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Chapter 36 : Chapter 36: Missing Memories
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Italic text refers to when TQG is using third person POV to relive a memory.
Normal text is what I've been using in first peson POV and is in the 'present' time.
Alright then, grab a blueberry muffin, settle into your chair, and enjoy!
Chapter 36: Missing Memories
The feeling of falling had subsided. I opened my eyes and looked around. “This is the Hospital Wing?” Yes it was, but there was something different about it. Everything in here wasn’t as vibrant as I knew it. It’s like it was just- a memory.
“You’re right.” Remus appeared behind me. He pointed to Pensieve-Pomfrey in her office. She then scurried to the last bed in the wing. It had curtains drawn around it. “These are Poppy’s memories of September 9th of last fall. The morning after the first full moon of the year.” He took a deep breath. “Just watch, and you should understand.”
So we stood there, by the Hospital Wing doors, waiting for something. Waiting for-
Thursday, September 9
Artemis opened the Hospital Wing doors, still working on shoving some letters into her book bag. Her eyes scanned the wing, seeking out Madam Pomfrey. Her smile faltered a little when she notice the curtains drawn around the last bed. But she approached the end of the wing calmly.
When she came to the corner of the curtains, her eyes widened. “Remus!” She ran to the side of his bed.
Remus Lupin laid on that bed, covered in cuts, scratches, and welts. His torso was already wrapped in white gauze but his arms were still untended. Blood trickled down onto the white blankets.
“Oh no, Remus!” Artemis cried. Her bag dropped to the ground. “Are you alive?” She paused, looking at his chest rising and falling with each breath and how his wounds continued to bleed. “Sorry, stupid question.”
Artemis looked up, again seeking out Pomfrey but with more urgency. When she didn’t see anyone, she took out her wand and pointed it at Remus’s shoulder. “Episkey.”
Artemis’s eyebrows furrowed when nothing happened to stop the cut from bleeding. She touched the skin around the wound. Her mouth parted slightly when she didn’t get the results she wanted.
“Episkey,” she repeated, her voice clearer and firmer this time. But again, nothing happened.
Madam Pomfrey finally came out of her office, holding a large glass containing a potion of some sort. She looked calm until her eyes landed on Artemis. Her fingers tightened their grip on the glass. “Artemis?! What are you doing-? I meant to tell you that you didn’t have to come in today. Oh dear.”
“Madam Pomfrey, you have to help Remus!” Artemis yelled. “Something is wrong with him! I tried to heal that large cut on his shoulder, but the spell’s not working for me. Of course, I’ve never used it before, but maybe you could-”
“Artemis, slow down,” Pomfrey said. She continued to Remus’s side and placed her hand gently behind his head. Getting him into a mostly upright position, she put the cup to Remus’s mouth. He drank up the potion, even while unconscious. He sputtered some of it out a few times, but Pomfrey didn’t flinch once. “There you go dear, drink it all up,” she whispered. When the potion was fully consumed, she took the glass away. Pomfrey’s actions seemed to be routine.
“What’s that potion?” Artemis asked.
“Something to help ease the pain,” Pomfrey said with no emotion in her voice. “Remus’s wounds are a bit- tricky- to heal, so I give him something before I start any of the major repairs to his system.”
“What makes his wounds tricky? Just last night, Remus looked ready to faint. And now he has all these scratches and . . .” She looked at the skin, her eyes focusing in on some of the raw bits of flesh on his forearm. They were dots of red forming a semi-circle. Almost like bite marks. But the marks had to be made by something with a large jaw and a powerful biting force.
Artemis continued to study the wounds. She chewed the bottom of her lip as she gazed at Remus. And then, her eyes widened. She took a sharp breath. She rocked back slightly as if slapped.
“Remus is a werewolf, isn’t he?” she whispered.
“I don’t believe it,” I whispered. I looked back up at Remus, the real Remus, beside me. “I figured it out like that? I’ve known about you since September?”
Remus placed a finger over his lips. “Sh. There’s more.” He shuffled on his feet as the scene continued before us.
Pomfrey and Artemis continued to stare at each other, waiting for something. Pomfrey’s face was unreadable as she studied Artemis. Artemis kept her gaze locked with her mentor, awaiting confirmation.
Finally, Pomfrey sighed. She looked away. “Yes,” she whispered.
Artemis groaned. “Well that sucks.”
Pomfrey’s gaze shot back to Artemis in an instant. “What did you say?” she snapped. “I thought you of all people would not-”
“It sucks,” Artemis repeated slowly, “because this is a terrible condition. He’s too good of a guy to have to worry about all the bloody prejudices against his kind.” Artemis paused, her eyes seeming to lose focus on the world around her for an instant. But then they came back into focus and leveled on Pomfrey. “Just because he’s different thirteen days of the year, most of the wizarding world considers him dangerous? Bloody idiots.”
“So, you don’t care that he’s a werewolf?” Pomfrey asked softly.
“Of course not! He’s actually the only friend I have here at Hogwarts.” She looked down, her eyes growing distant again.
Pomfrey turned back to return to her office, taking the empty glass with her.
“Uh, Madam Pomfrey?” Artemis called out before she could disappear.
She stopped. “Yes, Artemis?”
“Can I help? Treat Remus’s wounds I mean.”
Pomfrey smiled and nodded. “I think he would appreciate that gesture. I’ll show you the spells I’ve found most useful. You can apply the potions to his arms.”
Artemis worked silently with Pomfrey, using the potions provided to mend the broken skin and clear up the bruises that normal means would not be able to accomplish. As she worked, Artemis kept chewing at her lips in thought. A few times, she shook her head back and forth slightly, barely noticeable.
“I shouldn’t even know about this,” Artemis muttered after a half hour. She continued to run a cloth over Remus’s remaining scratches and cuts on his arms. Each pass made the injuries less and less noticeable, slowly becoming faint scars.
“Artemis, what’s done is done. We can’t change the past.”
But Artemis shook her head. “I’ve invaded Remus’s privacy. It would be like him reading my diary, if I had one. Or at least reading all my letters back and forth to home. He might freak out when he finds out that I know.”
“He should know you can keep a secret,” Pomfrey said. But she stopped tending to Remus’s chest wounds to look across the bed to her student.
“But he would think things should be different between us,” Artemis insisted. She pressed a palm against her left temple. “He’d know that I knew. I think the best thing would be if I didn’t know at all.”
“What do you mean?”
Artemis removed her hand from her head. “I want you to cast a memory charm on me, making me forget this entire morning.”
“Have you lost your mind, Artemis?! Certainly you don’t have to go to such extremes to-”
“No, just listen! My dad talks about casting the memory charm over Muggles all the time! He says it causes no lasting damage, and so long as it is done correctly the charm should have no side effects. This way, I won’t be any wiser to the situation and Remus can tell me his secret if and when he chooses to.”
Pomfrey pressed her lips together. “Maybe we should wait for Remus to wake up and see how he feels about-”
“No, if he finds out that I’ve found out, he might want to avoid me.” She took a deep breath. “I just want things to stay the same between us. No one would know what happened this morning besides you.” Artemis tried to smile. “And you’ve done a find job of taking care of Remus. I can tell.”
Pomfrey looked away, obviously thinking about her options. “Maybe I should consult the Headmaster . . .”
Artemis shook her head. “Madam Pomfrey, please. I just want Remus’s friendship more than these memories. I’ve always been one to do anything for her friends.” She paused. “Look, if you won’t help me, then I’m sure I can figure out how to-”
“I’ll do it,” Pomfrey said. “You never know what might happen if someone erases their own memories. But I hope you know what you’re doing.”
Artemis brightened. “In a few minutes, I won’t know what I’ve been doing at all, so why should it matter?” Her smile faded slightly. “I know I want this. Please.”
Pomfrey walked around the bed to stand in front of Artemis. They remained still for over a minute, waiting for the other to back down.
“I’m sorry,” Pomfrey finally said. She pointed her wand to Artemis’s head. “Obliviate.”
Artemis’s green eye grew distant, losing contact with Pomfrey’s. She just stood there, her face void of any expression or emotion.
“Come along, dear,” Pomfrey said, putting her hand behind Artemis’s back. She guided the young witch to the double doors. “It’s so wonderful that you you’re taking such a great step towards your career while still in school. Thank you so much for your help this morning, Artemis. My potions cabinet has never been so neat since I started working here. You’d better hurry up, class starts soon.”
Pomfrey gave Artemis a final push out of the double doors before slamming said doors shut. “Merlin forgive me,” she whispered, leaning against the doors.
“That’s why?” I muttered, watching Pensieve-Pomfrey walk back to the last bed in the wing. “I did this whole memory-loss thing to myself?”
Remus sighed. “You don’t know how much I wanted to stop you. I’m usually too weak to move anything after a full moon. I tried telling you to stop. I didn’t-” He shook his head. “Do you remember that the others attacked you for ‘no reason’ right after this first Obliviate?”
“Yeah,” I said. “Wait, if they knew I-!”
“Shh,” Remus said. “You wanted to know exactly why they attacked you. This is what they saw.” Remus waved his wand, making the whole scene change until we were back in the Hospital Wing.
Thursday, September 9
In the next instant, everything was set back to how it was before Artemis showed up. Pomfrey was working in her office, collecting the various potions she would need. Remus was again lying on the bed with all of his injuries still bleeding. Untreated.
But back against the opposite wall, looking across to Remus’s bed, stood PB&J. They were huddled close together, seemingly squished for no reason.
“They weren’t in the Hospital Wing-” I started to argue.
“Yes they were. James has an invisibility cloak that we’ve used to sneak around the castle at night. It used to cover all four of us in first and second year. These are Sirius’s memories, so that’s how we can see them now. Just watch.”
“I forgot how bad Moony is on Remus’s body,” Sirius whispered. “Too bad he can’t take a holiday from his lycanthropy.”
“At least he got down to the shack in time,” James whispered. “I knew he shouldn’t have stopped to help those first years.”
“Why are we whispering?” Peter asked loudly. “We already put up a muffling charm so Pomfrey can’t hear us.”
“Because we sound cooler when we whisper!” Sirius whispered excitedly.
“It’s also so we can hear over Sirius’s poor jokes,” James added. “Owe, Pads! Off my foot!”
PB&J stopped messing around when the double doors opened, revealing Artemis coming in for her morning Healer duties.
“What is she doing here?” Sirius hissed, glaring at the witch.
“Don’t go to the curtain, don’t go to the curtain,” James whispered.
But of course, Artemis discovered Remus on that last bed. She tried to heal one of his wounds with no results. She confronted Pomfrey. Watched as powerful potions had an effect on Remus’s system. And came to the conclusion that Remus was a werewolf.
“Bloody hell,” James whispered.
“Who does that little bookworm think she is?” Sirius hissed. “I’m gonna-!” He stepped forward, attempting to get to the witches surrounding his mate’s bed.
“No! Wormtail, hold him!” Peter and James each took one of Sirius’s arms, dragging him out and away from the Hospital Wing. “Maybe it won’t bother her so much,” James suggested, grunting with every tug. “She might not be like-”
Pomfrey finally confirmed for Artemis that Remus was indeed a werewolf.
Artemis groaned. “Well that sucks.”
James nearly let Sirius’s arm go. Nearly. But he managed to get them out of the door. “Come on,” James said sternly, heading towards the Potions classroom. “Let’s teach Monroe about the fine art of keeping a secret.”
James explained the plan as they walked. They chose an empty classroom, in which Peter would stand by ready to close and lock the door. James got all the students away from the straightest path between the Hospital Wing and potions, not wanting to involve innocents. Sirius, barely controlling his anger, was assigned to follow Artemis from the Hospital Wing, sending her into the empty classroom when she got within blasting range.
Artemis walked the corridors right on schedule, as if she had been included in on the plan. Under the Invisibility Cloak, Sirius nearly cursed Artemis three times before she finally got in front of the open door. He sent his hardest blasting curse at her, knocking her off her feet and into the classroom.
“What in Godric’s name is going on?!” she yelled looking back into the hall. Her eyes flickered to the ground as Sirius stomped into the room.
Peter locked the door behind Sirius. James cast Levicorpus on Artemis, preventing her from getting away. She fought with her skirt as it succumbed to gravity.
“Nice knickers, Monroe.”
Artemis looked around and saw James and Sirius standing in front of her. Neither of them were smiling. Sirius spoke again. “Muffliato. There, now we won’t be interrupted.”
And so the three Marauders had a ‘chat’ with Artemis, but they spoke vaguely enough that Artemis, with her recent memories erased, could not understand.
Artemis and Sirius were just exchanging little threats with each other when the door behind Artemis exploded, throwing pieces of splintered wood all over the room. Sirius’s eyes widened. “Moony,” he whispered, his anger towards Artemis seeming to disappear.
Remus stood in the doorway, clutching the doorframe with pale fingers. His eyes glowed gold as he looked from James to Peter to Sirius to Artemis. Then, “WHAT THE BLOODY HELL IS GOING ON IN HERE?!”
“Moony, we can explain,” Sirius started.
Remus kept his back to Artemis throughout the entire rescue, making sure that Artemis could not see his face, or his eyes. He finally sent Artemis to class, telling her that he would not be making it to any of his lessons that day.
“What do you think you’re doing?!” Sirius yelled at Remus once Artemis was gone. He pointed to the door. “Now do you know what she’s going to tell the school? Not only that you’re a werewolf, but that the rest of us tried to cover up for-”
“Shut up!” Remus yelled, his golden eyes flashing. “You don’t get it! She had Poppy erase her memories of this morning! She doesn’t remember anything before walking out of the Hospital Wing! She doesn’t know what I am, or now why you attacked her!”
PB&J were silent for a moment. James looked to Sirius, then back at Remus. “She had her memories Obliviated?”
Remus nodded, looking back to the door. “I heard the whole thing.” He pointed his wand to the splinters. In a few seconds, they were once again in the form of a sturdy door. “I couldn’t stop her. But-” Remus gasped, clutching his stomach. He fell to his knees.
“Moony!” PB&J rushed to Remus’s side. “You shouldn’t be out of the Hospital Wing in the first place,” James said.
“Knowing you three? I knew you would do something incredibly stupid.” Remus winced as he got back to his feet. “Help me back. I’ll finish cursing the living daylights out of you sods later.”
“But what about October?” I asked. “And all the other months? What happened then-”
“Just watch.” Remus waved his wand again, making the scene change back to the hall outside of the Hospital Wing.
Saturday, October 9
Two people staggered towards the Hospital Wing. One of them was Madam Pomfrey. She was supporting Remus, whose legs looked ready to collapse under him. Pomfrey kept whispering for him to keep moving, that he was too big for her to carry anymore, that he was doing just fine this morning.
Just before Pomfrey and Remus stumbled into the Hospital Wing, one student turned the corner and looked at the two. Artemis was quite a distance away, but she approached quickly and quietly.
Artemis arrived in the Hospital Wing just as Pomfrey retreated into her office to retrieve her potions. Artemis dropped her book bag by the door and jogged the distance to Pomfrey’s office.
“Madam Pomfrey, what’s wrong? Who-?” She stopped when she saw the person collapsed on the bed. Remus’s head was drooped backwards onto the pillow. When it moved, it left behind a bright red stain on the pillowcase. “Remus!”
Pomfrey emerged from her office, eyes wide. “Artemis, what are you doing here this early on a Saturday? Never mind. Don’t just stand there. I still need some more potions.” She listed off five and Artemis dashed to the office, returning with the ones requested. They were particularly strong regenerative potions.
“Madam Pomfrey, what happened?” Artemis asked, fetching a bowl and pouring one of the potions inside.
“Take a cloth and start applying the potion to his arms.”
“What happened to Remus?” she repeated, though still following directions.
Madam Pomfrey pressed her lips together. Her gaze turned to the window above Remus’s bed, but she didn’t seem to be looking at anything in particular. After a long while, she answered slowly, “He got these wounds from last night.”
“What do you mean last night?” Artemis pressed. “Did someone curse his bed hangings or something?”
Madam Pomfrey smiled sadly. “No, it wasn’t cursed bed hangings. Now please, attend to his arms.”
“Why don’t you use Episkey? Why bother with a potion?”
“Why don’t you try it?”
Artemis looked over at the witch for a moment, then slowly pulled out her wand. She took aim at a scratch going across the top of Remus’s hand. “Episkey.” She nearly dropped her wand when nothing happened.
“He is injured, right?” she asked. “I didn’t lose my powers, right?”
“No, it’s Remus’s injuries,” Madam Pomfrey said. “They’re tricky to heal. Keep working.”
“Why would he be injured like this?” Artemis whispered. But Madam Pomfrey ignored her, instead deciding to take care of the wound on his head, muttering under her breath as she did.
“I should tell him not to get a haircut anytime soon,” Madam Pomfrey muttered. “Shouldn’t look too unusual with half the male population starting to look like girls anyway.”
Artemis examined Remus’s limp arm in her search for more injuries. She soon focused on the faint white scars dotting his arm, forming a semi-circle across his skin.
“I’ve seen these before,” Artemis whispered, though not loud enough for Pomfrey to hear. She placed her fingers over one of the scars. “I’ve healed this before,” she continued. She looked up to Remus’s face, which was criss-crossed with smaller scratches. She chewed her bottom lip for a moment.
“Werewolf,” she whispered.
Madam Pomfrey stopped tending to Remus’s chest. She locked eyes with Artemis for a second, then nodded. “Yes. Remus is a werewolf.”
Artemis cursed under her breath. “Then how come I didn’t know before? This is the second full moon of the year. Was tonight particularly bad?”
“No, actually, this is good for Remus,” she said. She took a deep breath. “And you figured it out last month as well. You helped me then too.”
Artemis blinked “I just figured this out two minutes ago. How could I-?”
“You asked me to erase your memory,” Madam Pomfrey said. “You told me you didn’t want to know unless Remus trusted you enough to tell you himself.”
Artemis opened her mouth to respond, then closed it to think. She remained silent for a few minutes. “He doesn’t want me to know then,” she finally said. She looked up at Madam Pomfrey. “Madam Pomfrey, will you, I mean, could you please do the same thing? Could you please Obliviate my memories of this morning again? Remus didn’t tell me this. I can understand. I like the friendship we have now.”
“Artemis, I’ve had this discussion with you before-”
“Then you’ll remember, because I can’t, that I evidently won. Besides, with less people knowing a secret, the safer it’ll be.”
Madam Pomfrey sighed. “When Remus is patched up then, alright? You can help me with him until then.”
Artemis nodded. They worked for a few hours. No one else entered the Hospital Wing. Finally, it was time for Artemis to leave for lunch.
“Are you sure-?” Pomfrey asked again.
“Just do it. Please,” Artemis whispered. Her book bag was once again on her shoulder as she stood waiting. “And thank you. For letting me help Remus while letting him keep his secret.”
The nurse sighed. “Artemis, I hope this doesn’t become a habit for us.”
Artemis glanced over to Remus’s bed. Her eyes widened a little when Remus’s right hand twitched. It twitched again, more this time. Remus was regaining consciousness.
Artemis’s eyes returned to their normal size as she stared blankly in front of her.
“I was trying to wake myself up again,” Remus said. Once again, Pensieve-Pomfrey guided Pensieve-Artemis to the Hospital Wing doors and told her to enjoy the rest of the Saturday.
“I woke up wandering the lower levels of the castle,” I remembered, turning my attention to the real Remus beside me. “Why didn’t I remember being at the Hospital Wing doors like I did the first time?”
Remus shrugged a shoulder. “Pomfrey probably didn’t want you to get suspicious that your memories were linked to the Hospital Wing. She wouldn’t be fulfilling you wishes if she let you figure it out.”
“Great, so now I have to apologize to her and thank her for the same thing,” I said. I sighed as the scene set up for the next full moon.
Sunday, November 7
“You should be fine, Remus,” Pomfrey said. Remus was again unconscious, covered in new scratches and injuries. She patted the back of his hand and retreated to her office, indubitable to retrieve her potions.
The Hospital Wing doors burst open, then closed quickly. Artemis huffed a bit, the back of her robes covered in clumps of clay. “Peeves,” she sighed, shaking her head. “What a wonderful Sunday, nearly getting a new hairdo from Peeves or my first detention from Filch.” She straightened her robes and strode towards the end of the hall, taking little notice of the curtains around the last bed. “Morning, Madam Pomfrey! I know I don’t normally show up this early, but Peeves was giving a suit of armor a Mohawk and thought I should-” She stopped when she glanced at the occupant of the last bed. “Remus!” She stopped at the side of his bed, looking at every bleeding part of his body. “Remus, can you hear me?!”
“Artemis?” Madam Pomfrey came out of her office with a bowl filled with some kind of potion. She frowned at seeing her student. “I thought you came here after lunch.”
“I do, but Peeves caught me on my way to breakfast. But that’s not important anymore. What’s wrong with Remus?”
Madam Pomfrey sighed. “I was hoping to move him when you’d get here. Or send you a letter telling you not to come. This is the second time you’ve come earlier than expected on a weekend. It’s almost like you’ve been drawn here.”
“What are you talking about? Is Remus going to be okay?”
“He will be. Now take this cloth and start applying the potion to his arms. It won’t hurt him, but the usual healing charms I’ve taught you have almost no effect to Remus’s wounds.”
Artemis took the cloth. She looked like she wanted to demand answers, but her desire to help Remus kept her silent. As she tended his right arm, she noticed three long, deep claw marks right along his forearm. She traced the scratches with her left hand, just a centimeter above the skin. She traced over the scratched skin again. Her lips parted slightly, but no words came out. Her eyes stayed attuned to the three marks, as if trying to think of how Remus could get such an injury.
“I should learn to contact you the night before,” Madam Pomfrey continued. Her wand was over his chest as she muttered various spells under her breath. She pressed two fingers against his chest and waited. Satisfied, she pointed her wand over a different spot along his side. “Then things wouldn’t happen this way.”
“What do you mean? I don’t remember-”
“Of course you don’t remember, Artemis. On your request, I’ve been erasing the memories of mornings similar to this one.”
“Haven’t you figured it out yet?” Madam Pomfrey then turned her attention back into muttering numerous spells to Remus.
Artemis looked away, thinking. Her face showed confusion, puzzlement. Then her eyes widened, thoughts finally falling into place. When she turned back to face Pomfrey, she seemed reluctant to say what was at the tip of her tongue.
“Remus is a werewolf?” Artemis’s green eyes seemed to beg for a negative reply.
But Madam Pomfrey just nodded as she continued to work.
“Remus is a werewolf,” she repeated, softer. The claw marks on Remus’s arm was just a few faint lines now. “And I found out on the first full moon I’ve been coming here. I found out, then I didn’t want Remus to worry about me revealing his secret. So I asked for you to Obliviate my memories. How right am I?”
“Dead on,” she nodded.
And again, like in previous months, Artemis helped Madam Pomfrey tend to Remus’s wounds until they knew he would be just fine. Just as they were finishing up, Artemis’s stomach let out a loud growl.
“I’ll send you to the kitchens to have breakfast,” Pomfrey said. “I wish you wouldn’t do this to yourself.”
“When he’s ready, he’ll tell me,” Artemis said confidently.
“Alright then,” Remus said, shuffling on his feet. “Artemis, how much of our first fight do you remember? When we first broke up in December that is.”
I shrugged. “The last I remembered was telling you to shut up. Then I was in the Hospital Wing.”
Remus sighed. “The next memories won’t make much sense unless you see how that first fight ended.” Remus rose his wand. Paused. Looked down at me. Looked away. And waved his wand to make our surroundings change.
Friday, December 3
“SHUT UP!” Artemis screamed at the top of her lungs. “JUST SHUT UP! I DON’T WANT ANYTHING TO DO WITH YOU! YOU DON’T KNOW. . . MERLIN, JUST LEAVE ME ALONE!”
Remus jumped in as Artemis paused to take a breath. “You want to know why I broke up with you? Fine. I-”
“I DON’T CARE ANYMORE! LUPIN, I HATE YOU!”
Remus stopped trying to speak, though his mouth continued to open and close like a fish out of water. The room finished echoing the last shout before Remus found his voice. “What?”
“You heard me,” Artemis hissed. Her eyes had turned a cold, dark green as she glared up at her ex-boyfriend. “So would you finally just leave me alone?” She walked past Remus, charmed the door open, and walked out. The door closed softly behind her.
Remus stood in the middle of the room, motionless, for five minutes. Just watching the door. Finally, he turned away from the door and kicked a nearby desk, making it jump twenty centimeters. “Curse you, Moony!” he hissed, his eyes moist. “You ruin everything!”
My jaw fell slack, processing the last thing I had said before leaving the classroom. I turned to the real Remus beside me. “Remus, I didn’t mean to say that! I just hated what you did to me! I swear! That’s what I was planning to say!”
“There’s more,” Remus said. His face was void of emotion. He didn’t turn to look at me. “I’ll, um, take us to when you found out my secret after the December full moon.”
Tuesday, December 7
The scene returned to the Hospital Wing. The doors opened as Artemis shuffled in, walking slowly and apparently lost in thought. Her expression changed to surprise and fear when she rounded the corner of the curtains surrounding the last bed.
“Remus!” Half of his head was matted in blood and sweat. His arms were torn open, revealing bruised muscles. And his chest. It was completely covered in fresh blood. Beneath the blood, some parts of his white ribs laid exposed.
Madam Pomfrey was tending to the young wizard. This has to be the worst condition he had been in so far. She looked up from Remus and said sharply, “Don’t just stand there, help me! Take that potion over there and apply it to his chest here.”
“What happened?” Artemis demanded, doing as she was told.
“I can’t explain right now! If we don’t patch him up right now, Remus will die!”
Artemis paled. She began working with the directed potion, doing all the she was told. And slowly in combination with Pomfrey’s incantations, Remus’s skin began to regenerate around his exposed ribs.
“Is Remus going to be okay?” Artemis asked a half hour later. Remus’s ribs were healed, but the rest of his chest was still a torn-up mess.
“I hope so,” Pomfrey said.
“Was he attacked last night? Who attacked him? Was there an accident? Does anyone know what did this to him? You don’t think that-”
“Artemis, slow down!” Pomfrey said, pausing in her efforts to heal a cracked skull. “No one attacked him. These wounds are self-inflicted.”
“What?! No way! Remus would never-”
“Remus wasn’t himself when this happened to him,” Pomfrey said. “Now please, would you get on with it?”
It only took two minutes of pondering on Artemis’s part to deduce that Remus was a werewolf. She seemed certain when she told Pomfrey, only waiting for the inevitable confirmation. When she got her answer, she just shook her head. She continued to work, but still pale.
“Artemis, dear, are you all right?” Pomfrey asked after ten minutes of silence. Remus’s head looked better (aside from all the residual blood around the area). Pomfrey placed a hand on Artemis’s shoulder. “Maybe you should get going to class. Don’t you have Potions in fifteen minutes?”
Artemis continued to treat Remus’s wounds. “I’m staying here,” she said flatly. “Let Slughorn give me detentions if he wants. Remus is more important than a stupid reputation.”
Pomfrey nodded solemnly. She approved the work Artemis had done when healing Remus’s chest and directed her to clean up the blood around his head. A normal spell would work with the blood now that the wound was closed.
“You stayed there all day,” Remus said, watching the witches work on his Pensieve-self.
“But why were you in such a bad shape?” I asked. “I mean, you almost died! You could have been crippled for life! Or you might have suffered from-!”
“Artemis, I’m fine now, see?” Remus said, taking hold of my hand and giving it a firm squeeze. His eyes finally met mine. “I didn’t die.”
“Why do you think? The girl I deeply cared for said she hated me. The werewolf and I are linked. It could sense that I was upset about losing you. It didn’t help that your scent was all over the Shrieking Shack, agitating the werewolf even further.”
“Oh, right, our first date in Hogsmeade. Sorry. Ouch, that sounded lame.”
Remus’s lips twitched upwards momentarily. “There’s still more to this full moon. It’s the reason why I showed you what happened during our first fight.”
That evening, Remus made his first signs of life (besides breathing that is). He groaned, subconsciously reaching for the throat that had been nearly scratched raw hours before. His eyes squinted as he tried to open them. After three or four attempts, they finally opened up, reflecting not his typical amber eyes but rather golden irises. They gazed at the ceiling for about a minute.
And then he looked to his left, where Artemis sat on a chair. Those golden eyes widened in surprise and he tried to sit himself up. He winced at the motion and resigned himself to his current placement. But his eyes still looked afraid.
“Artemis,” Remus rasped, his voice barely above a hoarse whisper. “What are you doing here?”
“I know all about you, Remus Lupin,” Artemis said.
Remus looked down. “So you know my condition,” he said, though it still sounded like a whisper.
“That you’re a werewolf? Yeah.”
Remus sighed and closed his eyes tight. “So now you understand why I had to break up with you. Why we can’t be together anymore.”
“That part still eludes me.”
Remus’s eyes shot open and he turned his head to look up at her. “What’s so hard to understand? I’m a werewolf! I can’t get involved with anyone, no matter how much I might like her.”
“Then why date people in the first place?” Artemis asked, crossing my arms. Her gaze remained on Remus, silently refusing to accept a simple answer from him.
“It helps me feel normal, just for a bit,” Remus said. “I know, it’s a rotten excuse, but it’s the truth.”
“So you really did like those other girls a lot but decided to break up with them for their own good.”
“Er, not really. I meant what I’ve said before. There really wasn’t any energy going on between any of us, so I would break it off with them all before the full moon.”
“And so there was nothing special between the two of us either, so you did the same with me.”
“Then why’d you break up with me?”
“Because I’m a werewolf! A monster!”
“Not good enough.”
Remus just looked at Artemis, obviously confused. When he looked away, he tried to push himself off his back so he could sit up. He winced in the effort. Artemis twitched once but didn‘t help ease his pain.
“Look, I’m sorry I never told you earlier,” Remus said. “I wanted to, but-”
“You were afraid I’d look at you differently?” she asked. She pulled her arms in tighter over her chest. “Or would you just think I was looking at you differently? Because frankly, I’m still looking at the jerk that broke my heart.”
“You don’t understand-”
“No, you don’t understand,” she snapped. “I would have been fine with you saying something like ‘Let’s go to Hogsmeade. Oh, by the way, I’m a werewolf. Now, let’s get some butterbeer.’ See, not that hard. But making me walk in here with you dying on a hospital bed? Seeing you all cut up, bruised, bleeding, fighting for your life. . . That’s not the way to tell someone you have a medical condition. It nearly killed me inside, seeing you like that this morning. Merlin, even the memory hurts.”
“I can’t change the facts of what I am,” Remus said. “That’s why, I think, well, it would be best if we’re, you know, just friends again.” Remus looked down and studied the sheets, which had been changed after Pomfrey stopped the bleeding several hours ago.
“No.” Artemis uncrossed her arms and stood up. “If I remember everything that’s happened today, you will always look at me differently, even if I do nothing differently myself.” She looked back to Madam Pomfrey’s office.
Remus shook his head. He swung his legs over the side of the bed. “I know what you’ve been doing for me, and I’m immensely grateful for your help, but I don’t want this. I don’t like you getting your memories erased because you think I would-”
“No, I know you would see me differently,” Artemis cut him off. “Now, when you’re out of here, you can choose to either tell me why I have these memory gaps or you can just treat me like you always have. It’s up to you.” Artemis turned to get Pomfrey.
“No!” Remus grabbed hold of Artemis’s left wrist before she’d even had a chance to turn away. “I won’t let you. Just walk out of here, go to your dorm or the library or wherever, and just keep these memories.”
Artemis struggled, her brows furrowing as she indubitably thought of a way to escape Remus’s grasp.
“I don’t care what you think,” she finally said. “Let me go!”
“Why do you want so much to erase these memories?”
Artemis gave a final tug, but she remained in Remus’s hold. Her eyes darted to Pomfrey’s office, but the Healer was nowhere to be seen.
“You want to know why?” Artemis asked. She reached behind her with her free hand, taking her wand out of her robes. “Because I love you, that’s why.”
Remus’s golden eyes widened. His grip loosened on her wrist slightly. “You- what?”
But Artemis didn’t answer. Instead, she raised her wand and put the end against her right temple.
Remus’s eyes went from surprise to horror. “No, don’t-”
“Too late. Obliviate!”
Artemis’s eyes went blank. She passed out. Fell forward.
Remus caught her. And he sobbed. “NO, ARTEMIS!”
“Uh . . .” I said, uncertain how to respond to that. The five-day memory gap was from me Obliviating my own memories? And I said that I loved Remus? I didn’t remember saying anything like that to him. I’ve never thought that way about anyone. But I certainly didn’t mean ‘love’ in the platonic sense.
“Yeah,” Remus nodded. He scratched behind his ear. “That was pretty intense.”
“Intense doesn’t even describe it,” I said. “I mean, I-”
“You don’t have to say anything now,” Remus said. “I can show you the February full moon-”
“What about January?”
“You weren’t eating that month, remember? It was after. . .” His voice trailed off.
After Ken and Jake died. Well, it’s good to know that I wasn’t lied to that month. And that my brain remained Obliviate-free that month.
“I get it,” I nodded.
“I planned to tell you my secret during Christmas Break,” Remus said. “But, when you lost your friends, I didn’t want to-” Remus sighed. “It’s so hard to talk to you about all this.”
“Then just show me.”
Friday, February 4
Madam Pomfrey eased a weakened and unconscious Remus into the last bed in the wing. “There there,” she cooed,” you’ll be alright.” She patted the back of his hand, then stood up to draw the curtains around the bed. She went into her office to fetch the necessary potions.
Almost on cue, the Hospital Wing doors opened. “Morning, Madam Pomfrey,” Artemis called out, waking towards Pomfrey’s office. She tilted her head when she noticed the curtain around the last bed.
Artemis stopped. Frowned at the white curtains. Looked at it as if experiencing déjà vu.
“Artemis?” Madam Pomfrey came out of her office as Artemis neared the corner of the curtains. Just two more steps and she would be around the corner. Pomfrey’s eyes widened as the girl took the last few steps. “Artemis, you don’t want to-”
It was too late. Artemis saw who was laying on the bed. Her jaw dropped slowly, taking in the sight of Remus, bloodied, bruised, and cut upon the bed.
“Remus!” Artemis ran to his side, pulling out her wand. She kept shaking her head back and forth. “Remus! Episkey! Come on, Remus, be okay! Episkey!” But not even the smallest scratches showed any signs of healing.
“Artemis!” Pomfrey pulled at her shoulder, making her turn to face the Healer. And face away from Remus. “You want to help, then take a cloth and apply this potion to his injuries!”
“If you help me now, he might be on his feet again for the weekend.” Pomfrey’s gaze never wavered from Artemis’s. “You want to be a Healer? Then heal him!”
Artemis took the bowl with some sort of potion and the cloth. She soaked the cloth, then applied the potion to Remus’s arms. Pomfrey put her attention to the side of Remus’s head, on the other side of the bed.
Artemis did as she was told, but all the while she kept shaking her head back and forth, back and forth.
“Artemis?” Pomfrey shook Artemis out of her thoughts. Pomfrey’s voice was calm, gentle. “Artemis, dear, his arm is quite alright now. Do you think you could turn your attention to his other arm over here?”
Artemis looked down. “Sorry,” I muttered. She ran her left hand through her hair. It was shaking. “I don’t understand. What happened to Remus? Why is he a mess like this? How could this happen? We’re at Hogwarts. We should be safe here.”
“You students are safe,” Pomfrey assured me. “But, well, Remus is a special case.”
Artemis rounded the bed and continued with applying the potion to his arms. Pomfrey went back to casting spells over his head. For just a moment, part of his white skull became visible.
“He’s not going to have brain damage, is he?!” Artemis asked. “Like when I found out I was missing five days last December-”
“No, Remus won’t have any memory gaps,” Pomfrey said. “Those would be your specialty.” She finished mending the skin over his head, then looked over at Artemis. “Have you figured out why he’s here yet?”
“You seem to catch on pretty quick when the evidence is laying right in front of you. Excuse me.” Pomfrey moved a bit to gain access to Remus’s chest.
Artemis just stood motionless, watching her boyfriend take slow but shallow breaths, each one being a chore.
“Artemis?” Pomfrey now put both hands on Artemis’s shoulders and led her to a chair by her office. “Dear, maybe you should sit down.”
“How could this happen?” Artemis whispered. She looked around Pomfrey to the bed, where Remus still laid unconscious. “It doesn’t make sense.”
“Doesn’t it?” Pomfrey looked back to a clock hanging over the double doors out. “You still have nearly an hour until your first class. Maybe-”
“I’m not leaving until I know what’s happened,” Artemis said. “Until I know who attacked him and what-” She paused. “Oh my god.” She buried her head into her hands as she began to tremble slightly. “Oh my god, oh my god,” she kept repeating. “Remus is a werewolf.”
Pomfrey pulled up another seat next to Artemis. “Artemis, Remus is okay. He’s fine. Every month, well, you’ve been helping to heal him of his injuries.”
“Then why do I have these memory gaps at the full moon?”
“You asked me to erase your memories of mornings like these,” Pomfrey said softly. She put her arm over Artemis’s shoulders, pulling her closer. “You keep finding out that Remus is a werewolf. But you never wanted to invade on his privacy.”
“But I’m his girlfriend,” Artemis said. “Couldn’t he have trusted me? He should have told me. I don’t want to discover secrets. They should be told in good faith.” She moved her hands from her temples to her eyes, trying to prevent herself from crying.
“But Remus does trust you,” Pomfrey said. “He knows that you’ve been helping to heal him. That you always ask for your memories to be erased after each morning.”
But Artemis shook her head. “No, he doesn’t trust me. If he did, he would have told me his secret. Merlin, I can’t handle this! I’m just finally getting myself back in order after losing two of my friends! Merlin, first it was Ken and Jake’s deaths, now I find out my boyfriend is a werewolf! Finding out, after he’s been ripped apart like this! I can’t take it!” She removed her palms from her eyes. “Please, Madam Pomfrey. I don’t want this. Any of it. Please, Obliviate my memories again. I can’t know about this!”
Madam Pomfrey sighed. “I don’t want to-”
“Okay.” Madam Pomfrey stood up. “You’re just making this harder for yourself in the end.”
“I’ll find out when Remus trusts me,” Artemis said, also standing. “Please.”
Pomfrey took out her wand. “I’m sorry, dear. You don’t know how much it hurts me to keep doing this for you. Obliviate.”
Saturday, March 5
“For the record,” Artemis called out loudly, entering the Hospital Wing, “little sleep mixed with a visit from a water-balloon-throwing Peeves does not make for a good morning.” Artemis bunched up a patch of her robes and wrung out the water onto the floor. “Just because it’s raining outside doesn’t mean Peeves should make it rain inside.” Artemis shuffled over to Madam Pomfrey, half-hidden behind the white curtain. “Whoever introduced Peeves to water balloons should be- cursed.” Her eyes widened when she saw Remus laying on the bed.
“You did and said pretty much the same thing as you did last month,” Remus explained.
“At least Peeves explains why my robes were soaked,” I hummed. “I thought I had been outside.”
Remus shook his head. “I came across a few dozen soaked students. In your trance-like state after the Obliviate, I think you forgot that you could dry your robes with a wave of your wand.”
“It looks like I forgot to do that anyway,” I said.
“Next is the last memory,” Remus said. “It’s from James, and I didn’t want you to leave without seeing this one.” Remus gave a wave of his wand one last time.
Tuesday, April 5
“If I’m not missing memories, I’m missing friends,” Artemis muttered, walking into the Hospital Wing. “Breakfast is so boring without them.”
Artemis stopped walking to scan the beds. She blinked, taking in the scene: three beds were occupied by sixth year blokes- two of them Gryffindor and one Slytherin.
Madam Pomfrey was just helping Remus, unconscious and bloodied up, drink down a potion of some kind. She looked up at Artemis and said, “I’ve got Remus taken care of. You take care of the other two.”
Artemis turned her attention to the other two beds, occupied by Severus Snape and James Potter. Neither of them were as bad as Remus, but they both had their share of scrapes and scratches on their heads, hands, and arms.
“What happened?” Artemis asked, standing closest to Snape’s bed. He was the worse off of the pair. He had a broken leg. Artemis began treatment. “Was there an attack?”
Pomfrey pressed her lips together slightly. “You could say that. The situation is being taken care of in the Headmaster’s office right now, actually. It’s our job to heal these boys first, remember?”
Artemis nodded and patched Snape up quickly, though he seemed to be out cold. He didn’t react when Artemis verified that he was physically fine.
James, on the other hand, was mostly covered in dirt rather than blood. The small scratches Artemis treated could have been healed with a Muggle bandage.
“What’s wrong with Remus?” Artemis asked once she was finished. “Why aren’t you done with him yet?”
“Here, take this potion,” Pomfrey said. “His fingers are especially bad this time. Probably trying to claw his way out of that dreadful shack.”
“What the bloody hell are you talking about?!” Artemis demanded, her eyes glaring intensely up at Pomfrey. She then blinked, realizing who she just yelled at. “Uh, I mean, er-”
“It’s quite alright,” Pomfrey said softly. She stopped taking care of Remus’s chest, mostly around the base of his lungs, and looked her straight in the eye. “I myself sometimes forget that you don’t remember what you do every month.”
“Remus is a werewolf.”
The witches turned back to look at James. He was now sitting up, facing Remus’s bed and therefore the Healers. “You heard me,” James said. “Remus is a werewolf. You know, human by day, wolf by full moonlight.”
“There’s where the full moons connected,” Artemis muttered, closing her eyes briefly. She reopened her eyes and looked back down at Remus. “Why didn’t he tell me?”
“Artemis,” Pomfrey said, “I think you might want to have a word with your friend. I can take care of Remus from here, dear.”
Artemis just nodded and went back to James’s bed. She sat down. Waited.
James just continued to look at her.
“Well? And don’t say ‘deep hole in the ground.’ That’s my line.”
“What do you want to know?” James asked.
“For starters, how long has Remus been a werewolf? Do you know?”
James nodded. “From what he’s told us, he’s been one for about ten years now.”
Artemis bowed her head. She let out a slow sigh. “So I guess he just didn’t trust me with his secret, huh?”
“What?! No, Artemis, he totally trusts you! He’s been trying to build up the courage to tell you about this lycanthropy for days, weeks, months! But he doesn’t know how you’ll react. I mean, he knows how you’ll react when you see him after the full moon, but not be-”
“Hold on. This is the first time I’m learning-”
“No, this is the-” James paused, thinking. “The seventh time. January doesn’t count. You’ve helped heal him six times before. And from what Remus has told us, you’ve asked Pomfrey to erase your memories of these mornings. You apparently don’t like learning of people’s secrets in this fashion.”
“And that explains the memory gaps,” Artemis said. She looked up at James. “So how do you know he’s a werewolf?”
“Kind of hard not to notice one of your roommates leave your dorm once a month. We, the other Marauders I mean, figured it out first year and confronted him about it.”
“And? What happened?”
James snickered. “It’s funny now, since it’s been years. But Remus was so afraid that we’d reject him, he ran away from our dorm. It took us two weeks of searching for us to find him in the Room of Requirement.”
“Room of Requirement? What’s that? Something similar to the Come and Go Room?”
“Same thing. It took us hours to convince him that we weren’t going to chase him out of Hogwarts because of some curse he couldn’t control. The three of us promised never to reveal his secret to anyone.”
“Uh, well, let’s just say that with his irritability at this time of month, he probably didn’t trust himself not to say or do something stupid to scare you off. After all, he was planning on telling you anyway. But he’s afraid of losing you. Or something like that.”
Artemis looked back over to Remus. Pomfrey was just tending to his bloodied and nail-less fingers. “I hate seeing him like this,” Artemis muttered.
James reached forward and patted her on the back. “From everything he’s told us, you’ve never rejected him just because of his condition. That has to be a mark in your favor.”
“But not enough for him to get up the nerve to tell me face to face? He’s made me figure it out six times before this? And then I don’t like learning his secret like this, so I have my memories erased? Is that it?”
She glanced to the other bed. “Why is Snape here then? And what about you? If you two have been really fighting Muggle-style, Lily will have both of your heads-”
James’s smile faded, replaced by a serious frown. “It doesn’t matter.”
“Yes it does. I want to know.”
James sighed. “It was stupid. Remember how Sirius left dinner early last night?”
“Well, he evidently went looking for this git. Convinced Snape here that if he could stop the Whomping Willow from bashing out his slime-for-brains, he’d learn a secret that no one else in the school knew.”
“Whomping Willow? But that passageway leads to the Shrieking Shack. The ghost that haunts there-”
James shook his head. “Not a ghost. Moony when he’s transformed.”
Artemis’s eyes widened. “But werewolves attack humans! That’s why there are still werewolves in the world! It’s not like they have werewolf cubs. I think.”
James nodded. “I’m guessing Sirius wasn’t thinking. Certainly don’t want my rival to become a werewolf. Nor do I want one of my best mates guilty of killing anyone. I dread telling Remus what he’s been up to as Moony.”
“Remus as Moony? Oh. Moon, Moony, his nickname. Would never have caught it.”
“Sirius’s idea. Most people think of another thing.” James had started laughing, but he stopped and frowned. “Merlin, I still can’t believe Sirius didn’t think of the consequences. He’ll be lucky if Dumbledore doesn’t expel him!”
From then, the two sat still. Pomfrey continued treating Remus. The seconds ticked by. Minutes.
“I’m not going to remember any of this later, am I?” Artemis finally asked James.
James sighed. “Seeing as the last time you Obliviated your own memories you lost five days, my money’s on no. You won’t remember this.”
“You understand, don’t you?” Artemis asked. “Why I don’t want to find this out for myself? I don’t like ‘discovering’ secrets. Sharing secrets is what friends are supposed to do.”
James nodded. “I completely understand, Artemis. Merlin forbid, if it was Lily in here, hiding some large secret from me, I think I’d do something similar to you.”
“So, when you see me later. . .”
“We never had this conversation,” James nodded. “Don’t worry, I get it. You’d do anything for the one you love.”
Artemis’s lips parted slightly, but she didn’t push the subject.
Artemis got off the bed and offered to help Pomfrey. She still had a few minutes before Potions.
“Artemis, please reconsider,” Pomfrey said. “You don’t have to do this-”
“Please, Madam Pomfrey.”
She sighed. “Just go straight to class once I’m done. Obliviate.”
As Pensieve-Artemis once again seemed to go into her memory-charm trance, I felt a strange force pull me away from the scene. Up, up and out of the memories.
A/N: Too long? Sorry, couldn’t be shorter.
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