Summary: Lupin's surveillance is foiled and Tonks is in danger. Last chapter.


Gilderoy Lockhart's inane smile was gleaming with ferocity as the man-sized volume rested on a small staging area in the small auditorium at Flourish and Blott's. The bright gas lights of the chandelier above it provided the only illumination to the small room. The glare from the life-sized bookcover was so unbearable that Lupin was actually considering transforming a toothpick he'd found in his pocket into muggle sunglasses in spite of the darker seating area.

Arthur and the boys were saying their farewells and trying not to visibly cringe as they passed by the picture of Lockhart. Molly appeared to have forgotten all about the mission as a limpid smile graced her matronly face. Ginny and Tonks sat by Molly in the last row, looking like two teenagers. Tonks was seated at the edge of a row to facilitate the trap for the abductors.

"Ladies, ladies, please calm down. Our preview of the compiled works of Gilderoy Lockhart will begin shortly as we show you the illustrations, now masterfully reworked so that the poor man doesn't have to loose his breath as he jumps from picture to picture. We'd also like to remind you that the presentation book, with life-sized illustrations of Gilderoy Lockhart, will be auctioned at the end of our preview. All proceeds from the auction will go to support St. Mungo's Spell Damage Ward."

The Lockhart on the book cover gave a quick wink to his audience as several women peeped on about his generosity. Lupin looked quickly at Tonks to see whether she was swooning as badly as the other women, but Tonks returned a sideward glance and made a quick clawing motion with her hand.

Lupin smiled and began imagining Snuffles and the Werewolf within him having a grand time gnawing the presentation book to pieces. He actually heard a snarl behind him and turned quickly, but the source had been some volumes of the Monster Book of Monsters that were being stored against a wall. Apparently they wanted a piece of Lockhart, too.

Mad-Eye Moody had allegedly departed to the Ministry Offices to report the incident at the Apothecary; however, the rotund witch sitting in front of Molly and her "girls" had a suspicious lock of blonde hair that covered one of her eyes.

Lupin caught Tonks' gaze again and could practically read her thoughts as an eyebrow quirked. At least he, Lupin, had not been forced to dress in drag. He resolved to keep his mustache intact for his duration of service to the Order. Perhaps he should grow a beard?

Lupin's musings were interrupted when he caught sight of Fester coming in through the back door with three companions. The reinforcements were a bit of a surprise given that Voldemort seemed to want things done quietly.

He surveyed the crowd closely again as three women took their seats. One of them had the distinctively hooked nose of Faust. Six to help with the abduction of one muggle-born witch? They should have had the Weasley men stay.

But Lupin had confidence that between himself, Tonks and Mad-Eye, the situation would be under control. Until he saw the last woman making her grand entrance: Andromeda Tonks!

Lupin cast a glance at Tonks who was trying not to stare in horror as her mother made her way toward Lupin.

"Didn't last the day? Or did you abandon my daughter to come out to ogle women?" asked a very incensed Andromeda.

"Andromeda, I can assure you," said Lupin as he was straining around her to see what Fester was doing, "that Tonks and I have an understanding. Now please go--"

Before he could finish, the lights in the chandelier went out. He heard a squeal from Andromeda and actually sent a silencing spell her way. The sea of witches sat in stunned silence until Lupin said, "Lumos."

At that point wands were lighting up like little fireflies suddenly converging on a summer day. Molly was hovering over Ginny with her wand raised high; her assignment was to make sure Ginny was out of harms way. Tonks as the Hermione decoy was being raised completely off her feet by Faust and the henchmen--or were they really women?--by his side.

Moody turned and was immediately stupefied by Fester, only to be stunned by Lupin in turn. His henchmen made a dash for Faust as they cast repelling spells at Lupin. One more went down, but at this point Moody was shaking off the stunning spell.

In a move that was either sheer genius or the result of his addled thoughts, Moody unleashed an unexpected force. His wand waved toward the Monster Book of Monsters and released them.

The snarling books were eager for their freedom and bounced toward Faust. But then the store clerks at Flourish and Blott's had recovered sufficiently to relight the chandelier. The Monster Books seemed to give a howl as they changed direction and charged through the crowd of squealing witches toward the giant book of Lockhart.

Moody finally gained enough wits about him to realize he had forgotten to send a controlling spell at the books. His wand was waving madly as he attempted to rein in the Monster Books.

But now some of the witches thought this blonde madwoman was trying to steal the Lockhart presentation book for herself. Never had Moody faced such fury! Even Andromeda joined the fray, although all one could here from her was, "Mm hmm hmmm mhm!"

In the distraction, Tonks managed to get her wand out to stun one of her abductors while Molly immobilized the one nearest her and Ginny. Unfortunately, Faust lost no time knocking Tonks unconscious while Lupin was trying make his way closer to the villains. Lupin managed to get the last henchman down, but Faust was now dragging Tonks to the fireplace.

Lupin saw them disappear in frustration. He took one look to Moody to find him still fighting off the horde of irate witches. High pitched squeals could be heard coming from Lockhart's pictures in the presentation book as the Monster Book of Monsters converged on their prey with gleeful snarls.

"Tell Moody I've gone after Tonks," said Lupin as he swept by Molly and Ginny.

Lupin closed his eyes and concentrated as he remembered the spell he had been taught as an auror. He smiled in satisfaction as he caught the lingering echo of Faust's destination: the candle shop in Knockturn Alley.

The Order kept its members supplied with floo powder, so Lupin tore open a packet he had in his pocket and voiced his destination. His one comforting thought was that at least the real Hermione was safe.

- - - - - - - - -

Severus Snape stepped out of the fireplace with Hermione Granger right behind him. She was surprised to see an old man snoring in an armchair. She looked around the poor, but comfortable, sitting room and said, "I hope I won't get in the way. The house looks small."

Snape didn't turn back to look at her, but ignored the sleeping man and kept walking forward. "This is just a stop along the way. Stay close."

"But, this is a home invasion. How can you--"

"Mortimer Walker is a squib, Miss Granger. Now be quiet so that we can proceed."

Hermione hurried to keep up with the dark form in front of her as he walked outside and down the street, but Snape soon stopped and pulled a note from his pocket. "Read this and remember it."

"Oh!" Hermione was well read in the descriptions of the magical world, but new experiences never failed to enthrall her as number twelve Grimmauld Place seemed to squeeze out between the houses.

She was about to ask a question when Snape said, "Keep quiet and don't touch anything."

But his warning made no difference. Although Hermione was biting her lip and moving through the doorway as carefully as possible, the ranting was immediate.


"Where is that fool when you need him," muttered Snape under his breath. Then Hermione's screams added to the commotion.

"Get away!" she was screaming as a troll foot umbrella stand began stomping around her body.

"Immobilis." Snape turned to Hermione and said, "Do be quiet."

He walked briskly to the portrait and drew the curtains in one strong tug.

"Uh, who? Why are you glaring at me? I like house elves," said Hermione. Snape turned to find her face to face with Kreacher who was standing atop the stairs.

"Mistress is right to be upset. Her noble house is nothing but a rubbish bin for the trash you're bringing in," muttered the old house elf.

"Where is Sirius Black?" asked Snape. But the house elf ignored him completely and merely walked off muttering to himself.

"Mm mm MMMM."

Snape turned to Hermione again to find an old foxtail scarf that was hanging on one of the hooks in the hallway was trying to strangle her.

"Can't you stay out of trouble for one moment?" queried Snape as he transformed the deadly scarf into a lump of slimy, green goo.

"My hair," wailed Hermione in distress. Really, Snape didn't have to turn the scarf into jelly.

"Showing a bit of vanity?" asked Snape. "How out of character."

"I'm not vain, in fact, I'm sure I can create the right potion to clean my hair properly," said Hermione with just the barest flicker to his own hair as she wiped the goo from her face.

"Get down those stairs," muttered Snape. The kitchen was likely to be the only place the girl would be safe until Sirius decided to make an appearance. Where was that fool?

Hermione entered the kitchen and breathed a sigh of relief at not being attacked. She looked around in curiosity.

"Stay here until I find Black," said Snape.

"Black? Sirius Black? He's here?" Hermione had a smile of anticipation that made Snape sneer.

"If you're lucky you might find ingredients for the potion you need on the top shelf. Whatever you do, don't venture out of this room."

Snape left in a huff and Hermione released a sigh. She wished it had been Professor Lupin with her instead of Snape. She set out her ingredients but became alarmed again when she heard several thuds against the kitchen door. She found a rolling pin and stood near the doorway until it opened quickly and she saw a dark form.

"Don't you dare," came the quiet voice.

Hermione stopped in mid-bludger as she realized Snape was back. "Sorry, I heard thudding noises."

Hermione was peering around Snape when a dismembered dragon claw began to make its way to the doorsill. At Hermione's gasp, he turned quickly and transformed the claw into a beetle.

It made a satisfying crunch when Hermione stepped on it. She asked, "Where's Sirius?"

"That's what I'd like to know." Snape's hand tightened around his wand. Under his breath he muttered, "I should have listened to Sibyll."

"What was that?" asked Hermione.

"This should have been simple. I knew I should have traded places with Lupin," Snape replied. He looked at Hermione and with as much resentment as he could force into his voice said, "Stay here."

Snape took his position to guard the door to the kitchen. No one in the Order had realized the girl would be in such jeopardy in the ancient and noble house of Black. If only the heir of the house were around to help offset the attacks. He lifted his wand as another artifact made its way toward the kitchen and wondered when the Weasleys would be returning. The man sneered. How typical. Leave the dirty work to Snape. It was going to be a long day.

- - - - - - -

Snuffles was moving stealthily through Knockturn Alley and was coming round a corner by the poisonous candle shop. He saw the owl drop the scroll toward him and grabbed it quickly in his jaws. Anyone looking would merely see a dog happily tearing at a parchment, but as an animagus, this dog could read.

Snuffles used his nose to unroll the scroll sent by his beloved Cousin Andromeda while his paws held down the edge. His brows puckered into a frown at the details provided therein. The note ended with the words that would fuel his worries. " as you can see, like mother, like daughter."

Snuffles then diverted himself by chewing the parchment to shreds, but he looked up as he noticed a commotion. A man was coming out of the shop dragging a groggy young girl behind him. Snuffles watched as the man opened an apple-shaped vial and poured the contents down her throat. The body went limp.

As the man picked up the girl, Snuffles immediately recognized her. Hermione! No, Tonks. Even now the brown hair was getting shorter and darker. His cousin was being manhandled by--WHERE THE HELL WERE LUPIN AND MOODY!

The dog snarled and darted toward Faust. This was the reason he was needed on active duty for the Order, he thought as he leapt onto the man.

But Faust had turned his wand on the dog and repelled him. The dog slammed against the wall of the adjoining building and shook himself. Faust lifted his wand again to kill the dog.

"Stupefy!" Lupin threw the spell from a distance, but his target was clear.

Faust fell to the ground unconscious, but Sirius transformed from Snuffles in time to catch Tonks before she collided with the pavement.

"What the hell are you doing here!" hissed Lupin as he dragged them into the alley.

"What the hell are you doing here late!" replied Sirius.

"Turn back to Snuffles, now!" Lupin took Tonks in his arms and glared at his friend.

"Hmph." Sirius transformed into Snuffles while Lupin kept an eye out. Snuffles sat on his haunches before Lupin, but gave a haughty tilt to his nose.

"Do you know what could happen if someone saw you just now? Or must I remind you that the Dementor's kiss awaits you?" Lupin didn't know what was upsetting him more, Tonks being unconscious or Sirius gallivanting around Knockturn Alley.


"Fine, that's what I thought you'd say," said Lupin. He looked at Tonks and shook his head saying, "What did Faust do to you?"

"He gave her a potion," said Sirius as he quickly assumed human form again. But he groaned in frustration when Lupin pointed a long finger at him and immediately resumed his Snuffles form.

Lupin bent with Tonks now on his lap as he began to go through Faust's pockets and soon found the apple-shaped bottle. "I'm taking Tonks to St. Mungo's."

Snuffles whimpered as Lupin stood.

"No, you can't go. I'll contact the auror's office to send someone to collect Faust; he'll be out for a while." Lupin reached out to scratch Snuffles on behind his ears. "Go home, Snuffles. I'll take care of Tonks."

- - - - - - - - - - -

"St. Mungo's, third floor, potions and plant-poisoning ward."

Lupin stepped out of the fireplace and into the ward with the patient and the potions bottle he had found on Faust. Tonks had returned completely to her true form now and she seemed quite pale.

The healer at the desk looked up at Lupin as if surprised to have a patient. The ginger-haired woman said, "Oh, oh, my first solo! I'm Caprice Hartly. Now what have we here?"

Healer Hartly surveyed the tall, shabby-looking man holding the beautiful young woman. The scars on his face made the healer jump to conclusions on what had happened.

"Love potion gone awry, is it?" She was clucking her tongue at him and reminded him of a red hen.

"No, this is Nymphadora Tonks, an auror. She was poisoned on a mission."

"Likely story," muttered the Healer under her breath. "And who might you be?"

"Remus Lupin," he quickly replied. "Look, where do you want me to--"

"The Remus Lupin? The werewolf who served as the test subject for the Wolfsbane potion?"

Lupin held his temper. He held some notoriety in the medical community. "Yes, now if you could show me a bed--"

Hartly was now fluttering around him and occasionally prodding him as if trying to do an on-the- spot inspection. "You seem to be handling it well."

"Madam, my health is not the issue here. I need you to take care of Tonks!" Lupin raised his voice and was about to stalk off to find another healer.

"Well, you don't have to be so snappish. Comes from being a werewolf, I suppose," muttered Hartly. "Just set her down here in this room."

Lupin placed Tonks gently on the bed. Her breathing was so still! He wiped the bangs off of her forehead as he drew back.

Hartly then began her inspection with several, "Uh huh. No. Uh uh. Huh."

"Won't you need the potion bottle?" asked Lupin as he held it in his hand.

"Right, that should be helpful," said Hartly. "I'll be right back."

Hartly swept out, but Lupin's confidence in her abilities was not high. He stepped behind the admissions desk and found the mirror to communicate with the ministry. Soon he was speaking with Kingsley Shacklebolt to update him about the situation.

"Don't fret, Remus," assured Shacklebolt. "I'm on my way to Knockturn Alley right now. We've got the situation at Flourish and Blott's under control."

Lupin finished his report, then went back into Tonks room and leaned against the wall as he looked at her. He didn't want someone new in his life to care about. It was so hard when you lost them, much better to offer a friendly facade but let no one invade the walls. But something drew him to Tonks in the same way that he had been drawn into his friendship with Sirius.

Lupin moved to stand by her bed. "Why do you bring out the Marauder in me, Tonks?"

He kept a quiet vigil, but soon Hartly was back only this time, Mad-Eye Moody was following her. He had gotten rid of the wig, but still wore a rather tattered dress.

"The lass won't wake?" Moody asked already knowing the answer.

"I have to check one last thing, but I think I might know the remedy," said Hartly as she leaned over Tonks. "Now, if you gentlemen would give me some room?"

Moody and a reluctant Lupin moved toward the doorway. Lupin's eyes remained on Tonks as he asked, "What about Faust and Fester?"

"The culprits have been apprehended. The reporters from the Daily Prophet were already at Flourish and Blott's when I left." Moody's eye was spinning a bit, then he added. "They say we busted up a plan to steal the Lockhart preview volume!"

"Don't tell me the thing managed to go unscathed?" responded Lupin.

"Naw, it was torn to bits before I could finally get control," said Moody, but his lips quirked into a smirk.

At this point Hartly looked up and waved them over to the bed. Lupin came to stand by the left side while Moody walked over on the right to stand by Hartly. Moody asked, "So, you know how to fix her up?

"Oh, yes, indeed I do."

Lupin and Moody stared at the woman.

Hartly blinked at them and smiled.

"So, give her the antidote," said Lupin slowly through gritted teeth.

"Well, I can't give her the antidote. It has to come from a man," said Hartly, somewhat offended by his tone.

"Now see here, what difference does it make?" asked Moody.

"Miss Tonks is suffering from the poison apple potion." Hartly stopped as if that explained everything.

Lupin's memory was tickling him about the phrase 'poison apple', but he couldn't place it. "If you would give us more information?"

"The potion was developed by Maladora Grymm to use against a young woman who was more beautiful than her." Hartly practically beamed at them.

The pieces were starting to fall into place for Lupin. "Are you saying that Tonks has to be kissed?"

"By a man, yes, in fact, it should be her true love." Hartly was clasping her hands over her heart.

"But Tonks isn't in any relationship with a man," said Lupin.

"Oh, well, then I suppose we'll just have to pull in random men to kiss--"

"NO!" objected Lupin.

"Now, laddie, a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do," said Moody philosophically. Then he placed a hand on the mattress by Tonks head.

As Moody's head began to descend toward Tonks, Lupin finally overcame his shock and pushed at his shoulder.

"What do you think you're doing?" asked Lupin.

"Seeing if I can wake up the girl, unless you care to give it a try first," said Moody.

Lupin looked down at Tonks and frowned. Sirius could kill him. Hell, Tonks would kill him, too, but at least she'd be conscious to see to his demise.

Lupin rested a hand on her pillow, but then he noticed Hartly and Moody staring at him with the mad-eye spinning wildly.

"Do you mind?" he asked.

"But to witness the recovery process--" began Hartly.


As Moody and Hartly walked out of the room, the healer said, "Lupin must be an absolute beast to work with..."

Lupin sighed and shook his head. He would feel like such a fool when she failed to wake up. He could already feel the disappointment welling in him. But what if she did open her eyes? "Only for you, Nymphadora."

He bent over he body, convinced that the kiss would be in vain, but he shut away the negative feelings and focused on one thing: Come back to me.

Remus closed his eyes and pressed his lips almost chastely against hers. He was startled when he heard a sigh escaping her, but still her eyes would not open. He blinked as he struggled with his decision.

He moved again, but this time thought of the woman who teased him, the only woman who had tempted him in such a long time. He kissed her with the longing of his lonely years. He pulled back with his eyes still closed, thinking that he would see her still asleep.

"Remus?" asked Tonks as her eyes fluttered opened. "Where am I?"

Remus could only smile. "You're at St. Mungo's. Let me get the healer."

Tonks just nodded. She watched his retreating back and sighed again. She had been having the most wonderful dreams. But would they ever come true?

The healer walked in and clapped her hands in delight as she saw Tonks trying to sit up. "How delightful! The old remedy worked!"

"What remedy?" asked Tonks, a bit bewildered.

Lupin's face was flushing a bit and that he refused to make eye contact with her while Moody kept slapping him on the back saying, "I knew you could do it!"

"Why the oldest remedy of all, my dear, although your knight wears shabby armor."

Tonks looked at Remus and he finally met her gaze. She didn't lose eye contact with him as she told Hartly, "I wouldn't have him any other way."

The End

Thanks for reading. Hope this wraps it up for you regarding this plotline. I plan to continue working with the development of the LupinTonks.

I used the Harry Potter Lexicon for a lot of information. And about Snape and Trelawney, I think it was Emma Thompson's portrayal of her that cinched my interest there.

Finally, thank you for the reviews and encouragement. I appreciate the time you take to let me know you're enjoying the story.