Chapter 1 : Cauldrons and Cheese
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A corridor in Hogwarts
"You know this isn't personal, don't you? This is just me, keeping this whole situation under control. I think this could have gone either way, but this is just... Come on, do your neck some good and stop squirming, would you? It could break any time. Hey, Snape! Did you get anything out of yours?"
"Of course I have, Aubrey." Severus answered, letting go of a groggy student's collar to inspect a vial in his hand. "I do wish it didn't make them drool so much... I'll have to work on that." he added under his breath to himself.
"Oi, stop it. Hey--!" Bertram Aubrey called as the student under his knee struggled and managed to break free.
Snape flicked his wand upwards and the escapee was swung by his ankles in the air, his head barely floating above the ground.
"Well, well, well. Peter Pettigrew..." Severus droned. "I don't suppose they would tell you the password..."
"Even if I did know, I wouldn't tell you! And I'll tell them about what you're planning to do, you'll see! You won't get to--"
"You won't tell a thing, Wormtail."
Severus took Peter's gasp as a golden opportunity; he had kept his vial at the ready and, with a swift swing, threw some of it's content in Pettigrew's upside-down mouth.
Nobody cared some got into his nose and Snape flicked his wand again to let the plump boy slump down of the floor, unconscious.
“This potion is awesome, Snape!” Bertram clamoured.
“Yes, I know. But let us not waste any more time, the hour draws near and I've just learned they're doing this for a very special reason. So... To the cauldrons!”
With a dramatical swing of his cape and a sudden cloud of silver smoke, Severus Snape was gone.
“Snape, wait up!” Aubrey whined as he hurried down the corridor, leaving the passed out students on the floor to wake up in a few minutes with a slight loss of short-term memory.
One turn later and he was walking, almost running, next to his partner in crime, asking about the “very special reason”.
Severus ignored him and inwardly cursed at the lack of class he was stuck with. This was no time to chat. He had exclaimed “to the cauldrons”. And had managed to execute that dramatical exit he had so careful worked on – he had even invented a silver smoke ball!
Obviously, he was working with a moron.
Snape managed to repress a sigh. It didn't matter. None of it did. Right now, he needed to focus on a very particular potion he had to brew.
A particularly difficult one.
A sweet one.
A devious smirk twisted his lips.
Was there anything sweeter than revenge?
Seventh Floor, Gryffindor Tower
“I'm telling you, he's taking too long! He should be back by now.”
“Cam down, Prongs. Don't be such a mother hen.”
“Yeah, Moony's right. Worms probably found a wedge of cheese and lost track of time. You know how he is.”
“Don't call him Worms. It's not his name and gives the wrong idea.”
“Oh, come on, James. You know it doesn't give the wrong idea.”
“Well, you tell me. How would you like it if I called you Paddy? Stop laughing, Remus; you're encouraging him!”
“You're such a girl, you know that?” Sirius sighed, stretched out on the couch and crossed his arms comfortably behind his head,.
Lupin stopped laughing and Potter straightened up in his armchair.
Black grinned mischievously and went on with his teasing:
“We three all know why you're really upset. It's not about Pettigrew... Why would be? It's about the partaaaay.”
Remus snickered as Sirius wiggled his hips lazily and waving his elbows around.
“If that's supposed to be dancing, it might be better if you stayed in...”
“Hey! I planned half a quarter of that party! I have a right to dance as poorly as I want and gross out all the chicks. They just flock around me like chickens and geese anyway, I can't stand it. And we all know you're not interested in any girl that'd fancy me.”
“What do you mean, half a quarter?” James asked, trying to change the subject.
“I mean that we'll probably run low on chocolate frogs and cakes pretty quickly. And that you fancy that annoying Evans. And that she's an arrogant, stuck-up bint.”
“Come on, Padfoot, she's not all bad...” Remus said while James exploded .
“How could this happen?! I saw you with the whole lot yesterday! You said you were bringing them to the Room!”
“Yeah, well... Getting there really tired me and when I arrived, I was forced to rest. One thing led to another and the bag was half-empty. Or half-full, if you'd rather see it that way.”
“I can't believe you'd do that...”
“I can't believe he can wolf down so much food and still be mere skin and bones.”
The three boys all grinned at Remus's pun.
“James and Lily, kissing in a tree...” Sirius started to sing in a mutter. “K-I-S-S-I---”
“That's it, you're getting it, Paddy!”
James launched at him so violently the couch almost tipped over – Sirius had managed to roll off to the floor just in time.
As they jumped to their feet, grinning, they brought their fists up and started their usual “dance of death”.
Remus sighed and watched as his friends brawled; kicking and pushing, laughing and calling each other names.
“Stop it, you're a disgrace!” he called after a few minutes.
They looked at him in surprise; Sirius was caught in a headlock while his hand was firmly gripping James' hair and pulling it back.
“What's next? Biting and scratching? If you're going to fight, at least fight like men. I mean, this is just- Wait, don't!” Remus exclaimed as his friends hurled themselves at him, throwing him and his armchair to the ground.
The portrait slammed shut, silencing them. They all got up as Peter walked in.
“Took you long enough!” Sirius barked, grinning. “James almost wet himself with worry.”
“Shut it, moron. Peter, you're drooling...”
“And you smell weird...” Remus added, slightly disgusted.
“So it was cheese...” Sirius whispered dramatically.
“You're not helping, Padfoot.” James hissed.
“Yeah, well I'm not trying to.”
“Yes, that might be the source of the problem” Remus announced in a very matter-of-fact tone.
“It was the cheese...” came from one.
“What?!” came from three.
“The cheese...” Peter repeated in a dazed tone. “I like cheese...”
Sirius was the first to laugh, almost immediately followed by Remus, then James.
"Yeah you do, you cheddar freak, you.” Sirius said and clapped Peter on the shoulder.
The small guy smiled gleefully, letting a strand of drool slide from the corner of his mouth.
“Let's get you upstairs...” Remus offered. “It's almost time to get ready anyway.”
“Yes, almost time...” James repeated. “Bloody hell, we'd better hurry or we won't be able to make it in time.”
“Yeah, it'd be such a drag to arrive late to our own party. Especially since you'd make her wait. You know, Ev--”
“Shut it. I swear, I'll hex you so bad you'll be drooling more than Wormtail is.” James threatened.
“Yes, what's up with that?” Remus asked.
Peter just grinned happily and wiped his mouth and chin with his sleeve. Sirius rolled his eyes and James sighed:
The four boys went up the stairs to their Common Room. Remus started listing last minute details while James tried to listen and smack Sirius on the back of the head because he wouldn't stop humming “Here comes the bride”. Peter was still grinning and thinking of cheese.
The four of them had no reason to believe anything could ever wrong, even if Pettigrew's behaviour was a bit odd. When wasn't it anyway?
A/N: “Here comes the bride” is the opening number to the third act of Richard Wagner's opera “Lohengrin”. It was first performed in 1850 in Weimar, Germany. Look it up if it doesn't ring any bells. :)
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