Chapter 2 : Of Twizzlies and Light Sabers
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James awoke the next morning to the sun streaming in from a window above his head. He vaguely could hear the clinking of dishes downstairs and the sound of Lily laughing. Rubbing his eyes, James rolled out of bed, habitually running a hand through his hair. He trudged to his suitcase, flipping it open to survey the clothes he had brought. It had taken quite a bit of effort to pull together enough clothes for the week that had no remnants of the Wizarding World on them. He had never noticed just how many of his shirts had Quidditch terms and pictures on them, nor had he realized how short he was on casual pants. Luckily, Peter had a few pairs of jeans that James had snatched, though as he pulled a pair on, he immediately noticed the too large waist and the too short legs. With a sigh, he pulled a plain shirt over his head and resolved to trek downstairs for breakfast despite his wardrobe issues.
When he reached the doorway that led to the kitchen, Lily was the first thing that caught his eye. She was smiling brightly, laughing once more at something her mother had said. Her eyes twinkled in delight, a sight he had rarely seen when he was in her presence. He only had a split second to witness this, though, before Lily caught his figure in the doorway and stopped laughing.
“Good morning, James,” Lily’s mother said jovially, beckoning him towards the table.
As he entered, Lily stood up quickly, moving towards a cupboard. “Would you like anything to drink?” she asked him without meeting his eyes.
James surveyed the table before he sat down in front of an empty plate. “Uh, I’ll just have some orange juice. Thanks,” he said quickly. He watched as Lily took out a tall glass and filled it before bringing it back and setting it in front of his plate. “I hope I didn’t sleep in too long,” he said, noticing that the two of them were nearly done eating.
Before Lily could respond, her mother chimed in. “Oh, no. We’re just early risers. No need to worry! Please, help yourself.”
James smiled and took a few pancakes off of the pile in the middle of the table with his fork, along with a spoonful of scrambled eggs and a muffin.
He began eating and he heard Lily’s voice from across the table. “What, are you a bottomless pit or something?”
Lily’s mother quickly shushed her daughter, though, and looked at James with that warm smile that he was beginning to become accustomed to. “Please, have as much as you’d like. I made plenty.”
James set down his fork in surprise, a quizzical look coming across his face. “You made all this?” he asked suddenly, furrowing his brow.
“Well, yes, of course,” Lily’s mother said, glancing momentarily at her daughter. “Who else would make it?”
“Well, I knew you didn’t have house elves, but—ow!” He was cut off quickly when he felt a sharp kick in the shin delivered by Lily. “It’s just so delicious,” he corrected, looking momentarily to Lily for approval, who smiled simply in response.
“Well, thank you, James. That’s very kind of you,” she responded amiably, taking one more bite off of her plate before she stood up resolutely and looked to Lily. “Lily, would you mind cleaning up here?”
“Of course,” Lily responded warmly, standing up as well as her mother left the kitchen. James watched her begin to pick up the empty plates, stacking the silverware on top of them. Taking a few large bites, he finished up the food on his plate and stood up hastily.
“Let me help you out,” he offered as she turned towards the sink with the dishes.
“No, really, that’s fine. You’re not here to clean my house,” she said, but he seemed not to hear. Taking out the wand that had been residing in his back pocket, he flicked it, watching in approval as the remaining dishes slowly began to float off of the table. Lily turned back to pick up the rest of the dishes and gasped loudly as she saw the floating china. “James! Stop!” she exclaimed in a strained whisper.
In confusion, James let the plates slowly drift back to the table. “What?” he asked, bewildered.
“What part of Muggles don’t you understand?” she demanded, grabbing the remaining plates from the table indignantly.
“Oh…” he said slowly, pocketing his wand once again.
“My parents have never seen me do magic. And if you take out that wand anywhere around here, people will think you’re crazy,” she told him as she moved back to the sink, grabbing some dish soap and a sponge.
“Right… So no magic?” he asked with a frown.
“No magic. In fact, I would hide that wand away in your trunk somewhere. My sister will flip out if she sees that. And I think her heart my stop at the sight of floating dishes.” It did not escape James’ observation that Lily scrubbed with more determination as she said this.
“You have a sister?” he asked, moving towards her slowly.
“Yeah. Petunia. You’ll meet her soon enough,” she said through gritted teeth, her eyes trained on the dishes.
James opened his mouth to respond, but before a word came out of his mouth, a wet dish was shoved into his hands.
“You want to be helpful? Dry this,” Lily said, tossing a towel to him.
They two of them stood in silence, Lily passing dishes to James and James drying and setting them down on the counter. After several minutes, Lily spoke once more.
“So, we were told that as hosts, we are supposed to bring you out to do Muggle things. I figured I could bring you out to see a movie,” she muttered without looking at him.
“Oh, the moving picture thing?” James asked quickly, his eyes brightening.
Lily glanced over to him, smiling a bit. “Yeah, the moving picture thing. There’s a movie theatre a few blocks away that’s still playing Star Wars. I figured you’d like that,” she continued as she went back to washing the dishes.
“Star Wars?” James asked, furrowing his brow. “I didn’t know stars could fight…”
“Don’t worry about it. You’ll like it.” With that, she passed off the final dish to James. “Thanks for the help. If you want to go put your wand away, we’ll head off in a few minutes.” She began to leave the kitchen, calling out as she passed through the doorway. “Oh, and nice pants by the way!”
James chuckled, setting down the last dry dish before he followed her out. Taking the stairs by twos, he reached his room quickly and placed his wand carefully at the bottom of his suitcase. When he walked back downstairs, he saw Lily near the front door with a purse over her shoulder. She was taking a handful of foiled chocolates from a bowl in the front hall, dropping them into her bag when he finally reached her.
“You ready?” she asked simply, to which he nodded in response. Motioning towards the door, Lily exited and James followed behind her, closing the door as he passed through.
“Are we going by taxi again?” he asked her.
Lily shook her head, not looking back at him. “No, we’re taking my car.” With that, she took out a ring of keys, jingling them for him to see.
“Oh…” James murmured under his breath, noticing suddenly that they were approaching a car that was parked on the street next to the house. “Am I allowed to sit in the front?” he asked hesitantly before Lily got in the car.
“Yeah. Get on in,” she said, opening the door and sliding into the seat.
Gingerly, he touched the door handle and pulled at it, surprised when it flew open so suddenly. He got into the front seat, closing the door behind him and reaching for the seatbelt proudly. “I didn’t forget this time,” he told her, delighted with himself.
She didn’t respond as she jammed her keys into the ignition, shifting gears before she pulled away from her house. James grabbed the side of his seat as they drove through her neighborhood, nervously looking between her and the road.
“Should we be going this fast?” he asked slowly.
“We haven’t even left the neighborhood yet… I’m barely going fast at all,” she responded indignantly, changing gears once again. “Besides, the taxi driver went plenty faster than this.”
“But he’s a professional,” James insisted, frowning as Lily burst out in laughter.
“But you fly twice as fast as I ever drive. Why should this freak you out?” she asked, glancing over at him.
“Keep your eyes on the road!” he exclaimed, pointing frantically towards the road. “And that’s different…I’m in the air…There’s nothing to hit.” Despite his fear, he watched in fascination as she slowed to a stop, turning to face her once again. “I didn’t mean that you had to stop…”
“It’s a stop sign, James. Leave the driving to me.”
As they continued, he became more and more comfortable with the concept of driving. He couldn’t help but observe Lily with utter absorption, trying to grasp the mechanics of driving. He had a million questions to ask, desperate to understand how she controlled the speed of the car, what the gear shift was for, how she knew how to stay inside the lines on the road, how it was powered. Lily was happy to answer every question with perfect civility, explaining to the best of her knowledge how the car worked. When he asked if he could drive it sometime, though, she laughed and shook her head.
“I don’t think so. That would be highly illegal. You don’t want to get in trouble with Muggle law,” she asserted, which James seemed to accept.
Fifteen minutes later, they reached the movie theatre and Lily parked. They got out of the car and James looked around in fascination at the Muggles walking to and from their cars as Lily locked the door. She watched him in amusement, tugging at his arm to get him to follow her to the entrance of the movie theatre.
“Have you never interacted with Muggles before?” she asked quietly, eyeing him.
“Not often…” he mumbled in return. “I don’t get outside the Wizarding community very often,” he said under his breath.
“Just don’t be stupid, okay?” Lily said doubtfully. “Just treat them how you would treat any Wizard you know. Except don’t mention magic…” she amended, giving him a sideways glance.
“Right,” he replied, nodding adamantly as they reached the ticket counter.
“What movie?” the slouching boy behind the counter asked monotonously.
“Hi! I’m James!” James said overly brightly, smiling to the boy who looked quite confused by the introduction.
He saw Lily roll her eyes suddenly, shaking her head. “Two for Star Wars, please,” she responded, pushing a few bills to the teller.
“Third theatre on the left,” he responded dully, handing her back the tickets.
Lily grabbed his elbow, pulling him away from the booth. “Is that how you would talk to someone at school that you had just met?” she asked accusingly, narrowing her eyes.
“I guess not…” he said sheepishly, dropping his eyes to the floor.
“That’s what I thought. Now, do you want anything to eat or drink?” she inquired, pointing towards the concessions.
James looked towards the counter, marveling at the rows of candy displayed behind the glass.
Lily waited for a few moments as he stared at the variety of candy before she sighed and went up to the counter. “He’d like a pack of Twizzlers and a Cola,” she said decisively, handing over a few more bills as the cashier took out a package of licorice and filled up a cup of soda. Lily grabbed a straw from the counter, tapping it on the surface to remove the wrapping and sticking it into the cup. Picking up both the candy and the drink, she shoved them towards James.
“Here,” she said resolutely, turning to walk towards the theatre as James fumbled with his recent acquisitions. Frenetically, James rushed behind her, barely catching up as she opened the door to the dark theatre. He followed behind her, fazed by the darkness that suddenly surrounded him. She led him to a row near the middle, scooting past a few people to reach two seats near the center of the theatre. James could feel Lily watching as he desperately tried to pass the people in the row without kicking their feet or knocking over their drinks.
“Home free,” James sighed in relief as he finally sat down, placing the soda in a cup holder, just like he had seen the other people do.
They had made it just in time, for the movie started only a few minutes after they entered. James looked around as the theatre got darker, noticing out of the corner of his eye that Lily was unwrapping and eating something.
“Do you want a kiss?” she said almost inaudibly.
His head whipped around to look at her, eyes wide. “What did you say?” he said rather loudly, his mouth hanging agape.
Lily cleared her throat, looking uncomfortably at the other movie goers who were glaring at them. “It’s chocolate…” she responded under her breath, holding out the wrapped candy she had been putting in her purse earlier that day.
“Oh…” he responded, taking it tentatively from her hand. “Thanks…” He slowly unwrapped it, popping the chocolate into his mouth.
“Mmmm…This is good!” he exclaimed, to which he received several loud shushes.
“James… You need to—…” she began, but he had already torn open the licorice and had begun eating.
“And these Twizzlies are fantastic!” he informed her mirthfully.
A man leaned down from the row behind them, tapping Lily angrily on the shoulder. “Keep your boyfriend quiet or take him outside,” he hissed nastily.
James turned around, glaring at the man. “Don’t talk to her like that!” he retorted.
Lily shook her head, though, placing a hand on James’ arm to quiet him. “No, stop,” she said to James, turning back to the man. “I’m sorry, sir. He doesn’t get out often. I’ll make sure to keep him quiet, though,” she whispered apologetically before turning around, giving James a look.
“Sorry…” he mouthed to her, turning back forward to watch the movie.
“And then when Obi-Wan and that Vader guy had that duel, and they use those wand things—…” James gushed as they walked back out to the parking lot.
“Lightsabers,” Lily offered, smiling to herself.
“And he was swinging it around and was like—…” With that, James jumped in front of Lily, holding an imaginary lightsaber, imitating its sound as he spun around pretended to duel with Lily.
Laughing, Lily shook her head and continued to walk. “Well, I’m glad you liked it,” she responded.
“Do Muggles have that stuff? Like the Death Star and tractor beams and droids and Jedis and stuff?” he demanded, following close behind her.
“No, it’s all make believe,” she told him, giving him a sympathetic look as she watched him deflate.
“That’s okay, though,” he said after a moment. “It was really good.”
“I’m glad you liked it,” she responded with a smile when they reached the car. Unlocking it, they both got inside and she turned on the ignition.
“Thanks for bringing me,” he said, settling into his seat and buckling his seat belt. “And thanks for the kiss,” he added, sneaking a glance to her as he smirked jokingly.
Lily was about to open up her mouth to protest, but quickly noted the sly look on his face and closed her mouth, looking back ahead. “Yeah, yeah…” she murmured grudgingly, unable to keep a small smile off of her face.
Things were certainly looking up.
Hope you’re liking it so far! This story is so much fun for me to write, though it’s taking quite a bit of research to ensure that I have everything correct for the year. There are lots of fun scenes to come, so I hope you’re looking forward to those! Drop me a review and let me know what you think so far.
Until next time,
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