Title: Drink With Me
Characters: Lily and Petunia Evans, James Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew.
Notes: This is a songfic of Drink With Me from Les Mis about the short life of Lily Evans... and the even shorter life of Lily Potter. This is AU, dammit, because I adore James too much to do this to him. The first half of the story is canon (it was originally all meant to be, but it was orginially meant to be a drabble of the first few lines or so. Huh) but the second half is a view on Marge Dursley's comment that James Potter was a drunk. But, please, don't let that ruin the story for you. Enjoy.
A wife by nineteen; a mother by twenty; a corpse by twenty-one. That was the short life of Lily Potter.
Nineteen was too young to marry, they told her. Too young to love, too young to understand. But she understood perfectly fine, thank you; it was then, or never.
James Potter was her world, her stars and her moons, and her whole bloody universe and she wasn't just going to let him leave her. Or let herself leave him. She didn't want to die alone.
Twenty was too young to be a mother, they told her.
Too young to know of responsibility, of trust and truth and everything a mother needs. But she knew perfectly well, thank you; this baby was hers and hers alone. She didn't own much, nor did she love much, and therefore, she wasn't going to let her baby live without her.
Twenty-one was too young to die, they told her grave.
Too young to love; too young to live. But she lived and she loved as much as her fragile heart could take. She didn't die alone.
Drink with me to days done by...
At the age of eleven, she was still a child, still innocent. Maybe a little sad to see her sister go, but proud. Hearty. Controlled. And above all, brave; at least, that's what the Hat told her.
"Tuney," Lily said, her tone pleading and her hands gesturing. "Tuney, it doesn't have to be like this. We can make it work. Like old times."
"You're a freak, Lily," her sister simply replied, as if it solved everything. She was a child too, still naive and set in her childish ways. "You'll - you'll brainwash me, like you did Mum and Dad. You'll control us all, you little - you little witch."
It was a song that Lily had heard before.
"Goodbye Tuney," the red-haired girl whispered, her voice controlled and proud and hearty. She walked away with her head held high and even managed an encouraging, brave smile at her parents.
At the age of twelve, she was older, wiser, or so she liked to say.
Sing with me the songs we knew...
At the age of thirteen, she was understanding, careful. She was practised in the art of dramatic irony, and stole away in the night in search of protection charms.
"Leave me alone, Potter." They were lyrics she repeated every day, the song she used to know. "I hate you." And she believed it.
Because she was in control, and she wasn't a little girl anymore, and she knew exactly what was right and what was wrong. She was Lily Evans. And even if she spent her nights crying because another Muggleborn died that day, she was brave.
"I don't want to talk, Potter." She did; but she was very good at convincing them, and herself, that she didn't.
At the age of fourteen, she was bitter, maybe even resentful. Everything was falling to pieces. Her family, her friends, her enemies, her whole world, her stars and her moons and her whole bloody universe were starting to crumble.
"I like you, Evans," he said and she would start to fall to pieces. But then she'd smile and everything would be okay.
"No you don't, Potter," she replied scathingly, happy in knowing that everything was as it should've been.
And then he'd have this deer-in-the-headlights look and she ran over his heart, and she'd swear that she hadn't seen him blink back tears.
Here's to pretty girls who went to our heads...
At the age of fifteen, she was no longer a child, and anybody who told her differently would find themselves pinned to the uppermost arch of the Great Hall. But that was only to remind herself that she could still laugh. Maybe.
"I'm in love with you, Lily." He loves you, he'll love you, he loved you!
"Don't be ridiculous, you little insufferable brat."
She hadn't laughed at his declarations of love for a long time. His face would fall and she'd feel more than a little guilty, and he'd take his revenge on poor, hateful Severus Snape and she'd have to hate him again because it was what she did, and she needed normality.
"He loves you, he loves you not, he loves you, he loves you, he loves you not..."
"Oh, but Lily, he loves you!" No he didn't. The flowers never lied; but Lily Evans did, and one petal still remained on her broken lily.
Here's to witty girls who went to our beds...
At the age of sixteen, she was a woman; she was powerful and afraid and vulnerable in a way she never had been before.
"Did you hear, Lily?"
"Did I hear what?" She asked lazily, flicking through her textbook and flicking her hair over her shoulder with graceful, practised ease. "What did Potter do this time?" Lily took the bait.
Her friends giggled, and one stepped forward. "It's more a case of who he did."
And this time, it was her face that fell and her heart that stopped and her breath that caught in her finally- developed chest. "Oh." It was the Ravenclaw girl, the one he had been flirting with. The witty one with the curly brown hair and bright blue eyes and the small, unscathed smile.
She was powerful, and with a flick of her wand her tears were gone and her narrowed, green eyes were blank again. But she was terrified of being this type of vulnerable.
Here's to them and here's to you...
At the age of seventeen, she was in love. Simple.
"I love only you, Lil," he said, and he took her delicate hand in his Quidditch-hardened one. "You should know that by now."
Yes, she'd think to herself once he was gone and she was left alone in the crowded common room. But only until I break your heart and you turn to some pretty, witty girl for comfort.
She wasn't innocent, but she was still just a child, though older, and maybe even wiser. But she was so very afraid of love; still.
Drink with me to days gone by...
At the age of eighteen, all hell broke loose, and that was when the Golden Age of Lily Evans Potter ended.
To the life that used to be...
She wished for a time when she was giggly, and pretty, and even when faced with war, innocent. A time when she thought she was better. A time when Tuney was going to be her maid of honour and there was no way that she was going to marry James bloody Potter, and she'd much faster marry the Giant Squid.
And everybody was dying around her. Suddenly, she was orphaned and there weren't many people around to comfort her anymore.
At the shrine of friendship, never say die...
"To us," he said, raising his glass and gesturing to his three friends and his fiancé. "In hope that we'll never have to say die." And they all drank, deep, because they never knew if it was the last time.
They joked about and pretended that they were still at school. They pretended that Sirius didn't suspect Remus and that Remus didn't suspect Sirius. They pretended that they hadn't started to forget what Peter looked like, and they pretended that James wasn't starting to drown his troubles in the bottom of a glass too big to be called a shot.
And Lily was pretending that she wasn't falling apart at her already loose seams.
Let the wine of friendship never run dry...
At the age of nineteen, she was married.
"James." Lily said, looking at her husband wearily. "James, honey, look at me." She was scared about what she would see if she did, but she had to know. Her inner Gryffindor roared. His eyes were bloodshot and his face was pale and in his hand, he held a half empty bottle of Firewhiskey. "Please..."
"What, Lily?" He snapped, the bottle breaking and the glass cutting into her bare feet. Neither of them noticed. "What do you want from me?"
"I want my..." She was going to say husband, but realised he had been like this the entire time they had been married. She couldn't say fiancé, either, because that was when it started. "I want my boyfriend back."
"Well, go find another, why don't you!" He yelled, standing up to tower above her. "You're perfectly fine at breaking hearts, I seem to remember. Don't see why you should stop just because there's a bloody ring on your finger!"
Here's to you and here's to me...
At the age of twenty, she was a mother.
"You have a son, Prongs." She peered through the door to find Peter talking to James, who ran a hand through his coal black hair. "You have responsibilities. You can't keep running away like this."
"I can bloody well try," James bit back, slamming his coffee cup onto the counter, the noise making Lily jump. "I need something stronger."
"Hide, James," Peter was saying, leaning against the fridge that his best friend was now rummaging through. "Harry needs you. Lily needs you. We need you. We can keep you safe, lock you away. I've already suggested the idea to Dumbledore..."
"Dumbledore?" James scoffed. "Him? What good did he ever do us, eh? What good did he ever do anyone?"
To the life that used to be...
There was a new noise that comes from the kitchen, sounding halfway between a whimper and a scream. It was either Sirius or Remus, because the two were never seen together anymore. "What happened to you, Prongs?" It was Sirius. "If this is you growing up, bloody well grow down."
"'Cause you're so mature, Padfoot," James growled. "Where's Moony, hmm? I haven't seen him lately. Or you. Haven't seen you two in the same room since last summer when you knocked his teeth out and he gave you that scar."
"You know how I feel about that - that traitor."
"Where's your proof?" James raised his voice. "Where's your goddamned proof, Padfoot? You can't come round here, telling me how to live my life when you can't even keep control of yours!"
"We know you're scared, James," Peter said. "We're scared too. You love Harry more than anything; you're great with him... when you're sober."
At the shrine of friendship, never say die...
"I can't face her when I'm sober," James said quietly after an awkward pause. "I'm waiting for when she'll walk out, and I won't be able to face that sober either."
"Prongs, if she walks out, she'll take Harry with her, you know that, right?" Sirius replied, his voice unsure. "And if she does, then she'll have a bloody reason to. And I bet my motorbike that you'll be the one to break her, not the war, not Harry, not us. You and your bloody drink!"
"I need it."
"No you don't," Sirius countered easily. "You need Lily." And what does Lily need, hmm?
Let the wine of friendship never run dry...
"I'm scared, Tuney," Lily said down the telephone. Her hands were shaking and her fingers wrapped around the cord to steady themselves.
"It's your own fault, freak," Petunia said from the other end, but for once, her words hold no malice. "I told you not to marry him. I knew he was bad news. Your lot, they all are."
"Don't say that, Tuney. There're some good people, and James is just under pressure right now... He's coming back, I'm sure of it. It got a bit worse after his mum died, but he's getting better. I have to believe that, Petunia."
"He loves you," Petunia commented, but it wasn't a question. "And you love him." There's a silence.
"He's a good man, Tuney," Lily said, before catching herself. "He was."
"Leave him, Lily," Petunia suddenly begged, her voice pleading like Lily's had once done. "Lily, it doesn't have to be like this. We can make it work. Like old times. He's brainwashed you, Lily. You may be a freak, but you can change. I'll help you change."
"I can't Tuney." The words were out of Lily's mouth before she could control them. "I love him. And maybe he'll learn that."
Here's to you...
"I'm sorry, Lily," he said after two months locked away in their safe house. "Why... why haven't you left me yet? Three years you've put up with me, and..."
"I love only you, James," she told him, her voice shaking. "You should know that by now."
"I'd understand, you know," James said suddenly, looking down at her. She was surprised to find herself swearing that she hadn't seen him blink back tears. "If things get bad again... leave me. Please. Promise me you will, before I do something I'll regret even more."
"I promise, James," and for once in her very short life, she meant it.
At the age of nineteen, she was married. At the age of twenty, she was a mother. At the age of twenty-one, she was widowed.
At the age of twenty-one, she was dead. And that was the short life of Lily Potter.
And here's to me.