DISCLAIMER: I do NOT own Harry Potter, or any of the characters mentioned in this story, unless stated otherwise. Rated for possible sexual content, violence and language. Reader discretion is advised. Any similarities to real life are purely coincidence and I will not be held responsible! Thanks!
WARNING: WILL CONTAIN MATURE THEMES (sex, swearing, etc), IMPLIED/MILD SLASH (male on male), BAD HUMOUR, POTION-MAKING (don't ask why you have to be warned about that), and RIDONKULUSNESS!! Ye be warned
Author's Note: this came to me as I was reading HBP just now, and even though it's two in the morning, I HAVE to get this plot bunny down, at least so I don't forget it entirely 'cause…well it's brilliant (if I may say so myself). So here we go! 'It's the chemistry of a car crash…' Shiny Toy Guns ROCKS!! Cheers!
PS. – THIS IS FOR THE SIMPLY FANTABULOUS serindraxx FOR HER BIRTHDAY!! (Which was on Valentine's, and I know this is horrendously late, but…well you've seen why, love). SO HAPPY BIRTHDAY DARLIN'! This is for you on Singles' Awareness Day! XD
"Mooney, how long does it take to die from drowning?" James Potter asked morosely as he stared into the half-inch of milk on the bottom of his cereal bowl.
Remus Lupin glanced up, sliding his boyfriend's hand off his leg, and smiled sympathetically. "More time than it will take for you and Sirius to set out for Divination and less time than it will take for me to tell you all the reasons why drowning yourself in half an inch of milk is a stupid idea."
"Why d'you want to drown yourself, Prongsie?" Sirius asked, discarding the bottom portion of his muffin and stuffing the top half into his mouth before putting his hand back on Remus' thigh.
"Lily hates me."
"What else is new?" Sirius muttered, spewing blueberry muffin crumbs across the table before Remus elbowed him and glared (and not just for the hand this time).
"I mean more than normally," James added, sighing and turning his spoon over and over in his hand. "I mean I think she really might actually hate me."
"What's happened now?" asked Peter Pettigrew, the final quarter of the infamous Marauders, as he reached across for more toast.
"I saw her in the common room this morning," James sighed depressively, "working on her Potions homework. So I decided to ask her if she wouldn't mind, since she was so brilliant, if she would brew me up a potion."
Remus looked confusedly at his friend, too caught up in wondering how that led to Lily hating James more than normal to notice Sirius' hand moving steadily up his leg. "So? What's bad about that? In fact, that's almost a…normal thing to say."
James merely shook his head. "She asked me what potion, and I said…I said…" James put his head in his arms at this point, and mumbled incoherently into the table. Remus and Peter looked at Sirius, who was eating another muffin top while making a pyramid from the uneaten bottom halves of the other six he'd consumed, to decipher James' mumbling.
"He said he asked her to make him some Felix Felicis, so he could get lucky."
Remus groaned and rolled his eyes as Peter hastily tried to stifle his giggles (for he rather thought this brilliant like everything else James did). "Are you serious Prongs?"
"No, I'm Sirius," Sirius cut in. Remus disregarded him.
"Did you honestly think that anything good could come from you asking something so incredibly stupid? I mean Salazar's shorts! The two hundred and forty seven other bad joke innuendos didn't work on Lily, why did you think this one would!?"
"Well Lily's Smart like you, and you fell for Padfoot's lame come-ons!" James retorted, annoyed that Remus had made him feel like an imbecile so effectively. Peter gagged slightly on his toast and James thumped him dutifully on the back.
"Yes," said Remus patiently, "but Padfoot also happens to be more charming and handsome than you. No offence. But, I mean, it just works when he does things like that…plus he's got those eyes that you can't stay mad at…and he's devilishly good looking to boot…great body…" Sirius was beaming at his boyfriend, and leaned over to kiss him.
"Ahem! Not at breakfast please!" said James sharply. "And whatever, Mooney, you're just effing smitten with that git, so nothing he does fazes you. Let's get back to me, shall we?"
"What d'you mean, 'back to you'?" Sirius asked, incredulously overdramatic (as always). "I thought we'd already established Lily hates your life because you're stupid. What more is there to talk about?" James knocked down his muffin-bottom pyramid and Sirius squawked, hastening to rebuild it.
Having distracted his best mate, James then turned to Remus. "Mooney, you have to help me redeem myself in Lily's eyes… Please? Pretty please? I'll buy you chocolate…"
Remus rolled his eyes again, sure they were going to roll right out of his head some day soon if he didn't find someone half sane to talk to. "Alright, fine, I'll help you. But you have to promise, promise, me that you'll stop making dumb passes at Lily from now on. If I have to hear you whine and her bitch at me one about something you've done more time I'm going to implode."
Sirius (who had completed the rebuilding of his muffin pyramid) didn't look up from where he was making a toast-fence around his pyramid as he said, "Ooh, have you got a plan then, Moonshine?"
"Of course he does," said Peter promptly, throwing bits of his own toast at Sirius' wall to test its strength and durability, "he's Mooney!"
"Too right you are Pete!" James agreed, looking heartened that he would soon have to woman of his dreams not hate him as intensely as she did right then, and he stood up. "Come, Padfoot, let us go to Divination and predict how soon Lily will be on her back in my bed!"
Sirius jumped up as well, kissing Remus noisily on the cheek before grabbing up his bag. "Yes, let us go Prongs, you evil man who shall no longer harm my feat of architectural genius. Remus, be a darling and make sure no one touches my pyramid, will you?"
The lycan was just nodding wearily (as he'd been asked to watch muffin pyramids at least half a dozen times before), when James, cackling madly, dumped the contents of his cereal bowl on top of the feat of architectural genius, leaving it a sodden, blueberry filled mass on the table, no longer needing the milk to contemplate ending his own life. Sirius stalked away angrily and refused to think up funny things to see in the crystal ball (and exclaim loudly about to the teacher with the singular intention to disrupt the class) with him all through Divination.
Later that evening, however, as they all sat around the fire, Sirius seemed to have forgiven James for his treachery (James having claimed he was only trying to give the pyramid a moat to go with it's toast-fence), and was now taking great pleasure in planning whether to have 'I fornicate with myself' or 'Snivellus wanks' stuck on the back of Severus Snape's robes the next day with his best mate and Wormtail. Remus was sitting on the arm of Sirius' squashy, dilapidated chair, not really paying attention to what his friends were plotting, but trying to think of how to turn James blunder with Lily into a not-so-complete fiasco. And just as Peter suggested they write 'Snivellus wanks' in pink writing, it came to Remus, in one gloriously beautiful stroke of sheer genius.
"I've got it!" he almost shouted, causing his boyfriend to topple forward out of his chair in alarm and half the common room to look round at him. Blushing, Remus helped Sirius back into his seat, and leaned forward to divulge his plan in a quieter voice. "What we're going to do, lads, is feed James some actual Felix Felicis. Then you can ask Lily out, and seeing as you'll be luckier than a box of four-leaf clovers, she'll undoubtedly say yes! And there's the added benefit that you won't do something agonizingly dumb, because the potion will be leading you on!" The three of them stared at him, the Snape Pranking forgotten, mouths agape.
"But how…where are we going to get Felix Felicis?" Sirius asked in a low voice.
"And assuming it works, what the hell am I going to do once Lily agrees to go out with me?" James whispered, his tone suggesting the thought of going on a date with Lily was more than slightly intimidating.
"Plus, how are we going to guarantee Prongs doesn't cock it up?" Peter asked, feeling like he should ask a question, seeing as everyone else had.
"I have answers to all those questions. We, or rather, I should say you Padfoot, are going to get Lily to make some for us. James, you'll be fine, once Lily realizes your head isn't stuck completely up your own arse, she'll adore you. And Peter, we'll guarantee it by having one of us with Prongs in all stages of this whole thing. Operation FTWL, Felix to Win Lily, is going to commence right now."
Sirius looked proud that Remus had actually decided to use an acronym (something that he was notorious for) for the plan name, and Peter looked happy there would be something other than homework to do in the evenings now. James, however, looked confused. "Why does Sirius have to get Lily to make the potion? Why don't you, Remus?"
"Because Lily knows me. She'll be suspicious if I turn up and start chatting about potions to make people lucky, because she'll know I'm trying to help you win her over. If Sirius asks her, telling her, of course, that he wants to give it to me for my birthday but he's just way too crappy at Potions to even try it, she'll be much more inclined to do it. She won't be able to resist the challenge, and I feel certain Lily will think it beyond adorable Sirius wants to give me a lucky day for my birthday."
"But your birthday isn't for ages!" said Sirius, who looked, like the other two, rather awed by the cunning of Remus' brain. Remus rolled his eyes.
"I know, but Felix Felicis takes six months to make. So all you have to do is buddy up to Lily for the next six months-"
"Lily will know something's up if Sirius is hanging round her," James cut in. "Or she'll think he's trying to get in her knickers or something. W-won't she?" he added beseechingly, looking at Remus, afraid that Sirius might actually try to get in the love of his life's knickers.
"Like I'd even want to," Sirius muttered. "Naw, I suspect Evans will be too delighted by the fact someone can stand her for more than five minutes, besides other Smart People and you, Prongs, that she won't ask too many questions."
James opened his mouth to retort with something rude, but Remus forestalled him. "Whatever, the point is, we get Lily to make us the potion. Then, step two: you asking her out for a date. Peter will go up to her and say that you, James, want to ask something about…I dunno, the prefect schedule or something. Then she'll come by the dorm with Peter, and you'll have taken the potion, and so will be able to woo her. Then stage three commences: the date. We'll all be at various places during the day we set for you to take Lily out, which will be a Hogsmeade day, and we'll make sure you don't mess anything up too badly. First, you'll go to the Three Broomsticks, where you'll 'accidentally' bump into Peter. He'll say hello, then sit nearby so he can listen in and make sure you don't say anything stupid. Then you'll ask if she wants a coffee, and take her to Puddifoot's, where Padfoot and I will be. Just take a table nearby, and you're off to the races."
After Remus had finished this impressively devious monologue, the other Marauders stared at him in awe. "And you always said you hated pranking," Sirius purred after his initial shock wore off, nuzzling the lycan's neck.
Remus blushed. "I do hate pranking. This isn't a prank, its just…security, so that James can show Lily that he's really a nice person. And maybe if Prongs gets laid, he won't be so bitchy about us doing it," he added, winking roguishly.
"Have I ever told you that you're made of fucking awesome Mooney?" James asked a bit hoarsely. He felt a giddy sense of excitement that, in six (or so) months time, he might just have Lily as his girlfriend once and for all.
Remus grinned, enjoying the praise. "Not lately."
If there was one person Lily Evans hated more than James Potter, it was his stupid best mate, Sirius Black. She was still puzzling over how the Casanova had won over Remus, someone she'd thought would be smarter than to date the philandering pureblood, but yet, they were still going strong several months into it, and Lily was left with her musings. Thus, it was with a resigned air that she slowed in the corridor a few days after she had seen the four Marauders plotting something in the common room so that Sirius Black could catch up, panting, with her.
"Evans," he gasped, smiling winningly despite his breathlessness. "Merlin, for a short girl, you sure can book it."
Lily smiled grudgingly. "Sorry, but I have Ancient Runes, so if we could possibly walk and, er, talk simultaneously…?"
Sirius set off with her towards the opposite way he needed to go. "Look, I wanted to ask you a really, really, uber big, GRAGANTUAN, favour." Lily raised fiery eyebrows in surprise.
"Whatever it is, the answer is no."
"Aww, c'mon Evans, at least hear me out…" Sirius said in his best wheedling voice. "I swear, it's nothing to do with Pr-James. Honest."
"Fine," Lily said in an unwilling sort of way. "Let's hear it then."
"I want to get Remus something for his birthday, something-"
"Remus' birthday isn't until next year!" She squinted at him suspiciously. "What do you really want…?"
"I thought you said you were going to at least hear me out?" Sirius replied, sounding exasperated; Lily nodded. "Then could you please not interrupt me? I know Remus' birthday isn't until next year, but the thing I want to get for him is going to take at least that long to make, or so I've read." Lily restrained herself from making a snide comment about Sirius reading, merely waiting for him to elaborate. "You see," he said when she didn't interrupt, "I want to get him some Felix Felicis."
Lily actually stopped walking as she rounded on him. "Potter put you up to this, didn't he!?" she demanded at once. Sirius forced his face into a look of confusion.
"What? I already told you, this is nothing to do with James."
"So he never told you about his last idiotic attempt to get me to go out with him?"
Sirius, continuing to look bewildered, shook his head. "No, and frankly I've no idea what you're even on about Evans… Anyway, like I was saying, I want to get Remus some Felix Felicis for his birthday, you know, give him a really good day and all, but I'm complete rubbish at Potions, and since it's common-knowledge you're the Potions Princess round here, I thought you might be willing to do me a favour by making me some. For Remus of course."
Lily considered it as she continued walking to Ancient Runes, Sirius following obediently behind her. Trust it to Black, she thought musingly, to pick one of the fiddliest, damn-near-impossible potions to give Remus for his birthday. Then again, she was rather flattered he had sought her out for help…and it would be a rather unique birthday gift idea… And she certainly couldn't help but be intrigued by the challenge it posed… "Alright," she sighed. "I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'll help you. You, however, have to get me the ingredients for it, because I don't have them all and some of them are downright expensive for those of us without giant trust funds at their disposal."
Sirius ignored this last jibe, grinning jubilantly, and actually pulled Lily into a momentary bone-crushing hug. "Thank you SO much Evans, you'll have your potion ingredients within the week! Oh I can just imagine the look on Remus' face now!" Lily grimaced slightly as Sirius sobered. "But, you can't tell anyone what you're brewing or if they find out what it is, what you're brewing it for. I don't want Remus to have a clue! And if there's anything I can ever do for you, ever, ask and it'll be done."
"How about getting Potter to lay off the lame attempts to ask me out for a few weeks?" she replied dryly. Sirius beamed.
Lily nodded and watched as Black traipsed back down the corridor with the sinking feeling that by the time the Felix Felicis was done, she would regret entering into this deal at all.
True to his word, Sirius had delivered every last one of the potion ingredients to her by the Saturday of that week, suggesting none too sneakily that she could start brewing it over the weekend. Lily had merely rolled her eyes, told him to sod off, and taken the items to her dorm room to stash them in the cauldron she kept under her bed for Potion emergencies. The temptation to start on it immediately was too much, however, (not that she'd ever let Sirius know it) and Lily found herself starting the complicated half-year process of brewing the Felix Felicis that very evening.
"How's the potion coming?' Sirius asked in a low voice, making Lily jump noticeably. She'd been in the library, making notes on trans-species Transfiguration for Professor McGonagall's essay that was due in less than a fortnight, and had been too absorbed to notice the sound of approaching footsteps.
"Merlin's pants!" she gasped, restraining herself from beating Sirius Black senseless with the book she'd been perusing with much difficulty. "Don't sneak up on me like that!" she hissed as a grinning Sirius plopped down beside her.
"Whatever you say Evans. So how-"
"I said to stop calling me that!"
"Apologies, Lily." Sirius shook off his annoyance. He had no idea what his best mate saw in the redhead; she was bloody bitchy. "So anyway, how's the potion coming?"
"The same as I told you last week, it's fine. I'm almost ready to add the pureed rat spleens-" Sirius made a face, glad he wouldn't be drinking anything with pureed rat spleen in it "-and lower the simmering temperature. A few more hours in fact, should be about the time," she added, glancing at her watch thoughtfully.
"Excellent. So we're on schedule then?"
"Yes, Black. Now go away, you're ruining my concentration."
Sirius smirked. "Is it because you secretly want me to ravage and plunder your innocence, Evans?"
"What did I say about calling me that?" Lily snapped, hating herself for blushing at the innuendo. "And for your information, my innocence has already been plundered." She turned back to her notes coolly, hoping Sirius would go away.
The Animagus, however, merely snickered. He had been using his weekly catch up times to check on the Felix Felicis' progress, as well as heckling Lily until she admitted things to him that he knew Prongs might find useful in his attempts to woo her. For instance, he discovered she was as madly obsessed with peanut butter as Remus was chocolate (definitely a Smart People quirk), couldn't bake to save her life, listened to Brian Slade albums when she was alone, hated roses but adored the flowers of her namesake, and on a memorable evening as she did Prefect duty and he followed her around mercilessly, that she wrote her very own erotic fiction and stashed it in a notebook underneath her mattress. "It doesn't count as plundering if you've done it yourself, y'know," he teased, tilting back his chair on two legs.
Lily really did hit him then, turning an even brighter red so that her face matched her hair. "You're disgusting; I don't know why I even deign to associate myself with you. Or, for that matter, why Lupin decides to either."
"Remus 'deigns to associate himself with me' because he likes it when I stick my co-"
"I get it!" Lily cut in, not wishing to hear anymore. "Now, please, just go away."
"Not until you tell me who you've let pluck your flower of innocence." Sirius merely smiled and beamed as she glared at him and the redhead growled unhappily.
"Fine. It was…" Sirius leaned closer, focusing intently on what she was saying and so didn't notice her foot sliding out and firmly shifting one of the precariously balanced legs of his chair. The Animagus fell promptly to the floor and Lily hurriedly snatched up her belongings. "I'll tell you when Hell freezes over, Black," she said sweetly, and left him there, chortling on the floor.
Sirius watched her go as he righted himself and his chair, ignoring Madam Pince's murderous looks. Lily Evans was an enigma; that was for sure. Just when he thought he'd gotten her pegged, she'd go and do something like knocking him onto the floor, and while his head was throbbing maliciously, he had to admit it was pretty funny. Maybe, just maybe, there was more to her than met the eye… Then again, he'd thought the same thing when he'd met Peter and so far he hadn't seen much he couldn't have guessed about him except that toast could be stored in any and every possible place.
When he finally made it up to the common room and shoved his way past the girls who seemed to think Remus just was a phase they could cure him of and had squeezed himself firmly into the lycan's armchair, he told James what he'd gathered. "She's not a virgin?" James spluttered, looking apoplectic with outrage.
"Apparently not," Remus replied, tilting his neck as Sirius nibbled at it, bored already with the subject of conversation. "Not that you can complain, because you aren't either," he added sharply.
"Yeah, but it's different!" James cried.
Peter nodded. "True. Evans is a girl, and they're supposed to wait until someone special comes…" He stopped talking at the look on Remus' face.
"It's the same damn thing, James," the lycan said coolly. "Stop being indignant and jealous that you won't be able to deflower her, it makes you look chauvinistic. Lily's perfectly allowed to sleep with whomever she likes. Besides, maybe it was really horrible and you'll be better than him."
James looked moderately mollified at these last words and stared into the fire for several long moments. "Yeah, but virgins are more fun…they don't know what to expect, so there's no pressure," he said at last.
"He's got a point, Mooney," Sirius replied. Remus shoved Sirius hard away from him. "Not that I believe it! I mean, think though, remember when we…y'know… It was our first time with another guy and I didn't have any expectations going into it. Now, however, I am accustomed to excellence."
"You two are pigs, y'know that?" he said, standing up, ignoring Sirius' pouty face. "And it may have been your first time with another bloke, but that doesn't mean it wasn't mine." And with that, he stalked over to sit with Lily across the room.
Sirius rounded on James. "What did you have to go and say that for!?"
"Oh shut up, Padfoot, I didn't make you agree with me."
Sirius frowned and crossed his arms, sulking, and none of them spoke for the rest of the evening.
The next day, Remus was perfectly back to normal, and Sirius, unable to stay mad at his lupine lover, forgave all (though he'd made up his mind to show the boy a helluva good ride the next time they shagged, just for good measure).
The days melted together as snow piled up around the castle before slowly melting away, all the while, Remus' birthday edging nearer and nearer. It was one day, after last period Transfiguration about a week from the lycanthrope's special day, that Lily caught up to Sirius as he made his way out of the classroom with Remus on his arm, and asked him to hang back a moment.
Remus made a face at this, but didn't comment, as he headed to dinner with James and Peter (who also looked convincingly suspicious) and Sirius waited until Professor McGonagall had swept from the room as well before asking Lily what she wanted.
"The potion is done," she said in a low voice. She thrust a smallish bottle into his hands and Sirius immediately grinned brilliantly at her.
"Humping Hippogriffs, I effing love you Ev-Lily!" he crowed, hugging her to him. Lily smiled at him; they had not become friends exactly, but they were no longer the almost-arch-rivals from before. "Remus is going to shit a brick when I give him this! Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
"Just don't use it to pull any elaborate pranks, please," she sighed, and Sirius grinned.
"C'mon, would I do that?"
"Yes," she retorted promptly, and Sirius laughed, knowing she was right. "Hopefully, I've done it right… I mean," she said, at the look on Sirius' face, "I'm sure I have…I did everything to the letter, so there's no reason it shouldn't be perfect."
"You're amazing…I promise you Lily, you are never going to regret brewing this for me." He stooped and brushed his lips across her cheek in a completely platonic show of affection, and waved as he skipped off to dinner, stowing the bottle in his robes as he went.
Once he slid onto the bench between James and Remus, he pulled it covertly from his pocket. "Phase one of FTWL is complete," he murmured, and the others took it in turns to hold the bottle reverently in their hands.
"Y'know, I never actually thought we'd get to this part," Peter said conversationally, passing the potion back to Sirius, who placed it carefully in his pocket. "Looks like you're going to be getting lucky pretty soon Prongs!"
Remus, who was also rather shocked that they'd actually obtained the potion, leaned close to the Sirius' ear. "And he's not the only one, if you catch my drift," he murmured huskily against the Animagus' ear, winking as he turned back to his bangers and mash.
Needless to say, neither Remus nor Sirius got much sleep that night, and the others in the room tried to ignore the telltale shimmying of their bed.