Tea and Biscuits
Disclaimer: JK Rowling owns the rights to the Harry Potter universe, including characters and any other information you recognise.
Dedication: To the reviewers of 'Of Potter and Evans', you guys are truly, truly amazing. Sorry if I haven't gotten back to any of you personally, it was my full intention to however I got very busy with studies and obviously writing this. But I still appreciate the time you took to read and review it, they all made my day. Each review inspired me to continue, so give yourself a pat on the back and a bowl of cookies and cream ice cream.
OKAY SO THIS IS AN EXTREMELY IMPORTANT NOTE
At the moment I'm chopping the story up so that there are more chapters and they aren't as long. It's going to work out better this way, trust me. I'm also editing it and fixing it up, so hopefully the grammatical errors will be improved. At this rate, after the first draft has been edited and chopped into different chapters, I will hope to have a brand new chapter out very soon. So hopefully you all enjoyed this story enough to continue reading.
And thanks an insane amount to everyone who reviewed and put this on their favourites and alerts lists, you're all awesome! I'm sure I responded to everyone, but just in case I got preoccupied, then here's your response.
It was another unbearably humid day as Lily Evans sat at the kitchen counter fanning her bright red face with the latest edition of Witch Weekly when her mother entered the kitchen carrying a small, dusty fan with her. The cord dragged along the white tiles and she hoisted it up onto the bench with a triumphant sigh.
"This should make things cooler, sweetheart" the older woman said as she connected the plug into the wall and switched it on. The blades began to rotate slowly at first before picking up speed and spinning in a blur, warm air blowing out at them.
Lily coughed and waved the magazine in the direction of the fan and pushed herself back.
"Perhaps I should have wiped down the dust first," her mother muttered with a sheepish expression upon her face and her daughter laughed as she moved away from the counter and poured herself a cold glass of water.
Mrs. Evans switched off the fan and grabbed a tea towel from one of the drawers while she waited for the blades to come to a standstill, and accepted a glass of water from Lily. She gulped it down with a satisfied sigh and smacked her lips before setting to work and rubbed at the specks of dust.
Lily sighed as she leaned back against the kitchen sink and moodily pushed away the stray strands of hair that clung to her face. She was silent for a moment until a sudden thought sprang to mind.
"Why don't we go with Petunia to have dinner at Vernon's?"
Her mother straightened up instantly and turned to look at her with an incredulous look upon her face.
"Who are you and what have you done with Lillian Marie Evans?"
Lily rolled her emerald green eyes and shrugged.
"As much as I loathe the man, he has air conditioning," she explained and her mother smiled fondly and shook her head as she turned back to rub the last blade.
"Sorry sweetheart, but I already have dinner planned. And I think Petunia said that tonight was something special."
Lily tilted her head curiously.
"What are they celebrating?"
Mrs. Evans sighed as she stepped back and tossed the tea towel over her daughter's head into the basket by the door. She flicked the switch of the fan once more and it began to blow out warm air, fortunately without the dust.
"Oh, well it's been about four years since they started dating," Mrs. Evans responded.
Lily smiled as she made her way over and sat back down at the counter, enjoying the somewhat cool air now emanating from the fan.
"Four years? Wow, I didn't realise it was that long… Do you think he'll, you know-"
Lily shrugged, turning to see her mother's anxious reaction.
"Well they have been together a while, and Tuney is always staying with him; I've hardly seen her this summer," Lily replied and had another sip of her drink.
Mrs. Evans frowned, looking thoughtful.
"Who knows? I mean, surely its set to be on the cards at some point, right?"
Lily grinned and pushed her loose strands of hair back once more.
"I look forward to the days of combined Christmases with the Dursley's," she said with a hint of sarcasm.
Mrs. Evans opened her mouth to the respond when there was a light knock coming from the front door and she closed her mouth and rose to her feet.
"Be nice," she warned as she departed from the kitchen and Lily chuckled and pulled lightly at the soft yellow singlet that was clinging to her body. She groaned as she leant against the counter and let the cool air blow over her sweating body.
"She's right through here," Mrs. Evans could be heard saying from the hallway.
Lily lifted her head curiously and turned to see who was entering the kitchen behind her mother and almost slipped off the chair when she met a pair of mischievous dark grey eyes.
Sirius Black strolled into the room, portraying an air of elegance as his sleek, shoulder length black hair caught the light in the kitchen. His charming smile widened as he noticed Lily sitting there gaping at him.
"Hello, Evans," he greeted as he made his way over to her and Lily said nothing, just stared.
Her mother nudged her and the redhead cleared her throat.
"Sirius! What a er… surprise," she said with a polite smile and Sirius grinned handsomely as she gestured to a seat. He strode around the counter and sat on the stool and sighed.
"Lovely house you have here," he remarked, nodding at Mrs. Evans who blushed. "It has a nice home-like feel to it."
Lily smiled as Sirius continued to glance around the kitchen with interest.
"Mum, this is Sirius. I don't know if he mentioned, but he-"
"Goes to school with you? Yes he did," her mother finished and Sirius winked in her direction.
There was a long, awkward silence about the room then and Lily chewed on her fingernails as Sirius continued observing the room and her mother looked from one to the other.
"I think I'm going to go put some washing on," she said standing and grabbing the basket by the door on the way out. The silence continued until Lily finally snapped.
"What are you doing here?"
Sirius' eyes locked on hers and he smirked.
"Sitting in your kitchen, and yourself?"
She narrowed her eyes dangerously and he cleared his throat.
"I don't see the harm in a friendly visit," he said and she raised an eyebrow at him.
"I wouldn't exactly call us 'friends', Sirius."
He feigned a hurt expression and placed a delicate hand over his chest theatrically.
"How rude of you, I have come all this way to see you and this is what I get in return?"
She sighed and rubbed her temple wearily.
"I'm not in the mood, Black. It's sweltering in here. Why are you at my house?"
He ignored her and turned to look out at the street through the window above the sink.
"Is it always this deserted?" he asked and she rolled her eyes.
The corner of his mouth twitched. "Fascinating," he murmured.
"Would you like something to drink? Water or tea perhaps?"
He smiled genuinely and nodded. "Tea, thank you."
Lily bustled over to the kettle and set about making the tea while Sirius got up from his seat and made his way over to the portrait of a house beside the door leading outside. He slid his hands into his pockets and stared at the painting, tilting his head to get another perspective.
"Is this your house?" he asked after examining it and she glanced up from the cups and nodded.
"My sister, Petunia, made it a couple of years ago," she explained and he smiled, turning back to face her.
"That she is. She's a few years older than me."
"Is she much like you?"
Lily shrugged, keeping her eyes on the task at hand.
"Not really, we're quite different. She looks more like our mother," she said and lifted a glass jar. "Sugar?"
He nodded. "Please," he said walking back over to the counter as she set a steaming cup of tea on a coaster in front of him. "Thanks, Evans."
She smiled as she sat back down and added sugar when he was done with it. Instead of lifting her tea to her lips, she watched him curiously.
"How are you?"
He shrugged, sipping his beverage and replacing it back onto the coaster.
"Fine. I moved into a flat of my own a few weeks ago," he told her and faked a smile. "It's grand."
She raised an inquisitive eyebrow.
"Are you lonely, Sirius?"
He let out a bark like laugh and shook his head. "God, no. I have my own space. It's hard to come by at Hogwarts with Ja…" he trailed of and drank some of his tea and Lily nodded understandably. She lifted her cup to her lips and sipped it.
"Have you heard from anyone?"
He gave a sad smile and shook his head. "Not really, you?"
She shrugged. "The occasional letter from Mary, and Marlene wrote a few times. Oh, and I wrote Remus once or twice but he didn't respond. He probably just wants some space of his own too."
Sirius nodded and cleared his throat awkwardly.
She glanced upwards and nodded. "Once. Would you like a biscuit?"
He nodded and Lily pulled a large jar over and opened the lid, offering it to him. She stood up and got a plate from the cupboard and placed a few biscuits on it before closing the lid and pushing it back against the wall.
"What will you do with your flat when we go back to Hogwarts?"
Sirius didn't reply for a moment and took a bite from his biscuit, averting his eyes as he did.
"You are going back, aren't you?" she asked leaning forwards on her crossed arms and he shrugged, still not meeting her gaze.
"I don't know. I was thinking about maybe getting some work and then figuring it out from there."
She sighed and shook her head.
"Hogwarts won't be the same without you, you know."
He rolled his eyes.
"It's just a castle, Lily."
She raised her eyebrows.
"Really, Sirius? Even I know it was always more than that. It's your home."
He sighed, running his fingers through his hair and letting it fall around his face in smooth curtains.
"What's the point? I'm a screw up."
"You are most definitely not!"
He glanced up at her in surprise.
"Listen," she said in a calm tone. "I know we aren't exactly friends, but we do get along… When you're not hexing innocent first years, that is. I also know that no matter what happened last term, you're not a screw up. You're Sirius Black. That's got to stand for something!"
He chuckled darkly.
"Exactly, Lily. Black. I'm a Black, true to form."
She shook her head.
"You're not like your family, Sirius. You're a good person."
He snorted and sipped his tea.
"I don't know what rock you've been living under, but in case you've forgotten, I tried to kill your best mate. Good people don't do that."
"You didn't though, and I don't think you were really aiming to do that, were you? It was a prank. A stupid prank."
He smiled sourly, meeting her eyes.
"I appreciate the effort, Evans, but you don't have to sugar coat it. He could have died, and the only reason he didn't was because James had the balls to save him."
"Speaking of sugar, have another biscuit," she said pushing the plate over towards him and he grinned and shook his head, reaching for a biscuit.
"Anyway, I didn't come here to talk about me. How's your summer?"
She tucked her hair behind her ear and crossed her arms nervously.
"I don't know if you've heard, you were probably busy with the whole prank-gone-wrong fiasco, but Severus and I are no longer friends."
Sirius raised his eyebrows and chewed on his biscuit thoughtfully.
She sighed, twiddling her thumbs.
"I caught him hexing a group of second years with his 'mates'. It was a week after you-know-what."
"And that's it? You called it quits?"
"They were all Muggleborns," she said with a slight edge to her tone and Sirius winced.
He shook his head.
"Not really. A little bit, but only because I know how it feels to be disconnected from your best friend. And it's about time you realised he's not the same kid from the park."
"How do you know so much?"
He grinned and took another biscuit.
"I have my ways. Now tell me, has he been to visit at all this summer?"
She shook her head solemnly.
"Not at all. After the OWLs incident he wouldn't stop coming to see me during the holidays, I couldn't get rid of him. Now it's like he doesn't care."
Sirius gulped down the rest of his tea.
"Do you honestly think that?"
She smiled and shook her head.
"I think he cares, he just has a horrible way of showing it. He's caught up in this whole Death Eater fantasy and it seems like he just can't get a grip on what's right and what's wrong. Eventually we had to acknowledge that we're drifting apart and that ultimately, we're on two completely different sides."
She picked up a biscuit and bit into it and he watched her for a moment before saying, "maybe it's for the best."
"And you and Potter? Do you think that's for the best?"
He was silent for a moment, his eyes appearing slightly unfocused and she waited patiently for him to respond.
"Sometimes, yeah," he said quietly and she patted his hand kindly.
"They'll forgive you, you know. They all will. You're the Marauders; it's all for one and one for all isn't it?"
A confused expression crossed his face as he looked up at her.
She smiled, shaking her head and laughing quietly to herself.
"Nothing. But Remus, Peter and James, they will forgive you. It's just going to take time, that's all."
He shrugged, crossing his arms over his chest.
"I'll live. Besides, it's not like I don't deserve it. They have every right to be pissed off at me, especially Remus. What I did… It wasn't okay. And I realise that now."
There was a pause, then "why did you do it?"
"I overheard him talking to Regulus, my-"
"Brother, I know. Go on."
Sirius scratched his head. "Snape was trying to convince him that he should really consider joining Voldemort; said there was most likely a spot reserved for him when he finished school, if he was serious about it. He told him it would re-establish the Black family reputation."
Lily let out a soft groan. "Idiot," she murmured.
"He said he would think about it."
"He was with Snape when they were torturing those Muggleborns," she closed her eyes. "I'm sorry Sirius," she whispered re-opening her eyes and he shrugged, reaching for yet another biscuit.
"He's chosen his way by the looks of it and I've chosen mine. Sort of like you and Snape, huh?"
She watched him closely for a moment and said, "You hoped he wouldn't."
"As did you, I'm sure."
She shook her head sadly.
"How on earth did we get here? Moaning about our bitter lives?"
Sirius grinned, noting the dramatic tone.
"Well, I tried to murder your now ex-best friend and then you offered me tea."
She sighed, flicking a biscuit crumb at him.
"I still don't believe you intended to. Clearly, you weren't thinking."
He shrugged his shoulders and glanced at the portrait of the house. "I wasn't really. I was angry, although it's no excuse. When I'd calmed down and realised what I'd done it was almost too late. I told James and he took off."
There was silence.
"He got there just in time. Bless him."
"He'll come around, I know it. He's a very loyal person, James is."
Sirius tilted his head to the side.
"He's not all bad, you know. He's a good guy, a great friend."
Lily blushed slightly, and tucked her loose strands of hair back behind her ear once more.
"I know that, he just doesn't always show it. Especially when-"
"You're around," Sirius finished and she nodded. "He likes you. He might show off a bit and drive you mental, but he only does it because he fancies you."
"Was this the real reason you came here today? To be your ex best mate's wing man?"
Sirius chuckled and leaned back from the table.
"Perhaps. And like you said, I am awfully lonely."
"I see, and so you thought you'd bug me?"
"Don't pretend you haven't enjoyed my company, Evans. You fretted when I told you I might not return."
She poked her tongue out childishly and said, "And I really think you're making a mistake."
He shrugged it off.
"I haven't decided yet. But none the less, I think you should get to know James a great deal more."
Lily rolled her eyes and picked up a biscuit, offering the last one to him by nudging the plate in his direction.
"Why are you pushing so hard?"
"Because he's liked you for years; and I've had to sit around and listen to him complain about how much you hate him and god forbid those endless 'why won't she go out with me?' rants. A man can only handle so much, you know."
"At least you don't have to hear that now."
He frowned, clutching his chest dramatically again.
"Ouch, Evans. That was a little harsh," he said.
She tilted her head slightly, watching him curiously.
"I'm sorry. And for the record, I don't hate James. He can just be a bit of a prat sometimes."
Sirius snorted and cleared his throat.
"A lot. But you're right, he is a good person. He hasn't been as bad this year, I'll admit."
The smirk on Sirius' face was evident and a slight blush crept onto her cheeks.
"Do you like him?" he asked in an annoying sing-song voice and she rolled her eyes.
"Don't jump to conclusions, Black," she warned. She pointed her finger in his direction before checking the clock on the wall.
"Rather rude, don't you think?" Sirius commented and she poked her tongue out childishly.
"Do you want to do something? I don't have to be back until dinner."
Sirius raised both his eyebrows.
"Are you hitting on me, Evans?"
She rolled her eyes as she pushed herself up from the chair and took the plate and cups over to the sink.
"Only in your dreams, Sirius."
He grinned as he too stood up from his chair and smoothed his hair carefully.
"Well by all means, all aboard the grand tour of my humble abode."
She chuckled as she headed towards the back door.
"I'll go say goodbye and then we'll leave, okay?"
He nodded and the back door slammed shut behind her and he waited while admiring Petunia's painting once more. He'd never known what it was like to have a real home until Hogwarts. Sure, he'd lived in the Noble and Most Ancient House of Black for most of his upbringing, but it was not quite the one he'd desired. It didn't come close enough in the likes of Hogwarts, or the Potter's.
He was saved from thinking about what the Potters might have been doing at this very moment without him when the door opened and Lily walked back in followed by her mother.
"Well it was certainly lovely to meet you, Sirius," Mrs. Evans said extending her hand to shake his and he courteously lifted it to his lips and kissed it.
"The pleasure was all mine, I assure you, Mrs. Evans."
She blushed as Lily rolled her eyes and kissed her mother's cheek.
"I'll see you for dinner," she promised and linked arms with Sirius and dragged him from the room without so much as a second glance.
And so, the first edited chapter ends here.
But alas, don't stress because the next parts will be uploaded next, I assure you.
And then I'll continue to put off my homework and write up a new chapter for all those who are hopeful.
And then I'll actually do my homework.
Much, much love for all those who expressed interest in me continuing!