Eugh, sorry about the wait, I've had numerous computer issues.
Here you go! Hope you enjoy! I'm working on some new stuff. I love you all and thanks for bearing with me for however long it's been now. You guys are brilliant!
"Well, here goes." Lily Evans took a deep breath and levitated her trunk off the Hogwarts Express for the last time. It had been a hard and emotional year for all the Hogwarts Students, but especially for the seventh year Gryfindors after the loss of their dear friend, Marlene McKinnon.
"Knut for your thoughts," Sirius commented as Lily glanced back at the train.
"I still expect her to burst into a room and brighten it up or jump out at me while I'm alone on my patrols."
"I can still feel her brighten up a room," Sirius smiled softly, thinking about one time where he could have sworn he felt the brush of her fingers on his cheek. "Besides Lily-flower, if she were to jump out at you while you were on patrols, the only thing she'd see would be you and Prongs eating each other's faces off. I reckon she'd be the scared one after that unpleasant experience."
"That was one time!" Lily exclaimed; Sirius gave her an odd look. "Okay, you caught me, it was once a week."
"I guess it's okay, since you are engaged and you're going to be living together. Speaking of lover-boy, where is he?"
"We're not engaged and I have no clue. I haven't seen him since we got on the train. Actually, now that you mention it, I'm kind of worried," Lily glanced around the platform for her boyfriend.
"What do you mean you haven't seen him since you got on the train?" Sirius asked, becoming concerned. "We thought he was with you."
"I was patrolling for most of the train ride because he was worried about you, so I assumed that's where he was. Where's Remus? Maybe he's seen him."
"Oy! Moony!" Sirius shouted, getting the attention of his friend and waving him over frantically to show that it was important and he should excuse himself from Emmeline's family immediately. "Moony, have you seen Prongs?"
"I thought he was with Lily," Remus looked around the platform. "You mean he's missing?"
"I haven't seen him since we got on the train!" Lily gripped Sirius' arm tightly, "Remus, he was supposed to be with you while I did his patrols!"
"Lily-rose, calm down, I'm sure he's around here somewhere," Sirius patted the distressed redhead's arm and peered around the platform for any sign of James.
"Guess who!" A pair of familiar hands covered Lily's eyes.
"James!" Lily exclaimed, throwing her arms around his neck and kissing him quickly. Before he even had a chance to respond, she had slapped him in the chest. "Don't ever do that again!"
"Do what?" James asked, trying to figure out for the millionth time how she could change emotions so quickly.
"Don't you ever tell me you're going to be with the others when you aren't!" Lily hit him again. "I couldn't find you and neither Sirius nor Remus had seen you since we got on the train either. I was afraid something had happened."
James wrapped his arms around Lily and narrowed his eyes at Sirius and Remus mouthing sarcastically, "Thanks for covering." He rubbed his girlfriend's back, "Lily, love, I left something at Hogwarts and had to go back for it is all, then I apparated here after a nice conversation with Dumbledore. I should have made sure you knew where I was, I'm sorry."
Lily pulled back and blinked her glistening eyes, "Where are we staying tonight?"
"My parents are taking us all out for a celebratory dinner at Romano's," James replied with a guilty grin. "But our flat should be all ready for us tonight."
Lily spotted Mrs. Potter and dashed off to greet her, trying to drag James along with her.
"I'll be there in a second," James laughed, before turning to his two friends. "Wow, you two are never being put in charge of covering for me ever again."
"It was the first thing that popped into my head!" Sirius protested, "You're lucky I didn't say you were devoured by hungry Plutopians."
"I had to go along with his story," Remus shrugged. "Would you rather I had told the truth?"
"No," James sighed, "I want it to be a surprise, but I wish you hadn't scared her. She's going to be upset for the rest of the day."
"I wish I hadn't scared her either," Sirius muttered rubbing his arm. "My poor right forearm will never be the same again!"
"I'll see you tonight," Remus laughed. "Don't forget it, especially now that you've gone through all this trouble."
"How could I forget?" James swallowed nervously. "I haven't been able to think of anything else for weeks."
Remus waved and walked back over to Emmeline and her family. Em wrapped her arms around Remus' middle and his arm rested casually across her slender shoulders.
Sirius watched them sadly, "I'm going to my flat. I'll see you tonight?"
"Are you sure? Lily and I could use some help getting situated if you'd rather." James looked at his friend carefully.
"Nah, I'll see you later. You two will want some time together and I need some time by myself to think." Sirius levitated his trunk and walked away with a nod at Dorcas and her family on his way out.
"Hey Mum," James kissed his mother on the cheek and pretended like he hadn't seen her in months instead of mere minutes. "Where's Dad?"
"He's in the car. We thought we'd take you to your new flat. Lily's parents said they'd meet us at Romano's for dinner tonight." Mrs. Potter smiled up at her son happily.
"They said they've been wanting to go back for years," Lily smiled as James slipped his arm around her waist and waved his wand to levitate her trunk for her. "They're spending the whole week there."
"Oh good, then we won't have to figure out how to get them there," James winked at his mother and started off of the platform and back into King's Cross. "You'd better lead the way Mum, since I don't know where Dad is waiting with the car."
"Mrs. Potter? Where's your wedding ring?" Lily asked, noticing that the Potter engagement ring did not accompany the simple gold wedding band.
"Silly me, I was doing a spell for wart banishing and I poked somebody's wart a tad too enthusiastically--it's disgusting--but whatever was inside got all over my ring. It really needed to be cleaned anyway, so I thought I'd have it professionally done." Mrs. Potter waved at a car parked right in front of the exit. "James, if you'd just pop Lily's trunk in the back, we'll catch up on the way over to your new flat. I was there to get things arranged properly this morning, and it is just perfect for you two."
Lily slid into the backseat and James slid in beside her a second later. "Hey Dad."
"Hey James, been behaving yourself this year?" Mr. Potter grinned at his son in the rearview mirror.
"For the most part," James grinned. "There was this incident with Filch's cat, shaving cream balloons, and enchanted razors."
"Ah, that's my boy!"
"It was Lily's first detention," James laughed.
"I thought of the whole thing." Lily said proudly.
"James! You've corrupted the poor girl!" Mrs. Potter exclaimed. "Ooh! See, you're so close to the Muggle shopping district, Diagon Alley, and the Ministry. Your flat is prime real estate!"
"That's good news," Lily observed, thinking for a second. "I don't want to live in the middle of London for the rest of my life, just for now."
"In other words, until I start getting grandchildren!" Mrs. Potter laughed, pointing out the window at a building up ahead on the right. "There it is."
"Thanks for coming to get us," James hopped out of the car as his Dad pulled into a parallel parking space and stopped the car. "We'll see you tonight."
"Don't you want me to come give you the full tour?" Mrs. Potter called out the window as James hefted Lily's trunk out of the car. Lily slid out of the backseat looking confused as to James' hurry.
"We'll manage! See you tonight!" James waved at his parents, grabbed the trunk and hefted it through the door. Lily shrugged and waved as well before following James into the lobby of their new apartment building. It was only for members of the wizarding world, so the lobby was eons more attractive than the outside of the building. It would still look horribly run down to any muggle.
"What's the big hurry?" Lily asked as James pushed the button on the elevator, causing it to whisk upwards. "You seem a little on edge."
"Just a little on edge," James smiled. "I want everything to go smoothly. Plus, I hate when she starts talking about grandkids."
"Then I guess telling her that we've had sex would be a big no?" Lily teased. "She might get excited and think I'm pregnant."
"You aren't, are you?" James asked as the elevator stopped on their floor.
"Love, I couldn't be, remember? Plus, I would have told you," Lily surveyed him carefully. "Really, what's wrong? Are you feeling guilty because you scared me earlier?"
"Well, I wasn't," James levitated the trunk through the door, then scooped Lily up and carried her across the threshold. "Now I think I'm going to start."
"Don't worry about it," Lily pecked him on the lips. "Now, I want to see this flat that your Mum is so excited about."
"I think she's just excited because it only has the one bedroom." James muttered, gesturing up the stairs behind the couch.
Lily grabbed his hand and pulled him into the kitchen, "Just think, we have our own place! Nobody will walk in on us ever again!"
"I wouldn't count on it," James eyed the door suspiciously. "I have a feeling our friends will just burst in whenever they feel like it. It does give a false feeling of privacy though."
Lily tugged on his hand again, "Let's go try out our new bed."
James' eyes widened, "Why didn't we start living together sooner?"
Lily didn't respond, choosing instead to just kiss him, wrap her legs around his torso, and let him carry her upstairs.
After a lazy afternoon and quick showers, Lily and James got dressed to meet everyone at Romano's. James kept stuffing his hands in his pockets while he stood waiting for Lily to finish her hair, causing her to give him an odd look in the mirror.
"James, really, what is bothering you? You've been on edge all day," Lily adjusted the barrette pinning back soft red curls carefully and put on her earrings. "I really wish you would tell me."
"I think I'm just nervous," James shifted his weight. "I've never lived with a girl before."
"We basically have been living together for the past seven years, even if I hated you for at least half that time. If us living together is going to upset you, I can move in with Alice until she gets married or something."
"No, no, just give me a couple days," James grinned winningly at her in the mirror. "You ready?"
"Yes, I need you to fasten the clasp again though," Lily came over and handed James a silver heart-shaped locket, one that she had given Marlene for Christmas the year before her death. Sirius felt that Marlene would want Lily to have it back, so the redhead rarely took it off. Inside was a tiny moving picture of the girls on one side and the boys on the other.
"Marlene would like the fact that you always wear this necklace," James let the tips of his fingers gently brush her bare neck.
Lily let her hair fall and turned around, "I wear it all the time so that I never forget and she's always with me."
James softly kissed his girlfriend on the forehead. "Ready to go?"
Lily nodded and wrapped her arms tightly around James' middle so the couple could apparate to Romano's. When they got there, Lily spotted her parents and brought James with her over to greet them. For some reason she couldn't guess, they were both wearing identical grins from ear to ear and kept nodding at James.
When Sirius arrived, James excused himself and hurried over to his best friend. "Padfoot, I'm not sure I can do this. I mean, it's a huge step."
"Prongs, let me put it this way. Are you sure she's the one you want to be with forever?"
"Yes, I'm sure. I just…"
Sirius placed his hand on his best friend's shoulder, "Prongs, if you're sure that Lily is the right girl for you, then do this. You never know what's going to happen tomorrow. Just look in her eyes and say what you feel."
James nodded, trying to calm himself down. He didn't think Lily would refuse, but there was always that possibility. Soon, however, he relaxed and chatted amiably with all their friends and family. It wasn't long before everyone was there and Nicolas Romano was showing them to their seats. A small, black velvet box weighed down James' pocket.
As dinner proceeded, James grew steadily more and more distracted. It wasn't until after a dessert of chocolate tall cake, that Lily mentioned anything.
"James, are you sure you're feeling alright? You've been so quiet and strange all day," Lily peered at her boyfriend anxiously.
James grinned, "No, I'm fine. Actually, there is something I want to say."
A collective silence fell over the table, and everyone turned their smiles and attentions to James. Lily looked at them all curiously as she too set down her fork and turned her whole attentions to James.
James took a deep breath, "Lily, we've just come off a rough year, but we pulled through it together. I learned a lot this past year, but two things seem to be the most important. First of all, I learned that you are the most important thing to me. And since I missed my final Quidditch match because you were sick in the Hospital Wing, I don't think that rivalry for my heart is up for debate anymore. Second of all, and perhaps more important, I learned to take nothing for granted, especially not time with someone you love. Both these things brought us here, to Romano's, not just to celebrate the end of school, but, if you accept, for me to give you this." James pulled the box out of his pocket and slowly got down on one knee, "Lily Evans, will you marry me?"
Lily threw her arms tightly around James' neck almost, but not quite, knocking him down. He wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her into a standing position before giving her a firm kiss on the lips. Lily was startled when not just her friends and family, but the majority of the restaurant broke into applause. But she beamed and blushed when James slipped the family ring onto her finger and kissed her again.
"Harry, why are you telling me this story?" Ginny asked. "I mean, all I wanted to know was how you found this restaurant. I didn't really need the entire account of your father's proposal."
"Yeah, get to the point already, mate!" Ron called, Hermione quickly stomped on his foot and told him sharply to shut up.
"The thing is, Gin, that I found that ring in my Gringotts account."
Harry held up his hand, "No, really Ginny, only a minute more, I swear. Hopefully you'll be glad you heard me out."
"Let the boy speak," Mr. Weasley clapped Harry on the back. "Go on Harry, best to just say it. I know you're nervous."
Harry swallowed, then got down on one knee, "Ginny Weasley, will you marry me?"
Ginny had just taken a large sip of water and spat it out all over his face, "What did you say?"
"What did he say?!" Ron hopped up out of his seat.
"Sit down, and don't be a prat," Hermione yanked Ron back into his seat. "This is why we didn't tell you."
Harry shot Ron a dirty look and Hermione a thankful one, "Ginny?"
"Merlin, Harry, did you ask me to marry you? Because either I've gone completely crazy hoping you'd propose and thought you actually did, or you've actually gone and done it."
Harry started to close the box and stand up, but Ginny threw her arms around him and kissed him, "Yes, Harry Potter, I'll marry you."
And with that, Harry James Potter slipped the same ring that his father, and his grandfather, and his great grandfather had all placed on the hands of their fiancées, along with a silent plea to Merlin for Ginny to relax her grip around his neck slightly as he was having trouble breathing.
Eh, I can't believe I finally finished my baby. I'm quite proud, I was beginning to think it would turn into the neverending story or something!
Thanks for all the love and support. I'm convinced you guys have helped me grow into a better author and a better person!