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mezzopianoforte in rs_small_gifts

FIC: The Beginning of Something Old for moonlitelupins

Title: The Start of Something Old
Author: mezzopianoforte
Recipient: moonlitelupines
Rating: PG-13
Highlight for Warnings: *swearing *
Word Count: 1940
Summary: In which there is late-night-kissing, passing queer friends the gravy, an inadvertent de-closeting and the start of a relationship.
Author's notes: Thanks so much,molsymo, for the fantastic beta job! And moonlitelupines, I really hope you like this :) Art is at the end of the fic. One last thing: sorry to the mods for messing up my first post!

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The Beginning

November was a horrible month, especially when it was raining hard enough to bend the weaker trees.

“Remus, can you help meee,” Sirius whined. It wasn’t really a question; he knew Remus would help him because he always had. Sirius was hanging over the sofa with his fingers creeping along Remus’ forearms, making him shiver imperceptibly. It was a different sort of relationship to that of Sirius’ and James. The two of them wrestled, clapped each other on the back, and pulled each others’ hair. Remus and Sirius had never been as comfortable with physical playing; it felt a little off, somehow.

“Help you with what?” Remus said, feeling doomed and sensing a pleasant evening slipping away from him. “I bet it’s homework that you’ve not done and is due in tomorrow.”

“My Charms essay,” Sirius admitted. “I don’t know what to write.”

“Why don’t you ask James?” Remus suggested hopefully, even though he knew it was a lost cause because James would be at Quidditch tryouts or trying to cajole Peter into volunteering for a beard-growing charm.

“James isn’t here,” Sirius pointed out, “and you are. And you’ll have done it, like, three days ago. And James hasn’t. I looked in his trunk.”

“I did do it on Monday,” Remus admitted, smiling reluctantly and rolling his eyes at the way Sirius’ face brightened. “You should do it by yourself; you’re miles better at Charms than me.” It was true: no matter how galling it was, Sirius never worked at his charms and they were miles better than Remus’.

Sirius elegantly vaulted over the sofa and sat next to him, grinning widely. “No, Remus, I’m not.” He laughed at something secret and it sounded like summer. When he looked up at Remus again, almost questioningly, they both flushed and their gazes sprang apart like the opposite ends of two magnets.

Sirius looked quickly out of the window. “A storm’s coming,” he said, face hidden.

Remus agreed, but he wasn’t quite sure what sort of storm it would be.

*
“Think I might like Remus,” Sirius mumbled to James in December, his eyes on the floor.

“We all like Remus,” James said, with a mouth full of lunch.

Sirius stayed quiet, but two bright pink spots appeared on his cheeks and James’ eyes widened, his mouth open. Sirius viciously comforted himself with the thought that James looked ridiculous when he was shocked.

“Caught on, have you?” Sirius said, snappish in his anxiety. He bit his lip – a most common habit, according to his mother.

Right,” James breathed. He hadn’t blinked for over a minute. It was disconcerting. You look like a fish, Sirius thought. “You and Remus?” He made an odd little hand gesture as though trying to fit it all together in his mind.

“Well, no,” said Sirius, “there’s no me and Remus. Just, me. And Remus.”

“Right,” James said again, staring some more. “But – you want there to be a you-and-Remus sort of thing?”

“Yes,” Sirius agreed, feeling it would be counter-productive to lie.

“Does – does he want that?”

“No,” Sirius said shortly, “and can you shut up about it now, I feel like a fucking pansy with all this talking about my feelings, and everything.”

“Fine!” James said, sounding startled. “You brought it up, but – fine!” And he went back to his food.

It was a mark of their imperturbable friendship, Sirius thought later, that no one had asked But are you okay with this? or But you know I’m okay with this, don’t you?? Of course James was all right with it and of course Sirius knew that. They didn’t need to discuss it – it would never have been anything else but okay.

*

“Pass your queer friend the gravy, Peter,” Sirius commanded, fully expecting his friends to understand this as a nice, understated de-closeting.

He had considered the possibility of keeping closeted, but in the end, he’d decided against it. For one thing, he could hardly get a decent shag if no one knew he was looking for a boy. For the other, he’d rather tell everyone himself than have it come out like some hideous, shameful secret from other people.

Sirius almost topped out of his seat when Peter nonchalantly passed the gravy to Remus Bloody Lupin.

“What the hell?” Sirius said indignantly. “Moony?

Remus was determinedly not looking at any of them. He was squirming in his seat slightly (which made Sirius want to make him squirm for a different reason) and his fork had fallen to his plate with a clatter.

“Moony!” Sirius repeated, slapping the table and making the cutlery dance. “Are you-?”

“Queer?” Remus snapped sharply. “Does it matter, really? I like girls. I-” He swallowed. “I like – boys.” Sirius got the distinct impression that Remus had stopped himself from saying what – or who – he really liked.

“I can’t believe you didn’t tell me,” Sirius hissed, “and I can’t believe Peter knew before me! When did you tell him? Does James know?” His anger surprised him, and he knew it was misplaced, but he felt so hurt at the fact that Remus hadn’t told him something so important.

“Well he knows now,” Remus said stiffly, “but no, I didn’t tell him. Only Peter.”

“Why didn’t you tell me?” Sirius asked, hurt.

He saw James and Peter exchanging meaningful looks. He flushed a dark, angry red, and heard Remus snap “We are not having this conversation now, Sirius!” He swept out of the hall, forgetting all his books.

*

Later that night – technically, early in the morning - Sirius tiptoed into Remus’ bed and gingerly shook him awake. The marauders had been climbing into each others’ beds since they were twelve years old without much thought, particularly James and Sirius. For some reason, however, Sirius felt a little uncomfortable that night, and he could tell from the expression on Remus’ face and the way that he drew his knees up to his chest that he felt the same. All Sirius wanted to do was to envelop him in a huge, comforting hug.

“What is it, Sirius?” Remus sighed, blinking in his tiredness.

“I wanted to say sorry,” mumbled Sirius dejectedly, hanging his head. “I – overreacted, you could say. About what you said earlier. Wasn’t your fault.”

Remus nodded slowly, but he looked curious rather than angry. “What was it?” he asked, head cocked to one side.

“It’s just that – I wanted to tell you lot, especially you, that I’m – I think I might be, as well,” Sirius said in a rush, ineloquent as Remus was prone to making him. “And I think I like someone, and, well, I think he’s you.”

As love declarations went, it wasn’t particularly smooth.

Remus let out a whoosh of air and drew his legs even closer to his chest. “I see,” he said.
Sirius blinked. “Is that it?” he demanded. “‘I see’?” He eyed Remus with a dreadful longing: Why wasn’t Remus doing what he wanted him to? Why wasn’t he saying, “Oh Sirius, I’m so glad – let’s be together forever and ever, amen.”

“You really like me?” Remus asked, and was it only Sirius’ desperate imagination or did Remus actually sound slightly breathless, slightly hopeful? Was Remus scuttling slightly closer, or was that just Sirius finally going completely mental?

“What do you think?” Sirius whispered, his hand moving an inch towards Remus’.

“I know what I’d like you to tell me,” Remus murmured, bringing his knee down and allowing it to fall next to Sirius’.

They were very close together, now; Sirius could have moved an inch and touched their noses together (and he wanted to, very much). He decided to go one better, and, snaking an arm around Remus’ neck, he kissed him, slowly and sweetly. It wasn’t a very Sirius-ish kiss; there were no tongues and there was no groping. It was better than that. It was pretty great, for all its briefness and chasteness.
What could be better, then, than doing it again? And harder, deeper, that time, with Remus climbing on top of Sirius as though he couldn’t get close enough. Remus pulled off his pyjama shirt and wound his fingers in Sirius’ hair and all Sirius could do was think Oh my God, oh my God, this is really happening and kiss him back fiercely, with equal need.

They fell back onto the pillow that Remus had been sleeping on, Sirius’ legs wound around Remus’ body.
“Am I hurting you?” he managed, breaking off the searing kiss for a moment.

“Fuck no,” Remus snorted, sucking on Sirius’ neck, making him gasp and dig his fingernails desperately into Remus’ back.

When Sirius walked back to his bed in a haze of dizzy, saturated joy, he laughed happily to himself under the covers until James awoke and told him to shut up.
*

Photobucket

At Hogwarts, the staff dressed up the trees outside with baubles in the house colours. In their sixth year, James and Sirius had turned them all red and charmed them to say “Slytherins are wankers!” Professor McGonagall had had a sudden attack of short-sightedness whilst walking past James standing on Sirius’ shoulders, perfecting the charm.

When it was cold and snowy and most people were playing with charmed snowballs, Sirius dragged Remus to the more quiet spots in the grounds for some quality time, which mainly comprised of snogging in awkward positions due to their massive, bulky scarves. Sirius hadn’t the time to charm any baubles this year: his time was taken up by Remus’ soft mouth and gentle tongue.

Remus leaned over to Sirius and kissed him on his cold-stained cheek. “Your nose is all red,” he said breathlessly, holding Sirius’ face in his mitten-clad hands.

“It’s cold,” Sirius said stupidly, smiling. It might have been the cold weather that made his brain go all fuzzy and hopeless, but it was equally likely to have been the proximity to Remus and how his hands were still cradling Sirius’ face so gently.

“Look,” Sirius said, pointing to the snow-covered ground with the hand that wasn’t gripping Remus’. “It’s growing. I thought plants never grew in winter.”

“Lots of things grow in winter,” Remus said. “They’re just resting. They’re not dead; they’re green on the inside,” he added, frowning slightly.
*
The Beginning of Something Old
Photobucket
July: end of seventh year. It was terribly hot and Remus was wearing his slightly-too-big shirt. His skinny wrists stuck out from the sleeves like threads. His hair had new blond streaks, bleached from spending so much time outside with Sirius, James and Peter during the last few golden, hazy weeks.

Remus and Sirius liked sneaking out to fields and woods and hills and kissing for hours. They kissed until their jaws were too sore to talk properly, and they were late for everything, and they were tired and their arms ached. But they were happy and that had to count for something. It was a quiet and peaceful sort of happiness - not a kind that either of them was used to.

No one could be bothered to do much, anyway. Everyone was so languid when the heat rose. Even James, on a hot Sunday afternoon, had raised his wand, pointed it feebly at Snape and ended up laying it back down on his stomach with a defeated little sigh. “It’s no good,” he’d said. “Even Snivellus is slightly less of an arse when it’s like this.”

“I don’t know what I’m going to do when I leave,” Remus sighed, leaning into Sirius.

“That’s easy,” said Sirius, grinning lazily down at him. “You’re going to be with me, and it’s going to be brilliant.

The kiss that followed felt like a promise.

Comments

Oh. *breath whooshes out* Oh, oh my, this just makes me smile so hard my cheeks ache. How beautifully your art accompanies the fic! I love your characterization, the way Peter nonchalantly passes the gravy to Remus without thinking about it, the way Sirius gets hurt over Remus not having told him first that he is gay. And the apology from Sirius, and them getting together... ♥ It's so very lovely and the ending is so very hopeful. What a beautiful fic to sigh over this evening! :D

Finally, I love the contrast between your two pieces of art, the winter cold in one and the lazy warmth in the other. The changing of seasons is a sweet touch to their relationship, how they develop through the years and how they will always stay together even from the end of the fic.

So nicely done, what a great fic-and-art in one! ♥
aww I'm glad you liked it! <3 thanks for the lovely comments
Dude, that scene when Peter passed the gravy to Remus made me laugh so hard :) Peter is awesome!
haha I'm glad :D thank you <3
aren't they! <3
That was the best coming out ever. Poor Sirius had his thunder stolen, but also in a very good way. Lovely, thanks!
haha, he recovered pretty quickly from having his thunder stolen, I am sure ;) glad you liked it!
“Pass your queer friend the gravy, Peter,” Sirius commanded, fully expecting his friends to understand this as a nice, understated de-closeting.

I laughed so hard at that!!! Great fic. And the art is lovely, too. :D
thank you! :)
Lovely art! The winter one is my fav, I think. :) And Sirius' attempt at coming out was hilarious! I loved those last few lines the most though. Just gorgeous!
thank you =)
hahaha, I did like writing the coming out scene! happy you liked it :)
thank you :)
First of all, you are totally awesome for your mix of beautiful art (loved them both, but especially the first one) and clever story. Second of all, you did both beautifully.

That was the most brilliantly awkward coming out scene ever!

“Pass your queer friend the gravy, Peter,” Sirius commanded, fully expecting his friends to understand this as a nice, understated de-closeting.

He had considered the possibility of keeping closeted, but in the end, he’d decided against it. For one thing, he could hardly get a decent shag if no one knew he was looking for a boy. For the other, he’d rather tell everyone himself than have it come out like some hideous, shameful secret from other people.

Sirius almost topped out of his seat when Peter nonchalantly passed the gravy to Remus Bloody Lupin.

“What the hell?” Sirius said indignantly. “Moony?”


I felt so sorry for both of them! But it all worked well in the end, did it not?

Well done!
thank you! and yes, it did indeed work out beautifully in teh end for them :D
Oh, this is so gorgeous. I loved the silly awkward boys, and Sirius's failed coming out scene, and McGonagall's attack of shortsightedness. ♥
Oops, hit post too soon! I didn't even get to the art, which is beautiful! I love the winter one especially.
Wow! &hearts moonlitelupins is one lucky fangirl! As everyone has noted, "Pass your queer friend the gravy, Peter" is going to be a classic "coming out" scene that people will be searching for in accio_rs_fics years from now! But I really liked Sirius' earlier coming out scene with James.

It was a mark of their imperturbable friendship, Sirius thought later, that no one had asked But are you okay with this? or But you know I’m okay with this, don’t you?? Of course James was all right with it and of course Sirius knew that. They didn’t need to discuss it – it would never have been anything else but okay.

The get together scene in Remus' bed is adorable and your art is gorgeous! Not to forget McGonagall's shortsight and July being to hot to hex Snivellus.......
OMG I REALLY AM!!!!
I love love love that first picture. My mind is really feeling the Christmas. XD

And I am quite intrigued by the two parts of this narrative, as well as the way they are reflected by both pictures. For one, we see this lovely line in the wintery part: He laughed at something secret and it sounded like summer. And then the story flowed on to show us summery scene. Ah, beautiful!
dude I am so feeling the Christmas at the moment, too. Helped by the fact that it snowed here :D

I'm glad you liked it!
This is absolutely lovely. If I were anything other then straight, that's how I'd come out. I had to stop reading several times, I was laughing so hard. As funny as some of it was, there were really sweet bits, too. The whole thing was amazing. The boys were wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.
I'm happy the sweetness/humour came across :) thank you for the lovbely words!

Re: This may be a bit random, but...

I haven't, actually, but that's a lovely painting! kind of Van Gogh-y to me? but with less yellowyness and thank you for saying it's lovely :)
This was very sweet! And when Peter passed the gravy to Remus, I totally sporfled. Hee! Awkward boys are ♥!! The art is lovely and a perfect complement to your story!
haha I'm glad it made you sporfle. I do love a bit of awkwardness in fics. thank you <3
YOU MEAN I GET FIC AND ART?!!!! OMG I AM THE LUCKIEST GIRL IN THE WORLD! THANK YOU SO MUCH! *HUGS FOREVER*

This was lovely, just beautiful. The flow was really nice and I loved how you tied everything together with the art. <3 <3 <3

And this line, is my favorite: The kiss that followed felt like a promise.

Perfect end, simply perfect.
OH YAY I am so glad you liked this!!! I hope you['re really happy with it <3 I can actually send you the art if you like, you don't have to under any circumstances, but if you wanted it, feel free to drop me a message or anything!

so happy you liked this :D
Lovely art, and I also particularly love the gravy scene and the unsmooth love declaration.
thank you :)
oh, sirius. ♥ i adored the attempt to come out and the way he told remus he liked him. this was lovely! :)
thank you! ♥
i loved all of them, they are just awesome.
thanks, glad you liked!
I love the boyishly awkward attempts at communication, and the gravy scene was really fun. Great work with the art too!
thank you! the gravy scene was one of my favourites to write
ohhhh, this is so lovely! <3
thank you <3
Aw, this is just lovely! And pretty art to go with it too! I loved the snowy bit and the baubles, and then the lots of kissing, so cute and yet so sad in a way at the end. Very nice :)
thank you <3
Naww, very cute, and the art is lovely as well!
thank you! :)
awh, thank you :D me too!
It was so adorable! I loved the part when Sirius confessed to Remus and when he told James about his er... preferences XD :D
awhh, thank you :)