Warnings: Slash! (Boys snogging. 'Nuff said.)
Disclaimer: Most of the characters in this belong to J. K. Rowling (any that are not mentioned in the HP books are my creations. There were more students at Hogwarts in the 70's besides MWPP, Lily, and Snape, dontcha know.) Thank you soooo much for creating such wonderful, loveable, shaggable characters in Prisoner of Azkaban…and for not doing something drastic (like suing me) just because I'm letting them play a little in the Sandbox 'o Love. Thank you and good night.
Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps
By Akira Ichijouji
Chapter One: Muffins, Slugs, and Illicit Kisses
"I hate you all," James announced good-naturedly to the room as he prodded the two-foot slug that had mysteriously appeared in his nightstand.
Sirius (or, more accurately, Sirius' blankets) quivered with suppressed giggling. With a flick of his wand, James banished the slug from his drawer until it hung, wetly, a good yard over Sirius's blanketed head.
"I wouldn't come out from under those covers anytime soon, Padfoot." Remus barely looked up from his reading as the slug waved bulging eye-stalks at the room at large. Peter, giggling, had abandoned his former vantage point to lean on the mahogany bedpost of James' four-poster.
"What? Why?" Both Peter and James broke into fits of laughter as Sirius pulled the covers off his head – and was immediately rewarded with a faceful of squashy, oozing slug belly. Remus looked up, grinned, and bit his lip to stifle the chuckle threatening to surface. Very surreptitiously, he pulled out his wand and banished the slug across the room, where it hit James square in the chest.
"Hahaha…ack!!!" James was bowled over backwards onto his bed as the slug trained its stalkish eyes on his face. With a murderous glint in his eye, James sent the slug whizzing back into Sirius, who sent it sailing into Peter. Remus rolled his eyes, laughed, and redirected the slug, which was en route to his head, back at James.
The tri-monthly slug fight had begun anew.
After much slime, giggles, wet smacks, and a final banishment of the bloated slug to the Slytherin common room, James decided that a trip to the kitchens was in order.
Remus quickly declined. "Urgh. How can you think of food after being hit in the face with a two-foot gastropod for the past quarter of an hour?" he asked, sticking his nose back in his book.
"We'll bring you back some muffins," Sirius said, waving coquettishly from the doorway and trying to remove some slug ooze from behind his ear with his sleeve.
Remus didn't look up from his book. "Sounds good to me."
The dormitory door creaked shut, and Remus could hear the tell-tale swish of the Invisibility cloak as it concealed the rampant mischief-makers.
Ah. Peace and quiet.
"Remus?" said Peter, from his position on James' bed.
The young werewolf sighed. He lowered his book, turning to face the other boy. So much for quiet.
His annoyance dissolved instantly, however, at the look on Peter's face. The smaller blond boy looked distressed, teeth worrying his bottom lip, eyes downcast. Remus crossed his legs, leaving ample room on the bed for a second occupant. "Peter," he said kindly, patting the space in front of him, laying his book face down on the nightstand. When the round-faced boy had made himself comfortable on the end of Remus' bed, leaning back against the footboard and letting one foot hang slightly off the edge of the mattress, Remus looked at him curiously.
"Why didn't you go to the kitchens with Padfoot and Prongs?"
Peter shrugged. "I'm not really that hungry, I guess."
Remus' worry doubled. Peter, most of the time, was one of the ones who instigated their late-night kitchen raids. "Do you want to talk about…anything?"
The blond boy winced. This was his chance to get everything off his chest…this was his chance…
Okay, this was his chance.
Alright, this was his chance.
As the seconds stretched into minutes, Remus fidgeted slightly. He didn't want to push. It seemed like Peter's problem was quite a bit more serious than a low Potions score or a missing homework assignment. Now the blond boy's throat was working, but no sound was coming out. Peter seemed to be staring intently at one spot on the blanket; he was taking deep breaths…
It was a start.
"…What would you do, if you thought that maybe, maybe you were in love with someone, or maybe you just like them, you don't know, but they were sort of the kind of person you aren't really supposed to fall in love with, you know, but you do anyway, and you're not sure how they'll take it, because there's a very strong chance they could punch you, or look at you funny for a long time, which would be worse, since your bed is sort of right next to theirs…" Peter clapped both hands to his mouth, eyes wide.
Hmm. James. Of course. Should have seen it sooner. "Well," Remus said, looking Peter straight in the eye, "I would definitely get them alone and tell them, because if you don't, you could spend the rest of your life regretting it." Remus smiled. "Especially if your bed is sort of right next to theirs." Now if I'd just take my own advice.
Peter looked relieved.
Sirius and James, meanwhile, had run into an adventure. The staircase they usually used to get to the kitchens had picked that very night to turn itself upside-down, so when the two boys came back, pockets stuffed with food, they were faced with a yawning precipice and the choice to either sit and wait it out, or look for another way around.
The first option was completely out of the question.
So they struck off down the hallway to their left, took another staircase, went behind a tapestry in an alcove straight ahead, barely avoided crashing through the Bloody Baron, wove in-and-out between some mysterious, humming suits of armor, took another left, and ended up directly where they started from.
So they took another path in the opposite direction.
Half an hour later Sirius and James were panting, back where they started, after a very near miss with Mrs. Norris and a sort of indoor will-o'-the-wisp. Unfortunately, they could still see that the staircase had not moved from its new location.
James pulled the Invisibility Cloak off them both and sat down on the dusty flagstones with a plop. "Have any more brilliant ideas, Sirius?"
Sirius huffed and sat down beside his friend. His last "brilliant idea" had led them into a very tricky room filled with mattresses and pull-away beds that had a tendency to snap shut when one came too close. It took James at least ten minutes to extricate Sirius from a particularly malicious box-spring.
Sirius suddenly brightened and raised one finger in the air. "I have it!"
James, disgruntled, slumped even farther against the banister. "If this has anything to do with that room completely filled with chamber pots we found last week, I refuse."
"Damn." Sirius slumped against the banister as well. "That's it. I'm all dry."
James was shocked. "What? Mr. Man With a Plan doesn't have another harebrained scheme?"
"Shut up. I'm tired. And hungry." The shorter boy eyed James' pockets hungrily. "Can I pleeeeease have something to eat?"
"No. It's not my fault you ate all your food."
Five minutes later, Sirius was chatting away, munching on a blueberry muffin. "So, she sent me a note in Transfiguration asking if I wanted to meet her in the Astronomy Tower at 9:00 Friday night…and wow, this girl…absolutely gorgeous. All that curly black hair…and curves…" Sirius cupped his hands to illustrate. "…But I had to tell her no, since I already had a date with Lydia. Is it just me or has Lydia been making eyes at that Ravenclaw, whatsisname, ahhh…Jeremy Baston?"
James had been steadily drooping every since the long-haired boy went into chatter mode. As Sirius switched topic once again, James' head dropped onto his shoulder.
"So, Jamie, tell me again who the first girl you ever kissed was?"
"You know all about it, Sirius."
"Yes, precious, but it's so much more fun to tease you once my memory has been refreshed."
Sirius smiled euphorically. "Takes one to know one."
And then, everything was still.
Ahhhh, silence. James' eyes drifted shut, and his breathing became heavy and regular. In his drowsy state, he didn't really notice when Sirius' arm snaked around his waist, Sirius' hand covered his, and Sirius' lips lightly touched his hair. "You're such a darling, Jamie."
"I don't know, but his face sure rings a bell!" Peter delivered the punchline of his new joke with a flourish and a giggle.
Remus couldn't help it. He laughed. "That was terrible."
"I know." They grinned at each other. In a moment of slight insanity, Remus had a mysterious urge to run his fingers through the loose blond curls of the boy across from him. "R-Remmie?"
"Have…have you ever wondered…what it would be like…to kiss another boy?" Peter's pale blue eyes were worried again, and a flush colored his round cheeks.
"Quite a bit, actually," Remus admitted, hands plucking nervously at the coverlet.
"Would…would you mind…if I…" Peter trailed off, leaning forward until his weight was supported under his hands, leaning forward until his lips were pressed clumsily against Remus'.
James was bored and drowsy, and kissing Sirius had seemed like a very good idea at the time. Apparently it had seemed like a very good idea to Sirius as well, because Sirius couldn't seem to keep his hands off him. Only the clunk of the staircase going back to its original location knocked them violently out of their reverie.
"Whoa." James was looking wide-eyed at a very wide-eyed Sirius.
"Wasn't expecting that to happen." They stared for a few more seconds, eyes every-so-often flicking down to kiss-full lips.
"D'you want to…" James nodded his head in the direction of the newly-restored staircase.
"Oh. Oh. Yeah." They struck off for home.
Seven minutes later Sirius had nudged James up against a wall in the Charms corridor and was thoroughly kissing him. James didn't mind at all.
So…" Remus' voice was slightly hoarse.
"Thanks," Peter whispered, sitting back on his heels.
The kiss had been awkward, confusing – a classic first on both parts. Remus came up with wetter lips than he would have expected, and Peter came up without that legendary rush of pleasure that was supposed to happen when you kissed somebody.
This didn't stop them from trying it a second time. And a third time. The only thing that kept them from giving it another go was the tell-tale creak of the dormitory door.
"You're a bastard, Sirius Black! An absolute bastard!" James stormed off to his bed, didn't bother to undress, and pulled the curtains shut around him.
"Oh, but you love me for it!" Sirius said winningly, pulling red-striped pajamas from his dresser drawer.
James made an aggravated noise, and the curtains of his bed quivered as he pulled the covers over his head.
Peter awkwardly removed himself from Remus' bed, waving nervously at the boy he'd just chatted with and kissed for the past hour or two. Remus waved back, smiling.
As soon as Peter rounded the corner to his bed, last on the end next to James' silent one, Sirius launched himself at Remus' bed, landing face-first by the young werewolf's feet. "Hi Moony!" Sirius gave a chipper grin.
"Hi Padfoot." Remus smiled back and returned to his reading. Sirius pouted.
"Don't be like that!"
"What are you reading, anyway?" Sirius peered at the undecorated blue cover of the book.
"A short story by Edgar Allen Poe."
"American Muggle writer. Listen to this: While the angels, all pallid and wan, uprising, unveiling, affirm that the play is the tragedy 'Man', and its hero, the Conqueror Worm."
When Remus returned to his reading, Sirius went back to pouting. After looking around the room several times, he began tapping his fingers rhythmically up and down Remus' shin, who, to Sirius' dismay, gave no sign that he even noticed. So Sirius began tapping higher…and higher…
"Oh, honestly! What do you want, Sirius?" Remus looked disapprovingly at the black-haired boy, once again placing his book face down on the nightstand.
Sirius grinned, wriggled forward a little, placed his head upon his hands, and mouthed "Love me" followed by a come-hither look.
Remus rolled his eyes. "Go to bed, you prat."
"I am in bed," Sirius said, gesturing at the sheets around him.
Sirius pouted some more. "Good evening to you too."
Breakfast found Sirius, Remus, and Peter in their usual spots; James, however, was sitting several seats down, talking in animated tones with a petite brunette. The girl didn't notice, however, how James kept shooting rancorous glares in Sirius' direction.
"So, Remus, tell me again how sheep's bladders can be used to prevent earthquakes?"
Remus snorted into his pumpkin juice as Peter looked perplexed. Sirius didn't notice, however, as he began chatting brightly about last week's Quidditch.
Under the mask of nonchalance and hyper chattiness, Sirius was calculating his moves very carefully. He knew James was getting friendly with that girl just to spite him. Honestly. James held a grudge longer than anyone he knew. Surely, accidentally murmuring several different peoples' names when his and James' activities became a tad steamy wasn't enough to warrant the other boy giving him the cold shoulder.
Well, well. Two could play at that game.
"So Remus," Sirius said with a glowing smile. "Been up to anything…unusual…lately?"
Remus smiled. "Unusual in what capacity?"
Sirius waggled his eyebrows. "You know, unusual."
The young werewolf chuckled, looking down at his plate and back up at Sirius. "You know me, Padfoot. When have I ever done anything…unusual?"
Sirius smiled a private smile, eyes hooded. "You know me, Moony. When do I ever get tired of asking?"
Remus returned the intense stare, resting his chin in one hand. "You have a point, dear friend."
"Indeed I do." Sirius let his middle finger traverse the rim of his water glass lightly; he seemed engrossed in this action, then slowly raised his dark, expressive eyes to Remus'.
Two could play at that game.
(swish and flick)
Finitum Chapter One!
To be continued…
 – One of the readers in the last Quizbowl meet I played in read these really bad jokes at the beginning of each round. This particular one goes as follows:
After the death of Quasimodo, the bishop of the Notre Dame Cathedral was in dire need of a new bellringer. So he put up signs all over the city, asking if anyone would be interested in the job. The next day he had several applicants, but none were up to his high bell-ringing standards. Right when he was about to give up hope, a man showed up at the door. With surprise, the bishop noted that this new man had no arms. "I'm here for the bellringing job," he said. "But you have no arms!" replied the bishop. The armless man insisted that he be given a chance, and so they proceeded up to the bell tower. The bishop was still skeptical, but was amazed to see the armless man strike the bell over and over with his face, producing the most beautiful music he had ever heard. The joy ended, however, when the armless man tripped slightly, overbalanced, and fell straight from the bell tower. The bishop, shocked and appalled, rushed down to the street below where a crowd, already drawn to the beautiful sounds they had heard from the cathedral, were gathering around the mangled, dead body of the armless man. "Who is this man?" one of the bystanders asked, when the bishop arrived on the scene. The holy man replied, "I don't know, but his face sure rings a bell."
Ah ha ha ha, wasn't that terrible? There's a sequel joke that's just as bad, but I'm not going to type it out here. If you really really really want to know, you can email me and I'll tell you.
 – Kudos if you can identify this quote. ^_~ It's rather one of my favorite "overheard parts of a conversation" lines. Kind of like, "So I said, that is my foot!"