Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.
James had of course thought about his friend's relationships. He'd thought about Peter suddenly admitting that he was in love with Sirius for his brilliant hair, he'd thought about Remus confessing to James that he had discreetly kept his infatuation secret from him for years, and he'd even contemplated a love triangle between Sirius, Peter, and Remus.
As a best friend, you had to think about this stuff.
James had always had an obsession with being dramatic and theatrical. So reflecting on what could happen in the future with his friends was always a fun hobby of James' when he was incredibly bored in class.
Especially history class.
He was sure that by the end of Seventh Year, one of his fairytales will have come true. It was impossible for four boys to be such close friends for that long without considering their sexuality and studying the thought of being involved with their mates. James knew that all of the boys in his dormitory would sneak a discreet peek at the others when they changed into their pajamas. Everyone looked.
Even though he created, knew, and thought of his school relationship fantasies, he would not want to have one ever done.
Sirius and him were best friends. So were Remus and him. And so was Peter and him.
But Sirius and him were best friends. Buddies. Mates.
If Sirius would run off with Peter or Remus, all of that 'best friend' stuff would be slowly dwindling away with each cuddling session in the common room or kissing conferences in deserted classrooms. All that lovey-dovey stuff was not for manly guys. But James knew that all that would happen anyway.
He always had had a suspicion that Sirius and Remus were closer than friends, and that worried James. He wasn't against homosexuality. Just against losing a best friend.
James traipsed sleepily up the stairs, exhausted tiredly from all the enthusiasm that had broiled up over the day's time. He had made new friends, he had found attractive girls for future dates, and he had gotten lost in secret passageways.
For a first day at Hogwarts with a brilliant feast, it was a very good time.
Smiling, James jumped about on the stairs with excitement for the day to come, when he heard voices sifting softly through the dormitory door.
"Yeah, I don't clean mine. It's just such a messy deal, if you touch it so much that it's just going to get dirty the day after anyway." Sirius' strong voice fell through the cracks of the bottom of the door.
"Really? I think the smoother, the better."
"Believe me, Remus, I've been around them for so long, sometimes thestickier the better. It's how I tell mine out from the rest of them." Sirius scoffed.
James pressed his ear against the door scrutinizingly, wondering what the hell they were talking about, even though he did have a faint idea bubbling in the back of his mind dreadfully.
"How long is yours?"
James scrunched up his face. Yes. Definitely talking about that.
He could hear Sirius tut confidently. "Thirteen inches."
"Ooh. Mine's about ten. It's probably stubby compared to yours." Remus complimented.
"It's not always the bigger the better." Sirius replied wisely.
James felt something lurch up his throat unpleasantly, shutting his eyes closed tightly. They needed to stop talking.
For knowing someone for approximately seven hours, you should not be talking about what's-under-the-boxers.
"Can I see yours?" Remus asked eagerly.
There was some rustling about when he heard Remus sigh deeply in envy.
"Howgorgeous, Sirius. It looks so delicately made."
"I know," Sirius said cockily. "what about yours?"
"It's right here." Remus said.
"Oh, Remus, you have nothing to be ashamed of with that. It's not short! It looks more like eleven inches, than ten… and you actually keep yours clean."
Before James could hear more, he ran from the stairs hurriedly, muttering "ew ew ew ew" over and over again.
Meanwhile, behind the oak door of the dormitory, Remus and Sirius put their wooden wands back into their cases and hid them carefully in the cabinet of the bedside end tables.
It had not been a dark and stormy night. The dark and stormy night had been two days before, but not the current night in question. It was dark, yes, but the sky was also clear except for a few boldly twinkling stars and a waning moon.But anyway, it was a chilly night in the middle of October. There was a brobdingnagian pumpkin in the middle of the Great Hall, behemothic enough to fit five or six students within it comfortably. Sirius had been festive enough to wear his tall black witch's hat in spirit of Halloween. It was then that James first noticed the suspiciously not so much idiosyncratic behavior on his two friend's parts. But he decided not to read into it much. Knowing Sirius, the unusual behavior was probably because of some prank plotting or eating too many cauldron cakes.
Sirius kept staring up into the miraculous sky of the Great Hall uneasily, staring specifically at the silver moon that was currently crescent shaped. James didn't notice it much.
Then Sirius kept sending apprehensive glances at Remus, ones that were so ambiguous and only remarkable if they were truly sought for.
But Remus Lupin had extraordinary senses, and it did not take long for him to set down his fork and knife calmly to stare Sirius straight in the eye and confront him about the edgy looks he had been getting.
"Sirius, is something wrong?"
Sirius first raised both eyebrows in a seemingly innocent gesture, before he shook his head and sighed to his plate. "Yes. I need to go to the bathroom." He stood up abruptly from the table's benches. He gave Remus a small little discreet brush on the shoulder that was supposed to come across as a tap. "Um, Remus, come with me?"
Remus dropped his silverware once again in surprise, staring at James with shock. It was a well-known rule that boys did not accompany one another to the bathroom. Yes, girls (especially the giggly ones) wouldn't mind falling asleep in the same sleeping bag or talking about puberty or even going to the bathroom together just because they could, but boys and particularly Marauders did not do the same thing.
"Dude." James said worriedly, staring at Sirius. "Do you thing or something on your thing?"
Sirius' face wrinkled up incredulously. "I – no. No, James, I don't have a thing on my thing. Now leave my thing out of this!" And then he walked off imperiously with a hint of a stomp in his step. Remus awkwardly rose from the bench.
"Um… do you think I should still follow him?" he asked quietly.
"That'ssick, mate." James replied, focusing on his dinner.
James certainly did not ask Remus or Sirius what had happened in the bathroom after dinner seeing as they did not return to dinner or to the common room until about nine. Both looking extremely stiff, they hastily shut themselves into the dormitory. James raised one dark eyebrow at the staircase after them.
Peter jumped up to the front of the couch, looking at James uneasily.
"Hey, I think we should ask them what's going on."
"What?" James said, turning to face Peter.
"I think you should ask them what they were doing in the bathroom!" Peter hissed silently, his eyes shiftily glancing around the bustling common room.
James gaped. "What?! No! Look Peter, I don't know why the hell you want to know what happened in the gents during dinner but if you're looking for porn don't ask me to get it for you!"
Peter looked stunned, his watery eyes as wide as doughnuts. All right, maybe that was exaggerating it. But they did look as wide as the hole within a doughnut.
"Don't say it that loud!" Peter chastised, his cheeks scarlet as he scurried off. James looked smugly satisfied with himself.
"That kid's probably gotten himself an erection."
"Is there anything that comes out of your mouth that isn't dirty, Potter?" Lily spat, looking down disapprovingly at James' smirking face.
"Sorry, Evans. I guess I'm go hide in the dormitory now to avoid a spanking about my naughty thoughts…" he gave her a suggestive waggle of the eyebrows accompanied by what he thought was a roguish wink, "or maybe I'll stay down here and let me get my spanking. Will you be the one delivering it?"
Lily rolled her eyes. "I like the hide in the dormitory idea much better. Unless you want me to fetch Snape to give you that spanking?" she challenged, putting her hands on her hips crossly.
James shuddered at the thought and decided that he would hide in the dormitory to avoid Lily actually hunting down Snape. She was the girl who would do so simply because James had been foolish enough to ramble something unintelligible in front of the girl that always made him tongue-tied. Bowing out gracefully, James hurried up the stairs but stopped in front of the door as he heard familiar voices.
He remembered the last time he was in a predicament like this. First year. Lots of talk. Lots of unpleasant images. There was a fierce battle promptly starting in James' mind whether he should rush downstairs and get that spanking from Snape or continue to hear the details of Remus' and Sirius' presumably revolting conversation.
He hesitated, weighing options and swaying on the spot as his mind tugged him in different directions.
James chose the nauseating discussion.
"I… I just… please don't tell James. Or Peter. I'm sorry Sirius, but it's just too much. Can we give it some time?" Remus' distinct voice, not his usual characteristic controlled-over-voice, but instead a shaking voice that spoke with suppressed emotion that was threatening to spill over the surface.
James contemplated the means of the conversation. Did Sirius really have a thing on his thing and had showed it to Remus and Remus simply didn't want to tell him and Peter that he had stared at Sirius' thing? James hurriedly removed that from his list of suggestions.
Perhaps Remus was a vampire, or a reincarnated spirit of even a werewolf and Sirius had found out! No, no, that certainly wasn't it… Laughing to himself at his over the top ideas, James crossed that off his mental list as well.
Maybe Remus had a strange sleeping fetish that Sirius had found out. Like he sucked his thumb or had a bunch of stuffed animals he hid underneath his pillow during the day and snuggled fondly during the night. While he sucked his thumb. Maybe the stuffed animals sucked his thumb. Maybe they sucked something else.
James hastily rid that image of his head, deciding he better go with someone more realistic.
But it was when Sirius spoke as well that a new idea flitted into his brain and sprouted a new image that was much harder to get rid of.
"Remus, I would never betray a secret like that. I mean, I'm involved in it too."
"I… I think that James would frown upon it if he heard about it himself." Remus said quietly.
"C'mon, Remus, you know that's not true. James would accept you for who you are. He's already done that for me, and look at how fucked up I am."
James' eyes widened. Sirius and Remus were together, obviously, and Remus didn't trust James to accept the two of them as homosexuals.
Feeling indignant, James felt obliged to clear his name of all of the doubt and unfaithfulness. Reaching for the doorknob, James marched in, to be most surprised by what he heard next.
"That's different, Sirius, I'm a fucking werewolf–"
James gasped. "Oh my god." He murmured faintly, the whole room blurring. Two pairs of eyes snapped onto James, who was clutching at the door for support. Remus was looking equally light-headed.
"I – James, I can explain–"
But James interrupted with a sigh of relief. "Thank god you're just a werewolf and not a homosexual with Sirius."
"I – what?" Remus asked quickly, his gaze flicking over to Sirius before turning back to James.
"I mean, I would have to find myself a new best friend!" With another sigh of relief, James smiled woozily. "Just a werewolf! Not a queer!"
"Erm – James. James. Can you hand me my boxers? I forgot to get my clothes when I took a shower."
Peter's head was poking out of the door to the bathroom up in the dormitory, droplets of soapy water dripping out onto the carpet from Peter's mop of messy blond hair.
"You forgot your boxers, Peter?"
"Justplease hand them to me, James." Peter pleaded nervously.
"No way, dude, I'm not gonna touch them!"
"C'mon, James, they're just over there in my trunk!"
Sirius laughed, walking over to Peter trunk and flicking his wand, so the lid popped open and a pair of lime green boxers floated out.
"Huh, I wear briefs. Real men wear briefs." Sirius commented.
Peter flushed behind the door, his face becoming steadily crimson. "Just – just levitate them over, extending a wet hand.
Sirius, however, sneaked over and peered at the tag inside the boxers. "Asmall size, Peter? Is your package that tiny?"
Peter blushed more, waggling his fingers around as though still desperately awaiting his boxers.
Remus stood up from his bed. "For Merlin's sake, Sirius, it's not like you carry an extra large in your trunk."
Sirius tutted. "Curse you, Remus Lupin!" he teased dramatically. "I am very gifted down there."
"I doubt that, Sirius. You're twelve."
James was painfully reminded of the incident behind the door in First Year, and winced.
"Haven't you guys already had this conversation? No need to have it again." James complained.
Both Sirius and Remus paled scarily fast, the color draining out of their skin like a bucket of water being emptied in one giant slosh. The boxers Sirius had levitated fell to the floor, causing Peter to dash forward with a towel wrapped around his waist, grabbing the boxers and heading back inside the bathroom hastily. "What are you talking about, James?" Sirius asked, his voice an octave higher.
"First year?" James said uncomfortably. The tension couldn't be cut with any average butterknife. James would need to fetch a butcher knife he if he wanted to break the awkwardness. "First night of Hogwarts?"
"Erm – what?"
James was willing for the conversation to change more than he wanted to date Lily Evans. Well – maybe not.
"The whole – who's is bigger thing?" James murmured uneasily, scratching the back of his head. He wanted to hide behind his canopy curtains. Or just be swallowed by his canopy curtains.
Remus turned white, Sirius following him soon. They looked like snowmen wearing school uniforms.
Peter had returned from the bathroom now, dressed sloppily with his hair still drenched in a soapy mess. He didn't realize the paleness of all of his friends.
"James – we, er – we didn't talk about that."
"Yes you did."
"Just because we're friends doesn't mean we talk about our privates." Sirius defended heatedly. Peter had looked up from his trunk alarmingly now.
"Just because you're friends doesn't mean you can't." James said back. "You said that yours was thirteen inches, and yours, Remus, was ten. And – and then you both showed them to each other!" By this point, James was squealing revoltingly, disgust spitting from his words.
Sirius swallowed audibly, looking ready to gag.
"This is ridiculous," he said. "Even the great Sirius Black does not have a thirteen inch package."
Remus echoed his swallow.
All four pairs of eyes in the room shifted down to Sirius' trousers, as if to check if Sirius' statement was true, before they all coughed unnervingly and wandered away from one another.
"Okay people!" Sirius said loudly. "As much as I would love to take off my pants and show you exactly how big I am, I won't, because I'm pretty sure that Peter would faint."
"Hey! I don't faint! I drop from lack of consciousness." Peter defended.
"Anyway, James, we were talking about our bloody wands!" Sirius shouted wildly.
James flushed. "I… you were?"
"Yes!" Sirius shouted. "We are not that perverted!"
"That's not true." Peter piped in quietly. Sirius glared at his like death itself while James chuckled fondly.
"Shutup, Peter!" Sirius ordered, but James held up a hand to stop his dark-haired friend.
"No, no, he's right. Dude, we are so badass, it's insane."
Remus buried his face in his hands, giving a wail reminiscent of a chicken's birthing cry.
"Why, oh why, am I involved in this conversation?" his miserable and muffled voice whined.
"Because James thought that you had a ten inch–"
"All right, all right, all right, it was a rhetorical question!" Remus said heatedly, backing away.
Peter had his eyes shut tightly by the time James and Sirius finally paid attention to him.
"Please please please tell me that you were talking about length of essays?" The blond-haired boy pleaded, and for his sanity and everyone else's in the room, Remus hurriedly replied.
"Yes, Peter. We were talking about essays."
The night of New Years Eve, the four Marauders were sitting on the floor, Sirius and James playing goofily with a lit wand for spooky effects. They had passed giving resolutions hours ago, and now they were just sharing young childhood stories.
"Here, James, aim the wand that way, I bet you can't make an owl shadow out of your hands!" Sirius challenged as James shone light onto a clear wall. Sirius drew up his pale hands and made a complicated gesture with his fingers.
"Sirius, did you just give the wall the finger?" Remus asked, eyebrows raised at the now clear wall.
"Yeah!" Sirius said, chuckling. "I knew all of you were looking, so I just decided to do something funny."
"Har har." James said sardonically.
"Can we stop making crude shadows at the wall now and continue with something more mature?" Remus asked pleadingly, but Sirius tutted.
"Who said we're mature?" he said incredulously, roaring with laughter at his own joke with James.
"Ineffable, you two." Remus scoffed, admonishing his friends strictly. Peter yawned in the darkness.
"I think I'm going to go to bed." He slurred. "I can't deal with this when I'm drunk on New Year's Eve."
The blond-haired boy stumbled unsteadily to his four poster, leaving Remus sighing at the two boys in front of him.
"If you two ever get married, what in hell would your wives think when you roll around the floor laughing like goons?"
James stopped giggling, looking up at Remus. "Lily would disapprove. And then we'd snog. And then she'd approve."
Sirius chuckled, poking James in the stomach playfully. "As if her brain would have dwindled away enough to actually have the nonsensical thought to marry you."
The other black-haired boy pushed his glasses up his nose indignantly, his forehead wrinkled in contemplation. "Meanie." He said to Sirius before he smugly smirked. "But you are forgetting that Evans still sees my unmistakable good looks."
Sirius tore that thought to pieces immediately. "Plush, Potter! All of your looks are skin deep, and even then you have to dig pretty deep."
James wasn't insulted. "I don't care! Evans can do all of the digging she wants to."
"Urghles. Bad image, Prongs." Sirius said, squeezing his eyes shut.
"Lily and I would be adorable together!" James retorted rapidly.
"No you wouldn't!"
James drunkenly stood up, and Remus could see by the woozy look in his face and rolling of his eyes that he had received an alcoholic head rush. Remus winced.
"With friends like you who needs enemies?!" James said furiously, and staggered off to his bed, tripping over his own feet on the way.
Sirius giggled dazedly. "Well, I'm be tickled pink." He said. "Prongsie is whipped by Evans… and… and her shovel."
He hiccupped hopelessly at the end of his speech. Remus raised an eyebrow.
Sirius made feeble, half-hearted digging motions with his hands. "You know… the… the digging. Evans digs James. For – for the beauty."
Remus looked up at the ceiling with a rapid roll of the eyes.
"You need to get some sleep, my dear boy."
"Noooohhh…" Sirius moaned, but Remus hoisted Sirius up by his collar before carrying him away to bed.
"Look at the happy couple coming back from their Honeymoon." James murmured as he peered around his curtains. Remus sneered at him.
"Fuck off." He ordered.
"Fucking off." James replied wearily. "Do you really want me to do that?"
Remus head spun over to the boy, eyes wide. "No! No, I didn't it that way!" He promptly deposited Sirius over his sheets before hurrying over to his own bed.
James chuckled at the image of Remus carrying Sirius dutifully to his sheets… but the picture quickly faded away as sleep engulfed him rapidly.
James was in a tux. The collar was itchy and the black bowtie was tight around his neck. James pulled at it uncomfortably, moaning quietly as he took a deep breath. He stared around himself, and as the initial shock dispersed, James realized that he was in a church, a large white alter next to him. Gold bells hung from the alter, charmed to ding continuously. It got annoying, but James was not going to tell the Minister – who happened to be Dumbledore – to shut up the shining bells. Instead he stared at the impeccably staged chairs in front of him, and his eyes fell upon Lily, Remus' parents, his own parents, and what looked like the entire Hogwarts staff room. And, with a horrified gasp, he noticed Snape sitting in the back row, looking extremely morose and revengeful. For a moment, James wondered if Snape had perhaps prepared a complicated potion and slipped it into some of the goblets at the buffet table, but the thought left his brain as heavenly music started from nowhere.
He felt Peter nudge him anxiously at the ribs, giving an excited little noise. James looked over; Peter was also in a suit, except that his jacket was much too snug and his pants hanging loosely on his legs, too large for his limbs.
Traditional Peter, James thought fondly, always disproportional.
The music hit a note off key, but it was unnoticeable as now another man in a tux walked down the white runway. He was unfamiliar to James, so he looked away, still gazing among the crowd.
He felt a smile cross his lips as Sirius walked jauntily to the alter, his hair sleek and glistening in the light, his face plastered with a smile and a smirk at the same time. He nodded curtly to the recognizable faces in the crowd before he hopped excitedly up the marble steps. He gave a toothy grin to James before taking his place within the alter. James' eyes widened as he realized that Sirius was the one getting married, and that he was wearing a frilly white dress. But who was the bride? Or the groom? James wasn't sure whom…
But his question was answered as Remus walked into the room, also wearing a puffy white dress. When he too had reached the steps, Dumbledore gave a wise smile to the two men before him, not giving a second glance to the blatant and conspicuous dresses.
At least there were no veils.
Dumbledore began chanting a wedding speech of sorts, James never listened to them, and he had no reason to when there was such entertaining sights in front of him. After some meticulous observing, James noticed that Sirius' dress had lace trim and pearls around the halter neck. It was quite horrifying all in all, but James found it more amusing than anything else.
Remus started his vow, and James vaguely remembered Remus writing it with him, but it was an ambiguous thought that was more in the back of him mind than anything else. It was a subconscious ponder that was certainly in the back of his dream-driven brain. James hurriedly shook his black mop of hair, as if shaking the thought loose.
Sirius launched into his own words of declaration of love, a silly and somewhat mischievous grin. The beam of his face was a dead give away that he had completed some sort of prank, but James knew that Sirius would not disrupt such a wonderful ceremony with a joke, so James' mind immediately sprung to the reception. Was there exploding frosting in some of the balloons? The thought was not the most appealing, as James had experienced food in his hair before, and it was not only sticky and glutinous, but it also made his messy hair stringy – a look that did not work for him. And James definitely did not want to wear white icing all over himself when Lily was in the seats before him.
By this point Dumbledore was levitating the rings out of two diamond-adorned boxes. They magically slipped themselves onto Sirius' and Remus' fingers before the two of them wrapped their wedding-dress clad arms around each other and pressed their lips together. James clapped along politely with everyone else, but now he was eager to check the balloons or anything else in the reception for something out of the ordinary… Nose-biting teacups at the tables? Shoe-eating devices hidden underneath tablecloths? Tongue-enlargers in the appetizers? James made a mental note to steer clear or the buffet table before he disappeared after the two brides – or two grooms? – watching Peter carrying both of their dress's trains after them clumsily.
James woke with a start at the sound of a loud grunt from Sirius' bed. James blinked multiple times to make sure that he was not at his friend's wedding and that they were not cross-dressing, as the image was permanently engraved in his brain.
Staring fixedly at his dark canopy, he slipped out of his bed and hurried to the water pitcher at the end of the dormitory.
This time, James did not remind himself to avoid wedding cuisine, but to no longer drink alcohol before bed.
Remus was rifling through what seemed like a never-ending pile of textbooks for the right answer to a question nagging his brain. His O.W.L.S. were just around the corner, and while he did envy Sirius and James for their excellent grades despite their slacking off, he knew that if they wouldn't study for exams they surely wouldn't pass them with high marks, so he felt a sense of satisfaction that he was actually ahead of his two friends.
"When will you finally notice that I've been adding books to your pile over there?" Sirius' voice drifted over to him suddenly, and Remus jumped surprisingly. Sirius was carrying quite a few books in his fingers, his expression seemingly innocent. Remus sighed, smiling nonetheless. Nonchalantly, Sirius put yet another book to Remus' heap of literature.
"See? You're as oblivious as James."
Remus chuckled, rubbing at his tired eyes. "Perhaps I am. But exams are so near, Sirius."
"So?" Sirius leant over the table slightly. "I want to enjoy life in the Wizarding World while it lasts. Are you truly excited to leave Hogwarts and vanish into the Muggle lifestyle again?"
Remus sighed. "What if I become an Auror? Or a Healer? Or a Professor here? I'll stay in the Wizarding World."
Sirius shook his head. "Come on, at one time or another you'll just disperse into the Muggle life again."
Remus shrugged. "Muggle life isn't that bad."
"Oh really? Remus, Muggles are so… old-fashioned. Maids take forever to clean. Chefs take forever to cook! I mean, you can go to work nine hours straight and then come back, and they still haven't finished making your bed."
The tawny-haired boy rolled his eyes.
"Muggles have no taste."
"They have no wands."
"And not one single Sirius Black."
Remus winced, a pained expression flitting over his face for a moment before he soothingly rubbed his temples.
"Then I'll just have to take you with me."
"Nuh-uh, boyfriend!" Sirius retorted.
"Come on, Sirius, people give up a good thing for better things," Remus reasoned logically. "Did you just call me boyfriend?"
Sirius smiled cheekily. "I think I did. Didn't I?"
"Yes." he responded dryly, licking the roof of his mouth with a clicking sound before he grabbed his book bag and slung it around his shoulders.
"Are we going?" Sirius asked eagerly.
"Yeah," Remus finalized with a sigh, "Are you coming?"
Sirius tweaked his own nose. "Yeah."
The four of them all clapped each other on the back as they saw each other at the station. Of course Remus had been first to wait, fidgeting in anticipation, by the barrier and sitting on his trunk. James and Sirius had then bounded up, tackling the werewolf and causing him to fall off the back of his trunk in the most ungraceful way he could; feet flying and girlish screams echoing.
Peter hadn't run onto the train until the smoke had started to puff and the wheels had started to churn ever-so-slightly.
"Do you think Lily will be excited to see me?" James asked in the compartment,
"Uhm, sure. She'll just die over you. Or she might die because of you." Sirius said, slapping James on the back encouragingly.
"What did she do last year on the train?"
"Didn't she charm a clothespin onto his nose?"
"No, no that was fourth year."
"Righhtt. Then what did she do last year?"
"As far as I remember, James sprouted a rabbit tail for a week or so."
"That thing was so cute.
"Everyone thought he wore a codpiece for that first week!"
"Enough!" James said swiftly, holding up a hand. "I'm changing into my robes." He yanked a blur of black out of his bag before he wandered over to the bathroom. "I don't know why I'm not hanging out with my Head Boy and Head Girl friends."
"Um… because they're not your friends?" Sirius supplied. Remus nodded.
"I think I'm going to change too." Peter announced, and got his own robes out of his bag. "See you guys in a moment."
Sirius smiled at Remus. "I've missed you this summer."
"I missed you too, Padfoot."
"No, I really mean it." With a smile that tugged on the corners of his lips, Sirius ruffled Remus' hair before he gave him a brief kiss on the mouth.
Remus blinked multiple times before he recoiled in surprise.
"Nnergh." He mumbled, staring at his friend shockingly. "I – what? What? Fuck."
James pranced back into the compartment.
James could feel the tension in the bedroom as the four Marauders undressed in silence and disappeared into their beds. James waited in his own four-poster patiently, clicking his tongue and examining his fingertips in boredom. And finally, the soft sound of padding footsteps. The distinct sound of Sirius' stumble over his own feet filled James' ears before he heard the rustle of sheets.
Sirius sighed, glancing up at Remus' eclipsed and sheepish face.
"All right," he said sternly, breaking the silence all too roughly. "You know you have something to say."
"I – I'm not the only one." Remus said back apprehensively. Sirius shrugged.
"Yes, but I know that you want to talk first, because if not you'll want to interrupt me to argue my points. But you're too polite to interrupt me, so instead you grind your teeth together and that sound really annoys me." Sirius confessed truthfully, holding out a hand as an invitation for Remus to start.
"Okay," Remus said. "Okay. I'll start."
Sirius sat on the bed patiently.
"I feel like a fish," the tawny-haired boy began with a deep breath, staring at the sheets and not paying attention to the fact that his words didn't make the most sense. "Like I'm a fish and you're a shark. No – no, that isn't right – you're the sea, yes, you're the sea and I'm a fish. Right. And there… there are better fish and sharks – the sharks are totally in your league, they're practically the king of the sea – and I'm just a normal fish. And I live in the abyss of the sea and I don't deserve to be picked. I mean, sometimes I wish that I would be the fish that you would choose out of the entire sea."
He took a deep breath. Sirius cleared his throat, ready to intercept his friend's monologue, but Remus started first.
"Wait a moment. I don't think you are the sea. Maybe you are the shark…?"
"But sharks eat fish." Sirius said hastily.
"Right. So then maybe you're the human? The scuba diver…?" Remus mused aloud. "No, I think you're the fisherman and why would you pick me? You could, erm, catch sharks instead. I mean, I'm practically the size of bait."
Sirius never thought he'd see the day where he would be making more sense than Remus. After he was sure that Remus was done, he faintly muttered:
"What?" he said. "I'm sorry Moony, but I lost you when I was turning into the human."
"Don't apologize," Sirius said hastily, "and don't apologize for apologizing. Let me just get one thing straight, Remus. There is no sea. There are no sharks, no fisherman, no scuba divers–"
"But then no one wants the fish." Remus said sulkily.
"Stop it, Remus," Sirius said firmly. "Just let me talk. There are no fish."
"But then there isn't a naturally working ecosystem, Padfoot–"
"Exactly!" Sirius said exasperatedly. "I don't want a working ecosystem, I just want you, okay?"
Remus glanced up in trepidation. "Sirius," he said slowly, "you do know that without a working ecosystem, I wouldn't be here either, right?"
Sirius let his face fall onto the bed before he bounced back up again. Before Remus could launch into another analogy of fish and fisherman and how no one wants the fish, Sirius captured his friend's lips in his own and grasped his face in his hands so that he wouldn't jerk away in surprise.
When they separated a moment later, just enough so they could catch a pocket of air again, Sirius pressed their mouths together yet again and this time ran his fingers throughout the messy tawny hair. Remus responded this time, his hands flying up the grab Sirius by the hips. Sirius moaned, not letting his back support the two of them anymore. They toppled backwards onto the bed, and the moment their heads hit the pillow Remus pulled away.
"You said you wanted to talk too." He reminded Sirius.
"That's right," Sirius said breathlessly, straightening himself out. "The point is. The point is. The point is that I love you."
There was a ringing silence that continued profusely in Remus' mind. A headache struck him a second later.
"So – so you do want the fish?"
Sirius wanted to protest this strange analogy, but instead he just sighed and nodded. "Yes, Moony. I want the fish."
"But, but. But just because we're friends doesn't mean we can kiss." Remus rambled.
"Yes," Sirius agreed softly, "But just because we're friends doesn't mean we can't."
A bed away, James peered quietly out from behind his hangings.
"Well, finally," he murmured to himself underneath his breath. "I knew this was going to happen."