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Collision by CallingMidnight

Format: Novel
Chapters: 39
Word Count: 112,524
Status: COMPLETED

Rating: 15+
Warnings: Mild Language, Mild Violence, Scenes of a Sexual Nature

Genres: Drama, Romance
Characters: Harry, Lupin, Sirius, James, Lily, OC
Pairings: James/Lily, Remus/OC, Sirius/OC

First Published: 12/21/2004
Last Chapter: 07/11/2005
Last Updated: 09/09/2005

Summary:
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting BEAUTIFUL new banner by RecklessAbandon!!!! For years, Heather's only remaining relatives ignored her, leaving her in an orphanage...until, when she turned 17, for some unknown reason they saw fit to send her to Hogwarts for a final year of schooling. At fist, Heather was nervous about meeting her only family. But she quickly realized that she needn't be afriad...she should be terrified. Her relatives were worse than she had remembered. Especially her cousin, Lucius Malfoy.


Chapter 1: Meeting the Malfoys
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Chapter One~*~Meeting The Malfoys

Heather got out of the car, her large blue eyes dancing with trepidation. She looked around her. Her mouth nearly dropped open, and her heart-beat quickened. Looming before her was the most incredible house she had ever seen. It was slightly gloomy, but otherwise very grand. All around were flower beds, though they were not bright with yellows, oranges, or pinks. They were dripping with dark reds, blacks, velvety purples, and they seemed to be watching her. As she looked away from the flowers, she could have sworn they sighed in disgust.

The large stone mansion beckoned her forward, tempting her over to some unknown darkness. She took a deep breath. She had expected this, but had hoped that the house of her cousin wouldn’t be so dark. She had, in fact, only met her cousin once, and he had seemed rather disagreeable. It was as if he had only put up with her because she was related to him by blood…pure blood. Yes, Lucius Malfoy was obviously not a person to be trifled with, and his father Damien, Heather’s uncle, had seemed just as cold, distant and snobbish. Her Aunt Cordelia didn’t talk very much. Heather suspected that Damien did all of the talking, rule-making, and was most likely the head of the house. That didn't leave room for Cordelia to have much of a personality. Heather wasn't sure if her show of indifference relieved her or unnerved her.

Heather silently chided herself. She had only met the family once and already she was planning their whole life-style out for them. Perhaps she was reading too much into things. Just because most of the Malfoy family was obsessed with the Dark-Arts and pure blood didn’t mean they all were. Look at her! She was a Malfoy, and she wasn't like that.

She picked up her small trunk, which was very worn and old. She wasn’t used to pampering, although you would think that somebody from the Malfoy family would be. Her father had joined Lord Voldemort when she was very young, and had been killed. Her mother had been very upset, and clammed up. She left Heather at a wizard orphanage, and moved away. Heather had never saught to find her mother. Unlike other orphans, she wasn't curious about the woman who had left her to fend for herself. She didn't want to see who had abandoned her. She didn't want to face a past she'd rather escape....

At the orphanage, she had been schooled. Just recently, however, she had been unexpectedly taken in by her Aunt and Uncle. She hadn’t even begun to ponder why, all of a sudden, they might want her. She didn't think to ask herself why all those years, they had never offered to save her from a life of poverty...until now.

Leaving behind her musings, she walked up to the large, old wooden door. She looked around, and saw an old fashioned knocker. Awkwardly she slammed the glaring metal ring into the wood. She stood back, composing herself; a first impression was everything. She waited several minutes, and nothing happened. Again she pounded on the door. Finally, after many minutes of frustration, a very young looking House-Elf opened the door. Heather smiled at him.

“Hello there, I’m Heather. I’ve come from the orphanage,” she said brightly. The House-Elf nodded twitchily. Heather frowned. “Are you alright?” She had honestly never seen a live House-Elf. She only seen pictures of them in books, and honestly, they hardly did these creatures justice; this little creature was much more bizarre than any picture.

The House-Elve's already bulbous eyes widened, making it look as if they were nearly bigger than his whole head. He put his hands over his large nose, and his eyes watered. Heather didn’t know what to do? What had she done? “I’m really sorry! I didn’t mean to upset you,” she said hurriedly. Wonderful! Just wonderful! She had already messed up and she hadn’t even met her relatives yet! The House-Elf continued to sob.

“You isn’t offending me, Miss. I am just so happy you cares about me, miss. You shouldn’t do so. If they catches you they will be angry,” the Elf said. Heather didn’t understand at all.

“I’m afraid I don’t see what you mean. Who would catch me and be angry at me for being nice to you?”

“You is not supposed to be nice to me. I am but an Elf, Miss,” he admitted.

“Do you not want me to be nice?” Heather asked, kneeling so as to be on his level. He looked at her sadly.

“I want what my master wants,” he said firmly. “I would be being a bad Elf, Miss, if I didn’t.”

“Well, I can’t see how I could possibly be mean to you. So I’m afraid you’re just going to have to put up with my affection,” Heather said jokingly, trying to coax a smile out of the creature. She didn’t know why, but she felt she could connect with him, in a way. She was trying to feel the way the Malfoys did about Muggle-Borns, but was having troubles. She honestly despised bigotry, and that was what she feared her cousin would expect of her. This Elf seemed to be trying to think the way he felt he should think too. But was obviously having difficulties. Heather thought that his circumstances were less agreeable than hers. At least she wasn’t a slave.

“Thank you, Miss,” the Elf whispered, looking around as if making sure nobody was listening.

“You’re welcome,” Heather said, whispering also. She smiled then. “What’s your name?”

“Dobby, Miss. I am new at work here. I don’t think they likes me very much,” he said sadly. Heather smiled encouragingly.

“I doubt…” but she was cut off as Dobby lifted off the ground. For a split second she thought he had levitated himself. But as she looked up, she saw that he was being held off his feet by a large hand clutching the pillow-case that clothed his body.

“Who said you could talk to our guests?” a clean, crisp voice asked. He pronounced the words precisely, as if measured with great care. Dobby squealed in fear.

“I’m s-sorry, Sir! Please, I was just…” he tried to choke out, the pillow-case apparently tightening around his neck. Again he was interrupted.

“Did I tell you to speak?” the voice sneered. Heather snapped out of her reverie, barely able to take in the fact that Dobby was being so mistreated.

“Let him go!” Heather said furiously. She stood up and saw that she was confronting her cousin. Hating herself for it, she cowered slightly, noticing how much taller he was than she. She looked away, losing some of her nerve. “Put him down,” she repeated, trying to sound as brave as she had earlier.

“Why should I do that?” Lucius hissed snidely. Heather glared now, taking a deep breath to glare him in the eye.

“Just do it,” she said, seeing Dobby’s face turning rather red from lack of oxygen. Lucius stared at her for quite some time, and Heather stared right back, hoping that her fear of him didn’t show. The truth was that he terrified her. Lucius laughed softly at her, but threw Dobby on the ground.

Heather moved to go help him up, but Lucius laid a firm hand on her shoulder. She tried to pry it off her, glaring the whole while, but when she next looked back to where Dobby had been, he had gone. He must have scurried away.

“Why did you have to treat him that way?” she demanded hotly, very aware of the fact that things weren't going the way she'd planned them at all.

“Because he is just a House-Elf,” Lucius said simply. Heather just stared at him, realizing that there was no arguing with this boy. She took the time to get a better look at him. He was very lean, tall, and muscular from little charms he must have put on himself. It couldn't be Quidditch that toned his body, as he didn't play beater, and she doubted he would degrade himself to do anything so low as exercising.

He had white-blonde hair, and very pale skin. He was the same age as her, seventeen, and might have been considered handsome if not for the permanant sneer that marred his face. His cheek bones were higher than average, but for some reason, that only seemed to compliment his sharp nose and icy gray eyes. She let out a short, pent up sigh, rather disappointed that his appearance didn't show the ugliness within.

“Dare I ask what you could possibly be talking about with my House-Elf?” he finally said, breaking the silence.

“No,” she snapped, feeling that it was none of his business. He raised a sharp, finely curved eyebrow.

“I see,” he said. “Well…welcome, I suppose.” Heather nodded stiffly, still very incensed. “Come, my mother is in the drawing room,” he said after awhile. Heather nodded, and she followed him.

As they walked, she realized that she could easily get lost in this house. It was amazing, and yet, very spooky. It was quiet and empty. Most of the rooms they passed were either very rich with dark, wooden furniture, or completely bare, and dungeon-like. After what seemed like a thousand turns and staircases, Lucius bade her enter a room. Eyeing Lucius suspiciously, she opened the door.

As soon as the door was open, a wave of music filled her ears and the empty hallway she stood in. She entered the room, followed by Lucius.

Looking around, Heather noticed that this room was bathed mostly in deep reds and burgundies. The curtains were drawn wide, inviting the sunlight, yet the room was still dark and depressing. Heather didn’t blame the sun for its neglect upon this room, it was rather creepy, and very 18th century. She scanned her surroundings and saw a large walnut grand piano tucked in a corner by the window.

Somebody was playing a lonesome, yet very pretty ballad. Heather craned her neck around, and was rather surprised to see Cordelia sitting on the ornately decorated bench. Her eyes were closed tightly, as if savoring the sound of each note, holding it in her mind for as long as possible. Her body swayed as she dove headfirst into the song she played.

Heather chanced a glance at Lucius and saw that he was leaning against the doorframe, looking extremely bored and examining his nails, waiting for his mother to finish. Heather, however, was not bored at all. She loved playing piano, and had for the past ten years. Of course, she had been confined to a small keyboard at her previous residence, but she still had found it enjoyable, always pretending that the keyboard sounded just a wonderful as a thousand grand pianos.

Her ears pricked with curiosity, however. This song was utterly unfamliar. It had the hints of Debussy, while parts of it grew as grand as if it was Rachmaninoff. Then, as Cordelia slowed consierably, Heather noticed a trace of emotion...was it Chopin?

After several minutes, Cordelia finished up, and slowly turned her neck to stare at Heather, looking her up and down.

“Hello,” Heather said, trying to smile sweetly. She had already messed up with Lucius, but maybe she could try and befriend Cordelia? Her hopes were dashed when all she received was a nod.

“Take her up to her room, Lucius,” Cordelia said in a rather husky voice. Lucius stared.

“Do it yourself,” Lucius yawned, and then left. Heather stared at Cordelia, wondering if Lucius would be scolded for such disrespectful behavior. Her mouth fell open whan all Cordelia did was nod. If Heather had ever said anything like that to one of the adults at the orphanage, she would have certainly been screamed at, perhaps even slapped across the face.

“Come on, then,” Cordelia said stiffly, getting up.

“I really enjoyed that song. You’re a wonderful pianist,” Heather said, trying to strike up conversation. Cordelia nodded yet again. “What song was it? I don’t think I’ve ever heard it before."br />

“One of my own compositions,” Cordelia replied uninvitingly.

“Really? That was amazing! I play too, you know. I’ve played for ten years. I love to play. Maybe you could give me some pointers some time?” Heather asked excitedly.

“You are welcome to play the piano anytime you wish. But do not play too loudly. It gives Damien a headache,” Cordelia said coldly. Heather nodded.

“Yeah, ok. Thanks,” she said, realizing that talking wasn’t getting them anywhere. The rest of the way up to her room, she remained quiet. Finally, they reached a large door, and Cordelia beckoned her inside.

“Your Hogwarts supplies are on the bed,” Cordelia said.

“Hogwarts?” Heather asked before turning the door knob.

“It is the wizarding school you will be attending now, along with Lucius,” Cordelia said curtly. Heather remembered reading somewhere about Hogwarts. She remembered that there were four houses, and the Headmaster was Albus Dumbledore, one of the most famous wizards, next to You-Know-Who. Heather thought of something then. What house was Lucius in? Heather voiced her question.

“Lucius is in Slytherin. You will be too. All Malfoy’s are in Slytherin. It is the most honorable of houses. No mud-bloods are permitted, so you will be in good company.” Heather tried to hide her disgust. She hoped she wasn’t sorted into Slytherin. She didn’t want any part of all the prejudice and bigotry that house most-likely hosted.

Deciding to hold her tongue, Heather turned and walked in her room, and it was as if she had walked into a dream. This room was much lighter, and the walls were cream colored, sprinkled with pictures of angles, some relatives, and large paintings, watercolors. The carpet was a rather deep shade of blue, and a large gold rug adorned the floor. In the middle of the room was a large, squishy looking bed, with ivory bedclothes. She smiled, as the window had been opened and sunlight poured through.

“This room is wonderful! I simply…” but she realized as she turned around, that Cordelia had gone, and she was talking to thin air. She didn’t really mind; thin air was friendlier.

She went and sat on the bed, setting her trunk next to her Hogwarts supplies. She sorted through them, pulling out a cauldron and examining it. She saw her robes, and pulled them out. She slipped them on, and walked over to a full-length mirror in the corner. She scrutinizing her reflection.

She had always thought herself as an average type person, with sparkling, Malfoy-blue eyes and her mother's dark brown hair. Her hair was the only physical trait she'd recieved from her mother's side of the family. It was curly, and waist-length. She normally let it sway down her back, unless she was doing something active, then she would pull it up into a curly ponytail. She had a pale complexion, and soft, slightly pouty lips. She had dark lashes, and they outlined her eyes, bringing out their color more effectively. Being somewhat short, and very thin, she gave off the appearance of being very delicate, as was most of the Malfoy family.

She tried to picture herself in a large crowd of bustling students, rushing to classes, but found it difficult. She had always been a loner, rather confined. She couldn’t possibly imagine having friends, and certainly didn’t want to hang around with her cousin’s friends. They were sure to be just as arrogant as Lucius. She sighed, closing her eyes, and tried to relieve some of the stress she was feeling.

She walked over to her bed, and heaved all of her Hogwarts supplies onto the floor. She thought about being sorted into different houses. She wondered how it was done; did they test you on your skills? If that was the case, she wasn’t sure she could pass any tests. She got under the covers of the bed, pulling them up to her chin. She stared at the ceiling, as if hoping somebody would drop from it and take her away.

She tried desperately to cheer herself up. It wasn’t that bad. She only had to stay here a week before she could go to Hogwarts. She smiled, holding on to that thought. Only a week…and then she could leave, and maybe even start a new life…


Preview for Chapter Two~*~Assumptions: Sirius smiled devilishly. Never had he been so pleased to cushion somebody’s fall before. He had been prepared to give the person a piece of his mind, that is, until he realized that the person was the most beautiful creature he had ever seen. He stared into her innocent blue eyes, they showed her entire personality. He almost snorted; this girl wore her heart on her sleeve. His first thought was that it would be easy for somebody to toy with her emotions; his second was that he would never let that happen.

Chapter 2: Assumptions
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Chapter Two~*~Assumptions



Heather laughed lightly at a joke her mother was telling her. She was so happy. She picked up her sandwich-grilled cheese, her favorite-and bit into it.

“No, wait until your father gets home!” her mother scolded, still smiling. Heather mocked starvation, in her playful, five-year-old sense of humor. Her mother laughed, and together they started cracking up. They were interrupted, however, by a knock on the front door. Heather’s mother frowned slightly, and went to look out the window. Heather watched her face as she frowned in concern at somebody standing outside in the rain. She rushed to open the clean white door.

“Who is it mommy?”

“Shush, Heather,” her mother whispered harshly. Heather went silent. Her mother opened the door with slightly shaking hands. “Hello, Mr. Goyle.”

“Evening, Arvilla” Mr. Goyle said sharply to her mother, pushing his way into the house. He took off his hat and coat, throwing the sopping wet articles on the couch, staining the furniture. Heather frowned, this man was bad news. How little she had known then.

“To what do we owe this visit?” her mother said, looking slightly put out at his intrusion. Mr. Goyle cleared his throat and went to sit down at the kitchen table beside Heather. Heather, seeing his horrible, flabby face, got up and ran behind her mother. “Heather, that was rude. Apologize!”

“No need. I bear some sad news anyway. Your husband is dead,” Goyle said, helping himself to Heather’s grilled cheese. A horrible silence filled the entire house-hold, except for Goyle’s large, smacking lips.

“I…you must be mistaken,” Arvilla said. Goyle shook his head.

“A couple of Aurors got him. Just a few hours ago,” he assured. "Sorry for your loss," he said, looking anything but. Heather’s mother shook her head, and then slowly, she began to fade. Her form started to deteriorate.

“Mommy!” Heather cried out, clutching at her mother’s hand. “Don’t leave me!” she began to wail, but soon, her mother was gone forever, never to return, and she was left clutching the air where her mother’s hand had been.

“Sorry about that,” Goyle said, though his voice had changed. Heather turned back to him to see that Goyle was gone, and Lucius Malfoy was in his place. “You can come join us now. My family. Your family.”

“No! Your kind did this to her! You killed my mother!!” Heather yelled furiously. Lucius stood up then, towering above her. He seemed to fill up the entire room.

“You will join us! You will join me and my family! You will become what you are destined to be!” Lucuis yelled, and suddenly his head seemed to multiply so that he was shoting at her, his heads floating about the room, all looking down at her. Heather dropped to the ground, crying. This was a dream. She needed to wake up!

“NO!” Heather screamed, and she ran out the kitchen door. But as soon as she did, her feet slipped, and she began to fall. She waited to hit solid ground, but it never happened. She cried helplessly. Lucius was above her, screaming for her to return at once, as she stared up at him, falling through her own misery.

“Heather! Heather! HEATHER!”


At once Heather sat up, her heart beating terribly fast. Sweat dripped down her face, and she was breathing heavily. She was crying.

“Get up. It’s time to go,” a cold voice said from the doorway. Heather leapt out of bed then, the voice scaring her. She balled her hands into fists, ready to take on whoever it was. She looked and saw Lucius Malfoy leaning against the doorframe, smiling amusedly. Heather was shaking slightly, very cold now that she was out of the covers.

“Were you calling my name?” she asked, rather nervously, putting down her fists. Lucius raised a brow.

“Not that I’m aware of,” he said coolly.

"But you...in my...dream..." she trailed off. That had been a dream.... She hated dreams. Especially ones that messed with the very few memories she had of her past. She remembered Lucius was still there when he gave a snort of laughter at her earlier remark.

"Dreaming about me, are we?" he said idly. She sneered.

"Yes, you were being murdered by hippogriffs," she snapped.

Seemingly getting bored of this banter, he studied her sleeping attire. It was definitely not the normal wizarding wear. She had on shorts and a baggy tee-shirt. An outfit Lucius had only seen on Muggles. “Why are you wearing Muggle clothes?” he asked, his eyes narrowing slightly.

“Because they’re comfortable,” she said stiffly, blushing slightly. She felt burnt under his penetrating gaze.

“Don’t ever wear those again,” he said.

“Fine, I’ll sleep naked,” she said boldly. “And sometimes, if I’m having a weird dream, I sleep walk.” She saw his face contort in confusion. She smiled, realizing he didn’t know if she was joking or not. He immediately controlled himself.

“Well, fine. But if you do sleep walk, and decide to go naked, I’m sure all of those Slytherin boys will be sure to guide you back to bed.” He laughed at her disgusted face.

“Who says I’ll be in Slytherin?” she asked, trying to think of something that would fluster him. This did the trick. His sneering smile vanished and was replaced by determination.

“I do. You WILL be in Slytherin. All Malfoys are,” he said, and before Heather could reply, he left her alone. She sighed in relief. How she hated that guy. He always made her so uncomfortable. She looked around. She had hoped to say goodbye to Dobby before she left for her new school, but she hadn’t seen him since her first day here.

She wondered if Lucius had done something to him, but she shivered. She didn’t want to think about the Malfoys anymore. It as bad enough having to live in their house this whole week, let alone watch as they mistreated their House-Elves. She quickly went and shut her door so she could change into her new school robes in privacy.

When she was finished dressing she put all of her new Hogwarts supplies into her trunk, squeezing them in so they fit. She went downstairs, very nervous, not only because of the disturbing dream she had had, but because she was about to plunge into a brand new school where everything would be completely new to her, where as the other seventh years would be used to the way things worked.

When she entered the kitchen she saw Damien, Lucius’ father. In truth, she had only seen him during meal-times throughout the week, and he only spoke to her when he seemed to be trying to convince her of something. The entire family seemed to be assuring her every second that pure-bloods were better than mud-bloods, and Slytherin was the best house, and a load of other stuff Heather found quite suffocating. She pretended to agree with what Damien said only because she was too afraid to stand up to him. A fact that she despised herself for.

“Good morning, everyone,” Heather said brightly, trying to lighten the mood slightly. Nobody answered her, and she would have wondered if she had said it loud enough, except that Cordelia had stopped in her cooking breakfast to stare. Heather smiled at her, but Cordelia looked hurriedly aware, glancing side-ways at her husband. Heather had gotten the feeling that Cordelia wasn’t all that bad, but was terrified of Damien. Heather at times had felt sorry for her. The only time Heather had ever seen her slightly happy was when she was playing the piano.

Heather sat down opposite Lucius, who was staring at her in her new school robes. Heather glared at him, and then looked away rather nervously. She hated her cousin.

After a very stressed breakfast, with Cordelia bustling around constantly, rushing here and there to get anything that Lucius or Damien asked of her Damien stood up, and, without warning, Apparated. Heather stared.

“Where did he go? Doesn’t he have to take us to the train station?” Heather asked wildly. Lucius rolled his eyes.

“He went to work. And he won’t be taking us to the train station, we’ll be Apparating by ourselves,” he said as if talking to a three year-old. Heather stared.

“Apparate? But…I’ve never been there! How am I supposed to Apparate to a place I can’t picture in my mind?” Heather said, but just as she said it, Lucius pulled out a picture of a train station.

“There, now you have a picture, see you there,” Lucius said and then he was gone. Heather stared in shock. She looked pleadingly at Cordelia, but she received only a cold stare of expectation. Mustering up all of her determination, she picked up her trunk and focused on the picture. Then she closed her eyes and imagined herself standing in that station next to the Hogwarts train. She felt herself being pulled forward, and then, next second, she was hurled onto the ground, trunk and all. She was surprised, however, when she didn’t hit hard ground. Something had cushioned her fall. She blinked and looked around. Well, she had made it. People in Hogwarts robes were bustling around like crazy, rushing to get a compartment.

“Excuse me, but would you mind getting off me?” a deep, rich voice asked sarcastically. Heather jumped, and looked down. She was lying on a person!

“Oh! I'm so sorry! I can’t believe…please I didn’t mean…” she stuttered out, leaping up. As she stood up, so did the person she had landed on. Her eyes widened; he was the most handsome guy she had ever seen! He had dark brown locks, rather longer than was average, but not too long. It was slightly wavy and hung to a little below his ears. A forelock constantly seemed to fall in his eyes, and he was currently brushing it back irritably. He had dark grey eyes, sparkling with amusement at the moment. Her apologies trailed off as she stared. She realized he must think her an idiot for staring so openly, but she couldn’t tear her gaze away.

Sirius smiled devilishly. Never had he been so pleased to cushion somebody’s fall before. He had been prepared to give the person a piece of his mind, that is, until he realized that the person was the most beautiful creature he had ever seen. He stared into her innocent blue eyes, they showed her entire personality. He almost snorted; this girl wore her heart on her sleeve. His first thought was that it would be easy for somebody to toy with her emotions; his second was that he would never let that happen.

Heather realized that they had been staring at each other for a very long time. Most unnatural. She tried to back away, but tripped over her trunk. She started falling backwards, but a large hand rested itself on her back, steadying her. Her entire body was shocked as if by a bolt of lightening. It started where his hand had touched her, coursing through the rest of her body, awakening feelings inside of her she didn’t know she had.

Sirius immediately pulled his hand away, also feeling the strange attraction. Of course, he had felt this feeling with hundreds of girls, but never like this. And he hadn’t even spoken to her yet! He decided to start.

“Are you alright?” he asked. She just nodded. What was wrong with him?! He was Sirius Black! Marauder, chick magnet, hottest guy in Hogwarts! Here he was unable to think of anything intelligent to say in front of this girl. This was definitely a first.

“Yeah, I’m fine. You?” she asked, her voice trying to sound light. He nodded.

“Never better. It’s not often a guy gets rammed into the Earth by an angel,” he said. Then he nearly threw up. Did he really just say that?! How corny! Sirius Black was never corny! “I’m Sirius Black,” he said, sticking his hand out eagerly. Heather took it.

“I’m Heather Malfoy,” she said. As soon as she had said her last name, however, he jerked his hand back, his face contorting in horror.

“You’re a Malfoy?!” he practically yelled. She closed her eyes. She should have expected this.

“Yeah,” she said. “But…” however she didn’t get to finish as Lucius walked to her.

“What are you doing, Heather?” he said dangerously, looking at Sirius. Sirius practically growled. “You don’t want to talk to him. He is a mud-blood lover.” Just then, as if sensing trouble, three more people came up from behind Sirius. They were all glaring at Lucius.

“Is there a problem, Lucy?” a tall boy with glasses asked.

“Not at all,” Lucius said calmly, oddly deciding to ignore the slight on his name; he seemed to be very aware of the fact that he was out-numbered. “Just the fact that Black was trying to talk to my cousin. He should know better. She has no time for blood traitors,” and with that, he grabbed Heather’s arm roughly, leading her away. Heather struggled wildly, while trying not to bring attention to them.

“Get off of me!” she whispered venomously. Finally he let her go. She turned to see Sirius Black and his friends leaving. “How dare you?! I am allowed to talk to whoever I want!”

“You are not! You are a Malfoy, and you will not disgrace the family name. I forbid you to talk to any of the Maruaders.”

“Who are the Marauders?” Heather asked hotly.

“James Potter, Remus Lupin, Peter Pettigrew and the boy you were talking to, Sirius Black,” Lucius explained. “Come, you will meet my friends.”

"I want nothing to do with your friends,” Heather said and began walking away. Lucius growled in fury, grabbing her arm once again. He looked around to make sure he wasn't drawing any attention, and then glared back at her.

“You will meet them...or I will make you,” he said, putting his face inches from hers. Heather’s face struggled not to show her inner-fear.

“What could you do to me?” she said, shaking slightly.

“Have you ever heard of the Cruciotus Curse? I’m sure that wouldn’t have escaped your orphanage tutoring.”

“I…you…you wouldn’t dare!” Heather said, trying not to cry. Would he really do that to her?

“I would dare. And trust me, once you are sorted into Slytherin, you will find nobody willing to go against me. I rule the Slytherins. I am the leader, and they will do anything I say. So will you,” he said.

Heather was furious. In fact, she could never remember being so furious in her life. But what could she do? She had no doubt that he was like a leader to all of the Slytherins. And she had no doubt of his determination.

Having spent a week in his company, she wouldn't have put it past him to try and torture her if she didn't do things his way. She looked at the train sadly, and her eyes caught Sirius Black looking at her. He was glaring, not at Lucius, but at her. His face conveyed openly the fact that he thought she was like her cousin. She hadn’t really been able to explain that she wasn’t like that, but he didn’t have to jump to conclusions. He was in the wrong, not she. Or was she in the wrong? She closed her eyes in distress. Whoever that was, Sirius Black, or whatever, she had felt something she had never felt before. Already Lucius had ruined her chance of having a friend.

Sirius stared out the window, glaring. That girl had betrayed him. He had thought they could be friends, and maybe even catch a snogging session or two. But now...she was a Malfoy. There was no doubt in his mind that she was just like all the rest of her family. It’s not like she tried to stop Lucius…at least not in his presence. She was just like his own family…obsessed with pure blood.

He watched as she boarded the train. He decided that the plan of action would be to forget about her. She was bad news. She was a Muggle hater. She was a Malfoy.

Preview for Chapter Three~*~Love At First Fight: “Just looking for a reason to yell at me! I didn’t trip you and you know it! You just wanted to make me look like I did so you can pout to your Slytherin cronies. Hoping they’ll come and attack me for you?” he yelled losing control.

“Oh, so now I have cronies?!” Heather said. “You really are so narrow-minded. Just because my last name is Malfoy you have to trip me all over the place. Maybe Lucius was right about you!”

“Oh, Lucius talks about me does he? Does he happen to mention how charming I am?” Sirius said in mock glee. Heather glared at him. “Alright, you’ve got what you want. You’ve made a big scene. Happy?” Sirius said cuttingly. Heather stopped and looked around, noticing that people had their heads poking out of their compartments and were watching intently. She turned angrily back to Sirius, but he slammed the door in her face.


Chapter 3: Love at First Fight
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Chapter Three~*~Love At First Fight



As Heather followed Lucius onto the train, she tried desperately to wipe the emotions from her face. A few people stared, having never seen her before. She tried to act like she fit in, like she felt at home, but it was very difficult. Sure, she had grown up in an orphanage, always unsure of what would happen to her next, but she had never had problems like this. Never before had she been subjected to people that she actually cared about what they thought of her. She had always been rather submissive, choosing to accpt most things, and choose which battles were absolutely necessary to fight. But never had she been absolutely helpless to control a situation.

Before she knew it, Lucius had guided her to a noisy compartment.

“In,” he demanded. Heather glared at him defiantly, but he shoved her roughly in the back. The compartment got quiet when she entered. Her heartbeat quickened as she looked around her. Three people were sitting in the seats before her.

One girl who had large, heavy-lidded eyes and long, black hair glared at her. Heather frowned, as the girl had a fmailiar air about her. Then, sitting next to her was a rather tall, greasy looking boy with long, shoulder length black hair and a large, beak-like nose. She tried not to moan in disgust as his greasy locks were matted to his head.

Then, sitting on the seat opposite them both was a very skinny, short boy. He had extremely delicate features, and a buzz-cut, making him look even more scrawny. His face was pencil-like, coming to a point at his nose. He reminded her very much of a starving bird. He looked menacingly at her. Lucius pushed her out of the way, moving to sit next to the bird.

“Hey Lucius,” the greasy kid said, grinning. “Who’s the girl?” Heather was extremely uncomfortable, realizing she was the only one standing, and there were no more seats. She decided to just lean against the wall. She saw Lucius opening his mouth to introduce her. She would have none of it. She didn’t want him introducing her as if she was his little slave or something.

“My name is Heather. Pleased to meet you all,” she snapped, cutting Lucius off. Everybody in the compartment stared at her, then at Lucius, seeing what he might do to her for her outrageous behavior.

Heather's insides curled. Lucius had been right, he was like a lord to them all, and she had just offended. She tried to smile sweetly, glancing cuttingly at her cousin.

“She hasn’t quite learned the rules yet," Lucius ground out, then let out a frustrated sigh. "That is Severus Snape,” he said, pointing at the greasy-haired boy. “That is Theodore Knott,” he motioned to the scrawny kid. “And that, is Bellatrix Black,” he finished. Then it hit her. That’s why she seemed familiar. She was related to Sirius! But that meant...

"Are you a pure-blood?" Heather asked quickly, putting two and two together. Bellatrix looked up from her bored expression to dawn one of surprise.

"Of course! All of the Blacks are pure-bloods, you imbecile!" she said, glaring mutinously, as though the idea of being half-blood was ridiculous. Haether bit her lip.

"And...you're sisters with Sirius Black?" she couldn't help but ask, ignoring the scandalized look of Lucius. He looked ready to strangle her.

"Don't mention that name to me! He's a Blood Traitor, and how dare you suggest he's my brother! He's my cousin only!" she hissed. Heather stood dumbstruck, only nodding.

That hypocrite! she couldn't help but thinking. That dirty, hypocrite! His family was just like the Malfoys! And yet he had the nerve to judge her?! Her anger at him grew, as did her dislike of his character. Who did he think he was, anyways?

"...as a Slytherin. The first rule you will learn is, I do all the talking,” Lucius said, interupting her thoughts. It took her a second to realize he'd been talking to her that whole time. Her eyebrows shot up as she began to compute what he'd just told her.

“Oh, so you’re just going to train me like I’m some animal? I don’t think so! I am not your little...” but Heather was cut off when the compartment door slid open. She looked around and saw a girl about her age, smiling cunningly. She was wearing a very tight mini-skirt, and looked as if she had altered her school blouse so that it fit her very snugly, showing off her curves. She had long, stick-straight blonde hair and enough make-up on to completely hide whatever facial features she might have naturally.

“Hey sweetie,” she said rather huskily to Lucius.

“Narcissa...” Lucius said, pleased. She sauntered over and sat on his lap. Lucius put his arms around her and then pressed her against the wall, kissing her harshly. Heather frowned, he had to be hurting her. She looked around at the others and saw that they were watching, looking rather bored. Snape watched them, and then cast a taunting glance at Heather. She grimaced.

“I think I’m going to be sick! I need to go to the bathroom,” she said, and left out the door, unnoticed by Lucius and the blonde girl, Narcissa.

As soon as she was outside in the corridor she closed her eyes, trying to calm herself. Her life was going to be hell this year. Opening her eyes, she saw Sirius Black leaning against the wall not too far away. He was staring at her, looking lost and confused. She thought of his cousin, sitting inside the compartment, and it filled her with rage. She looked away from him, folding her arms over her chest. Was there no way to escape these coniving people?

Sirius saw how desolate she looked. He wondered what could make her feel that way. Maybe it was because Voldemort wasn’t strong enough, or maybe because there were still Muggles in the world. At these thoughts he looked away. She was a Malfoy.

“Who’s that?” a voice said right beside him. Sirius jumped and turned to see Peter standing beside him. He was pointing rudely at Heather, though she wasn't paying any attention to him anymore.

“Heather Malfoy,” Sirius said shortly, pulling Peter's fat fingers out of their pointing position. He swallowed, his anger getting caught in his voice as he said the name, Malfoy.

“Malfoy? What should we do about that? Sounds like new prey. She’d be a fun one to prank, don’t you think?” Peter said eagerly, trying to appear cool. Sirius glared. Then he stopped as he saw Heather walking down the hallway. She passed them, averting her gaze. This made Sirius mad. Did she think him so below her she couldn’t even look at him?!

Heather quickly caught a glimpse of Sirius glaring at her, and her heart quickened. Did he really hate her that much? But then she tripped over something and fell to the ground. She looked up and saw that Sirius must have tripped her! She got up angrily, this was taking things too far!

“Was that necessary?!” she yelled at him. Sirius’ face looked blank for a second, as if he wasn’t quite sure what she was talking about. “Did you have to trip me?”

“I didn’t trip you!” Sirius shouted at her, inscenced by her accusation.

“Oh, so I just tripped over the air?” Heather asked hotly. Sirius glared, noticing the attention they were getting. He gave a bark of laughter as heads poked out of their compartments. He suddenly realized what she was trying to do.

“Just looking for a reason to yell at me! I didn’t trip you and you know it! You just wanted to make me look like I did so you can pout to your Slytherin cronies. Hoping they’ll come and attack me for you?” he yelled losing control.

“Oh, so now I have cronies?!” Heather said. “You really are so narrow-minded. Just because my last name is Malfoy you have to trip me all over the place. Maybe Lucius was right about you!”

“Oh, Lucius talks about me does he? Does he happen to mention how charming I am?” Sirius said in mock glee. Heather glared at him. “Alright, you’ve got what you want. You’ve made a big scene. Happy?” Sirius said cuttingly. Heather stopped and looked around, also noticing the gaping faces of students watching intently. She turned angrily back to Sirius, but it was only to have the door slammed in her face. She glared.

Sirius took a deep breath as he leaned against the shut door and saw James and Remus looking up at him from their seats. Peter was standing right beside him, with a rather satisfied look on his face. Nobody would suspect Peter’s tripping the girl, but he had. It was his first prank. Sirius sighed heavily and sat down next to James.

"Hey, mate, don't sweat it," James said. Apparently they had heard it through the glass. This distressed Sirius even more.

“Well, I’m sure to get a visit from the Slytherins once she tells them I’ve tripped her,” he said dismally.

Did you trip her?” Remus asked.

“No!” Sirius said annoyed. “She completely faked it.”

“Well, don’t worry. If she was just looking for a reason to sic the Slytherins on you, I’ve got your back,” James said. “But, in the meantime, I’m going to find Lily.” Sirius snorted. James and Lily had been going out for a couple of months now, and they were inseparable. Nobody noticed Peter shifting guiltily. He hadn't meant to get Sirius in trouble....

~~


At last the train came to a stop, and Heather was relieved to get away into the crowd. She hadn’t gone back to the compartment, but had found one with a rather jumpy third year girl, and asked if she could share the compartment. She had tried to strike up conversation, but the girl didn’t seem to want to talk at all.

Walking along, Heather unconsciously looked for Sirius. When she caught herself doing it, she stopped immediately and slapped herself mentally. Looking around her, she tried her best to blend in with the crowd, lest Lucius spotted her. Just then, she stopped, her whole body shivering. She wasn’t even that cold, but she suddenly couldn’t stop shivering. She started breathing deeply, her head was pounding. Her eyes began watering, and she felt people passing her.

“Are you alright?” she heard somebody ask rather concernedly. She couldn’t respond. She couldn’t breath right. Suddenly her knees buckled, and she dropped onto the ground.

“What’s wrong with you?!” the same voice said again, rather scared sounding.

Heather stopped shivering, and she opened her eyes. But she wasn’t outside the train, she wasn’t on the driveway of Hogwarts. She was somewhere she had never seen before. She was in a dark corridor, and staring straight at a young boy. He looked to be about eleven. He was crying, clutching his knees on the ground. She stared in shock, and then, quite suddenly, a wizard walked around a corner across from her.

He was holding a wand. He was too far away, so she couldn’t see who it was. The man raised his wand into the air, and just started to bring it down on the boy when Heather was jerked away from the corridor.


“NO!” she yelled, sitting up off the ground. Her head pounded terribly, and she had tears streaming down her face. What had just happened? What had she just seen?! She had to save that little boy!

Preview for Chapter Four~*~The Sorting: It seemed to take forever before they got to the ‘M’s. But, finally, after “Maleoth, Anne!” was made a Gryffindor, they got to her.

“Malfoy, Heather!” McGonagall called, and at once the crowd grew silent. She could see everybody staring.

“Malfoy? Like Lucius Malfoy?!” she heard people mutter. She narrowed her eyes, and spotted Lucius smiling grimly at her.


Chapter 4: The Sorting
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Chapter Four~*~The Sorting



“Are you alright? What happened?” a voice asked, and Heather recognized it from earlier. She looked around and saw a girl with blonde hair staring down at her. The girl had on bright blue lipstick, and eyes so brown they were almost black.

“Yeah...I...I dunno,” Heather said shakily, allowing the girl to help her up.

“Hmmm...What house are you in? I don’t think I’ve ever seen you here before,” the girl said.

“I’m new. I’ve been home-schooled all of my life,” Heather explained.

“Wow, that’s cool. I wish I had been home-schooled.”

“No you don’t,” Heather said firmly. But then seeing the girls odd look, she smiled, not really wanting to go into details right now. “I’m Heather Malfoy. You?” Heather nearly kicked herself. Why did she have to tell the girl her name?! Now she would hate her like Sirius did. “When I say I’m a Malfoy, don’t think I’m like Lucius at all. Because I’m not. I don’t believe in all of that pure-blood stuff,” she said quickly, hoping she could repair the damage. The other girl laughed.

“That’s okay. I’m Alex, and I’m a Gryffindor. This is my last year though. So are you Malfoy’s sister or something?”

“His cousin.”

“Cool. Well, we’d better get inside, the sorting is about to begin,” Alex said. Heather frowned.

“What will they do with me? I’m way older than all of the other kids that will be being sorted.”

“I don’t know. I guess you’ll just go up with them. I didn’t even think it was allowed for people to start this late at Hogwarts,” Alex said, shrugging.

“Well, my uncle has a way with people, so I’m sure he had enough money to buy me into school,” Heather said, and they soon caught up with the rest of the crowd.

“Firs’ years! Over ‘ere!” a voice called, booming and cheery. Heather jumped.

“Oh, That’s Hagrid,” Alex said boredly, seeing Heather's alarm. “He’s harmless.”

“Yeah, he really looks it,” Heather said sarcastically, noticing how large he was. If she didn’t know better, she would have thought him a giant. “Do I need to go with him?”

“I doubt it, I mean, you’re not exactly eleven. Come on, come with the rest of us. What are they going to do?" Alex said. Heather laughed, and she got into one of the odd, horseless carriages with Alex, trying to forget what had just happened to her.

But what was that? It was as if she had been there in the corridor with that little boy. Was it real? Or just a really odd dream? She pushed it out of her mind, deciding never to think of it again. It was probably just nerves.

Once the carriages returned, it seemed that the first years were just getting back from their journey with Hagrid. They all looked as nervous as Heather felt.

“Come on,” Alex said irritably. Heather hurried along, catching up with her new friend. The doors to the Great Hall swung open and the crowd bustled inside. Heather was nearly knocked off her feet for the second time that night. The large room was the most magnificent thing she had ever seen! She stared up at the ceiling, and saw that it was an exact double of the real sky outside. It was as if their was no ceiling. She grinned broadly.

“It’s beautiful!” she cried. Many people turned to look at her oddly, not realizing that this was her first time in the Great Hall. She mumbled an apology and spotted Sirius looking at her, with a sort of detached pleasure as he saw her smiling. As soon as he noticed her looking at him, he glared and turned back towards his other Marauder friends. Her good mood evaporated.

“Boy trouble?” Alex asked in a bored voice, looking over at Sirius. Heather sighed.

“I guess you could call it that. He thinks I’m like the other Malfoys. And he tripped me!” she said indignantly.

“You should be glad you’re rid of that one. He dates a new girl every week. He dates really idiotic girls, girls that want the same thing he wants. Sex,” Alex said informatively.

“Is that true?” Heather asked, frowning as she began to see Sirius in a new light.

“Yeah, we’ve got sort of a competition going on amongst the girls. You see, he has NEVER told a girl he loved her. Sure, he’ll give them all the compliments they want to hear, but he won’t say those three dumb words,” Alex said in exasperation. “So, all the girls have tried to coax him to say it. Malanie tried asking him out right to say it, saying she’d break up with him if he didn’t. Well, that was the end of that relationship,” she finished with a slight laugh. Heather knitted her brows thoughtfully. It seemed Sirius was honorable in his horsing around. What an idiot.

“You’d better get in line to be sorted,” Alex said dully. Heather looked and saw a large crowd of first years. She looked desperately back at Alex, but she had already wandered off to the Gryffindor house table. Heather uncomfortably walked over to stand amongst the younger children. They all stared at her oddly. She heard murmurs of confusion throughout the hall.

“What’s that girl doing up there?”

“Is she mental?”

“Does she want to be re-sorted or something?!” so many voices said. Some in admiration, some in confusion, some in mockery. Heather blushed to her roots. Then a strict looking, middle-aged woman came out, carrying a very strange, battered wizard's hat. She set it on a stool in the middle of the hall.

“I am Professor McGonagall,” the woman said crisply. “Welcome to Hogwarts. You will now be sorted,” and with that she walked off, sitting at a separate table that seemed to hold only adults, most likely the teachers table. Heather turned her attention back to the hat, waiting. Was this the test they were supposed to be taking? What on earth was going on?

She examined the battered hat, seeing holes and rips and the frayed edges. The first years all looked to her, as if expecting that since she was older, she knew what was going on. She only smiled uncertainly at them, shrugging slightly.

They turned away from her, talking amongst each other now. Then, as Heather stared at the old hat, a rip in the cloth opened up and started to sing! Heather wanted very badly to rub her eyes, and make sure she was seeing correctly. Was this how they did it in all schools or just Hogwarts?!

Once the song was finished, Heather wasn’t sure what to do. Everybody else started to clap, so she did as well. Professor McGonagall came back down from her chair, her eyes drifting for a second to Heather and resting there for quite some time. It was as if she was trying to see if she was the Malfoy her name claimed her to be. Heather smiled cheerily at her and Professor McGonagall nodded. Though her face still remained thin and emotionless, it was as if she was relieved.

“I will call out your names and you will go and sit on the bench. You will put the Sorting Hat onto your head, and you will learn your house. First is Aarack, Linda!” A rather pudgy girl ran up to the bench and eagerly stuffed the poor hat onto her head.

“Hufflepuff!” the hat cried. The girl ran to sit at her applauding table.

“Ablanche, Carl!” a wiry boy scurried nervously up and placed the hat hesitantly on his head. “Ravenclaw!” the hat yelled.

It seemed to take forever before they got to the ‘M’s. But, finally, after “Maleoth, Anne!” was made a Gryffindor, they got to her.

“Malfoy, Heather!” McGonagall called, and at once the crowd grew louder with mumblings of confusion. She could see everybody staring.

“Malfoy? Like Lucius Malfoy?!” she heard people mutter. She narrowed her eyes, and spotted Lucius smiling grimly at her.

“Anything but Slytherin. Not Slytherin. Please, don’t be Slytherin,” she chanted under her breath, walking up towards the stool. She sat on it awkwardly, afraid she might break it. She clutched the hat tightly, and then set it delicately on her head. The rim was sagging slightly and blocked her vision.

“Well now, isn’t this interesting. Another Malfoy?” a tiny voice whispered in her ear. She leapt a foot in the air, nearly falling off the stool. She heard a few people laughing, seeing her fright. She blushed in embarrassment. Why hadn't the other children been laughed at? “A Malfoy should be placed in Slytherin, should they not?” the voice said.

“NO!” she whispered loudly. “Listen, I’m not like the other Malfoys! I...” but she was cut off by the Sorting Hat.

“Gryffindor!” it yelled. Heathers first instinct was to argue that she shouldn’t be placed in Slytherin! That it was unfair that she should be judged on her name alone. Slowly, however, she realized that the hat had put her, not in Slytherin, but in Gryffindor. Heather sat there dumb-struck for several seconds. She lifted the hat off of her head.

“WHAT?!” a voice rang loudly across the hall. Heather turned to see Lucius standing on his feet at the Slytherin table, his face contorted in fury. Heather shivered slightly. She had never seen him this angry before. Would he torture her with the Cruciotus Curse? Her heart pounded in her throat as she thought this. But at the same time, she couldn’t help but think that at least she would be in the same house as Sirius.

Preview for Chapter Five~*~The Treacherous Waters of Denial: “You want to know what I think?” Remus asked.

“No,” Sirius grumbled. Remus smiled, but went on anyways.

“I think you really like her. I think you feel differently about her than any other girl and you don’t like it. You’re whipped mate. Admit it and things will be loads easier,” he said. Sirius didn’t say anything.


Chapter 5: The Treacherous Waters of Denial
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Chapter Five~*~The Treacherous Waters of Denial



Very slowly, as if walking on ice that was about to crack and suck her under, she made her way to the Gryffindor house table. She saw Sirius sitting between James and Remus, frowning at her. She looked away, her heart clenching in grief.

Why did she care so much what he thought of her? She shouldn’t. He was a hypocrite. He came from the same situation as her, and yet he was too prejudice to realize it. His own family, the Blacks, had been supporting Voldemort as long, if not longer, than the Malfoys. He wasn’t like his family, so why was it so hard for him to believe she wasn’t like the Malfoys?

She spotted Alex, sitting next to a rather dashing young man. She was flirting openly. When she spotted Heather, she waved and pointed to the empty seat beside her. Heather smiled, glad to have somebody familiar to sit by.

“Hey, Heather. Congrats on being Gryffindor,” Alex said, smiling slyly. “Here, these are my friends. This is Alice Theil, Sara Davidson, and Lily Evans,” she said pointing out three different girls sitting around them. Heather shook each of their hands in turn. Alice Theil was a very pale, round faced girl. She seemed incredibly good natured and freckles spotted her face. Her hair was sand-colored, and was very short cut, flaying out slightly at the edges.

Sara was an extremely pretty girl with dark chocolate skin. She had her hair hanging in hundreds of tiny braids that fell down past her waist. She had rich brown eyes, and was very muscular. Heather geussed she probably played Quidditch.

Lily Evans was by far the prettiest of the group. She had bright green eyes, sparkling with excitement. She sat up very straight, and was obviously a very prim, proper type of person. She had bright red hair which hung to her shoulders in light waves.

“I’m Heather,” Heather supplied. She decided not to disclose the fact that she was a Malfoy, but Alex did it anyways.

“She’s Malfoy’s cousin,” Alex said. Lily’s smile faltered slightly.

“I’m not at all like you would think. Please believe me when I say I don’t hate Muggles, and all that stuff. I seriously hate my cousin,” Heather amended, annoyed that she had to tell people this. Lily’s smile turned into an apologetic one.

“I believe you,” she said softly, apparently feeling horrible for jumping to conclusions about her. Heather smiled.

“Thanks,” she said earnestly. Just then the Great Hall grew silent. Heather looked around, wondering what was happening. She saw that everybody’s eyes seemed to be glued to one spot. Heather turned and saw the spot. It was Albus Dumbledore. She had read about him in so many books, and had great respect for the man. She smiled as his eyes twinkled.

“Welcome, first years! And, in this case, seventh year!” he said lightly. Everybody’s eyes shot to Heather and she nearly dropped to the ground. She was not used to so much attention! “I hope that our new Prefects and Heads of Houses will help them through their first year,” Dumbledore continued.

Lily swelled with pride, and Heather saw a large ‘Head Girl’ badge pinned to her robes. Heather smiled and gave her the thumbs up. Lily smiled broadly at her, but then turned her complete attention faithfully on Dumbledore, apparently very determined to live up to Head Girl standards. Heather nearly laughed. She had a feeling she and Lily would get on very well.

“Now, I’m afraid that all of the House-Elves have decided not to cook dinner tonight so I hope you won’t mind,” Dumbledore said. Heather heard gasps of terror. No feast?! She looked at her friends and saw that they too looked crest-fallen. Then she saw the corners of Dumbledore’s mouth twitch. “See how much we rely on them? Don’t ever take something for granted. Let the feast begin!” he said. Heather laughed. He had been joking!

“He is always trying to make some stupid joke before we eat,” Alex grumbled, piling food onto her plate.

“I think they’re wonderful! They encourage light-heartedness and it relaxes the first years,” Lily said reprovingly. The two of them started debating Dumbledore’s jokes while Heather started looking around at the food on the table.

Never before had she seen so much food. Piles of mashed potatoes, bowls of gravy, stacks of corn on the cob, pot-pies, and many odd dishes she didn’t even recognize were at her disposal. And then, if she had enough room for dessert, pies of all flavors littered the table, along with puddings, candied yams, cream puffs, and so much more it made her head spin. She grabbed everything that was in reach, filling her plate to the brim.

“Hungry?” Sara said jokingly. Heather grinned.

“Starved,” she said, and dug into her plate greedily. As she ate, she spotted Lucius talking with Bellatrix. They kept throwing scathing glances at her. Heather honestly didn’t know what to do about them. She just had to make sure Lucius or his friends never caught her alone.

~~

After Heather had eaten all she could, she felt extremely tired. She wondered where they would be sleeping. Dumbledore stood up as the volume in the Great Hall rose. He cleared his throat.

“I hope you all are well fed,” he said jovially. There was a loud murmur of pleasure. Dumbledore smiled. “Good. There are a few mandatory notices I wish to share with you. Our Caretaker, as always, wished me to inform you that at no time of day or night are Dung Bombs to be allowed in the castle. Also, to our new students, I must inform you that the Forbidden Forest is...well, Forbidden! I think it also necessary to remind some of our older students of that fact as well,” he said, casting a wink at the Marauders. They all grinned rakishly. Heather refused to look at them. “Now, I bid you goodnight, as you all have a big day tomorrow!”

“Come on, Heather, we’ll show you the way,” Alice said urging Heather to follow them. Heather did so, scurrying to catch up. Once they were all in the Common Room, Lily went to sit on the couch.

“Aren’t you coming?” Alex asked her, halfway up the steps to the girls dormitory. Lily shook her head.

“I’m going to wait for James,” she said grinning wickedly. All the girls snickered.

“James?” Heather asked, confused.

“Lily’s going out with James Potter,” Sara informed her. Heather’s heart fell. Lily was dating a Marauder? Of course, maybe James wasn’t like Sirius. She doubted Lily would date him if he was.

“Gotcha,” Heather said, winking. “Talk to you tomorrow then?”

“Definitely. Goodnight,” Lily called up after them. Heather got up the steps and saw four four-poster beds. One, hers she guessed, looked as if it had been shoved into the corner at the last minute. She sighed, and laid down on the bed.

“Long day?” Sara asked sympathetically.

“You have no idea,” Heather muttered. “See you tomorrow,” and without another word, she drifted into an uneasy sleep.



Sirius walked along the hallway, his hands in his pockets, ignoring the giggles and stares he was receiving from girls as he passed.

“What’s wrong Padfoot?” James asked. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen you ignore your fan-club like that.”

“Shut up, they’re not my fan-club,” Sirius grumbled.

“What’s wrong, mate?” Remus asked him as well. Sirius shrugged his shoulders.

“I was just thinking about that girl on the train today. You know, the Malfoy girl,” Sirius admitted.

“She seemed like a real bitch to me,” Peter said. Sirius glared, but then stopped, realizing that Peter was probably right.

“I dunno, maybe you’re just making assumptions. I mean, what has she done to you?” James asked.

“Loads of stuff!” Sirius defended.

“Like what?” Remus questioned.

“She tripped, and then blamed me for it! She will most likely send her Slytherin friends after me,” Sirius growled.

“What Slytherin friends? She’s in Gryffindor, mate. That’s got to count for something!” James said. Sirius didn’t know what to say.

“You want to know what I think?” Remus asked.

“No,” Sirius grumbled. Remus smiled, but went on anyways.

“I think you really like her. I think you feel differently about her than any other girl and you don’t like it. You’re whipped mate. Admit it and things will be loads easier,” he said. Sirius didn’t say anything. Mostly because Remus was right.

“You know what, I really need some time alone. I’m going for a walk. See you later,” and without another word, Sirius went off. James grinned at Remus.

“Remind you of Lily a bit? He’s got ‘Denial’ written all over his face,” he said, slapping Remus on the back. They both laughed, but Peter didn’t. He didn’t like this Malfoy girl at all. She was a fake, a scam. She wasn’t a true Malfoy, and it sickened him. She didn’t deserve her last name.

Sirius walked along, trying to think clearly. Why couldn’t he get that girl out of his head?! It was going to drive him mad. He was so preoccupied that he didn’t see his cousin, Bellatrix, leaning against the wall.

“Hello, Sirius,” she said. Sirius looked around. Had Heather really betrayed him? He looked around, looking for more Slytherins, if Heather had tried to send people to attack him, she wouldn’t have sent just Bella. He frowned.

“What do you want, Bella?” Sirius asked coldly, his eyes narrowing. She just smiled.

“You know what I want,” she said. Sirius raised a brow.

“Do I?”



Chapter 6: Heather's Gift
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Chapter Six~*~Heather's Gift



Heather was sitting alone in the Great Hall. She looked around her and saw empty seats, all that filled them was cold, stale air. She closed her eyes, and pulled her knees up against her chest. She rested her chin on her knees. Taking a deep breath, she looked up at the ceiling. It was bright and sunny out. Birds flew among the clouds, twittering and singing out their beautiful song to her. She knew their song was just for her. Who else could it be for? She was filled with a great happiness.

She smiled brightly, and saw a piano in the middle of the large room. Odd, she hadn’t noticed it there before. She stood up and walked over to it. The sun seemed to brighten as she laid her hand softly on the wooden frame. When she took her hand off, the room darkened. She smiled, and laid her hand flat against the wood. The room brightened once again. She sat on the bench and she was nearly blinded. She almost feared what the light would do if she actually started playing. She sighed deeply and laid her fingers on the keys. The light was so bright, Heather closed her eyes. She was still determined to play, however. She set her foot on the damper pedal, and the light seemed to get so bright she could hear it. She could taste it. She could smell it. She laughed loudly at the blissful feeling. Conjuring up the memory of her favorite song, she struck a note.

As soon as she had hit the note, however, it was as if somebody had turned off the light switch. The room became horribly cold, black, and wet. She looked up at the ceiling and saw that the sun was hiding behind clouds.

"No..." Heather muttered, frowning in consternation. She jumped away from the piano, hoping it might coax the sun out again. Instead, the clouds bunched together, weaving themselves into a tight blanket of misery. It began to rain, and thunder clapped against her ears. Things went completely dark. Heather’s breath quickened. She was terrified. She couldn’t see anything. It wasn’t black, it had no color at all! To call this darkness black would have been too light a color. Then a streak of lightening filled the room for a split second, and she was able to see long enough to realize that somebody was standing right in front of her, staring at her. His nose was almost touching hers, and if he had moved at all he would have bumped into her. She screamed a loud, terrified scream, falling over. Lucius!

Picking herself up off the ground she ran, she didn’t know where she was running, she couldn’t see. Another flash of lightening. Again, Lucius was right next to her, his hands hovering inches from her throat.

"NOO!" Heather cried in terror. But then, she saw something. It was a light. She ran to it, and saw that the light was coming from a person. She breathed her relief. She was safe now. It was Sirius. The light seemed to enfold him. He was not looking at her, however, but at somebody in front of him. Heather turned to see Bellatrix, his cousin. Unknown to Sirius, Bella had a knife hidden behind her back. "Sirius!" Heather cried. She didn’t like his attitude all that much, but she certainly didn’t want him dead! "Sirius! She’s got a knife!" she tried to yell, but suddenly her voice had disappeared. Either that or she had gone temporarily deaf. "Stop!" she mouthed. Bella turned to her then, and pulled the knife out from behind her back. Sirius just smiled at it, as if welcoming it. Heather tried vainly to get to him. What was he doing?!

Then, without warning, Bella slammed the knife into Sirius’ chest. Sirius looked down at the knife and burst out laughing. Slowly, he began to realize that he was dying. No...Heather realized there was only one way to save him...she had to play the piano.

She ran back into the Great Hall, where darkness consumed her once again. She ran forward. Another blast of lightening, and she saw that Lucius was running backwards right in front of her, keeping pace so that she didn’t touch him, but his face only mere inches from hers. He was smiling maniacally. Heather reached out to grab him, but just as she did, darkness regained control, and she grabbed at nothing. Suddenly she slammed into something. She felt it’s hard wood. It was a piano!

She quickly found the bench and sat down. Closing her eyes, she balled up her fists and slammed them into the keys.


"SIRIUS!" Heather yelled, rolling off her bed and onto the ground. She leapt to her feet, her head pounding. She felt awful. Breathing deeply, she felt very much like she had felt when she had passed out right after getting off the Hogwarts Express. Except that this was much worse. She clenched her eyes shut as a wave of nausea claimed her. She clutched at her stomach and ran into the bathroom. The other girls woke to her vomiting.

"Heather? Are you alright?!" Lily asked, running into the bathroom. Seeing Heather clenched up on the floor, she filled a glass of water. Heather drank it and shook her self metally. she couldn't just sit here! She stood up then, as the other girls piled in.

"I have to go!" Heather said urgently. She had to save Sirius.

"No way! You’re totally sick!" Sara said, but Heather ignored her and, snatching up her wand, ran down the steps in nothing but her shorts and baggy tee-shirt. She slammed through the portrait hole, ignoring the Fat Lady’s complaints. Where should she look? Then she remembered the corridor in her dream. Right next to the Great Hall. Her heart smashed against her chest, as if determined to bang itself to pieces. She gasped horribly, clutching her still sore stomach. Another wave of nausea consumed her and she wretched in a corner. Wiping her mouth, she kept running. She had to get to Sirius before it was too late.

As she ran along, her long hair came out of its scrunchie, and before long it flagged out behind her, as if a banner exclaiming her distress. Finally she rounded a corner and saw Sirius leaning casually against a wall, staring at Bella, who was hiding the knife. Sirius turned to see Heather staring in terror.

"Are you all right?!" he asked, seeing her face, and his own filling with concern. Bella, however, decided to use this new distraction to her advantage. Heather saw her raise the knife in the air.

"Protego!" she yelled. Bella’s knife slammed into the shield that now protected Sirius and bounced back, clattering to the ground. Sirius turned to stare in amazement at the knife. Bella clutch her injured hand, but then took off. Heather screwed up her face. "Stupify!" she yelled, but it merely bounced off the wall. She had missed, and Bella had gotten away.

"You...you just saved my life! How did..." but Sirius stopped as he saw Heather lean against the wall, sliding slowly down to the floor. "What happened to you?!" he asked urgently, rushing to her side. His feelings towards her last name were forgotten, now he cared only for the person that bore it.

"I..." Heather tried to concentrate. Her head was pounding. "I think...I can see the future...or I guess this is the present...I dunno..." she said hoarsely. Sirius just stared.

"What?!" he asked.

"I had a dream just now, that Bella was trying to kill you," Heather said. "And she was!" Sirius stared. How else could she have known? Unless this was some sort of trick she was playing. She was a Malfoy after all. As soon as he thought that he felt terrible. This girl had just saved his life! Is that the way he repaid her?!

"If...if you really can tell the future..." Sirius started.

"I can," Heather assured, clutching her stomach as another bout of pain washed over her. Sirius grabbed her hand.

"I’m taking you to the hospital wing," Sirius said.

"No, they will ask me what’s wrong. I can’t tell anybody about this. I can’t believe I just told you!" she said in horror. Sirius looked away.

"Look, I know I’ve been an ass. But your secret is safe with me," he promised, and Heather couldn’t help but believe him. Her head reeled. If Lucius realized that she could tell the future, he would without a doubt use that to his advantage...

"What will I tell them?" she asked. Sirius thought for a second, and then grinned.

"You can just tell them you ate too much at the feast. There is no way they can deny that. I’d never seen somebody eat like that! Even James!" Heather laughed, but then stopped as her head throbbed. Sirius frowned. "Come on," he said and he picked her up in his arms as if she weighed nothing. Heather couldn’t help but smile, she felt safer already.


A/N: Alrighty, well, what did you think? Personally, this is one of my favorite chapters. Things FINALLY start moving with these two. Whether it will last...who but Trelawny can tell? Well...me, but that's not the point. The point is to review. If you don't I will send Bella knocking on your door!!! BWAHA. Lol, alright, so I won't do that, but just review? Not even a third of the people that read actually review after they read the story. Does it really suck so bad you can't put it into words? Or is it so phenomanol that you're in shock and can't type?

Chapter 7: Reveal Your Secrets
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Chapter Seven~*~Reveal Your Secrets


Heather spent the next few day’s in the hospital wing, recovering from her vision. Her friends came and visited her as often as they could. The odd thing was that there was one person that visited more often than her friends was her worst enemy. Sirius black. He brought her the homework, and they did it together. For a relationship that had started out so horribly, it had definitely blossomed into a beautiful thing. She learned more about Sirius everyday, and the more she learned, the more she liked. The same thing went for Sirius. He had apologized over and over for his mistreatment of her, and it had taken her awhile, but she had finally forgiven him. On the day she would go home, Sirius came to visit her during lunch.

“Brought you some pumpkin juice,” Sirius said, grinning. Heather laughed lightly and took it. Madame Pomfrey hadn’t allowed Heather any other drink than water. Sirius, however, managed to bring her stuff every time he visited. While she sipped her drink, she eyed Sirius thoughtfully. He stared in confusion.

“What?” he asked self-consciously. He checked himself. Sirius Black? Self-conscious?! Never! Heather just continued to stare. He frowned in consternation. “What is it? Am I growing a third head or something?!” she smiled at that.

“I’ve been wanting to ask you something, but didn’t really think it my business. But I guess since you know my secret, I won’t feel guilty. All the girls say that you’ve dated all kinds of girls, but you’ve never told any of them that you loved them. Is that true?” she asked. Sirius nodded.

“Yeah,” he said. She nodded. “What? Do you want me to lie to them?!” he asked incredulously. Heather laughed.

“That’s not what I meant. I actually admire that. Most guys would lie and say it just to get the girl in bed with him,” Heather said. Sirius face went somber.

“Did a guy do that to you?” he asked, and then something just short of fury bubbled inside of him. Heather shook her head, and she watched him sigh in relief. “You know, Heather. I like you a lot,” Sirius said boldly. Heather frowned.

“No, Sirius, I don’t think you do,” she said sadly.

“I don’t?” he said in confusion, wondering why she would think that.

“You don’t really want to be with me. All you want from me is sex, and I’m not that kind of girl,” Heather said. Sirius’ eyes filled with a world of hurt.

“Is that what you think? Do you think I like you because you’re the most gorgeous thing I’ve ever seen? Well, if you think that I think you’re beautiful, you’re right. But if you think that’s the only reason I like you, you’re mental.” Heather still didn’t look convinced.

“How do you know it’s not just powerful lust?” she asked. Sirius looked into her eyes.

“I have been in the broom closet with loads of girls. I won’t lie to you and say I’m a perfect innocent. I’ve had my fair share of sex. I’m an idiot, what can I say? I’m addicted to that happy feeling, like I’m accepted for once in my life. But all I have to do is see you smile and I get that feeling multiplied by hundreds,” he finished. His heart did a flipflop as he realized that he had just spilled his emotions. Never before had he revealed his true feelings for a girl. But then again, never before had he had feelings like these to reveal. He stared at her, his heart at her disposal.

“Sirius...I don’t want to hurt you but...I’m not ready...” she said, struggling to get the words out. She liked him, she really did. She maybe even loved him for all she knew, but she hated revealing it. It hadn’t taken her long to learn never to trust somebody with your emotions in the orphanage. She just wasn’t ready to trust him like that yet. Only yesterday had he refused her company for her surname. She needed time. She was so afraid that if she didn’t act now, however, he would get bored of waiting for her and leave her forever. She stared at him, waiting for him to tell her that, never mind, if she wasn’t ready, then he didn’t want to deal with her.

“I’ll wait until the day before my death for you,” Sirius said, and, feeling very unsure of himself, he left. As soon as he was outside the room he closed his eyes. His heart was pounding. Never before had he loved a girl. Now he did, it was the most precious thing, fragile, and rather painful at this point. He smiled rather wryly. Sirius Black was ‘Whipped’ as Remus put it. He decided to go and practice Quidditch for the next game against Slytherin in a few weeks. He was the best Beater they had, and couldn’t let his skills waver.

Heather leaned her head back against the headboard as Madame Pomfrey bustled in.

“Is he gone, then?” she said sweetly to Heather, who nodded. Pomfrey smiled. “Such sweet boy. I think he fancies you, dear,” the young woman said with a slight wink. Heather laughed, and smiled broadly. But just then, the door to the outside opened. Heather turned green at the face of Lucius Malfoy. Madame Pomfrey smiled. “My, you are popular! I’ll leave you two alone,” she said.

“Madame Pomfrey!” Heather said urgently. She was going to ask her to get rid of Lucius. Lucius shook his head, running his finger across his throat indicating that she would pay dearly if she did anything. Heather shook slightly.

“Yes dear?”

“Never mind,” Heather said sadly, and Pomfrey left.

“Very good,” Lucius said, coming and sitting on the edge of her bed.

“What do you want?” Heather seethed, moving away from him.

“Why, I came to see if my sweet cousin was feeling alright!” he said innocently. Heather glared. “What happened to you?”

“I ate too much at the feast,” Heather said.

“What really happened to you?” he asked getting slightly angry. Heather glared.

“I just told you!” she said irritable.

“Don’t tempt me,” Lucius said sharply. “Bella said you stopped her from...her work.”

“And I’ll do it a hundred times over. Leave him alone,” Heather said threateningly. Lucius laughed, leaning closer to her.

“What’s this? Are you threatening me?” he asked, his hand coming to rest on her shoulder. Heather didn’t say anything. “I didn’t think so. Now, I want an answer. How did you know that Bella was going to do that?” he whispered. Heather remained silent, just glaring. Lucius glanced at Pomfrey’s office, making sure they couldn’t be seen, then he grabbed a handful of her wavy hair, pulling her face inches from his. “What happened to you?”

“I told you. I ate too...” but Heater was interrupted when Lucius back-handed her across the face. She stared in shock, her eyes watering. Her face stung badly, and she was sure he had loosened some of her teeth. She looked up at him, terror obvious in her face.

“I will find out what you’re hiding from me. If I don’t the Dark Lord will. You will join us in the end. You’re a Malfoy. You’re destined to be a Death Eater.”

“Go to Hell,” she whispered. Lucius gritted his teeth. Still holding onto her hair, he threw her away from him, and walked out the door. Heather let the tears come as she laid a hand gingerly on her smarting cheek.

A/N: yes, this chapter was a little short, and I'm really sorry about that. I'll try and get the next chapter out ot you as soon as possible though. Thanks for reading! I hope you'll take the time to review!

Chapter 8: Quidditch
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Chapter Eight~*~Quidditch


Many weeks passed, and Heather didn’t see hide nor hair of Lucius, to which she was very grateful. She was actually feeling that, for once in her life, things were going good. She hadn’t had a vision since the one with Sirius, and he was the only one that knew her secret. She had no doubt that he would keep it safe for her. They had spent time with each other constantly after the Bella incident. James and Remus snickered that Sirius had finally grown up, and Lily, Alex and Sara joked about how Heather was completely smitten. The funny thing was, neither of them had denied it.

Heather had refrained from telling Sirius about Lucius coming to her in the hospital wing. She didn’t know what his reaction would be, but with what she knew of him so far, she was sure he would kill Lucius. She didn’t want to risk his getting hurt.

“Aren’t you coming to the match, Heather?” Lily asked excitedly. Heather nodded vigorously.

“I honestly can’t wait!” she said, and it was the truth. She had never seen a Quidditch match before, and was quite looking forward to it. It would be even better because two of her best friends would be playing in it. Sara was a Chaser, and Sirius was a Beater.

“Frank is going to be playing as well!” Alice bubbled. Heather and Lily shared knowing looks. It was obvious that Alice had a major crush on Frank Longbottom.

“What are you two smirking at?” Alice said defensively, although she knew perfectly well.

“When are you going to ask him out, anyways?” Lily asked exasperated. Alice blushed.

“I’m sure he doesn’t like me back,” she said sadly. Lily scoffed.

“Are you blind?! He’s always staring at you during Herbology,” she said. Heather nodded her agreement.

“Yeah, Lily’s right you know. I’ve only been here a month and I can already tell he likes you,” she admitted. Alice rolled her eyes, but a smile danced happily across her freckled face. Heather smiled also as they stepped out onto the grounds. It was a truly beautiful day. The sun was out, but it wasn’t too bright. It wasn’t too cold, yet it wasn’t too hot. Crispy leaves carpeted their path to the Quidditch field, crunching merrily beneath they’re feet.

“This is going to be a good match,” Alice commented. “Did you say this is your first Heather?”

“Yeah,” Heather said sheepishly.

“You’ll love it, trust me,” Lily enthused. “Most of the guys on the team are wonderful to look at, so it doesn’t really matter if the game is boring or not,” Lily said. All the girls nodded, sighing slightly. Yet their minds were on different guys. Alice’s on Frank, Lily’s on James, and Heather’s on Sirius.

After they had all gotten seats together, they started chatting merrily.

“Hey,” a voice said from right next to them. “Mind if I we sit next to you?” All the girls turned to see Remus Lupin and Peter Pettigrew. Heather smiled, and they all nodded. Remus sat on Heather’s right. Heather hadn’t really talked to Remus much, but from what she gathered, he was a really great guy. He didn’t talk very much, and he always seemed to have his mind on something other than their conversations. Peter Pettigrew, for some reason, didn’t seem to like Heather at all. She didn’t mind though, she didn’t like him either. He tried desperately to be like the other three Marauders, but failed miserably. She honestly didn’t see how he had become a Marauder.

"It’s going to be a good game today. James and Sirius are really excited, and they’ve got some new moves all worked out and everything,” Remus said.

“Yeah, I can’t wait. I mean, I know all the rules, but I’ve never actually seen Quidditch before,” Heather said. Remus seemed too shocked to speak.

“Never?!” he choked. “How did you survive?!”

“Well, I grew up in an orphanage, and they don’t play Quidditch there, so...yeah,” Heather said uncomfortably. Remus’ face became somber at once.

“I’m sorry. I know how you feel,” he said sadly.

“You’re an orphan?” Heather asked, her eyes widening in pity. Remus shrugged.

“Well, not really. When I was nine my parents left me on the streets. I’ve lived with my Grandmother. I haven’t seen them since,” he said, blushing slightly.

“Yeah, my mom abandoned me because of my dad’s death. What happened with you?” Heather said rather touchily. She didn’t know if she had the right to ask these questions, but she was extremely curious. Remus looked away uncomfortably.

“I got into a fight with a dog. They thought I was dead, so they left me...” Remus muttered. Heather frowned slightly, knowing that he was keeping something from her. She nodded though, it really wasn’t any of her business.

“I’m sorry,” she muttered. “I shouldn’t have asked you. It wasn’t my place,” she said. Remus smiled then.

“No big deal. I shouldn’t care so much anyways,” Remus said. Heather shook her head.

“You should always care,” she said, laying a hand on his shoulder. He smiled.

“Thanks,” he muttered. And Heather grinned too. She had the feeling she had just made a very good friend.

“Alright. It looks like our players are ready!” a loud, booming voice cut across the stadium. There were loud cheers. Heather turned to see a tall Ravenclaw girl commentating. Heather recognized her from Charms. Her name was Aida Bones. A very tight faced McGonagall stood behind her. “And here comes the referee, Madame Lancey!” Heather saw a very young, cheery young woman coming out to blasting applause. She was carrying a large trunk. Heather frowned.

“What’s the trunk for?” she whispered to Remus.

“It’s the Snitch, Bludger and Quaffle,” he muttered back.

“Oh, right,” she said.

“For Gryffindor, we have Captain and Seeker, Sara Thomas!” Aida announced, her words being drowned out by tumultuous applause. “Followed by the two Chasers, Cory Donnovan and James Potter!” Lily clapped loudly, smiling widely. “Next come the two Beaters, Shannon Campson and Sirius Black!” Heather clapped until her hands were numb, grinning ear to ear, with her heart thumping madly. Sirius flew out then, swinging his bat and waving at the crowd. “And, last but certainly not least, the Keeper, Frank Longbottom!” Alice actually stood up, screaming and shouting.

Heather’s ears pounded with all the shouts of joy, and hisses of anger from the Slytherins.

“For Slytherin, we have Captain and Keeper, Lucius Malfoy!” Aida said with much less enthusiasm. Heather was surrounded by the boo’s and hisses of her fellow Gryffindors. She said nothing, but remained quiet, glaring silently. He wasn’t worth her scratching her throat up to boo and hiss at him. She hated him so much. “Followed by the two...” but Heather stopped listening. She didn’t want to be here anymore. The sight of Lucius had ruined the game. She hadn’t known he would be playing as well. She chastened herself. She wouldn’t leave. She wanted to watch Sirius.

A large whistle filled the air, and Madame Lancey released the Snitch. Another loud whistle and she released the Bludgers. Then she flew up between the two opposing teams. With one last whistle she threw the bright red Quaffle into the air.

“And, Potter has got the Quaffle. He’s heading for the goal post, but it looks like Malfoy is ready for him. Oh! A well aimed Bludger from the Slytherin Beater! Nice swerve, James! Aw, but it looks like he’s dropped the Quaffle. Slytherin Chaser, Levy, catches the Quaffle, and is speeding down the other direction. Oh, nice move, Tarkin, but afraid it was a little too late. Levy is going...going. Longbottom, come on, Longbottom. He looks determined, but will he save the goal?! OH!” The crowd roared with glee as a Bludger forced Levy to miss the shot. “Nice Bludger sent by Black! Way to go Sirius!” Heather cheered.

“Wow, that is definitely going to hurt in the morning. Tough luck, Levy,” Aida said, but with no real conviction. “And now Donnavan has got the Quaffle, nice pass to Potter, who just misses a second bludger. Levy is right on his tail! COME ON JAMES!” The crowd roared its approval as James scored the first goal for Gryffindor. “TEN-ZERO TO GRYFFINDOR!! TEN-ZERO!”

Heather looked anxiously at Lucius, who was seething. He made a hand motion to one of his Beaters, and the Beater nodded. The next thing they knew, James was knocked hard in the face with a Bludger. Lily screamed in outrage.

“FOWL!” She yelled, but before the word had escaped her lips, the Beater that had hit James was slammed from the side with another Bludger. Heather saw Sirius smiling devilishly.

“GO SIRIUS!” She yelled, but her voice was lost in with other screams of approval as the Gryffindors realized that Sirius had been the one to send the Bludger at the Slytherin Beater. Sirius swung his bat tauntingly at Lucius, who nearly left his posts in anger. James threw Sirius the thumbs up.

“Wait! Whats this?!” Aida interrupted. “Looks like Thomas has seen the Snitch!”

“COME ON, SARA!” all three girls roared. Sara swooped down, her dark hair flying behind her. The Slytherin Seeker, Marla Henderson, slammed into her from the side, the handle of her broom stuffing itself into her ribs. Sara clutched her side in pain.

“FOWL!!!!!!!” Remus yelled, standing up. So had everybody else. Madame Lancey blew her whistle, flying over to the Slytherin Seeker, who looked rather bored by the lecture she was now recieving. Sara was obviously in a lot of pain, but when Lancey asked if she’d like to forfeit the game, she shook her head as if Lancey was mad.

“This should definitely count against that Seeker! Bloody Slytherins!” the commentator roared, turning around to see if McGonagall would chasten her. But Professor McGonagall was standing on her tip-toes, shaking with rage.

“Never! In all my time at Hogwarts!” she was ranting on.

“And...yes. It looks like a well deserved penalty shot for Gryffindor!” Aida said indignantly. The Slytherins all groaned as one. “You know you deserved it,” Aida said cuttingly. James took the shot, but, instead of trying to throw it in himself, like Lucius obviously thought he would, he faked throwing straight forward, but at the last second passed it to Donnovan, who scored. Cheers filled the stadium. “TWENTY-ZERO TO GRYFFINDOR! TAKE THAT YOU CHEATING SCUM!”

The game trudged on, getting more and more violent with each goal. Heather watched Sirius mostly, who seemed to be aiming most of his Bludgers at Marla Henderson. Heather grinned. But then stopped as she saw Sara go into the second dive that game.

“SARA HAS SEEN THE SNITCH...AGAIN!” the commentator roared. “WATCH YOUR STEP, SLYTHERIN!” Heather stood up as Sara and Marla flew neck and neck. Marla’s eyes darted around, following the Snitch. But then, a Bludger flew in front of the two Seekers, and they were forced off course.

Sara saw the Snitch again, but saw that Marla was still looking for it. She veered to the left, the opposite direction in which the Snitch was hovering. Still keeping one eye on the Snitch, she saw Marla looking frantically in front of her for what she thought they were chasing. She was so intent, that she hadn’t noticed Sara flipping upside down, changing direction immediately. When she had realized, it was too late.

“THOMAS HAS THE SNITCH! GRYFFINDOR WINS THE MATCH!”

Heather jumped up and down on her seat like everybody else. Screaming and clapping loudly. What an amazing game Qiudditch was! Definitely her favorite sport EVER!

“That was wonderful!” Lily said hugging Heather in her excitement.

“I’ve never seen such an exciting game!” Alice said.

“Those Slytherins though! The nerve...” Heather muttered. “Is it always like that?” she asked.

“Only with the Slytherins,” Remus said. “Come on, let’s go see James and Sirius. Coming Peter?”

“Yeah!” Peter said excitedly, glaring as he passed Heather.

“What was that all about?” Lily asked, noticing Peter’s glance. Heather shrugged.

“I don’t think he’s like me from the beginning,” she said.

“Hmmm...” Lily said frowning.

“Don’t worry about it. Who knows, it could be nothing. Let’s go see Sirius.”

“And Frank!” Alice piped up.

“And James!” Lily said, and they all started laughing.

Heather had gotten onto the soft ground, and was about to make her way to Sirius when she spotted something. Her heart nearly stopped in shock. It was the little boy she had seen crying against the wall, during her vision right after she got off the train! She must have seen this boy's future too! He looked around nervously, and then, thinking nobody was looking, ran off towards the castle.

“Hey! Wait! What’s wrong!?” Heather called but the boy apparently didn’t hear her. She remembered seeing the wizard standing above him, about to curse him. She couldn’t let that happen! She ran to catch up with the little boy. She had to stop him.

A/N: Well? Did you like this cliffie?? Probably not, but maybe you'll reveiw asking for the next chapter! And you know, the morre you review, the more motivated I am to post the next chapter quickly!!! Thanks ofr reading guys. *hugs BTW: I'm going to switch banners soon, so don't be confused too much!

Chapter 9: Those Three Dumb Words
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Chapter Nine~*~Those Three Dumb Words


Heather ran to catch up with the boy, panting heavily. She stopped and saw the boy running back into the Great Hall. She started running again, ignoring the sharp, cutting pain in her side. Finally she entered the Great Hall, just in time to see the boy’s robes whip around a corner. She ran through the hall, her footsteps echoing off the walls. She didn’t know where this boy was going, but it seemed to be very far away. Finally, however, she heard him stop running. She was just about to turn the corner to catch the boy, when she heard him whimpering, followed by a greasy, slick voice.

“And where are you off to? Little Mud-Blood?” the voice asked menacingly. Heather’s stomach curled. Snape.

“I...I was just....bathroom...” the boy muttered terrified. Heather closed her eyes. The boy had been running just to go to the bathroom?! She almost laughed out loud at the absurdity. She heard the boy hit the ground. He was sniffling loudly. Heather dared to poke her head around the corner. It was exactly like in her vision. The first year boy was crying, crumpled up against the wall. Except this time she could see that the face of the wizard was Snape. Heather slowly grasped her wand.

“I think you need a password, Mud-Blood,” Snape said coldly. Heather’s heart thumped at the injustice. Was Snape capable of hurting this boy just because he was a Mud-Blood?!

“But...I don’t know any!” the boy squeaked.

“Well, then. I guess you’re just going to have to deal with the punishments,” Snape sneered, raising his wand high into the air. He brought it down slowly on the boy, but Heather was ready. She knew what to do.

“EXPELLIARMUS!” she roared, leaping around the corner. Snape was slammed off his feet, smashing against the wall. But he still had a firm grip on his wand! Damn! “Expelliarmus!” she yelled again, but Snape was ready this time.

‘”Protego,” he muttered, and her spell rebounded on her. She flew off her feet, and her wand flew out of her hands. The boy gave a terrified yelp and ran away. Snape seemed too distracted with Heather to worry about the boy. “Accio wand,” he said loudly, and Heather’s wand flew into his hands. He grinned as Heather picked herself up off the ground. She was terrified. What an idiot she had been. Why hadn’t she just gone for help? No, she had to be an idiot and run inside while everybody else, teachers included, was outside watching the match. There was nobody to help her now.

“Stay away from me, Snape,” Heather warned. Snape grinned showing crooked teeth.

“Why would I want to do that? You’re awfully pretty, and you’re a Pure-Blood. I am too. You should feel honored that I find you appealing.”

“I can barely contain my excitement,” she hissed as Snape advanced. Heather backed away, until her back hit hard stone. Oh...god. Snape licked his lips, pocketing both of their wands.

“So...once you’ve joined Lord Voldemort, you can become a Death Eater. Our child can be a Death Eater too,” he said. Heather’s eyes widened in terror. She tried to run, but he grabbed her roughly. He turned her around and slammed her into the wall. She tried to scream, but he shoved a hand roughly over her mouth. Pulling out his wand he muttered, “Silencio.” Heather began to cry as he grabbed both of her wrists in a punishing grip, pulling them up over her head and pinning them to the wall with one hand. She struggled, but he pressed his body against hers.

“You will come to your senses, soon,” Snape whispered against her ear. He pressed his knee between her legs, forcing them apart.

“No...” she mouthed, but Snape slammed his mouth against hers painfully. Her heart thundered in terror. His free hand found her blouse and began unbuttoning it. His teeth cut at her lips, his tongue thrusting roughly into her mouth. Heather’s entire being focused then on one, pleading thought... ‘Let Sirius find me...Please let him find me.’

Suddenly, as if an answer to her prayers, Snape was ripped off of her with tremendous force. A dog like snarl filled the hallway. Heather saw Sirius hauling Snape from her by the throat. Snape, who had been as surprised as Heather, didn’t react quickly enough. Sirius pounded his fists mercilessly into Snape’s face, slamming him into the walls.

“Don’t! You! Ever! Touch! Her! AGAIN!” he yelled, delivering a new blow with each word. Sirius had never felt such rage. Sure, he had hated Snape, but never before had he actually wanted to kill him. Now he did, and he knew that he would enjoy it. Snape, however, had gotten over the initial shock of Sirius’ appearance, and had pulled out his wand.

“Crucio!” Snape yelled, but it didn’t work. He stared, and realized he had been using Heather’s wand, and Heather’s wand wasn’t used to that curse. Snape growled and fumbled for his own wand, but Sirius leaped at him again. Snape kicked him in the stomach, and Sirius dropped to the ground. Heather, unknown to the two fighting boys, had moved over to the wand Snape had dropped. She snatched it up and pointed it at Snape.

“Stupify!” she tried to yell, but no sound came out. She had never been good at doing spells without her voice. She tried it again, but she just couldn’t do it. Her hands were shaking badly, and she was having trouble concentrating. She had never had to deal with somebody like Snape before. Snape, however, seemed to realize that their fighting was getting them nowhere, and threw Sirius from him. He ran down the hallway.

“I’ll get you, Blood-Traitors!” he yelled over his shoulder. Heather sank to the floor shaking all over. She looked up at Sirius, who was also shaking, but with rage, not fear. He saw her face and immediately wished he could have punched Snape one more time. The bastard.

“Merlin, are you ok?” he said, dropping down next to her. Heather had tears running silently down her face. Sirius just did the first thing his instincts told him to do. He pulled her into his lap, wrapping his arms around her in a comforting embrace. “It’s alright. God, when I saw he had you pinned to the wall...” Sirius broke off, squinting his eyes shut in pain of the memory. “My whole world flipped upside-down.” Heather put her arms around him and buried her face in his shoulder, convulsing in silent sobs. She needed his strength. Sirius frowned, wondering why she hadn’t said anything yet. He had thought she would have at least let out a sob or something. He pulled her away and saw that she had soaked his shoulder. His heart broke.

“Aw, sweetheart,” he muttered, placing his hand on her cheek, wiping away some stray tears. “Nobody’s ever going to hurt you again, understand?”

“Thank you,” Heather muttered mutely, but remembered she couldn’t talk. Sirius frowned in confusion.

“What happened to your voice?” he said worriedly. Heather picked up her wand, motioning towards her throat. Sirius frowned for a second, and then understood.

“Snape put a silencing charm on you?” he asked, trying to keep his rage in check. Snape would pay for this. “Here,” Sirius murmured, muttering the counter curse.

“Thanks,” Heather said rather hoarsely. She looked up at him, love in her eyes. “I don’t know what would have happened if you hadn’t shown up...”

“I don’t even want to think about that,” Sirius said, closing his eyes at the thought of Snape forcing himself on Heather.

“How did you find me?” she asked.

“I didn’t see you after the match, so I came looking for you,” Sirius explained, smiling warmly. Heather smiled too.

“I owe you so much...I...” she broke off. She didn’t want to admit her love to him. If he didn’t love her back, she didn’t want to feel that terrible rejection. He had never actually said the words to her. She looked away hurriedly. Sirius seemed to be reading her mind. He placed his hand under her chin, urging her to look him in the eye.

“I love you, Heather Malfoy,” he said softly. Heather smiled, tears in her eyes.

“I love you too,” she muttered, and he pulled her slowly into a warm, tender kiss.


A/N: Ok, I know, I know. Extremely fluffy. I thought a little fluff was needed for this chapter though. If you didn’t like it, I understand, but I thought it was kind of sweet. Please review, let me know what you think!

Chapter 10: That's What Friends Are For
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Chapter Ten~*~That's What Friends Are For


The next few weeks were the best weeks Heather could ever remember having. Even when her parents were alive and together. She, her group of friends, and the Marauders came to know each other quite well. Sirius started hanging around Heather, and where one Marauder went, they all went. James was extremely eager as well, because Heather’s best friend was Lily Evans. Everybody was currently engaged in a rather vicious snowball fight, boys against girls. James, seeming to have only one target, which was, of course Lily, kept cheating and using his wand to conjure colored snowballs. Heather laughed as a bright pink snowball hit Lily right in the face. James winced, apparently knowing he was in big trouble.

“You’re going to pay for that one,” Lily said, smiling and wiping the snow off her face. Pulling out her own wand, she waved it around, pointing it at the snow. A snowball began forming. James snorted loudly.

“How boring! Can’t you do anything exciting with yours? At least mine was colored!” he complained loudly, but stopped as the snowball plowed him over. Everybody burst out laughing as James sat up, grimacing. “It tastes like vinegar!” he yelled.

“Boring? Me? Never!” Lily taunted. Heather watched the couple with dancing eyes. She looked over and saw Remus, Peter, and Alex sitting on the side, watching. Alex was chewing gum loudly, looking decidedly bored. Peter kept stealing glances at Alex, and then smiling when he saw bits of the snowball fight.

“Why don’t you join us, you three?” Heather asked, smiling. Alex rolled her eyes.

“I honestly don’t see why rolling around in freezing snow is fun,” she drawled.

“Remus?” Heather asked temptingly.

“No way,” Remus said smiling and shaking his head. “It’s much safer over here.” Heather opened her mouth to ask Peter, but he glared at her, as though daring her to ask. She closed her mouth, looking away. Why didn’t he like her?

“Party-poopers!” Sirius said loudly. “I personally find it extremely fun to pound people into the snow!” and he began wadding up a snowball, eyeing Heather. Heather tried to give a serious ‘Don’t-you-dare’ look, but failed miserably as Sirius waggled his eyebrows, and she burst into laughter. He threw the snowball at her, but she ducked. She pulled out her own wand, laughing as she saw him readying for battle.

“You shouldn’t even bother! I will kick your butt!” Heather said as she made the snowball zoom around his head for a few seconds, then, without warning flying up and landing right on top of his head.

“I’ll have you know, Missy, that I was named Snowball champ in four different countries,” Sirius said, standing on a snow mound. He gave a mock bow but was hit on the side of the face by a snowball from James who was laughing.

“I hate to break it to you mate, but Stupidity isn’t a country,” he said, causing everybody to laugh, even Sirius. Sirius waved his wand and a sparkling crown of ice appeared. He placed it on his head. Heather grinned wickedly and raised her wand slightly, trying not to catch Sirius attention.

“I am king of this mound,” Sirius was saying, conjuring a matching staff. But he was stopped from saying more when everybody burst out laughing. James’ eyes widened in surprise, and then closed in mirth. Sirius looked around confused, looking at Heather for help.

“What?” he asked, grinning. He saw Remus throwing an amused glance at something above his head.

“Crown,” Alex mouthed. He smiled and took it off. On the front the word “LOSER” was written in flashing lights. He began laughing too, and he saw Heather laughing guiltily.

“Oh, nobody gets away with making a fool of Sirius the Great!” he yelled, running towards her. Heather shrieked and ran away. Everybody began cheering them on as they pointed their wands at each other, trying to slow one another down.

“Elkellius!” Heather laughed over her shoulder at Sirius, who was in hot pursuit. He stopped as huge antlers shot out of his head. He laughed to, and then aimed his wand at her, smiling wickedly.

“Oh, Heather hurry, he’s going to...” Lily squealed excitedly, laughing through her words. But it was too late.

“Icellum!” Sirius yelled, running up to her. Her feet lost their traction, and she realized that it wasn’t snow she was running on, but solid ice! She laughed as she flapped her arms to keep her balance. Her running had given her great momentum, however, and she couldn’t stop. Slipping, she began to fall. She winced, ready to hit the hard ice, but strong arms caught her instead. She looked up into Sirius’ chocolate brown eyes. He was grinning stupidly at her, noticing how close they were.

“Thanks,” she muttered, blushing. They realized that everybody had been watching them, and James cleared his throat trying not to laugh.

“This might be a little more romantic, Padfoot, if you didn’t have antlers,” he commented.

“Shut up,” Sirius said, grinning grudgingly. He waved his wand and they disappeared, as did the ice. Heather stood up, not really wanting to move away from him. “Come on,” Sirius said, smiling even wider. They moved to finish the game off. After awhile, Alex went in rolling he eyes and shivering. Peter obviously wanted to follow her.

“I’d say Wormtail’s got girl trouble,” Sirius muttered, smiling wryly. “Maybe he’ll ask her to Hogsmeade this weekend.”

“He’s got girl trouble with the wrong girl,” Heather muttered. “Alex is with a different guy each week!” Sirius sighed. “Hey, I’ve got a question.”

“Shoot,” Sirius said, looking down at her.

“What do all of your nicknames mean?” she asked, and immediately saw the roller-coaster of emotions passing across his face at top speed. Sirius shifted uncomfortably. Could he tell her? He was sure she wouldn’t tell anybody else...but he had promised Remus he would never tell anybody.

“It’s alright, Sirius. You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want,” Heather said, trying to sound light and casual. But inside she was rather hurt. What was he keeping from her? What was it he didn’t want her to know? She started to walk away, trying to hide her feelings.

“Heather...” Sirius said, grasping her arm.

“What?” she asked, a little too eagerly. Sirius tried, but he couldn’t betray his friend like that.

“I’ll see you later?” he said stupidly. Her face fell.

“Oh...yeah. Sure,” she said, walking away quickly.

“Damn,” Sirius muttered, kicking the wall. Then he cursed again as now his foot was throbbing. He had to talk to Remus. He couldn’t keep Heather in the dark like this. She was like a part of him, and keeping her in the dark was like throwing a shadow over half of his heart. It hurt.


“Are you okay, Heather?” Sara asked as Heather walked into the girls dorm.

“Yeah, yeah I’m fine. Why weren’t you outside?” Heather asked, trying to change the subject. Sara’s face brightened.

“Sorry, I was working on the Quidditch line up,” and she held up a large piece of paper with different red and blue dots moving around, and arrows flashing. Heather nodded.

“Who are the blue dots?” Heather said, realizing the red as Gryffindor.

“Ravenclaw. We play them in about two weeks,” Sara said anxiously.

“You guys will do great,” Heather said, walking into thee bathroom. What had started out as a great day, was now completely down the drain. Sirius was already keeping secrets from her. She turned on the faucet, pulling a washcloth off the shelf. She wet it and washed her face, willing herself not to cry. She crushed the cloth to her eyes, stopping all tears from running down her face. She started to feel very dizzy. She shouldn’t be this upset. She started shaking, and began to realize that she wasn’t this upset. She recognized these symptoms...she was going to have another vision. She began to hyperventilate, sinking down to the floor. Not again...she thought, closing her eyes. She couldn’t breath. Slowly, she fell to the ground, her eyes glazing over. Things started to go dark, and then she was gone.

She was not in the bathroom, but in a dark alleyway. She looked around, terrified. What would she see this time? She heard loud clashes, like trash cans being knocked over. Suddenly, two people came panting down the alley, yelling spells over their shoulders. A man and a woman. Heather opened her mouth to say something and then remembered they wouldn’t be able to hear her anyways. Then, seconds later, at least twenty people, all dressed in black cloaks came running, wands out. Heather recognized them as Death Eaters.

“CRUCIO!” at least fifteen of the figures yelled.

“NO!” Heather protested, reaching for her own wand, but it wasn’t there. The two people were screaming in agony, and then silence seemed to descend as a figure appeared quite abruptly in the middle of the crowd. The person shoved his way through, and Heather’s breath caught in her throat. It was Lord Voldemort. He raised his wand, and brought it down with a swift, deadly movement.

“Avada Kedavra,” he muttered, and the two people were dead. Heather didn’t know what to do. She couldn’t just sit here. She ran out there, and began screaming her lungs out at the Dark Lord. He merely stared through her to the dead bodies, and then looked up to the sky. “MORSEMORDRE!” he screamed triumphantly, and all the Death Eaters and he vanished. Heather looked up at the sky and saw the Dark Mark floating above her. She began to sob. What had these people done to deserve this? She had to look at them. She turned around slowly, afraid of what she might see.

Her jaw dropped open, as she realized the extreme resemblance to her friend. She knew then and there that Alex’s parents had just been killed.


Heather sat up immediately, breathing harshly. She remembered that she was still in the bathroom. She waited for the nausea to come, and it did, yet it wasn’t so bad. She didn’t actually throw up. That was a plus. But then she rememebred what she had just seen.

“ALEX!” she yelled. She had to tell somebody. They had to help them before it happened. “ALEX!” The bathroom door burst open and Sara saw Heather laying on the ground.

“Heather, are you alright?!” She asked, pulling Heather to one of the beds. Just then Alex walked in, chatting with Lily.

“Alex!” Heather said, leaping up.

“What’s wrong?” Alex said, frowning.

“I just had a vision! Your parents, we have to help them! They’re in danger!” Heather enthused, terrified. Alex snorted.

“Of course they’re in danger! They’re always in danger! They’re Aurors, after all.”

“NO! I just saw Voldemort killing them!” Heather said, crying now. There was a shocked silence, and Heather could see that Alex thought her crazy. “Alex, you must...” but she was broken off by an owl fluttering through a window. It was pitch black, and had a small envelope tied to its leg. Everybody looked from the owl to Heather. Lily walked over and untied the letter. The owl took off.

“Its...for you, Alex,” Lily whispered. Heather’s heart slammed. It couldn’t have happened already! She had JUST seen it! Alex rolled her eyes, trying to look calm, but they couldn’t miss the way her hands shook as she opened the letter. Heather watched with baited breath as Alex scanned the note. Heather’s heart sank as she saw Alex’s eyes fill with tears.

“Alex...?” Sara murmured uncertainly. Alex let her arms drop to her sides. Then she turned her stare at Heather. Not a sad stare, but an accusing stare, a stare filled with anguish and heartache and fury.

“YOU!” Alex ground out. “THIS IS YOUR FAULT! YOUR KIND DID THIS TO THEM! YOU AND YOUR STINKING DEATH EATER FAMILY!! YOU’RE GOING TO BE JUST LIKE THEM!”

“Alex!” Lily said standing up angrily. “It’s not Heather’s fault!”

“IT IS! SHE KNEW ABOUT IT, AND DIDN’T SAY ANYTHING!”

“I didn’t know about it until just now!” Heather said, her eyes tearing up again.

“I hate you! I HATE YOU GET OUT! YOU KILLED MY PARENTS!” Alex roared, walking up to Heather and slapping her across the face. There was a stunned silence, in which Alex ran into the bathroom, sobbing hysterically. Sara rushed in to be with her.

“Heather...” Lily tried to comfort.

“Don’t,” Heather snapped. “I’m fine. I’m going for a walk,” and she left down the steps. She laid a tender hand on her cheek, it was stinging. She caught a glimpse of herself in the reflection of one of the glass books cases, and winced to see that the whole left side of her cheek was bright red. She pulled her hair around to cover it. She didn’t know where exactly she was going, but she had to get away. What was happening to her? She could see the future! Yet it wasn’t an exact time in the future. She had to see that murder seconds before it happened. And the one with the little boy took weeks to happen! How could she make sense of any of this if she couldn’t even tell when it was going to happen?! She was so caught up in her thinking that she didn’t really even notice how dark it was getting as she walked outside onto the grounds for some fresh air.


“Are you coming Padfoot? Moony is going to change any minute!” James said excitedly. Sirius nodded, his mind on other stuff. Stuff like Heather.

“Hey, can I ask you guys something?” Sirius said earnestly.

“No,” James said jokingly, but upon seeing his friends face stopped. “Sure, what’s up?”

“I was wondering what you guys would think if I told Heather about...” but he was interrupted as Remus gave a low yowl. Sirius looked and saw the clouds moving slowly away from the moon, uncovering it, allowing it to beat down on the four students.

“This is going to be so cool!” Peter squealed. James snorted.

“Do you mind if we talk about this later, Padfoot? Right now isn’t a good time...” James broke off as wolf ripped through the body of his best friend. Sirius nodded.

“Ready?” he asked. James nodded, grinning. Simultaneously, a rat, a stag, and a shaggy black dog appeared on the grounds. Closely following their transformation was Remus, now a deep gray werewolf. He let a howl out like an animal that hadn’t been able to stretch its legs in years. Remus began prowling away, looking for pray of some sort. Sirius barked loudly, trying to get the werewolves attention. He frowned. Normally Remus was pretty responsive around his friends, even in his werewolf state.

Sirius tried to see what he was focusing on. Then a stag galloped up to him, fear in his eyes. Making sure Remus’ back was still turned, he turned back into a human.

“There is somebody sitting by the lake!” James said before turning back. Sirius stared, unbelieving. He looked at the rat that was sitting next to him. The rat gave a rather human like shrug, unable to see that far. Sirius pricked his ears, listening intently. He heard something. A soft sniffling. His instincts took over. He knew that sniffling.... He barked loudly at Remus, trying to get his attention, but the werewolf was starting to prowl slowly, trying to see if he was seeing a human or not. Sirius didn’t intend to give him time. Sirius leapt in front of Remus, scaring him. Remus let out a warning snap, trying to get closer to the lake. Sirius barked at the stag to help him.

James bent his head, his antlers driving the werewolf back. He received a large scratch on his head, from Sirius or Remus he wasn’t sure. He was very careful to stay clear of Remus’ teeth. James looked sideways and saw that Sirius had worked himself into a small panic. The werewolf, growing bored of being blocked by these creatures, plowed through them, running towards the lake.

Sirius turned his head around.

“Not good, not good,” he thought. He was sure that person was familiar, but no...it couldn’t be. Life wouldn’t be that terrible to him.... He ran forward, trying to intercept the werewolf, but being thrown to the side like a bologna sandwich each time. Sirius closed his eyes in frustration, but then widened them in terror. His worst fears had come true. Heather was sitting by the lake, and Remus, a werewolf, was making his way towards her at top speed.

Chapter 11: Wounds
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Chapter Eleven~*~Wounds


Heather looked up as she saw something running at top speed towards her. She frowned trying to see what it was. She stood up, the noises of many feet reaching her ears. Then she saw another form running beside it. It was a shaggy black dog, very scruffy looking, and barking frantically. The dog was chasing a...no....

Heather stared as she took in the creature she had only ever read about. Her brain barely took in the fact that a werewolf was running top speed for her. She knew that the worst thing to do was turn around and run, but another thing she couldn’t do was stand here and wait until it ripped her to pieces. Clinging to her wand, she glared at the towering creature.

Sirius rammed sideways into Remus, trying his best to throw him off course. James came galloping up behind him, thrusting his antlers into the path of the werewolf. Nothing stopped him, and Sirius realized this was going to become very violent, very quickly. What he hadn’t expected, was a large spell to hit him full on. It slashed across his side, and he saw that Heather had been the cause. Pain blinded him, but he still focused what little concentration he had on deflecting Remus. Remus was then hit with a spell, and also cut, right across the face. Remus dropped to the ground, yelping, with crimson blood trickling down his cheek. Sirius took the opportunity to run towards Heather. He barked at her, and she raised her wand, terrified. Sirius barked at the stag, which appeared suddenly, signaling him to deal with the injured Remus while he got Heather out of danger.

Heather stared as the shaggy black dog advanced. What was she to do? She could see that she had already wounded it. She felt terrible about hurting the poor dog so bad. She had missed, meaning to get the werewolf, but right now, she wasn’t so sure she was sorry. This dog looked vicious. It kept barking at her, and looking frantically at the werewolf. What did it want?

Sirius didn’t know if he could chance turning into a human, or if that would trigger something in Remus. One human was bad...but two? As he looked into her terrified face, however, he decided that he didn’t really care if he got hurt. He would do anything to keep her safe. He transformed into a human, and Heather’s eyes turned the size of saucers.

"Sirius?" she asked. "What..." but she was broken off as he covered her mouth firmly, looking over at the wolf who was now stirring slightly, looking around, listening for anything. Sirius nodded his head at the stag, and James understood. Keep Remus distracted. The werewolf got up, and started following James instead. Sirius turned back to Heather, and realized that she had been struggling against his hold. He let her go, and then grabbed her hands. She opened her mouth to speak again, but he laid his finger

demandingly on her lips, urging her to be quiet. She glared, but nodded, very confused. He pulled her along behind him, looking around, watching for unknown dangers. He froze as he heard the thumping of feet however. The werewolf was running at them again.

"Damn," he whispered, shoving Heather against a tree, shielding her with his own body. He felt long nails cutting into his back, wincing as he was injured yet again. Seconds later, the stag erupted from nowhere, slamming his head into the wolf. Remus yelped, moving away from Sirius and Heather. "Don’t. Move." Sirius said firmly, just before turning into a dog. He barked at Remus, who turned his attention instead on Sirius. Sirius began running at top speed towards the Forbidden Forest. The werewolf, used to running in there to search around with the other Marauders, thought that they were going on their usual adventures, and passed Sirius up, running ahead.

After awhile, Sirius stopped and ran back to James. James transformed just as Sirius returned. Panting and limping. He looked at Heather, who hadn’t moved an inch, but looked like she’d just seen a ghost. Sirius smiled at the bizarreness of the scene.

"Remus is a werewolf," he said, smiling.

"You don’t say?" Heather said sarcastically. "Prongs, Padfoot, Moony, and Wormtail. I see... but...Wormtail? What does Peter turn into? Where is he?"

"Good question," James said, looking around. There was a small rustling, and James saw a rat hiding behind one of the trees.

"It’s a good thing you were there to help us, Peter," Sirius said sarcastically, still panting slightly. Peter transformed, and Heather saw him huddling in a corner. She glared as she heard Sirius’ breathing growing more ragged.

"Bloody hell. I think I’m going to pass out," he muttered just before dropping onto the ground. Heather stared in shock. Then she saw how pale he was in the moonlight. Blood soaked his shirt, and she remembered the spell she had sent at him. James lifted him up off the ground.

"Damn, looks like Moony took a chunk out of him too..." James said.

"WHAT?! HE’S BEEN BIT!?! Oh, this is all my fault, if I hadn’t..." Heather started, grabbing Sirius’ hand in fear. What had she done?!

"Heather, it’s not your fault. And it was from Moony’s claws, not his teeth. He’s not going to turn into a werewolf," James assured. "He’s going to need some help though," he said. "He’s lost a lot of blood."

"Right," Heather said frantically, trying to pick him up with all the strength she could muster. For somebody as lean as he was, he sure was heavy! She felt muscle ripple beneath her fingers as she lifted him up off the ground, and tried lifting his arm around her shoulder. She noticed James watching her, his eyebrows raised in an amused manner. Heather stared in terror. "Aren’t you going to help? Your friend is badly injured! I can barely lift him! He will have lost a lot of blood by the time I get him up to the castle!!!" she screeched in horror. James smiled, realizing how much Heather really did care for him.

"Heather, I’m going to tell you a little secret, alright? But you can’t tell anybody," he said. Heather frowned.

"James, I don’t have time!"

"Ok, are you ready?" James looked around in mock secrecy. "You’re a witch..." he whispered. “You know, magic?" Heather almost fell over with her stupidity. She had been so afraid for Sirius she had completely forgotten about magic.

"Mobilus Corpus," she muttered, and Sirius floated easily off the ground. "Thanks..." she said, blushing.

"Anytime," James said. "Now, I’ve got to go baby-sit a werewolf. See ya." With that a large stag transformed before her. She couldn’t help but stare in wonder.

~~

Sirius opened his eyes, his head pounding. He didn’t know where he was, or why he was in so much pain. Slowly, as a cold breeze washed over him, he realized he was in a classroom. Had he fallen asleep in Professor Binn’s class again? He opened his eyes wider, and saw Heather standing over him with a washcloth, cleaning blood off his side. He frowned...blood? Was he injured? And then the memory of Remus running towards Heather flashed before him. His breathing quickened as he sat up abruptly.


"Areyoualrightthen?" he said, words spilling out in a rush of fear. His eyes scanned her entire body, checking for injuries. He saw none, and closed his eyes in relief. Then he winced, realizing what his sudden movements had done to his wounds.

"What did you say?" she asked, holding his shoulders, trying support his weight.

"I said...are you alright, then?" Sirius muttered through gritted teeth. She rolled her eyes.

"You’re the one that’s been torn to shreds, not me. Come on, hold still, I’m trying to heal you!"

"Why do you have to wash it off? It hurts! Just heal it!"

"There is too much blood in the way! I*ll never be able to see what I*m doing. Quite whining, and hold still!" Heather said, frowning, as his actions caused more blood to seep onto the table she had him sprawled on. He looked at her, his eyes full of mischief. She blushed, wetting the cloth with her wand again. He leaned back on one arm, watching her discomfort. She blushed even deeper, and she knew exactly why he was looking so smug. In order to clean his wound, she had needed to take off his shirt. Sure, she had imagined what his abs might look like, and she had fantasized a few times about what it would feel like to have his muscular arms wrapped around her. It was undeniable, however, that nothing could have prepared her for this. His entire torso rippled with muscle, sculpted with precision from years of being a Beater. She cleared her throat, extremely aware of how beautiful he was. What infuriated her, was the fact that he knew it, and was smiling knowingly as she went about examining the scratches Remus had left.

"Having fun?" Sirius said, wiggling his eyebrows. She glared up at him, trying to look stern.

"If you*ll remember, I*m the one who is in perfect health and holding a wand," she said, raising her wand in warning.

"Yeah, thanks to me," he said. She frowned, knowing that he was right. He had saved her life tonight.

"Thanks...a lot," she said.

"Wow, I am overwhelmed with the gratitude," he said sarcastically. She sighed in frustration, her entire face turning red as he brushed his hair out of his eyes. He noticed. "Do I embarrass you that much?" he asked in amusement.

"No," she scoffed, trying to keep her voice even. She raised her wand, and poked him in the side. He howled in pain, but the wound healed.

"Merlin, do you have to be so..." but he was interrupted again when she poked the deep scratches on his back. He glared at her for a second, as if about to finish his complaints, but stopped when he realized there was no pain left. He stood up, rolling his shoulders around, and stretching his arms, checking whether it hurt or not. He raised his eyebrows, very impressed. His wounds were perfectly healed. "Where did you learn to heal like that?"

"I picked up a few things in the orphanage," she muttered, watching enthralled as he tested his ribs for any signs of pain.

"Perfect," he muttered, feeling better than ever.

"Yeah," Heather muttered, not realizing he was talking about his wound.

"I'm going to get you a buffalo for Christmas," he said, watching her face to see if she was even listening.

"Yeah," she said again. Sirius smiled, realizing that she hadn*t really heard a word of what he had said.

"I'm going to kiss you," he said. That got her attention. Her eyes collided with his, freezing with an impact that she could have sworn shook the entire room.

"Really?" she asked, swallowing, half in nerves, half in anticipation.

"Yeah, really. Do you want me to?" he asked, walking towards her. She frowned thinking. No, her brain said instantly. But her heart decided to take it*s own course of action, and spoke for her.

"Yes," she breathed. Seconds later he was in front of her, his arms around her waist. She leaned up eagerly, and his mouth met hers. She closed her eyes, her heart pounding in her throat. It was the most blissful thing, and yet it was so real. She parted her lips, inviting him further, and he took the invitation eagerly, thrusting his tongue forward, caressing her tongue in sweet, agonizingly slow movements. She thought she would pass out in both shock and thrill. Sirius didn't seem to want to stop there, but he broke away, panting heavily.

"Sorry, I just...got carried away..." he said choppily, grinning ear to ear. She smiled.

"It's ok. I'll forgive you this time. But only because I feel bad for you."

"You feel bad for me?" he asked, frowning in confusion.

"Well, how could I not, with what a terrible kisser you are!" she said teasingly. He feigned anger.

"Now you're going to get it," he said, advancing. She backed up, shaking her head and smiling.

"I don't think so. I'm the one with the wand here!" she said. "And you're injured!"

"Not anymore, thanks to you," he said. "I'm fit as a fiddle. And as for the wand part..." he quickly snatched the wand out of her hands. She stopped in surprise, realizing she hadn't even tried to keep a hold on it.

"Give it back!" she said, laughing slightly. He held it high above his head, and since he was so much taller than her, she felt like an idiot, trying to reach up and
get her wand. "You are such a bully!" she said in frustration. He bowed his head in mock pride.

"Why thank you, my dear. Now, take back that bit about my kissing."

"No!" she said, smiling and jumping up to get her wand. She felt like a child, unable to get her wand back.

"Say it, or I*ll never give it back," he said. But Heather had a better idea. Suddenly she burst into tears, covering her face with her hands and dropping to the floor in wracking sobs. Sirius' eyes widened in terror. "Heather, I'm sorry! I didn't mean to make you cry, damnit! Heather, please, I'm really sorry. Here," he knelt down beside her, handing her wand back to her.

"Ha!" she yelled, snatching back her wand and laughing in triumph. Sirius' pursed his lips.

"Cheater," he said, smiling against his will. He sat down on the floor beside her, and pulled her into his arms.

"Why didn’t you tell me about Remus?" Heather asked, her laughter abating as she laid her head on his shoulder.

"Well, Remus made me promise never to tell anybody.
I didn’t want to betray him," Sirius admitted, ashamed of himself. "I’m sorry."

"It’s alright. I’m sorry too, for being so nosy," Heather said.

"No, I want you to be nosy. I mean, I want to be a part of my life. I love you, and I’ve never loved anybody before, not even my family. I want you to know everything," he said. Heather smiled slightly. Wasn’t this only supposed to happen in those cheesy love movies? Where was the opera music?

Sirius sighed, obviously deep in thought. "What are you thinking about?" she asked.

"Well, I am thinking whether I should ask you to go to Hogsmeade with me this weekend, but I’m feeling kind of nervous."

"Well, if it makes you feel any better, I’m going to say yes," she supported.

"Yeah, that helps," he said, and they snuggled closer.

A/N: Hope you liked this chapter. Please review...

Chapter 12: Revenge
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Chapter Twelve~*~Revenge


Peter watched as Heather hurried off with Sirius floating high in the air, a frantic look of concern on her face as blood trickled down Sirius’ side. Leaning against the wall he sighed. What a disgusting girl. In no way did she deserve his friend. Sure, she was a pure-blood, but she was a fake. She obviously didn’t accept the fact that she was a Malfoy. Sirius also was having some troubles accepting, but Peter was sure he might be able to convince him, or at least that’s what he thought until this girl showed up. She was ruining everything! How was he supposed to show Sirius the error of his ways if he was busy panting over that girl! Pursing his lips in fury, he folded his arms. He was going to need help. He had to break them up.

He heard the distant pounding of hooves on soft ground. As though a drum-roll, awaiting his own decision. He watched the glistening white stag hurrying after Remus. He should go with them. That’s what he was supposed to do. That’s what a true friend would do. But how could he pretend to be happy and care-free with the strong surge of anger he was feeling? He knew that he wouldn’t be able to hide it for much longer. He balled his hands into fat fists. He would make up some excuse for not helping James. They would believe him. Nobody ever thought stupid, fat little Pettigrew was capable of thinking for himself anyways.

Walking slowly, he let the cool night air blow though his rather scraggily, sand colored hair. His beady eyes looked around, taking in the beautiful scenery surrounding him. Hogwarts was a different place at night. A place he had gotten to know very well lately. Almost every night he would sneak out onto the grounds, escaping the constant feeling of being less than his perfect friends. He was the runt, and wasn’t quite sure why he had been accepted into the Marauders in the first place. He supposed James had always felt a little sorry for him. Remus and Sirius followed whatever James did, and so he was accepted. But no matter how many times he said he was a Marauder, he never felt like one.

James was athletic, wonderful at Quidditch, handsome, funny, and had the most beautiful girl in Hogwarts, Lily Evans.

Remus was cool and collected, responsible, smart, and had his own sense of humor. It was the kind you wouldn’t understand unless you were paying close attention.

Sirius black was a god among the girls. He was ruggedly handsome, charming, intelligent, and had the devil-may-care attitude that the girls adored. All he’d had to do was smile and he had already had a “Sirius Black” fan club following him around in the first year.

Then there was Peter. That fat little boy that followed them around. That clumsy idiot that copied off his friend’s homework. He has the beady eyes, is far from attractive, and if you’re looking for charm, you’ve got the wrong kid. No girls worshiped him. There was no “Peter Pettigrew” fan club. He was not any good at Quidditch. He wasn’t funny, he wasn’t cool, or responsible, or any of those things his friends held with ease. He was the misfit. He was that other Marauder. He was Peter Pettigrew, and he hated it.

Stuffing his hands in his pockets, he walked up the steps leading to the castle. Opening the doors quietly, he poked his head inside the darkened room. Nobody was to be found, so he slipped inside and closed the doors. His footsteps reverberated throughout the empty room, bouncing back to him angrily, as if telling him off for being up so late at night.

He pulled out his wand and muttered, “Lumos,” before sighing deeply. He walked slowly, deciding to head back to the Gryffindor Common Room. He shuffled his feet, staring at the floor, thinking hard, his mind back on Heather Malfoy. He was about to turn the corner when he heard an odd noise. He stopped, looking up. It sounded as if somebody had a very bad cold. He looked around, and saw that in his frustration, he had completely missed the girl that was huddled in a corner, crying against her hands. He squinted, raising his wand light so that it bounced off the girl. It was Alex! His heart thudded in his chest. He had had a crush on this girl ever since fourth year. So often had he wanted to ask her out, but he knew that, just like every other girl, she would reject him. Now, however, things were different.

He tried not to smile at the state she was in. She seemed to be quite upset. Perfect.

“Alex, what’s wrong?” he whispered urgently, kneeling down beside her. She looked up at him, her face blotchy and red. He saw them, and his heart fell a little bit. Was he really going to use her like this? She let out another bout of sobs, and Peter couldn’t resist putting his arm around her. “It’s alright, you can tell me!” he comforted.

“My...my...” she began, sniffling loudly. “My parents are...d-dead!” she said with a final sob. Peter stared in shock.

“How?” he asked in astonishment.

“I honestly don’t know! Death Eaters I suppose...but you know what I really think?” she said, her eyes narrowing in hatred.

“What is it?” he asked soothingly, surprising even himself.

“I think Heather sent the Death Eaters to kill my parents! She figured out they were going to patrol, and told He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named!” she said dramatically. Peter stared at her, very confused. He didn’t really care what she thought about it though, what he really cared about was the fact that she obviously didn’t like Heather either. He grinned. This was working better than he had thought.

“I can believe it of her,” Peter said sadly. “The girl is a monster.”

“That she is!” Alex said in indignation. Peter nodded, clapping her on the shoulder.

“She should be punished!” he said angrily.

“Yeah! For what she did to my parents!” she said tearily.

“No one should get away with such a crime,” Peter said, standing up and pulling her up with him. Alex nodded vigorously.

“ Thanks, Peter. You’re a great friend,” she said, looking up at him. Peter’s heart did a back flip.

“I try...” he whispered. He cleared his throat.

“What do you reckon we do about Heather? I mean, she could kill others as well! Your friend James’ parents are Aurors too. She could find out about them from James, and he would unsuspectingly tell her stuff that she could repeat to You-Know-Who!”

“Exactly. We should warn people. I think I know somebody who could help us. She won’t feel threatened by us, Alex. We need to ally ourselves with somebody she really fears.”

“Yes...” Alex whispered, wiping tears from her face now, a face filled with determination. Then she smiled. “But the only person I can think of is her cousin. Lucius. She hates him, he terrifies her!” Peter smiled.

“Do you know the way to the Slytherin Common Room?” he asked. She nodded.

“But he is just as bad as she! He is a Malfoy too!” Alex yelled angrily.

“But he wasn’t the one that got the information about your parents from you,” Peter explained. Alex looked away, seemingly confused.

“And what about the password?” she said, giving in. He nodded.

“I’m sure the Slytherin Prefects are still wandering around, making sure children like us aren’t wandering around.”

“Let’s go find one,” she said, and they took off, wandering the halls. Twice they had to hide from the Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw Prefects. But soon they found who they were looking for.

“Snape!” Peter whispered. Snape jumped and turned his wand on Alex and Peter.

“Oh, it’s you. What do you want, Pettigrew,” he said dully. Peter smiled.

“Nice to see you too. I need to talk to Lucius,” he said. Snape raised an eyebrow.

“So?”

“So I need the password,” Peter said annoyed. Snape narrowed his eyes. “Come one, Snape. Just one more time.”

“Pettigrew, I’ve let you into the Slytherin Common Room too many times to count, but I don’t think I should let you take her in there,” Snape said. Alex glared, and Snape sneered back. She was also surprised. Peter went into the Slytherin’s Common Room? Why? He’s a Marauder!

“She’s of pure blood,” Peter argued.

“Her parents were Aurors,” Snape countered, both annoying Alex. They were talking as if she wasn’t even there.

“And they’re dead,” Alex said firmly. Snape stopped, focusing his attention on her. “A Gryffindor betrayed me, and I want revenge.”

“Well, now. Revenge is something I can deal with,” Snape said, with satisfaction. Alex nodded. “The password is ‘Serpensortia.’”

“Much obliged,” Peter said with a grin, and he and Alex hurried away.

Many minutes later, Peter and Alex were standing outside the gargoyle that guarded the Slytherin Common Room.

“Serpensortia,” Alex muttered a little nervously, and the statue gave a curt nod, moving aside. Peter looked bored as the gargoyle moved, but Alex stared in shock, having never been this far under Hogwarts. Peter grabbed her hand, leading her inside. There was a collective silence when they entered. Alex almost gasped out loud as she entered. Everything was a dark, depressing green color. Serpents were carved into the wooden floorboards. Pictures of dark, evil looking wizards covered the walls, and each seemed to be glaring at them. Peter nodded as everybody stared. A few people nodded back, but his eyes were now focused only on Lucius Malfoy, who was lounging on a couch. His view of him was somewhat blocked, however, by a scantily dressed girl. She was straddling him, and had her mouth buried in the side of his neck, her entire body pressing against his. Lucius looked rather bored. The girl began to move downwards, her fingers starting to unbutton his shirt.

“Hello, Narcissa,” Peter said. “Lucius.”

“Go back to your business!” Lucius barked at the eagerly listening Slytherins. Many jumped and looked away darkly, continuing their previous conversations. Some, like Lucius, went back to snogging heartily. “What brings you here, Peter.”

“I need your help,” Peter said, pulling up a chair. Alex went to stand beside him nervously. Looking around. Never in her life had she been in the Slytherin Common Room. Now that she had, she realized that it looked more like a bar room than anything.

“You need my help? What fo- Damnit, woman! Can you give me a break?!” he yelled, getting annoyed with Narcissa’s constant nuzzling. He shoved her roughly onto the floor. Narcissa rolled her heavily lined eyes and stood up, adjusting her short skirt. She walked over to a table, picked up a wand, a conjured a bottle of dark red liquid. Peter recognized it as Fire-Whiskey.

“We need you to help break up Sirius Black and your cousin,” Alex said. Lucius looked at her as if she was the most disgusting thing he’d ever seen.

“And why should I help you?” he asked.

“Because you know you don’t want Heather to be with Sirius,” Peter said. Lucius opened his mouth to argue, but realize that it was the truth.

“We were thinking you could help us. She needs to be punished for what she did to my parents,” Alex explained.

“We could kill her,” Peter suggested.

“That hardly helps me. She needs to live. I need her to join the Death Eaters...”

“NO!” Alex yelled, and everybody turned to stare at her.

“I beg your pardon?” Lucius said dangerously.

“Look, I know they are the ones that killed your parents, but it’s the only way to punish the girl,” Peter said softly. Alex just stared, too upset to do anything. What had she gotten herself into?

“She doesn’t want to be Death Eater, that will be punishment enough for you, and reward enough for me,” Lucius said.

“Fine, so we just tell her she joins or we’ll kill her,” Peter said. “But we won’t actually kill her.”

“You idiot. She has already made it clear that she will die before joining the Dark Lord,” Lucius said.

“But she...” Alex said, wanting him to know of Heather’s connection with You-Know-Who. Lucius didn’t want to hear any of it.

“She cares only for Sirius Black. We will threaten his life. Not hers,” Lucius said. Alex narrowed her eyes. This man didn’t seem to realize that Heather already was working for You-Know-Who...unless...maybe she wasn’t. Maybe she was somehow telling the truth? If so, that meant that she, Alex, shouldn’t be standing in the Slytherin Common Room right now plotting Heather's downfall with one of her own worst enemies. She had just made a serious mistake.

A/N: Alrighty, in this chapter, we obviously get to see a bit more of Peter and Alex. I really enjoyed writing this, and sinking my teeth into the complexity of Peter Pettigrew. He obviously has a lot of problems in the futur, and his morals are a bit...scrambled, but I always thought it interesting to see exactly why, and maybe go into detail on how he's feeling, as he is one of the most interesting characters in the books. Alex, honestly, is completely different than what I had origanally planned. She was supposed to be a simple device, a friend for Heather, somebody to explain things to Heather. Much like Ron is to Harry in the beginning. But after awhile, she decided to take matters into her own hands, and took her character much farther than I had thought at first. As this sotry prgresses, she slowly turns into a character, and not just a one demensional Hogwarts friend. This chapter is the beginning of her trying to find her own emotions...or me trying to find them, because though I know where her character will be in the end, I am not sure just how she'll get there...Alright, enough rambling. REVIEW!

Chapter 13: Letters To Hogsmeade
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Chapter Thirteen~*~Letters To Hogsmeade


Heather laughed loudly as one of her knights smashed into Sirius’ king. “I win!” she squealed, jumping up off her chair. Sirius stared in disbelief.

“No fair!” he said, standing up also.

“I won! You lost!” she said sticking out her tongue.

“You sound like a three-year-old!” he said, huffily.

“Yes, but a triumphant three-year-old!” she countered, folding her arms. Sirius grinned. Heather felt her insides melt. Never before had she felt like this. So...happy. She looked at the floor, blushing profusely. Sirius noticed her blushing and grinned even wider.

“I love it when you blush,” he said softly, coming to stand before her. He fingered a strand of her dark hair between his fingers. He caressed it with his thumb, and then tucked it gently behind her ears. She smiled, and his stomach did those special flip-flops only Heather could invoke. He was filled with a delicious pain. A sweet ache that he couldn’t describe. He wanted her. He needed her. It made his day just to be by her side. A moment without her was worse than the Cruciotus curse, and as he stared at her lips, these thoughts combined into an unstoppable desire for her. He moved his face close to hers. She closed her eyes, waiting for the inevitable. Sirius pressed his mouth to hers, unable to control himself any longer. Soon they were both wrapped in a kiss so intense a bomb could have dropped beside them without their knowing.

Heather knew now that she would feel this feeling for the rest of her life. For never would she part with this man. Wrapping her arms around him in an attempt to pull him closer, she sighed in contentment. Sirius smiled through the kiss, noticing her attempt at more intimacy. He wanted so badly to give it to her, but didn’t know how good his self-control was. Would he be able to stop? He knew that he would if she wanted him too, but it would hurt so bad...

His fingers went deftly to her blouse, unbuttoning it with unnerving ease. Heather wondered briefly exactly how many girls he had done this with. She felt a moment of embarrassment at her inexperience. But that thought fled her mind as she realized Sirius had steered them to the couch and was now pulling her down onto it. She went with a smile as he ran his fingers through her long brown hair.

“You are so beautiful,” he whispered, almost to himself. She wasn’t sure how to respond, so she went with instinct.

“I love you,” she murmured, and heard him return the feeling before he moved his head to the side of her neck. She opened her eyes in surprise. Had he missed her mouth? But then all sane thought was shoved out of her mind as he began to move lower. She tensed, unsure what exactly he was planning to do.

Sirius stopped, noticing her stiffen. He closed his eyes, taking long, deep breaths. “Damn, I’m sorry,” he muttered, running his hands through his disheveled hair. She shook her head.

“Don’t apologize. I’m just not...” she stopped. “Well...I’ve never...” she stopped again, not knowing what to say. He grabbed her hand, rather tightly.

“I know. And I shouldn’t have moved so fast,” he said, shaking his head. “You’re the most precious thing in the world to me, Heather. There is no way I would risk scaring you off.” Heather moved her hands to his face. He began to button up her shirt. “We really should go. I can’t believe nobody broke in on us! Especially in the Common Room,” he said, giving an airy laugh. She nodded, rather confused. Why was he so on edge?

“Are you okay?” she asked, concerned. Had she done something wrong? He saw her face and his heart fell. She was doubting herself. He sighed in frustration. How could he tell her that being around her like this without finishing the job was...painful?

“Heather, everything is alright. I’m just going to take a quick shower before we head of to Hogsmeade for our big date!” he said, giving his eyebrows a taunting wiggle. She laughed and kissed his cheek as he bound up the staircase. Once in the boy’s dormitory, he grimaced. “A very cold shower,” he muttered to himself.

~~~


About a half-hour later Heather and Sirius, whose hair was wet and falling all in his face, were sitting in the Common Room, waiting for James and Lily. They were going to double-date, and Heather was rather nervous about the whole ordeal. Sirius noticed and put his hand on hers.

“It’s not going to be any different than if we were hanging out, as usual. There’s no need to be nervous,” he said soothingly, smiling. She grinned.

“It’s just, well I’ve never been on an actual date before,” she explained. Sirius’ eyes widened.

“Never?!” he asked in astonishment. She shook her head.

“Honestly, the guys at the orphanage were...strange and perverted. There was never any chance I would date those creeps. So...yeah...” she trailed off. Sirius was dumb-struck. He closed his eyes in pain at the thought of Heather growing up at an orphanage. She sat there nervously, expecting the usual. Whenever she explained this to people, they always said “I’m sorry,” as if it was their fault. She hated that, and it’s not as though they meant it either. She wasn’t asking for pity, and in fact hated it. To hear Sirius say it would be terrible, because she knew that if he said it, he would mean it. She braced herself.

“You won’t ever have to live there again,” he said. Heather stared, and then began laughing. She stopped when she saw his face however. He was serious.

“I’m afraid that’s pretty impossible. I don’t have a place to go after this year. I don’t have a house of my own, and I would rather go and live there than be forced to be a Death Eater by my family,” she explained, but Sirius shook his head.

“I’ll get a house, we’ll live there together. I will get a job as an Auror. I can take care of you,” he said, his eyes full of earnest. Heather stared, and felt her eyes fill with tears. Never before had anybody shown such kindness towards her.

“You are the most amazing person I have ever met...” she said, her voice broken. His face brightened.

“So you agree? You’ll live with me?” he asked. She nodded through tears, and he pulled her into a hug. It wasn’t a sexual hug, but something completely different. It was love in it’s most subtle form. Sirius’ heart thumped. He had never been so nervous in his life. He had felt as if his entire future dangled on a string, a string held by Heather Malfoy. Girl of his dreams. All she had to do was utter the word ‘no’ and he would have died on the spot. He couldn’t possibly live without her.

“Hey you two lovebirds,” somebody said right behind them. Sirius rolled his eyes. “Wow, things are really moving along,” James said sarcastically, taking note of their hug. “Next thing you know, you two will start doing scandalous things like,” he gave a horrified gasp, “holding hands!!!”

“Leave them alone, James,” Lily said, coming to stand beside him and slapping him on the shoulder.

“Yes dear,” James said, pretending to cower. Lily gave a laugh as she rolled her eyes. “Are you two ready?”

“I’d say so,” Sirius said. “You?” Heather nodded, and stood up, holding Sirius’ hand with both of hers. James eyes widened.

“OHMYGOD!!!!” he said in a high pitched, girly voice. “You’re holding hands! Wow! You’re moving so quickly in your relationship! First hugs...now this...” he said, making fun of their lack of intimacy. But Sirius and Heather decided to shut him up. They looked side-ways at each other, both thinking the same thing. Sirius gave a nod, and they came together in a fiery kiss. Most of the kiss, however, consisted of laughter.

“OKOK!!! You win,” James said, wincing away. “It’s obvious they have much to learn,” he said, kissing Lily softly on the lips.

“Yeah...” Lily murmured, obviously not realizing anything he had just said.

“Come on,” Sirius said, putting his arm around Heather and walking out the Portrait Hole.

“Oh, so now you’re giving orders?” James said huffily, following the two.

“I suppose I am,” Sirius called over his shoulder, grinning.

“Oooooh,” James said slowly. “I see who wears the pants in that relationship!” James said, winking at Sirius. “Way to be a man!” Heather raised a brow.

“Oh really?” she said, grinning. “You wear the pants in our relationship?” she said, mockingly, reaching into her robes for her wand.

“I most certainly...WHOA!” he said, freezing in mid-step. He looked down and realized he was wearing only his boxers. Lily burst out laughing. Heather did too. Sirius quickly gave a wave of his wand, restoring his pants. He pointed his wand at Heather’s skirt, readying himself for revenge.

“Don’t. You. Dare,” she said. She stood there, sincerely hoping he wouldn’t do it. James and Lily watched the internal battle between the two. Sirius was wondering just how mad at him she would be, and decided it wasn’t worth it. He pocketed his wand.

“Ouch! One point for Heather! Sirius is such a wimp!” James said, as if commentating on a Quidditch game.

“Shut up,” all three said, smiling. James grinned and bowed his head in mock hurt. Lily put her arm around him.

“Come now, let’s be nice to James,” she scolded.

“Yeah!” James said, standing up straighter.

“I mean, It’s not his fault he’s an idiot,” she finished. Every burst into gales of laughter as they walked down the halls. Soon, they were in line to be checked for signed permission to get into Hogsmeade. Heather frowned realizing something she hadn’t thought of before.

“Sirius...” she said. Sirius stopped, looking down at her.

“What’s wrong?’ he said, concerned. She looked up at him.

“I don’t have permission!” she said. Sirius frowned.

“The Malfoys never gave you a slip?” he said. She shook her head.

“Hey, it’s alright. I’ll stay here. You guys go on,” she said, trying to smile away her immense disappointment. “We can have our date some other time, Sirius,” she said lightly. She moved to walk away before her disappointment showed. Sirius grabbed her hand to stop her.

“No way! I am not going to leave you here! I’m staying with you!” he said firmly.

“What’s up?” James asked, coming up beside them.

“We’re staying here,” Sirius said.

“No, I am. Sirius is going with you,” she said firmly. Sirius shook his head stubbornly.

“I don’t want to go if you’re not going to be there! You were the only reason I wanted to go anyway,” he said. “I don’t care where it is. I just thought it would be fun to show you around Hogsmeade, since you’ve never been there,” he said honestly.

“Will you two stop bickering!” Lily said, rolling her eyes. “Of course both of you can go,” she said lowering her voice. Her cheeks grew rather hot. James smiled.

“Uh-Oh. Lily has something up her sleeve,” he said adoringly. Lily pulled out her permission slip.

“ I can’t believe I’m about to do this...Replictio,” she whispered, and suddenly her permission slip doubled. Now she held two. “Signatus,” she whispered again, making sure no teachers were watching. The signature that had once read “Violet Evans,” quickly changed to “Damien Malfoy.” Heather stared in amazement.

“Lily! You’re a life-saver!” Heather announced, hugging her. Lily blushed red as James grinned proudly.

“She’s a regular Ne’er-Do-Well!” James said clapping her on the shoulder.

“Where did you learn all that stuff?” Sirius asked.

“Class,” Lily said dubiously. Sirius stared at her as if she was crazy.

“You actually learn things in class?!” he said incredulously.

“Yes...I listen!” she said haughtily. Sirius noticed that Heather’s cheeks were red with excitement. Honestly, he had really wanted to show Heather Hogsmeade. He knew she had never seen it, and knew she would love it.

They managed to fool the old Care-Taker easily, slipping passed with downcast faces as he checked them off on a list. Before they knew it, they were in Hogsmeade, looking at all of the different shops. First, of course, Sirius had to show Heather Zonko’s. Surprisingly, she seemed to like it just as much as James and Sirius, where as Lily stood in the corner and rolled her eyes. Next they all decided they would visit the Three Broomsticks for a drink.

“Have you had Butter-Beer?” Sirius asked as the waitress brought them four flagons. Heather nodded.

“A few times. It’s wonderful!” she said. James nodded.

“Here, here!” and he took a large swig. Lily sat up very straight, sipping it lightly. Sirius, like James, inhaled his. Lily and Heather shared an exasperated look.

“What? Don’t like the way we drink?” Sirius said jokingly.

“It’s barbaric,” Lily said.

“Well at least we won’t die of dehydration,” James said, imitating Lily and sipping little bits at a time. He stuck his pinky out and the set the cup on the table. He reached for an imaginary napkin and dabbed at his lips daintily. Sirius burst out laughing. Lily tried to frown, but failed and began laughing too.

“You’re just jealous,” Heather said, smiling.

“Oh darn, she caught on!” Sirius said in mock disappointment. Heather smiled brightly, holding onto his hand. But her attention was caught by a blue-gray owl flying towards them. Sirius turned in his seat to see what she was looking at. He saw the owl too. There were whispers from the students as it landed on the table before them. James stared.

“I didn’t know the owls could deliver letters to the students in Hogsmeade,” he said in astonishment. Everybody looked at Lily, but she shrugged, unable to explain for once.

“Who is it for?” Heather asked, taking the letter that had been tied to the owl’s leg. She read the address:

Sirius Black
Hogsmeade, England
The Three Broom Sticks
Fourth Table on the Left


“I think it’s to you, mate,” James said.

“Thanks James, I don’t think I could have figured that out on my own,” Sirius said sarcastically.

“Who’s it from?” Lily said, curious. Sirius looked at Heather sadly.

“It’s from my parents...”


A/N: Alrighty, I've started putting chapter pics in my chapters now. I've got one for the next chapter all ready, and there are some at the beginning of the story if you want to check them out. All creds on them go to Gnome123! Now...I've decided to try something, to see if people actually read the Author's notes. If you're reading this, put the word "Flamingo" in your review!!

Chapter 14: When 'No' Is Not An Answer
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Chapter Fourteen~*~When 'No' Is Not An Answer


Heather noticed all of the people staring at them, waiting to see what Sirius’ response to the letter was.

“Sirius,” Heather said softly, laying a hand on his arm. “Do you want to go outside?”

“Uh...what? Yeah...thanks,” he said softly. She grabbed his hand and led him outside. They quickly found a secluded bench and sat down. Sirius ripped open the letter.

“Do you want me to leave?” she asked uncertainly, her brown hair blowing in the cold wind. He shook his head vigorously, pulling her down beside him and wrapping her in his jacket.

“Please just....” he stopped, swallowing. “Stay with me.” She nodded, feeling her heart break for him. She knew exactly what he was going through. Sirius quickly read over the letter, his face growing paler and paler.

“Sirius...are you alright?” she asked worriedly seeing his complexion. He thrust the letter into her hands, closing his eyes in fury. She looked at the jagged, old fashioned handwriting and read:

Sirius,
Your brother is dead. The incident happened a few weeks ago, though we were unable to contact you through our grief, as you can imagine. I am glad to say he suffered only the Avada Kedavra, meaning he felt no pain. Also, I am quite proud to inform you that your brother died a hero’s death. He was a Death Eater. He will always stand out in our hearts as a
real son. He knows his place. I hope this death sways you from your life of cowardice, though it will get you nowhere in our family. I’m afraid that it is too late for repenting. Your place in our life, our household, and our family is no longer filled with your presence. It is the necessary decision of your father and I that you be disowned. You may find residence of your own over Christmas, and we have enclosed some money that will help pay for premises.
Helen Black


Heather had tears running down her face when she finished. As she looked up, she saw Sirius pull five galleons out of the envelope. She scowled in disgust. So much for the money for premises. Her heart sank. How could she possibly help him? She wanted so bad to show him that everything would be alright. She sat there, not knowing what to do. Wiping tears away from her face, she looked up at him shaking her head in rage.

“What a horrid woman,” she whispered, trembling with emotion. Sirius’ face was a hard stone.

“They didn’t even have the damned decency to tell me! HE DIED A FEW WEEKS AGO AND THEY DIDN’T EVEN WRITE ME!!!” Sirius yelled, standing up. He kicked the side of the bench. “DAMNIT!” he screamed. Heather saw that he was crying. “I hated that bastard!” he said, collapsing finally on the bench. Heather highly doubted that, but didn’t say anything. She didn’t know what to do. She put her arms around him, trying to take some of his pain. She hugged him tightly. Sirius put his face in his hands, letting the unwanted tears wet his fingers.

“Shhh...” Heather soothed, guiding his head to her shoulder. He put his arms around her, letting her support his weight. No mean feat, mind you. “It’s alright...” she said, closing her eyes in pain. “Sirius, he died proudly, just like your parents said...” she said in attempt to ease the sting. Sirius shot up immediately, bumping his head roughly on her chin. He didn’t seem to care however, as he grabbed her shoulders roughly.

“You don’t understand! My brother was a Death Eater!” Sirius yelled in her face. Heather winced.

“I’m sure he only did it to make his family proud Sirius. He was looking for acceptance. You can understand that...” she started again.

“I don’t need acceptance. He was a dirty, back-stabbing, idiot!” Sirius roared, shaking her. Heather knew exactly what he was doing, she had done it with her father, and she wouldn’t allow it.

“Sirius, do not turn your brother into a bad guy to help you deal with the pain!” she yelled back at him “It’s selfish. Sure, he joined the Death Eaters, but I think there is more to it than that. I think he wasn’t like you. He wasn’t as good at blocking his parents out. He couldn’t deal with the stress. If he didn’t have a heart, then why would he try and please his parents? If he didn’t care, Sirius, he would have done what he wanted. You turned away from him then,” she said, almost as if she had lived his life and not him. Sirius looked at her ferociously, but didn’t argue. She nodded, knowing she was right.

“You’re sorry you treated him like a Death Eater and not a brother. I can see it in your face. Don’t make the mistakes I did. My father was a Death Eater. I hated him after his death. And did until just recently. Don’t do that to you or your brother’s memory. It’s wrong to both of you. Regulus was a good man, but with a weak heart, and you know that,” she whispered. Sirius looked away in shame.

“I treated him like the worst kind of enemy,” he choked out. “Right up to his death...”

“No...Sirius. I’m sure he knew that you didn’t mean it. I’m sure of it. He knew, Sirius. He knew because you’re brothers. Family members know those things. You can’t live with a person your whole life and not be able to see into their real emotions,” Heather explained softly. “He knew it, Sirius. You must realize that.” Sirius stared at her in amazement. Never before had he met a girl like Heather. She had just explained his entire life out as if he was a tragic book she was reading. Nobody could do that. Nobody could see the true Sirius Black...except Heather.

“You are the most amazing girl I have ever met,” he whispered softly. She smiled sadly.

“I’m trying to repay you for what you have done for me,” she said, holding his hand.

“And what might that be?” he asked.

“You’ve showed me what it’s like to love somebody,” she said.

“I don’t know what I would do without you...”

“Oh, wonderful. The two Muggle-Lovers are at it again,” a sly voice said right beside them. They both jumped, and Heather looked up to see her worst nightmare. Lucius Malfoy. Her throat clogged in fear. Sirius noticed the terror in Heather’s eyes and stood up quickly, ready for a fight. Heather stood up slowly beside him, cautiously. Sirius grabbed her hand to comfort her, and felt that it was icy cold. His hatred for Lucius was multiplied by hundreds to see that he intimidated Heather so badly.

“Go to Hell,” Heather said roughly.

“Tell me, Black, is she as good a kisser as Snape says she is?” Lucius said icily. There was a moment of dead silence as the memory of Snape came back to both Heather and Sirius. Heather clenched her jaw, but Sirius snapped completely. He let out a dog-like roar and slammed his fist into Lucius’ face. Heather stared in shock.

“You will pay for that you-“ but Sirius was cut off by a well aimed blow to the jaw. He retaliated in anger by punching Lucius in the stomach. Lucius doubled over. Heather saw in his eyes that he was done fighting fair. She saw a glint in his eyes that she definitely didn’t like.

“Expelliarmus!” she yelled, and Lucius flew back into the air. He landed on his backside, wincing. He threw a curse at Heather and grabbed his wand before hurrying away. Heather turned immediately to Sirius. “Are you alright?” she asked frantically.

“I won’t be if he doesn’t LEAVE YOU ALONE!” he said, yelling the last words after Lucius. She stared nervously away, seeing the deadly look he gave Sirius. “He didn’t touch you did he?” he asked. She shook her head, and he gave an audible sigh of relief. He put his arms around her softly but she suddenly felt a sharp pain on the palm of her hand.

“Ouch!” she said in surprise.

“He did hurt you didn’t he!” he said, in outrage. Heather saw her hand and her heart fell to the ground. Sliced into it was a message that she read quickly:

Binns’s room. Midnight. Alone. Or Black pays.

As soon as she read it, her hand healed. Sirius examined her hand while she looked around. She saw Lucius leaning against a far-away tree, watching her. He gave her a meaningful nod, before turning away. Heather shivered. What did he want from her now?

“I don’t see anything. What happened?” Sirius said, concerned, still looking at her hand.

“It’s nothing. Just a muscle cramp,” she said coldly. She looked around, and noticed something very odd. “Is that...is that Peter and Alex?!” she said in surprise. Sirius looked over Heather’s head to see as well. He couldn’t believe his eyes. Peter and Alex were sitting outside an ice-cream shop, talking and joking together. Heather looked away from them quickly, remembering the vision she had had of Alex’s parents.

“What’s wrong?” Sirius asked, noticing the change in Heather. She sat back down on the bench.

“I never told you, but I had another vision,” Heather admitted. “It was about Alex’s parents...”

“What happened?” Sirius said softly, realizing that whatever had happened was obviously troubling her a great deal.

“I...saw them die,” she said, looking down. “Alex thinks I told Voldemort about them being Aurors, and their plans and stuff,” she said. Sirius stared in shock.

“What did she do?” he asked, anger in his voice.

“She yelled at me,” Heather said shortly. Sirius gave a her look that told her he knew she wasn’t telling him everything. “And she slapped me across the face,” Heather admitted softly. Sirius bristled protectively, but then seemed to realize something.

“Wait...was that the day you were out on the lake? Is that why you were out there in the first place?” he asked, putting the puzzle pieces together. She nodded. Sirius pulled her into a tender, comforting kiss. “I think we’ve had enough for one day, don’t you? Ready to head back?” he said, and together they walked back to Hogwarts.

~~

“Do you think they are done reading that letter?! It’s been like, forever!” James said in frustration.

“James, don’t be so insensitive! It was from his parents, it might have been upsetting!” Lily said calmly.

“Then we should be out there comforting him!”

“Heather is with him, and trust me, he would much rather Heather comfort him than you,” Lily said.

“And what is that supposed to mean?!” James said indignantly.

“It means that she is his girlfriend, not you!” she said exasperated.

“Oh...yeah...” James said. He tapped his foot impatiently. “Alright, long enough. He can mourn all he wants, but I’m going out there,” James said and stood up. Lily stood in front of him.

“James, please...” she said, rolling her eyes.

“I’m worried about him Lils. You don’t know his family. They’re terrible! I just want to make sure they haven’t done anything really foul,” and he tried to walk around her. She blocked his way again.

“But James, if he is really upset, he might not want another guy to see him. What if he’s crying?” Lily said, almost as an afterthought. James gave a laugh and tried to pass her again.

“Sirius Black doesn’t cry! Just the thought is ridiculous!” and he tried once again to move around her. “Lily! Will you please move!” he said.

“No way,” she said, giving a slight smile.

“Don’t make me move you,” he said grinning also.

“James, don’t you dare,” she said. He moved towards her.

“Move...”

“No!”

“One...” he said tauntingly.

“James...”

“Two...”

“JAMES POTTER!”

“Three!” James said, and he swept her off her feet, into his arms.

“Put me down!” she whispered in embarrassment as people stared and sniggered.

“I warned you...” James said, opening the door and walking out with Lily in his arms. He quickly scanned the street. “I can’t believe it! They ditched us!” he said indignantly. He gave a large huff, causing Lily to grimace in fear of being dropped. James caught this look and smiled. “Scared?”

“Not really,” she said, leaning her head on his shoulder.

“Good, because I would never drop you,” he said, kissing the top of her head.

~~

Heather and Sirius spent the rest of the day talking and walking around the school grounds. Heather found that she was often extremely preoccupied, and she kept looking anxiously at her watch. What did Lucius want from her? After awhile, it began to get chilly. Sirius noticed before Heather did that she was shivering, and decided that they needed to go inside. She scoffed at his protectiveness.

“Am I not capable of telling when I’m cold enough to go outside?” she asked indignantly.

“Of course not, you’re just a woman,” he said. Heather stopped, glaring in anger. Then she saw his mouth twitch, before he burst into laughter. She realized he had been joking.

“I thought you were serious!” she said, shaking her head.

“I am Sirius!” he said.

“Haha,” Heather said sarcastically. “I’ll bet that joke just gets funnier and funnier.”

“Yep,” he said proudly, as they walked into the Great Hall.

The rest of the evening passed quickly. James and Lily returned. Remus did as well, though he hadn’t told them where he had been. He later explained to Lily, Heather, and the Marauders he had been taking his Werewolf Potion, to get over the effects of the last one. Heather shook her head in sorrow. Why was it that such a great guy was forced to have this life? Before long, Heather was saying goodnight to all of her friends.

“Aren’t you going to bed?” Sirius asked, staying behind with her.

“Of course. Goodnight!” she said a little too enthusiastically. How she wanted to tell Sirius about her meeting with Lucius. She knew he would readily go with her. But she didn’t want to risk his safety. She went up a few of the steps, and waited until she heard Sirius was all the way up. Then she slowly sneaked back down, and out the portrait hole.

The walk to Binns’s empty classroom was extremely stressful, and her nerves were on edge by the time she reached the door. She pushed it open, and saw Lucius standing alone in the corner.

“Evening,” he said.

“Morning,” she corrected venomously. Lucius grinned.

“Indeed,” he said, walking forward. He went to close the door behind her with a loud click. “You’re brave, to come alone,” he commented.

“What do you want?” Heather snapped.

“Oh, right to the point then? Very well. It is actually quite simple. I want you to stay away from Black.”

“No,” Heather said simply, and began to leave. Immediately the door-handle turned into the head of a cobra. It hissed at her, showing it’s long fangs. She glared at him.

“I’m afraid no isn’t an option. You will not associate with him,” he said firmly.

“You can’t make me,” she said coldly.

“Ahhh...” he said softly. “That is where you are wrong, my dear.”

“The Imperius Curse doesn’t work on me,” she warned. He grinned.

“No...no, that’s not my intentions at all. This will be your doing. You see, if I see so much as a friendly word between you two... I will kill Black.” There was an eternity of silence.

“You’re lying,” she whispered.

“All it takes is a little bit of poison in his pumpkin juice...a quick curse while he is alone in the hallways. Nobody would know. And nobody would believe your word against the rest of the Malfoy family. You can save him, but you must leave him,” Lucius said.

“I...” Heather began hotly.

“Tell nobody of this meeting, and decide quickly. It’s your choice...” he said, before tapping the snake’s head and walking out the door that opened for him.


Chapter 15: The Pain of Deception
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Chapter Fifteen~*~The Pain Of Deception



Heather stared, her breath coming in sharp, stabbing pains. Break up with Sirius? No...It wasn’t a possibility. She couldn’t survive without him! She needed him as he needed her. She survived on her love for him, and vice versa. She slid down to the ground. How could she possibly do this? But then...she could never let Lucius hurt him. There was no other way...she took a deep breath. She couldn’t simply tell him to leave her alone. She knew he would never do that. He would never give up on her if he thought there was the tiniest chance she may take him back. She had to think of another way. She had to make him stop loving her. But what would possibly do that? She knew he would never stop loving her, but maybe she could hurt him long enough to find a way out of this. She searched for something, her heart breaking.

She covered her face with her hands, stifling sobs as they escaped her lips. Hurting Sirius would undoubtably be the hardest thing she would ever have to do. She came up with an idea. It was a horrid idea. One that she would most likely regret for the rest of her life. She stood up resolutely. She would not let Sirius die. He would live, and he would be happy after awhile. She walked out the open door, clenching her teeth together. Walking quickly back to the Gryffindor Common Room, she mulled her plan over. She would need Remus’ help. Walking softly up the stairs to the boys dormitory, she scanned the room. Sirius was sound asleep, and without a doubt the most handsome man she had ever seen. She couldn’t help the tears that streamed down her face. How could she possibly do this?

She walked silently past James, who was sleeping with his head laying at the wrong end of the bed, and then Peter who was snoring loudly, his feet sticking out of the edge of the covers. She passed Frank Longbottom, a boy she had only known from a distance because Alice kept pointing him out so often. Finally she reached Remus’ bed. She sat on the edge, her throat unable to work properly. She shook his shoulder, waking him up. He woke up immediately, his odd, yellow-brown eyes looking up at her curiously.

“Heather...?” he asked.

“Shh!” Heather insisted. He saw that she was crying and his eyes filled with worry.

“Are you alright?” he asked immediately, whispering softly.

“I need your help,” Heather said, trying to compose herself. “You’ve been a good friend, and I need your help,” she said.

“What is it?” he asked, sitting up and checking if the others were awake.

“I’m going to ask you to help me break up with Sirius. And I don’t want you to ask questions. I don’t want him to know that I talked to you about this before-hand. Alright?”

“Heather...” Remus said astonished.

“Remus, I have kept your secret for you. I know you have a Marauder’s pact or whatever about secrets, and never betray each other, but if you value his life, you will do exactly as I say.” It was the terror and pain in her voice that made Remus promise. He knew that something was definitely wrong, but he also knew that Heather loved Sirius, and would never do anything to put him in danger. He had no doubt in his mind that her breaking up with him was not her choice.

“I’ll do this for you, but I honestly don’t see why you...”

“And you probably never will,” she interrupted. Wiping away tears, she gave him a hug. “Thank you,” she whispered, before getting up and motioning him to follow her. She made sure they were in ear-shot of Sirius. “Play along, but act like you are trying to help Sirius.” Remus pursed his lips, but nodded all the same.

“Remus, please. I just want something other than...well...Sirius! He is too high-maintenance,” she said much louder.

“Heather, I’m not going to go with you. Sirius is my friend,” Remus said. Heather heard Sirius’ breathing pause, and knew that he was awake. She gave Remus a last, agonized look and continued.

“Remus! Come on, it’s only Sirius. I mean, come on. He isn’t that great of a guy. And now he doesn’t even get the money from his parents. So he is poor. Can you believe he wants me to live with him?” she said, her voice cracking. To some, it might sound like laughter, but to Heather and Remus, who could see her face in the dark, it was immense pain.

“Heather, I don’t know what you’re talking about. Go to bed,” Remus said.

“REMUS! Don’t you understand?! I don’t want Sirius!” Heather said loudly, waking up everybody in the room. Sirius, who had already been awake, leapt out of bed.

“Heather, what are you on about? Are you drunk?” he asked. Heather looked at him.

“Oh, Sirius! You’re awake!” she said, pretending to be surprised.

“Yeah, I am!” he said, flipping on the light switch. Heather winced in the bright light. “And what are you saying?”

“I’m saying that I’m sick of you, Sirius,” Heather said, her heart breaking. She forced the next words out of her mouth. “I don’t love you.” She felt as though a part of her just died. She grabbed the wall for support, breathing deeply, and blinking rapidly to keep from crying.

“What are you talking about?” Sirius whispered in pain.

“Just what I said,” Heather responded, unable to say it again.

“You...don’t love me?” he asked, his face showing a sadness she had only seen when Regulus had died. She nodded.

“I don’t,” she whispered. “I was only playing you. But there are better guys around here. I thought maybe Remus might be up to the job, but he is too good a friend to you. Damned Marauders,” she said angrily. Sirius glared, his eyes watering.

“Don’t insult my friends like that...my REAL friends!” he roared in fury.

“You really are pathetic. Pouring your heart out to me on that bench,” she said, feeling as though she would pass out. She could tell she had struck a chord. Sirius’ entire being shook with hurt.

“Get out of here. I can’t believe I actually loved you. You back-stabbing Malfoy bitch!” he yelled. Remus stared at Heather, knowing full well that she was about to break down. He didn’t know what was going on, but he could tell that Heather was going insane with heart-ache. He decided he had better get Heather out of there before she broke down. She opened her mouth to respond to him, but found that she couldn’t breath.

“I think I’d better go outside and have a talk with her,” Remus said viciously, feigning disgust. Sirius didn’t say anything as Remus led her out of the room. He only stared, his eyes glazed over.

“Did that really just happen...?” he asked, collapsing on the floor in a melancholy pile.

“I think so...” James said in amazement. He had really liked that girl. He looked at Sirius’ face and was shocked. He had never seen him this upset in the seven years he had known him, especially over a girl. “Sirius...”

“Shut up,” Sirius said coldly, standing up.

“I’m sure she...” James began again.

“SHUT THE HELL UP! YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT, SO KEEP YOUR MOUTH CLOSED!!!” Sirius roared, shoving James roughly against the wall. He wanted him to fight back, he wanted to fight. It didn’t matter that it was his best friend in the world. James stared at him seriously, however.

“Punch me,” James said. Not threateningly, but as if they were having tea and conversing lightly. Sirius let go of him roughly, and James nodded.

“Sorry...” Sirius said.

“It’s alright, come on. Let’s get some sleep,” James said, with no real conviction. He knew Sirius would probably be unable to sleep for months now. He hadn’t known much about their relationship, but he knew enough to know it was love. Or, now, he supposed, it had been one-sided. Heather must have been an amazing actress. But somehow, he wasn’t sure she was being entirely honest throughout that whole ordeal. He could see waves of pain crossing her face with each word spoken. He guided Sirius back to bed, and then got in his own four-poster, sighing, and unsure what to think.

~~

Heather sobbed uncontrollably against Remus’s shoulder. Remus didn’t know what to do, never having been in this situation before.

“Heather, you can tell me. Why did you do that? Is somebody making you?” he asked. Heather pulled away from him, looking up into his concerned face.

“Thanks Remus. Don’t tell him,” and with that she took off down the steps. Guilt boiled in his stomach. What had he just done? He had just assisted in his two best friend’s break-up!

~~

Peter stayed sitting up in bed, smiling happily. He wanted very much to tell Alex about the night’s events. He couldn’t wait to see the look on her face. She would be so happy. He laid back down, that happy thought comforting him. Keeping him from hearing the muffled anguish of his fellow Marauder, Sirius Black.

A/N: Aw, this chapter was very sad to write! Did you think it was sad? What do you think will happen? Will they get back togehter? If so, how? Or is their realtionship doomed? Let me know in a review! My last chapter only got 2 reviews...=(

Chapter 16: Hopeless
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Chapter Sixteen~*~Hopeless


The next day dawned for broken hearts in Gryffindor Tower. Sirius Black was hardly conscious, and instead went on auto-pilot. He ate little breakfast, little lunch, and no dinner. Afterwards, he went to the Common Room and did homework. Luckily, he didn’t really have to think about it, so he managed alright. After that, at around eight or nine ‘o’ clock, he would go to bed, not to sleep, but to wonder on what he did wrong. Was he that horrible a person that Heather would try to cheat on him with his friend? Was she that desperate to get away from him? Then he would roll unceremoniously into a lethargy big enough to engulf all of Hogwarts.

This routine seemed to fit only one other individual, and it wouldn’t be hard to guess who. Heather Malfoy followed this schedule with strict obedience. Not once did she eat a full meal. Not once did she sleep more than an hour at a time. When called upon in class to answer the question of ‘who defeated the great giant Dungolo?’ she would simply answer, ‘yes.’

To most this odd behavior was an effect without any outward cause, but the select few knew of how Heather tried to cheat on Sirius. Daily Heather was tripped up or cursed at by the groups of vicious girl that followed Sirius like a pack of starving dogs. She didn’t mind that very much. In fact, she didn’t mind anything much at all. Not even the smug looks from her cousin, Lucius.

A few weeks of this schedule, and the once glowing couple became dementor-like singles. Heather had nobody to talk to. Even Lily was giving her the cold shoulder after that fateful night. She guessed that James had told her everything. She was alone in the castle of Hogwarts, yet there were hundreds of students surrounding her constantly.

“Sirius, pass me the Sneezwart,” James said. His request went ignored. “Sirius!” he tried again. “OY! PADFOOT!” James yelled, elbowing him in the side. Sirius handed him the Sneezwart. “Sirius, look. I know she broke your heart, but your killing yourself! You look like something Peter dragged in from outside.”

“James,” Sirius said shortly, getting annoyed, as he had often. “How would you feel if Lily had done that to you?” James opened his mouth, and then closed it, realizing that he would be just as upset as Sirius.

“Sorry, mate. I just hate to see you suffer like this,” James said. “Maybe you should talk to her.”

“I’ve tried. She avoids me like the plague.”

“She looks like the plague too! Have you seen her lately? She isn’t happy about this either mate, it doesn’t take a centaur to see that one,” James said, trying to lighten the mood. Sirius nodded.

“I did the best I could, James. And it still wasn’t enough,” he said, looking down at his potion. James slapped him on the back.

“We’ll get her back for you. We have to find out what is going on though. This isn’t natural. Remus is acting weird too. Have you noticed?” James asked. Sirius nodded.

“Yeah, I have. I think he just feels bad because it was him Heather wanted over me...” Sirius said sadly.

“Yeah...maybe...” James said, thinking.

~~

Peter hobbled quickly up to Alex, who was on her way to dinner. “Alex! Hey Alex!” Peter said. Alex looked up, her face rather white. She looked slightly relieved to see Peter.

“Hey, Peter,” she said. Peter took her books. “Look, I’ve been thinking,” she said.

“What’s up?” he said, grinning at her.

“Have you noticed how...well...upset Heather has been lately?” she said.

“Yeah! Isn’t it awesome?!” Peter said excitedly. His face fell when Alex shrugged. “You don’t like it?” he said.

“It’s just...I’ve been thinking. Lucius doesn’t seem to think Heather is in touch with You-Know-Who... and she is friends with Lily Evans...who is a Muggle-Born,” Alex explained.

“So...” Peter said, confused.

“Well, I’ve just been thinking...what if Heather was telling the truth? What if she had nothing to do with my parents death?” Alex said. “I mean...I’ve been trying to remember, and I never told her my parents were Aurors.” Peter nodded.

“What do you want me to do?” Peter said eagerly. Alex smiled, realizing that Peter was willing to do anything she asked.

“You really are sweet, you know that?” she said. Peter blushed, and she thought he would pass out.

“Hey, cool it,” she said, laughing. “I’m just thinking. This is killing both Sirius and Heather. And I don’t think Heather did anything wrong. We need to find a way to help them.”

“But...if Lucius finds out...” he said nervously, forgetting the fact that he wanted revenge on Heather Malfoy. All that mattered now, oddly, was making Alex happy.

“He won’t. Come on. We have to fix this.”

“Alright,” Peter said softly, following in her wake.

~~

Heather looked around the silent hallway, holding her school bag to her chest. It amazed her how her life could turn completely upside down in one night. And now, for weeks, she has been suffering the consequences. Her love for Sirius went deeper than she had thought.

She was so wrapped up in her thoughts, she didn’t even see Severus Snape coming down the corridor. She thought for a moment that she should be scared, and then realized something. Why should she care? She was just going to become a Death Eater anyway. There was no way she could stop Lucius on her own. She needed help, she needed support, she needed Sirius.

“Bring back memories?” Snape sneered, remembering their time in the hallway many months ago.

“Ones I’d rather not bring back, yes,” Heather said rather bored. Snape noticed her tone.

“What’s the matter? Your little Mud-Friends all abandoned you?”

“Yeah, pretty much. Except that they have every right to, and they aren’t my Mud-Friends,” Heather said, trying to walk around him. He put his arms around her, pulling her back against his front. He grabbed her books and wrenched them from her hands. The bag dropped to the ground, and Heather sighed dismally.

“Why so tense?” he asked.

“Just leave me alone,” she said earnestly, in a very tired voice. He spun her around roughly, forcing her to face him. He kissed her on the mouth and then looked for a reaction eagerly. He saw none. He unbuttoned the top button of her shirt, the whole time looking at her face. That’s when Heather realized something. He only did it to get the reaction! He only wanted to see her respond. “You really are disgusting,” she said, right before bringing her knee up between his legs as hard as she could. Snape let out a moan and dropped to the ground.

“You...” he said, wincing. Heather picked up her bag and books and walked back towards the Great Hall.

Once in the Great Hall, she realized that she would almost rather be back in the hallway with Snape. The Great Hall was full of people. People she didn’t want to be seen by. People like the Marauders and Lily. She went to find a seat by herself, but Remus came up to her.

“Are you alright?” he asked, seeing her disheveled look. He saw that the top button of her blouse was undone.

“Yeah, whatever,” she said, sitting down. Remus sat down beside her. He frowned.

“We need to talk,” he said firmly, as she buttoned her shirt back up.

“Fine, talk then,” she said, looking at the currently unappetizing food around her.

“This has gone on long enough. I want you to stop this,” he said.

“It must go on until he forgets about me,” Heather said firmly. “Pass the pumpkin juice.”

“No, Heather!”

“Why not? Too heavy?”

“I’m not talking about food,” Remus said, getting frustrated. He grabbed her shoulders, his eyes meeting hers. As soon as that happened, he felt as if he was looking at death. Heather’s normally bright blue eyes seemed to have dulled in their color. “Merlin, what have you done to yourself? You are torturing Sirius and yourself. I don’t know why, but it can’t be worth it.”

“It is,” she said firmly, moving out of his grasp. “I have some homework due tomorrow. I’ll see you later,” she said and got up. Remus watched her leaving quickly. He put his head in his hands.

“Tomorrow’s Saturday...” he said sadly.

A/N: Yeah, this chapter was kind of pointless, but it was a chapter necessary to the character's development and emotions. The next one, is a nice long one, I think you guys will like it a lot. It's back to my usual chapter length, which is normally around 7 pages long on word. The next one is called Candy, which is one of my favorites, where we get introduced to a new character of mine!! Okay, leave me lots of lovely reviews, and I'll post quickly!!!!!! YAY!!!!!

Chapter 17: Candy
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Chapter Seventeen~*~Candy



Sirius watched as Heather made her way out of the Great Hall. He got the distinct feeling that she was trying to escape. He had watched her little chat with Remus, and didn’t know what to think of it. Remus seemed to be asking her for something, but Heather had obviously refused. He gave a long sigh. Remus, standing up at last, made his way back over to them. Sirius couldn’t help the resent that curled inside him. Remus obviously knew something he didn’t. He had often caught Remus looking at him with guilt in his eyes. Was there more to Heather’s relationship with Moony than he knew?

“Hey Moony!” James said jovially. Sirius watched closely as Remus forced a smile.

“Boy am I starved. Sorry I’m late,” he said, sitting down opposite them, next to Lily.

“What were you doing?” Lily asked, taking a sip of pumpkin juice.

“Just putting my books away,” Remus said cooly. Sirius felt as if he had been punched in the stomach. Obviously, he didn’t want them to know of his meeting with Heather. This was definitely not sounding good.

“You were...putting your books away?” Sirius asked calmly. Everybody grew silent. Shock rang throughout the friends. Sirius was actually talking now?

“Well, well. Finally, Sirius is back! We thought maybe you had lost the ability to talk!” James said cautiously.

“You were putting books away? Did you say?” Sirius repeated, ignoring James and focusing all of his attention on Remus. Remus gave a shifty nod.

“That’s what I said,” he said, trying to act normal. There was another long, uncomfortable silence, in which Sirius stared knowingly at Remus, who was squirming beneath Sirius’ piercing gaze. “Well,” he said, getting up, “I have some homework to finish up. See you.” And with that Remus scurried away.

“Tomorrow’s Saturday,” James, Lily, and Sirius said together. Lily and James looked cautiously at Sirius, who was bristling. Without a word, he got up and left, his heart pounding in his ears.

~~~

Remus hurried along the hallway, his brain boiling. What was he doing? He had to tell Sirius. But he couldn’t betray Heather! His decisions were torn in half, and he didn’t know what was the right thing to do. It completely frazzled him. He was Remus Lupin! Cool, calm, smart, and always knew just what to do. He never had any doubt as to what the right thing was, and he always thought things out first.

He was so caught up in his thoughts that he didn’t even realize where he was going. Seconds later he smashed right into something. He nearly fell over. Looking around him, he saw Sirius standing before him. His eyes were full of fire, and he looked murderous. Remus closed his eyes. He really didn’t need this right now.

“What’s going on between you and Heather?” Sirius growled.

“Nothing,” Remus said firmly, walking past him. Sirius grabbed his arm roughly.

“Tell me!” he roared.

“I did!” Remus roared back, jerking his arm free. This seemed to enfuriate Sirius. He grabbed Remus by the throat and slammed him against the wall as hard as he could. Remus shoved him off onto the ground with surprising strength. Sirius came pack for more, trying to punch him in the face. Remus ducked, and Sirius’ fist slammed into the stone wall. Pain erupted throughout his hand, as his knuckles busted open. This made him even more furious.

“You knew I loved her!’ Sirius yelled, grabbing Remus' shoulders and throwing him on the ground. “You knew and you did it anyway!” He tried to kick Remus, but Remus simply grabbed his foot, and Sirius tripped.

“You know that’s not true, Sirius,” Remus said calmly, standing up. Sirius stood up too, and tried half-heartedly to punch him again. Remus grabbed his arm. “How many times have I tried to hook up with a girl, Sirius. It never works out, and you know it. I’m a Werewolf. If I even tried to kiss them too close to full moon, the consequences...” he stopped, his heart wrenching. He would never have a proper relationship, and he knew it. So did Sirius. Sirius sank to the floor, a pathetic heap.

“Why did she do this?” he sobbed. “How did I wrong her?” he said again, his head in his hands, shaking in pain. Remus sat down too, thinking. If only Heather would tell him why she was doing this, he could make a better decision.... He shook his head. He couldn’t betray her. But no longer would he let Sirius suffer. He would get the information out of Heather. She had to tell him! He couldn’t stand being in the middle like this.

“Sirius, it’s alright. Everything will be alright,” Remus said softly.

“How would you know?” Sirius snapped, his head shooting up. “You’ve never loved anybody! You can’t! You’re just a Werewolf! You’ll never love anybody, and nobody will ever love you! How can you possibly say everything will be alright when you could never even dream of feeling the way I do about her!” There was a dead silence. Sirius realized what he had just said. Remus’ face hardened, and Sirius knew then and there he had said something terrible. Remus didn’t get angry or hurt at much, but Sirius knew that what he had just said had hit a rare nerve. Sirius half expected Remus to punch him, in fact, he would have preferred it to this stony faced silence. Remus nodded.

“You’re right,” he said coldly, standing up.

“Remus...” Sirius began, but Remus was already walking away. Sirius slammed his fist into the stone in fury again. How could he be so heartless? Just because he was in terrible pain, didn’t mean he had to be nasty to Remus. Standing up, he thought of a place he could think. A place where none of the other Marauders would go. He nodded. The Library.

~~~

Alex leaned against the wall. What was she doing? She had no idea. Should she tell Sirius? Or would that endanger Heather more? And then, should she even trust Heather? What about her parents? Maybe Voldemort just found him on his own.... She closed her eyes in frustration.

“Are you alright?” Peter asked softly, watching her troubled face. She smiled.

“Yeah...well no. Peter, I’m so confused. I don’t know what to think...” she started. Peter grabbed her hand, encouraging her to continue. “That night...when...”

“When your parents died...” Peter assisted. She nodded.

“Seconds before the letter arrived...Heather came out of the bathroom, looking sick. Really sick, like maybe she had just thrown up. She said...she said she knew that Voldemort had found my parents and that we needed to find them and help them....” Peter stared, unsure what to think.

“What are you saying? You think she can tell the future?”

“I don’t know. At first, I was so upset, I thought maybe she had told Voldemort about my parents, because she is a Malfoy and everything. But now that just doesn’t make sense. Why would she hate Lucius so much? And then, when we asked Lucius for help, he seemed insistent on getting her to join Voldemort. That suggests that...she isn’t a Death Eater,” Alex finished. Peter stared in confusion.

“Heather can tell the future?!” Peter said.

“Well...it’s possible. Maybe she is a seer, or something,” Alex said unsure. “You see? I’m not sure what to do.” Peter nodded, understanding. His first impulse was to run and tell Lucius that Heather could see the future. But then, immediately, he chastised himself. Alex would definitely not like it if he did that. Alex was all that mattered.

“I think...we should talk to Remus. He obviously knows something. Didn’t you see him at dinner? He was talking with her. Let’s see what he thinks. Remus always knows what to do,” Peter said smiling. He knew that whatever problem they had, Remus would most likely know what to do. He always did.

“You’re right, Peter. Thanks. I really don’t know what I would do without a friend like you around...” she said. Peter looked nervously at her, wanting very much to kiss her. He shied away from the idea almost immediately though. He had never kissed a girl before. He didn’t want to scare her away. If all he could do was be her friend...so be it. As all these thoughts went through his mind, however, he didn’t notice Alex getting closer, and closer. Soon, she was right in front of him. And before he knew it, she had place a kiss on his lips. He responded immediately, but was unsure what to do. Alex seemed to know though, so he let her lead, copying her movements.

Alex broke away, a shy smile curving her face. “That was your first kiss wasn’t it?” she said. Peter blushed, nodding. “Amazing. All the idiots I normally kiss are all way too experienced, and full of themselves. You’re different. I like that.”

“Thanks... you too...” Peter said stupidly. Alex laughed, and then grabbed his hand.

“Let’s go find Remus.”

~~~

Remus walked around outside, for a long time, trying to calm himself down. His breath came in short gasps, and his heart felt like it had just gone through a blender. What was bothering him wasn’t what Sirius had said, but the fact that it was completely true. He would never know true love. It was impossible. He was a Werewolf. He sat down beside the lake, watching as the Giant Squid made it’s graceful way along the edges of the water. Crisp air rustled his sand-colored hair. He looked slowly at the stars that seemed to rain their shame down upon him. He leaned back as he wondered the thing he had wondered since the day he had received the Werewolf bite. Since he was nine years old. He remembered the day clearly. It had been late at night, just outside The Flagon, a Wizards bar near London. His father, as usual, stopped in for a ‘quick’ drink with his buddies before returning home. And, as was inevitable, Remus sat outside on the curb, listening to drunken roars of laughter.

At first he had heard a faint rustling noise, but it soon turned into a loud growl as a full-grown Werewolf burst through the bushes. Remus had tried to run into the safety of the bar, but he didn’t make it. As the horrid memory washed over him, he pulled up his pant-leg, and saw the jagged scar on his calf. He wiped his eyes viciously, that a bite could ruin his entire life so effectively.

“That’s a hefty bite you’ve got there...” a cheery voice said from right behind him. Remus practically leapt out of his skin. He jumped into the air, whirling around, his heart beating painfully fast and his eyes twice their usual size. He turned to see a girl, about his age, standing before him as if by accident. He vaguely remembered seeing her around the school. He examined her more closely now. She was a Gryffindor, but he didn’t recognize her from his year. She was perhaps a year younger. She had short blonde hair with rather shocking streaks of dark blue. The blue went nicely with her light grey eyes. She was of average height, and petite. She had rather swollen lips that seemed to curve up naturally, giving her a permanently pleased look.

“I don’t want to be rude but...who the hell are you?!” Remus said, still breathing deeply. She smiled, reaching out her hand.

“Please to meet you. I’m Candy Florrence!” she said, shaking his hand vigorously. Remus gave a snort, and then realized she was serious.

“Your name...is Candy?” he asked incredulously. “For real?”

“Well... my full name is Candicia, but all of my friends call me Candy!” she said.

“So I’m your friend now?” Remus asked, amused.

“Of course! Unless you don’t want to be friends, in which case I’m sorry I ever bugged you. What’s your name? And where did you get that cut?” she said all in one breath.

“I’m Remus Lupin,” he said ignoring her second question. “I’ve only seen you around a few times. What year are you in?” he asked.

“Sixth,” she provided, sitting down on the ground and pulling him with her. He stared in shock. This was a very bizarre girl.

“I’m in seventh,” Remus said.

“Yes, I know. You were Prefect,” she said informatively.

“Yes...” Remus said. “Why are you out here?” he asked.

“Well, It’s actually quite a long story. You see, I was with my friend Elizabeth, and we were going to play some chess before bed, but then she decided to ditch me, and hang out with this guy, Colin. He’s a real jerk, trust me. Anyway, other people don’t really like to hang out with me very much. Elizabeth is my only friend. I kind of stretched the truth about my ‘friends’ calling me Candy. Only my family and Elizabeth, and other people that aren’t my friends. I’m sorry about that, but I was kind of shocked when I saw your scar and I figured that you needed somebody to talk to and you wouldn’t want to talk to me unless you thought I had friends.” Remus stared, completely speechless. This was the oddest encounter he had ever had.

“Why don’t you have any friends?” he said, rather indignantly.

“Well...people think that I am weird. I do what I want, when I want to do it! I died my hair blue, I sometimes save my homework until the last minute, I speak my mind, If I think that somebody is being rude, I say so. Also, if somebody is lying I point it out. I never tell people’s secrets, so I’m not much for gossip, which seems to be all the girls in my year think about! My worse flaw, it seems is that I’m honest. Painfully so. Oh...yeah and they think I talk to much,” she finished proudly. Remus gave a laugh.

“No...why would they think you talk to much?” he said sarcastically. She searched his face for a second, and then realized he was joking. She gave a laugh.

“Oh, you’re funny! And subtle about it as well! I’ve met people that are funny, but...you know, like too obvious about it? Like they will say something that could be funny, but then they say as if it was really funny, and it kind of loses it’s humor, because it’s so obvious, and you don’t have to search for it and...”

“I’m glad you liked it!” Remus said, exasperated, yet still smiling. Oddly, he felt a lot better, and his problems seemed far away. “But you never finished how you got out here,” he pointed out.

“Oh yes! Sorry. Okay, so my friend ditched me, and nobody else wanted to do anything, so I thought I would walk around for a bit. That’s when I saw you. You were walking outside, and seemed very upset, so I followed you, to see if maybe I could help!” she said brightly.

“It’s really not safe to just follow somebody outside onto the grounds,” Remus said, wondering why he was worrying about this girl’s safety in the first place. “I mean, I could have been coming out here to meet with Voldemort or something.”

“No, I saw your face, and you’re definitely not a Death Eater, you don’t look capable of doing something bad,” she said rather softly.

“But still...you should be careful...” he said, frowning, yet feeling oddly happy. This girl had wanted to see if he was alright? It scared him. He shouldn’t feel happy, it just wasn’t right. He didn’t deserve happiness he was a...

“You’re a Werewolf, aren’t you?” she asked as though asking to borrow a quill or something. Remus stared.

“Wh-what?!” he asked, nervously.

“I asked if you were a Werewolf. You are,” she concluded.

“No...I’m not,” Remus said firmly.

“It’s alright. You don’t have to be ashamed of it. I know loads of Werewolves! My uncle is one,” she said.

“Really?” Remus asked, rather excitedly.

“Yeah, really. And don’t worry, I won’t tell anybody about it if you don’t want. But my uncle doesn’t care. He says that he’s proud of it. He has learned all kinds of self-control that normal humans don’t need to know, and he says that he has this feeling that normal humans don’t get. It’s like...”

“A connection to animals,” Remus finished for her. Then he nearly slapped his forehead, this girl was already weaseling stuff out of him! What was wrong?!

“Exactly!” she said excitedly. “Wow, I’m really glad I met you tonight,” she said, standing up, and before Remus could say anything, she dashed away.

He shook his head, that was the weirdest encounter he had ever had! But all the same, he couldn’t help but mutter, “I’m glad we met too...”

Chapter 18: The Consequences Of Our Actions
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Chapter Eighteen~*~The Consequences Of Our Actions



Peter saw Remus coming inside from the grounds, and pulled Alex along.

“There he is!” he said excitedly. “REMUS!” Peter yelled. Remus looked up, smiling.

“Hey Peter, Alex. What’s up?” he asked jovially.

“What’s wrong with you?” Alex said, seeing his happy expression. “Are you drunk?” Remus gave a laugh.

“No, of course not. What’s the matter with you two?”

“It’s about Heather and Sirius,” Peter said firmly. Remus’ face became serious once again. Peter was relieved. He didn’t like seeing Remus smile, it was so unnatural. Remus wasn’t supposed to smile, or be happy. Remus was calm. Remus was smart. But Remus wasn’t happy.

“We can’t let this continue. We have to do something,” Alex said. Remus nodded.

“I know. I tried to talk to her about it at dinner, I don’t know why she wants to break up with him!” he said frustrated. The other two were silent, shuffling their feet guiltily. “What?” Remus asked, frowning.

“Well...it was my fault...” Peter began.

“No...it was mine. I talked him into it,” Alex said.

“But it was my idea,” Peter said.

“I don’t care who did it! Just tell me what ‘it’ is!” Remus said angrily.

“Well, we wanted them to break up,” Peter said.

“But now we don’t,”Alex hurried to explain. Remus didn’t know what to say. This was their doing?!

“You guys did this!?” Remus roared. They both winced.

“We asked Lucius to make her do it, because we...” Alex began, but she trailed off in desperation. Remus’ eyes narrowed dangerously. Peter had never seen him this angry.

“What have you done...” Remus said softly. “These past weeks of torture, and neither of you said anything!!??”

“I thought she killed my parents!” Alex said, very upset. Peter put his arms around her. Remus stared, first at Alex’s words, and then at Peter’s actions. Peter and Alex? Together?

“And I just wanted to help Alex,” Peter said, completely forgetting his plans at changing Sirius and Heather. They could be Blood-Traitors all the wanted. Alex liked muggles, and she was still the most beautiful and wonderful thing that could bless his life.

“So you wanted revenge?” Remus asked Alex, trying to understand. Alex nodded, ashamed. “And what did Lucius do...” he said, hating Lucius even more.

“He threatened to kill Sirius if Heather so much as smiled at him ever again. He told her to break up with him, and that she would become a Death Eater, or Sirius would die,” Peter said. Remus nearly fell over.

“And you did this?” Remus asked Peter in a furiously calm voice. “A Marauder did this?”

“Yes...” Peter said softly. Remus did the first thing that came to mind. He grabbed Peter, and punched him. Peter slammed to the floor in shock. Alex let out a terrified squeal, and dropped to Peter’s aid.

“You two disgust me...” Remus said before walking away towards the one place he knew Sirius would hide. Peter stared after him in disbelief. Remus was certainly not himself...and he didn’t like it...

~~~

Heather sat in front of the fire, clutching a pillow. She watched as the flames grew and fell softly. They were as a group of swaying people, their yellow bodies whipping about, screaming their agony. Heather shivered. She wished she could lose herself in the flame. How long would she have to endure this? When would she finally get over the hurt of losing him? She already knew the answer to that...never.

The Portrait Hole gave a soft moan as somebody entered the Common Room. Heather turned in her seat to see Lily.

“Hey,” Heather said, attempting conversation.

“Hello,” Lily said coldly, sitting down at a different couch and pulling out a piece of parchment. She then pulled out a quill, and began writing.

“What are you doing?” Heather said, craving any sort of friendly conversation. Anything to take her mind off of Sirius.

“Writing,” Lily said without looking up.

“Homework?”

“No.”

“Letter?”

“Yes,” Lily said, rather irritated. Heather noticed her tone of voice, and gave up on trying to talk. She closed her eyes in pain and sat back, clutching the pillow even tighter.

“Alright then,” she whispered softly. The two sat in silence for a very long time, and it was awhile before Heather realized that Lily had stopped writing. She was looking very sad and confused. After a few minutes, she slammed her quill down on the paper, turning furiously to Heather.

“Why did you do that!?” she asked, tears in her eyes. Heather didn’t need to ask what she was talking about.

“We weren’t good for each other,” Heather said, looking anywhere but Lily’s confused face. Lily’s eyes fogged over.

“Heather...I can tell something is wrong...” Lily began, pleadingly. Heather could tell she missed their friendship as much as Heather did.

“I forgot something in the Great Hall,” Heather said quickly.

“Heather! Please, just tell me!” Lily said, standing up.

“See you,” Heather said over her shoulder, as the Portrait Hole closed.

“That was rather rude of you,” the Fat Lady said reprovingly.

“Thanks, but when I need lessons in manners, I’ll ask next time,” Heather snapped.

“Oh...looks like somebody’s in a mood!” the Fat Lady sniffed. Heather bit her tongue and walked away. She clutched her fists together, her shoulders tense and her breathing choppy.

“Heather!” a new voice carried after her. Her bones chilled as that voice crawled up her spine. She kept walking. “Heather, stop right now!” he sounded furious. She couldn’t handle this anymore. She couldn’t face him.... Strong arms stopped her escape.

“Let me go,” she said firmly.

“You’re coming with me, we need to talk!” Sirius roared in anger. Heather rolled her eyes and pulled away.

“I’ve said all I need to say.”

“I haven’t,” he said, dragging her with him.

“Let me go!” Heather yelled at him, trying desperately to get away. She reached for her wand but Sirius wrested it from her with unnerving ease. “Sirius...please.... If you don’t leave me alone, I’m going to call for a teacher!” Sirius decided to stop that plan by placing his free hand over her mouth. Heather closed her eyes in heart-ache. He dragged her into one of the empty classrooms, and shut the door.

“Alright...” Sirius began.

“No, Sirius. Nothing you can say will make me come back to you,” she said, backing up against the wall. Sirius advanced, however, and she realized that she was trapped. She waited with baited breath for his next move. What would he do? She wasn’t sure, but all the guesses in the world could not have prepared her for what he did next.

A/N: Well, this was definately a difficult chapter for me to write. For one, I needed to write Remus out of character, which was a little odd. Then, I had to write Alex out of character! Both were a little wacko, because of the things happening in the story. Remus met Candy...therefore he is unusually happy. Alex is feeling guilty, therefore she is unusually nice! Oh well, hopefully my struggle didn't showthrough in my writings! So, now that I left you that wonderful cliffie...what will Sirius do!?! DUNDUNDUUUUUUUUN!

Chapter 19: Dream A Little Dream
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Chapter Nineteen~*~Dream A Little Dream



Sirius smiled. His face split into the first, honest, true smile in weeks as he looked down at Heather. His heart soared with relief.

“Sirius…” Heather started, but stopped as she noticed his smile. Her eyes widened in confusion. Had he gone mad? He clasped her hands in his, and then pulled her into a tender hug. Heather stood there, embraced lovingly, her arms flapping at her sides in horror. She shoved away from him. He looked at her with laughter in his eyes. “What is wrong with you?!” she roared in frustration.

“Nothing at all… except that I’m going to pound Lucius’ face in with a sledgehammer…” Sirius said. Heather froze in the act of putting her hands on her hips. She stared in horror. He knew…

“How…who…” she stuttered, feeling the floor would crack and pull her down into the depths of Hell.

“Remus,” Sirius whispered, watching her face closely. She closed her eyes, and covered her face with her hands.

“I’m going to throttle him,” she muttered under her breath. “Sirius, it was a lie he told you. It’s not true. I don’t want to be with you anymore,” she tried to tell him, but he was shaking his head stubbornly.

“Heather, you can’t deny it. I can’t live without you, and you without me. I love…” he began, his usual, sloppy smile in place. He looked like a large puppy who had just been given the most wonderful treat.

“Sirius no!” she shouted angrily. “If Remus actually did tell you, then you know we can’t be together! He will kill you!” she said frantically.

“Let him try,” Sirius said, shrugging.

“No…” Heather said. “You will not do this to me. I will not risk your life. I will not let your coffin rest on my shoulders. I love you, yes. I’ll openly admit it. But we cannot…”

“Heather, will you just slow down for two seconds?” Sirius said, putting a hand on her shoulder. “You are not the only person in this relationship. It’s not fair that you get to help me, but I'm not allowed to help you," he said. She looked up at him, at a loss for words.

“How could you possibly help me? Without getting yourself killed?” she whispered desolately. He grinned.

“Who says that Lucius needs to know of our relationship?” Sirius said playfully. “I don’t see why you didn’t just tell me in the first place,” he said.

“I figured that you would try and get revenge on Lucius or something. I didn’t want to risk you being hurt,” she admitted.

“Ah,” he said, sounding like Dumbledore, “but here is where we come to the fact that you don’t have to fight for me, Heather. I’m not a weak little Nancy-Boy like you seem to think I am. I’m perfectly capable of taking care of myself,” he said with an arrogant raising of his eyebrows.

“Yes…well, I also think that your brain doesn’t work right all the time,” Heather said, the sides of her mouth twitching. “So what do you propose we do about this?” she asked.

“I propose…” he said, grinning, “that we give Lucius everything he wants to hear,” he said. Heather gave a rather sly smile.

“I hate you, you disgusting, arrogant slime-ball,” she said, grabbing the tie from his crisp white school shirt and dragging him closer.

“And I despise you, you cheating, lying, Malfoy snob,” he said, his lips inches from hers. For seconds they hung there, their breathing sharp and eager. For weeks they had been denied this pleasure. Their eyes searched each other’s, as if meeting for the first time, but when their lips clashed together, it became apparent that these two had definitely met before…


~~

Running as fast as he could, he thrust his small hands forward. He wouldn’t let it catch him. He couldn’t. His blood rushed in his ears, and he could barely see. It was as if he was sweating droplets of dark, black liquor, and they kept falling into his eyes, blurring his vision and making it nearly impossible to dodge the constant onslaught of tree branches that swung of their own accord at his small frame. He shook his head, trying to see. His legs were as heavy as logs. Looking down, he saw the cause. He saw smoke curling up his stubby legs, like long, terrifying cold hands, trying to keep him from escaping.

“Stop it! I need to get home! I need to be free! I need to escape!” he yelled frantically to the hands, kicking them off just before they got a tight hold. He stopped, however, as a slow, soft voice carried to him through the dark, mysterious forest. His breath came in sharply, cutting his throat. He didn’t care though, all his senses were focused on the sweet melody coming from somewhere beyond his range of vision.

“Soft the drowsy hours are creeping,

Hill and dale in slumber sleeping

I my loved ones' watch am keeping,

All through the night…”


Tears filled the little boys eyes. The smoky hands and shadows shied away from the beautiful sound. He was able to see again, and he walked forward. The song began to grow louder, and he began to run in his anticipation.

“I’m coming! Keep singing!” he yelled, smiling through tears. He slowed to a halt as his destination came into view. In the middle of a clearing in the haunting forest sat a pale woman, in the middle of the dark, swaying blue flowers that covered the forest floor. She picked one, and spun it between her fingers as she continued to hum and sing. “I’m here…” the boy panted. “Mother…” he said, smiling and walking forward tentatively. The woman stopped singing at once and looked up. She was gaunt and looked much older than her actual age. She held out the flower in her frail, shaking, skeletal hand.

“Come, Remus. It’s alright,” she said warmly, her voice seeming to surround the clearing, yet without so much as an echo. Remus walked forward, looking concerned.

“You aren’t looking well, mommy,” he said, taking the flower from her hand and examining it.

“Nonsense! I’m fine,” she scoffed, forcing a rather painful looking smile onto her pasty face. Remus looked at her sadly. “Why do you do that? You silly thing,” she said, tapping him on the nose.

“Do what?”

“You’re so serious!” she said, tickling him and making an exaggerated grumpy face. Remus laughed.

“I just wish…I wish that daddy didn’t…” he said, tucking his head beneath her chin as he sat in her lap. His mother closed her eyes.

“Oh, Remus. You know your father doesn’t mean it. He can’t help it! He loves us both. Don’t you forget that!” she said with enthusiasm. Tears rolled down her face.

“Mommy?”

“Yes, honey?” she said, setting a crown of flowers on his sandy-brown head.

“Is this real?” His mother chuckled at this, but then set him beside her. She clasped his hand.

“I’m afraid not,” she whispered.

“Is it a dream?” he said.

“Yes,” she whispered, “but sometimes dreams can impact one’s life more than the actual real-world occurrences.”


“Yeah…” Remus said. “What else do you think will happen in my dream?” he asked, standing up and looking around.

“Who knows! Anything!” his mother said, happily, standing up with him.

“You don’t think that…” Remus stopped, looking at the waxy, thin-haired old woman that was his mother. “You don’t think…
he will be in my dream… do you?” he finished in a whisper. His mother’s eyes filled with a sudden fear, and they both pricked their ears. Loud crunching noises approached them, and Remus’ heart fell among the flowers at his feet. His father…


“VANESSA!” a cold, slurring voice roared, coming to stand at the edge of the clearing, a bottle of fire-whiskey in his shaking hands. As soon as he spotted them, the flowers on the ground turned to black ash. Vanessa moved from Remus’ side to stand in front of him protectively.

“Mommy!” Remus said urgently, his chubby little hand snatching at hers to try and stop her.

“Not now, sweetie,” she said firmly. “I’m right here, Jack, there is no need to shout,” she said quietly, folding her hands in front of her.

“THERE IS A DAMN GOOD REASON TO SHOUT!” he roared back, swaggering toward her.

“I don’t think so…”

“I DO!!” he roared. Then he spotted Remus, and froze in fury. “What have you two been up to then? Plotting against me? You and the little snot been having a good talk behind my back?” he said, grabbing Vanessa’s shoulders roughly. She looked calmly into his face, not replying. “ANSWER ME WOMAN!” he roared, hitting her hard across the face.

“Stop it!” Remus yelled, leaping forward. His father threw him aside.

“Jack! Don’t you hurt him! Don’t touch him!!! You don’t know what you’re…” but her words were cut off as Jack became so incensed that he slammed the bottle of alcohol across her head. She dropped to the ground, instantly. Nobody in the clearing moved.

“Mom…?” Remus whispered. “Mommy?” he yelled, he dropped to her side as blood gushed from her head. He turned his emblazoned eyes on his shocked father. “LOOK WHAT YOU’VE DONE! FIX HER! GET YOUR WAND!” he yelled, yanking his father with all his might toward his mother. His father just stood there, in a drunken shock as he looked at his wife. Remus sobbed in anguish as he knew that his mother was dead. A low snarl echoed among the trees, but it was a second before either of the two realized what it was. Remus turned in trepidation to see a great, ugly, scraggily looking Werewolf running toward him.

“D-dad, give me your wand!” Remus yelled, backing up. But the smoky hands were crawling up his calves again. The trees were closing in on him, and his mother was gone. “NO!” he yelled, and looked back to see his father was drinking heartily with all of his friends. He was back on the street, waiting for his father to finish up.... He didn’t know what to do. He just watched as the great dog thundered toward him. He did the only thing he could. He turned his head heaven-ward and screamed. Not just any scream, but one of a pained anguish, a scream that could wrench the heart of Lord Voldemort himself. People in Hell wept over the sad tone, pitying, mourning, cherishing, and loving his agony.


“Remus?!” Remus leapt from his sleep, falling swiftly onto cold stone. “Remus are you alright?!” a voice said frantically.

“No! Get away!” Remus said as nervous hands came to help him from the ground. He shoved the person off of him, and he looked around and saw that he had fallen asleep in the library. He allowed himself to be placed in a chair.

“You scared me to death! What happened? Were you having a bad dream?” Remus looked into dark grey eyes. He swallowed hard as he saw who it was. Candy.

“Yeah…” Remus said, not sure what he was answering. His heartbeat was going a hundred miles an hour. He had had dreams of his past before, but never as weird and twisted as that. Never before had he seen his mother for so long before she met her gruesome death, with him unable to help her.

“You’re crying, poor thing,” Candy whispered, frowning severely. Remus looked at her oddly. Trying to recall what he was doing, and where he was, and who he was.

“I’m not crying,” he said, a little too gruffly.

“Then what is this?” she asked with a smile, wiping a tear from his cheek with one of her fingers.

“Get off me!” he yelled furiously, slapping her hand away. She looked stunned. He felt terrible. What was he doing? This was about as far from being himself as he had ever been. He half expected her to start crying or pout or something. Instead she glared at him.

“That was very rude. Apologize,” she said, folding her arms across her chest. Remus was so surprised by her actions that he actually laughed. She took it the wrong way, and her frown became terrifying.

“Sorry,” he mumbled quickly. Her frown turned into a beautiful smile at once.

“No sweat,” she said, waving her hand in the air. “Now, what were you dreaming about?” she asked.

“I’d rather not talk about it…” he said uncomfortably.

“I know,” she said, shrugging. There was a long silence. “Well?” she prompted.

“Well what?”


“Well tell me your dream,” she said laying her hands on her slender hips.

“But I said I didn’t want to talk about it,” he pointed out.

“So?”

“So end of discussion.”

“You need to talk about it,” she prodded.

“Look, I have things in my past…”

“That are troublesome. You still have dreams about them,” she said.

“Yes, and you couldn’t possibly--“

“My sister died three years ago,” she said coldly. Remus froze. He couldn’t believe the difference in her face. She wasn’t happy and bubbly as usual, but her eyes turned cold and dark with hurt. He looked down at the table. “I know about pain. Just because I’m able to deal with it, doesn’t mean I don’t understand. I still have the dreams, and it always helps when I write them in a diary or talk to somebody about it. I just need to get it out of my head, so I can think about other stuff,” she said matter-of-factly. Remus nodded.

“I’m sorry…it’s just…” he began.

“Don’t apologize, you haven’t done anything wrong. Look, you don’t ,i.have,/i. to tell me, I just think it would help if you gave it a try,” she said. Then she turned rather red. “I didn’t like to see you in so much pain…”


“Candy…” he began, but she broke him off with a quick kiss on the cheek. His eyes widened in shock.

“I’ll see you around, Remus. Most likely sooner than you want to,” she said with a laugh. Remus stared after her as she hurried off. Luckily, she wasn’t able to see the way he was blushing to the roots. She had kissed him!

~~

“You know what, that’s it. I’ve had enough of your arrogance,” Heather snapped loudly.

“Yeah, well you could definitely work on the social skills yourself,” Sirius said in an exasperated voice as they walked into the Great Hall.

“Oh, and what is that supposed to mean?” Heather said, fury etched onto her face. Sirius rolled his eyes.

“'Hi, I’m Heather! I cheat on my boyfriends, but don’t worry, I’m not at all like my surname!'” Sirius mimicked in a high pitched, girly voice. Heather gave a loud gasp of anger.

“Well at least I don’t walk around as if I own the place, dragging an idiot group of the only people stupid enough to call you their friend. Then, when you’re bored with those stupid friends, you lead around every idiot girl in Hogwarts!” Heather yelled. They both seemed oblivious to the audience they were attracting.

“You seem to forget that for a while there, you fell into that group of girls,” Sirius snapped.

“Yes, the girls you so heroically decided to bed as many times as possible and then throw away like dishrags. But don’t worry, it’s okay! Because you never said ‘I love you!’” Heather roared.

“Why am I talking to you?!” Sirius yelled.

“How should I know? You’re a Black. As Black as your name!” Heather yelled.

“Get a life,” Sirius screamed.

“Go to Hell!” Heather retorted, and they hurried off through different exits. As soon as Heather was out of the Great Hall, she ran as fast as she could to the Common Room. She passed many awed students on her way. Her heart was pounding. As soon as she reached the Portrait Hole, she gave the password and stumbled in. She saw Sirius immediately, standing, waiting for her. She ran into his arms, and he pulled her against him. They both burst out laughing.

“Did you see their faces?” Heather asked through a kiss.

“I don’t think they suspected a thing,” Sirius assured. “God, I can’t even begin to tell you how good it is to have you in my arms again.”

“Trust me, I understand completely. No need to explain,” she said, laying her head against his shoulder. They stayed that way for a few seconds.

“I can’t wait until next week,” Sirius murmured. Heather looked up at him.

“Why’s that?”

“Because, it’s the holidays. Everybody will be going home…including Lucius,” Sirius said. “We’ll have the Common Room all to ourselves, almost." Heather grinned mischievously.

“And the dorms…” she said. Sirius grinned at her immediate thoughts. She blushed a deep crimson, however. “Not that I was thinking…I just meant…”

“I know,” he comforted. “You only want the dorms free so that we can play Gobstones…and stuff,” he whispered against her ear.

“Yeah…Gobstones,” she giggled. A loud noise made them both jump. The Portrait Hole swung open and in came Lily and James, followed by Remus.

“Oh!” Lily said in surprise as she saw Sirius and Heather together. They grinned.

“I suppose you two have made up in the last three minutes?” James asked in shock, remembering their horrible fight in the Great Hall. Remus cleared his throat, and explained the predicament. James shook his head, as did Lily, who burst into tears.

“Oh, I’m so sorry about earlier tonight. I was so nasty,” she said, and the two girls hugged each other. James and Sirius looked awkwardly at each other.

“Er...you don’t mind if I don’t hug you, right Padfoot?” James joked, a relieved grin on his face.

“I’ll try to keep from crying,” Sirius said, rolling his eyes, yet smiling all the same.

“James! This is perfect! Now we can tell them all!” Lily squealed in excitement, grabbing his hands enthusiastically.
“What is it?” Sirius and Heather asked. Remus looked curiously at them.

“Well…” James said slowly. “We’re getting married. Right after the school year.” There was at first a stunned silence, and then a loud uproar of cheering and applause.

“Lily! James! I’m so excited!” Heather said, hugging them both tightly. Sirius clapped James on the back and gave Lily a hug. Remus beamed at them, congratulating them profusely. They all laughed and joked late into the night. The whole time neither couple could keep their hands off each other. After about three in the morning, however, Heather gave a long yawn, and Sirius suggested they went to bed. They all went upstairs, hearts light and giddiness keeping smiles plastered on their faces.

Remus watched as they all went up the steps. “I’ll be up in a minute,” he called, running his hand through his hair. He gave a sigh, smiling and shaking his head. He was so happy for them , but a tiny part of him died as he watched the happy couples walking up the steps, and knowing that he would never have that. As he thought this, a little book on the table caught his attention. He walked to it, and saw that it was a diary. It had the picture of a full moon on it, filled with stars that actually twinkled. He saw a little note tied to it and read it with a smile:

I hope this helps,

Candy


A/N: I really liked this chapter. I thought it had a nice mix of happy and sad. Happy obviously for Heather and Sirius, and sad for poor Remus. But I had a lot of fun trying to hash out what Remus' past could be. Hope you liked it. Thanks as always for your reveiws=)

Chapter 20: Quidditch Lessons
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Chapter Twenty~*~Quidditch Lessons


Heather woke up feeling extremely happy and refreshed. She gave a sigh as she sat up. Saturday. Finally! Running her hands through her long, chestnut hair, she rubbed the sleep from her eyes. She looked around the silent room and saw Lily smiling broadly in her sleep. It had been two weeks since Lily and James had announced their plans of marriage. Her hand hung over the edge of the bed, and a delicate ring made from fairy-gold coveted her finger. Heather felt a twinge of jealousy, but quickly squashed the feeling. What nonsense! Set daintily on the band was a dark green gem, sparkling merrily, as inside it was water from a magical spring somewhere in Ireland. James said that it had amazing healing powers, and that if ever Lily was hurt, the water inside the ring would speed up the healing process, as long as she had the ring on her finger. Heather found this quite interesting, having never heard of such a spring, or having water inside the stone of your engagement ring.

Stretching the knots from her shoulders, her eyes flitted to the empty bed that had belonged to Sara, who was now at home with her family, for Christmas. Hogwarts was a very empty place, what with Christmas break, but Heather preferred it this way. There was no Lucius to constantly hound her steps, watching her every move. Of course, she had been offered the chance to spend Christmas with the Malfoys, but when Lucius asked her with no real conviction, she answered quite frankly that she would rather spend Christmas with a hoard of raging Hippogriffs.

Thinking about all of this brought her gaze to Alex. Alex had become a completely different person, and so had Peter. Peter no longer seemed to hate Heather, though he didn’t seem to like her either. She simply didn’t exist to him, which was fine with her, but rather odd. It was obvious that he was smitten with Alex, but Sirius was saying that Peter was acting extremely unnatural, and the couple seemed to be getting more and more distant with Heather and the Marauders. Alex had tried a few times to get back to normal with Heather, as if nothing had ever happened, but the truth was that things were just too awkward, so the two gave their friendship up for good.

Heather nearly leapt out of her skin in shock to see Alice staring at her. She had decided to stay at Hogwarts because Frank was staying. The truth was, Heather hadn’t seen very much of Alice at all, she and Frank spent all their free time together, and they somehow managed to pretty much ignore everybody else during class. Heather gave a soft smile, unsure what to say, it was as if they were strangers.

“Hey...” Heather said, grabbing a brush from her night stand and starting to run it through the thick mass of curls that hung down her back.

“Hi,” Alice said quietly. “Ummm...”

“Sleep good?” Heather asked, wincing as a few hairs parted company with her head.

“Yeah...well...actually...” Alice blushed, and looked at Lily and Alex uncomfortably.

“What’s up?” Heather asked, seeing the odd look on her face, and frowning.

“Well...do you reckon those two are actually asleep?” Alice asked, looking nervously at them. Heather glanced at the two slumbering girls and shrugged. They looked sound enough.

“Yeah, I’d say so. Is there something you don’t want them to know?” Heather asked, rather concerned. “Is everything okay? Nothing’s wrong?”

“Oh, no. Nothing’s wrong. Everything is perfect,” Alice said, grinning slyly. She didn’t say anymore, but stared shyly at the ground. Heather waited patiently, but after about two minutes of silence, Heather’s curiosity got in the way.

“So...you want to tell me what it is? Maybe I can help?” she said. Alice gave a giggle.

‘I don’t think I’ll need you to help me. You see, I’m getting married,” she whispered excitedly, happiness sparkling in her clear blue eyes. Heather didn’t seem to hear correctly. After a few seconds though, she realized what her friend was saying.

“You too!?” she asked, incredulously.

“You’re WHAT?!” Lily yelled excitedly, leaping out of her covers. Alex also sat up. Apparently, the two had been awake the whole time. Alice stared in shock.

“You were awake?” she said, looking gloomily at Lily. Heather’s eyes were wide.

“You didn’t expect us to miss out on something like that, did you?” Alex asked, grinning.

“When did it happen?” Heather asked, gleefully. Alice’s grin was back in place, along with a deep blush.

“About a two weeks ago...” she said.

“A week ago?!” Lily asked incredulously. “A WEEK?” she gasped.

“Oh, I knew you would be mad...” Alice said anxiously. Lily frowned. Obviously she had mis-understood.

“Alice...I’m not mad at you!” she said with a slight laugh. “I said that because I can’t believe you didn’t tell us earlier!”

“Oh...” Alice said, looking relieved.

“Why didn’t you?” Heather asked, her smile bright.

“I was afraid Lily would be angry because...well I didn’t want you to think I was trying to copy off of you or trying to steal your glory or something,” Alice said very quickly. The three other girls stared in shock, and then burst out laughing.

“That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard!” Lily said, shaking her head exasperated. “How could you ever think I would be mad at you for something like that?!” she said, and grabbed Alice in a big hug. Alice smiled happily.

“Well?” Alex said expectantly.

“Well what?” Alice said.

“Let’s see the ring!” they all started laughing and Alice put her hand out. The ring was beautiful. It had two vines that twisted tightly together to make the slight, silver band. From the vines, on the top, a bright blue flower rested magnificently. Inside the flower, if you looked close enough, you could see clouds swirling around inside the blue. It looked exactly like the sky.

“It’s a mood ring,” Alice explained. “See, it’s all blue sky’s right now, but once, when I was very distraught, the flower got very gray and cloudy, and I could have sworn I say a streak of lightening.

“That’s brilliant!” Heather said, her eyes wide with amazement. Alice blushed, looking fondly at the ring.

“Hey, what’s all the ruckus?” a cool male voice said from the corner. Heather grinned as she saw Sirius leaning against the doorframe. Standing next to him was James, looking excited and wide awake. Sirius grinned sloppily, taking in Heather’s half-brushed hair and muggle shorts and tee-shirt.

“Hey gorgeous,” he said, coming to sit down beside her.

“Don’t say things like that!” Heather said playfully.

“What do you mean? I was talking to Lily,” he said, feigning confusion. Everybody started laughing, except James.

“Hey, watch it, Padfoot, or I might just have to get possessive,” he said jokingly, sitting down on Lily’s bed and putting an arm around her. Sirius laughed.

“How did you guys get up here?” Heather asked, looking at Sirius who leaned back against her pillow. She leaned back against him.

“Levitated,” he said casually. She laughed. “So...what do you guys feel like doing today?” Alice looked away hurriedly.

“What’s the matter, Alice?” Alex asked.

“I can’t do anything with you guys today...” she said.

“Why not?” Heather asked.

“Well, I was going to teach Frank how to feed a Four-Leaf Grovetule today,” she said. They all stared at her.

“A what?” Sirius said.

“A Four-Leaf Grovetule, you know, those really adorable little plants that we learned about in Herbology last week?”

“Oh, I’ll bet that’s what you two are going to do...” James said, wiggling his eyebrows. Lily hit him on the shoulder.

“Just because everything means sex to you, doesn’t mean it does to everybody else. You’re just a pervert,” she said simply. James grinned.

“And proud of it,” he said, squeezing Lily tightly.

“Yeah...so...moving on....” Sirius said loudly. Heather giggled.

“So about what we’re going to do today,” she said encouragingly. “We could just hang out and listen to music. I have a CD of the Blood Bats!”

“You like the Blood Bats?” Sirius asked. Heather nodded.

“You?” she asked. Sirius shrugged.

“Their alright. I like the Viva Ruin,” he said.

“Yeah...their okay,” Heather said, smiling. Sirius grinned too.

“As fun as that sounds...it doesn’t,” James said.

“Yeah, listening to music doesn’t sound all that great to me either,” Lily admitted.

“How about Quidditch!” James said enthusiastically.

“Only one problem, Sherlock,” Lily said. James gave her a quizzical look. “You and Sirius are the only one’s here who know how to play! What are Alex, Heather and I supposed to do? Sit and watch?” she said pointedly.

“Oh, that sounds fun,” Alex said sarcastically. Heather grinned.

“Hey, how about we teach you guys!” Sirius said, looking down at Heather. Her heart filled with dread...she was terrified of heights.

“I know how to fly! I’m probably a far sight better than you guys,” Alex said indignantly. “And besides, Quidditch isn’t really my thing.”

“So you don’t want to come?” Heather asked. Alex shrugged.

“No offense, but I have better things to do,” she said haughtily.

“Like Peter,” Sirius said rather snippily. The room got deadly quiet. It was true that Sirius had been rather testy with Alex and Peter. They had started all the problems in the first place, yet they hadn’t said anything. Remus, he could easily forgive, seeing why he didn’t say anything. Remus didn’t have all the information, but as soon as he did, he told Sirius straight away. Oddly, Remus had seemed to be extremely happy lately. Sirius hadn’t known why until just a few days ago, when he had seen Remus eyeing a girl he had only seen in passing. He was informed that her name was Candy, and apparently, she and Remus had a little ‘thing’ going on. Sirius wasn’t sure what kind of ‘thing’ but he encouraged it whole-heartedly.

“I’ll see you guys around,” Alex said, before glaring at Sirius and then leaving.

“That was very stupid,” James said. Sirius didn’t care though. He looked down, trying to see what Heather was thinking. He could tell that she was torn, not knowing what to think. Lily shrugged, siding with Sirius.

“I think maybe we should let up on Peter and Alex. They didn’t know what they...” Heather began, trying to defend them half-heartedly.

“I think we should let up on Peter, but it was Alex that enforced it. All because she thought you killed her parents,” Sirius said.

“But Peter...” Lily said.

“Was just going along with Alex,” Sirius supplied. “You’ve got to understand. Peter has never had a girl like him, I can see where he would be willing to do anything to keep her.”

“Even betraying his friends?” James asked. There was a silence. Heather buried her head in her hands. She hated this. Why did she have to be caught up in all of this? Why did she have to be a Malfoy? Why did she have to have visions?!

Sirius saw Heather’s actions, and realized that this subject really didn’t need to be talked about right now. He put a hand on her shoulder.

“Sorry,” he muttered.

“Don’t apologize...it’s just...I don’t know who to trust anymore,” she said, looking up earnestly. “Sometimes I think the only person I can trust is you...” she whispered. Sirius smiled softly.

“Get a room!” James said loudly. Sirius threw James a very annoyed look, but it was soon replaced by grin.

“Quidditch anyone?” Lily asked, rather excitedly. Learning something new might be fun...

“Why Lily,” Sirius said, “if I didn’t know better, I would say you were excited about learning Quidditch.”

“Hey, don’t tease her, or else she might change her mind,” James said tentatively, as if Lily was a bomb that could go off at any minute. Sirius stood up, pulling Heather with him.

“Ready?” he asked excitedly. It was only his eager face that forced Heather to nod. How she hated heights. “Great, come on!” he said enthusiastically. This was going to be the best day ever. Combining his two greatest loves...Heather and Quidditch.

~~

“Okay, now you guys learned how to mount and everything, right?” Sirius asked. Heather nodded, and mounted the broom clumsily. Lily did so too, except much smoother than Heather, who was nearly shaking with fright. Was she insane?! “And you’ve ridden a broom before?” Sirius asked her. Heather shook her head, nervously. Sirius stared.

“I’ve never ridden before,” she said, deciding not to explain her horrid fear of heights.

“Never?!” he asked incredulously. “How have you survived?!”

“Chocolate,” Heather said with a smile. Sirius laughed. He got on his own broom, but then thought better of it.

“Actually, take my broom, it will be easier to ride than one of the school brooms, not to mention more comfortable,” he said, swapping her brooms.

“Are you sure you don’t mind?” she asked tentatively. He grinned softly.

“Positive,” he murmured. He stared at her in awe. The bright sunlight bounced off her dark hair, making her look like an angel. Her soft lips were now curved in an anxious smile, yet he also sensed nerves. He figured that was normal, everybody get’s nervous the first time they ride a broom. “You’re beautiful,” he whispered, almost to himself. She laughed, blushing harder than ever.

“I think the sun is getting to you,” she said, smiling brilliantly. He had to look away, his pulse was quickening so fast. He couldn’t believe how badly she effected him. He smiled in spite of himself.

“Alright then, let’s see. You’ve got a good grip on your broom?” he said, checking her grip. “Okay, now sit down, and just hover off the ground a bit,” he said, holding on to her. She took her feet off the ground. Sirius felt her pulse quickening. He smiled, and put his arms around her tighter. “I won’t let you go anywhere,” he said.

“Yeah...” she said distractedly.

“Alright, now I just want you to fly up a few feet. I’ll fly right beside you,” he said charmingly. Heather looked over to see how James and Lily were doing. To her immense surprise, Lily was flying around cautiously. Sirius raised his eyebrows. “She picked that up quick,” he said mildly.

“Well, this is Lily we’re talking about. She has a heart-attack if she doesn’t master something within the first five minutes,” Heather said, trying to sound casual. Her cheeks burned with the knowledge that only a few feet off the air could make her stomach flip-flop all over the place.

“That’s a good point,” Sirius said. Soon they were up in the air. Heather was clutching the broom tightly, and it wasn’t long before Sirius realized. “Are you alright? You look like death,” he said concernedly.

“Yeah, yeah I’m fine,” she said, airily. “Let’s see if we can swoop down a little lower now,” she said. Sirius frowned.

“Heather, are you afraid of heights?” he asked, grabbing her broom to steady her as she was starting to wobble.

“Of course not, I’m just WHOA!” she said as her broom suddenly flopped upside down on her. She held on tightly. Her breath stopped altogether, and so, it seemed, did her heart. She felt as if all the blood had drained from her body. Sirius was beneath her in seconds, pulling her down onto his own broom. Heather squinted her eyes shut, terror visible in every breath she tried to take.

“Heather, why the Hell didn’t you tell me you were afraid of heights!?” Sirius said rolling his eyes, his heart hammering as well. The thought of her getting hurt sent his entire being in a frenzy. He saw how pale her face was, except for the bright red spots on her cheeks where she was blushing with embarrassment. Sirius saw James and Lily heading towards them, but motioned for them to stay where they were. He knew Heather would feel even worse if she thought James and Lily had watched her flip upside-down.

“Well, I thought I would at least try it! I don’t want to be a coward, and you love Quidditch so much...I thought if I tried Quidditch, then maybe we could practice together and stuff,” she Said very quickly as Sirius flew them down to solid ground. He held her tightly, trying to comfort her.

“Heather, it doesn’t matter to me if you can play Quidditch or not!” he said, a slight laugh in his voice. He kissed her on the forehead. “You really are absurd,” he said.

“Thanks,” she said sarcastically, trying to regain her composure. Sirius smiled softly.

“I’m glad you tried it though when I was there. You could have broken your neck,” he said, shuddering at the thought. She looked up at him.

“Oh, yeah. I guess I kind of owe you a thanks. You kind of saved my life,” she said.

“I’d do it a hundred times over,” Sirius said, and he kissed her tenderly just before she collapsed on the ground, unconscious.

~~

Heather looked around nervously. “Sirius?” she asked wildly. Looking around for him. But she couldn’t find him anywhere. She looked at her surroundings, and saw that, oddly, she was in the middle of a room. Yet the room had no windows or doors. It was simply a box, oddly illuminated and rather creepy. “Hello?” she called, but only her echo answered her. Suddenly, however, she was surrounded by a dreary voice. Her ears pounded with the message that was forced into her head:

“The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... And either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies...”


A/N: YAY! We finally get to this part of the story. It gets very intense from here on. And it also gets tougher to write! Because not only am I trying to display some angsty emotions soon, but I'm trying to get the many facts write while still writing my own story! Lol, but I've found many interesting twists and turns that 'm able to do while still being true to the books! Now, I know the whole Quidditch thing was kind of pointless, but I wanted a dramatic setting for Heather to have the vision in. Okay, well review, and as always thanks for reading!

Chapter 21: Prophecy
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Chapter Twenty-One~*~Prophecy


Sirius stared in horror as Heather began to chant something. He tried to listen, but it was so quiet. He lifted Heather into his arms, and yelled for James and Lily. They practically leapt off their brooms.

“What’s wrong? Heather!” Lily said frantically, seeing her best friend dangling with her eyes bright and her mouth moving frantically in a hurried whisper. She leaned closer trying to hear what she was saying. Was it in a different language?

“What is she doing?” James said, nervously.

“She’s having a vision, I think...” Sirius said uncertainly. “Heather? Can you hear me?” he said, his voice shaking slightly. She had been like this for at least five minutes! He shook her small frame, but her head simply wobbled back and forth. He laid her on the ground, holding her freezing hands tightly. His heart pounded. What if she didn’t wake up?! “Heather...please wake up...” he whispered to her forgetting that James and Lily even existed. They didn’t seem to mind, though, they just stood there, watching in horror and confusion.

Suddenly, Heather lurched up, and began yelling in Sirius’ face. “THE ONE WITH THE POWER TO VANQUISH THE DARK LORD WILL BE BORN AS THE SEVENTH MONTH DIES...” she said frantically. Then she seemed to wake up. She looked around, and then moaned in realization. She had just had another vision. She blinked rapidly, trying to clear her head. She looked up at Sirius and realized she was laying in his arms on the ground. He was saying something to her, but she couldn’t hear. All she could see was his mouth moving quickly. She saw Lily and James then, and they looked extremely relieved. They were also talking to her. It was as if somebody had hit the mute button. All she could hear was the soft echoes of the information that had just been crammed into her head. What had that been? Her head reeled as she tried to make sense of it all...

“Heather! Can’t you hear me?!” Sirius yelled. He saw her look up at him oddly. “HEATHER!”

Heather stared up and tried to concentrate on what he was saying. Why couldn’t she hear? But then she heard a faint noise. At first she thought it was the odd voice speaking again, but as she listened harder, she heard that it was Sirius. It sounded as if she was underwater. “I can hear you!” she yelled as loud as she could.

Sirius practically leapt off the ground in shock. She had just bellowed loud enough to wake the Mer-People. “You can hear me? Why are you yelling?” he asked her.

Heather strained her ears, but he was talking too quietly, and she was only able to hear the last bit of his sentence. “Sirius! I don’t know why! I can’t HEAR YOU!” she bellowed. “YELL LOUDER!”

“HEATHER! WHAT JUST HAPPENED TO YOU!” he yelled to her. She nodded, apparently able to hear.

“I’M NOT SURE,” she yelled. Sirius nodded, and held her hand in a motion that was meant to calm her. He stood up, and helped her to stand. Her legs were wobbly, and the world seemed to spin. Her ears throbbed. Would she be deaf forever? Sirius steadied her with his hands around her small waist. But a new fear entered Heather’s heart. What if that voice she had heard had permanently damaged her ears? Maybe it was too loud, or too high pitched, and it had done something to her eardrums. She looked around her in fear. Would she ever heal?

Sirius saw the fear etched in her face. “WE ARE GOING TO TAKE YOU TO DUMBLEDORE, HE WILL FIX YOUR EARS. IT’S GOING TO BE ALRIGHT!” Sirius said as calmly as he could for somebody that was screaming at the top of his lungs. Heather nodded and put on a brave smile. Sirius held her closer, noting how she tried to remain calm. He couldn’t believe how well she was handling this. If it had been him in her position, he would have panicked completely. Or he would have pulled out his wand and started cursing everything in sight.

“You don’t have long to wait, Mr. Black,” a calm voice said. Sirius saw Albus Dumbledore standing before them. He nudged Heather and she looked up. Upon seeing Dumbledore, her face changed from lost and scared to relieved and assured. Dumbledore saw her pale complexion, and frowned, his blue eyes dull, as if the twinkle had been permanently smothered. “Is everything quite alright?” he asked.

Heather looked up at Sirius, unable to hear a word Dumbledore had said. Sirius nodded reassuringly. “Professor, Heather can’t hear you. Something just happened, she...well...I don’t know exactly how to explain it,” he said uncertainly.

“There hasn’t been a fight? Nobody has hexed her, have they?” Dumbledore said, looking oddly at Heather. Sirius shook his head. Dumbledore walked over to Heather and looked straight into her eyes. Heather felt suddenly as if she had known the old man her whole life, a rather impressive feeling having only seen Dumbledore in person once.

“No...it can’t be...” Dumbledore said, his mouth cutting a sharp half circle across his face. “I will need complete silence, if you please,” Dumbledore said. Heather didn’t know what he was saying, but she saw everybody nodding stiffly. Then, oddly, she heard his voice inside her head. She stared at his mouth, but saw that it wasn’t moving.

“Heather, what has happened?” he asked. “Talk to me with your thoughts.” Heather’s eyes were wide with shock.

Sirius stared in apprehension. He wanted so badly to ask what was happening. How long did Dumbledore need silence? He didn’t understand how concentration would be needed for Dumbledore to stand there doing nothing.

“I will require quiet please, Mr. Black,” Dumbledore repeated the order gravely, as though reading his mind. Sirius frowned at the odd behavior of Dumbledore. He was usually quite easy-going. Now he was very tense, and seemed very upset about something.

“I’m...well. I’ve been having visions. I think I might be some sort of a seer or something,” Heather thought frankly. She wondered if Dumbledore had heard her when he nodded.

“I admit to knowing of this, but I did wonder why you never came to tell me,” his voice resounded sadly in her head.

“You knew?” Heather thought incredulously.

“Indeed. A Headmaster knows nearly everything that goes in his school. Or should, in my opinion. I’m afraid I must ask what sort of vision did this to you, so that I may know how to fix it,” he said as though bracing himself for something.

“So you can fix it?” Heather thought relieved. “Well, I was playing Quidditch, and then I kind of fell into a dream, like always. But this one was different. There were no people, and I was just transported to this odd little room. I’m pretty sure that’s irrelevant though. Anyways, there was this terrible voice, and it told me something that seemed very important. I felt like it was being burned into my memory. I can still remember it perfectly...”. She took a deep breath and watched Dumbledore closely. He seemed to be thinking hard.

“Heather, I’ll need you to tell me what you heard,” he said soothingly. “I must know if you heard what I think you heard...” Heather repeated the dream’s words to Dumbledore. When she was finished he didn’t move, but stared in fear.

“I’m sad to say that this is not the first time I have heard that today...” he said, this time aloud. “In fact, that is why I came to get you all.”

Sirius stared in confusion. “Can you fix her hearing?” he said rather frantically. Dumbledore smiled for the first time.

“I believe I can, Mr. Black,” and he waved his wand. Heather suddenly was overwhelmed with noise. The wind, breathing, her heartbeat...

“I can hear again!” she said happily. She leapt at Sirius, hugging him tightly in relief. Dumbledore stared at them smiling sadly.

“What’s wrong, Professor?” Lily asked, concerned. The others focused their attention on the Headmaster.

“I’m afraid that what Heather just witnessed, or heard I suppose, was The Prophesy.”

“The Prophesy?” James snorted. Dumbledore’s distant gaze stopped his grin. He became somber.

“What’s the Prophesy?” Sirius asked.

“I’m afraid that matter will not be discussed here or now. Please follow me to my office, Lily and James.”

“I want to know what I just heard!” Heather said indignantly. She immediately regretted doing so. She couldn’t believe she had just spoken like that to Albus Dumbledore, the most famous wizard next to Lord Voldemort! He turned, but she saw that he looked pleased.

“Good. Come along,” he said.

“And what am I? A sack of beans? I’m coming too!” Sirius said. Dumbledore made no argument, so he caught up with Heather. Before long they were inside Dumbledore’s sizable office. Heather stared in awe, having never been inside before. She saw a large phoenix in one corner, and smiled at it, stroking it’s feathers.

“That is Fawkes,” Dumbledore explained. He sat down behind his desk. “Please have a seat,” he said, motioning to the chairs. Heather noticed that two of them were still empty.

“Why are their two empty seats?” Sirius asked, noticing this as well. His question was answered, however, as the door opened, and Professor McGonagall entered. Trailing curiously behind her were Alice and Frank.

“Sit!” McGonagall said stiffly. Her lips were a tight line, and Heather knew something was definitely wrong. Alice looked questioningly at Heather, who shrugged. McGonagall went to stand in a corner, folding her arms, and looking anywhere but at the students before her.

“Now, I don’t wish to inconvenience anybody, but as you know, I’ve been looking for a Divination teacher. Some parents have complained about the lack of specific subjects in this school, that being the main one.” There was a loud sniff of disapproval from McGonagall. Lily rolled her eyes too.

“So you brought us all here to meet our new Divination teacher?” James said confused. Dumbledore chuckled sadly.

“I wish that were the case, Mr. Potter. No...no, what I have for you today is most important,” and with that he stood up. He walked to a shelf and picked up a large, wooden basin. Heather stared as she recognized what it was. “Do you all know what this is?”

“It’s a pensive!” Lily said aghast. Dumbledore nodded, pulling out his wand.

“I have a particular memory that I must show you,” he said. He placed the wand tip to his temple and pulled a silver string from it, as if pulling off a strand of liquid, sliver hair. He placed the quivering memory into the basin, and twirled it slightly with his wand. The he sat back, his face somber, and the tips of his finger touching lightly. At first nothing happened and Sirius looked at the other students to see what their reactions were, but after awhile, the liquid memory began to swirl into the shape of a woman. Not just any woman, but a very odd looking woman. She looked like a flashy, gauzy beetle, with eyes twice the normal size. She spun around, and her eyes were glazed over, much like Heather’s had been. Except that this woman was able to stand.

“The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... And either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies...” she said. Heather stared as she realized that she and this woman had had the same vision.

“When did she see this?” Heather asked anxiously.

“Around the same time you did, I imagine. I returned to Hogwarts immediately after hearing this,” he said sadly.

“What does it mean?” Lily asked. “What does this have to do with all of us?” Dumbledore didn’t answer, but put the pensive away.

“I’m afraid, Lily, that this has to do only with Alice, Frank, James and yourself,” he said, after sitting down.

“Those who thrice defied...” Alice said, remembering the three times she and her family had dealt with Voldemort. James and Lily also looked nervously at each other. Had they defied him three times? They both knew the answer: Yes.

“No, that can’t be,” Frank said lightly. “I haven’t defied him three times. Only twice.”

“I’m afraid that’s not true. The first time happened when you were but a boy, you wouldn’t remember,” Dumbledore said.

“How could I have fought him as a boy?” he said.

“It was you who were able to get to the phone, Frank. You called Alastor Moody. Do you remember?” Dumbledore asked softly, as if talking to a child. Frank’s eyes widened with realization. Dumbledore chuckled. “Oh, I remember how terrified he was when the telephone rang. I had convinced him that not only wizards needed to get a hold of him. Muggles in a wizard family would need an Auror too.... He told me after wards that he had nearly broke it in his hurry.”

“Yeah...I remember...he was yelling through it,” Frank said with a bitter laugh. Dumbledore sighed, remembering how Frank’s mother hadn’t made it through the torturing. By the time Moody had gotten there, Caroline Longbottom was already dead.

“She died well,” Dumbledore said sadly.

“Nobody dies well,” Frank snapped. “Dying isn’t something you can do well. It’s death.”

“To the well organized mind, death is but the next big adventure,” Dumbledore said. Frank said nothing.

“I still don’t understand what that thing was about,” James said, rather stupidly.

“That was The Prophesy. And I’m sure that most every true seer in the world saw it. Most won’t understand it. Even Trelawny didn’t understand it. In fact, I’m not sure she even remembered it,” Dumbledore said as an after thought.

“Why is it that I remembered it? And why didn’t she fall over and stuff like I do?” Heather asked.

“You are a more advanced seer than she is. She couldn’t remember because she has not enough Seer in her. As for why you lost control of your body, that will come with practice. I’m sure you’ve noticed how much better you’re handling them. You don’t get sick anymore. In fact, if this vision hadn’t been such a powerful one, I’m sure it wouldn’t have effected you at all afterwards,” he said calmly.

“Does this mean that my mother was a seer?” Heather asked.

“No. Being a seer has nothing to do with blood. Being a seer is a completely random occurrence. Healers all over the world are still trying to understand why. I’m sure there is a section on it in the Department of Mysteries as well,” Dumbledore said. “About this Prophesy, it’s quite obvious that none of you realize how serious this is.” Everybody looked at each other. “Lily and James, you are now married, correct?”

“Well, pretty much, yeah,” James said, smiling at Lily.

“Are you aware that you asked Lily to marry you at the exact moment Frank asked Alice?” Dumbledore said. There was a long silence as everybody took in this information. “I assumed not. This is not coincidence.” Nobody moved. Dumbledore nodded sadly, realizing he now had everybody’s complete attention.

“This Prophesy states simply that either of your children will ultimately decide the future of the wizarding world,” Dumbledore said. Dead silence reigned again, but then James burst out laughing.

“This is ridiculous! How do you know that? Just because we have all fought Voldemort three times doesn’t mean anything! There are loads of people that have done that!” he said, waving his hand around in what appeared to be a strained attempt at carelessness.

“But very few who have survived,” Lily pointed out nervously.

“Yeah, well there are still a lot of criteria that we need to fill,” James said.

“He’s right,” Frank said. Dumbledore nodded.

“I do understand this...all I’m saying then is...be careful,” he said. “Now, I suggest that you get back to whatever you were doing. Just...keep this meeting in mind. This Prophesy is no game.”

A/N: This was an interesting chapter for me to write. I had fun thinking up what the reactions of the different people would be to hearing the Prophesy. Hopefully I got them acurately. The easiest , other than my OC's, was Frank's reaction. I felt that I had a lot of room to breath with his character. JKR didn't exactly stamp out his personality already, so I was able to make up his response without trying to stick to a certain type of character. The hardest to write was Lily and James. I didn't know which should be more worried, and if James would continue to be careless and nonchalant, or if he would grow a serious side and learn to grow up a little. And then with Lily, I didn't know if I should show a more vulnerable, less certian side of her or not...Oh well, hopefully I wrote this to your liking! As always, Reviews are appreciated beyond beliefe.Thanks to everybody who reviews regularly=))

Chapter 22: Broken Hearts
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Chapter Twenty-Two~*~Broken Hearts


Months went by, with Heather and Sirius feeling very much like outsiders. Frank, Alice, James, and Lily were much moodier, and with good reason. Also, with the Christmas Holidays being over, Heather and Sirius were back to pretending that they hated each other. The thing that bothered Sirius most, however, was that James seemed to have lost his playful side. He was almost...he hated to say it...paranoid. He had become over-protective towards Lily, and vice-versa. They seemed determined to make sure that neither got caught up in a mess with Voldemort. Things, in Heather and Sirius’ opinion, were getting out of hand. They were determined not to end the school year like this. After all, they only had two months left. What with studying for the N.E.W.T.’s and The Prophesy on their minds, they needed something to cheer them up. That is why, on a bright, warm Sunday morning, Sirius and Heather sat snuggled together outside on the grounds, planning.

“It’s ridiculous. I don’t understand why Dumbledore couldn’t just keep the information to himself,” Sirius grumbled.

“They have to be prepared,” Heather explained. “Just in case...” Sirius shrugged.

“Still, you only get to be seventeen once. Why ruin it with the possibility that the kid you might not even have could save the entire world?” he said, exasperated.

“Well, it’s no use crying over a spilled potion,” Heather said, sighing. “What we need to focus on now is how to fix it.”

“Yeah,” Sirius said. “But how? What will take their minds off it?”

“I think...well...” Heather said, unable to come up with anything. The wind blew through the trees, and the Giant Squid swayed merrily, it’s tentacles making ripples in the large lake. Then it came to her. It was the perfect idea!

“What is it?” Sirius said, seeing her face brighten. “Have an idea?”

“I’ve got it!” she exclaimed. “A dance!” Sirius chewed on his lip for a few seconds, in deep thought. His handsome face slowly allowed a grin. He nodded.

“You know what? You’re brilliant!” he said, squeezing her tightly.

“I know,” she said, jokingly. “So, shall we tell McGonagall?”

“Tell her what?” a curious voice said. The two looked up to see Alex, closely followed by Peter.

“Hello, Alex,” Heather said, stiffening slightly. Alex paid no mind, and sat down. Peter sat down also, a little too quickly. He winced as he sat on a tree root in his haste. Alex looked concerned.

“You alright?” she asked, softly to him.

“Yeah...thanks...” Peter practically drooled, putting on a would-be-brave smile. Heather felt sick, and gave Sirius a glance that he understood all too well. Alex had changed...for the worse. And poor little Peter was so desperate for affection. Heather almost pitied him. Sirius looked sadly at Peter. He missed his friend.

“Hiya, Peter. How’s it going?” he said, trying to start a conversation. Peter gave a smile.

“Great!” Peter said enthusiastically, giving a meaningful glance toward Alex. Sirius gave what he hoped was an encouraging smile.

“What were you two talking about?” Alex asked. It was only because of Peter that Sirius didn’t snap back at her. It really wasn’t any of her business.

“We were saying,” Heather said, deciding it wasn’t that big of a deal to tell her, “that we should hold a dance.” Peter squeaked anxiously.

“That would be awesome!” he said excitedly. Alex threw him a charming smile. Sirius was utterly baffled. Was this girl for real? Did she actually like him?

“That would be neat,” Alex admitted, looking softly at Peter. “We could...go together...” she said. Sirius thought Peter would fall over in glee.

“Uhh...yeah...” Heather said, looking oddly at the two. She threw Sirius a disbelieving look. Sirius simply shrugged.

“So how was your Quidditch lesson yesterday?” Alex said, turning back to Heather and Sirius.

“It was...” Heather said uncomfortably.

“Just fine,” Sirius finished for her, seeing how uncomfortable she was. She squeezed his hand in thanks. He kissed the top of her head. Alex saw this and grinned. Peter blushed, and looked anxiously at Alex, as if he would give anything to be that close to her. Sirius’ felt pity tug at his heart. Poor little guy.

“Alright, well we’d better be off,” Alex said. She stood up, and began walking away. “Coming, Pete?” she asked over her shoulder. Peter nearly fell flat on his face in his hurry to catch up to her. Heather and Sirius both watched them leave.

“I don’t know whether I want to barf or smile,” Heather admitted. Sirius nodded.

“I know what you mean,” he said. “I’ve never seen Peter this way before. In a way...I’m really happy for him. But...Alex?”

“Yeah...they don’t exactly seem to make the most...normal couple...” Heather said.

“I just know that if anything happened between them...well I don’t know how Peter would take it. He’s obviously obsessed with this girl,” Sirius said anxiously.

“Yeah...” Heather said. “And what about how Alex truly feels about him? Do you think she’s for real?”

“That’s what I’m worried about...” Sirius admitted. There was a long silence and then, “Pete?”

~~

About fifteen minutes later Heather and Sirius were standing outside Professor McGonagall’s office. Heather knocked. Nothing happened. Sirius, thinking she might not have knocked hard enough, knocked again. Still nothing. Then after a few seconds, they heard something. It sounded distinctly like somebody crying. Heather threw Sirius a startled look, and then pressed her ear to the keyhole.

“It’s alright, now, dear. Like I’ve said before, it’s not for sure,” came Professor McGonagall’s voice. Except it was her voice as Heather had never heard it before. It was soft and comforting. Heather frowned.

“What is it?” Sirius said. Heather put a finger to her lips. He nodded, understanding, but very anxious to know what was going on.

“I-It’s just...I-I’m s-so scared! I mean, w-what if it is us?” a sobbing voice came afterwards. “I D-don’t want to have that responsibility! A-and if He-Who-M-must-Not-Be-Named d-does come after u-us...one of us m-might get h-hurt!”

“Now, I am going to see who was at the door. Just come and see me again tomorrow, I’m sure everything will sort itself out...” McGonagall said. Heather stood away from the door quickly, stepping on Sirius’ foot in the process. Sirius winced, but said nothing. He leaned against the doorframe, trying to look as though nothing had happened. He tried to search Heather’s surprised face for answers, but she was determinably not looking at him. The door opened, and Alice brushed by them quickly, trying to cover her face with her hair. Sirius saw, however, that her cheeks were wet and her eyes were blood-shot. Had she been crying?

Upon seeing them, McGonagall, sighed and rubbed a hand over her face in a rare show of waning strength. “I’ve been expecting to see you two,” she said, and moved so that they could enter. Heather and Sirius edged in uncertainly.

“Professor...” Sirius started nervously. She went and sat at her desk, and adjusted her spectacles. Heather watched as rare emotion played across her face.

“Please realize,” she said stiffly, “That this is difficult for all of us.”

“Why was Alice in here crying?” Sirius said.

“Why do you think? Black, you’re a smart boy, for goodness’ sake! Say you’ve just realized that you could be a potential targets for the most evil wizard that has ever lived. How would you feel?” she snapped. Sirius looked chastened. Heather sighed sadly. “I did not mean to be so harsh, boy,” McGonagall said sadly. What? McGonagall apologizing?!

“How often does she come here?” Heather asked.

“At least once a week. Frank apparently has been quite distant with her. So she has nobody to talk to,” McGonagall said. Sirius nodded.

“I think we might be able to cheer them up though,” Heather said, trying to brighten up. McGonagall didn’t look convinced. Sirius gave her an encouraging look, and she continued. “I think we should throw a ball.”

There was silence, in which Heather looked uncertainly at Sirius.

“I agree with Heather. I think it would be an awesome idea,” Sirius supported.

Still silence. McGonagall seemed to be in deep thought. “You know what?” she said, a smile curving her lips. “I think you two might have something...”

~~

The next morning Lily got up, and couldn’t quite remember why she was feeling so depressed. She then remembered that night, months ago. The Prophesy. She stood up, and ran a hand through her long red hair. Looking around the room she saw that all the other girls were still asleep. She looked down at the floor, a depression like she had never felt rushed over her. She looked over at the mounds of parchment at the foot of her bed. It was Sunday, and she still hadn’t done any of her homework. She felt something that she couldn’t remember ever feeling; She didn’t care about her homework.

Forgetting to change from her sleep-wear, she trudged miserably down the steps. She allowed a few tears to cling to her lashes, before allowing them to fall daintily down her cheeks. One thought never left her head. If she didn’t stay with James...the Prophesy might not need to be executed. Then that idiotic thought left her as the tug of pain in her stomach showed her how impossible it would be to live without James. She sat on a sofa by the fire, watching the flames dance, just for her.

“Lily?” came a soft, anxious voice from behind her. She didn’t need to turn around.

“James,” she whispered. James came to sit before her. He looked nervous. They hadn’t spoken much lately.

“Lily, look at this...” he said, showing her a piece of parchment. She took it, slowly. “It was on the billboard,” he explained. Lily read it over, and she frowned.

“A dance? In two weeks?” she said curiously. “But that’s right after the exams...”

“Exactly. So...next week exams...the week after that, a dance!” he said, trying to force some cheer into his bride-to-be. He saw that it wasn’t working. “Will you go to the ball with me?”

“Sure,” she said without hesitation. James forced a smile.

“Great...” he said, with no real conviction. “Just you and me...sulking...together.”

“Sounds fun,” she said, obviously not listening to him.

“Yeah, a blast,” he said sarcastically. He started to get up, and walked towards the Portrait Hole, when he stopped. No. He wouldn’t let this ruin what they had together. He frowned, and marched back to Lily, stubbornly. “Okay, this can’t stay like this, Lily,” he said firmly.

“I know,” she said sadly, looking at him for the first time. James grabbed her hand, looking down at her. He sat down beside her. “James...we can’t stay together...”

“Why not?!” he said.

“You heard...The Prophesy,” she muttered miserably.

“Yes, I did hear. And I don’t see any reason why we can’t be together,” he said. “Who said that we are going to have a baby in July?” he asked.

“James...if it’s fate...” she began, but he cut her off.

“Then breaking up will do nothing. If it really is fate like you say, then it’s going to happen no matter what,” James said. Lily looked away, then slowly back at him.

“I’m just...scared,” she admitted. James pulled her into his arms.

“We’ll get through this. Together. Like we always do, Lily. And besides, the Prophesy never said anything about something bad happening! It said that our child might defeat Lord Voldemort!” he said rather proudly. “Isn’t that something to be proud of?”

“Yes...but...what if you get hurt?” she asked.

“Or you,” he whispered, his gaze trailing off into space. Then he seemed to shake out of it. “No. We can’t live like this. This is just like Homework, Lily. It’s just another responsibility,” he said. Lily actually laughed at his analogy. “You’re not one to run from responsibility, Lily.”

“And you are,” she said, smirking. “So how is it that you’re the one doing the pep talk?” she asked, now smiling at him.

“You can’t carry the weight all the time, Lily. Sometimes, I have to take a turn at being the hero,” he said, nuzzling her ear. She moved his mouth to her own, and pressed herself against him in a kiss they had long deprived themselves of. “Is this a yes then?” James said. “You’ll go to the ball?”

“It was never a question. Of course I will,” she said against his ear.

~~

Heather smiled as the two finally worked out their problems. She looked at Sirius softly. He put his arms around her. They quietly closed the Portrait Hole.

“See, your idea was brilliant, love,” Sirius whispered to her. Heather nodded.

“I’m so glad they are feeling better,” she said. Sirius nodded his agreement, then looked around the hallway.

“Come with me, there is something I’d like to ask you,” he said against her lips. She smiled.

“Why can’t you just tell me here?” she asked tauntingly, pulling him closer.

“Because, the walls have ears...” Sirius said, giving a meaningful look up at the Fat Lady who was trying valiantly to pretend she was sleeping. Heather giggled, and allowed Sirius to pull her away into an empty classroom.

“Alright, now. Where were we?” Heather asked. Sirius grinned.

“Before we get back to our...previous discussion, I have a request,” he said. She smiled.

“Anything. Just name it,” she whispered.

“Go to the ball with me?” he asked, his face inches from hers.

“Of course,” she said, and before she knew it, Sirius was kissing her tenderly. She ran her hands across his back, then running her fingers through his hair. He allowed his hands to rest on her hips, pulling them closer to his. Heather’s backside bumped into a desk, and Sirius lifted her up onto it. Now she was a little taller than, sitting up on the desk. He moved so that he stood between her legs. They both forgot completely about the rest of the world. Heather deepened the kiss, trying desperately for more intimacy. Sirius wanted badly to oblige, but would not have it this way. He would not have their first time rushed and nervous in an empty classroom. This was not just a fling, and she was not just a toy. She was the woman he wanted to grow old with, and he would not do that to her.

“Frank! Wait!” came a nervous voice from right outside the door.

Heather stopped their kiss, and it took Sirius a few seconds to understand why. He looked at her curiously, and saw that she was straining to hear something. He stayed absolutely still, waiting.

“Frank!” the voice came again. It was Alice.

“What is it?” came Frank’s deep voice. He seemed out of breath, as did Alice. Heather crept to the door, and slowly, quietly, opened it. Not far away, Alice and Frank stood, staring nervously at each other. Sirius gave Heather an anxious look. They shouldn’t be spying on them. But then a look from Heather pointed out that they had just done so with James and Lily. Somehow, it was different then. They had just been making sure their plan had worked. He assured his conscience that this was what the same thing. He was just seeing if thier dance had helped their relationship. By the looks on their faces, however, it didn’t seem so.

“Frank, I...we...need to talk,” Alice stuttered. Frank said nothing, apparently waiting for her to say more. She cleared her throat. “I know things have been...different since we heard about The Prophesy.”

Frank stiffened. “I don’t think so,” he said curtly.

“Frank, look at yourself. You’re as stiff as a wand. Please, just talk to me...” she begged. Frank looked around guiltily. After several minutes, he still said nothing. Alice decided to speak again. “Alright, well. There’s a ball coming up. I wanted to know if you would, well, go with me?”

There was an eternity of silence. Alice’s heart shone in her eyes, and if you looked close enough, you could watch it slowly break. Frank looked away. “I don’t think...” he said, his voice crackling. “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“Why?” Alice said, tears rolling down her face. Frank gave an exasperated sigh.

“Oh, Alice. Isn’t it obvious? If we stay away from each other, then maybe...maybe we can stop the Prophesy from ruining our lives...”

“What are you saying?” Alice asked, practically sobbing now. Frank looked anywhere but at her.

“I think we should end things...before one of us gets hurt,” he said. His voice was cold.

“No!” she said. She put a shaking hand to her mouth.

“It’s for the best...” he whispered, and without another word, he walked away.

A/N: Well, that was an interesting chapter to write. I was really able to sink my teeth into the emotions of Lily and James. I wanted to go into the way their relationships all changed afterwards. Some were for the better...some...were for the worse. But hopefully things will work out in the end!

Chapter 23: Live Life
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Chapter Twenty-Three~*~Live Life


Remus looked up at the most recent post on the billboard. He smiled. A ball...it was rather odd, and very short notice. Normally Dumbledore wouldn’t leave such things to the last minute. He thought of his friends, but then frowned. His friends. They had been acting so odd lately. They had not been talking to him very much...in fact, they hadn’t been talking to anybody very much. They seemed downright depressed. Even James and Sirius, who were normally the happiest of the gang. He had given up on talking to Peter, and didn’t want to talk to Alex. When he had tried to approach Lily, just to chat, she had given him such a lost, hopeless look. He hadn’t known what to think then, and when he asked Sirius to explain, all he did was shrug and walk away. He couldn’t help but feel slightly resentful, but at the same time, hopeful that his friends would, in time, come to him with their problems. They wouldn't keep him in the dark would they? The marauders were supposed to share everything with each other!

His mind wandered back to the ball. He knew who he would like to ask to the ball...but should he? He grinned then. Why not? Happily determined, he walked towards the Great Hall. Maybe he would find Candy there. He picked up his speed, walking down the narrow hallways.

“You’re just a freak, you know that?” a high-pitched, male voice said, just around the corner.

“What’s with your stupid hair anyways?” another taunting voice carried to him. He frowned.

“Yeah, do you think it’s cool looking like half your head is frozen?” the first voice said. Remus froze. Could they be talking about Candy? He listened carefully.

“Well, at least I don’t look exactly like everybody else,” Candy’s voice snapped back. “Though I don't blame you. If I were you, I'd strive to look normal too,” she countered. Remus followed the voices, and saw that two sixth years had her pinned to a wall. Both were Slytherin. One was a boy that Remus recognized as Thadius Knott. The other was a black girl he didn’t know.

“Don't you dare talk to him like that you freak!!” the girl screeched, grabbing hold of Candy's short blonde and blue hair. Candy balled up her fist and slammed it right into the girl’s eye. The girl flew back, pounding against the wall with surprising force. Remus smiled, but then stopped as Thadius yelled in outrage and made a fist of his own. He used his other arm to hold Candy against the wall. She winced, waiting for the inevitable.

“Abrasio!” Remus yelled in fury. Thadius yelled out in pain. His hands went to his face then. Candy stared as Thadius' face was covered in painful looking blisters.

"What have you done?" Thadius said.

"You look the same to me," Candy remarked, grinning ear-to-ear. Remus' eyes were narrowed, his wand at the ready.

"Get out of here, Knott," he said. "Twenty points from Slytherin!"

Knott looked horrified. Then he turned on Candy. "Twenty points! And it's your fault!" he yelled angrily. He made a big mistake by taking a step towards her. Candy let loose then. She hurled a kick at his leg, just below his knee. He grabbed it then, tottering on one foot. Then Candy swung her leg expertly to one side, until it collided with the back of Knott's other knee. Knott tumbled to the ground, whimpering in pain.

"Permantiora Pigmentatia!" she yelled then, pointing her wand at Knott's head. His hair turned suddenly bright blue. He winced horribly, but felt nothing. He grinned arrogantly.

"Doesn't look like it worked," he sneered.

"Really?" Candy asked him, folding her arms in front of her. She decided not to point out the fact that his hair was blue. She gave a soft little sigh then. "I guess you're right. Well, you better be off then." she said. Knott looked like he wanted to do just the opposite, but with Remus standing not two feet behind her, his wand raised in warning, he decided he better listen to her. He hurried off then, forgetting the girl in the passageway completely.

“Nice shootin’ Tex!” Candy said, grinning ear to ear.

“You're the one who did all the work. Where did you learn to fight like that?” Remus said. Then decided on a more important question. "Are you alright?"

“Never better. Those were some awesome moves though, weren't they?" she said rather proudly. "My dad taught me all about self-defense!" Remus shook his head, smiling. "Well, I guess I owe you my thanks! Though I can handle Thadius myself! I always do,” she continued on merrily.

“Always? He’s done this before?!” Remus asked heatedly. She shrugged.

“And I can beat him every time! Boy does he get sore! You’d think he would learn not to pick on me. It’s just this time he brought a little friend,” she said in disgust. “He cheated!”

“Well, he won’t ever pick on you again, will he?” Remus said angrily, deciding to have a talk with the nasty thing.

“I didn't think you could take points though...!” she said as an after-thought. Remus looked down at her, still shaken. He smiled though, realizing that he had been much more upset by this than she had. He shook his head.

“I can't," he said with pride. Candy gave a loud laugh, doubling over.

"Well, that was certainly an adventure, wouldn't you say? I mean, it's not often you get to take on two Slytherins in a day and completly kick their butts! And did you see the look on his face! I would pay money to see it again! He was simply furious, oh I'm talking too much again, I'll stop," she said. Remus was slightly dazed.

"You are the most bizarre...amazing...wonderful person I’ve ever met,” he said. She grinned.

“Thanks! I think all that stuff about you too. Well, since I think we feel the same way about each other, I think it would be fun if we went to the ball together, don’t you?” she said. Remus stared.

“Actually, that’s what I came to see you about,” he said, blushing.

“I know. I thought I’d save you the trouble of asking. Well, how have you been lately? I don’t think I’ve seen you much recently. You’ve been rather distant. Is it because of your friends? I noticed that they have been acting strangely too,” she said.

“Yeah...” Remus said, trying to keep up with everything she was saying to him.

“I thought so. Well, only you can ruin your day. Wait and everything will work itself out. It always does. Just sometimes it takes a long time,” she said wisely.

“Yeah, well I always thought of myself as patient, but this is just ridiculous,” he muttered. Candy stared at him, obviously thinking very hard.

“Is there anything I can do?” she asked. Remus smiled.

“Just stay yourself,” he muttered.

“Well, I think I can do that,” she said, laughing. Then she jumped, looking at her watch. “Oh, but I’d better go. Gobstones is about to start! I’ll see you!” and with that she took off at a run. Remus stared after her, feeling as he always did whenever he left an encounter with her: windswept.

~~

Heather and Sirius said nothing to each other the whole walk to the Common Room. In fact, if they hadn’t been holding hands, you would have thought they hadn’t even noticed each other.

“This isn’t your fault,” Sirius said firmly, reading Heather’s thoughts.

“It was my idea to have a ball. If I hadn’t suggested it, Frank and Alice might still be together,” she said dismally. Sirius stopped and put an arm around her.

“Heather, listen to me. Trust me when I say, it wasn’t the reason they broke up, it was just an outlet. Frank would have found another reason, if the ball hadn’t been announced. And besides, this ball is the reason Lily and James are back to normal,” he said, bending over slightly to look into her eyes. She looked sadly at the ground.

“What can I do to fix this?” she whispered. Sirius pulled her into a hug, closing his eyes against the top of her head.

“There is nothing to fix. We weren’t supposed to hear, remember?” he said.

“Yes...but...Maybe I can talk some sense into Frank. The ball is in two weeks,” she said, hope restored in her eyes. “There is still time,” she said. It was only her look of desperate hope that Sirius didn’t object.

“It isn’t your job to help everybody,” he said, and pulled her tight against him.

“WHAT IS THIS?!” a loud voice carried to them, causing Heather to jump. She spun around to see Lucius standing at the end of the hallway, watching Sirius and Heather disgustedly. “I warned you!” he yelled, running forward.

“Lucius...” Heather began.

“Shut up!” he yelled at her. “I’m going to get him! He will pay for your mistake! Blood-Traitors!” he roared. He started to turn back to tell his friends and get a small army to help him, but stopped as he noticed that somebody was blocking his way. Heather stared in relief as she saw Albus Dumbledore standing, his hands clasped behind his back, looking down at Lucius.

“I don’t think it necessary to raise your voice, Mr. Malfoy,” he said cooly. “Anybody within a mile could hear with crystalline clarity.” Heather smiled, as did Sirius. Lucius gave an audible gulp. “Now then, as to the content of your raging. I do believe that you were threatening one of my students. Is that correct?” he asked.

“Of course not, Professor!” Lucius said, feigning shock.

“Hmmm...well, my ears might be old, but I’m quite certain that I’ve heard quite enough to convince me that you’re not being completely truthful. If you would be so kind as to join me in my office?” he said, and began to walk away. Lucius threw an enraged look over his shoulder before trudging miserably behind Dumbledore. As soon as the two had turned the corner, Heather and Sirius exchanged a high-five.

Dumbledore smiled, hearing the exchange.

~~

Heather gave Sirius a last, nervous look before entering the Common Room alone. As she had predicted, Frank was sitting in a melancholy heap on one of the shadowy armchairs by the fire. He looked as though he was fighting the urge to throw himself into it.

“Hi,” Heather said, going to sit in a chair opposite his.

“Hey,” Frank said, not even looking up. Heather thought desperately, how could she explain to him that she had been eves-dropping? “I guess you’ve come to talk to me about Alice?” he asked. Heather didn’t register for a second that he already knew, and was already half-way into a plan to confess when she understood.

“You...you knew?” she said, amazed.

“Yeah, I knew. So, what is it that you want? You can’t talk me out of it, so don’t bother,” he said.

“Frank,” she said soothingly. “You can’t live your whole life running from something that might not ever happen. A life lived in fear is no life at all!”

He snorted. “Heather, you couldn’t possibly understand,” he said.

“Then explain it to me!” she replied, stubbornly. He sighed.

“That’s how my mother died. Voldemort killed my mother. I would rather live alone than have that happen to Alice,” he admitted. There was a long silence.

“You're trying to protect her?” Heather asked. Frank nodded. “Why don’t you tell her that then? That way she won’t think that you don’t like her for some reason!”

“If I tell her that, she’ll just insist that I’m being stupid, and that I shouldn't worry about her. It’s better if she thinks that I don’t love her anymore,” he whispered. Heather shook her head. Boy, did this bring back memories.

“Frank, you may not believe me, but I recently went through something very similar to what you’re going through. Trust me, it’s better to let her in. You’ll both be a lot happier if you let her know what you’re actually thinking.”

“What if she gets hurt!” he insisted.

“She could get hurt whether you’re there with her or not!” Heather insisted. When Frank said nothing, she continued. “She could get hurt just as easy if you’re not there. She could be walking across a street, and get hit by a car. If you had been there with her, you might have realized in time to pull out your wand,” Heather explained. “What’s going to happen, will happen. Don’t spend your days running from it. Live life, Frank!” she said softly. Frank stared at her, then a smile cautiously grew across his face.

“You’re right,” he said. “You’re absolutely right.”

“I know I am! Now go up to the girls dorms and tell her how you really feel!”

“Should I wait until she’s awake though?” he said uncertainly, but looking anxious.

“Frank, after what you just put her through, I doubt she’s asleep,” Heather admitted. Frank gave her a guilt-ridden nod, and began towards the steps. He got to the bottom before turning around and rushing to Heather. He gave her a friendly hug.

“Thanks,” he muttered, and then turned back distractedly. Heather smiled as she watched his robes whip out of sight as he levitated himself up the steps.

“You were wonderful,” a husky voice said behind her. She smiled as Sirius came to sit next to her.

“Thanks,” she said, leaning against him.

“You’re quite the match-maker,” he said, putting his arms around her. She snuggled closer, tucking her head under his chin.

“I don’t think I’ll be sleeping up there tonight,” Heather said, laughing as a squeal of delight and a loud thump met their ears. Sirius nodded.

“I’ll stay down here with you,” he said, and laid down on the couch, pulling Heather with him. She laid her head on his shoulder, and closed her eyes, falling into a peaceful sleep.


A/N: Well, this was a good chapter in my opinion. Only good things came from it! Remus and Candy had a nice little meeting that was loads of fun to write. Candy is a character that I really enjoy writing! And that scene with her fightin with Knott was especially entertaining. She really showed him who was boss! Lol. And then of course we had Lucius getting exactly what he deserved! That was fun to write, I love writing Dumbledore, so any small chance to do so, I take it! And with Frank, I had a wonderful time exploring his character. And now that I have figured him out, I quite like him! Well, enough of my notes, they always turn out so long! Oh well, hope you enjoyed the chapter, and please review letting me know what you liked/disliked about the chapter!

Chapter 24: Soul, Body, and Heart
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Chapter Twenty-Four~*~Soul, Body, and Heart


The next week flew by, and things were pretty much back to normal. Lily, James, Alice, and Frank were their old selves, which meant that Lily was stressing about how well she had done on her N.E.W.T.’s, James was trying to cheer her up with his absurd behavior, and Frank and Alice were inseparable. They soon decided that, instead of keeping to themselves, like before, they would rather hang out with the Marauders. Alex and Peter were...well...Alex and Peter. The gang hardly saw the couple, except during classes. What they did see of them, however, the more they disliked Alex. Peter seemed to want to be with the Marauders, but as Alex didn’t, he followed along. Heather and Sirius were much relieved that their friends were feeling better, but they still had one weight that was nagging at their shoulders. Remus. He didn’t know about the Prophesy. Should they tell him?

“It would seem kind of awkward, don’t you think?” Heather asked Sirius, walking to a well deserved dinner after the last exam.

“Well, yeah, but doesn’t he still have the right to know? I mean, even Peter knows,” Sirius said, frowning guiltily.

“Only because he over heard us talking about it the other day,” Lily pointed out.

“Yeah, but Remus is one of our closest friends,” James said. “I think we should tell him.”

“But it’s like Heather said. It would be kind of odd,” Frank admitted. “I mean, how would we say it? ‘Hey, Remus. Would you pass the butter? And by the way, Voldemort might be after us!’” There was an odd silence, as the group thought about what they should do.

“How about, if the occasion calls for it, we tell him,” Alice said nervously. Everybody nodded.

“Tell who what?” a jovial voice said behind them, making them all leap a foot in the air. They all turned to see Remus standing, smiling and holding a girl’s hand. They all did a double-take. Remus...holding a girl’s hand??!!

“Nothing!” they all said at once. Remus stopped smiling.

“What’s up?” he asked, suspiciously.

“We’re just talking about the ball...you know,” Lily said, putting on an airy laugh. “It’s so soon! And I really don’t know what to wear.”

“Oh...right,” Remus said uncertainly. Nobody spoke for a few seconds, and looked anywhere but at Remus, who was frowning and looking very hurt. What were they hiding from him? He thought. He cleared his throat. “This is Candy,” he announced. Candy shoved out her hand, and shook everybody’s with gusto.

“Pleased to meet you all! I’ve heard so much about everybody, it’s amazing to finally see you in person,” she greeted. Everybody laughed, giving her hair odd looks.

“Well, I’m glad to meet you too,” Heather said, the first to recover. Candy smiled at her.

“Are you two back together then?” Candy inquired, noting how Sirius and Heather had their arms around each other. It took the two a second to realize what she was talking about.

“Oh...our fight,” Sirius said, looking pointedly at Heather.

“Oh, yes. Well, you know, just a minor little thing. Everybody has their little disagreements,” she said, looking very uncomfortable.

“It looked more like a catastrophe to me,” Candy said, smiling. She didn’t understand why they were acting so odd about their fight, but decided not to push it. “So...shall we go to dinner? You guys must be starved after all the thinking you must have had to do!” They all laughed and went to sit down.

~~

Several days later, it was the eve of the ball, and everybody was quite nervous. The now close-knit group of friends were practically related as they spent all of their time together. Even Peter found times when he would stay and talk with Sirius or James. Now, however, all the girls were in the girls dorm getting ready, and the boys were downstairs groaning.

“How long does it take to put on a dress?” James complained loudly.

“Seriously, you would think two hours would be enough!” Sirius said, looking very handsome in a crisp black robe. It looked much like the school robes. He had his hair slicked back rather nicely, and had a rose held tightly in one fist. On the outside, he would look calm and collected, but it was obvious he was quite nervous. James, who had on dark blue dress robes, didn’t try to hide his anxiety as he was pacing back and forth, running his hand through his flyaway black hair. He had honestly tried to keep it tame, but even the hundred spells he put on it did nothing. Remus said nothing, and looked almost giddy.

“It’s not like they’re going to be late or anything, we’ve still got plenty of time,” Remus admonished. Sirius snorted.

“Yeah, well, I’d like to get their a little early,” James said. He saw Remus’s happy face and smile then, stopping his pacing.

“What?” Remus asked, noticing that Sirius was also staring at him.

“It’s good to see you happy, mate,” James said. Sirius nodded.

“It’s not often we get to see you smile,” he said, walking over to clap him on the back. Remus grinned.

“Well, it’s not often that I get a girlfriend that understands me,” he admitted. “I just wish I could understand her!”

“Here Here!” James said. “Girls are so confusing!” The boys burst out laughing; Seconds later the sound of high-heels on the steps reached their ears. They froze and looked up.

“What was that last bit?” Lily said, smirking at James. But, for the life of them, the boys couldn’t remember anything now. At seeing their dates coming down the steps, they would be lucky to remember their own names. There was no doubt in each of their minds that they had the best looking girl in the school. Lily had on a dark green dress, that hugged her curves and flattered her eyes. Embroidered up the skirt were dainty pink flowers, and at the waist was pinned a small, beaded rose. The spaghetti-straps were nothing but a beaded length of lace. James knew then and their that he would grow old with this girl. He went over to her, and grabbed her gloved hand.

“Ready to go?” Lily asked, also looking him up and down. She obviously like what she saw, as she pecked him softly on the cheek.

“Ummm...” James garbled. Lily laughed.

“Ok, I’m going to take lover boy outside for a walk. We’ll be waiting for you all,” she said, and led James out of the Common Room.

Sirius nodded dumbly, but Remus was too entranced even to move. Candy was looking splendid in a bright pink, gauzy dress. It fell to about mid-calf, and was very vivid. Oddly enough, it’s bright colors looked good on her. He noticed also that the once blue streaks in her hair had turned a light pink, looking absolutely adorable with her blonde hair.

Sirius felt as though he would need sun-glasses if she ever turned the dress on full power, but decided not to comment, as Remus looked as if he might fall over in awe. He instead looked at Heather, and his heart clenched. She was beautiful. She had on a soft, creamy, light blue colored dress, that went all the way to her feet. It brought out the magnificent color of her eyes, and contrasted wonderfully with her long, dark hair. The skirt swayed about her feet like an adoring ocean. Showing off her curves was a darker blue, strapless, medieval-fashioned corset, which was laced up the front with soft colored lace. She had a single, silver band around her neck, and glitter sprinkled across her bare shoulders. Her make-up was light, with only some mascara and lip-gloss. Her hair, however, was the masterpiece. She had pulled it all up, and clipped it to her head with a sparkling silver butterfly, allowing the rest to trickle down her back in luscious curls. A few strands were let down to frame her face as well.

“You look...” Sirius searched for a word that could describe her beauty, but found that none were grand enough. He instead held out the rose.

“Thanks,” Heather said. “You too.” She grinned, looking him over and noting how extremely handsome he looked in his dress robes. She blushed, knowing that he had been staring at her for a very long time. Sirius saw her blush. He walked to her, and was about to kiss her, when somebody cleared their throat loudly.

“We do need to be heading off,” Remus said, smiling with his arm around Candy. Both Heather and Sirius rolled their eyes. Sirius began to walk away, but Heather grabbed his shoulder and held him back to whisper in his ear.

“Tonight,” she said, before walking ahead of him. All Sirius could do was look on in curiosity.

They met Lily and James downstairs, and moved towards the Great Hall. Music met their ears, and they all grinned at each other delightedly. They saw that other couples were already milling around, and sitting at the new, smaller tables that had been set out. A large area had been set out for dancing. Most people looked either absolutely gitty, waiting for Dumbledore to begin. First they were to eat dinner, and then, the dancing. Heather saw the band and her eyes went wide with excitement. They were the Blood Bats, a group of rather talented Vampires. They were now playing a hasty tune, and the lead singer, Natahla, was obviously having a blast. Heather grinned.

“They’re a great band,” Sirius said, seeing Heather’s own enthusiasm. She nodded.

“They’re my favorite!” she said, smiling and putting her arm around his.

“Yeah...” Sirius said, blushing. He decided not to tell her that it was at his own suggestion that Dumbledore get them for the ball. He remembered that one day, before giving her Quidditch lessons. She had said it was her favorite band. The group found pulled three tables together and sat down.

After about fifteen minutes, the Hall was getting loud. Dumbledore stood up, looking around at everyone. He cleared his throat, and the students silenced. The music stopped, and all attention turned to him

“Welcome, to the End Of Year Ball,” Dumbledore said. He paused for the effect. “For some, this will be the end of a final year at Hogwarts,” he eyed Sirius, Heather, and the rest of the gang as he said this. Heather noted that he showed a certain sadness. “For others, it is the end of the first of many, and hopefully, it was a good year. This is a rare occurrence,” he continued. “A ball is an odd happening in the school of Hogwarts, especially on such short notice. This year, however, is somewhat different.” There was a long silence, and for a dreaded moment, the Marauders thought he was going to tell them about The Prophesy. “Now...I invite you to eat to your heart’s content, and then dance until your feet are sore. This brings me to my introduction of...The Blood Bats!”

Loud cheers followed his words and the Blood Bats began playing a new, slower song. The Marauders sighed in relief as food appeared at the hundreds of tables.

“What do you think?” Sirius whispered to Heather.

“I’m not sure.... It couldn’t be something about The Prophesy could it?” Heather muttered.

“Well, lets not let it ruin our night!” James said, trying to get Lily to smile. Lily only nodded. James sighed, then he spotted something. “Hey...check it out!” They all turned to see Alex and Peter sitting together...making-out over their dinner plate! Heather grimaced. Sirius pretended to vomit.

“Wow...there’s something you don’t see everyday...”Remus said. Everybody nodded. They moved to their plates, and dug in. It was delicious.

Soon, the plates were cleared off, and couples began moving towards the dance floor. The Blood Bats began to play a soft, more romantic melody. Heather grinned, watching as Lily and James took off. She was surprised to see that James, and not Lily, was the better dancer. Sirius came to stand before her.

“Good evening miss,” Sirius said, bowing. He put on a snobbish face, and straightened his posture. He looked like a butler, to be honest.

“Hello, sir,” Heather said, playing along. “Lovely evening,” she added with a haughty sniff.

“Indeed,” he said, looking around. Heather very obviously knocked her napkin onto the floor. She gave a very petite gasp of horror.

“Oh, my dear! Allow me to assist you!” Sirius said at once. He dropped down on one knee, and handed her the napkin. She took it, but he captured her hand, and placed a kiss on it. “May I have this dance?”

Heather pretended to think. “I suppose, if my dance card isn’t too full,” she joked. Sirius pulled her up, and looked down at her.

“I didn’t get to tell you how beautiful you look tonight,” he said, giuding her to the dance floor.

“Yeah, I’ll admit to being unable to find the right words,” Heather said, smirking. Sirius put one hand at the small of her back, and the other one holding her own hand. She leaned her head against his shoulder. Sirius couldn’t remember being happier. Heather closed her eyes, feeling as though this was a dream come true.

The rest of the night seemed to move quickly, and before they knew it, midnight had come and gone. It was almost one in the morning when Dumbledore called an end to the ball. They all filed out, and Sirius was prepared to go back to the Common Room when Heather held him back.

“Wait...” she muttered. He looked curiously at her.

“Are you alright?” he asked, frowning.

“Of course, nothing’s wrong,” she said, laughing. It was a nervous laugh, but she was excited all the same. “Come with me,” she whispered, and took him the opposite direction of the other students. She seemed to be counting hallways, and doors. Sirius didn’t say anything, in case he broke her concentration. “Alright, here we are,” she said. Sirius looked around. It looked like a dead end to him. The only thing visible was a little rug in the corner. On the rug was embroidered a lion, and as he looked closer he saw that the lion was wearing a crown. Heather went to stand on the rug.

“What are you doing?” Sirius asked incredulously, thinking she might have eaten something funny at the ball.

“Come and stand with me,” she said, holding out her hand. He took it, and tried to fit himself on the small rug without trampling Heather’s tiny feet. He felt her breathing deeply.

“What are we doing? Are you alright?” he said anxiously. Heather looked up at him.

“Alright, at the same time we need to say the password,” she explained.

“The password?” he asked.

“Yes, the password is Botany,” she said. “Don’t ask me why.”

“Okay,” he said slowly.

“On the count of three. One...Two...Three!” and they both yelled ‘Botany.’ They both blinked, and then nearly fell over in shock. Heather laughed. “It worked!” she exclaimed.

“What the Hell?!” Sirius gasped, looking around. They were not in the hall anymore. But in a large room. In the room was a big, squishy bed. At first, he thought that he had entered a garden. But he realized that he wasn’t outside when he saw that there were walls. The walls were so hard to see, however, because of the large flowers that surrounded the place. Little blue flowers covered the floor, and replaced carpet. The room was beautiful as sunlight poured through the most-likely magical windows. Vines climbed the posts of the bed. Heather grinned.

“Isn’t it amazing?” she asked. Sirius just stared.

“Yeah, it is, actually,” he muttered. “What is this place?”

“It’s the Head Girl’s room. Lily was allowed to use it to sleep in if she wanted to, but didn’t want to be so isolated. She said we could use it tonight...” Heather said, blushing. Sirius looked incredulously at her. He saw that she was looking very nervous and flustered, but at the same time, excited.

“What are you saying?” Sirius asked, unable to believe it.

“What do you think I’m saying?” she asked. Sirius shook his head.

“Heather...if you don’t want to...”

“You’ve been so patient with me,” she murmured. “I want to thank you.”

“Heather, you thank me everyday just by smiling, or talking to me, or looking at me!” he said with an almost nervous laugh. What was wrong with him?! The most beautiful girl in the world was asking him to sleep with her, and he was trying to talk sense into her?! This was so...not Sirius! He did stuff like this all the time! He was known for it. He wanted so bad to take what she was offering, but he didn’t want to ruin what they had together. His body ached with want, but his heart ached with fear. Heather watched as these emotions played across his unguarded face. She walked to him, and stood barely an inch from him.

“I want to share this with you tonight. I want to show you my love in a way I’ve never shown anybody,” she said, looking up at him. Sirius’ heart swelled with joy.

“But if you’re not ready...” he said, breathlessly. He didn’t want her to be rash, and then wake up upset that she had done it.

“Sirius, I’ve been thinking about this for weeks now. This isn’t just a sudden urge. You’re the only thing I live and breath for. I want to make love to you tonight,” she whispered. Sirius gulped.

“I’ve dreamt of this,” he muttered, picking her up in his arms, and trying not to rush her. He slowly laid her on the light, feather-soft bed. He took her hair out of it’s clip, and allowed it to rippled across the beautiful flowers. Leaning over her, he laid a gentle kiss to her lips.

“Sirius?” she asked tentatively.

“Mmmm?” he said, kissing the side of her neck.

“After this, you’ll still want to be with me forever, right?” she said, saying the thing that had been nagging at her for months now. Sirius stopped and looked at her.

“Heather, do you honestly not know the answer to that?” he asked, looking a little hurt.

“Sorry,” she said hastily. “It’s just...never mind,” she said. Sirius took both of her hands in his.

“Nothing will ever make me stop loving you,” he said softly.

“Good,” she said, looking up at him. Sirius continued their kiss, and soon, nothing could break their bonding passion. They now shared everything with each other. Their soul, body, and heart.


A/N: Oh, well this was a wonderfully awesome chapter to write! There wasn't anything depressing in it! It was all very cheerful, and roantic in my opinion! I had sooooooo much fun describing the dresses! I tried to make sure that each dress fit the girl's personalities. And of course, at the end, we had to end the ball with a litte...heat. Well, let me know what you think! Did you like the dresses? Which one was your favorite? Whatever, just drop me a review! Any critiques are welcome, as always! Thanks!!!!

Chapter 25: Andromeda
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Chapter Twenty-Five~*~Andromeda


Heather and Sirius lay together, sleeping heavily, their bodies entwined. Even the flowers seemed to sigh in contentment. It seemed that they could lay like this forever, but they were interrupted by a loud knock on the ceiling. Heather awoke first. She looked at Sirius who was still sleeping. She smiled happily. The knock sounded again, and this time Sirius woke up.

“Heather?” he said, and then he saw her. He smiled. “Come back to bed,” he murmured, and pulled her back down under the covers.

“Sirius, listen,” she said urgently. Sirius listened, and again the knock.

“What do you reckon?” he asked nervously. Heather shrugged. Then looked around the room. Their once strewn-about-the-room clothes were neatly folded. Sirius stared in horror. “Somebody came in and folded our clothes!”

“No, silly,” heather said, laughing. “It’s the flowers,” she muttered. “Lily warned me about them. They are here to serve in any way they can.”

“Do they have eyes?” he said uncertainly, moving farther under the covers.

“No. Luckily, they don’t have ears either,” she said, blushing. Sirius grinned too.

“Come on, everybody will be wondering where we are,” she muttered. And then she turned to the flowers. “Clothes, please. Casual.”

“What are you...” Sirius began, but stopped as the flowers suddenly pulled from their depths some clothes for the two of them. They quickly dressed. Somebody knocked again.

“What if it’s Dumbledore?” Heather said nervously.

“Then we’ll just tell him we were...checking on the flowers,” he said playfully. Heather laughed. Really, nothing could ruin her day now. Even if the whole school knew.

“Come on,” Heather said, grabbing Sirius’ hand and pulling him over to a little rug in the corner. Sirius recognized it as the same rug from the hallway. For a second time, they said the password, and, in a blink, they were back in the hall. This time, however, they were not alone. Heather looked around and saw a very solemn, beautiful woman staring at them. She was slender, yet with a very full figure. She had the blackest eyes Heather had ever seen. Also, something Heather couldn’t miss, was the fact that this woman was extremely pregnant. Her hair was black as midnight, and she looked an awful lot like...

“Sirius,” the woman warily. Sirius smiled.

“Andromeda!” he said jovially. He gave the woman a hug. Andromeda patted him on the back, trying to smile. “It seems you’re coming along well,” he said, noting her large stomach. “Heather, this is my cousin!”

“Yes...” Andromeda said, giving Heather a distracted nod. “Sirius, the Head Master said I might find you here. I must speak to you...alone, I think...” she said, eyeing Heather, who frowned, but then nodded. She began to walk away.

“Oh no, you don’t” Sirius said, grasping her hand. Anything that needs to be said to me, can be said to her too,” he insisted.

“But Sirius...” Andromeda said sadly.

“No, Heather stays,” Sirius said firmly. “Now, what is so important that you barge all the way into Hogwarts to talk to me?”

Andromeda gave a loud sigh. “Sirius...it’s of the utmost secrecy!”

“It’s alright, Sirius I’ll just leave,” Heather said, not wanting to start a fight.

“Heather, no!”

“Sirius!” Andromeda began in frustration.

Sirius only glared.

“Very well. Sirius. We’ve come to ask you to join The Order,” Andromeda said with great importance.

“The what?” Sirius said.

“The Order, Sirius. It’s an anti-Voldemort organization,” she said. “Now, only once you are after school will you be able to join, but that’s only a few days away.”

“And why are you telling me about this? Who runs it?”

“I do,” a calm voice said from behind them. They turned to see Dumbledore. “It has only existed for a short while, but so far we have many members.”

“Are you in it?” Sirius asked his cousin.

“Of course not!” she said. “Think of who I’m married to!” Sirius put an arm around her shoulder.

“Alright, then why did you have to come and tell me? Why can’t Dumbledore just tell me?” he asked.

“Because, though I’m not in it, I’m the only one who can give away it’s whereabouts,” she said proudly. Sirius nodded.

“You are serious, right?” he asked. “This isn’t one of your silly jokes?”

“I would never joke about such a thing,” she said indignantly. He looked to Dumbledore.

“She is telling the truth, Sirius,” he assured. “Andromeda, I would also like you to tell miss Malfoy,” he added, watching Heather’s face.

“WHAT?!” Andromeda said outraged. “Malfoy?!” she gasped. Heather sighed in frustration. She opened her mouth to put this girl in her place, but Dumbledore got there first.

“Andromeda, think of your own surname,” he said. Andromeda paused.

“You’re right, Albus. Sorry...” she said to Heather, who simply nodded. “Alright, shall I tell them the location, then?”

“Not here,” Dumbledore said, looking around. "We must wait until the others arrive,” he said.

“The others?” Andromeda, Sirius and Heather said simultaneously. Dumbledore nodded.

“Come,” and he swept away, with the three others following close behind. Once they had reached the office, they saw Remus, Lily, James, Frank, Peter, Alice, and Alex already standing around, looking nervous. Upon seeing Heather, Lily looked relieved.

“Where have you two been?” James mouthed. Sirius only smiled.

“Alright,” Dumbledore said loudly, walking through the sea of people to the chair behind his desk. He sat down. “All of you, are being given the option of being in The Order.”

“What is The Order?” Alex said loudly. Dumbledore looked at her.

“The Order of the Phoenix,” he said. Nobody moved, but took in the boastful name. “It is a group of trustworthy people I have gathered together in the past years. It is an organization dedicated to seeing through the downfall of the Dark Lord Voldemort. I have watched you all closer than you know, and have picked you out from your fellow students. You, above the rest, would make The Order proud. I do not force this burden upon you, and warn that this is no game. There is a chance that one or more of you will not make it through this alive.” Peter gave a loud gulp. “I ask you now. Join me?”

Nobody moved, or made a sound. Then James cleared his throat. “I’d love to,” he said. Lily looked nervously up at him. She couldn’t possibly let him go through it alone...

“Me too,” she said, holding his hand tightly.

“Yeah...I’ll join,” Alice said. Frank nodded, smiling rather proudly. Sirius looked down at Heather, and then grinned.

“Sounds like fun. Nothing like a little death to brighten up the day,” he said. Heather sighed. What was she getting herself into?

“I’ll join,” she said, nodding satisfiedly. “I’d be honored.” Dumbledore’s eyes twinkled, and he winked at her. All eyes turned to Alex. She seemed to be squirming under the heavy gazes of her fellow Gryffindors.

“Alex?” Dumbledore said cooly.

“I...well...Peter, you must understand...” she muttered. It was obvious that she was terrified. Peter put an arm around her.

“I’m afraid that a decision needs to be made,” Dumbledore urged softly. Alex then burst into tears. Sobbing, she ran towards the door. Dumbledore stood up swiftly. “Imobilus,” he said sadly, his wand out. Alex froze. Dumbledore sighed, shaking his head.

“I’ll take care of it, Head Master,” McGonagall said.

“I do believe a memory charm will be needed, Minerva,” Dumbledore said, looking crest-fallen. McGonagall nodded, and levitated the paralyzed Alex out of the room.

“You never said where it was...” James said, very curious.

“Oh, yes. I do believe it slipped my mind...well, Andromeda, proceed,” Dumbledore said, giving her his complete attention. Andromeda nodded, very business-like. She cleared her throat.

“Remember this well. The Location of The Order of The Phoenix is The Garlock Hotel, room 110,” she said. There was long silence, then Sirius snorted.

“The Order Of The Phoenix is in a hotel room?” he asked. Dumbledore gave a little smile.

“I’m afraid that we were having some trouble finding a suitable location. This is only temporary,” he said.

“Yeah...but a hotel? With people coming in and out...won’t people notice that we’re always in and out of that place?” Lily asked nervously.

“Oh, but Ms. Evans, Garlock Hotel has been abandoned for at least twenty years!” Dumbledore said reassuringly. “Please don’t worry yourselves. The Members and I have gone to great lengths to ensure our secrecy. Many charms are placed around the old building. If someone not in The Order gets within a mile of the place, they will become suddenly extremely frightened, and even the swaying of a branch will scare them back on their brooms. Also, the place is unplottable, not to mention the many other charms I will not explain in this room,” he said. All were quite, and Sirius felt very guilty about questioning the hotel.

“Now, we are all in agreement,” Dumbledore said grandly.

Everybody nodded.

“Very well,” he said, standing up. “Welcome to the Order of the Phoenix.”

A.N: Well, this chapter was an interesting one, and fun to write because of Andromeda. I really enjoyed writing her character, because she was esentially a female Sirius! I particularly liked the part where Alex ran out of the room because she didn't have the guts to join! Ha!

Chapter 26: Farewell to Malfoy
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Chapter Twenty-Six~*~Farewell To Malfoy


Slowly they all filed out of Dumbledore’s office. Nobody spoke, but looked around, nervous and thinking hard. Sirius looked over at Heather, who was looking down at the ground, staring at it with great intensity, as though concentrating hard on a test.

“You okay?” he asked her, stopping to let the others pass. Heather stopped walking too. She looked up at him, frowning.

“I was just thinking...what if Lucius finds out?” she whispered, rather ashamed. Sirius barked out a laugh, causing Remus to give him an odd, sideways look as he passed. Sirius grinned apologetically, and Remus rolled his eyes. Sirius continued.

“Listen, they aren’t going to find out. Don’t worry about it. School is over in a few days, and you’ll never have to see him again,” he said, putting an arm around her. “I’ve already been looking through the Prophet, and I think I’ve found the perfect place!” he said excitedly. Heather frowned, confused.

“The perfect place for what?” she asked.

“For us to live!” he said. It’s pretty close to where James and Lily are going to be!” he said, grinning. Heather’s eyes widened.

“They’ve already got a place to live?!” she asked him, nonplused.

“Yeah...but don’t tell anybody, they wanted to keep it quiet,” Sirius said secretively. Heather shook her head, smirking at how he could still be so light-hearted after all they had just heard. They had just signed on to a job that could possibly get them both killed. Heather shivered at the thought of something happening to Sirius. She sighed.

“Sirius, how do expect to pay for a house? I don’t have any money, you don’t have any money...” she said, but he cut her off, aghast.

“What do you mean, I don’t have any money!” he said. “Of course I have money!” he said.

“But your family....”

“Doesn’t control the money I had before they disowned me,” he finished, proudly. “I have enough to get us by, Heather. And I can get a job too.”

“Sirius...I can’t let you pay for an entire house!” she said exasperated.

“Heather, I need a house anyways, my family kicked me out. It makes no difference if you’re there or not, money-wise. But...Heather. You don’t understand. I want to be with you,” he said.

“Sirius, I want to be with you too, more than you can imagine, but...I would feel so terrible with you paying for everything. I’ll live with the Malfoys until I earn enough money to pay half of the...”

“No!” Sirius said firmly. “There is no way I’m going to let you live with those freaks. Lucius and his father would force you to be a Death Eater,” he said. Heather said nothing, torn. She wanted so badly to live the rest of her life with Sirius, but it could wait. She wouldn’t feel right, having Sirius pay for everything. But then she knew that if she went to live with the Malfoys, they would eventually force her to serve Voldemort. Sighing, she knew she would rather be dead.

“Sirius...” she said, her heart in her eyes. Sirius smiled.

“Just say you will, Heather. You did before!”

“I wasn’t thinking about the money then. I was just going with what my heart wanted!”

“Then go with it now. Listen, we’ll both get jobs, and you can help pay for some of the stuff, alright? You can buy the groceries or something...I don’t know! I don’t care either. Please, just say you will...” he said. Heather thought hard. Sirius then smiled. He bent down on one knee, and clasped his hands together. “Pleeeeeeeease!” he begged. Heather laughed at this.

Rolling her eyes at her own weakness, she nodded. “Alright, but I’m going to get a job. I can help,” she said firmly.

“YES!” Sirius said, punching the air, and standing up. He grabbed her in a rib-cracking hug until she could barely breathe.

“Get off me you oaf!” she laughed. He obliged, but then his gaze turned to something just behind her. His smile softened. Heather turned around to see Andromeda smiling knowingly at them.

“It was good to see you again, cousin,” she said to Sirius. Then to Heather she said, “Look, I’m sorry about how I treated you at first,” she said. “I see now that I was wrong about you completely.”

“No problem, a lot of people make that mistake,” she said, giving Sirius a knowing look. Sirius blushed. Clearing his throat, he spoke.

“Sooo...” he said. “Is it a boy or girl?” he said. Andromeda put a hand on her stomach, grinning happily. Heather saw the resemblance to Sirius’ sloppy grin.

“A girl,” Andromeda said proudly. Sirius laughed.

“Picked out a name yet?” he asked.

“Yes, but Tim doesn’t like it very much,” she said , talking about her husband with a fond laugh. “He wanted to name her a silly sounding Muggle name. I don’t quite remember what it was, but I like Nymphadora. Don’t you?” Sirius grinned, deciding not to point out how he would hate to be a child named Nymphadora. Then again, it might be better if he were a girl...

“It’s a very...long name,” he finally said. Andromeda laughed.

“And mine isn't?” she asked, raising an eyebrow.

“Hey, you know you’ll always be Andy to me,” he said, using her old, much shorter, and much hated nickname. Rolling her eyes, Andromeda hugged him.

“Well, I better be off. Good luck,” she said. Then, to Heather’s surprise, she hugged her too. Before letting go she whispered into her ear, “You’re both very lucky. Take care of each other.”

“Thanks,” Heather muttered. Andromeda nodded, and then walked away, swaying slightly.

~~

The next few days passed by quickly, and were rather tearful. Students were saying their goodbyes, knowing they would most likely never see one another again. Heather, on the other hand, was looking forwards to the end. All the friends she had made, were apparently going to be within close contact. She and Sirius would be living practically next door to Lily and James. Remus and Peter promised they would visit often. Alice and Frank, however, weren’t quite sure where they would be living yet, so Heather wasn’t sure how often they would see them. Sara Thomas would be moving back with her parents, who, within the next few months, would be moving to Australia. As for everybody else, Heather didn’t really care. She wasn’t sure, but thought that Alex was going to live with Peter...who lived with his parents. The only true event, and Heather wouldn’t exactly call it an event was that she had the strangest vision yet.

She had just gotten out of the girl’s bathroom, and was walking back up to the common room. She felt light-headed. She froze.

“Uh-oh...” she whispered, thinking she was about to pass out like she always did. Predicting this, she decided to save herself some pain by sitting down on the floor. She tried to control her breathing, keeping it deep and even. But then she was somewhere else.

She was standing on a porch somewhere. She looked around, and saw somebody sitting on a chair, drinking a steaming cup of tea, and smiling to herself. She saw that it was herself! She nearly gasped. She watched then as her own eyes widened. Her future-self was staring at something. Heather craned her neck to see, and nearly fell over when she did see it. It was a little man with bright blue hair! He also had vivid prange eyes! Her amazement was so deep, that she wasn’t even listening to what she was saying to the little man. No...she thought. This isn’t real. This isn’t going to happen! This must not be a vision! She thought to herself. This is just a weird day dream... and as those thought formed into her head, she forced herself back to reality. She was quite amazed as she did this. She had never been able to control when she left a vision before! But then, she reminded herself, that couldn’t be a vision! That must have just been a dream...So for the rest of the time at Hogwarts, she never mentioned it to anybody. Soon it was forgotten, and more important problems plagued her. Problems like Lucius.

As was inevitable, the last day was a fountain of crying people, hugging and wishing everybody a wonderful rest-of-their-life. Heather, however, did little of this, and in fact spent most of the day with Sirius. But, as she knew she would, on her way to the Common Room, she was met by a most unwelcome person.

“Well, well. I see you’re not socializing much,” Lucius said snidely, blocking her way. Heather tried to go around him in the narrow hall, but Lucius stuck out his arms.

“All of my friends are going to be within walking distance. There is no need to say goodbye to them,” she said. “Now move.”

“Oh, and where do you think you’re going to be living where that will happen?” he said.

“I’m not coming home with you,” she said firmly. Lucius gave a harsh laugh. “Move!”

“I’m, afraid you are,” he said, then lowered his voice to a whisper. “And once you’re in my house, you know my father will make you a Death Eater.”

“I don’t think you heard me, Lucius. I’m not coming to live with you and your demented family!” she yelled in his face.

“Are you forgetting that we share the same family?” he asked, incensed. “And besides, where do you think you could possibly live? Are you going to live on the streets, Heather? In the orphanage, perhaps? We won’t pay for it anymore.”

“No. I hate to disappoint you. I’m going to be living with Sirius,” she said, smiling cooly.

“WHAT?!” he asked in outrage. “That traitor! Why don’t you go live with his brother instead!? He has his priorities in check! He knows what is right!”

Heather froze and walked towards Lucius, her eyes ablaze. She moved so that her face was inches from his. For the first time ever, Lucius backed away from her, looking alarmed. “Do you know where his loyalty got him, Lucius? Do you know what his devotion to Lord Voldemort ended with?”

Lucius said nothing.

“He’s dead, dear cousin. Dead. And I can’t wait to see you in his place. I can’t wait to see the rest of your disgusting family in his place. You’re all going to rot under this man’s thumb. For my whole life, your last name has haunted me. Not anymore. I’m through with it. I hope you enjoy what little happiness you have left, because it isn’t going to last long. You’re going to live the rest of your life on eggshells, knowing that one tiny little mess up will be your downfall. One little mistake, and Voldemort will kill you.” Heather stopped, watching his face closely. He said nothing, only stared in shock and fear. “You know this, don’t you,” she said, in a deadly whisper. Lucius looked completely flustered.

“I do,” he said. Looking at her, with dawning realization. “But if I didn’t join...my father would have killed me anyways.”

“Then don’t do this to me, Lucius. You know how it feels. I know you’re not a good person. You have a heart as black as sin. I also know that you only do something if there is something in it for you,” Heather said calmly. “But you, too, are different from the other Malfoys.”

“I am not!’ he said defiantly. Heather nodded.

“Unlike your father, and your mother, you still know the difference between right and wrong. You need to, so that you can make sure you’re doing the wrong and not the right. But, I believe, that once you’re older, you’ll forget right and wrong, until only wrong exists. Everything else is not right, but stupidity.”

Lucius only stared at her in bewilderment. It was his silence that made Heather continue. “Try right for once, Lucius. Just try it.”

“No.”

“Are you a coward? Will you spend your whole life running to keep up with your father? Or will you be your own kind of bad guy? Do your own wrong! Show your father that you make up your own mind.”

“What do you want me to do?” he said, his eyes now filled with something other than hatred. It amazed Heather.

“Leave me alone. Stop trying to make me a Death Eater,” she said, looking earnestly up at him. Lucius looked around, then back at her. He seemed to be thinking. He was his own kind of person. He wasn’t just a puppet for his father!

“Fine. Live your life with Black,” he said. Heather smiled.

“Now, how was that?” she asked. Lucius grinned too.

“Terrible. Absolutely disgusting. I don’t see why on Earth anybody would want to be nice,” he said. Heather nodded. After a few minutes, Lucius thought for a second. He realized Heather had just gained his respect. Nobody had ever dared yell in his face like that before. He sniffed. “My father will find you.”

“Not if you don’t tell him where I am,” Heather pointed out. There was an eternity in which Heather and Lucius stared at each other. Finally Lucius let out a slimy laugh. “Is that too difficult for a snake like you to handle?”

“You’re a Malfoy, right down to the bone,” he said. “Nobody else could hurt my feelings so bad,” he said sarcastically. “Alright. I have no clue where you’re living. But just so you know, my father doesn’t need me to find you. He’ll find you now matter what. Remember that when you’re all happy with your perfect little boyfriend.”

“No problem. Now, you remember something for me,” she said, smiling wickedly.

“What?”

“I hate you,” she said. He nodded.

“Good.” And without another word, he walked away. Heather just stood there, feeling winded. She leaned against the wall, closing her eyes.

“That was bloody brilliant,” somebody said. Heather saw Sirius putting his wand away, walking towards her. “For a second I thought I was going to have to jinx the slime-ball.”

“Well, at least now he’ll leave us alone,” she said, smiling. Sirius stood right in front of her. He smiled proudly.

“Yeah...he will. But what about his father?” she said, looking slightly troubled.

“We’ll deal with that if and when it comes,” he said assuredly. There was a silence, and then he said, quite softly, “You’re simply amazing.” She laughed.

“Did you see the look on his face? I thought he was going to wet his pants for a second there,” she said, grinning. Sirius took her hand, and pulled her against him. He wrapped his arms around her waist, and brought her up to him, lifting her off the ground. Heather gave a little gasp of surprise, but it was smothered by Sirius’ lips. She grinned through the kiss, bring her own hands up to run her fingers through his wild black hair.

“Do you think anybody is in the dorms?” Sirius asked, through the kiss.

“Doubt it,” Heather said breathlessly. Sirius gave a dog-like growl.

“Good,” he said, and then started carrying her down the hallway. She wrapped her legs around him, attempting to get closer. Laughing slightly, Sirius allowed his hands to wander. Heather giggled in surprise, but then moved her own hand down...down...

“Ahem!” came a sharp voice. They both leapt in fright, causing Sirius to almost drop Heather. They looked around, and saw, to their horror, Professor McGonagall. Sirius quickly set Heather down gently. Heather straightened her skirt, while Sirius ran a hand through his hair to tidy it.

“Yes, Professor?” Heather said, trying her hardest not to smile. McGonagall looked rather flustered.

“Is there not enough floor that Mr. Black must carry you?” she asked, her lips twitching slightly. Sirius wasn’t sure if she was really really angry, or amused. Heather blushed.

“Well...it’s just so dirty,” Sirius said, also holding back a laugh. McGonagall looked skeptically at the floor.

“Too true,” she said. “I wonder, if you are aware that there is a feast being held in precisely five minutes down in the Great Hall?” Sirius looked astonished at his watch.

“We were just heading that way...” Heather said.

“I see...” McGonagall said, walking toward them. “Then perhaps I can help you two by explaining that the Great Hall is that way,” she said, pointing a long, bony finger in the opposite direction. There was an awkward, rather nervous silence in which Sirius grinned sheepishly.

“Have I mentioned how wonderful you’re looking today?” he said. At this, McGonagall finally broke out into a small, amused smile.

“I don’t think you have, but I do think that perhaps you had better get going before I decide to postpone the last day of school, just so I can give you detention,” she said, shaking her head. Heather laughed.

“Thanks, Professor,” she said. Sirius grinned, and grabbed Heather’s hand, pulling her in the direction of the feast.

~~

Remus looked at her shyly. Candy grinned, for once, she was at a loss for words. “Candy...” Remus began.

“Mmm?”

“Well, I just wanted to thank you,” he said. “You’re one of the best friends I’ve ever had.”

Candy actually blushed, something Remus had never seen her do. “You too.”

“Look, I really like you, but...it would never have worked out...I’m a...well, you know,” he said, looking down at the ground. Candy laughed.

“I know. I never expected that kind of relationship. I wanted to be your friend, and now I am,” she said.

“You do know that if I could...” he said broke off, looking at the floor. Candy put a finger under his chin, and forced him to look at her.

“I know, Remus,” she said softly, and then, without warning, she stood up on her toes and gave him a soft, sweet kiss. Remus was alarmed, but joined in, pressing his lips to hers tightly. When they finished, Candy smiled. “Promise to write me?”

“Every day,” he said. Candy smiled, and then, hand in hand, they went to their last dinner together.

A/N: Well, as I'm sure you all noticed, this was more of a wrap-up chapter. It signifies the end of the first part of the story. They are finished with Hogwarts now, and the story is going to follow them into the rest of their lives, which are a little darker and more depressing than the others. So, not much to say on this one, except that I hope you liked the bit with Lucius, I had a lot of fun writing it. It was a rare instance where I actually liked him! Well...not all the way, but more than usual! Lol. Anyways, quite reading this and get reviewing!

Chapter 27: The Power of Silence
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Chapter Twenty-Seven~*~The Power of Silence


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ONE YEAR LATER~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
1979

Heather and Sirius hurried along the gravel driveway, panting and out of breath. Sirius grinned widely as he saw the large, haphazard building come into view.

“Finally!” Heather gasped, stopping and laying her hands on her knees.

“Oh, come on,” Sirius said, also winded. “It’s not that bad! Lily and James had to do twice this in Auror training!”

“Frank said it was easy!” Heather said, smiling. “Or at least, he said he and Alice had no problems,” she said. Sirius shrugged.

“Come on, we’re going to be even later,” Sirius said, and they ran even faster toward the old hotel.

“I still,” she gave a pant, “don’t understand why,” she clutched her side, “why the apparition point needs,” she gasped again, “to be so....far away!”

“Safety!” Sirius said. They decided not to talk the rest of the way, saving their breath. As they approached the steps, they slowed. Heather looked up at the creaky wooden sign. On it was carved;

Garlock Hotel
Welcome


Heather sighed, and at the urging of Sirius, went through the door he held open. She didn’t understand why this meeting had to be on such short notice. Normally Dumbledore told The Order when to be when and where way ahead of time. Nothing went unplanned. Heather passed the old, unoccupied wooden desk with haste, and up rickety stairs. Up and up they wound. Five long staircases, to be exact. As they both reached the landing of the last one, Sirius leaned against the wall.

“This meeting better be a good one,” Sirius said. Heather, too out of breath to speak, simply nodded. “Come on, the door is right here,” he said, walking over. He ticked off numbers in his head. 107, 108, 109...111. He grinned. 110 was missing. Heather came to stand beside him. She closed her eyes, and remembered the location. Garlock Hotel, room 110. She opened them again, and no door appeared. Not at all surprised, she looked up in time to see a trap door appearing overhead, with the numbers 110 carved into it.

“You first,” Heather said, grinning. Sirius shook his head.

“Ladies first,” he insisted. Heather pursed her lips.

“Just don’t throw me through, like the last time, okay?” she said with a smirk. Sirius grinned devilishly. “I’m serious!” she said firmly.

“No, I am!” he said indignantly, crossing his arms. Heather rolled her eyes.

“You’re too funny,” she said sarcastically. “Alright, we’re already late. Just...”

“Alright, I won’t,” he said softly. Heather stared into his eyes for a second, and Sirius wanted nothing more than to kiss her right there. In fact, he might have, if a cheery voice hadn’t interrupted.

“Did you two forget the levitation spell or something?” The two looked up to see James poking his head down. Sirius rolled his eyes.

“Hey, James,” he said. “Wonderful timing,” he added lamely.

“I know!” James said with enthusiasm. Sirius pulled out his wand.

“Move, or else I’m going to smash your face in with Heather,” he said with a wink at her.

“Don’t you dare!” Heather said, laughing. In seconds, however, she was levitated through the hole in the ceiling. She turned and levitated Sirius up after her. They looked around, and an odd feeling of being home rushed over them. They stood in a brightly lit, large room. It was full of rich wooden objects, and was not at all what one would have expected from the dingy old hotel below them. Though, as Sirius and Heather had been told, nobody had known about this room for about seventy years. Only Dumbledore remembered it, and knew it would be perfect. The large room held a small group of people, as usual.

“Hey guys!” Alice said, running up to them. She gave Heather a hug, and was closely followed by Lily and Frank. “It’s been a long time!” she said. Heather laughed.

“Alice, the last meeting was only a month ago...” she said. Alice grinned sheepishly. Frank came to stand behind her.

“So, what do you reckon we’re here for?” Lily asked, grinning. “And how come Dumbledore invited Alastor?” she asked nervously, eyeing Alastor Moody, who was sitting alone in the corner, watching them with dark brown eyes.

“I don’t know,” Heather said, laughing at Lily’s dislike of Moody.

“He’s not that bad,” James said jovially.

“You like everybody,” Lily said rolling her eyes fondly. “Nothing makes you unhappy!”

“And that’s a bad thing? Just because I’m a generally happy person doesn’t mean anything!” he said indignantly. Lily shook her head, and they all laughed.

“I just don’t understand you sometimes...” she said with a small grin.

“What don’t you understand?” a nervous voice said from behind them. They turned to see Peter, closely followed by Remus.

“Hey you two!” Heather said, embracing Remus friendly. She merely smiled at Peter, who oddly smiled back.

“I see you were able to make it, away from the old ball-and-chain,” Sirius muttered quietly so that only Heather heard. She let out a laugh, and everybody stared at her. She quickly changed it into a hacking cough, turning bright red. Then she glared at Sirius for making her look like an idiot in front of everybody. Sirius stuck out his tongue.

“So, how has the marriage thing been going?” he said, looking at Lily and James and Alice and Frank.

“Horrible!” they all said at once, jokingly. Then they all burst out laughing, hugging each other.

“Ahem, I hate to break up what is surely a much needed reunion, but I have important news that I must tell you all,” said Dumbledore, coming from out of the trap door. They all greeted him with smiles, but the smiles were quickly ripped viciously from their faces as another person stepped up after Dumbledore.

“SNAPE?!” James roared, whipping out his wand. So did everybody else in the room, other than Dumbledore and Moody.

“James,” Dumbledore said reprovingly.

“He’s a Death Eater!” Heather roared, shaking with rage. She hated Snape, and with good reason. Sirius remembered what he had done to Heather last year, and his anger grew. He gripped his wand even tighter.

“I’ve been waiting, Snape. I’m going to...” Sirius started, but Dumbledore stopped him.

“That is enough!” he said loudly. Everybody stopped, staring at Dumbledore. It was a rare thing to hear him raise his voice. Moody stood up, and walked over to the glaring Snape.

“I think you were right, Albus,” Moody said, raising a gnarled brow.

“They simply don’t understand, Alastor,” Dumbledore said calmly. And then to everybody else he said, “please sit,” and pointed to the squishy armchairs that had been placed on the sides of the room. They all went to sit down, and Heather exchanged tense looks with Sirius.

“What’s going on, Professor?” Lily asked, her eyes narrowed. Dumbledore actually smiled.

“Lily, it’s been nearly a year. You don’t have to call me Professor. You never did, come to think of it. I have many names for a reason! Pick one, though I would prefer Albus to Wulfric, Percival or Brian." There were a few chuckles. “Now, to business...” he said, and sat down as well. “I have just received information that Voldemort knows a part of The Prophesy, and has since I heard it in the Hog’s Head. He is waiting...watching,” he said to an empty silence.

“What’s The Prophesy?” said a lone voice. Guilt clouded everybody’s vision. “What’s The Prophesy?” Remus repeated to the deadly quiet room. Dumbledore raised his brow, and Alastor looked questioningly at him.

“You...don’t know?” Dumbledore said, in a rare moment of surprise. “You didn’t inform him of The Prophesy?” he asked the others. They all exchanged guilty looks. Remus looked around, astonished.

“Am I the only one that doesn’t know?” he demanded, hurt. Nobody spoke. “Answer me!” he practically yelled. Still silence.

“It might not even apply to us...” James attempted. But Remus cut through him.

“But whatever it is, it’s obviously something that Voldemort can’t know, but everybody but me can!” he said, standing up in anger.

“Remus...” Sirius said, standing as well.

“No, I know what it is...you don’t trust me. You haven’t trusted me since I helped Heather cheat on you. I know that,” he spat angrily.

“That’s not true,” Sirius said firmly.

“‘Oh, don’t tell Remus, he’s a Werewolf!’” Remus said cuttingly, mocking them all. Lily stood up, walking towards Remus, whose eyes were sparkling.

“Remus, you don’t understand! It wasn’t like that!” Lily said, her eyes also wet with tears.

“Lily, I’ve lived my whole life an outcast. I’m a friggin’ Werewolf! How could I not?! Everybody thought I was untrustworthy, everybody was afraid of me, even my own father...until I met you guys. I guess it was just my hopeful imagination. I wanted so badly to be accepted, and now, after years of a false friendship, I realize I’ve just been being lied to,” he said sharply. He glared at them, shaking with the hurt roiling around inside him.

“Well, it’s not as if you didn’t keep things from us!” Peter reminded. Everybody went silent. “You’ve never told us the truth! Why do you live with your grandparents!” he said, his voice getting nasally with excitement. Remus turned slowly to Peter, and Dumbledore wondered if he should step in, or let them work it out on their own. Remus let a tear slip down his face.

“You want to know the truth?” he said softly. Peter looked taken aback. Remus? Crying? He opened his mouth, but then shut it, unsure. “Fine,” he said venomously. “Not long after I got bit, my father came home drunk, as usual,” he said. Everybody exchanged shocked looks, but nothing could have prepared them for his next agonized words. “He killed my mother.”

Silence.

“Happy now?” he practically sobbed.

Nobody moved or made a sound. He snorted in disgust. “Sorry, Dumbledore,” he said, and with a last disgusted look at his ‘friends,’ he left.




A/N: This was a very difficult chapter to write. Not only was it picking up from a year from now, but it involved quite a lot of drama. I wanted to make sure I got all the information in there without losing the plot. I realize that this chapter was short, but I didn't want to get into the next part of the story quite yet. So you'll just have to wait for the next chapter, in which characters you might have forgotten about show up. Can you guess who they might be? Also... a little...well alot...of action in the next chapter, so you can look forward to it=) Please review!

Chapter 28: The Smile of a Rock
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Chapter Twenty-Eight~*~The Smile of a Rock


Heather sat frozen, staring at the floor in horror. The trap door slammed shut as Remus left. Nobody made a sound. It was as if the air had suddenly thickened to such a state where it was impossible for anybody to move. Snape looked bored, and slightly pleased. Moody was looking around at them all warily, as if waiting to see if one of them would leap up in shock and start attacking them all. Only Dumbledore seemed strong enough to wade through the cold hard silence to find his voice.

“I would like to say that this will have to conclude our meeting for today, But I can not. I have yet to explain the presence of Severus Snape,” Dumbledore said, his voice scratchy and laden with disappointment. They all looked up at Snape, their hearts on their sleeves, their hatred of him thoroughly showing through. “The only reason that we have this information about Voldemort, is because of Snape. He came to me late last night and informed me that Voldemort was watching us carefully, planning his next move. I need hardly explain that this is a reason why I trust him enough to induce him into The Order.”

Complete silence still reigned, yet this new silence was much louder than before. “So, you’re saying that just because he told you that Voldemort knew about The Prophesy, you’re going to let him into The Order?!” James said.

“Don’t you understand, idiot boy?” Moody said, speaking directly to him. James looked startled, having only spoken to the man twice before, and already he had been called an idiot. “This Prophesy is the most important thing you will know in your entire life. This Prophesy will determine the outcome of the Dark Lord Voldemort! This is not some little useless piece of information! Anything that has anything to do with The Prophesy is highly valuable,” Moody said. James looked chastened.

“So...what do we do?” Heather asked, looking straight at Dumbledore, who sighed.

“We wait, Heather. We wait,” he said sadly. Walking over to them, he bowed his head in sadness. “I hope I do not need to explain my great disappointment in you all,” he whispered. Everybody averted their eyes. Heather’s heart was wrung dry, the guilt squeezing all feeling from it. “You may have lost a very good friend.”

Without another word to one another, everybody left. Not moving quickly, but slowly, sluggishly. The weight of their wrong-doing attempting to hold them firmly in one place. Only when they had reached the Apparition point did they even acknowledge each other’s presence.

“See you,” James said forlornly, holding Lily’s hand. In seconds, they were gone. Alice gave a tiny nod to Sirius and Heather, and departed with Frank. Peter, who looked the least upset of the group, actually gave a smile and said, “Talk to you guys later!” before departing sloppily. Now only Sirius and Heather were left. They looked at each other, and shook their heads.

“Let’s talk about it at home,” Sirius said, not wanting to discuss it standing in the middle of this forest. Heather nodded her agreement, and both disappeared as suddenly as if they had never been there at all.

Heather barely had time to blink before she was surrounded by the familiar smell and feel of her own home. Looking around at the small, one-story house, she felt heartened. It was a very nice, comfortable little house. She was currently standing in the living room, her favorite room. The walls were colored a dark blue, with a light, cream colored border, and bright yellow coreopsis flowers painted on by the best of artists. Of course, the paint that had been used was magic, so that when you turned out the lights, the flowers turned into silvery Moonflowers.

Giving a slight sigh, she sank onto one of the squashy white couches. Sirius, seeing her distress, sat down beside her. He put his arm around her, and she snuggled closer.

“What have we done?” she whispered. Sirius closed his eyes. What had they done? It seemed like they had been the worst friends possible. What ever happened to them? The Marauders were supposed to share everything! And now look at him, he had plotted with everybody else to keep Remus in the dark. True, he wasn’t sure why, but he knew that it certainly wasn’t because he was a Werewolf. In fact, he respected Remus because he was a Werewolf! Knowing that he had been quiet for much too long, he gave a sigh.

“I’m sure he’ll forgive us in the end,” he said, deciding not to answer her original question, and explain exactly what they had done. To do that would be to explain that they had most likely just lost a very good friend.

“I’m not so sure about that...” she said sadly. “What time is it?” she whispered. Sirius looked at his watch and frowned.

“It’s nearly four,” he said, looking out at the scolding mid-day sun. Heather groaned. That meant Sirius had to leave for work in an hour. It was tough these days. Heather and Sirius had opposite schedules, meaning that they rarely got to spend time with each other. Heather worked from seven in the morning to three in the afternoon. She had taken off today, due to the meeting with The Order. But still, on normal days, after she came home at three, she only had two hours to spend with Sirius before he left for work at five. And normally he didn’t get back until midnight. He was on the Magical Law Enforcement Squad, and he loved it. Heather worked at St. Mungo’s and was a Healer, a job which she enjoyed also. But both enjoyed each other’s company more than any job.

“What do you want for dinner?” Heather asked dismally. Sirius noticed her tone, and looked thoughtful. He had never taken a day off from his job...

“How about we go somewhere fancy tonight?” he asked, his voice getting slick with charm. Heather looked up at him, bumping the top of her head on his chin. He grinned as her surprised face came into view.

“We don’t have time! You still have work today,” she said sadly. He shrugged.

“I don’t know about you, but I’ve been feeling really sick lately,” he said, a devilish grin firmly in place. Heather caught on and smiled in delight.

“Come to think of it,” she said slowly, looking him over seductively. “You do look a little pale...” He nodded.

“I thought so,” he said, getting up. A rakish grin still on his face, he walked over to the fireplace. Heather started down the hall to get ready, and as she did so, she heard Sirius coughing and spluttering quite convincingly. He was talking raspily about his horrible condition, and how so far, not even Heather, who was a Healer, could explain to him his illness. Controlling the urge to burst out laughing, she hurried along. Her heart was fluttering, for a reason she had never talked to anybody about. She felt selfish for thinking it, but she was hoping that tonight would be the night.... She and Sirius had lived together for a little over a year.... One of these days...she hoped he would ask her to marry him. It had been all she had been thinking about lately, and she felt extremely guilty about it...but at the same time...not. Taking a deep breath, she hurried into their bedroom. She saw her cat, Tyde, who was looking rather bored, laying on the bed. Heather smiled.

“Hello Tyde, you look happy,” she said sarcastically. The cat simply glared at her, blinking slowly. She picked up the fluffy white mass and set him on her lap. Tyde immediately stood and began rubbing his head against her hand, begging for attention. Heather laughed. She sat for a few minutes, stroking the cat, then stood up. She went to her closet, and brought out a sleek black dress that fell to about mid-calf. She quickly slipped it on, and went to look at herself in the mirror. She smiled, satisfied with the woman looking back at her. She looked quite nice, if she did say so herself, but there was something missing. She picked up her wand, and waved it. Her mass of rich brown curls quickly arranged themselves into a long french-braid down her back. A few wisps framed her face nicely, and she slipped on some earrings.

“What do you think?” she said, looking at Tyde, who merely sat there, looking rather perky now. “I’ll take your silence as a yes,” she said. The she turned back and closed the closet. But when next she looked back at the bed, she nearly screamed in fright. A terrified looking House-Elf was sitting on the bed. “Dobby...?” she said uncertainly. He was crying, and looking horribly upset. She hurried to him, sitting beside him. “What’s the matter?”

He let out a sob. “Miss Heather is always so nice to Dobby,” he said, wheezing. “I’m sorry, Miss, but they is my orders...” he wailed. Heather frowned, taking his hand. He jerked it back as if burnt.

“What are you talking about?” she said softly. “Just tell me what’s the matter. We can...” but she broke off as Dobby began speaking again. But it didn’t sound like he was talking to her. She saw he had something in his hand, and it looked like a mirror. She recognized it as a two-way mirror. “Dobby?”

“Yes, Master...she is...here...” he sobbed, and then with a loud ‘crack’ and a snap of his fingers, Dobby’s anguished form vanished. Then, almost immediately afterward, another smaller popping noise followed. Heather saw two terrifying looking men standing before her. Damien Malfoy and another she recognized only from the Daily Prophet. It was Walden Macnair. Damien’s cool, collected manner filled the entire room. His back was tense and so straight Heather thought it might crack. Slowly, a menacing smile cut its way across his smooth, pale face. The end result was that of an ugly, evil glare that told Heather she would do what this man said or die. Heather, however, would rather die than become this man’s puppet, like her cousin. She started to run to the door, but Macnair caught her around the middle. She opened her mouth to yell for Sirius, but a large, cold-as-ice hand covered her mouth.

Heather fought with all of her strength, but the fact was that Macnair was a towering man with enough strength to make a bull run away in fright. She struggled to breath, for with the combination of having his hand over her mouth, and his arms crushing her against him, she was having extreme difficulties. She clawed at his forearms, drawing blood, but he quickly snatched both of her wrists in a large hand. Her heart was rapidly beating a hole in her chest, and both men knew it.

“Hello there,” Damien said smoothly, watching her struggle with Macnair. Heather let out a muffled yelp, as she was slammed against the wall. She felt as if all the bones in her wrists were being crushed as Macnair pulled her arms behind her and, with his wand, created a rope to bind them. Spinning her back to face him, and still keeping a firm hand over her mouth, he smiled as Damien closed the door to their room. Heather’s eyes were now watering with pain and terror, as the man roughly ripped her from the wall and picked her small frame up. He sat down on the bed, and pulled her into his lap like a child, holding her still.

“Now,” Damian said calmly, as Heather couldn’t move an inch. “I think you know why we’re here.” Heather only glared. “You are going to be very useful to me. Not only are you close to Dumbledore, but you are a Malfoy, which means you would make the perfect spy.” Heather shook her head viciously. Damien nodded to Macnair, and the grip over her mouth tightened as his free hand grasped her throat, squeezing hard. “That’s not the answer I want. Now, I’m giving you one, last chance. Spy for us...” Heather said nothing, and acted like she was thinking it over.

Damien saw this and smiled, encouraged. “Macnair is going to take his hand off your mouth, and you are going to answer me. If you scream for Sirius, I will kill him before he even enters the room.” Heather’s eyes widened in fear. His hand was lifted off her mouth. She did the only thing she could think of. She spat in Macnair’s face. He was so disgusted that he dropped her. She quickly ran to the door, and turned around, trying to open the door with her tied hands. But it was locked.

“Damn it,” she muttered. She wanted so badly to yell for Sirius, but knew that Damien would kill him.

“I didn’t want to have to resort to this,” he muttered. Raising his wand, he said, “Silencio.” Heather couldn’t speak at all. She was forcibly reminded of last year, when Snape had put that exact same spell on her. “Have you ever felt the Cruciotus Curse?” he asked, advancing on her. She backed up away from him, but with a loud hissing noise, Tyde ran under her feet, tripping her. She fell hard, and looked up at the two men who were now towering menacingly over her, all the hatred she could muster forced into her unbroken gaze. She breathed deeply. And to think, Sirius was just down the hallway, oblivious. Closing her eyes, she waited for the spell to fall. But all she heard was a loud knock.

“Heather, how long does it take to get ready?!” Sirius’ exasperated voice came from right outside the door. Damien looked daggers at the door. He wanted to kill Black, but knew that if he did that, he would have no leverage against Heather. Instead, he walked over to the girl and picked her up off the ground with practiced ease. He was used to being a bully. Holding her tightly, so that she could barely breath, he took silencing charm off her.

“Get rid of him,” he whispered, his smooth voice coated with venom. Heather threw the door a terrified look, swallowing hard.

“Uhh...Sirius. I’m...still getting ready,” she said, her voice shaking. Sirius noticed the tremor in her voice immediately, and stiffened. Was something wrong? He decided to test it.

“Ok, I was thinking of seeing if we could find a place where the Blood Bats are playing. Do you like them?” he asked tentatively.

Heather nearly smiled in relief. It was his way of asking if she was alright. “Umm...no. I hate the Blood Bats,” she said loudly and firmly. Damien, who didn’t know what was going on, looked impatient while Macnair looked eager. But outside, Sirius was already worried. Heather’s favorite band was the Blood Bats. She was trying to tell him that something was wrong.... Slowly, he bent down, and looked under the door. He saw three sets of feet. Heather’s, and somebody much larger than her, who seemed to be holding her a few inches off the floor. Then standing beside them, were another pair. He felt rage pulsing through his veins, and his eyes narrowed to dark slits.

Sincerely hoping that Sirius had gotten the message, she looked back at Damien, who, after hearing nothing, decided Sirius must have left. He threw Heather back to the ground, where she landed in a pained heap.

“Silencio,” he said again, and Heather’s voice died in her throat. He walked to her and looked enraged. “What do I have to do?!” he whispered furiously. He kicked her around the middle. Heather felt as if she were going to throw up, and all the air was knocked from her lungs. Vaguely she noticed that her skirt was riding up her thighs, and struggled to cover herself. Damien noticed and laughed. “So that’s what scares you?” he said, grinning. “I see...well, I think we can work this then. Macnair,” he said, nodding to the man. Macnair knelt down beside her, and looked fixedly at the exposed thigh.

“Get away,” Heather mouthed, but nothing came out. What was he doing?!

“Now, then,” he said, laying a finger on her hip. She struggled to get away, but the finger suddenly turned into a clenched hand, stopping her escape. “We’re going to play a little game,” he said, practically crawling on top of her, his hand still resting on her thigh. She was terrified. “The rules are, you agree to spy for us, or we have a little fun...” he broke off, his hand moving towards the inside of her leg, slowly moving upwards. Heather let a tear slip down her face, praying Sirius would come soon. “Either way, I win,” he said with a laugh, and with his free hand, he slipped off one of the shoulders of her dress off. “You are a pretty thing,” he whispered, his mouth coming to rest on one side of her neck.


Heather thought she would pass out in misery. It was as if she was reliving the memory of last year all over again. She faintly heard Damien laughing in the background. “You’re scared...I can tell,” he murmured, watching her tear-stained face. “Now then,” he said, as he started chewing on her lower lip. “What if I were to tell you,” he said, knowing that if he kept this up, she would agree. “That if you don’t join me,” he slowly began to move his hand up...up...“I will ensure that you never want Black in your bed again?” he finished, watching her face as he moved his thumb around in disgusting circles on her thigh.

“I WOULD TELL YOU TO GO TO HELL!” Sirius screamed, grabbing Macnair around the throat and lifting him off her. Damien looked utterly bewildered, and then went to join the fight. Sirius slammed his fist repeatedly into Macnair’s deserving face, yelling oaths and curses. He pulled out his wand, and yelled as many spells as he could think of. Soon Macnair was on the ground, panting heavily. Damien, however, had snuck up behind Sirius. Heather tried to warn him, but her traitorous lips said nothing. No voice could be heard. Damien hit Sirius hard in the back of the head with a disarming spell, sending him flying forward. His wand flew out of his hand, and he lay on the floor for a few seconds, collecting himself. It was those few seconds, however, that gave Damien the upper hand.

“CRUCIO!” he screamed in fury. Sirius yelled and writhed, his body twisting in all different directions. Heather saw Macnair starting to move. He stood up, and picked up his wand. Heather’s ears heard only Sirius’ agonized screams. She yelled in silent horror for Damien to stop, but to no avail. She saw that Macnair was about to add his own spell, giving Sirius a double-dose. She wouldn’t let that happen, however. She stood up, and just as Macnair’s lips formed the spell, she slammed into his arm, causing him to miss and hit Damien instead.

Damien at first didn’t realize why he was in so much pain, but after a few split-seconds, he didn’t care, as the spell took hold. It took Macnair a while to realize that Sirius had stopped yelling, and it was Damien that was now on the ground, wriggling in agony. Heather rushed to Sirius, trying to free her hands.

Sirius looked up blurrily, and saw Heather’s face wrought with fear. She was trying to say something, but either his ears weren’t working correctly, which he could have easily believed, or Heather had been put under a silencing spell. He then saw that Macnair was torturing Damien, and realized what Heather must have done. He took a deep breath, and tried to steady his vision. Sitting up, with his head pounding, he looked around. He saw his wand and snatched it up. He grabbed Heather’s arm, and as he stood up, brought her with him, pulling her against him for support.

“Give me a wand!” Heather was trying to say, but Sirius couldn’t hear her. “Let me free and give me a wand, I can help!” she said, getting frantic. Looking around, however, she saw that there was no time for that.

Sirius watched Macnair’s face as he realized what he was doing. He raised his own wand, and tried something he had never tried before. He had never wanted to try it before. He had never wanted to bring somebody excruciating pain before. But now, at the memory of Heather laying helpless beneath this man, he did. “CRUCIO!” he yelled, allowing the memory of Heather, tear-stained and terrified, to wash over him. He was filled with a rage as he had never felt. His eyes seemed to darken in color, and Macnair looked frightened. But, as Sirius’ wand wasn’t used to the spell, only a broken puff of bright yellow light flew across the room, to slam into Macnair’s head. He yelled out in a brief moment of pain, and blood trickled from his nose. “Damnit!” Sirius yelled, seeing that it hadn’t worked. Damien began laughing.

“Can’t even do the curse?” Damien said, standing, and giving Macnair a look that said that after this mission, he was in trouble. “Well, I think we’ve had enough of both of you. Black will die, and Heather will join. That’s that,” he said, raising his wand and pointing it at Sirius.

“No!” Heather mouthed, and went to stand in front of him.

“Get out of the way, idiot girl!” Macnair said, rolling his eyes and coming forward. He tried to physically move her, but before he got a chance, Sirius slammed his wand right into the man’s eye. Heather stared in horror, as the man dropped to the ground, pulling the wand out and sobbing in pain. “My eye! My eye!” he wailed. “I got to get it fixed!” he danced around, and it was really a pathetic sight to see, as blood oozed from the socket. “My eye!” he yelled once more, before he vanished. Damien stared in disbelief.

“The Dark Lord will hear of this,” he said softly, and then rounded once again on Heather and Sirius. “You will both die then. I’ve had enough of you, girl. You’re not worth it. I’ll find another spy!” With that he raised his wand. Sirius grabbed Heather’s hand behind her back, and pulled her into a kiss. There was no way they could get out of this one. The Avada Kedavra curse couldn’t be stopped, and Sirius would be dead before he got to his wand.

“I love you,” they both whispered. Damien let out a snort.

“You two really are disgusting,” he said. Then he opened his mouth to deliver the fatal curse. The two waited with baited breath, staring intensely at each other. It seemed to take an eternity for Damien to deliver the blow. In fact, they were still waiting...waiting. Sirius looked around at Damien, who was still standing there.

“Are you going to kill us or what?” he said, irritated. But, in response, Damien dropped to the ground. The two did a double-take. “Umm... yay?” Sirius said uncertainly, pulling Heather behind him protectively and walking forward. He picked up his bloody wand, and tapped Damien with his toe. “What the hell just happened?”

“I did,” said a morose voice from the corner, making them both jump. Sirius put his arm around Heather, his wand pointed at the corner. A tall, sleek figure stepped from the shadows, her wand out. Heather’s eyes popped out of her head. Cordelia?!

“What are you doing here?” Heather said, forgetting that she still couldn’t talk. She looked to Sirius, who had also forgotten. He jumped and quickly muttered the counter-curse. Then he untied her hands. As he did so, his heart broke. Her wrists were badly bruised. “Thanks,” she muttered hoarsely, still rather shaken. Sirius pulled her into a hug, feeling her entire body relaxing with relief. He closed his eyes, trying not to think about Macnair’s beefy hands on her. Remembering that Cordelia was still standing there, Heather quickly turned to her. She was looking at them reproachfully.

“That was fun,” she said with a very uncharacteristic snort. “I want to live my life, and not a life Damien picks out for me. And what did I do?” she said, seeing them test if he was still conscious. “Well...I killed him. I’ve done the world some good, at least,” she said, her long blonde hair waving slightly. “You won’t be hearing from the Death Eaters anymore, once they think that you’ve killed Damien. He’s one of the toughest Death Eaters there is...or was. You’re not worth it to them anymore,” she said waving her hand about casually.

“Uh...well, thanks,” Heather said, smiling. Then Cordelia looked at the dead body of her husband, and did something Heather had never known her to do; she smiled. It was the oddest thing Heather had ever seen. It was like having a rock smile at them; it was unnatural.

With a rather joyful nod, Cordelia pointed her wand at the body, and Damien disappeared. Smiling even wider now, she took a deep breath, and Disapperated. Heather and Sirius stared in shock for a few seconds, and then looked at each other. Sirius saw Heather’s face was still wet, and led her over to the bed.

“Are you alright?” he asked as she examined the floor.

“Thanks to you,” she muttered sadly. “I shouldn’t be here.”

Sirius thought this such a silly thing to say, that he actually laughed. Heather looked affronted. “You have no idea how wrong you are,” he said, pulling her close.

“But...I’ve caused you so much trouble! I almost got you killed tonight!” she said.

“And I would do it a hundred times over for you, Heather,” he said softly. “In fact, after seeing that brute on top of you, I enjoyed the fighting,” he said honestly. Any pain he could bring to somebody that tried to hurt her brought him great amounts of pleasure. But as the memory began to make him mad again, he decided not to think about it. “I’m just glad you’re alright,” he said earnestly. Heather laid down, and tried to put her hands behind her head, but the immense pain reminded her of the gorilla sized bruises on her wrists. Sirius saw her wince, and pulled her hands toward him. Anger broiled around inside him at the sight, and he wished he could have done more than just get Macnair in the eye.

“Careful,” Heather said, getting jumpy as his hands moved towards the bruises. Sirius’ touch, however seemed to make the throbbing stop, and all the pain ebbed.

“Can’t you do something to heal it?” he asked, his heart in his eyes. Heather nodded, biting her lip.

“There is some Essence of Murtlap in the bathroom,” she said starting to get up. But Sirius had already bounded off the bed. In seconds he was back. Heather stuck her wrists in the bowl of sloppy Murtlap, and immediately felt its effects. “Thanks,” she said, smiling. Sirius looked around the room, and saw, with a slight laugh, Tyde stick his furry white head out of the closet. He made an inquiring mewling sound. Heather laughed too.

“I don’t know what I would have done if Tyde wouldn’t have been there to hide in the closet,” she said, and they both started laughing. After awhile, Heather took her hands out of the bowl, and they both agreed to get some sleep. Heather groaned.

“What?” Sirius asked, concerned.

“I don’t want to go to work tomorrow,” she said, grinning at her own complaining. It was odd to hear herself complain, and a rare thing indeed.

“Well, that’s good,” he said, laying back on te bed.

“Why so?” she asked, confused. She laid back on him, and they snuggled closer.

“Because tomorrow is Saturday,” he said, kissing her forehead.

A/N: Alright, I've decided that, instead of notes at the ends of each chapter, I'm going to just put previews for the upcoming chapters. Let me know what you think of this change. Should I keep the notes, or should I just put previews?

Preview for chapter 29, "Surprise!": “Hello, Remus,” Lily said in false cheerfulness, standing up. Remus glared at her. She moved to give him a warm hug, but he moved out of her grasp sharply, causing her to almost fall over. James stood up in anger. Lily looked crushed.

“There is no need to treat her like that, she was only being nice,” James said, walking around the couch to stand beside her. Remus focused his gaze on James.

“Really? There is no reason at all?” he said, disgusted.


Chapter 29: Surprise!
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]




The night crept in softly, as a dog slowly stalking its prey, only to come on swiftly at the last possible moment. The sky leered, swirling its many dark colors about menacingly, promising depression and unhappiness. Just recently having gone through a full moon, Remus was feeling terrible. Add that to having what he had thought as friends revealing that they had been keeping secrets from him, and he might as well have died then and there from misery. He walked slowly down the side-walk, his hands in his shabby coat pockets. It’s not as if he had anywhere to go, except the hell-hole of an apartment that he had managed to scrape. If only he could find a job...other than the night janitor at the stupid muggle shop, Curly’s Frozen Custard. Letting out a pent up sigh, he allowed his self-pity to swallow him. He knew he was being an idiot, but he didn’t really care at the moment; it was the only thing he could afford.

Looking around him, he noticed how trees that normally waved merrily at normal witches and wizards now seemed to be glaring and throwing their leaves at him, proving that he didn’t belong in this world. He didn’t deserve to live among these happy, innocent people, people who didn’t turn into flesh-eating monstrosities once a month.

Things had only gone downhill after Remus had graduated Hogwarts. Now he had to deal with the full-moons by himself. Normally, he just locked himself in a kennel he had bought under the pretense that he had a very large dog. But being locked in a kennel with only himself to bite and scratch was far from enjoyable, and he winced even now as he thought of the large cuts and bruises that covered his body.

Only the small glint in his eyes showed who he could be, if he wasn’t a Werewolf. That tiny glint promised that he could be a great Healer, or a great Auror...if only he wasn’t a Werewolf. Slowly however, that tiny glint of hopefulness and all that was left of being young, was being smothered. He didn’t really notice it, but a part of him knew that if he didn’t save himself now, he would soon turn into the kind of person his father was.... At this thought, his heart kicked into high-gear. No. He would never be like that...never.

It started to rain as thunder leaped into a booming announcement. Lightening quickly followed, but it wasn’t long before Remus had reached his destination. He ran across the street to the Cauldron Bottom, a very dodgy bar that he found himself occupying every night recently.

Coming through the door, he saw that only a few people, and a vampire, were sitting at different tables, some playing pool, other’s just watching and smoking. Remus averted his gaze, and made a beeline for the bar. He saw who was working tonight, and did a double-take.

“Aberforth?!” he said, sitting down on one of the stools. Aberforth jumped and spun around.

“Who knows me name? What the devil are ye...” but he stopped as he saw Remus, who couldn’t believe his eyes. Dumbledore’s brother worked at the Cauldron Bottom? He had met him in Order meetings only once, and had thought him quite a strange fellow. The only way he could tell that Albus Dumbledore and Aberforth Dumbledore were related was by their looks. Now, however, a resemblance could not easily be made. The man had small, watery blue eyes, much the color of Dumbledore’s, yet they had a mischievous sparkle to them that Dumbledore’s rarely possessed. Where as Dumbledore’s beard was always white and startlingly perfect, not a hair out of place, Aberforth’s was wiry and a darker, dirtier grey. He was also very short, barely able to look Remus in the eye. Dumbledore had to look down at most of his students, holding a posture that rivaled Professor McGonogall’s.

“What are you doing here? I didn’t know you worked at the...” Remus began, but the excitable man’s eyes widened, and the shadows under his eyes seemed to tighten.

“Shut yer trap! Do ye think I want the ‘ole town knowin’?” he said. Remus shook his head.

“Sorry. Since when have you worked here? Does Dumbledore know?” he asked, leaning in to whisper. Aberforth gave a snort, leaning heavily on the bar and throwing a towel over his shoulder.

“Do ye think me daft, boy?” he said, his eyes twinkling. “I wouldn’t tell Albus fer nothin’!” he said with a laugh. “He’s all perfect, and what-not,” he rolled his eyes. “Me parents died rubbin’ me face into that fact. Do ye really think me dumb enough to do somin’ like tha’?” he said.

Remus shook his head.

“That’s a boy,” Aberforth said with a very Dumbledore-like chuckle. Then he shook his head kindly. “I’ll ne’er understand, the daft birds...” he said. Remus stood for a few seconds, quite perplexed.

Since Aberforth didn’t seem like he was about to explain his odd comment, Remus spoke up. “Er...who don’t you understand?” Aberforth gave a small jump, as though he had forgotten Remus was there. Then he gave him a slightly mad look, before it vanished quickly into a look of fond remembrance.

“Well, me parents...” he said. “They always liked Albus more’n me. I was ne’re the best at me school subjects,” he admitted, setting his towel on the bar.

“Well, I’m sure that’s not true,” Remus said, his manners kicking into action. In truth, he wasn’t much surprised. Aberforth gave a chuckle.

“Well, now. Here’s a fella who not only looks worse’n me socks, but he’s also got his manners!” he said, and with that, he gave Remus a slap on the back, his eyes showing a slightly insane bemusement. Remus gave an uncomfortable laugh. It came out as more of a giggle, however, as he now was craving something to drink more than ever. “Well, I suppose I better get back to me job...so, what will ye have?” he asked, sitting up.

“Fire-Whiskey,” Remus said gruffly, feeling uncomfortable ordering something like that from somebody within The Order.

“Now, you been gettin’ on me about bein’ here. But, what about you, laddie?” he said, getting a very dusty, bright red bottle out of a cupboard. “You be the one drinkin’, not me!” he popped the cork loudly. Remus shrugged. He didn’t feel like going into details with this little man.

“Just, don’t tell anybody I was here, alright?” he said uncomfortably. Aberforth gave a laugh.

“I’ll keep me trap shut if you’ll do the same,” he said with a wink. Remus took the Fire-Whiskey from him, nodding. “Just...out of curiosity, why be ye here?” he said, giving Remus a suspicious look.

“I thought you were going to get back to your job?” Remus replied, trying not to feel guilty about his rudeness. Aberforth looked slightly taken aback, but prepared all the same.

“Well, just so ‘appens, swappin’ jaw is part of me job! So, lemme ‘ear all yer troubles, laddie,” he said, pulling up a chair. “Lay it on me,” he said, looking a little too eager. Remus almost felt sorry for him. It must be hard, being Dumbledore’s brother. Always being the underdog. It was only this sad thought that began him talking.

“All of my friends don’t trust me. Because I’m a Werewolf,” he said, saying his entire library of troubles in two sentences. Aberforth nodded his understanding...or nodded only because he knew that was what he had seen the other bartenders do in these types of predicaments.

“Well, ‘ave you talked to’em? Told’em yer feelin’s?” he asked, his watery eyes looking as though they were swimming through a sea of many different emotions. The foremost that of clemency.

“Well, no. In fact I haven’t spoken to them since...and I don’t want to. But I’ve got this party to go to today...not even sure I’ll go. I doubt they want me to,” he said, attempting to shrug off the clinging wretchedness.

“Well, if it’s any help, I know fer a fact that they’d want you to come,” Aberforth assured.

“How do you know?” Remus said, trying to keep the accusation from his voice. Aberforth seemed to be thinking.

“Well, fer one, they wouldn’t have invited ye. And fer two, they wouldn’t be walkin’ on pins and pointy wands around ye. If they didn’t like ye, they wouldn’t care if they hurt yer feelin’s,” he said. Remus thought about this. He had a point.

“I guess...the main thing is...” Remus said, uncomfortable about admitting it. “I’m not ready to forgive them, and when I see their faces, I feel really guilty about it,” he said. Aberforth snorted, throwing his rag at his knee.

“Tha’s just bein’ muddle-headed, tha’ is!” he said. Remus looked affronted. “Ye can’t go ‘round feelin’ guilty fer yer friends betrayin’ ye! Ye be mad as long as ye want to!” he said. “Ye got e’ery right to!”

Remus let out a sigh. “I just get so...angry! I can’t help it.”

“Ye need to talk to ‘em,” Aberforth said. Remus nodded, and then frowned.

“I think you’re right...but I’m not going to them. I want them to come to me. I want them to apologize. I’m not going to go begging at their doorstep for acceptance,” he said. Nodding firmly, his heart felt cemented in one spot. “If they want me as their friend again, which I’m not sure they do, they can come to me...”

“Tha’s a nice way ter think!” Aberforth said. “And no more ‘o’ this feelin’ guilty! You done nothin’ wrong! Ye hear?” Remus gave a nod, and then looked down at his untouched Fire Whiskey. Aberforth stared at him hard, and Remus seemed to be a mirror, directing the stare at the bottle. “Ye aren’ goin’ ter drink tha’ are ye?” he said, sounding more than ever like Professor Dumbledore.

Remus gave a self-mocking snort. “No...no of course I’m not. I doubt I ever was. I will never resort to drinking this,” he said, pushing the bottle away with distaste. Then he put his head in his hands. When he next looked up, his eyes were wet with liquid gloom. Aberforth gave him a sad look, then looked up at the clock.

“Ye better get goin’, they’re waitin’ on ye...”

~~~

“Can we eat the cake yet?” James said, eyeing the huge cake Lily had baked with great anticipation. Lily smirked.

“We’re waiting for Remus! He should be here any second,” she said reprovingly. The room seemed to get quiet.

“I doubt he’ll come...” Peter whispered, and they all threw him glares. The reason being only because he had spoken what everybody else had been too afraid to.

“We’re waiting,” Lily said firmly. They all sat in an uncomfortable silence, looking at the floor as if it was telling an extremely interesting story. Heather dared break the silence.

“So...how has everything been working out, in the new house?” she said, looking at Alice and Frank, who were sitting together. They looked up, looking relieved for the change of subject. They passed the next fifteen minutes talking about their new house, and then yet another silence fell. That silence didn’t last long, however, as a knock resounded throughout the room. For a long time, everybody just stared at the door. Finally Alex rolled her eyes.

“Don’t trouble yourselves, I’ll get it,” she said in annoyance. She marched over to the door, and opened it. The sight that met all of their eyes made them feel rather sick. It was Remus alright, but a Remus as they had never seen him. His clothes were dirty and ragged. His hair was disheveled, and his eyes were baggy. He looked horrible. He pulled off his shabby coat and hat, setting them neatly on a nearby couch. He smelled strongly of liquor, and he was unshaven. He walked in, tiredly, and saw them all gazing in shock. Even Dumbledore seemed unable to find the right words for a greeting.

“Hello, Remus,” Lily said in false cheerfulness, standing up. Remus glared at her. She moved to give him a warm hug, but he moved out of her grasp sharply, causing her to almost fall over. James stood up in anger. Lily looked crushed.

“There is no need to treat her like that, she was only being nice,” James said, walking around the couch to stand beside her. Remus focused his gaze on James.

“Really? There is no reason at all?” he said, disgusted.

Silence followed these words. Remus took a deep breath, and looked around him. He saw Lily’s heartbroken face, and felt horrible. What was happening to him? Where was the Remus Lupin he had always been?

“Sorry I’m late,” he murmured to Lily, in a way of half-hearted apology, before brushing past them to sit on the couch. All eyes followed him.

“So...what have you been up to lately?” Frank asked suspiciously.

“Job interviews, mostly,” Remus muttered, his eyes closing and opening as if he was barely awake.

“Hopefully you didn’t go to an interview looking like that?!” Alex asked, coming back to sit down beside Peter. Remus bristled, and everybody glared at Alex.

“Alex!” Heather said sharply.

“What else was I supposed to do? I have no money. I have these clothes on my back, and an apartment with no electricity or water. I’m screwed,” he finished. “So, explain to me what the hell I was supposed to do.”

Alex looked stunned.

“Why did you let it get to this point?” James asked, still a little on edge. “Why didn’t you get a job earlier? Why wait?” After he said this, he felt like an idiot. Regretting his words already, he prepared himself for Remus’ next words.

“Well, if you’ll recall, I’M A WEREWOLF!” he said, breathing hard. “Do you have any idea how hard it is to get a job when you’re a Werewolf? No, you don’t. You were right all along Sirius. I’m just a Werewolf, I could never achieve anything,” at those cutting words, he began to leave.

“Remus!” Sirius called, standing up. “Don’t you understand? We’re your friends, we can help you! I can lend you some...”

“No, I don’t take money from strangers,” Remus said. Sirius clenched his jaw in regret. So now they were strangers? Dumbledore, however, had just shared a nod with everybody else while Remus wasn’t looking. He stood up. They had thought something like this might happen, so they had made a plan...

“Remus, realize that I had no idea that you had no knowledge of The Prophesy,” he said. Remus nodded stiffly, wondering where he was going with this. “I ask you, would you take help from me?”

Remus said nothing, but stared at the ground. He needed to put his pride behind him. He was going to starve, and soon he would have no place to live. Running a hand through his dirty hair, he sank back into a chair, trying not to give in to fatigue. “How can you help me? I don’t want your money.”

“I happen to know of a job opening in the Floo Network Organization Office,” Dumbledore said. Remus snorted.

“Yeah, and they’ll love me. The only little drawback is that I’m a...”

“A perfectly capable young man,” Dumbledore finished for him. “I can persuade them to give you a chance. That is, if you’re willing to give a good hard effort.”

Remus looked as if Christmas had come early. Was he hearing correctly? Trying to find some flaw in this plan, he stood up, thinking. He found none, and so walked over to Dumbledore. He grabbed his hand and shook it. “Thanks, Professor,” he said. Then he turned to everybody else. His manner changed immediately to that of stone cold hurt. “I’m sorry, Sirius. I don’t think I’ll be staying. I’m sure that the party will be better that way. It’s not as if we’re friends or anything,” he said. He gave a final nod to Dumbledore, and then left.

Silence reigned supreme, and everybody looked around anxiously. Heather tried to talk in a cheery voice. “Come on, let’s have some cake.”

After Remus’ departure, things were very quiet, and laughter was at a minimum. Heather tried a few times to raise Sirius’ mood, but after failing miserably many times, she gave up, and suggested half-heartedly that they just move onto the presents. They did so, and Sirius put on a forced smile.

First he opened a present from Peter and Alex, which turned out to be a book on how to grow different sorts of fungus. At first he thought it might be a joke, but when he saw their faces, he knew that they were serious, and gave a very fake ‘thank you’ while giving Heather a sideways glance. He knew James was about to burst out laughing, and probably would have if Lily hadn’t been stomping on his foot. Setting the bizarre present aside, he moved on. Honestly, what did he want with a book like that?!

The next one was from Alice and Frank, and turned out to be a miniature foe-glass. “Picked it up from an Auror shop down in London,” Frank said. Sirius looked at it, and noticed that nobody in the room was untrustworthy...at the moment. Giving them a sincere thank-you, he smiled. It was a pretty neat bit.

Next came Lily and James’ present. It turned out to be a compass, that you could put on your broomstick. Sirius’ face split into a wide grin. He hugged Lily tightly, and slapped James on the back. Next, he moved to a small, bright blue package. He read the card, and saw that it was from Dumbledore. He opened it eagerly, and nearly dropped the thing in his shock. It was a disillusionment ring! He slipped it on, and immediately his body was barely discernable from the background. It was much like an invisibility cloak, except that he wasn’t completely invisible...and it wasn’t a cloak. Smiling, he shook Dumbledore’s hand.

“Thanks a lot, Professor,” he said, smiling warmly. Dumbledore chuckled.

“I suppose I should give up trying to get you to call me Albus,” he said, shaking his head fondly. They all laughed. But then Heather stood up.

“Alright...my turn,” she said to Sirius, who looked up at her curiously. “Follow me,” she said, holding out her hand. He took it, and followed her. She was heading towards the back door. He looked to James for some input, but James merely smiled and beckoned him forward. So, left to wonder, he allowed Heather to drag him outside.

As soon as the door closed behind them, Sirius’ mouth practically dropped to the grass beneath his feet. Standing not five feet away was the most amazing motorcycle he had ever seen. He looked uncertainly at Heather, who smiled at the look on his face. He walked over to it, and laid a hand on the handle. He was speechless.

“Happy Birthday,” she said warmly, glowing in his pleasure. He smiled wickedly, and then ran to her, encompassing her in a huge hug. She laughed as he lifted her off her feet.

“It’s wonderful!” he said truthfully. He looked at it, trying to convince himself this was for real. “Can. I...sit on it?” he said playfully.

“No,” Heather said, jokingly.

“Aw....pleeeease?” he begged. Heather rolled her eyes. As he got on, she handed him the key. He turned it on, and surprisingly, it made very little noise. “It’s so...quiet!” he said.

“Well, I put a charm on it,” she said. “That way, you can fly around and not bother the neighbors,” she said. But Sirius stopped...

“What did you say? Fly?”

“That’s what I said,” she said, grinning even wider. She walked over to the bike, and pointed to a tiny silver button. He pushed it, and the bike lifted a few feet off the ground. His excitement grew. Not only was he riding a motorcycle, but a flying one! It was like a broomstick only way better. He once again pulled Heather to him in a huge hug.

“How on earth did you afford this?!” he whispered, guilt flooding him. Heather saw the guilt, and frowned.

“It was hardly anything,” she lied. “Listen, it’s your birthday! I don’t want you to go feeling guilty! Have fun!”

Sirius gave a sloppy grin. “Can I give you a ride?” he asked, putting loads of charm into his voice.

“Oh, no you don’t,” she said, backing away. “Remember last time?”

“That was on a broom,” he said. “Come on! It’ll be fun!”

“Sirius, I’m afraid of heights!” she insisted, though she was smiling. Sirius put on a pout, giving a most convincing puppy-dog face. She folded her arms in determination. After a few seconds however, she gave in. “Alright...promise you won’t drop me?”

“Heather, I wouldn’t drop you if my life depended on it,” he said softly, and pulled her up into his lap. She closed her eyes, her breathing constricted by her heart being lodged in her throat. He went up a few more feet, and watched her face. She still kept her eyes closed, so he went higher and higher. Until finally the small group of people in the Potter’s backyard were tiny dots.

“Is it almost over?” she squeaked.

“Heather, just open your eyes,” Sirius said laughing. “It’s alright!” Slowly, Heather opened an eye, and then another, until she was looking about in awe.

“This is...amazing!” she said, smiling. Sirius laughed.

“Told you!” he said, and began flying around, testing how fast it could go. The whole time Heather clutched his arms, refusing to look down. She had to admit though...there was a certain freedom about flying around this high up. Swooping and swerving.

After a few more minutes, Sirius finally landed them, and Heather was actually disappointed. “Heather...thanks a lot. That’s the coolest thing ever!” he said excitedly. As everybody filed back inside the house, Sirius pressed a tender kiss on her lips. Heather smiled softly.

“I’m glad you like it,” she muttered. “I just thought...with how much you like flying...” she trailed off, looking into his eyes.

“You two coming?” James said, sticking his head out the door. Sirius sighed and rolled his eyes.

“One of these days...” he said, watching as James gave him a devilish grin. Heather laughed, and the two went inside with the rest. Before long, they were all talking, and laughing like before. But, as the day wore on, Alex had to take her leave. Peter obviously wanted to go with her, but the Marauders, Lily, Heather, and Dumbledore convinced him to stay a little longer. It wasn’t often they got to talk to him without Alex around.

“So...” Peter said, his voice high-pitched. “Heard anything about You-Know-Who, lately?” The room got silent, and everybody looked at him. He shrugged. “Just asking.”

“Why don’t you say his name?” Sirius asked, frowning. Peter shrugged his shoulders once again, and looked at Dumbledore to answer his previous question.

“Well, Peter. I’m afraid not. Snape say’s that he’s not entirely sure what Voldemort is planning on doing. But whatever it is...it’s most certainly not good. He’s just waiting...” he said. “As are we.”

A silence, and then Frank spoke, his tone mocking. “ Well, I don’t think we have to worry. I mean, the thing says we would have to have kids by...” he ticked off months on his fingers, “July!”

“Yeah, so you guys would have to be pregnant like...now!” James said with a laugh. There was a guilty silence as Lily and Alice looked sideways at each other. Dumbledore stared. James and Frank looked at the two girls in horror.

Lily and Alice gave tiny, uncomfortable laughs. “Ummm...surprise!"


Preview for Chapter Thirty~*~Evanesco:“Sirius Black is too noble. He would never spy,” Voldemort said roughly, leaving no room for disagreement. Lucius simply nodded. “Remus Lupin...” he said, trailing off into thought. Then he abruptly said, “no.”

“What about Pettigrew, Lord?” Lucius said. Voldemort nodded slowly, a grin spreading across his face. “Tell me this, Lucius. What does Peter care most about?”

Lucius smiled also. “The DeLaVega’s daughter,” he said. Voldemort looked slightly surprised.





“Calm down, please,” Dumbledore said, after the couples had squabbled for nearly fifteen minutes. “This is very unexpected, to be sure,” he said, looking uncharacteristically flustered.

“Calm down?! CALM DOWN!?” Frank said. “It’s obvious that it’s one of our sons that will be hunted by Lord Voldemort!”

“He’s got a point! I mean, I’m all for calming down and stuff...but this is the last straw! The last criteria!” James said.

“That is not true, James,” Dumbledore said. “The boy will be marked by Lord Voldemort himself, if you will recall.”

“Well, we won’t let that happen,” Lily said frantically. She looked close to tears. James put an arm around her. It got quiet, and Dumbledore cleared his throat, thinking hard.

“We need to hide!” Alice said, nervously.

“No!” Dumbledore said, with such fierceness that they all jumped. “No...” he said softer. “Not yet. There will be a time for hiding...but not now.”

“Why?” James said thickly.

“At this moment, nobody but the people of this room know that Lily or Alice are with child. We could keep it that way, for a time. But, if you we hide you, that will assure Voldemort that we have found reason to hide you. He will know that the Prophesy is already in motion. We have a few months, at the most. If by that time, we do not know anything more, we will, of course, hide you,” he said comfortingly.

“But...” he continued. “For now, we must act as if nothing has happened. I’m trusting you all...” he said, speaking to the whole room of people.

“So we’re just going to lay around and do nothing?!” Peter said, stupidly.

“Sometimes, Peter, stillness is much more powerful than the strongest action. In this case, Mr. Pettigrew, the future of our world depends upon our laying around, doing nothing...”

~~~


Weeks passed, and things moved pretty smoothly. To the naked eye, everything was normal, but The Order all knew that it wasn’t. So, with all of the pressure, it seemed that the best thing to do was to try and forget it. Most days for the members of The Order were lived in terror. Every sound was Lord Voldemort coming to kill them. Today, however, was a rather special day for Heather and Sirius...it was a Saturday. That meant that they were finally off work at the same time. But free time seemed to lie only with one of the inhabitants of the household. Heather was sitting on the bed, with Tyde curled up in her lap, purring nonstop. She had a book propped on a pillow, and her wand up. The book was the size of a small killer whale, with flashing red letters pronouncing the title of the book:

The Miscellany of Common Wizarding Afflictions and Maladies for the Intermediate Healer

Sirius had often laughed that at least now she would never lose it; It’s size too large for the normal hide-outs of missing objects. Heather now was concentrating hard on a page in the middle of the book, her brain working frantically to dredge up the most pain she had ever been in. She remembered when a huge girl had beaten her up in the orphanage. Her pain mixed with her humiliation had combined to make a sizable amount of agony sufficient enough to stay in her memory for so many years.

Now that she had thought of the pain, she laid her hand on her own arm. Suddenly, her pain was transferred into her forearm. Lifting her hand up, she saw a large red gash, slicing neatly down her arm. The pain seared, but she ignored it. Now, she had to heal it. Blood trickled down towards the white bedcovers, but she quickly stopped the bleeding with a wave of her wand.

She squinted her eyes, trying to read the tiny print. She studied the wand movement, and the incantation to heal it properly. She raised her wand in the air, and got about halfway through the spell when the door burst open.

“Honey! Are you almost done?” Sirius said loudly, swinging the door wide, almost as wide as his gorgeous smile.

“Scicalli Frunti Ude–Sirius!” she said in shock, leaping nearly a foot in the air. The half-said spell made a loud cracking sound, much like a piece of plastic being snapped in two. The result was one of great pain. The cut in her arm stung, and out of the cut, sprang bright yellow flowers. She swore in pain, taking it in turn to glare at the text book, to her arm, to Sirius, and then back again. She clenched her jaw, and saw Sirius freeze, his eyes bugging out.

It took him a few moments to realize that bright yellow daisy’s were popping out of his girlfriend’s arm. “Heather...I know you like flowers, but this is taking it a little too far...” he said. She rolled her eyes, but her arm throbbed with pain. He quickly hurried to her. His eyes, already on the verge of popping out, extended even further out of his skull. “Meriln’s beard! Are you alright?”

“Sirius, I have flowers sprouting from my arm...” she said slowly. “Of course, I’m perfectly alright!” she said sarcastically. He didn’t seem to think it funny.

“Anything I can do?” he said.

“Yes,” she said.

“What is it?” he said eagerly, his face showing anticipation and anxiety.

“Don’t interrupt me next time I’m trying to heal myself!” she practically exploded. He gave a sheepish grin.

“Gotcha,” he murmured, and then watched as she picked up her wand again.


“Scicalli Frunti Udenith Confaz,” she muttered, and the flowers disappeared. Then, the cut began to disappear up her arm, as if a tape was being played in reverse. In seconds she was healed.

“Done?” Sirius whispered. She nodded, her lips pursed. “Okay well...I was going to give you these flowers but...” he pulled some flowers that he had managed to conceal behind his back out. “well...I guess you’ve probably had enough flowers for today,” he said. Then at the look on her face, he nodded. “Yeah...definitely a ‘no’ on the flowers. He tapped the flowers with his own wand and they disappeared.

“So...what have you been doing all day?” she asked him, having been cooped in this room, trying to learn the different spells.

“Well, waiting for you to finish, mostly. And I watched some Quidditch,” he said, shrugging. “And I got you those flowers...”

“They were really sweet of you,” Heather said, not wanting to hurt his feelings. But so far, she had not had a very good day. Not only had she not been practicing healing all day, but her boss had told her that by Monday, he wanted a report on what she thought about incorporating Muggle stitches into the hospital, meaning that the rest of her day was shot. She had yet to tell Sirius about this.

“So...now that you’re done, want to go do something?” he asked eagerly, like a puppy asking to be taken for a walk. Heather smiled sadly. She wanted to say ‘yes’ so badly, but knew that if she didn’t get this done today, she might not have time tomorrow, and she ran a very good risk of getting fired if that happened.

“Sirius...I really can’t,” she said, forcing the miserable words out. They went slowly, traitors to her heart and well-being. Sirius looked crestfallen, his eyes showing offense. “It’s not that I don’t want to!” she said quickly. “It’s just...my boss came by the fireplace this morning. He said he wants a report from me by Monday...”

“Do it tomorrow!” he said, shrugging. Heather shook her head.

“You know I can’t just procrastinate like that. I’ve got responsibilities,” she said.

“And I don’t?” he said.

“I never said that!” she said. “Sirius, don’t make this harder on me than it already is. Maybe if I get at least half of it done, we can still do something tonight. Alright?” she said, consolingly. Sirius nodded, looking like a little boy. He went moping out of the room. Heather sighed, pressing the heels of her hands to her eye sockets. Never had she gone through so much stress. She had never owned her own place, and even sharing the load with Sirius was hard. Even though she knew he did most of it, it was only because he was better paid. They both worked hard, but Heather was the only one that seemed to let the stress get to her, where as Sirius didn’t seem to care about the mounting piles of work that needed to be done, and truth be told, neither did his boss.

It was well known that Sirius was the best in the squad. He was simply irreplaceable, meaning that if he didn’t feel like doing work over the weekend, he didn’t. Heather, however, had no such position, and therefore had to work harder to keep her job.

Deciding that getting worked up over everything would not help at all, she walked over to her desk. Pulling out parchment and a quill, she began to write.


~~~



Sirius tapped his foot anxiously. He had to do it tonight. This was the night.... But he let out a frustrated sigh. How was he supposed to do it if Heather stayed locked up in their room all day doing work? In all honesty, he felt guilty. He knew that he had a much better job than Heather did, and he also knew that he didn’t have to work as hard to keep it as she did. It had been nearly two and a half hours now, and still she showed no outward signs of being finished. He decided to check in on her...just to see how she was doing. Maybe she could use some advice, or maybe just some company!

“Heather?” he said, poking his head in. He smiled at the sight of her. She had her hair pulled up in a messy bun, with wisps falling down around her face, framing it like the beautiful picture that it was. She had a smudge of ink on her nose, and her hand was covered in black marks from the quill. A stack of papers surrounded her, and he looked on in awe. He had never in his life written a report as long as she was now. As he closed the door behind him, she gave a tiny jump and looked up. She actually smiled then.

“Almost finished,” she said rather breathlessly, as if she had just run a marathon. Sirius walked over, and saw the tiny words crammed onto what seemed like hundreds of feet of parchment.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen somebody work so hard at something...other than Lily of course,” he said.

“Well, some people actually have to work to keep their jobs,” she said with a hint of resentment. She hadn’t meant to let it slip, but with the horrible day she was having, she didn’t really care. Her head was throbbing, and the hand clutched around her quill felt like it might never move again. Her brain took a deep breath, however, as she realized that she could stop for today. She could easily finish the rest tomorrow. Standing up, she looked around guiltily as she saw Sirius looking uncomfortable over her last comment. “Sorry, I didn’t mean that,” she muttered.

“It’s okay,” he said.

“I’m just...tired. Today has been...not fun,” she said, a slight laugh escaping her. “But now I can relax!” she said, walking up to Sirius.

“Exactly,” he said, a smile creeping in his face, waiting to explode. “Want to go to dinner?”

“Yeah, sounds great! What should I wear?” she said tantalizingly, moving over to the closet.

“Oh, madam, allow me to help!” he said, eyeing her.

~~~


“Report, Lucius...” a cold, sinister voice hissed. The voice made the hairs on the hairs on the hairs of the back of his neck stand up. The voice rolled across the air with serpentine grace, assuring that nothing could stop it from leaking into the ears of the unaware, poisoning their hearts.

“Nothing, Lord. I see no signs of unusual behavior. They seem to be perfectly unaware that we are watching them. I think...” Lucius’ words were cut roughly to a halt by the serpent voice.

“Idiot boy,” the voice said, the acid words rolling off the tongue of the most evil wizard that ever lived, Lord Voldemort. “Do not underestimate them. Albus Dumbledore is no blundering idiot that we can easily put out of our minds,” he said, his words were now laden with anger. The anger was apparent to Lucius, who was trying not to show his fear. Voldemort gave a loud sniff, then a bark of laughter.”You’re afraid,” he said with satisfaction.

Lucius said nothing, looking anywhere but the face of his Master.

“What have you heard from Severus?” he said, saying the name with crystalline approval. Severus had served him well so far.

“I...Lord, he has not returned yet,” Lucius said, keeping as much emotion out of his voice as possible. Voldemort gave a harsh, heart-ripping laugh.

“So like your father...” he said, looking at Lucius. Then, almost as an afterthought, “do you miss him?”

“No,” Lucius said promptly. And it was the truth. Voldemort sensed this and smiled.

“Good. Now, what do we know so far?”

“The Longbottoms and Potters are the only couple that I have found that have defied you three times,” Lucius said. Voldemort gave a growl of disapproval. “And now we are just waiting to see which pair have a child in July. Then we kill him before he can be of any threat.”

Voldemort nodded his pleasure. “They won’t stand a chance,” he said with a slight grin. It got very quiet, and nobody moved, least of all Lucius. Then, out of nowhere, Voldemort began speaking again. “We need a spy, closer than Severus. We need somebody who is friends with the Potters and Longbottoms...”

“There is Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew,” Lucius said promptly. Voldemort sensed he was holding something back from him...but as he looked into Lucius’ gaze he thought he must have imagined it. His blood-red eyes glimmered for a second with suspicion, and then the next second were filled with an expression of great disappointment.

“Sirius Black is too noble. He would never spy,” Voldemort said roughly, leaving no room for disagreement. Lucius simply nodded. “Remus Lupin...” he said, trailing off into thought. Then he abruptly said, “no.”

“What about Pettigrew, Lord?” Lucius said. Voldemort nodded slowly, a grin spreading across his face. “Tell me this, Lucius. What does Peter care most about?”

Lucius smiled also. “The DeLaVega’s daughter,” he said. Voldemort looked slightly surprised.

“I didn’t know those Auror scum had a daughter...” he said, his eyes narrowing.

“Her name is Alex, and she was in the same year at Hogwarts as I, my Lord,” Lucius said, giving a slight bow. Voldemort nodded.

“Yes...yes,” he said, more of a hiss than anything else. “I will enjoy having her killed...” Lucius almost gulped, but repressed it just in time. He forced a smile.

“Perfect, Lord,” Lucius said...his voice shaking slightly. Murder....

“Cowardice is a horrible thing, is it not, Lucius?” Voldemort said, an almost tender smile on his face. But at a second glance, you would see the maniacal glint in his eyes. Alongside it was a look that one could never find in the eyes of a human. “You wouldn’t want to be guilty of such feelings...would you now?” Lucius shook his head. “Good...I realize that you are young...but that is no excuse. Keep your disgusting feelings to yourself next time....or else I’m liable to get...” he laid a soft, almost loving hand on Lucius’ forearm, “angry.” Lucius quickly closed his eyes in barely repressed agony as the mark on his arm burned and ached. “We kill Alex, and he joins us.”

“My Lord, may I kill her?” Lucius said, trying to sound eager, fixing the mistake he had made earlier by showing his cowardice to Voldemort. He would prove he could do it...not only to Voldemort, but to himself. Voldemort looked furious.

“Idiot! Do you realize what would happen if a Death Eater killed her?”

“Pettigrew would hate Death Eaters...” Lucius said, finally understanding. Voldemort said nothing, which meant that he was right.

“Have you ever tortured anybody, boy?”

“Yes.”

“Well, here is your test then. Knott will abduct two Aurors. You will torture them yourself until they crack.... Make them kill the girl while Peter is present. Let him watch, and make sure he knows his allies...”

“With pleasure,” Lucius said, giving a slight bow.


~~~


“Oh, definitely that one,” Sirius said as Heather put on a jean mini-skirt and a sweater. Heather laughed at his enthusiasm.

“Okay, okay, keep your shirt on!” she said, a little giggle escaping her.

“I’m trying, trust me,” he said teasingly, but as he leaned back on the desk, he felt something knock over. He turned around and felt the blood rush from his face down to his toes. Heather came over to see what he had done, and he saw her face tighten with disbelief, and then slacken with desolation He had knocked over the inkwell, causing ink to spill all over her day’s work.

“I...you...” she said weakly, trying to think of any kind of spell that would clean only some of the ink off the paper.

“Heather...I’m so sorry...I’m sorry, I can’t believe I just did that,” he said. His heart felt like it had been hit with a sledgehammer. She had spent practically all day on this paper. She raised her wand. It was worth a try. Maybe the cleaning spell wouldn’t clean off the words. She tapped the paper twice, and Sirius crossed his fingers.

“Evanesco...” she whispered desperately. At once the paper was cleaned...of everything. The parchment looked as if it had never been used. This had to be the worst day she had ever had.... She looked up and saw that Sirius looked almost as upset as she. She knew it had been an accident. Holding inside all of the anger that was struggling to get out and attack him, she looked away.

Sirius saw her eyes blank themselves of emotion, and felt the world slide from his feet. He wished she would yell. He preferred it to this uncertain silence. “Heather...” he began, but found that no words seemed to work. She just nodded.

“I need to...I’m just going to...walk,” and without another backward glance, she walked from the room. Sirius swore and kicked the desk in his anger. How could he be such an idiot? She had worked so hard on that paper, and he had come in and ruined in less than fifteen minutes. He pulled out of his pocket a small wooden box. It was dark walnut, and had a picture of the ocean burned into it. Except that magic had been added so that the burn was colored. He opened it, and looked at the ring he had been prepared to give her tonight at dinner. The engagement ring. He stuffed it back into his pocket. He heard the front door slam, and knew she had left. He saw all the blank papers on the desk, and then sat down. He picked up the ink bottle, and then the quill. Chewing on his bottom lip for a few seconds, he thought. Then, he began to write with gusto.

He would make it up to he tonight. He would take her to dinner tonight, and he would give her that ring, tonight!


Preview for Chapter Thirty-One~*~Rings and Reperation: “Hey,” a mournful voice said. Heather jumped and spun around. Her hand had already moved to her pocket, where she had stowed her wand. Her eyes widened, and her arm went slack, however, when a shocking sight met her eyes. It was Remus Lupin...and he looked wonderful.

He had on what looked like a brand new pair of dress robes, and a rather stiff, snobby looking wizarding hat. Across the hat was written in blinking letters, “FNOO.” Heather knew it stood for “Floo Network Organization Office.” He was clean-shaven, and his hair was gelled into place. Heather could only sputter. He sat down at on the swing next to her.


Chapter 31: Rings and Reparation
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]


Heather walked around in silence, depression forming a suffocating bubble around her. The only thing that dared to try and burst through the bubble was her anger. It tried in vain to explode through to the surface, but Heather refused to allow it. It was only an accident, she reminded herself. It’s not the end of the world. Kicking a small pebble around, she spotted a small playground. It’s swings hung down tightly, as if they were straining with all their might to reach the dusty earth. Heather decided to help them by plopping down onto one of them and wrapping her arm around the rusty chain. She began to kick back and forth, and it was a few seconds before she heard footsteps coming from behind her.

“Hey,” a mournful voice said. Heather jumped and spun around. Her hand had already moved to her pocket, where she had stowed her wand. Her eyes widened, and her arm went slack, however, when a shocking sight met her eyes. It was Remus Lupin...and he looked wonderful.

He had on what looked like a brand new pair of dress robes, and a rather stiff, snobby looking wizarding hat. Across the hat was written in blinking letters, “FNOO.” Heather knew it stood for “Floo Network Organization Office.” He was clean-shaven, and his hair was gelled into place. Heather could only sputter. He sat down on the swing next to her. She noticed his lost, uncertain look and knew what he was thinking almost immediately. He wanted to forgive her, because he wanted a friend, but he didn’t want to forgive her, because what she had done...what they had all done...was horrible.

“Remus, you don’t have to forgive me. But you can still talk to me if you want. I’m still your friend, even if you don’t want to be mine...” she said, readjusting the swing so that she could sit and look at him. He looked forlorn and, for awhile, said nothing.

“Heather...why did you do that?” he asked.

“Remus...I swear to you that it had nothing to do with trust,” she assured, her heart in her eyes. Remus gave her a penetrating stare, as though reading her mind. He seemed satisfied and nodded.

“Heather, be completely honest with me. Alright?” he asked. Heather nodded. “Okay...is Sirius still mad at me because he thinks I helped you cheat on him?”

Silence, and then loud laughter. Remus looked affronted, and Heather quickly stopped. “No, no, no! Definitely not!” she assured with gusto. “Remus, that is way in the past!” Remus shrugged, and stared at the ground. “When are you going to forgive us?”

“I don’t know...” he said, rather childishly. “You guys still haven’t given me an adequate reason for not telling me...”

“That’s because it was a stupid reason. We were all scared, Remus, by what we had just heard. We wanted to forget it. We thought it would be awkward, telling you. And plus that would have meant that we would have had to talk about it again, something everybody was trying to avoid. You have no idea, Remus. Everybody was upset, Alice and Frank were even about o break up. It wasn’t a happy time, and dredging it all up again would have been horrible. So we decided that if the time came, we would tell you. I know we did a horrible thing, and there is no excuse. We made a mistake, and I can’t express how sorry we all are right now...” she said, her heart in her throat. Remus was staring at the ground closely, as if hoping it might tell him what to do next. “Remus,” Heather said softly after many minutes had gone by.

Remus looked up at her, looking like a beggar in a fancy suit with his bloodshot eyes, and looking as if he was getting over a horrible sickness.

“Please forgive us. We never meant to hurt you. If we had, we wouldn’t be trying to help you now,” she said.

“Oh yeah? How have you helped me?” he said accusingly.

“Where do you think Dumbledore got the idea to find you a job?” she asked, raising an eyebrow. Remus’ mouth fell open.

“You guys told him to do that?” he said in shock. Heather simply nodded. He then closed his eyes, burying his head in his hands. “I just feel like...no matter what I do, I’ll always be apart from you guys...I’ll always be a Werewolf.”

“Remus, of course you’ll always be a Werewolf,” she said. It wasn’t the answer Remus had suspected. “That’s why we respect you so much. I don’t know any other Werewolf that is able to handle it like you do. You have one of the worst lives among us, and yet it’s you who keeps us on track,” she said. “You’re our rock, Remus. I’ve only known you for a year, but already I find myself thinking, ‘what would Remus do?’” she admitted.

“Really?” he said, and she could see his self-esteem rising. She grinned, nodding.

“They would kill me if they knew I was telling you this, but you have no idea how much James and Sirius look up to you. Sure, they want to be care-free, and appear as if they don’t mind how far they take their pranks and rule breaking. But they do, Remus, and they look to you, so that they know where to draw the line,” she said. A new voice then entered their conversation.

“Remember our school days, Remus? Only you could keep me and James in line. Didn’t you ever wonder why you were the only one we listened to? You’re our friend, whether you believe it or not,” Sirius said. He was standing, his arms folded, smiling.

“And you’re stuck with us,” Heather said firmly, laughing also. Remus gave a smile too, and Heather felt relief wash over her. Finally, Remus was thinking sensibly again.

“I’m sorry, you guys. I’ve been an idiot,” he said.

“It’s okay, we forgive you,” Sirius said with a barking laugh. Remus grinned, standing. He embraced Heather, smiling and the pulling her back to hold her at arm’s length.

“Thank you,” he muttered, then to Sirius, he gave a nod. “I’m going to talk to the others...I owe Lily an apology...” he trailed off, frowning at the memory. Then he looked around to see if a Muggle was watching and Disapperated.

“Man, you really know all the right stuff to say. I could have never made him feel better. I would have botched things up,” he said.

“Yeah, you probably would have,” Heather returned, rather coldly. His saying that reminded her of the large paper that was waiting to be redone. Sirius snorted, and she wondered why he was looking so happy.

“Hey, I was wondering, could you come to the house with me?” he asked, tentatively, standing on the balls of his feet. Heather frowned and shrugged.

“No, I really don’t feel like going back there. It will make me feel like I need to be writing my paper...again,” she said, putting much emphases on the last word. Sirius grinned happily, confusing her.

“Accio Paper,” he said in reply. Heather stared at him in exasperation, but then stopped as she saw papers fly into his hand...with words on it! Had he...no...would he do that for her...?

He had. “Here’s your paper, all finished.” Heather took it nervously, and saw that it was just as long as her’s had been. She flipped through the pages, her eyes scanning the papers eagerly. Sirius saw her smile, and look up in surprise.

“This is wonderful!” she said in awe. You did an amazing job!” she said.

“See, I really do have a brain!” he said proudly. Heather laughed, and then gave a him a hug, standing on her toes to kiss him. He smiled in delight.

“I should write papers for you more often...”

“No, we should just go to dinner. Don’t you think?” she asked, a bright smile in place, her finished paper clutched in her hand. Sirius grinned ecstatically.

“Where, do you think?” he asked, trying to think of the right place to ask her...

“The Book and Broom?” she asked, thinking of the cheap little restaurant down the street. Sirius almost winced.

“I was thinking of somewhere a little...nicer,” he said. She frowned her confusion, setting his stomach fluttering for a few seconds. God, she was beautiful... “How about... Natalia’s?” he said, thinking of the expensive restaurant that was famous for it’s fine, wizard dining. Heather looked appalled.

“Are you serious?” she said, and as he opened his mouth to make a “Yes, of course I’m Sirius,” joke, she continued. “That place is more expensive than three meals put together!”

“We need a break,” he said, shrugging. “If I have to eat another Broom Burger, I think I’ll vomit.”

“How on Earth are we supposed to afford it?!” she asked, incredulous. Sirius pulled her along.

“We’ll afford it,” he said impatiently, and in seconds, they had both Disapperated.

The sounds of clattering glass and crystal filled Heather’s ears, along with the chattering of highly strung witches and wizards. She looked around nervously, feeling as if she was standing alone in a crowd of aliens. She wasn’t supposed to eat at fancy places like this! She grabbed Sirius’ sleeve and was about to tell him that they should leave, and it would be better if they just ate somewhere else. Sirius, however, seemed determined to ignore any protests she might have and moved onward, his face set and oddly nervous. She wondered why he was acting so strangely.

“Table for two,” Sirius said in a rarely heard, business-like voice. The man behind the counter raised a finely curved brow. Then, his nose rather too high up, as if he was constantly smelling for money, nodded. The man began walking briskly ahead of them. Sirius turned to give Heather an anxious, jittery smile before following. Heather gave an irritated sigh and followed. She noticed the fine jewels and glittery dress of the people around her. She felt naked in her jean skirt and blouse. After what seemed like ages, they finally came to a small, circular table.

Sirius sat down, and the man pulled out the chair for Heather. She was not expecting this, however, and nearly fell over when the chair was not beneath her. She managed to save herself, however, by clutching the table, which, thanks to Sirius’ holding it down with his elbows, did not overturn.

Blushing to the roots of her dark hair, she righted herself. Many people stared, and looked affronted. None more so than the waiter. His high-held nostrils flared in indignation, and she gave an apologetic smile. He ignored it, however, and turned to Sirius, who was barely containing his laughter. Turning his laughs into hacking coughs, he looked at the waiter, his eyes sparkling.

“May I interest you two in a drink?” the man asked, looking now directly at Sirius, apparently thinking Heather too bumble-headed to think for herself. She narrowed her eyes, and watched as the thin man pulled from nowhere two menus. He handed one to Sirius, and then , turning to Heather, handed it to her slowly, as if to a three year-old. Her eyes nearly crackled with fire as she restrained the urge to snatch the menu from his hand and beat him over his snobby head with it. Taking it with great drama, she began to scan the pages.

They quickly ordered their drinks, the waiter looking as if he would rather eat slugs than serve the two of them. This fact didn’t seem to bother Sirius half as much as it bothered Heather. But soon, Sirius was able to make her forget all about the insufferable waiter. He laughed and joked, and before they knew it, they had finished their drinks, and their food.

Heather was quite stuffed, and was smiling sleepily. “You know,” she said softly, “at first I was really apposed to coming here.”

“Glad you came anyways?” he asked. She nodded. Sirius’ hands were sweating as he saw her, fiddling idly with the last remaining bits of her food. He took a deep breath. He had never been this nervous. He rolled the little velvet box around in his pocket, and then, when he had left the silence on for too long, he cleared his throat. Heather looked up, her blue eyes searching his.

“Uhhh...” he said. This was a lot easier in the movies... “Heather?” he said, nervously.

“Mmm?” she asked, leaning her cheek on her hand. Sirius licked his lips, trying to give moisture where none would go. His entire mouth felt like a desert.

“I wanted to ask you something...” he said, sitting up straighter. She looked slightly concerned, noticing that something cESNet quite right.

“Sirius...what did you do this time?” she asked. “Please tell me you didn’t park your motorbike in the flowers again,” she moaned, rolling her eyes. He gave a nervous little laugh.

“No...” he said. “Nothing like that.”

“What is it then?” she said impatiently, searching his gaze. Then she caught on...was he about to ask what she thought he was going to ask? If so.... She felt chills go up and down her spine. Finally...after so many months of waiting for him to pop the question...

“I was wondering...”

“Yes...?” she said, leaning closer.

“What perfume are you wearing? It’s really lovely,” he said breathlessly. All of the air left Heather’s chest, and Sirius nearly kicked himself. What an idiot!

“Oh...” she said, her heart clenching. And she had been fool enough to think that he was going to ask for her hand in marriage. “I’m not wearing any perfume,” she said dully.

“Oh...right,” he said with a nervous laugh. Then realizing what an idiot he was being, he rolled his eyes at his own idiocy. “Actually, that’s not what I wanted to ask you at all. I wanted to know....” he looked up into her eyes, his face showing every ounce of emotions he as feeling. Heather watched it, as if it was an enthralling movie, taking in every bit of feeling he was showing her, and cherishing it with every particle of her being. “I actually wrote a poem for you, and everything,” he said, blushingly. Heather tried not to snort. “But... I spilled some cheerio’s on the kitchen table and used it for a napkin before you woke up this morning....” His face contorted in innocent guilt.

Heather tried not to smile affectionately, in case he took it the wrong way. Instead, she waited for him to finish. He gave a nervous laugh, mocking himself.

“Anyways, I just wanted to know that you are my everything, my world, my sun, my star, my universe. And I will always love you,” he said, then he gave a sloppy grin. “That sounded a lot less stupid in my head,” he muttered. Heather laughed. “Okay, well...I’m not sure how those Muggles do it, like getting down on one knee. But I think it goes something like...” he stood up, and then knelt down before her. She turned in her seat, excitement in her eyes. Looking up at her, Sirius smiled widely, his heart in his eyes. He took her hand in his, and pulled out a small box. Inside of it was the most beautiful ring Heather had ever seen.

It looked as if real miniature daffodils had wound themselves into a neat little circle. Yet they were tiny, and so delicate looking. At the top of the ring, the small flowers seemed to bunch together to hold a soft, lavender jewel. But as she squinted her eyes, she could see something moving inside. It was like little tiny dots of bright light, dancing just for her. Looking back up at Sirius, she was dazed.

“Heather, will you marry me?"


Preview for Chapter Thirty-Three~*~Blank Eyes: The two men simply stared. It was then that Peter realized how utterly…dead, the two looked. It was the best word to describe them. The only thing that kept Peter from thinking that they were in fact no longer living was that they kept blinking meaninglessly at them. Their skin was stretched taught across their faces, leaving gaping, hollow looking sockets for their eyes. Their eyes…. Peter felt almost sick to see them. They looked empty. Maybe these fellows had had too much to drink? The lack of substance surrounding the two was suffocating and downright scary.

Chapter 32: Blank Eyes
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Chapter Thirty-Two~*~Blank Eyes


Sirius’ breath shortened, his heart quickening to a stop. It seemed to take her forever to form an answer. He spent what felt like years trying to interpret the astonished look on her face. Was she happy? Was that triumph or discomfort? Beads of sweat formed on his hands, weighing about as much as a hippopotamus. His hands started to tremble with the weight of the sweat. The soft velvet box in his outstretched palm threatened to turn into burning flame if she didn’t answer him soon. The ring sneered at him, twinkling in the candlelight, almost mocking him.

He almost laughed at himself then. If somebody had told him years ago that he would be kneeling in front of a girl, shaking like a leaf and proposing marriage, he would have said they were tinked. Not only would he have despised the idea of marriage, but he would have scoffed at the suggestion that he would have actually loved somebody; that he wasn’t completely in control of himself.

Kneeling there, as he thought these insane thoughts, that fact dawned on him; he wasn’t completely in control! The fact was that he would do anything for this girl. She could tell him to jump off a cliff and he would ask how high of a cliff she wanted! What scared him more than this, however, was only that he didn’t really mind. Giving a sigh, he watched as her face showed the first, discernable emotion. Happiness.

“Of course I’ll marry you! I’ve been waiting for you to ask me for so long now!” she wailed, throwing her arms around his neck. His heart did somersaults all over the place. She had been waiting for him!? Grinning all over his face, forgetting their surroundings, he stood and pulled her into a heart-wrenching kiss.

His mouth invaded hers, craving her. Their passions collided, fusing together to make a state of rapture so intense that the entire restaurant was feeling dizzy. Struggling for more intimacy, Heather wrapped her fingers around Sirius’ wavy locks. Sirius, in turn, was practically lifting her up off the floor, apparently attempting to swallow her whole. His hand moved in slow movements up and down her back, leaving trails of fire wherever his fingers touched. An eternity could have passed and the two would not have cared or noticed. Both were so embraced warmly in a whirlwind of emotions and feelings.

This, however, was broken by a certain, very unwelcome individual. “If you don’t mind, there is a bar across the street. I suggest you take your hedonist ways in that direction. They are certainly not welcome here!” came a prolonged sniff that accounted for a voice. Their waiter had returned to clean off the table, and was looking very disconcerted to find them not only still there, but groping each other as if the floor had dropped away from their feet, and their only means of escape was to cling to each other.

Sirius heard and broke off the kiss, Heather, not caring for the man at all, preferred to keep her gaze focused on Sirius. She watched as his face rippled with barely contained laughter at the stuck-up man’s look of humility. She saw other costumers looking at them with wild shock. But some of the women were looking wistfully at the men sitting opposite, as if hoping that they might suddenly leap out of their seats at them, capturing them in a romantic kiss much like the one that had just been displayed to them. As no such thing was highly possible, however, they were looking almost upset. One rather large, beefy woman was eyeing Sirius as if given the chance, she would snatch him up in an inescapable conversation. Trying to get a piece of what had just occurred.

Heather turned back to the heated conversation now going on between her fiancé and the waiter. She really didn’t care what they were talking about, but wanted to leave so she could be alone with Sirius.

“I demand that you leave at once!” the wiry man was saying, his face reddening. Sirius looked fit to burst, laughter pushing at the seams of his face.

“Only if my fiancé is ready,” he said, putting emphasis on the unfamiliar word. His tongue tingled with excitement, his mouth approving of the word. “What say you?” he said, turning to Heather. She grinned, and then feigned concentration, prolonging the waiter’s agony. Just when she thought he might faint with anxiety, she nodded.

“Very well,” she sighed, putting on an air of snobbish boredom, sounding much like the man had done earlier. Sirius moved to get her coat for her, but she stopped him with a short, quick shake of her head. It was discreet, but Sirius noticed it. He frowned in confusion, but stopped all the same, waiting with eager anticipation for what she was about to do next.

“Is there a problem, Miss?” the man said irritably, seeing her hesitation. She raised her eyebrows.

“I’m simply waiting…” she said, beginning to examine her nails. The man looked quite perplexed, and actually looked at Sirius for guidance. Sirius, following Heather’s lead, looked expectantly at the man.

“Er…for what?” he asked nervously, very aware of all the costumers now watching his every move. Heather smiled. It was pay-back time.

“Well, are you not going to help me with my coat, or shall I do it for myself?” she asked annoyed. The man looked as if he had been shot. He had completely forgotten the fine etiquette of his job! Jumping quickly, he helped her with her coat rather hastily. People around sitting closest were whispering. ‘Why, for the money they spend here, the least he should do is help the lady with her coat!’ they murmured. He heard these doubtful remarks about his service, and flushed. These two were ruining his flawless reputation!

“Well, now. I suppose you’ll be on your way,” he said, forcing a smile, and then looking eagerly at the people to see if their expressions looked mollified. Heather, giving a knowing smile at Sirius, walked to the door. She stopped then, looking at it as if it would burst open for her. Sirius, knowing her plan to embarrass this man, didn’t open it for her, but also waited.

Now people were whispering even louder. The waiter, who had begun to look relieved, noticed this and looked around. Heather thought he might have a heart-attack when he saw them still standing there. He quickly scanned for something else the insane woman wanted him to do.

The door! She wanted him to open the door! His stretched face pinked with frustration; he bustled to them. He opened the door for Heather, bowing. His tiny eyes darted to the doubtful looking costumers, then reproachfully up at Heather. This girl was ruining him! He had to get her out!

He hoped she didn’t expect him to hold her hand while she apparated to her home. “Have a pleasant day, Miss,” he said loudly for all to hear, though with a touch of clipped disgruntlement. She gave him a glittering smile, but Sirius sniffed.

“And what am I? A sack of beans?” Sirius said loudly. People muttered about the man’s ill manners. The man’s bald head burned brightly.

“And you too, Sir,” the man said through gritted teeth.

“Good day,” Heather muttered, a peevish glint in her eye. The man caught it and felt anger rising. She gave a swift nod and was off, Sirius following in her wake, trying not to laugh out loud with pride. He was sure that, next time, the man would think twice about treating a customer bad.

~~~

“Really, Peter, you don’t have to do all of this!” Alex was protesting. Peter gave a squeaky laugh; a real laugh.

“But, you don’t understand! I do it for my own enjoyment, not yours!” he teased, watching as she spooned the ice-cream around and around as the sun started fall, inviting darkness to take its turn. Alex giggled, feeling truly happy. She didn’t care what everybody else thought. She was in love with Peter, and he her. If they didn’t like it, too bad. But then she thought of Alice, Lily and Heather. She had been Heather’s first friend at Hogwarts! She would have thought at least she would have forgiven her. Peter saw her consternation and frowned. He anxiously pawed at her hand. “Something wrong?”

“I dunno, Pete,” she said uncertainly. “I just…your friends…” she muttered, looking downcast. Peter stiffened slightly.

“What about them?” he asked, his voice growing nasally. Alex shifted uncomfortably.

“They don’t like me, ever since I helped Lucius break Sirius and Heather up,” she whispered. Peter went quiet. It was true. They didn’t respect her anymore, and it showed around them. They were cold and distant to her. He shrugged, sighing dismally.

“Well, in the Marauders, we all stick together. Trust is a major issue. You can’t do something like that and just be forgiven,” he said sadly. “They just don’t understand you like I do.”

“Nobody understands me like you do,” she said with a rather depressing laugh. “But they trust you again, and you helped too,” she said.

“It’s because they’ve known me longer. They think they understand me,” he whispered. He held her hand in his. “Don’t worry. Everything will be alright. After awhile, they’ll see the beautiful person you really are.”

“And if they don’t?”

“Who cares?” he muttered. She laughed.

“You’ve changed so much,” she said, laying a hand on his cheek. His entire face was suddenly warm, despite the chilly wind that was now blowing evil feelings about.

“Thanks to you,” he muttered. She nodded, her smiled evident. How he loved her. He would do anything she asked him, and she knew it. She thought over this, and wondered why she didn’t take advantage of it. She normally would. She didn’t love this boy. But there was something about knowing that he loved her…it changed her. It made her feel…beautiful. It made her want to protect Peter, make sure that, even though she didn’t share his affections, he still loved her. He was the only person that was left.

He was her only friend.

“It’s getting really dark,” Alex acknowledged, looking around, rather surprised. Peter looked around too, actually taking in the scenery and the sounds.

“Yeah. You would think people would still be milling around,” he muttered, looking around the small park bench they were sitting on. The only sound was that of the creaking swings. Nobody was walking around. No cars were driving by. Peter felt an army of goose bumps attacking his arms and the back of his neck. Alex shivered beside him.

“Ready to leave?” she asked, almost nervously. Peter nodded, feeling jittery. He stood up, and the bench croaked its relief. Alex sniffed and tried to carry on their earlier conversation. “I’m sure you’re right. I’ll fit in with your friends soon,” she said confidently.

Peter nodded. “And if they don’t, forget them!” he said indignantly, putting a beefy arm around her. Alex nodded, but slowly moved her hand towards her wand. The hairs on the back of her neck were standing on end. Peter didn’t notice this action, but followed suit as a nearby streetlamp went off. Alex remained calm, while Peter began shaking, and controlling the urge to whimper. All was stone-cold silence. Nobody moved, nobody breathed. All was stillness. Then another streetlamp went out, then another. Soon the only light was from the moon above them.

Peter’s eyes were trying to adjust to the dark when Alex muttered, “Lumos.”

“Oh yeah,” Peter said, having forgotten completely about that spell. “Llamas,” he said, twitching his wand. “I mean, Lumos,” he muttered in quick amendment. His wand gave off light, though it was considerably less bright that Alex’s. As he looked up, having finally gotten his spell right, he nearly leapt out of his skin to see two people standing right in front of them, their eyes rather red, like those of a devil.

Alex gave an immediate sigh of relief. Peter stared at her in confusion. Here were two wizards standing before them, wands pointed straight at their hearts, and Alex was relieved?!

“They’re Aurors!” she explained, seeing that he still looked frightened. Peter squinted through the dark, and could see that they had on identical blue robes. Embroidered on the chest of the robes was the symbol for the Ministry of Magic. “My parents had them over to dinner loads of times!” she said with a smile, starting to walk up to them. “Hello Oliver, Sam…” she said warmly.

The two men simply stared. It was then that Peter realized how utterly…dead, the two looked. It was the best word to describe them. The only thing that kept Peter from thinking that they were in fact no longer living was that they kept blinking meaninglessly at them. Their skin was stretched taught across their faces, leaving gaping, hollow looking sockets for their eyes. Their eyes…. Peter felt almost sick to see them. They looked empty. Maybe these fellows had had too much to drink? The lack of substance surrounding the two was suffocating and downright scary.

Alex’s smile seemed to fade slightly. The two men glanced at each other, their eyes moving for the first time. They shared a sort of shrug, and then raised their wands.

Stupefy!” they yelled together. Peter whipped his wand around, his heart fluttering with terror.

Protego!” For a second Peter thought he had done it, but he saw that it was Alex’s wand, not his own, that bounced the spells back at the two wizards.

Expelliarmus!” Peter said, trying the spell for the second time in his life. The man he had pointed the spell at let out a harsh yell, and winced. But Peter’s spell merely floated softly into the man’s face, causing his hair to stand on end. Maniacal laughter escaped the one called Oliver. Sam, meanwhile, was advancing on Alex.

Impedimenta!” she was yelling over her shoulder, but, focusing on her aim over her shoulder, she didn’t see the swings that were right in front of her.

“Alex! Watch-” but it was too late. Alex’s knees collided with the hard metal of the swing, and she fell facedown into the unyielding grass. Peter, who hadn’t done a thing to help so far, was feeling useless.

Wingardium Leviosa!” he yelled, pointing his wand at the picnic table. Sam, who had been about to curse Alex, looked towards the table in fear. For a second, Peter felt his wand vibrating slightly with his immense effort. “Come on…” he thought furiously. His father had always told him that he could do anything if he tried with all of his heart. He did now. He set all of his focuses on that table, remembering his father’s words.

Finally, with a great heave of emotion, he was able to lift…a rock next to the table. He almost fell over. So much for daddy’s sweet words. Sam gave a loud, insane chirp of laughter, watching as the rock floated a few feet above the grass. Peter cursed loudly, and saw Oliver coming towards him. There was no use for it. He would have to forget about wands. Balling his hand up into a tight fist, he drove it into Oliver’s skeleton face. He flew back, and Peter jumped on him, wands completely forgotten.

Meanwhile, Alex was getting up off the ground. Her nose was throbbing, and blood poured down her front. She knew she had broken it, but she ignored it. She had to get them out of this. Clutching her wand, she watched as Sam came for her, wand raised.

“Just a little bit closer…closer…” she whispered, biding her time. Then, when Sam was feet from her, she grabbed the seat of the swing, and pushed it hard. Its edge did the damage Alex had hoped for. It slammed into his mouth, with the help of Alex’s furious push. Sam let out a scream of pain. He stumbled backwards, and spat out a large glob of blood. Alex felt sick, for inside that glob were several browning teeth.

The man wasted no time. “Diffindo!” he cried, and several large gashes appeared on Alex’s stomach. She clutched them in pain, dropping to the ground. What was happening? Why were these Aurors attacking them? What had they done wrong? But whatever the reason, she couldn’t let them kill her! She had to keep her head, she thought to herself, even as the warm life began to slowly flow from her body. Firstly, she needed to fix these gashes, before she lost too much blood.

Scourgify,” she whispered, and immediately wished she hadn’t. It felt as if her stomach was being scrubbed with a wire-brush. Sam laughed harshly, but Alex focused on her wound. Now it was clean…she needed to heal it…“Reparo,” she said uncertainly. She wasn’t sure what would happen…that spell wasn’t supposed to be used on skin. She felt then as if her skin were molding back together. She screamed in pain. She frantically tore her shirt above her stomach and saw a huge, bright red scar. It was throbbing, and she wasn’t sure how much longer she would be able to stay conscious. She had to save Peter…

Peter was thrown to his back, his eyes black and his lips bloody. He heard Alex’s scream of pain, and looked about wildly. He saw her crumpled on the ground, at the feet of her attacker. He stumbled for his wand, feeling nauseated. What could he do to help her? What curse could he do properly? He almost gave a feeble smile at the only spell he was good at. The tickling spell.

He now had his wand clutched in his hand, his opponent staggering around behind him. Sam was raising his wand up triumphantly, and Peter knew then and there that if he didn’t do something, that man would kill Alex.

“NEVER!” he yelled. “RICTUSEMPRA!” he roared. A jet a sparkling yellow light erupted from his wand, and hurtled towards the man at full force. It hit him in the stomach.

Avada…” the man began, but ended the sentence with bales of laughter. Alex stared in disbelief and then saw Peter, bloodied and looking triumphant, his wand raised. She tried to give him the thumbs up, but her pain kept her from carrying it out completely, that and the fact that Oliver was now sneaking up behind him. This registered slowly. Her first instinct was to yell at him to turn around. But then, after a split-second of thinking, she knew that would be no help. The only spell she had seen Peter successfully carry out was the tickling charm.

Incarcerous!” Alex bellowed. Oliver was suddenly bound tightly with chains. He fell, struggling, to the ground. Peter turned around, his reaction incredibly delayed. Then he saw the man, struggling helplessly on the ground. He looked at Alex, who was looking windswept, but alive all the same. She wiped some blood from her nose on her sleeve, and struggled upright. Peter went to her.

“That was bloody amazing!” he said enthusiastically. Alex laughed, but then clutched her stomach in pain. Peter frowned curiously. Alex hesitated for a second, and then lifter her shirt up a bit so that he could see her scar. Peter’s eyes widened. “Does it hurt?”

“Yeah,” she murmured with a tiny, forced laugh. “Oh well, I’ll get over it. I just didn’t know any actual healing spells.”

“If it hadn’t been for you, I would have been dead,” Peter said softly. “I owe you my life!”

“Hey, I wasn’t the only one out there saving lives. If you hadn’t hit that one with the tickling curse, I wouldn’t be standing here right now,” she said, looking up at him. Her wound already felt better as she gazed at him.

Peter then did something that he had never done before. He kissed a girl. He kissed Alex with all the feelings he had kept bottled up inside him. At first Alex was surprised. Normally, she was the one who had to enforce the physical contact…but now, now was a different matter! Peter was allowing his hands to curve around the back of her head.

“I love you so much,” he said through his kiss. “You’re everything to me,” he panted. Alex tasted blood, both his and hers. It was so sweet, so wonderful. Peter’s heart felt as if it would burst with happiness. He knew that he would never be happier than he was right now…

Just as these thoughts crossed into his mind, however, Alex went very still. He didn’t notice at first, but once he realized that he was the only one kissing, he paused. He pulled his mouth away from her, and stared into her eyes.

Blank eyes.


A/N: Okay guys, I'm kinda panicky. I don't think I'll be able to finish this before HBP comes out. I'm wondering how many people are still gonna read???? Review!

Chapter 33: Dead and Born / Orin
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Chapter Thirty-Three~*~Dead and Born/Orin


Peter frowned in confusion. What was wrong with her? He gave her a little shake. Her face was pale, and it was as if she had fallen asleep with her eyes open…

“Alex?” he said uncertainly. At first he smiled, knowing that she was playing a joke on him. “Alex, what’s the matter?”

Silence.

“Alex, come on, don’t play around like this, it isn’t funny. We’ve been through an ordeal…” he said. But as he said this, his heart gave a clenching lurch. As he held onto her shoulders, his fingers clasped ice. It was if he was holding a stone statue. But then, as if to prove that she was not at all stone, her legs gave way. Her knees buckled, and she dropped to the ground.

Dead.

Peter’s eyes stared forever at the spot where Alex’s face had once been, void of emotion. His hands twitched, clasping thick air, trying to strangle the truth from the nothingness in front of him. This wasn’t truth. This was a joke. A very, very bad joke. His eyes twinkled with laughter at the joke. His lips parted, letting out a heart-twisting laugh. It was a laugh laden with emotions that should not be mixed, emotions that should not be felt by mere humans.

Only the devil should feel such pain…only the devil would have the capacity to feel Peter’s pain. Peter’s pain. Peter’s undeniable, hilarious pain.

Pain.

Peter’s knees crumpled under the weight in his heart. They slammed into the merciless soil. His breathing began to quicken. The smile died from his lips…just like Alex had done. His fingernails clawed the earth, scratching it, trying to make it understand a fraction of what he was feeling. When it made no screams of agony, he pounded it with his fists. Still, it would not allow his anger to lessen.

His eyes darted around, taking in nothing of his surroundings. They darted in confusion, mixing with his shallow breathing to make him dizzy and light-headed. His head flopped around, and then, his eyes dropped onto Alex’s body. Alex’s dead body.

“Stop it…” he whispered. Nothing happened. Leaves crunched somewhere around him. Meaningless. Alex…Where had she gone? Dead…Alex…”ALEX!”

His fists pummeled the ground, making large, bloody indents. His knuckles busted on small rocks, but he didn’t care. He didn’t care about anything. His pain doubled, and turned into a fury he had never felt before. He had never been so furious that he wanted to kill. Now he did, and he knew he could do it with a smile on his face. He began to shiver, not with cold, but with anger, sadness, and confusion. His large, pudgy hands rested on either side of Alex’s face. He brought her lifeless lips to his, one last time. Again came the crunching noises. Peter looked up. It was Sam. He was standing there, wand held high, a triumphant look in his eyes, his Ministry robes flying about. He was the one who had killed her, Peter though. He took my Alex away…

“You’re going to die,” Peter muttered. It was such a soft utterance; he was surprised that the man heard.

“You can’t even light your own wand,” Sam said with a snort. Peter ignored this and stood up, shaking all over. His mind was black, his heart was black, but his eyes were red.

“You’re going to die,” Peter repeated. Sam shook his head slowly. He wondered why the man didn’t just kill him now. He saw a wand lying on the ground three feet away. His wand. He moved to pick it up, ignoring Sam. He didn’t even wait to see if Sam would stop him. His mind decided to quite working. He picked up the wand, and saw Sam looking at him. His face like that of a zombie.

“You can’t work the curse. You’ve never done it before,” the man said. Peter said nothing to this, but raised the wand in the air, his nerves had stopped, his breathing had stopped, his brain had stopped. The only thing that seemed to be working was his heart. And even so, only one emotion could be felt. Rage. “You have to really mean it.”

“AVADA KEDAVRA!” Peter screamed at the top of his lungs. The man was so surprised that he didn’t even raise his wand, or he didn’t care if he died. In fact, from the look in his hollow eyes, Peter wouldn’t be surprised if he had wanted to die. But whatever it was he was thinking, it was the last thought he had. The next second, he was on the floor, his face looking quite the same, except that now there was no blinking to signal to Peter that he was alive.

Peter showed no sign of having just killed a man. His face remained blank, almost as if the spell had backfired, and killed him instead. His shoulders moved in a slight shrug. Alex was dead. What did it matter? It didn’t. Then his eyes scanned the park, the swings, the moon, the man lying on the ground, struggling against chains…Alex’s chains. Peter smiled then…Alex.

He walked over to the man, and saw his eyes running around in his head, searching for any means of escape, having just seen his fellow Auror die. He had had no choice though…. Either he killed that little girl, or got killed himself. He chose the former. That Malfoy boy had a way with a wand that could make even the strongest will bend.

He looked up at the eyes of Peter Pettigrew. The boy had loved the individual that had just been murdered. And now he, Oliver, was going to die too. Never before had he seen a Hogwarts student kill somebody before. Moments ago, the idiot couldn’t even perform the light spell!

Well, he knew by experience…death can make one go…insane.

Those were Oliver’s last thoughts before Peter ended his life. Still showing no emotions, Peter walked over to Oliver’s lifeless body. Alex’s chains…she had conjured them to save his life. He pulled them lovingly off the body, holding them to his chest.

“You take creepy to a whole new level,” said a heavy female voice. Peter gave no reaction.

“What a shame,” said a slow, drawling voice. Peter was familiar with this voice, and so he turned. He saw Lucius Malfoy and Bellatrix Black standing a few feet from Sam.

“It seems, Lucius, that this boy has done our work for us…” Bella said slyly. Peter jerked up.

“What?” he spat.

“Well, Pettigrew, we came to kill these Aurors. They were becoming quite…bothersome. But, it seems you’ve already taken care of that for us,” Lucius explained. Peter looked at his victims, looking almost surprised to see them dead. Then he realized something.

“Aurors…why would they want kill us?” he asked. Bella walked up to him, and put her arm around him. Surprisingly, Peter made no objection, but stood up, looking around dazedly.

“Well, they’re Aurors! Are you really so simple as to think that Aurors are good?” Bella said with a laugh.

“I’m sure that’s what Dumbledore’s been telling you,” Lucius said, moving to lean against a nearby tree. “I’ll bet he tells you about how ‘amazing’ the Aurors are. ‘Come join us! We’re the good guys!’” he said, mocking an old man’s voice. “Really, Pettigrew. Do you really believe that?”

“Dumbledore is a good-” Peter began, but Bella finished for him.

“Liar. And nothing else. The world is not divided up into bad people and Aurors,” she said.

“Look at Heather!” Lucius said loftily. “She’s part of Dumbledore’s little group, but is she a good person?”

“No,” Bella said.

“No…” Peter agreed. “She was always nasty to Alex,” he muttered, frowning in realization. “They all were…”

“Exactly,” Lucius said, throwing Bella a smirk. Things were going exactly as planned…

“Do you really want to hang out with people who were mean to the only person you ever loved?” Bella said in a baby-like voice. Peter didn’t question how Lucius and Bella knew this, but shook his head vigorously. His consternation was slowly turning into anger.

“They never accepted her. Right up to the end…” he said forcefully.

“Right,” Lucius said. “And now…who killed her?”

Peter’s eyes lit up with realization. “Aurors…killed her. The Order shunned her. Dumbledore made her cry…he erased her memory!” he said with furious indignation.

“That’s right!” Bella said, thinking they already had their work cut out for them.

“And what have any of The Dark Lord’s followers ever done to you?” Lucius asked inquiringly. Peter thought…

“You tried to break Heather and Sirius up to get Heather to join the Death Eaters,” Peter stated.

“Only because you asked me,” Lucius lied. “And besides, we’ve already determined that Heather is a piece of scum.”

“Yeah...scum…” Peter muttered with anger. “They all are. But the Death Eaters…they’ve killed so many…”

“So have Aurors,” Bella said. “It’s a war, what can you expect?”

“Death Eaters killed Alex’s parents!” Peter remembered, his anger growing.

“How do you know that for sure?” Lucius said coldly.

“Alex got a letter,” Peter defended.

“From who?” Bella said. Peter shrugged.

“Did you ever wonder why it was never in the newspapers?” Lucius asked, giving Bella a grin. Peter frowned at this…he had never seen it in the papers.

“If Death Eaters had done it, as you say, Dumbledore would have wanted everybody to know it. But…if it had been an Auror, well, he couldn’t have put that in the papers now could he,” Bella said, now whispering into Peter’s ear. Peter’s brain was cranking hard. Dumbledore…this was all his fault. He didn’t stop to wonder on any of the gaps in Lucius’ and Bella’s story. He didn’t stop to think of why on Earth two Aurors would try to kill Alex. He didn’t bother to notice the fact that Lucius and Bella just happened to appear right after Alex died.
It was so much easier to believe them. Where were his friends in his time of need? Would they care if they knew she was dead? Probably not. They had never treated her right…and now they would never have the chance. They had never done anything for him. Never. Lucius had tried to help him break Heather and Sirius up, he remembered. Lucius was his friend. And now, Bella was comforting him when none of his other friends were. ‘Why weren’t they here helping him?’ his frazzled brain asked. He didn’t think it could be the fact that she had only died ten minutes ago and nobody could have noticed yet.

But Lucius and Bella noticed. And they cared. They were going to help him…

“Join us,” Lucius whispered tantalizingly. “Show your friends what happens when they don’t treat you right.”

“You don’t have to put up with them,” Bella said softly. “We can help you. We understand you like they will never understand you. Help us, Peter. Show them what you can do. Get your revenge,” she whispered, her black eyes, so like Sirius’, daring him to be all he could be. She had said the one word that would convince him. Revenge. It was the word he loved, craved. He would show his friends. He would show Dumbledore. They hadn’t trusted Alex.

“They always treat you like an underdog,” Lucius said. “You’re always the one being left behind. You know this.”

“Yes.”

“Show them what you can do. They trust you, Peter. In the end, they will see how powerful you really are…” Bella said softly. Peter nodded.

“I will. I’ll do whatever it takes. I want to become a Death Eater,” he said. Fire lit his eyes. Lucius and Bella nodded with satisfaction.

“You’ll spy for us,” Lucius said thirstily. Peter nodded. “Come, I’m sure the Dark Lord will want to see you first.”

“Yes, they will be sorry they treated her like that,” Peter whispered to himself. Then, prying himself from Bella’s arm, he walked over to Alex. He took her hand in his own. “I’ll show them…They’ll be sorry.” Then his eyes seemed to brighten, and a smile spread across his lips.

At that moment, there was a flicker when all that could be seen was the little boy everybody knew. Short, pudgy little Peter Pettigrew. The boy that followed Sirius, Remus and James around, admiring them. He was the Marauder that everybody questioned, his innocence rather alarming, and his lack of couth rather pitiful.

But if one watched close enough, they would be able to see that little boy fading away. Now, a new man was born in his place. This man was mean, traitorous, and slightly insane. His mind was bent on revenge, and his friends were of the past. Never again would he look upon the Marauders in admiration. Never again would he allow himself to be the outcast. Never again would he care about anything. Even the deaths of everybody he ever knew. He gave a slight grin as he felt the tiny part of him floating away. The past that had always been a burden.

His eyes closed in relief.

Peter Pettigrew, the Marauder, was dead.

Wormtail, the Death Eater, was born.


NEXT CHAPTER>>>ORIN

Sirius stuffed his hands in his pockets. His brow was coated with sweat. It had been a hard day at work. Sure, he loved what he did, but the training was murder! He looked around, and spotted the apparition point; a large area void of grass. It was quite a distance away, but he began to walk slowly to it.

Rubbing his tense neck, he grinned as his heart thudded in anticipation. He couldn’t wait to get home and see Heather…his fiancé. No sooner had these thoughts crossed his tired mind, than two Death Eaters appeared. He whipped out his wand.

“Put it down, Black,” came a thick, nasally voice. Sirius snarled as Theodore Knott approached. “Hoping we’d find you.”

“Really? Well, you have, now I’ll be leaving,” Sirius said. And without another word, he raised his wand up into the air. He brought it down swiftly.

“EXPELLIARMUS!” he yelled, but Knott was too quick for him.

“Protego!” he said, and Sirius’ spell shot back at him. He dodged it, but was unable to get out of the way of the next curse thrown at him by Rookwood.

“Serpensortia,” the man said, looking almost bored. A snake the size of a small elephant flew towards him, knocking him to the ground. Within seconds, the snake’s body was wrapped tightly around his own, stopping all movement. His lungs were being squished. His entire being was focused on breathing. He had to breathe…

“Not so tight, idiot,” Knott said, rolling his eyes at Rookwood. The snake then loosened its hold just enough so hat Sirius could breathe.

“How considerate of you, Knott. I always did love air,” Sirius said.

“Then shut your mouth, before I take that away,” he snapped. He sauntered over to Sirius, a grin spreading over his face. Sirius was overwhelmed by a feeling of hatred, then by a feeling of vulnerability. He struggled to keep his expression serene.

“What do you want? I’m late,” Sirius said with an air of somebody who was rather bored with the events happening around him. Rookwood let out a bark of laughter.

“What do we want?” he said. “What do we want? What do you think we want, idiot!”

“Join us,” Knott said through Rookwood’s laughter. Sirius feigned thinking for a split second, and then let out a string of curses, in which the answer “no,” could be clearly deciphered. Once Sirius had finished, both Death Eaters were looking furious.

“Slicendocia,” Rookwood said angrily. Sirius felt then as if his entire face was being pelted with tiny bits of glass. He thought his head would split. He expected blood to pour down his face, but the spell would not be so merciful. It would not let some of his anguish eek out through the blood. Sirius looked perfectly fine, except that his face was screwed up. He tried with all of his might to hold in the yells he wanted to let loose. He would not give them that pleasure, however. He would not let them see his agony.

“Oh, he’s a tough one,” Knott said with satisfaction. “Very well, let’s see what he makes of this,” and he raised his wand again. Sirius tried to cover his fear. What would they do next? Rookwood looked eager. Knott began walking over to Sirius, shaking his head slightly.

“You asked for it,” Rookwood said, all but rubbing his hands together in delight. “You asked for it, Blood Traitor.”

“Quiet, Rookwood,” Knott hissed, but he was also smiling. Sirius waited with baited breath, staring Knott straight in the eye, showing his courage. He was silently telling him that if this snake had not been holding him, he would be ripping their throats out right this very moment. Knott looked far from intimidated, however, having the wand in his hand, inches from Sirius. He lifted it and laid it softly on Sirius’ temple. Then he bent his head close, so that his mouth was inches from Sirius’ ear.

Sirius could feel the man’s disgusting breath on the side of his face. But that became the least of his worries as Knott said his spell.

“Memor Fratacious Lococium…” he whispered softly.

The next few moments were Hell as Sirius had never experienced. His pain was indescribable. His voice, so traitorous, began to shriek and cry in decibels Sirius didn’t think humanly possible. His entire brain was on fire. It was being wrapped tightly in barbed wire. His memories were being shredded.

He was going crazy! He was going to die here, thank god. He knew he would die soon. His mind was rolling around in his head, screaming its own screams, pins and needles stabbing it non-stop. His eyes rolled around wildly, searching for any means of escape. Any means of suicide, homicide, anything that would free him.

Who was he? Where was he? He didn’t care. He knew only that in seconds his life would end. And he couldn’t wait.

“Protego!” yelled an unfamiliar voice. It was a silky, ghostly voice. Sirius’ pain stopped, he dropped to the ground then, thinking he must be dead now. The snake was no longer wrapped around him, he knew that much. His whole body ached. The only outward sign of his pain, however, was the crazed look in his eyes. He looked up, trying to see his savior. The whole world was spinning, however. He stood up. Things began to focus slowly.

Sirius could see three men fighting. The two Death Eaters and another that he could only see the back of. All that he could discern was that the man had bright blue hair. Sirius thought he must be imagining that part. Also, he couldn’t see a wand anywhere. He must be imagining that too…

“RUN! RUN YOU IDIOT! APPARATE!” the man screamed in his rather high-pitched voice. Sirius needed no further enticement. Lifting his body up off the ground, he all but flew to the Apparition point.

“NO!” yelled Knott. “DIFFINDO!” Sirius didn’t know if the spell hit him. He was in so much pain at the time, added injury was nothing. He just kept on running. He leaped onto the Apparition point and in seconds, was gone.


~~~


Heather smiled softly as the sun went down. Sirius would be home soon. A soft, July breeze blew past her. Sipping on her tea, she watched the shadows grow, taking in the world. Things couldn’t be better, she thought. Lily and Alice were coming along well, their baby’s due anytime now, and James and Frank couldn’t be more pleased. Peter, on the other hand, was strangely quiet. She supposed it was because Alex had moved away. It was strange to her that Alex never said goodbye. And why hadn’t Peter just gone with her? He had told her that Alex had wanted some new scenery, and had moved to America.

Her shoulders gave a slight shrug. He had been so distant with all of them, she wouldn’t be surprised if that wasn’t all the truth. She thought that maybe he might be hiding something. She wasn’t going to let it bother her though. When she mentioned that he move to America with Alex, she thought that Peter might have attacked her, had Sirius not been standing a few feet away. So she and the rest of the Order let the ordeal drop.

Still, James had been heard whispering about how he suspected that Alex had broken up with Peter. They all knew how Peter had adored her. It explained his odd behavior, and why he didn’t go with her. Heather felt pity, but wasn’t surprised. She had known Alex would eventually break up with Peter. They were just too odd a couple.

Throwing off those thoughts, she smiled at her life with Sirius. Things were perfect. They were engaged…. When she had told Lily and Alice in a voice hoarse with excitement, they had both shrieked with congratulations, pulling her into a huge hug. They hadn’t set up a date yet, but had discussed it on occasion. Perfect…her life was perfect….

Too perfect.

A loud bang met Heather’s ears. She leapt off of her seat on the porch. Her tea clattered to the ground, and within seconds her wand was out. Silence reigned supreme, and her ears pounded with the density of it. Then a high-pitched voice spoke from right behind her.

“Hello, my dear,” it said cheerily. Heather jumped and spun around. For a second, she saw nothing, but then looked down. There was a little man standing before her. He was at least a foot shorter than her, and was the most bizarre thing she had ever laid eyes on. His eyes were a bright orange, clashing wildly with his blue, waist-length hair. He had on odd, baggy black pants and a crisp, white button-up shirt. Heather’s first impression was of a very short genie. His eyes glittered, and he appeared to be nearing his sixties.

Her heart pounded…this was familiar! Her dream! It actually had been real! She took a deep breath, staring at the little creature… He smiled up at her, and it was this that stopped her from hexing him on the spot. “Erm…hello?” she said uncertainly. “Who the hell are you?”

“Hmmm…rushing into things, as usual. You really need to slow down. There is plenty of time,” he said wisely. Heather was taken aback. Her eyes widened. They stood there in silence for several moments. It felt like an eternity before the man nodded. “See? You learn well. You always did,” he said with satisfaction. “You need to take your time.”

“What do you mean, ‘I always did?’” she said in exasperation. “You don’t know me!”

He grinned and nodded at this. “Yes…yes of course,” he muttered. His tone of voice was one of somebody trying to soothe a five-year-old. Then he walked over to her spilled tea, and with a wave of his hand, the tea cup flew into his outstretched palm, filled with tea and steaming. He took a sip and sighed. He closed his eyes, apparently savoring its taste. “Delicious.”

“How did you do that without a wand?” Heather asked. She almost rolled her eyes at herself. Here was a little man on her porch, drinking her tea and telling her that he knew her, and that was the question she decided to ask? “What are you?” she amended.

“I’m the reason cousins shouldn’t marry,” he said with a smile. He chuckled to himself, apparently pleased with his own sense of humor. She stared.

“What’s your name?” she said, in another attempt at finding out his identity.

“I don’t have one,” he said, examining the tea with more concentration than necessary. Heather did a slight double-take.

“I beg your pardon?” she said snippily.

“I don’t have one, my dear. I have many!” he explained. Heather didn’t think it an explanation. It in fact confused her even more.

“How can you have more than one name?” she said.

“I’m a free spirit. To name one, is to lock one in a cage. To give a name to something is to confine it to one purpose. I will never be condemned to such a torture. I change my name when I see fit. I change it to go with my mood, with my feelings. To give me just one name would be utterly useless, for within a day, the name would not fit me anymore. I would grow out of it!” he said merrily, his voice growing rather squeaky with excitement. Heather was speechless, trying to understand.

“So your name changes all the time?” she asked, trying to clarify.

“That’s a very close-minded way of putting it, but yes,” he said. His white teeth flashed in a wide smile. Turning back to the tea, he went to sit on one of the plastic chairs on the porch. His feet barely touched the ground. “Today,” he said with great meaning, “my name is Orin!”

“Orin,” Heather said, relieved she finally had something to call this absurd little man. “Alright. Now what do you want, Orin?” Orin’s whole face changed at once. Then he turned slowly towards Heather. He had tears in his orange eyes, startling her. He stood up to his full, but still considerably short, height.

“I’m afraid I bring ill news, my dear,” he said sadly. “Come, sit.” Heather rolled her eyes.

“Just tell me!”

“Patience. Be patient. Take your time,” he whispered. “Sit.” Heather sat grumpily.

“Now, Heather…” he said, taking her hand in his. She jerked it back.

“How do you know my name?” she asked quickly. He ignored her.

“I’m afraid to tell you that Sirius is not all that you think he is,” he said. Heather frowned at this. How did he know their names? She was completely freaked out.

“What do you mean? How do you know us?”

“Sirius has been rather hasty in his decisions…decisions that I’m afraid he has not cleared with you,” he whispered.

“What are you talking about?” Heather said, narrowing her eyes.

“I mean to say, Sirius has joined the Dark Lord…”

“What?!” Heather said, and then she began to laugh loudly. This little man was insane!

“I joke not,” he said forlornly. “Look for yourself.” He shoved something into her hand. She looked down and saw some pictures. Inside the pictures were Sirius and a group of Death Eaters! She flipped through them. The first was of Sirius talking with them. Knott and Rookwood seemed to be asking him something. Then she looked at another picture. Sirius was smiling in one, and taking what looked like a large sack of gold. Then she saw the last one…Sirius and the Death Eaters were shaking hands!

“What is this?” she whispered, wondering how on Earth this little man had come upon these.

“I took these pictures not too long ago. I can’t explain to you why I know this. But you must trust me…” he said softly. “I’m on your side. I’m trying to help you,” he said,

“No,” Heather said shortly. She stood up and grabbed the little man’s arm. “Get off of my property!” she yelled.

“Trust me,” he whispered. Heather glared at him. “Go before I curse you,” she whispered.

“Ask him where he has been. You’ll see. He will keep secrets from you,” Orin said.

“Impedamenta!” Heather said furiously, but by the time her spell reached Orin, he had gone with another loud bang.

A/N: Alrighty, I've decided on combining chapters *listens for cheering* so that I can get this done before HBP comes out!!! Only 29 days!!!! YAY

Chapter 34: Lies and Lost Trust/There Is Still A Way
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Chapter Thiry-Four~*~Lies and Lost Trust/There Is Still A Way


Sirius walked into the house and felt relief drench him completely. He was home. Looking around the living room, he saw nobody, and walked into the kitchen. Still there was no one. Thinking Heather must be asleep, he took the opportunity to see to his wounds. He gingerly pulled off his shirt, and held a washcloth under the sink. Wringing out the excess water, he placed it gently on his shoulder. He looked at it and saw blood. Wincing, he wondered if he should tell Heather about what had just happened.

He rolled his eyes at himself, of course he should tell her! Then maybe she could do something about the large cut on his back. Throwing the towel on the counter, he began to leave, but he heard the towel hit the floor with a splat. He turned back around, and decided that he must not have thrown it hard enough.

He picked the cloth up and placed it firmly on the counter. He turned to walk away, but he froze when he heard the cloth hit the floor again. His eyes narrowed, and he whipped around, pulling his wand out. Expecting a wizard of some sort, he was nearly knocked backward at sight of the creature sitting on the counter now.

A little man with bright blue hair was sitting cross-legged, his elbows resting on his knees. He was humming a little tune, blinking bright orange eyes at Sirius.

“What the…” Sirius stuttered, his wand still pointed half-heartedly at the thing. The little man then gave a large, cat-like smile. He jumped down onto the ground like a little kid, and then looked up at Sirius with tears in his eyes. “Wonderful, first Death Eaters, now I have dwarf genies?”

“Ah…so young…” the old man said, walking toward Sirius, his hand outstretched. Sirius backed away sharply.

“Don’t touch me,” Sirius said, uncertain what the creature was doing, looking so lovingly at him. “What are you doing in my house, where’s Heather?” he said angrily.

“She just got back,” the man said, ignoring his first question.

“Back? Back from what?” Sirius said, temporarily distracted. The man’s eyes filled with tears again.

“Back from her date,” he said. Sirius’ eyes widened.

“What are you on about?”

“Here…” the man said, apparently too choked up to speak. He held out his hand, suggesting Sirius take what was in it. Slowly, cautiously, Sirius obeyed. He saw that they were wizard photographs.

One was a picture of Heather smiling with a rather handsome looking man. The next was a picture of the two holding hands at a dinner table. Just when Sirius was about to blow a gasket, he turned to the next one…Heather was kissing another man!!!

“Where the hell did you get these?!” Sirius boomed, grabbing the man’s shirt and lifting him up off the ground.

“I took them…earlier,” he said, his voice getting high-pitched and choppy. “I’m sorry, but you had to know.”

Sirius wasn’t sure what to think…what were these? And more importantly, who was this little man? Sirius voiced the latter.

“I’m me,” the man stated simply. Sirius gritted his teeth, trying desperately not to choke the life out f him. Thinking he might be more cooperative if he set him down, Sirius slowly loosened his vice-like grip.

“What is your name?” Sirius asked then. The man’s eyes lit up, as if Sirius had asked a most wonderful question.

“I don’t have one!” he said with glee. Sirius stood in silence for a moment, and then closed his eyes for a long moment. This little creature was trying his patience.

“What do you mean…you don’t have one?” Sirius asked. The man chuckled, worsening Sirius’ mood. “That’s not helping.”

The little man nodded and stopped laughing. “I never could get you to slow down. Why do you always want things to move so quickly?” he asked Sirius, a fond smile on his face. Sirius ignored him, staring at him until he spoke again. “Very well… you may call me…Akeem!” he said. Sirius got the odd impression that the man had just pulled a name from nowhere.

“Your name is…Akeem?” Sirius asked, raising a brow. The man shook his head merrily. “What do you mean, shaking your head?! What is your name!”

“I never said I had one. I said that you may call me Akeem, not that it was my name!” the man pointed out, his eyes sparkling with bemusement.

“Right…well what do you want here, Akeem?” Sirius said, taking deep breaths and clenching his fists.

“I want what anybody wants…to see that right is done in this fast-paced world,” he said, very much like a ‘Miss America’ contestant. “I wanted to show you that your bride-to-be is not all that you think…”

Sirius grew furious. “Heather would never cheat on me, you lying scum. Get out of my face, before I curse you into a thousand pieces.”

“Very well, Very well,” Akeem said, throwing his hands up in surrender. “I’ll go. By the way, that’s a nasty cut you’ve got on your back,” he whispered, his eyes gleaming once again. Sirius shrugged. “Do you plan on showing it to Heather?” he asked, twitching slightly. He seemed almost nervous.

“If I do, it’s none of your business. In fact, everything about me is none of your business!” Sirius said, rolling his eyes at the bizarre happenings of tonight.

“I wasn’t trying to meddle. I was just thinking…if you told her, she might get worried about you. Or she might try and make sure no more Death Eaters attack you by going to her cousin…” Akeem said slyly, a smile growing on his face as he watched Sirius work this out in his own mind.

Sirius ignored the fact that Akeem obviously knew about Lucius…. All he was focusing on was the fact that Akeem might be right. If he told her, would she confront Lucius about not keeping his promise? She would certainly worry. There was no need to tell her. If she knew, she might do something irrational. He nodded to himself, and was too caught up in his own thought to see Akeem’s own nod of satisfaction.

“Well, I’ll be taking my leave. I’ll just let you keep those pictures then…shall I?” he said, and within seconds, he had popped out of sight.

“Dear god…I’m going insane…” Sirius muttered staring numbly at the spot Akeem had been seconds ago. He heard footsteps then, and jumped. He decided quickly that he wouldn’t tell Heather about the fight with the Death Eaters. He hurried to grab up his shirt, and slipped it on just before she entered the kitchen.

“Oh…you’re home!” they said together. Heather smiled, though it was a strained one. Sirius quickly shoved the pictures in his pocket, clearing his throat.

“Have a good day?” they asked in unison.

“Fine, yours?” they both hedged as they said this simultaneously. Something was definitely wrong, they thought.

“It was a rough day…loads of training…and stuff…” Sirius said, thinking about the pictures now burning in his pocket. They were obviously fakes…that little man had made them…but they looked so real…and why was Heather acting so strangely?

“Yeah….There was three cases of werewolf bites today. They were all by the same werewolf. Three teenagers were apparently trying to see how close they could get to it…” Heather said, trailing off into silence. Sirius was definitely hiding something from her…surely those pictures of Sirius and those Death Eaters weren’t real…surely! But they looked so genuine…

“Sounds familiar,” Sirius said, in an attempt at humor. Heather laughed softly, shuffling her feet. Then she spotted a bloody rag on the ground. Her face immediately hardened and became fearful.

“What’s this?” she asked, almost accusingly. Sirius looked like he had been shot. Heather waited for his answer.

“Oh that…” Sirius said. Heather didn’t miss the way his eyes darted around the room for inspiration. “I got a cut…from training today,” he said. “It’s nothing.”

“I’m sure,” Heather said, pursing her lips. Sirius watched this action and couldn’t help but think, ‘were those lips kissing somebody else today?’ Jealousy rose in him like a monster, and he felt immediately furious.

“So did you meet anybody else today?” Sirius asked. The look on her face was enough to convince him she was most definitely hiding something from him.

“Why do you ask?”

“I just do. Did you?” he said harshly. Heather’s palms grew sweaty. She could just tell him…but why was he acting so angry? It was almost as if he knew, and was angry at her for it. She decided to tell him.

“Well, in fact, I did see somebody,” she said.

“Who?!” Sirius practically yelled in her face. Heather was so shocked she only stared. What was wrong?!

“I’m not sure,” she said.

“Didn’t bother to get his name, did you?” Sirius asked, his eyes narrowing.

“No, his name was Orin, I think,” she said uncertainly, remembering how the little man had said he hadn’t had a name….

“Orin,” Sirius said, bile filling his mouth as he said the name. He would find the bastard and kill him.

“Sirius…what…” But Sirius didn’t let her finish. He merely walked past her, his fury bubbling over. The pictures in his pocket burned into his skin. Heather watched his back in amazement, but that’s when she saw it. Blood. “Sirius, you’re bleeding!”

Sirius ignored her.

“Sirius!” she yelled, furious now. Why was he acting this way? “Why on Earth are you bleeding?”

“None of your damn business. If you want to keep secrets from me, then I’m going to keep secrets from you!” he said, his teeth bare. He then stormed out of the room. Heather winced as she heard the front door slam.

Standing in the middle of the kitchen, she allowed it to roll over her. He was mad because she didn’t immediately tell him about Orin? That didn’t make much sense…Why would he care so much? And why was there blood on his back? He had just openly admitted that he was keeping secrets from her. She walked into her room and opened her dresser-drawer. She pulled out the pictures Orin had given her. She stared at them, seeing Sirius receiving gold from a Death Eater. No…she couldn’t believe it. Sirius spent his whole life fighting Voldemort! He wouldn’t just up and join him! Unless there was something she didn’t know...

The thought of the blood on Sirius’ back stained her memory. She remembered him telling her that if she could keep secrets so could he. But what were his secrets? Should she believe Orin? She buried her head in her hands, confusion washing over her.

~~

Sirius walked around outside, shuffling his feet along the sidewalk. He pulled the pictures out of his pocket, his eyes glued to them. He watched as Heather kissed the handsome man. She looked so happy. Fury rose inside him, and with a roar, he ripped the picture in half. He then threw it in the dirt and kept walking.

What was going on? Should he believe Akeem? Things certainly seemed to be fitting into the right spots. His story was making sense. Why else would Heather be so uncomfortable? And she had even admitted to meeting a man today. She had seemed really reluctant to tell him…. But what if that man was not what Sirius thought him to be? Was Orin the man in the picture? He couldn’t be certain.

He was so caught up in his thoughts that he nearly ran into something. Looking down he saw Akeem standing there, examining his nails.

“You!” Sirius said furiously. “I have questions!”

“Of course you do!” Akeem said brightly, his orange eyes darting up keenly. “And I shall answer them. The time is right.”

“Yeah, great,” Sirius said quickly. “What’s the name of the man in these pictures?”

“Has Heather told you about the man that came to see her earlier?” Akeem said, ignoring him.

“A little,” Sirius said impatiently. “Now answer me!”

“I don’t recall his name,” Akeem said unhelpfully.

“Does ‘Orin’ ring a bell?” Sirius said, his heart dangling on a string. Akeem smiled then, his eye filling with tears at the same time. He looked happily heartbroken, if that made any sense. Sirius couldn’t keep up with this change of emotions, and his mind reeled. What was going on?!

“Yes…’Orin’ does ring a bell…” Akeem said sadly. Sirius’ whole world deflated, and Akeem watched in misery.

“So it’s true then?” Sirius asked nobody in particular. But since Akeem was the only one present, he nodded.

“It’s truly a shame…” Akeem said, wiping tears away from his wrinkled face.

“Why do you care? And you never explained how you knew!” Sirius said, realizing this. Akeem nodded.

“I know because that is my purpose here,” Akeem said. “I’m supposed to make sure that right is done,” he finished, and for once, he wasn’t lying.

“So you’re some kind of vengeance demon, or something? Why are you looking so forlorn,” Sirius said, his voice sounding as if it was taking all his effort to keep it steady.

“Because you will never know the great joy you are supposed to,” Akeem said. Sirius was even more confused by that remark, and when he turned around to inquire, then man was gone.


There is Still A Way


Sirius returned late that night and found Heather asleep, sitting upright in a wooden chair by her desk. Her breathing was soft, and her neck was at an uncomfortable-looking angle. Sirius’ heart did somersaults like it always did around her, but this time, it landed hard with a painful thud. He walked over to the chair, and lifted her out of it. He carried her to the bed, and laid her on it. She didn’t stir, but slept on.

Sirius shook his head. What on Earth was happening to them? They were supposed to live happily ever after! And now Heather was cheating on him? Something wasn’t right. Things didn’t add up. There was just something fishy about a four-foot man with blue hair coming and breaking them up. He rolled his eyes at the absurdity. They needed to talk. He wanted to wake her, he wanted to talk now. But he saw her resting so peacefully, and decided not to disturb her slumber.

He was nearly out of the room, when a pile of moving pictures caught his eye. He stopped and looked at them. They were scattered across Heather’s desk, along with other papers. Sirius picked up the closest one and stared in shock. It was a picture of him, smiling as he took gold from a Death Eater!

“What in the hell!?” he roared. Heather awoke with a start, reaching around blindly for her wand. She opened her eyes and saw Sirius standing there, holding the pictures. For an eternity they stared at each other. Heather’s first instinct was to keep them from him, ashamed that she had kept them. But as she thought about it, she decided to hold her tongue. She sat still, waiting for him to do something, say something.

“What….Where…” he stuttered, too shocked to form discernable sentences. “Who gave these to you?” he finally managed. Heather decided that hiding this from him would be stupid. There was no reason to, and she didn’t believe it anymore anyways.

“A little man named Orin gave them to me,” she said firmly. Sirius stared.

“Orin,” he said, his heart breaking. “He is…?”

”I have no idea. I told you that already. He showed up on my porch before you got home. He gave me those pictures, and said that you had been dealing with Death Eaters,” she explained. Sirius was furious again, and then suddenly very ashamed. He was an idiot.

“Is this Orin?” he asked, pulling out one of the pictures from his pocket. He pointed to the man who was holding hands with her. Heather’s eyes widened as she took the picture from him.

“Where did you get this?” she asked in amazement.

“A guy named Akeem,” Sirius said, shaking his head at the odd memory. Slowly things began to fall into place.

“You know this isn’t real, right?” Heather asked, looking at Sirius. Sirius blushed.

“I do now…I didn’t a little while ago,” Sirius admitted. Heather nodded. That explained why he had been so mad.

“So you thought I was cheating on you?” she asked, her voice hoarse.

“You thought I was a Death Eater,” Sirius pointed out in defense. Heather leaned back, nodding.

“Sorry,” they both said together. Then Sirius laughed, and went to sit on the bed beside her. Heather smiled, giddy with relief. But as she snuggled against Sirius, she frowned.

“What on Earth was that whole thing about?” she asked, thoroughly confused.

“Well, Akeem wanted us to break up, I think,” Sirius said. Heather nodded.

“Yeah, whoever he is, and Orin too,” she said. Sirius nodded, running his fingers over Heather’s arm.

“Now the only question is why they would want to do that?” he said. “What would be in it for them if we broke up?”

“I don’t know. Orin was a little insane if you ask me. He kept saying weird stuff about time, and acting like he already knew me,” Heather said. Sirius froze then.

“That sounds an awful lot like Akeem,” he said, leaning up to look Heather in the eye. “What did this Orin character look like?” he asked suspiciously. They were staring at each other, trying to read the other’s thoughts.

“He had bright blue hair,” she said watching Sirius’ face.

“And orange eyes?” Sirius asked. Heather nodded fervently, also sitting up.

“He said something about never having the same name. I’ll bet you Akeem and Orin are the same person!” Heather said in realization.

“Exactly,” Sirius said angrily. “And whoever he is, the next time I see him, I’m going to…”

“Oh, whatever it is, I’m not at all sure I’ll like it,” said an anxious voice from the corner. Heather and Sirius looked over to see the little, blue-haired man standing there, his hands folded meekly in front of him. His orange eyes were downcast.

“You!” both Heather and Sirius yelled. Sirius leapt off the bed, his arms outstretched. The next second, Sirius flew back onto the bed, nearly landing on Heather, who stared in surprise. Orin had more power than they knew!

“Please don’t be angry with me,” he said somberly.

“Angry? I’m furious!” Sirius said.

“Why did you do that to us?!” Heather said, her eyes narrowed.

“I am sorry. But I had to,” Orin explained.

“And just why did you have to?” Sirius asked, his face taught with barely contained anger.

“I’m afraid I can’t tell you. But you will know…in time…”

“If you say ‘time’ again, I’m going to hex you,” Heather said, annoyed. Orin smiled.

“Very well. Now, my plan has failed. All I can do now is ask that you two part and never see each other again,” he said simply.

“No!” Heather and Sirius yelled simultaneously. Orin’s eyes filled with tears.

“Then more heartache will befall you both,” Orin said.

“What are you on about?” Sirius demanded.

“When the time comes when you two must part…it will be painful…”

“Why would we have to part?” Heather asked, uncertain. “You don’t know what you’re talking about!”

“Ah, but I do, my dear. You see, I understand much more than you do, and you won’t fully understand until…oh…about sixteen years…” Orin explained, a dreamy look crossing his face.

“You’re off your rocker,” Sirius muttered. Orin nodded.

“Thank you,” he said, looking flattered. Sirius rolled his eyes.

“So you’re saying that we’re going to part, and you’re just trying to ease the pain?” Heather said, trying to understand a little bit. Orin nodded. Heather’s face fell.

“Don’t believe a word he says,” Sirius said, seeing Heather’s face. “He’s crazy.”

“That I am, but I know my future, and I know yours,” Orin said, suddenly becoming very, very serious. His whole face hardened. “The time will come when all is lost. You two will be forced apart, and it will be painful.”

“But…why will we be forced apart?” Heather asked.

“I cannot tell you. That is risking too much, I wish there was a way but…” Orin broke off, his face suddenly growing bright again. His face burst into a true smile. “Wiat! There’s still a way! Yes! Yes! Why didn’t I think of this before! Oh, this is all quite wonderful!”

“What are you talking about?!” Sirius said, exasperated. Orin looked shocked to see that there were other people in the room. “Now, you must listen carefully. Very, very carefully. Especially you, Heather. If you do not hear me out, you’re relationship will end in a matter of months.”

“He’s crazy!’ Sirius blurted.

“Shh!” Heather said urgently, leaning in to hear. “What are you saying, Orin?”

“There will be a time, Heather, when you believe all is lost. You believe there is no hope. You will have thought of every way out, trying to think of some method to save your love. But when you have realized that there is nothing you can do, you will have a serious talk with yourself. I’ll find you when this happens…. There is still a way to save you both…it will take time…but there is still a way for your love to last…”

“Get out of my house. You don’t know what you’re talking about,” Sirius said, standing up again. Though he was looking less than eager to repeat being thrown upon the bed. Orin was ignoring him, and looking straight at Heather, who was listening intently.

“When all is lost…speak to youself….”

“Where?” she asked breathlessly.

“You’ll know. You will tell yourself…” he replied. His face was bright with glee, having found another solution to their problems. “Oh, I must find Broderick…” and before Sirius could attack him again, he was gone. Neither Heather nor Sirius moved a muscle.

“What do you reckon?” Sirius whispered. Heather raised an eyebrow.

“I’m hungry,” she said. Sirius laughed. “Honestly, I’m not quite sure.”

“I say we just forget about him. We’ve got enough on our plates to be dealing with little men with blue hair.”

“I suppose…” Heather said, standing up, but not looking completely convinced. “Hungry then?”

“Starved,” Sirius said, looking her over, giving her a very suggestive grin. Heather laughed.

“After breakfast,” she said firmly. Sirius tried to change her mind by closing the distance between them and pulling her into a blissful kiss. They broke away slightly. “Alright…” she said breathlessly. “Maybe breakfast can wait.” Sirius gave a growl of approval and moved over towards the bed.

“Sorry I doubted you,” he said between kisses.

“Same,” Heather blurted. That was the end of words. All that was left to say could be said in silence. But reality, it seemed, was being rather harsh on them.

“I hate to interrupt, but I have a bit of good news,” said a voice crackling with amusement. Heather nearly leapt out of her skin and Sirius gave a jump. They both reeled around to see Dumbledore standing against the doorframe, twirling his beard idly, and looking at a spot on the wall opposite him.

“It better be real good,” Sirius said gruffly, getting off of Heather. Dumbledore chuckled, looking at them then.

“I’d say it is. The child that will save us all is being brought into this world. Lord Voldemort’s own downfall is beginning. The universe as we know it is preparing to change. The prophecy is set in motion!”

There was a silence as Heather and Sirius simply stared in confusion.

Dumbledore nearly rolled his eyes in uncharacteristic exasperation. “I mean to say, Lily is having her baby!”






Chapter 35: He Wants Potter / I Spy
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Chapter Thirty-Five~*He Wants Potter/I Spy


Heather watched as James paced a hole in the hallway. His hands were folded behind his back and he played the part of a father awaiting his newborn child. Sirius chanced an amused glance at Heather, and they both stifled grins.

“Don’t you think you should give it rest, mate?” Sirius asked, rubbing a crick in his neck. James ignored him.

“Do you think it’s been long enough? I mean, how long does it take? All she has to do is…” James began, but then he turned red and green, looking very much like a sickly Christmas tree. Now all he needed were the ornaments.

“Hey, Prongsie, we know. You don’t need to go into detail,” Sirius said, wincing slightly. “Just chill out!”

“I’m sure she’ll be fine, James. Have a seat, please,” Heather implored. James finally sat. Heather was about to congratulate herself on getting him to sit still when he started tapping his foot on the ground. Sirius did his best to ignore it, but when his eyes began to twitch in rhythm with James’ foot, he drew the line.

“James!” Sirius said exasperatedly. “I would really hate for you to have to look at your baby through black eyes!” James grinned at this, and Heather gave a soft laugh.

“Hey guys, no fights without me!” said a cheerful voice. They all looked to see Remus standing in the hall, looking hesitant but happy. He had his hands in his pockets, and had actually gained some much-needed weight.

“Remus!” Heather said jovially, and went to give him a warm hug. He grinned at everybody.

“You look great! I see the job’s been working out nicely,” Sirius said, getting up to slap him on the back.

“Yeah, all thanks to you guys,” Remus said happily. “I really wanted to-”

“Don’t even thank us,” said James, coming up to stand beside them. “We owed it to you. We should be the ones thanking you!”

“For what? I never did anything,” Remus said modestly.

“How about we just call it even,” Sirius said, growing bored with the battle of appreciation.

“I would also suggest that,” said a new voice, crackling with merriment.

“Dumbledore!” James said, half in exasperation, half in relief. “Where have you been? We’ve been waiting…”

“Now, I’m afraid is not the time, James,” Dumbledore insisted. “Though I do have some delicate news that we must discuss.”

“Why don’t you tell us now?” Sirius asked stupidly. Heather rolled her eyes.

“Just let the grown-ups worry about that, dear,” she said in a coddling voice, patting Sirius gingerly on the head like a baby. Sirius tried to act angry, but couldn’t help the grin that spread over his face.

“Ha-ha, very funny,” he said, trying to gain some footing. “So anyways, if you don’t mind answering my apparently childish question?”

“Though childish, it is a good question,” Dumbledore said, his eyes twinkling as he watched the couple. Sirius took this time to stick his tongue out at Heather, who scoffed. “Ahem, the reason, Sirius, is because we don’t necessarily want this overheard.”

Sirius looked down the hallway, and saw nobody. “But Professor, there aren’t any…”

“People aren’t the only things with ears,” James said firmly, giving a nod to a painting hanging nearby. Its occupant was giving the appearance of sleeping, yet they could see his eyes opening and closing every few seconds.

“Right,” Sirius said, finally understanding.

“Now that we’ve settled that,” Dumbledore said, a hint of bemusement in his voice, “I would like to inquire as to your mental state, James.”

“It’s pretty…” James began, but at the sight of a healer coming his way, his words melted into an incoherent blubbering. Dumbledore understood, however, and laced his fingers together in amusement.

“Well,” the healer began a great smile on her face. She was about to finish and explain matters, but James didn’t seem to realize that fact.

“Is Lily alright? Is the baby alright? Did everything go okay? Are they sleeping? Can I see them? There weren’t any complications right?” James said in one breath. The healers eyebrows had raised higher and higher with each question, until she finally decided to let him answer his own questions.

“Come with me, Mr. Potter,” she finally said, sharing a knowing look with Dumbledore. James didn’t see this, however, and was practically shoving the woman down the hallway and into the room.

Sirius, Heather, and Remus hedged, also wanting to know if everything had went alright, but not wanting to infringe upon the Potter’s privacy. They didn’t have to wait long, however, as James came hurtling out of the room, tripping over his feet, and bellowing at the top of his lungs.

“IT’S A BOY! IT’S A BOY! I’VE GOT A BABY BOY!” he blustered, running to them, and grabbing them around the shoulders. “She’s okay! Everybody’s okay!”

“I’m not so sure about that,” Remus said, smiling. “I think he’s lost his mind!” he muttered under his breath. They all chuckled as they were dragged down the hallway.

“Mr. Potter, I’m going to have to ask you to keep your…excitement… to yourself!” the healer said, though she was smiling something fierce.

“Come look! Lily, I’ve brought them. I brought them just like you asked…is there anything else I can do? Thirsty? Hungry?” James said, looking as if Lily had just conquered the world.

“Yes, there is something you can do, James!” she said, smiling exhaustedly.

“Yeah?” James said eagerly.

“Sit down,” she said. James nearly knocked over a table in his hurry. Now he kept craning his neck to see the baby, until he finally got fed up with sitting, and went to stand by his wife.

“He’s so beautiful!” Heather exclaimed, holding Lily’s hand in congratulations.

“Don’t call my son beautiful!” James said, affronted. “He’s handsome. No son of mine is beautiful.”

Lily laughed softly, looking at the baby in her arms. She looked so different, Heather thought. She wasn’t the Lily as she knew her. Lily was a mother now…a mother! It was so amazing to her.

Lily stared at her child, amazement filling every particle in her being. She had created a life. That had been growing inside of her for nine months, and now, she was seeing him. Her son….She looked up at James, and saw that he was staring at her with such an expression as she’d never seen in him before.

“We made that, you know,” he said, brushing a piece of red hair out of her face. Lily nodded.

“He’s got your hair,” she said, already seeing the small layer of black hair on his small head.

“He’s got your eyes,” James pointed out, grinning ear-to-ear. “I’ve never felt so…” he struggled for the right word.

“Terrified?” Lily suggested. James laughed.

“Yeah, that’s the one. But you know, he’s going to grow up to be great one day, aren’t you, little guy,” James said, feeling one of the baby’s hands between his fingers. “He’s so tiny!” he said.

“Yeah, most babies usually are, mate,” Sirius said, rolling his eyes.

“I think, perhaps, that I have never been more proud of any Hogwarts students than I am right now,” Dumbledore said, tears in his eyes. “This,” he said, putting a wrinkled hand on the baby’s head, “is the greatest magic of all.”

“Congratulations, Lily…James,” Remus said, warmth invading his eyes with a wave of emotion. Lily reached up and grasped Remus’ hand.

“I could never have asked for a greater group of friends…” she said, smiling wider than ever, she realized she was crying, and laughed. “Oh, I must look a mess,” she commented, trying to wipe away the tears.

“You’ve never looked more beautiful,” James whispered, almost to himself. Everybody grinned. Sirius was trying not to make kissy noises in the background. Dumbledore seemed to be reading his mind, and shook his head slightly. Sirius grinned sheepishly.

“What have you decided to name him?” Heather asked, also sensing Sirius was having trouble keeping quiet for this long.

“Harold,” James announced proudly, “Harry for short.” There was a general look of confusion. “What? It was my dad’s name!” he added defensively.

“Hey, does anybody know where Peter is?” Remus asked, realizing that he wasn’t there. Everybody looked at each other, sharing shrugs, and looking uncomfortable.

“He is having some difficulties,” Dumbledore said, looking forlorn. “I think it best to leave him be.”

There was along, uncomfortable silence, and Dumbledore decided to keep talking now that everybody’s good moods had begun to evaporate with talk of Peter. “I feel that now would be good time to inform you of the information I had mentioned earlier,” Dumbledore announced.

“What information?” Lily asked. “You never mentioned anything!” she said, holding Harry tighter to her chest and looking positively exhausted. James saw this and frowned.

“Can’t this wait, Dumbledore?” he said, with a meaningful look at Lily.

“James, I’m perfectly alright,” Lily said, looking slightly offended. “It’s not as thought I’m sick or something. “Go on, Professor.”

“I would, of course agree with you James,” Dumbledore said, seeing James still looking rather disgruntled. “But on this occasion, I’m afraid you must know with all due haste. The reason I was late to coming, was because I was visiting another pair of new parents.”

The whole room was looking confused. Then Heather’s eyes widened as she realized who he must mean. “Alice had her baby?! When? Why didn’t we know about it? Where on Earth is she?” The rest of the group were making similar remarks and looking impatiently at Dumbledore.

“They had Neville Longbottom last night. A happier baby you could never find! And the reason you weren’t informed, Heather, was simply because they didn’t wish it. Frank wanted complete silence, in fear of Voldemort hearing about the child and trying to come after it. What they do not realize, is that Voldemort already knows,” Dumbledore explained.

“How?” Lily asked, looking scared, and clutching Harry tighter than ever. James put a hand on her shoulder to comfort her.

“Voldemort is a great wizard,” Dumbledore said simply.

“Yeah, but he isn’t nearly as great as you!” James said, as though Dumbledore were crazy.

“Never underestimate your enemy,” Dumbledore said shortly, looking almost incensed. Then seeing James surprised look, he softened it by saying, “Please just believe me when I say Voldemort already knows.”

Everybody nodded their agreement.

“So what does this mean?” Remus asked, staring at Dumbledore with such intensity that he could have burned a hole right through him. Dumbledore sighed, sitting down finally on one of the wooden chairs the hospital supplied.

“It means,” he said, pinching the bridge of his nose, “that we are still no closer to figuring out which child he means to attack.”

“Will we know in time to hide whoever he picks?” Sirius asked tentatively. At this Dumbledore sighed louder than ever.

“Sirius, I’m not even sure if we will know until it’s too late…” he said. The moment he said these words, every color in the room seemed to melt away through the floor. They were stuck in a dark, dreary black place, and hope seemed to be a thing of the past.

Just then, however, the door to their room burst open. Severus Snape entered, his long greasy hair was swaying, and his face was bright with a smile.

“We know…” he panted, leaning on the doorframe as he caught his breath. Dumbledore stood up abruptly.

“What is it that you know?” Dumbledore asked. Sirius controlled the instinctive urge to pull out his wand.

“Let me catch my…”

“Tell me!” Dumbledore said. It was the closest to a yell they had ever heard from him. Snape looked surprised, but then nodded.

“Voldemort knows that they have been born,” he stated. When nobody held any objections, he continued. “The children…he wants to get rid of the potential threat.”

Dumbledore nodded. “Yes, I suspected as much. He didn’t hear all of the Prophecy; therefore he would go for Neville Longbottom. He is a pureblood, and in Voldemort’s book, the greater wizard.”

At this Snape gave a rather insane laugh. “That’s the thing, Professor. He hasn’t chosen the pureblood! He wants Potter!”


Next Chapter------------I Spy-------------


“I’m going to go put Harry down for a nap, and then we can begin discussing?” Lily said, holding a sleeping baby in her arms. James smiled down at her.

“Yeah, I’ll tell Dumbledore. He won’t mind waiting a few more minutes,” he said. Then he kissed her quickly on the forehead before walking into their kitchen.

“Is she ready yet?” Remus asked, raising his eyebrows.

“She just went to put the baby down, she’ll be right back,” James explained, leaning against the counter.

“You sure are lucky,” Peter said, giving James a watery smile. James nodded.

“That I am!”

“Listen, I’m sorry I couldn’t make it the other day…” Peter said uncomfortably.

“No worries,” James said, slapping Peter fondly on the back. Remus, however, was eyeing him suspiciously. Heather and Sirius both wore looks of pity. Dumbledore, however, wasn’t looking at Peter, but at Remus. The look in his face was quite unfathomable. What was he thinking?

Remus noticed Dumbledore’s intent gaze, and looked back questioningly. Dumbledore said nothing in explanation, but was saved the trouble when Lily returned. “Sorry about that, everyone,” she said, walking over to stand next to James.

“Not a problem,” Dumbledore said, smiling. “I believe we all know why we’re here?”

Everybody nodded.

“Yes then. On to business…We were about to decide…” Dumbledore began, but he was interrupted for a second time by Severus Snape. This time, however, he was not only panting for breath, but as soon as he got into the room, he dropped onto the ground, nearly unconscious. Dumbledore looked suddenly very stiff. “Severus!” he said firmly.

“Snape?” Heather said, horrified. She had never seen him so badly beaten. He had a large gash on his face; both of his eyes were nearly swollen shut. He was shaking so badly, it was a wonder he could breathe.

“What happened?!” Lily said, rushing over to see the amount of damage done. When she saw his mangled face, she immediately looked away. Even James was looking concerned.

“Severus, you must tell me what happened. Have you led anybody to us?” Dumbledore said urgently. Snape shook his head.

“Professor…” he mumbled. Dumbledore saw his pain and immediately pulled out his wand. Within seconds, Snape was feeling better. Not even Madam Pomfrey could have done a better job bandaging him up. Dumbledore lifted him up off the ground. Lily rushed to help him, but Dumbledore’s strength was surprising, and he couldn’t have needed her help less. Snape was settled on the couch in seconds, and Lily bustled around to make some tea. It was the first time ever that none of the Marauders objected to Lily’s aiding him. They were all too stunned to say much.

“Now,” Dumbledore said again as they were all sitting in chairs in the living room. “You must tell me all that you can. Who did this to you?”

“It was Avery,” Snape said, sipping the tea. “He jumped me as I was going to give Voldemort fake news about their whereabouts,” he said, his eyes spitting fury in Lily and James’ direction, as if this was all their fault. “He said Voldemort knew that I wasn’t really a true Death Eater, and he said that he was going to kill me. I barely escaped,” he said.

Dumbledore had never had such a blank look on his face than he did at this moment. He then looked around the room in realization, taking in each and every face. His eyes lingered a little longer on Remus than everybody else, making him uncomfortable and causing him to shift uneasily. “I hope,” Dumbledore said, “that you all know what this means?”

“We have a spy in our midst,” Heather whispered, seeing everybody in a new light.

The whole room was filled with such tension; the sharpest of scissors couldn’t have cut through it. People were scoping each other out, picking out possible spies. Remus was looking at Peter, Peter was looking at Remus, Heather was looking at her feet, and everybody else was staring at Dumbledore for guidance.

It seemed, however, that Dumbledore wasn’t quite sure what to do. He appeared to be thinking, making his decision. He was nodding to himself, and then, a few seconds later, he would shake his head, getting out a sigh. Peter was looking at Remus, his beady eyes controlled by rare thought.

Remus, perfect Remus. Always smart, always knowing what to do. He had yelled at Alex. He could remember that moment clearly. He had come in from the Hogwarts grounds, and had yelled at Alex, right before punching him in the face. He nodded.

“That’s it, I can’t take it anymore,” Peter said, standing up. His eyes were wet with tears. “I can’t hold it in much longer. I’m sorry Remus,” he said, nearly sobbing now.

“Peter…” Remus said, thoroughly confused and wondering what he’d done wrong.

“Don’t talk to me, traitorous slime! I know you were mad at us. Yes, it was horrible of us to keep The Prophecy a secret, but what you did in retaliation was horrible!”

“Peter, what are you talking about?” James said, frowning.

“What am I talking about?!” Peter yelled, becoming frantic. “I’m talking about Remus! I’m talking about his joining Voldemort to get back at us! He was so upset when he found out we’d lied to him! He went and joined Voldemort for a little revenge!!”

“You liar!” Remus said, standing up also, and yelling. Remus couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Peter was accusing him of joining Voldemort?!

“Don’t tell me to shut up! Don’t you realize what you’ve done? Lily and James’ lives are at stake! And now you’ve given away our spy? What’s next! I’ll bet that’s how Voldemort knew about Harry being born so quickly! It was you! You must have sent him a message!” Peter roared.

“Maybe you’re forgetting, Peter, but I’m not the one that was absent that day! How do we know that you weren’t reporting to Voldemort?” Remus screamed. Loud wails began to join the frenzy as Harry woke up. Lily jumped as if she’d been shot, and rushed to soothe her child. Peter looked as if he’d been slapped.

“Do you really want to know what I was doing?” Peter asked. “I’ll tell you,” he sobbed. Dumbledore was watching the whole thing wit such concentration. “You think Alex moved to America?”

There was a dead silence. Everybody was now watching; even Harry had silenced, as if he sensed the importance of this conversation.

“Well, I have news for you! SHE WAS MURDERED!” he screamed. Tears were flowing down his face now. They were real tears too.

Silence. A silence so piercing Heather wanted to cover her ears. All that remained in the room was Peters sobbing, and Remus’ choppy breathing. Peter, however, wasn’t going to wait around. He snatched up his coat, and ran from the house. Once outside, he wiped tears from his face.

Then he smiled. Just like clockwork….

“I…” Remus began, trying to think of something to say to that shocking bit of news.

“Do you have a fire?” Dumbledore asked. Lily nodded numbly, and pointed to the other room. Dumbledore went swiftly.

Nearly ten minutes passed before Dumbledore finally returned. His face was tearstained. “It’s true,” he admitted. “Alex is dead.”

Lily covered her mouth in horror, and sat down on the couch, holding Harry to her chest for comfort. James sat down beside her and pulled her into his side, squeezing her tightly. Snape’s eyes were darting around, slightly menacingly.

“How was she killed?” Remus asked. Dumbledore stared at him for a long time before answering.

“They don’t know. Remus, Heather, Sirius…I believe you should be going home now. I would like a private word with Lily and James.” Dumbledore lead James and Lily into their bedroom and closed the door. “Imperterbatus,” he whispered. The room was filled with a soft blue light, and then quickly returned to normal.

“What do you think?” James asked. “Who is the spy?” Dumbledore shook his head sadly.

“I know less now then I ever have,” Dumbledore admitted. “Moments ago, I was sure that somebody was leaking information. I thought I was sure who as well. But now…”

“Well, Peter’s story seems to be true enough,” James admitted

“Remus would never betray us!” Lily said defensively.

“Alice or Frank then!” James said. Lily rolled her eyes. “Oh yeah…I guess they wouldn’t give information about themselves, would they?” he said, realizing his stupidity.

“What about Snape?” Lily suggested.

“Yeah!” James said fervently.

“No,” Dumbledore said, even more fervently. “James, he is a spy for us, and you must learn to trust him...”

“Yeah, when Heather learns to play Quidditch, that’ll be the day I believe him…” James said, and then seemed to think of something. “What about Heather?”

“Heather the spy?” Lily said, frowning. “James, she is a perfectly sweet person!”

“Looks can be deceiving!” James countered. “Look at Snape! He’s a disgusting filthy slimeball, but he’s still on our side…I guess…”

“I’m not sure, but I don’t believe Heather is the spy. Look at her background. She has spent her whole past three years running away from being a Death Eater. Though she is still a possibility,” Dumbledore explained. They thought of the last person on their list of suspects.

“Sirius…” James muttered. “He would never betray me,” James assured. Lily agreed whole-heartedly.

“Are you most positive, James?” Dumbledore asked.

“I would put my life in his hands. I’ve already named him Harry’s Godfather. He’s the closest thing I have to a brother!”

“Sirius has always been there for us when we’ve needed him,” Lily said, nodding her head in approval. Dumbledore nodded slowly.

“I have realized his loyalty, and had suspected that this would be the outcome. Sirius is the only one we find that we completely trust.”

“I trust Heather,” Lily objected. James shrugged.

“I trust Sirius’ judgment. I don’t know Heather all that well, but Sirius obviously trusts her, and she has been through some sticky spots. Every time, she manages to come out having done the right thing,” James said, nodding his head in approval.

“Yes, but we need only one,” Dumbledore said. James and Lily looked at each other.

“One what?” James asked.

“I’ll explain everything soon. But first, you must decide whom you trust most,” Dumbledore said. “Is it Heather or Sirius?”

“I’ve known Sirius longer, and he’s saved my life on many occasions. I say Sirius,” James said. Lily nodded.

“I trust Heather just as much as Sirius…but I’ve known Sirius longer,” she said, shrugging her shoulders. Dumbledore gave a slight sigh of relief at having made a decision.

“Very well then. Sirius it is,” Dumbledore said.

“I’m still confused,” James said, frustrated.

“Lily…James…you have just chosen your Secret Keeper.”




A/N: Didn't have to wait too long for this chapter, did you?Oh well, this updating quickly thing is killing me! But I'm determined to get it all out before HBP comes out. Why did this story have to be so long?? *Walks off muttering, and rolling eyes*



Chapter 36: Pride and Prophecy / Alternate Endings
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Chapter Thirty-Six~*~Pride and Prophecy


“Honestly, I can’t see how any place could be safe from Voldemort,” Sirius said, looking doubtful. “I mean, come on! He’s not your typical bad-guy. He’s Lord Voldemort!”

“You’re vote of confidence means a lot, Padfoot,” James said sarcastically. Sirius shrugged his apology.

“I don’t mean to be pessimistic, but I…” Sirius began in amendment.

“Allow me to explain the situation,” Dumbledore interrupted, seeing that Sirius was only making matters worse. Sirius raised a brow, surprised to see Dumbledore so rigid. “I agree, Sirius that this is nothing to take lightly. Lives are at stake. Now, as I said earlier, I have found a place.” He waited to see if anybody had any further interruptions. When all was silent, he continued. “There is a cottage in Godric’s Hollow that I think will fit this occasion with precision.”

“Godric’s Hollow?” Lily said, confused. “But that’s a muggle village!”

“That makes sense,” James said, nodding. “Voldemort might not think to look in a muggle village.”

“Exactly,” Dumbledore said, nodding. Lily still looked worried, however.

“Is this just an ordinary cottage?” she asked, wringing her hands together.

“Yes, it is,” Dumbledore said. Lily looked frantic, so he continued, “now. I’ve yet to put any charms on it.”

“What kind of charms will you use?” Sirius asked, “and how come you guys are only telling me this? Why couldn’t Heather come?” The rest of the small group exchanged looks. It was apparent that James and Lily didn’t feel like explaining. So Dumbledore cleared his throat.

“I suggest we sit down. Lily? Could you make us some tea, perhaps?” he said, moving over to the small kitchen table, and basking rather mournfully in the sunlight now streaming through one of the open windows. Lily bustled around for a few minutes, rather frantically, while James and Sirius sat down awkwardly.

After what seemed ages, Lily finally finished the tea, and sat down beside James, an anxious look marring her composure. “Thank you, Lily,” Dumbledore said, taking his own tea and sipping it. It looked as if he was tasting a bit of bliss. Sirius didn’t see the excitement over it, it was a simple cup of tea! “Now, first, I think it’s safe to say that we make this small cottage unplottable.”

“Unplottable?” Lily said, frowning. “Oh! I’ve read about that!” she said excitedly.

“Yes, it makes the building invisible on the maps,” Dumbledore explained. Lily nodded enthusiastically. “Then of course, I’ll put a few charms so that Muggles don’t notice anything. If they see people walking out of a building that doesn’t look to be there, I doubt they’ll ignore it. So, I’ll have to protect it with some memory erasing charms.”

“And is that all?” Sirius asked, looking nervous now. Why did they want him here? Where was the rest of the group? Why couldn’t Heather come?

“No,” Dumbledore said gravely. “That is not all. We need one, final charm. The only one that really matters. I’m not sure if any of you have heard of it. The Fidelius Charm.”

There was silence, and then Lily let a soft gasp. James and Sirius, however, were still dumbfounded. “What’s the Fidelius Charm?” James asked.

“One of the strongest forms of magic,” Dumbledore explained. “But it needs to be done. Remember how I asked you who you trusted most? Well, for the Fidelius Charm, you will need a Secret-Keeper.”

“Secret-Keeper?” Sirius asked, uncertainly. Dumbeldore nodded.

“The Fidelius Charm is most complex. It needs to be done with such precision, any hiccup could cause a disaster. The Charm itself is the concealing of a secret in one person. In this case, Sirius. He will be the only one to know of the place’s whereabouts. Nobody else will be able to tell somebody where the place is. A person will only be able to find it if Sirius tells them where it is,” he said.

“That’s brilliant!” James said, smiling widely. “But...what about you? You know where it is!” he said, looking to Dumbledore.

“That is indeed true, but only because the Charm hasn’t been put in place. Right now, I could go and find it, but once the spell has been put into action, I won’t be able to find it anymore,” Dumbledore said, smiling with satisfaction.

“What about Alice and Frank? Will they go into hiding too?” Sirius asked, taking a huge gulp of his tea in nerves.

“Yes, they will go into hiding, but not so much as James and Lily. We already know that it is Harry that Voldemort wants, and not Neville,” Dumbledore answered. “They will not require a Secret-Keeper.”

“Wait...so let me get this straight. I’m here because you guys want me to be your Secret-Keeper?!” Sirius asked, trying to understand.

“Yes,” Lily said, unblinkingly. Sirius stood up, suddenly feeling terribly uncomfortable.

“Me? Me!” he said, almost outraged. “Why me?”

“Because you’re the one we trust!” James said. “If you don’t want to do it...”

“There’s nobody else?” Sirius interrupted, now sounding furious.

“I offered my services many a time, I assure you. But both Lily and James insist on you. I must say, that I do trust they’re judgement,” Dumbledore said softly.

“Do you realize who you’re talking to?!” Sirius said, his voice rising again.

“Yes, I’m talking to my best friend,” James said firmly. “I’m talking to my son’s Godfather!”

“I’m a Black! Sirius Black, don’t you understand? You can’t possibly...”

“Sirius, don’t even try and act like we give a damn about your surname!” Lily said, surprising them all with her furious tone of voice. “If you think we’d hold that against you, then you don’t know us very well. And we’ve known each other much too long!”

“Lily,” Sirius said, his eyes growing hot with emotion. “You don’t seem to realize. Your family is perfect. What you have is perfect. Your son, your house, your love for James. It’s so pure, so white. The name Potter deserves more respect than having me as Secret-Keeper. I don’t deserve such a thing! I would ruin this beauty with what I am!”

“Sirius...” James began.

“No! Don’t you see! I’m related to the people that are trying to kill you!” he said, absolutely horrified. “My own blood is trying to murder your son!”

“We know you’re not like that!” James said. “We’re not naive. We haven’t gone through school together without me realizing what your family has done!”

“Don’t you trust yourself?” Lily asked softly.

“I just can’t escape the fact that my own blood is behind all of this. It makes me feel...it makes me feel as if I’m the one doing the wrong. I feel poisoned,” Sirius said. “I’m a disgrace. I don’t deserve your respect.”

James put a firm hand on Sirius shaking shoulder. “Sirius, if Voldemort threatened your life, would you give him the location?” he asked, looking his best friend in the eyes.

“James, I would welcome death before I told. I would never betray you,” he whispered. It was the truth, but he just couldn’t stand the fact that he was a Black....

“I know that Sirius. Don’t tell me how you don’t deserve the honor. I’m the one that would be honored,” Lily said, pulling him into a hug. Sirius let a few tears roll down his cheeks.

“You’re the only one of the Marauders that truly understands Quidditch,” James said, a twinkle in his eye. Sirius nodded, grinning sloppily. “That makes you a Potter in my book.”

“Do you accept the position?” Dumbledore asked, quite pleased with Sirius. He had at first disliked the idea of Sirius as a Secret-Keeper. Now, however, he could see that they couldn’t have picked somebody better. Sirius was a true friend. An odd feeling of pride welled up within Dumbledore, as he watched Sirius wiping the signs of tears from his eyes. He didn’t doubt the boy’s loyalty to James and Lily. What he did doubt was Sirius’ confidence in himself.

Sirius gave a sigh, smiling. “Of course I’ll accept,” he said. “But you do realize what I am, and you still trust me?”

James rolled his eyes. “If I have to say that I trust you one more time, I’m going to make Snape the Secret-Keeper!”

“Alright, alight,” Sirius said hurriedly, shuddering at the thought of having the Potter’s lives put into the hands of Severus Snape. Dumbledore frowned in disagreement, but said nothing. “So what do I have to do? Cut frog livers during the full moon, while doing a chicken dance?”

“Something like that,” Dumbledore said, smiling. “I don’t think the specifics should be gotten into right now, however.”

“What will we tell the others?” Lily asked.

“They need never know of this meeting,” Dumbledore said firmly. “We will tell them, when the time has come, that we are going to take you into hiding. They won’t be told where. And they shouldn’t know that Sirius is the Secret-Keeper. In fact, they shouldn’t know that we even have a Secret-Keeper. Sirius, you must act oblivious to Lily and James’ whereabouts,” he explained further. Sirius nodded.

“Do you mind if I ask who you think has been spying on us?” Sirius asked tentatively.

“Yes,” Dumbledore said firmly. James, Lily, and Sirius exchanged looks.

“Well, when will we move?” James said, trying to break the uncomfortable silence that had now descended.

“Almost immediately,” Dumbledore said. Silence reigned again. Sirius thought of something however, and it troubled him.

“Dumbledore...Heather knows that I’ve come here. She’s going to ask what you guys wanted. Can I tell her that I’m Secret-Keeper?” he said. He felt very anxious. He certainly hoped he could talk to her about it. She would help him sort out his emotions. Dumbledore seemed to sense this, which was the only reason he didn’t immediately say ‘No.’

“Do you trust Heather?” he asked Sirius.

“With my life,” Sirius said devotedly. Dumbledore smiled.

“I myself trust her. I’ve watched her closer than you know. She is a Malfoy, after all. I needed to know if I had another potential Death Eater on my hands,” he said. “If it is alright with James and Lily, I think it alright if Sirius confides in her. I almost think it necessary,” he said.

“Why is that?” James asked, confused. “Why would it be necessary?”

“If Heather has a vision, and it’s about The Prophesy or something, then it would be better if she knew. That way she would know what to do. Where to go if something is shown to her, and so on,” it was Lily who explained this. Dumbledore nodded, smiling proudly.

“Very well. Everything is settled. I will think about when would be best to move Lily and James, and send you an owl. Expect it within a day,” Dumbledore said, speaking to Sirius. “For now, I suggest you go home, and sort everything out. I imagine this has been quite a day.” Then he turned to Lily and James. “And as for you two. I will need to stay and explain the procedures of the charm, as it’s very difficult.”

“Won’t you be there with us, though?” Lily asked. Dumbledore shook his head.

“No, I’m afraid that only the occupants of the house and the Secret-Keeper may be present,” he said firmly. James nodded. Sirius nodded, and then smiled.

“Alright, see you. Lily, James,” Sirius said, giving them each an uncharacteristic hug. “And...give my Godson a hug for me too,” he said proudly. Sirius started to walk out the door, when Dumbledore laid a long-fingered hand on his shoulder.

“Sirius...” Dumbledore said. “You did what was right. I’m proud of you.”



Next Chapter: Alternate Endings

Heather was waiting in the kitchen, tapping her foot anxiously. It had seemed urgent, whatever it was. They had needed Sirius for something very important. She couldn’t help but have hurt feelings. Why wasn’t she included? What if somebody was hurt? Was something wrong with Harry, Lily, or James?

Standing up, she gave an irritated sigh. She would find out soon enough. Sirius would come home and tell her everything...right? She began pacing the room.

Tyde walked in, purring loudly, and rubbing against Heather’s legs. “Hey, sweetums,” she said, picking the cat up, and coddling it like it was a baby. “Hungry?”

Tyde’s reply was to look up at her with his large, orange eyes. Heather dropped the cat as if it had been on fire. Orange eyes! She nearly ran to the other side of the room. Tyde’s eyes had definitely NEVER been orange. Goose bumps ran up and down her arms, even venturing to the back of her neck.

“Stay away from me!” she yelled at the cat. Tyde, looking innocent, began walking slowly towards her, keeping his gaze locked on hers the entire time. His whole body swayed with each step he took, and he was almost...smiling. “If you come once step closer, I’ll...I’ll throw this vase at you!” she said firmly, trying to keep her cool, even as she grabbed a vase off the kitchen table. The cat stopped, its smile seeming to grow wider.

Tyde slowly raise its paw in the air, and Heather followed by raising her arm into the air. “Don’t think I won’t!” she yelled. The cat put it’s paw firmly on the ground then. Heather threw the vase at the cat, who jumped neatly out of the way, landing itself on the counter.

Tyde opened his mouth wide and licked his lips.

“What have you done to my cat! Orin! I know this is you! Show yourself!” Heather was screaming at the top of her lungs.

“What’s wrong?” said a voice right behind her. Heather gave a scream of fright. She whirled around, pulled her wand out, and pointed it straight at Sirius’ face. He raised his hands in a show of peace. His eyebrow raised, and he looked around her, trying to see the cause of her distress. All he could see was Tyde sitting on the counter, now licking his paw.

“Look! Look at Tyde’s eyes!” Heather shrieked, pointing frantically at the cat. Sirius peered over the top of her head to see a normal looking Tyde, his blue eyes sparkling. Sirius shrugged.

“What about them?” he asked. Heather turned too.

“”Look! Can’t you se they’re...perfectly normal...” she finished, as she now looked at the cat. “No...no, just a second ago they were orange!”

“Rrrrright,” Sirius said, looking amused.

“I’m serious!” she said.

“No I’m...” Sirius began, but Heather glared at him.

“If you finish that sentence, I’ll hex you,” she said, but she was smiling now. “I promise you. His eyes were orange a second ago.”

“Okay, well...I don’t know what to say. I didn’t see any orange. I believe you though,” Sirius rushed to add, seeing the murderous look in her face. He decided to distract her. “I just got back from Lily and James’ place.”

That did the trick. Tyde and his eyes were completely gone from her thoughts. Her attention was focused completely on Sirius. “Here, come in the living room. Tell me everything.” Sirius allowed Heather to pull him into the living room, where they sat on the couch. Sirius lit a fire in the fireplace with a poke of his wand. Then he seated himself beside Heather. Slowly, he pulled her into his arms. She went with a sigh. The next half hour was spent by Sirius explaining the story, with Heather listening intently.

“But I just don’t feel...right...about this,” Sirius explained, finally having explained the story. Heather sat up, taking both of his hands into hers. She looked into his deep gray eyes, seeing some of her own pain about her family mirrored there.

“Sirius...I understand. I’m not just saying that either. I’m a Malfoy, which is just as bad, of not worse,” she explained. “You can’t imagine how strange I felt when I joined The Order. Sure, I was excited...but I was scared too. You were my strength though, because I knew we were going through the same thing.”

“I just feel like I don’t deserve their trust. I don’t feel good enough,” he explained. “I’m just so afraid...I can’t explain why...”

“I can,” Heather said softly. “You’re afraid because most of the Black family has followed in Voldemort’s footsteps. You’re curious. You wonder what is the great attraction? Why do they join him? Is it so wonderful? And then you’re terrified because you think such things. Because when you think those things you wonder if, one day, you’ll give in to some unknown temptation,” she explained.

There was a silence in which all Sirius could do was nod. He was looking flabbergasted. “It’s taken me years to figure out those emotions that you just described so simply.”

“The fact is, Sirius, that you are who you are. You’re not going to change. Some Death Eater isn’t going to take over your mind. People don’t just change into different people. You are who you are, and you should be as proud of yourself,” she said calmly.

“But I do wonder why my family joined. I am curious!” he said, frustrated.

“Curious enough to join him?” she asked.

“No,” Sirius said firmly.

“Would you ever betray Lily and James?”

“No.”

“Would you rather die than cause your friends harm?”

“Yes,” Sirius said, replying with as much ferocity as Heather presented the questions.

“Then what is the problem? You’ve just answered all of your questions. It’s alright to be curious. I’ve always wondered why so many people willingly join him. But it’s not because I want to, it’s just because...well, just because! It’s human nature to be curious.”

“It’s so much responsibility,” Sirius said, forlornly. “I’ve spent most of my life running from such a thing,” he said with a slight laugh. Heather kissed him softly on the mouth.

“I’ll always be here to help you,” she whispered against his lips.

~~~

The next day was spent rather lazily, being the weekend. Heather and Sirius had a late breakfast, and the whole time Heather kept watching their cat. Sirius found this quite amusing. He found it even more amusing to make hissing noises every time Heather walked past Tyde. She didn’t find it nearly as funny, practically jumping out of her skin the first time. Around noon, they were interrupted from their lunch by a peculiar tapping noise on the window.

Sirius got up and saw a beautiful snowy owl pecking on their window, a letter tied to it’s foot. Sirius opened the window as Heather walked up beside him.

“Dumbledore?” she asked as Sirius unrolled the parchment. Sirius nodded, and began reading the contents out loud.

“Sirius,

I’ve spoken with Lily and James, and together we have come to the conclusion that we should get this over and done with. Voldemort is not going to wait for us to move Lily and James to a safer place. We aren’t sure if he knows about the house they are currently living in. Voldemort has not tried to attack us here, so we think it safe to say that he doesn’t yet, which is odd. Perhaps the spy is either nervous about giving away our whereabouts, or Voldemort is planning something of which we know not.

Either way, we need to get them to a safer residence. Please meet them at Godric’s Hollow, tonight at eleven thirty. I have given them proper instructions, they will tell you what to do. You needn’t bring anything. Be punctual. And remember, nobody must know of this. The best of fortunes,

Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore”


When Sirius finished, he turned to Heather. She was looking nervous, but smiling all the same. “Don’t worry, Sirius. Everything’s going to be alright. Just wait and see,” she assured him. As she said this, a cold chill ran up her spine. She knew that she was lying to him. In truth, she felt that something was very, very wrong. Sirius shook his head.

“I guess so...” he muttered. She wondered if he had the odd feeling she did. “Want to go out or something? Being stuck in the house is driving me crazy,” he muttered. And so the rest of their day was spent roaming around, looking in shops, not necessarily buying, but just being together. Before they knew it, it had gotten late, and they headed home.

Sirius walked into their living room, and froze. Heather looked at him oddly. “What is it?” she asked him, waving a hand in front of his glassy, unfocused eyes.

“I thought I just saw...” he muttered to himself, but didn’t finish the sentence. No...it couldn’t be...he had seen a flash of blue. But that didn’t mean anything right?

“Sirius! Hello?” she said, nudging him. He jerked around.

“What? Oh...” he rubbed his neck uncomfortably. “I just saw a...well I dunno. I’m just tired...and stressed. I’m going to head over to James’. See if they need help setting up. Will you be okay here?”

“No, Sirius. I need you to babysit me,” she said, sarcastically.

“Aw...is wittle Heather scawred?” he said in a mock baby-voice, pinching her cheeks.

“Get off, you oaf!” she said, laughing and smacking his hand away. “Go to James’ house! I’ll finally be rid of you!” She saw a flash of nerves at the mention of James. “Sweetie, everything’s going to be alright,” she said for the hundredth time that day. “Go on. I’ll be waiting for you when you get back.”

This bit of information seemed to brighten his attitude. He gave her a sweet kiss before heading out the door. “Bye,” he called over his shoulder, sounding as though he was going to his own execution. Heather smiled fondly, shaking her head and sighing in contentment. She walked back towards the kitchen, thinking to do a little cleaning. She stared angrily at her cat, who looked at her with perfectly normal colored eyes.

“I’m not seeing things...I know your eyes changed...little devil,” she muttered, walking away, while still watching Tyde out of the corner of her eye. She was just about to get a cup from a cabinet above her head, when she felt an odd feeling, as if she were experiencing Deja Vu, but backwards. She stopped, frowning at the feeling. It quickly passed, but she still frowned, wondering what had caused it. Slowly, cautiously, she lowered her arm, clutching the cup tightly. Then she quickly moved to fill it with water. She began to drink, but the feeling returned, and she forgot how to swallow. She couldn’t swallow...she couldn’t breathe. She began choking.

The world started to spin, her whole body began to shiver, yet it was hot...so hot. She was on fire, the flames licking her limbs, leaving trails of white-hot saliva across her skin. Tears began to crawl their way down her cheeks, their talons digging into her flesh, drawing blood and mixing with the tears. Her heartbeat doubled, causing a quake beneath her skin, sending her bones rattling, shaking up every coherent thought until she couldn’t stand it anymore.

She opened her mouth to scream, but only an ear-piercing mewling escaped her now parched lips. Doing the first thing that came to mind, she dumped the glass of water over her head, determined to get rid of the quelling heat. What was wrong with her? Was it a vision? If so, she should be able to control herself. At these thoughts, she began to concentrate completely on staying upright.

Her muscles began to spasm, begging her to give up to the needs of gravity. She wouldn’t allow it, however. She needed to keep control. She focused on breathing...just...breathing. Slowly, things seemed to come back into control. She was just about to congratulate herself on being so calm, when she dropped to the ground unconscious, as though hit over the head with a mallet.

”Yesss,” said a slow, menacing voice. “You will scream until you die, Black. You will die, unless you tell me,” it said, obviously taking great joy in something. It wasn’t very difficult to see why, for Sirius Black...or what was left of him...was curled up in a corner, his eyes barely opened, coughing and choking. Blood pooled from a huge gash in his leg, and a large chunk of his ear was missing. He was obviously trying to regain some sort of composure, but was failing miserably. He finally gave up and slumped, nearly unconscious, to the ground.

“That’s right...you’re tired, in pain. Wouldn’t it be so much easier? Just tell me where the Potters are...just...tell me...” said the voice of Lord Voldemort. Sirius’ eyes seemed to pale in color. He opened his mouth, trying to say something, but only a tiny croak escaped his dried lips.

“What was that?” Voldemort asked softly. Sirius tried again, but decided that he didn’t need words. Instead, he brought his hand up in a gesture that quite said it all. Voldemort merely smiled. “I was hoping that was it. Very well, I think we need some more...” he said, and he walked over to Sirius. His long black robes hugged his skeletal body, making him look taller than he really was, add that to his bony hands, stretching towards Sirius, and he could have looked like a freakish praying-mantis. “I realize now that mere physical pain won’t get me anywhere...but what about emotional pain? You fools who love realize nothing. You know not of the power you give me just by...caring,” he said simply, toying with his wand.

Sirius had become suddenly very stiff, and Voldemort smiled. “What are you talking about?” Sirius finally said in a garbled voice, heavy with agony.

“I’m talking, of course, about...love,” he said the word with such distaste, spitting on the ground afterwards, as if attempting to get the taste of it out of his mouth.

“I don’t love anyone,” Sirius said gruffly.

“I beg to differ,” Voldemort hissed. Then he pulled back the sleeve of his robe, to reveal the darkmark tattooed onto his forearm. He touched it with a long, bony finger, then hissed a little, sounding like a snake as smoke rose from his arm where his finger touched it. Within seconds a ‘pop’ filled the room, and Lucius Malfoy had appeared.

“Yes, my lord?” Lucius asked, rather nervously. Sirius lay in the corner, his clothes in rags, his face nearly mutilated. His heart felt as if it was being squeezed to death, stopping all feeling. Please, god. Don’t let them have Heather...

“Do you have the potion?” Voldemort said thickly, smiling blissfully. Sirius showed the first signs of movement as he tried to get up. Lucius reached into his pocket and pulled out a small vile.

“All other methods have failed,” Voldemort murmured. “Let’s see how you like this....” The next thing Sirius knew, a dark liquid was being forced down his throat. He tried desperately to get away, but in his weakened and beaten state, he could hardly move. A smell of cooked cherries surrounded him, and his pain seemed to lessen. His eyes drooped, and his vision blurred. He felt so much better, so much warmer. His ear stopped throbbing, his leg seemed to be perfectly healed.

He stood up, and wavered slightly on his legs. But then a new person appeared in the brightly colored room. He was in heaven, he realized. He was finally dead. He smiled.

“Heather...” he whispered, tears in his eyes. She stood there, smiling serenely. She looked like an angel. He ran to her, enclosing her in his arms. “I was so worried.”

“No need to worry now, Sirius,” Heather whispered, stroking his hair out of his face. “I’m here now, and everything is going to be alright.”

“They were torturing me,” Sirius informed her. She didn’t seem overly worried, but that didn’t stop Sirius’ smile. He didn’t care, all the mattered was that she was back in his arms again.

“They wouldn’t torture you anymore,” she said softly, leading him over to a chair. “If you’d just tell them where the Potter’s live,” she encouraged.

“You think I should tell them where the Potter’s are?” Sirius asked.

“Yes,” Heather said firmly.

“Can I sleep first?”

“Sleep after,” Heather said, almost annoyed. Sirius frowned.

“Why?”

“Because I don’t want you to worry, or have nightmares,” Heather said, the soft smile back on her lips.

“I don’t want to tell them,” Sirius said. Heather nodded.

“Alright, you don’t have to tell them. But you should tell me,” she informed. Sirius looked at her.

“Why?”

“Don’t you trust me?” she said, looking hurt.

“Of course I trust you,” Sirius said. Heather then smiled. “Of course,” he repeated, running his fingers over her cheek.

“Tell me...”

“Of course I’ll tell you,” Sirius whispered. And he did just that. But as soon as he had told the whereabouts of his best friends, a wall of pain fell upon him, dousing him in misery. Heather slowly faded away. Sirius looked around, and the bright lights disappeared. He was still curled up in a corner, though he was muttering to himself now, clutching desperately at thin air. “Come back...” Sirius’ hoarse voice said, choked from tears. “Come back...” he repeated, and this time it was a whisper that only his ears could hear.

“Thank you, Black,” Voldemort hissed. Sirius looked confused. Thank him for what? “You’ve just told me where to find the Potters,” Voldemort explained.

“No...” Sirius muttered. “NO!” he yelled more firmly.

“‘Don’t you trust me?’” Voldemort said, mimicking a girl’s voice. Sirius’ stomach plummeted in horror. That hadn’t been Heather at all. That potion! It must have messed with his head.

“I didn’t! NO! NOOOO!” Sirius screamed, leaping up off the floor. Voldemort backed away, sporting a most chilling, terrifying smile. Anybody who looked on his face knew, then and there, that the entire world was doomed. Sirius looked as if he had just committed suicide, except that he was still alive. Voldemort looked at Sirius as though he was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. He then turned to Lucius, who was looking as though Christmas had come early. “I don’t understand...”

“Don’t you?” Voldemort asked with pleasure. “Think about what you just saw...”

And then it hit him with full-blown force. That potion. It had made him believe... “Heather...?”

“Wasn’t real,” Voldemort hissed pleasantly. “Go get the Potters.Kill them. All of them.”

“With pleasure,” Lucius whispered, and disappeared. Nobody moved in the room, until Sirius finally collapsed onto the ground, wishing more than ever that he were dead. His body was wracked with sobs.

“Don’t hurt them,” Sirius roared. His face held a look that would have wrung pity from the Devil himself, but Lord Voldemort merely grinned. He had gotten all he wanted from Sirius, and so he raised his wand.

“Avada Kedavra!” he yelled.

“NOOOO!” Sirius screamed, leaping up off the ground. “NO!” he ran at him, dropped to his knees, and let out a howl of such misery, the walls mourned by echoing the scream throughout the room. Pain was still on his face as he dropped to the ground, the life gone from his body. He was dead.






Chapter 37: A Change of Plans
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Chapter Thirty-Seven~*~A Change of Plans


Heather’s eyes slammed open, and she just stood there for several minutes. It took her mind and body quite a while to keep up with what she had just witnessed. After about five minutes, however, she began to react. Her eyes began to water with tears, and her whole body began to tremble. Soon she was convulsed in sobs. She vaguely noticed that she was still standing, but right now, that little victory mattered not at all. In fact, as soon as she noticed this, she remedied it by dropping to the ground in utter despair.

“No...no...” she sobbed, rocking back and forth, wringing her hands and muttering incoherently. One would think her mad. “Please no, that’s not true...that’s not true...” she whispered. Her hands shook terribly as she tried to wipe the sweat from her forehead. “I’ll do anything,” she finally whispered, her eyes full of such emotion, her heart felt fit to burst.

“There, there,” said a calming voice. “Everything will turn out for the best... you’ll see.”

“How can it?” she whispered, ignoring the fact that she didn’t know the provider of the voice. It didn’t matter. Nothing mattered now, except keeping Sirius alive. “All of my visions have come true so far...”

“Only because you have chosen to let them happen,” the voice responded wisely. Heather turned on her knees and saw Orin standing there, his orange eyes peering at her sadly. “There is always an alternative.”

“Yeah well, you don’t even know what I’m talking about...” she muttered, realizing that he was not the right person she should be talking to. At that moment, however, she was too frazzled to do anything. She had just witnessed her fiance’s death, after all. It’s surprising she didn’t go insane right then and there. “Are you saying I can fix this?” she whispered.

“No...that would imply there is something to fix. Nothing is broken. These choices are not right and wrong. They are simply...different. At one point, that choice might seem better than something else,” Orin whispered, never failing to give a confusing answer.

“Whatever,” Heather muttered, too upset to try and work out his riddles. “Just tell me what I can do to stop that from happening. I’ll do anything.”

“This is something you must figure out yourself,” Orin said, coming to sit down beside her.

“Then what the Hell are you doing here?” she asked.

“Making sure that you come to the right conclusion,” he said, nodding. Heather turned to look at him.

“I thought you said that there was no right or wrong,” she pointed out. Orin nodded, smiling.

“See? You do listen!” he said proudly. Heather shook her head, hoping that would rid her of her annoying guest. It didn’t do any such thing, however, and only managed to make her a little nauseated. What could stop that from happening? Heather thought savagely. Sirius wouldn’t have given that information to Voldemort if...what? If he wasn’t Secret-Keeper. That was it! But no...that wasn’t good enough. She had to find out a way to stop him from getting captured by Voldemort altogether.

“That is not possible,” Orin said. Heather stared, knowing that the only way he could have known that was if he had been reading her mind.

“Can you...” she began, but Orin interrupted her.

“You do not have enough information to stop that from happening. But maybe, if you make the right choices, that won’t happen anyway,” he explained.

“If I stop Sirius from being a Secret-Keeper, will that work?” she asked. Orin looked thoughtful.

“It might. It depends entirely on who you pick to put in his place. If you choose one way, Voldemort might not need to capture Sirius,” he said. Heather realized what he was saying, and didn’t like it one bit.

“So the only way I can stop that is by making the spy the Secret-Keeper?” she asked.

“I never said that,” Orin said, sounding lofty.

“You’re infuriating,” Heather muttered distractedly.

“Why thank you,” Orin said, bowing his head slightly. Heather ignored him, and kept thinking. Well, one thing seemed to be clear at least; she had to stop Sirius from being made Secret-Keeper. Who took his place didn’t matter. She didn’t know who the spy was, and right now she couldn’t care less. But he’s already left! And she didn’t know where he was! She stood up quickly, which was a bad idea. As soon as she did so, she felt sure that she had hit the top of her head on a hard surface. Her eyes closed as she tried to keep her balance.

“I don’t know where he is! What if I can’t get there in time?!” she said, beginning to sob once again. She laid a hand on her forehead, trying desperately to forget the images now running through her mind. Sirius lying in the corner, helpless. Sirius dropping to the ground...dead. She couldn’t handle it. She needed help, but who? Nobody else knew about Sirius being the Secret-Keeper, except Dumbledore, and she had no idea where he was either!

“You need to find out where he is,” Orin said wisely. As if he was unveiling some great secret.

“I know that,” she snapped, wiping at the river that was now pouring from her eyes.

“My my, you have no patience!”

“Patience?! Do you have any idea what I just saw?!” she asked, grabbing the little man’s shoulders in fury. “You have no inkling of what I just witnessed. I don’t need you to tell me what to do, and I definately don’t need you to lecture me on my patience. So if you think that you can just waltz in here and–”

“I know where Sirius is,” Orin interrupted, examining his nails carefully.

“–start meddling in things you don’t underst...what?” Heather asked, taking in what Orin had just said. He looked up from his finger nails and raised his eyebrows.

“I know where Sirius is,” he repeated. Heather stared at him, then hope clasped at her heart. Though a little piece of her wondered how he would know that.

“If you’re lying to me, I will find you and I will kill you,” she said. “You hold Sirius’ and the Potter’s life in your hands.”

“I’m well aware of that. Sirius is at Godric’s Hollow,” Orin said. Again she wondered how he knew.

“He told me that much,” Heather said irritably. “Which house in Godric’s Hollow?!” Orin nodded and then began to give her the exact location. He had barely gotten the last bit out before Heather had disapparated.

~~

“Are you sure we’re doing this right?” Sirius wondered, looking at the green powder in his hand with trepidation. Lily rolled her eyes.

“Yes, for the millionth time! You take the green powder, and James, Harry and I take the blue. It’s as simple as that,” she said.

“It sure doesn’t look that simple,” James said, reading over the instructions that Dumbledore had left. “I can’t even pronounce some of these fancy Latin words!” Lily walked over to see what he was talking about.

“James,” she said, taking the paper from him in irritation, “‘inexplicable,’ is not Latin!” James looked rather annoyed, as if he wanted to go look the word up and check. He decided against it, however, as Lily looked to be in a towering mood. She finally stopped moving around, and placed her hands on her hips. “I think that’s everything. What time have you got?”

“Almost midnight,” Sirius supplied, looking nervous. “Alright, go through this one more time.”

“Okay, all you have to do is read all of this stuff from this parchment,” Lily said, handing him a piece covered in writing. “Then, James and I will read this one together,” she said, taking one for her own and standing opposite Sirius. The small living room seemed to shrink as Sirius got more nervous. James went to stand beside Lily.

“Then what?” James asked, looking apprehensively at the powders they were holding.

“Then Sirius takes his powder and makes a big circle on the carpet,” she muttered, frowning. “I’ll bet this stuff will take forever to get out!”

“Yeah and then what? When do I get to do the hokey-pokey?” Sirius asked, feigning excitement.

“Then James, Harry, and I will pour our powder into the circle you made, because...” she scanned the parchment, “it signifies a barrier around our family.”

“Then are we done?” James said nervously. Lily nodded, looking up at them both.

“I feel like a little kid again. Making a secret club, and doing the ritual, things like that,” Sirius said.

“Yes, well hopefully this will be a little more secret than one of your little clubs,” Lily said, smiling. Sirius nodded. “Alright, I’m going to get Harry...I’ll be right back.” She left the room quickly, leaving James and Sirius standing in the room together. All was tense and silent. James stared at the door through which Lily had just left. Sirius shifted around uncomfortably.

“You alright, mate?” he asked James, who gave a little jump. James slowly turned his head, and when his face came around, Sirius could see the moonlight highlighting the fear in his darkened face. His eyes were moist, and his eyebrows bowed in defeat.

“No, Sirius. I’m not,” James said, looking around as if the world had betrayed him. Sirius walked over to him, not sure what to say. He laid a hand on his shoulder.

“Things will be alright, you’ll see,” he said, halfheartedly trying to cheer him up. James shook his head.

“You don’t know that. Nobody knows that,” and his voice was crackling. “That’s my family in that room,” James said softly, nodding to the room from which cooing sounds could be heard. Lily was talking to Harry. “My wife...my child... They’re all that matter to me now.”

James leaned against the wall in despair, running a hand through his messy black hair. “You know, my entire life, I tried to run away from responsibility. I never wanted to have to deal with anything. I always thought life would be one big party, no worries,” he said with a snort. “But now...I’m responsible for Lily’s protection, for Harry’s protection. The scary thing is.... I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

He went to sit on the couch, and he placed his head in his hands. “Not a morning goes by without my waking up in terror. I can’t get to sleep without running to Harry in the middle of the night, and making sure he’s safe and sound. Every creak is Voldemort sneaking around. Every breeze is a Death Eater’s sigh. He haunts my nights, and my days, Sirius.” James was actually crying now. “I just want what every father wants. I want to raise my child outside, I want to teach Harry to play ball, and ride a broom, and sneak him candy when Lily isn’t looking. I want to read the morning paper without fearing the death of a friend being printed on the first page. I want to know that my wife is safe, I want to enjoy our nights together, not jerk awake at her slightest movement, afraid somebody might be stealing her away. Is it too much to ask?” he finished, viciously wiping at his eyes.

“No, James. It isn’t,” Sirius said, his heart bending painfully. “This war will soon be over, you’ll see!”

“There isn’t any hope for us, Sirius. Look around you! We aren’t hiding in this cottage for nothing. Haven’t you seen Dumbledore’s face? Every wrinkle is taught with fear and desperation. He hides it well, but not well enough,” James said.

“Don’t talk like that,” came Lily’s voice from the doorway. She was holding Harry against her, her eyes wet form hearing her husband’s confessions. James’ eyes misted over at the sight, and he went to her, pulling her into a hug. “You don’t mean that. Everything is going to be alright!”

“I don’t know what to do anymore, Lily. I’m so damn scared...” he whispered. Lily put a firm hand on his cheek.

“Listen to me,” she said in a soothing voice, though it was also crackling with emotion. “We’ll get through this. What we have is too strong to be conquered. And besides, with Sirius as our Secret-Keeper, nothing can go wrong!” she said, giving a smile.

“I don’t know what I would do without you,” James whispered, kissing her lightly.

“I don’t know what I would do without you,” Lily confessed.

“I don’t know what I would do without steak,” Sirius said, pretending to wipe a tear from his eye. Both Lily and James burst out laughing. “Now let’s get this thing started. It’s already past midnight.” Both Lily and James nodded, and Sirius, put his hands on both of their shoulders. “James, Lily, Dumbledore has complete confidence in this spell, as do I. Now, I can’t promise you much,” he said softly. “I can’t promise you that Voldemort won’t kill more people. I can’t promise you that we’ll all make it to the end. But I can promise you that I will do whatever is in my power to keep your family safe.”

Lily hugged him tightly, still holding Harry. “I know that, Sirius. You’re the best friend I could hope for,” she muttered. James looked too choked up to speak, and decided instead on a nod that said more than words could have. Sirius grinned. “Alright, Sirius you stand here, and James you can–” Lily began to move them around the room, positioning them to begin the spell.

“WAIT!” came a new voice. They all turned to see Heather charging through the door. “DON’T DO IT!”

“Heather? What’s wrong?” Sirius said, hurrying to her.

“I had a vision!” she panted. “If you become the Secret-Keeper, you and I will die, and Voldemort will torture you for the Potter’s location!”

“I would never give away their location!” Sirius said, affronted. Heather shook her head.

“You didn’t. I saw them torturing you. You weren’t in your right mind! They gave you some sort of potion, and you began talking to yourself. You told them where Lily and James were... It was horrible, I watched you die...” Heather was hysterical, crying against his shoulder, holding on to him for dear life. Sirius was stunned, but he managed to comfort her.

“Did they hurt you?” Sirius asked immediately. “Were you there?”

“No,” Heather whispered, and she watched Sirius’ face sag in relief.

“How do you know that it won’t happen if Sirius doesn’t become Secret-Keeper?” Lily asked.

“I saw it in the vision!” Heather said, deciding not to tell them about Orin. But in truth, she didn’t know how he knew either. Everybody looked around the room, and now Harry had awakened. He was looking at everybody, blinking obliviously.

“What do we do, James?” Lily asked, thinking hard. James looked around, feeling that he was making a decision that would change their destiny.

“If you change the Secret-Keeper, Voldemort would never suspect,” Sirius explained. “So if he did think there was a Secret-Keeper, he would naturally think you’d picked me. But...what if we switched it. He could torture me all he wanted, and I would have nothing to tell,” he explained, realizing that he was most likely be captured by Voldemort.

“So we lead him in the wrong direction...” James said slowly. “And you would be the bait...”

“But, Sirius! You would undoubtably be captured,” Lily said. Sirius shrugged. Heather prayed that this change in plans would be enough to keep Sirius safe.

“It may be the only way to keep your family safe,” Sirius said, thinking hard. If he had to die for his friends, so be it. Here was his test...he would prove that he wasn’t like the other Blacks. As long as he knew that Heather would be safe while he was gone....

“You won’t be captured,” she said frantically. Sirius looked forlornly at her. “He doesn’t need to even know there is a Secret-Keeper!”

“Yes, but when he finds out there is one, he’ll come for me, Heather, you know he will,” Sirius said sadly, pulling her against him.

If he finds out. And I’m not going to let that happen!” she said. She didn’t realize that she was yelling now. James saw her distress.

“Heather, we will do everything in our power to keep Sirius safe. Don’t worry. But now, we need to pick a new Secret-Keeper...and fast.”

“Who?” Lily said, trying to keep Harry from pulling at her long red hair. “Who would Voldemort never suspect?”

“Peter,” James, Sirius, and Heather all said at once. Lily nodded. “Should we ask Dumbledore first?” she asked.

“There isn’t time. We need to finish this tonight,” James said firmly. “I’ll send Peter an owl. Sirius, Heather...I’m afraid you can’t be here while the charm is being done...” he added apologetically.

“We understand,” Sirius said. “And James...be careful.”

“I will, you know me. Always careful,” he said with a snort. He turned to go write Peter a letter.

“And James?” Sirius said. James stopped and turned. “Everything is going to be alright.”

A/N: This is one ofmy favorite chapters ever! Only because I just LOVED writing the distraught James. It really just pulled the emotions right out of me. so please review=0)



Chapter 38: What Dreams May Come/ Echoes of the Past
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Chapter Thirty-Eight~*~What Dreams May Come/Echoes of the Past


Peter’s heart was pounding as he walked numbly down the street. It was way past midnight, and the sun was beginning to peek over the trees, slowly and cautiously, as though checking to make sure it was safe. Peter would have liked to inform it that, no, it wasn’t safe. He wished he could explain that he had just been given the information Voldemort craved. He had just been made Secret-Keeper for the Potters! No...nothing was safe now.

His hands grew cold in his pockets, and he pulled them out, looking at their soft, pudgy surface. Dirt was sprinkled carelessly between his fingers, mingled with sweat. These grimy little hands held the fate of the Potters, Heather, Sirius, Alice, Frank, and probably even Remus.

“They deserve it...” he whispered, his watery eyes closing against the memory of Alex’s face. “They deserve to die!” his voice raised, yelling to nobody in particular. He was suffocating, his own vengeful plans were crumbling in on him. He knew it would lead to his ruin, if not his death. His thoughts were so confused, he wasn’t sure if he cared or not. Alex would have known what to do...Alex would have helped him along.

The misery he was feeling threatened to push him through the cracks in the sidewalk. The weather seemed to grow darker with his mood. Slowly, pale clouds formed in the sky, moving together as though trying to gain comfort from one another. It didn’t seem to be working, because they started to cry. They mourned for the loss of so many lives. They alone knew Peter’s thoughts, and they alone could portray the desolation he felt. Their tears dripped on his shoulders, and they were as a tonic, healing his wounds. He finally stopped walking, raising his head to the heavens.

He tried to forget the look on Lily’s face as she put the protection of her child with him. She had looked so confident, yet nervous. And then little Harry...so tiny...so defenseless. He knew nothing of the world and it’s evils. Better to end his life at this point, right? Peter thought. Why raise a child in a world filled with such misery? Peter was actually helping them...wasn’t he?

No, he thought. He was killing them. He was as good as murdering the only friends he had ever had. ‘But they killed Alex!’ a little voice in his head insisted.

“Not really,” Peter said aloud, now soaking wet. “It wasn’t them personally.”

‘But it was their kind...it was Aurors...’ the little voice said.

“Do they deserve to die for what others have done?” Peter asked himself. But he had hardly thought the question before the word ‘yes’ was repeated throughout his numb mind. But then he had an idea...he remembered Voldemort asking him if he’d known the full Prophesy. Peter had said no. He remembered those feelings so vividly. It was the first time he had been able to lie to Voldemort without his finding out! His heart raced now as he realized what advantage this gave him. Voldemort didn’t know that trying to kill Harry would be his downfall...if he kept that a secret...

“There you are, we’ve been looking for you all over,” said a nasally voice from right behind him. Peter leapt a foot in the air, turning to see Theodore Knott standing there in the rain. “Voldemort wants you...you’re in big trouble...”

Peter gulped, but apparated along with Knott. He wasn’t too afraid though. He had information that would most likely save his life...and end Voldemort’s.

~~

“Well, I suppose this is officially our home now,” Lily said half-heartedly. “It’s not too bad, is it?” James looked around the shabby, one-story house.

“Yeah, Lils, it’s great,” he said sarcastically. Lily looked crestfallen.

“There is no need to take that tone,” she said reprovingly.

“No reason at all?” he asked, the bags under his eyes becoming more pronounced. “We’ve just been moved from our home to this dump, we brought only one suitcase of our luggage, we’ve been put under house arrest, we can’t have visitors, Remus hasn’t spoken to us in weeks, dozens of wizards and witches die every day, my life is in danger, your life is in danger, and most of all, our son’s life is in danger. Not to mention that one of my friends is a spy, Alice and Frank have been getting threats in the mail, and oh, by the way, we have an evil wizard that will most likely take over the world any day now!”

Nobody moved after James’ raging, until slowly, Harry began to cry a low, mournful wailing. Lily’s eyes were watering, and she was slowly shaking her head in misery. “I can’t believe you just said that,” she whispered. “Do you think I don’t know that? Do you think I’m oblivious to all that’s happening?”

“You’re always so calm, don’t you care about what’s happening around us?” James asked, raking his fingers through his hair.


“Of course I care!” Lily yelled at him, ignoring Harry’s wails. “I act calm because if I didn’t, Harry would have two parents acting like idiots. Don’t you ever think that your moping about might effect your son? When was the last time you saw him smile? If all he sees is your forlorn face, he can only assume that there is something to be afraid of!”

“There is something to be afraid of!” James said desperately.

“Yes, there is. And I’m terrified,” Lily whispered, taking James off guard. He hadn’t expected that little confession, but it came as a hard blow. “Somebody has to be strong for our son, and if it can’t be both of us, I must do it alone.”

“Lily...” James said, shame washing over him. But Lily ignored him and took Harry into another room. James kicked their table in anger. Lily was right, he was acting like an idiot. He had to be strong. “Dammit, I’m sorry,” he whispered, and he walked to the door of the room Lily and Harry were in. He watched from afar as Lily set Harry on the carpeted floor. She picked up on of his favorite stuffed animals, attempting to make him laugh. He wouldn’t do it.

“Hello, Harry!” Lily said, making her voice low and playing with the stuffed frog. Harry tried to grab it, but Lily quickly moved it from his reach, making the frog kiss him on the nose. Harry let out a satisfied noise, and tried to grab it again, this time Lily let him. Harry attempted to put the thing in his mouth, but Lily stopped him. James’ heart broke as he watched his wife trying desperately to pull some happiness from his son. Finally Lily took the frog, making it leap around Harry, making croaking noises. Lily smiled triumphantly. “Things aren’t that bad! Just smile, and things will be a lot better around here!”

Harry responded with a gurgling noise. Flapping his arms around happily, he tried to crawl over to the empty corner of the room, where a spider was now sitting, watching them menacingly. Lily let out a gasp. “Oh no, Harry. You don’t want to play with that!” she said, laughing at Harry’s enthusiasm. Her smile faded as she watched the spider crawling around, and then looked up at the number of spider webs draping themselves from the ceiling. “It’s not home, that’s for sure,” she said with a sigh. “But it’s only for a short time. We’ll be out of this place soon.”

“Yes, we will,” James said from the doorway, scaring Lily.

“Don’t sneak up on me like that,” Lily said crossly, doing her best not to look at him. She was still furious.

“Lily, I’m sorry,” James whispered. There was a silence, and then Lily looked up at him.

“I know,” Lily whispered sadly, bouncing Harry on her lap. James took him from her, and lifted him into the air. “Be careful!” she squealed as James began to twirl him around.

“He likes it, Lily. Look at his face!” James said excitedly. James gave a laugh at the joy on his son’s face. “He will make a great Quidditch player someday.”

“I certainly hope not!” Lily said, as though the idea made her faint. Though when Harry let out a giggle, and then a laugh, her heart warmed. James continued to lift Harry into the air, swirling him around and laughing with his son.

~~

“You disappoint me, Peter,” said the death-promising voice of Lord Voldemort. “You said you didn’t know where the Potters were living, yet I recently found out that you have been over at their house many times.”

“Yes, my lord,” Peter said, whimpering.

“Do you realize how long I have been searching for the Potters?” Voldemort asked softly.

“Yes, my lord,” Peter mumbled.

“And do you realize that this time you’ve wasted is more valuable than your life?” Voldemort said, this time he moved forward a little.

“No, my lord,” Peter said, gathering all of his courage. Voldemort froze in surprise.

“...no?”

“I’ve been waiting for the right moment,” Peter said, lying. He wasn’t sure why, but Voldemort either ignored the fact that Peter was lying, or didn’t care.

“Tell me where they are living,” Voldemort said. “Then I will kill you.”

“I’m the Potter’s Secret-Keeper, my lord,” Peter said quickly. That got the reaction he had wanted. Voldemort’s eyes widened in a joy so great, Peter knew he would be spared his life. Voldemort’s face twisted into a disgusting smile.

“You’re their Secret-Keeper,” he said, as though wanting to hear the words again.

“Yes,” Peter said, his relief forming in his throat.

“That makes me very happy, Peter,” Voldemort said softly. “Now, tell me their location, and I will spare your life.”

“Yes, my lord,” Peter said meekly, his life in ruins. Hopefully Voldemort would make their deaths painless....

~~
“When will this end, Sirius?” Heather whispered, walking into the living room and collapsing in a couch by the fire. Sirius sat down beside her, his face blank, betraying the roiling emotions beneath the surface. He felt like a boiling pot, ready to overflow at any minute. He put his arm around Heather.

“Heather, I honestly don’t know,” Sirius murmured.

“It’s not fair,” Heather said, crying now. People seemed to be crying a lot lately. “Lily and James should be able to enjoy a normal life. It’s wrong, Sirius. What can we do?”

“I don’t think there is anything we can do,” Sirius sighed. Then he groaned. “I have work tomorrow.”

“Don’t remind me,” Heather said, closing her eyes and shaking her head. Sirius saw her immense stress, and held her hand.

“We’ll get through this,” he whispered against her ear, “and we’ll do it together.”

“I know,” Heather said, and she smiled. “Come on, I’ve got to get up early tomorrow.” Together they left the living room. Sirius was moving down the hallway when he stopped, realizing Heather had stopped walking. He turned to see her standing completely still. She looked like a statue.

“Heather? Are you alright?” he walked towards her, his hand outstretched.

“Don’t–touch–me!” she stuttered. Sirius withdrew his hand slowly.

“What’s wrong?” Fear was etched in his face. “Are you sick?”

“I’m going to have a vision soon,” she whispered in realization. Sirius frowned.

“How do you–” he began, but before he could finish the question, Heather’s eyes closed, and her head jerked back. Her fists were balled up tightly, and she looked as though she were having some sort of seizure. “Heather!” Sirius yelled, not sure what to do. Should he wake her up?

James tossed Harry into the air, laughing and joking, while Lily looked on, love sparkling in her eyes. The rain tossed around outside, denting their cheery mood. The pathetic little house they lived in was leaky, they discovered, and pots and pans were placed around the house at certain locations.

“He will make a great Quidditch player someday,” James informed.

“I certainly hope not!” Lily said, as though the idea made her faint. Though when Harry let out a giggle, and then a laugh, her heart warmed. James continued to lift Harry into the air, swirling him around and laughing with his son. “Alright, I’m going to make dinner. Any favorites?”

“Macaroni and cheese!” James said, acting like a two-year-old. Lily laughed.

“I’ll see what I can do.” She grinned. James turned back to Harry.

“Did you hear that? She’ll see what she can do,” he informed his son, bouncing him around. Lily left the room, still smiling. James set his son on the ground, watching as he tried to move around, but failing miserably. “You know, I think things are going to be alright,” James said softly, smiling lovingly. Harry turned to see who was talking. “I know, I know, I’m singing a different song all of a sudden, but the more I think about it, the more I agree with Lily.”

Harry gurgled, swinging a stuffed horse around.

“You’ll know to agree with her too, someday. She’s a tough one to beat, so you’ll quickly learn that no matter what, Lily is always right,” he said jokingly.

Harry made a face at that one.

“Yeah, it’s tough to get used to,” James muttered. Then a dreamy look came over his face as he heard pots and pans clanging together as Lily worked on dinner. “But it’s worth it, in the end. You’re an amazing thing, you know that?” James said as an after-thought. “I just still can’t believe I have a son!”

Harry giggled, and James pulled him into his arms.

“We’re going to make a great pair, you and I,” James informed him. “I’m going to teach all you need to know. You’re going to be a pro at Quidditch, and you’ll break every school rule there is to break! Just don’t tell Lily....” James whispered.

“And maybe when you’re older, you’ll become an Auror, like your old man,” James said proudly. “And I’ll be there to help you through it all. Remember that, Harry,” James whispered, a smiled forming his lips. “No matter what, your mother and I will always be there for you.”

Harry’s face relaxed, his eyes drooping slightly. James snorted. “Your appreciation is touching, son,” he muttered sarcastically. He set Harry gingerly in his crib, trying not to wake him. Then he moved to the living room, grabbed a paper, and then froze. He had just heard something. He ripped out his wand. It had been outside. His heart thundered, but he moved out the back door, being as quite as possible.

“Hello, Potter,” said a cold voice from right behind him. James spun around quickly to see Lord Voldemort. His mind seemed to freeze. Lily and Harry were inside! He had to protect them! He readied his wand. “I’d like to end this quickly, if you don’t mind,” Voldemort said politely, his eyes narrowed into red slits. “I still have your wife and son to murder, you see. So little time, so many–”

But James didn’t allow Voldemort to finish.”AVADA KEDAVRA!” he screamed, his heart and mind focused on the family he had. Voldemort reacted so quickly, James was only just able to move out of the way.

“Relashio!” Voldemort hissed, sending a torrent of sparks at James. The hem of his robes singed, but James remained unharmed. “Come, Potter. We know you’re an excellent Auror, but you’ll never be able to beat me!”

“We’ll see about that!” James roared, and then, “Flamrata!” Flames surrounded Voldemort, covering him in black smoke. Coughing could be heard from within, but the flames hid all. James squinted, praying that Voldemort was inside those flames, burning to the ground. He couldn’t see however, as the flames had grown to high. James seemed to stand there for eternity, until the fire slowly began to die down.

James’ eyes widened as he looked on. There was nothing there, but a pile of ash. Was that it? Had the great Lord Voldemort been beaten by simple flame? No, James didn’t believe it for a second. Instead, he began looking around viciously for any sign of further danger. He didn’t see any. Lily, he thought. He had to get Lily out of here. He began to run to the door, but just before he grabbed the handle, it covered itself with sharp spines. He didn’t react quick enough, and his hand was impaled by hundreds of tiny needles. He swore in pain, and looked around. His hand oozed blood, and he was forced to switch wand-hands. Something caught his eye, however, distracting him completely.

A tiny black snake crawled from the ashes, it’s eyes looking around, its tongue waggling in malice. “You can’t win, Potter,” said a cold voice that seemed to come from within James’ own head. “Give up...that’s what all the others do...”

James didn’t even respond to that, but instead raised his wand. Before he could open his mouth to issue a curse, he was interrupted by a collapsing sensation on his skull. He felt as if he had just been hit over the head with a hammer. His eyes watered as he struggled to stay conscious. He wobbled on his feet, and looked around blearily for the cause of such pain. He hadn’t quite found it yet when he was hit yet again in the stomach. He dropped to the ground.

“What the...” he muttered, now struggling to his senses. He finally found the cause of his pain when his eyes landed on the form of a huge snake. The snake’s tail whipped around, trying to hit James again. This time James was ready, and he rolled to the side. The tail hit hard ground. Voldemort sprung from the body of the smaller snake, and now he seemed to be talking to the larger one. “Parseltongue...” James whispered in disgust. Voldemort grinned evilly.

“Now...” he said, and the snake reared its head back. James knew what it was about to do. It was prepared to sink its teeth into him, ready to kill him with its venomous fangs. James wouldn’t allow that, and made a violent slashing movement with his wand. Immediately the snake dropped to the ground, as a noise issued from it that James had never heard any living creature issue. A deep gash in its side oozed black blood while its head flailed around.

Voldemort’s eyes widened in furry. “Look what you’ve done!” he screamed. The snake wailed even more, but Voldemort was ignoring it now. “You’ve gone too far, Potter.” James backed away, but decided on a new idea. He didn’t raise his wand, and instead stared straight into Voldemort’s cold red eyes. He had never tried anything like this before, but right now he knew who would ultimately win if things kept going like this. James had to change the rules a little, and do something...unexpected. It was obvious that for a second, Voldemort was confused. Within moments, however, James’ motives became quite clear.

“Legilimens...”

“NO! Stop it!” a little boy cried, cowering in a corner. A large man was holding a wooden baseball bat, and his face was contorted in furry.

“How many times do I have to say it! KEEP AWAY FROM MY BROOMS!” the man yelled, hitting the boy hard with the bat. The little boy cried, a long, pitiful cry.

“I didn’t mean to, tell him mommy. I didn’t mean to break it!” the boy cried to somebody standing in the doorway. A women was watching the scene with such intensity. She looked horrified, as if she wanted to help, but was too afraid to.

“I think it was an accident, Tom,” the woman said in a soft, sweet voice. She was actually quite beautiful, with soft red hair and pale skin. Now her face was wretched and tear stained. Tom looked thoughtfully at the woman. Then he nodded gruffly.

“Fine!” he screamed, and threw the bat at the boy, who threw his hands over his face. Then without another backward glance, he stormed out of the room. For what seemed like forever, nobody moved. Then the woman walked slowly to the boy.

“Its okay, Tommy. Everything’s going to be alright,” she whispered, pulling the beaten boy into her arms.

“Why didn’t you stop him?” Tommy sobbed, his blue eyes were red from crying. His mother ignored him, and continued to rock him back and forth. Tommy was shaking badly, both from pain and furry. “I’m going to kill him. I’m going to kill that man,” he whispered.

“STOP! NO!” Voldemort screamed. He was out of breath, and his body was shaking terribly. He hadn’t expected that. No Auror had ever been able to break into his memories before....

James knew at once he had witnessed a piece of Voldemort’s past. He stared in amazement, as he had never seen Voldemort so flustered before. Or so angry.

“I’m going to make you wish you had never been born,” Voldemort hissed, advancing so quickly upon James that he almost fell over. “CRUCIO!” he yelled, but it never touched him.

“Protego!” somebody yelled from a distance away. The torturing curse flew back at Voldemort, who conjured up a silver shield to protect himself. It melted as the spell hit it, letting out a scream of its own as the hot metal dripped down onto the grass. Both men turned to see Lily, her wand out, looking empowered.

“Lily! Run! Take Harry and get out of here!” James screamed upon seeing her. He had never been so terrified in his life as he saw his wife standing in the middle of the yard, so vulnerable.

“I won’t leave you here!” she screamed.

“Lily! Save our child! I’ll hold him off! It’s the only way and you know it!” James yelled, but he suddenly felt a sharp pain on his leg, and it took him a while to notice that it wasn’t going away. He looked down, and whole face drooped in realization. He had the feeling he was in an airplane, and knew the plane was about to crash. His whole existence came down to three more minutes at most. He was a dead man, yet he was alive enough to realize it. As he had been arguing with Lily, a tiny black snake had slithered its way over to them, unnoticed. It currently had its teeth embedded in his ankle. “Oh shit...” was all James could say as he stared down. Slowly he began to feel the pain all throughout his body. He began to sway on his feet, and his vision blurred. “Lily...take Harry and run...” he whispered, sinking onto the ground. His body hit cold, hard ground and his eyes rolled around.

“I’ve failed,” he whispered as the last of his life dripped from his eyes in the form of tears. “I’ve failed...”

Lily watched in comprehension as her husband dropped to the ground.

Numb.

Cold.

Terrified.

Lily didn’t know what to do. All caution left her as she ran to James. Surely he was just sleeping...that was it! Of course! Silly of her to get so frightened.... She nudged his shoulder, and his head flopped forward. Lily let out a horrified scream, and then, without thinking, threw her fingers at his neck, checking for signs of life. Her fingers were so eager for a pulse that they itched with hope. Yet no amount of hope could bring James back.

“NOOOOO!!!!” came a blood-curdling scream. Lily leapt at James, grabbing his face between her hands. Dead? No! Surely not! She tried to crawl closer. “WAKE UP! JAMES WAKE UP!” she yelled in his face. He did nothing. He didn’t wake up at all. Lily’s entire world seemed to collapse in on her. She couldn’t breath. “No...no...” she chanted over and over again. She clung to James’ lifeless form. She tried desperately to attain the warmth he normally possessed. Now, however, he was as cold as ice. She began to notice a soft, satisfied laughing coming from somewhere near. She saw Lord Voldemort, his eyes narrowed as he smiled in pure joy.

“COME BACK! JAMES!” she wailed, anguish ripping at her voice, leaving it in indecipherable pieces. She scrambled backwards, hearing only Voldemort’s sickening laughter. She knew the only reason that she wasn’t dead was because he was enjoying her pain so much. Her sobs wracked her entire body. What was happening? Little black dots danced before her eyes, and she thought she might have fainted if not for a certain thought that floated into her head. Harry...she needed to get her son....

In minutes she was on her feet, running to Harry’s room. Voldemort followed her lazily, his eyes twinkling with a happiness that can only be attained by people with insanity running through their veins. She threw open the kitchen door and ran to Harry’s room. He lay sleeping soundly. Lily ripped him from his crib and clutched him to her chest. But as soon as she ran to the open door, it slammed shut in her face. “NO!” she wailed, her hands slipping on the doorhandle that refused to turn. She pulled out her wand with shaking hands. “Bombarda!” she yelled, but the blast that occurred did nothing to open the door.

“There is no way out,” a cool voice said from the corner. Lily turned to see Lord Voldemort standing there, twirling his own wand about.

“STAY AWAY FROM ME!”

“I will if you give me the baby,” Voldemort whispered, smiling as if Lily’s misery was a sweet candy he was savoring.

“STAY AWAY FROM MY BABY!” she screamed at him. She picked up anything near her and threw it at him. Then she got a better idea, and raised her wand.

“Avada Kedavra!” she yelled. The spell missed Voldemort by inches, blasting a hug hole in the wall. “Impedimenta!” she screamed, but Voldemort blocked it. “STUPIFY STUPIFY STUPIFY!” she wailed in horror. Voldemort blocked them all. Lily stood out of breath. “Don’t hurt my baby...take me instead,” she whispered.

“It doesn’t work like that, Lily,” Voldemort said evilly. “Move aside, and you needn’t die,” he hissed.

“Never!” she screamed. Voldemort shook his head, but smiled all the same.

“As you wish...”


Next Chapter::::: Echoes of the Past:::::::::::

“GO TO THEM!” came a shrill, blood-curdling shriek. “RUN! LILY! JAMES!”

“Heather, calm down, everything is going to be alright!” Sirius said, looking as if he had just seen a dementor. His face was tight and stressed. He had sweat covering his face, and she saw relief trickling across his entire body. She was shaking violently.

“Oh god, oh god,” she was whispering over and over again. Tears rolled thunderously down her cheeks. “I’ve got to help them!” Sirius cradled her.

“Jesus, I was so worried about you. When you didn’t wake up, I didn’t know what to do! I tried everything, I even called Dumbledore, but he wasn’t at the school. I was so scared,” he said, whispering the last bit as he tried to drown himself in her long dark hair. Heather realized where she was. She was lying in their bedroom, and Sirius was sitting by her side, as pale as the moon.

“I’ve got to go! Now!” she said, trying to scramble out of bed.

“You’re not going anywhere,” Sirius said firmly. He doubted she would be able to stand anyway, she was shaking so bad. “You need to tell me what you saw,” he said soothingly. Heather calmed down as she looked into his strong face. He was there for her, she knew. She drew comfort from his presence. She felt better knowing that he would be there. Everything was going to be alright...Sirius could handle any situation.

“Voldemort...he killed Lily and James!” she gasped out. Sirius froze for a moment.

“You’re sure?” he asked quietly. She nodded vigorously.

“We’ve got to go to them before it happens. And little Harry...” she whispered. She couldn’t remember if he had actually gone through with the spell. She assumed he must have killed Harry too. She wept even harder at the thought of the innocent child being murdered at such a young age.

“I’ll go and take a look,” Sirius said, holding her hand. Heather nodded, beginning to stand again. As soon as she reached her feet, her legs began to shake all over again. Sirius steadied her. “And you’ll stay here.”

“I’m not just going to lay here and let you handle everything,” she nearly yelled.

“Heather, you can barely stand,” Sirius insisted. “And besides,” he continued quickly, as she opened her mouth to argue again, “Somebody needs to stay here in case Dumbledore comes by. I’m going to go and look for him while I’m out. He should know about this.”

“How will you get there?” she said frantically.

“I’ll take the motorcycle,” Sirius said, standing up quickly.

“But it’s broad daylight!”

“Not anymore,” Sirius said, looking scared again. “You’ve been out for quite a long time...” Heather sighed in frustration. Sirius stopped and turned to her, seeing her distraught face. “Hey, it’s going to be alright. Remember, it hasn’t happened, and it might not ever happen.”

“Yeah. There is always another path...” Heather whispered, remembering the little blue-haired man’s words.

“Cliche much?” Sirius asked. Heather shook her head, not looking up from her deep thoughts.

“Go now. I’ll let you know if Dumbledore stops by,” she said hurriedly. Sirius nodded, and within seconds he had gathered up his cloak and had left. Heather heard the door shut, and laid her head in her hands. “We’re all going to die....”

~~

Sirius rode off into the air, allowing the feeling of freedom to swallow him whole. What did it all mean? He thought to himself. Was he really going to die, like Heather’s vision? Were the Potter’s really doomed? Would evil rise above good, crushing them into the ground? This certainly wasn’t the way he had planned things to happen. In all of the books, and the movies, good always won. Sure there were the stumbling blocks, but in the end, everything always worked out. It didn’t seem like that would be the case this time. If all of the visions Heather was having came true....

He didn’t want to think about that.

He began to focus more on the direction of the Potter’s house. He pulled out a slip of parchment with Peter’s hand-writing scrawled on it. He had been one of the few that had been granted the knowledge of the Potter’s location. He, Dumbledore, Hagrid, Moody, and of course Peter were the only ones who knew. Even Heather didn’t know.

He read the slip carefully, keeping one eye on the sky. He quickly memorized it, and slipped the parchment back into his pocket. He then began to search for the small, dingy cottage. Within fifteen minutes Sirius had almost reached his destination. His heart was pounding with anticipation. Would he find the house blown to bits? Would he walk among the ruins and find their dead bodies thrown about the wreckage? He shuddered at the thought. And how would Voldemort know, anyways? Would Peter tell? Was Peter the spy?!

His heart throbbed with relief as the house came into sight below the trees. It looked perfectly fine. He was about to fly down and tell the Potters to be on guard, but then thought better of that idea. What if he was being followed? What if a Death Eater saw him? They might follow him down. He couldn’t risk that. He had to find Peter. What if he was being tortured by Voldemort right now? And where was Dumbledore?

He decided to go to the one place he thought Dumbledore might be: Hogwarts. He swivelled back around, swerving dangerously, and then zoomed forward, hugging the treeline, making certain he wasn’t seen.

He arrived at Hogwarts about an hour later. A feeling of returning home consumed him, and his growing anxiety seemed to leave him for a second. Then he spotted something. Somebody was milling around the grounds. At first he thought it was probably Hagrid, but he saw at once that it couldn’t possibly be. It was much too small. He squinted his eyes, and began his descent. His curiosity was peaked. He touched the ground within minutes, quite a distance from the moving figure. He landed with a soft thud.

The person froze, and began looking around then. He spotted Sirius, pulled out his wand, and then lowered it slightly upon seeing who it was. Sirius’ eyes widened in disgust as the newcomer made his way towards him.

“Hello, Black,” said Snape’s greasy voice. Sirius just glared, his blood boiling hot.

“What are you doing out here, Snivelly? Reporting to Voldmort?”

“You wish,” Snape hissed. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have very private business to attend to.”

“I don’t think so,” Sirius growled, grabbing Snape as he tried to pass him. Snape glared at him. Sirius raised his wand to point it directly at his opponent’s over-large nose. “Where is Dumbledore?” Snape didn’t answer him. How he wanted to kill the little slime....

“There is a spy among us, Black. I don’t believe you need to know where Dumbledore is,” Snape said, and tried to move again. Sparks flew from the end of Sirius’ wand. Snape flinched.

“Please, continue to deny me the information. I would love another excuse to kill you,” Sirius snapped. Snape looked a little unhinged.

“You wouldn’t dare...”

“Do you think so?” Sirius asked, raising a brow. Snape knew that Black was certainly capable of doing so. He even had good reason.

“Very well,” Snape said, trying to sound unconcerned. “There may be some trouble at the Longbottom’s house. He went to check on them.”

“When will he be back?” Sirius asked. Snape’s eyes flashed with anger.

“I don’t know,” he muttered. There was silence for a very long time. Then Sirius let go of Snape with such force that he went flying backwards. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“To find Dumbledore,” Sirius said, jumping on his bike. He was about to kick off when he thought of something. “What are you doing out here?”

“Looking for Hagrid,” Snape said simply, glaring. Sirius frowned. Where was everybody when you needed them? He kicked off the ground then. He would go find Alice and Frank. Hopefully Dumbledore would be there.

He had to pass the Potter’s house to get there, which he found convenient; he wanted to keep a close eye on them. He was coming over the tree tops, about forty-five minutes later. He looked around for the top of Godric’s Hollow. He spotted the small village, and his heart thudded to a halt.

“No...” he whispered, tears filling his eyes. Instead of the run-down old house that the Potter’s lived in, a destroyed clearing now lay burning to the ground. “NO!” he repeated, his the pieces of his broken heart now littering his voice. His eyes drained themselves of emotions, tears streamed across his frozen cheeks. Without a thought for caution, he dove towards the ground.

Before he had reached the ground, he leapt off the motorbike. “Lily! James! Harry!” he yelled. The house was completely in ruins. Burnt furniture was spewed everywhere, remnants of walls stood alone. He immediately ran around the garbage, picking up pieces of wallpaper, or chunks of linoleum. He threw around bricks, searching frantically for any sign of life. He spotted a small, broken crib lying on its side. He ran to it, tripping and stumbling. Ash and charcoal covered his clothing. Smoke invaded his nostrils, but none of it was as powerful as seeing the overturned crib. He began sobbing as he snatched at a soot-covered blanket.

His whole body shook, and he dropped to his knees. His hands clenched into fists. He spotted a glimmer of something in the moonlight. Something...red. His stomach clenched at the sight. He did the only thing he could do, and vomited. He crawled over to the body of Lily Potter. Her pale face was blackened, her legs lay unmoving beneath a large wooden beam. “Lily...” Sirius choked, barely audible through his pain. A small stuffed frog lay close to her lifeless hand. Sirius snatched it up. He set it softly in her palm. His heart-wrenching sobs filled the silence as he laid his head in his hands.

“You didn’t deserve this.... I’m so sorry...It’s all my fault,” he coughed out. His blood-red eyes searched around for any signs of James, but there was none...until he spotted something lying a few feet away. Sirius stood and practically ran to a pair of cracked spectacles. Sirius held them in his hand for a long while, allowing the echoes of the past to engulf him.

“Not a morning goes by without my waking up in terror. I can’t get to sleep without running to Harry in the middle of the night, and making sure he’s safe and sound. Every creak is Voldemort sneaking around. Every breeze is a Death Eater’s sigh. He haunts my nights, and my days, Sirius.” James was actually crying now. “I just want what every father wants. I want to raise my child outside, I want to teach Harry to play ball, and ride a broom, and sneak him candy when Lily isn’t looking. I want to read the morning paper without fearing the death of a friend being printed on the first page. I want to know that my wife is safe, I want to enjoy our nights together, not jerk awake at her slightest movement, afraid somebody might be stealing her away. Is it too much to ask?”

“No...” Sirius answered his echoing memory.

“You’re the only one of the Marauders that truly understands Quidditch,” James said, a twinkle in his eye. Sirius nodded, grinning sloppily. “That makes you a Potter in my book.”

“No!” he repeated, this time in a stronger voice.

Harry made a gurgling noise. Flapping his arms around happily, he tried to crawl over to the empty corner of the room, where a spider was now sitting, watching them menacingly. Lily let out a gasp. “Oh no, Harry. You don’t want to play with that!” she said, laughing at her son’s enthusiasm

“Sirius?” said a new voice. At first Sirius thought he might have imagined it, but he felt the ground beneath him thumping slightly. He also began to hear wailing, like that of a child’s. His head whipped around, and he nearly passed out. Rubeus Hagrid was walking forward, a small child tucked inside his arms.

“Harry?” Sirius choked, standing up and leaping at the pair. Hagrid nodded, tears dripping down his long beard.

“It’s ‘im,” he assured Sirius, who was swaying slightly from shock.

“I saw Lily...but James?” Sirius asked, looking around Hagrid. He expected to see him standing there, looking around for his glasses. He wasn’t there, of course. Sirius’ breathing was shallow. Hagrid slowly shook his head, his big eyes dropping to the ground.

“Burried in a pile o’ rubble. Over there,” he said, pointing behind him. Sirius couldn’t believe it. His best friend...dead. All his fault...

“I’ve killed them...” he whispered. Hagrid frowned in confusion.

“What’d ye say?”

“Lily...James...they’re dead,” Sirius said, looking up at Hagrid like a lost puppy. Harry was looking around wildly, his tiny fists reaching out for the parents he would never have. Sirius nearly collapsed. “Give Harry to me.”

“I can’ do tha’,”Hagrid said, shaking his head. “I’m ter give ‘im to Dumbledore.” Sirius nodded, this made sense.

“All my fault...” Sirius repeated again. He didn’t know what was going on. His whole being tingled with fury. He knew only one thing; Peter betrayed them. Sirius’ teeth clenched. He was going to kill Peter. “Take my motorbike,” he muttered to Hagrid. His thinking became crystal clear as he realized his goals. Nothing else mattered at the moment. “It’s over there,” he said, tossing the keys to the giant of a man. Hagrid nodded numbly. Sirius walked over to his Godson, and laid a hand on his forehead. He frowned as he saw a small lightening-bolt scar. He shared a look with Hagrid, but didn’t mention it. Echoes surrounded him, wrapping around his heart, attempting to suffocate him.

“I’ve failed,” James whispered as the last of his life dripped from his eyes in the form of tears. “I’ve failed...”

“No James...” Sirius muttered, kissing his Godson on the forehead. “You haven’t failed....”

A/N: *SOBBING* Please review!!! Help to dry my tears!!!


Chapter 39: All Good Things
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Chapter Thirty-Nine~*~All Good Things


Heather finally managed to get out of the door. She wasn’t sure where she wanted to go. All she knew was that she had to find Sirius. She prayed that he was able to find the Potters and make sure they were safe. Hopefully he had found Dumbledore too, and told him. A twinge of guilt ran through her as she realized that she should stay at home in case the Head Master tried to contact her. She ignored it, however. The anxiety over her friend’s safety had become unbearable. She slammed her feet to the ground one by one, trying to find a place to apparate that would be out of the sight of the many muggle houses that surrounded her. She didn’t get very far, however, when she heard a rather large commotion down another street. She ignored the yelling and screaming until a small piece of it filled her senses like a terrifying poison.

“You traitor! You traitor! They’re dead now! THEY’RE DEAD!” an insane voice was screaming. Heather’s eyes widened. She knew that voice all too well. Sirius!

~~

“I’m sorry, Sirius. You don’t understand! The circumstances!” Peter blabbered.

“I don’t give a damn about circumstances! YOU BETRAYED YOUR FRIENDS!” Sirius bellowed, his wand raised high into the air. He ignored the muttering of the gathering crowd. They all looked on with some amusement. Most of them didn’t understand the threat the sticks the men had in their hands posed. What were they going to do to do? Poke each other?

“Do you know why? Sirius? Did you ever bother to ask me why?” Peter yelled, growing red in the face. “You and your pathetic Order killed the one thing in my life that I loved. I’ve never had anything, Sirius. And the one thing I did have, it was taken away from me!”

“What the hell are you talking about, Peter? Nothing was ever ripped from you! We were your friends! We helped you out of every scrape! We even forgave you the most unforgivable things!” Sirius yelled meaningfully. “And how do you repay us!”

Peter shuffled backwards as Sirius’ temper rose. He knew Sirius would most likely kill him, but he had a plan. He watched as more and more people crowded around them, wondering if they should intervene. They were all muggles. That wouldn’t do. He needed to wait until a witch or wizard got there. Then he could start screaming his lies. Until that time, he needed to keep Sirius at bay.

“Sirius, I didn’t know where else to turn. I–” Peter began.

“JAMES! LILY!” Sirius interrupted, his whole body shaking. “They never did anything wrong, and you–”

But it was Peter’s turn to interrupt. He had just seen an Auror trying to fight his way through the crowd. It was time to start the show....

“You killed them! You killed Lily and James!” Peter screamed at the top of his lungs. Sirius was taken off guard by this change in the conversation. “MY FRIENDS! YOU KILLED LILY AND JAMES POTTER! YOU SOLD THEM TO THE DARK LORD!” Sirius’ eyes filled with rage, and his raised wand was shaking in his hand. He pulled it up, about to curse the little bastard to within an inch of his life. Before he could get a spell out, however, a huge explosion engulfed the surroundings. He was knocked off his feet, and screams filled the air. His head pounded, and he was having trouble holding onto sane thoughts. People were running everywhere, screaming and crying. Sirius slowly stood up, looking around for Peter. He didn’t see him. He had disappeared!

Then he spotted something. No, he realized! Peter hadn’t vanished.... A large rat was scuttling through the crowd, running as fast as its little legs would carry it. “Peter,” Sirius hissed. He raised his wand, about to kill the little murderer.

“Expelliarmus!” said a new voice. He turned and saw an Auror pointing his wand straight at him. His eyes widened. Why was he aiming at him and not at the rat?! Then he realized what Peter had done, and quite cleverly, he had to admit. This man thought that he was the culprit!

“I’m not the one you want,” Sirius yelled, but the Auror ignored him. He was jerked around by three strong men as hand-cuffs slammed across his wrists. Everything struck him then. This was insane! He was insane! Realization of what would come next overwhelmed him. Pain and frustration welled up inside him to such a magnitude that he burst out laughing. The Auror looked incredibly surprised, but Sirius couldn’t stop himself from laughing. Tears rolled down his face, his heart broke, and he knew that he would most likely be in Azkaban for the rest of his life. Still, he laughed on, most-likely for the last time of his existence.

~~

Heather watched in awe as people screamed and cried. Dead bodies littered the ground. She watched as her fiancé laughed like a madman. She didn’t know what to do. What had just happened? She had seen the explosion, but Peter’s body was nowhere to be seen. Was Sirius’ spell so large that it had completely obliterated him? She covered her mouth with a trembling hand. The man she loved had just killed at least thirteen people! It had been an accident, of course. Sirius could never do such a thing, even if it was going to include killing Peter. But now he wasn’t acting like the Sirius she knew. He was acting like a psycho. She watched as an Auror slapped hand-cuffs on him, and her breath was knocked out of her lungs. They were going to take him to Azkaban!

“NO! SIRIUS!!!” she yelled. She couldn’t think straight. Sirius had killed all of these people! Should he go to Azkaban for it? No, he didn’t mean it. She hovered on indecision until she spotted something out of the corner of her eye. A rat was scurrying away as quickly as it could. Peter! Sirius hadn’t killed Peter at all! She had to decide then. Who did she trust more? Sirius or the Aurors? Had Sirius killed all these people? She stood frozen for long seconds.

No.

It hadn’t been Sirius. He was innocent. Now it made sense. The Potters.... Her heart thudded to a halt in her chest. Peter must have betrayed them! She immediately wanted to kill Peter herself, but now she had more important things to worry about...like the fact that Sirius was being hauled him away for a crime he hadn’t even committed.

“STOP! YOU’VE GOT THE WRONG MAN!” she bellowed, fighting through the crowd. If they took Sirius to Azkaban, he would surely go insane. “SIRIUS!” But, ignoring the rules of secrecy now that so many muggles had seen this already, the Auror holding him captive had dissaperated, taking Sirius with him. “Sirius...” she murmured in disbelief. What should she do now? She couldn’t let Sirius go to Azkaban! He hadn’t done anything wrong.... But how could she prove that? Her heartbeat was going wild, and she thought she might burst into tears. But she didn’t allow herself to do that. If she did that, it would be like she was already giving up.

She would never let this rest. She would go to Dumbledore. She had to get Sirius out. There would certainly be a trial for him, and she would free him. But she needed proof! She just had to think. Now she was having trouble, however, as her brain seemed scrambled. She was feeling very dizzy, and soon she began to realize what was happening.

Damn! Not another one! Not now! She seemed to be having one vision every hour! She quickly moved to the sidewalk, not wanting to have a vision right in the middle of the road. Once on the sidewalk, she sat down, and allowed her own dreams to consume her.

“Please, let it be good news, let it be good....” she drifted off, the sentence still on her tongue.

She sat up, realizing that her vision must be over, except that she wasn’t where she remembered sitting down. She was at home. Not at the home she shared with Sirius, but at the home she had lived in as a child. Her heart contracted, and she thought she’d died. Never had she imagined that she would return to this place. She was standing in the middle of her kitchen. Tears welled up in her eyes as she remembered the last time she had stood here.

“Brings back happy memories, doesn’t it?” said a familiar voice. Heather looked around and tripped backwards. Another Heather was sitting at the kitchen table. She looked different though. She looked... older.

“Are you...” Heather began, but the older Heather nodded.

“I’m you. About sixteen years from now,” she said, smiling happily. Heather didn’t know what to say. It was the most bizarre thing she had ever experience. Sure, she had talked to herself, complaining about housework and so on, but this was a little different, to put it mildly.

“This isn’t a normal vision is it?” she asked. The older Heather looked as though she was thinking.

“Well, I am from the future, but this time you can interact with me. The only reason for that is because I’m having a vision too. I’m having a vision about my future when I’m talking to you in a vision, if that makes any sense. And you’re having a vision about me talking to you in about sixteen years. You’ll understand one day, don’t worry,” she added, seeing her younger self looking ready to vomit.

“So why am I seeing this? What is the point?” the younger asked the older.

“I’ve come to tell you that there is a way you can save Sirius, though it will take time! Fifteen years, to be exact. In fifteen years, something will happen to Sirius in the Ministry of Magic. It’s in the Department of Mysteries. It will only happen, however, if you live in the Veil,” the older Heather said wisely.

“The Veil? How? When? Where? I’m so confused!” Heather replied, running her hands through her hair. The older Heather nodded.

“You will live inside the Veil, for fifteen years, with the other residents. In June of the year 1996, Sirius will join you in the Veil for the rest of your lives. You will be isolated completely from the rest of the world, but you will be together, and happy. This is the choice I’ve made, but you must make your own choice. The fifteen years you will spend in this place will be very trying, and you’ll be unsure everyday of your life if you will ever see Sirius again. You must decide if it’s worth it.”

“What happens if I choose not to live in a Veil?” Heather asked her future. She was trembling now.

“I don’t know, as I didn’t choose that path,” she answered. Then she smiled. “I remember how you’re feeling, and I’m glad I’m through with it,” she whispered. “Will you choose the path I have chosen? Will you wait for him? Or will you let fate decide everything?”

Silence fell over the kitchen, and Heather joined herself at the table. She was thinking hard. She looked around, her emotions running away with her imagination. What if all this was a scam, a lie? What if none of this was real?

“It’s real. You can trust me on that,” the older Heather said reassuringly.

“Can you read my mind or something?!” Heather screamed in fear. The older Heather laughed.

“I’m you, remember? I remember this like it was yesterday. I know exactly what’s going through your head.”

“What does this Veil do?” the present-day Heather finally asked. Her future smiled, nodding.

“It is another option for the privileged. Some people, if they are lucky, are granted the option of living inside a Veil. It is a peaceful village, created many years ago. Mostly wizards who wish to give up the rest of their lives to study. It’s a place full of knowledge, and understanding. It’s a place where people keep to themselves. You’ll be lonely, for those years,” she explained.

“How do I get in?” the young Heather asked, getting more and more nervous.

“You must enlist his help,” she whispered.

“Whose help?”

His,” she said impatiently. Heather still didn’t understand.

“What’s his name?” she attempted.

“He doesn’t have one!” and then she understood. It was the little blue-haired man! The one she called Orin!

“Where do I find him?”

“He will find you. I sent him to help.”

“You mean he’s been following me around these past months because you sent him?” Heather asked her wiser self in awe.

“He’s quite annoying, isn’t he?” she replied with a laugh. The younger nodded, rolling her eyes. “He will lead you to the Veil, and take care of all the arrangements. All you need to do is agree,” she muttered. Heather was thinking too hard now. Should she do it? She wanted to see Sirius again, obviously. But she would have to wait by herself for fifteen years. That was a long time! Would it be worth it....

“I’ve made my decision,” she finally said. The older Heather nodded, smiling.

“I know you have,” she whispered. “If you’re ready to leave, you know the way out.”

“The door,” the younger Heather said, standing up. She didn’t have much time. She smiled. “See you later,” she said.

“Much later,” the older Heather replied, also standing up from the table. Heather was just about to open the door when her future stopped her. “By the way, her name is Emma,” she whispered.

“Who?” asked the younger, confused.

“Your daughter....”


Heather opened her eyes, and she took a little while to adjust. It didn’t take her long, however, to see cat-like eyes staring at her. She leapt up into the air.

“Tyde! What on earth are you doing here?” she said, picking him up. She dropped him again, however, when he began to answer her.

“I see you’ve decided your path,” he said, his ears twitching. She practically fell over, her eyes bugging out of her head. Her nerves were pulled tight, and she didn’t feel like dealing with anything else.

“Who are you?” she stammered.

“I can’t tell you,” he said. That did it. Heather picked up that cat again and held it at arms length, glaring intensely at it.

“Listen to me, cat. I’ve witnessed murders, my fiancé has just been dragged off to Azkaban for something he didn’t do, Lily is dead, James is dead, Harry is Merlin-knows-where, I’ve had two visions in the same day and one of them includes talking to myself from the future about my...baby...” she trailed, off, her eyes widening in realization as she laid a hand on her stomach.

“Well, the day isn’t over yet! Anyways, what I meant, dear girl, is that I can’t tell you my name because I don’t have one!” and with that, Tyde turned into the orange-eyed man.

“Orin!” Heather gasped, throwing the man from her as thoughts of a child left her in shock.

“My name isn’t Orin, young girl. Today, my name is Kale,” he said self-importantly.

“Fine, Kale, whatever. In the future I told myself that I needed to find you and–” she tried to explain, but he held up a hand for silence.

“I know. I understand. You’re the one who sent me, remember?” he asked. Heather just shrugged. She was so confused right now, she didn’t really care. She just wanted somebody to tell her what to do. She didn’t want to think of the why, or understand the how.

“Yes, well I’ve made my decision,” she said.

“I know. I’ve been through all of this before,” he said, smiling as she looked ready to strangle him. “What we need to do is get you into the Veil. Do you remember that?” Heather nodded numbly. “It will be a portal to a separate little world. A perfect world, but only you and the select few will exist in it, until somebody else happens upon it. That somebody will be Sirius Black.”

“I don’t understand how you know this for certain!” Heather argued.

“Because it has already happened in the future, don’t you see?” Kale said patiently. “Since you have the power of visions, and prophecies, you can connect with the past in the form of the future!”

Heather continued to look puzzled, but Kale only smiled.

“Come, we must meet a friend of mine. He will show you the way to the Veil,” Kale said, grabbing her hand and dragging her along.

“Wait, why do we have to meet your friend? Why can’t I just go into the Veil?” she asked. Kale let out a loud laugh.

“It is highly guarded. Don’t be so impatient! My friend Broderick will let you in if I tell him to. He trusts me more than any other being.”

Silence grew then as Heather tried to sort it all out in her mind. “Kale?” she asked finally, as they walked along.

“Yes?”

“What would you have done if I had decided not to go into the Veil?”

“You wouldn’t have chosen that path,” he said, smiling.

“But what if I had?” she asked impatiently.

“You wouldn’t have,” he answered. She finally gave up, rubbing her hands to her temples. This was all moving too fast for her. She shouldn’t have to make such decisions in a split second! She needed more time. She wanted to ask why they were walking to the Ministry, instead of apparating, but decided she was grateful for the cool night air. Besides, Kale would most likely tell her to quit being impatient. The sound of Sirius’ laughing echoed throughout her ears.

“If I leave now, what will everybody be told?” she asked.

“You will be reported as dead,” Kale said sadly, looking up at her. Heather nodded.

“Right..... Let’s hurry though. We’re wasting precious time,” she whispered. Kale smiled.

“Precious time....”

“Hey, Kale. I don’t understand why I have to go into the Veil now.”

“What do you think will become of you once Sirius is in Azkaban?” Kale asked wisely.

“I don’t know, but maybe I could just try and get Sirius out of Azkaban at the trial,” she said.

“There will be no trial,” Kale said sadly.

“What?!”

“There will be no trial,” he repeated. Heather’s brows furrowed. “This world is falling apart, and wizards are losing their composure. Even Bartemius Crouch, who will sentence Sirius to a life-time of pain and torture without a trial.”

“That’s disgusting,” she hissed in return. Kale nodded his agreement. “But that still doesn’t explain why I can’t just go into the Veil when Sirius does. Why do I have to go fifteen years in advance?”

Kale sighed. “You don’t know this yet, but Alice and Frank are not as safe and whole as you might think.”

“What do you mean?” Heather asked urgently. “They aren’t....”

“They are not dead. Worse,” Kale said with tears in his eyes. “They were tortured. That is why you couldn’t find Dumbledore. He was tending to their broken bodies. Neville, their son, I’m glad to say is perfectly alright.”

Heather’s eyes filled with tears.

“They’ve been driven to insanity,” Kale muttered. Heather let out a sob. “This will happen to you if you stay here. You’re not safe. Voldemort has been diminished, but he isn’t completely defeated. His followers are still at large, and you will most definitely be one of their targets. They are going to want answers. They don’t understand why Voldemort is no longer strong, and they will torture the answers out of you.”

“Is this for certain?” she asked.

“Nothing is certain,” Kale answered. “But it is highly likely. Nobody will come to your defense, either. You were connected to a murderer, in the eyes of the wizarding world. And besides,” he said, smiling now. “You wouldn’t want to risk anything in your condition.”

“What do you mean?” she asked, confused. Kale stopped walking, and looked at her.

“You don’t want to hurt the baby,” he whispered. Heather froze. Then her own words came back to her once again. In her vision, she had told herself that her child would be named Emma. She didn’t think it could possibly be now....

“I’m pregnant...” she said in a hoarse whisper. He nodded, his wrinkled eyes crackling with orange joy. She thought of a child growing inside her, exposed to this world and being dragged into a war. She pictured herself being tortured...and what that would do to her child. “Emma....”

“Are you ready?” Kale asked, and held out his hand. Heather looked confused.

“I thought we were going to walk,” she said.

“Only until you had time to think. I wouldn’t dream of rushing things. But now you understand, and you’ve decided with distinction. Let us meet with Broderick.”

CRACK!

Heather spun on her feet, trying not to stumble. She steadied herself by grabbing onto a cool glass desk. Its cold feeling penetrated her sweaty palms, calming her. She looked around, and saw Kale floating a little off the ground like a miniature Genie. Her eyes pushed out of her head as she looked around. She was standing in what looked like an office, but it wasn’t an ordinary office. Everything in it was made from ice! She pulled her hand away from the desk that she had thought was glass. The chairs were ice, and the floor was ice. It was the most unwelcome room she had ever entered.

“Rhin,” the man said in a very toneless voice. He swept from his seat and stood straight.

“Hello, Broderick. I hate to inform you, however, that my name is not Rhin today, but Kale!”

“Kale,” the man repeated, and if not for the shine of great knowledge in his eyes, Heather might have thought him daft. She read on the name plate he had on his desk ‘Broderick Bode.’

“I’m sure you didn’t forget our appointment this evening?” Kale said kindly.

“Of course not,” Broderick said blankly. Then his eyes shot to Heather. “Malfoy,” he said with no emotion. Heather couldn’t tell if he approved of her or not. She decided she didn’t like this man. He was too secretive!

“I prefer that you call me Heather,” she said in the same cold voice he used. It could almost be called mocking him. He sensed it and his lips twitched slightly.

“We would like to begin. You remember what I asked you to do?” Kale said. Broderick nodded thickly.

“Come,” he said. As Heather and Kale followed, Heather whispered to him.

“How do you know this guy?” she asked. She could tell Broderick was listening intently, but she didn’t really care.

“I helped him out of a tight spot,” Kale said. Broderick got very stiff then. “But I will not go into details.” The big hulking man visibly relaxed. Silence grew as they walked down narrow hallways, and passed at least a hundred different doors. Some from which odd noises were coming.

“Are we almost there?” Heather dared to whisper. Kale smiled and nodded, but said nothing. Many minutes later they reached a rather boring looking door. Broderick opened it without ceremony, and stood aside as Heather and Kale entered. Once Broderick had closed the door, all was black, and Heather heard an odd scraping noise. She realized that the doors were rearranging themselves! How would they find their way now? Once the noise stopped, the lights clicked back on. Broderick did not show any signs of discouragement as he made a beeline to the door his narrow eyes were glaring at. Heather followed him with great trepidation, with Kale smiling softly, as if he was returning home.

Heather nearly fell over as she walked into the huge room. It like a roman amphitheatre, with seats all around the sides, and a huge stone dais right in the middle. On the dais she expected there to be a grand thrown, but instead, a large arch stood tall and leering at her. A silky cloth hung from it, and was swaying lightly in the non-existent breeze. Her breath left her chest then, as she realized there was no turning back.

“I think we can handle the rest ourselves, thank you, Broderick,” Kale whispered, and Broderick grunted a farewell before leaving. Heather was of a mind to yell at him that, never-mind, she didn’t really want to go through the veil. She was terrified. The reality of it all hit her then. She would live in that veil for fifteen years, with nobody to talk to except people or great knowledge, or with a good reason to be there. What good reason did she have to go there? Her future had told her that only the privileged got to go in. Why was she so privileged?

“Because you hold a great power beyond anybody in that veil,” Kale explained. Heather was so flustered, she didn’t bother to ask if he’d read her mind or not. “The power you hold is love. You love Sirius so much, you’re willing to give up fifteen years of your life for him.”

“He’ll have a daughter...” she whispered, laying a hand to her stomach. “All those years, he’ll have no idea. If only there was a way I could tell him!”

“It’s best he doesn’t know,” Kale comforted, laying a hand on her shoulder, and guiding her towards the dais. As they neared, Heather distinctly heard voices. The hairs on the back of her neck stood up.

“Who is talking?” she asked, nervously. Kale listened, and then grinned.

“It’s the residents. Notice how you instantly want to go in there?” he asked. Heather nodded, resisting the urge to fall through the veil. “They do get lonely in there, so they try and persuade people to join them. Some of them were good friends of mine,” he added with a chuckle. “In fact, I’m certain I hear Dan in there!” he put a hand to his ear. Heather laughed, but it was nervous, and humorless. “Well now, dear girl, now or never!”

“Right now?” Heather asked, her voice choking up. Kale nodded. She took a deep breath, closing her eyes. She played with the engagement ring on her finger as sweet memories washed over her.

“I owe you so much...I...” she broke off. She didn’t want to admit her love to him. If he didn’t love her back, she didn’t want to feel that terrible rejection. He had never actually said the words to her. She looked away hurriedly. Sirius seemed to be reading her mind. He placed his hand under her chin, urging her to look him in the eye.

“I love you, Heather Malfoy,” he said softly. Heather smiled, tears in her eyes.

“I love you too,” she muttered, and he pulled her slowly into a warm, tender kiss.


Heather laughed out loud, remembering the night they had confessed their feelings towards each other. It seemed like hundreds of years ago. Her heart ached, and she took a deep breath. Turning to face her future, she stepped towards the whispering veil, while her heart fluttered madly in her chest. This had to be the biggest decision she would ever make. But the way she saw it, she had decided the minute Sirius had been hauled off to Azkaban...the minute she had lost everything.... But now she had gained so much. She had gained a second chance...and a daughter. A warm smile drifted across her lips.

The voices still beckoned, seemingly getting louder and louder. Slowly, she looked down at the ring on her finger. She brought it to her lips. She remembered herself saying she would be lonely, but now didn’t agree. Sirius had not left her alone. He had left her with all the memories of the past, and the promise of a future.

“We did it, Sirius,” she muttered, feeling as if he could hear her. “It doesn’t look like it yet, but we beat the bad guys.” She put a foot in the veil, and felt her fear leaving her. This was her path, and there was no turning back...no regrets.... “I’ll be waiting for you,” she whispered. Then she smiled to herself, and thought of the child now growing withing her. “We both will,” and with that, she laid a hand on her stomach, closed her eyes, and stepped into a new life, leaving it all behind, and taking it all with her. Her heart was set, her mind was steady, but most of all, her love for Sirius Black was as strong as ever.


~~~***The End***~~~



A/N: TADAA! That’s my story! Big thanks to everybody who stayed with the story, and to those who took the time to review! I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it=0) Now, I Have one last request, before we part (unless I decide to write a sequel or another story, that is) Leave me a review answering me this: What was your favorite chapter? I’d greatly appreciate it. Oh, and by the way........ FLAMINGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!





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