This Lily Evans.
(( OOC: Written by: carpetheday ))
Because your James & Lily threads always make my heart feel way too many things.
(Also because after an election night like this we all deserve to feel a little Jily love)
James had always been an early riser. Ever since he was a young child he had memories of waking when the sun had barely come over the horizon. He would throw his sheets to the ground, his feet hitting the carpet so fast he almost fell down the stairs as he flung himself along the banister.
But these morning, these mornings were different. He would stretch his toes, curve his back and roll his shoulders into the mattress. He could feel the white sheet of their bed draped causally over him, the sun pouring through the white curtains warming his skin and the faintest of summer breezes wafting through the room. He would let his eyes flutter open and without a thought let his head drop to the side.
When he was a boy he had loved rising early because no one else was awake and he could do whatever he pleased. He could climb on the counter and grab the sugary cereal his mum kept on the top shelf. He could ride his broom through the kitchen and into the living room. But as a young man, he had an entirely new reason for wanting to wake with the sun.
He blinked the sun and sleep from his eyes. Her face was directed towards him and they were so close he didn’t even need his glasses to see her. Her fiery mane of hair was draped across their white pillowcases, her pale freckled back was exposed as she lay comfortably snoring on her stomach and her arms were curved under the pillow that she had nuzzled into her face.
Being in love with Lily Evans since he was eleven years old was nothing like being in love with Lily Potter.
Hogwarts Lily Evans was a mystery from the moment he saw her with that awe-stricken look on her face and those wide emerald eyes. He had wanted to know her immediately. She was a whirlwind of chaos, an overbearing know-it-all, a painstakingly witty firecracker. And still her smile was so full of sunshine and her heart a garden full of the brightest flowers. He remembered watching her in class with her prim and proper uniform, her perfectly straightened posture, her precise wand movements. He remembered thinking that this was the one, this was his soulmate. But he really had no idea at the time that that magnetic feeling in his gut, the one that would eventually pull them together, was so much more than the faint crush on the beautiful redhead across the classroom.
When she had become the future Mrs. Potter that crush felt so different. He finally realized she was not a mystery at all. No matter how much she remained a chaotic, dictatorial firecracker; she somehow became the changing of the leaves when Autumn ran rampant through the Forbidden Forest and the way mugs of hot chocolate warm your frostbitten fingers. This Lily Evans was as real as she was ethereal. She sat across from him with her legs over the arm of the squishiest armchair in the common room and laughed so hard at his friend’s jokes that her smile took up her whole face. This Lily Evans fell asleep in the Heads office with a quill in her hand and drool dripping down her cheek. This Lily Evans still screamed at him until her face was red and her hair was practically flaming and his chest was bruised from where her finger slammed into it. This Lily Evans caught eyes with him from across the corridor when he was speaking with another girl and her eyes would narrow, her eyebrow would kink, her jaw would grit.
That was when he knew what it meant.
That was when he knew this woman wasn’t just some beautiful conundrum that he had made up in his head to be that way. She was someone who could make his heart race, who could throw his witty comebacks right in his face, who could take one look at him and just know something was wrong. This Lily was one of his best friends, someone who in spite of everything could still keep him on his toes.
And because of that, she was someone who he wanted to share everything with.
But it wasn’t until their wedding day that he realized again he hadn’t figured it out after all. There was so much more.
When he had looked up from fumbling with his tie his entire body froze in its place next to Sirius and his lungs emptied of air. She was walking towards him arm in arm with her father. Her hips swaying ever so slightly, her veil flowing gracefully behind her with the wind. The music was playing but his heart was thumping so loudly he could barely hear it. Her forest green eyes were gazing into him and the way her lips curved into a smirk, the way her eyebrow kinked at his open mouth, he realized it.
It was no longer her mystery that made his heart pound, no longer the chase, no longer the idea that she was the girl of his dreams. It was that he could look at her in the morning when her hair was unkempt, dry toothpaste stuck to her chin, inhaling a fresh mug of coffee in the middle of their kitchen and his heart would still pound like this.
That’s how he knew what that magnetic feeling meant.
Or so he thought.
The Mrs. Potter version of Lily Evans, the woman before him now, continued everyday to show him how little he knew. This woman lying next to him, lying so peacefully in their bedroom on a slow summer morning was the woman who when he had asked on bended knee to wear his mother’s ring practically burst. She was concerned and confused and suddenly her voice raised. His heart was in his throat because he couldn’t imagine not having this. And then she froze in her pacing and her voice rang, “But … I-I really want to. Yes.”
And he didn’t think his heart could swell so large as he watched her eyes well with tears, as he slid the ring onto her finger.
That was until this woman had, only ten months ago, given him the greatest gift he could ever have asked for, Harry. The smallest bundle of black hair tufts and pudgy arms he had ever seen.
This Lily Evans was still fireworks, still a thunderstorm in May, still a dictatorial powerhouse. She could scream and yell and kick up her heels. But she was everything he wanted. For better or for worse. She was still it.
So when he woke up that morning with the sun and turned his head over just like he did every morning; he couldn’t help but catch his breath. He had never dreamed that he could be so loved, that he could love so fiercely, that his heart could swell so immensely. But here he was with his best friends and his little boy and his wife. Prophecy or not this was exactly where he belonged. This is where he was meant to be and he was going to fight like hell to protect this because Lily deserved that much, deserved to see her little one grow. And Harry deserved to have his mum lick her thumb to wipe dirt off his cheek, a mum who would wipe his tears and kiss his scraped knees. He deserved that.
And when her emerald eyes flickered open and the corner of her lip quirked upward his heart thudded loudly in his chest just like it had on their wedding day James couldn’t help but melt, “You know Evans, I could watch a million sunrises and still never see one quite as beautiful as your eyes slowly opening in the morning.”
The corner of her eyebrow lifted ever so slightly as she blinked the sleep from her eyes, “Merlin you’re cheesy in the mornings. And that’s Potter to you, love.”