Chapter 1 : Diagon Alley
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The sun was setting in Landsdowne; its rays were shining in through the front window of the Massaro household, where a man and his daughter sat in silence. The only sound that could be heard was the scratching of a quill on recently bought parchment. The girl sat in a comfortable armchair, leaning over the paper as she focused hard on her potions essay. Her father sat next to the fire reading over a report for the Ministry. As the heat from the fire became too much, he pulled up the sleeves of his robe, revealing an odd shaped burn on his forearm.
'What's that on your arm?' the girl, Sita Massaro, asked quietly, raising her head slightly to meet his gaze. She was the only girl in a long line of Massaro pure bloods, a family of wealthy landowners. Slowly, her father met her gaze. There was a look of warning in his eyes as he pulled down his sleeve. He didn't reply; instead, he stood and left the room. Sita rolled her eyes and slouched back in her chair for a moment. What was it? Sighing, she straightened and went back to finishing her Potions essay.
The next day Sita set off to meet her friends in Diagon Alley. There was no set time or place; there never was, yet they usually managed to find each other. Her father had given her a generous amount of money and told her not to waste it.
'I might not be here when you come back; you know how to get in,' he informed with a false smile. Sita nodded slowly, their house had a similar system to Diagon Alley. Tap the third brick to the right of the plaque on the wall twice. Sita was seventeen, but still hadn't gotten her apparition license. She hadn't passed the first time, and now she had to wait until Christmas. Her friend Rabastan Lestrange had got his, which Sita found highly annoying since all he did now was talk about it in their letters.
'Where are you going?' Sita asked.
Her father stared at her blankly for a moment before replying. 'I'm meeting Lucius and a few friends. We may be late.'
Of course he was meeting Lucius. He was always meeting Lucius. She didn't like Lucius. He was one of those pure blood maniacs who supported a wizarding madman by the name of 'Lord' Voldemort. Sita may be a Slytherin, and a proud Slytherin, but she didn't believe in the pure blood mania that seemed to grip the House.
'Have fun,' she replied shortly, a false smile in place. Her father stared at her as she walked out; she could feel his eyes on her back. Sita ignored it; she had become very good at that over the summer. Her pace quickened as she realised the time. Her train left in the next ten minutes. Their house lay a bit out. London could be reached by bus and the underground. Sita preferred the Underground.
Sita Massaro strode into the Leaky Cauldron without so much as a glance at the young man behind the counter.. She tapped the bricks in a familiar, casual fashion. As the wall moved to reveal Diagon Alley, she pushed back her hair and walked purposefully up the street. In the back pocket of her stonewashed jeans was the book list for her final year of Hogwarts.
Sita stopped outside Fortescue's and considered buying an ice cream, but decided against it when she saw a group of four boys her age around a table. Her upper lip curled slightly with distaste as she recognised them as Potter and his friends. Idiots, all of them – except Sirius.
Sirius Black was no idiot. He was strong. He stood up to his parents when he disagreed with them. Why didn't Sita do the same? She despised what her father had become. Before her mother died he had been a kind man. They had been so close. But since her mothers death, he had been distant.
This was part of why Sita disliked Lucius: she blamed him for her father’s sudden change. Sita continued to stare in the window at Sirius. Was she too weak? She didn’t think so. Then again, Sirius was in Gryffindor, so he was clearly braver than her. Sita glared at her reflection in a window; she disliked having to admit inferiority to a Gryffindor.
When she reached Flourish & Blotts she was pleased to see Yaxley, who was rooting around for a new Herbology book. Grabbing one from a well marked shelf, Sita approached him; when she got within a foot she held up the copy in front of his face with her slim hand and let out a mock sigh. Tobias glanced up at her and grinned at her as he plucked the book from her hand.
'Having a good summer?' he asked as he added it to his pile.
'So-so,' Sita shrugged. Her father had been worse this summer than she remembered. He'd become more and more of a pure blood maniac. She pretended not to notice, but Sita knew he'd been jinxing the Muggles nearby. She frowned, remembering how she'd had to lie to the Ministry worker. He'd been very upset when he couldn't get the sugar bowl to stop biting. All the while her father had been out with Malfoy, probably hexing someone else.
Sita smiled weakly at Tobias who had been staring at her. 'Sorry,' she apologised quickly, before leaving to find her own books. Sita thought she saw a look of sympathy from Tobias, but she was sure she must have been mistaken. Tobias wasn't one to show sympathy, not with a father like his. If Tobias did anything out of line he got a howler, no questions asked. There had been many times that Sita and Rabastan had needed to apologise to Tobias after breakfasts for getting him into trouble. Rabastan and Sita were punished too, but they never got Howlers. Their parents wouldn't allow their family name to be 'soiled' in front of the entire school, as Sita's father once put it after a nasty incident with that idiot Evans and the Giant Squid.
Crouch went up to the till to pay while Sita pulled out her own list and scanned through the books she would need. Her OWL results had been average, other than the 'O' in Transfiguration, which was rare. She had nearly passed everything, the exception being Care of Magical Creatures; she had lost her Bowtruckle in a tree and received a nasty burn on her hand from mishandling a fire crab. Sita was terrible with anything to do with plants or animals.
'Damn Slughorn,' she muttered as she picked another book off the shelf. She had barely passed Herbology, and yet she had been received an 'E' in Potions. Professor Slughorn had a lot to do with that; she was one of his 'favourites', as Rabastan constantly reminded her. Slughorn had insisted that she keep it up and her father had agreed.
Sita quickly found her other books – Transfiguration, DADA, Charms and History of Magic. She stared again at the Potions book, knowing she was going to regret taking it at NEWT level.
Tobias waited outside for Sita while she bought her books. They decided to find their other two friends before going to get lunch. Sita knew at once where to find Rabastan; there had been a new broom released the other day, a Nimbus 1700. Both Sita and Rabastan played for the Slytherin team. Rabastan was a chaser and Sita played Seeker. They made their way to the shop, and Sita smirked upon seeing Rabastan's tall figure through the window of Quality Quidditch Supplies.
'Any good?' she asked him as she smacked his back lightly. Rabastan turned quickly; his pale blue eyes darted over the two before he smiled coolly at them both.
'See for yourself,' he sneered playfully, stepping aside as she walked forward. A broom gleamed up at her from the glass case below. Its smooth handle had its name imprinted in a bold, golden text that read 'Nimbus 1700.'
'It's beautiful,' Sita murmured; no broom could be more unlike her shoddy old Cleansweep. Rabastan nodded as he stared at it over her shoulder. Tobias let out a small gasp as he looked at the price.
'I know, and the sad thing is, it's worth it,' said a voice from behind the three. Sita turned to see her friend Sierra staring at them with a bemused expression on her face that was half covered by her dark hair. Sierra gave Sita a brief hug before turning her attention to the broom again. 'You should both get one, you know. Final year and all...don't you want to beat those damn Gryffindors?' she said teasingly as she winked at Tobias, who grinned back.
'All this time and you couldn't beat James to the punch darling.' Sierra jeered, shooting Sita an amused glance before continuing. This annoyed Rabastan and Sita; their team had not beaten Gryffindor the entire time they were at school. 'Do you want to be remembered as the Slytherin Seeker who never defeated that pathetic blood traitor Potter?'
Sita kept her eyes locked on the broom; she didn't care about whether blood was pure or impure, let alone about supposed blood traitors, not that she'd ever tell her friends that.
'Do you have enough?' Rabastan asked Sita as he pulled out his money bag. She nodded as she tried to prevent a small smile crossing her face. She wouldn't give Sierra the pleasure of knowing she had convinced her to buy it, but Sita knew Sierra knew she had won when she patted Sita on the shoulder lightly.
'Tobias and I will wait outside,' Sierra said, winking as she led Tobias out. Tobias’s mouth was agape; he was horrified that they were spending that much on a broom.
'I could use a new broom,' Sita admitted thoughtfully, though she knew her father wouldn't be pleased. He had decided her Cleansweep One was perfect for Seeking.
'Two of these,' Rabastan ordered haughtily. Sita noticed him eyeing the shopkeeper’s robes with distaste. She thanked the shopkeeper as he handed her the broom and she poured a small mountain of Galleons out of her money bag. 'Now to Apparate outside,' Rabastan announced with a cocky gleam in his eye that was directed, not too subtly, at Sita, who laughed sarcastically as he cracked away.
The troupe walked back up the street to Fortescue's to buy ice cream. Sita cringed once she realised just how much she had spent on the broom; she was down to her last few Galleons. 'I might pass on getting ice cream. I'm sure there's food at home,' she said airily. The others snickered, earning them a glare.
'There's the traitor,' Rabastan hissed as Sirius came into sight, followed by Potter, Lupin and Pettigrew. Sita said nothing as Tobias and Sierra voiced their disgust.
'And that git Potter.' Tobias spat as Potter leaned on Black as he laughed out loud at something Pettigrew had said. Sita imitated Potter by hanging off Sierra and pulling her down to the ground. She knew Rabastan would be giving them a filthy look, but she didn't care. Sita tried to stand but got caught in Sierra’s robes and fell back down. Sierra laughed hysterically at her.
'Oh, get up,' Rabastan snapped, managing to mostly hide his amusement. The girls stood, Sierra still laughing, and continued to walk. 'Wands ready,' Rabastan muttered as they got closer to Potter and friends. Sita slid her hand around and reached for her wand, which was sitting in her other back pocket.
She wore muggle clothes because she had to walk in through London, Sita also found them more comfortable. She held her wand lightly by her side as if she was playing with it; she noticed Rabastan slide his up his sleeve.
As the crowd cleared Potter pulled out his wand and yelled something, making Tobias jump. Sita followed the direction Potter had pointed and found Snape dangling in the air. Rabastan seemed content to leave Snape dangling there but finally let out a small sigh as Sierra glanced up at him. Rabastan waited for a clear shot between the crowd that was gathering around Potter, composed mainly of Gryffindors. A small jet of crimson light emerged from Rabastan's wand and hit Potter in the lower back, causing him to slump forward. His spell on Snape immediately broke and he fell to the ground hard. Snape yelled his own hex at Potter and ran before Sirius grabbed him.
'Confundus?' Tobias asked as Potter fell to his knees. Rabastan shook his head and slid his wand back into his robes.
'Something Rodolphus taught me. It's called the Vapulo Charm. The victim is unable to focus their strength on anything. They just sit there,' Rabastan explained, motioning to Potter, who hadn't really moved from his awkward kneeling position. Sita smiled softly at the look of concern on Sirius's face as he waved at Potter, attempting to get some sort of reaction. 'Sadly...it does wear off.' Rabastan added, also watching Sirius.
'Lupin, Remus, Slytherins,' the chubby one, Pettigrew, whispered loudly as he nudged Lupin and then slid quickly behind Lupin and Sirius. The uncommon cowardice of that particular Gryffindor never failed to amuse her. Rabastan grinned maliciously as Lupin cast them a wary look. Lupin nudged Sirius, who turned and stared at the four with clear disgust.
'I'll take it you are behind this Lestrange?' Lupin asked calmly, inclining his head to the dazed Potter.
'I think he's accusing you, Rabastan,' Sierra said in a voice of mock shock.
'That's what it sounded like to me,' Tobias added, eyeing the four as if they were something that smelled nasty.
'That was definitely an accusation,' Rabastan agreed, smiling down at Sita, who had brought her hand up, wand in view. The small crowd had fallen back a little as they watched the confrontation. Lupin glanced around helplessly for another Prefect.
'Oh, shut it, we asked Rabastan,’ Sirius snapped angrily, placing a hand on James' shoulder.
‘But Sirius, your friend has offended me. I can't possibly give you an answer now. Although it does look like a fairly well done piece of magic, wouldn't you agree?’ Rabastan replied, motioning with his arms for the others to walk around them with him. Sita hung back a little and stared at Sirius, who was ignoring her. His strong jaw line, perfect teeth, and dark hair were only a few of Sirius’ highlights. Slowly she passed them, keeping her eyes on Sirius. Sirius let out a frustrated noise as they left and glanced down at the still dazed James.
Rabastan curled his lip and muttered something about Mudbloods as they passed Evans on the street. 'I hope Potter is still dazed when she reaches him.' Sita laughed.
When Sita returned home she was surprised to find her father in the kitchen. She noticed his eyes narrow upon seeing the broom handle. She quickly ran upstairs and dumped her books and various items she'd bought.
'Sita Massaro!' yelled her father from downstairs. Sita grimaced and slowly began to make her way down to him. As she had expected, her father yelled at her for hours over the broom. Her pleads of 'but we'll beat Gryffindor' went ignored. She muttered angrily to herself as she went back upstairs into her room upon her fathers orders. She couldn't wait to be finished Hogwarts; then she could buy a house far away from her ignorant father and his pure blood madness.
Sita heard her father pass her room in the morning as he made his way to the stairs.
'What's the mark, Dad?' she asked from through the door. He had locked her in as punishment for “wasting” his money. Sita could imagine him scowling at the door. This vision made her smile smugly to herself.
'It's not important,' He said slowly, with a hint of warning in his voice.
'I will find out, why not just tell me?' she replied in a sing song voice, hiding her surprise that he actually answered. This time, however, there was no response except for the creak of the stairs as her father descended them.
That had been his last chance to tell her on his own, as far as Sita was concerned. She had a feeling Rabastan would be able to tell her what it was; after all, his older brother Rodolphus was friendly with Lucius, too.
-----This is my first fic, so criticism/reviews/tips are greatly appreciated. Also I know James isn't a seeker, but it's needed for the story ;) -----