Title: The Notable and Extravagant One-Man Riot of '75
Summary: Sirius just wants to cheer Remus up, since he's pants at comforting.
Characters/Pairings: Sirius, Remus, assorted characters (R/S pre-slash)
Genre: Humour/Romance
Rating/Warnings: PG
Wordcount: 1 330
I broke my word-limit. *facepalm* Anyhow, L wanted Sirius playing a prank to cheer up Remus, one that didn't involve torture of Slytherins. I think I managed it. *g*


Remus has a very nice smile. When he smiles, his eyes get all crinkly and sparkly, and his cheeks sort of squeeze and round, and his nose scrunch up there between the eyes, and his lips quirk up and stretch and if he's really happy he'll even let slightly wonky teeth show. When described it sounds odd, but it really is just nice. So that Remus is sad and not smiling, Sirius decides, is not on.

"Oi, Moony, what's the matter?"

Apparently James thinks so as well.

"Hm?" Remus looks up from his Quidditch magazine, wearing that neutrally friendly expression that meant he's most definitely not neutrally friendly. "Oh, nothing's wrong. I'm just fine."

"Bollocks," Sirius says immediately.

"What he said," Peter agrees, nodding towards Sirius as he comes up to them.

Cornered by the three of them, Remus sighs and puts away the magazine. "I got an owl last week, alright? Rea's died. She was our dog. Well, she was dad's dog, really, she adored him, but she was our dog nonetheless. She's— she was very pretty, an Irish Setter, never stayed out of water."

Sirius isn't sure about James and Peter, but he knows he himself has a gobsmacked expression on his face; he hadn't even known Remus owns a dog. Well, owned, he supposes it is now.

Remus glances at them, and raises the corners of his mouth. It isn't a smile. "Don't look like that. It's okay. I mean, I haven't seen much of her anyways the past few years, have I? And she was old, far over the average age. I mean, she's been in our family since before I was even born; that's more than fifteen years! So it wasn't like it was a surprise..."

Swallowing, Sirius clenches and un-clenches his hands. He feels that he should comfort Remus somehow, but he doesn't know how to. It's Remus who goes around and distributes hugs to the poor and needy — a category Sirius often finds himself in — but now that he's the poor and needy one, there's no one to give him a hug. Sirius would, oh how he would, but he doesn't know how and to be honest, he's a bit scared as well.

Remus looks at them and then smiles that not-smile again. "Well, I think I'll turn in now. Night."

"Good night," they echo, rather hollowly, and watch as Remus goes up to their dormitory.

As Remus disappears out of view, Sirius frowns and tries to think. He's pants at comforting, obviously, but there must be something he can do for Remus. Maybe he could cheer him up? A prank, perhaps; a surprise-prank that'll catch Remus unawares and make him laugh?

Yes, yes that's a great idea. Sirius knows just the thing. He'll need to swot up on that Recording Charm Flitwick mentioned, and some kind of Delayed Action Spell, Summoning Charm and Illumination Spell, and see if he can get Wingardium Leviosa to work on several objects, maybe alter the Tarantallegra Hex, and nick James' Cloak so he can nip down to Hogsmeade for supplies, not to mention rummaging through Remus' sacred Trunk of Do-Not-Touch. Yes, it'll be just the ticket, brilliant...


Anxiously squirming in his seat, Sirius throws a glance at the giant clock on the wall of the Great Hall. Just one minute to seven. Almost there, almost...

"Sirius? Are you alright?"

Sirius whips his head around so quickly his neck hurts. Remus has his head cocked to the side as he watches him. Remus looks a trifle better today, but his eyes are still too large and sad.

"Ah, yes, I'm fine, perfectly fine, nothing's the matter, why would it be? Everything's just dandy, never better, really."

Remus lays his hand on Sirius' shoulder. "What's wro—"

Remus doesn't finish his sentence, for the clock strikes seven and he's cut off by a drum roll. All the candles in Hall go out, only the enchanted evening sky provides light. Everyone look up from their dinner, murmuring in confusion, some gasping when opaque orbs the size of bludgers come floating down the ceiling.

"Sirius, what is this?"

The drum roll ends with a rim shot, and then...

"Welcome to the workin' week! Oh, I know it don't thrill you, I hope it don't kill you. Welcome to the workin' week! You gotta do it till you're through it so you better get to it!"

Music booms from all directions at once, guitars and drums and bass and vocals vibrating through the mass of bodies. Above each House table, pixie dust and sharke scales in the appropriate colours appear out of thin air and rain down on the students. The staff table instead has their portion of dust and scales — iridescent for the sake of equality — exploding from under the table, the tablecloth flapping as the teachers get covered in the dust of glitter.

The music comes to a sudden halt, a needle-against-vinyl scratch is heard, and then a different song starts playing.

"She's a Killer Queen! Gunpowder, gelatine — dynamite with a laser beam! Guaranteed to blow your mind, anytime!"

The opaque orbs are now in level with the students heads and are swishing through the air like Golden Snitches, alight and changing colour pari passu with the beat of the music. Now that everyone have their attention elsewhere, Sirius discreetly takes out his wand and whispers, "Tarantandante," while aiming at random.

The students he hits jump, and then get to their feet and start dancing — boogie, even, in some cases. Their housemates stare at them at first, gaping, but some get up as well and join in. The Slytherins and Ravenclaws are bores, of course, but the Hufflepuffs and Gryffindors are loyal and soon everyone at the two tables are alive and shaking — even some less uptight Ravenclaws are tripping the light fantastic now.

Another scratchy sound.

"Oooh, catch that buzz! Love is the drug that I'm thinking of! Oooh, can't you see? Love is the drug for me! Ooooh-oh-oooh!"

Someone shakes his shoulder urgently and Sirius turns around.

"Did you do this?" Remus has to shout to make himself heard, but he doesn't sound angry. No, he is smiling and laughing, face all scrunched up in that funny, wondrous way of his, and his eyes twinkle as he looks at Sirius.

"Mm, uh-huh," Sirius says, grinning widely himself, and doesn't look at all where he's aiming his wand. The rife gasps that follow makes him turn away from Remus.

At the staff table, McGonagall has gotten to her feet and does a jig that would put professionals to shame. Madam Hooch, two seats to McGonagall's left, gets up as well and offers her hand to Kettleburn, who accepts it. Snickers spread throughout the Hall, until they're outright guffaws; the moment of tense apprehension disappears as if it had never existed at all. McGonagall is glaring at the Gryffindor table while she jigs, apparently quite certain of the culprit.

"By Merlin, Sirius, this is brilliant!" James shouts, dancing and laughing, at the same time Peter calls, "Amazing, Sirius, amazing!"

"You did this all by yourself?" Remus looks honestly surprised. Sirius finds his eyes drawn to the small 'O' shape of his lips.

He leans forward so Remus can hear him better, so close he can almost rest his chin on Remus' shoulder. "Yes, I did. I wanted to cheer you up."

Sirius pulls back so he can see Remus' face again. Remus looks gobsmacked now, but it only lasts for a moment before he breaks out in another smile. This time it's even something more to it; something softer, warmer, a wrinkle that wasn't there before, and for some reason it makes Sirius blush.

"Money, get back! I'm all right Jack, keep your hands off my stack! Money, it's a hit! Don't give me that do-goody good bullshit!"

He'll get weeks of detentions for this, Sirius is certain of that, but it couldn't have been more worth it.

~*~


Songs
"Welcome to the Working Week" by Elvis Costello (1977)
"Killer Queen" by Queen (1974)
"Love Is The Drug" by Roxy Music (1975)
"Money" by Pink Floyd (1973)

[Yes, I know Elvis Costello's two years too early here. Er, let's say the boys got their hands on, um, a Time-Turner and a bootleg copy? (C'mon, it's a fluffy trifle of a ficlet! Cut me some slack and don't get hung up on it, yeah? ::g::)]