Joined: 21 December 2009
Note: Harry Potter Series are my addiction. Though it is my first time writing on Harry Potter, I always keep imagining stuff on them. The marauders (Padfoot, Prongs, Moony and Wormtail) were only briefly described in the book and of course all of us wish that they had a separate book or series. So here is an one shot on them along with Lily in their final year of Hogwarts. Peter is only present as he could be avoided.
OS- Perks of Friendship
"I solemnly swear that I am up to no good," said a young boy with a pale face and light brown hair as he opened the marauders' map tapping it with his wand and smiled on spotting Lily Evans.
Spring was dawning with summer approaching in Hogwarts. The last week of March was here in the year of 1978.
A beautiful young girl with thick, dark red hair that fell to her shoulders and bright green almond-shaped eyes was in the Hogwarts library with her eyes buried in a book.
She seemed to be lost in the book when someone came and stood near her and said, "Lily!"
Lily looked up to see her friend Remus Lupin who was smiling at her.
"May I?" asked Lupin motioning to the chair next to Lily's and his question was answered with a nod from Lily.
Lupin settled down and remarked, "Studying like any other day."
At this Lily gave an instant reply, "Since I have started dating James, no day has been like any other day."
"I know what you mean," replied Lupin. "I have been with him and Sirius for almost 7 years now; and every moment is unpredictable," he added.
"Sirius Black!," taunted Lily with annoyance clearly visible in her voice.
Noting this, Lupin asked "Still not in good terms with Sirius?"
"I won't say that exactly," replied back Lily with a confused look that said that she herself was unsure about her exact opinion about Sirius. Lily then pointed out, "Sirius is witty and talented but also arrogant and has a bad habit of bullying people who he dislikes and encouraging James in all notorious ways."
Lupin smiled and explained, "Sirius considers James as his brother. For Sirius, James is the only family. It is just that he loves James too much that he acts so reckless at times."
"Don't you feel left out at times?" questioned Lily.
Lupin laughed at this and countered, "Never felt so. I know they both would lay down their life for me just like they would for each other. Also, they could but did not leave me alone in my 'furry little problem' as James says it."
"I would do the same too... lay down my life for your safety," vowed Lily with a smile.
Remus replied, "And I need not say that we all would do the same for you if needed." He further added, "By all I mean Sirius too."
"I know that Sirius would do that. No matter what I can never have any ambiguity regarding his loyalty," admitted Lily.
"Then what grudge do you hold against him?" enquired Lupin stressing the word you'.
Lily pondered on it for few minutes but was unable to voice her views against Sirius.
Lupin affirmed, "I guess there are no issues."
"Actually there is not one," chided Lily not wanting to except defeat.
Lupin was ready to clear all doubts and stated, "I am all ears."
"He nearly ended in Azkaban yesterday," started Lily.
"That's because James nearly died yesterday," replied Lupin in an impulse.
Lily's face turned pale at this thought but nevertheless said, "Luckily, Dumbledore managed to save him as he fell from his broomstick."
"Fortunately Sirius saw the buldger hitting James and him losing his balance. Also, he was quick enough to snatch the mike from the commenter and give a shout out about it," corrected Lupin.
Lily yet argued, "But he still shouldn't have tried to use the killing curse on the Slytherin captain. I know he loathes all Slytherins but still..."
"He believed that they had jinxed the buldgers as the buldgers only went after James throughout the entire game," spoke Lupin cutting Lily short.
"He jumped to the conclusion. You should have seen the fear on James face when Sirius was being warned by Dumbledore against expulsion for laying blame without any proof," claimed Lily shuddering at the thought of Hogwarts without Sirius.
"But you missed James' proud look when Sirius' accusations were proved true," boasted Lupin with a contented look on his face.
"Sirius was being stubborn though. He had the guts to mouth his disapproval to Dumbledore when the latter banned him from further Quidditch matches. I tried to stop him but he just turned a deaf ear to my words," spoke Lily expressing her displeasure at this action of Sirius'.
Lupin laughed at this and protested, "Sirius is a rebel by nature. How can he afford to miss the final match of this year. He has already imagined James as the Gryffindor captain holding the Quidditch cup. Even Dumbledore had to give in."
Lily recalled the latter part and acknowledged, "Sirius gave him no choice though he still managed to end up in detention for today."
Lupin smirked at this, "Sirius is used to detentions and he is not even complaining. Plus these are traits of his personality but deep down he is a true-hearted person who loves his friends."
"But he still made James unhappy," commented Lily with a sigh.
Lupin could see that all this was heading somewhere else now. He questioned, "What are you implying?"
Lily decided to come to the point and confessed, "Yesterday James wouldn't let even one of us stay with him in the hospital wing for the night; reason being Sirius. All of us i.e. you, Peter and I except Sirius were insisting him to choose one of us to stay with. But one look at Sirius and he refused to any company. It was all due to the fact that Sirius had not wanted to stay back and this upset him." After taking a moment to catch a breath she went on, "Even in the morning, James was staring near the window for a while; the place where Sirius would stand as he didn't turn up in the morning too. I know he has detention today but still he could still make a visit. In fact after visiting the hospital wing, I saw Sirius coming from the owlery and when I enquired he just told me that he had an important letter to send. And then he rushed off from there."
Lupin knew that Lily was saying all this as she didn't know Sirius well enough. He thought that clearing her all doubts was necessary. He revealed, "Sirius knew that James won't be able to choose one of us and all four of us couldn't stay as Madam Pomfrey wouldn't have that. I saw him wink at James right before James said that he wanted to be alone for the night. After we returned to the common room, Sirius took the invisibility cloak and the map and sneaked out. I am sure the pair of them were up all night chatting. Sirius was standing near the window when we came in the morning; I know so because I was right next to Sirius and he had tapped me before leaving. About the letter, I am sure it must have been something that couldn't have waited."
Lily was awe-struck on hearing this but didn't want to except defeat so protested, "But he is now in detention and James in the Quidditch field where his team is practicing while he is sulking over the remains of his broken broomstick. He wouldn't even allow me to comfort him. At times I feel James loves Quidditch more than me."
"And that is Sirius' fault too?" asked Lupin raising his eyebrows. He further continued "Plus James doesn't love Quidditch more than you. Quidditch is his passion; gladly he had caught the snitch before the fall else losing from Slytherin would not have gone too well with him. About his broom, he'll be alright. It's just that he had got this broom on Christmas and he can't ask his parents for a new one. Not that they would refuse, they totally pamper him; but they would worry about his safety. So, James can't inform them about this mishap."
"But Sirius could have cheered James up if he was not in detention. James hasn't eaten anything since morning," whispered Lily with anxiety on her face.
Lupin now understood that Lily was upset because James was not being himself and she felt that only Sirius could fix this but didn't want to admit so. In an attempt to cheer Lily up he offered, "We can fix James' mood too. I have a plan. What to give it a shot?"
Lupin, Lily and Peter along with James were sitting in the Quidditch field and having a feast from the food the former three had sneaked out from the kitchen.
"I have never seen so many house elves before. The Hogwarts kitchen is brilliant," remarked Lily while stuffing a cupcake.
"The kitchen was Peter's discovery," informed Lupin.
"Really? I thought it would have been Sirius' considering his love for food," exclaimed Lily with disbelief visible on her face.
James on hearing this boasted, "Sirius can survive on anything. He is not at all choosy when it comes to food. If needed he starve with hunger for days altogether."
"Looks like someone kept me out of the party," snapped a tall, well-built, darkly handsome man with long lustrous black hair and an air of casual elegance' around him walking towards the others.
Peter noticing a huge package in Sirius' hand asked, "What's that you carrying?"
Sirius ignored Peter and grabbed a loaf of bread. While eating he chided, "I am sure I was left out on purpose." He did so while looking at Lily.
Lily just rolled her eyes at this statement and shot back, "I can't leave you out even if I want to. It just doesn't seem feasible."
Lupin in an attempt to change the topic interrogated, "How come you are not in detention? Wasn't it supposed to last till late night?"
"Not happy to see me, are we? Changed sides or what, Lupin?" whined Sirius with a glint of mischief in his eyes.
"Sirius, hope you didn't skip it. I don't want you to be stopped from the entering the Quidditch grounds on the day of the final match," demanded James voicing his concern.
"As if anyone can stop me from watching James win the Quidditch cup. On a side note, seizing a chance I rushed to gift something to my best friend. And What's life without a little risk'," marveled Sirius handing James the package that he was carrying.
James tore the brown paper and saw a shinning broomstick. It was the same one that he had been bragging about ever since it was launched just a week ago. James quickly pulled Sirius into a hug.
"Before you start with your ranting; let me clear some stuff out. This is not your birthday gift which is just a few days away now. I had planned on giving it you ever since you have been drooling over it. And you can't consider this as your birthday gift too as I have already thought something else for it like I revealed last week," uttered Sirius with a laugh playing on his lips seeing his best friend so excited.
The other players from the field had also gathered around them seeing the commotion. All were overjoyed on seeing the broomstick, each wanting to have a go on it.
"Let James have the first ride," ordered Sirius. "He can surely take someone to keep him company though."
James dashed his eyes from Lily to Sirius unable to decide who to take first.
Seeing James like this Sirius proclaimed, "James, what are you waiting for take Lily with you. I need to return back for detention too and but only after a round on the broom."
James smiled and indicated Lily to come with him which she happily obliged too.
Lupin and Sirius were chatting while Peter was aiding the other Quidditch players in the practice.
"You had intended to gift him the broomstick for his birthday, right?" inquired Lupin.
Sirius instructed, "Don't tell James this."
"So the urgent letter that you had sent this morning was related to this," theorized Lupin.
Sirius chuckled and said, "Lily has been complaining about me again."
Lupin retorted, "It's not that."
Sirius laughed and confided, "I know what her opinion about me is and I am cool with it. But I totally adore her. Reason being she is unlike other girls and perfect for James."
Lupin advised, "But shouldn't you mend your relationship with her for James' sake?"
"It will with time and she is still getting to know James. She deserves some time and there is no need to pressurize her," reasoned Sirius understanding the situation.
"I guess I must let it be then. By the way what do you plan to get James for his birthday now?" asked Lupin raising his eyebrows.
"A two way mirror," replied Sirius instantly. He then explained, "It's a mirror through which we can communicate daily. He'll have one part and I'll keep the other one. I had intended to give it as a wedding gift since after that we won't be living in the same house as Lily won't approve of it."
Lupin praised Sirius saying, "That's very thoughtful."
"Anyways, I should return for my detention. I don't want to be late for our midnight adventures. Hope you had the potion today," said Sirius with a sigh.
Lupin knew this was Sirius' way to remind him about the potion and he simply smiled at him.
Lily was enjoying riding on the broom with James souring high in the sky. Realizing a lot of time had passed away she said, "James, I think it's enough for today. Let others have a chance too."
"Are you not enjoying?" asked James as he was surprised to hear this as lately due to Quidditch he had not given Lily time and she had not approved of it.
Lily took a deep sigh and replied, "Sirius needs to return for his detention. I don't want him to get deeper into trouble than he already is."
James was glad to see Lily voicing her concern regarding Sirius. He assured Lily, "Sirius make seem irresponsible but he is only immature. Not to forget Lupin is there to tell him off."
"I am not too sure about him following Lupin's advice. He did say that he wanted to ride the broom before going back. We wouldn't want to hurt him in case he leaves," reasoned Lily.
James turned around to look at Lily who was sitting right behind him to convince her, "I know Sirius well. If it would have been a Slytherin in place of you, he would have torn me apart. But since it is you, all he is going to do is tease me about it."
Lily felt herself drowning in the hazel brown eyes of James. She wondered how she had managed to avoid this man for so many years.
Seeing that Lily was lost somewhere James apologized, "I am sorry. I shouldn't talk about Sirius so often since you don't approve of him."
"I definitely don't fawn over his bad boy image like other girls since I love you but Sirius is definitely a friend," admitted Lily.
James beamed on hearing this, glad that his best friend and his love were finally starting to get along. He turned around yet again and flew towards the sea with Lily holding him tight and ruffling his black hair.
Sirius walked out of detention to find a shadow waiting for him.
"I brought you dinner," greeted Lily who was waiting for Sirius to get free.
Sirius took what Lily handed to him and started stuffing himself. He muttered, "I was expecting James to turn up though."
"It is almost time for Lupin's transformation so I decided to come for you," explained Lily.
Sirius smirked and replied, "That was sweet of you. I am surprised that you didn't leave me out."
Lily ignored Sirius' snide and wrapped the invisibility cloak around both of them.
"You finally getting a hang of it," praised Sirius walking along with Lily towards the forbidden forest.
Lily confessed, "It's fun actually. Of course I am breaking rules but with you I learnt to have the nerve to do so."
Sirius smiled and stated, "It's the best compliment I have got especially considering the fact that it's coming from you."
"You too said that you adore me," teased Lily recalling her conversation with Lupin after the broom ride.
"Aah! Lupin! Should have known," exclaimed Sirius.
Lily got alarmed and said, "Lupin did not mean to tell on you. He just..."
"Hey calm down. I didn't mean it in that way. Lupin only intends our good, I am well aware of that. He is a gem of a person," clarified Sirius cutting Lily short.
Lily then spoke, "I was delighted to learn that you see James and me getting married."
"I can't imagine anyone other than you being his wife," remarked Sirius.
Lily not fully convinced asked, "Really?"
Sirius confided, "Yes, because you occupy a special place in James' heart. Moreover, you have always supported Lupin and been there for him. Never made him feel ashamed of the fact that he is a werewolf and thereby reduced his fear of rejection. You have always helped Peter and stood up for him. You are true Gryffindor brave enough to hang out with us even at full moon nights in spite of not being an animagus. And..."
"I want to hear it," urged Lily touched by Sirius' words.
Sirius continued, "And you have always understood James and mine relationship. You have admired and respected our brotherly love though I am sure you'll deny this fact now."
Lily opened her mouth to chide Sirius but couldn't bring herself to do so."
"And most importantly, you don't agree to your girl friends' requests when they ask you to set them up with me," joked Sirius.
Lily laughed at the latter part of Sirius' words and said, "That is only because I can't imagine a mischievous trouble maker like you actually pampering a girl."
"Hey! I am not that lousy," protested Sirius.
Lily answered, "I did not mean to offend you. I am sure that if you actually ever will love a girl from your heart then no one ever would be able to love her better than you."
Sirius gulped that last bite of the food and said, "I love you but I am sure there are people who can shower you with greater love. You are an amazing person and a great friend of mine though we rarely get along but yet we do share an understanding."
"I didn't mean that sentence as a friend or family. I meant the kind of love James and I share," explained Lily.
"The probability of me harboring that kind of love is next to zero," reported Sirius.
Lily exclaimed at this, "Let's just wait and see when cupid strikes."
"Sorry to burst your bubble but even a love potion can't make me fall for someone and you are talking about the muggle god of love," boasted Sirius.
Lily decided to change the topic and speak what she actually wanted to. "I want us to put aside all our differences and actually become friends," stammered Lily.
Sirius was taken aback at these words. He simply said, "You have a very high opinion about me; suddenly what changed?"
"You have a pure soul and that is what I love about you," acknowledged Lily.
Sirius argued, "According to you, I hex people for fun. Play pranks on others that don't go well with them. And I am so reckless and at times I put lives at stake."
Taking a deep sigh Lily went on, "I held that view ages back. It started changing for the fifth year only but I still am yet to learn more about you. Though I think you do act as an idiot at times."
"Well, I guess then I can officially be James' best man at your wedding. This thought was making me apprehensive for a long time as I was afraid that you might express your displeasure at this," teased Sirius.
Hearing this Lily mentioned, "Since you talking about James and my wedding, there is something I have decided regarding you. And I know James would be ecstatic to hear it."
Sirius was hanging on every word that Lily was speaking. They had reached the forbidden forest and could clearly see the rest waiting there for them to arrive. Sirius flung the cloak off them and folded it waiting for Lily to speak.
Lily finally declared, "That you should be the godfather of our first child."
Sirius immediately hugged Lily on hearing this who responded to it. James, Lupin and Peter were bewildered to see it. They all approached the pair.
"Looks like things are perfect between you too," approved James with a smile.
Sirius moved away from Lily and hugged James.
Lupin laughed and congratulated them on their new found friendship, "This is the best news I have ever got."
"I have better," spoke Sirius hugging Lupin now.
Peter in a timid voice asked, "What news?" but all he also got a hug as a reply.
After Sirius had hugged everyone he announced, "James need not worry about Lily refusing to marry him as she has already started dreaming about it."
Lily and James both blushed at Sirius' words.
"And even better, I am going to be godfather to your first child as per Lily," concluded Sirius with a twinkle in his eyes.
Lupin joked at this, "I was hoping I'd get that part; considering the fact that I am more responsible and mature."
James decided to play again, "I had Lupin in my mind too."
"You both can't fool me. I know both of you are bursting with happiness," proclaimed Sirius who knew his friends really well.
"You'd make a brilliant godfather," commented Lupin.
James then spoke, "Sirius, with you being around, I would never have to worry about my child because you'd always act like a shield for..."
At that very moment, Lupin's transformation began and he ran into the jungle closely followed by Sirius and Peter transforming into a dog and rat respectively.
"For him or for her?" questioned Lily.
James answered, "Won't make much of a difference as long as I'll have you and my friends with me."
Lily moved to pick up the cloak that Sirius had dropped in excitement. She then proceeded to fold the map when James pulled her into a hug resulting in the map slipping from her hands. James then kissed Lily, smashing his lips with hers. After a few moments, James pulled away while Lily was still lost in the trance.
James just before transforming into the stag and following the others along with Lily closed the map saying, "Mischief Managed!"
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