Welcome to my Lupin/Tonks series. Chapters will be in no particular order and set in the canon universe. I hope you enjoy. First up, here is a chapter from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

Tattoos

Remus is should be used to sleeping through crashes by now. Tonks can barely walk into a room without walking into something or elbowing an object off a shelf. It happens every morning, and mostly it doesn't wake him, although today the added thunk and yelp of "Bollocks!" jolts Remus into consciousness. He opens his eyes in time to see the rail of jackets tip over and land on the carpet. A moment later, a turquoise head pops up from the end of the bed.

"That went well," Tonks mutters to herself. Her hair's dripping wet, and as she stands up Remus sees that she's naked. Tonks swears to herself, then picks up her wand from the floor and flicks at the rail to make it stand upright.

"Want a hand?" Remus asks.

Because his girlfriend has had Stealth and Tracking training, she never jumps when he's surprised. Instead, she usually makes a slight jolt. She does it now, and it makes Remus' stomach jolt too.

"Not like you to be awake this early," Tonks mumbles.

"I wonder what woke me up?"

She pouts at him. Remus should find that annoying and childish, but instead it's adorable and alluring and makes him want to cover her mouth with his. She picks her towel up off the floor, sits down on the end of bed with her back to him, and starts towelling her hair (she could easily cast a drying charm on it, although Remus has discovered that it's best not to question his girlfriend's complicated hair-care routine). He shuffles to sit up against the headboard, looking at her back. He isn't sure and doesn't care what Tonks' natural figure is like, though she's mentioned a couple of times that she morphs her shoulders bulkier. Aurors need to be brawny. Tonks doesn't make her shoulders slimmer outside of work, which Remus likes, although he'll never tell her that. He avoids discussing her Metamorphmagus abilities with her, because she's so proud of her powers he feels nervous that he might accidentally insult her. Tonks' left shoulder has a bruise on. There's a scratch down her arm. She's got a scab on her right elbow, and if Remus was closer, he could see the place on her left elbow which has had a scar there since she broke it climbing out of her dormitory window in fourth-year. He knows so much about her, he realises. He's known her less than a year and already he knows her body and her anecdotes as well as he knows Sirius'.

Remus wants to push the duvet off, climb forward to sit behind Tonks, press his mouth to the bruise and kiss down her arm to the scab on her elbow. But kissing the bruise would press pressure on it, which might hurt, and he won't ever do anything which could hurt her even the slightest bit. So he stays where he is and gazes at the tattoo on her shoulder. It's a chameleon. The symbolism isn't difficult to work out; a love of colours and the ability to change appearance. The chameleon on Tonks' shoulder is inked in a range of colours, which means that technically it isn't a chameleon, as they blend into their background (although Remus has never pointed that out). When she's messing about changing her skin-tone, the shades of the chameleon change too. Magical tattoos can be made to move, so the chameleon wanders around across Tonks' back from time to time. Sometimes its eye rolls around in its socket, or its tongue darts out. Tonks got it in stages- first the outline, then the colours. It took her first two years of Auror training to finish- she's very friendly with the tattoo artist on Diagon Alley as a result of going there so many times to get parts of the chameleon coloured.

Tonks leans forward to dry her toes, then drops the towel on the floor and reaches into her overflowing chest of drawers (she never shuts them) to take out a bra and a pair of knickers. Most of her underwear is luminously-coloured- today the bra is yellow with cherries on, and her pants are pink.

"If you're awake you can help me out," Tonks announces, kicking her wardrobe door open. She searches for a moment, then pulls out a long-sleeved sparkly grey shirt, and a blue t-shirt with a cartoon character Remus doesn't recognise printed on it.

"Which one?"

"Should you wear?" he clarifies.

"No, which one should I use as the flag of the country I'm becoming prime minister of," Tonks snarks.

Remus considers, knowing that Tonks knows as well as he does that his fashion advice is negligible. Which is why he can't help but feel touched by the fact that she's asking.

"The grey one," he decides.

"It's silver," she corrects him, "But okay,"

Tonks tosses it on over her head, though it's translucent enough that he can see her bra underneath, and short enough to leave part of her stomach bare. Remus can see the piercing in her navel (that's the only piercing which stays in permanently- she changes the ones in her ears every day. Sometimes it's piercings or pins in the ear-lobe, sometimes in the helix, sometimes through the cartilage at the top of the ear. Tonks had a piercing in her nose when she was a teenager, but Aurors aren't allowed them. They aren't allowed lip piercings either, which annoys her because she's desperate to get one. Once, she told him, "That's the first rule to change when I get Mad-Eye's job," and Remus had no idea if this was a joke, a prediction, a dream, or a plan Tonks had actually discussed with Moody. Remus didn't mention that the idea of kissing her with a lip piercing made him shudder. And he nearly choked when she added, "And the second rule will be to let me get my nipple pierced,"). Part of her pirate ship tattoo is also visible. It's an outline ("linework" Tonks had explained, is the technical term), inked in what Tonks claims is brown although Remus is convinced is black. The ship has three sails, and the outline of portholes, a jolly roger flag, a female figurehead. It's Tonks' most recent tattoo, got because she "just fancied it". When she'd said that, Remus had had to pretend he didn't think it was a shocking and perplexing reason to get a picture permanently inked onto one's skin. He "just fancies" raspberry jam on his toast some mornings, but he's not about to get it drawn only his body forever. He doesn't understand half the things Tonks does. He cannot imagine what it is like inside her mind. He is constantly puzzled by aspects of her existence.

She leans into her draws-within-the-wardrobe (she has a seemingly unlimited number of clothes storage options) and withdraws three skirts: red stripes, and dark green with dots stitched into it, and purple leather.

"Choose," she orders, shoving them in front of Remus' nose.

"Green," he obeys.

"Why?"

"Green is nice," he guesses, unsure why she's asking or what the answer she's looking for is.

"Nah, I like the purple," Tonks decides, "But thanks anyway,"

She sets the purple skirt down on the bed, tosses the other two onto the floor, fetches a pair of tights from another inner-universe of her wardrobe, tugs them on, and puts the skirt on over the top. The leather hugs her hips, distractingly.

On her bedroom mantelpiece, Tonks has a jewellery box. It's white with ornate pale-yellow detailing- not the sort of item which looks like it belongs in her modern, untidy bedroom. Tonks opens the box and chooses a necklace and bracelets, and as she puts them on, Remus eyes the tattoo on the top side of her right wrist. It's a letter A in blue ink. The A stands for Acceptable- the grade she got in her Transfiguration mock NEWT exam. It had made her furious and scared and, Tonks had told him, led to her spending more hours than she likes to admit crying in Professor Sprout's office. She'd panicked about what would happen if she got As next year and didn't get into Auror training. Tonks got the tattoo done the Summer following the mocks, to remind herself that an Acceptable was not acceptable. She had to do better and work harder. She explained to Remus she'd got the tattoo was in the inside of her righting wrist so she can look at it when she's writing or duelling, remember the dreadful, sinking feeling of getting an A, and know that she has to keep working as hard as she can to avoid ever feeling that way again.

When Tonks first told him that story, Remus' first thought was that if she got the tattoo the summer between her sixth and seventh year, she'd have been too young to get it legally. Sirius, he remembers, had also started getting inked before he was old enough. Some of those similarities between them that make Remus feel uncomfortable, and some make him smile. His next thought was Tonks' ambition and work ethic are what he most admires about her. She does a full day at the Ministry, then goes to Order duty. She makes notes about details Mad-Eye tells her, though only when he isn't looking. She does sit-ups and press-ups and chin-ups every evening, which is sometimes embarrassing if she's panting away on the floor while Remus is sitting on the sofa drinking tea. She knows the names of all the bones in the hand, all the Acrasian quickfire jinxes, and all the laws surrounding public offenses (she's working on memorising their subsections, which many Aurors who've been in the job ten years haven't all bothered to do). She is the most impressive person he knows.

Tonks kneels on the floor in front of her mirror to do her hair, and Remus takes his novel off the bedside table to distract himself. The book is As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner ("Looks like a barrel of laughs," his girlfriend had noted when she'd seen it). It's the sort of book one needs to pay attention to, and he's too sleepy and distracted to do that at present. Remus reads the same page over a few times, until Tonks chucks her bottle of hair product to the side, leaps up from the floor and bounds over to him. Her hair's shoulder-length, wavy and reddish coloured. Remus can tell that she's put lipstick on, and perhaps something on her eyelashes too? Make-up is another mystery.

"I'll see you at Grimmauld tomorrow night," she promises.

Remus nods and replies, "Have a good day,"

"You too. Say hi to Sirius,"

"I'll wind him up for you," he smiles.

"Good," Tonks says. She hugs her arms around his neck. Tonks presses a kiss to the side of his face and makes a little hum of happiness. It's such a genuine, content, flattering noise that it makes Remus' insides tremble. Since this thing with her started he's felt occasionally delicate. Not in the hungover or ill or weak sense, but in the physical, flimsy, soft way. She has opened up new emotions and sensations in him which are frightening, delicious and addictive. Not only joy and pleasure, but befuddlement, anger, concern, and this new sensitivity towards himself. He experiences the world differently because of her.

"Bye-bye," Tonks whispers in his ear. Then she lets him go, yanks a navy jacket from the rail she knocked over earlier, and whirls out of the bedroom. He hears her clatter into the kitchen to grab her coffee flask, then crash through to hall Halfway out of the flat's door, she calls, "Don't go searching for my secret teenage diary!"

She always says stuff like that whenever she leaves him alone in her flat. Remus still can't quite believe that she trusts him enough to let him be here by himself. He hears Tonks get to her flat's front door, a couple of thuds while she rummages through her pile of shoes for a pair she wants to wear today, and then a final yell of, "Cheerio!" as the front door open and shuts.

Remus flops backwards onto the pillow, reflecting that that was all a bit of a blur. Turns out that Morning Leaving-For-Work Tonks is a distilled version of Usual Tonks, with her clumsiness, noise, untidiness, rushing about, chaos, and adorableness intensified. Remus feels almost as if he's had a strong shot of coffee. Actually, gin would be more accurate, given how discombobulated she's left him. Discombobulated, and grinning like a basket of chips.

Perhaps he should wake up this early every morning.


Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy this series, and please remember to review.