Tales of Princesses and Knights in Metal Armour
When she was little, Lily Luna Potter was determined that she was going to be a princess.
Truthfully, she was already the daughter of 'royalty'. Harry Potter was basically the royalty of the Wizarding World, ever since he'd defeated Voldemort, which meant that Lily Luna was the princess. But she was determined that she was going to be an actual princess.
Most days, while her father was off doing Auror work and her mum was playing James and Albus in Quidditch, they would sit her down in front of their Muggle television with a Disney movie. She'd watch as princesses would all get their happy endings, one by one. And each one would end up with a prince. So, she figured, if she was a princess, then she would have to have a prince.
Most of the time, when her parents weren't off doing whatever, they would give her what she wanted. So, that day, she marched into the kitchen and declared, "I want a prince."
Harry, who'd just walked in the door, and Ginny, who was starting to cook dinner, just stared at her, before Ginny's head spun around to glare at Harry. "I told you she shouldn't watch those Muggle Disney movies. They're giving her the wrong idea."
"All Muggle little girls watch them-" Harry began, but Lily cut him off.
"I'm not getting the wrong idea," she crossed her arms tightly across her chest. "I want to be a princess, like the girls in the Disney movies, and they all have a prince."
"Lily," her mother reprimanded her. "Would you calm down? Teddy's coming over for dinner tonight, and we want you on your best behaviour-"
Lily's brown eyes sparkled. "Wait, Teddy's coming for dinner?"
"Yes," Ginny continued, "and we don't want you making any trouble tonight, d'you hear?"
Nine-year-old Lily grinned, her smile a bit evil. "No, course I'm not gonna make any trouble!"
But that was when it hit her. Teddy had been her best friend since forever, and he was always sweet to her. Not to mention he had the looks of a Disney prince. What was to stop her from asking Teddy to be her prince?
So she waited eagerly, watching Beauty and the Beast on repeat and thinking of how they were a bit like that movie. Lily didn't like reading, as she found it to be utterly boring, but she thought of herself as pretty like Belle and different from everyone else in the Wizarding World. Like Belle, she was strong-willed, determined, and loyal to her family.
In contrast, Teddy (her Beast, her prince) believed himself to be less than he was, tried to scare people off, and was rough on the outside but surprisingly tender on the inside.
He had to be the prince to her princess, didn't he?
When he showed up for dinner, at last, he was quiet, too quiet for her liking. So she ran over to him, plopping into his lap. "Have you ever considered becoming a prince, Teddy?"
He looked up at her, chuckling. "No, I haven't, why?"
"Will you be my prince, like in the Disney movies?" she fluttered her eyelashes.
The older boy sighed audibly. "Lily… I don't think I'm the best person for that role. Trust me when I say you'll find your prince. He'll be perfect for you, a real knight in shining armour."
Eyes shiny, she ran out of the room, certain that she was never going to find her prince.
She liked to pretend that she hadn't eavesdropped on Teddy's conversation with her parents, though, of course, she had. Ear pressed to the door, she listened as Teddy spoke.
"Honestly, Aunt Ginny, Uncle Harry. Your daughter… she's a lovely girl, really. But she's living her life off of the fantasy movies that you let her watch while you all go off and do whatever, and you're as much to blame as she is. The girl needs a hobby."
Offended, Lily bit her lip, hoping that her parents would inform him that he was the crazy one, that Lily was completely normal.
Instead, Ginny's response was, "I see what you mean, Teddy. And what do you suggest is a 'suitable hobby' for little Lily?"
"Cross-country running," Teddy responded, and there was a shuffling of papers. "There's no wizard team, but there's one for Muggles near here. I could take her to let her try it out, if you want? I'm sure she would love it- she's always adored running."
She could almost hear her parents nodding in agreement, much to her dismay.
Because Lily was a princess now, despite her previous love for running, and princesses didn't run. They had other people run for them. No way did she want to join this running club of Teddy's, especially across the whole country!
Except she kind of did.
She soon discovered that cross-country was one of the few things that she was good at, which pleased her. Maybe she could be the princess of running. There was one of those, wasn't there? There had to be.
On one of her first two days, she introduced herself to a small, timid boy. "I'm Lily Potter."
"Potter?" the boy asked, blue eyes wide. "Any relation to, um, Harry Potter?"
"He's my daddy," Lily told him proudly. "You're a wizard, then?" she threw the word around carelessly, as if she didn't understand the implications of the word.
Albert glanced around cautiously before he nodded. "Albert Rosier."
"Albert?" she snorted, tossing her hair. "What sort of name is that?"
But it was too late for discussion then, as their coach was yelling for them to run another lap. Albert threw her an apologetic glance before he took off running. She caught up with him quickly enough, and smirked at him as she kept on running.
However, despite the fact that he was a boy, Lily was sure that Albert Rosier was not her prince. First, because he was cute, but he looked nothing like the dark-haired princes of her fantasies, and second, because he was too shy to ever save her from anything.
But he was pretty cute, she had to admit, despite the fact that she couldn't ever consider him as a prince.
Her whole world fell apart in the station that summer or at least the 'princess' world that she'd imagined. She'd thought that she would be a princess, and Teddy her prince, but all of that fell apart as her brother (the royal fool) came back bearing devastating news.
He started to yell about how Teddy and Victoire were snogging, and Lily almost broke.
She honestly should have seen it coming- Victoire was as pretty as a princess, with her lovely blonde hair and pretty blue eyes. As she sighed and tried to take in the news, she realised that she had been right all along.
Teddy was going to be a prince. He just wasn't going to be Lily's prince.
He'd been right, too- now there was no way that he could be Lily's prince. She was going to have to find another prince, and hopefully Teddy was right- hopefully there was a prince out there for her somewhere.
To avoid crying once again (but this time, not because she wasn't able to go to Hogwarts yet), she hugged her brothers tightly and then turned to bury her face into her mother's leg.
Usually, she was spoiled. Usually, she got everything that she wanted.
Too bad Teddy was now unattainable, which made her want him as her prince all the more.
Once she, her parents, and Teddy (who claimed he was in no mood to go home, despite her parent's teasing), she immediately seated herself in front of the television, watching as princes twirled their gorgeous princesses around the room. Was she not a gorgeous princess? When would her prince come?
Sighing, she tried to ignore the fact that Teddy had sat down across the room from her. "What do you want?"
"Lily," he stated in that matter-of-fact way of his, "You knew I wasn't going to be your prince."
"I'm not a baby," she buried her face in a pillow. "You don't have to treat me like a baby! I know you're not gonna be my prince now. You have got Victoire and that's all ya need."
"That's not all I need," he protested, but it was too late. She switched off the television and stormed up to her room, tucking herself into her pink (princess-like) bed and falling asleep. Visions of princesses swirled in her head, of balls and princes and happily-ever-afters. She wondered if she would have to wait until she was like, sixteen to get her happily-ever-after.
It seemed too far away for her to even consider.
She confided in Albert, because there was no one else and, in her nine-year old head, she felt as if she was going to explode.
"Albert," she said, kicking her feet back and forth, "d'you believe in happily ever afters?"
He looked up at her, blue eyes shiny. "No."
"How come?" Lily asked, suddenly intrigued. "In all of the Muggle movies, the princesses get married to their princes and they live happily-ever-after."
"Those are movies, Lils," he swung his feet back and forth, staring at the ground. It was obvious that he was holding something in. But finally, he just spoke. "My mummy… she died. A couple of years ago. My daddy was never the same afterward."
Lily felt a wave of guilt flow over her, despite the fact that she hardly ever felt guilt for anything she did. She had two living, healthy parents, and Albert only had his father, whom she'd noted was terrified that he would turn out like his Death Eater uncle. But with a sigh, she decided to forget about it. "But they were in love before that, weren't they?"
He just shrugged. "I don't really remember."
Deciding not to press her point further, she grinned over at him. "Well, my daddy got his happily ever after, and my mummy is like a princess. I want to be like my mummy, Albert. I want to be a princess."
A hint of an amused twinkle in his eyes, Albert looked up at her. "Good luck with that, Lily." Coming from anyone else's mouth, it might have been sarcastic, but from him, it was completely sincere. "I think you're one of the closest things to a princess I've ever seen."
"I'm not a thing," Lily pouted, but she reveled in the compliment nonetheless. "Now, c'mon. If we don't run, they'll notice that we're being bad and make us run even more!"
She took off running, kicking up dust behind her and literally leaving him in the dust for the first of many times.
It was just before her first year, and she was nervous about what house she was going to be sorted into. She turned to Albert for advice, because they were both going into first year. With a frown, she asked him, "What house do you hope to be in?"
"Rosiers are always Slytherins," he informed her, staring at the ground with burning cheeks. "If I'm not a Slytherin… I'll be disowned or something scary like that."
Not bothering to ask what disowned meant, she told him, "Well, Potters are usually Gryffindors, but look at my brother Albus, he's a Hufflepuff. Actually," she smirked, "I don't think that I want to be a Gryffindor. Gryffindors are boring, like my brother James."
"Way to stereotype," he laughed. "Gryffindors aren't so bad."
"You like everyone," Lily wrinkled up her nose in distaste. "I don't see how you do it, Albert! Some people get on my nerves."
"Everyone gets on your nerves," he corrected her with a quiet chuckle.
"True," she barreled on. "But guess what, Albert! I'm going to the British championships for running next year. They said that I'm too young now, but I'll be able to next year, when I'm enrolled in an official school and all."
"What about the Muggle school you were going to?" Albert looked up at her curiously.
"I was expelled for blowing up this guy I got mad at," Lily shrugged with a laugh. "Accidental magic and all. They couldn't be sure it was me, but Muggles are idiots, apparently, because they said that I couldn't be trusted-"
"You can't," he pointed out. "I think they're rather smart, actually."
Glaring at him, she replied, "That's not the point. They had no proof that I had even done anything, so how could they expel me? Anyway, so, once I'm in an official school, I'll be allowed to go to the British children's championships and all." Her face lit up, and she could feel the excitement emanating from her.
"That's great though, Lils," he told her with a smile. "Not that you got expelled, but that you get to go to the championships…" A blush coloured his cheeks. "Are you ready for Hogwarts?"
"I hope so," she laughed, "but my brothers keep telling me that I'll be disowned if I'm put into Slytherin. It makes me want to be in Slytherin."
"Why?" he wondered aloud.
"Cause they're telling me not to," Lily said with a grin. "And I like to do what people tell me not to. Not to mention, at least I would be known for something, even if it's being the Slytherin Potter."
He stared down at the ground. "Are there no other Weasleys in Slytherin?"
"Oh, there are," she smirked. "My cousin, Dominique. She's my favourite cousin, though. I can't tolerate most of the other ones."
"You can't tolerate your cousins?" Albert just raised an eyebrow.
"They're a bunch of Gryffindor supremacists," Lily huffed, as if this was some sort of personal insult. "Excluding Dominique, Lucy, and Hugo, of course. They're the only cousins that I tolerate."
"Was Victoire not a Hufflepuff?" Albert questioned.
"Right, but she's Victoire and she annoys me no matter what she does," Lily retorted. But inside, she was thinking that Victoire was just an annoying princess who stole her prince. Victoire was spoiled and all, unlike Lily, of course.
Albert just laughed and as the wind blew back his blonde curls, she couldn't help but think that Albert Rosier was sort of handsome, even if he could never be her prince.
Because he just wasn't the prince type, nor was he her type… right?
September came too quickly for Lily's liking. She was reminded of how, even at school, she would have to keep up her running if she was going to be dedicated- not quite as dedicated as Rose, but dedicated nonetheless. But, unlike Rose, her coach reminded her that she shouldn't overexert herself. She should do what her body could handle and no more.
At the station, she made it a point to ignore Victoire and Teddy, who were snogging once again. Victoire wasn't even going to school that year, but she'd come to see off Dominique and Louis. All she felt as she saw them snogging was the wound opening up once again. It was as if they'd done it on purpose, to rub salt into the wound- and it hurt, it hurt so badly she couldn't even breathe.
Dominique was the first to notice, of course. "You all right, Lily?"
"Yeah," Lily managed to mutter, frowning. "Yeah, I'm… I'm fine. Your sister just annoys me, is all."
"Good," Dominique smirked, "because I'm no good at cheering up people, especially future Slytherins. And don't worry, she annoys me too. It's just typical perfect-Victoire behaviour."
"Hold up," Lily held up a pale, freckled hand. "What do you mean when you say future Slytherin? You don't think that I'm going to be in Slytherin… wait, do you?"
"Course I do," Dominique rolled her eyes. "Lily, there's a reason that you're my favourite cousin, you know. Just you wait." Her eyes searched the room before they fell on Scorpius Malfoy. "Hey, there's Malfoy. Excuse me for a bit. I've got a couple of things to say to him." Her blue eyes twinkled as she walked off.
Not allowing herself to consider Dominique's words, Lily grabbed on to Lucy and Hugo, hissing, "There's Albert. Shall we go off and find a compartment?"
"I told Lorcan I'd go with him," Lucy smiled apologetically.
"Oh, whatever," Lily slid her fingers through her cousin's, dragging him off despite her protests. Once she let go, she offered Albert a smile. "Hey, Albert."
"Hey, Lils," he smiled bashfully. "Is this your… your boy…"
She interrupted him before he could even think about finishing his sentence. "My boyfriend? No. This is my cousin, Hugo Weasley."
"Oh," Albert's face flushed with embarrassment. "Sorry about that. I'm Albert Rosier."
"Nice to meet you," Hugo grinned at him. "Can we go get a compartment, then-"
He was cut off by a loud shriek that pierced through the air. In a flash, they were joined by a streak of blonde hair and a flash of grey eyes. It was what looked to Lily like a female Malfoy, though she'd never heard of her before- Rose had never mentioned that Scorpius had a younger sister. But she was there, standing before her with a smile as she tugged on Hugo's arm. The shrieking Malfoy spoke. "Hugo! Would you fancy finding a compartment?"
Awkwardly, Hugo turned to the Malfoy girl, probably feeling the intensity of Lily's glare- he wouldn't dare ditch them for a Malfoy, would he? But he smiled at the girl. "As long as you don't mind sharing with my cousin Lily and her friend Albert."
"That's fine," the girl's smile flicked over to Lily and Albert. "I'm Gemini Malfoy. Feel free to call me Gemi, I prefer it. Now are we going to find a compartment or what?"
As she walked off and the rest of them trailed behind her, Lily realised that this Gemini girl was definitely a force to be reckoned with.
That meant she'd have to compete with her, because Lily Luna Potter wanted to be the force of nature.
The Sorting was a major event that year. What with a Potter, two Weasleys (one the son of Ron-and-Hermione), a Malfoy, and more coming through, everyone was excited to see where they would end up. Lily was nervous, but she found it best not to show it- her sorting, when she asked the Hat to put her in Slytherin, would probably be one of the most shocking of the night.
Most of the people that were sorted first Lily didn't know or care about. But then Gemini Malfoy stepped up, wearing a smile fit for a royal wedding instead of a simple Sorting. Placing the hat upon her head, the girl simply smirked, as if she expected something to happen.
And boy, did something happen.
The Hat that was resting on her pristine curls bellowed, "Gryffindor!"
The whole room seemed to go into silence before chaos erupted. With a smirk, Gemini simply stepped down from the stool, not really caring that the whole room had erupted like a volcano. She was like ice- calm, cool, and collected, though, unlike ice, she didn't melt under the heat.
(Which was ironic, considering she'd just been sorted into the house of fire.)
Lily felt jealousy burn through her veins. It was stupid, really, to think that she would be the one to cause an uproar- she hadn't considered, though, that Gemini would be anything but Slytherin. How could she compete with a Malfoy Gryffindor? A Potter Slytherin, she supposed.
She was the next one out of her group of friends to walk up to the intimidating stool. Slipping the hat onto her stick-straight hair, she waited hesitantly.
A Potter? The hat declared brightly. No doubt you want into Gryffindor like the rest.
I don't, she replied angrily. Gryffindors are boring. Put me into Slytherin. I have no desire to be 'like the rest.'
Ambition is prominent, the hat replied, clearly taunting her by making the decision seem agonizing. You've got everything necessary. Yes, yes, I think you'd make a good Slytherin. Though, like Gemini, you'd also do well in Gryffindor… ah, well. We must all make sacrifices for the greater good, yes?
Finally, what she'd been waiting for happened. The hat boomed, "SLYTHERIN!" and she climbed down from the stool.
The whole room went in hysterics. From all tables, she could hear protests of things like, "A Malfoy in Gryffindor, a Potter in Slytherin- what next, Voldemort coming back to life and declaring that he wants to team up with Dumbledore to make a musical?"
Lily had to laugh at that one as she settled down beside some random Slytherin boy. As she sat, he gave her an appraising look. "You know, for a Slytherin, you're not bad looking."
"Back off," she replied brusquely, turning back to the Sorting. "Conceited idiot is not my type."
She watched as Albert was Sorted into Slytherin, and he took his seat beside her, beaming. She had to wonder how they were sorted into the same House. After that, Lucy was made a Ravenclaw (to no one's surprise), and Hugo was a Hufflepuff. With a start, she realised that within the five of them- Lily, Lucy, Hugo, Albert, and Gemini- they encompassed all four houses.
It was quite the accomplishment, really.
First year went pretty well for Lily. As time went by, she built up what they liked to call the Interhouse Fivesome- Lily, Albert, Gemini, Hugo, and most of the time, Lucy. They were basically the supernovas of their year- blazing and burning and outshining everyone, which was basically Lily's goal. She wanted to outshine everyone else, and most of the time, she did.
As she'd promised, she ran during her free time, most of the time with Albert, despite the fact that he was much slower than her. For whatever reason, she adored spending time with him. He was the opposite of her fiery meanness- he was always sweet and ambitious, sort of encouraging in that weird way of his. He just made her happier, no matter what her circumstances were.
That year was lovely. That year, she almost forgot about her troubles.
But second year, it all just started up again. It started with the rumours that were swirling around the school about Albert- well, not rumours as much as teasing and bullying.
They would say that he was ugly and he was a doormat. They'd tell him that nobody loved him and he'd be better off if someone left him in a dump. She saw the pure hurt colouring his lovely face, and she felt for him.
Of course, she told them off- she wouldn't be Lily if she didn't stand up for her friends. But they just laughed at her because she was the Slytherin Potter and honestly, who would listen to her?
She punched one of them in the face and got 10 points off from Slytherin.
Life just seemed to spiral downhill from there. Of course, she still had her amazing friends, but the bullying and prejudice still ran strong through the veins of Hogwarts students. It hurt her, how much they disliked Albert, especially because he was the son of a Death Eater- but really, weren't they doing the same thing that his uncle was doing? Harming people because of who their relatives were?
She was popular, sure. Guys asked her out, she had a good circle of friends, and most people liked her (minus the idiots that she'd told off, broken up with, or punched in the face). But she didn't want it if people were going to treat her true friends this way.
Third year just made everything immensely more complicated.
In third year, they got a new professor. His name? Professor Ted Lupin, or, as most affectionately called him, Professor Lupin the Second. He taught the same class that his father had, Defence Against the Dark Arts, and he was just as popular with the ladies as before.
Fresh off his breakup with Victoire Weasley, Teddy Lupin was the newest professor and according to most, the hottest.
But according to Lily, he was the biggest idiot in the entire school, and she didn't want to talk to him ever again. Of course, she was taking Defence Against the Dark Arts, so there was no way out of it.
Her Defence Against the Dark Arts classes were spent either daydreaming with her head pressed to the table or goofing off, passing notes or doing anything she could to get in trouble. And when he would call her down in an attempt to show that he was the authority in this situation, she would just glare at him out of wide brown eyes. She was showing him that she had no respect for him- he'd ruined that a while ago, even if he and Victoire were broken up now and all.
He wasn't happy about that, that much was evident, but there wasn't really anything he could do about it. If Lily Potter was angry, then she was angry, and no small apology would do away with that.
Albert tried to make her stop. He told her that her life would be loads better if she forgave Teddy. But with an angry glare, she informed him of how he'd crushed her dreams and ruined her life, neither of which were really true in the least, but she didn't actually care.
She tried to convince herself that she wasn't in love with him. Third years couldn't feel love, right? But she got this sick sense of satisfaction from making him angry and she found him attractive. Every time he was angry, she felt a tingle that went from her head to her toes.
That wasn't love, though. That was just Lily Luna's sick, twisted idea of love.
It took her a while to get over him completely, until fourth year, in fact, and once she was over him (at least she thought she was), he called her into his office for a 'meeting' that she really didn't want to go to. But Lucy reminded her that if she didn't go to this meeting, she would be in all kinds of trouble.
So she went. As she walked in, she noticed that he didn't exactly look happy with her- not that she was happy with him, either. Raising an eyebrow, she asked, "What do you want?"
"I'm your Professor," he informed her. "You will treat me with respect, and that means no rude statements like what you just said."
"What did I just say?" she asked innocently. "Look, Lupin, you lost all ounces of respect with me a couple of years ago when you ditched our friendship for your lovely Victoire. So if you wanted respect, you should have thought about that before you took on a job teaching me."
"You're so Slytherin now," he shook his head, looking down at his desk. "I'm sorry, Lily, I never meant to…"
"Never meant to what? Make me hate you?" she barked out a laugh. "It's far too late for that one."
He stared at her, sort of longingly, before he sighed. "Lily, whether you like it or not, I'm your professor now, and the rules of Hogwarts call for respect-"
"The rules of Hogwarts?" she barked a laugh, as if she found their predicament funny. "I don't know what you're talking about, Lupin. I don't listen to any rules, especially ones set by the stuffy professors at Hogwarts. So I owe no one respect."
He eyed her, his constantly changing eyes now some dark shade of black. "Lily Luna, you're a little rebel and complete Slytherin now, aren't you?" Then, without warning or anything of the like, he leaned in and pressed his lips to hers.
She'd been waiting for this. For years, she'd wanted this- wanting to feel him, wanting to feel like he was hers. But whatever she had expected, she hadn't expected this- to be called into his office for a scolding and instead end up kissing him. It felt so wrong, and not in the good way, the way that she adored- but in the way that meant that her morals were kicking in, for once. She was stealing away someone else's prince, and if there was one thing that Lily Luna Potter did not want, it was someone else's leftovers. But she couldn't deny it felt good, to finally get the guy that she had wanted since she was a child. He felt good, at least.
Pulling away, she just stared at him, biting down on her lip. His eyes searched her before he slowly shook his head, staring at her. "I can't do this, Lily. I shouldn't have kissed you. You're a student and I'm a teacher and I'm just so, so sorry, Lily."
Her eyelids closed and she just nodded before turning and tearing off as fast as she could.
She didn't look back.
For a few days, she was antisocial. She closed herself off in her dorm room and didn't speak to anyone. But Albert seemed to understand- he'd leave her meals in front of the door to her room so that she didn't have to face anyone in the Great Hall. It made her grateful that she had such a good friend as he was, because Gemini wasn't being quite as understanding.
Despite Albert's attempts to reassure the blonde that Lily would be fine in a bit, Gemini made a point to go into Lily's room as much as possible and just sit there, waiting for her to speak. Lily resisted the urge to blow up at her and instead glared at her through mascara-stained eyes.
"Heartbreak," Gemini deduced, standing up and brushing off her robes, covered with the dust that Lily had let lie around. "There's no other possible answer."
So she went off, determined that she was right, and Lily knew that she was.
Albert came up a bit later, after Gemini was long gone. Wrapping a careful arm around her shoulders, he questioned, "Heartbreak… something happened with Teddy?"
Despite the fact that Lily had promised herself that she wouldn't cry over this in front of people, as she nodded to answer his question, tears started to fall down his cheeks. Her head fell onto his shoulder and her tears began to soak his robe. He just rubbed her hair.
"It's going to be okay, Lily," he told her. "Teddy's just an idiot. Soon he'll be back with Victoire and this whole mess will be over."
She knew that it was true, that the mess would be over soon, and Teddy and Victoire would be back together again. They would be the perfect couple and everything would be just perfect again. Yet, somehow, that picture made her sad. It couldn't be that she was in love with him- it couldn't be. She thought that it just had to be because she hadn't found her prince yet.
Suddenly, she realised that she was experiencing her first real heartbreak.
It was summer just a few weeks after, and Lily Luna still had not healed completely.
Much to her mother's disappointment, she wasn't in the mood to do much of anything except stay at home and mope. So, Ginny decided to drag her daughter out to go shopping.
Lily wasn't much good at the mall, either. While her mother pored over shirts, shorts, and everything in between, her daughter just moped at the back, her eyes focusing on one thing before boredly turning to the next thing. When they walked into yet another clothing shop, her mother exclaimed in glee. Deadly, Lily picked up her head to see what her mum was exclaiming over.
Albert Rosier was standing there, half of a smile on his face that dropped once he saw the dead expression on Lily's. Her mum ran over to him, smiling. "You're Lily's friend from cross-country, aren't you? I'm her mum, Ginny- I've heard so much about you. It's really a pleasure to meet you."
"It's Albert," Albert smiled uncomfortably, looking from Ginny to Lily. "Pleasure to meet you too, and yes, I know Lily through cross-country."
"How are you doing, then?" Ginny asked with a grin. "Have you been running over break? Because Lily refuses to run- in fact, Lily has been refusing to do anything, it's quite depressing, really-"
"Mum," Lily protested, slapping her mum's hand off of her shoulder. Sighing, she looked at Albert with a forlorn look in her eyes.
"It's okay, I understand," Albert smiled, patting her on the back before he walked off, leaving her mother with, "My uncle's bugging me to go- he's outside, so I'd better go now. I'll see the two of you later, yes? Lily and I will have to go plan something soon."
As Lily turned around to watch him leave, she realised that his uncle was in Azkaban, and therefore couldn't have called him.
She knew that there was a reason that she liked that kid.
The summer didn't get much better. Most of her time was spent avoiding Teddy and her mother, basically hiding in the depths of her room, which felt like a dungeon most of the time. Her streak of being antisocial ended when she got an owl from Albert.
Look, I know that you love Teddy and all, but he's a teacher and you're a student. As hard as it might be, you need to forget about him. He's not worth your time, anyway.
PS. I miss you.
She didn't know how to reply, so she just shoved the letter in her drawer and tried to forget about the letter and Teddy. In her mind, she just couldn't stop thinking about her prince and wondering when he would show up, saving her from her misery.
Her summer continued like that, with Lily hiding from both her mother and Teddy. She wasn't in the mood to deal with either of them, with Ginny's constant begging her to be normal and do something fun, or Teddy's constant apologies.
Too bad she couldn't hide forever.
The school year kicked off with a bang. As James and Louis had graduated the year before, nobody expected anyone to do anything. But Hugo seemed determined to carry on their traditions, as he and Lysander Scamander set off a firework display in the midst of the Great Hall. Lily started to feel guilty that she hadn't been able to help with their prank- she'd always adored pranking people. But since she'd been sulking for the last few months, she found it fit that she wasn't involved in their plans anymore.
Since she'd been stalking, she hadn't talked to any of her Fearsome Five other than Albert in a while. It felt like she was finally starting to return to her previous state, though, so she felt that she'd probably fall back in with them.
Gemini didn't seem fully convinced, though, judging by the curious stares that she sent Lily every time that Lily would even smile. Hugo still seemed a bit bitter. Lucy would talk to her on occasion, though of course, Lucy was notably closer to Lorcan than to Lily. The only person who accepted her back with open arms was Albert, and really, that was what she'd expected.
It started to get to her, though- the way most of her friends weren't on good terms with her, the way that Teddy never met her glare in the classroom, the way that rumours were spreading about her like seeds in a field.
So one day, she just fell apart. In the corridor, she placed her head on her knees and burst into tears.
It might have been a weird thing to do, but Lily didn't really care. She was sick of being treated like she was an idiot for actually feeling pain.
Then, the trashcan next to her rattled.
Startled, she jumped to her feet. Slowly, she took a step closer.
Then the trashcan rattled again and she jumped back like a startled predator. All she could do from her lengthened distance was peer curiously at the trashcan.
Before her wide eyes, the trashcan began to reshape. Arms stretched out of the sides, and legs out of the bottom, until the trashcan finally took the shape of Albert Rosier. Gasping, she fell backwards onto the ground, her sorrow forgotten.
"Hey, Lily," Albert said nonchalantly, as if nothing had happened.
"Albert!" she shrieked, seeming terrified for once. "You were just a trashcan! How are you… what the heck is going on now? I demand you tell me before… before…"
Albert's face flushed. "I don't even know, Lily. I've been able to turn into a trashcan for a while now. I… I think it's a product of my low self-esteem and the fact that I might be worth something but I'm considered worthless by most."
"That's deep," Lily's voice took on a tone of sarcasm. "You might have told me before."
"You might have called me insane," he retorted with a lift of his eyebrow. "It's not every day that you meet people who can turn into trashcans."
She fell backward, staggered a bit. He caught her in his arms before he let her go. With a frown on her face that seemed to be transfixed there ever since the Teddy fiasco, she muttered weakly, "You're not normal, Albert Rosier."
"You're not normal either, Lily Potter," he reminded her, stepping back. "You're a Potter in Slytherin- how normal is that?"
"I see," she called as he turned and walked away, leaving her there, utterly confused.
Slowly, her life began to improve.
She started sitting with the Fearsome Five again at meals, much to her delight. She picked up running, once again, and her times began to improve. She started to rebuild her life from the ashes that Teddy Lupin had reduced it to.
So when he asked to see her in his office again, Gemini and Albert had to literally drag her there to get her to go. She didn't want to speak to him ever again. Even though Defence Against the Dark Arts was her favourite subject, she had considered dropping it, as not to see Teddy.
Which meant that as she sat in his office, sipping tea, she wasn't happy in the least. He didn't seem to want to talk about whatever he'd called her there for either, much to her annoyance.
At last, she erupted. "Why did you call me here?"
"I'm sorry," he blurted, letting the words hang in the silence between them before he spoke again. "I'm sorry, Lily. I know I probably messed up pretty badly and I'm sorry. I shouldn't have led you on at all. And I mean every word I said back then- you deserve a lovely prince and I know there's one out there for you."
"But?" Lily continued, sensing that there was something additional to say.
"I asked Victoire to marry me," he hesitated before continuing. "Yeah, I'm sorry."
She felt as if she'd been punched in the stomach. Though she'd seen it coming, of course, it was still a shocker to hear it spoken aloud.
Standing up abruptly (and knocking over a jar of ink in the process, not that she cared), she hissed, "What makes you think that I care?"
His eyes widened, and the words that he probably wanted to say caught on his tongue as he stared at her, fiery as ever. As she backed up, she hissed, "I hate you, Teddy Lupin."
With that being said, she ran out the door.
She hated him. Now more than ever, it was true. All he'd done was ruin her life, and all she'd done was fall in love with him. But as she sat in front of the fire, tossing in every memory that she had left of Teddy, tears still ran down her face.
She was joined by familiar warmth and an arm around her shoulders. "What are you doing, Lily? Warming up the common room? We could use some warmth."
"Albert," she leaned into his arm, soaking up the comfort. "I hate Teddy. I'm burning everything that reminds me of him."
"I thought you loved him," Albert replied, and his voice was so soft and comforting in comparison to Teddy's rough voice that it nearly startled her.
"Not anymore," she replied, her voice determined in contrast.
Something like relief dotted Albert's features, though he worked quickly to cover it up. "That's great. I'm glad you're over him."
"Why?" Lily started to ask suspiciously, but she was cut off by his lips crashing down onto hers.
His kiss was just as gentle as his personality, and she could almost feel him smiling against her lips. It was the sweetest kiss she'd ever received, and she could tell it was because he actually loved her, not because he felt guilty or whatever.
As he pulled away, he whispered against her lips, "I love you. I always have."
And then, he stood up and exited the room, probably terrified of what she would say. Slytherins were never known for their courage.
It took next to no time or consideration.
Despite the fact that, growing up, she'd counted him out as her prince, she was able to see clearly now- far too clearly for her own good. There was a reason that she'd always found trashcans fascinating as a child. Her prince was a knight in metal armour, complete with an aluminum lid.
And as time went on, she decided that she would probably end up falling in love with him, too.
Because she was fire and he was metal and it would take a lot to burn metal.
She'd always been able to weld him to her will, but that was only because she was Lily and she was stubborn.
Sometimes, he was the only person that could cheer her up. Other times, he was the only person that brought light into her day.
What attracted her most of all was that instead of bringing her down, he lifted her up, and she adored him for that.
At her sixteenth birthday, she kissed him, in front of Gemini, Lucy, Hugo, and everyone else.
Once she pulled away, he breathed, "What was that for?"
"I love you too, you silly trashcan," she whispered before leaning back down and pressing her lips to his.
She stole the spotlight for just a few moments before Gemini stole it back by kissing Hugo.
Laughing, she entwined her fingers with Albert, grateful that she'd finally found her prince. And her wishes were only confirmed as he leaned over to whisper in her ear, "I love you, Princess Lily."
A/N: BUT WHY IS ALBERT SO LOVELY ARGH.
Okayy. Anyway, this took forevers to write, so lovely reviews would be appreciated? (:
As I've stated before, I adore LilyTrashcan. I'm not a big Lily-fan, but I think that she and Albert are just perfect and I freaking adore Albert. Also, yeahh. TeddyLily's a big pleasure of mine- though my OTP is TeddyVictoire.
THIS IS FOR THE MOST AWESOMESAUCE PEOPLE IN THE WORLD, THE NEXTGEN FANATICS. SERIOUSLY. I LOVE YOU GUYS TO DEATH AND BACK. LIKE, YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW.
Cause you deal with me even when I think up stuff like LilyTrashcan.