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Once Again by Ink Laden Quill
Chapter 48 : The Magic of the Muggle Athletic Cup
 
Rating: 15+Chapter Reviews: 37


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Wow! Last chapter we hit nine HUNDRED reviews! *dies* You guys are so incredibly awesome!
Anyways, sorry for the wait. I’ve had limited computer time lately. Hope you like this one…

Disclaimer: Unfortunately, Harry Potter does not belong to me. If so…well, I’m not going to get into that. =]




ONE YEAR LATER

The next year that passed was full of catastrophe. Voldemort only got stronger and wizarding kind only gained fear.
The Order of the Phoenix was doing all it could to stop him, but their attempts were fruitless. Voldemort was thwarting all of their plans. The most they could do was hide those in danger.

Ever then, members were dropping like flies. The loss of Gideon and Fabian Prewett hit the Order hard, for the two brothers were very powerful wizards and had helped a lot in the war. Edgar Bones soon followed. He died alongside Caradoc Dearborn at an attack on the Ministry A couple months later Benjy Fenwick was found dead in his house, the green dark mark glittering in the air above the room.

Marlene McKinnon had gone to celebrate Christmas with her family. Lord Voldemort turned up at her home and murdered the entire family.

The losses suffered by the Order only drove them further into the ground.
Everything was spinning out of control…and there was nothing they could do to stop it.




Lily sat at the kitchen table of her home, cross-armed. Two tears trickled down her cheek, into the red hair that framed her face. As soon as they disappeared two more followed.

Two things had come for her in the post that day. The Daily Prophet, they got that every day. And a letter from Petunia Dursley. Lily hadn’t seen her sister since that fateful day at Petunia’s wedding reception. A few letters had been exchanged. The last arriving about a month ago, saying that Petunia and Vernon would be expecting a baby.

Though, the one in front of Lily this time didn’t carry as happy of news. According to Petunia, someone had planted a bomb in the Evans household. The explosion had destroyed the house…and destroyed the elderly couple that was living inside.

It only made matters worse when Lily opened the Daily Prophet and found that Voldemort had staged another attack on a house in the very neighborhood Lily’s parents lived. She knew that it was Voldemort who had done it, done it to hurt Lily. Or was it a random muggle attack? Somehow, Lily doubted this.

And now that she knew Voldemort had been behind the murder of her parents, she could not bring herself to tell Petunia the truth: the truth that it was really her fault. As Petunia would put it, her kind had brought this about.

Petunia said that there was no bodies for the funeral, for the house had been reduced to ashes, so they had buried empty caskets.

How could this have happened now? Why had Petunia had the funeral without telling her? That was an ultimate low, even for her sister.

Now she was just like James, an orphan.

Her husband chose that moment to make an appearance.

When he saw his tear-streaked wife he hurried over. “What’s wrong? What happened?”

Lily took a shaky breath. “V-Voldemort killed my-my p-parents.” It was blunt, but that could not be changed.

James looked horrified. “Are you sure?”

She gestured to the papers on the table in front of her. “Petunia said that it was a bombing…but the Prophet says Voldemort murdered a couple in a house on the street where my parents live. I can put two and two together.”

He put his arm around her. “I’m so sorry…”

Lily gave a bitter laugh. “Now we’re the same, you and I, James. We both have no parents. Orphans.”

James took her hand. “Do you remember what you told me when my mum died?”

“Vaguely,” was her reply. She walked over to the ice chest and pulled out leftovers form the night before. She loaded some of the lasagna onto her plate, heated it with magic, and sat down at the table with James.

He continued. “You said that we have each other…and a world full of other people that care about us. And besides, they won’t be forgotten, right? We’ll make sure any kids we have will know about their grandparents, right?”

“I suppose so,” said Lily, forking some pasta into her mouth. “I really appreciate this James, but can I be alone for a minute? I just need to think about a few things.”

“Of course.” He got up, pecked her on the cheek, and went up to his study.


Lily succeeded in finishing what was left in the tray of lasagna and was just starting on the kitchen when Sirius walked into the room. He shrugged out of his traveling cloak and took the seat opposite her. “I heard what happened.”

“News travels fast,” Lily said bitterly.

“Yeah…well, what’re you going to do? Just mope around your house for the next six months?”

“My parents are dead, Sirius. Surely I’m entitled to some mourning time?”

“This is a war, Lily. People die. That doesn’t mean that we stop living each time. We just have to work harder to stop the lunatic causing it. You do want to stop him, don’t you?”

“Of course I do. How could you ask such a thing?”

“I’m just making sure.” He reached over to help himself to some of the chicken sitting in front of Lily. She slapped his hand away.

“God…my Mum loved bacon more than any other breakfast.” Lily sniffed and repressed a sob. “…And I keep smelling it everywhere…”

Sirius sniffed the air. “I don’t. When did you last have it?”

Lily blew her nose. “I dunno. Breakfast the morning before last.” She dried her eyes. “Do you want a cup of tea?”

She stood up and shuffled over to the counter top. When she turned around again with two mugs in her hand she found Sirius staring at her intently.

Lily felt uncomfortable. “Is anything…err…wrong?”

Sirius looked up and met her emerald eyes with his gray ones. “You’re pregnant, aren’t you?”

Lily looked shocked. “Of course I’m not!”

Sirius’ bark-like laugh echoed around the room. “How can you be sure? Do you mean to tell me that you and James haven’t…made love?”

Lily blushed scarlet. “I’m not.”

He gestured to the table around her. “You’ve eaten enough to feed a horse. You just said you smell bacon…when no one else can…among other things.” He looked her up and down. “Don’t tell me you didn’t suspect it.”

“Well…I…”

“Didn’t you have the flu last week?”

“Yes…but what does that have to do with anything?”

He leaned back and crossed his arms, a smirk on his face. “It means that a mini-James is growing inside of you.”

Lily swallowed and suddenly felt nauseous. “Do you really think so?”

“Go to the loo, perform the charm, and when it comes back positive go and tell your husband.”

He got up and headed towards the front door. “I think you should name him after me.”

And he left, leaving a very confused Lily.

The moment she heard the door slam, though, she grabbed her wand and sprinted into the nearest toilet room.




Ten minutes later Lily knew that Sirius’s suspicion had been correct. She sank to the floor, her back against the wall and closed her eyes. She was going to be a mother….she and James would be parents. For some reason, this made her feel somewhat old. She knew that from this moment on, her life would be changing. For better of for worse, she couldn’t be sure.

After the initial shock wore off, she found herself flowing with pride. She’d be bringing the new generation.

But then again, would she be able to bring the baby to term? James’ groin had paid heavy consequences when Lily had hated him. Would that affect the baby?

This brought up another issue. How would she tell James? How would he react? Maybe he didn’t want children this early. But then had been married for nearly three year. That was long enough, wasn’t it?

Lily stood up and headed up to James’ study, trying to take as long as possible. She wanted to have a clear head and know what to say by the time she reached the upper floor. Unfortunately, she was as confused as ever when she reached the oak door.

Upon opening the door, she found James sitting at his desk, writing on a long roll of parchment.

“Hey,” he said, looking up. “How’re you feeling?”

“Better,” was her reply. “What’re you doing?”

James motioned to the parchment sitting in front of him. “Attempting to write a novel.”

Lily looked at it curiously. “What about?”

“Our years at Hogwarts.”

“That’ll be quite a tale.”

James rolled up his work and looked at his wife. “Are you sure you’re alright?”

“Yeah.” Lily took a deep breath. “I have news.”

“And what would that be?”

“I…” She paused. “No…we…are g-going to have…a b-baby.”

James froze. His breath caught in his throat. It was his dream to have a child with Lily…and it was actually happening? He couldn’t comprehend it. It was amazi—


“James? James?”

He looked up to see Lily peering down at him; her face looked worrisome.

“What happened?” he croaked. He sat up and found that he had been lying on the couch in his study.

“You…er…lost consciousness.”

“How’d I get on the couch?”

“I dragged you up…”

James jumped up. “Don’t ever do that again! You’re pregnant! You can’t haul around heavy objects!”

“James, I—,”

“N, seriously Lily, I don’t care if the house is burning down and I pass out form smoke inhalation. You are NOT harming our baby.”

Before he knew what was happening Lily had her arms thrown around James’ neck. “So, you’re happy about the baby?”

James held her at arm’s length. “Of course I am! Why wouldn’t I be?”

“Well I wasn’t sure.” Lily let out a dry sob. “Oh James, I was so worried. Remember in our fifth year when I kicked you between the legs...and all those other times. What if the baby—,”

But she stopped when she saw that James was laughing.

After a few moments he managed to choke out. “In our third year was the first time you ever dared harm my…genitals. It hurt so bad that I got Moony to research ways to stop it. He found out about the muggle “Athletic cup”…and I started wearing that. And then whenever you kicked me, I only pretended to howl in pain.”

Lily gasped, and then whacked him upside the head. “You didn’t?!”

“Yip, I did. So our baby will be perfectly healthy.”

Lily sighed. “God, this pregnancy is getting me so hormonal. One minute I’m laughing…and now I’m going to start crying all over again.”

“Why? This should be a happy moment.”

“Because everyone’s dying James! What if I’m killed before the baby comes? All these people are giving their lives for this cause….and frankly, it’s terrifying. I mean, there shouldn’t even be a war! Why can’t everyone just get along? Voldemort’s taking over. Nowhere’s safe. I don’t want to die—,”

“This is what I want you to remember Lily,” interrupted James. “Remember that there was once a time when ultimate peace occupied the world; when everyone used to be happy and carefree. It will always be a cycle: the times of peace and the times of war. It seems to be human nature to feel the need to fight each other over disagreements. But when it looks like you’ve reached rock-bottom and feel like there’s no hope, just remember when everyone was happy. Remember what made people laugh and smile. Even in these days of despair one can still fine happiness and hope in the most unlikely of places. But please, I’m begging you, just remember that there was a time, and one day, that time will come again.”

Silence followed, only punctured when Lily hiccupped.

“That was very poetic, James.”

James tried to laugh. “I’ve been reading up on my T.S. Elliott.” He paused. “But we should be happy. You’re going to have a baby.”

“It is exciting,” replied Lily, giving a small smile. “But you realize we’re going to have to answer the two main kid questions: What happens after you die? And Where do babies come from?

“I call Where do babies come from,” said James.





Author’s Note:
Alrighty, I hope that you guys enjoyed the latest installment. A lot of things happened…and this is another chapter that is not my favorite. I’m not sure what you guys’ll think. Feel free to leave your comments. I really appreciate them…and hopefully I will have all my reviews answered soon. I’m making slow progress.

xxx


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