A/N: Since I have a lot of time on my hands now that school is officially over, I decided to start a new story. Hopefully, if I get enough feedback and encouragement, I'll continue. Don't worry, I will still update my others as well. This is a plot bunny that's been in my head. I know that something similar has happened before, but I'll try and make it different. Stick with me and please review!
Behind The Mask
Chapter 1-The First Day Back
The last summer winds blew through James Potter's dark unkempt black hair as he sat on the steps of his home. He fiddled with a snitch in his pocket and nervously tapped his foot. He and his mum were supposed to be leaving for the train station, but she was frantically searching throughout the house for the keys to a magical vehicle lent to the Potter family from the Ministry.
"Mum," James called from the porch as he released the Snitch into the neighborhood for good. "Why do you need keys? You're a witch."
A red faced Mrs. Potter appeared behind the door and rolled her eyes out of ignorance.
"Thanks, James," she said graciously. Her long black hair was the opposite of his own, silky and smooth. Her warm hazel eyes were dancing in laughter, but also in sadness as she was watching her only son leave her once more. This time was also the last time. "What would I do without you?"
"Knit," he figured. "You would do a lot of knitting. You always tried that when I was younger, but I refused to give you a moments peace."
"That you did," she said. She watched as her seventeen year old son, now of legal age, levitated his things into the trunk of the car. He had passed his apparation test, but had agreed with his mum that they would drive to King's Cross for old time's sake.
James was quiet for the entire ride, his thoughts wondering upon things he didn't wish to share with his mum. Right before he had left last year, an awful, dangerous thing had happened. Sirius Black, James' best friend, had told Severus Snape, a slimy seventh year who James and Sirius despised, that Remus Lupin resided in the Shrieking Shack once a month. What Sirius failed to mention was that Remus was a werewolf and transformed every full moon in that shack. James had heard wind of this and had to save Snape, much to his displeasure, for Remus' sake.
Remus had been mad at Sirius for the longest time after that, two weeks, and had finally managed to mend their friendship before leaving. James hoped that the Marauders would still be as close as ever this year.
It was rare seeing James without Sirius as the two of them were practically like brothers. The summer before sixth year, Sirius had moved out of his parents' home and into the Potter's house. Yet, this summer, Sirius had inherited money from his late Uncle Alphard and had bought himself a flat in London. James had visited there often, but it was odd boarding the train without his best friend.
As he saw the magical barrier between Platforms 9 and 10, James turned and smiled down at his mother. Between the end of sixth year and the start of seventh, James had experienced a growth spurt and not towered above his mum.
"Oh, James," his mother cried, wiping a tear from her eye. "I'm going to miss you."
"I'll miss you too, Mum," he insisted, leaning down to hug her. "Tell Dad that I'll miss him as well."
"Oh, I will," she said, fixing his shirt and trying to straighten his hair. "You behave now. I don't want anymore owls from Professor Dumbledore saying that you and Sirius have blown up the trophy room."
"That was in second year, Mum," James reminded her. "Keep up with the times."
"Goodbye!" she waved, before watching her son run his trolley through Platform 9 ¾. She then walked back to her car, unaware of a set of eyes watching her.
Lily Evans had just arrived at the station, held up by her sister Petunia, and had seen James Potter actually acting like a human being with his mother. She looked at Mrs. Potter, a kind woman, and wondered how James had come out of such a lovely lady. She looked over at her own mother, with her thick auburn hair and dazzling blue eyes. Mrs. Evans was a caring woman, a woman who supported Lily and all that she did.
"I'm going to miss you," Lily said, hugging her mum. "I don't know what I do without you."
"Well, you better write to me," her mother insisted. "I'll be busy with Petunia's wedding, so it'll be refreshing to hear from you."
Mr. Evans kissed the top of his daughter's head.
"Make us proud, Lily," he said to her. Lily looked down at her Head Girl badge thoughtfully. Although she knew she had always done well in school, she hadn't really imagined becoming Head Girl. It was an honor for her.
"I will," she said quietly. "I have to go now. I love you."
She walked through the barrier and smiled up at the steam engine. She looked around for her best friend, Sydney Davis. Lily and Sydney had pretty much been thrown together from day one. They were both in the same year, Gryffindor house, and shared a dorm with a bunch of superficial girls whom were sometimes described as demonic. They had to stick together in order to survive.
"Lily!" a voice called from the left. Lily turned to see a pretty girl with short black hair and bright blue eyes. Sydney was not the prettiest girl in the school, but something about her made her stand out from the rest. Lily tended to think it was her spunk, but the boys of the school believed it was her smile.
"How was your summer?" Sydney asked excitedly. "Meet any boys?"
"I live with my parents and my sister," Lily reminded her. "In Surrey. There are no boys to speak of that are halfway decent."
"I met one," Sydney said. "My parents shipped me off to a camp with other magical folk and I met this boy named Ben who goes to Durmstrang."
She waggled her eyebrows at Lily and Lily laughed.
"We better find a seat," Lily said, boarding the train and heading down the aisle. "Everywhere looks pretty full. Petunia was complaining to my mum about the color of the wedding dress. She held her up for at least ten minutes talking about the pros and cons of the color pink."
"Sounds fascinating," Sydney insisted. "Here, let's sit in this one."
Alice George, a shy seventh year girl who also occupied their dorm, was sitting alone and watching people out the window. Sydney and Lily had never really gotten to know Alice, as all of Alice's friends were in Hufflepuff, but they had always thought she seemed normal compared to the others in their dorm.
"Hi Alice," Sydney said boisterously. She sat down across from the small, blonde girl and smiled.
"Hi Sydney," Alice replied in a somewhat grateful tone. "Lily. You don't know how relieved I am that someone sat with me."
"What do you mean?" Lily asked, sitting down next to Alice.
"Well, you know my friends in Hufflepuff?" The other two girls nodded. "They think that Frank Longbottom likes me, which he clearly does not, so they sort of resent me now."
"That's crazy," Sydney quietly said. "It's Frank's decision who he likes, not theirs, and if they were true friends it wouldn't matter."
"I don't know where they would get that idea anyways," Alice mumbled. "I barely know Frank."
"But he's handsome," Sydney commented. Her blue eyes innocently surveyed the blush rising in Alice's cheeks. Something caught her eye before she could comment on it. "Lily, you made Head Girl?"
"Oh yeah," Lily remembered, standing up abruptly and opening the door. "Sorry to run, but I need to go to the front of the train for a bit."
"Good luck," Sydney and Alice called from the compartment.
Lily's heart raced as she moved towards the door. The carriage door was right in front of her, but Lily couldn't move to open the door. Something in the back of her mind told her that once she opened that door, there was no turning back. Call it intuition, but Lily had good sense about things. Most things, that is.
Quickly, she opened the compartment door and her green eyes opened wide in surprise. Someone was already in the compartment waiting for her. A tall, slightly more filled out James Potter stood by the window and turned quietly as she opened the door. He didn't say anything to her, didn't even smirk, just shyly smiled and picked up a piece of parchment from the seat.
"Potter," Lily managed to say in disbelief. She couldn't get over the way he was looking at her, right into her eyes. It was nerve wracking. It was as if he was examining her to the utmost extent. He was seeing her. She didn't know how much she liked that. "You're Head Boy?"
He nodded and handed her the piece of parchment.
"McGonagall left that," he said in a deep voice. "It's a list of passwords. I already gave them to the Prefects. That's just for your own knowledge."
He headed towards the door and before he shut the door, he mumbled, "Congratulations on becoming Head Girl, Lily."
She had never held a more civil conversation with James in her life and she had only said four words to him.
"Prongs!" Sirius yelled as James entered the compartment. He nearly lunged for James as he hugged his friend. "Where've you been? Party started twenty minutes ago."
He was referring to the sweets, the other Marauders, and the blonde Hufflepuff all within the compartment.
"Moony, Wormtail," James acknowledged before sitting down. "Padfoot, I was in the Heads compartment. I made Head Boy."
Silence filled the compartment. Sirius' mouth hung wide open. The blonde stopped chewing her gum. Peter stopped scratching his head. Remus stopped tapping his foot.
After a couple minutes of stunned silence, they all told James congratulations, except Sirius who believed becoming a figure of authority was a mortal sin.
"You're on the dark side now, Prongs," Sirius whispered.
"Well, Lily's on the dark side with me too," James announced. Remus nodded, although a question popped into his mind.
"You're still going after her then?" Remus asked cautiously.
"Slowly," James assured his friend. "I've decided that all previous attempts were rubbish. Lily seems like the kind of person who needs to be led into things. I figure I've been doing things wrong for years."
"What do you mean? You've gotten loads of girls before," Sirius reminded his friend.
"Not Lily," James said quietly. "Lately, she's the only one I've wanted too."
"Wow, Prongs," Peter commented. James looked up at his friend. "You've grown up."
"I think I have," James said.
Once Lily had attended the feast, supervised the first years' tour of the dorms, and been introduced to the Heads bathroom and lounge, Lily made her way up the stairs with less energy than she had relied on.
"A dance," Lily grumbled. "We're going to have a dance at this blasted school."
"I know," Sydney said anxiously. "I can't wait. It's going to be absolutely marvelous."
Alice smiled. The three girls had gotten to know each other a lot better on the train ride and during the feast. Alice had admitted how uncomfortable she had always felt in the dorm, what with all the other loony girls frolicking around.
"This dance is going to be the biggest headache since O.W.L's," Lily insisted. "First, I'm going to have help organize it, the girls in our dorm are going to go spastic this entire month, there is going to be much more trouble at that dance than necessary, and girls and boys' self-esteem is going to be feeling a lot of pressure. A dance is the last thing we need."
"You're no fun," Sydney teased, sticking her tongue out. Her black hair was held up into a messy bun with an eagle feather quill. Somehow, she made it work. "So Alice, who do you want to go with?"
"Hmm," Alice contemplated. "Maybe Remus Lupin. He's nice and fairly attractive."
"You like the good boys?" Sydney asked, making a face. "Me? I'm more into bad boys. Something about rebellion just draws me to them. Evan Rosier seems like a good possibility."
"You're joking," Lily exclaimed. "Rosier? The same Rosier that stages loud conversations about his latest Muggle hunting trips?"
"What can I say? I might not support his cause, but he does have a very sexy head of hair," Sydney gushed, holding a pillow on her bed. "Recklessness is a definite turn on."
"What about you, Lily? Anyone in particular you're thinking of going with?" Alice asked.
"That is, if I go," Lily reminded the two.
"You're going," Sydney automatically responded.
"How can you be so sure?" Lily inquired.
"There is no way in hell that James Potter would let you miss this dance for a second," Sydney retorted, looking her friend daringly in the eye.
For once, Lily was left speechless on the subject of her supposed enemy, James Potter.
A/N: Hope you liked it so far. Please review.