Author's Note: Written for the Seven Kisses Challenge by Femme Fetal.
Character: Remus Lupin
Disclaimer: I do not own any of this, even the stuff I made up, because I didn't copyright it.
Remus was so excited-his parents were going out tonight, and he finally got to stay home by himself! The nine-year-old boy was practically bouncing up and down all day. He could hardly wait for that night, when he'd get to stay up late and mess around.
"Ok, you know that dinner is in the refrigerator?" asked his mother as she and his dad prepared to leave.
"Ok, and emergency phone numbers are by the phone."
"I know, Mum. Don't turn on the stove! You can go now!" He kissed his parents good-bye impatiently and they left.
That was the night the werewolf came.
The broom closet was cramped and Remus was forced into an awkward sitting position as the girl shoved her tongue down his throat. It had to be one of the most uncomfortable positions he'd ever been in. "Mhmph-" he tried to say, but at that moment, her tongue was shoved down his throat, cutting off even this muffled sound.
He really needed to breathe. This was becoming unbearable. Leaning back over the upside-down bucket he was sitting on, untangling himself from her arms, and gasped in more air than he'd ever taken in one breath before. She was smiling at him, her lips wet from kissing. Fighting the urge to vomit, he stumbled out of the closet.
Ballgoers were heading towards their common rooms and he joined in the crowd heading upstairs. Gaining the safety of the dormitory he shared with Peter (who was already asleep), Srius, and James, he lay down on his bed and closed his eyes, going over the evening's events in his mind.
Finally, James and Sirius entered the dormitory. Remus noted their clasped hands-an unfairness he still could not get over. "Moony! There you are!" said a drunken-sounding Sirius, patting Remus on the back. "What were you doin' huh? Gettin' it on with the ladies?"
"After a fashion," he said, remembering the choking sensation. "But believe me, it won't happen again.
Of course Sirius was the godfather. There really hadn't been any reason to think otherwise, but he'd hoped anyway. He still came to visit when they brought the baby-Harry was his name-home.
"He looks just like you, James," said Remus, "But he's got Lily's eyes." Lily smiled.
"That's what everyone's been saying." When Remus looked at her quizzically, she explained, "Molly and Alice visited us at St. Mungo's, and Sirius took us home." Remus nodded, but didn't speak. Sirius had been here and nobody had told him? Come to think of it, why hadn't Sirius contacted him recently?
"Well, I've got to go now," he said. "Lovely seeing you both." He kissed Harry's forehead lightly.
"Well, okay… come see us again soon, Ok, Moony?" Remus said he would, then left.
It was the last time he'd see Lily and James alive.
He'd been living alone-more so than before-for fourteen years when Sirius realized that they could use his old house as headquarters. Since then, he and Sirius had lived there together. Not in the same room, but closer than before.
And now that the school year was started, they were living there together-alone.
Was it really so much to hope for?
It was November, and they were alone in the kitchen and Sirius was leaning on Remus, who was stroking his hair lightly. Remus knew he shouldn't read too much into it, but it still felt wonderful.
"Moony?" asked Sirius suddenly. He'd been lost in thought, as he had been quite often lately.
"Hm?" Remus asked, turning to face his friend, who'd lifted his head off Remus' shoulder.
And then Sirius leaned in and kissed him.
He was shocked at first, but got over it quickly, following Sirius' lead, kissing him back. Sirius was much better than the one other person he'd kissed, but then she had only been fifteen.
Sirius pulled away gently. "I'm sorry," he began, but Remus cut him off.
"Sorry? Are you-you thought-Oh god, Sirius, I've wanted to do that since we were thirteen."
The months he'd spent with Sirius were the best since before Fenrir attacked. But too soon, it was brought to a sudden and painful end.
Since there was no body to bury, and Sirius had been a convicted murderer anyway, he had no proper funeral. The members of the Order who could make it gathered in the kitchen of Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place to share a few butterbeers and fond memories, though. Remus sat in the corner of the kitchen, trying not to cry.
He didn't notice that Tonks had come over until she spoke.
"Are you Ok?" she asked quietly.
"Honestly? I don't think so." He had no idea why he was about to spill his guts to Tonks, but he was. "God, everyone I knew, everyone I trusted, they're gone. And it's… terrifying. I mean, people can't just be gone like that, can they?"
Tonks was silent for a moment.
"That's… sort of what I wanted to talk about," she said. If he'd looked up, he'd have noticed that her hair was black and straight, not its usual vibrant, spiky pink. "I was thinking… it was, I mean… if I could just have stopped Bellatrix…"
"No, don't. It's not your fault. She's hard to beat, Bellatrix."
"I-I know. It's just…" she sighed. "Remus, I don't know how to say this some other way… I like you. A lot. And I keep thinking, what if it had been you who'd fallen through that veil? And… I just don't know if I'd be able to deal with that." She looked over at Remus. He must have looked shocked, because she said, "Oh, god. I've said too much, haven't I?"
"No… no. It's not… not that," he said, still a bit dazed from the suddenness of it all. "I just-look, can I talk to you again… some other time? I'm just… it's a lot to think about."
Tonks nodded-obviously this hadn't gone as she'd planned. If he had been able to feel something other than grief, he would've felt bad about this, but he found that he couldn't. She kissed him lightly on the cheek before walking away.
He'd been seeing a lot of Tonks in the last few months, when he wasn't and they'd started officially dating five weeks ago. He'd thought he would never date a girl, but Tonks had proved him wrong.
"Reeeeee-muuus!" she called, entering Grimmauld Place and setting off the portrait of Sirius' mother.
"Mudbloods and filth, disgracing the house of my family-"
"Shut up, shut up!" Remus said, flicking his wand at the portrait and closing it with a bang. He beckoned Tonks into the kitchen where they could talk freely.
"So what did you want to talk about?" he asked.
"Welllll," she said, "I was just thinking-it's our anniversary! We've been dating five weeks today. So I just thought I'd come and see you. 'Cuz I missed you this week."
Remus smiled, reaching for his pocket. "Well, I'm glad you stopped by, actually," he said. "Because, see, I was thinking. You know what you were talking about at Sirius' funeral? About people just being gone. And I thought-I know it's sudden, but I was thinking, I-well, I want to know that you'll never be gone like that. And I want you to know that I won't just be gone. So…" he pulled out the box he'd had in his pocket. "Will you marry me?"
Tonks' eyes widened. "Oh, Remus, I-of course!" She reached up on her toes and kissed him.
When they finally broke apart, she asked, "So, can I still go by Tonks?"
He'd been worried. But now that Teddy-his son, Teddy-was here, alive, he couldn't feel anything but joy. He knelt down by Tonks's bed-she still insisted on being called Tonks- to look at his son, whose hair had changed from magenta to gold in the last five minutes.
"He's beautiful," whispered Remus.
"He looks like you," replied Tonks."
"No, my hair doesn't change colors." She laughed, handing Teddy to him.
"Hello, Teddy," he whispered, kissing his son's forehead.