Characters/pairings: Lily/James, Peter, Remus, Sirius
Word Count: ~2000
Summary: After Lily's terrible day, the Marauders decide to go to great lengths in order to cheer her up.
Author's notes: Thanks to ladyprongs. This fic was inspired by the song "If I Had A Million Dollars" by The Barenaked Ladies
She was sure that the woman staring at her from across the park thought she was homeless. Her clothes were tattered, her hair was a mess, she was covered in some sort magical grease Sirius was experimenting with, and she was wet from the rain. She knew she should be heading back to the flat, but she promised the boys she would give them a full hour to clean up their mess before she cursed all of them.
Living in a house with her husband and his three best friends seemed like a good idea at the time. That was before she became the maid, cook, mother, and legalized prostitute. She had never seen such filth in her entire life, and today was the last straw. It was her birthday tomorrow and all she wanted was a clean living space, so she was trying to give them the opportunity to remedy the situation without threats of additional appendages.
She looked up at the clock and saw she had gone five minutes over her allotted time. Keeping an eye on the woman that seemed to be looking around for a constable, probably assuming Lily was a dodgy ruffian trying to take up residence in the park since it was getting so late, she grabbed her cloak off the bench and headed home.
The street light outside their flat was blinking, making it seem that much more dingy and run down. She stood on the stoop of her home and started at the gray door with the pealing paint. She knew Dumbledore wanted them to stay out of sight, but couldn’t they have moved to a nice cottage out in the country, with spells to make it look like a pile of hay or a cow or something? All she wanted was a place for them all to grow old and raise children. Children… Lily rubbed her stomach and her eyes teared. How could she possibly even think of bringing a life into this world when everything around her was in complete disarray, not to mention the danger that surrounded them at every corner. She hadn’t been to a St. Mungo’s yet, but there was something different about this month.
She wiped her eyes and took a deep breath, and knew she had to go inside. She reached for the handle, closed her eyes and made one last wish and opened the door.
A cloud of black smoke and the smell of something burning crashed into Lily like a truck. She ran into the room, wand at the ready to put out whatever disaster had occurred and save her caring and trying boys. But her plan had one variable she had not considered. She had assumed the living room had been cleaned. She had assumed the pieces of Sirius’s bike she would have known to dodge on an ordinary day were no longer there. Lily crashed into a huge chunk of metal and went sprawling across the floor, her wand spinning and sending red sparks out the end.
“Wotcher Lily!” Sirius shouted from the kitchen.
Lily tossed her hair and tried to pick herself up, but hands were grabbing all over her, pulling her up and trying to help, but instead just making her slip more.
“Ow, would you quit that James? I am perfectly capable of standing up on my own.”
“Oh,” he released her and Lily scrambled up. “I was just trying to help. Are you hurt?” He rose with her, putting his arm around her waist and looking her over. Her knee was bleeding, but nothing seemed life threatening, except the rage building in her eyes.
Lily’s eyes left James face and looked over to the kitchen. Burnt brown and black masses were stuck to the walls, counters, floor, everywhere. Pots, pans, bowls, spoons, were strewn throughout the kitchen. She was pretty sure every dish she had ever owned was sitting on a counter, table, or sink covered in filth. Smoke was still billowing from the oven, where Remus and Sirius had finally found a use for Remus’s never ending stacks of newspapers and were fanning desperately. Peter came running around the corner of the hallway carrying a blanket with strange stains on it that smelled quite foul. They had always thought something had come to life in Peter’s room, due to the smell and the strange circles on any fabric that came out of there, and here was yet another exhibit for the jury.
“Lily, we’re so sorry. We had every intention of cleaning up, but James wanted to make you a muggle cake and we all tried to help, then Sirius decided to put something in it for color and the whole thing exploded.” Remus said, still waving frantically.
Sirius swatted him with the newspaper. “Some mate you are, putting all the blame on me. You were the one who said you knew how to bake a muggle cake and insisted she would love it. If you wouldn’t have made us go buy flowers maybe this wouldn’t have come out quite so…” But Sirius drifted off mid-sentence and everyone looked over at Lily, who was making a hissing noise like a tea kettle about to burst.
A single tear rolled down Lily’s cheek. “It was thoughtful,” she whispered, the boys falling silent and listening to her, hanging on her words. “It’s just that I wanted my house back. I wanted my living room, and my kitchen, and my glass top coffee table with the wedding pictures if they haven’t been covered in Sirius’s motor bike oil. I want to come in and see the walls and the floor, to breathe without wondering what that smell is, to open a cabinet and not see all my tea cups vanished to corners of the house, or to wander if this dish is actually clean. I don’t want to live in this dingy shack, I feel like a troll under a bridge in this place, or Cinderella always cleaning and ruining everybody else’s fun by trying to get you all to help out around here. I want a home with clean air and a view. I… I…” Lily covered her face and started to sob.
James reached around her and pulled her close, kissing her dirty cheek. He looked over at Sirius and motioned with his head. Sirius nodded and motioned to Remus and Peter. They started to move around the kitchen. James let go of Lily and took her face in his hands.
“If I had a million galleons, I would buy you a house.” James said.
“We’d buy you a house,” Sirius retorted behind him. James shot him and look, and then they smiled.
“If I had a million galleons,” Sirius said, “I’d buy you furniture for your house.”
“Maybe a nice chesterfield or an ottoman,” Remus chimed in from behind the counter where he was digging in the cabinet.
“If I had a million galleons, I’d buy you a K-Car!” Peter added, jumping a little from his own excitement.
Sirius raised an eyebrow and looked at him, “A nice, reliant Automobile?”
“If I had a million galleons,” James jumped in, trying to ease the tension, then looked around at his best mates. Remus’s headed popped up from behind the counter grinning, Peter walked around the island in full view of James, and Sirius winked.
“We’d buy your love,” they shouted in unison.
Lily blinked. She continued to stare at James, unamused. James laughed a little nervously then dragged her over to the kitchen table and pulled out a chair, motioning for her to sit.
“If I had a million galleons,” James started.
“If we had a million galleons,” Sirius replied, stressing the we.
“I’d build a tree fort in our yard, and you could help,” he looked over at Remus and Sirius. “It wouldn’t be that hard.”
“Maybe we could put a little tiny fridge in there somewhere,” Remus said.
“We could just go up there and hang out,” James said.
“And do what? Like open the fridge and stuff?” Lily said.
“There’d always be food laid out for us up there, of course.” Sirius retorted. “Like little pre-wrapped sausages and things.”
“They have pre-wrapped sausage but they don’t have pre-wrappedbacon,” Peter whined.
“Do you blame them?” Remus asked, turning to stare at him.
“Um, yeah.” Peter replied.
“Okay, okay,” James said, swinging his arms around trying to stop the bickering and draw attention back to him. “If I had a million galleons, I’d buy you a fur coat.”
“But not a real fur coat!” Sirius yelled.
“That’s cruel.” Remus added, giving James a look.
James dragged her chair in the middle of the floor, and began to do a silly dance in front of her. He waved his hands and moved to a beat that only he knew or could hear, and Lily couldn’t help but cover her mouth to hide a smile at his disgusting attempt at dancing.
Sirius walked over and began to match James strange gyrations in front of Lily. While looking over James’ shoulder, he winked at Lily. “If I had a million galleons, I’d buy you an exotic pet.”
“Maybe like a llama or an emu,” Peter added, running over and starting to dance.
Remus remained by the counter, staring at them as though he wasn’t going to get involved in their shenanigans. “If I had a million galleons, I’d buy John Merrick's remains.”
“Those crazy elephant bones?” Lily asked, giggling.
“If we had a million galleons,” James said, stopping his dance and taking a knee in front of Lily, the other Marauders following suit.
“We’d buy your love.” They shouted together.
“If we had a million galleons,” Lily started, “we wouldn’t have to walk to the store.”
“If we had a million galleons, we’d take a limousine cause it costs more.” Sirius said.
“If we had a million galleons we wouldn’t have to eat Kraft dinner.” Lily said, jumping up from the chair and clapping.
“But we would eat Kraft dinner.” James said, staring at her indignantly.
“Of course, we’d just eat more.” Sirius replied standing.
“And buy really expensive ketchups,” Remus said.
“Like fancy, Dijon ketchups?” Peter said softly. Remus and the boys all looked over at Peter for a moment, rolling their eyes.
James looked over at Sirius then took Lily’s hand twirling her around and around the kitchen. She spun past Remus and Peter, who continued to kneel and watch, with Sirius chasing behind them.
“Let me, let me!” he shouted, and James passed her hand off to him and Sirius spun around the kitchen, both of them giggling maniacally. Sirius let her go and watched her spin off into the kitchen like a top. James ran after her and grabbed her around the waist. He smiled and looked into her eyes, no longer filled with rage.
“If I had a million galleons I would buy you a green dress.”
“But not a real green dress!” Sirius shouted, laughing.
“That’s cruel,” Remus said, stepping past Sirius into the kitchen. “If I had a million galleons I’d buy you some art.”
“Like a Pick-casso or a Grafunkle?” Peter asked from behind Sirius.
“How thick are you Wormtail?” Sirius said, hitting him on the shoulder.
“Fine, since some of us don’t really appreciate art,” Remus looked at Peter. “And we wouldn’t want it getting destroyed, if I had a million galleons, I’d buy you a monkey.” Remus turned and smiled at Sirius. He flicked his wand and Sirius shrunk leaving his clothes lying in a pile and a monkey standing on top, screaming.
Everyone roared with laughter, except Sirius naturally who continued to scream and jump around, running at Remus’s leg and trying to bite him. James took his wand and changed Sirius back. Although Sirius was back to normal, his clothes still lay strewn on the floor.
“Wanker!” he shouted and dove for the tea towel next to Remus, trying desperately to cover himself up and keep some dignity as he gathered his clothes and walked out of the kitchen, looking over his shoulder as he left to shoot one last glare at the still giggling Remus.
“She said she always wanted a monkey!” James shouted after him.
They all paused catching their breath for a moment, and James looked over at Lily, grinning from ear to ear and holding her stomach from laughing so hard.
“If we had a million galleons,” James looked at Remus and Peter. “One more time!” he shouted.
Together, and with a muffled Sirius voice in the background, they all shouted “We’d buy your love!”
“If we had a million galleons!” Remus said, moving towards Lily and spinning her around once and dipping her low.
“If we had a million galleons!” James pulled her close and kissed her with more fervor than he had before.
“If we had a million galleons!” Sirius shouted as he burst back into the room and started to dance about.
“If we had a million galleons!” Peter shouted before attempting to break dance and skidding into the counter, banging his head hard and sending a pile of pots onto his head.
Lily let go of James and went back to her chair. She sat down and looked out over the mess and her friends, no, her family, standing there staring at her. They had gone to a great deal of trouble to try and make her day special, and then to a greater effort to try and cheer her up. All of the mess, all of the work, all of the worry was worth it for moments like these. None of that other stuff really mattered.
“If we had a million galleons,” Lily looked up at her family, knowing that she had more now than she would ever have need for in her life. “We’d just be rich.”