Summary: Lupin Tonks, Moody, Black. Remus and Tonks have separate missions that lead them to the same place: his past.
Author Notes: Occurs during Order of the Phoenix at the beginning of the summer. This relies on the physical features of Lupin as presented in the PoA movie. Written Aug 24, 2004. Disclaimer: The characters belong to JK Rowling. The story was written for the pleasure of playing with her characters.
RAINBOWS AND MOONSTONES
"Thanks for inspecting the Shrieking Shack, Mad-Eye. This one's on me," said Nymphadora Tonks as she walked beside Alastor Moody down Diagon Alley. Her hair looked like raspberry sherbet today and gave Moody ideas as they made their way to Fortescue's Ice Cream Parlor.
"You left it almost too clean, Tonks," admonished Moody as they took their seats and gave their order. Sirius Black had lured Tonks and Remus Lupin to the Shrieking Shack in order to get rid of any residuals that could have been used against Lupin through the Dark Arts. Moody had inspected the premises in the early morning. Now it was mid-afternoon.
Once the a chocolate sundae and raspberry sherbet, arrived, Moody waved his wand several times over his bowl as he asked Tonks, "How many times did you decontaminate?"
Tonks shifted in her seat at her mentor's query. They had a long running argument concerning being overly cautious. She swallowed a healthy spoonful of ice cream before admitting, "Six times, but the last two might have been overkill. It looks like your habits are rubbing off on me."
"It's about time. You always were too cocky for your own good." Moody prodded his scoop with his spoon rather suspiciously before he took a bite. Then with a sympathetic look, he added, "You have a formidable decontamination spell, Tonks. It must have been a bloody mess."
"The residuals were so old and deep." Tonks seemed to be lost in her thoughts as she continued. "I could feel an echo of the pain, Mad-Eye. I don't know how it must have been for Remus. He was just a boy when the worst of it happened. It took his friends three years before they became animagi and helped ease the transformations."
"Those boys knew how to stick together back then. Made good bouncing ferrets, too," said Moody as he sifted his spoon through his sherbet to create a raspberry mush.
Tonks quirked an eyebrow. "I'll have to get that story out of Remus when I see him next."
"That'll be a while, then," said Moody, now picking up the sherbet bowl to slurp loudly at the dregs.
Tonks looked up sharply. "What? Am I being sent out on assignment?"
Moody smacked his lips in satisfaction and replied, "I wouldn't know about that; I just know Lupin's off."
"He left without even telling me," muttered Tonks to herself. What had she expected, though? It's not as if he owed her any of his time.
"Lupin had to leave quickly. Dumbledore showed up at number twelve this morning just as I finished telling Lupin that all was clear at the Shrieking Shack. The Headmaster knew Sirius Black had been out again, but didn't want to disturb your work cleansing the residuals. He had a talk with Sirius, then another urgent talk with Lupin."
"But it's just a day until the full moon," said Tonks. "Won't it be dangerous for Remus?"
Instead of agreeing with her, Moody seemed to change the subject. "Has Remus talked to you about his special assignments?"
Tonks nodded while she licked her spoon of the last bit of chocolate. "Remus has been recruiting for the Order. He's contacted the ten families where he served as a private tutor. Only four would see him and he said one invited him to dinner only to curse him. I don't know how he puts up with it."
"Still, he did at least convince three families that trouble is here. But the lad hasn't told you what he was doing for the past year before he got involved full time with the Order, has he?"
"Well, he left his position at Hogwarts and then, and then..." Tonks frowned as she realized there was a gap to Lupin's activities during Harry's fourth year.
"Then I'm not the one to be telling you, either," said Moody. He stood up abruptly and said, "I've got to go, Tonks. Don't fret about Lupin. He has the Wolfsbane Potion and is as good as any Auror now on duty against the Dark Arts. You just pay attention to your guard duty tonight."
wwwwwwwwwwRemus Lupin walked off the train and breathed in the familiar salt air of his childhood. An afternoon shower had just finished, but the sun now poked through the clouds and produced a rainbow. Lupin stopped for a moment and just absorbed the colors.
He closed his eyes and thought of bright pink hair, sparkling eyes and wished she were there to taunt him. His departure probably wouldn't matter to her at this point. After all, she led a full life without him, but Lupin still felt regret that he hadn't said, "Goodbye, Nymphadora."
His long stride soon carried him to his destination. It was a small house nestled against the cliffs that would be missed by most people. But the wizard could easily distinguish the herringbone pattern of the stones that dated back to the Roman occupation of the island. He approached the facade and murmured the incantation. He could almost hear his father saying the words as he spoke them. "Lupus domas."
Lupin was relieved to find everything undisturbed here. The family home was small, but across the centuries, it was always neatly kept. It was a talent of the Lupin line to be meticulous, from the first Roman soldier who was his direct ancestor, to the last of his line, Remus John Lupin. He touched the outline of the wolf that was embossed into the mantle and again felt the irony of his life. The family name, the traditions, all reflected the other special talent of the Lupins: Wolf Hunters.
Lupin opened the ebony box that sat on the mantle just to make sure the other amulet was still there. The moonstone glistened on its silver chain. His hand went to his chest without thinking and felt the twin Wolfshadow amulet that he carried. He looked at the wall and saw the shadow of his wolf.
wwwwwwwwwTonks showed up at number twelve Grimmauld Place too late to expect dinner, but she had another purpose to drop by this evening. She was hoping Sirius could give her more information about Lupin's whereabouts, but when she got there, all was chaos.
She stumbled on something squishy that still leapt away when she removed her foot. Her arm banged against the wall, setting off Mrs. Black's portrait. She saw Arthur race out of the drawing room to deal with the curtains as she called, "Sorry, Arthur."
Tonks flicked her wand to turn the leaping object into a pink feather boa that wafted gently until it landed on top of the mounted head of a house elf. After giving a satisfied nod to her work, she poked her head inside the drawing room to look for Sirius.
"Here comes another! Did you see the size of that one, Fred?" asked George as he monitored his brother Ron.
"Amazing that it can crawl up your throat, Ron," assured Fred as he patted his youngest brother on the back.
"I can't believe you'd do this to your own brother!" Hermione's voice rang with censure as Crookshanks batted something between his paws. "And I told you that testing their Forgetful Frogs wasn't worth the trouble, Ron!"
"Forgetting? What was I trying to forget?" asked Ron before another chocolate mint frog appeared out of his mouth and jumped into the bucket in front of him.
"Our visit to Mad--" Ginny was about to say Madam Puddifoot's, the teahouse they had visited in Hogsmeade so she could meet her boyfriend. Ron had been inspired to try anything to repress the memory other than an obliviate spell, hence the Forgetful Frogs.
"Hush, all of you. Not another word about it, do you understand?" admonished Molly Weasley as she waved her wand over the frogs to turn them into skeins of yarn. Waste not, want not.
"Er, Molly, is there anything I can do to help?" offered Tonks a bit bashfully.
"No, dear, we're fine. Sirius is in the kitchen if you want to see him. There are some sandwiches on the table, so help your--Catch that one, Ginny!"
Tonks slinked into the kitchen in relief. "Wotcher, Sirius."
"Mmm." Sirius was propping his head on his hand as he picked at a sandwich.
"All right, Mister Gloom, what's your problem?" Tonks sat down and neatly stole the slice of cheese from his plate.
"I am not a child."
Tonks swallowed the cheese and went for a slice of meat. "Right then. Sirius Black is not a child regardless of how much he's sulking. Anything else?"
"I am not sulking."
Tonks nabbed a piece of lettuce this time and nibbled a moment before observing, "Are you not sulking because Dumbledore was upset with you or because he sent Remus off?"
"Hmf. I don't need that lanky, laconic, lycanthropic--"
"Aren't you going to run out of L's?" asked Tonks as she grabbed another slice of meat. "Just say it with me. Lu-pin."
"I don't need Lupin defending my actions to Dumbledore." Sirius grabbed the slice of meat out of Tonks' hand and stuffed the whole thing in his mouth. "And quit eating my sandwich. You always were a nuisance as a child."
"And revenge was the only reason you kept coming back to babysit," observed Tonks as she deftly snatched a slice of bread and began trimming the crust. "So, where's Remus?"
"I can't say," responded Sirius as he removed the crust from the other slice of bread, "but the bloody fool won't take advice from me. No, Mister Professor thinks he doesn't need anyone's help. You'd think we proved to him that he can't do it all alone when we helped cleanse the Shrieking Shack? The self-sacrificing git!"
Now Tonks became alarmed. "What exactly do you mean by sacrifice?"
Sirius looked at her guiltily and responded, "I can't say."
"Ugh! You can be very annoying, Sirius Black."
"It runs in the family, Nymphadora Tonks."
Both cousins chewed miserably on the bread crusts. Tonks finally asked, "You'll let me know as soon as he's back?"
Sirius looked at his younger cousin. He never could say no when she used her puppy dog eyes. Reminded him of a Welsh corgi. "Yes, Tonks, I promise."
Even if he winds up at St. Mungo's, thought Sirius to himself.
wwwwwwwwwwThe tall man stood on the cliffs with his robe whipping around him with the wind. He watched the lighthouse glowing in the sunset and smiled. "I wish you could see it, Tonks. Someday?"
But he admonished himself. "Now you're being a fool, Moony. Just get through tomorrow night. And quit talking to yourself or you'll end up like Kreacher!"
His next destination was not so pleasant. He approached another herringbone wall and made sure no one was watching. With a few quick taps of his wand, he entered the Arsenal. He tried to calm his breathing. The long spears, the wide axe, chain-link nets, these were all tools designed for the Wolf Hunt, but now carried dried blood.
Lupin touched the Wolfshadow amulet. The blood was not from a werewolf for his wolf shadow was the only one cast in the room. The ancient weapons had been used against humans, just as Dumbledore had expected. It was a violation of all that had been put into their creation.
It was times like these that Remus wished he were still capable of crying.
wwwwwwwwwwNymphadora Tonks spent her evening of guard duty at the Ministry of Magic dreaming up new bylaws for Chocolate Lovers without Lovers, the private club she and Lupin shared, although most of them had negative repercussions for Lupin.
The party of the first part, ie, Tonks, shall force the party of the second part, ie, Lupin, to listen to one solid hour of the Weird Sisters should the insensitive git run off without saying goodbye.
Some were even downright violent.
The party of the first part, ie, yours truly, shall bludgeon the party of the second part, heretofore known as the inconsiderate prat, with a large and smelly halibut, with one slap allowed for each hour that yours truly spends worrying about you-know-who.
By the time Tonks finally made it to her bed, she merely fell into it fully clothed while setting forth her final bylaw.
The party of the first part shall pray that nothing harms the party of the second part so that she can either give him a good wallop or a righteous snog, depending on her mood, when the inconsiderate prat finally shows up.
wwwwwwwwwwThe man sat in the chair by the window as the waxing moon filled the sky. His reflection in it softened the scars marring his face, but his melancholy gaze was intense. He sipped the Wolfsbane Potion and thought about what he had discovered today.
The killings at the last full moon were certainly the work of a werewolf. But the way they happened suggested the power of the werewolf was directed by deliberate thought. Lupin sipped the Wolfsbane Potion and smiled again at the irony. Of course, it was the same thing he had been doing during the past year. Three times he'd hunted the werewolves during the full moon. He'd felt like a bounty hunter and swore he wouldn't do it again. But now here he was, possibly walking into a trap.
The Dark Arts were alive and well at Holyhead. All signs pointed to a Dark Wizard who was working with the werewolf. The Dark Wizard had brought his victims to the Arsenal, that much was clear. Those bodies had been disposed of more carefully than the other murders. And Lupin had a good idea who that Dark Wizard would be.
Lupin had to admit he needed help and made up his mind to owl Moody. This thought allowed him to relax and he let his mind drift to Tonks. She probably didn't even know he was gone yet.
wwwwwwwwwTonks was trying not to nod off at the Auror briefing the next morning. Kingsley Shacklebolt seemed only too pleased to jab his colleague in the ribs to keep her awake. Tonks turned her hair into the Slytherin green with streaks of silver in retort. Shacklebolt hated when she did that.
The Auror briefings were always performed by Carolynda Glockenspeil, a witch so ancient that she referred to Moody as the young brat. Her nasally voice was rather atonal and she had a penchant for ignoring questions, although most attributed that to a hearing problem.
"...and finally, the Ministry has decided that we need to investigate Gideon Skinner to squash the allegations that he is hiding ancient relics of the Dark Arts. You will be deployed this afternoon to the Island of Anglesey in Northwestern Wales and lodge overnight at the Skinner Manor at Holyhead. This is just a routine inspection and requires no special protocols. Are there any volunteers?"
Tonks had her hand over her mouth and was stifling a yawn when Shacklebolt bumped her elbow just right to send her hand flying up.
"Very good, Tonks. See Furbish for the brief and your apparation coordinates."
Tonks sat there stunned until she heard Moody's voice ring forth from the back. It was his prerogative to volunteer for jobs now that he was retired. "I'll be joining Tonks, then."
"Moody?" Tonks asked. She was needed here for the Order; she'd been just about to protest her assignment.
"Trust me, Tonks, you want the assignment," said Moody quietly.
This story is designed to fill in "gaps" about Remus Lupin and, of course, put Tonks and Remus in a situation that extends their relationship. The ideas presented here are common enough on various forums. It seems plausible that Remus got his credentials as a teacher by working as a private tutor. I imagine that he couldn't keep the job for more than 8-9 months, just like at Hogwarts.
Instead of a French background that is often ascribed to him, I've given Remus a Roman ancestry and I liked the ancient fort found on the Isle of Anglesey at Holyhead. Never been there, so you can't trust me for accuracy on details. Anyway, I thought that helped explain the name. And coming from a family of wolf hunter's certainly is not unique to me, but it is an element that works well in this story.
The moonstone, as you probably know, is an actual gem, very translucent, although you can find other shades. Among other lore it is associated with the sea, enhances perception, is linked to the Third Eye. It's also seen as feminine, promoting intuition, creativity. Anyway, the idea of the Wolfshadow amulet is not canon, but in case it wasn't clear, the wearer can detect a werewolf even in human form because they will see the shadow of the wolf.
I just hope you find this plausible.
I have no idea if Moody even likes sherbet and in keeping with his paranoia, made him check for spells before he touched it. I just thought that Tonks would have a neat influence on Moody that way and wanted to present some insight into their relationship.
The Forgetful Frogs was my reset button so that Ron would be ignorant of Ginny's boyfriend as occurs in Book Five.
This story will have three chapters and I hope to have it complete within ten days. It can be read as a stand-alone, but if you're new to this fanfic and want some background, just hit Queriusole to access the previous stories.
Thanks for reading and reviews.