“I want to know what they’re planning!”
“It can’t be that big. They would never do anything to get themselves kicked off the team.”
“Even Lily is worried though.”
James shot an envious look at Remus. “How do you know that?”
“Lily and I talk all the time.” Remus told him, a bit smugly. It was always nice to make the famous James Potter jealous, especially when it was over a girl.
“Look, they’re probably just all talk, trying to scare us,” Peter interjected.
“And they’re doing a good job,” James mumbled, ruffling his hair for the tittering girls that sat only yards away from them by the lake. They promptly broke out into giggles when he did that.
“You and Sirius are the most infuriating people I know,” Remus mumbled angrily, slamming his book shut.
“So we flirt with attractive females, what’s the big deal,” James asked him as he casually looked over Remus’s head and winked at the girls. “Anyways, don’t distract me. You have to have some idea Remus! You’re the smart one!”
“Though there is no denying that I have no more idea than you what they might be planning,” Remus answered honestly, looking pensively at the castle from his spot at the base of the tree. Sirius and Kristen had been spending every moment together for the past two weeks, something that was in no way helping any of the rumors that they seemed so eager to be rid of. “I don’t see how it could not be something big though, they’re putting way to much time into planning it.”
“Unless they’re just trying to scare us,” Peter reminded them.
“Yes, that could be their plan as well.” Remus agreed pensively. “My only fear is that it’s against one of us.”
“One of us?” James asked suddenly, looking terrified. Though anyone that knew Sirius or Kristen (and that was just separately, no one yet knew what could happen when they collaborated in secret) would consent that he had more than enough reason to be frightened. “Why do you think that?”
“Well, they refuse to tell us what’s going on, they laugh randomly when we’re around, and if they pull something on anyone else they’ll be in huge trouble. They know that if they do something to us we won’t turn them in. It’s a good plan actually.”
“Won’t turn them in my arse,” James told him defiantly. “If they turn me…lime green or something, you better believe I’m going to McGonagall!”
“And be responsible for the loss of the quiditch cup? I doubt it,” Peter countered him with a knowing grin. “And it would give them rights to hate you until we graduate.”
“That’s not a terribly long time,” James thought over his options. It would really suck to lose the cup, but Kristen and Sirius not speaking to him for three years seemed like a very nice perk. “Fine,” he sighed in defeat, knowing full well that he could never turn them in.
* * *
“So you’re sure we won’t get caught?”
“Positive!” Kristen told him brightly. “There will be absolutely nothing to incriminate us except the suspicion that it had something to do with the Marauders, and they can’t book us for that alone!”
Sirius smiled widely at her as she paced the owlry, their confirmation letter taking ages to return. “This is wicked! It’ll be the best prank ever!”
“It is somewhat a shame that we can’t take credit for it,” Kristen mused idly. “Maybe when we graduate.”
“Do we really have to be a part of it though? I mean, surely we could do this without involving ourselves or the other Gryffindors, it’s not really fair.”
“Our dose is going to be light. We’re just going to frame a section of the Slytherin table and get ourselves completely in the clear. Who in their right mind would do this to themselves?”
“Apparently us,” Sirius pointed out, peering his eyes as an owl came soaring towards them. “Getting the invisibility cloak should be easy anyhow, as long as James doesn’t pick that one night to go off with Zoe.”
“And the map, you have to get that, don’t forget. I don’t even want to think of what our punishment would be for sneaking around in the middle of the night.”
“That’ll be even easier, it doesn’t matter if I take that! So when’s this all going down? Should we do it after the match, just in case?”
Kristen contemplated that. “Maybe, that’s a good idea, just in case you know. James might die from suspicion before then, Merlin he’s been on our case!”
“We can’t rightly blame him, just think if the situation were reversed. We should just bow down and let the others know.”
“The more people that know, the more likely we are to get caught. Lily is already suspicious and she doesn’t even know that we’re planning something!”
“It seems so wrong though,” Sirius pouted, his elegant face pulling it off beautifully. “We’re the Marauders, not just Krissie and Sirius.”
Kristen had to agree with him on that one. It really didn’t seem right. “Okay, maybe, but only James at first, Remus might flip out and you know the mouth that Peter has. We’ll tell those two the day before, it we absolutely have to. James though, well, he might be actually be able to help us.”
* * *
“Oh my God! I can’t believe you are telling me this just now!” James was practically jumping up and down with excitement.
“We were rather hoping you would approve,” Kristen told him with a smile. “Are you sure it’s not too utterly tame for your taste?”
“Tame, are you kidding me? When the whole bloody school is-”
“Shh!” Kristen and Sirius hushed him quickly. “We have to keep this secret James,” Sirius scolded him. “At least until after the match to make sure we don’t get kicked off the team!”
“And then we get to brag about it, right? I mean, this is possibly the best prank that will ever be pulled within these walls!”
“I didn’t want to tell him!” Kristen reminded Sirius. “But no, let’s, it’s not fair if we don’t!”
“She could kick us off the team for next year James. Krissie and I were thinking about telling everyone at graduation.”
James’s mouth fell open in shock. “Graduation, are you mad? That’s ages away!” he shouted, apparently feeling very different towards the date since he’d spoken to Remus and Peter. “She can’t kick us off the team for next year, she wouldn’t dare! She cares way to much about quiditch, we have to call her bluff!”
“Call McGonagall’s bluff? Are you mad?” Sirius shouted tight back. “Only an idiot would do that!”
“And what are we? A bunch of idiots! Lily says so all the time!”
“Do you think I give a damn what flower child says?”
“Stop the testosterone!” Kristen halted them, seeing the flash in James’s eyes at the mention of Lily. It was one of the things Lily hated, that he was so protective of her and they weren’t even friends. “James, we can’t risk it!”
James sighed dramatically. “I still think I’m right. I mean, maybe if we did it now she would, but since you’re waiting until after the game…”
“We’ll see how it plays out,” Kristen compromised with him. “I’m not promising anything, but we’ll see.”
“Fine,” he grumbled, still eyeing Sirius with anger. “Come on, we need to get to potions.”
They rushed out of the broom closet they’d been hiding in for their conversation, earning several odd looks from the people passing in the hall.
“All right everyone, partner up, one boy and one girl to a cauldron,” Slughorn announced jovially. They all looked at each other oddly, they’d never been given those instructions before.
“Partners!” Sirius and Kristen announced quickly, afraid of ending up with a Slytherin.
“Oh Lily!” James called, scanning for her in the dungeon. Kristen caught sight of her as she nervously looked around. Lily’s eyes first fell on Severus, but he already had a partner. Next they roamed to Remus, easily her favorite boy of the bunch.
“Remus!” Lily screeched before James could get to her. “Partner!” She told him, begging for his agreement. Remus looked distinctly wary before he chanced a glance at James.
“I promise not to hit on her, flirt with her, compliment her, undress her with my eyes, and… what was the last one James?”
“Snog her,” James told Remus acidly, very put out now that Remus couldn’t even remember the code of conduct for any other boy around Lily.
“Right, or snog her,” Remus agreed, sitting with her in the front of the classroom. Lily turned only once to glare venomously at James.
“Shit,” James muttered, looking around to see who was left. Peter was already talking to Mary Jane quickly; they’d always been on fairly good terms, so that just left…
“Jamesy, come over here doll, we’re partners,” Gwen told him brightly in her absurd high pitched voice. James didn’t attempt to hide his groan at all as he bleakly walked to join her.
“Well everyone it’s my favorite day of the year!” Slughorn announced eagerly, his stomach jiggling in a rather grotesque manner. “Sex-ed!”
The dungeon was deathly silent. No one wanted to believe him. No, this couldn’t be true! “We’re going to be learning how to brew a contraceptive potion today and then I’ll give you the talk on the birds and the bees. So have at it, instructions and ingredients are on the board!”
There was an immediate clambering of people running for ingredients, simply wanting to get away from their partners. Kristen was one of them, and she refused to make eye contact with anyone as she tried to take as long as possible.
“It’s really not that bad,” Sirius whispered to her when she sat back down with everything they needed from the student cupboard.
“Not that bad? We’re learning to make a contraceptive potion!”
“Believe me, from what I’ve heard it’s much better than muggle products. Those things just really aren’t comfortable!”
“Shut up!” Kristen snapped at him, already embarrassed enough as it was. She didn’t need him telling her how horrible it was to go without the potion to make her day any better.
“So while your brewing this little potion I’m going to talk to you about some things. For muggle borns, you may have heard of you branch of STDs, AIDS and whatnot, well, wizards have their own as well. Dragon pox of your sensitive areas, sphinx fungus, an array of things actually, and while this potion does lower your chance of getting them, it does not, by any means, completely erase the chance. The only way to do that is through abstinence. But I’m not naïve; I know many students are too focused on their hormones to give much thought to that.”
Sirius actually laughed, he was one of the only ones able to not be completely red faced as he made this potion. “Kristen, lighten up, you’re going to have to learn to do this someday. Better now then when you end up pregnant!”
“It’s none of your business when I end up pregnant,” she shot back, refusing to meet his eyes. This was so embarrassing, why hadn’t she partnered with Remus, or even Peter, maybe James. Yes, James would definitely be better than partnering with Sirius.
“Now class, be warned that this potion is only guaranteed to work 98% of the time.”
“98%?” Sirius asked, abandoning his attempts at conversation with Kristen. “But that’s the same as muggle products.”
“That is correct Mr. Black, though the potion has the same percentage rate as muggle products, it is amazingly more convenient. It works for thirty six hours after you take it and a normal sized batch should last you a solid dozen times or so.” Slughorn answered him, apparently unconcerned with why Sirius would know percentage rates of anything.
“Well super,” Sirius groaned. “Now I’m always going to worry that I’m going to wake up the next morning and be a dad.”
“Maybe you should try abstinence,” Kristen suggested icily.
“Hell no, it was way too much fun.”
“Look, let’s just do this stupid potion and be done with it.”
“You want to know how to make it so James and Peter will win their bets without you having a baby?”
“Do you want me to go back to hating you, because I can Black, as easy as that!”
Sirius smirked at her. “You said you missed me last time,” he reminded her.
“Yeah, well, maybe I was lying just to make you feel better. Believe me, I won’t make that mistake again.”
“Just to make me feel better? Since when have you ever tried to make me feel better?”
“Well, at your father’s funeral I did try-”
“Oh, you’re going to bring that up again?” Sirius asked her with a grin, dropping a few lacewings into the simmering potion.
“You were rather horrid to me,” she reminded him, nowhere near smiling.
“And I said I’m sorry, in fifty different letters and for fifty two days straight,” he replied.
That brought out a smile. “Yes, that’s true. And then barely a month later I started hating you again. Hmm, you are really bad at staying on my good side.”
“Is anyone good at that?”
“Remus is, Peter too,” she said thoughtfully.
“Why do all the girls trust Remus and talk to him and everything?” Sirius moaned, picking up some knotgrass. “I mean, he doesn’t even have a girlfriend! It’s like they all trust him, but none of them like him, you know what I mean?”
“Yes, somehow I caught your drift through that poorly structured sentence. But you’re wrong, I know of at least three people that like Remus. Though the one that likes him the most he would never dare ask out.”
Sirius looked at her, waiting for her to tell him. “Who?” He asked impatiently.
“I can’t tell you that, it’s their information to give out,” Kristen told him sternly. “But trust me, they could never be together anyways.”
“Oh Merlin,” Sirius sighed; realizing who it was as he looked to the front of the classroom.
“Exactly,” Kristen agreed.
“Snape has a crush Remus?” Sirius nearly shouted. Several people stopped to turn and look at them and the dull murmur that had gradually filled the dungeon as nervousness eased away came to a halt.
“No, you dolt!” Kristen shouted back, knocking him on the side of the head and causing all the knotgrass to tumble into the potion.
“Oh great, now we’re going to get pregnant!” Sirius informed her with a bright smile as their potion bubbled threateningly from the excess knotgrass.
“That’s it! I refuse to be your partner any longer!” Kristen declared, hoping off her stool. “Professor Slughorn, I can no longer work with this...this thing!”
“Love has its ups and downs Miss St.Claire,” Slughorn told her kindly. Though she was abysmal in his class, she was still a Slug Club member and would be treated as so. “Compromise. I must ask that you stay partnered with Mr. Black, tiresome as he may be.” He winked heartily at Sirius before bumbling away, continuing on with his talk of wizarding STDs.
“Well if it isn’t Snivellus, then who?” Sirius asked her irritably, restarting their potion.
“Oh come on! When you looked to the front of the classroom I agreed with you. What girl is sitting up there that Remus could never possibly date?”
Sirius scanned the first row. “Narcissa?” He guessed. Kristen rolled her eyes and motioned for him to keep guessing. Suddenly, his eyes landed upon her, the girl that every marauder male was absolutely forbidden to even consider. “Oh,” Sirius breathed. “It’s Lily.”
Kristen nodded her head. “You are not allowed to tell anyone though! Especially not James, he would kill Remus just for being the object of her affections.”
“But…but James is our my best mate, I have to tell him!”
“No!” Kristen told him, looking fearful. “Lily would kill me! I shouldn’t have told you! Damn it, what am I going to do?”
Sirius sighed and looked over to wear James was quietly letting Gwen go on her talking spree. “Alright, I won’t say anything. But this makes us bad friends you know.”
“No it doesn’t. Lily’s business is none of his, no matter how much he’s convinced it is.”
“He needs to get over her.” Sirius concluded bluntly. “I know she’s pretty, but she’s got none of the Marauder sprit and she’s way too stuck up. Where’s the fun in that?”
“I know, they’ll never work together, not in a million years!” Kristen agreed, leaving Sirius to the potion making while Slughorn wasn’t watching. “James needs someone fun, someone like…like me, but I’m never going to date him again.”
“Someone like you?” Sirius smirked. “Well you think an awful lot of yourself, don’t you?”
“The only reason James and I didn’t work was because I knew him too well. I can never imagine him with a girl like Lily; just think of what he would turn into! I mean, I love Lily to death, but she’s such a stickler for the rules! If she doesn’t end up being Head Girl, I’ll eat my broom.”
“Just imagine James as Head Boy,” Sirius sniggered. “That would be horrible!”
The rest of the class passed in an easy truce, no more jokes about being pregnant, in exchange for no threat of being hated until the end of term. Kristen tried desperately to tune out Slughorn’s speech on ‘the miracle of life’ but his very descriptive words kept lurking into her brain, and she knew that it would surely lead to nightmares.
“Merlin, that was the absolute worst class of my life!” James moaned when they exited the dungeon in a rush. “I swear, I think Gwen expects me to use that potion with her or something.” He suddenly quieted, watching with a furrowed brow as Lily and Remus rushed ahead of them, their heads bowed in conversation.
“Hey, calm down,” Kristen told him, laying a hand on his arm. “All Remus is doing in talking to her.”
“I know,” James snapped at her uncharacteristically. Kristen glanced worriedly at Sirius.
“Mate, don’t you think it’s time to just…ease off a bit? You know, let the girl have some freedom,” Sirius tried to convince him.
“Why? Why won’t she just go out with me?” James asked, clearly irritated by the fact.
“Because she doesn’t like you,” Peter suggested.
Kristen and Sirius both glared at him, his answer only making things worse, even though he was right. “Well, maybe she’s just more of a…Remus type of girl. She’s bookish and polite and rule abiding and you’re…well…not.” Kristen continued.
“So I should let Remus have her, is that what you saying?” James asked them, his face hard and completely stoic.
“Maybe,” Sirius agreed. “It’s not really fair to her, is it mate?”
James snorted mockingly. “Since when have you ever played fair? I happen to remember that you once banned a marauder from ever asking out a girl, why can’t I do the same?”
“Face it mate, I had a hell of a lot more chance with her than you will ever have with Lily.”
“Hardly,” James laughed with venom. “How many times have you tried and failed to get her?”
Kristen was looking between them both, wondering just who they might be talking about. She was more than a bit upset that she hadn’t been let in on the secret; it must have been one of those stupid ‘guys only’ things.
“I’m not going to press you anymore about it, but just think about it, yeah? Maybe consider letting her have some breathing room, letting her date who she wants instead of threatening them all. The more you do it, the angrier she’s going to get.” Sirius told him.
James gave another look at Lily and Remus, who were far ahead of them at this point. Finally, he sighed. “Alright. But I’m not giving up entirely. She is going to give me a chance! Sooner or later, she will realize that we are perfect together, and will never want any other boy.”
Kristen and Sirius looked at each other and grimaced. The chances of that happening were one in a million.
A/N Well, I hope you adored it, or at least found it entertaining. I'm about to go and answer those many wonderful reviews you left me, it's definetly my highlight of the week. (If that sounds sarcastic I really don't mean it to, I promise.) And now, for your teasers. There are two this time around. Enjoy!
“I am not some bloody cow you buy at the fair!" - Kristen St.Claire
"We have a fan club?" - Peter Pettigrew
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