Bella paced the foyer of Grimmauld Place anxiously, waiting for Dumbledore’s hit team to return. The order member Remus was sitting down watching her.
“What?” she snapped.
“Nothing,” he replied calmly.
She sighed. Obviously it wouldn’t matter what Dumbledore said. They still wouldn’t trust her.
“You’ve been watching me for the last 15 minutes,” she said.
“I’m just wondering why you had a sudden change of heart?” he asked, genuinely puzzled.
“Ask Dumbledore,” Bella said.
The room lapsed into silence. The monotony broke though when the door opened and Dumbledore walked in.
“What news? Have they attacked yet?” she exclaimed.
Dumbledore shook his head. “No. But we have other things to worry about. Come with me. We’re going to Hogwarts.”
Remus jumped up. “Is it safe?’
“Safer than here,” Dumbledore said gravely.
Remus nodded. Bella noticed for the first time that he looked horrible. He had only just lost his best friend.
“Go home Remus. Rest. God knows we’ll need you soon enough,” Dumbledore ordered.
Remus shook Dumbledore’s hand and went out the door. Bella listened until she heard a loud crack.
“Come Bellatrix. We must go,” he said. He opened the door and went outside. Bella followed him and he grabbed her arm.
With a loud crack they appeared in front of the gates at Hogwarts. Dumbledore let go of her arm and said, “Follow.”
They walked up the long path to the large door of Hogwarts. Dumbledore waved his hand and the doors flew open.
He kept on walking until he reached a statue near the Great Hall. He tapped it with his wand.
The statue of a man holding a sword jumped down, revealing a hole in the base. He stepped down into it and Bella followed him. With a small pop they appeared in Dumbledore’s office. She noted that there was broken glass on the fllor
“Very nice Dumbledore,” she drawled.
He ignored her until he sat down at his desk. He pointed to a chair and she sat down.
“We must discuss your future, Bellatrix,” he said tiredly.
“What’s there to discuss? Free Narcissa and let me join you,” Bella said as though it was obvious.
“You want to fight him?” he asked.
“Yes. He’ll hunt me down anyway. This is the easiest route to take,” she said swiftly.
Dumbledore nodded sadly. “I will try to clear your name in the Ministry. I should have more influence now. Meanwhile, you must stay in Hogwarts. I will set up quarters for you as soon as I get a chance.”
“Thank you, Dumbledore,” she said.
He waved his hand, dismissing the idea. “It’s nothing Bellatrix. Nothing compared to what you have contributed.”
“I believe I should have an explanation now,” she demanded.
“Of what?” he asked curiously.
“Why I betrayed the only life I’ve ever known!” she said angrily.
“Why did you Bellatrix?” Dumbledore said sagely.
“Because of this,” she snarled pulling out the orb from her pocket.
Dumbledore’s eyes widened and reached for it. “That’s a prophecy. And when you first touched it, what happened?”
Bella gave it to him. “I blacked out and had a dream. You were in it. Sirius and Regulus too…”
“You were dead. I saw… I saw… my death. I saw my death fighting for him. I saw him rejecting me. Mocking me. Taunting me.”
“You saw the future?” Dumbledore asked sharply.
“I think,” she said cautiously.
“You told me I had a choice. I could live the life given to me or I could change. I am still going to die. Just not the same way. And that’s when I knew I had to join you,” she finished.
Dumbledore nodded slowly. “Thank you for this, Bellatrix.”
“That’s all very well Dumbledore, but why? Why? What is the prophecy?”
“This prophecy was cast by Cassandra Trelawney. Would you like to hear it?” he said.
Bella nodded and he wordlessly tapped the orb with his wand. A smoky figure rose out of it and it began to say in an echoing voice:
When the world seems like there is no hope, a woman will step forward and cast hope to the darkest corner of the world. She will yield both the power of light and dark. No spell will be beyond her talents. Unafraid to get what she wants, she is a force to be reckoned with. For she is the Grey Commander.
The figure puttered out and left a gaping silence in the room.
“I’m sure that will be helpful to clearing your name. Bellatrix,” Dumbledore said cheerfully.
Bella just sat there looking shocked. “Me? Hope?”
“Apparently. It’ll take some time, but we’ll fix you up,” he said.
Bella spluttered but said no coherent sentences. All of a sudden, a patronous flew through the window. In a deep calm voice it said, “We’ve got her. We’re at Grimmauld Place.
Dumbledore stood up. “Go Bellatrix. I’ll come to fetch you in a few hours. Be careful. You must apparate to exactly the front stoop of the house.”
Bella nodded and left the office. She went down the escalator thing and walked down on the hallway.
As she turned the corner, she ran into a cloaked figure. “Bellatrix…?”
“Snape,” she said evenly.
“What are you doing here?” he growled, pulling out his wand.
“Cool it Snape,” she snapped, “Put away your wand. I’m here with Dumbledore.”
“With Dumbledore? Why?” he asked.
“Haven’t you heard? Black is dead and the Ministry is aware of Voldemort’s return,” she answered.
“Black… is dead? Who…?” he asked, his eyes unreadable.
“Rodolphus,” she said shortly.
His eyebrows shot up. “Interesting…”
Bella glared at him. “I’ve told Dumbledore.”
“Have you?” he drawled.
“Yes. He maintains your innocence, but I will reserve my judgment,” Bella warned.
She spun around and stalked out of Hogwarts to the gates where she disapparated to Grimmauld Place. She opened the door and was greeted by a wand in the face.