Five Minutes

Chapter 3

Disclaimer; I don't own the wizarding world of Harry Potter or any of the characters in it. I wish I did. But I don't.

Hello reader!

Here's chapter three! This is the last chapter I'll post at the minute but I will be posting more, (date at the bottom), because it's worth it for at least just one person to read. Knowing someones read and liked what I've done so far will make my day!

Hope you enjoy it!

Chapter Three

The next day was the last of the exams. In the morning, the whole of the fifth year had taken their potions exam and in the afternoon there was the divination exam for those who had chosen to take that subject. James Potter and Sirius Black were two of these people.

'Why did we take divination?' Sirius asked James as they sat down to eat lunch in the great hall.

'Well I didn't want to you forced me!' James said grumpily. He hated divination.

'Why?'

'If I remember correctly, you were at that time going out with a Miss Jessica Cartwright from Hufflepuff.' Remus said knowledgably sitting down next to James with Peter sitting on his other side.

'Oh yeah!' Sirius said with a nostalgic look, 'I forgot about her.'

'I know!' Remus said through slightly gritted teeth. 'I had to break up with her for you because you had already gone off with Lauren!'

'But she was my first love!' Sirius said clutching his heart dramatically.

'Of that day.' Remus muttered under his breath.

'Whatever!' Sirius said waving the conversation away with his hand. 'Have we got all the supplies for tonight?' he asked his fellow marauders.

'Almost!' Peter piped up, 'Me and Moony were going to go and get the rest when you and Prongs are in your exam.'

'Excellent!' Sirius said smiling at Peter who felt elated and what he considered praise. 'What's left to get?' Sirius continued.

'The second case of butterbeer and the last of the jelly.' Remus recalled, 'They are in the kitchen. Well the jelly is. The butterbeer is in the passage.'

'Awesome!' Sirius said, 'This is going to rock! Right Prongs? Prongs?' he shook his best mate who seemed to be in some sort of a trance.

'Huh?' James said groggily as if he had just woken up from a deep sleep.

'The party will rock!' Sirius said excitedly.

'Yeah, yeah it will.' James said with an inward sigh.

He had just been thinking about a certain red headed girl. Yesterday he had actually had a conversation with her that had miraculously not ended with her calling him all the names under the sun even though it had begun that way. He was delighted. That small civil conversation they had had, had been the highlight of his week. If only he could find a way to keep that energy. There had to be a way. He was tired of her rejecting him and breaking his heart. It had done him no good over the past five years and had caused him nothing but pain. She had cursed him with her wand and with her words, telling him to grow up every time he tried to ask her out. He kept replaying the moments they had shared together the previous day and had started to see a little bit of hope. Maybe, there was a chance for him yet. He just had to figure out a way…

'OI!' Sirius said clicking his fingers in front of James glazed over eyes. James snapped out of his trance once again and blinked rapidly at Sirius who was looking at him with an exasperated expression. 'You were thinking about her again weren't you?' he said with a bored tone in his voice.

'So what if I was?' James shrugged and began to eat a sandwich, 'It's not against the law is it?'

'No but…' Sirius paused, 'it's just you could have any girl in this school. Merlin knows you've had enough offers but you just reject them all! I mean, don't get me wrong I love offering a shoulder to cry on to the girls that you reject but… it's not… it's…' Sirius looked to Remus for a bit of help.

'It's not healthy.' Remus completed. James snapped a look at him before turning back to look at Sirius who had continued.

'You spend all your efforts on asking Evans out and you're always so upset when she shoots you down. You've got to get over her mate. In case you haven't got the picture by now, she doesn't want you.'

James looked at Sirius as if he had been stabbed in the back. He looked around at his other two friends to see them looking down at their food not daring to make eye contact with him. So this was how they all felt. He knew it was just because they didn't want to see him hurt again and in their eyes they were only trying to help, but through James eyes, you could see a whole other picture.

'Thanks guys, but…' James started hearing a collective sigh, 'It doesn't really make a difference if you think I'm being stupid or whatever. The fact of the matter is I don't want anyone else. I just want her.' he said before putting down his sandwich and walking away from the table.

'Well that could have gone a lot better.' Sirius muttered to Remus who nodded in agreement. 'Who knew interventions were this hard?'

For the rest of the day, James hardly spoke to his friends and everyone in the school could feel the tension even if it was hardly noticeable. Sirius Black was trying to get James to talk to him again during the line-up for their divination exam but James had just made up the excuse that he was trying to do some last minute studying.

'Without your book?' Sirius asked him with his arms folded. He hated it when he and James weren't talking. He had only tried to help his friend move on but he was starting to think that an intervention wasn't really the right way to go.

'I'm just going over things in my head.' James said before walking to the back of the line to join all the P surnames.

Sirius looked over to his friend trying to think of ways to help him move on. If you knew Sirius, it was difficult for him to think for too long.

James, at the back of the line, however, was trying to find a way to win Lily Evan's heart. He believed the key to his problem was in everything she had ever said to him so he stood there and ran through it all. The rejections, the insults, the curses, everything.

Time flew by and before James knew it, it was his turn to go into the exam. He walked into the classroom and looked around seeing a giant teapot and some ugly yellow cups.

Great,he thought to himself, reading tea leaves!

He grumpily walked over to the chair opposite his divination teacher and examiner, Professor Linkam, and sat down.

'Mr Potter!' She said jollily giving him a small smile, 'You may have gathered we are reading tea leaves for this exam. I am just going to pour myself a cup and drink it and then I would like you to carry out the appropriate method for reading tea leaves please.'

James nodded and sat back in his chair watching her. She poured herself half a cup of tea into the hideous yellow mug and drank it before setting it down on the table in front of James.

'Proceed.' she said to James taking out some parchment and a quill to takes notes with during his examination.

James picked up the mug and swilled the dregs around the giant cup before draining it. He then looked at the bottom of the cup to see a ladder and a sun. He began to think back to his divination book. He had only flicked through it once and hadn't opened it again since the beginning of third year. He and Sirius always 'forgot' their books and spent the lessons making up crazy predictions instead. He had however remembered hearing Emmeline Vance, the class's top student, talking about a ladder in her tea leaves and tried to remember what she had said.

'Err…'James began causing Professor Linkam to look up expectantly, 'I see a ladder.' he began, still trying to remember Emmeline's words. What else had been happening in that class? He and Sirius were predicting their own deaths. That was all he remembered. Think James think! he yelled internally to himself, you know this. Something about climbing…THAT'S IT! He thought happily.

'The ladder means you are going to achieve success.' James said to a nodding Linkam, 'And I also see a sun. This means your future is bright and you will be very happy!' James said making it up. It had to be close though. What else could a sun mean?

He put down the cup and looked across the table to Professor Linkam who had taken the cup and was now examining it herself. She glanced up and smiled at James. 'You may go.' she told him and without hesitation, James got up and walked straight out of the door to find Sirius and Remus waiting for him.

'How'd it go?' Remus asked breaking the ice.

'Good I think.' James replied if a little stiffly before walking away towards the Gryffindor common room. It wasn't long before Remus and Sirius had caught up with him and were walking either side of him.

'We're sorry mate.' Sirius said with his head down.

'Yeah. We didn't mean for it to come out like that it's just…'

'We don't want you to be hurt anymore!' Sirius cried dramatically causing the trio to laugh at everyone who had stopped in shock.

'I get that.' James said honestly, 'But as my friends I would really like it if you just supported my decision instead of trying to stop me. No matter what you think or what she thinks, I won't stop trying.'

'All right.' Remus said causing James to look at him in surprise. 'But maybe you should try a different way of trying to get her to go out with you. I mean every time you ask her she just tells you to grow up and…'

'That's it!' James yelled triumphantly, 'Thanks Remus! I know what I have to do!' He said before almost sprinting to the Gryffindor common room leaving two very confused boys behind him in his wake.

Lily Evans was packing her trunk ready to leave in two days. She liked to be prepared and have everything organised and ready before hand. It was just who she was. To some people it may have seemed stupid but to her it was necessary. This way she could enjoy her last few days without worrying about the fact that she hadn't packed. She was in the middle of folding one of her school skirts when one of her friends and dorm mates walked into the dorm room.

'How was your exam?' Lily asked her whilst continuing to pack.

'Eh.' Hestia shrugged before beginning to pack her own suitcase. 'I had dumb tea leaves to read. The signs were success and happiness.'

'So you'll have those in your future then?'

'Not me. Professor Linkam.' Hestia said as if it was obvious.

'Oh, sorry. I'm sure you'll be successful and happy to though!' Lily said reassuringly to her best friend.

'Yes I am sure I will!' Hestia replied confidently.

Lily gave a small giggle and continued to pack. 'What are you doing this summer then?' she asked curiously.

'Are you kidding? We're going shopping!' Hestia said shocked, 'We always go shopping!'

'How could I forget?' Lily laughed. They never went shopping. They always planned too but their summer holiday plans never seemed to coincide.

They both continued to talk, laugh and pack. After a few minutes, Mary McDonald waltz into the room in a bit of a frenzy.

'What are you wearing?' she asked her dorm mates frantically before pulling out every item of clothing she had.

'For what?' the two girls asked in unison, looking at Mary as if she had gone mad.

'The marauders party?'

It was dinner time and there was a buzz of excitement over at the Gryffindor table. Everyone was excited about the 'secret' party the marauders had decided to throw. It was the main conversation starter. Over at the Slytherin table however, Severus was completely the opposite. He had no excitement in his life anymore. Lily Evans was the one thing about his life that he actually liked. He hated his father, and his mother was no better. He had nothing left in his opinion. Not now she'd gone.

'Why so glum?' Mulciber, a fellow Slytherin asked him moodily. 'Did you get a letter?'

'A letter?' Snape asked interested. 'What letter?'

'It's in the dorm.' Avery replied in a bored voice, 'I'm going to do it. There's no higher honour than being asked personally.'

Snape looked at him confused before rising from the table and leaving the great hall. Before he walked out of the doors however, he turned and looked back towards the Gryffindor table where he spotted a wave of shiny red hair. He looked at Lily wistfully, wanting nothing more than to turn back time and stop himself from calling her that terrible name. There had to be a way of undoing this. There just had to be.

He turned away with a defeated sigh and walked slowly towards the Slytherin common room. When he reached the entrance he said the password and entered the main room of Slytherin's dungeon. He walked up the staircase to his dorm room where he saw the letter Avery had been talking about, lying on his pillow. He picked it up with trembling hands and read his name on the envelope. He turned it over and saw the seal; a skull with a snake protruding from the mouth. This could only mean one thing. He was being recruited.

He tore the letter open and read it taking in every word;

Severus Snape,

I require you to join my ranks. You will be a great addition to my cause. If you refuse, I cannot be responsible for your fate.

Lord Voldemort.

Severus gulped and began to write his response.

That night, the marauders threw one of their famous parties. There was a tonne of jelly, which was shaped like a lion, and butterbeer. Everyone was having a great time. They all went in turn to congratulate and thank the marauders for another awesome party.

All four of them were sat on the sofas around the fireplace in the common room. They were laughing and chatting, drinking butterbeer, eating jelly and, in Sirius' case, snogging some girl.

'So what are we all doing this summer?' Remus asked his friends.

'I'm going on holiday with my mum.' Peter grumbled miserably picking at his cake.

'Ah, you'll be fine!' James said reassuringly, 'Where you going?'

'Bulgaria.' Peter muttered unhappily. The other three laughed, (Sirius having kicked the girl to the curb at a start of a conversation with his friends as they were more important), and James and Remus told him not to worry. Sirius told him to remember his souvenir causing Remus and James to look at him disapprovingly.

'What about you Prongs?' Remus asked curiously looking towards where James was lounging on the sofa.

'Same as last year mate. One day out with mum and dad to the Quidditch match then back home to wait until Hogwarts starts again. Since Voldy-Mouldy started gathering followers, Mum and Dad have been working non-stop so I'm stuck with Linda.' Linda was the Potter's house elf and was very protective of her youngest master. When he wasn't at Hogwarts she would secretly follow him everywhere to ensure he was safe.

'What about you Moony?' Peter asked.

'Nothing much. I'll be in the basement for the most part.' he grumbled under his breath so that only his friends could hear.

'That's tough Moony.' James said patting him on his back, 'You can come to mine if you want? I could use the company…' James suggested before trailing off at the look on Remus' face.

'Thanks, but, you can't handle me on your own. You'll need him with you.' he said jerking his thumb towards Sirius, not noticing the expression on Peter's face at being left out.

'That could probably be arranged!' Sirius said mischievously but not letting on what his intentions for the summer were. All he did was wiggle his eyebrows and wink at James who rolled his eyes at is best friend's antics. He would be at James' place all summer anyway. The previous summer he had practically moved in.

Suddenly, there was a loud bang and James, Remus and Sirius turned to see Peter with soot over is nose and his mousy hair standing on end. He coughed slightly with a shocked look on his round face.

James, Remus and Sirius began to laugh at Peter's accident and it was a while before they could stop laughing enough for Remus to scourigify Peter clean.

Across the room Lily Evans was watching the marauders with a disgusted expression. She couldn't believe that they would just sit laughing whilst their friend was covered in soot. Not only were they bullies to anyone who got in their way but they also treated their own friend like dirt too. Although Lily had never understood why Peter was part of their group, she had never thought that they would befriend him just for a laugh, but from where she was standing, that's exactly what they seemed to have done. Whatever glimmer of decency she saw in James Potter yesterday had been wiped away from what she had just seen.

She looked at her watch and saw that it had gone midnight. She put down her butterbeer and walked over to the girl's staircase before walking up and going to bed. She had only been there under protest anyway. She had made a deal with Hestia to stick it out till twelve and now that was done, she was going to bed.

Just as Lily had entered her dorm room, McGonagall walked through the common room portrait hole and instantly silenced the tower. She looked over to the marauders who all stood up quickly.

'Well?' She asked them expectantly with her hands on her hips.

'Ok…' James sighed at her, before addressing the common room, 'BED TIME CHILDREN!' he yelled to the students who instantly groaned. But, as it was James Potter who had told them too, they all made their way up to their dorm rooms and went to bed.

After about five minutes, the entire room had cleared and the only ones who were left were the Marauders and McGonagall. She looked at them again tapping her foot and waiting for an explanation.

'Well?' she asked again looking at them with questioning raised eyebrows.

'Err…' the boys said collectively.

'We saved you a butterbeer?' Sirius said handing her a bottle.

She took it and almost split a smile before returning back to her serious expression. 'Clean up!' she said before turning around. With a swish of her tartan dressing gown, she left the Gryffindor tower and the four boys in the mess their party had created.

'Better get started then!' Peter squeaked grabbing a bag to put rubbish in.

James, Sirius and Remus looked at him as if he had gone out of his mind. 'What?' Peter asked them in a clueless fashion.

'We are wizards Wormy!' James said and with a flick of his wand the common room was now neat and tidy. 'Let's go to bed.' he yawned before walking up the spiral staircase. The other three followed suit and climbed up after him to the fifth year dormitory.

Once upstairs, they all changed for bed. When they had, Sirius remembered something. 'We haven't planned our end of year surprise guys!'

There were murmurs of 'oh yeah!', 'I forgot', and 'let's get to it' whilst they all clambered onto James bed with all thoughts of sleep forgotten.

The next day flew by and before the school knew it, it was the last day of the school year. Some students spent their days packing and taking one last look around the grounds. Some spent their time with friends who they wouldn't see for the whole of the summer. Some said goodbye to girlfriends and boyfriends. One person however was sitting on a flight of steps trying to convince himself he had made the right decision.

The day before last, Severus Snape had received a letter from the man every witch, wizard and magical creature had come to fear. For the past six years, Lord Voldemort had been gathering followers and more power. His cause started out small and no-one took any particular interest in it. They didn't view him as a threat. For the past year however, most people had begun to fear the man more than ever before. He was no longer a meaningless face but a source of freight. For the past year, the Daily Prophet had been printing more stories, at least one every couple of months, about his antics and his follower's antics. How they were torturing muggles, killing muggleborns and causing who they viewed as blood-traitors to disappear. He was now a cause for concern in the wizarding world who were secretly cursing themselves for not fighting back sooner.

Voldemort had sent letters to various Slytherin's in fifth year most of which were all too enthusiastic to join up. Severus Snape however had thought long and hard about his choices before making his decision. All his fellow Slytherin's were already death eaters, aspiring to be one, or just supporting the cause. One of the boys he shared a dorm with, Avery, had been thrilled to get his letter. He had immediately written a response accepting Lord Voldemort's offer, and after an hour or so thinking about it, so had Severus.

The minute he had sent his reply, he had felt a sense of elation and purpose. He had found something to fill the void that his broken friendship with Lily Evans had left. But the next day he had realised that nothing could fill that gap. Nothing could ever replace what he had had with Lily. He soon became ashamed of his decision and wished he could take it back. The thing he had done to put his mind off Lily had only caused him to think about her more and the disapproval she would have over his decision. The only thing he could think of to help ease his guilt was the fact that he could try and keep her safe from Voldemort's clutches. He could direct his attention away from Lily and try to keep her alive from within. It wasn't much, but it was all he had left.

This is the conclusion Severus Snape had come to whilst sitting on one of the many staircases in Hogwarts. He got up and entered the great hall where all the students of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry were now gathering for their final meal. The next day they would get up in the morning and head straight to the Hogwarts Express meaning that this was the last time the whole school would be together before the start of the summer holidays.

When entering the great hall he immediately looked up to see the Gryffindor colours hanging from the enchanted ceiling. This meant that they had won the House Cup again instead of the Slytherin's. Severus rolled his eyes in what could only be described as an angry expression before walking over to the Slytherin table. He sat down just in time to hear Avery complaining to Mulciber about the House Cup and who it was being awarded to.

'Damn Gryffindor's! Mudbloods and blood traitors the lot of them!' he spat disgustedly giving the table in question a dirty look. 'Always win the Cup! It's because Dumbledore was a Gryffindor, not because they deserve it!'

Snape nodded his head solemnly in agreement but quickly stopped when his attention was caught by a swish of red hair. He quickly blocked out Avery's conversation with their fellow Slytherin, Nott, and began to watch Lily walk over to her seat on the Gryffindor table facing away from him.

As Lily sat down she could feel a gaze penetrating her back. She quickly turned around and saw Severus looking at her hungrily. She rolled her eyes and turned back to her fellow Gryffindor's who were surrounding her. She turned to listen into her dorm mate's conversation. Mary Macdonald, Alice Prewett and Emmeline Vance were discussing the types of dragons that were native to Romania as Emmeline was going to be going there this summer on holiday with her family. The other person joining in this conversation was Hestia Jones who was also a fifth year Gryffindor and Lily's best friend.

'The Chinese Fireball dragon isn't really native to Romania though is it?' Mary asked before flashing Lily a small but friendly smile.

'No but they do have them there!' Alice Prewett, the last girl in the Gryffindor dorm was saying to Emmeline in reassurance who was nodding her head.

'They also have the Swedish Short Snout over their too.' Lily said casually, 'Maybe you'll see one of them?'

'Maybe…' Hestia said thoughtfully agreeing with Lily. She then sighed sadly, 'I can't believe I won't see you till next year!' she said hugging Lily tightly, completely turning off topic and talking solely to her best friend.

'Technically just later this year. Err… Hestia?'

'Yes?' Hestia replied still hugging Lily tightly.

'Can I have a bit of air please? I'm kinda suffocating over here!' Lily said breathily before Hestia finally let go of her apologising.

'So got anything big planned this summer?' Lily asked Mary politely whilst rubbing her shoulder.

'Not really.' Mary replied, 'Just going to see the family!'

'Yeah same here!' Alice said smiling sadly, 'No big plans. Boredom is a great feature of my upcoming holiday. We fit together like two peas in a pod!'

'Well we could always meet up if you'd like?' Lily suggested to her two dorm mates. She wasn't that close with Alice or Mary but they was still her friends and if they wanted too they could meet up with her and Hestia. That is if they actually arranged it properly this year instead of just talking about it. It might be nice to do something this summer anyway. After all, she had no-one at home anymore after what had happened with Severus.

'Yeah sure!' Alice replied excitedly.

'I can't, sorry.' Mary said as she got up, 'Thanks for the invitation though!' Mary smiled at Lily before leaving. Lily didn't mind. They really weren't that close. They never hung out with each other. It was usually just her and Hestia with Alice and Emmeline joining them occasionally. Two sets of best friends who sometimes made a group.

When Mary had left, Alice immediately asked, 'What should we do?' causing Hestia to reply 'Shop!' immediately.

Lily rolled her eyes. 'You always want shop Hestia!'

'And what's wrong with that! It's a tradition!' Hestia exclaimed.

'Well I do need some new school robes and stuff…'

'Not for school supplies!' Hestia said exasperatedly, 'For clothes and perfumes and stuff! We can all meet in Diagon Alley.' she turned to Alice, 'Last year I went round muggle London and bought some awesome muggle clothes!' she turned back to Lily, 'We can do that right Lily? You can show us some of the best spots'

'Yeah sure!' Lily replied. That would be fun. Not that she knew where the best spots were.

'That sounds nice!' Emmeline said quietly.

'Ohh! You can help us make plans!' Alice said happily. Soon all four girls were in deep conversation about what shops they would like to visit and what clothes they would like to buy.

'Pft! Shopping!' Sirius said catching a few words from the girls' conversation as he and the marauders walked past, 'Never will understand a girls fascination with shopping!' he went on to say as they all sat down a little way a way from Lily and her friends.

'Me either mate!' Remus said clapping him on the back before turning to James, 'You ready?' he asked.

'Absolutely!' James replied looking up to the high table where all the professors were sat. Dumbledore began to rise and all of the marauders looked at each other with a slight nod before discreetly taking out their wands.

The hall fell silent as Dumbledore began to address the students. 'Another year has ended at Hogwarts. I hope you have all learnt something this year. Don't worry though; you have the whole summer to forget what that was!' he said to a few appreciative chuckles. He had his arms open in a welcoming fashion and began to speak once more.

'Before we begin our end of year feast I would like to award the House cup. Now unfortunately, the House point system was altered a few days ago by an anonymous source.' he said smiling at the marauders, who glanced at Sirius, who shrugged innocently.

'What?' he said earning a few laughs from around him.

'Fortunately,' Dumbledore continued, 'we have been able to rectify the problem and are able to give you the correct results. In fourth place with 360 points, was Hufflepuff!' he said smiling towards the Hufflepuff table who were clapping slightly.

'In third place, with 385 points, was Slytherin.' There was a small spattering of applause echoing around the hall. The Slytherin's didn't bother to join in. They hated to lose.

'And finally, as you may have guessed from out tasteful decorations, Gryffindor has won the House Cup with 420 points leaving Ravenclaw in second place with only 415 points. As you can tell, this year, it was very close.' The hall burst into applause for Gryffindor's victory. Only the Slytherin's had a problem with them winning the cup.

During this applause, the marauders looked at each other and nodded their heads before simultaneously pointing their wands up to the enchanted ceiling. Suddenly there was a loud crack above and everyone stopped clapping. Instead, they looked up to the ceiling expectantly. No more than five seconds later, it began to rain. But this wasn't normal rain. No. This was a very sweet rain. Everybody soon realised what was happening and jumped up to grab what was falling from the sky. Every individual grabbed something different for the marauders had enchanted the ceiling to rain everyone's favourite type of sweet. Some received chocolate frogs and some liquorice wands. The strangest sweet to rain down in the hall was on Dumbledore's plate. He chuckled and everyone stopped their jumping and excitement to see what he would say to the marauders.

'Lemon drops.' he said simply, 'How did you know?' he popped one in his mouth and smiled at the marauders. 'You do realise that traditionally, desert comes after the meal?'

'What can we say?' Sirius said to Dumbledore shrugging his shoulders, 'We've never been ones for tradition!'

'And on that note,' Dumbledore smiled, 'enjoy!'

Magically, on every table, amidst the many sweets, a luxurious meal appeared with everything you could ever want to eat on it. The students lurched forwards and filled their plates with all the food they could seize. The hall became loud with the excited chatter about the marauders end of year surprise.

'I must say I think we've out done ourselves!' Remus said happily, tearing into a leg of chicken.

'This just means we will have to get better next year then doesn't it!' Sirius said stuffing his mouth with some mashed potato and allowing the world to see.

'Ugh, shut your mouth Sirius, that's disgusting!' Remus groaned causing James to laugh. 'You wouldn't be laughing if you had to face that!' Remus said seriously to James.

'Probably not but at the minute this is very funny!' James laughed happily.

Remus rolled his eyes and carried on eating his leg of chicken.

When the whole hall had finished eating their meals and stuffing their pockets with the sweets that still lay on the table, Dumbledore stood up once again.

'Thank you all for another pleasant year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. I hope you all have a good summer and I expect to see you all back here in September ready to learn! I urge you all to stay safe during this summer and not to do anything foolish!' he looked at the marauders. 'I will not dwell on the topic but I ask you all to be aware of the dark forces that dare to threaten our world. Now, no dawdling and of to bed. Pip, pip!'

All the students got up and bustled out or the hall making their way to their respective common rooms to have a good night's sleep. After all, they had a train to catch early the next morning.

The next morning, the students of Hogwarts got up early to catch the school train. Some were all ready to leave for Hogsmeade station the minute the clock struck eight, some however, had lost certain precious items that couldn't be replaced.

'Where is it?'

'You had it last!'

'No I didn't

'Yes you did! In detention the other day!'

'I haven't had detention in over a week!'

'You had one yesterday!'

'Oh yeah…'

The marauders were tearing apart their dorm room looking for their beloved marauders map. During Remus' annual packing check, they had discovered that no-one had a clue where the map was.

'All right, where did you see it last?' Remus asked Sirius who the marauders had concluded had had the map most recently.

'We already said that he had it in detention!' James' said annoyed with his hand over his eyes in exasperation.

'Why did you have it in detention?' Remus asked curiously.

'To see where the professors were so I could sneak out!' he said as if it was obvious.

'Where did you go?'

'Room of requirement.'

James and Remus looked at each other and then at Sirius waiting for him to realise what they had figured out. Peter looked lost. They looked like this for barely thirty seconds before Sirius realised where he had left the map.

'Oh!' he cried before sprinting from the room to retrieve it.

The three boys who were left in the dorm went through one last check that they had gotten everything before leaving their trunks on their beds and heading down to the carriages that were to take them down to the Hogwarts express.

They were just about to step into a free carriage when they heard echoing footsteps behind them. They all looked back to see Sirius running towards them with the map in his hand. 'Found it!' he was yelling.

'Now how'd we forget about him?' James muttered to Remus who chuckled appreciatively.

They all hurried into the carriage which pulled off immediately after all four boys were settled. On the way down to the train, they discussed their recent successful prank and all the others they had pulled during the fifth year. At the time they hadn't seemed harmful, especially the last one, but James was starting to see what Lily meant by calling him a bully. He tried to not let it worry him.

They had soon arrived at the station and were boarding the Hogwarts express where they found their trunks in a compartment towards the back of the train. They all sat down, Peter near the window, (because he suffered from travel sickness if he wasn't), Sirius next to him, Remus opposite Sirius and James opposite Peter. When the train pulled of Sirius pulled out a pack of exploding snap cards and laid them on the table that Remus had just conjured. Soon, the boys were involved in a furious game of exploding snap which Peter was watching like a puppy. James however, was paying no attention, so wasn't aware that Remus was losing to Sirius. All of a sudden, a loud bang was heard and Remus' eyebrows were singed as well as the sleeve of James school robes which had been resting on the table in close proximity of the pile of cards.

'OW!' he yelled astonished at what had just happened. Sirius laughed at him and told him to be more careful before healing the burn and returning to the game.

James rubbed his arm, which, although it had been healed, still stung slightly. He secretly hoped Sirius didn't want to become a Healer because he never quite finished his patch ups. He'd get his mum to look it over again when he got home if she was there. He looked out the window and watched the world whiz by just thinking about her words. The previous day he had come to a conclusion and was determined to follow through, though he saw no obvious way to do it. He didn't want to lose himself in the process and had decided to just start small. This way he could carry on being his imaginative self and pulling the famous marauder pranks. He would however stop playing nasty tricks on random people, (Slytherin's), or bullying them as some people called it. He would start paying more attention in the lessons, although he didn't need to. And he would stop pestering her. Maybe this way she would see the changes he was trying to make and finally agree to go out with him. James Potter had decided it was time to grow up.

Reviews are not necessary but always welcome!

I'll post the next few chapters on 24/11/2012

Thanks for reading!

Galindaba

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