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Chapter 10 : A Long Lonely Night
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AN: Harry potter and friends belong solely to JK Rowling, a fact I want to cry about.
Chapter Ten A Long Lonely Night
Night had fallen fully over the school and grounds of Hogwarts. The glowing moon casting a silver light over the stone castle and its undulating well manicured grounds. The students were supposedly all safely tucked up in bed, and all bar one of the professors had, with relieved sighs, returned to their rooms to enjoy a nightcap and an early relaxing evening. However, out in the grounds, in the wilds on the edge of the Forbidden Forest three students were rapidly becoming boisterous.
In the hidden clearing Remus, Severus and Sirius had decided; after their first shared bottle of the bottles Remus had stashed in his bag; to spend the night under the stars.
Remus was back on his tree branch, resting lightly on his haunches and grinning wolfishly down at the two raven haired Adonis like males on the grassy floor beneath him. The alcohol unlocking his wild streak that he kept carefully hidden in his human form. Snatches of an ancient bawdy drinking song slipped from between his lips, the timbre of his voice causing the rumbling to be unheard by his companions. His normally neat auburn touched hair curled gently at the nape of his neck ruffling in the warm autumn breeze, his amber eyes glowed in his shadowed face, and as he sung glimpses of brilliant white teeth appeared unnaturally sharp in the moonlight. His shirt had been discarded and still lay on the ground beside his rucksack and his deeply tanned skin glowed where the moonlight filtering through the boughs of the tree touched it. His slender, muscled well-knit frame staying easily on his perilous perch despite having consumed the better of a bottle and a half of hard liquor.
Sirius was lying on his back, head pooled on his arms gazing at the stars, the pale light reflected in the black depths of his eyes. The bare, pale skin of his face, forearms and throat seemed to shimmer in the gentle silver light. His black hair splayed out around him in a dark parody of a halo, caressing the grass as the gentle breeze shifted its ebony length. The alcohol had caused in him a giggly state, in stark contrast to his normally hard-earned reputation of a brooding, mysterious man. Every so often his full mouth would turn up in a wicked grin in the direction of his friend in the ancient tree and the Slytherin come Maurder across from him.
Severus was sitting regally on the flat rock at the side of the clearing, in full moonlight. His white skin, pitch hair and jet black eyes, along the taunt muscles visible on his forearms and (courtesy of his shirt being half unbuttoned) bare chest, and the length of his limbs creating the image of an immortal come to rest. In one hand he held a sheaf of parchments and held loosely in the other a half-empty bottle of amber liquor. He indolently eyed the other boys of the clearing, whilst whistling an almost haunting melody.
Across the grounds, on a hidden embankment overlooking a magnificent lake, in which the stars and the moon reflected with starling clarity, lay two other students. The blond boy’s head cushioned on the well-muscled, bare chest of a tussled dark haired boy, his pale hand splayed across the warm skin under it. He tilted his head to better hear the song falling from the other’s lips, and the white golden strands of his hair whispered softly and glinted with the moonlight. His ice blue-silver eyes were closed, and an expression of contentment, satisfaction and happiness lay gently on his features. An almost unnoticeable shiver and a sprinkling of goose bumps arose on his bare skin when a callused, Quidditch worn finger gently traced down his arm.
His pillow had his deep grey eyes open and as he had rested his head on his left arm before the golden head had rested on his bare chest, his grey eyes gazed softly down at the relaxed ice-prince Slytherin. Their depths flickered with tenderness unheard of in the stubborn golden boy of Gryffindor. A feeling of deep-seated contentment had settled over the Gryffindor and he found himself softly singing an old wizard’s love ballad. He felt the shift of his companion and ran a soothing finger over the arm his free hand had been resting on. The fingers on his chest flexed minutely and he repressed a shiver of lust not wanting to spoil the moment.
The two had reached an understanding earlier in the day and had agreed to face problems together, as they came and deal with the big lot of stupid coming from a never-ending source of idiocy they would face with maturity and calmness. Both boys knew they would face opposition from not only the students, but probably most of the teachers (bar one when she knew they were serious) and definitely their parents. James chuckled as he remembered trying to convince Lucius that his parents were nothing compared to the Potters. They had finally agreed that they would need back up to tell both sets of parents and to maturely delay informing said parents for as long as physically possible.
A shiver ran through Lucius’ now sleeping frame and James grabbed the nearest robe and pulled it tenderly over his bare back and chest. Tuning into a more comfortable position, he drew the Slytherin boy tightly to him and followed him quickly into the land of dreams.
In an undecorated, sparsely furnished room a female of unknown age sat on the cold flag floor before a roaring fire. She was dressed in skin-tight caramel buckskin. The colour of the pants, boots and jerkin drawing in the light of the flames to add to its warmth. Her unblemished skin was still unwrinkled and despite her daily occupation had gained an even golden tan. Her waist length, brown-black hair hung loose, down her back, the firelight glinting auburn where a strand had fallen unnoticed over her shoulder. Her figure was neat, but should she have risen an observer would have noticed her startling height and well knitted muscular shoulders. As she shifted into a slightly more comfortable position, muscles rippled down her relaxed arms, toned stomach and crossed legs. The light of the flames cast her face into relief. It was a well-structured face, with delicate cheekbones, smooth brow and a well-proportioned mouth. Across her knees lay a long blade. The two handed sword was still sheathed, and the dark red almost black leather seemed to absorb the firelight. Like the female it seemed a simple weapon at first glance, but with closer observation it would appear as a work of art. The blade itself was a well sprung steel, light but strong, and down its length were emblazoned several copper runes. Its sharp edge honed by years of experience and its metal untainted by flaws despite long seasons of heavy use. The hilt and guard were gilded in bronze, worn smooth and burnished over the years, no imagery or adornment had ever graced them, their simple but flowing lines needing no embellishment. The grip was bound tightly with soft, well-worn leather, the colour of which had become undistinguishable over time. The sheath itself was of dark red brown leather, banded simple with bronze. The weapon was a thing of deadly beauty, and the master of the castle would have been horrified by its presence and disappointed with its owner.
A shuddering breath passed through the seated figure and her eyes snapped open, their brilliant mercury depths gazing into the flames. She bowed her head for a fraction of time, an invisible internal struggle taking place within her breast. Her head rose again and she placed her palms flat to the floor and pushed up, the weapon swinging into place beside her left leg. She fastened the leg harness, and with a quick wave of her hand dimmed the roaring flames to an ember. Stepping back into the darkness she swept a quick glance around her quarters before slipping down a hidden corridor.
In his office Albus Dumbledore muttered to himself. His busy eyebrows drawn sharply together in a displeased frown. His normally cheery countenance clouded with anger and concern. Albus like to be in control. He liked to be worshiped, to be the one person everyone listened to, the person everyone came to for advice. He had his plans and people were supposed to play the game his way. At this present moment in time something had been set in motion that did not fall in with his vision, his plans, and his game. It was this, which angered him. His concern came from the knowledge that in this instance and for the first time in decades he had no notion of what had (was?) happening nor of what it meant for his plans. So it was the great wizard Dumbledore brooded in his tower alone and fuming.
In the clearing two of the boys had passed beyond the rollicking stage and were well and truly foxed. They now dozed in liquor induced slumber, leaving the other in his boredom to gaze down at them. Remus was still balanced in the tree, his actions and brain unclouded by the strong, old whisky they had been consuming. Below him Sirius and Severus had at some point in the night drawn closer together and were now wrapped tightly around each other. The Werewolf shook his head in amused tolerance, knowing he could not sleep and that he needed to stand guard. Being this close to the forest held many dangers, and under the moon his protection spells were strong, but the horrors in the night were stronger.
He shifted restlessly on his branch. There was a storm coming, he could sense it with a growing disquiet in the back of his mind. He shook his shaggy hair from his eyes and narrowed them at the trees surrounding him. Carefully and unobtrusively he sniffed the air. He growled gutturally. There was no smell of sulphur, no smell of rain. This was not an elemental storm gathering, whatever was coming was not natural. He forced his shoulders back and focused, his useless human eyes closed to allow his other senses free reign. The were dark whispering deep in the forest, the air was calm and balmy, and his nose picked up wisps of smoke following the trails of unmoving air. He shifted into an attacking stance as his brain worked through the clues he had picked up. The creatures of the forest were restless, like him they could sense something coming to, so far they seemed to be content with staying in their lairs. The air was too calm, too balmy for the time of year Remus decided, by now the nights should be cold and the beginnings of mist and frost should be forming. The smoke was old, overlaid by the damp earth and old wood surrounding him. He examined the smell more deeply. It was wood smoke, but a thicker, heavier more sinister smell was mixed among it. Remus shook his head unable to place the smell in the innocence that lingered in his soul despite his curse.
A prickling at the nape of his neck made him stiffen. He was been watched. Someone had broken through his wards, yet left them intact. He deliberately relaxed his shoulders realising he had recognised the scent briefly. A mixture of Honeysuckle, wood smoke, old books, dark chocolate and ruby port caressed him and he allowed himself a moment. He opened his eyes and the wolf gazed out from behind green flecked amber eyes, changing them slowly to pure liquid gold. He dropped lightly and silently from the tree, before launching at a hidden shadow to his left. Their bodies hit with a muffled thud, and his leap propelled them beyond his wards. As they fell the watcher twisted so she ended astride Remus as they landed. Inhuman eyes battled for a long moment, as dangerous hand fell useless to rest on her waist, his chest. Shapely, yet hard feminine hand smoothed up Remus’ naked chest and he arched to the touch, a purr rolling in his throat. The woman astride him leaned forward, her forehead resting on his, their eyes never breaking contact. Remus dared move and ran a hand up her back to tangle in the dark hair that had fallen as a curtain around them. He ran a worn thumb around the shell of a delicate ear gaining him a gasp. She flexed her fingers, scoring her nails against his chest. He growled and returning his hand to her waist flipped her, so their positions were reversed and he was lying between her legs. He braced his hands either side of her head, feeling the softness of the thick hair that had splayed around her. She ran her hands up to his powerful shoulders. Their lips finally met in an explosive kiss.
It was this kiss that brought them both to their senses. Remus leapt up and back in horror dropping instinctively into a defensive crouch. She pulled her knees to her chest and rested her head there for an instant to steal herself for hurting him. She pushed into a standing position and glared at him. He relaxed his pose slightly at that, though, she noticed, never enough to be taken by surprise.
“I have a warning,” she hissed, “I was supposed to deliver the warning and leave, never get involved, be seen, be heard or be touched.” she paused and looked at the wolf in front of her. “Can you get a warning to Dumbledore?” Remus nodded tersely and she continued, “Good. Tell him the storm is about to break. Tell him the people of Hellavan have finally understood their prophecies. He will know what this means. You will tell him you heard this in a dream. Yes? Good.” she turned and went to leave the clearing, something stopped her and she walked back to the young man, laying a gentle hand on his chest. Pain ran through her when he did not respond, just looked at her with liquid golden eyes. “I will tell you something for you also. There are people other than your friends you can trust in the castle. People other than you who hide their power. I am sorry young one after tonight I hope you will never need see me again.” she whipped from his sight stifling a sob.
It was long after she left when Remus finally unbent, his joints cracking with the movement. Last night he had felt so young, now he just felt empty. The wolf had found its mate and she had left him bleeding, broken and alone in the forest. He raised his eyes skyward and noticed the sun had started to rise. He hitched his student mask in place, and striding back to the clearing donned his shirt before roughly waking the two still sleeping boys.
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