Summary: I've never done a James/Lily fic before but I thought it's time I should. My version of how they got together. One-shot.
James Potter was eleven years old, sat at the back of Potions class, watching the girl a few rows in front of him. Lily her name was Lily, and he didn't even try to stop staring at her. And she didn't know he existed.
James Potter was twelve years old, and Lily Evans barely seemed to notice him, no matter what he did. She didn't seem to like him all that much, either.
James Potter was thirteen years old, and he was determined to finally ask out Lily Evans.
"Go on, then." Sirius muttered, pushing him forward. "Now, while she's on her own, might be good."
James walked quickly forwards, to where Lily was sat in the shade of a tree.
"Hi, Evans." He said brightly. She looked up, surprised.
"Ah...did you see the quidditch match yesterday?"
"Yeah. Well done, I'm glad we won." She glanced past him, and he realised she was waiting for someone.
"Yes?" She sounded a little annoyed, and James tried not to blush.
"I was wondering...if...maybe..."
"Lily! Sorry I'm late." James turned, and sneered.
"What do you want, Snivelly?"
Snape glared at James, then looked back at Lily. "What are you talking to him for?" Lily rolled her eyes at his words.
"She can talk to whoever she wants." James snapped.
"Severus, don't start." Lily sighed. "Let's just go." She got up, and walked away with Snape. Snape of all people.
James Potter was fifteen, and had finally asked Lily Evans out.
She'd said no. He didn't understand, Snape had called her a Mudblood and she was mad at him, James? Sure, she'd looked mad at Snivellus too, but why had she said no?
"Why?" He asked, out loud.
"I told you, mate. She thinks you've got a big head." Sirius sighed. "Let it go, there's plenty more girls out there."
"He doesn't want anyone else, do you James?" Remus smiled. "He's liked Lily for years."
"Yeah. No chance, though, have I?" James sighed heavily.
James Potter was sixteen, and was losing interest in hexing people. It just wasn't as fun anymore.
Maybe he was doing it for Lily, a little bit. But she didn't seem to notice. True, she hadn't tried to stop him jinxing Snape anymore - he was glad to see that whatever had been left of that ridiculous friendship had gone - but she still wouldn't go out with him. He asked often, now, every time he saw her. So far, she'd only glared at him and walked away.
And so, by April, he stopped. He hadn't stopped liking her, but he'd given up on her liking him. And, other than Snape, he given up jinxing people completely.
Didn't mean he was a model student, though. He still messed around, after all what was life without fun?
"Mr. Potter? Do you think you could start this potion now?" Professor Slughorn asked. James, who had been looking at the back of Lily's head, shook himself awake.
Ten minutes later, his potion was bright pink.
It was supposed to be blue.
James couldn't understand it, he wasn't usually this bad at potions. Of course, listening to Lily joking with Slughorn might have distracted him a little bit.
"Ah, James, what did you do to this?" Slughorn sighed, looking into James's cauldron.
"I...haven't got a clue." James sighed. "Sorry, sir. I'll clean it away."
"Wait, James. Wait." Slughorn said. "Let's see if we can rescue this. LIly? You've finished, haven't you."
"Yes, sir." Lily called back.
"Right., come here and see if you can help Mr. Potter salvage something of his."
"What?" Lily spun round, looked from James to Slguhorn. "But..."
"Come on, Lily, I'm sure you can teach him something." Slughorn walked away to check on the other students, and with a loud sigh Lily walked to the back of the room.
"How the hell did you manage this, Potter?" Lily asked, but she was smiling. He couldn't help but smile back.
"Maybe I forgot a few ingredients?"
"Looks like you might have done." She nodded. "Look over the instructions. What did you forget?"
James squinted across the room, looked at the words chalked on the board. "Maybe I didn't put in...um, the armadillo bile." He said finally. "And...the daisy roots..."
"Yeah, looks like you sliced up your roots and just left them." She smiled, indicating the small pile on his desk.
"Maybe you should pull your head out of the clouds." She said, shaking her head as she set about trying to fix his potion.
"Aw, it's so happy there." He replied, and she laughed. She actually laughed. He felt a leap of hope, and forced himself to think carefully.
"Ah, is it OK to talk to you while you work, or will that just distract you?" He asked carefully.
"You can talk, I don't mind." She replied. "But you are supposed to be watching."
"I saw your Quidditch practice the other day." She said absently, measuring out the armadilo bile. "Do you think we could win the cup?"
"I...I think we have a good shot." He nodded. She stopped, looked up at him. "What?"
"Usually, if someone asked you that, you'd say something like 'the only way we can lose is if I pass out'." She replied.
"Yeah, well I had to deflate my head some." He smiled. "It was getting hard to fit through doors." She laughed, and his heart swelled with hope. Throughout the rest of the lesson, he talked, joked, and actually made her laugh. And, after she gave up on his potion (which had turned a deeper shade of pink) she stayed sat with him, talking and joking back.
"Clear away now, class." Slughorn called, and she helped him clear away his mess. He was just toying with the idea of asking her out again when the bell rang.
"See you around, Potter." She said, smiling at him.
James Potter flew to the ground, the tiny snitch held tight in his fist, the deafening roar of the crowd and his team-mates ringing in his ears.
They'd won the cup.
"Party in the common room!" Someone yelled, and the Gryffindor team sprinted to the changing rooms.
Walking into the common room a few minutes later, James beamed at the students around him, who were celebrating loudly. He forced his way through the crowd, being hugged and clapped on the back and congratulated, over to the drinks table. And saw Lily.
She turned around when she heard him, grinned. "Well done." She said, and threw her arms around him. Hugged him. She was actually hugging him.
It was only brief, but it left him dazed. "See you around." She siad brightly, and, grabbing a drink from the table, made her way back over to her mates. James stood exactly where he was, his eyes glazed over, until, a few minutes later, Remus walked over to him, and put his hand on his shoulder.
"She hugged me." James said, smiling goofily.
"I know, I saw. But it was about five minutes ago, Prongs. You might wanna move away, before she sees you."
"Yeah. Sure." He didn't move, though, until, sighing, Remus turned him and steered him over to Sirius and Peter.
James Potter stood in Kings cross, looking for his parents. His sixth year was over...next year he'd leave Hogwarts for good. It was a bit scary, really, but he forced himself not to think about it.
"See you in September, Potter." Lily said as she walked past. She was saying it to pretty much everyone, but James didn't care. She'd actually spoke to him, without him speaking to her first. Maybe there was hope after all.
"He's gone again." Sirius sighed. "Someone hex him."
"Ah, don't do that." James said dreamily.
James Potter was seventeen, and sat in the common room and his own, one thursday towards the end of September. He jumped when he heard footsteps on the stairs, and gaped when he saw Lily Evans walking down the girls staircase.
"Oh." She stopped when she saw him. "I was just...couldn't sleep."
"I'll...go back up." She started to turn.
"No, it's OK. Sit down." He said quickly. She hesitated, then walked over and sat on a chair nearby. "What's wrong?" He asked suddenly.
"Nothing...I'm just tired." She muttered. "Study a lot."
"What, perfect Lily struggling. No way." He smiled, but she didn't smile back.
"I'm not perfect." She murmured.
"You are to me." He said, just as quietly. She looked up at him, surprised, and he felt heat creep up his face. When she realised he was blushing, she smiled.
"That was the sweetest thing anyone's ever said to me." She said quietly. He looked a little surprised, relieved, pleased.
He paused, then spoke again. "What's really wrong? You don't look tired, you look sad."
"It's nothing. Just a couple of little things. They don't matter."
"They matter to you." He said, and she nodded.
"Look, I get why you don't want to tell me. We're not exactly best friends, are we. But...if you ever wanna talk...I promise, I'll listen, and believe me, I'm really good at keeping secrets."
"Thanks." She said, and he just nodded. Don't push her, don't force the issue.
"It's just...thins thing...well, the thing the Slytherins... and You-Know-Who and his Death Eaters say..." She sighed. "Am I a good witch, James?"
He blinked when she used his first name. It was the first time he ever remembered her doing so.
"You're a great witch. A brilliant one."
"You don't think...being muggle-born..."
"Hey, don't listen to all that rubbish." He said firmly. "It's not true...Lily." He almost expected her to tell him not to use her first name, but she didn't. "It doesn't matter, honest. You're a great witch. Trust me. And the Slytherins, you're worth so much more than all of them. Trust me." He repeated, and she nodded.
"OK. You're right."
"What else? You said a couple of things?"
"Ah...it's my sister." She said finally.
"What, is she sick or something?" He sounded genuinely concerned, and she was surprised. But then, James was different than he used to be. She'd noticed that.
"No, it's nothing like that. It's just...she hates me."
"Hates you? Why would she hate you?"
"Because I'm a witch, and she's not. She used to be jealous, she wanted to come here too. But now...now she acts like she's disgusted by magic...by me. She wont answer my letters, didn't talk to me over the summer. She hates me." She looked so sad he got up, walked over to her and hugged her. She didn't push him away, but hugged him back.
"Do you think she might just be scared?" He asked finally, drawing back.
"Scared? Of me?"
"Yeah. Of you, magic. She doesn't understand it, does she? And people usually fear what they don't understand." She blinked at him.
"You know, that actually made sense." She said.
"What, I made sense? Don't tell anyone, will you?" He said, and she smiled.
"You're not such an idiot, you know that?"
"Yeah, not anymore." He said. "Head boy now."
"Yeah. Bet the shock nearly killed you."
"It nearly killed you, too." He smirked, and even though he didn't know it, her stomach jolted. She looked down in surprise. Telling herself she'd imagined it, she looked up and smiled back.
"Don't worry about your sister. She'll come 'round." He said, and she nodded.
"I hope so." She replied. "I think I'll go back to bed now."
"Yeah, me too." He said, and they walked over to the stairs together.
"See you tomorrow." She said, when they reached the staircases and had to separate.
"Yeah, goodnight, Lily."
He wrestled with his nerve all the way to the top of the stairs. Finally, at the top, he spun round. "Lily?"
She was at the top too, and turned back to him. "Yeah?"
"The next Hogsmeade weekend...it's this Saturday, isn't it?"
"Do you...do you think maybe we could meet up? In the Three Broomsticks, maybe? Just...just a drink..."
He'd never, ever blushed before when he'd asked her out. But now his face was glowing red. She hesitated, considering. Finally, she nodded.
"Real - I mean, great. Ah, around one?"
"Yeah. See you there." She turned, and he watched her go, smiling to himself. Finally, when he couldn't see her anymore, he turned and walked slowly up the staircase.
By two o' clock on Saturday afternoon, Lily's jaw ached from laughing. What do you know, James Potter wasn't so arrogant anymore, so annoying.
And she told him so.
He smiled, looking so happy her heart melted.
"Does that maybe mean you'd meet me again next Hogsmeade weekend?" He asked carefully.
"Yeah, I think maybe it does." She nodded.
A month later, James Potter walked across the grounds, holding Lily Evans's hand. He'd never been so happy and she...she actually seemed happy too. He hadn't been able to wait until the next Hogsmeade weekend, and so on the Wednesday evening after that drink, he'd asked her to walk around the lake with him. And she had, and the following Saturday they'd done the same, and then again and again they'd just walked and talked. Two weeks after their first date, blushing furiously and looking hard at the floor, he'd asked her if she go out with him, properly. Like, be his girlfriend. A real couple.
And she'd said yes.
Now, he walked her over to the stands, where a few people were already gathered, ready to watch the first Quidditch match of the season.
"Good luck." She said brightly, and kissed him. Smiling dopely, he nodded, and walked over to the changing rooms.
"So, it's true then?" Lily turned in surpirse, looked a the boy who'd once been her best friend.
"Severus, you're not supposed to be over here. This is the Gryffindor stands." Lily replied coolly.
"You and Potter? How could you, Lily? Him? You always hated him..."
"I didn't hate him. And he's changed."
"People don't change, Lily." He spat.
"You did." She replied quietly.
"What? What do you mean?"
"I never thought you would end up so obsessed with the dark arts, so desperate to be a death eater...I never thought you'd call me a mudblood."
"I said I was sorry -"
"And it wasn't enough. And yes, it's true." She turned away, but he grabbed her arm.
"You can't, you can't be -"
"Hey, let go of her." Sirius said loudly, as he, Remus and Peter walked over.
"Go away, Black." Snape spat.
"You're not a Gryffindor, Snivelly. Get back over to the Slytherin end."
"This has nothing to do with you lot." Snape snapped.
"Yes, it does." Remus said. "We happen to care about Lily. Leave her alone."
Snape glared at them for a few seconds, then turned and walked away with out another word.
"Thanks." Lily sighed.
"No problem." Sirius said, dropping into a seat. "Ooh, it's starting."
January, it was cold outside but James Potter didn't feel it. Laughing, his whole face alight, he was spinning Lily Evans around and around, while she laughed and shrieked.
"Put me down you nutter." She yelled.
"Say it again." He said, still spinning.
"OK, OK. I love you too. Now put me down."
"One more time. Then I will, I promise."
"I love you too, James Potter." She said, and he finally stopped, set her down.
"I think it's been worth the wait." He said quietly, grinning at her.
And they both knew, just knew that they'd spend the rest of their lives together...