Harry Potter, Painting By Numbers

Title: Painting By Numbers [Lily, Sirius]
Rating/Warnings: PG
Summary: Lily takes great delight in making Sirius do things the Muggle way.
AN: Written for the 24-Hour Ficathon. Caitlyn’s from RL’s request: something from Lily’s POV:

Painting by Numbers

Lily took an obvious amount of pleasure in making Sirius Black paint the nursery in the depths of summer, by hand, sweat dripping down his arm so that he could barely hold the paint roller.

It was her way of getting a small bit of revenge for all the mayhem he had caused during her tenures as Prefect and Head Girl, making him actually do something the Muggle way, by hand, like no respectable Pureblood wizard would ever do.

If there was some aesthetic value in a sweaty, shirtless, 20-year-old guy doing manual labor while Lily scrutinized his handiwork, that was all incidental.

“I think you’re lying about this whole, ‘no direct magic near a newborn’ thing,” Sirius grumbled, reaching up to wipe his forehead and smearing paint across his cheek. Green, because it was soothing and they weren’t sure of the gender yet.

“Some godfather you’ll be,” Lily sniffed, shifting her far-too-pregnant self around in the rocker she was draped across. “I’ve told you over and over, infants grow too fast for the effects of magic to be reliable on them. It’s dangerous to do direct spellwork on or near them unless it’s an absolute emergency. You could scar them for life!”

“I think this is all some Muggle ploy,” Sirius snarled, turning back to the wall and painting several hostile strokes. “And where’s your stupid husband at, anyhow? He’s supposed to be helping.”

“He’ll get here when he’s through at work, just like yesterday and the day before,” Lily replied, secretly hoping that he would be late again just so Sirius would have to do most of the work himself. “He’s off earning a paycheck, unlike you.”

“Paychecks are for the lower classes,” Sirius replied, slapping the wall with his roller and then yelping when a paint drip splattered into his eye.

“You all right?” Lily asked, more out of curiosity than actual concern.

“Fine,” Sirius grunted, clutching his eye. “I’m just going to go pop it out and give it a wash, be back in a sec.”

Lily snickered as Sirius pushed past her, giving the base of her chair a kick on his way by, and pattered into the upstairs bathroom. The sound of water running followed a second later, along with a colorful string of curses.

“Not in front of the baby!” Lily called gleefully, and Sirius answered by slamming the bathroom door.

Lily laughed until she had to pee, which actually happened any time she did anything longer than five minutes lately. She heaved herself out of the chair and waddled down the hall.

“Oi!” Sirius shouted when she pushed open the door. “You can’t just push open a bathroom door on a bloke! I could’ve been doing anything!”

“You’re washing your eyeball,” Lily rolled her eyes. “And this is my bathroom!”

Sirius’ retort was cut off by the sound of the door swinging open too hard and slamming into the wall behind it.

“James!” Lily called. “We’re up here!”

No reply came back up the stairs; in fact the only sound was the crash of a vase being smashed, probably the one on the table right by the door.

Sirius went on red alert immediately, yanking his wand out of his back pocket.

“Stay in the bathroom!” he ordered Lily. “Lock the door, and don’t open it until I come back, no matter who else it sounds like is out here!”

Heart pounding, Lily did what Sirius ordered, even though it was Sirius ordering it. She deadbolted the bathroom door as Sirius went down the stairs, then sat on the toilet seat, arms curled around her belly as far as they could go, which wasn’t far, given her girth.

After several minutes, Lily decided to climb into the bathtub and pull the curtain, in case she had to hide, too shaken up by now to realize that if the bathroom door was deadbolted, obviously there was somebody in it.

After an eternity, she heard someone coming heavily up the stairs, and held her breath until she was close to blacking out.

“Lily! Everything’s fine, open the door!”

Lily gasped out a painful breath at Sirius’ shout, relief flooding through her. She tried to climb to her feet, but couldn’t get a purchase on the slippery porcelain.

“I can’t!” she called back. “I’m stuck in the bathtub!”

There was a long silence before he asked if she was serious.

“NO!” she bellowed, furious at herself, “YOU are! Get in here and HELP me!”

There was another pause before a grapefruit-sized chunk simply blew out of the door and clattered to the floor. Sirius’ paint-streaked arm slipped through it and fumbled with the deadbolt for a moment before he manipulated it in the right direction.

The door swung open to reveal a snickering Sirius and a very irritated James.

“James, you wanker!” Lily shouted, pretty pissed off herself. “Why didn’t you shout up when you got home, you scared us half to death!”

James held up a crumpled piece of paper that read in block letters “SPELLED BY IDIOT CO-WORKER, LOST VOICE FOR 48 HOURS.”

Sirius was laughing so hard now that he was leaning against the doorframe of the bathroom, his howls echoing painfully off the tile. Lily ignored him.

“What the hell was that crash then!” Lily demanded.

James rattled his briefcase menacingly and mimed swinging it at something, mouthing ‘vase’ and ‘wedding present’ and some other things better off left mouthed.

Finally Sirius pulled himself together, and he and James carefully lifted Lily from the bathtub, which Lily swore never to set foot in again until this whole pregnant thing was over with. James looked extremely alarmed.

“But what are you going to do about basic hygiene?” Sirius asked.

“Cleansing spells!” Lily snapped without thought.

“Not near the baaaaaaaaby, you aren’t!” Sirius crowed, collapsing back into gales of laughter.

“Sod you, Black,” Lily grumbled.

If he hadn’t just risked his life for her, Lily might have brained him with the chunk he had just blown out of her bathroom door.

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