Wow. I was writing this as a one-shot, but it got so freaking long that I had to split it into chapters! Pleaspleasepleaseplease review!

*****

"I'll kill you," James said, walking up to Remus and Sirius, his voice low and deadly. "I will rip your spleen out through your eye socket. Then I will-"

"Prongs!" Sirius interrupted what was sure to be a very macabre description of exactly how angry James was. "I'm sure Moony has a very good explanation. Moony?"

"Well…uh…she asked me, and I didn't want to hurt her feelings?" he said, hoping this was an acceptable answer.

"I'll kill you!" James said louder, lunging at Remus, who ducked.

"James, be rational-"

"I love her!" he said. "How can you go to the ball with her!?"

"As friends!" Remus cried. "Only as friends, she said! It's tomorrow, and neither of us have dates! I knew you'd already asked twice, and so there was no way she'd go with you, so when she asked if I wanted to go as friends, I said alright!"

James sighed. "Okay," he said.

Then Sirius grinned. "I have an idea," he said slowly.

*****

Remus hated lying to his best friend.

Of course, he was only half lying. Not even half, he was a quarter lying. That had to count for something, right?

Maybe, but did it really matter?

No. All that mattered was that a part of him was lying to James.

You see, Remus wasn't lying when he said Lily asked him. That was true. He also wasn't lying when he said that Lily wanted to go as friends. She had used those exact words. But, however much he hated to admit it, he didn't want to go as friends.

Bugger.

He knew he didn't love her like James did. He knew that no one could love Lily like James did. But he also knew that going to the ball with Lily wouldn't be good for the crush he had on her that he was trying to starve.

But how could he have said no?

Bugger.

This could only end badly.

Especially if Sirius intended to put his "plan" into action.

*****

Lily was feeling immensely guilty for what she had done.

She knew she shouldn't have done it. She knew it was a bad idea. She knew there would be consequences.

And she had done it anyway. And it was too late now.

You see, for the past several years, James Potter asked Lily out on a regular basis. She always declined. He was arrogant, pigheaded, and a jerk. But this year, seventh year, they were both heads. He had been nice to her. He had been kind to the first years and he hadn't hexed Severus once.

She was beginning to like him.

So what had she done? Declined every offer she'd been given to go to the ball, in the hopes that he would ask her.

He hadn't, so she'd resorted to drastic measures.

She hadn't intended to, honestly. It's just that, when he saw him and Remus and Sirius in the corner, he wondered.

That small wonder turned into immense curiosity, and the curiosity turned into a plan.

A plan to make James Potter jealous.

But she had never intended to act on it…

She hadn't!

…Only, when she heard that James was going to the ball with Mary Thompson, she had acted impulsively.

She had marched up to Remus and asked him to go with her.

And now she was feeling immensely guilty.

But what could she do?

So she started to get dressed, and hoped for the best.