A/N: I posted this several years ago, but for some reason it got deleted off my Author's Page and out of FFN completely. So I am reposting it just to keep the record straight.
(From the original Author's Notes.)
Also, you remember back in A Dog's Day, that little discussion we had about Remus' ability to transform just like his friends?
Run with it.
Timeline? Before James and Lily's murders.
Oh! Almost forgot. Credit! The idea for what Sirius did that got him into so much trouble with Lily comes from Trinity Day's story, Flying Lessons. I think I have the name and title right. It's too cute for words, people. Go read it.
And as always,
Disclaimer: All characters of the Harry Potter series (hereafter known as 'legal property') are the sole ownership of J.K. Rowling (hereafter known as 'owner of said legal property'). No infringement on any copyright of owner of said legal property of the legal property is knowing intended. Published by author (hereafter known as 'other') for entertainment purposes only. No monetary or personal gain was knowingly made by other with the publication of this story, which was based on ideas and characters created by owner of said legal property as they pertain to legal property. No plagiarism of legal property or of any ideas of the owner of said legal property was knowingly intended by other. This statement is fully transferable and is legally held binding for all chapters of the story Siriusly Bored (made easier by there only being one) as they are presented under different chapter headings and titles for individual chapters.
James Potter stood in the livingroom of his house as he watched his best friend playing with his eight-month old son, Harry. There was no doubt just from watching the two how much Sirius Black loved his godson. Sirius held the baby up over him as he lay on his back on the livingroom floor. Harry squealed with delight and waved his arms about as he gave Sirius a grin that just showed the start of teeth coming in.
James just shook his head as he watched the two continue their play.
"Sirius, are you even listening to me?" James asked.
"Of course." Sirius replied as he swung his godson above him in the air. "Aren't we, Harry?" He cooed at the baby.
Harry squealed again. "Pa-fo! Pa-fo!" He cried happily.
Sirius smiled at him. "That's right! Padfoot."
"Sirius!" James stated firmly.
"What? I'm listening." Sirius replied with a half-hearted irritated grumble as he lowered Harry back to the floor.
"Right. Then what did I say?"
Sirius rolled over on his stomach and stared up at his friend. "You were laying out every guideline imaginable to make sure that your son has no fun in his life whatsoever until he's at least twenty-five." Sirius glanced over his shoulder to see what Harry was up to. "Bad old daddy, huh, Harry?"
Harry had by now climbed onto Sirius' back and was yanking on a handful of his godfather's long black hair. One of his favorite targets.
Sirius let out a small cry of pain as Harry gave an impressively hard yank on his hair. Feeling that the game had gone far enough, Sirius tilted himself slightly, sending Harry rolling off his back and onto the rug.
Unfortunately Harry failed to let go of Sirius' hair and the result was quite unpleasant for all involved. Sirius let out a genuine cry of pain, which scared Harry and caused him to cry.
"Serves you right for bucking him off." James said, scooping up his son and trying to quiet him down before...
Just then a flurry of blue robes and red hair came blasting into the room with all the subtlety of an arriving train.
"I heard Harry cry!" Lily stated. "What's Sirius done?"
"Thank you." Sirius moaned from the floor as he rubbed his head. "Your son just tried to snatch me bald and I'm the one about to get lectured?"
Lily quickly turned to her husband. "James, did you talk to him? You said you'd talk to him."
"I did." James told his wife. "But he's not listening to me."
"I am!" Sirius protested dismally. "No flying broom. No flying motorcycle. No flying spells. No flying anything. No flying. NO FUN!" Sirius quickly stuck his tongue out at James.
"Just as long as we have that clear, Padfoot." James answered with a small smile.
Sirius simply rolled his eyes as James set his son back on the floor. Harry was now happily cooing away again.
As soon as he was on the floor, Harry made a beeline for his godfather.
"Pa-fo!" The baby cried. "Pa-fo!"
Sirius gave the baby a pleased smile, then quickly transformed into his large, black dog persona, Padfoot.
Harry squealed with laughter and plowed headlong into the shaggy, black wall of fur. Sirius quickly rolled over and the two resumed their games from before.
"Sirius." James stated.
The dog stopped his play and turned to James.
"Not too rough."
The dog's ears fell in disappointment.
Lily stepped up to defend her husband's position. "He's eight months old, Sirius, not eight years. You have to be more careful. So, no rough play, O.K.?"
The dog barked once.
"And stay earthbound for a change." She advised as she turned to leave the room.
The black dog growled low in its throat.
Lily rounded back on the dog with a half-way stern look. "Oh...now I know I didn't just hear that!" She stated in a tone as though she were addressing a disobedient child.
The dog stood for a moment staring at her, judging his chances of survival should he decide to contest the matter, but then quickly sat with his tail wagging, looking as innocent as possible.
"Such a good dog." Lily replied sweetly. "Now James won't have to take you to the pound."
Sirius whined slightly.
James laughed softly as he watched his wife leave the room.
"We'll be back soon, Padfoot. Just...try to stay out of trouble until then."
Sirius quickly transformed back to himself. "Honestly, Prongs!" He stated indignantly. "You'd think you were talking to the child instead of the babysitter."
James paused as he started to leave the room. "Sometimes I'm honestly not sure which is which." He replied with a slight smile.
"Prove me wrong."
"Hardly much left to worry about." Sirius stated. "All your list leaves is dog-fights and strip clubs."
James just shook his head as he joined his wife at the door.
"All set then?" Lily asked.
Lily leaned over and gave her son a kiss goodbye. "Now behave for Uncle Sirius, Harry." She told the baby. "And, Sirius," she added, giving him a kiss on the cheek, "don't teach my son any new words while we're gone. O.K.?"
Sirius huffed. "What have I ever done that warrants you two warning me about behaving myself every time?"
Lily looked somewhere between angry and amused. "Well, there was that incident with the broom, Sirius."
"One thing...!" Sirius defended.
"And that situation with the motorcycle." James put in helpfully.
"And that time with charmed carpet."
"And there was that table."
"And I'm not even going to bring up the doormat issue."
"Padfoot," James stated solemnly, "are we seeing a pattern here?"
"Like I said," Sirius replied, frowning, "no fun!"
James shook his head. "Somehow, I'm sure you'll think of something. Just try not to make it anything I'll have to hard of a time explaining to the magic reversal squad."
"You're faith in me is astounding."
James patted his son's head. "Watch out after him for me, Harry. For all the trouble he gets me into with your mum, he's still my best friend."
Harry happily waved bye-bye to his parents as Sirius closed the door after them.
Wandering through the small cottage, Sirius looked about for things to do and remain earthbound. But he was having a horrible time finding anything. In the meantime, Harry was rapidly getting bored with simply being totted from room to room. Finally, when they arrived back in the livingroom, Sirius turned his godson to him with a defeated look.
"All right, champ." He said. "I'm all out of ideas. What about you?"
Harry had a great idea. He quickly stuck his arms in the air and began waving them about.
"Hup! Hup!" He cried happily.
Sirius stared at him for a moment, then shook his head disappointedly. "Sorry, kiddo. No can do."
Harry looked a bit confused. Then, deciding Sirius simply hadn't understood him, tried again.
"Hup! Hup!" He cried louder. Maybe Sirius hadn't heard him. But the adult simply shook his head again.
Harry stared at Sirius for a moment. Desperate times called for desperate measures.
Harry screwed up his face and let out a air-renting cry of despair.
Sirius immediately went into panic mode, as he frequently did when Harry started crying.
"Oh! No, no. Don't so that to Uncle Sirius." He pleaded quickly. "That's not fair. It's not my fault. It was your dad. Not Uncle Sirius. You like Uncle Sirius."
Harry was pretty sure he didn't care who was to blame. He simply wanted things straighten out, which meant having them the way he wanted them. Which currently involved flying.
"All right! All right!" Sirius stated. "I know what'll cheer you up. Loathed as I am to admit it"
Sirius pulled out his wand. Harry's crying stopped almost immediately. His whole expression brightened at the sight of the polished wooden stick.
"No." Sirius answered the expectant look on his godson's face. "Not flying. But give me a minute."
Sirius pointed the wand at the fire. "Moony?" He called.
A voice answered quickly from the fire. Remus was usually sitting in front of his fire reading a book. Sirius had often commented he thought his friend did little else.
"What is it, Padfoot?" Remus Lupin asked. "I'm a bit busy at the moment."
"Too busy for your nephew?"
Suddenly Remus' figure emerged out of the fireplace.
Harry's expression quickly changed into one of delight as he squealed happily and reached out two tiny arms to Remus.
Remus obligingly took the baby from Sirius and held him up high over his head.
"What's the matter, Harry?" He cooed at the laughing infant. "Uncle Sirius can't handle a wittle, bitty baby?"
"Not when his parents put more restrictions on his then a ministry VIP." Sirius replied sullenly.
"No flying...in any form."
"Well, Padfoot...," Remus commented cautiously, "there was that ahhhh...incident last time...with the broom."
"He didn't fall off!"
"Nearly. Scared Lily just about out of her mind. You had to expect repercussions from that."
"Fine. Repercussion me. Not Harry."
"What'd they do?"
"Basically?" Sirius answered, glancing at Harry, then back at Remus. "We're grounded."
"Grounded?" Remus questioned. "Bit old for that, aren't you?"
"Not grounded-grounded. Grounded-groun...oh, never mind." Sirius gave up. "The point is, we can't leave the ground."
"Sorry to hear that. Why call me?"
"Well, you're good at thinking up things to do."
"In other words, if it doesn't involve flying you have no idea what to do with a baby?" Remus asked skeptically. Remus knew from experience that no one was better at keeping Harry entertained than Sirius.
"Not when all he wants to do is fly."
"Brought that one on yourself when you started it." Remus said unsympathetically, handing Harry back to Sirius. "Now, just think a minute. What does Harry like to do?"
Remus frowned at him. "Padfoot..."
"Yeah, yeah. We're grounded. I heard." Sirius looked off into space. "There has to be some way around that. Something they didn't think of."
"Well, if there is, you leave me out of it."
A sudden look of inspiration crossed Sirius' face. "Moony..."
Remus pulled back a step. He didn't like the way Sirius was looking at him.
Sirius gave Remus his most charming smile. "Well..., Lily and James said I couldn't take Harry flying. They never said you couldn't."
Remus literally jumped back this time. "No way!" He cried. "I value my life."
"Oh, come on, Moony." Sirius pleaded, holding Harry up in front of him. "For Harry."
"But he loves to fly!"
"And I love to live. So much so that I'd like to keep doing it for years to come. Which I won't if that baby leaves the ground floor."
Remus gave him a defiant stare. "I prefer 'self-preservationist'."
"Still spelled c-o-w-a-r-d."
"Then you take him flying, seeing as you so ambivalent to who Lily kills."
Sirius looked thoughtful again. "I haven't run out of people yet." He said.
But Sirius already had his wand out and was pointing it at the fire.
"What is it, Padfoot?" Peter Pettigrew's voice answered from the fire.
"I need some help."
Peter's short figure suddenly stepped out of the fire. "With wha..." But his gaze immediately fell on Harry. "Harry!" Peter stated, taking the infant from Sirius. "How are you , Harry? Padfoot still can't handle a baby?"
"I can handle him just fine, Wormtail." Sirius replied with a frown. "What I can't do is take him flying."
"Forget how?" Peter asked in a half serious tone, turning to Sirius.
"Lily and James grounded us."
"Well, Sirius," Peter stated in a quieter tone, "there was that incident with the broom..."
"Does everybody think I have amnesia?" Sirius stated in exasperation. "I remember, O.K.?" Sirius quickly turned his smile on Peter. "But you see, Wormtail, Lily and James only said that I couldn't take Harry flying. They never said you couldn't."
Peter practically saw the warning flags flying in front of him, as anyone who'd known Sirius more than an hour would whenever they saw that particular smile.
"Why me?" He asked, turning to Remus for help.
"I already turned him down." Remus offered.
"My parents have planned a huge party for my next birthday. I'd like to be there for it."
"Will see that I'm not if I'm the reason her son goes any further from the ground than he can currently jump."
Peter quickly handed Harry back to Sirius.
"I just wanna see the sunrise, Padfoot." He stated earnestly.
Sirius took Harry back from Peter. "Come on, Wormtail. Harry loves to fly."
Peter turned a regretting look to Harry. "Sorry, Harry. But Uncle Peter loves to live. Which he won't be doing any more of if your mum catches me taking you flying."
"Coward." Sirius stated.
"I'm forming a club if you're interested, Peter." Remus offered quickly.
"What's it called?"
"Cowards who want to live."
"I'm in." Peter said, heading for the fire. "See you at the meetings."
Sirius stared at the fire in disgust. "Fine. Disappoint Harry."
"Sorry, Padfoot." Remus replied from behind him. "We're not going to help you get us killed."
"'Killed' is a very strong word, Moony." Sirius answered, still staring at the fire. "You know darn good and well she'd just hurt you a lot."
"Sirius, face up to it. You can't take him flying. We'll just have to think of something else."
"And we're back to where we started. Like what?"
"We should be able to think of something." Remus suggested, taking Harry from Sirius again. "In the meantime, let's take him out back to the yard. At least let him get some fresh air."
Sirius obediently followed Remus out the back door and into the large back yard behind the cottage.
As soon as Remus set Harry down on the soft grass he turned to Sirius and clapped his hands.
"Pa-fo. Pa-fo." He shouted expectantly.
"You're up." Remus said with a smile.
Sirius gave Remus a superior look. "You'll note, please, who he always asks for."
Remus stared back at the large black dog now sitting on the ground before him.
"Oh, wipe that look off your face." Remus stated firmly. "That's only because he's never seen me."
The dog barked once, then turned quickly to the baby who had just grabbed a handful of his coat, pulled himself to his feet, and was now leaning against the large black mass of fur.
But as Harry was attempting to crawl up Sirius' back, a small, wet object bumped him from behind on the arm.
Harry turned about to find himself facing a second large...well..., dog. But this one looked a good deal different from his usual playmate. This one's coat was light brown, not black. And it had larger eyes and ears and...teeth.
A lot of teeth.
Harry stared at the new-comer with wide, saucer shaped eyes as his mouth hung open.
The baby suddenly let out a shriek of fright and pulled behind the large black dog, clinging to it's fur for dear life.
Sirius quickly transformed back to himself amid howls of laughter, pointing a finger at Remus.
"Very good, Moony." He gasped. "You scared the kid half to death."
The wolf whined softly, looking very dejected.
Sirius calmed down a little as he turned to find Harry, who was burying himself deeply in his robes now. He reached around and pulled the frightened child into his lap.
"All right. All right." He said, pulling Harry closer to him for comfort. "It just takes a little introduction, that's all." Sirius turned his eyes back to Remus. "Come on, Moony. Show him how it works."
Sirius had turned Harry about to face the large wolf, who before the infant's frightened stare, transformed back into Remus.
Harry sat in stunned amazement for a moment, then suddenly let out a happy squeal and clapped his hands.
Remus quickly transformed back in front of Harry, who this time wasted no time in running over to the large, brown wolf and wrapping his hands in its soft fur.
The wolf lifted its head and snorted at Sirius.
But the wolf suddenly gave a sharp yelp. Turning it head, it watched as Harry gave it's tail another solid yank. It yelped again and pulled its tail free and tucked it protectively between its legs.
"That won't work." Sirius warned. "He'll still make a try for it. Think long and hard about that."
The wolf did. And from the expression in its eyes, Sirius could tell it didn't like the possible answer. And so obligingly, and with a defeated expression, the wolf pulled its tail back out and obligingly wagged in in front of the grabbing hands.
Several tail pulls later, one that came away with a handful of fur, Remus finally tucked his tail away again and sat on it.
"Big baby." Sirius commented.
Remus transformed back. "Excuse me!" He stated hotly. "But I don't see you letting him snatch your backside bald."
"That's because he knows better. You don't pull Uncle Sirius' tail."
Remus turned to Harry, who was watching the two men expectantly.
"Harry, don't pull Uncle Remus' tail."
Sirius snorted. "Oh, yeah. That'll make an impression."
Unfortunately, it did.
Harry screwed up his face and let out another air renting howl.
"Wants his toy back." Sirius explained with a happy smile to a very dismal looking Remus.
"Look," Sirius explained over the infant's howling, "wouldn't it be a lot easier on you backside just to take him flying?"
"No!" Remus stated firmly. "And I think it's about time anyway for you to let him have a few handfuls of your hair, Padfoot."
"Not by my watch."
"Fine." Remus stated sharply. With that Remus quickly transformed back into the large, brown wolf. Reaching over, he grabbed Harry by the waistband of the pants he was wearing and headed for the house.
"Hey!" Sirius shouted after them. "Where are you going with that baby, Moony?"
The wolf ignored him and continued to head for the house. But it was stopped several yards short of the door by the large black dog, who growled menacingly at it.
The wolf stood it's ground.
Harry, not sure what was going on between the two, and caring just about as much, was getting bored just hanging from the wolf's mouth. Reaching out, he quickly grabbed hold of Padfoot's nose.
Forgetting himself, the wolf let out a barking laugh.
As soon as Harry hit the ground, the black dog grabbed him in a similar manner and took off across the yard.
Looking up, the wolf growled and followed in close pursuit.
The chase continued for several seconds before Moony managed to cut Padfoot off at the fence.
"Drop that baby!" Remus demanded as he transformed back.
The black dog obediently placed Harry on the ground.
But as soon as Remus reached for Harry, Padfoot grabbed him again and took off at a run, Harry laughing all the way as he bounced about at the end of Padfoot's muzzle.
Remus stood at the fence still, shaking his head as he watched the black dog finally stop in the middle of the yard and set Harry down carefully on the grass. Once his charge was safely seated on the ground, the black dog laid down next to him and turned back to see what Remus was doing.
But as soon as he looked up,. Padfoot found himself taking a solid hit that rolled him over the ground several times before he managed to right himself. The first thing that came in view, Padfoot took hold of in his mouth and bit down on.
The wolf gave a barking cry of surprise as the set of teeth chomped down on it's tail.
For the action the dog took a solid hit from a back foot to the side of the face.
And so the mock fight continued for several minutes. Safely off to the side Harry watched the scene with a growing sense of apprehension. He knew the two creatures knew each other. But whatever was going on between them, he was fairly certain he didn't like. And after things went on for a few minutes, Harry decided it was time to put a stop to things the only way he knew how.
But suddenly something in the background caught his attention. A bright smile lit the baby's face as he reached two tiny arms out into the air.
"Da!" Harry cried happily.
The two canines abruptly stopped fighting, freezing in their current positions on the ground, each ahold of some part of the other.
James Potter slowly walked up to the scene and looked things over.
"So," he said finally after a long sigh, picking his son up off the ground, "dog fight it was?"
Being faster than any of the four had been, Sirius transformed back as he got quickly to his feet, managing to end the process standing before his friend looking utterly innocent.
"I had no choice in the matter, Prongs!" Sirius replied quickly, pointing at the wolf who was now sitting next to him. "Moony out and out refused to go to the strip club!"
James tried to think of something to say, but finally gave up in exasperation and simply shook his head as he turned and headed back to the house, Harry leaned over his father's shoulder as he flapped his fingers 'bye-bye' at the two.
Remus abruptly appeared next to Sirius.
"You never said anything about a strip club." He stated in his ever mild voice.
"There's a fairly decent one over in Camdale." Sirius said in reply.
"Wanna see if Prong's can go?" Sirius ask as the two headed towards the house.
"Yeah. But make him pay for the first round. He owes us for babysitting."