Red, Green, Silver, Gold.
"I sat there in the Three Broomsticks for FOUR hours. He never showed up. I suppose he was back at the castle laughing about me with his stupid little friends. I don't even know why I promised to meet up with him, we're supposed to be enemies of some sort. Even though we're both Gryffindors. Though, in a way, I'm glad he never showed up. I wouldn't know what to tell Severus if we ended up friends, never mind - god forbid - dating..."
Lily stopped writing in her diary as soon as she heard a noise from the entrance of the common room. She swiftly locked the red, leather-bound book and tucked it underneath the sofa with her quill. She turned around to see who had disturbed her; it was James.
"Lily." he was less confident around her today, a little nervous even. He played with the edge of his tie, and stared down at the red and gold stripes. Lily stood, anger cursing through her.
"And I suppose you have some extravagant, well-thought of excuse for why I was sat alone for four hours last night? I know you said you'd be late, James, but don't you think that's a bit ridicu-"
"Lily, let me talk." James had stopped fiddling and had made his way towards her. Standing at the other side of the battered old sofa that consumed most of the space in the room, he continued his apology. "I didn't show last night because I was in detention. I'm sorry."
Lily mulled this thought over in her mind a little while. It's true, James was prone to getting the odd detention or two, but it just seemed too simple to be the reason. After about a minute of silence, she decided to believe him.
"Very well, James." she said. Sitting down with her back to him, she nudged the diary a little further under the sofa with a delicate foot. "But please make sure you don't do anything stupid when- I mean, IF we ever meet up again." James' mouth spread into it's usual smug smile.
"I won't, Lils', you have my word."
He rustled her red hair slightly with his hand as he walked around the sofa to see her face. "How's right now for you?" and with that, he winked at her. Lily's blush was obvious against her pale skin, and she let her hair drop over her face in a poor attempt to hide it.
"Sure." she replied, a small smile on her dainty lips. James held out a hand, but Lily ignored it. She rose from the sofa and picked up an emerald colour scarf from the table, it matched her eyes. She looked up at James' face as she tied it around her neck, and the hazel orbs staring back at her made her feel calm and warm inside. It was Lily, this time, who held out her hand to him, and, without a second thought, he took it.
Snape was sat in the library reading up on potions when he saw them though the doorway. James and Lily holding hands. He felt a sharp, stabbing pain to his heart as he watched them joking and smiling with each other, and he couldn't help but imagine that it was him in Potter's place. When they had disappeared around the corner, Snape realised that he had been holding his breath. He sighed and coughed a little before he realised that the book he was reading had small, wet marks on it. Tear stains. He raised a pale hand to his even paler face to brush aside his lengthy black hair and composed himself before replacing the potions book back on the shelf and following the wrongly matched couple into the corridor. As he blended subtly in to the shadows, he listened into their current conversation. He'd wished he hadn't.
"Hey, you okay Lils'?" Snape was glad he wasn't using her full name. He didn't deserve it.
"Hmm? Oh, I'm fine. Don't worry about me." Snape smiled as he saw her drop Potter's hand and begin to tug the end of her scarf.
"Lily. Seriously. What's wrong?" Snape scowled at him from the darkness.
"It's nothing, James, honestly." hearing her say his name made Snape catch his breath.
"Lily, please." Potter placed his hands on her shoulders and stared directly into her eyes.
"It's... It's Severus." Snape instinctively backed up further into the shadows. Lily walked a few steps away from her Gryffindor friend as she spoke. "I... I don't know. I feel I'm betraying him somehow. You're so mean to him, James. Why is it that you're so mean to him?" Snape's heart was racing with anticipation.
"Lils'... I'm sorry. It's not that I don't like him- I don't, but that's not the point- it's just that he doesn't deserve you. He's a Slytherin for Merlin's sake! Isn't that enough for you to realise what type of person he is?" Snape's hands curled defensively into fists, even though he knew he had no chance against James.
"No, it isn't. And if you believe that houses determine who we should be friends with, maybe I shouldn't be stood here with you. Yes, I don't like his friends. They're all creepy, and yes, they just happen to be in Slytherin. But Severus is different." She paused and locked eyes with James. "He's a friend." Lily was talking at a million miles per hour and her defensive tone cut straight through Potter like a knife cuts butter. Snape's fingers relaxed and he let a smile return to his face. But James' sudden, rather violent outburst of Slytherin hate had left him feeling slightly queazy.
Lily stormed off, leaving a shocked James alone in the corridor. She marched into the common room and resumed her diary entry.
"Ha! As if! Me and James Houses-Are-Everything Potter? No. If he can't accept that Severus is a nice person, then I can't accept him as a friend."
Lily wiped a stray tear from her cheek and entered her dormitory. She looked around to find the room empty, and threw herself onto her bed. She just couldn't quite understand what James had against Severus. A person is more than why the sorting hat says. Just because he was in Slytherin didn't make him evil, did it? Of course not. She sat up and tried to think of a way to prove to James that not all Slytherins were bad. As she removed her scarf, a finger caught the knot of her tie and a plan formulated in her mind. She grabbed her robes from the chair next to her bed, and purposefully stormed out of the common room. She quickly made her way to the library, a spring in her step and a smirk on her face. When she arrived, she looked around for the small, mousy Slytherin girl named Amy who had an obsession for James Potter. She soon found her nestled between two piles of books, all on love potions.
"Amy!" Lily said, enthusiasm in her voice. "How are you?" Amy looked confused and cocked her head sideways.
"I'm sorry, but do I know you?" she looked Lily up and down. "Ah, no I don't. But I know OF you. Lily, isn't it?" Lily smiled.
"Yes, that's me. So, I was just wondering-"
"You're friends with James, aren't you?" Amy said, rising to her feet. She handed the current book she was reading to Lily and walked past her, "what's he like?" Lily dropped the book and followed her.
"Cocky, arrogant, not to be trusted... The list goes on." Amy looked over her shoulder, a mischievous smile on her face.
"Oh I bet it does." Amy said with a wink. Lily coughed.
"Erm, yeah... So I was wondering-"
"Is he a good kisser?" Amy stopped and turned to face Lily, who stared back at the Slytherin girl, not quite believing what she'd just said.
"Erm, sorry?" Lily questioned. Amy tossed her cropped black hair slightly.
"I said, is he-"
"No, I know what you said. I just don't know why you said it."
"Because I want to know."
"Why are you asking me?"
"Well, you've kissed him."
"No I haven't!" Lily's voice was rising with anger.
"Fine... I'll have to find out myself." Amy said, and began to walk off.
"Actually," Lily grabbed her wrist, "that's what I want to talk to you about." Amy paused and turned slowly. Her intrigued features slowly blended into an excited smile.
"Tell me more."
James was furious. Not with Lily, but with himself. He paced around the corridors at an alarming speed, cross and disappointed that he'd messed up what may have been his last chance with Lily Evans. Damn that Snape! And damn those Slytherins!
She slept well that night, no worries about James and nothing but hope and anticipation for the day ahead. When she awoke, she realised it was darker than usual. Winter was quickly approaching. She dressed in to her robes at twice the normal speed and swiftly made her way to the Great Hall for breakfast. She stood at the entrance for a little while, floods of students flocking past her with nothing but empty stomachs on their minds. Her green eyes darted around the room, searching for Severus. She scrutinisingly scanned the Slytherin table, but to no avail. Just as she was about to give in and make her way forward, a voice behind her caused her to jump slightly.
"Hey Lils'. Not coming for breakfast?" Great, Lily thought to herself, James.
"Not hungry." Not anymore, she added in her head. She did not turn to look at him.
"Suit yourself." a streak of disappointment shone through his voice like a lighthouse in the dark, he was definitely not trying to hide his feelings from her. James blended in with the passing crowd and Lily turned on her heels to leave. However, when she did turn around, she came face to chest with the boy she'd been looking for.
"Severus!" she looked up at his face and saw him smile.
"Lily," they walked into the hall together, 'hi. You not eating?" The concern in his voice made Lily blush.
"Yes, I was just waiting for you. I thought we could eat together today." Lily reached a hand into her robe and pulled out a long, thin piece of material.
"How-" Severus saw what she held. "Lily. Where on earth did you get that? And what in the world are you doing?"
'I'll show you." and with that, Lily removed her Gryffindor tie, wrapped it around her wrist, and swapped it with the Slytherin one that she had taken from Amy. Severus laughed.
"You're mad, Lily. You know that?" Lily smiled.
"You're just as sane as I am!" she laughed too, and they both sat down at the Slytherin table for breakfast.
What? What the hell was this? Lily Evans sitting at the SLYTHERIN table? James stared in anger and nudged Sirius.
"You seen that?" he said, not noticing that his friend was halfway through a piece of toast.
"Mwhamh-?" Sirius mumbled, looking up from his plate, "oh." he swallowed.
"Exactly. God, for the brightest witch of her age she really is stupid." James looked around at the rest of the Slytherin table. Everyone, except Snivvely, seemed to have the same reaction as himself. Lily, the only red head at the table, was sat there sticking out like sore thumb ignoring the disgusted glances that came from the table of Gryffindor-haters. She was sat there as if it was normal, yet she had a Slytherin tie around her neck! He wasn't having it. James couldn't for this. He was reaching into his robes for his wand just as Lupin sat down.
"Hey Potter!" James turned to face his friend, his hand returning to his side in the defensive clenched fist it was before.
"Lupin!" he said, faking a smile and patting the werewolf on the back, then nodding in Lily's direction. "Have you seen that?" his smile melted into a scowl.
"Who's the red- oh." Lupin stared in disbelief at Lily as she continued to laugh and bond with the long-haired enemy. "Oh this is not happening. James, tell me that's not Lily."
"Oh that's Lily, alright. The traitor. After all I've done for her!"
"James, calm down." Sirius placed a hand on James' shoulder. He shrugged it off.
"After all we've been through together!"
"James!" by this time Sirius and Lupin were both shouting at James, who had risen to his feet in his rage. The entire Gryffindor table stopped eating and stared at him.
"Sorry." he said meekly, returning to his seat. "Sorry."
"James," Lupin began, pushing James' shoulder so he was forced to look at him, "are you okay?" James blinked.
"Well what do you think, Remus?" Lupin looked down, embarrassed. "Of course I'm not! She's completely mental!"
"Mate.." Sirius began. James turned to look at him. "I know this is bad, but believe me when I say that it'll be fine tomorrow. She won't last a day without a Professor noticing that she's just casually changed ties." James knew this was true, and he reluctantly nodded in acceptance.
"Yeah, you're right." sighed James.
But he couldn't have been more wrong.