Disclaimer: Harry Potter and all characters associated with it belong to JK Rowling and Warner Brothers, although if they want to see, I'll put down some $$ for Remus.
A/N: This story came around during a terrible bout of artist's block, so my sister told me to draw the Marauders as toddlers, including Snape and Lily. (This was after I told her to draw Snape.) Anyway, ignoring all plot-holes and inconsistencies and general No-Way-In-Hell-Could-This-Have-Ever-Happened, I think it makes for a cute little story.
For my sister, who helped me make the webpage.
By, Kim Hoppy
Enchant's Tot-Spot was a small daycare under the direction of Ms. Goose, a rather young but well-meaning witch. The small business was located off of Diagon Alley, on Mulberry Drive and just across from a shop that sold Plum Cakes and a variety of Sugar Candy. The front was a cozy sort, a white square with large front windows and colorful curtains. By wizarding standards, it looked relatively modern and Muggle, suburban (should a wizard even know what that word meant; most probably would think it was Herb Substitute, like any true Herbologist or Potion Master would sell a herb substitute, only Muggles would do a foolish thing like that) and wholesome. Any parent would hence feel secure in leaving their child there for a few hours of blessed peaceful shopping down Diagon Alley, even this day-and-age when DayCare was simply unheard of.
Inside, Ms. Goose smiled down at the little toddlers that were mingling around doing innocent child things. Things were quiet, a few bursts of giggles, and she busied herself by tending to broken crayons and gathering more colored paper, carefully stepping around a small brown-haired boy totally enthralled in a set of blocks whose letters and colors changed spontaneously, and took to changing their shape only at the bottom of rather high towers.
A tugging came at her dress. "Ms. Goose!" wailed the voice.
She looked down at a messy black-haired, bespectacled boy with annoyed blue eyes. The glasses had set to fall off his ears, and she knelt down to straighten them. "Yes, James?"
"Make 'er stop f'llowing me!" he ordered with typical pompous toddler authority, stomping his little foot to accent the point. He was pointing to a pig-tailed red-headed and freckled girl in a colorful sundress and ragdoll . . . who was currently sitting quietly on the opposite end of the nursery.
"James," Ms. Goose smiled, fixing the shirt. It had Bambi on it with a small Thumper, and she was interested to see wizards taking a small interest in Muggle movies. "Lillian is way over there. She's not following you."
"Yes she is!" he huffed loudly. "Cheese trying to kiss me! Make 'er stop!"
"She doesn't appear to be at the moment. Why don't you go color with Peter?"
The boy looked at the papers and colors, then grudgingly agreed.
Peter was apparently a rather butterball blond boy in overalls with a lolly in his hand, busy drawing vaguely human shapes with a crayon on the paper and, accidentally, desk. James had already gathered a large portion of the crayons for himself, piling them in front of his and informing Peter importantly, "These are mine."
"I wanna red," Peter argued as he reached over.
James covered them protectively. "Mine!"
Peter stuck out his tongue, then proceed to suck on his lolly, hugging a stuffed mouse to him and continuing to color with the grey in his hand. "Red's stoopid collar anyway."
"Is! Blue's better." Peter had happened to have a blue on the floor next to him, and waved it in front of James' face teasingly, then drew a rather convincing square. "Square!"
James made a face and set to coloring, taking to swiping any crayon Peter happened to put down for a moment. Yet Peter managed to get them back using his stuff mouse, setting the mouse on a crayon and sliding it over hidden. It was very sneaky, and James couldn't figure out how the boy managed to steal from his pile, when the boy seemed more interested in his lolly and mouse, moving it all over the table like that.
Yet the crayon pile didn't interest James for long, for so the little red-headed girl was back. "Hi, James . . .," she said shyly, rocking gently and hugging her doll.
"Go way!" he ordered, making a face and rushing away, Lily on his trail in a slowly, deliberate way, stepping back on her heels, then snapping down the rest of her foot. Peter watched James go, then wrapped his arms around the pile and pulled it towards him.
"Mine!" he giggled, imitating James.
The door's bell jiggled, and Ms. Goose smiled warmly the dark and curly-hair boy in obvious wizarding robes entered, hand firmly clenched in his father's hand. It was only a few minutes before little Severus was left alone with Ms. Goose still smiling warmly down at him, and he squirmed, clutching his bag protectively and lip quivering.
"Well, then, why down you go sit over by Remus, Severus? There's a nice open area for you to play in." Even as she was speaking, and hand was guiding him over to a boy with blocks scattered around, an empty area just alongside.
"Now, you be good."
Severus stood nervously for a moment, looking wildly around as the witch left. Remus had barely noticed his arrival, switching the R and L blocks around the J, then setting more blocks over them.
"Hi . . ."
The boy looked up and flashed a gappy smile. "Hi!" He waved as well, expressing his welcome even more. "'M 'Emus." He reached alongside him and pulled out an old, worn stuffed wolf with a nightcap and its tongue out. "N dis is Mistah Boo Boo."
Since welcome was offered, Severus sat and expressed his own name while still holding his bag protectively. Remus looked at it curiously, but then went to his blocks, enjoying using Mister Boo Boo as a battering ram to send the blocks flying. Severus moved a few feet away for his own protection.
He opened the bag and pulled out several small bottles and then a large pot with the words My First Potions emblazed on the side. It was prefilled with some liquid, which as both safe to drink or touch, that wouldn't spill in the bag and most of the potions one could "make" consisted of bubbles, fizzing, and/or changing colors, but it was entertaining, and safe.
Remus had looked over with renewed interest as Severus started to open vials and pour the contents in indiscriminately, then awe at the results. "Can I . . .?" he asked, the blocks forgotten momentarily.
Severus looked at him suspiciously, but remembered the order to "Play Nice" and grudgingly handed over an ugly little bottle that was sticky and yucky. No way would he share his good bottles.
"You ca't pour the whole ting in," he stated, watching warily as Remus uncapped the vial and made a face at the smell.
"Smells yucky." Even still, he poured in a generous amount, much to Severus' chagrin. Both watched as the "potion" both bubbled and changed colors, then as a vapor moved up.
Severus pouted and crossed his arms. He had been hoping nothing would have happened for the other boy, and was put out that something had happened. Then he smiled wickedly. "'nd now you have ta dwink it!"
Remus reared back. "Uh uh! M not drinkin' 'at!"
"You gotta. Made it for you."
"No! Not drinkin' anyting you make!" He made a face and clutched Mister Boo Boo. "Mister Boo Boo don't like it! Says it yucky!"
That hurt. "Fine! Don't dwink it!" With a huff, he went back to his potion, adding more ingredients, as the previous ones were staring to fade, returning the solution to its original properties. Remus followed suit, going back to his blocks that had been scattered during his absence by Lily and ignoring the curly-haired boy.
Lily giggled, peeking around the large chair. James gave a yelp and backed away. He would never, he vowed, give a girl her doll back. Never, never, never! "Leave me alone!"
She giggled again and made to hug and kiss him, but James ducked nimbly aside and pushed her away. Lily looked hurt for a moment, but continued her pursuit, having backed James into a corner.
"I jus' wanna give you a kiss. You save Baby."
His yell surprised Lily, and she stumbled back. Yet her foot caught and Lily tripped, landing hard on a block Mister Boo Boo had knocked over this way earlier in the day. Her cry filled the whole nursery, and Ms. Goose rushed over, gathering her up.
"James!" she scolded instantly. "You know better than to push Lily!"
"I din push her!" he countered. "I din!"
Lily's cries were subsiding, but Ms. Goose took James' hand. "You're getting a Time-Out, young man!"
"NO! NO!" James screamed, trying to break away as Ms. Goose picked him up and set him in the Time-Out area behind a fence. There was nothing to play with in here and he didn't push her! "NO!"
"You better behave or you'll be spending a lot of time in Time-Out!" And Ms. Goose walked away, leaving James to rent and rave himself into a sullen quiet, muttering about, "Stoopid girls."
Lily rubbed her bottom, feeling slightly guilty that she hadn't told Ms. Goose that she hadn't been pushed, but fallen, but James deserved being in Time-Out for a bit. He wouldn't let her give him a little kiss! She ran over to the crayons.
"Mine!" Peter stated importantly.
"Can I puhwease have one?" Lily asked, blinking her green eyes and already reaching. Peter relented and let her have one, more interested in drawing his picture than guarding crayons. Let someone else guard, so long as he could have too. "Tank you!"
Again a sort of peacefulness settled on the nursery. Once James ten-minute Time-Out was over, he trudged over to Remus and Severus, interested in what they were doing. Remus had made a rather interesting, if wobbly, tower over his toy, using the numbers 1, 2, 3, 5, and 7 as the base. Severus' potion, aside from making Remus sneeze as the fumes made their way over, had vapors that were changing colors and making interesting animals. A rabbit was bouncing though the air and a fox primping floating in the air, and a snake was weaving through Remus' tower.
James handed Remus a block. "Tanks," Remus grinned, standing up on tiptoe to place the block up, the letter M showing. The vapor snake rested its head on the block.
"Snakes are pooh," James declared, brushing it away and destroying it. "I likes lions!"
Severus scowled, having enjoyed watching the shadow of the reptile. "No one asks you," he muttered, dropping a few more liquids. Remus merely smiled, hugging his toy and watching the smoke-fox try to get some grapes, and the rabbit riding a turtle.
"I wanna try," James said, picking up a big red vial.
"You gots to asks first," Remus frowned, looking disapprovingly at the possible stealer. He had to ask permission before he got to pour something, so James should too.
"And you can't! 'S mine!" Severus snapped, grabbing the vial back and clutching it protectively.
It was true logic. The vial wasn't James', so he couldn't use it, and he couldn't just take it. That'd earn another Time-Out. No more Time-Outs. Never again. He'd be a good boy the rest of his life, never get in trouble. "Don't wants to, anyway."
"Good, cuz you can't," Severus stated.
"Said I din want to!"
Ms. Goose suddenly appeared. "James, are you causing trouble?"
"No, Ms. Goose," he said innocently. "I jus want to see his . . . his ting."
The witch looked at the three toddlers, a smile still on her face. "Well, if you ask, I'm sure Severus wouldn't mind sharing, would you, dear?"
Severus' mouth dropped. This was his! He already shared once! It wasn't fair! Yet he couldn't say that to an adult. He knew better. "Okay," he muttered, rolling away a block that had been foolish to turn round at that moment. Two of the letters had merged to read HA.
James needed no second invitation, grabbing the big red vial and pouring the whole thing in. Severus looked ready to scream, Remus upset that he didn't get to pour that much in, and even Ms. Goose winced at the amount, but the results were pleasing for the children, small wizzing pops and bangs like fire works.
"Look what I di!" James exclaimed, clapping his hands.
"I'm sure Severus helped," Ms. Goose smiled. "You three play nice, okay."
After she had walked away, Severus made it clear in his toddler way that there would be no more sharing of his ingredients, and Remus again knocked down the tower only to start building another quietly. James sat watching the two quiet children amuse themselves, Severus fishing out a block that had landed in the liquid, and Remus setting down an N, 0, and upside-down ?, O, and M in no particular order. They were quiet and busy in their own little worlds, and he got up before he became like them.
Pleased to see that Lily was busy coloring flowers and houses, he went over to some cushions and started to jump up and down like he was flying. One day he'd have a broom just like his daddy's, and he'd go really, really fast! And he'd play Qui'itch! And score lots of points and have all the puppies and candies in the world! Yeah!
"'M Qui'itch Boy! ZOOM!" suddenly screamed a running figure through the doors, two disheveled parents following. James instantly stopped jumping, creeping over to the frame to watch the lobby as the parents signed in their cape-wearing, broom-holding, sugar-high son. "ZOOM! ZOOMZOOMZOOM!"
"Sirius Mortimer Black! You settle down or your father'll take away your broom!"
"NO! NO! 'LL BE GOOD!"
"Indoor voice, Sirius," Mr. Black sighed, rubbing the bridge of his nose wearily. "Make me take the broom away, dear, make me the bad guy."
"Now you be good, dear," Mrs. Black smiled, bending down to kiss her son good-bye.
"Eww! NO! NO!" Sirius ducked away, rushing around the room.
"Bye, dear," Mrs. Black smiled.
"Good luck," Mr. Black offered to Ms. Goose, then looking at his wife. "All right, you were right. No more sugar."
Ms. Goose wished them farewell, then looked at the living tornado. "Settle down, Sirius, and we'll go by the other children. Yes, that is a lovely broom!"
Spinning in circles, Sirius followed, then looked around at the children. "Sirius, dear, this is James," Ms. Goose introduced, spying James immediately, as the toddler had been eavesdropping. "James, Sirius."
"Hi," James smiled.
"HI! I'M QUI'ITCH BOY! FAST AS SPEEDIN' BIRDY!"
Ms. Goose winced at the volume, and repeated the order given by the parents. "Siriu, indoor voice, otherwise Time-Out!"
James shuddered, but Sirius looked unperturbed at the prophesy. "Otay! ZOOM!" And with that, he rushed away, cape billowing. James quickly followed suit, catching up with Sirius at the chairs, as he was jumping up and down.
"It fwies!" Sirius stated in a conspiracy-like whisper. "Well, when Da puts da charm backs on!" He laughed, then pulled down his rather large shirt with a black dog's head on it. "See! I'm on FIDO PRIDE!" He finished it with a yell, immensely proud of his Kid Quidditch team. "I'm de Beat-ser! Ah hit one, and it when WHOOSH! and knocks Parsely Sprouts offa his broom! And Ah gots a points, knockin the Quaddle trough wit my paddle!"
James was impressed. His parents wouldn't let him go on a Kid Quidditch team (forgo the thought that he didn't know they existed until this moment). "Qui'itch isso cool!"
"Whoo! Look it that!" Sirius said, pointing at the flying ghosts of players over Severus and Remus. It was almost the worst possible thing that could have come up at that moment. "Can I try dat?"
"He don't share," James whispered bitterly. "Nd it's stoopid anyway!"
Sirius didn't looked convinced, but obviously this boy would know, and the toy did look rather boring. Not as cool as his broom, which he was currently riding by jumping up and down.
"Oh, James!" Lily called, sneaking up on the two boys. "I made you sumting!" She held up a piece of paper. "Dis is me and dis is you and dis is our daughter!" She smiled proudly. "Isn't it pritty?" James looked horrified.
"You gots a girl fiend?" Sirius asked, disgusted and making a face. "Girls pfft!" He blew a raspberry.
"I don'ts! I don like you!"
Lily looked like she was going to cry. "James . . ." She made to hug him, but James reverted to the age-old game of playing hard-to-get.
"James!" Lily took off after him.
Sirius made a face, hopping over like a rabbit, broom dragging, to Peter. "Hi!" he said brightly.
Peter jumped in surprise from the loudness. "Hi," he said shyly, wondering if this boy was going to take away his crayons too.
"Wahcha coloring? It a doggy!"
The boy frowned. It was a duck! But he didn't say anything, trying now to make his duck look like a dog. Meanwhile Sirius took five crayons in hand and scribbled, and then started to draw.
"Dat me! I scored points day!" he informed Peter. "And 'll score a lot more when I'm bigger!"
Peter looked uninterested, watching the duck in smoke, rubbing his head. Suddenly he realized his lolly was stuck in his hair.
"James says he's mean!" Sirius pouted, seeing Severus was commanding attention.
"Don't know," the blond-haired boy said painfully, trying to yank the lolly out of his hair. He whimpered with each tug.
"Mean people should be beats on the 'ead!"
Peter was remembering another mean boy. "Wit a stick," he agreed, still yanking.
"Wants sum help?" Sirius asked.
With pain-caused tears, Peter nodded. He obviously expected the help an adult would give, gentle and caring, not Toddler Help. Sirius merely took the stick and yanked hard, causing Peter to scream. The lolly didn't let go on the first tug, but after about three tugs, the lolly came away with a few clumps of hair, giving Peter a bit of a bald spot.
"Don be a baby. Here!"
Peter continued to cry, head hurting, so Sirius made a hasty exit away from the scene of the crime. He kept the lolly, for Peter hadn't seemed to want it back.
James was rushing around with Lily on his tail, and they circled Remus and Severus. Severus looked annoyed, protecting his vials and potions from being trampled, and Remus was looking upset that James had accidentally knocked down his town. Luckily his gaze missed Lily kicking Mister Boo Boo, otherwise upset wouldn't have been the word to use.
Sirius, picking the hair off the lolly, looked at the shadows Severus' potion made. He wanted to try, it wasn't fair that boy wouldn't share! He deserved to get something to show that he was being mean!
Mean people should be beat on the head, with a stick like Peter said. He looked at his broom, then smiled mischievously. It worked in Quidditch, beating people up . . .
Whistling, or attempting to, Sirius moved over to stand behind Severus, who was clapping at the turn his potion was making. Remus was crawling on all floors, gathering his blocks into a relatively neat pile. Peter was merely sniffing to himself, seeing as no one was rushing to comfort him. He had been wondering where his lolly went to, then saw it in Sirius' hand and was making his way over. Lily, laughing and making kissy faces, was still chasing James around in circles.
Sirius hefted his broom like a bat, tongue out as he took aim like he did during a game. Then he started to swing—
"Dat's MY LOLL—AHH!" Peter yelled, then scampered back as the bat started his way, falling back onto Remus' pile of blocks painfully.
The broom continued on its merry way towards Severus' back, but luckily a charm was kicking in—the one that slowed the broom down if it exceeded a speed (used for when a child was falling), slowing the force like a cushion. Yet it was enough force to push Severus forward into his potion, spilling it all over the floor . . . and Mister Boo Boo.
Remus, who had been trying to help crying and bleeding Peter and his blocks, looked on his horror as his favorite toy was covered in the liquid, staining it, making it unclean and ruin and not fluffy! "MISTER BOO BOO!" he screamed, throwing himself over to get his toy.
Unfortunately, Lily had been rounding James back this way. The boy slid on the spilt potion, landing painfully on his back with an OOF! and SQUELCH! from Mister Boo Boo. Remus toppled over him, trying to wrench his toy out. The dripping red wolf was retrieved, and he clutched it, loudly crying at its destruction from fluffy toy to terrible accident.
Ms. Goose rushed over, too late. Only Sirius and Lily were left standing, Lily making her way over to James and Sirius backing away, attempting to hide the broom behind his back. Within a few moments, he too joined the rest of crying toddlers (from behind the Time-Out fence) as she confiscated the toy, stomping his foot and claiming he didn't do it, he was told to.
"You're going to stay in there until you think out what you did, Sirius! You could have killed Severus!" Ms. Goose scolded.
Peter, having retrieved his lolly, went back to his table and curled under, hiding and hoping everything would settle down. He nursed his wounds, rubbing his head where the lolly had been stuck.
Remus was sitting, rocking back and forth, sniffing as he hugged Mister Boo Boo. No one would want to hold the toy now, but Remus kept holding him and telling the toy "it be all right" and "I still likes you."
Severus scowled at the ranting Sirius in Time-Out. The timer had been set to twenty minutes, and unheard of time, but that meanie deserved it. He hit him and caused his potion to spill. And Ms. Goose was throwing it all away! His pretty kit! Didn't anyone like it other than him!
James was still laying on the floor, in the pool and covered with stains from the red liquid and blinking blearily at the ceiling, even though the pain had long subsided. His wind hadn't returned.
Suddenly, Lily entered his skewed eyesight, hugging her doll protectively. Her face had been splattered red by the potion, and the hem of her dress and shoes were stained the color as well. But the doll was clean. She had shielded the silly toy, now smoothing the dress.
James groaned and closed his eyes, too tired to run away. And then he felt a peck on the tip of his nose where Lily had bent down kissed him.
Ms. Goose didn't think NapTime came soon enough, and, as she cleaned up the mess, tidying the nursery, she wondered how anyone would survive should they ever met again.
A/N: All done!! I think they aged during the story. If you didn't notice, this story eluded to a lot of what we know happens in the Harry Potter Universe. A whole bunch of symbols are used. And to explain the kids:
James—I made him a little pompous, but sounds like an only-child rich toddler.
Peter—Kind of a lot of hints to his character, especially at the end.
Severus—Curly hair! He he. I had curly hair as a child, then my mom cut it and it's all straight! And I couldn't resist My First Potions, although that did spell it out a bit.
Remus—Smart little cookie, no?
Lily—A girl always falls for a boy and tries to kiss him, doesn't it seem? Oh, nursery crushes.
Sirius—A little ball of energy! And he doesn't think! You always have a kid that likes to cause harmless trouble or acts tough. (Like Z.A.M.) And while the mother's horrified, the father's like, "Go, Zach!"
If you would like to see my wonderful 1-hour attempt at the little Marauders, you can go here to DayCare Picture Menu at http://hometown.aol.com/kmbrly84/