a/n-this is a 'deleted scene' from my story Just Friends. I had it all written up, then I realized it didn't fit in with that story at all, but I didn't want to just get rid of it. So now I'm posting it as a one-shot for all of you. If any of you read Just Friends, this was what happened originally in place of the scene the day before Lily's birthday. Enjoy!

Disclaimer-I don't own Harry Potter.

Hope

With a sigh, James collapsed onto the couch in the Head's Common Room next to Lily. He had just come from Quidditch practice, and he was exhausted. Lily took in his soaking wet robes and hair with an amused expression on her face.

"Fun practice?" She asked. "Who knew it could rain so much in January?"

James glared at her from behind his wet hair, which had fallen in front of his eyes.

"You really can't complain about it, though, you know." She pointed out. "You are the captain. You could have cancelled practice."

"And let the team think it's OK to be quitters every once in a while?" James demanded. "I don't think so."

At this, Lily couldn't help herself, she burst out laughing.

"What's so funny?" James demanded, looking a but bewildered at her sudden outburst.

"You do realize it is the middle of winter, correct?" Lily said. "So it's freezing outside. Add that to the fact that it's raining, and will probably start snowing soon. Yet you still have practice…because you're worried your team will think you're being a 'quitter' if you cancel practice?"

"It's not that funny." James muttered.

"No." Lily agreed slowly. "But the fact that you're soaking wet is pretty funny. Have you ever heard of indoor practices where you just talk about strategy."

"Yeah, I tried that once. Everyone fell asleep." James said dejectedly.

This brought another wave of laughter from Lily.

"OK, fine, that's the last time I tell you anything." Which just made Lily laugh again.

James rolled his eyes and stood up. "However amusing you might find this, I am rather damp, so I'm going to go change."

Lily nodded, turning back to the fire and her homework. "Don't forget we have patrol tonight."

James grumbled to himself as he walked across the common room to his bedroom, and Lily shook her head in amusement. It was silent in the room for a few minutes, the only sound heard above the crackling of the flames was the scratch of Lily's quill on her parchment. The silence was interrupted, however, by the sound of the portrait over the entrance to the room opening. Lily looked up to see Sirius, also dripping wet, stepping in.

"James is in his room changing." Lily told him, looking back down at her homework.

"OK." Sirius said with a shrug, walking over towards her. "But it was you I wanted to talk to."

"Er…alright." She said, setting her quill down and looking up at him, intrigued about whatever it could be that he wanted to discuss with her.

"I am here," he began, sounding very serious, no pun intended, "As the official representative of the Gryffindor Quidditch Team."

"Are you sure you want to talk to me and not James?" Lily interrupted.

Sirius nodded. "We unanimously voted that you would be the best person to approach about our problem. And by we, I mean the six other members of the team besides James."

Lily rose an eyebrow suspiciously.

"As you are aware, it is the middle of winter and extremely cold outside." Sirius stated. "Not to mention the fact that it is also raining. We on the Quidditch team value our good health, and wish our insane captain to stop making us practice in weather like this."

"So you came to talk to me about canceling the practices in extreme weather, such as tonight's?"

"Like I said before, it was a unanimous vote that you would be the best person to talk to?" Sirius repeated.

"Talk to about what, exactly?" Lily questioned.

"Look, Lily," Sirius said, dropping his official-sounding tone, "Let's just face the truth here, shall we? Everyone knows that James obsessed over you for years, don't even try to deny it. Someone doesn't show that much devotion to one person for six years, and just drop it the next day for friendship. We want you to talk to James about not making us practice in weather this bad in the middle of winter-we'll put up with it if it's closer to a match, but the next one isn't for another three months. We really think James will consider doing it if you are the one to suggest it, rather than someone on the team. He'll think we're quitters."

Lily smiled to herself at the irony of his last statement.

"If you really think I can do something about it," She began after a moment of silent thought, "Then I guess I could give it a shot. But I'm not making any promises."

"Thank you, Lily!" Sirius said enthusiastically, moving as if to throw his arms around her in a hug.

Lily held up a hand. "Save it for when you aren't wet, OK?"

That night during their patrol, Lily quite innocently brought up the health risks of practicing in weather such as that day's.

"If someone got sick, I bet Madame Pomfrey would have Dumbledore make you stop practicing." Lily told James. "Don't you think it would be better if you just cancelled practice, so you wouldn't have to risk that? I mean, then she'll be watching you even closer if she thinks you aren't treating your team right, and what if she tells Dumbledore to get a different captain for the team?"

James was silent for a moment. Then, "You know, I never thought about it like that. You're right Lily, I will cancel practice next time the weather gets too bad."

Lily permitted herself an impressed smile when James wasn't looking in her direction. Maybe Sirius (and the rest of the Quidditch team) was right. Maybe James really did listen to her. And-dare she think it?-maybe he did still like her…