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Chapter 1 : Blood Brothers
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In front of him, lay James's lifeless body. His round spectacles were cracked on one lens and they sat lopsided on his face. His hazel eyes that once burned with life were open and empty. Sirius's eyes stung with more tears as he extended his hand out and closed James's eyes. Pulling his arm back, he let it drop to his side as he sat there, shaking and trying to master his own sobs of grief. He clenched his eyes tightly together and tried to remember the James he knew and not the one laying on the floor.
"Hi! I'm James, James Potter. What's your name?" he questioned curiously with a grin, pulling at the edges of his face and extending his hand.
The boy with black hair ginned mischievously and held out his own hand, shaking it with James before replying, "I'm Sirius Black."
Their talk soon turned to houses and what types of classes they would have. Sirius had explained how his family had always been put in Slytherin. James, however, held out hope that the boy would be sorted anywhere but Slytherin. The scarlet steam engine whipped past trees and valleys as it made its approach to Hogwarts.
Sirius was pulled from his short memory when he heard a rustling in the room down the hall. Thinking nothing of it, but pure hatred for Lord Voldemort, he continued to sit there lost in more thoughts from the past.
It was their second year at Hogwarts when they found out that Remus was a werewolf. They were gathered in the Great Hall for breakfast and talking in fast whispers to one another as Peter and Remus made their way to the Gryffindor table. They didn't want to say anything to Peter just yet, as they weren't sure what they would even say to Remus about them knowing. They broke off their conversation when the other two boys sat down across from them.
"What sort of trick or prank are you two plotting this time?" Remus questioned them with one eyebrow raised.
"What? Us? Plan a prank or some sort of trick? Never," Sirius scoffed with a fake innocent voice.
Peter just chuckled as Remus eyed Sirius and James suspiciously.
When breakfast was over, they made their way out of the Great Hall and into the corridors to class. Remus led the way with Peter as James and Sirius held themselves back and continued the whispers that originated that morning at the Gryffindor table.
"James, he HAS to be a werewolf," Sirius said as if he was talking to a five-year-old.
James pulled a face and responded, "Then we should tell him that we know before he finds out that we did and didn't say anything to him about it."
Sirius looked around the corridor and his eyes came to rest on Remus before speaking. "Well, how are we going to go about that? Pull him aside and say 'hey, Remus. We know you turn into a monster once a month. Why didn't you tell us?' He wouldn't go for that. Besides, I want to know where he goes to transform," Sirius finished, giving James a huge grin.
James, who had known Sirius way too well by now, knew what that grin meant. "Well, we can always go ahead and use the cloak during the next full moon and follow him to see where he goes," he suggested.
"Sounds like a plan. When is the next full moon?" Sirius was excited to have something to do and was eager to get things going. However, he was disappointed when he found out that it was more than two weeks away.
Just as he was about to complain to James about the full moon being so far off, they heard a snide voice call out to them. "Well, if it isn't the married couple who bicker over everything."
"Shut it, Snivellus!" Sirius barked.
"Or what Black? What are you going to do?" Severus sneered.
"Or I'll hex you into oblivion," James responded.
Severus rolled his eyes as a teacher approached. The boys split apart and continued making their way down the corridor.
The memory changed, and he was outside of the Whomping Willow with James running past him and into the hole in the ground. He heard James shout, "Damn it, Sirius! What are you playing at?!"
James appeared a couple of moments later with none other than Severus Snape.
"You!" he hissed when he composed himself outside of the willow. He yelled at Sirius and started to walk away. "You almost got us both bloody killed!"
"Now, Prongs!" Sirius tried to reason as he tried to catch James up. "This git wanted to know where Remus always goes, so I said I would show him. He deserves it for sticking his large, hooked nose into everyone else's business."
James rounded on Sirius,"You know exactly what would have happened to him had he gotten through the door. How could you? Don't you ever think about anyone else? I don't like the slime ball either, but now you've betrayed Remus's secret!"
James continued towards the castle with Peter, who had been wandering aimlessly around as the events of Sirius's betrayal and hatred took place before their very eyes. Sirius stood there in shock at what James had said. It sunk in too late for Sirius to prevent it from happening.
Severus walked over to him and started shouting. "You'll be expelled for this!"
Sirius rolled his eyes, "Oh, shut it, you daft twit! If you tell anyone about Remus, so help me, I will hex you until the grease in your hair suffocates you to death!"
Severus scowled and stormed off towards he castle. Sirius made his way towards the lake to think about what he was going to say to Remus tomorrow in the hospital wing.
Sirius was again pulled from his memories. This time, however, he distinctly heard a whimper. 'No one could be alive after this could they?' he asked himself as he made to stand.
Down the hall he could see an open door with a flickering light. Pulling out his wand, he slowly made his way down the hall, avoiding the debris, and into the small bedroom. The ceiling was blown apart. Splinters of wood were abundant in the corner by the window, and belongings were scattered all across the room. In the crib in the corner he heard another whimper and made his way quickly over, stopping abruptly as he saw Lily laying on the floor in front of the crib. Grief shot through him again at the sight of her. A mother just trying to protect her child. Her last act as the devoted mother that she was, to shield Harry's crib from Lord Voldemort. Tears prickled his eyes as a cold, October wind filled the room. He choked back tears as he was once again engulfed by memories of the past.
He was standing at the front of the old stone church next to James. The large, oak and wrought iron doors at the end of the aisle opened to reveal Lily in a beautiful white dress, her vibrant red hair falling down just below her shoulders and covered in a delicate veil. She was on the arm of her father, who Sirius could see had tears in his eyes as they closed the gap between them and James. When they reached the end of the aisle, Lily was nothing but smiles as her father gave James her hand.
Sirius patted James on the shoulder and whispered into his ear, "You sure you want to do this, Prongs?"
Grinning from ear to ear, James glanced at Sirius, "You bet I do Padfoot." The excitement danced in his hazel eyes. The mischievous boy was still there, but now he wasn't a boy. He was a man.
This thought and this one alone pushed another memory to the forefront of Sirius's mind. The day Harry was born. The little bundle of joy with a tuft of jet black hair that was already rivaling that of his fathers, wrapped up in a blanket that Mrs. Potter had made for James when he was a baby.
The first time Sirius held Harry, he felt a love like no other. The bond of Godfather and Godson was so strong. It reminded Sirius of the pact that him and James had made while in school.
"Padfoot!" James called out as he ran down the corridor trying to catch up to his best mate.
Sirius wheeled around and waited for James to get closer, a grin plastered to his face. "Well, did you do it?" he asked James.
"Yeah, it's all set up. Do you think it will work though?" James looked at Sirius with a curious look between trying to catch his breath from running.
Sirius gave James an incredulous look, "Will it work? Of course it will work, Prongs!" Shaking his head like a shaggy dog, "Why wouldn't it work?"
"Well," James started, "because something always seems to go wrong."
"Ending up in detention isn't something I would consider going wrong, Prongs. That would be a victory." Sirius explained to him while chuckling.
James rolled his eyes and grinned. "Well, everything should go as planned then at lunch in about..." He checked his watch, "twenty minutes."
"Brilliant!" Sirius exclaimed while rubbing his hands together. James was grinning beside him as they walked into the Great Hall to get ready for lunch. Having free periods left them enough time for causing as much mischief throughout their seventh year as possible.
James walked past the Slytherin table and gave his wand a flick, then made for the Gryffindor table before anyone else could enter the room. The twinkle in his eye made Sirius give a bark of a laugh that echoed throughout the hall.
"Shhhhh!" James hissed.
As the Great Hall filled with students of all ages and from all houses, James and Sirius anxiously watched the doorway for Severus Snape. Remus sat down across from them as usual with Peter by his side. He couldn't help but notice the looks of forced innocence on James and Sirius's faces.
"What have you done?" Remus looked back and forth between the both of them.
"We didn't do anything, Moony," Sirius replied, "not yet anyways."
James grinned as he lifted his goblet to his mouth, trying with all his might to hide the look he had on his face.
Sirius nudged him and nodded towards the doorway. The two boys craned their necks, watching as Severus made his way over to his usual spot at the Slytherin table. Eagerly watching from the Gryffindor table, James and Sirius watched and waited. As Severus sat down, the bench let out a yell, "You slimy arse! Don't you ever wash your hair?"
There was a roar of laughter throughout the hall. Severus's cheeks were tinged with a pink hue. He simply put his head down and began plating items of food. As he went to lift his fork to take a bite of steak and kidney pie, the fork exploded, sending steak and kidney pie flying all over his neighbors, himself, and the table. When the laughter started to calm down the bench screamed out, "Now you'll have to wash that greasy hair of yours!"
Severus got up and ran from the hall. Sirius and James were snickering as they watched him leave. What they failed to notice was Professor McGonagall approaching them. Remus and Peter tried desperately to stifle their laughing so as not to be included in what was sure to be another detention for the two of them.
"Mr. Potter and Mr. Black! Detention. My classroom tonight at seven thirty! How dare you two disrupt the Great Hall again!" She scolded the pair of them as her lips were so thin they looked like they were on the verge of disappearing all together.
"Yes ma'am," they chorused.
At seven thirty they arrived at Professor McGonagall's office to serve their detention. "You boys will be cleaning the desks in my classroom." She watched them as their faces both slightly smirked before she continued, "without magic."
This whipped the smirks off of their faces.
"You will find the buckets, rags, and scrappers over there." She pointed to a line of desks at the far side of the room.
They walked over, picking up a bucket apiece and began to scrub the desks.
Professor McGonagall called over to them from her desk, "Please don't forget, Mr. Potter and Mr. Black, that the under sides of the desk need to be scrapped clean of gum." Her stern gaze had a sparkle to it now that the boys' faces showed equal disgust.
As James scrapped the under side of the desk, Sirius cleaned the tops.
"Ouch!" James's voice called out after sometime and much swearing at the gum.
"What, Prongs?" Sirius asked, clutching his chest in shock.
James stood up and showed Sirius his hand. Red beads of blood were forming along the line of a cut the scrapper made against the palm of his hand. James looked at his hand curiously, "You know, this reminds me of something Lily told me about muggles."
"Muggles, Prongs?" Sirius replied, looking at him uneasily, but laughing all the same.
James nodded, "Yeah, apparently they have this pact where they cut their hands and shake. Lily said it was called a blood brother pact."
Sirius quirked an eyebrow as he listened to James. "Leave it to you to be able to recite something Lily said and about muggles too."
James only grinned in response to Sirius's statement.
"You know, Prongs," Sirius started, "we could always take that pact. We are like brothers since I left Grimmauld place and have crashing at your parents house."
Without answering, James took the scrapper that had cut his hand and gave it over to Sirius whose face broke out into a huge smile. He took the scrapper in his hand and made a cut right in the same place where James's cut was.
"Now we shake hands," James stated as he extended his hand out to Sirius.
Sirius took his hand and shook James's. "This reminds me of when we met on the Hogwarts Express right before our first year."
James smiled in recollection of the meeting Sirius had mentioned. "Blood brothers?"
The whimper that Sirius had heard before turned into a full fledged cry that broke him out of his current string of memories. It haunted him to think that that is all he will have left of James and Lily are the memories of their past. He shook that thought from his head and looked at Harry crying in the his crib. He reached down and picked up the small tyke who stopped crying immediately. As he moved his hands to adjust the child in his arms, he saw the scar of the cut he made all those years ago, then he looked at Harry. He looked just like James. That is when he realized that with this war going on and Harry still being alive he had something worth living and fighting for.
"Blood is thicker than water," he said aloud to himself smiling as he finished. "I promise you, James," he called throughout the house and clenched his scared hand, "I will do anything and everything to protect Harry."
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