The Marauders

Those who are familiar with the Harry Potter books should be familiar with the amazing group of friends we call the Marauders.
Follow Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Pronges in the unpredictable years they spent at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry---

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1. Hogwarts Express 1971

   The train wrenched into a sudden movement beneath James Potter's feet, jarring him slightly unbalanced as the scream of the train whistle rung out its high pitched note somewhere outside, the sound becoming much more clear as all the mumbles and shouts of conversing students were being hidden away behind the doors of the many compartments lining themselves down the right side of the isle. Quite suddenly, within seconds James found himself as one of the only students in sight, the new challenge of trying to bud into a compartment standing before him. Through his smudged, round glasses he was able to view through the slide-door windows for the closest compartments to him, revealing all the old, cushioned benches to be filled with students to the breaking point, all with their sweaters, ties and robes dressed in the colour of the house they had been sorted into, their wands flashing out elaborate displays of advanced spells, enjoying the sudden freedom to preform magic legally under-aged. These students were obviously older than him, and he hadn't been taught any educate, but he knew that he probably shouldn't just shove into a seat, at least not on his first day. He would just simply have to search a while for a place to sit that was more suitable, quieter, with more close-matched peers.

   As if things couldn't become more quiet, the train doors began to slam shut, blocking out the train whistle, the increasing chugging of the engine and the calling farewells of parents still on the platform. James was expecting to be left in a muffled silence soon, but while all the doors near him shut, one just behind him didn't meet the opposite door jamb. James turned to see what the commotion was, for a voice could be heard, sounding as if it were having an epic battle with the magical door. Becoming slightly concerned and curious, about to make himself to step back around the corner to see, finally the voice belted out a mighty, "Aha!" and a figure fell into view just inside the door. A triumphant smile shined through the messed up, windswept hair that looked quite similar to James's at the moment. But as this boy caught his breath, brought himself to his feet and easily swept his hand up through his hair, it so easily calmed the strands to a perfect flow, something so opposite of the mess atop James's head.

   "All right, mate?" James laughed, making the educated guess that this boy had been quite late for the train, not too far off from when James had managed to board. This new boy was obviously his age, a first-year, for his robes too were a plain black, not draped in any house colours yet.

   "Oh yeah," said the boy, catching sight of James and striding forth with the same proud, handsome smile, "Now I am, but if my mum would had stopped barking last minute instructions in my ear I wouldn't have had to engage in a war with the damn door."

   James couldn't help but laugh out loud at his words. "She must had forgotten the time that the train leaved then, eh?"

   "Yes, and another minor detail being what the hell to do once we are actually on the train," he said rather aggressively, but she smile on his face showed he meant no offence as he spoke loudly to the narrow hallway in general.

   "Find a seat, I suppose?" James suggested, looking off down the hall again through the nearest windows.

   "Yeah, yeah..." the boy said, now half paying attention as he payed mind to putting his crooked robes back in order.

   "If there is one bloody compartment with a square inch to spare..." James sighed as he strutted forth, hands deep in the huge pockets of his robes. As he took the first steps down the hall, he was happy to notice the boy following behind him followed for some reason. The boy was alright, he supposed. Had a good sense of humour. Should make for a good first friend.

   "So!" the boy spoke up too suddenly as they had made there way halfway down the train car, passing about a dozen full compartments on the way. James jumped at the sudden shout coming rather unexpectedly somewhere near his right ear, faltering in his steps slightly, causing the boy to step harshly on his heels. But he didn't mutter an apology as he continued on with what he was saying, "In the sake of formality," he drawled the word, giving that he had no real interest in the term, perhaps just another kind of order his mother had been feeding him before he left home school, nevertheless, it brought a grin to James face as he turned his head slightly back to listen to him as they continued walking, "we outta not miss introductions... So whats you name?"

   "James Potter," he said simply, pulling his brand-new robes up over his shoulders in a more sharp position, acting smug. The boy found it amusing, because their grins looked identical as he opened his mouth to reply in a half-hearted, sarcastic reply.

   "Woow, what a unique name." he mocked.

   "Then what might your name be?" James countered, hoping for some funny name that he could easily mock in return.

   "Sirius black." He too grabbed the fronts of his robes in a similar way that James had, but instead flung the draping fabric towards either shoulder, making him briefly look like a dark butterfly, clearly doing it to make fun of James, but to anyone watching in one of the compartments that they passed, Sirius would had looked like a massive idiot.

   "Astonishing!" James piped up in his own turn of mocking defence, "Is that seriously your name?" he cracked the pun.

   "Ha ha..." Sirius laughed along, sounding mildly unimpressed, probably having heard that same joke many times before, "Its not spelled how you think it is, its actually the name of the brightest star in the sky... That or my dads just been telling me loads of bollocks, trying to cover up for such a stupid name."

   "Then lets just say you're a star, because I don't wanna be dragged into a massively serious friendship right off the get-go..." James became carried away, laughing at his own joke.

   "Buggar off, will you?" Sirius half laughed with him, yanking on the shoulder of his robes and hauling him to a stop, "and get your but in this compartment, this is the calmest one we will find, I'll bet."

   "How much?" James asked as he stepped up to find the handle to the door.

   "We will discuss gambling later, just get the door open first at least."

 Sirius was right, it was a very calm compartment, at least it was before they entered. Finally managing to slide the door open by basically having to kick it into movement, they stumbled in, Sirius muttering, "Took you long enough."

   "You should had done it then, you have already proven to be the master at opening doors," James said when they shut the door behind them, properly noticing the girl that sat alone by the window. Her long, waving red hair shifted away from her face as she turned her head away from the glass to look up at them briefly, her irises catching everyone attention with their brilliant green, while the reddened whites of her eyes made the colour appear more striking. She looked immediately away once she made eye contact with the two without a word, returning her gaze out to the fast passing country outside, her posture hunched a little further away from the rest of the room. James and Sirius got the message and sat down opposite each other closest the door, not bothering the girl any further.

   There was a silence where the two just looked at each other, the darkest brown into a pale grey, the look in them saying that they were mutually feeling this obligation to break the silence that they sunk into at the sight of the stranger girl. James beat Sirius to it.

   "So!" he bursts out, in a deep, hearty voice, as if impersonating a heavy-set business man bustling along in a happy mood, "Fine day, wouldn't you say, Mr Black?" his formality made Sirius grin as he too joined in on the game.

   "Exquisite! Absolutely divine. Could not picture a better day to run through a solid wall for the first time!"

   "I know, right?" James laughed, quickly breaking from his impersonation, "Just out of the blue be told to defy any kind of Muggle physics we knew."

   "Ha, exactly, it could had been at least a side note on the journey to the station..."

   While the two boys were bickering and relating to the phenomenal experience of just getting onto the proper, magical platform, the entrance of another boy was the only thing that caught their attention from the conversation. The door slid open with a small click to end it, much more smoother than how James and Sirius had managed with the contraption. However, what stood in the doorway didn't match the slick entrance. Pale and thin, his robes barely fitting his long, slender limbs. He looked at them for a quick moment with black eyes that were sunken with the dark rings of deprived sleep, all sealed with two curtains of hair, long and black like Sirius's, but lacking the soft, clean look that made Sirius's hair ten times more attractive than this new boys greasy strands. A first-year as well, obvious to the simplest trick of just checking the colours that his robes lacked. But of all he had on was a simple striped scarf of any set of house colours, they could had easily mistaken him for a third-year. Though they were sitting down, he seemed a head taller than both of them, and the still-plump cheeks of the young age of eleven were gone, a gaping shadow from his cheekbones took its place.

   It was sold that he was definitely a first-year when he avoided both their gazes as soon as he met them and stooped shyly into the compartment and sat opposite the girl, who had not yet thrown him a glance. Despite her complete lack of interest in his presence, even worse than the acknowledgement she had given James and Sirius, he sat there leaned forward with his elbows on his knees and hands laced together in between, looking at her intently, a small, loving smile creeping on his lips.

   James and Sirius couldn't both help but notice  

   The two of them pretended not to stare, so instead engaged back into a meaningless conversation, speaking meaningless words in any sort to cover up as they eavesdropped on the conversation that was about to sprout between the black-haired boy and the red-haired girl.

   He sat down across from her, leaning forth intently with smiling, black eyes staring at her. She must had noticed his presence through her own cocoon and peered out through her crimson strands, revealing her young, freckled face for the first time since James and Sirius had entered. The two first-years obviously knew each other well, or at least better than how James and Sirius did, but the look she gave her supposed friend was even more grim and upsetting than the one she had delivered to the two newest friends. But just as quickly as her face appeared, it disappeared again, her reddened face blending in nicely with her hair.

   "I don't want to talk to you," croaked a choked up voice from within the layer of red hair.

   "Why not?" said the boy, sounding much too happy considering his friend seemed mad at him.

   "Tuney h-hates me," she said once more, raising a hand up through where her face was and rubbing her eyes,      "Because we saw that letter from Dumbledore."

   "So what?" chimed the boy once more, still trying to find what was so bad about what she was saying.

   Suddenly the hand that was rubbing her eye appeared through her hair and parted it away from her face, like shoving a curtain aside from a window, and gave him the most angry look. As James and Sirius secretly witnessed this while they talked something about Diagon Alley, they prayed for this black-haired boys life.

   "So shes my sister!" she countered.

   "She's only a-" the boy cut himself off mid-sentence. James and Sirius, not knowing the situation well enough, couldn't tell what the word was that would describe this girls sister, but it was easy to tell it was a bad one. But the red-headed girl didn't notice. She was too busy wiping the tears from her eyes once more, trying to regain a dignified look now that her face was fully exposed.

   "But we're going!" he recovered, his voice so full of joy that there was enough to fill the girl up as well with excitement. And it seemed to work, for she broke a feeble smile, "This is it! We're off to Hogwarts!"

   She nodded, mopping the rest of her tears away and struggling to maintain the wobbling smile that was fighting against the still-existing sadness that ruled the muscles in her face.

   "You'd better be in Slytherin," she boy said, sitting back in his seat a little more relaxed now that he had convinced his friend to stop blaming him for all her grief and tried to engage in some friendly conversation. But James couldn't let that happen, for his tongue burst free from the slurred words he spoke to Sirius and jumped on the topic that most interested him about the conversation he had been listening in on.

   "Slytherin?" he burst, a slight smile of disbelief fixed on his face. Both the girl and her dark haired friend looked at him in slight shock, as if they had forgotten that he was here, let alone had heard their entire conversation. "Who wants to be in Slytherin? I think I'd leave, wouldn't you?" James turned to look to his companion for reassurance. But this time, the handsome smile failed to appear on his young face.

   "My whole family have been in Slytherin," Sirius explained.

   "Blimey!" James exclaimed, feeling a little bad for being too open about his opinion, "And I thought you were all right!"

   Sirius seemed to understand that James meant no harm, and broke a grin. "Maybe I'll break the tradition. Where are you heading if you've got the choice?"

Suddenly and dramatically, James lifted his arm as if holding an invisible sword and said, "Gryffindor! Where dwell the brave at heart! Like my dad."

   There was a small snort of laughter from the corner and everyone looked to see the dark-haired boy with an amused sneer on his face.

   "Got a problem?" James said.

   "No," he replied, but the mocking smile said otherwise, "If you'd rather be brawny than brainy-"

   "Where're you hoping to go, seeing as you're neither," Sirius interjected, standing up for James before the dark haired boy even got a chance to make any sort of offense.

   James found it brilliant, for he roared with laughter, but the girl found it quite the opposite. For the first time in the small quarrel, she made her own mark by standing up, hands on her hips and narrowing her eyes into green slits at both James and Sirius.

   "Come on, Severus, Lets find a different compartment."

   "Oooo," James and Sirius cooed, laughing at her sudden strong voice. But James wasn't sure if he was laughing harder at the boys name, who he tried tripping on his way out. He had heard his fair share of strange names, but Severus was the tops.

    "See ya, Snivellus!" James mocked at his last chance just before the compartment door shut. It was only the first word that came to mind that seemed to rhyme with Severus, and didn't even make sense, but it sure made Sirius laugh, so James took it as a perfect insult for the strange boy.

 

   "Snivellus?"  Sirius barked once he regained his breath, "What is that supposed to mean?"

   James shrugged. "I don't know, but it suits him, don't you think?"

   "Absolutely." Sirius raised his hands up to indicate that he never once doubted it. They lowered when he had to use them to mop the tears that was building in his eyes. He took a heavy sigh to calm himself.

   "So what do you reckon exactly it was they were fighting about?" James asked, turning suddenly serious compared to the way they were just a minute ago.

    Sirius had to sit and consider this for a moment, "Something about her sister?"

   "And even something to do with Dumbledore." James sounded quite puzzled by this too.

   "Probably one of those younger siblings that are livid at the thought that their sister gets to go to Hogwarts first and they have to wait," Sirius considered, sounding rather certain as he sat back in his spot, "You should had heard my brother the morning my Hogwarts letter arrived. He almost killed the bloody owl, angry, thinking it forgot his." A smirk appeared on his face as he retold the tale.

    "Sounds lovely to have siblings. But this reminds me, I was gonna ask what house you wanted to be in. You didn't sound too impressed when saying your whole family had been in Slytherin." James got comfortable, looking interested to find out.

    "Well Gryffindor, of course. I'm not stupid. Any great wizard there was was from Gryffindor."

    "Glad we can agree on that. I couldn't imagine being in any other house."

    "Well Ravenclaw doesn't sound half bad," Sirius considered.

    "Yeah, but in what case would you consider the pair of us smart enough to do well there?" James laughed, but then realized that it was a little rude to had indirectly assumed Sirius wasn't the smartest and added a quick, "Sorry."

    "Nah, mate. You're absolutely right." Sirius smiled as well as he looked out towards the window, open valley now rushing by, the rolling, green hills of Scotland seeming more beautiful than ever in the colder, misty day.

    "Ill bet we'll both be in Gryffindor," James dared.

    Sirius turned his head away and looked at James with a mischievous smile, "Again with the betting! Are we gonna put money into this?"

    James returned the smile, feeling in his pockets for the galleons he had taken with him. He was about to start naming prices but then caught the faint call of a woman's voice somewhere out in the corridor and knew what it meant. His father did manage to tell him that.

    "We decide that after the trolly lady comes. I reckon you've heard of her?"

    "Oh, of course!" Sirius boomed jumping to reach for the gold in his own pockets for the occasion. "She should be making her rounds soon, I bet."

    "So then the remains of our pocket money go to the bet. I give you all of it if you end up in Slytherin, because honestly, mate I would feel bad for you."

    Sirius smiled, liking the idea. "And if we're both in Gryffindor?"

    "Hmmm... You give me a sickle. Just because I told you so."

    "You've got yourself a deal," Sirius laughed, shaking James hand, "But should we make some rules in the occasion that you end up in Hufflepuff?"

   James yanked his hand away, slightly offended, but at the same time finding the feeling humorous, "Yeah, right," he barked, pulling out his money and counting it in his palm, "Don't even speak those words again," he joked.    

"How much do you have left?" Sirius asked, trying to pry open a box of every flavoured beans. 

   "Nothing," James smiled a proud smile, mouth packed like a chipmunks with candy.

   "Nothing?" Sirius gasped, looking at James with wide eyes, "How much did you get?"

   "Did you not witness me buy it, mate?" James said, forcefully swallowing the mound of candy so he could speak clearly, "The loot is just right here, see, if you wanna do the math."

   "Okay, okay. But how do you plan to meet your deal of the bet?" Sirius questioned, not finding it as entertaining as James was.

   His friend shrugged in return, reaching for a random object in his pile of sweets, half of which were only wrappers and casings now. "Dunno. I suppose that means you'll have to be in Gryffindor now."

   Sirius's face relaxed with realization, smiling in understanding. "Smart, James. Real smart. You should be in Ravenclaw."

   "And that would mean that I wouldn't get that sickle we agreed on." He began to bite at a pumpkin pasty. At this moment, several students, who looked to be in their third year jumped by there compartment, seeming to be chasing some sort of sparking orb that raced by. It happened quickly, and James and Sirius only managed to get a glance before all that could be known of them were their shouting voices.

   Sirius didn't take James little scheme in a bad way, because really he didn't expect much money in the first place, and didn't want it if it meant him being in Slytherin. Instead he just turned his attention to his box of every flavoured beans, trying to pry open the sealed lid with his fingernails.

   "Damnit!" he cursed after what seemed like the tenth failed attempt.

   "Are you even sure you should be eating those?" James said, looking at Sirius as he leaned his upper body against the wall next to the door, propping his feet up on the remaining seating and moving the rest of his candy up onto his lap. Sirius's sitting position mirrored his, except his back leaned against the window. "I can guarantee you the ninety percent of those beans are not going to have a pleasant taste."

   "Hmm." Sirius held the box up and thought for a moment, "I suppose this could be a good moment to try..." His other hand pulled out a slick, dark wand.

   "Whoa." James sat up quickly, knock several of the candy, or just the casings he had left empty, on the floor. He held out a hand, indicating Sirius to wait a moment, "You wanna try magic?" His voice was caught between worry and excitement.

   "I was thinking about it." There were hopeful, excited smiles on both there faces. "I mean, whats the worst that could happen? I don't think an eleven-year-old could kill somebody without even trying."

   "Very true...." James nodded, turning his body and so his feet touched the floor again, trying his best to push his candy back on the seat without looking away from Sirius's wand. "But do you even know any spell. Like, any that would help in this situation?"

   "What, to open something?" Sirius thought for a second, then suddenly lifted his wand, eyes gleaming with an animated happiness. James didn't question it, he too just leaned forward to observe what would happen.

   The tip of the wand aimed at the box in the palm of his, only inches away at a strange angle, he twirled it in a strange, over-enthusiastic movement, all while yelling, "Alohomora!"

   The spell didn't completely fail, just didn't work in the way they had hoped. The box remained still and still sealed shut in Sirius's hand, but while they were staring at it excitedly to watch it open, they were nearly scared half to death as the compartment door slid open at a monumental speed, hitting the stopping door jam with a horrible crack, and the glass in the small frame of the door shattering into a million pieces.

   Strangely, it was the last thing they were expecting. The box of every flavoured beans fell to the floor as it was flung from Sirius's hand when he and James tensed themselves into a terrified, panicked position, remaining that way as they were both caught at what to do next.

   Conveniently, the train began to jar itself into a brake, causing the door to slide back through the glass back into its original place.

   "Bloody hell! We're here! Grab everything and run before everyone comes out and sees!" James strained his voice to stay somewhat quiet as he jumped up and began shoving as many sweets as he could into his pockets. Sirius did the same, but first hid the wand that was responsible for the crime back into his robes.

   The two of them hoped over the glass and hurriedly walked down the corridor the best they could without stumbling at the shifting gravity of the braking train. They were one of the first people out, and were thankful for it, because by the time they got to on of the exit door, the same on Sirius had fought to enter, anyone who entered the corridor after wouldn't really be able to tell who had destroyed the window.

   "You think this could be a good time to try a repairing charm I think I know?" he whispered in his ear, a slight giggle present. James couldn't help but break a smile.

   "You'd end up binding two people together."

   The train suddenly wrenched to a final stop, and the voices of the gathered crowed wooed at the feeling of shift beneath their feet. The doors remained closed however, and as the many cases of casual conversation all around them resumed, it was easy to notice a loud shout with the engine finally off.

   "Excuse me!" called a female voice, anyone in range turned only to be forced to stand aside as a girl pushed through everyone who waited idly. "Excuse me! I am a prefect!"

   This girl passed James and Sirius last who stood right at the door. They must had barely been enough of this girl notice, for she walked right in between them and grabbed hold of the handle of the door like it was the first prize to an exhausting race. James and Sirius looked at each other confused, with a tight smile as if they were trying not to laugh seeing the girl. She huffed in a puff of something between relief and exhaustion, her brow beading with sweat from stress. This girl most certainly was a prefect, if she wasn't it she obviously wouldn't had gotten what she deserved. Her uniform was in perfect condition with her Gryffindor coloured tie tightened so well around her collar that one would think that she was huffing because it was choking her. She was the definition of formal, maybe a little bit beyond. In a way they felt a little bad for her, deep down, but seeing this girl drowned in her sliver of authority triggered something humorous.

   This prefect only had a split second to catch her breath, for then the whistle of the train sounded which must had been some kind of signal to her, because she leaped into action, twisting a handle on the door swiftly and letting the door swing open. She leaped out first before anyone had the chance to get ahead of her, only to cling to the door and hold it open for everyone to exit. James and Sirius witnessed her force a smile on her face as she allowed everyone to exit onto the platform.

   It was an amazing moment that neither James or Sirius took the time to appreciate, for either they subconsciously considering the pile of shattered glass they had left in the highway, or observing the behaviour of the extremely dedicated prefect. But when their feet touched down on smooth, cool platform they were absorbed into the sunset setting of an almost remote-seeming location, massing students moving around them, some moving towards a trail that lead off from the platform through the forest, others standing around idly like James and Sirius, wondering what they should be doing.

   James pulled a licuorice wand from his pocket and was about to take a bite from it when him and Sirius caught sight of the castle in the distance mutually. It wasn't a great view, for it was just the distant image of one of its tallest towers peeking over the treetops that lined the skies around the station.

   "Thats gotta be a big castle," James commented in a sort of awe with the piece of licuorice wand in his mouth half-bite.

   The two were startled back into the chaos of the mass of students by a booming voice from right behind them, at first they thought the words were delivered to them in an angry way, maybe they had been discovered as the ones guilty of the broken window. The sight they turned to see wasn't exactly reassuring, but the voice was not meant for them. The huge man who the deep, burly voice belonged to was shouting across the crowd in general, how unlucky they were to be standing right there to withstand the deafening voice, like someone blaring a whistle in your ear out of nowhere.

   "Firs’-years this way!" he said. James and Sirius had to look right up and squint slightly through the growing darkness to see the small portion of face peering through the mess of dark, shaggy hair and beard. At first they were shocked to think that this was the person they supposedly had to follow. It was a yeti! A giant! Or... not quite. After calling out the summon to the first-year students a few times, the huge man stopped and lifted the lantern clutched in his vast hand, bringing a much more friendly light to his face. It revealed the mans rosy cheeks scrunched up into an obvious grin, two dark, sparkling eyes smiling down at them. The figure was a combination of the scariest, yet the friendliest looking person you could ever meet.

   “Firs-years, are ya?” he slurred his words slightly, speaking conversationally to James and Sirius.

   “That’s right,” Sirius replied, sounding a bit shy in the grand figure of the giant man.

   “Well, yer in the right place! I’ll be the one takin’ you to the castle for the firs’ time!” he beamed, “Yer excited?”

   “Absolutely,” James smiled up at him, immediately beginning to like the man who they would soon learn to be the game keeper of Hogwarts.

   “Brilliant!” he exclaimed, “All we have got to do is wait for the rest of em to round up here, and then we’re off!”

   And that did not take long at all. It was next to impossible to miss the man towering at least five feet over the tallest of seventh-year kids that were making their way with the flow of older students who were heading for a trail off of the platform. The crowd thinned quickly considering there being probably around one thousand students, and eventually, besides the average group of stragglers, it was only the huddled group of new first years crowded unsure around the burly man. They were ready to go.

   “All righ’, then!” the towering man beamed, “I’ll be the one escorting you to the castle this fine evening. My name is Rubeus Hagrid. But you can call me Hagrid. I am the gamekeeper here at hogwarts. Now, without further ado, if you could be so kind as to follow me now.”

   Hagrid had spoke very clearly and slowly as the rather untidy man did his best to present a formal introduction. It came off rather awkward, but anyone could tell that he wasn’t the kind of person to be well spoken. But his intentions were nothing but good.

   Everyone scurried after Hagrid to keep up with his long strides. He turned around to lead down a different pathway from the one that the rest of the students took. And unlike it, this one was much more narrow and dark compared to how the other one appeared. The thick forest and vegetation on either side of them tangled itself up into a canopy above their heads, depriving them of almost any light that the night sky could offer.

   There wasn’t much talking. Only the occasional whisper or quiet comment between friends, but for the most part, people were beginning to wonder if this dank path could possibly be the way to the grand castle of Hogwarts.

Suspicions were rising, and James was beginning the process of plucking up the small amount of courage he needed to ask the giant Hagrid where exactly they were going. But he was cut short when Hagrid’s booming voice erupted again over the heads of them all, calling over his shoulder to say, “It jus’ up here!”

   An eagerness pressed over the crowd as everyone subtly pushed themselves forth a little to try and peer past Hagrid’s wide figure that took up almost the whole path, trying to glimpse what lay ahead of the trail.

Quite suddenly, the path opened up wide, and everyone spilled out onto the beach of a vast, black lake, its pristine surface reflecting the first stars of the night appearing on the quickly blackening sky above. And that wasn’t all. It also reflected a magnificent structure that clung to a small mountain overlooking the body of water. Everyone looked up to view the castle with a gasp of awe. Countless towers spiked up to reach at the air from it harbour on the beautiful grassy hill along with even more golden flickering light escaping the little windows all around. Even from such a distance away, everyone could easily admire the outstanding architecture of the structure. It truly was something that could not exist without magic.

   Hagrid had to eventually pull everyone from their awe to help them notice the small fleet of boats resting at the shore, awaiting them patiently to board.

   “All righ’ everyone. Board a boat. No more than four.”

   James and Sirius sort of galloped across the stoney beach to be the first to the boats. They took the closest one, jumping up onto its deck to clamber to the front seats up against a tall figurehead sticking up at the front. Despite their reckless movements, surprisingly, the boat wobbled very little beneath them.

   The two boys impatiently waited in their spots while more hesitant students neared the boats. Eventually, two other boys decided to board the boat that they were in. One short and plump with blonde hair, and the other a quite opposite figure, being lengthy, thin and with a dusty coloured, brown hair. However James and Sirius paid little mind to them, they were too busy watching Hagrid finally board the boat next to them, for they knew he would be the one to announce their departure.

   “Everyone ‘ere? All righ’, off we go!”

   Suddenly, the boats all jarred out from their places, magically sailing out into the direction of the castle, all falling in behind Hagrid’s boat which lead the way. Everyone sat patiently in their boats as they watched the castle slowly become bigger and bigger before them. All except James and Sirius of course. It got boring for them within a few minutes of the ride, and James felt the need to take his wand out and practice some more magic.

   “You’re gonna end up destroying something again...” Sirius unenthusiastically warned from where he was slumped on the side of the boat, idly streaming his fingers into the water.

   “Perfect, I could use a swim,” James laughed, “I’ve got a different spell this time.”

Sirius glanced up from where he was looking to glare at James slightly interested. “What this time?” he asked while scooting over slightly closer to his new friend.

   “Watch and learn...” James said smugly, straightening his posture and clearing his throat as he lifted his wand, beginning to swirl it very carefully as he began to say, “Wingardium Leviosa!” he flicked his wand with determination and everyone was very surprised to feel the front end of the boat lift out of the water a little bit, but only to drop immediately back down with a little splash.

   “Bloody hell!” Sirius laughed, punching James on the shoulder with encouragement, “You did it...”

A little too proud of himself, James did it again and again, singing the spell out over and over again until the boats front end was lifting and falling so frequently that the boat began to rock. Everyone seemed to be enjoying the excitement. Even the plump boy sitting behind Sirius was giggling. But it was all put to a stop, however, to everyone’s surprise, by the scrawny boy sitting in the back corner. He muttered the exact same spell very subtly, performing it so well that James wand lifted out of his hand suddenly, floating up into the air gracefully as it sailed lightly back down into James robe pocket.

   Everyone stopped and stared at the boy in awe as he sat there comfortably in his seat, obviously hiding his immense pride at the win.

   “Remus!” the plump boy shot at him in a whisper, seeming embarrassed at his friends actions.

   “Touche, mate. But why stop the fun!” James blurted out.

   “That wasn’t fun, that was nauseating!” he spoke back to him, looking at James with a tilted stare, sneaking a small, light smile to show he was all good willed, “Besides, we are almost there... Look!” he nodded his head in the direction ahead. Everyone turned their attention away from him to look up at the castle that towered right over their heads now. The boast slipped beneath its boundaries and into a hidden harbour underneath, leading them towards a great set of oak doors at the shore within. Everyone knew what must lay inside.

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