Severus sat in his cottage watching the fire burn. Deep in thought he didn’t notice the door to his cottage creak open slowly.
With a bang the door flew open completely and Severus spun around and pointed his wand at the open doorway. “Who goes there?”
“It’s me Severus,” a tired voice said.
“Albus,” Severus said curtly.
“May I come in?” Dumbledore asked softly.
“If you must,” Severus said, moving aside and letting Dumbledore sit down. The latter sat down in an armchair next to the fireplace. Severus sat down in an opposing armchair.
Dumbledore arched his hands together and said pleasantly to Severus, “Do you know how long you’ve been here?”
“You mean dead?” Snape asked snidely, “A week?”
“You’ve been here for almost a month,” Dumbledore said bluntly.
“But… It hasn’t felt that long…” Severus said, his eyes wide.
“Yes… Time does seem to flow slower here,” Dumbledore replied.
“So Albus,” Severus said dryly, ”I assume there is more to this visit than discussing time.”
“Indeed,” he said.
Severus motioned with his hand for Dumbledore to continue. Dumbledore smiled pleasantly. “So, Severus, why have you not ventured outside of this cottage?”
“I don’t deserve to be here,” Severus snapped, “No one wants me here.”
“That’s not true,” Dumbledore said tiredly.
“Forgive me for not jumping in joy,” Severus said sarcastically.
“Lily’s glad you’re here,” Dumbledore said quietly.
Sending a pained look at Dumbledore, Severus said, “Lily does not want me here.”
“And you know this how…?” Dumbledore questioned.
“Because she told me,” Severus answered sadly.
“When was the last time you saw her?” Dumbledore asked him.
“When I first got here,” Severus admitted.
“And that would’ve been a month ago, no?” said Dumbledore, smiling. “Perhaps she’s changed her mind?”
“I’m responsible for her and her husband’s death. Also for the destruction of any normal life their son could have had. She can’t forgive me,” Severus muttered.
“You repented. You kept him safe,” reminded Dumbledore.
Severus laughed without humor. “By being a bully to him? Making his life miserable. I’m sure she can’t wait to thank me for that.”
Dumbledore’s eyes were glinting. “I never thought of you as a coward, Severus.”
“A coward?” Severus spat. “I sacrificed my life to save England.”
“But you will not apologize to one woman and her husband?” Dumbledore said, his voice staring to lose its patience.
“I’ve earned lot in life, Dumbledore. And now I wish to spend the rest of my days here. In this cottage,” said Severus, his tone final.
“So be it,” said Dumbledore softly. “But first there is someone I want you to see.”
“Who?” Snape asked.
The door opened again and Regulus Black stepped forward. “Hello Severus.”
“Regulus? What are you doing here?” asked Severus incredulously. “You were a Death Eater.”
“So were you,” Regulus said bluntly. “I, like you, sacrificed my life to destroy Voldemort.”
At that moment, Dumbledore slipped through the door and headed to his cottage. Severus and Regulus would want to have a private moment, he believed.
“You – what? Why didn’t he tell us? We were told that you were executed for deserting,” Severus said.
“I disappeared when the Inferi dragged me to the bottom,” told Regulus, a shadow passing over his face. “I took a Horcrux that night and hid it with Kreacher the House Elf. It as that Horcrux that Ronald Weasley killed with the Sword of Gryffindor, the night you hid it in the pond.”
Severus looked astounded at what he had learned. “You died to stop him?”
“I did,” Regulus said simply. “Though I stopped him not for another person but for my own good. I was trying to save my own skin. I failed.”
“Why are you telling me this?” Severus questioned.
“You are a much better man than myself, Severus. If I was able to apologize and receive apologies of my own, so can you,” Regulus said softly.
Severus was silent for a few seconds, thinking. “Very well. I will go to Lily tonight.”
A/N: Part 3 will be up… soon…
I was too lazy to write the rest, but this will do for now I guess.
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