DISCLAIMER:Rowling, Rowling, Rowling...
NOTES:In Prisoner of Azkaban, Rowling says that the Potters knew Voldemort was after them because Dumbledore told them. Well you're just going to have to conveniently forget that part if you want to read this fic. Thanks to my beta, Docky, and to all the numerous writers of Harry Potter fan fiction on the net. You guys always inspire me.
Lily Potter slammed another book closed in frustration. She stared out at the sea of volumes that lay before her and sighed. This was getting her nowhere. Maybe there was something that she missed. Maybe she was looking in the wrong place. It didn't make sense. She began with Divination and found nothing that could help her there. Then she had moved on to charms, curses, potions, and anything that she could get her hands on. But still, Lily was empty handed. She groaned and put her head in her hands. Part of her wanted to cry, another part wanted to throw all the books against the wall and still another part wanted to give up all together.
Sounds of raucous laughter drifted to her ears from the other room. She quietly slipped across the floor. Perhaps James would be able to give her a better perspective on the matter. James Potter, Lily's husband, was in their living room talking to his best friend, Sirius Black. Of course Sirius wasn't in the room nor was he on the telephone. Sirius' head was sticking out of the dancing fire. The sight was still odd to Lily. She hadn't been raised a witch. In fact, until a few years ago she didn't know real witches existed.
They were discussing the latest Quidditch match in great detail. Lily didn't know much about the game herself, only the bare bones. She had gone to every game back when she was at Hogwarts, but had never paid much attention to the action. Her eyes were always glued to a certain Gryffindor chaser flying high in the sky. Lily smirked as James re-enacted part of the game that Sirius had missed. He could still make her heart flutter.
Lily could stare at him for hours. It was a bizarre, girlish obsession that she had tried so hard to get rid of back at Hogwarts. Damn him for being so cute, with his unruly hair and outrageous sense of humor. Lately, however, looking at him had been painful. Lily always had to fight back the tears when she thought about it. A horrible vision had come to her a few weeks ago. James was cold. His lifeless body lay covered in a pile of rubble that had once been their house while ominous, green light still hung in the air. His arm reached out for their son, dear Harry, who James failed to protect. He was so small, so young. Lily couldn't stand the sight of her boy crumpled on the ground.
Warm hands pulled Lily close to a steadily beating heart. Sirius was gone. James tightened his grip on his wife trying to soothe the tears she hadn't noticed streaming down her face. He trailed delicate kisses from her ear to her neck, all the while muttering soft words in hopes of calming her down. Lily couldn't help but smile. These were the moments she cherished. She wished she could just stop time from racing forward. Then they would be happy; then they could stop what was to come.
A tiny cry from upstairs shocked the two out of the moment. They were both completely silent and listened. There it was again.
"Harry's awake," James whispered. He pressed his lips softly to her forehead. "It'll be all right," he promised and bounded up the stairs to their infant son.
Lily fell back against the wall for support. But it won't be ok, James, she thought. After hearing about her vision, he and Sirius had taken all kinds of precautions to hide them from Voldemort. They were supposed to be safe her in Godric's Hollow. But the foreboding lump in Lily's stomach told her otherwise. He was still coming. She wanted to scream out at the top of her lungs, to rage against the inevitable. What was the point of having premonitions if she couldn't stop the future she saw? What were they for then? Just to taunt her? To make her spend her last few days with her husband and baby locked up in their library looking for a spell that didn't exist? No magic could block avada kedavra.
The waiting was the worst part. She wanted Voldemort just to come and get it over with. Lily Potter slumped to the floor in defeat. Then something happened. Something made a broad smile cross Lily's face even though she was in the depths of despair. Upstairs, young Harry Potter giggled.
Lily slowly traveled up the winding staircase, clutching the banister with white knuckles. Her knees threatened to give out beneath her yet she continued. She wanted to see her baby. If she could just see him smile then everything would be okay...
"James Potter!" Lily barked angrily when she entered Harry's room.
James was perched atop his old Shooting Star broomstick, winging around the nursery. He was explaining all the rules of Quidditch and the proper way to fly to the infant he held in his arms. James came to an abrupt halt when he saw his wife in the doorway with her hands on her hips, her eyes flashing menacingly.
He chuckled nervously, knowing that he was in trouble. "Harry made me do it," he explained wryly then flashed her a winning smile. She had seen it so many times before at Hogwarts when he had been trying to escape punishment.
Lily narrowed her eyes. She refused to be easy on him, no matter how cute he was. "What if you had dropped him?"
James scoffed. He was offended by the mere idea that he would drop their son. He had never dropped the Snitch and that was much smaller than Harry. Wisely, James decided now wasn't the time to pick a fight with Lily. He slowly brought the broomstick down so he was eye level with his wife. She inspected the boy closely. Harry grabbed tiny fistfuls of James' robes and cooed. Satisfied that her cherished baby was all right, Lily gave her husband a quick kiss on the tip of his nose to let him know he was forgiven.
James grinned. "He's a natural." Lily giggled. Leave it to James to be concerned if the boy was a good Quidditch player when he couldn't even sit up on his own yet.
Harry yawned loudly, closing the Quidditch conversation. "It's somebody's bedtime," Lily observed. James began to rock back and forth in sweeping half circles on his still mounted broom. Harry's tiny eyes fluttered shut and soon his heavy breathing told his parents he was fast asleep. The Potters were perhaps the only family, magical or non-magical, who used a broom as a rocking chair.
James silently passed Harry to his mother as he got off the broom. Lily clutched the precious bundle to her. James placed a soft kiss on the top of Harry's head. He pressed his cheek to Lily's. "I'm going to get ready for bed," he whispered in her ear, hoping not to wake the baby.
Lily sat in the old chair that had been in her nursery when she was little. It was probably the only piece of Muggle furniture in the house. She lovingly stroked her sleeping baby's head; he was going to have hair like his father. He barely had any hair it was already out of place.
Harry was so small. He looked so innocent, sleeping comfortably in Lily's arms. Her heart swelled with both joy and sadness at the same time. She loved Harry more than life itself. So much, it hurt. The idea of him dying was the most painful thought in the whole world. This was why she spent her days scouring the library. This was why she couldn't give up. She was determined to shield Harry from Voldemort.
"I'll find it, Harry. I'll find a way to protect you."