A/N: This was written for Camilla Monet's Strange Pairings Challenge. My pairing was James/Sirius and my prompt was wings.
Disclaimer: Anything you recognize belongs to JKR. Title credit belongs to the Green Day song.
Restless Heart Syndrome
From the second he arrives in Godric's Hollow Sirius Black knows something is wrong. The moment his eyes rest on what remains of Lily and James' cottage – with its shattered windows, and partially caved in roof – his heart contracts painfully. He feels numb from head to foot, but forces himself to take one step and then another, bringing him closer and closer to the small house.
The front door is battered, chunks of wood missing, and dangling from its hinges; he pushes it roughly aside and slips inside. The reasonable part of his mind urges him to light his wand, but his gut screams at him not to. Nothing feels real; it's as if he is seeing the world through a screen, his vision blurred and unreliable. He can almost convince himself it's all just a bad nightmare, and that this isn't real after all. But the second he lights his wand and the room is doused in its glow, it will make everything clear – it will make everything real.
He's been here more times than he can count; he could walk these rooms, these halls, with his eyes closed. He pulls a shaky breath into his lungs and forces his legs to move him forward. Maybe they got out, he tells himself, maybe they got out in time. He wants to believe, he tries to believe, but he can't get away from the sinking feeling in his gut that tells him otherwise.
Only the moonlight filtering through the open door lights his way, but his eyes have already begun to adjust to the dimness by the time he reaches the stairs. He looks up toward the second floor, and his stomach lurches; everything within him is screaming that everything is wrong. He hesitates, but then turns away and walks into a room off the hallway. The first floor, first, he thinks.
He freezes the moment he steps through the doorway. There is a shape crumpled on the floor a few feet in front of him, and he doesn't need any extra light to recognize what it is – or who it is. James.
James. James. James.
It's like the ground has disappeared from under him, like the world has been flipped on its side, and suddenly his legs are too week to hold him upright. He falls to his knees where he stands, his breath whooshing from his lungs. His knees slam roughly against the floor of the cottage, but he's beyond noticing the pain coursing through his legs.
His heart is beating frantically – fast, much too fast; the beats blur together, almost as if they don't even exist, and for a second he'd swear he's flat lining.
But a gasp of a breath passes through his lips, and he feels like his head is spinning, but suddenly, everything is clear. He feels something building up inside him, centered in his chest – anger, hate, heartbreak, loss, and love all mixed into one – and it makes him feel so alive that he knows he can't possibly be dying.
He looks down at James; thin wisps of moonlight filter through the broken window, lying like a caressing hand against his pale face. Sirius scoots himself closer to James and reaches a hand down to brush his charcoal black hair out of his eyes. His hair is as messy as ever, Sirius notices, with another pang to his heart, and he isn't sure if he wants to laugh or cry. He runs his fingers through James' hair, knotting them in the black strands.
Tears, one by one, run down his cheeks, but Sirius having let loose his hand from James' hair, trailing the tips of his fingers along James' cheek, doesn't notice. He traces the outline of his face, every curve and every line, as if trying to commit every detail to memory. Sirius takes a ragged breath, as his fingers brush across James' lips.
The tears are flowing faster now, his breathing unsteady. He closes his eyes and pulls James into his lap, holding him tightly in his arms. After a while, Sirius leans down and presses his lips to James', hesitantly, almost as if he is expecting a rebuff at any moment. "I love you," he whispers against his lips, finally saying the words that he – brave, reckless Sirius Black – had always been too afraid to ever say.
He lifts his head and looks at James, and he can almost imagine him with great wings, as dark as the infinite blackness of his hair, attached to his back carrying him up and up, away from this world. Up with the angels, and there is nothing that Sirius Black or anyone else can do to change it.
A/N: I had no idea of how to use the prompt, so hopefully it doesn't seem to awkward. I'd love to know what you thought (good or bad), so leave a review. =]