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“Lupin!” Dermot spits, and I look up from my textbook.

“Yes, Sir?”

“I need you to go to Slughorn’s office, and bring back some of the potion he set aside for me. Mind you don't spill any of it! It's highly dangerous, and difficult to get hold of.”

“Yes, Sir,” I mutter. I stand up and leave the classroom, grateful that I get a few minutes away from him.

I vaguely amuse myself with the possibility that the potion Slughorn set aside might be for Dermot’s own drinking, but in reality I know that it is simply so he can give a long, boring talk on it.

It is nearly three weeks into the school year now, and I have slipped comfortably into the routine and lifestyle of Hogwarts, noting that Dermot treats me with such blatant hatred, that not even Grandma’s letters telling me “not to be silly” or Harry’s words of “don’t worry about it – you’re probably just blowing it out of proportion”, can possibly change my mind about him.

Yeah, whatever. Any excuse to take points from me, he’ll use it without a second thought. No one can deny that he doesn’t like me, and it has become a popular joke around my classmates:

“Oi, Lupin – Dermot’s got a voodoo doll of you in his office. I saw him sticking pins in it.”

“Are you still alive? After a double Defence lesson?”

“Are you going to get your godfather to sort him out?”

The subject of the famous Harry Potter seems to come up a lot. Groups of students will notice that I’m standing nearby, and talk very loudly about the latest rumour in the newspapers.

This rumour, which has reared its ugly head like an unwanted pimple, seems to consist mainly of how Harry is having a steamy affair with his secretary. Apart from the fact that Harry doesn’t even have a secretary, the whole thing is made even more ridiculous by the fact that she is claiming that Harry has bought her a villa in Spain, and is promising to divorce Ginny and marry her.

I tend to just laugh it off if anyone asks me directly, and ignore them if try to drop hints about it. Needless to say, Alfie and Jason find it absolutely hilarious, and keep asking whether I am actually a secret love child.

From his letters, I can see that Harry seems completely unbothered by the whole thing:

“It’ll all blow over soon enough – these silly things always do. Still, the sooner the better, because George's jokes really are steadily becoming more and more  annoying.”
On top of all that, just the fact that I am Harry Potter’s godson brings unwanted attention. The Gruesome Twosome lead most of the school in constantly pestering me with stupid questions, and begging me to tell exciting accounts of my life with him.

“Really, it’s not that big a deal,” I always say. “Honestly – he’s just like any other guy. He’s like a big brother, or an uncle.”

My grandmother too, generates a bit of interest, as I let slip at breakfast one morning that she was in Slytherin. This caused a lot of juicy gossip – Harry Potter’s godson was related to Slytherins! The scandal!

I find it all rather funny actually – Alfie and Jason both know I’m decent, and that’s all I really need to know.

After managing to slip away from Slughorn (who has been badgering me to join the Slug Club since my first potions lesson), I make my way back up to Defence Against the Dark Arts. As I approach the classroom, however, I see Dermot, casually leaning against the doorway, a stern, serious expression on his face.

“Where did you go?” he asks coldly.

“Potions – I got that poison-”

“I did not tell you to leave the classroom, Lupin.”

“You did, Sir-”

“Do not interrupt me. Ten points form Gryffindor. I told you to go to potions, but I did not tell you that you could go then. I did not give you permission to leave the classroom at that moment.”

“Then why didn’t you say something as I left, Sir?” I snap, the injustice and anger of it all flaring up inside me. Dermot glares at me, and I’m convinced for a moment that he is going to hit me.

“Detention, boy. My office, tomorrow night. Eight o’clock sharp. Now get back in the classroom before I take more points!”


I gloomily trek up to Dermot’s office, Jason’s sympathetic face and Alfie’s furious verbal abuse of Dermot going through my head. I knock anxiously on the door, feeling more low than I’ve ever felt in my life – not even half term and I’ve already got a detention…

“Come in,” says a voice, but it is not Dermot’s. It is much higher, and softer. Quite clearly a woman’s.

I enter. Sitting at a desk in the centre of the room is a woman, maybe in her forties, with woody brown hair that has a few silvery greys in. Her eyes are pale green and her face has warm crinkles, but not too many.

“Ah, you’re Mr Lupin?” She is not smiling, rather, she seems to be trying her best to look stern, but I can tell that she is kind, and that her heart is in the right place. Unlike stupid old Dermot.

“Yes…” I say slowly, unsure of whom she is.

“I am Professor Allen. Professor Dermot was called to do an urgent raid just two hours ago, so I am covering for him for this detention and his lessons tomorrow. He has told me why you are here – there is no need to explain. He wants you to write some lines.” Professor Allen points to a piece of paper opposite her. She transfigures a cushion into a chair for me, and I sit. At the top of the page, in Dermot’s manically neat handwriting (seriously – every single letter is the perfect size and shape!) are the words:

I will not be cheeky or question the teacher’s authority.

I take a quill and ink bottle from my bag, and begin to write.

“Oh, Professor Dermot wished me to tell you that your family have been informed of your detention and misbehaviour.

“My family?” I ask, puzzled. There was only my Grandmother and Harry – he hadn’t written to them, had he?

“Your grandmother and godfather.”

A large ink blot is steadily gathering on my page, the edges branching out and sinking through the parchment.

“You… you told…”

“I did not tell anyone, Mr Lupin – it was Professor Dermot that wrote to your family.”

“Over something so small?!” I can scarcely believe it – doesn’t a student have to do something pretty big to deserve to have owl’s sent home?

Professor Allen sends me a piercing glare. “You were extremely rude to Professor Dermot-”

“No, I wasn’t!”

She sighs heavily and covers her face with her hands, leaning on her elbows. “He warned me of this…” she mutters to herself. “Just write your lines please, Mr Lupin.”

My jaw is clenched so tightly together that I’ll be very surprised if my teeth haven’t sunk into my gums. My quill trembles slightly as I grip it firmly, my knuckles white, as I slowly write out my lines.


Dear Ted,

Please try and stay out of trouble. I do not want another letter from Hogwarts. I understand that you do not get along with Dermot, but believe me, nobody is nasty with due cause. Look at Snape! I always thought he hated me for no reason, but he was actually an incredibly brave and worthy man. Sometimes you just have to look beyond certain characteristics of a person.

I know Dermot partly through reputation, and partly because he’s had to go into the Auror department a couple of times, and I’ll have you know that he is an amazing Hit-Wizard. One of the best. It will be good to learn from him. Just hold your tongue, Teddy, and try to stay on the right side of him.

Hope you’re well, we all miss our favourite teddy-bear,


I let out a frustrated half-sigh half-growl, and chuck the letter at Jason, who is grimacing and trying to read over my shoulder.

I pick up my grandmother’s.

Dear Ted,

Oh, Ted, what were you thinking? How could you be so cheeky?

I break off my reading to let out a rant to Alfie.

“I don’t know what he’s told them, because I wasn’t that cheeky at all! In fact, I wasn’t! I was merely pointing out the facts. He’s told them a big fat lie!”

I hope you’ve learnt your lesson, young man, and you won’t do it again, because Merlin knows your parents would be furious. Defence Against the Dark Arts should be your best subject-

I can’t read anymore, so I slam the parchment onto the table, fold my arms and begin to sulk.

“Teddy…” begins Alfie cautiously.

“Don’t talk to me. I can’t believe that they believed him over me!”

“You don’t know what he said in the letters, Teddy,” pointed out Jason.

I glare at him. “Well, I’m going to find out! I’ll write to Harry – he’s a soft touch, he’ll give in and do what I say… especially if I mention how hard it is being an orphan . . . ”

I grab a piece of parchment from my bag, and furiously scrawl out a letter to Harry.

Dear Harry,

What did Dermot say in his letter? Because whatever he’s told you, it isn’t true. I was merely pointing out that he had no right to take points from Gryffindor for something that he told me to do, and he said that I was being very rude, which I clearly wasn’t.

He seems to hate my dad, too – and always calls my mum Nymphadora Tonks, instead of Lupin, which really annoys me, obviously. Because being an orphan is really hard and all.

Also, me and Jason have been talking – is it okay if he and his family come to stay for Christmas? Grimmauld Place is plenty big enough, isn’t it? Or am I staying at Grandma’s this year?



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