“I don’t know why someone didn’t rescue 你 from the Quidditch match. It looks like someone was screwing around with your broom. It’s easy to counter silly spells like that.”
    Harry thought a moment. “But why would someone mess up my broom…?”
    “You’ve obviously made an enemy out of someone.” Severus shrugged.
    “…maybe it was Draco.”
    “Perhaps. In any case, I’m glad you’re dead. I’ve never had a friend before.”
    “Wait…” Harry hesitated, “So you’ve been alone… all this time… with no one…”
    “Thestrals are fun, but they don’t make good company. Anyway, I’ve got to 显示 你 something. Come on.”
    They walked along the cold floors, and past the ghosts and students. “Why can’t ghosts see us?”
    “We’re dead, Harry, but I don’t think we’re ghosts.”
    “Then what do 你 suppose we are?”
    “I can’t really say. For all I know, we’re the only ones this has ever happened to.”
    “Severus, do 你 think…?”
    Harry shook his head. “Nevermind.”
    “Here we are.” The young teenager stepped into a small room. And there was a certain glint in Severus’s eyes, so curious that Harry followed him in. There, inside, was a mirror of the most ordinary sort.
    “I used to sit for hours and hours,” Severus said, a strange grin at his face, “just looking into this mirror. Just look.”
    Harry did so, and he did not find his reflection, but he did.
    He was old, and tired and happy looking, with three young children around him. And a woman, just as worn and joyful, with red hair and freckles, was smiling at them.
    “That’s Ginny!” Harry scrunched his face. “We had children!”
    “You would have. This shows what happens if 你 had stayed alive.”
    “…that’s amazing!” Harry grinned and gasped.
    “Isn’t it? But my image changed! When I had first died, I hardly saw anything in the mirror. But I grew old, and I saw 你 a few times, and I was quite sad and hateful, although I can’t imagine why.”
    Harry couldn’t either. His friend was kind, though a little odd at times.
    “But then, once everyone I knew had grown and gotten out of Hogwarts and their names were only empty words to me, as I was so separated from them—the image changed. I was married, and was 老友记 with the ones I once despised.”
    “Who did 你 hate so much?”
    “Well, I’m glad their only names now, but your father was a snotwad when I knew him.” Harry’s eyes opened wide. Severus acted as though they were talking about the weather, “He hated me as soon as he met me. Played a lot of pranks and got himself into trouble. And was 老友记 with my murderer.”
    Harry shook his head. “…really?”
    “Yes. 你 don’t believe me?”
    “…I suppose I do.”
    “I’m not trying to offend you. It would be so depressing, wouldn’t it, to continue in silence because we got into a fight? Silence can drive 你 into madness, 你 know. I fell into the brink once 或者 twice.”
    “No, I believe you…” Harry hesitated. “What else about my father? Why was he so terrible?”
    “I suppose I was a bit the same as him when I was alive, except I was smarter. But he had friends, and we both loved your mother—quite odd, she’s nothing but a name now, Lily Evans, quite a pretty name, but just a name.”
    “You fancied my mom?”
    “Might have kissed her once.”
    “That’s gross! Besides, I thought you’d been dead for a hundred years!”
    Severus laughed. “No, I’m thirty five to date. But what was I going to tell you… ah, yes! Your father cried the most at my funeral.”
    “Thought, if he had been there, he could have saved me. So he felt guilty.”
    “But I thought the werewolf…”
    “He felt horrible, as well! But it’s quite odd, James was the most grieved. I thought surely your mother would be the worst. Perhaps she was, in her own way.” Severus stopped talking abruptly.
    The image changed in the mirror, until there was nothing but the boys’ reflections left, except that they were exactly dead.
    Severus sighed. “Silence is so maddening, indeed!”