Happy New Year! I didn't write you a Christmas one-shot, which I apologise for, but I decided to write you a New Year one instead. It's cheesy and predictable, but you know, isn't every New Year? :D
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!
For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne.
We'll take a cup o' kindness yet,
For the sake of auld lang syne.
There was some rather raucous singing emanating from the Potters' living room, remarked Lily as she made her way up the stairs, levitating a basket of clean washing in front of her. The bulk of the singing sounded oddly like Remus, which was a bit of a shock to her, knowing him mainly as a reserved character who kept the other three Marauders in line. She'd always dismissed Sirius's insistence that once he'd had a few Remus Lupin turned into an extroverted rock star of sorts as jabs of humour against his friend, never once assuming him to be right. She snorted a little.
"Lily darls, put it down and have a drink, babe!" James's voice slurred up the stairs. Her stomach fluttered with excitement and panic at his voice, unsure of what exactly to say. She knew she had to talk to him, but to find the right words... that would be a challenge. "I'm... just putting the washing away!" she called back, biting her lip. "I'll be down in a minute."
"No-one cares about washing, Lils!" Sirius's voice shouted over Remus, who was singing the Copacabana at full pelt. "Come on downstairs! I want to open the bubbly."
"We can't do that till midnight!" Lily shouted back. "It's tradition!"
"Aww," whined Sirius, and Lily laughed. "I'm going to open it anyway."
"Don't you dare!" Lily called, giggling. She raised her voice a little. "Marlene, make sure he doesn't open it till midnight!"
A female voice yelled, "Got it!" and they returned to their party, Remus's voice climbing an octave. Lily grinned, directing the washing to their room and closing the door behind her. Leaning against the wooden partition, she let out a sigh, stomach bubbling with anticipation, a smile on her face that she couldn't remove, as if set into her bones. She glanced at the clock mounted above their bed. An hour left in nineteen-seventy-nine. An hour left of childhood, she supposed.
"Oh, Merlin," she whispered, before letting out one hysterical shriek of laughter. Clapping a hand to her mouth, she recomposed herself, sighing slightly. Her other hand found its way to rest upon her stomach.
No wonder she'd put on a few pounds. She had been beginning to get worried; she could have sworn her diet had stayed exactly the same. "Oh, Merlin, Merlin, Merlin," she breathed.
There was a knock on the door and she jumped. "Who is it?" she asked, turning around and putting a hand on the doorknob.
"Peter," replied the voice. "Where's the bathroom?"
Lily opened the door, laughing as she saw her husband's friend standing outside, cheeks flushed with alcohol, legs crossed over each other. "How long have you been coming round here, Pete?" she asked with a giggle.
"I think I've been spiked." He sounded like he had, his words slurred together breathily. Lily smiled widely.
"It's along the landing, dear," she said, putting her hands on his shoulders and turning him in the right direction. "Don't puke or pee on anything, you'll be cleaning it up in the morning." She stifled a laugh as he gave her a thumbs up and proceeded to wobble along in the direction she had pointed him.
"OI! LILY! GET DOWN HERE!"
Lily sighed and did as commanded, the smile still set on her face.
The living room was almost unrecognisable, with the decorations and alcohol discarded around the place, various order members dotted on the sofa and floor. Sirius was standing on a table; Remus was pouring drinks for Mary and Dorcas, wiggling his eyebrows as he did. James leant against the door frame, grinning at her. "Sirius wants to know if we can open the bubbly yet."
"Why?" whined Sirius from the table. "I really want a drink."
"There's plenty around, Sirius," Lily said, gesturing to the bottles littering the place. "You've probably had enough already."
"He hasn't touched a drop," James corrected. "He's being a fussy aristocratic bastard. Apparently if you're a Black you only drink Moet et Chandon."
"I drink other stuff!" Sirius protested, hopping from the table and moving towards the couple at the door.
"What, Pimm's?" James said, grinning. "Bollinger?"
Sirius folded his arms. "Okay. Maybe I'm a bit genteel..."
"A bit?" James snorted. "Only the genteel people use the word genteel-"
He was cut off as Sirius tackled him to the ground.
"Oh, boys," Lily said with a sigh, as Peter wobbled past her again, stepping over Sirius and James, who were both laughing wildly. "I'll miss the seventies."
Peter turned to look at her. "They'll be doing this in thirty years' time. You'll have nothing to miss."
She laughed. That much was true.
Kicking her foot at James, she began to disentangle them. "Oi, Potter, I need a word," she said. Sirius grinned as he looked up.
"Does she still call you Potter?" he said trivially, nudging James. "Or is this some kind of kinky thing the two of you do-" His sentence was cut short when James whacked him with a pillow. Lily giggled, and moved away, rolling her eyes as their play-fighting resumed.
"Do you remember that time in seventh year when James knocked himself out doing that?" Remus said, a fond note of reminiscence in his voice. Lily turned to smile at him.
"Not singing anymore?" she asked, grinning.
Remus shook his head. "It gets to the point where it hurts my own ears and I can't bear to listen anymore. I think it sobers me up, to be honest." He shrugged. "Anyway. Remember?"
"Was that the time with the armchair?" Lily asked, and Remus nodded, laughing a little. "Where he whacked his head on the leg and we thought he was just playing dead?"
"And Sirius drew a crude drawing on his cheek, yes," Remus said. "And then when there was no response we realised that he'd actually banged his head pretty hard."
"Do you remember the time in fifth year with the toothpaste?" Lily asked, giggling. "I brushed my teeth and they turned purple, you pricks!"
Remus laughed. "You know, that was all to get revenge on Narcissa Black for turning down our Pete," he said cheerfully. Lily's eyebrows raised.
"And you inflicted it on everybody?" she asked, laughing as Remus gave a half guilty nod. "It was pretty funny though, looking back on it."
"I doubt Narcissa found it funny," Remus said. "She had the cream cheese tube."
"She deserved it though," James's voice joined, his arm finding its way around Lily's waist. "Made her look even more sour than usual."
Lily chuckled, and turned to put her hands on his shoulders. "I need a word with you, darling."
"Oh, brilliant," he said cheerfully. "Go on then."
Lily smiled. "In private." She turned to Remus. "You don't mind, do you, love?"
Remus put his hands up. "I don't mind in the slightest. I am not offended at all."
"I'm offended," Sirius said from the floor, his signature grin plastered on his face. "First you have no drink I like, second you leave me and don't talk to me once. How very dare you?"
"Yes, how very dare we," Lily repeated airily. "Shall we go outside?" she added quietly to James. James groaned.
"It's ten minutes to midnight, babe," he said with a sigh, indicating the face of his pocket watch. "Couldn't we wait and have some bubbly?"
"It won't take ten minutes," Lily told him, pulling him outside with her, Sirius wolf-whistling from where he lay on the ground.
It was crisp outside, the air stinging against James's cheeks. The grass was wet underneath his bare feet, and he sighed. "So, are we letting in the new year early or something?"
Lily continued to lead him over the lawn, the half-moon reflected in the pond water. She took in a deep breath. "Do you remember when we were in first year?"
James narrowed his eyes. "I do."
"Do you remember when you told me we'd get married?"
"Yes." James folded his arms. "On which occasion would you be referring to? I pretty much asked you every day."
"Well I said no."
"Every day," added James.
Lily grinned. "You were creepy. You'd do the goldfish stare and I vowed I'd never marry that ugly mug."
James pouted. "Are you laughing at me?"
"No," Lily insisted, grinning. "I'm saying, I was wrong."
"I... know that," James replied slowly. He put his hand forward and touched her forehead mockingly. "Are you feeling alright?"
She knocked his hand away impatiently.
"In second year you told me we'd live together one day."
"Is this really the time for nostalgia?"
"James, bear with me," Lily said, putting a hand out to signify that she was in fact completely sane. James frowned, looking completely bemused, but allowed her to continue. "I was wrong when I said no, yeah?"
"And you said we'd have a cat."
"I said we'd have many," James corrected. "You were kind of right when you said no about that." His face lit up. "Is this your way of saying we're getting another cat?"
"Cos I think we have room for at least four more," James continued. "We could even get a dog to keep Sirius company..."
"And then I can name them after the Beatles..."
"And we can have John and Paul and George and Ringo – Ringo'll be the cool one, seeing as he isn't in real life..."
James stopped. "Yes?"
Lily grinned as she heard the countdown begin inside. "We're going to be parents."
"Pregnant as in..." James seemed a little speechless. "Pregnant as in..."
"We're going to have a baby, James."
James's voice sounded quite weak. "I thought so."
Lily burst out laughing, and James smiled feebly.
"A baby," he repeated dazedly. "A baby. Blimey."
A firework cracked from somewhere above them and there was a huge cheer.
"Merlin, it's nineteen-eighty," James mumbled. "Nineteen-eighty. We're going to be parents. In nineteen-eighty." His smile widened. "Oh my God. We're going to be parents. We're having a baby."
"We are," Lily said, giggling. "You've said." She smiled up at him. "Well, Happy New Year, I suppose-"
He grabbed her by the shoulders and kissed her, and she melted into it, overwhelming happiness taking hold of her.
"Oi! Lovebirds! Get back inside!" Sirius hollered. "I have to see the New Year in and I can't do that if you're already outside!" There was a pause. "Plus I want a drink!"
Lily and James broke apart, laughing. "There's no pleasing some people," James said, taking her hand. "Shall we?"
Sirius, as the darkest haired person of the bunch, was sent out of the back door to run around to the front as to see the Old Year out and the New Year in, only to find the front door locked. Champagne corks were popped, fireworks banged, people cheered. It was like another world was surrounding James, who could barely keep the grin off of his face. Colours blurred around him, laughter hit his ears. I'm going to be a father. I'm going to be a father. I'M GOING TO BE A FATHER! He was barely aware that he was laughing too as his hands were pulled across his body and they formed a line.
"FOR AULD LANG SYNE, MY DEAR! FOR AULD LANG SYNE!" roared the group, bobbing up and down, Arthur Weasley miming playing the bagpipes. James gave Lily's hand a squeeze; she looked up and met his eyes, a grin splitting across her face. "How expensive are babies?" he asked with a grin. Lily let go of his hand to give him a light smack, before laughing.
"You're terrible, you," she told him, taking his hand again.
"But you love me."
"That's questionable," Lily said with a wink, before turning back to continue with the singing. James opened his mouth and knocked his head back.
"WE'LL TAKE A CUP OF KINDNESS YET FOR THE SAKE OF AULD LANG SYNE!"