Harry Potter, Skins (The Bodies Under Siege Remix)

Title: Skins (The Bodies Under Siege Remix) [Remus/Sirius]
Rating/Warnings: R for slash and self-mutilation.
Summary: Sirius doesn’t believe in apologies, but it’s going to take something huge to make up for the Shack incident. Meanwhile, with his big secret revealed, Remus is creating new ones.
AN: Done for the 2004 Remix Redux, original story Skins by Casira. I’d cheerfully link you it, if I could dig it up anyplace, but Casira seems to have fallen off the face of the internet.

Skins (The Bodies Under Siege Remix)

Sirius had never apologized to anybody in his whole life. He suspected that he was actually incapable of doing it, whether it was because he was almost always right or because he was a Black, he wasn’t sure. Sometimes he regretted things that happened, like the time he’d broken Peter’s arm by twisting just a bit too hard or the time he’d rebounded a Bludger poorly and Evans got a black eye the day before the Yule Ball, but the actual words ‘I’m sorry’ would pass through the lips of Sirius Orion Black right after Voldemort got down on one knee in the Great Hall and professed his secret love for Dumbledore.

Of course it didn’t matter, Sirius reflected, because if there was ever a time for an apology, this was most certainly not it. He’d known that on his own, even before the first thing Remus had said when Sirius’d shown up at the Infirmary was “If you’ve come over here to apologize, I’m going to rip your throat out.”

Although, upon reflection, “Snivellus only would’ve got what he deserved!” might not have been the best response.

In place of apologies, Sirius focused on reparation, although sometimes the ratio of damage to penance was comprehensible only to him. Everyone knew why Sirius was writing extra essays while Peter’s arm was in a sling, but there were only two people who knew why Lily’s crush had dropped his date at the last second and taken Lily to the Ball, three if you counted Sirius’ fist.

Sirius’ fists weren’t buying him out of this disaster, not that Sirius hadn’t tried. With James pretending he didn’t exist, Peter forbidden to talk to him, and Remus refusing to leave the Infirmary, Sirius beat the hell out of quite a few people, starting with Severus and working his way down to the Hufflepuff who looked at him funny in the corridor.

Already walking the fine line of expulsion, Sirius was forced to give up this initial strategy, satisfying as it was. He sank into deep meditation over exactly what form his atonement could take other than violence, but he was still undecided by the third day of Remus self-imposed exile.

“I mean, what’s the price for near death? Less than for actual death, right?”

“I’ve told you over and over that I’m not speaking to you!” James shouted from his desk.

“And should I take into account that Remus doesn’t even like him? Or, once you pass minor injury level, does that stop mattering? Is it more important if I hate him, because I set the event in motion, or if Remus does, because he’s the one who did the near-killing?”

“If you don’t shut up,” James said, “there’s going to be a NOT near-killing RIGHT HERE!”

“I’ll never figure out what this is worth,” Sirius sighed, flopping down onto his back and staring up at the canopy of his bed. “There’s too many factors.”

“FACTORS!” James roared, leaping to his feet and sending his chair clattering to the floor. “You want FACTORS?! I’ll give you FACTORS! Factor one: you are a FUCKWIT!”

“True,” Sirius said without moving or looking at James, “but not helpful.”

“Factor two: you told the person we hate most at Hogwarts the one secret you swore a sacred oath never to tell anyone ever no matter what!”

“Good job with the broken-pact boils, by the way,” Sirius shifted a little. “Very painful. Brilliant work.”

“Factor three: you sent Snape to the Shack knowing full well that there was no way Remus could control the wolf, that he would probably be killed! Factor four: if we would have got caught as Animagi, we not only would have been expelled, we might actually do time in Azkaban! Azkaban, Sirius! Factor Six…”

“You’re on five,” Sirius said.

“Factor Shut The Hell Up,” James snapped in reply, “if you’d gotten your way, Remus would be a murderer right now! And it wouldn’t matter to him that it wasn’t his fault or that he couldn’t have stopped it, you know Remus, he’d take it all on himself and wake up every day for the rest of his life calling himself a killer!”

Sirius didn’t say anything.

“I mean, fucking hell, Sirius!” James said, anger thinning so that glimpses of hurt and confusion showed through. “If you wanted Snape dead, why didn’t you just do it yourself instead of dragging Remus into it? How could you use him like that? Like he’s a dog you can just sic on people?”

“It just happened,” Sirius said.

“Just happened?! I’ll tell you what just happened,” James went back to yelling, scrunching his eyes shut in fury, “I nearly got EATEN, that’s what just happened! I got BETRAYED by my BEST FRIEND and then almost KILLED by my other BEST FRIEND! There’s all your fucking FACTORS, Sirius, so you tell me what you think that’s all worth! My life and Snape’s and Remus’, what’s that all WORTH to you?!”

“It’s worth me spending next moon alone,” Remus said from the doorway.

Sirius turned his head to the side and looked Remus over. He was paler and more exhausted than he’d been after any moon in a year, and Sirius could see his hands shaking from across the room. The faded lines of three parallel scratches ran down over his left cheek and down his neck, disappearing into his robes. The sight made Sirius want to get up and smash something into tiny pieces, but he felt too heavy to even turn his head away.

“It’s worth me maybe spending every moon alone,” Remus said.

“No,” James said.

“Don’t, James.” Remus closed his eyes and leaned against the doorframe. “I never should’ve let you do this. We should end it before…it’s over.”

“NO,” James said, louder, and Remus’ eyes opened again. “You aren’t going to tear yourself up in that shack every moon because of Fuckwit Black! I won’t let you!”

“Better me than you.” Remus was answering James, but staring at Sirius. “And you can’t stop me.”

James didn’t answer, but he clenched his teeth so tightly that the tendons in his neck bulged. Remus went to his bed without saying anything else and climbed in, yanking the hangings shut behind him.

Remus said nothing directly to Sirius for days, but Sirius developed the idea that he could atone for his mistake with good behavior, or at least good behavior with Remus actually present.

The experiment was beginning to wear thin by the next week, when Remus was still not speaking to Sirius, and Snape had figured out that Sirius was attempting self-control. Potions, their shared class and the class that Snape was most overbearing in anyhow, was by far the worst.

Sirius said nothing when Snape nitpicked every step of Sirius’ potion preparation. Sirius gripped his quill tighter when Peter’s cauldron geysered, covering him in white froth, and Snape asked if it reminded Sirius of anything he’d done lately. Sirius gritted his teeth when Snape asked him casually if James always topped or if he let Sirius have a go once in a while.

But when Snape started humming “Werewolves of London” as Remus was going past him out the door, Sirius snapped. He was on Snape before anyone else could move, slamming him against the wall by the collar with one hand while the other fist was coming forward in a blur to split his lip, but Snape’s smirk didn’t disappear even under the blood. Driven beyond any ability to reason, Sirius drew back his fist again.

Someone caught his arm with enough strength to halt it entirely, and Sirius whipped his head around to see Remus gripping his wrist.

“Stop,” Remus said, and the relief of hearing his voice, no matter how angry, peeled away some of Sirius’ rage. “Stop, you’ve already…just stop.”

Sirius reluctantly let go of Snape, and Remus drew his wand and cast an off-hand Praeclude that resealed Snape’s lip and dissipated the swelling with a speed that made Sirius wonder when Remus had gotten so good at healing charms.

It didn’t take long for Remus to find out that Sirius had waited only until he was out earshot before laying into Snape all over again, and the silence continued. James’ mood with Sirius didn’t improve either as Remus refused to change his mind about the next moon.

On the up side, James was still so angry by the time the next full moon rolled around, that there was no way he could possibly get angrier when he found out that Sirius had nicked his Invisibility Cloak and was going to the Shack despite Remus’ express wish to be alone.

Sirius changed to Padfoot as soon as he cleared the castle, wanting human scent to be nowhere near the Shack or the tunnel for when Moony changed. It was a bit of a struggle to maneuver a stick to the Willow’s knot with Padfoot’s mouth, but Sirius managed and slipped into the opening. He marked the tunnel with Padfoot’s scent every few yards, just in case any smells from last month still lingered in the dirt.

Padfoot crouched just inside the tunnel’s outlet to the Shack to wait for Remus to start changing, shivering with the need to act because sitting still meant he had to hear himself thinking. Forcing Padfoot to keep still, Sirius paced mentally, treading over a set of thoughts that had become very familiar this month.

Hate Snape, s’all his fault, skulking about and calling Remus names, hexing us when we’ve got our backs turned, wish I could rip his smirking lips off, should’ve done it myself, ‘cept then he’d be dead and I’d be in Azkaban, but I would’ve kept Remus’ secret then, can’t believe I’m doing this, Remus is going to kill me tomorrow, probably not speak to me for days and days again and that’s the worst thing ever, except for him doing this alone and coming back hurt and sick, I can’t stand that, it makes me want to kill something, wouldn’t do this for anybody but Remus, not even James…

Padfoot froze, ears flat against his head, as he realized the implications of that last thought. It wasn’t the first one like it he’d had recently, in fact he’d been feeling strange things around Remus since long before the Snape incident. All term he’d been catching himself watching Remus just a little too long, sitting just a little too close, finding flimsy excuses to wrestle with him. When the dreams started up, Sirius found various girls to do indecent things to, and at the height of his desperation even sought out a Ravenclaw boy who he’d heard people whispering about, but none of it proved anything except that Dream Remus had more of an effect on Sirius than anybody in waking life ever had.

Sirius pushed the thoughts away hurriedly, not ready to deal with any of this or what it meant or what he was going to do if Remus really did hate him forever. Sirius forced himself to focus on something simple.

Hate Snape hate Snape hate Snape…

Padfoot waited until he heard the gasps for air that meant Remus was too far into the transformation to order Sirius back out. He crept out of the tunnel just in time to see a swath of fur erupt through Remus’ skin and pour down his back, Remus’ spine arching as he lay doubled over on the floor. Eerie creaks and pops echoed off the bare walls of the Shack as Remus’ skeleton broke itself and reformed, and a sickening crack marked the moment when his knees bent themselves backwards.

When it was over, Moony lay on his side panting for a moment before struggling to his feet. He stuck his snout in the air and snuffled the air, then began growling. Padfoot stayed where he was, belly on the floor, ears pressed against his head, and whined softly.

Moony charged, shouldering Padfoot roughly and sending him skidding across the floor several feet. Growling louder, the wolf head-butted Padfoot and slapped at him with huge paws, pushing him around. Padfoot made no move to fight back, merely rolled over and took Moony’s punishment, paws in the air and throat bared.

Lunging forward, Moony seized the loose skin of Padfoot’s throat between his teeth. Padfoot closed his eyes and Sirius suppressed Padfoot’s urge to struggle.

I deserve it, Sirius thought dully.

Moony didn’t bite down, however, just stood there for a long moment, Padfoot’s pulse pounding in his jaws, and Padfoot could feel Moony’s snarls vibrating through his entire limp body.

Finally Moony snorted a little and released Padfoot with a final shake of his head, but Padfoot didn’t move. He stayed on his back, whining, while Moony padded towards the entrance to the tunnel and took a few steps inside. After a moment, Moony’s head popped back out of the entrance and he barked grudgingly.

Padfoot rolled over quickly and shook the dust out of his fur before trotting over to Moony, head and tail still drooping. Moony leaned his nose down and snuffled Padfoot’s neck ruff, but didn’t nip him again, and Padfoot’s tail wagged slowly, grazing the ground.

With a final snort into Padfoot’s fur, Moony turned himself around smoothly and headed back down the tunnel, ordering Padfoot to follow with an impatient whuff.

* * * * * *

“I told you not to come here.”

Sirius cracked open an eye and squinted in the morning light filtering through the Shack’s dirt-streaked windows. Turning his head slightly and wincing as his neck popped and stretched, Sirius found Remus, wrapped in a shabby blanket, hugging his knees tightly and glaring down at him.

Sirius pulled himself to a sitting position and flexed various muscles, gauging how much he was going to hurt when he tried to stand up. When he put his hands over his head to stretch, Sirius gasped as his side lit on fire.

“What are you doing here?”

Sirius lowered his arms and unbuttoned his shirt, vaguely amused as always by the way that his clothes reappeared intact after a transformation, no matter how shredded the skin underneath was.

“Don’t ignore me, Sirius.” Remus’ voice was getting softer and more dangerous with each question.

Sirius said nothing, just pulled aside the cotton to reveal winter-pale skin scored by angry red scratches, running from his abdomen around his left side. Sirius touched fingertips to the scratches and they came away dotted with blood.

Remus’ hand shot out of the blanket and seized Sirius’ wrist.

“You’re hurting me,” Sirius said, not trying to pull away. He glanced from the scratches on his chest to Remus’ arm and noticed something strange.

“What are you doing here, Sirius?” Remus repeated.

Half a dozen or more thin cuts, mostly healed but still obvious against Remus’ pale forearm. The cuts were identical in length and depth, and were exactly parallel.

“What’s that on your arm, Remus?” Sirius asked. Remus tried to jerk his arm back under the blanket, but Sirius twisted his hand in Remus’ grip and caught his wrist. The two boys glared at each other for a long moment.

“Answer my question,” Remus said.

“Answer mine,” Sirius replied, “and I’ll answer yours.”

Remus tried to pull his hand back again, but Sirius held on and jerked back. They tugged back and forth, the scuffle causing the blanket to slip off Remus and reveal a very similar series of cuts on Remus’ thighs and upper arms.

Sirius froze, staring, and Remus took advantage of the lull by wrenching his wrist from Sirius’ grip and snatching the blanket back up around his shoulders.

“What are those cuts?” Sirius asked as calmly as he could.

“I just spent a night clawing and biting myself,” Remus snapped. “What do you think they are?”

“Those aren’t from last night.” Sirius shook his head. “They’re almost healed. Let me see them.”

“No.” Remus tugged the blanket closed tighter and glared at Sirius. “I told you not to come, what’re you doing here?”

“I spent last night with you so that you’d claw me instead of yourself, which you did and which I deserve,” Sirius answered. “Let me see the cuts.”

“No.” Remus dropped his gaze to the floor.

“Let me see,” Sirius repeated.


“Let me see.”


“Let me see.”

Remus’ voice grew a little less firm with every ‘no’, until by the fourteenth ‘let me see’ Remus let the blanket slide off his shoulders again and held out his arm for Sirius to see, his gaze not leaving the floor. Sirius reached out to run fingers over the raised skin and Remus shivered.

“You’ve been healing them,” Sirius said. “Why not just make them fade entirely?”

“Sometimes just seeing them makes me feel better,” Remus answered, twisting the blanket between the fingers of his free hand. “Other times…” he trailed off, pressing his lips tightly together.

“Other times you have to start all over,” Sirius finished.

Remus finally raised his eyes to look at Sirius, who was still staring down at the marred skin of Remus’ arm and rubbing gently at the cuts.

“If it’s bad enough,” Sirius continued, “you’ll start on someplace new entirely. Like here.” Sirius’ hand moved from Remus’ forearm up to the identical pattern across the top of his left shoulder. “Or here.” The other hand dropped to press against Remus’ thigh. “Just so long as they’re someplace you can see.”

“How do you know that?” Remus asked. The hand that he’d stretched out to Sirius was resting on the back of Sirius’ arm, and Sirius could feel Remus’ fingers shaking.

“Bella used to cut herself to get her mother’s attention,” Sirius shrugged, still brushing his fingers over Remus’ skin. “She’d cut the whole way up her arm to her shoulder and then wear sleeveless robes so everybody could see. Whose attention were you trying to get?”

“No, it wasn’t…everything was out of control,” Remus said softly, finally lifting his gaze from the floor and his pleading stare making something in Sirius’ chest twist tight. “Especially me. Even after, it didn’t fade this time and I remembered wanting to hurt Severus, wanting to make him bleed, how close I was to it, every time I saw him and I couldn’t stop it, I couldn’t get control back…all I wanted was to be in control of something.”

Sirius was suddenly aware of his hands on Remus, of the warm skin trembling underneath his palms and the pulse he could feel through his fingertips, of how intently Remus was staring at him. Sirius felt his breath catch in his throat as he realized that Remus was leaning forward into his touch, his whole body moving slowly across the space that separated them.

I’d only do this for Remus, Sirius caught himself thinking, and tried to squash the thought quickly, but it was much harder when the nearness of Remus was making Sirius’ arm hair stand on end.

“I just need to be in control,” Remus whispered, his face close enough that Sirius could see the amber rings in Remus’ irises that hadn’t faded this soon after his change-back.

“Remus,” Sirius said, a note of warning in his voice.

“Sirius,” Remus answered, giving a breathless inflection to the name that no one had ever given it before, and suddenly Sirius realized that Remus’ fingertips were tracing tiny circles on the back of his arm.

“Remus?” he asked quietly, hoping the single word could manage to communicate the combination of ‘you too?’ and ‘right now?’ and ‘are you sure?’ that Sirius really meant. The murmured ‘Sirius’ he got in reply sent chills down his spine as he realized that the answer to all those questions was ‘yes’.

Sirius ached to lean across the last inches and kiss Remus, wanted it so much that he could practically taste the other boy on his tongue, but even Sirius wasn’t thick enough to have missed the lesson about Remus’ need for control. He forced himself to wait for Remus to make the decision, struggling so hard to remain still that he was positive that Remus could feel his hands shaking.

Please hurry before I fuck this up, Sirius pled silently.

Sirius didn’t know whether the message scrolled across his eyes or what, although Remus was certainly staring at him intently enough to read it if it had, but Remus tilted his head and pressed his lips awkwardly to Sirius’.

It wasn’t earth-shattering and it wasn’t fireworks, hell, with both boys leaning forward on their knees and fighting stiff muscles, it wasn’t even comfortable, but when Sirius opened his mouth to sigh in relief and accidentally brushed his tongue against Remus’ upper lip, they both froze.

Did I just fuck this up? Sirius thought in the second before Remus pushed forward suddenly, knocking Sirius onto his back underneath him. Sirius stared up at Remus, realizing that the hand that had been on Remus’ thigh was now trapped between them and pressed very close to bits of Remus that Sirius was trying hard not to think about. Remus made a soft noise in his throat and Sirius swallowed, thinking about his own bits which he was trying, hard, not to pay attention to. Remus’ face was so close that when Sirius drew a breath, the tips of their noses touched.

Remus kissed Sirius with considerably more confidence, or perhaps just more gravity since he was on top, but either way it lasted quite a bit longer and when Remus lifted his head to gasp for air, Sirius’ lips felt pleasantly raw. He could feel Remus’ fingers clutching the collar of his shirt, warm against the back of his neck.

He ran the tip of his tongue over his lower lip and watched in fascination as Remus’ eyes tracked his tongue’s path closely, the unblinking stare of a predator. Sirius repeated the slide of his tongue, more slowly, and could actually see Remus’ pupils dilate.

“Oh god, Remus,” Sirius whispered, his trapped hand flexing, and Remus rubbed against his palm. Sirius saw Remus’ eyes flicker down to where his shirt was caught in Remus’ fists.

“Skin,” Remus ordered, voice raw like Sirius’ lips. “I want yours. All of it. Right now.”

Sirius pushed himself up despite protesting muscles, pressing his chest against Remus’ as he sat up enough for Remus to tug his shirt off his shoulders. Sirius arched a little as Remus’ fingers brushed down his back, baring his throat. Remus bent his head, and Sirius felt the roughness of his tongue smooth over the bruises Moony’s teeth had left the night before.

Sirius tilted his head back further, the invitation clear, and Remus gave a possessive growl in answer before biting down over the marks that were already there, the same way Moony had claimed Padfoot. A low, soft moan slid out of Sirius’ throat, a noise he barely recognized as his own.

Remus froze suddenly, then scrambled back off Sirius and crouched at his feet, eyes wild.

“Get away,” he gasped, “I could’ve…I nearly…oh fuck, Sirius, get away, I’m going to hurt you…”

Sirius pushed himself the rest of the way to a sitting position, gritting his teeth as he bent elbows that had been hyper-extended to support his weight for too long.

Sirius was a smart boy, and he had noticed an interesting pattern in the way his life worked. Every time he opened his mouth, he dug himself a little deeper into trouble. In most cases, he plowed on regardless, figuring he could talk his way out of whatever trouble he caused, but this time it wasn’t house points or a row with Evans that was at stake. This time it was Remus, and Sirius had finally worked out that he wanted Remus, wanted him more than he wanted a motorbike or a decent family or to be James’ brother for real or to do something so brilliant that wizards would talk about him forever, more than all of those things put together and then some, and he’d do anything that would mean Remus kissing him like that again, and some more biting would be all to the good as well.

Which is why he decided that the last thing he was going to do was to let a bunch of stupid words bugger it all up.

Sirius shook his shirt the rest of the way down to his wrists, then tugged the cuffs over his hands without bothering to unbutton them and dropped the shirt on the floor beside him. Remus opened his mouth to say something, but no words came out as he watched Sirius drop hands to the button of his trousers. When Sirius sat up on his knees and pushed everything out of the way in one go, Remus’ crouch wobbled so badly that he tipped backwards and sat down hard.

Sirius’ seduction ground to a halt when he realized that he’d forgotten to take off his shoes. With a frustrated grunt, he twisted around and tugged his trainers off without fooling with the laces. Hindrances removed, trousers and underwear were out of the way and tossed in a heap on top of the shirt before you could say ‘gnuhuuuuh’.

But Remus said it anyway.

Sirius crossed the short distance separating him from Remus in a lithe crawl. Remus tried to shrink backwards, but Sirius pressed forward too quickly, bending his head to rub his cheek against Remus’.

After a moment’s hesitation, Remus rubbed back, and Sirius turned his head to kiss him, watching with satisfaction how Remus’ eyes fluttered closed. Sirius pressed into Remus, forcing him further and further back, until Remus couldn’t hold himself up anymore and his shoulders hit the floor with a thump, Sirius’ weight pressing him into the blanket underneath. Sirius shivered when he realized it was Remus’ erection digging into his leg, furthermore realizing that if he shifted just that little bit more to the left…

Remus arched and his eyes flew open when Sirius’ cock met his, and he made a noise that made the hair on Sirius’ neck stand on end. Wanting to make Remus make that noise again, Sirius dropped a hand lower, snaking it between them and, after a breathless moment of hesitation, awkwardly stroked Remus. Sirius saw a flash of teeth and thought he might finally have gone too far…

…but it was Remus urging him on with a grin, and Sirius was grinning back with relief even as Remus reached up and pulled him down by the hair to kiss him again, straining for control even when he was on the bottom and Sirius would have laughed at that thought if Remus hadn’t been sucking the air out of his lungs.

And then Sirius couldn’t think at all because Remus’ other hand was clutching his arm and pulling him closer and he was thrusting into Sirius’ hand, hard and slick with sweat, and every time either one of them thrust Sirius’ cock pressed into Remus’ until Sirius couldn’t tell which one of them he was stroking.

And then Remus’ hands clenched against Sirius and he arched up hard enough that his shoulders left the floor for a few trembling moments and Sirius gave a few more strokes, his hand covered in Remus, making everything hot and sogood and ohgod…

Remus’ shoulders hit the ground again, and Sirius flopped bonelessly on top of him, cheek tucked into the space underneath Remus’ chin and ear pressed to Remus’ chest, the comfortable pounding of Remus’ heart driving all the concerns and doubts out of Sirius’ head. Sirius felt peaceful for the first time in weeks, and too heavy to ever move again. Remus’ hands were ghosting soothingly down his back and arms.

“Oh,” Remus said suddenly, and it wasn’t a good kind of ‘oh.’

Sirius heaved his head up to see where Remus’ fingers had stopped on his arm, and he caught sight of the parallel cuts on the underside of Remus’ forearm.

Right next to a matching set dug into his own upper arm.

“Oh,” Remus said again. Sirius’ gaze drifted down to Remus’ hand, where dark half-moons of blood and skin were darkening the underneaths of his nails. “Oh god, Padfoot…”

Sirius could feel Remus tensing to move and that was just not on. He reached up and took Remus’ hand, then pulled it to his lips and looked Remus right in the eye while he sucked his blood off Remus’ fingers. Remus watched with a closed expression, but Sirius very pointedly wrapped his fingers around Remus’ before laying his head back down, nestling against Remus as close as possible so as to discourage moving. After a moment, Remus relaxed underneath him and Sirius let out the breath he’d been holding and let his eyes slip closed.

“I’ll heal that for you then,” Remus said. “I’ve gotten quite good with all the practice.”

“Don’t, leave it,” Sirius shrugged. “You said it makes you feel better to see them.”

“I didn’t mean…” Remus trailed off. “It’s just that sometimes lately, I can’t stand being in my own skin.”

“You can have mine,” Sirius said.

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