Chapter 13

The Moon Lily

The next morning Severus woke up and immediately went into Harry's room. The boy was nestled under his covers, but Severus could see he was awake from his less than steady breathing.

"Harry, child? Are you alright?" asked Severus. There was a muffled response that Severus could not decipher. "Pardon?"

"I don't want to talk about it." came a voice that was thick with tears. Severus quickly walked over to the bed and sat down on the edge of it.

"Is this about what Mister Weasley said yesterday?" asked Severus softly. Harry gave a small affirmative. "What he said means nothing. If you being injured and getting a new family to call your own makes him angry with you, than he never was your friend to begin with." Harry nodded. "Shall we get you dressed?" asked Severus as he carefully lifted Harry got him dressed in a plain tee-shirt and jean shorts, brushed his teeth and hair and planned for a big day of nothing. That is until his cell phone rang.

Severus walked over to the table on which his phone was resting. The husky, deep voice of Damen crackled through the receiver.

"Hey Severus! Just wanted to let you know that Gunnar and I are back from our hunting trip! You should come over so we can take chat. Gunnar will take Harry."

"Take Harry where?" Severus asked sharply.

"Jeez Severus, just to the park! Josephina says he's probably ready to start moving around again."

"Oh. Well tell him that if ANYTHING happens to Harry I will personally hunt him down and kill him! Got it?"

"Okay, okay! I'll let him know!"

"Good." Severus hung up and went to make sure Harry was ready to go to the park. Harry was curled up in his bed again. When he heard Severus approaching he stretched painfully and looked up at his father curiously.

"Who was on the phone?" asked Harry.

"Damen. He and Gunnar are back from their trip. I'm going over to their house now. Gunnar's going to come over soon and take you to the park. Does that sound okay?"

"Yeah! But… why can't you take me instead?" Harry asked a bit sadly.

"I need to talk to Damen about some important Pack stuff. Sorry, Harry. I'll take you next time." Harry perked up a bit at the thought. Severus aided Harry with his shoes and before long there was a knock on the door.

Severus carried Harry to the door. There stood Gunnar, with Josephina and Anneliese behind him. Gunnar looked slightly put off that he had to babysit.

"Did Damen deliver my message?" Severus asked, not bothering to say hello.

"Yes. I promise not to let any harm come to your son." Gunnar said, with a slight hint of sarcasm. Severus gave Josephina a look that said clearly, What the hell? Josephina smiled grimly. She and Anneliese were looking particularly sullen today. Severus decided to ask her about it later.

Severus gave Gunnar the glare of death before gently transferring Harry into Gunnar's well-muscled arms. Gunnar bared his weight without a thought. Harry looked nervously into the black eyes of his father. Severus ceased his glare of death and looked reassuringly back into Harry's green ones. Harry seemed to calm down. Gunnar slouched off in the direction of the nearby park. Severus gazed worriedly at their retreating backs.

"They'll be fine." said Josephina, upon seeing his look, "Gunnar may not be the "child-type", but he'd die before he let harm come to any of his Packmates, even if it is a youngling." Severus nodded and followed Josephina and Anneliese back to their manor. Damen was waiting on the front porch. He ushered Severus over while the girls went inside. Severus sat down on the porch swing beside Damen.

"Well, Severus," said the taller man "Ask away. I wanted to answer any and all questions you have on Pack life, ranks, any of that." Severus thought for a moment.

"What is the history of Theriens?"

"Well, Therianthropy began with the wizards. A man called Lucas Renier discovered a potion that would make a wolf angry enough to bite and gave it a poison to be able to change a man into a hybrid. The wolf bit him and hung on until the man shifted became half-man, half-wolf. He acquired the abilities of a full wolf: advanced hearing, sight, smell, and strength. He was able shift between wolf and man at will. This was the creation of Therianthropy. And while he was blessed with a form of immortality, this gift came with a curse. He became extremely intolerant of silver and a rare plant called Wolfsbane. Over the years, Therianthropes developed even further, so that we are able to withstand silver. Wolfsbane, however, we cannot find a cure for."

"What beliefs do you hold?"

"We believe that the stars are our ancestors. They are the fallen warriors that preceded us, and they watch over us in times of our greatest need. The moon was the first Wolf, and we hold her sacred. That's why every wolf howls at the moon, even if he does not know why. In is ingrained into his very being. Wait until your first full moon as a Therian. We go on a hunt that is the most exhilarating experience you will ever go through."

Severus smiled at the thought. "I can't wait." he said. "So when exactly will I, you know, be bitten?"

"Josephina's the Alpha. She decides when you're ready."

"What about Gunnar? He has some say, right?"

"Ah. Gunnar. We'll talk about him later. Let's just say that right now Jo is pretty much running the Pack."

"Please, go on. I'd like to hear about Gunnar now." said Severus obstinately.

Damen sighed amusedly. "You'll make a good wolf. You don't give up easy. Now, Gunnar, where do I begin? I'm not going to give you his personal history, that is not my place. If he so chooses, he will tell you. Gunnar is not equipped to run the Pack. Josephina's a true Alpha by nature and right. Gunnar, however, is built to be second-in-command. He's a Beta through and through, even if he won't admit it, not even to himself. Because of his sense of superiority, he's running Jo into the ground. Our Pack is crumbling without sufficient leadership. Josephina's trying, but she needs a mate. She can't lead alone. Today especially is difficult for her. I'll let her tell you though. Once again, it's not my place. Does that explain your questions about Gunnar?"

"Why does he keep forcing himself on Jo? I mean Josephina? I mean, if she doesn't like him and they can never mate, than why doesn't she just break up with him? Why doesn't she find someone else…?" asked Severus with particular interest. Damen smiled.

"With who? At this point, Gunnar is her only option." Severus looked down. Inwardly, he was wishing with all his heart that he could be an option.

"Okay. So explain the ranks to me." Severus said, trying to change the subject to me. Damen burst into a detailed description of all the different ranks. Severus half-listened, but his mind refused to linger away from Josephina for very long.

Once, Damen mentioned a certain plant. Severus immediately perked up out of his daydream. "What's that?" he asked. "It sounds familiar but… I can't put my finger on it."

"Ah, the Moon Lily. It is the symbol of utmost love among Therians. It is extremely rare, and often can only be found surrounded by Wolfsbane. It is known for its potent healing abilities and can only be harvested under the darkness of the Blue Moon directly after a full moon."

"I see." said Severus. His mind was already bursting with scenarios in which he presented one of the rare flowers to his love, Josephina. At that, Severus thanked Damen for his time and went to go find Josephina.

Hello my wonderful readers! This chapter is thanks to my dear sister Blonds Will Rule the World. If you have not yet read her amazing stories, you're missing out!

~Nara and Davina