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 Remus was sitting in the chairs by his terminal waiting for his plane. He’d finally snagged a spot near an outlet so that he could charge his phone. He had passed out the night before without charging it and was just lucky he’d remembered to set his alarm or else he might have missed his flight. The term was over and Remus was on his way back to Wales for the Christmas Holiday to visit his parents. He wasn’t exactly looking forward to seeing his dad, as he’d gotten enough chilly silences for a lifetime, but his mum would kill him if he elected to stay in London for Christmas.

           He had already scrolled through all the usual social media apps and watched a few Youtube videos. With nothing better to do, Remus opened Tinder with usual amount of trepidation. Lily had forced him to sign up for the app, claiming it wasn’t as bad as he thought. It had led to a few awkward dates that usually resulted in Remus getting ghosted, and a few even more awkward one night stands that also led to Remus being ghosted. His track record wasn’t the best.

           He was scrolling through, trying to remind him of what Lily had said. “Not everyone is going to have your same interests, Remus. You have to give people a chance.” Remus thought he had given quite a few people a chance and that hadn’t exactly worked out for him. No matter how much he tried he couldn’t swipe right on someone whose entire profile was pictures of them at the gym.

           His finger hesitated over a picture of someone who absolutely couldn’t be real. He had long, dark hair that fell well past his shoulders and grey eyes that Remus thought must have been either contact lenses or photoshopped. High cheekbones and sinful lips the man looked like a model. Remus was not about to get catfished by a picture that was probably of someone famous that he just didn’t recognize. Besides, what kind of a name was Sirius anyway? It was obviously fake.

           He swiped left. Not today, Satan.

           “Hard pass on that guy, huh?” Someone said from above Remus. “Ouch.”

           Remus glanced up and the first thing he noticed were grey eyes. He felt his own eyes widen in surprise as he took in the rest of the guy standing in front of him. It was the guy he had just swiped left on. Here, in the flesh, very much real. “Oh my god,” he said, feeling a blush of embarrassment rise to his cheeks.

           “I’ll try not to take it too personally,” the guy said, sitting down across from Remus and crossing his legs.

           “I-I didn’t – “ Remus said, tripping over his words from his absolute mortification. “I-I thought…”

           “It’s okay,” Sirius said, realizing quickly that Remus was struggling and letting him off the hook. “You don’t have to explain.”

           “I thought you weren’t real!” Remus said, finally able to get the words out and saying them a bit louder than he’d originally intended.

           Sirius raised an eyebrow at him. “I’m just that stunning, huh?” he joked, sliding an elastic off his wrist and putting his hair up into a messy bun.

           Remus swallowed thickly. “You have to be careful with stuff like this,” Remus explained, pretending that seeing Sirius’ hair up like that wasn’t doing things to him. “You see a Tinder profile with a name like Sirius and the picture looks like you…it doesn’t seem all that realistic, does it?”

           Sirius barked out a laugh. “Okay, I’ll give you the name, it’s been a pain in the arse my entire life.”

           Remus found himself leaning forward in Sirius’ direction. “Mine’s not much better,” he assured Sirius with a knowing grin. “Remus Lupin.”

           Sirius grabbed his bag and moved, sliding into the seat next to Remus. “Nice to meet you, Remus Lupin. I’ll have to remember the name so I can tell my mates all about the guy who broke my heart at the airport.”

           Remus ducked his head down. “I don’t think it’s anything as serious as that.”

           “Oh you wound me,” Sirius said, clutching at his chest. “So what’s your chat up line on Tinder? Anything good?”

           “I usually say hi my name is Remus.”

           Sirius rolled his eyes. “No wonder you’re still on there.”

           “Well what’s yours then?” Remus challenged, bumping his shoulder against Sirius’ lightly.

           “Usually something like call me Jaffa cake because I’m looking like a snack!”

           Remus burst out laughing. “I can see why you’re still on there too.”

           Sirius smirked. “Call me biscuit because I wanna be filled with your custard crème.”

           Remus laughed even harder, doubling over and clutching his sides. “Oh god, I can’t breathe!”

           Sirius laughed with him, Remus’ mirth spurring him on until neither of them could stop laughing. By the time Remus calmed down he had tears in his eyes that he quickly wiped away.

           “You’re mental,” he informed Sirius, shaking his head.

           Sirius slung his arm around Remus’ shoulders and pulled him in close as if they were about the share a secret. “It runs in my family,” he said, whispering against Remus’’ ear and making Remus shiver. “In fact it practically gallops.”

           Remus turned his head slightly and looked into Sirius’ impossible grey eyes. “Okay Cary Grant,’ he teased, recognizing the Arsenic and Old Lace reference.

           Sirius’ eyes lit up when Remus called him out. “Fuck, it’s a real shame you passed on me. I think we would have been good together.”

           Remus bit his bottom lip nervously. “Maybe considering we’ve met in real life, we could skip the whole talking on Tinder thing and go right to having each other’s numbers?”

           Sirius considered it for a moment. “You’re not going to give me a fake number, are you?”

           “I wouldn’t do that,” Remus insisted. “Besides, I’m the one who initiated it. Why would I do that if I was just going to give you a fake number?”

           Sirius hummed. “Good point. Although I’m already so wounded by you it’s difficult to think rationally!”

           They swapped mobiles and Remus programmed his number into Sirius’ phone before handing it back to him. “Really?” he said, seeing what Sirius had put in his phone. “You labeled yourself as Sex God Sirius Black?”

           Sirius shrugged. “Oh ye of little faith.”

           Remus blushed. “I’m changing it the first chance I get.”

           “No!” Sirius said indignantly. “You’re going to deny my claim as a deity? That’s very rude, Remus.”

           They called for Remus’ flight to start boarding and Remus found himself disappointed that he couldn’t continue talking with Sirius. At least there was the promise of more conversations to come.

           Remus laughed and got to his feet. “Fine, I’ll keep it. But it’ll be under review after the first time we shag.”

           Sirius’ jaw dropped. “Remus! Now you’ve put quite a bit of pressure on me for our first time together.”

           Remus grinned and bent down so he was mere inches away from Sirius’ face. With a courage he didn’t know he had, he just barely brushed his lips against Sirius’ and enjoyed the little inhale of breath he got in response. “You put the pressure on yourself by programming that as your name in my phone. I’ll have expectations now.”

           Sirius rose to the challenge Remus had set down. He grabbed Remus by the front of his jumper and kissed him fiercely. Remus put his hands on Sirius’ shoulders to steady himself as they snogged in the airport. When he finally pulled back, he was breathless with kiss-swollen lips. “I have to go,” he said softly. 

           “Don’t go to Wales,” Sirius begged, tugging lightly at Remus’ jumper. “Wales is rubbish. Stay here with me.”

           Remus chuckled. “What are you even doing here then if you’re staying in London?”

           “I’m going to Paris for the week to visit my uncle Alfie,” Sirius explained, pressing kisses along Remus’ jawline.

           “Then you’re not staying here either,” Remus reminded him in amusement. “Unless you’re offering to whisk me away to Paris.”

           “Now there’s an idea.”

           “Sirius, no,” Remus said, laughing softly. “Absolutely mental.”

           “Fine,” Sirius said, pressing a kiss to the corner of Remus’ mouth, “I’ll let you go if you promise to be back for New Years and be my date.”

           “So now I’m to be held hostage, is that it?” Remus joked, nipping playfully at Sirius’ bottom lip.

           Sirius balked. “No, I just – “

           Remus silenced him with a kiss. “Yes, I’ll be your date for New Years. Now will you let me board the plane, please?”

           “Fine,” Sirius said, releasing his jumper. “Text me?”

           “I will,” Remus promised, straightening up and fixing his jumper where it had gotten a bit rumpled from Sirius holding it. He grabbed his bag before getting in the queue to get on the plane. He gave Sirius a smile and a little wave before he disappeared through the door.

           He had just found his seat when his phone buzzed in his pocket. He pulled it out and smiled at the name on the notification.  

           Sex God Sirius Black: I’d like to put an unexpected item in your bagging area.

           Remus chuckled and shook his head.

           Remus Lupin: Dreadful. Absolutely dreadful. I rescind my offer to be your date on New Years.

           Sex God Sirius Black: NOOOOOOOO

           Remus Lupin: Also an unexpected item makes it sound kind of rapey.

           Sex God Sirius Black: It’s unexpected because of how large it is.

           Remus Lupin: They all say that.

           Sex God Sirius Black: Haven’t you learned not to doubt me?

           Remus Lupin: I think you have a tendency to over-exaggerate.

           Sex God Sirius Black: Me? Never!

           Remus Lupin: Plane is about to take off. Talk to you later. Plonker.

           Remus arrived in Wales less than an hour later. When he got off the plane, his mum was waiting for him and pulled him into a big hug. His dad was nowhere to be found but that suited Remus just fine. He was in the middle of hugging his mum when his phone went crazy with notifications buzzing.

           “My, aren’t you popular!” Hope said with a grin.

           Remus pulled his phone out. He had fifty-five text messages from Sirius. Shaking his head, he followed his mum out to the car and read them on the way home in between answering questions from his mum.

Sex God Sirius Black: I miss you already.

Sex God Sirius Black: Come back I want more kissing.

Sex God Sirius Black: Fuck, my flight is delayed three hours.

Sex God Sirius Black: I’m bored! Come back!

Sex God Sirius Black: This is a real injustice, Remus. I’ll never forgive you for abandoning me in my hour of need.

Sex God Sirius Black: Just kidding I forgive you.

Sex God Sirius Black: Do you want to get coffee because I like you a latte.

Sex God Sirius Black: Is that one better? More your speed?

Sex God Sirius Black: Fuck this is intolerable.

Sex God Sirius Black: I realize now that I’ve sent you way too many messages and you’re going to be very worried about giving me your mobile number.

Sex God Sirius Black: GO BIG OR GO HOME!

Sex God Sirius Black: I wish you could respond. I like talking to you.

Sex God Sirius Black: How long does it take to get to Wales?! I could swim there faster than this!

Sex God Sirius Black: In case you were wondering, I swiped right on you.

Sex God Sirius Black: Because I’m not a HEARTLESS MONSTER.

Sex God Sirius Black: And I thought you were cute.

Sex God Sirius Black: Although I need to teach you how to take better selfies. You’re absolutely pants at it.

Sex God Sirius Black: The selfies will just be for me though. No more Tinder for you!

Sex God Sirius Black: Or at least I hope.

Sex God Sirius Black: I’m thinking about deleting it myself. Is that too fast? I wouldn’t want to put any more expectations on this than I already have.

Sex God Sirius Black: Bollocks.

Sex God Sirius Black: I deleted it. It’s not like I can’t download it again, right?

Sex God Sirius Black: You probably think I’m a crazy person.

Sex God Sirius Black: Not probably. You definitely think I’m a crazy person.

Sex God Sirius Black: I’ll stop now and leave you alone before I scare you off.

Sex God Sirius Black: Well that lasted all of ten minutes.

Sex God Sirius Black: I went and got a Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks because my chat up line made me want one.

Sex God Sirius Black: Yes, I am 100% that bitch.

Sex God Sirius Black: I hope you don’t think less of me, Remus.

Sex God Sirius Black: Not sure how you could though.

Sex God Sirius Black: I think I’ve probably scared you off. I have a tendency to do that.

Sex God Sirius Black: Not that this kind of thing happens to me a lot.

Sex God Sirius Black: Fuck!

Sex God Sirius Black: Sorry. I’m freaking out a little bit.

Sex God Sirius Black: I like you.

Sex God Sirius Black: Why was it so acceptable for people to write love letters back in Jane Austen time to people they hardly knew but it’s weird if I bombard you with text messages after meeting once and a few snogs?

Sex God Sirius Black: Mr. Darcy wrote Elizabeth Bennett a letter and it was romantic as shit!

Sex God Sirius Black: Did I just make myself Mr. Darcy in this scenario?

Sex God Sirius Black: I feel like you’re much more a Mr. Darcy type than I am.

Sex God Sirius Black: and hey we met because of a misunderstanding!

Sex God Sirius Black: I don’t have a bunch of sisters though. Just a brother named Regulus. We don’t really talk.

Sex God Sirius Black: My Uncle Alfie is sick. Colon cancer. I don’t normally see him for Christmas and just spend it with my friend James.

Sex God Sirius Black: Reg wouldn’t even come with me to see Alfie even though it’s probably going to be his last Christmas.

Sex God Sirius Black: Doesn’t that fucking suck?

Sex God Sirius Black: I’m sure he has his reasons.

Sex God Sirius Black: I don’t really get on with my family.

Sex God Sirius Black: Fuck this is some heavy shit. You running for the hills yet? Blocking my number?

Sex God Sirius Black: Sorry. This isn’t what you signed up for.

Sex God Sirius Black: I’m a bit of a hot mess.

Sex God Sirius Black: Emphasis on the hot.

Sex God Sirius Black: Sorry. I couldn’t help it.

Sex God Sirius Black: I’ll leave you alone until you can actually respond to me.

Sex God Sirius Black: Just know it’ll be difficult for me.

Sex God Sirius Black: If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes have not changed, but one word from you will silence me forever.

Sex God Sirius Black: Okay, I’m really done now.

Remus read them all and then went back and read them again. He tried not to laugh out loud because he didn’t exactly want his mum asking him questions. He didn’t want to share the fact that he had snogged a stranger at the airport and then given him his number. He didn’t think his mum would approve.

Remus Lupin: Oh my god!

Sex God Sirius Black: Moony!

Remus Lupin: What?

Sex God Sirius Black: I was bored so I was thinking up a nickname for you.

Remus Lupin: And that was the best you could come up with?

Sex God Sirius Black: Don’t be mean. I was distraught without you!

Remus Lupin: Yes I can see that.

Sex God Sirius Black: Well you’re texting me so I hope that means I haven’t frightened you off.

Remus Lupin: I was slightly alarmed when my phone went crazy in my pocket. But you won me back with the Jane Austen. I do identify with Mr. Darcy because I too hate speaking to people I don’t know and unnecessary dancing.

Sex God Sirius Black: You spoke to me.

Remus Lupin: Rare exception.

Sex God Sirius Black: Aww that makes me feel special.

Remus Lupin You should.

Sex God Sirius Black: I do

Remus Lupin: I’m sorry about your Uncle. And your brother. And your family. That all really sucks.

Sex God Sirius Black: Thanks. I’ll go into my sordid tragic backstory some other time. But for now my plane is boarding so you get to suffer the way I did.

Remus Lupin: At least I’ll suffer silently.

Sex God Sirius Black: Rude!

Remus Lupin: Have a safe flight.

Sex God Sirius Black: We’ll always have Paris.

Remus Lupin: Here’s looking at you, kid.

                                                           ***

Remus Lupin sat outside with Sirius on the front steps of Sirius’ flat that he shared with James. He was cold and a little bit tipsy, but happier than he could remember being in quite a long time. Their gloved fingers were intertwined as they waited for midnight and the fireworks to start.

They could hear people counting down but Remus’ world narrowed to just Sirius. His nose and cheeks pink from the cold, his head covered with a beanie he’d stolen off Remus. They’d texted continuously over the holiday and since they’d both returned to London, Remus’ life had been filled with Sirius. They fit, in a way Remus had never felt he did with anyone else. Sometimes it made his stomach twist painfully at the thought that now he had something to lose.

But Sirius kept coming back, greedy for Remus – his time and his attention – and it eased the anxiety Remus felt. He thought back to that day at the airport and how he had almost missed this. He’d never been so happy about a mistake before in his life. He wasn’t sure if matching with Sirius on Tinder would have had the same effect that meeting him in person had. But then again, the overwhelming force that was Sirius Black felt kind of inevitable. Maybe they would have ended up here regardless of which was Remus swiped. 

“You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you,” Sirius said at five seconds to Midnight.

“Hey, that’s my line,” Remus teased at three seconds to Midnight. 

Smiling, they both leaned in towards each other, cold lips and warm mouths as they greeted the New Year together.