Title: Dreams

Author: tarotgal

Fandom: Harry Potter

Rating: R (NC-17?)

Warnings: slash, lots of angst, sex... sort of ;-)

Pairing: Sirius/Remus

Spoilers: This is set at the end of Goblet of Fire

Disclaimer: Yeah. I'm not J.K.Rowling. Big surprise, isn't it? I get nothing for this. It's just play.

Summary: I wonder if you care. I wonder if you still remember. Once upon a time in your wildest dreams

Notes: Inspired by the sf weekly hatching week #3. Lines from 'Your Wildest Dreams' performed by the Moody Blues have been paraphrased here and there, and the spirit of the song is reflected in the fic.





     Sirius woke from the dream, panting, sweating. His hands gripped the sheet beneath him in fists so hard his knuckles were white. His heart beat so loudly he was almost certain it could have woken the neighbors, let alone his bed partner. But Remus remained sound asleep at his right side, snoring loudly.


     Dreadful, horrifying nightmares were not a new experience to Sirius Black. He had hoped, after leaving Azkaban, that they might have stopped. But they hadn't. He had hoped, after moving in with Remus, that they at least might have slowed down. But they hadn't. If anything, they got worse. More intense. More terrible. More depraved. And this particular one was no exception.


     He sat up, rubbing his hand against the back of his neck and wincing. His head hurt. It was possible he was getting sick, but he hoped very much that he was not. He wasn't sure he could handle that just now. He wasn't sure he could handle this dream right now, either. At first the dreams had just been of horrible things. Bad memories. Bad situations. But now the dreams were just of his death. He'd seen and felt himself die a hundred times now in a hundred different ways.


     "Remus?" he whispered, not wanting to be alone with his fears. Remus did not stir. Sirius was hunched over, dripping with sweat, trembling as the cold night air struck his damp skin. He put a hand on Remus' shoulder, shaking gently. "Rem? I need you." Remus snuffled and shook his head, snuggling into the pillow to rid himself of the disturbance. "Don't blame you," Sirius said, watching his tired lover. "I wouldn't want to be up at this time of night either."


     He crossed his arms over his chest, hugging them to his body. Remus' cabin was cold, without any sort of heat to it that did not come from the fireplace or candles here and there. At it wasn't safe to have either lit while they were sleep. Thus it was dark, with the moonlight seeping through the drapes and casting shadows on the far walls. The cabin was small, but seemed too large in the middle of the night. Shadows reminded him of Dementors, and Dementors reminded him of dreams. Sirius shivered and sniffled and pulled the blanket up over his chest, holding it up over his shoulders as a chill worked its way through his body.


     He looked down again, scooting a little closer. "Remus?" he whispered again. "Moony? Wake up?" Remus did not. Sirius had been pretty sure he wouldn't. He wanted Remus to have a good sleep. It wasn't as though these dreams were any new, startling development. And he certainly felt better now that he was awake and knew Remus was safe beside him should anything happen. Remus would wake and protect him if it came to that. But at the same time, Sirius didn't want to be the only one awake now. He wanted Remus to hold him and stroke his hair and tell him it was only a dream. Because it hadn't felt like only a dream. It had felt real. It had been strong and seizing. It had been firm and frightening. It had been wild and willful, just like him. It was hard enough to face himself. He didn't want to face it alone.


     Sirius took a deep breath and reached over, beneath the blankets, to shake Remus' shoulder again. "Remus?" he said normally, above a whisper. "Can you wake up for a couple of minutes?" His hand did not cease its shaking until Remus' eyes fluttered open and he looked up at the shivering, shuddering, sniffling, sweating Sirius.


     Remus sat up at once, putting a hand to Sirius' forehead. "Are you coming down sick?" he asked, concernedly.


     Sirius shook his head. He wished he could blame the bad dream on a fever, but such was not the case. With a soft whimper and a bitten bottom lip, Sirius whispered, "No."


     Remus took a moment to let his eyes adjust to the darkness, his dark pupils large in his amber eyes. His hand slid from forehead to cheek. "You had another bad dream, then?" he asked.


     Sirius nodded with another whimper. "It was awful." He rubbed a hand at his face, over his eyes and nose and mouth. "I'm sorry to wake you. I know you need your sleep."


     Remus coughed and shook his head. "No, it's all right. I'm feeling better," he lied through his teeth as he propped up the pillows and leaned back against them and the headboard. He held an arm out and Sirius went to him, curling up against Remus and snuggling as close as he could get.


     Once Sirius had settled in, and Remus had pulled the blankets up to cover them both as best he could, he gave Sirius' head a kiss. The tangled black hair was damp, as were the neck, chest, and pits of Sirius' t-shirt. His heart and breath were racing and he trembled against Remus. Remus put a comforting arm around him, holding him tightly, and set his cheek against the top of Sirius' head. Sirius sniffled, rubbing his face into Remus' nightshirt. "It's all right," Remus whispered soothingly. "Nothing's going to hurt you while I'm here. No one can find you here. It was all just a bad dream."


     "I know," Sirius replied with a shiver. Remus hugged him tighter beneath the blankets. "It just seemed so real. So painful. And in those dreams..."


     Remus nodded, his cheek rubbing back and forth against Sirius' head as he did so. "In your dreams I'm already dead," Remus finished for him. Sirius whimpered again and closed his eyes tightly. His hand grabbed onto Remus' shirt for security. "Well, I'm not, as you can well see," Remus said, rubbing a hand slowly up and down Sirius' back. "And you're all right now. Safe in bed with me with loads of charms protecting this cabin and our wands right at hand. There's nothing to be worried about now. Just forget your nightmare and rest here with me."


     Sirius sniffled and nodded weakly in agreement. He knew it had been silly to let the nightmare get to him like this. He had been through hundreds, after all, with each one more terrifying than the one before it. And even when he woke, finding Remus safe beside him, the fear in his heart did not completely leave. Voldemort was back and gathering support. He remembered well what life had been like during the first rising. And in his dreams he saw how much worse the second rising could be. He had spent half his life in prison because of it and he dared not think of what could happen this time. He had spent two years running and living in caves waiting for the time when it would be safe to go back to Remus, but not wanting to draw harm his way. But he didn't think he could take being separated from Remus again. Not so soon after they'd found each other again.


     "Are you certain you aren't getting sick?" Remus asked, full of suspicion based on how Sirius sounded and felt. Though his head had been quite cool to the touch apart from being damp.


     "Not sick," Sirius replied, half wishing that he had not awakened Remus. Remus was a worrier and always had been. He felt fine, apart from the fear and the memories, as those were things much more difficult to shake than a head cold. But he felt so much better in Remus' arms, hearing Remus' voice. So long he had gone without the touch, the presence, the smell of his lover. So long he had dreamed of being back like this again. And for that he was glad he woke Remus.


     The seconds and minutes ticked by in near silence, both men wide awake and thinking their own terrible thoughts about the future and the past. The only sounds were of sniffles and Remus' soft, soothing words "Shhh" and "Hush" and an occasional "It's all right. You're safe now." Remus did not loosen his hold on Sirius one bit, wanting the man to know he was being looked after now and that he could relax. Slowly, very slowly, Sirius did indeed relax. His breathing slowed, his heartbeat returned to normal, and his grip on Remus became less desperate and urgent.


     After a while, he lifted his head, causing Remus to lift his as well. He looked up, his pale eyes soft and full of gratitude. "Thank you, Rem," he whispered.


     Remus lowered his head and placed a kiss upon Sirius' lips in reply. Then he took a deep breath and spoke, "Do you want to... oh hang on..." No sooner had he started to speak when he was forced to stop. He held a hand up to his face, half a foot away. He sucked in a deep breath, and jerked forward. "huhShehhh! hahChhhh! ihhChuhhh! hehShuhhh!" He sniffed and wiped his hand on a blanket. "Sorry," he whispered. "Now as I was saying, if you want to talk about it, I'm here to listen."


     Sirius closed his eyes, resting his head against Remus' chest. "I know, but I don't." He never did. At least, not the details. It was hard enough enduring the dream the first time around. He couldn't imagine going through it all again in words, or frightening Remus with all the particulars. Sometimes he claimed he forgot the dreams and was left with only the fear they inspired, but that wasn't true. He could remember every second of them, as though they were etched into his mind. He told Remus they had to do with his death. He told Remus that the scariest part was that he was without Remus. He told Remus that the dreams were far scarier than just that. But that was all he told Remus.


     "How about you tell me yours?" Sirius asked hopefully. They had learned that the easiest way of ridding the dreams' holds on Sirius were to replace the thoughts with other things. And those other things were usually Remus' own dreams.


     "Didn't have one tonight," Remus said, shaking his head, then rubbing his hand at his nose. "At least not one I can remember," he confessed. He felt Sirius tense up in his arms, and added quickly, "But I can tell you another one of my dreams. One of my fantasies." Sirius was silent, thinking over this proposition. "About us," Remus said. He stroked Sirius' stubbly cheek with the back of his fingers. "Would you like that?"


     Sirius nodded, his cheek now the thing that was moving against Remus' stationary hand.


     Remus smiled and snuggled him close. "All right then. It's one of those dreams I've had since we first got together." By the way Sirius leaned into him and the soft sound that accompanied his sigh, Remus could tell this one would indeed suffice. First, however, he pulled out his wand and used lumos to give the room some light. Sirius squinted, clapping a hand over his eyes at the sudden brightness. By the wandlight, Remus located his box of tissues, which had migrated down the bed and to the side. He pulled out a few, rubbing at his nose, then extinguished his wand. Sirius relaxed against him again. "You won't mind if I sneeze during the telling, I hope?"


     Sirius shook his head. At this point, anything and everything Remus was saying felt like a comfort to him. Snuggled beside Remus, the room didn't seem so cold and dark. He was far from forgetting what he'd woken from, however. He only hoped Remus' story could do that much.


     "All right then," Remus said softly, and began:


     I walk in, finding you sprawled upon the bed, surrounded by the most luxurious fabrics and softest pillows. They are stimulating to the touch, but you are even more-so. Your skin is warm, as though you were sitting in front of the fire that burns over on the other side of the room. I can hear it crackling and hissing. But I can hear your breath better. Deep breaths, hungry for air, excited to see me. Your breath, like your words, changes as you smile, and you do smile to see me. As though I'm the most beautiful thing you could possibly imagine seeing--


     You are, Remus.


     I know, Padfoot. But only to you.


     I highly doubt that, but this your fantasy.


     That's right. It is. So let me tell it.


     --You beckon for me to come over, but I hang there in the doorway for a moment, taking in the sights, the smells, the sounds. I want to cherish this moment and all the rest that are to follow. I want to make them special. I want to make this special. You're lying on your stomach, stretched out on top of the blankets, elbows bent and propping you up so you can look straight up at me. You're still smiling, and it's as though you know what I'm thinking without me having to tell you. You pat the bed beside you gently in invitation, making a special place there just for me. So I walk in--


     You didn't close and lock the door behind you.


     Yes, I know that. But this is a fantasy. No one's going to walk in on us unless I've a sudden kink for that. And that's not this particular fantasy so be at ease. This might be one of my favorites, but it's not my kinkiest. Now don't interrupt. It's hard enough feeling sick and tired and all to tell you my most intimate fantasies without you interrupting.


     Sorry. Won't happen again. Please carry on.


     --I shed my clothes as I walk across the room. First my shirt, which gets dropped to the side without a care. I kick my shoes and socks off, the trail of clothing items growing behind me as I get nearer to you. Then I step out of my slacks as I walk, ever smooth and suave, without breaking my stride. And last my pants, slipped down over my erection with a little difficulty but the mistake is so minimal you don't notice. All you notice is me, and I'm not minimal. I'm large, and eager, and willing, and longing for you. Your mere presence is enough to turn me on. I barely have to be with you a second and I'm ready and begging for it.


     I climb onto the bed and stretch out beside you, my body terribly close but just a smidge away from touching. I don't want to touch. Not just yet. I want to tease you first. Besides, you're not undressed yet, only I am. You're still in your bright white T-shirt and faded, ripped blue jeans. The way I lay down was opposite you. So that my feet are at your head and my head is by your feet--


     I'm sorry, but why are you laughing at this?


     Oh, Rem. Don't get self conscious on me. It's just... this is your fantasy and you've positioned yourself and your sensitive nose right by my big smelly feet?


     Well they don't smell in my fantasy. Or maybe I've got a cold then too and can't smell them. Either way, you promised not to interrupt.


     Right. I did. Sorry again. I'm really enjoying this. Please go on.


     Promise no more laughing?


     I promise.


     All right.


     I said I promise.


     I know. I just feel a sneeze coming on. Want to wait for it before I start talking again. Quick, remember where I stopped, just in case.


     With your head by my big smelly feet. I'll remember that.


     Not... smell... smelly-hihShuhhhh! hahhChuhhh! hihChehhh! Sniff! ihhh... one more... ehhh... com-coming... heh-ehhhKShuhhh!


     You all right now?


     Yeah. You?


     Getting better by the minute. Continue when you're ready.


     --Slowly I pull your socks off, and then run my hand up the leg of your pants until there's not enough room for my arm to fit through the cuff. I can feel your powerful calf, and I run my hand over it several times, taking in your warmth, making you tingle. Then I slide my hand out and reach up, grabbing the waistband of your jeans and pulling them down in one sharp, forceful tug. They slide right down, and I pull them to your knees, then I stop. My hands cannot resist the touch of your arse. So round and fuzzy and hard. You clench your cheeks as my hands squeeze them in anticipation. Then I dip my head down and work my tongue up from the bottom all the way to your back in a wet, alluring trail--


     ahhChuhhh! hehChihhh! hehShhhh! Sniff! Sniff! Doe, doe I've got the tissues right here. Just give be a bidute or two to blow by... by dose. Heh... or-heh- or sdeeze agaid- ihhh-hehSHHH! uhhShhhhh! hehChushhhhh! Sniff!


     Rem, if you're feeling too sick, you can stop.


     No, I can do this. It's just a little cold id by, sniff, in my nose. I don't mind if you don't.


     I told you before I didn't mind.


     You didn't actually say it before...


     Well I'm saying it now. And I don't mind.


     Well okay then.


     --I slip my hands up beneath your T-shirt. It's soft against the back of my hands, and your skin is soft against my palms. I dig in, massaging, rubbing in firm strokes against the small of your back. Then I scoot up, sitting on your thighs, and then your bare arse, my hands reaching up all the way to your shoulders beneath your shirt, rubbing hard but carefully. I am encouraged by the sounds you make. Light groans, tiny snorts, deep sighs. My legs spread slowly, and you're distracted. My knees slip onto the bed on either side of you, my lower legs squeezing against you hips, my thighs squeezing your arse. When I lean forward, you can feel my erection pressing into your arse and lower back.


     I push your shirt up, and cover your back with small kisses. You tense happily at the sensations and beg me to undress you. But I don't want to. I want to take you as you are. I want to have you now and cannot wait. You beg me to turn you over and pull you, ready you. But I tell you there are better ways of getting ready that don't include me touching... you--


     HEHShhhh! ihhhChuhhh! hehShuhhhh! Ugh... my nose just keeps tickling... damn, where was I?


     You were, ah, getting me ready.


     You sure you want me to go into it all? I know with my cold it's been a little while since we...


     I'd be lying if I said you weren't turning me on.


     So I feel. Are you sure, then? I can stop if you...


     Don't stop. Merlin, Remus. Don't you dare stop. And feel some more.




     Now you're the one laughing. You laughing at me?


     Laughing at all of this. All I was trying to do was distract you from your bad dream.


     Don't remind me, please. I'd almost forgotten.


     And instead now I've got you all horny and I'll too weak to fuck or be fucked.


     This is better than a quick fuck, Remus. This is me getting to see inside your head. Me getting a glimpse of one of your wildest dreams. This is more intimate, more intense. I'll come without you having to touch me if you just keep talking.




     Well, maybe I'll need a little touching, but if you don't mind...


     Why ever would I? How's this for a touch?


     Remus... oh, my Remus... yes...


     --I sink my teeth into your side, and you yelp and jump with surprise, but do not struggle. You know I'm simply claiming you. I'm making you mine completely before I take you over physically. My hands stroke your sides while my tongue traces indistinguishable patterns all along your back. I nibble and nip here and there, as I slide down your body, resting on your lower legs again so I can taste your arse again. I rub my cheeks against yours, all the while my hands touching here and there, making sure to cover every bit of skin they possibly can. They come dangerously close to sneaking beneath your thighs to touch your cock, but they hold back. Instead they spread your legs just a little and reach down in-between, tickling your balls ever so gently. A sharp, pleased gasp tells me all I need to know. I shove your legs back together, give you a moment to readjust yourself beneath your body as I lube myself up.


     Then I slip inside with just a bit of effort and all the strength my hips have to offer. You're as tight as I like you, enough room for me to move in and out easily, but snug around my cock with such a soothing heat. You don't resist me, but you grunt as I pump into you, gritting your teeth, grabbing at the blankets beneath you. I ask if you're all right, if you want me to stop.


     You beg me to continue, so I do. When I push in all the way, and lean forward all the way, I can reach your ear with my tongue. I nibble just beneath it, then tug at your earlobe where a small stud resides. I work it with my tongue, your earlobe more sensitive to my touch. I snuffle kisses against your neck, pushing your hair away but burying my face into it, taking in your smell and the feel of the hair tickling my face. But that's only when I plunge myself in as deep as I will go. My hands hold myself up on the bed as my hips begin to rock back and forth with a steady rhythm. And my pelvis thrusts almost on its own.


     You groan in pleasure, letting me know with sounds and breathing how close you are. I want us to be in synch. I want to feel you tense around me as I shoot. I want to share your orgasm with you and make you share mine with me. And I know it won't take much more to bring us both to that point. I continue to thrust.


     Then I start to talk. I tell you that you're my lover, my bitch, my mate. I tell you that I won't let anyone else ever touch you. I tell you I'll keep you safe and give you what you want, what you need. I tell you you're perfect. You're handsome. You're brilliant. I tell you you're mine. Because you are. You're all those things and more. But right now. You're all mine.


     And all the while I'm thrusting. In and out. In and out. And you're rocking beneath me as much as you can, which is only a little. You want me in more, and with each thrust I seem to get deeper. Deeper. Harder. Faster. Stronger. We're caught together, linked, with me controlling you and you begging for release. And then... then we... we--

     Aw, shite! hehChihhh! hahChuhhh! Schuhhh! Sniff! Sniff... KChuhhh! huhShuhhh! hehShhhh! ihhhKshhhh! Sniff! Sniiiiff! Sorry I ruined the moment.


     Ahhh... It's okay. I could... figure that much out anyway. Hand me a couple of those tissues, would you?


     --And when we're done, and cleaned off, you crawl into my arms, and I stroke you while you fall asleep. And you have nothing but good dreams when you're sleeping there with me.


     Remus sighed, rubbing at his nose. "That's it. That's the end. So what'd you think?" Still a bit breathless, Sirius managed a pleased but incoherent mumble. Remus helped clean Sirius off, then snuggled him close in his arms. "Yeah. That was one of my favorite simple fantasies to wank to. I'll have to remember to share the one about drawing things in chocolate sauce all over our bodies, you covering my scars and me licking it all off you slowly..."


     "Rem, are you trying to kill me?"


     Remus chuckled and shook his head. "Sorry. Are you all right?"


     He nodded. "How about you. How's your nose?" He reached up and stroked a finger, then two, down the bridge of his nose a few times.


     With a sigh, Remus shrugged. "Feeling pretty sneezey still I suppose. I just can't seem to shake this cold. It's been days and it's still hanging on, making my nose tickle."


     Sirius set his head against Remus' shoulder and chest, pulling the blankets around them both more tightly. "I shouldn't have woken you up. You needed your rest tonight."


     "You needed me," Remus replied simply. "I'm happy to help where I can. Did I help?"


     A wide grin spread across Sirius' face and he gave a deep, shaking, pleased sigh. "Oh yes. More than you can imagine."


     "Then it was worth missing a little sleep over. I'll just try to sleep in a little to make up for it." Remus' body was controlled by the pull of the moon. But his daily life was controlled by the never-ending cycle of night and day. When the sun rose, he found himself waking as well. When the sun set, his body felt tired and longed for sleep. Even with a cold upon him, he found it difficult to sleep when the dawn was pushing at him to get up. That very day he had been roused by the warmth of the sun upon his face, and sat at the kitchen table with the paper and his morning tea, wanting nothing more than to go back to sleep but unable to do so. He had thought briefly of putting something in his tea to make him sleep longer, but in the end, he had work to do and stayed up. He hoped he might be able to defy the odds this time and sleep in later this upcoming morning.


     Sirius could hear his breathing slow and deepen. And while he suddenly felt alone again, it wasn't at all like before. Not with Remus' arm around him, not with the memories of the dream still running wild in his head. But he wondered... and he dared. "Remus, are you asleep?" he whispered as softly as his deep, rough voice would let him.


     There was a light chuckle. "No, Sirius. I'm... not." And his nose seemed to want to prove this. It tickled and he turned his head quickly so as not to sneeze on Sirius. "hahIhshhh! hehShhhh! huhChuhh! Sniff! hehIHHShhh! ihhShuhhh! Sniff!" He pulled another tissue from the box and gave his nose a one-handed blow. With a sigh, he finished, "Not asleep. I was just thinking."


     "Oh," Sirius replied. "I was thinking, too. About your story." Remus nodded, waiting for him to continue. "Do you really think of me like that when you have a wank?"


     Remus was silent for a few moments, his eyes closed. Sirius had the impression that Remus wished he hadn't been awake to hear that question. "That's a little personal," Remus said timidly. Even though he still held Sirius against him, it seemed as though he pulled back a bit, wanting to break away.


     Talk about their personal fantasies and desires had once never been that personal. Once they shared everything. Once there was nothing they couldn't say to each other. But that time was long gone. And while they'd never discussed the boundaries of their renewed relationship, Sirius realized that this was where one of them now lay. "Sorry," he whispered. "I just thought... well... I wondered if that was really a fantasy about me or if it was someone else..."


     "It was you," said Remus quickly, before Sirius could get the wrong impression about it. Then, feeling that if he said that much, he might as well say the rest. He was already awake and not falling back to sleep any time soon, sick or not. Might as well get it all out while he could. "It's always you, Sirius. I can't... I can't come unless I think of you. Not now. Not ever."


     "Oh," said Sirius, sounding a bit shocked. Then his eyes opened wider as he understood just what Remus was trying to tell him. "Oh!"


     Remus nodded and plucked another tissue from the box, putting his effort into wiping and blowing his nose so he didn't have to reply to that. "hih..." He rubbed at his nose and tensed up as he felt the sneeze coming on. "hehhAhshhh! hahShuhhh!" Then went right back to blowing his nose.


     Sirius pulled back a little, giving Remus room, both to blow his nose and to think over what he'd just admitted. Their reunification a few weeks ago had been a difficult one for both of them. Twelve years in Azkaban, and then two more years apart when Sirius was on the run. There was an expected amount of caution and mistrust that went along with the forgiveness and longing. But in the end, Remus had welcomed him back to bed, and Sirius had accepted the offer. They had tried to take it slow. But fourteen years of missing each other had culminated in more hot and heavy sex than either had anticipated.


     Sirius took in a deep breath, letting it out slowly. The full weight of Remus' words was still upon him, and he had not the slightest idea of what to do about it. "You know over the years I had a long time to think about you, Remus. When I was on the run, and living in caves. We saw each other for such a brief time that night in the shack. And I know you said you forgave me, and I you. But that hug... your touch. I couldn't get it out of my mind. I thought about you all the time, Remus."


     "I know," Remus breathed. They had talked about this many times already. They had said their apologies and confessed their feelings a million times over, it seemed.


     "I'd wonder where you were. Wonder if you still cared about me the way you once did. Wonder if you thought about me."


     Remus pulled Sirius close again, hugging the man tightly around the shoulders. "Of course I did. Every day, then and when you were Azkaban. It was..."


     "I understand," Sirius sighed. Remus bent his head down and narrowed his eyes at him. "At least, I think I do. Every time you had to... you had to think of me. Every time you were with someone else."


     Remus shuddered and closed his eyes. "I thought you'd betrayed me. I thought you'd betrayed Lily and James and killed Peter. And still I thought of you. Every single time. You were my mate. Every dream, every fantasy, every thought was always of you." He took in a gulp of air, cool and thick, but he was barely able to taste it. "I... I was so angry at you, Sirius. So angry at you for what I thought you did. So angry at you for making me love you So angry at you for turning me on. I hated you... but I wanted you. I hated you for making me want you. And I hated myself for loving you." Realizing he was rambling rather incoherently, he stopped at that.


     Remus was the one trembling now. Sirius pressed himself close to the man, nuzzling into his neck and chin. "It's all right now," he said, wishing now he hadn't brought the subject up at all. "It's all right to have been angry with me. If you'd killed them I would have been angry at you, too." Sirius felt warm tears against his forehead and sat up, wrapping his arms around Remus' neck and shoulders, hugging him back. "Oh, Remus. It's all right now."


     "I always wanted you, Siri," Remus blurted out, trying to hold back his sobs. "I hated myself for it. But as hard as I tried, all I ever wanted was you again. And now that I have you..." his voice broke and he closed his eyes tightly, unable to face the answer.


     "Things aren't like we dreamed for, once upon a time," Sirius finished for him. "I'm different. You're different. It's hard to just pick right back up again after what we've been through. And the worst part is we can remember those times. We remember when love was all we knew... and we remember how it was taken over by fear and hatred. I wish we could go back to those days before."


     Remus shook his head, rubbing a hand over his face, wiping away his tears. "That's not it exactly. It's just... all that time I spent hating you and loving you and missing you. All I wanted was to have you back and now that I do, I spend the time trying to sleep and avoiding your questions and you spend it crying from nightmares and running from Dementors." He sniffed and grabbed for a tissue. Through teary eyes, he spotted it, but his hands fumbled a few times before he brought one up to his face. "There are things we can't control and things we can. And, yes, life is different. But I want to make the most of what we can control now. Now that you're here in my arms. Now that you're here in my bed. Now that... oh Merlin, not again! Can't these sneezes leave me alone for five bloody min... minutes?"


     His hand tightened around the tissue and he pulled away. His body shook with each sneeze, falling forward a little. "hehhKshhh! hihChuhhh! hehShuhh! hahChuhhh! Heh... heh-ehhhh..." Sirius pressed another tissue into his hand for him, and snuggled up to him again to reassure him. "ehhh-IHHHShuhh!" Remus went through a half dozen tissues before he was done blowing his nose. Then he sat back against the headboard with a sigh. "Sorry about the timing."


     "It's all right," Sirius soothed. "I figured out as much as I needed to. Why don't we lie back down and just hold each other?"


     "You're not going to have any more nightmares tonight?" Remus asked, hopefully.


     "I think you've driven them straight out of my mind for the night," Sirius said, giving him an encouraging smile. "Come here, let me hold you the way I used to." Remus looked up at him, Sirius' smile mirrored in his eyes. He nodded. They moved around in bed, Remus on his side, but leaning back against Sirius, who had curled up against his back, fitting against him perfectly from head to bent legs. With Remus lying back a bit, Sirius could wrap his arms around on the man, both beneath and above, locking his hands together against Remus' chest. "No need to think about those things any more," he whispered, his voice unsteady. "Just relax and think about what you have now. We'll make the most of it." He sniffled and nuzzled his face into the back of Remus head.


     "You all right?" Remus asked, turning his head to look back at Sirius at a difficult angle. "Are you certain you're not coming down with my cold? You're sniffling again."


     Sirius gave another weak smile and nodded. He rubbed his face into his shoulder, best he could, not wanting Remus to see the tears in his eyes. "Yeah. Yeah, I'm all right now." He sighed deeply, cuddling Remus to his chest. He might have liked to have fallen asleep just then, but there was one more thing to ask. "Tell me the truth. In your fantasy... when we fell asleep together... that part about the dreams. Did you just add that for my benefit?"


     Remus was silent for a moment. His eyes were closed. His breathing was slow. For another moment Sirius was nearly convinced Remus was asleep. But then he spoke softly, "Sometimes, when real life gets in the way, fantasies need to change a little. Important thing is that it's part of the fantasy now, isn't it?"


     Sirius nodded back, closing his eyes. He felt Remus' head return to its usual position, and the man's weight against him suddenly grew heavier as he quickly fell to sleep. And even with the sound of his snoring, and the fact that the cabin was still as cold and dark as ever it was, Sirius fell back to sleep, too, with no more frightening dreams to wake him back up.