Summary: What might have been had Harry not gone to the Dursley's all those years ago, but instead been raised as a wizard.
Disclaimer: I do not own them, I just play with them.
A/N: This fic is AU, not canon. For this fic's purposes Voldemort will not stay near death.
It was a balmy night in October, and Severus Snape was about to go down to breakfast. He was enjoying the peace and quiet away from Hogwarts. He was just sitting down to the table, and his house elf Lucy was bringing him his coffee, when an owl came flittering through the open window.
"Who could be sending me mail at this hour?" Severus thought as he laid down his paper and untied the letter from her talon. It only took a moment for Severus to come to his senses and realize from the handwriting it was Lily's owl.
Opening the letter, he realized only the first part was Lily's handwriting and the rest was in the messy scratching he had come to recognize as James'. Severus let loose the breath he was holding and started to read it.
James and I have talked and we wish for you to come to the house tonight. I feel the Dark Lord is close, and I would not leave this world without you knowing.
Severus did not know what Lily wanted. He had only shared a few weeks with her before she had gone into hiding with James. They had gotten married in secret, knowing that Lily was pregnant, and not wanting to bring the child into the world without a stable family home.
Severus, what Lily is trying to say is that we would like to talk to you and would like if you would join us tonight at eight.
The letter said no more, merely having been signed by Lily and then James. Severus thought it was the oddest thing ever, but he was not one to over think things. He simply took them for what they were.
It was seven o'clock and Severus had just stepped from the shower. His hair was wringing wet and clean. How the students at Hogwarts would gasp if they could see him now, he thought with a sneer. Walking to the dresser, he pulled out a black shirt and pulled it on over his head. His thoughts drifted again to what James and Lily could possibly want, but seeing as he would get no answers until he got there, he hurriedly dressed.
Severus walked up to the house in Godric's Hollow and was about to knock on the door when it opened. Standing there was Lily, her smile as radiant as he remembered.
"Come in, Severus," she said, opening the door to allow him to pass, but she held his gaze for a few seconds. A look passed between them, one Severus had seen before on one hot, passion-filled night when Lily and he seemed to be the only people in the world.
As Severus walked into the sitting room, he saw James standing by the mantle, pacing the floor, as if something was bothering him.
"Severus, please have a seat."
Severus took the seat and the cup of tea being offered to him by Lily. There were a million things running through his mind as to what they wanted, but of course his face was a stone wall, seeming unnerved by all of this. He wanted to scream at them to just go ahead and say whatever it was, but instead he cleared his throat, hoping it would provoke one of them into speaking. It seemed to do the trick as Lily turned to face him.
"Severus, as you know, we dated for many months, and I want you to know before I go any further that I never regretted a moment of it. I loved you and, truth be known, a part of me still does. I was lost when you went away to join the Dark Lord, and I had no way of finding you, no way of telling you the things I needed to say."
Severus' mouth fell open as he listened to his only love Lily confess her feelings in front of James. He just knew at any moment the man would pull his wand and blast him into the next room, but James was taking it in stride.
His cup of tea long forgotten Severus' eyes watched those ruby red lips move, but the sounds did not reach his ears. These were the lips that had set his very soul on fire that night and for many nights after. He had loved no woman before Lily and no woman since. His biggest fear came true the night he had returned and found her gone. He had not wanted to leave her, but he could not defy the Dark Lord.
"Severus, did you hear what I said?" Lily asked.
Severus shook his head, trying to clear it, and realized he had not heard what she had said. He had been too mesmerized by the depths of her eyes.
Lily couldn't bring herself to repeat any of it, and she turned to her husband with pleading eyes. James could see the fear of rejection, the fear of what may come of this revelation. Taking a seat in the chair opposite Severus, he began again.
"Severus, it is no lie that I was jealous of your relationship with Lily. I let my anger show through and made your last year at Hogwarts unbearable, and for that I am truly sorry. I was younger then. I could not see that you were not out to hurt her. Since then Lily has told me of her love for you, how you helped her through many tough times with her sister."
Severus wished Sirius Black were here right now. Hell, he wished he had a recorder, as James Potter was apologizing to him, and this must mean the world was about to end.
"Severus, I wish to let the past remain in the past and let us move on and be friends."
Severus could not comprehend any of it. He could not fathom why James Potter was here asking for his friendship, and he wanted answers. "Why, why now after all this time has gone by?"
Severus did not miss the tear that slipped from Lily's eye, and he wished to run to her and wrap his arms around as he had done each night before they had fallen asleep, but it was not his place now.
"I know, Severus. I know of the nights of passion you shared with Lily, but what you did not know was the end result of those nights." Not being able to say it any other way, James just blurted it out. "Harry is your son, Severus, not mine."
The clatter of Severus' cup hitting the floor echoed throughout the room. His knees buckled and Severus found himself on the floor, the shock of the statement sending chills to the very core of his heart. It couldn't be true. He could not believe what he had just heard, but one look into Lily's eyes told him the truth. He was the father.
Severus was still reeling from all the information when he heard a soft cooing coming from behind him. When he turned, there was Lily, holding Harry.
The baby was his; this was his son. He wanted to hold him, to never let him go, but could he? He had never been a gentle man, caring only enough about Lily to ever show his softer side. How could he remove Harry from his home? How could he take the baby from the only father he had ever known. His questions were answered when Lily opened her mouth to speak.
"Severus, we want you in Harry's life. I want him to know you are his father, but as long as you are a spy, we can tell no one else. James and I would not have you miss out on his life."
Severus was stunned. He had no words for this moment. The usually sarcastic, snide man was at a loss. The tears that had been pooling in his eyes for the last hour flowed freely down his face as Harry was placed in his arms.
All the animosity of the years washed away that night as Severus got to know the real James, the one he had only seen from afar before. He was not a bad man, but instead a good father. James had known all along that Harry was not his, and yet he had taken him and loved him as his son. Severus stayed until the wee hours of the morning, watching Harry as he tugged on the hem of his robes and watching as Lily tucked him into bed.
What Severus had not told them was that his dark mark had burned. Severus would not leave his son for the Dark Lord tonight. He would suffer consequences for it, but as he stared down at the sleeping form of his child, none of it really seemed to matter. As he walked out of the house at Godric's Hollow, Severus promised he would come back tomorrow to go with them to the Halloween festival. He would not miss out on anymore of the important times in his sons' life.
When Severus apparated back to his home that night, he thought someone had been there. Looking around he saw that his things had been moved.
"Lucy! Has anyone been here to see me tonight?" he called to the house elf.
Lucy came in wringing her hands. "Master Malfoy came by to see sir, but sir was gone. He said he would be here tomorrow to see you."
"Did he say anything else?"
"No, sir, he only said he would see sir tomorrow."
"Very well. I am going to bed. Will you have breakfast ready at seven? I have plans for tomorrow and I need to go to Hogsmeade beforehand."
Lucy nodded her head yes, but backed out of the room slowly. Did her master just ask her for something? He never asked before, he usually demanded. Lucy decided it was best not to tempt fate and scurried back to her room before the world exploded.
Severus pulled off his robe and hung it on the rack and then slipped his shoes off. He was tired. His whole world had been turned upside down in the matter of a few minutes, and it had drained him. He could not think rationally, and he was not used to the feeling. He liked being in control, and he was certainly not in control now. Knowing tomorrow he would have to face Lucius gave Severus a dull headache. Rubbing his temples, he decided he would cross that bridge when he came to it. Nothing could ruin this night, not even the Dark Lord himself. Noxing the light, he rolled over and buried his head in the pillow, asleep in seconds.