Sometime at five years old, fear had crept into Remus’ bones and made a home. It was an itch that crawled under his skin, and no matter how hard he scratched, no matter the scars he left there, it would not go away. Fear had appeared that night when he called to his father that there was a monster under the bed. When he lay there trembling watching the shadows in the blackness outside his window. He pulled the blankets tight around him and shut his eyes even tighter telling himself the monsters were just trees, but from then on fear had latched onto him with a bite and refused to let go.
It had ached inside him for the first moon and shredded him just as the wolf did. For the first time in his life, Remus Lupin had something that could not be fixed by his mother, or some tea, or a nap. He had a ghost that wouldn’t rest, a ghost that tapped on his shoulder and reminded him that he was a monster, a beast, he was dangerous and there was no cure for what he was. Remus learned to live with his ghost and the wolf, but now he knew, he could not be trusted.
Hogwarts was waiting for Remus baggage and all in the fall of 1971. His secret joined those of the castle, and settled it’s way into that broken down shack behind the willow, making itself a ramshackle home. He was not a fool he reminded himself, he would not make friends, he would be careful. He was dangerous. The need to destroy was in the iron of his blood and flowed through his veins, the scars on his chest would never fade, and his ghosts would never fade. He carried this fear of himself and clutched tightly the reminder passed to him by his father; be careful.
Then there was a new fear. It didn’t settle in his bones and shred his gut. It buzzed in the air around him, and the air around the boy. It flushed his cheeks, and it made him drunk on sweet melancholy. Remus craved this fear, just as he craved the wild softness of someone so good in a world so bad, just as he craved him. Him, the boy with the mischievous eyes and the heart of gold, the boy he, a monster, could hurt. All Remus knew he was capable of was pain and scars, he knew this and yet, he hoped so desperately that Sirius was the exception. He was so selfish, so selfish for wanting Sirius even though he would inevitably hurt him, so selfish for wanting what he didn’t deserve, what could destroy them both. But mostly he was scared because Sirius wasn’t, because he really should be, because with the buzzing fear came the most wonderful feeling that filled his head and his chest with a warmth he didn’t recognize, and made the fear and warnings seem insignificant. His heart thrummed in his chest, and he was scared, but maybe just maybe that wasn’t so bad. Maybe the most horrible things, and the best things in life come with the same feeling. Maybe fear had been a part of Remus’s so long he didn’t know how to feel without it. Remus let the world and the worry swirl around his head, and fixed his eyes on Sirius. He was irresponsible. He was paying no mind to the warnings hanging in the air. For once he could not bring himself to care. With fear and love and hope edging at his mind Remus stepped forward and kissed the boy. The buzzing faded away, his heart continued to beat, and for the first time his bones stopped aching. Maybe I can love without hurting, maybe this isn’t a bad idea, and maybe I don’t care if it is.