James walked back into the Evan's household a little awkward. He was going to wait outside with open arms waiting, but he wanted to get to know Mrs. Evans so that he could learn more about Lily's background.
Quietly shutting the door, he heard someone coming down the stairs and hoped that it wasn't the Mr. Evans that he hadn't met yet. Honestly, how would that look if he knew that he had just left his baby daughter by herself?
Stealthily, he ran across the room and into the kitchen where he found Mrs. Evans chopping carrots.
"Oh hello, dear." She smiled. "You and Lily back already?"
"Er....kind of." he scratched the back of his head. "Lily decided that she still needed some fresh air."
Margaret laughed, "Oh that Lily. She's always saying she wishes she could just live in a forest."
"Oh yes. She's told me all about that forest at Hogwarts where there are centaurs and all those other fairy tale creatures." James raised an eyebrow impressed that Lily had been able to keep out the part about that particular forest being forbidden. "Her and Severus always come home with the most interesting stories from there." She paused. "Has she told you anything about Severus today?"
"No, not yet."
Margaret shook her head. "Sometimes it worries me how much she bottles up all of her emotions. Eventually it all just comes pouring back out!" Their conversation was cut short when they heard the front door open and then shut. "Is that you, poppet?"
"Yeah.." Lily mumbled coming into the kitchen as well. James noticed her cheeks looked pink from being called the pet name. "Mum, is it ok if James and I talk in my room for a bit?"
Margaret looked at both of them and nodded her head. "No funny business, Lily." she warned pointing her chopping knife at Lily.
Lily's cheeks flushed some more, but walked out of the kitchen leading James to the second floor. Down the hall and on the second door on the right, Lily pushed open the door and ushered James inside. He saw a desk chair and took the liberty to take a seat. He swiveled around in it waiting for Lily to make the first move.
She closed her door half way and sighed as she turned around to look at James. She too small steps walking over to him and sat on his lap. "I'm sorry I yelled at you."
"I should have just talked to you instead of...having an outburst." James noticed that she was struggling with her apology, and realized he had never been on the receiving end of one from her.
"It's ok." He said wrapping his arms around her waist. "I've heard worse from you."
Lily laughed turning towards him. "I have missed you," she said leaning towards him.
James was easily enticed by her smiling eyes and puckering lips leaning in towards him, but he put his hand in front of her lips to stop her from coming any closer.
"Wow, wow, wow. Calm down."
"Remember? 'No funny business'"
"Oh come on! I'm sure if it were any other girl you would be snogging her senseless right now!"
"That's where you're wrong... in two ways!" Lily cocked her eye brow at him "One, I never went to other girls houses. It would have given them too much hope that they actually meant something more than a good shag."
"Well, isn't that something I was just dying to hear. I mean really James, must you really make me imagine you doing that?"
"And two!" he said loudly to overcome her complaints. "You aren't just any other girl. You're Lily Evans. And I want everything in our relationship to be perfect. From what Remus has told me, since Sirius didn't understand the term 'serious relationship', having the parents like you is one of the most essential things that helps a relationship work." Lily looked at him ready for him to make his point. "So I will not, and refuse to kiss you in here because with my luck your mum, or even worse your dad, will walk by and they'll hate me forever and never trust me with you again!"
"Whatever," Lily mumbled straightening back up.
"Thank you. Now can we please talk about what's going on with you? Even your mum said you've been acting strange."
Lily sighed and stood from James's lap. "We had a fight today, me and Severus...Snape...whatever I'm supposed to call him now. And I don't know what even brought it about! We were having a great day but then there was this awkward moment and he flipped out at me saying he was a charity case to me! And then we both started yelling at each other and it ended with him calling me mudblood."
"HE SAID WHAT?!"
"James, please! Must you always yell when something happens between me and Severus?"
"SNAPE! CALL HIM SNAPE!"
"Lily!" Margaret called up the stairs.
"Hold on, mum!" she yelled back through the door. "James Potter you either stop yelling right now or you get out of my house." He was fuming. He stood from the chair and began pacing back and forth again like he had the night by the lake.
"Lily! You've got another visiter!"
"Mum I said hold-" She paused knowing who it was.
'Think, think, THINK!!' Lily knew the only person it would be now...and even though she would have loved to see James tackle and punish Severus...she knew she would never be able to stand it... "Come on, Lily...you can handle this. Be strong."
"Coming!" she yelled out the door. She turned to see James's reaction, but he hadn't noticed her sudden silence, or her mom's yells at all. "I'll be right back." She muttered and ran downstairs. Severus was standing awkwardly in her living room, looking anxiously at her on the stairs. He opened his mouth to say something, but Lily grabbed him by the arm and led him straight out the door.
"Lily, you've got to listen-"
"No, Severus, you listen. From now on you are Snape to me. I don't care if what you said was out of anger, and I don't care how sorry you are. You have made too many mistakes and I'm sick of pretending like I can change you. Now consider this my last act as a friend because right now James is in that house and I could've had him come down here and punch the lights out of you." Severus's eyes turned cold in a second and were immediately searching all the windows of the house. But it wasn't long before Lily's unnaturally cold voice brought him back to the present situation. "So leave now and we can both continue down the paths we've obviously chosen."
He could see her eyes shining in anger, and even the thought of how beautiful she looked couldn't stop him from knowing that she meant what she said, and he had drawn the last straw.
"Sev....please." she said with her voice's anger changing to sadness. He slowly turned and made his way down the side walk. When he was clear out of her sight, Lily turned to go back into the house only to face James. "I took care of him myself." she said after a quick pause.
Looking James eye to eye, Lily couldn't think of anything else to do but hug him, where she felt safe in his arms.
"He was my first best friend, you know...besides Petunia,"
"Yeah...and on summer vacations we would sneak out at night just to swing and try to read what was in the stars."
"Did you ever get anything right?"
"Not yet." she chuckled.
And even though her chuckle was believable, she couldn't believe how much of a cry baby she was becoming. Tears were dampening her eyes and she took advantage of their silence to get rid of them before she would have to go back inside.
"Your mum said dinner was ready, so I came out to get you."
She pulled away from his chest and patted his stomach saying, "Thank you." She gave a quick peck to his lips. "Lets go get some food then." And even though Lily pretended she was going to be ok, James knew it would take some time for her heart to heal.
Later that evening, after dinner was served, plates were cleaned, and Lily had given James a kiss her mother probably would not have approved of, James walked out of the house, leading down the street.
Today had definitely cheered up his summer, but he could not block out his blinding hate towards Severus Snape. He had heard him call Lily a mud....mud...oh for Merlin's sake, he couldn't even think of the word, but he had heard him call her that before and he would have liked nothing better than curse the living daylights out of him. It was something his family had always taught him to fight against, and until Snape knew the consequences he would only feel the need to protect Lily from him now that she finally knew the person he had become.
So as he walked down the street he looked for signs of magic...just anything! But they all seemed so boring and...muggle. That one had two cars, the one on the left was bursting with electronics like the tele and stereo...and then half way down the block a house had neither cars or noise. Just blankets drawn perfectly over all of the windows with a faint light behind them. James looked around and noticed there weren't any cars...not even a skateboard or a sign of muggle toys.
He decided he could take the chance and walked up to the door. It took a few minutes for anyone to come to answer and he was reaching to knock again when it swung open.
A man around the age of 50 answered. Like his eyes, his hair was black, cropped short. He looked at James up and down, his face set on a false polite look, and then asked, "Can I help you?"
"Yes, is Severus here?"
The man's look changed drastically to a cold glare. "And what makes you think he's here."
"Er.." James was taken aback by his sudden mood change, "I know him from school and was in the neighborhood and thought I would just-"
"Wait here," he shut the door, cutting off James.
After a few minutes of waiting the door opened again, but instead of short cropped hair, a boy appeared with long greasy strands. And before he had time to register who James was, a fist collided with his crooked nose. He stumbled backwards grabbing his face, yelling in shock.
James grabbed him by the scruffs of his clothing and yanked him outside shutting the door with him. "If you ever hurt her again, I'll kill you," he hissed.
Snape looked up into his eyes and knew this was no school boy rivalry. In those hazel orbs a passion was radiating that Severus would never have. He had chosen to follow Voldemort, hoping it would help to protect Lily at the same time, and it wasn't until now that he saw his greatest mistake.
Lily wasn't, and never had been one to hide away in times of need, or look weak by letting others protect her. James understood that...to an extent. And because of his stupidity he had lost her forever.
Sinking in guilt, and drowning in his pain he didn't even care when James shoved him roughly back into the door.
"And I mean it."
James walked down the steps of the house into the darkness of the street. He distracted himself by trying to find a quiet place to apparate, but all he could think about was how there was still so much more to do before Lily would ever be safe from people like Snape, if she could ever be safe from them. It was a thought that would haunt him day and night, but he would dedicate the rest of his life to trying.
Author's Note: Special thanks to Chantiella for reviewing! You go girl. lol!!
But ok, this is my last chapter of the story. I hope you don't click away thinking it was a waste of time, and even if not I'll be editing it a lot :)