Fandom: Harry Potter
Categories: kid!fic, future!fic
Warnings: not sure when it was written, but definitely not canon compliant for book seven and probably not compliant for book six.
Author on LJ: tiranog
Author Website: http://tiranog.southroad.com/
Several years after Voldemort's defeat, Harry, Hermione, and Ron (and Neville and Blaise) are all teaching at Hogwarts, as is Snape. Harry (and, to a lesser extent, Severus) wants to get over the past and befriend the potions master, but neither of them can get over their respective horrific childhoods and the personal animosity between them during Harry's time as a Hogwarts student. Step in Dumbledore (via a dream sequence), who turns them both into seven-year-olds, with only the memories that each of them had when they were seven. As the adult teachers scramble to figure out exactly what happened and reverse the spell, Harry and Severus slowly become friends and learn how wonderful a happy childhood can be.
I should not like this story. It's kidfic! It's pre-slash! It features Dumbledore meddling from beyond the grave! And yet, it's perfect. Unlike most of Tira's stories, which feature gobs of relationship melodrama (defintely not a bad thing), A Nick in Time is full of the small dramas of real life, of childhood, and of parenting. The story is tightly plotted and concisely written, and her seven-year-old Severus is quite possibly the most awesome seven-year-old in the history of ever. Sweet, poignant, and lovely, this is Tira's best work to date.
Note: there is a sequel (called Growing Pains) that continues the story of adult Harry and Severus and their developing relationship. I'm including the link below, but I'm not reccing the story itself for a few reasons. For one, Tira's adult Snape is much less awesome than her seven-year-old Snape. For another, after the beautifully precise writing she used in A Nick in Time, Growing Pains seems bloated and (I can't believe I'm typing this) too long. It's very much in the style of her other stories, however, so if those appeal to you, you should enjoy this fic as well.
A Nick in Time