Chapter 7

July 31 1991

Lily looked up from her book (that she was reading on the couch) to see an owl come through the window. "Mail's here!" she called, grinning as an almost-identical-but-smaller version of herself came racing down the stairs.

"Mail!" Rose shrieks. "Is it for me? Is it for me?" She is bouncing on her feet, even more eager than a normal child despite it being her 11th birthday.

Lily laughs and throws the owl a treat. "Well.., we have something from Uncle Remus..." she gives the letter to her daughter. "Two letters from Uncle Sirius, one for daddy and one for you..." she gives Rose her letter and puts her husband's back on the table next to her. "And something from Aunty Allie... Don't worry, she has a note here that says that you'll get more presents later..." she hands the box to her daughter before grinning at the last envelope in her hand. "And... Something from Hogwarts!" her daughter squeals as she is handed the letter with emerald green ink.

James is woken by the squealing. His first instinct is to leap out of bed, grab his wand and race downstairs. Pausing, he realises the squeals are of delight not fear and, remembering what day it is, he grins. The tousled, black haired man gets out of bed, ruffling his hair out of habit and shoves his glasses on his face. Stealthily, he creeps downstairs and comes up behind his daughter.

Rose is too busy ripping the letter open to notice her father. Lily is laughing silently and winks at her husband as her daughter begins to read. "Dear Miss Potter..."

James returns his wife's wink and suddenly grabs his daughter around the waist. "What've you got there munchkin?" He asks, beaming at her scream of surprise.

Lily laughs as the smaller red haired girl slapped her dad softly with a "Don't DO that, Daddy!" before returning to her letter. "I'm going to Hogwarts!" she beams at her parents.

He chuckles and sets her back on her feet. "Really?" James mocks surprise. "You /are/?"

Lily grins. "Such a surprise... It's not like you once did Human Transfiguration on your brother... When you were seven..." she laughs and kisses her daughters hair. "Congratulations, hon."

Beaming, her father scoops her up into a tight hug. "Good job little one." Rose grins up at them both, hugging first her Dad and then her Mum tightly.

After hugging her daughter in return, Lily kisses her husband. "Morning, love."

"Good morning my beautiful wife." James sweeps her into his arms and kisses her heatedly. "Ew! Mum. Dad. Honestly!" The voice of their ten-year-old son is ignored, by James at least.

Lily pulls away slowly. "Good morning, eh?" she whispers, smiling.

"A very good morning," he murmurs, kissing her swiftly again. "I love you." He breathes in her ear, before turning to their son. "Morning son." Harry mumbles a "good morning" of his own, looking mostly asleep still.

"I could tell..." she breathes and kisses him back. "Love you too.." she murmurs in return, before turning to Harry, ruffling his hair. "Hello, Mister."

Harry mumbles a "hullo" leaning into his Mum's side, yawning. "Why'd Rose have to be so bloody loud?" He grumbles.

She hugs him and grins. "Because she just got her Hogwarts letter. It's a perfectly good excuse for being loud."

"'s no excuse," he rubs his eyes, wishing he was a toddler and could curl up in his Mum's lap. She gave the best hugs that way.

She laughs. "It is. Anyway, just be happy you can come with us to Diagon Alley."

Waving her wand, food wafted on to the table. "Come on, Breakfast."

James' eyes light up. "Lily Potter I absolutely adore you," he tells her reverently. "You are the light of my life." He was definitely talking to his wife the first time, but his second statement /might/ have been directed at the food. Both kids giggled at their Dad's silliness.

"Only because I made you food?" Lily turns to her children, pouting. "Never marry a man who loves your cooking more than you." she laughs.

He catches her eyes and his own flare with... something. "I'll prove how much I love you later my Lily-flower." His grin is slow and full of promises. Thankfully, the kids are too young to pick up on his meaning.

She giggles and sits next to him, leaning over to kiss his cheek as Rose and Harry take their seats.

James grins at Lily, kissing her nose. "You're adorable."

Lily smirks and serves herself, offering some to her kids, putting some waffles on Rose's plate and her own, as well as serving bacon to Harry.

Still grinning, he tucks into his own breakfast, smirking every so often at his wife.

She is flushing a little more every time that he looked, breaking the silence with mindless chatter.

In contrast James is silent, appearing to concentrate solely on his breakfast. Except for the mischievous twinkle in his eye every time he looks up at his wife, the charade is believable.

Lily is suspicious. "What did you do?"

Feigning surprise with ease, James looks up. "Do? Whatever are you talking about my flower?"

She raises her eyebrows. "James Charlus Potter, what did you do?"

He winces. "Li-ly. Not the middle name!"

Lily smirks. "James /CHARLUS/ Potter... What did you do?" she emphasizes his middle name.

He winces again and mumbles something about Padfoot and a motorbike.

She glares. "Please don't tell me you upgraded his old one or something? Made it more dangerous?"

"Uh... No? Have I ever told you how beautiful you look in the mornings?" James manages a charming smile.

Lily is shocked. "You UPGRADED HIS OLD MOTORBIKE AND MADE IT MORE DANGEROUS?" she cries.

"No..." He looks scared and mumbles, "he got a new one."

"He's going to die one day..." she mumbles. "Fine." she says, louder. "But you are /NOT/ forcing me on it again and Rose and Harry aren't allowed to touch it." she states.

"Uh." He squeaks and Rose looks disappointed. "But Da-ad! You prom..." Looking guilty she cuts her sentence off.

Lily whips around to look at Rose with more shock. "You... You want to go on a flying motorbike but you don't want to fly?" she whips back to glare at her husband. "You PROMISED?"

"Rose made me!" His daughter glares at him in an uncanny likeness to her mother. "Dad." She hisses. Harry snorts into his eggs.

Lily huffs and continues glaring. "You can't blame it on her!"

"Mum. It's only a motorcycle," Rose attempts to placate her mother. "Really. It's perfectly safe."

"Perfectly safe? This is Sirius Orion Black were talking about!" she cries. "He... He's Sirius! The one who would jump off a cliff just for the adrenaline rush!"

"Lily, he's not that bad... anymore." James rejoins the conversation. "And I helped Charm it," he realises this is probably the wrong thing to say but ploughs ahead anyway. "It's perfectly fine."

"But..." she sighs. "Only on the ground. No flying." she gives in.

"Yes Mum." Both father and daughter say in creepy unison. Rose high-fives her Dad under the table.

She glares at the both of them and slumps back in her chair, arms folded. "But whatever you say, I am NOT going on that thing."

"Mum," Harry pipes up. "It's actually rather fun." His father and his sister gape at him.

Lily gapes as well. "Harry!" she then glares. "No. No, no way. I'm not going on that... Death trap!"

"Not fair!" Rose exclaims. "You let him have a go before me?" James mutely shakes his head.

Lily snorts. "Rose, don't think I don't know that you've been going on it since the age of six." she glares at her husband again.

He grins sheepishly. "Not /this/ one though Lils." Rose is still pouting.

Lily huffs. "I already agreed, didn't I? Just no off-ground travel."

"Aye aye ma'am." James salutes his wife with a broad grin.

She rolls her eyes, finishing her breakfast with a huff.

Rose, who'd finished, gets up and hugs her mother. "We'll be fine Mum, promise." She kisses her cheek and jumps up the stairs two at a time.

"If you aren't, I'll make sure that Dad will sleep on the couch for years." she calls after, smiling innocently.

James looks worried and Rose's laugh echoes from upstairs. "Lily! Please don't sentence me to the couch." He begs

"Only if she's not in perfect condition when she comes back." she smiles and kisses him softly. "I love you, as idiotic as you are."

He tries to look offended. "I'm not that stupid." He sniffs.

"You're going to ride a flying motorcycle." she smirks, stating her argument as if it had been obvious. "which had been charmed by Mr Transfiguration-Nerd-But-Can't-do-charms." she pokes her tongue out at him.

Vaguely worried now, he knows his own limitations quite well, he wonders if he can flatter her into re-Charming it. "My Lily-flower," he starts, charming smile in place.

She rolls her eyes. "Of course I'll re-charm it. I don't want my family to die, do I?" she pecks his lips and walks off to the small library.

"You're the most beautiful, most talented, most wonderful witch in the world dear wife!" He calls after her. Harry sounds like he's choking, he is trying not to laugh, but James choses to ignore his son.

She calls back an "I know!", laughter in her voice. "I'll be in here if you need me..." she says, lost in her own little world as she reached her corner.

Turning to his son, James frowns quellingly. "Quiet you." Harry simply shakes with laughter instead. Poking his tongue out him childishly, James sets to cleaning up, by waving his wand once to clear the table and a second time to start the dishes washing themselves.

Lily flicked her wand and the library door slammed shut, sealing her off on a room of peace.

James cocks his head at the sound of the door slamming. "And that was your mother... we won't see her for a while." His smile is fond. "Merlin, I remember our NEWT year... I had to practically tie her to her bed so she'd get some sleep..." He shakes his head, grinning.

Harry is looking at him like he's crazy.

"Oh don't look at me like that, son." He rolls his eyes. "Let's just say your mother takes her studying /very/ seriously."

Harry shrugs and gets up, mumbling a "See ya later" before climbing upstairs, obviously heading back to bed.

"Poor kid," he chuckles to himself, sitting back down at the table and starting to do the crossword in the Prophet.

A few hours later, Lily comes out of the library, a book still in hand. "Rose! Harry!" she called their names. "Come on, I need to go to Diagon Alley, we might as well get your books, Rose."

AN: This is the last chapter for this one. We realised about half-way through this chapter that there were some glaring discrepancies, so we're currently re-writing. Sorry all.