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[A/N] Hi! I'm sorry that it sorta took me awhile to get this up! :) But here it is! LoL... It's pretty long... I think... LoL.. Anyways, Please review and tell me what you think! Thanks so much!! I love you all!! ^_^ Disclaimer: I own nothing... except the plot... and a few of the characters that I made up myself... :) Chapter 4 - Happy Birthday Jam... er... Potter "Can we do the puzzle now Lily?" Sarah asked in her sweet voice, gazing up at her with huge hazel eyes. Lily couldn't help but laugh slightly. She knew that the child was bored and wanted something fun to do. Lily couldn't blame her. She'd want something to do too if she was stuck in the hospital. The small girl had been pestering her about that puzzle for the past hour now, and now that the healers had finally left Sarah alone, Lily figured she should do the puzzle. "Sure sweetie." She said, picking up the puzzle that Mrs. Potter had brought and laying it on the table by the bed. The two girls spent the next little while doing the puzzle about a unicorn comic character named Daisy. James watched them. He couldn't help it. It was like he had a disorder or something that made him watch Lily all of the time. He smiled slightly as he watched two of his favorite girls in the world, but his heart felt tight. He had been so worried about Sarah. He still was actually. What if something else happened to her? James wouldn't be able to stand that. And Lily... It tore him up inside to know that she hated him. Well it's your own fault you prat! came an annoying voice that sounded suspiciously like Remus'. He scowled lightly and tried to divert his attention to elsewhere. Fortunately, a moment later the door creaked open. Lily looked over to the door and her heart broke at the sight. Tears threatened to overflow as she jumped off the bed and threw herself on her best friend. "Carina!" she cried. "Are you okay? I've been so worried! My god, you go sit down, I'm going to find you a healer okay? Good." She ran from the room, her blood boiling. Those Blacks will get what's coming to them! she thought angrily about Sirius' and Carina's parents. When Lily ran from the room, James jumped up and pulled Carina into a hug as well. "Your okay now?" he asked. She nodded slightly and sat down next to her twin on a nearby chair. Her head was pounding, but she was happy. A big smile was on her face. Sirius and James looked at each other and smiled slightly. They knew everything was going to be okay for now at least. Lily returned 5 minutes later with a healer on her tail. The healer quickly healed most of Carina's wounds and gave her a few potions. You know, the usual, and then left again. Lily sat down next to her friend, and Carina gave her a warm smile. Lily smiled back and Carina rested her head on Lily's shoulder. She let out a low sigh. At least that was one friend she could stop worrying about... somewhat anyway... *** The next few weeks went by fast. Carina stayed at Lily's for most of the time and Sirius stayed at James'. Sarah was out of the hospital and was looking much better, and everything was pretty much normal. Lily's parents came home from their honeymoon, for which Lily was all too glad. She was not happy at being alone with Petunia for any longer. In the last week of July, Aria finally came over for a visit. She had been away at the beach for much longer than anticipted. Aparantly she had met a guy who she hadn't been able to resist and just had to stay longer. The three girls were sunbathing in Lily's backyard by the pool, talking and just catching up. "So.. whatever happened to your reasoning about guys?" asked Carina, smiling. Aria shot her a look and Lily laughed. "She's right. I thought you weren't going to get 'tied down' until you found 'the one'. Aria rolled her eyes. "How am I going to find 'the one' if I don't try em out! Besides Travis was really nice, and hot and..." Lily cut her off, laughing slightly. "Okay... are you going to keep in touch?" Aria nodded enthusiastically. "AND he's a wizard! He goes to Beauxbatons!" Lily and Carina were impressed. "We'll have to meet him." said Carina, mock seriously. Lily nodded. "Yep, to approve." Aria just rolled her eyes. "You know, Remus is going to be here in a few days..." said Lily slyly, watching Carina's face for a reaction. Right on cue, a slight blush formed on Carina's cheeks and she didn't answer. Lily and Aria exchanged knowing looks, but didn't say anything yet. They could worry about that later. Instead, Aria turned the conversation around and said, "Yeah, it'll be James' birthday. You reckon we should do something for him?" Lily let out a derisive snort. "For him? Or to him? I say we egg him." she said, grinning in a manical way. Carina and Aria burst out laughing. Lily was confused. "What's so funny?" she asked. Before either one of them had a chance to respond, an all-too familiar voice said, "Ahh, Evans. You wouldn't really egg me would you?" Lily pursed her lips, looking much like her sister in an unpleasant way and said, "Go away Potter." "No, I sort of like to see you in your bathing suit." Stupid... stupid stupid stupid! thought James, berating himself. Why couldn't he just learn to hold his tongue? Lily stood up and glared at him. Needless to say, if looks could kill, James would have dropped dead that second. "Get out of my yard!" she said forcibly. James decided to oblige, but first he turned to Carina. "Sirius wants to see you or something..." he rolled his eyes. "Something about... a guy or something." Carina got an ugly look on her face, but she sighed and got up. "I'll be back." she said, following James from the yard. *** "So... let me get this straight..." Carina said, trying to keep calm. "You want me...to promise you... that I'll stay away from ALL of the guys at Hogwarts this year..." Sirius nodded, uncharacteristically serious. Carina sighed. "I can't promise you that!" she said, anger rising up in her. Sirius glared at her. "And why's that?" he asked suspiciously. "You fancy somebody?" Carina immediately thought of Remus and her cheeks tinged a little bit, but she stood her ground. "What would it matter!? Sirius I'm not a baby! We're going into our last year at Hogwarts! I'm not gonna forget that there are guys there! Do you want me to go lesbian or something?" He frowned at her outburst. "I just want you to be safe." he said, sounding hurt. Carina sighed, her anger slowly melting. "I'll be safe at Hogwarts Sirius. They won't be there." Carina said softly, refering to her parent. She gave her brother a hug and he sighed. Sirius didn't answer right away. He didn't trust anybody with his sister, but he guessed that he'd have to worry about that when guys asked her out. The only people he wouldn't mind her dating were James and Remus. They were the only two guys he trusted in the world with Carina. "I know." he gave in. Carina smiled widely at him and kissed him on the cheek. "Come on, lets go get James, Aria and Lily and go do something fun." Sirius snorted. "James and Lily... are you sure Rina? Whenever those two do something together, they end up fighting." Carina rolled her eyes. "Yeah I know, but that's all Lily. She's way too stubborn for her own good. She'll come around eventually." Sirius smiled unhopefully. "Let's hope so." For James' sake or he'll be one heartbroken lad. I mean, how many guys chase after the same girl for 6 years? *** I wish I lived in Canada or something... far far away from Potter... Lily thought, annoyed as she listened to him and Sirius talk about Quidditch. She was lying on her bed in her room, and James and Sirius were in James' room, going on and on about some broomstick... Carina was trying to drown out their voices by closing the window and turning up some music, but their voices still carried over into Lily's room. It was early in the morning, too early for James and Sirius to be talking about quidditch. It was 6:38 AM on July 23, James' birthday. She groaned and buried her head over her pillow to go back to sleep. Potter's birthday is not an adequate reason for me to be awake so early in the summer. Although every year James Potter always had managed to wake Lily up extra early on his birthday. Before Hogwarts, before Sirius, Remus, Peter, Aria and Carina, when the two of them were best friends James used to somehow make it through the windows into Lily's room and wake her up by singing their favorite song 'Let it Be' by the Beatles. Lily smiled slightly at the memory of a small, messy haired kid singing 'LET IT BE, LET IT BE WHISPER WORDS OF WISDOM LET IT BEEE!!!' at the top of his lungs. Lily would laugh and jump out of bed and sing loudly 'Happy Birthday' to him, and then she'd give him a gift. It had been tradition until James' 13th birthday. He had become an arrogant prat then, and Lily woke up and screamed at him to get out. She remembered the hurt look on his face, and tried to ignore the squirming guilty feeling in the pit of her stomach that she still felt when she thought of that day. She sighed and finally managed to fall back asleep. For a little while anyways. Lily was awakened an hour later by Carina hopping on her and waking her up. "Get up Lily! We have to get up nowww!" Lily growled and rolled over. "Why??" she mumbled, then smirked as something clicked. "Aww Rina, you can get ready to see Remus by yourself can't you?" Carina blushed as Lily looked at her with bleary eyes. "That's not why!" she said, scowling. Lily rolled her eyes. "What is it then?" Lily asked, getting out of bed as she realized that there was no way she'd be able to get more sleep. "Your mum is downstairs with Petunia and your dad waiting for you. Apparantly she has some sort of big news." Carina said, shrugging. Lily raised her eyebrows, her wind wandering. I wonder what it could be... maybe one of our aunt's are coming to visit... Lily glanced at the clock and groaned. It was only 7:50. What sort of announcement has to be made at this time of day? Lily thought exasperatedly while heading down the stairs in a grumpy mood. Usually Lily loved mornings, but lately she had preferred to sleep in. Lily enetered the kitchen and slumped over to the empty chair. "Finally... geez, you don't expect everybody to wait for you all the time do you freak?" hissed Petunia. Lily was too tired to do anything but glare. "Girls!" spoke up Lily's mother with an anxious note in her voice. Petunia fell quiet and Lily waited for whatever news her mother wanted to share that early in the morning. She yawned and finally her mother went on. "Well... I.. er... We.. I mean... umm... I'm pregnant again!" Instantly, all signs of sleepiness disappeared from Lily's appearance, and she stared at her mother in shock. "WHAT?" came Petunia's shrill voice. Lily smiled as the news finally sunk in. "I'm going to be a big sister!" she said happily rushing from her seat to hug her mother. "It isn't all that great." came Petunia's drawl. Lily shot her a glare. "Well I'll be a GOOD big sister." she shot back. Her mother sighed, and said "Why can't you two get along?" as she released herself from Lily's embrace and held her husband's hand. Lily smiled broadly, in an extremely cheerful mood, and ignoring her mother. This is going to be so exciting! *** Once Lily had informed Carina of her parent's news, they both got dressed happily and waited for Aria to show up. Once she did, the two of them dragged Lily to the Potter's to wish James a Happy Birthday and to give him his gifts... and so Carina could see Remus. They were just about to leave Lily's house when suddenly she stopped walking and froze, a blush creeping up on her cheeks. "I can't." she said. Aria rolled her eyes and started to drag her. "Lily! Just because you hate..." Lily cut her off. "No no... I don't have a gift for him... even if I do dislike him, that's awfully mean isn't it?" Aria laughed slightly and said, "No worries, just go make him a card quickly." Lily hesitated and then did it. She got a peice of paper and a crayon and wrote 'Happy Birthday' on the front, and on the inside she wrote, 'From Lily.' It wasn't much. Actually... It was extremely pathetic. She couldn't help but write some of the lyrics to 'Let it be' on the inside, just to remind him that they used to be friends. Then, just so he wouldn't think that she was getting soft, or starting to like him, she grabbed some things that would definitely change his mind on that. 10 minutes later, Lily had her purse slung over her shoulder gently and Aria was ringing the doorbell to James' house. Sirius opened the door and grinned at them. "Come to greet the birthday boy have we?" Lily rolled her eyes and Aria and Carina smiled. "Yes we have. We have gifts for him too." "Gifts? Did somebody say gifts?" came James' voice from behind Sirius. Aria and Carina laughed, but Lily didn't see what was so funny. Potter was selfish, so what? Carina and Aria walked towards James smiling and holding out his gifts. "Happy Birthday!" they said and each gave him a hug. He grinned and thanked them. James knew how much Lily detested him, and he wasn't expecting anything from her. He was surprised that she was actually over to his house. He glanced at her. She was twirling her hair and looking around the room. Suddenly her eyes flicked down to meet his and James' stomach flipped over. He gave her a weak smile, which she unexpectedly returned. James' stomach flipped again as she layed her purse down gently on the kitchen table and walked towards him, smiling awkwardly. "Happy Birthday Jam... er... Potter." she said quietly and handed him a card. James was surprised, and as much as he tried to, he couldn't hide it. It's really not all that surprising that I got him a card is it? Lily bit her lip. Yes, it is... I've been awful to him and haven't given him anything for his birthday since we were 12... She watched him open the card and a rare smile lit up his face. It wasn't one of his conceited 'you-know-you-want-me' trademark grins, but an actual smile. Lily couldn't help it, she smiled too. James stared down at the card in his hand. His stomach clenched as he read the song lyrics. It was nice to know she remembered, but that thirteenth birthday had definitely been the worst one ever. "Thanks." he said, not really knowing what to say. Lily just gave him a small smile. "Where are Moony and Wormtail?" came Sirius' whining voice. Lily rolled her eyes and turned away from James, thankful to get away from the awkwardness. Suddenly the doorbell rang and 2 people walked in through the door. "Hellooo?!" came a familiar voice. Lily grinned and went to greet one of her best friends. "Hi Remus!" she cried as he entered the room and gave him a big hug. James tried to swallow his jealous feelings. Why did Remus have to be one of Lily's best friends? It wasn't fair. "Have you had a good summer so far?" he asked her, smiling. Lily grinned at him and nodded. "Have you?" she looked at his handsome face and frowned. He was pale and had bags under his eyes, she could also make out faint scratches on his face and arms. She shot him a warning look. "Are you okay?" she asked. Lily was always worrying about Remus on the full moons. He gave her a grin and nodded. "No worse than usual." She gave him a patronizing look, and then turned around to let others greet him and Peter. Suddenly she caught a glance of her purse on the table and grinned evilly. She walked calmly towards it and slung it around her shoulder. She looked around the room. Everybody was talking, and not paying attention to her. Lily walked towards the group of friends, just when Sirius started to sing "Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthhday to you, Happy Birthday dear Jamesie, Happy birthday to you!!!!!" "Padfoot, don't you ever call me that again..." James said seriously, but smiling all the same. He had his back to her and she walked towards him. Her hands reached into her purse and her fingers enclosed around something round and cold. Remus caught her eye and gave her a 'what-are-you-doing?' look. Lily brought a finger up to her lips and grinned manically. By now she was standing right behind James, and he hadn't noticed. Sirius was keeping his attention, just as she had asked him to earlier. Lily raised her hand out of her purse and a moment later... 'Splat!' James suddenly felt something cold and wet on his head and trickling down his neck. "Arrghh!!!" he yelled and turned around to see all of his friends cracking up at him. He saw Lily with a guilty look in her eyes and broke into a grin. "You egged me?!" he said in disbelief. Lily grinned cheekily at him. "Happy Birthday." she stated before waving to her friends and walking out the door to go back to her house. "Unbelievable." said James, in awe of Lily. She's amazing. *** Later that day, everybody was just lazying around outside by Lily's pool. She would have kicked the guys out, but they weren't being unmanageable and it was Potter's birthday, so she felt like being nice... well... nicer than usual. Sirius, James and Carina were in the pool playing around, Aria was asleep and Lily and Remus were sitting at the edge of the pool and talking. "So, you've still got that crush on Carina?" Lily asked, smirking. Remus shot her a look and looked at Sirius warily. He hadn't heard though, he was too busy ganging up on James with Carina in their water fight. "When have I ever told you that I like Carina?" Lily rolled her eyes. "Pur-lease. I can tell. Your always watching her. I see the way you look at her, and you asked about her in your letters to me." He glared mockingly at her and she gave him a cheeky smile. They turned silent for a minute, and then Remus sighed. Lily turned to look at him with a confused look on her face. "What?" "She'd never like me back." Lily let out an exasperated sigh and let her feet dangle in the cool water of the pool. "Wanna bet on that?" Lily asked, grinning. Remus gave her a disbelieving look before gazing back at Carina. "Sirius would kill me..." he muttered. Lily rolled her eyes. "Who cares about that goon?" Remus chuckled before turning sombre again. "I'll think about it." he said, still watching Carina's gorgeous figure frolicking in the pool with her brother. Lily smiled again. "Well, think quickly. I heard a rumour at the end of last year that Josh Thompson liked her, and was going to ask her out on the train going back to school after he broke up with his girlfriend." Remus scowled. "I said I'll think about it." he said, pouting. Lily burst out laughing at the look on his face and jumped into the pool. "What's so funny?" he asked indignantly. Lily just started to swim towards the other three and called out, "Your face!" Remus gave her a 'ha-ha-very-funny' look and jumped in after her. James had watched the two of them talk and laugh from the other side of the pool. He couldn't hear what they were saying though. He really wished he was Remus sometimes. Him and Lily were so close, like siblings. Lily's laughter rung out in the air as she swam away from Remus and towards Carina. James watched as she whispered something in her ear. Carina blushed a deep red and she went under the water to hide it. Remus swam up behind Lily and yanked her legs, pulling her under. She shrieked and came up spluttering, and Remus was laughing. She glared at him. "Ooh you are so going to regret that." She said teasingly and then hoisted herself up out of the water. She walked over to Aria and sat down next to her sleeping friend. Now, what would be the best way to wake her up. Lily pondered for a moment before jumping up and running into the house. She returned a moment later, smiling evilly and with a bucket in her hands. She filled it up with water and poured it over Aria's head. James watched, amused as Aria jumped up and started to chase the beautiful redhead around the garden. Lily was laughing and looking extremely happy. James felt his stomach quiver. He loved to see Lily smiling, especially since he rarely saw her like that. It was an extremely pleasant change. James couldn't help but notice and be slightly embarassed at himself for always watching Lily. He didn't even realize it, and whenever she smiled, he smiled. It was weird. Sirius saw his friend watching Lily. He stopped tickling his sister who looked up at him. She realized what he was looking at and sighed. "He still likes her?" Carina asked softly. Sirius nodded, his gaze not wavering from James. "I'm worried about him. I think he really feels something for her this time. Why doesn't she see that?" he asked, slightly frustrated for his friend. Carina sighed again. "Lily is really stubborn, and she's convinced that James is a git. Me and Aria have been trying to get through to her, but nothing works. She thinks that James is just toying with her." she told her brother. She could tell by the look on his face that he was bewildered. "But that is so stupid." "What's stupid?" asked Remus as he came towards them. Carina felt her cheeks burn and tried to ignore it. "Lily thinking that James is toying with her." Remus glanced at James, who was still staring at Lily who was now beging threatened by Aria with the hose. He looked back at Sirius and Carina, and ignoring the flip in his stomach, he said, "It is rather stupid isn't it? I've been trying to talk to her too. She just won't hear of it." The three stayed silent for a few minutes before Sirius looked around and noticed that somebody was missing. "Where's Wormtail?" he asked. "He had to go home." said Remus. Then he headed for the edge of the pool, to climb out. Carina and Sirius followed his lead. 10 minutes later, they were drying out on some beach towels. Sirius had fallen asleep, and Aria had finally got tired of chasing Lily. The two of them were now sunbathing next to Carina and Remus, who were both a little bit red because they were sitting next to each other. Aria glanced around, and saw something that made her crack up laughing. What is the world is he doing? She wondered to herself. She noticed everybody else look at her strangely and she pointed to the pool, her hand wavering because she was laughing so hard. "JAMES! WHAT ARE YOU STILL DOING IN THERE?" Aria yelled out, trying to drown out her giggles. James finally realized that he was still standing in the middle of Lily's pool, watching her. He flushed crimson and hurridly got out of the water, trying to ignore his friend's laughter. I have got to get a grip on myself! Why do I always make a fool of myself around Lily? James silently berated himself as Remus, Aria and Carina laughed. Lily just smiled and shook her head as if amused. For some reason, James' spirits lifted as she met his gaze. Her eyes weren't narrowed in dislike or anger, but full of laughter. He smiled shyly at her, before turning back to sit next to a snoring Sirius, trying to ignore the feeling as if he had missed a step going down the stairs. He didn't see her smile back.

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