A/N: Hi. I'm really sorry about this chapter. I'm not very happy with it to be honest, but it has been almost a month since I updated, so I thought it would be best just to update the story :) enjoy and please review :)
Over the next few days leading up to New Years and after our reconciliation, I found myself spending a lot of time with James. I kept trying to work up the courage to tell him I was pregnant, but as soon as the words where about to pass my lips, I would chicken out.
Lily's words were echoing around my head. I knew I only had less than two weeks until my fifteen week scan, and I knew I had to James by then.
The Potter's were planning a New Year's ball, an event of epic proportions. Almost everyone in the Ministry of Magic had been invited, as Harry was head of the Auror department, not to mention everyone's hero.
The Weasley's were invited too, of course, due to their celebrity status, as well as the fact Ron and Hermione were both dedicated members of the Ministry.
The ball was going to be held in the Potter's mansion, and Rose had insisted on going dress shopping for the event, even though she had more than enough evening dresses as her parents always dragged her along to Ministry events such as this.
She announced we would be spending the day in Diagon Alley, and possibly muggle London, over breakfast which we were sharing with the Potter children, as well as Hugo and her parents.
"Uh... we are?" I asked, raising one eyebrow. James and Albus chuckled at me and Rose gave them both her famous death glare, which shut them up immediately.
"Yup!" She popped the 'P' and took a bite from the buttered sluce of toast on her plate.
"Why?" I moaned.
"The Potter's ball is tomorrow, and as much as I know you would like to go in tracksuit bottoms, a ratty t-shirt and no makeup, it simply won't be acceptable!" She lectured, and I rolled my eyes at her.
Ron smiled at me sympathetically and I sighed. "Can Lily come?" I asked, nodding at Lily who was sitting between her two brothers.
"Of course! And we're meeting Ruby, too, in twenty minutes, so I suggest you get dressed." Rose said.
I groaned again. "You're kidding right? Ruby is, like, a hundred times worse than you when it comes to shopping!" I cried, much to James' amusement.
I pointed my toast threateningly at him. "You want to laugh again?" I asked menacingly, narrowing my eyes.
He bit his lip to hold back laughter (Oh Merlin, his lips... ) "No, Ma'am." He muttered solemnly.
Twenty minutes later I dashed downstairs after changing from my pyjama shorts and huge t-shirt into a pair of jeans and a light blue button down shirt.
I ignored the dirty look Rose gave me as she examined her watch. One at a time, each of us took a handful of floo powder, threw it into the fireplace and stepped into the green flames
A few hours later, and we are heading into our tenth dress shop in a quest to find 'the one' as Ruby called it.
div>We had been chatting about random topics all morning, but the most interesting of all of them was the fact Lily had developed a crush on someone at Hogwarts.
"Come on! Just tell us who it is!" Ruby demanded as the flicked through a rack of dresses.
Rose nodded as she held up a long pink dress to the light to get a closer look. She grimaced and put it back on the rack quickly.
I was sitting on a plush red stool, watching Ruby flick through the dresses with such speed her hands almost blurred. Rose was doing the same, but she was much slower, and stopped every so often to give a dress closer inspection.
Lily was walking around the large shop, but she didn't seem to be paying much attention to any dresses, as she was blushing deeply and staring very hard at the floor.
"You don't know him.'' Lily muttered, almost incoherently, and Ruby snorted.
"You've already told us he goes to Hogwarts. We go to Hogwarts! So, obviously, we do know him." Rose pointed out, and picked up a green floor-length gown and gave it a smile. She draped it over her arm but still continued to look through the racks.
"I don't want to tell you until he makes a move first. You lot would probably hold him at wand-point and force him to." Lily sighed, and reached up to examine a grey purse covered in studs. I thought it was hideous but Lily seemed to like it.†
"What do you mean, make a move?" Ruby asked, waggling her eyebrows suggestively. Rose and I both frowned, and Lily blushed.
"Don't you even think about it, young lady! You're only fourteen!" Rose said while she strutted to the back of the shop where there was a small platform surrounded by mirrors, a few chairs and two little dressing rooms off to the side.
I noticed Rose had three dresses in her arms as she headed for one of the changing rooms.
"Of course not! I have no intention of giving up my virginity anytime soon." Lily claimed, giving me a gentle smile.
I smirked at her. "Good idea. All... that does is create trouble"
Ruby nodded knowingly and I noticed she had two dresses in her arms. "Violet's right. You don't want to lose it to the wrong person, or before you're ready."
I rolled my eyes. "Could you be anymore hypocritical right now?" I smirked as Lily raise her eyebrows.
"How is she being hypocritical?" Lily asked me, before turning to Ruby. "Who did you lose yours to, Rubes?"
Ruby mumbled something and looked away from us.
"Tommy Browne!" I exclaimed and I rejoiced when I saw Ruby squirm.
"I was young, okay?! I didn't know any better!" Ruby insisted and she ran a hand through her shoulder-length blonde hair. Lily squealed, "Tommy Browne? As in head boy? With the glasses and the acne?"†
"Yes!" I laughed along, and Ruby started turning quite purple in the face.
"Give it a rest, Violet! We can't all lose our virginity to celebrities!" Ruby spit out. I felt my stomach drop when I realised where this conversation was headed.
Lily knew I only did it once. She knew whoever I lost my virginity to was my baby's father.
"Ruby, don't you dare say anything more!" I shouted, earning myself a look of disgust from the lady behind the cashier's desk.
Ruby grinned evilly, realising she had all the power in this conversation now. "Oh really? Are you not proud to have lost your virginity to James Potter?" She exclaimed.
I stood up quickly and grabbed a dress of the rack without looking at the size, colour or price and dashed with it straight into the only other spare changing room and quickly shut the door before Lily could say anything.
Shit. Now Lily knew everything.
I took a minute to slow my erratic breathing and then looked at the dress in my hand. It was a horrid brown colour, but it was my size, so I struggled to pull it on in a desperate attempt to waste more time.
I looked at myself in the floor-length mirror in the small changing room and cringed. The colour looked even worse when I was wearing it. The style of the dress was alright though, it criss-crossed over my chest and then the skirt fell down to my feet.
I was delaying going back out and facing Lily, so I stayed in the small room for much longer than was needed, staring at my reflection, turning from side to side checking to see if there was any sign of a pregnancy bump yet. It was small, but it was there.
I heard a gentle knock on the door and I felt my heart drop. "Um... occupied!" I called out, but Lily ignored me. "Violet Beale, you let me in there right now!" She called impatiently.
I bit my lip and sighed. I had to face Lily at some point. So I gently unlocked the door. As soon as Lily heard the click, she burst into the room like a tornado. She waited for me to shut the door again, before whispering loudly, "It's James'?!"
I looked down at the floor, ashamed. "Yes." I whispered. Lily covered her mouth with her hand. "No way!" She whispered back.
I nodded, still not looking at her. "I knew something happened between you two!" I cringed and looked up at her, finally meeting her eyes. "Obviously." I sighed, gesturing towards my stomach.
"Wow. I just... well, wow. I can't believe... wow!" She muttered to me.
"Wow. Yeah, I get it, Lils" I sighed. "Look, I understand if you hate me right now, but-" I began quietly, but Lily looked taken aback and interrupted me.
"Why would I hate you? If anything, I love you more! You're carrying my niece slash nephew in there!"†
She smiled at me before going silent for a moment, lost in thought, before she looked at me again.
"You have to tell him though, Violet. He's my brother and he deserves to know." I sighed at her words. I knew she was right. "I know. I'm going to tell him tomorrow."
"At the ball?" Lily asked and I nodded. "Promise?" She whispered and I smiled at her.
We exited the room together to see Ruby was missing, obviously trying on a dress in the other changing room, and Rose was standing on the platform inspecting herself in a pretty forest green dress with thick straps.
A thought struck me and I stopped walking.
"What?" She asked and Rose looked up at us, realising we had entered the room. She smiled and did a turn on the platform. "What do you think?" She inquired as the long dress fanned out around her.
Lily and I smiled. "Beautiful." I complimented and then pulled Lily to me. "Did she hear?" I hissed in her ear and she shook her head.
I sagged with relief and patted Lily's shoulder. Ruby then entered the room in a yellow flowy gown and looked at me. She mouthed 'sorry' and I shrugged my shoulders as if to say, 'no big deal.'
Ruby gasped when she saw Rose. "You found the one!" She squealed and Rose smiled back at her.†
Ruby walked over to me and gave me a big hug and I smiled. "Just don't tell anyone else, okay?" I joked and she rolled her eyes. "Back at you. Never say the words Tommy Browne ever again."
Ruby looked me up and down and pursed her lips. I sighed. "I look like a shit, don't I?" I asked seriously and all three girls burst out laughing.
Rose stepped down from the platform and straightened out her dress. "Yeah, love," She smiled. "You do." Making Ruby and Lily laughed harder.
The next day I woke up unusually late in the morning. Normally I was a very early riser, so I was shocked when I saw the time on the alarm clock next to my bed in the Weasley house.
I pushed myself out of my comfortable bed and stretched my arms up towards the ceiling, stretching my entire body and moaned in satisfaction. My body ached after the torture (er... I mean shopping) yesterday.
After we all found dresses (Which took until late evening since I refused all the pink frilly gowns Ruby tried to force on me) I was asleep on my feet and just accepted whatever random dress Rose picked out.
We had also gotten our nails done. Rose had gotten a French manicure, as did I, but Ruby got bright red to match her dress, and Lily got a cute pearly-pink colour. I quickly inspected my nails as I stretched my arms out in front of me and yawned widely. Thankfully, they all seemed to be intact.
I slowly rose to my feet and walked quickly onto the corridor and down the staircase. I followed the hall to the kitchen which was situated to the back of the house, and grabbed a box of cereal from one of the shelves and poured it absent-mindedly into a bowl.
I sat down at the table and began to chew on the cornflakes, when I noticed there were other people at the table.
Ginny and Harry were looking at me in amusement and I realised I must look terrible. I could only imagine the haystack-y excuse for hair plastered on my head, desperately in need of a wash, as well as sleep-filled eyes, no makeup, pale face and over-sized Chudley Cannons t-shirt and ratty pyjama shorts.†
Blushing, I smiled at them. "Morning." I nodded at them and they smiled.
"Looking well, this morning, Beale!" I heard from behind me and turned around to see James standing in the doorway of the kitchen. His hair was wind-swept, as if her had been flying on his broom. He looked so gorgeous...
I mentally slapped some sense into myself and glowered at him. "Can't say the same for you, Potter." I spat at him and he chuckled. I chewed away at my cereal and James disappeared out the door again. I was making small talk with Harry, Ginny and Hermione (who was standing in the kitchen the whole time, but I never noticed.) When Rose and Ruby entered the room smiling happily.
"Ruby?" I asked, confused. "What are you doing here?" She rolled her eyes at me.
To get ready for the ball, duh!" She exclaimed as if it were obvious. My brow furrowed even more in confusion. "But it doesn't start for another eight hours..." I pointed out.
"Oh my Merlin, you're right!" Ruby exclaimed and I smiled happily at the chance to go back to bed, when Ruby spoke again. "We'd better hurry if we want to be ready on time!"
I spit out a mouthful of cereal and looked up at Ruby and Rose incredulously. "Surely you can't be serious?" I asked Ruby who simply nodded.
"Come on, then!" Ruby said as she pulled me up from my seat. I followed her willingly up the stairs and into Rose's room, which was across the corridor from mine. Rose went and turned on the shower in her en suite bathroom and Ruby sat me down on the bed and started dragging a brush through my knotted hair.
A few minutes later, sighing in defeat, Ruby bundled several towels in my arms and pushed me towards the running shower.
Locking the door behind me, Ruby called to me through the door, "Don't even try and come out until your hair is back to normal!" and I heard Rose laugh along with her.
I hate them both.
Eight hours later and believe it or not, but we were running late.
Rose was standingn by the bedroom door, ready to go, but Ruby and I were frantic, running around the room putting finishing touches on our hair, looking for a shoe, a purse or a perfume bottle.
Rose looked totally elegant. Her forest green dress is so simple yet so beautiful. The straps were thick, running over her shoulder and meet in the middle under her bust. The dress was backless, showing off her pale skin. It fell simply down to her feet, which were encased in silver high heels. Her jewellery and bag were both silver too. Green and silver... I wonder who she's trying to impress?
Her normally frizzy hair has been tamed and is now falling in soft waves down to the middle of her back. She really looked gorgeous.
Ruby stood up from her previous position of her hands and knees on the floor looking underneath the bed for her purse, which she was now holding triumphantly in the air.
She straightened out her strapless, fire-engine red dress. She truly looked stunning. The kind of stunning that broke guy's necks. Her dress sparkled in the light and had a slit running up the right side, showing off a lot of her leg. Her blonde hair was pulled up into a fashionable bun.†
She smacked her bright red lips together as she examined herself in the mirror. "We scrub up well, if I do say so myself." She boasted.
I slipped my feet into the navy platform stilettos I had borrowed from Ruby that matched the dress that Rose had picked out for me. When I first got a proper chance to examine the dress, I was actually surprised that I liked it.
It was a deep navy, but in the right light it almost looked purple. It had a sweetheart neckline and really thin straps that were dotted subtly with small rhinestones. The material cinched in under my bust and flowed down gracefully, covering my small bump perfectly. The material was light and floated around me when I walked.†
By the time Rose had done my hair and makeup, I knew by the end of the night my I would be hot, uncomfortable and my feet would be killing me.†
However, I knew that sore feet would be the least of my worries for tonight.†
I felt my stomach clench uncomfortably at the thought of what I had to do. The nerves where kicking in, and I wasn't sure if I would actually be able to tell James, even though I knew I had to.
The three of us made our way down the stairs to Ron and Hugo who were waiting for us patiently by the door. Ron gave Rose a quick hug and murmured something about her growing up so fast.
Ruby †and I stepped down the final step into the large foyer and Hugo stared at both of us with wide eyes. After a few moments, Rose hit him over his head with her silver clutch and hissed "Put your tongue back in your mouth!" to which Hugo snapped out of his trance and stammered, "You guys look... nice."†
Ruby beamed at him and I thanked him quickly. I could tell he was trying extremely hard to act cool, there was no denying the pink hue spreading over his freckled cheeks. I knew his reaction was mainly for Ruby and her bomb-shell dress.
We all lined up by the door as we waited for Hermione to join us. Ron was clicking his tongue and looking at his watch every few seconds. Ron walked to the bottom of the stairs and called up, "'Mione, love? We're already running late!"
Hermione suddenly appeared at the top of the stairs and called, "Alright, alright, I'm coming." as she descended the staircase. Ron was extremely quiet. "What?" Hermione demanded and Ron broke out into a smile. "You look gorgeous, love."
Ruby and I sighed "Aww" in unison, but Hugo and Rose both pretended to gag as Ron wrapped his arms around Hermione. It was true, though, she did look gorgeous.†
I was so used to seeing Hermione in her Ministry robes or in a blouse and pants. Her dress was a beautiful golden colour, and was very simple, but it complimented her brown hair, which tonight was pulled into a sleek updo.
Hermione smiled but batted Ron away and looked at each of us. "You all look wonderful." She complimented. We all thanked her and got ready to apparate.
When we had all arrived safely, we made our way up to the large gates of the Potter mansion. There were several people walking in the same direction. The lights of the party were bright up ahead and the air was filled of talking people and clinking glasses.†
We made our way into the house and followed the party noises to a set of large doors. As we stepped into the ballroom, I looked up in awe. The ceiling was a perfect depiction of the night sky, just like the great hall at Hogwarts.†
Hermione noticed my staring and smiled. "It reminded Harry of Hogwarts." She whispered.
I nodded, totally understanding. The thought of leaving Hogwarts broke my heart, and I would do anything to be reminded of it once I left.
The ballroom was a perfect circle, with round tables dotted around the edge of the room. The middle of the floor had been cleared for dancing, and a small stage was placed at the top of the room, were currently a group of men in purple tuxedos were setting up instruments.
As we all took our seats at our assigned table. I immediately began scanning the room for James.
After quite a while, I was beginning to lose hope. Lily burst into the room and her eyes darted around before settling on our table, and she skipped over to us.
She was looking very cute in a white dress with a light pink belt. Her red hair was loose and free and swinging with every step she took. She came to a stop behind Hugo's chair and gave him a pointed look. Hugo sighed, knowing her couldn't win a fight with Lily, and stood up reluctantly. Lily grinned triumphantly and threw herself down in his chair. He walked away towards another table, apparently spotting someone he knew.
Lily looked at me pointedly. "Have you seen James yet, Vi?" She prodded. I shook my head and pretended to pick at a piece of invisible lint on my dress. Rose looked between the two of us and shrugged. "Have you seen Al?" She asked Lily.
Lily nodded. "He and Scorpius were making their way down here last time I saw them. Scorpius seemed to be looking forward to it, though." She smirked at us. I held back laughter and Ruby snorted into her wine glass. Rose glared at all of us. "Do you have a problem?" Rose demanded.
We all shook our heads furiously, but didn't look at each other, knowing we would burst out laughing at each other's expressions. My laughter faded instantly when a familiar raven-haired man walked into the room.
My stomach twisted into knots and I looked at Lily. She gave me a sympathetic look, but cocked her head towards James, indicating I should talk to him.
I scrunched my eyes closed and took a deep breath. My stomach was full of nervous butterflies, which weren't helped by how handsome James looked in his black dress robes. Even his shirt was black. He still stood by the door surveying the room, so I swallowed hard and just decided to do it.
I stood up suddenly, and all I eyes turned to me. I smiled nervously at the table, and stammered, "I'll be right back."
Rose looked at me skeptically but nodded. Ruby seemed too absorbed in her wine glass to pay much heed to what I was doing. Lily looked almost as nervous as I did, and gave me a encouraging nod.
I smiled gratefully at her and made my way across the room to James Sirius Potter.