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Fic: Marcus

Title: Marcus
Author: seren_canis
Rating: G
Pairing: Remus-Centric, Remus/Sirius
Word Count: 1385
Summary: The man continues to stare at the wall as if it holds the answer to the nightmare he has awoken into. Ever wondered what happened during Ootp when Remus went to talk to the werewolf in St Mungos, when the Order visited Arthur? This author did, so here's my take on things.
Author's notes: This is me trying to be terribly original, but honestly this fic was borne out of curiousty, not self-importance :). Marcus Haywood is strictly JKR's character, I just gave him a name and a voice! Comments & feedback are greatly appreciated. Enjoy!



“Hello.”

The man doesn’t stir.

“I’m Remus Lupin.”

The man continues to stare at the wall as if it holds the answer to the nightmare he has awoken into. Remus notes the full, cold plate of food on the man’s bed-side table.

“I wondered if I could talk to you,“ Remus swallows. “I’m a werewolf”. He doesn’t add the ‘too’ or the ‘as well’. There is no need.

This finally gets a reaction out of the man who slowly, like paper, turns his head. His face is as colour-less as hospital food and he has the eyes of an animal who has accepted their fate. He has wavy brown hair messed by sleep and intelligent blue eyes. Remus smiles.

He holds out his hand and pretends to ignore the chart printed with the man’s name. “How do you do, Mr - ?”

“Haywood. Marcus Haywood.”

“How do you do, Mr Haywood?”

The man looks at Remus’ extended hand and Remus is sure he is looking at the various white and pink scars that coil across his knuckles and wrists. The man doesn’t budge and Remus pulls his hand back self-consciously.

“So, what? You’ve come to tell me life from now on is going to be all roses and normal and happy families, have you?” says Marcus. He shifts again, causing the light to glint off the blue in his eyes. He keeps his gaze firmly on the clenched fists in his lap. This is the first time Remus has heard the man talk properly, and now he has started it seems he won‘t stop. “You’ve come to tell me how well adapted and integrated and happy you are, with loving friends and a blossoming love life? How you live almost like a real person? How open and forward thinking everyone is nowadays-”

Remus hears the almost tangible spite in the mans voice and doesn’t begrudge him. He also hears the tightness in the man’s voice now and he can tell by the whiteness of his knuckles he is working himself into a state. Remus opens his mouth to speak.

“-I suppose someone from the Psychiatric department sent you,” grumbles the man.

Remus laughs. He can’t help it. “Actually, no. I’m just here visiting a friend.”

This causes Marcus to look up and Remus can now see how drained he is. And the relief in his face. “Really?”

Remus nods and tries to smile in what he hopes is a warm way. “Arthur Weasley over there is my friend.” He gestures to the bed where Arthur lies, surrounded by the others.

“Oh,” says Marcus. “I’m sorry, I just thought - “

“Forget it,” says Remus. “Arthur told me what happened to you and I just wanted to…”

“Reassure me?” asks Marcus in a voice between mocking and hopeful.

Remus thinks about this for a moment. “No,” he hears himself saying.

Marcus looks up at him and he seems grateful. Or so Remus hopes.

Remus thinks back to waking up in hospital when he was five years old, having never spent a night away from home in his life. He saw the wide, white walls and panicked, not even stopping crying when his mother appeared at his side, all cool palm against his forehead and empty reassurances.

He screamed at the memories of the nightmare of the night before and the searing pain in his shoulder that went straight to his gut. Remus remembers the hours of soft spoken comforts his mother had given him, lying in that cold hospital bed. He was five and desperate to believe that monsters only existed in gloomy-looking cupboards and the dark space under your bed, and not inside of you.

Remus was five and needed those reassurances like the air he so desperately gasped for between sobs.

Marcus is - oh god, Remus looked at his chart, he is only 29 - he is an adult and he needs the truth. He doesn’t need it sugar coated and patronising from some shrink, he doesn’t need the cold, clinical facts from distant and fearful Healers. Marcus is an adult and he understands there are more terrifying things to be afraid of than monsters under your bed.

Marcus looks at Remus now. Remus takes a seat next to Marcus’ bed and takes a deep breath.

“It hurts. A lot.”

Marcus looks at his hands.

After a moment, he asks in a quiet voice, “Do you get used to it?”

“No. But…some things make it better,” says Remus with a sad smile to himself as he thinks of soft, felt antlers and wagging black tails.

“Do people treat you differently?”

Remus starts to answer, then finds he doesn’t know what to say. He turns around and looks the group of people behind him, and the words forming on his lips disappear.

Every one of them claimed to like him. Harry had even once claimed he was his favourite teacher, and he and his friends didn’t change this claim after learning he was a werewolf. He had called Arthur Weasley his friend to Marcus, a word he hadn’t used about anyone in all those lost years after James and Lily died. The Weasleys were kind and welcoming, Tonks was friendly and sometimes a little too keen (an observation which caused Sirius much amusement), and even Mad-Eye had surprised him by grunting him a “Happy Birthday” on his birthday this year. He thought with a small smile and a happy realisation that he was terribly fond of them all.

And then, of course, there was Sirius.

Their relationship was nothing like it had been at Hogwarts, or the few happy years that had followed. There was hardly any hesitation or uncertainty, they had already spent half a lifetime getting to know each other inside-out, and Remus felt he knew Sirius like he knew himself. But this Sirius wasn’t the Sirius he had always known, and sometimes life made him cruelly aware of this. Such as the moments when Sirius would involuntarily flinch at his touch, jumping at the sudden feeling of soft finger-tips through decade old robes, or the nights when Sirius woke up sobbing, unable to tell Remus what he had seen.

But he was still Sirius. He still had the same laugh, the moments when he chose to. He still hated brussel sprouts and waking up early, and he still put his feet on the table. He could still talk to Remus for hours and hours and never get bored. He was still ridiculously in love with Remus Lupin. Sirius was still burning fiercely, no matter how dim the light may seem at times, and Remus never stopped loving him.

“For the people that love you,” states Remus, looking Marcus in the eyes, “it doesn’t matter.”

Something seems to flicker and change in Marcus’ coral blue eyes. It is only for a moment, but then Remus always has been good at noticing the little things. It looks suspiciously like hope.

“Do you…” Marcus coughs uncertainly, “do you…have someone?”

Remus thinks of coal-black hair and bright grey eyes. He nods slowly, smiling.

Marcus raises a curious eyebrow, and Remus sees his eyes flicker over to Arthur’s bed. Over to the girl with pretty lips and bright pink hair.

Remus laughs. “Not her. It’s not her. But I have someone, I promise.”

Marcus still looks sceptical, but seems reassured. “And they…don’t mind?”

“I rather think at times, they find it amusing. Or at least, used to.”

Marcus looks just a bit alarmed at this, but Remus laughs it off. “I think it’s safe to say the object of my affection has a rather…unusual sense of humour.”

Marcus has finally stopped playing with his sheets, twisting and shaping it unconsciously in his hands. His face has lost its haunted, worried look and he seems to be thinking over everything Remus has said.

Remus places a gentle hand on Marcus’ own.

“Marcus. You are still you.”

And with that, Marcus gives Remus the first smile he has seen. It is small, as small as the freckle on the back of his knuckle, and just as pale, but it is a smile all the same.

After a moment, Remus lifts his hand, smiles fraternally, then walks back to Arthur’s bed where the others are waiting for him.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
seren_canis
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:16 pm (UTC)
I've never read anything about it either, and I've always wondered why not :) I always thought it was such an interesting line!. Thanks for the lovely comment, so flattered you thought it was well written :D
superpoof
Jan. 3rd, 2011 12:21 pm (UTC)
Ohh really love this, it's tragic somehow since he'll lose Sirius shortly after this :( I love how you describe their relationship through time to time...
seren_canis
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:18 pm (UTC)
....I never thought about that while writing this :'( Now I'm sad xD NEVER LET SIRIUS GO! *shakes Moony*. Thanks for the comment, so glad you enjoyed! :D
mommyconk
Jan. 3rd, 2011 12:26 pm (UTC)
This is such a lovely little fic. I love this line..And then, of course, there was Sirius. and your description of Sirius and their relationship is very sweet.
seren_canis
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:22 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much, glad you enjoyed :). HA, I don't think I could EVER write a fic and not have R/S undertones! xD not even my one fic about innocent 5 year old Remus could stay R/S-free! xD. Thanks so much for the comment :D
wilwa
Jan. 7th, 2011 05:50 pm (UTC)
Beautifully done. Love the descriptions and emotions, specially what you wrote about Remus and Sirius.

Sober and realistic. Well done!
seren_canis
Jan. 7th, 2011 07:27 pm (UTC)
Ha, everyone seems to love the Remus-Sirius bit best :) and who can you blame them? ;)

Thanks so much for the lovely comment, this was one of the first fics I've written so I was quite unsure :) So reassuring to hear you thought it was allright! :D Thanks
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )