The next morning Lily awoke amongst tangled sheets and quickly fetched her clothes from the floor. She glanced back at James who looked so peaceful in his sleep; a section of his hair had fallen over his eyes and his mouth was slightly open with a vague, clumsy smile. Lily had a brisk shower and picked out a green dress from her bag that had been tossed to the corner of the room when she arrived. She sat out on the balcony, watching the river slowly flowing downstream, recalling the previous night; her cheeks grew red at the memory. The honeymoon was going perfectly. She felt James’ arms wrap around her waist and again she though of how their moment in bed.
“Who’s the sleepy head now?” She asked playfully.
“Good to see you’re dressed for the day!” James responded cheerfully, next minute the wind was blowing her hair into her face so she couldn’t really see what was happening. When the wind had settled, Lily brushed the hair away from her eyes and realised that they were standing on the very tip of the Eiffel Tower, over looking what seemed to be the whole of Paris. She took a step back in fear of the height with James by her side for steadiness.
“Happy Birthday!” He whispered in her ear. Lily looked at him with a startled expression but then soon realised that today was her birthday, the whole trip had taken her mind off of the thought completely.
“So I got you a gift.” He searched his pockets and pulled out a small package. Lilly tore off the silver wrapping and found a small, velvet box inside. As she opened it slowly, she saw a glint from the reflection of the sun, it was a pretty charm bracelet with little symbols hanging from the chain.
There was a heart, a sun, the Eiffel Tower, a flower, an owl and the letter L. “It’s beautiful!” She marvelled, admiring the detail.
“I thought you might like it!” James said proudly.
“You really know how to charm a girl,” Lily laughed, “No pun intended.”
“But there is one thing missing.” He pulled her towards him and kissed her softly, his grip firm. They stood there together in an embrace and it was the most peace Lily had felt.
“So can we get down now please?” She asked when she began feeling vertigo.
“Don’t you want to explore the Eiffel Tower?” He asked with a hint of disappointment in his voice. His childlike excitement had deflated and Lily knew that if this were up to Sirius, they would be bungee jumping off and doing all sorts of crazy stuff. “I’m sorry but I’m just not interested in heights. But I absolutely loved the thought.” She kissed him again and he relaxed.
They compromised by taking the stars down to ground level so James could have a peek at every floor. “Well I think we have explored the Eiffel Tower pretty well now, why didn’t you just apparate us down?” Lily asked when she began feeling exhausted from the workout.
“Because people would notice.” He replied.
Once they finally reached the bottom, they walked down a main road and watched people passing by on scooters and tiny cars. “How about we go over there.” Lily suggested, indicating towards a comic artist.
“You really want someone to draw a picture of you with a big head?” He asked sarcastically.
“It will be fun!” She persisted. James gave in and asked for a double portrait.
Lily was next in line so she took a seat on a worn stool opposite the short man and sat as still as she could. It was funny how when she tried to be still, she felt as though she was swaying which she doubted would have been of any help to the French artist.
When he was finished Lily sighed and relaxed in the stool. The man had drawn her in front of the Eiffel Tower wearing a French beret and carrying a basket of breads and wines with grape bunches spilling over the sides. She laughed a little and waited patiently for James’ portrait to be done.
When the man was once again finished, James stepped aside to take a look. He was a super hero with a long cape falling down to his ankles; a city with tall buildings was burning down in flames in the background.
“My hero!” Lily cried, teasing him.
“Let’s go get yours framed.” He said, steering away from the subject.
“What about yours?” She asked, “I think it looks awesome!”
James grunted and pulled me towards a small store. As they were about to pay for both of the framed pieces, James rummaged through his pockets in search of some loose change. “Shoot!” He said under his breath, “I don’t have any muggle money left!”
“What are you going to do?” Lily asked, giving the lady at the cash register a nervous sideways glance. “Well I wasn’t planning on this happening during our trip but…” He stopped in midsentence, and then they were standing in a narrow alleyway, facing a dump.
“Will you please stop doing that!” Lily asked irritably, “I’m going to start getting panic attacks.”
“Sorry,” He said, “It’s just the fastest way to get around.” James began rummaging through the garbage in search of something then found a phone and satrted dialling a number. Next minute, a large oak door appeared on the brick wall behind them and a very tall man opens it and walks out, “Good morning.” He said in a low, gruff voice, “My name is Deon, what would you like today?” He asked with a bored French tone.
“I would like to exchange one hundred galleons for 90 Euro please.” James asked, counting with his fingers to make sure he got the currency conversion correct. Deon exchanged money from under his coat, handed it to James and left back through the door. He closed it with a loud thud before it disappeared in the blink on an eye.