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sam_storyteller ([personal profile] sam_storyteller) wrote2005-07-15 11:57 am

Alive 1/2

Rating: R (Remus/Sirius)
Author's Note: The Latin and verse in Chapter 3 are from Ovid's Metamorphoses, ch. 10.
Summary: Remus might be going mad -- or he might be bringing Sirius back from the dead.
Warnings: Discussion of mental illness and institutionalisation.

Also available at AO3.


Chapter 1: Trappings of Love

The seduction happened in steps. He remembered that.

There had been no one moment when he looked up from an essay parchment or a book, when he woke in the morning and thought Oh -- Sirius. Of course.

Well, it had been even more basic than that. He hadn't ever decided he fancied boys in one moment either. The fact was, the realisation just sort of gently washed over him, that he fancied boys, and Sirius fancied him, and what was he to do about it?

He'd never thought about Sirius that way. Objectively he knew he was handsome, but he was also his best friend. It'd be like wanting to kiss Peter.

He had already become comfortable with the new ways Sirius looked at him in sixth year, the way Sirius began to touch him differently. He was anxious for a while about the way James looked at him too, as though he was stealing something that didn't belong to him, something he wasn't entitled to, by dint of being their lieutenant and not quite their equal. But obviously James and Sirius sorted it out somehow, as the glares -- and the anxiety -- subsided.

It was nice, of course, to know one was admired, to know that Sirius' eyes followed him across the room when he walked to his dresser to get a shirt or across the room to nick some ink off James. It gave him a small pleasurable squirm in his stomach to know that he was someone's focal point. That'd never been a good thing before.

He just wasn't certain what to do about it. He liked Sirius, of course, Sirius was his friend, his good friend -- closer than a brother.

He didn't really want to think about Sirius and brothers in the same sentence. Not when he was also noticing the way Sirius' body moved, the deep blue-black hair, the new shyness in Sirius' smiles.

And he did act differently, now, in surprising ways. He put his hand on Remus' back to guide him out of class, clapped him on the shoulder more than was strictly necessary, refused to wrestle with him like he did with James and Peter. Once, when they'd been up late, Remus studying Charms and Sirius trying to tutor him, he'd leaned across the table and pushed Remus' tufty brown hair up off his forehead.

"You look tired," he'd said, in an extremely rare moment of admitted affection, and then, "Can I help?"

"You are," Remus had replied. Sirius' eyes had glowed. Remus did love his eyes -- objectively, as someone who (being raised poor) appreciated beautiful and unattainable things.

And even when he knew that Sirius was within his reach, if he wanted, even when he understood it, Sirius was always just slightly beyond him. He couldn't picture kissing Sirius and not meaning it as a joke or on a dare. He couldn't imagine touching Sirius' body with the unique possessiveness that comes from love.

But on dark, late nights, lying in bed, when the world seemed unreal anyhow, he felt that perhaps if Sirius...if Sirius admitted that weakness first...he might be convinced.


"Do you know, Sirius, I almost suspect you of having depth?"

Sirius looked up from the trunk he was packing, in consternation. "Sorry?"

Remus sat on his own trunk and leaned back, resting his elbows on the bed behind him. A sheet of parchment dangled from one of his fingers. Sirius swallowed. Remus smiled, almost feline in his smugness.

"Depth," he said. "I know you don't like to show it, but I really do think you might have some."

"That's an awful thing to say about a person," Sirius tried lightly, but Remus shook his head. His fingers moved, and two slips of paper slid out from behind the parchment -- train tickets. Sirius dropped onto his own bed.

"You weren't supposed to find that till I was at the station," he said.

"Yes, I didn't think I'd need my Arithmancy book until Monday," Remus mused. "It's low, Sirius, leaving a letter in a chap's book like that."

"I knew you wouldn't agree if I asked you," Sirius said unrepentantly, though he looked vaguely regretful about being caught. Remus brought the parchment around so that he could read it.

"Dear Moony, I know you can't go home for Christmas on account of everything and the moon on the 18th and your parents not being home for Christmas anyway. So I reckon I'd spend about the same money on a present as I'd spend on train tickets to Potter's house and back and his mum and dad say it's okay as long as you don't mind sharing a bed and I didn't figure you would cos it's only me and I bathe more than Potter does anyway. So if you will please come for Christmas the tickets are for the twenty-second and back on the third so you can be back early for Prefecting meetings and all. Please come and have Christmas with us cos I don't fancy wasting train fare and still having to owl you a cake or something, and I'm arse at picking out Christmas presents anyway. From Sirius."

He glanced up. Sirius' face had no colour in it. At all.

"When you get back, I am going to spend quite a long time tutoring you. For a genius like yourself, it's criminal what you do to commas, Sirius," Remus added. "And you didn't even put a bow on the letter."

"It wouldn't have fit in your textbook," said Sirius, almost absently. Remus stood in a swift, clean movement and set the letter and tickets carefully on the bed.

"This shows forethought, Sirius," he said quietly, standing in front of his friend, arms crossed. "Forethought, empathy, and quite ungrammatical sincerity. One could distinctly call it depth, I think, and get away with it."

Sirius looked up at him, and Remus could imagine how he felt; mouth dry, heart hammering, hands cold. It was how he'd felt himself, the first time he'd told someone he fancied them.

He was surprisingly lacking in anxiety, really. But then, when he'd found the letter his heart had leapt into his throat and he'd realised that as much as he might want to mistrust Sirius for what he and James had done in fifth year, Sirius was better than he had been. Sirius deserved forgiveness. For this alone, if not for all the other things he'd done to atone since then.

So he'd decided it was pretty much time to kiss Sirius Black and put him out of their misery. He'd planned ahead of time. He wasn't nervous. He felt somewhat numb, really.

"Well?" he asked. "Don't you agree?"

Sirius was so still, in that way he had when he was either panicking or on the scent of mischief.

"Will you come?" Sirius asked eventually. Remus, in answer, hooked his fingers under the knot in Sirius' school tie and tugged. Sirius moved awkwardly, standing and stumbling forward when Remus shifted his grip to the knot itself, pulling him close -- chest to chest, thigh to thigh, faces a few inches apart.

Remus flipped his fingers around the knot, moving Sirius forward very, very slowly. He had to lift his chin just a little to kiss the taller boy, and Sirius had turned his head so that their lips didn't quite meet evenly -- he found himself pressing a chaste kiss to the side of Sirius' mouth. Not at all what he wanted.

But then Sirius growled in the back of his throat and turned to meet him and Remus sucked just a little on his bottom lip. Sirius responded more eagerly this time, and before he knew it, Remus was standing in Gryffindor Tower, thoroughly kissing and being kissed by Sirius Black, who was clinging to his shoulders as if he might fall down otherwise.

As first kisses went, it wasn't that great, but the second kiss broke all the records.


It was not terribly common, even in the "modern times" the boys considered had arrived, that a boy and a girl should live together with the intention of sinful cohabitation outside of wedlock. Even if Lily's parents would have stood for it, and they were accepting enough people that they might have, James' father never would. He and James had only one row over it, and that was a civilised one at the breakfast table which ended in James sullenly eating too much jam on his toast.

James had learned, in seven years at a magical boarding school, to be devious. He had also, if only recently, learned that Sirius and Remus were plotting a similar sinful cohabitation -- and of a slightly more serious nature, "modern" society still being what it was. Sirius didn't seem to give it a thought, but James could see the anxiety about it written on Remus' face every time Sirius mentioned offhandedly that he and Remus were getting a flat.

So after the row with his father and another row with Lily about why it ought to matter (which was really them angrily agreeing with each other, when one got down to it) he went to Remus and suggested something that even the shy and private young man had never considered.

"A...a beard?" Remus asked, drawing his eyebrows together. "I mean, it rather smacks of dishonesty, James. It's one thing simply not to talk about it, but..."

"No, it's not that," James said. "Most of us know...about you, and Lily's parents are fine about that kind of thing, I think she's got an uncle that...well, anyhow, it wouldn't be as if you were actually living with her."

"Shame, really, she's much tidier than Sirius..." Remus mused. "Explain how you propose we make this work, James."

"You and I would just...swap. You could live with Lily and nobody'd care, on account of -- "

" -- me fancying men? -- "

" -- well, if you want to be blunt about it. So you move in with Lily and I'll move in with Sirius, all nice and legal on the leases. For a few weeks we'll just do that. Then, we'll just sort of...shift. Some night we'll move all your things into my room and all my things into your room and Bob's your uncle."

Remus contemplated the top of James' parents' table, the brown contrast of his smooth-coloured hands with the uneven woodgrain.

"Sirius won't like it," he said reluctantly.

"It's just for a few weeks. I'll smooth it over with Sirius. And it's not like we won't be over at each others' flats all the time anyhow, is it?" James asked amiably.

Sirius, true to Remus' predictions, did not take it well. Smoothing was not an easy process. Even after James assured Remus that Sirius was amenable, even after Lily gave them a really nice rug as a housewarming gift, Sirius was still sullen.

He was sullen when they ate out, he was sullen when he came over, he was sullen when Remus -- Remus Lupin! Former Prefect at Hogwarts! -- took an enormous personal risk and pulled him into the shadows of a niche between two stores in Diagon Alley and did outrageously indecent things to him in nearly-broad-daylight.

Remus had thought he was getting better about it as the weeks passed. It was nearly time for them to commit the Stealthy Night-Time Room Swap, after all.

Then he made the mistake of asking Sirius over to have breakfast on a morning Lily was going to be there.

Remus wasn't a terrific cook, but he'd been learning by watching Lily, and he could make eggs and toast and sausage. Though the Bacon Fiasco a few days ago had convinced him that, once this situation was resolved, Sirius would have to be the one to make the bacon, or they'd just go without.

Strange. He'd never thought at eighteen he'd be -- well, settled. Like this. Certainly times were uncertain, but he had a great faith in Sirius, perhaps greater than was merited, and he saw no reason to desire anyone or anything else.

"Oh, blast," Lily said suddenly. Sirius looked up from his effortless completion of the Daily Prophet crossword, and Remus glanced over from where he was poaching the eggs. "I've forgot the orange juice again."

"Yes, I noticed," Remus remarked, turning a sausage with his fork. "I nipped out and bought some, you owe me three sickles."

"You are so well-prepared," Lily said with a grin, and kissed his cheek. She had the habit; she did it often to him and Peter, though less so to Sirius, King of the Macho.

Remus smiled, and looked up to see Sirius, murderous envy in his eyes.

He was ominously silent through breakfast, though Lily was eager enough to chatter away about inconsequentials. He kept his silence as Remus cleared the plates and as Lily prepared to meet James for a morning walk. He was silent as Remus, having bid Lily goodbye, came back into the kitchen and began putting away the dishes that the charmed scrubbing-brush had been cleaning.

Finally, Remus turned to him, and said mildly, "Are you angry with me?"

"No," Sirius replied sullenly.

"Are you angry with Lily?"


"Is something wrong?"

"When's she going to jilt James, then?"

Remus drew his eyebrows together. "Jilt James? What have you heard?"

"Are you two shagging?" Sirius asked, with the complete calm of a doomed man.

Remus burst out laughing.

"Shagging? Lily and I? Why, should we be?" he asked, through tears of mirth. "Is that what you're angry over?"

"I'm not angry, and you can bloody well stop laughing at me!" Sirius exploded. "If you are, just out and tell me! I see the way she looks at you!"

"You mean when she's looking at me, thinking 'Gosh, there's a handsome chap, too bad he's sleeping with my boyfriend's best friend and has zero interest in the opposite sex'?" Remus demanded. "I realise I'm charming, Sirius, but even I have limits to -- "

"Do you?" Sirius growled, standing up. "Because from what I see, those limits seem to include an awful lot of tolerance for the opposite sex. One of them, anyway. You're so prepared, Remus, you're so much tidier than James, this weekend isn't good for you to move back with Sirius -- "

"Stop it, Sirius, just stop it. Whatever she might be thinking, and I don't deny that Lily can be daft and flighty -- "

" -- ha! -- "

"Goddammit, stop interrupting me!" Remus shouted.

"Then stop lying to me!" Sirius shouted back.

Remus went very still.

"So that's it," he said softly. "Because I lied to you at school about being a werewolf. You don't trust me at all. All those times you picked on the other people I spent time with -- all those times you interrupted my tutoring sessions with Peter -- you thought I couldn't possibly be telling you the truth because I lied to you from the moment we -- "

"Are you shagging Lily?" Sirius asked, ruthlessly.

Remus met his eyes. "What does it matter? You won't believe me if I say no. Do you want me to be, Sirius? Are you scared of me? Scared of the fact that if I do swap rooms with James, if I do live with you, something might go wrong?"

Sirius had opened his mouth to interrupt again, but Remus had put his hand over it. They were standing too close, Remus' palm pressed against Sirius' mouth, Sirius' own hand gripping his wrist.

"You are going to let me speak, Sirius, because I don't ask this very often, and when I do you had bloody well better sit up and take notice," Remus said, voice low and dangerous. "I love you. I love you, Pads. I don't lie to the people I love. I showed you the deepest secret I had, and you used it to try to get someone killed once. When we talk about trust I think you should know you're going into that battle with very little artillery on your side. Either you believe me when I tell you something or this ends here, in Lily and James' kitchen. And that would be a sad end to things. So think very carefully before you introduce the topic of who's trusting whom, Sirius."

He took his hand away, slowly, and Sirius released his wrist. They were both breathing hard, Sirius' eyes flicking over him uncertainly.

In a single, fluid move, Sirius brought his hands up to Remus' face, pinning him in place as he kissed him deeply and thoroughly, fierce and angry in its violence. Remus, stunned, nevertheless leaned forward eagerly into it, as Sirius' hands slid down his neck, one dropping to his waist to pull him close. It was familiar and right and good, and Remus didn't care that they'd left things unresolved, because it didn't matter.

They stumbled backwards until Remus' hips caught on the kitchen counter, Remus buried in the warmth of his embrace -- the stiffness in his spine fading away, righteous indignation melting. Sirius was still fierce, gripping him tightly, teeth latching onto the sensitive skin of his jaw, his neck...

He moaned and pushed Sirius away from the counter, trying to guide him into the living room, where there were fewer sharp edges to dig into his back. They tumbled to the rug on the living room floor, and Sirius straddled him, hands on his shoulders, head bent over his collarbone, nimble teeth undoing the buttons on his shirt.

"You see," Remus gasped, as Sirius slid his thighs down until their erections rubbed together under their trousers, "we fit, Sirius...girls don't fit right -- nobody fits right but you -- "

Sirius growled and arched, hips moving rhythmically, hands now sliding under the half-undone shirt to stroke across Remus' ribcage, fingers as always slipping into the ridges and valleys of his body, finding the tight stretch of his stomach and skating his fingers over it, following with his lips and tongue.

Remus, head thrown back against the soft persian carpet, fingers tangling in Sirius' silky hair, felt that perhaps he ought to encourage Lily's affectionate flirtation, if this was the end result.

Then all thoughts of Lily, James, flats, betrayal, and lies went out of his head, as Sirius nuzzled and bit and kissed his way back into Remus Lupin's heart.


Remus wasn't expecting anything particular when he arrived home that night. It was raining, and it was a Thursday. Thursdays were possibly the least special day of the week, he felt, and quite unromantic. Especially after having spent the day waiting tables and tending bar. He felt that, unless one was doing it intentionally, in which case it was very literary, wasting one's potential in menial jobs was also quite unromantic.

Sirius, of course, had enough to support them both, but Remus wasn't quite certain that it was a good idea to live off someone else. In his experience, depending on others led only to trouble. It made Sirius furious, of course, but that was all right. The way their fights usually ended, making Sirius furious had become something of a pleasurable hobby of his.

So he was surprised to open the door and, in the middle of shaking off his coat, notice that the flat was illuminated only by candlelight. There was a thick pillar candle on the hall table, giving him enough light to see by as he shed his soaked shoes and damp socks, undid the top collar of his crisp white shirt, and hung up his jacket.

There was flickering light in the kitchen and he followed it, stepping into the warm embrace of the cosy room, heated by the oven and the presence of Sirius, who was bending over the sink.

"What's all this?" Remus asked, amused. There were orange slices on a plate next to Sirius' elbow, and he picked one up, popping it into his mouth. Sirius turned, bringing them into pleasantly close proximity, and held out a glass of wine. Remus blinked, a little surprised, and took it, sipping slowly.

"I thought you might like dinner," Sirius said, in a low voice. Remus cocked his head. It wasn't like Sirius to be romantic. It wasn't like him to cook. It certainly wasn't like him to cook romantically.

"All right, what did you break?" Remus asked, with a smile. Sirius leaned forward and licked a little of the orange's juice off the corner of his mouth.

"Nothing," he said. "How's the wine?"

"Sweet," Remus replied, taking another sip. "Really, Sirius, what are you on about?"

Sirius wrapped an arm around his waist and pulled him close. He used his other hand to feed him another slice of orange. Definitely un-Sirius-like behaviour.

"You are Sirius, aren't you?" Remus asked.

"You act like I didn't even know you liked oranges," Sirius answered. "Come on, I've got a fantastic dinner warming..."

He led Remus into the little dining nook of their shared flat, and waved him into a chair. All of his favourite foods -- orange-glazed chicken, mashed potatoes, yorkshire puddings. Sirius detested potatoes in all forms. Either he'd broken something or shagged someone.

Remus watched him over two short, fat candles, as they ate and discussed their day. An idea dawned on him, and he spent four mouthfuls of mashed potato on it before he felt he ought to bring it up.

"All this," he said, and Sirius looked up from his wine sharply. It was his third glass, and Sirius was not a drinking man. "This wouldn't be because of James and Lily, would it?"

"I don't know what you're talking about," Sirius said, but his voice cracked and his eyes cut away.

"The fidelius charm. You performed it today, didn't you?"

Sirius stabbed viciously at his chicken. "Might have done," he muttered.

"Bit anxious about it?"

"Maybe," Sirius continued.

"I'm frightened too, you know," Remus said. "I don't like you being a target. And I don't like going into hiding any more than you do, but you know we've got to do it soon. We're too close."

Sirius nodded miserably.

"Reckon we ought to make Peter ours?" Remus continued. "Or maybe Emmeline Vance -- she's nice -- or Alastor Moody'd do it."

"Reckon so," Sirius replied. "Let's not talk about it."

Remus blinked. He sipped his wine -- still the first glass -- mildly. "All right. I'm done, are you? Shall I?"

Sirius waved him off and cleared the table with a flick of his wand, sending the dishes into the kitchen magically. Remus was just standing when Sirius caught him around the waist again, pulled him close, and kissed him, a little more roughly than he normally did.

As if by kissing me he could stop thinking about them, Remus thought, but any excuse to kiss Sirius was a fine one. They'd been so distant lately -- they'd had to be, what with the Order and Sirius' involvement with the fidelius, and him working days and Sirius spending his nights on Order business. Perhaps too distant.

Remus let himself be tugged into the bedroom, glad of whatever whim had put Sirius into this mood. He unbuckled Sirius' belt while the other man kissed his way over his shoulders, pushing his shirt off as he went. Remus pulled him close, preventing Sirius from fully undressing him, and laid his head on his shoulder, feeling the pulse of the black-haired man, the hammer of his heart, the shallow breath. He tasted wine on Sirius' tongue, felt slightly clumsy fingers slide over his hip and thigh, moaned into Sirius when the pleasant pressure on his groin became too much.

He fell backwards onto the bed, Sirius on top of him, writhing, as though he wanted to touch everywhere it was possible to touch. They rolled until Remus ended up on top, removing Sirius' shirt by the simple expedient of sliding his hands up his chest until the shirt slid with them. Sirius watched him with dark, expressionless eyes that held a fear which Remus, unknowing, took for desire.

Their hips ground together, and Remus drew a sudden, hitching breath. He saw Sirius smile, and the next time he tried to breathe, he found himself unable to think coherently in the slightest.

They struggled out of the rest of their clothes in a mess of limbs and gasps and soft caresses, skilled on Remus' part, slightly clumsy and drunken on Sirius'. Still, there was nothing at all the matter with his body, the broad, muscular build the same as always, intimately familiar. Or with his voice, as he called Remus' name, begged him for things that didn't need to be spoken. Remus, head bowed over Sirius' thigh, eyes adoring, still unable to believe his luck even after four years, didn't need to be asked. He lapped gently at Sirius' head, breathed warm air over it, spoke words against the sensitive skin.

He loved Sirius. He wanted Sirius to be happy. Sirius was -- oh, he liked that? Did that please you, Sirius? Then just think about this...

He felt Sirius' pulse again, this time against his tongue, in the desperate thrust and buck of Sirius in his mouth. Sirius clutched at his shoulders, moved helplessly underneath him. He liked the point at which Sirius lost control -- it was a power he rarely exercised, and all the more pleasurable for that.

When Sirius whined high in his throat, Remus leaned back, a satisfied smile on his face. Sirius moaned and reached for him, cupping his head and pulling him up for a kiss.

Remus could have spent his whole life lying atop Sirius' solid, warm body, but Sirius obviously had other ideas, and the subtle shift and press of his body against Remus, his hands holding Remus' thighs, brooked no opposition.

There was something angry in Sirius, Remus had always known that; something irretrievably furious at the world. He kept a tight rein on it, but sometimes it showed, and Remus could see it in the way Sirius was trying to take him over, trying to own him. Remus was safe enough in himself that he could allow it, though he was afraid some day Sirius would go too far.

Perhaps tonight. Sirius was -- desperate. For something. Remus let himself be covered by Sirius' body, let himself open to Sirius, let Sirius do as he needed, because that was what you did when you loved someone...

He woke alone.

And the next afternoon, Sirius was captured and sent to Azkaban.

It was unsurprising, in a way.


Chapter 2: Love/Suicide

The letter was delivered by a cockatoo, who ruffled her crest in a pleased sort of way when Remus took the slip from her claws and poured out a bowl of water for her. She took sunflower seeds, too, cracking them with her beak and swallowing them, while Remus sat at the table in the tiny rented flat and stared down at the ragged parchment in his hands.

He'd known a letter from Sirius was coming -- well, he'd hoped it was, anyhow. He didn't blame Sirius for not writing sooner. At least, he told himself he didn't. After all, when he was on the run from Azkaban, he hadn't known Remus was at Hogwarts. He hadn't known whether Remus would take any letter he received straight to the authorities.

A small, rebellious voice -- the same one that had told him it was wrong of Sirius and James to torment Snape so, all those years past -- said that Sirius had gone to the trouble of sending Harry a racing broomstick, which must have been distinctly complicated for a fugitive from Wizarding and Muggle justice alike. He couldn't have been bothered to send an anonymous three lines to his --

To the man he'd --

He couldn't have bothered to explain himself? He couldn't have asked if Remus would help him?

Sirius, had their roles been reversed, would have dropped his life, his reputation, everything he had, to help a fugitive mate. Remus never understood the -- infatuation? No, that was the wrong word -- the adulation Sirius placed on him. Why, of all the people Sirius could have had, did he choose Remus Lupin? Remus had never felt so entirely tied up in a single person, the way Sirius had been. He had loved Sirius, of course he had loved Sirius, but his happiness and his life had not been dependent on Sirius loving him. When Sirius had been taken, Remus had survived.

Those years ago, when Sirius had fed him orange slices and served him wine, he'd been trying not just to apologise for his mistrust but even in his apology, he'd been trying to recover Remus. If he knew Remus was the spy his solution was not to interrogate or imprison but to love him, fiercely, violently, to try to pull him back. Foolish, stupid Sirius.

He realised he was clenching the parchment so tightly it threatened to rip, and set it on the table, smoothing it as the cockatoo chirped to herself over the sunflower seeds.

Sirius had done his twelve years' penance. Why hadn't he written for help?

Because those twelve years were not for you, he thought, and was comforted that he understood Sirius at least that well. Those twelve years were bitter self-punishment for failing James. He couldn't serve time for you until he was out. Because he loved you too much, and his punishment was being able to write to you and yet not doing it. Seeing you and being unable to touch you. His punishment was his knowledge of his own unworthiness.

How incredibly Sirius it all was.

He slit the wax seal on the parchment -- cheap, white wax, probably not sealing wax at all, dripped from a tea-candle. The paper was full from top to bottom with a tight, narrow scrawl that resembled Sirius' handwriting at school as much as a wolfhound resembled a labrador.

A formally informal address. Remus. No "dear", no "Mr." of course, no "Moony". Just a name.

And a greeting. Reassurances that he was fine. Decline to inform where he was, in case the letter went astray. Hoped Remus was well. Had heard a little from Dumbledore. Had sent a letter to Harry. A brief and harrowing account of his flight from Hogwarts with Buckbeak, in case Remus was curious.

All the usual business of two people who had not spoken in some time, catching up on recent events. As a buffer between his name and what was to come. Remus understood.

An apology. An explanation. Guilt, worry, grief. Paragraphs and paragraphs of it. No commas. Remus smiled vaguely at that. He didn't read the words very carefully. He knew what they said.

A plea that Remus write back to him. Repeat of the above apology, condensed.

There was no warmth in the letter, no regard, no love. Not in the words, anyway. They were just words. But in the careful composition, the entire avoidance of affection, Remus could read between the lines and find it. Every gap between letters, every lacking comma, every awkward phrase meant to be precise and unemotional, they all added up to a yearning and a grief so terrible Remus could feel it in his bones.

He wondered if Sirius intended it. Sirius, after all, had been -- was -- a brilliant man. It was not inconceivable that Sirius had meant the letter in precisely that way. He could imagine Sirius bent over it, concentrating smoothly on imbuing every line with a double meaning. A man less well-versed in the art of subtlety than Remus would not have even considered the possibility.

Remus thought long and hard about how to reply. He had always met Sirius' cleverness with a sort of obstinate good-sense, something which always confused Sirius, smart as he was.

Finally, he smiled and rose, drawing a sheet of brown wrapping-paper and a length of twine out of his cupboard. His nimble fingers found what he was searching for, and he wrapped it with surprising deftness, given its shape. He tied the twine into a small handle, and wrote "Sirius" as well as he could on the smooth bits. He lifted the cockatoo onto his hand and offered her the package. She squawked at the weight, but didn't drop it as she soared out the window.

Sirius would not be so foolish as to see the orange as a rebuke, nor would he be idiot enough to think Remus was sending him a care package. He wouldn't understand what the orange meant, but he'd understand the gesture.

Forgiveness, unconditional and complete, a love so deep that betrayal only made it more fierce.


The most recent owl post had arrived long before Padfoot did, and Remus understood Dumbledore's ramblings perfectly; I feel it is dangerous to live alone, and would recommend you acquire a dog, or take in a stray, for protection. A large dog for preference, and one familiar with your ways. Hardly subtle.

He waited patiently. He was between jobs again, and had nothing better to do than sit on the front step of his parents' rambling old house, owned outright and thankfully untaxed (Muggles couldn't tax what they couldn't find, after all). He read the Prophet, wrote letters inquiring about employment, did crosswords, and waited.

It happened on a hot day early in July, during a summer rainstorm which turned the dirt of the pathway to soft soil and made Padfoot's coat gleam blue against the cloudy sky. When Padfoot arrived, Remus smiled and let the dog exhaustedly put his paws on the first step, cold nose lifted inquiringly to his face.

"You're welcome here, Sirius," he said quietly. The dog's tongue lolled out and lapped his chin affectionately, if somewhat hesitantly.

Sirius didn't change until they were inside the house, in Remus' bright, warm yellow kitchen. He was damp, footsore, and looked haggard; he must have come almost the whole way on his own power. Lupin waved him into a chair, brought him water and a towel, and set about preparing food.

"You look well," Sirius said, as Remus bent over the plates. He smiled, wryly.

"You lie well," he replied, softly. "I look like a starving fox. Don't talk if you're tired, there'll be time later."

"I want to talk."

"That's fine, I'll listen. How was your journey?"

"Uneventful. It's amazing how few people will pay any attention at all to a dog running loose."

"You're hungry?"

"Yes. You do look all right."

"Thanks." Remus added rice, carrots, chops of meat, slices of bread to the two plates. A welcome-home feast. No potatoes, he thought amusedly. He flicked his wand, warming them instantly, and carried them to the table.

Sirius ate ravenously but neatly, devouring the bread and carrots first, then the rice, and finally regarding the meat with something like reverence. They took their meal in a comfortable silence -- Sirius was too tired to be discomfited by anything, and Remus was disposed to be hospitable.

After the first hesitant letter and the peculiar return, they'd written -- not frequently, but at least once or twice a month. Sirius knew he had nothing to fear. Remus knew better than to batter his own internal troubles on a man who had traveled miles and suffered years between an imagined betrayal and a less-than-triumphant return.

And so they sat: two men, eating in silence, each trying not to recall other meals, other years, other lives.

Remus spoke first, clearing his throat gently.

"There's a bed made. Dumbledore told me you were coming. I thought you'd have arrived sooner, but..."

"He sent me to raise the Order first," Sirius murmured. Remus lifted his eyebrows in surprise. "Best way to do it quietly. You heard about Voldemort's rise?"

"I had. Dumbledore told me to stay where I his own fashion. So you've been to see them all?"

"Some. Some are in contact with others," Sirius said, talking slowly, as though it wearied him to form the words. His fork drew across his now-empty plate idly. Remus set down his own silverware and stood.

"There's firewhiskey," he continued. "Or if you'd rather sleep..."

Sirius looked up at him, eyes so empty and tired that he seemed childlike despite the weary lines in his face. Remus held out a hand. The exhausted gaze traveled to the outstretched fingers, the smooth, pale palm, the calluses on index finger and thumb where he held a quill. He didn't seem to understand. Remus waited.

Finally, Sirius took the hand with his own, let himself be pulled to his feet and guided down the corridor to a clean, light-filled room.

Remus left him to undress, hearing the damp thumps as robe and shirt were piled on the floor, the slither of a belt being removed. He heard Sirius draw back the covers, and could imagine him tracing a broken-nailed, dry-rough palm over the fresh sheets.

Go to sleep, he willed, as he passed back into the kitchen, washing the dishes by hand. It soothed him. Go to sleep, Sirius.

And don't dream.

It didn't take him long to wash two plates, two glasses, and assorted silverware. He rested his hands on the rim of the sink and stared out the window, across the dark lands, hearing the rain drum on the roof and the windows. Sirius was safe in his home, protected, well-fed. Sirius would not have to worry for many days. He'd keep him here, make sure he had anything he needed.

He walked back down the hallway and found Sirius, indeed asleep, the lines on his face eased by unconsciousness. Remus sat quietly on the edge of the bed and studied him. That was Sirius. Sirius Black. Twelve years ago --

But it was not twelve years ago. Sirius had changed. So had he. Sirius was here, and so was he, and he didn't know what to do other than tell those facts to himself. This was the face of Sirius Black, who was here in Remus Lupin's house. This was a man who needed his shelter. Remus was unaccustomed to taking in stray dogs.

Sirius made a soft noise of protest, sleepily, as he felt another body curl around him; a hand pressed gently over his heart, and after a few seconds' incoherent mumbling, he slipped back into sleep. Remus, smelling rain and good earth and salt skin on the back of his neck, lay awake, remembering the feeling of Sirius' broad warmth against his in another year, when things were not so simple as He is here, and I must care for him.




"Quills -- "

"Oi, forgot to add that."

Sirius, rather than simply letting Remus scratch down "quills" on the shopping list, took it back and did it himself. Remus allowed him; Sirius' habits could be irksome -- worse than irksome -- but Sirius had little enough control over his life or world right now that Remus rather felt he ought to be given some slack with regards to things like adding to the shopping list himself, or escorting Harry to the train.

It was September third, and the house was echoingly empty after the departure of the children. This was the first time Remus had dared to venture out since then; the words in his mind hadn't faded. He is here, and I must care for him.

He knew Sirius would be lonely, lonely and enraged at being pent up again. But one did have to eat, after all, and they were low on quills, and Tonks had broken their kettle beyond Remus' limited ability to fix it. Cost was, for once, not an issue; Sirius, who after all would benefit the most from the expedition, was financing it.

Sirius followed him to the door like...well, one had to face it, like a dog. And stood there until he closed it. And Remus knew he watched him through the window until he passed out of view.

Remus knew from prisons in the head; he'd spent most of his life in one or another, first lying to his friends and then lying to the professors about what his friends were and then lying to himself about everything, really, and finally lying to the world, now that Sirius was in hiding.

But he'd never been in a physical prison, unless you counted locking himself up for the full moon. And, as he didn't really remember most of those nights, it didn't count.

He enjoyed the brisk autumn wind blowing the first golden leaves across his scuffed boots in Diagon Alley, and as usual lifted his head to the breeze, to ignore the stares as he passed, from those who knew what he was. He bought quills and sealing wax, parchment, and two books Sirius had mentioned wanting to read, in Flourish & Blott's; a kitchenwares shop a few doors down (carefully regulated by the Ministry to make sure they sold strictly uncharmed items) provided a new red kettle -- Sirius liked red -- and three boxes of imported tea.

Then there was the food to attend to, butchers and vegetable stands and a nice bit of cheese and some fresh bread. He searched his rusty memory for what Sirius liked, and bought toffee as well, and some maple-sugar sweets for himself.

With only a few Knuts left jangling in his pockets, he carried the various bags full of wrapped packages towards the entrance to Diagon Alley, and the nearby Tube station.

He paused, just outside the Leaky Cauldron on the Muggle side, where a cart-vendor was selling oranges. He had just enough Muggle cash in a forgotten back-pocket to buy one before running to catch the train.

Sirius heard him coming towards the front door and pulled it wide, shifting eagerly from foot to foot until Remus crossed over the threshold. Then he was underfoot, in the way, trying to be helpful and, once more like a big lumbering dog, only succeeding in making Remus drop things, trip over a discarded pair of shoes (they'd have to send Harry those, he'd miss his trainers on his first Hogsmeade trip), and lose control of the shopping bags.

"Books!" Sirius said joyfully, plunging into the Flourish & Blott's bag. He unpacked the various items, hands caressing and exploring each one of them as if they were precious gems. Remus smiled indulgently as he put the food in its proper places. Sirius, having made a mess of everything, picked up the books again and threw himself into a chair. Remus tossed the packet of toffee deftly, and it landed on top of the open book Sirius held in his hands.

"I hope you bought yourself something," Sirius said, around a mouthful.

"Some tea," Remus shrugged. "And a few sweets."

Sirius paused, with another bite halfway to his mouth.

"Were the books for you?" he asked, apologetically. "I just assumed -- "

"No -- no, I thought -- you'd mentioned them -- it's your money -- "

Sirius set the bite down, and moved the paper aside, closing the book. His fingers stroked the cover possessively. Remus had entertained pleasing fantasies of reading them once Sirius was done with them, it was true, but he'd honestly bought them for Sirius.

It was rather sad, he thought, that his fantasy life revolved around the distant opportunity to read other peoples' books.

"I stood at the window the whole time," Sirius said finally. Remus turned, startled.


"I was afraid if I didn't watch the front door you mightn't come back," Sirius said hoarsely, as he stood. "I thought -- I'm not right in the head, you know," he continued, miserably.

"Sirius -- of course you are -- it's just Azkaban, anyone would be -- even after..." Remus found he was incapable of assembling an entire coherent sentence. He'd never been faced with anything quite like this before.

"I had this horrible thought," Sirius was driving relentlessly on, "that maybe I was dead, since there was nobody around who would talk to me, and if I turned around or left the window the house might -- might eat me -- "

Remus was there in two strides, wrapping his arms around Sirius' shoulders, pulling his head down to cradle it in the corner of his neck, making soothing noises deep in his throat.

"I promise you, Sirius," he said, tangling one hand in the long hair that reached past Sirius' shoulders, "that you are not dead. And the house is just a house. It's just a house, Sirius, it's not going to eat you."

"You can leave, you can go anytime you -- "

"But I'm not going to, Sirius." He paused, gauged the tension in Sirius' shoulders, and added lightly, "Besides, the rent's too good to pass up."

Sirius seemed to go slack against him for a minute, and then a deep, hoarse laugh rose in his chest. He leaned away, Remus' arms still around his shoulders, and threw his head back and laughed.

"And," Sirius said, swiping a hand across his face, "I'm tough and bitter. If it did eat me it'd just spit me back out again."

"Sirius..." Remus only meant to pull his chin down a bit so he could make sure his eyes weren't the wild, feral things they'd been that horrible night in the Shrieking Shack, when they'd agreed to kill Peter together. Instead he found Sirius following his motion, down and forward and then Sirius was kissing him.

It was unutterably familiar, and yet at the same time so entirely alien. Like looking through his old memories for the fact that Sirius liked toffee. He was unsure if he properly recalled what kissing Sirius was like.

He was unsure if he cared.

Sirius' mouth was hot and demanding, a sudden surprise (though in retrospect, it shouldn't have been) and completely, entirely arousing. Sirius' body was pressing against his, firm now instead of trembling, warm and enfolding instead of tense. He was being kissed unconscious, he was sure of it, as he could not think to form a single word other than Sirius' name.

And then when Sirius slid his tongue against his lips and into his mouth, when Sirius' arms drew him close, fingers tracing abstract shapes on his back, he managed two more.

"You're real," he whispered, against the corner of Sirius' mouth. "You're real, you're real."

"Remus," Sirius moaned. Three more words.

"Sirius. You're real. I love you."

He was rebuilding himself, slowly, under Sirius' hands and lips and body, which was strange as Sirius had been the one to fear that he was less than a ghost. He wanted to mention this, but unfortunately his mouth was otherwise engaged, re-learning the painfully high arch of Sirius' cheekbone.

So instead he managed to take a step backwards without leaving the circle of Sirius' arms, and slowly lead them, kissing and moaning and touching, through the doorway and into the living room.

He supposed if he'd been really ambitious they could have tried for a bedroom, but Sirius had always been the ambitious one, and Sirius' sole ambition, at this point, seemed to consist of getting his shirt off and --

It had been too long since anyone had touched his bare skin. Especially with such care as Sirius was now taking.

Oh, such care.

He tumbled onto the couch under Sirius' weight, right after Sirius did finally manage the shirt manoeuver. His breath whooshed out of him.

"You're real..." he managed. "And heavy..."

"Shut up," Sirius said, muffled against his collarbone. His silky black hair brushed the bare skin of Remus' chest, as he moved over the smooth contours of his body. Remus had intended, a split second ago, that he probably ought to be the one doing most of the...well, the doing, as it were, since Sirius was the one who'd been having delusions that a house was going to eat him but oh, Sirius, that's good discretion being the better part of valour he ought to let me help -- ummm let Sirius do whatever the hell he please...please...

And then Sirius' mouth slid over his cock and the world and all thoughts of ought or should spun shatteringly away.

Sirius had been gone so long and resurrected so suddenly and he was so fragile that even with his solid, firm weight -- with his hands sliding down Remus' hips to grip his thighs -- Remus was afraid to move too much, afraid to push too far lest Sirius break.

After all, he thought, as Sirius' warm, careful attention drove him blind with pleasure, he'd already fallen...

He protested wordlessly when Sirius moved, the wonderful slick warmth of his mouth withdrawn. Sirius was sitting up, and he propped himself on his elbows on the tattered couch, suddenly concerned.

Sirius' eyes were dark, his mouth slightly open, breath short and fast.

"In the dreams it always ends -- " he said, in a frantic whisper. "In the dreams it always -- "

Remus struggled up, hands pulling Sirius towards him by the collar until he was once again covered with the anxious warmth of his body. He kissed Sirius into silence and held their foreheads together, hands on the back of Sirius' head.

"It isn't a dream," he whispered. Sirius' lips were hungry on his skin, and his hands strayed from the sleek black hair downward, over his shoulders, the small of his back. Their hips slid together and yes -- there it was.

How they fit.

Oh, how they fit.

"This is real, here and now," he moaned, as Sirius thrust against him, growling almost ferally. "Sirius -- "

"Not a dream," Sirius said into his shoulder, and Remus held him as they shivered and gasped together, easing back eventually, stroking Sirius' hair with affectionate hands.

"When you go I wonder if I'm real," Sirius murmured. Remus, grave and worried, despite the pleasurable lassitude in his limbs, kissed his temple.

"Then I won't go," he promised. "Unless I have to."


The living room was covered, every inch of it. Sirius was in riotous heaven.

Remus, a tidy man by nature, had given in to the fact that Sirius, if let, would sprawl himself, his belongings, and any items local to the area over the widest possible space. He didn't recall this as a particular habit at school, and certainly he would have remembered Sirius doing this to their flat, so he could only guess it had something to do with twelve years in a small cell without any belongings to speak of.

He had, on Sirius' request, brought home catalogues from all the major shops in Diagon Alley, as well as a Daily Prophet and two Muggle Sunday editions. Sirius had ignored the Prophet -- who wasn't, these days? -- except for the crossword and the colourful advert inserts. He'd taken these and the adverts from the Muggle papers, along with the catalogues, and liberally strewn the room with them. The crosswords from all three papers were stacked neatly near his elbow.

"I leave the room for ten minutes..." Remus sighed, carrying two cups of tea and a plate of buttered bread into the middle of the mess and shoving a pile of torn catalogue pages off the couch before seating himself. Sirius, on the floor, accepted the tea and ignored the criticism.

"Do you think he wants a new broomstick?" he asked instead.

"Harry? I shouldn't think so. I imagine he practically sleeps with the one he's got now," Remus replied. "His first gift from you, plus it's a Firebolt."

"What about playing gloves? Those old Hogwarts gloves used to creak something awful."

"Christmas shopping, are we?" Remus asked, amused. Sirius scowled briefly.

"Not as though I can walk down the street and buy it myself," he grumbled.

"Yes, I've been meaning to ask you how you managed to get the money from your Gringott's account and place the Firebolt order in the first place, without having your name attached to it."

Sirius shrugged. "If there's one thing you learn, as a Black, it's how to put aside money. I had some under another name. Gave the company my account number when I made the order, using Crookshanks. They weren't best pleased to be taking purchase orders from a cat, but my money's as good as the next man's."

"Good old Crookshanks." Remus nodded thoughtfully, and picked up one of the torn-out pages.

"Denon's Demessifying Oil," he mused.

"For hair," Sirius answered.

"Harry'd look like a plucked hedgehog with this," Remus observed.

"I'll thank you not to talk about my godson like that," Sirius grinned.

Remus shook his head and said, gravely, "It is my duty, Sirius, to be truthful with you at all times. Helps improve your parenting ability."

"My parenting skills do not need improving! I don't remember you ever changing his diaper."

"No, I only taught him the Patronus spell that saved your sorry hide."

Sirius leaned back against the couch, resting his head against Remus' knee. "All right. Put it on the discard pile."

Remus regarded the paper-strewn room thoughtfully. Sirius sighed.

"On the chair," he said. Remus let the page drift down onto a small stack of creased and crumpled ads.

"Do you suppose he wants one of those Muggle things? A..." Sirius frowned at the picture in his hands. "A video game?"

"I shouldn't think so. He's never been much interested in them. What about one of these...snitch...bags?" he added, passing another torn sheet over. Sirius studied it.

"I don't think he wants a book-bag with wings on it," he said finally. "Would you have been caught dead with little gold dancing snitches on your bag when you were fifteen?"

"Reckon not," Remus said with a shudder, throwing it quickly on the discard pile. He knew that he should leave Sirius to puzzle this out on his own, but his innate cleanliness suggested the living room would get cleaner, faster, if he could help Sirius decide.

They quickly worked their way through new Quidditch things -- he'd probably get Quidditch stuff from his friends -- and most Muggle items. Sirius was taken with the idea of a Muggle camera that took only still photos, but Remus pointed out he'd have to pay developing fees and whatnot. A motorbike was quickly vetoed by Kingsley Shacklebolt, who was passing through on his way out the door, though the twins put in their votes for it as they followed him.

Potions supplies were smelly and not at all what one wanted for Christmas. Ditto clothing (well, perhaps not the smelly part). Besides, Harry always got a Weasley jumper from Molly. Who also sent him sweets, thus ruling that out. And he was really growing too old for toys.

"Maybe..." Sirius said hesitantly. "Maybe it's just that I...don't really know what he wants. You know him. You spent all year with him."

"He writes to you," Remus reminded him. "He tells you things. I'm still his teacher, sort of. know..."

Sirius glanced up at him. Remus worried his lower lip.

"I've always thought that caring for children was not so much about giving them what they wanted, but giving them what they needed."

"Well, what're you getting him?"

Remus leaned forward, elbows on his knees. "I...thought I'd...offer him some tutoring," he said lamely. "And send a nice card. Something he can hang with his pictures over his bed."

Sirius paused.

"Listen, you money's your money," he offered.

"No, Sirius, it's not."

"But it's Harry," Sirius pointed out. "It's not as though it's for you."

"It doesn't matter."

"Is it heavy?"


"All that pride."

Remus swatted Sirius in the back of the head. "Smartarse."

"Well, all right then, help me. What does Harry need?"

Remus pondered.

"Dark Arts," he said finally. "He liked Defence against the Dark Arts. I think. And now he's teaching it and all."

"What does a Defence professor need?" Sirius asked.

"His head examined," Remus answered reservedly.

"No argument here." Sirius picked up the shredded remains of the Flourish & Blott's catalogue. "Maybe one of those spinny-top things that tells you when someone's being treacherous."

"Ron gave him one two years ago, I think," Remus said absently. "Here, you've missed one..."

"Nah, that's the rare-books section of this one," Sirius said, waving the Flourish & Blott's dissected remains. Remus paged through it, idly.

"What about this?" he asked quietly, offering it to Sirius, who read the page dubiously before smiling.

"Perfect," he said. "Well done, Moony. We'll send it from both of us."

"Sirius -- "

"Well, either we can send it from both of us or I'll send it from both of us anyway and Harry will be confused as to why you also sent him a card," Sirius said. He hauled himself up onto the couch, crushing some papers as he did so.

Remus felt Sirius' shoulder against his shoulder, thigh against his thigh, hip against hip. Once it would have sent a sharp, aroused tingle down his spine. Now it made him feel safe, something infinitely more satisfying.

"All right," he agreed. "From us."


It wasn't until a month after Sirius fell through the arch that Remus started hallucinating.

At first he thought it was just the natural result of looking for Sirius and not finding him. The same thing had happened after James and Lily were killed; he would find himself sometimes halfway to their home in Godric's Hollow before he remembered they weren't there, and once he'd got all the way there before the shock of seeing an empty plot where the Potter house used to exist reminded him what had happened.

He'd call out for Sirius in the mornings, sometimes. Once he'd spent ten minutes waiting for the shower before realising Sirius wasn't in it.

Sirius wasn't ever going to be in it again.

Or in the kitchen.

Or in his bed.

So this time, though it was fourteen years later, he remembered last time and prepared himself. It was a different sort of grief, of course, a cleaner, purer sorrow, but it was still similar enough as made no difference.

He didn't remember actually having seen Sirius before, though.

The first time, he woke up in the wide bed of his room, under the old, eternally dusty-smelling sheets, and reached out instinctively for Sirius' solid weight.

His arm closed briefly around a thin waist, covered in flannel.

He leaned into what he was sure was the reassuring warmth of a sleeping Sirius, and found himself rolling facedown onto the other half of the bed, so suddenly that it woke him fully and made his heart pound.

He brushed the hair out of his eyes, propped himself up to look around, and then sighed, dropping his head.

Just a dream.

Two weeks later he was making tea -- automatically making two cups, since English Breakfast was Sirius' favourite -- and he saw Sirius out of the corner of his eye, walking into the kitchen and settling into a seat at the table. He turned to offer the tea to Sirius --

And faced an empty dinner chair.

Odd that it was pulled out -- he must have seen that and thought it was Sirius.

Later the same day he was climbing the stairs, and Sirius passed him going down, hand brushing his hip to guide them past each other with a familiarity that made him smile --

Until he turned to empty air, meaning to ask a question, and found himself alone on the stair.

He swallowed.

He had felt Sirius' hand on his hip. He had seen him the way one sees a familiar form out of the corner of the eye -- vague, but still in enough detail to easily identify it.

The next morning he woke with Sirius in bed with him. He lay still, breathing lightly, staring at Sirius' sleeping face.

It's not real, he thought. He squeezed his eyes shut tight, then opened them again.

Sunlight on black hair.

Sirius is dead.

He tried again, closed his eyes and opened them, and this time he found the bed as it ought to (no, it oughtn't, but life wasn't fair) look -- rumpled blankets, untouched pillow, dust on the headboard.

He rolled over on his back and covered his face in his hands. This hadn't happened last time.

And the more he fought it, the more it happened, anywhere, at any time -- like Banquo's ghost, Sirius would appear at dinner to take a seat meant for Ron. He dropped two dishes trying to hand them to Sirius while doing the washing-up one night.

The night he saw Sirius, leaning over the chair Harry was studying in and smiling at his godson -- the night Sirius looked up from his contemplation of Harry to smile warmly at Remus, his eyes dancing with pleasure -- Remus decided he might possibly be going insane.

Part Two

[identity profile] 2005-12-06 12:11 am (UTC)(link)
wow. I'm speachless. Really, just- wow.

[identity profile] 2006-01-01 06:44 pm (UTC)(link)
Ergh. Bloody hell, Sam. Evertime I think I've read the best of what you've written, I come across something else that makes my jaw drop. I wish I had your talent. Onto the next part.

it took me a while...

[identity profile] 2006-01-02 08:11 pm (UTC)(link)
... to be able to comment.

you're pieces tend to be... overpowering... overwhelming.


[identity profile] 2006-01-10 04:54 am (UTC)(link)
first, i love edwin. and i love this song, especially. so lots of love there.

second, oh, the heartbreak. must keep reading, although i know how it goes. so sad.

(Anonymous) 2007-06-17 08:48 am (UTC)(link)
i'm amazed.
that is a very powerful fic. makes me feel awful. *sigh* very well done.

[identity profile] 2007-06-17 12:48 pm (UTC)(link)
Thank you! You know there's a second part, yes?

[identity profile] 2007-07-23 10:53 pm (UTC)(link)
God, yes. I remember. *sniff* I read this ages ago, and then lost it with the big Computer Crash of 2003. *sighs* Well, at least I found it once again.

And yes, you break my heart in teeny tiny pieces. But that's nothing new.

[identity profile] 2007-09-12 12:45 pm (UTC)(link)
(There was something angry in Sirius, Remus had always known that; something irretrievably furious at the world. He kept a tight rein on it, but sometimes it showed, and Remus could see it in the way Sirius was trying to take him over, trying to own him. Remus was safe enough in himself that he could allow it, though he was afraid some day Sirius would go too far.

Perhaps tonight. Sirius was -- desperate. For something. Remus let himself be covered by Sirius' body, let himself open to Sirius, let Sirius do as he needed, because that was what you did when you loved someone...

He woke alone.

And the next afternoon, Sirius was captured and sent to Azkaban.

It was unsurprising, in a way.)

That rocked, so did the part with the non-trusting and the kissing.

[identity profile] 2007-11-12 05:06 pm (UTC)(link)
Awww...So sad,so beautiful and so deep. I loved it.

[identity profile] 2008-11-03 05:34 am (UTC)(link)
Oh, that hurt. I think I'll need some time to recover before heading to the next chapters...

It's like when you know something is off, that life's not right at all and yet both parties so desperately want to believe that it is and so life goes on but only until it stops--

Um, basically, brilliantly written. I will never understand how you manage to sweep a reader into a story so effortlessly.

And I've been drifting through your fic lately, and I must commend you for how wonderfully thinky it is... Seriously, I love the pure intellectual content of some of your writing.

Sam, never cease to amaze us! :D

[identity profile] 2009-02-06 08:58 pm (UTC)(link)
This is brilliant. Sirius not being a drinking man is unusual, but it works well.

[identity profile] 2009-04-26 02:15 am (UTC)(link)
I think physixxx said it very well, back in 2006: "your pieces tend to be... overpowering... overwhelming."

I felt a stab in my chest at those last lines and I think it'll take me a bit before I can move on to the next part. Ouch.

[identity profile] 2009-09-29 08:05 pm (UTC)(link)
oh wow. :(

I'll Be

(Anonymous) 2010-09-05 08:46 pm (UTC)(link)
I just heard I'll Be on the radio and was thoroughly reminded of this fantastic story. I feel like that song will forever be connected to remus/sirius for me now...

[identity profile] 2011-01-16 08:13 pm (UTC)(link)
Almost tearing up, definitely sniffling at the end of this half. So good! So sweet! And I love how you cover their entire history in moments. So beautiful to get a sweeping view. Especially the night just before everything goes to hell.