The Mistress of Charms and Enchantment
1 – Night of the Conception
Severus lazily opened his eyes as the first rays of the early autumn sun tickled his nose. 'I can't do that anymore,' he mused, terrified as he remembered the nightmares that had occupied his mind during the night. 'Lily is in too much danger with me.' He sadly looked at his wife, who was still peacefully asleep with a smile playing on her lips.
Only Lily's best friend Alice and her mentor Minerva McGonagall as well as his own friend Poppy Pomfrey knew that they were married. Everyone else believed that one day Lily was going to marry James Potter. Although she had officially taken his name as Lily Snape, no one except for their three friends knew about the matter. Everyone else still called her 'Lily Evans.'
"Sev," Lily said sleepily, pulling him into a kiss. "What time is it?"
"It's still early Lily, but, I need to speak with you," Severus said, terrified about what he had to tell her. "I'm so sorry, Lily, but we have to separate. It's too dangerous for you. I spent the whole night having nightmares about the Dark Lord finding out that you're my wife, and I just can't endanger your life like that. Ever after the last Death Eater meeting a few days ago I've been worried, and I believe..."
"Sev! No!" Lily interrupted him, horrified. "I don't care if it's dangerous. I just want to be together with you. I love you more than my life."
"So do I, Lily," Severus said softly, "and because I love you, I don't want to endanger you. Lily, you must separate from me and marry Potter. He'll be able to keep you safe. Please, Lily, try to understand me. Perhaps, if the war is over, we can get together again, but I don't want the Death Eaters to come after you, and they would surely come, if the news that I was married to you made its way to the Dark Lord."
Lily buried her head in her pillow, sobbing uncontrollably. "I'm so sorry, Lily," Severus whispered in his soft, silky voice, gently rubbing circles into her back. 'I'm really sorry, but I just can't endanger her like that,' he thought. 'She'll be better off with someone who is on the light side. Maybe we'll be able to live in better times sometime.' With that, he merely grabbed his most important possessions and quietly left the house.
When Lily woke up, Severus was gone. Knowing that she had still a week of holidays left, she spent the following days at home, mourning, not wanting to share the sad news with her best friends or see anyone else. However, one morning, she woke up feeling absolutely horrible. Her stomach felt queasy and she had to throw up a few times in spite of not having eaten anything for three days. 'I better ask Poppy to check on me. It's probably only the stomach flu, but I feel so horrible, and I want to speak with Minerva anyway. There is no better time than a Sunday morning,' she mused and quickly dressed for the first time in days, before she leaned into the fireplace and called Poppy.
"Of course you can come through, Lily," Poppy said gently and led the younger woman to a small single room behind her office, turning into Healer's mode as soon as she had helped her to lie down. "Congratulation Lily, you're pregnant," she said softly after a few waves of her wand.
"I'm WHAT?" Lily blurted out, horrified, and broke into tears. "He left me," she sobbed. "He said it was too dangerous for me to be together with him."
"Oh Lily, I'm so sorry," Poppy said softly, gently rubbing circles in the young witch's back. "Lily, I'm sure that he'll see reason and come back earlier or later. I've never known a man who loved his wife more than Severus loves you."
"He won't come back," Lily sobbed. "He told me perhaps after the war, but will it ever end? And now I'm pregnant with his child. He told me to marry Potter, saying he'd be able to keep me safe."
After a small pause, Lily asked suddenly, "What did you say earlier? Today is the fifth day of my pregnancy? That means that the child was conceived during out last night together." With that she began to cry even more.
"Lily, you must stop crying, otherwise, you'll harm the baby," Poppy said firmly. "Do you want me to call Minerva, or would you prefer going to her rooms to speak with her?"
"Can you call her please?"
Five minutes later, her former Head of House and good friend Minerva McGonagall entered the room. "Good morning, Lily, what's wrong?" she asked in concern, surprised to see the young woman, who was like a daughter to her, sit on a bed, crying.
Lily quickly filled her in, causing the older woman to frown. "Lily, as heartbreaking this must be for you, I believe that Severus was right when he said you should marry James. You need someone to keep you safe in these times, especially with a baby," Minerva said thoughtfully. "You should get together with him quickly and make everyone believe that he is the baby's father."
"Is there is a way to magically prolong a pregnancy for a few weeks?" Lily asked, turning to Poppy. As a Mediwitch in training at St. Mungo's Lily already knew a lot about healing; however, she lacked Poppy's experience, and she couldn't cast spells on herself anyway.
"I believe there is a way," Poppy said thoughtfully. "However, we'll have to do that in about two months' time, so that it'll be safe for the baby. If you still want to extend the pregnancy, come to me when you're in the tenth or eleventh week. In the meantime, I'll do some research."
"Yes please," Lily said gratefully, "provided that Potter still wants me to marry him." 'Well, he asks me every time he sees me at the hospital,' a voice at the back of her mind spoke up.
Lily spent the whole day at Hogwarts, talking with the two older witches, and by the time she returned to Godric's Hollow, she felt very much consoled. Before she left Hogwarts, Poppy handed her a huge phial, instructing her to take one spoonful of the potion each morning to help with the nausea, and she visited the library and borrowed a few Charms books with Minerva's authorisation.
During the following weeks, Lily did not only approach James Potter, who was over the moon with joy that his adored Lily finally gave in as he proposed to her for the umpteenth time, but she did extensive research on concealment charms and enchantments. 'Will I be able to cast the spells at myself, or do I have to ask Minerva or Poppy for help?' she wondered for a few days, before the small voice at the back of her head finally managed to convince her with the argument, 'You don't have to cast them on yourself anyway; you cast them on the baby.'
Four weeks into her pregnancy, Lily and James married. Only the day before, she had sent the divorce parchments to the Ministry to cancel her marriage with Severus Snape. No one, not even her new husband noticed that she didn't officially change her name to Potter but remained Lily Snape.
A few days after their wedding, Lily cast a handful of strong charms on the baby to make it look like the man, who was not his father. Later the same day, she travelled to Hogwarts for Poppy to check on the baby.
"Lily, what did you do to the child? His magical signature is slightly different from what it was before," Poppy asked in confusion, causing the young witch to confess what she had done.
"I'm going to repeat the spells once a month though, so that they won't fail and can't be accidentally countered at least until he is seventeen," she said in a small voice.
"I understand," Poppy finally said, making a mental note to write the specific spells down in case they would be needed in the future. "I believe that the child's magic is already extremely strong for a baby in the fifth week," she said thoughtfully. "Oh well, it's no wonder considering that he is Severus' and your son. Anyway, I'll be able to cast the spell to prolong your pregnancy much earlier than I expected. Do you want me to cast it right away?"
"Of course, Poppy, yes please," Lily said gratefully and observed how the older Mediwitch waved her wand in a complicated motion.
James Potter was extremely happy when Lily told him that she was pregnant, and when Harry was finally born after ten months of pregnancy, the supposed to be father did not leave her sight. To Lily's relief, the baby looked like the spitting image of James – with the exception of her green eyes. 'Thank God,' she mused. 'Severus always told me how much he loved my eyes. I hope he'll once be able to come back to us and claim Harry as his son.'
Unbeknownst to her husband, Lily managed to charm the birth certificate, ending up with two certificates, one of them listing Harry James Potter with Lily and James Potter as parents, the other one confirming the birth of Alexander Severus Snape with Lily and Severus Snape as parents. No one at the ministry noticed the simultaneous birth of two boys with similar conditions. The only real difference apart from the fathers on both certificates was the godparents. While the first certificate listed Alice Longbottom and Sirius Black as godparents, the second one recorded Minerva McGonagall and Poppy Pomfrey as godmothers.
Harry loved all four of his godparents. He loved to cuddle with Alice, fly with Sirius, play ball with Poppy and called Minerva "Gwanny," which was his first word that he spoke with ten months, causing everyone to notice how strong Harry's magic was to enable him to speak at such an early age.
Only once, Severus visited Lily to warn her about the prophecy and instruct her to go into hiding.
Harry apparently liked the darkly clothed man and happily babbled, "Dada dada dada," causing Lily to turn white, afraid that her heart would stop beating any minute.
"Daddy is here, Harry," James called from the back, causing Lily to sigh in a mixture of relief and disappointment.
Throwing Severus a pleading look, she whispered, "Severus, please keep our child safe," not sure if he would understand what her harmless sentence implied.
Seeing that James headed outside with Harry on his shoulders, Severus pulled his wand. "Herewith, I swear on my magic to keep your child safe, Lily."
"Thank you, Sev. I love you," Lily said relieved, fighting back the tears that welled at the back of her eyes.
Only a few weeks later, Lily pleaded with the Dark Lord to leave her son in peace and kill herself instead.
I'm not a native speaker of English. Please excuse my mistakes or help me to correct them.
All recognizable characters belong to J. K. Rowling, and I am not earning anything by writing this story.