Warnings: Male/male sex. If you don't like men doing men, do not read. Also, language might be an issue for some people. If swearing bothers you. Please do not read.

Author Notes: Written for knitmeastory's Buzz-word Fic Challenge. My buzz-word was "latte."

Beta: Thanks, zeldaohzelda. You're a love.

"Dammit," Remus Lupin muttered under his breath. The train was due to leave any minute, and there was still no sign of Sirius, James, or Peter. He draped his school robes and tie over his right arm, as the nasty gash on his left was still sore.

Although he'd given up hope they'd catch the train, Remus secured their usual car. He reached into his pocket for the last of his Christmas chocolates. Christmas. What a disaster. Not that he blamed his parents. Christmas cheer and ho ho ho is an utterly ridiculous notion when your only son is manacled to his bed post in anticipation of him from tearing you from limb to limb. Three days later his mother hadn't even bothered to look up from her knitting as she murmured, "Bad luck. Christmas falling on the full moon." He'd grimaced and then forced the grimace into a smile, "Yes, Mother, bad luck. Did you like the handkerchiefs I gave you? Thought the monogramming was especially lovely."

The rush of steam and chug, chug, chug of the pistons as they left the station confirmed that there was no possible way they'd make the train now. Perhaps they'd floo into Hogsmeade…just then a tangle of limbs, arms, ties, and robes tumbled into the car.

"Told you we'd make it, Peter." Sirius balanced a paper coffee cup in one hand and with the other threw his robes onto the rack above Remus' head. Flopping down in the seat across from him, Sirius glared at Peter. "You've never heard such pissing and moaning in your life, Moony."

Peter blushed and tossed his robes and tie on top of Sirius'. Remus' shoulders dropped to their normal slouch. "I was beginning to wonder about you three."

"Pad's fault. As usual." James hiked a thumb in Sirius' direction before adding his own robes and tie to the pile. "Had to get his latte." James elongated the "a," in a snarky tone, accompanied by a sneer that left no one in doubt about how James felt about lattes. "His latest affectation. As if he needed another. He claims it's what they drink in cafes in Italy. Bollocks. Nothing but boiled milk and coffee. I tried one last week. Nasty swill. I still can't get the taste of it out from behind my teeth."

Sirius brought the paper cup up to his lips. A quick tongue whisked away a mustache of foamy milk.

"Shut it, Prongs. Think it's time I warned Evans about what an utter stick in the mud you are. Clearly, hols in Italy are not in her future. Day trips to Brighton are about all she can expect should she have the misfortune to settle with a hopeless twit like you."

Peter slid in next to Sirius; Remus braced himself for the inevitable.

"Love Brighton. My parents took me there last summer," Peter piped up.

Christ, right on schedule.

Sirius didn't bother to contain his irritation. Downing his coffee, he crushed the cup and threw it under his seat, hissing at Peter, "For God's sake, Peter. Just shut up."

"Lay off Peter," James ordered. "We did almost miss the train, you fucking wanker. Shove over, Moony. Just had to say goodbye to her, didn't you? Flashing those blue eyes of yours, while Peter and I froze our arses off waiting for you to sweet talk your little holiday shag into giving you a free caf."

"Free caf?" Remus repeated; his stomach roiled the chocolate around and around.

No one said another word the entire trip to Hogswart.

While they unpacked, James tried to make it up to Sirius with a running stream of consciousness, the sole purpose of which was to find ways to humiliate Severus Snape so thoroughly that a permanent stay in St. Mungo's was inevitable. Peter tried to jolly Sirius into forgiving James by offering to help him unpack and by enthusiastically endorsing every one of James' insane suggestions. They ignored Remus completely.

"J…j…james, what if we do a leg-locking curse in conjunction with the charm that removes all his clothes?" Peter stuttered, a sure sign he was nervous or upset. "Then he won't be able to run away. What do you t…t…t…think, Sirius?"

Sirius slammed shut the lid of his trunk even though he hadn't unpacked a single item and growled, "Honestly? I think I really have no desire to endure yet another hopelessly boring episode of the Saint-Remus-versus-fucked-up-piece-of-shit-Sirius show."

Remus brought his head up from his suitcase. The pair of socks in his hand dropped to the counterpane. "James. Peter. Leave."

James shrugged an apology in Sirius' direction before leaving the room, Peter's eyes narrowed in sly comprehension before ducking his head and following James out of the room. Remus wondered again for the umpteenth time why they constantly underestimated him.

"Look," Sirius kicked his trunk. "It was just a shag. Just a stupid shag. I was horny. It didn't mean anything."

One part of Remus, the detached analytical part (not the part that wanted to beat the shit out of Sirius), acknowledged they were playing the first movement of what Remus had privately named, "The Bastard Variations." The first movement consisted of the I-am-not-a-bastard-Remus-Lupin bit. Sirius, although completely unpredictable in every instance, was oddly predictable when apologizing. Therefore, Remus wasn't exactly surprised when Sirius segued without pause into the second movement; the Okay-I-admit-I-am-a-bastard-but-it's-your-fault bit.

The second movement was usually punctuated by frenetic pacing and arm waving. Sirius did not disappoint, raging and stomping around in haphazard loops and figure eights in front of Remus' bed, accompanied by somewhat coherent phrases intermingled with shouts and not-so-veiled reprimands.

"I begged to you come to James' house. Didn't I? But as usual, you made your typical pathetic excuse about your parents. You know the Potters would have done handsprings at the sight of you. The only voice of reason as far as they're concerned. But no. You entombed yourself away in that godforsaken corner of Lancashire, having the same conversation with those two every fucking day."

When Remus still didn't respond, just sat there on his bed worrying the gash, which was now sore and itchy, Sirius launched into the third movement: The Yes-I-am-a-complete-and-utter-bastard-and-you-must-forgive-me-because-I-am-hopeless-in-every-possible-way bit.

"Two weeks, Moony. Fuck!" Sirius ran his fingers through his hair. "You were a hundred kilometers away. Christ, you know what I'm like. And…and…I wanted…needed…I…I…I'm sorry."

Exhausted beyond belief after that perfectly hideous silence that had lasted the entire length of the country (who knew silence could take so much effort?), Remus half-heartedly considered just forgetting the whole thing. It probably was just eighteen-year old hormones gone completely berserk. Sirius' sex drive was a frequent topic of conversation in the boys' dormitory. As in, "Sirius Black would even get off fucking a sock puppet."

Sirius had stopped pacing and turning, just stood there, the bravado and sass that defined Sirius gone, shirt bunched around his waist in blousy dishabille from all the arm-waving. Sirius brought up a visibly shaking hand to push against his forehead. "Remus, I'm really sorry. Please forgive me. Promise I won't go back there. Absolutely promise."

The final movement: which Remus had never given a name to because this Sirius, tentative and so unsure of himself, eluded definition. Remus fought the desire to still Sirius' hand, now back to running agitated fingers through his hair. Uncertainty, triumphant for once over the insufferable arrogance, the refusal to question anything, the fucking sense of right. If he'd had the energy, Remus might have even smiled at the irony of this. Because part of Sirius' undeniable beauty was his confidence, which always caught Remus' fancy, the absence of it his heart.

"Moony?"

Remus closed his eyes. Right. It had been a couple of weeks. He'd been terribly lonely himself (of course, he hadn't gone around propositioning and shagging shopgirls, but then again, he'd been chained to a bedpost for two days). But the reproach in Sirius' voice, "I begged you to come."

Just as he was about to utter a defeated, "Okay, Pads. Okay," Sirius muttered, "Bloody James. He bollocked it up, stupid prat."

Suddenly, Remus found himself across the room, pinning Sirius to the wall, both hands clutching Sirius' shoulders in a vicious grip he hoped would hurt Sirius, bruise him, maybe even scar him.

"James bollocked it up, did he?" Remus pulled Sirius away from the wall, just enough, and then slammed him back against the stone. "You had no intention of telling me, did you? How completely inconvenient of James. You really must find more accommodating friends, Sirius, so that…"

As the smell of Sirius' sweat and fear rose, so did the faint smell of a woman, the soap she used, sweet and a bit cloying, intermingled with her own mossy underscent. If Remus thought he was angry before, it was nothing, nothing compared to the complete rage that consumed him now. He dropped his hands, as if the touch of Sirius against his fingers and palms scalded him. He began sniffing. All over. The scent of her was on Sirius' hair, his skin. Remus licked Sirius' neck. Oh. Fuck.

"You complete and utter bastard," Remus whispered into Sirius' ear and stepped back just enough to clutch at the points of his shirt collar. With a vicious tug, he began to rip Sirius's clothes off of his body. "Didn't even have the decency," the room filled with the harsh scratch of fabric being ripped, the pop and ping of shirt buttons as they hit the floor, "to take…" Remus spun around Sirius so that Sirius faced the wall and then yanked the ripped shirt off his back…, "a fucking shower this morning after you fucked her…" With both hands, Remus grabbed the back of Sirius' trousers ripped them open along the back seamline and yanked them down. The movement pushed them both off balance, and they fell over onto the floor with an oomph.

Flinging aside the remaining shreds of Sirius' trousers and pants, Remus spit on his hands and began running them over Sirius' body, following his movements with his tongue, covering every inch of Sirius' body with his own scent. He spit repeatedly into his hands to caress Sirius' neck, collarbone, nipples, arms, stomach, cock, balls, Sirius' thighs, his kneecaps, his ankles, even his toes and the instep of his feet. Claiming, reclaiming him. Marking him as clearly as if he'd bitten him.

"Turn over," Remus demanded and then didn't wait for Sirius to obey, but flipped Sirius over onto his stomach and did the same thing, spit into his hands and ground his scent into every muscle, every plane of skin he could reach, the flat of his hands slowly and methodically obliterating her scent, his tongue following suit.

Sirius began to pant and shiver violently, but Remus didn't pay any attention. Running his tongue over the plump curve Sirius' arse and then the crease, oh god, he could taste her even there, he began licking and sucking in a desperate attempt to lap up every trace of her.

Suddenly, Sirius shoved his arse back into Remus' face with a whimper and then begged in a helpless litany of need, "FuckmeMoonynowpleasegodMoonypleaseinmesomethinginmeohmygodinmenow."

As quickly as it had come, the rage left. He ran his hands over Sirius' trembling thighs, He trailed his fingers over the tight muscles in Sirius' back and then down to his arse and began stroking the cleft in time to Sirius' frantic attempts for more.

A hoarse muttering and then a tube of lube flew across the room into Sirius' outstretched hand. He kept his hand aloft and shook it in command for Remus to take it.

Remus took the lube out of Sirius' hand. He squeezed a fat dollop on two fingers and then stopped. "We haven't, I haven't…"

Shimmying his arse in Remus' direction, Sirius rasped, "Fuck me with your fingers right now and then fuck me with that stupendous cock of yours."

Remus hesitated, staring at the lube glistening on his fingers, not sure if this wasn't a fool's bargain, Sirius' desperate attempt to elicit forgiveness at any cost. Then a small voice asked, "Moony, make love to me. Please."

Sirius talked him through it, the slow slide, the angling, the thrust and roll of hips, the absolute rhythmic beauty of two bodies moving in tandem. It felt odd not to bottom and yet also right, some tacit acknowledgment that Sirius gave himself because he expected so much.

Remus lay on top of Sirius, the scent of fuck heavy in the air, hands covering hands, legs covering legs, sweaty sticky torso against equally sweaty sticky back, wet groin cupping equally wet arse.

Sirius leaned his neck a little in a silent beg. Remus complied and licked, smiling at Sirius' hiss of pleasure.

"You're still a bastard," Remus reminded him.

"Never denied it, did I? You should top more often, Moony. That was fucking brilliant." Sirius rolled his arse into Remus' groin for emphasis. Remus laughed and pushed back. "Will go too far one day, won't I?" Sirius kissed the top of Remus' hand.

"Yes, I expect so," Remus said lightly, not wanted to break this happy, lazy, post-coital lassitude. Christmas had been so horrible. Was it wrong to want this?

Sirius kissed his other hand. "But not today?"

"No," Remus agreed, "Not today," and nuzzled a flushed shoulder. God he was so beautiful. "We should get up. James and Peter will want to finish unpacking before dinner."

"Bugger 'em," Sirius snorted. "It's my turn to fuck you blind. But on the bed, my knees are broken," and he wiggled a little and Remus rolled off. They lay on the floor propped up on their elbows, faces flushed, cocks half hard.

Remus pushed on his elbow to hoist himself up when he was stopped by a hand to his cheek.

"Christmas fell on the full moon."

It wasn't a question.

"Hmmmm."

"Oh, Moony," Sirius whispered. Leaning over, he kissed Remus, his lips soft and gentle, when it's not about fucking but about comfort.

Remus leaned into it, parted Sirius' lips with his tongue, and thought, my God, will this man always be able to do this to me? A million apologies in his hand, with a million forgivenesses in mine?

As Sirius returned the kiss, slick tongue brushing over slick tongue, the sweet taste of milk and nutty tang of coffee filled his mouth. He pulled away and stood up. To Sirius' confused, "Moony?" he muttered, "Got to brush my teeth."

He hoped he'd make it to the bathroom on time.