Okay, one challenge I got was a post-Azkaban Remus fic, preferably around the Full Moon, from Phanael, so hopefully this'll fit into that category, although it does go before and after. This also fits in to a "Five things" challenge going around a few sites. I may write another one for this challenge after the month or something, since I'm not entirely satisfied.
The Five Most Important Transformations of Remus Lupin's Life.
The most important, for most Werewolves, and probably the only one shared by them all, was the first. This transformation set the scene for all the future ones; it was the first time you were in your wolf skin, you finally got to see how those close to you - friends, family, Remus' parents - truly felt and reacted to your curse. This was the worst, especially when you were a terrified four year old locked in your basement, feeling the pain overwhelm you, your limbs rend and tear and form new ones. The terror of having no idea what was happening beyond that this was a Bad Thing, that your parents didn't love you anymore because of this.
When Remus had found out his friends had planned to become Animagi for him, he hadn't believed they'd do it. When they passed their first unsuccessful year, then their second, he'd given up the little hope he'd carried. So when, on the first transformation he was forced to endure on his birthday - his sixteenth, to make things even worse - a dog a stag and a rat poked into his room and ran with him that moon, Remus had been overjoyed. He finally had friends who would be there for him throughout it all, friends who'd even gone so far as to risk everything - breaking the law, the danger to their lives - just to be there for him on the moons. He nipped a shaggy black ankle, yelped in laughter as the dog turned on him and began snapping back playfully and had the best birthday of his life.
The first one along again.
Halloween 1981 came two days before the full moon, and Remus was still reeling in shock and anger when the Wolf took over. He knew nothing that night except a deep pain and an unabating loneliness as Moony cried out for Padfoot, for his Mate, and for his betrayal. When he awoke the next morning, he found that four days had passed and Moony had tore him up worse than any other moon. The disorienting terror of having no idea what was going on had returned, as well as the recognition that all his loved ones were gone to him. It could have been his first moon again, except that this time Remus knew the cause, and his lover rotting in Azkaban tore his soul apart worse than Moony ever could.
The first moon with the Animagus at his side was a blur, all he truly recognised was that he had a few dog-induced bites and Harry was crying about his dad and Sirius and Buckbeak being free and Peter being free as well and he slept. The second full moon with Sirius after his escape - the true moon with him by his side - was much different. Remus had the Wolfsbane, and Sirius curled by his side in front of the fire the whole night in a furry parody of the embrace they'd shared a few hours before, in the flesh. All of him, in the flesh again.
The last moon Remus ever faced, truly faced, was his first without Sirius. The Animagus was gone and, although he had a few more days to cope, it was a little more serious this time. His lover, who he'd only just really found again, was gone. Moony, under control of the Wolfsbane, did not tear his body apart this time, but it prowled the edges of his subconscious, howling in anguish and tearing at his mind. Remus let himself go to the agony and howled the night away.