Chapter 3 : Birthright
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“You’re her daughter. So lies should come first-nature to you.”
What did that mean?
What had Megara lied about?
She clasped her hand round the necklace, feeling the grooves carved into it. A Celtic design, Kierra had said, and a symbol of the Seeing Eye; oddly enough, Megara had come from Scotland.
And she had been a Seer.
* * *
Sirius paced, the same time as Shealin was holding Megara’s necklace, as Remus watched him.
“Why didn’t you tell me Meg’s daughter was with you?” he demanded of Remus. “I wouldn’t have allowed her in the house.”
“Precisely,” sighed Remus.
“I should have realised whose child she was,” said Sirius fiercely. “I must have been blind not to see, originally. Why d’you have her anyway?”
“Megara gave her to me,” said Remus, who had been waiting for, and dreading, this question. “Two weeks after you were arrested. Shealin had been attacked by Fenrir Greyback.”
Sirius whirled about. “You didn’t tell me…”
“It was my fault,” said Remus. “I was supposed to be keeping my eye on Megara, I turned my back, and Greyback pounced. You weren’t there when Megara brought Shealin in,” he said, and his voice became pained, “bleeding from the wounds. He’d done quite a lot of harm to her. She’s very fortunate to have survived at all, her flesh was nearly ripped from her body, but he left her face untouched—a first for him. And where were you when it happened? Azkaban. She knows nothing of her past, and very little of Megara. That necklace she always wears…it’s all she has of her mother. Crafted for Rowena Ravenclaw, and passed down from mother to daughter, from Seer to Seer.”
“Shut up,” snapped Remus. “You lost your rights when you left. She is my daughter now.”
“Not in birth!”
“But in soul, in spirit, in name. Shealin Johanna Lupin, adopted daughter of Remus John Lupin. Not Shailene Cataluna Trelawney-Black, youngest daughter of Sirius Black and Megara Cataluna Trelawney-Black.”
“Have you…have you been in touch with Meg?” Sirius’s voice was soft.
“No one has. Not even Faye. From what I got out of her, they had a nasty fight, and parted ways.”
“I don’t know. Faye still refuses to tell me anything.”
“Do Kierra and Jake have any idea…?”
“No, and that’s how Faye wants it. She can’t have her children in harm’s way. Quite a devoted parent.”
Sirius read into the snub, and had the decency to flush red. “You’ve got a lot of nerve—” he started.
“Do I?” said Remus, raising his eyebrows. “Oh, hello, Faye,” he said, as the door opened.
Anne Pettrew rolled her eyes. “Anne, Remus. Honestly, you’re as bad as Sirius. With the two of you calling me ‘Faye’ every time you see me, my children will know who I am within the week.”
“They’re wonderful,” said Remus. “Kierra seems to have struck up an acquaintanceship with Shealin, which is what she needs.”
“And Jake, is he settling in? You’re here more often than I am.”
“The Weasley twins have sort of adopted him. He’s got a knack for inventing things, a good brain,” said Sirius.
Anne seemed to swell with pride at the praise, and her eyes—the same colour Fabian’s had been, Sirius noted after a minute of studying her—took on a newfound glow. “Like his father’s.”
Remus nodded, a bit pleased when he realised she had talked about Fabian without reluctance. “You’ve done well with them,” he said. “Better than one would expect, with what you’ve gone through…”
She acknowledged the statement with an inclination of her head, not delving any further.
“And you, with Shealin,” she said. Sirius stiffened at the name, and Anne allowed a small dangerous smile to curve her lips, as her back was to him. Remus gave her a warning look, which she ignored, as was Anne (or Faye, if you will. Even Remus was having trouble not calling her by her real name). “Considering the circumstances, she’s your daughter in all but blood—though that’s debatable, as she was mauled by Greyback—”
“The girls made an interesting discovery today,” remarked Sirius coolly. “In your old room. They found the pictures, and your diary. Luckily they’ve not read it yet.”
Anne smiled bitterly. “And I expect they spotted you and Megara, intertwined like a pair of snakes? No wonder you and Remus are arguing.”
“We’re not arguing,” Sirius snapped, “we’re having a discussion.”
“It didn’t take me long to figure it out,” Anne said, with a bit of venom. “She has the look of you, doesn’t she? I saw it almost instantly.”
That brought a sort of thrill, though Sirius couldn’t explain why. “She looks more like Meg.”
“At first glance, yes. The second, third or fourth? No. So tell me, what are you going to do?”
“Nothing,” muttered Sirius. “As Moony so kindly pointed out to me, I relinquished my parental rights the moment I went to save Prongs and Lily.”
“You’ve forgotten how I feel,” said Anne harshly. “I have to look at my daughter every day.”
She looked at Remus. “He really hasn’t been updated, has he?” she said sourly.
“I’m afraid we haven’t gotten round to that,” said Remus apologetically.
Her eyes flashing, she whipped back to Sirius. “My Lily,” she said in tight, ruthless, controlled tones, “was given away to someone who could care for her more fully than I. Although it was my idea, I have had my own regrets over the years. I never thought I would see her again, and then I came back, and now I’m forced to interact with the child I knew for only a few months.”
“But it was your choice,” said Sirius, who looked quite stunned by her announcement. “You gave her up, and she went to another family. One that actually wanted her.”
“That’s not true!” Anne shouted, leaping to her feet, her hand flying towards her pocket. Sirius steeled himself, waiting—
“Don’t do it,” ordered Remus, seeing Anne’s face go bone-white. “Just stop it right now, both of you.”
Sirius glared at Anne mutinously. “I’m going to bed,” he said, and walked out of the room, slamming the door behind him.
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