So this is going to be a bit of a project I have put together for my Lovely Padfoot, who is currently trying so hard to finish a very exhausting portfolio. This chapter was suppose to be up last night, but do to some complications, there will be two chapters today instead.
This is for you Babu!
Part One- Part One- Being a Gentleman Means No Trouser Hats
The Gryffindor common room was thick with the late summer heat dripping through the windows, thrown open in hopes that the late hour would bring some relief from the sweltering temperatures that they had been suffering since their arrival on the grounds that afternoon. The fifth year dormitory, amok with half-unpacked trunks and bags, was almost an oven, and it's occupants were sprawled on the floor, to escape the thick humidity.
"Moony...how can you read in this heat...after eating all that food..." James moaned from where he was half comatose at the foot of his bed.
"Well...first I open the book, then I find my place, and then I look at the page..." Remus said rather absently. He was so used to James' antics by now he could read and answer without thinking as he thumbed a page over. He leaned back against his trunk and yawned slightly.
"It's because he's a madman." Sirius said thickly, from where he was thrown across Remus' legs, something else that Remus had become accustomed too. Not that this was something he had a choice in. He had tried many things to keep Sirius' from laying on him like a puppy, especially when it was hot, even throwing the book he was reading at the mess of black hair snuffling against his knee. Nothing had worked, so his being tolerant was really just quiet defeat.
"I am not a madman. I am trying to read, and Sirius you are cutting off the circulation to my feet." Remus mumbled from behind the book. Sirius, as predicted, did not move.
"Is that a fat joke, Moony? It is, isn't it. You're so cruel." Sirius bemoaned against Remus' thigh.
"Did you see Evans hit Prongs on the train?" Peter snicked, ignoring Sirius all together. James made a dying noise.
"Yes, well he was trying to guess what she was thinking, and sadly, he is not gifted with Divination, or women." Remus replied in the same disinterested voice. He had indeed seen the magnificent sight of on Lily Evans' backhanding on unsuspecting Prongs. Though by this point Remus and Sirius were both in agreement that after four years of being smacked squarely multiple times a week, at some point he might learn. This, very obviously, was not the case.
"I have to do something! I have to try something new this year! Lily will learn that I am the only man for her!" James sat straight up in his vigor, eyes suddenly burning with that scary passion that always was a little unnerving to Remus, especially with his glasses askew and his hair all over.
"James...I think you might be the madman." he dead-panned. Peter snickered. James glared at them both.
"No-no. I'm not kidding around guys, this year I am going to do it. I will win Lily Evans' heart. I just need a plan. What haven't I tried?" he crossed his arms over his chest, face screwing up into an expression of concentration.
"Being a civil human being?" Remus offered, a twitch of a smile on his lips. He then had to duck the shoe thrown at his head with Sirius pinning him down.
"How about reading her poetry? Girls like that stuff." Peter grinned, a sappy look on his porky, pink face.
"Yeah, and so does Moony." Sirius snorted. Remus kneed him in the gut and he groaned. "H-hey!"
"You're a wank." Remus crossed his arms.
"You're point? You don't kick a man when he's down Moony!"
"You aren't down! You are On. My. Legs." Remus gave Sirius an irritated look. "If you don't want to be kneed for calling me a woman, then get off, then I can slug you instead."
Remus and Sirius looked at Peter, who was looking at Remus with a spark, an idea. This was never a good thing. Remus squirmed. Whenever Peter had ideas they ended in trips to the hospital wing, or worse, complete mortification in a public aspect.
"...What is it Peter?" Sirius asked. James looked at them as if this was the roadmap to his romantic success.
"Well...Remus knows about love and stuff. He reads all those books about John Air and Shakyness..."
Remus cringed and made a small noise. "Jane Austin and William Shakespeare, Peter, honestly. If you are going to bring them up at least bother to say the names correctly. Jane Eyre Was a book, not an author-" Remus trailed off as he realized, with a sinking feeling, that he had just proved Peter's point, and signed himself up for something he really wanted nothing to do with. "-Oh...no. No. Absolutely not." He picked his book back up and stuck his nose back into the dusty pages so that he could ignore the rather intent looks.
"C'mon Moony, help a fellow mate out. You know the ways of the ladies hearts, there must be something in those piles of books you read that could give our good man Prongs a chance!" Sirius finally sat up, only to lean forward and pluck the shield book from Remus' fingers.
"I hate you." Remus growled at Sirius, not meeting the begging look on James' face.
"C'mon Moony, you'd be a total ladies man if you believed in dating!" Peter tried again.
"I don't not believe in dating, I just find it a waste of time. I don't think we should be chasing little flouncy Hufflepuffs-" at this he gave Sirius a pointed look. "-When we should be studying."
"You're such a damp jumper." James mumbled. Sirius made a sort of face at James' comment.
Remus bristled and his shoulders went stiff. The first night back together and he was being heckled into doing something that could get him killed by an angry redhead because he didn't want to look like a lame, boring, musty werewolf...which he was, but that wasn't the point. He certainly wasn't going give James the satisfaction of knowing he had hit a nerve, that would only make him look more like a berk than he already did.
"Remus..." Sirius said, the playfulness gone from his voice. Sirius was sort of magically good at knowing when something bothered Remus. "Just give Prongs a hand, so that he will still be around come next summer."
Remus and Sirius' eyes met, and he knew right then that he had already caved in.
"Fine-Fine. Whatever. Merlin's beard I have just sentenced myself to death."
"Yes!" Peter fist-pumped the air.
"You are a saint!" James launched himself forward and crashed into Remus, lying on top of him and hugging him.
"Ouf-! Bleeding-James! Get off!" Remus yelped as all of James and his pointy elbows and sharp angles squished him to the floor.
"Just tell me what to do and I will obey to the last word!" James cried out.
Sirius stroked his chin as if he had a beard. "Prongs, mate, there won't be a Moony left to aid you in your Endeavour for miss Evans' heart if you smother him."
"Err-" James sat up and Remus made a dying noise. "Sorry Moony."
"Get. Off." Remus batted at James' chest until he was again sitting a safe distance away and not squashing Remus' internal organs with his incredibly bony arse. Remus blew a few sandy brown curls from his eyes and rested his chin on a palm.
"Okay. If you want to win Lily's heart, poor bird she is, then you will need to listen to what I say very carefully."
"I will do whatever you say." James said very seriously, nodding and looking as if he was about to be told a life changing prophecy.
"Whatever he says?" Sirius smirked. James threw his other shoe at Sirius and it smacked him in the head, eliciting a horrible cry and a painful thud as he fell backwards into Peter's trunk.
"Okay. First of all, don't kill Sirius. He promised to tutor me in potions, and you know people will die if he doesn't." Remus rolled his eyes.
"Right." James nodded.
"Fuck you." Sirius growled from under s pair of Peter's trousers.
"I could tutor you-" Peter started.
"No." The other three cut him off in unison.
"Alright James, the first thing you have to do to win Lily's heart..." Remus leaned forward and eyed James, who fidgeted slightly at the intensity of Remus' gaze. "Is not-I repeat and emphasize-not be a giant tit around her. I know this is a completely ridiculous concept to you and your finger-combing, poncy antics, but I mean it. That does not amuse girls at all. Do little things, ask her how her day was and listen to her. Actually respond and ask questions. Pull out her chair for her when you have a chance. You have to show her you aren't immature. Which I feel may possibly be horribly misleading to her..." Remus looked thoughtful a moment.
"Hey! I am completely mature!" James cried indignantly. "And what sort of girls are you trying to woo anyway, Remus. You sound a million years old."
"James...you make fart jokes in front of the third year girls." Peter pointed out.
"...he has a point!" Sirius' arm shot up from under Peter's trouser's in an exclamation.
"Thank you, for your oh so gently out opinions." James mumbled, but looked back to Remus, who was playing with the frayed edge of his jumper as he thought. "So that it?"
"No. That is the first step. Show her you can be a gentleman and pay attention to what she has to say." Remus nodded. "And then we will move forward."
Sirius sat up and caught Remus' hand from picking at the loose string on the jumper, pulling out his want and tapping the edge absently so that it mended, looking at James.
"So no dung bombs in the girls bathrooms, Prongs. We will have to unload on Slytherin instead."
Remus looked at his repaired jumper and blinked. That wasn't something Sirius knew how to do last year. He looked between the two of them.
"How about no dung bombs at all?" Remus asked hopefully.
"Not a chance!" Peter, James, and Sirius snorted together. Remus laughed.
"Well it was worth a shot!" he put his hands up in defeat. Sirius chuckled and ruffled Remus' hair.
"You like it too, you just won't admit it, Mssr. Prefect Moony." He smiled lazily. Remus rolled his eyes, not saying anything, because Sirius was right.
Somehow, it felt as if this was going to turn into one of the more trying projects the marauders would take on, and Remus had this inkling suspicion that none of them would be able to predict the outcome.