Summary: Thinking is vastly overrated. Denial is divine. Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks, post- OoTP.
Disclaimer: Yeah. Um, not mine. I just play with them.
A/N- Reviews are my crack. This is my first Harry Potter fic, surprisingly, though I've been reading them for ages. If you read, tell me what you thought. It's good karma, I promise. Now that I'm done whoring myself for reviews, on to the fic.
She makes him smile.
Very few people have been able to do that lately.
Remus is weary, his face strained and closed, but he opens for her. He smiles at her, in her spiky bubblegum pink hair, tight jeans and ratty Weird Sisters shirt; she'll smile back and miss her next step, sending her falling towards the hard ground.
But he picks her up. He offers a hand down at her, and her fingers grasp his tightly, because there's something more between them; he's not just picking her up from one her many falls, he picking her up because she's fallen away from what she used to be.
He makes her smile, too.
He doesn't know how it started at first, but he doesn't really care anymore. She's here, underneath him, writhing against him, her nails scratching into his back… and thinking is forgotten for a time.
Cause thinking always leads to regret, and sadness, and anger, and that's far more than he can handle right now.
Maybe he'll think about everything in a few years. A few decades. When he does, maybe he'll think about Tonks below him, or Sirius falling through the veil, or how he's the last one left.
Yes, he decides, thinking will be put off much longer.
He doesn't accept it. He doesn't want to accept it.
So he won't.
He never really accepted Lily and James's deaths; why should he accept Sirius's?
Lily, James, Sirius, Peter: all gone in a single day. But that was fifteen years ago, and he was young and in the years since Sirius found his way back to them.
Only to be taken away again.
He was happy, he knows that. He knows that when Sirius found his way back, it was almost like it was when he was young, before he had lines on his face, before he was jolted in and out of every new life he tried, before he grew up.
But Sirius is gone.
Because he'll always be alone. In the end, its going to be him, him, alone, and no slip of a girl is going to change that.
He refuses to let her.
He refuses to let her make him smile when she burns the toast, or when she slips on the stairs, or when she wiggles her nose and her face changes into something almost unrecognizable. Almost. He realizes now that he can always tell it's her when she changes. It's always Nymphadora, whether her nose is long or pointed, or her hair red or green. It's always Nymphadora.
He's not going to let her worm her way into his heart.
Everyone he loves dies anyway.
So he won't love her. He'll keep her close, he won't want to live without her, but he won't love her. Because he is old and she is too young to die.
She's keening now, her lips and teeth biting into his shoulder, telling him to go on, urging him forward.
He obliges willingly.
He doesn't know what this is.
He's tired of caring.
When they finish, she curls up next to him, legs wrapping around his, a tangle of blankets covering them.
He almost laughs at the scene they must be presenting now, sweat on both their brows, clothes strewn about the room, her bra on the bedpost because he had ripped it off with an enthusiasm he hadn't felt in years.
He imagines Molly's face if she were to come in right this moment.
The laugh comes, unbidden, and she pokes him in the side, jabbing one finger into his rib.
"What's so funny?" she asks curiously.
He looks down at her, her head pillowed in the crook of his neck, her fingers tapping an irregular rhythm on his chest.
"Nothing," he answers her, smoothing her now long black hair. "Nothing at all."
She looks up at him, raising her head and one cool eyebrow. "I don't believe you," she says simply, teasingly. "But I'm tired, and I want to sleep."
"You do that."
Remus knows that she'll fall asleep, and he'll lie there, and sometime during the night he'll leave her and go to his own bedroom down the hall.
'Cause if he stays, he knows he'll never be able to go. If he stays, he won't be able to lift her arm of his chest, detangle her legs from his, or roll off the bed without waking her up.
So he dresses quickly, sparing a quick glance to Tonk's snoring form on the bed, and leaves the room.
He gets into his cold bed, trying not to think of her warm body pressing against his, her hands and lips exploring. He tries not to think of her as he tosses and turns, but when the daylight comes, he'll go down to breakfast and she'll be there at the table, doing the daily crossword puzzle. She'll sip her coffee, tell him he looks like death warmed over, and then cover her mouth in horror because it kind of has.
He'll tell her not to worry about it, and he'll sit down opposite her, taking the other sections of paper that are scattered across the table's surface.
He can't love this quirk of a woman.
But he'll glance at her and their eyes will lock over her cup of coffee, and he'll love her anyway.