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AU. When Sirius and Remus go looking for Peter Pettigrew, they make a wrong turn and someone else finds him first. Eight years later, Sirius owns a book store and Remus manages it for him. When Harry stumbles into the store and they find out the truth, they decide it's time to be Stealing Harry. (SB/RL slash relationship in later chapters.)

Author Notes:

Warning: This chapter contains a scene featuring M/M sexual contact.

After dinner, Remus returned to the library, and took Nymphadora with him as a research assistant. Ted and Andromeda did the washing-up, while Moody stumped around the place hexing all the creepy-crawlies that the Tonkses hadn't felt were within their abilities to dispatch. Sirius betook himself and Harry to a quiet corner of the library, keeping one eye on Remus and Nymphadora while he pored over decades-old Wizarding comics with Harry. He wondered how many other things he'd stashed about the house were still there, waiting for him to remember and rediscover them. He hadn't gone to see his old bedroom; he wasn't sure whether they'd locked it up, or cleaned it out, or perhaps turned it into new House-Elf quarters. He didn't really care to know. He'd never kept anything of particular worth there, because Kreacher was likely to steal it or destroy it "accidentally". Sirius decided he'd let Andromeda take care of it.

None of them seemed to want to go to bed that night; the library, ghostly as it was, still felt better than the cold, musty bedrooms, however clean Andromeda had made them. Remus, he knew, was most at home among books; Nymphadora, he suspected, quite possibly harboured a lingering fear of the dark, which Twelve Grimmauld Place did not exactly put to rest.

Sirius just didn't want to leave Harry alone, though sooner or later he'd have to. Bill wasn't around this evening, after all; they'd had an owl from him saying he was staying with his father in St. Mungo's until Arthur had fully recovered. He couldn't spend the rest of their lives together sleeping in Harry's room, even as Padfoot. Besides, the house might be an evil, tired old place full of decay, but he couldn't deny it was safe. Even Bellatrix couldn't get in, not since he'd changed the passkey to the hexes on the doors.

Harry clearly didn't want to go to bed, either. He seemed all right, most of the time, but Sirius had seen the way he watched the adults, always keeping near one of them, putting Sirius between himself and the others if he could. He clung a little more -- like he had in those first days after they'd taken him from the Dursleys -- and he was more watchful than he had been. Sirius wondered what was going on inside his head, and if he ought to do something about it, but he didn't know quite what.

But it was well past Harry's bedtime, and Harry was beginning to nod off against Sirius' arm. Sirius shook himself out of his contemplation of Remus, bent by candlelight over the books, and closed the comic that was slipping from Harry's fingers. He cleared his throat, quietly, and Remus and Nymphadora both looked up.

"We can't do anything more tonight," he said quietly. "You both look done in. You'll start to miss things you can't afford to miss," he added, as Remus opened his mouth to protest. Harry, rubbing his eyes, looked up at his godfather sleepily.

"Both of you had better get to bed," he continued, sliding off the window-seat, putting a hand on Harry's shoulder to make sure the boy didn't stumble. He made sure Nymphadora had put down all her books, and Remus had left his parchments behind, before following them out of the library and locking it with a tap of his wand. Neither of them protested, as they broke away to go to their bedrooms, while he followed Harry into his. Harry held up his arms, and Sirius tugged the shirt off over his head with one hand, pulling his glasses off with the other. He folded the shirt, turning away to give Harry his privacy as the boy changed into a pair of flannel pyjamas, and climbed into bed.

"I could stay with you tonight, or you could stay with Remus and me," Sirius said quietly, as Harry curled into his pillow. "If you're scared."

Harry shook his head, green eyes bright, if a little unfocused without his glasses. Lily's eyes, in James' face; it was still bewildering, even after all this time. "I'm okay," he said stoutly. "I've got Snake," he added, as the small blue creature coiled itself near Frog on the nightstand.

"Brave lad," Sirius said with a smile, bending to kiss him on the forehead.

"Aw," Harry replied, squirming away. Sirius grinned.

"If you get scared in the night, or you need anything, you just yell," he said. "I'm right across the hall, and Nymphadora's next door."

"M'kay," Harry said, eyes drooping. "Sirius?"


"Are you my dad now?"

Sirius bowed his head. "Your dad is James, Harry. Always will be. But I'm know how Remus has that first-edition E.W. Hornung?"

Harry nodded.

"Right, okay, and you know how you've got a copy of it that's...sort of newer?"

"Yeah. It's brilliant," Harry said. "When I grow up I'm going to be a jewel thief like Raffles."

"I hope not," Sirius said. "Listen, it's sort of like...they're the same book, right? It's can't read the first-edition, because it's delicate. So you've got a new edition. One that you can beat up on and read and drop in puddles and such. It's all the same words, but it's not quite the original. I'm like your copy of the book. You get it?"

Harry considered him solemnly for a moment. Finally, he nodded, and Sirius breathed a sigh of relief.

"Night, Sirius," Harry said. Sirius noticed that Frog had been placed on the nightstand -- not quite on the bed, but within easy reach in the night.

"Night, Harry," he answered, as he left.


Remus was in bed, already half-asleep when Sirius opened the door quietly, throwing a flare of light onto the floor through the doorway.

"Harry's tucked in," he said.

"He could have slept in here," Remus murmured, half-against his pillow.

"He said he didn't want to. He said he'd be okay."

"You believe him?"


Remus yawned. "Me either. He'll yell if he's upset."


There was a moment of silence, and then Remus realised that it had definite awkward overtones. He rolled, leaning on one elbow to look at Sirius, who was standing in the dim room, unbuttoning his shirt anxiously.

"You all right?"

"Fine," Sirius grunted. "I thought maybe..."

Remus looked up at him, peering through half-open eyes. "Yes?"

"Listen, I can't...that is...I think tonight -- " Sirius sighed. There was a noise like air shifting over shapes, and Padfoot nosed his way along the bed, looking up at Remus with pale doggy eyes.

"If you kick in the night I'll kick back," Remus said, sliding his legs over so that the enormous dog could haul itself up. Padfoot curled against the bend of his knees, pressed nose to bottom, and let out one large sigh before his eyes closed. Remus, who understood that sometimes Sirius needed to be Padfoot in order to clear his head, ruffled the short bristly hair behind his ears, and fell asleep to Padfoot's even breathing.

He woke, the next morning, just before dawn, to find himself on his side, arm curled around Harry's slim body over a blanket the boy must have dragged in with him sometime in the night. Padfoot's head rested on Harry's hip, and both boy and dog were snoring lightly. He grinned, and lay back on the pillow; he was just drifting off to sleep again when he heard Padfoot change, and Sirius was bending over them.

"I'll put him back in bed," Sirius murmured, gathering up Harry, almost too big now to be carried. Remus waited for him to come back, expecting possibly a cold nose under his palm, but instead of changing into Padfoot, Sirius pushed him over gently, and slipped under the blankets, facing him, curled close on the small bed. He kissed him, slowly, fingers tipping his chin up just slightly.

"You all right then?" Sirius asked. Remus grinned.

"A bit, yeah," he replied, just as casually. Sirius pulled him close, and Remus happily buried his face in Sirius' neck, inhaling the smell of his skin. "You're a quick study," he said, and Sirius laughed low.

"Dunno what I'm thinking, really," he said. "Never fancied blokes before."

"Not once, Sirius?"

"Worl, James, but you know. That was friends really. I mean -- not that you and I -- "

Sirius' suddenly panicked tone made him laugh again.

"It's all right, Sirius. I've had years to work this out. You've had...well, days. Hours."

He felt Sirius nod. "You were right, you know. I'd no idea what I was doing, really."

Remus pulled back a bit, brought one of Sirius' hands up to his face, resting his knuckles against his chin. "Why'd you do it then, Sirius? Why now? And not sometime in the last ten years, thereby saving me the trouble of comparing everyone I went out with to you. Some of them were quite a lot better-looking than you, you know. Bastard."

"I dunno," Sirius muttered.

"You do. I know you, Sirius. You amble along in life until you have some great revelation and then you act on it and that usually gets at least one of us in deep trouble. And then you amble along until the next epiphany hits. So. Why now?"

Sirius scowled. "Just...staying with you and all -- "

Remus lifted an eyebrow.

"All right, it was that blasted blond fellow."

Remus blinked.

"What?" he asked, confused suddenly.

"I don't know his name, and I'm sure I don't care," Sirius said defiantly. "The blond one. The nancy."

"Some nerve, Sirius, calling anyone a nancy in your current position."

"You know the one. Buys old bibles and silly Muggle prophecy books."

"Mr. Fell?" Remus said, with a sudden smile. Sirius' look told him he didn't like that smile at all. "Sirius, of all the people to be jealous of, you picked the pudgy blond with an unhealthy interest in bibles?"

"It's not like I was asked," Sirius muttered. "But he came by the shop, you know, a few days after Harry and I moved in with you. And I saw you talking to him, and there was this book, and you were both leaning over it..."

Remus rubbed the bridge of his nose. "You can't do anything normally, can you?"

"I saw the way you smiled at him, you know. And I thought you're my Remus, and here you are being blatantly -- blatantly -- "

"Flirted with?"

"Yes -- no! Wooed!"

"Wooed? Sirius, you big nancy."

Sirius growled. "But you were seeing him, weren't you."

"Not just then, but I had at one time, yes. I gave up extremely good sex, by the by, when I gave him up."

Sirius paused. "Why'd you give him up?"

Remus sighed. "Because he wasn't you. And it always comes down to that."

Sirius looked rather pleased at this.

"And I'm bloody glad something finally lit a fire underneath you, because sometimes you're no picnic, you know," Remus added. "Jealous of Fell, of all people. Next you know you'll be wanting to throw Anthony Crowley out of the shop."

"Which one's he?"

"Tall chap, follows girls in sometimes, buys comic books. Looks like you."

"Flash bastard," Sirius grumbled.

"I never slept with him."

"And never you shall."

"Big talk," Remus said affectionately, and they were silent until he cleared his throat softly. "So Sirius...what precisely are you?" he asked. "Granted, there's me. But then there's also half the female population of England."

Sirius didn't reply for a while. Finally Remus closed his eyes, and relaxed against the pillow. "It doesn't matter," he started, but Sirius overlapped him.

"I'm here," he said. "I'm...Harry's godfather. I'm your friend. I'm Sirius."

"You're scared."

"Wouldn't you be?"

"I was," Remus yawned. "You forget you've finally found something I did first."

"Yes, I envy your forays into shirt-lifting when I was still learning how to unhook a bra," Sirius said sarcastically.

"Rude," Remus mumbled, against his cheek, eyes closing.


For a while, in the predawn gloom, Sirius lay in the bed and thought. He'd known Remus would understand his changing into Padfoot; he'd needed to sort things out, and he always saw clearer through the big black dog's eyes. It wasn't that the world was any less complicated, but dogs didn't have a whole lot of room for extra thoughts. It sort of...streamlined the process.

Which he needed, because now that...whatever it was...had actually happened, he wasn't as confident anymore. Now that it had, he was free to be just as anxious and upset and uncomfortable about it as he pleased.

Or, if he wanted, he could be deliriously happy and enjoy being in love and finally having got what he wanted. Namely, Remus Lupin.

Remus, he realised, was frightened of having him; fine, let him be scared. Sirius knew the truth. Remus was only frightened because he didn't know he'd had him for the last ten years, as well.

Three of the six events which had changed his life since he was eleven had involved Remus, and two of those after they had already left Hogwarts. Going to school and graduating were two, of course, and the third was the death of James and Lily; one could hardly push that aside, and that had been the turning point to end all turning points. But that didn't mean there weren't others, others in which the lanky man sleeping with his hand curled around Sirius' hip was inextricably entwined.

He'd become an Animagus at the age of fifteen for Remus, he and James and Peter, the little tag-along. Granted, back then he'd been seeing one of the Ravenclaw girls on a fairly regular basis, but then a man changes, doesn't he, between fifteen and twenty-nine? The point was, the three of them had been thinking of Remus -- and possibly a little about what a grand adventure it would be -- when they'd finally made the transformation.

Becoming an Animagus changed a person. Yes, you became an animal physically, but the animal also became a little bit of you. Sirius knew this, and he didn't mind it, but he also knew it had shaped the man he became.

The other two events that had altered him...well, they'd brought him to this point, hadn't they? He supposed he ought to count stealing Harry from the Dursleys as a turning point, but that was too recent for him to know what it would mean in another ten years. Not the way he knew, now, where the last two had led.

They even started the same way.


"I'm looking for Remus Lupin."

The waiter wrinkled his brow, then nodded, and jerked his head at the far corner. "Brown haired chap? Third booth from the end."

Sirius thanked the man, took the menu handed to him, and crossed to where Remus was seated, sipping a glass of water.

"Ordered yet?" he asked.

"Not yet," Remus replied. "I just ate. You can if you like."

"Might do. Christ, Moony, you look awful."

"Ta, Sirius."

"No, I mean -- you getting over the full moon all right? You're sort of drawn about the eyes."

"I'm fine, Sirius," Remus said, but even this wasn't snapped, merely sighed.

He knew Remus had been having a bad time of it lately, between the full moon and finding a new job, but the man looked downright ill. Sirius wondered how long he'd looked that way -- surely they'd seen each other since the full moon...

No, they hadn't really, had they? After James and Lily died, they met for the full moon, and once in a while for drinks -- Remus usually teetotal so that at least one of them would be sober enough to get them out of the bar. But not so much in-between. Remus always brushed it off.

"Sure you're not going to eat?" Sirius asked, as he ordered. Remus sipped his water.

"I told you, just had a huge lunch," he said.

They spoke of nothing much, over Sirius' sandwich and Remus' lemon-water; news of old school acquaintances, what Sirius was doing, what Remus was reading. Sirius was paying the bill, well-satisfied from a decent lunch and good company, when he realised Remus was eyeing the remains of his lunch, hungrily. Remus glanced up, saw him, and sat back nonchalantly.

"I should go," Remus said reluctantly. "Listen, I'd like to come by the bookshop sometime, maybe we could meet there the next full moon?"

"Right," Sirius agreed. "Not a proble -- Remus?"

His friend had slid out of the booth gracefully, but he'd stumbled on standing; now he was pale, clutching the table for balance.

"I'm fine, just a head-rush," Remus mumbled, but when Sirius touched his elbow, he leaned into the support. Sirius was shocked to feel how little he weighed -- light and almost breakable, like a bird.

"You're ill," Sirius said firmly. He began to notice things the table had hidden -- a tight belt and too-loose trousers, a shirt that seemed a size too large.

"No, it's just some..." Remus trailed off, and Sirius watched in horror as his eyes rolled up in his head and he slumped to the ground.

The next hour or so was probably blissfully blurred; waiters had stopped, and someone had called for a Healer, who tsked and took a pulse and before Sirius really understood what was happening he was sitting in St. Mungo's, on a remarkably uncomfortable chair, listening to some other Healer's promise that the service was confidential and nobody would be told Remus was a you-know-what.

"It's amazing how long they can survive, as a species, without food," the man said, and Sirius hated the way he referred to Remus as a "species". "The truth is, it's impossible to starve a werewolf to death -- they just get thinner and thinner until their body shuts down. You're lucky we caught this one when we did."

"We" consisted of Sirius, but he paid no attention to that.

"How long has it been since his last meal?" the man asked. Sirius considered it.

"He had broth on the ninth, after the full moon," he said, trying not to think about the fact that it was the twenty-seventh. "I haven't seen him since then."

"Has he done this sort of thing before? Some werewolves do -- they get in the habit of not eating because they don't have to. Or they do purposefully dangerous things, knowing it won't permanently injure them."

"He's not like that," Sirius said sharply.

"Then he's never shown any signs of malnutrition before?"

"Well, he's never been the most ravenous person. But he's always eaten."

The man consulted another form. "When was his last date of employment?"

Sirius thought back. "I'm not sure," he admitted.

"Did he have a fixed address? Was he paying rent?"

"As far as I know. Look, I'm his friend, right? He'd have told me if he was starving."

The healer merely nodded. "He should be waking up soon. That restorative potion the nurse poured down his throat is pure energy, so he should be out of danger soon. I'll leave you here."

Sirius nodded, and the man left. When he was gone, Remus groaned quietly, turned his head, and opened his eyes. Sirius almost flinched. They were too bright, too sharp -- how had he not noticed?

You can't notice what you can't see, a guilty little voice said in his head. You can't notice if you aren't there.

"All this fuss," Remus muttered.

"You, shut up," Sirius said, suddenly furious. "What the bloody hell do you think you were on about?"

"Did I think," Remus corrected, rasping a little.


"You used a tense shift -- "

"I should beat the hell out of you myself," Sirius shouted. "Starving! What sort of idiot idea is that?"

"I wasn't starving. I would have bought food when my next paycheck came in. It was food or rent," Remus added.

"You couldn't have borrowed a few quid?"

"Neither a borrower nor a lender be," Remus groaned, pushing himself up to a sitting position. The hospital pyjamas hung on his frame, loosely, and his cheekbones and collarbones stood out against his skin with frightening sharpness.

"You were starving yourself," Sirius said. "Why didn't you say something?"

Remus shrugged. "Didn't want you worrying."

"You complete idiot."

"Listen, do you think it's easy trying to support myself on three-day jobs and commission work? I can't work two or three days out of every twenty-eight, and I can't find a job where they don't figure it out and fire me like I'm some kind of monster. I'm trying to get by, Sirius, and you don't -- "

" -- fine, I'll hire you."

"Sirius -- "

"I need someone to run the bookshop. You're hired."

Remus looked down at his hands. "I don't want to live on someone's charity my whole life."

"Work for me a week and try calling it charity," Sirius said. He did, however, smile a little.

Remus was silent for a while.

"Can I have a sandwich?" he asked softly. Sirius rose and went to the door, catching the nearest orderly by the arm.

"Be a mate, pilfer a few lunches for us, will you?" he asked, pressing a few Galleons into the man's hand. When he turned around, Remus still hadn't looked up.

"I'm sorry. I was just trying to prove I could do it," he said. "I'd have asked if I thought I was really sick."

"You are," Sirius said drily. Remus put his face in his hands, fingers rubbing his forehead.

"You had your shop and all," he said. "You seemed happy -- not like after -- after James, you know, and I thought here we are, almost putting our lives back together again, and there didn't seem to be...I just didn't want to wreck what you'd built by barging in and being miserable at you."

Sirius sat, perplexed. "But we're friends," he said slowly. "Isn't that sort of the point?"

Remus looked up at him, dropping his hands back to the blankets. "Do you actually need someone at Sandust?"

"Yeah, I hate doing the shelving and book-keeping myself," Sirius said with a grin. There was a brisk knock on the door, and the orderly had returned, carrying a handful of sandwiches. Sirius, brushing off Remus' protestations, crumbled them up into small bits, and fed them to him slowly, refusing to let him eat too much at once.

Two weeks later Sirius led him into Sandust and put a pile of books in his hands.

"I've no idea where these go," he complained. Remus smiled, and looked down at one of the titles.

"I'll figure it out," he said. And he did.

Then he'd gone on to figure out the till, and the accounting, and the inventory. He'd figured out the whole shop. And there came a point when Sirius realised that his bookshop would probably have failed, or fallen apart, or caught fire, if it wasn't for Remus. He found that if he left Remus to his own devices when it came to fixing a paycheck, the other man's pride and indepdendence were assuaged enough that he didn't mind being his best friend's employee.

After all, Sirius needed him. And it was good to be needed.


"I'm looking for Remus Lupin?"

Sirius looked up from his crossword, sitting behind the counter of Sandust, and jerked his head towards the back. "He's sorting new stock. Can I help you?"

"Oh -- perhaps so -- you must be Mr. Black."

The man who held out his hand was friendly-enough looking, with a mop of curly yellow hair and a round, cherubic face. Sirius took it, wondering if this was Remus' latest "rare book dealer". Come to think of it, the man did look a bit dodgy. Nobody wore cardigans anymore, did they?

"I am," he allowed, shaking the hand grudgingly. The other man's smile stayed in place.

"I was wondering if you'd had that order in yet, the one from the estate sale a few weeks ago. I spoke with Remus about purchasing one of the collection he won the bidding on; an old family bible, not worth a terrible lot, but interesting as a curiousity."

Sirius slid off his stool. "Probably what he's sorting now," he said. "I'll check."

He walked into the back room just as Harry tumbled out of the fireplace, fresh from Molly's lessons, and touseled his hair as Harry hugged his waist. "Bloke for you out front, Remus," he said. "The fellow who likes the bibles."

"Oh -- Fell!" Remus said, with a broad grin. "Yes, I've found three for him -- " he lifted a few more volumes out of a packing-crate, carefully, and then picked up the crate, carrying it out into the front room. Sirius followed, dragging Harry, who was still attached to him at the hip and laughing loudly.

"There you are," the man said, as Remus set the crate down on the other side of the counter. Sirius stood back, just past the door to the back room, and detached Harry, dropping into one of the overstuffed chairs and listening idly to Harry's chatter while watching Remus and the blond fellow.

Remus reached into the crate and held out one of the bibles he'd acquired, opening it carefully, smoothing down a page gently with one hand. Fell's eyes lit up when he saw it, and Sirius narrowed his own. Remus began showing off good points and bad points -- foxed corners, frayed edges, illuminations and annotations. Sirius, annoyed with himself for glaring at a customer, turned back to Harry, and helped him sort out his books and homework. He wished the ridiculous decree for the restriction of underage wizardry wasn't in effect; he wanted to be teaching Harry charms and hexes and pranks, as well as boring history and composition. Still, Harry was bright, every bit as bright as James had been, if perhaps a little behind from living with Muggles for so long.

When Harry was settled and engrossed in his latest pleasure-reading, a new book Remus had recommended, Sirius leaned back in the chair and looked up again.

Remus and that man, whatever his name was, were examining another one of the books, heads bent over it, speaking quietly. Remus' eyes were on the man's thin blond hair, or examining his face as they spoke. Really, Sirius didn't like the look of the blond man at all. He looked like trouble. Clearly he was no good for Remus, and Sirius ought to know; hadn't they been friends for years?

He paused, then, and straightened in the chair, slowly, though it felt as if he'd been hit in the head with a bludger.

That man was trouble, and not because he looked suspect or was far too interested in strange Muggle religious literature. He was trouble because Sirius didn't want him having anything to do with Remus.

Because Sirius wanted Remus.

And clearly, so did the blond man whose face was currently two or three inches from Remus'.

Sirius took two deep breaths, to stifle the urge to throw the man out of his bookstore then and there. He hadn't had to learn much self-control, over the years, and it was quite an effort, but he managed to wait until money had changed hands, and Remus had put a lid on the crate, and the irksome blond fellow with the suspiciously cherubic face had left.

Only then did he relax, shoulders lowering, muscles in his neck loosening slowly.

And that was when he decided on the Plan. It was a good Plan, and it only really had one problem, which was that Sirius had never fancied a man before and had really no clue how to go about it. All he knew was that he was going to have to somehow prevent himself from hitting the next used book dealer who came through that door and within ten feet of Remus Lupin.


Clearly he'd gone insane, Sirius reflected, lying in the dim room in his family's house, grey dawn filtering through the drapes.

Not a bad insane, howev --


"Morning," Remus said, against the skin of his throat, which he'd just...licked.

"Do that again," Sirius ordered. Remus smiled.

"Good thing you went canine last night," he said, hair tickling Sirius' chin. "Harry's had enough trauma without coming into the room in the middle of the night and finding his godfather curled up naked with a werewolf."

"He's not an early riser..." Sirius pointed out.

"Doesn't matter."

"Oh? -- oh."

"While you were off meditating on the cracks in the ceiling," Remus said, "I was putting an alarm on the door."

"From the bed?"

Remus shifted a little, and held up his left hand, spinning his wand across his fingers. "Just a little charm to warn us if Harry gets close. Ever prepared, me," he said, and bent to kiss Sirius on the lips.

Sirius hadn't known it could be like this; not tripping over discarded clothing in the dark and fumbling with flies and hooks and straps; there wasn't that familiar sort of desperation to have it done with. It wasn't that he hadn't enjoyed all those times, it was just that there had always been...a goal. Now he didn't actually feel any particular desire to...well, he felt plenty of desire, actually, but...

He hadn't known you could wake up and find someone waiting for you and simply enjoy seeing the way the light caught the folds of the blankets, the fall of hair in their eyes. Remus tilted his head, and propped himself on his elbows.

"Did I do something you don't like?" he asked softly. Sirius closed his eyes, and shook his head.

"We're new together," Remus continued, bending to kiss his shoulder, brushing his lips over his collarbone. "Frightened?"

"No," Sirius grunted, sliding a hand over the ridge of his spine, fingers working up along his neck and into the hair just above the nape of his neck.

"Bet you are."

"I'm not if you're not."

Remus laughed.

Sirius was not accustomed to being laughed at in bed. Which was probably a good thing, he reflected, but now he wondered why. He liked that laughter.

He rolled, without warning, and tangled them in the sheets as he pinned Remus down, kissing him fiercely, wanting to lay claim -- wanting to drown out the voice in the back of his head saying maybe it had never been this way because maybe fancying girls was a habit and not an instinct.

Girls were nice. Remus was nicer.

Remus was also pulling him closer, twisting a little so that their bodies fit together, moving with a practiced grace that made Sirius moan and bury his face in Remus' chest. Fingers stroked his hair away from his face, smoothed it around his ears, lifted his jaw and tugged a little so that they could kiss again.

"How much," Remus asked softly, "Do you want to learn?"

"Everything," Sirius breathed. "Right now."

He leaned back, and Remus drifted a hand up to stroke his arm, thoughtfully. His fingers moved up over Sirius' neck and jaw, pressing his thumb to his lips as he had earlier, when he'd wanted to silence him.

Sirius opened his lips and nipped the pad of his thumb, gently. Remus closed his eyes.

"I'm not sure," he said huskily, "That you need all that much teaching, Sirius."

Sirius shifted his weight, hips sliding forward, and they both gasped. Remus arched his back, and the sensation, rippling up through his body, didn't stop. Sirius couldn't breathe, couldn't speak, just wanted to keep moving, keep feeling what he was feeling. Eager heat, a pulse that had nothing to do with blood and everything to do with the rhythm of his body against Remus, the almost painful pressure of Remus' fingers on his hips now.

None of it was more than touch, just pressure and movement, but Sirius didn't even realise he was growling until Remus growled back, and pulled himself up using Sirius' collar as leverage, and kissed him. The change in position made Sirius dizzy, and he clutched warm skin and bucked his hips once more and came, almost howling, as Remus tried to swallow the sound, moaning into his mouth when he followed a moment later.

They fell back on the bed, Remus boneless and smiling blissfully, Sirius feeling like a dead weight on top of him but too comfortable to move, skin tingling pleasantly.

"Well," Remus said. "I think we can consider your first lesson a resounding success."

Sirius would have laughed if he hadn't been devoting all his energy to the feel of Remus' skin under his cheek. He heard the other man retrieve his wand from the bedclothes where he'd dropped it, and murmur a cleaning spell, just before the door glowed bright yellow.

"That'll be Harry," Remus said, and Sirius slid out of the bed hurriedly, fumbling for his trousers.

"Remus! Sirius!" Harry yelled through the door. "Time to get up!"

Remus pulled the tangled sheets up far enough to preserve his dignity, and Sirius managed to fasten the flies with one hand while opening the door and catching Harry with the other.

"Good morning!" Harry shouted, bumping into Sirius and almost knocking him over. "Come make breakfast!" he demanded, running to the bed and grabbing Remus' hand, trying to tug him off it. "Professor Snape's here and we're hungry."

"Andromeda put a big bowl of fruit on the table if you're starving," Remus chided.

"I want oatmeal!" Harry said. Remus watched, amused, as Snake slithered up around his neck and peered at Remus from over one ear.

"He wants oatmeal. He wants oatmeal. There's clearly something wrong with the boy," Remus said, over Harry's head. "I blame you, Sirius."

Harry grinned as Sirius pulled a shirt on and buttoned it, hardly waiting for him to finish before pulling him out the door. Sirius cast one look back over his shoulder, as Remus slid out of the bed and began to dress also, before it closed behind them. Remus flashed him a grin that even Snape's surly early-morning scowl couldn't ruin.

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