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Title: This flip-side of a century (March edition)
Rating: PG
Word Count: ~850
Summary: Three birthdays in the life of Remus Lupin.
Note: Previous parts of the birthday!verse (written since 2008) can be found here (or here on AO3).

March 10th, 1981

The party couldn’t have been any more different from last year’s binge feast if they had tried. For one thing, for all that they were huddled around a small table at the Hog’s Head, none of them were drunk.

Lily and James hadn’t been able to come. Remus had suggested they simply meet at the Order’s headquarters, but Sirius had insisted on “at least half an hour of just us.”

It was only a matter of minutes before they would have to scatter again. They all kept an eye at the ancient clock in the corner. It had been a small miracle that the three of them had found the time to meet at all, even if “half an hour” had been a stretch.

For now, they were sitting here, wands at the ready in case of an attack. Whenever they looked at one another, they could barely muster weak smiles. Only very occasionally did one of them lift his glass to sip at his drink.

Peter looked pale, almost like Remus on his worst day around the full moon, but then none of them had really slept since they had learned of the danger little Harry was in. Sirius’ attention was divided between Remus, the ancient clock and the door.

Remus couldn’t help but feel guilty for disrupting their day, for taking these few precious moments for himself. They hadn’t been able to celebrate Peter’s twenty-first due to the Prewett brothers’ murders; he was well aware that he wasn’t the only one who needed this. But the urge to be somewhere else at the same time refused to go away.

He chose to, had to believe it when Sirius said, “Just you wait, Moony, next year it will all be different.”

March 10th, 1998

All day, all Remus could think about was that Tonks might give birth at any moment.

Technically, as she reminded him whenever she caught him staring at her too long, her due date was still a month away. With the grief over her father and the stress they all were under, they both knew that the margin might not mean anything at all.

It had taken the combined efforts of Andromeda, Remus and Kingsley Shacklebolt to pull her out of active combat. They had known better than to try to keep her out of the war altogether. Now, she was dilligently charge of coordinating assignments for Order members and the few remaining free Aurors.

She was Potterwatch’s most invaluable source of information.

Remus spent most of the day in a heated discussion with Lee, Fred and George, debating a secure location for their next broadcast. “With Hagrid gone, we need to find a way to get news out of Hogwarts,” Fred declared, and they spent another three hours accumulating ideas, most of which were both risky and dangerous. The Easter holidays were approaching, but as George said, “I don’t care what a restrictive bastard Snape is, I would’ve expected Ginny or McGonnagal to get a message out before now.”

“Wish there was more than one Marauders’ map,” Lee muttered, and Remus couldn’t help but agree and silently curse Sirius and James.

So many wizards and witches on the run. Harry, Ron and Hermione who knew where. So many people oppressed. Only one news program willing to tell the truth.

Between work and worrying about the baby, there was more than enough to do. If not for the extra kiss before breakfast and the special pastries before he and Tonks went to bed that night, Remus wouldn’t have known it was his birthday at all.

March 10th, 2011

Remus was still red-faced from laughter when he closed the classroom door behind him. The second-years had been well behaved the entire lesson, but once he had told them to put away their wands, Teddy had whispered “Now” and the entire class had burst into song.

Clearly, this was the downside – or, he thought, amused, the upside – of being a teacher to his own son.

Only Minerva and Neville were sitting at the teachers’ table when he came down to lunch. “I have something for you,” Minerva said before Remus could ask why that was the case.

Curious, Remus took the small gift box out of her hand and opened it. Peering inside, he discovered a matching set of key-shaped gold lockets.

He had seen some of these before, not in gold, but in silver.

A quick sideways glance proved him right. Neville wore one around his neck. If Remus remembered correctly, he had done so ever since he started teaching at Hogwarts.

Poppy had one. So did Hagrid, who had never disclosed what it was for. And young Professor Greengrass, who had started wearing hers after –

Remus couldn’t suppress a gasp. All the married teachers. Severus had said that she had talked to him, but –

“It’s a Portkey,” Neville said helpfully. “A very specific one – it’ll work for you and him and no one else.”

“I – ” Remus tried, but found that he was speechless.

The twinkle in Minerva’s eyes could have rivalled Albus’. “I think it is way past time that you have one of these.”

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