Life is Fickle Like That

Written: November 2007

Chapter I - The Prank:

"Please Mum! Can't you see how great it would be? Daddy would never expect it." Keira Black begged as she diced onions at the counter next to her mother. She was sixteen and dying to have her boyfriend over for dinner. The problem was that she hadn't figured out how to tell her father as of yet.

Sirius Black was very overprotective and seemed to think that her dating before the age of thirty was completely out of the question. He didn't even like it when she wore shorts – claimed it caused too much attention.

Alexis Black sighed as she looked over at her daughter. Keira had grown into a beautiful young woman and Lexy knew that Sirius tended to go a little overboard when it came to his daughters. Lexy figured it was because he had been such a player in his youth and he knew exactly what to warn them about. But Daniel was such a nice boy and it was obvious that Keira was crazy about him.

"Keira, I just don't know if pranking your father this way is the way to tell him about your boyfriend," Lexy replied.

Keira sighed as she tucked her long, dark black hair behind her ears. "I know, but would he listen any other way, without lecturing?"

Lexy shrugged. Her daughter did have a point. "That I don't know, honey." At Keira's sad face, she sighed. On second thought, pranking her husband was definitely worth seeing. It was time Sirius got a little wake up call on being an overprotective father. "Alright, but it better be worth it."

Keira grinned and hugged her mother tight. "Thanks Mum! You're the best!" She kissed her mother's cheek before she hurried upstairs.

Lexy watched her go and sighed. If her daughter was going to prank her father then the least Lexy could do was make sure everyone was there to see it. She headed over to use the floo whistling.

Harry could only grin as he urged Ginny to hurry up. The idea of Keira, the daughter of one of the best pranksters, planning on pranking her father was bound to be good. He sat on the bed and watched his wife as she changed her clothes.

"I can't believe that Sirius has no idea they're dating. They've been together for almost three months. Everyone saw it coming." Harry replied as he tilted his head to get a better view of his wife's backside.

Ginny rolled her eyes at him in the mirror. "Harry, Sirius doesn't want to think about that. He's very overprotective."

Harry nodded. "Well, his daughters are beautiful. Keira's sixteen now and Dakota's fifteen. According to Dan, it's not only Keira who has guys all over her. Aurora looks just like Lexy and Ariel and Jasmine are starting to become really beautiful too. When Bryan goes to Hogwarts he's going to be beating the boys up a lot."

Ginny laughed. "Bryan is not going to be as protective of his sisters as some brothers, I would think. What are you going to do when Brie starts dating?"

Harry paled as he thought about his little princess. Aubrey was twelve years old now and she was beginning to grow up, he knew that. "I won't have to worry about it, Jay and Brig will make sure the guys stay away."

Ginny rolled her eyes before she turned and sat down on his lap. "They won't protect her forever, Harry. Aubrey will tell them off or bat bogey them."

He grimaced and wrapped his arms around her waist. "Leave it to our daughter to pick up on your skills."

She laughed and kissed his cheek. "Mother knows best." She leaned in to kiss him just as their bedroom door opened and Aubrey came in with their second youngest son Flynn in her arms.

"Oops, sorry Daddy."

Harry grinned at her. "It's alright. Did Flynn just wake up?"

Aubrey nodded as she handed her brother over. "Yeah, I think Rory woke him. Gwen and Rhi wouldn't let him play and he started crying. Jay convinced him to play with some trucks though. Aidan is still asleep."

Ginny smiled and stood up to kiss her daughter. "Thanks sweetie. What kind of trouble have your brothers been getting into?"

She grinned mischievously. "Nothing much. Jay and Brig are anxious to see Uncle Sirius get pranked."

Harry nodded. "Uh-huh, and what are Keegan and Cierán doing?"

"Plotting something, I'm sure." Aubrey replied with a grin. "Keegan is showing Cierán the new stuff he got from Uncle Fred."

Harry groaned. "There's trouble right there." He shifted Flynn to his other arm as he cuddled into him. "Let's go check on your brothers and get you dressed, eh bud?"

Flynn grinned. "Da!"

Harry smiled. "Yeah."

Ginny watched them leave and smiled at her daughter. "I think your dad is getting a bit worried that you're growing up too fast."

Aubrey grinned. "I wouldn't prank Daddy like Keira's going to. I would just tell him when I had a boyfriend."

"Yes, I suppose you would. You've always been the more honest one." Ginny replied, a knowing look in her eye. Ginny knew for a fact that her oldest daughter happened to have a crush on a certain blonde-haired boy. "Though you haven't told your father yet who it is you do like."

Aubrey blushed. "That's different, Mum. He doesn't even like me that way."

Ginny smiled warmly at her daughter. "You're father didn't like me that way when I was your age either. Don't worry; he'll notice you one day."

Aubrey grinned at this. "Maybe."

"Well, come on, Brie, let's go round everyone up."

Ginny watched her daughter as she left the room and she grinned. Her family was definitely growing and she wondered how many years it would be before one of her children brought home a boyfriend or girlfriend. She sighed at thought. She wasn't sure if she was ready for that just yet. Pushing the thoughts aside, she headed out to round up her troublemakers to head to Sirius and Lexy's house. All in all, the night should be a good one.

Keira paced nervously as she watched everyone arrive. She wasn't sure if she could go through with this prank. Everyone was rooting for her obviously, but that didn't make it any better. Sirius didn't even know that her 'boyfriend' was coming to dinner. The doorbell rang and she jumped to her feet, hurrying out into the hall to open it. She grinned when she saw Dan.

His hair had been changed into a hot pink Mohawk. He had piercings in his tongue, nose, chin, eyebrows, and ears. He was wearing tight black jeans, a shirt with a skull on the front and there was a skull tattoo on his shoulder when he removed his leather jacket. If she hadn't know who he was she wouldn't have recognized him. His blue eyes were now brown and his nose an chin were shaped differently. He grinned at her.

"Well, how do I look?"

Keira laughed. "Ridiculous. I can't wait to see Daddy's face!"

Dan grinned. "I can. Uncle Sirius is going to hex me to death!"

She took his hand in hers, grinning when she noticed the tattoos on the knuckles before she led him into the common room. Before they stepped inside, she took his arm and wrapped it around her waist. Then she grinned up at him and they stepped into the room.

Sirius' eyes widened as he looked over at Dan. "Who the hell are you and what the hell are you doing with my daughter?" He climbed to his feet, his eyes flashing dangerously.

James leaned over to his wife and grinned as Rory climbed into his lap. "This should be good, right Rory?"

"Up Grandda!"

James cuddled Rory into him and he grinned at Lily. "Padfoot's going to blow his top."

Remus elbowed him lightly in the ribs. "How well did Tonks do on the disguise?"

Lily laughed. "Dan looks brilliant, Remus. You'd never recognize him."

"Daddy," Keira began, making sure that she ran her hand over Dan's stomach as her arm snaked around his waist. "This is S.D., my boyfriend."

Sirius' mouth dropped open and he took a step towards them his fist clenched. "I don't think so."

Lexy grabbed his arm. "Now Sirius, that's not the way to go. Give him a chance."

"A chance!" Sirius exploded. "Lex, are you seeing this … no! I forbid it! Keira, no!"

Keira pouted. "But Daddy … I love him."

Dan nodded. "I love her, sir. We want to get married."

Remus busted out laughing now and Tonks elbowed him. "Sorry," he muttered, his hand over his mouth.

"Keira … no, you know the rules and … definitely not with him! Not with some badly dressed punk named S.D., whatever the hell that stands for!" Sirius exclaimed.

Dan cleared his throat. "Screw Driver."

Sirius' eyes darkened. "Definitely no."

Keira moved closer to Dan. "Daddy! We have to get married, were in love!"

"So wait ten years!"

"We can't."

Lexy winked at her daughter now. "Sirius, she's pregnant."

"WHAT?" Sirius exploded.

Remus suppressed a grin now as he stood up. "Sirius, things like this happen. Killing the father of your grandbaby isn't going to solve anything."

"DAMN IT, KEIRA!"

Keira moved away from Dan to hug her father. "He's really wonderful, Daddy."

Sirius' eyes met Dan's now. "You got piercings anywhere else?"

Dan tried to suppress his grin now. "Yeah, I've got a few more. I don't think you'd like to see those ones though."

Sirius paled and sunk back down into his chair. "I just … oh Merlin." He buried his face in his hands as Tonks stood up.

"Keira, honey, you proved your point."

Keira nodded. "Thanks, Aunt Tonks."

"Thanks-what?" Sirius asked, his head shooting up and going to S.D.

The hair and the tattoos and the piercings disappeared. The dark shaggy locks appeared and Dan stood there, a grin on his face. "Hey, Uncle Sirius."

"Daniel James Lupin! Are you trying to give me a bloody heart attack?" Sirius exclaimed.

Keira grinned. "Dan and I are dating, Daddy. We have been dating for almost three months. I thought that as the Marauder Princess, it was my job to give you one good prank."

Sirius let out a deep whistle of breath. "Thank Merlin!" His arms came around his daughter and he kissed the top of her head. "You're too like me."

Lexy laughed. "Got anything to say to Daniel, honey?"

Sirius sighed as he glanced over at his honourary nephew. "You hurt her I'll kill you."

Dan grinned. "I think Dad's already got that one covered."

"Damn straight," Remus murmured making Sirius grin.

"Thanks Moony. That was brilliant, love," Sirius whispered into his daughter's hair as she giggled.

"I'm just glad it was a prank," Remus said, wiping a tear of laughter from his eye. "You two are way too young to have kids."

Dan caught Keira's eye and their faces dropped. Dan shifted nervously on his feet and the room fell into a very awkward silence.

"Now, Daddy..." Keira started as her father's eyes darkened and he made a growling sound in his throat before he began to prowl after her boyfriend.

"Dad," Dan whispered. "We didn't mean..." he trailed off.

Dan leapt out of the room with several men chasing after him. Remus, Sirius, and James took the lead with Harry and Ron close behind them.

The women looked down on Keira with disdainful looks and she just couldn't keep it in anymore. Keira collapsed to the floor, tears streaming down her face. She clutched her stomach in pain as she howled in laughter. She felt Dan rush back to her side and lift her into his arms, a huge grin on his face.

"You lot make it too easy." Dan replied, grinning as he kissed Keira softly. The kiss deepened and Sirius cleared his throat loudly.

"Get your tongue out of my daughter's mouth before I kill you." Sirius replied darkly as he glared at his honourary nephew.

Dan blushed and pulled back from Keira. "Sorry, Sir."

Harry grinned. "Ignore him, Dan. I didn't listen to him when he told me to keep my hands off of Gin."

Sirius snorted. "And look where it got you! Married with ten bloody kids!"

Ginny smiled and leaned over to kiss her husband's cheek. "We couldn't be happier. Besides, eleven."

"Huh?" James asked, a bewildered look on his face.

Lily's eyes met her daughter-in-law's. "Are you really?"

Ginny nodded. "Yeah. Almost four months now."

James still had Rory on his lap as he stared at his son in awe. "Another grandchild?"

Harry smirked. "Hey, Trelawney made a prediction that I would have a dozen kids, I'm just trying to make it come true."

Ron rolled his eyes. "Yeah, well, she also said you would Minister of Magic, dummy."

Fred snickered as he moved his two youngest into his lap. Freddie and Georgia were both two years old and his little angels. "Harry can't control himself. It's a compulsion."

Lexy grinned. "Clearly he takes after his godfather then."

Sirius ignored them and instead looked over at his oldest daughter. She was laughing and pointing at him as she kissed her boyfriend again. He fell into a nearby chair with a defeated look on his face. Lexy took pity on him. "It was all a prank, she's not pregnant."

"I figured that much, she wouldn't point and laugh."

"You're pouting," his wife whispered.

"I'm well aware of that."

Keira laughed and kissed her father on the cheek, though Dan's arms still encircled her waist. "I'm sorry, Daddy, but it was worth it."

"I know, sweetheart. Well, Dan, good luck, you'll need it."

Dan grinned. "We just couldn't resist, Uncle Sirius."

Sirius sighed as his eyes met his daughter's. Her eyes held the same mischievous glow that his had always held. "Vixen, you had to be a Marauder, eh?"

Lexy grinned. "You've got no one to blame but yourself."

Sirius' eyes sought Dakota's across the room. "Don't even think about it."

Dakota shrugged. "Come on, Dad! If I was going to prank you, I would hardly do the same thing!"

Aurora nodded. "Yeah, I would do something more along the lines of … telling you about the guy when you got the invite to the wedding."

Sirius frowned. "I'm not that bad!"

Jasmine grinned and crawled into her father's lap. "I'll stay with you forever, Daddy. Don't worry."

Sirius grinned. "See, Jazz here knows how to be a good daughter."

Ariel rolled her eyes. "Maybe I won't tell you about my boyfriend until I have a baby."

Aurora laughed. "Regardless of whether or not I was getting married, it'd be fun to watch you faint."

Sirius shook his head in a defeated sort of way. "I'm never going to win, Lexy! You've corrupted all of our daughters."

Lexy smiled and winked at her youngest child just as James wiggled his wand over Sirius' head. Sirius felt his eyebrows and scalp quiver for a moment before he turned to see his own reflection in the window. He was now completely bald and didn't have any hair anywhere.

Bryan grinned at his father from the floor as he and Cierán slapped hands. Harry just grinned. "Fred and George took care of Bry."

James grinned. "With help from the original Marauders, naturally."

Remus grinned. "Thank Merlin; I don't have to worry about anything like that just yet."

Dakota cleared her throat and winked at Adam. "I wouldn't be so sure, Uncle Moony. Adam's girlfriend is definitely a fun surprise."

Adam glared at her. "Dakota! You promised you wouldn't tell!"

Remus glanced from his son to his honourary niece. "Adam Theodore Lupin, what are you hiding?"

Adam shook his head helplessly. "Please Dakota; her father is going to poison me!"

Evan grinned as he leaned back in his chair. "Well her father doesn't hate Uncle Moony nearly as much as he hates Da and Uncle Padfoot, so you might be safe."

Harry's mouth dropped open at his brother's words. "Sabrina?"

Adam turned scarlet, sliding down in his seat as he nodded.

Sirius grinned. "You're dating Snivelly's daughter?" He grinned at Remus. "Oh man!"

"Adam, you have nothing to be ashamed of. Sabrina Snape is a beautiful girl." Lexy replied. "She looks absolutely nothing like either one of her parents."

Sirius snorted. "Good thing."

Lily glared at him. "She's beautiful."

James nodded. "She takes after her Aunt Lily."

Lily blushed as she thought fondly of her niece. Snape had broken down after Evan had been born and decided to forgive Lily enough to play the role of aunt in his daughter's life. Though he still tended to purse his lips and glare angrily whenever his daughter uttered the words, Uncle James. "She's wonderful, Adam. Congratulations.

Tonks nodded. "She's really sweet and very smart, so don't listen to the Marauders."

"Thanks Mum," Adam murmured.

Remus just shook his head sadly. "This is not going to go over well when Severus finds out."

Adam grinned. "He caught us snogging in an empty classroom once but we broke away in time. I think he believed me when I told him I was tutoring her in Transfiguration. She's horrible in that class."

"He's a stupid git!" Sirius exclaimed.

Adam shrugged. "He hates me though! Picks on me in class all the time!"

Harry sighed. "Snape picks on everyone all the time."

"Yeah, but he really seems to hate me!"

Dan shrugged. "It's not just you, Adam. He calls me 'Hey You!' and refuses to acknowledge me by name; even then it comes out as a grimace."

Keira grinned. "He's not nearly as bad as he is with me. His eyes frost over and when he says Miss Black, it sounds like he's trying not to vomit."

Remus chuckled. "You know, I think this is the best news I've heard all day. What do you think, Tonks, should we invite Sabrina over to dinner?"

Tonks laughed as she shook her head in amusement. "You just want to see Snape's face when he finds out who his daughter's boyfriend is, don't you?"

James nodded. "Clearly! Moony, can we come?"

Remus grinned. "The more the merrier."

Adam just glared at Dakota. "Snape is going to make my life a living hell."

Dakota grinned. "Maybe you should have thought of that before you went and told Michael Finch not to snog me."

Adam shrugged as he watched his family plan how to best tell Snape the news. "You're father paid me to."

Dakota's mouth dropped open. "WHAT? DADDY!"

Sirius turned at the shriek and when he realized Adam was grinning, he paled and made a quick exit as Dakota rushed after him.

"What just happened?" Lily asked.

Lexy sighed, starring after her husband and shaking her head. "I think Sirius is going to get a nice wake-up call." Then she just grinned as she heard her husband yell out 'Bloody hell! Dakota, who taught you that?' in the distance.

"Mum," Dakota yelled back.

Lexy just grinned. It was going to be an interesting night.

Harry smiled at his wife as he tucked their seven youngest kids into bed for the night. He closed Keegan and Cierán's bedroom door last and then took Ginny's hand in his, kissing her palm.

"It was an interesting evening." Harry said as he wrapped his arm around his wife's waist.

Ginny smiled at Harry. "Yes, it was. Can you believe the kids head back to school in two days?"

Harry leaned down to kiss her softly. "Yeah, means I have to head to work too."

Ginny smiled up at her husband. After eleven years of playing professional Quidditch for Pride of Portree, Harry had finally retired. He had been offered by the headmistress, Minerva McGonagall, to teach Transfiguration. McGonagall had been having a problem finding someone good enough and when she found out about Harry retiring she had asked him to teach. This would be his first year as a professor.

"I know that the kids said they were okay with it, but still … it might be kind of weird."

Ginny laughed. "You'll be fine, don't worry. I remember from the DA, Harry, you're a natural born-teacher."

"Yeah, well, I want to get a template made for what I'm going to teach and I have to go through all of my textbooks and notes for a review of the basics. I haven't even started."

Ginny kissed him softly. "Get to work then, Professor Potter."

"I will." He kissed his wife's palm again. "How are you feeling?"

Ginny rolled her eyes. "Harry, this is the seventh time that I've been pregnant. I'm fine."

Harry grinned. "Just checking." He kissed her softly again. "Alright, I'm going to go work."

He watched Ginny head into the common room to read for a bit and he headed into his study. It didn't surprise him to see his oldest daughter saunter in. Aubrey had stuck to him like glue since the first day she had come home. She always wanted to be around him. When she was younger she had lived in his study and in his lap whenever possible. She was without a doubt, Daddy's Little Girl. Gwen and Rhiannon were a lot more independent and even though they cuddled and ran to Harry when they wanted something, they stuck more to Ginny. But not Aubrey, she was his little angel.

"Hi Daddy," she said as she took a seat in one of the big chairs.

Harry grinned at her. "Hi Brie. Jay and Brig bothering you?"

Aubrey rolled her eyes. "They're so annoying. They have all sorts of pranks planned for when school starts up. You better watch them."

Harry laughed. "Oh, I plan to. Besides, if I don't keep an eye on them, you're mother will kill me."

Aubrey smiled at him, a knowing look in her eye.

She was quiet for a while as Harry worked on his outline for the following year. It was a few moments later when Harry spoke up. He remembered what Ginny had said earlier about what he was going to do when Aubrey brought home a boyfriend.

"What did you think of what Keira did?"

Aubrey laughed. "It was funny. Dan looked so silly and Uncle Sirius was ready to kill somebody."

Harry grinned at his daughter as he watched her talk. She was really growing up into a beautiful young woman and it scared him a little bit. Her long jet-black curly hair hung down her back and her bright emerald green eyes were wide and almond shaped. Other than those similarities to her father, she was the spitting image of Lily Potter. Harry couldn't believe how much she looked like his mother. Even her mannerisms were very similar, but her temper was all Ginny. He grinned at the thought and turned his attention back to what she was saying.

"I wouldn't do anything like that. I would just bring my boyfriend home to meet you."

"I appreciate that," Harry responded with a grin. "But no boyfriends for a while, okay? I don't think I'm ready yet."

She laughed. "I don't think it will be any time soon. He doesn't like me back."

Harry paled. "Who?" The idea that his baby fancied someone was bad enough, but the idea that this little punk didn't think his daughter was good enough made him angry.

Aubrey blushed. "Sam. If Jay and Brig knew they would make fun of me. Please don't tell them, Daddy."

"Sam?" Harry repeated. "Why does it have to be Sam?"

She shrugged. "He's funny and he's smart. He's really nice too and even though he helps in a lot of pranks he's more responsible than Jay and Brig. He's handsome."

Harry sighed. "Alright, well … one day maybe."

"One day, what?" Aubrey asked.

"He's too young to think of you that way, Brie. Boys mature slower than girls do. Your Mum had a crush on me when she was your age but I didn't even start to notice girls until third year." Harry explained. "But don't give up, alright?"

Aubrey grinned. "I won't." She stood up to kiss her father's cheek. "Goodnight, Daddy."

Harry watched her as she left the room and he sighed. She was growing up way too fast. It was a couple of hours later when he heard Aubrey crying. He was on his feet and at her bedroom door instantly but Ginny shooed him away. He paced their bedroom anxiously for what felt like hours and his head whipped to the door when Ginny walked in.

"What's wrong? Is she alright?" He demanded, grabbing Ginny's arm.

Ginny wrapped her arms around her husband and burst into tears. "She's fine."

"Why are you crying?" Harry asked as he held her close in his arms, cradling her against his heart.

Ginny sniffed as she spoke. "Our baby got her period!"

Harry wrinkled his nose. "I did not want to know that."

Ginny laughed. "Oh, Harry, it's wonderful! She's becoming a young lady. I'm so glad that she got it before she started to school. We talked about it and all of the things she has to do but it's better for me to be here. I was all alone when I started mine. I had to go talk to Madame Pomfrey and it was so embarrassing."

Harry grinned and kissed his wife's cheek. "I'll take your word on that. Is she, uh, I mean, is she okay?"

She laughed. "Of course she's okay! She just panicked a bit. But she's fine. Everything is fine."

Harry sat down on the bed as Ginny headed into the bathroom to wash up for bed. He suddenly felt very old. His daughter fancied a Malfoy, and now she had just become a woman … he sighed; it was going to be a long year.