The story thus far:
After being advised not to make close friends at school, Remus and his dorm mates get off to a rocky start. Remus makes a friend in Lily, and they present a united front when it comes to Sirius and James. The two have decided that it is due time for some payback in the form of their own prank.
Slash, eventual RLSB
Don't own it. Now I own my own couch though...
Yeah, so I am a little slow on the updates. A few years late but really, what is a few years between friends? Thankfully I had a little voice in my head saying, "update!" The voice's name is Malo919 and she edited and emailed until I posted. Many thanks!
The Worst Year Yet
Chapter 13 – Fifth Year – More Fun with Puns
Lunchtime on Prank Day had arrived and Remus was worried. His roommates hadn't yet discovered that they were being pranked and he just knew they would find out soon. He worried they would realize that Remus was the one who had finally decided to return the favor and prank them back. Looking down at the bread and soup in front of him, he decided he wasn't hungry after all. He wondered if the professors would be disappointed in him for disrupting classes with such a childish stunt. When he looked up, his gaze caught that of his Arithmancy professor who smiled benignly across the room.
"Lily, what if everyone finds out it was us," Remus whispered.
She just rolled her eyes and continued to eat.
Remus chewed his lip as he looked around the Great Hall, trying not to look at the staff table. "I can't believe no one has told them yet. This is so much longer than I ever expected. I hope the potion and spells hold out for the full day."
"You worry too much. Just sit back and enjoy." Lily was smiling widely at all the chaos.
The Marauders walked in, uncaring of the whispers around them. As they meandered toward their usual spot at the end of the Gryffindor table farthest from the teachers, the three boys tried to ignore all the attention they were getting. As they turned around to settle in, the students around them leaned in to read the newest messages printed on the backs of the robes.
The only substitute for good manners is fast reflexes graced the back of James' robes. Remus grinned. Suddenly, it was all okay again.
"What?" huffed Peter, turning to a student at the Hufflepuff table who had been laughing and pointing.
"Nothing. Hey, Potter. Catch!" He threw an apple at James. When the quidditch player caught the fruit handily, instead of being impressed, there was laughter from much of the Hufflepuff table.
By the end of lunch, Siruis, James, and Peter knew for certain there was something strange going on. A prank was being played on them but they weren't sure exactly what it is.
James leaned in towards his two best friends. "Who do we ask about this? The Hufflepuffs have been awfully unforgiving recently…"
"Let's try Frank and Remus. And maybe a few of Padfoot's nicer ex-girlfriends. Peter, what about that kid who lives next to your second cousin? Someone is bound to helps us out."
Unfortunately for the Marauders, Lily had already gotten to Frank's girlfriend, Alice, and the Hufflepuff girl told him in no uncertain terms that he had better not help his Gryffindor roommates.
Sirius picked up his bag and headed down the table. "Frank!" he said jovially, arms wide in greeting.
"Sorry mate, can't help you," Frank replied, wincing slightly as Alice looked pointedly at him. He smiled in sympathy at the two and went back to talking to his cousin and his girlfriend.
"Foiled by Hufflepuffs, again," muttered Sirius.
"It's always the ones who seem so sweet… Speaking of which," added Peter as he motioned farther down the table to a group of girls.
"Sweetheart," Sirius called out hopefully to one of his ex-girlfriends.
"Don't you dare sweetheart me, Black. I spent my entire allowance on that dress."
Sirius frowned and turned to James. "People are still upset at up about that whole Yule prank. Strange."
"For every action, there is a complete and total overreaction," James replied, rolling his eyes.
Just then, another saying came onto Sirius' back. "I'm not conceited, I'm just better than everyone else." No one could hold in their laughter, especially the ex-girlfriend. Sirius scowled.
"Stop feeling sorry for yourself," laughed James.
"Hey, self pity is the only pity I'm likely to get! And where did Lupin disappear to? He was here just a bit ago."
After his clever escape from the Great Hall, Remus spent the day avoiding his roommates and trying to stay under the radar. At the same time he helped Lily spread rumors about overheard conversations and reminded everyone about the history of pranks his two roommates had. Lily was much more effective when it came to that sort of thing but she had given him pointers and he was fairly sure he was doing everything well.
Lily was having the time of her life. She and a few of Sirius Black's more bitter ex-girlfriends had taken it upon themselves to follow the two boys around, laughing at all the jokes and making it very apparent that something was going on. Meanwhile, they were on hand each time one of the two boys tried to get someone new to explain things to them and they did their best to foil each attempt.
"Are you stalking me? Because that would be brilliant." James grinned unrepentantly at the redheaded girl.
Lily sniffed, replying, "In your dreams, Potter."
"Every night and sometimes during History class," he agreed with a chuckle.
James didn't seem as bothered by the prank as Lily had thought or perhaps hoped he would be. In fact, James seemed to be almost as amused as he was curious. Sirius, on the other hand, wasn't faring so well.
"What?" Sirius had turned around and was glaring at some older students who had been laughing at the latest writing on his back.
"Nothing, Black. Do you have some sort of attitude problem or something?" Everyone around started laughing loudly and Sirius looked even more annoyed. He couldn't see that the back of his robes sported the phrase, I don't have an attitude problem, it's supposed to be this way.
"This is the worst thing to happen to someone in the history of things happening to someone," Sirius muttered to Peter, who was busy trying to weigh the relative merits of abandoning his friends to hide in the greenhouse for the rest of the day.
Because of their troublemaking history, the three Gryffindor boys were required to sit in the front of the Charms classroom. Today this worked out particularly well because that meant everyone could see their backs. Every five minutes, the class started snickering. After several years of practice teaching the Marauders, Professor Daymeker knew for sure that the boys were up to their usual tricks. They had to repeat several times that they had nothing to do with it, but, of course, they were not believed.
After, I wondered why the bludger was getting bigger. Then it hit me appeared on one robe while People don't talk about me behind my back… that I am aware of sprang to life on the other robe, the resulting laughter caused the professor to dismiss class early.
"I swear these little monsters are going to push me into an early retirement," she said under her breath. If any of the students heard her mumbling, they ignored it favor of running out of the classroom for an extra five minutes of free time.
The next class didn't go any better for the unfortunate Gryffindors. Usually, the fact that the Potions professor looked the other way during pranks worked in their favor. Not today. The Gryffindors and Slytherins were a notoriously difficult grouping but for once they were on the same page. Though there fewer guffaws and more smirks on the green side of the room, all of it was directed at James and Sirius.
As Remus waited for a turn to gather erumpment toenails for his potion, he whispered, "Severus, this is the best revenge you and the Slytherins have ever could have done."
Snape looked at him, considering the words suspiciously. Remus smiled as innocently as he could manage. He decided he didn't care if Lupin knew more than he was saying about the prank because either way, he could take credit. A slow smile spread across his face before he promptly got all the Slytherins in the room firmly behind the prank.
"The End Times are upon us! Drought, famine, and Snape smiling…" Sirius muttered dejectedly, catching a glance from Remus to Snape.
Remus almost felt bad when, because of the distraction of constant giggling from the other students, both James and Sirius nearly blew up their cauldrons. He had to remind himself how many times they had thrown a dungbomb into his potion or done something equally obnoxious, ruining his own results. Remus felt better after reminding himself about a particular time when he had been completely covered in sticky green goo from a cauldron explosion. It not only ruined his robe, but also turned his hair a strange shade of puce for nearly a week. He wondered for a moment what Sirius would look like with green hair but decided he had better focus on his own potion before he spoiled it. Though he managed a good potion, many did not, caused by laughing too hard at the procession of signs on the backs:
Warning: lewdly inclined. Enter at your own risk.
There are very few personal problems that cannot be solved by a suitable application of hexes and curses.
When I open my mouth, it seems that this is only to change whichever foot was previously in there.
The Slytherins had been spreading the word that they would be very unhappy at the person who explained things to Black and Potter. This went a long way to helping keep the boys in the dark about the prank. Remus had figured that the trick would be over by lunchtime (though of course he had planned for all day, just in case) but it was nearing the end of the academic school day and still no one had told. It was amazing that things were turning out even better than he had expected.
Sirius was not feeling quite so amazed. Asking Frank again didn't help it either.
"Listen, Black. You brought this on yourself."
"I know I did, but that's no reason for me to suffer!"
"Surely you love pranks."
"Not this prank and don't call me Shirley."
Both Sirius and James were starting to let the pressure of the day get to them. Even the notoriously laid-back Potter was getting jumpy trying to figure out what was going on. They looked at any surface that had a reflection and stopped in between classes to check the mirror in the bathroom. The boys asked everyone they knew about what was going on and so far, had not gotten a satisfactory answer. Peter was completely confused while the other two were becoming anxious and were jumping at their own shadows.
It was hilarious to watch.
So, because everything was going perfectly, Remus had to worry about it.
'He deserves this,' he thought to himself, though his inner voice didn't sound particularly convinced. 'Just think of all those times he and Potter did something even worse to you. Though really, it isn't very nice of you to ruin their day.' He sighed. 'But their actions did warrant this sort of response. Even taking into account the fact that they are already having a terrible week with everyone so upset at them. Which is too bad, really. They did bring it on themselves though. But Sirius has been looking a bit upset… And of course you're worrying about Sirius when Lily is likely to die of laughter. After your best friend dies, the Of teachers will investigate find out this is your fault, and you will get kicked out of school and live in a box for the rest of your life. I hope you're happy.' Remus paused to consider his train of thought. 'Wow, my inner voice needs to calm down."
Remus turned around, surprised at being pulled out of his inner monologue.
"Can you tell me what's going on?" Sirius looked at him with large, beguiling, grey eyes while Remus looked around for an escape route. They were practically alone in the hallway. Remus idly wondered how Sirius had managed to lose Lily and the other girls who had been following him all day, then reminded himself they were probably still laughing themselves to tears.
"Err…" Saying no was a bit more difficult than he would have thought. Usually Remus was quite good at the whole silent stare thing, but usually, he wasn't so busy feeling guilty.
"Please? This is killing me!" Sirius sniffled and took a step closer. If not for the amused glint in his eye, anyone might have been completely convinced he was on the verge of tears.
Remus bit his lip and looked around for a distraction or an escape.
Sirius changed tactics. With a sudden bright grin, he lowered his voice conspiratorially and said, "I promise I won't tell anyone it was you who told. The person who planned this will never find out."
Choking on a nervous laugh, Remus could only reply with a negative shake of his head.
"Please," Sirius repeated, sensing that Remus was starting to break. He used the same tone that had worked so well a few days before when Remus had helped him earlier that week in Care of Magical Creatures class. "Please?" he tried one more time.
"Umm, see, the thing is…" Suddenly a hand covered his mouth. Behind Remus, a confident voice asserted, "He's busy right now. Stop harassing him, Black."
"Come on," the boy in question whined, turning to the red headed girl with her hand still firmly planted over her friend's mouth.
"Just a hint?" Sirius shouted as Lily dragged Remus away.
"Any other day I would say no, but today I'll just go ahead and say no."
As they rounded the corner, Lily finally removed her hand from Remus' mouth. She frowned sternly at him. "Remus Jonathan Lupin, what did I tell you about talking to him today and not letting him make you feel sorry for him?"
"I know," Remus replied sheepishly, scuffing his toe on the ground. "You sound like my mum." he added, grinning.
Remus peeked back around the corner to see if his roommate had left. On the retreating Gryffindor's back was, I just moved you to the top of my 'To Do List.'
With a smile and a shrug, he turned to catch up with his best friend. What a day!
"Whoever pranked us today was brilliantly clever. When we find out who it was, we should make friends with them and plan pranks together. Imagine the things we could do. The terrible, terrible things!"