The Hands of a Healer by Lazy Neutrino
Summary: She has no children, and thousands of children. Drabble, 926 Words.
Why You Should Care: Because the teacher and student relationship between Pomona Sprout and Severus Snape is rich in layers, and Sprout’s sadness at the path Snape chose is palpable. The writing is top-notch, and Sprout comes alive. It’s wonderful to see Sprout interact with a student other than Neville.
Why You Might Not Care: The first phrase about Frank Longbottom is not as seamlessly tied into the others as I would have liked. The lead-in works, but I think lingers in too many words and misdirects the piece, then never gets tied off. His connection to this story seems too device-like, even though the section is beautifully written and very powerful. It feels like there’s a link missing somewhere.
Five Moments of Doubt by Bagheera
Summary: Sprout, Neville, Luna, Ginny and Professor McGonagall during Deathly Hallows. Oneshot, 5,971 Words.
Why You Should Care: Snape is not, perhaps, the infallible master of deception he seems. He swore to Dumbledore he would do everything in his power to keep the students and the school safe, but it is a precarious line to walk, and at times he slips to one side or the other. This seems to me perfectly canon in every way, and the notion that McGonagall — especially — might have discovered him is no surprise. Snape tells McGonagall “I am exactly what you think I am” and means it; he has played the game so long that he is what he must be, both Dumbledore’s man and Voldemort’s man.
Why You Might Not Care: Experience these moments of doubt with these characters as you experienced your own while reading, and know the uneasy feeling that things might go either way even though you already know the outcome. This fic is well written, astute, and with thoughtful and accurate canon characters. I encourage you not to overlook it.