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Chapter Eleven

Heart of a Dragon



Felicity had left Grimmauld Place in the early morning hours. She’d only gotten a little sleep, having talked with Sirius and Remus for most of the evening. While Severus slept in his healing sleep above them, the two marauders had painted a picture of their past, their friendship and their loyalty to each other. It was heart wrenching to hear of the loss of their great friends. So many had died in the first war with Voldermort. Her heart hardened still further toward the monster as they related the story of poor little Harry, the boy-that-lived whose parents had been betrayed by their own friend. She had heard some of the story before but hearing the whole truth of it from them broke her heart.

She softened toward Sirius. His soul was so damaged by the betrayal of Peter Pettigrew and the loss of his friends. His years in Azkaban were unbelievable. It was amazing the man was even sane.

When their evening of talk had ended and she rose to go, she found it hard to leave the two marauders. They were the only ones left standing in a world full of dead friends. It was tragic. She kissed Sirius good-bye, hugging him as if she’d known him all her life. She was so moved by his story.

Remus walked with her the two blocks she needed to walk before apparating to the gates of Hogwarts. The streets ofLondon were largely quiet and a misty rain fell making the streets shine under the still dark sky.

“I’ll not be here when you return tomorrow night to take care of Snape,” said Remus, stopping and holding her close to him. He kissed forehead. “I have the watch at the Malfoy’s.” He caressed her back and leaned over her kissing her cheek. “I’m so glad you’ve found me, my dear,” he whispered. He moved his face along her skin until he found her lips. She felt a surge of desire in his kiss. The taste of him seemed endless.

She had never before known someone so hard to leave and they stood longer than they should have in the street for two people who were supposed to be inconspicuous. “Wake me when you get in,” she said breathless. “Severus will be needing care for a few more days.” She walked backwards from him still holding his hand, dropping it reluctantly to apparate to the gates of Hogwarts.


*********



She was exhausted. She had faced Voldemort, performed blood magic and stayed up through the night. When in her rooms, she transformed into her dragon self and crawled into bed for the few more hours of sleep she would be allowed. She sat at the teacher’s table later that morning numbly trying to pound down cups of coffee to wake up.

She never even noticed the pink bully sneak up on her from behind.

“Professor Wood,” said Dolores Umbridge sitting down beside her. “We missed you at dinner last evening.” Her bulbous eyes widened and the placid smile she always wore looked evil. “I went to your rooms and you weren’t there.”

“I had a family emergency,” Felicity lied. “I don’t know if you know it, Dolores, but my father is an ambassador in the Ministry and he asked be to do something in London for him.” She smiled sweetly as Dolores wrote on her clipboard.

“What’s his name?” she asked, her quill poised to write the offending father’s name.

“Roland Wood.”

Dolores hadn’t seen that coming. “Roland Wood is YOUR father?” Felicity’s dad was a very powerful man in the Ministry. Even Cornelius Fudge consulted with him for political advice.

The Madame Inquisitor looked suspiciously at her for a few moments. “Well, then you should be well aware of the
ramifications, Miss Wood of your fraternizing with a known werewolf!”

Felicity looked at her blankly. “I beg your pardon?” she asked incredulously.

“You are seeing, socially, that is, a known werewolf!” said Dolores with triumph.

“Remus Lupin is a werewolf.” She said the word with such loathing and hatred that Felicity was very tempted to drop her veneer of innocence and use an unforgivable on the woman. She could use the Tibetan killing curse that would surely mean a slow and cruel death that the Ministry could never trace. She considered these options as she wore a surprised look on her face.

“Why I never imagined,” she said slowly as if it were the first she’d heard it. “That’s bad isn’t it? I mean that’s why you’re telling me that Remus Lupin is a werewolf, because it’s considered bad, correct?” She looked at the woman with as blank a face as she could muster.

“He’s NOT human, Professor Wood,” said Dolores viciously. “They should lock up all the half-breeds in Azkaban!!!”

The woman really seemed to have an ax to grind when it came to mixes of blood. Felicity wondered what would happen if she changed into her dragon self, picked up the pink toad and dropped her off the nearest cliff.

“Gracious me,” said Felicity sweetly. “And to think that I was going to meet him in Hogsmeade on Saturday. Good thing that I had to cancel to go into London for my father this weekend.”

She smiled at the apple-faced amphibian.

“Thank you, so much for letting me know. Though, truly Ms. Umbridge, it’s very strange that you even KNEW about my meeting with Mr. Lupin. If I didn’t know it was against the rules, I would suspect that you’d read my private mail.”

She got up to leave without another word to begin her first class.


Felicity thought she would go numb by her last class of the day. It was exceedingly boring having to teach the Ancient Runes in the standard ‘Ministry Approved’ version.

“I’d like two lengths of parchment discussing the ramifications of the Norse Elder Futhark’s developments in dialect and magic content with special attention placed on the runes Wunjoand Hegall. I will mark down… Mr. Nott, are listening?”

The Slytherin troublemaker was giggling with a Ravenclaw, who frankly should have been placed in Hufflepuff for all the attention that she paid in class. “Yes, Professor Wood?”

“I want it clear to you especially, Mr. Nott after your last very mediocre attempt at Skuld and Freyja that I will mark down for long passages of descriptions that are not referenced. I want research from you this time, Mr. Nott.

“Yes, m’am,” he said grudgingly.

She stood glaring at him. For a young man from her house he was certainly an irritant. “Class dismissed,” she said not taking her eyes off him.

Hermione Granger came up to her as the class was shuffling out the door moaning about the amount of work that they’ been given over a weekend. She smiled sweetly at the girl. “Hermione, dear,” she said, “how are you?”

“I’m fine, thanks,” said Hermione hesitantly. “I was wondering, Professor Wood if you could give me a little extra reading in the magic languages that you introduced at the beginning of term?” Hermione chewed on her lip hoping she hadn’t offended her Professor.

“You poor dear,” said Felicity sympathetically. “It’s tedious and boring isn’t it? I can hardly keep my eyes open to teach the stuff and nonsense that I’m sure you know by heart already.” She put her arm around Hermione’s shoulder.

“Walk with me to the dungeons, dear. Why don’t you help me gather some things for my trip to London tonight? We’ll talk about what to do to fill that lovely mind of yours.” She guided Hermione out the door.

“It’s just that it seemed so interesting, Professor,” said Hermione apologetically. “I was stunned when Crookshanks came that first day of class.”

“I know, I know,” said Felicity as they walked down the stair toward her quarters. “I assure you, my dear that I’m a much better teacher than they’ve allowed me to be.” She opened the door to her rooms by flourishing a design in green light on the door. Hermione stood transfixed.

“What was that, Professor?” she asked as they walked into the room. “That symbol you used to open the door.” Felicity closed the door behind them. She gazed at Hermione gauging how much she should say. It was so unfair to keep knowledge from such a mind. “Hermione, my dear, you are a very smart young witch,” she said frankly. “There are those in this school that spend their time spying on others instead of teaching the young minds that they are meant to teach. I lock my doors with my own design of spells to keep out prying eyes.” She winked at her. “You are well read and you seem to understand everything put before you. Keep your mind and heart open, my dear, to the magic in the world. What you learn at this school will not be the only power that it is possible to learn. Seek out the different and discover your strengths.” She wanted to laugh at the look of joy on Hermione’s face. She loved learning, this one. Hermione would be a very strong witch someday. “My personal library is along that wall.” She pointed to a wall of over a thousand volumes. “Take most anything you wish, but make sure that you hide them from meddlesome eyes and I must insist that you return them before end of term.”

“Thank you, professor,” said Hermione enthusiastically rushing to look at the books.

Felicity took out her carpetbag and with her wand started packing for her trip. She packed the urn for Severus’ potion and several bags and vials of ingredients. She rustled through her robes and drew out a special kimono of the finest green and turquoise silk and slipped it on.

Hermione let out a small gasp from the far corner of the room. “What?” asked Felicity turning around, “Do you think this robe is too much for town?” But Hermione wasn’t looking at Felicity. She was looking at her books on changing human forms into beasts. “Those are probably not the best ones for you, Hermione dear. I’m not sure Headmaster Dumbledore would approve of your reading those.”

But Hermione wasn’t listening. She was reading off the titles. Dragons in Dragon land: the world of the Dragon people of Tibet by Alistair Motley; Blood of Dragons and other Simpler Spells for Modern Use by Helmut Shrewsbury; The Twelve Uses of Dragon’s Blood by Albus Dumbledore. “Your collection on dragon’s blood magic and animagus’ is amazing, Professor,” she said admiringly.

“Yes, but let’s keep it our little secret, my dear,” she said. She grabbed her texts on Ancient Sanskrit and Cuneiform magic and handed them to her. “Start small and build up. I must be off, Hermione.” She grabbed her bag and hustled the young woman toward the door. “I’ve a date with a werewolf this evening.” She laughed at Hermione’s shocked expression as she ushered the girl out the door. If she hurried she might be able to avoid any run-ins with the pink cow before she left the grounds.


*********



When Felicity peeked through the door at Grimmauld Place, the house was quiet as a tomb. She called out for Sirius, whom she knew was not allowed to leave the house but he was nowhere to be seen. She stepped up the stairs to where she’d left Severus asleep in bed. He had not moved. He laid still, his long raptor nose pointed to the ceiling, his eyes closed. She stood over him. When he found out how she had saved his life she was absolutely sure that he would strangle her.

She set to work making the potion again. When it was done, she again formed the blue sparks on his forehead to stimulate his brain, pressed her thumbs into his eyes and snapped her fingers.

“Severus, Severus,” she said smiling into his eyes wide open. “Wake up, dear. It’s time to drink your potion again.”

He looked at her uncomprehendingly for a few seconds and then recognized her face. “Felicity,” he said in a harsh whisper. “I had the most wonderful dream of you.” He smiled. She’d never seen him really smile. He wasn’t bad looking when he wasn’t frowning and glaring. “You were a dragon, Felicity. A beautiful green and gold dragon and I rode into the sky on your back.” He laughed at the absurdity. “Can you imagine it? It was quite exhilarating.”

She put the potion up to his lips. “I promise that if you promise me to live, my dear Severus,” she told him. “I will take you into the sky and give you the ride of your life.” He smiled at her and drank the potion happily letting the euphoria fill him up again. He fell again into a deep sleep. She stroked his cheek and sighed. When he was finally asleep, she kissed his forehead.

“That was a pretty picture,” said Sirius harshly from the door. “Burning the candle at both ends, are we, Felicity?”

His tone was self-righteous and bitter.

She sighed. She put a cover over Severus who was dreaming happily. “You judge him so harshly, Sirius and for what?”

She looked at him imploringly. “He had a miserable childhood and so did you. You have more in common with each other than either of you will ever admit.” She smiled at his hardened face as she walked to him. “Come on, black dog,” she said. His expression was still wary of her. “Let’s have some chocolate and tell more stories of our lives so that you might understand me. I am not your enemy.” She held out her hand to him.

“Women like you just confuse me,” he said taking her hand, relenting.

“Don’t forget, Sirius,” she said kindly. “I’m not just a woman. I’m a dragon woman.”

“You’re still confusing as hell, dragon or not,” he said.

She laughed happily and he smiled. Felicity had magic laughter that was infectious and mood changing. “Believe me when I tell you, Sirius that I confuse a lot of people. Didn’t you know that dragons are seductive as well as strong? It’s a winning combination. I can drive men wild.” She mussed up his hair and put her arm through his as they walked out the door. She laughed at the look of seduced wonder on his face.


*********



Later that evening, Felicity checked on Snape to make sure his breathing was regular and he was calmly sleeping. She was so shattered by the last two days events and her lack of sleep that she crawled into bed next to him. He would never know. She curled up alongside him and put her hand on his heart to make sure it was still beating in his chest and drifted off into a deep sleep.

Remus came in at three o’clock in the morning. He stood at the door of the room watching Felicity sleeping in the bed next to Snape. She looked so young and vulnerable next to the severe potions professor. A jealous hatred reared its ugly head and for a few minutes Remus raged with the need to hurt someone. He got a hold of his anger quickly and was in fact, amazed that he was capable of such jealousy. He shook himself to calm down.

He sat down next to Felicity on the bed. She was coiled up with Snape, who was lying on his back snoring away.

Gently Remus reached for Felicity’s hand on Snape’s chest and held it toward him as he whispered to her. “Felicity,” he called to her. “Felicity, wake up.”

She turned to his voice, still sound asleep.

“Felicity,” he whispered into her ear, kissing it tenderly.

“Remus,” she said without opening her eyes. She was still dreaming.

He kissed her cheek, her chin, and her lips. “Felicity,” he said louder. “Wake up, darling.”

She opened her eyes and smiled. “Remus, I was just dreaming of you.”

To his delight she reached up sleepily to touch his face.

“Come with me, dear,” he said to her. He pulled on her arms softly trying to encourage her out of bed.

“But I’m so tired, Remus,” she moaned. “You come to me.” She reached up to him.

The absurd vision of the three of them in bed together was too much for Remus, however and he finally persuaded Felicity onto her feet. She was barely awake as he led her down the hall to his room and tenderly tucked her into his bed. She fell instantly back to sleep.

He undressed and climbed into bed with her. She cuddled up next to him, still sleeping and he kissed her lovely face as he held her in his arms. He stayed awake listening to her breathing for a long time. He formed as much of his body as he could next to her, touching her, caressing her, wildly happy to have her near him. This was certainly heaven he thought as he finally dropped off to sleep thinking only of his dragon woman.


*********



The next morning Sirius was up late. He wandered into an empty kitchen. Usually Remus was up before him but he’d had the Malfoy watch so he was bound to be sleeping late. Kreacher, the house elf crawled from his hole and bowed to him.

“Fix me some breakfast and I want some very strong coffee,” he said harshly to the little twerp.

Kreacher mumbled meanly under his breath but Sirius forbade him from saying another word so he wouldn’t have to listen his foul comments spoken under his breath. It had already inspired him to be in a bad mood having to see the elf’s face first thing in the morning.

He was finished with breakfast and on his second cup of coffee reading The Daily Prophet when Remus and Felicity came literally dancing together though the door. They waltzed around the room gaily and then Felicity sat down next to Sirius while Remus went to get them both coffees.

“Isn’t it a lovely day, Sirius?” said Felicity joyously. She kissed him on the cheek. He looked at her surprised.

“At it like bunnies again, have we been, you two?” he said disgusted but smiling. “Must I be subjected to all this romantic drivel whenever you’re around, Felicity?”

She laughed at him. “I’m sorry, Sirius. Blame Remus, he’s the one that persuaded me out of bed with Severus last night. I was asleep.”

“Until this morning, my dear,” said Remus bending over to kiss her on the neck.

“Gor!!!” protested Sirius. “Don’t torture me with this kissy love stuff.” He moved the paper in front of his face.

Remus punched it playfully and sat down next to Felicity. They could hardly keep their hands off each other.

Sirius was getting agitated and frankly more than a little jealous. “So how long will we be subjected to the corpse of Snivellus upstairs, Ms. Dragon Woman?” he asked spitefully wanting to throw a wedge between them. Felicity grimaced at him. “I’m giving him another potion this afternoon,” she said. “I want him out like a light
while Remus and I go to Diagon Alley tonight. When he wakes up and finds out what I’ve done to him, he’s going to throw a hissy fit.” She looked at their questioning faces. “You’ll have to protect me until I calm him down.”

Remus was concerned. “What are you talking about, Felicity? You saved the man’s life. He’ll be grateful, of course.”

“That’s not necessarily true,” said Sirius quietly. “There was the time that James saved his life and he never forgave him. He’s a revengeful bastard.”

Felicity looked to them to explain.

“Sirius tried to kill Snape when we were at school,” said Remus to her.

“I never thought the berk would actually go to the whomping willow.”

“I was in my werewolf state and this idiot thought it would be a fun prank to lure Snape to me. James stopped him and saved his life. Snape was pretty bitter about it. In fact, he still is. It’s one of the reasons, I think that he hates Harry so much.”

Felicity looked shocked at Sirius. “Well, I’m certainly glad that I never attended Hogwarts to witness you Marauders
in action, then,” she said disgusted. “No wonder he loathes you.” She shook her head. “He’s going to look at what I’ve done as far worse than that, I think, though.”

Remus and Sirius both looked surprised.

“I have the heart of a dragon,” she said sadly. “There’s a reason that blood magic is forbidden in most of the
wizarding world and is considered Dark Magic. By saving Severus’ life the way that I did, I’ve bound him to me.

Remus didn’t like the sound of that. “What do you mean bound him to you?” he asked with dread.

She couldn’t look into his eyes. She probably should have told him before they’d made love that morning. Sometimes
she just didn’t think things through far enough. Master Tong was always on at her about being careful with another’s
soul. The responsibilities of the dragon people were immense. “It’s what Voldemort does when he marks his Death
Eaters,” she said looking down at the table. “My blood magic is stronger than his. I have the heart of the dragon
and dragon’s blood has magic even beyond his power. It’s older than human magic. Severus can never be rid of me. We
are bound for life. He must come to me if I call to him. Whenever he is in pain I will know it. Whatever he does or
wherever he goes I will be able to find him. He is mine.” She looked hesitantly up to their horrified faces. “It’s
why Voldemort pretended to try to kill him but didn’t quite finish the job. That’s why I needed to tell Albus
Dumbledore. I’m sure that Voldemort knew that I would do the blood binding to save Severus and now he thinks that he
will eventually get at me through hurting him.” She tried to keep the tears from her eyes. “He wants me enslaved to
him because he thinks that with me I will kill you all.”

Sirius face went ashen. “Could you kill us all if he bends you to his will, Felicity?”

She nodded sadly. “There is nothing that you have seen like one of the dragon people at war,” she said miserably. “I would be a weapon. A dragon’s skin is almost invincible to killing spells when we are armored. We fight with magic fire. We are both dragon and wizard. Voldemort could kill me and certainly Dumbledore, but not many other wizards could.” She looked away to the fire in the hearth. “I will kill Severus and myself before I would ever let

Voldermort bind me to him, however.” She looked to Remus whose eyes met hers with love. “I will never be servant and
slave to Voldemort.”

It was many minutes before any of them spoke.


*********

Please take a minute to leave a review. Thanks, Pru Prior


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