The Marauders' Howler
Summary: Harry Potter gets a howler from home. Fortunately for him, the Marauders distract Lily and decide to have a little fun.
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
There were several times in his existence when Harry Potter feared for his life, this was quite an accomplishment considering Harry Potter was only 13 years old. In his first year, Harry tried to rescue the Sorcerer's Stone and came face to face with Voldemort, who, at the time was on the back of his Defense Against the Dark Arts' professor's head. In second year, he ran into the memory of Tom Riddle in the Chamber of Secrets while trying to rescue Ginny Weasley. Although the situation he was currently in did not involve Voldemort nor did it involve rescuing of any kind, Harry was just as scared.
It all started the morning after the prank. The prank did not go as planned and as a result, Harry had received a couple weeks of detention (five to be exact). On that fateful morning, Harry had come down to breakfast with Ron and Neville; Hermione was already waiting for them when they got there. Frustrated with the boys because they had refused to listen to her concerns about the prank, the brilliant witch was determinedly ignoring them. Ron and Neville at least had the good sense to look ashamed, but Harry was too nervous to care.
In the end, Harry's apprehension was justified. Fourteen minutes into breakfast, when the entire Great Hall was filled with people, a snow white owl flew down towards the Gryffindor table and dropped a scarlet envelope in front of one very distressed Harry Potter.
The hall went silent. Neville sweated, Ron gulped, even Hermione drew in a shaky breath.
Harry had never exactly been on the receiving end of the howler. It wasn't that he never got into trouble—no, as a second generation Marauder and a member of the infamous Gryffindor Four, Harry got into more trouble than the Marauders and the Weasley twins put together. This little detail exasperated much of the Hogwarts staff, except for Snape who was undeniably smug when pointing out to the other disgruntled professors after a prank gone awry exactly how much Harry was like his father.
Lily Potter had her own way of doing things and when angered, she was a force to be reckoned with. There was also the convenient fact that Potter Cottage was linked to Dumbledore's office through floo (an unfortunate thing at times as Harry found out after a series of pranks and detentions). There was really no need for Harry to receive Howlers. First of all, Harry was the son of James Potter and Potters never learned. Second, his parents and godfathers, quite frankly, managed to embarrass him perfectly fine by themselves.
The one time Harry had received a Howler, he was not alone. He was with his not-so-mature dad and godfather, who at the time had kidnapped Prime Minister Fudge. Lily was at a Healer conference in Germany when the kidnapping went down. Unfortunately for the three troublemakers, she heard all about the disappearance of the Prime Minister on the WWN. She had her suspicions at first, but the moment she heard the reporter say the only evidence was a paw print and a hoof print inked on a piece of paper left behind on the Minister's desk, she knew for sure that her husband and his idiot best friend were involved. She left the room before she could hear anymore ramblings of conspiracy theories about how Voldemort and his followers had now recruited dogs and deer to do their dirty work.
Stuck in Germany for the next day and a half, Lily sent a very long, strongly worded—er, yelled howler to Number 12 Grimmauld's (where Padfoot, Prongs and a very excited 11 year old Harry were hiding out). Seven minutes into the howler, an abashed Sirius decided to return the frightened minister, leaving behind a still screeching Howler and a terrified James and Harry Potter. And that was only the beginning. (What happened afterwards resulted in the second time Harry had been terrified for his life.)
Harry had however witnessed much of the staff and several of his classmates on the receiving end of Howlers thanks to a certain Moony, Padfoot and Prongs, and surprisingly Lily, on occasion.
Back in his first year, the headmaster received an angry howler from the Marauders and Lily, all of whom were most definitely not pleased with him. The Howler was one of the longest on Hogwarts record, going on for 38 minutes and 42 seconds as each person took turns yelling at the uncomfortable headmaster. Professor Dumbledore looked particularly flustered by the end—to the amusement of much of the school—and started the Leaving Feast without his usual long-winded speech.
Filch had been sent a howler after James found out he had given Harry three month's worth of detention for a prank he didn't pull. After that, the caretaker's cat Mrs. Norris wouldn't leave Harry alone, which was especially irritating on a night of marauder-ing. (In the end, a couple of dungbombs set her straight.)
After Malfoy attempted to curse Harry with a particularly nasty hex in the beginning of second year, the blond boy received a Howler. Ron claimed the Howler was the best moment of his entire life and even Hermione admitted it was pretty funny (what followed was a gaping Ron, a blushing Hermione and much awkwardness for both Harry and Neville). Sirius took much delight in telling his ferret-faced nephew all about the illustrious history of the Black and Malfoy family. For three weeks after the Howler, Malfoy refused to look anybody in the eye.
During first year, a very unpleasant howler was sent to Professor Snape, thanks to James Potter and Sirius Black. Harry had grown bright red during their rant and refused to look anywhere except for his hands. Snape had glared with such hatred at the young Potter boy that everyone near Harry hadn't dared to look up at the Potions Master. Fred and George however, found the whole incident brilliant and wouldn't stop following the first year around. Harry, who finally had enough, introduced the twins to the Marauders, which perhaps wasn't his smartest move because that only encouraged them more.
Lily Potter, unfortunately found out about the Howler to Snape, and three days later in the middle of dinner she had shown up with a very uncomfortable James Potter and Sirius Black who had mumbled half-apologies in front of the whole school. Snape, who looked half pleased at Lily's intervention would not stay that way for long. As the rest of the school found out the next morning, Padfoot and Prongs were back to old tricks and had snuck into Snape's dungeons and charmed all the vials and jars to snap at Snape's hands whenever he tried to reach in. Needless to say Gryffindor had received a record in points lost in a day (second to only the Marauders).
But this was an entirely new sensation for Harry. Here he was sitting in the silent Great Hall with hundreds of anticipated faces all looking in his direction in front of a Howler. He had been right next to Ron when the red-haired boy had received his Howler in second year, now a year later, the only difference was that his best friend was giving him the sympathetic look.
"Harry. James. Potter." Lily's voice was ice cold, absolutely furious, and magnified so the whole hall could hear. She wasn't yelling like Mrs. Weasley did, but somehow it was even worse that way. "What were you thinking?" Her voice rose in volume with each syllable, a couple of Gryffindors nearby winced, "What could have possibly possessed you to do SUCH A THING? I CANNOT BELIEVE—"
"—What's going on here?" Sirius Black's amused voice filled the hall, "Is this a howler? Wait, are you sending Harry a Howler?"
"Well, I was, before someone interrup—"
"—Why are you sending Harry a howler?"
"Sirius. Shut up." This was unmistakably James Potter's voice, and the Head Auror extraordinaire sounded scared.
"But why is your wife sending your son a Howler? Jamesie, aren't you a little curious?"
"Sirius, maybe you should stop talking." And this was the cool headed Remus Lupin, "Lily doesn't look...pleased right now." The last part was said in barely a whisper, but the Howler picked it up and amplified it.
"Lily, sweetie, why don't you just calm down, alright? It's okay—"
"—It is not okay James, is this what you're encouraging your son to be like?"
"Well, yes, actually..."— Here an angry huff could be heard—"Anyway, he's just following in the steps of his dad. Plus, it's not as bad as the stuff we got into at school."
"I know very well what you and your friends got up to in school. I was there. And I do not want our son to be—"
"Aww, come on Evans, don't be that wand up everyone's—"
"You finish that sentence and I will kill you Black."
"Bum, I was going to say bum, sheesh, your wife's gone crazy mate—OW!"
"PRONGS! Your wife hit me." Sirius' voice was slightly pained but mostly incredulous, "Anyway, what is up your bum Lily? I thought Harry's prank was brilliant, reminds me of all the stuff we used to get into. Plus, Harry's little prank didn't hurt anybody—"
"Didn't hurt anybody? Four Ravenclaws, six Slytherins and three Gryffindors were sent to the hospital."
"—Blimey, only six Slytherins?"
"—What? No Hufflepuffs?"
Sirius and James had both exclaimed at the same time with different thoughts, and only just realized what they had said. An exasperated sigh could be heard in the background. Harry recognized it as belonging to the long suffering Remus Lupin.
Remus counted down under his breath: "Five, four, three, two, one..."
"YOU TWO ARE UNBELIEVABLE! YOU HAVEN'T GROWN UP AT ALL. IS REMUS THE ONLY RESPONSIBLE ONE OUT OF YOU THREE? THIS IS WHY I WAITED UNTIL YOU WERE ALL OUT OF THE HOUSE UNTIL I MADE THIS HOWLER! AND NOW LOOK WHAT'S HAPPENED, YOU'VE RUINED IT!"
"Merlin, this is like the time we kidnapped the Prime Minister all over again," James whispered to his best friend.
"Or that time she found out about what happened on your stag night."
"That was your fault; I don't know why I got yelled at."
"That's because you—"
"ARE YOU TWO EVEN LISTENING TO ME?"
There was a loud 'thud' and an anguished yell and then Sirius' voice came out, hurried and out of breath, "Don't listen to your mother Harry, I thought your prank was absolutely brill—Lily! That's my hair!" Glass broke, Sirius swore quite loudly in the background and then hastily, Harry's father spoke,
"Harry, I'm very proud of you, what you did was Marauder-worthy! Next time, try to send more of those slimy Slytherins to—I'm sorry Lily! I swear! I'm not encour—OW!" The sound of furniture hitting the floor muffled the rest of James' words.
"Get out of the way Moony!"
"Listen Harry," came Remus' amused voice amid all of the yelling and hexing, "That was a nice prank you pulled. The only part I recommend is, next time try not to get caught. Unfortunately, your father and godfather suffered from the same problem. Now excuse me while I go rescue them...again. See you over the holidays!"
And with that, the Howler tore itself up in the silent, dumbfounded hall.
* I shamelessly stole the idea of howlers being sent to Dumbledore and Snape bit from fyre in neutral's Of Western Stars universe, so credit goes to fyre.
I hope you enjoyed it! I'm not completely satisfied with this, but I'll be going back to school soon so I wanted to get something out quickly.
Please review! :)