Nothing ever really changes

Lily couldn't believe she was actually standing here in Diagon Alley waiting for the troops. Tonight was to be a welcome home celebration for all the young men that had gone off to fight the Giants in Albania, who were under the orders of Voldemort. The troops had been gone almost a year, most of them were the graduates of Hogwarts and so almost all of their old classmates were at the party.

Although she knew she should be excited that everyone she knew had survived but Lily couldn't shake the feeling of dread deep in her stomach at the prospect of seeing him again. Him being James Potter. Lily had gone out with James for almost a year before he had gone off to fight. They had broken up when James signed up to go to Albania, Lily didn't agree with his decision and neither of them felt they could sustain a long distance relationship and so they had parted ways. Neither of them had been the same since.

In the middle of the alley was a large velvet purple curtain and a grand stage where the troops would make their entrance. Lily stood at the bar that had been set up behind the stage, so that she could see the back of the troops but they couldn't see her. She knew it wouldn't be easy for her the first time she caught a glimpse of the man that broke her heart and she didn't want him to see her. He always had a way of knowing exactly what she feeling just by looking at her. And Lily didn't want him to know how much she still loved him, because he would obviously be over her, so she would say hello be polite and wish him luck in his life.

Just then cheers erupted from the crowd, the troops had arrived…….

JAMES POV

I'm standing here in a tiny cramped room, full of half drunk men listening to Sirius go on about how we were heroes and that girls loved that sort of thing and how we would be fighting them off. I know why you would be thinking, I'm 18 I should be excited about the prospect of a good party and an endless supply of girls and a guarantee of scoring.

But I just can't I haven't been able get a certain red head out of my mind ever since I left. Lily Evans, the one girl that's occupied my mind since I was 14 in fact I think she's taking up permanent residence there.

I should never have agreed to a break up, I should have fought harder, we could have at least tried to make a long distance relationship work. After spending the better part of two years trying to get the lovely Ms Evans to date me, I just gave up and let her go, she's probably got some fantastic boyfriend maybe even engaged and all because I was too stupid to put up a fight. I never stopped loving her though, I wrote her a letter everyday I didn't send a single one though.

Great now some witch is shouting at us to go through some door and into Diagon Alley, I hope she's there and if I'm hoping for things then I hope Lily is single and in a forgiving mood.

GENERAL POV

Lily stood waiting for a glimpse of that familiar unruly jet black hair, not even realising she was holding her breath. Then he stepped out, she didn't take her eyes off him as he waved to the crowd and then went down the stage steps to join to party. She lost sight of him in the crowd and hoped that the worst of it was over, her heart was beating so fast she could actually see it on her chest, her palms were sweaty, all coherent thoughts were absent from her mind, her les felt like jelly. He was as gorgeous as ever and yet more so, he seemed more mature and so sexy.

James was frantically searching for Lily in crowd even though he didn't know for sure if she would actually there, he somehow knew she was close by, he couldn't explain it but he knew. Then he suddenly turned and through the masses of people he caught her eye and his heart stopped.

Lily silently gasped, whether it was from seeing his face when he turned round or the fact he looked her straight in the eye despite the fact that there was around 75 people between them. She actually had to grip onto the bar or her legs would have given way, he still made her feel the way he always did. Then Lily came to her senses (or so she thought), and turned her head and started to talk to her friend Emma, who was next to her.

James knew she had seen him, and turned her head. But there was no boyfriend next to her and seeing her just solidified what James already knew he felt, he loved her and he had to talk to her one last time, so then at least if she knocked him back he would know that he had at least tried one last time.

"Oh look who's coming over," said Emma in a sing song voice.

"Who? Your broom closet buddy Sirius," said Lily teasing Emma, to distract herself from the butterflies in her stomach.

"No, yours," said Emma then she pretended to notice someone and ducked away before Lily could stop her.

"Lily, Lily," said James trying to get her attention, he was almost next to her.

"Oh hi," said Lily, she couldn't pretend not to hear him any longer without being rude.

"Hi," said James panting slightly since he had practically ran over to her.

"How are you?" said Lily her heart beating faster than was healthy, just because he was standing next to her.

"I'm good and you?"

"Yeah I'm good"

"Good, I was hoping you'd be here"

"Wouldn't have missed it, did you know the ministry is actually paying for each person to have a free drink each?"

"Seriously I always thought Fudge was a tight fisted git," laughed James

"He is, that's why I couldn't miss it had to see if it was true"

"And here was me thinking it was cause you missed us all," teased James.

"I did," said Lily quietly and looked up to find James searching her eyes.

"Dance with me?" said James.

"What?"

"Come on, I want to dance with you?" said James offering Lily his hand.

"Okay," said Lily taking his hand and allowing him to lead her to the dancefloor.

When they got on the dancefloor, James pulled Lily by the waist into his body. Although it was a slow song Lily allowed James to wrap his arms round her waist and she leaned into his strong chest. Lily lifted her arms up and wrapped them around his neck and they moved to their own song.

"I missed you," James whispered softly into her ear, feeling braver now that they were surrounded by people.

"I missed you too," said Lily.

"No, I really missed you, not just because you're one of my best friends but because…." Said James his confidence failing him at the last minute.

They danced for a few more minutes and then James seemed to regain his confidence as Lily cuddled into him more and more, almost as if she was clinging on to him in case he left again.

"I thought about you all the time, every single day. You were the reason I kept fighting so hard, I knew I had to stay alive to come back and tell you…"

"Tell me what," said Lily lifting her head from his chest.

"That I love you, that I never stopped loving you not for a single second," said James looking down at Lily.

Lily's head dropped down so she was looking at ground.

"Lily, sweetheart look at me, come on look at me," said James gently then he curled his index finger under chin and lifted her head so she had to look at him, "Lily my beautiful flower cup"

"You don't call me that anymore," said Lily quietly.

"I know, I wish I did. I'm sorry"

"For what?"

"For leaving, for leaving you and giving up on us and…"

"You don't have anything to apologise for. You had to go I get that now, you did nothing wrong"

"It doesn't feel that way, if I had stayed we wouldn't have…"

"You don't know that"

"I do, if I'd known then what I know now I wouldn't have gone I wouldn't have left you"

"And what is it you know now?"

"That we weren't some school romance that I would just get over. I haven't I've spent the past year missing you, wishing I could see you and tell you I love you, I love you more than anything more than I ever knew I could"

"James"

"Look at me, look me in the eye and tell me you don't feel the same, because I know you can't"

Lily looked up at him, "then why ask me to if you know I can't"

"If you can't then…."

"Too much has happened since then…"

"What? What's happened, what is it that is so important…."

"I've changed, you've changed my whole world has changed"

"I'll adjust, tell me everything I swear we can get past everything"

"How do you know that? Both of us have lost our parents in the past year we're…"

"We can help each other, come on Lily I know you love me"

"I do love you"

"Then what's the problem?"

"I don't want to lose you again, I can't go through it all again James, I rather be just friends than…"

"You won't I promise nothing will make me leave you again I saw what I almost lost and I don't ever want to be without you again"

"Promise?"

"I promise"

Lily finally let go of all the doubts she had had and reached up and kissed James. And they were together until they died on that fateful Halloween night.