**Alright, I'm going to try reposting the whole story here (Plus a new chapter). If it gets deleted again, I will wash my hands of the whole situation and never darken fanfiction.net's site again. The appendix hasn't been updated :( sorry… I did manage to copy a few of the last reviews before the 183 reviews I had originally for this story were deleted last week, so I will be updating that on my site – you'll have to look at my author page for the site address – for some reason when I typed in the address here, it totally messed up the post. I don't think it can read web addresses for some reason (??) maybe tomorrow (Feb. 23rd) Thank-you again to all who have offered support ****
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and all related characters and ideas are the whole intellectual property of Ms. J.K. Rowling and are hers alone to sell. I do not receive, nor would I accept any compensation for any of the owned intellectual property of Ms. Rowling (nor that which she has licensed to WB etc.). What follows is just a wacky little ditty I wanted to get out of my brain. It only got there because I so love that which Ms. Rowling created. No copyright infringement is intended.
Chapter 1: Go to Sleep
'Go to sleep, my dear good boy. Go to sleep my darling.' Severus Snape sung in a soft baritone as he gently brushed a last tear from the face of the child he rocked in his arms. 'Rest down deep, in dreams so sweet… You've naught to fear, for I'll be near…' With a sigh of relief he realized that the toddler had finally fallen back to sleep.
'Poor, poor little one…' he whispered, absent mindedly smoothing that mop of black hair. You'll look just like him when you grow up, he thought with a small smile at the irony – just like James bloody Potter, your father…
He leaned back in the chair, still rocking the child into a deep slumber before he tried to return him to his cot. He didn't think it was natural for one so young to have so many nightmares… it wasn't natural for a two and a half year-old to be as quiet and withdrawn as this boy often was either…
Is that the legacy of what you witnessed at the hands of Voldemort? he often silently asked the too reserved child. Or was it those Muggles? He couldn't begin to understand why the boys' Muggle aunt and uncle had rejected him – even he, Severus Snape, who had hated the boys' father, had fallen hopelessly in love with his son…
Does he fear further rejection? Less than a year and a half with the parents who birthed and loved him, less than a year with his mother's sister and family who resented him, and now… six and a half months with him. Potions master, teacher, former follower of evil, general all-around bastard, and current guardian of Harry Potter, The Boy-Who-Lived.
He stood up and ever-so gently placed the sleeping boy in his cot, gazing down on him for a long while. It had come as no small surprise to Severus to find himself responsible for this child. It was an even greater shock to find that he not only longed to keep the job, but he did so because, after only a few months, he found he couldn't love Harry any more than if he'd been his own son.
His own son… he couldn't hate James anymore. How could he possibly have any hate for a man who had helped create such a beautiful child. How could he find any room in his heart any more for hate? He wasn't sure if Albus had planned it like this, but loving this child had released him. The burden of guilt over things he'd done in his past wasn't gone, but it was more manageable now.
He knew that if people knew of his past, they might think that raising Harry was his penance. He knew better. Raising Harry was his reward – a reward he didn't deserve, but a reward nonetheless – for repenting. 'I will earn the right to love you little one,' he whispered, feeling a prickling at the back of his eyes. 'I'll never let you down.'