Disclaimer: I own nothing from the Harry Potter universe.
Ten Feet from Death
What was going on? What had happened?
Lily couldn't understand why she was lying in the hospital wing. Why did she look so pale? Was she asleep? Unconcious? Dead? It must be something close to that- her mother was crying and even a few tears were starting to form in her fathers eyes. They sat huddled around her bed.
She felt so strange, so- so... carefree... even while seeing her own body laying on a clean, crisp white bed in the hospital wing, looking white and completely drained of life. Her hair was limp and tangled. Her body looked bruised and battered. What had happened to her?
Lily felt as though she was looking in someone's pensieve. As though all of this was just a distant memory of someone's. Everything had that dreamy, hazy look to it, such as you see in dreams. Was she dreaming? No... she couldn't possibly be dreaming.
The last thing Lily remembered was feeling a split second of pain shoot through her entire body before everything became dark. Then... Then this scene, in the hospital wing, came about. It was blurry at first, but became clearer.
She tried to remember more... What had happened? She remembered being in class... astronomy? Yes. That was where she had been. In astronomy class. She had been filling out her star chart. It was just about complete when-... what had happened next?
Lily was startled from her reverie as she noticed Madame Pomfrey come into the picture.
The traces of "coma" slipped into Lily's range of hearing. So she had slipped into coma. She wasn't dead after all. She wasn't in heaven, looking down upon her parents.
While she vaguely thought she should wake up, Lily carelessly gave little thought about actually trying to wake up. It startled her some. What was this feeling that was over her? Why didn't she want to wake up?
Her vision was blurrying. It grew dark.
"Lily... please wake up."
Who was that? Who was speaking? Her vision was coming back again. The hospital wing was starting to come to life in her eyes again. She still lay exactly as before, pale as ever. Her parents were no where to be seen though. Instead, just one single person was near Lily.
It was James. He sat stiffly on the edge of her bed, holding her hand, watching her. How sweet of him... James was always so sweet to her. Her fiance, James. She had almost forgotten about him. She was starting to forget things lately, being in coma.
"Lily... Lily..." He continued to murmur.
Lily almost wished she would wake up then. To make James feel a bit better. He looked worried.
James... who was he again? Lily mentally shook herself. He was her fiance, her love. Don't be so forgetful, Lily. Hold on. Stop being so careless about this. You're in coma. You need to wake up. Stop drifting away from the matter at hand...
She was walking to the ledge of the astronomy tower and looking towards the stars, scratching at her star chart. She could almost feel the warm breeze blowing slightly.
She remembered... looking down? Yes. She was looking down... Why had she looked down again?
"Wake up, Lily. Hold on. I know you can pull through..."
An image of setting down her quill on the ledge passed through her head. An uncommonly heavy breeze passed a few seconds later...
"You can't leave me, Lily. I need you. Who's going to scold me for being a prick if you leave? Who am I going to argue with about completely stupid and useless things?"
...The quill fluttered out into the open and off of the ledge. Lily was reaching out for it...
Lily almost felt James' hand holding her own tightly. She could almost feel the warmth of his hand.
"And who am I going to marry in a few months? You said you'd marry me, Lily. You said you would. Don't tell me you... fell only so you didn't have to marry me."
She could faintly hear him give a shaky laugh. She had always liked his laugh... and his eyes. What color were they again? Oh, damn. She had seen them only this morning... it seemed like an eternity now... What color were his eyes? She couldn't forget! She refused!
In the midsted of trying to remember James' eye color, a vision of her leaning outwards hastily and grabbing at the quill as it floated in midair. She had slipped slightly...
"Do you remember the time when you tripped me down a flight of stairs in fourth year? And I had a bunch of broken bones? It hurt like hell... I think that's when I first started loving you, Lily. Don't ask me why. I don't know why. I sort of... fell for you, in an ironic way. Corny to say, but, yeah."
His eyes were hazel. She could remember them now...
...She had slipped slightly and lost her balance. Lily saw her body wobble slightly before going over the ledge...
Lily struggled to remember. It was getting hazier now. Her memory was mixed up. Everything needed to be sorted out. Certain memories needed to be pulled away from other memories and replaced with different memories...
The memory of getting her wand was floating through her head as the memory of her mother saying that it was time to get ready for the first day of school. The memory of Christmas. Of learning her first spell. Of meeting James. Of attending her sister's wedding. Of taking her O.W.L's. Of James proposing. The memories were blurring together faster. She could hardly recognize one from the other.
All the while, the vision of her falling flashed through her head.
James sighed. "Lily... I know you can hear me... You need to wake up. I won't go and say you need to wake up for the sake of me, because you would call me a self-centered prat most likely, but you do need to wake up for the sake of your parents, your friends... All of us."
The memories had slowed slightly. Lily's mind wondered to random things that happened to cross her mind as the feeling of falling came upon her. The sky was blue, why was it blue? Was the cup half-full, or half-empty? Her hair was red... wasn't it? What was the meaning of life? What do mangos taste like?- She had never had a mango before. How big was the universe? James' middle name was Harold, wasn't it? Blue was a nice color, wasn't it.
"Truth be told, I'll be a wreck if you never wake up. Hell, I'm already a wreck..."
The feeling of falling was becoming greater now. She could see the dark, starry sky above her as she fell. Lily had realized vaguely, and in an strange, unconcerned way, that she had fallen off the astronomy tower; that was why she was in coma. She only thought, Oh. I fell off the astronomy tower. How horrid.
She could feel the wind rushing past her now. And screaming... was that her screaming? Or was that the scream of the people still at the astronomy tower watching her fall? She hoped James hadn't been there to see her fall, she would have hated that. Did James take astronomy this year? She couldn't remember.
"... Hey, you remember when you accidently dyed your hair green first year? Wouldn't come out for weeks. Me and Sirius couldn't stop laughing... and you couldn't stop crying. I thought you to be so stupid and girlish to be crying about something so little as hair.
"I guess you didn't appreciate my laughing, did you? I got the message after you put itching powder in my soap bottle... Merlin, I think that was worse then when you set my hair on fire."
Oh how she loved it when James laughed. Lily wished she could be laughing with James right now. The feeling of falling was becoming quite irritating to her. She didn't like knowing there was nothing underneath her except the whizzing of hissing wind, the air rushing past her, the screams...
"You and me, Lily, we've been through a lot together. Hate for it to all end here... Just stop being so difficult and wake up... Not persuaded enough yet? Ah, well. You always were hard to persuade. Took you seven years to persuade you to date me.
"You remember our first date? God, that was a disaster, wasn't it? Heh. That really was... Landed you in the hospital wing, didn't I? A broken nose. I swear I didn't know you were behind the door, Lily, I wouldn't have opened it if I knew you were behind it... although, it was a nice excuse to hug you while you cried about your nose."
Their first date... it didn't come to mind at the present time for Lily. She wished she could remember, really she did.
Would she ever meet the ground? When was the falling going to stop? Lily was getting impatient now. She never did have good patience. Her mother had always said patience was a virtue... hadn't she? Lily couldn't remember very well. Maybe it had been her father. Or... Uncle Fred? Did she even have an Uncle Fred?
"You would laugh straight in my face till you were completely blue if you were awake right now and I told you this, Lily... I swear I can remember every hug, every kiss, every everything between us. Every conversation. Every everything between us since the age of eleven. You're probably making fun of me right now, in your head. I bet you are, aren't you?
"Yes, I suppose you are... I remember our first hug- fourth year, I dared you to and you, of course, wouldn't turn down a dare. Our first kiss- in that new ice cream parlor at Diagon Alley during the summer after sixth year. The first time you smiled at me, the first time you laughed at something I said. And, yes, I do remember us snogging, Lily. You know I do. You'd probably punch me in the face for thinking about that stuff at a time like this..."
Lily was still falling. Forever falling. She thought the end was nearing, but couldn't be sure. She wondered what would happen after the falling ended. Would she wake up? Would everything be dark? Would everything be light? Would she be dead? Even as she fell faster, the thought of being dead only caused Lily to mentally shrug. It was so weird, why didn't she fear it? Why was she so unconcerned about dieing? Why didn't she feel frightened?
"...I remember... I remember when we first made love, Lily... it was unexpected, but I didn't regret it... I've never regretted you. Have you ever regretted me?... I remember wondering why in the world you would want a bloke like me. I still don't really get why you want a bloke like me- You'd probably tell me to shut up and stop rambling on and on now, wouldn't you?...- Even though sometimes you never shut up either, Lily. Don't even try and deny that in your head."
They had made love? Lily felt bad for not remembering this. It was probably nice. Then again, she didn't remember much right now... on the otherhand, she was remembering too much, if that was possible. Everything, all of her past, all of her feelings, all of her experiences, all of her firsts, were flashing before her eyes. Yet, they flashed by too quickly. She didn't get a chance to see them all. Perhaps that's why she couldn't remember them- she couldn't see them and needed to slow them down.
Lily could now make out the end now. It wasn't anything brilliant or out of this world. It was just solid ground- and a large pile of hay that Lily vaguely remembered Hagrid leaving out for some creature or another (she couldn't remember which one) that wander around the Hogwarts grounds.
Through all the chaotic- yet extremely lazy and slow- events going on for Lily as she caught sight of the end, she could also slightly feel the warmth of James' hand once again. It was so warm. Comforting. It brought about a feeling that warmed Lily's entire body. It was like an invisible blanket someone had wrapped around her as she fell, blocking out all of the rushing air around her.
"... And I remember when I said I loved you. You thought I was just joking around, remember, Lily? Quite funny watching your face when you realized I wasn't joking..."
James seemed to pause, as if waiting for Lily to miraculously wake up, laugh, and tell him this was all just a big misunderstanding, a joke.
"... I guess you're going to be difficult for a while longer then, eh? I think you've always secretly enjoyed being difficult. Well... I'll be here waiting for you, Lily. Whenever you decide to wake up, I'll be here waiting..."
The warm feeling James' hand was giving Lily was growing stronger. She felt quite tingly now. Almost giddy. It was the same feeling James always gave her when he looked her way... kissed her... smiled at her... smirked at her... talked to her... hugged her... It was the same feeling James was always giving her, all the time.
The end was coming closer now. She could see it- the end was just thirty feet below her now.
Everything was spinning around her now. Or was it her swirling? Lily wasn't sure. She was much to caught up in her memories. They were flying by her faster then ever before. Everything. Her entire life flashed before her eyes.
Lily felt James' lips on her forehead now. He kissed her forehead.
"I love you..."
Everything slammed to a stop. Her memories, her falling, everything slammed to a stop. Lily was burning now. James' warmth was not only felt in the hand he held, but in her forehead, at the touch of his lips.
Lily was weightless now. She was floating- or did it just feel as though she was floating?
The ground, the pile of hay, the astronomy tower- they all disappeared. She surrounded by darkness before everything became mindbendingly bright. Blindingly bright. And white. Lily thought she had died for sure, she had gone to heaven... Until her eyes flew open and she sat up in her hospital bed. In the hospital wing. She was alive. She sat, breathing heavily while staring in front of her.
"Lily?- Oh Merlin, Lily, you're awake..."
Lily was engulfed in James arms. She sat motionless for a moment before leaning into James. She closed her eyes and took in a breath.
"James..." She murmured. "You saved me..."
Author's Note: Hey. This is a one-shot I actually typed up a month or so ago, just haven't published. I'm not sure were I got the idea for this. It's obviously alternate universe, since Lily never fell of the astronomy tower and did a Dumbledore.
To clear everything up, Lily did fall off the astronomy tower and landed on a the pile of hay Hagrid left out for some sort of creature. The hay sort of cushioned her fall...
I'll try and update some of my other stories soon.
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