A/N: Written for Ninja Potter's Glee Prompts Challenge. This is actually my second response to the challenge, the first being a George/Angelina vehicle entitled 'Lean on Me', if anyone is interested...
This time, my prompt was the song 'Faithfully', and here is how I chose to interpret it. Enjoy!
It is a cold and windy Halloween night in Godric's Hollow. Rain drizzles in a constant stream as small clusters of children rush from house to house in their brightly coloured costumes. Smaller infants squall in their parents' arms at the sight of the gruesome masks and frightening costumes while their excitable siblings happily count up their spoils. Pretty princesses in gauzy gowns shriek and career along the cobbled street away from eye-patch wearing pirates and green0faced aliens. As thunder rolls in the sky overhead, the delighted giggles can be heard throughout the small village. Gardens are decorated for the occasion and the new family at the top of the main street have thrown a party complete with loud pop music and enthusiastic conversation. Adults spill happily onto the front porch and into the cobwebbed and tomb-stone dotted grass, giddy with a mixture of heady excitement and alcohol.
Standing in front of the house, the black-robed man goes unnoticed among the bizarre and brilliant costumes.
His expression is unreadable as he watches a young couple totter contentedly down the path from the house. Just as they reach the gate, the man gently lifts the masquerade mask of his young princess and presses his lips to hers. Smiling, his companion leans into his embrace and slides her arms around his neck.
"Happy Halloween mister," she calls cheerfully as they career haphazardly down the street to their home. The man smiles ruefully and pulls his dark cloak tighter around his body. He turns his back on the frivolity and walks slowly and erectly down the small cobbled street. His overlong black hair hangs in curtains around his face, limp with rain and grease, but he does not bother to sweep it out of his eyes. Instead he keeps his gaze rooted on his feet as he splashes through deep muddy puddles, studiously avoiding the curious gazes of the villagers he passes. If he wanted to, he could have Confunded them into forgetting his appearance this evening, but he sees no need. These Muggles will not cause him any trouble.
The church yard, as always, is completely deserted; it is late, and Halloween has become a night for fun and frivolity, not remembrance. The man rubs his hands together for warmth as he pushes open the kissing gate. He passes row after row of neatly tended tombstones, decorated with beautiful floral arrangements and tokens from loved ones. He pauses only once, at the grave of a stillborn infant. He withdraws his wand from his pocket and blows a jet of hot air from its tip, drying the sodden fur of the little white teddy bear that lies nestled among the wreaths. He bends to tap the bear's nose and whispers a single word: "Impervius."
Then he continues towards the back of the cemetery, where the graves are older and less well tended. Another rueful smile plays on his lips as he steps carefully through the mass of weeds and nettles that obstruct his path. Eventually he comes to a halt in front of a simple headstone of white marble. He crouches down in front of it and focuses his attention on only one of the two names engraved in the stone.
"It's been too long," he murmurs sadly.
The grave is completely overgrown. Though he cleaned it up the year before, nobody has visited to maintain it since then. Of course they haven't. One of the occupants of the grave has only a single living relative, a son who does not know of the grave's location. The other shares this son and has one more relative, the latter of whom spends most of her time pointedly ignoring this fact. Weeds coat most of the ground in front of the headstone and a steady trail of ivy has begun to creep up the face of the headstone. The only decoration on the grave is a wilted, withered, dead wreath. The petals are long gone and the leaves are brown and papery. Sad smile returned, the man removes the wreath with gloved hands and conjures up a spade with his wand, setting to work to clear and tidy the grave. When he has finished, he moves his wand arm in a slow circle. An immaculate wreath blossoms immediately, spinning in mid-air. He catches it and holds it for a single moment, breathing in the sweet aroma of the petal's perfume, and then places it right below the name of his beloved. The lilies in the wreath are flawless under the silver moonlight overhead.
"Until next year as always Lily," Severus whispers as he rises to his feet and prepares to disapparate. "Your faithful servant. My heart, as ever, is yours."
He will be back next year on the anniversary of her death as always. The grave will once again have fallen into disrepair, and he will once again sit in the cold and tend to it. Once again, he will replace a withered wreath with a new one. Once again he will trace her name longingly. It is a routine he is well used to by now, a routine he has followed every year since the first anniversary of her death. It is the best way to feel close to her. He hopes she can see him now, and that she knows that he has always been faithful to her.
He thinks she probably does.
This was my first Lily/Severus-type piece. Please review and tell me what you think!