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Shadow on the Sundial

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Most days Remus doesn’t think about it. Not that he doesn’t miss Sirius, it’s just that he doesn’t always dwell on how much. He goes through the day and does normal thing like picking up eggs and milk from the market, or buying a paper. He does crossword puzzles and reads books, mostly nonfiction, and generally lives his life. And he misses, misses, misses Sirius as he does these things, but he doesn’t dwell on it.

Today is not most days. Today is Remus’ birthday, and while Sirius’ birthday will be a sorrowful event next summer, his own birthday hits him like an unexpected blow to the gut. He wakes up early that morning - the sun hasn’t quite risen - and thinks, Today is my birthday. I’m thirty-five years old today. And then he thinks, Sirius, and it isn’t his mind that thinks of his lover but his whole being.

He curls up in bed around his pillow, unsure whether or not he’s pretending its Sirius’ body against his, and aches. He aches too much for tears, and is too tired for them anyway. But it’s worse, in a way, to not have those tears, to not have anger to blunt the edge of his pain this time.

Remus buries his head further into the pillow and tries to catch Sirius’ scent. He breathes in and out and in and out deliberately until Molly comes up to make sure he is awake and wish him a proper, Happy birthday.