The long awaited ch14! (it's quite a long one too! lol) Don't forget to review! The rest of the night was spent in the Great Hall, where the birthday group had remained throughout the day, apparently discussing Order matters. Harry settled himself in a seat between Ron and Hermione and found that he was also opposite Remus, who smiled warmly at him. Harry couldn’t remember feeling so happy. The past few weeks had been hard, in fact the last few years had been hard! But since loosing Sirius, Harry had felt like a part of himself had died with him, and it was only now, when he looked around him and saw all of the smiling happy faces that he found that, that hole wasn’t quite so big anymore. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Later that evening, a rather disgruntled Severus Snape walked along the lawns of Hogwarts’. He had just apparated to Hogsmede village from the lair of the Dark Lord himself. He had been surprised to see the large number of Deatheaters that had been called to the night’s meeting, he assumed Voldemort wasn’t pleased with how they had allowed Potter to once again escape with his life. Snape had been right to assume so. It was a truly humbling experience to witness grown men brought to tears whilst writhing in agony on the floor, the effects of the Cruciatus curse upon them. Why he had ever thought it a good idea to join the dark side and their campaign of ridding the world of all those who, in their Lord’s eyes, were not worthy of life, escaped him completely. He watched as countless Deatheaters knelt before their master, kissing the hem of his robes whilst pleading their loyalty to him. He would sneer, kick them away and then mercilessly yell ‘CRUCIO’ at their hooded and masked faces. Severus had watched with mounting anxiety after each were called upon to be punished. And then it had been his turn. Severus entered the castle, a draft swept through the quiet halls as his long, black robes billowed behind him. He marvelled at how much quieter the castle was when a pack of red heads were not stampeding around the castle. Bloody Weasley’s. ‘Finally’, he thought as he neared the entrance to his quarters. The after effects of the multiple punishments thrown at him were beginning to take their toll on his body. He went to unlock the door with a raspy, ‘Alohomora’ but found the door already unlocked. He withdrew his wand, it held firmly ahead of him, as he slipped soundlessly into the fire-lit room. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ After everyone had gone home, or returned to their own quarters inside the castle, Harry found himself back in Remus’ quarters sat in front of the log fire. Remus sat next to him tentatively sipping at hot cocoa, as he stared silently into the burning embers. He was yet to give Harry his birthday present from him, but thought it would be best to give it to him later. Harry watched his Godfather. He was beginning to get a headache, he almost felt like he had a cold, but he had been perfectly fine earlier and so didn’t think that could be the reason for his sudden feeling ill. Suddenly the pain in Harry’s head seared and his scar burned whit-hot against his skin. Remus spilt his cocoa slightly as he turned sharply to look at Harry who was holding his scar. ‘Harry? Harry what is it? Is it Voldemort?’ Remus asked urgently as he attempted to calm Harry down. ‘N-No, it’s not Voldemort. It’s different…different than before… I think… I think… It’s…it’s the link…’ Harry gasped between the pain that was steadily growing in intensity. Remus stared at Harry in horror. ‘The link? But then that means it must be me? Doesn’t it? I’m causing Harry pain?… Remus, pull yourself together! Harry needs help!’ Remus scolded himself mentally. Harry had been too focused on the pain in his scar to hear what Remus had said, he was now almost doubled-over with the pain. His breaths coming in shallow gasps as tears sprouted from his eyes. Remus physically shook himself from his stupor and bent down to pick Harry up from where he was now kneeling on the floor. He may of looked weak, but he carried Harry with extraordinary strength; although Harry was very light anyway, he rushed from the room and ran as fast as he could to the hospital wing. ‘Madam Pomfrey!’ Remus hollered as he entered the previously silent infirmary. He gently laid Harry down upon the nearest bed, who was muttering incoherently under his breath now, as Madam Pomfrey appeared wrapping a large cloak around herself. ‘Remus? What’s happened now?’ the old witch asked as she moved toward where Harry lay. Remus was pale and shaking. ‘I-I d-don’t know. H-He was f-fine…’ Madam Pomfrey moved over to her store cupboard and returned with a small glass vial, which she handed to Remus. ‘Here, drink this. It’s a calming potion,’ Poppy said as she returned her attention back to Harry who had grown quiet. ‘Whatever it is, it seems to be fading,’ Poppy admonished. Remus had just finished the potion. He already felt calmer than he had done before, and seeing that Harry looked slightly better than he had done, he allowed a small flood of relief to fill his body before finally answering Poppy’s original question. ‘Thank you,’ he took a deep breath before continuing, ‘ He was fine. Then I noticed he was clutching his scar, it was hurting him. But then it got worse. He said it wasn’t Voldemort, that it was… the link,’ he answered as he moved round to the left side of Harry’s bed and clutched his hand in his. Poppy’s eyes were wide. ‘I’ll send for Albus.’ Remus nodded as he perched on the edge of a seat by Harry’s bed, still holding Harry’s hand tightly. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ‘Headmaster,’ Severus sighed as he lowered his wand. ‘Was there something I could do for you?’ he asked trying to remain as calm and unreadable as possible. Dumbledore surveyed Severus over his half-moon glasses. He noticed he walked with a slight limp, his robes were messy as if he’d been laying on a dusty ground, and he looked even paler than usual. ‘Actually Severus, I was wondering how you were. I noticed you returning and decided to come down and meet you,’ Dumbledore replied simply. ‘Yes you decided to comedown, let yourself into my private quarters, light yourself a fire, and all to probably interrogate me over what I witnessed at my meeting with the Dark Lord’, Snape huffed to himself. ‘Are you alright Severus?’ Dumbledore asked sincerely. Severus hesitated before answering, ‘I’ll live,’ he answered stiffly. He didn’t care for other people’s pity or sympathy, even if it were from Dumbledore. Dumbledore sighed before nodding. However, before he could continue his questioning, a frantic looking Poppy Pomfrey came bustling into the room unannounced, much to Snape’s displeasure. ‘Albus, you are needed in the hospital wing,’ Poppy announced urgently. Dumbledore stood and moved toward the woman as he asked, ‘Who is it Poppy?’ ‘Harry Potter.’ With renewed speed they swiftly left together, leaving an exhausted Severus Snape to flop into the armchair in front of the log fire . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Soon enough, Dumbledore strode into the infirmary wearing a night cap and long violet robe that was embroidered with moon and stars. He was led to Harry’s bed by a flustered looking Madam Pomfrey. Dumbledore surveyed Harry, who had been slipping in and out of consciousness the whole time of being in the hospital wing. Remus could hardly pry his eyes away from his charge to answer Dumbledore’s questions. Dumbledore sighed, he was afraid something like this would happen sooner or later. ‘Remus, how are you feeling?’ Dumbledore asked, although he did not remove his gaze from Harry’s form. Remus was to say the least, perplexed by the question. ‘What do you mean Albus? It’s Harry who is ill! Not me!’ Remus exclaimed. Dumbledore turned to look at Remus, his blue eyes had only the faint remnant of a twinkle. ‘I was merely implying that if what Harry said is true; that this has something to do with the link between the two of you, then surely you would be affected also. How are you feeling Remus?’ Dumbledore reiterated. Remus thought about that for a moment. The full moon was tomorrow so he was already feeling ill, nothing out of the ordinary from his usual pre-transformation nights… Oh no! It suddenly dawned on Remus like a lead weight had just been dropped on him. ‘Albus, the full moon is tomorrow night! That’s why this must be happening! I don’t feel any different than what I normally would, but Harry… he must be feeling some of my… my pain,’ by the time Remus had concluded his diagnosis of the situation he spoke in a bare whisper, but the others heard him clear enough. Once again Dumbledore sighed. ‘If that be the case Remus, and it seems as though it is. Then I will ask Severus to brew an altered form of the Wolfsbane potion, for Harry,’ Remus looked hard at Dumbledore, shock and anxiety evident on his young yet worn face, ‘Just as a precaution, Remus. I am not saying that Harry will turn; that would be extraordinary! No, it would merely stop any part of the wolf that resides in you, from engaging in Harry’s mind,’ Dumbledore finished calmly, before sweeping out of the infirmary to inform Severus of the potion that they would need. ‘R-Remus?’ Harry’s voice was scratchy and barely audible. Remus turned to look at Harry. He still had his eyes closed and his face was contorted into a look of sheer pain. Remus dragged his chair closer to Harry’s side, his hand never leaving his. ‘Ssh it’s ok Harry. I’m here, I’m here,’ Remus replied in a soothing voice. Poppy handed Remus a vial of dreamless sleep potion to give to Harry, and the two of them helped him sit up to take it, before he collapsed back onto his pillows moments later. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Severus Snape was busy flicking through his textbooks in the gloom of his dungeons, he couldn’t believe that he had been dragged into doing yet another favour for Potter and his Wolf of a Guardian. Worse still, was the fact that the potion that was required would be difficult to brew and could inflict many side effects if not concocted properly, it would require his full attention throughout the night, and what for? Potter! ‘Bloody Potter!’ Snape chimed in his thoughts. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The following morning Harry awoke to feel extra weight across his stomach, blearily he looked down to see the misshapen form of Remus, sleeping with his head resting across his body. Harry allowed himself a small smile at his Godfather, he also noticed that he was clutching his hand tightly, he allowed these thoughts to drift as he fell back into darkness. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Many hours later a rather tired and unhappy potion’s master entered the infirmary, a foul smelling, smoking goblet in his hand. ‘Oh good,’ Poppy sighed with relief, ‘Thank you Severus.’ Snape scowled at the woman. He had been working intensely throughout the night on the potion he had just handed the busy-body of a medi-witch, and that was all he got! He turned to see Potter laid-up in bed, still asleep, a thin film of sweat layered his face, his cheeks flushed. However he turned his scowl into his trademark sneer when he noticed the ‘wolf’ had all but carelessly thrown himself on top of the feverish boy. He exited the infirmary as he allowed the doors to slam with a loud snap, successfully startling Remus from his slumber. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Later that night, Remus found himself back in his private quarters, a smoking goblet sat on the desk in front of him, ready to be consumed. He sighed. He hated that his being a werewolf had now been confirmed as part of Harry’s pain. He had spoken to Snape and Dumbledore about it earlier, which had been an entirely uncomfortable conversation to the say the least. Snape had been his usual self, never letting up on his tirade of insults about him being a werewolf, and now, his attachment to Harry. Sighing again, he downed the Wolfsbane potion in one before moving toward the door and setting many shields in place, successfully shutting out anyone and everyone, and stopping his wolf form from escaping… just in-case. Outside, a darkened cloud moved across the full moon. It’s light cast down upon the grounds of Hogwarts, illuminating the lake and Hagrid’s deserted hut. As it did so, a wolf’s howl could be heard, reverberating from the second floor. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Harry’s eyes sprang open so fast he caused the people in the room to jump two inches into the air. ‘Ah, Potter. Here, drink this,’ commanded Snape, as he handed Harry the goblet of potion he had made earlier. Harry looked at the smoking goblet; raising it to his nose, he almost retched from the smell of it. ‘Um… What is it, sir?’ Harry asked, eyeing the goblet disdainfully. Snape rolled his eyes at the insufferable brat. Didn’t he know he had better things to be doing rather than coddling him? ‘Drink it Potter! It’s for your own good. Now, drink!’ Snape ordered. Harry didn’t argue, he quickly gulped it down, purposefully holding his breath and screwing up his eyes as he did so. However, he was pleasantly surprised when it actually tasted rather nice, like apple almost. He handed Snape back the empty goblet, who quickly swiped it from his hand, as if he thought he would be clumsy enough to drop it. ‘Good. Now I can get back to my work,’ Snape muttered to himself as he left the ward. It was then that Dumbledore came into focus. His blue eyes twinkling slightly behind his half-moon glasses, as Harry noticed just how old Dumbledore looked. Much older than when he had left at the end of last year, when… He didn’t want to think about that. Thankfully, Dumbledore chose this moment to speak. ‘I’m glad to see you are feeling slightly better Harry. We will have a proper discussion about what happened to you yesterday, once the full moon has passed. For now though, I feel it best if you remain in here for the night and tomorrow as well,’ Harry was about to protest that he was feeling fine when Dumbledore put up a hand to placate him. ‘Yes, I know you may feel fine at the moment Harry, but that potion does have a few side-effects and I would feel happier, if you remained in the hospital wing until Remus returns tomorrow, understand?’ ‘Yes sir,’ Harry answered somewhat disappointed that he would be spending a total of nearly three days in the hospital wing for one short burst of pain in his scar. He found it slightly odd, but decided not to, mention anything in front of the headmaster for the time being. ‘Good. Goodnight Harry,’ Dumbledore replied before leaving the hospital wing, and Harry to a fussing Madam Pomfrey. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ok guys, that was the 14th chapter! Yay! I can’t believe how long it’s taken me to get this one up! So sorry about that, I’ll try not to do that again… :) Hope you liked it anyway! Thanks to all my wonderful reviewers! I love hearing your thoughts and opinions, so keep them coming! ALSO, is there anything you might want to see happen in the story? Not major plot lines, as they are already sorted, but little stuff like, Quidditch, Weasley visits, More romance? More action? More Remus/Harry stuff? Um… More Snape (God he’s fun to write! Lol) um… I don’t know, but if you do, don’t hesitate to ask in a review!! Thanks! ~Sam :) PS) I know I said Remus’ present to Harry would be in this chapter, but I didn’t get to fit it in, so it will be in the next :p
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