As soon as they arrived back at Hogwarts Dumbledore greeted Dannie and Bria at the door. "I am very sorry that it took so long for us to find you, although I am glad to see both of you have decided to join us."
"I am honored to be here sir and I hope to be able to live up to your expectations." Bria replied.
Dumbledore smiled and whispered to her. "As long as you have fun with learning I am sure you will succeed." Then turning to Dannie "If you ladies would like to join us in the Great Hall, dinner is about to start and I would like to speak with you afterwards though."
"But of course." she replied.
The ladies entered the Great Hall and were surprised at how huge it was. They soon realized how many students must actually live here and for once Bria thought she just might find the place that she belongs. During dinner Bria and Dannie were introduced to all the teachers but Dannie still couldn't get past the familiar presence of Remus. After dinner Headmaster Dumbledore lead Dannie, Severus, and Remus to his office.
"Ms. Lightpaws, over the past few weeks we have had a position open here that I thought you could help us with."
"But Mr. Dumbledore Sir, I have no magic abilities or gifts. How could I possibly help out?"
"But my dear, you do. Weather you realize it or not, what your people call Shape Shifting is truly a magic of it's own. Very few people are born with the gift, as you well know. Not only that but your culture and background fits perfectly for the Herbology position that needs to be filled."
Dannie looked puzzled when Severus told her "I'm sorry. I am the one who told Albus about you and Bria. With her father being what he is I though he needed to know. Does she automatically change during the full moon cycle?"
Dannie looked down at the floor and holding back her tears she nodded. "That's not the only time though. See she has been going through exactly what I went through at her age. The other children on the Reservation either ignore or harass her not only for being a 'half-breed' but for also being a Shape Shifter. Because of it she has learned that the pack in our woods are very accepting of us. They have always been our only friends and no matter what they have been there when needed."
"Now Severus said when you met Bria's father you hadn't known what he was until day-break. Do you care to explain?"
"Well I had gotten into a huge fight with the elders one day due to my capabilities. They told me that if I continued to change then I must leave my home or I would have suffered like my mother. I was extremely upset that night so I decided to go out for a run with my friends. Unfortunately for an unknown reason I couldn't find anyone I knew. At that point I heard an unfamiliar howl, when I went to see what it was I noticed a new wolf had gotten stuck in a trap." she continued, "You don't understand sir, I had a feeling that this wolf was different, almost as if he was another Shape Shifter. With this curse nobody would ever consent to their son marrying me and as for the any regular wolf they were like my family so, I was 20 years old and destined to be an old maid. I never thought that I would get pregnant and curse my daughter. I didn't realize what he was until I heard him moaning in pain the next morning. Normal shape-shifting is not painful at all."
"My dear, in no way is this a curse. This is a gift that was given to you and that you have shared with your daughter. Besides there is no need for you to go on with your story. It seems that I have heard this tale before." Dannie was stunned as the elderly man continued. "You see as you have most likely learned by now when wolves mate it becomes a life long bond that cannot be broken by anything less than death. You see many years ago Remus graduated from Hogwarts and he moved in with his friends Sirius, James, and Lily who was the mother of the young man you met earlier in the robe shop. Well Lily was pregnant with Harry at that time glancing at Severus so instead of staying around and risking any harm to Lily or the baby I agreed to send Remus on a trip to America. After Harry was born Remus finally returned but I could tell he was lost inside. May I ask when was the last time you went running?"
Dannie sighed "Not since Bria was conceived."
"Well usually the dark forest is off limits. I know you have most likely longed to run with you daughter, why don't you take the opportunity to do so tonight. It's just so that you can feel more comfortable with your new surroundings. The full moon isn't for another two weeks now and your daughter will have no choice but to change so she needs to learn the grounds."
"But what if we get lost?"
"Sirius is also an Animagus but, his form is a dog." Dannie smirked while she thought so fitting and Remus smiled at her as if knowing her thoughts. Dumbledore continued "I could ask him to escort you around."
"Thank you sir. Let me speak with Bria, but I'm sure she will love the chance." And with that she left the room.
"Now as for you Severus." Dumbledore started as Remus smiled. "Don't be too happy yet Mr. Lupin. This time I expect that you will slow down. I know you two are connected but you both have to get to know each other this time. By the way, congratulations. It's a Girl!" And with those words, cigars with pink bands popped up in their hands. Dumbledore turned his attention back to Severus. "As you most likely realize Harry has now turned 15. I warned you that the day would come that you and he would have to have a talk. Have you decided what you are going to say to him?"
"No sir I have not. I still can't reveal that he could possibly be my son. He resembles James too much and the plan has worked so far."
"Severus, if I remember right, there was a time you and James could have passed as twins. You two are cousins and until puberty hit the resemblance was uncanny."
Snape closed his eyes and slowly shook his head. "He hates me though. How will I ever get him to understand?"
"Well, before Lily died she charmed her diary to appear in his possession on his 15th birthday. What he reads in it just may help you out."
Remus spoke up. "Sev, you didn't see Harry in town today. He has changed quite rapidly. He and his friends may have dismissed it at this point as a result for mal-nourishment he has undergone this summer but, once he becomes healthy again they are going to see the difference." Snape looked at Remus then Dumbledore as Remus continued. "Sirius and I have invited Harry to stay with us here next week, we are hoping he will have read the diary by then and we can help ease the blow before the term starts."
Snape nodded in agreement
"Oh and one last thing." Remus stated. "It seems your son has eyes for my daughter. If he dares to hurt her like you did Lily then I will take care of him."
Snape collapsed in his chair in shock. Oh shit, I am in trouble! He thought.