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Is it February? *scratches head* Well, I suppose I should start reposting my holiday fics. I had the pleasure of writing two for pinch hitters at [profile] rs_small_gifts. I love that fest because it makes me write r/s again, because it is low stress and fun, and because my co-mods [personal profile] magnetic_pole and [personal profile] sambethe are fabulous. I wrote one first war angsty and one old-fashioned fluffy. This is the fluff:



Title: Fine Art
Author: [personal profile] mindabbles
Recipient: [profile] snow_blossoms
Rating: PG
Highlight for Warnings: *a hint of voyeurism-lite*
Word Count: 2,000
Summary: Sometimes all you have to do is ask.
Author's notes: [profile] snow_blossoms, thank you so much for writing such a lovely pinch hit. I hope you enjoy this little thank you gift. Happy New Year and thank you from the smallgiftsmods. :) Thanks so much to [personal profile] magnetic_pole for the beta help.



In Gryffindor Tower, sometime during the week before Christmas Holidays, Seventh Year

The Goblin uprising of 1658 represented the first attempt of the--

"Moony," Sirius calls. "This essay is so boring I can't stand to copy it."

"Write your own then. Arse," Remus says, without looking up.

Remus is stretched out on his four-poster not writing his essay for Ancient Runes, not talking to Sirius, and not doing anything useful as far as Sirius can see. He does have a piece of parchment in front of him and that coal pencil-thing that gets all over his fingers. He's smudged a bit of it onto his cheek and it almost looks like a bruise.

Sirius tosses aside the History of Magic essay and swings his legs off his bed.

"What's that?" he asks, coming to stand next to Remus.

"Nothing," Remus says, a little too quickly, trying to cover the parchment with his arm.

"It's something. I can see it. It's under your hand where you are, pathetically I might add, trying to cover it," Sirius says. He leans over to get a better look. He sees the rough, sketchy marks of what looks like bloke's a bare chest.

"Who's this then?" Sirius asks, pulling at Remus' arm. He manages to dislodge it enough to see a pretty fit looking torso with a trail of dark hair on the stomach. He hasn't drawn the nether regions, but has certainly left room on the parchment. Remus draws all the time – the outline of a window in the Transfiguration classroom, the back of Peter's head in Charms, the entire bloody classroom in History of Magic. He draws people, but usually just outlines, and usually clothed. "I didn't realise you'd moved into racy pictures."

"It's a figure drawing, Sirius," says Remus, rolling his eyes. "People do it."

"Indeed," Sirius says. He's not entirely sure why this has got him grinning. "I just didn't know that you did."

"You're sullying fine art." Remus, regretfully, rolls up the parchment.

"Oh, I think you've done that all on your own."

"Shut up."

"Seriously, Moony," Sirius says. He feels giddy and he knows he is starting to annoy Remus and Remus will get that little line between his eyebrows and stop talking to Sirius any minute, but he can't seem to stop. "Where did you get the model? I mean, what was your reference? Do you have a photo? I'd like to meet this bloke."

This, apparently, is Remus' limit. He makes a little sound that signifies Moony is exasperated and leaves Sirius all on his own. As regrettable as that is, it gives Sirius some time to think. Remus drawing bare-chested men with a level of concentration usually reserved for exams or outwitting teachers is absolutely something to think about.


December 23rd, Christmas holidays at James' house, in the study, after picking the lock on the drinks cabinet

"Why would anyone drink sherry?" James asks. He pours a healthy, or unhealthy, amount of sherry into a whisky glass and takes a sip.

"Do you think Remus is gay?" Sirius asks. He taps the bottle of Ogden's Old Firewhisky with his wand and pours actual whisky into a whisky glass.

"What does that have to do with sherry?" James asks. His cheeks are already flushed from drink. "That has more to do with Sherman and I don't want to talk about that."

"I thought we weren't going to mention that as long as McGonagall is still alive," Sirius says. "Stop being an arse and answer my question."

"I hadn't thought about it," James says, ruffling his hair. "No. Definitely not."

"Why not?" Sirius asks, keeping his voice as steady as he can. "He's very neat. His socks always match. He has lovely penmanship."

"Are you mental?" James siphons the sherry back into the bottle with his wand and reaches for the Firewhisky. "You're gay and you're throwing out stupid stereotypes?"

"Did you really just put sherry that touched your mouth back into the bottle? Oh, and he's only had one girlfriend and her hands were bigger than mine."

"I don't want to know where you're going with that one," James says. "Forgive me for injecting logic into the proceedings, but why don't you just ask him if you're so curious?"

Sirius laughs and shakes his head. "This is a delicate operation. You wouldn't understand such things, you with the grace of a Troll. You can't just ask people if they haven't told you."

"People? I thought it was only Moony. How many people are you torturing? You can so ask people. Go on. Ask me." James flops onto the sofa next to Sirius and spreads his arms wide.

"I don't need to ask you, idiot. You are as subtle as an Erumpent with indigestion. If you were gay everyone would know. You'd wear rainbow robes. We're talking about Moony." Sirius notices for the first time how smooth Remus' nickname feels on his tongue. "Moony."

"You fancy him," James exclaims. He leaps off the couch and points, excitable prat that he is. "Merlin's balls, that's why this is so important all of a sudden. You fancy him. Oh, shit, why didn't I see it?"

"Shut up," Sirius says. He can't help but notice that he doesn't, in point of fact, disagree with James.


First day back at school after the Christmas holidays, in the library of all places

He knows that Remus is back at school ahead of them because there is a tin of shortbread from Remus' mum on each of their beds when he and James arrive. The Marauder's Map, which is never wrong, informs him that Remus is in the library.

He finds Remus practically leaning against one of the shelves. "Remus, Hel—what are you doing?"

"Madam Pince will turn them into hippogriff leavings if she sees them. Look," says Remus, peering through the shelves into the next aisle. His voice is filled with awe that makes Sirius' stomach feel funny. Remus moves so that Sirius can look and the sight of Gideon Prewett pressing Jeremy Jordan against the magical fungi section makes him feel as if he ate something wriggly for breakfast. But that's nothing to seeing this sight with Remus, who's clearly enjoying spying on them.

"Can you transfigure something into something else's leavings, really? I mean, if there isn't an actual hippogriff, are they actual leavings? Wouldn't that fall under Gamp's Law?" Sirius asks.

Remus looks at him as if he's just suggested cancelling Quidditch. Sirius can hardly blame him. He's a bit mystified by his response himself.


Later during the afternoon, the day that Sirius discovered that Remus is a voyeur (and willing to share), back in the library, but with James and no entertainment other than the memories

"So, he's gay then," James says.

"Either that or he was doing research for his figure drawings," Sirius says. "Our Moony. A voyeur."

"You think? I'd assumed he was so horrified at the sloppy rule-breaking that he couldn't look away," says James. "You do realise that Remus never does anything without a reason. He was telling you and you talked about dung."

"To be fair, he mentioned the dung first," Sirius says. He turns the page of the book in front of him as Madam Pince walks by.

"The question is: what was he telling you? Was he telling you that he fancies blokes in general or was he telling you he wants to share bloke-fancying activities with you specifically?" James makes a note on his parchment. It is supposed to be his Arithmancy homework, but Sirius has the sinking feeling that he's about to become the centre of a plan.

"Or maybe he was telling me he fancies a threesome with Jeremy and Gideon."

"You're an idiot and I'm going to ask him."


The next morning, nodding off in History of Magic, thoughts of Remus entangled with burly Quidditch players further distracting from Binns' droning on

Sirius leans his chin on his hand to stop his head from lolling as slips in and out of sleep. It wouldn't do to be seen lolling, mouth hanging open like a – well, like Peter at the moment.

A bit of parchment, folded into the shape of a bird flutters onto the table in front of him and lands, gracefully unfurling itself.

Sirius turns to James and mouths, "Show off."

"Just read it," James hisses.

Go back to the dorm at break. Shut up. Don't argue with me. I am the best friend ever.


Break, the Gryffindor Dormitory, for some reason following Potter's instructions, which has rarely turned out well in the past

Sirius pauses in the door to the dorm. Remus is prone on his bed. He's drawing again, having taken a day off to rest after the full moon. His fingers are black with charcoal and he's biting his lips as he stares at his parchment with the fierce concentration. There's a black mark next to his mouth. Sirius feels as if he's intruding on something terribly private. He coughs.

"Prongs, don't you have –" Remus trails off as he looks up and sees that it is not James. "Don't any of you have class today?" He asks, recovering himself and quickly turning the parchment over.

"It's break," Sirius says. He walks to the bed and sits on the edge. Remus doesn't move to make room for him. "Can I see?" he nods toward the drawing, now leaving dark smudges on Remus' blanket.

Remus looks at him, considering, measuring. Sirius is struck hard by the memory of the day he acknowledged that they were right about the reason he was ill every month – that particular kind of Remus-courage, that involved forging on ahead despite his certainty of rejection.

"All right, then," he says, sounding resigned, but maybe a little hopeful. "Have a look."

Sirius reaches out and pulls the parchment to him. It's the same drawing that Remus was working on weeks ago. The man's narrow waist widens to a slim torso and broad shoulders brushed by long, dark hair. The bottom half of the parchment is still blank. Remus has drawn in a face, which he rarely does as most of his drawings of people are from behind in classes. It is unmistakably Sirius. There is no way in hell that his nose is that long, but it is otherwise him. It's beautiful.

"Moony," Sirius says as a dozen questions fill his head.

"James suggested that you might like to see this," Remus says. He scoots up his bed and props himself on his elbows. His fringe falls over his forehead and he worries his bottom lip with his teeth.

"What else did he suggest?" Sirius asks. He lets his hand fall to Remus' blanket, inches from Remus' leg.

"He said that I should just ask," Remus says. He turns onto his side, head on his hand, and he doesn't look at all certain of rejection anymore. "I thought he was barking."

"A reasonable assumption with him," Sirius says. He smiles and Remus returns it with one that makes Sirius' toes tingle. "So, you asking?"

Remus shrugs. "I reckon I have a different question than I thought I did. Come here?"

He holds out his hand and Sirius crawls up the bed to lie on his side, facing Remus. Remus brushes Sirius' hair back from his face and Sirius tangles his feet with Remus'.

"I'm keeping the drawing," Sirius says. He picks it up and sets it out of the way on the bedside table.

"It's not finished," Remus says, and Sirius' stomach plunges to his knees.

Sirius leans and kisses the dark smudge of charcoal just at the side of Remus' mouth. "Maybe you'll finish it soon."

"Maybe I will," Remus adds. He turns his head to press his lips to Sirius' in what Sirius really, really hopes will be the first of many mind-blowing kisses.
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