"What do you think?" asked Sirius, pirouetting to show off his costume to full effect, the cloak billowing around his ankles.
"Red is really not your colour, Padfoot," Remus said drily. "The frock's nice, though."
Sirius gave him a wicked grin. "I knew you'd like it. Now it's your turn." He held out something grey and furry.
Remus stared at it in horror. "No. You can't be serious. I won't do it."
"C'mon," Sirius pleaded, blinking large, black-fringed eyes winsomely. "You agreed that I could choose what we went as this year."
"He's got you there, mate," said James, pulling a green tartan nightgown on over his head. "As I recall, it was the prefects who voted on the Fairy Tale theme for this year's Halloween party. It's your own fault if you said Sirius could pick which one."
"I thought he'd pick some Wizarding fairy tale," grumbled Remus. "But no; it had to be 'Little Red Riding Hood' for some reason."
Sirius grinned again and pushed the grey, furry thing into his hands.
"This isn't funny, you know," said Remus with a sigh, tying the string under his chin.
"It's not like anyone else knows," said Peter reasonably. "I think the ears are very fetching. At least you don't have to wear lederhosen."
"You've no room to complain, mate," Sirius told Peter. "Look. I -- er -- 'borrowed' a crossbow from Hagrid. You'll look like the perfect German fairy tale huntsman."
"You're not arming him, surely?" James cried in mock horror.
"Don't worry," Sirius assured him. "It's not loaded."
Remus patted Peter on the arm. "I think your knee socks are very dashing."
"I just don't want to look like a git in front of Maddy," said Peter, looking worried.
James and Sirius groaned. They did not approve of Peter's sometimes-girlfriend from Slytherin.
"What's she going as?" Remus asked kindly.
"A tart?" suggested Sirius.
"That's not much of a costume," James replied, tying a bonnet under his chin.
Remus shot them a quelling look. "Enough, you two."
Peter stared at his toes. He knew how his friends felt about Madeleine Yaxley. "I think she's going as some kind of princess," he said quietly.
"Lily's going as the Queen of Hearts," said James dreamily.
Sirius rolled his eyes. "'Off with their heads!' I swear, all these two ever think about are girls." He looked to Remus for sympathy, but found none.
"Is this all I have to wear?" asked Remus. "Just the ears?"
Sirius grinned, and Remus felt a familiar sinking sensation in the pit of his stomach. "Of course not!" He whipped a second tartan nightgown and bonnet out from under his pillow, and displayed them with flourish.
Remus took the garment and examined it critically. He saw that it was monogrammed MM inside the neck, and knew that his sinking feeling was justified.
"Detentions all around again, is it?" he sighed, pulling the Deputy Headmistress's nightgown over his head.
"Why break tradition?" asked Peter with a grin. He held open the dormitory door and bowed. "Shall we go down, ladies?"