Disclaimer: I don’t own the Marauders, though I wish I did! UGH.
Of Brooms and Trees
James forward his brows. “Accio Broom!”
They stood there, staring out at the dark trees.
“Do it again. And concentrate more!” Sirius said.
James raised his wand-arm again. “Accio Broom!”
“Accio Broom! Accio Broom!! Accio Broom!!!”
James threw down his wand in frustration. “Mum’s going to kill me.” He joined his wand on the ground.
“Aw, James, we’ll get it back somehow.” Said Sirius, trying to sound convincing. “And there’s always the school brooms.”
“Oh, yeah, those Cleansweeps are really going to get me far. Butterflies can out fly those.”
“Well, it’s better than nothing.” Remus put in.
James just groaned. “Oooh-hooo, but my parents! I can’t just go home for Christmas and tell them I’ve lost my good broom! Because of a supid reason, too! They’ll kill me!! I’m doomed... doomed!”
“Oh stop wallowing Prongs, we’ll get it back!” Sirius said.
“We’ll never know tell we try.” Peter added.
“And what do you plan to do, Peter? Skip off into the forest and call out its name?”
“Actually....” Sirius said, gazing back out at the trees. “That’s a good idea.”
“Actually, Sirius, it’s a dumb idea. Going out in the Forbidden Forest at midnight?! It’s dark, we couldn’t see properly, and we wouldn’t even have a clue as to what direction we’d have to go!” Remus stated deftly.
“Yes we would!” Said Sirius, defiantly. “I saw it blow away! It went off in that direction!” He waved his hand vaguely to their right, but Remus look unconvinced.
“Right, Padfoot. Just over at those cluster of 10,000 trees. We’d be lost in there tell Easter break.”
“Well, at least I wouldn’t have to tell my parents for another 5 months....”
“Not you too James!” Remus said exasperated.
“Oh, come on, Moony!” Sirius said loudly. “We wouldn’t get lost! We’d have you! And Peter!”
“Oh, we’d be lost tell Summer break if I lead.” Peter said sheepishly.
“Too true, Wormy, too true. But Moony here....”
“Who says Moony will even go? I quite like my arms and legs attached to my body, thank you.”
“It won’t be that bad....”
“Well, we always go in the forest during full moons! What’s the difference now?”
“The difference? Oh, maybe that during full moons we’re all animals? And we never go in too deep when we are.”
“You’re just making excuses. And we can still turn into animals!”
“You can still turn into animals, Pafoot.”
“Exactly! So we can protect you if we run into somethin’!”
“And then I’ll feel real safe!” Remus said sarcastically. “And when we’re all lying about the Hospital Wing, I’ll get to tell you all ‘I told you so’.”
“So, does that mean we’ll go?” James said hopefully.
Remus sighed, bowing his head. “Well... I don’t know what I’d do without you tell Easter.”
“All right then!” Sirius said enthusiastically. “Lets get going then!” He pulled out his wand and began to twirl it. Peter swallowed, looking very pale as he pulled out his own. James jumped to his feet and was brushing himself off as Remus said, “Don’t light your wands yet, or it’ll look very interesting if four balls of light are bobbing towards the forest.”
“Too true, Moony!” Sirius said, looking absolutely thrilled about their upcoming adventure. “We should try it sometime!”
“That’s not funny, Padfoot. You still haven’t finished your week worth of detention with McGonagall.”
“Eh.” Sirius said, shrugging.
And so the motley crew marched into the dark, foreboding forest.
“Uhh, my foot hurts.”
It was about 1 hour, and 30 moans later.
“I knew we should have kept to the path.”
“Oh, be quite!”
James paused and they all stopped.
He sighed, his shoulders slumping. They pressed on.
The moon and stars flinted in and out as they walked. There was no wind, but the trees still seemed to whisper.
Peter kept looking behind them and James kept looking up. Sirius was searching the darkness around them and Remus was attempting to crawl through a bush.
“Ack, I’m stuck!” Sirius clomped over to help him. When Remus was freed they found themselves in a small break in the never-ending trees. The moon above was casting an chilly light down.
They started to cross it when the bush to their left shook. And out emerged....
“Whoa...!” Sirius breathed, his mouth opening with shock and excitement. “A centaur!”
Peter swallowed and slid a little behind Remus, staring fearfully up at the centaur’s approching face.
The centaur stopped, gazing down at the foursome, his face quite made of stone.
“Young humans,” he said. “Why are you in the forest?”
Remus seemed to be the first to find his communication skills. “W-we’re sorry, sir! We didn’t mean to... intrude.” His eyes were round and he seemed to be holding his breath. James just nodded, looking a bit cautious, but curious all the same. Sirius looked as though his birthday had come early, and Peter just look downright terrified.
“You have not intruded, but ones so young should not be roaming the forest this night. It is dangerous.” Remus shot a glance at Sirius.
James spoke up to explain. “Sir, we’re just here to look for my broomstick. It got caught in that storm earlier today and was blown away in here.” He gestured to the trees. The centaur look toward the direction of James’s hand, but did not drop his gaze back. After a while it was apparent that he was not looking at the trees, but at the stars.
After a while, James tentivly interrupted. “Erm... have you, by chance... seen it?”
The centaur took a while to look back down again, but when he did so, he answered directly to James . “There is much wood in the forest, your chances of finding it are little to none.”
Sirius, who had also been looking up at the stars curiously, look back at the centaur. “But it’s got to be in here somewhere!” He interjected. “I saw it crash into a tree from the Quidditch stands!”
“I never said it was not here. Search, if you must, but be warned: go any farther and you shall risk more peril.”
Sirius blinked then stood up straighter. “I’m not afraid.”
“Then I bid you good luck.” And with that, the centaur walked away back into the trees. There was a faint rustle, then silence.
None of the boys spoke for a few seconds. Then...
“Well he was helpful.” Sirius had put on a pouty face, but his eyes were sparkling.
“I guess.” Said Remus.
“I was joking, Moony.”
“I know... but still.”
“He just said there was a bunch of wood and looked at the sky!!”
“He warned us!”
“Oh yeah, like we didn’t get enough of that from you!”
Remus’s eyes squinted.
“Oh, shut up Padfoot!” James said in an agitated tone. “We’re wasting time!” He looked around. “I’m going to try the Summoning Charm from here.”
He raised his wand and concentrated.
They all waited, scanning the tree tops.
James began to look desperate. “Accio Broom!!”
“Er, James, what was that noise?” Remus said nervously.
Peter began to whimper at another distinct crunching noise.
“Pro-probably just another centaur....”
But suddenly, the bushes to their right shook, and a beast that looked like a bear with silver spiked fur growled out, facing them.
“AAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!” Peter screamed grabbing on to Remus who grabbed Sirius who was quite frozen.
James turned around and gasped... Then screamed the next moment as something stabbed his back!
James whirled around, expecting to see another bear-beast, but instead found his broomstick hovering placidly.
“GUYS! GET ON!!!” He yelled, swinging his leg over it.
There was no need to tell them twice. With a rush they threw themselves on in no particular order and up they shot! Rushing into the cool night sky. They could hear the beast growling below them.
“Aaaaaah!” James moaned, gripping his broom very tightly between his knees and hands, trying to steady it. “She’s going to break! You’re all too heavy!! Oh noooo!” The broom had started to sink into the trees.
They had fallen into the canopy of leaves and branches. There was much yells and screaming as if the four of them were on a roller coaster ride....
“Hold on, guys!!!”
They emerged again looking quite a bit like a forest themselves now, with James pulling up as hard as he could on his broom.
And slowly, but very wobbly, they made their way across the dark forest tops.
As soon as they cleared (well almost cleared) the last trees, landing was very fast and very vertical. They all rolled off the into a pile of bodies and twigs.
“Hey! What’s goin’ on out here?”
A huge black mass was walking towards them.
It was Hagrid.
“Ah... nothing?” Sirius said hopefully. But it was inevitable, as Hagrid’s ruddy face became visible they knew they were in for it.
“Well James, there was probably a lesson in all this!” Sirius said brightly during the foursome’s detention the next night. Cleaning the Trophy room. Fun.
“Yeah,” James said stiffly, scrubbing his trophy harder . “Don’t be a git and fly your broom in a storm.”
They all laughed.
Or is it? : )