Foundations

Author's Note: So yeah... Hi again... Haven't forgotten about this story. I promise. I may even be better about updating the next few chapters that I have ready to go. Maybe that will motivate me to start editing the rest of the story, too. I'll get there eventually. Have faith! In the meantime, enjoy.


James eased out of his bed, making sure the curtains remained closed so no one would notice he wasn't in it. He had been waiting for this moment all day, ever since the Owl Post had arrived that morning with his package.

Classes had been tortuously slow, dragging on for what had felt like forever, and he had almost skipped lunch to enact his revenge.

Except Black is smart enough not to leave his trunk unlocked, James thought. Clever bastard.

Waiting for his roommates to fall asleep had been just as painfully slow. Two hours had passed, James already wrapped in his Invisibility Cloak, the small jar tucked under his pillow when no one else had been in the room earlier. This was going to take all of his skill at sneaking around undetected for his master plan to work.

But it will be worth it. Oh will it ever be worth it!

His heart was thumping madly as he crossed the room towards Black's bed. He still felt the flutter of excitement from when his father had given him the Cloak the day his Hogwarts letter had arrived, and knew this was a perfect opportunity to use it. Black was usually a light sleeper, but with the Cloak, James would never get caught.

Black's shoes were sitting neatly next to his trunk, just begging to be pranked. And this had been an absolutely brilliant idea on James' part.

Easy enough to execute, too. Whoever had thought to combine itching powder with stink powder was a genius. The fact that Gambol and Japes sells it through their mail-order catalogue only makes things better.

He'd placed the order almost immediately after he had come up with the plan to teach Black a lesson. Sometimes simplicity was the best path, and if stink-and-itch powder wasn't terribly original, James didn't let that faze him.

The instructions said that it didn't take much, and James knew if he used too much, Black might notice before the prank really had a chance to take effect. If things worked according to plan, by lunchtime, Black would have horrendously itchy feet, and he wouldn't even be able to take his shoes off without stinking up the entire castle.

If he thought he could humiliate me like that, he'll think twice next time after dealing with Potter's Revenge.

He sprinkled just a little powder into each shoe, grinning as he did so. He paused after he finished, listening to the sounds of the room, making sure he hadn't woken anyone up. Lupin was tossing in his sleep again, probably having another nightmare that he never talked about. Peter was snoring softly, which meant he was actually asleep and not just pretending. Black shifted as James screwed the lid back on the jar, sitting up abruptly, wand drawn.

"Who's there?" he whispered into the dark room. James stood still, holding his breath. He might be under the Cloak, but that didn't mean he couldn't be heard. "Lumos."

The tip of Black's wand lit up, casting light around him. James was surprised that Black already knew that spell. They weren't due to learn it for another three weeks.

Not that it's a difficult spell, James reassured himself. I've known it for almost a month now, after all.

He couldn't help but smirk as Black's eyes slid right past where he was standing. Sometimes it was just too easy. Having Black sharing a dorm with him was almost a blessing in disguise in that regard. James didn't even have to leave his room to play pranks on his Mortal Enemy.

Still, he doesn't belong here. He should crawl back down to the dungeons to be with all the other slimy snakes.

After another long minute of scrutiny, Black extinguished the light on his wand, lying down again. James counted to one hundred in his head before he headed back to his own bed as quietly as he could, easing back between the curtains. He folded up his Invisibility Cloak and tucked it under his pillow with the jar, after making sure one last time it was tightly closed.

He smiled in content as he drifted into sleep. Tomorrow he would reap the sweet fruits of revenge.