When Doves Cry

Check Yes Juliet

~~Don't sell your heart Don't say we're not meant to be~~
As the weeks passed, Sirius, James, and Remus seemed to still be preoccupied by whatever secret it was that they were hiding. I would often catch James and Remus watching Sirius, and he was frequently staring off into the distance, a crease in his eyebrows and a frown on his face. Peter seemed just as confused as I was, which I have to admit made me feel a little better. At least I wasn't the only Marauder who didn't know.
I wasn't sure if it was just my imagination or not, but Sirius seemed to be distancing himself from me, too. He no longer came up to me just to tell me something silly that he had done, he didn't joke around with me at every opportunity he got, and he had stopped flopping down onto my in the common room, claiming he had no idea I was there. In fact, he hardly spoke to me at all. We were fifth years, so our load was a lot heavier than we were used to, but I really doubted that had anything to do with it.
"James, is Sirius avoiding me?" I asked one day at lunch. Sirius was once again contemplating some allusive thought, so he wasn't paying attention to our conversation.
"Er... No, Roxi. Why do you ask?" James said, suddenly very much interested in his hair. Or, more interested than usual.
"Hey Sirius," I said loudly, getting his attention. He looked up at me and blinked, like he was having trouble pulling himself from his thoughts.
"Need something?" he asked.
"No, just wondered why you were so quiet today." And yesterday, and the day before, and last week, I mentally added.
He shrugged and mumbled something unintelligible before turning away again.
"That. That is why I think he's avoiding me. He won't even talk to me. Have I done something to make him angry?"
"You haven't done anything, Roxi," Remus said. "He's just... preoccupied. Give it time and it'll pass." He glanced at Sirius with a little half frown. "I hope," he muttered.
I sighed in exasperation. "Well that's incredibly unhelpful. Will one of you just tell me what's wrong with him?"
"Will you tell us what Remus knows that we don't?" Sirius said, startling all of us.
"Oh," I said. "Well..."
"I'll tell you what I'm hiding when you tell me what you're hiding."
"Wait, what? No! We had a deal, Sirius!"
"Why should I tell you everything about me if you don't do the same for me? You got all mad about us keeping secrets, but you're keeping secrets too."
"Yeah, but it's different in my case!"
"How so?" Sirius challenged, looking me straight in the eye for the first time in nearly two weeks.
"Sirius," Remus said. "Shut it. It really is different. You don't know what you're talking about."
"Exactly!" Sirius said. "I have no idea what this big secret of hers is, but she has the nerve to sit there and judge me for keeping something from her! Where's the sense in that?"
"The sense is that what she doesn't want to share is much, much bigger than what you don't want to share," Remus said. "And that you already promised her you'd tell her, and you hadn't agreed on the circumstances you just added. So either you go against your word as a Marauder, or you drop it."
Sirius stared at Remus like he couldn't believe his ears, but Remus had him cornered, and he knew it. "Fine," he said in annoyance. "I'll drop it. For now."
"And speaking of what you're keeping from me," I said, raising my eyebrows at Sirius. "It's been a little over two weeks since you promised to tell me. When will I get to know?"
Sirius frowned, running his hands through his hair. "I'm working on it, all right? Just... give me some time."
"Well, stop avoiding me! I will become very annoying and leech myself to your side if you don't. And you don't want that, do you?"
"No, that would probably be bad," James said with a snicker. Sirius elbowed him in the ribs, quickly silencing James's laughter.
"I'll stop avoiding you," he said.
"Why were you avoiding me in the first place?" I asked, pouting at him jokingly.
"I didn't want you to try and force my secret out of me. A man has to have some mysteries about him!" he said dramatically.
I laughed and shook my head. "You're silly," I said affectionately.
"Thank you, m'dear," he answered in a pompous, older voice. Like he was trying to be some prestigious old guy.
Lunch ended soon after this, and we all left together, one big happy family again. James had his arm slung around my shoulders, I had my arms slung around James and Sirius's shoulders, Sirius had his arm slung around my and Remus's shoulders, Remus had his arm slung around Sirius and Peter's shoulders, and Peter had his arm slung around Remus's shoulders. We made quite a long line walking down the hallway, forcing people to move out of our way. But what did we care? We were happy.
Things remained good for the rest of the week, but by Saturday, Sirius was acting fidgety. I was starting to think he had some serious (no pun intended) mental issues. I had been eating lunch with Mason, but as we were making our way outside to enjoy the nice day, I noticed Sirius was leaning against a wall, no other Marauders in sight, appearing to be talking to himself. He was receiving numerous looks from passersby.
I frowned and stretched up on my tiptoes to kiss Mason briefly. "I'll meet you outside. I just need to check on Sirius really quickly, all right?"
Mason nodded and headed for the doors, looking a bit put off about my leaving him behind to check on Sirius. When I walked over to Sirius, he didn't even notice me until I snapped my fingers under his nose.
"Hey, earth to the dog star! You all right, Paddy?"
"Roxi," he said, staring at me like there was something really important about me standing in front of him.
"Er...yeah? You need help? You look a little out of it."
Sirius continued to stare at me, this odd look on his face. It was like he was preparing himself for something. He took a deep, steadying breath and grabbed my arms, pushing me up against the wall.
"Hey, what--??" I started indignantly, but I never got to finish my sentence. Before I knew what was happening, he was kissing me with all the passion and force befitting a Gryffindor. I was frozen with shock, my body going numb. But my mind was working rapidly. It all made sense now. What Sirius hadn't wanted to tell me, why he had been avoiding me, even why he always disapproved of my boyfriends. Sirius had feelings for me. Judging by the force of his kiss, they were quite strong, very non-platonic feelings, too.
I was dangerously close to contemplating the way my heart was pounding, and how dizzy his kiss made me feel, so I had to end the kiss. Not to mention letting him kiss me when I was dating Mason was very, very wrong. So, taking a figurative deep breath since my mouth was being occupied, I raised my right hand and back slapped Sirius across the face.
"What the bloody hell do you think you're doing?" I asked, glaring at him.
"I'm claiming you for my own," he answered, completely undeterred by my reaction to his kiss.
"You're what? You can't just claim me, I'm not a dog or an object. And besides, Mason has every claim to me!"
"He's not right for you, and you know it," Sirius challenged, staring me in the eyes. "Come on, admit it. My one kiss was better than all of his put together. Because you and I have a certain chemistry, a connection that he could never understand. We've got our evil parents, snobby brothers, and the same friends and interests. What do you have in common with him? He's a Ravenclaw who considers studying to be fun."
"He's my boyfriend, you git! Do you really think insulting him is gonna make any of this better for you?"
He grinned at me, the smile rather wolfish in nature. "I could always try snogging you again."
"No," I said forcefully. "Look, I'm sorry, but I'm happy with him. And he's expecting me right now. I have to go." I stepped around Sirius, refusing to look at him as I walked past.
"Roxi," he said, reaching out and grabbing my wrist. I couldn't help it. I looked back at him. "I'm not giving up so easily," he said. "I am determined to make you mine."
I sighed and pulled my hand away from his. "You can't, Siri. I'm sorry." I made it only three steps before I looked up to see someone had been watching us the entire time. Someone I thought had gone outside to wait for me. Mason.
From behind me, I heard a huff of annoyance as Sirius, too, spotted Mason, and then the sound of him walking off. Leaving me alone with my boyfriend, who had just seen me snogging my best friend. This was not turning out to be my day.
"I'm sorry," I said automatically, knowing I hadn't wanted Sirius to kiss me, but feeling bad all the same. "I really had no idea he was gonna do that. If I had, I would've just walked out those doors with you."
He remained silent, just staring at me. I began to chew on my bottom lip nervously, not sure if I should move closer to him or not. Thankfully, he moved closer so I didn't have to choose. He walked to my side and gently grabbed my hands in his, gazing down at me with sad eyes.
"Sirius was right, wasn't he?" he said in a low voice.
"About what?" I asked, glad he was at least saying something to me.
"You felt more in that one kiss from him than you ever have in all the times we've kissed."
"What? No! No. I--" I stopped, biting my lip again. Because a part of me didn't agree with what I was saying.
"You want him," he said sadly.
"I want you!" I argued.
"Who do you want more?"
I didn't say anything, unsure how to respond to that question. But I didn't have to. He was gazing into my eyes, reading the truth there that I couldn't bring myself to say.
He sighed sadly. "It's okay, Roxi. I understand. He was also right when he said you have a connection with him that you can never have with me. No matter how much that kills me. You should be with him. He'll make you happy."
"I don't want to," I said softly. "I like being with you. You make me smile."
"But he makes you laugh." He leaned down and kissed me softly, a sad, slow kiss. And then he pulled away, walking slowly down the corridor without looking back. I wanted to run to him and beg him to stay. I wanted to tell him he was wrong, and that I didn't want Sirius at all. But I didn't. Because I would have been lying. And I refused to lie to that wonderful boy.
I turned and made my way to the Gryffindor common room, desperately hoping Sirius wouldn't be there. I really didn't want to face him right then. I was in luck. Wherever he had gone off too, it wasn't there. I made my way to the boys' dorm, hoping one of the other three would be in there. Not surprisingly, Remus was sitting on his bed, reading a book. He looked up when I came in, and his face immediately frowned in concern.
"Are you all right?" he asked, setting aside his book and leaning forward.
"Next time someone's secret is that they like me, give me a little bit of a warning. I was not prepared to have Sirius suddenly snog the life out of me."
Remus's eyes widened in surprise. "I don't know why I didn't see that coming. It's such a Sirius thing to do. Is that why you look so upset?"
"No," I said, walking over to his bed and curling up beside him. "I'm upset because Mason saw the whole thing and dumped me."
"What? Well, did you tell him you had nothing to do with Sirius kiss raping you?"
I gave a half chuckle at his terming. "Yes. But he said I should be with Sirius because he makes me laugh and I have a deeper connection with him than with Mason."
Remus wrapped me in his arms and gently stroked my hair, exactly how my mother would have done, if she were affectionate and actually cared about me. "I'm sorry, Roxi. Do you want some chocolate?"
I smiled lightly and shook my head. "Not right now. I just want to sleep. But I'll probably take you up on that offer later."
He smiled. "I'll make sure I set some aside for you. For now, just go to sleep."
Between the comforting feeling of him stroking my hair, and the rhythmic motion of his breathing, I was soon lulled to sleep. It was nice. Like being a child, falling asleep next to a parent.