Everything was perfect for the rest of December. We had a quiet Christmas together. Neither of us cared that the gifts under the tree weren't really from each other. They had though, been items we both needed. Most of our things had been forgotten in the cabin, and neither of us really wanted to go back there, and with good reason. If Selwynn found us there once, then he could find us there again. That was something I didn't want to happen again.

The awkward tension that had once been between Remus and me seemed all but forgotten. Neither of us brought it up, not really wanting to spoil the way things were now. Everything was perfect and that was the way we both wanted to keep it. We were simply happy knowing that we had each other and we were safe...for the moment.

I had taken most of January to learn about the Wolfsbane potion for Remus. While he still refused to tell me who was brewing it for him, I was quite happy to learn to make it myself for him. With a textbook beside me and Remus locked in a room for the night of the full moon, I began to teach myself how to brew the potion. For the first little while it was mostly learning what each ingredient did in the potion and how if put in, in the wrong sequence or not at all could ruin the potion all together. If I could get it perfect then Remus wouldn't have to depend on his mystery potion's master to make it for him.  I wanted to do this for him, I wanted to be able to help him in this little way. Potions had always been my favourite class at Hogwarts, and as soon as I started to brew them again, I remembered how much I loved potion making.

It took me two months, six potion bases, and three cauldrons before I finally perfected the base enough to be able to add the dangerous ingredients. I had hoped I would have been lucky and been able to manage the base right off the bat, but clearly six years of not brewing a single potion had made me a little rusty. The good thing was that I had managed to get the wolfsbane to mix correctly and change to the right colour. It still wasn't perfect though. I had to wait for the new full moon to add the next ingredient since I had not been able to make the base in time for this one.  Being as impatient as I am, though, how I managed to excel in potions was beyond me.

Even with perfecting the base of the potion, I was left with an uneasy feeling almost all the time. I told myself I was overreacting. When I wasn't working on one potion or another, my mind was lost to constant wonder of when my peace and happiness with Remus was going to end. I didn't want it to end, but the sinking feeling I had on a nearly daily basis that Selwynn was somewhere nearby. I knew as well as any that a hunter never gives up the hunt until he has caught his prey or he was dead. Knowing Selwynn the way I did, I knew he would never give up until I was his wife or he was captured by the Aurors.

If I wasn't bothered by at least a dozen thoughts a day about my situation, I was plagued with nightmares at night. Always the same one thought, and it scared me more than the situation I was in, in the first place.

The sound of the front door hitting the wall pulled her from her sleep. Terrified she sat there staring at the bedroom door hoping no one would dare come in. Knowing that the front door had swung open with enough force to be thrown off its hinges, her first thought was of Selwynn. He had found her again. It never made sense to her how he always knew where she was. No matter how many spells she used to hide from him, he always knew where to find her.

Slipping out of bed, she found herself drawn to the door that kept her assailant out and her safe. Reaching for the doorknob, she pleaded with herself not to open the door, to go back to bed and pretend she had heard nothing. Nothing changed the outcome; she still opened the door to find Selwynn standing there. His hand outstretched to her. Without thinking she took his hand and was pulled towards him.

He held her in his arms moments before they left the apartment. Mary found herself standing in a vast meadow with every sort of flower growing wildly around them. Behind her, she saw a small cottage with a garden of crystal roses. As she approached the cottage she could make out the whimper of a person from inside. Her first thought was of Remus, for some reason he hadn't been next to her when she woke up. When she opened the door, the scene before her was both shocking and terrifying.

Remus lay in the middle of the room in a pool of his own blood. A gash two inches long and cut down to the bone was across his thigh. Flies swarmed around him, she ran to his side swatting at the bugs. Dropping to her knees she cradled him in her arms, while forcing back her tears. He is still breathing, she reminded herself.

What did you do to him?” she begged Selwynn.

When magic seemed not to persuade him that you were mine, I had to resort to other measures. You are mine, and no one will stand in my way, Mary. How many times must I tell you?” Selwynn answered.

Please, let me get him to Saint Mungo's before he dies!” she pleaded. “I can't lose him too!”

I'm afraid I can't let you do that. You see, if he survives then he will try to stop us from being together. I won't let that happen.”

Tears began to fall down her cheeks as she realized that Remus was going to die in her arms. That she was never going to see him again. While she had always known there was a chance that she might lose him, she had never imagined him to die like this. She had never imagined his death to be so bloody. All she wanted was to find away to save him, even if that was impossible.

Remus,” she whispered to him, “Remus, I'm so sorry.” She cried harder as his face turned another shade of grey. “I... I love you Remus, I always will.” Lightly she kissed him even though she was certain he was already dead.

Covered in his blood she sat there staring angrily at the now empty room. Selwynn had left her alone with Remus's dead body. Why, she had no idea, but she knew when he came back for her, she was going to kill him.  Seconds seemed to pass when the bright morning sun rose into the sky bathing Mary in gold light. The door opened again and Selwynn appeared a happy grin on his face.

Nothing has changed, Selwynn, I still hate you and I will never marry you. You've taken everything from me. I will never be your wife. I'd sooner die than marry you, you deluded sick fuck!” she said a calm having taken over her.

I could give you everything you ever wanted,” he said approaching her.

|No you couldn't. You've killed everything I've ever wanted. I have nothing left to live for.”

In a flash of green, I found myself back in bed, next to Remus. I hated that dream. The only think it helped me realize was that had Remus not been with me all this time, I probably would have given up a long time ago. The dream tormented me and all I wanted was to live in peace again. I wanted my old life back where I didn't have to worry about being hunted by a delusional psychopath who wanted nothing more than to ruin my life.

I woke Remus up mostly because I wanted to have his arms around me. I needed to feel the comfort he gave me whenever I woke up from a bad dream, and because it would help reassure me that he was alive. Nothing scared me more than the thoughts of losing Remus. He kept me going when all I wanted was to give up. I couldn't have asked for more from the main I had grown to love.
When he woke up and saw the fear in my eyes and on my face, he knew immediately that I had had that dream again. I never told him what the dream was about. I never wanted him to know his death was what plagued my dreams night after night. We both knew there was always the chance that one or both of us could die, we just never spoke about it.

Wrapped up in his arms made everything better. He always knew how to make the bad thoughts I had go away. He knew the right things to saw at the right time to make me smile, and knew when nothing needed to be said at all. It took most guys a lifetime to figure out what Remus seemed to know naturally. However it was he knew how to make everything better was never something I thought about asking. All I cared about was knowing he was always there for me; that he would always be there for me. Remus was the perfect gentleman, the perfect man for any woman, and I was the luckiest woman on Earth to have snagged him.

“Will you ever tell me what you're dreaming about?” he asked softly.

“Maybe one day, but not right now. I can barely handle the dream when I'm sleeping, I don't really want to remember it when I'm awake too,” I explained.

It was the same explanation I gave him every time I had the dream and every time he would try and protest. Insisting that he couldn't help me if I wouldn't him. It was never about him helping, he helped enough simply by being there when I woke up. That was all I needed at the moment. He didn't want to see it that way. I suppose I understood why he would want to know about it. Talking about it scared me as much as closing my eyes to sleep knowing I would have that dream again. Reliving it every night was hard enough, I didn't want to think of it when I was awake.

Crawling out of bed, I found that no matter what I did, I couldn't shake the feeling that our peace in the flat was about to be ruined. There was no evidence that Selwynn had found us, but that did nothing to quiet my fears. He was out there somewhere and he was coming for us. That was enough to many any sane person paranoid.

Early morning sun filled the flat as Remus cleaned up the remains of our breakfast. He seemed as uneasy as I felt. We never spoke of what would happen if Selwynn found us again. We never mentioned any sort of a plan of escape or whether we should seek more help. As time went on I wanted more than anything for Selwynn to run into an auror and die. As long as he was alive I would never be safe. I was getting tired of living my life in fear. Something had to give, I just hoped that Remus and I had the strength to stay one step ahead of him.

“I think we should leave,” I said finally as the last of the dishes were put away. “I can't shake this feeling that we aren't safe here anymore.”

“Where would we go?” Remus asked.

We were both missing England even if there was never any mention of home. While Paris had become a home away from home, we knew that there was nothing like being in England where all our friends were. He was right though, even if Selwynn found us where would we go? Even I couldn't think of somewhere to go that would be safe. Nowhere was safe from a man who seemed to know where we were no matter what.

“Rome, somewhere in Canada, the United States even, Spain,” I said listing off some of the places I imagines Selwynn would never consider looking at. “Best bet would be the United States or Canada. I can't imagine him thinking of use going overseas. Australia might work too." 

“We'd have to get the Ministry's approval for travel overseas though, and that would leave a trail that Selwynn could follow. I don't think that would be the wisest idea. We could probably find somewhere in Europe that would work best. Though, as you said, nowhere is safe, we might as well stay put.”

“Not if we asked Michelle to send us there. We won't need any paperwork then.” I hated the idea of counting on Michelle again though, but we were running out of options.

If Remus didn't agree to leaving Paris for somewhere I felt safe, I had no idea what we were going to do. The apartment building was warded against wizards and all magic users except those who worked for Michelle. That still didn't make me feel any better though. All it would take was for one of them to be tricked by Selwynn and we'd be found. I couldn't risk that. I couldn't risk Remus being taken away from me again.

“Is all of this because of your nightmares?” Remus asked.

“No,” I stated hastily and maybe I was too quick to speak, but the look on Remus's face said he didn't believe me in the slightest.

Truth was, I really didn't know. I was scared of what would happen if Selwynn found us there, but Paris had grown on me, no matter how much I missed England. Two nights a week Remus and I would go out for the evening. Dinner at various different restaurants, then dessert somewhere around the Eiffel Tower. We'd walk hand in hand completely content in each other's company. Cloaked in magic so only we could see each other. Then we'd stop and catch a taxi back to the flat where we'd find ourselves curled up on the sofa staring out the large glass window at the beautiful stars that graced the sky with their luminous white light. Tonight was supposed to be one such night.

“Maybe we don't need to leave France. What if we found somewhere here? Maybe somewhere in the countryside?” I didn't know what else to do.

“Or we stay and surround ourselves with aurors and wait for him. This has gone on long enough Mary. We have to stop him so we can live normal lives. I won't let him hurt you anymore,” Remus said wrapping his arms around me.

It was never about how much Remus loved me or how much he was willing to give to keep me safe. I already knew because I would do the same for him. Nothing would keep the two of us apart. We would lay down our lives for each other, and while that was sweet and possibly scary, I couldn't imagine loving someone so much. I have never loved anyone the way I loved Remus, and I was glad to have found someone like him who completed me.

I turned around in his arms and kissed him. Hungry for the feeling of his lips against mine, hungry for complete abandon and safety in his arms. His lips were soft and gentle against mine. Whenever we were together everything made perfect sense. The way his hands felt against the small of my back. He knew everything I liked, everything that would make me forget about all the crap going on in our life.

Remus pulled me close, his kiss deepened. Giving myself to Remus had been easy. Falling in love – destiny. I let him carry me off to the bedroom. Our clothes fell in piles just inside the door. We clung almost desperately to each other, allowing deeper parts of ourselves to enjoy the moment. I could wait, I just didn't want to.

Pushing him onto his back, I smiled down at him. Our love making was always about giving ourselves over to the other so completely. There was no better feeling than being in love and sharing the moment with each other. That moment, when our bodies were joined together was absolutely the best feeling ever. Sex was never a huge part of our relationship, but even we couldn't ignore the desires we had. We made love until both of us were satisfied and collapsed into each other's arms. 

I giggled feeling absolutely blissful and Remus kissed me.

“I love you Remus,” I murmured and settled my head against his chest. 

“I love you too,,” He replied and kissed the top of my head.

The dream came again, only this time it was different. This time I knew something terrible had happened to Remus. How did I know? Easy. Everything felt wrong.  Every move I made was made without a purpose. I moved – walked, talked ate – because I had to not because I wanted to. I was numb.

I stood in front of the bathroom mirror, my eyes swollen from crying. My stomach was swollen from months of pregnancy that I couldn't remember. I ran my fingers over my tummy, trying desperately to remember how far along I was, trying to remember anything of the last several days. Nothing came to me. Only darkness. I knew immediately that something was terribly wrong with the child I carried, I just didn't know what, and I had no idea how to figure out what it was either.

Turning to leave, I screamed, no longer finding myself alone. Standing in the doorway was a child, no older than five with beautiful sandy blond hair and incredibly hypnotic amber eyes. I knew those eyes, they were the same eyes that helped me sleep at night. Remus. The child looked sad. Torn. 

Mummy?” He said softly, before throwing his arms around my legs, “why are you crying?”

Because....because I miss someone very much.”

He won't like that you are crying. He'll be angry. Mummy don't make him angry please?”

Why, honey? What will he do?”

The child walked away from me and I saw the wound on the back of his neck. He was dead, but he looked so real. He looked like a little angel. He turned back and smiled sweetly at me. He didn't need to tell me what would happen if I upset the man who had killed him.

He's coming for that,” the boy said pointing to my stomach. “He’ll kill you and take that abomination. You must not let him. Mummy, you need to go. Now. Before he returns. He is close. Go.”

And so I fled. Never knowing for sure who was following me, but the ghost child of the man I once loved continued to keep a close watch on me. Everywhere I went he came. He warned me of the dangers that came for me and the unborn child. I let him, welcoming his presence and enjoying his company. I knew little of how he had died, and I never asked. He was my son, and he protected me even in death.

Hide,” He called to me, and like I had every time he told me to, I hid.

We were in a rundown villa in Madrid, some muggle village where I doubted I would be found. The truth was, I was never safe anywhere. He always found me. I was growing tired of running and tired of being afraid all the time.

Hidden in the upstairs closet, I couldn't help but wonder if this would work again. I had hidden from |Selwynn in a closet before. There was no way I was going to manage to pull this off a second time, and I wasn't sure I wanted to. There was nothing left for me anymore. Remus was dead. I was haunted by my dead son. What more could happen to me?

The close door swung open and I sat staring up at Selwynn. Only it wasn't really hum. His eyes were so mean, so cold, and the strangest shade of blue I had ever seen. Flecks of gold and silver surrounded in a sea of blue. While he looked like the man who killed Remus, he certainly was not. He was something worse.

Mary, why do you run from me? I thought we were past this. You are my wife and I would do anything for you,” He said in a perfectly silky voice.

You are going to kill me for the child I carry. I can't allow that,” I answered in a strong voice, even though I certainly didn't feel very strong.

No, no I wouldn't. I couldn't. I love you and the baby. He will need his mother.”

She. She will need her mother,” I corrected him.

A girl?”” He looked angry at the idea, but the anger slowly slipped away and was replaced with pride. “She will be an amazingly powerful witch.”

And dangerous,” I whispered dropping my gaze from him.

There was something in his eyes that said he was still going to kill me. I had no idea how I was going to get out of this. I had to convince him I was an asset. Somehow he needed to believe I was going to support him. No matter what, I was not going to die here or by his hands. He may be the man I loathed, but if I was going to live then I had to do everything I hated. Including return with him to the house I was suppose to call home.

I woke up sobbing, and found Remus watching me carefully.  Terror filled my eyes as I realized he was afraid of my dreams as much as I was. Nothing good ever came from them. They were only a means making me hate our situation even more. Waking up sobbing after a passion filled afternoon was never something that put someone at ease. 

“I'm sorry if I woke you up,” I whispered between sobs.

“Please, let me in. Let me help you,” he pleaded with me.

“I can't, Remus. Please, understand that I can't.”

“Yes you can. They are only dreams Mary. They only have power if you give them power.  They can't hurt you.”

“Easy enough for you to say, you aren't the one having them.”

“I may not wake up every night screaming or crying, but that doesn't mean I am not suffering even as I sleep.” I must have looked shocked because he continued, “you aren’t the only one who is bothered by him.”

“What do you dream about?” I asked, ignoring the comment about being bothered by Selwynn. 

“I’ll tell you if after I’m finished you tell me about yours,” he stated.

“Fine,” I said with a heavy sigh.

“Not long after Selwynn captured me, he used to tell me all these things he had planned to do when he finally managed to convince you how wrong you were. The things he’d tell me made me sick. Half the time I tried to ignore him, but that only made things worse.” There was something in Remus’s voice that made me shiver. “Sometimes, I would get angry and that was always a bad idea. He’d make things worse on me the more he saw how I reacted to them.”

“Why? What did he do if you were angry?” It was a stupid question, I knew that, but I had to ask.

“Laugh and then proceed to torture me. Proof that he was better than me, he would say,” he sighed heavily. “I’d dream then that I’d find a way to get to you. Closer to the full moon though, and I’d always dream about killing him, but he was never around for the full moon, and I was always left waiting.

“Now though, I am tormented with dreams where he uses me to break you. I watch as you give in every night. I know it’s stupid and not real and that you would never do such a thing.”

He held me close and I let him. He needed that closeness as much as I did after I had my nightmares, I’m sure he needed it too after telling me about his. It left me feeling sad and scared. Not of Remus, but of myself. If Remus was dreaming of me giving in and so was I, how far off was that from the truth? How was I going to stop myself from letting it happen? The terrifying truth was that neither of us had answers, and that left me feeling…empty.

“I dream every night of watching you die. Holding you in my arms and knowing I can’t do a damn thing to save you. It’s always the same. You always die and I can’t change the outcome. The only thing that keeps me sane is waking up with you beside me,” I said weakly, not really wanting to go into any more detail than that.

“Then my dream changed and I was being haunted by our dead son. He was protecting me but was afraid of his…” I paused not sure I wanted to finish the thought.

“His what?” Remus asked, noting my hesitation and trying to pull the rest of the dream from me.

“His stepfather and unborn step-sister,” I said just managing to hold back a sob. “Both you and the boy were dead. I was married to Selwynn – or at least someone that looked like him. I was afraid of him, so I ran away. Only, he found me and I knew he was going to kill me to get to the baby. There was something terrifying about him, something that left me more afraid of him than of Selwynn now.

“The baby that I somehow knew was a girl was powerful and dangerous. Even before she was born I was afraid of her. The magic she had was worse than anything the Wizarding World would have ever seen before. I couldn’t let him raise her the way he wanted. She needed to e taught a softer side of life. So, I gave in. Promised I’d never run again if he’d let me live to raise the baby.”

Nothing made the way I felt any better. I had given in, in my dream. Something I swore I would never do, yet always there was a dream that said I’d do otherwise. Dreams were just my subconscious working the day’s events out, or in most cases for Remus and me, it was everything that haunted us. We were on the run together, and that made a lot of things hard on us, hard on our relationship. The one thing I could count on though, was knowing no matter what happened in my dreams, I’d wake up and find Remus laying next to me.

Remus tried to comfort me, but nothing worked. Not the warmth of his naked body, not the gentle caresses of his fingers on my cheeks. Nor the delicate kisses he laid upon my lips made me feel any better. I knew he wanted me to be happy and safe, but how could I when my own dreams betrayed me? When everything I swore I would do seemed to be for nothing whenever I closed my eyes to sleep?

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