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 “Your move Remus,” James murmured.

 


The pair were playing wizard chess and James was losing badly. Lily was at his shoulder and teasing him about his obvious lack of skills in that department at least.
 

“Checkmate James.”


 


Remus lay back, obviously bored by his friend’s lack of competition. James kicked the board in frustration and his pieces yelled and screamed as they were sent flying. Lily giggled and James shot her a look somewhere between annoyed and loving. Jake and Sirius came in the Common Room at that point and signalled to the boys. Lily stuck up an eyebrow as James kissed her goodbye. It was eight, almost curfew. 


 


“Where are you lot going?” she asked, inquisitively.


 


The boys froze in their tracks. James looked guiltily back at her then slipped in beside her.


 


“Lily, baby, you know how I promised I wouldn’t prank you now that we’re going out and you wouldn’t ask questions about my work?”


 


“Yes…” Lily said, dissatisfied with his answer.


 


“This is one of those times.”


 


James kissed her again and followed the others out the room. Extremely suspicious now, Lily waited a few minutes then slipped out after them. 


 


The boys moved quickly but securely. James and Remus went ahead under the cloak to check the coast was clear then Sirius and Jake would follow up. The four boys had to be careful on several occasions, Remus and James found themselves hastily edging away as the caretaker seemed to sniff them out. Sirius and Jake had it slightly harder. They were forced to dive for cover and pray more than once and utilise the secret passages to their full advantage. This made it difficult for Lily to keep up and she almost lost them several times. She soon realised where they were heading. The Great Hall. She groaned inwardly. It was the end of February, nearly two weeks after the Quidditch match against Slytherin and the men in green had done nothing to retaliate. It looked as if the feud was quietening down. So why were the four idiots going to antagonise it? Stupid question. They were boys. Their boys. They never did anything sensible. Just as the four were about to head into the Great Hall, Lily was about to stop them when she heard footsteps. She dived under the staircase and peeked out. The boys had dropped the cloak and were about to make their way into the Hall. They were going to be seen by whoever was coming…


 


Hayley lay back, thinking of all the things she’d been through this past year. Maybe being pregnant, having a child with the man she loved wouldn’t be such a bad thing. It was bound to be difficult and James would kill her if he found out but Jake would always be there and this could be just what the pair needed. Jake had always cared for her and he’d been the best person she’d ever met. They were in love and they would be in love forever. Through thick and thin. They would be out of school with NEWTs under their belt by the time their child was born so they didn’t really need to worry about money or anything like that, especially since all the galleons his father had owned were Jake’s now. They would probably need it, chances were her parents would disown her for this. Hayley heard a sigh from next to her and spun round to look at Amelia. Hope was down in the common room and Lily had wandered off so it was just the two of them alone in their dorm, lying on their beds. Amelia looked slightly downhearted and Hayley called out to her.


 


“What’s up?” she asked, glancing across.


 


“Same as you,” Amelia replied bluntly. 


 


“What do you mean?” Hayley said, confused.


 


“I’m pregnant you idiot, just like you,” Amelia snapped slightly. “Sorry, Hayley, I’m just going through a lot right now.”


 


“Yeah well so am I,” Hayley retorted. “We’re both in the same situation.”


 


“No. We’re not.” Amelia’s voice cut through the darkness with a hostile edge but at the same time Hayley knew she was fighting back tears. “You’ve got Jake, he’s an amazing boyfriend and he’ll be the perfect father to your baby. Plus you’ve got a family to love and support you. My family wouldn’t notice if I dropped off the face of the earth and I can’t possibly rely on Sirius for this!”


 


“Sirius might just be more mature than you’re giving him credit for. And besides, you’ve still got Jake and his family,” Hayley said gently.


 


“No. That’s the one thing I could never ask of Jake. He’s my best friend but I’m not going to let him waste his life looking after my child when he has one of his own to take care of!”


 


“Amy, you’ve always got us. Me and Jake. Whatever happens, we’re here. Our kids can grow up together, share their families. It’ll be perfect. You, me, Jake, Sirius, the four of us.”


 


Amelia seemed to be battling internally for a few moments as Hayley watched on concerned. Amelia opened her mouth to say something but the door opened and Hope came in, staggering slightly from tiredness.


 


“Night guys,” she mumbled before hitting her bed like a sack of potatoes and falling asleep. Amelia turned away from Hayley and tried to sleep herself but in truth, both girls just lay there, unable to let sleep take a hold of them.


 


James turned as the footsteps grew nearer. He reached for the cloak but stopped as he saw who it was. The Slytherins. Snape, Rosier, Malfoy, Dolohov, Nott, Avery, Crabbe, Goyle and several others he didn’t recognise. He grimaced and turned to face them as they advanced. There were too many of them to fight and they all had their wands out.


 


“Nox,” James muttered, as the others also put out their wands. In the brief seconds it took for the Slytherins to fill the room with light, James and Sirius were under the cloak and all four boys were running for their lives. 


 


“Petrificus Totalus!” Rosier cried.


 


His spell hit Jake, who fell to the ground. All but three Slytherins moved forward swiftly to see who their prey was. Triumphant, Rosier and Dolohov stayed behind to keep an eye on him whilst the others advanced. The stairs were covered and the doors to the grounds were locked and bolted firmly. Sirius’ foot slipped from under the cloak and Snape managed to use Incarcerous to grab it. Sirius was dragged back as James belted into the Great Hall. Crabbe and Goyle stood over him, grinning through their ugly mouths as the final four advanced.


 


Lily could hardly watch as the Slytherins moved into the Great Hall. Every fibre in her body was telling her to go and help Jake, who was nearby and being kicked, stunned and cursed by Rosier and Dolohov, a nasty pair at the best of times, but she couldn’t. She just sat, perched in her hiding place, too terrified to make a move. And James would be next if she didn’t act.


 


Remus could hardly breathe as they approached. James was safe under the cloak but he was a sitting duck, hidden under one of the main tables. The footsteps approaching were getting louder and Remus could see a foot right next to his hiding place. He held his breath, praying for them to move. Then there was a chuckle and someone bent down. Remus fired a spell but it was blocked and then the last thing he felt before passing out was the stinging jinx blasting into the side of his face.


 


James lay pressed on top of the Ravenclaw table, cloak covering him, trying desperately hard not to make a sound. He watched as Avery and Nott dragged away Remus, who had taken a nasty stinging jinx to his face. Lucius Malfoy and Severus Snape. Surely he could take them. James wasn’t about to lie here, hiding from his two worst enemies as they tortured his friends was he? Damn right he wasn’t. James whipped the cloak off him and as he did so, sent Malfoy flying off his feet with a loud cry of “Stupefy!”


 


“Expelliarmus!” Snape roared.


 


James’ wand flew from his grasp. Helpless, he held his hands up in a mock surrender as Snape walked over and punched him straight in the nose.


 


The four boys were lined up and as Lily watched, Snape walked over and stamped on each boy several times.


 


“What should we do with them boys?” Snape roared.


 


“Kill them,” someone shouted. Lily’s heart skipped several beats.


 


“Don’t be stupid. We just need to make sure they never do anything to us again,” Snape replied. “I think what we did to Kingston with maybe a few more permanent scars should do the trick. Let’s start with the great Mr James Potter, shall we?”


 


That was enough for Lily. She leapt out of her hiding place and dived on top of James, who was unconscious, shielding him from Snape and the others. Several Slytherins tried to raise their wands but Snape motioned for them to lower them.


 


“Lily, what a surprise. I’m sorry you have to see me like this,” Snape said softly.


 


“Please Sev, don’t do this,” Lily said quietly. Her eyes were overflowing with tears as she caressed James’ face. “I won’t let you hurt James.”


 


“What’re you going to do mudblood?” Rosier hissed. Lily went pink and spat at him. Snape pushed Rosier back and faced Lily who was focusing on James. 


 


“Lily, please listen to me. You and me, we can be together. Just leave Potter and we can be happy, the Dark Lord will allow it.”


 


“Dark Lord? Would you listen to yourself Sev?” Lily snarled. “I can’t believe this is who you are now. So guess what? I love James Potter with all my heart and he’s a million times the man you’ll ever be. So I think you can tell the Dark Lord to suck your dick, Snivellus!”


 
 

A tear ran down Snape’s cheek as Lily’s words penetrated his soul. 


 


“Fine bitch, if I can’t have you, Potter’s not getting the satisfaction. Crucio!”


 


Lily screamed in pain as the curse hit her. Every part of her body felt like it was ripping apart as Snape tortured her. She could barely see but then she felt something new. A warmth. James’ lips against hers.


 


“Avada…” Snape began.


 


“Levicorpus!” James bellowed, lifting Snape off his feet and then sending him crashing back into his friends. He stood, holding onto Lily with all his love, glaring at the Slytherins with a burning hatred. He released the spells holding the others and one by one the Marauders stood. The Slytherins backed off, desperately scrambling for their dorm. Only when the last one was out of sight did James finally relax, still holding Lily in his arms. 


 


“I love you Lily Evans.”


 


“I love you, James Potter.”


 


That was it. The end of the feud. Well the end in as much as the Gryffindors were done fighting. Hayley, Lily and Amelia had combined forces to ban the boys from doing anymore to fight Snape and his lot. February turned into March and with the next full moon approaching, there were no violent outbursts between Gryffindor and Slytherin pupils. Ravenclaw were looking like certainties to win the House Cup and if Gryffindor beat Hufflepuff in their final game of the season in June they would claim the Quidditch Cup. Everything within Hogwarts seemed to be settling down. Which was lucky because the Seventh years needed every second to spend on the increasingly difficult and long homework assignments they were getting every night without fail. They worked as a team, Lily and Amelia did all the potions, Sirius and James worked on Charms, Jake and Remus did Transfiguration and Hayley and Hope handled DADA. Even so, it still took them hours every night to finish, leaving little time for cuddling. As a result, Lily and Hayley spend plenty of nights in the guys dorm, catching up on spending time with their boyfriends rather than sleeping. Remus and Emma had broken up, claiming they were both too busy to deal with a relationship. Amelia and Sirius were also getting further apart, which worried her. She still hadn’t had a chance (or the heart) to tell him about her pregnancy and she was getting closer to giving birth. If she didn’t tell him soon… 


 


One night late in March, Lily, Hayley, Jake and Amelia were all in the common room. It had been a whole month since any fights, chaos and general mayhem and they were all enjoying a break from homework for a change. Jake lay asleep on the sofa, Hayley curled up with him. Amelia was sitting in the armchair next to them, admiring her best friend as he slept.


 


“Everything okay Amy? It seems like forever since we’ve talked,” Lily said gently.
 

 


Amelia glanced across at her and smiled. She realised how much Lily had changed in the last few months. Her hair had grown out into a chin length bob which really suited her compared to the pixie. She was taller than before, almost catching up with Jake and James, whereas Amelia herself was still miles smaller. She looked softer and overall happier too, which was a bonus. Amelia was really happy for Lily and felt a pang of jealousy run through her. Why couldn’t her life be as perfect as hers?


 


“I’m fine Lily, how about you?”


 
 

“Amy, I’m just brilliant!”


 


There was a sparkle about Lily. Amelia smiled and glanced out the window. Full moon. She could feel the castle shake slightly in the gale-force winds. She spotted something in the forest and called Lily who glanced out with her.


 
 

“What is it Lils?”


 


Lily smiled gently. It was clearly just something from the forest, there was tons of stuff in there.
 

 


“Don’t worry Amy. It’s just things that go bump in the night.”
 

 


A/N: Hey again guys, thanks for sticking with me. As you can probably tell we're nearing the end of the book, so I'm reaching that point where storylines are ending. There's 5 more chapters after this one and I hope you guys are enjoying it. Please please please leave a review :)
 

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