Chapter 1 : The only one.
| ||Rating: Mature||Chapter Reviews: 1|
Background: Font color:
Hope you enjoy it.
I checked my appearance one final time in the mirror. The navy blue dress that I could not remember buying worked well with my hair colour and pasty complexion, bringing out the best of my bright emerald eyes. My hair was hanging around my face in soft, loose curls.
Oh! Finally a break from death and war and Voldemort.
Though I would have preferred a day to myself, I did not mind Alice setting me up with John for this date so much, which might have something to do with the fact that I wanted to prove Alice wrong in her assumption that I wasn’t over a certain bloke. (coughJamescough) and besides, John seemed like a dateable friend. It was an added bonus that he happened to be decent looking.
When I first met John at the Auror training session, we were quite awkward with the other person’s company, especially the first time we dueled. Most of his spells were non-verbal counter spells to the attacks I threw in his direction. He was good at defense, needless to say. I tried carrying a conversation with him after the duel; I felt it could help us as a team if we were acquainted. He was too quiet for my liking. Or maybe I was used to James and his over the top display of affections. AAAAAHHHH! Stupid James. Always interfering in my non-James monologues. I could foresee his smirk well enough.
That’s when the door rang; interrupting my non-James monologues. I checked the clock hanging to my right on the cream coloured wall. 6:55. John was five minutes early. The bell rang again by the time I reached the door.
‘Coming!’ I called; it was unlike John to act impatient.
I dusted off the imaginary dust off the front of my dress, and plastered a million dollar smile to my face and swung open the door to the face of …
My million dollar smile dissolved in a millisecond only to be replaced by the yelp that escaped my lips, courtesy of the surprise of finding your long-term ex at your door step when awaiting the arrival of your newly found date.
And so I shut the door in his face, or at least tried. James’s quidditch reflexes got in the way of my plans and he forced himself into my apartment. That’s when I fully noticed the change that had encompassed him. His eyes looked tired, purple circles colouring underneath them, the thick round frames magnifying them, his face was morose, his stubble adding to the overall effect of gloominess. He looked out of place, strangely. It was like looking at the shell of his existence. Transparent. Lacking life. Like a ghost. Nothing substantial. The desperation that was evident on his face right now was not much different than the last I’d seen of him, and yet I remember the smirking-James as my James, the one that I thought loved me.
The silence lay heavy on us for an undeterminable amount of time, until I spoke.
‘Is there a reason for this pleasant surprise?’ I asked, my tone vindictive, but James remained unaffected by it.
‘Lils, we need to talk.’ He took a step forward; I crossed my arms across my chest protectively.
‘Your actions did not leave much for words.’ The familiar pang of hurt returned, rushing through my veins.
‘That’s not fair Lils, it wasn’t what it looked like.’
‘I wouldn’t have believed ANYONE had I not seen it for myself.’ I bellowed angrily.
‘Please don’t be like this, Lils.’ He replied pathetically.
‘Stop calling me THAT!’
‘Calling you what Lils?’
‘Lils?’ the qualm was obvious, which was justified, only James ever called me Lils, and I had happened to love it. The entire notion called love seemed pretty unnecessary right now.
‘YES! Stop calling me LILS!’
‘No.’ he returned disbelievingly, a heavy frown creasing his forehead, like I’d asked him to unroot a mountain from its base. As if the apocalypse had arrived and I’d told him to join the zombies.
We heard a thoart clear to our left after the final yes and its corresponding no. Well, my left and James right, for John had seemed to have slipped in through the door unnoticed and seemed uncomfortable to have been the source of intrusion of our display of immaturity.
John was dressed in a white shirt and black pants. The outfit seemed very typical for a date. But then again, I wasn’t exactly expecting him to walk in for a first date wearing a bright pink wig and red nose.
‘Who’s this joker?’
Looks like James seemed to have perceived otherwise.
‘BEHAVE James.’ I ordered, my tone reprimanding. Yes. I always wore the pants in this relationship. Or what there was once to it.
‘This is John, my date for tonight, the one you are so rudely interrupting.’ I continued, my eyes narrowing to slits.
‘You’re dating a joker?’ James commented, his dry humour, well, DRY.
‘Ahh! Sorry to interrupt this Evans, but who is this guy and why would he not stop referring to me as a joker.’
Damage, right there. Always a prominent trait Potter. At least where I was involved.
‘This is James, he’s on his way out now. Right James? ‘ I gave James a pointed look, trying to telepathically tell him to leave.
‘No. I’m not the one who should be leaving, this joker should be.’
John thought best than to reply to James childish comebacks. And so he turned to me, raising an eyebrow, this was the first time I noticed the white lilies he had brought with himself, which disturbed the exotic-personality image I had of him in my mind, with him being all reserved and respectful and giving people their personal space and just generally being unlike-James.
Seriously? White lilies, because I am Lily? Lame.
John seemed to be going on with the situation in his head, until he spoke,
‘I do not really plan on staying here watch some random bloke try and insult me childishly and watch you take his shit, so I guess I’ll just be on my way.’ John took two steps back from where he stood and slipped out of the apartment as quitely as he had entered. I rushed after him, James hot on my heels.
‘WAIT! JOHN!’ but he had already apparted away and I dropped my shoulders pathetically.
‘Knew he was no good.’ James whispered close to my ear.
If this was a few months ago, such whispering could have made an enormous grin split across my face, but all I could manage right now was a grunt. An angry, frustrated grunt.
Just because John was a decent bloke did not mean I had to be a lady too. So I did what I used to do best. I punched James, square in the face and he clutched his bleeding nose, I think I broke the darn thing.
‘Ow! Fuck Lily! Always as fiesty.’
I would have punched him again for his latest comment and the rage that consumed me but I was too busy nursing my aching knuckles. Stupid James, with his stupid strong build. Or maybe a lack of mine, since I’m the one with the aching knuckles. I pushed aside my pointless debate to use my energy to glare at James instead who now had his wand pointed to his nose, fixing it.
‘WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? CAN’T YOU MIND YOUR OWN FUCKING BUSINESS?’ I screamed in his face, my voice shrill, I was agitated beyond compare. I pushed open the door angrily and shut it with as much force as I could, in James face but the blasted bloke had already followed me in. Fail.
‘WELL! YOU ARE MY BUSINESS!’ His tone matched mine, scornful.
‘SAYS ME. HE ISN’T THE RIGHT GUY FOR YOU.’
‘AND YOU’RE THE ONE TO DECIDE THAT?’
‘YES! BECAUSE I AM.’
‘So you’re saying that the right guy for me is a cheater?’ To my own surprise, I voiced this question much softly, but even I could detect the coldness that thawed around us.
Frustrated, James ran a hand through his messy hair, making it more messier. I noticed he perhaps needed a haircut, the stubble did suit him though, but not the sullen look, no. Post-relationship James was ominous, a shell of his former reckless self.
‘Lily, please, give me one chance to explain. You walked out right away. One chance.’
He grabbed both of my hands into his own which made me feel strangely warm. Just like the old times.
I noticed the piece of thick parchment protruding beyond the depths of his pocket, I knew what it was. The Map.
The conversations around us were effortless and easygoing. Again, one of those times when we’d have a laugh, forgetting or rather ignoring the upcoming war for a few moments of bliss. Sirius’ bark-like laughter penetrated through the warm summer air. Remus smiled to himself, as did I, and we returned to the books we had been reading respectively. Peter sat with his back propped against the bark of a tree and James lay on the grass close by.
He rolled over so that he now lay on his front and propped up both elbows to support his overly-large head. A magnificent grin playing on his lips.
I don’t remember how or when the transformation occurred. The one in which James was now a tolerable topic, where his company was looked forward to and a bit of harmless joking was the best I could make of the day.
Should I blame the war again? And the inevitable death? Whose murkiness was integral?
No. I was here, out with James to push this topic in a far corner of my mind. To lock it in a box and lose the key. So I focused all my attention on the aforementioned piece of parchment instead. James was still laughing at the joke Sirius had cracked. His eyes closed as the laughter pulsated through his chest. I folded my legs underneath me from my previous crossed-legged position, being in my current position would be more useful to my usual clumsiness in pushing myself off the ground.
I leaned into James, his laughter coming to a dramatic end as he anticipated what I might do next. I reched behind him, my fingers finding the parchment, before I stood up and ran. I registered James shocked face, the slap that Sirius bestowed at the back of his head, until James dashed after me.
Though I was a bit ahead of him because of the ample amount of time he took up in being surprised, I could still feel him advancing upon me. I picked up speed, my hair slapping in my face as I turned to catch a glimpse of him. His smile matched mine, a display of pure glee.
I was soon running out of breath and James had almost reached me until I collapsed to the ground, plumenting him along-side. We lay in a tangle of limbs, the laughter ever-loud and overjoyed.
I don’t know what we were laughing so much about, it wasn’t even THAT funny. I don’t know why James had chased me, he knew well enough that I was anything but a threat to the Marauders’ possession.
But somehow, as silly as the predicament was, we lay there on the grass, our laughter booming around us, as carefree as we ever had been.
I let go of James hands as if I’d just come in contact with fire, the one that will burn me down bit by bit, the pain ever-growing.
I saw the hurt strike over James features. I turned around, away from him, but he walked around me until he was facing me again. I refused to meet his eyes, so I kept staring at the floor, blocking out his voice until he felt like nothing but a shadow in the distance, but I could still pick remnants of his speech, his apologies, his regrets, his confusion, his explanations.
I opened my purse to withdraw the key, I propped myself against the door, pushing both hands into my enormous bag to find the article to grant me entry to my flat. The door creaked a little, opening just a tad bit. Strange. James wasn’t supposed to be home, had the death eaters reached us already?
Fear gripped each nerve in my body, the chill running down my spine, my hands were trembling slightly. I pushed open the door as quietly as possible, my wand held out in front of me. If I had to die tonight, I’ll die keeping up a fight. All the lights were ignited. I heard voices coming from our bedroom, a shrilly voice, a laughter, a scowl, a moan.
What was going on?
Slowly, I pushed open this door too, to reveal a semi-dressed bare-torso James, the button of his jeans undone- and a barely dressed girl (lingerie was all that covered her skinny arse).
The girl giggled, drawing her mug closer to James who just frowned. I dropped my wand and the bags in carrying the preparatory supply for the dinner and the gift, in shock at the scene unfolding in front of me, catching the attention of the two spectators.
James quickly unwound the girl’s slimy arms from around his neck, swiftly moving towards me. Tears sprang to my eyes, James tried to clutch my wrist and I pulled away.
My eyes drifted over to the girl, I recognized her now. Eva. Eva Davidson, the last girl James dated before we got together. How brilliant? How FUCKING brilliant? He went and cheated on me on the day of our anniversary, it had been two years since the big break until we got together for good- or so I misconstrued. How STUPID could I be? And they called me the brightest witch of my age! Ha!
‘HOW COULD YOU?’I screamed, the tears flowing freely down my face now, turning around facing him. I was angry. Angry beyond compare. I was livid. I kept repeating my question to myself in my mind, HOW COULD I BE SO STUPID!?! So incredibly stupid!
‘Lils! Lils please listen to me. It’s not what you think it is, its not what it looks like, I came home early to surprise. ’
‘And what a surprise it is!’ I bellowed back, my vision was blurring because of the excessive tears flowing down my face. I was hurting; my heart was breaking bit by bit, the pain germinating in my chest excruciating.
He tried to grab my wet face in his hands, I struggled against his grip loosing physical contact for a split second and apparating away.
The last thing I saw was a horror-struck James and Eva wounding her arms around Jame’s bare torso from behind him once again, before the feeling of being sucked in a tube came over my senses until I opened my eyes to the busy streets of Diagon Alley.
Fresh tears found their way as I reminisced about my most spiteful memory. Somewhere while still being lost in thought, James’ hands had found mine again, his hold firm, not letting go. He slipped his hands up my arms, until they were resting at my forearms. My vision was turning too glassy to properly see so I kept staring at the floor, for the first time regretting not hearing James out.
I missed him. For all the nights I spent crying in my bed, wide awake, I missed him. For the streets we walked down together, hand in hand, at the numerous dates we had, I missed him when I walked down them again, alone. I missed his hold, the one that was so rigid right now. I missed his comfort, his warmth, his joviality, I missed James.
I missed telling him to keep the dishes in the dishwasher. I missed those mornings when I’d wake up next to him; and he’d place the lightest of kisses to my forehead, a goofy smile would spread across both our faces. I missed crying in his chest and the way he would hold me ever so close, afraid that I’d slip away. His words of comfort music to my ears as he’d assure me of a brighter future in these darker times when death was imminent and we had lost whatever family we had. I missed those nights, when he’d be in dead need of sleep but try and stay awake until I came home and slipped in next to him, and he’d pull me closer against him under the duvets before slipping into a dreamless, deep sleep.
I blinked away my tears, forcing myself not to spend any more; I looked up to James face. The hurt building in his eyes, reflecting the one surfacing in my green orbs, I clutched back at his hands, scared that if I let go, I’d lose myself. I was scared of going back to those lonely nights, awaiting death, welcoming it with open arms.
James’ clutched my crying face in his hands once again, a strange sense of Déjà vu taking over. The pads of his thumbs ran across my moist cheeks, underneath my wet lashes, wiping away the tears. I collapsed into his arms, weeping into his chest like all those times that I had before. James kissed the top of my head before tucking it under his chin. I gave into the sense of familiarity of being in James arms, the way his arms wound around me, holding me close. I gave into my fears, depending on James to be my knight in shining armor. But unlike all those previous times, I didn’t know if I was doing the right thing or not.
Whether this was a mistake or not, only time could tell.
If after two years, all I associate James with is happiness and content, then I’m glad I made that mistake, if all my fears are now my strength to fight for my life and the ones linked to mine, then I’m glad I made that mistake, I’m glad I made the mistake of falling in love with James and I’m glad I stuck by it.
A/N : This is one of my first attempts at fluff. Hope I did justice to it.
Please review. Xx
Other Similar Stories