There was havoc in the Potter house. James, Sirius and Remus were running around chasing Fred and George, trying to hex them and prank them and Merlin knows what else, and leaving a path of destruction behind them.
“Sirius! Watch the vase!” Lily yelled as Sirius came sprinting into the kitchen, almost knocking over Lily’s favourite vase. She sighed, relaxing when he missed it, but the relief was only short lived. “JAMES POTTER! I DO NOT WANT ANY ANIMALS IN MY HOUSE, EVEN IF THEY ARE ANIMAGUS!”
She smiled when her husband transformed back into his human self, giving her an unhappy look before he ran off after George who had just jinxed Sirius into talking in an extremely high pitched voice, yelling. “Oi! Come back here you cheeky bugger! No one turns a Marauder into a little girl and gets away with it!”
“Go Prongs! Get him!” Sirius squeaked in his girly voice.
Lily shook her head in exasperation and walked back into the living room, making sure to put up a shield charm at the door as she went. She grinned wryly at Hermione’s shocked look as she sat down. “This is almost a daily occurrence.” She said.
“Oh yeah.” Nikki, who was sitting next to Hermione replied, “It started happening occasionally after Harry defeated Voldemort because the three Marauders were finally back together. But after George arrived and joined forces with Fred, it got a lot worse.”
Lily sighed, “If I didn’t love them so much I would have to kill them.”
“Me too.” Tonks laughed from beside her.
Hermione giggled. “I’m just surprised that they can keep coming up with different pranks and spells.”
“Well, they may not act like it a lot of the time, but James and Sirius are actually really quite smart.” Lily said.
Hermione nodded in understanding. “It’s the same with the Weasleys. Fred and George only got 6 OWL’s together but they can come up with all sorts of candy and fireworks and pranks. It never ceases to amaze me.”
Nikki laughed. “I think it is a male thing.”
“Well that’s really the same with Ron as well.” Hermione continued, “He can be really creative and smart when he puts his mind to it, he just has to get past the obstacles first.” She smiled, “At school, he just didn’t have the self confidence to even try.”
“Sure, Lily. You didn’t see him when he was younger.” Tonks put in. “He didn’t have the confidence to do a lot of things. Like really think, or…ask Hermione out!”
They all laughed, “Yes it did take him a while to show that he cared for me more then a friend.” Hermione admitted, “But I think one of the reasons was because he was best friends with Harry. Harry was always doing great things and getting all the attention.”
“What was the thing he was least confident at then?” Nikki asked, “More then schoolwork, anyway?”
Hermione thought for a bit before saying, “I think Quidditch was one of the main things. When he first started as keeper in sixth year, he was so nervous every game, he didn’t play to his full potential. Harry was so desperate to have Ron play well, that he even pretended to give him some Felix Felicis so that he felt lucky and could play well.”
Lily laughed, “Did it work?”
“Yeah it worked.” Hermione giggled, “When Harry told him that he actually hadn’t put any potion in Ron’s drink, I think that’s when Ron realised he could actually do it.”
“Well, he doesn’t seem to be under confident now.” Lily said.
Hermione smiled, “No. Now he just lets people work him up too easily.”
Just then they heard the front door bang open and the said person walked in, accompanied by Mr and Mrs Weasley. They stopped in the door way, looking around warily, obviously watching for an incoming prank, before quickly crossing to the living room.
Hermione, Nikki, Lily and Tonks listened to Ron talking to his parents as they approached, “…you don’t really know him that well! Of course he was surprised to see you.”
“But I do know him.” Molly said indignantly, “You were friends with him all through school, and his grandmother is a very nice lady—”
“Yes, but you don’t know him well enough to turn up at his house! He was just expecting me! If you really knew him, you would have realised that Neville isn’t really into being the centre of attention, like the way you acted!”
Hermione threw a look at Lily and Tonks across from her that said, “My point exactly.” They smiled.
When he reached the doorway, Ron attempted to walk in, but he was bounced back. “Hey!” he yelled, waving to the four women in the room. “Can you drop the shield, please?”
“Oh! Sorry.” Lily said, waving her wand and the three Weasleys could walk in and sit down, before putting it back up again.
“So how is Neville?” Hermione asked as he husband sat down heavily next to her.
“Well, you know, as good as can be expected.” Ron replied, “I mean he just arrived yesterday, and his wife hasn’t died yet but he is happy to be with his parents. He finally has a chance to get to know them properly.” They all nodded, and Lily couldn’t help but feel a little bit jealous of Alice and Frank, who could talk to their boy.
“But they weren’t there when I arrived and I think he was happy to see some other people,” Ron continued, “until Mum turned up and embarrassed him to no end.”
“I was just being friendly.” Mrs Weasley retorted.
“Molly, let it go.” Arthur advised, and she huffed unhappily. Then wild, loud cheering could be heard through the shield.
They all looked towards the noise as Lily muttered, “I should have made it sound proof as well as idiot proof.”
The Marauders suddenly appeared sliding down the stair rail looked unhappy. Sirius was looking stressed and kept touching his hair as the three of them walked towards the others sitting down, only to be thrown back by the shield.
“Lilyyyy!” wailed James, “You put up a shield again? We’re not that bad!”
“I beg to differ!” she yelled back. He pouted unhappily.
“Lils, please let us in.” Remus said in a defeated voice, “It’s over.”
“Fine.” Lily sighed and waved the shield charm away.
“Thank you, my dearest flower.” James sang as he came and sat next to her, and tried to give her a hug.
“Ew James! You’re all gross. Go take a shower!”
“Awww but that means getting up again! Oh, I know!” James pulled out his wand and waved it all over himself, muttering quietly. “There! All clean.”
“You might be clean, James but I am not giving you a hug just yet. I’m still mad you were running though my house, destroying it, again! Next time, you go to Nikki and Sirius’s place.”
“Okay,” James grumbled and Nikki glared at her best friend in annoyance.
“So, who won?” Mr Weasley asked.
“Fred and George.” Remus muttered, shooting an irritated look at his fellow Marauder, “Sirius gave in and forfeited us!”
“They were playing dirty! I was not going to dignify them with a challenge when they won’t even do it properly! You can’t purposely try to kill someone, it’s against the rules!” Sirius cried plopping down on the floor in front of Nikki and leaning on her legs.
“Padfoot, your hair caught on fire from one of their fireworks!” James said, “That is not purposely trying to kill you.”
“It is too! You know that my hair is important to me, Prongs. It is the source of my good-lookingness.”
Remus rolled his eyes, “It obviously also covers the big hole in your head where your brain should be. Good-lookingness isn’t a word, Sirius.”
“So you can’t just make up words Padfoot!”
Remus struggled to find a proper answer, “You just can’t!”
“STOP!” James shouted, “Moony, don’t stoop to his level, you’ll never be able to bend that far down.”
Everyone laughed as Sirius said, “Hey! That’s not very nice.” James just smirked at him and Nikki laughed and stroked his hair. Then Fred and George strolled in, hands in their pockets, huge grins on their faces.
“Hello, hello. Isn’t it a lovely day?” George said.
Hermione opened her mouth to answer but Sirius cut her off, “DON’T answer, Hermione! I thought that you were smart enough to realise that it is some kind of conspiracy.”
Fred and George rolled their eyes, while Hermione was offended, “Sirius, it’s not a conspiracy, it was a simple question.” He ignored her and continued to glare at the twins.
“We’re sorry that your hair caught on fire Sirius, but it wasn’t our fault.” Fred said, “You should know not to stand too close to a firework.”
“Especially one of ours.” George put in.
Sirius jumped up. “Rematch. Kitchen. Now. C’mon Prongs, Moony.”
James groaned, “Not now Sirius, I’m too tired.”
“Yeah, I don’t think that is such a good time Pad.” Remus said.
“Why not? Now is a perfect time. No time like the present.”
“No, Sirius. We can do it tomorrow, at your place. If we had a rematch now, and here Lily would kill us, or at least slap us, and you don’t want that now, do you?” James said.
Sirius gulped loudly and looked at Lily who was staring at him menacingly and nodding. “Fine, then.” He gave in. “But tomorrow! My place, 10 o’clock.” He stared at Fred and George with narrowed eyes. “Be there or be rectangle!”
Ron and Hermione frowned at the others, but they shook their heads.
“Just ignore him, you guys.” Remus advised quietly, “We usually do.”
“Moony’s right.” James laughed, looking at Hermione and Ron “You two have only been here for less then a month, you aren’t really used to Sirius like this.”
“But I’m always like this!”
Everyone laughed as James and Sirius continued bickering like little children. Ron and Hermione looked on with interest. Having only arrived less then a month ago about two weeks apart, they had both found a huge crowd out to greet them. Apparently, everyone in Above knew how they were Harry Potters best friends and they had come out to shake their hands, thank them, ask how Harry was etcetera… plus they still weren’t used to sitting across from Lily and James Potter.
Lily and James had been extraordinarily happy to see their son’s best friends and had bombarded them with questions. Ron and Hermione were also amazed to finally meet Harry’s parents, and the first two weeks after their arrival was spent swapping stories and telling Lily and James everything they could think of about Harry. Even now, sitting with them and hearing James and Sirius fight so casually and see the real Marauders in action. It was all rather overwhelming.
“STOP!” Lily yelled to James and Sirius both after a while of them bickering. “Stop fighting like four year olds or I will come over there and hit you both, understand?”
They both fell quiet instantly, looking rather scared. She smiled in satisfaction and then looked up and winked at Mrs Weasley, who was trying to hide a smile.
Hermione leaned over Ron to whisper to Nikki, “Why do they always seem so scared when Lily threatens to hit them?”
She laughed quietly, “Well, a long while ago, I think it was the night Voldemort fell, Sirius was being rather stupid or more so then usual, and sort of hitting on Lily, so she slapped him, really hard. Not to mention the fact that he was my boyfriend, and he was flirting with my best friend, so I was obligated to slap him too. He had two red hand marks on his cheeks for two days afterwards. But I think Lily’s slap was worse.” They all looked over at Lily who was now talking quietly with Molly and Arthur. “She may seem small, but don’t let that fool you. She has a huge temper and massive strength to match.”
“Okay.” Ron chuckled, “I’ll just be sure to stay on her good side then.”
They looked over at her again to see Lily laugh and nod at James before she got to her feet to get some tea for her and Remus. Nikki grinned at Ron, “That’s usually the best. Most of us manage it fairly easily. She is such a sweetheart most of the time, it’s just when people, namely Sirius, purposely annoy her, that’s when it is best to get out of range.”
“Well, I think it’s time to go to bed!” Molly announced, getting up and pulling her husband to his feet. “Fred, George, Ron, you as well. George, Angelina will be wondering where you are.”
“Nah, she won’t. I said that I was coming to the Potters to prank the Marauders and she said that she was going to see Katie and Alicia and have a girls’ night. She probably won’t be home yet.”
“Let’s just hope she’s not completely drunk and giving some random a lap dance, eh?” Sirius snickered, wiggling his eyebrows.
George didn’t crack a smile as he stood up and walked slowly towards Sirius. “Don’t make me light another firework, Sirius.” He said quietly, “This time, I will make sure it doesn’t only set fire to your hair.” Sirius gulped and nodded.
Then George grinned and sat back down. “Besides, Ange would never do that. She did marry me after all.” He smirked, “Anyway, it’s not like that would be interesting for her, the amount of times she does it at home.”
Fred laughed and gave his twin a high-five. Ron and Remus grinned before seeing the glares on their wives faces. Sirius laughed the loudest and ruffled Georges hair saying, “That’s the way Georgie-boy! If you weren’t an enemy of the Marauders, I would induct you right here.” But upon seeing Nikki’s expression, he sat down immediately.
But Mrs Weasley’s voice overrode everyone else’s. “GEORGE WEASLEY! How dare you say that about Angelina. Your poor wife is probably sitting at home, waiting for you, so you get home now and—”
The noise that cut off Molly was not something they had heard in a while, yet it was entirely familiar. Everyone slowly raised their eyes to the screen above their heads, and immediately there was screaming.
Hermione shrieked in shock, as did Tonks, her hands flying to her mouth. Lily, who was just walking in with a cup of tea for her and for Remus, looked up and dropped the cups, not that anyone noticed. Sirius, and Fred and George all jumped to their feet.
Then there was silence. “Well what the bloody hell are you waiting for?!” Fred yelled.
Everyone jumped up and followed him to the door, leaving the screen behind them with a name shining in blinding white. HARRY POTTER.