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Chapter 5

Bridge of Secrets


Lupin and Mika made their way onto the bridge and stopped in the middle. There was no one else here. At last they could speak in private.

“Now, where were we? Oh yes,” Mika’s voice softened. “You were going to tell me your deep, dark secret.”

Lupin looked out over the valley below them. The faint moonlight was glimmering off the surface of the loch. Normally such a setting would have been considered romantic, but the moon held a special fear for Remus J. Lupin.

“Ah. I was hoping you’d forgotten about that,” he finally said, his raspy voice soft in the chilly night air.

“Oh, well if you had rather not say anything, I quite understand. After all, we’ve only just met. But I have kept many secrets in my time. I assure you that you can trust me implicitly.” She leaned slightly over the railing and looked at him through the ancient strut work of the bridge. “I might be able to help…”

Lupin’s eyes shot to her. “Help? What do you mean?”

“Find a cure. A scientific cure. I am sure there is one. Just a matter of doing the right research.”

“Then… you know already,” his eyes fell.

“I prefer to hear it from you,” was all she said.

He sighed deeply. “What’s there to tell? I was bitten when I was a very small child. My parents did all they could but there was no cure. Since then the wolfsbane potion has been developed and that helps but it’s not always successful. Besides, it tastes awful,” he allowed himself a small chuckle.

“When you were speaking about loneliness earlier, I know how you feel. Though I am alone because of what I am. Some hate me, most are afraid. But all wish to persecute me. I don’t really fit in; never have.”

A breeze wafted in and Mika allowed it to fill the space between them. Slowly she drew nearer. “We all have a need to belong, Remus. A longing to be loved for who we are no matter our faults.” She looked into his sad blue eyes. “I am not afraid,” she whispered.

For the first time he genuinely smiled, his pervading sadness lifted for a fleeting moment. Suddenly he couldn’t believe that this beautiful, mysterious being was out here, giving all her attention to him. Remus John Lupin… nothing but a monster who had nothing to offer but loneliness and isolation… and death. A frown shadowed his face and he shook his head slowly.

“Why would you want to help me even if you could?” he muttered.

Mika was confused but she sensed that something was troubling him; she just couldn’t put her finger on what it could be. “Because, I can’t bear the thought of you suffering any more. I can’t promise anything, but I would like to try. Please?”

Her eyes were captivating. A deep violet glistening in the starlight and with what seemed to be an inner light, they drew him in. How could she be anything but sincere? He just wondered why.

“Allright. How do we go about this ‘research’?” he said finally, his academic side kicking in.

Mika smiled. “Well, first I’d like to ask you a few questions about your ‘condition’. Specific points that might help me pinpoint the exact cause and effects. Once we understand what makes it happen, then we can begin to counteract it.”

“Makes sense.” Lupin sighed. His being a werewolf was not something he liked talking about. But if it could help…

“Tell you what, let’s meet up sometime soon and we can begin work on it. I’ll prepare some questions, you try and think of anything you know or can find out that might help. I’ll do a search in the TARDIS databanks and see what information I can find there. Chances are some other civilisation has already found a cure. We should be so lucky!”

The enthusiasm in her voice was infectious. Lupin couldn’t help but feel somewhat hopeful that perhaps this strange alien from another world could very well help him. “Do you really think you can find something?”

“We can but try,” said Mika, her smile bright even in the pervading darkness.

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