chapter twenty four - moony, wormtail, padfoot and prongs

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"Finally we're here. I'm knockered," Sirius groaned as he flung himself onto one of the beds in the Shrieking Shack.

Remus immediately collapsed onto the other, James sat on the edge of the bed Sirius occupied and Peter on Remus', so that all boys were seated.

"I'm hungry," Peter stated, his eyes fixed on the bag in Sirius' grasp.

"Aren't you always, Wormtail?" Sirius asked innocently.

Peter blushed when they all laughed.

"Come off it guys, I'm actually hungry too," James said.

"Me too," Remus mumbled, his voice muffled in the blanket.

Sirius dragged a dirty old wooden table between the two beds and put the plastic down onto it. He opened it, revealing that day's lunch; chicken pie, green peas, some more vegetables and as a dessert, treactle tart and fudge brownies.

"C'mon Padfoot, you know I don't like fudge brownies." James complained.

"No one cares what you like and don't like, Prongs." Sirius teased.

"Oh is it now?" James proceeded to punch Sirius, but he blocked it and sent a punch in James' direction. They began wrestling.

"We're going to finish everything," said Remus, who had just sat up.

James and Sirius fought for a few more minutes before joining Remus and Peter in the feast.

"Prongs?" Sirius asked after a moment of silence.

"Hmm?"

"You want to date Evans, yeah?"

James looked over at Sirius suspiciously. "That's correct."

Sirius grinned devilishly. "Let's practice."

Remus rolled his eyes, muttering, "Oh Merlin."

"Practice?" James asked.

"Correct. Step one; be seductive and charming."

James stared into Sirius' eyes and said in a breathy voice, "Roses must be your favourite flower, Evans."

"They aren't, though." Remus interjected weakly.

"Her favourites are actually lilies," Peter added.

James shook his head. "Nope, they aren't. I heard her tell Marlene that roses are her favourite. In fact, she hates lilies."

"I wouldn't put it past you to know that." Remus sighed.

"Anyway, I reckon this isn't the right place to practice, seeing as it's haunted and all." Peter said.

"Dumbledore told me he convinced the Hogsmeade villagers that the Shrieking Shack is haunted so that they can stay away." Remus said.

"But what about all the screaming that they claim to hear?" Peter asked.

"That's not screaming from any ghosts or spirits, Wormtail," Remus began, sighing. "It's from when I transform."

Silence followed this statement. Sirius glanced at them each in turn, his gaze on James' the longest, and they shared a telepathic conversation.

Sirius grinned at Remus. "AROOOOOOOOo!"

"What are you doing?" Remus hissed, slapping his hand over Sirius' mouth.

"It's haunted for a reason Moony, because I'm in it." He then proceeded to slap Remus' hand away and continue howling. He even raised his wand, muttered, "Lumos," and used that light as if it was moonlight. After a few seconds, James joined him, his wand also lit, and Peter, not wanting to be left out, began to howl as well, his wand also lit. Finally, Remus realised nothing he said was going to stop them so he too began howling, his wand lit as well.

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