Lily remained cold and silent for the remainder of the day. She avoided James in the hall and she glared at him if he said so much as a word in her general direction.
“Severus?” Lily sat down next to the Slytherin boy.
Severus looked up from his book and mumbled something. Ever since Severus had walked up to her that day by the swings Lily felt almost compelled to be his friend. He reminded her of the sort of boy who was always excluded and ostracised. When they arrived at Hogwarts no one seemed to want to talk or even try to socialise with him.
“Severus?” Lily persisted.
Severus mumbled something again. “I need to go to the dudgeons.” He stood, shut his book and tucked it under his arm.
James ignored the comment. He bent down and looked at her. There was something about him...something that really aggravated Lily to no end. She tried to see the beauty in others but, obviously, James could already see his and thus didn't need a boost to his ego. “About before...”
“What about before?” Lily stared icily at Potter.
“Well...” James scratched his head nervously. “I wanted to say...what I mean is...”
“I'm sorry. I can't hear you.”
“I-I, um...I'm sorry about before,” James murmured.
“Oh it's not me you should be apologising to,” Lily said stiffly. “It's Severus.”
James blinked. “I'm not saying sorry to Snivellus!”
Lily stood. Her calm manner was slowly disappearing. “Then go try talk up some other red head!” She stormed off. Could she get no peace in this world? Lily made her way up to the Gryfindor common room, hoping to find solitude in the confines of the girl's dormitory. There was only one other person there. It was Marci Feather-claw. She was a nice girl, third year, with straight brown hair, a pretty face and a particular knack at explosive spells. Her text book was lying open on her lap as Lily trudged gloomily up the stairs and into the dorm.
“Hi,” Marci said cheerily.
“Hi,” Lily said.
Marci cocked her head to the side as if she just noticed how gloomy Lily seemed. She began scribbling down notes and didn't say anything more.
Lily flopped back onto her bed and closed her eyes. There was so much she wished was just a dream. So much she wished wasn't real. Like the fact that she was beginning to think that she was developing feelings for that big-headed James. And as her eyes closed she noticed a white lily lying by the side of her pillow.
When Lily woke it was time for dinner. During her sleep Lily had the strangest dream. James was actually apologising to Snape. When Lily had come across the two she couldn't believe her eyes. Sadly, that's when she woke up and realised that James would never do that in real life. The dinner, as usual, was a mountain of food. There were pies and mash potato and chicken and bowls of steamed vegetables. On her first day Lily had wondered why they made so much food when they couldn't possibly finish it all. By the time she reached the Great Hall everyone was seated and the only spare seat was next to a pompous git.
Upon seeing Lily approach the table James stood immediately. Lily was confused and took a step back. But James walked straight past her over to the Slytherin table.
“Oi! Mate! What're you doing?” Sirius called.
James ignored him and kept on walking. He stood before Snape and clenched his fists. “Listen,” James managed through gritted teeth. “I just want you to know that I-I'm sorry.”
Snape frowned. “What-”
James turned on his heels and fled back to his house.
“Are you okay? Did you seriously do what I think you just did?” Sirius laughed.
Remus was looking thoroughly bewildered (Peter was too).
“Yes...” James said. He chucked some carrot onto his plate quite violently. The he stabbed a piece of chicken and glared at it for a while as if it was the cause for world hunger and all things bad.
Lily grinned. Maybe there was some potential to be a good person hidden deep down underneath the stupid, self-centred facade he put on. She leaned over and placed a gentle kiss on James' cheek. “That was a very brave thing you did just then.”
Sirius raised an eyebrow.
Remus was looking even more bewildered.
“Oh and, those lilies were a nice thought,” Lily said.
James opened and closed his mouth like a fish. He couldn't believe it. His lily-flower had actually kissed his cheek!
Lily took a bite out of her bean. “What's wrong? Cat-got-your-tongue?” she smiled.