|bohemianspirit (bohemianspirit) wrote in snape_after_dh,|
@ 2007-11-02 13:54:00
FIC: Not Yet FUBAR
Title: Not Yet FUBAR
Type: Fiction (Gen, Humor, and a bit of Love)
Length: Short Story
Characters: Severus, Goddess, and an Angel
Rating: PG-13, for language
Summary: After giving Severus a chance to get settled into his heavenly home, Goddess confers with him about the work She would like him to do in the afterlife.
Warnings: Unconventional and mildly irreverent handling of religious concepts may possibly offend some people. The Deity treating Severus Snape with respect and love may possibly offend others.
Note: Thanks to the moderators of snape_after_dh for extending the deadline for posting, I offer you the following bonus story, not originally planned... unless, perhaps, it was Ordained On High... ;-)
Not Yet FUBAR
"Well. Now what?"
Severus looked around for a convenient cloud upon which to perch. Unfortunately, the only clouds to be had in heaven were up in the sky, as they'd been on earth. So, as on earth, he sat on the ground, beneath a tree in full leaf, and he pondered. But scarcely had he begun to ponder when he received a summons. So, rising, he brushed off stray leaves of grass and resumed his pondering while he went to answer the summons.
The afterlife had been full of surprises. The first surprise, a rather pleasant one, had been that he had not been cast into a Lake of Fire upon his arrival. That had been followed with the second surprise, the discovery that there was no Lake of Fire, unless someone chose to bring one over with them. The Deity was not in the business of tormenting people for their fuckups; people were in the business of tormenting themselves. Upon that realization, Severus had quickly decided that he'd had enough of torment, whether of himself or of anyone else, and had expressed the hope that the afterlife might rather be a place where torments ceased and healing began.
Ask, and it shall be given.
Top on his list, of course, had been to talk to Lily, make amends. And that had been the third surprise: He'd had his talk, and it had gone remarkably well for both of them, but in the course of talking to Lily it became sadly clear to him that the idea of Lily had been rather more inspiring than the actual person of Lily. He didn't blame her, nor feel angry at himself about having devoted most of his mortal life to an iconic idealization of a shallow chit. Mainly, he felt disappointed. Let down. A vague, dull ache of regret that he'd wasted his life chasing an illusion instead of letting go of the illusion and doing something useful with his life.
Then again, he further reflected, in chasing his illusion he had ended up doing something useful--several somethings that had been worthwhile. And he had loved. Looking back, he realized, there had been many he'd loved, hiding it from himself under the cloaks of hatred, irritation, and indifference.
So it hadn't been a complete fuckup, his life.
Not that he could do anything to change what had been, but still, Severus felt better as he walked into the interview with the One who had called him.
"Good day, Madam," he said, for lack of a better greeting.
"Good day, Severus," said Goddess, Her eyes full of light and warmth.
For several moments Severus just stood, relishing that light and warmth, then he recalled himself. "You wished to see me, Madam?"
"I did, Severus." Goddess smiled at him. "Now that you've had opportunity to settle in and make the rounds, it's time to discuss what you'll be doing with your eternity."
Severus blinked. "Doing?"
"Yes, doing. Something constructive. Something to keep you occupied, challenged. Did you really think we all just sit around perched on clouds doing nothing?"
Well, now that She mentioned it--
"This is heaven, Severus, not hell."
She winked. And it made him smile.
"Very well," he said, drawing himself up and looking at Her steadily. "What would you have me do?"
"Well..." She pondered, as if She hadn't known from all eternity what She was about to say. "What I've got in mind is to assign you to the Department of Not Yet FUBAR."
He frowned. "FUBAR?"
"An American acronym," She explained. "It stands for Fucked Up Beyond All Repair."
The Deity had said fuck.
"There are, of course, those unfortunate ones who truly are damaged beyond repair while they remain on the other side of the Veil," Goddess went on, as if Anglo-Saxon words were of no more import to Her than any others. "But they are the concern of another department. I think you, Severus, will do better to focus your efforts on the ones who are not yet beyond repair: the ones who are told they are hopeless, who are continually belittled and denigrated and despised, the ones who are abandoned as lost before they've been given a chance to find themselves. In sum, the ones who are dismissed as FUBAR when they are in fact quite reparable--in some cases even capable of thriving, once given the opportunity and resources to do so."
This was all sounding oddly familiar...
"And what would I be doing, with--with these people?"
"Be present with them. Guard them and guide them. Give them strength, encouragement, hope. Be a bearer of My Love."
He couldn't help but arch an eyebrow, though he did stop short of a skeptical sneer.
"You are more than equal to the task, Severus," She softly said, looking deeply into his eyes.
Damn. She was one hell of a Legilimens.
Goddess smirked. "And from Whom do you think you got that talent?"
Severus inclined his head. "Of course, Madam." He straightened himself, and looked back into the eyes of Goddess.
"All right." Severus nodded his assent. "Show me what to do, where to begin."
Goddess looked over, beyond Severus; and he turned, and he saw that they were no longer alone--
That he had never been alone.
She looked nothing like Lily, this Angel, but he knew: This was his Angel. This was the reality after which he had been seeking; this the yearning upon which he'd pasted the image and name of Lily. This presence, this guardian, this--
She smiled at his whisper, and answered with a kiss, a single, gentle kiss.
Because, after all, they had all of eternity to go as far as they wished to go.
"Come on," she said, taking his hand. "We have work to do."