AN: This fic was written for my dearest RemusLives' birthday. This is the first time I've really written Lupin so I hope you enjoy. Also huge thanks to MistyMist whose prompts finally got me going. It didn't end up as smut but I think it's cute anyhow : )
Lupin wasn't incredibly surprised when he found Hermione in the library of Grimmauld Place. The room was full of ancient tomes most likely banned at Hogwarts, and he knew the girl could never pass up the opportunity to read them.
What did surprise him, however, was that he found her there at such a late hour. The clock in the kitchen had ticked by 3:00am as he was grabbing some of the leftover roast from the fridge.
"You're certainly up late," he commented, startling her. She glared at him for the briefest moment before her expression softened.
"I thought you were Ron," she admitted, blushing deeply. Remus couldn't fight the grin that came to his lips.
"Ah, late night rendezvous, eh? That explains it."
"No!" she shouted hastily. "I just... If it were him, he'd probably end up laughing at me, at which point I'd snap at him and we'd be fighting again."
Hermione snorted. "Hardly."
"So," Lupin began, taking a seat on the sofa in the corner, "why would he make fun of you?"
She licked her lips nervously, pink tongue flicking out for the briefest of appearances. "It's nothing," she said hastily.
"It can't be nothing if you were worried about it."
"Oh fine," she sighed. "Maybe you can help. You see, I was reading this book on ancient spells and remedies, mostly old wives tales and superstition from before the science of potions was really developed. That got me looking at several texts about home brewing, also old books mind you, and-"
"Not to be rude, but would you care to get to the point of all this?"
"Oh." She licked her lips again, a nervous habit he'd never been aware of before but now couldn't ignore. "Yes, right. Several of the formulas seemed fundamentally sound so I decided to try them."
"Ah. What did you make?"
Lupin snorted, earning a sharp glare from the young girl. "Sorry," he apologized. "I was just expecting something a bit more advanced from you."
"Well I wouldn't test out something potentially dangerous on my first go, now would I?"
"Fair enough. So what's the problem?"
She smiled awkwardly, then lifted her hand, along with the book he could now she was attached to her palm.
If looks could kill, the one Hermione gave him when he burst out laughing would have shot him to the afterlife in an instant.
"I'm sorry," he gasped, forcing his face to a more neutral expression. "It's just so..."
"Stupid? Foolish? Ridiculous?" She sniffed self-righteously, but her eyes appeared damp in the firelight.
"Unlike you," he finally finished, his tone soft. "This I'd expect from Ron, or Fred and George, but not you."
"Oh." She bit her lip this time and looked at him apologetically. "Sorry I snapped at you."
Lupin eased himself up from the sofa, coming to sit in a chair next to her. He shook his head and gave her unstuck hand a squeeze. "I shouldn't have laughed. But never mind about that. Let's see if we can solve this and get you off to bed."
She nodded wearily. "I may actually be the last to wake up tomorrow."
"Won't that be a first. Now, I wasn't all that great in potions myself, but let me see the instructions for starters.
Hermione opened the book awkwardly, letting her stuck hand rest on the table to support the weight of the pages. "It's right here on page 746, Charmless Sticking. It's specifically designed to resist any charms or spells to break the adhesion."
Lupin groaned. "So scourgify or something to that effect won't work then?"
"No. And don't think I didn't try, just in case."
"And there's no remedy listed in the book?"
"Hmm. Well, I'm out of ideas."
Hermione let out a small laugh, her hair getting tossed behind her shoulders in the process. "Some help you are," she teased.
"Hey now, I warned you that potions isn't my thing. Would you like me to Floo Severus?"
"Oh Merlin, no!" She closed her eyes in embarrassment and he couldn't help laughing. "That was terribly rude of me."
"Nah," Lupin chuckled. "Don't blame you for disliking the greasy-haired git."
Hermione gave him a disapproving look. "Now that really was rude."
"And yet I'm not taking it back."
She eyed him as if there was something she wanted to say, but she never voiced it, opting instead to turn back to the book.
"I've tried everything I can think of, even some muggle solvents, but nothing works."
Something clicked in Lupin's mind.
"Wolfsbane? Somehow I don't think a potion for werewolves will be much help here."
"No, not the potion itself, but one of the steps. Before adding the acodite, you use willow extract which separates the components of the potion temporarily."
"That could work!" Hermione kissed him excitedly on the cheek, then ran out, book on hand. Moments later she came running back, pages flapping. "I knew I had seen some in the pantry! Here."
She handed the vial to Lupin who sloshes the liquid around for a moment. "Looks about right. Now, just put your hand on the table and keep it steady. I'll pour the extract, and as soon as it's done its job, we'll pull your hand free. The effect is only temporary, so we must work quickly, understand?"
Hermione nodded, her eyes fixed on the attached book. "Go ahead."
Lupin emptied the vial along the edge of her palm and the book cover. Seconds later the two began to separate and he pulled her hand away.
"Success!" he cheered while Hermione heaved a sigh of relief. The feeling was short-lived, however, and she turned to him apprehensively.
"Yes?" He turned, enjoying the fact that she still called him that.
She glanced down the length of his arm to where their hands were joined. Permanently.
"That was the only vial of extract."
"Ah." He lifted his hand, watching as hers was tugged along in the process. "We'll have to go to an apothecary in the morning."
"But what about me finally getting to sleep?" she asked with an uncharacteristic whinge.
"Suppose it can't be helped." He grinned. "So, your bed or mine?"
For fanfic writers, there are two things that bring them joy: the creation of their work, and the response of its readers. Please take the time to review, not only this fic but any other you read. Thank you.