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Dumbledore's Army

A Collection of Posts Re: The One True Way

Compiled by Corgi

Revision date: September 13, 2002

 

Remus Lupin and Sirius Black: The One True Way?

One of the biggest relationship debates in HP fandom -- after R/H versus H/H. Are Remus Lupin and Sirius Black now, or have they ever been, a couple? Why? Why not? Why do so many writers (and readers) find the idea so attractive?


Veritaserum: Remus/Sirius

Rilia Paravelle

Registered User
(1/27/02 8:43:34 pm )

Not everyone writes what they believe, we write what we find interesting. Sirius and Remus are two very dynamic characters with a lot of baggage and unanswered questions surrounding them. They make a really intense and often angsty pairing [:)] . Some of the best exploration I've seen of Remus' and/or Sirius' characters have been in slash fics. That's why I read them, as a matter of fact that's the only slash ship I read, I'm really just not interested in the rest of them. There may be people who read/write R/S slash because they think its going to happen in cannon but I don't think that's the majority of us (I could well be wrong), many of us like Remus/Sirius because of just that, its Remus and Sirius.

 

StickPegasus
Registered User
Posts: 20
(1/27/02 9:14:20 pm )

I'm a huge fan of R/S- until I read one of these such fics I had a sort of aversion to slash. I guess it kinda grew on me, because I'm hooked, though I haven't brought myself to read another slash pairing. These characters are so mysterious to us... the best part about R/S is that it is BELIEVABLE. There is no canonical evidence to either prove or disprove it, so as fanfic writers we have a lot of liberty there. Remus and Sirius are my FAVORITE characters. They've been through a lot, both together as best friends and apart. Their lives were shattered by the same event. It seems very logical to me that there could be a romantic relationship between them- they deserve each other, I think. It seems to make their lives a whole lot happier if they have each other.

 

spin1978
Registered User
(1/28/02 3:06:15 pm )

The following is just my personal opinion based on having read fanfic in a variety of different fandom communities for the past few years.

It seems that any close male relationship that appears in canon (whether it be books, TV, movies, comics, etc.) is automatic romantic slash fodder whether or not it's realistic. Since it seems I am not the only Highlander fan on these boards, I will offer my "case study" from there.

Methos, Death himself, perpetual beer drinker, five thousand year old Immortal. It's not a stretch to conceive of him having a same sex romantic relationship in all his millennia on this planet, especially considering that not every society in our planet's history has had the same semi-Puritanical attitude about such things. (O/T: Peter Wingfield would be a good choice for either Moony or Padfoot IMHO.)

Duncan MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod, Boy Scout, the Highlander, do gooder extraordinaire. He is portrayed in canon as a ladies' man bar none. I have difficulty seeing ol' Duncan finding himself a life partner amongst the male of the species.

Like Circex said, I definitely see that Remus and Sirius love each other as brothers and that bond is one which I think should be explored. If anything, I think that would make a great story because of the fact that such a relationship is not usually explored in fanfic. Actually, there's a plot bunny for someone, I'm sure. No romance, just the kind of friendship and connection that comes from having lived through what they've lived through and how they've dealt with the cards they've been dealt and how they finally, truly reconcile without the two of them getting too terribly angsty and sappy. Not to break the male code of silence too much, but not every traumatic experience automatically comes with tears, a complete nervous breakdown, a muffled cry for comfort or any of the other devices I've seen used in fics. Often as not, it's a cold mug of beer (perhaps warm Butterbeer for us) in the corner of a smoky bar where we talk and vent until 3 am, walking and smoking a cigarette with our best friend(s) all hours of the night, shooting hoops for hours (playing Quidditch in this case maybe) on end while we sweat out our frustrations, and most importantly, it takes time. It doesn't all happen in one emotionally charged evening, it's taken me weeks if not months to get entire stories from my friends before.

Just my perspective as a straight male who is not opposed to slash per se, just slash which seems to be a instant reaction of many writers out there. BTW, I'm still waiting for a good Angelina/Katie/Alicia fic with them in the showers after a long Quidditch match. :)

 

slick969
Registered User
(1/29/02 3:21:42 am )

First of all let me say that I sincerely hope the "eeew" and "gross" comments were not intended to be derogatory toward homosexuals. I would be utterly disgusted and disheartened if they were. If in fact JKR DID write those two characters to be lovers, not only would she utterly groundbreaking on yet another level, but it would be about damned time to have positive gay role models in childrens books -- even if one them IS a werewolf :) I think if Remus and Sirius were gay, it would TOTALLY ROCK!!

Having said that, here are my thoughts on the idea: Remus and Sirius are part of a brotherhood -- a very closely connected union. They are not unlike soldiers. If you ask a Marine or a police officer or firefighter how they feel about their fellow colleagues they will tell you that they LOVE them with all their heart and would do nearly anything to keep them out of harm's way. Ask the firefighters in NYC how much they loved their comrades. Are they all gay? Probably not. That's not to say that there aren't a few among the ranks -- as it should be.

Remus and Sirius are a tight unit, but I cannot see them as gay lovers -- the idea, IMHO, is preposterous. I'll admit to having almost zero "gay-dar," but I just don't see the evidence. The Harry Potter stories are not about lifestyles and sexuality -- they are about Harry Potter. Along those lines, JKR said that there will be more boy/girl stuff and I hardly think that's going to be about SEX. This isn't "Are You There God, It's Me Margaret." It'll probably more like a bit of snogging and crushes and stuff -- but I digress.

I see R/S as war buddies. They've seen the worst of what Voldemort has wrought on the wizarding world and have lived to tell about it -- they were betrayed by a friend and they lost two others (and probably countless others that we'll learn about later). I would submit that THAT alone would make two people -- weather they be male or female -- as close as two can be without being lovers.

I guess that's my rant for the night. I hope I didn't offend anyone.

 

bluemeanies42
Registered User
(1/30/02 2:39:29 pm )

Ok, I understand how people are confused by my comment that slashing the relationship degrades the quality, so I am going to attept to explain my reasoning here. I would just like to warn everyone that I frequently reason in ways that are rather wierd, so I always expect my ideas to be different.

The first thing we have to look at is what the STRAIGHT reading of POA implies (by straight I mean with nothing in between the lines). I think nobody would deny the following:

  1. Remus and Sirius had a very close relationship
  2. in this relationship there was a good deal of trust, but a trust that was believed to be broken
  3. after a breaking of said trust the two still have a close relationship (three breakings of trust: Whomping willow incident; Sirius suspecting Remus is the spy; Remus suspecting Sirius was the spy)
  4. Both men know a lot of personal secrets about eachother and have shared extremely emotional moments (discovery of lycanthropy, becoming Animagi etc.)
  5. Remus is clearly willing to forgive Sirius after a thorough explanation and resume the relationship almost immediately
  6. Both men are willing to kill or die for their friends.

Unfortunately we haven't seen much more interaction between the two men, so any further thoughts on what goes on between them is pure speculation. It is rather EASY to jump to the conclusion that they are gay based on that line of evidence. Societal expectations are that men are supposed to be distant, they aren't supposed to discuss dificult personal issues. The typical expected level of a relationship between two men is supposed to revolve around such things as cars, sports, computers, porn and alcohol. (Women, on the other hand are expected to be able to relate to eachother in a much more intimate matter, between discussions of what color lipstick they should wear of course) Now the obvious exception to this expected reserved relationship are gay men, as society expects them to behave differently than other men. In fact, quite frequently when a man acts in a way contrary to this expectation he is believed gay and often subjected to scorn and ridicule.

Looking at what we know about the relationship between Sirius and Remus, it doesn't fit how two men are expected to behave around eachother, so something has to be going on to explain this. The first explanation is that they are gay and romance is the element, or at least one of the elements, that has caused them to form a much closer relationship than is expected. The other explanation is that they have been through so much together that they had to have a closer relationship, that the unusually deep relationship between them comes from shared experiences and memories and that is all. Now maybe it is the optimist in me that I had thought was long dead, but I like to think that straight men can have that close a relationship with each other. To insist that they must be gay comes very close to saying that such a relationship CANNOT be forged between straight men, and the romance is the key element that makes it possible. After going through all this reasoning, the thought of Remus and Sirius as just friends makes the relationship even more special because of its unconventional depth.

I know that this has contained quite a few generalizations, and I know people will disagree with me, but this is just what I think when people want to slash these two characters and why I want them to not be involved. Then again, it might just be a matter of taste.

 

BBennett
Professor
(1/31/02 10:00:00 am )

To insist that they must be gay comes very close to saying that such a relationship CANNOT be forged between straight men, and the romance is the key element that makes it possible. After going through all this reasoning, the thought of Remus and Sirius as just friends makes the relationship even more special because of its unconventional depth.

bluemeanie (very cute handle, BTW ;) ), no one insisted they MUST be gay, just that canonical evidence is such that they COULD be gay. As far as I can see, stating as much in no way concludes that it's impossible for two straight men to have an intimate, non-sexual relationship.

 

Pensieve: ...The One True Way?

sugarquill
Headmistress
(12/5/01 7:30:22 am )

Remus and Sirius - the One True Way?

Okay, I promised to start this thread in the "pet peeves" thread below.

Several times I've seen comments on message boards that pairing Remus and Sirius together as a couple in fan fiction somehow "cheapens" their friendship or somehow gives the impression that men can't be very close friends without being romantically involved. I'd like to challenge that viewpoint, and open it up for discussion, since I know that there are many people around here who agree with me and many who don't.

Let me first start out by saying that I doubt that Remus and Sirius will run off and declare their love for each other in canon. Not because I think it isn't a possibility, but because we don't know how much time JKR is going to devote to Remus and Sirius as individuals, or how much we will learn about their past or future. Sirius's long lost girlfriend may return to him in Book V and speculation will end (although imaginations will not...)

I do, however, think that there is a possibility that they could be in love with each other. If you assume that viewpoint and re-read the scene in the Shrieking Shack, for example, it takes on a whole new meaning. (And my fellow professors can stop laughing at me right NOW). The chemistry and tension between those two in that scene is very, very strong. It's an emotional situation anyway, and it may be just the joy of reuniting with an old friend that is creating all of that chemistry, but the way that they both seem to instinctively know how the other will act and react seems to me to be more the action of a lover.

When I think of Remus and Sirius together, I think of two men who are each other's only link to their past. I think of two men with a lot of trouble who have seen a lot of hardship. They obviously care about each other, and they were obviously good friends (although not good enough friends to stop one from thinking the other was a traitor - that whole scenario could be interpreted as love-induced paranoia - Honeychurch and Lallybroch NEED TO FINISH "THE UNKNOWN WANT" RIGHT NOW!!!)

There is slash out there that is trashy, it is true. I'm not saying that all stories with Remus and Sirius paired together treat them as two wise men with a noble love. What is interesting is that it is possible to write a really good, in character, believable story with Remus and Sirius as the romantic couple. It's not necessary to change what we already know about them to make it plausible for them to be in love each other. Their personalities seem suited to fit together. Yes, they could just be really good friends, but then, shouldn't people be friends first with their romantic partner anyway? And there are equally as bad stories out there featuring heterosexual couples (not at the Sugar Quill, of course!)

Someone who I was talking to brought up a good point - if either Sirius or Remus were a girl, would that make a difference? Can you imagine the fan fic that would be out there if that were the case? Would Ron and Hermione getting together cheapen their friendship? Or even Harry and Hermione? Why do we pair anyone up? Why can't they all just be friends?

And the books and fan fiction writers do show platonic strong male friendships. Look at Harry and Ron. Look at James and Sirius - they were the ones who were meant to be the best friends - but look how well Remus and Sirius seem to understand and interact with each other after a twelve-year separation in the Shrieking Shack.

I'm not sure if I'm doing too good of a job of explaining my viewpoint here, and I hope others will step in.

Now, for some plugs ... If you want to read some stories that pair Remus and Sirius together in a realistic, and romantic way, I would recommend anything by Canis M., or what there is of "The Unknown Want" by Honeychurch and Lallybroch. Lone Astronomer's "Promise" is another good one. Or look at my story with Arabella, "After the End." Nope, everyone who reads it calm down, I'm not saying anything . But I think it is a good example. No one knows whether or not Remus and Sirius are together in our story. I'm not sure whether or not we've sorted it out - there are, after all, two of us. People are guessing, and all we're doing is trying to write Remus and Sirius as "in character" as we can. But you see, it's easy to imagine more to their relationship, isn't it?

This topic has also been brought up in other threads on this board, including Regarding Slash

:) Zsenya

 

Canis Minor
Registered User
(12/5/01 12:58:29 pm )

Since Zsenya has made a number of good points (and borrowed some of mine), I won't repeat them, but on this topic I feel obliged to put in my two yaps.

Regarding the notion of friendship being cheapened:

"Platonic, friendly, brotherly love is a far rarer type of relationship than lust. That is all that you add when you slash Sirius and Remus, lust. Lust is physical and fleeting, love is spiritual and lasting."
As quoted by Liz in the "Pet Peeves" thread, trepidatio -- is that correct? -- argues for platonic love vs. lust, and prefers the idea of a platonic friendship between Remus and Sirius rather than a physical relationship. My own argument, however, is not for love vs. lust, but romantic love vs. platonic. When I posit a romantic R/S relationship, I am not merely "adding lust" to a pristine friendship and thereby poisoning it: I am charting the development of romantic love -- including physical attraction -- that is profoundly based IN friendship.

There's no absolute proof in canon of either the platonic or the romantic interpretation, and (like others before me) I doubt JKR will ever provide it. If I were asked to explain my rationale for thinking that Remus and Sirius would work well as a couple, I'd say: they have complementary personalities, one of them being rather volatile, the other calm and steadying. They've both suffered immensely, and are both uniquely equipped to understand each other's problems and provide support. They have a long history together; we know they were friends at school. There's the werewolf issue: even on full moon nights, Remus will always be /safe/ with Sirius in a way that he can't be with anyone else, unless that person too becomes an Animagus for his sake. There's the fact (which I cannot overlook) that wolves and dogs are, well, compatible species. Sure, all three of the Marauder friends became Animagi, but look who turns into another canine. (If Padfoot were a cat, I would rethink this whole argument, I assure you!) There's the fact that Remus could have more or less assured Sirius' capture at any point during PoA, but never did. Explanation to Harry aside, I can't help put feel there was more behind that choice than fear of losing Dumbledore's esteem.

It is, of course, perfectly possible that all this equals nothing more and nothing less than extremely devoted friendship. I recognize that. I'd appreciate it if, in return, even non-shippers would be open-minded enough to recognize that the relationship /could/ be a romantic one.

I hope those readers who insist on a "just friends" version of Remus and Sirius do not mean to assert that romantic love can never or should never emerge from a friendship that was originally platonic. Such an assertion would negate any number of other ships, not to mention being quite contrary to many people's actual experience of falling in love. When I say that Remus and Sirius would be good together, I do not intend to belittle male friendship: I'm making a specific judgement about the relationship of two particular characters who happen to be men. That judgement is based on the same considerations I'd apply to a male/female pair of characters--or a female/female pair, for that matter.

For further clarification of my position, I refer you to my fics. ^^

- Canis M.

p.s. Let us not overlook the last (if not the most compelling) reason that they belong together: they're sexy as anything. Ah-oooooo!

 

Jedi Boadicea
Potions Master and Crow's Nest Lookout
(12/5/01 1:55:04 pm )

You knew I was going to have to jump in on this, didn't you, Z? :) (And what makes you think we were laughing at you? We would NEVER! Heheh.) This will probably end up being a very convoluted post, but I'll give it a try anyway.

I'll say first that I'm not a One True Way shipper, but in this case I can see both sides of the argument.

I disagree with the idea that Remus and Sirius being lovers 'cheapens' their friendship. Like Z, I believe that romantic relationships are best built on true friendship. I think that, if they were lovers, they would still have a deep friendship between them. In my opinion, a romantic relationship would only *change* their friendship, not 'cheapen' it.

That being said, I will now go on to say that I don't expect Remus and Sirius to declare their love for each other in canon, either. [:)] And in my interpretation of their characters, they *aren't* romantically involved. However, one of the things I find fascinating about this debate is the fact that their relationship *can* be interpreted in both ways, from the exact same canon 'evidence.' I believe it is possible to keep them in character with a romantic relationship, as well as a non-romantic one. Indeed, I think that to even keep them in character at all, there needs to be a clear understanding of how important they are to each other on a level completely removed from 'romantic possibilities.' They are, to each other, the only link to happier times - they are the only surviving members of a 'family' that meant everything to the both of them. Whether or not they were ever or will ever be 'romantically involved,' that special bond will always be there.

In the end, I think it really comes down to personal interpretation and preference, because we really have been given very little evidence (insofar as we've been able to SEE interaction between the two characters) in the books to completely justify either possibility. However, when I first read the scene in the Shrieking Shack, the actual image of 'embraced Black like a brother' hit me very strongly -- I could see the kind of embrace it would be, and to me it spoke of a fierce kind of friendship - but only friendship. I have seen and known friendships so close that two people can predict each other's actions, so I believe strongly that that kind of rapport can and does exist between 'just friends.' That is the chemistry *I* felt in how the rest of the scene in the shack played out. (But I won't deny that Z's passion on the issue is very persuasive - you should *see* her talking about it. [;)] ) That was simply my first impression and interpretation of their characters, and I've never been able to shake it.

But even though I'm not a One True Way shipper, I can still appreciate a good R/S slash story. All the stories Z mentioned are definitely excellent.

 

carton1
Registered User
(12/6/01 4:09:38 pm )

I will try not to go on for pages, but I never considered them more than dear friends, especially considering the "embrace like a brother." Infact when I first read it, and image of a women grabbed me. A wife/sister, I don't know. It was she that struck me. Who is she? Am I making her up.

I married a man and have a brother who had/have deep fraternal relationships. Much like Sirius, Remus, James, and Peter. In all these relationships there are histories of mischief, of sporting excellence, run-ins with the law, long lost loves, burials of friends and family. The male bond in these matters is deep and almost impenetrable.

Politics aside, we've had time on our hands, and no books to give us insight. Thus we conjecture out of need. However, there is much in canon that points to other possibitlies in my mind. Beginning with Chapter1 Book 1. When Dumbledore asks Hagrid about the bike the answer is YOUNG Sirius Black, lent it to me. This could easily imply that there is a Sirius Black, Sr. (I have a whole list on why I believe this). Later on in PofA when Harry first gets the map, he see's Dumbledore pacing in his office. Was Dumbledore reliving the events, sorting the possibilities. Dumbledore has never accused Sirius, he only says "I gave evidence to the ministry that he was the Potters Secret Keeper." That in no way implies he believed the facts presented. Later on in the Bar McGongal speaks of Sirius and James as the "ringleaders of the group" Sirius being Harry's Godfather, and Madam Rosmerta comparing them (Sirius/James) as brothers. Since we have Lily we never consider this relationship. When Remus arrives at the Shreaking Shack he has 13 years of information to unravel and feel in brief moments. If I had lost all of my friends in a 48 hour period, and lost the battle I had so deeply been involved, and was left alone to mourn the dead, sort the facts, and regroup on unfinished business...AND then oh joy!!! I wasn't alone, it hadn't all failed, we all or most were what we had been. A powerful loving, passionate, tearful embrace is beyond appropriate. There wasn't time to ask more questions, lives still hung in the balance, and work was to be done. The image of the girl that crossed my mind was a sister, why I believe that I am not sure. But in GoF when Sirius is explaining the dark days to Harry, Ron, and Hermione he says, "We were scared, scared for ourselves, for our family, for our friends." Sirius listed family above friends, he clearly criticized Crouch's familial obligation or lack thereof. The Weasley's can not be the only Wizarding "family", and most everyone else with single children. Couldn't there be a family member also left in the balance, someone Remus has watched over, a face that broke Sirius heart while he was in prison.

My final belief that this Sirius/Remus relationship will not come in canon as conjectured goes to a statement Rowling made on Larry King Live. She stated clearly her books were Moral, sighting that the story line was about good and evil, she would not get into teen-pregnancy, or illicit drug use. This was not the forum for those discussions. Thus preference will probably not be either.

I guess, not for political reasons, I believe the power of deep male relationships without romance. Every relationship does not involve a bed. Love is a plant which is nurtured by time, not romance. Many great relationships would die if intimacy were required. Let's not cheat ourselves out of a beautiful possibility.

 

julietvalcouer
Registered User
(2/4/02 3:47:43 pm )

Okay, first off, a disclaimer--I am KNOWN in other fandoms for being violently anti-slash, except where the slash is used as a basis for humor. (Anyone know of the Sith Academy and Obi-Wan/Maul? Now THAT'S funny.) I won't read fics labeled slash, and if it's covert slash I'll stop the minute I notice. Mostly because almost all the slash pairings fall into certain categories -- either simply NEVER gonna happen (Duncan MacLeod/Methos, Sirius/Snape) or borderline incestuous (Obi-Wan/Qui-Gon and Sirius/Remus. Well, okay there was that one fic that had OW and QG in a three-way with a female smuggler...ah, never mind. That one was a bit weird in many, many respects.) I have almost never seen slash, any slash, that I could buy as at all possible in canon, and I do like my fan fic to sorta fit. That's my personal bias.

Why Remus and Sirius in particular don't work as a couple, and I don't think they would work even if one were female, is I just don't think their personalities would work for a romantic relationship. Remus seems, to put it mildly, fragile. He can be strong when he has to be, but physically he's weak and I suspect he has guilt issues about being a werewolf. Sirius, on the other hand, is not entirely stable, and I don't think he ever will be. (I mentioned in another thread all the potential problems I think Sirius had in PoA and probably will have for a long time.) Remember, this is the one that even Dumbledore believed could end up a murderous psychopath, who behaved like one trying to get to Peter. I don't think that he and Remus could ever really do much good for each other romantically--and if for some reason the relationship went south, it could get ugly.

And the animal forms? Canine, yes, but have you seen the way the black dog is drawn on the back of the UK editions? Irish Wolfhounds are my favorite breed and I know one when I see it. They're bred to hunt and kill wolves. It makes sense--of all the Marauders' other forms, that one would have the best chance of physically restraining a wolf when necessary, as he does in PoA.

Also, I mentioned that mentally it falls into the incest category for me -- I can see James, Sirius, and Remus as brothers, really, (not literally!) in a sense -- James the eldest, the crown-prince/hero type, Sirius the roguish next-eldest with more bravado than sense, Remus the quiet one, who kept the other two in check. If James had lived I can even see the three ending up like the three old men in "The Last of the Summer Wine," roving about town and getting into whatever mischief they could manage.

I suppose that Remus/Sirius works for some people, but it doesn't for me. Remus I can see with a woman, a gentle, stablising personality. Sirius for some reason I have trouble seeing with anyone at all--at least anyone remotely normal for HP. (I really hope that's not a comment on his survival potential!)

Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis ad capul tuum saxum immane mittam.
- I have a catapult. Give me all the money or I will fling an enormous rock at your head.

 

Vulgarweed
Registered User
(3/7/02 7:41:59 pm )

Don't you think we all have to concede that this is largely a matter of taste? (another Obvious Statement of the Day, I suppose). I don't agree that portraying the relationship of Remus and Sirius as a romantic one necessarily cheapens or diminishes male friendship or implies that men can't love each other without a sexual component. We're talking about the *these two specific characters*, who are in no way supposed to be allegorical stand-ins for All Men. The only way any one single fanfic could imply this is if EVERY pair of close male friends in the story were getting it on, too--Ron and Harry, Crabbe and Goyle, Dumbledore and Moody, etc. (I _have_ seen fics like this, but they're usually parodies, intentional or otherwise).

Call me a Darn Good Way-er. It makes sense to me that they could be lovers, it makes sense that they might not be. No, I don't think it'll ever be announced that they are in canon. Does that really matter for fanfic purposes, though? A lot of the enjoyment of fanfic for me is the joy of exploring the big wild virtually limitless 'What if....?' _while still respecting the creative limitations of characterization_. Nobody's gonna do canon better than Rowling--the power of fanfiction is that it can do things that she WON'T do. Or hasn't done. Or just isn't gonna. Or doesn't have the space, or has her attention focused elsewhere. I can enjoy a story that has Remus and Sirius as passionate angsty lovers and then also the next one I might read right after which has them purely platonic and married to women. Neither of them is 'canon' so if they're both well-written, they both carry equal weight as artistic variations on the theme. That's how it works for me anyway.

 

Jedi Boadicea
Potions Master and Crow's Nest Lookout
(3/8/02 10:15:05 pm )

I know I've already put in my two cents on this topic, but today I was overcome by an urge to further discuss it in writing, and so here I am.

Before I get started, I should say that, in the end, I think the willingness, or unwillingness, to support R/S is purely a matter of reader preference. So anyway, here are the reasons for my preference....

My argument against R/S as a romantic pairing has very little to do with "evidence" about the characters themselves or their relationship to each other, because I would be the first to agree that there is not enough "evidence" to make a canonical conclusion either way. My argument is based entirely on the "feeling" I get, not just from Remus and Sirius as characters, but from the books and story as a whole.

Probably the most prominent and powerful theme in the books deals with the power of friendship and family. Ron and Hermione and the Weasleys and even Dumbledore become Harry's family. Moey once said that the books are really just about Harry finding the family he never had, and I agree. What we see embodied in the friendship between H/R/H is the bond and power of brotherood - and I don't mean that in the "masculine" sense, but in the sense of a 'brotherhood' as embodying unity, whether it's the brotherhood of common love, or the brotherhood of a fight against a common enemy. The books are about the power of unity, of the unconditional support given by those who love one another, those who know what it means to love. The brotherhood, the family, that Harry finds, is echoed in what we hear of the love that existed between MWPP. Even when you include Lily in the equation, the ultimate message is the same: the power of love to create a family. When Remus speaks of his schooldays, he speaks of his freinds as a unit, as a "brotherhood." The feeling of lives intertwined to create a whole that *is* Friendship and Love and Trust - this is what underlies every theme in the books, IMO. And it is seen very clearly in the parallel friendships of MWPP and H/R/H.

I'm not saying that a more "romantic" love would not just as easily fit into this overall 'theme' of the story, because it certainly can. I'm saying that even a "romantic" love does not automatically mean a "deeper" love, and in the case of the HP books I believe that any concept or example of "romantic" love is definitely secondary in significance to the ultimate importance of the love of a "family." Throughout the books, Harry stands upon the strength of the love and support of his friends - his newfound family. Whether he finds "true love" in the future or not has no impact on the support of that family, or on the "message." And it is thanks to the strength of character gained from the experience of learning what it means to trust a friend, an ally, a brother, that Harry becomes a *whole* person, able to stand alone while at the same time knowing he is *not* alone.

And that is exactly the kind of bond and experience that Remus describes in the Shrieking Shack. For the first time he was not alone. He had friends, and a *family*. Regardless of whether or not Remus had loving parents, it seems quite clear that MWPP filled a familial kind of role that had previously gone empty in Remus' life. And the truth is that I, personally, find the thought of a love that can become *family* more powerful than the concept of the more confused "romantic" love involved in an angsty love story. And if you want to talk about the pain of a lover's betrayal and use it as fuel to fire the scene in the Shack, I find it even more poignant to imagine a *brother's* betrayal - because while a "romantic" love can definitely cause one exquisite pain, the betrayal of family seems to me the deeper wound - because through good times or bad, your family will always be your family.

Look at the relationship between H/R/H. Everyone (at least here at SQ [;)] ) agrees that Harry would fail without the support of *both* Ron and Hermione. Neither can I iamgine Ron or Hermione coping without the support of *both* of their friends. They are a family, and regardless of what comes to pass between Ron and Hermione, they will always be a family beneath it all. And yet, despite all this love and trust, there is still the possibility of distrust and pain - look at the fights in PoA and GoF, in which all the members of the trio played their own parts. Imagine something horrific happening, something so seemingly damning that it could convince Harry that Ron had betrayed them, perhaps leading to Hermione's death - as Remus was "convinced" of Sirius' betrayal. And then, years later, the friends are reunited, and Harry discovers that Ron had *not* betrayed them.... I think the scene would have played out in a very similar fashion to that which we saw between Remus and Sirius, and the feeling I would have gotten from the encounter would have been the same - summed up again by these five words: "embraced like a brother." (I'm not denying that you can interpret that as a misconception from Harry's POV, because goodness knows that boy has had plenty of misconceptions about people. But no matter how you look at it, there is a lot of emotion put into that sentence, and for my part I just can't put the wording of it off as a misconception.)

No, I do not believe that a "romantic relationship" between Remus and Sirius would "diminish" their friendship, because, given what we *have* been told of their past, I don't think the power of their friendship is in question. But I do think that it would diminish the poignancy behind the theme of the books as I see it - that the love of a friend, and the love of a family, is strong enough to create light in any darkness. No matter how hormones and 'soul mates' may fly about the books (and they do, both of them), I will always feel that all of that is secondary to the importance of the "family." Harry has found his family. Remus and Sirius are all that is left of theirs. It is the power of brotherhood and unity between people that shines forth as the greatest magic in the books.

I'm not saying that one kind of love excludes the other. I'm just saying that, for *me*, in the end it is all about that "feeling." I think that R/S can make a really amazing romantic love story, but I will always find it more powerful to imagine all of that love and pain and endurance as stemming from the bond of two men lucky enough to find that most precious of all things: a true friend. And anyone who has been that lucky will know what I mean.

Hmmm.... then again, maybe, in the end, it all just comes down to the fact that I'm a total sucker for the "male-bonding" thing. Men forced to acknowledge that they really love their buddies is just the cutest. No offense meant to the guys at all. [;)] The male-bonding just tickles my fancy, as evidenced by all the times I've read Lord of the Rings and Guy Gavriel Kay's books. [:)] And now I end this, having rambled on more than enough and not actually said anything new.....

~Jedi B

p.s. I would like to add my voice the chorus of demands for the rest of The Unknown Want. [:)] After all, as others have said, R/S is still, despite my "feelings", the only HP slash pairing I can really see and really enjoy. So bring it on, ladies!!! And also, anyone looking for fantastic R/S slash, or just fantastic Remus and Sirius anything, should go read Canis M's stuff. :)

 

bittersweet
Registered User
(4/11/02 2:33:33 am )

One thing that I keep pondering about Sirius thinking Remus was the spy, is how clever manipulative people can make trouble where none was. If Peter wanted to keep anyone from realizing he was the spy, then it would behoove him to spread mistrust between his friends. He could blow up little disagreements into full blown conflict, or sow the seeds of fear between them.

Sirius alludes to this in GoF "Padfoot Returns" when Ron asks him to try and discribe how it was at the hight of Voldemorts power.

Another aspect, if one is an R/S shipper is to remeber that in the late 70's-early 80's it was a big deal to come out and admit to being gay. In many places it still is a big deal to come out, but back then it was much worse.

They may have only been coming to the truth of how they felt and be at that vulnerable time where they aren't sure the other is really comitted. It's not like het relationships. If Hermione dates Viktor then later dates Ron, big deal, she'll date a nice fellow and settle down, everyone expects that.

If Remus and Sirius fell madly in love and wanted to date, they either must admit to the world they are gay, or hide their relationship. I could see that choice of whether to be out or not as a huge place for conflict to build.

Imagine, Sirius wants to show off his lover to the world yell his devotion from the rooftops and be OUT! He seems to have a level of audacity that would make him the more likely to want that.

Remus would want to be quiet about it. Remus would go for the "confirmed batchelors" sharing a flat. Being a werewolf he'd not wish to draw attention to himself.

The wizarding community has some rather old fashioned notions and Remus is painfully aware of that. Sirius is more likely to want to push the envelope.

Peter could exploit that tension beween them.

my 2 knuts,

bittersweet

*coughcoughmorefearsomebizcoughcough*

 

sugarquill
Headmistress
(5/11/02 9:18:34 am )

Corgi,
I like the term "alt" very much.

:) Zsenya

 

soupytwist
Registered User
(5/11/02 10:44:31 pm )

I do too. I love alt, but slash isn't my thing. I want the characters as I know and love them, not just 'any-two-hot-guys'.

 

podger snowden
Registered User
(5/16/02 7:57:44 am )

On my first reading i assumed that they had that incredible brotherhood that you see in military units, willing to die for one another, the closeness that comes from sharing stress, the possibility of death and sacrifice. There is no greater love than that a man lays down his life for his brother.

Whenever it is Remembrance Sunday and they interview the old men (and young) who talk about the comradeship, and they begin to weep (I'm tearing up just thinking about it) then I'm reminded by how strong that bond is, and that it is a different kind of love. deeper than friendhsip, but not a romantic love.

When Sirius says 'we would have died for you' that comradeship is what I imagine.

He aint heavy he's my brother. (but unfortunately that always makes me think of that ghastly Hollies song).

but having said all of the above, they do seem right together as lovers, it's the same tenderness of parted lovers that makes the thought of them together seem to be the one true way. Maybe i just don't want to see them with new female characters, and there is no-one really suitable as yet?

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