“The stranger was wearing an extremely shabby set of
wizard's robes which had been darned in several places. He looked ill and
exhausted. Though he seemed quite young, his light-brown hair was flecked with
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 5 The Dementor pg.
“Professor Snape has very kindly concocted a potion for me,”
he said. “I have never been much of a potion-brewer and this one is particularly
complex.” He picked up the goblet and sniffed it. “Pity sugar makes it useless,”
he added, taking a sip and shuddering.
“Why -?” Harry began. Lupin looked at him and
answered the unfinished question.
“I've been feeling a bit off-colour,” he said. “This
potion is the only thing that helps. I am very lucky to be working alongside
Professor Snape; there aren't many wizards who are up to making it.”
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 8 Flight of the Fat Lady pg.
“Ron made a valiant effort to get up again, but fell back
with a whimper of pain. Lupin made towards him, looking concerned, but Ron
gasped, “Get away from me, werewolf!”
Lupin stopped dead. Then, with an obvious effort, he
turned to Hermione and said, “How long have you known?”
“Ages,” Hermione whispered. “Since I did Professor
“He'll be delighted,” said Lupin coolly. “He set that
essay hoping someone would realise what my symptoms meant. Did you check the
lunar chart and realise that I was always ill at the full moon? Or did you
realise that the Boggart changed into the moon when it saw me?”
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 17 Cat, Rat and Dog pg. 253
“My transformations in those days were - were terrible. It
is very painful to turn into a werewolf. I was separated from humans to bite, so
I bit and scratched myself instead. The villagers heard the noise and the
screaming and thought they were hearing particularly violent spirits. Dumbledore
encouraged the rumour... even now, when the house has been silent for years, the
villagers don't dare approach it...”
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 18 Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot
and Prongs pg. 259
“Harry could see Lupin's silhouette. He had gone rigid. Then
his limbs began to shake.
“Oh my -” Hermione gasped. “He didn't take his potion
tonight! He's not safe!”
“Run,” Sirius whispered. “Run! Now!”
But Harry couldn't run. Ron was chained to Pettigrew
and Lupin. He leapt forwards but Sirius caught him around the chest and threw
“Leave it to me - RUN!”
There was a terrible snarling noise. Lupin's head was
lengthening. So was his body. His shoulders were hunching. Hair was sprouting
visibly on his face and hands, which were curling into clawed paws.
Crookshanks's fur was on end again, he was backing away -
As the werewolf reared, snapping its long jaws,
Sirius disappeared from Harry's side. He had transformed. The enormous,
bear-like dog bounded forwards. As the werewolf wrenched itself free of the
manacle binding it, the dog seized it about the neck and pulled it backwards,
away from Ron and Pettigrew.”
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 20 The Dementor's Kiss pgs.
Remus Lupin (sometime Professor of Defence Against the Dark Arts and friend of
Harry's father) is the series' best example of a werewolf character. When he
makes his first appearance, it is obvious that he has had a hard life; despite
being pretty young, he looks old and tired. The reasons for this become apparent
as the story develops. First of all, as he tells Harry himself, the fact that he
transforms into a werewolf every month is physically painful. When he is a
werewolf he is not himself; he cannot control his actions, although he is
vaguely aware of what he is doing. He has to separate himself from other people
during these times, and tortures himself in the absence of having no one upon
which to inflict pain.
When he is not a werewolf, Lupin knows he must keep his condition a secret from
others, otherwise he will be (and is) treated as if he is sub-human. As
werewolves are tracked by the Ministry of Magic, he finds it incredibly
difficult to find a job; even with the invention of the Wolfsbane potion (which
controls the transformation to the point where he retains his faculties and is
able to lock himself away as a relatively harmless wolf). Thus, Lupin is poor,
underfed and wears old, darned clothes. He finds it difficult to be close to
people; firstly because he is afraid of accidentally hurting them, and secondly
because of the way he has been treated.
As the series progresses this becomes more pronounced, especially in his
troublesome relationship with Nymphadora Tonks; it takes longer for him to
accept her love and agree to marry her, and even then he is wracked with guilt
over the possibility that his children may be inflicted with lycanthropy as he
is. Later in the books we are also introduced to a second werewolf character,
Fenrir Greyback (who, incidentally, is the one responsible for Lupin's
lycanthropy). Greyback is exactly the opposite of Lupin in terms of character;
thoroughly evil, he uses his condition to torture and kill others on purpose.
His appearance is wolf-like even when it is not full moon; and as you can
imagine, this means he lives 'underground' and is the figure of fear that the
stigmatism attached to being a werewolf is deserved by. He is rarely seen at
all, and does not function at all in wizarding society.
If you are considering a werewolf character, it is recommended that you make
your character more like Lupin than Greyback. Lupin is an ordinary human
struggling with his condition; Greyback is a monster, and as the Dark Lord is
dead, reasons for a Greyback-like character to be seen are slim. A Greyback
character would almost certainly be hunted by the Ministry, whereas a Lupin
character would be able to (in some form) interact with others. It is important
to remember that in no way would your character be happy about the fact that
they are a werewolf, as the condition has severe physical and emotional effects.
Useful Links to Information About Werewolves
The HP Lexicon
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