AN: Hey y'all! I'm back with another story! It's AU as usual. I hope everyone enjoys it!
Harry Potter belongs to JK Rowling. The title Kiss From a Rose comes from a song that I do not own. Seal does.
"Let me see the moon," he hissed.
"You're still too weak," Scabior replied.
He hungrily scanned the ceiling of the tent for even the tiniest of pinholes that might admit a sliver of moonbeam. None was there. The faint glow of the sun illuminated the enchanted tarp during the daytime, but most nights all he could see was a dark blue shadow suspended overhead. Even the floor shielded him from the natural world. It was cement-not grass or blessed dirt but cold, hard, manufactured cement. There was nothing else in the enclosure save the cot on which he slept and the newspapers which lay scattered about the floor. The tent was allegedly the size of the Malfoys' living room, but after all this time it provided no more comfort than an Azkaban cell.
"I want to go outside," he insisted, his voice more sinister than before.
"But your wounds…"
He growled as he pushed Scabior aside and burst through the door. Savoring his newfound freedom, he breathed air thick with the smell of pine and tilted his head at a faint howl in the distance. He smirked as he stepped into a clearing between two trees to welcome the object of his desire.
Two clouds separated, exposing the full moon. He laughed giddily as his body slowly morphed into the hideous beast he had yearned to become. He howled his triumph and a warning to the rest of the world as Scabior looked on.
Fenrir Greyback was alive.
"She's dead, Lucius," Severus announced.
"Who's dead?" Lucius asked as he sat down in a faded red chair across from his friend.
"My grandmother," Severus answered. "Which I find fascinating because I wasn't even aware that she was still alive."
Lucius nodded. "I remember my father mentioning her once. I believe she lived in Germany…"
"To escape the war," Severus added. "At least that's what the messenger told me."
Lucius retrieved his tea cup and its saucer from their perch on the cherry wood table and took a sip. "Why did they tell you?" he asked as he removed the cup from his lips.
"Allegedly I'm in her will," Severus answered.
"Really?" Lucius asked with a raised eyebrow.
"But, I thought you said that she'd disowned your mother for marrying a muggle," Lucius continued.
"She did," Severus answered. "That only makes the recent turn of events all the more intriguing."
"Yes," Lucius answered before raising his tea cup again. "It certainly does."
He took another sip as Severus collected his thoughts. Finally, he answered, "The will reading is at noon tomorrow."
"I take it that you intend to go."
"Yes," Severus answered. "Do you know if I'll need an attorney?"
"You shouldn't," Lucius answered. "They should simply announce the distribution of her assets along with any comments or conditions contained in the document."
Severus nodded before taking another sip. "No doubt I'll be mentioned just once, and only then as an object of derision."
"No, you wouldn't have been invited to the reading if that were the case," Lucius answered. "She has given you something."
"I just wonder how many strings are attached to it," Severus answered before taking a final sip and setting his cup down.
"I wouldn't ask too many questions. I'd just accept it and make whatever use of it I could," Lucius answered.
"I suppose so," Severus replied.
"Worst case scenario, she bequeathed you some dreadful antique vase that will spend the rest of its days in your attic," Lucius answered.
Severus chuckled. "I suppose so."
Lucius took another sip. "I wouldn't think too much about it one way or the other."
"I suppose not," Severus conceded.
Lucius looked out the window at the darkening sky and then stood. "I should be going now. Narcissa wanted me home before nightfall."
Severus nodded. "Thanks again for coming."
"Any time. Let me know how things go," Lucius replied.
"I will," Severus promised.
The men shook hands before Lucius glided off into the dusk. Severus grimaced as he picked up the tea cups and set them in the kitchen, where they magically cleaned themselves. Casting a lumos spell, he sat down at the kitchen table, his chair creaking in protest. He spread out the paper and adjusted the lumos until he could see well enough to read.
Two pictures dominated the front page. One showed Ronald Weasley surrounded by adoring female fans, his arms encircling two, maybe three laughing females. In the other panel was a photo of Hermione Granger standing in a doorway. Her face was contorted in rage, but Severus could also detect a glimmer of tears. She slammed the door on the reporters, camera flashes ricocheting off its surface. Above the pictures, the headline read:
GOLDEN COUPLE BREAKS UP FOR GOOD!
Snape turned the page, hoping to find some real news.