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Chapter 8 : The Truth Is Out
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As Sirius walked down the Charms corridor, he peeled his eyes open in search of James. He hadn’t really inquired his friend about it, seeing as the note advised him not to. It had said that all would be explained at midnight. A curious feeling crept up on him, sending him shivers. He could only wonder what his friend would need to talk to him about.
“Expelliarmus!” a voice shouted from around the corner. Sirius tried to grasp a hold of his wand, but failed. Instead, it flew to the ground next to his cousin, Narcissa. Narcissa’s long blonde hair glistened in the dark, her pale eyes shining in glory.
“Dear, dear cousin,” she emphasized slowly. “So much you have to learn.”
Sirius glared at her, anger bubbling inside of him. She pointed both of her wands at him, a victorious grin fastened upon her face.
“What do you want, Narcissa?” Sirius demanded impatiently. “I’m not here to play any of your demented mind games.”
“I think you have me confused with your other cousin,” Narcissa insisted. “Bella is the master of mind games.”
“Wouldn’t shock me,” Sirius spat. “She’s always been a bit twisted and mental.”
“Harsh,” his cousin whispered. “Did our mudblood-loving Mr. Potter convince you of that?”
Sirius thought for a moment about her reference to James. He instantly realized that it had not been James who had sent the note; it had been Narcissa.
“Now, we can do this the easy way or the hard way,” Narcissa informed him. “You can come willingly, or I can bring you by force. What shall it be?”
“Where are we going?” Sirius asked cheekily.
“To the Dark Lord,” Narcissa informed him. “For some odd reason, he wants you to join him.”
“Probably wants to add one more to his Black collection,” Sirius mumbled, rolling his eyes. “Your dear master has always been a bit insane, if you ask me.”
“Don’t talk about the Dark Lord that way,” Narcissa shrieked, sending a hex over at him. Sirius dodged it, smirking.
“Well, let me set the record straight,” Sirius said daringly. “I will never join him. Never.”
“As if you have much choice in the matter,” Narcissa proclaimed. “You should have gone with the easy way.”
She raised both wands, her mouth opening to recite an incantation, when she fell over onto the tiled floor. Sydney turned the corner and flashed her infamous smile. Her bright blue eyes were shining in triumph.
“Syd!” Sirius said, running up to her and kissing her. “That was brilliant!”
“I try,” Sydney said jokingly. “I knew that this must have been a set up. James is down by the lake right now.”
Sirius and Sydney stood in silence for a moment before Sirius looked up at her in panic.
“If they wanted me to join the dark side, there is a very high possibility that they wanted Prongs as well,” he informed her, his voice shaky. “We need to get down there.”
She nodded and he grabbed her hand. The two of them set off down the stairs and towards the grounds.
“That’s right, mudblood,” Malfoy whispered into her ear. “That’s James Potter for you.”
Lily looked over at the man that had previously hidden behind the mask. James Potter looked up at her, his hazel eyes apologetic and worry lined across his face. His unmanageable black hair was now more obvious than ever. She wondered how she hadn’t noticed it before.
She felt the color draining from her face and her heart surged with anger. Her emerald eyes were filling with tears of both disappointment and hatred. After all those tutoring sessions, he hadn’t once told her. Not once. He had used her to fulfill some sick fantasy that he had desired since fifth year. Inside, she was struggling, but as Malfoy held onto her, she acknowledged that she had stopped putting up a fight. She was too much in shock.
“Let go of her,” James screamed, as Malfoy tightened the hold on Lily’s neck. “Stop it. You’ll kill her. Stop!”
“And if I do what’s in it for me?” Malfoy demanded. “What’s in it for me?”
“I’ll do whatever you want,” he pleaded. “I’ll give you whatever you want. Just don’t hurt her. Don’t hurt Lily. Take me instead. Hurt me.”
“Pathetic,” Snape muttered. “Absolutely pathetic.”
Snape revealed a mask of his own from within his cloak. A white skeletal face adorned the front and hid the fact that a Hogwarts student was concealed beneath it. Malfoy took one of his own from his pocket, one of his arms clinging onto Lily, the other placing the mask on his face.
“Join us, Potter,” Malfoy sneered. “Join us and your precious mudblood shall be spared.”
Lily looked to the ground, knowing full well what James would choose. The entire Potter line was known for their nobility and stance against Voldemort. There was no way James would agree to this, no matter how strong his infatuation with her was. She was preparing herself to die.
“Fine,” James answered softly. “Just let her go.”
She looked up at him, small tears releasing themselves from her eyes. She couldn’t believe what she had just heard. James Potter, joining the dark side? She felt Malfoy’s hand release itself from around her neck. She fell to the ground roughly, scraping her arm on a thistle. The blood flowed freely. She ignored the small juts of pain seeping through her.
“No, James,” she whimpered from the ground as Malfoy and Snape grabbed onto his arms. “Don’t.”
He looked over at her, the same hazel eyes she had been dreaming about for months, and she knew that he cared for her. No matter how much deceit and confusion he had caused, he genuinely cared for her. Even though she still felt a rush of anger soaring through her veins, she couldn’t let them hurt him. She couldn’t.
“Stop!” she screamed, trying to get up. She quickly fell as she tried, her emotions taking their toll on her. “James, don’t join him!”
The three of them were already at the castle doors when she gave up hope. She slammed her fist against the ground and cried. She hadn’t cried in years, but these tears wouldn’t cease. She let them all out, the anger, the hurt, the love, the devotion. Everything came spilling out all at once and she didn’t know if she even wanted it to stop.
He needs my help, she reminded herself. He needs me. He just gave himself over to Voldemort for me and all I can do is sit here and cry. I damn well need to get up and help him.
With much determination, she pulled herself together and stumbled towards the doors. She cried out in relief as she saw Sydney and Sirius, their wands with them and panic accompanying them.
“Sydney! Sirius! They took James,” she cried out. “They took him!”
“Lily, calm down,” Sirius coaxed quietly. “Where did they take him?”
“The Slytherin Common Room,” she told them. “I’m sure of it. That’s the only place they could meet with Voldemort. Voldemort wants James!”
Sirius nodded and headed back into the castle, Sydney and Lily following him. Lily figured Sirius already knew the route to the Slytherin Common Room, but instead of going there, they were walking back towards the Gryffindor Common Room.
“Sirius,” Lily said quietly. “Why are we here?”
They had reached the Fat Lady and Sirius had entered the portrait hole.
“We need to save James,” she whimpered, her head in Sydney’s shoulder. Sydney tried soothing her.
“Accio cloak,” Sirius recited. A cloak made of sleek silvery material flew from the upstairs dorm.
“Is that an Invisibility cloak?” Lily asked.
Sirius nodded. He threw it to Sydney. “The two of you need to wear it when we go in.”
“What about you?” Sydney questioned suspiciously. “Please tell me you’re not going to do what I think you’re going to do.”
“I’m going to hand myself over to him,” Sirius informed them, leading the way. Lily and Sydney slipped under the cloak.
Once they reached the entrance to the Common Room, Sirius saw Narcissa waiting for him, her arms folded across her chest and a grin on her face.
“I knew you’d show up,” she said. “Nice trick your friend Davis pulled back there. Luckily Avery saw me and revived me. Good to know you’ve finally come to your senses.”
“If I may confess, I’ve secretly been considering it for a long time,” he told her, the smoothest tone in his voice. He sounded utterly convincing. “I’ve always assumed that my loyalties belonged to Hogwarts and Dumbledore, but after talking with Regulus, I’m convinced.”
“You talked to your brother?” Narcissa asked.
“Just this afternoon,” Sirius lied. “The reason I turned you down tonight was because I was confused.”
“Well, at least you know now where your loyalties lie,” Narcissa said, whispering the password to the Common Room. The door opened. “Follow me.”
Narcissa entered quickly, but Sirius stalled by pretending to sneeze, thus allowing Sydney and Lily to enter efficiently.
He looked around the cold, dark room and saw Malfoy punching James across the face.
“Just a bit of payback, if you know what I mean, Potter,” Malfoy said coldly. “Now then, our master should be with us at any moment.”
Frank Longbottom and Dorcas Meadows were also seated, angry expressions on their faces.
“Our master should be here at any moment,” Snape announced to the room, his mask still firmly on his face.
Sirius reluctantly sat down on the couch next to James, whose nose was now bleeding. Sirius felt Lily and Sydney pass by him and stand behind them. He heard someone whisper, “Incendio” and James’ ropes were burnt from his hands. He kept them there just in case and felt a wand slip into his hand.
The fire flickered for a moment and everyone turned to look at it. James and Sirius took their chance.
“Stupefy!” they bellowed, a red flash of light filling the room. The five Slytherins who had been standing by the fire had all been stunned. Sirius turned to release Frank and Dorcas when he heard a voice.
“Well, well, well,” a voice from the fire said. “If it isn’t Black and Potter?”
Lord Voldemort had made his appearance from within the fire just in time.
A/N: And Secret Lily pulls another cliff hanger out of her brain just in time! There will be ONE more chapter to this story. Just one. To clear something up, Voldemort’s head is in the fire (like Sirius’ was in GOF). He is not actually there in person. The next chapter will have a bit more of Lily’s reaction in it. I hope I did ok. I guess it could be worst. So please, leave me a review and tell me what you think.
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