Summary: They construct a timeline of memories, and Tonks gets a shock. RLNT fluff. AU, but only because I let Remus and Tonks live.
A/N: I wrote this a very, very long time ago. It's time to set it free. :P
They're sitting on the couch; his legs are stretched out in front of him, but she is curled up at his side. His arm is around her and she leans into him, unable to stay away from his warmth. These lazy evenings together have become a habit that they are quite unwilling – and unmotivated – to break. The old photo album lays open on his lap and she watches his soft brown eyes take in each snapshot. Each photograph tells a memory, a thousand memories.
Teddy at his first birthday party, clumsily opening a toy broom with the help of his smiling father.
Tonks hugging Ginny, who wears the bright yellow Quidditch robes of the Holyhead Harpies.
Remus, Harry, and Teddy, waving in front of a newly bought house...
But although Tonks is filled with the memories of these pictures, they also stir other memories that were never captured on film. Memories from before marriage and happy endings, but quite joyful at any rate. They are the very distinct, very powerful memories of falling in love.
Remus turns the page of the photo album, but Tonks only glances at it before turning to her husband."Remember how we met?" she asks suddenly, and he laughs in response, pure and sincere. She wants to hold onto the sound forever.
"Of course," he answers sweetly. "You tripped on the stairs. I caught you."
"Yeah, that's right... well, I didn't love you then, you know." she says matter-of-factly, and she lets the sentence hang in the air. She watches his face turn into an expression of bemused surprise. She holds back a smile. "It wasn't love at first sight," she continues seriously. "I just liked you."
He raises an eyebrow and grins. "It wasn't love at first sight for me, either. I just liked you, too."
She presses on. "And remember when Sirius tried to get us to kiss under the mistletoe, and I hexed him because he was being such a snarky prat about it?"
"He cursed your name for a week after that," nods Remus.
"Well, I didn't love you then, either. I just liked you. A lot."
"I liked you a lot as well." He can barely keep the laughter out of his voice, and there's a spark in his eyes that tells all. This is her game and he knows it, and he doesn't care if there's a point to it or not. He just plays along.
"And remember when I slaughtered you at wizard chess?"
"Yes, Sirius was over the moon about someone finally beating me...of course, I never did tell him that Ron had beat me months prior to that. You can imagine the torment I would have had to suffer through."
"Well, anyway, that night...that's when I knew I loved you."
There's a pause.
"When you beat me?" asks Remus incredulously. "I mean, certainly there's a more – er - romantic moment than that?"
"Well, I won and you acted so...gentlemanly about it. 'Good game, Nymphadora' you said, and even though I hated my name, I thought that it almost sounded nice when you said it. And then you gave me that damn irresistible smile of yours, and I was – what's the phrase...weak at the knees? And that's how I knew."
Remus laughs. "You're always weak at the knees. Tripping all over yourself..."
"Shut it, you."
Remus grins smugly at her. His eyes blaze with a mischievous glint. "Well, well, well. This is a nice surprise."
"I guess I had always just assumed that you fell in love with me first."
Tonks is shocked. "What? I did!" she exclaims, sounding confused. "I know I did."
Remus shakes his head. "No, you are sadly mistaken, Dora. I pushed my feelings away for a long time, but I always knew deep down, and I remember exactly when I realized it. And as it turns out, I knew I loved you about two weeks before you knew you loved me."
"When?" she questions, curious and skeptical.
Remus grins again. "Well, it was few weeks after Christmas, but before our 'infamous' chess match. We were both keeping Sirius company at Headquarters. I had been in the kitchen and then I walked into the sitting room, where you were laying on the sofa. You must have heard me come in, because you turned slightly and gave me a small wave and - I'll never be quite sure how it happened – but somehow, you toppled off the couch."
Tonks frowns. "I remember that. So embarrassing...I can't believe you'd choose that moment."
"Well, I guess I win. I loved you first." he says with a self-satisfied smile.
"Like hell you win. We wouldn't have gotten together if it wasn't for me."
"Very true." concedes Remus fairly. "And I must admit, I'm very glad you're the most stubborn, incorrigible witch in the world."
"And I'm glad you stopped being such an idiot."
Remus laughs and kisses her cheek. "Me too."
A/N: In my mind, they live, dammit! Reviews are love. :)