A/N: This fic was originally written as a secret santa gift on LJ community sirry slash, for the lovely myss naughty. The original version was NC-17, so this version has been toned down somewhat and has lost several paragraphs in the process.

Disclaimer: Harry and Sirius are wildly in love, but sadly JKR has deemed their incredibly passionate love affair to be unsuitable material for children's books, so I have had to borrow them from her to write this fic. I'll give them back much happier than before, and of course no profit will be made. Do I really look pimp-ish to you? shifty eyes


When Sirius Black returned from beyond the veil he was very confused.

Falling through the veil was supposed to mean instant death, but apparently the Ministry hadn't read the operating instructions correctly, because five years, five months and four days after he toppled through, the veil spat him back out again. This was the start of his confusion.

The first thing he saw as he opened his eyes was a slightly older version of Hermione Granger, and she was grinning in a disturbingly manic manner, alarmingly reminiscent of his evil cousin Bellatrix. Which made Sirius remember what was just happening, so he sprang to his feet seeking the enemy, only to find a small circle of what looked to be a group of dignified ministry employees huddled around him. All with looks of wonder on their faces.

He blinked dazedly and dimly heard Hermione's voice saying smugly, "I told you I could do it."

But he paid little attention to her as she gleefully began spouting numbers and impossible concepts about concentrated space time reversals and other incomprehensible things.

His eyes were on Harry. But what a different Harry, and Sirius couldn't help but stare uncomprehendingly. While his godson was still recognisable as such, the scrawny teenager he had seen moments before had somehow been replaced with a lean hard-looking man.

His legs began to shake. None of this made sense.

Harry's eyes narrowed, and catching the slight movement he began shouldering past a few other ministry types standing between him and Sirius. When they tried to halt his progress he shook them off and stared them down. "Can't you see he doesn't understand what is happening here?" He barked. "He needs to be moved to someplace he will feel safe and have the situation thoroughly explained by people who give a damn about him."

"Harry." Sirius croaked. "An explanation would suit me down to the ground."

Hermione was touching his arm now, making him jump and wobble unsteadily. "You fell through the veil Sirius, it didn't actually kill you, as we thought for a long time it had, but it did take me some time to figure out how to get you back."

Sirius was no fool, and without taking his eyes from the approaching Harry he muttered, "Quite a bit of time I see."

Harry nodded jerkily, "I'm twenty-one now."

Sirius closed his eyes, "So I missed even more of your life. I'm a terrible godfather."

Harry opened his mouth to dispute this, but Sirius cut him off with a yelp as he saw aurors standing by, "Why aren't I being arrested?"

Ron stepped up behind Harry and produced the enchanted cuffs he carried with a smile. "I'm an auror now Sirius, and I'm the one who finally brought in that miserable rat Wormtail, so I don't think arresting you is necessary anymore but I guess I could still arrest you if you like."

Hermione glared at Ron and hesitantly patted Sirius' arm. "Your name was cleared Sirius. You're a free man."

"I think there is a lot of catching up to do." Harry said quietly.

Sirius couldn't help but nod dumbly in agreement.

The multitudes of paperwork that Sirius' re-appearance generated was enough to mildly infuriate even Hermione, and Sirius was soon interchangeably threatening to blow up or sue the ministry if they made Hermione, Harry and himself sign anything else.

The ministry prudently decided not to antagonize Sirius any further and Sirius soon found himself portkeying away, reluctantly released by the ministry into the care of his godson.

He landed almost knee deep in snow and looked at his godson with quizzical surprise.

"I know it was summer for you, but now at least you're home in time for Christmas." Harry said gently. "I'm sure you have realised you've been gone nearly five and a half years."

Sirius nodded unhappily. "It will take me some getting used to."

Harry nodded as he turned Sirius to face a house, "For us too Sirius. I mourned you as dead for years."

Sirius didn't even want to think about that. "Where are we?"

"My home in Scotland, not too far from Hogsmeade. I bought this place six months ago after the final fall of Voldemort, it is well protected and reporters don't know where it is and I thought it might be best if you stayed put with me in safety, at least until I can tell you the important parts about the years you missed."

"Fall of Voldemort!" Sirius shrieked. Then he leaped in the air and yelled happily. "Yah! Woooo!" Then coming back to earth he eyed Harry nervously, "Er, he is actually properly dead this time right?"

Harry took his arm and began to drag him towards the house, "Yes, he's gone forever this time, and I can see this might take a while to explain, so lets go get started."

Sirius sighed happily at the blissful warmth and smell of baking as he stepped over the threshold of Harry's home. "I'm really free." He said happily as he looked at the cosy hallway and let Harry take his cloak. "This is nice. Proper homely."

Harry smiled genuinely for the first time and guided Sirius into the small, snug kitchen where mince pies, rich fruitcake and mulled wine waited.

Sirius had eaten virtually half the cake before he was aware of Harry watching him with a mildly amused expression on his face.

He swiped at his chin, brushing away a few crumbs and smiled irrepressibly. "Sorry, but you have to admit five years is a long time without food."

"You haven't aged at all you incorrigible piglet," Harry replied softly. "I'm glad, because missing five years but still aging would be even more unfair than what did happen to you."

Sirius sighed and drained his wineglass. "I brought that on myself. I was just so tired of always being shut away and made to hide that any solid excuse to go out and get involved was good enough for me. Besides, I couldn't not go - It was you in danger."

"But I got fooled by Voldemort and led you into the trap." Harry countered.

Sirius had taken a deep breath and was about to thoroughly blast Harry's misplaced notions of self-blame when a figure tumbled out of the fire and sprawled on the rug, closely followed by another.

"Remus and Tonks." Harry sighed. "I should have just invited you along for tea shouldn't I?"

Both nodded fervently and Sirius was quick to drag Remus into his arms, only to find himself squeezed to within an inch of his life by an overwhelmed werewolf, and Tonks added to the squeeze by throwing her arms around both of them.

Harry watched wistfully. Suddenly he felt like an intruder. Perhaps Remus would be a better choice to fill Sirius in on the details of his missing years?

Then suddenly Sirius stretched out an arm, grabbed him and was clutching him too and they were all almost crying.

It took some minutes for them to all untangle themselves and settle down and seat themselves at Harry's kitchen table.

Then they stared at each other.

"Where do we start?" Harry appealed to Remus.

"The beginning is usually a good place you muttonheads," Sirius put in cheekily.

Tonks and Remus exchanged worried looks and Harry bit his lip. Sirius wouldn't even like hearing about the prophecy now it was over, and that was right at the beginning.

Seeing the expressions on his friend's faces Sirius pushed his plate away and rapped on the table. "Oi! Story time. I know some of it must be really nasty, I know there must have been losses and tragedies for our side - but just bloody tell me."

So Harry began the story. For what may have been the first time in his life Sirius sat still and listened without interrupting. Harry talked for hours, through the afternoon and into the evening until darkness fell and his voice became a rough rasp. When he came to the death of Dumbledore silent tears ran down his face and Remus put an encouraging hand on his shoulder. Sirius wished he had thought to offer the comfort, but would Harry accept that from him now?

In truth, he barely knew him anymore. He'd last seen Harry as a child, now he was dealing with the young man he had become.

When it became clear that Harry was struggling to speak through emotion Remus took up the tale. With Tonks inserting the odd story or comment the whole tale unfolded.

Remus' descriptions of the destruction of the horcruxes and the final battle with Voldemort and his forces made Sirius feel sick. He didn't have a clue how the three people sitting in front of him had survived such trauma.

Now he looked at Harry with that information in mind he could see how withdrawn and sad he was, even six months later, and he resolved that he was finally going to get to know the real Harry and be a proper godfather.


It took several days for Sirius to even begin to assimilate all the information about the time he had lost. Even then he was constantly getting surprises.

Offhand comments about smaller aspects of life still had the power to shock him.

But he thought personally that he was doing very well taking everything in. Remus had actually been anxious that he would not be happy to be brought back to life. But Sirius was very glad not to be dead, and quickly disabused him of such a notion. It was certainly baffling, and a little disconcerting to discover yourself five years behind everyone else, it was also strange to have missed out on so many important events, but Sirius had clawed back from being twelve years behind after Azkaban and felt sure he could manage it again. Only this time he had a chance at a proper life to look forward to.

The only thing Sirius wasn't happy about was his relationship with Harry. Harry seemed to be on a mission to blame himself for everything that had ever gone wrong in Sirius' life. He'd decided that even the years in Azkaban were indirectly his fault, and Sirius hadn't yet worked out how to reason with him. He was used to a passionate boy with a furious temper, not a solemn young man hauling the weight of the world about with him.

He'd wanted a chance to be a proper godfather, and although he could admit that he was probably a decade or so too late to be of much use, it would have been nice to get the opportunity. It didn't seem to be happening though.

As far as he could see, Harry was holding everyone at arms length.

So he decided that a private chat with the sensible all-knowing Hermione would be his first priority. It took him a week to get her alone, but when he did, his meagre patience was rewarded. Harry had been withdrawn and quiet for a very long time according to Hermione. The change dated back to Sirius' own 'death', and had got worse with each loss of life for the Order.

Sirius almost fell off his chair when he discovered Harry blamed himself most for his boyfriend's death. "I thought he was crazy about that Ravenclaw girl!" Sirius yelped at Hermione. "And I saw her at the ministry, she was one of the gawkers there when you brought me back."

Her face shaped itself into a displeased expression. "That was five years ago Sirius, and the extent of their relationship was a single kiss. There have been a few other girls since, including Ginny, as well as two boys."

"Including Terry Boot. The one Harry blames himself for almost as much as he blames himself over me and Dumbledore. Even though it wasn't remotely his fault that this lad bravely chose to fight three death eaters - using spells Harry taught him -and died doing it." Sirius finished for her. "See, this is my problem. He tells me nothing of this sort of thing. He just sits back and counts the ways he is guilty, and doesn't give me a chance to stop him thinking this way. I don't know anything about his private life. I didn't even know he dated guys. Let alone that he firmly believes that he got one of them killed!"

Hermione nodded eagerly. "If you just talk to him about some of this stuff he might begin to forgive himself."

"Which is why you cudgelled your brain until you figured out how to bring me back." Sirius said perceptively "You wanted Harry to have one less thing to beat himself up about."

Hermione flushed and then nodded firmly. "I didn't think you deserved what happened to you, and I found that it was within my power to rectify it, so I did. But yes, mostly I did it for Harry. And it worked. You have no idea how much better he is now you're here."

Sirius gave her a disbelieving look. "Better? How is he better? The boy is a wreck."

"Trust me, he is. He used to listen to you Sirius. He loves you. Maybe you can get him to listen again."

Sirius snorted. "I think I'm a little late to step in with godfatherly stuff. I'm not that much mature than he is really."

"So be a friend." Hermione snapped.

"He has lots of those and it doesn't seem to be helping." Sirius said gloomily.

"Ooooh. You! You're as bad as he is."

"Who is?" Harry asked as he entered his kitchen.

"You two!" Hermione grumbled, waving her arms at them both. "Stubborn and moody. You deserve each other. I'm off. I'll see you both for dinner at my house at 7 sharp. Be in a better mood by then please." And with that she flooed out.

Harry scratched at his messy hair, "What got into her?"

"Apparently nothing." Sirius snorted. "That girl needs a thorough shagging, she's wound way too tight."

Harry's eyes bugged out and he stifled a nervous laugh.

Sirius grinned evilly. "I'm kidding."

Harry nodded and sank into a chair. He stared at his hands and seemed to be searching for something to say.

Sirius shook his head sadly. He couldn't go around making off-colour remarks all the time, but at least it had got a reaction out of Harry, so clearly something needed to be done - something drastic or dramatic.

Sirius was good at drastic and dramatic.

What though? He pondered as he absently admired the way the bright winter sunlight streamed through the window and gave strange rusty highlights to Harry's black hair.

He was thoughtfully slurping coffee and considering various schemes of varying levels of daftness when he found himself vaguely wondering how the calluses on Harry's long elegant fingers would feel on his own skin and promptly spewed coffee on the table.

The alarmed look Harry gave him in response was enough to set him off laughing maniacally.

Harry produced a cloth and mopped up the spill wordlessly.

Sirius was still cackling to himself when Harry began opening cupboards, apparently intending to prepare lunch.

Sirius finally shut up and poured himself more coffee. He watched Harry as he worked efficiently to prepare them both a meal. His head was whirling, and he didn't like all of his thoughts. He was supposed to be trying to help Harry, not be thinking distinctly dubious thoughts about him.

But Sirius had never been one to deceive himself for long. He inevitably faced things head on and with all the subtlety of a bludger.

Firstly, Harry had grown into an attractive man. Okay, he could accept that. Harry was attractive, that was an impartial observation. Not pervy in any way shape or form.

Secondly, he wanted to know what it would be like to kiss him. Which was a bad thought and should probably be squashed.

Thirdly, he was considering the possibility of convincing people into believing that by subtracting the seventeen years spent in Azkaban and behind the veil from his real age it would actually make him the perfect age to be snogging Harry.

Fourthly, he was wondering if there was something really good in this coffee that was making him think such bizarre thoughts.

The next thing he was aware of was a hand waving back and forth in front of his face. Sirius snorted in surprise and grabbed the hand to stop it. Harry was grinning at him a little.

"I made your favourite ham pie with mashed spuds if you want some."

Sirius beamed at him and planted a juicy kiss on Harry's knuckles without thinking, "Many thanks good sir!"

Harry blushed and when Sirius let him go he hurried to fix two plates of food.

Sirius watched the blush with interest and decided that it wouldn't hurt Harry to have something new to think about. So he winked at Harry as he poured pumpkin juice into two glasses and when he took his seat Sirius took a huge forkful of mash and slowly, suggestively licked it off his fork.

The flush and stare from Harry pleased Sirius enormously but he was hungry and started to eat properly, for the moment unaware of Harry's confused but intrigued gaze.

They ate in silence, each one feeling slightly confused by Sirius' actions.

Sirius broke the silence by announcing, "You know, my birth record will say I'm forty years old this year, but I think I could get away with subtracting seventeen years from that, which makes me twenty-three I think."

Harry stared at his plate, "Your birth record won't say anything Sirius. I got you killed remember? You have a death certificate instead."

Sirius waved aside this maudlin comment with aplomb. "Well even better then, I can tell people I'm twenty-three and my birth record won't contradict me. I wonder if I could get it made official. The ministry does owe me."

Harry stared at him, "How can you possibly be okay with this? I got you killed. It was my fault!"

"No you didn't." Sirius replied smugly. "I'm sitting at your kitchen table pinching ham out of your slice of pie while you sit about feeling too guilty to notice."

Harry glanced down in exasperation and discovered that Sirius was indeed stealing from his plate. "Stop it!"

"Stop what?" Sirius responded innocently. "Stop trying to persuade you that I am a grown man and as such should be responsible for my own actions?"

Harry glared at him and moved his plate out of reach. "It was still my fault."

"If you must keep on and on with saying that I'll transfigure you into a parrot so you can do the thing properly." Sirius threatened.

Harry glared. "I just don't understand how you can be so forgiving. It really was my fault."

Sirius stuck his fingers in his ears, "La la la la la. I'm not listening."

Harry huffed angrily at him and sank back into his chair. Sirius was by far the most difficult man on earth.

Suddenly a blob of mashed potato was flung across the table to splatter on his front.

Harry blinked in surprise as a chunk of gravy covered ham followed.

Before he knew what he'd done he'd flung a spoonful back.

Sirius grinned at him. "That's more like it." Then before Harry had time to react further he upended the gravy boat into Harry's lap and ran out of the back door into the snow-covered yard.

Harry followed in hot pursuit and the snowball fight raged fast and furious. Harry was determined to get Sirius good for the gravy. It was starting to freeze to his trousers and it felt distinctly unpleasant.

Sirius capered about madly, seeming to take as much joy in being hit by a snowball as throwing one squarely at Harry.

Harry couldn't help but be moved by such infectious enthusiasm and joined Sirius in his madness. But before he knew it he'd been tackled by Padfoot and had his face licked disgustingly.

"Unfair advantage!" He hollered as he tried to wipe his face before the doggy spit froze.

Suddenly Sirius was the one panting gleefully into his face, and Harry swallowed hard. Three inches would be all it would take to close the gap between their mouths… and why the hell was he suddenly measuring the distance between his lips and Sirius'?

He had to admit there was always something about Sirius that drew him though. At first he had thought it was simply Sirius' close connection to his dead father and the friendship he offered. But as he grew older he had realised he loved Sirius simply for the crazy man he was. Now he was scared of what he was feeling. The last person Harry had felt this stomach churning anticipation for had been Terry Boot, and he had been dead more than a year now thanks to Harry. Even if it wasn't wrong to think that way about Sirius it wasn't something he could risk.

His face darkened and Sirius caught the change of mood and sighed.

"Whatever you're thinking stop. I can tell that it isn't pleasant."

"What of it?" Came the dull response.

"Because I don't like seeing it. I love you and I hate how unhappy you've become."

Harry blinked.

"And don't you dare try to tell me you deserve to feel like this. You are a decent bloke who has had some real shit shovelled your way. None of the crap that happened was your fault."

"But I-"

"Do you really think you could have done something better than what you have done? Voldemort is gone and the world is safe again thanks to you."

"Only because of what the prophecy said."

Sirius growled, "So you don't want to take credit for the good stuff the prophecy brought. You only want to take credit for the fact that it harmed a whole bunch of people around you. I don't seem to recall you asking to be the subject of that prophecy, so therefore it isn't your fault."

Harry blinked at him. "But I still could have done something better sometimes. I made so many mistakes."

"Don't we all. Hindsight is always bloody perfect, and you can see exactly what you should have done. Sometimes I look back and wonder what I was thinking to allow a little git like Peter to be secret keeper for my best mate and his family. Surely I should have done it myself? Surely I should have known what would happen? And of course that means it was my fault that two of the people I loved best died because I made a bad decision."

Harry stared at him, "You couldn't have known what Wormtail would do!"

Sirius put on a mournful expression and shook his head. "But I made that choice, and therefore it was entirely my fault."

Harry pushed Sirius off him with a furious look on his face and stood up ready to pace. "Sirius, I don't understand how you can even think that! But it was not your fault."

Sirius looked away and scooped up a handful of snow and suddenly, with a wave of his wand the blob of snow was strawberry ice cream. Sirius took a casual lick and sat back with a grin, revelling in being the focus of Harry's confused gaze.

"So," He said slowly, "How is my situation different than yours?"

Harry opened his mouth and closed it again.

"Gotcha." Sirius smiled sweetly and conjured a wafer and took a small nibble before offering it to Harry along with a blob of ice cream.

Harry stared at him in disbelief for a moment before collapsing down beside him again, "You are an irritating man Sirius."

"I do try." Sirius replied coolly, although inside he was doing a victory dance. "It's hard to take, and it really bloody hurts when things go wrong, but you have to remember that if you did the best and bravest thing you could think of at the time, then you have nothing to be ashamed of."

Harry nodded hesitantly. "But I still feel guilty."

"Knowing you aren't guilty and feeling you aren't guilty are not the same thing. It'll come in time."

They sat in comfortable silence for a few minutes before Sirius struggled to his feet and extended a hand to help Harry up.

Harry refused the hand on the grounds that it was still coated in pink gooey ice cream and got to his feet himself.

Sirius threw an arm around him and proceeded to massage pink goo into Harry's shoulder anyway. Harry shook his head in amused disgust but leaned into Sirius for warmth and comfort.

"So now I have knocked just a little of that excess guilt out of you, what shall we do this afternoon?" Sirius said as he happily snuggled Harry closer as they walked back into the welcome warmth of the house.

Harry shrugged. "I don't know about you, but I am going to have a hot shower to get rid of some almost frozen gravy around my groin area."

Sirius wrinkled his nose, "That isn't a very exciting way to spend part of Christmas Eve. I'd offer to help you clean up if it was something exciting like chocolate sauce or cream, but as it is just gravy I think I'll pass thanks.

Harry rolled his eyes at Sirius' outrageousness, "Well how about if I get rid of the gravy and then you come by with a selection of foodstuffs until you find the one you most enjoy removing from my groin. Sound fair?"

Sirius exaggeratedly licked his lips and began deliberately rummaging around in the cool cupboard. As Harry kicked off his damp shoes Sirius held up a large carton of whipped cream and leered.

Harry grinned back and peeled off his damp jumper with an un-feigned shiver and dropped it over the back of a chair.

Sirius wriggled his eyebrows and pulled a banana out of the fruit bowl and made obscene gestures with it, Harry succeeded in ignoring him until he dipped it in the cream and slowly sucked it off with a loud wet popping sound. At that point Harry gave up on keeping a straight face and laughed helplessly, lying against the wall as he shook with mirth. It was either laugh or jump Sirius, so he picked the safer option.

Sirius loomed up in front of him, a look of mock-hurt on his face, "Hey, your legs aren't supposed to go weak until after I've had my wicked way with you."

"I'm afraid they went weak just at the thought!" Harry kept grinning inanely but began undoing the top buttons on his shirt.

Sirius resumed poking about in the cupboards and produced some olive oil, which he then applied to the banana with a truly lecherous look on his face.

Harry was by then almost crying with laughter and had to cling to the wall with one hand.

But when Sirius blew in his ear and slowly trickled olive oil down the top part of his bared chest he abruptly stopped laughing. In a moment Sirius would step away again and see just how his body was reacting to their messing about.

Throwing all cares away Harry made a grab for the bottle and managed to spout some down the collar of Sirius' shirt.

Sirius recoiled laughing, "Hey! Let me get the shirt off first you horny little bugger!"

Harry laughed too, although he was unsure how far Sirius would take this joke, if indeed it was a joke. "Get on with it then, or do you need the assistance of me and your friend the banana?"

Sirius dumped the abused banana back into the bowl, wrenched off his shirt and advanced on Harry with the cream.

The result was gloriously messy and very slippery.

Both dropped their respective containers and wrestled good-naturedly with each other, secretly enjoying the contact and unsure of how to move things along.

Finally Harry took control. "Sod this. Sirius, if you're interested I think this would be more fun in a bed with less clothes."

Sirius slid his fingers through a large blob of cream in the hollow of Harry's collarbone and then followed the motion with his tongue. "I think you're right. Especially as your floo access is in the kitchen."

Harry immediately pulled away and glanced at the fireplace.

Sirius straightened up with a slightly hurt look on his face. "Look, Harry, we can still pretend that this was just us being daft and messing about. There doesn't have to be anything else."

Harry picked up the cream and headed for the door, "I'm not ashamed of this Sirius, I'd just rather not have witnesses for you creaming me up."

Sirius didn't need further prompting and followed at speed, pausing only to grab the oil.

When they flopped together onto Harry's bed they gazed uncertainly at each other. "Are you sure about this?" Sirius asked as he ran gentle hands over Harry's exposed neck and upper chest. "I'm going to be here in the morning to love you again. I'll be opening gifts with you, eating with you, laughing with you for Christmas tomorrow. I'll be with you every day from now on if you let me. But if you don't want all that then I think we should probably stop now."

Harry arched into his touch and smiled with his eyes closed. "I am sure of this. You were always right for me Sirius. I was just too young before. I don't just love you for who you are. I love you for making me a better man when I'm with you."

Sirius flushed, torn between embarrassment and pleasure.

But then Harry stretched up and twined his fingers into Sirius' hair and dragged him down so he could lightly brush his lips against Sirius'.

They kissed for a while; gentle exploring kisses that gradually deepened into something more passionate.

Surprising himself with how much more he desperately wanted from this man Harry groaned against Sirius' mouth and twined his fingers into his hair trying to kiss him more deeply, and squirmed trying to get his body closer. It just wasn't enough.

Sirius broke their kiss to rain light, butterfly soft kisses over his temple, his hair, and his face. "Do you want…?" He faltered.

Harry was certain, "Yes. Everything with you."

Sirius soon found that even the simple act of Harry removing his glasses and leaving his startling eyes exposed could seduce. So peeling Harry's shirt from his shoulders and touching the sleek muscles and soft skin thrilled Sirius in a manner he couldn't recall ever experiencing before.

They struggled together with the annoyances of their now inconvenient trousers and shoes. Giggling at almost bumping noses as they wrenched off socks and underwear. Then they lay naked in the dim light, cradled in each other's arms, sharing deep sensual kisses, their hands learning the hard outlines of each other's bodies.

Suddenly, for Sirius the darkness of the December afternoon was a million miles away from being sufficiently bright to see enough of Harry. Touching him so intimately was wonderful, but not enough.

With a last kiss Sirius sat up, scooped up his wand and conjured and lit several candles to brighten the dim winter afternoon.

To his puzzlement Harry equally speedily yanked Sirius back down on top of him and extinguished them again.


"I just… Well, I'm not used to being looked at so much."


Harry squirmed, "I don't have a lot of experience with this kind of thing, and I never had anyone look at me like you just were."

Sirius grinned, "Get used to it. I plan to look at you like this a lot."

Harry smiled and allowed Sirius to sit up, light the candles again and look down at his naked body. He fought the urge to clamp his hands over his scars, to cross his legs and curl up to hide. This was Sirius. And he wanted this.

He shuddered as Sirius leaned forward and ran his tongue along the worst scar on his lower belly. "Still tastes like Harry." He pronounced with satisfaction as he licked down to his squirming thigh. "Yum."

He picked up the carton of cream with a grin. "Could taste like Harry with cream though. Which would be even better." With a long elegant finger he scooped a blob of cream out and smeared it over Harry's twitching stomach, along the line of the scar.

With every teasing flicker of Sirius' tongue over his scar Harry relaxed a little more.

Then Harry couldn't help but laugh at the absurdity as Sirius nibbled a cream-covered hipbone, and pronounced it: "Delicious."

But the helpless clenching and unclenching of Harry's fists and the harsh rasp of his breathing convinced him to move on. Sirius tired of the cream then and dropped it off the edge of the bed, uncaring of the mess he had made and then his tongue was making teasing flirtatious sorties that had Harry was gasping ever more needily.

"Want you Sirius." He growled.

Smiling, Sirius nodded, grabbed a pillow and used it to raise Harry's hips to a slightly more convenient angle, and knelt close between his thighs. With shaking hands he prepared Harry.

Sirius had been afraid of hurting him, but Harry showed him without words that his fears were groundless, arching up to meet his passion, body moving in perfect rhythm against his.

Harry revelled in the way his body fit that of his lover, the way they moved together in perfect synchronicity. He relished the taste of Sirius' tongue on his own, the warm press of his body, the firm touch of his hands guiding his hips, the tender power of the rhythm he set, and his own ability to match his every move.

They clung togther for a moment of bliss.

The moment stretched out for what seemed like forever.

Then Harry went limp beneath Sirius as satiation relaxed virtually every muscle in his body, and Sirius slumped down over him loving the feeling of warm muscle pillowing him. Harry was dazed, nearly unconscious from a surfeit of rapture. Sirius reluctantly and unsteadily lifted his weight away, then turned and pulled Harry into his arms, tenderly drawing the bedcovers over their trembling bodies.

Sighing, Harry burrowed into him, letting Sirius hold him and keep him warm, letting him rain gentle kisses over his temple and hair.

"I don't think I ever felt better than I do now." Sirius said quietly.

Harry just smiled and pressed a loving kiss against Sirius' shoulder.

Sirius held him tighter. Harry was the best thing in the world - Or certainly the best thing in the world to ever happen to him. Sirius letting go of Harry certainly wasn't about to happen anytime soon.

Then he heard the faint but unmistakeable sound of the floo being used.

He growled softly, but remained where he was. Not many people had floo access here, and none of Harry's friends were sufficiently ill mannered to go tramping through his house and barging into bedrooms without an invitation. So Sirius decided to let whoever it was arrive at the conclusion that Harry was not at home – so hopefully they would leave and Harry could get his breath back and hopefully they could do everything all over again – maybe with a reverse of positions.

Sirius' luck did not hold.

He discovered that his own friends were much nosier and more ill-mannered than Harry's and found himself staring at a stunned looking Remus as he stood framed in the open doorway.

"Damn." He muttered. "Harry, we didn't shut the door and this mangy old wolf has just wandered in."

Harry suddenly recovered his strength and sat bolt upright with a sheepish look on his face.

Remus returned the sheepish look before turning away to address someone out of sight in the hallway. "I don't think they particularly want to be disturbed, even for an undoubtedly excellent Christmas Eve dinner."

"Nonsense." The person replied bossily. "I told them seven and they agreed."

Harry and Sirius looked at each other aghast and pulled the bed covers up to their chins.

Hermione stood in the doorway with a look of abject shock on her face. Then a flicker of a smile began.

"Well," said she said, trying to wipe the grin off her face. "Congratulations on cheering yourselves up quite admirably. I can see you are in better moods now."

"I can see you two are going to have a rather Merry Christmas." Remus teased gently.

"Merry Kissmas and a Happy Nude Year boys!" Tonks wisecracked from the doorway.

Harry disappeared under the bedcovers to hide while Sirius just lay back and groaned.

"None of that now Harry." Tonks ribbed them. "You have dinner to eat, so don't consume Sirius."

Harry emerged from under the covers blushing furiously, "Gutter brains seem to run in your family." He told Sirius mildly.

Sirius shrugged, he didn't much care how much Tonks wanted to tease them, as long as nobody was upset or disgusted by their new relationship.

"Dinner is ready and waiting you know." Hermione reminded them shortly as she tugged Remus out of the door. "So get dressed. You'll be home soon enough and you can shag yourselves silly then. It'll be something to look forward to."

She smartly shut the door before they had time to argue.

Harry grumbled under his breath and then turned to look at Sirius with an appealing look on his face. "As much as I'd like to stay here with you, we did agree to attend this dinner party, and it is kind of a big friends and family holiday thing."

Sirius leaned in for a brief kiss, "Anticipation will make it all the sweeter. Besides we can make love any day. Christmas Eve celebrations are kind of a yearly thing."

Harry nodded and clambered out of bed. "We shouldn't really keep them waiting, and now Hermione mentioned dinner I am actually quite hungry."

Sirius agreed and they dressed quickly before descending the stairs hand in hand.

They entered the kitchen and found Ron stuffing a banana into his mouth.

Harry and Sirius exchanged amused looks.

"Oh Ron, honestly. We'll be sitting down to dinner in two minutes and you really shouldn't just help yourself to food in other people's houses." Hermione scolded.

Ron swallowed the last chunk of banana and appealed to Harry. "You don't mind do you mate?"

Sirius made an obscene gesture that only Harry saw.

Harry barely managed to control himself enough to shake his head before slumping against a madly grinning Sirius and shaking with suppressed laughter.

"Hey, why are you holding hands?" Ron asked in bewilderment as Hermione hauled him towards the fire.

Harry and Sirius were now clutching each other and laughing too hard to answer.

Remus smiled gladly and drew Tonks silently towards the fire as two of the unhappiest people he had ever known found happiness together.

Perhaps this year there really would be a happy Christmas.