Chapter 14

It's Not Over

Severus found Josephina in the training room. She had a large rapid-fire gun in hand and she was shooting vehemently at dummies, intent on her target. Severus watched her in silence, as she hit it perfectly every time. On one shot she was just shy of a clean heart puncture. With a vicious, lupine cry that would have frightened a bear, she repeatedly shot the dummy getting closer with each shot and increasingly frustrated with each one she missed. Finally, livid beyond words, Josephina brutally tossed the gun aside, pulled a sword out of her belt and ruthlessly began to disembowel her dummy. Severus could have sworn he saw a tear roll down her cheek. Severus cleared his throat. Before he could blink, he was against the wall at sword point.

"What the hell are you doing here?" asked Josephina, sounding more tired and sad than angry. She carefully moved the lethal blade away from Severus's neck and let it from her fingers on to the ground.

"You looked unhappy earlier, and I simply came to see if you were okay." Severus was glad that she had dropped that sword. Se

"I'm fine." said Josephina dully.

"Josephina, just tell me. I want to help, if possible." Severus said gently, but firmly. Josephina looked at Severus, her mistrust apparent. She seemed to weigh her options, before saying,

"This is the anniversary of my biological sister's death. Her name was Sophia." said Josephina softly "I left the house to try to find food, as our father was starving us. I heard her scream my name and ran back to the house. She was gone, but there was blood everywhere…up the walls, pooling on the floor. I suppose my father ridded the body before I could see." Severus, after a moment of hesitation laid an awkward hand on her shoulder. Josephina shrugged it off like it stung. She sighed and pulled her wand out of her pocket and conjured two chairs. She sat in one and motioned for Severus to do the same. He sat and moved his chair in front of her's.

"I suppose you two were close?" asked Severus, hesitantly, knowing he was skating on thin ice. Josephina gave a harsh little laugh.

"Yeah, you could say that." She conjured a long-necked bottle popped the lid and took a swig of it. Severus stared at her. He had always known Josephina to be very tasteful with alcohol. She looked strangely at him.

"What? It's just some soda my lieutenant, Isebeau made for me! You look like I was chugging rum! So, back to my sister. Yeah, she and I were polar opposites. Her hair was white-blonde, her eyes were like mine, but lighter and mine are bluer. We were both tall; she was slimmer than I am. Our father used to beat us and where I got harsh, she kept her gentleness. My father was…is a terrible man. He used to beat me with anything after my Shift, simply for the fact that I would not die. And I mean with anything. Morning stars, cat-o-nine-tails, knives, magic, his own teeth…it was terrible." Josephina chuckled darkly "I suppose I know where Harry's coming from, hey? Though I don't suppose the Dursleys ever got a hold of a morning star. Those scars are quite distinct. Anyhow, I learned something from all that. If and when my father hit me, I would spit my blood in his face. I was all pee and vinegar. Sophia, the exact opposite of me, would cower and allow it to happen. If it was daddy's will, so be it. We used to be close though, we were both very close to my mother, and I used to protect them both. One was the younger sibling, one was weak. I took beatings for them when I could; the both of them were so were so gentle. I was devastated when Sophia died. My mother was never the same…" Josephina's voice trailed off. Severus sensed that Sophia was not the only loss Josephina faced at a young age.

"I take it she passed on?" asked Severus softly. Josephina looked at him mournfully.

"My mother? No. No, no, she's still alive and with my father."

"Josephina, what was your surname?" Severus's tone was sharp, but tentative. What monster could beat his own young daughters and live?

"Greyback. Some bloodline I come from, eh?" Severus fought the urge to gasp. He had seen Fenrir Greyback enough to know what kind of man he was. He always knew Greyback had a wife, Akira, but daughters.

"I…" Severus was at a loss for words. Josephina looked at him blankly. Her normally vivacious blue eyes took a tone of insipidness. She was nothing. She was hurting, just like Damen said. And Severus could do nothing for her. Suddenly, a familiar burning sensation appeared around Severus's neck. It came from a chain around his neck; Voldemort was summoning him. Severus refused to take a Dark Mark, but he had to take this.

"Josephina, I must go. Lord Voldemort is summoning me." said Severus said standing. Josephina stood too, her eyes narrowed.

"You bear his mark?"

"No, I refused. But I took this necklace in its stead."

"Take it off. Never put it on again. Go, and report back to me immediately afterward. You're my man, not his. Mine." Josephina's voice was stern, sad, and uncertain all at once. Severus nodded, cast off the necklace and Apperated away.

Once Severus reached Malfoy Manner he walked through the gates and through the open doors (ajar to beat the heat). He found Voldemort, Gilderoy, Bellatrix, and Lucius standing together.

"Severus, my slippery friend," said Voldemort "Have you found Harry Potter?" Severus smirked grimly.

"What's left of him. His uncle and aunt nearly beat him to death. And Dumbledore bloody let it happen, of course. Harry has suffered much physical abuse, but mental abuse too. He cannot walk and may not ever be able to. I also adopted him as my own." Voldemort nodded.

"I called you to let you know that Dumbledore changed the Potters' will. A letter was sent to me as I am your official and financial advisor. There will be an official will reading tomorrow and you and Harry are expected to be there—"

"BUTTERFLY!" Gilderoy shrieked as 0the delicate insect flapped in the room through the door. "BUTTERFLY! BUTTERFLY! BUTTERFLY!" The ignorant man chased the insect outside and then went on to skip after it. Severus hefted a sigh.

"We'll be there," Severus said to Voldemort, ignoring the blond idiot who was now chasing the poor butterfly all over the Malfoys' luxurious estate. Voldemort sighed, then nodded his head at Severus, not even acknowledging the distraction.

"Where have you been Severus? You can't have taken care of the boy all by yourself." said Lucius, speaking up for the first time. Severus looked up at his friend.

"You remember Josephina Hopea-Wolfe, from school?" asked Severus. Lucius laughed.

"And her sister. I always was jealous of you. And I always wondered about what split you two up. I suppose she still is the looker she was?"

"Of course. But she went on to become a Healer, and she her sister, her boyfriend and her sister's boyfriend have been helping me with Harry." said Severus. Voldemort's eyes widened slightly.

"Surely not the Josephina Hopea-Wolfe, the famous Healer and alpha of the Nezeljen werewolf pack?" Voldemort seemed astounded. Severus nodded.

"The very same."

"Perhaps you can get her along with Harry on our side?" asked Voldemort.

"Perhaps, but I must be getting back to her." said Severus. Lucius smiled and Voldemort began to chuckle. "Whatever came over you?" asked Severus, irked as Bellatrix began to cackle.

"I don't think that her boyfriend will be happy for very much longer." the dark witch responded around her laughter. Severus said nothing and Floo'd to Hopea-Wolfe Manor. He needed to speak to Josephina about what had just ensued. How she would handle the news in her foul mood, Severus did not like to think.

Hello, lovely readers! *shrinks away from the flaming pitchforks that the readers throw* Sorry! Been very busy! Please oh, please review though! *leaves cookies*

Nara and Davina