Sometimes I forget that I didn't even go to the funeral. I've played out the scene so many times in my mind, in so many different ways, that my memory has been fooled into believing I really was there. But I wasn't.
Of course, if I was judging the situation through somebody else's eyes, it would make absolute sense that I didn't go. But other people's eyes have witnessed lies and so we cannot trust their judgement.
They were my best friends and I didn't even get to mourn them alongside the others. How many others were there? I mean, really? Were they buried without a fuss in sight of strangers? The very strangers who celebrated their death as though it were some fantastic blessing?
Lily and James' deaths were not blessings. They were not a kindness upon humanity. Nobody who really knew the Potters would have traded in their lives for the shiny reward of Voldemort's death; he wasn't worth that. He wasn't worth them.
People all over the country raised their glasses on their fateful night and thanked the Potters for their sacrifice and that was the end of that. They were just a memory to be thanked for parenting the miracle boy who lived.
But they weren't just parents, they weren't just a miracle, and they weren't just a sacrifice; they were people. The best people I ever knew.
Lily Potter née Evans: pretty, clever, brave.
James Potter: handsome, brilliant, noble.
Vague interpretations of incredibly un-vague human beings. The truth is that you can't stick a few labels on a person and think you know them. Have you ever had one of those ridiculous questions? Something along the lines of: how would you describe yourself in three words? Whoever thought that question up can be described in one word: twat.
Were any of their real friends there, at their funeral? Any at all?
Remus. Remus would've been there.
Every time I lose all sense of thought in anger, the fact that Moony survived gives me hope. James didn't survive. Peter didn't survive – not the one I knew. And I, most certainly, did not survive this bloody war. But Moony did, and Moony would do right by the world, in spite of his loneliness.
I laugh sometimes; they haven't taken that from me yet. I laugh at the thought of Moony at their wake (don't judge me and label me sadistic before I've reached my point); I laugh at the idea of his face. He would have been lonely, scared, angry, upset; he would have probably wished me dead. Through all of the pain and heartbreak he would have experienced, Moony – at least, the Moony in my mind – would have been as polite and dignified as anything. He wouldn't have broken down for all the world to see. He wouldn't have smashed things in the street or punched random guests. He wouldn't have acted the way someone should. Moony would have stayed sombre and reserved after losing everything. This made me laugh. The idea that something is still the same out there will never fail to bring me joy and that makes me laugh.
That accounted for Remus but what of the others?
Dorcas would have been loud in her anguish, never hiding distress and never fearing complaint.
Benjy would have fritted about, not knowing what to do with himself.
Frank and Alice would have... Hold on, they might have actually been there. Were they there? When was my darling cousin brought in? It doesn't matter, I suppose; this is my fantasy funeral and they would have been the pillar of silent support.
Mary would have... She could have been there too, couldn't she? She might have been too ashamed. I would be. Besides, the news might not have reached her in time. How long does it take for an owl to fly to Finland?
Marlene... She... Marlene would have held my hand.
Peter... Never mind.
That's usually where I stop my fantastical guest list. They had more friends, so many more friends, but I can't bring myself to go on. Besides, it's my imagination and if I'm making the rules then there's no funeral to go to at all. Lily and James do not die.
I'm betting that you're feeling a lot of pity for me right now, aren't you? Poor old dog lost everything he cared about and is now slowing being deprived of the few happy memories he retained. Don't feel sorry for me; I had a good run. I'm not telling you this for sympathy. I'm telling you this because you didn't know them. You never knew Cas or Doc or Benjy Fenjy... Or Lily and James. You can read the obituaries and you can visit the graves, but you can't know a person through a few sentences in the paper or a few dates on stone. You can sympathise with my situation all you want, but you don't deserve the luxury.
It's too late for you to get to know them. Any of them. You can't get to know someone through the rumours and legacies they left in their wake. You can try though.
So here it is: the story of my friends. Perhaps if you can begin to understand them, however minute that understanding might be, perhaps you'll also understand why their absence is such a tragedy.
AN: I originally uploaded this with the intention of making it a Jily fic from Sirius' POV but then I realised that it wasn't about James and Lily. It was about Sirius. So this will be a short Sirius multi-chapter with each chapter focusing on a different friend or friendship or couple or family relation.
If you were a fan or the original I promise that most of the old stuff will be in here with a lot of new stuff.
This fic is dedicated to Anna who is perfect.
Thanks so much for reading.
Reviews make Sirius less depressing in future chapters. :D