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Signs of the Werewolf (Remus/Tonks)

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KT_Tonguetied

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 3:02 pm
this is AU, obviously.



Prologue

“Hey Moony, how was Christmas?” James Potter asked casually as he stepped into his friend’s compartment on the Hogwarts Express. He looked at Moony again, only to see that he was asleep against the train window. “Some things never change.” He had fallen asleep on the train every year since James had known him. Moony always said trains were his weakness.

“N-no…I’m sorry…” he murmured in his sleep, his eyelids flickering as if he were dreaming. Two other boys stepped into the compartment just after he said this.

“Moony talking in his sleep again Prongs?” Sirius asked as he sat beside Moony. He looked a bit paler than usual, but otherwise there was no difference in his demeanor.

“Yeah, apologizing,” James said with a furrowed brow. The other boy sat beside him. “You get that broom for Christmas, Pete?”

“Nah, Mum made the same old excuses. ‘We’ve got no money Petey! How do you expect me to buy you a two hundred Galleon broom?’” Peter Pettigrew said in a shrill imitation of his mother’s voice. Moony began moaning in his sleep, his head moving fitfully. He was obviously having some sort of nightmare.

“Just a little girl…accident…” he said in an anguished voice. Sirius looked at him with fear in his eyes. Now all of the boys looked frightened. The full moon had been over Christmas, and they all had felt guilty about not being there for their friend.

“Remus, wake up,” Sirius said, putting a hand on Remus’s shoulder and shaking it lightly. With a shuddering gasp that suggested he had been doused in cold water, Remus Lupin awoke.

“What, what do you want?” he asked, leaning forward wearily and running a hand through his hair. His Auburn eyes were rimmed with red and slightly bloodshot.

“Wanted to see how your Christmas went,” Sirius said casually with a shrug. Remus scowled and looked out the window, looking anywhere but in Sirius’s eyes.

“It was…the worst holiday I have ever had in my life,” he muttered, his face falling into his hands. “My mum left us again.” The three other boys groaned sympathetically and patted Remus’s shoulder consolingly. “There’s worse than that…” Remus gulped and blinked furiously, “…I…I bit…I bit a little girl, you guys.” The alarm of the Marauders was intensified as their friend broke down into tears.

“You b*****d,” Sirius breathed out. Everyone looked at him, half expecting him to grin and shout ‘just kidding!’ but he didn’t. His face was as set as stone. “You bit my cousin, Dora.”

“Oh my god,” Remus moaned, putting his face back into his hands with shaking shoulders. “No, no, no, no, NO! I didn’t want this to happen…this is why I distance myself.”

“Distancing yourself from us wouldn’t have stopped you from biting my sweet innocent little cousin, you son of a b***h!” Sirius shouted.

“Padfoot, you’re out of order!” James said sharply.

“Don’t Padfoot me, James,” Sirius said loudly, standing up in his anger. James stood up as well, both boys a perfect match.

“What is with all the shouting?” a female voice said outside the corridor. Lily looked in the compartment, took in Remus’s anguished form and Sirius and James’s clenched fists, and her eyes widened. “What’s going on in here?”

“This son of a b***h werewolf bit my cousin!” Sirius said, pointing accusingly at Remus. Remus’s hand dropped to between his knees, but he didn’t raise his head.

“Sirius,” he said slowly, his voice shaking and hoarse, “you know…you know that I cannot control what I do while I am a…a…” he swallowed, “monster.”

“You’re a werewolf?” Lily asked with raised eyebrows. Remus finally looked up and stared evenly into her eyes.

“Yes,” he said with tears falling from his eyes, “I am a werewolf, Lily. And yes, I bit your cousin Sirius. I made sure to go down to the hospital and see her the moment I knew what had happened. I told her what she should expect, and I told her I was sorry, and she forgave me. And now, I am going to court in front of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures in three weeks. Is that enough for you Sirius?” Sirius and Remus stared at each other for a very long time, before the lesser finally sat down.

“How about we forget about fighting, but I can hold this over your head every time we argue?” he suggested in serious tones. Remus chuckled weakly with tears still evident in his eyes and nodded.

“What are you going to do about the trial?” Lily asked, forgetting about her hatred of James and sitting with them all. “Do you think Dumbledore could vouch for you?”

“Dumbledore’s done enough for me already,” Remus said shortly, “and the only person who could get me acquitted is the bite victim herself, and she’s still in hospital.”

“Do you think she would aid your defense?” James asked.

“I dunno, and I don’t want to ask her to,” Remus said with a small shake of his head.

“I could ask her, she’s got a mirror like mine and James’s,” Sirius offered helpfully. He pulled his out of his trunk quickly. “Nymphadora Tonks,” he said clearly, and a little girl’s tired face showed in the mirror’s surface.

“Sirius, I got a really cool scar!” she said excitedly. She held up her hand to show tooth-marks around the base of her thumb. “Mummy and Daddy say I can go home tomorrow, too!”

“That’s pretty cool Dorrie,” Sirius said with a grin. Remus looked down at the similar scar around his own thumb, where he had been bitten by Greyback.

I’m just like him,” he breathed out in a horrified voice. Lily linked her arm through his and looked at him questioningly.

“Who was that?” Dorrie asked, twisting her head to see around the compartment. “Remus, that you?” she asked with hope in her little voice. Sirius handed him the mirror.

“She wants to talk to you, mate,” Sirius said bracingly and Remus tried to push the mirror back at him. With a small sigh Remus took it and smiled in a half-hearted way.

“Hey Dorrie,” he said cheerfully.

“You look sad,” Dorrie said without hesitation. Sirius grinned; his cousin had always been very perceptive.

“I am sad,” Remus said matter-of-factly. “I still regret what I did, and I probably will for the rest of my life.”

“But…it was an accident, you didn’t do it on purpose,” Dorrie said confusedly. “It would be different if you weren’t sorry about it, but I’m okay, so you don’t have to be sad anymore!”

“Well…I need some help from you Dorrie,” Remus said slowly. “Because of what I did, I am going to go to court in front of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures in a few weeks.”

“You got in trouble? Are you gonna be grounded?” Dorrie asked worriedly.

“Much worse than being grounded, I’m afraid,” Remus said with a sad smile.

“But that’s not fair! You didn’t mean to do it! What if I told them?” Dorrie said quickly, worry evident in her eyes. “You’re so nice, why would anyone think you were bad?”

“I was actually hoping you would help me in trial, if you’re up to it by then,” Remus said shyly. Dorrie grinned broadly.

“Of course I w—!”

“Nymphadora, who are you talking to?” a woman asked as she entered the room.

“I’m talking to Remus, Mummy! I’m gonna help him in court!” Dorrie said cheerfully. Remus practically threw the mirror back at Sirius.

“Nymphadora, I don’t think that would be the best idea,” Andromeda said gently, reaching for the mirror. “He is the reason you are a werewolf, after all…” The surface of a table fast approached the mirror, and then it turned back into an ordinary mirror.

“I’m doomed,” Remus said morosely, dropping his face back into his hands.

“No, you aren’t!” Lily protested, pulling him back up straight. “I could speak in your defense, I’ve known you for seven years and you’ve never shown me even the slightest trace of unkindness!”

“Same here mate,” James said bracingly. “’I mean, sure you get a little irritable around your time of the month—” Peter sniggered and Sirius hit him, “—but that’s perfectly understandable!”

“I’ll go too,” Peter and Sirius said simultaneously.

“Thank you,” Remus said gratefully, smiling at his friends.

***

“The court has reached a verdict in the case of Remus John Lupin against the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures,” the judge droned. Remus looked up, shaking, but felt a bit better when his father put a comforting hand on his shoulder.

“What is your verdict?” John Lupin asked gravely.

“The court finds Remus Lupin…innocent,” the judge said finally. The Marauders (minus Remus) and Lily jumped up and cheered, taking turns hugging Remus tightly. Remus smiled broadly, and turned to the witness stand with a grin on his face. He walked over there and picked up the little five year old girl from the bench.

“Thank you Dorrie,” he said as he embraced her tightly. The little girl wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek.

“You’re welcome Remus,” she said with an equally large smile. Remus had thought she would change her mind about defending him after her first transformation, but that had only seemed to make her more determined to help him. She now understood his pain.

***

“Dorrie,” Remus breathed out slowly as he opened his eyes. That had been nearly eighteen years ago.

“Moony, are you awake?” Sirius asked as he came into the room. Remus bolted upright from where he had been lying on the floor and stared at him. “Oh, last night full moon then? Well, I’m afraid there’s no time to dawdle, Dumbledore’s calling together the Order again.”

“What, why?” Remus asked quickly, reaching for the pair of pants his old friend held out to him.

“He’s back,” Sirius said, his voice echoing throughout the empty room. Remus looked up sharply. Only one person being back could cause such melancholy in Sirius’s voice.

“Back?” Remus asked anyway. He had to be sure, after all.

“Yes,” Sirius said quietly. Remus dropped to sit on the battered mattress that was on the floor, and Sirius followed suit. They sat in silence for a few minutes, memories echoing through time and space, rushing toward them like the roar of a train.

“How…how d’you…?” Remus asked weakly, looking to Sirius for answers.

“Harry,” Sirius said simply. Remus nodded silently. “Come on, we should get going, the meeting’s at the Weasleys’ place.” With that, Remus pulled on a tattered white T-shirt and Apparated with Sirius to the Weasleys’.  
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 5:48 pm
Chapter 1

“I am glad to see so many of you got my message, my old friends,” Dumbledore said with a small smile. “I am afraid, however, that we are not gathered here for good news. Lord Voldemort—” several people flinched, “—has returned to the country, and will be active once more very soon.”

“How do you know, sir?” one woman in the front asked.

“We have a witness Miranda,” Dumbledore said gravely. “Harry Potter was there. Lord Voldemort used Harry’s blood to create the Resurrection Potion.” Several people gasped. “Now down to business. The last war took many of our numbers, far too many for my liking.” He gave Remus and Sirius a small nod of acknowledgement, remembering Lily and James.

“We need new recruits, as you all can see. I know that it is a terrible thing, but our best shot for new recruits would be in those just graduating or a few years older. The Death Eaters target the young, and if we want to at least slow their recruiting, we must target them as well.”

Sirius and Remus exchanged a quick glance, thinking of the same person.

“Sir,” Sirius said standing up, “my cousin Dora, she’s a werewolf, she could help…she’s twenty-one next week.” Remus looked at the floor sadly, guilt still tugging at his heartstrings from the memories he had just dreamt about. Immediately after Sirius spoke, others began suggesting co-workers or relatives.

“Excellent, thank you all,” Dumbledore said proudly. “Please do what you can to get them to the next meeting, but try not to reveal too much to them until we are sure they can be trusted. We will meet here again in one week.” Everyone stood and over half left, but the few who remained spoke amongst themselves. Remus and Sirius left immediately to find Dora. The sooner they found her, the sooner they could ask her to join. Therefore, Remus and Snuffles took off for her parents’ house.

“Mr. Lupin…to what do I owe the pleasure?” Andromeda asked with a tone that assumed the opposite of pleasure. She looked intensely at Snuffles, as though able to see his true form in the dog’s eyes.

“Andromeda…I would very much like to speak to your daughter,” Remus said evenly. Andromeda’s face hardened with dislike. It was only natural for a mother to despise the creature that caused their child so much pain.

“Well, I am afraid she is a bit indisposed at the moment,” Andromeda said coldly. “She had a rough night last night.” Remus felt his stomach drop painfully; so he had caused her to suffer.

“Mum, last night was fine, would you stop telling people that every month?” a young woman said as she stepped into the hall. Her hair was neon pink and her eyes the same Auburn as Remus’s, her arms currently crossed over her chest. Her eyes found Remus’s, and she grinned.

“Remus!” she cried happily, running the rest of the length of the hall and hugging him tightly. Remus smiled broadly and hugged her back with equal pressure.

“How are you Dorrie?” he asked softly as they pulled away from one another. Tonks pulled a face at the name.

“It’s Tonks now, Remus, please,” she said with a smile. “Here, would you like to come in—?” she looked at her mother suddenly. “Er…would you like to walk for a bit?” Her eyes clearly said ‘I would rather eat nails than have you in the same room as my mother.’

“Alright then, let’s walk,” Remus said with a laugh. Tonks stepped forward and closed the door behind her. Snuffles jumped up excitedly and licked her face on his hind legs.

“Whoa, who’s this cute little—” she looked down, “—boy, Remus?”

“He goes by a few names,” Remus said, hoping she would react the way he hoped, “usually Snuffles…or Padfoot.” He looked at her meaningfully. Her eyes widened slightly from memory.

“Are you saying…?” she asked slowly, looking at Snuffles. Remus merely put an arm around her and started walking down the street with her.

“Let me tell you a story,” he said with a slightly bitter voice, “about a man who betrayed his friends, named Peter Pettigrew.” Tonks listened very patiently throughout his tale. She got a bit teary-eyed as Remus told her of discovering Lily and James’s bodies in the dilapidated cottage. Remus got a bit anxious as he told her about finding out everything in the Shrieking Shack, but she took it in stride. When he told her about Sirius’s Animagus form, Tonks knelt down in front of Snuffles.

“Sirius, my dear cousin,” she breathed out slowly, running a hand through his shaggy hair, “oh how I’ve missed you.” She smiled broadly and tears came to her eyes. Snuffles jumped on her like a tackle and she fell over backwards, and he licked her face mercilessly. Remus couldn’t help but laugh along with her, her laugh was infectious.

“Can we go somewhere he doesn’t have to be a dog?” Tonks asked after a few minutes, getting up and kneeling before Sirius.

“Yes, follow me please,” Remus said, offering Tonks a hand to help her up. He pulled her hand, and she winced slightly, messaging her shoulder. “You alright?”

“Yeah…banged my shoulder last night I guess,” Tonks said with a small shrug, wincing slightly again. Remus felt the iron hand of guilt crush his stomach.

“Do you take the Wolfsbane Potion?” Remus asked curiously as they began walking again.

“When I can afford it, which is a bit rare. I could brew it myself but the ingredients are too rare to come by,” Tonks explained.

“What do you do for a job?” Remus asked. He didn’t mean to pry, but he was genuinely curious!

“Waitress in the Three Broomsticks, you?” Tonks countered back.

“Scrivenshaft’s,” Remus said immediately.

“Ah, how do we have time for normal lives? We’ve got such high-profile careers!” Tonks said in a glamorous sort of voice. Remus burst out laughing as they walked.

“I don’t think there is such thing as normal lives for us,” he said with a shake of the head.

“Here we are,” Remus said after ten more minutes of walking.

“Why Mr. Lupin, I do believe you’ve brought me to your house,” Tonks said as if they were on a date. Remus opened the door silently and allowed her to go in first. After they were all inside, he made sure that all the curtains were drawn and doors locked before letting Sirius become human again.

“Tonks,” he said simply, stepping forward and hugging her fiercely. She hugged him back as tightly as she could.

“Good to see you mate!” she said happily, nearly crushing the poor man. He in response reached up and ruffled her hair playfully.

“My, look at how tall you are!” Sirius said with a wide grin. He went on and on about how much she’d changed and grown up since he’d seen her last.

“What, did you expect me to be eight forever?” Tonks asked with a wide toothy grin.

“I’m afraid so,” Sirius said with a sad smile, “you grew up way too fast.”

“Couldn’t quite help it, I’m afraid,” Tonks said with a small half-shrug.

“Can I still call you Dorrie for a while?” Sirius joked, feigning a look of utter desperation.

“Ha-ha—no!” Tonks said with wide eyes. Sirius let out a bark of laughter and dropped back into a chair. Tonks followed suit, and Remus ventured into the tiny kitchen to make tea. He could hear Tonks telling Sirius about her schooldays, and Sirius would occasionally interrupt because one anecdote reminded him of a school prank the Marauders played. When Remus came back out Sirius was talking about when they had turned Snape’s hair green.

“I had nothing to do with it,” Remus interjected loudly as he came back into the sitting room with tea. Sirius was trying to say it was all Remus’s idea to do it. “I said we should charm his hair clean, not green.” Sirius gave him a quizzical look.

“Really? Well, that would explain all the glares you gave me afterwards,” he said with a shrug. Tonks laughed at them both from where she was curled up in an armchair. They continued to talk and joke long into the night, until Sirius and Remus were so wrapped up they didn’t notice that Tonks’s laughter had died away, and she no longer made loud exclamations about how she could totally see Snape with whatever they had done to him.

“So Tonks, has Snape ever—?” Sirius asked, but stopped abruptly with a smile on his face. Tonks was sitting sideways in the chair, her knees drawn to her chest. Her cold tea spilled onto her jeans when she fell asleep, a small smile frozen on her face. She’d fallen asleep laughing.

“Now isn’t that cute?” Sirius asked in a brotherly voice. He honestly did sound like an older brother looking down upon his baby sister. Remus laughed slightly and nodded.

“We should wake her or she’ll get a crick in her neck,” he said quietly, walking to the chair. “Tonks, love, you’ve gotta wake up.” Tonks stirred in her sleep but refused to move. “Tonks…” she still didn’t move. “Nymphadora?” There was a pillow in Remus’s face.

“M’name’s Tonks, bloody man,” she mumbled through semi-consciousness. Remus spat feathers from his worn out pillow at her.

“Fine Tonks,” Remus said evenly. “But I don’t want you Apparating home when you’re half-asleep, so I can set you up in the guest room, alright?” Tonks took in a deep sleepy breath and nodded with her eyes tight shut. “Do you need to owl your mother?”

“No,” Tonks said after she regained the power of speech, “I only go home for full moon because my mum makes me. It’s bloody annoying.” She allowed Remus to pull her out of the chair and lead her down the hall.

“She’s just looking out for you,” Remus reasoned with her, opening the door to the spare room. “There are some spare pajamas in the dresser if you want to change.”

“Is Sirius staying here?” Tonks asked blearily, crashing onto the bed and burying her face in her hands.

“Nah, I’m going to walk him home. He can’t Apparate because the Ministry puts a trace on all convicts,” Remus said. “Get some sleep; I’ll be back in a bit.” Tonks incoherently murmured a response before Remus left her there.

The moment Tonks heard the front door close, her eyes opened fully, a mischievous gleam visible even in the lack of light. She got up and snuck across the hall to Remus’s room, snapping on the lights. Without even a trace of guilt, she began rummaging through his things curiously. She had been fascinated by Remus Lupin ever since she was five years old after his trial. His eyes were always sad, even when he was laughing.

The room was smaller than the guest room; Remus had always been the martyr. Instead of a full bed, he had a single mattress lying on the floor. There were slight signs of repaired tears in the mattress’s fabric, and a few repaired gauge marks in the walls. Tonks touched the spots with her thin white fingers, feeling as if she knew the monster behind the man.

She performed a quick Finite Incantatum on the spots she could tell the spellwork was a bit shoddy, and stared at the claw marks on the wall. She looked down at her hand, at the scar that would never fade, and she refused to change with her powers. She sat on the edge of the mattress, still staring at the scar. She probably loved him, but was unsure of how to find out. She had never been in love before, and if she had been feeling the same way about him since she was five, how was she to know it was unusual or extraordinary?

Tonks shook her head lightly, and looked at the modest desk in the corner. There were pictures of the Marauders and a young Lily Potter scattered across it, and a battered black scrapbook lying open and blank beside it. Tonks looked at the front cover.

The Good old Days

Tonks smiled broadly. It was probably going to end up a gift for Harry, who she had both heard of from, well, everyone in the Wizarding world, and Sirius. She looked back at the pictures and saw scraps of parchment beside them, narrating what was going on in the pictures.

There was one particular picture that made Tonks giggle like a mad person. It showed Remus looking extremely pleased with himself, in the background were James and Sirius who were dressed as girls and looking extremely disgruntled. The parchment beside it had only one sentence on it that explained everything she or Harry would need to know about why Remus had done such a thing to his two best friends.

Sirius and James were calling full moon my ‘time of the month’ again.

Tonks placed the parchment back down on the table exactly where it had been before. She looked around once more, stole one of his shabby sweaters and pulled it over her head, and went back to the guest room, now genuinely tired.

When Remus got back a few minutes after Tonks went back to the guest room, he poked his head in her door to make sure she was alright. She was sound asleep, snoring softly in an endearing way. He went across the hall into his room and changed quickly, noticing that one of his sweaters was missing.

He walked over to the desk in the corner, and smelled Tonks’s shampoo around the area like a Seer could sense an aura. The parchment next to his favorite picture was in the right spot, but upside down. Remus couldn’t help but smile. He probably loved her, but wasn’t sure how to know. He had always felt a certain connection to her since she became a werewolf, but he had thought that it was only because he was the one that bit her. Perhaps, because he had avoided love all his life, he didn’t know how it felt enough to know it when he felt it.

Shaking his head at such foolish thoughts, Remus crawled under his ratty sheets for a restless night’s sleep. It was impossible for him to sleep properly when Tonks was right across the hall.

Remus was standing over Tonks, smiling softly. She was wearing his sweater, fast asleep, stretched out across the bed like a cat would be. Her scarred hand was on the pillow beside her head, facing upwards, the scars looking like a blooming flower. He still couldn’t fathom what had urged his beast form to bite her in the same spot Greyback had bitten him, at the same age Tonks had been.

Instead of waking her up, he went into the kitchen and made a few sloppy chocolate chip pancakes and bacon. Just as Remus had predicted, Tonks came out a few minutes later, after he had set up a fan to blow the food smells right into her room.

“Good morning sunshine, nice sweater,” Remus said with a teasing smile on his face as Tonks turned red.

“You always look so comfy, and now I know why,” Tonks said sheepishly, tugging off the sweater to give it back. She was wearing a too-small black camisole underneath it, showing a tiny shred of skin at her waist. It was just enough to taunt Remus.

“You keep it,” Remus said with a wave of dismissal, “it looks better on you. And besides, now it’s got your yucky girly cooties all over it.”

“Hey, I resent that!” Tonks said with a mock glare at him. It was ruined by her smiling wryly and sitting down, pulling the sweater back on and sufficiently ruffling her hair. Remus put a plate of pancakes and bacon in front of her before sitting down with his own plate. She stared at the food in awe before taking a huge bite.

“All is forgiven,” she said with a serious expression on her face. Remus burst out laughing at her joke.

“It is rumored that I make the best chocolate chip pancakes on this side of the English Channel,” Remus said with the same tone James would have used when talking about his Quidditch skills.

“I will totally confirm that rumor to anyone who asks,” Tonks said with her mouth full. Before Remus could do more than smile, Tonks’s watch beeped and she groaned. “I’ve got to go. It was really fun catching up and everything; we should do it more often.” Remus realized with a pang that they hadn’t even talked to Tonks about the Order. Why hadn’t Sirius even brought it to his attention?

“How about tomorrow night?” Remus asked, standing up with Tonks. She blushed slightly and looked at him curiously.

“Couldn’t get enough of me in one night?” she asked playfully. Remus smiled.

“Actually, there was something that Sirius and I were supposed to talk to you about, but it must have slipped our minds,” Remus said with a shrug. Tonks grinned at him.

“Alright, when did you have in mind? I know this really nice restaurant that’s really inexpensive near my apartment if you’d like,” she asked with a slight blush tinting her cheeks. She was practically asking him on a date, but wasn’t about to call it that. “Oh, and don’t worry about it being like a club or anything, it’s a little Italian restaurant, and it’s urgent we can get a private room.”

“Alright, what’s your address?” Remus asked politely, though he felt a bit awkward about this all as well. Tonks stepped forward, conjured a muggle pen with her wand, and wrote her address on Remus’s hand. Remus watched her write, concentration evident on her face as she pushed her bangs out of her eyes quickly. She bit her lip and mouthed the address to herself as she wrote.

“There you go, I’ve also got a phone number there in case you have to cancel, and I look forward to hearing from you,” she smiled broadly, gave him a quick goodbye kiss on the cheek, blushed, and left. Remus stared at the front door from which she left, feeling lonely in the empty house without her presence.  

KT_Tonguetied

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 5:54 pm
Chapter 2: My Personal favorite EVER!

“So you asked her on a date instead of asking her to join the Order?” Sirius asked casually, looking up from the Ministry blueprints Dumbledore had sent them the day previous.

“It’s not a date, she thought of the restaurant, not me!” Remus said quickly. Sirius shot him an unconvinced look.

“That doesn’t mean it isn’t a date, my friend,” he said, turning back to the papers. “I know my cousin, and I know that she’s been crazy over you since she met you when she was three.”

“But then she got bitten by me when she was five, which would damper a few feelings. And besides, she’s twenty-two now; she has probably outgrown any sort of feelings she had previously,” Remus pointed out.

“Both that, or they’ve matured with her and she’s more deeply in love with you than ever before,” Sirius countered. Remus stared at him with his eyebrows vanishing into his hair from Sirius’s understanding of women.

“Touché,” he said bluntly before turning his full attention to the blueprints and floor plans.

“Owned!” Sirius said with a small grin. Remus laughed at his old friend.

***


Tonks had been working from seven in the morning to nine at night with a small break at two. Rosmerta was always telling Tonks to take a longer break and shorter shifts, but Tonks wanted enough money to get out of her dingy apartment and into a house. Maybe get married and pop out a few kids along the way. Of course in order to do that, she would probably have to meet another werewolf, so there was no bias. This, of course, led her mind to Remus Lupin. He wasn’t biased, only extremely guilty for biting her when she was five.

She gave two old warlocks a round of Firewhiskeys before Rosmerta approached her with a stern look. Tonks looked at the two old men, hoping that they hadn’t been cut off for the night.

“Go home,” the matron lady said in a motherly voice, taking Tonks’s tray from her.

“Hey!” Tonks protested. It was only five.

“Go before I owl your mother,” Rosmerta said seriously. Tonks turned on her heel and Apparated right there. Upon landing on the floor, Tonks stumbled and crashed on her carefully placed couch. She had begun to place it there since she began Apparating home. She felt no need to get up, and lounged on the couch for a while with her eyes closed.

Nearly half an hour later, Tonks was jerked out of a light boredom-induced sleep by someone knocking on the door. Then she remembered her “date” with Remus. She jumped up, ran into her tiny bedroom, and yelled for Remus to come in.

“Nymphadora?” Remus asked, coming inside.

“Say that word again and I’ll bludgeon you,” Tonks shouted through the door, quickly yanking off her work clothes and putting on some nicer clean clothes. “I’ll be out in a minute, make yourself comfortable!” After pulling on a dark red tank top and a thin white shrug over it, she tried to pull on her jeans. She got one foot in alright, but started hopping around to get the other leg in, fell backwards into her bed, and hit the floor on the opposite side.

“You okay?” Remus asked with a small knock on the door.

“Fine!” Tonks shouted back, jumping up with her pants fully on. “I’ll only be another minute!” she ran into the bathroom and brushed her teeth hurriedly, checking for any signs of food or plaque. She hated both.

“Alright, I’m ready,” Tonks said, stepping out of her room and smiling at Remus. He looked her up and down slowly, taking her in. He looked quite nice himself. He was wearing a black t-shirt and black trousers. Tonks liked it when he wore t-shirts. They made him look more muscular than thin and ill.

“You look…lovely,” Remus said hoarsely. Tonks blushed slightly and looked at her shoes.

“Thanks so do you,” she said, then realized she called Remus lovely, “—handsome, I mean…. You look handsome.”

“Thank you Nym—ouch! Thank you Tonks,” Remus said after receiving a light blow to the head. “Er…shall we go then?”

“Oh, right! Yes let’s go,” Tonks said, grabbing her purse quickly on the way out the door. They walked in silence for a few moments.

“So where is this restaurant then?” Remus asked curiously as they continued walking for what felt like too far from the apartment.

“You’ll see,” Tonks said with a small smile tugging at the corners of her mouth. “Turn left up here.” She pointed forward and to the left, down a lane that held only houses, no buildings.

“Tonks, are you—?”

“Yes Remus! Just trust me, okay?”

“Alright then, I trust you.”

“Good. It’s right here, stop!” Tonks pulled Remus’s arm to a tiny red house, looking as excited as a small child with their first broomstick. “Welcome to Mio Nonna’s Casa,” Tonks said with a very well done Italian accent.

“What does that translate out to?” Remus asked as they got to the door. Tonks didn’t knock, she swung it open.

Nonna, io portar a ragazzo per cena!” Tonks shouted in Italian as a cheerful-looking old woman ran to the foyer to greet them. ((Grandmother, I brought a boy for dinner!))

Mio caro, lui è bello!” she said, pinching Tonks’s cheek. Tonks blushed and turned to Remus. ((My dear, he is handsome!))

Mio Nonna’s Casa means ‘my grandmother’s house,” she said to Remus. “It’s nice, it’s free, and she’ll give us privacy if we need it. It’s totally foolproof!”

Dora, che è suo chiamo?” Tonks’s grandmother asked. ((Dora, what is his name?))

“Remus Lupin, Nonna,” Tonks said. “Remus, this is my grandmother, you can just call her Nonna.” Remus smiled, only knowing one Italian word for sure.

“Ciao…?” he looked at Tonks, who nodded. “Ciao Nonna,” Remus said, holding out his hand to shake and getting a hug in return.

“Salve, caro ragazzo,” Nonna said with a pinch to Remus’s cheek as well.

“She said ‘hello, dear boy’,” Tonks whispered, fighting a grin. “Va bene Nonna, al condizionale noi avere di vino privato per favore?” ((Alright grandmother, could we have some privacy please?))

Bene, bene, di corso,” Nonna said with a nod of her head, leading Remus and Tonks to a small room in the back of the house. It had a single table with a chair on either side, two heaping plates of spaghetti at each place. ((Right, right, of course.))

“You see, sometimes if I want to go out but can’t afford it, I just call my grandmother and she’ll make me dinner, she’s really sweet but only speaks a few dirty words in English. The poor dear doesn’t even know they’re bad,” Tonks explained after giving her grandmother a kiss on the cheek in thanks. The old woman patted Tonks and Remus’s cheeks in response and left the room.

“So…you’re sure we won’t be overheard?” Remus asked, not trying to sound mean. But, for all they know, sweet little Nonna could be pressing her ear against the door that very moment.

“Remus, even if she did hear us, she wouldn’t understand a word of it, unless we were swearing like sailors,” Tonks said reassuringly. “So, what did you want to talk to me about the other night?” Remus took a small bite of spaghetti to think about how to begin. Instead he was completely distracted by how good the food was.

“Oh my god!” he said in astonishment. Tonks smiled knowingly.

“I know, you should have see me the first time I had Nonna’s food, I ate so much I had to get my stomach magically pumped,” Tonks said with a reminiscent grin on her face. “According to my dad she used to be an amazing chef in Italy, but then was getting too old to be on her own and moved here. I was sure to have my apartment nearby, both in case she needed help, and so I could get free near-gourmet food whenever I wanted.”

“Clever,” Remus said, “you speak Italian quite well.”

“Nonna taught me, actually. Well, Nonna would say stuff and do the actions that go with it, like touch your nose,” Tonks explained. “Toccare tuo naso.” She reached up and touched her nose. “Eventually, I just figured it out on my own, with my dad helping once in a while.”

“That sounds nice,” Remus said with a smile, enjoying how Tonks leaned her head on her hand as she spoke, completely comfortable with the atmosphere and her eating partner.

“So what did your parents do Remus?” Tonks asked curiously, all Order business forgotten in Remus’s mind.

“Well, my father is to this day a Healer, specializing in fertility in both humans and werewolves, he made sure of that,” Remus said with a smile that quickly dissipated. “And my mother…well, she was an expert abandoner, I suppose. One month, she wanted to be a wife and mother, the next she couldn’t handle the prejudices of having a werewolf for a son and ran. It went on and on until I was seventeen, then she no longer felt inclined to try to be a mother to me. I had survived to be an adult, what was she needed for?”

“Oh Remus, that’s horrible,” Tonks said comfortingly, reaching across the table and squeezing Remus’s hand supportively.

“Well I got used to it as the years went on,” Remus said with a shrug. “Besides, I think I’m better off to have grown up with my dad.”

“Much more manly?” Tonks asked, immediately back to her good sense of humor.

“Oh, yes, but he also showed me how to be in touch with my less rugged and manly side,” Remus said, purposely making his voice deeper. Tonks giggled for a full minute at that. “He said it was the only way I was going to get a woman, if I understood her.”

“So you understand?” Tonks asked, peering at Remus over a glass of water.

“I try, but to no avail,” Remus said. That sentence made him think of Lily and James, and how James used to claim he knew exactly what Lily was thinking, and Lily would just laugh at him. Lily and James. Tonks and Remus. A werewolf. A Metamorphmagus werewolf. The Order. Oh crap, the Order!

“Tonks, about what I needed to talk to you about,” Remus said hurriedly, not wanting to be distracted again.

“Oh, right, we keep getting off-track don’t we?” Tonks asked.

“Yes we do, but it really is urgent,” Remus said, sitting up a bit straighter. Tonks seemed to understand his urgency and became more attentive as well. “If I am correct, you heard about the death at the Triwizard Tournament?”

“Cedric Diggory? Yeah, that was a real shame,” Tonks said sympathetically.

“Have you heard any alternate stories as to how he died?” Remus asked in a low voice. Tonks looked at him with wide eyes.

“What, you mean some sort of conspiracy?” Tonks asked.

“Precisely, Tonks, brilliant,” Remus said. “The Ministry is trying to hush it all up because they don’t want mass panic and chaos. Tonks…Cedric’s death was no accident; it was murder.” Tonks actually gasped and clapped a hand to her mouth.

“I knew something was fishy about that story! Two boys come out of the maze, one clutching the other’s dead body sobbing, and he died in an accident? I don’t think so,” Tonks exclaimed. “So who did it?” Remus hesitated, not wanting to alarm Tonks.

“It was…it was Him, Tonks,” he said slowly. “The one everyone thought to be dead.”

“Pettigrew?” Tonks asked.

“Well…he was there as well, but…you may not remember, you were quite young when it happened—”

“What, you mean You-Know-Who?” Tonks interjected in a horrified whisper. The look Remus gave her was enough to confirm her fears. “Oh my god. It’s true then? Harry Potter isn’t making it up?”

“Of course he isn’t,” Remus said, instantly jumping to the boy’s defense. “Like I said before, the Ministry’s just trying to hush it up so no one panics.”

“Is the Ministry doing underground work then? Trying to get rid of You-Know-Who before anyone finds out he’s at large?” Tonks asked.

“No, they’re doing nothing. You see, not only do the majority of the Wizarding World deny Voldemort’s—” Tonks flinched, “—return, but Fudge is as well.”

“What!?” Tonks asked loudly, spilling a bit of her water on herself in surprise. “He can’t honestly be that daft!”

“Unfortunately, he is, and Voldemort’s numbers are growing every day,” Remus said seriously. “That’s why I need to talk to you. Have you ever heard of the Order of the Phoenix?”

“Bits and pieces, but not enough to really claim to know what it is,” Tonks answered honestly.

“Well, the Order is basically doing what you thought the Ministry was doing. We’re trying to alert the Wizarding Community to Voldemort’s return, but we need more members to do so,” Remus explained.

“What, you mean me?” Tonks asked. “What could I possibly have that the Order wants?”

“You’re a werewolf,” Remus said bluntly. “That is a great asset to have. You see, most of the werewolves have been promised a better position in the Wizarding World if they support Voldemort. People like you and me would be in charge of trying to get a few werewolves on Dumbledore’s side, and get them to recruit other werewolves, and so on.”

“So…I’m an asset?” Tonks asked, hope gleaming in her eyes. She had, possibly, never been deemed even slightly valuable by anyone but her parents.

“Yes Tonks, you are a great asset, Sirius recommended you immediately after the Order got back together,” Remus said reassuringly. “I can’t recruit feral werewolves on my own, and I’m the only werewolf in the Order as of yet. We need you, Tonks.” Remus and Tonks stared at eachother for a long while.

“Alright,” Tonks said with a nod, “I’ll do it. I’ll join the Order.”

“Excellent Tonks!” Remus said, beaming at her. “I’ll take you to the meeting later this week so Dumbledore can get an idea of who’s joining. Now, onto other things…”

The rest of their dinner was spent talking about previous jobs and friends and family. Remus couldn’t remember ever telling anyone so much about himself before in one night, besides the Marauders. After their plates were cleared and their glasses empty, Nonna peeked in the door timidly.

Entrare, la Nonna, sta bene,” Tonks said, motioning for her to come in. Nonna held up a finger, then brought in two bowls of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce on top, most likely upon Tonks’s request. ((Come in, grandmother, it’s alright.))

Fatemi sapere quando lei parte a caro prezzo, amerei salutare Remus,” Nonna said before leaving them in privacy again. ((Let me know when you're leaving dear, I'd like to say goodbye to Remus.))

“My, my, I think my grandmother has taken a liking to you Remus,” Tonks said with a smile, telling Remus what she said.

“Well it’s nice to know that she approves,” Remus said without thinking. Tonks froze with her spoon halfway to her mouth, staring at Remus. He stared right back, astounded that he had said such a thing.

“I didn’t even think about that,” Tonks said softly before smiling broadly and taking her bite.

Great, the cat’s out of the bag now, Remus thought, internally rolling his eyes at himself. But what did she mean by what she said? Does that mean she feels the same? Oh, do shut up Remus, you’re acting like a lust-ridden teenager.

“Ringraziarla…molto la Nonna…per un pasto bello…una buonanotte,” Remus said slowly and very badly, Tonks whispering in his ear what to say. ((Thank you very much grandmother for a lovely meal, goodnight.))

Lei è un ragazzo dolce! Il mio Dora è fortunato aver trovato qualcuno l'ama, finalmente!” Nonna said happily, pinching both of Remus’s cheeks and kissing each one. ((You are a sweet boy! My Dora is lucky to have found someone like you, at last!))

“Er…thank you?” Remus said uncertainly as Tonks turned bright red and started giggling like a madwoman.

Arrivederci la Nonna! I ringraziamenti ancora per la cena!” Tonks called over her shoulder as she and Remus walked down the drive. The sky was, by then, an inky black and dotted with silver stars. “It’s really a lovely night out, isn’t it?” she asked after a short while of walking, her arm loosely linked with Remus’s. ((Goodbye grandmother! Thanks again for dinner!))

“It really is,” Remus said, staring directly at Tonks instead of the sky. Tonks felt his gaze and glanced at him briefly before looking back up. She realized afterward the intensity of his gaze, and did a bit of a double-take.

“What, do I have something on my face?” Tonks asked, turning slightly pink and raising a hand to her cheek.

“No, no…you just look lovely, that’s all,” Remus muttered, turning red and looking away hurriedly.

“Oh…well…thank you,” Tonks said breathlessly, smiling shyly. “Well…this is me. Would you like to come up for some tea?” By the way Tonks was looking at him, it seemed that she had a bit more than tea on her mind.

“Well…alright then,” Remus said shyly, following Tonks up the stairs and to her modest flat. She had a faded, once bright red, worn out couch in the middle of the room facing the fireplace. There was a small vase above it that Remus assumed was full of Floo Powder. There was a comfortable-looking brown chair next to the stained coffee table.

“So how do you have your tea?” Tonks asked as she walked to the kitchen and rummaged through the cupboards.

“Usually just straight,” Remus said with a shrug, perusing her selection of books interestedly. “You read a lot of fairy tales, don’t you?” Tonks came to the sitting room that was adjoined to the kitchen, carrying two warm cups of tea and smiling.

“Yes, even before I became a werewolf I was fascinated by all the wolf stories,” she said, fingering one of the books’ faded spine gently. They both stood silently, sipping their tea comfortably, leaning against the bookshelf wearily. After they drained their cups they sat on the couch and Tonks lit the fire with her wand; it was a chilly night for summer.

They awkwardly sat a few inches away from eachother on the faded couch, looking around the room and wishing they hadn’t talked about everything they could think of while eating. Finally Remus got up the nerve to do something very unlike him and more like Sirius. Maybe Buckbeak had secretly bludgeoned Sirius, and Remus was channeling his spirit or something, but either way he pretended to yawn and put an arm around Tonks’s shoulders.

“You are so cute!” Tonks said after a few moments, scooting closer to Remus and laying her head on his shoulder.

“Thanks so are you,” Remus said with a goofy grin on his face. He put his arm around her a bit tighter and they just sat there, perfectly content to stay this way for a long time. They sat silently until the clock struck eleven.

“It’s late,” Tonks said with no hint of wanting the night to end. Instead she pulled a quilt off the back of the couch and laid it over them. They proceeded to fall asleep there, warm and perfectly comfortable in each other’s arms.  
PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 8:16 pm
Chapter 3

“Mum…what did it feel like when you fell in love with Dad?” Tonks asked quietly into the telephone receiver. She had awoken that morning alone in her bed, an apologetic note from Remus beside her. Sirius had sent his Patronus that told him he was needed at Headquarters.

“Nymphadora dear…I don’t really know what you mean,” Andromeda said uncertainly, hoping her daughter wasn’t about to tell her what she thought she would.

“I mean…I’ve never been in love before, so how do I know it when I feel it?” Tonks asked. She was currently huddled up on the bed, hugging a cushion to her chest and wearing Remus’s sweater.

“Nymphadora, are you talking about Remus Lupin?” Andromeda asked sharply. Her daughter’s lack of reply gave her all the answer she needed.

“I think so Mum…I dunno, I’m so confused,” Tonks said anguishedly. The sweater was an old Gryffindor sweater, when Remus had been young and more filled out. It was a large and stretched out turtleneck, and the colors had faded to tan and rusty maroon instead of yellow and red. Her hair was messy and dark blue, the same shade as the night sky the evening previous.

“Well I’m afraid I’m not going to be much help,” Andromeda said. “All I can say is…you just know, you know? Your father and I had been dating for about a year, and never said ‘I love you’ to one another. Then, I woke up beside him one morning, and just said it and knew it was true right away. It’s different for everyone dear, but all I can say is that if it’s meant to be, you’ll know.

“Are you sure?” Tonks asked like a small child, her voice shaking with suppressed tears.

“I’m sure darling,” Andromeda said comfortingly. Shortly after the two women hung up the phone. Tonks looked to the note that was still resting on her pillow. She remembered waking up that morning and feeling perfect euphoria at having fallen asleep beside Remus the night before. She still felt the hollow empty feeling in her gut that had begun to spread when she realized Remus was no longer with her.

“I won’t say it,” she said to the empty room. “I won’t say it until he’s here and knows…. Well…at least not aloud.” She bit her lip and looked at the sunlight filtering through the window. She didn’t work on Sundays. That annoyed her.

***


“What happened Sirius?” Remus asked slowly, trying to get the whole story for the umpteenth time that morning.

“Harry…fat…dementors…Ministry…” Sirius mumbled into his coffee mug, half asleep from staying up all night worrying. He looked up with red-rimmed exhausted eyes. “We have to get him out of there Remus; he’s dying with those Muggles.”

“I know Sirius, but first I need to know what happened,” Remus said slowly. Sirius took a deep breath.

“Harry and his fat cousin were attacked by dementors, and the Ministry’s set Harry’s court date to be tried by the Wizengamot,” Sirius said with a heavy sigh. Remus nearly fell out of his chair. “Dumbledore needs the new recruits two days earlier than he had hoped, so I really hope you talked to Tonks last night.”

“Oh yes, I spoke to her last night,” Remus said with a secretive smile. Sirius let out a low whistle.

“So is she going to be rushing in here in about five weeks, screeching about something turning blue?” Sirius asked coyly. Remus hit him across the back of the head.

“We did not partake in any sort of…activities…that you may have in mind, you pervert,” Remus said irritably. “Besides, I would never get her pregnant, I’m too much of a prude to do so remember?” Sirius let out a bark of laughter that was far too close to his Animagus form for comfort.

“Just like old times, mate! Perfect timing, I needed to be cheered up,” Sirius said with a shake of the head.

“Nice to know that my lack of a love life gives you entertainment Padfoot,” Remus said coolly.

“Hey, have you seen your love life? Have you met your love life? Well bad news mate, I have, and that poor thing is dying!” Sirius said (forgive the pun) seriously. “You need to make a move, and fast. If you don’t then someone’s going to come along and get to her first, whether it’s of her own will or not.”

“What do you mean?” Remus asked sharply.

“I mean…well, don’t you remember? You were the one who told me! Well anyway, you said the number of female werewolves is dropping drastically, and Fenrir Greyback is looking for a mate to leave an heir to his ‘empire,’” Sirius explained. Remus felt as if he’d been hit by a Beater’s bat. He had completely overlooked that.

“I didn’t even think about that,” he said quietly, feeling a thrill of fear run through him.

“That’s obvious,” Sirius snorted. “Look, just make sure she comes tomorrow night so she can get in on rescuing Harry if she wants.”

“Alright, I’ll talk to her later I suppose,” Remus said with a small shrug, still thinking about Greyback. Would Tonks be able to defend herself if Greyback came after her? Remus knew she was strong, she probably could have been and Auror if she wasn’t a werewolf, but that wasn’t the same. Aurors had three years of training to make them even stronger, wiser, perhaps more graceful.

“You should talk to her now, probably apologize for leaving at four in the morning,” Sirius said, practically reading Remus’s mind and seeing how he wanted to go back to Tonks’s flat.

“Do you need any help here with the plans?” Remus asked, knowing Sirius would start scheming ways to get Harry out of the Dursleys’ place.

“Nah, I’m sure you’ll enjoy yourself more at Tonks’s place anyway,” Sirius said with a suggestive grin. Remus rolled his eyes at Sirius’s antics before stepping onto the front step and Apparating.

Tonks had given up on waiting for Remus to come back, and made hot cocoa. It seemed a bit more appropriate, seeing as she was moping over Remus, a.k.a., the King of All Things Chocolaty. She had just sat at the table, her hair growing to her waist and falling in front of her eyes before she impatiently swept it back and made it short again. Her body did that sometimes, just change of its own accord. There was a knock and a hesitant “Nymphadora?” at the door.

Tonks, in her haste, knocked over her chair, the table, and her mug. She cried out in frustration (and slight pain as there was scalding chocolaty water on her leg) as her hair started growing rapidly again. Damn her hair and its mood swings!

“Ouch, dammit! Hey Remus, how’s it going?” Tonks asked the latter casually as she opened the door, trying not to lean on one leg as her hair spread nearly to her knees. “Crap, stupid hair, come in.” Remus looked around and gave a low whistle as Tonks limped inside.

“Did either a tornado or a very drunk Sirius come through here?” he asked as Tonks gave up on her powers and pinned her hair up.

“No, no…I’m just…me,” Tonks said lamely as her hair threatened to fall out of her small and sloppy clip. Small strands of midnight blue fell in front of her eyes as Remus gave a nod of understanding.

“Alright…here, let me help,” Remus said, waving his wand causally and allowing her things to right themselves. “It’s the least I can do after skipping out on you last night.”

“Ah, that,” Tonks said as she began to pour Remus a cup of cocoa and replace her spilled one. “Well, it’s nice of you to come back; you’re the first bloke to do so, but definitely not the first to sneak out in the middle of the night.”

“That’s horrible,” Remus said as she placed his mug in front of him and sat down across from him. Tonks shrugged with her eyes closed.

“That’s life, I suppose,” she said quietly, looking vacantly out the window.

“But you shouldn’t be treated that way by anyone,” Remus said, immediately coming to her defense.

“Remus, every girl in the world over twenty has experienced that, it’s part of life,” Tonks said, reaching across the table and squeezing his hand.

“I know,” Remus said, “I used to be one of those men if you’d believe it. You…you are just…you just don’t deserve that. You’re so kind, and…sweet, and…you’re just such a great person Tonks…” Remus felt himself turn slightly red in embarrassment at his stammering. Tonks smiled sweetly at him and squeezed his hand.

“You are so cute,” she said for the second time in two days. “And it’s nice to know that you’re so concerned for my well-being, but honestly Remus, I think I can take care of myself.”

“I know that too, but I’m just saying that…if you ever need…something more…” Tonks’s eyes widened slightly. He had meant to say ‘someone to talk to,’ or anything else along those lines, but the words came from his heart instead of his head. “I’ll be right here.” They both stared at eachother over their joined hands.

“Thank you,” Tonks said quietly. She still wasn’t ready to say the big statement aloud, but at least she now knew there was something there she could turn to.  

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2007 6:04 pm
“All there is left to say tonight before we commence the meeting is Welcome to Nymphadora Tonks, Hestia Jones, Matthew Turner, Alex Turner, Jessica Turner, Caroline Rigby and her daughter Eleanor, Bill Weasley, and Charlie Weasley,” Dumbledore said after two full hours of privately interviewing each new member under the influence of Veritaserum. Tonks had gone in looking slightly confident, came out looking as if she had been forced to sit her NEWTs without a single day of studying and had refused to talk to Remus about it. It wasn’t as if Dumbledore had been cruel in any way, he was just very protective of his closest friends who also happened to be Order Members.

Eleanor Rigby, being too young to join in the meeting but dragged along by her mother anyway, retreated upstairs with Fred and George, who were of the same age. Remus heard George say something in a very suggestive tone to the girl, who definitely responded accordingly.

“Now that everyone has been proven trustworthy and valuable to our cause, we must get on to the meeting. I am afraid time is scarce, but luckily we are discussing only one thing tonight—”

“Getting Harry out of the Dursleys’,” Sirius said with an eager grin on his face.

“Exactly Sirius,” Dumbledore said with a smile, “does anyone have any suggestions?”

“Well…what are these people—the Dursleys—like?” Tonks asked, surprising everyone in the room. Everyone had automatically assumed that the new members would just use tonight as an observation meeting.

“Complete and utter fools,” Sirius said after a moment’s pause.

“Completely full of themselves,” Remus added.

“Pompous!”

“Total selfish gits!”

“Not even worth a knut of my time!”

People were adding onto Sirius’s explanation from all sides, feeding off every story they had heard of the Dursleys.

“Do you have an idea Nymphadora?” Dumbledore inquired to a thoughtful-looking Tonks. The elderly Headmaster was the only person (besides Remus) she would ever allow to call her by her first name.

“I’m working on it. So these Dursleys…you mean they like to show off and such?” There were exclamations of confirmation around the table. “Alright…well, you know that drought that’s been going around the country, and everyone’s lawns are drying up?” There was more confirmation. “Well…what if we told the Dursleys through Muggle post that they had won…some sort of Best-Kept Lawn Competition? It would definitely make them feel important if their lawn’s drying up and even better if they ask about it and no one knows what they’re talking about.”

“You know…that’s a pretty good idea,” Remus said thoughtfully. Tonks raised an eyebrow slightly as if to ask “are you just saying that because we’re dating, or are you serious?”

“That sounds like an excellent idea Nymphadora,” Dumbledore said with a smile. “I trust you will be able to arrange the plan?”

“O-oh…I just thought that…we would hear other ideas too…” Tonks said, surprised that she had actually been asked to help.

“Does anyone else have an idea?” Dumbledore asked courteously, looking around the room. No one spoke, smiling broadly at the brilliant younger witch. “It looks like you’ve thought of what we’re going to do Nymphadora. You, Remus, and Sirius can work on the finer details then. Does anyone else have anything in need of discussion?” Again, no one spoke, making Tonks feel a bit in the spotlight for a moment. “Excellent; Remus, Nymphadora, Sirius, I trust you will start planning as soon as possible, but in the meantime I believe Molly has made dinner for all who wish to stay.”

Mostly everyone got up and left chatting merrily, but Tonks, Kingsley, Hestia, and most of the other new members stayed behind. Shortly after the kids came down again, George and Eleanor having the ‘I just had sex’ look all over them. Eleanor’s short blonde hair was sticking up all over the place. Tonks was just barely able to stifle a snigger.

“Alright, so who’s going to write the letter?” Sirius asked, leaning forward across the table towards Remus and Tonks.

“My mum taught me how to write in this really fancy loopy writing,” Tonks said, conjuring a piece of parchment and writing ‘My name is, unfortunately, Nymphadora Tonks.' It took a while, but was even loopier than Dumbledore’s writing, looking like a very formal statement even with such informal words.

“That looks really good Tonks,” Sirius said with a ruffle to his cousin’s hair. She stuck out her tongue and pushed his chest. “I am like a proud Mama!”

“Oh stop it; you’re acting like a kid!” Tonks squealed, though she was showing no signs of wanting the fun to stop. Sirius kept poking and tickling her until she fell off her chair. Remus leaned his forehead on his hand and fought a laugh. It would not bode well for him to laugh at his girlfriend’s clumsiness.

“Here, let me help you,” he said, offering a hand to Tonks. She took it with a grateful smile and allowed him to pull her back into her chair.

“Thank you for not making me fall out of my chair Remus, you may just get some action tonight for that,” Tonks said, giving Remus a quick light kiss. Sirius froze.

“Alright, I just thought you were being all chummy and affectionate…why didn’t I know you were dating?” he asked in a demanding voice. Tonks and Remus froze like deer in the headlights. They were so busted.

“Uh…” Tonks said cluelessly.

“Well you see…” Remus started lamely. The two looked at each other for help.

“Oh look, I think Molly needs help! Remus, let’s go help, okay?” Tonks said quickly, jumping up to run across the kitchen. Remus followed directly at her heels.

“You totally blew it!” he hissed through light laughter.

“I forgot, okay!?” Tonks squeaked back, taking plates from Molly and putting them on the table. She only broke two in her haste to avoid Sirius, and he still followed her like a hawk.

“Just admit you love him!”

“I’m busy being productive Sirius!” Tonks argued. Sirius took the plates from her with a mischievous grin. Tonks tried to grab for them but Sirius held them just out of her reach.

“Say it!” he taunted, raising himself to his toes to get maximum height.

“Sirius, you forget that I am a Metamorphmagus,” Tonks said, making her self grow about a foot and easily taking the plates from her cousin before shrinking to just the same height as him. “And I don’t know if I love him or not,” she whispered sadly into his ear when they were at eye-level, before continuing on to her tiny self. Sirius left her alone after that.

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Dursley,
We at the Great Britain Foliage Campaign (GBFC) would like to offer you a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Your home has been singled out for its outstandingly aristocratic lawn. Our researchers have been all through England, and have decided that you are a definite asset to the All England Best-Kept Lawn Competition.
We would dote on your attendance at the banquet this coming Sunday evening. Please take photographs of your lawn from every angle to ensure one hundred percent visibility and bring such photographs to the banquet. The banquet and prize-administering will be taking place at the Plaza Banquet Hall on 34th avenue at promptly 7:30 in the evening.
Sincerely,
Miranda Cosgrove, GBFC president


“How’s this look Remus?” Tonks asked the next morning. She had Apparated to his house after writing the letter. He was just getting ready to go to work at Scrivenshaft’s Remus looked over the letter, concentrating on her loopy fancy words.

“This is excellent Dora; I really think they’ll fall for it. Plus Harry should get a kick out of seeing his relatives taking photos of every possible angle of their yard. I don’t think they would trust him to do it properly,” Remus said thoughtfully.

“Great, I’ll take it to the Post Office before work. Could you write their address on the envelope please?” Tonks asked, handing him the neat white envelope. Remus smiled at her and quickly wrote the address on the front, also putting the stamp in the proper place but no return address. “Thanks, I probably would have pulled a Molly and covered the whole thing with stamps.” She grinned and gave him a quick kiss on the lips before walking out to the Post Office.

She was worried about the letter just sitting in that little compartment she was about to put it in, called a Drop Box. Why would she drop a letter, and how would it get to the destination? She shook her head at her own foolish antics, remembering what Arthur had told her.

Muggle methods may seem odd, but trust it, they work most of the time.

Tonks took a deep breath and dropped the letter into the little metal door, peering in after it for a moment. After she saw a hand reach out and grab the letter she was satisfied, and made her way towards the Leaky Cauldron.

When she reached an alley that was a nice shortcut to the pub, she felt a hand close tightly around her throat and force her against the wall. In her shock her hair turned its normal dark blackish brown and fell around her face. The smallest of hoarse screams came out of her mouth before a large dirty hand covered it that smelled lightly of blood.

“Shh, don’t scream pretty,” the dirty man said, smelling the base of her neck. Tonks began shaking violently against the brick wall. “I can smell your blood, your beautiful blood beneath that smooth white skin. Oh how I would love to get beneath that skin, taste that blood in my throat. But for now I am here on one condition. If you even try in the slightest to recruit the werewolves on Dumbledore’s side, I will taste your pretty flesh.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Tonks choked out shakily, her voice muffled beneath his hand.

“Oh but you do, Nymphadora Tonks, daughter of Andromeda Black and Theodore Tonks. I’ve watched you since you were five years old, seeing every transformation of that young skin. I’ve watched you grow…watched you dress…” A grin showed his filthy crooked teeth. “I saw you move into your flat, apartment A-6 in 23012 Maple Street….And I watched you agree to join the Order of the Phoenix from your grandmother’s window. You have been warned for the one and only time.

“Fear the name Fenrir Greyback, pretty, and you’ll die a smart woman.” He stepped back and disappeared into the shadows, leaving Tonks shaking like a leaf behind him and unable to breathe properly. She sank down to the ground, her knees banging into her chin painfully.

“Fenrir Greyback,” she whispered, her voice weak from her vocal chords nearly being crushed. She could feel her neck bruising from Greyback’s grip already. She sat in the dirt for several minutes, trying to steady her breathing and crying. Greyback had been watching her since she was five years old. What did he have in store for her? And what about Nonna? Greyback knew where she lived, she wasn’t safe.

Steeling herself, Tonks got up and walked slowly the rest of the way through the alley. Tom looked at her in concern when she entered the pub.

“Tonks, you alright?” he asked, coming around the counter with a clean towel in his hand. “You look like you’ve just been raped!”

“I’m fine Tom, I’ve got to get to work,” Tonks said, pushing his hand away and continuing through the pub and into Diagon Alley. Within moments of entering the busy street she went to Scrivenshaft’s instead of putting out her left hand for the Knight Bus. She quickly shrank her hair down to earlobe length as she entered looking frantically for her shabby-robed boyfriend. When she didn’t see him there, she dropped down into one of the reading chairs around the room with her head in her hands. A few people gave her odd looks as they shopped.

Sighing, Tonks walked out and summoned the Knight Bus. She ignored Stan and Ernie and just paid what was needed to get to the Three Broomsticks. She walked quickly to the back of the bus and remained quiet until she got to work. She knew Madam Rosmerta would make an almighty fuss about her bruised and slightly cut neck, mussed up hair, the large bump on the back of her head from the hard wall, and her dirty disheveled clothes. Sure enough, when she walked in…

“Tonks, what in the name of Merlin’s saggy G-string happened to you!?” Rosmerta asked loudly, taking the young woman’s thin shaking shoulders in her hands.

“I’m okay Rosy,” Tonks said quickly, “I really don’t want to talk about it right now.”

“Well at least let me fix those bruises on your neck,” Rosmerta said, taking out her wand. “Episkey!”

Something had gone wrong. Her throat started to burn and tightened, starting to cut off Tonks’s oxygen. She waved her hands at Rosmerta to show her to stop. After Rosmerta backed off, Tonks was unable to touch her neck it hurt so badly.

“Alright, well you shouldn’t be working now, not like this. Sorry the spell didn’t work,” Rosmerta said. Tonks nodded, unable to speak now from the pain. She Flooed home from the Three Broomsticks’ fireplace instead of Apparating, which would probably make her breathing condition worse.

Once in her flat, she very carefully peeled off her shirt, cringing even at the major shoulder movement, and pulled Remus’s sweater on instead. She pulled the collar up to cover the bruises on her neck. Maybe she had a potion that would help. She walked toward the window to go to the bathroom, and froze. What had Greyback said?

I saw you move into your flat, apartment A-6 in 23012 Maple Street….

She didn’t approach the window. She could have sworn she’d seen a flash of yellow eyes out in the bushes. She resolved herself to just moving back to the kitchen table and sitting down, shaking like a leaf. Why was she so scared of this man? Well, he could tear her limb from limb with those fingernails, that was for sure. He was the werewolf who had infected Remus. He had infected thousands of children. But perhaps it was just the way he had breathed deeply at the base of her neck, his tongue leaving his lips and touching her skin for the briefest of moments that truly terrified her.

She had no idea how long she sat in silence, but she nearly jumped out of her skin when someone knocked on the door. She felt a rush of panic; what if it was him? She wasn’t thinking clearly. Mentally berating herself, she opened the door and saw Remus and Snuffles there. She didn’t even smile like she normally would. She just stepped back and let them in.

“Rosmerta flooed me and said to come talk to you. What, not even a hello?” Remus asked with a small smile that quickly faded when Tonks motioned for Sirius not to transform into his human self. “She’s right, we should close that curtain.” Tonks looked at the same window she’d seen the eyes through. She shook her head quickly, and grabbed Remus’s arm when he went to close the curtains. She pulled him to the table and summoned a scrap of parchment and quill.

I’m being followed. She pushed it to Remus.

“Is that why you aren’t speaking?” Remus asked quickly, “can they hear you?” Tonks shook her head and pulled the collar of Remus’s sweater down to reveal the bruises. His eyes widened.

“Hurts to talk,” she whispered hoarsely, putting a hand on her sore throat.

“Why don’t you let me—” Remus offered, pulling out his wand. Tonks grabbed his hand again and shook her head.

“Tried already, made it worse,” she whispered again.

“Alright…who’s following you Tonks?” Remus asked gently. Tonks’s eyes went dark for a moment in thought. Then, almost afraid to say his name aloud, she took Remus’s hand and turned the palm upward so his scar was visible.

“Grey—?”

“Yes,” Tonks said before he could finish. Her eyes flickered to the window and saw a grotesque inhuman face looking back at her. She screamed, unable to control herself, and fell backwards. When she looked back at the window the face was gone.

“Tonks, are you alright, what was it?” Remus asked, kneeling down beside the now horrified Tonks. She just started sobbing, too shaken by the day’s events to take it anymore. Remus quickly wrapped his arms around her and placed her head on his shoulder.

“I can’t stay here anymore,” she said painfully into Remus’s neck. She felt as if her already squashed vocal chords were tearing from the effort.

“You can stay in Headquarters tonight, that would be safest because he’s probably keeping tabs on me too,” Remus said quickly. “I should probably stay there too.” Tonks allowed Remus to pull her to her feet and lead her out of the flat, quickly summoning a change of clothes from her wardrobe.

“Wait!” she said urgently, stopping Remus from leaving the door. “He’ll see us leave. Portkey?”

“Alright, that would be safest,” Remus said, turning a spoon into a Portkey. He placed it on the floor so Snuffles could put a paw on it just before it swept them away.  
PostPosted: Sun Oct 21, 2007 10:13 pm
Chapter 5

Everything in bold is from OOTP chapter The Advance Guard

“You say Miss Tonks is being stalked?” Dumbledore asked quietly, his half-moon spectacles flashing in the room’s dim light.

“Yes sir, she was assaulted around midday yesterday on her way to work by Greyback. All she told me is that she’s being followed, but I believe that it has been happening for quite a while now and she’s just too shaken to tell anyone,” Remus said quickly. “Greyback is most likely going to target her for a mate unless there is already a young feral.”

“I agree, the number of females has dropped in the past years. It seems the ferals have gone a bit soft in the past years,” Dumbledore said with a nod. “Where is she staying now?”

“At Headquarters, and I believe she is in the process of getting her grandmother to move in with Andromeda,” responded Remus, already missing the little red house where he had truly begun to fall for the colorful youth.

“Greyback is watching her as well, I suppose?”

“I personally believe he is keeping tabs on her entire family, and will be talking about getting her mother to stay at Headquarters for a while as well,” Remus said gravely.

“Well I will be talking to a few others about trying to keep an eye on Greyback, and keep you and Miss Tonks as safe as possible while staying with the ferals. That is, if Nymphadora still wants to be a part of the Order.”

“I’m not sure Albus; I’ll have to ask her.”

“Very well Remus, thank you for coming to me with this.”

Remus stood up and used Dumbledore’s Floo to get back to Headquarters. Molly Weasley had managed to whip up a healing potion for Tonks’s bruises, which she was trying when he came in. She dabbed at her neck gingerly, wincing with even the slightest touch.

“How’s it going?” he asked quietly, trying not to startle her. She jumped anyway and flinched drastically, holding her bruised neck. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to—are you alright?” It appeared that she wasn’t holding her neck because she was scared; the potion was only making the bruises worse. He led her over to the nearest chair as she tried to get her breathing back under control.

“That’s it, I give up, I’ll just have to let them heal the Muggle way,” she whispered painfully after a minute or two, sounding frustrated. “Besides, it gives me an excuse to wear your sweater a lot.”

“That’s always good,” Remus said with a smile. “So, I suppose you won’t be going to fetch Harry at the end of the week?”

“Are you kidding!? I’m not going to let a few bruises stop me from going on an actual mission! Of course I’m going!” Tonks whisper-shouted as if Remus were truly stupid. Remus smiled and shook his head at her.

“Just be careful alright?” he pleaded. Tonks smiled.

“You know I will Remus, really,” she said quietly. “You’re too sweet,” she rasped, giving him a quick kiss. They had only been getting closer for around a week, but it felt so right, as if some part of them both had already been joined for eighteen years.

The following week passed slowly, Moody insisting on going over the plan dozens upon dozens of times. Finally, on the day they would be setting off to fetch Harry, Tonks began to recite the plan when Moody was halfway through at hyper-speed. Moody was then convinced that they knew the plan well enough if even Tonks could memorize it. She had just begun to regain the power of speech and her bruises were fading. She was quite proud of herself.

“Alright now remember, if—”

“One of us gets killed, don’t break ranks,” everyone finished dully. Tonks snorted into her hand before mounting her broom. She and Remus exchanged a smirk behind Kingsley’s back.

“Okay then, let’s get on with it,” Moody grunted as they all rose into the air and shot towards Privet Drive. Tonks’s old skirt over thick purple tights that matched her hair billowed in the wind. Remus was forced to take his eyes off of her as they dove low into a cloud, coming out on the other side wet and cold.

“MOODY!” Tonks screeched after such an event. There were several cries of agreement.

“Calm yourselves down, we’re about to land!” Moody shouted back. Remus followed Hestia into a shallow dive and landed smoothly on the grass, unlike one other clumsy werewolf. He walked over, fighting a chuckle, and helped Tonks up before following everyone inside. She smiled in embarrassment at him and clutched his hand.

“So…how do we let him know we’re he—ah!” Tonks squeaked out as she fell and knocked over a plate.

“Well I guess that solves it,” Kingsley chuckled as all sounds of movement upstairs stopped. Moody, growing impatient with Harry’s hesitation, opened the door for him. Everyone fell silent and looked up the stairs expectantly. Sure enough a mop of messy black hair appeared through the dark doorway. Well it was more of a big black blur than a boy.

Lower your wand, boy, before you take someone’s eye out,” Moody growled.

Professor Moody?” Harry’s voice rang out uncertainly.

I don’t know so much about Professor, never got round to much teaching, did I? Get down here, we want to see you properly,” Moody said sharply. They just barely saw Harry’s wand dropping to his side and he didn’t move. Remus, seeming to sense Harry’s suspicions, decided now was the time to speak.

It’s alright, Harry. We’ve come to take you away.” Tonks could sense the boy’s happiness even from this distance.

P-Professor Lupin? Is that you?” Tonks suddenly realized that this would normally be a very happy and possibly tender moment if anyone could see one another.

Why are we all standing in the dark?” she blurted out. “Lumos.” Her wand ignited and flooded the hall with light. Harry was revealed blinking slightly in the bright light.

“Ooh, he looks just like I thought he would,” Tonks said excitedly. “Wotcher, Harry!”

Yeah, I see what you mean Remus,” Kingsley said. “He looks exactly like James.” Tonks was flooded with memories of the boldest Marauder.

Except the eyes,” Elphias said with a grin Harry was unable to see. “Lily’s eyes.”

Are you quite sure it’s him, Lupin?” Moody growled snappishly. “It’d be a nice lookout if we bring back some Death Eater impersonating him. We ought to ask him something only the real Potter would know. Unless anyone brought any Veritaserum?”

Harry, what form does your Patronus take?” Remus asked quietly.

“Ooh, can I guess?” Tonks blurted out, her hand shooting up. Remus gave her a funny look. “Right, sorry, not the point, please continue.” Kingsley chuckled quietly behind her.

“…a stag?” Harry said, confused by Tonks’s eagerness.

That’s him Mad-Eye,” Remus said with a broad grin. Tonks felt excitement bubble up in her stomach. She was suddenly remembering Sirius bringing her a picture of a little bald baby Harry. She had gone along to babysit once! She had to force her hands over her mouth to keep from squealing.

“Oh I’m beginning to remember James so much!” she said in a high-pitched whisper to Remus. He nudged her playfully as Harry began to make his way down the stairs. He hugged Remus for a moment and shook his hand tightly.

“How are you Harry?” Remus asked in a fatherly voice. Harry shrugged. Tonks nudged Remus to remind him she was there, but he didn’t notice.

You’re really lucky the Dursleys are out,” he said in a shaking voice. Tonks burst out laughing.

“Lucky, right! I was the one to lure them out! I sent a letter through Muggle post that said they’d been singled out for their extraordinary lawn,” she said with an ecstatic grin. Harry laughed as well.

“You told them to take pictures of their lawn from every possible angle?” he asked.

“Yeah I was hoping you’d get a kick out of it,” Tonks said cheerfully. She nudged Remus again to get him to introduce her.

“Oh, right! Harry, this is Nymphadora—”

“Remus I thought you of all people would remember not to call me that!” Tonks whined, hitting his arm.

Nymphadora Tonks, who prefers to be known by her surname only,” Remus finished smoothly.

“So would you if your loony mother named you Nymphadora,” Tonks grumbled. Remus grinned.

“Well yes, and Tonks is my…” Remus trailed off, searching for the right word. Harry looked quite confused, and Tonks looked up at him.

“You can call me your girlfriend, you know,” she said with a silly smile on her face. She loved how Harry’s face brightened considerably.

“You have a girlfriend, Professor,” he said teasingly. A single high-pitched giggle escaped Tonks’s lips, and Remus continued to introduce Order members. God she was an idiot. Oh great, now Moody was giving her that look he reserved especially for her. It was like a disgruntled fondness for her, so at least there was fondness.

“Come on, we haven’t got all night,” Tonks gently reminded Remus, putting a hand on his shoulder.

“Right, Harry do you have your things packed?” he asked quickly. Harry shook his head with a blush on his face.

“I’ll go do it now,” he muttered.

“Oh I’ll help!” Tonks said eagerly. She followed Harry up to his room. “Ooh, I love it in here.”

“You’re the only one,” Harry said with a roll of his eyes as he hastily began to throw things into his trunk. Tonks opened his wardrobe and eyed her violet hair critically.

“Does the purple make me look peaky? Well of course it does, everything makes me look peaky really. I mean I—”

“How long have you and Professor Lupin been dating?” Harry asked, forgetting about packing and sitting on the bed. Tonks’s hair turned pink at just the mention of Remus’s name, and she decided to keep it that way.

“Well…about two weeks, but it feels like it’s been forever,” she said, sitting on the floor in front of Harry.

“What do you do for a job?” Harry asked next, sounding a lot as if he were Remus’s son asking his new stepmother her intentions with his father.

“Well, I tried to be an Auror when I was seventeen but Scrimgeour wouldn’t let me in,” Tonks said with a shrug. “So now I’m a waitress at the Three Broomsticks. Hoo-rah.”

“Why didn’t Scrimgeour let you in?” Harry asked curiously.

“I’m a werewolf too Harry.”

“Oh…I see…that makes sense,” Harry said slowly. “So you work in the Three Broomsticks? Why haven’t I seen you there on Hogsmeade trips?”

“Well I usually look different every day. I’m a Metamorphmagus, you see, so I feel the need to change a lot,” Tonks explained. She looked around and saw all the things on the floor. Harry looked around as well. “We should really finish packing.”

“Yeah,” agreed Harry, reaching out to pick up a book.

“Don’t be silly, I’ll do it with magic,” Tonks dismissed. She waved her wand and his things flew into the trunk. She attempted half-heartedly to fold his socks with her wand as well, but they seemed reluctant to fold. “Ah, screw that it’s fine. Got your broom? Holy frick-in-a-bucket this is a nice broom!” She and Harry exchanged a small smile, Tonks hoping desperately that he liked her, before setting off downstairs.

“Ah, excellent,” Remus said as they came down, giving Tonks a grateful smile. She winked suggestively at him just to be funny. He blinked furiously and looked away, turning a bit red. Tonks smiled broadly, satisfied with the fact that she could make men uncomfortable.

On the fly back, the sky was an inky black dotted with silver stars and the milky moon. Tonks felt a tugging at her heartstrings, and her head instinctively turned upward to the sky. She felt a great pressure swelling in her chest as she gazed upon the half-moon, animal instinct ripping at her. She felt her hands leave the broom handle and raise upward until she was doing something similar to the King-of-the-World stance in that odd Muggle movie Titanic.

“Hello Tonks,” a raspy voice hissed in her ear. Tonks screamed in shock and fright, her body stiffening instinctively. She heard several other people around her shouting as what resembled a rough hand covered her mouth and dragged her back into darkness. She didn’t feel anything solid beneath her, including her broom. There was no longer anything touching her, and she was falling rapidly to the ground.

“DON’T BREAK RANKS! DID YOU HEAR ME LUPIN!? I SAID DO NOT BREAK RANKS IF SOMEONE GETS KILLED!” Moody screamed from above. Tonks felt fear rush through her; Moody was just going to let her die? Unexpectedly an arm wrapped around her waist and pulled her onto a broom.

“Tonks, are you alright?” Remus asked quickly as she wrapped her arms around his waist. She heard Harry shout the same thing moments later. Tonks was about to tell Remus what happened, but then rethought things for a moment. She looked up to her broom for a moment and didn’t see anyone on it. What if they thought she was mad? Would they throw her out of the Order for being loony, or just think she was incapable of going undercover because she may become prone to these outbursts?

“I’m f-fine…lost balance is all,” she whispered into Remus’s back.

“Well why weren’t you holding onto your broom in the first place?” Remus sounded angry now, and Tonks felt her lungs constrict.

“I dunno…felt funny…” Tonks muttered into his ear, “the moon…” She felt Remus tense in her arms at the mention of the moon. And yet now, when she sensed that she should, she couldn’t stop speaking. “It just felt like…like…something was…p-pulling at me…had to look up…my arms just…lifted up…I just don’t know what happened, Remus. I’m so sorry.” Remus kept quiet for a few minutes, taking up Tonks’s place in front of Harry.

“It’s alright, but perhaps you should stay away from brooms for a while, eh?” Remus said finally. They flew through a cloud and came out shivering and sputtering.

“He so did that on purpose,” Tonks said bitterly, eyeing Moody as Remus shrank her stationary broom and put it in his pocket with Harry’s trunk. Remus patted her arm gently as they flew on.

By the time they landed, everyone began asking Tonks for her account of what happened. She certainly got an earful from Moody.

“You bloody woman! Do you have any idea what you could have done!? You scared us out of our wits! We thought there was a Death Eater on your broom!” he nearly shouted himself hoarse. Tonks felt anger boil in her.

“I hit an air pocket and lost my balance, okay? I’m sorry!” Tonks shouted back at him, desperately fighting the urge to say ‘there was a Death Eater on my broom!’

“Your hands weren’t even on the broom when it happened, why weren’t you more careful!?” Moody shouted again.

“I was cold, wet, and stiff. I had to stretch my arms out, okay!?” Tonks said back, ignoring the sharp look Remus gave her. She reached inside Remus’s pocket, took out her broom and Harry’s trunk, and undid the shrinking charms on them. Angry tears formed in her eyes as she strode purposefully to the house.

“You get back here; I wasn’t done shouting at you yet!” Moody screamed at her back. Tonks gave him the finger behind her back just before going inside. She could still hear him screaming in rage as she closed the door on him. Remus brought Harry in shortly afterward. The boy looked unsure of whether to laugh or not. Mrs. Weasley came out a moment later to see what the fuss was about outside.

“What happened to Mad-Eye?” she asked worriedly before seeing Harry and giving him a huge hug. Harry looked on the verge of suffocation before he was released. “Come on Harry, I’ll show you where you’ll be staying.” Tonks handed Harry his trunk with a small smile. He gave her a questioning look before following Molly upstairs. Their absence left her and Remus alone in the hall.

“Are you sure you’re alright Nym—?”

“For Merlin’s sake, I’m fine,” Tonks snapped at him before going downstairs and sitting at the table. Ten minutes later Moody came down, his voice completely obliterated. He shot her a ‘you go to hell and you die!’ look before sitting down himself. The rest of Harry’s entourage followed minutes later, looking a bit more understanding than Moody.

“So how’d it go?” Sirius asked absently as he entered the room from the drawing room. Tonks shifted lightly in her seat as everyone looked her way. “What is everything okay? No one fell off their broom did they?” Again everyone looked at her. Shift. “Tonks what happened?” he asked accusingly. Tonks rolled her eyes. Shift.

“I had a teensy bit of an accident,” she mumbled quietly. Moody began to hoarsely scream at her again, but his voice was so far gone it was only a whisper.

“What happened, are you okay?” Sirius asked quickly.

“I’m fine,” said Tonks quickly.

“F-f-fi-i-ine!” Moody whisper-screamed from his place. Sirius looked at him with a shocked look on his face.

“What did you do to the poor old geezer Tonks?” he asked, Tonks being able to see that Sirius was thoroughly enjoying Moody’s absence of proper speech.

“I fell off my broom, and the grizzly old man just couldn’t handle that,” Tonks said innocently. Moody’s face was actually beginning to turn purple. They continued on in such a way until they were certain Moody would have an aneurism. At that point they quit teasing, and let the meeting begin.  

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 28, 2007 10:18 am
Chapter 6

After two weeks of non-stop cleaning to get Grimmauld Place even slightly livable, all thoughts of Tonks’s mistake left all minds but that of Tonks herself. She knew that voice belonged to Greyback, but didn’t know how it had gotten in her head.

Harry was waking up earlier than usual one morning from the sounds of people laughing downstairs. He crept down the staircase to see Tonks attempting to leave for work, but Remus kept intervening. She would take a step, Remus would grab her by the waist and kiss her, and she would remind him she had to leave but kiss back anyway.

“Remus I’ve got to go to work,” she murmured into his ear, her eyes shut as he kissed her neck. His yet unshaved whiskers tickled her neck and she squirmed away after the moment of pleasure. “Remus I’m serious, I am so going to get the sack if I don’t leave right now.”

“Find another job,” Remus said simply, moving toward her again with a husky lust-ridden voice that made the eavesdropping Harry squirm uncomfortably. This man was his ex-professor after all. Tonks gave a low laugh that came right from the deepest depths of her throat.

“I can’t I think I’m about to be promoted, I wouldn’t like to be fired now,” she lied with a husky laugh. Remus paused his kissing of her neck for a moment, Tonks’s back pressed against the wall with Remus’s hands on either side of her head. He then let out a sharp sigh.

“You torment me, woman,” he said in a poetic voice.

“I know and that is what I live for,” Tonks said, giving Remus a quick kiss on the lips before slipping out from beneath his arms and scurrying out the door before he could take hold of her again. Remus leaned against the wall for a moment as if trying to master himself before getting up again. What Harry happened to see in his…erm…Nether-regions…was incredibly disturbing. He let out a small cough of surprise, and Remus looked up, turning bright red.

“Uh…hello Harry. Excuse me, would you?” he said hurriedly, running up the stairs past Harry like a teenager. Harry felt his eyes widen when he heard the bathroom door shut and lock, knowing very well he would never look at his professor the same way.

“You poor child,” Sirius said from around the corner. Harry spun around to face his godfather. “You really shouldn’t have had to see that.”

“Yeah I know,” Harry grumbled, digging his hands into his pockets. He felt a little funny…down there…after watching that scene. It really didn’t help seeing a particular someone come down the stairs behind him.

“Good morning Harry, Sirius,” Hermione said, going around Harry to get to the kitchen. Her hair brushed against his arm and he caught a whiff of her shampoo, only making his situation worse.

“I have to go to the bathroom,” he said stiffly before even saying good morning to Hermione. Sirius burst out laughing and Hermione looked confused as he turned and left, about to kick Remus out of the bathroom.

“What’s so funny Sirius?” Hermione asked, feeling left out of some sort of joke.

“Man problems, little-lady, you wouldn’t be interested,” Sirius said with a pat to the girl’s shoulder. Hermione blinked at him as if she had a clue to what he was talking about, but didn’t really want to believe it.

“…right…well I’m going to make some breakfast,” Hermione said slowly before continuing into the kitchen.

***

“I’m fine Rosy, get off my back,” Tonks snapped the next evening as Rosmerta pestered her about falling off her broom. Tonks had made the mistake of telling her what had happened, thought nothing about Harry of course. She ‘had a flying accident while playing Quidditch with a cousin’.

“Well you shouldn’t have been flying right after being assaulted, with those bruises on your neck!” Rosmerta protested, following Tonks around the pub. Tonks turned around so abruptly Rosmerta ran into her, and tugged down the collar of her shirt.

“The bruises are gone Rosy, I’m perfectly fine,” she argued. She looked out the window at the purpling sky, and felt a small twinge on her heartstrings. Full moon was tonight. “Actually Rosy, I’m not feeling too well; I think I’ll be going home early tonight.”

“You do what you need to do dear,” Rosmerta said as if she knew why Tonks needed to leave. The young woman’s thoughts instantly went to her mother, and felt anger boil in her. If her mother told Rosmerta about her condition she was so dead.

“Rosy, did my mother, by any chance, tell you something about me shortly after you hired me?” she asked innocently now, already planning her mother’s funeral.

“Aye, she did, but why would you be interested in that? It’s not like I care if you have herpes and have to go to St. Mungo’s every month for treatment,” Rosmerta said with a shrug.

“I have WHAT!?” Tonks yelped. “Oh, that’s it; my mother is going to die!” Clenching her fists, she walked to the hat stand she’d hung her cloak on and swung it violently around her shoulders. The moment she had stepped outside, she Apparated home, hoping for something of Nonna’s food seeing as she’d moved in with her mother.

“Mum, Nonna, you home?” she called bitterly as she walked in the front door, not smelling anything delicious and Italian.

“Nonna, why are you calling Nonna?” Andromeda asked as she entered the hall and took her daughter’s cloak off for her.

“She hasn’t moved in yet?” Tonks asked worriedly.

“No, nobody has even mentioned the idea of her moving in,” Andromeda said confusedly. “Someone spoke to me about moving, but not of Nonna moving here.”

“Nonna was supposed to do that,” Tonks said resignedly. Why hadn’t Nonna mentioned anything? “Well, whatever, I’d like to eat something before moonrise.” She went into the kitchen and grabbed some leftover casserole out of the fridge her father had insisted on buying so many years ago. As she was dishing some onto a plate, a horrible fact hit her. She hadn’t taken the Wolfsbane Potion! She would have to leave the house and go into the woods like always if she forgot. She pushed her chair back and made for the door.

“Nymphadora, where are you going?” her mother asked worriedly. Moonrise was coming fast now.

“I have to go to the woods, I was too distracted this month to brew the potion,” Tonks said hurriedly as she ran out the door and down the front steps. Darkness began to settle in as she reached the trees behind the house. She made sure to get deep inside the trees before looking for a good place to remove her clothes and transform. She settled on a small mossy area she had transformed in before. There was a large oak tree with its roots leaving the ground and a large boulder beside it. The moss was so thick she could lay there like it was a bed. Just as her shirt came open someone ploughed into her.

“Oh my—Remus?”

“Tonks?”

“What are you doing here?” they both asked each other in unison.

“I didn’t take Wolfsbane,” they both said again.

“You too?”

“Yeah!”

“Damn!”

After a moment Tonks became slightly aware of the fact that her shirt was hanging open and her bra exposed. It seemed that Remus had been noticing that too. Both were breathing heavily from running, and perhaps something more. The moon pulled them together with Remus’s bite to her at age five; maybe this was supposed to happen now.

“Remus,” Tonks whispered hoarsely, breaking the silence between them. The moon lured them into its trap, filling them both with a fierce animal need when in the presence of one of the opposite sex. “I need you.” Remus didn’t say a word but certainly didn’t object. He placed a hand on the base of her neck and pulled her towards him gently. He met his lips eagerly, feeling as if tonight was her last night and she would spend it the way she wanted dammit. They ripped off each other’s clothes hungrily, needing each other, moonlight shining on their bare skin.

As they enjoyed a good naked snog with the rising moon driving them crazy, the animals in them took over where the humans left off, continuing all throughout the night until sunrise.

When Tonks awoke, in a slight daze of aching bones, she felt funny. She felt as if she had lost her virginity all over again, but how could that be? Picking a leaf out of her now brownish-black hair as she sat up, she turned over to see—

“Holy hell,” she breathed out slowly. Remus was lying beside her, just as naked as she. She quickly inspected herself for injuries. None. Again, how could that be? Two vicious, un-Wolfsbane-ified werewolves meet in the woods on full moon, and don’t maul each other to death? How was that possible?

Perhaps they were too preoccupied with other, more sexual, things, Tonks thought to herself with a small shudder. She hastily stood and stooped over to retrieve her discarded (and miraculously un-shredded) clothes, and heard Remus stirring awake.

“Who’s there?” he asked hoarsely, keeping his eyes tight shut to shield his eyes from sunlight. Tonks froze, not wanting him to see her naked suddenly. They had messed up so badly last night, they weren’t anywhere near that stage in their relationship yet even though she loved him. Remus seemed unwilling to wake just yet, and allowed himself to be lulled back to sleep. Tonks let out a small sigh of relief, noticing that Remus wasn’t injured at all either, and pulled on her clothes hurriedly.

After her clothing was intact and the leaves were out of her hair (which she was keeping this way out of shock and panic), she walked home. Her mother was waiting for her, making her breakfast and preparing to heal any wounds her daughter may have inflicted upon herself.

“Oh Nymphadora, are you alright? The way you rushed out last night, I was afraid you wouldn’t make it in time,” Andromeda said, stepping forward with a cloth in her hand, ready to wipe away any blood.

“I’m fine Mum, I didn’t harm myself. I was…preoccupied…I suppose,” Tonks said with a small shrug. She sat at the table with her head in her hands wearily, needing food and sleep. If she had doubted shagging all night in werewolf form before, it was definite that she had now by the level of her exhaustion. Having sex all night, and only having sex all night, could make someone this tired.

“Here you look drained, you should eat something,” Andromeda said as if reading her daughter’s mind and placing an overloaded plate of food in front of her. She resembled Molly Weasley in her own homely ways.

“Thanks Mum,” Tonks said, forgetting all about her desire to murder her mother once she took a bite. “You’re on your way to becoming the Nonna of breakfast foods Mum.” Andromeda glowed, knowing a good compliment from her daughter when she heard one.

“Thank you dear. Feel free to kip in your room if you don’t want to Apparate,” she said warmly before leaving the kitchen. Tonks stared pensively out the window the moment the door fell shut. She could have sworn she’d heard or read something about werewolf mating laws before, but that wasn’t even the least of her worries.

Werewolves can’t use protection.

What if Tonks got knocked up? That would not bode well for either of them. Her mother would literally murder poor Remus, and Tonks would have to be pregnant! She was too young to be pregnant! Great, now she was hyperventilating. Her hands were shaking and she dropped her fork, her appetite now quite suddenly diminished. Her eyes ached of tiredness, and she hauled her body up the stairs to her old room.

If there was one thing she loved about her childhood, it was her room. The walls started out fire-engine red, but on her fourteenth birthday (after numerous amounts of begging on her part) her mother charmed them to change colors with her mood. On pissy days they were the same red, on sad days they were blue, and on hormonally confused days each wall was a different color. Today one wall was orange, nervous, another wall was yellow, happy, another was green, either envious or horny (Tonks was leaning toward the latter), and the last one was a most depressing blue.

Tonks allowed her cloak to fall to the floor, suddenly drained of all energy, and dropped into the comforts of her soft, warm bed. Mmm…Remus was also soft and warm; she remembered that from their unofficial, yet somehow implied, date. She also remembered that from last night. Great, now she was thinking about that again. It’s not like he was soft in a fleshy way, he had great muscles. He was just…a soft person, if that made any sense. Merlin, she really did love him didn’t she?

With a great sigh, Tonks was just beginning to fall asleep when an owl tapped on her window in a most annoying fashion. The irritated young witch opened the window with a lazy flick of her wand, and the bird landed gracefully on her bedside table. It was so white it reminded Tonks of a bridal gown. She took the official-looking note from the owl’s leg and it flew off immediately. Blinking confusedly at what looked like some sort of certificate, she turned on her lamp for a better visual. There was a note attached to the certificate as well.

Dear Mrs. Lupin,

We in the Werewolf Registration Centre of the Department for the Control and Regulation of Magical Creatures would like to congratulate you on your marriage to one Remus John Lupin. Your Werewolf Registry Numbers have been changed. You both now have the same, all new, register number to show that you are married. If you and your new husband would kindly make an appointment at the Ministry, we will be more than happy to change both of your IDs to fit your marriage. Also, please note that a marriage certificate is attached to this letter. Your marriage to Remus John Lupin is binding and eternal, and cannot be broken.

We look forward to seeing you and hope you are well,
Demitri Von Grey
Head of Werewolf Registration Centre, DCRMC, MoM


Tonks gasped in horror. What the hell had they done?  
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 6:34 pm
Chapter 7


Your marriage to Remus John Lupin is binding and eternal, and cannot be broken.

Tonks certainly wasn’t tired anymore. She and Remus were married? That was the werewolf law she had been too careless to remember! Transformed werewolves, even under the influence of Wolfsbane, acted instinctively when meeting on full moon. Acting instinctively happened to mean shagging. If two werewolves shagged, or known among dignified conversations as mating, it made them legally married in the eyes of the wizarding world.

She was in such deep s**t, and verbally expressed that. “s**t, s**t, s**t, s**t!” She jumped out of the bed and pulled her cloak back on, about to run out to the woods and find Remus to see if he knew how to fix this. But of course, she couldn’t undo sex; she could only pretend it didn’t happen. That’s what she would have to do.

But what if Remus got a copy of the letter and certificate? “s**t!” She ran out the front door and past her mother’s anti-Apparition wards before Apparating directly to Remus’s house. She made a very lucky guess and found a spare key under the worn out welcome mat, and let herself inside. She didn’t pay attention to the warm and cozy surroundings for long, intent on getting rid of any evidence of their union for now. If they were meant to be married, they would do it the human way dammit, and after knowing each other much longer than they had.

“Aha!” she whispered victoriously, seeing the same official envelope and certificate she had gotten. She snatched them up and tried to rip them in half, but there was some sort of protection and preserving spell on them and wouldn’t rip.

Probably in case he wanted to have it as a keepsake, Tonks thought with as she blanched. She tucked them into her pocket instead, deciding to figure out how to dispose of them later. She glanced out the window upon hearing a popping noise. s**t! Remus woke up and came home! She looked around fervently to find some sort of exit. The back door was either in another room or nonexistent. s**t! The door was opening! Thinking quickly Tonks straightened up from where she had been trying to see through a keyhole for the back door and smiled at the weary and confused Remus.

“Hey, you’re back,” she said breathlessly, hoping he didn’t see her bent over. He gave a nervous and tired smile as he draped his cloak over a chair.

Tonks felt a rush move though her body when he made eye-contact. That was odd, yet pleasing at the same time. It felt as if there were some sort of connection between them. Somehow, even in all of her previous panic, she felt calm looking into his eyes. He was a buoy in the water that she clung to. He leveled her mood into perfect serenity. It felt to her as if they had been married for ages instead of a few short hours.

“I am, but I am also curious as to why you’re here and not resting at home with your mother—never mind, I think I already know,” Remus said as he walked across the room to her. She waited for a kiss, but it never came.

“I just wanted to make sure you…were alright,” Tonks lied quickly, the slightest hint of a blush touching her cheeks before she morphed it away. “You weren’t around when I woke up, so I worried.” An understanding look crossed his face.

“I worried too, seeing how close we were before we transformed,” Remus said, giving Tonks a small hug, glad she was alright.

It felt odd for him to say ‘we transformed’ instead of keeping it singular. Somehow this morning, he felt more connected to this bubbly young woman than he had the days before. Seeing her there in his house looked right, more than right, it looked natural and perfect. She fit right along in the small cozy house, because she herself had a small and cozy nature about her. Something was different about her that he couldn’t place immediately, but decided that he liked it quite a bit even though it slightly unnerved him.

“You look thoughtful,” Tonks said quietly. She instinctively stepped forward and, on the very tips of her toes, kissed the corners of his eyes as if it would take the wrinkles away. Remus started in surprise; he and Tonks had never been so intimate besides when the moon drove the lust into their hearts the night before.

“I am feeling particularly thoughtful this morning,” Remus said with a sad sigh. “Nymphadora—Tonks,” he corrected quickly, but Tonks found that she didn’t mind much anymore. Did it have to do with her new surname? “Tonks…I could have killed you last night…” Tonks felt like she knew where this was going and jumped in.

“I’m a werewolf, I could have killed you too,” she murmured as she began to plant small kisses along his jaw to distract him.

“But as wolves, I am the male and the female would not fight,” Remus pointed out.

“How do you know werewolves don’t act differently than ordinary wolves?” Tonks asked innocently. “Maybe werewolves have evolved to believe in women’s rights like humans, seeing as they are part human.”

“Nymphadora…” Remus said in a warning voice, pulling back from her kisses to show he was completely serious. “We have to make sure this doesn’t happen again, something bad could come of this.”

“Like a reverse-Serendipity?” Tonks asked, trying to bring back some humor into the seriousness of the conversation.

“Tonks,” Remus said firmly. Tonks nearly recoiled. “If it happens again—”

“It’s not like I did it intentionally, Remus!” Tonks interjected. She was now beginning to grow upset with this. He was acting like she watched him go into the woods and followed!

“I know, I realize that, but I notice that either your mother has phenomenal healing skills or neither of us were injured last night. You just seem to be the kind of person who would try this again to avoid the same ritual of solitary transformations,” Remus explained. He was sort of right, Tonks was curious about that bit. She usually got quite banged up, luckily not so badly she had terrible scarring like Remus, but it was enough to get her down and out for a day or two. If her wolf was lovemaking all night, how could she get hurt?

“Tonks, please just promise me you won’t try anything in the future?” Remus asked, turning Tonks’s thoughtful chin towards him. Tonks rolled her eyes very slightly.

“Alright, I promise. Now can I have my boyfriend back please?” Tonks asked in a whiny voice. A smile finally broke through Remus’s tired and serious face. “Want me to make you breakfast?”

“Will it kill me if I ingest it?” Remus asked with a cheeky grin. Tonks looked around for something to throw at him, but everything in the kitchen was slightly dangerous so she spared him.

“Now it might because of your cheek,” she responded after a few moments’ silence.

“Delayed reaction much?” Remus asked. This time Tonks picked up a knife and began to chase him through the kitchen. “Alright, alright, I surrender, please make me breakfast!” Tonks put the knife back with a sweet smile.

“Well, only because you asked,” she said cheerily. “You either go have a lie-down or take a shower, while I make you breakfast.” She gave him a small push in the right direction, and he laughed.

“Thank you Tonks,” he said as he went down the hall to the bathroom.

“No problem sweet-pea,” Tonks called in a very housewife-like voice. The moment the bathroom door closed and the hot water began running, Tonks walked out the front door and Apparated back to her mother’s house. As she ran up to her room she pulled the certificate and note out of her pocket and hid them in a warded drawer with her set. She would deal with those later.

As an afterthought, Tonks also pulled out a piece of parchment and wrote a quick letter requesting a physical to St. Mungo’s. Apparently werewolves could tell if they were pregnant in as little as a day after conception, but only as the wolf. Luckily wizarding medicine helped with that problem.

With a wicked smile Tonks crept down into the kitchen and took her untouched breakfast, along with the pan of eggs and bacon her mother kept on stand-by in case there was need for more food. She put a Heating Charm on the pan, dumped the plate’s contents into it, and Apparated back to Remus’s house. Once in the house, she banged around with a few of his pots and pans to make it sound like she was being productive.

When Remus came out of the shower Tonks had set up two of his plates (knowing he wouldn’t have the same flowery ones as her mother) with the food in the pan that luckily looked exactly like one of his. He looked utterly shocked, to say the least.

“You didn’t burn the house down,” he said in awe. Tonks crossed her arms and put on a fake scowl.

“Do you really have such little faith in me?” she asked with a pout. Remus made a deep gentlemanly bow before sitting and taking a bite. Tonks sat in a satisfactory silence as he chewed thoughtfully. She had actually fooled him!

“This is your mother’s isn’t it?”

Damn it.

“Yes,” Tonks muttered in shame, hanging her head with a smile on her face. Remus merely chuckled appreciatively at her.

“Just as long as you didn’t steal it,” he said before taking another bite. Tonks flushed again. “Nymphadora!”

“Well technically she made it for me; she never said I had to eat it all by my lonesome!” Tonks argued. Before Remus could argue an owl flew through the window. Remus took the letter from the bird and read the addressee.

“It’s addressed to you, but in my father’s handwriting, any particular reason for this?” Remus asked, handing over the envelope. Tonks took it in surprise, not knowing why she would be getting a letter from Remus’s father. “It had a seal from St. Mungo’s on it.”

“Oh, right, you’re dad’s a Healer! I’d completely forgotten,” Tonks said as she opened the envelope and quickly read the letter. “I have a physical tomorrow at half two.”

“Are you feeling alright?” Remus asked in concern. Tonks looked up from where she had been staring pensively at the letter.

“Oh yes I’m fine, just a routine check-up,” Tonks said comfortingly. Remus didn’t look entirely convinced, but dismissed the subject anyway. Tonks tried to ignore the letter, but kept glancing at it to make sure she got the date and time right. “Wait, what’s the date today?”

“It’s August fourth,” Remus said.

“Oh, then I have the appointment today, cool,” Tonks commented. “I never get an appointment so soon after I request one.”

“You requested it?”

“Yes Remus, I do it every year!” Tonks lied, knowing Remus had every right to worry. She should probably tell him there was a fifty percent chance he was going to be a father, but was too scared that the percentage was probably higher than fifty. She checked her watch for the time, only ten. She had four hours of agony to kill before she would know for sure.

She and Remus finished their breakfasts in a comfortable, almost husband-and-wife sort of silence. Remus took care of the dishes as Tonks left to return the pan to her mother’s house and run a few errands before her Healer’s appointment. She went to Diagon Alley and bought the ingredients for a double-dose of Wolfsbane, hoping to surprise Remus.

When she got to her house she heard her mother rummaging around upstairs. Tonks immediately felt uncomfortable, remembering the one time Tonks had tried to ward a baggie in her room and her mother had found it the same day. The sounds were so similar Tonks began to have flashbacks.

“Mum, get out of my room!” she yelled just as she had not so long ago, running frantically up the stairs. She looked in the doorway to see her poor mother looking about to faint as she read the marriage certificate. “Mum, listen, I—”

“You eloped!?” her mother squawked. “You eloped and I wasn’t even invited!?”

“Mum it’s not like that; it was a total mistake—”

“Dora did he threaten you? Did he blackmail you? If he even hinted at hurting you if you didn’t marry him I will—”

“Mum LISTEN!” Tonks shouted. She snatched the certificate away from her mother and put them back in the drawer. “How did you get in there? I put up a ward around it.”

“It’s been that way since you were thirteen. I have a stronger ward on your room, so if you place a ward on something I am immediately alerted and your ward is destroyed,” Andromeda said without the slightest trace of guilt.

“So that’s how you found the baggie…which wasn’t mine!” Tonks said quickly. “Well anyway here’s what happened…” Tonks retold Remus colliding into her a few minutes before they transformed, their uncontrollable lust from the moon, snogging naked, and waking up feeling as if some part of her that she never really payed attention to had just had sex, how that annoying owl had showed up with the marriage certificate, sneaking into Remus’s house (but left out stealing his copies), talking to him about what had happened the night before, and stealing her mother’s food to feed her hungry boyfriend.

“…so now I’m going to St. Mungo’s at half 2 today for a pregnancy screening,” Tonks finished with a hefty sigh. Her mother was staring blankly at the orange walls, listening raptly.

“Is that where you were, telling Remus you’re married now?” Andromeda asked.

“I was going to…but then panicked and decided it would be best left alone for now,” Tonks said, wringing her hands in her lap from where she sat on the bed. Her mother put a hand on her shoulder comfortingly.

“You have to tell him Nymphadora,” she said quietly, “especially if you do turn out to be pregnant. He has a right to know.”

“I know Mum…what time is it?” Tonks asked, looking around for her nonexistent clock.

“It’s two, you should probably head to the hospital,” Andromeda said, getting up from where she had been seated on the floor. Tonks nodded numbly, wondering what John Lupin was like. Was he quiet and reserved like his son, or was Remus only that way because of his condition? Speaking of Remus…

“Mum?” Tonks asked at the bedroom door. Her mother looked away from the wall. “Please don’t tell Remus, okay? I will tell him, just when I’m ready to.”

“I understand dear,” Andromeda said. “You love the man and want to protect him; it’s only second nature to you.” Tonks smiled and hugged her mother tightly before making her leave.

Once at the hospital she realized she had no idea where she was going, never paying attention to where John Lupin worked. She approached the welcome witch at the front counter.

“Excuse me, where could I find Healer John Lupin?” she asked politely to the irritated witch. She looked up from Witch Weekly magazine with a pink bubble of gum protruding from her mouth. She popped it slowly, obviously enjoying the sight of Tonks’s nervous fidgeting.

“Here, you may need this,” the witch said with a smirk, handing Tonks a large and complicated map of the hospital. She tapped it smartly with her wand and two stars appeared on the map. There was a green one that said ‘You are here,’ and a yellow one that said ‘Your Destination.’ It was a good thing Tonks was twenty minutes early.

“Alright…erm…thanks, I guess,” Tonks muttered, turning the map in all directions to try to find the right angle to go at. When the map was sufficiently upside-down and Tonks was thoroughly confused, she set off for what appeared to be the basement. It was much cleaner than she usually depicted basements, but still had the creepy atmosphere of an unfinished basement nonetheless.

“Er…hello?” Tonks called out timidly. “I’m looking for…” she checked the map, “the Lupin Ward, and I think I’m lost…. Could somebody—ahh!” Tonks screamed when someone touched her shoulder. A kind-looking older man of around his mid-sixties was smiling at her. He did look remarkably familiar, and Tonks found herself relaxing around this fatherly figure.

“You’re in the right place dear, don’t worry,” he said. “Why don’t I take you the rest of the way?” Tonks smiled gratefully, tucked the map into her pocket, and followed the Healer through a pair of battered double doors. “Welcome to the Lupin Ward.” Tonks felt free to look around.

It didn’t look like it was built to really be a ward for medical purposes, but had transitioned into one very easily. There were a few patients inside, looking as if they’d come in off the streets. There was a mother with three small children sitting shyly beside her on a bed, all of them looking much worse for wear. They eyed Tonks as she came in as if she were an outsider and didn’t belong.

“I’ve never heard of this ward before sir,” Tonks said curiously to the Healer.

“It’s not really a ward you would have heard of. I opened this place around eight years ago, with quite a few sponsors surprisingly, and made it into a free clinic for werewolf-involved families,” the Healer that Tonks was beginning to believe was John Lupin explained. “It is certainly not the biggest money-maker, nor the most popular, but I feel that my talents are going to their best use doing this.”

“So…you’re John Lupin then?” Tonks asked. The Healer smiled and walked with her to a curtained work station.

“Yes I am, and I assume you are my new daughter-in-law?” John asked good-naturedly, gesturing for a very shocked Tonks to sit.

“How did you—?”

“I have a few friends in the Werewolf Registry Centre who owled me in congratulations, and though I am disappointed I wasn’t invited I understand,” John said as Tonks sat. One of the small children on the other side of the room started crying in pain. “Excuse me please.” He walked over to the little girl who was holding her bleeding arm, so small Tonks hadn’t noticed her lying in the bed.

“Greyback got my little girl,” the mother said, unexpectedly meeting Tonks’s gaze. “He’s gotten all of my children in the years past, and now my little girl too.”

Tonks was so painfully reminded of her own mother, it broke her heart. She felt a much stronger connection to one of the only honorable Black women left.  

KT_Tonguetied

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2007 5:35 pm
Chapter 8

“So is there any particular reason you requested an appointment today Nymphadora?” John asked. Tonks pulled a face.

“Please call me Tonks Healer Lupin,” she said politely.

“Well that would be politically incorrect seeing as you’re married, and everyone calls me John so you might as well,” John corrected her.

“Then call me Dora, or Nym, just not Nymphadora,” Tonks pleaded with him.

“Alright, alright, I’ll call you Dora then,” John surrendered. “Now anyway, you owled for a physical, did you not?”

“Yeah, about that…I need a pregnancy test that works after only a few hours,” Tonks said quickly. John’s flushed face reminded her that she hadn’t explained the circumstances under which she and Remus had married. “John?”

“Yes Dora?” John asked as he pulled a few small instruments out of a cabinet.

“Remus and I…there wasn’t really a wedding…it happened last night. We ran into each other in the woods, and instinct took over. We never planned anything like this, it’s just Werewolf Law. I read about it in my sixth year,” Tonks said quietly, looking away from the silver rod John was now putting some sort of gel on.

“I see,” he said thoughtfully, his brow furrowed in the concentration of healing.

“What’s that going to do?” Tonks asked, trying to change the subject.

“This is going to work like a Muggle sonogram; do you know what that is?” John asked, now in full Healer mode. Tonks shook her head. “Well a sonogram sends ultrasound waves into you and bounces off everything solid. The image will appear on the screen here,” he tapped a small monitor behind Tonks’s head. “This instrument is a bit more sensitive than the Muggle version, so it can sense an embryo in a werewolf before it’s as advanced as in an average human.”

“Sounds complicated,” Tonks said uncertainly.

“It isn’t that bad. I just put the ball at the tip of the rod on your stomach, and we look at the image on the monitor,” John explained. “Now, if you would lie back and pull up your shirt please?” Tonks, now thoroughly nervous, lay down on the clean bed, and brought the hem of her shirt up to the bottom of her chest to expose her flat stomach.

But flat for how long? Tonks thought nervously, shivering from the cold gel on her stomach.

“Sorry about the gel,” John murmured, staring intensely at the screen of the monitor.

“No problem,” Tonks whispered, turning her head upside-down to look at the monitor for herself. With a small sigh, she whispered, “So…am I…?” John didn’t answer straight-away, squinting at a small white dot on the screen. He twiddled a small dial under the screen and it zoomed in closer.

“You, Dora, are officially one day pregnant,” he finally said. Tonks felt shock waves run through her body. She sat up so quickly the metal rod went flying from John’s hand and onto the floor. Her shirt fell down and stuck to the gel on her stomach as she stared at the now blank screen. John bent over to pick up the rod and looked worriedly at Tonks, who looked to be in a state of shock.

“I’m fine,” Tonks said quickly, waving away the glass to water John had conjured and offered. “I’m just worried about what’s going to happen.”

“You have every right to be worried,” John stated, handing Tonks a hand towel to wipe off the gel on her stomach and sitting on the stool beside the bed. “You need to know, in order to make a rational decision, that werewolf pregnancies are extremely high-risk, especially for your first child, and with you being a Metamorphmagus.”

“I’m sorry, what? What does my morphing have to do with—?”

“Let me explain please,” John interrupted. “With your special abilities comes a certain amount of stress on your body. It has to constantly be on the alert, constantly change itself and its appearance to fit your mood. Even though you can’t feel it, there is a lot of stress on your body from that. There are also the stresses on your body from transforming into a wolf every month that add onto your workload. Now, along with everyday stresses of being a witch you will have added on hormones on your plate. All of these stresses can lead to miscarriage in earlier stages of pregnancy. But also, in werewolves, there is a large amount of risk in the mother and child.”

“Why?”

“If both parents are a werewolf, which is rarely the case, then it is guaranteed the child will be a werewolf like its parents. During the full moon, even as a fetus, the child will transform in the mother’s womb.”

“What!?”

“Yes, I know. If the mother, or you in this case, does not take the proper precautions like an extra half-dose of Wolfsbane…well…there have been cases where…”

“Where what?”

“I don’t want to tell you.”

“John I need to know.”

“I know you do, but…you’re not going to like it,” John said with a sigh. “There have been some extremely rare cases where…where the mother hasn’t taken either enough Wolfsbane or any at all…the child would…would kill its mother from the inside, usually with small blunt claws and causing severe internal bleeding…sufficiently killing the mother and the child itself.”

“That’s horrible,” Tonks said, feeling slightly sick at the thought of her own child doing that to her.

“I know, that’s why I didn’t want to tell you. But, at least now you know the risks and…and can make an informed decision. I will understand any decision you will make,” John stood and crossed the room to deal with the little girl’s paperwork from earlier in the day while Tonks thought. That was a lot of risk to think about on her behalf, and she knew that if Remus had heard the same thing he would have asked her not to go through with the pregnancy for her own sake. She wasn’t like those batty old women who thought that once you got in the mess you were stuck for life, she believed all women were entitled to their own choice, but…she just couldn’t do it herself. Not to an innocent child.

“I’m not having an abortion,” she finally said. “I’m having a baby…I’m having a puppy.” A small smile crossed hers and John’s faces. She looked up at John. “Are you excited? You are going to be a grandfather after all.”

“Well I already am a grandfather.”

“What?” Tonks asked suspiciously.

“I have three daughters as well as Remus, all older, all really girly, lots of kids,” explained Tonks’s father-in-law.

“Ohh…that makes more sense than what I thought,” Tonks said with a slow nod. John laughed appreciatively as he pulled Tonks to her feet.

“Why don’t you come by day before next full moon, and we can check how you’re progressing,” John said as he handed Tonks her cloak. “And Dora…please consider telling Remus about this.” Tonks just looked at him for a few moments, contemplating his words.

“Alright, I’ll think about it,” she said with a quick nod, turning to leave.

“Oh and Dora, remember to stay away from strenuous activity!” John called to Tonks’s retreating back. She waved behind her back to show she understood.

By the time Tonks got to her mother’s house and into her room, she was in tears. Andromeda saw her distress in the entryway and followed her up. Andromeda stood in the doorway, watching her daughter lie facedown on the bed, her shoulders shaking as she cried into a pillow.

“Nymphadora, sweetheart, what happened?” Andromeda asked soothingly as she walked into the room and draped an arm over her daughter’s shoulders. She crawled over the distressed woman and pulled the covers over them both like when Tonks was just a girl. Tonks turned over and faced her mother, tears falling from the corners of her eyes.

“I’m pregnant Mum, and I could die because of it,” she whispered shakily. She allowed her mother to wrap her arms around her shaking shoulders and pull her close.

“Oh, my baby, my child,” Andromeda murmured comfortingly into her daughter’s ear like when she was little. “You’re going to have a child! Are you alright? Have you thought of alternatives?”

“Of course I have Mum, but I couldn’t do it,” Tonks sniffed. “I couldn’t do that to a baby…. John says there’s a chance of miscarriage in earlier months because of the strain on my body while transforming on full moon. I also have to take an additional half dose of Wolfsbane no matter what every month, or a tiny baby werewolf could rip me apart from the inside out.” Andromeda lie in a shocked silence for a moment before Tonks burst out, “God Mum, I don’t know what to do!”

“You need to tell Remus Nymphadora, he needs to know,” Andromeda said immediately. She sat quietly for a few moments before excitedly asking “so do you know if it’s a boy or a girl yet?” Tonks gave a watery chuckle.

“Mum I’m only a day along, how could I know yet?” she asked.

“I don’t know, I’m excited to be a grandmother!” Andromeda said with a bubbly laugh. Tonks gave a small laugh beside her mother.

“Well I have no idea how to be a Mum, so I’ll probably be pestering you most of the time for help…or I could ask one of my sisters-in-law,” she said thoughtfully.

“Remus has sisters?”

“Yeah, three, and apparently they have tons of kids.”

“Wow, four kids, I wonder how their parents managed it. I can see it now, three hormonal teenage girls and a werewolf brother.”

“Actually their dad raised them all, for the most part,” Tonks informed her mother.

“Really?”

“Yeah, Remus’s mum was too scared to handle having a werewolf for a son and left. She would pretend to change her mind, come back and get everyone’s hopes up again, and leave again, but finally stopped coming back when Remus was seventeen.”

“Must have been torture for the poor man.”

“Which, Remus or John?”

“Both I suppose, but I had meant John.”

“Hmm, someone like John, Mum?” Tonks asked suggestively. Andromeda pretended to hit her.

“I sympathize with the man, that’s all. I know how he feels, remember, your father walked out on us too,” she pointed out.

“Yeah, I suppose you’re right, but still, I remember now, it always seemed like in the first few years when there wasn’t Wolfsbane yet, and you would take me to the hospital for the oddest things, you and John would talk and talk…my goodness John has changed since.” Andromeda pulled the pillow out from under her head and hit her daughter over the head with it. “Ah, Mum!” Tonks retaliated with her own pillow until there were feathers floating around the room and both women were breathless.

“It’s getting late, I should make dinner, are you staying?” Andromeda asked after they lay still and quiet for a while. Tonks remembered there was an Order meeting tonight.

“I can’t Mum; I have to be somewhere tonight.” Tonks pushed herself up off the bed and grabbed her cloak off the floor. “I’ll come by tomorrow, okay?” Andromeda sat up suspiciously.

“You never come around two days in a row,” she said with narrowed eyes. Tonks sat down on the bed again.

“There was a woman in the ward today; all four of her children had been bitten by Greyback. Her youngest had just been bitten, and all she could say was ‘he got my little girl’ over and over again. I guess it made me think of you Mum. So…I’m gonna try to come around more, so you know I’m okay,” Tonks said resignedly. Andromeda sat up and put a hand on her daughter’s smooth white cheek, feeling still like it belonged to the teenage girl she thought she once knew.

“I wish I could believe you when you say you’re okay, so I’m glad I’ll be able to see it now,” she said quietly. “I’ll walk you to the door.”

“Thanks Mum,” Tonks said, giving her mother a tight hug at the door, “for everything.”

“No problem love, just promise to be careful on your missions with the Order,” Andromeda said. Tonks spun around and stared at her mother in shock. Unable to say anything, she merely shook her head an Apparated to Grimmauld Place.

“Hey I wasn’t expecting you here either,” Sirius said as Tonks came out of the fireplace. She brushed the ashes off of her cloak and smiled at Sirius.

“Last night was much better than expected,” she said mysteriously as she went to the kitchen. Sirius followed her suspiciously.

“Remus is looking pretty good as well, do you know why?” Sirius asked with a quizzical brow raised. He had been acting funny since he found out she and Remus were ‘close,’ as Molly called it. Sirius flooed her later the day before the full moon and told her that, after Harry spent all morning in the bathroom panicking about what was happening to him, Molly forbid any public displays of affection around the under-ages. Tonks groaned for about fifteen minutes over that one, but decided to keep it clean anyway. Unless, of course, Molly wasn’t around to pry.

“Hello stranger,” a familiar low voice said from behind her. Tonks turned to look at Remus, her smile slightly strained as a sudden wave of shock ran through her again. It was hard to believe she was going to have the child of a man so special to her heart.

“Hello love,” she said with a halfhearted kiss. As if out of nowhere Molly popped up, glared at them, and vanished into the woodwork again. Tonks felt as if she had been punched it had happened so quickly. “Well that was odd.”

“She’s been doing that all day, trying to keep an eye on us adults,” Remus said with a coy smile. Tonks couldn’t help but smile in return, and wrap her arms around Remus’s waist. She wanted to badly to tell him already, but was afraid of the consequences that would bring. Would he be angry with her for keeping their accidental marriage a secret? She knew he would be mad about keeping the baby a secret, but it wouldn’t be normal to know so soon. It hadn’t even been twenty four hours yet, and it was a solid fact that she was pregnant.

There was the sound of someone clearing their throat, and Remus and Tonks nearly dove away from one another. It was all of the kids getting ready for dinner before the Meeting. Tonks must have been brainwashed by her mother’s constant talk to her cousins of ‘eat a lot when you’re pregnant, even if you aren’t hungry,’ because she ate quite a bit more than usual. It wasn’t quite enough for any other members to tell, but she certainly noticed.

After a while Ginny and Hermione began to ask Tonks to put on different noses for their amusement. Tonks was a bit on edge about it, remembering what John said about the stress her powers put on her body. Well, if any other woman did strenuous activities in their first month when they were completely unaware, why couldn’t she feign ignorance for one night? She made her nose into Snape's hooked one, shouting that she was docking fifty points from Gryffindor to each of them (even the adults from other houses), making them laugh uproariously. She even got an amused glance from Molly, who seemed glad she had two fewer children to entertain.

It was the same old story at the meeting, Snape dropping hints all over about how he was risking his life while Sirius sat around like a housewife. Tonks wanted to hit him. No, kick him. Kick him where no woman had ever dared go near on that man. She discreetly reached over and squeezed Sirius’s forearm, the muscles tense from his clenched fist. His hand wriggled around for a moment under the table until it found hers and gripped tightly. Even though the bones in her fingers felt like they were going to fuse together, she let him squeeze it, knowing it might at least help him a bit.

“What say you, Tonks?” Dumbledore asked, pulling Tonks out of her mental Snape-bashing.

“I, uh, er…I-I agree,” Tonks stammered. Sirius dropped her hand in shock, and she wondered what she had just agreed to.

“Excellent then, it is decided. Remus and Tonks will set out after next full moon to gather information with the ferals for three weeks,” Dumbledore announced. Tonks froze, several curse words that would make even the surliest sailor blush running through her mind.  
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 1:54 pm
Chapter 9

Tonks was unable to look Remus in the eye for days, worrying about the mission. Would she be able to do it? Would John let her do it? He seemed like the kind of person to be extremely protective, having raised three girls and a werewolf. She remembered how her mother always was around prejudiced people when she was younger.

She recalled one particularly sentimental time, when her mother once sent a Howler to every Wizarding parent who had written Dumbledore, demanding Tonks’s expulsion. Despite her mother’s protests, it had to happen. They were going to involve the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures if she wasn’t removed from the school. She was sixteen at the time, and was beaten up every day for a week when the news of her condition got out. She was a scrawny youth, but had thankfully filled out more in the six years between then and now.

After two weeks of her suspicious behavior, Tonks felt dread fill her stomach when Remus approached her after everyone was asleep. He had wrapped his arms around her waist and whispered in her ear, “It’s alright to be worried about the mission, you know. I’ve never been seriously hurt, only small bruises and scrapes.”

“I know Remus, it’s just…” Tonks heaved a small sigh, “…I don’t even know what it is. I’m sorry, I’ve been acting weird. I’m just reminiscing, I suppose. Thinking about how my mother would feel if she knew where I was going.” She nearly told Remus about being expelled from Hogwarts, but knew he would be angry about it and do that pacing thing he always did when upset. They were interrupted when Sirius came in the drawing room, looking confused and nervous.

“Tonks, did you tell your mother where Headquarters was?” he asked suspiciously. Tonks removed herself from Remus’s arms to look at her cousin properly.

“No I didn’t, why, is she here?” she asked worriedly. Sirius’s nod of confirmation sent Tonks rushing out to meet her mother in the foyer. Andromeda looked slightly shell-shocked from seeing her cousin, but Tonks was too distracted by the man behind her to really notice.

“Dad?” she asked incredulously. Ted Tonks smiled as if he had never walked out on her and her mother when she was eight. Tonks felt Remus’s presence in the doorway behind her.

“Hello Nym dear, how are you?” he asked. Tonks blinked absently at him.

“Is that…is that all you have to say to me after fourteen years of absence?” Tonks asked weakly. A few unconvincing emotions passed over Ted’s face before he spoke again.

“Well…your mother…she told me you were in trouble, so I came to make sure you were alright.”

“You’ve been communicating with him?” Tonks asked her mother in disbelief.

“Only recently,” Andromeda said, “only when you told me you were pregnant.” Tonks’s frantic hand gestures hadn’t been enough to get her mother to stop speaking. Andromeda must have either not seen Remus or thought her daughter had told him by now. Tonks spun around to look at her accidental husband. He was white with shock, staring so intensely at her abdomen she thought he might have been trying to tell if she was showing or not. His eyes traveled up to meet her pleading ones, and left the foyer.

“Remus, wait!” she called after him. She turned back to her mother and Ted. “I want you gone when I get back,” she said coldly to her father, running up to catch Remus. She stopped his door from slamming shut with her foot, though a loud bang still sent sounds of the kids waking down the hall. She heard Fred and George’s door opening, and knew that two heads were sticking out to see what the commotion was about.

“Remus, please listen to me,” she said, not caring if the entire house listened in on their conversation. Remus was sitting on the bed, his head in his hands.

“Whose is it?” he asked, looking up at the wall in front of him with red eyes. Tonks stiffened as she heard the twins huddle against the closer side of the doorframe.

“Remus, do you really think I would…I would do that to you? I would never hurt you like that!” Tonks protested, rushing into the room to sit beside him.

“I wasn’t saying that you would. You must be a few months along to know, and we’ve only been seeing each other about a month. I just wanted to know who did this to you,” Remus said slowly, as if trying to explain algebra to a seven year old. Tonks felt her face flush.

You did this to me Remus, I’m only a few weeks along,” Tonks said, crossing her arms over her stomach. She could hear the twins edging out of their room, along with two other pairs of feet coming quietly up the stairs. Harry and Ron were listening now too. Perfect.

“Were you planning on telling me?” Remus accused her. Tonks started at his tone.

“Of course I was Remus, I was just…just…I was just scared, Remus!” Tonks said, covering her eyes with one hand. “Remus, look at me!” she cried desperately, fighting the tears that were building in her eyes. Remus refused to meet her eyes or even turn his head in her direction.

“When did this happen, Tonks?”

“On the fu—”

I know it was on full moon, I want to know when on full moon!” Remus said so loudly and so sharply Tonks propelled herself to her feet and backed against the wall by the door. It seemed that Remus knew all too well about Werewolf Mating Laws. She was shaking and crying now, covering her mouth with her hand to muffle the single sob that attempted to break free.

“I don’t know Remus, I don’t know when it was—” Tonks sobbed, but Remus didn’t look so convinced.

“You would know when it was Tonks, stop lying and tell me!” Remus’s voice had risen to a shout. He got up from the bed and cornered her against the wall. Tonks slid down the wall, her only option, and sat with her knees drawn to her chest crying.

“It was after we transformed,” Tonks just barely managed to whisper. Remus knelt in front of her, gripping her shoulders in his hands. “I got this letter in the m-mail…and…and…Remus, you’re hurting me!” Remus let go of her shoulders quickly. His grip had slowly been tightening until she felt like her shoulders were going to shatter. He let out a long sigh, his warm breath not doing anything to comfort her now.

“I’m sorry,” he finally breathed out.

“D-don’t be, I deserved it,” Tonks choked out, still shaking.

“No, I shouldn’t have…it was practically a domestic crime…” Remus said slowly. Tonks knew what he meant, he had meant wife-beating.

“I’m so sorry Remus,” Tonks whispered, tears still falling from her eyes, “I’m so, so sorry….” She wiped her eyes on her sleeve hurriedly. “I have to go make sure Ted left.” She crawled out of Remus’s reach and staggered to her feet outside the door. Basically all of the kids, Sirius, Molly, and Arthur were staring at her as she continued to wipe the remnants of tears from her cheeks. She acted as if the others weren’t there, leaning against the wall and closing her eyes.

“Tonks, if he hit you…” Sirius said dangerously.

“He didn’t, I’m overreacting, I swear,” Tonks said quickly, her voice shaky and thick. She pushed off the wall and went down the stairs two at a time to get back to the drawing room. Her mother and the man she no longer saw as her father were still there. “I thought I told you to leave Ted,” she said coldly, crossing her arms again.

“I’m not leaving until I know you’re okay,” Ted said firmly, crossing his own arms. Only Andromeda was in the room at the time to notice that, at that very moment, the resemblance between father and daughter was alarming.

“Why does it matter so much to you, Ted?” Tonks asked loudly. She could now hear Molly ushering the kids back to bed. “No, wait, I know the answer to this one. You wanted to be able to go back to whoever it is you’re with right now, tell them your daughter tragically got knocked up by her werewolf husband, so you can tell them you asked if I was okay.

“You know that I’m a pushover, and that I’ll say I’m fine no matter what. You’ll tell your mates that I said I was fine, so what could you do? You couldn’t make yourself stay, right? Well, you know what Ted? I’m fine, I’m just peachy. One of the best things that has ever happened to me is probably about to end, but yeah, I’m just fine, so you can go on your merry way.”

Ted and Tonks stared at each other, the latter breathing heavily and pointing at the door for emphasis. His eyebrows were raised slightly as if in surprise.

“What, you expected me to still be talking like an eight year old?” Tonks asked, her anger wither her incompetent father rising by the minute.

“I guess I did,” Ted said quietly. He forced a pained smile. “I know when I’m not wanted. I’ll just be off. Good bye Nym, good bye Andromeda.” The moment the door closed behind her father, Tonks dissolved into tears, dropping to her knees on the floor. Her right hand held her head up at the forehead, and her left was over her stomach. Andromeda quickly stepped forward and wrapped her arms around Tonks’s shaking shoulders.

“If it’s any consolation, I think you handled that very well,” she said quietly.

“I don’t even care Mum…Remus is so mad at me…why did you have to bring him here Mum?” Tonks sobbed into her mother’s shoulder like a child.

“Dora I am so sorry, you know how he was like before he left…I was afraid of him, Dora…he was so persistent,” Andromeda said consolingly. Tonks pulled away from her mother’s embrace.

“How did you even know where I was?” Andromeda gave a small, Mona Lisa-like, Black through-and-through smile.

“I’m a mother, I always know,” she said, brushing her daughter’s fringe out of her eyes. Tonks smiled weakly, exhausted by her tears.

“Can I come home for the night? I don’t want to be here right now,” she asked hopefully.

“You can always come home Dora,” Andromeda said, getting up and pulling Tonks to her feet. As they left the house Tonks could hear Sirius shouting at Remus, and felt both ashamed and comforted.

Tonks stayed up all night in her room, the walls a dark midnight blue, crying her eyes out until morning’s first light. She was so scared that Remus was going to hate her forever. At five in the morning, around a half hour before her mother woke up, Tonks was still awake. She got up off the bed and crept into the bathroom across the hall to wash her face. Looking in the mirror, she knew she would need much more than some warm water to get rid of her red eyes, nose, cheeks, and mousey brown hair.

“Last time,” she whispered to herself, morphing her face back to its normal paleness but keeping her hair the way it was. Her shoulders sagged and she sniffed, unable to do anything about her plugged nose. She retreated back to her room and finally managed to fall asleep for about a half hour. When she woke up at six she could hear her mother moving around and making breakfast. She trudged down the stairs and into the kitchen.

“Good morning Mum,” she said hoarsely, sitting at the table beside a silent Nonna and burying her face in her hands.

“Good morning Love, I made…comfort breakfast,” Andromeda said as she piled plates of different kinds of pancakes on the table, “if comfort breakfast is a real thing that is. Well anyway, I’ve got regular pancakes, chocolate chip pancakes, blueberry pancakes, pumpkin pancakes, and I even went crazy and made lemon poppy-seed pancakes.”

“So, in a nutshell, pancakes are comfort breakfast?” Tonks asked as she took three chocolate chip pancakes. Her mother gave her a critical look. “What?” she asked. Her mother raised an eyebrow and looked at the amount of food on her plate. Tonks heaved a sigh and took a pumpkin and lemon pancake as well. Andromeda looked satisfied and tucked into her own breakfast.

After Tonks forced herself to eat all of the food on her plate to please her mother, she went into the sitting room to talk to Nonna, who had moved in last week.

La Nonna, mi sono così preoccupato,” she said thickly. ((Nonna, I’m so worried.))

Perché lei si è così preoccupato di questo Dora? È gentiluomo, farà la cosa giusta,” Nonna said consolingly, patting her granddaughter’s hand with her wrinkly one. ((Why are you so worried about this Dora? He's a gentleman, he'll do the right thing.))

Ma è la Nonna così arrabbiato, neanche potrebbe guardarme ieri sera,” Tonks argued, tears building in her eyes again. ((But he's so angry Grandma, he couldn't even look at me last night.))

Sì, era sconvolto, ma ciò non lo significa non penserà che le cose sopra e faccia la decisione giusta,” Nonna said comfortingly. Tonks finally sniffed again and nodded. As if Nonna were a Seer, she heard the ward chime at the door. ((Yes, he was upset, but that doesn't mean he won't think things over and make the right decision.))

Tonks listened carefully as her mother answered the door. Her hear swelled and eyes welled up when she heard Remus’s voice, exactly like when he had come to fetch her for the Order. She rushed to the door to the entryway and pressed her ear against it.

“Remus, I’m not even going to pretend it’s a pleasant surprise,” Andromeda said in a coldly civil voice.

“I don’t want you to pretend anyway Andromeda. But, I was wondering if…if I could speak to your daughter,” Remus said uncertainly. Tonks’s ear began to ache she was pressing it against the door so hard.

“I’m sorry Remus; I don’t think that would be a good idea right now. She had a rough night last night,” Andromeda said, acting far too civil to mean anything good. Tonks so badly wanted to run through the door, but she was afraid of what news it would bring her.

“Andromeda…Andromeda, please…” Remus pleaded. A single tear ran down her face, hearing and feeling his utter desperation. She opened the door quietly and stepped into a shadow of the dark hallway, the day too young for the sun to be up properly.

“Remus, I said no. Dora was very distressed last night, and more stress is the very last thing she needs,” Andromeda said in her mother-voice. Tonks distinctly remembered her father calling her a mother lion on numerous occasions. As a joke, her mother would resignedly say ‘roar’ whenever she freaked out over something that had to do with her.

“Mum, just let him in,” Tonks forced herself to say, her voice scratchy with weariness. Andromeda and Remus’s gazes whipped to her so quickly Tonks heard her mother’s neck crack. Andromeda walked over to her and put her hands on her shoulders.

“Are you sure? Dora, I don’t want you to get hurt,” Andromeda said nervously.

“Mum I’m twenty-two; I think I can handle myself alright. If I get hurt I get hurt, but if I don’t I don’t, okay?” Tonks said gently. Andromeda resignedly squeezed her daughter’s shoulders. “Roar?” Tonks asked. Andromeda’s face twisted into a small smile.

“Roar,” she said, kissing Tonks’s forehead before disappearing into the sitting room again. Tonks gave a small sigh, leaning against the wall, looking at Remus. He looked quite lost for words now that she looked at him properly, pale and with dark shadows under his eyes to match her own. He finally took a deep breath, readying himself to speak.

“Dora, listen I…” He paused, and Tonks could hear her mother’s head press against the door. Tonks quickly stepped forward and, holding a hand over his mouth with a warning glance, led him through an alternate doorway up to her room. Once there, she sat on her bed and gestured for Remus to sit beside her. Tonks sat silently, waiting for Remus to speak, but he seemed at a loss for words again.

“So, I suppose you’re here to end things with me, right?” Tonks asked, hugging her knees up to her chest and looking away from Remus. Her accidental husband started in surprise and turned to look at her.

“Why would I be here to end things with you?” he asked gently, cupping her red teary cheek in his large hand to make her face him. She blinked quickly, forcing more tears back.

“Why would you not be here to end things with me?” she asked thickly, pulling her face gently out of his hand. “I lied to you, Remus. I should have told you everything right away from the moment I got the letter, but I didn’t, and…and Remus, you know how sorry I am, but—” Remus put a hand over her mouth to keep her from beginning a rant, but she pulled it off of her mouth.

“Remus, I snuck into your house and I took your mail because it had this marriage certificate in it and I didn’t want you to find out. That’s why I was there when you got back,” she paused breathlessly. “I am so ashamed of myself Remus, I couldn’t even sleep last night I was so ashamed of myself, and so worried, and I’m so, so sorry.” Remus’s hand came up to cover her mouth again but she blocked it. “I’b dod, I probise,” she said, her voice thick with new tears. “Just blease ndow thad I do lub you, add if I cood accidedally barry adyonde, it wood be you.” She started crying into her lap, her entire body shaking, still afraid that Remus was going to leave her all alone.

Remus put his arms around her and quickly hugged her to his chest, swaying gently. “I’m not mad anymore Dora,” he whispered into her ear. “I overreacted last night, and I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have yelled at you in your condition, and you have no idea how horrible I feel for making you cry. I was up all night last night too, thinking things over. I’m not going to end things with you. I would never end things with you under these circumstances.

“So you’re staying with be out of bity? Wow, every little girl’s dreamb comb true,” Tonks cut in, pulling away from Remus and getting weepy again. Remus took one of her hands in his, squeezing it gently.

“I’m not staying with you out of pity Dora,” Remus informed her. “I want to be a father, and it would just be foolish to pretend we weren’t married if you’re having a baby.” When Tonks rolled her eyes and turned her head away Remus grabbed her chin and made her look at him again. “Dora, love, that came out wrong! I just meant that…well…” he made an imitation voice of Tonks’s previous sniffles, “I dink I lub you too.” Despite her best efforts, Tonks allowed Remus to hug her again and, being the emotional wreck that she was that day, started laughing and crying at the same time. At least this time they were happy tears.

“God, you’re so cute,” she said weepily into his neck. Remus grinned and kissed the top of her head.

“But Dora, there is something we need to discuss,” Remus said gently after Tonks had calmed down a bit. She sniffed, wiped her eyes, and smiled broadly.

“Yeah, okay, I’m up for anything after all that,” she said a bit thickly. She rested her head on Remus’s shoulder to listen to him more carefully.

“Well, it’s about the mission with the werewolves…Dora, I don’t think you should go,” Remus said as quickly as if he were trying to rid his mouth of poison. Tonks lifted her head now and looked up at him.

“Remus, you said it was perfectly safe!” Tonks said curiously.

“It usually is, but you’re…you’re…” Remus stammered, turning furiously red. Tonks blinked innocently at him, knowing what the word would be. Instead of making him answer she planted a kiss on his lips. A sudden thought coming to her, she bent down and opened the warded drawer.

“Here, this is yours,” she said sheepishly, handing him his copy of the congratulations letter and marriage certificate. He read silently for much less time it took for her to read it, and smiled slightly after he finished it.

“I suppose we should make an appointment sometime soon, eh?” he asked. Tonks grinned and kissed him again.

“Perhaps we should. We should go talk to Mum, let her know what’s going on before she strokes out on us,” Tonks joked. Remus nodded understandingly. “Should I go alone, or do you want to come protect me?” Remus laughed and got up with her, clasping her hand gently in his own.

It did seem that they would get through this, better or worse.  

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KT_Tonguetied

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2007 6:44 pm
To sum it up, Andromeda accepted what had happened and Remus’s taking a night to sort out his thoughts, but it didn’t mean she was happy with it. Throughout the entire discussion she and Remus had (Tonks translating to Nonna in a whisper) she had one eyebrow aristocratically raised, just like the Black she pretended not to be. Sirius would have been disgusted, were he there.

Il Dora, starà con lei, non è?” Nonna asked for the fourth time as Remus and Andromeda continued to argue animatedly. ((Dora, he is going to stay with you, isn’t he?))

Non certo è Nonna, perché farebbe egli? È perfettamente rispettabile, dopotutto,” Tonks whispered with a smile playing across her face. ((Of course he is Nonna, why wouldn’t he? Like you said, he’s perfectly respectable, after all.))

Ma l'ama, lo fa non? Non sta appena a causa del bambino?” Nonna asked worriedly, wringing her thin knotted hands in her lap. Her eyed were sad and scared. Tonks knew that moving was too hard on her at such an age, but she had seemed to be worrying about everything lately. ((But he loves you, doesn’t he? He isn’t just staying because of the baby?))

No, Nonna, me ha detto me ama, non è la maniera lei pensa che sia, prometto,” Tonks reassured her grandmother, patting her hand sympathetically. She really was concerned for her grandmother, but it wasn’t like she could do much lately. ((No, Nonna, he told me he loves me, it isn’t the way you think it is, I promise))

Bene…if lei è Dora sicuro…” Nonna said, though not sounding entirely assured. Tonks sighed slightly, knowing Nonna would always be uncertain no matter how much she assured her. ((Well…if you’re certain Dora…))

“Alright, Mother, please stop harassing my husband,” Tonks finally cut in when her mother inquired after Remus’s financial situation. “We both have steady jobs that pay good money, we’ll be fine!”

“But for how long, Nymphadora?”’ Andromeda asked loudly. “You of all people should know that someone with your condition should never be comfortable in one place for too long.”

“Mum, I thought we agreed not to talk about that anymore!” Tonks said with equal volume. They had both agreed when Tonks was seventeen that they would never mention her expulsion again. Now Remus was looking at her questioningly.

“Well perhaps we should bring up the subject again, now that you’re starting a family,” Andromeda argued.

“Mother, what does my education, or lack thereof, have to do with my family?” Tonks asked stonily, no longer caring what Remus heard. It felt odd, for her to already be referring to Remus as her family. She had only been thinking that for the past several weeks.

“I’m just thinking…that maybe you should go back to school,” Andromeda said thoughtfully.

“No,” Tonks said immediately, finality in her voice that her mother chose to ignore. “Mum, I’m not going back to Hogwarts!”

“I’m not saying you should, I’m saying you should get the texts for the average seventh year student, and owl Dumbledore to get him to send you a N.E.W.T. when all the other seventh years do them,” Andromeda explained.

“Mum, I don’t want to, it’s not like it’s going to help!” Tonks protested.

“You don’t know that Nymphadora, you have no idea how much more respect you could receive if you had a full education along with your condition,” Andromeda said steadily.

“Mother, a werewolf is a werewolf is a werewolf, why can’t you just get that into your head!?” Tonks said, her voice rising yet again.

“I will not be spoken to like I am stupid in my own home!” Andromeda said in her mother lion-voice, standing up in her anger. Tonks shot up as well, meeting her mother’s gaze intensely.

“Fine, I’ll just leave and verbally abuse you elsewhere!” she spat as if she were swearing. “Come on Remus; let’s go back to your place or something.” She grabbed Remus’s hand and pulled him up after her as she left her mother’s house.

“What the hell was that!?” Remus asked the moment they were out the front door. He had hoped that his cussing would shock her into stopping, and it was not in vain. Tonks froze mid-step, and spun around to face her husband.

“You said hell,” she said with wide shocked eyes.

“I knew it would at least slow you down,” Remus said with a shrug. “Now, would you be so kind as to explain what I just overheard back there?” Tonks heaved a great sigh and leaned her head on Remus’s shoulder as they began to walk again.

“When I was in my sixth year at Hogwarts one of the girls in my dorm found out about my condition,” she started, bitterness biting at her voice. “I tried to get her to understand that I wasn’t dangerous but for once a month, and even then I was under Wolfsbane, but she didn’t believe me. Or Madam Pomfrey. Or Dumbledore. Or McGonagall. Or my mother, for Merlin’s sake! Well, she told the three other girls in my dorm and her parents, who told three more people and their parents, who told three more and their parents, and so on and so on. Finally the owls started pouring in from concerned parents threatening to get the Werewolf Registry Centre involved. Dumbledore couldn’t ignore so many demands, so I had to be expelled.

“My mother was quite the sight to see by then though. I had been at home for a few days already, and my Mum was still sending off Howlers to every parent who wrote in to Dumbledore. She couldn’t speak for weeks, which was a small blessing, but a blessing in a particularly dreary time nonetheless.”

You…were expelled…from Hogwarts!?” Remus asked, anger evident in his voice. Tonks wrapped a hand around the crook of his arm.

“Yes I was, but I don’t really enjoy talking about it,” Tonks said pointedly, giving a hint to drop the subject for now. Remus put an arm around her waist and pulled her even closer than either of them thought possible. Tonks decided to broach the subject. “So…if my math is right—which probably isn’t—then I should be due around…May third? Yeah, it should be either the third or fourth.” Tonks loved the smile that filled Remus’s lined face.

“Speaking of the baby,” Remus said with happiness in his eyes at the mere mention, “I was thinking earlier, that you might move in with me.”

“Hm, a married couple living together? Well that would just be unethical Remus! I mean really, where do you get such silly ideas?” Tonks asked teasingly. Remus smiled and shook his head, not even bothering to say a word for several minutes.

“Do you need anything from your flat?” Remus asked finally, noticing that they were getting closer to her building. “If you need something I don’t want you in there alone.” Dumbledore had Mad-Eye stomp around Tonks’s flat a few days previously and the Auror said he hadn’t seen anything suspicious except an excess amount of dust. Remus was still suspicious, and Tonks worried, about Greyback still finding some way to watch the flat.

“Yeah, let’s head up,” Tonks said, opening the building’s door with a key she kept handy. They both trudged up the stairs to Tonks’s flat. Remus discreetly took out his wand from behind his wife as they entered. He kept his wand trained on the window that Tonks had seen him in the last time she’d been in the flat, while Tonks went into the bedroom and gathered her clothes together. While in there, she took a moment to sit down on the bed. A lot had happened in this flat. This place was where she acknowledged that she was in love with Remus, woke up knowing it. This was where they spent their first date. This was where she lost all control of her morphing powers and spilled hot cocoa on herself just because Remus was at the door. If that old red couch could talk, there would certainly be stories…

Thinking quickly, Tonks also dropped her father’s wedding ring (she stole it from her mother when she was ten) into her pocket. She quickly put her clothes into a suitcase and walked out to the kitchen. She shrank the couch to the size of a domino and put it in her other pocket. “I’m bringing the couch with if you don’t mind,” she said casually. Remus looked at her, finally tearing his eyes away from the window.

“No, I don’t mind. Mine is ugly anyway,” he said after a few moments.

“Well this won’t be much of an improvement, but it’s got good memories in it,” Tonks replied. Remus waited until she was at the door before finally lowering his wand and following her out, Remus insisting that he carry her suitcase for her because it could be too heavy. They then proceeded to walk hand in hand to the nearest alley away from Muggle sight, and made a Portkey out of an old boot (which Remus told Tonks no, she could not keep no matter how cool it looked), and stumbled on Tonks’s part in Remus’s sitting room.

“Shall we get rid of the old couch the easy way or the fun way?” Remus asked, gesturing to his faded brown couch. Tonks smiled and raised an eyebrow.

“The fun way!” she exclaimed, beginning to bounce where she stood.

“Alright, but you’ve got to promise you’ll be careful, because there will probably be wood and upholstery flying,” Remus said sternly.

“Oh well that’s just absurd, Remus! I mean, me, pregnant and careful? Do you really expect me to do that?” Tonks asked sarcastically. Her sarcastic face broke into a smile. If Remus was going to be this sweet for the remainder of her nine months, she was looking forward to it. “I promise I’ll be careful.” She gave him a small smile and quick kiss to assure him that she was sincere. Remus then deposited the suitcase into the bedroom before joining Tonks back in the sitting room and levitating the old couch to the backyard. Tonks placed the new couch in its place before following Remus out.

“So, are we just using plain old Reducto, or are we using the much less popular, but much more immensely satisfying Vernietig?” Tonks asked curiously. Remus grinned wickedly.

“So you know your destruction curses, no wonder you were expelled,” he said, his eyes twinkling with amusement. Tonks laughed. “Take your pick Love, whichever you prefer.” Tonks smiled, raising her wand.

Vernietig!” she said loudly. She and Remus both dove for the ground as the whole couch exploded in a cloud of wood dust and upholstery. Tonks started laughing as Remus rolled on top of her, causing her to roll a few feet with him.

“You alright?” Remus asked breathlessly as the dust settled on the ground. Tonks nodded, laughing and holding Remus’s arms.

“That was fun, eh?” she asked, looking over at the pile of mutilated couch parts. Remus looked over with raised eyebrows and laughed along with her. The old couch was nothing more than a pile of trash.

“That was an impressive piece of spellwork Miss Tonks,” he said in a Professor-like voice while helping a sour-looking Tonks to her feet.

“It’s Mrs. Lupin now, in case you’ve forgotten,” she reminded him with a kiss.

“Right, it still feels so odd to say,” Remus said, sounding a bit dazed.

“Well don’t worry, I’ll be around to remind you every few hours,” Tonks said with a small smile. Remus responded with another kiss. “Are you happy Remus?” she asked after a few more moments of lying in the grass.

“Of course I am Nymphadora, I’ve got you. I never thought I’d even be half as happy as I am now,” Remus said softly. He brushed her hair out of her face. “Why no pink? I found it endearing.”

“John said it could cause too much stress on my body and result in a miscarriage,” Tonks replied, suddenly quite serious. “Actually…there are a lot of things that could result in miscarriage. Let’s see, I’ve already said the Metamorphmagus thing. There’s also the whole…Lycanthropy.” Tonks always hated bringing up this subject because it was such a sensitive topic for him. “You know, the whole ‘every bone in my body dislocating themselves and realigning again in the span of twenty minutes’ could be quite stressful on the body. Those two factors along with other everyday stresses are pretty bad.

“And…John—you’re dad, I mean—told me that…there have been really rare cases, in which the mother would forget to take either a dose and a half or a half dose of Wolfsbane. The baby would…would become feral whilst inside…inside its mother, and…and…Oh, I don’t want to say it!” She buried her face into Remus’s chest with such force they rolled again, making Remus on the bottom. Even though she hadn’t told him Remus could guess what his wife didn’t want to say.

“We should go inside,” Remus finally said, sitting up and holding Tonks in his lap. She nodded quietly, keeping her eyes downcast in shame to her own fear. Remus stood and helped Tonks to her feet. Wrapping an arm around her waist, they walked inside together.

“I should probably unpack my clothes. I promise I won’t hog your space!” Tonks said with a crooked grin.

“Well it’s your space now too, you know,” Remus pointed out. “Feel free to take up as much space as you need, I don’t have many possessions.”

“Well that’s something we have in common, I’ve got my clothes and you.” Tonks burst out laughing at Remus’s look of shock. “I’m kidding! Hey listen, the Order probably still thinks we’re fighting, so while I’m unpacking do you think you could let them know we’re okay so Sirius doesn’t murder you in your sleep?” Remus chuckled lightly at her.

“You just want to avoid the awkward questions don’t you?” he asked accusingly.

“Hey I’m just trying to avoid stress!” Tonks said innocently as she sat down on the couch. Remus sat beside her and wrapped an arm around her waist.

“Fine, I’ll go do your dirty work!” he finally said. “But first, there’s something I want to give you.” He got up and shuffled to the bedroom. Tonks listened intently to the sounds of him looking through many drawers before he came back out again, clutching something in a closed fist.

“What’s that?” she asked curiously, straightening up. Remus sat beside her again.

“Well, my mother gave this to my father when I was six, and he gave it to me. He made me promise to put it to good use, so I hope you like it,” Remus explained slowly. He opened his hand and held out what must have been his mother’s wedding ring to her. Tonks’s breath caught in her throat. She timidly reached out with a shaking hand and took the ring. It was absolutely lovely.

“Oh Remus, I love it! It’s really beautiful,” Tonks said sincerely, turning and kissing Remus’s cheek. “I have Ted’s ring around somewhere, I was going to give that to you later. But, seeing as you’ve given me one…” She reached into her pocket and pulled the ring out. “Here. I know you’ll put it to better use than Ted did.”

“Why don’t you call him your father?” Remus asked as he placed his ring on his finger. Tonks followed suit with her own ring.

“He hasn’t been my father since I was eight years old, that’s just the way I see him,” she said with a shrug. She sighed quietly and rested her head on Remus’s shoulder, staring down at her ring as she entwined her fingers with her husband’s.

“Well would you look at that!” Remus said all of a sudden.

“What?” Tonks asked curiously.

“Our rings match.”  
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