So Much To Give
Remus was incredibly weak from his transformation and the dementors were closing in on him. He silently prayed that Madam Pomfrey would arrive and save him from them. He heard something downstairs. She was on her way. The dementors noticed the sound as well but chose to ignore it. One of them began to lower its hood. As Remus saw what was under it's hood he felt like screaming except nothing came out. Madam Pomfrey burst into the room, "I've got your wand and fresh clothes. Madam Pomfrey's eyes widened at the sight of the dementors. She fainted, falling to the ground. The dementors swooped over to her, forgetting their weak prey. Pomfrey was happier, having not just undergone a transformation. Remus darted for his wand. It had rolled under the bed. He picked it up, grasping it tightly. He tried to think of a happy memory but all he could think of was his transformation. Then he closed his eyes and pictured his friends. He remembered how he had feared that they would abandon him if they knew. He remembered how they were learning to become animagi for him. He lifted his wand, pointing it at the dementors that were now surrounding the passed out witch. "Expecto Patronum!" Out of the end of his wand burst a blinding, dazzling, silver animal, a wolf. The dementors retreated through the door, away from the witch. The wolf patronus stood guard as Remus dressed and tried to wake Madam Pomfrey. She stirred and he helped her off the floor. The patronus led the way through the house, the tunnel and the grounds. The dementors were back to their place in the forest unwilling to come closer because of the patronus. The wolf only vanished when they were safely back in the castle.
"You know Mr Lupin, that is quite incredible."
"What is Madam Pomfrey?" he asked, suddenly confused.
"Being able to perform the patronus charm when you've just transformed," Pomfrey explained, "most people wouldn't manage it at all – let alone a corporal patronus. I think you deserve a few house points for saving my life – how does fifty sound?"
Remus smiled, "thank you Madam Pomfrey."
"Lets get you cleaned up dear. You have a lot of cuts today," Pomfrey cleaned him up as best she could and cleaned his cuts. Because they were caused by a werewolf she couldn't remove them completely but she was able to make them look slightly better so his friends wouldn't ask too many questions.
When Remus finally returned to Gryffindor Tower, the three marauders sat together in their dormitory listening to his story. "Bloody hell," Sirius frowned, "Sure glad you made it, mate."
"You and me both," Remus laughed.
Sirius and James told Remus everything that he had missed during his transfiguration. "The Slytherins attacked Dorcas Meadowes."
"The Ravenclaw?" Remus asked.
Sirius nodded, "She's a muggle-born ain't she." He shook his head, "We found out this morning. They used some pretty horrible curses on her by the time the aurors got to her she was really badly injured. The Slytherins ran away before they could get there. She nearly died. They sent her to St Mungo's. We still don't really know if she'll make it."
Remus raised an eyebrow, "do we know which Slytherins?"
James shook his head, "but does it matter? The school won't do anything… send them home for a month. You know, Avery and Malfoy and all their buddies came back with new brooms after their month away… It's hardly a punishment – except for Snape…"
"What do you mean?" Remus and Sirius looked bewildered.
"Snape was the only one who came back looking worse than when he left."
"I wish we'd been watching the map," James sighed.
"You shouldn't feel guilty James. It's not your responsibility to watch after all the muggle-borns at Hogwarts," Remus reminded him.
"I know," James muttered. He was angry with himself, "how are you anyway? Do you want to sleep? We can leave you to rest if you want."
"Nah I'm fine. Need to catch up on homework actually," Remus replied.
"Homework?" James laughed.
"Have you heard anything from Pete?" Remus asked, concern etched across his face.
James shook his head, running a hand through his hair.
"Nothing. Nada. Not a peep," Sirius frowned.
"Hopefully he'll come back soon," Remus sighed.
"I miss him," James frowned.
A few days later Peter returned to the school. He had lost a bit of weight and he looked completely exhausted. He fell back into his place with the marauders and they celebrated his return by pranking the Slytherins in class. They began to transform the Slytherins' wands and quills into a random assortment of items, ranging from pineapples to muggle pens to worms and rats. Peter struggled not to laugh every time. He had to cover his mouth in an attempt not to get into trouble.
They had studied zombies, Werewolves and the Gytrash in defence against the dark arts. The Gytrash was a spectral dog that comes out at night. Professor Salazar had told them that he wanted to take them out into the grounds at night to show them a Gytrash but under the current circumstances that was impossible. He explained that perhaps later in the year it would be possible. "The Hogwarts grounds are one of the few locations that Gytrashes are found. The Gytrash is sensitive to light and a simple Lumos spell can be used to ward it off." The rest of the lesson was spent practicing their lightening spells. "For homework – two sides of parchment on the differences between the werewolf and the animagus for next lesson." The class groaned.
Divination was proving a waste of time. Lily and James spent most of their time laughing and making things up, "Oh – you're going to move to Brazil and marry a rich man…"
"Oh – you're going to have kittens."
"Oh – you're going to live forever. Have you seen the size of your life line… oh wait… that wasn't your life line… oops."
Professor Lifflilee had taken to reading a different pupil's palm each lesson. Last lesson it had been James. She had said that he would not necessarily have the longest life but that it would be full… full of happiness, full of joy, full of friendship and love. She had said that his story would be one to match the great love stories of history. James had felt ridiculously embarrassed. Harry had watched from the corner a tear falling down his face as his father rubbed an awkward hand through his hair and his face turned a bright red. Today's predictions however were less welcome. Professor Lifflilee had Mary Macdonald's hand, "I've never seen a shorter lifeline. Your death isn't as far away as you expect. You have so much potential, so much to give but you will never have a chance to give it."