I was so excited to start writing about 7th year that I haddd to update.

"Oy, Evans, hand that over!"

Lily jumped aside as Mary made a swipe for her everlasting eyeshadow.

"Get your own," Lily giggled, turning back to the mirror and delicately rubbing on the light, shimmery pink make up.

"The only color I have is blue," Mary pouted, watching Lily over her shoulder in the reflection of the mirror. "That's too obvious."

"What's obvious?" Lily asked, turning to hand her everlasting eyeshadow to Mary. She picked up her lash lengthening potion and turned back to the mirror.

"That I'm trying," Mary said, turning to her own mirror. "So I can make Black suffer. Why else would we be rubbing this rubbish on our faces?"

Lily blinked, lowering the bottle of her potion.

"I just want to look nice for the first day," she said defensively.

Mary let out a hollow laugh. "Come off it, you want to look good for Potter."

"I do not!" Lily protested. "If James doesn't like me the way I am, then bully for him."

"Ooh, James," Mary mocked, grinning at her best friend through the mirror's reflection. "Sorry, I forgot you two were on a first name basis."

"Oh shut it," Lily said grumpily. Mary had been extra merciless recently; Lily thought she was a bit bitter about not being able to finish the rest of their summer holiday together.

"We should apparate soon; it's already 10:30."

"What are we going to do with ourselves for half an hour?" Mary asked, not making a move to leave. "It's not like we have to go through the ordeal of traffic and parking and all that rubbish we had to do when we were underage."

Lily smiled and picked up her bottle of lash lengthening potion again. "I suppose so."

"You're nervous," Mary noted with a small grin.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Lily sniffed, although she stopped wringing her hands and forced them to her side. "Besides, you look ridiculous."

Lily motioned to her friend's outfit. Despite the cool fall season, Mary had wiggled into an impossibly tight shirt and a skirt.

"We're not supposed to wear our robes onto the train," Mary said lightly. "Those horrid, baggy things detract from my plans, anyways."

Lily rolled her eyes. "They're not baggy. We went to get them fitted better, remember?"

"Not tight enough for him," Mary said, narrowing her eyes across the Platform. Lily followed her gaze and saw Sirius and James greeting Pettigrew and Lupin. Lily looked away quickly; she wouldn't admit it, but she was nervous to face James.

They dragged their trunks across Platform 9 3/4 towards the Hogwarts Express. Lily looked around at the crowd. It was not the boisterous scene that she remembered from her first year. As she was not accustomed to, the noise was noticeably subdued, and people nervously glanced around as they hurried to their destination. Lily shook her head. Why wouldn't anyone believe that Hogwarts was the safest place in the world? Voldemort wasn't stupid enough to attack a large group of highly secured students and their magically capable parents.

"Lily, Mary!"

The girls turned at the sound of their names. They dropped their trunks and embraced Alice and Emmeline.

"We just saw you the other day," Emmeline laughed, brushing off Lily's hug.

"Oh shut it," Lily giggled, forcing Emmeline into an embrace. "With Voldemort around, you can't hug anyone enough. Who knows when it will be the last time?"

"Wow, Evans, way to put a damper on your greeting."

Lily froze mid-hug with Emmeline at the voice.

"I know, right?" Emmeline teased. "Geroff, Lily, you're squeezing too hard—"

Lily immediately released her friend, realizing in her surprise she had grasped her friend too hard, and turned around to address Potter.

"Just being honest," she responded, nervously running her hand through her hair. "All right, Potter?"

"Fine, and yourself?"


They stood there awkwardly for a moment, until Mary, Alice, and Emmeline's giggles broke the silence.

"Well, we're going to find a compartment," Alice said quickly, dragging Emmeline and Mary off. Lily was thankful; she could tell they'd been on the verge of saying something to make her blush even more than she currently was.

"So, Potter, what's my surprise?" Lily asked, clearing her throat.

"Ah," James said with a grin, sticking out his chest. Lily looked down and saw a Head Boy badged pinned there.

"You?" Lily asked in disbelief. "But you weren't even a prefect!"

James shrugged his shoulders, grinning.

"He actually confunded Dumbledore," Sirius said, joining them. "Not a surprise to see one on you, though, Evans."

"No, although apparently it's pretty easy to achieve nowadays," Lily said, stepping back towards her trunk. How did Potter of all people get the Head Boy spot? She had worked hard for years, doing prefect duties fifth and sixth years with Remus.

James and Sirius exchanged an uneasy glance. Lily took this opportunity of the lull in the conversation to grab her trunk.

"Well, I'd better board...I'll see you at the front of the train in a few minutes, I guess," she added reluctantly to James.

She hurried away before they could respond.

"So guess what Potter's surprise was?" Lily raged, putting her trunk away with more force than necessary.

"Well it clearly wasn't a good one since he's been demoted to a last-name basis," Mary said playfully. Lily ignored her.

"He's Head Boy!"

Her friends turned and stared at her.

"Is Dumbledore mad?" Emmeline asked. "Giving Potter that much power? He goes around cursing people when there are prefects and Head Boys and Girls to stop him; what happens when he is the head boy?"

"Exactly!" Lily said, satisfied that her friends agreed with her.

"Though, I haven't heard of him hexing anyone in a while," Alice noted. "Dumbledore probably noticed that."

"But Remus' never hexed anyone!" Lily argued. "Just because Potter's evolved to act like how a decent human being should doesn't mean he should be rewarded—"

"But Remus never stopped anyone from hexing people," Alice shot back. "You think James would let people walk all over him?"

Lily was quiet, racking her brain for another argument. When she couldn't come up with one, she shrugged her shoulders.

"I think he'll do better than you think," Alice said wisely.

"You should just give him a congratulatory snog and move on with your life," Mary teased. "Shouldn't you be getting to the front of the train soon?"

Lily glanced at her watch. "Yeah, I should."

"I'll go with you," Mary said quickly, standing up.

"Why?" asked Emmeline blankly.

"So that Black can catch a glimpse of her smutty Muggle outfit before she has to cover it up with some proper robes," Lily answered, sticking her tongue out at Mary teasingly.

"I just thought my best mate would like some company," Mary said lightly, opening the compartment door for Lily. "After you."

Lily brushed past her with a playful smile. She had to admit, Mary had become a lot more fun since Black had corrupted her.

"You're a git."

"It was quite a laugh."

"Get out of my room."

Mary flopped onto Lily's bed, ostentatiously sprawling out in defiance.

"Shut it...you're going to miss us tonight."

Lily sighed.

"I will, but you're only down the hall."

"You don't get to hear Alice's snores every night."

"I will miss hearing Emmeline talk in her sleep," Lily admitted.

"You'll also miss this beautiful face every morning," Mary said, plastering a huge grin on her face.

"I won't miss you charming my hair so that it stands straight out right before I go to my meetings with the prefects, like that little stunt you just pulled on the Hogwarts Express," Lily said sternly.

Mary giggled and flicked her wand so that Lily's long hair stood on end again. "That's what you get for making fun of my "smutty" Muggle outfit."

Lily rolled her eyes but smiled. "And here you had me all last year thinking that you couldn't do silent spells."

"Ah, when properly motivated," Mary said with a wink. She flicked her wand again and Lily's hair repositioned itself on her shoulders properly. "Shall we play some chess in the common room?"

"Sure," Lily said, grabbing her chess set from her trunk. They descended the stairs from the girls side and positioned themselves in a pair of armchairs in the common room. It was mostly empty; people were too full and tired from the feast to stay up late.

After a quarter of an hour, during which Mary's white pieces had slowly demolished Lily's black ones, the portrait hole popped opened and two familiar voices caught their ears.

"—meet him tomorrow night."

"I don't know, Padfoot, now that I'm Head B—"

Potter stopped mid-sentence when he caught sight of Lily and Mary off to the side of the common room.

"Evans, MacDonald," he nodded.

"All right, MacDonald?" Sirius asked, wagging his eyebrows at her.

"Fine," she said evenly, focusing her attention back on her and Lily's game.

"Hey, Lily, come over here for a minute," James said, waving her over to the other side of the room. "Let Sirius here sit in for you."

"I'm in the middle of a game," Lily replied, trying to steady her quickening pulse.

"I want to play," Sirius whined, standing over her.

"When I'm done!" Lily answered, irritated.

"I don't know if I can sit through his stench for an entire game," Mary said.

"Wingardium Leviosa!"

Before Lily could grab her wand, she was hovering in the air at the mercy of Black.

"Put me down!" she demanded, holding her robes so that they couldn't see up them.

"Surely," Black said smoothly, waving his wand so that she hovered over to where James was sitting. He released the spell and she fell onto James' lap.

"Hello," he said, laughing.

"Your mate is a moron," Lily growled, pushing herself up to get revenge.

"Oy, sit here with me for a minute," James pleaded, gently grabbing a hold of her arm. Lily felt herself soften under his touch.

"Oh alright," she said, trying to sound grudging. Her heart began to flutter again once she was seated next to him, so close.

"I didn't get a proper hello," he said with a theatric pout.

"You didn't need a proper hello," Lily pointed out. "I've been writing you all summer."

"Humor me," he said with a wink. He took her hand and kissed it, letting his lips linger. "Hello, Evans. How was your holiday?"

She watched him and held her breath in an attempt to slow down her out-of-control heart. He looked up at her from behind his glasses, still holding her hand, waiting for her response. She kept holding her breath, willing her hand to steady itself so he wouldn't feel her weakness in its shaking.

"Hello, Potter," she said, releasing her breath and forcing herself to sound bold. She turned her hand over in his and grasped it in a firm handshake. "My holiday was quite excellent. My friends and I toured Europe. How was yours?"

Lily was disconcerted when he didn't smile at their little game. He merely looked at her, studying her face. She squirmed under his intense gaze.

"I think I'll head up to bed," he said abruptly, standing up.

Lily suddenly understood why he was acting this way. He had been just as nervous as she had been. If he had shaken her hand and acted so casually towards her, she would be hurt, too. She got up and caught up with him in a few strides, glancing out of the corner of her eye to ensure that Mary and Sirius were still immersed in their game.

"James," she said, catching him by the arm and lowering her voice. "I've missed you."

She grinned at him and put her arms around his neck, pulling him towards her. She really had missed him, she realized, as she felt him smile from under her lips.

"Oy, Prongs, you have your own room now, you know."

They jumped apart at Sirius' voice. James shot his friend a warning glare and turned back to Lily.

"I thought you'd never admit it," he said with his signature grin of confidence, holding Lily's right hand and playing with the tips of her fingers.

Lily smiled back at him. "I just didn't want to add to your big head."

"Evans," he began, pulling her to his chest and kissing the top of her head, "if anyone's good at doing the exact opposite of that, it's you."

She inhaled deeply before reluctantly pulling away from him. He smelled just as intoxicating as always. "Good, someone needs to."

"Black, you CHEATED!"

Lily whipped around at Mary's voice. Her friend was on her feat, hovering over Black, who remained in his armchair, unconcerned.

"I don't know what you're talking about," he said lightly. "You're just a sore loser, MacDonald."

"No, I just won't take your rubbish sitting down!" she said frustratedly.

He grinned up at her cheekily, obviously enjoying getting a rise out of her.

"Bow down to my superior chess skills, Mary."

"It's MacDonald to you," she spat, turning to clean up the chess sets.

"You're so hot when you're saucy," Sirius said, standing up and putting his arm around her waist. "Why don't we go—"

"Get your grimy hands off of me, Black."

Lily decided it was time to intervene, for Black's sake. Mary had a crazed glint in her eye that Lily had never seen before.

"I've got this, Mary," she said, taking up putting away the chess pieces. "You'll never wake up for classes tomorrow if you don't get to bed now."

"Fine," Mary huffed. Without a second glance at Sirius, she marched up the stairs, and Lily faintly heard a door slam.

"Oh MacDonald!" Sirius groaned, falling back into his armchair.

"Keep it in your pants," Lily warned, waving a bishop at him. "I don't want to hear it."

"Evans, since when has your best mate been so—"

"Cheeky?" Lily suggested when he trailed off. "Never you mind, I'd leave her be if you value your life."

"Don't bother," James said, sitting next to his friend. "You can't reason with Padfoot."

Lily rolled her eyes and began placing the chess pieces she had gathered into their proper positions in the box.

"You know, Black, she was the one that stopped me from hexing your head off when you treated her so horribly last year," Lily said conversationally. "You deserve any grief she gives you."

"She sure gives me something. Wouldn't exactly call it grief..."

Lily made a disgusted noise in the back of her throat and ignored him.

The three were silent for a moment, Sirius continuously fidgeting around. He levitated a chess piece from the table and lazily made it zoom around the room.

"So Evans, finally submitted to my best mate's charm?"

Lily ignored him and kept her eyes down on the chess pieces she was organizing, preferring not to respond. Sirius only grinned and continued.

"Took you long enough. Jamsie over here wouldn't leave the house over the summer if he was expecting your letters—"

"Come off it, Sirius," James said, averting his eyes from Lily. For his sake, she tried not to smile.

"Stop being modest, Prongs," Sirius said flippantly. He yawned widely. "This one had girls throwing themselves at him all summer. I don't know what kind of spell you have him under, Evans, but I should thank you. Left more girls for me when he wouldn't have them."

Lily now had to bite her lip to keep from smiling. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw James, bright red, shooting Sirius death glares.

"Anyways," Sirius continued, now flicking his wand so the chess piece he was playing with cartwheeled across the floor, "it's about time. You should've heard him in his sleep. It was always 'Lily' this, 'Lily' that—ARRG!"

Lily looked up at Black's sudden exclamation. James was on his feet and had his wand pointed at Sirius, who was upside down in the air with his tongue glued to his mouth.

"I think it's time for me to get this one to bed," James said, laughing at his best friend. Lily joined him, knowing that Sirius got what he deserved for his big mouth.

She waved goodnight to James as he levitated Sirius up the boys' side of the stairs. After she finished organizing the pieces, she fell back into her chair; she had been tense the entire time that James was in the room. She rested her head on the back of the chair, trying to recall his smell. She wondered if he was in his own dormitory yet, and what he'd say if she snuck in to say (what he would call) a "proper" goodnight?

Lily frowned suddenly, catching herself. She was becoming too comfortable with the idea of Potter. She still didn't know why he fancies her, and if he actually knows who she is. She was becoming too invested before she knew if he would be invested. She pictured Mary's puffy red eyes and recalled her sobs from last year because of Sirius.

"Slow down," she breathed to herself, resolved to be more reserved around James from now on. No more allowing him to pull her aside and trick her into snogging him.