Ah, Lily Evans… Damn her, thought James Potter, as he absentmindedly stared at the bane of his existence.
The gorgeous redhead was actually sitting opposite him today, it was so unprecedented that some people actually stopped and stared.
He figured she must have been so distracted and depressed over that wanker cheating on her that she had forgotten to do her usual scan of the Gryffindor table, in order to ensure she could see where he was sitting, and then move as far away as possible.
Whilst some people screamed, James Potters head automatically looked up to the source of such a loud noise. He was greeted with a truly disturbing slideshow of images scrolling across the Great Hall ceiling. After a little confusion, the rest of the Hall seemed to catch up with James, and a collective "Eww," was issued by the room, followed swiftly by laughter.
"Potter!" screamed a very irate Professor, "Detention!"
James Potter turned as startled as everyone else. Detention? What had he done?
Well thinking about it, many things over the years, but this, he could honestly say, had absolutely nothing to do with him.
No one, however, seemed to believe him, in fact no one seemed even slightly interested in his innocence. Curious, how he and his fellow Marauders, just seemed to get blamed for everything these days.
Honestly, did no one realise how difficult this marauding lark was? The imagination, the skill, the time and preparation it required? It was not the kind of thing one entered into lightly. Therefore it is extremely difficult, to be responsible for all the mayhem, throughout a castle full of teenagers. Even if they did try their very hardest.
Back to the situation at hand, that of his imminent punishment, which was sure to involve cleaning Pringles toilet, without magic or something equally disgusting. All for something he had no part in.
What a conundrum. Who had the wit and talent to pull of something to rival some of his best stunts and implicate him, the greatest prankster ever, in the process? It was beautiful, it was a work of art, the magic was flawless, the charm work required …. Only one person was that good at charms other than himself… But no… it was ludicrous…but then again…
He sat there pondering for a moment then slowly lifted his arm and pointed, eyes wide at the girl opposite him.
"It… it was you," he said in a hushed kind of voice
After an awed pause, "Oh… Oh bravo!" he said clapping enthusiastically.
She looked uncomfortable for a moment while looking into his eyes, before a hesitant grin appeared, "You're not going to turn rat, and tell on me are you?"
"Well I don't know, after all I am getting the blame for this. It seems rather unfair, a detention and whatnot. You are aware that they don't get more fun, the more you have?"
"Really, but why else would you continue to do things that deserve detentions? Are you striving to break a record?" She replied raising an eyebrow.
He scoffed, "honey, there is no need for me to strive for it. I broke that record in half… with Sirius … three years ago."
She laughed and mumbled, "I know, I remember."
He zoned out for a second with a reminiscent grin, "Good times… Hang on you remember?" he asked, beaming. "Well what a high honour, and since I feel so honoured and detentions have long since lost their impact, I won't grass on you, But I'm afraid I'm going to require a reward." He grinned.
"Thanks," she smiled.
"No problem, wouldn't want to break your record." He said before adding, "I suppose that if I'm going to do the time, I at least want some part in the crime." She scrunched her nose up at his corniness. Ignoring that, he proceeded to pull out his wand, and added music and various unflattering captions to the slide show of Derek Lambert, in various unattractive situations, showing on the ceiling.
She looked up at his additions, smiling.
Butterflies had been swarming in his stomach for years because of that smile. He would do anything for that smile. Sadly it almost never appeared for him. This detention was really turning out to be worth it he thought.
"You enjoyed that," she said looking at him out of the corner of her eye.
"Too true. I've wanted to knock his face in, ever since I heard what he'd done to you."
The corner of her mouth quirked but she made no other recognition of his statement. "How do you know this song?"
He laughed, "You think all the years I've been practically stalking you, I didn't take notice of the things you like and dislike. You love Muggle music."
Looking apologetic she said: "sorry, I guess your right."
"Of course I am, aren't I always?" he laughed.
Realizing he sounded big headed, something that Lily had loudly condemned him for regularly in the past, he decide a swift change of topic was needed.
"So, about my reward?" he asked uncertainly.
This caught her attention. James Potter was never uncertain about anything. He would always dive head first in to everything and anything he did. She used to think he was stupid for it. Now she rather admired his courage. She often wished she didn't over think things as much as she did, that she could have his kind of confidence
What a turner around. Lily Evans was actually wishing for the same kind of confidence the guy with the biggest head in the world had. She almost laughed, but instead she waited patiently for him to continue.
"Go out with me Evans?" he flinched a little, probably expecting her to mentally or physically abuse him, like she normally did when he asked that question.
Instead her startling green eyes turned to him and stared in to his bright gold ones.
Surprising them both she said quite clearly, "I think, I would like that very much."
She hadn't meant to say that.
Though recently she had seemed to be constantly debating with herself as to whether she wanted to keep fighting him. Not because she cared in the slightest that when they argued they attracted the attention of everyone in the immediate vicinity, and even some who were not. Instead because she had found that the more time she spent with him the more she liked him.
He swallowed hard then said with a forced laugh, "I'm sorry, come again, I think I misheard you."
Well she done it now, why not take a page out of his book. Do exactly what she had been wishing to be able to do, and dive right in, "I said, Yes, I would very much like to go out with you."
James stared vacantly for so long Lily resorted to waving a hand in front of his face, "Earth to Potter?"
Suddenly his eyes refocused, he reached out with seeker reflexes, grabbed her hand and dragged her out of the Great Hall, through the Entrance Hall, and into the dark grounds. His hand was warm and fit hers so perfectly, that it gave her tingles. She was so caught up; she forgot to be nervous when they finally came to a stop just by the Forbidden Forest, well out of sight of anyone back at the school.
"I didn't mean right now." she giggled.
She stopped abruptly when he spun and stared at her, in the dim light emanating from the bluebell flames he had lit. His eyes were intense.
One hand came to rest on her shoulders, his other hand at her waist, his fingers biting into her hip. "Please don't mess with me Evans. I can take a joke just as well as the next person, but…but if we are going to do this… really going to do this, I …I need to know..." He took a deep breath as if bracing himself, "I know what you think of me, but this isn't just a bit of fun for me. I want you. I have wanted you for as long as I can remember and I don't think I'll be able to take it if you change you mind tomorrow…So I'm giving you one last chance to back out," he said in a pained voice. "I'm going to ask you one last time, and I want you to really think before you answer. Evans… Lily, will you go out with me?"
That was the first time she was actually paying attention enough to see the fear that he went through him, every time she was about to rejected him. Normally he had turned away before she could get a look. Or maybe she admitted silently, she had never bothered to look in the first place.
Whatever the reason the desperation she saw, the desperation for her to take him seriously, shook her.
There had been times over the years, when she had almost believed him, believed he might actually mean some of the thing he said to her, but she had always dismissed it. This time was different, this time she had bothered to look, and from that one look she could tell, he was being sincere.
All of a sudden she felt very small and unworthy of him and his feeling for her. The feelings she had been dismissing as childish, imaginary, and insincere for years. It hit her like a blow to the stomach, he had meant every moment of it, and in return for his honesty she had been slowly crushing him.
Yet he continued to try. Her respect for him began to grow again. He went for what he wanted, and followed what he believed in, no matter what the cost, even if it was to his pride.
She was so lucky that a man like him had taken an interest in a closed minded person like her. She had assumed to know what kind of person he was now, based on the boy he used to be, but she had never taken the time to look at the young man he had become. She realised with a start she had written him off almost from the start.
Whilst she may have been right at the time, he had changed. If she thought about it, it was her fault they had not been friends before this year, their final year. She was so worried about looking like a hypocritical arse, that she had been ignoring her instincts and her feelings.
She was exactly what she had been accusing him of being for years. Self centred.
"Yes, I want to go out with you, but I'm starting to think that I don't deserve you," she said nervously.
His smile was so wide and so beautiful that it made her blood pump faster through her veins.
"It's me who doesn't deserve you. Which is why I'm so surprised you've finally caved. I've always known I wasn't good enough," he whispered while he hesitantly raised his hand to touch the tips of her hair. He felt the soft strands between his finger tips for a moment, watching his hand in fascination.
He slowly ran his hand up length of her hair, looking as if in a daze. He was totally unable to comprehend that she was actually allowing this. When he reached her face, he tentatively brushed his knuckles against her cheek.
Goodness her skin was soft. He was hooked; he didn't think anyone else would ever feel the same to him. He felt like he wanted to touch every bit of her he could reach.
He ran his thumb across her bottom lip and her lips parted slightly at his touch. He wanted to taste her.
He cautiously leaned in, frightened of her reaction, but worried he would explode if he didn't take action soon. He could feel her soft, warm, breath caressing his face now, he was so close. He paused, he didn't move all the way in, he needed to know that she really wanted this.
It felt like an eternity. Her eyes quickly dropped to his lips, before she moved the last few millimetres. He was so shocked for a moment he didn't kiss back. He had been so sure that this was never going to happen, but he wasn't a Marauder for nothing and he recovered swiftly. His hand still touching her face, his lips gently began to caress hers.
He ran his tongue over her bottom lip and she opened her mouth to him, delicately pressing her tongue to his, he could faintly taste the strawberry tart she had had at dinner. She inhaled sharply through her nose, and his hormones went haywire. He walked her backwards until her back hit the tree they had been standing next to, he pressed his body to hers and he kissed her desperately, frightened that this was some kind of cruel dream.
The fear this thought incited caused him to take the hand that had been resting on the tree beside her head and start running it up and down her rib cage, eventually brushing the underside of her breast, causing her breath to hitch. Her own delicate hand grabbed the front of his shirt, scrunched it up, and pulled him closer to her, causing him to push her so firmly into the tree, he was sure he would crush her, but from the reactions he was receiving she didn't seem to mind at all.
He tore his mouth away from hers causing her to whimper. Never wanting to deny her anything ever again, he went quickly back to her lips. Eventually he pulled away again, but only so he could lower his mouth the smooth skin of her neck.
He hovered a moment inhaling the light perfume she was wearing (always the same one) before he kissed her neck, lightly at first, as if to gauge her reaction. When she arched into him a little he proceeded to place wet open mouthed kissed down the column of her throat.
She put her hand, which up until now had been clutching the tree, to his face and tried to pull his mouth back to hers. He complied willingly but not before touching the tip of his tongue to her skin, she tasted heavenly and he couldn't resist sucking on her pulse point. Which he noticed, absentmindedly, was racing.
She quickly ran her hands inside his robes and under his shirt, touching his smooth, hard flesh, and making his stomach clench.
"I did it to get your attention," she said breathlessly.
He looked confused at the sudden change of topic then eloquently said "Eh…"
"The ceiling I did it so you would know that I didn't care about that wanker. I did it so you would go back to your old routine again."
"What?" he asked.
"As much as I appreciated the respect you showed by backing off this time when I got a boyfriend…as opposed to torturing him like you did to the others," she said frowning.
"okay, umm… yeah about that," he hazarded. "I'm sor-"
She cut him off waving an impatient hand. "Let me finish. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I … I missed you, and you're constant badgering. I didn't realise how much you were always around. I think that's when it really hit me that there might be something between us worth giving a shot."
Eventually he said smiling softly "Well, this definitely makes the detention worth it." In return for her admission, he shoved his knee between her legs, and kissed her so hard it took her breath away.
The next morning he saw her sitting at the table eating her breakfast, he was loathed to go over to her. He was still almost convinced she would reject him. Especially after his ever so helpful friends had told him he must have bumped his head and point blank refused to believe him, thinking it was part of some elaborate prank.
He felt the ever caring Sirius shove him painfully in the back "Come on then lover boy, go over your lady."
After pushing Sirius so hard he fell over, he walked towards Lily, like a man walking to the gallows. When he reached her, he stared into her eyes while he sat down slowly, silently begging her not to have changed her mind.
She furrowed her eyebrows momentarily causing his heart to sink low in his chest. Then she kissed him right there in the middle of the great hall. A silence, only ever achieved by professor Dumbledore fell.
Unlike before, only silence followed this loud noise and James didn't feel the slightest inclination to look for the source.
Then out of the shocked silence "Miss Evans! Detention"
"Revenge love, that and I couldn't have someone outdoing me. I've got a reputation to keep."
She pulled away, sighed, then winked at him, "Oh well, at least now we can clean Pringles' toilet together."