Author: Crave Kashmir PM
After the full moon, Remus wakes in the wrong place with no memory of the previous night. His clothes are torn. His body littered in marks. What has he been doing with himself? One-shot.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Remus L. - Words: 3,810 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 5 - Published: 03-16-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7930356
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The pain was always the first thing he noticed when he woke after the full moon. Every bone in his body had changed with the moon's rising; every muscle and tendon altered as the wolf took shape; even his pores stretched to accommodate the growth of fur. The Wolfsbane potion did nothing to ease the pain of transformation, only allowed his mind to remain his own.
Remus blinked and paused midway through his back-breaking stretch as his hand collided with a table and his feet with the hearth of the sitting room fireplace. That was wrong. He ought to be in his room. Why was he in the sitting room?
Frowning, he scoured his mind for the information. All he came up with was the vague notion of what he always did when he was the wolf, nothing solid or verifiable to ease his understandable anxiety. If the state of the sitting room was any indication, the wolf had simply curled up before the fire and called it an evening, but he didn't like that he could not remember.
He didn't like the strange taste in his mouth or that smell in the air, either.
That smell he knew all too well: sex. With two eighteen-year-old boys in the house and Sirius, who might as well still be twenty-one for how mature he was, the smell of arousal and sex was a near-constant in their home. He had just learned to ignore it, even when it saturated a room as intensely as it did the sitting room now. The taste, too, was disconcerting. So familiar, but he could not place it. He pushed it aside, sure it would come to him later. There were more pressing matters, like figuring out what he had done last night.
He picked himself up off the floor with some effort, and reached for the clothes he saw on the couch.
"What the hell?" he muttered, lifting the shirt and scowling. Every button missing, as if he had disrobed so near to transformation that he had no time for undoing the buttons. "Why would I have left it on so long?"
He really didn't like the gaping hole where the previous night and evening should have been. As he hauled himself up the stairs to the shower, he tried without success to bring it back. Nothing. The last memory he had was of Sirius shoving the Wolfsbane potion in his face with only two hours to spare before the full moon rose above the horizon.
It had been a trying week. Harry and Ron's Auror training had left the pair returning at all hours of the night in all states of fatigue and injury. Every night, Sirius, Remus had to tend to them, brew potions and help them to bed. All day, they had to clean up the mess they had made the previous night. The Wolfsbane potion ended up forgotten until the last minute.
"Perhaps he messed up in the rush," Remus considered as he wrapped himself in a dressing gown and went back downstairs.
It was a possibility, though one he would never dare suggest to Sirius. The man was brilliant at potions and if anyone said otherwise, he would prove it by brewing one of the most complicated potions he knew by heart – Amortentia – and then lace their morning coffee with it. James Potter and Ron Wealsey were just two notable names on the list of those who learned never to doubt the man's potion skills, and Sirius had the photographs to prove it.
The kitchen was still a wreck. The Wolfsbane potion was terribly tricky and had over a dozen ingredients, all of which were scattered over the counters and table. Sirius must have run from the house as soon as the moon rose just in case the hurried brew had failed. Remus started clearing the counters, sorting the ingredients as best he could, though half the dried herbs looked identical to him. He would have to ask Hermione for help identifying them later. Without her, he was sure every potion they – even Sirius – attempted would be fatal. Poor girl, stuck in the house with the four of them.
He dug into the canister on the counter, eager to fill his mug with sugar to make up for the horrendous taste that always lingered on his tongue after drinking the Wolfsbane potion. Heaping spoon hovering over his mug, he stopped and rolled his tongue back, massaging the taste buds against themselves and sampling the odd taste in his mouth. Again, it was familiar but nothing like the revolting flavour he normally woke to. Thinking about it, he remembered that the Wolfsbane potion had not tasted quite so bad as it normally did.
His eyes returned to the sugar canister and his hand darted forward, grabbing it and bringing it under his nose. It was half-empty. He knew for a fact that Hermione had just filled it at the beginning of the week. He had stood beside her while she reached into the cupboard for the new sack of sugar to fill it, her shirt riding up as her arms rose, revealing a sliver of soft skin at her belly.
'Stop that!' he growled at himself. 'Focus!'
He shook away thoughts of Hermione and her deliciously soft and barely scented skin, dragging his mind back to the sugar and the fact that the Wolfsbane potion had tasted half-way decent this month.
"You bastard," Remus snarled, slamming the canister back onto the counter.
"Figured it out that quickly, eh?" Sirius spoke from the doorway.
The smirk did not have time to finish forming on his lips before Remus was on him. He gripped the man's jacket and shoved him hard against the wall. If he had not been so weak from the full moon, he probably would have broken some of Sirius's ribs with that single blow alone.
"Problems?" asked Sirius airily, though he was slightly winded by the impact with the wall.
"You put sugar in my potion, Sirius," Remus ground out the words. "I would call that a massive problem."
"Do you see any dead bodies around here? No," the man replied, easily pulling Remus's fingers off his jacket. "I was with you as soon as you transformed."
"What? Did you miss the old days?" Remus demanded.
Sirius paused as he considered it. "Sometimes, but not last night. Last night wasn't about me. No, as much as I enjoy our romps together, this was about making a pleasant evening for someone else. And depending on who you ask, I think you'll find that a bit of sugar made for an extremely pleasant evening."
Remus scowled, ignoring the comment as some of Sirius's typical smirking bullshit. "What the hell were you thinking?"
Sirius took his time pouring himself a mug of coffee before answering. As he turned, he sighed. "I couldn't stand it anymore."
"What? The werewolf? The potion? If you're sick of making it for me, just say so. I can manage—"
"No! I'm brilliant at it and you know I love feeling useful again," Sirius interjected.
"Then what are you talking about?"
"You're sick of me?"
Sirius hung his head and breathed a laugh. "No, Remus. Well, not entirely. I couldn't stand your sighing and sidelong glances anymore."
The man stiffened and took a half-step away from his friend. "Uh, look, Sirius… I know you are very… uh… open when it comes to romances, but I don't—I'm—I only like women."
"I'm aware of that," he smiled. "It's the fact that you like one particular woman that was getting on my nerves." He set the mug down and leaned in, speaking crisply and rather condescendingly. "You fancy Hermione. Everyone knows it. Well, everyone but Hermione, but she can be as obtuse as you."
Remus felt his heart sliding up his throat. "What? No. That's nonsense. I couldn't. She's a child."
"She's a woman, nineteen last September," Sirius corrected. "Gorgeous and brilliant and you know it. We've all noticed the way you lean into her on the couch, stare at her when she's reading, cooking, washing up, on the landing or the stairs or the pavement… You stare at her rather a lot. I mean, for fuck's sake, Remus, you sniff her hair whenever she hugs you! Normal blokes don't do that unless they fancy a bird."
Had he been that obvious? He did like her. He didn't understand how any sane man wouldn't. As Sirius said, she was gorgeous and brilliant, perfect in every way that mattered. To date, she was one of the few women who could look at him without seeing his scars, and of them she was the only one he wanted to look at in return. Living with her was practically torture, but it was worth every agonising minute. He couldn't touch her as he wanted to, lie beside her or kiss her. He could barely find enough reasons to spend as much time with her as he did, but still he tried to monopolise her attention.
"Admit it," Sirius pushed.
"So what if I do?" Remus demanded. "Are you telling me that letting that dangerous beast out without any control was the best plan you could come up with to making me saying it?"
"No, this was the last plan in a long line of failures," he said, slumping against the counter. "You are a hard man to crack, Lupin."
Remus's brow knit as he tried to think what else his friend might have done to him.
"Nothing," Sirius said as if he could read the man's thoughts. "I didn't do anything… nothing too bad anyway. I got you drunk last month. I thought for sure if you were pissed beyond reason you would saunter up to girl and show her how you feel. What sort of drunk starts spouting philosophy? Honestly!"
Remus chuckled. He remembered that lively debate he had with Hermione after Sirius dragged him to a pub the previous month.
"And Amortentia," he admitted. "Fat lot of good it did."
"I put it in your coffee," Sirius shrugged. "Guess it doesn't work when a man's already in love."
"When was this?" Remus demanded.
"Last week?" he repeated, trying to think what stupid things he might have said or done in Hermione's presence, but there was nothing out of the ordinary… he had taken to hugging her a bit more than was strictly necessary.
"That was the last straw," Sirius said. "If drink and love potions couldn't get you to loosen up, I knew there was only one thing that could… Moony."
The blood drained from his face as he listened. "You planned to let her alone with that thing?"
"What? No! Do I look fucking stupid to you? " the man stood and glared at the pale werewolf. "I planned to have you two alone together before the transformation; I remember what you were like before the moon rose, Remus. You were completely unrestrained. You didn't care about rules or boundaries or dangers. Whatever you wanted to do, you did it and to hell with the consequences. Before the moon rose, you were free." He smiled grimly. "That's what I wanted, not the wolf, but you without the inhibitions."
"Do you have any idea how dangerous that was?"
"Stop trying to hide behind your condition, you git," replied Sirius. "I was close by. And last I checked, Hermione knew more ways to incapacitate an opponent than either of the two Aurors-in-training."
He opened his mouth to argue, but couldn't. Hermione was more than capable of defending herself against him. She knew twenty spells at least that could keep a werewolf at bay. Surely, she knew three times as many that could keep an amorous man from attacking her. If she wanted to stop him, she could.
"Dammit," Remus groaned and tugged at his hair. This was bad. He had been alone with Hermione during those uncontrollable moods before the full moon rose. James and Sirius used to have one hell of a time restraining him back at school; alternately, they also loved to take advantage of Remus's more daring moods to get him to do pranks he normally would have disapproved of. Sirius was right, though, he was his most uninhibited before the full moon. Without the Wolfsbane to help him control it, he would happily act on any impulse that entered his brain.
If Hermione was with him, he knew precisely what those impulses would be.
"Why did you do this, Sirius?" he asked. "Things were fine the way they were."
He snorted derisively. "Fine? You're miserable without her."
"I can't stay here anymore," Remus declared. "I don't know what I did, but she's going to hate me. I have to leave. Now." He stood with the declaration and made for the door.
"Don't know what you're complaining about," Sirius smirked as he positioned himself before the only exit. "From what I can see, everything turned out just fine." He pulled at the collar of the dressing gown, his smirk growing wider. "She's got quite the set of teeth on her…"
"What?" Remus's hand flew to his throat, feeling the sharp twinge of nausea in his gut as his fingers pressed on bruised skin.
His friend pulled a mirror from his pocket and held it up for him to see. Deep purple bruises littered his neck and throat. Pulling the collar of the dressing gown wide, he looked and saw them across his chest and shoulders and down his stomach. Staring down, his eyes focused low on his hips where one very tantalising mark disappeared beneath the tie of the gown. There was only one place to go from that point.
"I think you're safe, Mr Lupin," his friend smiled. "The girl clearly enjoyed herself last night. As did you by the look of things."
Remus couldn't look away from that love bite, thrilled and terrified by what it meant. His mind reeled as he remembered waking up in the sitting room, naked. His shirt missing all its buttons. She had torn it from his body; she must have. He remembered, too, the pungent and overwhelming smell of sex in the room; the familiar, though half-forgotten, taste on his tongue. The taste, he recalled slowly, of a woman. He rolled his tongue again and savoured it, that taste. It was definitely a woman, her mouth and body and desire. Hermione's mouth. Hermione's body. Hermione's desire.
He had finally done what he was so desperate to do, and he had absolutely no memory of it. "I… I wouldn't know how good a time either of us had. I don't remember."
Sirius frowned. "Downside to being Moony, I suppose," he nodded slowly, turning his head as the noise of the front door closing hastily came to their ears.
"Shit," Remus cursed and pulled the dressing gown closed, covering the love bites. If he pretended they were not there, maybe things could stay as they had been. She would not hate him for what he had done.
"Sirius Orion Black!" the woman shouted, stomping into the kitchen. The smirk dropped off Sirius's face as her hard eyes fell on him. "You are the most thoughtless, heartless, insufferable man. What were you thinking tampering with that potion?"
Remus's heart fell with his friend's smile. Much as he wanted to pretend last night had never happened, part of him, a large and hopeful part, wanted her to run in and throw herself at him, kiss him, tell him she loved him. That was clearly not going to happen. She was furious.
Her dark eyes did not offer him so much as a glance of sympathy as she marched across the kitchen and started poking Sirius in the chest. He felt a sharp pain in his chest as she stopped so close that he might touch her. He was inconsequential, it would seem. Easy to ignore. James always slapped him when he suggested such a thing, but he proved his point now, sneaking away from the irate woman, sliding through the door without her ever seeing him.
As she tore into Sirius with her harsh criticisms, Remus dragged himself up the stairs. Rest was what he needed after a transformation, but he knew he would get none in the house now. He could never be comfortable here again, not knowing that he had defiled the young woman he cared for. Throwing on his clothes, he pulled his old travelling trunk from the back of his closet and began to fill it.
A tiny knock came at the door. He expected it to be Sirius come to make a forced apology.
"Fuck off!" Remus shouted. "This is all your fault and you deserve every hex she throws at you!"
"I agree entirely," Hermione replied quietly from the doorway.
He kept his eyes locked on his work, clenching his jaw and fighting that all too common urge to press himself against her and take her mouth as his own. "I'm sorry, Hermione," he said. "I'll leave as soon as I've finished. You won't have to look at me again."
She was closer, her delicious smell filling his nostrils and making him lightheaded. "That is a rather stupid plan," she replied in a flat, sensible tone.
"What?" he said, snapping his head to glare at her. The anger he had seen down in the kitchen was gone now. He had expected some of it to be held in reserve for him, the dirty, perverted monster, but there was nothing even close to rage in her eyes or on her face. Her eyes were bright and cheeks flushed. She was beautiful. Seeing her made his ache all the worse. "I did things to you… I don't know what exactly, but I'm sure I did them. How could you want me around after that?"
Her head tilted as she watched his anxiety grow. So it would be sympathy and not anger she sent his way. "Remus –"
"No, I shouldn't have done that," he insisted stubbornly, turning away and throwing a shirt down into his trunk. "I need to leave." He sent half his wardrobe into the trunk while Hermione stood in his doorway saying nothing. His heart was throwing itself against his ribcage, desperate to escape, but he refused to be swayed by his feelings or how lovely she smelled.
His own anger was growing as she stood there. He deserved some of that blame she laid entirely at Sirius's feet, yet she stood by and gave him nothing but sympathetic glances. He didn't understand why wasn't she shouting at him, and he said as much, though he hadn't intended to.
"You're not the only one who did things," she replied quietly, so quietly he might not have heard her speak at all if every ounce of his being wasn't so intent on her.
"What?" he turned, terrified of what her face would show.
He never thought she would be smiling. Her deep eyes travelled across his mouth and down his throat, settling briefly on the love bite visible above his collar. As her gaze rose to meet his again, he saw in her neither anger nor sympathy but something he had only ever seen in his wildest fantasies. He refused to believe it was really there, that glitter of mischief and desire. But as she spoke again, he knew it was all real.
"I'd hate for you to go when there were so many other things I'd like to do."
Pressing the bag of ice against his face, Sirius cursed and groaned. Considering how much Hermione had enjoyed herself, the man had no idea why she had felt the need to hit him with such a severe stinging hex. He could only see out of his left eye and the ice barely managed to dull the pain. The swelling would likely take the rest of the week to go down.
"Little bitch," he muttered through his puffy, irritated lips, glowering at the counter as he cleaned it manually.
She had taken his wand, too.
'Punishment for your poor judgement,' she had called it and set him to tidying the kitchen
Forced labour. Last he checked, she was deadest against such things. She was waging war at the Ministry daily to give House Elves rights, yet here she was making him clean without magic or pay.
Upstairs, a door slammed loudly and Remus shouted in what could only be surprise. Perhaps she had not had as much fun as Sirius thought. The girl was only human, and slave to the same hormones as everyone else. Maybe all that passed between Remus and Hermione happened in the heat of a desperate moment and she now hated herself and him for it. His guilt spiked with the noise of what could only be a body hitting the floor in Remus's room.
"Moony!" Sirius cried and ran for the door, launching himself up the stairs to his best mate's rescue, because he knew Remus would never hex Hermione, not even in self-defense.
He was poised to explode into the room, though without a wand he was as good as dead against an irate Hermione Granger. Still, he had caused this mess and if he had to take another hex for his friend, he would. As he steeled his nerves for the pain that was about to come, a groan made him stop. Remus groaned, loud and pained. He was alive.
"Hermione," Remus breathed, his voice ragged. "Merlin, Hermione, where did you learn to do that?"
Sirius snatched his hand away from the doorknob, knowing full well what he would have met with if he had thrown the door wide. Were his face capable of it, he would have smirked in satisfaction at a job well done. He had to settle for a puffy grimace with a twinkle visible in only one eye.
A/N: I both love and hate Greek dramas, all the action happening off-stage. Decided to make one of my own. Love it or hate it, I would love to hear your opinion.
Many, many thanks to Lalinn, without whom this would have been very abrupt and lacking in such a Sirius-y ending.