Chapter 5: The Shape of Things to Come is the fifth chapter of The Life and Times, taking place in October of James and Lily's sixth year. 


The chapter begins with Carlotta Meloni giving Lily a strange premonition, due to Lily's insomnia. Later that day, Lily is walking down the corridor with Donna Shacklebolt and they discover someone has posted Death Eater propaganda posted on the walls. Donna tells Jack Lathe, the Auror working on the Hogwarts Case and Lily gets James to show her the way into Dumbledore's office. James shows her the way, but has no desire to help her catch whoever's responsible. 

A few days afterwards, Lily is with Luke at the library and she tells him how bothered by the posters she is. Luke disregards the posters, prompting Lily to ask him his opinion of the Death Eater movement. Luke reveals that he doesn't think they're threatening and can even see why they think the way they do.

"Really, you have to understand that a lot of wizards think that our world would be better if everyone was the same, and you can't exactly blame them..." -Luke Harper

Distressed, Lily leaves, only to discover more posters with a different message. When she goes to Professor McGonagall, she learns that they appeared in the middle of the day and no one saw who put them up.

When new messages appear a few days later, Lily and James overhear Lathe telling McGonagall that he doesn't think the messages are a lead in the Hogwarts Case, but that he'll look into it if he can. James talks to Lily about the messages and Lily realizes that he's been thinking about it, despite telling her when they first appeared that he didn't care. James implies that he has the capability to find out who's responsible, but has no motivation. 

The next day, Lily is partnered with Severus Snape in Potions class and she not-so subtly hints that she suspects he may know something about the Death Eater propaganda. Snape doesn't say anything because Lily won't be his friend.

After another message is left up, Donna and Lily speculate who it could be, but they are interrupted by Miles Stimpson verbally abusing Marlene, leaving her speechless, in tears, and unable to eat dinner. After she runs to Gryffindor Tower, Adam McKinnon asks about her, but Lily and Mary hide Marlene and Adam's relationship issues.

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to Lily, James and the Marauders are staking out the castle using the Marauder's map to catch the perpetrator. They see Roland Urquhart behaving suspiciously and James and Sirius trap him in a stairway between the second and third floors while Remus and Peter leave an anonymous tip with Lathe. 

The next day, the entire school knows it was Urquhart and he is suspended. Lily meets up with Luke who apologizes for being insensitive in the library, then she meets up with Severus and they agree to be friends again. Afterwards, she talks to James, confident that James is the one who caught Urquhart, but James doesn't admit it. 


  • Lily and Severus become friends again in this chapter
  • This chapter forshadows Luke's death eater connections.