My name is not, never has been, and never will be; J.K. Rowling.

Full Summary: When Remus and Harry fought with each other in Grimmauld Place, Remus told Harry he'd made a 'grave mistake in marrying Tonks'. But what if it weren't for the reasons he cites in Deathly Hallows? What if there were another, totally different reason... that had to do with Harry himself? RL/HP.

SPOILER WARNINGS: Beware, this runs from Deathly Hallows. If you've not read it, then I suggest you don't read this. Well, unless you don't mind spoilers; in which case you'll probably just be rather confused. This doesn't get into many spoilers, really– but just to prevent someone from getting irritable with me for 'wrecking the final book' or something, I'm warning you. xP

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Elucidation, verb - to make lucid or clear; throw light upon; explain: 'an explanation that elucidated his recent strange behavior.'

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Lupin hesitated.
"I'll understand if you can't confirm this, Harry, but the Order is under the impression that Dumbledore left you a mission."
"He did," Harry replied, "and Ron and Hermione are in on it and they're coming with me."
"Can you confide in me what the mission is?"
Harry looked into the prematurely lined face, framed in thick but greying hair, and wished that he could return a different answer.
"I can't, Remus, I'm sorry. If Dumbledore didn't tell you, I don't think I can."
"I thought you'd say that, said Lupin, looking disappointed. "But I might still be of some use to you. You know what I am and what I can do. I could come with you to provide protection. There would be no need to tell me exactly what you were up to."
Harry hesitated. It was a very tempting offer, though how they would be able to keep their mission secret from Lupin if he were with them all the time he could not imagine.
Hermione, however, looked puzzled.
"But what about Tonks?" she asked.
"What about her?" said Lupin.
"Well," said Hermione, frowning, "you're married! How does she feel about you going away with us?"
"Tonks will be perfectly safe," said Lupin. "She'll be at her parents' house."
There was something strange in Lupin's tone; it was almost cold. There was also something odd in the idea of Tonks remaining hidden at her parents' house; she was, after all, a member of the Order and, as far as Harry knew, was likely to want to be in thick of the action.
"Remus," said Hermione tentatively, "is everything all right ... you know ... between you and--"
"Everything is fine, thank you," said Lupin pointedly.
Hermione turned pink. There was another pause, an awkward and embarrassed one, and then Lupin said, with an air of forcing himself to admit something unpleasant, "Tonks is going to have a baby."
"Oh, how wonderful!" squealed Hermione.
"Excellent!" said Ron enthusiastically.
"Congratulations," said Harry.
Lupin gave an artificial smile that was more like a grimace, then said, "So ... do you accept my offer? Will three become four? I cannot believe that Dumbledore would have disapproved, he appointed me your Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, after all. And I must tell you that I believe that we are facing magic many of us have never encountered or imagined."
Ron and Hermione both looked at Harry.
"Just -- just to be clear," he said. "You want to leave Tonks at her parents' house and come away with us?"
"She'll be perfectly safe there, they'll look after her," said Lupin. He spoke with a finality bordering on indifference. "Harry, I'm sure James would have wanted me to stick with you."
"Well," said Harry slowly, "I'm not. I'm pretty sure my father would have wanted to know why you aren't sticking with your own kid, actually."
Lupin's face drained of colour. The temperature in the kitchen might have dropped ten degrees. Ron stared around the room as though he had been bidden to memorize it, while Hermione's eyes swivelled backwards and forwards from Harry to Lupin.
"You don't understand," said Lupin at last.
"Explain, then," said Harry.
Lupin swallowed.
"I -- I made a grave mistake in marrying Tonks. I did it against my better judgement, and I have regretted it very much ever since."
"I see," said Harry, "so you're just going to dump her and the kid and then run off with us?"
Lupin sprang to his feet: his chair toppled over backwards, and he glared at them so fiercely that Harry saw, for the first time ever, the shadow of the wolf upon his human face.

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"You don't understand!" Lupin growled in evident agitation, "Er..." Lupin turned to Hermione and Ron, his face still shadowed by the wolf. "You two, get out. Now."

Hermione and Ron looked baffled, then Ron too stood up abruptly and knocked his chair over backwards. Still looking bewildered and not just a little angry, he said, "Whatever you have to say to Harry you can say to us. We'll hear it later, anyway." Hermione nodded her agreement.

Lupin's eyes narrowed. "I'm not so sure," he muttered cryptically. "but if so, then hear it later. Out."

Harry looked angry and made to stand up, but Lupin was already in front of him. A heavy hand met his shoulder, and pressed him firmly, though oddly not unkindly, back down.

Now it was Harry's turn to look bewildered. "Remus, what...?" but Harry was quickly silenced with a look from Lupin.

Hermione seemed to have decided that obeying Lupin was the best choice for the moment, since he seemed to be close to lashing out at one of them if they did not vacate the room very shortly. And so she did, dragging a protesting Ron along with her. As their footsteps faded up the stairwell, Lupin waved his wand briefly at the door, watching to ensure it swung shut and- judging by the soft 'click' that followed-- locked.

Lupin then threw up a couple silencing spells for good measure, and turned to face Harry. For first time since they'd met, Harry was suddenly aware of, and intimidated by, just how close Lupin was to him. Lupin didn't seem wholly-- well, Lupin. Lupin glared in thought at the wall for a while, before eventually turning to face Harry.

"Harry," he said, his voice picking up a slightly softer tone. "You're of course aware of my... condition."

Harry nodded suspiciously.

"Though I don't suspect you've ever done any extra investigation." Lupin smiled teasingly, the dark air of before seemingly evaporated.

Again, Harry nodded; though this time somewhat guiltily.

"I hadn't thought you would. Hermione would be expected to inform you of anything pressing..." Lupin muttered. "Though I doubt she could have foreseen this." Lupin's tone picked up a slightly bitter note. He then paused for a moment, seeming to collect himself and taking a breath.

"I'm sure you're also aware that you've now just recently come of age." Harry stared at him.

"Yeah, but... what's that got to do with anything?" Harry raised an eyebrow.

"Reaching the age of majority does not simply mean coming of age from a legal viewpoint, Harry. For a wizard or a witch, coming of age is also the time in which your magic identifies you as mature... and changes slightly, as such. Your magical signature is probably slightly different, your body will probably finish the last of its growing in short order, and any previously dormant blood traits activate. All in all, your magic now considers you... an adult." Lupin paced slightly in front of the chair Harry was seated in.

Harry stayed quiet.

"Now. I am a werewolf. As such, there are certain aspects of my life that are not, and probably never can be, entirely human. Of course, there's the full moon as one of them... but I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned to you any other impacts my blood has, have I? Some of them are simple things- like enhanced senses, and such. I'm more agile than your average human, and stronger, as well..." Lupin sighed.

"But while these things can have an impact on my life, they don't particularly have much effect on me, usually... and I can fight most effects of my wolf off." Lupin then stopped his pacing and turned his head to stare Harry down; and Harry felt the bizarre urge to shiver.

"Some things, however..." Lupin stepped closer to Harry and put his hands down on the armrests of the chair, either side of Harry. As Lupin leaned forwards, bringing himself eye level with Harry, Harry couldn't help but feel that Lupin really needed to re-learn the meaning of personal space...

"I cannot resist." Lupin was almost nose to nose with Harry now, and Harry had to remind himself to keep breathing. This was just... too weird. Harry pressed himself against the back rest of the chair in a vain attempt at moving away just a little, though it didn't do him much good.

"... Remus...?" Harry muttered, eyes wide and confused. He could feel Lupin's breath on his lips...

"You see, Harry," Harry actually did shiver at that point. He'd never heard his name said like-- like that! Lupin's voice was nearly a breathy purr, was this an effect of his wolf?

"My wolf has a... natural compliment, if you will. One person in the entire world that the wolf deems our most suitable match in every aspect. How the wolf knows just who that is, I've no idea-- but it always does. Of course, some lycans can go their entire lives, and never encounter this one person. Highly unlikely, but it's possible." Lupin cocked his head to the side slightly, looking thoughtful.

"After all, the compliment doesn't need to be born in the same place-- they could be countries away. They aren't even always in the same generation; werewolves and their compliments can have some unusual age differences between them." Lupin was smirking slightly, and Harry could again see some of the wolf in his expression. It certainly wasn't an expression Harry usually saw on his face, and Harry wasn't so sure he liked where this was going.

"But by nature, a werewolf and it's compliment are always drawn to each other. Regardless of distance or time, fate always conspires to do its best to bring the pair to each other." Harry felt like he couldn't move.

"Now, if the compliment is younger, the were will not be able to sense it's compliment until they've reached magical maturity, even if they have met them prior. It's also possible for the compliment to die before the were has ever managed to encounter them or before they come of age... in which case the wolf will always remain searching and probably die mourning. But if the compliment comes of age and both are still alive, the wolf will feel it. Again: regardless of distance." Lupin had shifted impossibly closer again, and Harry feared that if he were to move at all Lupin's lips would be against his. Harry's mind felt like it was going to shut down-- and wasn't this supposed to be about Lupin neglecting his wife...?

"The ministry, while not fans of werewolves, know this-- and the risks of trying to stop it. Because of this, any marriage either party was involved in prior is considered null..." Lupin smiled.

"And the were is entitled to pursue their-- as the ministry defines it-- 'mate'."

Harry's eyes were impossibly wide, Harry had a sneaking suspicion he knew where this was headed.

"Wh--" Harry tried, but his voice came out higher and breathier than he'd liked. He cleared his throat and tried again, "Erm, what happens if the... uh, 'mate' can't be..."

"Claimed?" Lupin said softly, his breath fanning across Harry's face. Harry flushed and resisted the urge to nod, that would move him--

"It's not so much a problem during the majority of the month, though the wolf does protest greatly. It's more an issue of the full moon; for both partners." Lupin sent Harry a pointed look that Harry couldn't even begin to define.

"On the full moon, the longing will intensify to mentally unbalancing proportions-- even if the werewolf is using wolfsbane. The werewolf won't care for anything but finding, and claiming, it's compliment. Effects will show up in the compliment, as well. While the compliment won't transform or anything of the like, they will start feeling the usual effects the full moon has on a werewolf." Harry was starting to find it difficult to concentrate, what with how Lupin's mouth was moving so close to his-- erk.

"They, in turn, will care only about finding their mate..." Lupin paused for a moment and frowned. "Which is why the ministry doesn't interfere, and why it's dangerous for the pair not to commit themselves sooner. Anyone that gets in the way of a rampaging werewolf is not in for a particularly good evening-- and there's always far more risk that the werewolf might bite their partner by accident. Some wolves don't care; they'll deliberately bite their partner so as to be able to keep their compliment with them even during the full moon." Lupin's brows furrowed at the thought.

"But if the werewolf does not want to force the werewolf lifestyle on their partner..." Lupin trailed off. Harry stared, that sounded... not good. So, it didn't matter how much a compliment protested, their instincts would go on override during the full moon anyway?

Lupin looked at Harry, examining him carefully. He took a deep breath, and then ploughed on, "Harry, I've come to think my compliment was probably dead, or that I would never encounter them. Hence the fact that I've tried a relationship with Tonks. And while a werewolf can, sometimes, manage a relationship with someone that is not their compliment, that relationship has no chance if the compliment shows up." Lupin was leering at Harry now, as Harry stared horrified back.

"... No. No, nonononono. You-- you've gotta be mistaken."

The smirk was back on Lupin's face.

"Oh, I assure you, I am most certainly not wrong. You just came of age, Harry..." Lupin was practically purring Harry's name again, delighting in the shiver it caused. Harry didn't care at this point and turned his head to the side in denial, resolutely ignoring the pleasant warmth that raced through his body when his lips actually brushed Lupin's by accident, even though only barely. Lupin grinned now, and lifted one of his knees to rest between Harry's legs on the chair. Oh, bloody hell.

"But... but then, why didn't you say something at the birthday party?" Harry squeaked, pushing his body backwards still and not meeting Lupin's eyes.

"I wanted to, believe me. But then Scrimgeour showed up and I had to leave..." Lupin sighed lightly, "but at least it gave me a chance to discuss the situation with Tonks. And then I saw you again briefly at the wedding, but I didn't get the chance to speak with you. Er," Lupin flushed a little, "Sorry if I seemed a little grumpy. Not getting the chance to speak with you has been making me irritable. Tonks has been pretty kind about it though--"

That made Harry protest. "Tonks! What--"

"I've already spoken with her. She and I remain on good terms..." Lupin breathed, "and you," Lupin leaned forwards, and Harry stilled abruptly as he felt Lupin's lips brushing lightly against his ear. "are my mate."

Though Harry had essentially already reached this conclusion, it still sounded far more terrifying when he heard it aloud. Harry let out an undignified squeak in response and flailed his arms in an attempt to move away, tipping his chair over backwards unintentionally. Harry whined lightly when the chair hit the floor hard, vaulting Harry over backwards in an awkward half somersault to land sprawled and dazed on the floor.

Harry jumped slightly when Lupin's light chuckle reached him, turning his head to stare up at the man. Was that what this all was, Harry thought dimly, some horrible, warped, marauder joke? Harry was torn between the urge to smack Lupin upside the head and to laugh as well.

"You great prat, I thought you were serious." Harry smiled teasingly. Lupin blinked.

"Oh, no-- I'm not joking." Lupin smirked again, a leering expression once more on his face.

"You just look adorable, sprawled like that."

Now Harry blinked. "Wha--?"

Lupin sighed. "Ah, Harry." He said, with a fond smile on his face.

Lupin knelt down beside him, catching his jaw in one hand and keeping Harry's face turned to him.

"What am I going to do with you...?"

Harry stared at him, bewildered once more. Lupin smiled lightly, and softly brushed the pad of his thumb across Harry's cheek and down his neck.

Harry firmly stomped down the soft pleased sigh that was trying to escape. What the heck was with him? In fact, what the heck was with Lupin?

Lupin shifted, rising over Harry and then kneeling with his legs on either side of Harry's hips. This shook Harry out of his daze; and upon realizing Lupin was now practically straddling him bucked his hips up and mustered up the best firm look he could manage.

"Ok, if this is a joke, that's far enough. Gerrof me." Harry said, glaring.

Lupin 'tsked', and leaned forward, again speaking against Harry's ear. "... I would suggest," Lupin nipped lightly at Harry's ear before continuing, "that you do not do that again." Lupin smirked at the rising heat he could feel creeping across Harry's face.

"What-- do you mean?" Harry asked.

Lupin smiled, and the ground his hips down against Harry's, grinning at the shocked gasp that was torn from Harry's mouth. Lupin moved down a little and licked at Harry's neck briefly: a pleased response. "Why, press your hips against mine." Lupin spoke, unnervingly calmly.

Harry blushed, feeling shame bubble up in his throat as he felt himself starting to get slightly hard. "Erm, Remus-- hold on; what-- what would everyone else say about this? And... my Father? I mean; you must have made some mistake. I can't be..." Harry resisted the urge to tip his head to the side to give Lupin better access to his neck for whatever the heck he was doing; and oh, that mouth felt good...

Lupin sighed, pausing what he was doing. "Harry, please understand that anyone who knows anything about werewolves will probably be fine with this. They know this is in our nature; there is no more perfect match for either of us anywhere in the entire world. And I assure you, your parents would be alright; they knew quite a great deal about werewolves because they knew me for as long as they did." Lupin scraped his teeth softly against Harry's neck in reassurance.

"I would apologize for bad press this would probably cause, because there are bound to be people that don't want their 'golden boy' mated to a werewolf. But considering I'm going to be coming with you on a journey who-knows-where for who-knows-how-long, press doesn't particularly concern me at the moment."

"But--" Harry started, but stopped when Lupin growled, tired of questions. He lifted his head from Harry's neck, darkening amber staring down into bright green eyes. And as if Harry had swallowed a calming potion, Harry suddenly paused and realized just how comfortable Lupin's weight and warmth was above him.

He knew to trust his instincts, considering they'd saved his life on many occasions before. But this wasn't a life or death situation... this was practically-- like, like marriage, or something! Just... for werewolves. Harry blushed at his train of thought, a random image of himself in a great fluffy white dress walking down an isle towards Remus popping into him mind. Harry shook his head-- what was he thinking!?

"But--" Harry tried again, but all words following were immediately muffled by Lupin's lips pressing firmly down on his. Harry's eyes widened, the reality of this situation pressing in on him finally like a weight. Yes, his body was arching up against Lupin's and his arms were instinctively moving to wrap around Lupin's neck; but that didn't mean he, as in Harry as a person, particularly wanted anything to do with this!

... Until Lupin's tongue swept insistently against his lips, and Harry's mouth fell open to say something in protest-- and then Lupin's tongue was twined with Harry's, and it was like Harry's mind had clouded over. Oh God-- the heat, the warmth, the... absolute Lupin.

Harry shyly tipped his head upwards to press back, shivering as a satisfied growl reverberated from Lupin's throat. Maybe there was something to that whole 'perfect match' thing; this felt mind blowing in comparison to the hesitant and slightly awkward moments he'd had with Cho, and even the recent kiss with Ginny paled drastically in comparison to this. This-- this was like a wave had swept over him, and now he was floating-- drowning, in an endless ocean of this... feeling.

Harry couldn't bring himself to care as a needy sounding whine slipped from his throat, particularly when it seemed to please Remus. Remus growled in approval again, and then Harry felt hands wandering to the base of his shirt, slipping insistently underneath.

Harry arched into the contact as Lupin's fingers brushed over his stomach and sides, it was like a frighteningly pleasant cold fire was licking at his body wherever Lupin touched him. Harry shivered with loss as Lupin pulled away slightly to slide Harry's shirt up his body, though thankfully his lips stayed melded over Harry's.

Lupin leaned back down when Harry's shirt was pushed up to his arms, and Harry sighed lighting into Remus's mouth in contentment. Harry both couldn't and didn't care to hold back what sounded like soft whimpers and mewls as Remus's fingers moved higher, teasing over his ribs and brushing far too lightly over Harry's nipples.

A light keening sound escaped his throat as Remus's hands grew more insistent, and one of Harry's legs moved to wrap around behind Remus, drawing him closer and pressing their hips together. With a pleased groan, Remus started grinding his hips against Harry's again, varying pressures and speeds to find a pace and pressure the both of them liked most.

Harry's pleasure filled mewling, Remus's pleasure filled growling, and heated pants filled the room. Remus's pace increased as the pair approached completion, Harry pushing his hips up needily to meet Remus's. And with a loud whine, Harry buried his face in Remus's shoulder and came, back bowing and Remus's name in a breath on his lips. Remus growled and came shortly after, crushing his lips firmly against Harry's and clutching hard at Harry's sides.

It was in this state-- the pair panting, disheveled, Remus draped over Harry, and Harry's shirt still hiked up-- that Hermione found them as she burst into the room.

A stunned silence filled the air, Hermione in too much shock to move to prevent Ron from following in after her, already rambling.

"Yeah, sorry mate, but it's been practically an hour and we couldn't hear anything and the door was locked. And y'know, with Remus actin' kinda funny we got kinda worried, and-- bloody hell!" Ron's jaw dropped. "What the hell are you two doing?!"

Remus had picked himself up calmly, pulling Harry up with him and wrapping an arm possessively around Harry's waist. Harry, evidently still completely out of it and not completely to terms with how he'd just been found by his best friends, buried his face into Remus's chest and hid.

Hermione's gaze, on the other hand, had changed from one of stunned shock to analytical. The gears in her mind were obviously turning, and when she looked up to Lupin with a questioning gaze, Lupin nodded. Hermione gasped, and then squealed in girlish delight.

"Oh-- Remus, really?!" Hermione exclaimed.

Lupin smiled and nodded, pulling Harry just a little closer and glancing down contentedly at the messy head of dark hair pressed against his chest. Noticing the state they were in, though, Lupin became slightly more flustered, and murmured a quick scourgify before looking back up and Harry's closest friends.

While Hermione obviously knew what was going on, Ron, just as clearly, didn't.

"You-- with Harry-- but-- What?!" Ron spluttered as his face turned a brilliant shade of red that clashed horribly with his hair. Lupin stared at him, assessing. Yes, he looked flustered and angry (and quite a bit embarrassed). And he would probably be upset about the fact that what had seemed to be a budding relationship between his sister and his best friend would never work... which was going to be hurting his sister (Remus's arm tightened around Harry just a little more at the thought-- he didn't particularly want to let that girl near Harry ever again).

But the friendship between Harry and Ron had been tested before. And if Ron did something stupid and wound up hurting his Harry (Remus smiled to himself, he liked the sound of that), then Remus would just have to knock some sense into him and ensure Harry was hurt as little as possible.

Lupin really didn't want to have to explain it to Ron, so he turned to Hermione again.

"Would you...?"

Hermione nodded curtly, grabbing Ron's arm for the second time that day and once more dragging him (still sputtering and clearly bewildered) out of the room.

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Harry was now seated again in his (now uprighted) chair, glaring moodily across the table at Remus over his tea cup.

Remus was now seated in a chair of his own, and calm-as-you-please quite clearly simply staring at Harry, a pleased smile on his face.

The two stayed like this for a length of time, before Harry finally pulled his thoughts together and broke the silence.

"... How dare you." Harry murmured darkly, glaring at his tea. "You show up here, ramble about wanting to come with us, don't care about leaving Tonks and apparently your unborn child--" Remus winced slightly, but Harry ploughed on uncaring. "then announce to me that I'm apparently your mate for life and then practically jump me!" Harry's knuckles were now turning white as he clenched his cup too hard. "And you," Harry laughed darkly, "are supposed to be the reasonable one!"

Remus stayed where he was and listened. He knew his mate-to-be well enough to know that if he interrupted now he would just invoke more anger, and Harry's temper was not something to be laughed at.

"I can't believe this. I mean, it sort of sucks enough as it is to hear that this is just something else that I get no say in. It was always something of a reassurance to know that if I were to ever survive this whole stupid mess, at least I could finally start deciding what I cared to do with my life. Find some place to hide from the wizarding world and the press, and start my own life. But no, apparently I'm already 'engaged'." Harry huffed.

"And not only am I committed, I'm committed to a man my Father's age! And apparently that's no big deal to werewolves, but this's sure news to me. Forgive me if I seem a little unfamiliar with the idea." Harry griped, sarcastically.

"In fact, for that matter, I'm committed to a man! Until today, so far as I knew, I was... well, straight. I mean, the only people I've really held any interest in where Cho and Ginny," Harry ignored the seemingly random growl from Lupin. "and they are, quite obviously, not male. But supposedly, my 'perfect match' is quite clearly a man."

Harry paused, a slight grin coming to his face-- "Does that just mean you're really girly?"

Lupin rolled his eyes. "Hardly, though your Godfather might have told you otherwise." Harry snorted. "Perhaps they're both just manly." Lupin teased back.

Harry rolled his eyes this time.

"Anyway, and this one's obvious: then there's Tonks. I can't believe you-- you know how much I..." Harry choked slightly, and took a breath to calm himself.

"It-- well, it sucks to not have my parents. To have never really known them. And you're just going to up and abandon this kid because there's some mad instinct telling you I'm a better alternative?" Harry suddenly looked saddened, and sat back down in his chair wearily. "I just... Remus, this is nothing like you. And I can't say I know you as well as the Marauders, or anything-- but I know this..." Harry gestured between Lupin and himself, "is nothing like you." Harry picked up his tea again, staring into it sadly like it could give him all the answers.

Lupin watched Harry for a few moments more, and then leaned forward.

"Harry," Harry didn't look up.

"Tonks and I have already spoken about this-- at length. Tonks comes from a family with pureblood background, as you're well aware..." Harry nodded, though he still didn't look up. "So she's pretty familiar with wizarding law and traditions. And while this is slightly less common, she's still quite aware of the nature and laws surrounding werewolves."

Harry glanced up briefly, looking genuinely curious. "Did... well, did Tonks know about the whole 'compliment' thing? Err, or rather, was she aware that you thought... she wasn't it?" Harry looked guiltily down at his tea again.

"Yes, Harry; she was perfectly aware. I had made it quite clear before anything of any nature started with her. She knew there was a risk, and she still doesn't mind. In fact..." Harry looked up in time to see Lupin actually blushing slightly, "she'd like us... Well, she's asked if we could both sort of become... surrogate fathers." Harry stared, bewildered.

"I mean, she'd still raise this child, and the child would know her as it's mother," Lupin rushed to add. "but we wouldn't hide the nature of our relationship from the child, because neither of us want any awkward explaining moments when the child gets older." Lupin paused to take a breath.

"And Tonks finds no fault in you, Harry. She knows that you haven't chosen any of this, and she's mentioned she wanted me to inform you she still quite likes you and, apparently, 'thinks we make an adorable couple'." Lupin smiled. Tonks really was an amazing woman, he'd give her that.

Harry stared at Lupin, stunned. "So-- she's... just fine with this? This is just... ok with her?"

Lupin nodded. "In fact, she declared that the only thing she would take offence at is if we decide we want no part in that child's life. She was quite excited about the prospect of the child having an extra parent..." Lupin took a risk and moved around the table to kneel in front of Harry, looking him in the eye and resting a hand on Harry's shoulder. Harry didn't shrug it off, which Lupin took as a good sign.

"I think, partially, because she understands a little of what life's been like for you, without your parents. She knew you would never agree to having a child estranged from it's parents on your account, even if the child still had one of it's parents around. And while we cannot make up for it by giving you your parents back, we have agreed we can try to give you an entirely new family." Harry sat shocked.

Harry didn't care that he was only seventeen, what did that matter? He-- he could have a family? Though, an uncomfortable thought occurred shortly after...

"Erm, does that mean you and Tonks plan on having more kids then?" Harry said with a slight wince.

Lupin laughed, "Oh, goodness no. Harry, just because werewolves don't care about age difference doesn't mean we're into polygamy. There's a reason we have one compliment that is best suited to us in the world, you see." Lupin spoke with a reassuring smile.

"And I've told Tonks she's free to have another relationship if she cares to, though she's decided for the moment that the only thing she cares about is working on our household-to-be. The child is her first priority, and making sure neither of us do something stupid apparently follows right after." Lupin laughed, and Harry couldn't resist smiling.

Harry knew he shouldn't be feeling this inexplicably warm feeling, because this was practically his surrogate father... particularly since Sirius' death. And the thought of what had happened earlier still instantly brought a flush to his face-- what had he been thinking?

He knew for sure: if anyone had told him a few days ago that Lupin of all people would be doing... that to him (he again fought down the rising blush) any time soon he would have thought them completely mad.

But Lupin certainly had something right; there was some kind of... connection, that had shown up. Harry couldn't explain it, but he knew it was there... Or maybe it had always been? Maybe that was why he'd found it so easy to trust this older man, even in his third year (which now seemed like a distant memory, what with his battle with the Dark Lord looming in his future).

It was like-- this undefinable, overwhelming sense of absolute rightness was stealing over his whole body and blanketing him in comfortable happiness. Yes, there were lingering concerns about the Order and his friends, as well as the fate of the rest of the world... but for just one wonderfully selfish moment, none of that mattered.

And it was a blissful feeling, Harry thought with a dreamy smile.

Harry was dimly aware Lupin was now saying something, but damn if Harry could figure out what it was. Harry didn't really mind, he was enjoying just watching Lupin speak.

Harry shrugged inwardly; maybe he should show Lupin just how much? And with a sneaky smile, Harry leaned forward slightly and placed his lips on Lupin's. Lupin's speech was halted mid-sentence, leaving Lupin staring (looking both confused and filled with not just a little longing) at Harry, confused. And then Harry moved his lips slightly, and Lupin was growling and pressing back, aggressively...

And then Harry smiled, pulled away softly, and then promptly curled himself up in Lupin's lap on the floor without a word.

Lupin stared down at the head of messy black hair now tucked into his neck, bewildered. He'd been trying to speak with Harry about what exactly was going to be said about this to his friends, and what to do with Harry's 'freedom of future' issue, but apparently Harry wasn't paying as much attention as he thought he'd been.

'Oh well,' Lupin thought to himself with a smile; and then wrapped his arms around the warm body now seated comfortably in his lap.

Yes, there was still a big bad world out there to face-- as well as a totally evil, mad and dangerous Dark Lord. And Harry would probably snap out of this happy and relaxed state eventually, and of course there was still loads to be talked about. And Lupin was quite sure that he and Harry would have to get quite a bit more acquainted in many ways yet (and not all good ones, Lupin thought ruefully). But at least for once, something was going totally right... And Lupin knew that regardless of what happened, life was just a little more worth facing.

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Elucidation : End

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Right! Well, there's that. Hope you all liked it, it's my first go at anything limey/lemonish. Argh, I was blushing so hard, haha. Hope I didn't go too far, I don't want anyone mad at me. x.x

Anyway, enough of me; this is intended to be a short, sweet one-shot, though I -may- extend to a two-shot it if the mood hits me (I was thinking possibly skimming the rest of Deathly Hallows with a Lupin/Harry twist to it; like what all would be different about the Horcrux searching and such... and of course, adding a different epilogue. x.x).

So anyway, please-- review! Even if this doesn't get extended, it still encourages me to write similar things, y'know? Haha. Right; and I'm open to criticism, though I much prefer the constructive kind. xP Thanks.

- Liz.