When Lily envisioned her wedding as a young girl, she imagined it to be a perfect and grand affair in the summertime. There would be bouquets of roses, a grand gown fit for a princess, and purple, satin bows. Her husband would be someone whom she fell in love with at first sight or perhaps a childhood sweetheart. Her mother often smiled and told her that she hoped her husband would be wealthy too so he could foot the bill for such a lavish wedding. Lily knew her plans were rather decadent, but when little girls dreamed of their wedding day, they tended to dream extravagantly.
In reality, Lily had a small, winter wedding. Her gown was simple and her decorations simpler yet. The man she pledged her heart to was none other than James Potter. It wasn't love at first sight at all, but instead years of unfriendly exchanges until one day when Lily finally looked past his façade and saw James for the first time. He was a man who was funny, steadfast, and loyal. More importantly, he loved with everything he had to give, not always wisely but fiercely. He was the prince charming that her mother always read of, though in the most unlikely of men. And, oh how she loved him.
He twirled her around the dance floor, making an utter mess of the waltz that they had spent hours trying to learn. It was the one thing that she clung to from all those wedding dreams of her girlhood—waltzing on her wedding day. James paled at the very idea but saw it through, a testament to his love for her.
The dance started off lovely, even if Sirius was laughing at James from the edge of the dance floor. But James had been a bit tipsy and had two left feet besides, so it wasn't long before he was caught in the skirts of her dress. Sirius' laughter turned into nothing short of howls, though he was by no means the only one who was amused. She found her father chuckling and shaking his head, Peter doubled over next to Sirius, and Professor McGonagall's lips pulled into an amused smirk. Soon James started laughing along with everyone else, and Lily supposed that it was all a bit funny.
The thing about life with James Potter was that nothing ever went as expected. She would have been in her rights to be upset with him for sending their first dance as husband and wife into shambles, but Lily thought she loved him just a bit more for it. James and Lily didn't have a fairy tale romance, but it was real and true and there was never a dull moment.
"I'm sorry," he said, between laughs.
She rolled her eyes. "You're worthless, James Potter."
He dipped her at the next sway, kissing her full on the mouth. She heard the whistles coming from the sidelines, along with an "Atta boy, Prongs" from Pete and a "Show her who's boss" from Sirius. They could have shouted half a dozen other things, and Lily would have never known because her thoughts were focused entirely on James in that moment and his warm, full lips against hers.
When he broke their kiss, he smiled the smile of a man who was completely happy. She smiled back and felt tears pooling in her eyes. As they swayed close together, the song ended and there was an eruption of applause.
A far more upbeat song followed, and wedding guests shuffled onto the dance floor to enjoy themselves. Remus, Sirius, and Peter joined James and Lily, Pete singing along with the music and Sirius punching James lightly on the shoulder.
"You look like you could use a drink, mate," Sirius said.
"Definitely." He kissed Lily on the cheek. "Back in a minute, love."
"Don't you dare drink too much more, Sirius. You still have your speech to do, and I'd much rather my mother not find out that I had no business wearing white on my wedding day."
He smirked. "How is it, Prongs, that you're the one who is married, and yet I've got a ball and chain now too?"
"I always figured that marrying James was as good as marrying the lot of you," she said.
"Don't worry," Sirius said, kissing her other cheek, "you're the sexiest ball and chain I know."
James promptly had Sirius in a head lock, mussing up Sirius' perfect hair. They both headed off towards the bar, Peter not following far behind them. Lily turned to Remus, who had stood next to her as her chief bridesmaid despite all the strange looks from guests and James, Sirius, and Peter's incessant teasing.
"Care for a waltz?" Remus asked.
"You can't waltz to this."
"You can try."
He took her hand, and with perfect form, led her through a delightful waltz. That was the beauty about the whole thing—marrying James really was like marrying the four of them at once. But, Lily thought, there were no four men she would rather walk through life with than James, Sirius, Remus, and Peter.