Anapneo

Remus Lupin lay awake listening to the quiet sounds of his family's cottage at night: frogs calling to each other on the banks of the stream, wind lightly stirring the branches of the trees, the window chime that hung in his childrens bedroom window, and Tonks, who had just rolled onto her back, beginning to snore lightly. When they'd woken up from their first night together, Tonks had shyly apologized, "just in case my snoring woke you." It had, but Remus had dismissed her worries, claiming an immunity to being irritated by people's snoring. Remus smiled in the darkness as he remembered how he'd acquired this particular skill.

September, 1971

The prospect of being roommates with several normal wizards for seven long years was Remus's most consuming worry as he left for Hogwarts. He knew that concealing his lycanthropy would be no easy task, and he was faced with about sixty full moons between the sorting and his graduation.

The sorting and feast complete, the Gryffindors climbed the many staircases to their tower. As the door to their dormitory closed, the four first-year Gryffindor boys looked around their room and studied each other covertly. Sirius, who was confident or at the least projected confidence, was the first to claim a bed as his own. James followed quickly, leaving pudgy, anxious Peter and gangly, serious Remus who simply looked at each other for a moment and, by default, chose the beds nearest the place they were standing.

Remus felt thankful for the heavy curtains around his bed that would afford him a few hours of privacy each day. He'd been used to having his own bedroom at home, and it felt strange to know there were three others in such close proximity. "What would they do if they knew they were sharing a room with a werewolf?" he wondered yet again. Despite his worry, he sank into the comfortable bed, and was quickly asleep. He'd just begun to have a pleasant dream when the most horrible sound he'd ever heard jolted him wide awake.

The sound was something between a gargle, a growl, and a wheeze. He couldn't think of any Magical Creature that was reported to make a sound like that. Now, the curtains he'd been so thankful for earlier, seemed an impassible barrier. He simply couldn't bring himself to open them and face whatever bizarre creature was prowling their dorm room. He wasn't sure of his ability with any defensive spells, since his parents had been strict about making him wait until he was properly educated to practice magic.

The noise stopped as suddenly as it had started. Remus supposed the creature had moved on to another room, perhaps to find someone who would open their bed curtains. He'd just managed to relax again and was nearly asleep when the horrible gurgling resumed. The pattern continued on and off all night.

The next morning, he dragged himself out of bed, unsure of how he'd survive the day's classes. He briefly noted that Sirius and James looked as tired as he felt, but Peter however, looked fine. Perhaps he was a heavy sleeper, and had been lucky enough to sleep through the noise. Neither James nor Sirius mentioned anything about not sleeping, so Remus was silent. He didn't intend to share that he'd been kept awake all night but had been too frightened to do anything about it!

The first day was exciting, but exhausting; when Remus was finally able to climb into his bed, draw the curtains and collapse, he had barely enough energy to wish that it would be a quiet night. When the noise began again, he was not the only one to howl in misery. If he was not mistaken, that sounded like Sirius screaming. Taking a deep breath, he poked his head out of his curtains to see both James and Sirius looking out. Peter's curtains, though, were still drawn shut.

"What the bloody hell is that noise?" yelled Sirius. As soon as he'd yelled, the sound stopped. The three boys started to check the room, but found no evidence of a creature. The noise began again, and they all realized that it was coming from Peter's bed. "Whatever it is, it's in there with Peter!" Wand clenched firmly in his right hand, Sirius walked carefully to Peter's bed and used the other hand to open the curtain. They saw no carnivorous Magical Creature; all that was there was Peter, now flat on his back, mouth wide open, and the source of the horrible noise was abundantly clear. "All of that was snoring?" Sirius moaned. "We've got seven years of this! There must be something we can do!"

"My mum used a Silencing Charm on an old clock when she didn't want it to chime loudly," offered James. "Maybe we could charm his curtains to keep the sound in." Remus and Sirius looked at James expectantly. James squinted, took aim, and jabbed his wand while saying Silencio. Nothing happened.

"Hmm," pondered Sirius, "maybe it's one of those swish and flick charms we practiced in Flitwick's class." He proceeded to elegantly swirl his wand before shouting Silencio, to no effect.

"Nah, too much wrist there mate. You looked like that poncey Lockhart git," teased James.

For a moment, Remus thought Sirius was offended, but then he started to laugh. "Fine," he chuckled, "your turn Lupin." Closing his eyes first to envision just how Professor Flitwick had done it, he carefully swished, precisely flicked, and firmly and clearly said, "Silencio." And the noise stopped. Both boys congratulated Remus and alternated between patting his back and slugging his arm. Remus felt aglow with pride that he'd been able to do what the other two boys had not. They were all climbing back into their beds, when Peter stirred, and the snoring started again.

Sighing, Remus said, "Maybe if we all do it at the same time, it will be powerful enough to work." They all took aim, swished, flicked, and shouted Silencio! With a whoosh and a bright flash, Peter's curtains ignited.

The reactions of the three boys was typical of the pattern they'd follow for the next three years. Remus, the scholar, paused thoughtfully, trying to think of the best solution. James, with the reflexes that would serve him well as a Auror, started to shoot off every spell he could think of. Peter slept on, oblivious. Sirius, who would soon be one of Gryffindor's best Beaters, laughed and then jumped into action, ordering the others to, "forget magic! Just pull the curtains down before we roast Peter in his bed!"

They used their hands and feet to beat out the flames. Five minutes later, covered in soot and licking burnt fingers, they surveyed the damage as Peter, incredibly, rolled back over and resumed snoring. Glancing at each other, they all started to snicker. All three had completely singed off their eyebrows. "Right then," said Remus. "Hospital wing, I suppose."

Madam Pomfrey was none too happy to be woken up at 4 am., but mended their burns all the same. "Dueling, I suppose," she huffed.

"Just trying a silencing charm to try to get some sleep," Sirius grumbled.

"Ah, is Pettigrew a snorer?" The boys nodded glumly, and Remus briefly explained how they'd tried to quiet him. "Well, given your track record, I'm not sure I should teach you the proper spell to stop his snoring." Sirius looked at Madam Pomfrey with puppy dog eyes and a sincere looking smile. "Fine," she said, and proceeded to teach them the Anapneo Charm, which would clear Peter's airway.

As soon as they opened the door of their dormitory, the sounds of Peter's snoring assaulted them. Both James and Sirius looked at Remus and shrugged, apparently not wanting to be the first one to try out the new charm. Swish, flick, Anapneo, commanded Remus. Peter remained on his back, mouth open wide, but suddenly, and blessedly, silent.

"Merlin's balls," muttered Sirius, "it worked!" They all went back to bed, Remus making a mental note to add the phrase 'Merlin's balls' to his vocabulary.

Morning came all too quickly, but at least they knew that they'd be able to sleep that night. Peter was the last to wake up. "Umm, what happened to my curtains? And your eyebrows?"

As a student at Hogwarts, Remus had considered himself lucky beyond measure that his roommates had stuck by him when they'd discovered his lycanthropy. Instead of seeking distance from him, they'd become best friends – brothers – something he'd surely not expected when he'd left his parents on Platform 9 ¾. He'd also never expected what he had now: a beautiful wife who loved him unconditionally; two healthy, normal children whom he adored; in short, a normal life. He truly didn't mind being woken up in the middle of the night these days. Sometimes in his dreams he was alone again. Being woken up by his children when they were crying after a bad dream or by Tonks's snoring simply gave him another opportunity to be grateful for what he had. Looking fondly at Tonks, Remus gently stroked her cheek and whispered Anapneo.