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Snape's Journal

June15th, 1993:

Lily sleeps still in our bed, her breathing deep and even, but I am for some reason wide awake and unable to let sleep claim me. So I decidde to do as I normally do when I am unable to sleep, I write until I nod off over my parchment. I find that writing my thoughts down not only keeps them organized, but also lets my mind recall things that might be bothering me and hindering my rest. Harry says I just enjoy having a pen in my hand, whether it's correcting student essays or writing in my journal. "You're a professor, Dad. Your pen is your best friend," he joked once. Now, he may be right, since my most loyal and true friend and defender has crossed the rainbow bridge to the Other Side. That may seem strange, that I put a dog above my beloved wife, who was also my best friend, but in fifth year, Lily did something that I nearly could not forgive, and because of it I almost made the greatest mistake of my life.

I paused, my quill suspended in mid-air, as I recall the events of that dreadful afternoon. My desk is right in front of a window, which faces the street and I look down at it, all is still, for it is three AM. I briefly remember another day, I was here grading midterms, Harry was eight, playing on the lawn with Hermione, who lives down the road. They were playing badminton, and Harry hit it a little too hard with the racquet, the shuttlecock flew across the street, where some other boys were gathered.

One of them picked up the shuttlecock, and looked back at Harry, who went over to retrieve it. Harry told me afterwards he'd asked, "This yours, creep? Want it back?" When Harry said yes, he'd laughed and said, "Too bad. Finders keepers." Then he knocked my son down, just for spite. Next thing you know, there was an old-fashioned brawl, and poor Harry, who'd gotten his glasses knocked off, was getting the worst of it.

I hadn't noticed anything then, I was too busy correcting exams, but I looked up when I heard Hermione yelling, "Mr. Snape! Mr. Snape! Come quick! They're beating up Harry!"

I shot up from my desk so fast I slammed my hand on the edge of it. Then I heard Gabriel barking and something heavy hitting the front door.

"No, Gabe! Come back!" Hermione's voice echoed shrilly through the front hall.

I turned back to the window just in time to see a furry red-gold streak dart across the lawn and into the street.

Swearing under my breath, I bolted down the stairs. No way was I going to let my son get beaten and bullied the way I had been as a child. "Stay here, Hermione," I ordered as I passed her.

She looked stricken. "Hurry, Mr. Snape!"

I pushed the door open and ran out onto the lawn.

Across the street, the five boys who had been beating Harry suddenly scattered as Gabriel came among them. My sixpence runt of the litter dog was now a giant, eighty-five pounds of sinew and steel, and lightning quick on his feet. Now a collie won't attack a person unless he is defending his master from a threat, and most collies won't do more than bare their teeth and snarl. But Gabriel recognized that Harry was hurt and in pain and he wouldn't tolerate that. He started nipping their ankles and the backs of their calves, trying to herd them away from Harry.

I strode across the street, calling angrily, "Hey! What are you lot up to? Leave my son alone, you little sodding bastards!"

I was furious and not minded to watch my mouth.

Some of them, mostly the ones that Gabe was driving like sheep, looked about and saw me. They went pale and took off, not wanting to face me and Gabriel together. Of course, the stupid little sod who was pounding on Harry didn't look up and see me or my collie till it was too late. Gabriel nipped him right on the arse, as it was sticking out while he was bent over slamming my poor son's head into the ground.

He yelled and jerked up, "Oww! What the bloody hell?"

Then my hand closed on the back of his shirt and I picked him up and snarled in his face, "Listen, you rotten little bounder! Touch my son again and I'll break all your fingers. Got me?"

He started sniveling and whinging, but I shook him once and snapped, "I caught you in the act, now stop being a sniveling coward and get your arse home where it belongs! Matter of fact, I'll take you there myself, let your parents know what you've been up to." I longed, very much, to haul the brat over my knee and give him a good spanking. But I didn't want a lawsuit on my head for assaulting a minor and had to hope his parents would punish him appropriately.

Gabriel barked angrily, then started licking Harry's face. He was still lying on the ground, sniffling. He would never cry in front of strangers. At home, he might bawl on my shoulder, but never in public. He was a tough little scrap. "You all right?" I asked my son.

Harry climbed shakily to his feet, his hand resting on Gabriel's back. He looked like he'd been through the wars, all over blood and dirt and dog slobber, his lenses cracked. "Yeah, Dad."

"Go home. I'll be back in a few minutes after I settle with this little scoundrel," I told him quietly.

He started back across the street, escorted by our dog.

Then I took the bully and brought him to his home, where I angrily informed his mother what her little darling had been up to. The kid fought me the entire way, which told me that he would probably get the thrashing of his life from his dear old dad once he got home. I didn't care, however. Sure enough, she promised me that young Barty would get a good walloping and apologized for her son's behavior. They lived further down the street, closer to the railway.

I returned home, and fixed up Harry with some potions and asked him what happened. He told me all about the badminton game and the shuttle, then he asked, "Dad, why did they just . . .go after me like that? All I did was ask for my shuttle back."

"Sometimes, Harry , bullies are spoiling for a fight, and they like hurting those that are smaller or younger than them. It makes them feel good about themselves, they like to push people around." I told him. Little did he know I was speaking from experience. An experience that I had learned the hard way, at the hands of his father and friends.

"That's stupid!" Hermione put in. "But then, most boys are stupid. Err . . .except you, Harry." She leaned down to pet Gabriel. "You were such a good dog, Gabe! You saved Harry, didn't you, you beautiful thing!"

Gabriel, who was sitting at Harry's feet, promptly stood up and licked her.

"You're a real hero, old pal," I said, and then I conjured a huge juicy steak bone for him as a reward.

He gnawed on it happily.

"You acted very responsibly, Hermione, by calling me instead of trying to handle things yourself," I praised the Muggleborn witch who had just moved down the street from us a month ago. She was bright, inquisitive, a bit of a know-it-all, but overall a nice well-mannered child. We had met when Gabriel had wandered over to say hello, a habit I'd never been able to break him of.

"My mum always told me that if I saw somebody getting beaten up, and there were more than two attacking one, to call for a grown-up."

"Your mother was correct. Harry, next time anything like that happens, you try and walk away, or come to me. There's no shame in walking away from an unfair fight."

"Okay, Dad. I'll remember." He rubbed Gaby behind the ears. "You're a good dog, Gabe. A real rescue dog."

He was, though that hadn't been the first time Gabriel had defended his master from harm.

The other incident I'm referring to happened in Lily's and my fifth year . . .

June 20th, 1976:

Hogwarts School:

This year was our OWL year and Lily and I had been studying all year long for the exams, and I had spent last night reviewing and practically re-reading my Defense Against the Dark Arts text and practicing all the spells I knew over and over till my head felt like it was going to explode and my wand hand fall off. But I was determined to do well on my exams, since high OWL scores ensured you a choice of career, and I badly wanted to be an apothecary or one of the professors who taught at the Academy of Potioneers. But in order to get those jobs I had to be near perfect on my OWLS. My Potions OWLS was a piece of cake, nothing we had to brew on the syllabus even came close to the advanced potions I had been studying with Slughorn and Mum last year, and we had to brew one original draft and I used the Water Walking brew I'd invented last year. The proctor was so impressed he asked me for the formula and told me to skip the written portion of the exam that he could tell I already knew all the information it covered.

I then had an extra two hours to study for Charms. I was glad for I was not as good in that subject, that was Lily's area, and she was as brilliant at Charms as I was at Potions. We had two OWLS per day this whole week. Today OWL's had been Transfiguration, the written part, and Defense Against the Dark Arts, also the written portion. The practical parts would be given tomorrow. I had thought I did well on both exams, I had managed to recall all the answers to the questions and wrote legible essays for each. I finished the exam before time was called as well.

Even so, I wished to go over the answers again and took my copy of the test questions with me as I left. It was a beautiful sunny day out and I decided to remain outside in the sunshine for once and read over my answers in private. I knew certain students thought I was nothing but a skinny greasy bookworm who was pale as a vampire and loved dark dungeons, but that impression wasn't entirely true. I did love brewing and since the potions lab was in the dungeons, spent a large part of my free time there, but I would have spent at least part of it outside in the fresh air harvesting herbs if not for the constant persecution by the Marauders.

As Voldemort rose in power, ill feelings were cultivated towards Slytherin House, and the Marauders were at the forefront of the unrest. Their "the only good Slytherin is a hexed one" philosophy had been adopted by a lot of the Gryffindors and even Ravenclaw and Huffle puff started looking at us suspiciously. Lately they were picking on me something awful, though once I had heard Black claim that they always pranked me because I asked for it following them around, which was utter rubbish.

Why in Merlin's name would I want to follow the Marauders around? I tried to avoid them as much as possible, because I didn't want points taken off my House nor to get hexed to Kingdom come. Now they didn't duel me one on one anymore, now they attacked three on one, with Pettigrew the cowardly pillock hexing me from behind. Lupin usually didn't participate in the Beat Down Snape campaign, lucky for me. He just watched on occasion and I never could figure out if he felt sorry for me or hated me like the others did.

In any case, that day I went and found a cozy little spot halfway inbetween the lake and Hagrid's hut. I sat down with my back to a young oak tree and began reviewing my answers. It was peaceful and the sun felt good on my head. I loosened my tie and undid the top button on my shirt and opened my robe. The school uniform was definitely not made for the muggy June heat.

I had my wand resting near my hand, just in case, while I perused the test questions. I wondered where Lily was, she had promised to meet me after the exam was done, but I hadn't seen her as I exited and I hadn't lingered because the Marauders were nearby. I thought about whistling for my collie, but figured he might be in Hagrid's hut, dozing away the heat, as was his wont. I should have clipped him down so he wouldn't suffer so in the heat, but had been too busy studying to do more than pet and feed him this past week. I felt guilty for neglecting him, but I would make it up to him by playing with him and grooming him tomorrow.

My thoughts were focused on my exam and my dog and so I didn't see Black and Potter approach until James said, "All right, Snivellus?"

I sprang to my feet, wand in hand, knowing that to hesitate meant another beating. But I was a shade too slow.

Potter's Disarming Charm knocked my wand away and then Black hit me with an Impedimenta Curse, making me fall hard to the ground like a frozen block of wood. Shit! Shit, Snape! You stupid fool! You should have kept an eye out, instead of assuming you were safe.

Potter and Black were jeering at me now. "Look at Snivelly, James!" Black chortled. "Lying there all still, like a rotting log. And we all know what people do with rotting logs, right?"

"They cut them down," answered Potter.

"Or fart and pee on them," giggled Pettigrew, the sick little bollocks.

I was frozen and helpless and could do nothing except watch as Pettigrew, urged on by the other two, presented his arse to me and blew off in my face.

I gagged and choked, the stench was so bad.

Potter and Black hooted.

"That's it, Wormtail! Give the slimy snake a taste of his own medicine."

"How'd you do on the exam, Snivelly?" sneered Potter.

"I saw his nose touching the parchment, there will be great greaseballs all over it and the proctor won't be able to read it." Black sniggered. "Next time you wash your hair, Snivvy, use some shampoo."

"Filthy greasy bugger," Wormtail giggled. "You smell like a swamp." To my horror, I saw him lift his robe and unbutton his trousers.

No! Oh, no! He wouldn't dare, that little snotrag! He wouldn't . . .!

He would. Two seconds later I felt something wet and warm spatter my legs as the puny-arsed dick peed on me. I wanted to die. I wanted to hex the little shit's pecker off. I struggled with all my might against the jinx that held me powerless. I spat and used just about every foul swear word I had ever heard of from my father and from others at school.

"Wash out your mouth, Snape!" shouted Potter. "Scourgify!"

That was a Cleaning Charm, meant to wash dishes and floors, and as my mouth filled with pink soap bubbles I gasped and choked, nearly unable to breathe. The jinx wore off and I managed to crawl towards my wand and grab it. I fired off a hex I had learned from an older Slytherin, a Cutting Curse, and had the satisfaction of catching Potter right across his pretty face.

A neat bloody slash opened up across his cheek and he yelped like a mangy cur. There! How do you like it?

"You bloody waste of breath!" Black screamed and then he cast a spell that we had just learned in Defense, a silent one called Levicorpus!

Next thing I knew, I was dangling by my ankle upside down. Our professor had explained that while the spell wasn't harmful, it did take an opponent by surprise and humiliate him, it was useful in subduing criminals, since you could bind them while they were hanging in midair. My robes dropped over my head and I struggled to push them off so I could see to hex them and to perform the countercharm Libracorpus.

I was still spitting out soap and gagging, and my head was throbbing, I had hit the ground pretty hard with the Impedimenta Jinx, and was only now just realizing that fact.

I heard others start chanting and giggling and Potter call, "Snivellus, don't you wash your pants, you greasy git!"

God, oh, God! I have to get down! I pursed my lips and whistled loudly, trying to summon Gabriel.

"And look, he's wet himself!" Pettigrew howled.

More laughter followed and I felt myself redden. There would be no way to ever live this down. I would be the butt of every dirty joke from now till I finished school.

"Leave him ALONE!"

I knew that voice and at first my heart thrilled to hear it.

Lily had come.

A split second later I feel shame flood me, so great that it hurt. That she should see me like this, exposed and helpless was almost more than I could bear. Lately I had started developing feelings for her that were more than mere friendship, much more, and she knew it. We had kissed once, in a deserted corridor, last week. I had felt as if I'd died and gone to heaven. Now I wished I had. I fought furiously to free myself, but only ended up causing myself to revolve in midair.

"Leave him alone, Potter, you bloody bully!" Lily was snarling. "What's he ever done to you?"

"It's more the fact that he exists, you see," drawled the Gryffindor Chaser. "He's nothing but pondscum, Evans. Why don't you leave him and go out with me? I'm your Housemate and a damn sight better looking than him, the ugly git!"

"I'd rather date the squid than you, Potter, you arrogant bunghole!"

"Now Evans, is that nice?' chided Black. "What can Snivellus give you that James can't?"

"Fleas?" Peter answered and everyone laughed uproariously.

Except Lily. "Oh, that was so funny . . .I forgot to laugh! Why don't you grow up, you stupid berks?"

"We will if you'll quit hanging around the greasy potions prodigy," Potter said.

Lily drew her wand. "Cancel the spell, Potter!"

"Evans, don't make me hex you."

"Kiss my arse, Potter!"

"Love to, babe!" he leered.

"You're a riot, Potter. Let him down!"

"Go out with me, Lily. If you say yes, I swear I'll never lay a wand on Snivelly here again."

There was silence for several moments. I felt the hairs on the back of my neck prickle. Don't do it, Lily! Don't! I wanted to howl, but my tongue wouldn't work right.

"Do you promise?" Lily asked, very quietly.

"On my honor, Evans. Say you'll be my girl and I'll leave the grease spot alone. Just for you, Evans."

"No hexes, no sneak attacks, no nothing," she bargained.

I felt deathly ill. "Lily, stop!" I tried to yell, but my robes muffled my voice and what I said came out garbled.

"Agreed. Your turn."

I finally managed to get the robes off my face. "Lily, don't! Don't do it!"

She looked at me and I could see the dreadful agony in her eyes. Then she turned away.

"Okay, Potter. I'll go out with you. Now let him down."

"Your wish is my command, sweet one," Potter grinned at me triumphantly.

I was suddenly right side up again and set on the ground. "Lily, what have you done?"

"Dumped your sorry arse," Black smirked.

"I'm sorry, Sev," Lily mouthed to me, then she took Potter's arm and walked off towards the castle.

I made as if to go after her, I was sure I could persuade her to change her mind, I wasn't worth sacrificing her happiness for.

Instead I found myself yanked into the air again. "Hey!" I screamed. "You swore you wouldn't hex me!"

"James promised that one," Black sniggered. "I never promised you anything, Snivvy. "

It was true, he hadn't. On occasion, Black could be clever and sneaky, like his Slytherin relatives. I cursed him under my breath and concentrated.

"Who wants to see me take off Snivvy's pants?"

There were more cheers and hoots at that suggestion. I ignored them.

Libracorpus! Libracorpus! Damn it all, why isn't it working? I wondered frantically. I whistled again.

"Trying to imitate a bird, Snivellus?" chortled Pettigrew.

I really hated that little coward.

Then I heard a low snarl.

And some deep barking.

Gabriel had come at last to my whistle. And if I was hearing things right, he had brought Fang with him.

Several jeering kids scattered at the dogs' arrival and I heard Pettigrew yelp and screech, "Ahh-owww! He bit me on the arse! Help! Help! Sirius!"

I grinned to myself. Good boy, Gabe! Bite 'em good and hard! Then I refocused my mind. I knew what I had done wrong now. I had not pronounced the incantation correctly in my head. Liberacorpus!

In a flash I was upright on the ground again, and my wand was ready to hex the Marauders to the dark side of the moon.

It turned out that wasn't necessary.

Fang had Sirius pinned on the ground, and was drooling all over him.

Gabriel had chased Pettigrew halfway back to the castle, nipping and biting him on the bottom and the ankles, like a collie would do to reluctant sheep.

I didn't bother to hide my grin. Then I started to laugh. "Aww, Black! Looks like you're the dog's bollocks, eh? He really has a thing for you. Don't you feel special?"

Sirius was sputtering and gasping. "Snape . . ..get this big mutt off me! Can't breathe!"

"Good. The sooner you belt up, Black, the sooner I'll be happy. Kiss him, Fang!" I gave the big boarhound a hand signal and he started to slobber and lick Black all over. I walked away, laughing my head off. Hagrid would come by . . .eventually, and call Fang off. But in the meantime, Black was Fang's current object of affection and I had seen what he did to his favorite chew toys.

"Snape . . .don't leave me here! Sna-a-a-pe, get him off me!" Black was howling. "Moony, Prongs! Anybody . . .help!"

I kept walking. Black wasn't so brave now, when the shoe was on the other foot.

I found that Gabriel had treed Pettigrew, and torn the seat from his trousers while he was at it. The little rat was begging and crying when I saw him. "P-please, Snape . . .call him off! P-please!"

"Why?" I asked coldly. "Do you forget, you pathetic arsewipe, that you bloody peed on me?"

His eyes bulged. "I'm sorry! It was a joke! Please, call him off! I'm afraid of large dogs!" He started crying hard.

"Deal with it. Gabe, watch him!" I made him stay beneath the tree, ignoring the rat's sobbing. That would teach him to pee on me!

But the one I really needed to speak with was Lily. Lily, who had gone off with that git Potter.

It was evening when I finally found her, down by the lake, I had gone there after calling Gabe off finally and giving him some dinner. I was too sick at heart to eat anything. I had gone there because Gabe had insisted I come with him, dragging me part way by my sleeve.

He frisked up to Lily and licked her as she sat beside the lake, throwing stones into the water. "Hey, Gabe. I missed you," she stroked his elegant head and he sighed happily. That was something my dog and I had in common, we both loved Lily's touch.

I swallowed hard, trying to contain my anger and walked up to her. "Lily. I've been looking for you."

"Sev!" she said, and turned to stare at me. "I thought . . ..after what happened . . .you wouldn't want to speak with me."

"Well, I do. Why did you do that, Lily?" I demanded.

"What else could I do, Sev? I'm so sick of them always picking on us . . .you especially."

"So you agree to go out with that . . ..that swinging dick Potter to protect me?" I half-shouted. "Merlin's arse, Lily! Do I look like I'm five? You're not my mother!"

"No, I'm your friend!" she shouted back. "And I lo—care about you very much! I hate it when they start with you and I thought if I made Potter promise to leave you alone, they'd back off for awhile! I was trying to help you, can't you see that?"

"Sacrificing yourself isn't helping me, Lil!" I argued. "You never should have promised that! I'm not worth it."

"You are!"

"No! Do you know how this looks now? The whole school thinks I'm incapable of protecting myself! I look like a . . .pansy-arse!"

"Better that than getting hexed every other day! I did it for you, Severus Snape! Now just shut up and say thank you!" She dashed away tears.

"No." I shook my head. "I can't thank you for ruining your life. Tell Potter to go to hell and walk away."

"No. I meant what I said. I might not have a pureblood ancestry like you, Severus Tobias Snape, but I keep my promises. If I go back on my word, he'll go back on his."

"Lily, please . . ."

"Don't ask me again, Severus."

"Why do you have to be so stubborn, Evans?"

"Why do you have to be so ungrateful, Snape?"

"Ungrateful!" I exploded. "I never asked for you to interfere!"

"Oh, and was I supposed to stand there and watch them torment you?"

"That would have been better than what you did!"

"Why? Because you had your arse saved by a girl? Is that what's bothering you?"

"No!" That was some of what was irritating me, but I wasn't about to admit it. "What's bothering me is that you've chained yourself to that damn arsehole because of me!"

"What's done is done," she said wearily. "Just accept it, Severus."

But I couldn't. I couldn't stand the fact that she had agreed to allow Potter to . . .claim her because she wanted to help me. I couldn't bear the thought of Potter putting his smarmy hands and lips all over her.

"You should have left me there." I muttered.

She glared at me. "What sort of friend would I be then?"

"The free kind."

"Damn you, Sev!" she snapped, and then she slapped me across the face.

Gabriel barked in protest.

I said nothing, merely turned and walked away. Gabriel rose and followed, clearly upset and confused that the two people he loved were quarreling.

"Severus! I'm sorry!" Lily called. "Come back!"

I had to force myself to continue. I was sorry too. Sorry that she had given up so much for me, who didn't deserve it. I was sorry as well that our friendship had to end. And it was all because I didn't have the guts to learn how to defend myself properly. I had allowed myself to become a victim. Allowed myself to be the Marauders punching bag. But no longer. I knew what I had to do. That night I went to speak with certain older Slytherins who were known to be strong in certain types of magic.

Apparently they had been watching me for awhile and waiting for me to seek them out. They gave me a book to study and told me that I should learn all the spells in it, and that way I wouldn't shame myself and my House any longer by letting Gryffindors humiliate me. I took it and muttered a brief thank you. Lily had been right. I was sick and tired of being tormented. And sick and tired of being too weak to help myself, and causing the girl I loved to make a deal with preening Potter.

I clutched the Book of Night to my chest and hid it under my pillow. There would be time enough to learn its contents tomorrow. I curled up in my bed, Gabriel lying across the foot, and thought that this was possibly the worst day of my entire life.

So there you have it, the beginning of the reason why Lily chose James in this universe. I think it makes more sense this way than what she did in the books. Thanks everyone for reading!
 

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