Five Minutes

Chapter 4

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 Four!

Hope you enjoy it!

And thank you to Forbular for my review! Did make my day! :)

Chapter Four

Lily Evans' summer was dull to say the least. She had no-one to talk to or go out with as her plans with Hestia and Alice had been torn to shreds due to unforeseen circumstances. Hestia's mother had been taken ill and Alice's parents had decided that it was high time they went to see some of their relatives in Ireland. So instead of going shopping with her friends like Lily had planned to, she was now forced to sit in her room all day and do anything she could find to amuse herself. She spent most of her time reading some of her favourite stories, watching video cassettes on the new VCR that her parents had bought and writing to her friends, sending her letters off via owl, though she barely received any in return.

Earlier in the summer, her mother had suggested that she take a walk down to the shops with her sister Petunia to fetch some tea, but Petunia had flat out refused to go. She was two years older than Lily and although they had been very close before Lily had been accepted into Hogwarts, they rarely spoke now. She had become to hate her sister and all that she had become, her hatred stemming from the jealousy she had for her sister's magical abilities. So Lily's older sister ignored her during the summers she spent at home and just pretended that she wasn't there.

As Lily had fallen out with Severus during the final week of Hogwarts as well, she didn't have the friend down the street and by the river who she would usually hang out with. The fact that she was no longer speaking to him didn't stop him from pestering her in his attempts to apologise again. The first week she had been home, Lily decided that she would go to the park that her and Petunia used to play in, only to find Severus waiting there for here. At the first sight of him, she had doubled back and gone home again. The second week of her holiday, he had begun to throw stones at her bedroom window every night just to try and get her attention. He stopped this after a fortnight had passed because one of the stones he had thrown had broken her window and had had to be replaced. In her fourth week at home, she had given up going out of her house if it wasn't into their garden, as she soon realised that he had begun to sit on the wall each day to wait for her to appear. In Lily's mind, she had hoped that by the fifth week of the holidays, he would have gotten the message, but he hadn't.

When her owl arrived from Hogwarts that week, with her school list and O.W.L results, Lily noticed that he was still sitting on the wall just outside her house. She sighed and shook her head whilst opening the kitchen window to let the owl through. This didn't go unnoticed by Severus and he immediately leapt of the wall to go and talk to her. Before he could get there however, she had closed the window and turned around so that her back was facing him.

She went to sit down at the table where her family was still eating breakfast and began to tear open the letter.

'What's that sweet-pea?' her father asked her, looking over his morning paper to see what she had in her hand.

'It's my letter from Hogwarts and my O.W.L results.' she said nervously. Whilst she took out the pieces of parchment with trembling hands, Petunia scoffed and left the table. Lily looked after her and sighed before returning to her post.

She read her exam results first:

Ordinary Wizarding Level Results

Pass Grades:

Outstanding (O)

Exceeds Expectations (E)

Acceptable (A)

Fail Grades:

Poor (P)

Dreadful (D)

Troll (T)

Lily Evans has achieved:

Ancient Runes: O

Astronomy: O

Arithmancy: O

Charms: O

Defence Against the Dark Arts: O

Herbology: O

History of Magic: O

Potions: O

Transfiguration: E

'How'd you do?' her mother asked her excitedly, trying to catch a glimpse of the piece of parchment she had in her hands.

'Better than I thought, but I didn't get what I wanted.' She said glumly, handing the letter to her mother.

'But you've passed everything! You have an Outstanding in all your subjects!' she said scanning the page and smiling proudly as she did so.

'Not in all of them.' Lily said sadly, 'Look at the bottom of the page.'

'Transfiguration; E,' read Lily's mother, 'That's only one grade from the top one though sweetheart! That's still excellent!'

'Pass that here than Heather!' Lily's Dad said putting down his paper and holding out an outstretched hand for Lily's exam results.

'Oh honestly, Richard! We just read them out!' Heather said to her husband, shaking her head as she handed over her youngest daughter's exam results.

'I still like to see them!' Richard said happily as he took the piece of parchment, beaming down at it as if it was the best thing he'd seen all year.

'What else did you get then sweetie?' Heather addressed her youngest daughter, trying again to read the letter Lily now had her hands on.

'Just my usual letter telling me when term starts and a list of new books to get.' Lily said quietly, concentrating on her letters.

'Let's see then.' Heather said caringly, prying the letters from Lily's small, dainty hands.

She read the first one out loud;

Dear Miss. Evans,

Please note that the new school year will begin on September the first. The Hogwarts Express will leave from King's Cross station, platform nine and three-quarters, at eleven o'clock.

A list of the school books you will require for next year is enclosed.

Yours sincerely,

Professor M. McGonagall

Deputy Headmistress

'Well that was interesting!' Richard said sarcastically as his wife finished reading the letter. At Heather's glare his eyes widened and he returned to reading his newspaper, attempting to hide his face.

Rose shook her head and read the next letter which was in her hand.

SIXTH-YEAR STUDENTS WILL REQUIRE:

The Standard Book of Spells, Grade 6 by Miranda Goshawk

An Advanced Guide to Transfiguration by Emeric Switch

Advanced Potion-Making by Libatius Borage

'Only three new books! That's good. We'll go get them on Friday. How does that sound dear?' Heather asked her husband who peered over the top of his paper meekly.

'What was that?' he said timidly causing Lily to laugh. She found it funny that her father was still scared senseless of his mother even after years of marriage.

'I said we'll go and get Lily's new books on Friday.'

'Yes, yes. That's wonderful!' Richard said putting down his newspaper and looking absolutely thrilled about the prospect of visiting Diagon Alley again.

'How many subjects do you take this year then?' Heather asked her daughter who had stopped stifling laughter.

'We can choose between five or six I think…' Lily replied before getting up and going to her room so she could laugh freely.

That Friday, the Evans' went to Diagon Alley returning with Lily's new book, two new sets of school robes and a fresh potion making kit. So Lily spent the rest of the holidays memorising her new school books as she had nothing else to do.

'Young Master James. Your breakfast is ready.' Linda the house elf said before apparating back downstairs to the kitchen to clean up.

James sat up in bed. His feet were where his head had started and his quilt was on the floor. James looked around his large room. It had posters of Quidditch teams on the walls as well as pictures of his family and friends. There were two very large wardrobes with matching chest of drawers next to them. There were also matching bedside tables. On the wall opposite his king-size four-poster bed was a large door which led to a grand en-suite bathroom. James looked up to the ceiling at the beautiful glass chandelier which hung in the centre of his room. Suddenly a huge snore came from James left. He looked over and a few yards away was another king-sized four-poster bed. He picked up his pillow and threw it over to the other side of the room to the other bed. From beneath the blankets of this bed, emerged a figure with thick dark hair which handsomely framed his face.

'What'd you do that for?' Sirius asked James groggily, rubbing the sleep out of his eyes and throwing the pillow back at James.

'Breakfast is ready!' James said swinging his legs of his bed and stretching.

'Oh boy!' Sirius yelled jumping quickly out of bed and running down the long hallway to the huge grand staircase. It resembled the staircase which featured in the Parisian opera house where his great-great-great grandmother and grandfather went on their honeymoon. They had had it copied because she fell in love with it. It took them to the grand foyer which would lead to several reception rooms, libraries, galleries and living rooms then, eventually, one of the dining rooms next to the kitchen.

James chuckled at his best friend's behaviour. He had gotten used to it this summer as Sirius had decided to run away from home revealing his curious plans for what he would be doing in the summer; staying with the Potter's. Sirius had shown up to the Potter Mansion on his seventeenth birthday after he had been disowned by his parents. The year before, on his sixteenth birthday, he had done the same thing and turned up at the Potters to stay with them for the summer. But this year, as he was now seventeen, he had officially left his family home and family.

His parents, unlike Sirius himself, were great believers in Voldemort's cause and when they had found out that Sirius was not going to join the Death Eaters and join any resistance going, it had been the last straw for them. Sirius said he had pulled the last straw years ago and had already planned on running away as soon as he hit his seventeenth birthday, (when his large inheritance from grandfather and his part in the black fortune would transfer to his account), much to their surprise. So Sirius went to the only place he had ever felt like he belonged. The only place he had ever felt loved for who he really was; The Potter's

James' Mum and Dad were all too happy to take him in, feed him, and clothe him. They loved Sirius, but mostly they loved the fact that their only child now had some company during the school holidays.

James reluctantly followed Sirius downstairs wishing he could return to the warmth of his own bed. He had been having a wonderful dream about Lily. She really was the girl of his dreams. He walked through the right half of the Potter Mansion until he entered the dining room to see a Hogwarts letter on his place-mat. He rubbed his eyes again and walked over to it. He picked it up and looked across the table to see that Sirius had already ripped his open and was reading intently.

'O.W.L results?' James asked Sirius who nodded. 'How'd you do?'

'Got O's in Defence, Herbology, Charms, Astronomy, Muggle Studies, E's in Transfiguration, Potions and Divination and an A in History of magic.'

'That's great!' James said ripping his letter open to look at his own grades.

Ordinary Wizarding Level Results

Pass Grades:

Outstanding (O)

Exceeds Expectations (E)

Acceptable (A)

Fail Grades:

Poor (P)

Dreadful (D)

Troll (T)

James Potter has achieved:

Astronomy: O

Charms: O

Defence Against the Dark Arts: O

Divination: E

Herbology: O

History of Magic: A

Muggle Studies: O

Potions: O

Transfiguration: O

'What'd you get?' Sirius asked James whilst tucking into the bacon roll that Linda had made him that morning.

'A in History of Magic, E in Divination and O's in the rest.' James said as he put his letter back into the envelope.

'That is very good Young Master James!' squeaked Linda as she put a plate of toast in front of James, 'I is very pleased for yous and I is sure Master and Mistress Potter is agreeing with Linda!' She bowed and scuttled of out of the room whilst James shouted his thanks to her retreating figure.

'Well done mate!' Sirius said through a mouthful of bread. 'Any minute now we should hear from Moony…and there it is!'

A large tawny owl flew through the window and dropped two letters in front of James before pecking a piece of toast and flying out again.

'Looks like Wormy sent us one too!' James said ripping open the letter from Peter first which was lying on top of Remus'.

'How come they always send you the letters?' Sirius groaned. This had been happening since Sirius moved in. He had written to his other two friends to tell them about his new living arrangements so now, anytime either of them wrote, they only sent one letter which more often than not, was addressed to James for the both of them.

'They like me better!' James said simply and unfolded Peters letter. 'Pete got two E's in Defence and Care of Magical Creatures, two P's in Muggle Studies and History of Magic and A's in everything else.'

'That's not bad.' Sirius said, 'Better than I'd have guessed, that's for sure.'

James laughed slightly and opened Remus' letter. He looked at it and smiled whilst shaking his head.

'How'd he do?' Sirius asked, feeling as if he was about to be put to shame.

'All O's apart from Astronomy and Transfiguration which he got E's in. Know-it-all!' James said fondly before grabbing a piece of spare parchment and a quill and replying with the marks both he and Sirius had achieved. He then took out his wand and duplicated the letter.

'Naughty, naughty! No magic outside of school unless it's an emergency!' Sirius said in a mocking scolding voice.

'Like you've never done it!' James said walking over to the window where the large tawny owl, after flying around for a bit, had seated itself ready for the replies. 'This was an emergency anyway!' James continued whilst tying the letters onto the leg of the fidgeting bird.

'First of all, I'm seventeen now and I'm allowed to do magic outside of school. So ha! Second of all, what would that emergency be exactly?' Sirius questioned, diving into yet another bacon roll which Linda had just placed on his plate.

'My hand was cramping! The ministry can't tell who's done what when there's a qualified wizard or house elf here anyway.' James shrugged, patting the bird before it flew away. 'Leave that on the side.' he said indicating the book list that Sirius was now examining. 'Dad'll go get them later. He doesn't want us going to Diagon Alley at the moment.'

Sirius shrugged and tossed the letter to the end of the table before wolfing down the rest of his bacon roll and swallowing. 'Wanna go play a little one-a-side Quidditch?' he asked standing up.

'Sure, why not!' James replied and the two of them walked out to the full size Quidditch pitch that James father had invested in for James 13th birthday.

The boys spent that summer doing what adolescent wizards do best; eating, playing Quidditch, messing around and relaxing.

Down Spinners End, Severus Snape was thinking of new ways to renew his just passing friendship with Lily. He had already tried 'randomly' bumping into her, throwing stones at her window and just plain stalking her, but none of these methods had worked. He had been thinking about different ways to grab her attention during many hours of sitting uncomfortably on the brick wall just outside her house, but nothing aspiring came to mind. Today, he didn't go sit on her wall because he now knew that on Saturdays, her parents would go do the weekly shop and her sister would go visit her boyfriend. This meant Lily was left alone to watch the house and ensure that everything was ok. It was just a precautionary measure really. There had been a recent spate of burglaries down her street but they had caught the thief weeks ago. Even so, the Evans didn't want anyone to attempt to break into their house and see all of Lily's school equipment. Severus understood why. Lily needed to protect the secret of Magic from muggles.

So Severus sat at home in his bare box of a room listening to his muggle father drunkenly beat-up his mother downstairs and any item of furniture he could punch. The day before, he had wrestled a lamp to the ground before smashing it to pieces and growled at Severus to clear it up. This is why Severus tried to spend so much time out of the house. He hated his father. That problem would soon be taken care of however.

At the very beginning of the summer, Severus had been sworn in as an aspiring Death Eater and Lord Voldemort had made a promise to rid Severus of his muggle relatives. That way, none of the other Death Eaters would find out his true blood status which he had been lying about all his life. Severus had no idea why Lord Voldemort was willing to accept him into his ranks considering his blood status, but never the less, he had. But, one of Severus' problems was still unresolved; Lily.

During the summer, he usually kept refuge at Lily's or in the park they would visit which was down her street. But this was no longer an option for him. He thought back to when he had been watching Lily. The last time he had seen her was when she had let in an owl which was grasping her O.W.L results. She hadn't had a lot of owls that summer as her friends had all had prior engagements. So the three seconds Lily took to open the window that day were the ones Severus had tried to seize. Those few seconds he tried to talk to her but to no avail.

Suddenly, Severus was struck with an idea. Lily had let owls into her house without looking at who was writing to her first. She just let them in with no question. He needed to write her a letter. One last apology and maybe, to grab her attention first, he would congratulate her on her O.W.L marks. Only, he didn't know them. He knew his. Severus decided to try and strike up the 'conversation' with the news of his O.W.L results. He was sure it would work.

He kicked open his still packed trunk, hurriedly grabbed a quill and a piece of crumpled up parchment and wrote;

Lily,

I got my O.W.L results the other day. I got two O's, one in Potions and one in Defence Against the Dark Arts, five E's in Ancient Runes, Astronomy, Charms, Herbology, Transfiguration and two A's in History of Magic, Arithmancy.

How did you do?

Once more, I'm really sorry Lily! I wish there was a way for you to forgive me! I don't want our friendship to end! It's been too long for it to end over a silly mistake.

Sev

Severus put his letter in a thick envelope and sealed it before writing Lily's name on the front. He then tied it to his mother's owl and pushed the poor bird out the window as if he was daring it not to bring back a reply.

Ten minutes later, the owl returned with Severus' unopened letter still attached to its left leg.

Before they knew it, the students were all getting ready to hop on the Hogwarts express. It was ten minutes to eleven and still, people were arriving on the platform ready to either, board the train, or see their loved ones off on a safe journey. The station was bustling loudly and it wasn't helped by the noise that the gleaming scarlet steam engine was making as it was emitting smoke. The students of Hogwarts were greeting their friends happily, exchanging hugs and holiday stories. Among these people, were the marauders.

'MOONY!' Sirius yelled jumping excitedly into a surprised Remus' arms. 'I've missed you!' he carried on almost squeezing the life out of him.

James clapped Remus on the back who immediately turned around for help. James chuckled before saying, 'Down Padfoot!' he then also hugged Remus who hugged him back in a brotherly fashion.

'How's it like living with the dog?' Remus asked nodding his head at Sirius.

'He loves it! His life is so much better now I'm with him twenty-four hours a day seven days a week!' Sirius said proudly.

'I'd trade him for you any day!' James muttered to Remus, 'At least you're housetrained!' Remus chuckled slightly.

'Should we go find a carriage then?' Sirius said to the other two.

'Have you said good-bye to James' mum and dad yet?' Remus asked.

'They didn't come. Linda brought us. Too busy with auror and healer stuff. It's getting pretty serious.' James said trying to be nonchalant, but Remus and Sirius could tell that he was upset that his parents hadn't come to see him off for the third year in a row.

'What about Wormy?' Remus asked quickly changing the subject and receiving an appreciative look from James.

'Ah he'll find us later!' Sirius said waving the comment away. 'Let's go find a compartment!' And with that he had picked up his trunk and had hopped onto the train. Remus jumped on after him, but before James could follow suit, he was rudely bumped into by someone going in the opposite direction.

'Watch it Potter!' Severus snapped evilly at James waiting for retaliation. James took a deep breath and reached for his wand.

Everyone around the two stepped back and waited with baited breath. Severus smirked at being able to provoke him. He drew his wand as James drew his ready for a small duel, but to his surprise, James only pointed at his trunk and levitated it onto the train and stepped on after it before shutting the door behind him.

Severus stood there stunned at what had just happened. He was sure James would fire the first shot. He had had it all worked out in his mind. He would be the subject of another one of James Potter's nasty tricks meaning that when Lily heard she would have sympathy for Severus and they would be friends again. It was a long shot, but it is what Severus had waited for. It was the plan he had made after Lily had sent his owl back that day. It was what he had counted on.

Severus spat on the floor and walked away to find Avery and Mulciber. He walked up and down the platform trying to find them with no look. He did however, find Lily. She was stood with both her parents and her sister. Saying goodbye, Severus assumed. He had made up his mind to go over and talk to her when he heard a voice calling his name.

'Oi! Snape!' he turned around to see who it was, who had stopped him from going over to Lily. Avery. He sighed and walked away from Lily over to the compartment that had his fellow Slytherin's in.

Lily had watched him walk away with a sigh of relief. She hadn't noticed him until someone shouted his name. She was worried that he might have come to talk to her if he hadn't been called away. Lily secretly thanked the person who did that.

She was saying goodbye to her parents, who were making sure she had everything she needed. A surly looking Petunia stood next to them.

'Your new books?'

'Yes!'

'Robes?'

'Yes!'

'Cauldron? Wand? Potion ingredients?'

'Yes. Yes. And Yes!'

'Good, good. Underwear?'

'Mum!'

'I'm sorry sweetie it's just I won't see you until Christmas! I just need to make sure you're ok!' Heather said with shining eyes.

'I'll be fine Mum!' Lily said, 'There's no safer place than Hogwarts! Believe me!'

Heather let a sob escape her lips before pulling her youngest daughter into a bone crushing hug.

'Honestly Heather! Stop suffocating the poor girl!' Richard said pulling Lily out of Heather's hug and into one of his own. 'Write to us every day!' he whispered to Lily.

'Now who's babying her?' Heather asked Richard with raised eyebrows.

'I never said babying, I said suffocating!'

'Alright fine!' Heather said smiling lovingly at her husband, 'Say good bye to your sister now Petunia!'

Petunia, who hated Lily, hadn't wanted to come. It was only her parents' offer of taking her shopping around London in the afternoon which had convinced her. She was stood pin straight with her arms folded and her sallow face in a disgusted grimace whilst looking at Lily like she was gum on her shoe.

'Can we go shopping now?' she asked her father in a voice which you would usually hear on a spoilt girl, before walking away to stand near the barrier which led out to the muggle world.

Lily sighed and looked after her sadly. Why couldn't they just get on?

'Give her a hug from me?' Lily asked her mum.

'Sure darling.' Heather smiled at her sadly.

The trains whistle blew for the minute departure warning and Lily quickly rushed her last goodbyes before stepping on the train. She walked down the middle of the train and found the compartment with her friends in just as the train started to move.

'LILY!' they all squealed as she pushed open the sliding door.

After several minutes of hugging, the girls all sat down to discuss their summers.

'Well Ireland is very dull. The best part my holiday was all the drunken men coming up to me and asking me for a kiss.' Alice said laughing.

'How was that the best part?' Emmeline asked curiously at Alice's strange remark.

'Because of how mum dealt with them. She turned one of the muggle light thingies…'

'Lamp posts?'

'Yeah, that's them!' she said to the girls who were laughing at her 'thingies' statement, 'Anyway, she transfigured one of those thingies into a lion and it chased them down the street!'

They all laughed at her mother's solution to keeping men away from her daughter.

'Well my holiday wasn't as funny as that, but it was fun to see the dragons!' Emmeline said happily.

'Did they breathe fire on you?' Hestia asked.

'Did you use your brother as a shield?' Lily asked.

Emmeline looked shocked and didn't answer. They sat in a small awkward silence before Alice decided to talk.

'How's your mum Hestia?' Alice asked, changing the subject so that the focus was now on Hestia.

'She's much better thanks! The healers at St Mungo's still have no idea what was wrong with her, but she's stopped showing symptoms and stuff now, so, fingers crossed she's all better now.'

'That's good then!' Emmeline said dreamily but happily.

'Yes it is. I'm kinda relieved. The healers were always around. It's like they were stalking us. Creepy!'

'Oh I know all about creepy stalkers!' Lily laughed darkly. She friends looked at her friends puzzled expressions and answered them with one word, 'Severus!'

They all groaned saying things like, 'Why won't he just give up already!', 'The slime!' and 'He's obsessed!' with Emmeline saying 'Ignorance is bliss.'

'I know!' Lily said looking at her watch, 'but on that note, I have to go to the prefect's compartment! See you in a bit!'

They said goodbye before returning to their conversation. Lily stepped through the sliding door and walked half the length of the train to reach the prefects compartment. She entered to find half of the prefects there already; the Ravenclaw's and the Hufflepuff's. There was no sign of the Slytherin prefects or of Remus who was the other sixth year Gryffindor prefect. There were always two prefects from each year in each house; a boy and a girl.

She sat down near the window and waited. It wasn't long before Remus entered and sat next to her. 'Hey!' he said to her. She looked at him and rolled her eyes before turning away and looking out of the window again. Remus widened his eyes and the Ravenclaw girl giggled slightly, blushing when he smiled at her.

The head boy and girl then walked into the room and began the meeting. They handed out the first two nights of the patrol timetable checking it over with them to ensure their work didn't suffer and they head enough nights off to catch up on homework and social activities.

After the head students had reviewed the rules to being a prefect and gave them the annual warning about things that could lose them their prefect badges such as not turning up to patrols, too many detentions and too many pranks. (They looked pointedly at Remus who was known for pulling pranks with his friends).

When they finally dismissed them after an hour of being stuck in a tight enclosed space, Lily immediately jumped up and left the compartment when she remembered he quill with which she had been taking notes. She doubled back to find Remus shaking his head at the blushing Ravenclaw girl who left the room with a dismayed look on her face.

Lily walked in tutting under her breath in a disapproving way. She found her quill and turned to exit the room to find Remus standing in her way.

'Why were you tutting at me?' he asked her with his arms folded.

Lily sighed and decided to just tell him the truth as she couldn't be bothered to make up a story. 'Because you're a marauder and I don't have time for you, your childish games and your childish friends! You play on your looks with the girls and then disappoint them! That's what you did to Hestia! You really hurt her.'

'That wasn't me! That was Sirius! I have never led a girl on!' he said, thinking that he had never even gone out with a girl because that would be just as bad as leading her on. Who would want to go out with a werewolf?

'Whatever! You're all the same!' she said storming past him, 'Please just don't irritate me this year! You and your friends! Just keep them away! Especially Potter!' Just before she had left the compartment for the second time however she heard Remus say something which made her turn back.

'I'll never understand you, you know.'

'What do you mean?' she asked, curious to see where this was going.

'You've never given Jam...err…us a chance!' he said quickly changing his words.

'Huh?' she said confused.

'That's just how you perceive us because you haven't spent any time trying to get to know us! You've never tried! We aren't as bad as that you know! We are nice guys! You've just taken your first impression of us and have held onto it for five years! Ever thought you just caught us at a bad moment?'

'Now just a min-'

'I mean, I bet your first impression of your friends wasn't that great, was it? But I bet after you got to know them, you began to see their good qualities. If you can find good qualities in them and even in someone who is all about the dark arts like Severus. If you could give them a chance, why can't you do the same for us? We aren't into that stuff, in fact we wouldn't touch it with a barge pole! But you were able to be friends with him. You were able to overlook his obsession and get to know the person underneath. You're just too quick to judge us!' Remus said before walking out the compartment leaving a stunned Lily behind to mull over his words.

This wasn't normal behaviour for Remus, but the full moon was in three days and his emotions were all over the place. He was starting to regret his little rant to Lily but he felt as if it was also good that he had said what he had. Maybe, finally, she would give James a chance and he would be free of a James who was always moping about the fact that Lily didn't like him.

He was beginning to relax a little and not feel guilty for his harsh words when he passed a compartment that had some first year boys in it. But this isn't what stopped him. What had stopped him was that his friend Peter was also sat in that same compartment. Remus slid the door open and popped his head round the door.

'Pete?'

At the sight of one of his friends, Peter broke into a smile and rushed out to meet Remus whilst babbling about not being able to find James and Sirius and how he had forgotten which side of the train they usually sat. Remus clapped him on the back and walked with him back to the compartment James and Sirius were playing exploding snap in.

Soon the train pulled into Hogsmeade station and the students, who had changed into their school robes, got off the train and into carriages, pulled by invisible beasts, which would take them down to Hogwarts. The four marauders hopped into a carriage to themselves and set off towards Hogwarts. Remus hadn't told his friends about what he had said to Lily in the prefect's compartment because he didn't want to know their responses. Plus, their conversation about their welcome back prank was a lot more exciting to him. When they were on the train, they had figured out what they were going to do and had been talking about it ever since. They finally stopped talking about their plan when they were seated in the great hall, ready for the sorting ceremony.

Professor McGonagall had lead the new first years into the great hall and had placed the Sorting hat on a three legged stool at the front. Everyone looked at it expectantly. They didn't have long to wait before a rip near the rim of the hat opened, and the hat began to sing;

To you I may be patched and frayed,

But don't judge on what you see.

I probably have more brains than you

Inside the whole of me.

Our story starts long ago,

When I was newly made,

The founders had a problem

So I came to their aid.

I helped them choose the students

Which they desired to teach.

All believed in different traits

To which they told to me

Gryffindor believed in love

Friendship and Bravery,

Hufflepuff in kindness,

Trust and loyalty.

Ravenclaw cared not for brawn

But for brains instead

And Slytherin, the cunning,

And those who used their heads.

So my purpose here today

Is to judge what's in your brain.

To tell you what your house will be

And where you should remain.

So if you show these traits,

Then I will clearly see.

Put me on your head and find out

Where you ought to be!

The hall burst into a rapturous applause that echoed of the high bewitched ceiling. It only quietened down when McGonagall pulled out a scroll with the list of the new first years on it.

'When I call your name, you will put on the hat and sit on the stool to be sorted.' She said in a stern voice, peering over her square spectacles.

She called the first name on her list and a small girl walked forward tentatively. She was only a few inches away from the hat when she leapt back in surprise. The stool with the sorting hat on it had slid away from her by about a foot. The students in the great hall tried to stifle their amusement. The girl shook her head and tried again. This time her hand had almost touched the hat when the stool sped past her to the opposite side to where she was standing. There was no hiding it this time; the whole hall burst into laughter. She looked around in confusion and the laughter began to subside. She spotted the stool again and almost ran towards it trying to catch it off guard. She had no success and the stool just kept avoiding her the more she tried. This entertained the hall greatly.

Whilst this was going on however, McGonagall was searching for the source of the havoc. She spotted the marauders laughing especially hard but thought nothing of it until she saw their wands in their hands, all trying to take control of the stool causing it to move back and forth. She walked over to them.

'Boys?' She said in a disapproving voice. They all looked up to her and put their wands behind their backs innocently.

'Sorry.' they said in unison.

After a small chuckle from McGonagall, she called for silence and the sorting ceremony continued.

After all the new first years had been sorted into their houses, Dumbledore stood up and the hall quickly fell silent.

'Before we start our fabulous feast, I would just like to welcome our new students and welcome back our old ones. Now I will let you eat before boring you with the essentials and notices. Enjoy!' He sat back down and suddenly mounds of food appeared on the plates and there were gasps of surprise from the first years.

'FOOD!' Sirius yelled causing people around him to laugh.

Lily Evans was about to shake her head at Sirius' behaviour when she remembered her conversation with Remus. He was right. She had never given them all a chance. She had only seen the bad in them. She soon forgot this however when she caught sight of some chicken legs and there was an unexpected growl from her stomach. Her dinner passed in a blur because she was so hungry, the feelings Remus' words had brought up in her, gone. She was hardly aware of what she was eating and soon the feast had finished.

Dumbledore stood up and the hall fell quiet again. 'Just a few announcements before you head to your dormitories!' he said, his arms wide open in a friendly gesture. 'First years should note that the forest on the grounds is forbidden to all pupils. Also, no magic is to be used in the corridors, a rule which our beloved caretaker would like to instigate this year. I would also like to advise all students to not accept any letters with a dark mark seal for your own safety. That's all. Now off to bed. Pip, pip!'

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Galindaba

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