To Be Normal
Written for the Fallen: Remus/James Autumn Fuh-Q-Fest.
By: Vixenette

"Cheers," James grinned, raising his bottle of butterbeer. Seated across from him, Sirius and Remus mimicked his action. The glass clinked together.

It was busy in the Three Broomsticks. The cacophony of voices, laughter, and shouts filled the air, overwhelmed every now and again by the music coming from the Wizarding Wireless on a shelf. Madam Rosmerta was sliding glasses of ale and mulled mead down the bar with a practiced hand, giggling as two wizards with large moustaches and thick middles flirted with her as she tried to work.

Christmas was the holiday that seemed to bring all unattached wizards to the bars in Hogsmeade, and the Three Broomsticks was always the most popular, partly on behalf of the pretty barmaid and owner. James had managed to secure Dumbledore's permission to let the three friends go to Hogsmeade with his ever-improving debate skills. "I trust that Mr. Lupin will make sure that none of you get into trouble," the Headmaster had said to James the day prior. "Madam Rosmerta will also keep an eye out. Make sure that she has nothing to report to me when you return that night." It was a holiday that James was sure he would never forget, and he was grateful to the Headmaster for letting the three of them go out by themselves, even if they WERE made to promise not to leave the bar.

"It's too bad that Wormtail had to go home," Remus said quietly, his brown eyes surveying the room as he took a sip from his drink. Peter had been pressed by his mother to go home for the Christmas holidays. If it had been James, who was the sort to wheedle what he wanted from his mum, the fourth of their little group could have convinced his mother to let him stay with his friends at Hogwarts. Unfortunately, as Sirius casually pointed out, Peter was a 'Mummy's boy.' Peter, with a pout, had agreed, and had promptly replied to his mother's owl that he would see her at King's Cross Station.

James nodded at Remus, agreeing. It would have been nice if the four of them had been able to stay, but in his opinion, three was better than two or one. At least he didn't have to spend Christmas alone.

With a loud sigh, Sirius jerked his body around in his seat. "This butterbeer is not strong enough," he complained. "What's a bloke got to do to get a decently potent drink around here?" He swiveled his head towards Madam Rosmerta, eyeing her across the room. "You think I could charm her into letting us drink firewhisky?"

"I doubt it," Remus said. "She's nice, but she's not daft. She could get in trouble for giving that stuff to us."

James studied Remus. He found that he had been doing that a lot lately, and he tore his eyes away to look in the same direction that his two friends were.

Madam Rosmerta had always liked him, he knew. She also liked Sirius. The two were a pair that joked, flirted, and went out of their way to be charming towards her at every moment possible, and she was hopelessly smitten with them, or so James thought. He had caught her looking in Sirius' direction more than once during that day alone, and they had not been there very long. He pushed his bottle back, standing up and looking pointedly at Sirius. "We could go try the usual," he suggested.

Sirius looked blank for a split second, but then his face lit up with a wicked light. "Yes," he practically hissed, setting his own bottle down on the table. He stood.

Remus, James noted, was looking skeptical. "You coming, Moony?"

Shaking his head, Remus raised his hands up. "You two do what you like. I'll just wait here."

The standing pair made their way over to where the pretty barmaid was running her wand over some dirty glasses, plastering on their patented I'm a sweet and completely innocent angel faces. Conquest seemed certain, James thought, with his partner in crime at his side and his motivation back at the table.

* * * * *

"You boys are a little young to be out here this late, eh?"

Sirius jerked his head up at the question, adamantly trying to focus his vision on the man standing in front of their table. Late? What?

"What time izzit?" Sirius jerked his head again, this time towards the source of the question, his head feeling as if a bucket-full of hippogriff feathers had been stuffed inside his skull, rendering him unable to think solid thoughts. James looked like Sirius himself felt, with bright eyes, blotchy cheeks, and a form that seemed unable to hold still.

The man grunted. "Does Headmaster Dumbledore know you three are here?" He didn't wait for an answer, instead calling out to the barmaid. "Rosmerta! Do these three have permission to be here?"

Sirius thought that Madam Rosmerta waved and nodded her head, but that could have been a troll stamping his feet against the floor to get rid of the snow on his boots, too. He knew that he was pissed.

"Rooms," James called out suddenly. He yelled out, "Can we get some rooms, Madam Rosmerta? I've got Galleons right here..."

The red blob with flesh-coloured ends came close to their table, and through his blurred vision, Sirius could tell that it was the barmaid.

She sighed. "Maybe I shouldn't have given you boys that firewhisky. I don't know how I let you talk me into it. Let me contact Dumbledore and see if it's okay for you three to stay here." She walked away, leaving Sirius to ponder whether or not she would get in trouble by telling Dumbledore that he and his friends were completely pissed.

Time passed. Sirius took another sip of his drink, glancing over at Remus' head, which had fallen onto the tabletop some time ago. Straining his ears over the sound of the patrons still in the room, Sirius fancied that he could hear Remus snoring. He laughed, kicking under the table at James, who was also looking at their sleeping friend.

"If we can't stay here, do you think you could carry him back?" Sirius looked at James, waiting for an answer, but James just looked puzzled. Oh. Did he say that correctly? He tried again. "Can you carry him back to Hogwarts?"

James opened his mouth to answer when Madam Rosmerta appeared again, three mugs of what looked like tea balanced in her hands. She set them down. "Here," she said. "Drink these, and then you boys head up to bed. Dumbledore knows that you'll be staying here tonight." She paused, and then put a key on the table. "Sorry, lads, but I only have one room available up there. I have some extra blankets that I can send up, though, so two of you can share the bed and the other could sleep on the floor." She eyed Remus wearily. "I don't suppose he would be complaining too much about not being in the bed."

Sirius smiled up at her, and then took the key in his hand, running his fingers along the metal. "Thank you," he said. "We appreciate the kindness that you've shown us tonight, Madam. You are truly a wonderful goddess."

Judging by the confused look on her face, though, Sirius thought that he must have buggered up those few sentences, too.

* * * * *

Sirius had said something else unintelligible, but James was not an accomplished Legilimens, as clever as he was. He could not search Sirius' mind for the proper meaning of what sounded to him like, "Two treats mind numb damn loose," with various other syllables intertwined between the words. Surely, that was not what Sirius meant.

Remus' hair was an interesting mixture of brown and blond. James noticed because he could see individual strands as the light from the fireplace and the sconces on the walls illuminated the entire room. Sirius was laughing at something, but as James looked around, afraid that poor Remus would be woken up by the noise, he could see nothing to have prompted the laughter.

James sipped at his tea, trying to force his mind to focus, wanting to beat down the haze that had slipped over his brain sometime between the third and fourth glasses of firewhiskey. He sighed, unsuccessfully attempting to pull up Lily Evans' face in his head to help clear it.

All he could see, though, were soft brown eyes, thick eyelashes, thin lips that curled up at the corners, a straight nose...

No! He drained the rest of his tea, set the cup on the table, and looked at Sirius. "I'm tired. Let's go to bed."

* * * * *

Remus was trying to keep his head up as he was half-lifted up the stairs to the room that they were going to share, but the effort was in vain. He was knackered, he knew, because of the full moon that had only passed two nights ago. Only two drinks had made him drowsy enough to fall into that dream-like state that signaled the moment before nodding off completely.

James, on one side, grunted as he led the way sideways into the room, shifting his hand from Remus' waist to the hip, digging thin fingers into the flesh. Remus felt unusually flushed from the contact. James, he knew, was as plastered as Sirius, but the two had managed to get him up to the room anyway on the assumption that he was further gone than either one of them. Sirius, on his other side, was breathing hard, the scent of alcohol wafting sideways across Remus' face.

For about one second, the three stared at the bed. It was small. Very small. A pile of blankets lay in one corner, obviously the ones sent up for someone to sleep on the floor. But seeing as how the three were now awake, Remus knew that none of them wanted to feel the hard cold wood against their back.

"We'll fit," James said, his voice a little loud. Remus winced, watching as James strode quickly to the bed, climbing on and scooting to the edge by the wall, kicking his boots off the edge of the bed. He got under the covers, faced towards the wall, and when Sirius moved to turn the light off, the silvery glow from the waning moon outside the window illuminated the wild black hair that was tufted above the edge of the covers.

Remus moved to get into bed, thinking that being in the middle would be hot but not unbearable, but Sirius was faster. With two strides, a kick of boots, a lifting off of a shirt, and the toss of a pair of beige trousers, Sirius was soon slinking into the middle of the bed in only his boxer shorts.

"Come on, mate," Sirius said softly to Remus, who was still standing at the door. Remus sighed walked over to the bed, sitting down on the edge to take his boots off. He was about to take off his shirt when he felt hands at his sides. Jumping a little, he turned his torso halfway around to find Sirius watching him.

"I thought you were sloshed," Sirius said. He was sitting up, his hands on the bottom of Remus' shirt, the fingers of his right hand brushing against the skin underneath the hem. "I was going to help you."

Remus shrugged and pulled the shirt off, throwing it in the corner in the same direction as Sirius' clothes. "I only had a few drinks," he told Sirius as he lay down. "I was just tired." He was more awake now that he had moved around, though, and he turned to face Sirius. "I could have gone back to Hogwarts."

Sirius let out a sigh, his arm snaking underneath his pillow as he laid his head down, his left hand settled between their bodies. Remus felt a little uncomfortable, being so close to someone like that, the heat from another body making him sweat just a little. He closed his eyes, folding his arms next to Sirius', which was the only place left for them.

It was quiet. There was the occasional sound of laughter drifting up the stairs outside the door to their room, but the breathing of the three boys was the loudest thing in Remus' ears. He shifted quietly, trying to get comfortable. Sirius rolled over onto his back, folding both of his hands on his stomach, and Remus studied his friend's profile in the streaming moonlight from the window.

Sirius had kind of a large nose, Remus noticed as he looked. There was a small bump in the bridge, and on a smaller scale, it was shaped sort of like Snape's. Of course, if Remus had ever mentioned that, he was sure that Sirius would never forgive him.

Without warning, Sirius turned his head to look at Remus, catching the werewolf by surprise. Remus tried to close his eyes in time to prevent Sirius from knowing that he was studying him, but he knew that Sirius had seen him. He feigned sleep for a second, forcing his breathing to even out. He could feel Sirius' breath on his face.

"I'm horny," Sirius whispered suddenly. Remus felt his eyes fly open.

"What?!" He stared. "What are you on about?"

Sirius pushed the covers down and stared at him, and although it was still dark, Remus told himself that he could actually see the blue in Sirius' eyes. The air from the room was a little cold, making the hairs on his bare arms stand up. He raised his eyebrows at Sirius.

"Let's have a wank, Moony," Sirius said, his voice still slightly slurring. Remus was sure that he had already fallen asleep, and was now dreaming.


Sirius' hand waved about. "A wank, Mr. Proper. Don't pretend that you've never done it. I've heard you."

Remus felt his cheeks flush with embarrassment, but he couldn't deny it without sounding like an utter prat. "I don't want to do it in front of you!" He lifted his head slightly and glanced over at where James was laying, the broad back turned to them.

"Come on then, Remus. I just want to relieve some tension, and I can't do it alone."

His eyes already adjusted to the darkness a bit, Remus could just barely see Sirius' hand making its way down.

"You have to live a little, Moony. Experimentation is just a stepping-stone to discovering your true self. How will you know what you like if you don't try different things?" Remus snorted, but he had to admit to himself, rather wearily, that Sirius had a point.

"So if I have a wank with you, right here, then what would that tell me about myself?"

Sirius grinned at him. "That you aren't completely opposed to being intimate with another bloke." Remus rolled his eyes, but he could feel a tight feeling starting in his chest, and the heat from Sirius' body was beginning to scorch. "It's not as bad as you might think. Two knobs are better than one, you know."

On the other side of Sirius, James snorted and then seemed to choke, coughing. Sirius just grinned at Remus again, moving one hand down to his own crotch and placing the other on Remus' thigh. "Come on, Moony. We'll do each other. It'll be like we're just helping each other out."

"I can have a perfectly good wank by myself, thanks," Remus said dryly, but his voice cracked at the last word from the first stirrings of arousal that seemed to crawl in his belly. "And since when do you take yourself for an expert on sexual relations with a bloke?"

Sirius laughed a little, and Remus drew an intake of breath as he looked down to see that Sirius' hand had slipped inside the waistband of the thin boxer shorts. "Since I found out first hand, of course."

The hand that was on his own thigh felt as if it were on fire, the heat seeping though the fabric of his trousers. Remus sucked in another breath and held it, part of him wanting Sirius to move his hand closer to the obvious destination, but a part of him wanting his friend to laugh it off, feign pulling a small prank, and keep his hand to himself. He was sure, though, that the part of him that wanted Sirius' hand closer to his crotch was the larger, more prominent side. He shifted a little, and the hand on his thigh rose up higher.

"You had relations with a bloke," Remus asked, his voice still refusing to lower itself.

Sirius moved the hand on Remus' thigh higher, the side of the little finger almost touching the fold between the leg and the hip. His other hand, buried to the wrist in his boxer shorts, was moving. Remus struggled to control his breathing, his heart beating wildly in his chest. If he acted like he wanted this to happen, and then it just turned out to be Sirius playing around...

And then the hand on his thigh left only a lonely second before settling on his crotch, the nimble fingers curling under the rising bulge. Remus couldn't help but let out a grunt as he tensed up, not wanting to thrust but using every bit of will he possessed to keep still. The hand closed up and squeezed lightly.

"Maybe one or ten times," Sirius said almost casually, and then moaned a little as the hand in his boxer shorts moved some more. "Maybe more than that. I think I lost count." He paused, and then said, "Or I could just be thinking that I did because I'm completely pissed."

Remus squeezed his eyes shut as the fingers at his crotch unzipped his trousers, sliding in the opening. The cloth of his own boxer shorts was pushed away, hand sliding over the curls before touching the hot flesh of his erection. He bit at the corner of his pillow, trying not to scream out as he wanted to, pleasure surging through him as Sirius' hand massaged his shaft.

And then suddenly, the hand was gone. Remus looked up, breathless, to see Sirius sitting up, staring down at him. Heavy-lidded, with long black hair tangled down broad shoulders, lips wet and parted, Sirius looked like a picture of debauchery personified.

Sirius licked his lips slowly, resting the hand that was in Remus' trousers on the bed. "I remember being with a bloke. A Ravenclaw. That Andrew something. Dark hair, green eyes, plays Beater. I think he's in Ancient Runes with you." He sighed, his gaze lightening. "Cor, he was bloody fantastic, Remus. He was all muscle and tan skin and he had the most amazing tongue. He taught me a lot."

Remus tried to focus on his friend. "So...what happened? And why didn't you tell us?"

Shrugging, Sirius looked down. "I don't know. It didn't seem like a big deal at the time. It still doesn't. I like both sexes."

Silence. "Oh." Remus tried to smile as Sirius looked at him again. "It doesn't bother me. Well, er, except for leaving me like this to tell me about it." He gestured towards his uncomfortable crotch. "Are you going to whinge all night about how sensitive you are on the subject, or are you going to finish me off?"

"Have you ever been with a bloke?" Sirius seemed almost worried.

Remus blew his hair out of his eyes, fighting the urge to either roll them or narrow them. "No. I never thought about it, either, until this very moment. It's not appalling, though."

Sirius nodded, and then grinned a little crookedly. "Excellent." His eyes focused on Remus' crotch. "I want to taste you."

Closing his eyes, Remus groaned at the thought. "Please," he said softly. He was aching. He rolled over onto his back, and hands touched his belt buckle; he felt the item being removed in what seemed like years. Lying back even more, letting his head hit the pillow again, Remus tried to breathe evenly as the button was undone, the trousers being pushed open.

Sirius leaned forward and breathed hard against the confined crotch, making Remus swear as he felt the warmth through the fabric of his boxer shorts. He surged his body upwards as his movements begged Sirius to get on with it. He was entirely too clothed, and he felt as if he would die before getting off.

"Wait, Moony," Sirius said suddenly, and Remus nearly exploded in unresolved tension. And then, "Prongs?" Remus looked over through a haze to Sirius, and then he turned his head to see James facing them, staring at them with wide eyes. Or rather, he was staring at Remus. Sirius moved towards James. He was soon running a hand down James' arm, leaning forward to lick at a stubbly jaw. "Prongs, I want you. Moony does too, don't you?" Remus didn't answer, his desire running through him in waves, watching as Sirius pressed himself closer to James.

"I don'" James was struggling a little, leaning his head away from Sirius' searching lips, a hand in front of his chest, pushing at Sirius a little. "I'm not a poof. If you two are, then...well. Fine. But I'm not..."

Remus stared at him over Sirius' shoulder as Sirius spoke. "Prongs. Please. We can't do it without you."

James was shaking his head now, pushing at Sirius a little more forcibly. Remus could see the sweat on James' upper lip. The way the smallish body was trembling a little. The way that undisguised lust in the hazel eyes seemed to brighten the room, setting Remus' senses even more aflame.

"Please," he ventured quietly, knowing now that he wanted James to be a part of this possibly even more than he wanted Sirius.

And James looked at him, almost ignoring Sirius unbuttoning his shirt, and nodded slightly. "I'll just watch," he said quietly. He batted Sirius' hand away.

* * * * *

James was true to his word. He sat against the wall, watching as Sirius gave him a tipsy grin, pulling away to scoot next to Remus, who was lying on his back on the other side of the bed. Remus looked as if he were out of breath already, panting and tense as Sirius moved to the foot of the bed, taking hold of the waistband of Remus' trousers and pulling them off in one move with the red wolf-printed boxer shorts that Peter had gotten him for Christmas one year.

He didn't want to stare, but James couldn't help but take a rather long glance at Remus' cock, already hard and held almost immediately in Sirius' hand. The tip was glistening, but the rest was still darkened by the shadows that were cast across the bed from the curtains blocking parts of the moonlight.

Naked, James could see Remus' body all at once. He had seen it a few times, for Remus was usually immodest about dressing and undressing in front of his friends. But never had Remus gone so far as to be completely nude in front of them, though he also wasn't shy in the showers, which had separate walls but no doors or adequate-covering curtains. Quick flashes of a flaccid penis were all that James had seen of the intimate parts of Remus.

But this...this was completely different and new. Remus wasn't muscular, but he had a hardness to his body that most boys did not who didn't work out in some fashion. His nipples were large, James could see, and there was already a thin layer of hair on the bottom center of his chest, thinning only as it reached the broad expanse in the middle of his pectorals, thickening as it spread in a line down to the groin. It was more than James' own thin line below his navel, with not one hair on his own chest.

Remus was writhing a little, which was an arousing sight to James. The werewolf was biting his lower lips, an endearing habit, and his head was bent back into the pillow, eyes closed as Sirius licked and nipped and kissed along his chest.

James found that he could probably get off from watching Remus alone, without so much as a second glance at his other friend.

* * * * *

Feeling prickles of anticipation on his naked thighs, Remus looked down at Sirius as the black-haired boy made his way down, flicking a tongue into Remus' navel, nudging a nose through the trail of brown curls, securing lips on the side of the base of Remus' cock. Shuddering, Remus tensed and forcing his head back more, wanting to remember the feel of a wet tongue licking along the underside of his cock forever. He bit his lower lip as Sirius gripped the base of his cock and slowly spread the precome leaking out of the tip on his lips, stopping only to flick his tongue in the small hole at the end.

Remus moaned as he felt Sirius' hot mouth close around the head of his cock. It was exhilarating, the feeling of euphoria that spread through him after the sharp pleasure sent pangs out from his groin. He found that he still wanted James to participate. He opened his eyes, panting, and found James sitting against the wall, his mouth slightly open, his glasses a little askew, and his hand gripping his thigh. Remus licked his lips, trying to stop himself from bucking up into Sirius' mouth as he threaded the fingers of his right hand through the long black strands, using his left hand to reach out to the observing party.

James was staring at him, watching him, and Remus groaned James' name as he reached out even further, his fingers gripping into the covers that lay over James' leg.

* * * * *

Remus was reaching for him, and James was drawn as if he were solid metal, and Remus a strong magnet. Fingers brushed against each other as James involuntarily crept closer, scooting forward on his knees until Remus' outstretched hand could reach his face.

The fingers brushing against his jaw sent James' mind into a jumble of incoherent thoughts, and he lost his reasoning as he leaned forward to catch Remus' mouth with his own.

* * * * *

Sirius felt triumph surge through him as he sensed James moving to the head of the bed. He thought that there was a chance that his plan wouldn't work, but he had seen James look at Remus the entire night. He had felt certain that with the right bait, like a writhing, naked Remus, James could be coaxed into acting on whatever hidden feelings were lying beneath the surface of his gruff, loud, somewhat-shallow exterior.

And this was just an extra bonus for Sirius, anyway. He DID like both sexes, and he had wanted to experiment with his best friends without the worry of messing up his friendship for a long time. The scent of arousal, the feeling of hot flesh in his mouth, and the knowledge that HE was making those sounds come out of Remus' mouth was intoxicating.

Remus moaned loudly into James' mouth as Sirius sucked strongly, taking Remus in as deep as he could and running his tongue along the underside of the cock.

* * * * *

Even if this was the one time that this would happen, James knew that he had to take advantage of this moment. He explored Remus' mouth with his tongue. Remus didn't taste like firewhisky, which he knew that he himself tasted of. He also didn't taste like chocolate, which he had imagined would be practically seeping out of Remus' own tongue.

Instead, Remus tasted both sweet and sour, the former from the sugar in the tea that they had had before going to bed and the latter from not brushing since that morning. It was completely useless, trying to deny the way that Remus moaned into his mouth, setting off an explosion of pleasurable nerves in his chest and his groin. It was insanity to take himself away from this heaven, this movement of tongue and lips and teeth that grabbed onto his lower lip and sucked.

Remus grunted, raising his left hand to run fingers through the short hairs on the back of James' neck, pulling him closer. He ran his tongue along Remus' small, straight teeth, rubbing it along the smooth tongue that reached for his own. He pulled his mouth away to secure his lips on Remus' jaw, licking and kissing his way down as his hands ran of their own accord across Remus' chest and stomach. He reached a nipple and flicked it experimentally with his tongue, eliciting a loud moan from Remus.

Before he knew it, he was down next to Sirius, almost pushing his friend aside in his haste to have his own taste of Remus. Sirius grinned at him and moved over to push his own boxer shorts off, but James only watched for a second before looking down at Remus' cock, still wet from Sirius' saliva.

* * * * *

It was hot. Sirius didn't think that the room, and the scene, could get any hotter than watching James suck Remus off. He fisted himself as he watched, standing now at the edge of the bed, noticing the emotions and lust pass over Remus' face as he bared his teeth at a particular tongue swipe.

James, too, looked as if he were enjoying it. He had his eyes closed, his glasses hanging almost at the end of his nose. He was sweating, still fully clothed, but as much as Sirius wanted to see James without the obscuring items, he knew that the scene before him would dissolve if he tried to get involved now. So he just watched, following the movement of James' head with his eyes, relishing in the sensations as his hand moved over his cock, his ears filled with Remus' pants and moans.

Remus came rather quickly, his fingers clutching James' hair as his hips jerked up. Sirius didn't see a drop of come; it disappeared into James' mouth and down the throat as his Adam's apple bobbed up and down. He used his left hand to caress his own balls as his right hand moved swiftly over his aching cock. He pulsed a second later, his come spilling out over his hand, some dripping onto the floor.

He collapsed in a heap next to Remus' still-shaking body, watching as James settled on the other side. A smile danced in Remus' brown eyes as the werewolf took Sirius' hand and brought it to his mouth, licking the come off slowly, his lids heavy, the corners of his mouth twitching upward. Thank you, the warm brown eyes seemed to say, but no thanks were needed. Sirius had his night of fun, and he did what he had set out to do. He smiled back at Remus and closed his eyes, resting his head on the pillow next to his friend.

* * * * *

Remus knew that James wouldn't let anyone touch him. He could see the frustration in James' face as the black-haired boy rolled onto his back next to the wall, closing his eyes in the attempt to try forgetting what had happened this night.

Sirius was already snoring lightly, and Remus felt a new surge of affection for him. He would always be rash and abrupt and a bit rude, but he would always be Remus' friend.

James was something more than that, though, but James also was of the opinion that normalcy was the best way to live to find happiness. He would continue, Remus knew, to chase Lily Evans. He would grow up and marry and have children. He would become an Auror. He would fight for what he believed in and probably die trying to save those he loved. He would not fall in love with a male werewolf and live out his life in a permanent cycle of sadness and regret.

And so when James' hand touched his in the darkness, and then grabbed hold, Remus smiled.