"Weeeeeeee! Tuney, look! I'm flying!" A nine year old, red haired girl soared through the air like a lark, hair whipping in the summer air. Though high up enough, Lily still did not notice the slight, black haired boy, lurking behind a hawthorn bush in late blossom.But Severus Snape could see her and a small shudder sliding up his spine, making his heart beat faster, told him that she was of unforgiving nature and he saw that this girl was extremely pretty. Daring, for a moment, to peep out from his undignified hiding place, Severus was able to catch the words that he hadn't been able to hear before: What looked like the older girl, was edging nervously away from the younger, bouncing on the edge of her toes and stealing stealthy glances around to check that no one's watching. As far as Petunia can see, no one is. "Tuney! Look! Look what I can do!" Hearing Lily speak, Severus leans closer, peering through the prickling branches to see what is happening and his eyes grow wide in fascination as he watches the blossom Lily has picked up, eerily opening it's petals whilst Petunia looks on, a mixture of shock, horror, awe and deepest envy, plastered to her slightly horsey face. Pulling herself together, Petunia shivers and backs away, seemingly terrified. "Stop it!" she shrieks.
"It's not hurting you...." protests the younger, in defense of the offended flower.
"It's just not right.......How do you do it?" This time, there was definite envy in her voice.
"Isn't it obvious?" Unable to contain himself an longer, Severus lept from behind the bush, startling both girls. When he realized that both 9 and 11 year old were both staring at him, he blushed, unused to the attention."...I know what you are..." he added, for a mysterious effect; Petunia snorted. Snape went a little redder. "you're a witch."
Seemingly thinking he was being rude, Lily, who up until that point had been utterly spellbound, gave Severus a very nasty glare: "That's not a very nice thing to say!" Slightly dimmed by her untimely comment, and throwing caution to the winds, Severus whispered urgently, "NO! You are! I've been watching you!" He realized that this news must sound slightly creepy and threw in a "casual" compliment. " you've got loads of magic... All that time, I was watching..."
Severus stared at the slowly growing pile of ripped up grass-cuttings in front of Lily. Her hands were stained green with brown splodges of earth upon them, dotted here and there, in the same state as his own.They both had the same habit! Severus realized excitedly. His own mother would often scold him for the state of his hands, but he could avoid it by merely pointing out that she, too was always picking and plucking and shredding things, like the bits of frayed fabric that she sewed relentlessly day by day to try to earn a little money for them to live on. Severus supposed that he too would one day have to help with his mother's small business and he was dreading it, but maybe, he could help with the healing job instead. Eileen Prince was Spinners End's healer and when she wasn't ripping her hands off on needles or begging the local funeral service to give some old drunkard a proper send off because she'd been unable to save them in time, Eileen would sit hunched over a large cauldron mixing hundreds of different concoctions. Potions was a family thing and Severus and his mother were both very proud of it.
Lily, who had, Severus realized with a jolt, been watching him, asked quietly, as if she couldn't quite dare to ask in case she got a negative answer, "In your world..." she began hesitantly. Severus looked up, eager and ready to answer any of her questions."...Can you really send your mail by owl...?"
His nod was all it took to put a smile on her face, the same smile that Lily Evans reserved especially for their conversations about magic. And it was that smile that Severus treasured whenever he saw it. The only smile that could warm him and often make him want to return it.