Summary: As one family struggles to come together, another is torn further apart.
Main Pairing: RL/OC
Story Rating: Hard R or NC-17 (depending on your own views)
Chapter title: Back to Court III
Chapter Rating: R for language
As soon as Deloris was escorted from the court room Dannie let out a deep sigh of relief over what she had just witnessed. She then heard the magistrate’s chamber door open and saw the one who was actually trying Deloris’ case walk out. “Would you please be so kind as to remove the cloak so that I know where you are? He asked and Dannie gladly obliged. “I hope you don’t mind but before we go into the other room we need to wait until the court reporter and my bailiff arrive so they may witness your testimony.” Dannie nodded. “Do you realize how many questions your friends have raised this afternoon? To be honest you’re the first of your kind in our world and the idea that you’re a muggle on top of that. Didn’t you ever feel out of sorts in our world?”
“Not until recently.” Dannie replied and the man merely nodded his understanding. Together they sat in the large court room when Dannie noticed that the man kept looking at his pocket watch “Does what I am make you uncomfortable?”
“Dear no, far from it. There are so many questions that my colleague and I are extremely curious about but alas if they are asked now then we won’t be able to ask them during your testimony.” he then noticed that she appeared to be uncomfortable there so he tried to ease the tension and asked “Are there any questions that you may have before we get started?”
“Yes, do you by chance have any facilities that I could use?”
The man smirked, “I didn’t even consider that with you being confined all day. Right back there in the back chambers there some.” he replied as he pointed at the door behind the bench. Dannie stood up and quickly made her way through the back door.
Meanwhile down the corridor Severus was ranting when he learned the news that Sirius had not been available to testify when called upon so knowing that this would not be the first time he would be hearing about this he decided to stand outside their waiting room to enjoy the temporary quiet. He then leaned his back against the wall and closed his eyes for a few moments when he then heard, “Harry did they put all of you back here?”
He then opened one eye as he turned his head towards the voice before turning to greet Hermione with a hug, “Yes, I guess they wanted us away from all the crowds.”
“By chance are Jamie and Ann back here with you?”
“No, I haven’t seen Ann all day. I thought her and Sirius were upfront with you until just a few moments ago.”
“What about Jamie, didn’t he say anything to you before you left the castle?” she asked.
“Hermione, have you heard anything from Ann in the past few days?”
“No, the last time I talked to either of them was right after the first hearing. I had to go out of town with my parents for a seminar afterwards but Jamie was to meet me out in front today to let me know how the meeting with his mum went.” she replied.
“You knew he was going to meet his mum and you were alright with it?”
“Of coarse I was. In fact he wasn’t sure he even wanted to see her but…”
“Mione I know you know what she is. You couldn’t have forgotten one of the reasons that dad and Sirius kept us constantly training last year was to keep us from being forced to leave Hogwarts and join Voldemort’s recruits.” Harry stated.
“Of course I remember, I was there too.”
“Who do you thing was in charge of training those recruits and responsible for wanting us there to begin with?”
“But she’s his mum, surely she wouldn’t…” she then stopped what she was saying when she noticed the look on Harry’s face and her vision started becoming blurry.
“Mione, I’m sorry but Jamie was…”
Hermione blinked her eyes and the tears started streaming down her face “NO! It doesn’t matter, he can fight it.” Harry shook his head, “Your dad’s not the only person who can turn his back on Voldemort Harry. Jamie can too.” she cried.
Harry pulled her into a hug and let her on his shoulder, “I’m sorry Mione but they changed it. If he fights it…it will…” he couldn’t finish the sentence since her cries were growing louder. “I’m so sorry.” he said again as he looked up at Severus who entered the corridor to see what the commotion was. Harry then pulled back and led her into their waiting room to give her a little more privacy.
By the time Dannie returned to the court room the bailiff and court reporter had joined the magistrate and were waiting on her. “Are you ready to begin?” he asked and she nodded. “Very well if you would follow me.” Dannie and the other two then followed him through the side door and turned down a long corridor that led to the far back of the building away from the courtroom and where everyone else was waiting. As soon as they entered the man’s chambers she looked around at the large oak desk with leather chairs and bookshelves along the walls. “If you would please make yourself comfortable.” he said as he pointed towards one of the chairs and then sat down behind the desk. The reporter placed a blank parchment on the back table along with her quick quote quill and as soon as she nodded to the magistrate he began. “Officially we would have to at least have Deloris’ solicitor in the room but since he has removed himself from the case it is unnecessary this time.” he stated and Dannie nodded slightly, “Do you have any questions regarding these proceedings?”
“I thought that with her position compared to mine she would have been exonerated from all of this.”
“Unfortunately if these were normal circumstances then she would have been, but the ministry would have handled the whole situation in private and in their own way with our world being none the wiser. Since the news was mentioned during a trial that was of great interest to the public then we had no choice but to continue, especially since my colleague’s daughter also happened to be one of her victims. It didn’t help that Miss Umbridge had become careless on who her clients were. It seems that although Julius was a regular at many of her parties he was the one who assisted us in capturing her.” the magistrate explained then he looked at his pocket watch again. “We had better get started. Would you please state your name and position in the community for the record.”
“Danielle Angel Lightpaws, Herbology teacher at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.”
“It is unusual for a muggle to teach at Hogwarts or any of our other schools for that matter. Would you care to explain who you came upon this position?”
“Professor Dumbledore offered me the position when I first arrived with my daughter last term. He said he was in need of someone with my capabilities.”
“For how long have you studied Herbology and who was your teacher?”
“Mama started teaching me from the time I was four and then when she crossed I learned from her sister.”
“When you were first accidentally bitten and brought back to our world did anyone explain to you what your obligations to the ministry were?”
“Just that I would have to register and get my serial number before going home with Bria and preparing for Remus’ trial. As soon as we had dropped our belongings off at home we had every intention of doing so.”
“In knowing what Mr. Lupin did was illegal and your relationship with him, how is the ministry to believe that the two of you were just going to step into the offices and register of your own free will.”
“We came back here didn’t we? We could have easily stayed at papa’s home and nobody would have ever come after us.”
“The laws state that a werewolf would be immediately taken to serve the moment he bites another witch or wizard. First of all I am neither a witch nor wizard, secondly nobody floo’d, apparated, or owled us regarding the bite. The first time we were even approached was outside the airport in London while waiting on transportation back home.”
“How much time had passed between the time you were bitten and the time you were contacted?”
“I’d say 2 ½ almost three days.”
“And you are completely sure that Mr. Lupin was not contacted during any of this time.”
“Positive, I was with him at all times until we arrived here.” Dannie replied.
“When you were taken to the Safehouse were the procedures the same as what you had expected?”
“What did happen?” he asked but Dannie looked at the ground and shook her head.
“Listen I know I don’t have any rights in this world of yours but what I saw and experienced was nothing I would have expected.”
“We would like to know what’s going on in these facilities. We have tried numerous surprise visits and every time the inspector would come back stating that they found nothing wrong. Please, you have been in there.”
“There were other women in there as well, why don’t you ask them?”
“Because they are either mentally or physically unable to tell anyone what happened to them. You seem to be quite stable minded.”
Dannie hesitated at first but soon told the magistrate everything’s that had happened until the morning of Remus’ first hearing.
“That morning that you had your accident, you didn’t state what happened.”
“He’s not going to find out is he?”
“Not unless you want him to. He won’t see the records, they will remain a part of Miss Umbridge’s case file. But with the commotion that happened here that morning, you may want it to be known so that it could help explain the connection the two of you have.”
Dannie looked at him and said “What if what I say causes Moony to get pissed and emerge to attack the ones involved? Then we’ll have to go through a whole other trial all because of the effects of this one. They need to be punished for their actions but I refuse to take a chance on loosing him again.”
“There’s no guarantee he’ll make it through this one as it stands now so you really don’t have anything to loose.”
“You’re not the one proceeding over his trial and I don’t want to take the chance.”
“I already understand a wolf’s nature. If your testimony is enough to help give Deloris the worse possible punishment then she would be out of his reach and you would have nothing to fear.”
“A cell in Azkaban until she has her soul sucked out is nothing but an easy way out for someone like her.” Dannie mumbled not thinking anyone heard until she saw the smirk on the magistrates face.
“Were you placed under any spells at anytime that would force you to do things you normally wouldn’t do?”
“The only spell that I know was placed on me was a body bind when I tried to go back to my room instead of the ‘welcoming room’.”
“Where her clients decide which one of us they wanted to spend time with.”
“Did you explain to Miss Umbridge that you already have a mate?”
“Numerous times but she said I needed to earn my keep.”
“What happened to you in this welcoming room?”
“I was placed on a table where I was molested again.”
“Why didn’t you try to get away?”
“I was still under the body bind at that time. It wasn’t removed until one of the clients wanted to see inside my mouth. I was touched again after that and that was the last thing I remember”
The magistrate then picked up a file and stated “According to your files you are reported to be quite violent. You not only attacked Miss Umbridge but also some of her orderlies. But the report from the private counselor that was hired states otherwise. Is this because you already knew her as Mr. Lupin’s sister?”
“I had never met nor heard about Maggie until she arrived at the Safehouse. Yes I may have lost my temper with those in charge of that place but it was only in self defense.”
“So in your defense you tried to bite Miss Umbridge?”
“If I had bitten her it would have connected our minds during the moon, that’s the last thing in the world I wanted. I was only trying to take that switch away from her so that the beatings would stop.”
“I noticed you don’t have your serial number showing. Was it not explained to you that by law it’s suppose to remain visible when while you are in a Ministry facility or being questioned by a Ministry official?”
“Although I know that’s the rule even though it was never officially explained to me but I wasn’t marked in the same location that Remus and Bria were.”
“I hate to say this with what you claim to have been through but we do need to verify that you have infact received your numbers.” the magistrate continued when he noticed the look on Dannie’s face, “I’ll remain right where I’m at if you’ll agree to just show them to my clerk.” Dannie closed her eyes and took a deep breath as she nodded while the clerk rose from her seat and approached the side of her chair allowing the view to the man. As she slowly raised her skirt higher and higher the tension in the room grew until the last three letters in the series was visible and the man stated, “That’s sufficient.” and Dannie let out a sigh of relief that she didn’t have to show them the complete mark. “I do believe that we have all the information that we need. Thank you for your time.”
Dannie nodded and as soon as she was hidden under the invisibility cloak again the magistrate gathered the notes from the clerk and led her back into the courtroom where the trial had already started again and she sat back down where she was before.
“Mr. Weasley, you sit there and state that Mr. Lupin is not a danger to any of your schoolmates or professors. Were you not one of the students that came very close to being attacked by him just two years ago?” Mcnair asked.
“Yes sir.” Ron replied
“Then how can you consider him safe?”
“If Professor Dumbledore believes it’s safe to have him back as a professor then it is.”
“You’re talking of the headmaster of your school? The same headmaster who has time and time again been removed from his office due to either Ministry concerns or health issues? Did he not hire a Mr. Quarrell your first year?” Ron nodded, “And what was wrong with him that kept him from returning?”
“You-know-who possessed half his body before he died.”
“And what about your fourth year with a Professor Moody?”
“It was really Bartemus Couch Jr., but Professor Dumbledore didn’t know about them and…”
“He didn’t know? This is the same headmaster that knew he had hired a werewolf whom already had posed a threat to three students in the past. How does he know that Professor Lupin won’t try to attack again, he’s already attacked and changed one of your other professors, who’s to say he won’t do worse by tearing one of your classmates to pieces?”
“All the students know what Professor Lupin is and they know not to leave the castle during the full moon.”
“That maybe true but Miss Lightpaws also knew what he was and she considered herself safe from him. No more questions Mr. Weasley, thank you.” Mcnair stated with pride in his voice. Ron then left the stand refusing to look at Remus or Bria. “Your honor, I would like to call Deloris Umbridge to the stand.” the magistrate nodded and sat back as his co-worker walked up to the bench followed by Deloris who took the witness seat. “Would you please state your name and position in the community for the record?”
“Deloris Jane Umbridge, currently unemployed.”
“Miss Umbridge what is your relationship to the defendant?”
“There is none.”
“Very well, how did you come to know the defendant?”
“We were to be wed.”
“Was this something that the two of you agreed upon?”
“Merlin no. Our parents arranged it at the time of our births.” Deloris spat
“What was the reason the two of you were never joined?”
“Are you kidding? The moment I found out what I was to be joined to I contacted my parents immediately and they dissolved it due to breach of contract.”
“But you did receive his trust fund afterwards.”
“Only because by the time the truth was discovered there were no suitable wizards left to join with to insure that our bloodline remained pure.”
“You had a new werewolf under you care recently by the name of Danielle Lightpaws, did you not?”
“As a patient did she abide by the Safehouse rules and regulations?”
“Miss Lightpaws was a very troublesome case. Not only did she not do the work that was assigned to her but when we provided her with her serial number she attacked not only the physician performing her procedure but she also tried to bite me. She refused to wear proper attire and anytime we tried to examine her serial number to make sure it wasn’t infected she would change into her animagus form. Nobody felt comfortable going near her due to her unpredictable outbursts.”
“Thank you Miss. Umbridge.” Mcnair said.
“I have a few questions Miss Umbridge.” the proceeding magistrate stated. “I have not only looked over the records you provided but also what Mademoiselle Margaret sent to the Ministry regarding Miss. Lightpaws’ case. I have also spoken with someone who witnessed the treatment she received at your center and I must say that all this raises quite a few questions.”
“Anyone’s testimony against me is considered irrelevant in this matter if I or my solicitor was not present?”
“Well as we can plainly see you no longer have a solicitor and since this witness is to remain anonymous for their own safety, as long as I let you answer to their allegations it is permissible in this court.” he replied.
“Well this witness of yours must be a disgruntle employee who was recently dismissed.”
“It doesn’t matter what they were, what does matter is what they said. Although not employed by any Ministry Department, Mademoiselle Margaret was called in to be a private counselor to Miss. Lightpaws am I correct?”
“Of coarse you are, I would never hire anyone with her reputation.”
The magistrate just glanced at Deloris for stating more than she needed to then he continued. “According to the reports that were sent in to the ministry, Miss. Lightpaws was described in a completely different manner as what your reports claim. How is it that two witches that specialize in counseling new werewolves could come up with such different descriptions of the same patient?”
“Of course her report would be different. The woman is that thing’s sister.”
“Upon arrival is it not part of the counselor to make accurate records on any markings on your patients such as scars, tattoos, or birthmarks?”
“We examine all our patients for such marks, sometimes there are one or two that are overlooked though.”
“Have you ever caught Miss Lightpaws inflicting pain upon herself during her stay?”
“If you are referring to the marks on her shoulders and back those were due to a reaction she had to the cleansing process.”
“A reaction to the cleansing? Did you not obtain copies of her medical files from her employer before performing this cleansing?”
“It was extremely early in the morning when I brought her in. I believe it would have been quite inconsiderate of me to have bothered him at such an hour over something so trivial.”
“How much privacy are your patents given during the time they bathe?”
“Due to the fact that the patients must be thoroughly cleansed it’s done by those who work at the center.” Deloris replied.
“Who was the one that decided which employees were to trained to do the cleansing?”
“What are you accusing me of?”
“I’m not accusing you of anything, I’m just merely trying to piece together the allegations that the witness has brought up so see what really happened and what kind of treatments Miss Lightpaws received to show such a violent nature towards you and your employees.”
“Miss Lightpaws was treated no differently than any other of the women that resided at the Safehouse. Upon arrival at the facility every patient receives a thorough cleansing by my employees, they are then placed in their rooms for their registration, and finally they are given the proper supplies to arrange their room as they seem fit and to change their sheets into proper attire. They are fed three times a day and in return we request that they perform certain jobs to help run the center.”
“In looking at your list of employees I notice that there aren’t any women that worked at the Safehouse. Is this list accurate?”
“I have numerous workers on a daily basis both paid and volunteers, I cannot be expected to remember which ones are which, if they receive payment for services then it is done strictly through the Ministry.”
“According to the worker’s sign in sheet, you were in fact the only female that was working the time that Miss Lightpaws was brought in.” he asked as he started skimming through a pile of parchments, but Deloris didn’t reply “In fact it seems that since there in fact has never been a female employee or volunteer since you obtained your position at the Safehouse.”
“I did the best I could with what I had to work with your honor. It is not my place to question why women in our society chose not to obtain work of any kind at the Safehouse.”
“It has also been brought up that on weekends including the day that Miss Lightpaws had her accident, you had numerous visitors that in fact not related to your patients. Mr. Mcnair has pointed out on several occasions that werewolves are dangerous creatures and you even pointed out that Miss. Lightpaws by this time had shown violent tendencies. Did you not foresee any sort of danger to these visitors of yours?”
“The people who visit the Safehouse on weekends are our sponsors. They provide financial means for the center to remain running so that the females will have a place to reside without endangering the population. The majority of my patents that reside in the center stay there so that they will no longer be a burden or danger to their families. They are placed there and forgotten. Just as any patient would they enjoy having visitors.” she paused to glare at the magistrate sitting behind the adjoining bench, “In order to keep the safety of those who are considerate enough to do what the family members refuse to, I have never allowed such visitations to take place around the cycle of the full moon. The instance with Miss Lightpaws was an error on my part, I was only trying to calm her nature by permitting her to partake with the others and to see that we meant her no harm.” Deloris replied.
“What of the instance that took place later the same afternoon?”
“That was also a mistake. The group that arrived was a group of young school aged wizards that I had assumed were from a private school on nothing more than a field trip in order to learn more about werewolves. I had left them in the care of their instructor while I went to check to make sure Miss Lightpaws’ body was properly cared for.”
“What of the three days following? Why did you not return to the Safehouse?”
“I had already scheduled a leave of absence during that time that I returned early from as soon as I heard the news of what had happened. I never expected to have been brought up on charges such as this.”
“One last question. If customary location for a werewolf to receive their serial number is their arm, why is it that Miss Lightpaws received hers in a more private location?”
“With working with these females for as long as I have I learned that although they never return to society due to our obvious reasons, they are infact vain and would rather not have something so obvious placed on their arms. They live with what they are everyday for the rest of their lives, why should they have to have a visual reminder of their infliction?”
“Thank you Miss Umbridge, no more questions.” the magistrate stated as Deloris stepped down from the witness stand. “Mr. Lupin, if you don’t mind.” One of the bailiffs then walked over to Remus and Bria’s table and escorted him up to the stand.
“Would you please state your name and position in the community for the record?” Mcnair asked.
“Remus Jonah Lupin, Professor at Hogwarts.”
“Mr. Lupin, when where you first cursed with the Lycanthrope virus?”
“A little over thirty years now, since I was six years of age.”
“When you were accepted into Hogwarts, was the headmaster aware of your condition?”
“Yes he was, it was listed in my medical records.”
“Who else was made aware of it?”
“My professors at the time and my close friends.”
“With your long term engagement to Miss Umbridge did you not consider her a close enough friend to make sure she knew at an earlier age?”
“Deloris was never considered a friend, until she transferred to Hogwarts I knew here as merely the daughter of a business associate of my father’s.”
“How did you learn of your engagement to her?”
“When she transferred to Hogwarts at the beginning of our sixth year she attempted to instruct me who I could be friends with and who I couldn’t and how in lowering my standards to associate with anyone that was not a pureblood would only degrade my status in the community. When I asked her why she would be so concerned about my social standing I was informed that if I wanted our union to be a joyful one then I would abide by her wishes.”
“How did you react to her statement?”
“I’ll admit I laughed. I actually believed her to be delusional at the time. Here was this new student that I barely knew telling me that to befriend muggle lovers and mudbloods was no better than consorting with animals. It wasn’t until the winter holiday that year when my father confirmed what she said.”
“What happened after that?”
“I bided my time and waited for her to start degrading my friends again. When the time finally came I calmly pulled her aside and explained to her my situation and why my friends were such an important part of my life. She at first accused me of lying but a few days later was when I received a howler from my father regarding what I had told her.”
“Was it necessary for you to inform her of your condition?”
“According to father, no. He didn’t want her to learn of it until after we consummated our joining. I still believe that what I did was for the better, even if I wasn’t a werewolf our joining wouldn’t have lasted long if it had happened at all.”
“Why do you believe that this joining would not have taken place?”
“Deloris and her family were extreme purists, there was no way possible that they would have allowed their only daughter to marry any less. Father didn’t know I knew of it but I had heard far too many arguments between my parents while growing up not to know that my actual mother was the muggle woman that was hired as a private tutor for my sisters until they were old enough to attend school.”
“Mr. Lupin, in your opinion was Miss Umbridge in anyway responsible for Miss Lightpaws’ accident?”
Remus briefly closed his eyes then looked in the direction of the magistrate questioning him focusing on the space behind him he knew Dannie sat and stated, “The Deloris Umbridge I knew in school refused to show any consideration towards anyone who was not only a pureblood but did not believe the same as her. What she was capable of doing today or how her beliefs are I cannot guess. I do know that between the time that Mooney accidentally bit Dannie and the time we arrived in London were some of the happiest days of my life. She continued to wear the ring I gave her, we spoke of having more children, and we spent every possible moment together. She was strong, for her to risk her own life then it would have had to have been a situation that she saw no other way out of.”
“Don’t you think that her being forced to change into a werewolf every month for the rest of her life would have been such an ordeal that she felt there was no other way of escaping?” Mcnair asked.
“No, with our connection I would have definatly known if she was unhappy.”
“And you expect us to believe what you say were her emotions? There’s no way you could have known how she felt.”
“She’s my life-mate, I knew every emotion she felt from the time she took her away up until everything went blank.” Remus growled, “Everyone keeps calling this place she was at a Safehouse. Since when does one feel nothing but anger, pain, confusion, hatred, and finally extreme fear in a place they are suppose to be safe? I said earlier that I couldn’t guess what Deloris was capable of but, if she had anything to do with the way Dannie was feeling during that time then yes I do believe that she was responsible for the accident.”
“Thank you Mr. Lupin, unfortunately it is going late so we’ll reconvene tomorrow morning at 0800.” the second magistrate stated before he gathered his notes and walked out the side door while the other one proceeded into his own chambers.
The bailiff then escorted Remus back to his holding cell while Tonks silently took Bria and Dannie back to their party that was still gathered in their waiting room. As soon as the door was closed Dannie sighed as she removed her hood. “You do realize you’re going to have to testify in front of Mcnair.” Tonks said and Dannie merely nodded.