A world without parents is a lonely, portless world with no safety and no justice - this is a truth Stiles Stilinski learned when he was very young. But at nine years old, at twelve, he couldn’t understand just how true it was; that the powerful, indefinable wrongness that obscured his memories of his mother was more than a child’s sense of unfairness at having his mom taken away.
It’s not until a globetrotting great-aunt blows back into town after a many-years absence that it starts to dawn on him: that his mother’s death was anything but natural; that it was certainly anything but fair.
This was submitted back when this blog was just starting up (five months ago!!) and I’ve finally gotten around to reading it! Thanks to mouseface for sending it in.
First off, I’m honestly stunned this fic isn’t one of the fandom darlings planted firmly on every Sterek rec list ever made. Seriously. I’m baffled. I’m rubbing my eyes and staring at the measly 90 kudos the final part has scrounged, wondering how it could have slipped through the cracks, and actually getting kind of mad about it?
It involves the discovery that everyone’s memories of Stiles’ mother have been tampered with and that Stiles and Derek’s histories are more closely intertwined than they ever could have realised. (When I read the series summary, I thought it was implying that the Sheriff is dead too, which is a sometimes-dealbreaker for me. If you’re the same, have no fear! He’s very much alive. Edit: Also, the series is marked as incomplete, but the ending of the third part reads as a satisfying conclusion to the trilogy, so you don’t need to worry about cliffhangers!)
It’s cerebral and confidently written, with complex original characters that blend seamlessly into the universe, and a lovely slow burn to Derek and Stiles’ relationship. It also gets better and better as the parts go on. If there was ever a fic in this fandom deserving of more love, this is it. Let’s make a difference!
Lily couldn’t fall asleep, her eyes were still shining from all the beautiful things she has seen tonight. Her first wizard Halloween… She was going to remember it for years. A huge smile covered her face as she recreated, in secret, every minute of the night. The ghosts. The feast. The joy. The laugh. Tomorrow she’ll write it all to her parents. Finally, she drifted to sleep, exhaustion taking over even with her best attempts to fight it.
- October 31st, 1972 -
Lily was angry when she went to bed. Everything was ruined. Her favorite day of the year. Ruined. For some idiots’ amusement. Who could think that an explosion of pumpkin juice in the Great Hall was a good idea? Who? The Marauders of course. Potter of course. They earned their detention all right. Stupid boys and stupid Potter and stupid Potter’s comments about her needing to have fun for once. She would have had fun if not covered in pumpkin juice. Stupid Potter. Sleep took her as she cursed his name once more.
- October 31st, 1973 -
If Lily could have stayed in Hogsmeade forever she would have. This first trip to the small village had been almost as good as the first time her feet walked the Hogwarts’ ground. She first went to Honeydukes with Marlene who heard about it from her cousins and dreamed to go since she was five. The girls hadn’t been disappointed a bit. Then they simply walked through the streets of Hogsmeade and stopped at each shop that seemed interesting. Then Lily joined Severus at the Three Broomsticks. They talked for hours before moving back to the castle. It had been so simple but so great. Lily couldn’t wait for the next trip there. That night all the girls of the dormitory talked and talked about how great the place was while eating all the sweets they bought. The excitement slowly quieted down and the girls felt asleep one by one. Lily probably was the last one to but the last thought she remembered was how lucky she was to live in this amazing world, like the ones she had dreamed about when she was little. She was smiling when she fell asleep.
- October 31st, 1974 -
They didn’t exactly know how, but all the fourth years Gryffindors found themselves in the common room after the feast that night. They all get along well and they all loved Halloween so it seemed natural to continue their celebration. Even if it only involved some sweets from Honeydukes and tales of ridiculous but so funny stories. James was in the middle of telling one and he talked with his hands, all his body was animated. He was laughing before telling the good parts and his laugh was infectious. The boys were laughing at him and the girls were laughing fondly. Lily was somewhat mesmerized by the boy. She couldn’t look away from him, the way he really got into his story, the way his hands moved telling the story on their own way too, the way his eyes were bright, with laugh in them, the way his lips moved perfectly when he talked. Lily was in her own world for a moment and when she went to bed, she dreamed about his eyes and lips.
- October 31st, 1975 -
Lily wasn’t sure how the Marauders managed to bring butterbeer and firewhiskey back into the castle but she couldn’t care any less. The Gryffindors threw an after-feast Halloween party this year and she was having fun. She probably had drunk a little too much butterbeer but it was fifth year and she was a prefect and teachers already drowned them into homework. She could have a night off. Just one night off. She felt more than she saw James approached her. All right, Evans? And she swore she could hear his smirk in his voice. Peachy. And she giggled. And she saw James’ smirk turned into a real, bright smile. She was very warm suddenly and when she locked her eyes on his, she smiled back, all teeth.
- October 31st, 1976 -
The feast had ended and Lily was trying to make her cries unnoticed. Hiding in an empty classroom she was hoping nobody would come. But of course her wishes couldn’t be respected. Of course one James Potter would find her and come to her. She tried to wipe her tears but she reazlized that it was useless, he had already noticed she was crying. Never in her life she heard him speak with such a gentle and soft voice. Are you okay, Lily? Do you need anything? Please tell me how I can help you. He had settle down next to her and made an awkward attempt to confort her rubbing his thumb on her shoulder. She leaned her head on his shoulder, whispering through her tears that Severus Snape was a real idiot. He didn’t respond and she was glad. He just hugged her on the side and let her cry. They finally went back to the dormitories. Before climbing the stairs, Lily pressed her lips against his cheek, a silent thank you.
- October 31st, 1977 -
Her heart was racing and she couldn’t sleep. She still had butterflies in her stomach, she was both nervous and perfectly peaceful. The novelty of everything still affected her. She took a deep breath to calm her heart, she repositionned herself so she was in a more confortable position. The blanket was lift then and James joined her on the bed. She shifted, they were both on their side, looking at each other. James wore a small and calm smile and he was looking at her with such adoring eyes that all nervousness left Lily’s body. She leaned, still a bit unsure, and pecked his lips. James’ hand immediately cupped her cheek to keep her there a little longer and she sighed against his lips. Everything was still very new but everything was wompletely worth it. She opened her eyes when the kiss ended and smiled at James. He whispered a soft ‘goodnight Lily’, she rested her head on his chest and his hand found her waist. She never slept as well as that night.
- October 31st, 1978 -
Before Lily could fall asleep, James was knocking on her window. Of course she let him in. It was her last night in her childhood room. It was her last night in her house, her home, for she was to leave the next morning, finally beginning auror training. But she got used to sleep in James’ arms and she had missed it. When he showed up at her window, she opened it in hurry and kissed him immediately. She told him to be quiet, her parents were sleeping in the room next to hers. They just went to bed, side by side, legs tangled, holding hands, starring into each other’s eyes. They smiled as they drifted to sleep.
- October 31st, 1979 -
Lily didn’t fall asleep. She didn’t try to. She was waiting for James. She was waiting. She paced, looking at the clock every few minutes, worry only increasing with each of them passing. She cried too. Because she was afraid. Because she was tired. Because she just wanted to hold him in her arms, make sure he was okay and with her. He came back at 6 am the next day, looking more exhausted than Lily has ever seen him. She threw herself in his arms and tightened her embrace as much as she could. He ran a hand through her hair, softly murmuring words of reassurance. They fell into the sofa and spent a day there just hugging each other, glad to be okay.
- October 31st, 1980 -
Lily found sleep in a minute that night. It was cold and her blanket was warm. Her husband next to her was sleeping already when she went to bed. It was both his warmth and his soft snoring that drew her to sleep. She was asleep in a minute, fully aware that their little boy was going to wake them up in a few hours. Already far into torpor, she snuggled up to James, his arms instinctively wrapped aroung her and put her closer. She signed in contentment. Life was hard but life was also beautiful. She was happy.
- October 31st, 1981 -
She saw a green light that night and she didn’t exactly fall asleep. Lily just fell, like her husband before her.