Lily had hung up posters around her town. She had performed a simple charm so no one but people seeking a babysitter would actually see them. And then a charm so only witches and wizards could see the little note at the bottom saying that she accepted owls too. Lily was quit pleased with herself. Well, there was one slight problem.
No one had called yet. She hadn’t gotten a phone call or an owl asking for her to baby-sit. Maybe she was being impatient. Yeah. That was probably it. It had only been three days.
Just then, Petunia came into the living room and stretched a claw-like hand towards the phone. Lily grabbed the phone before her sister could.
“What are you doing?” Lily asked. Petunia raised her eyebrows at her sister.
“I was going to call my boyfriend,” she said.
“Hippo’s aren’t allowed to use phones Petunia,” Lily said as if she were trying to explain this to a two year old. She had met her ‘boyfriend’ and Lily couldn’t believe his size.
“Shut up,” Petunia snapped and reached for the phone in Lily’s hand, “Give me the damn phone!”
“No!” Lily yelled, “What if someone calls who needs me to baby-sit and I miss their call because you’re talking to your boyfriend?”
“Not my problem,” Petunia replied as she reached for the phone again. Lily jumped over the back of the couch to get away from her sister.
“Now Pat, you are my favorite big sister but I can’t let you use the phone,” she said in mock sweetness. Petunia rolled her eyes.
“I’m your only big sister and STOP calling me ‘Pat’”. Lily laughed. Then an owl swooped into the room. Petunia shrieked and ran from the room. Lily put the phone back on the side table and untied the letter form the owl’s leg. She didn’t recognize the owl so she figured it was probably someone who needed a babysitter. Either that or her best friend Erin got a new owl. Inside the letter read:
Dear Lily Evans,
My husband and I have seen your poster for babysitting. We need a babysitter this Saturday night. We would like to hire you to baby-sit our three year old daughter, Jackie. We are willing to pay five galleons an hour. Please send your reply with the owl that came to you.
Howard and Jennifer Potter
Potter? Lily thought. It couldn’t be James Potter’s family. There were a lot of people named ‘Potter’. What were the chances that the Potter family who needs a babysitter was the family of the boy she hated? Lily decided that it couldn’t be the same Potter and pushed the thought out of her mind.
At the bottom was the address. Lily quickly wrote back saying that she would baby-sit and would be there at 6:00 if that was a good time for them. She went up to her room, debating on telling her sister that she could use the phone now but decided against it.
That Saturday, Lily showed up at the given address. She knocked and waited. A woman with black hair and brown eyes answered the door.
Before Lily had a chance to say anything, the woman said, “You must be Lily.” Lily nodded and held out her hand to shake the woman’s who identified herself as Jennifer Potter. She gestured Lily inside.
Lily walked in. The house wasn’t huge but it was bigger than Lily’s two story house. Their house was three stories. When Lily walked in, she was standing in the foyer. Mrs. Potter told her she could hang her coat up on the coat rack and follow her. Lily did as she was told. She followed Mrs. Potter into a room that reminded Lily greatly of the Gryffindor common room. Then they went through another door into a kitchen. The kitchen was big. It was more of a dining room/kitchen. There was a little girl sitting at the table eating and a man standing by the counter. He looked up when they walked in.
“Ah. You must be Miss Evans,” he said, shaking Lily’s hand.
“Hello,” Lily said.
“This is Jackie,” Mrs. Potter said kindly, walking up to the little girl. “She goes to bed at 8:30. Make sure you read to her before she goes to bed. There aren’t very many rules. Just make sure she doesn’t get into trouble and she’s not allowed outside after dark.” Lily nodded.
“We’ll be back around 10 or 11,” Mr. Potter told Lily. He checked his watch and said to Mrs. Potter, “We had better be leaving Jen.”
“Alright,” she said and then turned to tell Lily one more thing. “Our son will be leaving soon. He’s upstairs right now. He will show you around before he leaves. We really do have to go.”
“Ok,” Lily said. “Bed at 8:30, no going out after dark, read to her before she goes to bed and make sure she doesn’t get into any trouble,” Lily repeated. She found that parents tend to be less nervous if they know you’re listening. Mr. Potter smiled and nodded.
“Are you leaving?” Jackie asked. Lily thought she was so cute.
“Just for a little while honey. When your wake up in the morning, we’ll be here. Lily’s going to watch you tonight,” Mrs. Potter explained. Jackie looked a little sad and then said, “Okay. I’m going to go see Jamie.”
Lily looked at the little girl quickly. Jamie. James. Uh-oh. Lily tried to convince herself that it wasn’t the same person. James was a very common name as well as Potter. There must have been tons of wizards called James Potter. She didn’t even know if James was his name. It could just be Jamie. Lily still felt nervous.
“Great idea Jackie,” Mrs. Potter said, “You can introduce Lily to your big brother.” She looked at Lily and smiled. Lily smiled back.
“Well, we’re off,” Mr. Potter said “Bye Jackie.” Mr. and Mrs. Potter kissed Jackie on the head and apperated.
“I’d love to meet your brother,” Lily said sweetly to Jackie. Jackie took Lily’s hand and led her upstairs. They stopped in front of a door with a flashing sign that said KEEP OUT. Lily rolled her eyes. Typical teenager. Jackie knocked and guess who answered. James Potter.
“Evans?” he said and smiled. Lily felt like hitting her head on the door frame and possibly knocking herself out but figured she shouldn’t do that in front of a three year old.
“No silly,” Jackie said. “This is Lily.” Then she giggled.
“Oh. I’m sorry Jackie,” James said, picking up his sister. It was cute when he held little kids. No. This is Potter. He’s never cute. Lily thought to herself. “You’re babysitting my little sister?” he asked.
“Yes and for me to do that, you have to be gone. Aren’t you going somewhere?” Lily asked, trying not to sound too rude.
“Well I was but now I’m having second thoughts,” James said. Lily sighed.
“Don’t let me keep you from your friends Potter,” Lily mumbled through clenched teeth. James laughed.
“Ever heard the saying like brother like sister?”
Lily shook her head. “No.”
James smiled. “I’m gonna stay. Just pretend I’m not here.” Lily didn’t like the grin he had on his face.