Becoming Familiar with a Man of Misery Final Chapter
When Eli winked into Isadora's flat, the first thing he was aware of was the sound of loud panting and whimpering, like that of a large, thirsty dog. He looked around and saw a robed figure in front of the Mistress' work desk, moving oddly. He appeared to be humping the desk. The figure seemed to pause, straining forward, then the elf heard a feminine howl, then a screech, then a series of shrieks as the cloaked figure began to move faster, the fabric of his robes billowing with his motions
That was the Mistress' voice! Suddenly the elf realized that the strangely panting robed wizard was performing the in-outie on Isadora. From the sound of her, he was forcing himself on the witch.
The elf's ears flattened and he was about to blast the robed stranger away from his Mistress, when he heard her cry, "Yes, Remus! Oh gods, yes! Harder!" and the heavy oak desk itself began to scrape across the floor as the wizard turned on the power, thrusting into the shrieking witch with abandon, growling dangerously, following the moving piece of furniture and not missing a stroke.
Eli lowered his clawed hand slowly, realizing his Mistress liked what was happening and letting the doglike wizard do the very violent in-outie to her. The elf put the basket on the computer table, took one more look at the wildly copulating couple and winked out.
He reappeared in the living room of his home. Severus and Hermione were sitting side by side on the couch, playing with the babies. Albus had given him the afternoon off. It seems someone had released some Finnywicks in the lower dungeons and it had to be sealed off and fumigated. Finnywicks were magical bloodsucking fleas with voracious appetites. They bred quickly, and if enough got on a person, he could be sucked dry of every bit of blood within minutes. Nasty little buggers.
Severus was nuzzling little Eli with his large nose, and the baby had a lock of his hair locked in his fist, trying to bring it to his mouth. His father held his head a bit back so the child couldn't do it, wincing a little and smirking at the baby's strength. Hermione was doing little belly waggles to Demetrius, who gurgled happily as his mother kissed and blew on his little tummy.
Severus looked up and saw Eli. He frowned slightly, taking his hair gently out of little Eli's fist and straightening.
"That was a very quick trip Eli. Wasn't Mother there?" he asked the Elf.
Eli looked at his Master.
"Yes, Master. The Mistress was there, but was very busy. No time to visit," Eli said evasively.
He didn't want to tell him his mother was very actively engaged in some serious in-outie when he arrived. He didn't think Severus would have responded well.
Hermione stared at Eli. She had a feeling what she knew what Isadora was doing when he arrived at her flat. She glanced at Severus, who was scowling.
"Was Remus there too?" he asked Eli, an eyebrow arched.
Remus. Oh. Was that the wizard's name? Yes, that was the name his Mistress called out.
"I thinks so sir. There was a wizard there but Eli did not look good at him. He was very busy also. So Eli left the basket and comes home, sir," the elf replied.
Severus studied him.
"What exactly were they doing, Eli?" the Potions Master asked him, placing little Eli in his carrier.
"They was moving the big desk sir," the elf said quickly.
Well, it wasn't a lie. As long as the Master didn't ask the elf how they were moving it, Eli had managed to cover up the Mistress' in-outie session quite well.
Severus relaxed. So they were moving furniture around. His mother's oak desk was large and heavy. No doubt they were indeed very busy with it. It would take a lot of muscle to move that piece.
"Well, thank you for delivering the basket, Eli," he said, settling back on the couch.
The elf bowed low.
"You is quite welcome, Master," the elf replied, feeling like wiping his brow in relief.
Hermione wasn't fooled however. She had a pretty good idea how that desk was moving around. She couldn't help smirking at the elf's quick thinking. No matter how Severus pretended to accept his mother's dalliance with Remus…the idea of them shagging at this very moment was sure to rankle him. She put Demetrius in his carrier.
Eli walked up to the twins eagerly.
"May Eli take the little Masters to the nursery, Mistress?" he asked, looking down at the babies with love in his wide brown eyes.
"Yes, Eli. We've already fed and changed them. You can put them in their cribs," she replied, smiling at the doting elf.
"Yes, Mistress," Eli said, picking up the carriers and winking out.
Hermione sat back also, and she and her husband sat in companionable silence for a few minutes. Then a scowl appeared on Hermione's face, and she growled a little. Severus looked over at her.
"Something bothering you, wife?" he asked her.
"Yes. University," she said in a hard voice.
Severus' eyebrows rose. He'd been waiting for this. Hermione was about to shift into revenge mode.
"Severus, they tried to drive me out of school and remove every opportunity I had for success because I was pregnant. I was fortunate because I had you, but there are a lot of witches in the same condition that have no one to stand up for them. They lose everything when they decide to have their children without a father in the picture. It's not fair, Severus," she said vehemently, "Somebody has to do something about this…bring the wizarding world out of the dark ages."
"That someone being you?" he asked her quietly.
"Possibly," Hermione said. "I need to do some research first. Find out exactly how many single mothers there are in the wizarding world, where they live and work, and how they are surviving. I think the first thing to be done is get them together and have them reveal via pensieve who the father of each one of their children are, then seek recourse. Support. Maybe some sort of class action suit. Then, set up some kind of trust or foundation for women who find themselves alone, pregnant or trying to raise a family on their own. One that will help them find jobs, shelter, help them out with food, medical treatment, daycare, training or whatever they need as they try to get on their feet. Then we need to increase public awareness…let the public know how hard these women work to raise their families and convince them to be supportive. Maybe profile a few. If I can get a few influential people to speak out on their behalf…"
"Albus would definitely assist you with that," Severus said thoughtfully.
Personally, the Potions Master didn't believe single mothers should be punished for bringing new life into the world alone, or ostracized because they chose to raise their children without their fathers. If it had been acceptable when he was a child, perhaps his mother would have taken him and left, rather than remain with his abusive father. But she had nowhere to go and no resources to help her. It would be a good thing to change that. It might help other abused women to find the strength to leave their situation.
"And we need to focus on institutions who encourage unfair practices against them, show them in a bad light. Like the university, for example. Make them air their dirty laundry and turn the public against them. Set up some debates. Get on the wizarding wireless network and in the newspapers. Have public protests," she said, warming up.
Severus listened to his wife strategize, shaking his head slightly. Hermione was a force to be reckoned with and thought on a large scale. Dean Wankton and his crew were in for a bit of hell on earth, to be sure.
"I'll have to go to the Ministry archives," Hermione said, "There are records of births there as well as statistics. Also, check the hospitals to find new mothers. I bet Molly Weasley would help me talk to the witches. She loves children."
Molly was also a force to be reckoned with. She was the original Mother, loving, protective and courageous.
"You could put out a call for volunteers," Severus suggested. "I'm sure there are many sympathizers who would be willing to donate time to make the lives of these witches and their children better."
"Yes," Hermione said, her eyes shining. Then she turned to her husband.
"Do you think I can really do this, Severus? Make a difference?" she asked him.
He studied her for a moment. Hermione changed him, and he had been a hard, hard case.
"Wife, I believe you can do anything you put that brilliant mind to. Coupled with your heart, and your innate stubbornness and irritating habit of refusing to back down, I don't see how you can fail. True, it might be a slow start, but you are dedicated to what you believe, if nothing else. Yes, I believe you can make a difference, Hermione," he said sincerely.
Hermione threw her arms around his neck and hugged him tightly, then kissed him deeply. The Potions Master couldn't help reacting. When she pulled away, he looked at her rather hungrily.
"I was wondering, wife, if you would consider making a small donation to the cause of "Satisfying Severus Snape," he purred at her. "It is a charitable cause, guaranteed to make you feel wonderful about contributing…though I don't believe it will be tax deductible. However, I take my payments in 'pounds' rather than galleons."
He smirked at her lustfully.
"Don't worry about the exchange rate. I'll handle that," he added, arching an eyebrow at her.
Hermione couldn't help smiling at her husband. He was so naughty…but so yummy.
"Where do I make this 'donation' Severus?" she asked him.
The Potions Master rose and offered his hand to his wife. Hermione took it, and he pulled her up, wrapping an arm around her shoulder and walking her down the hall.
"Just step into my office," he said silkily, guiding her toward the bedroom.
"There will be very little paperwork."
Through a few discreet inquiries, Isadora found a small secluded farm that had a reinforced barn to let. She and Remus visited the owner. His name was Rubin Fezwig. He was a wizard who lived off the land, and grew acres of vegetables which he sold at market. His crops were huge. He was an older wizard of about a hundred, ruddy and strong in the way of men who worked the earth. He had sharp blue eyes and an easy way about him. He invited the couple into his simple home and gave them both a glass of fresh lemonade and sat down at the kitchen table with them.
Isadora explained exactly why they needed the barn during the full moon. Rubin looked at Remus.
"Werewolf eh?" he said, his blue eyes looking Remus up and down.
"Yes, sir," Remus replied.
The farmer looked thoughtful, then said, "I built that barn to hold my son, Rubin Jr. Werewolf bit him when he was nine. Caught him drawing water at night. Would've killed him if I hadn't run the creature off. Nothing could be done for him. So I built the barn to hold him when the full moon came on him. Horrible thing, werewolf transformation. They don't remember no one, would kill their own mother when they're like that. Anyway, things was hard for Junior when he got older. Took wolfsbane to help but social-wise he couldn't interact with other wizards and witches. They shunned him. And he couldn't get a good job. He was my boy but didn't love the land like I did. Didn't want any dirt under his nails. Then he fell in with a bad crowd, all werewolves, making fast hard cash illegal. Eventually they were tracked down by Aurors and tried to fight. My son was killed more than fifty years ago. Hard thing. Hard thing," Rubin said, his blue eyes glistening a bit.
"Oh, I'm so sorry, Mr. Fezwig," Isadora said, "That's so sad."
Rubin looked at Remus sharply.
"How do you make your living?" he asked the werewolf.
"I wash dishes at an inn, and make muggle travel arrangements for witches and wizards," he replied quietly.
"Honest work, then," Rubin said.
"Yes sir," Remus replied, "I've always done honest work."
"You are a smart lad then. Good character. You must have had times when you didn't have work," the farmer said.
"Yes sir. Then I would go door to door and do odd jobs for money, food or shelter," Remus replied. I had a place to go transform, and I have access to wolfsbane to keep my human mind relatively intact. But I am still dangerous transformed."
The farmer nodded. He looked at the couple.
"I tell you what. I like you folks. This werewolf is trying to live with his condition the best way he can without giving in to the temptation of crime. I only wish my son had that strength. I'll let the barn to you for ten galleons during the full moon. It's only one night a month after all," the farmer said.
Ten galleons was a real deal. But still, they had to see the barn first.
"Can we see it before we make a decision, Mr. Fezwig?" Isadora asked him.
"Sure you can," the farmer replied getting up from the table and leading them out of the house and across the field. A small barn stood isolated in the middle of a cleared field. Rubin pushed the door open and with his wand turned up some glass encased hurricane lamps. Isadora and Remus peered around.
The barn was bisected with sturdy steel bars that ran the length of it. A door sat in the middle of the bars with a heavy locking system. Behind the bars was nothing but strewn hay and a concrete slab sunk in the floor from which several long manacles snaked out. Isadora's eyes went wide as she thought of her lover chained in this dismal place.
Remus walked up to the door and inspected the locking system, then opened it and walked over to the concrete slab, looking it over. He looked up at Rubin.
"Is it charmed?" he asked the farmer.
The farmer nodded.
"Yep, nothing can pull it up," the farmer replied, "The manacles are charmed too. Will fit any size wrist and ankles and hold until the transformation ends. You can yank on them all night and they won't give, and even if you did get loose, you couldn't get through the bars or the walls. All charmed too."
Remus yanked on the chains. They were secure.
"This is perfect. We'll take it, Mr. Fezwig," he said, looking at Isadora for confirmation. She nodded, though she looked rather stricken. It was an awful place. But Remus looked pleased.
The werewolf took out his purse and paid Rubin for five months worth of rental. It was his own money. He now had an account at Gringotts where his commissions were automatically deposited. Isadora had been right, they were quite generous commissions. The first thing Isadora had done when his money came in, was take him shopping. Remus meekly followed her from store to store, loaded down with packages as she selected his wardrobe. New robes, trousers and shirts. As accepting of her choices as Remus was, he took a stand on boxers. He didn't wear them.
Now he looked like a proper wizard. He was amazed at how much better people treated him, now that he didn't wear shabby clothes. He couldn't help but think how shallow they all were, however. He was still the same man after all.
He and Isadora thanked Rubin and apparated back to her flat. Only she and Remus could enter this way…with the exception of Eli, who didn't apparate but used elf magic. Remus noticed immediately that Isadora was very quiet.
"What's wrong, Isadora?" he asked gently, walking up to her and taking both her hands in his own.
The witch looked up at him, her eyes glistening.
"That barn is so horrible. It's like a dungeon Remus. I don't like the idea of you being incarcerated like that," she said.
Remus gave her a small, sad smile.
"It's better that I be locked up than running loose, Isadora. Transformed, I am very dangerous. I could kill someone…even you," he said softly. "I've never killed or bitten anyone yet, and I want to keep it that way. The barn is perfect. It is only for one night, Isadora."
Then Remus thought about something.
"Isadora, come sit down," he said, walking her to the sofa and helping her down, before sitting next to her, his gentle eyes meeting hers, "I want to talk to you about the days before and after my transformation. Now that I live here, and am involved with you, I am a bit worried," he said.
"Why?" Isadora asked him.
Remus sighed. He hadn't told her about the physical changes his body went through before transformation, specifically how he grew a foreskin and his organ became larger and more sensitive. The werewolf also became more aggressive sexually. More demanding. She was aware his mating instinct increased but not the rest of it. He needed to tell her.
"Well, I go through changes Isadora. I become more wolf-like in my urges…and there are also physical and behavioral changes that I feel you will find unpleasant and unattractive. My gentle nature is greatly compromised directly before and after the full moon, at least sexually. And…and…I grow a foreskin," he said.
Isadora's eyebrows rose, and her eyes flicked to his lap reflexively.
"You mean a …" and she made a draping motion with her hand, "a foreskin, as in covering everything?"
Remus nodded. Isadora was curious. She had never seen Remus with a foreskin.
"Will you show it to me?" she asked him.
Remus looked at her. She didn't understand.
"Isadora, when I am in that state, if I show it to you, I'm going to want to use it on you. My behavior changes, Isadora. I will become what you don't like. Forward, demanding and even controlling. What worries me most is that we are involved, and my animal half recognizes you as my mate. Usually during this time I can show restraint toward females because technically they aren't mine, so I am not possessive or territorial concerning them. I can't say the same about you, Isadora. Most likely if I stay here, I will want to take you constantly and I would be very aggressive and demanding…the things you hate in a wizard. Now that you've accepted me, I don't want to lose you, Isadora."
"But you won't lose me, Remus," she replied.
Remus shook his head in negation. He would act much as her husband had toward her, but without the beatings. When he took her without the influence, he felt tender towards Isadora despite the way he possessed her, and she could feel that tenderness. It was clear to the witch that he was primarily focused on giving her pleasure, satisfying her. He derived his own pleasure from doing it successfully.
When near the full moon, he suspected all he would feel would be lust and be interested in his own fulfillment. He would use Isadora's body rather than worship it as he did now. He didn't want her to experience him that way. She deserved to be treated with more than animal lust.
He looked at her. He needed to make her understand they needed to separate at this time.
"Anyway, I think Severus expects me to still honor the three day rule," the wizard said, "and I think it best too. I still have my room in Knockturn alley. I think I should stay there, apparate to the barn when the transformation comes, then return there until I normalize, then return here."
"Surely Severus doesn't expect you to adhere to the three day rule now that we are involved!" Isadora said angrily. "If you do, that means you will be gone for a week out of each month, Remus."
He took her hands and kissed one after the other.
"Better I be away from you a week, then ruin what we have, Isadora. When I take you, good feelings flow through me. Tender feelings. All I want to do is please you, hear you tell me you love what I do to you. Hear you call my name. Kiss and lick you all over your beautiful body, and let you know I appreciate you. During those three days, all I will think of are my own selfish needs and my own satisfaction. You'll become a vessel, Isadora, something on which to slake my desire. I don't want that and I know you don't want that. I want what we have to remain untouched. Can you understand that? I don't want to see reproach in those lovely black eyes. Or gods forbid, hurt." he said gently, willing her to understand him.
Isadora looked at her lover. He was such a sweet, caring man. His description of what he felt and wanted when he took her had caused a little heat to flare in her belly. Clearly Remus thought that he would mistreat her if he stayed during his changes. If he did mistreat her, she knew most likely her feelings would change toward him, and they would cease to be lovers. Isadora wasn't willing to suffer mistreatment, no matter how attracted she was to the wizard or how good a lover he was. She conceded it would be best if Remus did stay away rather than risk what they had.
"All right Remus," she said softly.
The wizard sighed with relief. He had been worried Isadora would want him to stay and show her the difference in him. She wouldn't have liked it and he would have lost her.
"Thank you for understanding Isadora," he said, kissing her gently on the lips.
Isadora looked at him, her dark eyes getting a bit darker.
"Surely you can thank me better than that, Remus," she said, her voice thick with desire.
"I think I can," he replied, easing her down on the couch, flipping her over and gently pulling her to her knees.
The wizard hiked up her dress and eased her knickers down, caressing and kissing her back and buttocks as he worked at his trousers, growling low in his throat.
After lapping at her heat with his long, supple tongue, Remus soundly thanked Isadora for being so understanding.
Severus began working on Remus' cure immediately. The sooner he found it, the safer his mother would be with the werewolf. He checked in with Isadora and found to his dismay that the wizard had moved in with his mother. The Potions Master protested, but Isadora showed him rental receipts and Remus' bedroom.
Severus looked at the neatly made bed and seriously doubted that the werewolf actually slept in the room. But as long as he was pulling his own weight, and not living off his mother, then there was little he could do about it. But his mother looked very happy, and he had to grudgingly admit that Remus was good for her.
As he was leaving, Remus walked into the flat. The two wizards looked at each other. Severus' black eyes raked over the tall, lean wizard. What he noticed first was his clothing. He was wearing new robes. His hair was neatly trimmed as well. And he noticed that the werewolf no longer had that pale, drawn, tired look that accompanied the malady. He wondered if his mother's affection and care had made the werewolf better. Hermione was always saying everything responded to love, and though he hoped his mother was not in love with the werewolf, maybe her attentions helped him in a physical way. Also, not having to repress himself any longer might also be having a beneficial effect. Well, he certainly looked stronger, that made Severus worry less concerning the cure. No doubt it would be very, very painful. If the werewolf were healthy, he would survive it.
"It seems my mother has had a Svengali effect on you, Remus. I can't remember you ever looking so…presentable. You did buy those robes yourself?" Severus said silkily. He knew most likely Remus did. He was earning decent money now.
"Yes, I did, Severus. I buy everything I need myself, you needn't worry," Remus said evenly. "Well, I pay for it, anyway."
Severus knew immediately why Remus amended his statement. More than likely his mother had handpicked every article of new clothing he owned.
"I also see you've turned my mother's flat into a boarding house for wayward werewolves," the Potions Master said distastefully.
"I let a room from her, yes," Remus said. "But I pay rent and share costs for food and utilities "
Severus' eyes swept over him.
"Considering your dubious relationship with my mother, Remus, you should be paying for everything," he said, frowning at the werewolf.
"Give me time, Severus," Remus replied, "I'd have no problem supporting your mother. It would please me greatly to do it. But somehow, I think your mother would have a problem with it. She is very independent."
"Yes. My wife is also cursed with that malady," Severus said, rolling his eyes as he pictured a scowling Hermione with her hands on her hips, being mutinous. Then he looked at Remus. "Speaking of maladies, are you honoring the three day rule?"
"Yes, I still have my flat in Knockturn Alley. I will be staying there for the pre and post transformation stages. I have also rented a small, equipped barn in the country to house me when I do transform. So I will be far from Isadora," the werewolf told him.
Severus arched an eyebrow at him.
"The barn in the country is fine, but Remus, for all intents and purposes you have a…a…mate now." It was extremely hard for him to refer to his mother as the werewolf's mate. Arrrgh. But he continued, "Do you really think you will be able to stay in Knockturn Alley when you know my mother is here?" Severus asked him, his eyes narrowed. "You may be able to get through the first night all right, and possibly the second, but the urge to mate will be strongest on the third night. You may be driven to seek her out."
Remus looked stricken. He hadn't thought about that. Severus noted the wild look of distress in the wizard's eyes. It was clear that he really didn't want to be near his mother at this time. That was good. It showed he cared about her.
Remus looked at the dark wizard rather wild-eyed.
"Gods, Severus…you're right. As long as I know she is here…what am I going to do?" he asked the Potions Master plaintively.
Severus studied him a moment. Then he asked him a question.
"Remus, what do wizards do when they have a treasure they want protected?"
"They put up wards," Remus replied, understanding. "But I can't put up the ward, because I will be able to take them down. And if I come and plead with Isadora, she might be tempted to take them down as well."
Severus looked at him.
"It seems, Remus that my mother's infatuation with you has effectively made her a prisoner for six and a half days out of the month. I will have to provide the wards to protect both of you from yourselves until I can complete the cure. I will speak to my wife about it. She is an accomplished Spell Maker, possibly she can design or adapt a few wards that will react to your magical signature. Perhaps, the flat can be warded by day so my mother can work, and in the evenings she can come and stay with my family. If you come there, Remus…I assure you, your tail will be more than singed."
"You can block floos. When Isadora arrives, you can simply shut the flat's access off. I don't know where you live, Severus. I have never been there. Most likely I would come here in search of her, and if her floo is blocked, then I will have no way to follow her," Remus said.
Severus looked at him. He wished the werewolf would try to follow his mother when under the influence of his transformation. He'd blast him into powder. That would solve everything. But…he was sure his mother would never speak to him again.
"Very well. I will leave you to broach the subject of additional protection with my mother. If I were to do it, she would accuse me of interfering or being over-protective. Make her see how important this is. In the meantime I will consult with my wife and see what she thinks she can do. I will get back to you as soon as possible," Severus said, turning and heading for the door.
"Severus?" came Remus' soft voice.
The Potions Master turned, frowning.
"Thank you," the werewolf said sincerely.
Severus scowled at him.
"Let me make one thing perfectly clear to you, werewolf. I would be doing nothing, and I mean nothing to help you if not for my mother. If you owe anyone thanks, it is her," he said darkly, then turned, disillusioned himself and exited the flat.
Remus looked after the Potions Master. The dark wizard might be doing everything under duress, but Remus was still grateful to the wizard. He turned to see Isadora sitting on the couch. She had heard everything.
"So I need to be protected from you in addition to being away from you," she said looking at Remus.
"Yes, Isadora, I will most likely come looking for you," he replied. "Given the nature of our relationship, there is a good chance you might let me in if Severus does not provide wards you nor I can take down."
He walked over to the sofa and sat down next to the witch.
Isadora looked at him.
"Do you think you are that irresistible to me, Remus, that I would let you in after you've warned me what you would most likely do with me?" she asked him.
Remus thought about his answer very carefully.
"Not if you are thinking with your mind, Isadora," he replied softly, "but you must realize I now know how to talk to you in a way that your body responds to. In my pre and post transformation mode, it is most likely I will be quite seductive, Isadora and I would not hesitate to stoop to begging. You have a soft heart. I think you would let me in. And that would be the end of us."
She looked into his gentle eyes and knew that Remus was probably right. He was very seductive in his way, though he always let her initiate sex. He never made sexual advances toward the witch, though he was always ready and willing to meet her needs when she wanted him. His seductiveness was in his technique, the way he gently and patiently brought her body to the edge before he would take her.
Isadora might not be able to resist Remus if he were to ask her to give herself to him. She could just imagine him, "I want you, Isadora" in that soft, gentle voice. No, she probably wouldn't be able to resist him if he voiced his desire for her, no matter how close to the full moon it was.
"Maybe wards would be a good idea," she said.
"They are," Remus replied, looking at her intensely. "They're what you use to protect what you treasure."
Isadora gave him a small smile and moved closer to him. Remus wrapped his arm around her shoulder and drew her into him. They sat in comfortable silence, enjoying their time together.
"Wards? Whatever for Severus?" Hermione said.
"To keep that werewolf from violating my mother while in his pre and post transformation cycle," Severus said darkly.
"Remus would never violate your mother. He's never violated or attacked anyone in his pre and post cycles," Hermione said.
"He's never had a mate before, Hermione. He will seek my mother out when the urge becomes too strong. And he won't be the same man towards her if he should find her," Severus said, "Remus is quite worried to his credit."
Hermione considered this. If Remus was worried then there probably was a good cause for it.
"Well, Remus could come here and let me capture his magical signature. Then I can alter a few wards to trigger in his presence," Hermione said thoughtfully. "They would protect the flat."
"No, he can't come here. I don't want him to know where I live, Hermione. I will probably bring my mother here at night, and I don't want him showing up seeking her out. Hexes will fly if he does, and I don't mean bat bogies," the Potions Master said coldly.
Hermione knew what that meant. Her husband wouldn't hesitate to hurt Remus if he came to his home where his mother, wife and children were. His hexes would be quite severe.
"You will have to go to him," Severus said, "And they have to be wards my mother can't remove."
"Why not? That means she'll be trapped inside," Hermione said, thinking Isadora wouldn't appreciate being a prisoner in her own flat.
"Because Hermione. She has an attraction for the werewolf. He might convince her to let him in," Severus said uncomfortably.
The fact that Remus could seduce his mother didn't sit well with him at all. That fact she might want to be seduced disturbed him even more. He shuddered.
Hermione thought about how easily Severus seduced her all the time. His voice alone could make her drop her knickers and bend over. If Remus had that effect on Isadora, then she couldn't have access to the wards.
"Is Remus there now?" Hermione asked.
"Yes," Severus replied, scowling.
"I might as well go get his signature now then," Hermione said, picking up her wand.
Hopefully Isadora and Remus weren't engaged in any vigorous activity. Well, she wouldn't be apparating inside the flat, so she didn't have to worry about catching an eyeful like Eli had.
"Very well," Severus said, kissing her lightly, "I'll be in the lab, working."
Severus exited the living room as Hermione walked down the hall to the nursery to let Eli know she was going out. The babies were both asleep. So was Eli, curled up in his little bed in the corner of the room. Hermione shook him gently.
"Eli. Eli?" she said. The elf's eyes opened and he sat up quickly.
"Is the young Masters in need, Mistress?" the elf asked, a bit embarrassed to be caught sleeping. Actually Hermione wondered if he ever slept. It was good to know he did.
"They're fine, Eli. I am going out to Isadora's for a bit. Severus is in the lab and there's milk in the cooler," she said.
The elf nodded.
"Yes, Mistress. I will take care of the Masters," he said, standing, stretching then walking over to the cribs and checking the children.
"I know you will, Eli," Hermione said smiling at him, "I will see you in a bit."
"Goodbye Mistress. Have a nice visit," the elf said.
Hermione left the nursery, walked into the living room, put a disillusionment and silencing spell on herself, and disapparated.
The night before Remus was to leave for his room in Knockturn Alley for the next week he and Isadora made passionate love for hours, the wizard memorizing every inch of the witch's body with his lips and tongue, covering her with caresses, kisses, licks, nips and snuffles, wrapping himself in her ebony locks, tasting her skin and her flavor over and over until she was begging him to take her, and take her he did, to plateau after plateau of pleasure before resuming his gentle, thorough worship of her body. There was no part of Isadora Snape that Remus Lupin didn't know intimately by touch, scent and taste.
Hermione had succeeded in adapting several wards that Remus would not be able to pass, the final ward being a repelling spell that would literally toss him away from the flat if he approached within six feet of it. She had locked them with her own and Severus' signatures so anyone else would be hard put to take them down. If Isadora wanted to leave her flat, she had to go to Severus' house via floo and journey to her destination from there. In the evenings, she would depart to her son's home and spend the night there, spoiling the babies and chatting with Hermione. Severus was in his lab for most of the evening, diligently working on a cure for Remus.
FOLLOW THIS LINK FOR INTERACTIVE MUSIC:
theburningpen . com SLASH familiar SLASH audio SLASH ootn . m3u
That night he had erotic dreams and whimpered in his sleep as he took her over and over again. The next day found him apparating a distance down the street from her flat and watching to see if he could catch a glimpse of her. But the wards were up and she couldn't leave the house. He walked by a couple of times to see if he could see her through the window, but the curtains were drawn. He went home feeling frustrated, and his dreams were more vivid than the night before.
The third day was a waking nightmare for the wizard. He had completed his physical manifestation and had a sustained erection almost the entire day. He didn't leave his room, and tried to occupy his time reading through the piles of travel brochures he'd brought with him. But he could smell Isadora on his clothing and the scent of her kept him in a constant state of arousal. The wizard spent several hours pacing his room naked, like a caged animal, growling as he thought of her soft warm body, and her voice crying out in pleasure. She was like a subtext in his head and he couldn't rid himself of her. He needed Isadora desperately. About ten o'clock that evening, Remus could take it no longer, wrapped his robes around his naked body and apparated to muggle London.
Her flat was dark as Remus approached it, whining in the back of his throat as he entered the walkway. Instead of going to the door, he circled the flat, walking along the side of it, and to the back, seeking some sign that she was in there. He tried to approach the back door and was pushed back. He growled and attempted it again. A repelling ward. He pulled out his wand angrily and attempted to drop the ward, but it wouldn't fall. He tried again and again but it remained strong. Finally the wizard resorted to dark magic, something he hadn't used in years, and succeeded in isolating a small area of the ward, and burning a temporary hole through it while the rest of it remained intact.
Remus climbed through and found other wards protecting the door. Lost to desire, the wizard continued to use the dark spells he knew to bore a way in. Finally he reached the door and opened it with a simple Alohamora spell. He entered the house stealthily, lighting his wand so he could see. He began to sniff, seeking the witch out, combing the entire house for her. He found a fresh scent and followed it to the floo. He snarled when he tossed a handful of floo powder into it, and the flames didn't turn green. He knew she was at Severus' house and was so desperate to find her, he would have followed her there, and dueled the dark wizard to get at her.
Finding Isadora beyond his reach, Remus hoarsely howled her name in frustration several times, before dropping on to the sofa dejectedly. He could still smell the scent of their encounters in the cushion, and placed his face against it, snuffling deeply.
Gods, she should be here for him, willing and waiting.
Remus stood up and walked into her bathroom, opened her hamper and dug through the clothing, whining as he searched for something that smelled of them both. He found the dress she had worn when he 'thanked' her and put it against his nose. Yes, it smelled very strongly of sex, of her scent and his combined. He snuffled it deeply several times as he closed the hamper and exited her bathroom, taking the dress with him.
Remus exited the flat, having to spell his way out much the same way he got in, the wards having resealed themselves. He apparated back to his room in Knockturn Alley from the backyard. He removed his robes and threw them on a chair, dropping into the bed, clutching Isadora's dress against his face as he burned for her. He lay there growling, breathing in their mingled scent.
At least he knew he could get past Hermione's wards.
The next morning, Hermione accompanied Isadora back to her flat. After looking out of the window carefully, searching for any sign of Remus, she removed the wards so Isadora could retrieve the morning paper. When she picked up the paper and turned to re-enter the flat, Isadora noticed a note taped to her front door. She pulled it off and read it, looking perplexed as she walked back inside, closing the door. Hermione quickly replaced the wards. She saw Isadora staring at the note.
"What is it Isadora?" she asked curiously, walking up to the witch and standing beside her so she could read the piece of paper.
"A note from the neighbors, complaining about my dog howling last night and saying I shouldn't leave him alone in the house if I'm going to be out," she said. "But I don't have a dog."
Hermione stiffened immediately and went into defensive mode. She whispered a spell and a shimmer appeared before slowly fading.
"Shit. Remus was here. In the flat. I just identified his signature," Hermione said, her amber eyes glancing about the flat suspiciously. "Take out your wand, Isadora. If he's here, we're going to have to hex him or most likely he'll go for you."
Isadora drew out her wand and began to follow Hermione, who was carefully walking through the flat as quietly as she could.
"How could he get through your wards, Hermione?" Isadora whispered to her, her black eyes darting about as they checked room after room.
"I have no idea," Hermione whispered. "Even Severus can't crack my wards in one day. Remus must have done it in hours, if not minutes."
The two witches checked the entire house. Remus wasn't there.
"Did you notice anything out of place?" Hermione asked her mother-in-law, who looked a bit dazed. Remus had broken into her flat looking for her.
"No…no nothing," she replied.
Hermione straightened and walked toward the back door. She took down the wards.
"What are you doing?" Isadora asked her, sticking close.
"I'm going to check the wards to see if I can figure out what he did to get in here," she said, opening the door and walking outside. Isadora followed her.
Hermione put the wards back up and did a diagnostic on them. She paused.
"Traces of dark magic. Remus used dark magic to get in. I forgot he was the Dark Arts teacher for a year. Obviously he has more skills than we imagined."
She turned to Isadora.
"You're going to have to come back with me, Isadora. You aren't safe here," Hermione said to the witch.
Isadora looked hesitant.
"If he went through all this, maybe I should go see him," she said.
Hermione shook her head.
"I wouldn't advise that Isadora. You promised Severus that you would follow the rules. He might stop working on the cure," Hermione said, "Besides, Remus isn't the Remus you know now. You can't trust him to be…to be a gentleman."
"Severus isn't going to stop working on the cure," Isadora said as they walked back in the house. "He'll continue to work on it in order to protect me, especially since Remus lives with me. I really think I need to go see him, Hermione. I have a feeling he needs me."
Hermione scowled at her mother-in-law.
"He needs you all right. Needs to bore a hole right through you. Really Isadora…Remus warned you off him himself. Are you going to go against his wishes and risk having something terrible happen between you? He might grab you and rape you in his condition. Not only will that hurt you, but imagine how he will feel when he comes back to himself? Not only will he have lost you, but he will have committed a crime against you and be sent to Azkaban, if Severus doesn't kill him first. Don't go to him, Isadora. I know you care for him, but it will be a huge mistake that can cost you whatever happiness you've found with him," Hermione pleaded.
Isadora looked at the witch.
"I bet Severus has his hands full when you two argue," she said, then sighed. "You're right, Hermione. I won't go. But how will I work?"
"Work is going to have to take the back position on the broom, Isadora. Your safety is more important than your work right now," Hermione said evenly. She knew what Isadora was feeling. When she was working on a project, she hated to be disrupted. And this was Isadora's livelihood.
Hermione thought of something.
"Well, Remus will be at that barn tonight. Severus can accompany you back here tonight and watch over you while you catch up on your work. That's the only other option I can think of Isadora," Hermione said, picking up some floo powder and tossing it into the fireplace. Nothing happened.
"Damn, we forgot to open it back up before we left this morning," she said as Isadora printed out some paperwork from her computer, scanned the printouts and gathered up several brochures.
"I suppose I can at least do part of the work by hand…go prehistoric," she quipped, approaching Hermione. "I still can't believe Remus got in here."
Hermione looked thoughtful as they approached the front of the flat, preparing to leave.
"I think Severus suspected he would. He's always had faith in my wards, but he refused to let you spend the night here alone despite them. Remus is a very powerful wizard, Isadora. More powerful than I realized. I guess because of the way he had to live it just never registered that he could be so strong magically. He had to be desperate to resort to dark magic though. It's not exactly illegal because it has its uses, but is definitely frowned upon. And I just know the officials at the Ministry would have bugbears if they knew a werewolf were using it."
Isadora looked thoughtful as she and Hermione disillusioned themselves and Hermione removed the wards.
"Severus has to find that cure soon," she said softly, "Remus could get himself in a lot of trouble otherwise. I don't want that. Especially because of me."
Although she couldn't see her, Hermione turned toward her mother-in-law.
"Isadora, don't start feeling guilty about this. You are the best thing that has ever happened to Remus. He is happy probably for the first time in his life since he made friends at Hogwarts. And they're all dead now. His health has been improving. You almost wouldn't know he had a malady now by looking at him. And I'm sure that's because of you. You've made his life so much better, Isadora, in so many ways. Don't do an "I'll leave him for his own good." If you leave him, it would probably destroy him. It would be too cruel. Plus you care for him. You would both be miserable."
Hermione had effectively nipped that very thought in the bud.
"Severus will find a cure for him, Isadora. He loves you too much not to," Hermione added, "He wants you safe and happy. He knows Remus makes you happy, and despite his personal reservations, he wants to keep you that way. Don't worry. Your son is a brilliant man."
"Yes…yes he is Hermione. And a good one," Isadora replied, somewhat heartened by her daughter-in-law. She reached out, waving her hand toward the small shimmer that was Hermione, found her and pulled the witch against her in a warm embrace.
"Thank you daughter-in-law. You make a lot of sense. Severus was wise to marry you," she said against Hermione's hair. She kissed the witch's temple, then let her go. Hermione felt a strong wash of love for her mother-in-law flow over her. She was an amazing woman.
"Let's get to the house," Isadora said.
"I have grandbabies to spoil."
Severus informed Hermione and his mother he would not be able to accompany Isadora to her flat tonight, because he had several versions of the cure for Remus ready for experimentation, and he could only test them on the night of the full moon, when his blood was reactive. Remus' blood was altered by the influence of the moon. What he was hoping for was that he'd found a concentrated wolfsbane derivative that would separate, nullify and destroy the werewolf blood and leave the human hemoglobin intact and alive. He had previously developed a similar potion that retarded the change in the blood, which initially started about three days before the moon was in full phase also based on the wolfsbane potion. Only when the werewolf blood was dominant, could the transformation occur. This physical takeover of the body was why Remus' organ changed…it was a visual indicator of the werewolf blood taking over.
If Severus was successful, not only would Remus be cured, but the Potions Master would become a very, very rich wizard. This thought was in his mind as well, especially since he now had a family to support. He planned to leave Hogwarts if this happened and strike out on his own, creating commercial potions. Hopefully, his sons would have his love for potions and would work alongside him, eventually taking over the business.
Since Severus couldn't accompany his mother, he called in a favor from two trusted associates.
"You go out with Remus Lupin?" Nymphadora Tonks asked Isadora in amazement as Kingsley looked on, standing a little to the right of the three witches, all of whom were seated. Isadora and Hermione sat on the sofa and Tonks was in the armchair facing them.
They were all in Hermione's living room, having a light snack and pumpkin juice.
The tall, bald black Auror folded his muscular arms across his huge chest and listened, smirking as Tonks barreled into Isadora's private life, wand blazing.
Isadora looked at Tonks appraisingly. The Auror's hair was short, spiked and colored yellow and purple. She had a sharp pixyish face with a pointed chin and wide, expressive hazel eyes. She was slender, but had strong feminine attributes. Obviously she was an eclectic type, a bit of a rebel and by the openness of her question, inquisitive and rather uninhibited. Isadora decided she liked her. She liked people who were comfortable with being themselves, even if it were outside the realm of what was normally considered acceptable.
Hermione's mouth was drawn in a thin line. Tonks didn't seem to know her way around polite conversation and just said whatever came to mind. Asking Severus Snape's mother if she 'went out' with Remus Lupin was a question a fifth year would ask.
"I am 'involved' with Remus, if that's what you want to know," Isadora replied, smirking a bit as Tonks eyes widened.
She could tell the Auror was brimming with question, but the presence of Kingsley kept her from asking them. Isadora suspected they weren't the kind of questions one would ask in mixed company.
"You know, I've always liked Remus. Had a crush on him once…he wasn't interested though. Too busy being a werewolf I suppose. Hurt my feelings, but I got over it," Tonks said, glancing up at Kingsley who pursed his lips at her and winked.
Isadora didn't miss the exchange. Seems like Tonks now liked her men big, brawny and chocolate. Actually Tonks was one of the few witches who probably could have handled Remus sexually. As a metamorphmagus, she could alter her body in a number of ways, even change it completely. She could have adjusted herself to be able to meet the werewolf's ardor. Now Kingsley Shacklebolt was the happy recipient of Tonks' metamorphic talents between the sheets. No wonder he always seemed to be secretly smiling.
"So, if you're involved with him, why are we protecting you from him?" Tonks asked curiously. Hermione winced.
"It seems Remus gets a bit more 'affectionate' when it gets close to the full moon. Affectionate to the point where it can become a problem," Isadora replied, "We're trying to avoid that."
"Oh," Tonks said shortly. Then Isadora's meaning set in. "Ohhhhh," Tonks said again in understanding. So Remus was overly randy and on the prowl for the witch. That seemed like a problem she wouldn't mind having on occasion.
"But it's a full moon. Remus probably locked himself up somewhere tonight," Tonks said.
"I know," Isadora said, looking at Hermione with narrowed eyes. "But my son and daughter-in-law insist I be baby-sat."
"Better safe than werewolf meat," he said, arching an eyebrow at Isadora. Kingsley had dealt with werewolves before, only narrowly escaping being bit himself. The Auror glanced out of the window. Night was falling.
"I think we should go now," he said to Isadora and Tonks, who both rose.
"Sure you don't want to come, Hermione?" Isadora asked her.
Hermione shook her head.
"No, I'm going to help Severus. He is testing the cure tonight. He's been working like crazy and is exhausted. He needs another pair of hands and eyes," Hermione said.
"I hope he's successful," Isadora said, as she walked up to the floo, grabbed a handful of powder and threw it in. The flames turned green.
"Catch you later, Hermione. Cute kids," Tonks piped before stepping through, her wand drawn.
"See you in a bit Hermione," Isadora said following Tonks.
Kingsley gave her a wave before squeezing his bulk through the floo after the witches, his wand also drawn.
Hermione sat there a moment and watched until the flames returned to normal. Then she walked down to the nursery to check on the children and Eli. The babies had quite a play session with Tonks and Isadora and were worn out, sound asleep. Eli sat on his bed, folding his beloved cloth diapers in a neat pile.
"Eli, I'm going out to the lab with Severus," she said watching him for a moment.
He looked up.
"Yes Mistress," he replied, "I will be here."
"Thank you, Eli," Hermione said, exiting the room.
As she headed out of the house and across the yard to the lab, Hermione did something she rarely did. She prayed. She didn't know exactly to whom or what she was praying, but she sent up a fervent plea that her husband be successful. She too realized how important it would be, not just for Isadora and Remus, but for the entire wizarding world. There were quite a few werewolves who would benefit from such a cure, and be able to live normal lives. What a gift her husband would give them…though he would hardly give it to them.
Severus was all business when it came to potions. But more than likely foundations would form to get the cure to those who needed it. Werewolves crossed all social boundaries. There were affected rich families who might purchase large amounts to distribute or at least contribute out of gratefulness a cure had been found. If it were found.
Hermione opened the door to the lab to find Severus hovering over several petri dishes of blood. He looked very tired, but his black eyes were glittering with excitement as he checked and rechecked the contents of each dish. Several small bottles sat behind the blood…variations of the cure. They were numbered.
"Hello Severus," Hermione said to her husband.
Severus glanced at her.
"Hello wife," he responded shortly. He walked to the window and peered up at the sky. The moon was rising. He turned back excitedly walking back over to the counter and the dishes, then began to explain to Hermione what would happen and what he was hoping for. She listened carefully.
"Each of this dishes of Remus' blood is under a stasis spell. When I remove the spell, it will react to the moon and transform from human blood to werewolf blood. We will be able to identify the change visibly because werewolf blood is almost black, and you can see the blood here is a vibrant red. When the blood completes its transformation I will add the potion behind it and observe the results. What I am looking for is the blood to separate back into human and werewolf components, and the werewolf blood to die while the human blood remains viable.
I have had excellent results with retarding the slow change of the human blood, and have used that potion to distill several others. Wolfsbane figures heavily into the mix. If one of these dishes contains viable human blood at the end of the experiment, then that will be a cure. Once the entire werewolf element is removed from the blood, it will not be able to regenerate, and transformation will not be able to occur.
The cure will have to be immediately followed by a blood cleansing potion, to destroy the dead blood cells before they clog the circulatory system, then followed by a blood replenishing potion to build up the volume of blood the loss of the werewolf blood will cause. Half the blood in the body will be suddenly gone…which can cause serious problems because the oxygen intake will be severely curtailed. The blood cleanser and replenisher have to be administered immediately after the cure takes effect. Without them, the werewolf will die. So in actuality, three potions will be needed to complete the cure.
Hermione nodded, feeling excitement welling up in her belly. Severus looked out of the window again.
"Yes, the moon has risen," he said, walking up to the first petri dish, drawing his wand and removing the protective stasis spell.
Immediately, the blood seemed to boil violently, the healthy red color darkening and becoming almost black. An unpleasant odor of raw meat rose from it.
Severus uncorked the first bottle and added several drops to the blackened blood. Both he and Hermione watched for the reaction. The blood bubbled a little, reddened, then hardened completely.
Severus shook his head.
"Both elements died. This would kill Remus," he said, "not that it isn't an appealing option. At least where I'm concerned."
"Severus!" Hermione exclaimed, scowling at him.
The Potions Master moved to the next petri dish. He removed the spell and waited for the bubbling transformation.
"Transformation must be painful judging by the way the blood reacts to the moon. Feeling that in your veins and organs must be horrible," Hermione said.
"It is. That's why every freshly transformed werewolf is angry and ready to attack. It's in pain," Severus replied, adding the next potion to the blood.
This time the blood boiled and separated into a mix of vibrant red and black. The black blood hardened, and the red blood remained viable for a moment, before it too hardened.
"Damn. So close," Severus breathed, "but it makes me hopeful for the next two dishes.
The Potions Master moved to the next dish, Hermione watching, holding her breath as Severus removed the stasis spell and the violent transformation began again. The he added the next potion to the black blood. It began to blood, and it too separated into bright red and black blood. The black blood hardened. The red remained viable. Both Hermione and Severus waited for the human blood to congeal or break down. It didn't.
Hermione pulled out her wand and whispered a spell. A blue light appeared on the tip.
"What are you doing?" Severus asked her, scowling.
Normally he would not allow anyone near his experiments when they were happening. But his wife was brilliant. She wouldn't do anything to jeopardize the outcome. Still he was rather protective.
"This is a general healer spell used to check overall health. It won't affect the blood, just let us know if it is healthy," Hermione replied, passing the wand over the dish. It glowed a brighter blue.
"It's healthy," Hermione breathed, looking up at her husband, who was staring at the dish.
"It isn't congealing," he said.
Quickly he grabbed another petri dish and shook part of the semi-congealed blood into it. He added some blood cleanser, and the dried blood instantly disappeared, leaving only a small amount of viable human blood. Severus then added a blood replenisher, and the volume quickly doubled. Hermione passed her wand over it.
"Healthy!" she exclaimed, dropping her wand and flinging her arms around Severus, who was staring at the dish of healthy human blood, his heart pounding.
He'd found it. Severus had found the cure.
His mother's safety and the future of his family was secured.
Remus woke with Isadora's dress wrapped around his head. He pulled it off and sat up on the side of his bed, holding his head, which was pounding. It was the day of transformation and he always felt a bit ill. He could smell his own altered scent now, musky and wolfish. His mind turned to Isadora and he whined. But despite his lust for her, he had to leave. He threw his robe over his naked body and fastened it. He stuffed Isadora's dress in his pocket, along with his bottle of wolfsbane potion, warded his room securely then disapparated for the country.
It was still very early when he arrived at Rubin's farm. Remus entered the barn to find the farmer there, adding fresh hay to the enclosure. The farmer turned when he heard the door open. He looked at Remus speculatively.
"It's on you now, isn't it?" the farmer asked him.
"Well, you look a lot better than my son did on the day before the night of the full moon," Rubin said, looking him over. "Your eyes are showing some of it, but Junior's eyes were wild for the whole day, and he roamed the farm, chasing things, digging up my plants and being a general nuisance. Sometimes I'd have to stun him to get him in here before the moon rose. You seem able to get yourself locked up all right."
Remus nodded again.
Rubin added the last of the fresh, sweet-smelling hay to the room and straightened. He looked at Remus.
"You look a bit peaked, son. You eat this morning?" he asked the wizard.
Remus shook his head. Rubin's eyes swept over the werewolf again, and this time noticed his tented robes. He didn't say anything. He figured the lust was on him too. Well, he didn't have any witches on the farm, and he figured he himself was safe enough. By the size of the wizard's erection, it was on him pretty good. No wonder he wasn't talking. All the blood in his head had to be in his tool, and he probably couldn't wrap his mind around forming words.
"Come on, let me feed you. It's better to transform on a full stomach, otherwise the urge to hunt will hit you harder," the farmer said knowledgably, walking past Remus and pushing the door open. The wizard followed him to the farmhouse and into the kitchen.
Rubin lit his stove with his wand, and slid a griddle over the burner as Remus sat down at the kitchen table, watching him quietly. He was glad for the company of the old farmer.
Rubin went into his cooler and took out a huge, bloody steak. Remus stiffened immediately as the delicious smell of blood hit his nostrils. Rubin glanced at him as he took the steak over to the sink and washed it off.
"It's fresh," he said. "Got my own slaughtering animals. Most of it is in the smokehouse, but I figured you'd like some fresh meat, so I saved this for you."
"Thank you," Remus said hoarsely, watching the farmer put the steak on a plate and season it lightly. Then he tossed it on the griddle and the smell of frying meat filled the kitchen. After about a minute and a half, Rubin flipped the steak and cooked it for another minute and a half, then slid it back on to the plate and carried it over to Remus and set it in front of him. Blood ran from it.
"I know how to cook a steak for a werewolf about to transform," Rubin said, sitting down across from Remus. "I didn't give you any utensils because I know you won't use them. Go ahead and eat son. I've seen it all before."
Remus looked at the farmer a moment. He didn't like people to watch him eat when the full moon was approaching. But the steak smelled delicious…hot and rare, and he salivated, a whimper sounding from his throat. Rubin didn't look at all surprised at the sound. Suddenly Remus grabbed the steak in both hands and started tearing at it hungrily, blood running down his chin.
Rubin nodded as he watched the wizard eat.
"If I was to come anywhere near you right now, son, you'd probably take my hand off or worse. Must be a hard thing to feel yourself turning into an animal and losing control," the farmer said sympathetically. Then he rose and got several napkins, and sat back down across from Remus. He wasn't about to try to hand them to the wizard while he was ripping into that steak.
Remus finished the steak and licked the blood from his hands and wrists, then the plate, his eyes turning on the farmer as he did so. Rubin slid the napkins across to Remus.
"Got some blood on your chin," he said shortly. Remus finished cleaning the plate with his tongue, then wiped his chin, wadding up the used napkins and placing them on his plate.
Rubin smiled at him.
"You have better table manners than Junior did," the farmer said, picking up the plate, taking it over to the sink, throwing the napkins in the trash and washing the plate. He deposited it in the rack. He turned to Remus.
"You've got a while before nightfall. Why don't you roam about a bit? The farm is in interesting place to someone in your condition. Just stay away from the livestock. Those chickens can be tempting to chase," the farmer said. "And they're laying hens, not eating hens, so I want to keep them around."
Remus nodded and stood up.
"Thank you for your kindness, Mr. Fezwig," he said with an effort.
"Call me Rubin, son," the farmer said kindly.
"Thank you, Rubin," Remus said, turning and walking out the door. Rubin followed him as far as the porch.
"I'll ring the cowbell at dusk to let you know it's time. You can get distracted out here," the farmer called after Remus, who turned and nodded at the farmer before walking off towards the woods.
"Nice boy. Too bad he's a werewolf," the farmer said to himself as he watched Remus' robed figure get smaller and smaller. The wizard suddenly broke into a run and disappeared into the trees.
Remus spent the day roaming and snuffling around the forest, startling small birds and animals. The sights and sounds of the woods served to take his mind off Isadora, and he started back for the farm as he felt the pull of the moon. He ran all the way back, barely breaking a sweat as he flew across the fields, robes billowing. He heard the cowbell ringing. Rubin was looking out for him.
The farmer watched Remus enter the barn and close the door behind him. The farmer then warded his house securely and went inside. Now would come the horrible part. Rubin cast a silencing spell. He didn't want to hear it. It would remind him too much of Junior.
Remus entered the barn and closed the door behind him. Triggered by the werewolf's presence, the door to the bars swung open, and the wizard entered. The door shut tight and locked behind him. Remus took out the bottle of wolfsbane potion, then removed his robes and hung them between the bars. Naked, he opened the bottle of potion and drank it down, grimacing afterwards. Wolfsbane potion was nasty stuff. He put the empty bottle back in his robes pocket then walked over to the manacles. He noticed Rubin had put a chair and a bed inside the enclosure, as well as bucket of water and a couple of huge beef bones. The wizard was too kind.
Remus gathered the manacles then walked over to the chair, sat down and clasped them around his ankles and wrists. They magically adjusted to fit securely but not too tightly. He tested the strength of the chains. They were secure.
The wizard sat there tensely, waiting for the moon to rise and thinking about Isadora. It was nice to have her to think about. Normally all he thought about at this time was the pain that awaited him when he transformed. But he had her face set firmly in his mind when the tingling began. His body began to shudder as his blood begin to boil in his veins, and he screamed as fire shot through every part of his body, feeling as if he were cooking from the inside out. His eyes became black-veined as the werewolf blood took over, flowing through his capillaries. Remus continued screaming as his musculature realigned itself, and his knees painfully locked backward, snapping into place. His bones began to lengthen, stretching his flesh as another foot and a half was added to his already tall frame. Then the itching began as thick, brown fur sprouted from his pores.
The realigning of his facial structure began, the most painful part of his transformation. His jawbone was torn loose from the socket momentarily as it elongated into a muzzle, bones and teeth cracking, breaking, realigning then rejoining, the wizard screaming hoarsely until the scream became a long, loud howl that rang across the countryside.
Panting heavily, the werewolf looked around the enclosure and howled again in rage and pain, jerking at its restraints, then biting at them viciously, to no avail. The animal strode up to the bars and grabbed them, shaking them savagely, but they didn't budge. Then it attempted to tear at the wood walls, but not a single mark appeared on them from its long, wicked claws. The creature raged for several minutes until the pain died away and it dropped panting into the chair. Then Remus' mind slowly reasserted itself. He looked around the enclosure, and his yellow eyes fell on the beef bones. He scooped one up and crunched down on the huge bone, cracking it open easily, and lapped at the juicy, bloody marrow inside. Then he gnawed on the fat end of the bone for a while, then began to play with it, tossing it around the enclosure and rolling on it when it fell to the floor, tangling himself up in the chains for a moment.
Remus unraveled himself, took a drink of cold water from the bucket, then tipped over the bed, battering the frame around the enclosure for a while then tossing the bent frame into the far corner. He then shredded the mattress, ripping it satisfyingly with his jaws as he held it in place with his paws. After he demolished it, he rolled on that too, vaguely aware he was going to have to pay for all of this damage. Then he caught a whiff of Isadora and strode over to his robes. His first inclination was to rip the robes apart to find the source of the scent, but his mind overrode him. He needed these robes. So he held them up, snuffling until he located the pocket the crumpled dress was in. He stuck his muzzle in the pocket and pulled out the dress with his teeth and dropped it into his paws, sniffing and licking the fabric, his tail wagging and huge pink erection emerging as he smelled his mate.
Remus howled for Isadora and listened for a reply, his long ears twitching this way and that. There was no answering cry. He howled again and again, but there was no answer. He paced the cage and renewed his calling for Isadora. But the witch was far from him, and wouldn't have understood his howls anyway. Finally, after about two hours of howling, he used his muzzle and paws to pile together the remains of the mattress into a comfortable mess, walked around it three times and lay down, Isadora's dress draped over his nose.
The werewolf slept fitfully, scratching, whining, snarling and running in his sleep as he sought out a mate he couldn't find.
The following morning Rubin entered the barn to find a naked Remus asleep on a pile of what used to be the mattress. He surveyed the damage. The bed frame was a crumpled mess. Ah well, it looked like the boy had fun anyway. The door to the enclosure was open, having unlocked when Remus transformed back. The farmer looked at him closely. The wizard had what looked like a dress wrapped around his head. He inspected the enclosure again. Seemed like his werewolf form was housebroken as well. Well that was good.
"Remus. Wake up, son," Rubin said to the sleeping wizard.
Remus' bloodshot eyes opened and he sat up quickly, pulling the dress from his head, piling it in his lap and looking up at the farmer.
"It's over son, at least for this month," the farmer said to him gently.
Remus looked around the ruined enclosure. He remembered everything he'd done.
"Will pay," Remus said hoarsely.
The transformation was over but he was still caught up in the animal urges. Already his mind was turning to Isadora as her scent wafted up from the dress.
"All right son, but I'll leave the mattress stuffings. Seems you prefer sleeping on them rather than a bed anyway. Now get dressed and you can wash up and I'll fix you something to eat before you head back."
Rubin left the barn to give the wizard some privacy.
Remus stood up shakily, clutching Isadora's dress. He picked up his robes off the floor and slipped them on. Already the wizard's thoughts were focused on returning to the witch's flat tonight in hopes of finding her there. He needed her. It had been too long.
The wizard pushed open the barn door and exited into the morning air. It smelled good. He stretched and stuffed Isadora's dress into his pocket, then headed toward Rubin's farmhouse.
Remus licked his lips. He could smell the steak cooking from here.
At ten o'clock that night, Remus apparated on the corner of the boulevard, a distance from Isadora's flat. He had enough presence of mind to go and get a haircut and shave, and was dressed in new robes. He walked toward her flat, checking to see how many muggles were about. Not many at all. He turned into her small yard.
Yes! A light was on inside. She must be there. Remus growled deep in his throat as his erection throbbed. If she were there, she would accept him. She must.
The aroused wizard once again went around to the back of the flat. This time it didn't take him as long to bore through the wards and enter the house. Quietly he made his way through the kitchen. He didn't light his wand, using the light coming from under the crack of the kitchen door from the living room to guide him. He approached the door and stood there listening, breathing heavily from desire. He couldn't scent her however. He heard a slight noise. She was in the living room. He opened the door and walked through…to find Severus sitting at the computer terminal Remus used, staring at the screen intently.
"Good evening, Remus," Severus said, still staring at the screen.
Remus blinked at the Potions Master.
"Where…where is Isadora? I …I …need to see her," Remus said, a low growl in his voice.
Severus looked at him for a moment, then rose from the chair and stood facing him.
"My mother is not here, Remus. She is with my wife and children. I assure you, you will not seek her out there," the Potions Master evenly. "And by the growl in your voice, I daresay you are not just interested in seeing her."
"I want her, Severus!" Remus growled, drawing his wand. "You will take me to her."
Severus drew his own wand.
"I will not take you anywhere near my mother, Remus. The only reason you aren't blasted to hell right now is because I promised my mother I wouldn't harm you should I find you here," Severus hissed at him. "But if you attack me, I will feel no remorse about hexing a hole in you. That would break my mother's heart, but it is your call, werewolf."
For a moment, Remus faltered as he imagined Isadora's grief if either he or Severus were injured or killed dueling each other. Then he lowered his wand, and walked over to the sofa and sat down.
"I can't do without her. It's driving me mad!" Remus said, laying his wand on the cushion beside him and holding his head in his hands.
"You've only two more days to go Remus. Now listen, I am here for two reasons. The first being you've used dark magic to get through Hermione's wards, so my mother is no longer safe from you while you have the means to do this. So firstly Remus, you will give me your wand to hold until the animal influence is containable. Without it, you will not be able to gain entrance here. As long as it is in your possession, she is not safe. So hand it over, or I will take it by force," Severus said coldly, his black eyes fixed on the wolf.
Still thinking of Isadora, Remus picked up his wand and tossed it to Severus, who caught it neatly and deposited it in his robes pocket.
"The second reason I am here Remus, is that I have the cure completed to end your malady," he said.
Remus looked up at him in disbelief.
"So quickly?" the werewolf asked him.
"I had already completed much of the research and initial experimentation years ago. I was quite close to a cure when I stopped working on it, due to other more pressing duties. But…the cure is dangerous. It requires three applications of potions and will be quite painful. And it will have to be administered on the night of the full moon, just before the moon rises. You will still have to be shackled during its administration and there is a very good chance you won't survive the cure if I cannot get the other potions in you in time.
But if I can administer all the potions in a timely manner, you will no longer transform during the full moon, although you will retain much of your animal nature. It has been with you so long, it is now part of your psychological make-up. But for all intents and purposes, you will be fully human again and permanently cured of your malady."
Remus could not believe it. He sat in silence on the couch, his desire for Isadora momentarily wiped from his mind as he absorbed what the Potions Master had said. He could be cured…there was risk involved, but his entire life was a risk. As a recognized human, he would no longer fall under the laws of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, be taken off the Werewolf Registry, freed from the watchful eye of the Werewolf Capture Unit and have full rights under the law. He could travel where he wished, not be discriminated against in public establishments, he could even marry and reproduce. Was he willing to face possible death to acquire these rights?
He was very willing.
"I need to inform you, Remus…that my mother is against you taking the cure, although it was she who asked me to make it for you. She feels it is too risky and that you may lose your life. I know it is in your nature to kowtow to her every wish, and actually it is the one characteristic you have I approve of concerning her…but in this instance, Remus…you have to be a man and take control of your own destiny. All your life you have been apologetic for living, keeping your head low, accepting mistreatment of yourself, accepting the mistreatment of others…"
Here Severus paused a bit. This was as close as he ever intended to get to taking the werewolf to task for his lack of action when the Marauders attacked the Potions Master when they were students at Hogwarts together. The offending Marauders were all dry bones and dust now. It was time to let such things go.
"…this is your one opportunity to shed all of that, and take a your rightful place in wizarding society, a place that was stolen from you by a single bite received as a child. You are very lucky, Remus. It is not everyone that gets a second chance at life," Severus said, thinking about Hermione and his sons. "I suggest you not pass on this opportunity, Remus, not even for the sake of my own mother."
Severus walked to the front door of the flat and took down the wards.
"Come Remus, it's time to leave the flat. You will see my mother soon enough. I will return your wand two days from now. I will also collect it again, three days before the next full moon. Hopefully it will be the last time I have to collect it," the Potions Master said evenly.
Remus stood up and followed Severus out of Isadora's flat. He still wanted the witch, but Severus' news about the cure had taken precedence in his mind. That would be what the wizard would dream about tonight, and for the next nights to come.
"Remus, it is too dangerous. I absolutely forbid you to take that cure!" Isadora raved, pacing back and forth in front of the sofa that Remus sat on, calmly watching the witch that meant so much to him rant and make demands.
"So you would rather I continue to transform every month for the rest of my life and live as less than a second-class citizen, Isadora?" he asked her.
Isadora looked at him, knowing what she was going to say next was extremely selfish.
"Yes, if it means you'll be alive," she said, scowling at him.
"Isadora, it was you who told me living is better than surviving," Remus said softly, "You've been good to me, given me an opportunity to earn decent money, but money isn't the answer to everything. I cannot travel when or where I wish. I make travel arrangements to places I can never see as a werewolf."
Isadora stopped pacing and stared at Remus as he continued.
"At anytime the Werewolf Capture Unit can throw me against a wall, make me empty my pockets, take what they please and ask about my whereabouts on any given day. I'm not allowed to marry, Isadora. I am not allowed to have children. I am not allowed in certain establishments."
"No matter how much money I make that won't change, in fact, my money can be seized at any time for whatever reason they want to drum up, and I'd have no legal recourse. Werewolves aren't eligible to take legal action because I am considered an animal. Animals don't go to court," he said to the witch.
"I need to take that cure, Isadora. You see me as a man, but the rest of the wizarding world sees me as a werewolf. I have to get that geis lifted from me so I can live as a man. Don't you understand?" Remus asked her, "I have to take that cure, and I will…whether you support me or not, Isadora…though I sincerely hope you will."
Isadora stared at Remus. This was the first time, other than the 'boxer' incident that he had refused to do as she asked. But he had good reason. As sweet and meek as Remus was, he was still a strong man. She sighed. Again what she was going to say was incredibly selfish.
"I will support you, Remus, but only if I can be there to see you take it. I want to be there in case…in case…"
Isadora's eyes filled with tears. She couldn't bring herself to say it.
"I'm sure your son has no desire to see you unhappy, Isadora. Severus will do all he can to give me the cure as quickly as possible. But, your presence might be distracting to me," he said gently.
"I want to be there, Remus," Isadora said stubbornly.
Remus sighed, then folded as he always did.
"Very well, Isadora. I will talk to Severus," he said.
"I'll talk to him too," Isadora said, scowling.
Remus looked at her worriedly. He had a feeling that this talk between mother and son would be more like a clash of the Titans than a reasonable conversation.
Though he had no doubt who would win.
The month passed quickly for Isadora, too quickly. Remus was as cool and collected as ever, resigned to whatever fate had in store for him. Isadora was quite clingy but Remus didn't mind it at all. It was the first time in his life he had ever felt needed outside of when he was the DA Teacher at Hogwarts, and he gave her all the affection and attention she needed. It was as if the witch were trying to store up memories. Remus hoped that he survived. He didn't want Isadora spending her life looking into pensieves to relive their time together. The witch had been alone for a long time, and he didn't think she would easily fall into another relationship.
"Remus, I don't think I would ever find another wizard like you," Isadora said one night as they lay in her bed entwined around one another, basking in the afterglow. Isadora was leaning back against Remus' chest as he sat against the headboard, one arm wrapped around her belly, while he played in her hair. He loved her hair.
"Hopefully you won't have to, Isadora," he said, licking her neck affectionately. "But if anything should happen to me, I want you to be open to the possibility of meeting someone else, and not close yourself off as you did before. You are beautiful, Isadora, and deserve to be loved."
Isadora half turned to Remus.
"And do you love me, Remus?" she asked him softly.
Remus was silent for several moments.
"Yes," he replied softly, "I am sure I do, Isadora. How could I not?"
Isadora waited for him to ask her the same question. But the wizard didn't. He just tightened his hold on her and sat in silence for a while. Then he placed his lips against her ear and nibbled on it for a moment, then let out a small whimper. Isadora could feel him hardening against her back.
Forget the afterglow…it was time to build a new fire.
Farmer Rubin Fezwig was surprised to see so many people accompanying Remus when he arrived mid-afternoon on the day of the night of the full moon. Isadora had won her argument with Severus, Remus never even had to approach him about her witnessing the cure. Hermione was also there as was Kingsley Shacklebolt. Severus made sure to keep a wary eye on the werewolf, who was eyeing Isadora like a juicy slab of meat. The Potions Master kept himself between them, as did Kingsley. Remus had barely been allowed to say two words to the witch since they were forcibly separated earlier that morning when caught snogging in the bathroom of Isadora's flat.
Isadora looked dazed. Remus had quite thoroughly snogged her, and aggressively caressed her body…and she found she liked his hunger and aggressiveness. She also had a chance to feel his erection through his robes, and it felt very different pressed against her. Much bigger. If Severus had not found them, no doubt the werewolf would have had her bent over the vanity within the next five minutes, stroking her for all he was worth.
"I swear Mother," Severus had scolded her as he walked her back into the living room, holding Isadora securely by her elbow. "You're acting like a randy sixth year. And tell Remus to stop growling at me or he's going to lose a few vocal chords."
Rubin invited them all into his farmhouse, happy to have visitors. He listened to why they had come.
"A cure?" he said in disbelief.
"Yes," Severus said. "I have developed a cure that will end his transformations. One way or the other."
Both Hermione and Isadora scowled at him, as Remus stared at Isadora hungrily, seeming not to hear the Potions Master's statement. Kingsley moved a bit closer to the werewolf, in case he should make any moves toward the witch.
"That's a powerful claim, son," Rubin said, not quite believing him. So many had tried to find a cure for lycanthropy in the past and failed. "I hope it works out."
"It will," Hermione said, placing a hand on Isadora's shoulder as the black-haired witch stared at Remus with an almost equal hunger.
Everyone in the room could feel the attraction between the two. Severus' face was twisted in an almost constant scowl at his mother's obvious randiness. If the cure worked, the couple wouldn't be so intense.
Rubin fixed food for everyone but Remus, who declined to eat. Severus looked at him knowingly. The werewolf would devour his food with all the alacrity of a true wolf, and didn't want anyone to witness him doing so. Then the farmer seasoned and partially fried two large steaks, put them on a plate and took Remus out into the parlor, away from the rest of his guests. He settled the wizard in front of a small table, then placed the steaks and some napkins in front of him.
"You have to eat, son. Especially tonight. Those two wizards are going to be in that cage with you, and if something goes wrong and you haven't eaten, you're going to go for one or both of them. So eat those steaks."
Ruben returned to the kitchen, and after a moment, Remus lit into the steaks ravenously, growling and snarling as he devoured both of them quickly. He cleaned the plate with his tongue as well as his hands and wrists, then used the napkins for his face. He felt full.
Rubin returned and collected the plate and napkins, and Remus followed him back into the kitchen. Dusk was falling.
"It's time you all head out to the barn," Rubin said, studying Severus and Kingsley. "Are you two sure you want to be locked in that cage with him? It won't open until he's transformed back. You'll both be in a bad way if something goes wrong."
Severus looked at the farmer, then at Hermione.
"We have back up protection. If something goes wrong and Remus transforms without showing signs of the cure, then my wife will cast the Imperious curse on him," Severus said evenly.
"An Unforgivable? Those are illegal," the farmer said doubtfully. "She could end up in Azkaban."
"We have an Auror here. He will vouch for the necessity of the curse, as he will be in danger as much as I. The Ministry values their Aurors and will overlook an Unforgivable cast in the defense of one," the Potions Master replied smoothly. Kingsley nodded in agreement.
Everyone rose and headed out toward the barn. Rubin stopped on the porch. He'd go no farther.
"Good luck," he called after the group, then under his breath said, "Gods know you're going to need it."
He warded the house and went inside.
They entered the barn, Remus leading the way, Severus behind him, Kingsley behind Severus, and the two witches bringing up the rear. Remus walked straight for the enclosure, Severus and Kingsley right in step with him. If they were separated by too much distance, the door would close on the werewolf, effectively locking them out. They all entered, and the door slammed shut, locking behind the three wizards.
Isadora and Hermione stood very close together as they watched Severus remove bottles from his pocket. He had brought two of each. Remus removed his robes, and both Hermione and Isadora gasped. He was naked, and his fore-skinned organed was erect, the red glistening head sticking out from the folds of flesh. He was enormous.
"Oh my gods, he's HUGE, Isadora," Hermione gasped covering her mouth.
Severus heard her and scowled blackly at his wife commenting on another wizard's attribute.
"He's bigger than he's ever been with me," Isadora said, then she cocked her head. "So that's what he looks like with an uncircumcised wand. Kind of scary...but still…"
She licked her lips unconsciously.
Severus tried his best not to pay attention to what the witches were saying. His black eyes fell on Remus' member and he had to admit the wizard was hung like…well, like a werewolf. He started to feel a little competitive. Well, the cure would take him down a few inches.
"When it's that big, yes, it's very scary," Hermione agreed as they watched Remus shackle himself and sit in the chair.
Severus' brow furrowed. He was going to get that little witch. She didn't know what scary was. He scowled at Hermione.
"Check to see where the moon is," Severus said to her with an edge in his voice.
Hermione opened the barn door and looked out. The sky was overcast but she could make out a glow coming over the horizon.
"It's just starting to rise," she said, pulling the door partially closed. Severus uncorked the bottle of cure.
"Hold him, Kingsley," he said. The big Auror knelt and wrapped his arms around Remus in a loose full nelson.
"Now Remus, no matter what happens, you have to drink these potions. First the wolfsbane," he said. Severus put the bottle to the werewolf's lips and Remus drank it down.
"Good," Severus said. Then he called to Hermione.
"Where is the moon now?" he asked her.
"Just cleared the horizon. It's rising," she said, her stomach tight.
Isadora watched quietly as her son attended the wizard she loved. He just had to survive this.
Remus began to stiffen. The moon was starting to affect him.
"Drink this Remus, and remember you MUST drink the other two bottles, the one after this will save your life," he said as he brought the bottle to the wizard's mouth. Remus' eyes were shifting about but he drank the bottle down. He sat quietly for a moment, and then screamed as if he were being torn apart. He flung Kingsley away from him and transformed quickly, bursting into werewolf form and leaping on Severus, biting into his shoulder.
"Severus!" Hermione screamed, pulling out her wand.
"No!" Severus screamed at her as he wrestled to tear the werewolf from his shoulder. "Don't hex him!"
Hermione lowered her wand as Kingsley leaped on the beast's back and tore him away. The werewolf threw Kingsley off him then suddenly began to howl in agony, staggering about and transforming back into Remus. He fell to the floor shuddering
Severus flung himself on the wizard, turned him over and placed the blood cleansing potion to his lips
"Drink Remus!" he shouted at the wizard, "If you want to live, drink damn it!"
The shuddering wizard gulped weakly at the blood cleanser. Soon he stopped shuddering, but turned deathly pale, his breathing becoming so shallow it couldn't be seen.
"Oh my gods, Severus…you've killed him!" Isadora screamed.
Severus put the blood replenisher to the wizard's lips.
"Come on, Remus. Come on you bastard! Drink it! Don't you break my mother's heart! She'll never forgive me if you die," he hissed at the wizard, pouring the potion into his mouth and stroking his throat muscles. Remus swallowed, and immediately some color came back.
"Good. Good. More Remus…come on werewolf. Just a little more," Severus said softly, tilting the bottle some of it running out of the wizard's mouth. Kingsley stood over them, running a finger over a cut on his face. Remus coughed and swallowed a large amount of potion, almost choking on it but getting it down. After a minute his color was good. Severus looked down at his body. His penis was normal, circumcised and still big, but a noticeably bit smaller than his own. He purposely pulled him to his feet in such a way that the witches could see his organ, especially Hermione, then set him in the chair.
The door to the enclosure popped open. The cure had worked. There were three full humans in it now. No reason to stay locked. Remus' eyes fluttered.
"Not dead?" he gasped up at Severus who was checking his eyes.
"Unfortunately no, Remus, though you gave it a very good attempt. You also tried to kill me," Severus said.
Remus' eyes widened in horror.
"Gods, Severus…I bit you. I bit you in the shoulder when I was transformed," the wizard said, his voice breaking.
Hermione ran forward, crying terribly as she flung open the door and ran to her husband.
"No, Severus! No!" she cried.
He shushed her.
"Hermione, if I've been infected, I can take the cure, but as you see, I haven't transformed," he said coolly, unbuttoning his robes and revealing that his upper body was totally encased in chain mail. "I was prepared. I suspected Remus would try to take a chunk out of me. He wasn't successful. Kingsley also is wearing chain mail."
Hermione examined the chain mail. It was dented where the werewolf had bitten him, but the skin wasn't broken.
"You should have told me," Hermione scowled at him. "I was scared to death."
Isadora entered the enclosure, looking at Remus with frightened eyes. She had never seen a werewolf up close before, and his transformation was horrifying. But now he was the man she knew.
"Remus? Are you all right?" she asked him softly, seeming scared to approach him.
The wizard's gentle eyes rested on her, the softness in them reassuring.
"I'm fine, Isadora…just fine," he said softly, smiling at her tenderly.
The witch rushed to him and embraced him, kissing the wizard passionately.
Severus scowled at the sight of his mother embracing and kissing a naked wizard. He let it go on for a couple of seconds because he knew it was supposed to be a touching moment. Hermione had that "awww" look on her face. Finally he cleared his throat, grabbing Remus' robe.
Isadora stopped kissing the wizard and looked up at her son.
"Mother, you may have just scarred me for life," he said, thrusting the robes at Remus, "No son should ever witness his mother kissing a naked man, I don't care how old he is."
Isadora looked down at Remus, then blushed furiously, stepping away from him quickly. The wizard had an impressive erection. Hermione blushed too, and Severus saw it, and frowned blackly. Wait till she got home.
Remus stood up and slipped on his robes on, fastening them. He turned to Severus and stuck out his hand to the Potions Master.
Severus looked down at his hand for a moment. He could feel Hermione's eyes burning into his back. The Potions Master sighed and took the werewolf's hand, shaking it firmly before letting it go. Remus had a strong grip.
"How will I ever repay you for this miracle?" Remus asked him as the Potions Master gathered up the bottles and stuck them in his robes pocket. He turned to the cured wizard.
"In installments. Expect my first bill tomorrow," he said, exiting the enclosure and the barn, Hermione following close behind him.
"I guess it's safe to leave you two together now," he said in his deep, rich voice. He offered his hand to Remus.
"Congratulations, Lupin," he said a broad smile on his face. "You're going to be in the history books as the first wizard ever cured of lycanthropy, probably right next to Severus' sweet smiling face."
Remus and Isadora laughed. Kingsley gave Isadora a sharp bow and strode from the barn. There was a crack of apparation, then two more.
Remus and Isadora looked at each other, then embraced, neither one saying a word.
From the front porch, Rubin watched Remus and Isadora leave the barn, just as the clouds parted and the full moon shone down in all its pale glory. The couple walked through the moonlight for a few yards, kissed, then disapparated.
"I'll be gods damned. They did it. They actually cured that boy," Rubin said with a low whistle. "And to think it happened on my farm."
Rubin went to bed that night comforted. He may have lost a son to the curse, but it was on his farm that the curse itself finally died.
He could live with that.
Severus and Hermione apparated outside of Severus's lab. The Potions Master took down the ward around the building, unlocked the door and strode inside quickly, followed by Hermione. He walked up to the counter, took the bottles out of his pocket and placed them there.
Hermione walked up to him.
"Severus?" she said softly.
He turned to her, a scowl on his face.
"Yes?" he asked her, his black eyes glittering.
"You were wonderful tonight. You cured him. I am so proud of you," she said, wrapping her arms around his waist.
Severus looked down at her.
"Exactly how proud of me are you, Hermione?" he asked her, beginning to play in her hair.
"Very proud, Severus," she replied.
The Potions Master considered Hermione a moment, then suddenly grabbed her, lifted her and placed her on the counter. He cast a ward on the lab entrance and a silencing spell, then began to unbutton his robes, his eyes locked to hers.
"I think I deserve a reward, wife," he breathed.
"You do," Hermione agreed, her eyes going hot as she watched him remove his robes. She stared at the chain mail as he started to remove it.
"Leave that on," she said, her own eyes glittering now.
Hermione took out her wand and divestoed his shirt that was underneath the mail, leaving his pale, muscular torso bare beneath it. Severus hissed as the cold metal came in contact with his skin.
"You're becoming more and more kinky, witch," he said as he began to work on his trousers. "I noticed you had some compliments for Remus Lupin's tool."
Hermione frowned at him.
"I wouldn't call what I said about Remus a compliment, Severus," she said evenly, "I was just shocked."
"But all witches like huge wands, don't they?" Severus breathed.
Hermione didn't know what to say to this. If she said yes, then Severus would assume she liked Remus' tool. If she said no, he'd think she was lying. So she didn't say anything.
"Remus' penis was enhanced by his malady. I'm sure you got a good look at it when he was cured…you blushed hard enough," Severus said, lowering his trousers and slipping them over his feet one after the other. His silk boxers were hugely tented.
Hermione still didn't say anything, but she saw where this was going. Severus was jealous of her reaction to seeing Remus' tool. But it was shock that made her comment, nothing more.
Severus went through his discarded robes pocket and pulled out his wand. He pointed it at her.
"Divesto!" he snarled. Hermione was left naked, sitting on the counter.
"Remus is nothing compared to me, Hermione. I think I need to make that clear to you," he growled, his eyes sweeping over her body and coming to rest on her thighs.
"Severus, I can't believe you are jealous about this!" Hermione said, "You're the only wizard I want."
Severus lowered his boxers. He was at full-blown erection. It was so swollen it looked almost as big as Remus' when he was under the influence of the moon. He looked down at it, then at Hermione, whose eyes were wide as saucers as she looked at her husband's huge organ. He was immense. Jealousy and a desire to prove himself had added to his lust and arousal and he was truly a wizard to behold. With the addition of the chain mail he looked like something out of a bondage scene.
"Do you find this "scary" enough, witch?" he asked her, his mouth twisted into a leer.
"Why are you so…so big?" she gasped.
"The better to shag you senseless, witch. The only tool I want you admiring is mine," he said, gripping her by the arms and glaring at her. "I'm going to make sure you remember that."
Hermione looked at her husband, her belly tightening with desire despite his threats. Whenever Severus started addressing her as "witch" repeatedly, he had moved out of loving husband mode, into dominating Potions Master mode, which meant she was in for an old-time pounding like he used to give her when they first became lovers.
"I can smell you," he breathed, and he knelt, pushing her legs apart and drawing her to the edge of the counter.
Severus pressed his face into her sex, and Hermione gurgled, gripping his head with both hands. He breathed deeply, inhaling her warmth and musky scent, then wiggled his head back and forth, his large nose rubbing her peak.
"Oh fuck! Severus!" Hermione gasped as a gush of lubrication rolled out of her. Severus pulled back and looked up at her, a small grin on his face.
"My wand isn't the only big tool I have, witch," he said, "Remus can't compete with this."
Then he returned his glistening nose to her core and wriggled it against her more, holding her securely by her hips as she squealed, leaning back on her hands as a knot of desire bubbled and began to expand inside her. Shit. He was going to make her come with his nose.
Severus moved his nose in circles, alternating between tight small and large expansive motions massaging and working Hermione's soft, pink core, mashing and moving her nub, making the witch gasp and moan in pleasure, her breasts heaving as her belly grew tighter and tighter. The Potions Master could feel her heating up beneath his hands, a sign she was approaching climax.
The wizard throbbed powerfully…it was so engorged it felt tight and restricted, the silken flesh stretched as far as it could go over his shaft of iron. The mushroomed head was a deep purple, it was so full of blood, and aching for a long, deep sheath of hot, wet softness to be buried in. His wife was in for it. He felt as if he could ride her for hours.
Suddenly Hermione's thighs locked on either side of the Potions Master's head as she cried out, shuddering powerfully. Severus quickly thrust his tongue inside her heat as she locked down, her orgasm washing hotly over his tongue and pouring out over his chin as he sucked at her, drinking her musky release down, pushing at her legs to lessen their pressure as she keened.
She was delicious. He drank her in, then bathed her lavishly with his tongue, collecting all her essence, worshipping at her fountain as she gushed, twisting and moaning beneath her husband's supple tongue. Gods, he was amazing.
Severus didn't wait for her to come down, but stood up, his lips and nose glistening. He positioned himself against her clapping sex and drove home, his huge organ parting her roughly, filling her orifice with his hard, throbbing flesh. She keened again as he hit bottom savagely, jerking her petite body and groaning with pleasure as she pulsed around him.
Severus held himself still, looking down at her prone body propped up on his lab counter, thinking she was the sexiest witch in existence as Hermione's face contorted from the ache of him. She wasn't thinking of Remus now, that was for sure. Not when she was stuffed full of his hard, throbbing organ. His chain mail clinked lightly as he shifted slightly, preparing for the onslaught.
"Do you think there's anyone in this world who can take you around the world as good as I can, witch?" he asked her, his body trembling as he withheld himself from pounding into his wife.
Hermione's amber eyes opened, half-lidded and looked at him. She was still under the effects of her orgasm, and lost to the feeling of him filling her, so hot and so hard.
"No Severus," she whispered, pushing her pelvis forward, shifting slightly around him. He groaned.
"Do you want anyone other than me?" he asked her passionately, his chest tight as he waited for her answer.
Hermione was bound to him by marriage, by his sons and by the Wizarding Oath…but sometimes…sometimes Severus feared she might think of what it would be like to be with other wizards, though she never did. He was the only man she had ever known intimately. She might be curious about other men, other wizards who would be more than happy to appease her curiosity if given half the chance. She was a lovely witch after all.
Even the thought of Hermione thinking of another wizard in such a manner drove Severus wild, which was why he had such a violent reaction to her comments about Remus' tool. He knew deep down inside, it was just a comment made in reaction to the shock of seeing the wizard's werewolf attributes, but still it brought out his territorial instincts.
"Never," Hermione replied, "Never, ever, Severus. Only you for all my life," she said softly.
Her reply, combined with her softness wrapped around him caused the ache in his chest to ease, and his demeanor to soften somewhat.
"Good. Because I love you, witch. It would destroy me if you wanted any other," he said, his voice trembling with emotion. Hermione looked up at her husband, touched by his admission.
"You don't ever have to worry about that, Severus," she whispered, "It has always been you. It always will."
Severus couldn't hold back no longer and pulled back, driving himself into his wife as deep as he could, burying himself in her body with a vengeance, hissing as her inner walls slid around him, welcoming him, bathing him in wetness, softness and surrender as she shrieked from his ardor. He began to pound her hard, claiming every inch of her warm, willing body, his eyes locked to her face as she jerked beneath his strokes, the chain mail clinking and rattling rhythmically as he took her on the counter of his Potions lab, christening it in the process, bringing it into the realm of their love.
Hermione bucked and writhed under him, loving the plunge and jerk of her husband pummeling her body, his black eyes hot and locked to her face, the intense expression of concentration as he rolled his hips, ramming into her at different angles. He was beautiful, strong and lusty, his pale body flexing between her thighs, veins standing out in his neck as he focused on taking her, giving her pleasure as he took his own. Gods, it was so good to be the object of his focus, of his desire, of his need. He was such a brilliant man, and he loved her.
Severus bent over her body and locked his lips to hers, continuing to drive into her almost desperately as he tasted her heat, their tongues wrestling, their mouths moving hungrily against each others'. He felt so much pleasure, so much softness, so much acceptance as he took his beautiful wife, his jealousy giving way to gratefulness, gratefulness that she chose to love him.
Severus pulled back from her mouth long enough to gasp, "You sweet witch," then fell back to her lips, his body hunching into hers uncontrollably, pulling her back down into his stroke as she was driven across the counter. Gods, she felt so good. Nothing should feel this damn good.
The Potions Master rode Hermione hungrily for a good, long time. He couldn't get enough of her as she shrieked and gasped from his ardor. Sweat was streaming down the Potions Master's body now, and Hermione's skin had the imprint of chain mail on it, Severus was clutching her so closely as he took her, moving into the zone now, his body pistoning with a mind of its own. Hermione took it, every aching, thirsting stroke, her nails catching on the links as she held on to her lover for dear life while he possessed every inch of her. She was rising again, heading for that sweetest pinnacle, her body giving in to his power and surrendering.
Severus felt her tightening around him and growled, thrusting for all he was worth, his own body giving in to pleasure, his plunging organ tingling as he approached release, electricity shooting up and down his spine before it gathered at his apex, his balls drawing up so tightly he gasped from the pressure. Hermione erupted and he followed her, climaxing at almost the same time, thrown into that perfect place of bliss as their bodies gave way, both screaming their pleasure and their completion, shuddering against each other as pulse after pulse after pulse of satisfaction washed over their entwined forms. They were one, and whole and perfect.
Severus' body jerked as he shot into Hermione…thrusting weakly in protest to the approaching end of their lovemaking, to the oncoming separation. He would love to stay in this place of union with her forever, wrapped inside her for eternity. But life required more than bliss, and soon the pulsing died out and he found himself alone, still embedded in her soft body…but not truly alone. Not as long as he had her love.
Severus kissed Hermione gently, then lifted himself from her body, sated, vindicated and unwilling to pull out of her. His eyes went hard with concern as he saw the chain link pattern pressed into her skin. Hermione lay panting, seeming oblivious to the way he had marked her, satisfaction emblazoned on her face as she opened her eyes and looked up at him.
"I love you Severus Snape," she said hoarsely, her voice raw from shrieking.
He swallowed at the sweet simple honesty of her declaration. He almost felt as if he couldn't speak, but he did.
"No more than I love you, wife," he replied, leaning over her and kissing her once again. He was soft inside her now, and with an effort, forced himself to withdraw. She let out a little gasp as she felt their physical connection break, but she could still feel the love that bound them. That would never break.
"You have marks," Severus said as she pushed up on the counter.
Hermione looked down at the criss-crossed pattern.
"It's not the first time you've marked me, it won't be the last," she replied, her eyes full of love.
He pulled her up.
"Still you need some potion for that," he said as he traced the pattern with one long, pale finger. "It will hurt soon."
"I don't mind your hurt, Severus," she replied.
He looked at her consideringly.
"Hermione Snape," he said evenly, "If you aren't careful, you are going to get shagged again."
Hermione arched an eyebrow at him.
"And that's bad, how?" she asked him, grinning sexily.
Severus shook his head at her wantonness.
"And you call me insatiable," he said, kissing her again.
Severus' first act was to visit his solicitor with the instructions for the creation of the Lycanthropy Cure and a prepared bottle. Mr. Onsten got right on the patent papers, actually owling the forms while Severus was there and getting confirmation they had been received.
"You're going to make a fortune," the solicitor said.
He wrote down the name of an accountant and handed the parchment to Severus.
"Artley Snodgrass. Best accountant/investor in the biz. He's a goblin, completely trustworthy and a wiz at growing galleons. You should stop by and see him," Onsten said, giving the Potions Master a knowing nod.
Severus thanked him, left the office and apparated to his mother's flat. Isadora and Remus had a date at the Ministry, and he was accompanying them there.
"He's what?" the narrow-eyed jowly wizard behind the desk said incredulously.
"Cured," Isadora said, her eyes flashing. "Now you give him all his rights. He's no longer a werewolf."
The wizard sneered.
"I will do no such thing. There is no cure for Lycanthropy," he said flatly.
"There is now," Severus said coolly. "I created it."
The wizard looked at the Potions Master.
"And who the hell are you supposed to be?" he asked nastily. This guy was begging to be hexed.
"Professor Severus Snape, Potions Master," Severus said, his black eyes glittering at the wizard who seemed taken aback. Everyone knew about Professor Snape…he was purported to be the best there was, or damn near it.
The wizard's tone became more respectful.
"Well Professor, I suppose we can examine Lupin at least," he said looking at the gentle-eyed wizard. The woman next to him had her arm tucked in his. She looked like the Professor's sister. She was doing a werewolf? She'd better be using contraceptives or he'd be in Azkaban.
"That's Mr. Lupin," the woman spat at him.
"Mr. is a term designated for humans, not animals, Miss," the wizard replied as he stood up and walked to the door.
"Follow me, please," the wizard said, leading them through the hallway and into a room that had a large chair and shackles embedded in the floor. There was a counter that had a number of wands and potions on it as well as several wicked looking clubs.
The wizard, whose name was Felton, pointed at the chair.
"Sit there Lupin and shackle up," he said, leaving the room. He returned with two burly wizards, who walked to the counter and picked up the large clubs, positioning themselves behind Remus.
"What are they for?" Isadora demanded, scowling blackly.
"In case Lupin here gets boisterous," Felton replied grabbing a potion off the counter and walking up to the wizard with it.
Felton looked a bit bored. He knew what was going to happen when Remus drank the potion. The usual reaction. Well, at least they would all get the hell out of his department.
He uncapped the bottle and held it to Lupin's mouth.
"Drink up," he said.
The wizards behind Remus tensed, raising their clubs, ready to beat him senseless. That potion made werewolves go crazy, though they didn't transform.
"What are they giving him, Severus?' Isadora asked.
"Probably a moonflower-based potion," Severus replied, "If he's a werewolf, he will react violently to it though he won't transform. It doesn't react on a human at all."
Remus drank the potion down and just sat there.
Felton stared at him.
"Drink it all," he said putting the bottle to his lips again, thinking Remus must not have drank enough.
Remus swallowed down the whole bottle and remained seated with no reaction other than a little grimace from the taste of the potion. Felton stared at him.
"I don't believe it," he said, "I don't fucking believe it. You should be getting the shit beat out of you right now."
"If I were a werewolf," Remus replied, "which I'm not."
Felton gaped at him some more then said, "Wait right here," and ran from the room.
The two burly wizards lowered their clubs and looked at Remus perplexed, but didn't say anything. They weren't paid to talk. They were paid to beat the shit out of werewolves.
In about ten minutes, Felton re-entered the room followed by five white-bearded wizards in lab coats, their wands drawn. They surrounded Remus and proceeded to do all types of tests on him, one drawing his blood and taking it away. He came back five minutes later.
"His blood is completely human. There is no werewolf blood in it at all," he said to the others. "This wizard is entirely human. He has been cured."
"How is this possible?" one of the wizards asked Remus.
Remus pointed at Severus.
"He discovered the cure. Professor Severus Snape," he said.
Severus glowered at the men. He knew the type.
"Where is this cure? We must…we must examine it…break it down…we…" another lab coated wizard said to the Potions Master.
"At the patent office," Severus replied evenly, "If you want it, you're going to have to buy it like everyone else. And if you try to duplicate it, I'll see you in court. It is my discovery."
The wizards all stared at him. Not only had he created the cure, he had effectively protected it. They couldn't take one iota of credit.
"Now, about taking Remus off your rolls," said Isadora. "He's no longer a werewolf so is entitled to full rights under the law. We want that done immediately."
Remus went from office to office collecting all of his files. When he stopped in the Werewolf Capture Unit, he eyed several wizards who used to rough him up once a month. He threw his papers on the counter
"What are you doing here, Lupin? Turning yourself in for something we missed?" one wizard asked him, pulling the papers toward him. His brown eyes read them, then narrowed, then widened…looking up at him.
"Shit," he said. "You've been cured."
Remus gave him a rather wolfish smile.
"That's right. Spread it around because the next time you goons try to harass me, wands will blast and I'll have you up on charges. Now give me my files," he said.
The wizard walked to a large file cabinet, looked through it and pulled out a very thick folder of paperwork. Remus leafed through it, placed it on the counter, and pulled out his wand.
"Incendio," he said, and the folder burst into flames, quickly turning to ash.
"So much for all your hard earned detective work," Remus said with a nasty smirk. He took Isadora's arm and left the office.
The wizard looked at his associates.
"Shit. We're going to be seriously downsized," he said, scowling.
Several weeks later, Hermione sat in her living room, matching names to photos. They were all photos of wizards that fathered illegitimate children and gave no support. The Quibbler was going to do a spread on them. Luna Lovegood's father loved to cause uproars, and this spread would certainly do that, as half the men were married and in good positions.
Eli and Demetrius were gurgling, laying belly down on a blanket laid out on the floor, reaching for toys and lifting their heads looking all around and generally being good happy babies. Eli was watching them…occasionally tickling their feet and dancing toys just out of reach.
Suddenly the flames turned green and Severus stepped through. He had a smile on his face, a rarity.
"Well, the Summer Vacation at Hogwarts has officially started, and I gave Albus my notice. He's going to have to find another Potions Master. I am officially liberated from teaching any children other than my own," he said, looking at his boys affectionately as they looked up at him.
"That's good Severus," Hermione said absently as she worked on the photos.
Severus scowled. She hadn't heard a word he said. He stalked over to the table to see what she was working on. His eyebrows lifted.
"Deadbeat dads," Hermione said to him. "All of these wizards have fathered children and abandoned them. Will be in next week's edition of the Quibbler."
"This is going to cause an uproar. Isn't that Wankton?" Severus asked her as he looked at the heavy-jowled Dean of her former university.
"Yep. And the mother of his child was a college student. She was having trouble with her grades when Dean Wankton offered to "help" her. Bastard," Hermione seethed.
"Damn Hermione. He's going to lose his position," Severus said.
"He deserves to. Having sex with a student then leaving her to fend for herself with his baby. He's married too," she said, frowning. "Wizarding marriages can't be dissolved but I have a feeling he's going to wish they could once his wife finds out about this."
Just then the floo turned green and Isadora stepped through, two teddy bears in her arms.
"My babies!" she exclaimed, immediately dropping to the blanket and planting kisses all over Eli, then Demetrius. Both babies laughed in that stuttered way young babies do.
"Look what grandma has for youuuu!" Isadora gushed, dancing a bear up to each child. Both promptly bit into the furry toys, drooling all over them.
"They like them!" Isadora said, smiling broadly.
Severus noticed a flash on her hand as she played with the babies.
"Mother? What's that you're wearing? Tell me it's a friendship ring," Severus said, scowling blackly.
Hermione looked up. Isadora rose from the blanket, extending her hand. Hermione looked at the ring. It was gold with diamonds running around the band.
"That's not a friendship ring, Severus," Hermione said rising then running to Isadora and embracing her. "Congratulations!"
Severus was stunned. His mother was wearing an engagement ring. Which meant she was going to marry Remus Lupin, which meant Remus Lupin was going to be…damn. The Potions Master pinched his nose as Isadora and Hermione gushed about the ring and the upcoming marriage.
"Mother…there are benefits to your 'living in sin,'" he said tightly, "such as me not having Remus Lupin for a stepfather."
Isadora looked at her son, smirking.
"Don't worry. I won't insist on you calling him 'Daddy. 'Father Remus' or 'Poppop' will do nicely," she quipped, both she and Hermione dissolving into laughter as Severus scowled at her.
But Isadora did look happy. Radiant in fact. Severus knew weeks ago she loved the former werewolf, and now that Remus was doing well, cured and taking care of the brunt of the bills, he wasn't so bad.
"I will call him a medi-witch if he even hints at being fatherly toward me, Mother, because he's going to need one," Severus seethed.
Hermione shook her head.
"I don't think you're going to have to worry about him calling you 'son' Severus," she said, her eyes drifting down to Isadora's slightly rounded belly.
Severus' eyes widened.
"Mother! No! No nonono!" he moaned, stepping forward and looking at her belly closely. Isadora wrapped a slim pale hand around it protectively.
"Severus! Yes! Yes yesyesyes!" she replied grinning.
Severus collapsed on the sofa.
"I can't believe it. I'm going to have a brother or sister younger than my children, and they're going to have an uncle or aunt younger than they are. They're going to think we're hillbillies," he groaned, pinching his nose again.
"You'll get used to it," she said, walking over to him and kissing his forehead. She stuck out her stomach. "Want to touch?"
Severus looked up at her for a moment, then lightly pressed his hand against his mother's belly. His eyes softened a little as he remembered doing this to Hermione. He took his hand away.
"I guess I'll get used to the idea," he groused. "I have no choice after all."
"How is Remus taking it?" Hermione asked Isadora.
"He's ecstatic, though I'm having a hard time getting him to f…" Isadora began
"Mother!" Severus said, stricken, "I really don't want to hear this!"
Hermione and Isadora once again collapsed into giggles, much to Severus' annoyance.
"Sorry son," Isadora giggled, not looking sorry at all. Hermione couldn't even speak she was so broken up.
Severus stood up.
"I'll leave you two to discuss whatever sordid topics newly pregnant witches discuss," he said, turning with a billow of robes and striding toward the front door, heading for his lab. He scowled as they tittered after him. Witches.
Well, all in all Life had turned out pretty good for Severus Snape. Voldemort was dead, he was married to a loving, kinky wife, his mother was back in his life, he had two beautiful sons, galleons out the ying yang and a new business that was taking off quite nicely. He was also free of Hogwarts forever. Not too bad for a former man of misery.
No, not too bad at all.
A/N: And that's the end of "Becoming Familiar with a Man of Misery." I hoped you enjoyed it.