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Chapter 20 : Twenty: Make a Scene
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There, there, baby, It’s just text book stuff
It’s in the ABC of growing up.
Now, now, darlin’, Oh don’t lose your head
'Cause none of us were angels
And you know I love you, yeah.
-Speeding Cars, Imogen Heap
The next few weeks were . . . different. To put it plainly. I can’t really think of a word to describe them. I mean, being with James Potter . . . it was something I’d often watched from an outside perspective during first to fourth year, but had only experienced firsthand once and well – we saw how that turned out. It was nice, though. James walked with me between lessons sometimes, and it was easy to talk to him. We stayed up talking in the common room as well, even after everyone else had gone to sleep. Absolutely everyone in the school was talking about us. Apparently a lot of people had bets on that we would get together… or at least suspected that it might happen. How could I have been so oblivious? Guys kept shouting “kiss her then!” in the corridors to James… he just laughed. We didn’t really kiss much in public. We knew everyone would be watching us and besides, it would be weird.
Dorcas and I were walking back to the common room after Potions when Amos Diggory came over to us. I thought nothing of it, imagining he probably wanted to talk to Dorcas. We were really good friends now – and to think that if Sirius hadn’t brought us together I might never have gotten to know her.
“Hey Lily, how’s it going?” Amos asked, smiling as he stopped in front of us. Dorcas and I came to an abrupt halt.
“Um, Lilz, I’ll see you in the common room,” Dorcas excused herself, smiling secretively as she walked away. I gazed after her helplessly. I said I would meet James in the common room right after Potions – we didn’t sit anywhere near each other in that class anymore. I suddenly realised I hadn’t yet responded to Amos.
“Uh, Amos, hi!” I said, faking cheerfulness. I knew a lot of girls would be honoured to have THE Amos Diggory talking to them – the Hufflepuff golden boy – but I was in a rush. “What can I do for you?”
“Oh nothing, I just wanted to chat. How’ve you been?” Amos asked, and I walked with him over towards the grounds, rather reluctantly. So I didn’t have the guts to tell him to get lost. So what.
“Oh great thanks, you?” I replied conversationally.
“Yeah, can’t complain,” Amos replied. We were outside now, strolling along the path towards the black lake. “So I hear you and James Potter are together now?” You’re telling me. Who hadn’t heard?
“Yeah, we are,” I replied, unsure of where this conversation was headed. “Why?” I ventured.
“No reason,” he said nonchalantly. “So Marlene McKinnon, you’re friends with her aren’t you?” he asked. Boy, was he full of questions.
“Yep. She’s really nice,” I replied. By this time I was very confused. My feet crunched on the pebbles strewn across the shore. Amos reached down, picked one up and skipped it across the water.
“Can I ask you a favour?” Amos asked, suddenly turning to look at me. He was quite a bit taller than I was, so technically he was looking down at me.
“That depends what it is,” I replied cautiously.
“You couldn’t… help me get a date with Marlene, could you?” I felt relief sweep over me. As bigheaded as it sounds, I had seriously thought he was trying to make a move on me. Except now, there was a bigger problem.
“Oh, Amos . . .”
“Okay. You don’t want to. That’s fine,” Amos cut in. I laughed in spite of the situation. Amos Diggory was practically the most confident guy in Hogwarts – excluding the Marauders.
“No!” I laughed. “But, I’m afraid I can’t,” I continued sadly. “Marlene’s been going out with Remus Lupin since the masquerade ball.”
Amos’s face fell. He looked as if I’d just reached in and torn out his heart and I felt a wave of pity.
“I’m so sorry,” I said pitifully.
“That’s okay,” he replied, waving it off. “I hope she’s happy with him.”
I looked at him, an eyebrow raised. “Let’s go back to the castle,” I suggested, and Amos nodded. I led him, dejected, back to the castle. I felt so bad for him. We parted ways in the entrance hall and I made my way quickly up to the Gryffindor tower. I muttered “Jellyburger” and went inside; the room was empty. It was funny sharing a tower with James – it was like we were already married and living together. I sighed loudly and clunked my book bag down on the table. Something stirred beside the fireplace and James stood up.
“James!” I said happily. He half-smiled and walked over.
“Hey Lilz,” he greeted me. “Where have you been?” he followed up immediately, so quickly it shocked me.
“Oh – Amos Diggory wanted to talk about something, and I couldn’t turn him down,” I replied, smiling sweetly. I wrapped my arms around his neck.
“You couldn’t turn him down?” James asked unsurely. I laughed in confusion.
“No, I didn’t have the heart. Why are you being like this?” I asked kindly, trying not to sound like I thought he was mental. But he was acting particularly strange.
“What did he want to talk about?” James asked.
“James, you’re being paranoid,” I said firmly.
“What did he want to talk about?” James asked again, louder. He was scaring me slightly.
“James! Stop being like this!” I said, slightly scared. I dropped my arms from around his neck and took a small step back.
“What did he want? Why won’t you tell me?” James asked again, almost yelling. I felt tears brimming. My own boyfriend didn’t trust me?
“He wanted me to set him up with Marlene, James!” I yelled in reply. “That’s why I didn’t tell you! He didn’t know about her and Remus, but I knew you’d take any excuse to jump him!” The tears were threatening to spill, but I bit them back. James, who had been full of tension, relaxed slowly. I just looked at him.
“I’m sorry,” He mumbled, after a pause. I was still staring at him in fear and shock.
“You’re the one who cheated on ME, James,” I said icily. “If either of us has an excuse to be paranoid . . .”
“I’m so sorry,” he repeated quietly. “You didn’t show up and I saw you go down to the lake with Amos from the window . . . I’m sorry. I guess I’m just the jealous type.”
I sighed. “If this is the way it’s going to be, James, over the tiniest things . . .” I trailed off, placed my hands on my hips and stared offhandedly out of the window. “Maybe it isn’t going to work?” Even to my own ears the words sounded foreign and wrong. James looked at me – I wasn’t looking at him but I could feel his eyes boring into mine. I dared to glance at him. He looked horrified.
“Lily, I’m so sorry. Don’t even think about that . . . we’ve been together for weeks! I’ve never felt this way about anyone before, Lily . . .” I looked at him sympathetically.
“Give me time to think about it,” I replied, quietly. “This isn’t a break up. But you really scared me just now, James . . .” And I walked away. I didn’t know what I was doing. It was as if some other force had taken over me. But could I really be with a guy who was going to be this crazy over the smallest thing?
I didn’t even see him the rest of the night. At one in the morning, I was still lying in my bed, staring up at the canopy and trying to figure out what I was supposed to be accomplishing by thinking about it. I couldn’t even concentrate due to the fact that a loud voice in the back of my head was singing ‘Forgive him! Forgive him! Forgive him!’
So this is what it’s like to be me. Voices telling me in song what to do about my love life.
I slipped out of bed and crept across the room, in my pink shorts and vest, no slippers and no dressing gown. I closed the door quietly behind me, tiptoed down the stairs and crossed the shared common room. I knew James’ stairs didn’t collapse when girls climbed them like mine did for boys, but still I hesitated. This would be a serious breach of the rules and I was head girl. The voice sang louder than ever. Just to shut it up, I hurried up the staircase and quietly pushed the door open. James’ sole bed was beside the window in the otherwise quite small room. There was a bookcase by one wall with a desk covered in parchment and quills, James’ pride and joy – his broomstick – leaning against it.
James was sound asleep, curled up inside his covers facing me. I crept across the room. I tentatively lifted the covers and crawled in. James stirred and he opened his eyes.
“I’m sorry, James,” I whispered. He smiled sleepily and closed his eyes again. I snuggled up beside him and felt his warm arms embrace me. I rested my head on his chest. I could hear his heartbeat and its steady rhythm gradually put me to sleep.
The Great Hall was a flurry of activity at breakfast time. I stood in the doorway and watched as students hurried about, collecting and sharing letters, chatting, hugging, promising to write. For most it was time for the summer holidays; eight weeks of freedom before they had to return again. But for my friends and I it was the last day we would ever spend at Hogwarts before diving into the real world. Cliché as it was, I felt tears brimming in my eyes. Hogwarts; the place I had made the best friends I’d ever had, learned so much, and even met my soul mate. I desperately didn’t want to leave, even if it was school – it was my home.
I breathed out slowly, still standing in the doorway. The tears weren’t going to fall; I wasn’t that weak, but they obscured my vision and made me feel miserable. I felt an arm snake around my waist as a voice whispered “You okay?” I rested my head on the person’s shoulder and smiled up at my boyfriend, James, through the tears.
“Never been better,” I replied, somewhat sarcastically. James rested his head on the top of mine.
“Don’t worry, Lily, it’s going to be okay,” he assured me. “We’ll be okay, as long as we’re together.” I smiled. I couldn’t believe I’d spent so long hating James – well, avoiding is a better word. He was perfect.
“Aww, Lily!” said a high voice, Dorcas appeared beside James, who jumped back as she enveloped me in a hug. “Lily, it’s okay, we’re going to all stay together even when we’ve left school.” Despite her assurances I had a niggling feeling we might all lose touch. My parents never hung out with their school friends. Why would we be any different?
“Dory, why does she get all the love?” said a deep voice. Dorcas laughed and let me go, spun round and wrapped her arms instead around her own boyfriend, Sirius. He looked shocked at the vigour with which she did this for a moment, but then hugged her back tightly. Remus and Marlene came over from the Gryffindor table where they had been eating lunch together, and joined our little circle of love.
“No one told us there would be a rendezvous!” said Jacob in a fake outraged voice as he and Bliss turned up from the entrance hall. I laughed.
“Almost everyone’s here,” I said tearfully.
“What, you mean Jazz?” James asked thoughtfully.
“I was actually referring to Peter,” I replied with a laugh. “Has anyone seen him recently?” Sirius, James and Remus exchanged anxious looks.
“I hope he’s alright,” Remus said worriedly. “Despite his many faults, I’m quite attached to the little guy.”
“Remember how we first met him? Sirius pulled him into a competition for Lily to pick the guy she would most like to go out with,” James laughed. Everyone found this funny.
“He never left our side after that,” Sirius added wistfully.
“Look at us! All nostalgic already. We should be enjoying our last day!” Bliss said, a broad smile on her face.
“Uhh, do you mind? You’re blocking the doorway,” said an annoyed voice behind us, and there were several murmurs of agreement. We turned around to find quite a large, irritated looking crowd gathered behind us and we moved obligingly out of the way, laughing.
“Good times,” James said. No one quite knew what to say.
After breakfast there was a short speech by the headmaster and we got into the thestral-pulled carriages (Hogwarts: A History). At Hogsmeade station we packed our luggage into the train and found a compartment. James, Remus and I had to go to the Prefects meeting an hour into the journey, and then patrol the corridors for a while before we could go and be more nostalgic with our friends. But eventually we got back there, reminisced some more, and before we knew it we were at King’s Cross. As soon as the train had ground to a halt I felt extremely reluctant to get off.
“Lily, come on . . .” James coaxed. I stuck my tongue out at him childishly.
“I am not getting off this train,” I said defiantly. James sighed.
“They won’t let you back at Hogwarts Lily, you’ll be too old!” he replied, pretending to take me seriously. I smiled.
“Lily, come on, we want to go . . .” Marlene whined. James grinned at her and then leaned down and whispered something in my ear.
“If you get off, I’ll give you a present.” My eyes brightened.
“A present?” I repeated hopefully. He nodded. I took hold of his hand as he led me off the train, our friends sniggering secretively behind us on the way out. I looked at them, bewildered, as we climbed off the train and into the crowd. However, as soon as we were in the centre of the platform, James stopped dead and turned to me, grinning.
“What are you doing?” I whispered hurriedly, as our friends gathered around us.
“Lily Evans!” James bellowed, making the platform fall considerably quiet.
“What are you doing?” I repeated, hoarsely, aware that the eyes of most of the people on the platform were on me.
“I have a question to ask you,” James continued, a little bit quieter before as everyone could hear him anyway, the platform was so quiet. My heart began to race. Surely he wasn’t going to do what I thought he was going to – in the middle of a busy platform? James sank down onto one knee and the crowd gasped and began to mutter. I looked around anxiously. All my friends had smug smiles plastered on their faces, as if they knew what was about to happen. I shot looks like daggers at them.
“Lily Evans,” James said again, quietly – but it seemed loud in the silence. Sirius went “Oh!” and hurried over to James with a box. James took it with a laugh and Sirius took his place back in the crowd.
“Lily Evans, will you marry me?” James asked, flipping the lid of the box open to reveal a beautiful silver ring with a sparkling, clear diamond in it. I gasped. I felt giddy. I didn’t know what to say. We’d been going out for a couple months short of a year. Was it long enough? Would we be happy together? We had only left school a few hours ago! What if-?
Bliss nudged me in the back. I snapped back to reality. James was still looking at me with a stupid, giddy grin on his face.
“I – um, I-” I paused. I what? I wasn’t even sure. James’ smile was starting to fade and the murmurs of the crowd were growing louder. For once, I decided to let my impulsivity take over and let my heart make the decision for me, instead of that stupid mind of mine which was always being rational and predictable.
“Yes!” I called loudly. “Yes, James Potter, I will marry you!” James grinned broadly, jumped up and threw his arms around me. I heard later that he threw the box over his shoulder in his happiness and Sirius had to dive forwards to catch it. But all I could think about right then was James, me and James, future Mr and Mrs Potter. James’ lips found mine and we were kissing in front of everyone, but we didn’t care. I could hear everyone laughing and cheering and wolf-whistling, but I didn’t care. James, who had apparently taken the ring out of its box before he threw it away, pulled away and slipped the ring over my finger. I smiled at him and threw my arms around him again. He lifted me up into the air and spun me around.
“James Potter,” I whispered.
“Yes, Lily Evans-Potter?” he whispered in reply.
“You always have to make a scene.”
A/N: It's over!! (apart from the epilogue). It was short (but sweet, I like to think) and I hope you enjoyed it. Dont forget to review, if you are a silent reader please leave just one review so I can appreciate you! *squee!*
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