In the words of the great American novelist William Faulkner, "The past is not dead. It isn't even past." In other words, the past lives on in the present. It shapes every minute of our lives. And this continuation is utterly apparent in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Professor Snape and Sirius are so unable to let go of their school rivalries that they can scarcely stand to look at each other, let alone work together. Sirius hates to be reminded of his childhood so much that he takes out his frustration on the house elf Kreacher, with disastrous results. On the more positive side, Harry's parents died many years before, but the protection of Harry's mother's blood endures to this day. The sacrifice of her life was so powerfully driven by love that it is still affecting Harry fourteen years later. Lily Potter may have died, but in some sense she is still part of Harry's present existence. If the past has a constant effect on the everyday lived experiences of the characters, how can we even call it "past"?