Lily Potter glanced sideways at her husband. He was as handsome as ever, striking a hand through his hair when he noticed her watching. She smiled. Over the years, it had become something of a habit of him and even after they got married two years ago, he still couldn't resist doing that. She often teased him about it.
"Do you think you still need to woo me?" she would say. And his reply would always be the same: "No, but it can never hurt to know I'm still in the race." They would always laugh about that and today was no different.
She curled up beside him.
"You know, I have been thinking," she said.
"Yes?" he hummed.
"Wouldn't it be nice if Harry had a little brother or sister?"
He nearly choked on the gulp of coffee he had just taken. He coughed and she patted him on the back. "No need to get all worked up about," she said a little hurt. "It was only a suggestion." Lily had always dreamt of one day having a big family. Molly Weasley, a fellow member of the Order, was pregnant with her seventh and motherhood looked really well on her. Lily was a little jealous of her, but Molly was about ten years older than she was, so there was still plenty of time to raise herself a big family too.
"I wasn't getting worked up about it," he protested. "You just caught me off guard, that's all. Harry is barely a year old."
"Fourteen months," she corrected.
"That's what I'm saying. But I think you're right. It would be absolutely wonderful if Harry had a little brother or sister." He lifted her chin and placed a kiss on her nose. "Care to practice a bit?" he smiled teasingly.
Lily smiled back and leant in to kiss him. "You know, that's not a bad idea at all."
Harry chose that precise moment to make his presence known. They let themselves fall back onto the couch and Lily sighed. Bad timing Harry, she thought. They waited a bit to see if he would stop crying on his own account but when he didn't, she sighed again.
"I'll go and check on him," James said and stood up from the couch. He went upstairs and she could hear him walking around in the baby room, making soothing noises to little Harry. He calmed down a bit and when he was no longer crying, the footsteps of her husband came down the stairs again.
"Is he asleep?" she asked.
"No," he shook his head. "I think he might have picked up a minor disease somewhere, he's got rashes all over his arms." Upon seeing her worried face, he added: "Don't worry, I've put some ointment on it, he'll be fine. I've let him ride Sirius' broom for a round. You know how he loves that thing."
"James!" she complained. "It'll take ages before he goes back to sleep now!"
"Ah well, one round won't hurt," he grinned. "I swear, one day he'll make a fine Chaser, just as his father was."
She shook her head disapprovingly. Even though fatherhood had matured James Potter, there were days he still had some of his boyish mannerisms.
The playful atmosphere of just minutes ago was gone. They sat back on the couch together and James picked up that day's copy of the Daily Prophet.
"I wish this war was over soon," he said, pointing at the article on the front page.
Lily sighed. "Me too. Far too many people have died already. Poor Marlene. Frank and Alice are devastated."
Marlene McKinnon had been a member of the Order of the Phoenix, until she was murdered just two days ago by Voldemort's Death Eaters. She had not really been close to Marlene, but she knew her sister Alice very well: they had been in the same year at Hogwarts.
"You know, it kinda makes me thinking if having another baby is actually a smart thing, considering the times we're in," Lily said.
"Why? You think Voldemort will want to come and kill a little baby?" He raised an eyebrow mockingly.
"No of course not. But we've confronted him three times already. He's growing stronger, you know that too. If I got pregnant, I might not be able to defend myself as well as I would otherwise."
"Nonsense. I'll be by your side and if your defences should falter, mine would never let you down."
She liked that he was so protective, but his words didn't make the knot in her stomach go away. "But still, what if he comes after us and Harry gets hurt along the way…"
"Voldemort can't come for us in our house, you know that.."
"I do. It's just that I've got this feeling…" she hesitated. "A feeling like something terrible is about to happen." She sighed.
He let his hand go through her hair and said reassuringly:
"Peter will never betray us. Sirius was right: they will never think he's our Secret Keeper. There is just no way that Voldemort can come for us, so Harry is perfectly safe."
Life only allowed him another hour, before it proved him to be terribly wrong.