Title: Midnight Inanity
Author: Omnicat v''v
Spoilers & Desirable Foreknowledge: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
Warnings: Light swearing and lots of innuendo.
Pairings: Hints of Remus Lupin x Nymphadora Tonks and Ginny Weasley x Harry Potter.
Disclaimer: None of J.K. Rowling's creations are mine.
Summary: Ginny and Hermione sneak down for a midnight snack at Grimmauld Place and accidentally overhear a conversation between Moony and Padfoot. They find out that the Marauders are still very much alive in those two...
Author's Note: Plot? What Plot?
"I said 'hm', didn't I?"
"Yes, well, last night you went on with 'oh Harry', so I thought I'd better check."
"Eh, never mind. What I meant to ask - well, you see, I can't sleep, and I was wondering if you, uhm..."
"Let me guess; kitchen raid."
"Well, I didn't want to put it like that, but yes."
"Aw, I wouldn't deny you an excuse to do something this vulgar while still pretending it wasn't your idea."
"Ginny! That's not - really, I didn't -"
Ginny laughed as she flung the covers back and swung her legs over the edge of the bed. "It's okay, Hermione. Actually, I was thinking of doing the same thing. Let's go."
After a few moments of fumbling in the dark, they found their slippers and house-coats, and after figuring out which item belonged to which witch, they quietly stole out of their room and into the hallway. They crossed the landing on tiptoe, ears pricked up and eyes wide to catch as much of the scant light as possible.
As they passed the shrunken house-elf heads, Ginny quietly asked: "What kept you up?"
"Thoughts. Worries. You?"
"The same. Lately I just can't seem to stop. All the more reason for warm butterbeer and chocolate cake, right?"
"My thoughts exactly."
The two girls smiled at each other in the dark. After a short pause in the hallway to make sure nobody - especially Mrs Black's portrait - had heard them, they descended the stairs to the crypt-like kitchen. With her hand already stretched out towards the door, Hermione suddenly gestured for Ginny to stop. "Shh! Listen."
It seemed the kitchen was already occupied.
"Pineapple?" a male voice said with great distaste.
"It was not my idea." came the response. This was another male voice, though not as deep as the first. It was actually rather hoarse. "Believe me, that stuff is bad enough to begin with."
"But still... pineapple. That has got to be the most obvious sign that the man's a nutter."
"I'm sure Dumbledore had the best of intentions..."
Ginny looked across at Hermione and whispered: "Isn't that professor Lupin?"
"And the other one sounds like Sirius." Hermione said with a distracted nod of the head. Her brow was furrowed in confusion.
"Yeah, we all know about Dumbledore's 'good intentions'. Looks more like detentions to me." the voice they guessed was Sirius' groused.
"It is for your own good, Padfoot."
"Definitely Sirius and Lupin. Padfoot was Sirius's Marauder name, wasn't it?" Hermione said in a low voice. Ginny nodded.
"You know what's for my good? Letting me out of this hell-hole, that's what! I haven't seen unfiltered sunlight in weeks."
"Ah, now I see what's bothering you. You're afraid you'll end up looking like Snape."
"You make it sound like I'm some type of dandy, vain and shallow."
"Correction, you make it sound like you're some type of dandy. I merely come to conclusions."
"I'm a guy, Moony. You know that perfectly well. Try again."
"Better, but still untrue. I don't like to give my girls away."
"I'm British, Moony!"
"Underpaid man whore."
"I'm not getting paid at all! It's a bloody injustice."
Ginny and Hermione exchanged wide-eyed glances.
"What are they doing?" they simultaneously said, though Hermione sounded more confused and Ginny more gleeful.
"Bastard." Lupin said.
"You know I consider that to be a compliment, don't you?" Sirius countered.
"Oh, I give up! What on Earth would be make decent insult for you?"
"Fleabag. I keep myself perfectly clean whenever I have the chance, thankyouverymuch. Fleabag would be an insult. Your turn."
"To insult myself, you mean?"
"Oh, that's easy. Waif."
"The most gentlemanly waif I've ever seen! Cheers, Moony!" Ginny and Hermione could make out the faint sounds of two clinking goblets.
"Or old." Lupin continued dully.
"Hey, you're not turning serious on me now, are you? Here, have another one of these. Look at it as a cure."
"Monster." Lupin said, in the same tone as before.
"Moony," Sirius sighed mock-tiredly. "How many times do I have to keep repeating Prongs? I don't like having to steal someone else's lines, especially when they're dead. You are not a monster, you just have a furry little problem."
"I have not one, but two furry little problems."
"Huh?" There was a moment of silence before Sirius said: "Why are you looking at me like that?"
"Guess." Hermione had to admire Lupin's poker-voice.
After a few more moments of silence, Sirius let out a wounded cry. "Moony! Don't you love Padfoot anymore?"
Hermione and Ginny exchanged high-eyebrowed, twitchy-mouthed glances before Lupin said: "You do realise how wrong that sounded, didn't you?"
"No. Why? I'm not a cat animagus, am I? Aw, Moony, you break my heart when you look at me like that."
"Whatever, Padfoot. Whatever."
Another silence, in which Hermione and Ginny tried to make the corners of their mouths to go down, accidentally looked at each other, and were forced to give up.
Eventually Sirius spoke again. "I'll have you know that when I decide to become a problem, I do not limit myself to being a 'little problem'. Little is not my style. Nothing about me is in any way 'little'."
"Really, nothing at all?"
"Nothing indeed. I cause big trouble, and am quite well endowed."
The girls' mouths fell open and Lupin suppressed a laugh. "Liar."
Ginny pressed her hands to her mouth to keep from squeaking.
"What are you implying, Mr Moony?" Sirius said with a growl.
"Oh, nothing. Nothing at all, Mr Padfoot."
"If I remember correctly, mine was longer than yours by a good half inch."
"We had more alcohol in our systems than a House-Elf on firewhiskey! You don't honestly think those measurements were accurate? Oh good grief Pads, Prongs's result was two feet!"
"That was just because he was thinking of Lily the entire time."
"Wands do not react to sexual arousal, my dear Padfoot."
Hermione and Ginny could have died...
"Oh, but I wasn't referring to that time with the wands! I meant the other time we took measurements."
...Hermione and Ginny very nearly did die.
Only when Lupin spoke again did they realise that he must be doubled over with silent laughter. "We were even more wasted then."
"Now that you mention it, we were." Sirius said fondly. "That was your fault, you know - it took two entire bottles of Ogden's finest to get you out of your pants."
Lupin lost his battle against full-blown laughter. "Did you ever realise," he hiccupped. "that the only reason I didn't collapse from alcohol poisoning, was my 'furry little problem'?"
"Ah, we figured as much. Always took ages to get you plastered. You never did get a hangover, either. See, there's some good to being a werewolf. You get to be the one to take advantage of girls in pubs, instead of the other way around like they do nowadays."
"I wouldn't know about that." Lupin said, sounding calm enough now to make his usual brand of tongue in cheek comments. "Picking up random women in pubs isn't my style, as you might remember."
"In hindsight, you were right before. You're an old sod, Moony. Have been from the moment you entered puberty."
"I haven't seen you do much clubbing either lately, though. How do you know such things? Remember - no points for something you make up as you go if you present it as a fact."
"Well, you see, I've got this cousin, name's Tonks, you might have met her? Thought so. Now she knows how to have fun! She's very knowledgeable about such things. The girl can be quite the looker when she wants to. I hear the lads are lining up for her. Are you alright Moony?" From the sound of it, Lupin had just spewed whatever it was he was drinking across the table.
"Acha, ack - I'm fine." he said hoarsely.
"Good." Sirius said just a bit too cheerfully. "There's no need to worry about Tonks and boys, though."
"She's not a lesbian, is she?" Lupin sounded horrified by the idea.
Sirius sniggered. "Nah. Gosh, Moony, I never knew you to be a homophobe."
"That's because I am not homophobic."
"Then what's with the red face, eh?"
Lupin spluttered incoherently, making Sirius laugh.
"Hey, it's nothing to be ashamed of. If she wasn't Andromeda's daughter I'd be flirting with her myself."
"I am not flirting with Nymphadora!"
"Oh, shove it, Moony. We spent seven years in the same dorm." Sirius adopted a 'scary' tone of voice. "I know your secret code."
"There is nothing going on between me and Nymphadora." Lupin said in an overly neutral voice. "And even if there was any attraction between us, I would rather go straight to the biting her part than to lead her on in a false sense of promise."
Sirius let out a peal of bark-like laughter. "If only you could see your face right now!"
A very pointed silence followed.
"Look at it from the bright side, Moony: when you make your move on Tonks, you'll finally get to put your 'wand' to good use. If it wasn't a very Black thing to do, I'd make a bet that she's just as spunky and energetic between the sheets as she is everywhere else."
"That's no way to talk about a lady, Padfoot." Lupin said with obvious disapproval. Ginny wished she could see the faces of the two men in the kitchen, while Hermione was torn between wanting to put her hands over her ears and sing 'LALALALALA, I CAN'T HEAR YOU!' to block out the sound of her former professor and Harry's godfather acting like teenagers... and not wanting to miss a word that was being said.
"Hey, something just occurred to me. If you were to marry Tonks, we'd become family! Finally, some interesting new people in that mouldy blood-pool of mine. Ted's a bit of a bore, to be honest. Tonks really takes after Dromeda."
"Merlin, no! Anything that is a mix between me and Nymphadora would be entirely too much like you. That's just another reason to keep her at a distance, Padfoot. Hey, wait a minute - I said there's nothing going on between me and Nymphadora!"
"Yeah, yeah, you just keep saying that, Moony. One day she'll get tired of it and slap you for it. There's only so much she'll tolerate from a man who keeps calling her 'Nymphadora', even if she is so madly in love as to let him do that. You best be prepared. But actually, I was thinking that a mix between you and Tonks would be something along the lines of multicoloured werewolf cubs..."
"That is not a laughing matter, Sirius."
"Here, have another one. You need to lighten up."
"You don't think you can feed me drunk and I'll just throw my inhibitions out the window, do you?"
"As a matter of fact, I do, and I will. Sit down, Moony."
A moment of silence, and then the scraping of a chair. "You, Sirius Black, are an insufferable prat."
"And you better know it."
"Do you have any idea how much I would like to empty this goblet over your head at the moment?"
"Yes, that's why I want you to sit down; from your seat, you wouldn't be able to pour anything over my head, you'd have to resort to throwing it at me."
"Like that?" Lupin asked innocently.
"Exactly like that." Sirius deadpanned.
Ginny was, by this point, lying on her back, shaking with silent laughter. "If only Mum could hear this!" she whispered to Hermione in between uncontrollable giggles and gasping breaths.
"Was that really necessary, Moony?" Sirius whined. "This was my most comfortable pyjama set."
"You asked for it."
"Liar, liar pants on fire, Padfoot."
"Well, actually Moony, my pants are soaking wet, just like the rest of my clothes, so it's unlikely that they'll catch fire anytime soon."
"Aw, too bad."
"Merlin, you are sadistic all of the sudden, aren't you?"
"You asked for that too."
"Ha, so I was right!"
"You don't resort to childish animosity unless you can truly no longer stand the fact that you are wrong, Mr Moony. Which means that you are deeply infatuated with my dearest cousin Tonks."
"I am n-"
"Just admit it."
"Admit it, Remus."
"I'll stop bugging you once you confess to liking her."
A moment of silence. "Alright. Nymphadora is a charming young witch, like you said."
"Hey, what kind of confession was that? You could mean anything!"
"Not in my language." Lupin said seriously.
There was silence, both behind and in front of the kitchen door. Hermione and Ginny exchanged glances, aware that they were suddenly eavesdropping on something private, of a kind of intimacy they should hold in proper respect.
"Let's go back upstairs." Hermione mouthed. Ginny nodded, and they slowly and softly made their way out of the kitchen area. After tentatively closing the door of their shared room, the witches looked at each other.
"Well." Hermione said after scraping her throat.
"No butterbeer and chocolate cake." Ginny said with an awkward shrug of her shoulders. Then she grinned. "But boy, that was some entertainment!"
PSAN: The end... You didn't think it was going to happen anymore, did you? But now that I've been so gracious as to finish the insanity up, would there be a chance that you'll review? (Reviews are like air: highly addictive.)