The Sugar Quill
Author: Poppy P (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Beautiful Boy  Chapter: Default
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Beautiful Boy

Beautiful Boy

By Poppy P


Just a little songfic to John Lennon’s ‘Beautiful Boy’, a heartbreaking song if ever there was one.  This was inspired by a theory about Harry’s hair which I came up with during the reading of OotP.  There’s a slight, melancholy air to this.  I have a feeling that we’ll be seeing plenty of angst in the coming year of fanfiction. (Why JK?  Why?????!!!)  The One True Way has always intrigued me, but I’ve never attempted to write it.  This short fic hints at it vaguely.  Having never written anything of this nature, I hope I did it justice.  Thanks to Soupytwist and Z for the beta and kind words….


then he realized that Mrs. Weasley was attacking his hair with a wet comb.  She pressed hard on the top of his head.

            Harry shook his head.

                        Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, ch 7, page 123, US edition



Close your eyes,

Have no fear,

The monster’s gone,

He’s on the run and your daddy’s here,



Beautiful, beautiful,

Beautiful Boy,


            Lily decided that James and Sirius had been alone with Harry for far too long.  James had gone upstairs over half an hour ago to put their nine-month-old son down for a nap with Sirius at his heels and she hadn’t heard from them since.  It was Lily’s experience that extended periods of silence from those two usually meant trouble.  Taking her wand in hand, she crept very slowly up the stairs. 

            Sure enough, just as she reached the landing, she saw a telltale burst of soft colored light flash under the door of the nursery.  This was immediately followed by a whimper of protest from her son and the sound of James and Sirius anxiously trying to quiet him. 


Before you go to sleep,

Say a little prayer,

Every day, in every way,

It’s getting better and better,



Beautiful, beautiful

Beautiful Boy…


            Lily walked the length of the dimly lit hall quickly but silently and paused outside the door.  She peeked inside through narrowed eyes and watched as her husband paced the room, jiggling their son frantically in one arm and waving a teddy bear over him with the other.

            “Shush, or we’ll catch it from your mum,” said James with urgency.

            Sirius was leaning against the crib, smirking with amusement.  “Oh someone’s going to catch it all right, but I doubt it’s Harry.”

            Lily stepped back as James shifted a guilty glance towards the door.  “Maybe she won’t notice,” he said hopefully.

            Lily tensed.  From her spot at the door she could not see her son, as James had his back to her. 

            Sirius gave a short, bark-like laugh.  “I doubt it.  She notices everything.”

            “Yeah, well,” said James with a touch of defiance, “it was worth it.”  He looked down at his son with tenderness.  “You’ll thank me for this someday, son.  The witches will love it!”  He rubbed Harry’s cheek with the back of his hand.  “Worked for your mum.”

            Sirius collapsed against the crib, shaking with mirth.  “Really?  Because I distinctly remember Lily saying she thought you were a great, fat-headed prat with hair like a mop…”

            “Oi!”  James flipped the teddy bear at Sirius’ face.  “You best shut it before I tell her that you were the one who made the charm permanent.”  The stuffed animal bounced off Sirius’ nose.

            Permanent?  Lily stifled a gasp but James didn’t hear it over Harry’s giggle.

            Sirius pulled a grim face.  “Look at that, laughing at his godfather’s predicament.”  He pulled Harry out of James’ arms and brought him up to his face.  “More respect out of you, young man,” said Sirius sternly as he rubbed their noses together, causing Harry to shriek with delight. 

            With Sirius holding the baby up, Lily finally deduced what had been done to her son and was now torn between irritation and amusement.  She finally settled on amusement, especially when she remembered that they thought the charm on Harry’s hair was permanent.  Honestly, men!


Out on the ocean, sailing away

I can hardly wait,

To see you come of age,

But I guess we’ll both

Just have to be patient,

Yes it’s a long way to go,

A hard row to hoe

But in the meantime…


            James clapped Sirius on the shoulder, both of them smiling at Harry now.  “You know, Padfoot, you’re really good at this, and Harry’ll need some fellow Marauders when he gets to Hogwarts.  Ever think about it?  Becoming a father, I mean…”

            James stopped suddenly as Sirius tensed, his eyes wary.  From the hallway Lily closed her eyes tightly, wondering how her husband could be so tactless. 

            “I…er…sorry,” James stammered, “but, well…you can always adopt, right?”

            Sirius smiled, the awkward moment disrupted by Harry’s joyful gurgling.

“Yeah, we’ve thought about it actually, but there’s no hurry, right?  Plenty of time to produce some little Marauders.  All the time in the world.” They both smiled fondly at the baby, each lost in their private musings for the moment.  Suddenly Sirius shook his head, as though remembering something.  “Speaking of repopulating the British wizarding population, did I tell you about my cousin Arthur?”

            James scrunched his brow, trying to recall the name.  “Weasley?”

            “Yeah.  His wife’s pregnant with their seventh,” said Sirius incredulously, his blue eyes wide.  “Molly swears it’s a girl this time.”

            “He’s the one with all those red-haired kids, right?” asked James.  Sirius nodded.  A calculating look came over James.  “So if it is a girl, perhaps Harry will have his own little, red-headed lass to chase at Hogwarts.”

            “I hope she appreciates the hair better than Lily did.”  Sirius sidestepped the elbow that James aimed for his ribs.

            “Shut it!”


Before you cross the street

Take my hand,

Life is what happens to you

While you’re busy making other plans…


            Lily pressed her knuckles against her mouth to suppress a snort of laughter.

            James looked quickly at the door, fearing that they’d been caught, but Lily pulled back just in time.  Nevertheless he took the baby from Sirius’ arms and set him down in the crib. 

“We’d better let Harry have his nap, or Lily’ll have our heads.  Besides,” he added heavily, “we have to go over that report from Dumbledore.  They got the Bones family last week.  Killed the whole lot of them, kids and everything.”

            The two friends shared a moment of silence.  Sirius finally broke it, attempting to capture their previous lighthearted tone.  “I’m surprised Lily hasn’t come up to see what we’re up to,” said Sirius, with a smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes.  “She’s losing her touch.”

            Lily frowned, indignant. 

            A slightly apprehensive expression crossed James’ face.  “You’re right.  We’d better Apparate out to the garden so that she’ll think we’ve been there all along.  She’s going to go mad about the hair anyway, so let’s delay it as long as possible.” 

            As soon as she heard them Disapparate, Lily crossed the threshold of the nursery and went up to her son who was now babbling contentedly in his crib. 

“There’s my little wizard,” she cooed, smoothing the rumpled hair on the back of his head.  “What’ve those idiots done to my little lamb, eh?”

            Harry, oblivious to the condition of his hair, returned his mother’s smile. 


            Lily swooped down and covered his little face with kisses stopping only when her son gave a small, warning cry of objection. 

“All right.  All right.  You just look so adorable in your Quidditich rumpled hair.”  Lily snorted.  “Permanent my arse,” she muttered. 

She took up her wand and aimed it at her son, intent on returning it to its normal, soft, silky state.  Something stayed her hand, however.  She had a sharp, sudden vision of another young man with black hair that stuck up at all angles, surrounded by his three close friends.  In her vision he was laughing, carefree.  His only worry was winning the House cup and trying to impress a certain red-haired Gryffindor girl.  The current times made Lily feel painfully removed from that young girl. 

            “Perhaps we don’t need to change this just yet,” she murmured softly, running a hand gently, but futilely through Harry’s wayward hair.  She picked up her son, settled him against her shoulder and echoed Sirius’ words, “Plenty of time for that later.”



Beautiful, Beautiful,

Beautiful Boy…










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