That white noise was back in his head and his whole body felt numb.
It was better than the anger though. He leaned against the wall and ran his hands through his hair.
Fucking Snivellus...he deserves what he gets...see if he goes snooping around anymore...
Sirius shook himself out of wherever his mind had put him as James came running to him.
"Sirius, what are you doing? You were suppose to meet us twenty minutes ago. I sent Wormtail in without us..." He frowned. "What's wrong?"
"Fucking Snivellus." Sirius muttered irritably.
James watched him carefully. "What about him? What'd he do?"
"He was just running his mouth and lurking about...asking too many fucking questions."
James nodded slowly, sensing something amiss by the tone of his friend's voice and the look on his face. He licked his lips nervously. "Alright...well...we'll hex him for it tomorrow, mate..." He took Sirius' arm. "Come on, Pads-"
Sirius smirked and shook his his head. "I took care of it already. He won't be sneaking around us anymore."
Something flickered in James' eyes. He swallowed. "Sirius...what did you do?"
Sirius shrugged. "I didn't do anything. I just wanted to give him a little scare, that's all." He chuckled to himself. "So I told him how to get past the willow."
The color drained from James' face and his eyes grew twice their size. "Y-you did what?" He grabbed him by the shoulders. "Sirius, you're joking, right?" Sirius said nothing. James shook him. "SIRIUS! Fuck! Sirius what did you do!"
Slowly, realization seemed to dawn on Sirius' features and the cold look in his eyes faded, replaced with fear. He paled. "J-James...Fuck, James...I...I didn't mean-"
James shoved him roughly aside. "Go upstairs to the dorm, Sirius."
"No! I have to-"
"You've done enough, just go! Go and stay there!"
Sirius watched, frozen in shock as James tore off into the dark towards the whomping willow.
What did I do?
James had never run so fast in his life. He could hear his heart pounding and his breathing and nothing else. His mind was racing. What had Sirius done? What could Snape have possibly said to make Sirius betray Remus that way?
He couldn't think about it now. All he could think was to run faster.
He skidded to a stop in front of the Willow when he nearly tripped over a large branch on the ground. Shit. Was it too late? How far had Severus gotten?
Picking up the branch, he prodded the knot in the tree. Everything stilled. Including his heart.
The tunnel leading to the shrieking shack had never seemed so long and dark as he pushed himself to move as quickly as possible, the sound of his footsteps echoing off the walls. In the distance he could see the light of someone's wand.
"Severus!" He called desperately. There was no answer, but the light flickered with movement. "Stop! Don't go any further!" Finally reaching the other boy, James reached out and grabbed him by the back of his robes. Severus shoved him off roughly, his hand already on the door that would lead him right to the shrieking shack. Right to Remus.
"Potter? What are you doing-"
"Severus, please, listen to me." James tried breathlessly to rationalize with him. "You need to get out of here. You can't be here."
Snape sneered at him. "And you can be? Why?"
"I can't tell you!" James said desperately, willing the other boy to just trust him and leave. Make this nightmare go away. He'd deal with Sirius on his own, Remus would never have to know and everything would go on the way it should be. "You just have to trust me and go now, or both of us could get killed."
There was a loud, inhuman scream from behind the door and both James and Severus froze. "What was that?" Snape asked.
James swallowed. "Please...just leave."
"Tell me and I'll leave." Severus challenged, his hand still on the doorknob.
"Leave and I'll tell you." James lied. He couldn't think of a good enough lie. His hand was on his wand. "Don't make me hurt you to save you, Snape. I can't let you-"
"Typical fucking Gryffindor always thinking they've got to be the hero." Snape spat, once again shoving James away, this time hard enough that the Gryffindor stumbled back and fell to the ground. James heard the click of the door opening as he scrambled to his feet.
"SEVERUS NO!" He lunged forward, knocking Snape out of the way of the now open door. There was was a moment of sheer terror for both of them as giant, yellow eyes locked on them and the wolf growled.
"Holy shit-" Severus breathed, his eyes wide with shock and fear. The wolf charged forward and James slammed the the door shut, wincing as he felt it shutter behind him as the wolf collided heavily with it. Sorry Moony...
"SEVERUS RUN! GO!"
But Snape was frozen on the ground, unable to move. Moony kept throwing himself at the door trying to get to them. "Fuck." James swore under his breath. He pulled Severus to his feet. "RUN YOU IDIOT!"
It was dawn when James walked into the dorm room, bruised from the Whomping Willow and absolutely seething with anger. Sirius jumped up from where he had been anxiously waiting on his bed. He obviously hadn't slept. He was pale, and shaking and he had gotten sick several times during the night, disgusted with himself and terrified.
He heard a crack as James' fist collided with his face. Even though he knew he deserved that, deserved worse than that, he threw a punch back and the two of them ended up in wrestling on the floor of the dorm. Sirius was the first to forfeit, getting to his feet and wiping blood off his face with his sleeve.
"Look! I fucking deserve it okay, but I’m sorry! I didn’t mean for it to go that far! I didn’t think that-”
“But that’s just it Sirius! You DIDN'T THINK! And that could have gotten Snape and Moony killed!”
Sirius flinched at Remus' name, shame washing over him and feeling sick again. He swallowed hard. "...Is...Is he okay?" He asked quietly, not meeting James' angry stare.
James sighed, biting his lip and looking away as well. “He beat himself up pretty bad. Pete’s down in the hospital wing with him.”
“I need to see him,” Sirius made a move towards the door.
“You’re not going anywhere near him.” James said coldly, blocking his way.
“I didn’t mean for this to happen! I need to talk to him! I need to apologize-”
“You think apologizing is going to fix this? Sirius, he trusted you! ESPECIALLY you! You’re his bloody boyfriend for fuck sake. You’re suppose to protect him!”
"I was trying to protect him!" Argued Sirius, desperation evident in his voice.
"Well you did a right shit job of it!" James ran a hand through his hair. "Fuck, Sirius, what the bloody hell did you think would happen sending Snape in after a full grown bloody werewolf? I know you only see Remus as himself, but you forget that as much as you love him, he is still dangerous!"
“You don’t understand! Snape was saying horrible things about him! He was saying that he knew we had a secret and that he would find out! He was calling him a freak and I couldn’t…I didn’t…I lost it. I love him James! I really…” He made a strangled angry noise and punched the wall behind him, adding broken knuckles to his probably broken nose. “I need to tell him I love him…I need to apologize…”
James bit his lip. “I know you do Sirius…but I can’t let you see him right now. You need to stay away. For both your sakes..“
Angrily wiping away tears, Sirius turned to him. "D'you forgive me?”
“No.” James answered honestly. “Not now...I will…and Pete will…”
Sirius' eyes narrowed on him. "But Remus won't, is that what you're trying to say?" He ran his hands through his hair and James gave him an uncertain sort of look. “You’re wrong. You’re wrong, James. Remus and I…we…I love him and-”
"And you fucked up, Sirius." James shook his head. "Look, I can't tell you what Remus is going to do or think...I don't know if he'll forgive you but...I can't let you near him right now, alright? It's probably best if you just...just give everyone space, okay?"
Tears were falling freely down Sirius' face, but he nodded slowly. James turned to leave.
"James-" Sirius called quietly. "...w-what...what happened? Snape...Did he...?"
James sighed and shook his head. "He's fine. Cracked a rib getting away from the willow...and pretty shaken up from what he saw, as you'd imagine...Dumbledore made him swear not to tell anyone."
Sirius swallowed, biting his bottom lip hard. "Dumbledore knows that I-"
"I made him swear not to tell Dumbledore it was you." James muttered.
"Why would you-?"
"Because I think that the guilt you're feeling right now...and what you're about to go through...that's way worse than any punishment Dumbledore can dish out." And with that, James left Sirius standing alone in the dorm.
"No." He sat up despite the werewolf's attempt to pull him back to him. "I mean it. Look at me, Moony! Look at what I come from! What they do-!"
"They're bad people, Sirius." Remus went to take his hand but Sirius quickly jerked it away, pulling his legs to his chest and wrapping his arms around himself. Remus watched him a pained expression. "You aren't like them, Padfoot. I promise you that."
"How do you know?" Sirius asked bitterly. "If they could treat their own son this way, what makes you so sure I won't turn around and do something horrible to you as well? I can't control myself, Remus! I can't control the things I say, fuck! This is my own goddamn fault, me and my stupid fucking mouth!" His hands fisted his hair tightly as tears stung his eyes once again. Remus scrambled onto his knees in front of him, taking him gently by both wrists.
"That's not true, Sirius." He said firmly, bringing his hands down to his sides. "You aren't like that. You're good, Padfoot. So good. Don't you see?" He gently wiped under Sirius' eyes with his thumbs. "Look at what you've done..."
Look at what you've done...
Look at what I've done...
"Wuss." Muttered James, dropping the knife on the counter. He sighed and locked eyes with Sirius, raising the hand that still held the boys' wrist. "Your blood," he held up his own slit hand. "My blood." He pressed their palms together firmly. "Our blood. You're my brother, Sirius. Forever. No matter what happens, it's me and you. Got it? So I don't want to hear anymore about your stupid family or evil being in your veins, because as far as I'm concerned, whatever runs through yours is in mine as well. We have the same blood. Understand?"
Wrong. James is wrong...I'm exactly like my family...I don't deserve you...
Remus shook his head. "Not if what makes them happy is wrong. Maybe you're just a better person."
"But what if I'm not a better person?"
"You wouldn't be upset over it if you weren't."
"I just feel like no matter what I do, I'm still a Black. And I still have this darkness in me...no matter how hard I try to fight it, it'll end up coming out anyway. Like some sort of demon or something..."
"We've all got our demons, Sirius..."
And I don't deserve Remus...
"You..." Remus licked his lips. "You love me?"
Sirius nodded. "I think I always have, Moony..." He reached up to brush the fringe of Remus' hair out of his eyes.
Remus half laughed, half choked. "I love you too, Sirius."
They kissed softly again, just a touch of their lips together.
"...If we do this...us, for real..." Remus barely whispered, eyes baring into Sirius' with apprehension. "We could be risking everything, you know..."
Sirius smiled, resting his hand against Remus' cheek and running his thumb gently across the boy's lips. He shrugged. "What's life without a little risk?"
And Remus doesn't deserve a monster like me...