Chapter 1 : The Lake
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She laid alone on a blanket, propped up by her elbows and reading one of her favorite books, Watership Down. Even though she had read it dozens of times, she sat thoroughly engrossed in the novel as if it was her first time to read it, completely oblivious to her surroundings.
Soon, a strange buzzing began to fill her right ear. She passed off as a fly or a bee and continued her book, flipping her bright red hair over her shoulder. After a few minutes, the buzzing disappeared and she breathed a sigh of relief at her reclaimed peace. Then, the sound came back, this time maddeningly distracting. Lily got to the point where she couldn’t pay attention to her book anymore and sat up, turning her head around in search of the disruption. No bee, fly, or any other animal for that matter. Only a couple third years a length away, a group of teachers all the way up the hill, and… James Potter.
He ruffled his black hair and started to walk towards her. Lily cursed under her breath, annoyed that he would be trying to talk to her. Ever since second year, James had a massive crush on Lily and he did nothing to hide it. The way he followed her around wherever she went was strikingly similar to that of a lost puppy. For the past five years, she had ignored him, mostly because he was so arrogant. It’s not as if he is the only good quidditch player to ever grace the halls of Hogwarts, she thought sarcastically.
James sauntered up to her, a smile plastered on his face. He was carrying a blanket and a small bag in his arms, with his wand stuck behind his right ear. “Hello, Evans,” he greeted, rather enthusiastically. “Potter,” she replied with an impatient tone, “was that you making that ridiculous buzzing noise?”
“Why yes, it was.” James smiled at her as though it was the most brilliant thing he’d ever thought of.
“May I ask why?” Lily was still quite impatient with him for interrupting her afternoon. “In case you’re too thick to notice, I was reading.”
“That’s exactly why. I didn’t want to interrupt you and your book.”
Lily looked at him, still confused.
James elaborated: “Well, it’s common knowledge that you should never walk up behind someone when they’re reading. That would just be stupid. Instead, I made you stop reading so I could walk up to you without being rude. See? I was being polite.”
“Well, thank you very much for not being rude,” she said mockingly, but chuckled in spite of herself.
“You’re very welcome, Evans.” He still had that stupid grin on his face.
“So why did you walk over to me in the first place?”
“Well,” he pondered for a moment as if he wasn’t sure how to word what he was going to say. “I came to ask you if you would like to have tea with me. I promise, I won’t make fun of your dear Sev-Sev.
Lily shot him a glare at the last comment, then blatantly rejected his offer.
“So that was a yes then? Great!” he began shuffling around and unearthed the contents of his bag, including a small tea set, a tin of biscuits, and a thermos of tea.
“I said NO Potter, what about that did you not understand?” she turned around with her back to him and her arms crossed. “Boys,” she muttered under her breath.
“Biscuit?” he offered her a small cookie, completely ignoring her protest. Lily sighed loudly and turned around a bit and reluctantly accepted the biscuit and bit off a piece. Tried would be better wording, they were as hard as rocks. She quickly spit it out for fear of breaking a tooth off. “What was that? I nearly cracked a tooth! Did you get those from Hagrid?” Hagrid had a reputation for his… less than satisfactory cooking.
James looked at her with genuine bewilderment. “No,” he said, “as a matter of fact, I made them and I think they are quite good.” He bit into one with a grin but then struggled to chew the small piece in his mouth. Then, most likely for his pride, he finished off the whole biscuit with great difficulty.
“See? Dey’re bery gewd,” his speech was slightly muffled from the second biscuit he was shoving in his mouth. Lily laughed a little at the sight of him, crumbs all over his face and an amusing facial expression.
“C’mon, just admit that they are nasty and you can save yourself the torture of another one,” she was beginning to warm up to him.
He had a slightly hurt expression, but nonetheless was glad to agree. “You’re right, these are vile.”
They both looked at each other and then simultaneously burst into laughter at the situation. James grabbed another of the biscuits and then threw it as hard and far as he could into the lake. Lily giggled at him and then grabbed two, throwing them both into the lake just as James had. They continued, with fits of laughter, dancing around as they chucked every last one of the biscuits.
“Well,” Lily said after they were done, ”I know one thing.”
“And what is that? That James Potter is the most amazing person to throw biscuits with?”
“No, James Potter is possibly the most horrendous cook I have ever met.”
“Aww, Evans,” he said with mock sadness, “I’m not that bad. Here, try some tea.” He took out two teacups, some sugar, and removed the top of the thermos. “Would you like some sugar?” he asked as he poured them each a cup of tea.
“Just two cubes please, and a little cream.”
“Well I - er - kind of forgot the cream, so just sugar then.” He smiled sheepishly.
“Okay then, just sugar,” she laughed a little because of his forgetfulness. “I just have one question: did you make the tea too?”
“Yes! But you’d have to be pretty stupid to mess up tea, right? I’m pretty sure it’s safe to drink. I think.”
Lily took her cup and looked at it. This doesn’t look much like tea, she thought. Apprehensively, she took a tiny sip of the “tea”. It was less tea than it was more slightly brown sugar water. Lily smiled just to spare his feelings, but it was still obvious with the difficultly she had swallowing that the tea was also awful.
“I guess I should be kept away from the kitchen, eh?” he asked jokingly after taking a sip from his own cup and pulling a face. “That was almost as bad as the biscuits.”
Lily giggled, “Well I guess I should take care of the cooking from now on.”
James raised his eyebrows at her remark. “Hmm, ‘from now on’? Are you planning on marrying me, Lily Evans?”
“Of course that isn’t what I meant. I just meant I should be the one cooking. Not you,” she finished rather awkwardly, a blush rising in her cheeks. James still looked at her curiously, as if he were studying a new species. “C’mon, James, you know I didn’t mean it like that.”
“What if you did? What if we had more days like this?” he looked at her now with a serious expression, which was rare for James Potter.
“Well, I-uh, I don’t know. I can’t. We would never work out. You’re you and I’m, well, me,” she finished lamely.
“How do you know that, Evans? Why couldn’t we be together? We’ve obviously had fun today,” he smiled, “whose to say that we couldn’t do this again?”
Lily nervously pulled at the hem of her sleeve, unsure of what to say. “I just… don’t feel like it would be right. I don’t know why. I just can’t picture us together.” She looked at him sadly, her eyes shone as if they were trying to tell him she was sorry. But she wouldn’t say sorry, not for her feelings. That would just be lying to herself.
James sat quietly, staring at his now untouched teacup as if it were the most interesting thing in the world. It was absolutely silent outside. Most, if not all, of the students had headed back inside because it was now late afternoon. “Are you sure?” he finally asked after what seemed like an eternity. Lily shrugged her small shoulders, still looking at his face.
Neither of them spoke for a few minutes, they just sat there. Then, James looked up from his cup at then at Lily’s face. All of a sudden, he leaned in and gave her a sad peck on the cheek. Lily let out a small gasp at his action. “What was that?” she asked, surprised.
“That was goodbye,” James said stoically. He knew then that she would never want him and he had the common sense to get out of her life. He began gathering up the remnants of their afternoon, packing it back into his bag as Lily watched, speechless. James finished packing up, grabbed his blanket, and started to walk back to the castle, alone. Out of her life.
A moment passed.
Lilly was running after him at full speed.
James turned around at her shout and stared, dropping his blanket and bag in the process.
“You,” she huffed, “you don’t just walk away from me. I hate you James Potter.”
He stood there stunned. Then, she grabbed him and pressed her lips against his. James hugged Lily’s waist and lifted her up in the air, all without breaking to kiss. She could feel his smile, and she smiled too. Lily could still taste the sugary tea on his lips.
After a long time, they broke apart.
“I hate you, James Potter, for making me like you.”
Author's Note: This is my first time to ever write Jily, or any Mauraders as a matter of fact. Please tell me how you like it! :)
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