Hermione and Remus had been dodging around their obvious mutual attraction for weeks prior 'the kiss'. So it wasn't exactly a big surprise after all the subtle gestures they had been sharing.

They were mostly simple things really.

A gentle brush of a hand, seemingly accidentally as one reaches for the potatoes at dinner.

Waiting on each other, to walk between classes, both forgetting that they are actually due in opposite directions.

There would always be a spot open between Remus and Sirius at the Gryffindor table, even when the Great Hall was exceptionally full and Hermione running absurdly late.

When Hermione would occasionally spend a late evening in the Gryffindor common room with Lily, Emily and the boys, she would always end up sleepily resting upon Remus' shoulder by the end of the night.

More than once she had fallen asleep on their lounge by the fire and had woken to find herself in her own bed without memory of walking up the stairs.

Their relationship was never spoken between them and, as far as she knew, never spoken openly of by the group at large but had somehow developed into a comfortable more-than-friendship.

Remus to Hermione was unlike any crush she had ever experienced. The more she thought about it the more her chest swelled.

She thought him more gorgeous, more charming and more caring and overall perfect than anyone she had ever met.

She knew that if she could look at herself abstractly she should laugh and scorn her swooning counterpart as one of the stupid love-obsessed girls like Lavender Brown that would keep her up at night with her declarations of true love for this weeks guy, but at the same time she didn't care because even just spending time with the young werewolf felt… right.

Right. There wasn't any other word to better describe it than right.

In contrast, only a few rooms away, Remus was feeling guilty.

He awoke the next morning and instead of feeling the rush of endorphins that Hermione's body exuded he felt ashamed and utterly disgusted at himself.

Fortunately for our heroine, it was not from the act of kissing Hermione per se but rather the time and circumstances that he had chosen for the act.

Unlike Hermione, Remus understood what it was, and he loathed himself for it.

From the first moment he met Hermione he was obsessed with her smell of fresh strawberries and cinnamon. It wasn't the overwhelming repugnant smell that emanated from most as a result of their mixed cosmetic soaps and lotions but a unique intoxicating scent that seemed to exude from her very skin itself.

His werewolf senses had always influenced his human form especially in with regards to scent. James and Sirius had once even had to change their aftershaves when Remus refused to keep less than 10 feet between them.

It also helped that their sickly aftershaves had mysteriously gone missing from their shared bathroom.

The girls however were often even worse.

Their shampoo combined with their scented moisturizers, soaps, hand creams, clothe freshening charms, hair spray, and their excessively applied perfumes more often than not meant Remus always went dateless to balls and Hogsmeade weekends, not being able to spend more than five minutes at a time in close proximity to one of the walking scent bombs.

Hermione had been the one and only exception.

And it scared Remus.

He liked her. He liked her a lot.

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