Disclaimer: These characters and the brilliant idea of a kid called Harry Potter belong to the equally brilliant J.K.Rowling. I'm just playing :)
A/N: This is a one-shot piece of Marauder fluff! I am in the middle of writing a longer story about Harry's 6th Year, with flashbacks to the Marauder time and I realised I'd not written about MWPP before, so this is my practice. You're probably gonna think it's pants, but I need all the feedback I can get in order to make the story I am working on now a success. So please review. Ta muchly.
Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs were four 16-year-old boys who happened to share the same love of mischief and rebellion. So much so that they adopted the nickname 'The Marauders' with pride. There always seemed to be some plan or another that they were working on, but on this dreary February evening, this wasn't the case. The four friends sat together on the long Gryffindor table in the Great Hall looking as bored and dull as the weather outside. Suddenly, James saw someone who caught his eye. Lily Evans. His eyes followed her so closely that he almost broke his neck as she passed. Sirius growled in annoyance and threw a bread roll at his best friend. James turned to glare at him.
"What did you do that for?" he demanded.
"It was for your own good, Prongs. I didn't think Lily would give you a second glance if she saw you drooling into your shepherd's pie!" Sirius replied coolly, causing Remus and Peter to laugh. James scowled. He hated being treated as the dolt of the group, that was Peter's job after all.
"Give it up James, Lily's already made it clear she's not interested in you," said Remus. James glared at him. He knew Remus had been talking to Lily about him the other day. It had angered him and he had told Remus so. His friend had shrugged saying they were just friends. You'd better be, James had warned in reply.
"I'm so bored," announced Sirius, sensing the tension. "Let's do something. Anything. I don't care what. Homework will do …no I take that back."
"Maybe we should talk about why Remus decided to spend the other evening with Lily in the library, instead of us, and lied about it," James said through his teeth.
"Please don't start this again, Prongs," Wormtail pleaded with James.
"I didn't lie about it!" protested Remus shortly. "I told you I was going to meet her and you went off on one like you always do because, although you try to hide it with your cocky attitude, you're actually insecure about the fact that Lily and I are friends."
James began to react when Sirius yelled out.
"Guys. Guys!! Why does every argument, no forget that, every conversation you two have always have to involve Lily Evans. I'm sick of hearing about her to be honest. She's not that great anyway." James and Remus, whose eyes had been locked, both snapped their heads to Sirius. "Well, she isn't. Come on guys, we're the Marauders aren't we? Let's do something fun." Peter nodded his head quickly in agreement. Remus mumbled something. James said nothing.
"What do you want to do then, Padfoot?" Peter asked. Sirius gave it some thought. He wanted to do something that would close the rift that had appeared between his two best friends. It had to be something that reminded the two that they had been friends for a long time, something they used to do before all of this 'Lily Evans' rubbish.
"Doss night," he said simply and the other three grinned at him. They hadn't had a doss night in years. The boys would stay up all night, drinking too much butterbeer, make an incredible mess of their dorm and generally act like prats. His fellow Marauders voiced their approval.
"We need a theme," said James, already looking forward to the night's activities.
"How about … the destruction of teenage crushes in preferences to our best friends," Sirius said casually causing Prongs and Moony to look at the table in shame. James glanced at Remus and gave an apologetic smile. Remus returned it.
"Great!" cried Sirius, pulling them both into a big hug. "I'll go sort some stuff out and I'll meet you upstairs." This was going to be a long night, he could tell.
Wormtail snorted a laugh as Padfoot finished his story on how Severus Snape had gotten knocked over in Charms by a flying textbook.
"A classic Snivellus moment!" he concluded, helping himself to another butterbeer. The evening had been going well, with no mention of Lily Evans at all. When Wormtail continued to laugh, Moony threw a pillow at him, sending him flying and spilling his butterbeer on himself. This made the rest of the group laugh along with Peter who, in this 6th year with his friends, was used to things like that happening. James stopped laughing at the sound of a shriek of giggles downstairs in the common room. It was only just getting late, and some of the older students were still awake. James sighed loudly.
"You'd better not be thinking what I think your thinking," Sirius warned.
"I'm not," James replied quickly.
"Yeah, James doesn't think at all," added Wormtail, and another pillow was sent his way. Sirius got up and sat on the spare bed in their dorm. Another boy had shared it with them in their first year, but had opted to stay sane and move to another room.
"Let me confront you with something I found on the floor this afternoon, Prongs." Sirius' face was solemn, with a tweak of a smile at the corner of his mouth. James frowned. Sirius reached for the drawer by the side of his bed and removed a photo … of Lily. James lunged for it but Sirius raised it out of his reach.
"Ah, ah, ah lover boy, I think I might keep this for myself." James was horrified that his friend had found it. He couldn't think what to say. "Aw, I've embarrassed Romeo," Sirius laughed and he, along with Remus and Peter, blew kisses in James' direction.
"Knock it off guys." James pleaded. Sirius shook his head.
"You need help mate. Serious help. My friends, I think it's time we had a funeral for this unrequited love don't you." He lit the wood burner in the centre of the room with his wand. James began to look uneasy. Peter found James' books under his bed and went to the back page where he found JP4LE written in various sizes all over.
"Thought we didn't know about that?" Peter grinned. He ripped the back pages of the remaining books before passing them over to Sirius.
"This is stupid," James said weakly, as Sirius dragged him over to the burner. He indicated for Peter and Remus to follow. "What's the point of this Paddy?"
"We want to get rid of this love-sick fool and we want our friend back. I'm sorry it's had to come to this Prongs, I really am, but we only want you to see sense." James glanced at Peter and Remus for support. Peter looked eagerly at Sirius; Remus smiled slightly but said nothing. Sirius adopted a sombre stance and began to speak in a droning voice.
"My friends, we are gathered here today to grieve the loss of a dear friend, James Harry Potter, also known as Prongs, also known as Romeo …" Remus and Peter laughed.
"It is our hope that, this evening, we are reunited with this friend. Our brother. The one that makes us all miserable with his dashing good looks, talented flying skills and unintentional academic streak." Sirius stopped and reverted back to his normal voice. "Hey, why are we doing this? I'm glad he's gone, it makes me feel better about myself." He took a deep breath and regained his minister character. "Mr Potter, if you will proceed with the ceremony." He handed James the photo and the graffiti covered pages. Remus and Peter began to hum a funereal tune, joined by a grinning Sirius.
"Dum, dum duuuum, dum dum dummmm. Do it now Prongs, save yourself! Dum dum duuuum." James took a deep breath and dropped the papers and photo into the fire with a wince. His friends gave him a round of applause and cheered. Sirius clapped him on the back.
"Good to have you back, Prongs. How do you feel? Any different?" he asked. James gave his most convincing dazed look.
"Yeah actually, I do. Come here you handsome thing," he lunged for Sirius who screamed a laugh and jumped from one bed to another in a vain attempt to lose his newfound admirer. Peter and Remus laughed uncontrollably. James eventually decided to give up on Sirius and made his way to sit with Remus and Peter. Sirius crossed to his own bed and brought out a large bottle.
"Now for the wake," he announced. A loud knock silenced the group. They stared at each other, each wanting someone else to go. The knock came again. Peter pushed Remus to the door and followed him, joined by Sirius and then James. Remus opened the door to face no other than Lily Evans. She didn't look happy.
"Do you four have any idea what time it is? Some of us are trying to sleep. We have a mock potions exam in the morning, you know!" Sirius frowned.
"Do we?" he asked and she nodded. He glanced round at his friends, who also nodded. "Oh. Oops." The other three sniggered. Lily didn't look impressed. Her green eyes were wide as she glared at Sirius. He moved himself behind James for protection.
"Keep your voices down, please," she requested. The boys muttered apologies.
"Sorry, Lily," said Remus.
"Sorry," mumbled Peter to the floor.
"Yeh, soz Lil," Sirius said unconvincingly. He received a sharp elbow in the ribs from James. She sighed, her temper fading.
"What are you four doing anyway?" she asked frowning, looking over James' shoulder in curiosity.She noticed the burner was lit. She frowned in confusion, the evening was mild.
"Nothing," they piped together and she gave them a look of disgust.
"Whatever. Just keep it down." She shut the door in their faces and walked away. Once she was out of hearing range, all four boys began to laugh.
"Ooooh," they squealed, even James joining in.
"Looks like we saved you from a fate worse that death there Prongs," Sirius said, handing around the chocolate frogs. James nodded. He had to agree, Lily was scary sometimes.
"What's this?" Wormtail asked, picking up the large bottle, which contained murky brown liquid.
"That's a special concoction I made up for tonight. Hmm, maybe I could hand that in for my potions test tomorrow," he added thoughtfully. Seeing the confusion on his friends' faces he decided to elaborate. "It's part butterbeer, part pumpkin juice, part lemonade and part … Firewhiskey!" he added with a grin. "My cousin, Andromeda brought me a bottle the last time I met her in Hogsmead. She's wicked." he grinned.
"Yuck, Sirius that sounds gross!" exclaimed James, and the others had to agree.
"Shame you think that, Prongs my good friend, because you're gonna be the first to try it," Sirius said with a grin. James shook his head franticly.
"I'll do it," offered Remus. They stared at him in disbelief. He, if any of them, would usually have been the one to decline such an experience. "Oh come on, it can't be any worse that the Wolfsbane potion, can it?" he said matter-of-factly.
"Yeah, or that time we drank that old milk thinking it was butterbeer," Peter remembered with a laugh. "Go on, Moony. Do it!" Remus held the bottle in front of him as his friends created a drum-roll on their knees. He took a deep breath then a big gulp from the bottle. At first it didn't seem to affect him, then he gagged and coughed at the after taste. He scrunched up his face in disgust. His friends, however, were impressed.
"Quick, he's gonna be sick! Open a window," cried James. Remus shook his head, swallowing several times to try and rid his mouth of the taste.
"I'm not, I'm not!" he croaked, to the relief of the others. There was a moment of silence before Remus looked up and raised his eyebrows. "Right, who's next then?" They turned to Peter, who screamed and dived for his bed. All three dived after him.
"Come on Wormy," sang James. "It's not so bad, Remus lived didn't he? Stop being a baby."
"Yeah, Peter. Be a man!" added Sirius. Peter blinked at them reluctantly before reaching for the bottle.He took a tentative sip. A pause. Then he rushed to the window and was sick. His friends screamed with laughter, rolling around on the floor, not caring to check on their friend who had suddenly turned a pale shade of green. The floorboards creaked outside in the corridor and the dorm fell silent. An impatient sigh could be heard and then a loud knock. The Marauders stifled laughs. They were in trouble again.