A/N: Now that exams are over, I have had time to reread my work so far, and I've decided to pull off, edit (ie re-write) and re-post the story. I've also decided, since slowly starting to rewrite this fic, to keep it to four parts and an epilogue (instead of 7 parts and an epilogue as I had originally planned) Hope you enjoy and please review! RBS
Disclaimer: Characters belong to JK Rowling
How It Came To Be
Remus Lupin- 1st September
Lily Evans didn't know, and I for one didn't want to be there when she found out. For the safety of the Hogwarts Express and its passengers, I sent up a prayer for those within a two mile radius of Lily when she found out, particularly for my mate Prongs, who would bear the brunt of the damage. Just in case.
It had been with complete surprise when I saw James Potter open his Hogwarts letter and see two badges fall out of the envelope: his Gryffindor Quidditch Captain badge as well as something completely foreign to him. The school crest, not unlike the Prefects badge I had in my hands, with the words Head Boy engraved into it was a sign of authority and power I knew James was afraid of. He sat speechless, as his mother bustled around him, attempting to serve out breakfast for the boys, before looking over James's shoulder and seeing the two badges.
"Oh Jamesie made Head Boy! Just like your father! It's quite odd, though. Usually the Head Boy is a prefect in sixth year… Must owl your father with this great news… now where is that pesky owl…" said Mrs Potter, before rushing out of the room. Her red hair streaked with grey was pulled into a messy ponytail, her dowdy apron the sign of a caring, doting mother. Yes, Potter men had a soft spot for redheads.
Mr Potter, on the other hand, was a tall, thin sort of man with a ram rod straight back. His once jet black hair had the propensity to be messy, like James, when allowed to grow out, but was now flecked with silver, giving him an air of sophistication, distinction and wisdom that can only be found amongst those who had fought in the War against Grindelwald and now You-Know-Who.
As Sirius whooped with joy for a full ten minutes, James looked up at me earnestly, in apology. I knew that Dumbledore's decision would not have been made in the spur of the moment, and that James was capable of responsibility and maturity.
"Well, I guess it wouldn't do if the Head Boy was a werewolf," I said, half jokingly.
I slid open the door to the prefect compartment, meeting a rather unfamiliar sight. James slumped over the table in the prefects' compartment, his hands in his messy black hair, his hazel eyes dulled, staring blankly at the latest edition of Transfiguration Today which he restlessly tossed to the side. His Head Boy badge was neatly pinned next to his Quidditch Captain badge on his ironed, black robes. His tie was skewed, loosened with the top button of his shirt undone.
Not many people in Hogwarts knew or recognised this, but James was equal to Lily Evans academically. Outstanding in Transfiguration, Arthimancy, Defence Against the Dark Arts, Ancient Runes, Charms, Herbology, Potions, Astronomy, History of Magic, Care of Magical Creatures and Muggle Studies. The illusion of the carefree, self-important Quidditch star was merely that, an illusion.
James Potter did not exude the pressure he was under. His parents, whilst not muggle hating and disapproving of Voldemort and his beliefs, where nonetheless old fashioned in their expectations of James. Quidditch was his father's first love, and academic supremacy his mother's aspiration for him. But only the Marauders and the Hogwarts staff knew of Mr and Mrs Potter's expectations from their son. Most just saw him as an "arrogant, bullying toerag", merely because he despised those who exercised the Dark Arts. That and he was in love with Lily Evans, who had been blind to her ex-best friend's infatuation with the dark arts up until the end of fifth year. Severus Snape was, for five years, the bane of his existence.
His mind was filled with tumultuous thoughts regarding his final year in Hogwarts and his future, and he didn't realise my presence till I sat down next to him, picking up the discarded magazine.
"Moony, I've given up" he told me resolutely, his hazel eyes lifeless. "I've been thinking, and with NEWTS, Quidditch, head boy and all the classes I'm taking, you'd agree with me that I should back off from Lily this year. You know, she hasn't wanted me for the past 5 years, so why should she want me now?"
I nodded, replying "Prongs, if this is what you want, we won't stop you". I knew how much it hurt him to say those words, but I had to commend him for making such a difficult decision, considering he saw them as soul mates.
Our conversation was cut short, though, with the appearance of the prefects.
At precisely 10.58, Lily entered the compartment.
"Potter, what are you doing here? Your big head couldn't fit in any of the other compartments" Lily said with a smirk as she gracefully sat down. Noticing the badge, she looked pointedly at me, to which I shrugged nonchalantly. "Potter, I think Remus would appreciate getting his badge back, it's almost time for the meeting to start."
Looking up from Transfiguration Today which he had resumed reading, James replied coolly "You may not believe me, but I did get this badge from Dumbledore. I didn't steal it from Remus. You could even ask him, before jumping to conclusions." Turning to the gawking prefects, he said authoritatively "Now that my being Head Boy has been sort out," glaring at Lily, "I think its time to go through-"
"DUMBLEDORE MADE YOU HEAD BOY?! YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. HOW CAN I WORK WITH THIS ARROGANT PRAT FOR THE WHOLE YEAR AND REMAIN SANE?" she burst out without a second thought.
We prefects sat; mortified that Lily's temper would turn onto them if they attempted to intervene on what promised to be a roaring good verbal spat.
"Evans, the prefects are still here you know and-"
"POTTER! You can't just waltz in here and order everyone about as if you own the place, even if you are head boy. Just because your family is so high and mighty in the magical world doesn't mean that it means two stuffs to me-"
James took off his glasses and rubbed the bridge of his nose, before tiredly saying "Evans, can we talk about this later? Just that the prefects may want to get back to their friends before we reach Hogwarts, and we have a list of things that have to be discussed"
Blushing furiously at her big mouth, she allowed James to continue with his speech. For the first time in our lives, we had James Potter had the upper hand and Lily had no witty come back aimed at bruising his ego.
All in all, it wasn't anywhere near exciting a meeting than we had anticipated. Far too productive considering the past interactions of the Head Girl and Head boy.
I stood outside the compartment, waiting for Prongs and Lily to finish their little discussion. The door had been left open, and I was privy to the whole conversation.
Not intentionally, of course.
"Potter, no" said Lily wearily.
"Pardon Evans? I was about to ask whether it'd be possible for my Head Boy duties to be adjusted with Quidditch trials next month, and that we should have November's Rounds schedule sorted out before the first Hogsmeade weekend. I won't have time after that till after the first Quidditch game," said the rather flat and tired voice of Prongs.
"What? You weren't going to ask me out?" exclaimed Lily sarcastically. "No witty comments on my appearance, no hexing of the Slytherin prefects? How long is this going to last?"
"If you're done, Evans. You know, the world doesn't revolve around me asking you out or just me in general. And for the records, I haven't hexed a student in corridors all through sixth year. But you were so wrapped up in hating me, you didn't see, did you? I'd also appreciate it if you didn't talk about my family, at least to me, like that again. I don't care if you insult me, no matter how unfounded your accusations are, but I draw the line when you insult the people I care for. We have patrols in an hour, Evans. I'll meet you back here" James said in a clipped and controlled tone, and then walked out of the compartment.
And left a confused and dazed Lily Evans behind him, staring at the place where he had just stood moments earlier in disbelief.
I too was in disbelief. For the first time in his life, Prongs had walked out on Lily, not even taking a second glance.
"James?" she whispered.
I hastily went after James, who hadn't realised I was waiting for him.
Back at Marauders compartment, James was staring moodily out the window.
As a slid the door shut, Padfoot slid up next to me, whispering in my ear "What's wrong with Prongs, mate? He hasn't looked like that since… well, ever"
Sighing, I recounted the events in the Prefects' compartment, making sure that my voice was low as to not distress James anymore than he already was.
Although I doubt he would have heard Sirius letting off Dungbombs in front of him, he was so enraptured in his own thoughts.
"Moony, you know what we have to do right?" Sirius said earnestly. "We can't have our year or James future happiness ruined because James decides to be a bloody stick in the mud"
"I think I know what you mean, but I think it would be best to leave it to fate" I replied.
"Leave what to fate?" cut in Wormtail, who had given up on catching James' attention by throwing Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans at him. "Anyone know when we get to Hogwarts? I can't wait for the feast… I hope they have..." he said to no one in particular.
James shook his head, clearing his head of whatever had been bothering him, before checking the time on his watch which had been given to him on his seventeenth birthday by his parents. "Guys, I've got patrols. I'll be back in an hour or so."
After Peter and Sirius drifted off to flirt with the slimy Slytherins, and James, after patrols, decided to be ten chapters ahead in Transfiguration, I decided to visit the Head Girl and her best friend, Mary McDonald. Before entering, I noticed the topic of their discussion, and shamelessly started eavesdropping on their conversation.
"Mary, I don't know what has got into him! There was no stupid comments or lecherous stares. I swear James Potter is smoking some banned substance… He cut me off as I was talking! The audacity of him! Mary, are you listening to me?" Lily ranted to her best friend, Mary McDonald. "I mean, he didn't even pick on the Slytherins, who were being their usual slimy selves. There is seriously something wrong with him."
Sometimes I wondered why Lily was so set against James, always finding fault in what he was doing, and question his motives when he did something well and by the book.
Mary nodded, hopefully, in a sympathetic way. I knew she didn't understand Lily. For the past six years, Lily could not stop complaining about the attention James Potter gave her, and now that he wasn't giving her the time of day, Lily was still complaining. After past plans together (i.e. Mary and the Marauders) at matchmaking, we had resigned ourselves to the fact that perhaps James and Lily were never meant to be, at least not by our hands.
"Lily, remember the train ride home at the end of sixth year when you told James to shove off?"
Lily answered in the affirmative with a gruff "yeah".
"Well, I'd say he's thought about it, and decided to do what you asked." Mary reasoned.
"But he's been asking me out since second year, and he hasn't listened to me before, so why has he suddenly started ignoring me like this?" Lily asked rhetorically.
"Well, maybe he's matured a bit," Mary said, before changing the subject to something more mundane and rational. "So when's the next Hogsmeade weekend?"
Hmmm, I think it's the weekend before Halloween
"The weekend before Halloween" replied an excited Lily. "Are you up to the Shrieking Shack?" she teased Mary, who, like many locals of Hogsmeade, had a morbid fear of my hiding place.
I decided that it would be safe to make my entrance.
"Do you mind if I come in? It's just that there's no one to have a decent conversation with in my compartment."
We were in for an interesting year.