His tone is mild, full of ‘everybody stay calm, nobody panic.’
Sirius is not panicking. He glances at the last knob of toast-crumb-dotted butter sitting in its dish, claps the lid back over it as inconspicuously as possible. He cracks only one egg apiece for them into the frying pan next to the bread. The rest he packs carefully away into the fridge. The eggs sizzle gently. He leans on the hob and watches Remus read the newspaper.
“It hasn’t been a moon yet, though, has it? You haven’t missed a day from this one.”
The Prophet crinkles as Remus lays it back down half-folded. ”Yes, well, apparently I look so ill I’m making the customers nervous. According to the manager.” The corners of his mouth turn up in a familiar half-smile. ”That, or the fat old slob has me pegged for a homosexual.”
Sirius laughs. ”Well, god forbid you serve people poof-y sarnies.” He pokes at the eggs, flips the bread over just before it begins to burn. ”No matter. We’ll find you something else. Maybe you can be on the Muggle telly. I’m sure those hospital dramas are always looking for peaky-looking extras.”
They make light of it. Sirius thinks of owling Lily and James later and asking after a dinner together.
Remus has picked up the paper again. Sirius watches his face. He is washed in grey from the dreary half-light of the small kitchen window. It’s cloudy again this morning. Rain-heavy. Sirius thinks he will probably be drenched on his way from their Whitechapel flat to the Safeway where he works. He will be unloading trucks in the rain.
“I’ll be owling Dumbledore,” Remus murmurs. ”I’ll need to take him up on the work he offered.” He doesn’t say what kind of work it is. They both know he can’t. Sirius feels a familiar brittleness, a twist in his stomach, a prodding in his chest. He thinks of long nights spent lying awake, four-legged on the bedroom rug, listening to the wireless.
He remembers to slide the eggs and bread out of the pan and onto the plates. The plates, because they’ve only got the two. The bread has burned.
He sets a plate and a fork by Remus’ elbow. He catches Remus’ eyes, leans down, kisses his forehead and runs a hand through his hair.
He fetches his own plate of breakfast and sits down at the table, salts his eggs.
The rain starts outside.