On Sunday night, James discovered that all screenings had come back negative for brain injuries, for which he was, of course, very thankful. He had worried secretly that he would be sent to St. Mungo's. It was a kind of nagging fear at the back of his mind which gave him a headache when he tried to read. He had to resort to aimlessly flipping through the Qudditch magazines Remus had apparently left for him while he was sleeping, glancing at the pictures of players zooming around the pitch.
Mental note: Read that article about avoiding foul calls. It could come in handy for our team next game.
James had sat up eagerly at Madam Pomfrey's arrival, waiting to hear the findings. She had told him, point-blank, that: "Head injuries are extremely complicated, and need to be treated as such. An ailment that cannot simply be cured by the wave of a wand, no matter how much we may wish it. The brain is much too vital to just experiment on by fiddling with charms and incantations." When James had asked her if he would be sent to St. Mungo's for observations, he had received a rather cryptic "we'll wait and see," which didn't assuage his fears any.
That night, came another occurrence which should have been a good one, but turned out to be nearly unbearable; a true instance of being careful what one wishes for. James, as much as he had longed for Sirius' chatty companionship, was now regretting the wish gravely. After having been chastised thoroughly by Madam Pomfrey "to not injure yourself anymore by acting upon idiotic impulses of martyrdom", Sirius was given the allowance to talk again. After having to spend a little over 24 hours mute, he was using his newly returned right…to complain. James soon found himself thinking very dearly about reaching over and smothering Sirius with a pillow many times.
Sirius complained about his bandages itching: "It feels like millions of little bugs are crawling around on my skin."
"The bandages aren't really that bad, Padfoot!" James retorted. Besides, I have more than you anyway! Why are you complaining?"
"Because I don't like bugs, and I don't like bandages!"
"So why complain about them?"
James soon discovered that sometimes trying to sway someone using logic, when that person had illogical thought patterns, often was more of a hassle than it was worth.
Sirius complained about the predominant color of the infirmary: "Sheets, walls, pillows, ceiling, why is it all white? Why not a nice red? Or puce?"
"Er, it's something about the color…it's supposed to be soothing? Or clean? Something of that type."
"I don't like it! It's too boring!"
"Well, er…" James was at a loss for words.
"We need color! I swear I will go mad and run amok and paint the walls myself if they don't do something about the white!"
James snorted, and reached for his Transfiguration textbook. "Yes, do that Pads. Go paint the walls yourself. Pomfrey will appreciate it…well that, or she'll recommend you for a nice long stay in St. Mungo's. Go do it."
"Don't think I won't!"
Sirius complained about boredom: "I'm so bored, Prongs. I can't do anything here! Stupid injuries. Prongggggsssss, I'm bored!"
"Padfoot, I know. And I'm bored too. Why don't you read a book? Like me."
"Because books are boring! Why would you tell someone who's bored to do something boring? That will only make them more bored."
"Oh…how silly of me." James remarked wryly.
"I'm glad you acknowledge that. Only boring people do boring things and recommend bored people to be boring!"
James turned back to his book, eyebrows raised. "Ohh-kay. I'm sure there was some sense injected in there somewhere. Hopefully."
Sirius complained about his ward-mate: "Prongs, stop reading! You're always reading, and I'm bored and want to do something. Entertain me! Plus, I'm starting to think you snore! Prongs!"
James' nostrils flared. This was starting to get old, very quick. "I'm not here to entertain you! I'm here to recuperate!" He snapped, irritably.
"But you're being so boring! Be a mate! Be fun!"
"But I'm actually trying to get work done, and study."
Sirius complained about the upcoming O.W.L.s: "We spend five years of our lives toiling at this school and it all comes down to how we do on one test! How unfair is that?"
"Well you could study and then not have to complain about it." James suggested.
Sirius gaped at him. "I did not actually hear my best friend say that—that abomination!"
James shrugged. "It was only a suggestion."
Sirius shook his head disconsolately. "I thought I knew you, mate. I thought I knew you."
Sirius complained about James' lack of a sense of adventure: "What happened to you, mate? You used to be so much fun…now you're all bitter and quiet."
"Sorry." James responded flatly. "I can't imagine why I'm bitter and quiet. Hey, Pads, you know silence isn't always a bad thing…"
Sirius whirled on him, jaw set, eyes narrowed. "Who are you and what have you done with Prongs?" Sirius demanded. "What is wrong with the Prongs I know and treasure dearly?"
James messaged his throbbing temples. "He's imaging himself unconscious, wishing for the calm and quiet that comas bring…"
Mental note: Next time I get knocked unconscious when Sirius is also hurt, STAY unconscious.
Sirius, just for variety, complained about the food he was given: "Everything is liquid! If I wanted nourishment from liquid, I'd drink water! I want real, solid food!"
James declined to comment, and went back to his Transfiguration homework.
Mental note: Check with Dumbledore to see if maybe I transfigure him into something…something that can't talk…I won't get in trouble. I'm sure I won't get in trouble. Who would blame me? Hmm…maybe I'll get an award for Special Services to the School…
"Prongs! Are you even listening to me? Pronnnnggggssssss!"
Sirius complained about his ward-mate's respective silence: "Why are you always thinking? Talk to me! I bet you're thinking about Lily, aren't you?"
James sighed…and began to think about Lily. Mental note: If I transfigure him into something Lily would like, I can give him to her. Then I would be not only doing a public service, I would be helping myself to some peace and quiet, and I would win Lily over with my charm and my unique gift…
"Stop thinking! It's not good to be so quiet and thinking all of the time. It'll lead to exhaustion…exhaustion of the brain, I'm sure!"
"Uh huh, yeah, Pads…" Lily definitely wants me. I know she does. I mean, she must, right? It would be…unnatural if she didn't.
"—if your brain got all overloaded with thoughts and exploded, it would spray on me and—"
She didn't even yell at me this time. Or throw things. Or knock me unconscious…although that might be preferable to my ordeal today. Actually, she was laughing! And smiling at me!
"—must save you from your fate, Prongs! I will take it upon myself as a personal duty! Prongs! You're thinking about her again, while I'm trying to save you from a most grisly fate. Honestly, I feel as if all of my good deeds go unnoticed!"
Lily has the prettiest smile…and her eyes are so…nice. She's got very nice eyes. The nicest...
Sirius complained about Lily: "I can't believe she brought us homework! Of all the things to bring someone in the hospital? How can you like her? I bet if you went out on a date she'd take you to a study group!"
"Hospital wing." James corrected. "It's not like you're in St. Mungo's or something. And I don't think Lily would do that…or, I hope not."
"She would, Prongs, I wouldn't put it past her. Were I you, I'd be on my guard."
"I'm sure she wouldn't take me to a study group for a date. And actually you're giving her too much credit. She'd have to say yes to a date with me first."
Sirius, eyes narrowed, stared at him shrewdly and suspiciously. "You would, wouldn't you?"
"Go to study with her if she asked you to do that for a date!"
"Don't be stupid, Padfoot." James paused, but felt compelled to add, "Do you really think she'd ask me to study with her?"
"Traitor!" Sirius roared. "I will die with the shock and disappointment of it all!"
"And that would be such a pity." James murmured.
Sirius complained about his injuries in general: "I can only use one eye. It's weird. It's like being a pirate, but it sucks and I don't get a nice booty after I put on my eyepatch."
By now, James' fingers were twitching in the direction of his pillow, itching to grab the normally soft, fluffy, comforting object and use it to smother his best friend. Well, not kill him, of course—that would be the thought of an insane person, not someone as calm and rational a creature as James—just knock him out. For a little while. Just enough so that they could both get some peace.
Mental note: Padfoot does love to sleep. He absolutely hates waking up in the morning. So really, if I, well facilitated sleep for him, he would be grateful. And if that state of his slumber happens to aid me in the process, well then so be it.
And, of course, Sirius complained about having to be in the hospital wing at all, and vehemently protested the fact that every other person in the hospital wing was allowed to leave the before he was, no matter how many times Madam Pomfrey tried explaining about the extent and seriousness of his injuries.
After about the first several hours or so of this, Madam Pomfrey got so tired of this that she cast a Silencing Charm on him. Sirius was forced to revert back to his horrible, hopeless attempt at charades to articulate all of the complaints he had not had time to verbally articulate. James almost felt sorry for him, almost. Well, not really.
James was at peace. Finally. And he would not trade the silence for all the Galleons in all the world.
And so James learned the true meaning of the phrase"silence is golden", and how sometimes unconsciousness is preferable to spending a night in the hospital wingwith Sirius. Sirius discovered that the ability to speak must not go unused or taken for granted, along with the fact that he was abyssmally horrid at charades, despite his penchant for making wild, overdramatic gestures. Lily found that James was not as intolerable as she had previously believed, at least not when he was recuperating from head injuries. And Madam Pomfrey? Well, she learned that she never wanted to keep Sirius for a prolonged stay in the hospital wing ever again.
Everyone was affected by that fateful night in the hospital wing with Sirius. And what will come of that? Well, that remains to be seen.
A/N: So, what did you all think of the story? Was it an OK ending? Should I write more short pieces like this? Please, read and review, as it is my first completed piece of HP fanfic.