Chapter 2 : Chapter 2
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James Potter is dead. He is dead. He is dead?
Oh Godric, he is dead.
James Potter is dead.
No. That sounds wrong. That sentence shouldn’t exist. James Potter shouldn’t be dead. He can’t be dead.
This is all wrong.
It has been three days. Seventy-two of the longest hours of my life. Four thousand three hundred and twenty minutes that James Potter has been gone.
And with every second that passes it seems to hurt more. I feel numb. Everyday that passes without him, I feel number than before.
People talk to me, but I don’t hear what they say. There is a report done,, extensive lectures about safety precautions at the school, an interview with the Daily Prophet.
Everything is such a blur that I can’t pick out details, can’t remember things I should be able to. I think I go to classes, but I’m not entirely sure. I can’t remember. The three remaining Marauders and Mary are with me constantly though I barely notice them. I’m completely lost in my head.
“It’s not your fault, Lily,” they say. It’s all they ever say to me anymore.
But I know the truth. And so do they.
It is completely my fault. James Potter is dead because of me.
“I’m really starting to worry about her,” Mary says to Remus one night in the common room.
“She’ll come around soon enough,” Peter says in a hushed voice, casting me a furtive look.
I am sitting right next to them, yet they’re talking about me like I’m not. Although, admittedly I haven’t responded to anyone since it happened.
“Lily, you need to snap out of this,” Sirius places a comforting hand over mine as he leans forward towards me.
I stare blankly at him. How are they so damn nonchalant about his death? They don’t seem affected at all. Aren’t they supposed to be best friends? Like brothers… that’s what James told me once. He and Sirius are—were like brothers, so why isn’t he buried in grief like I am?
Why aren’t any of them going crazy with grief? Why aren’t they crying themselves to sleep every night? Why aren’t they unable to concentrate on anything?
It’s like they don’t care at all. It is all so wrong.
Without saying a word to my friends, I push myself up from the chair I’ve been sitting in and head up to my dorm where I collapse on my bed.
This isn’t the way things were supposed to happen.
James wasn’t supposed to die.
He was supposed to ask me out one more time. He was supposed to get me Forget-Me-Nots and I was supposed to say yes.
All those years I said no… well, if I’d have known his time was coming to an end, would I have said yes? Said yes and had a few wonderful months with him? Or would I have said no anyways, to spare myself the pain of losing him after I’d let myself finally feel something for him…
The yellow asphodel plant still sits on my nightstand. It is beginning to dry out, its green leaves beginning to curl and crumble. I can’t bring myself to get rid of it.
I don’t know how long I stare at the plant. I think I hear Mary come in at one point but I don’t say anything and neither does she.
I let the tears flow freely down my cheeks as I think about James. I can’t sleep. I haven’t been able to sleep since it happened. I’m scared that I’ll dream about him… and that is dangerous. It’s bad enough just to think about him.
I sit up, grabbing my Charms book from my trunk and hurry down the stairs to the common room. If I’m not going to sleep, at least I can catch up on some homework. Maybe it will take my mind off things…
I reach the bottom of the stairs, looking around to make sure there are no students lingering and I stop when I spot someone sitting by the fire.
The glow from the flames casts the student into a harsh silhouette, illuminating the untidy shock of dark hair that sends a painful jolt through me. It’s just like James’s…
The sound of my footsteps alerts the boy to my presence and he turns to look at me, his black-framed glasses glinting in the dim light and his mouth pulling up on one side in that heart-wrenching smile that is so familiar to me.
It can’t be—
“James,” my breath comes out in a whoosh, my heart kicking into overdrive.
This is impossible—absolutely mad. It’s a trick. He’s dead, gone. He can’t be here.
“Alright, Evans?” He responds with the playful confidence that only his voice could carry. Just the sound of it sends shivers through me. It’s his voice. Not even a dream can imitate it that perfectly.
“This is impossible,” I stutter, not moving from where I stand at the base of the staircase.
James’s eyebrows pull together and his smile vanishes. “Why?”
“Because you’re dead,” I say, my voice breaking. “I saw you die.”
James rolls his hazel eyes in a way that used to make my blood boil.
“If I’m dead, then how am I sitting here right now?” James asks blandly, his eyebrows raising expectantly at me.
“Because you’ve come back to haunt me?” I ask weakly and James laughs. I let myself get lost in the sound, closing my eyes and trying to memorize that booming laugh of his. It’s a painful sound, sending a hundred memories gushing through me but I cling to it all the same.
“Lily, come here,” James smiles, patting the seat cushion next to me.
I move numbly forward, but carefully. I’m terrified that one wrong move will make him disappear. I drop down onto the couch next to him, his proximity sending an electric current through my very soul.
He reaches out a hand and grabs my shaking one. My body feels like it has been lit on fire with his touch.
“If I were a ghost, would you be able to feel that?” James smirks, his calloused fingers lacing between mine. He pulls our hands to his face, resting my palm against his cheek. He seems so real. His touch, his laugh… But I saw him die. I was at his funeral. I saw him buried…
“This still doesn’t change the fact that I saw you die,” I whisper and James lets go of my hand. I miss his touch immediately but he reaches into his pocket and pulls out something small and square.
“Well then I’ll prove it. I’ll tell you something only I would know,” James grins cheekily at me as he holds up the object to my face. I see my own pale and terrified face reflecting back at me in the small mirror. “See this?”
I nod, waiting for his explanation.
“It’s a two-way mirror,” James says, his hazel eyes boring into mine.
“I don’t understand…” I say, gazing down at the small mirror.
“Sirius has the other one. The other Marauders and I are the only ones who know about the mirror. They’ll have to believe you. And if they doesn’t, say my name into it and I’ll appear. I promise you, I’ll appear,” James explains and I narrow my eyes at him…
“Why don’t we just go up to their dorm right now and tell them you’re alive,” I ask, confused by what James is telling me about the mirror. He’s talking like he won’t be around to tell them…
“Lily,” James ignores my confused mutterings, slipping the mirror back into his pocket and grabbing me gently by the shoulders. “There’s just one more thing I want you to do…”
“Anything,” I promise abruptly and his mouth twitches towards a smile.
“I want you to wake up,” he says quietly, his smile fading completely.
“Wake up?” I repeat, confusion coloring my expression. “James, what are you talking about?”
“Wake up, Lily,” James repeats, looking directly into my eyes. “Wake up.”
I jerk myself upright, gasping as the sunlight streaming into my dorm room hits me full-force.
I stare at the curtains around my bed as it all sinks in. It was just a dream… but it seemed so real! He had been there, I had heard him, I had felt him…
It can’t have just been a dream.
I fling my covers off me, throwing open the curtains to find Mary combing her blond hair in front of her mirror.
“Morning, Lily,” Mary says carefully, eying my disheveled state in the mirror.
“Lily, are you alright?” Mary asks, turning around to face me. “You look like you’ve just seen a ghost.”
Oh, ha ha. Very funny, Mary.
“I… I need to find Sirius,” I say, my voice hoarse from sleeping.
“Well, he’s probably in their dorm, isn’t he?” Mary says slowly, narrowing her eyes at me. “Why d’you need to find him?”
“I just need to figure something out,” I mumble as I hurry towards the door, not even bothering to change out of my pajamas.
Mary follows curiously after me as I take the steps to the boys dorm two at a time. I push open their door to find all three Marauders in a pile on the floor.
“What on earth is going on in here?” Mary gasps at the sight and the Marauders turn their heads towards us from their wrestling match on the floor.
“Pete found a chocolate frog in his trunk,” Remus grunts as Sirius elbows him in the neck.
“So you’re wrestling for it?” Mary guesses, rolling her eyes at the boys.
Remus responds by kicking Peter in the shin and Mary lets out an impatient sigh.
“For Merlin’s sake, its just chocolate,” I huff, crossing my arms and the Marauders freeze, looking over at us with scandalized expressions on their faces.
“Just chocolate?” Peter asks, his voice incredulous.
“How dare you,” Remus glares at me.
“The nerve,” Sirius sniffs.
Mary and I exchange an exasperated look and I turn back to the boys.
“There’s something important I need to talk to you about so if you stop wrestling right now I’ll buy you each ten chocolate frogs next time we’re in Hogsmeade,” I say and the three boys scramble away from each other.
“Fine. What is so important?” Sirius asks as Remus idly picks pieces of lint from Peter’s hair.
“I don’t think James is dead,” I say bluntly and I watch as all of their eyes widened in shock at my words.
“Lily…” Sirius says, frowning slightly. Pain flashes across his face and I almost regret what I said. Almost. “We were all there… we saw him die. We saw him buried.”
“I had a dream last night,” I go on, “and James was in it. He was real. He was alive.”
“Lily, it was just a dream,” Remus says in a calming voice and I scowl at him.
“It wasn’t!” I insist. “He’s still alive. I know it. He’s trying to reach me through my dreams.”
I sound absolutely crazy. Even I can see that… but it’s true.
“Lily, I think you’re just overly stressed,” Peter ventures, and the other two boys nod in agreement.
“I’m telling you, he’s still alive,” I press.
“Wow, you’re right,” Sirius rolls his eyes at me. “Maybe we accidentally buried him alive. Never mind the great, bloody fang that was stuck through him.”
I stare at him for a moment in disbelief before exploding in a rage.
“How in Merlin’s name can you joke about this?” I shriek at him. “You three sit around, making jokes and wresting over chocolate frogs like nothing even happened. Don’t you even care that your best friend is dead?”
“Of course we care,” Sirius hisses at me and I shrink back from the venom in his voice. “Don’t think for one second that you’re the only one who cares, Evans. Just because we don’t mope around all the time doesn’t mean we aren’t in pain. Talking about him, thinking about him, it hurts too much. And you standing here, telling us he’s alive is just driving the knife in deeper.”
"But I can prove it. I can prove he’s still alive,” I insist, taking a step towards Sirius. “He told me about your two-way mirror. He said I could prove he’s still alive if you have the mirror.”
Remus and Peter exchange a look at the mention of the mirror, but Sirius’s eyes widened even further. He doesn’t move for a moment and then shoves his hand into his pocket and pulls out the mirror.
“How did you know about the mirror?” Sirius asks me quietly, all the anger in his voice gone now.
“He told me about it, in my dream,” I respond, dropping my eyes from his face to the mirror.
I reach out a tentative hand and Sirius gently drops the mirror into my open palm. I hold the glass up to my face, my heart beating wildly in my chest.
“James?” I say clearly into the mirror. He has to appear. He promised.
The mirror only reflects my face. I keep waiting, my breath fogging up the glass.
“Lily, James isn’t going to appear,” Sirius says quietly, his silver eyes looking at me sadly.
“He promised,” I stutter, looking back down at the small square mirror. “He—he promised he’d appear.”
“He’s not there, Lily,” Sirius says forcefully, gripping me by the shoulders.
“He’s not dead! I’m telling you, how else would I have known about the mirror then?” I ask, panic edging its way into my voice.
“He must have told you before he died,” Remus answers me gravely. “What you saw in your dream… it was just that: a dream. You need to accept that he’s gone."
“And have you? Have you accepted that he’s gone?” I ask Sirius quietly as he drops his hands to his side.
My eyes flit between each of the boys as they all nod gravely at me.
“Well, I’m not giving up on him that easily,” I say stubbornly, shoving Sirius’s mirror into my pocket before turning on my heel and slamming the door behind me.
A/N: Hello everyone! Sorry about the long delay after the first chapter, I meant to post this before the queue closure and then life got crazy. Also, I wanted to really thank those of you who've left reviews for this story, it means so much to me! And I'm glad you're all enjoying it so far!
So here's the second chapter! And we're adding a bit of mystery in!
So do you think James is REALLY dead?
Did Lily dream all that or did James REALLY appear to her?
More mystery to come :) Leave a review!
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