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A Different Kind of Magic by unjellify

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Chapter Notes: *Disclaimer* All the amazing characters, settings, etc. are JKR's, not mine. Oh, how I wish they were....
Thanks to my beta Emily for making this chapter so much more awesome.

Professor Dumbledore cleared his throat and all the new first years looked up immediately, with rapt attention. James and Sirius, Lily noticed, were otherwise occupied by dueling with a pair of breadsticks.

Since staff and students alike were now comfortably full and picking at the last morsels of food on their plates, Professor Dumbledore began to speak. After the usual announcements concerning newly appointed teachers, during which James seemed to remember that he was Head Boy and let his breadstick fall to the table, Dumbledore paused before continuing.

“You all know that a man who chooses to call himself Lord Voldemort is steadily gaining power in our world even as we speak,” he began. “I believe that he may try to”” he cleared his throat again “”recruit our older students to follow him. He may have already appealed to some of you,” he said, glancing momentarily at the Slytherin house table.

Then he turned back to the hall as a whole, and said passionately, “I urge you to refuse him and all for which he stands. I hope I do not need to reiterate that discrimination of any kind, including that which is based on ‘blood status,’ is not tolerated at Hogwarts. Any use of Dark magic will be punished severely.”

Dumbledore swept his bright blue eyes over the Great Hall, his gaze so intense that the first years’ eyes widened and they seemed to shrink a bit. “Now,” he said, “I am sure that all of you are very tired. You will soon be off to your dormitories, never fear. Goodnight.”

As Lily finished the last bite of her tart, Mary MacDonald turned to her and resumed the conversation they had been having on the train. “Come on, Lily, you can’t tell me that you don’t think James is good-looking.”

“He thinks he’s so special just because he’s a good flier and the best Chaser on the team,” Lily said, pressing her lips together.

“Best Chaser in the school, more like. That wasn’t my question, though,” Mary said, raising her eyebrows.

Lily didn’t answer. Mary smiled triumphantly, which only served to infuriate Lily even more. Since Lily had boarded the train with her, Mary had been rhapsodizing about the possibilities that came with patrolling the corridors at night with James. By the time that he’d walked into the prefects’ carriage, Lily was already sick of him, though she hadn’t seen him since the previous June.

She stood to leave, still refusing to answer Mary. She didn’t get very far, however, before Professor McGonagall approached her. “I would like to speak to you for a moment, Miss Evans,” she said. Despite her phrasing, it didn’t sound particularly like a request.

“Of course,” Lily said, rising.

“I’d like to see you as well, Mr. Potter,” McGonagall called.

Lily saw James look longingly at his remaining cauldron cake and then make his way down the table toward them. Professor McGonagall led them out of the Great Hall and up to her office. Once they were both seated, Professor McGonagall brought out a tin of Ginger Newts and offered them round. “No, thank you,” Lily said politely. James took two.

“Now, as Head Boy and Girl, you will have various duties this year. These duties include patrolling the corridors at midnight to ensure that no students are out of bed, administering a certain amount of discipline, and taking charge of the prefects.”

“Can we dock points?” James asked eagerly.

McGonagall gave him a narrow-eyed look, which Lily thought was well-merited. “If students are caught in an infraction of the rules, then yes, you may, Mr. Potter. For severe transgressions, of course, Professor Dumbledore or I should be called upon to address the situation.”

“Excellent,” James muttered, grinning.

“You will be notified when House passwords change and are expected to pass this information on to the prefects. Are there any other questions?” She paused, waiting for Lily or James to speak.

When they remained silent, she continued, “Let me just say that I am very proud that you two are members of Gryffindor house.” She smiled at them proudly for a moment, then seemed to remember herself. “I expect that you will conduct yourselves as such.”

Lily nodded. “Of course, Professor.”

“Oh, yes, of course,” James echoed, perhaps trying to make up for his earlier question.

“Also, Miss Evans, Mr. Potter, you will meet with the prefects shortly and inform them of their houses’ respective passwords. Gryffindor's password will be gladius, Hufflepuff’s password will be 'pixie dust,' and Slytherin’s password is malum discordiae . The answer to Ravenclaw’s riddle is ‘the second.’ That will be all, I think. Good evening.”

As they left the office, James seemed to be in considerably better spirits than Lily. “Evans, looks like we’ve got a great year ahead of us, eh?”

“Oh, certainly,” Lily said, with more sarcasm than she had intended.

“I can’t wait to take points off some of the bloody Slytherins for hexing people; they’ve had it coming to them,” James said.

Lily looked at him disapprovingly. “The Slytherins aren't the only ones who hex people, James.”

“Oh, I forgot,” James said, a slight edge in his voice. “You love the Slytherins, don’t you?” He sounded almost jealous, but Lily couldn’t see why he would be.

“Not anymore,” Lily said, trying to keep her face emotionless. She didn’t want to think about that right now.

James looked over at her. He opened his mouth and then closed it again. “Tell you what,” he finally proposed, “next time we see that dirty little”” James hesitated, perhaps to choose the least offensive word “”Slytherin, you can take two hundred points off him for something. I’ll back you up.”

Lily stared at him. “I can’t believe you’re just going to abuse this!”

“Evans, it’s not””

“I’ll tell you what it is, James,” Lily said, her voice rising in pitch and volume, “it’s that you feel so entitled because you’re good at Quidditch, and Professor Dumbledore may have thought you were ready for some responsibility, but you still obviously think that you’re above the rules and you can do whatever you damn well please!” She took a deep breath.

James looked genuinely hurt, and she felt a stab of remorse. Granted, what she had said had been mostly true, but she had said all of that because she had felt like yelling at someone. James was not the person with whom she was angry. “I’m not that bad,” he said. “I don’t know why you hate me so much. You treat me like I’m a Dementor, for Merlin’s sake!”

Lily didn’t know what to say. They gathered the prefects and informed them of the House passwords, saying nothing to each other. Finally, she broke the silence.

“You know, James,” she said thoughtfully as they walked toward the staircase to Gryffindor tower, “you’re not as bad as a Dementor. More on the giant squid level, maybe.”

“Oh, really,” James said. “Well, you caught me. I am the giant squid, I’m just cleverly disguised.” He reached over and tickled her waist with the hand that was not carrying his books.

Lily giggled involuntarily and then glared at him. “I think I see Mary,” she said, walking ahead.

“Wait, Lily, I’ve got a sonnet for you,” James said, keeping stride with her. “I just made it up, right then. Would you like to hear?”

Lily almost ran up the staircase, but she wasn’t fast enough. James followed, one arm outstretched like a Shakespearean player, bellowing, “How shall I describe the sound of your laugh, my flower? ’Tis obviously longing for hot sex with the most handsome Gryffindor Quidditch captain in the world!”

Lily blushed bright red as the rest of the students in the hall snickered. “James Potter, I hate you!” she hissed. Upon seeing how downcast he looked, she wished she had chosen different words. Then again, she wasn’t the one proclaiming inappropriate poetry for everyone else to hear”if that could even be classified as poetry.

Lily was so furious that she couldn’t concentrate on her Ancient Runes reading. She kept mistranslating ‘chaos,’ which she had known since third year. “Hot sex with James Potter, honestly,” she muttered, and looked up to see several girls staring in her direction with mixed confusion and jealousy. Lily felt like crying.


By the end of the next day, Lily wanted the floor to open up and swallow her. His comment on the staircase the day before had started the rumor that she had put out for James Potter, or, at least, that she soon would. Lily didn’t even want to see James, let alone have sex with him, but avoidance would be difficult, as he had somehow managed to sit in the chair across from her. By the time she had finished her Potions essay, she was well and truly cross. “I hope you’re happy,” she hissed, leaning toward him.

“Happy with what?” James asked, looking up.

“You know, all the gossip,” Lily said through her teeth. The common room had almost cleared out now, so she felt fairly safe in broaching the topic.

“Oh, that. I had to hex Mulciber when he asked me how, er, Muggle-borns are in bed.” James beamed at her.

“You did what?” Lily said, thinking, Honestly, it’s like he doesn’t know he’s Head Boy.

“Hexed him,” James repeated. “He was rather confused and had tentacles sprouting all over him when I was done, so I stuffed him into a broom closet until he could collect himself.”

“I thought you stopped hexing people for no reason,” Lily said sharply.

James looked at her disbelievingly. “I did. He insulted you, Evans, that’s a reason right there. It’s disrespectful, what he was saying, isn’t it?”

Lily knew that Mulciber hadn’t called her a Muggle-born, and despite herself she was flattered. “That’s very...er...chivalrous of you, but who made everyone think I was some sort of hussy in the first place?” she replied.

“You sound like my mum,” James said. His smile only grew wider as she sat down next to him. Lily resolved not to give him the satisfaction of asking him why he was so chuffed.

Finally, after Lily had finished her homework and they were ready for patrol, she asked, “What are you so happy about?”

“Your nightie’s a bit see-through,” James told her, looking positively gleeful.

Lily felt her face turn scarlet, something her fair skin did only too easily, and shoved her robes on in record time. Her nighties were all the same fabric, too, now that she came to think of it. Not only was she wearing pajamas for the rest of the school year, but possibly for the rest of her life. “Let’s go,” she said, unable to say anything else.

She soon found that Hogwarts was slightly frightening at nighttime, even after six years. She jumped every time a suit of armor or a staircase moved, which James took as an excuse to put his arm around her. Lily continually shrugged him off, noticing unwillingly that James did have very nice arms, lean and muscular. Not that she would ever tell him that”his ego was big enough as it was.

Patrol was uneventful except that they caught a couple of fifth year Ravenclaws kissing by the statue of Gregory the Smarmy. James wolf-whistled, which embarrassed both of the students, and Lily took ten points from Ravenclaw, which was what they had been told to do. She suspected that she was supposed to take more points, but keeping some semblance of authority was hard enough without James’ antics.

When Lily and James arrived at Gryffindor common room, which was otherwise deserted, Lily said, “I’m going to bed, all right? Goodnight.”

“No, Ev-Lily, wait.” James touched her arm and Lily turned.

James took a deep breath. “I’m sorry that I said those things in the hall yesterday. It was stupid”really stupid”and I shouldn’t have done it. Maybe you’re right about me.”

Lily was too shocked to speak for a moment. She stared into James’ hazel eyes, wide and earnest behind his spectacles. “It’s forgotten,” she said finally.


Lily broke her gaze away from his. “Well, g’night then.”

“Sweet dreams, Evans,” James said with his slightly crooked smile.

James Potter, apologizing for something? Lily thought as she walked up the stairs to the seventh-year dormitory. In Lily’s experience, he was seldom serious at all, much less conciliatory. She lay down and stared through the darkness at the shadowy hangings of her bed for a long time, wondering how someone could possibly be so insufferable at times and so mature at others. You know what, James, maybe, just maybe, I might be wrong about you, Lily thought. She knew he couldn’t hear her, but that was just as well.
Chapter Endnotes: Thanks for reading! Chapter three will be from James' P.O.V. again. Hope you enjoyed this chapter but either way reviews are appreciated; I love getting feedback.