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Chapter Six: Heartbeat

Isabelle slammed her dormitory door behind her so hard that a vase holding fresh flowers fell off her dresser and shattered on the floor. Instinctively she turned around suddenly and pulled out her wand and muttered ‘Reparo.’ She threw her wand on her bed and went to sit on her window-sill; she knew she had only a few moments before Lily would barge in behind her.

She needed to collect herself, she couldn’t let the students of Hogwarts see her in the state she was at this moment. Isabelle knew something like this would happen ever since Snape had found out about her little secret. At the moment she felt weak, weaker than she had ever felt in her entire life. To be completely honest she felt a bit ashamed about the situation, she had always been the strong one, the one who never let anything get her down; now she was a complete mess.

“Isabelle!” Lily had barged in right behind her and closed the door. “I am so--”

As Lily was about to catapult into a very long winded speech concerning how very sorry she was about making sure no one saw her reflection in the mirror Sirius swung the door open and ran in towards Isabelle.

“What’s wrong? Are you okay?” Sirius panted. He was half dressed upon barging into the girl’s dormitory; he had on a school shirt and tie, but he only donned boxers and socks on his bottom half. He had quite literally just woken up from a distant, yet very vivid memory of happier times between Isabelle and him and it was hard to shake the past out of the present.

Isabelle looked up at Sirius and gently got up off the bed to walk towards her school bag, which was thrown haphazardly near the window. She pulled out a few pieces of parchment and handed them to Sirius, his face hardened instantly. Upon the parchment were crude words of disgust about Isabelle’s pregnancy; everything they had worked so hard to keep secret for these past eight months was now in the open thanks to Severus Snape.

“People hexed her in the hallways,” Lily grudgingly added.

“The burns from the hexes will probably stay there for a few days, but I think I know something that Slughorn has in his office that may be able to make it heal a lot faster. I’m sure he’d give me some, let me go get it. Isabelle, is that okay?”

“She’ll be fine,” Sirius retorted in an almost arrogant manner, “I’m here.”

Lily condescendingly laughed. “Yeah, lot of good you did last time you were alone with her.”

“Lily, stop it!” Isabelle snapped; she was sticking up for Sirius, something she never thought she’d do again. “Yes, thank you, please go get whatever you think will work in Slughorn’s office.”

“God, Izze.” Sirius commented after Lily had left the room. He then pulled her into his chest and put his chin atop her head; the surprising thing was that Isabelle didn’t fight it, but she just folded into his chest. “I’m so sorry.”

Isabelle backed away from Sirius embrace and looked up at him. “It’s a little late for that, isn’t it?”

“I am in here to find out what was wrong, not to start another argument about what I did wrong or how the situation could be a lot better than it is now,” Sirius sneered. He saw the hurt that was almost automatically inflicted upon the girl in front of him and he recoiled. “Izze, I’m sorry. Please... just... I don’t know what I’m supposed to say.” Sirius now stepped away from Isabelle and turned his back on her has he walked to the window. He rested one hand on his hips and the other was leaning on the stone wall. “If I could take it back, I would. If I could have saved you from all of this, Izze, I would. I know it’s after the fact and there may be no use in me telling you this, but I have to be honest. I wish I never came back from Hogsmeade that day, it was against my better judgement. I knew you weren’t ready just for some twisted reason I convinced myself that you were-- Isabelle I knew it was wrong!”

There was silence in the room for a few moments and then Sirius felt a pair of familiar arms twist around his waist and pull him into a bittersweet embrace. Isabelle, for the first time since their ‘encounter’ many months ago had hugged Sirius on her own accord. This was something that may not mean much to many, but it meant very much to Sirius.

“Ouch!” Isabelle yelled as she jumped back from Sirius.

He was taken by surprise. “I’m sorry-- what did I do?”

Isabelle looked up into his gray eyes and smiled. “No, it’s not you, it’s him. He kicked me. He actually does that a lot sometimes, it gets to be quite annoying.” She walked back to the bed and sat upon it, unaware that Sirius was completely frozen at the other end of the room.

“Him?” Sirius stammered, trying to catch his breath. “We’re having a son?” He began to walk in circles in the girl’s dormitory with both hands griping through his trademark hair. Sirius was attempting to grasp something that, at the moment, seemed rather difficult. “A boy! A son! Our son!”

Isabelle watched Sirius walk around the room like a complete idiot without saying anything, she thought it was better to give him those few moments of sheer bliss before pulling him back into the bitterness of reality. She could’ve sworn, if only for a second, that she saw the sparkle return to his gray eyes. “Yes, I guess I didn’t tell you that.”

“What are we going to name him?” Sirius queried. He was now sitting on the foot of Isabelle’s bed with wide-eyed anticipation.

She looked down and started fidgeting with her nails. Of course that topic had came across her mind very often, but she never allowed her mind to pursue it. Isabelle hadn’t made up her mind on whether or not she was going to raise the child by herself or give it up to foster care. Naturally, she would love to have a child of her own, but there were many realistic limitations that were very clear. Isabelle’s family wouldn’t allot her any money for the child and she wasn’t trained in anything to make a career out of it. The smart thing to do would be to give the child up in hopes that he would live a far better life than she could’ve ever offered him.

“Isabelle?” Sirius questioned.

“I haven’t thought about it.”

Sirius started laughing is trademark bark-like laughter. “Isabelle,” he began as he narrowed his eyes, “you are one of the worst liars that I know, so I think you should just tell me what name you had in mind.”

She sat before him, defeated. It was probably easier to just give up now instead of dragging the lie further out. “Ambrose.”

“Ambrose Black,” Sirius said with an heir of great respect. He smiled haughtily to himself and looked towards Isabelle once again. “It’s perfect.”

Isabelle didn’t want to get into this conversation with Sirius. Conversations about baby names were sure to evoke emotions that would ultimately lead to attachments: something that she surely didn’t want. She tore her eyes away from Sirius’ glistening glare and rolled over onto her side, clutching her pillow for support.

“James could be the godfather!” Sirius, out of no where, shouted; he obviously took no mention to Isabelle’s lack of interest in the topic. “I’m sure he would do the same for me; but what about Remus? Surely he wouldn’t mind or maybe Ambrose can have two godfathers. Oh, and then there’s Lily as the godmother...”

As Sirius continued to rattle on about baby plans each and every word seemed to cut Isabelle like a knife. Each word was opening the wound that she had tried so hard to keep closed these past months. The answer to her nagging question was now clear: she couldn’t keep the child for herself and neither could Sirius. The child would undoubtedly be better off without their families, just as they both would have. The Pureblood world was far too complicated of a world to live in when one had other options.

“You will stop seeing her.”

“Like hell I will!” Sirius threw is head back in laughter from the ridiculous attempt at an order.

His father was standing in front of him with hands in his pockets on New Year’s Day, one day after Regulus rudely divulged the secret that Sirius and Isabelle had been dating. He stormed into the room a few minutes prior demanding that Sirius break all ties with Isabelle. He believed that she was a great asset to the pureblood world and therefore should be saved for someone that was worthy of her.

“You make her sound like some sort of prize!” Sirius yelled, his nostril’s flaring. His hands and teeth were clenched. “I won’t give her up, if she wants to leave me then so be it, but as long as she wants to be at my side we will be together.”

Orion stared at his son with the same piercing gray eyes that his son inherited. “She belongs with someone worthy, like Regulus-- not you,” he snarled. “It’s one thing to become a dishonor to your family, but don’t you dare bring poor Isabelle along with you.”

Sirius continued to become more and more outraged by the second. “I am not forcing her to be with me, it’s by her own accord. You don’t know her, maybe she’s just like me, maybe she doesn’t want anything to do with her family! ”

“How dare you make claims about Edward Faulkner’s family!” Orion raised his wand slightly as if a threat to Sirius that he was treading on dangerously thin ice.

“You don’t know her,” Sirius bellowed. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing, this was completely outrageous.

“You don’t either, you’re just a boy!” Sirius’ mother, Walburga, had just walked into the room and had obviously decided that she was going to join the conversation that she was so intent on listening to for the past ten minutes.

Sirius’ head whipped around towards his mother as he stood up and faced her. “I know I love her.” His voice was now deep and his words came out particularly slow. He hadn’t told Isabelle that he loved her, in fact he, until this point, had never said it to anyone. This moment was a realization that was quite strange to Sirius, but so undoubtedly true. “Until she looks me in the face,” he continued since his parents were both in shock by his previous words, “and tells me that she doesn’t love me, I will be there.”

The words came as a slap in the face to both of his parents, but his mother took the initiative and answered him. “You know nothing of love, Sirius.”

There were a few moments of silence and reflection between all three individuals until Orion decided that there was more to say. “As long as you live under my roof, Sirius, you will abide by my rules. You will send an owl to Isabelle right now and you will break ties with her immediately. If you don’t, rest assured I will do it for you.”

Sirius then made a choice about something that he had been contemplating for quite some time. He shrugged and began to speak: “Then I guess I don’t live here anymore.” He flicked his wand and his bags started to pack themselves while his parents stood in shock.

Sirius sat on the foot of Isabelle’s bed rattling off thoughts about their son, when he noticed that she had become quite unresponsive to the conversation. “Isabelle?” he questioned. She still didn’t answer.

He shifted his weight and looked towards Isabelle curled up into a ball holding her pillow and repeated her name. To his dismay she still didn’t answer him. At this point Sirius got up off of the foot of his bed and went towards her, maybe she had fallen asleep.

“Isabelle!” Sirius called again as he shook her; she didn’t budge. She looked peaceful, as though she was sleeping, but upon closer inspection Sirius realized that she wasn’t breathing. “Isabelle!” he screamed again. He turned her over and put his ear to her chest--there was no noise, no heartbeat.

A/N: Hi, guys! Sorry this chapter took a little bit of time to write. I just started college and it's been more than hectic, as I'm sure many of you know. I've been writing in drips and drabs along the way and I've finally written enough to warrant a chapter. Now I have to jet to a two and a half hour practice and another class. Ugh.

I hope everyone is well! I have a lot of the story thought out already, so now I must string it all together. I hope everyone is enjoying it.

As always, please review. :)

And of course, huge thanks to tehcutestEM for the chapter banner :D

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