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?”
“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.
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.
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.”
“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.
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….
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
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