Date: August 1, 1990\ Night after Harry's Birthday- Night after 'THE LETTER' was recieved.

We were entwined in red rings
Of blood and loneliness before
The first snows fell
Before muddy rivers seeded clouds
Above a virgin forest, and
Men ran naked, blue and black
Skinned into the warm embraces
Of Sheba, Eve and Lilith.
I was your sister.

Cecily looked at the piece of parchment on her counter. She glared.

"You know, I found out that there are some wizards who can project a fire spell out of their eyes," Remus commented, leaning against the counter with her. A cup of Irish Breakfast tea was in his hands.

Cecily crossed her arms and glared harder. "Point?" She said, frowning harshly.

Remus chuckled and faced the letter. "I just thought you might want to join them," he took a sip of his tea. "You know, so you can learn how to destroy the piece of mail." He grinned as she gave him a playful(-ish, it was playful to him, he could barely feel it, but she probably meant it in a mean way) punch to the shoulder.

She joined him a second later, laughing and leaning against him. The whole situation was true and utter shite. Cecily's laughter died down seconds later and she sobered up quickly. "I just don't know what to do." She said, sighing heavily.

She felt exhausted.

Remus turned with her as she walked across the kitchen to fill a small, stemless wine glass with some Bordeaux. "You could always have Harry choose."

She looked at him. "Choose schools?"

Remus nodded. Cecily took a large sip from her glass. "He knows that with everything in life there are more than one choice. I….gah! Why does parenting have to be so hard?!"

Remus chuckled again, drinking from his own cup. "I'm pretty sure parents have been wondering that for a very long time."

Cecily smiled a bit bitterly into her glass. "Yes, but those parents didn't have two megalomaniacs after their child, trying to manipulate him every which way."

Remus smiled calmly at her. "I'm sure that Harry will listen to you and consider all options before picking a school to go to. I'm all for going to the Yanks for help, if need be. I heard Ilvermorny was a great school and similar to Hogwarts."

Another sigh came from her, and another drink, before she sat her glass down and walked back over to him. She looked at the letter. "No matter what, I've promised to let him choose his own destiny in life." She looked back at Remus.

The wolf sucked in a breathe at the fire in her eyes.

She continued. "But, that doesn't mean I won't do anything and everything in my power to make sure my babe is safe from danger."

And, Merlin help those poor souls that would try and harm a hair on Hadrian Potter-Graemark's head.

You left me to force strangers
Into brother molds, exacting
Taxations they never
Owed or could ever pay.
You fought to die, thinking
In destruction lies the seed
Of birth. You may be right.

The smell of pancakes woke both Cecily and Harry up. They trudged down the hall, Harry in Cecily's arms, as they made their way towards the delicious smell. Cecily yawned jaw-breakingly as she stepped foot into the kitchen. The sight of a domestic Remus made her heart warm.

Gone were the dark circles under his eyes. Now, his eyes were full of love and light. Gone were the scraggly beard and malnourishment. Now, Remus had a thick head of hair, full beard, and he had filled out quite nicely, if Cecily did say so herself. And she did, but to herself.

"You two are so alike, I don't know whether to be scared or in awe." Remus said, setting a cup of coffee in front of Cecily and a cup of black tea in front of Harry.

"A bit of both," Mother and son said together, before turning to each other and giggling. Remus chuckled and gave Harry a kiss on the forehead.

"Alright, you heathens. Who wants pancakes?" Two pairs of eyes lit up at the word causing Remus to laugh again and dish up the two morning grouches.

After everyone was seated and eating, Cecily turned to look at her baby. "So, Harry, sweetheart?"

Harry looked up at her, a piece of pancake hanging halfway out of his mouth. At Cecily's giggle, he quickly shoved the rest into his mouth and swallowed.

"Yes, mum?" He replied.

"We wanted to asked you about school." She said, coming right out and saying. She was never one for sugar coating things. "About where you wanted to go."

Harry pondered. "Well, I don't really know. I mean, Hogwarts is where my parents went, they out me down on the registry- if what you told me was correct, which it probably is- and you went there as well. It might be worth going there for a year or two, to see how it is. Ilvermorny is another good one, but…" he faked a gag and continued, "Americans."

Cecily swatted his shoulder as Remus said, "Come on now, Harry, they're not so bad."

Harry chuckled and put his hands up in surrender. "Yeah, yeah. Anyway, I don't think I want to go to the school in Asia, though the school in Africa would also be good." He turned to his mom. "It'd also be nice to visit Anansi's tribe again." Cecily cracked a grin at that.

"It would be, but… Sweetheart," Cecily looked at him straight on with a serious expression. "I want you to choose someplace that you want to go to, somewhere that makes your heart race and your mind fill with questions and yearn to learn more about it. This will be your home for the next seven years, so you need to be careful in your decision." Harry nodded as he frowned in thought.

Nodding, determined, he raised his chin and looked at her head on. "I want to go to Hogwarts."

I will remember silent walks in
Southern woods and long talks
In low voices
Shielding meaning from the big ears
Of overcurious adults.

Cecily stepped out of her new home, taking in the fog and damp air. She breathed in the wetness and felt her body shiver at the coldness. They were back in England.

She sighed, leaning against the railing of her porch, a cup of fine black tea in her hands. She was never a political person, never saw the usefulness of degrading and undermining people when you could just be more ambitious and outsmart them using logic instead of dirty tricks. Politics itself was dirty, but… in order to protect her boy, she would have to fully take over all lordships and deal with the old codgers in court. She also has to get her Unspeakable position back from Lucian.

She sighed again.

"It's going to be a rough couple of years, isn't it?" Remus rumbled, coming to stand next to her.

"Of course it is, you mutt." Severus replied, gliding over. "Dumbledore isn't going to give up his pawn because he's got a new guardian and the council isn't going to just going to accept her into court with open arms and smiles." He grimaced. "It's going to be a lot of acidic words and they will use whatever weakness you have against you." He looked at Cecily with narrowed eyes.

She nodded and drank her tea. "I know, but right now, all that matters is keeping Hadrian away from the clutches of Voldemort's Death Eaters and making sure that Dumbledore doesn't try and use his influence to change him. Politics are something I was trained in as a Ravenclaw, having to deal with snakes isn't that much of an issue anymore." She chuckled. "Hell, I live with one." Remus tossed a grin in her direction.

"And Hamlet is just as conniving as any slimy politician." He commented, his arms crossed in front of him. "You should see him try and get Cecily to feed him a rat bigger than himself. It's hilarious."

Severus rolled his eyes. "I'm sure." He drawled. "In any case, we are going to have to be ten times as vigilant as we are now," Severus looked out onto the foggy lake. "If he's anything like his father, he'll find trouble whether he likes it or not."

You may be right.

Your slow return from

Regions of terror and bloody

Screams, races my heart.

I hear laughter

Of children and see fireflies

Bursting tiny explosions in

An Arkansas twilight.

-Maya Angelou