(Originally written for twigletqueen at hp tradeoff )
"Two pairs!" Sirius exclaimed, grinning triumphantly before laying down his hand. He grinned at Remus expectantly, and his grin became wider when Remus' expression fell.
"Straight, Queen high."
Sirius' eyes widened and his gaze alternated between the cards on the table and the slow smile appearing on Remus' face.
"Goddamnit, Moony!" Sirius growled and started shuffling again.
"Hey, that's the first hand I've won!" Remus said defensively. He crossed his arms and sat back in his chair smugly. He couldn't believe he was playing poker. Not even wizard poker either, although they were playing with wizarding playing cards that were enchanted to speak, but only to the person who was holding the cards. Usually they just grumbled, but occasionally they had good advice, as was the case with his last hand.
Not only could Remus not believe he was playing poker when he should be working on his Herbology assignment, but he was playing poker with Sirius, and only Sirius. Usually James or Peter was there to diffuse the attention from himself, but they had gone home over the Christmas holidays, leaving Sirius bored and all but begging Remus to play poker with him. Now, as Sirius sat across the table from him with all his attention focused on Remus, Remus felt himself squirm a little inside at their eye contact. Not often were those grey eyes directed solely at him, although Remus had looked up a few times during Transfiguration after feeling those eyes on him. When he had turned towards Sirius, though, the eyes quickly averted to parchment or Professor McGonagall. Remus chalked it up to his own imagination seeing what he wanted to see, because the truth of the matter was he liked those eyes being focused on him and only him. While he usually shied away from the attention of others, he found himself craving Sirius' in a way that was new, exciting, and just a little frightening. He pulled in his chair to the table when he realized that he was getting hard just looking at Sirius shuffling cards with his sleeves rolled up.
"How about we up the ante?" Sirius said, still shuffling with a grace that Remus didn't know he possessed.
"Padfoot, you know I can't…" Remus said warningly.
"No, not for money. Let's play strip poker."
"Strip poker?" Remus raised an eyebrow. "Hardly fun when we've seen each other naked a dozens of times."
Remus felt the familiar twinge of panic in his chest when he thought about taking his clothes off in front of Sirius. The panic grew stronger when he thought about the very non-platonic things Sirius would see if he had to take off his trousers. This panic was balanced, however, by the not altogether unpleasant thought of seeing Sirius without clothes on. Remus didn't allow himself to dwell on that, though. That would only produce the non-platonic things he had been thinking on earlier.
"Come on Moony, it'll be fun," Sirius prodded. He grinned at Remus with the grin he knew Remus couldn't refuse, and Remus agreed with a light sigh after making sure there was no one else in the common room. Not that many people had stayed over the Christmas holidays. In fact, Remus found it odd that only he and Sirius and a few first- and second-years were staying. He was glad Sirius was staying with him, if only to keep him entertained. In his fifth year, there had been more people staying, but somehow he had been more lonesome than now when it was just him and Sirius.
The first two games Sirius won, earning him Remus' socks and shirt after a little complaining on Remus' part. The third belonged to Remus and Sirius took off his shirt unabashed, leaving his socks on. Remus tried not to stare at the definition of muscle on Sirius' body. He had to have seen Sirius shirtless hundreds of times, but he'd never had the luxury of staring at him like he did now. It was unavoidable, as Sirius was right in front of him, and if Remus looked just over his cards he could see Sirius' shoulders and (he swallowed) his chest and torso until it disappeared under the table.
He made himself look away as Sirius dealt the cards quickly. Remus picked them up and smiled inwardly. He almost had a flush, he realized, if he just got rid of the Jack of spades and the Queen of diamonds. He was careful not to smile on the outside. Sirius was brilliant at telling when people were bluffing, as he had learned the hard way.
"So, Moony, have you asked Patricia out yet?" Sirius asked as he studied his cards.
"Er…no. Remind me why I would, exactly?" Remus asked, slightly confused as to why Sirius immediately assumed he was interested in Patricia Winningham, a sixth year Gryffindor like himself.
"Well, you've been tutoring her, haven't you?"
Remus rearranged his cards and shot Sirius a look.
"I'm tutoring her, so I must want to shag her, is that it?"
Sirius grinned. "Do you?"
"No!" Remus exclaimed, both to the five of spades he just picked up and to the allegations.
"Well, then who do you want to shag?"
"Sirius, it's really none of your business," Remus replied airily, trying to be aloof instead of blushing like the thirteen year old that he felt like. He matched Sirius' bet and raised him.
"Good hand, have you Remus?"
Remus shrugged in a non-committal manner.
"Why is who I want to shag suddenly so important?" Remus asked, anxious to draw Sirius' attention away from his hand.
"Just curious, is all."
Sirius raised Remus higher and Remus met the bet after getting the four of hearts he was after.
"Who do you want to shag?" Remus asked, a little hesitantly. He really didn't want to know the answer to the question if it wasn't his name.
"Everyone," Sirius answered with a careless shrug.
"Everyone?" Remus asked incredulously.
"Well, not everyone," Sirius qualified. "Not that Gertrude Whatshername from Slytherin, or anyone in Slytherin, really. Probably not most of Hufflepuff either, except for Morgan Aberdeen…and their seeker."
Remus started a little as he reached for a card. The Hufflepuff seeker was not someone he would have thought Sirius would want to shag. Mainly because he was decidedly not female. He avoided Sirius' eye as he adjusted his cards.
"So, everyone else is fair game?"
"Yup," Sirius said with a grin.
"Ever thought about shagging anyone in Gryffindor?" Remus asked carefully. He picked up another heart and had a full flush; he got ready to call, but first he bet more than he normally would. Sirius raised an eyebrow at his bet before answering the question.
"Of course." He stared at the chips on the table and then back at Remus. "What the hell have you got, Moony? I bet you've got nothing."
"Or maybe I've got something," Remus answered elusively.
"No, I don't think you do," Sirius said pensively. His eyes darted alternatively to his cards and back to the table.
Remus shrugged and set down his cards face down. He crossed his arms across his chest, suddenly a little cold.
"Have you ever thought about shagging one of us?" Sirius asked with a half smile. He avoided Remus' eyes as he met Remus' bet.
"No, of course not," Remus said quickly. A little too quickly, he reflected after.
"No?" Sirius' eyes were teasing and innocent, dispelling any thought Remus had that he was serious.
"No," Remus answered firmly. There was no point in opening that can of worms, he thought to himself. Sirius would want to know who and then he would have to tell him. He swallowed nervously at the thought of telling Sirius the kinds of thoughts he had been having about him lately. Mainly the thoughts involving shagging him on the bearskin rug that his bare feet were currently rubbing against.
"All right, Lupin," Sirius said after a moment. "I call your bluff."
"Flush," Remus said with a smile as he turned over his cards.
"Not that bluff," Sirius said in a low voice and Remus looked up, confused, until his eyes met Sirius'. The look in his eyes was enough to make Remus' breath hitch, if not stop altogether. Sirius leaned over the small chess table they had been using to place their cards on and guided Remus' head gently towards his. Remus' heart felt like it might burst it was beating so fast, and he wondered how Sirius could be so calm until he realised that the hand on his cheek was shaking. He opened his eyes, though he didn't remember closing them, wondering what Sirius was playing at. And then Sirius closed the rest of the distance between them and pressed his lips to Remus'. He made to lean back but Remus snaked a hand behind his head and pulled him closer. Remus hoped desperately that this wasn't another one of Sirius' games. He kissed harder, more earnestly in case it was. Just as Remus was going to open his mouth, Sirius broke the kiss and leaned back into his chair, panting a little.
Remus' felt his face go red and avoided Sirius' eyes, afraid of what he might find there. If he looked up and found that Sirius was teasing, he couldn't think of any excuse to warrant what had just happened. If, on the other hand, he looked up and found desire. . . Remus looked up and saw that Sirius was standing. His heart fell to his stomach.
"Three of a kind," Sirius said, motioning to the cards on the table. Remus couldn't help the expression of confusion and hurt that crept onto his face. Sirius was just going to keep playing like nothing had happened?
"I thought I'd better take off my trousers," Sirius was saying, "since you won."
Remus' mouth fell agape as he watched Sirius undo his belt (slower than strictly necessary) and the buttons on his trousers. He then proceeded to move the zipper down one tooth at a time until Remus' toes were painfully curled into the bear skin rug and he was itching to get his own trousers off.
When Sirius finally got his trousers off, he didn't try to hide the evidence of his non-platonic feelings. He couldn't have, even if he wanted to. It was pointing Remus in the face. Somewhat literally.
Sirius pulled back the chess table, leaving Remus somewhat exposed.
"I was bluffing earlier," Remus said, admitting to the obvious non-platonic reaction going on in his pants.
"I could tell," Sirius answered breathily as he started to straddle Remus in the chair. "I wouldn't have kissed you if I wasn't sure. I wouldn't have gambled our friendship like a game of…"
"Poker?" Remus finished.
Sirius smiled and nudged his hips forward into Remus'. They both gasped at the sudden contact.
"Maybe I'd better take my trousers off too," Remus managed. "You know, for the game that you won earlier."
"It seems only fair," Sirius agreed.
What followed was a lot of moaning, kissing, licking and wondering why they hadn't done this earlier.
About a week after James and Peter came back from holiday, James suggested they play poker. Remus and Sirius immediately began snickering and then laughing uncontrollably until James shouted, "What in the hell has gotten into you lot?" They only laughed harder when James asked Peter to play with him alone. James just shook his head, too accustomed to living with them to really question their apparent insanity.
"Bloody wankers," he mumbled before he descended the stairs, leaving Sirius and Remus to their own brand of madness.