Rated: T (PG13)
Disclaimer: HP and all related characters are trademarks of JK Rowling. No animals were harmed in the writing of this fic. No profit is made from this fic and is intended strictly for entertainment purposes. Any similarities to actual people or events are strictly a coincidence.
Summary: Sequel to Alive. A night of celebrations turns out to be more than Tonks and Lupin bargained for. RLNT. WIP
Remus rolled his eyes as he saw the other form on the other end of the floo stand with her feet shoulder width apart and stretch her hands to the sky before bending over to put her palms flat against the rug in front of her. She slowly brought one foot off the floor and then the other until she was at a full handstand. Taking even greater care, she bent her knees until her feet were almost touching her braided hair.
"Okay, now what did you need Remus?" the woman asked, grunting slightly
"Mother," Remus said with feigned patience. "This is important. Could you please stop doing your yoga long enough for me to speak with you?"
"What could be so life threatening or life altering that I need to stop aligning all my chakras?" the woman hummed with almost irritating calmness.
Remus thumped his palm to his forehead and slowly dragged his hand down his face. "Mum, I'm wanting to ask someone to marry me."
That did it. Almost instantly the woman lost her balance and fell into a heap on the floor. After she untangled herself, she got on her knees on the other side of the green flame. Her eyes danced excitedly.
"My Remus is wanting to ask a girl to marry him?!" she squealed, bouncing happily. "Oh this is just fantastic. My little Remus is going to be getting married! What's her name? What's she like?"
"Her name is Nymphadora Tonks, mother," Remus supplied.
His mother slowly repeated Tonks' name then smiled. "Beautiful name that is," she said softly. "I'm picturing… someone that is poised and elegant and very sophisticated."
"She doesn't go by Nymphadora though mother," Remus injected. "She goes by her surname only."
His mother wrinkled her nose slightly as if ratifying the mental image of Tonks in her head. She suddenly smiled brightly. "I'm picturing a tomboy sorta girl, very clumsy, a lot like me."
"I suppose you could say that mum," Remus replied. "But… You always said that if I ever found the girl I thought I could spend the rest of my life with…"
His mother waved her hand and removed one of the many necklaces around her neck. She looked at it and pursed her lips. "Wrong one…" She put the necklace back on and found the one she was looking for before easing it from the tangle of other necklaces and removing it. "There we go!"
His mother's heavily ringed hand thrust through the green flames, causing Remus to jump back in surprise. Remus carefully took the gold chain from his mother's fingers. He dangled the ring that was on the necklace in front of his face curiously. "Is this…?"
"It's the ring your father game me Remus," his mother said with a wistful sigh as she removed her hand from the fire. "And I always said that when you found the one you could give it to her. When do I get to meet her?"
Remus looked down at the ring then back to his mother across the green flames. "Well…" he bit down on his tongue and then sighed heavily. "Soon. We have to plan the wedding quickly because --"
"Let me guess," his mother interrupted. "She's expecting?" When Remus didn't respond, his mother smiled brightly. "In that case… congratulations Remus. And be sure to give her my blessings. And I will be expecting to see some sort of invitation by owl or in the mail or someway. If I don't hear from you within three months, I will find a way to find you and ask you in person why I didn't get an invite yet. I have to get back to my yoga dear otherwise I will get all stiff."
Remus stepped away from the fire and, shortly thereafter, the fire died back down to a normal yellowish gold glow. He held the little ring in the palm of his hand and eyed it warily. As far as he was concerned, the hardest part was half way over…
The other half was actually asking Tonks to marry him.
It started as a gentle tingling sensation between her thighs when she first woke up. As her workday wore on slowly, the sensation seemed to want to strengthen little by little. And being cursed for the next few months, with just sitting at her desk filing paper work for the ones that were going out into the field and actually doing something, was sheer torture.
If one thought that Tonks' uncomfortable squirming was due to being bored, they would be only partially correct. If they thought it was because her hormones were raging with full force, making her daydream about the act that had gotten her pregnant, they would be very much correct. The currently de-commissioned Auror with short, spunky, indigo coloured hair was very much in the mood to call it a day and rush to Grimmauld to see if Remus would be willing to relieve her of the retched tingling.
Then again, she knew that would be rather inappropriate. So, instead, she just pressed the heel of her palm firmly into her upper thigh and slowly massaged the twitching muscles, so that they would be incapable of feeling anything for about two minutes.
When she wasn't filing reports, she was sending out memos to the various departments for information on paternal rights and restrictions. While she waited for the replies, she sat there and rolled her situation over in her mind.
On one hand, she sometimes thought Remus didn't care about the baby. His mood was usually fairly passé when it came to talking about the baby. Then again, Tonks reasoned, Remus was a fairly passé individual… Calm-mannered and full of logic.
On the other hand, however, she could see he did care about the baby. He would scold her when she tried to lift a finger to do the simplest task. He'd tell her trying to lift things that were heavy would strain her and cause her to lose it or, as the case was earlier that morning, raising her arms above her head too much would cause the cord to strangle the baby.
And there was also the secrecy he had about the name he wanted to give the baby. Almost everyday Tonks had taken to playing "guess the name" rather unsuccessfully.
There was also times she would catch him watching her, with a gentleness in his eyes that she knew all too well. She could sometimes see that he cared for her, that the way he fussed over her and about the baby was just his way of showing it. But, usually there was something along the lines of fear that usually rested just in front of the other emotions she saw in his eyes. And though she couldn't really pinpoint what he had to fear, she couldn't help but sometimes be annoyed by it.
What did he have to fear? Did he not know he could easily ask her to do anything and she would? Was he afraid she would change her mind and try to keep the baby away from him? Was he scared that being with a werewolf would make her a point of scrutiny in the magical world?
Tonks jerked out of her thoughts when Kingsley walked into her small working area, folders in his hand. She gave a slight whine when he gave her a slight smile. "Please tell me those aren't reports," she whimpered.
"Actually, these are the things you sent memos out for," he supplied. He looked at the heading on each folder before plopping them in front of her. "Marriage laws, Werewolf Rights and Regulations, Regulations of Magical Creatures, Werewolves and Child Safety Laws, and the latest edition of So You Want to Have Children With A Werewolf. Interesting selections Tonks."
"Thanks," she said flatly.
"I'm guessing it's true then?"
"That you and Lupin are a bit of an item?" Kingsley grinned widely, in a teasing manner.
Tonks looked up at the man. "Actually, no, we're not. At least, he hasn't offered other than asking if I'd marry him if I had to."
"He's got good reason to worry over things like that Tonks," Kingsley said, sitting on the corner of her desk. "You and I know him, we know he'd never hurt anyone for anything. But some of the other people here are a different story. They'd make your life Hell just because of him. And there are so many laws and regulations that apply just because he turns every month that it's ridiculous. He's worrying about you Tonks, about you and the baby. I know if I was in his position that I'd be scared out of my wits of ruining your life."
"But he wouldn't be ruining my life. People are already paranoid about me because I can change my appearance whenever the hell I feel like it, so what would it matter making them a little more so by announcing that I am absolutely in love with the sweetest, smartest, kindest man I have ever met that just happens to be a werewolf." Tonks stood up, with her fists against the wood of her desk. "I don't care what anyone thinks. All that matters is what I think and he thinks about us."
"Good to hear that." Kingsley's grin had widened even further as he pulled another folder from his robe pocket. "All the papers the two of you would be requiring, and I do mean every paper, for making sure the marriage licenses and everything go through smoothly. I even threw in a written statement as a reference that Remus is a fine, upstanding person. And you will also find that a few other Order members took care of the other references he would be needing."
Tonks shook her head to clear it. "So that's what took so long to get the replies from my memos?"
Kingsley nodded. "I caught each one of them. And saw to it myself. So when he decides to pop the big question, the two of you will have no problems." Kingsley leaned over close to her ear and whispered. "And you better be glad you said what you did. He's been standing outside the door for about fifteen minutes debating whether to come in or not."
Tonks' eyes widened. "Pardon?"
Tonks grinned and wiggled her fingers, watching the play of light on the engagement ring she was now wearing. Remus gently captured her hand and gave her fingers an affectionate squeeze. "It changes colour depending on how the light hits it. A very special diamond, rare," Remus explained, inking his quill again. "Mum saw it in a shop run by a older witch, dad bought it a few days later and proposed to her. Mum thought it cost too much, but Dad didn't care because it was what she liked."
"Oh," Tonks pointed to a passage in one of the folders. "Says here that the law that made it so werewolves would have to be married in order to have anything to do with their children was ratified by our current Minister of Magic. So now it's not a requirement by law, as long as there are three references saying the werewolf is an honourable member of society and there is a release form from the other parent."
Remus was quiet a moment before looking at her.
"I was just pointing that out," Tonks said quickly. She gave him a smile. "I still want to marry you."
Remus flushed slightly and went back to the paperwork in front of him. "I know. Hmm, are you willing to provide proof that we have consummated the relationship either before or after the marriage ceremony?"
"I'll show the ass-hats the fact I'm pregnant as proof," Tonks grinned. "Or we can just set up a camera and take a few pictures next time. I'm sure any of the women on the approval committee would be envious of me."
Remus' face flushed a bright shade of red. "I'll just put that we're both willing to give a verbal or written testimony." He cleared his throat several times.
Tonks was starting to feel the familiar tingling in her thighs again as she watched Remus filling out the papers. A small voice in the back of her mind was telling her, in spite of the fact they were at her office it would now be perfectly appropriate for her to do precisely what she had been daydreaming about for most of the day. After all, he'd gone from being just a friend the moment he'd stammered out the question "Will you marry me?"
"Remus, do you ever think about that night," Tonks asked, delicately trailing a finger over his wrist.
"All the time," Remus said in a hushed tone.
"Me too," Tonks rested her chin on his shoulder. She noticed that he'd stopped writing and was just holding the tip of the quill against the parchment. "And quite frankly, I haven't been able to stop thinking about it all day."
"Nymphadora," Remus said with a slight warning tone. "Now is neither the time nor place to be thinking about --" His voice trailed off.
"About what?" Tonks teased, tickling his ear with her fingertip. "Come on, say it. Now's not the time or place to think about what?"
"You're at the Ministry of Magic," Remus blurted. "You… you… You're not… You're not supposed to be trying to … to… Oh dear gods." He grabbed the hand that had made it's way to his pants and pulled it away and tore his neck away from her mouth. "Tonks," he said calmly. "Not here. Not right now. Soon. Just not right now."
Tonks nodded slightly and went back to reading the marriage laws.