Written for cowboyguy, December 2017
Finding a paragraph in the text that addressed just the point he was trying to make, Remus traced the words with one finger while he scribbled on a parchment. His two feet on the subject was still only a foot and a half, but all he needed was another paragraph or two before the end summary and then he'd be done with the essay.
“hehhhh!” He lost his place in the book and dropped his quill pen, using both hands to search desperately among the balled-up hankies also on the table in front of him. Locating one that was usable, he pressed it to his nose and mouth. He breathed heavily, hotly into it for a few seconds, eyes closing, body tensing up. “hehhERSchhhh! Uhhh... uhhh-ERSchhoo!” Even though he had little left to write, it was still going to take him ages if he kept stopping to sneeze every few minutes.
After snuffling into his handkerchief, he crumpled it and dropped it back onto the table. He tried to turn his attention back to his essay, but he felt it. It was strong and unnerving and undeniable. He lifted his head and stared. “Don't you have something better to do right now than watch me?”
His elbows on the table, his chin and cheeks cradled in his palms, Sirius considered the question with a dramatic carefulness only someone as suave as Sirius could pull off. Finally, he made a thoughtful grunting sound. “No, I don't.”
Remus sighed. “How about sniff your own homework? It's only the first day of the holidays. You can't have finished it already. We've got loads.” Every one of their professors had set them massive amounts of work so they wouldn't forget everything they'd learned so far this year in their N.E.W.T. level classes.
“That's just it, it's the first day of the holidays. I can't spend it working.”
“But you can spend it watching me?”
Sirius' face broke out in the most Sirius Black grin ever. “Absolutely.” He cocked his head slightly. “I love watching you do everything.”
“Yup. I think so.”
“Me doing homework?”
“Yup.” The way he said it, it sort of sounded like a bark.
“Me scolding you for not doing homework?”
“Yup. Even that.”
“No. Not even the great Marauder Messr Padfoot could like when I blow snot into hankies.”
Sirius cocked his head in the other direction. “Actually, you're kind of adorable when you do that. There's this look of intense concentration you have when you're trying to clear your nose.”
“-ly in love.” He batted his eyelashes playfully. “Hopelessly in love with you.”
Remus flushed and buried his nose back in his books. Problem was, it was a nose that kept wanting to drip. He shivered and reached for another handkerchief. He snuffled and rubbed and snuffled a little more. He risked a look at Sirius, who was frowning suddenly, all playfulness gone.
He sprang to his feet. “I'll be right back.” Remus watched him dart out of the common room and take the stairs two at a time as though he were on all fours.
Then Remus sorted through the handkerchiefs again, finding one that was barely used only just in time. “hehhh-Ihshooo! Heh... hehhh... heh...” He kept the handkerchief pressed to his nose, even though the sneeze was backing away and probably wouldn't come out now. He didn't want to risk accidentally sneezing on his parchment and having to rewrite it.
He heard heavy footsteps on the stairs and knew them at once as Sirius'. The shaggy black-haired boy appeared before him again with a large bolt of black and red. “Hands down for a sec,” he said. And, when Remus lowered the hankie, Sirius wrapped what turned out to be a soft scarf around Remus' neck. It went round and round until the ends dangled against his patched gray jumper. “Okay. Back up.”
Smiling, Remus raised the tissue back to his face. “Thanks,” he said through the cloth. “I was feeling cold.”
“Yeah, I know. I saw you shiver. And I think I've discovered that's the one thing I don't like to see you do.”
“So you got me a... a... scarf? hehh-Ihtchhoo! Erschhhhh!”
Sirius nodded, hovering beside the table. “Bless you.”
“I... sniff! Sniff! I can think of a better way to keep me warm.”
And, just like that, Sirius' grin was back. He grabbed his chair and dragged it over to Remus' side of the table. In fact, he snuggled right up to Remus' side, slid an arm around Remus' middle, and rested his cheek on Remus' shoulder and the scarf. “Was this what you were thinking of?”
“Exactly.” He loved when Padfoot read his mind like that. And he loved when Padfoot snuggled up next to him.
Sirius pointed to Remus' essay. “Oi, you got that bit with the spells wrong. I don't think they originated there.”
Except when Sirius read his homework and thought he knew everything.
“Pads!” Remus moved his parchment aside.
“All right, all right. I promise I won't read it as long as you let me stay.”
Remus smiled. “Stay.”
Sirius made a huffing sound that was sort of like a happy sigh and snuggled even closer. He closed his eyes.