Chapter 1 : Today is Where Your Book Begins
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Authoress’ Note- Since I started reading and writing fan-fiction three and a half years ago in November of 2002, I have always yearned to say that I was part of something great. I have always wanted to say that my story was one that not only followed the canon, but one that dispelled the traditional Mary Sue roles. I wanted something different, something memorable. I am hoping that this story is the culmination of over three years of learning and constructive criticism- I want this to be the most accurate Lily/James I have ever done. I want this to be the best story I have ever done. I hope it is. But only your reviews and time will tell.
Summary- Has Lily’s story ever been really told? A few times. Some close, some… not so close.
Lily is tempestuous. She’s stubborn. Her life is not perfect, and neither is she. This is the story of her 7th year, the year of her Head Girl-ship, a Heads position alongside James Potter, a mischievous miscreant with a passion for pranks (God I love alliteration). This is the story of Petunia’s marriage, a marriage that broke her family apart. This is the insight you never had. This is the untold story. This is unwritten.
Chapter 1: “Today is Where Your Book Begins”
“Oh, bloody hell. It w-won’t z-zip…” a redhead gasped, struggling for air in the stuffy bridal salon.
“Well, maybe if someone had laid off the cookies yesterday…” an unkind young woman insinuated from the bench, examining her nails disinterestedly, before happily settling on her favorite focal point- her diamond engagement ring.
“Petunia! You stop that at once! The dress must simply be the wrong size,” an older woman mediated tentatively, obviously the girls’ mother judging by her red hair and the eyes that were the same shape and color as Petunia’s. The mother sighed at her daughters’ squabbling, finally leaving the small room to find an attendant.
The moment the drapery swished closed, Petunia got up to examine the redhead critically. “I doubt it is, Lily. You’ve certainly gained weight this summer.”
“Thanks a lot, Petty,” Lily retorted snidely, before sitting down on the modeling stool, head in her hands, bra and back bare for the world to see…not that she remotely cared. Lily Evans was not the type of girl to obsess about her weight and appearance, make no mistake. But there was something about being surrounded by pink taffeta that could very well swallow you whole but yet stubbornly refused to accept your body by zipping that Lily found very insulting. What also stung was that Lily had to admit that there was a bit of truth to Petunia’s words.
She had gained a bit of weight over the holiday. Most of her body still looked evenly distributed, but she could feel it when she moved. A little jiggling that wasn’t there before, Lily thought disgustedly.
She could feel her eyes starting to prickle. I can’t believe I want to cry about this, Lily thought, ashamed. This is something I would expect Petunia to do, cry because she had gained a size. But me? I could be thinking about the NEWTs I have this year, what to wear to King’s Cross tomorrow, or even what I want to say to the Prefects during my first speech as Head Girl on the train…
She definitely had more important things to worry about.
You see, Lily Evans was not your typical seventeen-year-old. Lily was special. Lily was a witch.
Born to a non-magical family, the Evans had learned early to not question the mysterious occurrences that often accompanied Lily. They became used to the progress reports from her elementary school stating that the last thing her classmate could remember before beginning to do the two-step uncontrollably was Lily’s eyes focused intently on him because he had stole her Barbie doll. It was just how life was. Hair changed colors and people danced feverishly all the time, didn’t they? It could be a natural event, or so Lily’s parents reassured themselves.
Or maybe not, because on Lily’s eleventh birthday, an owl scratched at the window in broad daylight, proudly bearing a scroll that explained the past eleven years and inviting Lily to develop her talents elsewhere.
The elsewhere turned out to be Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, a magical boarding school up north.
For Lily, deciding to go to Hogwarts was actually a really difficult decision. Petunia, her snide sister two years older, had never fully forgiven her sister for being odd growing up. Lily had developed a reputation in elementary for being a “freak”, and consequently, most normal kids would not hang out with her. That reputation had occasionally stretched to include Petunia, who could not handle being ostracized. Petunia liked to feel popular and important, and heaven forbid anything that got in the way of her reckless social climbing.
Essentially, Petunia hated Lily because Lily made her unpopular. And as much as Petunia had to admit she would enjoy Lily being shipped off to boarding school, she was positive that Lily going to that school would only cause the weird incidences to become more frequent. That school would make Lily gain control over something that basically scared the living daylights out of her sister.
Lily’s parents were much more supportive of their daughter’s dreams and ambitions. They were the kind of parents that if their daughter wanted to be a stripper, they’d be at her debut, throwing cash. If their daughter wanted to be a man, they’d help pay for the operation. They supported faithfully and non-judgmentally, a fact Lily absolutely adored about them.
There were two days after the owl came that Lily sat in her bedroom, just thinking. Do I really want to wreck my relationship with Petunia further than it already is? Is this what I really want?
Soon enough though, she realized she was just kidding herself by delaying her answer. She had the chance to be different. She had the chance to stand out, to be something bigger than her provincial suburb and the tame desk job careers that often accompanied a life here. Lily was thankful for every little thing her parents had done to get her here, but she wanted something more.
And as she sent the owl back with the date she would be able to explore Diagon Alley with a magical chaperone, she knew her life would never be the same. Her sister would never forgive her, she knew that. Her family dynamic would always be a little different. And her future…well, that remained to be seen.
Mind finally coming back to the present, she turned to look in the three-way mirror.
She saw Petunia looking carefully through a bridal magazine in the corner, and then turned her attention to her reflection.
Lily’s auburn hair clashed terribly with the tight pink frock that was insistently hugging her new curves. Though it wouldn’t really zip, Lily had to admit that it looked pretty good on her body. If only Petty had picked a different bloody color, Lily thought sullenly.
Petunia was getting married over the Christmas break in a very pretentious affair quite worthy of the ego of her fiancé, in Lily’s opinion. Vernon Dursley, an heir to a huge drill firm called Grunnings, was not exactly the biggest charmer.
In short, Lily despised the guy.
But she had her reasons. Though he had initially been civil when they first met, mainly to make a decent impression on his girlfriend’s parents, Petunia had shortly “let it slip” where Lily really went during the long months she was away.
Absentmindedly twirling her hair around her finger, Lily had to admit that she had to credit Vernon Dursley…and Petunia, for that matter. Her sister had actually managed to find probably the only person on the face of the earth that had a worse reaction to magic than her own. They’re probably soul mates, Lily thought derisively. Figures that that’s the way the world would work.
A swish of the curtain room divider signaled her mother’s re-entrance, and Lily got up from the stool. Twirling irritably for the attendant, they began the long process of resizing Lily to order a new dress in time for the wedding.
“Oof!” Lily grunted dramatically, heaving her trunk out of the backseat of her parents’ old station wagon.
“I could have helped you with that, pumpkin!” her father said loudly from the driver’s seat, stepping out of the car with a jump to his step.
Lily turned beet red at the nickname. She was seventeen. She was around a bunch of her classmates. And now, as she struggled with her trunk full of books, she was hoping the ground would swallow her whole.
“Reginald! Don’t call Lily that!” her mother screeched just as loudly, getting out of the passenger seat. “We don’t want to embarrass her in front of all her little friends!”
“Her little freak friends,” Petunia added scathingly from the backseat, never bothering to leave the car. She hadn’t given her sister a hug, much less cared whether Lily was leaving, since Lily had accepted the offer from that school.
“Petunia!” her mother hissed warningly.
Her father hadn’t heard Petunia’s remark, and looked at his wife. “Aw, Martha! Don’t be so huffy! Lily isn’t embarrassed by how much her daddy loves her, are you, honey?”
Lily couldn’t help it, she cracked a grin. “Of course not, daddy.”
“See! Told you so,” Reginald told Martha smugly.
Martha looked exasperated and turned to Lily, smiling. “Wow. It’s your last year, sweetheart. I can’t believe it’s been six years already. You know how proud of you we are, don’t you?”
And Lily did. When she had gotten her Head Girl badge in the mail, her parents had practically died of excitement. They were almost more excited than she herself was, and she had been dreaming about it since first year!
“Yes, of course, Mum. Are you going to remember to write this year?” Lily asked her forgetful parent with a slight giggle.
Her sixth year was spent wondering what she had done wrong, why her parents suddenly didn’t have time to write to her, before finally borrowing her friend’s owl to find out. Apparently, they had somehow lost Lily’s owl, and couldn’t figure out what they had done with it. How they lost a living, breathing creature…well, that she didn’t know. When Lily got home over the holiday, however, she found the owl, and righted the situation.
“Of course!” Reginald boomed with a cheesy grin. “And um…the owl’s in your room, right?”
“Oh, Lord. Yes. Puck is on his stand in my bedroom. Feed him his pellets for me. I’ll never understand why you don’t just let me take him, though,” Lily protested irritably, hoisting her trunk onto a cart while she spoke.
“Well, in case we have something we really want to say to you, we’ll have him there. This way we don’t have to wait for you to write to us for us to write to you!” her mother patiently explained for the hundredth time.
“Right. Alright then, I’m going to be late. Kisses!” Lily demanded.
Her parents obediently came in for their respective hugs, kisses and “I love you”, their eyes beginning to well up with tears. Their daughter was growing up so fast.
“Petunia, aren’t you going to say goodbye to your sister?” Martha asked hopefully.
“Whatever. Bye,” was the closest Lily could hope for from her sister, and she quickly returned the sentiment, turning back to her parents.
Feeling her eyes prickling slightly, Lily quickly bid them farewell, steering her cart to the brick wall she would use to start her seventh year at Hogwarts.
Adjusting her green jumper, (far too warm for September, if you asked Lily…but her mother had insisted) she scanned the familiar hustle and bustle for familiar faces. There she is! Lily thought excitedly.
Her best friend’s shiny chestnut hair shimmered in the sunlight, fanning out proudly as the girl turned.
“Lily! Finally!” the girl said exasperatedly. “Your parents take forever just to say goodbye!”
“Tell me about it,” Lily said smiling, “but I love them for it, anyway. Even though my dad called me ‘pumpkin’ really loud…and I’m pretty sure Henry Wilkinson was passing right about then.”
“The hot Hufflepuff Quidditch captain? Wow. Well, should I call the convents to see if they’ve got any room or would you prefer to do the honors?” the girl replied with a laugh.
“Eh, I’ll take care of it, Edie. It’s not like I have much to do with all these Head Girl duties,” Lily said with grinned, flashing the badge in the girl’s direction.
Eduina Azevedo had been Lily’s best friend since first year when they met in their dorm. Eduina was not the traditional beauty. Proudly Portuguese, she had been born and raised in the Azores islands. With a farming father and magical mother, she had had a very interesting childhood. When she turned eleven she was accepted to several magical institutions, but her mother had insisted upon Hogwarts, where she herself had gone to school. So Eduina left her islands every year to go to school in rainy, dreary Britain.
“I heard! Congratulations, hot stuff! Do you know who the Head Boy is yet?” Eduina asked curiously.
“Not really sure. They really should start printing that in the letter, though. It would make sense. I should suggest that to McGonagall when we get back to the school. Are we ready to board, then?” Lily sighed, dragging her heavy trunk behind her as they slowly approached the scarlet steam engine.
“Absolutely. Got to have a good compartment and all that, not that I can tell the slightest bit of difference between the compartments, but I digress…” Eduina said softly in her slight accent as she heaved her own trunk.
The accent which had been so foreign to Lily when she had first met Eduina was barely noticeable to her now. After six years, she had even learned a bit of Portuguese from her best friend.
“Oh, I’m sure they’re different,” Lily replied with a breezy smile. “They probably have different curtains on the windows. Sadly though, I’ve got to be up with the Prefects and Head Boy. At least in the beginning of the ride. Hopefully I’ll be able to escape by midway, though.”
As it turns out, midway she was not able to escape. In fact, wrapping up the meeting in time for everyone to have adequate time to change into their robes proved to be a challenge for Lily. The Prefects seemed to have an awful lot to say today. Her Head companion also had not yet joined the party, she noticed irritably.
“Yeah, Wilkes and Nott! Barty Crouch just booked ‘em into Azkaban!” a sixth year Prefect from Ravenclaw, Joseph Gilroy, shouted enthusiastically.
“It was for a Death Eater raid in a town right next to mine,” a small voice said quietly from the corner of the compartment.
Most of the heads turned to see a petite girl, a fifth year Prefect from Gryffindor. Alice DuPont, if Lily remembered correctly.
Lily’s heart went out to the girl. She could tell someone very dear to her had been killed in the raid, she could see it in the dead look in the girls’ eyes. It was a look seen on many people around Hogwarts for the past few years. The burgeoning war in the magical world was very dangerous and hostile. Nobody knew where or who Voldemort and his cronies would strike down next. Everyday during the post, the Great Hall collectively held its breath, hoping for no more death.
But as Head Girl now, Lily felt a responsibility to ease the students’ minds. Their schooling shouldn’t be spent in this open fear.
“Hush, everyone,” she said softly, standing up from her bench. Clearing her throat, she began. “My name is Lily Evans, for those of you that don’t know me. I’m Head Girl, and I’m from Gryffindor. Another thing I would like you to know is that I’m Muggle-born. Let’s get that out front right now.”
She could feel looks of derision from the Slytherin prefects, but she noticed looks of admiration at her honesty from her own house and a few of the Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs.
“I tell you this because I want you to know that I understand and appreciate the dire circumstances of the magical world and the big threat of You-Know-Who. I worry for my family. I worry for each of yours. But one of my priorities this year, in my time as Head Girl, is to alleviate some of the fears that this threat brings. I want us to enjoy our year at school. I want this year at Hogwarts to be a good one. I think that if we all band together, it will be. But we need to set an example for the other students. I know it’s easy to slip into a conversation about the latest raids…it’s a big threat. But before you do, think how you would feel if you as a first year had stumbled across a person in a place of leadership saying those things. It enforces the fear. It makes it all the more real.”
She paused here to make sure she still commanded the attention of the room. Satisfied at the riveted expressions, she continued gingerly.
“That is why your first assignment of the semester is to only speak about You-Know-Who in locked rooms. No listeners but those you most trust. When out in the open, when in the hallways, please try to be optimistic. Help that first year. Talk about the benefits of taking Arithmancy. Frankly, I don’t give Merlin’s beard what you say, just try to make it positive. Would you all agree that this might be a good idea during a time like this?”
Nods followed the statement, and Lily saw a hand begin to rise. That of Alice DuPont.
“Yes, Alice?” she asked pleasantly.
“Sorry that this is off-topic, but…don’t we have a Head Boy this year?” Alice asked softly.
“Well, you’re quite right to ask, really…” Lily replied shakily. “I’m not actually sure who it is…or where he is, for that matter.”
A teenager with chocolate-brown hair poked his raven-haired friend hard with his wand.
“Remus, what do you think is wrong with him?” the boy asked aloud.
“Hmm?” a sandy-haired boy replied, dreamily examining the ceiling.
“Dear Merlin,” a pudgier fair-haired boy said from the corner. “What exploded, anyway, Sirius?”
Sirius Black grinned evilly as he spoke. “Well, since you asked, Peter…first it was innocent Exploding Snap…but James and I have been perfecting their ‘snap’ over summer while I lived with his family. Now they sort of make a mushroom cloud…”
Peter raised an eyebrow. “What does that have to do with James being unconscious and Remus daydreaming since we got on the train?”
“Well I think James was near it when it snapped, so to speak…and we’ve really perfected that ‘snap’, like I said. Moony, though. Um. I think I may have accidentally slipped a few Memory Modification Charms into the deck you two were playing with. Pity Remus lost…he’s the one that knows how to undo them…”
Peter Pettigrew rolled his watery-blue eyes. “And exactly what provoked you to put Memory Modification Charms…a very complicated spell I might add, into a deck of Exploding Snap?”
“Well,” Sirius began, “um…I don’t remember. Prongs here suggested it. It kind of sounded like fun. I think the idea was that if the deck exploded in the Common Room around Moony, McGonagall, or worse, around Lily Evans…we wouldn’t get in trouble because they wouldn’t be able to remember until someone set them right, you know?”
“Speaking of Lily Evans,” Peter said softly, “why do I feel like there’s something we’re forgetting about the duties these gits need to be doing?”
Sirius met his eyes frantically. “Lily will have a coronary. She’s been running the meeting without one of her Prefects and without her Head Boy, Wormtail!”
Peter’s eyes widened. “Dear Merlin. She must not know who the Head Boy is yet, that’s probably why she hasn’t come in here and knocked Prongs out herself for making a bad impression on the new Prefects.”
Sirius peered over James’ slumped body in response. “I guess I could try…Ennervate!”
James Potter sat up from the floor, stretching to get out the stiffness in his neck and back. Righting his crooked glasses, he looked around the compartment.
Peter looked at Sirius irritably. “Why didn’t that occur to you before, exactly? Like when you were creating the demented thing over summer?”
Sirius shot Peter a look of extreme exasperation. “The threat of Evans has a way of forcing me into action like nothing else, Wormtail.”
“Evans? Who said anything about her?” James asked all too quickly to be seen as impartial.
“Yes, we understand by now that you have a thing for her, Prongs. None of us do, since you’re jealously wondering. However, you will probably be castrated if you don’t make an appearance in that Heads compartment in the next oh…say...minute,” Sirius said casually, glancing at his watch.
“Bloody hell!” James groaned. “I missed the meeting! She’s gonna kill me!”
Quickly grabbing his wand out of his bag, he opened the door to the compartment and, dragging a dazed Remus behind him, headed for certain doom.
A/N- Hope you all liked it! Please review and let me know what you think of it so far!!!!