A/N: It's probably a bit cliché, but it is fluffy and full of mentions of Sirius's pretty hair and James's illogical logic. The McGonagall/Peter/toaster allusions are Shoebox-inspired. I take no credit for McGonagall's exasperation with Peter and his love of toast.
Disclaimer: Do I seem like a British millionaire or two fantastic fan fiction writers (considering that I am neither British nor am I two people)? I don't own Harry Potter or SBP.
"Er, Prongs?" Sirius started uncomfortably, shifting his weight from foot to foot as he looked down at James nervously. His messy-haired friend was sprawled on his bed, reading an issue of Quidditch Weekly.
"Yes?" James asked, not looking up from his article.
"I have something to tell you," Sirius said, chewing on his bottom lip and silently cursing himself for being so cowardly. Where was that Gryffindor courage when you needed it?
"Go ahead." James moved his hand in a short wave, motioning for Sirius to carry on. If Sirius hadn't been so painfully anxious, he would have complained about James's lack of compassion and interest. Seeing as he was painfully anxious, he played with a loose thread on the sleeve of his robes and attempted to muster up the courage he needed.
"Well, you see…" Sirius stared off at the spot above James's head, suddenly finding the poster-covered wall very interesting. "There's this thing, and…" He winced, rubbing his neck. "I sort of…you know, I mean…well…it's… For Merlin's sake, I'm gay!" he said finally, breathing out a rush of air.
"Of course," James replied, still staring at the magazine. It wasn't a sarcastic "of course", or even a disbelieving "of course". It was an as-if-that-wasn't-the-most-obvious-fact-ever "of course". Of course, that confused Sirius.
"'Of course'? Just 'of course'? I've been hiding out in the bloody metaphorical closet for months and all you have to say is 'of course'?" Sirius sputtered.
"Mm-hm." James flipped to a new page and started reading an interview with the Cannons' new chaser, continuing to ignore Sirius.
"'Mm-hm'?" Sirius echoed. Why wasn't James reacting? He was ruining Sirius's coming out! His confession moment! His breaking out of the closet! Sirius wanted acceptance, attention, vows to beat up anyone that turned against him. Even yelling would be better than this! Out of the many things that Sirius Black did not take well, ignorance was at the top. He hated to be ignored.
"'Mm-hm'? 'Mm-hm'? 'MM-HM'?" Sirius continued to repeat.
"Uh-huh," James clarified with a distracted nod.
"'Uh-huh'? 'Uh-huh'? 'Uh-huh'? 'UH—"
"What do you want?" James demanded exasperatedly, finally looking up from his magazine. "I'm READING Quidditch Weekly. READING! I don't read things! It's practically sacrilege! Quidditch Weekly was made for people to look at the pictures! I'm ruining that for the woman of my dreams, Sirius, because she says that being able to read is an important skill in life, and even first-years can do it. So, please SHUT UP!"
"I just told you that I'm a BLOODY FLAMING POOFTER and you want to read?" Sirius said in disbelief. "You shame me, James Potter. SHAME ME!"
Sirius threw his hands into the air and began to pace. Sirius, being the paciest of all pacers, managed to do this exceedingly well while James stared on in astonishment.
"It's not like you were telling me something important," James insisted, crossing his arms and pouting. Sirius was the one that had interrupted him. If anyone should be pacing, it was James!
"You think that telling you that I'm A SHIRT-LIFTER isn't IMPORTANT?" Sirius yelled. "IT TOOK ME A MONTHTO COME UP WITH THE COURAGE TO TELL YOU, YOU PRAT!"
"Not when I've known for years! It's like suddenly deciding to tell me that the moon is made of evil cheese, when we all perfectly well know it is," James said, his voice stressed as he wondered why Sirius was so angry.
"The moon isn't made of evil cheese, it's made of evil rocks of doom—" Sirius started to correct, but then stopped. "Wait, WHAT?" He ceased pacing and leaned over onto James's bed, his kohled eyes wide. "You KNEW?"
"Of course I did!" James said matter-of-factly. "Now, can I read?"
"How did you KNOW?" Sirius demanded, disregarding James's attempt to resume reading. "I didn't tell you!"
"So? It was obvious! It's one of those unspoken things that you just know about. Like never to tease Remus with chocolate before a full moon of you value your fingers, not to touch any of your makeup unless said makeup-toucher wants to spend the rest of the week with lipstick in unpleasant places, McGonagall would happily shove Peter in a toaster oven if she had the chance, and Lily Evans is madly in love with me!"
"I guess that three out of four isn't bad," Sirius mumbled, rolling his eyes and James's last statement. "But, still, this whole 'Sirius is a giant poofter' thing is not an unspoken thing! It's a thing that you weren't supposed to know about until I told you!"
"Er, want to try again?" James suggested weakly. "I'll pretend to be surprised, I promise."
"Never mind," Sirius sighed, plopping down on James's bed. He turned on his side and propped his chin up on the palm of his hand, staring intently at his friend. "How did you know, anyways?"
"Your hair," James answered simply.
"My hair?" Sirius fingered a silky black lock.
"Yeah," James shrugged. "You have the best bloody hair in the school—next to Evans, of course. The universe isn't cruel enough to make straight men fight against your hair to get dates. I mean, look at my head. I'd never get a girl if you weren't gay."
"While that is true," Sirius agreed, "that is some strange, strange logic, mate."
"I have to get by somehow."
"So, the first day of first year you looked at me and said, 'Look at his hair! It's so pretty! He must be a total poofter! Why don't I have a conversation with him before I met the Lady Prongs of my dreams, who will hate every fiber of my being, but it won't matter because I am too bloody persistent to the point of patheticness?'"
James chewed on his bottom lip, thinking, before responding. "No, I said, 'Ohhh, shiny!' because I saw a Muggle coin rolling on the floor, and then chased it through the train to your compartment. I didn't realize that your hair was the best in the school when I figured out in third year that mine was beyond hope."
"So when we were thirteen you realized that I was gay?" Sirius asked.
"Not exactly. There were other signs, you know."
"Pray tell," Sirius pressed, wanting to know what had led James to realize that his best mate was a poof.
"Well, you do wear makeup," James pointed out.
"It's the seventies, Prongs," Sirius said, shaking his head at James's utter lack of reason. "You wear makeup, Remus wears makeup, Peter wears makeup, and even Snivelly wears makeup! Or," he added as an afterthought, "it could be black grease."
"Yes, but we are normal about it—except Snivellus, who will never be considered normal—whereas you aren't."
"How am I not normal?"
"How long did you spend putting on eyeliner today?" James challenged, raising an eyebrow.
"Ten minutes," Sirius answered stubbornly.
"Psssh. Forget about it. Try higher."
"It took you thirty-three bloody minutes to perfect your eyeliner this morning! Thirty-three! That is obsessive, Padfoot. Overly-obsessive."
"Wanting to look good is not something that automatically means a bloke is gay…although most of us gay blokes look better than you straight blokes."
"Pads, there is glitter in your hair," James stressed.
"Have you missed the glam rock movement of Hogwarts?" Sirius asked, rolling his eyes. "Everyone with good hair does glitter, Prongs."
"Every bird does."
"Kingsley's head is glittery," Sirius said stubbornly.
"Shaklebolt is bald, Pads. And his head is shiny, not sparkly."
"So?" Sirius huffed. "Give me another reason that made you suspect that I had turned on birds. A good one."
"You don't think that Lily is the most gorgeous female in the history of forever," James said seriously. "She's the best-looking bird in Gryffindor—no, Hogwarts. Every straight man thinks that she is beautiful. You don't."
"I think she's pretty," Sirius said defensively. "You know, in that annoying, red-headed, 'I'm-Going-To-Tell-McGonagall', know-it-all sort of way."
"But you don't think that she is Merlin's gift to wizardkind."
"Who would? The world would be a better place if someone regularly cast a silencing charm on Evans."
"But then we wouldn't be able to hear her beautiful, angry, screaming voice!" James yelped, honestly shocked.
"Exactly the point," Sirius said, rolling his eyes. "Just because I think that everyone would be better off if Evans fell into a never-ending ditch does not automatically mean that I'm gay. Besides, Moony doesn't like Evans either. Well, he does as an actual person, for some strange reason I can't comprehend, but not as a snogging prospect."
James simply raised one eyebrow and went on. "You agreed with Moony when he said that Playwizard magazine is vulgar."
"It is," Sirius said adamantly.
"No, you don't think it is. You just don't want to look at the women inside of it, and you are a pushover puppy that loves to make Moony happy, so you agreed. If it was Playwitch, then you would definitely have a harder time keeping a straight face as you lied."
"Fine, so I'd rather ogle blokes than birds. Fine, fine. That still isn't good enough."
"You need more in the fact that you prefer naked blokes over naked birds?"
"Yes," Sirius said unwaveringly.
"So, do you want to know the number one reason why it is painfully and unavoidably obvious that you are a bloody flaming poofter?" James challenged.
"Yes, that would be nice."
"You," James paused for dramatic effect, "are madly, completely, and abso-bloody-lutely in total, crazy, and irreversible love with one Remus Lupin."
"I'm-I'm," Sirius sputtered, his eyes wide. "Y-you…and…n-no…it...uhhhh…er…um…eck…and… How the hell did you know?"
"I, having fabulous intuitive such-and-such and a natural disposition to delve into the deepest corners of my fellow Marauders' minds, used my brilliancy to discover that you, my dear Padfoot, have a rather big thing for Moony."
Sirius shot James a disbelieving look, raising one eyebrow in that way that only Sirius Black could. Sighing, James relented, "I needed to copy notes from that Transfiguration class I slept through and couldn't find Moony's notebook, so I borrowed yours. In the margins you wrote, 'I am madly, completely, and abso-bloodly-lutely in total, crazy, irreversible love with one Remus Lupin.'" James shrugged. "That was a pretty good indicator."
"What happened to, 'Do not touch Padfoot's stuff unless you want lipstick in unpleasant places?'" Sirius demanded.
"That only qualifies for your makeup," James said smartly. "Everything else is free game."
"You are evil."
"If I wasn't, I wouldn't be me."
"True, true," Sirius reluctantly agreed. "Still, doesn't that somehow break the whole 'respect people's privacy' thing that Moony was talking about?"
"If you want privacy, then write your love confessions in your journal, you bloody ponce," James said, rolling his eyes. "Your Transfiguration notebook is hardly the place."
"Thank you for your wonderful romantic advice, Mr. I-Can't-Get-The-Bird-That-I've-Been-Chasing-After-For-The-Past-Three-Years," Sirius said sarcastically.
"Two years and seven months," James sniffed. "And she's coming around."
"Mm-hm," Sirius hummed disbelievingly. "Of course, mate."
"She is!" James insisted. "And stop trying to change the subject!"
"Me? Change the subject that is none of your business whatsoever? Never!" Sirius said in a mock hurt voice, throwing his hand over his heart.
"Shut it," James pouted. "You're just jealous that I have more of a chance with Lily than you do with Remus."
"McGonagall and Peter have a better chance than you and Evans," Sirius snorted. "And Remus and I happen to have a better chance than they do, considering that Minnie still wants to shove Peter in that toaster, and she wouldn't cross the student/teacher lines for me."
"You're gay," James said bluntly.
"No man, gay or straight, is able to escape the spell of Minnie McGonagall," Sirius said gravely.
James finally shrugged. "Okay, that's true. But at least McGonagall fancies blokes."
"Who says that Remus doesn't?" Sirius asked defiantly.
"The evidence," James said matter-of-factly, "is against it."
"Your extremely pointless, unsubstantial evidence?" Sirius challenged.
"It is not pointless and unsub…when did you learn that word?"
"Moony," Sirius said smugly.
"Well, it is perfectly ununsubstanstial. It is brilliant, I tell you."
"Lay out your evidence, then."
"First of all, Remus's hair isn't nearly as hetero-threatening as yours is. He can put on eyeliner in less than five minutes, avoids glitter at all costs, and thinks that Lily is fantastic. He also hasn't written any 'I love Padfoot' confessions in his notebook," James explained, grinning. "Which is why I will marry Lily and have a million little Potters, and you will live your life as a miserable, lonely bachelor," James finished, satisfied.
"It's nice to see that you're so concerned for my happiness," Sirius said sardonically.
"As your best mate, it's my job," James said, placing a hand over his heart and sniffing back fake tears.
"Don't worry, Sirius," a voice said from behind them. "Since James has a knack of being wrong about eight-five percent of the time about matters of romance, I doubt that his prediction will come true."
"MOONY!" Sirius and James gasped in unison, turning to face Remus. Remus took a moment to roll his eyes at the utter cliché-ness of it all.
"How long have you been there?" Sirius demanded somewhat nervously.
"Since around the time that you shouted that you were a 'bloody flaming poofter' so loudly that about half of the school heard," Remus replied smartly. "And, yes, I heard everything you said, and, yes, Prongs has awful logic that happened to be true in your case and untrue in mine."
Sirius's face broke out in an anticipating grin. He tried to stifle it as he asked in a horrible imitation of a calm, cool voice, "How is that so?"
"Well, my hair may not be as great as yours, but it is definitely much better than James's. And yes, Prongs, your hair is an awful mess, and does threaten yours, because Lily has told me twice that she likes the color of my hair, and has told you thirty-four times to learn what a comb is. A lack of makeup obsession is moot point, because that is a Padfoot thing, not a gay thing. I attempt to avoid glitter, but Sirius sheds, so it is impossible. And I love Lily, I do, but I wouldn't object if someone silenced her for a couple hours. And, lastly," Remus grinned wolfishly, his smile dancing in his amber eyes, "when is the last time that either of you read my notebook?"
James's eyes widened in horror. Could it be? Was it possible? Was he wrong? Was all of the evidence he had carefully gathered and analyzed false? How could this be? James Potter was never wrong!
Well, fifteen percent of the time.
Sirius, however, was having a very different reaction that included involuntary short squealing noises, jittery hand motions, and a scarily large grin. Remus regarded his friend warily, mentally counting down the seconds before Sirius would explode.
"YOU'RE A POOFTER!" Sirius finally yelled gleefully. Remus gave a slight nod as Sirius shot off James's bed and promptly tackled Remus to the ground. "You're a BLOODY FLAMING POOFTER!"
Remus struggled to breathe underneath the mass of Sirius, shoving futilely at Sirius's head. Eventually, he replied, "I'm glad that you're happy about that," his voice muffled by a mouthful of Sirius's hair.
"I am!" Sirius continued to yell much louder than necessary. "You snog blokes! There are blokes you snog! Blokes snog you!" Suddenly, he stopped, jerking his head up and staring down at poor, trapped Remus. "Wait. You snog blokes? Which blokes have you been snogging? Which blokes have snogged you?"
James let out a small groan. His best friend was a complete, happy, jealous berk.
"For their safety and your freedom, I'd rather not tell you," Remus said, his voice constricted. "And could you please get off my lungs? I rather like breathing."
"W-w-w-wait!" Sirius sputtered. He started moving his fingers through the air, drawing invisible pictures around him as his brain scurried back to one of Remus's earlier statements. "Notebook…my notebook…" he murmured, lost in concentration. "The confession…James is daft…haven't seen notebook…" His eyes widened in joy. He let out a squeal. "Merlin's knee socks!" he finally exclaimed. "You are gay, you snog blokes, and you want to snog me!" His smile widened. "You fancy me! You fancy me! You fancy me!"
"It certainly took you long enough to figure out," Remus replied, more air flowing into his crushed lungs as Sirius slowly sat up. "Yes, I fancy you."
"You do? You do? You really, really do?" Sirius shrieked, disturbingly acting like a mix excited canine counterpart and a first-year girl.
"Would you snog him already?" James asked, rolling his eyes from his perch on his bed. "This procrastination is annoying me. I can't read if you two keep talking."
Sirius, for once listening to his friend's advice, leaned down and kissed Remus squarely on the lips. James grinned and turned back to his magazine, resuming the state of peace that he was in before Sirius had shown up and acted like the whole bloody school didn't already know that he was a poofter.
Sirius carefully pulled away from Remus and kept close, nudging his friend's nose lightly. "So," Sirius started, his breath in Remus's face, "when did you know that I was gay?"
"When I entered your compartment on the train and looked at your hair," Remus replied with a grin. "It was the nicest hair that I had ever seen, even nicer than Lily's. When I looked over at James and his mess of hair, I knew that you definitely weren't competing for the same side as James was." Remus kissed Sirius wetly on his temple, Remus's lips brushing against a stray lock of Sirius's hair. "Your hair was way too hetero-threatening to give any straight man a chance."
"Now you have to compete against me," Sirius said with a small smirk.
"Oh, there's no competition," Remus said as his lips ascended to claim Sirius's, his smirk much larger than his friend's. "I've already won."