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HP: Rules to Being a Werewolf (M)


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Title: Rules of Being a Werewolf

Author: Unicornpearlz

Fandom: Harry Potter

Rating: PG

Spoilers: Sorcerers Stone

Warnings: Pairings: James/Lily, Sirius/Remus

Summary: Remus is sick, and ashamed of that fact. He views his illness as weakness, one that he can’t bestow upon his friends. It’s against the rules of being a werewolf. Set after Hogwarts, but before Remus/Sirius really get together, and before Lily gets pregnant.

1

“Heh...” Remus’ jaw went slack and his eyes fluttered closed. ‘Rule 1 to being a good werewolf,’ he heard his old teacher’s words in his head, ‘a sick werewolf is a weak werewolf.’ “Ehh…” he sniffed, trying to chase the tickle out of his nose. “HePCHoo!” The sneeze threw him forward and he snorted, uncharacteristically. He felt more in there though, and he felt the knot in his stomach begin to grow.

“Ahhh…” He sniffed wearily. He tilted his head back and pinched his nose closed. He felt the mucus run down his throat and started to cough. ‘A weak werewolf,’ his old teacher continued on, ‘is just as good as a dead werewolf.’ As he gasped for breath another one snuck out, “HePSHoo!”

He groaned out loud. What a rotten time for a cold. It was the first beautiful spring day of the year and he and his best friends were going to take a nice long walk and talk about anything and everything. It was James and Lily’s idea – an attempt to keep all of them connected, especially with the stresses that they’d been encountering in both their personal and professional lives.

He remembered his old school teacher with great fondness. His words were terrifying when he was a boy, but Remus had come to realize the validity in his statements. Werewolves were outcasted from society, and in order to become accepted, Remus had to be polite, intelligent, and honorable to a fault. Luckily, he was all these things naturally. “Eh… heh…Ep…” he held his breath. ‘Treat all around you better than you would yourself. And, above all, if you should fall ill, do not allow another to tend to your sickness.’ The sneeze subsided.

He blew his nose lightly and coughed heavily. That last rule had torn himself and his mother apart. She wanted so badly to help him, but – as his teacher…the man his mother had sent him to …had explained: ‘Werewolves are already burdens on society. The only person who should tend to a werewolf is his or her mate. But, this duty should not be taken lightly, for once a werewolf mates, it mates for life.’

“Essshoo!” the sneeze, heavy and wet, exploded out of him. He sneezed it freely, and quickly tended to his nose. A slight flush rose in his cheeks. He felt himself begin to sweat, but he wasn’t sure if it was a fever or nerves. He was hell bent on making it to this outing. He missed James and Lily terribly, but most of all he missed Sirius.

He and Sirius had been exceptionally close at Hogwarts. They were best friends to say the least. Remus often fancied Sirius as his mate, but sometimes wondered if that was just to make life easier. Remus remembered many a time when he hid his illnesses so that no one would tend to him. He was already ashamed enough for all the work that Madame Pomfrey did for him. Sirius always knew when Remus was getting sick – sometimes even before Remus himself. And, Remus appreciated the type of attention to detail that took. But, he couldn’t let someone take care of him. His low immune system was part of his illness, and he wouldn’t burden anybody else with it.

2

Remus had packed enough tissues for an army, but he still felt ill prepared. And, worse yet, he felt ill. The flush that he had felt earlier was most defiantly a fever. But, he didn’t want to miss this for the world.

He had been the first one to arrive at James and Lily’s and was received warmly – as always. Lily took one look at him and gave him a cup of her special tea for flus. Remus assured her that it’s not what he had, but she said that she’d rather be safe than sorry.

“Rem, if you’re not up to going out, then we can just stay here. It’ll give you time to nurse your cold.”

“No, no, that’s fine. The tea is just lovely, an-a-ah-HEH-eh…,” his breathing became shallow, and his eyes fluttered shut. He quickly turned his head into his shoulder. “Heh-eh-KSSSHH! HePSHHH! EtCHISSH!” His head swam as he suppressed the sneezes. He was sick. Sicker than he wanted to be.

“Bless you, Remus,” another voice said from the doorway.

He quickly blew his nose. “Beter!” he said, happily.

“My dear friend, what has gotten you so ill?” Peter asked, as he embraced Remus warmly.

“Nothig, just a sprig cold.” Remus sniffled, but returned the embrace.

“Are you sure you’re up for going out? I’m sure Lily here would take good care of you…”

“No!” Remus exclaimed. Peter looked at him, bewildered.

“I’m sorry Lils. But, really I’m fine. And, I’ll be fine. It’s just a cold. I really don’t want it to ruin our day.”

“But, it won’t, Rem,” Sirius said, coming in. “Now,” he asked turning to James, “what won’t ruin our day?”

James sighed. “Remus seems to have picked up a bit of a cold, but he doesn’t want to say here and ruin our day.”

Sirius bit his bottom lip absentmindedly. “Remus, are you okay?”

Remus nodded, while blowing his nose.

Something inside Sirius melted, and his stomach knotted up. Remus was always so strong. And, it always made Sirius sigh inside when he saw Remus suffer. “I’ll make you a deal, Rem. We’ll do the hike, but if you get worse, I’m taking you home and putting you to bed.”

“I’ll make you a deal, Sirius,” Remus responded. “We’ll go for the walk, and if I get worse, I’ll take myself home.”

“Remus, we’re not going to just leave you,” Lily started.

‘Only a werewolf’s mate…’ Remus heard in the back of his mind. He turned softly to Lily, his eyes full of fear. “Look, Lily. It’s not that I don’t ap-appr-appricia-Choo!” he sniffed, stuffily before continuing, “abbreciate the gesture. Bud… ah- heh-kesschoo! Hesshoo! Shoo!” He blew his nose fully, folding his handkerchief in half several times before his nose would let him continue. “But, I cannot be a burden. I was enough of that in Hogwarts. And, this pack is a pack – which means I’m supposed to take care of you – not you of me.”

Lily made to argue, but James put a hand on her arm and shook his head.

Sirius looked at Remus through concerned eyes. “Alright Moony. If you get worse, we’ll let you go home. But, for now, let’s get going.”

3

Lily took them all to a little path in the middle of nowhere. Remus looked around; when she had said she had put a lot of thought into it, she was right – not a single one of his allergies to be found. But, his fever was climbing, and though his friends were there, he didn’t want to be. He wanted to be home, nursing his cold and under the covers.

“How’re you feeling, Remus?” Peter asked gingerly. He had been eyeing Remus suspiciously since he found out he was ill.

“Fine, thank you,” Remus lied. With each passing second he felt weaker, worse. But, he would not show it. He was no longer a boy in Hogwarts. Now he was a grown man, and able to take care of himself.

If only his nose knew that. *sniff*

He sighed as he pulled a tissue out of his back pocket, and dabbed at his nose. It was starting to feel raw, and he winced at the sting. “HePChoooshh!” The sneeze exploded out of him, wetly. Luckily he was able to catch it.

The group all looked at him, sympathetically and a wave of bless you’s and gesundheit’s came from the group. “Thanks,” Remus said, unwaveringly. He would not allow how he was feeling to affect the day. Not, if he could help it. ‘A weak werewolf…,’ he heard in his head, as another sneeze crept out of him. “HesSHOOshh! Kethshhh! Ictchhhh! HepTCHooo!” Or four.

He sniffed wetly and tended to his nose again. Sirius chewed on his bottom lip again, as he felt his heart drop. Remus was so sick. He saw it, even when the others couldn’t. Remus’ red-rimmed puffy eyes and pink nose. The lines around his eyes and forehead deepened. His cheeks flushed with a light shade of pink, which offset the paleness in the rest of his features. And he trembled. Oh, it was slight, and nobody else ever seemed to notice. But, when Remus got sick, and tried to hide it, he would tremble. And, although he hadn’t been trembling at James and Lily’s house, he was now.

Sirius wanted to go to him. To let him lean on him. To hold him close and tell him that it was alright, and that Sirius was taking him home. But, Remus had always been so secretive about his illnesses. He was doing his best not to let it show. And Sirius would be darned if he was going to make Remus feel uncomfortable, or embarrass him in any way.

Remus saw the concerned look in Sirius’ eyes. The rest of the group was doing what they’d gotten used to doing – pretending Remus wasn’t ill. But, Sirius looked so worried, so concerned. Remus smiled. “Pads, can you come here for a min-mi-midut HePTCHOO!”

The sneeze had crept up on him. He sneezed it freely, as it took him completely by surprise and was so forceful it bent him at the waist. He paused for a minute, and Sirius ran to his side.

“Moony, are you alright?” he asked, his voice dripping with concern.

Remus panted to catch his breath. “I’m fine. I just wanted to doe – Oh, wait, ‘old ond.” He pulled out another tissue and blew his nose fully. When he was done, he sniffled. “I just wanted to *sniff* know how you’ve been faring during auror *sniff* training.”

Sirius took a deep breath and steadied himself. ‘Remus is fine,’ he told himself. ‘Remus can handle a little cold.’ “It’s okay. I love the work, but it’s so exhausting.”

Remus nodded. Sirius had lost a lot of weight since Hogwarts, and he wasn’t that big to begin with. “Is that why you haven’t been eating?”

Sirius paused. Remus was right, of course. Sirius had never been one for breakfast, and now he was working through lunch and often too exhausted to cook himself dinner.

Lily stepped up to Sirius. “Is this true, Siri? Have you not been eating?”

“It’s not big deal. I eat when I’m hungry.” He lied. He ate when he had the time.

“It is a big deal,” Peter piped in. Food’s important. It sustains life.

Sirius looked at Peter. His addiction was food and he was becoming quite portly. But, he refrained from saying anything untoward about that.

“It’s no big deal really,” he said, looking at his shoes. He started walking forward. ‘Darn Moony,’ he thought. ‘I try to help him and he embarrasses me.’ His pace quickened. He was flustered and felt very attacked.

“Sirius?” James called as he caught up with him.

“It’s nothing James. Just leave me be.”

“Nah, not going to do that. You know Lily didn’t mean to yell. We just worry sometimes.”

“It’s not Lily.”

“Than who? Remus?”

Sirius’ eyes shifted, and his paced slowed. “Why’d he put me on the spot like that?”

“Because he cared, Sirius. He cares a lot. He cares for us the way he denies being cared for by us. You know that.”

Sirius, nodded. He knew that. But, why was Remus always denying himself that sort of care. “I know. But, I’m worried about him.”

“He’ll be fine. He’s right, just a little cold bug. You know Moony. The slightest cold and it hits him like a flu.”

“I know. But, he should be in bed.”

“He’s fine. Look, Remus will tell us if it becomes too much. Trust in that.”

Sirius looked disbelieving at James. Remus had never told them before. What made James think he would now?

4

Sirius went back to Remus’ side.

“Sorry for putting you on the spot like that, Pads,” Remus said quietly.

“S’okay. Sometimes I just forget how observant you are.”

Remus smiled. Observant, yes. But, sometimes he saw too much. Like, if it was up to his observations, he and Sirius would have started dating years ago. But, he had long since convinced himself that it was all in his head. That Sirius liked girls – of course he liked girls, and that all the things Sirius seemed to notice about Remus were in his imagination.

“So what’s her name?” James was asking Peter.

Remus’ ears perked up. “Peter? Do you have a girlfriend?”

Peter flushed. “Not really. Just a friend who happens to be a girl. But, we do do a lot together.” He smiled, and Sirius and Remus exchanged knowing glances.

“That’s great,” Remus said, supportively. He sniffed lightly.

“Yea, and she’s really pretty,” Peter said dreamily.

“Any idea what her animagious is?” Sirius asked.

“A mouse,” Peter said with a smile.

“That’s gre-gr-grea- Shesshoo! Great,” Remus replied, enthusiastically.

“Bless, Rem,” Peter said, nervously. He didn’t usually excuse Remus. He was so used to acting like nothing was wrong that he was quite nervous about bringing any attention to it whatsoever.

“Thangs. Shesshoo! Hesshoo! Isshh!” Remus stopped in his tracks. His head was swimming so much he couldn’t focus. He could see James and Lily looking at him with very concerned expressions, but was unable to hear them. He was vaguely aware of Sirius talking to him. But, he was unable to reply.

“Heh…eh…ha…heh….EHP-SHOO!” The sneeze dropped him to his knees and made him lose vision for a few seconds.

“Remus? Remus!” Sirius was calling at him when his orientation returned.

“I’b okay, Pads. Jus-.”

“No, you’re not. Come on, I’m taking you home.”

“Doe! Doe! Don’t worry. I’ll be fine.” He quickly blew his nose but was unable to get far through the congestion.

“No, not this time Remus. Come on. I’ll take you home,” Sirius insisted.

Quietly, Sirius helped Remus to his feet. He kept a strong hold on his arm, even as they all said their goodbyes. Within minutes they had apparated back to Remus’ flat and Sirius set about the task of getting him to bed.

5

“Look Pads, Hisshh! You don’t have to. It’s really okay.” Remus had been trying for the better part of an hour to make Sirius leave the flat. But, Sirius wasn’t going.

“No, Remus. You spend too little time on yourself. I know you. You’re going to go to bed, and not get up for tea or food and then you’re just going to get worse from weakness. I care too much about you to let you do that.”

“But, Pads you don…don… don’t Hesshissh! Eptchoo! Hesshoo! understand.” He sniffled wetly and blew his nose fully.

Remus was settled in bed, hugging a box of tissues to him tightly.

Sirius came into the bedroom with a cup of tea and some crackers. After he placed the items on the nightstand he sat on the bed. “Then explain it to me Moony. Explain why after all these years of taking care of everybody else, you’d deny us the ability to take care of you.”

“Because…” Remus stalled. Should he tell him the truth? Or lie like he had so many other times?

“Please, Remus,” Sirius pleaded softly. His eyes were etched with concern.

“Because I’m a burden on society. I shouldn’t be a burden on my friends as well.” Remus coughed quietly.

“Remus!” Sirius gasped. “You are most certainly not a burden! Not on society and not on us.”

“Well I ruined your day, didn’t I?” Remus shot back at him.

Sirius was hurt. “You think you’re a burden on me?”

“No, Sirius. I don’t think it.”

Sirius’ heart soared.

“I Know it.”

And then it sank back down.

“And you can’t take care of me. It’s Shessh!! *sniff* not the way it works. HESHHH!”

“Then how does it work? Tell me Moony. After 10 years of friendship, you owe me at least that.”

*sniff* “Only a werewolf’s mate can care for them. It’s a rule. And you… you don’t love me that way.”

“You never knew? All those years of being observant and you somehow missed it?”

“Tesshh! Excuse me. Missed whad?”

“Remus, I have loved you since I first got to know you. And then it grew as we did. And when you came out to us – I was so happy. But, with my family – I couldn’t tell you the same. I was hoping I’d left enough clues that you’d just know.”

‘I must be hallucinating,’ Remus thought. “Really?” *sniff*

“Really. There isn’t another person in this world I want to spend the rest of my life with. I love you, Remus,” he said and handed Remus his tea.

Remus smiled as he took it. “I love you too Sirius.”

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oh wow...i loved it!! its great how you changed his voice with the cold, to make him sound all snuffly. wonderfully written. cant wait to read the next part!

~chui

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