Disclaimer: dramatic sigh No, I still don't own Harry Potter . . . or the incredibly hot Remus Lupin. sighs again

A Second Howl

Harry reached toward the knot-hole in the Whomping Willow with a long stick, trying to immobilize the thrashing tentacles. He couldn't be late, not tonight. A hoarse chuckle from behind stopped him and he nearly dropped the stick. "You're late too, then?" he asked Remus.

"Yes," said Lupin. "I was held up with business for the Order."

Harry sighed. Even though he had defeated Voldemort around a month ago now, the Order was still trying to gather up the remaining Death Eaters, some nearly as fierce as the deceased Dark Lord himself. "Who this time?" he asked conversationally.

"We nearly got Bellatrix Lestrange," said Lupin.


"A junior Death Eater stopped us, that bloke you went to school with. Draco, I think it was?"

"Yeah, Malfoy," Harry growled.

"Harry," Remus warned. "Keep your temper."

"Sorry. Did you get Malfoy?"

"Yup, we were lucky enough to get that. That boy can't do a Shield Charm for his life. It might have cost him his life, actually," said the former DADA professor seriously, taking out his wand and casting an Immobilization Charm on the threatening tree.

"I knew that," said Harry, crawling on his hands and knees through the beginning of the tunnel with Remus right behind him.

"Of course you did," said Lupin, chuckling. "Did you take your potion?" he asked, his voice more serious.

"Yup, that stuff's nasty."

Remus chuckled. "Get used to it," he said.

"I know," Harry said, sighing. "But at least I have someone to spend the full moon with," he said, turning around to grin at his former professor and friend.

"Same for me," Remus said, returning the grin. "Why were you late anyway, Harry?" he asked.

Harry blushed. "Well, er . . . I stopped to talk to Ginny and she was um . . . well, she was worried, so we. . . ."

"Say no more," said Lupin, chuckling. "It was the same with James and Lily."

"So we don't have to stay in here, right?" asked a furiously blushing Harry, as he searched for a change of subject.

"That's right," Lupin confirmed. "After we change, we should be able to run the grounds."

"Good," Harry said. "I don't want to stay holed up in here."

"You're just like James," Remus commented fondly. "He couldn't stand it when he had to crawl in here, especially when it was to save Snape's slimy ass." Harry chuckled. "Forget I said that."

"Forgotten," chuckled Harry. Then he tensed. "Remus, I think it's happening."

"I know, Harry," said the older man. "Don't be scared, just let it happen." Harry nodded, slipping off his clothing while Remus did the same, but he was shaking as the wolf reared inside him. "You're scared, aren't you?" Remus asked. Harry nodded again and Remus moved closer to him. "Don't be," he said seriously. "Just let it take you over. I'll be right here next to you."

"Okay," Harry said, his breathing becoming harder and he allowed the wolf to take over, allowed fur to spring from him, allowed his hands and feet to become large paws and claws to spring from those, and allowed his face to lengthen into a snout while large, razor-sharp teeth sprouted. Harry the wolf looked to the side of him and saw a larger wolf next to him. The wolf had kind amber eyes and its tail wagged as it went up and sniffed Harry over, giving an approving bark. Harry barked back and followed the wolf down the tunnel and across the Hogwarts grounds for a night of adventure.

Note: OK, just to let you guys know, this is a one-shot. I am not planning to continue it when I have a bunch of other great fic ideas bouncing around in my brain. This was just a spur of the moment thing.