A/N: So, here it is… The actual first chapter! Since a few people have added this to their story alerts (Thank you! It means a lot), I'm going to post this bit here and take the other bit down, seeing as it's actually pretty far through the story, and therefore doesn't make much sense. So, once I've posted all the chapters before it, I'll put a (hopefully…) improved, re-edited version back up. You follow all that? Good. If anyone would like the other chapter back, I could post it separately or something…
Alright, time-wasting over. I promise. Enjoy!
Boyxboy, so no likey, no ready.

A kiss/a touch/never enough/so soft, so hard/don't stop, you start/instinctive skills/like animals/human connect to human/boy meets boy/know what to do…
–Tokio Hotel, Human Connect to Human

Fourth year
1st December

It was snowing. A few – alright, several – inches of snow on the ground shouldn't really have merited the mass hysteria it got – no other weather gets a reaction like snow-madness. People don't run around like maniacs screaming and throwing things at each other or lie on the ground waving their arms and legs around like upside-down beetles because it's sunny or drizzling slightly or overcast. Snow is magic. Now, ninety per cent of the school were out in the grounds staging a mass snowball fight, having completely regressed to five-year-olds. But not the marauders. Oh, no. For some reason, our werewolf-in-residence was bafflingly, irritatingly reluctant to get out there and join in.

'Moony, come on!' I whined. I was this close to getting on my knees and begging him to come outside with the rest of us. And I might not have been much like the rest of my family, but Blacks don't beg. Which meant it was time for drastic measures. I pouted. Frustrated, he looked away. I grinned. He wouldn't have done that if the pout-and-puppy-eyes combination wasn't working. Just a little more…

'No! Pad, I've told you fifty times now! It's the full moon tonight.'

'Bollocks, Moony,' James retorted, joining me on the offensive. 'Have you ever hurt anyone on the day of a full moon before?'

'Well, there was that one time where you made me jump when I was holding that really heavy book and I dropped it on your foot…' he tipped his head backwards, the slanting afternoon sunlight soaring through the dusty air and gilding his tawny hair, turning it bright gold. His eyes matched it easily, molten amber-gold and flecked with every imaginable shade of yellow. That's the funny thing about him, I thought, he's completely, utterly, one hundred percent fuckably gorgeous, but he genuinely has no idea. Then, I blinked, surprised. Huh. Where had that come from?

'That was an accident,' I pointed out, helpfully. 'And, besides, it's still snowing. Everyone's gone nuts. You could get away with murder.'

James nodded thoughtfully, but Remus looked at me sharply, spearing me with those eyes and pinning me against the wall without lifting a finger. Damn him and those eyes. I swear to God those things have magic powers of their own. 'Pad, I sincerely hope you're not serious?'

I donned a suitably martyred expression. 'Moony, I can't believe you have such a low opinion of me!'

'Bollocks,' he retorted, echoing James, unperturbed and cool as a wet fish as always 'You were doing your plotting face.'

'Well, maybe I was. Not the point.' I studied him thoughtfully. I wasn't as smart as him or Lily (who I assumed was already outside, as was Peter. James was getting impatient, I could tell, he'd been planning to use the snow to make yet another move on Lily), but I could tell something didn't quite add up here. 'Mate, you've taken risks before. Why the concern all of a sudden? Tell me? Please?'

I pushed the puppy eyes even further. Then he seemed to deflate, letting out a deep, why-must-I-carry-the-weight-of-the-world-on-my-poor-thin-shoulders sigh. 'You win. I… I don't like snow, alright?'

'What?!' James and I blurted together in shocked canon.

'I don't like snow! It's… cold. And wet.'

James shook his head, expression torn midway between pity and horror. 'You poor, deprived child. Come on. Get his other arm, Pad. We,' he announced, in that tone of voice that no one argues with, 'Are taking out outside whether you like it or not.'

He didn't. Like it, that is. He practically had to be frogmarched down the stairs, through the common room, along one of our favourite shortcuts to the main door and outside.

'Snowball fight!' declared James. 'Pad, I'm going to go and round up some more people,' (find Lily, more like) 'So you stay here and make sure Moony doesn't do a runner. Be right back!' he dashed off. I looked around, grinning like a kid in a toyshop. I couldn't help it. It was snowing harder than ever now: fat, fluffy, feather-soft flakes, so fragile they either melted immediately on your skin or shattered into amoeba-sized fragments in your hair. I glanced over at Remus. He didn't have to like it, but the snow suited him. He was practically glowing. He pouted, and suddenly it struck me (in an a-train-just-hit-me sort of way, decidedly not in an I-just-had-a-sensible-idea sort of way) how good his mouth looked. Good enough to eat. Good enough to–

What? This was Remus. Earth to Sirius' brain – I know you're semi-permanently horny, but there's no way around the fact that you were lusting on your friend. Bad idea! The king of Bad Ideas, in fact.

'So,' I said, in attempt to shake off this bizarre train of thought. 'What d'you think?'

He looked at me witheringly, but I didn't think he was really annoyed. He's a bit insecure, is Moony, always chuffed to bits when we remind him that we honestly care about him. Personally, I think Fenrir Greyback has a lot to answer for. Poor Moony basically grew up believing he was a monster who didn't deserve to be treated like a human. 'About my friends manhandling me?' he said drily, 'Or the fact that I'm well on the way to losing several very important body parts to severe frostbite?'

I waggled my eyebrows suggestively. I can't help myself sometimes. Particularly not when someone provides me with a cast-iron innuendo opportunity like that. 'Which ones?'

'My opposable thumbs, idiot.'

'Oh. Shame. Is there anything you like about it? The snow, I mean.'

He shrugged and made a non-committal noise that, for some reason, made me shiver slightly. 'I don't know. There's too many people around, it's too noisy. It'd be much nicer if it was a bit emptier.'

I rolled my eyes. 'Give over, the nearest people to here are half a mile away.'

Well, maybe not half a mile. But a long way, for sure. They weren't looking at us, hadn't even realised we were here. Maybe they'd have heard if we were really screaming at them, but they wouldn't unless we did. Then a particularly vicious, stingingly cold gust of wind poked itself down our necks and clawed at every inch exposed skin. As one, we jumped behind a large and remarkably ugly statue of… actually, I'm not sure what it was of. But it was uglier than Aunt Millificent, which is saying something, because my sainted mother once famously hung old Millie's portrait upside down and no one noticed.

I suddenly realised how very close together we were standing, like penguins. Not that either of us actually looked like… oh, never mind. Apparently completely oblivious to what I was suddenly painfully aware of, he shuffled about a bit on the spot, apparently trying to keep warm. He huffed, exhaling a visible white cloud.

'What in the name of arse is taking James so long?!' he demanded.

'Oh, he'll be chatting up Lily. Or trying to. Again.'

He groaned, and I carefully reigned in my overactive (perverted) imagination. What was wrong with me today?! It was like Moony had suddenly figured out how to harness those wolf pheromones or something. Actually, knowing him and James, that was probably true, and they'd thought it would make a good prank to pull on me.

'He won't be back for hours. And it's freezing,' he huffed, pouting indecently temptingly. A familiar (but highly disturbing, given the circumstances) heat blossomed right down in the pit of my stomach, waking up every inch of skin and every drop of blood in the vicinity. Shivering (not entirely with cold either) and hoping to God this bizarre and inexplicable… attraction, if that was what it was, really was their idea of a hilarious joke. I slumped back against the frozen stone, and he followed suit. For a few seconds, we both just stared up into the sky, watching the snow swirling, cocooning us. Then I turned my head slightly to look at him. He'd already done exactly the same thing. We were so close I could smell him – soap and paper and something musky, animal, wolfy. Close enough to count the colours in his eyes, I thought. I seemed to have fallen into some surreal, dreamlike, semi-trance state. He held my gaze easily, not flinching or looking away. Neither of us were thinking; neither of us wanted to be the one to start. Slowly, cautiously, wondering uneasily if I'd misjudged this horribly, I leant forwards, a centimetre at a time. It was the lightest, most careful brush of lips, barely even the maiden aunt of an excuse for a kiss, but it was electric, searing, the fact that it was completely wrong sending a delicious little shiver through every last inch of me. And I really do mean every last inch. He pulled away, eyes shining, flushed bright pink. I offered the tiniest confused, exultant smile. I could still taste him slightly on my lips.

And that was it. That was what swung everything from scary-but-maybe-it's-right to no-no-no-it's-too-weird. What on earth had I been thinking? That was Remus. And whichever way you looked at it, I'd just kissed him. Slightly more alarmingly to the point, why hadn't he stopped me and talked some sense into me? That had worrying implications to be stewed over later. Fortunately, at that exact moment, James arrived with literally two-thirds of the fourth-years in tow, saving me from having to say anything. Thank Merlin, I thought, literally pathetically grateful.

'Snowball fight time, before it all melts!' he yelled, jubilant. Before it melts? It was still snowing. His eyes narrowed in mock suspicion. 'What were you two doing, all huddled up over here?'

Ha. If only he knew what he was implying was actually true. All the same, it was a bit close for comfort. It wouldn't have done – wouldn't have done being exactly the operative phrase here (think about it. You'll get it eventually) – for it to get round that I was gay, firstly because I wasn't and secondly because it wasn't going to help at all with the girls. At least, I certainly didn't think I was. I had absolutely no explanation for what had just happened, but it lingered like a virus, like no other first kiss – or any kiss, for that matter – ever had. I could still feel the ghost of his mouth against mine, cautious and hopeful, tasting of coffee and chocolate.

It was weird. Really, really weird. And not good for either of us. The thing to do was clearly to forget anything had happened.

I'm not proud of what I did next, but right then I was completely convinced it was the thing to do. I laughed along with everyone else, denying it not-too-seriously (defensiveness is as good as a written confession), shoving James playfully and ending up in the middle of the scrum. Quickly, I glanced around the group and away again, to check we had everyone. But not quickly enough that I didn't see Moony's confused, puzzled face.

Oh, Merlin's balls. What the hell had I done now?