Beneath the Weeping Moon

Title: Beneath the Weeping Moon
Author: ExcentrykeMuse
Pairing: Harry/Fenrir
Summary: AU. Slytherin!Harry. Werewolves must exist, Harry decided.  He just had to wait and find one before he could run beneath the moon.  With that decided, he fell to sleep, and dreamt of white and black fur, sharp fangs, and a howl that lulled him into a deeper slumber. Harry/Fenrir.

Warnings: slash, chan, character death (canon), lycanthropy

A Legend.

Harry knew that Dudley was trying to scare him.  The only time his cousin spoke to Harry when he wasn’t punching him or chasing him with his friends was because Dudley wanted to terrify him.  “Freaks like you only deserve nightmares,” he said cruelly, his large frame and blond hair making him somewhat comical even when uttering threats.  “Freaks like you should have no peace.”

The word held little meaning for him.  For the first five years of his life, as far as he could remember, he had thought it was name.  “Freak” or “Boy.”  It was just a word.

Sticks and stones can break your bones, but words can never hurt you.

Harry stared calmly back at Dudley at the threat.

As usual, Dudley seemed unbothered.  He’d probably gotten used to the way Harry was quiet, rarely speaking back even when insulted.  He was quick and light, but almost always silent.

“You know what happens to freaks like you?” Dudley continued, a look of delight in his small beady eyes that were overwhelmed by his puffed-out cheeks.  He almost looked like a squirrel if Harry cocked his head to one angle.  Sometimes he would do it to amuse himself, but not today.  Not now.

Harry just stared at Dudley impassively.

“They get left out in the woods,” Dudley continued dramatically.  “Alone.”

“Alone,” Harry whispered, just to have something to say.  He knew that Dudley would hit him if he were completely listless; it was more self-preservation than any real need to speak or to have the sentiment repeated.  He knew that’s what happened to freaks.  His uncle had locked him out of the house enough times after dark and he would only be allowed back in the next morning with the milk.  He usually slept out in the shed, where it was cool enough in the summers.

“Yes,” Dudley crowed.  “Alone.  And there are wolves in the wood.”

“There haven’t been wolves for a century,” Harry said quietly, repeating the common children’s myth. 

“Yes, there are.  I saw it—on telly.”  Dudley shifted, making him appear like a pig trying to get comfortable in a mud sty.  His clothes were almost dirty enough. 

Harry knew he would be blamed for it later.  Somehow.  He always was.

“But they’re not just any wolves—they’re werewolves.”

Harry’s eyebrows shot up.

Dudley snickered to himself, thinking Harry was afraid although he was only curious.

“You’re not supposed to talk about such things like—werewolves and magic,” Harry whispered, leaning forward slightly so that Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia wouldn’t hear him.  “Such things don’t exist.”

“Werewolves do.  They were human once—before they were bitten.  And that’s what happens to freaks like you.  You’ll be left in the wood and bitten—and then you’ll be so disgusting Mum won’t even let you sleep in your cupboard!”

He pushed Harry over and then waddled away, laughing over his shoulder.

Harry didn’t bother to get up, a small smile forming on his face.

The next time Uncle Vernon locked him out, Harry found himself wandering Little Whinging, searching for the nearest clump of trees.

“Boy! Harry!” someone called, and he turned to see Mrs. Figg, who sometimes looked after him.  “What are you doing?”

“Looking for the woods—or something as close to it,” he responded quietly.

He didn’t much care for Mrs. Figg.  Her house smelled of cabbage and she only ever had stale cake to eat.  She also had far too many cats.  When he was a werewolf—and he hoped one day he would be—he’d probably get to eat cats.  He hated the small furry creatures.

He grimaced.  The idea of eating cat at the moment was rather disgusting.  That would probably change though.

“Shouldn’t you be at home?”  Mrs. Figg questioned.  “And why would you want the woods?  There aren’t woods for miles,” she stated emphatically.

Harry blushed and looked away.  “I’m looking for werewolves,” he murmured, half to himself, his mind wandering to the dreams he’d had in his cupboard the past few months.  Dudley had wanted to frighten him, but instead all he could think about was running free under the moon, away from the Dursleys, from the rest of humanity who watched him slowly starve and being beaten by other children while doing nothing.  He didn’t want to be a boy anymore.  He wanted to be a wolf.

“Well, werewolves are dangerous,” she insisted, giving him a long, penetrating look.  “Come on, Harry, I’ll take you home.”

He found himself being led back toward Privet Drive, and he sighed.  “So, do you believe in werewolves?” he asked timidly.  He wasn’t used to asking questions, even in school.  Still, he sensed her unease.

“Yes,” she whispered with a clenched jaw.  “And little boys like you should not go looking for them.”

“Why not?”

“They’ll bite you and then you’ll be just like them—and we wouldn’t want that to happen to a nice boy like you,” she finished, as if pleased with herself.

Harry didn’t answer.  There was nothing to say.

As he slept in his cupboard at night, he still thought of werewolves, if they could possibly be real.  Dudley wasn’t allowed to talk of magic either—Aunt Petunia would snap at him and then give him a cookie whenever he mentioned Alice in Wonderland or The Sorcerer’s Apprentice—still, he talked about werewolves.  He must have known something, or heard of it from somewhere.  Dudley wasn’t nearly clever enough to discover information on his own.  True, he might have seen a program on telly like he had said, but Aunt Petunia was always in the same room with him when he did, so he doubted that could have happened.  He certainly didn’t read about it in a book.

He grinned to himself in the darkness.

Werewolves must exist, he decided.  He just had to wait and find one before he could run beneath the moon.  With that decided, he fell to sleep, and dreamt of white and black fur, sharp fangs, and a howl that lulled him into a deeper slumber.

A Hope.

He had a compartment to himself, and he was sitting in it as the Hogwarts Express pulled away, a small smile twitching on his lips.  His mind tossed itself back to a month before when Hagrid had rescued him from the small island on the sea.

Harry found he didn’t like Hagrid much.  He had talked too much and expected answers.  The man—if he even was a man, and Harry seriously doubted it—had even seemed offended at his short replies and they had parted ways at Gringotts when Harry informed Hagrid he could find his own way around, if he could just tell him how to get back to Little Whinging again.

The giant had pressed some Muggle money in his hand and promptly left, leaving Harry to his own devices as he explored the Alley on his own.

A small yap drew his attention from the window and he looked down at his crup.  He hadn’t wanted a toad and certainly not a cat—and for some reason he couldn’t bring himself to purchase an owl.  He had no one to send letters to, and owls were fiercely independent.

“I’m going to be a wolf one day,” he whispered to the small magical dog.

His fingers were licked in return.

Everyone left him alone in his dorm, most of them too afraid of the quiet Boy-Who-Lived who somehow managed to get sorted into Slytherin.  As soon as the other first years had discovered that he wished to be alone, they had respected that, watching from the shadows and offering any assistance he might need if they saw him wanting for anything. 

It took him a month to realize why—they all wanted him as an ally.  From reading old newspapers in the library, he realized that with his unofficial title, he was one of the most politically powerfully figures in wizarding England.

In his second year, after exhausting the limited resources in the library, which he believed consisted of prejudices, he quietly sought out Malfoy and Nott.  “Tell me about werewolves,” he murmured, and Draco looked up at him in surprise and a bit of fear.  “Do they really run beneath the full moon?”

“Yes,” Theo answered quietly, his thin fingers pushing dark curls from his startling blue eyes.  “They’re said to be monsters.  They bite humans—Muggles even.”  He shuddered.  “It’s supposed to be painful.”

“Only if you fight it,” Draco countered and he turned his soulful gray eyes to Harry.  “In the last war, they were supporters of the Dark Lord, Potter.”

Harry looked back at him coolly and surprise flickered across Draco’s expression again. 

“You don’t—are you—“

Theo placed his hand quietly on Draco’s arm, calming him briefly.  “There are free wolves,” Theo explained, “wolves who embrace the change.  It isn’t painful for them—or so they say.  They also supposedly have more control during the Full Moon.”

Harry nodded solemnly, looking away.  The dungeons didn’t have any windows so sometimes their dorm room was a bit gray.

“Your parents,” he whispered, “do-do they know any werewolves?”

“Yes,” Draco answered after a minute.  “Fenrir Greyback.”

The name sent a shiver of pleasure down Harry’s spine.  “Oh?”  He glanced at his classmate.  Draco was looking about nervously, not meeting anyone’s eye.

“He’s dangerous.  They say he’s the most dangerous alive.  He likes—he likes to bite children, thinks the more who are infected—“

Theo’s hand tightened around Draco’s arm and Harry saw him gasp in discomfort.

“He thinks the more who carry the gene, the better conditions will be for werewolves,” Draco concluded, a small look of pride crossing his thin lips as if happy with himself for keeping a straight voice.  He was clearly afraid of just the idea of Greyback.

“He bites—children?”  Harry’s voice lilted at the end and he stared at Theo and Draco clearly.

“Yes,” Draco said.

Harry found himself smiling for the first time since his eleventh birthday.

“Do you,” Theo began hesitantly, “need someone to be bitten?”  His blue eyes glittered with intelligence.  “Yourself perhaps?”

Draco sucked in a breath, his eyes slanting to Theo before returning to Harry’s impassive face.

“The legends,” Theo continued steadily, “have reached the Muggle world, I understand.”

“Yes,” Harry agreed.

“I could understand it,” Theo whispered, “if I had come from the Muggle world.  Running free beneath the moon—it would have seemed magical in a world without, well, magic.”

Their eyes met and held until Draco cleared his throat.

His face was paler than usual, making it look pointier somehow, but his eyes held steady. 

“The Dark Lord promised equal rights to werewolves,” he admitted solemnly.  “They’re wizards—all of them.  Muggles die of the infection—the gene,” he corrected.

Harry said nothing, but looked at him searchingly.

“Greyback is said to be honored in the Dark Lord’s circle.  He is feared, of course, and he is dangerous—but he is respected for it as well.”

“And the others?”  He was now looking away from Theo and Draco, and was startled when he felt a cold hand pressed against his.  He looked up and met Draco’s cold eyes.

“If you like, I can arrange for you to speak to Father about him. If you desired, he could arrange a safe meeting.  I wouldn’t recommend any—change” —his eyes met and held Theo’s for a moment— “until you’re at least fifteen or sixteen.”  He swallowed nervously but his gaze remained strong.  “It’s supposed to be excruciating for children and it would be—difficult to hide from Dumbledore.  Still, that gives you years to make an informed decision.”

His hand remained on Harry’s for several more moments as silence enveloped the three.

Theo cleared his throat quietly.  “Werewolves of the cause are respected as Greyback is.  They are wizards.  They wield powerful magic that comes directly from the earth.  They are perhaps closer to the Old Ways as the moon directly whispers in their ears.”

“Werewolves,” Draco continued, “however, who deny what they are, are seen as the worst of scum—worse than Mudbloods.”

Harry started at the word, not recognizing it.

“Muggle-borns,” Theo explained.  “Those who steal magic.”

“My mother—my mother stole magic?”  Harry looked up, cool and serene, and yet felt a tinge of panic.

“The moon did not whisper to her, nor the earth,” Draco explained, “but they whisper both to you.”

A Possibility.

Harry found himself curious about the new Defense Against the Dark Arts professor.  He sat between his first two friends—Draco and Theo—who had become quiet and respectful comrades since the secret discussion the year before.  Sometimes, on the full moon, the three would walk the grounds before Harry would run toward the Forbidden Forest, feeling the wind rush against his cheeks before he stopped at the border of trees, staring, wondering if anyone or anything was looking back out at him.

Still, there was something different about the new professor.  He wore threadbare robes and, although he was only in his thirties, his face was lined with worry and age.  If he tilted his head certain ways, his hair almost appeared to have flecks of gray, even.

“It was a full moon,” Draco whispered as they left their first lesson.  “Lupin’s boggart—it was the full moon.”

The three paused just in front of the door and Harry looked back at the cupboard.  He hadn’t been permitted to face the creature, strangely.  Part of him wondered what it was he feared the most.

His professor’s somber amber eyes were staring back at him.

“You’re not as I imagined you,” Professor Lupin admitted once after holding Harry after class in October.  He was almost completely certain the man was a werewolf.  He was always ill during the full moon.

Harry stiffened at the hidden accusation.  “No.  I don’t seem to be what anyone imagined—then again, I was left to rot with Muggles.”

Ever since becoming friends with Draco and Theo, he’d found himself becoming more and more resentful over his life.  Fortunately, the previous summer he had split between his two friends.  He hadn’t set foot in Little Whinging since his first summer back—and he was rather hoping he never would again.

Lupin flinched perceptibly.  “Muggles aren’t that bad, you know,” he said calmly, in his most trustworthy voice.  It only made Harry distrust him more.  “They are people.”

Harry stared coldly at him.  He did not disagree verbally, but the hatred that flashed through his eyes caused Lupin to flinch visibly again.

He cleared his throat.  “Your parents were in Gryffindor with me,” he admitted, looking up wearily.

“How odd.  A Gryffindor werewolf,” Harry whispered before he could stop himself.

Horror flashed on Lupin’s face.

Amber eyes once again met bright green and the two stared at each other for several minutes.

“I beg your pardon?” Lupin finally said, licking his lips nervously.

Harry didn’t answer; they continued to look at one another.

Lupin began to shuffle papers, breaking the intense gaze.  “I’m afraid I don’t know what you mean.”

“Neither do I,” Harry concurred, startling the professor.  “You say I am not as you imagined me.  I think it shows that there was a failure of judgment, and it wasn’t mine.”

He didn’t wait for the professor to dismiss him, but instead left with a swish of his robes, his hand coming up to his green and silver tie, adjusting it just slightly.

“I ruined it,” Harry whispered to Theo as the three friends lay on Draco’s bed.  It was a bit tight, but this way they were able to put up locking charms.  Crabbe and Goyle wouldn’t breathe without Draco telling them to, and Zabini—well—he was introspective and too respectful of Harry’s position in Slytherin to show undue curiosity.

“How?” Draco inquired.

Harry fell asleep that night, dreaming of running free beneath the wild moon, but with a shadow forever watching him.

He found himself watching Lupin for the rest of the year, curious, not even paying much attention that Sirius Black was on the loose and for some strange reason wanted to break into Gryffindor Tower.

“He’s not a Death Eater,” Draco confided one night over hot chocolate that they got his house elf, Dobby, to bring the three of them.  Harry’s crup, Moonlight, was curled up happily in Harry’s lap.  “Wasn’t the one to—well—turn your parents in.”

Harry sipped his chocolate calmly, trying not to laugh as Moonlight licked his fingers.  “Who was it then?”

“The wizard he killed to wind up in Azkaban.”

“Oh,” Harry whispered.  “That’s fine then.”

Theo squeezed his shoulder gently, exchanging a quick glance with Draco.

Around Yuletide, which he was to spend with the Notts, Harry found himself once again alone with the Dark Arts Professor.

There was a pretense of tea, but neither one was drinking it.  Instead, Harry was looking about the office at all of the dark creatures, while Lupin was gazing at him in curiosity.

“You’re friends with Malfoy and Nott.”

Harry didn’t answer.  Silence was always preferable to words, and they both knew the statement was true, after all.

“I find it—strange—that the son of Lily and James Potter would associate with the children of dark wizards.”

“We’re all dark,” Harry murmured.  “Some just choose to accept the fact instead of fighting the inevitable and hiding behind self-righteousness.”  His eyes flashed as he glanced at Lupin.  “Werewolves for instance.”

“Ah, I wondered when you would bring that up.”

Once again, Harry didn’t respond.

“I am not a werewolf,” Lupin stated coldly.  They both knew he was lying.

“I am not a boy,” Harry whispered back, holding his gaze for a moment before looking at a tank with a grindylow in it. 

The message was clear.

“Why fight it?” Harry murmured.  “It is what you are.”

“Werewolves are dark creatures,” Lupin began to lecture by way of an explanation.

“As I said, we are all dark.”

“They are dangerous and they harm innocents.”

Harry snorted.  In his short life experience, he had realized that there were no innocents in the world.  Everyone was tainted, everyone hurt the weaker, even by good intentions.  It was the way of the world, of humanity.

“It’s just an excuse for self-loathing.”  His words were strong for once, resolute.

Lupin did not respond.

Harry hated him in that moment as he took his first sip of his tea.  Lupin had such a gift from magic itself and chose to make himself ill and hated his blessed existence.  Harry found that he was quietly happy when the professor’s status was revealed and the man was removed from the school at the end of the year.  He truly was pathetic.

A Dream.

Harry stayed firmly in his seat as silence reigned the great hall.  He knew that he was expected to get up, to walk forward.  His name had just come out of the Goblet of Fire, but he couldn’t be bothered.  He hadn’t placed it in and he waited on no one—not even a magical artifact or the Headmaster himself.

Unfortunately, the entire table had to begin clapping wildly at that moment, and he with several slaps on his shoulder, he was then escorted by the Head Girl, who was in Slytherin, down the aisles to the raucous applause of the entire house.

Ravenclaw had even joined in.

“Mr. Potter,” Dumbledore intoned sternly, and Harry just stared innocently back at him. 

A few moments later, he found himself in a small antechamber, everyone arguing over and around him.  Moody was looking at him thoughtfully, and Harry cleared his expression completely, giving nothing away.

“Harry, did you put your name in the Goblet?” Dumbledore asked desperately.

Harry only smirked in answer.

That night there was a riotous party in Slytherin.  Harry found himself in a seat of honor between Draco and Theo.  No one asked him how he did it—they knew better than that.  A Slytherin would never admit weakness, that he hadn’t done it, and would never betray his own secrets.

Overnight, the entire school became wary of him.  Gryffindors lashed out at Slytherins, and Hufflepuffs—even Diggory—gave him a wide birth.  Ravenclaws, in general, just watched.  Harry gravitated every full moon toward the Forbidden Forest, Draco and Theo coming with him. 

“You will be the undoubted leader next year,” Theo mentioned, “especially if you win.”

“Dumbledore’s called me in four times to ask me how I did it.”

“And?”

Harry smirked in response.

Over Yule he found himself dancing with his two best friends—none of them had taken dates even though Snape had informed Harry it was expected—before he was whisked away to Malfoy Manor in the small hours of the morning, his hand clasped in Draco’s.

“No one knows, not even Snape,” Draco promised quietly as he led Harry down a dark hall.  “Father arranged the Portkey, and Greyback has taken an oath not to harm you.”

Harry nodded and yet did not speak a word.

The room was drenched in darkness, and despite his desire to remain calm and unmoved his breathing came heavily.  He was still wearing his formal green robes, and he felt a light touch ghost over his shoulders.

Harry curled toward the touch and found himself enveloped in strong arms and the scent of rainwater and deep earth.  He could feel the crescent moon shining lovingly down on him and he sighed in happiness.

Harry never saw Greyback’s face, but he spent two full hours in his arms—according to Draco.

“What did you talk about?” Theo asked the next morning and Harry yawned, although he had slept well.  The moon had lulled him to sleep.

“Nothing,” Harry answered truthfully.  “We never said a word.”

“Is that a good or a bad thing?”

Harry smiled softly.  That was all Draco and Theo needed to know.

Harry was surprised when just before the second task, Theo pointed out a man with long black hair and gray eyes, sitting in the crowd.  He had only seen the man in pictures—Sirius Black.  He knew that the man was his godfather, but they had never before met.

Draco was at the bottom of the lake, and instead of talking to the man who rushed forward when he came out of the Black Lake first, he enveloped Draco in his arms, Theo suddenly there beside them.

“I wonder how they chose,” Harry murmured, looking at his two friends. 

Theo smiled.  “Because your beau wasn’t available, they probably flipped a coin.”

“He’s not my beau,” Harry murmured.

“That’s not what Father says,” Draco responded, a towel wrapped around his shivering form.  “He asks about you—calls you ‘cub’—wanted to know when you would come of age.”

Harry felt himself blushing.

The party in Slytherin when he won the Tri-wizard Cup was loud and lasted for days.  No one really expected the students to emerge and Snape had the House Elves send in meals and sobriety potions three times a day.  When the party finally ended, Harry heard rumors that Dumbledore himself had almost gotten involved, but Harry doubted that even he would dare.  They may all be students, but they were protective of their own and wouldn’t take a disturbance well.

Harry’s summer was spent at Manor houses and running through trees on the nights of the full moon, dreaming he was truly free. 

“The Dark Lord has returned,” Theo whispered one evening when he was with the Notts, “and he’s here to see you.”

That night, although the moon was a waning gibbous, Harry found himself running through the trees again, a shadow chasing him.  Harry never saw Greyback’s—Fenrir’s—face in the darkness, but he could feel the moon weeping over them, blessing them.

“When?” Harry breathed as they rested by a stream, shadows hiding all but Fenrir’s profile.  It was strong, bold—and Harry felt himself drawn to the chiseled visage.

Fenrir only responded by pulling Harry close to him.  Harry fell asleep in the strong, protective embrace.

He woke up alone the next morning.

A Longing.

Harry watched as the days quietly passed and turned into months.  Soon he was taking his OWLs.  He, Draco, and Theo had decided to try and block Granger from all of the top positions.  They were tired of her pretending she knew better than everyone, including society as a whole.  There were rumors she was even trying to free house elves, though Harry couldn’t see why.  Dobby doted on him and Draco—he thought Dobby would die of shock if he couldn’t take care of them.

He noticed that girls began to stare at him—including the Ravenclaw seeker—but Theo and Draco were always there, protecting him, keeping others away.

He was surprised when the Weaslette came up to one day in the great hall.  Her hair flowed down her back and it looked like she was wearing a padded bra.  It looked horrible on her.

“Hi, Harry,” she breathed.

Harry didn’t look up at her.  Only his closest friends were permitted to call him by his name—and she certainly didn’t count.

There was an intake of breath and Harry glanced up to see Lavinia Urquhart pointing her wand directly in between Weaslette’s eyes.  He smiled.  Lavinia was a good sort—a great reserve keeper.

“You were saying?” Lavinia whispered coldly.

The Weaslette flinched.

“H-Hi, Potter,” she whispered.

Harry looked down at his meal again before turning to Theo.  “How’s your sister doing?  Viola?”

Draco’s eyes gleamed from the other side of Theo, clearly picking up the tone of Harry’s prompt.

“Yes, she’s what—twenty or so?  I’ve never seen a more beautiful witch.”

“Except Mrs. Malfoy,” Harry countered, a gleam in his eyes.  “She’s the definitive pureblood lady.”

Theo laughed quietly between them.  The three of them had spent several hours comparing pureblood women and it had been easily decided—Narcissa Malfoy was all grace, refinement, poise, and quiet but deadly power.

“I’ll send Viola your compliments,” he murmured.

Harry glanced at the Weaslette.  She was blushing red in fury.

It clashed rather horribly with her hair, unfortunately.

“She was talking about you in her last letter,” Theo continued, slyly, his eyes resting on Harry.  They both knew it was a lie—or a fabrication for the overheard conversation.  Viola was rather self-absorbed and had told Theo quite forcefully when they were thirteen that until he had grown and gotten a job, she wouldn’t take a second look at his friends, before complimenting him on having befriended both the Malfoy heir and the Harry Potter.

There was a huff and hasty footsteps.  The Weaslette was gone.

Fifth year was lazy, sleepy almost, except for the amount of work.  The Defense professor was a Ministry idiot, but she kept on cow-tailing to Draco, and Harry and Theo benefitted from it.

They enjoyed spending time in the library playing card games with tarot cards and watching Granger worry herself into a ball of stress when they finished their homework. 

Quietly attacks began and Harry could see Dumbledore become worried.  When Christmas came around, Harry found himself called to the Headmaster’s office, and he quietly climbed the revolving stairs, wondering what he had done to deserve such an ‘honor.’

“Harry, my boy,” Dumbledore greeted, a twinkle in his eyes.

“Mr. Potter,” Harry corrected, not liking the familiarity.  “Only my closest friends can call me Harry.”

A frown quickly played across Dumbledore’s old lips and then he only nodded.

“We think,” he began carefully, his hands folded across his desk, “that the recent attacks are being perpetrated by Death Eaters—Voldemort’s followers.”

Harry flinched at the name.  No one in Slytherin dared to say it—it was too dangerous.  The Dark Lord’s name could never be uttered by anyone but himself.

“Fear of a name, Harry, only increases fear of the thing itself.”

“Mr. Potter—I’m not afraid; why should I be?” he inquired coldly.

Dumbledore’s eyes hardened.  “Why indeed,” he murmured.  “You are close friends with young Malfoy and Nott, I understand.”

Harry didn’t answer.  They both knew it was true.

The Headmaster sighed.  “I think—it would be safer for you if you did not possibly visit them over the next Christmas.  I don’t know if you have before, you’ve probably been at your aunt’s, but if it is Death Eater activity, it simply wouldn’t be safe.  I think it would be better if we moved you to a safe location—your godfather’s house, actually.”

Harry’s eyes flashed.  “I don’t have a godfather.”

“On the contrary, you do.”

“I do not,” he reiterated.  “I shall spend the holidays where I please.  I certainly won’t be visiting a man who hasn’t deemed to contact me in the past fifteen years.”

Dumbledore’s face fell.  “Professor Lupin will be there,” he tried again.

“Yes, well, Lupin and I dislike each other.”

“I was not aware—“

“No, you wouldn’t be,” Harry responded casually.  “This is, after all, the first time we have spoken.  You know nothing about me, sir.”

The conversation ended soon after.

That Christmas Harry was once again at Malfoy Manor.  Everyone whispered that the Dark Lord was there, but Harry never saw him.  Instead he walked among other dark wizards in dark blue robes—he preferred the color—and a few nights before the full moon ran through a little copse of trees.  He knew Fenrir was watching him, had heard that the Dark Lord had summoned him, but Harry never saw the man.  Instead, he ran through the trees, his face upturned to the moon that was almost full.  He was happy, complete—or as close to it as he could become before he was turned.

A Reality.

So much had changed over the past year.  The summer before he had been taken to the Ministry—Mr. Malfoy had contacts and they found themselves alone in the Hall of Prophecies.  Harry had taken down an orb and then smashed it on the ground, breaking apart the future within it.

It was obscure knowledge.  Prophecies were only viable while they existed in physical form.

The Malfoys began quietly tutoring him in pureblood manners.

“This will be important,” Mrs. Malfoy had explained to him.  “No one will know what you are to become.  You will be able to move in society and should act accordingly.”

That summer there were balls and parties, and Harry would walk fearlessly through the magical alleys, looking at dress robes and comparing them with his friends. 

“You always wear blue,” Draco commented once, but Harry only laughed.

The next day he purchased lush gray, remembering the dreams of warm fur he had dreamt in his cupboard before he went to Hogwarts.

All throughout his sixth year, Harry felt like he was waiting for something.  Dumbledore appeared to watch him more closely, which made him uncomfortable, but he would stare quietly back until the Headmaster looked away again. 

Girls still flitted around him and even a few boys began to notice, but Harry could only think of Fenrir.  Sometimes near the full moon, when he ran near the Forbidden Forest, his faithful crup barking happily at his heels, he thought he could sense someone watching him, and would smile to himself, knowing Fenrir was near.

“Wolves aren’t,” Harry whispered desperately to Theo one night in February when he realized that somehow he had fallen quietly in love with Fenrir.  “They don’t—“

“Don’t what?” Theo gently prodded, and Harry took a deep breath, burying his face in Moonlight’s soft fur.

The small dog yapped happily and then licked the bridge of his nose.

“Monogamous,” he finally admitted, looking away and out toward the sleeping grounds.

A warm hand covered his and he looked up into Theo’s startling eyes.  “Wolves,” he said quietly, “are not werewolves.”

“He won’t want me,” Harry continued softly, “not forever.  I can’t give him a litter.”

Moonlight licked his fingers soothingly, wagging his forked tail slowly.

“Werewolves can’t have litters.  He wants you, Harry.  From what I’ve heard, I’m certain of it.”

Sometimes Harry would go out to the forest on a new moon, knowing Fenrir wouldn’t be watching, but wishing to be close to him.  He would lie in the grass near the border of the trees, his eyes searching the depths of the dark forest, but still he saw nothing and only heard the shivering of the wind in the grass.

Then it happened.  Harry had known that Draco and Theo were working on something all year.  They’d never let him come, said it was a surprise, and then there were Death Eaters in the school, firing curses. 

“Happy Birthday,” Theo whispered as they rushed up to the astronomy tower. 

A large hand came out and grasped Harry by the arm, pulling him into an abandoned corridor.  Harry could barely see, and yet he could feel Fenrir.

“Soon, cub,” a deep voice promised and then he kissed Harry deeply, fiercely, and then he was gone again.

Harry never saw his face.

A smile never left his lips even when he ran through the school, up toward the tower, and then he watched impartially as Draco and Theo body bound the Headmaster.  There was a scream of rage, a flash of green light, and then the Dark Mark was licking the heavens, and still Harry could only smile, thinking of Frenrir, thinking of the promise, and that soon he would run free beneath the moon.

He waited quietly, patiently, and after Dumbledore’s sham of a funeral, Draco whispered that soon it would be time, and whisked him back to Malfoy Manor for the summer.  Still nothing changed until the morning after his birthday, when Mrs. Malfoy quietly whispered that it was time.  Later that day had said goodbye, telling them that they would meet again.

A few moments later and was gone, in the Forest of Dean, and he could feel the energy in the air as the full moon rose about the ancient trees.  Theo had taken his wand before Draco had left him there, hugging him wordlessly before Aparating away.

Then he was running, free beneath the moon.  He could hear the growl near him, felt himself being pushed to the ground and the fur running up against his skin and then—Nothing.

The End.

2 thoughts on “Beneath the Weeping Moon

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