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!”
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