Chapter 7 : Truth or Death?
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The train was going super fast right now. Or at least it seemed like it was going faster than normal. I don't know how the bloody hell I'm going to face any of them. Old Al was the only one who liked me, I guess. Maybe I could go live in his old house, cause there's no way, swearing on the Black family tree, that he left anything to anyone else, right? Or maybe people don't like me as much as I think. Nah, not possible. I know who hates me and who doesn't. And the majority of the 'doesn't' adores me.
"We're arriving, Mr.Black." I lifted my head from the side of the window, and walked out to join Dumbly in the corridor. Why does he even have to be here?
"Yeah, yeah I know. I can smell them from here." Dumbledore smiled and I knew I was helping the situation.
"Let's keep this joking manner toned down, shall we? I'm always one for a laugh, but, alas, not all can keep a light heart. This is serious business."
"Yeah, I know professor. Very Sirius business. Get it?"
"I do, Sirius. I get it." I let out a heavy breath at the small frown on Dumbledore's face, growing as we stepped up to number 11 and 13 Grimmauld Place. Here we go.
I rapped the gate in front of the non-existent house with my wand, as the house would only open to a Black. I flicked my hair out of my eyes with my other hand. My fucking hair really needed to be chopped off. It's annoying but it does annoy my mother more, so it stays. If only Doe liked it, too. The rumbling of the house pulled me back into my harsh reality. I don't really know anyone who has it worse than me, if you really think about it. I mean, sure Dorcas has no parents, but at least she has Harley. And James is a right saint in his house. I guess Remus could give me a run for my money, which isn't in an endless supply like people think. Pete, well Pete's a mystery, even to us. I mean seriously, we've never even stayed over his house. Which I guess makes sense. His mum's a clean freak.
"Albus." My father's voice crackled like the gravel on which we still stood. Dumbledore pulled a smile over his face as best he could.
"Orion. Pleasure, as always. I'll come in now? Yes, very good. Come then, Sirius." I looked up at my father for the first time since the summer, and I saw exactly what he wanted me to. Punches. Kicks. Curses. I felt him fishing in my head as soon as he first spoke to Dumbledore. Damn Legilimens. We walked through the dark hallway, and I almost gagged from the stench of dead houself. You would think they could fix that with a spell or something.
We met in the living room, my hatred spiking when I saw all my family members dressed in black, somber and silently smirking. This was their fake sad. I knew it inside and out. They hated Al, and I wouldn't be surprised if his death wasn't a heart attack, whatever that is.
"Let's get this over with," grumbled Bellatrix, and I turned a bit in my chair to glare at her.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Read the will, old coot," she practically yelled while looking a crazy as she ever did. I looked at Dumbledore in shock.
"What will? Is that why you're here?"
"Yes, and I think Bellatrix is correct. We should get this done and get yourself and Regulus back to school." Bells tried not to look surprised, but I saw her sneer raise for a minute in shock that someone actually listened to her.
"The Last Will and Testament of Alphard Pollux Black. I, Alphard Pollux Black, am a resident of 83 Feunsi Place, London, England. I am of sound and disposing mind and memory, and over the age of seventeen years old.
I hereby declare that this is my last will and testament, and that I hereby revoke, cancel, and annul all wills and codicils previously made by me either jointly or severally. I declare that I am of legal age to create this will and that this last will and testament expresses my wishes without undue influence or duress.
I have no immediate family to speak of. All of my possessions, fortunes and other values are to go directly to my nephew, Sirius Orion Black, son of Walburga Irma Black, and Orion Pollux Black. My Gringotts vault key has been given to Head Goblin, Griphook Alphentamine III, and will only be released and surrendered to Sirius Orion Black and/or Dorcas Hera Meadowes."
I looked up, and heard a screech coming once more from the corner of Bellatrix, her eyes shining in wrath. Narcissa flinched, and that in itself made me flinch as well. Narcissa never flinches.
"What the bloody hell?"
"Language, Bella," my mother said, as calmly as she could as her rings twisted menacingly between her fingers.
She turned to my mother. "Well. I tried to tell you. The only thing that would be in there was a bunch of rubbish. Nothing of importance, only the words of a BLOOD-TRAITOR!"
"Calm, Bellatrix. Aunt Walburga will deal with this." She stood and walked over to the two of us, Dumbledore spoke first.
"I think myself and Sirius would benefit from leaving. Regulus, would you care to travel back with us?" Dumbledore's extended hand was firm, but his eyes were wary of the surroundings. He could pretend all he wanted, but he knew where he was. The place I run away from every break we've ever had.
I watched Regulus' eyes dart back from mother to the extended hand, scared of what either choice would bring. My heart lifted when he stood from his chair, but mother squashed them fast enough.
"No! He'll be traveling back at a later date. Somewhere around November."
"I'm sure he would benefit from coming back earlier, but if you insi-"
"I do. Let's go Regulus. You must prepare yourself for dinner." She clutched his arm, the black nails digging in deeper as the pair got farther up the stairs. My father stepped forward, almost a warm look in his eyes as he passed over a slightly trembling Andromeda.
"You'd better head off now, Sirius. We'll expect you for Christmas. Do not disappoint this time." I straightened my dress robes, the collar beginning to itch.
"Sir," I responded. The only words of understanding I could really muster. Dumbledore grabbed my collar roughly, and lead me out of the house quickly. Leaving, I turned back and spotted all the lingering glares, of Orion, Bellatrix, Narcissa, Cygnus, Dorea, and even weak old Pollux. The whole little cult was there. Too high up in their class even for Voldemort.
Pacing the sixth year boy's dormitory was not how I wanted to spend that Friday evening. I really can't get past Friday's with a peaceful night, can I?
"So, do any of you know what really happened? Huh? Cause, apparently Alphard might have been murdered!"
"Look, Dorcas, we know no more than you," Remus said, trying to calm me down.
"Well I feel like bloody shit, because I haven't exactly been on the best terms with Pads, if you haven't noticed."
"Oh, we've noticed." I swung around to face James.
"What is that supposed to mean, Prongs?" People need to be more direct with me, because honestly I have no perception.
"All I'm saying is you've kind of been giving him the cold shoulder since the full- moon. And I'm not saying that's your fault, but..." So basically he was saying it was my fault.
"He hasn't been exactly keen on me either! So what is that? And why wasn't I informed about Emmeline?"
"Sirius doesn't exactly like to publicize his downfalls, you already know that, Doe," said Remus, who was sounded extremely bored.
"Yeah, well I'm not exactly the public. Or am I now?" James breathed heavily before his response.
"Obviously not, Doe. You've got to get a grip! We are letting you know everything Sirius has told us, which could end in either a broken rib or nose for any one of us. Well, any one of us except for you Dorcas. No matter what has happened, Sirius would never intentionally hurt you, so get a bloody grip! Merlin, I don't get you chicks." I threw a pillow at him, happy we were done with this subject, at least until Sirius got back.
"Never the matter what you think. There's a study that shows girls are superior to boys, simply because they don't find the need to show off every chance they get." I smirked, because that one was directly aimed at Prongs.
"Where the bloody hell did you read that?" I picked some feathers from the pillow that James had so kindly, and ever so gently, (sarcasm) returned to me.
"I don't know, some muggle magazine."
"You know, every time we ask where you heard something, you say it was muggle. I happen to live in a muggle neighborhood, and have never heard of any of these so called studies," Remus interjected. Damn smart marauder.
"Well, fuck you very much. Nobody needs your opinion."
"But Dorcas, oh Dorcas, wherever would you four be without my guidance?" Remus asked smugly.
"Hospital wing, probably dead," James and I answered simultaneously. We've answered that question many times before, but for some reason, this time the word dead stuck in my throat a bit longer.
"Alright boys, what are we up to?" They all looked around at each other, and the shrugged, murmured, and various scenarios of that.
"What, we need Sirius to do everything?" The murmurs were back. "Where has your spirit ran off to! Well, maybe Moony's has gone off to get laid, Potter, yours has gone to find some Firewhiskey, cause Merlin knows how long it's been since we've had a good old party, and Peter's, well, his is probably sleeping. Along with him." We looked to the far right corner, and realized that Peter has set a new personal record for fastest amount of time in which he can fall asleep. This one was what, two minutes?
"Well then let's do something! All you've got are jokes, Doe. Let's hear some ideas."
"You know, I do all the work around here. So no. One of you figure it out while I go fetch the Firewhiskey from the kitchens." I sprang up from my seat, dusted the sad remains of the pillows off my lap, and slammed the door cheerfully on my way out.
Coming back up from the Hufflepuff corridor, I was getting a tad tired from carying this stupid box. Stupid little shit I am, I forgot to take my wand with me. Which wouldn't have been much help anyway probably. I can't really sustain too much magic. Around the top of the fifth floor, however, my heart sped up a little bit. This is where Nick slept. This is where he was probably sitting on his messy but neat bed, chewing on the end of that ridiculous Everlasting Quill I'd gotten him. His hair was probably all messed up, and I could just imagine running my fingers through it, one more time.
But no. This is probably what was really happening. He was probably making out with Vanessa, or Samantha, or Rachel, or some other girl who was prettier, and way more stable than me. The quill I bought him was probably already another gift, and his bed was messy, because he just took advantage of another girl who thought he was sweet and smart and cute and nice with his thin glasses that he whipped off his face when he wanted to rub his eyes out of exhaustion or boredom.
My vision of Nick changed once again when I reached the sixth floor, and came upon Nick knocking profusely on the poor Fat Lady, when she refused to let him in without a password.
"Ah! There's the young lady who told me never to let you in," exclaimed the Fat Lady, pointing in my general direction. I turned slightly red at the fact that I even put the tiniest amount of effort towards Nick.
"Thank Merlin. Dorcas, will you let me in?" I shifted the crate of bottles to my other arm, and squinted my eyes suspiciously at him.
"Look, I got an owl with a note to come to the Gryffindor tower at ten-thirty PM for a great time. And no, it's not like that. Look at the stamp." He handed me the letter, and I saw the Marauders' insignia at the bottom. A lion, surrounded by five names, Moony, Wormtail, Vixen, Padfoot, and Prongs. I smiled, realizing what was going to happen.
"Facilitasilinct." The Fat Lady looked at me sternly, and opened her portrait, slowly and reluctantly. The smell of Veritaserum hung slyly in the air, only those who were used to it would be able to recognize it. James and Remus, who looked very suspicious, Lily, who was pulling her hair in anticipation, Alice, who looked moderately intrigued, Frank, with the same face as Alice, Marlene and Hestia, who looked excited at the prospect of a game, Emmeline, a look of distaste crossing her face as she saw me, Mary McDonald, who looked like one that would get along just great with Hestia, and, finally, myself and Nick joined the group. So eleven teenagers altogether. Two seventh years, nine sixth years. Eight Gryffindors, three Ravenclaws. This was going to be some great kind of something, safety not guaranteed. That was my favorite kind of fun.
James started off by putting all of the Truth questions on one side of the large circle we formed, and the Dare questions on the other. We all smiled, smirked, frowned, or, in Lily's case, chewed on hair at each other as James started off.
"Lily, truth or dare?" She took the worried look off her face and looked James directly in the eye.
"Truth." James cast Accio non-verbally in the direction of the truth pile, and one paper flew to Lily. Her eyes widened for a second, before she smiled slightly, then giggled a bit.
"Who is the most attractive person in the room to you, physically." she read aloud. Lily slapped down the card on her thigh and rolled her eyes. "Well, these get right down to it, don't they?"
"Who do you think wrote them," I answered, nodding towards the two sixth year Gryffindor boys.
"Okay, well James." Her hand popped over her mouth. Someone just figured out about the Veritaserum. "That's not what I meant! Oh bloody hell! Where did you lot get Veritaserum?"
"Sirius," the three of us answered, James in a bit of a trance, unable to take his eyes off Lily.
"Next," I said, wanting to get past this before James jumped Lily right there in front of everyone. Lily turned to Mary and said,
"Mary, truth or dare?"
"Dare," she said. That was a little surprising.
"You must kiss whoever is to your right." She turned towards Remus, blushed to her dirty blond roots, and kissed him softly. Then she stayed there. Then her hands came to his face, and his to her waist. They moved closer, inch by inch, and I could see her blush growing. Then she moaned very softly, but we heard it anyway, and she pulled away, now very embarrassed.
"Alright, Remus. Truth or dare?"
"Dare." It was a thing of ours. Marauders always had to choose dare first, no matter what. The paper flew over to him, and he opened it.
"Waltz with whomever is sitting directly opposite you for a full minute. Gender is not a factor." Eyeing me suspiciously, he got up and took Marlene's hand. He knew I wrote that one, and I knew he hated dancing of any kind. He placed his hand on her waist, the other supporting her arm. I waved my now retrieved wand and lilting music played throughout the common room. Remus was getting an awful lot of action so far, and all I got was a small, but shooting pain up my wand arm.
They finished, sitting down in their designated seats, continuing the game.
"Truth or dare, Marlene?"
"Truth, please." Gods, she was polite.
"Who do you hate?"
"Professor McGonagall." Her eyes widened, but everyone laughed. Intentional or not, that was a good one.
"Alright, alright, your turn, Dorcas. Truth or dare?"
"Say five things aloud you love most about the person sitting on your left." I looked over at Weids, who glanced back, and then turned his head towards the middle.
"Fine, I have no choice, do I? One, his intelligence, two, his wit, three, his playfulness, four, his hair, five, the way he held my hand." Everyone sat there silently, as if something was going to blow up.
"Well, what? What the hell did you expect me to say? The way he fills me up with his monster di-"
"Dorcas!" I whipped to my left and glared at him.
"Or the way he treats me like a child?" They all looked mildly annoyed, so I gave up.
"I'll get on with it, then. Weids, truth or dare."
"Dare." He smirked at me, and I just sat back into the side of the couch.
"Strip down to your undergarments. Then go ask the Fat Lady if she's seen Peeves carrying a set of pants and a shirt anywhere.
Fine. I have no objections. Close your eyes if this is too risque for some of you," he said, turning to me to see my reaction. Which was just plain angry. Most fiddled with their fingers, but Alice had her face fully covered.
"Go ahead Nick. We haven't got all night," I retaliated. He lifted the sweater vest over his head, then began unbuttoning his shirt. All while I watched him, refusing to take my eyes off of his own.
"Can we hurry this up! It's not a strip show," screamed an exasperated Lily, to whom we all shushed. She hasn't yet understood the dangers of waking up the Heads of Houses after curfew. Nick gave up on his buttons and pulled that shirt over his head as well. That's when I realized his gaze had shifted from mine to Emmeline's, something I had not anticipated. Little slut, from my best friend to my ex in less than a month. He finally moved to his belt, and I just couldn't take watching this little strip tease for Emmeline anymore. So I charmed the damn pants off him.
Looking a little put out, both him and Vance mind you, he walked out to speak to the portrait. We sat there in a small silence before he came running back in, looking a little more freaked than he had walking out, which was a fair bit of freak.
"Fuck!" We all started laughing and cackling, Lily snorting, Alice and Frank holding hands, and I realized that this was exactly what I had needed.
"It's not funny! That Slytherin Head Girl came by, and, I think she was salivating! Damn Bulstrode."
"Just get your clothes back on little stripper."
"Alright, then. Frank, truth or dare." Alice whispered into his ear.
"Dare." My neck protruded forward awkwardly in surprise. Dangerous players we were dealing with.
"Tell James why he is the best person in the world?"
"Damn it," James swore. It was clear that was meant for Lily, but the card was given and had to be fulfilled. Frank scratched the back of his head.
"Well you're a fair Quidditch player, and I think you'll be getting captain right? Then, I guess you're pretty smart, funny, and goodlooking?" He said the last part as fast as humanly possible.
"Thanks Frank! You're not so bad yourself. Let's say you and I give it whirl in the closet, eh?" Of course James Potter would be the one to make a boy blush.
"I'm set for the night, thanks for offering? James truth or dare?" Poor old Frank, tortured by sixth years.
"Dare." He smiled proudly, ready for anything.
"Take a brown haired girl into the closet for seven minutes. No less no more." His face fell as he read.
"I was sure this said red hair!"
"Oh shut up Potter," exclaimed Lily, who was still embarrassed from her confession.
"Alright, I guess that'll have to be Emmeline, Hestia, or Alice?" Frank held Alice closer to him and James was turned back to Hestia.
"Come on then, Hestia," James said, trying and failing to hide his reluctance. Hestia smiled as genuinely as she could, but it was clear James wanted Lily.
The odd couple, walked to the broom cupboard next to the portrait hole, hand in hand. Hestia giggling and waving to Marlene, James sighing in defeat, another chance with Lily squandered.
"Let's keep it going then. "Emmeline, truth or dare?"
"Who do you have the closest physical relationship as of right now?"
"Nick Weids. Easy." He grabbed her sides, and she laughed heartily. He placed a small kiss on the side of her neck and she laughed quieter, as if it was private. He used to kiss me there. I scratched my neck, cleared my throat, and asked her to continue with the questions.
"Alice, truth or dare?"
"Who was your first love?"
"Frank Longbottom," she said, proudly, but I could see from his face that this wasn't a confession he already knew about. He grabbed her face, and she looked innocently into his eyes.
"I love you Alice. You're my favorite person in the world. Now and forever." Hearing these words, Nick and I both almost snapped our necks turning to look at each other.
We were laying on his bed, and I was as happy as I could ever be. Nick was the most perfect person I've ever met. He was so smart and handsome and funny and just all around extremely perfect. I turned on my side to face him, and saw him chewing happily on his new quill. He loved to work. Pure Ravenclaw. My thoughts were interrupted when I was flipped onto my back.
"Whatcha thinking about Doe?" Nick asked, hovering over me on one hand and brushing my hair out of my eyes with the other.
"I know." He gave me a huge, cocky smile and I pushed back his shoulder, and he pretended fall on me, scaring me for a second.
"Stop! I hate you!"
"I know. I love you, Nick."
"And I love you Dorcas. You're my favorite person, in the entire world!" he declared dramatically. I laughed at his dramatics, and his smile softened.
"Now and forever," he said, lowering his lips to mine.
When I came out of my small trance, I had apparently missed Hestia's turn, which ended up being a kiss between her and Emmeline, which all the boys hooted and hollered at. Disgusting.
"Okay, I guess Dorcas can go again. Truth or dare?"
"What's your biggest secret?" I felt like I was going to throw up.
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