Sirius awoke in the middle of the night to the familiar weight of someone sitting on his bed.
"Nightmares?" He asked without opening his eyes. It had become somewhat of a ritual since last year that Remus would wake him when he was plagued by bad dreams.
"No," Said Remus quietly. "I just...I wanted to make sure you were alright, I guess."
Sirius sat up with a heavy sigh. "Yeah, I suppose so." then he grinned. "I'll feel much better tomorrow when we see the look on their face-"
"Sirius, pranking the Slytherins isn't going to make the problem magically disappear." Remus' amber eyes glowed brightly in the waning moonlight. Sirius wasn't sure he'd ever get use to those strange eyes.
"Remus," Sirius started cautiously. "Where'd you get those scars you have all over?"
The smaller boy seemed to panic for a moment and he quickly looked away. "You promised you'd never ask me that." He mumbled.
"I know, I'm sorry," Sirius apologized quickly and bit his lip. "I just need to know...I need to know that I'm not alone..."
Remus was very quiet as he seemed to struggle with what to say, he could feel Sirius' eyes burning into him, pleading with him. "I'm sorry, Sirius..." he whispered. "I can't...But I promise you, you are not alone."
The following morning at breakfast, all of the Slytherins were arrived late.
James, Sirius, Peter and Remus kept their heads down, busying themselvies with their toast and jam until the great hall suddenly erupted with laughter. When they did dare to lift their gaze from their plates they were met with the exact sight they had hoped for. The Slytherins walked in in a deadly silence, each one sporting bright scarlet and gold hair, and looking so angry that their faces were red to match.
The four boys joined the rest of the students' laughter, which only grew stronger as Regulus, Bellatrix and Severus approached them.
"Sirius." Regulus said through gritted teeth.
"Good, hahaha- Good Morning, Reggie!" Sirius managed, gasping for breaths and actually starting to hiccup. "You're looking rather spirited this morning!"
"You did this!" Said Snape, his beady dark eyes glaring.
"How?" Asked Remus, ever the calm one. "How on earth would we get into your common room without ever being seen? Let alone knowing the password."
"Don't try to act all innocent, Lupin. This has you lot written all over it!" Snape snapped.
"If it were us, and I'm not saying that it was," James said coyly, "I must say I'm surprised it even got to you, Snivellus. I was under the impression you didn't shower."
"Oh, Honestly!" Said Lily, loudly between bites of pancakes. "Would you boys grow up?"
"There will be plenty of time for that when we're older, Evans." James grinned, messing his hair.
"Settle down, everyone!" Dumbledor's voice spoke calmly over the chaos. Once everyone had quieted, he continued. "Now then, it's quite lovely to see the Slytherins showing such support for the other houses," He smiled pleasently. "Fifty points-"
"It's all their fault, Professor!" Bellatrix shrieked, pointing a shaking finger at the boys.
"Oh," The headmaster's tone changed. "Well that's quite different. I was going to award the Slytherin house with an extra fifty points for their school spirit. But alas, I seem to have been mistaken."
There were angry and disappointed outbursts from the Slytherin table. Sirius smirked cockily at his seething brother, with a look that clearly dared the younger boy to challenge him.
"You just wait, Sirius." Regulus whispered before he, Bellatrix and Severus returned to their table.
Breakfast ended and the students hustled out of the hall to get to their classes. The boys grabbed their things, all set to head out to charms when they were stopped by Professor Mcgonnagall, who stared them all down from behind her rectangular glasses.
"You four, my office. Now."
"Would any of you care to tell me just how you managed to turn all of the Slytherins' hair Gryffindor colors without knowing how to enter their common room?" McGonnagall asked.
"...If you don't know how we could have done it," Remus said carefully, "How could you be certain it was us?"
Mcgonnagall gave him a deadpanned sort of look. "Mr. Lupin, it is no secret that you four have a knack for trouble making."
"But you still can't say for certain-"
"No, Mister Black, I cannot. I can, however, deduce that given your talents for trickery and your obvious rivalry with the Slytherins that you're not exactly innocent either."
None of the boys said a word.
"Now, you boys may think that you can just go about marauding around the castle-"
"What's that mean?" Peter cocked an eyebrow.
"Plundering, thieving, all around delinquency." Remus supplied.
"Cool. Sounds like a pirate." Peter grinned.
Professor McGonnagall did not seem as amused as they were. "Boys," she continued seriously. "It is the first day of classes. Must I really tell you to behave yourselves?"
"Sorry Professor." They chorused.
The deputy headmistress sighed heavily. "Go on, then. Off to Charms with you." And they were dismissed.
Sirius barked with laughed as they made their way to Professor Flitwick's class. "I can't believe we got away with it! James, that cloak is beyond brilliant!"
"Told you it would be." James said proudly, and the two boys high-fived.
"We're lucky she couldn't pin it on us," said Remus. "But really, we need to be careful. Seems we've already given ourselves a reputation."
Peter nodded in agreement. "Yeah...What was that that she called us? The pirate word?"
Remus laughed. "Marauders."
"Yeah, that. I liked that."
"Has a nice ring to it." Said Sirius with a prideful smirk.
"Definitely." James agreed. "But Remus is right, we need to be careful not to get caught. We were far too close with Filch and Peeves...and really, I thought we were taking a short cut to charms, where are we?" He said looking around the corridor. "Bloody moving staircases...We really do need a map of this blasted castle..."
September passed and the weather grew colder. It was early October when a familiar argument broke out in the Gryffindor common room.
"Remus, I really don't see why you absolutely have to go home tomorrow! It's the middle of the week!" Sirius huffed.
Remus, looking quite exasperated as he usually did when the subject of returning home arose, slowly lowered his potions text book and rubbed his tired eyes. "Sirius, please...We've gone over this."
"Yes, I know, and I said I wouldn't bother you about it anymore. But I-"
"But nothing, Sirius! You said you'd stop!"
"Stop yelling..." Peter groaned. "I'm trying to write this stupid essay..."
"You know it's hopeless, Pete. Let them fight it out." James sighed.
"Yes, you said you wouldn't bother me about it but here we are having the same bloody-"
"I just don't think it's fair that your parents put your education at risk-"
"My education at risk? Sirius, that's ridicu-"
"Must the two of you argue all the time?" Marlene McKinnon yelled from across the common room. "We've all got studying to do, you know!"
"Oh shut your gob, McKnickers." Sirius teased.
"No, Remus! I want to know why-"
"James, why does the moon need to be full when you brew the temporary madness potion?" Peter asked mildly, trying to ignore the chaos around them.
"Er, I think it was something about the gravitational pull...I didn't take notes in class yesterday though. Remus, do you have the notes from potions?"
"Yeah, Remus. Since you won't be there tomorrow to brew the potion, you might as well just give James your notes." Sirius grumbled. And then Remus slammed his book down, causing the entire common room to go completely silent.
"Sirius that is enough!" The auburn haired boy practically growled. Every eye in Gryffindor common room was on them. "I do not have to explain myself to you! Now do me and yourself a bloody favor and stop prying." He picked up his books, throwing his potions notes at James and Peter. "The gravitational pull of the full moon. Tidal effects on the liquids in the potion and in the drinker's body cause the mind to temporarily slip into madness or lunacy." he muttered grumpily before storming up the dorm.
Sirius folded his arms and glared after him. "...sure seems to be effecting someone's mind."
James rolled his eyes. "The two of you are going to kill each other one of these days. Sit and write your bloody essay, Sirius."