Title: Alive
Author: LupinLovesTonks
Rated: M for implied nudity and a sexual situation.
Disclaimer: HP & all others are trademarks of JK Rowling. No profit is made from the use of these trademarked entities. No animals were harmed in the typing of this fic. Void where prohibited, see store for complete rules and details. Any similarities to actual events are strictly a coincidence.


Chapter Three


She looked across the table at him. He gave her a faint smile of encouragement before getting caught up into a story Mundungus was telling him. If it was any consolation to Tonks, it did seem as if Remus preferred to be talking to her instead of the man sitting beside him. Occasionally Remus would glance over at her and give that small smile that would make her heart double in beats for a moment.

She wasn't sure, but she had the inkling of an idea that she should join Remus in his room once all the children were in bed asleep. Perhaps he would find some way to candidly ask her to do so after the meeting. Almost everyone had arrived, they were merely waiting for Dumbledore to arrive so that the meeting could get started.

Everyone was chattering about different things. Charlie had even attempted to strike up a conversation with Tonks. But, he had discovered her to be rather distracted by her own thoughts to keep insisting. The room had suddenly fell silent as Dumbledore arrived in the doorway.

That is, silent except for Mundungus' somewhat loud comment of, "So Remus, the twins told meh ya got in with Tonks last night. Said their sister and Hermione barged in on it this morning." He had barked with laughter and patted Remus on the back.

Remus turned pale, Tonks could feel the blood drain from her own face as every eye in the room looked at Remus then at her. Tonks candidly cast a glance around the table. Every face looked horrified, except for Molly and Arthur's. The expression on some of the faces turned to amusement while others turned into twisted expressions of disgust.

Luckily, Dumbledore broke the silence. "As fascinating as it would be to continue the looks and the conversation of inter-Order affairs, I think it is time we settled into important matters of business."

888

Fortunately, nothing more had been said about Mundungus' proclamation. When Remus had given his reports, a few faces had looked amused and even, somewhat confused at him. However, when Tonks had stood to give her reports, every person that had looked at her had seemed to be fighting the urge to laugh at her.

Of course, that may have all only been in her head. She would ask Remus later for confirmation. Besides, not that many people could have been concerned about what her and Remus were doing in his bedroom that morning. Tonks felt that perhaps, maybe, she was just imagining all the looks.

After the meeting, Remus had quickly dismissed himself and fled up the stairs to his room. Tonks had been left alone without anywhere to run for cover. As her luck would have it, Charlie was the first to approach her. He had a crude half smile on his face, so she knew what was coming.

"So," he started. Go ahead, ask, Tonks thought. "You and Remus?" Tonks pursed her lips and glared at her old classmate. "Oh come on, Tonks, I was in the room when Ginny and Hermione were telling the twins. I know all the naughty details."

"Why is it any of your business?" Tonks snapped.

Charlie held his hands up in defense. "I am just wanting to know why and how? I mean, geesh, Tonks. He's almost old enough to be your father. It's mind boggling just to thing that someone his age is still able to get it u--"

"Charlie," Tonks sighed. "Your parents still get it on and they are older than Remus."

At that, Charlie cringed as if in a vast amount of pain. "Okay, you win. But I did not need the mental image of my parents in my head."

Charlie meandered away shortly thereafter. The Order members slowly dwindled after a few hours. At last, the children began to go away up the stairs. Eventually, Tonks was the only one still downstairs. It was becoming painstakingly obvious that Remus was not going to show his face outside of his room.

Tonks did the only thing she could do, she went up to his room. As she reached his door and could hear his pacing, an overwhelming feeling of awkwardness washed over her. Perhaps, then, it had not been a good idea to go up and talk to him about what was going on. Maybe he was embarrassed about the way it had been blurted out amongst the meeting in such a ghastly manner.

Then again, it wasn't their fault Mundungus didn't seem to notice a thin line and when it was not the time to cross it.

Tonks lifted her hand and lightly knocked on Remus' door. Instantly the pacing stopped, this was followed by long strides of heavy feet.

"I told you Charlie," Remus voice growled. "Lay off!" The door was snatched open. Remus jumped slightly in surprise, Tonks had also leapt back in surprise at the force of his tone. She had also prompt tripped over her own feet in the process and crashed to the floor. The look of fury instantly left Remus' expression and he knelt down to her level.

"I apologize," he murmured, gently taking her hand. "I thought you were Charlie coming back for a fifth round." He stood, pulling Tonks up easily as he did so.

Raising an eyebrow, Tonks asked, "Fifth round?"

Remus sighed heavily and ran his fingers roughly through his hair. "It's best not to ask." He propped against his doorframe. "Though I think it rather rude for others to listen in on private conversations," Remus said a little loudly, instantly there was the sound of a door quickly shutting. "I think it would prove best to stand out here and talk for right now."

"Charlie asked me about us too," Tonks commented. She was actually rather uncertain as to what were the proper questions to ask at that moment. "You don't think everyone is really that fixated about it do you? Or is it just in my head?" There, that would be the best way to sum it up.

Remus shook his head and whispered a faint "no". He sighed heavily and gazed up at the ceiling. "I think perhaps they are seeing it as a mild distraction from the normal feeling of impending doom. And the fact that it was me and it was you that only added to the formula." He looked down at her. "This is awkward."

Tonks nodded in agreement. "Yeah, a little." Though Tonks didn't want to admit it, it was more than awkward it was out right uncomfortable and unnerving and many more adjectives that she couldn't quiet place. A part of her knew that is was because it was Remus that made it that way.

A one nighter was not supposed to leave her feeling as complete and whole as this one had. It was a world of difference from the usual content but unfulfilled feelings that had come from the few she had experienced in her past. It felt as if she had taken a book of her life, closed it, put it on the shelf, and taken out a blank book to start writing a new book.

"Well, Remus we could just have a kiss and see if there's any sort of feeling in it and… if there's not, then we take this no further," Tonks suggested.

Even before Remus' hand had gently stroked her face, Tonks knew there would be feelings in it. The moment their lips touched she felt the warmth spread through her entire being. She wasn't sure how long the kiss had lasted, just that the simple slightly chaste kiss had made her feel things she had never felt prior to the night before.

The two of them gazed at each other a long moment. There was a soft warmth to Remus' eyes as they took in her features.

"Anything?" Tonks whispered, the first one of the two to be able to form any sort of thoughts.

"None," Remus said quietly. "You?"

"Absolutely nothing," Tonks replied quietly. She hoped that a look of disappointment had not crossed her features when he had replied. For a moment she thought perhaps she had seen one in Remus' eyes when she had given her reply but, what was said had been said. "I guess this is settled then. There's no 'us'. It goes no further than two friends trying to comfort each other over a very emotional loss."

Remus nodded stiffly. "It is settled."

The two of them shook hands and plastered on forced smiles and Remus went back into his room. Tonks heard his weight thud against the door. Tonks retreated to her own room, closing the door behind her. She leaned against the door and gazed at her bed.

The blankets were still disheveled from where the two of them had retreated to it after the library had out-lived it's usefulness. He had retreated to his room afterwards and she had tossed and turned for the better part of half an hour before running to Remus' room for more.

She felt her blood drain from her face and her eyes began to sting. For some reason, her body felt dead, but her spirit felt more alive than it ever had. For one night she had known what it felt like to be complete, her soul was rejuvenated by it. Her soul was still beaming with energy from it, while her body was quickly coming to terms with the fact…

She had just thrown away any chance of feeling that way again.