As Long As She Lives Rating: PG
Diana DeRiggs

For those of you who have not yet read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, there are SPOILERS for that book in this tale. So, go read it! However, the thoughts mulled for this story were ruminated long before the publication release of the final book of the Potter series. I just added in details from the book. Of course, this story is told by Severus Snape.

What could I say to the headmaster? That I deliberately told the Dark Lord about Calista Trelawny's prophecy because I was hoping that he would murder Lily's husband and son? I would have kept it from him were it not for Lily!

She'd made a mistake marrying James Potter! He fancies her but doesn't think of her as more than a desirable trophy.

The only man who loves her — truly and forever — is currently on his knees before Albus Dumbledore on a windy hill in the darkness, crying for help!

I didn't mean to bring her to the Dark Lord's attention. I meant to rid her of Potter!

I beg the headmaster's help, but he spurns me. He sees through my request. And so I modify it and ask him to save them all, the whole rotten family. I cannot stand the thought of Potter with Lily, but better that she be with him — as long as she stays alive. As long as she lives, there is a chance that someday, she will be mine.

Years ago, I insulted Lily in my rage at James Potter and his gang of rich hooligans. I had been humiliated and belittled and in my frustration and anger, I called her the worst of names in our world.

She is a filthy Mudblood, a witch born from a Muggle family. There are many of us in the wizarding world who believe such children do not belong among us, who have acquired our talents through genetic inheritance. We are Purebloods.

But despite her filthy genes, I love her. I have loved her since before we came to Hogwart's.

She grew up not far from me, albeit on the other side of town. My family is poor and dysfunctional, but there should be no shame in that, for my mother is a Pureblood and noble for it. In comparison, she was nothing. Her sister, Petunia, was a normal Muggle, beneath my notice. I never understood why it distressed Lily to leave Petunia behind to come to Hogwart's. But then, it's something Mudbloods may never understand about the superiority of our race.

The Dark Lord felt she was not worthy. But I told him I desired her, nontheless; she is, I insisted, the brightest witch of her age. I am not the only one to think so. You could see it in her green eyes, how clever, how intelligent she is.

In fact, those eyes are what drew me to her. They are the perfect color for a witch. If only she had been sorted into Slytherin! Her eyes are exactly the color of emeralds, exactly the hue to have made her Queen of Slytherin House. But she was sorted into Gryffindor, where the courageous James Potter stuck his talons into her.

I was distraught when I heard the news. I had not been invited to the wedding, and I told myself I didn't want to go. I couldn't help myself; I dreamt of conjuring an adequate reason to protest their vows. I fantasized as a dramatic arrival, dazzling her into sensibility!

In the end, I simply wept ... and started to plot how I could win her from Potter!

The Prophecy was perfect; I brought it to the Dark Lord, even suggesting that the child was Potter's, rather than Frank Longbottom's son. My plan was to have the Dark Lord kill Potter and the son, leaving Lily alive. Yes, she would be distraught, but I would be there to comfort her. We would marry; she could have other sons.

But Dumbledore refuses to help me as I wish. So instead, I beg for help to protect them all, even the detested James!

In return, I will do ... anything. Even if the headmaster orders me to turn my back on the Dark Lord, I will do it! Anything to guarantee the safety of my Lily Evans!

* * * * *

I am surprised I am not insensible. I received news that James Potter is dead; his murder was straight-forward, done in the way the Dark Lord favors. Potter's son, however, is not. He lives, having somehow defeated the Dark Lord, tearing the evil one's soul so that it drifts like a bad gas somewhere, more annoying than harmful.

They say his mother died defending him. That the Dark Lord had intended to fulfill my request and leave her alive for me, his faithless servant. But she insisted on protecting her son, and thereby imbued young Harry with a magic deeper than the eldest forest, deeper than the waters of any sea.

The Dark Lord, I think, would be befuddled by this old magic. He puts no stock in the concept of "love," for if a person loves, a person can lose — tragically and completely. A man who loves is a man who is guaranteed to lose.

I understand this. I have always understood it. Yet I love because I cannot help myself.

I remember when I started to lose Lily, calling her a Mudblood that sunny afternoon. I remember — again on my knees — begging forgiveness, and her telling me that she would not go down the path I chose, nor could I join in hers. I knew she had gone back to the Gryffindor common room distraught, and that James Potter would be ther to comfort her.

I remember when she spurned me for not understanding why Petunia's anger was so upsetting to her. I remember my feelings the moment she vowed to cleave unto James Potter at her wedding.

I remember her eyes. Green and sparkling, like emeralds in the sun, even when she was angry or weeping.

I saw the infant boy, Harry. He has his mother's deep green eyes.

I swore that for as long as she lives, I will love her. When she sacrificed her life in front of the Dark Lord, I believed my love had died.

I had thought she was gone, but I was wrong. She lives — in the body of her son, manifested in those beautiful eyes.

She lives in my broken heart, forever and ever. I know this to be true; my patronus has changed to a doe — a silvery doe! I must not reveal it to anyone, even at the threat of harm to my own self. For my Lily's patronus was a doe ... they say this happens to a wizard when under stress or shock. How could I explain the change from a bat ... to a doe?

For as long as Harry lives, his mother lives, and so too my love for his mother. I must protect him from the Dark Lord, and from himself. I cannot allow him to die, for — awful thought! — anything that is good in me, is now in Harry Potter.

But why — oh why? — are those eyes mounted on the face of James Potter!

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