is to fling yourself from a window, then you are not the man I have come to know," Dumbledore said firmly, his voice voice of its normal airiness, the sparkle in his eye missing. "You can still be a light in this world, Severus."

"There is no light left in the world," he hissed, pulling himself to his feet.

"I thought you were a braver man than that," the headmaster said somberly. He walked forward, pausing when he was next to Severus and pointing at the window. "That is a coward's way. A fool's choice."

His lip curled. "Then tell me, old man," he growled. "What am I supposed to do? How am I supposed to live with myself if I've failed her?" His voice broke and he couldn't be bothered to care. Dumbledore had seen him at his weakest before. This was just a new low.

The headmaster had reached his desk and he sat down in his throne-like chair. He regarded Severus thoughtfully. "You can help me protect her son."

"Her son?" he spat. "The Dark Lord is gone- he should be safe enough." Safer than his mother had been. Severus' heart clenched. Those vacant eyes...

"The Dark Lord will return," Dumbledore assured him. "When he does, that boy will be in graver danger than he was tonight." He paused, staring at Severus. The twinkle had returned. "He has her eyes, Severus. Exactly her eyes."

Vacant eyes. Dead eyes. Severus tried to imagine them the way they should be- bright and sparkling with life, but every memory was tainted with dead eyes. His face contorted. His heart clenched. Lily was dead.

"He is being sent to live with Lily's sister."

"Petunia!" Snape roared. "That wretch-"

"Is the only family he has," Dumbledore said softly.

"I could raise the boy better!"

The headmaster raised his heavy eyebrows. "I never thought you to be the paternal type. Not to a child that wasn't yours."

Severus flushed. "I- Anyone would be better suited to raise the child," he insisted. He didn't think he actually could raise James Potter's son.

Dumbledore chuckled. "Calm down. The child will stay with his aunt. Given your unique position, it would not look good if you were to take him in. And with Voldemort's followers still on the loose, you would both be in grave danger."

He couldn't feel relief. He had nothing but hatred for Petunia Evans. He couldn't imagine the life Lily's son would lead. Exactly her eyes.

"I'll do it," he said softly. He stared at the old man, looking every bit an aging king. "I will help protect him. But tell no one, Dumbledore. Swear to me!"

The headmaster looked amused. "Keep the best of you a secret from the world?" His eyes twinkled. He sighed. "I give you my word, Severus."

Nodding, he finally sat down in one of the wing-backed chairs on the opposite side of Dumbleore's desk. He had a new purpose now. Protect Lily's son. But even if he had a reason to live... How do I live with myself?