Disclaimer:  JK Rowling owns all recognizable characters and places.  I own Serena.

Author's note:  Ok.  I lied.  That wasn't the end.  This bit haunted me all day.  And so no one gets mad, I may have taken a liberty with lycanthropy.  But there are a few different theories about that.  So maybe I didn't.

Epilogue

            In the bedroom they shared at Twelve Grimmauld place, Remus snuck up behind his wife of three months.  He slid his arms around her waist, pulling her back against him.  "Morning, Mrs. Lupin," he said softly, pressing a kiss against her hair.

            Serena placed her hands over his, leaning into him.  She let out a small sigh.  "Hi."

            When she said no more, and didn't move, he gave her a light squeeze.  "Something wrong?"

            She shook her head.  "Wrong?  No, no, not at all."

            There was something in her voice that gave him pause.  He lifted his hands to her shoulders and turned her around.  "Serena?"

            She didn't meet his gaze.  He ducked down a little to catch her eye.  "What is it, love?"

            She didn't respond, just moved closer, and wrapped her arms around his waist, tucking her head under his chin.

            Remus took a deep breath, inhaling her unique scent.  Something was wrong, he could tell.

            Something…

            He sniffed her again.  There was something about her scent that was peculiar.

            "Serena?"  With one hand, he gently lifted her chin, forcing her to look at him.  "What is going on?  You smell… different."

            She gave him a tremulous smile.  "I should have known you'd smell it."

            "What?"

            She took a deep breath.  "Remus.  I'm pregnant."

He gaped at her.  "You're what?"

Her smile fell away.  "Pregnant."  She whispered.

He released her abruptly, pacing away from her.  "How did this happen?"  He asked.

"You know very well how it happened, Remus.  We've only been going at it like rabbits."  Her voice had become cool.

He turned to face her, thrusting his hands through his hair.  "That's not what I meant and you know it."

Uncharacteristically, her eyes filled with tears.  "I don't know anything of the sort, Remus.  All I know is I thought you'd be pleased.  Apparently, I was wrong.

He shook his head, scrubbing his hands over his face.  "I…"  He hesitated, his eyes darting to the door.  "I need to think."  He finished weakly, striding to the door and wrenching it open.

***

Some time later, he was in the overgrown garden behind the house, sitting among the weeds, staring blankly into the distance.

He had said he needed to think, but found that his mind was empty.

A baby.

His baby.

He couldn't seem to get his brain wrapped around that.

He was so immersed in his thoughts; he didn't notice the three teenagers approaching him until they were right beside him.  Harry, Hermione, and Ron were visiting the Order headquarters on Christmas break, just as he and Serena were. 

"Hey, Remus."  Harry greeted with a smile.

Remus glanced at the teens.  "Hello.'

Hermione tilted her head to one side and studied him.  "Are you ok, Professor?  You've been out here for a while."  Hermione still insisted on using his proper title, no matter how many times he told her she didn't have to.

He nodded slowly.  "I'm fine."

Harry sat down next to him.  "You look worried."

            Ron and Hermione agreed as they sat on Remus' other side. 

            Remus glanced from one young face to another.  "Did someone send you out here to check up on me?"

            Ron nodded.  "My Mum talked to Serena and told us to come out here."

            Remus sighed.  "So Molly must know."

            "Know what?"  Harry asked, his green eyes concerned.  "Is Serena ok?"  Harry had come to think of her as a kind of aunt.

            Remus hesitated.  "She's… well, she's pregnant."  He said finally.

            Hermione gasped.  "That's wonderful!"

            Harry remained silent, watching Remus with keen eyes.

            "Will the baby be a werewolf, d'you think?"  Ron asked.  He yelped when Hermione elbowed him in the ribs.  "What?"  He glared at her.

            "Honestly, Ron."  Hermione said, exasperated.

            Remus looked down at his hands, which were systematically tearing up bits of grass.  "I don't know."

            "That's what you're worried about isn't it?"  Harry asked softly.

            Remus nodded.  "I can't curse anyone with that kind of existence.  Especially a child.  Above all, my own child."

            Hermione looked thoughtful.  "But, Professor Lupin, lycanthropy can only be passed on through a bite.  There has never been a case otherwise, especially none by birth.  I looked it up."

            Remus smiled faintly.  "You looked it up?"

            Ron snickered, and Hermione blushed.  "I was curious."

            "Did you talk to Serena about that?"  Harry questioned.

            Remus looked embarrassed.  "Uh, no.  Not exactly.  I panicked.  I didn't really say anything."

            Hermione shook her head.  "Oh, Professor."

            He sighed.  "I know.  I'm a bloody idiot."  He thrust his hands through his mussed hair, as he had a thousand times already.  "She must hate me right now."

            "You need to go talk to her."  Hermione told him.

            Remus looked over his shoulder at the house.  "I don't think she'll want to see me right now."  She might hex him.  Not that he didn't deserve it, but he would rather avoid it.

            "You have to take that chance."  Hermione told him sternly.  Then she smiled at him.  "You're going to be a great father."

            A bit surprised and embarrassed by the praise, Remus thanked her.  She and Ron got up and walked away, leaving Remus and Harry alone.

            They sat in silence for a while, both absorbed in their own thoughts.  Finally, Remus glanced at Harry.  "So what do you think, Harry?"

            "About the baby?"  Harry asked.  "I think Hermione's right.  I think you'll be a great dad."

            Remus was touched.  "So how would you feel about being the baby's godfather?"  It was a spur of the moment decision, but Remus knew it was right, and didn't think Serena would argue.

            Harry's eyes widened, and a hesitant grin started to spread across his face.  "Really?"

            Remus put his arm around the young man's shoulders.  "I daresay that you'll probably be more of a big brother than a godfather, and a terrible influence at that, but yes, really."

            "Serena won't mind?" 

            "I think Serena will be delighted.  I'm the one she thinks is a stupid git.  Not you."

            Harry's face lit with pleasure.  "I would love it."

            Remus gave him a quick squeeze, then let go.  "Right then.  I suppose I'd better go face the music."

            He stood and headed back to the house, his steps suddenly buoyant.  They were going to have a baby.  Fierce joy filled him and he quickened his pace.

            At the door to his and Serena's room, he paused, wondering if he should be prepared for some sort of magical attack.  She did have a nasty temper at times.  Squaring his shoulders, he opened the door slowly, peering around it.

            Serena was sitting in the rocking chair by the window, head bowed, her hands resting on her still flat stomach. 

            He entered the room and shut the door quietly behind him.  "Serena?"

            She lifted her head, her sad eyes meeting his.

            He crossed the room and dropped to his knees by her feet.  "Serena, I am so sorry."

            "So am I."  She replied.

            He shook his head.  "No.  You have absolutely nothing to be sorry for.  I'm the one who behaved like an idiot."

            "I thought you'd be happy."  She whispered.

            He reached up, framing her face with his hands.  "It's just… you caught me by surprise.  I never thought…"

            "I know we never talked about having children.  But, Remus, I want nothing more than to have your child."

            He felt as though he couldn't breathe from the wealth of emotions that welled up at her words.  He let his hands fall to her knees, dropping his head on top of them.

            "You're not angry, are you?"  She asked carefully.

            He lifted his head, his lean face somber.  "Angry?  No."  He began to smile.  "I'm terrified.  And overwhelmed.  But I'm also ecstatic."

            Her lips curved up cautiously.  "Really?"

            "Really.  Serena, words can't even come close to describing how I feel right now."  He rose up to press a fervent kiss to her lips.  "I love you."  He declared vehemently.  Then he ducked down to kiss her stomach, just above her hands.  "And the baby."

            When he sat up again, Serena slid off the chair onto his lap, wrapping her arms around his neck. 

            "I love you."  She said gently.  "And I think you're going to be a terrific father."

            He chuckled.  "That seems to be the common consensus around here."  At her puzzled look, he explained.  "Both Hermione and Harry said the same thing."

            "You told them?"

            He nodded.  "Molly sent them out to tell me what a git I was."

            Serena's smile broadened.  "Did Hermione lecture you?"

            "A bit.  She made me realize that my fears were unfounded."

            Serena let out a bit of a laugh.  "Remus, the baby isn't a werewolf."

            "How do you know?"

            She shook her head.  "I just do."

            He didn't question that.  Her abilities had a scope that both amazed and frightened him at times.  He slid his arms around her waist, holding her in place.  "I asked Harry to be the baby's godfather."

            "I was hoping you would."  She responded.  "Actually, I was thinking we could ask all three of them; Harry, Ron and Hermione to be the baby's godparents."

            "I think that's a wonderful idea."  He said.  "But let's do that later."  His hazel eyes gleamed wickedly.  "I believe I have some making up to do."