A Final Epilogue

May, 2011

"Well, it's up to me to explain what we're doing, I guess." Ava Riddel stood nervously on the makeshift stage in the Room of Requirement, a hot spotlight preventing her from seeing exactly who was sitting at the tables around her. She knew that most of the Order of the Phoenix had come, however, because Theda had told her they would, and Theda was always right. Also, she was pretty sure Dumbledore had coerced them all, one way or another. She almost giggled at that thought, but then remembered what she'd agreed to do. There was no backing out now.

"A few months ago, Theda bought herself a karioke machine." Here she paused, trying to decide how to explain that to people who'd never been in the muggle world. "It's an electronic device for playing songs without the vocals. It's got this microphone so that I- we - can sing instead of whoever recorded the song." She had no idea whether the wizards understood that at all, but continued doggedly. This was the EASY part of her time on stage, after all.

"Mr. Weasley found the machine and mentioned it to Professor Dumbledore. Then they approached Theda and the three of them decided that it would be fun if all the girls in the Order got up here and – er – "

She wanted to say 'made fools out of themselves over the men they love,' but didn't think it would go over well with those waiting backstage, except maybe Professor Deesia, who seemed to think that this was just as stupid as Ava did. Instead, she sucked up her courage and said what Theda had made her memorize.

"Er- Express our feelings for the people we care about."

Out among the tables, Harry poked Draco hard. He'd only just got them talking again, and he wanted his friend to see how significant it was that Ava was up there. Draco didn't turn his eyes away from Ava at all. It was entirely possible that her song would be for someone else. After all, even after she'd finished school and joined the Order, they'd barely spoken and NEVER worked together. And it wasn't as if she was looking his direction at all.

She was dressed in a pale blue evening gown and looked very self-conscious. She wasn't the kind of girl who was used to having expensive things, Draco knew. The music started and she stood very still.

Ava had debated with herself whether or not to give her disclaimer. She could just make out the sparkle of Dumbledore's eyes in the front row, and frankly the sight strengthened her rebellious nature. At the last minute she spoke over the music. "You should know that the Headmaster threatened to take my favorite wand away if I didn't show up."

Several people laughed quietly, though she couldn't be sure who they were. A few beats later, she began to sing.


I'm crazy for feeling so lonely.
I'm crazy, crazy for feeling so blue.
I knew you'd love me as long as you wanted
and then some day you'd leave me for somebody new.

Worry, why do I let myself worry
wondering what in the world did I do.


for thinking that my love could hold you.
I'm crazy for trying
and crazy for crying
and I'm crazy for -

Worry, why do I let myself worry
wonderin' what in the world could I do.

Crazy for thinking that my love could hold you.
I'm crazy for trying
and crazy for crying
and I'm crazy for loving you.

Ava rushed off the stage, having barely whispered the final words of the song. Draco's mouth fell open. The first time that line had come around, she hadn't sung it, and he'd elbowed Ron to see if he knew the lyrics. Ron had only shrugged.

Behind the curtain there was a loud popping noise, and someone whispered, "It's still on. Go on, Mur." The applause for Ava died down, and after a bit more popping, Muriel stumbled out onto the stage, having obviously been pushed. She was dressed in blue jeans and a black tee-shirt that might have been borrowed from Tonks, considering that it was cut raggedly above her waistline, showing her navel. She made quite a contrast to Ava's elegance, with a microphone in one hand and her wand in the other. She hastily put her wand away as Sirius, and Sirius alone, started clapping. She narrowed her eyes, and he stopped abruptly and coughed into his hand.

"This was not my idea." She began angrily. Then she brightened a little. "Well, I did get to choose the song, and it isn't nearly as hard as the one Ava did." Here she paused and squinted toward Draco.

"Mr. Malfoy, are you still sitting out there?" she asked indignantly. Her magnified voice startled him into closing his mouth, but he didn't answer. Harry, sitting at the table behind Draco, shouted, "YES!"

Mur raised an eyebrow, and Remus, who was standing somewhere in the back, chuckled softly. He knew that look. "Get yourself backstage, Mr. Malfoy," she said, holding the microphone away from her mouth. Then she turned toward the sound of the laughter and spoke into the microphone again. "You'll get yours, Moony," she warned, smirking. "But in the meantime, if you could just stand behind Sirius that'd be very helpful." The horrid spotlight was blinding her, but she was sure that Sirius looked worried.

Remus chuckled again and went to stand behind Sirius, though he wondered what she meant by that comment. After all, he didn't have a girlfriend anymore, so he should be exempt. She hadn't sounded amused.

The music started. It was a catchy, fast tune that Mur knew Sirius would have loved if it hadn't been for the words.

I want a new duck
One that won't try to bite
One that won't chew a hole in my socks
One that won't quack all night

I want a new duck
One with big webbed feet
One that helps me to wash my hair
And keeps our room real, real neat

One that won't raid the ice box, One that'll stay in shape
One that's never gonna try to migrate or escape
Though he's been known to escape.

I want a new duck
A Black one, I think
One that won't make a mess of my house
Or build a nest in the bathroom sink

I want a new duck
One that won't steal my beer
One that won't stick his bill in my mail
One that knows the duck stops here

One that won't drive me crazy, waddling all around
One who'll teach me how to swim and help me not to drown
And show me how to get down
How to get down, baby

Get it?

I want a new duck
Not a swan or a goose
Just a bird I can dress real cute
with a real, real cute caboose.

I want a new duck
Not a quail or an owl
One that won't molt too much
One that won't smell too fowl

One that won't beg for breadcrumbs, Hangin' around all day
He'd better mind his manners, Better do just what I say
Or he's gonna be duck patte, duck patte, yah, yah

After the first line of the song, Severus and Remus were laughing so hard they nearly drowned her out, but she continued. They'd had to choose a song sung by a man to make it low enough for her to pull off. But she'd sung along enough at the dance clubs she frequented in America that her voice was smooth and controlled. All in all, she was happy with how it turned out.

Albus Dumbledore, sitting in the front row in the hopes that Minerva was also going to participate, had guffawed so loudly at the "down" joke that the Transfiguration professor had, herself, come out onto the stage and silenced him. Draco, Harry, and Ron were still laughing when the music ended, trying to imagine Sirius doing "just what" anyone said. When had he ever?

Muriel, flushed and very pleased with herself, pulled out her wand and waved it in the direction of the spotlight, which turned abruptly on Sirius, who was beet red, but quite obviously fighting back a smile. Remus still had a restraining hand on his shoulder, however. Severus, at the very next table, had his head down, his shoulders shaking violently. In the sudden light that flooded the area, everyone could see that he was more amused than even Muriel. All his one-time students were disconcerted at the sight.

Mur winked at Sirius, who just shook his head and gave in to his grin. Then she put the spotlight back on herself as her friends stopped clapping. "This next song will be slow again. Some of you might not know our vocalist, as she's not a member of the Order. She has a very nice voice, however, and I think that at least the Weasleys will know who she's singing to." Here Muriel smiled sweetly. "And that's over half the audience, anyway, so I guess it all works out for the best." Everyone laughed except George, who was pretty sure he knew what was coming.

Mur disappeared backstage and Jamila appeared a moment later. She didn't introduce herself, as the music had already begun. Like Ava, she was dressed to the nines. Alastor Moody clapped and whistled until Arthur Weasley put a hand on his shoulder and shook his head.

If it were love I would give that love every second I had
And I do
Did I know where he'd lead me to?
Did I plan
Doing all of this for the love of a man?

Well I let it happen anyhow
And what I'm feeling now
Has no easy explanation
Reason plays no part
Heaven help my heart

I love him too much
What if he saw my whole existence
Turning around a word, a smile, a touch?

One of these days, and it won't be long,
he'll know more about me
Than he should
All my dreams will be understood
No surprise
Nothingleft to learn from the look in my eyes

Don't you know that time is not my friend
I'll fight it to the end
Hoping to keep that best of moments
When the passions start
Heaven help my heart

The day that I find
Suddenly I've run out of secrets
Suddenly I'm not always on his mind.

Maybe it's best to love a stranger
Well that's what I've done -- heaven help my heart
Heaven help my heart

It was such a sad song, but beautifully done. Percy, sitting off to the right with Charlie and Bill, could be seen wiping tears away as all three of them clapped tumultuously. They were glad to think that someone could care that much for one of the rambunctious twins who'd driven them nuts when they all had to share the Burrow. George grinned quietly to himself from the back wall where Remus had been standing earlier. It wasn't an indication that she'd decided, but it wasn't a rejection either. He'd ask her again tonight.

Jamila smiled half-heartedly at the applause before heading backstage. She hadn't spoken a word. A moment later Hermione appeared.

"Well, we didn't realize Jamila was nervous about talking on stage until it was time for her to do it, so I get to do the next introduction. But I DO have a song to sing." Ron's groan was audible throughout the room, but to everyone's surprise, Hermione only laughed. "When he has to hear me in the shower, he's earned the right to express his displeasure. Lucky for him I'm only kidding. I don't have a song because even Theda had to admit when she heard me that it would be cruel and unusual punishment to make you sit through it. All I have is an announcement. I stopped by St. Mungo's today and found out why we can't seem to get the gender identification charm to work. It's because we're having twins – a boy and a girl!"

Ron jumped up from the table before she'd even finished speaking and vaulted up onto the stage. He lifted Hermione and swung her around. The microphone clattered loudly to the ground as Hermione squealed, but no one heard it through the fresh round of applause, and whistles from the Weasley twins. Ron kissed his wife heartily, taking a cue from Sirius and Mur's wedding.

Finally Manasa came out on stage and everything went abruptly silent. Intimidated, Ron put his wife back on her feet and picked up the microphone for Manasa, who inclined her head in thanks. Ron helped Hermione down from the stage and she took a seat beside him.

Before she'd come onto the stage, Manasa had cast a vision enhancement charm on herself, and she smirked wickedly at Severus, whose eyes were wide. He looked a bit like a cornered animal. "Surely you didn't think Muriel was going to let me get out of this," she said dryly. She could clearly see him gulp. "But if YOU want to try and make your exit before I embarrass you, now would be the time. If she tries to hex you, I'll hold her off." No one laughed at that joke except Severus. No one thought a duel between Muriel and Manasa was a particularly funny prospect.

Mur stuck her head out from behind the curtain as Severus made to stand. "Don't let her fool you – she just doesn't want to be embarrassed in front of you!" she exclaimed, laughing.

A moment later a brick wall appeared where Muriel's face had been, and Sirius was pushing Severus back into his seat. "It can't be any worse than the duck song," he whispered. This earned him nothing more than a familiar glare as Severus leaned back in his chair and crossed his arms defiantly. Muriel had apparently started the music from backstage, and Manasa was not the sort to back out once she'd begun.

I hate the world today
You're so good to me
I know but I can't change
Tried to tell you
But you look at me like maybe
I'm an angel underneath
Innocent and sweet
Yesterday I cried
Must have been relieved to see
The softer side
I can understand how you'd be so confused
I don't envy you
I'm a little bit of everything
All rolled into one

I'm a bitch, I'm a lover
I'm a child, I'm a mother
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed
I'm your hell, I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know you wouldn't want it any other way

So take me as I am
This may mean
You'll have to be a stronger man
Rest assured that
When I start to make you nervous
And I'm going to extremes
Tomorrow I will change
And today won't mean a thing

I'm a bitch, I'm a lover
I'm a child, I'm a mother
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed
I'm your hell, I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know you wouldn't want it any other way

Just when you think, you got me figured out
The season's already changing
I think it's cool, you do what you do
And don't try to save me

I'm a bitch, I'm a lover
I'm a child, I'm a mother
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed
I'm your hell, I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know you wouldn't want it any other way

I'm a bitch, I'm a tease
I'm a goddess on my knees
When you hurt, when you suffer
I'm your angel undercover
I've been numb, I'm revived
Can't say I'm not alive
You know I wouldn't want it any other way

As it turned out, Manasa had a fairly raspy voice and it sounded a lot like the actual artist, though only a few of the girls backstage would know it. None of the men of the Order were from muggle families except Harry, who'd begun ignoring the muggle world as soon as he possibly could.

"Severus, you are in all kinds of trouble," Sirius quipped over the applause. He was impressed that the forbidding man hadn't bolted, and more than a little surprised that there was no annoyance on his face. Manasa's vision enhancement had worn off, but she'd seen enough. He was pleased. She had, after all, chosen correctly. She'd have to remember to thank Muriel for suggesting the song.

The two women had found that they understood each other very well, and in the two months since they'd met they had formed a close friendship. At first, this had made Severus very uncomfortable. Muriel had more blackmail material on him than any human being, living or dead. He'd relaxed a little when he finally ascertained that she wasn't spilling the beans.

Then he'd discovered that it was Manasa he had to worry about. She'd been telling Muriel nearly everything he'd ever done as a death eater. He'd been furious, until she pointed out (loudly) that Muriel wasn't likely to start judging him at this point in their lives.

Only three days previous, he, Mur, and Sirius had gone out to buy an engagement ring. If anyone had told him twenty years ago that Sirius Black would help him with the most important decision of his life, he would have had them committed. ButSirius had been the one to find the ring, a deep-set square emerald, in an antique store. There was beautiful jewelry in the vault at Snape manor, but somehow he couldn't think of anything from that collection that would be appropriate. He pulled out the ring box and turned it over in his hands. Remus, from the table behind Sirius, fished a chunk of ice out of his drink and threw at him, then grinned knowingly as Severus thrust the box back into his pocket.

As the men contemplated Severus' newest form of courage, Manasa removed the brick wall that had been her backdrop. An instant later, Tonks appeared onstage, looking slightly put out. Manasa tried to hand her the microphone, but she refused it.

Everyone in the room sat up straighter. Was something wrong? It was Bill Weasley who figured it out. "Finite Incantem," he said, raising his wand.

"Thanks, Bill. It was my turn next, but the person I wanted to – I mean," Tonksglanced involuntarilytoward the recently vacated chair Bill was standing next to, causing him to look there also. He hadn't even seen Charlie leaving. "Well, they pushed me out here before they realized I didn't have anyone to sing to," she finished lamely. Sirius stood up as Tonks vaulted from the stage and took off out into the castle proper. Manasa, standing behind her on stage, turned abruptly and thrust the curtain aside. They heard the microphone being gently set down.

There were a few minutes of silence, during which Sirius sat back down, an angry look on his face as he stared at the empty stage. That was his little cousin that'd just run out of here crying! Then, suddenly, the men were startled by the sound of several shouted hexes. An instant later, Charlie Weasley came running out from backstage. His robes had been enchanted to say "STUPID GIT" on both the front and back. They had also been changed from his usual green to a rather vivid version of pink. He was bald, and a target had been charmed onto the back of his head. In the center it said, "I deserved that."

He, too, vaulted from the stage and dodged through the tables, several spells hitting the floor behind his feet. They wrinkled their noses as he passed them. He smelled awful. Muriel was right behind him. "You'd better FIND her, Charlie Weasley, you ungrateful MISCREANT!" She'd changed back into her usual robes, and Sirius grinned up at her as she parked herself on the edge of the stage, dangling her feet. He wouldn't have expected any less.

Mur summoned the microphone. "Well, that didn't go so well. It was a cute song, too. It would have been loads less embarrassing if he'd just let her sing it!" She kicked her feet, looking rather like an out of place baby doll, sitting all alone on the stage, with the spotlight falling behind her.

"We have several people who've chosen for one reason or another not to participate. I've been debating the safety of insulting the legendary Gryffindor courage, but when I tell you who is back there digging in her heels, you can make your own assumptions." She paused dramatically. Backstage no fewer than 3 Gryffindors held their breath.

"The illustrious Professor McGonagal will NOT come out on stage because the outfit Manasa helped her choose is – "

"MISS DEESIA, THAT IS QUITE ENOUGH," Minerva cut her off angrily, though she didn't appear. All her former students laughed heartily. The professor was so upset that she'd entirely forgotten that Mur was no longer a student, and, for that matter, no longer a Deesia.

"Let's say it's not to her liking." Mur grinned impishly at the disappointed expression on the headmaster's face, then continued quickly in a confidential whisper, still speaking into the microphone. "But she says YOU can see it later!" She jumped down off the stage and hid behind Sirius as a furious Minerva McGonagal thrust aside the curtain and stormed into the center of the stage. She was so angry that she didn't realize she'd been tricked until Mur charmed the spotlight to follow her.

"Oh BUGGER!" she exclaimed, trying to avoid it. Sirius took the microphone and levitated it over to the stage as the men started clapping heartily. This time when Alastor whistled, no one stopped him.

Minerva's sequined dress was, of course, Gryffindor red, and far slinkier than she would have chosen. Manasa had picked it to go along with the song, a classic from "Showboat," one of the few muggle plays herparents had taken her towhen she was a very small child. It was modest enough in the front, but the BACK neckline was low enough to show the dimples above her buttocks. If she hadn't been trying to move out of the spotlight, they would never have seen that until after her song.

Severus Snape got up from his table and walked calmly over to the Headmaster. He whacked him on the back so hard that the sound echoed, and Albus made a choking sound before taking a deep breath. "Don't forget to breathe, you barmy old codger," he whispered, smirking maniacally. The entire room snorted and chuckled, trying not to laugh outright as the music began.

Minerva was finally still, resigned to the charm that was causing the spotlight to track her.

Only make believe I love you,
Only make believe that you love me.
Others find peace of mind in pretending,
Couldn't you?
Couldn't I?
Couldn't we?
Make believe our lips are blending
In a phantom kiss, or two, or three.
Might as well make believe I love you,
For to tell the truth I do

Your pardon I pray
'Twas too much to say
The words that betray my heart.

Ionly pretend
It should not offend
Thisplaying a lover's part.

The game of just supposing
Is the sweetest game I know.
Our dreams are more romantic
Than the world we see.

And if the things we dream about
Don't happen to be so,
That's just an unimportant technicality.

Though the cold and brutal fact is
I've been playing hard to get,
You need not mind convention's P's and Q's
If we put our thoughts in practice
We can banish all regret
Imagining most anything we choose.

Only make believe I love you,
Only make believe that you love me.
Others find peace of mind in pretending,
Couldn't you?
Couldn't I?
Couldn't we?
Make believe our lips are blending
In a phantom kiss, or two, or three.
Might as well make believe I love you,
For to tell the truth I do

There was a huge round of applause for this song. Unlike the others, Minerva stood and waited silently after the applause died away, her expectant gaze fixed on Dumbledore. She'd had to change a few words to make the song fit, but not many. Finally she lifted the microphone back to her lips. "Aren't you going to say anything, you daft old coot?" she demanded.

At this, the entire Weasley clan began laughing hysterically. Fred and George were literally rolling on the floor. Dumbledore shook his head, still dumbstruck, and pulled out the empty chair beside him. The twins exchanged a glance. 'A phantom kiss, eh? That could be arranged.' The thought went through both their minds at once, as was usually the case. They didn't need to discuss it.

"I can't exactly vault off the stage, Albus," she said, in a voice that would have been better used in private. The Headmaster stood abruptly and went to the stage, placing his hands around her waist to lift her down. It was all he could do to make it look easy, but he pulled it off, earning more raised eyebrows than he cared to think about.

Dumbledore held the chair for her as she sat, tossing the microphone back up to Theda, who'd stepped out onto the stage while everyone was watching the professors. She grinned, then raised it to her mouth. Remus bit his lip.

She didn't get to speak, however, as everyone's attention turned back to Dumbledore, who'd just had his ears boxed. "NOT IN FRONT OF EVERYONE!" Minerva shrieked, standing abruptly. The Headmaster looked bewildered, and so did everyone else. Everyone, that is, except Fred and George, who were sniggering wickedly, having found their way to the back of the room again.

Molly Weasley would recognize the sound of their laughter anywhere. It meant trouble. She was beside Theda on the stage in a heartbeat. "What have you two done now?" she demanded, squinting towards them. The laughing stopped abruptly. A door opened and closed and Molly let her shoulders sag. She just didn't have the energy to chase them down.

Minerva, slightly mollified to find that Albus had NOT, in fact, kissed her in front of all her colleagues, performed a "finite incantem," on her enchanted chair and sat back down, apologizing quietly. She tried hard not to grin like a schoolgirl when she felt Albus pat her knee reassuringly, then let his hand rest there as though she might not notice.

Theda lifted the microphone again, shaking her head. "Jamila, the twins took off, can you go get them, please. Or just get Fred, at least." She turned back to the audience as Jamila, dressed normally again, jumped down from the edge of the stage and headed out the door. Behind her Draco and Ava, hand in hand, made their way over to sit with Harry, Ron and Hermione.

"Well, Muriel would never forgive me if I didn't point out that yet another reluctant Gryffindor has been conveniently forced onto the stage." Theda had taken Molly's arm before speaking, which was good, because she'd pulled away the minute she realized that she'd been caught out. She had not practiced as much as the other girls, since she had been spending all her free moments with the Egyptian orphans, trying to teach them all to read English before the next school year. She looked helplessly toward her husband as the microphone was thrust into her hand.

Before the music could start, he walkedto the stage and jumped up on it. She sighed in relief. He was bailing her out.

"I hardly think that after all these years I need to hear a song to remind me. I can't see a head of red hair without knowing we're in love," he said to her quietly. Everyone clapped wholeheartedly as Mr. and Mrs. Weasley made their way back off the stage to sit down again, leaving the microphone behind. Harry, Remus, Bill, Percy and Fred (who'd been dragged back in by Jamila and George) clapped the loudest. No one had yet sung to them, and frankly, they were glad. Fleur was out of town, so Bill didn't have to worry. Harry hadn't dated anyone since Cho, who'd left England for good right after her seventh year. Penelope, protesting that she couldn't sing at all, had stayed at the Burrow to keep an eye on Jamila's girls, Janus, and their own little girl, so Percy felt confident that no one would be singing to him. Fred and Remus, however, were both worried.

After an awkward pause, Ginny rushed out onto the stage. "Sorry. We weren't expecting that. I don't suppose I could get away with it too?" Manasa and Muriel appeared on either side of the curtain behind her, both with their wands drawn. "Right," Ginny said, gulping, and turning back to the men of the Order of the Phoenix, all of whom were gaping at her. No one had really expected Ginny to sing, after all, none of the boys she'd dated from school had ended up joining the Order. She waited, but the music didn't start. Muriel disappeared and a muffled sob was heard backstage. An instant later, she reappeared and rushed over to the edge of the stage. "Jamila, Theda needs your help with something." Mur followed Jamila backstage again, but not before casting an angry glance at Remus that was enough to make everyone present wince. He got up to leave and found himself face to face with both Sirius and Severus.

"Sit down, Moony," Sirius whispered. Eyes wide, he did so, and they followed suit. Ginny had already begun to sing.

Am I dreamin' or stupid?
I think I musta been hit by Cupid.
But no one needs to know right now.

I know a tall, dark and handsome man.
And I've been busy makin' big plans.
But no one needs to know right now.

I got my heart set, my feet wet
And he don't even know it yet
But no one needs to know right now.

I'll tell him someday, some way, somehow
But I'm gonna keep it a secret for now.

I want bells to ring, a choir to sing
The white dress, the guests, the whole darn thing
But no one needs to know right now.

I'll tell him someday some way somehow
But I'm gonna keep it a secret for now

We'll have a little girl a little boy
A little dog that we'll call Leroy
But no one needs to know right now.

And I'm not lonely anymore at night
And he don't know only he can make it right.

And I'm not lonely anymore at night
And he don't know only - only he can make it right.

I'm not dreamin' or stupid,
But boy have I been hit by Cupid.
But no one needs to know right now.

No one needs to know right now.

Ginny grinned cutely when the song ended. She'd been more confident than anyone, knowing that the identity of her crush was still relatively safe. No one would suspect that she still thought of Harry that way after all the boys she'd dated. She even took a slight bow as her brothers exchanged worried glances and the rest of her friends clapped. When she'd turned to go off the stage she was startled to see Theda awaiting the microphone instead of Angelina. But the older woman smiled and took it from her, looking over the heads of everyone present.

"Angelina asked me to make her apologies. She has a mysterious case of laryngitis which will probably disappear the first time Fred tries to kiss her." A few people laughed. The lighthearted joke would have been funnier if it hadn't been for the odd, glazed look in Theda's eyes.

"We've had a great time singing for you tonight. But men tend to get sick of sappiness, which is about all we've had except for Mur, who refused to embarrass her husband by being mushy in public." She smiled wryly. "Not because she has an aversion to embarrassing him, obviously. I can't blame her, really. I'm not in the mood for anything sappy tonight, either." She stopped speaking and nodded her head. The music began.

Instantly they could see that she was a performer. Alone among their women, she'd sung on stage before. Remus wasn't watching her, but his eyes snapped up when the music started. He'd been expecting the dulcet tones of the song he'd heard her singing before the confrontation at Hogwarts two months ago. This song was harsher by far. He lowered his head to the table and let the tears fall as the words washed over him.

No more carefree laughter.
Silence ever after.
Walking through an empty house, tears in my eyes.
Here is where the story ends, this is goodbye.

Knowing me, knowing you,
There is nothing we can do.
Knowing me, knowing you,
We just have to face it, this time we're through.
Breaking up is never easy, I know, but I have to go.

Knowing me, knowing you
It's the best I can do.

Memories, good days, bad days;

They'll be with me always.
In these old familiar rooms children could play,
But there's only emptiness, nothing to say.

Knowing me, knowing you.
There is nothing we can do.
Knowing me, knowing you,
We just have to face it, this time we're through.
Breaking up is never easy, I know, but I have to go.

Knowing me, knowing you
It's the best I can do.

Knowing me, knowing you
There is nothing we can do.
Knowing me, knowing you
We just have to face it, this time we're through.
Breaking up is never easy, I know, but I have to go.

Knowing me, knowing you
It's the best I can do.

The tone of the song was more apologetic than angry, and Remus had mastered himself by the time she finished. He vaguely registered a heavy hand on each of his shoulders, not really caring who they belonged to. He was beyond humiliation, since most of the Order had been there for the argument that had spurred this. He wondered arrogantly if she'd coordinated this whole thing just to punish him before he caught himself and realized that he sounded just like James. He snorted to himself, and Sirius, who he now realized was on his left, mistook it for a sob and put his arm all the way around his shoulders. Everyone else clapped politely, but Theda had already left the stage.

When the girls all came back on stage together, Muriel holding the microphone, Theda wasn't with them. "Thanks, everyone. Now it's time for the last order of business for the evening. Damage control."

The applause stopped abruptly as she stepped out in front of the others. "Did Charlie and Tonks come back?" she asked. Getting no answer, she turned toward the rest of the Weasley boys. "Bill, go find your brother. Black, check on Tonks." Sirius winked at Severus, who always smirked when she addressed her husband by his surname.

She waited until they'd left. "George, take Jamila back to Headquarters as fast as you can and see if she can stall Theda. Steal her shoes, she won't leave without them." Mur's brisk words pulled Remus out of his stupor. George and Jamila were already receiving a port key from Dumbledore. An instant later they were gone.

"Well," Dumbledore said quickly, trying to head off the questions he knew Remus was about to start asking, "I think it's time most of us said goodnight, then." Molly and Arthur ushered everyone out with many "goodnights," and "good jobs" exchanged. In the end only Severus, Manasa, Remus and Mur remained. Remus was staring hard at Muriel, who jumped down off the stage and pressed the microphone hard into his chest.

"You forgot, Moony," she said angrily. Without any further explanation she headed for the door.


She didn't pause or turn around. "I warned you not to give her up. You forgot." Then the door slammed behind her. The Room of Requirement shifted around the remaining occupants. The stage disappeared to be replaced by a bar. A very well stocked bar. Severus was already pouring Remus a drink by the time he pulled his eyes away from the closed door.

Manasa watched in silence as Remus downed two shots of firewhisky and lifted the third to his lips. Severus was apparently in charge of keeping Remus from doing anything too stupid for the night. She knew better than to think Muriel hadn't planned for this. But Severus wasn't the type of person who should be giving anyone advise on women. She grinned and blasted the shot glass out of Remus' hand with her wand.

"Are you an idiot?" she asked haughtily. Remus and Severus both blinked at her, not sure who she was referring to. "Severus, do you have a port key back to Headquarters or not?" She strongly suspected he did. Sure enough, he produced one and set it on the bar.

"He doesn't need us here to decided what to do with that," she said pointedly. Severus was inclined to agree, but he'd promised Mur that he wouldn't leave Remus alone if this happened. He turned toward her, prepared to argue, but she gestured back to the bar and he turned again to see that Remus was already gone.

The room shifted again as he put his arm around her and led her back to his quarters. Janus was spending the night at the Burrow, and someone might as well have a nice evening. They passed Draco and Ava snogging in the hallway. For once Severus ignored it. They weren't students anymore, after all.

Harry was walking across the grounds with Ron, Hermione and Ginny. The girls were giggling about the songs, and the rather convenient disappearance of Fred and Angelina. The boys were wondering how Remus was doing. At least, for a little while, until Ron abruptly changed the subject.

"You know, Harry, Hermione and I always wondered why you haven't been dating anyone lately. I mean, really, you haven't had a girlfriend since Cho!"

Harry rolled his eyes. "Well, you know, the whole 'not knowing how long I'll survive' thing was a bit of a deterrent. Not exactly fair to start going out with someone when I knew I might die any day." His voice was nonchalant, but everyone stopped in their tracks to look at him. It was Ginny who spoke.

"THAT'S why you never asked anyone out?" She was proud of herself for sounding only interested and not relieved. Ron and Hermione exchanged a slight smile and started walking again, letting them fall behind and talk it out. Ron had always suspected that Ginny still harbored a secret crush on Harry. He thought suddenly of her song and laughed. It had been the perfect song, really, if you knew who she was singing it for.

Hermione poked him in the ribs and grinned before starting a whispered conversation about what to name the babies. They needed to pick out two names, now!

Theda had already packed, so when she port keyed directly into her room at Sirius and Muriel's house, she just sat on the bed for a moment, trying to collect herself. She'd made it through the damned song without crying. Ava owed her 5 galleons and Mur owed her 20, so that was something. She smiled wryly. As she'd expected, Jamila appeared in her doorway.

"I'm glad I didn't bet against you."

"Yes, well, Mur and Ava don't seem to understand that I can be strong without being the world's most powerful witch." She smiled at her friend. She, Jamila, Hermione and Ava had all been raised as muggles, and as such they got along very well. While Muriel had been cultivating a new friendship with Manasa, Theda had drifted toward those she understood a little better, even though they were all a good bit younger than she was.

"That wasn't strength at all," Jamila said. "If you ask me, it was cowardice in its purest form." She came into the room as Theda jumped up and turned her back to check and be sure the drawers were empty.

"I don't know what you mean," she responded coldly.

"You aren't going to tell him?"

Theda slammed a drawer closed. "NO."

"He deserves to know."

"He deserves a lot of things he doesn't want," Theda answered, forcing her teeth to unclench as she spoke.

Jamila cast a look over her shoulder. George and Remus were standing in the doorway, both with puzzled expressions. She shook her head as Theda continued angrily.

"If he doesn't want a girlfriend he wouldn't exactly be pleased with a child, now would he?" Theda demanded, opening and slamming another empty drawer.

"Can I ask you a question?" Jamila said quickly, trying to cover Remus' strangled noise of surprise.


"Are you really not aware that he's standing behind us?"

Theda spun on the spot with a look of horror in her eyes. Remus had already recovered. He spoke softly. "She's got a point. Surely you knew exactly what would happen if you sang that song tonight. You must have known I would be here."

"Not yet. You're about 5 minutes early," Theda admitted stiffly. "Manasa must have sent you. I can't always predict correctly for her. That's alright. It saves me the trouble of keeping up the small talk I suppose.

They heard the front door open and Harry, Ginny, Ron and Hermione entered the house and started trooping up the stairs. At the same moment they heard the sound of several loud pops from the vicinity of the kitchen. Mur and Sirius were home, too.

"Where are you going," Jamila asked, breaking the silence. George had come into the room and was now sitting firmly on Theda's trunk.

"I still have family in the states. If they don't think I've murdered my husband, I'll stay with them." Having checked all the drawers, she turned to George. "Move,"

"What's the magic word?" he said, grinning up at her. Jamila rolled her eyes. Trust George to think everything was a joke.

"Wingardium Leviosa," Theda responded, lifting him into the air and depositing him sideways on the floor. She bent to pick up her trunk.

"Probably shouldn't lift that," Jamila commented dryly. She and George were both looking expectantly at Remus, who appeared determined to remain silent.

Theda straightened up, looking defeated. She had yet to meet his gaze and Jamila wondered if she was waiting for him to say something. Then George spoke up again. "What'd you two fight about anyway?" he asked. Jamila smiled. George must have been thinking the same thing she was. Surely this would make Remus talk. But it didn't. Theda answered instead.

"I was trying to comfort Ava by pointing out that her difficulties with an arrogant rich boy who was afraid she didn't love him were nothing compared to trying to win the heart of werewolf with an inferiority complex."

Jamila winced at the angry expression that appeared on Remus' face, but George only laughed, which darkened his one-time professor's eyes even further. "Exactly how is that funny?" he growled, forgetting that he hadn't wanted to comment.

George stifled his laughter. "I was just remembering when Harry told us all that you weren't going to teach anymore. How you were just sure that no one would want you there." Any mirth that had been in his voice drainedaway as he finally picked himself up off the floor and held out a hand to Jamila. "You were wrong you know," he said quietly as he led her past Remus and out into the hall. "You were a great professor. Pity you gave up the best job in the world because you weren't willing to risk it."

When they were gone, Remus pulled the door closed behind him forcefully. For a long moment, no one spoke.

"Don't go," he said, not looking at her. In answer, she levitated her trunk onto the bed and opened it to put the few items she'd just found inside. Tired of being ignored, he crossed the room and took her elbow to turn her toward him.

She shook him off angrily. "You think I'd actually CONSIDER raising this child here? You're more of an idiot than I'd thought. YOU ARE INCAPABLE OF LOVING ANYONE FOR MORE THAN 28 CONSECUTIVE DAYS, REMUS! THIS BABY DESERVES BETTER THAN THAT! BETTER THAT SHE HAVE NO FATHER AT ALL!"

With that, she defiantly lifted her trunk off the bed and threw open the door to her room to find Sirius, George, Harry and Ron all standing outside with extendable ears. "GET THE HELL OUT OF MY WAY!" They scattered. But before she managed to heave the trunk into the hallway she heard Remus whisper behind her.

"It's a girl?" Her trunk thudded to the floor. In the span of time it took her to turn around, the hallway had cleared.

"Yes," she answered wearily. Remus sat down heavily on the bed, but didn't look at her. She cast a glance down at her trunk and sighed. "I think I'll just buy new things when I get there," she said quietly. She didn't really want to hurt the baby by lifting something that heavy. Then she disapparated. A moment later Sirius came into the room.

"If she stuck to the plan, she's in the kitchen with Mur," he said quietly to the still form of his friend.

"You were in on this?"

"Mur just told me what she knew a few minutes ago, she didn't know about the baby."

"Have you cast an anti-apparation charm on the kitchen?"

"Am I your best mate?"

"I'll be down, give me a minute." Remus sat a moment longer with his head in his hands, then stood up. Sirius had gone. He went down to the kitchen to find Theda sipping tea with Muriel, talking about nothing.

"The wolf isn't capable of love." He said, talking over their conversation. The women fell silent. Mur watched Theda close her eyes.

She spoke without opening them. "What about the bastard who appears the day the wolf goes away?"

In spite of himself, Remus smiled. "What are your terms, Theda? You've written this whole, complicated story, manipulated every aspect of the evening to your advantage. Why don't you just throw it out the window for once and tell me what you want and I'll tell you if I have it to give?"

Theda opened her eyes to find that Mur was gone and Remus had taken her place in front of her at the table. "It's ridiculously simple, really. I just want you to be happy."

Remus shook his head. "Would you settle for me being willing to make YOU happy?"


"Will you settle for "I'll try?"


Remus brought his fist down onto the table in frustration. "Will you take into consideration that I'll be much LESS happy if you go?" he demanded angrily.

"Yes, if that's really the truth."

He sighed in exasperation and fixed his eyes on the table.

"Remus, weren't you happier when you didn't have to worry about hurting anyone but yourself?"

"No," he said quietly, after a long silence. "No, I really wasn't. I love you."

"You have 29 days to prove it."

"What?" his head snapped up in surprise.

"Manage not to be a complete prat for an entire cycle of the moon, and I'll stay." Theda smiled at him tentatively.

"The full moon's only two weeks away."

"Then in 15 days you'd better not be asking me to break up."

Remus nodded, then swallowed hard. "You were right, you know. I do have an inferiority complex. It's hard to imagine that you could want – "

"You don't have to imagine it, you blind fool. It's right here in front of your face." Theda quickly put her teacup in the sink and came back to the table, sitting down beside him this time. She carefully put her palm to his cheek and led his lips to hers. He kissed her back hungrily. It felt like it had been forever.

He pulled away first. "Will you stay with me tonight?"

Her eyes, shining so brightly a moment before, seemed to dim. "No, Remus. If I hadn't in the first place, none of this would have hurt so badly. I – I need a reason to trust you again."

14 days later...

Muriel shook her head as Theda went upstairs. They'd sat together until the moon rose, then they'd washed their teacups. She'd tried for the past two weeks to talk her out of this. Remus was going to be furious, but Theda wasn't hearing any of her arguments.

When she reached the top of the stairs, Theda took out her wand and unlocked the door to Remus' room. As she'd expected, Padfoot and Moony were having what looked like an all-out war. The wardrobe had been knocked over, which wasn't surprising, since the two over-sized canines were practically bouncing off the walls in their exuberance.

Their activity ceased abruptly, however, as the door inched open, and by the time she was in view they were both staring at her. They exchanged a look, which would have been hilarious if they'd actually been animals. As it was, this confirmed Theda's theory that Remus' mind was fully intact. She smiled.

The large black dog sat down worriedly and looked between Moony and the woman. This wasn't good. Sure enough, Moony's ears went back and he barred his teeth, though he didn't growl. The woman's smile didn't falter.

"Severus says I'm his most gifted potions student since Hermione and Draco competed for top of their class," she said conversationally, as though she was sitting at the breakfast table with them downstairs. "You can't fool me, Remus, there was nothing wrong with that wolfsbane potion."

The black dog's ears drooped as his friend's head fell. He wasn't barring his teeth anymore, and his tail, which had been all poofy and straight in the air a moment before, was now down between his legs. Theda noted this as well. Sirius reassumed his human form and took his leave silently.

When he'd closed the door behind him, Theda stood for a moment, looking thoughtfully at the huge wolf in front of her. He shifted uncomfortably under her gaze. Then she walked to the nightstand and carefully set down the glass of water and bottle of aspirin she'd brought with her. When she turned back to him, she found that he was regarding her calmly, until their eyes met, then he looked back at the floor.

She knelt in front of him, surprised to find herself looking up to address him. "You're beautiful, Remus," she whispered. She reached out a tentative hand and rested it on his shoulder blade. Only then did the wolf meet her eyes.

Theda was awoken at the moment the moon set by a pathetic whimpering, which progressed into stifled cries of pain. She'd slept with her arm curled around the huge wolf, but withdrew it now as he once again became a man. When he fell silent, she reached out a hand to his shoulder again. He was covered in goose bumps.

She sat up and retrieved the medicine she'd brought, knowing that the aches he felt could be soothed. At the sound of ice in the glass, Remus turned and accepted the pills silently. She'd left them for him before, but never brought them herself. He swallowed the water audibly. "Why did you come? Didn't I make it clear years ago that I never wanted you to see me like that?"

"Like what?"

There was silence, during which she helped him pull the covers back and climb under. He moved like an old man with arthritis, but she knew it would wear off. It was usually only a day before he was as good as new again. "I never wanted you to see me as a monster," he whispered, gazing fixedly at the ceiling.

"All I saw was a beautiful wolf with your eyes," she replied, scooting closer and putting a hand on his chest. Too tired to respond, Remus let his eyes fall closed, enjoying the thought that he wasn't alone. He was relieved that she hadn't run screaming from the room. Somehow he'd always thought that's what would happen.

Theda put her leg over his and sighed. This was what he'd needed, the final acceptance he'd craved. Her last conscious thought was whether they'd ever be able to agree on a name for the baby.

Downstairs, Sirius and Muriel sat comfortably together by the fire, rehashing the festivities that had caused this whole mess. They laughed a little at Hermione's blunt assertion that she couldn't sing, which Mur assured him was absolutely true. Sirius confided Harry's secret desire to ask Ginny Weasley to go out with him and they laughed again, thinking of Ginny's song.

"So Moony's going to be a dad," Sirius commented, his voice still light.

"Looks that way." Mur grinned behind her teacup, already knowing where this was headed. "I hope they don't try to move out, though," she added.

"They won't. After all, I left the place to him when I died, and I don't think I ever got it back." Again, quiet laughter filled the room, and Sirius tightened his arm around her shoulders. He was about to start a very awkward question when she turned toward him, her eyes shining.

"Wouldn't it be nice if our first child could be in the same year at Hogwarts as theirs?" she asked, snuggling a little closer.

"You read my mind," he growled, taking the cup from her hand and setting it down carefully beside his.

"I always do," she whispered, grinning as she took his hand to lead him upstairs.


"Crazy" by Patsy Cline (Ava)

"I Want A New Duck" by Weird Al Yankovic music by Huey Lewis and the News (Mur)

"Heaven Help My Heart" by Bjorn and Benny (ABBA) and Tim Rice (from Chess) (Jamila)

"Bitch" by M. Brooks, S. Peiken (Manasa)

"Make Believe" by Oscar Hammerstein II (from Showboat) (Minerva)

"No One Needs To Know" by Avril Lavigne (Ginny)

"Knowing Me, Knowing You" by ABBA (Theda)

Do you know, I am generally not an emotional person (ask Macbeaner, she'll tell you, or JenM). But I hate to see the Muriel series end. I probably would have been alright, if you had not all been so sweet about it. JenM commented on the phone to me one night that Mur and I have a lot in common. I'm still wondering whether or not that is a compliment, but I suppose it is true in some ways. I would like to think I'm not as spoiled, that I don't HAVE to be right all the time, that I wouldn't kill anyone, no matter how angry I was, and that I would never fall in love with more than one man at a time. However, I have never been in those situations, so I can't say. I do know that I don't take a lot of crap, I hate to cry in front of anyone, and I make friends with men more easily than women. Those things I suppose we have in common. Alright, and I'm spoiled. I admit it.

And speaking of spoiled, it's all your fault. YES – YOU, who have been reviewing and telling me what a good job I've done. (Well, most of the time.) I honestly never expected such a great response, but once I got it, I most certainly BEGAN to expect it. And you didn't disappoint. And so without further ado, let me send you all my thanks:

Reviewers for Finding The Lost:

Purple Banana -You've been a faithful reviewer recently - I don't know whether you went back and read all that led up to where we are now, but I appreciate hearing your comments. I'm guessing you're a Gred and Forge fan. I hope that you found your way to "Heaven Help My Heart."

Tarawen - I am so glad to haveyou with me, here at the end of all things. I know that was a lot of words to wade through, but you kept reading. You even went back when you discovered "STO" and read everything else. I've been very blessed to have your comments and suggestions.

Hydra-Star – "…I love it, and if anyone doesn't, then I fear that I must pronounce them crazy." (for "Banished") Flattering child you shall know me… You've been so sweet through all this mess. Even when I was exceedingly unclear about Venus and the voting, you stuck with me. Thanks for your reviews, and for the e-mail conversation we kept up there for a while.

June W – What a joy you've been. I'm afraid I'm guilty of teasing you a great deal on almost every topic we've discussed. I think that you must have found me on Ashwinder first, and even though you're a Sev/Herm fan, you still came to check out my OC, and I really appreciate that. It's also fun to chat with you on LJ. I hope you are sufficiently pleased with Severus' ending. He now has Remus and Sirius for friends (even if he won't admit it) in addition to Mur, as well as a fiancé and son. Surely you are pleased with me now?

Cinnamon – Yes, I'll still write. And the dog reference was to Venus. That just wasn't a very popular series. (I really thought everyone would like the voting, but I got ahead of myself and didn't explain sufficiently, and so no one understood what I meant. I felt pretty dense over that one.) I intend to post most of (not the epilogue) "A Likely Story" on this site. I'll start that one next weekend or so. You'll recognize a few aspects: Lupso will belong to Severus, and have an entirely different character as a result, things like that. I have really appreciated all your encouragement. I always look forward to your reviews – you're obviously well read, and it makes me feel special that you would stick with me so long when that's the case. There are only a gazillion other options for your reading time. Thanks for sparing some of it for me.

Lovergirl – I do believe you're the most recent of all the reviewers for this story. And probably the youngest. I hope you had the sense to skip what you should have skipped, though I'm told I should have been more diligent about warnings. Please realize that writing and real life are very different things, and don't go out and emulate anything I've written. It'll make me feel bad. That said, I appreciate your enthusiasm. I do have another story to post here, but it is not set in the Marauders era. I feel that I've already written the definitive work on the subject (I am so arrogant sometimes. I guess I have that in common with Mur too.KIDDING!), so I just can't make myself come up with anything else. I'm having more luck with post canon. Thanks for reviewing!

Lirael - Bless you my friend. You'vebeen with me a long time. You were reviewing "Sorting Things Out" before I'd even sorted out the rest of the stories! Which means that the extended wait while I did so didn't run you off. And you are one of the few I've never been able to e-mail, because you don't log in! I've tried to find you, too, because you often say something I feel the need to respond to, but then I can't! Thank you for all your generous reviews.

Daisie - I think we ran into each other back before I was begging people to read my work every time I reviewed.(I've since given that up, I promise.)And yet you still came and checked out my stories. I didn't even have to grovel. You've been an invaluable resource. Once in a while you have a cool idea that I can't use, since my stories are complete when I post them. But then I can find ways to fit the idea in years later, when you might not have intended for it to fit. I've really enjoyed reading your reviews. I will always remember you as the first to figure out that, "SIRIUS LIKES HER!"

Copper Heart – I get the feeling you've missed a good bit, and yet you are still complimentary. I surely appreciate your encouragement and kind words. Thank you for all your reviews, and e-mails.

Macbeaner - What can I say? I've gotcha! You're hooked. And all because I begged you to read my stuff. On the other hand, it got us back in contact, and that's cool. Thanks for reading, even if it did turn into a new hobby.

EsScaper - We don't always agree on where the story is headed, but that's cool. I need a dissenting opinion once in a while, or I'll get complacent (and arrogant, though perhaps it's too late?). It's alsonecessary to be called on the carpet to explain things - it keeps me honest. If I can't explain my characters' motivations, what good am I, really? So I appreciate your comments on my weak-ass Sirius, (Who I maintain is the strongest character I write.) even though I can't agree with them.

JenM - Ha! I got you, too. And not only with these (relatively) clean fics, but I've got you stuck in Ashwinder, where angels fear to tread. You're a good friend to have read all that, especially coming late to it as you have. Thanks!

Darkangelgep – I've gotten reviews from you always when I least expect them, and this story is no exception. I'm glad you've stopped by from time to time. Your kind words are always appreciated.

Duj – You began reviewing so recently that I haven't even had an excuse to e-mail you yet! (Possibly you have been lurking and I wasn't aware?) But I'm glad to have you here. I hope you'll take a look at the previous stories (I know, there's a bunch of them – but at least Mixing Things Up and Sorting Things Out), since this one doesn't make much sense without them!

BabyXtreme – I surely appreciate your dedication. You are one of the few, the proud…the people who've waded through all these many stories. I really liked your OC, Aurora, as well, and though I don't have as much time to read as I used to (see June W on that, since it's her demanding more stories that's done it), I still love to find another strong female OC once in a while. I hope you'll keep up your fic, and I'll drop in from time to time and check it out. I love coming back to two or three chapters instead of just one anyway.

Strayct To you I owe the entirety of "0 What Went Before," as it was your complaint that I hadn't explained Muriel well enough in my first story that caused me to write it. You've really been around since the very beginning of the Marauder era fics, and I've appreciated your compliments as well as your criticisms. Thanks so much for all the time you've invested in my stories.

Samhaincat – Since stumbling across Solstice, I have always sought and treasured your opinion on my work. It was such a great story. I need to get caught up with the sequel! I know I was just a newby when I reviewed your story (and probably begged you shamelessly to read mine), and I really appreciate you putting up with me and reading my fics in spite of it all. And you stuck with me, too, which I take as a compliment. Thanks very much for your time these last two years.

Previous to this story, there are/were several reviewers who were also particularly faithful and kind in their reviews. Most notably Weatherwax, who is still working his way through Venus, and is not here yet. Richard, you are one of the fewwhom I've met onlinethat I've corresponded with enough toconsider us friends, and I thank you for that. I've always been flattered by your attention to my fics, and propensity for reviewing each and every chapter, even if it's mostly filler. You've pointed out my typos so I could fix them, as well as the leaps in logic that should have been better explained, and you've encouraged me when no one else was reviewing. You've introduced me to discworld, where I've logged many happy hours since, and Livejournal, at which I've also logged many hours, though I consider that "character building time." Thanks for it all.

Oh, how I wish I could go back through each and every fic and thank the people who reviewed, but we're looking at upwards of a thousand reviews at that point, and I just can't. If you didn't get mentioned, please e-mail me or review anyway, and I'll try to write to you and say hello (and thanks) on the personal level that you deserve. It's unfortunate that I can't - but I have a long story in the works right now that I have to get back to. Thanks, again, to everyone, and I hope to hear from you when A Likely Story starts posting here (within the next few weeks).


aka Daintress