Five Minutes

Chapter 42

Disclaimer; I don't own the wizarding world of Harry Potter or any of the characters in it. I wish I did. But I don't.

Hello reader!

Here's chapter Forty-Two!

Hope you enjoy it!

Chapter Forty-Two

After just one day back at school, the students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry had quickly gotten back into the swing of their lessons. It wasn't that hard for the seventh years as their timetables were exactly the same as they were for the previous year. In fact, after just one lesson filled day back at school, they all felt as if they had never left. If they were honest, they were all extremely happy that it was Friday, meaning that they had the whole weekend to recover from their first day. All their teachers, at least all the teachers they had seen so far, were trying to impress on them the seriousness that their last year brought. They had N.E.W.T's coming up in just over nine and a half months but, the way that their teachers were going on about them, you'd think that they were tomorrow.

This wasn't the most urgent thing in some people's lives though. Lily was extremely nervous about her first official meeting with the prefects of the school. She was in the transfiguration classroom, which was usually leant out for this purpose, and she was pacing the floor wringing her hands.

'Calm down!' James said to her. He was sat down at the long rectangular table that was in the middle of the floor. He was leaning back in his chair with his feet up on the table playing with a snitch. He was the picture of relaxation, completely the opposite of Lily.

'What if they have a problem with the patrol rota we've written?' Lily asked, brushing her hair back from her face and putting it behind her ears.

'Then they'll just have to deal with it.' James replied simply, letting his snitch fly away a little bit before capturing it and repeating the process again.

'We can't ask them to deal with it!' Lily sighed in agitation, flopping down in the chair next to James with her head in her hands, 'What if they have other things that they need to do like homework or writing to their families! I don't want to be the cause of tearing a family apart and-'

'Lily.' James said, taking her hands down from her face and gripping them supportively in his hands. He had let his snitch fly away up into the ceiling of the class room and had taken his legs off of the table so he was sitting properly. He looked into her eyes. 'You have to calm down. Everything will be alright. No one will have a problem with the rota, you won't stop anyone writing to their families and I doubt that they do their homework anyway.'

'They aren't you. They all do their homework.' Lily responded through gritted teeth, not taking her hands out of James' grasp.

'I'm pretty sure that they don't.' James laughed, releasing Lily's hands and returning to his previous position.

Lily tucked her hair behind her ears again, still completely stressed out, and stood up to pace the room once more. James may not be as anxious about this meeting as she was but she knew what was at stake here. She had been a prefect for two years before becoming head girl and had sat through these meetings before. If the head boy and head girl had made a weak or bad impression to their prefects, whether by organising a completely unworkable rota or by being stuck up idiots, they usually lost any respect they had for the whole year. If their first impression was bad then they risked having a team who believed they could walk all over them. Lily didn't want this to happen to her as head girl. Her last year was going to be stressful enough already with N.E.W.T's without having the prefects adding to it.

Lily came to an immediate halt in her pacing as the door opened. The first prefect was here. She looked to see who it was. It was only Remus Lupin. Lily sighed and began to pace again.

'What's going on?' Remus asked James mutedly as he sat down on the table next to James' feet.

'Lily's stressing out.' James replied in a nonchalant, matter-of-fact manner.

'Well someone has too!' Lily snapped at him as he smiled back at her insolently. She shook her head and once more, tucked her hair behind her ears. She wished she'd put a headband on. If she had she wouldn't have to keep tucking her hair behind her ears like an idiot. The annoying thing was she had a new headband which would match her earrings perfectly. It was a deep blue band with a small white bow on it. It would have been perfect.

She shook her head of these thoughts. Here she was about to take a prefects meeting for the first time in her life and she was thinking about headbands. She had been so intent in her ridiculous thoughts she hadn't noticed that Remus had levitated James into the air to help him catch his snitch. As she stood and watched them in amusement, some of the prefects filed in. Well, their first impression of their head students would be different to say the least.

As soon as all the prefects were settled and seated and James was back on the floor, he and Lily started the meeting. Everything went well which was to be expected. They started by having everyone tell James who they were as he still had no idea. After they had told him though, he still had no idea. Instead he decided to call them Ravenclaw Prefect one through four, Hufflepuff Prefect one through four, Slytherin Prefect one through four, Gryffindor Prefect one and two and Remus.

'Feel privileged Remus!' he said, pointing to him, 'I know your name.'

'I'd be worried if you didn't we've been friends for seven years.' Remus replied with a smile. He was completely at ease in this meeting, leaning back in his chair with his arms folded.

Continuing with the meeting, Lily informed the prefects of the patrol rota she and James had worked out for the week just before the meeting. She went through it with them as James put in the odd sarcastic comment providing the entertainment for the meeting. Lily just let him get on with it. His comments made her relax slightly so they really didn't bother her.

After they had gone through this schedule, Lily asked if anyone had a problem with it. One of the Hufflepuff prefects spoke up and asked if they could swap with someone as they had Quidditch try-outs the following day. Lily consented to change it but James was a bit more stubborn.

'I wouldn't worry about the try-outs Hufflepuff prefect number two because Gryffindor is going to win hands down.' James said cockily, leaning back in his chair and putting his hands on the table. Unfortunately, he leant too far back in his chair and fell off of it.

'If you sit on your broom the way you sit on chairs I think we have a fair chance.' the Hufflepuff prefect said cheekily.

James pulled himself up on the table, rearranging his glasses and running a hand through his hair. He then turned to Lily and said, 'I like her.'

Lily shook her head at him and rolled her eyes. She asked the girl when she would prefer to take her patrol. Lily took down the girl's suggestion and said she would try and rearrange it for her so that she would have the evening free to prepare for her Quidditch try-outs. She then asked if anyone had any dates that they couldn't do that week so that they could try and change the rota to suit them.

Usually, in these meetings, Remus would have been the one with the problem with the rota, but not this time. James had obviously taken care of that aspect. He didn't have to ask for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday off for the full moon and make up some ridiculous story about why. However, he thought he may need to just ask for the Saturday off for recovery time. Remus was about to say something but, upon receiving a look from James, he knew that it would all be taken care of. It might even be possible that he would never have to ask to be excused from certain dates again as James would take care of it for him. It was a welcome relief.

After everyone had given in the dates which they couldn't do that week, James and Lily said goodbye to the prefects and let them go. This left the pair of them alone to reorganise the rota for the week.

'Ok.' Lily said, pushing her hair back out of her face, 'That went well.' she said to James, looking for his agreement.

'Yes it did.' James agreed, moving his chair a bit closer to hers, 'You did very well.'

'Thank you.' Lily said. She looked into his eyes for a couple of seconds before exhaling quickly, wanting to get on with creating their rota, 'Right. Let's redo this. Which dates do you want to do again?'

'Err…' James said, looking over the blank timetable. Remus needed the full moon off and enough time to recover from the experience so he decided it would be best to give him the weekend off as well to recuperate. That way, he would have the full moon off and the two days after it. They would do their patrols earlier in that week. 'Me and Remus will do these.' he said, pointing to the dates he had chosen.

Lily hesitated. 'Do you think it's wise for you and Remus to do patrol together?' she asked him, voicing the concern she had already pointed out earlier, biting her lower lip, 'You two. Patrolling together. Can the school handle it?'

'It'll be fine.' James laughed, taking the quill off of her and writing his and Remus' names into the blank boxes, 'Which did you want to do?' he asked her, taking over the writing aspect of creating the patrol rota.

'These.' Lily said pointing to the two boxes after the ones that James had chosen.

After they had written in the dates that they wanted to take patrol, they wrote in the rest of the prefects patrol dates, ensuring that they had made sure that nobody was doing any dates that they couldn't do.

It took them half an hour to finish the prefect's rota for the week and Lily's hair fell over her face again. Not knowing what possessed him to do so, James smiled crookedly and reached forwards to tuck the strand of hair behind her ear. He obviously caught her off guard because as soon as he did, he saw her shiver at his touch and blush slightly. His breathing started to get heavier and his face became serious as he couldn't believe what he was about to say. All he knew was that this had gone on long enough and he couldn't handle it anymore. And through a surge of adrenaline, he thought something needed to be done.

'You know Lily,' he began softly, capturing her attention, 'last year you asked me not to ask you out and I respected that. Even after I found out you liked me I did nothing. Then I tried to kiss you and you pulled away and it seemed like you just wanted to be friends so I stopped hoping that you would change your mind too. Then we had lunch in the summer and this morning when I said we should do it again you said maybe and I just can't shake the feeling that whatever this is between us isn't going to go away. I don't want to do anything to jeopardise our friendship but…I can't stop myself anymore. Lily I want you to go out with me. Just one date. Will you go out with me? Please?' he asked her, almost begging for her to say yes.

Her mouth fell open slightly in shock and she said nothing. She didn't have time. At the exact moment she was about to answer, Sirius entered the room in a dizzy excitement.

'Prongs! Prongs!' Sirius panted as he rushed towards James' back.

James had still not turned around to face his obviously ecstatic best friend though. Instead he continued to stare intensely into Lily's eyes waiting for an answer. Lily stared back at him saying nothing. She didn't want to in front of Sirius. Plus she had no idea what she wanted to say. She only knew that she wanted to say something.

'Prongs!' Sirius continued, not noticing what he was interrupting, 'Wormy is about to ask Mary McDonald out! You have to come see this!'

James searched Lily's face as he spoke to Sirius. 'Can it wait?' he asked in hope.

'Err, no!' Sirius answered as if the urgency of the situation was clearly apparent, 'Come on! He's asking her now! This is a once in a life time experience my friend!'

'It's alright. You can go.' Lily said finally. She saw James visibly deflate. He slouched slightly into his chair and turned his face away with disappearing lips, a slight frown and sad eyes. She had unintentionally hurt him with her initial statement. But she wasn't finished. 'You can meet me back here after you've finished to…finish the rotas.'

James' lips reappeared again as it was his turn to let his mouth drop slightly in shock. He was not smiling but you could see his hope was reignited. 'I'll be back soon then.' he said as he got up to leave with Sirius, 'Just…think about what I said ok?' he said to her, praying that she would think about what he had said the way he hoped. He wished to receive the answer he wanted but he would have to wait half an hour to find out.

Severus sat down at the Slytherin table in the great hall to eat his supper. He was one of the last people in the school to come and eat. There was hardly anyone left in the hall at this time. Apart from him, there were a couple of people over at the Hufflepuff table, a few at the Ravenclaw table and hardly any Gryffindor's. He was the only one at the Slytherin table, but that didn't last long. Avery, Mulciber and Bellatrix Black came to sit next to him, acting, as they always did, as if they were the be all and end all of civilisation.

'Have you seen the Daily Prophet?' Avery asked him as he climbed over the bench to sit next to Severus.

'Yes.' Severus replied with a stony face, not looking at any of his so-called friends but instead staring straight ahead and gripping his fork tightly, 'There's nothing in it.'

'Exactly.' Mulciber said, moving into Severus' eye line so that he had no choice but to look at him, 'The Daily Prophet have gone from reporting everything that the Dark Lord has done to reporting, well, nothing.'

Severus didn't answer. Instead he started to fill his plate with the food that had appeared in front of him. He scooped out some roast potatoes and some vegetables onto his plate. He was about to grab a chicken drumstick when the one he was about to pick up was moved away from him.

'That was mine.' Severus snapped at Mulciber who had just taken his chicken drumstick.

'I didn't see your name on it.' Mulciber retaliated, taking a mammoth sized bite out of the chicken leg. With his mouth full, he continued to talk, 'Don't you get what this means?' he asked Severus who was now scowling at him for taking his chicken.

'What?' he spat, wishing that they would leave him in peace to eat.

They were supposed to be his friends but he thought of them more as nuisances. His 'friendship' with them was nothing compared to his past friendship with Lily. He hated spending time with his fellow Slytherin's whereas he felt that he could have spent a lifetime with Lily. He looked upon talking to Avery, Mulciber and Bellatrix, especially Bellatrix, as a chore. Their conversations were laboured and centred around one topic. The topic he didn't mind, it was the company and the strenuous speech. He would much rather be in a deep conversation with Lily. When they were friends, their conversations never lagged, at least not for the first four years. Things had started to change in their fifth year which Severus fully blamed himself for. Still, he would much rather be talking to Lily than Mulciber, Avery and Bellatrix.

'The Ministry is covering up our movements.' Bellatrix announced happily, clapping her hands together like a small child.

'Will you keep your voice down!' Severus hissed at her, grabbing the sleeves of her robes and pulling her hands apart to stop her clapping, 'The Dark Lord won't thank you for announcing our status to the whole school.'

Bellatrix snatched her hands away from Severus as if they were dirty and sneered at him like he was dirt. 'Don't touch me.' she snarled at him.

'Don't imply that the Ministry is covering up our movements then.' Severus retaliated with just as much venom as Bellatrix had dished out to him, 'They aren't covering up our movements they're covering up the Dark Lords and those around him. We're stuck here in this dismal school. We haven't done anything!'

Bellatrix snapped her jaws at him like a dog, her heavy eyebrows almost covering her eyes and her intensely black and frizzy hair falling over her face. She didn't like being spoken to like that. Especially by somebody who had only become a death eater after her. She was the prized one in this rag tag group. She was the one with full devotion to Voldemort and, if the Dark Lord hadn't insisted on the seventh years staying in school, (no one could quite work out why), then she was sure to be the first one by his side to do his bidding. In her opinion, he was everything a wizard should be and everyone should try to be more like him.

'I've done something!' Bellatrix boasted, 'Even you've actually done something!' she continued in reference to the two victims who had met their demise at their hands, 'It's these two that have been too chicken to do anything!'

'The deadline isn't up yet!' Avery said, moving his face so that he was only an inch or so away from Bellatrix, spitting at her, 'We have time.'

'Not much.' Bellatrix taunted, not fazed at all by Avery's proximity to her face. Instead, she revelled in it, knowing that he would back down before she did. Her eyes widened in a threatening way and her nostrils flared. It wasn't long till Avery backed away from her and she looked up with an odd pride at being able to scare away one of her fellow Slytherin's.

'We'll get it done.' Mulciber said, staring at Bellatrix with a placid but evil look.

'Well I suggest you get on with it!' Bellatrix snapped back.

'And I suggest you stop talking about this.' Severus said to the group, still scowling. He was attempting to eat and they were disturbing him.

Mulciber and Avery looked at each other with sneers. They didn't particularly want to mess with Severus Snape. He was into some creepy stuff because he was a creepy bloke, even in their eyes. He was particularly skilled at the dark arts so, when he came into the last meeting of the summer and announced that he had killed, they weren't particularly surprised. After all, he had almost killed Avery once in a potions lesson, almost stabbed him with a knife and was constantly pushing them around. Also, he always had his nose in his book, creating spells and potions. But the oddest thing about Severus Snape, at least the oddest thing about him to Avery and Mulciber, was the fact that he was a loner. He used people. He didn't have friends.

'Didn't you enjoy the thrill Snape?' Bellatrix asked him in an evil whisper.

Severus put down his fork and started to breath heavily. He didn't like this topic.

'It was a great feeling; killing someone.' Bellatrix continued, 'Staring at them and uttering those forbidden words. You're whole body trembling with excitement as the curse rose from within you and forced its way out of your wand. The jet of green light hitting your unwitting victim. Their scream just before it does. Their eyes widening and then, at the moment of impact, the light in their eyes vanishing. The lifeless body falling to the ground. But most of all, the power you feel when-'

'Will you shut up!' Severus snapped standing up and taking his fork up to her throat.

She started to breathe heavily a flicker of fear in her eyes which quickly disappeared only to be replaced with a daring look. She smiled and licked her teeth, moving her jaw slightly. 'Go on.' she taunted, 'Do it. Maybe then you'll actually convince me that you did what you said.'

'The Dark Lord believes it.' Severus hissed in her face, his fork now touching her neck.

'The Dark Lord may be mistaken-'

'The Dark Lord knows all!' Severus snapped in a whisper, his fork now pressing into Bellatrix's neck, forming four little white dots where the prongs were stabbing her, 'Don't question the Dark Lord Black or it might just be the last thing you do.'

Severus pulled his fork away from Bellatrix's neck, slammed it down on the table, capturing the attention of everyone who was still in the hall, and stormed off. He steam-rolled down the aisle between the Slytherin table and the Gryffindor table, his robes billowing out behind him as he went. Striding out into the entrance hall, he looked outside into the courtyard. It was empty; a great place to be alone.

He walked out into the open air, the harsh Scottish wind whipping his face and drying out his greasy black hair which usually fell in curtains around it. He went and sat down on one of the stone benches which were underneath one of the three trees in the courtyard. It was cold but Severus soon got used to it.

Inhaling deeply, Severus tried cleared his mind of the, what could only be described as an argument, he had just had with Bellatrix Black. Why she had to go on about killing like that he would never understand. Yes he had taken a life but, unlike Bellatrix, he hadn't found an excitable thrill in the process. He hadn't felt anything at all. She had gone on about it as if killing was what her life was about. Yes killing was now a part of Severus' life, that he couldn't deny, but he didn't want it to be the reason he lived as Bellatrix had made it out to be. When she talked about it, it seemed as if she had to kill so that she could live. As if it made her heart beat. Severus wasn't like this.

When he had stood over the bloody and cut body that he had killed, he had felt nothing. No remorse. No thrill. Nothing. If anything he had felt rather sick at the sight of it. In fact, when he walked past it on the way home, he had been sick at the sight of it. A mangled corpse swimming in a pool of deep, red blood with flies and ants and all other insects swarming around it. They were feasting in the dying flesh which, by the time he had returned from his walk in the park, had gone cold.

He still felt nothing when he heard the muggle police sirens in the middle of the night. He had just lain in his bed staring at the ceiling, wondering why James Potter had been outside Lily's house that day. That was what was plaguing his mind. There were no thoughts of his victim. No wonderings as to whether he had somebody he loved or who loved him. No thoughts of what his family would think. No. Severus only had selfish wonderings. Those of Lily and those of being branded with the dark mark thanks to his work.

He rolled up the sleeve on his left arm and looked at the black ink that now covered his forearm. It was a black skull with a snake protruding out of it mouth. It was an ugly tattoo that Severus was quite proud to have. He traced the outline of it with his finger. He wouldn't have gotten it if he hadn't killed. The only problem in his mind, the real reason why he wished Bellatrix would stop gloating about the fact that they had both now officially joined the death eaters, was Lily's face. He had done the unthinkable, taking an innocents life, and he knew that Lily would find it despicable and she would genuinely hate him for it. All he could see in his mind was Lily shaking her head, her face filled with loathing and disappointment.

For the second time that evening, Lily was pacing the floor wringing her hands. She was still in the transfiguration classroom where they had just held their first prefects meeting and she was still nervous. Only this time, it was for a completely different reason.

The door opened and the reason for her nerves stepped in, softly closing the door behind him.

'Hey.' James said, not actually moving away from the door but instead still gripping the handle tightly as if he was keeping his options open. He could bolt if he wanted too. If he didn't get the answer he needed.

'Hi.' Lily replied, the tension in the room blatantly obvious. She tried to break it. 'So what did Mary say when Pettigrew asked her out?'

James smiled with a laugh. He knew she was trying to ease the tension and he was thankful for it if he was perfectly honest. 'She said no to him.' he said as he shoved his hands into his trouser pockets, (he had ditched his robes in the common room) and walked a bit further into the room, 'We knew she would really.'

'Yeah.' Lily agreed, 'Pettigrew doesn't really seem to be her type.'

'Pete isn't anyone's type.' James smirked, 'Poor guy. He knew she'd say no.'

'Then why did he ask.' Lily queried.

James shrugged and looked at her emerald green eyes. 'Sometimes you just gotta ask.'

They smiled at each other and it took a raise of James' eyebrows for Lily to realise that he was waiting for her to say something. He had left her thinking about a very specific question and he wanted an answer. He deserved an answer. He had waited a long time.

'Ok.' Lily said with a deep breath, unsure of how to start this. She had gone over this conversation in her head so many times over the past few months but now it was here, really here, she had no idea what to say. She thought she'd start with just establishing their feelings. Yes, that was a safe bet. Establish where they both were. It would make things easier. 'So,' she said, 'you like me?'

'I think that's been obvious for a while now.' James nodded, 'Around six years to be precise.'

Lily smiled with a small unsure laugh. 'Ok.' she began again, 'So you like me and I like you.'

'I'm sorry.' James said sincerely and suddenly.

Lily looked extremely confused. What was he sorry about? Sorry that she liked him? That would be odd as that was what he had wanted for many years. Anyone in the school could tell you that. If you walked up to any of the students in Hogwarts and asked them, 'what does James Potter want?' the inevitable reply would be 'Lily Evans to go out with him'. Everyone would reply with that answer, even if some were a bit begrudgingly. So him apologising for her liking him made no sense. She had to ask what he meant as this was really puzzling her. 'What?' she questioned.

'I'm sorry.' James repeated, still giving no hints as to what he was apologising for.

'What?' Lily asked again, still confused as James had made no elaborations and she was now doubly confused as to what he was doing.

'You see,' James said, walking forwards cautiously, 'that's funny because last year when I said the same thing in the Owlery, you said 'I'm sorry' to me. See, that's funny.'

Lily blinked a couple of times before saying, 'No it's not.'

'Yeah it is see, it's this little thing called irony and-'

'James, can you just…let me talk?' Lily asked him, losing her patience and folding her arms momentarily.

James chuckled at this and motioned his hand for Lily to continue. He was just glad that the tension in the room had gone and they were now both at ease. What he didn't know was that it wouldn't last that long. The tension would soon be back.

'Right.' Lily began again, 'I'm just gonna come straight out and say this. I do want to go out with you-'



'Ah…but.' James sighed, hanging his head. He closed his eyes. He knew this was too good to be true. For one fleeting moment he thought that Lily was going to go out with him. Then she had said 'but'. It was if a knife had just slashed his hopes to pieces, wounding his soul and pride in the process.

'No, no!' Lily said walking forwards quickly towards him, knowing she had given James the wrong idea, 'This isn't a bad but, it's just a…a necessary but. At least for me it is.'

James said nothing. He was doing as Lily asked and just letting her talk but he had to know why there was a 'but' in the first place. In his version of things, Lily said yes to him, they went out and everyone was happy. Their friends were happy for them and they were happy and he was definitely happy. He would have gotten everything he wanted since his first year at Hogwarts. Her version of things was obviously different and he was curious to know why. He waited for her to explain but she just stood there and bit her lip, looking at him in nervously. He had never seen her this nervous before. In the end, James had to prompt her to continue. 'You want to go out with me but…' he said.

'Right.' Lily said, sorting through her mind to get back onto the tracks she was on before, 'But, I'd appreciate it if…we didn't tell anyone.' she finished.

James raised his eyebrows and shook his head slightly to make sure he had heard that right. Out of everything he had made up in his head that could follow the 'but' that was never on the list. 'But I'd like to take it slow' was one of the answers he had come up with. 'But I'm a bit worried' was an answer too. But nowhere on that list was the suggestion of keeping it a secret. That had never occurred to him and why would it? It was an odd request. Why did she want to keep it a secret?

'Why?' he had to ask.

'Well, it's a bit difficult to explain.' Lily said, once again wringing her hands nervously. She had to tread carefully here. This could be the limit for James and he could decide that it wasn't worth the hassle if she just wanted to keep everything a secret. She was worried he'd say no. 'You see, it's our last year at Hogwarts. I'm head girl, you're head boy and we have N.E.W.T's coming up.'

'I must say you've got much better at pointing out the obvious.' James joked, trying to ease her nerves. It didn't work. She just looked at him sharply for interrupting her again.

'Anyway!' she continued, unimpressed with James' joke, 'It's a big year.'

'I know.' James replied in mock shock and sarcasm.

'I can change my mind about you, you know.' Lily retorted.

'Ok. I'm sorry.' James apologised sincerely, 'Continue.'

'Right.' Lily went on. Now all she had to do was try and explain her reasons behind wanting to keep it all a secret, 'You see, there's a lot of pressure this year and, I don't think I can deal with everyone staring at me and talking about me which they will do if they know we're going on a date.'

'Why would anyone do that?' James asked.

'Because for six years I've said I wouldn't got out with you and you never gave up and I hate people telling me 'I told you so.' I'm quite a stubborn person you know.'

'Really?' James teased sarcastically, 'I never would have guessed!'

Lily shot him a look to tell him to shut up again. She then continued to explain all the reasons Hestia had told her why they shouldn't be together. Even though these reasons were born out of Hestia's bad break up and new permanent bad mood, they were still valid. 'None of the girls in the school will like it and they'll be horrible to me about it. Most of them will stop being my friend and they'll give me dirty looks and I don't want that to be the start of my last year. Also, how do we know that we haven't built a relationship in our head that we can't possibly live up too? Then there's the fact that we have nothing in common and-'

'Whoa, whoa.' James said, genuinely shocked at the information he was being given, 'Whoa!' he put his fingers to his forehead and then ran them through his hair. 'Where have you gotten all this from?' he asked her searchingly.

Lily took a deep breath. 'Hestia.' she said.

'Hestia as in Jones who's on my Quidditch team?' James said in more of a statement than a question. He knew the answer. 'Stop me if I'm wrong but I kind of got the feeling that she wanted us to get together.'

'She did.' Lily replied honestly in earnest, nodding her head. She then stopped nodding her head and said, 'Then she changed her mind.'

'Ok.' James said slowly.

'That's another reason why I want to keep our date a secret-'

'So we are going out on a date then?' James smiled happily. This was what he'd wanted for ages. Inside his head he was yelling, Heck yeah! Thank you Merlin!

Lily smiled in return but it wasn't as pure as James'. Her smile faltered. 'Only if we keep it a secret. You see I kind of told Hestia, after she had told me all that stuff, after that whole romantic gooey side of her was crushed by Matthew Davies, that I was…over you.' she said, pausing for a second. Then she started to ramble. 'But just to keep her happy and I didn't think that anything would happen between us anymore and I just know that if we tell her she'll probably list of all those reasons again because she's still sore about what happened between her and Matthew and I'll start to doubt it all but I don't want to doubt it all. I do want to go on a date with you but until I know that Hestia was truly wrong I don't want to tell her or anyone, because let's face it she's a gossip and it will get back to her no matter what, I just don't want her to say 'I told you so' because if there's one thing I can't stand it's-'

'Lily!' James interrupted. She had gone off on a random ramble again and he could see her reasons. He walked over to her and took her hands. 'We can keep it a secret.'

'Really?' Lily asked with a smile growing across her face.

'Yes.' James laughed, 'If it means you'll stop rambling and you'll go out with me then that is what we will do.'

'Thank you.' Lily said. She hugged him and he hugged her in return. They stayed that way for about a minute, James tangling his hands in Lily's hair and Lily breathing in the beech wood scent that James always carried with him. James was the one to pull away eventually.

'Well,' he sighed, 'I told Sirius that I'd meet him in the kitchens in ten minutes and it's been fifteen. If I don't go now he'll come up here. But I am going to hold you to our date.'

'Good.' Lily said, excitement building in her stomach.

'So…' James continued awkwardly, 'I'm gonna go.'

'Ok.' Lily replied.

'Bye.' James said, staring at her happily for a second before catching himself, running a hand through his hair, turning around and walking over to and out of the door.

Lily smiled to herself. She couldn't stop it at all. She was going on a date with James Potter. If she had gone back in time and told her fifth year self this and, well, every year before that, then she probably would have told herself that she was crazy. She would have told herself that Potter in an irresponsible, arrogant, big-headed, annoying show off. But now she knew that all of that stuff was only half true because, let's face it, James was big-headed and annoying and everything else too. It was just who he was. But, in the past year, she had gotten to know the other side of him. And that's what she would have told her fifth year self. That side of him, in her opinion, out-weighed or at least equalled, the other stuff.

Thanks for reading!

The next update will be 5th April


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