A/N: Forgive me, it's been a while.
The Little Things
Thereisaspiderontheceiling.Thereisamassive,blackspideronmyceiling.Lily gave a little shudder and pulled the covers up to her eyes. One would think that in a castle full of magically gifted teachers, it might actually be arachnid, insect, bug, and monster free. But apparently life without spiders was too much to ask.
The spider moved, and Lily let out an involuntary shriek.
Oh, Merlin, where was Alice when she actually neededher? She huffed, and slowly peeled the sheets back away from her, careful not to disturb the spider. Her feet searched blindly for a pair of fuzzy bunny slippers. Dragging one hand through her hair and rubbing her eyes with another, she groped along the wall toward the door, tripping over a stray Arithmancy book along the way.
"Bloody ow!" Lily hissed, leaning against the wall for a moment to employ a few of her preferred swear words.
Lily continued to inch along through her dorm until she finally reached the door handle. She stole a quick glance at the ceiling, where the spider sat stilly. "Er, stay," commanded Lily.
She stuck her head out the door and looked down the hall. "James!" she whispered. After listening for a moment, she repeated herself. When the sound of creaking bed springs didn't respond, she crept further down the hall.
Raising her hand, Lily momentarily considered knocking on her co-Head's door, before deciding against it. Turning the knob as quietly as possible, she pushed the door open and tiptoed into the room. She pressed her back against the door, not quite daring enough to go any nearer.
"Potter!" hissed Lily. The lumpy mass on the bed did not stir. "Potter! Oh, for the love." She crept closer to the four-poster bed, her bunny slippers shuffling along the floor. The red curtain hangings were open and James's wand was lying carelessly next to his glasses on the bedside table. He wasn't wearing a shirt, but Lily tried not to dwell on that. "Oi, James!" she tried again, prodding his arm with her finger. "Wake up!"
James's mouth opened and closed sleepily, and he turned over and clutched his pillow tighter in his fist. Lily grabbed the corners of the pillow, and with a hard yank, whispered harshly "wake up!" He fell out of bed, still gripping that blasted pillow.
Lily stared down at him as he blinked blearily and rubbed his eyes. "Might as well have been dead," she said in a light tone.
"Lily?" asked James, squinting up at her as though he knew another redhead that might burst into his room at any second. "What're you doin' 'ere? It's," he yawned widely, "two A.M."
She hugged the pillow to her chest like a child who had lost her precious unicorn stuffed animal. "I―I need your help," she said, looking at him with wide, innocent eyes.
"Can't it wait till morning?"
Lily shook her head quickly. "No, I…I won't be able to sleep. Please, James," she added.
He gave a long sigh, and raked his hand through his messy black hair before nodding. "Yeah, all right." James slouched over to the giant armoire in the corner and plucked out a white, v-neck shirt. He pulled it on over his head, and gave the strings on his pajama pants a quick tug. After grabbing his wand and shoving his glasses onto his face, he gestured to Lily. "Go on, lead the way."
Self-consciously tugging the hem of her pajama shorts down in the back, she waddled back down the short corridor to her dorm room. But James was completely oblivious, rubbing his eyes tiredly and trying futilely to simply stay upright as he followed behind Lily.
"There," she said, pointing at the black blob on her ceiling when they entered her room.
James squinted at the ceiling, glancing sideways at Lily doubtfully. He took off his glasses and rubbed them on his cotton t-shirt before placing them back on his face. "Is that… Is that a spider?" squeaked James in an oddly high-pitched voice.
"Hardly," mumbled Lily. "Bloody massive…"
"Almost looks like a baby gorilla to me," he added, his eyes twinkling and filled with sleep as he smirked down at her.
She glared back at James, hands on her hips. "Will you please just kill the spider already?"
James's grin widened as he raised his wand lazily, pointing it at the black spot on the ceiling. "Sure thing, Lily. Confring―"
Lily made a wild grab for James's arm. "Are you mad?" she shouted, clutching onto his forearm. "You'll set the whole ruddy castle on fire!"
James looked incredibly tired. He fixed Lily with an uninterested stare and shrugged lamely. "Well if you've got a better idea, I'm all ears."
"Kill it with your shoe!" she exclaimed, gesturing wildly around her. "Squish it with a shampoo bottle! I don't care as long as you're not trying to blow the place up!"
He stared blankly at Lily for a moment, blinked, and then disappeared from the room. She gaped after him.
"Er, James?" asked Lily as he slipped through the doorway. "James, where are you going?" She eyed the spider warily, and edged closer to the door.
A few seconds later, James returned, shoe in one hand, tissue in another. Without saying a word, he clambered up on Lily's bed, and smacked the shoe against the ceiling. Bits and pieces of the spider-gorilla rained down from the ceiling and landed silently on the carpeted floors. James picked the spider up with the tissue and tossed it in the garbage can. Stifling a yawn, he strode through the doorway into the hall.
"James?" called Lily quietly after him. His hand paused on his own door handle and he looked up. She smiled. "Thanks."
James just smirked. "G'night, Lil," he said before shutting the door behind him.
Lily continued to stand there, her lips turned up slightly at the closed door. Finally she whispered, "Good night, James" and crawled back into bed.
A/N: This didn't come out the way I had hoped it would… My English teacher lectured about the class's tendencies to comma splice the crap out of papers today, so you could say I'm totally paranoid. Dangling modifiers, also, have been tormenting me in my sleep. That coupled with the fact that I wrote this in a state of complete exhaustion and you end up with a very short, dismal one shot. Review?