Disclaimer: I own very little.
A/N: This chapter will end both this fic and the whole Happy Holidays -series. I hope you have enjoyed what you have read!
...Geez. Seemingly you people know me too well, or I'm simply becoming
unoriginal, seeing how many guessed just what I was planning to do with
So, to those to whom it remains unclear: They used some spell to transfer the triplets from Severus's "womb" into Sirius's. And the Weasley blessing is in the children, remember? Therefore it was transferred to Sirius, too.
Happy Christmas, Family Malfoy
"Do you need anything, Sirius?" Remus asked concernedly from his husband. "Something to eat, perhaps? Or would you like another pillow?" The werewolf watched him with wide golden eyes.
"A moment of peace and silence, if possible," muttered the Grim Animagus. "But as that's most certainly impossible, let it be. I'm perfectly fine at the moment; there's no need to fuss."
"But..." Remus started, sounding helpless, only to be silenced by a stern glance from his husband. So, he grinned weakly. "Sorry," he muttered. "Over the years I've come to think of pregnancy in the family as a potential danger to the carrier. It's hard to get rid of the old habits."
"Well, do try to," Sirius sighed. "I'm more tired because of your 'help' than I'd be without it. The Weasley blessing will keep both me and the babies perfectly healthy." At this, he placed a hand on his round stomach, stroking it gently. "We're perfectly fine, all five of us."
"Well, I'm glad to hear that," Remus said, truly sounding relieved. "Just make sure it stays that way, okay?"
"You bet," murmured Sirius, watching as his husband now returned to his previous pastime of helping Severus to chase down the younger Malfoy children. Merlin, the brats could truly run. Of course, Sirius had offered to help, but this had been firmly and worriedly refused. No no, they would be fine. The Pregnant One should now just sit in his armchair and rest for a bit.
Needless to say, this annoyed Sirius quite a bit. He wasn't that far along, dammit. Sure, he was now having quadruplets -- only one of which was truly his child -- but that didn't mean that he was an invalid. Just because every pregnancy was a death threat to Severus and any multiple pregnancy, well, multiply so, didn't mean that it was the same for him. He wasn't a Snape, after all.
His efforts at getting any other kind of treatment, however, were absolutely futile. So, he just resigned himself to his fate and sank back in the pillows in the luxurious armchair, watching as the older children played with their new toys. Meanwhile Lucius was having hard time trying to make sure that the youngest ones, who were napping, actually stayed asleep and weren't startled awake every other minute. Better forced leisure than that, surely -- Juliah and Severah were easy enough, but Sirius most certainly didn't envy the blond for having to keep little Remus and Sirius asleep. Those two were, well, little monsters, as embarrassing as it was to admit something like that about the namesakes of his husband and him.
At last, however, something vaguely resembling peace and silence fell to the badly suffered Malfoy Manor. The children from the not too forcefully protesting Keith and Mariah to the overeager Remus and Sirius were currently playing outside, Lucius having given up in hopes that the twins might actually sleep at night. As he didn't see anybody nearby to stop him, Sirius quickly got up and sneaked to the balcony.
"Got enough of being confined inside, I see," said a calm voice, startling him a bit. Turning to look at his side, Sirius saw Lucius standing at the other end of the long balcony.
"Exactly," he muttered. "And don't you even try to make me go back. I need some fresh air."
"Sure you do." A brief smirk touched the blond's lips. Then it turned into a small yet genuine smile, directed at Sirius. "Thank you," Lucius said quietly. "Thank you for doing this for us."
"Hey, anything for a friend, right?" the Gryffindor asked, grinning a bit. "And besides, we should thank you. Because of you we are offered the chance to have more children of our own safely and securely. And not as uncontrollably as with you, either; with Remus's sterility and the blessing having used most of its powers on Severus and your babies, normal contraception should work for us as it is supposed to do. You, however, will have no more children after these three -- unless you decide to go through the magical conception route, which is probably not a good idea with all your past experiences."
"Well, I do think we have enough children as it is," the blond chuckled. Then, however, his smile faded away. "I won't lie by telling that I haven't thought about that," he said quietly. "And even though we certainly have our own share of children, it is kind of sad to think that after these three we will never have another baby, another little beginning of life." Then he added on a lighter tone, "Well, most probably I'm more than fed up with little children by the time the triplets grow out of their diapers!"
"Lucius, old friend, you won't have to worry about things like that for long," Sirius said amusedly. "By the time these triplets enter Hogwarts, your private army has most probably taken over the whole Wizarding World! In fact, I'm beginning to think that's your ultimate plan. Just think about it -- fifteen people in all kind of respectable jobs like professors, politicians, lawyers, and assassins, manipulating people and supporting each other, all striving for the good of one family. That's the perfect Slytherin vision!"
"You obviously have been blind and deaf all these past years," Lucius said dryly. "It would take a life or death situation to make our children work together, and even then they'd argue. But of course I didn't see that in my plans," he continued. "I purposefully have kept my husband pregnant all the time just to create a personal army, uncaring about the dangers I've put him through by that."
Sirius was silent for a moment. Then he said quietly, "Sorry, Lucius. That was a bad joke."
"It's okay." The blond then gave him a scrutinizing glance. "You're not cold, are you?"
"Oh, no," moaned the darkhaired man. "Don't you start that, too! Remus is already fussing around me all the time like I was going to drop dead the moment he leaves me alone! That's why I came here, you know -- to escape him, and you all. No, I'm not going to catch cold or pneumonia, nor will I freeze to death."
"Well, I have even more right to fuss over you than Remus does," Lucius replied, raising an eyebrow. "You may be his husband, but three of the children you're carrying are mine, while only one is his. Therefore, I have three times the right to fuss over you as he does. It's pure logic."
"But he's my husband," Sirius whined. "And I was first pregnant with his child! Your triplets are just late additions to our baby!" He crossed his arms over his chest just above the slightly rounded stomach.
"All right, all right," Lucius chuckled. Then, however, he turned again just as serious as only he could be. "Even if the children were all yours and Remus's, I still would worry," he said then quietly. "You are my friend, Sirius, and you should know that. My own triplets just give me the perfect excuse."
A small smile crossed now the Gryffindor's lips. "Say it like it is," he teased lightly. "You've got so used to being worried over Severus that you can't be around a pregnant person without worrying."
"Well, there's that, too," Lucius admitted, taking his half-joke as a completely serious statement. What, Sirius supposed, it had been in the end. And then, neither of them said anything for a while.
A wistful smile curled Severus's lips as he ran a hand over his now perfectly flat stomach. "Three months," he said quietly. "If everything had gone well, I would now be three months along."
"Confined in bed and in danger of death," added the werewolf by his side seriously. He had never been one to forget reality; his life had taught him to always remember both sides of things, good and bad alike.
"Most probably, yes," admitted the darkhaired man calmly. "But I might have survived, at least."
"All blessings and curses wear out by time," Remus said quietly. "And, when opposed with the strong Snape curse in your veins, your Weasley heritage was struggling to do what it was supposed to. I have no doubt that, had your pregnancy continued, we would have been unable to save you and the triplets all. At least some of you would have been lost, if not all. You wouldn't want to do that to Lucius and your kids, would you?" Casting a sideways glance at his friend, he continued softly, "Pregnancy has never been easy on you, Severus... And one more time would have been too much to you. Don't mourn it so."
"I do know that going on with the pregnancy might have cost my life," the Slytherin replied with an equally soft voice. "And you're right, I wouldn't want to do that to my family. But still... it feels so... strange. It is truly strange to think that I will never again have a child inside myself."
"Well, you have had your own fair share of that experience," reminded his friend with a small smile. "Let the others go through it now and concentrate on enjoying the kids you already have."
A snort escaped Severus's lips now. "Enjoy? Beware, you mean," he said dryly. "If I didn't know better I'd swear that the brats are not mine at all. Nothing that wild might have come from me."
"And this comes from a man who hid his pregnancy at school when he was sixteen, kidnapped his supposed sister, actual daughter from his parents and married before he graduated," Remus said levelly. "Never mind having more children than any other British Wizarding family in my knowledge and doing all this against his parents' exact wishes. Oh, no, Severus, you do all by the rules."
"I maybe haven't been very traditional," his friend replied, "but I sure as Hell didn't run around screaming when I was a kid. No, I sat quietly and didn't make a sound unless I was asked something."
"Well, would you prefer your children behaving perfectly and remembering you like you remember your own parents?" asked Remus. At seeing the Slytherin's grimace, he smiled a bit. "I didn't think so. Now, forget it. All children are wild by nature; it would be abnormal for them to be otherwise. If you get too frustrated, look at Janus and thank Merlin that he's not like the younger twins."
At that, Severus actually laughed. "Oh, yes," he chuckled. "Whatever possessed me to make two of my children the namesakes of two Marauders, I most certainly don't know. I should have known better."
"Yes, you should," Remus replied. Then they both grinned at each other.
In the end, despite all their problems, life was actually very good.
"Congratulations, Severus and Lucius," Poppy Pomfrey said with a smile, stepping into the room. "Sirius has just given birth to two girls and two boys. We're currently busy trying to find out which ones are yours."
The two Malfoys broke into smiles, giving each other excited glances. This was a unique experience to them. Sure, this was not the first time they had got children. However, to Lucius this was the first time he did not worry, other than the time he'd been pregnant, and then he had most certainly not enjoyed the experience. Severus, on the other hand, was used to extreme pain and fear of death, and the one time Lucius had given birth he had been driven almost insane with worry because of his own bad memories. Now, however, there was no need to worry. There had been no problems at all to Sirius during the pregnancy, the Weasley blessing taking care of both him and the children, and besides Remus knew what he was doing. He wasn't called the best midwife in the medimagical world for nothing, after all.
Of course, this was a bit different from your usual childbirth. They were not at St. Mungo's outside a sterile delivery room full of mediwitches and mediwizards. Instead, Sirius had just given birth in one of the rooms of the Malfoy Manor, having resided in the few nearest rooms ever since he was too far along and too big to even walk in the stairs. Even though Remus nowadays was most certainly allowed to enter any delivery room he wanted, thanks to the removal of most of the werewolf restrictions, Sirius had flat-out refused to go to the hospital. He had given birth to Keith outside of the hospital, he had said, and would not go there now, either. Poppy and Remus were all the assistance he needed.
Now Lucius and Severus followed the mediwitch to the next room. Upon entering they saw Sirius lying on a large bed, looking very tired but happy, three little babies on his lap. Remus was holding the fourth baby, in the progress of casting a paternity charm on it.
"Paterna Lucius Malfoy," the werewolf muttered, and Severus involuntary shuddered at the memories this phrase brought up. Lucius grasped his hand reassuringly, smiling as the baby was bathed in white light. "Now, that's it," Remus muttered, placing the baby on Sirius's lap and taking another. "This one has to be ours... Paterna Remus Lupin." And, true enough, this child was now in turn enveloped in the white glow.
"So we have a little girl." Sirius smiled, then turned towards the Malfoys. "And you have one girl and two boys more... And, by the way, you owe me a big time for making me go through this."
"Your husband suggested it, and you accepted," Lucius reminded him calmly, taking one of the children he knew to be his. The child looked back at him with serious black eyes half hidden by its eyelids, a tuft of black hair on his head. "But we do owe you. So, which one of them is the girl?" he asked then.
"The redhead," Remus said with a small smile. "She's the second oldest. The one you're holding is the oldest, and the other boy is the youngest." He nodded at the two other babies, now held in Severus's arms.
"So, what are we going to name them, Severus?" asked Lucius, turning towards his husband. Seeing the darkhaired man's shocked expression, he frowned. "Severus? Is something wrong?" he asked.
"Wrong? Not... not really," muttered Severus. "It's just... look." And he turned around so that his other side was towards Lucius, nodding at the child he held on that arm, the little boy. Lucius looked. And gasped in amazement, staring at the child. Now, this was something special.
The child opened its eyes a bit, revealing baby blue eyes that would later turn grey, like his female triplet's, Lucius had noted. The adults, however, were not interested in his eyes. Instead they all looked in slight wonder at the boy's head. There, so thin and colourless that Remus and Sirius had probably missed it at their first look at the baby, grew a few strands of soft, blond hair.
"Well, now it has finally been done," Lucius said quietly, a tiny smirk tugging at the corner of his mouth. "Finally we have a child no Malfoy ancestor would be ashamed to look at -- the self-righteous bastards."
"Well," muttered Sirius, "took you certainly long enough, that." Then, he smiled. "Now, what about telling the older brats about the new additions?" he suggested cheerfully, then yawned. "And while you try to keep them from barging in here and startling the babies, I could most certainly use some rest."
"You do that," Remus said, smiling, then leant down to place a kiss on his husband's forehead, their daughter held securely in his arms. "Thank you, Sirius," he whispered. "Thank you for once again making my dreams come true." He then pulled back a bit, smiling gently at the one he loved more than anything. "By the way, do you think we could already tell my parents about their second grandchild?"
Now, the Animagus still managed a grin despite his exhaustion. "Actually, I'd like to keep it a secret until we visit them the next time," he muttered. "But as that's not really an option... Sure, go ahead. I'll sleep."
Again, Remus smiled, using his free hand to pull the covers better over his husband. Then he placed their still unnamed daughter in her crib next to the three newborn Malfoys, glanced at Poppy, who smiled at him, and then followed Severus and Lucius out of the room to inform the elder children.
Some time later Sirius frowned in his sleep, disturbed by the dream his subconsciousness had woven from past memories. Just as Poppy noticed this and was about to wake him up, however, his frown disappeared, making way to a small, almost hesitant smile gracing his lips. And then, very quietly, almost soundlessly, the darkhaired man whispered something in his sleep. Hearing his words, the mediwitch smiled as well, knowing that a cycle had now been completed and an old injustice righted.
"Happy birthday, Moony," had Sirius muttered.
A/N: Yes, it is indeed possible for one of their kids have blond hair despite Severus's dominant hair colour genes. It is very rare, but sometimes this happens; the dominant gene disappears from the chromosome, and the recessive one shows up.
Anyway, thank you for reading this fic (and probably the others in the series, too). I'd really like to know what you thought about it, or to see you again in regards to some other fic of mine!