The moment Lily ducked out of the attic, James turned to him with a gaze so earnest that Severus gripped the edge of his chair and glared back. “I was a dick to you, in Hogwarts,” James said.
“Um,” said Severus and then frowned at himself. He detested filler words. But maybe this was a special occasion.
“I’m sorry,” said James. “You’ve got perfect right to hate me, but I’d like it if we could be friends.”
Severus gripped his chair harder. He considered this. James–was the sky purple? were all the pig-flying spells all over England failing for one shining moment? was his mother’s basement freezing over?–waited for him to find his words. “It would make certain things simpler,” Severus managed.
–a life of smoke and silvered glass by dirgewithoutmusic / ink-splotch