Autumn

He didn't tell many people this, but autumn was Sirius Black's favourite season. You might think he'd love summer, not having to be in classes or winter with the snowball fights or even spring when the weather turns warmer but no. Autumn was his very favourite.

He just thought it was so pretty. Which was precisely why he kept this information to himself. Once it got out that Sirius Black thought coloured leaves were pretty, someone would get it in their heads that he was a bit poofy and his reputation would be forever ruined. Not that he wasn't a bit poofy – he was – but he didn't need everyone else knowing it too.

Sirius thought autumn was pretty but he also thought his friend Remus Lupin was – well perhaps not pretty – but he made Sirius' insides ache in the same way as the very first red leaf in the fall. Which is perhaps why he found himself walking on the outskirts of the Forbidden Forest with Remus beside him, looking at the leaves and wondering how he was going to tell Remus how he felt about him.

"You okay, Padfoot?" Remus asked, looking at him from under his fringe that was always half an inch too long and drove Sirius up the wall.

"Yeah, I just…" Sirius started and then stopped. "Isn't autumn the very best season?"

Remus smiled a little and nodded. "It's one of my favourites."

"There are only four seasons, Moony," Sirius pointed out.

"Yes, but –" Remus sighed. "Summer is all warm and the nights are shorter and spring is when everything comes back to life so I love it too. And I love winter because winter is Christmas and my birthday and snowball fights..."

Sirius nodded in agreement.

"But autumn is so beautiful," Remus finished, his gaze lifted up to the brightly coloured leaves.

Sirius watched him for a moment before choosing that moment to tackle him. And tackle him he did into a great big pile of orange, yellow and red leaves. They landed with an oomph in the strangely soft cushion of leaves. Before Remus had a change to recover though, Sirius had rolled over and on top of him.

"Hullo Sirius," Remus said softly once had caught his breath.

"Hullo Remus," Sirius replied. He wiped Remus' fringe out of his eyes with his right hand while his left held up his body weight. He only wanted to confess his feelings, not kill poor Moony. Also, if he was on top of him, Moony couldn't run off until Sirius had properly said what he needed to say. Sirius opened his mouth to speak and froze. Remus' eyes were staring up at him, all inquiry and innocence and Sirius wondered how anything so plain (Remus' eyes were quite a dull shade of brown) could look so amazingly brilliant.

"Sirius?"

Sirius snapped to. "Moony, I have to tell you something."

"Is it that you've decided to kill me by squishing me?" Remus quipped.

"No," Sirius said, mortified. He started to climb off Remus when there was a hand around his wrist.

"Stay," Remus whispered, "you're warm."

"Okay," Sirius replied, not sure why they were whispering except that every molecule in his being told him that this was a Very Important Moment and that whispering was the thing to do. He could feel Remus' warmth underneath him and while this sent a large shock of excitement through his whole body, he tried to concentrate on the task at hand. He had very important things to say.

"Moony, I-" he started once again before getting distracted once again by Remus' strangely glimmering brown eyes. Without realising what he was doing, he shifted his position and bent down closer so he could see Remus better and before he knew it he was about three inches away from Remus' face.

We're breathing in the same breath, he thought dizzily. Remus stared back up at him, unblinking. Sirius froze.

"Are you going to kiss me, or…?" Remus asked, a small smile coming to his face.

Sirius didn't think before closing the gap between them. He didn't even hesitate before pressing his lips to Remus as if it was the most natural thing in the world. And the strange part of it all was that it was. It was the most natural thing in the world. Remus seemed to know exactly what to do and Sirius got the sense that he was doing what Remus wanted too and it was dizzying how he could just lose himself in Remus' kisses.

It seemed like the most natural thing in the world when Remus tangled a hand in his hair and it was completely natural when Sirius' hand went to Remus' cool cheek and stayed there, stroking gently. It was almost as if, Sirius reflected later, they had been born to do this very thing.

When they pulled back for a breath, Sirius left his hand on Remus' cheek. He was happy to see Remus was pleasantly flushed and was smiling up at him.

"Is that what you wanted to tell me?" Remus asked in a hoarse voice that sent shivers down Sirius' spine.

Sirius nodded. "Yeah. I think so."

"I'm not sure I understand," Remus said after a moment, a glint coming to his eyes. "Do you think you could tell me again?"

Sirius smirked and after looking to make sure no bothersome professors were lurking about, he told Remus again and again and again just to make sure he understood.