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"Rules." Kingsley broke the chatter of excitement in the Gryffindor Common Room, every seat was taken, as was every lap and the tops of every table. "As money is being wagered, we must agree upon some rules."

Sirius laughed and stretched a little, popping his back, "Oh gods, here we go ..."

"For one, I suggest that Severus Snape must never be aware what is at stake. So, no promising him half your winnings if you get him to snog in the corridor."

Lily piped up, "Good one! And no imperio!"

Sirius scoffed, "You think I'd imperio Snape to win a-" he smirked, considering. "Okay, fine, no imperio."

"No love potions, those are illegal anyhow."

"As though I need them!"

James laughed, adding, "And no felix felicis, either!"

"The kiss needs to be public. More then just a peck, but a proper kiss. A full minute if you can manage. Because there needs to be witnesses. At least three, preferably more, so make it last so that you give us time to see."

"Yeah, yeah, okay ..." Sirius steeled himself. It's a lot of money, a tonne of money. "But you can't cramp my style, either, a man needs some room to work."

"I think for the wagers people have made, it’s worth being allowed a look."

"Then I'll send off some sort of signal ..." Sirius thought, rubbing his stubble-laced chin for effect. "I'm sure Remus can figure that out, can't you?"

Remus flipped a page of a book with a wry smile, "I think the four horsemen of the apocalypse will be signal enough."

"Right then. So if everyone agreed. Before the new year? That gives you three months."

"Oh ha ha ha ..." Sirius took a deep breath and spread his arms, "I accept. You will all be funding my new flat come June."

Many of the students snickered, if they won, well, promises were made.

James stood, "Alright. Sirius Black ... you agree to the terms of the wager?"

Sirius tossed his glossy hair casually and smirked, "Completely, totally, utterly. Severus Snape will become half of one of the lovey-dovey couples he so publicly protests by the last day of this year!"

"Wow." Kingsley raised an eyebrow, "I just wanted to see him get kissed properly, and you’ve just implied he’ll equal half of a couple in love. You have intention in falling in love yourself?"

Sirius rolled his eyes, "Please, Kingsley, remember who you're talking to here."

"Hey ... you're the one who said it."

"You know what I mean, he'll be ... fluttery, all star-eyed and smoochy. That's what I mean."

"Then that's what you should say. Because that's enough of a technicality that any Ravenclaw would fight you over."

"Ravenclaws?" Sirius raised his arched eyebrows in a sly, feline manner, "I see, inter-house fellowship over my greatest triumph? So be it, I'll be richer than my moron parents before new years."

"We'll all be looking forward to helping the Sirius Black home-stay fund ... just remember what you've promised us."

"Yes, yes, don't worry, you'll have entertainment galore."

James fell back into the chair, overcome with laughter, "Sorry ... Snivellus being smoochy? Merlin-"

Kingsley snapped his notebook closed with one hand, "Very well, those of you who still want to place bets, you have until midnight tonight. A few members of staff wanted to be sure exactly what you were committing to before placing a bet."

"Staff!?" Sirius blinked, "who, exactly!?"

"Ahhh … confidentiality my friend."

"You're evil. Pure tall, dark, shiny-headed evil."

"Thank you."

A crowd thronged around Kingsley, all of them with bills and coins out, ready to place their bets as Sirius overlooked it all with casual, careless elegance. Lupin stood, crossing his arms over his thin chest, "And do you have a plan for this stunt?"

"Of course!"

"And what, pray tell is that?"

"I've got to convince Severus that I'm not the arrogant bastard he thinks I am."

"How?"

"Lie ..."

*            *            * 

It was Monday morning, and Sirius had one arm full of books and papers, sauntering through the library, drawing admiring looks from every corner, almost every corner.

The window seats were few and far between, but there was one, since his first year, which Severus had monopolized for his own. With his legs outstretched before him and his back against the wood frame, Severus was reading from one of the books on his lap, every now and again looking up, out the window when something caught his eye, or there was a conversation to overhear.

Black, seemingly unaware his favorite prey was so close, stopped out of view of the crowd and set his books down with a thud, breathing angrily as he tossed papers about, seizing one and reading it, grinding his teeth as he did.

The Slytherin twitched reflexively at the sound, his head snapping up to see Sirius Black. He was accustomed to the Gryffindor making a scene, well, he had thrown his books down. Severus found even the simplest thing of the young man standing and grinding his teeth rather odd. Usually the boy didn’t hold back, he just yelled out what was bothering him, and often its name was Snape.

"Fuckingidiots-" Sirius growled, crumpling the paper, tossing it in the trash can and trying to set fire to it. The fire-proofed paper just smoothed itself out and shook any firesparks off easily, landing in Sirius's hand again. He tossed it on the floor, stepping on it, trying to tear it in half, but it refused to. Finally he summoned the paper, folding it up as far as he could, in tiny, tiny pieces and went to a bookshelf, thick with dust. The tall, athletic boy climbed the adjacent, floating ladder and shoved the tiny paper under a long forgotten book, stared at it as though to make sure it would stay there, and climbed down.

Sirius sighed heavily and sat at the desk, head in his hands, quiet for a long, strange moment, just breathing deeply before he stood, books shoved under his strong arm, looked around and left in a hurry, robes flaring gallantly.

Severus considered Sirius’s behavior most strange. He came to the library to read a letter? And then rather of hiding it someplace where only he had access to it, he left it someplace public, like the library? Well, such things are meant to be found then. Severus reasoned, getting up slowly, book in hand as if to put it away, making sure no one was watching before he summoned the book on the top shelf, allowing the piece of paper to fall to the floor at his feet, which he bent down to pick up. He opened the book and placed the paper inside, unfolding it, pretending it was reading from the dusty book.

It was a piece of expensive parchment, engraved with the Black insignia, and laced with perfect, eerily copperplate handwriting.

Sirius,

Your mother and I have, as tradition dictates, come to review your recent disowning six months after the fact. Although our position has softened somewhat regarding your tastes in muggle music and culture (such mistakes can be kept quiet until you unlearn them), the central reason for your removal from the family remains nonnegotiable: if you insist on harboring a sick fascination with some halfblood in your year, even if he is in Slytherin, you will never be allowed back into the family.

As a matter of course, your affection for the freak would be tested under veritaserum administration. However, if you can transfer your affections to someone (even a male) of nobler birth, we will reconsider reinstating the previous terms of your inheritance.
 

- Madam and Mssr. Black.

p.s. Do not attempt to destroy this letter, it is impervious.


Severus frowned a little, he had half expected to read Lupin’s name, or some subtle reference to his kind. But no, the halfblood in question was apparently Slytherin. Perhaps the Blacks were mistaken. Little goody-Gryffindor never had interests outside his own house. Perhaps Sirius was just covering himself with a lie so that his parents didn’t know the actual truth about his interests with not just a halfblood, but a … well. Severus shivered a little. He folded the paper back up and put it in his pocket, smirking a little, there was nothing quite like ruining Sirius’s day more other then confronting him, which he was on his way to do once he packed up his things from the window seat.

The Gryffindor had not gone far outside the library, he was on a balcony just outside the main entrance, smoke curling up into the sky from a contraband muggle cigarette between his fingers, which he raised to his lips, sucked on and released, exhaling smoke unevenly. His books had been kicked into a corner of the balcony.

"No smoking on school grounds." The Slytherin prefect said, keeping himself a good thirty feet away from the other young man. 

Sirius blew a long stream of smoke from between his lips in reply, not even looking at Snape.

"Black!" Severus insisted, "Put that out, now."

"Mind your own damn business will you, Snivelly?"

"It’s my business when you’re breaking school rules. Put it out. Now."

Sirius shifted his weight from one foot to the other, still not looking at Snape as he ground the cigarette out on the stone ledge his arms rested on and dropped the butt of it beside his shoes. "Right, there you go, run off and polish your stupid little badge, freak."

Severus smirked, "Oh, but that’s not all. I have something of yours, Black."

"Then go add it to your collection and fuck off, Snape. I'm not in the mood for this."

"Very well. Perhaps I’ll give it to your brother, maybe he’ll be able to help you with your problem."

Sirius laughed harshly, "You're my problem Snape, do me a favor and drown yourself in the lake before I do it for you."

"Pleasant as ever, Black." Severus walked closer, putting the letter down on the banister before walking out. If only to prove that he wanted Sirius to know, that he knew

Sirius froze, and snatched up the letter. In a flash he was somehow in front of Snape, hissing with venom in his voice, "YOUWEREWATCHINGME!?"

"Very careless to put your letter in a public place, Mr Black."

"It wasn't public, no one's moved that book for four hundred years and you of all people decided to SNOOP!?"

"The library is in fact, by definition a public place. One can only assume you wanted someone to find it. Take pity on your sad little story. Might I suggest disposing of it in the lake? I’m sure the giant squid wouldn’t mind chewing on it for a good, few hundred years."

Sirius glared, then paused, "You read it ..." he went a little white in the face although his fierce glare didn't fade.

"It hardly matters. It’s clearly all a façade anyway."

The handsome boy, however, just nodded, "Obviously-" he muttered through bloodless lips, stepping away. "Forget it ..." he turned on his heel, going brilliant red up to his hairline and almost ran away from the half-blooded Slytherin.

"Sirius?" Severus called after the other young man, a little too friendly.

Sirius was gone, leaving his books behind, the library doors clattering shut behind his sudden exit.

Severus sighed, turning to the objects Sirius left behind and took them up with his own, carrying them up the stairs to the main office for them to be reclaimed by their owner another time.

*                    *                    *

Half way into the lab during potions, of which Snape had been oddly paired up with Black by Slughorn, the Slytherin finally opened his mouth to say more then a few words that were not related to the lab or of him making lemon shavings, "What are you really trying to conceal from your family that you would make up such a lie to tell them you fancy a halfblood Slytherin? As if that would somehow lessen their anger."

Sirius paused, his glossy long hair covering his features as he replied, whispering as he sliced through roots with almost surgical precision for a boy who was usually so hyperactive, "Not that it's any of your business," he half hissed, swallowing hard, "but who says it's a lie?"

"I do. It’s ridiculous. Who, or what are you really trying to keep secret that is worth being disowned over anyway?"

Sirius tossed his hair out of his face as he bent closer to the roots, neatly segregating half of them, "Start adding those or it'll boil over, since you've stopped paying any attention." His jaw was set, determined and as he wiped his hands on the towel provided, they seemed a little shaky, "Stop acting like you know everything there is to know about me, alright? What's the next instruction?"

"Unicorn hair follicle." Severus answered the question and ignored the rest, giving his work just as much attention as he had been before. It wasn’t as though he really expected Sirius to answer him, but had somewhat expected for something to have slipped by now. 

Sirius swept his own hair back, tapping it with the wand to tie it neatly so that his own hair did not mix with the unicorn's. With his hair back, Black's mathematically perfect face seemed almost ... disarming, poetic and hypnotizing in it's beauty. "Whatever, you don't have to believe me, alright? It'd never make a fucking difference anyway" Sirius pinched the hair follicle with the floating tweezers, pulling the gleaming hair out of the moleskin it came in.

"I don’t believe you. But I believe I’ve made that point clear already. As whatever the real reason is, it must be much more interesting."

"Why the hell don't you believe me? I'm obviously not some pompous death eater who believes all that crap about blood superiority." Sirius ground his teeth a little, easing the unicorn hair slowly, letting the potion fizz just enough around it.

"For that very moral reason." Severus said, not feeling he needed to address that, in the eyes of the rest of the school or the world outside of Hogwarts, being a Slytherin was like training grounds for death eaters. Why would Sirius, anti-blood sureriority, been interested in one of them?

"You're the last person who'd ever understand anyway ... ironically enough." Sirius dropped the rest of the hair in, taking a sideways glance at Snape with a familiar narrowing of his eyes that from this angle seemed more like ... well, it wasn't a glare at any rate.

"Right." Severus said dryly, noting the reactions in his notes as they happened. He spoke to Sirius without reading the directions, his head and eyes down to his notebook as he wrote, "Give it three minutes before the next step."

Sirius looked around a little, as if to make sure no one was watching them before he whispered, bothered by the implication, "Why do you think I'm incapable of being in love?"

"Because all you need is a mirror, and you have all you care about." Severus breathed out his nose sharply.

Sirius frowned and looked over at Snape. "That's so ... bizarrely untrue I don't even know where to begin. That is ... fried in wrong sauce."

Severus was mildly impressed however that Sirius hadn’t actually yelled at him, he raised an eyebrow at that, "Fried in wrong sauce, even." He paused, "No, I’m wrong," he admitted freely, "If there is someone you love more then yourself, it’s Potter. And we shall not discuss how disgusting that is."

The pureblood sighed and rolled his eyes a little, stepping half a step closer as he whispered, "I'm stuck living with the guy for seven years, it's called making the best of a bad situation and no. Not ever. Not once, not now, not then, not on a cat, not in hat, I'd hang myself. Eww, and thank you for the added years of therapy with that mental image." Sirius grumbled, keeping an eye on the clock for the three minute mark.

"Interesting. For implying otherwise, you sure do follow him around a lot, eager to please like some sort of dog." But it was, very interesting. They were having a conversation. No yelling. No shoving. An odd, but actual, conversation. "There now, nearly time for the millilitre of salt water and rose oil."

"Which do you prefer, salt or roses?" Sirius sighed, dropping the topic of James for the moment as he watched the clock, hand hovering over the two ingredients.

"I’ll take the salt." Severus said, reaching over to the vial that stood in waiting in a wooden tray.

"Thought so-" Sirius murmured with a little grin, reaching over to the rose oil, their hands brushing for a second, Sirius biting his lip a little as he took the fragrant oil and held it above the swirling potion, ready to add it when Snape had his, "together? I mean ... same time?"

"Yes. Slowly. They must mix evenly." Severus said, counting the seconds in his head until he and Sirius began to pour their ingredients in together simultaneously.

Both ingredients were added in sync, swirling together, smelling of the sea and cultured gardens. "Not bad-" Sirius said, almost to himself as the scent rose and he stirred the cauldron carefully, seven times counter-clockwise. The heat of the steam put color in his high cheekbones as he looked at Snape sideways again.

It had happened before, but he could no longer ignore it, "What." Severus said, already regretting prompting Sirius to come up with something horrible to say while he sat on a stool, watching Sirius stir.

Sirius shrugged, "Nothing, what, you want me to act like a jerk?" he whispered, "because I'm really not up to it just now."

Severus folded his arms over his chest defensively, "No" he said, made uneasy anyway.

"Then let's just ... keep not drawing attention over here and everyone can assume we hate each other with a fraction of the work."

"What do you mean, drawing attention?" Severus was usually rather observant, but for this class period it had been only working on the lab, and being very mindful of Sirius’s smallest action.

"I said NOT drawing attention ... come on, you have to admit, flying under the radar like this is better than punching the shit out of each other, right?"

"What?" Severus unfolded his arms, confused, not knowing what they were even talking about anymore.

"I mean-" Sirius looked at him with those grey eyes of his, keeping his voice low as they were sitting close, "No one's paying attention to us, so we can just act ... normal instead of making a big deal about hating each other." He looked away with a small sigh, "Forget it."

"I thought your loathing was normal. Why would you bother to suggest otherwise?"

Sirius shifted away, going quiet for a second, "You really can be thick, you know?" He flipped the page in the textbook, "Right, the color's good. We can let it cool and bottle it."

"Right." that’s me, just another idiot. Severus began to put away his things. When it was cooled and bottled, they would be able to leave early from class, and he wanted to be ready to do so.

Sirius just breathed sharply out of his nose, doing the same, apparently angered or annoyed by the way he set things into the storage cupboards under the lab bench with loud thuds.

But that was what Severus was used to, Sirius going out of his way for everyone to know when he was displeased; it was almost comforting to know that it was actually Sirius, and not just someone pretending to be him for the afternoon.

Sirius bottled some of the potion into his vial, labelled it, marched it to the front of the class and then strode off, robes flaring, grey eyes slits in Severus's direction as he left class without so much as a breath in James's direction. "Bloody oblivious ..." he muttered on his way out, almost slamming the door.

James just laughed, "Uh ... girl trouble."

Severus wanted to smack Potter for that, but then again, he always wanted to smack him, this really wasn’t any different; really. He bottled his own sample and placed it on the desk in the front of the room before doing back to his work area, cleaning out the remnants of the cauldron so that no one else used their sample.

Severus grabbed his things and quietly left the classroom, quite aware now that people were actually looking at him as well, not just Sirius’s dramatic exit. 

*                    *                    *

As Halloween approached, more students spent more time indoors during their breaks, however, Severus was one of the few who enjoyed the crisp weather and the fall colors. It was a Hogsmeade weekend, and most had gone to the village anyway when Severus decided to take the afternoon to himself, down by the lake on the far side of the school grounds. He was half falling asleep under a heavy wool blanket he had brought with him, laying over his lap as he leaned back against a nearby tree.

A large, bear-like black shape lurked behind a large tree, watching the thin, pale boy nap, it's long tail thumping against the trunk beside it. Silly boy, sleep is for beds ... Padfoot wandered a little closer, then a little closer still, able to smell the boy's exhaustion and loneliness.

The giant squid breeched the surface of the lake briefly, catching a gull as it flew too close to the surface. The thrashing and splash got Severus’s attention and the boy reached for his wand instinctively, startled.

Padfoot barked, stick! stick! play stick! The stray thumped his giant paws on the ground, wagging with bright eyes.

Rather then being alarmed by the sight of the dog, Severus smiled a little, "Hello, Handsome." He said, patting the ground next to his thigh, "Haven’t seen you since last year."

The large dog lumbered forward with a bashful shake of his head before he laid down next to the boy, arching his head into the boy's pale hand in hopes of attention.

Severus stroked the dog's head, just behind his neck and down his shoulders a little, "Looks like you survived another year too." He rubbed the dog’s tummy a little, "Merlin, who’s been feeding you, hmm? You hungry?"

Padfoot grinned, edging closer, treats!? treats!?

Severus kept one hand on the dog’s chest while he reached into his bag with the other, pulling out a bag of carrots he had gotten from the kitchens to take with him on his picnic, "Here, want one of these?" Severus offered "They're crunchy" he tried to make the orange sticks appealing.

The dog's eyes lit up and he offered his paw for a shake immediately.

Severus shook the dog’s paw before throwing the carrot up for him to catch in his mouth, "Good dog."

Padfoot chomped the carrot merrily, as loudly as possible before swallowing it quickly and looking hopefully at the bag from whence it came.

"And another?" Severus reached his hand in and tossed it at the dog again. It was a very simple relationship, Severus understood that the dog liked him because he gave him food and attention, and he liked the dog for almost equal reasons, the dog didn’t care who he was, but always seemed thrilled to see him. It was simple, and clear, and … pathetic. He got along with a stray dog he only saw a few times a year, rather then any of his peers.

The dog caught it easily and settled next to Snape with a happy sigh, tail pummelling the hard ground.

"Good dog, so Handsome." he said again, usually saying so in place of an actual name. He rubbed the dog’s chest and shoulders.

The dog looked proud of himself, quite pleased, his pink tongue hanging out to one side.

Severus let his mind drift as he watched his hand move over the dog’s black fur, starching the back of his head, then rubbing his soft, velvet ears between his fingers, "… this is my last year, you’re going to have to find someone else to steal carrots from soon."

The dog whimpered, setting his chin on Severus's stomach and looking up at him with large, dark eyes.

"Stop that." Severus laughed a little, "You’re a good dog, you’ll find someone. Probably with some family with a bratty kid who will pull your tail, and a mom that overfeeds you … but who cares, that’s a dog’s life, isn’t it … you don’t have to care because at least you’re not out trying to catch rabbits to eat or getting shot at for stealing chickens."

Padfoot gave a little disgusted snort and a large, relieved sigh, blinking up at Severus again.

"Yeah … thought so." Severus continued to rub his hand over the animal absently, "that’s not for you, you don’t need anyone … doing alright, three years now since I first saw you … yeah, you’re a good dog … you live how you want."

The dog grunted and licked Severus's hand, snuggling his chest. Good talking, nice voice, nice man.

Severus buckled his bag so that the dog couldn’t get into his things as he half laid over the dog which was laying over him. He wrapped his arms around him, hugging him, gentle at first, not sure if the dog would become uneasy at having limbs wrapped around him. Severus sighed, pressing his head against the dog’s side, black hair mingling with black fur.

All the large animal did was wag against Severus and snuggle his snout against his neck.

The Slytherin sniffed a little, because it was cold, and not because he was impossibly lonely and disgusted at the thought of feeling sorry for himself. "Good dog." He continued to say softly as he closed his eyes, it was nice to be close to another living thing, but Severus only admitted it to himself in the presence of the black dog.

"Hmmmph-"

Severus sighed as well, staying like this a while longer before he reasoned it was time to let go. He pet and praised the dog as he began to gather his things together.

The dog stood, head cocked, and nudged Severus's bag away, pinning him again.

Severus’s breath caught, surprised and mildly concerned as he pressed his arm across the front of the dog’s chest, trying to push him away, "Get off me."

Padfoot rolled off of him, wagging deviously, then rolled over, exposing his belly.

"Crazy dog." Severus sat up, rubbing the dog’s belly again as the animal stretched happily, his white teeth showing as he grinned. "Hm, you like that? Silly dog …" Severus found himself smiling a little too, it was impossible not to when seeing the human like expression on the dog’s face.

Padfoot groaned, wagging upside down somehow.

Severus touched the dog’s front leg, shaking it a little as his paw flapped in the air, limp and relaxed as he lay on his backside, "Such nonsense." He said fondly, as, things that were fun, he had learned, were useless and complete nonsense. "But still Handsome, hm? You know that, don’t you." He patted the dog’s wide chest before he stood and reached for his bag again.

The dog stretched, then jumped to his feet deftly, looking to Severus as though to follow him.

"Going to walk me back to school?" Severus said, one hand down, palm up for the dog to come over to as he swung his back over his shoulder.

The dog leaned against him for a moment and then started walking with him, staying close enough to be petted.

Severus was in no rush, he stayed close along the stone and pebble bank outline of the lake, always with one hand just touching the dog, either between his shoulders or the back of his neck. If he was going to have company, he needed contact.

The two walked around the lake, Padfoot nuzzling Severus's leg from time to time as though to remind him to scratch behind his ear. As they climbed the last Scottish hillside, nearing the castle, Severus reached into his bag and pulled out several more carrots, "Here you go … now, go on home."

Padfoot sat, paw out again.

"Very polite." Severus praised, shaking his paw before giving him the carrots, "Good dog …"

Padfoot crunched them quickly, looked at Severus for along moment, then lumbered off.

Severus sighed, watching he dog go off before turning and heading into the school.

*                    *                    * 

The first class Monday morning was potions, of which by now students sat in regular groupings, though there was really no assigned seating. Still, Severus sat in his regular seat against the far wall, close to the cabinets that stored dried plant specimens. But this morning, rather then being his usual ready-to-go self, Severus was slouched forward in his chair, chin in the palm of his hand, eyes barely open as his head nodded a little. Severus was fighting to stay awake, which was saying something, because it was unlike him to let his guard down like this, especially in a classroom such as potions where one needed to be aware at all times.

Sirius strode in, well after James and the other marauders had and yawned hugely before sitting down next to his now usual potions partner. "Hey ..."

"Hm." Severus grunted, which was his usual greeting anyway.

"Tired?" Sirius asked, cracking his neck as his silvery eyes stole over to Severus next to him.

"No." Severus's eyes closed, it was too easy in the dim light of the potions classroom.

Sirius chuckled, speaking in a low, almost morning-rough, quiet voice, "Mmhmm, you look like Regulus when he was about three saying he wasn't ready to go to bed at 7pm."

Severus honestly attempted to open his eyes at being compared to a three year old, but only managed to look at Sirius through narrow slits, through not quite a glare, it took too much energy for that.

Sirius just gave him an amused half-grin and started humming a lullaby as Professor Slughorn clapped his hands and started to introduce their next potion.

Severus’s back began to curl like a fallen, fall leaf, leaning forward more and more and Slughorn droned on until at last thud. Severus’s face was smashed into the wood lab table and he was sleeping.

A few faces turned and started to stare but Sirius shook his head at them, "Leave him alone, he's tired." He said, grinning as he began to strip his black over-robe off and folded it into a pillow sized square. He waited until no one was looking and Slughorn was waving ingredients around before Sirius leaned over and very, very slowly, very carefully slipped a hand under Severus's head, raising it as he slid the makeshirt pillow underneath.

Severus’s back rose and fell heavily as he breathed, not moving or responding to Sirius at all except for a soft sigh as he turned his head, face pressed into the robe

Sirius was still smirking as he stood to go get all the ingredients for the potion before he caught Severus's movement out of the corner of his eye and paused, honestly surprised. After only a second's hesitation, Black retrieved the ingredients and set about making the potion of the day on his own.

With only five minutes left of potions, Severus finally stirred, waking up almost instantly. His eyes opened and he sat up, only to discover that a small fortress of books was around him on the desk. Sirius, robeless, working with his shirt sleeves rolled up and his tie off so it stopped dropping into the potion was stirring the potion they'd been assigned lazily, watching vapor escape in curls of steam from the cauldron.

Severus stretched, his chin raised first, followed by his neck and his back; it was like a crumpled piece of parchment unravelling itself to become smooth and straight again. He wiped his eye with two fingers before he swallowed dryly, focusing on the other students working on their lab, then on Sirius, "Wh-" he swallowed and cleared his dry throat.

"Morning." Sirius smirked a little.

"Is it over?"

"Four minutes until it is. Potion's done, you can bottle it if you really want."

"You did it all?"

Sirius shrugged, a small smile floating around the edges of his full lips, "Well you were having a nap, so yeah."

"Why didn't you wake me up?"

"Because you would have just fallen asleep again, trust me." Sirius slid a wide-necked empty bottle to Severus, "If you really want to do something, go ahead and bottle your half of it."

"But I didn't do anything."

"So?" Sirius shrugged, starting to bottle his half of the potion carefully. He didn't spill a drop of the pale potion with an iridescent sheen.

"Why should I get credit for something I didn't do."

"Alright, fine" Sirius sighed, "let it go to waste and sit there for some poor bastard to take a sip of."

"What is it that was assigned today, anyway?"

"Amortentia" Sirius set his bottle down on the bench top, letting it cool, steam spiralling out of the neck of the bottle as he sat back on his stool for the first time all class.

Severus looked to the potion again, "You made a love potion."

Sirius licked his lips and his shoulders squared, "Yeah ... um, everyone made a love potion or-" he looked around the room with a laugh, "tried to." Most of the potions were a sickly shade of anything but the pale, shining color of Sirius and Severus's. James's looked close, he was smelling it like it was the only fresh air in the room.

"You did it ... perfectly."

Sirius grinned and rubbed the back of his neck with one hand, "It doesn't look bad, I guess." A little color spread over his high cheekbones.

"No not bad ... it's supposed to do that."

"I dunno if it really works though, I tried smelling it and it mostly just smells like the lab."

Severus raised his eyebrows, "It ... what?"

"It doesn't really smell that ..." his voice dropped, "different than the lab. A little different maybe, but not much. Maybe it looks fine but it doesn't actually pass the smell test, I dunno."

"Professor Slughorn I'm sure will be the better judge of that." Severus's curiosity flared and he poured a sample of the potion into the empty vile, letting it cool as well, biting at his lower lip, almost uncertain if he wanted to know what is was that he found most appealing.

Sirius leaned closer to his sample, taking a scent as the ringlets of steam curled around his neck like a brush of fingers, dampening the skin on his jaw and lips. He shrugged and leaned over to Severus, across him as he did the same to his sample of the potion, and a deep breath as he almost bumped faces with the Slytherin. "Maybe my nose is out of service or something but it all smells exactly the same to me."

It was subtle, but Severus appreciated it rather then a jab at him and his parrot nose, ‘why don’t you take a whiff, Snivily, put that nose of yours to good use’. Severus pulled the bottled potion up, and fanned the pearly fumes to his face, breathing them in. He … he could smell … he swallowed and put it down again, "Yes … you did it right."

"You're sure?"

"Yes. Quite."

Sirius regarded Snape curiously, "Yours didn't smell like the lab?"

"Only at first."'

Sirius grinned a little, "But you love the lab ..."

"Yes, well ... it smells like more then one thing."

"Like what things?" Sirius started smelling his again, frustrated.

"It's going to be different for you, now, isn't it."

"That's what I'm trying to understand, if we're smelling the same things." Sirius closed his grey eyes again in concentration and he inhaled, "Mine smells like the lab, exactly like the lab right now ... wait-" He paused, thinking, "There's definitely something else there ... but it's subtle."

"You can figure it out, I’m sure." Severus looked away, writing down the reading that Slughorn had cited on the front board, "But you’ve done it correctly."

Sirius sighed, "Wait ... it's-" Sirius raised an arched eyebrow, "ink?"

"I don't know ... is it?"

"A little ..." the pureblood kept musing over his potion.

"Parchment, it's definitely ink and parchment and ... damn it, I've smelled this before- it's some sort of ..."

"You surprise me."

Sirius raised an eyebrow, looking at Snape as he corked the potion. "How?"

"The things you love ... ink and parchment? The lab? I suppose I expected ..." Severus sighed, "I don't know, motor oil, or something muggle."

"Me too ..." Sirius swallowed, "but it's supposed to be what you're attracted to, isn't it? I guess there are different sorts of attraction, I'm really not a big fan of the lab, or ink, or parchment but maybe all put together it's ... more than a sum of it's parts, right?"

"Perhaps."

"I'm handing mine in, want me to take yours too?"

"Thank you."

Sirius took both vials, labelling them with their names, "There's still some left over in the bottom ..." he said with a toss of his blue-black hair and strode to the front of the class, handing them in casually, laughing with James for a second.

Severus tipped the cauldron on it’s side, breathing deeply, and rather then dumping it, as he should have, he poured the left over into another vile, and pushed it away, into his satchel before cleaning up the workspace.

Sirius came back, ignoring a few girls who wanted to compare the scent of their potions to his neck. The reluctant pureblood grinned a little, crookedly, "Wow, that was fast." he nodded, looking over the perfectly clean bench. "So, going to go catch a nap now?"

"No, going to class."

"I'm sure you can miss one class in your entire life." Sirius muttered, leaning his hip against the bench top.

"I already did. I slept through potions."

Sirius just stretched, his lower back popping, "Suit yourself. See you Tuesday I guess." He waited expectantly, looking at Snape.

Severus nodded a little, looking away, his eyes fell to the table, he frowned and picked up the robes that he had used as a pillow, "Are these yours?"

"Oh." Sirius nodded, "yeah. Thanks." He seemed a little bereft of any smart comeback for a moment as he took his robes back and put them on, "Blood freezing dungeons."

Severus didn’t say anything, not a word. But seemed to quickly disappear from the dungeons and Sirius’s sight as class let out.

Sirius just smirked, watching him leave with a devilish twinkle in his eyes as he tapped his nose with his wand, undoing the scent-blocking spell he'd learned that morning.

James and Remus caught up to him, Peter in tow. James flung his arm around Sirius, "So ... how's it going?"

Sirius smirked, walking upstairs with them, "Pretty good, pretty good, Mr. Potter. How'd your potion smell? I can guess ... red hair, a hot temper, the smell of a slap across your cheek ..."

James laughed loudly, "Mhm. I'm marrying her, mark my words, Pads. I am the future Mr. Lily Evans."

Sirius looked back at Remus, "Hey, Moony, what'd your potion smell like?"

Remus just smiled enigmatically, "Like not starving for lack of employment when school is over ... and chocolate of course."

"Liar."

"Mine smelled like perfume!" Peter piped up.

Remus smiled quietly at Sirius, "So, Pads ... what did yours smell like with that handy little spell I taught you?"

Sirius laughed, tossing his head back, "Like the lab around me, what else?"

Remus nodded, "Hmm, interesting. You know how you're always saying I don't pull enough pranks to be a proper marauder?"

Sirius and Remus stood at the top of the stairs while Peter and James moved on. Sirius tilted his head, "Yeah ..."

"Well, there was no spell. It was gibberish." Remus just grinned.

Sirius froze. He looked made of stone, "But I ... but I smelled the lab and ... paper and ... ink and ... I mean he was SITTING right next to me of COURSE I SMELLED HIM!!!"

"Have fun sorting that out, Pads. See you in class." Remus just patted Sirius on the cheek. With a new spring in his step, Remus left for class as Sirius sat on the stairs, wide eyed.

*                    *                    *

It was not uncommon for Severus to skip lunches in the great hall and study, usually in his dorm room. It was however, uncommon for Severus to skip lunches and not study. As today, locking the door behind him, Severus set his things beside the door and pulled out the vile of potion he had salvaged from potions class. Walking over to his desk, he lit a small flame under a copper bowl and poured in a few precious drops. The smell immediately filling the room. Severus closed his eyes, capping the bottle and setting it aside, hands on either side of his desk, breathing deeply.

In a whirl of imagination, Severus soon was laying back on his bed, eyes closed, hand down the front of his pants, beginning to fist at himself as the smell of sweat and rain filled his lungs; specifically, the smell of sweat and rain during a Quidditch match, when the players were soaked through, clothes heavy and draped tightly across their bodies.

"M-mm." Severus bit at his lower lip, squirming a little at his own touch, hips beginning to rise as he fisted his erection. "… oh … … … please." His face contorted into frustration and the potion billowed another puff, filling the room again, sweat, and rain and now something a little more dangerous, the smell of blood, the smell of a purebood. Severus groaned.

Severus arched and writhed on the bed, eyes tightly closed as he bit his lip, sitting up suddenly, legs over the side of the bed, he pushed his pants down just enough, stroking at himself, hard, "… … yes … …" he barely managed, not wanting to break the spell over himself; he imagined, in out, in out and, "god, take it …" before he cried out, coming into his hand, over his fingers.

Severus groaned, and dared not look at himself, laying back on the bed with a sigh, just breathing in the scent that filled the room, falling asleep with it. Missing class.

*                    *                    *

Sirius missed class too, having taken James's invisibility cloak, and raced down the tunnel to Honeydukes. Once out of the candy shop, he made a break for the local apothecary, leaving several gold coins (more than enough) on the shelf from which he took seven vials of professionally made amortentia and snuck back into the still open tunnel, closing it quietly over himself before he tossed the cloak off and opened the vials one by one, smelling them. Ten minutes later, Sirius sat on the ground, stone faced. They'd all smelled exactly the same: a potions lab, parchment, ink and a warm, indefinable smell under it all, something mysterious.

It hadn't been a mistake after all.

*                    *                    * 

The large black dog couldn't sleep. It was late out, he'd been completely unable to sleep inside and when the clock hit three am, so he decided to come out to his favorite clearing and try to relax under the stars. Human brains were complex, riddled with stress and conflicting emotion, and this was better, much, much better. He'd almost succeeded, very nearly, when a snap of a twig under something's footstep woke him abruptly.

Severus walked absently, a hand lightly trailing against fallen trees and large boulders alike, trusting his feet, just to take him away. A light dusting of snow covered the ground, now hard and cold, though as Severus walked, frozen leaves still crunched under his feet. Even with the snow, it was still pleasant out, enough that Severus still had time to buy a winter coat, or lift one, if necessary.

The dog stood, looking through the spare, dead leaves on low trees and bushes to see the intruder. Before he could stop himself his tail wagged and the dog lumbered forward joyfully.

"Bloodyfuck-" Severus cursed, surprised and relieved by the animal bounding towards him, recognizing him as he caught his breath, his heart still pounding in his ears, "Ah … look at you, Handsome-" Severus knelt to one knee, petting the familiar dog, "What are you doing, hmmm? You’re supposed to be sleeping infront of a fire in some nice home."

The black dog tackled him, licking his face happily and wagging so that his entire body seemed to wiggle. It was simple like this, HI SEV! HI SEV! HI! HI SEV!

"Ah-" Severus tucked his head behind his arm, though laughed, "No kisses" he pushed the dog’s chest with the side of his arm.

Padfoot pouted, but contented himself with laying his head on Severus's chest, looking up at him as his tail went back and forth, back and forth.

Severus smiled, "There’s a good dog, hm?" he began petting him behind his head.

"Hhm." The dog sighed, happily before he nuzzled Severus's neck, huffing into his hair.

"Handsome ..." Severus said fondly, that's what he couldn't think of before, dirty dog, this dirty dog, he smelled that too.

Padfoot hummed again, then leapt off of Severus, finding a large stick and parading around with it in his mouth, daring Severus to grab it.

Severus sat up on his knees, "You have a stick, hm? Is that yours? Are you going to give it to me?" Severus thrust out his hand.

Padfoot danced out of the way with the stick, just out of Severus's fingertips.

"Come- Come? Will you come? I’ll throw it, hm? Are you a good dog?" Severus reached again, watching him, "Oh yes … so Handsome-"

The dog sank down into a play bow and dropped the stick, watching to see if Severus would grab it up.

"Yes? Gooood dog?" Severus leaned forward, then snatched it up, standing quickly, "Ha! This yours? This your stick? Want to have it?"

The dog barked and jumped teeth snapping playfully at the stick before he ran back and forth, whimpering in anticipation.

"Ok … ok! THERE." Severus tossed the stick through the trees as far as he could manage, part of it breaking when it hit a stump.

The dog raced off after it, growling and in a moment returned with both pieces, looking very pleased with himself.

"Oh, such a good boy, hmmm? Can I have it?"

Padfoot seemed to snicker as he backed away slowly, taunting Severus with the sticks, keeping them just out of reach.

"Want to play? Want me to throw it?"

That convinced him. The dog dropped one stick, putting the other away in the bushes for safe keeping before he pounded his front paws down and barked.

Severus withdrew his hand, "Easy …" he approached the dog again, a little more cautiously, a whisper reminding him that it was still a free-running, wild dog that had no owner.

The dog tilted his head, walking closer, nudging the stick in Severus's hand with his nose.

"Good boy, good …" Severus sighed, petting him with one hand, taking the stick with the other, "ready? Ready? THERE." He threw it again.

Padfoot bolted off, this time catching it before it hit the ground, twisting as he jumped.

"Good boy! Good dog ... come here, that's it" Severus knelt to one knee again.

Padfoot trotted over, tail waving high in the air as he dropped the stick and tackled Snape again, paws on his shoulders, licking his face with glee.

"No- kisses-" Severus turned his head away, laughing though tried to push the dog off him.

Padfoot whimpered and got one last sloppy dog kiss in before he laid down, head on Snape's chest, laying over him like a large, warm furry blanket.

"Hey-" Severus petted the dog between the shoulders, "There … good boy …"

Another huge sigh and Padfoot relaxed, laying his tired head under Snape's chin and closing his eyes.

"… oh" Severus sighed, "Sleepy puppy" petting him, though tried to sit up, "Don’t you want to sleep inside?"

The dog stretched and yawned, getting up and wagging slowly.

"Hm?" Severus smiled a little, "You’re so smart, such a good dog, so Handsome." He petted him, though kept his hand close to the back of the dog’s neck and between his shoulders in place of a collar. He didn’t grab it, he just rubbed, keeping a hand on the animal, "No dogs allowed, so you’re going to be quiet, aren’t you …"

Padfoot just huffed as an agreement, nudging Snape against the legs.

"Good boy, good dog …" Severus stopped when the school as in sight, kneeling down and hugging the dog, smelling his neck, petting him. It was sudden, but suddenly needed.

Padfoot's eyes closed and he just breathed slowly, letting Snape hug him, leaning into him a little.

"…" Severus took a deep breath and let it out slowly, "Get you something to eat." He said, standing and leading the dog in, pausing in the entry way, making sure no one was in sight.

The dog stayed quiet, looking around furtively, with glittering, dark eyes as he followed Snape through the castle.

Severus walked quickly, keeping the dog at his side, leading him down, encouraging him as they went along, praising him, keeping him from smelling furniture or the corners of walls or sculpture. Soon they had reached the lowest public point in the school, beyond the door was private, beyond was the Slytherin common room. Severus spoke the password, opening the door, looking in briefly before he called the dog over, "Come … good boy" he whispered.

The dog wagged as it snuck in, obviously enjoying the adventure as it looked around the Slytherin common room, smelling the furniture and sneezing a little.

Severus patted his thigh, calling the dog over as he opened up the door to his dorm room, one of the few that was one the main level as the rest of the common room.

Padfoot scurried in, pausing almost in the doorway as he looked around the room with large, curious eyes. The huge dog went to Severus's desk, half standing up as he smelled the remainder of the potion in the warmer.

"Hey- hey- get out of there-" Severus closed the door behind them, opening up a small ice box on the floor, next to the bathroom floor, finding carrots, "Hungry?"

Padfoot jumped up on the bed, tail thumping on the covers as he panted, watching Severus search through the ice box.

"Here ..." he walked over, tossing a few carrots onto the bed for the dog, scratching the back of his own head.

The dog laid down, chomping on them happily, playing with one carrot for a moment before eating it too.

"So ... that's your bed then." Severus walked over to his wardrobe and took off his overrobe, followed by his school robes, hanging them up.

The dog answered by rolling over in the blankets, pausing and then snuffling them with interest near the edge.

Severus kicked his boots off and then pulled on a long sleeved shirt, walking over to another, completely unused bed, keeping on his socks and boxers as he slid in, not exactly tired, but not going out again while having the dog in his room.

Padfoot steadied himself before jumping to Severus's bed, curling up, head on Snape with a sigh.

"Dog-!" Severus gasped, petting him, "You have your own bed …" though, kept petting him, it was nice actually, not to be alone, to have something real, more then his imagination, curled up, warm, laying with him.

The black dog yawned immensely and sighed, grunting happily as he curled up in Severus's warm bed and closed his eyes.

"Good dog." Severus praised, petting him absently until he too found rest.

*                    *                    *

Severus's face was pressed into a black mass of hair, holding the warm body close to him as morning light filtered in through gloom of the black lake.

Sirius was still fast asleep, his arms holding his bedmate close as he breathed gently against Severus's neck. His own hair was rumpled, but still silky, and his clothes lay in small piles around the bed.

Mid stretch was disturbed by a scream. Then a SCREAM. Severus scrambled out of bed, tripping and falling as his ankles twisted in the sheets, fighting until he got to his feet, wand summoned to his shaking hand.

Sirius sat bolt upright, eyes wide, confused for a second and then he LEAPT BACK, the sheet twisted around his naked body. "What the FUCK!?"

Severus scooted back on the floor until his back hit the wall, pushing himself up, eyes wide, hand trembling, and began to shout indistinct curses.

Sirius held his hands up, "WHOA!" The sheet slipped and he grabbed it just in time, the memory of meeting Snape in the woods as Padfoot coming back to him as he sat on the other bed. "Not armed! I'm not armed ... obviously. Calm down, I can explain."

Severus half indicated to his bed, then the other, frowning and furious and eyes red around the edges, his face colored, burning, unable to manage a coherent thought, let alone sentence.

"Nothing happened." Sirius shook his head calmly, "Trust me, nothing happened. I ... I sometimes turn into a dog, alright?"

Severus however seemed on the verge of tears to lose his dog, his friend, "… wh- …"

Sirius sank his head into his hands for a moment, "I'm an animagus." He admitted through his hands. He'll turn me in, he'll turn me in and I'll be expelled.

Severus however, even with this exceptionally simple explanation, just shook, rubbing his head, wand still fisted in his hand, "Don’t … understand."

Sirius just sighed and turned back into the black dog, who hung his head, guilty.

Severus covered his face, feeling betrayed; not by Sirius, but by the dog, who was supposed to be honest, not capable of deception.

The dog changed back into Sirius, who sighed. "I'm sorry. I like to go outside when I can't sleep or I'm bored and I ... liked you."

"Sirius-" Severus’s voice broke, his eyes covered with his arm, head tucked under, his other hand over the top of his head, "get … out."

"I'm ... sorry, alright? I'm really sorry. I liked it. I liked that you were being nice to me, I liked playing, I liked curling up!"

Severus never cried. Never. No matter how bloody the fight or how hard the circumstances. But there were tears now, unstoppable as Severus got to his feet, his chest caving a few times, almost as if the Slytherin was going to be sick, "… out."

"Severus ..." he swallowed, "I ... I like you, I like you, alright? And if I'm not disguised as a dog ... you won't even talk to me?"

Severus’s face hardened, he marched up to Sirius and slapped him, then hugged him, very hard, his body hot, though shaking as if it were cold.

Sirius gasped at both actions, and in surprise at himself as he hugged Severus back. There it was, Severus's scent, exactly what he remembered from the love potions. "It was you ... I smelled you in class." Through his shock, Sirius wondered if that sentence could ever be romantic in any context.

Severus cupped the side of Sirius’s face with both hands, firmly as he pulled his head back, starring into his eyes, silver and sharp and dangerous.

"I'm not lying. I'm not lying, I've done some pretty shitty things in my life, but this isn't one of them. I took a bet, alright? I took a bet saying I couldn't get you to kiss me in publi.c" Sirius was shaking, hard, "but I didn't really think I would end up ... you know ... with you ... like this ..."

"No? Not like this?" Severus attempted coldness, but his voice broke again, "you ... are hurting me ..." Severus hugged Sirius again, "stop ... hurting me."

Sirius was quiet, stunned, his grey eyes wide. "I'm ... sorry." He whispered, closing his eyes.

Severus clung onto Sirius, the sweat, the rain, the blood and the dirty dog, all right there, in his arms.

Sirius swallowed, "The bet is off. I'm calling it off."

"You … would have, kissed me? For … money? For a bet?"

"I told you, it was stupid, it was so fucking stupid!"

"But you would have done it. They were going to pay you that much."

"Yes." Sirius whispered, not looking at Severus, feeling like the lowest, most despicable form of life on the face of the earth. Shame burned through him, forcing his white skin to go scarlet.

Severus did not let go yet, he had been so desperate to be close, that even with the pain in his chest, he could not let go of this.

"I'm sorry. Goddamn it, I'm sorry" Sirius whispered, tightening his arms around Severus's back, "I'm ... fuck. I'm sorry, I feel bloody awful, alright?"

"How awful."

"Snape ..." Sirius choked a little, trying to keep his eyes dry, "I was wrong about you, I was wrong, there, I admitted it!"

"Kiss me, for free."

"Now?" Sirius whispered, looking at Severus, confused.

"Yes."

Black took a deep breath, licking his lips as he slid both hands up, cupping Snape by the face. For once there was a flicker of fear in Sirius's cloud-colored eyes before he leaned in and kissed Severus, lightly at first.

Severus waited, letting Sirius kiss him, his face wet with tears, testing to see just how sorry Sirius was.

Sirius hummed a little and leaned in, parting his mouth a little, running his tongue between Snape's salty lips as he tilted his head.

Not thinking he would get another chance at this, this, his first kiss, Severus parted his lips and kissed back, uncertain, still testing Sirius, waiting for him to start laughing because the joke had been taken to the next level.

But Sirius didn't laugh because there was nothing funny about this. Every fight they'd ever had, every feverish rise of emotion Sirius felt and mistook for anger in Snape's presence suddenly made perfect sense. Kissing was nicer than fighting, much, much nicer. Sirius renewed the kiss again, his eyebrows rising at the rush of blood through his own body, the way it made him dizzy.

"Don’t tell." Severus whispered.

"Won't ... I swear ... gods, you're ... mmm." Sirius gripped Severus's shoulders gently, running his hands over the tops of his arms with a low purr in his throat, still kissing him.

Severus leaned against Sirius, arms still tightly wound around his sides and back, kissing him, tasting him.

"Mmm-" Sirius moaned, still only covered by the sheet around his hips.

"M-m!" Severus whimpered, squirming against Sirius a little, then pushing away with a gasp, running into the bathroom to take care of a problem.

Sirius gasped, confused, "Severus?" he called out.

There was no answer from behind the door except for hard, labored breathing.

Sirius followed, listening at the door, knocking, "Are you alright?"

"Ah-" Severus whimpered, biting back from crying out any louder.

His eyes widened, "Oh ..." he blushed, grinning sheepishly.

The sink water was run and after a few minutes, beads of sweat around Severus’s temple, did the young man leave the bathroom, certain he had given Sirius enough time to run for it, and embarrassed himself enough, regardless.

Sirius was waiting, however, laying on the bed they'd woken in, under the covers. "You're okay?"

Severus flushed, a sort of orange color, "Yes."

"Do you want to keep kissing?"

Severus stared at Sirius, for a long time, "Do you?"

"I could have left if I didn't."

"That's not an answer."

Sirius licked his lips again and swallowed, "Yeah, I do."

Severus moved closer to the bed, pulled himself up, getting closer, watching Sirius before he leaned over and started to kiss him again.

"Mmm ..." Sirius moaned, closing his eyes and this time parting his lips for Severus's tongue, inviting him in.

Severus groaned, trying this, then backing off, pecking at the corner of his mouth as he asked, "What did you really smell in potions?"

"You, your room ... what did you smell?" Sirius kissed back, arms reaching up and circling around Severus's thin body.

"You. After a game, in the rain ... a dirty dog."

Sirius groaned, "Merlin ..." he swore, kissing Severus again with a playful smile, "dirty dog, hm?"

"You ... ah ... mmmm ... you're not getting paid for this."

"No ... no, we'd have to do it in public ... " Sirius kissed him again, sucking on his lower lip.

"Are you ... going to stop trying?"

"Want me to?" Sirius leaned down, kissing Severus's neck experimentally.

"No ... it was ... different."'

"Then I'll stop trying to kiss you ... in public." Sirius kissed Severus's neck again, sucking softly at his skin. Sirius groaned softly, smiling and kissed Severus's neck a little harder as a reward, sucking at the skin, "Severus ..."

"... what?"

"Your skin is ... much softer than it looks." Sirius stroked his tongue over the slightly pink flesh.

"Mmm-" Severus sighed with a groan, sinking down in the bed.

"Mhm ..." Sirius rolled over Snape, the sheet around his hips sinking down a little.

Severus pressed his hands against Sirius’s back, up his shoulders, feeling out the muscles, this entire concept, quite new to him.

"By the way, you have-" another kiss to his lips and Sirius rolled them both over so that Severus was on top now, "sexy hands."

"Just ... hands ..." Severus whispered, touching Sirius over his chest, moving up his body, leaning against him again, stomachs pressed together.

"Nice ... mmmm." Sirius tipped his head back as Severus's fingers explored his chest, "hands ..."

"Sirius- ah- you-" Severus kissed him hard, pressing his head back further as his fingers went up against the base of Sirius’s neck, thumb stroking a line down Sirius’s throat.

Sirius kissed Snape back again, hotly, his back arching up a little, "yes?"

"I ... will ... hurt you ... if you EVER ... again."

"Fine-" Sirius gasped, "I'd let you."

Severus kissed him again, sucking on his tongue a little, pressing their warm, still young bodies together, firm and wet and constantly rolling together.

"MMM!" Sirius felt his hips rise under Snape and quickly realized his sheet had been pulled off, he could feel the fabric of Snape's boxers against his bare cock, "Sev!"

"Oh ... oh ... god ... is that ... you?" Severus bit at his lip, looking down between them.

"Yes!" Sirius gasped, still rubbing slowly against Snape's groin, "fuck ... kiss me ... again."

Severus kissed him again, sucking on his lip with a groan as he shifted a little, getting an idea of how Sirius felt.

"Ahh-" Sirius leaned up, his hands going to Severus's hips, just rubbing them for a moment, "Again ..."

Reaching back, Severus fisted Sirius by the hair, kissing him again, pressing his tongue into his mouth as he arched over him.

Sirius groaned, squeezing Snape by the hips hard, pulling them down. It was hard to tell if they were fighting or almost fucking each other on the bed, every movement was frantic, needy, passionate.

Severus was sweating and without a thought in his mind, he pulled off his long sleeved shirt and tossed it to the side, leaning down and kissing Sirius as if he had not stopped. Eyes lightly closed as he sucked at his skin.

"Mmm ... gods, how's that?" Sirius pawed his hands at the small of Snape's back, running his fingernails lightly over sensitive skin.

Severus groaned, back arching instantly as they rubbed, his fingers pressing into Sirius's chest like talons, clinging to him fiercely.

"Ahhh! Fuck!" Sirius growled, starting to thrust himself against Severus's hard on, through the fabric, "C'mon, touch me ..."

Severus smacked the side of Sirius’s face, lightly, smirking, then kissing him again, biting at his lip before kissing him properly again with a groan.

Sirius moaned at the sting of Snape's hand and kissed him even harder than before, his hand yanking Severus's boxers down enough to get a good grip on him. "Ohholyfuck ..." he gasped, stroking Snape, "fuckinghuge."

"Shutup." Severus hissed, rocking on his lap.

Sirius squeezed Snape's erection, whimpering and thrusting himself up against him, "take them off ..."

Severus sat up, pushed them down, getting one leg free, and that was enough, letting the faded boxers remained wrapped around the back of his knee of one leg as he settled over Sirius again, rubbing their balls together.

"There!" Sirius gasped, laughing through his moan as they touched, blissful. He reached up and took both of their cocks in one hand, no easy task, and started to stroke them together, chest heaving up and down.

"Oh ... oh ... Sirius ..." Severus smirked, pleased as he watched, hand wrapped around the back of his neck, kissing him again.

Sirius closed his eyes as he sucked Severus's lips and tongue, still stroking them together, his toes starting to curl against the green sheets of the Slytherins bed, "ohhhhh-" he whimpered.

"What ... what do you imagine, when you close your eyes?"

"I don't ... have to ... imagine ..." Sirius moaned, looking up at Snape, hungrily, squeezing his hand around them.

"That's ... good ... oh ... fuck ... Sirius."

"Fuck ... I'm ... ohgodsohgodsohgods it's ... I'm ... coming ... OH!" Sirius gasped, his eyes going wide as he felt Snape's cock rub against his own, his own sex hitting the ridge of Snape's head over and over again, "COMING!"

Severus watched Sirius, eyes wide, focused, fucking his hand, fucking their erections together as he shut him up, kissing him.

Sirius's orgasmic scream was muffled by Severus's tongue as he came, cum fountaining over the head of his cock, over his fingers, down Severus's erection, over his balls.

"You ..." Severus groaned, feeling Sirius cum against him, slick and warm.

"Yes-" Sirius managed.

"You made a mess." Severus smiled.

Sirius couldn't speak, he was just gasping, smiling a little, his cheeks, nipples and cock the same shade of rose.

Severus continued to rub, bowing down and kissing Sirius along his neck, just under his ear before he whispered, "Clean your mess off me."

Sirius moaned quietly, smiling as he licked his lips, his eyes daring Snape, "Make me ..."

"Clean it." Severus fisted the back of Sirius's head again.

"Or what?" Sirius gasped, sweet and breathy.

Severus reached down with his free hand and pinched his nail against Sirius's nipple.

"Ohhh." Sirius smiled wider, devious and delighted, "going to have to do better than that, Snape."

Severus pinched harder, "Better then that?"

Sirius groaned, his jaw clenching but he nodded, "Yeah, better than that ... is that all you've got?"

Severus held Sirius by his hair, holding him in place as he smacked his face again, "Clean it."

"Ohhh ... gods ..." Sirius moaned, licking his lips as he began to move down Severus's body, licking his way down, biting just a little now and then until he got to Snape's still protruding cock and licked it, tasting himself.

"Good." Severus groaned, still holding onto Sirius by the back of the head, but otherwise on all fours, head hanging down between his shoulders as he watched.

"Mhm-" Sirius reached up as far as he could with his neck, tongue straining to get at Snape's balls.

Severus’s knees slid on the bed, parting his thighs, lowering himself, "There … good."

"Oh ..." Sirius started to suck, moving his aristocratic mouth down Snape's shaft from the underside, sucking his cum off, mouthing around the swell of one of his balls.

"Mmm-" Severus whimpered, gasping as his stomach pressed down, hips rocking against his mouth.

Sirius moved his tongue greedily, lapping up every last drop of his own cum from Snape's balls before he moved up, taking him in his mouth, all at once.

"Ohgod." Severus groaned, he had not done any of this before, only in his best, best dreams, when he woke up and wanted to do laundry himself, rather then have the elves take care something that personal. "Good."

Sirius just hummed, starting to suck Severus's cock slowly, starting to taste a little of Severus as well.

"Sirius ... that's ... good." Severus loosened his grip. He looked down, bit at his lip, he asked, rather then took, "can I ... push into your mouth?"

Sirius nodded around him, looking up with eyes that not only consented but begged for it.

"Good … ohgod, Sirius-" Severus began to grind into Sirius’s mouth, slowly at first before he groaned, sliding in and out, pushing Sirius’s head back, "Good … yes … take it, please … ohhh, god … Sirius."

Sirius sucked when he could, his eyes closing as he let Severus fuck the back of his open throat.

"Sirius … again … again … my god … sh- … FUCK." Severus steadily slipped inside, pressing against Sirius’s tongue, he cursed further before he came, only a few squirts this time, but his body shook to force that out.

Sirius gagged a little but swallowed it, keeping Snape inside his mouth, jaw stretched as far as it would go before he pulled back enough to breathe, humming.

Severus moved down Sirius’s body, arms wrapped around him, kissing him, not hard, but sweetly, whispering, "… my god … that was so good … are you alright?"

"Yeah ..." Sirius whimpered, "mmm ... kiss ..."

Severus kissed him again, "I-" he sucked on his tongue lightly, but only a little, thinking that Sirius was probably tired of it. "I was … too rough?"

"MMmmmm ... no ... no ... oh fuck! Suck it again ... please ..."

"You want to suck me again?" Severus smirked, "Or you want ... this." Severus kissed him, sucking on his tongue suggestively.

Sirius moaned, it felt amazing, beyond amazing to have his overworked, cramping tongue sucked.

Severus smiled a little, petting his hair as he might have the dog, "By when are you supposed to kiss me, publically?"

"Mmm, New Year's ... New year's ..."

"And if you don't?"

"I ... well, I'll be extremely broke, even with the money my uncle left for me."

"And ... if you do, manage it?"

Sirius bit his lower lip, "It would be enough for me to finish fixing my bike."

"More, I'd guess."

"Enough for both of us to fix a bike" Sirius smiled.

"Perhaps." Severus began thoughtfully, "if you are good, Sirius, perhaps ... by new years, I will let you, kiss me, publically."

"Good? How good?" His eyes lit up.

"Be as you have been with me in class, civil. And, let me see my Handsome dog, from time to time."

Sirius smiled slowly, kissing Severus slowly, "Mmm, and you're sure that's all you want from me?"

"No, not certain at all. I'll let you know. This, Sirius, as I'm sure you are familiar is, is considered Black-mail."

"Mmm-" Sirius laughed, "I'll let you get away with that for now ..."

"You will, until new years, at least, let me get away with anything."

"Bastard ..." he purred, shifting under Severus.

"You will have to take that up with my mother."

Sirius laughed again, "When did you grow a sense of humor?!"

"I have always had one. Dry, I think is the phrase."

"Mummified, I think, is more apt ..."

"Hm."

"Hm, as in you can't think of anything to say to that?"

"Should I?"

"You usually do. So, I'm on call, then? Anytime, anywhere, at your service?"

"Yes, I think that sums it up."

"Hmm-" Sirius gave Severus his most languid, sultry look, "should be interesting."

*                    *                    * 

"Normally." Severus pulled at Sirius by the back of his Quidditch robes, taking him aside just as he emerged, last from the locker rooms, "I'd enjoy you sweaty, right after a game."

Sirius stopped short, turning and smirked, keeping his voice down, "Oh, yeah? Well that can be arranged."

"I think, today, I'd like to enjoy you, Sirius, while you are still clean." Severus smirked.

Sirius raised an eyebrow looking after his team-mates who were already doing practice laps around the pitch, "I ... I'd like to but I've sort of got this game to play right now, don't know if you've heard of it ... Quidditch."

"Mhm ... I think, right now, Sirius, you have another obligation."

Sirius blinked, "I've got to start the game in about four minutes!"

"Then you better get me off before then."

The pureblood's eyes widened and he looked around to make sure no one was watching, "You're not joking!?"

"Not joking." Severus pushed Sirius back into the locker room, a little pleased smile settled in the corner of his mouth, watching the panic on Sirius's face.

"In four minutes!?" Sirius looked around, nervous.

"I'm sure you can do it."

Sirius swallowed, starting to color nicely before he took a final glance around, "Alright ... what do you want?" he asked softly, quickly.

Severus rubbed his thumb and finger against his chin, purposefully being thoughtful, "I’m sure if you bent over, I could come quickly enough for you."

Black half moaned, "Bent over? Here? Now? You mean you're going to ..." he swallowed, reading the clear look of non compromise on Snape's face, and began to undo his belt, "Just let me keep the uniform on, mostly ..."

"Very well." Severus smiled slowly, stepping closer.

Sirius undid himself hastily, lowering his tight uniform pants, no underwear on game day of course. The pureblood had a stiff erection already, jutting out from his hip as he bent over, gripping the edges of the bench in front of him, "Did you ... bring anything?"

Severus took off his gloves and smoothed his warm hand over Sirius’s exposed ass, squeezing it with a pleased sigh, "Ah- no" he massaged both hands over Sirius’s ass, spreading them.

"No?" Sirius asked, nervously, "Nothing at ... all?"

Severus watched Sirius, letting him fret before he knelt down to one knee and parting him with long, firm fingers and began to tongue his ass.

"OHholyFUCK!" Sirius swore, his hips bucking at the surprising feeling. "FUCK ... Severus, Sev ... oh ... jesuschristyes-" he tried to whisper, aware of the crowd just outside.

"That is … something." Severus smirked, standing and undoing himself, licking his fingers and sliding them over his shaft, pushing himself in, still rather raw.

Head snapping back and then sank down to the bench with a shaking, Sirius gave a quiet moan of appreciation, "Fuckohyes,ohhellyes, you ... feel ... sobig ... Severusplease."

"They are … waiting, and what are you doing? You’re moaning … you’re taking me up the ass … which do you prefer, tell me, honestly."

"This!" Sirius hissed, his young body writhing wildly, "But ... I have to ... fuck, they're ... waiting ... the game ... Severus, Sev come on, comeon and fuck me ..."

Severus’s fingers slowly curled around Sirius’s hips as a warning before he held them firmly and slammed into him once with a growl. "Don’t tell me what to do."

"OH!" Sirius YELPED and then covered his mouth, moaning into it as he nodded.

Severus eased himself, in and out, being careful not to push too hard, that was a level Severus was not willing to go to unless he meant it, to cause pain. "Mmmm- Sirius … ah … I’ve never fucked a man before … is it good? It’s good, Sirius … you’re so good."

"Gods," Sirius swore, "I'm your first?"

"Don't tell."

"Ahh ..." he whispered, laughing only a little at Severus's request, considering their position, fucking with hundreds of their peers on the other side of a flimsy curtain, "no, I won't. Oh ... mmmmm, gods there ..." Sirius began to grind back against Snape, impaling himself slowly, shaking with pleasure.

But when Severus said – don’t – he meant – don’t ever – unless otherwise informed. This was said often, in different contexts, and not always recognized. Severus bit at his lip, groaning, "Ah- Sirius- I knew … oh … god … yes …" his fingers pressed into Sirius’s hip again, clinging to him as he thrust, getting faster as he managed to push through the resistance, coming easily, but fucking through it, his cock slick with cum and making Sirius slick.

"Ahhh ... OH ... FUCK ... you -" Sirius gasped, looking at the clock just above the lockers, "ohgod ... I'm going to ... we'll forfeit if ... I have to go! But ohhhhh, ohhhhh, fucking hell ... don't stop-" he whispered in a moment of weakness.

Severus continued to grind against Sirius, until the resistance was too much and he was limp. He didn’t pull away though, he wrapped his arms around Sirius, holding him from behind, face pressed against the leather of Sirius’s Quidditch gear.

"Fuck ... fuck-" he whispered, breathless, close to coming himself, "Sev ... "

"Yes?" Severus reached down, palming Sirius, letting his fingers curl under his shaft.

"Ahh- Oh oh oh oh ... no, they're looking ... for me ... by ... they could walk in ... you're still inside me and-"

"Should I make you wait then? Until after the game? Or will you come in your pants, sitting up on that broom? Will you think of me?"

"I ... might! Sev! Please! Please let me ... the game! I'll come to you ... after ... you can do anything to me ... all night!"

Severus smiled to himself, letting his hand lightly slip away as he stepped back, cleaning himself briefly before he pulled up his pants and did up his belt again.

Sirius gasped, doing himself up as quickly as he could, running out with his broom on shaking legs, a look behind at Severus. Black soared onto the pitch, joining his teammates only ten seconds before the game would be given to Slytherin.

"WHere the HELL have you BEEN?" James shouted.

"Broom problems ..." Sirius sighed, shrugging.

*            *            *

"Nice game." A voice came, smoothly behind Sirius.

Sirius turned in the hallway on the way up to the common room for a victory celebration, still in his sweaty, stained quiddich gear. He smirked a little, "Thanks ... thought you'd be all sore about your team losing."

Severus shrugged a little, "Not as ... sore, as you appeared to be. Having trouble up there?"

"Oh ..." Sirius looked around, then at Severus through sweaty, dark locks of hair, "saw that, did you?"

Severus smirked, completely calm, "Enjoyed it, actually."

Sirius raised his eyebrows, looking pleased with himself, "Did you? How much, exactly?"

"A lot." Severus licked at his lower lip, chin raising a little.

"Turns out I didn't have time to do my trousers up properly."

"No?" Severus shook his head, innocently.

Sirius took a step closer, "Something kept forcing them open ..."

"And what could you do, up there, on your broom ... everyone watching?"

"Just tighten my thighs and ride it as hard as I could."

"Oh-" Severus's eyes closed for a moment as he smirked, lips coming together, "lovely image."

Sirius took a step closer, looking around again before he pulled his long Quidditch tunic up to reveal a very large, still partially wet stain all over the front of his trousers.

"Mmm." Severus reached down, trailing a single finger over the spot, "Was it good?"

Sirius swallowed hard, his trousers still opened at the top, revealing the groove of his pale hip and thick, dark hair. "In front of hundreds of people? It was fucking amazing ..." there was a wicked, satisfied purr to his voice, "I'm a bit of an exhibitionist."

"I am aware."

Sirius cast another sly look over his shoulder and stepped closer, his own hand going into his pants, pulling out his cock, as hard as it was when he left Severus. "I've never wanted someone so badly ..." he purred, dragging his tongue over Snape's neck, "never."

Severus covered Sirius by the hand as he held himself. He's eyes closed lightly and a small smile curled the corner of his mouth, "What is it, you want so badly?"

"That's just it, anything, I'll take anything-" Sirius moaned, almost silently, "Your hand on me, I'll suck you off right here, fuck you, lick your balls, let you take me again ... I'm ... crazy about you."

"Crazy, indeed. I think, I might enjoy trying to satisfy your lust."

Sirius kissed Severus's neck, pressing him up against the wall, gently.

Severus looked off to the side, his hand against the back of Sirius’s head, fingering his sweaty black hair, "You smell so good to me."

"Sweat," Sirius moaned, "Quidditch gear" he sucked the skin at the front of Snape's throat, "and what else?"

"Sex, cum ... dirt and blood."

"I want to get you off again-" Sirius whispered.

"Yes ..." Severus gasped, fingers pressed against his scalp.

"Do you hear anyone?" Sirius panted, wriggling his trousers down to his strong thighs, just low enough.

"Just you."

Sirius turned so that his back was to Severus again and raised the back of his Quidditch robes, exposing his toned, perfectly round ass as he bent over again, palms against the opposite wall.

"Oh-" Severus leaned against Sirius’s backside, spooning him as Sirius pressed back, fitting perfectly against Severus’s hips. "For me" his hands moved up Sirius’s shirt, across his stomach.

"Oh, yeah ... for you."

"Why?" Severus purred softly, rubbing his face against the collar of Sirius’s robes, letting the sweat brush over his nose and face.

Sirius turned his head, looking back, "Because I don't want anyone else."

"Why?" Severus pressed his second hand down Sirius’s backside, palming one cheek of his ass, parting him, rubbing the side of his finger against his entrance.

"Oh-" Sirius gasped, closing his eyes, "I can't stop thinking about you ..."

"Good dreams?" Severus removed his hand, spitting on the tips of his fingers before stroking Sirius along his ass again, easing him open.

Sirius groaned, "Woke up fucking my mattress this morning."

Severus kissed the back of Sirius's neck with a groan as well, pressing his finger in further, curling up, the tips pressing against a sweet spot.

"AH!" Sirius cried out sharply, "goddamnit ... yes."

"I wonder, sometimes ... if you'll still let me touch you like this, after the new year." Severus fingered him.

"Mmm ... I don't want to stop ..." he confessed breathlessly under Severus's brand of interrogation, as effective as veritaserum itself.

Severus stilled instantly, hand tight over Sirius’s stomach, holding him close, "Sh-" he looked off to the side.

Sirius gasped, freezing, his eyes going wide.

"Meeoowww ..."

Sirius mouthed a string of swears before he pulled Severus with him away from the source of Mrs. Norris's meow.

Severus had gasped, "Ah- you … alright?" he asked, having had to take his finger out suddenly when Sirius moved.

Sirius nodded, "Your room instead?" he asked, righting himself as quickly and quietly as he could.

"Dog? Can you change?"

"Yeah ... I'll meet you at the portrait door ... ten minutes..."

Severus nodded, "Ten minutes" but didn't dare a good-bye kiss, just, faded back into the next hallway and disappeared.

*                    *                    * 

Ten minutes later exactly, the black dog could hardly be seen in a shadowed alcove near the Slytherin entrance.

Severus opened the door from the inside, looking out, clicking his tongue.

The black, bear-like dog ambled out, moving quietly, only daring to wag a little when he saw Severus at the door.

"Good dog." Severus smiled instantly, petting him.

Padfoot licked Snape by the hand quickly and followed him inside, careful.

The way was cleared completely as Severus led the dog into his room, closing and locking the door behind them. Petting the animal behind the neck with a little smile.

Padfoot jumped up on the bed, wagging again as he nosed through the blankets.

Severus laughed, "Does that smell good?"

The dog laid down, rolling and wriggling in the sheets before it turned into Sirius who just grinned, "Smells like you."

Severus moved over to the bed, leaning against the edge as he reached up and stroked a hand over Sirius’s cheekbone, down the side of his neck.

"Hi ..." Sirius murmured, stretching out.

"Hello, Sirius."

Sirius reached up, thumbing Severus's lips, "That voice does it for me all the time ..."

Severus kissed the offered thumb lightly, sucking on the tip, then gently biting with his teeth.

"Mmm, tease ..."

"Why do you say that."

"I've never been in your mouth."

"Your tongue has."

"See? Tease."

"Ask me properly."

Sirius groaned a little but licked his lips and took a breath, "Severus, can you please, please suck my cock?"

"Yes, I can."

"But will you?" Sirius took Severus's thumb now and started to nibble at it, "Tell you what ... I'll do it to you at the same time ..."

"Mm ... no, as interesting as that sounds, no. Let me do it properly, without distraction" Severus said, moving over Sirius, reaching down and undoing his pants.

Sirius moaned softly, surprised as he watched Severus. The pureblood pulled off his robe and long shirt, leaving only his trousers and leather Quidditch gloves on.

Severus slid down, moving between Sirius’s legs as he eased his pants just off his hips, reaching hand in and began to palm him, drawing him out; his focus remained on Sirius and his own hand, watching what action prompted which reaction. Severus stroked him, licking at the underside of his shaft, sucking on the salty skin with a soft groan. Severus stroked him, licking at the underside of his shaft, sucking on the salty skin with a soft groan.

Cock almost at full hardness again and Severus's hand around it made the pureblood moan wickedly, his head falling back. "Ahh ..." Sirius arched his back sharply, his eyes watching Severus's eyes over his flat stomach.

Trailing his tongue over his length, up to his head, Severus parted his lips and took Sirius into his mouth, tongue pressed against the head of his sex, pushing it up against the roof of his mouth, sucking on it.

"Ahh!" One of his limber legs slipped over Severus's shoulder as he arched again, "yess ... yesss ... ah, there ... mm ... sensitive ... when I'm being ... Oh ... almost forgot how much ..."

"Mmm-mmm" Severus smiled around him, sucking on him, lips firm and tight as he bobbed his head, letting Sirius’s sex slide against his tongue.

"OhhhhSeverus, Severus ... that's good, that's- Oh- sogoodsogood, there-" His eyes widened and he smiled as Snape's tongue hit the base of his cock, and then they closed again but the smile remained as he gasped, clutching the blankets under him with one hand.

Severus groaned, hearing his name, his name, said like that, said like that by Sirius Black. He closed his eyes lightly, hair falling across his face as he sucked, tongue wrapping around Sirius’s length, stroking it, taking him further.

"Mm! Sev- ohhh." His other leg went over Severus's shoulder too and Sirius was watching, breathless at Snape taking him in.

One hand cupped Sirius’s ass, the other was pressed against the small of Sirius’s back, supporting him as best he could as he sucked his first cock.

Black's hips snapped up as he gasped, the sight of Severus's lips around him was almost too much, and he turned his head, BITING the blankets he'd fisted and moaning around them.

Severus squeezed Sirius’s firm ass, then slid his hand up his hip, over the flat of his stomach, just touching, stroking, petting him as he sucked him off, letting him push and thrash.

"Ah... AH AH AH AH- OH" Sirius gasped, trying to stop himself but it was too late, he pulled out of Severus's mouth a little, "I-" and came so hard that the only part of him touching the bed were his wide shoulders.

Severus choked on him at first, not expecting it like that, so fast, spiting, leaking out the side of his mouth before he managed to swallow with a groan, licking at him wildly to clean him as he sucked, panting when he could.

"Ahhhohhh ...OHHH ... Oh ... sev I'm ... oh ... fuccccccccccccccckkk, Severusssss" Sirius calmed slowly, still panting.

Severus helped lower Sirius back down, a hand on either thigh, keeping him parted as he sucked him clean until his lips were sore. Pulling his mouth off slowly, he looked up at Sirius, "Still a tease?"

"Oh ... mmm no ... fuck ... I'm ... sorry, I just ... couldn't last."

"Did you enjoy yourself?"

"Yes-" Sirius moaned, "did you?" His body was virtually glowing, loose limbed, relaxed.

"Yes." Severus smiled, moving up Sirius's body, curling against him, licking the corner of his own lips, "So don't be sorry."

"Mmm ... is there anything I can do ... to finish you off?"

"You want to kill me?"

Sirius laughed and hugged Severus close, kissing his lips, "Mmm, no ... not quite."

"Stay the night."

Sirius rolled over, laying over Severus, "Again?" he murmured, brushing Snape's heavy hair off of his face.

"Yes." Severus looked up at Sirius, touching his arm.

Sirius nodded, leaning down to kiss Severus, this time, very, very softly.

Severus smiled a little, just touching Sirius, trying not to be too greedy for him, but ... needing him, close.

Sirius sighed, kissing Severus's neck now, murmuring something inaudible.

"Hm?"'

"Nothing ..." he moaned, smiling.

Severus just sighed, deep and slow, calm and soon enough, asleep.

Sirius murmured it again before falling asleep with him.

*                    *                    *

"So, how did you get a room all to yourself?"

"By being a bastard." Severus said vaguely, curled up against the body next to him, just the two of them in the dark of his room. Nights were long and cold in winter, and the window that held back the Black Lake was frosted over, making the view that much more murky, not that it mattered much, as Severus usually kept the curtain drawn across it.

"Even in Slytherin? Wow ... that's some impressive bastardry."

Severus smirked in the darkness, "First year, imagine ... no one wanted to be my dorm mate."

"First years are idiots."

"Yes, I quite agree."

"I mean, I don't feel like the same person I was back then. I was still a little high on my parent's bullshit about blood status and pureblood ritual-" His voice was intensely bitter.

"So was I ... to some extent."

"Your parents were like that?"

"No, not like you're thinking. My mother ... made it clear to me that blood mattered, that I should be associated with better blood then myself, even subservient ... because even that would better myself."

"Oh FUCK that!"

Severus laughed a little, "Yes, thank you."

"That's just ... " he growled to himself, "how the hell can anyone tell their own bloody kid that they have to be subservient to someone else just ... RRR."

"I can tell. You would have adored my mother. And father, I'm sure."

"Your Dad's not a wizard, is he?"

"No. I'm a halfblood." Severus admitted, finally. A great secret he had kept all seven years at Hogwarts, only now uttering the truth, casually.

"And you ... hang around with McNair and LeStrange?"

"LeStrange and your Black, cousins ... not McNair, he's ... frightful, actually. But yes, I do."

"How? How can you listen to them talk about all that crap?"

Severus sighed, "It's just ... a great, act. Just a nod or sharp comment goes a long way, it has, from the beginning, it was enough to be left alone, my blood and family unquestioned."

Sirius sighed and tightened his arms around Severus, rubbing his shoulder, "If Regulus starts acting like that, just tell him you don't take shit from anyone who peed in the ice box when they were four."

"I ... ah, alright. I'll keep that in mind."

"He shouldn't, anyway, he's ... he's a good kid, just too afraid of letting the parents down."

"He is very polite, when he speaks."

"Yeah ..." Sirius sighed, and was silent for a long, long moment. "That's the only thing I regret about running away."

"Talking to him?"

"He won't talk to me. Probably afraid to."

"You are in the same school, Sirius, I'm sure ... no, not my business, but even ... a letter."

"Maybe. I can't imagine what my ... his mother's told him about what I did."

"So. You tell him."

"He's intelligent, he can sort out what he wants to believe, truth or otherwise."

"Maybe the truth is bad enough."

Severus sighed, "He's your brother, and that's your business, Sirius."

"You don't have any, do you?"

"Brothers? No."

"Sisters? Not that I'm interested."

"No ... no, no siblings. Lucky them, those unborn."

"You did okay."

Severus laughed, "Doesn't feel like it, but ... thankyou."

"You're top of the year academically ... almost." the wink could be heard in his voice, "you might not be liked but you're respected by all the professors, you'll land a great job after graduation, I'm pretty much the only one with the balls to pick on you anymore, and you have a gorgeous, suave, very debonair ..." Sirius paused, "boyfriend."

Severus smiled, finding and kissing Sirius’s neck in the darkness.

Sirius giggled, squirming, "Don't get all mushy on me ... I said it ..."

"Yes ..." Severus purred, "You did."

"Mmm ... you like it?" Sirius kissed Severus's face, over to his ear, nibbling on it.

"Yes, I do."

"But you're not going to call me that in public are you?" Sirius kissed him again, "No ... you're going to refer to me as your manly sexanator cyborg from the future."

Severus laughed at this, openly.

Sirius snickered and kissed his neck, pinning him, "Come on, say yes."

Severus however did not struggled, he didn't want to, "No" he laughed.

"Wait ... that sounded like a word I don't understand! Did you mean ... yesssss?"

"No."

"Try again-" another kiss to Severus's neck, biting a little, "Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes ... Yes, Sirius."

"Noo-"

Sirius moved his mouth, biting a tendon near the back of Snape's throat, "Yesss ..." he moaned around it.

"Oh..."

"Ohh?" Sirius bit again, sucking this time, "yes"

"Sirius ... ah-"'

"Mmm?" Sirius started to grind the muscle of his tongue against the sensitive spot.

"Sirius ... FUCK ... Sirius ... that ah!"

Black moaned, sucking again, "Say it ..."

"... yes ..."

Rewarding Snape, Sirius started to work his tongue against that spot again, then grazing it with his teeth by turns.

Severus groaned, hands going to Sirius, along his shoulders as his back arched.

"There," the former heir hummed, "not so bad when we compromise, is it?"

"It's ... good"

"Really good ..." Sirius kissed his neck again, "so ... what am I?"

"You are ... ... I've completely forgotten, except that part about you being my boyfriend."

Sirius LAUGHED outloud and just laid on Severus, laughing into his chest.

"You're laughing."

"Manly sexanator cyborg from the future!"

"Not my boyfriend?"

Sirius looked up, "Alright, alright ... I'm your boyfriend. Happy?"

"Yes. Very." Severus sat up, kissing Sirius again.

Sirius hummed, arms going around Severus's back as he sat up. The pureblood paused, and pulled back looking stunned. "I just realized that means I have a boyfriend now. And it's you."

Severus stopped kissing Sirius, though was breathing lightly against his lips, inches away from him in the darkness, "Have you changed your mind already?"

"No!" Sirius laughed, "I've just never actually had one before ..." Black kissed Severus again, almost smiling too hard to manage it for a moment.

"Ah-!" Severus laughed as well, mauled by Sirius, feeling like his canine counterpart was trying to give him over enthusiastic kisses again

Sirius gave a deep, maniacal laugh, one that hinted at plots for world domination, "You know what that means, right? We now, by international law, have to drink everything out of the same adorable glass with two different straws! Milkshakes! Movies! You have to bring me to a movie and give me a corsage or something"

"Wh- ... what? You did not grow up in the 50s ... I'm ... what?"

Sirius continued to cackle ominously, kissing Severus's face all over and starting to tickle him.

"Ah-!" Severus pushed Sirius back with his forearm, "Stop that!"

Sirius collapsed into a pile of laugher, "I knew it. I KNEW you were ticklish"

"I'm not ticklish, your inner dog is too excitable!"

"Leave my inner dog out of this or I'll pee in your bed"

"Don't you dare"

Sirius leaned up and licked Severus's cheek, pinning him down, all warm and still laughing.

"Ugh ... SIRIUS"

"Going to have me put down?" Sirius asked sweetly, moving his tongue to Severus's neck.

"I'll ... ohhhh ..."

"Mmhmmm ... " Sirius licked Snape's neck again, amused at just how easily the stoic boy could be brought to a passive, groaning lump in the bed. It pleased the rebel prince to no end that he was the cause of it.

"Maybe ... I should see if I can ... oh, get ... permission to ... keep a dog."

"Keep a dog? Really? So you can have me in here all the time?"

"When ... whenever you're not being ... Sirius Black, yes."

"Wait ... seriously?"

"You don't want to."

"No. I mean, yes. I mean ... you'd really want me around that much?"

"Well, not always as you" Severus laughed, teasing him, "I like you as a dog ... that way, we can be in public together, in a way."

Sirius was quiet in the dark for a long moment.

"You are allowed to say no."

 Severus was kissed, deeply, wordlessly, pulled close by the runaway pureblood and held.

"Mm-" Severus wrapped his arms around Sirius again, stroking his back slowly - it was still too early for them - them - for him to tell what this reaction meant.

"If you get permission-" Sirius mumbled against Snape's lips, "you'll have to get me a collar, you know."

"Yes ... yes, I would. You'd wear it?"

Sirius laughed again, purring, "To class, to bed, everywhere."

"Oh?" Severus smirked, "Kinky."

"Nothing wrong with that" he hummed.

"No, I agree. Nothing wrong."

"I'd be shocked if you didn't have a few."

"Collars?"

"Kinks ..."

"Possibly."

"Possibly?" Sirius grinned in the dark, "and how would one learn more about these possible ... predilections?"

"Perhaps in time."

"Come on ... just one?"

Severus was quite for a long time, "No, not now. I think I might have heart failure if I came back to my room one day to see that you were all ... prepared and ready to go with ... and ... yes, no ... No. Not now."

Sirius sat bolt upright, "You have to tell me now! You can't say something like THAT and not tell me!"

Severus smiled a little, "No."

"I'll ... reward you for telling me." His pout was audible.

"I'm sure you would."

"A hint?"

Severus thought again, taking his time, "Mm, no."

Sirius groaned, "Goddamn it! Okay, I'll ... tell you one of mine if you tell me one of yours."

"I already know one of yours."

"Not the good one."

"Oh? Public sex is not the good one?"'

Sirius shook his head, "Nope."

"So tell me then, what's the good one?"

Black scoffed, "How dumb do you think I am?" he paused, a hand over Snape's lips, "Don't answer that. You have to tell me your first."

"I'll tell you a hint, as you said." Severus mumbled against his hand.

Sirius moved his hand, considering, "Hint for a hint ..."

"Leather."

Sirius swallowed, and nodded, breathing a little harder, "Leather ..." he repeated.

"And you?"

Black considered for a long moment, chewing his lower lip, "Escaping."

"Yes? And does ... not escaping, count? As long as there is an attempt?"

"I'm afraid that would be more than a hint, Mssr." Sirius kissed him again, slowly.

"Just trying to keep things interesting for you."

"Just trying to get something for nothing is more like it."

"Sirius?"

"Mhm?"

"What turns you off? Completely? Utterly and should never be discussed again?"

Even Sirius's breathing became quieter, "Fathers."

"Ok."

He sighed, taking a moment before he asked, "You?"

"I’m not certain … verbal punishment."

Sirius nodded and moved closer, his head resting under Severus's chin, able to hear the pulse in his neck.

"Fair enough."

Combing his fingers through Sirius's hair, Severus lay still, and after a long moment, sighed, finally breathing out.

"Now I feel like a complete shit for calling you names."

"I won't say that it was alright, because it wasn't but ... I am mildly understanding, did you mean them?"

"No." Sirius shook his head, "I was an asshole, didn't know what I was talking about."

Severus nodded, kissing Sirius's forehead.

Sirius smiled a little, returning the kiss to Snape's neck.

"Staying for Christmas?"

"Yes."

"Me too. Imagine that."

"Hm. Yes, imagine."

"I'm sure Dumbledore will be ready to break up a fight at the Christmas dinner ..." Sirius laughed.

"Who's fighting?" Severus asked innocently.

"Well, you'll probably start it, anyway."

"Oh, would I?"

"Have you met you?"

"No. I am in bad correspondence."
 
"Not talking to yourself these days?"

"I try avoiding such signs of insanity."

"Good, you'd meet you and run off with yourself, leaving me forlorn and so on."

"I hardly believe that, Sirius."

Sirius put his freezing cold feet against Snape's calves, "Why's that?"

"Ah- Sirius-" Severus squirmed, "You're cold ..." he huffed, "and because, if I can stand to be sickenly honest for a moment, I cannot stand myself."

"Maybe that's why we get along," he sighed, "we're nothing alike."

"Hm."

Sirius's feet found Snape's leg again with a triumphant snicker.

"For fucks sake!" Severus pinched Sirius's side.

"Oww!" Sirius laughed, rubbing it, "Sadist!"

"Possibly."

"I meant it in the nicest possible way of course."

"Yes, of course." Severus smoothed his hand over Sirius's side, then over the curve of his ass.

"Mmm ..." Sirius moved closer, hip to hip with Snape, "this is nice, actually."

"Good."

"Jesus-" Sirius took great pride in being fluent in muggle profanity, "is that light coming through the lake?"

"Maybe a little ... we've been up all night."

"Talking! We stayed up all night talking?" Sirius laughed, "I think we're supposed to have international coffee now and walk down a beach."

"That might be nice, in summer" it was a suggestion, and a test to see just how far Sirius's mind went with them.

Sirius yawned and rested his body against Severus, save for his feet of course, "Mhm, might be, actually. I don't like fancy coffee, I'll have a beer or something."

"Yes, because giving you beer and putting you by the beach is a brilliant idea." Severus smiled against the top of Sirius's head, holding him, petting his back. A part of him still warned against getting too used to this, but for the moment, there was no escape, he was enjoying himself. 

"It's all sorts of brilliant." Sirius sighed and his breathing slowed, evening out.