Title: Just There

Warnings: High levels of parenthesis abuse. If this terrifies the living daylights out of you, you have been forewarned.

Rating: So G it hurts. Or K, if you prefer.

Notes: This was born when a friend (Adonais — she's lurking in my favourite author's list, and she's got her half of the stories born on this fateful night posted there) and I decided to give each other marauders-related prompts to get the creative juices flowing. This was the first of many one shots born that night. I'm not going to give you the prompt for this one, because I didn't read it properly and wound up cheating instead of following it correctly. But I liked the end result anyway. Constructive criticism is appreciated.

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Peter disliked Defence Against the Dark Arts classes. James and Sirius loved them, they seemed to find the idea of facing dark creatures down to be thrilling. Peter didn't think so. He suspected that if he ever had to face one down, he'd be too terrified to move, let alone fight. He'd voiced this once, but Sirius had (unthinkingly) responded that he already dealt with one dark creature every month.

The dark creature of mention was currently recovering in the hospital wing, and it was Peter's turn to take notes for him. Peter hated taking notes for Remus — they always seemed inadequate. Remus never complained, of course, but Peter's notes were never neat, and almost always Remus would have to spent time out of class talking to his professors, trying to sort out what Peter's chicken scrawls on the subject of cheering charms, or swelling potions were supposed to mean. He never mentioned the inadequacies of the notes that they took for him, he was far too polite for that, but it didn't stop Peter from feeling useless.

Today was the worst of all. Today they were covering werewolves. Peter was silently pulling favours with any and all celestial deities willing to give him a reprieve so that he wouldn't say something stupid to give Remus away. He was twitching with the anxiety.

James was calm. James never worried. Peter suspected that the day James Potter worried endlessly about something would be the day the universe blew up. Peter wished he had James Potter's cool-under-pressure attitude, Sirius' ability to roll with the punches, or even Remus' (apparently) unrelenting patience.

But he didn't. He was just Peter, and as such, he was shaking with nervousness, and completely unable to even try to focus on taking notes for Remus. Oh, well, it didn't didn't really matter, he supposed, Remus probably knew more about werewolves than the whole class put together.

He wondered if any of the people in the class were figuring it out. The thought made him twitch nervously again, and he started frantically chewing on the end of his quill to keep himself from squeaking in trepidation. He wouldn't have figured it out. He didn't. James and Sirius figured it out, he had just happened to be there at the time. Still, Remus had trusted him with his secret, and surely that counted for something? But he wasn't smart like James and Sirius, nor clever and bookish like Remus. He wasn't anything really.

Sirius was funny. He was the one always hanging with (and occasionally off of) James, and the two of them would create pranks that boggled Peter's mind. Remus was the more bookish of the group, something which, in the eyes of the teachers, made him the most respectable of the group. In truth, this was a bit laughable, as Remus was just as witty, clever and prank-loving as the rest, he was just far better at disguising it. Even more than that, Remus was the one they all looked out for. They all looked after Remus (mostly because of his terrible habit of working far harder than was even remotely sane, then passing out from exhaustion at thoroughly inconvenient times, a habit Sirius was forever trying to cure him of. Unfortunately Sirius' idea of "curing" involved stealing all of Remus' books, badgering him to no end, and tying him to the bed in the dorm room, wearing just his boxers, then inviting various girls up to "visit" him), and because of his "furry little problem" (or so James called it, anyway. Peter was inclined to partially disagree — or rather, he would be if he could ever bring himself to speak an opinion dissonant to James Potter's out-loud, as he thought it was not quite so "little." He did, however, agree that it was most certainly furry, and definitely a problem.)

James, on the other hand, was … Peter wasn't quite sure how to describe James Potter. Awesome came to mind. Amazing, too. James was popular, smart, good-looking (though, not that Peter was doing the looking. He blushed at the thought), funny, a bloody good Quidditch player, and everything Peter wasn't.

Peter was the tag-along. Peter was "just there". And, barely listening to the discussion on werewolf snouts going on around him, Peter realised that he didn't really mind. It was right where he belonged.

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