Thursday, April 23, 2015

TCWT Blog Chain: Letters to Ships

Yay, extra post! Not so yay, posting it super late again!

Once again I am participating in the TCWT blog chain and this month's prompt is AMAZING. It's "Write a letter to a fictional couple." Now, I may not talk about this on here a lot, but I... just... get to the point of using a lot of ellipses to indicate suffering from emotions when it comes to ships. "Ships" for those of you who don't know is short for "relationships" but it refers to fictional relationships. And I love fictional relationships.
The prompt has basically been wreaking havoc in my head for the last couple of days, as I tried to pick just one fictional couple to write about. Earlier today I thought I'd decided on writing two letters to two different ships (Andy and April from Parks and Rec, and Eleanor and Park from, uh, Eleanor and Park). Before that, it was between Romione and Percabeth. But then I thought, I'm being selfish. I'm not thinking about what would actually be interesting as a letter. None of those letters would be interesting, they would consist of "YOU GUYS! LOVE! PERFECT! I- DYING! I LOVE YOU ALL!" No. I need to do something different.

So naturally, I'm breaking the rules of the entire thing. It says to write a letter to a couple, but I'm going to write a letter to two characters who aren't actually a couple. And in fact, it's best for everyone that they are not a couple, even if one of them is obsessively in love with the other. That's right. I'm writing a letter to Severus Snape and Lily Evans-Potter.

Dear Snape and Lily,

You're welcome, Severus, for giving you an excuse to be in the same room with Lily again to read this. Lily, sorry about this. I just thought this would be a great thing to have on my blog. Thanks for like, giving birth to Harry and all that.

When I read about the relationship between the two of you, back when I was eleven, I was mainly shocked about Snape being a good guy after all. The twist was so impressive to me from a writer's point of view that I didn't care much about the romance aspect of it. (Looking back now, it was obvious, but I was eleven. Also, to be fair, Snape was such a jerk-face that it wasn't hard to believe that he was a pure cold-hearted Death Eater.)

Then, of course, I went through puberty. Snape, you might remember puberty fondly as the period of your life you spent the most time with your crush, Lily. But Lily, you might remember this time as the period in your life when you felt you were losing a good friend, Severus. He had seemed so kind, and yet he was spending all his time with a group of people who wanted to kill all Muggle-borns. Kill the group of people you were part of! And even though Severus seemed to care about you, he didn't stop hanging out with those people, even when you begged him. In fact, he seemed to hate all "Mudbloods" except for you.

"Uh- except for Lily!" you might be saying now, Severus. "That's romantic, isn't it? Even though all Mudbloods are scum, I still find it in my heart to be in love with Lily!" Romantic indeed. I thought so too, when I was thirteen. I thought that love meant being single-mindedly obsessed with someone, doing everything in your power to help them and only them, and only in the way you think you're helping them. It doesn't matter if what they really want is for you to save their son- no, the best thing would be to try and save only them at the expense of the child they love. And if they ever dare to fall in love with someone other than you? Why, blindly and irrationally hate that person, of course. No matter how good a person they are. In fact, hate that person so much that when a child who's unrelated to this whole business physically resembles him, emotionally abuse the crap out of that child. Yes. ROMANCE.

Of course, I was thirteen then. All thirteen-year-olds have some stupid opinions, and that was one of mine- that love is supposed to mean destroying your own life for the sake of helping ONLY the person you're in love with. I actually got over this perspective, however. I realized that love is supposed to have a positive effect on both people involved. That when you love someone and you realize that something you're doing is hurting them, that the beliefs you had about the group they belong to are bigoted and wrong- you change yourself. You look into yourself and have more love for everyone, not just for the girl you're obsessed with. That's kind of the point of love (and if you actually paid attention to Dumbledore during your chats with him later on, you'd know that, because this is what he thought)- to make the world a better place, because of caring about each other, because of seeing other people as fully realized humans.

But you didn't see Lily as a fully realized human. You saw Lily as a perfect angel, a thing to be fascinated with. So of course, you couldn't change yourself. You stayed stubbornly the same. You only ever switched sides because of the infatuation you could not shake yourself from. You will "always" be the same pure-blood supremacist, even when you're technically fighting for the rights of Muggle-borns. Love didn't change you, because you weren't really in love, you were infatuated with the first person to ever show you kindness. I do feel sorry for you because of that, but come on. Take a leaf out of Harry's book- he was abused the first ten years of his life, too, and yet he's still so full of love. (Not to victim blame. But like. You're not a romantic hero, Severus.)

Lily, sorry I've been lecturing Severus this entire time and neglecting you. You're great. You're not a perfect heroine of perfection as Severus thinks, but you're still pretty cool. If there's ever a miracle and they make a Marauders movie, I hope they don't screw up your role.

Snape, since I'm assuming this is being written to the two of you as you are both dead and in the afterlife or whatever, I know that you never change. And that sucks. And also, I hope Neville Longbottom punches you in the ghost-face when he dies. A thirteen-year-old child's biggest fear should NOT be the teacher he has to see almost every day. (Man, why did Dumbledore even hire you? But that's a whole other rant for another day.)

In conclusion: infatuation =/= love.



 [Side note to my mom who is probably trying to figure out how the "I realized" means this is symbolic of my own life: it's not. "I realized" this because I spend too much time analyzing Harry Potter.]

Yeah, so, I hope that wasn't too convoluted. I just have a lot of angry feelings about Severus Snape.

And now, for what I promised myself I would do so that I was able to get through this post: a ceremonial list of my ships.

Harry and Ginny, Ron and Hermione, Sirius and Remus, Fleur and Bill, James and Lily, Molly and Arthur, Percy and Annabeth, Frank and Hazel, Ben and Leslie, Andy and April, Ziri and Liraz, Eleanor and Park, Katniss and Peeta, September and Saturday, Puck and Sabrina, Zuzana and Mik, Tristran and Yvaine, Ned and Chuck, Wes and Rebecca, Bonnie and Asher, and just... so many more.

(You don't have to try and decipher where all those are from. I just needed to let that out.)

OK. And now I must "go to sleep" for the night (meaning "waste time on the Internet for another hour while pretending I'm getting ready for bed"). Thanks for reading.


P.S. Here's the rest of the blog chain participants if you'd like to read them:



    No really, thank you. I can't for the life of me understand the Snily shippers at all, and you basically summed up why in better words than I could say: he didn't love her, he was infatuated with her, he didn't love her, he abused their friendship, and he didn't love her, he never changed.

    *shakes head* James grew up. And that is good. Snape kind of never did.

  2. I agree with much of what you wrote but I disagree about one thing: Snape had valid reasons to hate James. James was horrid to him and never apologized. Then James died while they were on different sides of a war and they never got a chance to develop any kind of adult relationship. Is Snape emotionally stunted? Sure. Would he have been able to get over it if Lilli had lived and James one day bought him a butterbeer and apologized? Maybe. The real issue here is exactly what you pointed out: emotionally disturbed people cannot differentiate between mature love and adolescent infatuation gone wrong. Snape was abused before he came to Hogwarts, and for him, the school was not a safe haven, as it was for Harry. It was just a place where he continued to suffer. This is exactly how terrorists and social psychopaths are made. And as a society, it is certainly something to think about. It's very hard to stop child abuse/neglect, but eliminating peer- group bullying IS within our power and should be addressed better.

    And your comment to me was, of course, right on the money. Sorry. I know I am way too obsessed (kind of like Snape, really, huh?) Does the fact that I am really a good person deep inside count in my favor? :-)