Disclaimer: For the last time, I don't own anything!
A/N: A proper author's note will be at the end.
Epilogue ~ The End
Lily Potter sighed happily. She had done it, she managed to tell Harry the entire story of her life until that point. Oddly, it was something of a comfort. Now Harry knew it all. Whether he would remember any of it was another question, but if he forgot she could always tell him again.
He was fast asleep in her arms. She loved him so much, Harry had become her life. She loved James as much as ever, but this was her child. She put so much of herself into him that he became her priority. He was what mattered to her. She needed him in order to be strong.
There had been many times in the past week when all she had wanted to do was break down and cry. But she didn't. She remained strong.
James came to the doorway and smiled at her. Lily realized again what a handsome man her husband was and how much she loved him. She hoped Harry would grow up to be just like him, with her eyes of course. He was a perfect mix of the two of them. And they loved him so much.
"I love you, Petals," James said seriously, his eyes solemn behind his glasses. "I need you to know that."
Lily was not surprised by this. The feeling of ever–encroaching death was something that plagued her as well. It was a terrible feeling that left a person with the desire to tell everyone he loved how much he cared.
"I love you, too, James," she replied softly. "Always. Nothing can change that."
She continued to rock Harry in her arms when they heard a loud noise from the livingroom. James frowned and went to investigate.
Lily suddenly realized that her heart was beating faster and had climbed it's way into her throat. James. She needed him.
Suddenly there was a loud crash at the front door. Noises of someone stumbling around filled her ears. And the most terrible words she would ever hear wafted into the room.
"Lily, take Harry and go! It's him! Go! Run! I'll hold him off—"
More crashes, and a high–pitched cackling laugh. Lily's insides froze. She was rooted to the spot in fear—for a moment. Then it left and she was overtaken by a need to protect her young.
She started to run. Where could she go? She couldn't Apparate, her wand was in another room and it was too dangerous for Harry. She had to run.
Her mind was screaming at her. A torrent of thoughts rushed through her mind, not the least to get to James. She ran down the stairs and ran past the room where her husband was fighting for both their lives. Jets of multicolored light bounced around the room, holes were blasted into the walls.
He saw her. She heard screams and realized belatedly that they were her own. Her head threatened to burst with the thoughts in her head. She saw Voldemort turn to James. Oh God, James. James looked at her, shooting curses from the tip of his wand. His lips moved, but she couldn't hear him over the sound of her screams. He was telling her he loved her.
No, he couldn't leave her. No! She stumbled half forward, only to see the fateful blast. A stream of green light, brighter than she had ever seen before, hurtled itself toward James, hitting him directly in the chest.
NO! Every region of her body screamed his name, but her mouth just made one loud shriek. James fell to the floor, his body still. Voldemort turned to her. She backed up. The fireplace, she had to get to the Floo Powder.
Harry, she had to save Harry. James, oh God, James! She needed him! She was going to die. Oh, the screaming. The laughter, she couldn't stop the laughter.
Fear. Torment. Misery. All were running through her head. She thought she might go mad.
He was coming closer. She continued to back up, but tripped and fell. Harry was bawling, she covered him with her body. Voldemort had to kill her to get to him. She continued to crawl backwards.
She needed James, oh James! She begged. She had to beg. James. Harry, she had to save Harry. James. James would want her to save his child. She had to protect Harry. She would die for him if need be. She suddenly realized that before the night was over, she probably would.
"Not Harry, not Harry, please not Harry!" she pleaded. It hurt to hear her beg, but she had to, she couldn't lose Harry, too. James couldn't be dead. No, oh God, no.
"Stand aside, you silly girl...stand aside, now!"
His voice was like a thousand knives in her chest. The pain, oh agony. The voice who killed her husband. He wanted Harry. No! No! She had to protect him.
"Not Harry, please, no, take me, kill me instead!"
Voldemort only laughed and moved closer, brandishing his wand threateningly. He came closer, oh God, oh God!
She was screaming again. They ripped from her throat; she couldn't stop.
"Not Harry!" A little stronger. "Please...have mercy...have mercy—"
Voldemort's laughs were louder and crueller. Lily forced her limbs to move. She was so scared, but he couldn't have Harry. She needed Harry, she couldn't live without him, not with James gone, too. James, oh, she loved him, she needed him. James. He couldn't be gone.
"Not Harry!" Stronger yet, but Voldemort loomed over her. She looked up at him in terror, gazing at his horrible red eyes. "Not Harry! Please—I'll do anything!"
"Stand aside. Stand aside, girl!"
Lily dragged herself from him. Harry was crying at a piercing level. Harry. Oh God, oh God, she had to do something!
"You should have given him up," Voldemort growled. "You would not have had to die. I don't want you. Foolish, foolish girl! Goodbye!"
NO! NO! Oh, Harry, James. She was so scared. She shook. Harry! James! Her heart leapt from her chest, her breathing was shallow. No, no, he couldn't! She cried...Harry...James...someone, anyone! The laughter, God, the laughter! Harry, I love you! I love you, always! I love you!
And that was the last thing she remembered, as a bright jet of green light buried itself in her body. Voldemort's laugh rung in her ears and would be the last thing she ever heard.
* * *
The Potter house in Godric's Hollow was in ruins. And buried beneath the rubble were the lifeless bodies of Lily and James Potter.
Sirius Black stood in front of the rubble, tears cascading down his cheeks. Lily and James, dead. It couldn't be true. It was some sort of nightmare and he would wake up at any minute.
Only it wasn't a dream and he was awake. Lily and James. No, not them. Not his best friends. Lily, James, and little Harry had been his family, his entire life. Now, Harry was ripped from him as well, taken to Dumbledore by Hagrid. They had flown away on his motorbike, something he had once loved, but which had now lost all meaning. Lily and James, dead.
He knew he couldn't stay much longer, hidden though he was. People were starting to come. He had to leave. But he couldn't.
The pain was nearly unbearable. He knew exactly where the blame rested; on his own shoulders. It was all his fault. He needed them, he needed their company. He couldn't face the agony of loss. He was alone, so alone.
A sudden burning hatred coursed through his blood. Sirius was alive with the anger, knowing his friends had been betrayed and knowing who was responsible. He had to pay. And since Sirius was the only one who knew who did it, he would have to seek retribution on his own. How could this have happened?
They had trusted him. Now Voldemort's servant had shown his true colors. Sirius was blinded by pain and loathing. Everything he had known had been taken from him. He wanted revenge.
God, it hurt. It hurt so badly. His heart actually bled, his face ached from the crying. His mind was numb from the knowledge. James had been like a brother and Lily had been his sister. They were family. Oh, how it hurt. Someone had set his soul afire. It hurt so badly. Dead, they weren't coming back.
Out of the corner of his eye he saw someone rooting through the debris. The anger in him surged. How dare someone violate the sanctity of James and Lily's resting place. How dare someone intrude on his grief, his mourning. He strode over there, intending to speak harshly, but what he saw caused him to stop and recoil.
It wasn't a person, it was a monster. A demon. It was a mixture of grey, orange, and green, and it had scales covering it's whole body. The eyes were bright purple and menacing. It's mouth was ruby red and the sight of it nearly made Sirius lose the contents of his stomach.
The creature bent down and shifted some roof tiles aside. He bent over a body, Lily's body, Sirius realized to his horror. The creature drew a cloud from her mind and stuffed it into a satchel at it's side. It looked up and met Sirius' gaze. They stared at one another, one's eyes filled with hatred, one's filled with nothing. The demon showed neither compassion, nor pain, nor delight, nothing. It simply stared. At last it spoke and said four simple words.
"I have been paid."
Then it turned and left. Sirius couldn't move. He had to leave, he knew that. But when his legs moved again he moved instead towards Lily's body. She was sprawled out, half of her covered by the destruction. Her emerald green eyes were wide, a look of terror upon her face. Her beautiful red hair lay in clouds around her face. She looked like she had been carved out of marble.
Two tears escaped and dripped down Sirius' face. He bowed his head over her still body. So much pain.
"You promised," he said harshly. "You said that no matter what happened, we would always have each other. You promised."
Then he stood up and started to walk away, a terrible look in his eyes. Someone was going to pay for this betrayal. He would have retribution.
He had a rat to catch.
My Faithful (and not so faithful) Readers,
Well. That's it. That's where the saga of Lily and James ends. I know this story ended on a down note, but I warned you about that a long time ago. Also, in case anyone noticed, all the dialogue in this chapter, except for the last thing Voldemort says, is from the things Harry hears when the Dementors get too close in PoA. So I didn't write it. I nearly cried as I wrote this, and I hope I moved some people as they read it. That was my goal, at least. I did my best to have both fun and sadness in this story.
In my opinion, Lily and James were not a normal witch and wizard. They experienced hardships, had great friends, and fell in love. But everything has it's price and they paid theirs. They were good people, but they were not perfect, not by a long shot.
I've worked on this story for about a year, and I've enjoyed every minute of it. I'm sorry to see it end. Twenty–six chapters is quite an accomplishment for me. I'll probably never do it again. But if you enjoyed it, that's all I can ask for. I wrote mostly for me, but I was pushed along by you, and for that I'm grateful or else I might never have finished.
I'm going to start working on a R/Hr/H love triangle story entitled Promise You Won't Forget Me. Please be on the lookout for that. If you liked this one, there's no reason you wouldn't like that one, unless you're a D/Hr fan. And if that's the case, I can't help you. Sorry.
So please keep reading my work. I truly appreciate your reviews and feedback and I promise that I have no plans to stop writing. It's my life.
Thanks for reading Memories of Years Gone By, we've had a good run.