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Chapter 4 : The Secret
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“I wasn’t going to,” I start, putting my fork full of egg down and looking at him. “I mean, you really hurt my feelings last night.” His brow furrows. “But Sirius came over and talked to me. He said you weren’t like that often, and that you were ill right now.” I couldn’t believe how my words were affecting him. He looked so…I don’t know the word for it. Sad? “He told me to come back this morning, that you would be different.”
He hadn’t taken a bite since I started talking. He was just looking at me. I put my hand on his, trying to comfort the sadness that had seemed to grip him. “I’m sorry,” he whispered.
“I’m over it, Remus. I can see you’re a good guy.” I smile at him. “And I think we are going to be really good friends.” He smiles back at me.
“Yeah? I hope your right,” he says. Then he looks around the table. He stares at Sirius, who looks up almost like he could sense the look. Then they both rise and leave. I wait for a moment, and then follow them. What are they doing?
When I walk into the living room, I see the bottom of Sirius’ shoe go up the last visible stair. I reach the top of the stairs, but Remus and Sirius are nowhere to be seen. I walk along the doors, stopping to listen at each one. I reach one that I hear voice behind.
“…at the door.” I hear Remus say. Does he know I’m here, listening?
“How do you know?” I hear Sirius ask.
“Scent.” The next thing I know, Sirius has thrown open the door, and I fall into the room. My face burns with embarrassment. Remus is sitting on a bed, with his face in his hands.
“What are you doing, Tonks?” Sirius forcefully asks.
“I was just wondering where the two of you were.” I say. “I had just got to the door when you opened it.”Sirius looks at Remus, who nods.
“Why?” Sirius asks.
“I don’t know.” Honestly, I don’t. I feel my eyes tear up. Merlin, what is wrong with me? I’m crying over nothing.
“Hey hey, there’s no need for that.” Sirius says, putting his arm around me.
“What’s wrong, Nymphadora?” Remus asks. I shake my head. There is something wrong with me! Why am I crying? Sirius is leading me to the bed. I sit down on it. “Are you afraid of me?” I hear Remus whisper.
“No!” I cry out. Why would I be afraid of Remus?
“Do I make you nervous?”
“No,” I say again. “What’s with all of these weird questions?” Did I say that aloud?
“Well,” yes, I did say it out loud, “your heart rate has increased. Your breathing is quicker than normal, and you ph—”
“How do you know all of that stuff?” I ask. Remus closes his eyes and sighs.
“Might as well tell her, Moony. She’s asked way too many questions, and really knows too much not to figure it out, anyway. Then all she has to do is look at the list to confirm it.” Figure what out? What list?
“Are you a criminal?” I ask. Sirius laughs.
“No, that’s me, remember. Moony here, he’s different. He’s the good one.”
Remus looks at me. “What you have to realize is I don’t tell this to many people. Everyone here knows it, of course. But see, I’m a—”
He didn’t look like he could say it. “What is it, Remus?” I say, putting my arm around him. “You can tell me.”
He whispers one word. He says it so low I almost don’t hear him. “Werewolf.”
That one word resonates in my mind. Werewolf. I look at him. I just can’t believe it.
“Are you sure?” I ask. Sirius laughs again.
“Yeah, we’re sure. I mean, you notice when you hang out with someone who turns into a wolf once a month.”
Remus is a werewolf. I’m still looking at him; still have my arm around him. Am I afraid? I don’t think so. Remus turns to look at me.
“You’re still here.” He sounds amazed. I nod, not trusting myself to speak. I remove my arm from around him. I sense him tense. I put my hands on my temples.
“A werewolf,” I state. It’s not a question. Then I look at him and smile, which seems to shock him even more. “I guess that explains the unemployment.”
He’s still looking at me. “Are you okay with it?”
“I- I’m not sure.” I look at him. “I don’t feel…afraid. I don’t know what I feel. I guess I’m still processing.” Then I understand. Everything. “Oh!” I practically scream. Remus and Sirius both jump. “I get it now. In the living room last night, when you were ‘discussing what happens tomorrow’ this is what you were talking about. The full moon is tonight.” I figured it out! And it explains the mood swings. Then it hits me. “The full moon is tonight,” I say, not so ecstatic. Tonight. “I’m sorry, Remus.” I sit back down on the bed. I hadn’t realized I had stood up.
“What did you guys come up here to discuss?” I ask, trying to change the conversation, which had mostly been me anyway.
“Nothing,” Sirius replies. I’ve figured out that when Sirius says ‘nothing’ it usually means something. But I let it go.
We’re quite for a while. I sit there, beside Remus. I look at him. He’s a werewolf. I just can’t seem to get that thought out of my mind. He doesn’t seem like a werewolf, he seems to be really nice. Also all these people aren’t afraid to be alone with him. Before I realize what I’m doing, I’m poking his arm.
“What are you doing?” he asks.
“I,” I blush. I seem to do that a lot around him. “I’m poking you.” I say, lamely.
“Why?” His expression is guarded. I bet I’ve hurt his feelings.
“Because I- er, I’m not sure.” Merlin this is embarrassing. Why was I poking him?
He looks at me again. “What?” I ask.
He shakes his head. After an awkward pause, I look at them. “So…”
“Yeah?” Sirius asks.
“Er, what do you want to talk about?” Sirius laughs.
“I’m going down stairs.” He walks out the door, shutting it again behind him.
Remus doesn’t say anything, he just watches me. It’s somewhat unnerving. I wish he would stop. Or smile. Anything but that look, like he expects me to run any second.
“Why are you staring at me?”
“Sorry,” he looks down at the floor. “I’m just not used to people being this calm.” Am I calm? Should I be freaking out? Remus sighs and stands up. He glances at me, and then walks to the door. He turns. I think he wants to say something, but he just turns and walks out the door. I follow him. He sits on the couch in the living room. I sit next to him. Why am I following him? He turns and looks at me. I look back. Then, just like when I poked him, my hands are on the sides of this face, cupping his cheeks. I’m holding his face in my hands. Why? Then I hug him. He just sits there, and I guess I’ve shocked him.
I’m hugging a werewolf. Do I care? No. “I don’t care,” I whisper. He breathes deep, and puts his arms around me. He’s hugging back! Why does that excite me?
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