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My Reflection by Astrid Elisabeth

Format: Novel
Chapters: 55
Word Count: 115,470

Rating: 15+
Warnings: Mild Language, Mild Violence, Scenes of a Mild Sexual Nature, Sensitive Topic/Issue/Theme

Genres: Drama, Romance, Angst
Characters: Dumbledore, Lupin, Sirius, Lily, James, Voldemort
Pairings: James/Lily

First Published: 10/03/2004
Last Chapter: 07/02/2005
Last Updated: 01/01/2012

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Lily Evans felt her leotard hug her curves. Her hands were placed in third position and her feet in fourth. She was standing there, prepared to turn and perform a hopefully triple pirouette in front of her audience. The smile of James Potter was on her mind. After all, it was because of him she was standing on this stage. She hated it, but that was the truth. This is a different James/Lily story with quite a few twists. Hope you like it! Banner by Iced_Cherriez.

Chapter 38: Awkward

Chapter Thirty-eight, Awkward

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For though man has sorrow and grief in his soul,
at once he forgets his dark thoughts and remembers not his troubles.
Such is the holy gift of Terpsichore.
- Hesiod, 7th century BC

I laughed happily as I entered the library the next day, with James grinning next to me. His hand was around me, resting there so naturally you’d think it was born to be there. I scanned the library for Bryn, and eyed him sitting by a table close to the restricted section.

“See you later,” I said to James as we broke apart.

“Sure I can’t come with you?” he asked, looking at me.

“Come on? We’ll never concentrate if you and Bryn will sit there looking like you want to kill each other.”

James shrugged, finding Sirius and Remus reading at a table close by. That is, Sirius didn’t read. He was playing with his parchment roll.

“You there?” I said to Bryn as I sat down across him. He looked emptily out into the air, probably far away in his own thoughts.

“Oh, hello,” he smiled as he saw me. “I didn’t expect you to come so soon!”

“No problem,” I said happily, flipping my charms books open. “Now, tell me what you don’t understand.”

A curve appeared in his forehead as he scanned the book.

“This part right here,” he pointed, looking very tired.

“Oh… that one. I know a very good book to describe that more precisely, just wait a second,” I said interestedly, getting up to get madam Brooks.

When I got back, Bryn looked uninterested and dull, lying on top of his books.

I handed him the book I had got, telling him what page to open it on.

“Is there… anything bothering you?” I said carefully, looking into his tired face.

“No, not at all,” he forced a smile to decorate his lips. “I’m brilliant.”

I narrowed my eyes, placing a hand on my chin.

“You sure? Is it just because charms is so hard, or is it something else?” I asked again.

As he met my eyes once more, I read exactly what I had said in his eyes. Assignment. Irritation…

“Well, I have to admit it came as a surprise seeing you end up with Potter,” he confessed.

“Oh,” I said in an undertone.

“Erm… maybe we should get back to that later…” I said, not meeting his eyes. I pointed at the paragraph in his book, and hoped he would start reading instead of starting this conversation.

He put his hand on top of mine, stealing my look. I extracted my hand from under his, almost as if I was burnt. I felt his gaze holding onto my eyes like there was a force connecting them. I broke the eye-contact, almost feeling scared.

“You’re not frightened of me, are you, Lily?” Bryn said softly.

“Of course not!” I protested, setting up a tense face.

“I think you are.”

‘Am I, really? What is there to be frightened of? Why?’ I whispered to myself, dragging a nervous hand through my hair.

“I thought you were determined not to get together with Potter?” Bryn said irritably.

“What’s it to you?” I snapped, almost a little bit rude.

Bryn leaned back, surveying me with narrowed eyes.

“I care about you, Lily… I only want what’s best for you,” he said just as gently.

“Really? Then why have you avoided me, only daring to take contact last autumn?” I said hardly.

Bryn sighed, almost shrinking by my comment. He rested his elbows on the table, clearly looking for words to express what he was thinking.

“Guilt. Fear. Cowardliness,” he said quietly.

I calmed down, trying to get things straight. I wasn’t sure why, but something was wrong.

“So you’re saying, that you felt guilty for hurting me the way you did. That you were scared I’d fly in your throat and… whatever. And you were a coward, so you didn’t dare to contact me. Is that it?” I said coldly.

“Yes… That’s it. And I really regret that.”

I almost felt my temperature rise.

“At least you could have said you were sorry? We could have stayed friends, didn’t you figure that much? I hate avoiding people. I hate to walk around, carrying old conflicts.”

“I’m sorry.”

‘There it was… The sorry I’ve been waiting for, which should have come months ago.’

“That took a while,” I whispered.

“I know,” Bryn smiled sheepishly. “But I really care about you, Lily. I’ve changed.”

I smiled weakly.

“Why Potter?” Bryn said slowly.

I shook my head. “I fell for him, full stop.”

“That simple? So you just forgot about the kiss he gave you, the one that didn’t mean anything?” he blurted out.

I shivered. Just thinking of that kiss made me feel insecure.

‘No, don’t, Lily. You know how James feels about you. It won’t happen again.’

“We started over,” I said simply. “I believe in second chances.”

Bryn suddenly lightened up. “Does that mean for me too? Can we be friends again?”

I sniggered softly. Would that be a good idea?

“I guess we can,” I said, pointing at his book again. “Now we have to get back to charms work.”

“I just want you to know, you can rely on me, Ok? I’m here for you whenever you want,” he said charmingly.

‘Yeah, whatever…’

“I really appreciate that,” I said, pointing at his book once more.

The whole day had consisted of homework, but I still had more to do. James, Hillary, Sirius and I sat in the common room late that evening, finishing an essay for professor McGonagall. All the teachers had loaded us with work over Christmas, and I was pretty exhausted already.

I smiled as I wrote more paragraphs, thinking about Bryn’s apology. It had somehow lightened my heart, because I felt I could finally start putting that behind me now.

“He apologised,” I suddenly said to James, who sat next to me.

“What? I’m not following,” he said quizzically.

“Bryn Johnson. Apologised for what he did to me last year.”

Hillary let out a sigh, shaking her head slightly.

“He’s still a bad one,” she muttered.

“Come on? He said he was sorry!” I said to her.

“So now what, you’re best friends?” James said bitterly.

I sent him a disappointed look.

“We’re friends, yes, am I not allowed to have him as a friend?”

“Well, he’s a boy, and he was your former boyfriend. Am I not allowed to be at least a little bit concerned?” he continued.

“Why are you fussing over this? Don’t you trust me?” I said irritably.

James leaned closer, hugging me loveably.

“Of course I trust you, but I don’t trust him…”

“You don’t have a problem with me being close to best friends with Sirius and Remus, though?” I pointed out.

“I know they won’t touch you when you’re with me,” James smiled matter-of-factly.

“I have a feeling I went much further with Sirius on Halloween than I ever went with Bryn…” I said evilly.

“Ok, stop that. Now you’re making ugly images pop up in my head,” James sniggered. “But I still don’t like you seeing that crazy Quidditch-player.”

I gave up.

“Ok, but you’re not allowed to beat him up or send him dirty looks or anything because of this,” I sighed.

“I do that already, so technically, nothing will change.”

I scowled, scribbling on with my quill on the parchment.

Hillary just sent me doubtful looks.

“Come on, ballerina! I hate it when you’re being all moody and mad. I like it much, much better when you smiiiiiile…” James moaned.

I rested my head on his shoulder, smiling as he commanded.

“Happy?” I grinned, looking at him with angle eyes.

“Yeah, that’s better,” James laughed, playing with my hair.

Dorothy came over seconds later. She pretended she didn’t see James looking at me like he did. Her hair was perfectly done in a complicated style, probably heavy with hair-spray. Her eyes were glittering with coloured eye-shadow.

“Don’t forget it’s ballet tomorrow,” she smirked at me. “Looking forward to it?”

I looked at her thoughtfully. Was this supposed to make me feel unhappy? Was she somehow hinting to me dreading going back to classes? I must have missed out on something.

“How could I not know? I’m looking forward to it as a child on Christmas Eve!” I smiled. “Aren’t you?”

She didn’t see that coming.

“Well.. of course! I have nothing to be worried about, I’ve practised the exam-exercises every day during the holidays!” she smiled smugly.

“This is starting to look like a smiling competition…” James whispered carefully into my ear.

“How good for you! I’ll see you tomorrow then!” I beamed back again, almost feeling my face going tense from smiling.

She nodded, and walked away. She seemed somewhat irritated.

“Good one, Lily!” Sirius laughed, giving me a high-five.