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0A415B by silver_bouncing_lobster

Format: One-shot
Chapters: 1
Word Count: 4,143
Status: COMPLETED

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Strong Violence

Genres: Drama
Characters: OC, Snape
Pairings:

First Published: 11/23/2004
Last Chapter: 11/23/2004
Last Updated: 07/30/2005

Summary:

COMPLETE. New part added to existing chapterSeverus recieves an unexpected visit from one of the most important people in his past. She brings with her a bundle of memories that the Potions Master has never been privy to, memories that would explain everything. Can he handle what her visit reveals?


Chapter 1: A Surprise Visit
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“Excuse me,” came a voice from down the hall.

Minerva McGonagall turned around and came face to face with the owner of the voice that had called to her. The woman was middle-aged with shoulder length dark brown hair, sprinkled with the faintest bit of gray. Her eyes were a delicate stormy blue accentuated by trendy black-rimmed glasses. The stranger was dressed in a sleek dark green turtle neck, black dress pants and black stiletto boots. All in all, she was quite attractive.

“May I help you?” the Transfiguration Professor asked politely.

“I’m looking for someone…” the stormy eyed woman began.

“Student or teacher?” Minerva questioned, leaning on her walking stick.

“Teacher…Severus Snape,” the woman finished, a small frown beginning to tug at the edges of her pale lips.

“He’s in his office. I’ll show you where it is,” Minerva said, turning around and continuing down the corridor.

The younger woman followed dutifully. As they descended into the lower portion of the school, she looked around at the solid gray stone. She shivered slightly as the pair stopped at a closed door. It was made of dark oak and had a rather mundane design carved into it. The Transfiguration Professor knocked and waited. Inside, the sound of papers rustling and a chair scraping against stone could be heard. Moments later a lock clicked and the door was pulled open about six inches.

“What is it?” the Potions Master snapped, annoyed at having been interrupted.

“You have a visitor,” Minerva answered, seemingly unfazed by his rudeness.

He opened the door wider to reveal the woman standing patiently behind her guide. His black eyes swept over her full form and a smile began to form on his thin lips. He stepped out of the room and suddenly wrapped his slender arms about her shoulders, pulling her into a hug.

“Leeara,” he breathed with a sigh.

“It’s so good to see you…what are you doing here?” he asked as he held her at arms length.

“What? I’m not allowed to come visit?” she asked with a playful laugh.

“Of course you are. Come in,” he said, gesturing towards the door.

“I’ll leave you two alone. I have some things to get done,” Minerva said and excused herself, smiling kindly at the woman.

As the elderly woman made her way in the opposite direction, Severus led his guest into his office. From there he led her through a door on the east wall and into a furnished sitting room. The fireplace, made of red brick, had a small fire burning comfortably in the hearth. The furniture was made of solid mahogany and was covered with forest green cushions. Leeara took in the cozy room and had to stifle a laugh as she looked at the man in front of her.

“What’s so funny?” he asked in his usual drawl, looking rather insulted.

“I just never imagined you to actually decorate little brother,” Leeara said with a quiet chuckle.

“Or to have that many guests whom would need impressing,” she added as she sat down on the plush couch next to the fireplace.

“Did you just come here to insult me?” he spat, his temper starting to rise.

“Oh calm down Severus honestly,” Leeara quipped with a shake of her head.

He glared at her and crossed his arms over his chest in defiance. A scowl crept onto his face as he continued to glare. Unfortunately, it didn’t have the same effect on her as it did on incompetent first years. His newly assumed position only made his guest laugh harder.

“Don’t give me that look,” Leeara stated rather firmly, all mirth gone from her voice.

“You have no right to tell me what to do,” he snarled in response, sounding much like a disgruntled teenager.

“For god sakes stop acting like a child, that is unless you wish to be treated like one,” the older woman threatened.

He let out a defeated grunt and sunk into the nearest chair. The scowl still remained on his angular features as he turned his dark gaze upon the auburn-haired woman.

“Now, if you’ll stop pouting like a spoiled three-year-old I’ll tell you why I’m here,” Leeara continued.

“Fine,” he muttered.

“I’m here because it took me this long to find you,” she said, her voice suddenly growing quiet.

“What do you mean?” Severus questioned, leaning towards her.

“After you graduated from Hogwarts, and Voldemort came into power, you…you stopped coming home,” she said, tears beginning to well up in her tempestuous eyes.

“I was so scared. For years I’ve been hoping that I’d find you,” she continued, letting the tears begin to fall.

“How did you find me?” he asked, reaching his hand out and placing it on top of hers.

“My neighbor’s son, Nicolas, is a first year and it gave a list of teachers in his letter,” Leeara explained.

“I see,” Severus said quietly.

“What happened?” she asked, her eyes begging for an answer.

“I…I…here,” he stammered and pulled up his sleeve to reveal his forearm, the faded imprint of the dark mark just visible in the firelight.

Leeara recoiled at the image. A look of terror swept over her gentle features as she looked upon her younger brother. The look in her eyes radiated a fear that he didn’t think was possible.

“How-how could you join that…that monster?” she gasped, inching away from him.

“Lee…I made a lot of mistakes. I didn’t want you to have to deal with how much I screwed up,” he said, his breathing becoming momentarily shallow.

“I left. I swear it. I no longer believe his lies,” he added, trying to reassure her.

“Do you have any idea what could happen if he succeeds?” she questioned, her emotions running rampant.

“He’ll kill everyone who opposes him…everyone who isn’t like him. It will be another Holocaust,” she murmured amidst deep sobs.

“And I can’t go through that again,” she cried.

“Again? What are you talking about?” Severus queried softly.

“I was six when the war ended,” Leeara sputtered.

“Severus…you betrayed me,” she breathed, meeting his dim gaze.

“I don’t understand,” he pleaded, genuine confusion in his tone.

In response, she pulled the right sleeve of her shirt up past her elbow, exposing her forearm. In faded black ink was written 05J7S98. She looked at it and shuddered in disgust. Severus looked at the numbers and letters and a sense of familiar questioning arose in the back of his mind.

“I used to ask you what that was when I was a child,” he whispered.

“And I always told you to stop asking so many questions,” she answered, turning her gaze upwards to meet her brother’s.

“Why didn’t you ever explain what it was?” he asked, a look of hurt in his eyes.

“Because I was scared…I didn’t want to relive the memories,” she declared with a small sniffle.

“Will you tell me now?” he asked, moving to sit next to her on the couch.

“Yes. It’s time you knew,” she answered as she took a steadying breath.

It was just after breakfast when a loud pounding came from the front door. Mother answered it because Father was away. It was a group of men with guns. They pushed Mother out of the way, tracking mud into the house with their big army boots.

“Search the basement,” one of the men barked as three others descended the stairs.

Two more thundered up to the attic. They sounded like a herd of wild beasts. The one who had given the order followed Mother into the kitchen.

“Where is the male of your house?” he demanded in German.

“He is not here,” Mother replied nervously.

Just then, the five other men joined us in the kitchen. I was sitting next to Grandmother by the stove. The little hairs on the back of my neck stood on end when I looked at them. They wore large coats with a strange symbol on the sleeve. The men shook their heads at the leader but pointed at us. I remember Mother getting a worried look in her eyes as she took my hand.

“Stand up!” one of them growled.

“Why?’ Grandmother asked, glaring at the man with her soft brown eyes.

“Don’t talk back bitch!” the leader snapped and pointed his gun at her heart.

He scared me. No one ever talked to Grandmother like that. She was the head of the house when Father was gone. She took a step towards him but he hit her. He hit her hard with the end on his gun. I wanted to cry out but Mother gave me a look that only dared me to speak. Grandmother took the blow in stride. She did not cry. I never saw her cry in all my years of knowing her.

“Mother, just do as they say,” my mother begged.

After that, we gathered some clothes and were marched out of our home at gunpoint. Our neighbors peered out of curtained windows at us as we were ushered into a small car. As we were being driven away, the leader lit a fat cigar and threw it carelessly through the front window. It landed on Mother’s piano, causing it to burst into flame. I remember tears running down our faces as we watched our home being destroyed. It wasn’t until much later that I understood what was going on.


“Who were they?’ Severus breathed, staring intently at his older sibling.

“The Gestapo. The Nazi police,” she answered, the words like acid on her tongue.

“Where was our father?” he inquired, his tone a mix of curiosity and disapproval.

“Fighting in the war. He joined an Allied regiment in France. He didn’t believe in Hitler,” Leeara responded.

“Oh. Where did they take you?” the dark-haired Potions Master queried.

“Auschwitz,” Lee answered, having to brush tears of hatred from her gray-blue eyes.

“That’s in…” Severus began, trying to recall what he knew of the Jewish repression during the forties.

“Austria,” his older sibling finished.

“God it was horrible,” she continued, trying to compose herself.

“You don’t have to tell me if it’s too hard Lee,” Severus whispered, trying to console his elder sister.

“No, no it wouldn’t be fair to you,” Leeara commented through a sob.

Leeara took a deep breath and slowly let it out, running her hands through her graying hair. Her stormy eyes locked with the dark, brooding ones of her baby brother as she continued to recount the beginning of the most frightening three years of her life.

We spent an interminable length of time in that car. After that, we were loaded like cattle onto a train. The three of us were squeezed into the very last available square foot of space in one of the rear cars. Screaming babies and toddlers, crying women and stony-faced men, surrounded us. There was no food or drink given out either. I remember that night as we hurtled noisily to our destination; the skies opened up and pounded the roof with sheets of rain, some of it seeping in through cracks to drip on our heads. I can’t recall how long we were on the train but it felt like an eternity. Finally, there was blessed silence. The train had stopped and the car had gone eerily silent. Suddenly the door was thrust open and two men dressed in similar garb to the men whom had taken us, ordered everyone to get out. After filing ou, the men were separated from the women and children. Luckily, Grandmother, Mother and I were not separated. By the time the large masses had been separated, more men, who I later learned were guards, had arrived to escort us to our barracks.

Our living quarters were despicable. We had one small light hanging in the center of the room. Our beds were small and uncomfortable. There were eight of us to a room. The loo was half a mile away and there was no privacy. The first few days I stayed glued to Mother’s hip. We were in a new place and being only 3 years old, I was ever fearful. I did not understand why we were there or what was going on outside the borders of our new ‘home’.


“You weren’t the only child there I assume,” Severus interrupted.

“No. Please don’t interrupt me,” Lee answered.

It must have been about a week before I found someone around my own age. His name was Fritz Mehlinger. He’d been in the camp for a month by the time we met. He was rather small and scrawny with a dirty face and unruly brown hair. The first thing I noticed about him though was that he possessed the most interesting eyes. His left eye was a deep green and the other was a light blue. It was he who initiated our first interaction. He’d caught me staring.

“What you lookin’ at?” he inquired in broken German.

“You’re eyes are funny,” I said truthfully.

“No they isn’t,” he replied defiantly.

“Ok,” I concluded rolling my eyes.

“I’m Leeara,” I introduced myself.

“I’m Fritz. I’m four and a half,” he boasted, puffing out his bony chest.

“Oh. I’m three,” I said, casting my gaze downwards.

“Wanna be my friend?” he asked seemingly out of the blue.

“Ok. I don’t got friends,” I said, a smile breaking out on my pale face.

From that day forward Fritz and I would be each other distraction to the world around us. We’d play hide and seek around the camp until one of the guards would start yelling at us and threatening us. I remember one such afternoon when the sun had slipped behind ominous clouds.

“Hey you two! Get away from there!” one of the men shouted waving his gun at us.

“Make us!” my friend cried.

Fritz grabbed my arm and pulled me behind a large bin with a giggle. He loved to test the patience of the guards. Usually they did not come after us. Something about this frightening man was different. He came charging after us, lumbering along. He caught up with us as we were scurrying away and he managed to clip Fritz across the face with his gun. With a glare, he returned to his post.

I dragged him back to my barracks and found a bit of clean sheet to wipe his face. He kept trying to avoid my gaze, wiping tears from his mismatched eyes as best he could.

“I told you he be mad,” I whispered in a motherly tone.

“I don’t want to play over there no more,” he answered softly.

“Me neither,” I confirmed.

Winter that year was brutal. Both Grandmother and I caught the flu. Fritz wasn’t allowed to visit me while I was sick. I remember that one night, in the very early hours of the morning, I heard one of the women in our barrack cough loudly and violently several times. When I awoke later on, I found that the room smelled rather disgusting. It turned out that the woman had contracted pneumonia and had died. No one had told the guards yet and so her body remained, stinking up the place. Despite my ill health I begged Mother to let me go outside and get some air. She wrapped me the blanket from my bed as well as hers and took me just outside the door to get some slightly cleaner air into my lungs.

“When can I play with Fritz?” I questioned through a phlegm-filled hack.

“When you’re better,” she answered before ushering me back inside.

I was ill most of the winter. With lack of food and sufficient warmth, my body took a long time to recover. I finally did two weeks into spring. I was so excited that I sprinted over to Fritz’s barracks and knocked loudly on the door. The door opened and I saw the bizarre gaze of my one and only friend.

“I can play! Come on!” I squealed, grabbing his arm.

“Mama! I’m playing with Lee,” he called over his shoulder.

In no time we were back at our old games. This time it wasn’t guards we were dodging, but the teacher the people, the Nazis, had brought in to keep track of the children. It was required that all children old enough to walk attend but we constantly ran off.

“Mehlinger! Brandt! Come back here before I beat you!” was often what resounded behind us as we took to flight.


“Who would have guessed you’d be the kind to skip classes,” her brother commented.

“Sorry. Do continue,” he prompted.

“In a minute,” Lee responded, wiping her eyes and taking several deep breathes.

Without asking, Severus summoned a tall glass of water for her and a glass of firewhiskey for himself. She took the water gratefully and gulped down half the glass. She put it down on the table and leaned back, looking at her younger brother.

“What?” she asked abruptly.

“Did…did any of them ever…hurt you?” he inquired, seeming very embarrassed.

“As in rape? No. And no, they didn’t hurt Mother either if that’s what you’re thinking,” she answered.

“Thank god,” he breathed.

“Are you ready for more?” Leeara queried.

“If you are,” Severus confirmed.

A month after the teacher arrived, my fourth birthday arrived. I was sitting outside of our barracks when Fritz scurried up to me and tossed a hastily wrapped bundle in my lap.

“Hurry up,” he urged, his eyes pleading with me to open it.

“What is it?” I asked curiously.

“Just open it,” he protested.

I unwrapped what my best mate had thrust at me to find it a small package of food. I looked up at him in awe. Given our present situation it was the best gift he could have given me. Awkwardly I jumped up and tossed my arms around him and squeezed him as hard as I could.

“You gotta keep it a secret ok,” he ordered, making me promise.

The rest of the day went by as usual, skipping out on the teacher and running about the compound. Life had pretty much fallen into a routine and for two young kids who were naïve and ignorant to the world around them, it seemed pretty ok.

Life rolled on in this manner until the second winter. Grandmother had never quite fully recovered from her previously illness. She was weak and needed help walking and her already gaunt features were more pronounced now. You could clearly see the bones in her hands and arms. She looked like nothing more than a bag of bones. What was worse, the men had made her cut her hair into a boy’s cut. Mother just escaped that sort of humiliation and my hair wasn’t long enough to do anything with. Every night that second winter I prayed that Grandmother would get better and that soon we would leave. This last part always left me conflicted. While the camp wasn’t a pleasant place to be, I would not have met Fritz otherwise and I did quite enjoy his company. As the weather began to get better and the temperature rose, the days seemed to drag on. I had lost all sense of time, in days, months and years. All I knew was that there were two times, when the sun was out and when it went dark. These two principles are what governed my remaining time in the camp. I did not remember my fifth birthday, nor did Mother or Fritz. Somehow, it didn’t seem to matter. All that did was surviving until the sun rose again. During that time, the people I had grown accustomed to seeing around had dwindled; all presumed dead in one manner or another. New faces had come in during winter but many did not make it through. I was just thankful that I still had Mother, Grandmother and Fritz. Without them, my world would crumble.

And my world did crumble. Sometime around the third year at the camp, Grandmother did something she hadn’t done since we had been taken. She stood up to the guards, to the Nazis. Fritz and I had been wandering about as usual when a nasty looking man came up to us and started yelling at us that he was going to shoot us if we didn’t get back to the teacher. Grandmother had overheard and disapproved of the foul language he had intertwined in his shouting.

“You leave those children alone,” she spat.

“How dare you bitch!” he growled and drew his gun.

It felt like déjà vu all over again. The same words, the same raised weapon. The only difference was the outcome. Instead of striking her with the butt as the other officer had done ages ago, this man pointed it straight at her chest and fired, sending her crumpling to the ground. He spat on her bleeding body before giving it a swift kick. He turned and stormed off. I collapsed then, tears flooding out of my eyes. Fritz did his best to console me but it wasn’t of any use. I pulled from his grasp and ran to our barrack and flung myself into Mother’s arms.

“Mama! Mama! He shot her! She’s dead!” I wailed into her barely covered chest.

“Who baby?” she breathed, rocking me gently.

“Grandmother,” I sobbed.

Soon, Mother’s wails joined my own in a song of mourning. When we returned to the spot where she had fallen, her body was gone. Mother had never had a chance to say goodbye. That was the most devastating moment in my young life. Shortly after that, I was told six months, the camp was liberated. One of the men in the regiment saw me and fell to his knees and cried. I didn’t recognize him at first but after he called my name, I knew it was Father. He had come and he had saved us. Mother and I rushed to his open arms and he carried me out of that hell, all the while tears falling from his worn gray eyes.


“What of your friend Fritz?” Severus asked as he rubbed her back.

“I heard from him years later when I was 18,” she answered, trying to control her weeping.

“He said he still thought about me and that he would like to see me,” she continued, a smile on her face.

“But let me finish ok,” she said, looking at her younger relative, surprised to see tears in his eyes.

“Alight,” he consented softly.

“I’m sure you’re wondering why Mother and Father never raised you,” she murmured.

“Yes,” he responded shortly.

Fourteen years after the whole ordeal, we’d moved to England and Mother was pregnant, with you. She hadn’t had a really difficult pregnancy, not until the delivery. She died after giving birth to you. She gave all she had to bring you into the world. But Father, having been separated from his family and seeing what hell we went through was devastated. He said he couldn’t love a child that took the only woman he loved away from him. He told me that I could care for you or give you up for adoption. It made no difference to him.

“That bastard!” Severus growled angrily.

“You have a right to be mad at him,” Lee commented.

“I was for years. In fact, I still am,” she finished.

“Again, what of Fritz?” Severus inquired, seeming extraordinarily interested in his sister’s playmate.

“Well we met and we kept in touch over the years. We’ve been living together for the past decade but neither of us sees why marriage is necessary. We just want to be together,” she finished looking at him expectantly.

“I do hope to meet him,” Severus stated simply.

“And he’s been dying to meet you too,” his elder sister assured him with a gentle smile.

“Just don’t ever show him that mark,” she said, her tone and face becoming deadly serious.

“Is he a wizard?” her brother questioned.

“No but he knows about magic and about what He did and is doing,” she spat, quickly looking apologetically at Severus.

“I see. I promise,” he answered and stood up.

Leeara stood as well and embraced the man in front of her in the strongest bear hug she could muster. He was taken slightly by surprise but soon returned the sentiment with ease. It had nearly killed him to estrange himself from her but ti felt wonderful to see her again. He was still processing all of what she had told him of her life in the middle of a psychopath’s war. He vowed then and there to keep in touch and do all he could to ensure that Voldemort did not rise again. He had a reason to succeed and he would not fail. Not for her, not for his grandmother.

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