Disclaimer: J.K Rowling owns the characters; I own the plot.
I was actually coming up with ideas for "This is Not a Journal" when I started writing this as something that happens to James. And then I thought, "This would make a pretty neat one-shot!" So here it is! It's not part of my other story any more though. I thought of something different for that scene.
Things will look grim for a while, but bear with me, for all is not what it seems!
James was walking down the street near his home in Godric's Hollow, idly kicking the pebbles that littered the pathway. The sun was setting, creating a romantic sort of mood. Looking up, he noticed his wife, Lily, hurrying towards him. He waved to intercept her, but she walked right past him until she came to the edge of the woods in a fairly secluded spot.
James was slightly peeved that she had ignored him like that, so he approached her and asked her why she was there. He had left her in front of the fireplace with a mug of a tea and a book. She shouldn't be out here in her condition.
When she didn't answer, he waved his hand in front of her face. When she didn't so much as blink, James came to the logical conclusion that he was invisible to her.
Not knowing what else to do, James waited beside her. By the looks of things, she was waiting, too. After a few minutes, a figure could be seen coming towards them from the direction that James had been heading. James could tell that it was a man, but the man had the hood of his cloak pulled up over his head, so James was unable to see his face.
When the man reached Lily, he pulled her into a tight embrace. Jealousy exploded in the pit of James's stomach and he saw a red haze in front of his eyes.
The man's hands were gently stroking Lily's auburn hair and in return her hands reached up to push back the hood of his cloak.
"No," the man whispered gently, pushing her hands away.
"But it's just the two of us," Lily insisted. "Who else would be out here at the edge of the woods at this time of night?"
"I know, but if Potter were to see me with you..."
Lily bowed her head in shame." You're right," she admitted. "But...I wanted to see you."
"You can see me at work, tomorrow," The man chuckled softly.
"I know, but it's not the same."
James, forgetting that the two people standing before him wrapped in each other's arms could not see him, started towards them, in hopes of driving them apart.
Instead of making contact with solid forms, James passed through them like a ghost. Was he a ghost? Had he died and this man was now with Lily? Had she really moved on, even though she had promised to love him forever?
James looked down. His body did not resemble the pearly white of a ghost. So that ruled his being dead out. What was he then that Lily and this man could not see nor hear him?
It was obvious that he had not died, so why was his Lily with another man?
"My Lily..." James's voice echoed among the trees with a dead, hollow sound.
His Lily, in the arms of another...He never would have thought it possible if he hadn't been seeing it with his own two eyes.
Wasn't it only a mere half an hour ago that he told her that he loved her? And hadn't she replied that she loved him too? Yet here she was, on a sunset tryst with someone else.
And just who was this someone else? The man had said that Lily would see him at work. So he knew the one who had taken his love from him! He worked with the villain! Maybe even talked to him on a regular basis...
Thoughts, horrible thoughts flooded James's mind as he watched the unknown man lean forward towards Lily, and James felt a stinging sensation in the corners of his eyes.
Their lips met and a single tear escaped James's eye, but he did not bother to wipe it away. James watched as the man kissed Lily, and he could remember the pressure of her soft lips on his, as though she were kissing him, and not some one else.
Unable to watch anymore, James turned away. Disbelief, grief, loneliness, sadness and hatred engulfed him as he struggled to hold back the barrage of tears that threatened to escape his eyes.
Gripped by a sudden feeling of desperate hope, that maybe this wasn't Lily, it was just someone who looked very similar to her, or that maybe he was seeing things, James dared one more glance.
What he saw made his stomach drop.
"Divorce Potter. Tell him that you can't be with someone that you don't love." The man whispered urgently.
"But...," Lily began.
"You love me don't you?" The man carefully tucked a lock of Lily's hair behind her ear, as James had done so many times before.
"Yes," Lily breathed as she reached up and touched the man's face beneath his hood. "I do."
James realized that he was holding his breath. He exhaled slowly and found that his breaths were coming in ragged, shaky gasps.
"Then divorce him."
"I..." Lily stuttered
"Do you love him?"
'Please say yes, Lily!' James cried, reaching to grab Lily by the shoulders and shake her until she came to her senses, but his arms only passed through her. 'You do love me. Tell him that! Leave him! Come back to me! I need you, Lily! I love you!'
The impact of the words hit James in the chest like a physical blow. In that instant, he could literally hear his heart breaking into two pieces.
James turned away and sank to his knees. Dead leaves crunched under his knees as he knelt. His hands clutched his eyes, trying to hold the tears in.
Lily was no longer his. She didn't love him anymore, she loved this other man and she was going back to their house to tell him that she wanted out of their marriage; to tell him that she loved this man underneath the hood.
Tears streamed down James's face, blinding him, and dampening his hands.
James opened his eyes.
He was in his own bed. And there was Lily beside him.
James's heart burst with relief and happiness to see her lying beside him on their bed. He reached over and brushed a few stray strands of hair off of her face.
James had never felt so glad to see Lily as he did at that moment at 12:04 a.m. on a Friday morning.
"Hmm?" Lily stirred and opened an eye. "What time is it?"
"I love you Lily," James leaned over and caught Lily's lips with his own.
"I love you too, James," Lily said as she pulled away. "But what time is it?"
James checked his watch. "12:05," he sheepishly admitted. Lily needed her sleep, what with her expecting and all, and here he was waking her up in the dead of night.
"That's nice," Lily yawned and then closed her eyes.
"Lily?" James hesitantly asked.
"Yesss?" Came the sleepy reply.
"Can I...can I hold you?"
"Can you what?" Lily opened her eyes to stare incredulously at her husband.
"Can I hold you? You know...put my arms around you?" James smiled slightly, hoping that she would say yes. After that terrible dream he just wanted to feel Lily safe in his arms.
"You didn't have to ask," Lily yawned loudly as she laid her head on James's shoulder.
James put his arms around her and drew her close to him, breathing in her sweet scent.
"I love you," James murmured into Lily's hair, not sure that she could even hear him. She might have fallen back asleep already.
There was a moment of silence, then came Lily's soft reply.
"I love you too, James, know that, okay? I'll always love you, and don't you ever doubt it."
James grinned at the irony of her words.
"I won't Lily, I won't."
I hope you enjoyed this and please review!