Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to J. K. Rowling

Quote: In the hour of adversity be not without hope for crystal rain falls from black clouds.

Verse: "Many have become my enemies without cause; those who hate me without reason are numerous." Psalm 38:19

A/N: In memory of Grandma Dorothy who died December 21, 2010 and Aunt Sis (Mildred) who died February 6, 2011.

She Was Always With Me

Lily Potter sighed tiredly as the windows rattled softly. Gazing out the window her eyes absently focused on one of the beads of water on the panes from the earlier shower. She had been jumping at small noises all day; it was starting to drive her husband crazy. A soft giggle escaped pink lips. They had been married for almost three years but the thought of James as her husband still made her feel like a school girl with a crush.

Putting James' teacup back into the cupboard she tried to remember what she had been thinking. Oh that's right . . . jumping at small noises . . . she hadn't been able to make James understand when he had asked why she had always hated Halloween. He hadn't understood that every Halloween since she had been born something bad happened on October 31. Once she had broken her arm. Another year she had fallen out of a tree. The year after that she had gotten lost when she went trick-or-treating and just last year her poor baby had gotten violently ill. She really hoped he hadn't inherited her Halloween Curse™ (named by a nine-year-old Severus Snape). Her heart gave a painful twang when she thought about her childhood friend.

After he had called her a Mudblood she had asked him: 'What makes me so different?' She hadn't figured it out until almost the middle of seventh year; something she was still hitting herself for to this day. Lily sighed again.

The Potter's had escaped from Voldemort three times and were now in hiding under the Fidelius Charm with Peter Pettigrew, one of James' school friends, as the secret keeper. It was the perfect bluff, but with it all happening only a week before the end of October, Lily couldn't help but feel apprehensive. She didn't know if it was women's intuition or (as her husband said) paranoia. Still, she mused thoughtfully with another small giggle, constant vigilance.

An icy chill of something stole down her spine just then and she tried to (unsuccessfully) shake it off. Drying the last of the dishes they had used for late night tea Lily set the small plate in the cupboard with a small *clink*. Taking a steadying breath, after all they both trusted Peter to keep their family safe.

Opening the door to the sitting room she paused in the door momentarily, watching her boys as they played with pink and green smoke. Little Harry laughed delightedly as he tried to catch the green tinted vapor in a small chubby fist.

Most people said that Harry "Looks exactly like James, but he has his mother's eyes." But she knew better. He might look like her husband but Harry had her laugh, and her smile, and that sparkle in his eyes was identical to the one in her own eyes when she came up with one of her harebrained ideas. And she could already tell he was going to have her cheek, and her sense of justice and friendship, her intelligence, her compassion, her instinct,her tendency to fall into trouble (because it did; no matter what James said Lily never went looking for trouble, it went looking for her). Yes, Harry might look like James, and she already knew the boy had James' love of flying but Harry was going to be very much her son.

"James," She said; heart fluttering, cheeks reddening when those hazel eyes met hers, "It's getting late. It's past Harry's bedtime." Long strands of dark-red fell across her vision. Her husband scooped up their son in his strong arms before handing the toddler to her. She wrapped her arms around him, something in her relaxing now that she had her baby in her arms.

"See honey?" James said, yawning, "Nothing happened. You worry too much." He absently tossed his wand on the sofa as he stretched tense muscles. Her nose crinkled as it did when she disagreed with something he said but decided she was going to be nice and not mention it. A gate creaked outside, but not one member of the small family heard it. Baby Harry yawned widely, showing off tiny baby teeth. A tiny fist rubbed at a droopy green eye before blinking tiredly at the pretty red haired woman holding him.

Two heads snapped to the archway leading into the hallway as sharp *bang* echoed throughout the house. Little Harry blinked rather perplexedly at his parents as they exchanged a worried look and a quick kiss before James sprinted out into hall, turning sharply at the corner to face the front door.

"Lily, take Harry and go! It's him! Go! Run! I'll hold him off!" Panicked, not thinking rationally, she turned and sped up the stairs, her only thoughts about saving her son and disgust at herself for not listening to past experiences. She heard a high, cold cruel laugh from downstairs before the dreaded words traveled up the stairs and echoed in her mind – "Avada Kedavra!" – and she screamed, because she knew that James was dead, dead, dead, and he wasn't ever going to say her name again. He wasn't ever going to make her feel like nothing could touch her when he held her in his warm embrace. Wasn't going to look at her with loving hazel eyes. Wasn't going play with Harry and watch him grow up into a fine young man – a hero. Wasn't going to see him go to Hogwarts or get onto his house team and win game after game. She wasn't ever going to scold him for turning her hair hot pink.

And so she screamed, because it was the only thing she could do, because she couldn't bring him back no matter how much it hurt and she couldn't follow him because she had to protect their son. And she screamed again, because she couldn't even do that. She didn't have her wand and she was trapped in her baby's nursery.

But she had to do something so she yanked the chair away from the wall and slammed it against the door. Picking up heavy boxes and piling them against the door in what she knew was a hopeless attempt to save what was left of her family. Lily held her son close; knowing she was scaring him, but unable to help it. A giant hole had been ripped up in her heart, never, never, never to be healed because James was gone.

She cursed Peter; it had only been a week since the spell had been cast. There was no way Voldemort could have found him and got the secret out of him in so short of time. They had been betrayed, Peter had been the leak in the Order. It hadn't been Remus as Sirius had believed and James had protested; no friend of his was a traitor. But Peter was – was a rat – just like his animagus form. And now she felt stupid, because everyone knew that your animagus form reflected your inner self. And it was so obvious now that the rat was the rat.

And she should apparate, but she knew that in her state – panicked and without her wand – she wouldn't survive and that would be no help to Harry. Voldemort might even have put Anti-Apparition wards up. She was well and truly trapped.

Just then the door was forced open, the boxes and chairs she had hastily pushed against it being cast aside with an almost lazy wave of a long yew wand held between long white fingers. She dropped Harry in the crib behind her and shielded him with arms spread wide. Even as she did, she knew it wouldn't – couldn't possibly – protect her son from the monster before her. And he was a monster, he could no longer be considered human. He had done horrible, horrible things with his magic and he was less than a human could ever be. A strange ache grew in her breast and it took a moment for her to recognize what it was . . . she pitied this thing before her.

"Not Harry, not Harry, please not Harry!" Because really pleading was all she could do, futile though she knew it would be. And she had to wonder. . .

"Stand aside, you silly girl . . . stand aside, now." . . . What would this man in front of her have been like if had he been raised differently?

"Not Harry, please no, take me, kill me instead-" If he hadn't dabbled in things that shouldn't ever be dabbled in? If he had . . .

"This is my last warning-" . . . Been loved as a child. Cared for. Was precious to someone. Because she thinks . . . (and she wonders why he hasn't just killed her yet)

"Not Harry! Please . . . have mercy. . .have mercy . . . Not Harry! Not Harry! Please – I'll do anything-" . . . that if he had been someone's everything . . . he had been kinder, softer, and learned what love was. . .

"Stand aside. Stand aside, girl!" . . . then the wizarding world could have entered a Golden Age . . . and it would have been wonderful . . .

And then he raises his wand, and his lips move, and she knows she has failed her son – her precious, precious Harry – and she silently screams. There is a rush of green light headed right towards her, but she can't accept that she failed her Harry. So even as brilliant green eyes dull and a body hits the floor like a puppet whose strings have been cut and Lily Potter moves on to the next great adventure. . .a small part of her essence, her magic, stays. . .and latches onto the thing most important to her.

The thing that wasn't (and yet was) Lily Potter wraps itself gently – protectively – around the small boy in the crib just as the monster that used to be called Tom Riddle points his long wand in the toddler's face and Lily felt a sharp burst of indignation that he could be so cruel. Little Harry feels his mother's presence around him and he starts to cry, because even though he's far too young to understand what death is he does understand that he'll never see his mother again. . .the pretty red-haired angel who took care of him and loved him and sang him lullabies.

"Avada Kedavra!" Another flash of green light and Lily steels herself to do the impossible. And it hits her baby's forehead and rebounds and the monster is gone and Lily smiles because she was right and Harry is just like her because the impossible was always possible with her too and now together they've done something no one else has ever – or will ever – say they have done. The small black-haired child continues to scream because right now he Harry Potter, but he's also Tom Riddle – Lord Voldemort – and he's less than the meanest ghost; and all is pain and terror and he must hide.

So the thing that all that was left in the world of Lily Potter (except for a beautiful body lying broken on the floor of a room dangerously close to collapsing) soothes the baby with soft croons and soft touches and small feather light kisses on the spot that the Killing Curse hit. The toddler sniffles, not quite wanting to stop crying but unable to be unhappy when he knows his mother is with him. Lily Potter (because the thing taking care of Harry is just as much the fiery redhead as the Lily Potter that is tearfully embracing her husband in a place where we who are alive can never go) watches in astonishment as scar in the shape of a lightning bolt appears beneath all the blood – which has disappeared at her touch – and immediately heals and looks several years old.

Sighing for the third time that horrible evening Lily settles, curled up around her son, and waits for Dumbledore to send someone to pick up her son and send him to Sirius. Which (as much as she doesn't like it) is better than sending her boy to her sister.


Mother and son stirred as terrible sobs echo up the stairs. The witch smiled in relief when Hagrid bent down to pick up her son. There was a roar from the sky as a large motorbike dropped from the blue blanket overhead and a tall, carelessly handsome man jumped off before the machine had even come to a full stop. Sirius, for that is the man's name, strode to the even taller half-giant.

Harry watched the proceedings with the calmness of a child who has just been through great tragedy but can't bring himself to care while he's being comforted by the person who means the most to him. Lily watched in growing horror as Sirius asked for her son and was refused – was told that Dumbledore was sending him to her sister's house. Sirius hesitated before glancing around at the destroyed cottage before nodding in agreement. Immaterial lips purse in eerie resemblance to Minerva McGonagall at her angriest before the young woman spotted a spark in his eyes that she knows all too well, having been a member of the Order. . . A need, desire, for revenge. To make the one who made them hurt feel pain.

Sirius offered Hagrid his bike and the large man was careful not to drop Harry (and dead or not Lily would make sure Hagrid pays had he dropped her son) as he settled himself on the motorcycle seat. The former lion briefly explained how to fly the charmed muggle contraption before he disapparated – hunting a rat. As much as Lily fumed at the man for leaving her son, she did want the man caught just as much as the Black heir. Then they're flying and she sings softly to her son who falls asleep halfway through the trip. Tired, Lily resolutely stayed awake because she is not pleased.

They land, and Lily was surprised to see both Dumbledore and McGonagall in front of her sister's house. She glared at Dumbledore heatedly, hating the fact that she is not corporeal and so is therefore unable to slap him for even considering leaving Harry at Petunia's, not to mention actually leaving him on her doorstep with nothing but a letter.

She watched with growing resentment and disbelief as the years pass and rants to Harry in the silence of the night (cramped as they are in the small cupboard under the stairs) about how she knows Petunia was jealous of her for being able to use magic but that was not an excuse to be so horrid to her son.

She laughed when Harry innocently talks back to his aunt because she was right, he has her cheek, and late that night after the Dursley's have gone to bed Harry laughs with her and she smiles because she was right about his laugh too.

She was strangely delighted when her sister didn't help him in preschool (because that meant she got to) . . . but she's also the one who tells Harry that: "Yes, your name is Harry, not Boy and certainly not Freak.

Lily tells him about Hogwarts every night for a bedtime story. Tells him that he is a wizard and he will be learning how to use his magic when he turns eleven. She smiles at his enthusiasm and he smiles back and Lily watches Petunia flinch the next day when her big sister stares at the boy because it's her smile.

Lily was with her son when he turned his teacher's wig blue and when he apparated to the school roof and when he first spoke to that (very polite) Portuguese snake at the zoo on Dudley's eleventh birthday (which she has to admit was pretty cool). She was there when her sister's family left Harry with Arabella Figg across the street each year on Dudley's birthday and she shakes her head in exasperation and long-suffering when she realizes that Harry has indeed inherited her Halloween Curse™ as evidenced by the broken wrist and the accident which causes his need for glasses (he has her eyes).

She watched in amusement as the joy of being accepted to Hogwarts causes Harry to forget pretty much everything she has ever told him and he acts rather like her when she found out (because even though Severus told her she was a witch Minerva McGonagall can attest to the fact that Lily Evans didn't think she could have been a witch, "You must have made a mistake.").

She protects him as best she can when he goes to school (because she was right and he falls into Trouble's lap far too often for comfort. Harry never does things by halves . . . as evidenced by the troll his first Halloween at Christmas) and she worries about him as he tries to save the Wizarding World before he's even been at school a full year – she knew he was going to be a hero – and her heart aches as she remembers the grief she felt when she realized that James wasn't going to see it.

She knows Severus caught a glimpse of her in Harry's first potion lesson and that (combined with the fact Harry looks exactly like James and Severus hated James) is why Severus is being so cruel to her son. But just because she understands doesn't mean she has to accept it, nevertheless she listens to son's wishes and leaves him sometimes to wrap around her childhood friend's shoulders and they both know that she will continue to do so in the years ahead. Lily watches and guides him as he solves increasingly difficult (and increasingly dangerous) puzzles every year and finds out more and more about his father. She thinks the other's wonder why he doesn't ask about her, but she doesn't really care what they think. Her son is learning about her husband, and she feels guilty that she couldn't tell him – because talking about James is still painful, even after all these years.

She was startled when he figures out that Hagrid was tricked by the dragon egg dealer, because even though she knew he was going to have her intelligence and her instinct, she hadn't figured it out. She grits her teeth and bares it when he doesn't want to study because she knows that even if he does have her intelligence the Dursley's had crushed his intellectual curiosity.

She sighs and almost wishes she had been wrong about him having her sense of justice and friendship when she sees that sparkle in his eyes that James had learned to be very scared of whenever it appeared in identical eyes framed with dark-red hair. She worries as they step through the flames and they see Quirrell, because they can feel faintly that there is something wrong with him. Lily burns with the anger of a mother whose child is threatened when Voldemort orders his servant to kill her son, and all four beings are surprised with that anger actually burns the two evil wizards.

They both are absolutely furious when they see the bundle of letters in Dobby the house elf's hands. Both Potters are frozen in horror as the pudding crashes to the ground and the owl swoops in with the letter that completely ruins their summer. Mother and son are giddy with relief when the Weasley twins and Ron come and break them out in the middle of the night. Both fall in love with the Burrow and consider it home away from Hogwarts very quickly.

Lily and Harry are panic-stricken when attacks start up at school and students are petrified. They laugh together in shared delight when the whole school believes that Harry is the heir of Slytherin. Lily once again wishes that he hadn't inherited her sense of justice and friendship when Hermione is the one attacked and her son is determined to go to insane lengths to catch the culprit responsible. She almost has a heart attack (and yes Sirius she knows she doesn't have a body) when the boys are in Aragog's nest about to be eaten and later when Harry goes down alone into the basilisk's den.

Something squeezes her heart painfully when her baby is pierced by a poisonous fang and she weeps with the phoenix as Fawkes saves her son's life and Harry stabs Riddle's diary with the same fang that almost killed him. She watches Ginny Weasley closely because she knows that the girl has got it bad. She doesn't tell Harry but she'll be watching the girl as the years go on, to make sure that the silly little chit is good enough for her son.

Her anger amplifies her son's as Marge insults her husband, she was able to calm Harry when the large woman had insulted her but she wasn't about to take the woman putting down her husband in front of her and her son. Harry is in such a panic from blowing up his aunt that she isn't able to reassure him he's not about to be sent to Azkaban or expelled because of such a thing (forget doing such a thing to the Boy-Who-Lived, they would never get away with doing such a thing to her son) and their relieved laughs blend together in the safety of Harry's mind as she shares her childhood fears of the same thing.

That year is especially hard for the both of them as they are faced with the world's fear and hatred towards the one man Lily had always known had James' family's best interests at heart. Remus looks even shabbier than he did in the middle of the last war she realizes with a stab of guilt and sorrow.

Harry has Sirius Black under his wand ready to curse with a Blasting Hex his mother had taught him if it turns out he is lying and he really is with Voldemort (because just because he was not the Secret Keeper does not mean he was not working for the Dark Lord). When sorrow and self-hate and sincerity is all that the teen sees in the convict's eyes (he has always been good at reading people) he lowers his wand and takes charge (because no one else was getting anything done).

She panics when the dementor lowers his hood but she knows there's nothing she can do because she didn't die to save him from a dementor she died to save him from Voldemort. They both see the glow of the Patronus stag charge the dementors and drive them away and it is because she recognizes the stag – knows that it is more than just a Patronus, that her husband's essence is in that spell – that Harry believes that it was his father who cast the spell. The ache in her chest eases just enough to surprise her.

It's fourth year and both Lily and Harry are hoping for a single normal year. Was that too much to ask? They find out it was on Halloween, when the Goblet of Fire spits out a fourth name . . . Harry's. They are both shell shocked as they enter the side chamber where the other (the real) champions wait.

Harry tells Cedric to take the cup and Lily nods in approval. She had been on edge all year, both she and Sirius were waiting for Voldemort to make his move but Harry is doing the right thing. Then they both take it and all three disappear from the maze and reappear in a graveyard that seems strangely familiar to both Harry and his mother. Before they can figure it out Harry's scar explodes in pain and Cedric is dead. Harry's blood is taken and they are both surprised when Lily's hair shortens and a tiny Lily no bigger than six inches tall is poured in with the crimson life liquid into the cauldron.

The wands connect and the other half of Lily appears and they greet each other cordially, if a little awkwardly (for what is one supposed to say to oneself?) before both Lilies and all the others who came out of the wand (including James and the Lily that was with Harry is surprised when the hole in her chest heals almost completely at the sight of him) help Harry to return to Hogwarts. They know that even though Harry will ultimately face the monster before them, he's not ready yet.

That summer she soothes Harry as best she can as he tries to heal from Cedric's death . . . from being unable to do anything. The weight of the Wizarding World is on his shoulders and even though he doesn't know about the prophecy he does know that he failed. They both panic as a familiar chill descends upon the streets and blots out the light of the stars. Lily stares at the pink toad and swears that the first chance she gets Umbridge is going down.

As law after law is put into place by the High Inquisitor, Lily adds another mark next to the DADA teacher's name on her mental list titled: People Who Will Pay. (For those who are wondering she was number five; right under Voldemort, Pettigrew, Fudge, and Dumbledore, and right before Rita Skeeter.) With Dumbledore's Army, Occlumency lessons, giant snakes, and a mysterious hallway ("What about O.W.L.S?" Hermione protests) the end of the year appeared rather suddenly.

After the Department of Mysteries fiasco, in Dumbledore's office when he tells Harry of the prophecy the two of them have only one thought: "As thoughtful as it was to want to preserve my childhood . . . it was rather futile . . . as I never really had a childhood to begin with." But they don't say so out loud because they both agree that Dumbledore knows that he was wrong without them adding another burden.

When Slughorn insults Lily Evans by implying that it was surprising that she was so powerful because she was a Muggle-born Lily tried not to tear up when Harry defends her. She warns her son to be wary of him . . . for he is a collector of talented, powerful, and famous people and Harry is all three.

The school year progresses and Harry disbands the DA in favor of private lessons with Dumbledore that they both agree that – while interesting – doesn't seem like it would be much help against Voldemort. When Harry almost kills Draco Malfoy in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom both are positively horrified at what they could have (almost did) done.

Lily helps him through Severus' detentions and soon he stops giving them. (Nobody likes being glared at but unable to glare back.) She is grudgingly accepting when Harry kisses Ginny in the middle of the common room after a big game. She thinks it is something James would have done.

When Slughorn finally gives up the memory Harry and Lily almost vibrate with the joy. Almost. Both are rather disgusted with his money-making schemes. As the Potion Professor's memory plays out before them ice crawls around their hearts and refuses to move. Horcruxes. Seven of them. For some reason that word fills them with terror and a disgusting giddiness.

Dumbledore tells Harry that they are going after the locket. They both know that Draco is going to do something, so they give the Felix to Ron and Hermione with orders to take it should anything happen. Both are absolutely fascinated at all the protections that Voldemort had placed around the bit of his soul.

Lily is the one to steady and cajole Harry into making sure Dumbledore drinks every last drop of the glowing green potion in the basin. Both know Harry wouldn't have been able to do it without her help. Too busy wondering what the Headmaster saw because of the potion Lily is unable to stop Harry in time when he dips the goblet into the lake. He is unable to hear her prompt of: 'Fire!' in his ear as the corpse's hand grips his wrist and tries to drag the both of them down to the depths of the lake.

Then they are gone and flying to Hogwarts, terrified because of the Dark Mark over the Astronomy Tower. Dumbledore asks for Severus and when Harry protests Lily admonishes her son. She knows he doesn't like Sev (she cannot really blame him, the way Severus treated him. . .) but he has to trust Dumbledore's judgment. Draco comes and disarms Dumbledore before the Tower is swarmed with even more Death Eaters. Lily and Harry would have been frozen in place even without Dumbledore's spell when Snape (because she can't reconcile that mask of hatred on a murderer with her childhood friend – the man who loved her) casts the Killing Curse and Dumbledore falls.

Dumbledore's funeral and Harry's breakup with Ginny passes in a foggy haze for the both of them. They reluctantly return to Petunia's house, ready for a long summer of trying to convince the Dursley's to leave for their own safety and waiting for Harry's seventeenth birthday. They are both extremely impatient for the day when Harry can use magic outside of Hogwarts.

The day they are to leave arrives surprisingly quickly. Lily wishes once again for a tangible body when they are told that Remus and Nymphadora ("Don't CALL me that!") are together. Lily's presence and her soothing words are the only thing that keeps Harry from attacking them (magic or no magic) when the Seven Potter's Plan is revealed (along with his naked body).

Safe at the Burrow, Lily doesn't try to comfort her son over the death of Hedwig. She silently wraps herself about his frame, lending him the strength to keep it together long enough to escape. She is part of the reason Harry has such a hard time breathing when news of Mad-Eye Moody's death reaches them.

Lily silently chuckles at Molly's attempts at keeping the Golden Trio apart. She knows the three of them too well to know anything short of the Draught of Living Death would have kept the three of them from meeting and discussing and planning.

The wedding is beautiful and makes Lily cry. She is quite silent as Harry talks to Mr. Doge and learns about Dumbledore's past, for she is too busy remembering her own wedding to be bothered by such silliness. Then the Patronus comes and everyone is panicking as the *pop* of apparition comes from all directions. They escape, and Lily calms just in time for Harry to draw his wand and return the attack from a Death Eater. They have no idea how he found them.

They both feel a spike of white-hot rage as they find out what the Ministry is doing to Muggle-borns. The next time Lily gets really angry is when Remus shows up and tries to convince Harry to let him leave with them. . .leaving a pregnant Dora behind. Lily's anger fuels Harry's and he is bluntly honest and cruel as he tears into his father's friend. Driving him back into Dora's arms – Lily is sure – but it still hurt her baby for him to say such harsh words.

They are escaping from the ministry and both Harry and Lily are absolutely horrified by what they saw there (Ron getting kissed by a married woman who thought he was her husband was the only thing even remotely light-hearted).

The three take turns wearing the locket and Lily is dismayed to realize that it is hard to talk to Harry the nights he is the one carrying it. Then Ron leaves, and Hermione cries herself to sleep every night. Harry sends her to comfort his best friend. They visit Godric's Hollow, retrieve his sword, and break into Gringotts ("Take that, James! It's not impossible!") before returning to Hogwarts to retrieve another Horcrux (and they both shiver with disgusting delight).

Nobody was expecting the Final Battle to happen right then, but that's what happened. The night was rather blurry looking back. But the flashes that they remember are startlingly clear.

Harry hides with Hermione as all three listen to the conversation in the Shrieking Shack. Lily sobs brokenly as Voldemort leaves, remorselessly leaving a broken and dying Severus Snape bleeding and poisoned on the floor. Lily knows he is a murderer and she knows that she shouldn't care, but she does and she is happy when Harry makes his way over to Severus.

"Take it," He forced out. Silvery memories are coming out of eyes and ears and nose along with blood and venom. Hermione hands over a conjured bottle silently and Harry collects the memories just as silently. Hermione backed away, somehow knowing that the next few moments were going to be very private.

"Sometimes," Severus coughed hoarsely, "When I look at you. . .I can almost see Lily." Harry sighed softly, sadly.

"Professor . . . she was always with me . . ." Harry lets her take over and Lily's image replaced her son's. His body shortened and his hair lengthened and brightened to dark-red. His face changed into that of his mother's, becoming more feminine and delicate. Harry is now the one wrapping his spirit around his mother's body as she looks into dark eyes.

"I always loved you," Severus whispered. Green eyes well up with tears and Lily nodded shakily.

"But I realized it far too late. No matter what," She promises, "you will always have been and will always be my best friend."

"Because she was always with you too," The words are whispered from an intangible boy wrapped around the live body of a woman who died sixteen years ago. Dark eyes light up right before they dull forever.

Severus Snape was dead.

The next thing that stood out was after Harry had died (but hadn't really) and come back. She hadn't left like they'd thought she would have . . . and strangely they were both okay with the idea of her staying with him until he died.

Lily started to feel weaker and weaker though, as her baby boy confronted Voldemort. It didn't feel like she was leaving . . . more like she was going to sleep. Right before Lily Potter fell into a coma (only to be stirred at important times in her baby's life; his proposal, his wedding, and the birth of his children for example) she heard Harry give Tom Riddle one last chance to save himself. And she smiled . . . because she had been right all along. He had her compassion . . . and he most definitely was a hero. . .

And she would always be with him.