Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.
AN: I do not know what made me write it, but I was reading all this love advice on the Internet when I wanted to write this. So – ladies and gentlemen, unless you know it's true, love will lie in your face and you'll be gullible enough to believe it. Love lies often. Hehe. Happy Valentines Day, everybody!
"She was in tears by the end of the night." Sirius says casually, playing with a strand of his hair on the common room couch. Remus turns his wince into a blink.
"How many more people are you going to dump before you actually take a relationship seriously, Padfoot?" James asks. Sirius shrugs.
"I thought you told us last week that you were practically in love with her." Remus observes carefully.
Why does he even mind that Sirius lies like an old sailor? Because I love him.
"Yeah, well, love lies." He says carelessly.
"And she was gullible enough to believe it?"
"Yes," Sirius says defensively. "Besides, she wasn't really meant for me."
"Since when do you care when somebody is meant for you and when they're not?" James asks skeptically, leaning onto the armchair.
"Er – always."
Remus sighs, giving a skeptical 'tut' before standing up. "Sirius, you know nothing about love."
"Oh yeah?" He retorts. "Well, I know more than you do."
Remus knows that Sirius is true – he knows absolutely nothing about girls or love or anything alike, but mostly because he's never stopped to learn such a thing. O.W.L.s or N.E.W.T.s were always in the way, or learning about other subjects – studying was a priority!
He raises an eyebrow. "Perhaps. But love lies." Remus says slyly, and disappears up the stairs. He can hear Sirius behind him.
"That was lame."
Remus' face flushes even though nobody can see him.
"I was right, you know." Sirius whispers huskily in an undertone the next morning at breakfast, leaning down to Remus. He holds up the pitcher to block his face from view.
"Right about what, exactly?"
Sirius moves the pitcher, "That you're a hopeless romantic." He says helplessly.
Remus looks at Sirius for a moment. "Perhaps."
"Don't you want to be taught?"
Remus looks at Sirius in the same peculiar way he just did, his fork halfway up to his mouth. He stops. "Taught what?"
"Romance." He says bluntly, looking at Remus smugly.
Remus drops his toast. He wasn't expecting that – nor did he have any time to really think about what he should be expecting. The normal Remus would point down refuse and seem insulted, but he's not. He can feel his face getting hotter.
"Fine." He says in a deadly quiet voice.
Sirius smiles eagerly. Remus is already regretting his decision.
"So," Sirius says smoothly. "What do you know?"
Remus is sitting on his bed, feeling very awkward in his position – having Sirius teaching him something incredibly useless to him. This is very unlike him to agree to this – but something is stopping him from not doing it.
"Er…" He says uncomfortably. "I'm not sure how to answer that question."
Sirius rolls his eyes and moves forward. "Did you ever kiss someone before?"
Remus' face is reddening. He sinks down onto the mattress. "Uh – no."
"You are a real beginner, you know that?" Sirius says fondly. "But the more fun for me."
Remus winces. "Oh no." He mutters, but Sirius can't hear him.
"Well, there are six steps."
Remus is wonderful at remembering things, but not these sort of things. He can remember that the only way to kill a werewolf is to shoot him with a silver bullet, he can remember that goblin rebellions began way earlier than 1200 B.C., and he can even remember not to eat the bacon off of the platter on Sunday breakfasts because Sirius has probably spit on it to claim it his own and ward off other bacon-eaters. But he cannot remember this no matter how hard he tries, but he nods anyway.
"And the first one is always look them in the eye for a long time and then move closer. And smile."
"Er–" Remus says. Why did he agree to this? Because I'm in love with him.
"That step," Sirius says, raising his voice slightly to overwrite Remus. "Is what I call 'Getting Cleared for Takeoff'. Try it!" He encourages eagerly, and Remus freezes. This wasn't part of the bargain.
"No, really, it's nothing physical in step one!" Sirius says playfully. "Oh, c'mon Remus, what – are you afraid?"
Remus doesn't want to stand up and look in Sirius eyes for a long time. He doesn't want to move closer to him and then wait. No. No. No, he really doesn't want to.
"Do you want me to do it to you?" He warns dangerously.
Remus stands still.
"Fine, I will," Sirius walks over quickly, Remus backing up onto the mattress, Sirius' eyes somewhat boring into his. He blinks. Sirius laughs deeply.
"Oh my god, Moony, you never blink when somebody looks at you like this!"
Remus doesn't want to remember not to blink. He needs to blink, but Sirius won't care.
"Sirius, this is–"
"Step two," Sirius says. "Is what I call the 'Final Instrument Check'. Keep on looking them in the eye, and stop smiling, and then touch their face or their neck."
Remus hopes Sirius is not about to say 'try it!' because this is getting across the boundaries of friendship. But Sirius doesn't say anything and Remus feels rather denied.
"Step three is to relax yourself and close your eyes. 'Down the Runway' is what I call it, or 'the point of no return."
Remus doesn't want to name step three 'the point of no return'. This doesn't sound like kissing anymore, this sounds like blasting a rocket into space.
"By step four, you need to swallow your spit and have a tension free jaw. Then you can tilt your head and suck in your breath and part your mouth," Sirius instructs. Remus has already forgotten how many steps there really should be. "That's called 'Gaining Momentum."
"How many more steps are there?"
Sirius ignores him. "Step five is 'we have liftoff!'. Now is the time to enjoy yourself and not make anything to wet. And do not make any sudden movements or jerk away. Do not make it too long or too short. Savor savor savor!"
Remus doesn't feel he'll have to worry about making anything too long, but the rest is a little confusing for him.
"Lastly," Remus gulps. "Is 'Cruising Altitude. When you pull away, keep it soft and close your lips. Don't make any large breaths or rasping gasps, and do not look confused or bewildered. Smile. Make eye contact. Savor savor savor!!" He eggs on eagerly, waving his hands.
"This is weird." Remus comments quietly from the bed. He's lost his appetite. He doesn't think he'll ever kiss someone ever.
"Well, now that you know kissing, maybe to the rest–"
"No!" Remus pleads, his feet slipping off of the bed, but Sirius ignores him.
"We need to go over the signs," He reasons logically.
"Signs?" He asks hopelessly.
"Yes. To tell if someone likes you."
Remus is done and he doesn't want to know if someone likes him. Ever.
"There are ten obvious signs," Sirius says wisely. "The Eyebrow Lift – when somebody raises their eyebrows briefly at you. Gaining your attention with rather foolish or exaggerated movements or motions. The Lips Parting slightly, their nostrils and face widening slightly, they stroke their face or touch their clothing. They fiddle with their hair – or, the biggest sign – they lean down and adjust their sock."
Half of the information Remus has just heard flew over his head, his ears deaf and his senses blind. He blinks. Sirius is smiling excitedly over his head.
"You'll get it soon, Moony, really."
Remus feels sick to his stomach. He never asked for this, everything he just learned is useless information he could have used doing his transfiguration homework. Why did he stop and do this?
"Er, I do have something to do." He says lamely, and walks away hastily.
Because I'm in love with my best friend.
He winces at this, his face flushing. When will he use this information – the Sock Adjustment or the Eyebrow Lift. Useless! It's all useless to Remus.
The only thing that is bothering him is that what Sirius had said was right: Love lies. And Remus is being gullible.
"Wasn't that fun, yesterday, Remus?" Sirius asks airily the next morning. Remus shoots him a dark look.
"I don't know what you're talking about."
"You know, c'mon, me teaching you about love, kissing, and signs."
"Love lies and kissing sucks." Remus says shortly.
"What bit you this morning?" Sirius asks rudely. "Well, the signs–"
"Signs can be misleading." Remus says quickly.
"Perhaps," He responds. "But some are down-right in front of your face."
Sirius looks at him rather peculiarly, almost expectantly, and Remus blushes.
"Stop it," He says. "Why are you looking at me like that?"
"I'm not," He says in a bitter voice, and gets up from the table.
"I bet you still suck at kissing." Sirius hisses to Remus in the empty common room later that day. Remus sighs.
"I know I do." Sirius sighs.
Remus looks at him – his nostrils flaring. That usually means he's angry or frustrated, Remus tries to ignore it. He leans forward very obviously and adjusts his –
"Wait!" Remus shouts, slamming his book shut and his eyes widening. "Sirius, you just–"
"Straightened my sock," Sirius finishes for him. "Took you some time to catch on." He mutters irritably.
"Why didn't you just–"
"Remus, why do you think I taught you about signs?" He says, his eyes turning desperate. Remus crumbles; he's never seen Sirius look so helpless.
All of a sudden, Remus is slammed back first onto the couch under Sirius. He squeaks. Sirius looks at him expectantly.
"Well?" He asks. "Aren't you going to do something?"
Remus' mind flutters back to the six steps, his mind spinning. He leans in. Sirius closes the gap, his hands closing around his face. His tongue is in his mouth, they didn't discuss this part… It's amazing how fast those steps really pass –
"Wow," Sirius gasps finally. "It's amazing how fast you learn."