“I’m not even gone for twelve hours and this house has already gone to hell!” I said venting to Lily and Marlene, in the kitchen after the meeting. Everyone else had cleared out and Regulus had decided to go talk to Sirius in private. As soon as I asked the question and I saw the guilt in Sirius’ eyes I knew it was true. Merlin, it’s not like he was one to sleep around, but with my sister? That’s just bloody disgusting. They were practically related now anyways.
“Maybe all of their arguments were from sexual tension.” Marlene said wisely. It made sense in a disturbing kind of way, I guess.
“Oh no I think they were both in a bit of a rough way last night. Did you see how disgusted Sirius looked with himself?” Lily asked. “I think I can speak for everyone when I say that I have never seen Sirius Black ashamed of his actions before.”
“Gideon looked mighty angry and to get into a fight about it when he’s off shagging that scarlet woman.” Marlene said in a scandalized tone. I had an unpleasant feeling in the pit of my stomach when I thought about Sirius and Ann. It was just, gross. They weren’t right for each other.
“Scarlet woman is the best you can come up with, really Marlene?” A voice called from the door. Dorcas was standing there and she looked awful. Her hair was hanging limply by her face and her eyes had large bags underneath them. Looks like someone else had a rough night as well.
“I call it like I see them, Dorcas.” Marlene said holding her head high. That girl had never been one to hold back her opinion. All Dorcas did was roll her eyes in response.
“Whatever. Is Gideon around I need to talk to him?” She asked sounding bored.
“I think he received a wakeup call this morning that made him realize it was time to throw the trash out.” Marlene said nastily and gave her pointed look.
“I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before Benjy does the same.” Dorcas said giving Marlene a pitying face. Oh Godric this was going to turn ugly if someone didn’t stop this soon. Marlene jumped up out of her seat and pulled her wand.
“I can assure you that won’t be happening any time soon.” Benjy said walking into the kitchen and putting his arm on Marlene’s wand hand. She slowly lowered it, but her eyes never left Dorcas.
“Isn’t that sweet?” Dorcas said with another roll off her blue eyes, like she couldn’t care less. “Well, I’m off see you all later. Bye Benjy.” She said giving him a quick wink. If looks could kill, Dorcas would have been tortured and murdered ten times over from the look she received from Marlene. When we finally heard the door snap shut I let out a sigh of relief. I was feeling more relieved by the second that Regulus and I now had our own flat. It gave me a chance to escape the madness that seemed to consume this place.
“That girl is a right pain in my arse.” Marlene said, tossing her blonde hair over her shoulders and Benjy laughed.
“She’s changed. You all remember her from Hogwarts. Was the life of the party that one and got on well with everyone. It’s the war.” He said his dark eyes clouded over for a second before shaking his head as though to clear his thoughts.
“We’re all affected by this war and you don’t see us acting like that.” Lily said and she had a point.
“Everyone handles things differently.” I said quietly, because it was true. Each person was different and sometimes you just can’t control the way things end up altering your life. This war was here, and although we didn’t like it, it was a fact.
“Oh by the way Katherine, James was looking for you outside. He says he needs to talk to you about something.” Benjy said avoiding looking at Lily. It must have to do with the engagement. Lily looked at me curiously and I simply shrugged my shoulders.
“Alright, I’ll go find him now.” I told them. It didn’t take long to discover where he was. Only one person yells that loud about Quidditch. He, Regulus, Russell, and Sirius were all outside talking amongst themselves and each having a go on Reg’s broom.
“Back in my days at Hogwarts…” I heard James saying and I rolled my eyes. He made it sound like he was some balding forty year old relieving his glory days.
“James you’ve only been out of school for three months.” Sirius said rolling his eyes and punching his mate lightly in the shoulder. Those two had a bond that was so rare and at time a bit hard to comprehend. James laughed along with Sirius, at his own nonsense. They really were like brothers. Regulus noticed my arrival and gave me a wide smile.
“Alright there Black?” I asked and he shook his head laughing a bit. He seemed so carefree.
“Better now that you’re here, Black.” He added giving me a quick wink. Russell looked a bit nauseated at the mushiness of it all, but we were newlyweds after all. Get over it.
“Just the girl I was looking for.” James said taking my gaze away from Reg to him. He looked nervous and that only confirmed my suspicion that this had something to do with the wedding bells that were soon to be ringing for him and a certain redhead.
“I need you to distract Lily today. I’m setting things up back at the flat and she can’t be there.” He whispered frantically glancing quickly at the house.
“How do you expect me to do that?” I asked, giving him a questioning look. What was I supposed to do have a girl’s day with her? I’d much rather be back at my flat with Regulus consummating our marriage some more. Merlin, we’ve just started having sex and I was thinking about him even more than usual.
“Take her to Diagon Alley and go shopping or something.” James said shrugging his shoulders. That was easy for him to say. All he had to do was wave his wand and his ‘setting up’ would be over within two minutes tops.
“She can’t go to Diagon Alley by herself.” Sirius said and I shot him a glare.
“I wouldn’t be by myself you dolt. Besides I’m not talking to you and your whoreish mouth until I hear from my sister what happened.” I snapped and his eyes went wide. At first he looked hurt, but then I saw him fighting back a smile.
“Whoreish mouth?” Russell asked in surprise.
“You’re beyond brilliant.” Regulus whispered and wrapped an arm around my waist. He always loved it when I insulted his brother.
“Yes, Sirius acted very slag like last night, but let’s not keep that from helping me.” James said pleadingly. The boy was desperate.
“Well, I suppose we could all go to Diagon Alley.” I told them and Russell nodded his head eagerly. He had never been there before. “But, you have to go under the disguise of polyjuice.” I finished sternly.
“Despite Sirius being a tart…” Regulus began and was abruptly cut off.
“First I’m a slut, then I’m a slag, and no I’m a tart. Please, tell me which one it is. Or need I remind you that it takes two to have sex.” Sirius said his eyes flashing.
“You’re all three.” Regulus said causing me to smirk. James even looked like he was fighting back a smile. “Now as I was saying. I don’t know if it’s a good idea to go to Diagon Alley.” He finished, looking at me warily. He was probably expecting me to argue with him, he knew me so well.
“Oh please, it’s Diagon Alley. The Death Eaters aren’t dumb enough to attack their just yet. They’d risk being captured by the ministry easily.” I said pointedly.
“She’s right.” James said.
“Please, Reg I really want to go and Regulus has never been there. You can take him to the Quidditch shop.” I said giving him a wink. Russell’s eyes went wide with excitement. Now that he had that idea in his head he wouldn’t let Regulus rest in peace.
“We have to go! Come on Regulus you always said one day we could go there! ” Russell said grinning widely. Regulus narrowed his eyes at me, knowing exactly what I was up too.
“Yeah, please Regulus.” Sirius said mocking all of us. Regulus looked like he was thinking things over carefully and I bit my lip looking at him hopefully. His shoulders slumped, biting my lip was his weakness and he could never say no to me when I did it.
“Fine, but I would say it’s best if we left your sister here to her own devices.” Regulus said and I nodded my head excitedly. James let out a whoop of excitement and I rolled my eyes.
“You’re seriously my favorite person. I am forever in your debt and I have an idea how I can make it up to you.” James said grinning widely. I can only imagine what that was going to be.
“Please enlighten me, Potter.” I said crossing my arms over my chest. Sirius snorted and Regulus looked uncertain about whether he wanted to know or not.
“I hereby grant you permission to name your first born after me, therefore making your child awesome as well!” James said. You know I never thought anything else in this world could surprise me. I reevaluate that belief every time I hear James Potter talk. Regulus’ mouth was hanging open.
“You know as kind of you as that is I don’t want my kid to have such high expectations to live up too.” I said in mock seriousness. James was just too gullible sometimes, because he looked like he was eating it up.
“You’re right I hadn’t thought about that.” James said scratching his chin thoughtfully. Regulus was looking at him in a state of wonder. I told you that all of the physical impact against his head had done some serious damage. Good thing that it wasn’t possible to pass that on to your children, because I don’t think even Lily’s brains could make up for all of the common sense their child would be lacking.
“It’s moments like these that make me question why you’re my best mate.” Sirius said shaking his head.
“Not only can you not keep your privates to yourself, you also can’t keep your comments to yourself.” I snapped. Everyone, with the exception of Sirius, burst out in laughter. Sure, today had a few minor bumps, but all in all it had been a fantastic day so far. It was my first day of being married after all and I would say it was pretty spectacular. Regulus seemed to be having the same feelings, because his eyes met mine and grin graced his thin lips. It was moments like these that gave me hope.
“Why is it that I always end up having to impersonate someone with bright red hair.” Russell grumbled as we walked down one of the side streets in Diagon Alley. Lily shot him a nasty look.
“What exactly is wrong with red hair?” She asked with her eye brow raised. My brother’s face turned red with embarrassment and I snorted. Sometimes he could really put his foot in his mouth.
“Just, because you’re use to attracting everyone within a ten mile radius with your hair, Ginger, doesn’t mean I am.” Russell shot back.
“Besides red doesn’t go well with my personality.” He said to everyone’s amazement. Lily’s mouth was hanging open and people were beginning to stare as we had all stopped in the middle of traffic. It was a Sunday afternoon and despite the war the streets were pretty packed.
“What does suit your hair color brown? You sure do have a shitty personality.” Lily said with a nasty grin. Russell rolled his eyes.
“Good one Ginger.” He shot back in a voice that said he could care less. I had no idea what had gotten into him. Usually he and Lily got on pretty well.
“Russell Cameron McEwen.” I scolded him. His face flushed at the use of his middle name.
“How about I show you where that Quidditch shop is?” Regulus suggested intervening quickly. My brother nodded his head enthusiastically at the suggestion.
“Let’s go then.” Russell said impatiently. Regulus turned to look at me.
“Do you three want to join us?” He asked and I shook my head no immediately as did Lily. I think the both of us had enough Quidditch talk to last us about for eternity.
“I can stick with them if you want to go and show him the store.” Sirius said looking at his brother. Regulus looked hesitant at first and glanced at me quickly.
“Actually, he can stick with you. I need to go to the apothecary.” Lily said and gesturing, with a nod of her, across the street.
“Will you be okay by yourself, Evans?” Sirius asked and Lily simply rolled her eyes.
“Despite, what James seems to think I’m more than capable of going out on my own.” She said.
“Alright, well I really want to stop in at Flourish and Blotts and look at their new books. Can you meet us there when you’re done?” I asked her and she nodded her head before giving us a final wave and walking off towards the apothecary, with her long red hair flowing out behind her.
“I guess we’ll meet you there when we’re done as well.” Regulus said before kissing my cheek lightly. “Be careful and stick with Sirius.” He said in stern voice. I wanted to roll my eyes, but refrained from doing so and simply nodded my head.
“Well, should we be off?” Sirius asked awkwardly and I answered by starting to walk without him. I heard him let out a small sigh, but he still followed me. The bookstore was pretty crowded for such a beautiful Sunday afternoon, but I wasn’t complaining. I hadn’t been here in forever.
“You can’t ignore me forever.” Sirius said trailing behind me as I weaved through the aisles of books. I headed straight to the back, where all of the romance books where. Usually those weren’t what I would go for, but screw it I was feeling pretty damn romantic, seeing as how I just married the love of my life.
“I can’t believe you would take advantage of my sister like that.” I snapped shelving the book I had picked up to examine. He narrowed his eyes in my direction.
“I didn’t take advantage of her. We had an understanding about what happened.” Sirius said through gritted teeth. You know I wasn’t quite sure about why anyone would leave us alone after all of our bickering today.
“Do I even want to know?” I asked a bit reluctantly. Knowing how much Ann and Sirius despised each other made me really think hard about wanting to know the details of their so called ‘understanding.’
“You know what Black; I would have to say it’s none of your business.” Sirius said giving me his signature smirk. It looked more strained than usual, but still it was there. They were both adults, and as much as I hated to admit it, Sirius was right. It really didn’t concern me, and plus the fact that he called me Black made my heart swell with happiness.
“I guess you’re right, Black.” I said shaking my head, but giving him a small smile. His expression softened, but he quickly rolled his eyes.
“You know you honestly don’t make a very good Black.” Sirius said looking at me carefully. What the hell is that supposed to mean?
“Calm down, I didn’t mean it like that.” He said as I opened my mouth to let him have it. “I meant you are able to own up to your mistakes and realize when you’re wrong. Trust me when I say this isn’t a trait that runs in my family.” Sirius finished. Well, I suppose that was nice? It’s better than him thinking I had similarities with Bellatrix or whoever.
“Thank you, I think.” I said raising my eyebrow slightly. Sirius’ face remained blank and it made me realize that I didn’t think I’d ever be able to really read Sirius Black’s emotions. He left me confused and I think that’s the way he liked it. He held my gaze for a moment longer before clearing his throat.
“I can’t believe you actually read this shit.” He said gesturing towards the books beside me. I opened my mouth to explain when a startling white blonde head walked into my path. Her gaze met mine for a second and her mouth formed a small ‘O.’ she looked the same from the last time I saw her, but it had only really been two months. The only new addition to Narcissa Black’s appearance was a large diamond on her ring finger.
“What are you looking at?” Sirius asked before whipping around. His eyes narrowed as they met his cousins’ cool blue ones.
“What are you doing here?” Sirius snapped and I rolled my eyes.
“It’s Diagon Alley, Sirius. Anyone can come here.” I said cutting in before Narcissa could speak. Her expression was tense as she looked around, seemingly at a loss about what to do.
“Now is not the time for you to argue. You both should really leave this store.” She whispered hoarsely. I shot her a questioning look, but she shook her head and turned to Sirius.
“Look, I know we hate each other, and that’s all fine and dandy, but you…” Narcissa was cut off abruptly, when a tall dark haired woman approached her.
“Did you find the book you were looking for, Cissy? I told your mother we would meet her at Madam Malkin’s to look for wedding dress robes and we shouldn’t keep her waiting.” The women said in a surprisingly husky voice. I glanced at Sirius and saw his skin visibly pale. He appeared to be frozen in position. I had no idea who this woman was, and it appeared that she hadn’t noticed us yet. I gently put my arm on Sirius’ shoulders, indicating we should leave, because if this one of Regulus’ relatives, I really didn’t want the lovely welcoming to the family I was sure I was going to be receiving. He jumped as my hand made contact with him and knocked over a stack of books, just as a man joined Narcissa and the strange women. The man looked at us and my heart stopped, when I met his eyes. They were a shade of grey that I would recognize anywhere.
“Well, if it isn’t my blood traitor of a son.” The man said as the women let out a small shriek. People were beginning to stare at us. Narcissa’s apologetic gaze met mine, but now I was frozen to the spot. The couple must be Regulus and Sirius’ parents.
“Father.” Sirius said in a stiff tone, for some reason I felt ridiculous just standing there and I kneeled to pick up the books that had been knocked over.
“And who is this? Some muggle whore you’ve taken up with?” His mother said, disgust dripping from her voice. After I collected the books I stood up and set them on the table where they were before. I could feel my cheeks burn red as I was scrutinized. Walburga Black, had the look of someone who was quite pretty, but her features had begun to look waxy almost. Her lips settled in a thin line as her eyes fell on my wedding ring.
“Don’t you dare talk to her like that!” Sirius snapped in a menacing tone. I saw the grip tighten on his wand as his parents shot us both glares.
“Auntie let’s just go.” Narcissa said in a hushed tone. I could see Reg’s father still staring at me, but his mother’s eyes never left Sirius’, even when she spoke to Narcissa.
“You’re right. I have no time for this filth. I can’t believe both of my sons turned out to be mistakes.” She said and all of the anxiousness I felt earlier disappeared and was replaced with anger. She made to turn around, but froze in her spot when I spoke.
“What kind of person are you? Your sons are two of the best people I know despite the poor upbringing they received from bigot parents.” I snapped. Sirius put a steadying hand on my shoulder as his mother’s cold eyes landed on me once again.
“Who are you to speak to me like that?” She asked venomously. Orion Black was watching his wife cautiously and Narcissa’s cheeks were tinted red from the attention we were receiving in the crowded book store. I opened my mouth to let her know exactly who I was and what I thought of her, but a deadly low voice broke into the scene.
“She would be my wife.” I felt the familiar warmth of Regulus’ arm wrap protectively around my waist. Walburga’s face turned ashen at the sight of her youngest son. It was the first time she had seen him in almost a year.
“Your what?” She said, the skin on her face paling considerably.
“You heard me mother. This is my wife Katherine Black.” Regulus said his voice raising.
“You let a muggle take the Black name?” She asked in a hoarse voice. Her lip was trembling and if it wasn’t for the fact that she was such a bitch I would feel sorry for her.
“She’s not a muggle and of course she would take my name.” Regulus sneered. I had never seen him this angry before, except at Sirius.
“We’re going now.” Regulus’ dad said speaking for the first time sense Regulus had appeared. He put a strong hand on his wife’s shoulder and physically moved her, as she was frozen in her spot staring between her son and me.
“It was lovely to see you.” Sirius called after their retreating backs. I saw his mother’s shoulders slump and his father’s body twitch for a moment as if he was going to stop. “Feel free to write.” He said sarcastically and crossed his arms over his chest. He shot everyone a nasty glare that was still staring at us. Anyone who met his eyes quickly looked away and carried on with their shopping. One woman even scurried out of the store under his intimidating gaze.
“Are you okay?” Regulus asked putting his hands on my shoulders and examining me at arm’s length. His brow was furrowed and his gaze was intense and scrutinizing. I nodded my head slowly. To be honest I could have gone my whole life without having to encounter them and it would have been perfectly fine with me.
“Having the pleasure of meeting your parents in a crowded book shop the day after I married their son wasn’t exactly what I planned on for today, but everything is fine. Are you okay?” I asked him reading his features carefully. I can’t imagine how he must feel after running into the unfortunate people he had to refer to as his parents.
“As long as you are.” He whispered gave me a quick kiss that made my heart skip a beat, just as Lily joined the party. Russell was speaking with Sirius about what they had missed. My brother was such a gossip.
“Hey, sorry I’m late.” Lily asked smiling brightly while carrying a shopping bag on her arm. One look around at the group and she could immediately tell something was wrong.
“What happened?” She asked carefully. I wasn’t really sure where to begin.
“It’s none of your business.” Russell snapped, fixing Lily with a glare, and walking out of the store. Twice in one day he had yelled at her and Lily looked hurt and confused. I rubbed the temples of my head as Sirius followed Russell out.
“What is his problem?” Lily asked. I shrugged my shoulders and looked to Regulus who had a look of realization on his face as he glanced out through the window to were Russell was, but quickly masked his face into a neutral expression. I was going to have to ask him about that later.
“Today really fucking sucked.” Russell said moodily as he sat down on the couch after are disastrous shopping trip. Lily had just left and was going to arrive home to a full blown proposal and knowing James it was going to be something absolutely incredible.
“Russell, you do not get to cuss!” I snapped, my eyes flashing dangerously. My mum would have smacked him upside the head if she heard him talk like that. Russell’s mouth formed an ‘O’ before looking away and glaring at the fireplace. I wasn’t in the mood to deal with this right now.
“Give him a break Black.” Sirius said smirking slightly and dropped down next to Russell on the couch.
“Shut it I’m still mad at you.” I growled and he rolled his eyes. I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay mad much longer, but I felt the need to channel my anger into something.
“I get that I screwed up and all, but she knew what was she was getting into. She practically threw herself at me.” Sirius shot back and narrowed his eyes at me. I let thoughts of Regulus and last night take over my mind to keep me calm. The way his lips felt against mine and how my skin burned whenever he touched me.
“Where is Ann anyways?” Russell mumbled. That brought me out of my little fantasy of what exactly Regulus and I were going to do when we got home. I was still sore from last night, but the way he made me feel last night and how much closer it brought us together was enough to erase that and have me thinking about making love with him again and again. Practice makes perfect after all.
“I don’t know Regulus went to go and check on her.” Sirius said. The house was eerily quiet and it was surprising not to hear Keltie barking on our arrival. That dog usually flipped out at any noise, even when someone flushed a toilet. He was strange. I heard the stairs creak as someone, probably Regulus, walked down them hurriedly. His face was ashen when he reached us.
“What’s wrong?” I asked quickly.
“Your sister she’s gone. Her room is empty, and Keltie isn’t anywhere to be found.” Regulus said looking panicked. It felt like the floor disappeared out from underneath me, and I let out a gasp of breathe. Just when you think things can’t get worse, they always fucking do.
Author’s Note: I’m really sorry for how long it’s taken for me to update. I’ve had some personal problems and have been distracted for a really long time, but I’m back now and I’m excited to continue with this story. What do you guys think of Ann’s disappearance, and Katherine meeting her in laws?! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE review and let me know your thoughts, concerns, comments, or questions. I love hearing from you guys and it gives me a definite incentive to write and update faster!