So, this was written for the Forbidden Love challenge over at NGF, with the prompt of carved in stone. I mostly got my inspiration from the "they're destined to forever be apart" aspect of forbidden love, so I hope that's clear.

I also used a few prompts from th S, S, forum.

Dedicated to Amy, because she wanted a serious LilyLysander, instead of the crack!fic I was thinking about.

Thanks to Naomi { } and Rachel {intoxicating touches} for betaing!

(all of us are done for
but we live in a beautiful world)

"Ly, I think I might want to kill myself," Lily giggles drunkenly as she walks up and nearly falls off of her dangerously high heels, her signature black lace bow dropping over her cherry red bangs.

His heart nearly stops. "No, Lily, please, don't even joke about that," he begs. "See, you're giggling, you can't be serious. And suicide isn't something to joke about." He tries to stop his heart from thumping like a drum, because she's not serious, and really, why on earth would she ever want to kill herself? She has no reason to, and people love her, and she has a boyfriend, for Merlin's sake.

/and merlin, if anyone should want to kill themselves over that, it's him.

The giggles fade, and are replaced by a sad, confused expression. "I'm not joking… I think, anyway. The thought just popped in my head, and ouch, Ly, it hurts." She falls into his arms, crying all of the sudden, and it occurs to him that maybe she might be serious, because Lily's usually this chipper, flirtatious, devious girl, more likely to shag a guy while drunk at a party than cry- and if her occasional broken smiles have turned into full on waterworks, she might just be depressed.

"Oh, Lily..." is all he can say before wrapping his arms around her and giving her the deepest, most passionate hug he can manage, trying to push all that he feels about her into one pure beam of emotion. "You'd be missed. Oh Merlin, you'd be missed." It occurs to him that they're probably quite the picture, a boy and a girl, sobbing their hearts out, her drunk, him sober, and the weight of forbidden love on their shoulders (pfft, only his).

He takes a mental snapshot and reminds himself to tell Lorcan to paint it later.

"Ly," she asks, the tears creating little offshoots of black mascara and giving off the impression that she really has died (he shivers and tries to shove the image away), "What if no one actually misses me? What if I just… disappeared?"

He shakes his head and laughs bitterly. "Albert would miss you. James and Al would miss you. Hell- I'd miss you more than is healthy…" He freezes, not meaning to let that particular detail slip.

Lily doesn't respond, though, and as he feels her chest moving up and down softly, he realizes she's fallen asleep. He's not exactly sure what to do, seeing as it's his chest she's asleep on, not her boyfriend's, not her brothers', not even her best friend's.

"Hey, is she okay?" Albert, Lily's painfully shy (and not at all suited to her, Lysander thinks jealously) boyfriend asks in his perpetually quiet and timid voice as he walks over. "I mean, not that you're not perfectly capable of taking care of her-" he stammers as Lysander gives him a look.

"Yeah, she's just had a bit too much to drink," Lysander says, making the split second decision not to tell Albert what Lily told him. Perhaps as her boyfriend, he should know, but really, there's a reason Lily told him, and he's not going to question it. "You're in Slytherin, do you want to carry her back to her dorm?"

Albert nods. "I'll get one of the other girls in her year to come with me to help her get to bed." Lysander holds back the urge to say that if he were Lily's boyfriend, he'd try anything to get her up to the dorms himself, and instead nods back. He painstakingly lifts her head and body off his chest and puts her into Albert's arms bridal-style.

A faint smile plays across Albert's lips as he looks down at Lily, because even though she's drunk and passed out, he obviously still loves her, and Lysander feels guilty. Because for all the thoughts he has of him being better for Lily then the trashcan, Albert loves her and she knows it.

And Lysander, no matter how much he'd love to, can barely even hope she'll believe him when he smiles.

He watches her across the hall at breakfast the next morning, looking for any hint that she remembers what she said. Apart from a clear hangover, he can't see any signs that it happened at all, let alone her remembering it.

She's flirting and she's laughing and she's raising an eyebrow, and it almost makes him sigh in relief, because it's so truly Lily, she has to be okay. But then she's putting an arm around Albert and giving him a kiss far too risque for the Great Hall, and he's almost wishing that she remembered, because they shared something. And he kind of wants to wrap those tears and regrets and doubts into a jar and keep it beside his bed- as sick as it is, it was the one time when he felt something from her, and he wants to remember that.

Almost as if she's reading his thoughts, she looks over and raises an eyebrow so almost imperceptibly that no one can tell it's him she's looking at.

"We live in a beautiful world, Lily," he mouths, hoping desperately that she'll remember. "Don't forget that."

She gives him a broken smile. "No we don't," she whispers back, and somehow her voice carries all the way to him.


He stares down at the words on the page, and his brain gets lost on the way. No. It's not possible, and it's surely not happening.

Dearest Lysander,

When you're drunk, you tend to say the darndest things, don't you? But I'm afraid I meant what I said at that last party. I've decided to kill myself. I know that sounds harsh and cold and not at all serious, but I can't think of any other way to say it. I'm not Molly, I can't paint sad words into smiles, and that's just it, isn't it? I don't have a special talent. I don't have something to do at parties. All I have is a talent for making boys want me, and that's not a talent at all. You never thought of it as one, anyway.

Nobody did, really, so I'm not blaming you. The only thing I was seen as was, well, a slut. Now, I'm not saying I didn't change my ways towards the end, when I dated Albert, but my best friend liked him, and I took him, and if I don't even deserve love from my best friend, then who's to say if anyone really loves me at all?

So I suppose that's why I'm doing this. As one last ditch attempt for attention- really, Dom should have seen it coming, with all the times she's called me an attention whore. When it comes down to it, that's all I am.

I won't say I love you, because that'll just prove the point. A girl ending a suicide note by telling a guy she loves him? That's just past the point of attention-seeking, and even I'm not that tacky.

I'm aware that this note doesn't sound even remotely as serious as it should. I don't care. I wasn't even remotely as serious as I should have been in life, and if people can't take my last words being joking, then they can go die in holes everywhere.

So yeah. Bye.
Lily Luna Potter

P.S. I'm not going to ask for some sort of clever, witty, original funeral. Just... Bury me somewhere where I'll be seen, okay?

He rereads the words a few times more before he registers exactly what they're saying and turns white as a sheet. He sinks into a seat in shock and the paper flutters to the ground.

The wind blows throughout the field where they've decided to hold the funeral, but he doesn't notice. Instead, he lets his anger simmer, reaching a boiling point and threatening to kill someone with it's fierceness.

Albert with his tears of regret.

James with his haunted depression.

Albus with his brooding inability to cry.

Harry with his shocked, heartbroken eyes.

Ginny with her racking sobs.

He himself with his guilt, because if he'd opened that letter just a little quicker, if he'd only ran a little faster, if he'd only flooed a little sooner, she'd still be alive.

None of them are safe from his anger anymore.

"Lily was a brilliant person," Albert says, starting his speech off with a few tears and a deep breath. "I'm not going to lie and say that everyone liked her, but she was a brilliant person beneath what everyone else saw. I remember one time when…" Lysander stops paying attention at what is sure to be a cheesy, sickening anecdote that will accentuate all of her good sides, and instead directs his gaze towards a tiny candle burning next to Lily's grave.

He wants to put it out.

Lily wasn't fire, Lily wasn't ice, Lily wasn't water, Lily wasn't anything. He glares at Harry and Ginny, sure that they didn't really know their daughter as well as they thought they did. The whole reason Lily wasn't with them at the moment was because she couldn't define herself with one word, and then they'd gone and done it at her funeral. Couldn't they have shown her their love before, when she'd actually needed it?

"I just…" Albert finishes with a sob, "I just wish Lily knew how much she was loved… How much I loved her." Lysander watches him unfeelingly as he stumbles off the podium. Lysander stopped feeling the second he finished that letter, and Lysander doesn't have to care about the puny boy across from him.

Finally, the overly sympathetic woman directing the funeral calls him up to the podium, and he walks up as quickly as he can. When he stands in front of the microphone, he attempts to smile (he suspects that it looks more like a grimace). "I love Lily," he says as his first words, being sure to leave the 'd' out. He looks Albert directly in the eye. "Always have, always will."

Not bothering to wait for his brother's unveiling of a memorial painting, he runs off the stage. He doesn't run to anywhere in specific, he just runs.

"Hello, Lysander," his mum says as she sits down next to him. He groans, he doesn't feel like talking to her right now. He doesn't say anything, hoping his silence will convey a message. "I miss her too," she says, staring out at the sunset. "She was my goddaughter, you know that."

He flinches at her use of the past tense. "Is," he mutters, correcting her. "She's not dead."

A dreamy smile slides across his mother's face. "The ones we love never truly leave us, do they Lysander?" She puts a hand on his heart. "They're in there. And don't worry, she'll come back." He looks up, shocked- does she really mean that? "The things we lose always turn up in the end," she finishes, and he sighs. Of course. It's just his mum's crazy philosophical talk.

"Right," he mutters.

He watches as over the course of a year, people start to move on. James loses the haunted look in his eyes, Albus begins to go out with a pretty Hufflepuff (one of Lily's friends) who's just as heartbroken as he is, Harry and Ginny help each other recover, and-

Albert begins to date Joanna Cote. Lysander watches them from behind doors and tapestries, and he realizes that somehow, Albert has moved on.

He hasn't.

He still loves Lily.

Slowly, his circle of friends start to leave him and branch out. He doesn't notice, he's too busy taking photographs of red to leave on the transparent casket they gave her. He knows she'll see them.

He visits her once a week, just to see the innocent smile on her face. Somehow, in death, Lily manages to be far prettier than she was in life (which is saying more than he ever could with just adjectives).

One day, he opens the glass top to her casket and kisses her.

(she does not wake)

He smashes the casket, willing to do anything to bring her back to life, and maybe when she's released from her prison, she'll come back?

Lorcan and Molly find him, lying next to her with a piece of glass shoved deep into his chest (it hurts, but it's going to help, he knows. he'll be joined with her again). They rush to St. Mungoes, whispering encouragements such as "it's okay, Lysander, you'll be fine," but he only gives them a faint smile, because it's true. He will be fine.

He'll be with Lily again.

He wakes up, thrilled, because maybe he's died and he'll be with her, and they'll be an inscription (he loved her until the end) carved on his grave and-

There is no flatline on the screen next to his bed.