Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended
Summary: Sirius/Remus pre-slash. The boys find out they have something unexpected in common; set during their fifth year.
Author's Note: Written for Calliope's birthday. Inspired by S/R backstory for the Seen Unforeseen RPG, but can also stand alone. You don't need to know anything about the game to read and understand this.
"You would think," Remus told his reflection a bit crossly, "that after admitting I'm a werewolf, that would be it for the Big Secret Department."
His reflection said nothing, just raised a knowing eyebrow in response. Remus sighed. Wasn't it enough that he was already the scourge of civilisation for being a werewolf? Did he have to be a gay werewolf, too?
He had known quite early on where his preferences lay, but in the light of keeping the larger secret of his lycanthropy, it seemed almost a non-issue. He was never going to be able to fully reveal who he was, anyway. He was used to keeping to himself, watching others from a distance and sticking to his books. He had fully intended to spend his precarious existence at Hogwarts the same way.
But he hadn't expected his dormmates to figure it out, and once they did, suddenly this other issue became the secret to keep. On the one hand, given how calmly they'd accepted the fact that he could tear them to ribbons once a month, it seemed they might not bat so much as an eyelash to hear he liked boys. On the other hand, they might all worry that he liked them, which, no matter how tolerant they were of others, usually sent most teenage boys running at the thought of it being directed at them directly.
At the moment, it wasn't really true, although James and Sirius were both quite handsome, from an objective viewpoint. He had tried hard to keep things light with his dormmates, knowing it could make things unliveable if he were to fall in unrequited love with one of them, especially given they'd just started transforming with him recently and were thus seeing even more of each other. However, he had allowed himself a bit of a crush on a Ravenclaw boy from their Herbology class, even though no one knew it but him.
The problem was, Sirius had been teasing him at dinner that night for never showing any interest in girls, telling him he needed to give up his books and start 'getting out there'. Not that Sirius himself had been 'out there' as far as Remus knew, aside from flirting badly with any girl who looked his way. But that wasn't the same as going on a date, or even asking a girl out, neither of which had Sirius done - unless you counted the outrageous pickup lines he used periodically, which were always treated like the insincere jokes they seemed to be. James had managed a few dates here and there, although nothing major, and Peter, although he hadn't succeeded yet, had confessed interest in several girls and had bravely asked a few to join him for Hogsmeade weekends or Quidditch games. He and James had received much good-natured ribbing from the others for their choices and their attempts and now, it seemed, it was Remus' turn.
He had tried to dismiss it, just saying he didn't think he would find anyone and trying to imply he was blaming his lycanthropy without revealing his condition to the entire Great Hall. But Sirius had pushed and pushed until Remus had finally cut the conversation short and left dinner early.
So here he was, alone in their dormitory, pointing an accusing finger at his reflection and wondering just what else in his life would make him a social pariah. After another fruitless glare, he gave up and pulled out his Charms homework; he spread the assignment out on his bed, and tried to concentrate on that instead.
"Moony?" The dormitory door creaked open.
Remus looked up and sighed. "Yeah, I'm in here, Sirius."
Sirius came in and stood at the foot of Remus' bed, looking uncharacteristically solemn. "Look, I just wanted to say ... I'm sorry."
Remus cocked an eyebrow. "Did James put you up to this?"
"No!" Sirius scowled. "And if that's what you think, then I'll just go-"
"No, wait." Remus leaned forward as if to grab Sirius' arm, even though he couldn't quite reach. "I'm - I'm sorry, too. I shouldn't have gotten so angry."
A ghost of Sirius' usual grin appeared, and he hoisted himself up onto Remus' bed without asking. "Nah, I shouldn't have been so pushy. It's just that you never talk about any girls, not like the others. Thought maybe you were just hiding something, like you did with the moon thing, and that I could coax it out of you."
Remus felt like he was standing outside himself, much like he did the day his friends had cornered him about his lycanthropy. Did Sirius already suspect? "What did you think I was hiding?" he managed.
Sirius shrugged, picking idly at the bedspread. "A wife and three kids?" He looked up. "I dunno, Moony. Maybe you had a crush on Professor McGonagall and just didn't want to admit it to anyone. If I knew, I wouldn't have asked you about it, would I?"
He shook his head, unable to keep from smiling slightly at the notion. "No. It's definitely not Professor McGonagall."
Sirius' eyebrows went up. "Does this mean you do have a crush on someone? Who--?" He caught himself. "Dammit. I guess I can't ask you anymore about that, can I?" He took on a slightly pleading expression. "Come on, Moony. It's just us here. No one else. I swear I won't tell anyone - I haven't told anyone about you being a werewolf, have I?"
"What about you?" Remus challenged, fighting for time. "You flirt with every girl over thirteen, but you've never asked one out and even the flirting just seems to be for fun more than anything. Isn't there any girl you like?"
It was Sirius' turn to shake his head. "I-" He paused, giving a quick look around the room as if to make sure they were alone. "I don't like girls," he finally admitted, hunching over like a puppy about to be scolded.
Remus stared. "You don't like ... as in, you like boys?"
Sirius nodded dumbly. "Feel free to run off screaming now," he mumbled.
"Like I'm really in a position to judge someone else for something they can't control," Remus snorted, earning a weak, wary grin from Sirius. Then he bit his lip for a moment, hesitating. "I don't like girls either," he confessed.
The other boy's jaw dropped. "Oh. I ... oh." A chagrined look crossed his face. "Well, I feel like an even bigger prat now. You'd think I'd have recognised it in someone else."
"So, why do you flirt with girls so much if you don't like them?"
Sirius shrugged. "'Cos it's fun. It keeps the others off my case and there's no harm in it."
"So, is there any boy you like?" Remus ventured, feeling more than a little disbelieving at the turn the conversation had taken.
"No," Sirius answered shortly.
Remus had the distinct impression he was lying, but kept his silence. It didn't seem to be him, in any case, or Sirius would likely not have been as forthcoming as he had been, and that's all that really mattered at the moment.
"I like Reuben van der Waal," he offered, feeling like he owed Sirius something for the phenomenal gift of confession earlier.
"The Ravenclaw?" Sirius eyebrows went up again as he laughed. "Well, you've got good taste, Moony. Nice dark hair on that one."
"If you tell anyone, though, I'll throttle you with my bare hands," Remus warned.
Sirius held his hands up in mock-surrender. "Promise. Not even Prongs or Wormtail, I swear."
Remus relaxed marginally. "Better not."
Sirius grinned as he gave Remus a friendly punch on the arm. "Who'd have guessed it - two poofs in the same Gryffindor class?"
"A poof and a were-poof, you mean," he responded, a bit sourly.
The other boy shrugged good-naturedly. "Yeah, well, no one knows about that, and almost no one else knows about the boy thing, so..." he trailed off. "Eh."
"Almost?" Remus raised an eyebrow.
Sirius shrugged again, less light-heartedly this time. "James knows about me," he said, without elaboration.
Remus wondered how that conversation had gone, but sensed Sirius didn't want to talk about it. They still seemed to be friends, so James couldn't be too homophobic, but he made a mental note to shield this side of himself from James until he could better determine the other boy's views.
"Well, then," he said, when the silence stretched on a bit too long.
Sirius grinned. "Yeah, well. Guess I'd better let you get back to your precious books." He hopped off the bed as casually as if they'd been discussing the weather. "See you downstairs in a bit."
"Yeah, okay, I'll see you." Remus watched him go, then turned back to his homework with a still-stunned shake of his head. He would never have thought it of Sirius in a million years if he hadn't just confessed it directly. It was comforting, somehow, though, that even if they couldn't be public about it, to know someone else was dealing with the same issues he was. All his life he'd been alone with his troubles. Sirius had always been a little closer to James than to him, but now he felt a new bond forming between himself and Sirius, a different sort of solidarity.
Smiling, he bent to his studies.
I confess, feedback is always greatly appreciated. I accept concrit as well as positive remarks.
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