bFic-For-All entry: Willow Rosenberg/Remus Lupin (Harry Potter)


Willow watched the man from the trees as he crossed the cemetery, his feet crunching in the ankle deep snow. A soft wind blew his scent towards her, and she immediately knew he was a werewolf. After dating one werewolf, only to loose him to another and then submerging herself in dark magic, she could sense werewolves and other dark creatures with ease. She glanced upwards at the clear sky, the stars twinkling brightly at her, along with the shining moon, a week away from being full. Willow glanced back at the man, who stood at a pair of graves; two bunches of flowers held in his grasp tightly. He placed one down on each grave, before huddling into his coat with a shiver. Willow shifted, wincing when a twig beneath her foot snapped. The man looked up, reaching into his pocket, possibly going for a weapon of some kind.

"Who's there, show yourself." The man called. Willow sighed, and stepped out from the trees. She knew that the village was a magical settlement; she could feel it in her blood, which was practically dancing in her veins, and that the man, along with being a werewolf, was a wizard as well. Still, he appeared to relax as he saw her.

"I'm sorry to disturb you." Willow apologised, you just seemed to sad."

The man turned back to the graves, and Willow took it as a sign that she could approach more closely.

"My best friend and his wife. They've been gone for such a long time, and I still can't believe that I'm never going to see him smile again, that I'm never going to hear her voice again." the man spoke. Willow drew level with him, reading the names and details upon the headstones.

"I'm sorry," she said, thinking of Tara's recent, tragic death.

"They used to hate one another, or rather, she always used to hate him, he was devoted to her from the first moment on the train to Hogwarts."

Willow face must have shown her puzzlement, because the older man frowned.

'You know…Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry? You must be a witch, because you're in this town. Godric's Hollow is a witches and wizards only community."

"Oh, I've never heard of Hogwarts, but then, I'm American, so that probably explains it then." Willow said, with a small smile on her face. The man nodded.

'Remus Lupin," he said, offering her his hand to shake. Willow let her smile deepen.

"Willow Rosenberg." She took it, shaking his hand.

"You seem sad too, Willow, if you don't mind me saying."

"Yes, being in a cemetery like this, it just reminds me of home…and of recent losses."

"I'm sorry," Remus said sincerely, and Willow nodded.

"Thank-you. She was too young, had so much to live for. She didn't deserve what she got."

"What happened?"

"She got hit by a stray bullet. He was aiming for one of our friends, and a bullet came through the window, and got her instead." Willow sobbed. Remus paused, before putting a comforting arm around her shoulder.

"Nobody wants these kinds of things to happen to their friends and family, but they do, and the ones that are left have to fight their way through, try and focus on the positives. For example, are you familiar with my friends' names or the name Harry Potter?"

Willow reread the names James and Lily Potter on the headstones and shook her head. Remus' eyes widened in surprise, but he said nothing of it.

"Well, my friends had a son, and he looks so much his father, but at the same time he has inherited his mother's caring nature. Every time I see him I can see them both so clearly in him, and I know they will live on forever in him, and in my heart, and in the hearts of those who knew them."

"That's a good principle to live by, you're lucky that your friend's son is such a good monument to their memory."

"They were there for me at a time when few others would dare to go anywhere near me. They were the ones that showed me that what I am didn't define who I am. They taught me that there are people out their that can care about…that can love, a creature like me."

"a werewolf? Willow softly asked. Remus' head whipped around.

"How did you know?" he asked. Willow smiled.

'I could sense it. I kind of…used a lot of dark magic recently, and it's left me very open to non humans, or, well, you know." Willow faded off.

"Knowing when theirs something not quite right about someone. I'm surprised you had the courage to approach me, knowing what you do."

Willow shook her head, "It's a week until the full moon, and I'm used to werewolves. I don't have a problem with them. I dated one for almost two years a few years back. As I told him, I'm not so fun to be around for two or three days out of every month too. I used to sit with him during the transformations and read to him."

Remus coughed, choking on the cool night air, "I've never heard it put that way before."

"Is there anyone in your life that would sit and read to you?"

Remus had a sudden mental picture of himself in wolf form, having safely drunk the wolfsbane potion, curled up with Tonks on the couch at Grimmaud place, while she read to him, her hand resting on top of his head, scratching in between his ears.

"It's too dangerous." He said, shaking his head. Willow shook her head to, only sadly.

"No, it doesn't need to be. Oz, my boyfriend and I, had an arrangement. There was a cage in our high school library and he had a little nest cave thing up one end, and every full moon he would lock himself in their, and I'd have a book and a tranquiliser gun, and sit on a table, and read to him all night. Sometimes I'd pull shifts with a couple of our friends, so I could have a sleep, but most of the time it was just the two of us all night."

"No wolfsbane potion?" Remus' jaw dropped. Willow shook her head.

"What's that?"

"It gives the human control over the wolf. Tastes vile, but it stops the werewolf from risking going out and biting someone."

"We didn't have any of that." Willow said, wondering if maybe Oz would have been able to cope better with his inner wolf if he'd had the chance. Oh well, Giles and the coven was always telling her to focus on the present and the future, and to learn from the past, before moving on, and not focusing on what might have happened.

"You're a brave person." Remus said to Willow, who shrugged.

"Anyway, is there someone in your life who might want to read to you?"

Remus hesitated, before nodding, "Yes, she wants to be with me, but I lnow I'm going to hurt her. Besides, I am far to old for her. She's almost young enough to be my daughter. I was already fifteen years old when she was born.

Willow snorted at that, "I'm sorry," she said, "but let me tell you about two of my friends. She was sixteen when she met her boyfriend. He was two hundred and seventy something. My other friend, he was eighteen when he met his girlfriend, who he was engaged to. She's almost two thousand years old, and you think that fifteen is a big age difference?"

Remus choked at that. "And your friends were...?" he asked. Willow smiled a small smile to herself.

"My friends are both human," she replied, "But my first friend's boy friend; he was a vampire with a soul. My other friend, his girlfriend was an ex vengeance demon."

Remus coughed, "That must have made life interesting."

"It was." Willow nodded, "So maybe you should have a bit more o a think about what you said about being too old, because if she cares about you as much as she seems to, she doesn't care about your age, or the wolf. She cares about the man…the person that you are.".

Remus looked at his watch, cursing inwardly; he had an order meeting to get to. Maybe, just maybe, he could talk to Tonks. Maybe they could go and get a coffee after the meeting, or do something together.

"Maybe I will. Thank you for your advice, Willow. I appreciate it."

"No problem." Willow smiled, watching as Remus turned his back on her and hurried off into the darkness. Willow let out a soft sigh.

"I hope he stays safe, that some happiness comes his way. No-one should deserve to be alone like that." She turned and faced the pair of tombstones; with he bunches of flowers resting on the snow.

"Well, except perhaps me," she said with a shrug, holding out her hands and opening herself up to the soft, gentle, white magic that the coven had been teaching her to harness and draw into herself. She whispered a soft enchantment under her breath, her eyes closed, until she had finished whispering. She opened her eyes, finding two flowers in her hands. They were soft and beautiful, and Willow reverently placed one before each of the graves on the ground.

"I hope you can rest peacefully. Your friends and family will hold you forever in your hearts. Hopefully, Remus will find happiness." She said, "he has earned it. I've done what I can; the rest is up to him. Farewell, James and Lily Potter." Willow inclined her head respectfully, before she turned on her heel and strode through the bushes. She needed to get back to Giles and the coven before her absence was noticed, but as she walked, Willow noticed with a smile how her heart seemed a little lighter after helping Remus. Maybe the good deed had helped her as much as it had helped him. Willow cast her eyes upwards, towards the starry heavens.

'I'll hold you in my heart forever, Tara," she called out, before continuing through the woods towards the covens home. A warm breeze blew, despite the coldness, and Willow was sure that she heard Tara's voice in it.

i"I'm proud of you, Willow,"/i it said. Willow smiled, inhaling and smelling Tara's unique scent in the air. In that moment, Willow was certain that she'd begun her redemption. She had a long way to go, but the first steps were always the hardest.

bA.N. I was taken on a whim, to write a ffa, and I picked out this paring. It turned out better than I expected. Review to tell me what you think.