Actions

Work Header

I Tried Writing Your Name In The Rain, But It Never Came, So I Used The Sun Instead

Work Text:

Don’t get Remus wrong. He loves his friends, he does! Loves them to the moon and back in fact. They’re his people, his favorite part of everyday, his found family. He’d do anything for them, no questions asked. But the thing is that doesn’t take away from the very simple fact that his friends are— Well frankly, his friends are fucking ridiculous. Remus knows this, has known it for five years now. But it doesn’t stop him from startling awake on the morning of his sixteenth birthday surprised by the sound of fireworks exploding in their dormitory and a raucous chorus of “Happy birthday Moony!” being shouted into his ear with jaunty gusto.

“You are wicked, wicked wizards,” Remus moans from where he refuses to get up on his bed, covering his face with his hands, a good call on his end considering that the very next moment he feels a cascade of confetti pouring all over him, (the poor house elves). “The worst of the worst! You deserve to rot in Azkaban!”

“Oh how you flatter us Moonykins,” Sirius croons, pulling him up while James and Peter begin a frankly awful rendition of For He’s A Jolly Good Fellow, their arms wrapped over each other’s shoulders while their free hands moved like a pair of conductors towards an invisible orchestra.

“I’m a decent person,” Remus groans, biting down on his bottom lip so to hide his treacherous smile from breaking free. “I don’t deserve this abuse.”

“Oh you love us, truly,” James sneers, ruffling his curls and dragging him the rest of the way out of bed. “Now c’mon you lazy sod, we’ve got a surprise for you.”

“A surprise?” He repeats, slightly cautious on account to the fact that marauder surprises usually include some sort of combination of dung bombs, exploding trinkets, and running away from impending detentions.

“A birthday surprise,” Sirius clarifies with one of his more mischievous grins. He looks like a fallen angel— equal parts beautiful and deadly— And Remus hates him for it.

“I didn’t ask for a birthday surprise,” Remus says in a deadpan.

“You’ll love it!” Peter crows, tossing Remus a T-shirt that’s too loose on the shoulders, so
probably Sirius’s then, considering that the prick’s built like a Grecian God— the perfect beater bastard.

After pulling it on, Remus pins them with his most practiced prefect scowl. “This wouldn’t be a birthday surprise that includes any hexes towards a certain house, would it? A house with an affinity towards snakes perhaps?”

“My word,” James gasps, pretending to clutch for a string of pearls.

“What do you take us for Moony?” Peter asks, faux owlish as he begins to levitate the chocolate cake.

“’S like he thinks we’re just a gaggle of trouble making Heathens,” Sirius sniffs, tugging onto him the Marauder birthday hat they found left behind in the Three Broomsticks third year and utilized religiously ever since. It’s a garish pink color with yellow polka dots and a bell that swings off the end, the birthday song ringing out from it intermittently. (Notably fourth year, while Peter was wearing it, the tune had sung out in the middle of a transfiguration exam.) “Here now, don’t you look precious!”

“Bite me,” Remus hisses, caustic as all get out while Sirius and James lift him up on their shoulders and begin their march down to the Great Hall.

“Don’t tempt me now Moons,” Sirius preens with a far too suggestive wink, one that goes right to Remus’s center and makes it so he feels his cheeks begin to redden. God he needs to fucking chill and make his body realize that all Sirius’s flirtatious little comments are just for show, for the hell of it. He’s always loved riling up all of their friends, and that’s all there is. That’s all there will ever be between them. He needs to come to terms with that already.

With a deep inhale, Remus forces himself just to relax into the pomp and circumstance of whatever his friends have planned out for today. If Remus is being at all honest, he knows that it’s pointless to try and fight against it.

 

.-

 

It still makes Remus flush when he sits at his typical seat in the Great Hall only to find a formidable stack of presents waiting for him to unwrap.

“Good haul I reckon,” Peter squawks once Sirius and James finally lift Remus down in front of the gifts— But only after a boisterous lap around all the tables of course.

“It’s unnecessary for you all to spend so much on me,” he says bashfully, unable to meet any of their eyes.

“Nonsense,” Lily reproves from where she sits to his left, pecking his cheek in hello— Though Remus privately thinks it’s mostly just because she loves making James’s face go all pale and gutted. “Happy birthday Rem!”

“Tsk Tsk,” Sirius clucks his tongue from across Remus, face lit with humor. “I don’t think the boyfriend would appreciate you getting all cozy with this little redheaded minx Moons.”

“Who’da thunk that a prefect can be such a slag,” James tacks on, looking honest to Merlin peeved off— As if Remus isn’t very, very gay, and completely dismissing the fact that he and Lily are like God forsaken siblings.

“Bugger off,” Remus tells them, tossing the bird for good measure. That makes it so Sirius tips back his head in golden, frothy laughter, and Remus loves the sound of it so much that he thinks he can listen to it for the next eon to come without ever getting bored.

“Took the words right from my mouth,” Lily sniffs before turning to her side to ask Marry McDonald about their arithmancy assignment due later in the day.

Gingerly, Remus shuffles through the gifts and letters he’s received, and makes a note of who he needs to send Thank You cards to later this week, a practice he’s never been able to shake from childhood. THere’s a box of Honeydukes’ finest from James, and a new, leather bound journal from Peter. There’s also the customary books from Lily and Dorcas, and a smart looking jumper from his mother.

“Have you opened mine yet?” Sirius asks a few minutes later, bright eyed and excited like an actual puppy come to life— and yes, the irony does not go over Remus’s head.

“I don’t hear any screams from the Slytherin table yet,” Remus says with a quirk to his brow when Sirius waves off the statement with an impatient hand.

“Oh get off it, that’s a general gift from all of us you twat.”

“A gift I never asked for, nor one that I want.” Remus interjects, but Sirius only ignores him.

“Mine’s the one in that rather posh looking golden wrapping paper, if I do say so myself.”

Remus fights the urge to roll his eyes at him, only picks up the small box while squinting suspiciously at what might be its contents.

“What is it?” He asks outright, making Sirius snort in that way that makes him look so fond— Remus ignores the staccato thudding to his heart at the sight.

“Believe it or not Moons, but norma folks traditionally unwrap their gifts to find out that very question.”

“Harty har har,” Remus sniffs, tipping his head back loftily. “Tell me Pads, do these normal folks you speak of ever have to worry that their aforementioned gifts might implode in their hands?”

Remus suddenly feels so very bad when Sirius’s excitement drops from his face and he looks even more put out than James had when Lily was taunting him earlier on.

“Hey, I was just joking around Padfoot,” Remus tells him, sliding one of his hands close enough to where one of Sirius’s lies that their finger tips touch— And it feels like a swarm of bumblebees are swirling around in his stomach. Sirius locks their gazes together, the ends of his lips tilting up into a small smile, but Remus can’t think of any other reassurances to say out loud before he feels a hand— sure and strong— clamping down onto one of his shoulders.

“All right love?” Caradoc asks, looking as striking as ever with his impossibly blue eyes and shaggy blonde hair and that lopsided grin that always feels like its piercing Remus with it’s perfection.

“Just giving him my gift Dearborn,” Sirius answers in lieu of Remus, tone gone icy and his hand now clenched into a fist besides Remus’s own. “Don’t tell me you forgot now?”

“Don’t be ridiculous Black, I wouldn’t forget my boyfriend’s birthday of all people. Especially with that production you all put on.” Caradoc toots a bit snappishly before looking back down at Remus, features softening. “I’ve got that game against Slytherin tonight, but I thought we can ditch the afterparty and have one of our own?”

Remus can’t help the chuckle that escapes his lips, leering as Caradoc assumes Lily’s newly vacated seat. “That confident you’ll win Captain Dearborn?”

“Well if I got you cheering me on,” he says lowly, slipping closer to Remus on the bench while tugging back a lock of his hair. “I can’t see how I could ever lose.”

Remus feels himself going scarlet, leaning forwards to kiss him, but pulling away when a series of coughing pops their bubble.

“Got a troll in your throat Prongs?” Remus asks with knit brows, while Peter only laughs uncomfortably and Sirius is too busy stabbing his flapjacks to join in on the ribbing.

“Oh, no no no Moons. Just needed to remind Dearborn that even if he beats those gits this afternoon, Ravenclaw will have to come up against us for the cup.”

“You reckon I’m frightened from that?” Caradoc laughs handsomely, an arm slung around Remus while he and James fall into companionable conversation about their respective teams chances. It’s a familiar sound that Remus can easily toon out as he finishes glancing through the stack of letters and gifts he’s received, discretely putting the box from Sirius into his robe pocket to open later in private.

Remus is almost through the pile, but as he sifted through the letters, a small, handwritten envelope caught his attention and his heart began to thump. Slowly, carefully, Remus pulls out the unfamiliar parchment— pale pink and scented like lavender— and read the words that seemed to be cutting his heart with each letter.

You have been cordially invited to the wedding of Lyall Rufus Lupin and Serena Celeste Bernard

“Oh.”

It’s like Remus’s entire heart drops to his toes and sinks six feet under ground.

He reads the first line again, and then a third time, and a fourth and fifth. He reads it until the words become blurred and the meaning escapes him, and all that’s left is this sick, unsteady feeling that’s got Remus’s throat contracting and the tips of his fingers going cold and everything feeling like it’s collapsed in on itself.

It’s like he can hardly even breathe.

He needs his Mum. He needs to talk to her, to hear her familiar, comforting words, to hear the lilt to her English that isn’t quite a cadence that’s french or Arabic, but a combination of them both. He needs to hear this from her, to know that he isn’t the only one blindsided by this. To ask if he should even go. To beg her to convince him not to.

Remus looks down at the invitation once more, at his father’s name that was past down to him, thinks about the fact that there’s not even a Birthday card attached to it or a special note from Lyall himself. A note that explains that Lyall knows that he hasn’t seen Remus in nearly two years now, that their relationship has been turbulent at best, and outright volatile at worst. That he sees this as a chance for them to start over, as a chance for him to try again at being a decent fucking father. A letter that wouldn’t erase all the pain, but make Remus think that there was a chance they could grow from it at the very least.

Remus doesn’t even notice the wet blobs dotting the parchment— the ones that could only be tears from his own eyes— until a soft touch to his forearm jolts him so harshly that Remus’s suddenly thrust back into the present, into the Great Hall with his friends and his boyfriend and the decision on whether to go to his own father’s wedding or not taunting him.

“Remus,”Sirius says his name very quietly, like a whispered prayer. “Is everything alright?”

Still shaking, Remus only nods jerkily, stuffing the letter into his bag and standing up with purpose.

He swallows down hard the thick emotions lodged in his throat before speaking, doesn’t want any of them to know, feels a peculiar and searing embarrassment over the whole ordeal. “I told McGonagall that I’d see her about being a TA next year and you know how she hates tardiness.”

Sirius looks thoroughly unconvinced, beginning to stand up himself. “I’ll walk you there, yeah? We’ve got transfiguration next anyhow .”

A glance passes between Sirius and James that Remus only vaguely notices, he’s too preoccupied by the words he must’ve read a hundred times over now, and this painful abandonment that’s clawing at his insides, this sensation of being so thoroughly unwanted, unloved.

Merlin, he needs his mum.

“’S fine Pads, I’ll just catch up with you lot once we get to class,” Remus doesn’t even wait for Sirius’s argument that’s sure to come. He just pecks Caradoc’s cheek hurriedly, and then waves the rest of them goodbye as he dashes through the corridor towards the passageway he and his friends had found while running away from Mrs Norris second year, one that lead straight to Hogsmeade.

There’s a rundown, dingy phone booth right outside of Scrivenshaft’s that was built a couple years before Remus had attended school here, meant for Muggle borns and Half-bloods like himself who prefer that form of mundane communication to keep in contact with their families. Remus is all but scurrying through the town to get there, probably looking like a sore thumb in his school robes and generally haphazard appearance, but Remus doesn’t care.

He dials their landline first, and when no one picks up he tries for her work number at the University, fingers crossed so tightly that he feels the blood begin to pulse in them.

“Please don’t be teaching, please don’t be teaching, please,” Remus chants under his breath like an incantation, feeling tumultuous waves of relief coursing through him when the line picks up and he hear’s her familiar greeting of, “Ello?”

“Mum,” Remus lies his back against the glass of the phone booth, slipping down until he’s sitting with his knees pressed against his chest and the phone cord twisted up in his fingers.

“Habibi? Remus?” She sounds worried, and fuck he should’ve realized that her first thought would’ve been to go to the fact that the full was only a couple nights ago.

“Nothing happened,” he tells her frantically, rinsing his hand through his hair, bottom lip worried between his teeth. “Nothing like that.”

“Oh, thank God! You scared me you pillock.”

Remus can’t help the smile that twitches against his lips at that. “Oy, mum ’s my birthday, you can’t talk to me like that! It’s just not on.”

“Oh I’m so very sorry,” she goads, and Remus can hear her shuffling through papers, probably returning to her work now that she knows Remus isn’t in any immediate danger. “Did you get my gift?”

“Yeah, it’s beautiful, but cashmere? It’s too much.”

“Oh hush, I’ll worry whether something’s too expensive for my qamar.”

Remus shakes his head at her coddling even though she can’t see him. Qamar is a popular, Arabic endearment that means both moon and beautiful. It’s a pet name she had been called by her Syrian parents ever since she was born, and a tradition she’s past down to Remus. Truly, she uses it more than his actual name, even while in front of his friends. It’s where James, Sirius, and Peter got the oh so smart idea to call him Moony, despite the obvious connection to his time of the month.

God they’re all such blunders, and Remus probably the blunderest of them all considering that he loves them more than breathing.

“Well, thanks then. Lils always says that green is a great color on me.”

“Well of course, you inherited my fabulous golden complexion,” she retorts and it’s just nice to be speaking with her, to fall into their familiar rhythm, their quick back and forth that might look out of place to other folks— the fact that they can act more like best friends than mother and son most days— but it works for them, and Remus wouldn’t have it any other way. “So what did your friends give you qamari?” She asks, probably knowing that Remus needs to tell her something and is just killing time until he musters up the courage to do so. Funnily, it reminds him of fourth year— the last time he saw his father in person.

The Lupins were trying to have a joint Christmas for the first time since Remus was nine, besides the fact that Lyall’s new girlfriend— a pure blooded witch from a small town right outside of Paris— had looked at Remus like he was diseased, and always made a point to say Vivian Hussein when referring to his mother, as if her using his mum’s maiden name when introducing her to strangers would make the fact that she and Lyall had been married for over a decade irrelevant.

It was Christmas eve, and the large, French estate Lyall now owned was eerily quiet, save for the three of them sitting in front of the fireplace, playing a game of exploding snap that terrified his mum to death even though she somehow won the lion’s share of the candy being bartered. Lyall had just made a joke about how “Vivian was always the smartest in the room even when she was pretending to be dumb.” And his mother had winked slyly, an inside joke Remus wasn’t privy to.

“So mum is a swindler?” Remus had goaded, which earned him a cuffing on the head by his mother and a booming sort of laughter from his father. And it had all felt so normal, so wonderful and golden and brilliant. Like those few snippets of peace between moons when they could pretend that Remus isn’t a blood thirsty monster. When his mum didn’t look at him with glassy eyes, and his dad didn’t have to shutter away in poorly disguised disgust. So with as much confidence as he could muster, Remus had just told them outright, told his parents a truth that was as inherent as the tawny color to his curls or the greenness to his eyes, or the Welsh and Arabian blood that pulsed in his veins.

“Erm, I’m— I think I’m gay.”

Remus thinks he could live another thousand years without forgetting the pure fear that collapsed over him after the admission, and the crippling relief when after a moment’s quiet, his mother had just tucked his head into her neck and shoulder— a bit awkward considering that he was already far taller. He most certainly will never forget the way he felt so fucking seen and loved and cherished when she told him that she already had an inkling and that she’s so happy that he’s found peace in himself and trust in them.

Remus wishes he could forget the twist of Lyall’s face— the cautious, “Maybe it’s just a phase?” that followed, and the resigned acceptance once his mom admonishes him with such a low, furious voice that Remus hopes to Merlin he’ll never be on the other side of it.

“Love is not a crime Lyall, and we will not entertain that notion in front of our son.”

“Yes, yes of course not. This doesn’t change a thing Remus my boy.”

The night hadn’t lasted much longer after that, he and his mother leaving in a hurry early on boxing day, and never hearing from Lyall sense.

Well, never hearing from Lyall until today at least.

Remus finishes rattling off his gifts, shuffling awkwardly in his seat once that just leaves the wedding invitation left.

“I’m so glad you’ve found such good people sweetheart,” she says glowingly, and it’s like Remus could feel the way she caresses his cheek at that simple turn of phrase.

“Yeah— Me too,” Remus says distractedly, breathing in deep before continuing. “I got one more thing though—“

“Oh?” She says expectantly.

“Yeah—“ Remus nods, lapsing back into silence, unsure quite how to bring this up in a tactful sort of manner, though thankfully his mum seems to have taken the reigns because before too long she excitedly asks him if it’s from Sirius of all people.

“Huh? What— No. Erm, i mean yeah he got me something but I haven’t opened it yet— It’s not really a birthday gift Mum.” Remus rambles, nervously tugging on the ends of his hair when she makes a noise of understanding through the other line.

“All right love?”

“No— Not really,” Remus says truthfully. “’S an invitation— One from dad.”

A heavy, taught sort of silence builds between them, and Remus can’t fathom speaking out loud what his father had sent him, afraid that it would hurt her just as much.

“I see,” she hums, tone gone rather sullen. “So the wedding invitation has arrived?”

Remus’s brows hike up so far that he swears they touch his hairline. “You knew?”

“Yes. He called me last week, asked if I’d be alright with you attending considering it falls on your spring break that you’d usually spend with me,” she says, but Remus has a heavy suspicion that it probably mostly had to do with Lyall wanting his mum to object somehow. Remus knows Lyall still loves her, that he wouldn’t have left if it weren’t for Remus’s affliction.

“I see,” he says in a very subdued, controlled tone.

“I told him it was your decision,” she continues. “Only, I thought he’d at least write you before sending the invitation.”

Remus pretends that the small chuckle he lets out right then doesn’t sound jagged to his own ears. “Well Lyall loves keeping us on our toes, doesn’t he?”

“Sweetheart, I’m sorry—“

“I’ve got to go to class,” Remus hurriedly interrupts, suddenly feeling like he might suffocate if he stays in this booth for any longer.

“Remus, I know that this isn’t ideal, but—“

“I’ve really got to go mum, I’m sorry.”

She sighs from the other end. “Of course love, just know I’m fine with which ever decision you make, yes?”

Remus swallows the lump of hurt and betrayal that’s clogged his throat before speaking. “Yeah, of course. Love you mum.”

“I love you Qamari, happy birthday.”

Remus mutters his goodbye and hooks the phone onto the receiver and feels so fucking dazed about all of it.

 

.-

 

Remus doesn’t end up going to class.

He knows that McGonagall will definitely inquiry why and will just assume it had to do with the full, but truthfully, Remus just doesn’t have it in him to face a crowd of people right now. He feels so thoroughly exhausted and just wants to go return to bed and sleep the day away, suddenly uncaring that it’s his stupid fucking Birthday. Though that plan is tossed out the God forsaken window when he ambles into the common room to find no one but Sirius lounging on the sofa nearest the fireplace— long legs crossed leisurely as he flips through the copy of Great Expectations that Remus had gifted him last Christmas.

Honestly, Remus shouldn’t be surprised about the ambush. Sirius is devastatingly loyal when it comes to his friends, so of course he’d be concerned over Remus’s behavior that morning. And yeah Remus appreciates the gesture, but he just can’t deal with anyone right now— Not even Sirius.

Silently, Remus’s eyes scan the room, calculating the best route too take so not to be detected by Sirius while trying to retreat back to their shared dormitory. Though those hopes of evasion are swiftly dashed away when not another moment passes until Sirius casually flicks his gaze upwards, and pinpoints directly onto Remus. So with a defeatist slump to his shoulders, Remus only nods to him before making the track upstairs, fully expecting Sirius to be on his heels and trying to prepare himself from the barrage of questions that’ll be shot his way once they’re in private.

Never being the one to disappoint, just as soon as their door slams shut Sirius is practically pouncing on him. “What happened?”

Remus schools his face to an expression of indifference as he slips off his robes— still dressed in his pajamas from this morning— and tosses them in the drawer beneath his bed.

“McGonagall is going to go spare, ’s the third time this semester you’ve skipped transfiguration.” Remus tells him, not mentioning the fact that the other two times happened right after a full and Sirius has always been a hard headed doofus wanting to be there for the aftermath of his transformations in the infirmary. As if he was afraid Remus would croak in his sleep or something.

“Minni’s passions towards me is irrelevant to the question at hand,” Sirius sniffs airily, strong arms crossed against his chest and piercing eyes glaring down at Remus from where he seems to be looming above him. “Now do I have to ask again what in holy hell happened this morning?”

“You can,” Remus offers with a one armed shrug. “The answer won’t change though.”

Sirius rolls back his entire head, as if eyes alone wouldn’t cut it. “You are such an insolent arse sometimes Lupin.”

“Gee, thanks,” Remus says dryly.

“Was it because of Dearborn? Did that prick do something?”

Stunned, Remus jerks back from him, completely confused now. “Car? No of course not, why would you think he did something wrong?”

Something passes over Sirius’s face that Remus can’t decipher, but it’s gone as soon as it came so he lets it go. He knows that Sirius’s never been Caradoc’s biggest fan. They’ve been quidditch rivals since Sirius was a third year and Caradoc a fifth. There’s also the fact that Sirius reasons that it’s completely unsavory for a marauder’s partner to be a prefect— nevertheless that the aforementioned marauder is one himself.

“Alright, then fess up will you.”

“Fess what up?” Remus asks just to be contrary, his heart constricting when Sirius only comes close enough that Remus can feel tendrils of his hot breath skirting against his own lips.

“Remus we’re best friends— Marauders. We’re suppose to trust each other.”

“Of course I trust you Sirius,” Remus yells in a sudden flash of anger, hating that he’d ever put that in question. “This has nothing to do with trust, all right!”

“No not all right Moony!” Sirius shouts back, peering down at where Remus is now standing with his shoulders pinched and brows furrowed in pure frustration. “Why can’t you just tell me what’s crawled up your arse so I can help you feel better already!”

“Blimey Sirius! ’S because you can’t bloody help me! ’S not even your responsibility to help me, to make sure I’m okay, that I’m always fucking happy or whatever.”

“Course it is,” Sirius all but barks, breaths gone labored and his hands tightening against Remus’s forearms, as if seeking for purchase, as if Remus is the only thing keeping him from getting lost at sea. “It’s been my job since bloody second year when I found out about your furry little problem and swore to you that it doesn’t change a single sodding thing.”

Sirius’s eyes are boring into Remus’s now— pale skies of gray against the mossy green of tree tops— and it’s all suddenly too much. Too real, and too heated and too intense. Just too much. Sometimes it feels suffocating, being the focus of Sirius’s every attention, especially when it’s not enough, not what Remus’s wanted since third year. It’s all too overwhelming and not nearly what he wants from him and Remus just wants to scream. There’s a thousand expletives right at the tip of his tongue that he’d love to just hurl at Sirius. And he starts to, breathes in deep just to prepare himself. But then he finds the hurt— the rejection— glittering in Sirius’s gaze, and he never wants to put that sort of emotion there. Never wants to scuff out the torch that Sirius holds for those he loves most, adoration he was deprived of as a child being brought up in a home as fucking ice cold as the Blacks.

No, Remus never wants to do that to him. Even if it’s not reciprocated, and even if Remus is seeing someone else, he still loves Sirius more than every galaxy and every breath and more than he ever thought possible before. So with shaking hands, Remus swallows down the words and plunges into his school satchel, picking up the crumbled letter and gingerly handing it over to Sirius before cocooning into his sheets.

“Read it,” Remus explains when Sirius quirks his brow at him, questioning. Remus lies down silently, watches Sirius’s befuddled brow smooth into shock as he does just that, watches as the pure fury spills over his features as he reaches the end, watches as Sirius tares it up into smithereens— What Remus had so desperately wanted to do but didn’t have the guts for.

“Sod him,” Sirius growls out, fists clenched tight against his sides and teeth gritted. “Sod him to hell.”

Remus doesn’t realize he’s begun crying again, until Sirius clammers towards him, thumbing softly at the droplets and saying something low beneath his breath that’s probably comforting but Remus doesn’t have it in him to try and discern the words.

“He’s got what he wants,” Remus chokes out eventually. “Serena’s got a couple kids from a past marriage, and she’s pure blooded. She’s what he wants.”

“I hate your father,” Sirius retorts, lying besides Remus now and looking murderous.

“He’s a good man, just got stuck in a situation he wasn’t prepared for,” Remus says, wanting nothing more than to believe his father really could’ve loved him in an alternate world. One where Remus wasn’t bitten, and maybe liked girls the way Lyall does.

Sirius looks about ready to argue, but Remus begs him not to, “Please, just not now, I just don’t wanna think about it.”

Sirius’s face drops but he nods instantly. “Course, anything you want. Anything for you Moons.”

remus gives him a half hearted smile in thanks before he snuggles deeper in the blankets, his head dropping against Sirius’s chest in a familiar sort of way. They haven’t slept like this— wrapped up in one another— since Remus had begun going out with Caradoc way back in May of last year. But at the moment Sirius is the only person he could stand being around, and he’s desperate for some contact, and he just wants to go to sleep damn it.

Sirius tiffins for only a second before he readily wraps his arms around Remus and it feels so normal, so natural, that it’s not another minute that passes before Remus is being dragged into slumber, muttering a soft “Thank you,” to Sirius before he’s completely succumbed.

 

.-

 

“You know, considering your name and all, this is just bad form.” Remus tells Sirius bluntly mid April, his quill impatiently tapping on his star chart that they were instructed to keep track of for all of term.

“Oy, you mean to tell me you think I should be good at this shite, and potentially make Mummy dearest approving?” Sirius snorts, rattling off the coordinates he’s used to find another required star.

Remus chuckles as he copies down the information, thinks that James Dean’s Rebel Without A Cause image has nothing on Sirius. “Parish the thought.”

“You’ve been forgiven Moons, but you’re on thick fucking ice.”

“Ever so merciful Pads.”

“And don’t you forget it,” Sirius grins cheekily before returning to the telescope, and then promptly pushing it aside another minute later. “Humph, I give up, this is a load of rubbish,”” Sirius collapses back besides Remus, resting on his forearms as he flutters his lashes up at him. “Could I just look at yours later tonight Moonykins.”

Remus clucks his tongue. “You’ve got to learn something Monsieur Dog Star, the OWLs are only a few weeks away now.”

“And then I’ll be free from ever coming back to this bloody tower again— Oh, unless you’d like a little astronomy tryst Moonbeam,” he’s quick to amend, eyes smoldering and mouth poised in to a lecherous leer.

Remus thumps him on the nose, rebuking. “Dream on mate.”

Ever since Remus and Caradoc had called it off about a fortnight ago Sirius’s little innuendos and flirtatious side comments have been amplified to the max, as if he’s made it a personal mission to have Remus blushing at least once in each of their conversations. And yeah, admittedly Remus adores the attention, but he’s not stupid enough to think that it’s anything more than Sirius’s typical brand of humor, and on top of that he’s begun feeling extremely guilt ridden for this tentative little flame he’s practically always tended for Sirius.

Remus had told his friends that he and Caradoc had broken up amicably, that it was logistics really. Come June Caradoc will be graduated and hopefully excepted into the Aurors academy, and Remus will only just be beginning his NEWT levels. Neither of them need a distraction as large as a long distance boyfriend to worry about. And that’s all true, but Remus had studiously avoided to mention the fact that apparently Caradoc— after asking Lily to let him into the Gryffindor tower that day Remus had received his father’s wedding invitation— had meandered into his dorm only to find Remus and Sirius together and comfortably spooning in bed.

Remus had explained to him it was nothing, that they’re mates. And where the chaser did trust that nothing else but slumber had been going on, he had eventually asked Remus outright if he had feelings for Sirius— apparently it had been a concern of his for quite a while— And well Remus has always hated lying unnecessarily. So they had called things off right then and there, and it’s so strange. Going from trusting someone so implicitly, (Nights spent naked and tangled in shared sheets and mornings painted with conversation that ranged from idl to where they wanted to end up in ten years) to barely even being able to stand to glance at one another in passing. And Remus hates the thought that his dumb, persistent crush on one of his closest confidants had hurt someone else Remus really and truly cared about. But at the same time, he wonders if it was ever really anything worth anything, because he knows to his core— in his heart of hearts— that there’s quite possibly nothing that Sirius could do that would make Remus stop speaking with him outright. The thought of the mere potential of that is really quite ridiculous.

Remus shakes his head as he tacks on the final sighting Sirius had spoken out loud, trying to rid himself of those far too contemplative thoughts on such a lovely spring night.

“But really, have you thought of which NEWTs you’d like to take?” Sirius asks, tracing patterns onto Remus’s denim clad leg with the tip of his finger. He shutters, pretends that it has to do with the slight breeze despite the fact Sirius had slung his leather jacket over Remus’s shoulders almost immediately when they first came up here a couple hours ago.

“A bit, yeah,” Remus says, glancing upwards at the velvet night sky, and the stenciled stars embedded into its expanse. “I’m top of the class in DADA so I’ll definitely be taking that one.”

“Modesty is such a pretty color on you Moons,” Sirius sneers, making it so Remus tips back his head in frothy laughter, feeling so fucking iridescent and buoyant and free. He’s only ever felt this way when with Sirius and he doesn’t want to think on that fact for any longer.

“Oh piss off you plonker.”

“No, keep on bragging about your academic achievements Monsieur Prefect,” Sirius sits up now, shoulder checking him playfully as he picks up their discarded joint to relight and take a huff. “’S very sexy librarian of you.”

“Well maybe you’d have your own bragging rights if you ever cracked open one of your textbooks?” Remus needled, stealing the spliff for himself.

“Oy now you’ve done it,” Sirius warns before he pounces onto of him, knees bracketing Remus’s narrow waste and one hand encircling his wrists above Remus’s head, very nearly burning him on impact.

“Get off of me you barmy prick,” Remus squawks through his laughter, wiggling his hips to try and break free.

“Apologize for that lip Lupin or else,” Sirius says, his free hand poised to tickle Remus’s ribs, the relentless fucking bastard.

“Alright, alright you nutter. You’re very, very smart. Top notch, truly. I’m sure Snivellus weeps over your potions prowess. And no one comes close to your transfiguration scores.”

Preening, Sirius relaxes his grip— face going ashen when the moment he does, Remus rolls over so that their positions are flipped, and he’s grinning down at him cockily.

“You just finessed me,” Sirius balks, dark hair spilling over his forehead and long lashes flapping in shock. “

“You trust too easily,” Remus mock croons, pinching his cheek before sliding off of him so that they’re lying down side by side once more, arms brushing ever so slightly and the space between their pinkies feeling like a chasm that Remus wants nothing more but to breach.

“You— Remus Lupin— are a world class arse.”

“’S the squats.”

“You’re going to have to explain it to Professor Kettleburn when my boggart during the exam just turns into you making smart mouthed remarks.” Sirius warns lowly.

Remus snorts, another beat pulsing between them as his thoughts begin to drift. “You know that’s how my parents met? With a boggart I mean.”

“Oh yeah?”

“Yeah— Mum was just taking a short cut through the woods and thought she saw some sorta sketchy guy following her, turns out it was only a boggart and dad leaped into action right on time to rescue her. Said she was the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen and fell in love right that instant.”

Sirius presses together his thin lips, and Remus can feel the way he’s examining his profile, its scorching. “Sounds nice. My parents were literally promised to each other since they were like nine— So not quite as heroic as that Harlequin romance.”

Remus smiles to himself, still gazing up at the night sky, and feeling his body going ablaze when his pinky finally rests against Sirius’s own. “They really loved each other, still do I reckon. Just too bad they got stuck with me.”

“Remus, don’t,” Sirius warns, voice sudden and harsh like the lashing of a whip. “Don’t think like that.”

Remus doesn’t have it in him to argue, so he only shrugs it off. “’S funny, Mum even made a boggart trinket to cap their wedding cake.”

Sirius smiles weakly. “Your mum is absolutely brill.”

“I know,” Remus grins dopey, head beginning to go hazy from the smoke and everything feeling just a bit out of reach. “I’m going you know.”

Sirius goes still. “Yeah? To the wedding?”

“I was gonna ask Car to come with me, but— You know.”

“Yu broke up,” Sirius says, sounding almost amused or happy or something.

“You don’t like him.” Remus intones.

“What’s their to like? He broke our dear Moony’s heart.”

Remus chuckles softly, wonders for the first time if Sirius actually knows anything at all.

“He hated you Pads,” he tells him, knows that his grin must look maniacal but doesn’t care. “Thought you were a right fucking bastard.”

“Humph. Pray tell Moonbeam, did you defend my honor from that brute?”

“Course I did doofus, you’re everything to me,” Remus doesn’t immediately realize that he said that last part out loud, but feels a little better when he sees his own flush mirrored in Sirius’s face.

A sense of something Remus can’t discern goes static between them before Remus turns his head so that they’re looking straight at one another, and there’s an intensity that Remus rarely sees on Sirius’s face— a brightness to his eyes that always means something important. “You’re everything Remus, you’re the whole world and all the stars and just all of it.”

Remus blames it on the pot, but he suddenly feels brave enough to card a soft hand through Sirius’s hair— startlingly black tresses that end a few inches above his shoulders and frames his face so beautifully that he looks like one of those Tinsel Town stars come to life.

Merlin, he’s so achingly gorgeous.

This suddenly all feels so inevitable, and it scares Remus deep down— right to his core— But makes it so something wonderful and splendid coils right along with it, like maybe Remus doesn’t have to keep himself away from this vibrancy.

“Come with me?” He asks him so openly, without pretense or hesitation.

“Thought you’d never ask.” Sirius answers immediately, and his smile is something truly blinding.

 

.-

 

The wedding’s the Saturday after Spring hols begins.

Sirius was suppose to be spending the week with the Potters— just like he’s done for practically every holiday since second year— But he assures Remus that he doesn’t mind, that he’s actually looking forward to the three days they’ll be spending out in France with Lyall, followed by the week lounging in the Welsh cottage that Remus has always called home. “You know how I get when I don’t get to see your mum’s lovely face in proper intervals.” He had told Remus snidely, ducking down for the punch Remus promptly aimed his way.

“Shut your sodding mouth you delinquent!”

“Tsk, tsk, that’s no way to speak to your future step dad Moons.”

That’s around the time Remus had tackled him with a pillow to his head— Sirius’s only saving grace having been James walking in for a final check around the room in case he had forgotten anything, cheering Remus on once he realized there state of disarray.

Remus’s mum had picked them up from King’s Cross only a few hours after that— a port key having been prepared and sent over for them to take once they settled in and dressed for the occasion.

Remus is standing in the cramped, upstairs bathroom now— clad in a set of dress robes Lyall had gifted him last Christmas through the post (Probably already planning on the proposal) and he’s currently trying to settle his curls into more of a contained mess, finally reasons that he’ll never be able to get that effortless perfection that Sirius seems to have been born with and just gives up, spritsing himself with some cologne to Finnish off.

“You look so handsome,” Remus hears his mother before turning around to see her standing in the doorway, camera already in hand and smile splitting her face in half.

“You’re obligated to say that, considering I’m your son and all.” Remus intones wryly.

She swats his arm, and picks up the comb to finish off what Remus had started. He’s sometimes startled to look at her and realize just how much they actually look alike. The same golden brown hair, and the same, comically large eyes fringed by thick lashes— She’s even got the same, sole dimple right on the apple of her cheek that Remus gets when he smiles especially widely.

For possibly the hundredth time today, Remus wishes he didn’t except the invitation. Wishes that he could stay here with her and Sirius, away from the impending mess. But it’s too late now and they’re already running behind.

Seemingly reading his mind, his mum smooths one of his curls gently behind his ear. “You’re too kind, always have been Remus. I know Lyall doesn’t deserve your coming, but he’s so excited that you said yes.”

“There’s free alcohol at least,” Remus shrugs, making her laugh and then quickly straighten to half heartedly scold him that underage drinking isn’t glamorous or a good idea.

“Oy, almost believed that speech mum, you’re getting better at them,” he says and she only replies with another smacking to his forearm, stepping back victoriously.

“I’ll go pull out that key thingamabob, alright?”

“Yeah, and I’ll find where Sirius’s wandered off to.”

 

.-

 

It’s almost disarming when Remus walks into his childhood bedroom and is met by the image of Sirius— looking for all the world like the pure blood heir he truly is— just standing in the center, toying with a familiar, golden wrapped box.

“I never opened it,” Remus tells him, making it so Sirius staggers back, and eyes going dark as he glances over Remus. “You clean up well.”

“Hah, thanks Moons, was just about to say the same to you.”

Remus smiles at him before plucking the birthday gift out his hand.

“You’re not even curious what I picked out?” He asks, and if Remus didn’t know better, he could’ve sworn that there’s an undercurrent of diffidence found in his voice.

“Got distracted, and didn’t feel right opening it without you.” Remus explains, tugging shyly at the little ribbon on top. “But I guess there’s no time like the present?”

Serious nods, gesturing at him to finally tare it open with a megawatt grin.

Remus isn’t surprised when he finds a small, velvet box inside— It only made sense after all, considering the size of the gift. Though his breath does go ragged when he lifts the lid and gently lifts up a dainty necklace with a locket dangling from it’s center— beautiful but masculine enough for a young man. It’s something Remus would long to own if he ever could afford something like this.

“Sirius,” he admonishes, cheeks going scarlet and heart seizing up into a ball of warring emotions. “This is too much. So fucking much.”

“’S nothing,” Sirius argues with a nonchalant flick of the hand. “Less money for my parents to get their grubby little claws on.”

“I can’t except this,” Remus tells him, moving to placing the piece of jewelry back into its case as gently as possible.

“Course you can,” Sirius retorts sourly.

“NO. I can’t.”

“I bought it for you Remus.”

He suddenly feels so irritated over him not understanding how Remus would never except something so damn extravagant. “I won’t,” he tells him, admittedly more cross than maybe warranted, but whatever.

Sirius tugs a hand through his hair, glaring at Remus as if he was the difficult one. “You haven’t even seen what’s inside it!”

“And I don’t intend on looking,” Remus says, pushing it against Sirius until he finally took it in a flurry of frustration, quickly grabbing for the locket and clicking it open with his thumb, revealing two photographs within it’s square frame. One of Remus and his mother and the opposite being a photo of Remus and Lily sitting at a library desk, with Sirius, James and Peter making goofy faces behind their figures. One Muggle photo of his blood and the other Magical of his chosen family.

“It’s beautiful,” Remus hears his mother speak out loud from where she’s come up besides him to peer at the gift.

“Thank you Ms Lupin,” Sirius grins like the cat who’s caught the canary, obviously thinking that he’s won as he shuts the locket once more, and it’s the first time Remus spots the Arabic engraving on the front, translating to Qamar.

“How did you know how to write it in Arabic?” He asks before he can stop himself.

“Complements of that fourth year Hufflepuff, Nadia— She’s had a bit of a crush on me for a while and was oh so excited to help out,” he gives an infuriating wink, which makes Remus roll his eyes at him and his mum giggle, endeared.

“Well this will go perfectly with your robes tonight Remus, speaking of which. You both better get going. Unless you miss it all together.”

She pecks each of their cheeks, and Remus casts Sirius a look that very clearly tells him that their conversation isn’t over, but Sirius only smirks back, unafraid.

 

.-

 

It’s exactly what Remus expected the wedding to be.

The reception’s inside of a grandiose ballroom in a Parisian hotel filled to the brim with people Remus either doesn’t recognize or faces of distant Lupin relatives that look at him with pity in their eyes— which were then forcibly flickered away by a dirty look casted by an ever indignant Sirius.

“Look at me with my very own guard dog.”

“They’re arses.”

Remus shakes his head amusedly before leading him to their assigned seats at the head table.

Surprisingly, Lyall’s actually beaming when he first sees Remus, clapping him on the shoulder and introducing him to a few folks as his eldest son. And it’s nice. Nice enough that it doesn’t even bother Remus when Serena carts her children a fair distance away from him after the first dance for the wedding party— as if she’s frightened they could catch lycanthropy from merely being around him for too long. But the kids end up crowding around him anyways, asking about Hogwarts and his scars and what flavor of cake he would’ve preferred (both of them utterly miffed why their mother would choose a bland vanilla of all things.) And against Remus’s will he’s endeared, knows that he’ll never be an older brother to them but still, it’s appreciated how much they actually want to know him.

Sirius never leaves his side and Remus is so beyond thankful that it ended up being him who came along— Especially when it turns out that a good chunk of the guests recognize him as the Black heir and meander towards the pair of them just to exchange pleasantries. Of course Sirius would be the belle of any ball, and Remus can’t help the way he’s endeared by how stridently Sirius is trying not to be a complete prick to any of these folks that his mother probably wishes he would spend his time with instead of a couple of blood traders and a halfblooded, halfbreed.

Sirius even insists upon spinning Remus around the floor when a not totally awful song begins to play out by the band— It’s mostly Remus stepping on his toes and Sirius trying his best to lead but it’s fun and their laughing and it makes it so something warm and wonderful blossoms in Remus’s chest when they’re standing so close that Remus feels charged just looking into the stormy, blueish gray color of Sirius’s beautiful, star-spangled eyes. But when they Finnish, a pretty, blushing witch walks up to them to ask for a dance and Remus pushes him along amusedly.

“You sure?” Sirius asks, expression gone doubtful as the girl flutters foot to foot waiting for him to whisk her away like the prince charming archetype he exemplifies so effortlessly.

“I need a drink anyhow Pads, go on and have some fun,” Remus assures, surprised how genuine he’s being— reckons it has to do with the fact that it’s felt like they’ve both just been standing on this precipice for weeks now. A ledge that they could jump off of at any moment together, whenever they find the time fit. Like a promise waiting to be kept.

This girl doesn’t threaten that in the least. No one would, Remus knows that in his bones.

“Alright Moony, just don’t go crazy on me or else I’ll have to tell your mum that you’ve been a naughty lad.” Remus gives him a V shaped salute when Sirius winks at him for good measure.

 

.-

 

Remus eventually ambles into a small alcove, close enough that he can still hear the thumping beat of the music, but far enough away that he doesn’t attract any curious glances from any unwanted onlookers.

It feels good to have a moment to breathe, to just collect himself away from all of it, where he doesn’t need to put on a happy face, like it doesn’t feel as if his father has left him entirely now.

“A bit overwhelming, yeah?” When remus pivots around its Lyall who’s walking over with the crooked smile Remus had inherited from him. He looks content but exhausted, and it’s the first time they’ve been alone together since before Remus could even remember. “You’ve always been like me with the aversion of the crowd.”

Remus takes the olive branch for what it is with a thin smile. “It’s a lovely night though.”

“It is innit,” he stands besides Remus so that they’re both looking over at the panoramic view of the city at night. He’s around Sirius’s height, and his hair has gone a bit unruly, and a lot gray and he’s more long limbs than anything else— just like Remus— And he’s so much the father Remus remembers from his childhood that it almost hurts. “Promise you won’t tell if I pull out a fag?”

“As long as you share,” Remus goads, hand extended with his palm open for the bribe.

Lyall tosses back his head in handsome laughter. “Now that! That bartering is all Viv.”

Remus bites on the inside of his cheek as he lights up wandlessly. “Folks say they can’t believe she’s my mom— think she’s like an older sister or something.”

“’S the eyes,” Lyall says sagely, offering his own cigar up for Remus to light. “You both got those huge, green orbs that make folks think you’re both young and old.” Remus nods, doesn’t mention how it’s a painfully similar sentiment to what Sirius had once told him on a late night in the common room with the fire roaring and the moonlight drenched over Sirius with such a romantic sort of tenderness that it made Remus want to kiss him right then, without any abandon. “I swear she would’ve been the perfect Gryffindor if she had a lick of magic in her bloodline.”

“So you think you and Serena’s kid’ll end up going to Hogwarts like us? Or Beauxbatons?”

Lyall stiffens, utterly petrified— like a deer in headlights. “Is it that obvious?”

“She hasn’t drunk one flute of champaign all night,” Remus explains with a nonchalant drag, as if this isn’t his worst nightmare come to life. “And she’s a ravishing bride, but there’s still a bit of a bump there if you know where to look.”

Lyall’s eyes are amused but his voice is grave when he warns Remus never to repeat that sentiment within a five hundred radius of Serena. “You’re such a smart bloke Remus my boy, I swear if you and your mother weren’t cut from the exact same cloth you would’ve been a Ravenclaw like your old man.”

Remus chuckles, wonders if this sort of tension is normal between a father and son. Never remembered seeing it between James and Fleamont. And though Peter’s dad died when he was still young, the blonde’s only ever talked about him like he was some sorta comic book hero come to life. But for all his faults, Lyall is no Orion Black, just a confused and sometimes helpless man. A man that abruptly came in over his head.

Remus wonders when precisely he began thinking of his father as just a normal human— infallible and as prone to mistakes as the rest of the lot. Reasons that it must be part of growing up.

“Sometimes I wonder that too, but then I’d probably never met Sirius and the others, and I’d never risk that for all the gold in all the worlds.”

Lyall looks suddenly so very tired. “Ah righto laddy. Nice to see you two still going strong.”

Remus frowns now, his brows furrowed. “Sirius and I aren’t dating Dad.”

“Oh,” one of his brows kinks up, incredulous. “But you told us about him asking you out at the end of last year and—“

“That’s Caradoc, we broke up a couple weeks ago,” Remus explains, flat enough to cut. All of the warmth has seeped from the conversation and he can’t bare to look at his father any longer. “You would’ve known as much if you sent me a letter, you know— Instead of using me as an excuse just to talk to mum.”

Lyall’s face goes very, very pale. And his spare hand stretches and curls, without anything else to do, or maybe like he’s trying to grapple for this conversation that’s exceedingly turning off the rails.

“Yes of course. I’m sorry— It’s just the way you were behaving, and how he looked at you is the way folks use to say I’d look at your mother. And I shouldn’t have assumed—“

“You know what they say about that pesky habit,” a third voice interjects from the hall leading to the main party. Sirius stepping into the light as beautiful and brash as ever. “What it makes of you and me and all.”

“Ah, Sirius, nice of you to have come.”

“No need Mr Lupin,” he shrugs, standing securely on Remus’s other side and looking unflinchingly at Lyall. “Came for Remus and nothing else.”

Lyall’s face softens to resignation, “Well then still, thank you for being such a steadfast friend to my boy.”

Remus can hear Sirius’s next words without his even saying it— the snarled out that he’s Vivian’s son and Lyall is a bit of a deadbeat. And as much as Remus would like to see his father’s face react to that, he doesn’t think it’s exactly the appropriate setting for that sort of conversation. So he stops it with a pointed squeezing to Sirius’s hand.

“I’m tired dad, you mind if we call it an early night?”

Lyall frowns, and looks like he might object. But then he must pick up o something in Remus’s face because he just nods tiredly, ruffling his hair as if Remus was a toddler again and everything was normal and lovely and exactly what he’s been yearning to have his whole life.

Remus now knows that dreams are meant for sleeping and reality is rarely that lovely. But then he catches sight of Sirius from the corner of his eye, and thinks that maybe sometimes it’s even lovelier.

“Course laddy, the wards are already set to let you in, have been for years now.”

Remus doesn’t know exactly how to respond to that, so he doesn’t.

 

.-

 

Sirius doesn’t look the least bit surprised when Remus gathers their things and pulls out the port key to leave that night, though it’s a complete contrast to his mother’s gasp and squinted eyes when they clammer into the living room.

“Bismalah— You’re home early,” she notes with a shocked hand pressed against her chest, but Remus swears there’s a lilt of relief in her words.

“Missed your beautiful face Ms Lupin, I begged Remus for us to return,” Sirius crows cheekily, clutching his side when Remus elbows him with intent.

“Imma go wash up before we go to bed,” he says once explaining to his mother that he just didn’t feel comfortable sleeping in such an unfamiliar room.

“Course love, I’ll put on a pot of tea for when you finish.”

Remus kisses her forehead gratefully and tosses Sirius one more meaningful glance before making it upstairs.

The hot water and familiar lavender soap help clear his mind, and Remus really does feel so much better being home. To the customary smell of incense in the air and the ever creaking floorboards and the security that always permeated the cottage.

Clad in a threadbare t-shirt and pajama bottoms, Remus pads over to the ledge of the stairs— bare feet stumbling to a halt when he catches on the quiet, mumbled conversation happening below between his mother and Sirius.

And yes, yes he knows that this is wrong and how curiosity evidently killed the cat and all. But satisfaction brought it back and this is Remus’s home and he can’t help but strain to listen in on them.

“…as awful as I thought it would be?” He catches his mother asking, and can already picture the way Sirius is cracking his knuckles, or worrying on his bottom lip— The same way he always does whenever he’s keeping a secret he wishes he wasn’t.

“Lyall’s an arse, I don’t know how you ever married him,” he says in lieu of an answer.

His mother’s laugh is something abrupt and musical and far too loud considering the fact that the time’s creeping on midnight. “He is a complete pseudo intellectual prat. But he gave me Remus— So tell me, how can I ever be upset that I ever fell for that worldweary professor look if he did that. I wouldn’t know what I would do if I didn’t have that boy.”

Remus can feel his ears heating up, so fucking thankful every day that he has a mother as remarkable as her. Someone so strong and loving and fearless that when she found out her only child had been transformed into a werewolf— a lowlife, monster in the eyes of the society she had only married into a few years prior— She only shrugged her shoulders and met the struggle head on, with a wicked smile on her lips and open arms that Remus always felt safest burrowed inside of.

“Yeah— He’s amazing, a real angel among men,” Sirius had mumbled so lowly that Remus had to strain to hear him. “He thinks you and Lyall would’ve stayed together if it weren’t for— well you know.”

Remus hears their oven screeching open and the smooth slide of silver against silver, is sure that his mum has put in a tray of those instant biscuits she adores so much from the market— The ones that only take around ten minutes to bake, and are probably shaped like easter eggs considering the season.

“We wouldn’t have,” she answers so assuredly and gravely that Remus feels it like a punch to the gut. “We were too alike in all the wrong ways, I wish my son would understand that.”

“He doesn’t seem to be able to think of himself as anything more than a burden,” Sirius retorts moodily, probably doing that thing where he crosses his arms in the exact right breath so that his biceps are rippling and has got his lips pinched like he just tasted something tart, and he’s for sure glancing over to the side, as if glaring at inanimate objects could solve all his woes. The utter berk.

Another resounding silence falls between them, and Remus is seriously starting to feel like a drifter just listening in on what’s meant to be a very private conversation between his mum and the guy who’s his maybe, sorta, possibly, kinda boyfriend. Which is just all levels of strange that Remus is afraid he’ll pop a blood vessel. So he schools his features into as innocent of an expression as he could muster and begins his descent towards them— stopping suddenly when he hears the next words pouring out his mother’s mouth in that tone she gets whenever Remus is behaving hardheaded or when she’s grading the paper of a student that she knows can do so much better and just needs to rant about it to someone.

“You love him very much, no? More than a simple friend that is.”

Remus is fucking mortified, his breaths turning shallow as he thinks of a plausible way he can escape to a different town and change his name and maybe live on the land and meet a nice, boring sort of guy who maybe owns a bookstore? Someone who his mother could never meet and subsequently never be able to ruin Remus’ life in such a tragic way.

“He— He doesn’t know. ‘Least I don’t think he does.”

“So it is a secret?”

“Pff, hardly. I mean I’m almost certain that James and Lily have begun a betting pool about us with the rest of the school.”

“Oh— How awful—” His mother says with barely suppressed laughter.

“I wanna tell him— God I love him. And I can’t believe I just said that to you of all people before him, but still— He’s sorta my world but he just— He just—“

“Never lets himself have nice things,” Remus’s mum finishes in such a knowing way that it borders on exasperated. And yeah, yup. This is how Remus dies. His tombstone will read beloved son and friend who tragically suffered a stroke when hearing the man he’s dreamt of marrying one day wax poetic about him to his very, very smug mother. “Well if it’s worth anything, I think you’re leagues ahead of the blonde. Pretty but my, boring as a block of bricks.”

Sirius lets out a barking laugh at that, positively gleeful. And Remus can’t believe he’s so lost on such an immature idiot. But poor Caradoc, he had no chance at keeping up with the ping-pong match that is Remus and his mother whenever they started talking about their favorite poets or authors or the latest headlines in the Muggle media. No, nothing like how Sirius is always equipped with a cheeky comment that startles them both with humor, or how he would spend the week leading up to a Lupin visit reading the latest books Remus had finished and subsequently tossed onto his side of the windowsill. And Caradoc simply was not born with Sirius’s quick wit or his razor sharp one liners— Not even the way Sirius would clutch onto his convictions so steadfastly that he’d defend them to the grave.

Caradoc just didn’t fit. But Remus refuses to let himself finish the oh so obvious thought to that. Doesn’t marinate on the idea that Sirius had never even tried to forge his place in this little corner of the galaxy that Remus and his mother called their own. How he had just stormed through— like the whirlwind he is— one weekend the summer before third year, and how he just melted into the foundations of this place before anyone had even noticed.

“He was a wanker! I tried telling Moons, but he just wouldn’t listen!.”

Remus knows for a fact that his mother is smiling mischievously now, needs to strain once more to hear her whisper conspiratorially to him. “Between just you and me, Remus never did look at him the way he does you, or anyone for that matter.”

“Oh?”

“Thinks you shit rainbows and placed all the stars in the sky, I swear it. Probably that you hung the moon while you were up there.”

“If I’m being honest Ms Lupin, I sorta wish I can unhang the moon for his sake.”

They both go excruciatingly quiet right then, probably both feeling guilty in their own, distinct ways. And nope. No! No way is Remus going to let the two most important people in his world resinate on such bad feelings. And if that conveniently ends his mother exposing his feelings about Sirius to the bloke himself— Well that’s just the warm fudge on the double brownie.

As casually as possible, Remus pads into the kitchen— the largest and most open room in the house— to find them sitting at the table with cups of tea in their hands and both their gazes glued to the half moon outdoors.

“Oy, you two alright?” He asks as evenly as possible.

“Great,” his mother answers without missing her mark, effortlessly going to her feet and spilling out the rest of her drink. “Remus habibi, I’m so glad you’re home early but I’m exhausted. Promise that you’ll tell me everything tomorrow?”

“Yeah, course mum,” Remus says, by rote, as he leans forwards for her to hug him good night, and studiously pretends to not see the wink she discretely volleys Sirius’s way.

“There’s biscuits in the stove, so take them out when the timer buzzes. Good night boys.”

“And then there was two,” Remus says, more than a bit sardonic as he watched her scurry off upstairs, eventually turning around to spot Sirius toying with the stove— a bit miffed and a lot bewildered, but mostly just in aw.

“Let’s not burn down the whole house, yeah,” Remus intones as he twists off the oven, knows that his mother has always liked her sweets a bit burnt anyhow.

“oh, yeah. Hah, good call Moons,” Remus grins brilliantly at him, and God Remus will never be able to face that smile without goin weak at the knees. “So, erm. For curiosity’s sake, how much of that conversation did you over hear?”

One of the corner’s of Remus’s mouth curls, and he can’t help but lean against the counter top and gaze up at Sirius just a tad bit haughtily. “Well I did catch that snippet of the pair of you clucking like hens and poking fun at my ex. Which isn’t on Monsieur Padfoot.”

Sirius sniffs, head tilted imperiously with that blithe way of his. “I’ll have you know Moons, that it was your mother doing most of that clucking, and I don’t know about you, but I’ve always known the woman to have impeccable taste.”

Remus laughs, eyes crinkling and his insides feeling like he’s just been filled with helium, like he might just float away with this sort of happiness— all the more beautiful and treasured by its rarity.

“The point stands Pads,” he pretends to reprove, arms crossed against his chest. “It’s not good form to insult the past romantic entanglements of your boyfriend, makes him feel like a right pillock.”

Sirius straightens up so quickly and hopefully that Remus swears it’s like he’s been shot by lightening. “Boyfriend? Is that right? I wasn’t made privy Monsieur Moony.”

Remus sinks his teeth into his bottom lip, can’t help the way he’s grinning so wide that it begins to hurt. “Well that’s because I just made the executive decision for the both of us.”

Sirius looks positively incandescent, and Remus thinks he must be in the same state. “Bold move Moony! Very bold,” he crows happily, swaggering closer and looking like he wants to ravish him right on spot.

“You’re my world too you bloody idiot.” Remus tells him with hushed words before cupping his cheeks and pulling him down for a proper snog— Clacking teeth and spit soaked lips and tongue sliding against tongue while Sirius’s hands frantically palm up and down his torso— like he was afraid that touching him on any one place for too long would make this all disappear. SoRemus only pulls him deeper, and clutches onto him harder, feeling his skin blazing when Sirius’s hand brushes against the line of his trousers, and with a huff he just reaches back, grabs the hand and places it firmly on his arse, moaning into Sirius’s mouth when he greedily kneads his fingers into the meat there.

It’s this edge of remarkable and it feels like all the things waxed about in Muggle fairytales— like his insides are imploding and his chest wants to pump into dust and like he could never feel this way again. Like he’s been irrecoverably altered, like Sirius is a part of the essence of his very fucking soul.

“Oh God Remus,” Sirius breathes out shakily when they finally pull away for breath, fingertips pressing a consolation of bruises against his sides when Remus begins nibbling at the juncture of his neck and shoulder, wantonly. Just craving the taste of Sirius’s skin on his lips. A cocktail of salt and sweat and something distinctly Sirius. “Please Moons! Please don’t let this be just a spur of the moment thing! I can’t do this dancing around anymore. I just I can’t pretend like I don’t want to fucking kiss and hold and clutch onto you constantly. Like I don’t want to fucking fuck you right through your mattress.”

Remus’s cheeks goes red hot and he presses his face into the side of Sirius’s neck, breaths gone shallow.

“I love you Sirius, I think I’ve always loved you.” His heart stilts, but Remus pushes forwards, doesn’t want there to be any doubt between them. “I want everything you do— Erm, notably that last bit, because I really don’t think I can stop kissing you now that I know how you feel against me.”

Sirius’s body shakes in silent laughter, wrapping his arms around Remus all the tighter in response. And it all feels so fucking wonderful. It feels like soaring with no inhibitions, like lilac skies on nights they spent tucked away from the world save for one another, it feels like everything Remus has ever wanted, and somehow— miraculously— Sirius wants it to.

It feels like they’ve stumbled into their own slice of the universe, and Remus wants to get lost in this wonderland for the rest of time. Wants to embed himself in the crook of Sirius’s body, to twine together in the most intimate of ways. To love him and let himself be loved.

And for the first time in forever, it feels like a possibility Remus can reach.