Disclaimer: I only own Sandrine and the plot. JKR owns the rest.
A/N: Now, we'll see whether Remus is going to be okay... Or whether he's going to live... ::evil laughter:: ::sweet smile:: What, you believed me? Do you really think I could do something like that to Severus, or Sandrine? Never. Never ever.
But as if whether Sev and Remus will be together... Well, you'll just have to read and see, right? ::wink::
"How is he?" Severus asked with a low voice, nodding towards the unmoving figure that lay on a hospital bed. Sandrine was sitting on a chair next to the bed, eagerly explaining everything she'd done since their last visit. She didn't seem to be worried about the fact that her Mommy didn't even open his eyes, much less respond to her. Sandrine thought that sooner or later he would wake up, and that knowledge was enough for the child.
"We're worried," the mediwitch said quietly. "It's only a few days to the next full moon. If he doesn't wake up before it, he will not survive through the transformation."
Severus nodded slowly. So it was like he'd feared. Remus would die, and he could do nothing to prevent it. Sandrine would be left a half-orphan, doomed to spend the rest of her life with a bitter, hated man as her only living relative. Severus would be left alone, for he knew he could never love anyone other but Remus.
Remus would die, without even hearing that Severus still loved him.
"How was your visit?" asked the Headmaster, turning towards Severus. As soon as he saw the expression on the younger man's face, his face fell. "No progress then, I guess?" he asked quietly.
Severus nodded grimly. "If Remus dies, I'll be left alone with her," he then said quietly.
Albus nodded, his eyes lacking their usual twinkle. "I know," he said.
"How could that be?" Severus asked desperately. "I'm not parent material, Albus. You know that. I'd be an awful father."
"For what I see, you've been a truly great father this month," the older wizard said with a gentle smile. "Don't underestimate yourself, Severus. Sandrine adores you, even though she's spent so little time with you. Even if such a misfortune would come to us that Remus didn't make it, you'd surely get her - and yourself - over it."
"But I don't want to have to get over it," Severus said hoarsely. "I want him to wake up and survive."
This time, Albus said nothing.
Remus Lupin opened his eyes in the hospital bed. He glanced slowly around him, wondering where he was.
Slowly, he remembered something. The full moon, during which something had gone wrong. The next day, Andromeda and Ted. They, and a couple of other friends, had brought him to the hospital. And not only him, but Sandrine, too.
Sandrine. His little daughter wasn't there. And she had been there when he'd last been awake, that he was sure about.
"Sandrine?" he asked with a quiet voice.
There was no answer.
After listening for a moment, and not hearing anything, he raised his voice, "Sandrine?"
Suddenly, he heard quick footsteps approaching him. After a second a woman, dressed in a mediwitch's white uniform, came to the side of his bed.
"Awake at last, I see, Mr. Lupin," she said, sounding in fact happy. "That's good. We truly were worried about you. It's only the two days to the next full moon."
"The full moon," he said quietly, pondering the fact in his mind. "It just was full moon... Yesterday... Wasn't it?"
"I'm afraid no," she said with a gentle, motherly smile. "You came here the day after the last full moon, true. However, you've spent most of the month unconscious."
"Sandrine," he remembered again. "Where is Sandrine? Why isn't she here?"
"Now, now, Mr. Lupin, you need to calm down," the mediwitch sushered him. "Your daughter is all right, believe me. If you promise to try and keep calm, she'll be here the first time in the morning."
"But where is she now?" he demanded to know. "Who's taking care of him?"
"Oh, she's perfectly well, I can assure you," she answered him. "She's been staying at Hogwarts where, from what I've heard, she's soon become the pet of most of the teachers. They visited here yesterday."
"They?" Remus echoed, feeling still rather confused after his long sleep. "Who was with her?"
"Why, her father, of course," the mediwitch said with a slight chuckle. "They truly resemble each other, don't they? She looks mostly like you, of course, but something in her expressions... She's more than clearly a Snape."
At that point she noticed that she was talking to daft ears, since Remus had fainted.
In the middle of night, Severus was startled awake as somebody pushed his bedroom door open. "Sandrine?" he asked quietly, seeing the figure of a little child standing in the square of dim light coming from the corridor. "Is something wrong?"
The girl sniffled, "I had a bad dream..."
"Do come here," Severus said without a second thought. As soon as he said this, the little girl padded across the room to his bed, then climbed there to lie next to him, Mr. Moony steadily in one hand and a blanket in another. "Now, what was the dream about?" asked Severus then.
"We went to see Mommy... And he was not there," she sniffled. "There was somebody else in his bed... They said Mommy was there no more, and Father, I was so scared..." Not saying anything, Severus pulled her into a tight hug, holding her close.
"When will Mommy get better, Father?" asked Sandrine. "Will he?"
For a moment, Severus considered lying, but then decided that he could not do that to Sandrine. "I don't know, little gem," he said, using the petname he'd given to the girl. "I honestly don't know."
Just then, somebody else opened the door, bringing light with himself to the dim room. "Severus?" asked Headmaster Dumbledore. "Severus, they called for you from St. Mungo's... You and Sandrine should go there immediately."
Severus felt his heart freeze in his chest, as well as he felt Sandrine's tiny fingers clutch on his hand.
This was not happening, this couldn't be...
"Mommy!" Sandrine shrieked as soon as the door was opened. "You are awake!"
"That I am," came a hoarse reply from the bed. Remus was pale, thin, and sick-looking, but he was awake. Sandrine ran to him, being closed into a tight embrace.
Severus stood in the doorway, not sure of what was expected from him. As he watched, Remus let go of Sandrine, then locked his eyes at Severus. "Severus?" asked the raspy voice of his former lover.
"Remus..." he said testingly, all too well aware of the pair of glittering golden eyes watching both him and the werewolf lying on the bed. They had to be careful, both of them. Sandrine wasn't a stupid girl, she'd understand everything that was said and done.
"You said..." Remus took a deep breath, then tried again, "You said you didn't love me anymore..." The sadness was evident in the werewolf's voice, and his eyes gazed at Severus with the loneliness and sorrow of almost eight years shining from the amber pools.
Severus turned his head away, as if in shame. "I'm sorry, Remus," he said quietly. "I had no options... At least I thought I didn't have. The Dark Lord was killing and torturing the families of every Death Eater who was the tiniest bit disloyal to him. And I, being a spy, would have been punished extremely... Through you."
Remus was quiet for a moment, pondering. Then he said, slowly, "I understand."
"Do you, thought?" the Potions Master asked with a pained voice. "Can you really understand what it was like? Do you know how much it hurt me to tell that I didn't love you, to try and make you hate me, when I wanted nothing as much as close you into my arms and never let go?"
"I never hated you," Remus said softly.
"I know it now," Severus replied. "But then, I didn't know. I thought you hated me... That you didn't want anything to do with me. That's why I didn't come to you after the Dark Lord's defeat." He hesitated only for a moment, then, surprising himself as much as Remus, fell down to his knees. "Remus, love... Can you ever forgive me for what I did?" he asked hoarsely.
Remus watched him for a moment. Then, to his great relief, the werewolf broke into a smile - a tired and a bit wary one, yes, but a smile nonetheless. "Of course I forgive you, Severus," he said with a soft tone. "Now get up from the floor and come here."
Severus obeyed, walking next to the bed. He stopped there, unknowing of what was expected from him. To his great surprise, a pair of hands grasped on his own hands, pulling him down. The next thing he knew was that Remus was kissing him.
And he kissed back, of course.
It was a quiet night in the Hogwarts dungeons. Sandrine Lupin-Snape slept peacefully in the safety of her room. Mr. Moony was tucked safely under one of her arms, and her other plushies were looking at her from the foot of her bed. There were a couple of toys lying on the ground, but mostly they were collected into the toy basket, which was half-full of her stuff. A parchment was lying on the little table along with a few markers; she'd been drawing as it had been the time to go to sleep.
Two proud fathers watched her sleep from the doorway. They both had an arm around each other's waist, Remus's head resting against Severus's shoulder. The month after Remus had woke up had brought many changes to their lives. For one thing, Remus now resided permanently in Severus's quarters.
Some of other major changes were the two golden rings on both of their left ring fingers. Severus had proposed the day after the full moon, and Remus had gladly agreed. Just two weeks later, Dumbledore had wedded them, all teachers of Hogwarts witnessing and Sandrine as their only groomsmaid.
"She truly is a wonderful girl," Severus said, a tiny smile tugging at his lips.
"Anyone who can make you smile in Minerva McGonagall's presence must be a pure angel," Remus chuckled, remembering the story he'd heard from the Deputy Headmistress on their wedding day.
"Now, now, Remus, I don't think I'm quite that bad," Severus said, amused. "Besides, I even laughed today, remember?"
"Oh, I truly remember," the werewolf said dryly. "Three teachers fainted, Minerva almost choked on her coffee, Victoria Vector went into hysterics and poor Filius got a heart attack. Really, Severus, you're the only one who can almost kill somebody by just laughing!"
"Hey, I didn't mean it!" the Slytherin argued.
"I believe you," Remus said teasingly. "If you'd tried to kill him, I don't think you'd failed."
Severus merely glared at him. Then his expression lit up a bit. "Anyway, who could have ever thought that we could have such a wonderful child?" he asked, placing a little kiss on top of Remus's head.
"Mm-hmm," Remus mumbled. Then he turned his head to face his lover, a mischievous glint in his amber eyes. "Fancy having another?" he asked with a hint of amusement as well as longing in his voice.
"Just what I was going to say," the other man replied, returning his smile.
"Great minds truly work alike," the werewolf chuckled, then took his hand. "Come on. If we want another kid, we should get to work as soon as possible, hmm?"
"Oh, I most definitely agree," Severus replied with a slight smirk. Then, as he was led to the master bedroom by his eager lover, he murmured quietly, "And this time, I'm not leaving you alone."
Remus, with his werewolf hearing, heard his words. He didn't say anything, merely squeezed Severus's hand, which he was holding.
Severus returned the gesture.
A/N 2: Hugin and Mudin were, in Scandinavian mythology, the crow spies of Odin, the king of the Asas (the viking gods) and the afterlife.
Oh yeah, and I really love feedback. So make me happy, puh-lease?