Paint It, Black

Happy Birthday (one day late....

Happy Birthday (one day late....

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but the fic was on time.)

It's [info]torino10154's birthday!!! For those of you who don't know this already we are friends like none other. So I have a few birthday wishes.

First: Happy Birthday!
B: I wrote you a little something that I am feeling guilty about because it's not porny (might as well be gen) and it doesn't really feature a pairing you ship (I'm selfish). But I did write it with you in mind and wanting to please you.
III) Yes I will post it to ij but ij is sucking a nut right now.

Title: Please Read the Letter
Author/Artist: [info]gryffindor_j
Rating: PG
Pairing(s)/character(s): James/Lily, Remus/Sirius and maybe even some Snily
Summary: James asks Remus and Sirius to do him a favor.
Word Count:~1300
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Warnings: None
Notes: Ganked the title from a song because I thought an unread letter is such a heartbreaking idea. Thanks to [info]trubbleclef for the look over, so all mistakes are now my own.

James stood, bending slightly at the waist, his arms extended straight out in front of him. His palms supported him as he held the edge of the sink and dropped his head down. His shoulders looked tight and almost pressed together, his face pinched in concentration. Everything about him looked stressed and completely spent, not that anyone could blame him.

"Are you sure?" He looked up to Sirius, who stood to the right of James, but faced him with his arse pushed up against the counter.

"No." Sirius uncrossed his arms and fidgeted with the shirt he wore. It was too short for his tall frame and didn't quite meet the waist of his denims, leaving a small strip of his perfect skin visible. "I told you it was a ruuuuumor." Sirius exaggerated the word because he was a little annoyed with James.

"Anything else?"

"Jesus, James! Moony and I are trying but it isn't exactly easy. When I mentioned it to Moody he acted as if I was looking for a way to go chat up some old schoolmates." Sirius fidgeted with his shirt again, uselessly tugging it down.

"Don't snap at me and what fuck is wrong with your shirt?" James pushed himself away from the sink and stared and Sirius accusingly.

"Bad wash charm or something." Sirius could lie so seamlessly.

Remus wrapped his robes more firmly around him even though it was far to warm in the kitchen to keep them on. He couldn't let James see the shirt he was wearing, which was too long for him.

"Look, James," Remus said stepping forward before he and Sirius really started shouting at one another. "We are having a hard time finding anything and we don't understand why you care so much."

"I don't." James waved his hand towards the ceiling, gesturing towards upstairs. "It's Lily, she's been thinking about him."

"Snape?" Sirius shuddered slightly.

"They used to be friends or something. And she told me she keeps thinking about him and crying over it all the time. She's always—"

"It's OK, Prongs." Sirius reached out, placing his hand James's shoulder. James lightened at the friendly touch. "Pregnant birds are complete nutters. We had to drop by the Longbottoms the other night and poor Frank, I'm pretty sure he has a new arse hole because he didn't put the dishes away properly."

James smiled somewhat guiltily as if he wasn't sure he was allowed to hold the opinion of his wife being a nutter.

"We'll keep looking." Remus moved to stand closer to James and Sirius. They had promised James they would do all they could to find out anything about Snape. It was something they would only do for each other. None of them, including Remus, ever sat up at night wondering about him. "As soon as we find anything about Snape we'll let you know. It hasn't been easy though."

"Yeah, I know. I think she would feel better if I could tell her something. Never thought I'd be hunting him down for the sake of my wife."

"Who's hunting?" All three of them jumped as Lily came waddling into the kitchen. She wasn't due for almost a month but her belly was quite huge and she carried the baby very low. She stopped and looked at them standing close together in the kitchen and narrowed her eyes "What are you up to?"

"Lily you look glowing. Pregnancy seems to really agree with you." Sirius could lay on the complete bull shit like no one else.

"Sirius, your bloody charms don't work on me." Lily moved past them to the cupboard pulling out a teacup. While her back was to them Sirius took the opportunity to mouth mental and nod at James. James slapped Sirius on the back of the head but Lily caught him as she turned around.

"So what is it? Why are you two standing in my kitchen bickering with my husband?"

"They always bicker, you know that," Remus assured her. "Even when they were twelve, it was exactly the same."

"That's what you get when an Aries and a Scorpio are best friends," Lily said sagely.

Remus could feel the relief spread through the group at having successfully distracted her. James was so happy to be off the hook he didn't even reply with his normal come back anytime Lily mentioned anything related to Divination, which was always along the lines of it being complete tripe.

James moved to get the tea out for Lily and gently took the cup from her hand. She touched him softly on the elbow thanking him. Sirius leaned close to Remus, the shirt sliding up Sirius's side exposing an obscene amount of skin and whispered in his ear, "You're always the best about bull shitting people away from what ever we're planning."

They left James and Lily to their day, and went to go see if there was anything else they could find.

The article in the Daily Prophet four days later made searching out Snape no longer necessary. It announced the new staff for the coming school year, Snape would be back at Hogwarts.

Remus had always been a little too comfortable with pain. His life had been so physically painful he allowed to emotional ones in too easily. He should leave for India like he planned to do as soon as the burial was over, but he found himself walking up the high street in the direction of the Potters' house.

He stood safely outside the gate, as if it could protect him from all the pain on the other side of it.

Sod this.

Nothing, he felt, could possibly get worse. He swung open the gate and stepped onto the garden path he had taken so many times. Rubble was everywhere, furniture ranging from half-burned to completely charred. An old postman's desk stuck out of the rubble of what had been the dining area. It had been Lily's, and was her father's before he died, she kept it in the guest room. For some reason Remus was drawn to it.

It was canted awkwardly on it's side and a large beam supporting was all that kept it from tipping over completely. It wasn't as badly burned as other things but had a great bit of damage from falling to the floor bellow. Remus knelt down and reached for the drawer to open it. It was stuck but he tugged on it firmly and it finally came half open. There were several letters tied in different bundles in the drawer. One bundle looked like letters James had sent to Lily; James had a bit of a hopelessly romantic heart. Remus put those letters down. Some things should always remain private.

Another bundle looked like letters from friends. Remus dropped those letters--he didn't want to see that bastard ever again, let alone his handwriting.

The final bundle was all the letters Lily had ever received from Hogwarts. She was sentimental that way.

Remus went to tug the drawer out more but it was stuck on something. He squeezed his hand through the narrow slot, feeling around with his fingers. He felt a piece of paper stuck in the back of the drawer, impeding it from being pulled out all the way. Remus gripped it tightly and yanked it out.

It was a letter still in its envelope. It looked like it had been shoved away in the drawer to become old, crumpled, and forgotten. Curiosity overcame Remus and he broke the seal on the envelope and pulled the letter out.

Dear Severus,

I read the news in the paper that you are going to be the new Potion's Master. I'm very happy for you. No matter what Slughorn said, you were always the tiniest bit better at potions than me. (If you tell anyone I admitted that, I'll hex you)

My baby is due fairly soon. Perhaps when he goes to Hogwarts you will still be there and you will be his professor... I would like that.

Again, congratulations. I cannot think of anyone who deserves such a wonderful post more than you.

All my love,

Remus tucked the letter back in the envelope and buried it sacredly back in the drawer. Maybe if he ever saw Snape again he would be kinder to him than he had been before. It was the least he could do for Lily.

  • Thank you again, darling! *smooches*
  • Oh yeah, the idea of the unread letter is heart-breakingly sad. What it would have meant, for Severus to read the letter...
    Well done.
    • Thank you. The changes something so small could have brought about in Severus is really heartbreaking to consider. He is a man who lives in the subtleties and a letter even a few lines would have been the world to him. My personal favorite part was when Remus observed the letter was left to become old, crumpled and forgotten...just like Severus was left :-(.
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