The Rogue History of Magic Professor
* slight spoilers for the first epiosde of season 4 of Angel.
*~* The Rogue History of Magic Professor *~*
No one said anything after it seemed like Wesley was finished speaking.
It was eerily silent.
What could they say? He'd made a mistake, and the people who were supposed to be his dearest friends had abandoned him for it. Yes, it had been a VERY bad mistake but damn.
Tara was crying. Giles had moved over to comfort her. He was looking rather severe. Willow's jaw was clenched tight, as were her fists. Severus had a hand on her shoulder. Dawn had a hand to her mouth. She was staring at the floor looking like she was trying not to cry. Ron had sat down on a bed with Hermione. The bushy-haired Gryffindor was looking thoughtful, as if she was trying to work something out in her head. Her eyes were shining brightly with tears that could fall at any minute. Draco had taken a seat next to the still a bit shaky Lily. He'd draped one arm around her in a brotherly manner, and Lily was leaned into his side. Poppy Pomfrey was sniffling loudly and bustling about. Dumbledore was looking grave. Dawn reached out for Harry's hand. He took it in both of his.
Spike was pacing. "That sorry-arsed undead son of a bitch!"
"Spike, watch your mouth." Willow snapped.
"Oh like we've never heard the words son of a bitch. Hell, I've SAID it. Loads." Draco mumbled.
Willow turned and glared at him.
"I didn't mean to upset anyone." Wesley said in a resigned fashion.
Willow moved suddenly. She stalked across the room and enveloped him in a tight hug. "You're safe here. No judging, because who hasn't made a grievous error in the past. So what? Big deal."
When she pulled back, he wouldn't meet her eyes. Willow got the distinct feeling there was something else he had not told them. More than Angel and his son. More than the hunter Holtz and Justine. More than him getting his throat slit by Justine and then Angel trying to kill him when Wesley was only trying to do what he thought was the right thing. They'd all abandoned him for it. Willow couldn't imagine. Thank goodness the Scooby Gang stuck around when someone made a mistake. Otherwise the lot of them would have been left for dead several times over. How could Angel have been so heartless to Wesley? It pained her to think on it, as it obviously pained some of the others in the room.
"Willow's right." Giles said suddenly. "None of that matters. And if Angel isn't willing to stand by you, then we shall."
Wesley's face contorted a bit. It was as if he was almost overcome. Why on earth were THEY the ones who wanted to help him?
Dumbledore cleared his throat. "It was as I told you it would be, was it not?"
Wesley looked at him. "It was. Thank you."
"No need to thank me, Professor Wyndham-Pryce. Your own merits have gained the trust and forgiveness you seemed to be getting in this room. And some of them judge harshly."
Willow's brain was still spinning a bit. Miracle children. Texans. Portals. Cordelia as a half demon so her skull wouldn't explode. Darla being back and staking herself for her child. Said child dumping Angel in the ocean. Evil lawyers. Deep sea rescue. It was wild. Then again he'd probably be thrown a bit by all the stuff that happened in Sunnydale too.
"There's just one thing." Giles said. "How exactly did you find Angel?"
Wesley blushed and shifted a bit.
Spike cocked his head to the side. "Oh this must be good."
"Well, I sort of... kidnapped Justine and held her hostage in my closet."
"Wh-what?" Dawn said laughing.
"She had a bucket."
"Bloody hell!" Spike said. "You're really not joking. You locked the stupid bint up?"
"Chained, then locked. Yes."
Giles's jaw was dropped. "Good Lord."
Willow was blinking rapidly.
"You do know we just give detentions here." Ron said.
Hermione elbowed him as Draco and Lily tried to cover their snickering... badly. Harry and Dawn were grinning.
"Perhaps..." Dumbledore started. "Mr. Potter, Miss Summers, and Miss Rosenberg would like to rest a bit here. Visions and such can be quite tiring. Perhaps Professors Rosenberg and Maclay would like to rest a bit if Professors Giles and Snape can do without them."
"Of course." Giles said.
Snape sighed. "I suppose."
"And Professor Wyndham-Pryce, I could have your classes covered if you wish."
"Thank you, sir, but I would like to finish out the day."
"Excellent. Then perhaps Mr. Malfoy could let Misses Summers and Rosenberg know what they miss, and Mr. Weasley and Miss Granger could fill Mr. Potter in. And..."
His voice died off as a tawny ferret came running past him. It made a few squeaky noises before coming to run about on Dawn's lap.
"Gutterflower, what are you doing here? How did you get out?"
Harry snickered. "You have a pet ferret?"
Draco rolled his eyes. He could feel it coming.
Ron started snickering. Then the damnable ferret made it worse. She noticed Draco. With a delicate little strain of squeaks she rushed over to him, ran up his leg and across his chest to stand on his shoulder where she started messing with his ear.
Ron just lost it. He was laughing so hard he rolled right off the bed he'd been sitting on.
"Ron." Hermione hissed, though she was snickering a little herself.
"All right. That's quite enough." Giles said. He could tell Draco was getting irritated. "Let's get to class, those of us who are going."
Harry helped Dawn to her feet.
"Harry?" Hermione questioned.
"Going to class."
"Me too." Dawn said.
Lily started to get up.
Draco shoved her back into her bed a bit forcefully. "I don't think so, Rosenberg."
"Yes, Lily. Please stay here." Willow said as she started out the door.
Snape grabbed her arm. "And just WHERE do you think you're off to?"
"Severus-" She growled.
"I could bind you and carry you back to our room. You need rest. This worries me."
"You wouldn't dare."
His eyes flashed angrily. "Wouldn't I?"
She clenched her fists. Electricity crackled across them.
"What are you going to do with those?"
Willow looked down at her hands in horror. "I... I..."
"You just need rest."
"I need a lobotomy."
He chuckled a bit. "Let me take you back to the room?"
"All right." Willow said tiredly. Something was happening. She could feel it in every cell of her body.
Snape led Willow out of the infirmary. Harry, Dawn, and Draco followed with Gutterflower perched on Draco's shoulder. Ron was still tittering about the ferret as he and Hermione exited. She elbowed him one last time before the rounded the door frame.
Tara decided to try walking then. She stumbled and Wesley caught her.
"Perhaps you should stay here, Professor Maclay?"
Giles helped her back into a bed. "Yes, Tara. Please stay. Snape has already said he can make do without you today."
Tara sighed and resigned herself to the bed. She was feeling a bit tired. She'd had the most terrible nightmares the night before. She watched as Giles brushed some hair off of Lily's forehead in a rather affectionate manner. The girl was sulking about having to stay.
"Well, gentlemen." Dumbledore said. "Shall we?"
Spike cast a worried glance at Tara before he followed Dumbledore, Giles, and Wesley out.
She was wandering around the school. Tara looked up and saw the tower. Shadows moved within. Two separate shadows. Two.
"Figured it yet?"
She turned and looked at the man next to her. "I don't think I caught your name last time."
"Prolly cos I didn't throw it."
"Oh a giggler. Don't get many a'those." He grinned. "I'm Doyle."
"Well, sure, but I was being polite."
He snickered. "That's what I like 'bout ya."
Tara looked back at the tower and scowled. "I don't know."
"Ya will. Sooner then ya thin'."
Tara gasped and sat up.
*Is this seat taken?*
Remus jumped back. His hand was reached out for her. "I was just about to ask if you wanted to go to the staff meeting."
*Oh, this is nice. Just hangin' out. Just us girls. You like that sort of thing, don't you?*
"Are you all right?"
*Don't... make a sound.*
"You were talking in your sleep, Tara."
*Nah. They won't help you. I'd kill them. You know that.*
"You said evil crawls to us on silent paws with painted toenails."
Tara frowned. "Oh."
*You wanna make it all better?*
Tara flinched and pressed the heel of her hand to her temple.
"Are you sure you're all right?"
*Fine. Let's get crazy.*
"I'm fine." She lied. No need to tell him or anyone else that she thought she might be going a little crazy again.
"You sure, sweetheart? You look a little pale."
"I'm five by five."
"Shall we then?" He held out an arm to her. Remus was still looking at her a bit oddly. She was acting a little funny.
*It's dirty. It's all dirty. And all over me!*
Dumbledore was pacing. Tara and Remus were the last to arrive.
"Professor Maclay, you did not need to join us if you still felt ill."
Dumbledore leveled his gaze at her. Tara felt certain that he knew she was lying.
*I told the cat. And now I beg my mother sitting all alone.*
"I received a rather interesting owl earlier. As most of you are aware. Remus Lupin was a professor here at Hogwarts a few years ago, and due to the outing of his nature, he resigned."
Snape shifted a bit uncomfortably. 'Moody' was glaring at him.
"Huh?" Spike said.
Anya rolled her eyes. "The fact that he's a werewolf, bleach. Please keep up."
"Listen here, you-"
"Anya..." Giles said in a forcefully even tone. "Please don't."
"Fine." She looked at Dumbledore. "Sorry."
*All the light is gone.*
Tara gave a shiver. Sirius was looking at her intently with Mad-Eye's 'mad' eye.
"I received my first letter that threatened the removal of a child for allowing a werewolf to teach here."
"Well, you just tell them to blow it out their buttholes." Anya said firmly.
Everyone looked at her. Spike started snickering and tried to turn it into a cough. It just sounded like he was getting the giggles about getting choked. His snickering got Hagrid to chuckling a bit, earning Spike a harsh glare from Giles.
"Or something with less of a rectal theme."
"Well, I can see Miss Emerson feels strongly about not seeing Remus go."
Remus looked at Anya with a bewildered expression on his face. She'd only known him for a few days. He was willing to bet it had more to do with his daughter than him. Or perhaps he was wrong.
"I'm gonna have to agree with demongirl, here. Not about the butthole thing-"
"Will you kindly stop using that word?" Giles snapped.
Willow giggled a bit causing Wesley, who was sitting on the side of her that Severus was not on, to snicker a bit as well. Dumbledore's eyes were glowing with mischief. McGonagall's were rolling in exasperation.
"Fine, Rupes. No more butthole."
Professor Flitwick tittered with giggles.
"Anyhow, I agree. Bollocks to them if they can't handle it. So what if he's a mutt. I'm a non bite-y vampire, and I like mowing the lawn. I enjoy having my whiskey with the half giant here. If they think they're gonna come up in here and treat one of the professors like a bastard at a family reunion they've another bloody thought coming!"
Sirius snorted with laughter. It sounded horrible through Moody's form. As much as he hated to admit it, he was starting to like Spike. The vampire's dedication to Remus was a thing to endear him. Plus he was rather protective over Tara. From the way Harry told it, Spike had been like that even before he knew Tara was of his bloodlines.
"None of us wanted you to resign in the first place, Remus." McGonagall said.
Wesley cleared his throat. "You seem a nice enough fellow. I have no problem with working alongside a werewolf. And we've two professors on staff here that have at least two years of experience dealing with subduing a wild wolf, let alone one the is tamed a bit by a Wolfsbane potion."
"You know about-" Snape started.
"I'm a booknerd. I read quite a lot. Even obscure potion texts."
Spike snorted. "Thank you, Giles Number Two."
"Don't start, Spike." Anya said.
"What? If I don't pick on the boy, he won't feel welcome. It was decided earlier, wasnit? He's one of us now... Mr. Rogue Demon Hunter."
Sirius snorted again. It was sort of true. The more Spike picked at you, the more it seemed he liked you.
"Demon hunter?" Anya gasped.
"Well, not anymore."
"Well, like it matters." Anya said.
"Uh, hello, you ARE a demon." Willow said. "Of the vengeance variety."
"Not anymore." Anya said with a broad smile on her face.
"Albus worked it out. D'Hoffryn was pissing in his panties. It was very impressive."
"You're human again?" Giles said in shock.
"Yes." Anya said smiling widely. "It's much more fun this time too because, hey, check me out." She whipped a wand out of her robes. "Wingardium leviosa!" She said as she swished and flicked. The coffee cup near Giles's hand levitated.
"Anya!" Giles said as he grabbed his cup out of the air.
"Pretty cool, huh?"
"All these little cuts and bruises... just bring out the mother in me." Tara said as she started laughing maniacally. "I see dead people."
Everyone looked at her in shock. Wesley dropped the coffee cup that had paused halfway to his mouth when she started speaking.
"Wesley?" Willow said getting up.
He was shaking at staring at Tara oddly. Everyone else was on their feet. The air was suddenly heavy in the room.
"How ya doin', Princess Margaret?" Tara asked in a distorted voice.
Wesley stumbled. "How?"
"In my mind's eye I see three. One of evil. One of power. And one of protection by thee. One who's eyed. One of deity. One of dark. But all of pride."
"Tara?" Willow whispered. "Baby?"
Tara looked at her. There was a distorted look on her face. She laughed darkly and brushed two fingers across Willow's cheek. Then Willow gasped and seized up.
Willow fell to her knees as Tara's eyes rolled up in her head. Sirius caught Tara. He was looking at Remus in alarm.
Snape looked at Sirius. "You give yourself away, sir."
But Willow was looking at Wesley. "You didn't come here alone. Something... someone came with you."
Wesley gasped. "What?"
"Don't pretend you don't know what I'm talking about... watcher."
Wesley looked at her. He glanced at Dumbledore. Should he say it with the whole staff there? They were making a solid front for Remus Lupin. Who's to say they would support his 'visitor' being there? Dumbledore nodded at him. The staff could be trusted. They'd stand by him.
It was nice to know that no matter who or what you were... your decisions, no matter how foolish, would be supported or at the very least understood.
He had definitely picked the right place to hide.