kristin (layered) wrote in hateloveletters,

Chapter One: The Potions Incident

"What's going on?" It was a question that Remus never felt quite safe asking, especially considering his group of friends. He sunk into a seat between Sirius and Peter, setting his bag on the floor. The Potions classroom was slowly filling, Gryffindors and Slytherins filing in. Their instructor, Professor Utonium stood at the front of the classroom, studying her notes in preparation for the day's lesson.

"Ask me no questions, and I shall tell you no lies, mate," intoned Sirius very solemnly, nodding a bit and then breaking into nothing short of a full-fledged giggle fit, sharing a look with James. Remus groaned a bit, reaching for his text book and opening it. Maybe if he just pretended that they weren't doing anything wrong and possibly dangerous, they wouldn't be.

Doodled on Remus' note paper before class.

"We'll begin by pairing up for the day's lab assignment," the professor began, and there seemed to be a collective groan. Lab work was never fun, and Professor Utonium had the uncanny knack for pairing each student with whomever he or she would least like to work with for a double period. She flicked her wand toward the board, where the day's lab parter assignments appeared. "You will be concocting the Wit-Sharpening Potion. Begin."

"Rabastan Lestrange," Sirius groaned, pushing himself up to a standing position. "Not on. Jamesy, you're with Narcissa? Oy, you have fun there, mate. We'll make sure you have a pleasant funeral. And Pete, you're with Shacklebolt. That's good, at least you'll have at least half a brain between you. Remus-" he broke off, seeing his friend's name on the board. He gulped, almost comically.

Remus lifted his head, at the same time as there was a disgusted sniff from the back corner of the room. "Severus Snape."

On Severus Snape's Potions text, in the upper corner of page 213.

Remus glanced over his shoulder, where the Slytherin boy sat, glaring at his group of friends so hard that he thought Sirius' head should be exploding any minute now. "Lovely." He stood up in the most dignified manner he could muster, slung his bag over his shoulder, and approached Severus' seat, with an attempt at a friendly smile. "Afternoon!" he chirped, a bit too pleasantly; it came out sounding forced, almost panicked. Severus just sniffed again.

"Right then," the Slytherin said after a long moment. "Let's just get started on this. Between the two of us, we should finish quite quickly." Remus was still trying to decide whether that was a compliment or not, getting right to work; a few minutes passed, punctuated with chatter and talking from the other groups around them. Severus and Remus, though, worked in near-silence.

Severus was adding one of the final ingredients when something horrible happened; the cauldron exploded, sending a few sparks, a lot of chemicals, and a white mushroom-cloud of fine white powder into the air. Remus, on the other side of the table, managed to escape most of it; Severus, on the other hand, was nearly covered in the pale grey mixture.

There was a chorus of laughter, originating from a few different places in the room; Sirius and James were the first to laugh. Remus bit his lower lip.

"What?" Professor Utonium managed to sputter, walking down the aisle between the desks and stopping in front of Severus. "What is this?" she reached out, running her finger along the edge of the table; she sniffed at it, then touched her tongue to the traces of white powder. "Flour?!" she was incredulous. "Which one of you mixed flour in with your potion?"

Both boys shook their heads, simultaneously, Severus dripping potions from his far-greasier hair. Remus glanced over the Professor's shoulder, though; Sirius caught his eye, and winked.

Passed to Severus on the Slytherin's way out of the classroom.

Scribbled on one of Remus' bits of parchment, then shoved into a pocket.

Thrown quite hard at Remus from behind a stack of books in the library.

Doodled on the edge of one of Severus' essays.

Slipped underneath the stall door to Severus in the third-floor boy's toilet.

From Remus' note paper, during Defense Against the Dark Arts.

"Dropped" to Remus from the staircase three floors above him.

Charmed to fly directly into Severus' ear during Herbology.

Passed back most discreetly.

Finally, thrown back and forth in the corridors on the way to dinner.

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