Summary: Sequel to Rewriting History. A threat against the Potter family lets them inside the Prince Manor, where Severus Mentis lives… along with a guest in the shadows. Slash.
Pairing/s: AbraxasAstus and some couples from the books.
Warnings: Slash, some violence.
Disclaimers: I don't own Harry Potter.
The awaited sequel to Rewriting History! Enjoy!
Lily Potter had been cleaning out some cupboards in the house when she stumbled onto an old photo album. Hearing her husband, James, play around with the twins, Harry and Harrison, along with Sirius and Remus outside made her relax a little and sit down with the album in her hands. She already knew what was in there.
Yet she couldn't help but opening it. Looking around, just to make sure no one was nearby, Lily then picked the album up and carefully inhaled.
The slightest scent, just barely there, of potions ingredients and fumes. Or perhaps she just wanted the scent to be there. It didn't matter. She put it back on her lap and smiled a little.
It was one of the last gifts she had received from Severus Mentis.
Still to this day she didn't know what had happened. The summer between their fourth and fifth year something happened to Severus, because he wasn't the same. Not for the rest of the school years at least. He kept to himself, avoided everyone else and Lily was ashamed to say that she gave up. Perhaps that was what he wanted. She didn't know.
Although they communicated every now and then these days, it wasn't the same. She sent him birthday and Christmas cards, as well to the Malfoys. She didn't know if she once had known Severus' father's birthday or not, but she sent a card every Christmas for him too. She didn't expect replies, but some years she received it, mostly from Bellatrix Black and Narcissa Malfoy. And from Narcissa came a greeting from the whole family, Abraxas included.
She looked up from the album, and saw James in the doorway.
"Sorry," she said. "Lost in thoughts."
"Oh, this?" She stood up. "Old album. Severus gave it to me in… third year, I think?"
"He gave you a photo album?" James said and opened it after receiving permission. "Wow. It's so hard to imagine these people laughing and joking around as us…"
"They're people, just like everyone else," Lily said.
James meant the Malfoys. The Blacks. The Mentis. Because that's what the photos showed. Some Muggle. Some magical. But all of them showing people Lily once had held dear. Well, she still held them very dear, but she had grown away from them despite not wanting to.
Lily looked down. Then up at James. "You don't remember?" she said. "You've seen him before."
"Have I? Can't remember him."
"That's Astus, Severus' father."
She did wonder what had caused Severus' withdrawal from friendship. For some time, she believed it had something to do with Astus since the teen refused to discuss his father after the summer after their fourth year.
"Well, I met him like once," James said and handed the album over. "Besides, you're the smart one in the family. I just fly on a broom and know how to throw a mean spell on dark rebellions."
Lily rolled her eyes and got a kiss on the cheek together with a cheeky smile.
"Why are you here anyway?" she said. "The kids are still outside."
"It's lunchtime," James said. "Thought I'd whip something up."
"I do know how to!"
"Just not very many dishes."
"Well, enough to get by," James replied. "Something light, cuz' the kids are gonna pass out if we cook something too heavy."
It was a warm day, and Lily was instantly worried that Harry or Harrison would get sunstroke.
"Don't worry," the man added seeing her distressed face. "Padfoot and Moony cast cooling spells on them. The kids are just fine."
Lily nodded, and James threw her another smile before walking to the kitchen. She put the album next to the others in the living room, carefully dusting away some dust from the bookshelf.
The house they lived in was in Godric's Hollow. A nice, quaint little village. Nothing much going on. And certainly not a place dark rebellions thought one of their greatest hindrances would live. James had inherited a large manor as he was sole heir to the Potter throne, but he hadn't wanted to live there. He wanted a homely place, and the house in the village was perfect for that.
Harry and Harrison like it as well. Now, it could be confusing, their names being so alike but Lily had no troubles seeing who was who. While looking like each other in the face and body, her two boys were quite different. Harry was vibrant and had endless bouts of energy, much like his father while Harrison was calmer and preferred to watch than do things. He was timid, quite different from both his parents but Lily didn't mind. She loved them both dearly. Harry was the one who had made friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger in particular, but Harrison tagged along with them often enough.
They also happened to be in different houses. Harry was in Gryffindor along with Ron and Hermione while Harrison was in Ravenclaw. He had also befriended Lucius Malfoy's son, Draco. Seeing as Lily had known Lucius quite good when she was young, James didn't really say much about it. But it was clear he didn't completely trust the man. She thought it rather silly, but James was stubborn and Lily didn't want to argue about it. She was just glad that Harrison and Draco got along.
Thinking about them made her think about Severus again. He was the potions professor at Hogwarts. She knew from the start he would be something amazing in potions, with the amount of time and effort he put into it, but to just remain a teacher… well, he did write articles and made potions to others but his main position was as the potions professor and Head of Slytherin.
She knew he had gained full access his mother's family's vaults and properties when he turned seventeen, and was living at the Prince Manor. His mother had perhaps married a Muggle man, but she hadn't been disowned. Everything went to Severus due to that. Lily sometimes wondered if he lived there all alone. He hadn't married. Had never even found someone to live with, from what little she had heard. Severus preferred his life private, but it was common knowledge he had no children. She thought of it as a shame. He would have been a good father.
Well, at least he was godfather to Lucius' and Narcissa's son. As he was in Slytherin, Harry had, like James, a tendency not to like him or his friends. Harrison didn't seem to care about that.
Lily turned from the bookshelf and the album, surveying the room. It looked clean enough despite her rummaging through the cupboards. She heard James work in the kitchen and decided to go and help him. She passed through the room but before she exited it she turned and had a last look at the spine of the old album Severus once had given her.
It shamed her to realize she barely even knew how his voice sounded now. Her sons probably knew more about that than what she did. She knew how he looked like, his picture showed up often enough in potions articles or interviews, but how many years since she sat down with him and just talked? Some days she was just seconds from writing a letter begging for that. But she never did.
Out of fear, or due to him being almost a stranger, Lily didn't know.
She tapped the doorframe, bit her lip as her eyes stayed locked on the album. Then she gripped the wood for a moment before letting go and leaving the room.
Hogwarts was quiet during the summers. Most of the professors were at their homes, spending time with their families or projects they were unable to properly indulge in during the school year.
Severus Mentis was one of them, however, for the moment he stalked through the halls of the quiet castle. His black robes stayed on despite the hot weather, and his pale face betrayed nothing if he felt uncomfortable. His mask of indifference had grown almost natural to adapt to in public. He had been using it for a long time after all.
He wasn't there to stay, he was just stocking some of Poppy's supplies and looking after some potions set to simmer over the summer. He had numerous potions he worked at in his own home, but there was always one or two at school.
The dungeon was a welcome relief of coolness compared to the hot corridors above, but Severus didn't betray anything nor did his pace slow to enjoy the cold.
After securing the potions and making sure his office was respectably clean, Severus went home.
The stillness of the manor surrounded him as he slowed down in front of the fireplace. There was this odd little noise here and there, the sounds that belonged in an old house. He took a breath, and relaxed. The cold mask melted away and he looked around. The scurry of feet could be heard, but he knew it was just the house-elves keeping themselves busy.
He walked out of the living room and through the front hall, up the stairs to the second floor. There were several wings in the house, but he took to the right immediately after coming up, and came into a corridor of several doors, and a set of double-doors at the end. The master bedroom.
Which he didn't live in. His room was to the left of the master bedroom, the others being guest rooms. Some had the same guests, as the room opposite of his. That one belonged to Lucius and Narcissa. Draco had the room next to theirs after he had grown old enough to have a room on his own. Next to his own belonged to, surely surprising to almost everyone else and natural to him, Petunia Evans. Unlike her sister Lily, who finally had given up on trying to make Severus open up after fourth year, Petunia had never stopped writing him. And in turn he had opened up to her.
Of course he didn't blame Lily. He still considered her a friend, despite their obvious difficulties at speaking with ease with each other. He communicated more with Remus than with Lily, but also that connection had been strained with Severus' behaviour in fifth year until graduation.
Perhaps he had done it on purpose, in an attempt to be left alone. Or maybe he hadn't done it with conscious thought at all. Severus didn't know now, and there was no meaning in trying to figure it out. What was done had been done.
He walked up to the master bedroom and knocked. The one living there was who mattered to him. There had been no question when he moved in, that this room would be offered to this person. After all, Severus had turned out to be who he was thanks to this man.
A quiet voice, and Severus opened one of the doors. Faint lights of the summer spilled through the thick curtains, and he slipped inside. Someone moved on the bed at the other side of the room, and a shape sat up.
"I'm sorry," Severus said. "Did I wake you?"
"No worries," the voice replied. It had a soothing effect on Severus, its deepness seeping into his bones and making warmth bloom in his chest. He hadn't told anyone that though, as they wouldn't understand. "What time is it?"
"Near lunch. Would you like to dine with me?"
"May it be done in the living room? I shant be eating much."
Severus sat down on the bed and a cold hand settled over his. He didn't flinch. Perhaps others would have, but he had nothing to fear from this touch, nor did he want to withdraw.
"Naturally," he said, gripping the cold hand tightly. He made a note of asking the house-elves to draw the curtains in the living room, to shut out the worst of the sunlight. "Will you be eating the normal way, or should I ask Minty to get you some fresh blood?"
The shape leaned closer. Light hit upon the pale face and dark cascades of hair framed it. Glittering green eyes and shadows underneath them, Astus Mentis smiled so his sharp teeth showed.
"I believe I would like the blood today," he said.
I hope you enjoyed this new beginning of the sequel to Rewriting History.
Chapter two: A quick trip to the past tells us how Astus returned to his family, and in the present a new enemy makes its appearance… attacking the Potter family. And so Lily and Severus are reunited in a rather different scenario that anyone of them might have thought.
I don't know when chapter two will come out, but I will get it out when I can.