The Sugar Quill
Author: Sammy Weasley  Story: Sharing of Ideas  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

“You know Padfoot, for a dead guy, I have a lot to think about,” James Potter said to his best friend, as they lounged around

Disclaimer: JK is the genius behind Harry Potter. All characters in this story are hers. 

 

“You know Padfoot, for a dead guy, I have a lot to think about,” James Potter said to his best friend, as they lounged around in the land of the dead.

They were in a lounge-like area, decorated in Gryffindor colors, of course. James was sprawled over a large comfy chair that would have fit right in with the Gryffindor common room. Padfoot was on the floor, in a position very much like his Animagus form. In fact, had he wanted to transform, his head would have been on big black paws instead of his arms.

“Do you Prongs? I haven’t noticed. What is on your mind?” Sirius Black replied, rolling to look up at his friend from his back.

“Well, first there is that revenge thing for Peter. Truthfully, I don’t know if he would make a good ghost. Where would he haunt? Then there is that joke that the twins want to honour us with, but I guess you can help me with that. Also, we really haven’t gone to visit any one recently. I tried Dumbledore two nights ago, but he is going to take a little to get through to.”

“Most definitely, that is a lot to think about for a dead guy,” Sirius commented as he sat up, looking ready to do battle with some of these thoughts. “I tried Dumbledore three nights ago, and didn’t get through. Might have to try with both of us, or ask Lily to help. Then there is the twins project. I have had a few thought but haven’t really come up with anything solid. Like something with my motorbike and your broomstick, but I don’t know what for Moony. He hates to fly, unless he absolutely has to. There is the Whomping Willow, but we really don’t want the students at Hogwarts to know there is a passage under there. As for Peter, he will probably be afraid of death and turn into a ghost like you told Harry. In which case, it should be made possible for him to never be able to leave Myrtle’s stall.”

“One would almost pity Myrtle, Sirius,” Lily Potter said, as she wandered over to see what her husband and friend were up to. Their thinking in life or death usually had interesting consequences. James’s chair expanded a little for Lily to join him at his seat. “What are you two contemplating so seriously?”

“I contemplate everything siriusly.” Sirius replied flashing a smile at Lily while James groaned.

“That joke is really old Padfoot. It died before you did,” James informed him. “And I think Myrtle and Wormtail would make a very cute couple.”

“He wouldn’t come out of the stalls for shame of someone finding him in the girls’ lavatory. So there is one of your ponderings taken care of.”

“What else were you pondering?” Lily asked as the seat shrank again; James had gotten up to pace.

“We are trying to come up with something for the twins to make to honor the Marauders by, but we really haven’t had much luck. Then there is also trying to talk to Dumbledore, we have both tried separately.”

“With no such luck?” Lily asked.

“Exactly, so we may have to try together or have all three of us go at it,” James responded. “What about a painting?”

“What about a painting?” Sirius repeated, looking at James like he had gone nutters.

“It could be a painting of sorts, with a Grim-like dog, a werewolf and a stag.”

“Who could talk?” Sirius asked, looking a little excited. “There would be no way to record my voice but Harry sounds an awful lot like you.”

“Why would they have to be our voices? Most of the students would probably recognize Moony’s anyway. We still need to have some form of secrecy.”

“True, true; so we leave the voices up to the twins. What else? It wouldn’t be any fun to sleep while bored, like normal paintings.”

“Sirius, normal paintings do not move,” Lily interjected. “Magical painting move, talk and sleep.”

“Minor technicality,” Sirius replied, dismissing the thought with a wave of his hand. He too stood to think a little, and his pillows disappeared to give him enough space. “Well, guess we can have Moony sleeping. He does like to do that, especially with the potion. But what about us?”

“Wrestling? That was always fun,” James offered.

“Your horns always would get in the way. Just like your slightly inflated head.”

“Slightly inflated? Well, I guess by seventh year it was only slightly inflated,” Lily commented, with a smile.

“Thank you, love,” James replied with a sweeping bow. “So what are these animals going to say?”

“Oh, I don’t know. Could have Harry loan the map to the twins and have them insult it. That would give them a few ideas,” Sirius suggested.

“What a brilliant idea,” James said with sarcasm. “All they would be told was to bugger off, stop being a nosy git, and other sarcastic things.”

“Like an idiot, or ugly, or rude comments about their facial features,” Lily said, trying to keep a straight face.

“Mr. Moony got it right when he said he had an abnormally large nose.”

“What are you two talking about?” Sirius asked, looking a little confused.

“In Harry’s third year, he snuck into Hogsmeade using the map and cloak. Malfoy stepped on the cloak, pulling it off Harry’s head,” James started to explain.

Sirius, thinking that it would be a long story, plopped back down on the floor. His pillows reappeared for him recline on.

“Since Harry wasn’t allowed to be in Hogsmeade, Malfoy ran straight back to the castle. You can probably guess which professor he ran to report it to, too,” Lily added. “So Snape caught up with Harry, and made him turn out his pockets. One of the things was the map, cleared, and Snape wanted to know what it was.”

“Harry wouldn’t tell, but stopped Snape from burning it. In his amazing brilliance, he ordered the map to yield its information to him, as he was the master of the school.”

At this point James had to stop, since Sirius was rolling on the floor with laughter. Lily was looking slightly amused, whether from the memory or Sirius, James didn’t know.

“So the map thoroughly insulted Snape?” Sirius asked when he regained his composure and sat back up. “That is too good. Do you remember exactly what we said?”

“Well, Moony presented his compliments to Professor Snape and begged him to keep his abnormally large nose out of people’s business,” James responded with a small smile on his lips.

“Mr. Prongs agreed with Moony and added that Snape was an ugly git,” Lily continued as Sirius’s grin grew and James fought harder with his.

“Mr. Padfoot registered amazement that an idiot like Snape ever became a professor,” James followed up, giving up completely on fighting his grin. Sirius was holding in his laughter.

“And finally, Mr. Wormtail told Snape to have a good day and wash his hair, the slimeball,” Lily finished.

When they finished Sirius broke into laughter again, with James and Lily joining in. When they had gotten control of themselves, Sirius looked thoughtful again.

“We could have Ginny talk to the map,” Sirius suggested.

“I don’t even want to see those replies,” Lily muttered.

“Moony insisted it be taught to be polite to the ladies,” James informed his wife. “We would give very flattering complements to her. I am sure the twins can come up with sayings. ”

“Yeah, I suppose,” Sirius, replied. “So all we have to do is give them the basic information.”

“And how are you two proposing to do that?” Lily asked.

“Easy, I go visit Fred and Padfoot visits George,” James replied.

“How will they know to get the animals right?”

“They have seen me,” Sirius started. “And, well, there are pictures of werewolves, so there is Moony, and Prongs is a white stag with hazel eyes and antlers that make a full rack and are black.”

“Right, sounds like we have it down. When do we want to go, Padfoot?” James asked.

“Could go now, I think it is night there.”

“All right, let’s go.”

With that, James and Sirius disappeared from Lily’s sight.

“Boys, they never really change do they,” Lily muttered to herself as she went off to find her mother-in-law to commiserate about Potter men.

“Wow, what is this place? Is anyone here?” Fred called out in the dark, as he found himself in a new place. “I was definitely not here before.”

“No, I don’t think you were ever here before,” James said, coming into Fred’s view.

Fred’s mouth just hung open as he realized that the man in front of him was not Harry, like he first thought, but James Potter.

“Am I dead?” Fred asked.

“No, this is the communication area between the land of the living and the land of the dead. Ron said you were needing some ideas for your joke shop.”

“You’ve been to see Ron?” Fred was having a hard time comprehending this.

“Ron, Harry, Moony, tried Dumbledore, but haven’t been able to get through to him. Padfoot is off in George’s head.”

 

“Weird, what is this place?” George asked, looking around his new surroundings.

“A communication area,” Sirius answered, making George jump. “Don’t worry, you are not dead. This is just a bridge between the living and the land of the dead.”

“Wicked,” George replied, as he sat down. “So why did you come to see me?”

“Drew straws, James got Fred. We have a new product for your shop.”

 

“So what is your idea?” Fred was asking, after getting enough information about these visits, to be satisfied that he wasn’t dead. James had drawn up chairs so they were not sitting on the floor.

“Well, it is sort of like a painting,” James started to explain. “With three animals. A werewolf, a stag and a dog.”

“A painting with Moony, Padfoot and Prongs,” Fred repeated, sounding a little skeptic. “What will be so special about the painting?”

 

“Like any normal Wizarding painting, the occupants will be able to move. Padfoot and Prongs had, still have, a tendency to wrestle a lot. Moony can just sleep when he gets bored, of course. They talk, to the passersby too,” Sirius was explaining to George, as they were sprawled on the floor of their conversation area.

“What do they say?” George asked, liking the idea.

“Anything, rude things to Snape.”

“Naturally, I wouldn’t have anything less.”

“Moony always could do a really good wolfish whistle, when drunk. He would never do that sort of thing when sober. So to the ladies, they are complete flatterers, that includes Ginny and your mum.”

“Do we have to?” George asked with a little whine.

“Yes, don’t want you to get into too much trouble. But they can give Percy all the crap in the world. And rag on Bill and Charlie. But be nice to Harry, that is the important thing.”

 

“So what do these animals look like?” Fred asked, having finally warmed up to the idea.

“Well, you know what Padfoot looks like. A Grim with deep, dark eyes; but they have a VERY mischievous gleam to them. Never trust his innocent eyes,” James replied, relaxing a little now that Fred wasn’t so suspicious.

“Right, and there are picture of werewolves. So Moony shouldn’t be too hard.”

“Correct. According to Sirius, I was white and kept my hazel eyes.”

“What about the prongs part?”

“Black, and what Lily called a full rack. Whatever that means.”

“Must be a Muggle term. So you are just giving us the basics?”

“Absolutely, it is your invention. We are just getting the wheels turning. Like with the Harry Hair.”

 

“You thought of the Harry Hair? Bill was a perfect person to test it on,” George was saying.

“Yup, thought it up when we were visiting with Ron. Have you worked out something with the taste?”

“Just finished before bed. I plan to try it on Fred in the morning. After he has combed, but before Angelina comes over.”

“That should be good. Bill was very funny to see with that mop of hair. It was also good to see Harry laughing.”

“When we evaluated later, it was decided to be a success. Getting Harry to laugh is more important then getting the product right the first time.”

 

“So you think you two can get this thing to work?” James asked.

“Oh sure, no problem. And we’ll definitely see if we can get Harry to have Bill try to activate the map,” Fred replied with a grin that reminded James very much of Sirius when plotting something particularly nasty yet very enjoyable.

“Right then, I should let you get back to sleep. You will need your rest for tomorrow.”

 

“Well, it was nice to see you Sirius. Keep James out of trouble,” George said, shaking Sirius’s hand.

“I’ll try, but that is usually Lily’s job. And I would hate to take it away from her,” Sirius replied with a smile. “We’ll be watching occasionally to see how things are going.”

“Then will I see you again? At some point in time?”

“Oh yeah, nothing better to do when you are dead then think up jokes for Harry’s joke shop.” Sirius replied with a grin as he faded out of view.

 

“So that is done, right Prongs?” Sirius asked James when they had both gotten back to the land of the dead. Again they were in their Gryffindor lounge, standing there looking at each other. Going to talk was not a problem, but coming back could make them dizzy.

“That is that. Should be interesting to see how they pull it off.”

“It most definitely will,” came Sirius’s reply as he was moving a little ways from James.

With a small pop, a giant black dog was in his place getting ready to knock James over. James was two steps ahead and was transforming to a stag before Sirius could get into a crouched position. When the dog attacked, the stag was ready. The following wrestling match was entertaining, for the participants and Lily who didn’t have the heart to break them up.

 

As Fred resigned to having Harry Hair for the next eight hours, he and George compared notes from the conversations they had had with James and Sirius. Slowly they fit the pieces together and the basics for The Marauder’s Memorial was assembled.

 

 

AN: Thanks to Silver Phoenix for beta-ing and potions gurl for allowing me to bounce ideas off of.

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