Title: Broken Promises
Pairings: SS/HP, SS/HG, HP/GW (sort of), SB/RL, SB/RL/HP, RL/HP
Warnings: Angst, Character Death, MPreg, brief HET sex scene
Summary: Harry's heart is broken. Can Remus and Sirius heal it?
Notes: This fic is part of the 'Mortal Moon' Harry/Remus Fuh-Q-Fest (). Challenge: 9. In the final battle, Remus is hit with a curse that takes twenty years off his body. He's now only a year older than Harry. (Cara)
Beta: Winter Flower
AN2: I am putting this up now, even though there is a dearth of post-OotP stories. For those still angered by the ending. For those needing a break from the rest.
Harry tried to get himself under control, but he was too excited. After all, it wasn't everyday that you were going to ask the man you loved to marry you. And it wasn't everyday - even by wizarding standards - that you could tell him you were pregnant and four months along at that.
He had spent most of the morning at various shops searching for the perfect ring, before finding one in a Muggle shop a couple blocks over from the Leaky Cauldron. A black onyx dominated the ring and lay in the middle of two much smaller diamonds. It was a ring very befitting Hogwarts' Potions master and Head of Slytherin. He had even had it engraved, paying no mind to the odd look the Muggle had given him at the saying.
Making his way through the dungeons, Harry let himself drift into a daydream about what their wedding might be like. Nothing like the grandiose affair Hermione and Ron had planned for their wedding three years ago, but it would rather be a small gathering of close friends and family. Harry would invite his friends as well as Sirius and Remus. His godfather had resigned himself to Harry's relationship with Severus more than two years ago, and while he may not be enthusiastic about the occasion, he would support Harry no matter what.
Harry had noticed, though, that he had received several strange looks as he had wandered about Diagon Alley. He had shaken it off, figuring that some reporter had decided to write something false about him in the hopes of breaking into the business. It had happened before, and Harry had prepared himself.
He was almost at the chambers he shared with Severus when he noticed the odd noises coming from inside. 'Did Severus make that potion that always make him swear again?' Harry wondered. The closer he got to the rooms, though, the more it didn't sound so much as swearing but grunts and screams.
"What in the world are you doing, Sev?" Harry mumbled as he opened the door.
Harry really wished he hadn't even come down here when he saw the source of the noise.
Severus' skin had a light sheen of sweat that glinted as the light hit it. Red scratches ran up and down his back, the fingertips that made them still griping his shoulders. The short fingernails dug in again as Severus shoved his hips into the person's below him.
"Oh, Severus," came a passion-filled voice below Harry's lover. He'd recognize that voice anywhere, but why here of all places would he hear it?
"Granger," was Severus' grunted reply as his face screwed up in orgasm.
Harry was numb as he watched all of this. Even so, a part of him found it curious to see what Severus looked like in the throes of passion when he wasn't underneath - or above - him. He hadn't known that Severus could look so... silly... as he pulled out of Hermione.
He waited for the two on the couch to notice him, but both of them fell into a light doze. As he did, the numbness wore off as anger settled in. How long had this been happening? Harry wondered if Ron knew what his wife was doing while he was at the Ministry working on the new Auror training courses Bill Weasley, as Head of Magical Defenses, had asked about before he started teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts in a couple of weeks.
Harry knew that if he let his anger out, he could tear down Hogwarts itself, so he took a couple of deep breaths to get himself under control long enough that he could get out here. Forcing himself past the entwined couple, he went into the bedroom and started packing. He wouldn't be able to stay here.
Setting into motion several spells to collect his belongings, which weren't much to begin with, Harry thought about all of whom he could go to. His mind went to Sirius and then stopped. Yes, that was where he would go, with a stop at Ron's office for a few minutes.
Trunk packed, Harry searched for some parchment. He may be crazy to leave a note for Severus, but he couldn't not do it after four years of being together. As he did, he noticed a crumpled up copy of The Daily Prophet laying on Severus' desk in the study. Curiosity briefly winning out over the need to get away, Harry flattened out the parchment.
Anything breakable in the study exploded.
Harry quickly reigned himself in and muttered a sleeping charm on the two in the other room just in case they had heard the noise. No, he didn't want a confrontation at the moment. It may be that he was running away to hide, but Harry didn't think that it would be good for the baby for him to let loose all of what he was feeling.
The baby. The thought stopped him in his tracks. Harry was torn between going out there and letting Severus know about the baby anyway and keeping the secret to himself. Then no one would know his shame in having a child with a man who cheated on him with one of his best friends.
Harry nodded. Yes, he would do that and no one would be the wiser.
Five minutes later, Harry was out the main doors and making his way to the apparition point. In his mind's eye, he could still see the ring box lying on top of his note and the paper, its big headline stating "Ginny Weasley-Creevey Pregnant with Harry Potter's Child."
Sirius lifted his head at the knock and looked at the clock. Amazed at how much time had passed and realizing that he had missed lunch, he stood from his seat at the kitchen table and made his way to the door. It was just him in the house, Remus having gone to a special teaching class offered by Beauxbatons University for the week though he would be returning much later this evening.
He opened the door to a sobbing Harry, his face tear-streaked and one eye rapidly swelling.
"Harry!" Sirius pulled the younger man into the house and his arms.
Harry's sobs grew louder as he buried his face in Sirius' neck. Thin arms slowly crept around his shoulders.
"I didn't do it," came the strangled voice below Sirius' ear.
"Do what, Harry?" Sirius asked as he rubbed his hands in a comforting manner along Harry's back.
"I couldn't have," was the reply.
Mentally sighing, Sirius knew that he would have to wait a little while before Harry could tell him, since it sounded as if the younger man was in shock. Well, whatever it was, Sirius would help his godson any way he could.
Remus had just put his key in the lock when the door was suddenly wrenched open. He was then faced with a rabid looking Sirius, the other man's eyes wild with fury and indignation.
"Siri?" Remus asked as Sirius pulled him into the house. He had just enough time to set his case down by the door before he was dragged into the living room, where he saw Harry sitting on the couch, eyes rimmed red and puffy from crying. "Harry? What's wrong?" he said as he went to engulf the younger man in his arms.
Harry responded by bursting out in tears, holding onto Remus with a tight grip.
"Did you see The Daily Prophet this morning?" Sirius ground out from behind clenched teeth.
Remus shook his head. "No. I figured I wouldn't read it until I got home."
"Good," whispered Harry from Remus' shoulder.
A strange calm swept over Remus. "Why do I suddenly get the feeling that whatever was in it isn't good?"
Sirius gave a dark chuckle. "It seems as if somebody's decided that it would be better to say they're pregnant with Harry's child than with some other poor sap and not their own husband."
Remus burst off the couch, Harry still clinging to him. "WHAT!? But Harry wouldn't...." He drifted off as Harry gave a watery hiccup and inched towards Sirius.
The other man opened his arms to Harry before nodding. "That isn't all."
Five minutes later, Remus was all for heading to Hogwarts with wand ready. For the briefest moments, he suddenly understood how Sirius had felt since he found out Harry was seeing Severus. He was still seething when he noticed Harry shifting uncomfortably between himself and Sirius.
"I..." Harry put his head down. "I didn't tell Sirius *everything* earlier. I... I wanted to tell you both together."
"Harry?" Sirius asked, putting his arm around the younger man's shoulders. "What is it?"
Remus swore that his eyes could have popped out of his head. And that wasn't anywhere near Sirius' reaction to that bit of news.
A forlorn look passed over Harry's face as he raised tear-filled green eyes to look at the other two. "I'm four months along."
Remus closed his eyes to let it sink in. Only the most powerful of wizards were able to carry a child, but it was still dangerous. In fact, it was very dangerous for both the wizard and baby, and both had only a forty percent chance of surviving.
A pregnant wizard was also incapable of fathering a child the entire time he was with child. Not that Remus had doubted Harry's story in the first place, but here was proof that they could take to Severus. He said so, but Harry shook his head.
"No. I don't want anyone to know. Ron didn't believe me, and thought I was making up what I saw about Hermione and Severus to cover it up." He pointed to the eye that was a spectacular shade of purple, his voice raw from his crying. "Hence the pop in the face."
Remus looked down and found that Harry's other hand was clenched tight. Neither that or the other one had any indication of his fighting back, so he figured that Harry was still too stunned from what he'd seen earlier to do anything about it.
He looked over Harry's head at Sirius. The pale blue eyes were trained on the man's godson, but Remus knew that he was worried about this entire thing. Sirius looked up, and he knew, just by the set of his mouth, that Sirius was going to do something. Whatever it was, though, Remus was going to go along with it.
Harry smiled as he watched his son play in the sandbox. The little boy was happy shoving his truck through the piles and through 'lakes' he had made in the sand. Shaggy, black hair partially covered eyes so dark a green they often appeared black in certain lights. They were one of two things Harry could see of Severus in the little boy.
"Alastair!" Both of them looked to the source of the shout and found Sirius waving his arms spastically, a happy grin on his face.
"Paddy!" Alastair shouted and, forgetting completely about his truck, ran to Sirius. The man scooped the little boy high into the air before settling him on one hip.
Harry smiled at the picture the two of them made. Sirius had fallen deeply in love with the child as soon as he held him the first time. Since then, he had spoiled the child, so much that at times both Harry and Remus had to forbid him to do anything more for a while.
He was glad that he had Sirius and Remus, though, for all the support they had given him through his pregnancy and difficult delivery of Alastair. The three of them had moved across the Atlantic to the States and had settled in a suburb of Detroit. They figured that if anyone wanted to find them, they would look in the wizarding populations of New York and LA, which were large. The advantage of living in Detroit was the easy access to Canada and the underground that existed in Windsor, just across the river. There they could find a mediwizard who would be able to help Harry without fear of being found out.
While some of the denizens of wizarding Windsor were on the shady side of the law, they were the nicest people Harry had ever met. They were the outlaws of several countries, including quite a few from Britain, having fled during Voldemort's first reign of terror. Indeed, the mediwizard who delivered Alastair was Madame Pomfrey's brother, who had come over here when he had fallen under suspicion for having healed a Death Eater and refusing to report him. The crazy part of it was that the Death Eater he was suspected of having helped was Severus, who had already been serving as spy for Albus for over a year. It was a good thing that Harry hadn't known that until after Alastair was born, because he wouldn't have been comfortable with that at all.
Harry stood and slowly followed Sirius and Alastair made their way over to the swings, having collected the few toys the little boy had insisted on bringing to the park. Walking was still painful after almost five years. Dr Addison had had to perform an emergency caesarean, and while Harry was recovering, he had started to bleed internally. They had caught it, but not before some muscle damage had set in to his left leg. Still, he hadn't cared at that time - and even now - as long as Alastair was healthy.
Sirius smiled at Harry when he finally got to where the older man was pushing Alastair in the specially designed seat for smaller children. The child was squealing happily and urging Paddy to push harder.
The smile made Harry think about the smile Sirius had thrown him this morning as he had climbed out of bed to catch Alastair before he got into trouble. He, Harry, and Remus had still been in their big bed talking quietly when they all heard the sounds of Alastair awake and ready to terrorize the three of them for the day. Sirius had been the one to run after the giggling little boy, both of them going past the open door through which Harry and Remus, curled up around each other, had watched.
It still amazed him just how welcome he had been into Remus and Sirius' relationship. He hadn't given much thought to their relationship during his pregnancy. Instead, he had been thrown through a tumult of emotions as the pregnancy advanced. Then had come the long road to total recovery, or as far as he would ever get on it.
Alastair was almost a year when he noticed the looks that both Sirius and Remus were throwing at him. Then followed a month of feeling awkward around the two men, until that night. The night when he'd awakened from a nightmare about the last battle, when Remus had been hit by that curse, and had crawled into bed with the other two. Harry had woken up the next morning to soft, feathery kisses along his brow and a hand rubbing a soft path up and down his arm. Still half-asleep, Harry had turned to look at first Sirius, then Remus. Both of them had worn expressions Harry hadn't seen in a long time - that he was desirable, that he was loved sexually.
The three of them had made love in the quiet of the morning, using the early hours well before Alastair would awaken. It had hurt when Sirius entered him, Harry not having had any form of sexual interaction in almost two years. But then Remus had kissed him gently, his tongue matching the slow rhythm of Sirius' hips, and Harry forgot all about the pain and broken promises Severus had uttered during sex.
A soft peck to his lips woke him from his reverie. Opening his eyes, he found himself looking at a pair of amber ones.
"Remus," Harry murmured as he inhaled Remus' musky scent as the older man leaned in to give him another quick kiss. He pulled back and Harry looked around, noticing that the sun was setting and the park was deserted but for the four of them.
Faint lines crinkled around the golden colored eyes. They were nowhere near what they had been when Harry had first met Remus ten years ago. The curse that Remus had been hit with had been intended for Harry in an attempt to eliminate Voldemort's number one enemy for once and for all. Instead, Remus had noticed what was happening behind Harry as he battled against the Dark-Lord-for-the-Second-Time-wannabe. The curse had taken around twenty years off of Remus' life, leaving him little more than a year older than Harry. Sirius hadn't minded the difference in his lover, and had instead focused on making sure that he was recovered before they disappeared for a month. Harry had smirked knowingly when the two had finally shown up at the grand ceremony, when the awards were given out and they were all forced to attend by Albus.
A cool finger ran down Harry's scar.
"You shouldn't think so hard." The finger moved to the faint laugh lines forming around Harry's eyes. "It causes wrinkles."
Harry laughed and looked to see if Sirius had heard. The other man had taken great glee when he had finally noticed he had wrinkles in the crease of his eyes. Twelve years of Azkaban had meant twelve years of heart-wrenching sadness. It had taken another two years before he could laugh again, so now when any more of the lines appeared, Sirius threw a small celebration, which Alastair found funny, even as Remus and Harry shook their heads in exasperation.
He smiled at Remus as the other man sat beside Harry, wrapping an arm around his shoulders. Harry leaned over slightly and put his head on Remus' shoulder, content in watching Sirius and Alastair run around, content in being here with his family.
Alastair was awed at the sight of the castle as it shimmered in the summer sun. His fathers had gone to school here? It's amazing, he thought. Next to him, Papa shifted in his seat as the carriage carried them to the school. Then he remembered why they were coming here.
Papa and Remy-pa were here to ask the headmaster if they could bring Paddy to rest. A tear tried to fight its way from behind Alastair's tightly closed eyelids. It had been two months, but it felt like it was two minutes ago. He had been waiting at school for Sirius to pick him up when his teacher had asked him to come with her and that they needed to go to the hospital. Alastair had started to panic the closer they got, and when he arrived, he had found two of his three papas hugging each other close and crying. He had started crying in reaction, and then he found himself pulled between the two of them. Both men had held him close as they told him that Paddy had been hit by a car while on his motorcycle, and that, while the doctors had tried their hardest to save him, they couldn't.
Now they were here where all three had gone to school, hoping that they could spread some of Paddy's ashes in the place where he had met some of his best friends. Alastair had seen just how torn up his papas had been, and how hard it had been for them to make this trip. He knew they weren't telling him something - and that it was big - but he could wait for their explanation. He was more concerned about the well being of his papas.
At ten, Alastair knew he was more mature than the other boys in his class. Remy-pa had said that it was because Alastair knew what his Papa felt, but Paddy had told him that it was because he was special. But Papa had said that sometimes a boy would age faster than everyone else and he should use that to his advantage.
The carriage finally stopped, and Alastair waited until Papa and Remy-pa got out before stepping out. Adjusting the thin, wire-framed glasses on his nose, his jaw dropped at the tremendous size of Hogwarts. He hadn't realized it was so huge!
The three of them entered the doors, no one appearing on the other side to let them in. Harry knew that the castle sensed they were here in a special mission and didn't wish to meet up with anybody but the person they were seeking. He knew that Albus lived at the school year round, his family having been grown for decades. A few of the other teachers also resided here during the summer - Severus had been one of them.
Harry shook his head. He wasn't going to even think of Severus other than that.
Instead, he reached over and grabbed Remus' cool hand. The other man tightened his hand slightly in support before relaxing his grip into a reassuring one. Their hands stayed clasped together all through the halls on the way up to the headmaster's office.
The gargoyle looked at them for a second before moving to the side, no password needed. Harry wasn't sure what to make of it, but steeled himself for a variety of reactions that the old man could give.
Behind him, he heard Alastair gasp out a "cool!" as the stairs twisted their way to the office at the top. Once they stopped, Harry stepped into the circular office and looked around for Albus.
What he found surprised and shocked him.
Albus looked like he had aged fifty years in the eleven Harry and Remus had been gone. The blue eyes that reminded him so much of Sirius no longer twinkled.
"Harry. Remus." The voice was so old sounding, having a raspy quality to it, as if Albus had a hard time talking anymore. He turned his eyes to Alastair. "And son."
"Alastair," Harry stated as he took a seat without an offer. "We are here to do something, and we don't need your permission to do it."
The castle gave a pulse that seemed to take Albus by surprise. Still, the older man nodded, and Harry relaxed.
Remus sank into the hot water, grateful for the soothing sensation. He brought water up to his face, hoping to relieve the hot, prickly feeling along his skin. It had been harder than he thought to spread Sirius' ashes. Two months may have passed, but it was so hard to feel him gone.
They had been a part of each other for almost two decades, even though a full one lay in between them.
He knew that Harry had spoken to the castle when they had arrived, feeling it along the bond between them. Even if he hadn't, nine years had taught him how to read Harry when he was quiet. Harry's connection with the castle reached back to his sixth year, when Voldemort had attempted to attack during the Christmas holidays, when most of the school had gone home. Harry had reached out to the castle to help protect everyone while he figured out a way to send Voldemort packing.
Through their bond, Remus could feel the castle's reaction to Harry being back. It was happy he was back, but Remus knew that Harry felt the same way. It had been his first true home, even though he had made one with Remus and Sirius.
Remus sighed. It felt so strange not to have Sirius there. The other man would have been in and out of the bath a dozen times, trying to sneak a look at Remus as he lay in the tub. A sob erupted out of nowhere as he tried not to think about Sirius.
It wasn't supposed to happen this way, Remus thought as he slammed his fist into the water.
Sirius had taken that route every day for all the time that Alastair had gone to school. But that day, some drunk had decided that it would be a good road to drive down - drunk at three in the afternoon. Sirius hadn't stood a chance against the truck, and had slid with the bike underneath it, before being crushed by one of the back tires.
A warm hand brushed the hair on his forehead back as he felt Harry climb into the tub and hug him.
"I miss him so much," Remus cried raggedly through a sob.
"Me, too," whispered Harry.
Remus could feel hot tears drip onto his neck as he wrapped his arms around Harry's still clothed back. He held onto Harry, wanting to promise to stay forever, but knew that he couldn't.
Sirius had promised the same thing.
Harry poured through the back issues of The Daily Prophet. He hadn't wanted to ask Albus what had happened while they were gone, so he had gone to the deserted library to find out. So far, he had found out that Colin had divorced Ginny about a month after the first newspaper article had come out. He had also taken the time to read that first article again, and saw that Charlotte Gooding, a Slytherin in Ginny's year at Hogwarts, wrote the byline. Harry knew that the two had been friends from about the time Harry had started seeing Severus late in his sixth year. He had thought it great that Ginny had been able to make some friends outside of Gryffindor, even though Ron hadn't been happy it was with a Slytherin.
Three months after Harry, Remus, and Sirius had left England, there was brief statement in the back of the Prophet that Mr Ron and Mrs Hermione Granger Weasley had divorced. He felt slightly vindicated that Hermione'd had her comeuppance, even if it still rankled just the tiniest bit that Ron hadn't believed him when Harry told him.
Five months after that, The Daily Prophet had run a spread over Ginny giving birth to a daughter with wild, black hair and blue eyes. Not surprising. But then, three months later, the baby still had blue eyes. At that time, Mundungus Fletcher, the man that had helped them escape England, had demanded that a paternity test be performed. In public. Using the spell that should have been cast at the hospital that filled out the birth certificate.
The little girl had been given the test by none other than Albus Dumbledore in the Ministry of Magic building at a large press conference. The picture of before the test showed a nervous Ginny wringing her hands, and Harry had to suppress a snicker (not that it would have been noticed in the lonely library). The 'after' picture showed Ginny trying to make a run for Charlotte Gooding, forgetting about the daughter that lay cooing on the table in front of Albus. Ginny had dove at her friend, screaming that it was her fault that she didn't get Harry.
The baby, named Harriet after her 'father,' was the daughter of Virginia Weasley (ex-Creevey) and Tom Marvolo Riddle.
The scandal that arose from it forced a big movement within the Ministry when it was revealed that several of its members had been Voldemort sympathizers, and had had Charlotte rope Ginny into bearing their Lord's child by way of a few frozen things of Voldemort's. How strange it was that they had used a Muggle way of preserving sperm to impregnate the one person that had known Voldemort more intimately than Harry himself. Of course, Ginny hadn't known it was Tom Riddle's sperm, but had been told it was Harry's.
Harry finally set the parchment aside and rolled his head to the side, relieved as he felt the tension ease in his neck. He surveyed the large pile that he had now gone through. He was to the point where Alastair had just turned seven when he knew that Remus was hovering just behind him.
"It's time for tea, Harry," Remus said, quietly. "Did you want some?"
He nodded, glad for the break and the chance to sit with Remus. In the five days they had been here at Hogwarts, Alastair had found that tea was the perfect time for flying with Madam Hooch, who had returned to the school a day after Harry and Remus had. The flying instructor had been happy to meet the young boy and give him instructions, as well as taking him down to the kitchens for a meal when they were done.
Back at their rooms, Remus poured both of them some tea as Harry scooped some shepherd's pie on his plate. "I think this is the only thing I missed about England," he stated after his first forkful. He savored the taste on his tongue, relishing in what had been his favorite dish before discovering funnel cakes at a local fair.
The castle seemed to sigh, and Harry had to laugh. "I said England, not Scotland."
Remus was shaking his head when Harry looked at him, throwing an unrepentant grin at the other man.
"So, did you find anything on Severus?" Remus finally asked. The table had been cleared by the house elves over an hour ago, and the two of them had been sitting on the couch together, content just to be next to each other.
Harry shook his head. "Ron got married about six years ago, to Ana Malfoy."
Remus laughed at the irony of it all. "You mean he spent all those years hating Draco Malfoy and ends up marrying his baby sister?"
Harry nodded before sobering slightly. "Hermione married some Muggle eight years ago. It was just a little snippet. But nothing about Severus."
A cough interrupted them, and the two looked over at the north wall. They were both were startled when they noticed the new addition to one of the pictures that hung on that wall.
"Minerva?" Remus asked, incrediously.
The former Head of Gryffindor nodded her head. "Yes, Remus, Harry. The only reason why I had a portrait done is because Albus insisted." She paused briefly to mutter under her breath, of which Harry only caught the words "idiot" and "Albus," but it was enough for him to guess she was cursing the headmaster.
"About Severus..." Minerva paused again, but was quiet this time. "You obviously hadn't gotten as far as I thought if you don't know...."
"Know what?" Harry asked.
"He was killed in a potions accident two years ago," the staunch Gryffindor said in a mournful tone of voice. "One of the seventh years decided he would make a new potion and added the wrong ingredient. Severus, the boy, and three others were killed in the resulting explosion.
He looked at his former head of house.
"He's here - as a ghost. He still wanders about. I think he knew when you came."
Harry nodded. He had felt something off when he had stepped into the castle, but had dismissed it due to the circumstances in which he had arrived. Now that he thought about it, he noticed that he hadn't felt any of the ghosts. They may have known that it hadn't been the best time for them to meet.
"He's waiting to talk to me before he can move on," Harry said in sudden realization.
Minerva nodded as Harry leaned into Remus, suddenly needing the comfort he could give.
Harry stared at the ghost.
Severus had aged greatly before his death, even though his translucent state hid a lot of it. Still, Harry wondered just what had put such devastating lines on the man's face.
The ghost nodded. "Harry..." He reached out a pale hand and put it down just before touching Harry. "I need to say I'm sorry."
Harry's throat tightened suddenly. "I know," he choked out.
"I should have had more faith in you," Severus said in a tight voice. His face was filled with grief and love. "It wasn't until you'd been gone a month before I realized..."
Severus lifted his other hand. Harry saw his ring still on one of the fingers and couldn't hold back a couple of tears. The ghost must have noticed this, because he said, "I never took it off after that."
"Why I did it? or why Granger? It was only that time."
Harry nodded in acceptance.
"I had to hurt you like you'd hurt me - " Harry opened his mouth to retort the statement, but Severus continued - "and Granger was suddenly at the door wanting to talk to you. I still don't know what all happened, but the next think I know is I'm staring at the ring and your note."
Harry pondered what he should ask for a second. "What about Hermione?"
"You know that Weasley and Granger divorced?"
"Granger came back just after it was finalized and tried to start something. But I couldn't... I was hoping that I could still find you and at least have you forgive me if you wouldn't come back. Then she started living in the Muggle world. The last I heard was that she got married to some doctor because she was pregnant."
He was surprised at Hermione's behavior. Harry would never have suspected her of acting in behavior of this kind. He was glad, though, that Severus hadn't.... He wasn't sure of what, but knowing that Severus had at least wanted forgiveness even then soothed his wounded memories.
They both were silent for a long moment.
"Is Alastair mine?" Severus finally asked, his voice so quiet Harry could barely hear him.
He nodded. "Yes. He'll be an only child. I... miscarried a couple of times since then. He... Alastair's birth taxed my body too much. The mediwizard said I shouldn't try it any more."
"Remus?" Severus inquired.
"Him and Sirius," Harry answered.
Severus was quiet for a couple of seconds. "I'm sorry about Black. I may not have liked him, but I understand."
Harry closed his eyes as another tear ran down his cheek and nodded.
"Go back to him," Severus suddenly said.
Harry's eyes opened to discover that Severus' form was fading. "Severus?"
"He's looking for you. He and Alastair." Severus' eyes were almost black even in the middle of his silver-hued face. "I still love you, Harry. I always will. I'm sorry."
"I love you, Sev," Harry said as a sob ripped through his chest.
Severus nodded, his face sad. "You love Remus now. Go and be with him." With that, his form disappeared from view, and Harry couldn't feel him anymore.
He turned around and headed down the corridor, desperate to find Remus. It still hurt, but he wouldn't ever go back to what it had been before if given the chance.
Harry found his small family in the entrance hall, where Remus engulfed him in his arms. Alastair stood awkwardly off to one side before Harry pulled him into the embrace.
Near the ceiling, a glint of silver flashed twice before fading.