Definitely get the feel that your roots in writing come from RP in reading this, but that's certainly not a bad thing! You've captured Remus' emotions and thoughts quite well and it gives the reader a fulfilled sense of his character. You've painted him as sensitive, which I think was spot-on and remains true to the grown-up Lupin we see later in reading the HP books - which, as an occasional writer/reader of fanfic, I always personally look for. I want to FEEL the characters that I've already grown to love that much more and, through your story, my love and inclination towards Lupin has only grown. He's still Remus Lupin, but you've added to him with your own personal twist on his feelings, I guess you could say.
That aside, the ending leaves something more to be wished for. Again, not necessarily a bad thing, depending on whether or not you're looking to extend this into a longer story rather than a one-shot response to a challenge. You've concentrated solely on Remus, with a small mention of Sirius that, again, isn't necessarily a bad thing, but leaves me wishing and wondering for a bit more in terms of others' emotions in the matter.
Overall, beautifully written with a really nice scattering of particularly effective descriptive words (I really liked your use of "staccato", among others) that weren't overused or, in fact, TOO much. Your style is something to be admired and I really hope to read more sometime!
Author's Response: Thank you, Maxine!
I am so glad that you approve of the characterisation. Lupin always struck me as a very sensitive soul, very much in pain and sort of introverted. I hear you about the ending, too. :/ I think it left things really unresolved, which is frustrating, I'm sure. I think the moment in time that I chose wasn't exactly the appropriate one to show too much of Sirius, though. I could really see this expanding into a story of near misses and pointed glares during which Sirius tries to mend his friendship with Remus, but it was too soon for that. It was too soon for 'I'm sorry' or 'Remus, just listen! Please!' or whatever he might say, which is why I chose it for this particular challenge. I tried to pick a point in time when no words were spoken because really, none should have been. So, I guess what I'm saying is, thank you, again. And I'll definitely be thinking long and hard about expanding this one-shot into something a smidgen longer.