Chapter 1 : Only chapter :)
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Re-edit: 10/31/08-HAPPY HALLOWEEN! I know with the site falling down that all my reviews for this story got lost, but I realized that I needed to edit this again anyway. Much thanks to Steff for always editing and being awesome. I hope the edits make this one-shot better.
All my love,
Laughing, Lily and James tumbled into their Heads’ Common Room. They smiled at one another, and then soundlessly, Lily dropped her bag down and settled on the red velvet couch. James repeated the action and sat near Lily, their thighs touching. A moment passed, and James leaned over, cupping Lily’s head in his hands. His hazel eyes met her emerald eyes, and he began to kiss her. The chaste kiss quickly turned fierce, each party kissing with speed. His adrenaline was pulsating as the couple continued to kiss. They pulled away breathlessly, but soon returned to their kissing. Lily’s lips moved in synch with James’s as Lily leaned onto James, their kissing intensifying even more. James pulled away and began to kiss down Lily’s neck. Lily sighed with a hint of pleasure.
"It has been a long week, hasn’t it, James?"
James pulled away before breathing out, "You have no idea." He returned with vigor attacking her neck with little love bites. Lily let out a moan of pleasure as James nibbled on her ear, tugging gently. Fueled by the moan, James returned to kissing Lily on the lips and as he did so, he flipped Lily over so that he lay onto of her. James’ hands left her hips and weaved their way through her hair as she rubbed his arms. They pulled away for a moment, foreheads still touching. Hot, quick breaths hit James’ face. James kissed Lily’s forehead and grinned at her. "It has been a really long week since we haven’t gotten a good snog in five days." Lily mock pouted at him.
"Oh really? Is the only reason you are dating me is for the snogging sessions?"
"Nah, you’re cute too," James murmured as his lips tenderly touched her ear.
"Ha ha," Lily faked a chuckle. "Mmm…as nice as this is, I need to move so I can work on my homework." She happily kissed James in a lazy kiss, slow with plenty of passion and tenderness. James sighed and lay his head into the crook of her neck, kissing it after every word he spoke.
"Do we have to?" he whined. James breathed in the scent of Lily. She smelt of light citrus, baby’s breath, and fresh breeze like on a spring day.
"You don’t have to, but I do. I would love it if you followed the schedule I wrote for us though," Lily answered as the clean, rough smell of James’ shampoo and aftershave lulled into Lily’s nose. James moaned a little, removing his face from Lily’s neck and kissed her cheek twice.
"Let’s see that schedule, shall we?" James was still a Marauder at heart, late to always do his homework, but for Lily, he would try and play along. The two sat up onto the couch. Lily removed a parchment from her jumper pocket and gave it to James. James scanned it quickly, snorting every few seconds.
"What?" Lily demanded cryptically, raising a fiery eyebrow.
"Really, Lily? Planning things like cuddle time? This is a joke, right?" James chuckled, handing Lily the list.
Lily huffed, "Well, if you like to take my serious consideration of everything as a joke…"
"Lil, I care about you, but really who plans cuddle time or snog time or time to dream about one another?"
"We haven’t snogged for a week, and you saw how heavy things got so quickly-"
"Didn’t see you objecting," James mumbled. Lily gave him an icy look as she stood up.
"I wasn’t. But if we made time with each other by scheduling everything else we need to do, we could make time for luxuries like that." James followed her action and looked her in the eye.
"Really, Lily? Since when did the physical part of our relationship become a luxury as you so gratefully put it?"
"James, you know as well as I do that I can be a prude and that on command, you can lose all sexual outlets!" Lily screeched. James chuckled and slid his hands around Lily’s waist.
"You know as well as I, Lils, that you need these snogging sessions as much as I do. You enjoy them very much," he paused to kiss her collarbone and she moaned. "Your mouth and response tells me as much." Lily pulled away from James’ grip.
"I don’t appreciate it, James. Unlike you, apparently, our relationship to me isn’t solely based on the physical. Why I am still surprised is beyond me because well, it is you." James’ hazel eyes flashed dangerously.
"I’m not going to lie when I say that I’m hurt, Lily. Do you still think that I haven’t grown up after all these years? Did we not talk from last January to now? Did the physical part of our relationship not start until after our third date? And if I remember correctly, you were the initiator of that first kiss."
"And don’t I regret it!" Lily snapped. James was taken back and hurt. He couldn’t help, but wonder if she meant that. "You know what, James, I just think we should start our homework or something. Something to relieve this tension."
"This is so typical you, Lily. Walking away from your problems," James groaned, running his hand through his hair and making it a mess.
"Oh really? What else is so typical me?" Lily demanded.
"Where do I begin? How about when you freaking talk to yourself as you do your homework? Or your beautiful, melodic snoring that I can hear through the bloody stone walls? Shall I share my favorite, which is your talent to meddle into my business and twist my words to make me seem like the bad guy? I’m also pretty fond of your ability to make everything seem like its going to cause the end of the world. Or your ability to cry at the drop of a hat? Sirius shared with me that his personal favorite is your ability to nag, which I agree has have got to have set some world record. There’s a whole bloody list, but we don’t have all night since it isn’t in the bloody schedule!" James yelled, his face beet red. Lily just stared at him.
"Right," she said curtly. "Well, I’ll just be off, Potter," she hissed.
"Oh wait please don’t leave, Evans!" James called mockingly. "How old are we, Lily, fifteen?"
"Just leave me alone, you great oaf!"
"Oh please, your name calling hurts me!"
"Just shut it, Lily!" James yelled, his voice booming at her. His red face stared down at her, and he saw shock in her eyes. He had never raised his voice like this to her before, and he’d never felt so guilty so quickly. Lily’s eyes shined immediately as she backed away from him.
"I hate you," she whispered, her voice catching with emotion. James stormed out of the Common Room in anger and guilt. "I hate you!" she repeated, yelling at his retreating back. Lily kicked the back of the couch and tried to focus on her homework. She pulled it out of her bag, but every time she tried to focus, blazing hazel eyes came to mind and she couldn’t focus. A few frustrated tears slipped down Lily’s cheeks as she punched the arm of the couch, angry and hurt. Meanwhile, James stormed into the hallway, but after he had reached the Astronomy Tower, he breathed out. He stared out onto the dark horizon and all the memories came flooding back to him. Tears pricked at his eyes, and James couldn’t help but feel foolish. No one else did this to him not his parents or the Marauders. No one made his heart beat like Lily did. Damn girls, damn Lily.
James sulked. James Potter had never bloody sulked. A week and a half had passed since the second fight. Oh yes, it’d been over three weeks since the first fight. An uneasy silence had settled between the two. And by the very obnoxious rumblings of Padfoot and Moony, James had initiated conversation with Lily. At first, the two Heads had kept the conversation to neutral, safe subjects: Sirius, Remus, classes, and Lily’s friends. They never dare tread onto their own personal relationship. And then, Lily had to bring it up.
"James?" Lily asked uneasily. It was a Wednesday late night after classes and patrolling. The clock in the Common Room struck one. It was already in the early morning of Thursday, but both excellent students had essays due the next day that needed fixing. Truthfully, Lily was done and was just reviewing her essay-for the fifth time. Truthfully, Lily wanted to spend time with James. Lily needed to talk with James.
"Yeah?" James muttered, not looking from his essay. Lily stood up and sat down next to James on couch. James’s quill stopped writing, his back stiffened, but his eyes never left his parchment. "Lily?" he murmured softly.
"James, I miss you," Lily pleaded, emotion seeping into her voice. Lily broke the no contact rule and gently touched James’ shoulder. James immediately flinched at her touch, but his body wanted to respond to Lily. He felt her warmth and he wanted to kiss those fleshy lips teasing his own.
"Lily…" James moaned. Lily’s hand swept and scratched James’ back. James hung his head and just let the feeling of Lily’s hands wash over him. A few minutes passed, but soon, James could no longer contain himself and pulled from Lily’s reach. Lily looked at him hurt. "Lily, I can’t do this. It’s either a relationship or…nothing. As much as it hurts, it hurts more to be your friend and know that I’ve kissed you, had you fancy me back and had intimate conversations with you. Lily, I love you. And I can’t stop." Lily stood up immediately and turned her back. James followed her. "Lily…do you want a relationship?"
"James, you know I can’t make that promise. I…can’t promise to love you. And how the hell do you know you love me?"
"You can’t explain love, Lily. And what are you afraid of-getting close to me, putting your heart on the line?"
"James…" Lily said warningly.
"No, Lily. Just…give up control and leap, Lily. Have faith in me. I know I’ll make mistakes and I’ll hurt your heart. I’ve already hurt you so many times and I hate myself for it. You’ve never had a boyfriend, I know. But this…this is something special. I know you feel it."
"James, I can’t hurt anymore. And I know I can’t jump. So, no, James, no relationship."
"ARE YOU SAYING WE AREN’T WORTH IT LILY!?!"
"Yes," Lily whispered. James stared at her disbelievingly.
"Fine. Just fantastic," James muttered as he stormed off to his room. Lily burst into tears as she sank onto the couch.
James snapped out of the memory. He had never felt…so empty before. It felt so cliché but he was hurt. James had become constantly grumpy, and his hazel eyes had dimmed. James alienated himself from his friends, and spent all of his time alone doing Head duties, avoiding Lily, practicing Quidditch, thinking, doing homework, or working out. There had been a lot of running and boxing. James punched harder and ran faster than ever before. He was trying to run away from Lily. From what had happened to them, but James knew that it wasn’t an option. His friends gazed on to him with concern, but James refused to talk about it. Everyone seemed to notice, but little did James know that Lily knew and was aware more than anyone.
Lily too had begun to see a change in herself since she and James had been together. Their friendship had timidly begun last January, the second half of Sixth Year. James, Sirius, Remus, and even Peter had come back after that Christmas changed. Something had occurred, not that it altered their friendship, but all four had matured. All four of them still laughed and pulled pranks, but there was a strain, something holding them back. James had initiated conversation with the promise to stop asking her out and the hope of civility. Their fights had been famous throughout the castle, and both were sick of the negative attention. Slowly, through uneasy conversation and bonding over homework, an odd but comforting formed. Lily laughed more, worried less. James smiled more, but worked harder and paid attention a bit more. There was an easy atmosphere now in the Gryffindor tower. Then summer came and passed with little letters between the two, except when they found out they would Heads together. Lily found herself looking forward to that. James got the work done well, and they were now friends. It would work perfectly. September passed with a few questionable moments. James and her had begun to hug and Lily had even accustomed herself to kissing his cheek. Sometimes it was James placing a hand on her back while he gently guided her in the hallway. The intensity of the chemistry increased when James and her had tag team defended themselves against a pair of ferocious Slytherins. One day, James asked Lily out again for the first time in nearly eight months, and she said yes.
The relationship had blossomed, but Lily feared commitment. Her mother had walked out on the family when Lily was nine because of an affair. Her dad had dated a bit, but nothing serious. Lily saw the hurt in her father’s eyes when her mother had left. She didn’t want it to happen to her so she had begun to be extra careful in every relationship she stepped into. She dated plenty, but none of the guys lasted more than three dates except James. Lily had grown fond of James in two months and she was shocked how closely she attached herself. The normality of being with James is what scared her most. She knew she didn’t love him; she couldn’t in only two months. She knew that however, she was close to fancying him.
Lily stood up from where she had been in the Common room and slipped upstairs before James walked in. Lily hadn’t sleep in three nights again. She kept having nightmares and she had begun to stress about NEWTs yet again. She would go days without sleeping or eating hardly anything. All Lily did was drink a lot of water and continuously read. She would go days without a proper shower, and a day or two in the same uniform. Her hygiene was neglected because Lily had become obsessed with forgetting James and focusing on the future. Her friends tried to talk to her, but she ignored them and stormed away. Lily felt so numb…kind of void. She felt like she had when she found out her mum had died in Fourth Year. It had come as a shock, and she eventually recovered a little, but her heart was still torn from it.
Lily sneaked through another portrait and began to wander the hall while she ‘patrolled’ to get away and escape. Suddenly, someone grabbed her hand and pulled her into an empty classroom. A gasp escaped from her dry lips and she tried to scream, but it was muffled by a hand. She bit into flesh and a whimper came as the hand left her mouth. "Jeez, Lily, you can bite hard," Sirius whined.
"Sirius? What are you doing?"
"Lily, I need to talk to you. About James." Lily stared at him blankly before turning to walk away. Sirius stepped in front of her. "Look," he pleaded, "just hear me out before you walk away."
"Fine," Lily answered curtly.
"I know James was a prat to tell you he loved you, but he’s got to be honest in his relationships, Lily. He needs you as much as you need him. You are both right for each other. James brings out the fun side of you, and you make James work harder and slow down. James is the on the move guy and you make him stop and appreciate what he has. Now all he bloody does is work out and do Quidditch or homework. We haven’t had a proper conversation in over a month!" Sirius looked frustrated. "He’s my brother or the closest thing I have left to family, and…I need him back. In order for that to him, he needs you back. I know its sounds selfish, but isn’t it worth it? Isn’t happiness worth it? You work through the problems with people you care about. You care about him, I know you do." Sirius stopped to breathe for a moment. "You are both stubborn. Even more so than me. One of you has to break down first and it’ll be you, Lily, it has to." Sirius left without another word and stormed out of the room, leaving Lily with her thoughts swirling.
A few weeks passed and while Lily tried to devote moments to talk to Sirius about it, it never seemed to happen however. Her days and thoughts were dedicated to her schoolwork and Head duties. She patrolled, but even then she couldn’t be left alone with her thoughts because she feared what would happen and slip her attention if she did. Finally, one Sunday early evening Lily had the Common Room alone to herself without the interruptions of James for once. She tried to gather her thoughts, but she could only come up with one conclusion. She needed to trust herself to begin to trust James. She had tried to trust James before, but there hadn’t been enough trust in her to do that. She didn’t trust herself; how could she trust anyone else? Her thoughts were startled by a large thump that came from behind her. Lily turned around alarmed and came eye to eye with two orbs of hazel. "James?" Lily huskily asked.
"Lily," James addressed before heading for the portrait hole.
"James-wait! Please be careful. Can we talk tomorrow?" Lily called out, her voice strained with emotion. James turned around and studied Lily for a moment before a flicker of light entered his eyes and a small smile graced his face.
"I’d like that, Lily. See you in the morning?" Lily nodded and James left in a much better mood. A couple of hours later, Lily was awoken in a deep sweat with a start. Something eternally told her not all was right so, grabbing her wand and her robe, Lily snuck to the grounds. Just as her padded onto the wet grass, Lily saw a dark hairy figure fighting a four-legged creature with antlers. James and Remus. A dog sneaked off to one side watching the battle. Lily looked around to see if anyone else was out, but she saw no one. The feeling of dread pooled in her stomach however. She watched the two battling and sensed it was different than normal. Lily watched in horror as Remus, the werewolf, tossed James, the stag, high into the air. She physically shrieked as James came plummeting back towards Earth and towards some rocks. She immediately secured a shield spell around James as he landed gruffly about a foot from the rocks. Fearing for James’ head, Lily took off in a run towards him, completely forgetting the werewolf some twenty feet away. However, Lily’s body immediately recognized as the werewolf tried to sneak up on her. Sirius immediately lunged at Remus’s back and distracted him. A howl could be heard far away and Lily turned to see a squat boy howling at the moon. Remus immediately reacted and ran off. Just as he took off, the outline of the boy disappeared into the night. Sirius sprinted over to Lily and immediately turned back into a human.
"Lily," he panted. "Get James out of here. He has already sustained some injuries. Get him to the Hospital Wing to Madam Pomfrey. Somehow she already knows what goes on. Then find Dumbledore. Peter, Remus, and I will be back in a few hours." Lily nodded before Sirius swiftly kissed her cheek and changed back. Lily blushed slightly. Sirius truly had begun to grow up and she was glad that she had finally given all four of the boys a chance, not only Remus. Lily immediately knelt beside James and began to inspect him for injuries. His head seemed to be all right, but she couldn’t be sure of anything. He had scratches bleeding on his arm and she was sure he had a few on his chest and legs. She levitated him with her wand carefully as she tried to bring back toward the castle. She carefully directed James through the halls as she headed towards the Hospital Wing. She knocked on the door as she approached and she was immediately greeted by loud objections from behind the door.
"What?" a clearly irritated young nurse asked as she opened the door. Upon seeing the Head Girl levitating the Head Boy’s unconscious body, she hustled the two of them in. Lily lowered James onto a bed and let the nurse get to work.
"I'm going to go see Professor Dumbledore and forewarn him if that’s quite all right," Lily murmured.
"That’s fine, dear, but please return soon so I can get a statement from you as to how to treat the boy." Lily nodded and headed out of the door towards the Headmaster’s office. Upon reaching halfway, she saw the elder wizard heading her way.
"Professor," she greeted before seeing Professor McGongall in tow. "Professor," she repeated toward the Head of her house.
"What is the meaning of this, Miss Evans? One of my prized Heads out in the middle of the night?" Professor McGongall demanded to know immediately.
"Don’t worry yourself now, Minerva. Let me talk to Miss Evans and you go join Poppy," Professor Dumbledore calmly explained.
"Alright, Albus," Professor McGongall replied tightlipped. Professor Dumbledore led the way toward his office with Lily closely behind him. He finally reached the portal before murmuring something and the staircase sprung to life. Lily followed his quick strides up the stairs. Immediately, she was seated into a comfy leather chair facing across from the Professor.
"So, Miss Evans care to explain about you and Mr. Potter?"
"What are you talking about Professor? I thought you would want to talk about tonight," Lily asked confused. A familiar twinkle shone in Professor Dumbledore’s eyes as he watched Lily.
"Miss Evans, I am already aware of the actions of Mr. Black, Mr. Lupin, Mr. Pettigrew, and Mr. Potter. I keep tabs on them often. What I am at a loss for, however, is the rift that has developed between my two Heads," Professor Dumbledore answered calmly.
"I don’t know how to explain it sir. James and I let our relationship come before our responsibilities to the school, to ourselves…" Lily trailed off. Professor Dumbledore raised a finger to her.
"Fear does incredible things to us. It paralyzes us in the present causing our vision of the future to be fogged and our remembrance of the past to become painstakingly clear."
"Sir, its just…how can we be so confident in love? I saw my parents’ own marriage fall to pieces because my mom no longer loved my dad." Lily answered in a whisper. Professor Dumbledore leaned forward toward Lily.
"Love itself is powerful enough to hold us hostage, but it takes gentle care, tender honesty, clear truth, and untainted favor to kindle love in a relationship. Love changes as well, Miss Evans. You will not always be in love with your spouse. Your life changes, you change, but the thing about love that you work hard at is that love always finds a way. True love, Miss Evans, while as rare as it is, understands this and embraces it instead of shying away from it." Lily was left alone to her thoughts.
"May I return to James?" Lily asked.
"Yes, but one last question; what were you doing outside at such a convenient moment, Miss Evans?" Professor Dumbledore asked Lily curiously. Lily paused for a moment as she stood up. She smiled before answering.
"Love, sir. Growing love." Lily nodded before leaving his office and returning to the Hospital Wing. As Lily recounted her tale to Madam Pomfrey, she was careful to divulge enough to satisfy the women without giving too much detail. With the permission of the nurse, Lily sat at James’s bedside with a washcloth as she clean the dirt from his face and his wounds that were visible
James awoke with wonder and as he tried to speak, Lily silenced him. Her eyes explained it all to him, and he sat back carefully. Lily continued to care for James’ cuts with one hand while her other hand was grasped by James’ hand tightly. The past few weeks of fights and tension melted away. Both of them knew they would have to talk it out, but now, they had passed another battle. They could move on in their relationship. It wasn’t going to be easy; they would never be perfect together, but that was because they had true love.