It's been a long time since I've updated. More than three months.

For that, I give you permission to kill me.

Disclaimer: I listened in, yes, I'm guilty of this, you should know this; I broke down and wrote you back before you had a chance to forget forgotten…

Chapter 7 – Touching Up On Some Touchy Subjects

Sirius didn't put much thought into what he was doing. He didn't think about what he was going to say. He didn't even bother to think about the kindest way to approach his tiny friend. He barged into the dormitory, no second thoughts, saying, "Dammit Remus, we need to talk, and we need to do it now!"

But Remus wasn't there.

Sirius' blood ran cold. Remus had gone back up to the dorms. They had walked to the parting hallway together, and Sirius had said, "See you later in the dorms Remus!"

Remus had nodded, but he had not looked very happy.

Sirius felt like a downright jerk. It had just occurred to him how very obvious his excuse was to ignore his furry friend. Clearly, Sirius, James and Peter could in no way have had a project they needed to work on that Remus was not a part of, because Remus had all the exact same classes as them. Remus must have thought that they hated him; with his dreadfully low self-confidence, Sirius would not put it past Remus to be planning his suicide at the very moment.

All of a sudden, it struck Sirius as exceedingly crucial to need to find his self-loathing friend.

Sirius fished around in James' trunk for the new little project that they'd been working on – a complete and all detailed map of the school. They'd done a general outline of the school, and then figured out how to put each of them into the map, so that whoever was looking at the map could find out where any of the four Marauders were. They were still trying to make it so that whoever was in the school, at any particular time someone happened to be looking at it, would show up on the map, but none of them had found a spell that could do something quite so advanced.

It took Sirius a moment to find the dot labeled "Remus J. Lupin," but when he did, he couldn't help but feel a little relief. His friend was occupying an empty classroom, not the Astronomy Tower as Sirius had strongly feared.

Oh, I'm just being paranoid, Sirius thought to himself with a grim grin on his face. Remus is not planning his own suicide. He is more likely planning some elaborate hoax to make James and Peter and I sorry that we ever crossed him.

Sirius ignored the tiny little voice in his head that told him that Remus was much more likely to hurt himself than hurt someone else, and traipsed out of the Gryffindor Tower to find his werewolfish friend.


Sirius opened the classroom door slowly and quietly, so as not to scare Remus. Remus frightened easily. "Hey, buddy? Remus? I know you're in here, I can see you on the map, so don't hide or nothing."

Sirius stepped into the classroom and shut the door. For a moment, it seemed like the room was empty. Sirius had a horrible thought that maybe, Remus was here, but not… here…

Then Remus came from behind a pillar, looking embarrassed and sheepish. "Why are you here?" he asked with a small voice. He looked almost like he'd been caught doing something he wasn't supposed to be doing.

Sirius literally pounced on him. "REMUS! YOU'RE ALIVE!!"

Sirius had not realized he was so worried about Remus doing something stupid like suicie. But Sirius had been. He had been more worried than he'd ever been in his entire life about something besides saving his own skin.

"Well, yes, I am," Remus said, not sounding the least bit happy about that fact.

"I was so afraid that when me and James and Peter, when we left to go to the library, that you were so sad and lonely feeling that you decided to come KILL YOURSELF! And then I walked in here, and it said you were here on the map, but there was no noise, and I thought for a second, that you were DEAD!!!" Sirius held onto his friend so tightly, he thought he might break Remus' bones. Well, he's a werewolf, he can stand some pain, Sirius thought, before loosening his grip just a slight.

Remus gave Sirius an awkward sort of pat on the back. "Well… I am not dead."

"You know that we weren't ignoring you," Sirius said, all too aware of how gay he and Remus must look like right then, hugging in the center of an empty classroom in the dead of night. He couldn't bring himself to care though. "We were actually going to the library, because we had something to discuss, and you couldn't hear it!"

He felt Remus' grip slacken.

"Oh, no, wait. That didn't come out right." Sirius then felt like a prat, because really, that had been exactly what they were doing, and there was no way to sugarcoat it to sound better. "Well, that was what we were doing, but it wasn't because you weren't cool enough or anything. Oh bollocks. Remus, don't be mad at me! We just had something important to discuss, and yeah, it was about you. But I can tell you now! I mean. It wasn't something bad about you. We weren't figuring out how to spread rumors that you were shagging Annabelle or anything."

Sirius was now completely conscious of his utter prattiness, judging by the way that Remus was now trying to step away from him. Sirius just couldn't say what he wanted to say, without sounding like a prick.

"Don't take it the wrong way, mate!" Sirius pleaded. "If it wasn't concerning your secret, we'd never have ignored you like that. But if you'd been there, you'd have done everything in your power to keep us from finding the answer, and you know it. Don't deny it, Remus!"

"So I take it, you've now given up on trying to figure me out?" Remus guessed. He was now completely not touching Sirius. He'd even taken a step back, as if Sirius had some nasty blemish right on the tip of his nose or something.

"No, we did figure it out!" Sirius could not keep the proud note out of his voice.

Remus didn't happen to share Sirius' enthusiasm or pride. "Look, you didn't figure it out."

"Yeah. I did."

"No. You didn't!"

"Yes! I most certainly and truly figured out why you leave every month!"

Remus rolled his eyes. "Sirius, if you'd found out, you would definitely not have given a crap whether I killed myself or not."

Sirius glared. "Yes I would! Yes I did! You're my best friend Remus!"

"Heh. Right after JAMES and PETER."

Sirius sighed. "Okay, so honestly, James is my guy when it comes to having fun. But you're my guy when it comes to the more important stuff, like talking! You're the person I'd trust with my SECRETS. You're the one who can reassure me of myself, who can keep me from going over the edge. I wish I could do the same for you, but you never let me, like right now! Remus, I care about you so much. I would fucking go to the Afterlife and drag you back here myself, if you were dead."

Remus looked touched, and a slight bit embarrassed. "Sirius… I…" Remus shook his head. "I don't know what to say, I wish I knew what to say, you know I think the same about you… oh… I can't talk…"

Sirius smiled and hugged him again, not bothering to take into account Remus' unnatural flinching habit. Remus would have to get over that, for he knew Sirius would never hurt him. "I know buddy. I know."

All was quiet, and perfect harmony fell between the two students.

Until:

"But really. You didn't figure out my secret, Sirius."

Sirius pulled away enough to glare down into Remus' now somewhat frightened eyes. "I did too!"

"No…"

"YES!"

"No, really, believe me, you didn't"-

"Yes! I did! YOU ARE A WEREWOLF. One of those humans that turns into a man-eating beast once a month. Every full moon, whatever. Can't touch silver. That type of thing."

Remus had gone so utterly stiff in Sirius' arms that Sirius was afraid he might have given the poor guy a heart attack. "Remus? Are you alright?"

Remus pushed him, with all his force. "What is wrong with you!?"

For a fleeting second, Sirius was a little worried that he'd just made a big fool out of himself. Maybe Remus wasn't really a werewolf. Maybe they'd gotten all the signs wrong. It would be Sirius who'd gotten all the signs wrong, for he'd done most, if not all of the research on Remus.

"Merlin mate, settle down. So you're not a werewolf, I'm sorry, it did NOT require pushing…" Sirius said, feigning a careless voice. He really did hurt somewhere deep down. He'd made a fool out of himself in front of the one person who he was supposed to be able to tell anything. Remus had pushed him away, like a dirty sock, like a moldy piece of toast.

"Why are you even talking to me? I AM a bloody werewolf! You should be running away, far away! Reporting me. Screaming."

Sirius realized that he'd been RIGHT. Remus just didn't understand friendship, that was all that was wrong. "Oh mate, settle down. You don't understand what it means to be best friends, do you? You know, accepting everything, even the flaws, even the big flaws… although I personally don't count it a flaw, I see it more like… a personality trait… with some big consequences-"

"ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND?" Remus' eyes had a crazed look in them. Sirius had never seen his mate like this before. "Just think about it! I am the most hated magical BEAST out there! Everyone hates werewolves, the mothers are always saying, 'Stay inside Johnny, it's a full moon, the werewolves might be out tonight!' And then, even when it's not the full moon, I've still got this… this monster running through my veins! All the time! I AM A MONSTER SIRIUS! I am a cold-blooded, heartless, MONSTER! I deserve to be killed. That book we read in Giltred's class is right. I am more of a burden than anything else. I will never fit in. I will never find true love. I am a beast of burden, and I really should die!"

Sirius was shocked. "But Remus, it's only once a month… and you take your best care not to hurt anybody, I know that…"

"LOOK AT ME!" Remus tore his shirt from his body, and Sirius was presented, in the light of the waning moon, a body more scarred than Sirius could ever have imagined on such an undersized boy. "I am hideous! I do this to myself, but if I weren't locked up, I would be doing this to OTHER PEOPLE! Can't you see how dangerous I am? I'd rip you to shreds in an instant with no second thoughts, and you wouldn't even know it was coming."

Sirius stepped up to Remus slowly. "Okay. So you think you're a monster. Hideous mongrel, child-eating menace, beast of burden, whatever you want to call it."

Remus cringed, obviously expecting something not so nice to come from Sirius after he'd started to speak.

"But Remus, there's a flaw in your logic, and that is that a monster does not do things in order to save others grief. No monster would have offered to do my homework for me. No monster would lock himself up and let himself take all of the pain that shouldn't really be happening to them. What the stereotypical monster werewolves do are hurt people, because they don't want themselves to get hurt by locking themselves up. Except you don't care for yourself much, do you? Because you're willing to beat up yourself once a full moon to save someone else the pain. Not many werewolves are as kind and selfless as you are, Remus. So, you may read that werewolves are a terror to society, only caring about themselves, unleashing pain onto others as selfishly as possible. But you're not one of those werewolves, Remus. You're not. You're not a monster. You care so much about humanity that you're willing to hurt yourself to save others."

Sirius was well aware that his speech was a little cheesy, and that he'd have been teased endlessly had he said something like this to James or Peter. But Remus appeared to have taken it right to heart. He stepped forward, timidly, but forward, to Sirius and kind of wordlessly asked for a hug. He'd awkwardly held his hands up a little bit, and widened his arm span just the slightest. Sirius had picked the hint up almost instantly and accepted Remus into his arms.

I am such a homosexual.

"So you don't think I'm ugly?" Remus asked, just barely above a whisper.

"No! Where would you get that idea?"

"M-my scars…"

Sirius just shook his head. "NO. You are not ugly! I wish you wouldn't have to do that to yourself every month though. I wish I could stop it."

"You can't."

"I know. I just really hate the idea of you in pain."

Remus grinned against Sirius' shoulder.

They maintained a comfortable silence for a little while, and then made their way back up to the dorms.

Sirius noticed, with a somewhat possessive grin on his face, that Remus was now happy again. He was smiling like crazy. He attempted to hide it whenever Sirius looked at him, but Sirius didn't mind. It had been because of him that Remus was happy. Sirius felt like the king of the world.

Peter and James were already there when Sirius and Remus came back. "See James? I told you they were off shagging," Peter said matter-of-factly as soon as they walked in the door.

Sirius punched him.

"So, Sirius, did you… you know?" James asked, after Peter had fallen down on the floor clutching his bleeding nose. Remus kneeled down beside him and tried to help him, leaving James and Sirius mostly ignored.

"We didn't shag, I'm not gay!"

"NO! I mean. You know. Did you, tell him?"

Sirius flushed a deep shade of red. "Yeah. He knows that we know."

"Why were you guys gone then?" James then asked. Sirius could hear the hint of a sexual innuendo in his words.

"I'm twelve years old James! What are you expecting from me, you sick perv?!"

Ah. All was well in the Gryffindor Second-Year Boys Dormitory.

Well, minus the tiny little miniscule unimportant details that one of them was bleeding, one of them was horny, one of them was contemplating his sexuality, and one of them was a werewolf. But what else would you expect from a group of four cooped up twelve year old boys?

The End

That felt like an awkward place to end it. Oh well.

So, I might write a "sequel": the same story, only all the events would be from Remus' point of view. Would that be too redundant?

I also think I am going to write a story about Sirius' sexuality. I mean, seriously. He is so gay; he needs a story written about it. :P