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23 July 2008 @ 03:44 pm
Price of Victory: November 22nd, 1981  
Sorry for the delay, things have been getting cuh-razy! Anyway, onto the goods. It's sort of a short, choppy chapter. Next chapter will definitely deliver something. Can't say what, though ;)

November 22nd, 1981

November 22nd, 1981, approximately 7:00 PM, Regulus writes a letter

Regulus stared at the blank piece of parchment, as if he expected the letter to write itself, and finally sighed, dipping his quill into a small vat of black ink.

‘Barty, (he thought putting ‘Dear’ would sound girly)
How are you? I hope you’re staying out of trouble. It’s relatively quiet here, and since I can’t leave the house, there’s not a whole lot to do, other than talk to my brother, which isn’t really much fun at all.
Write back soon,
Regulus A. Black’

After letting it dry for a few minutes, he furled up the letter and sealed it carefully, then tying it to the waiting leg of the large barn owl sitting on his desk. The owl flew off when he was sure the letter was secure, and Regulus shut the window behind it, looking around to see that someone had slid him in a tray of sandwiches.

He smiled and picked the tray up off the floor, setting it on the desk and taking a seat.

November 22nd, 1981, approximately 7:40 PM, Barty returns to the scene of the crime

When he walked into the Hog’s Head, he didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. There was a rather burly brunette talking to the barman, but that was typical, and Barty didn’t think much of it. The man was holding a copy of the Daily Prophet and pointing at something on the front page.

Barty didn’t notice the white haired barman give a subtle nod in his direction, nor did he notice the burly man look at him. He finally took notice when two men, considerably larger than he, sat down on either side of him.

He ordered a drink but before the barman could fetch it, the two men grabbed him by the upper arm and bodily pulled him out of the bar. Barty wasn’t particularly big or tall, and the two men dwarfed him totally.

“You’re a bit younger than I thought you’d be,” someone said from behind where he was struggling to free himself.

“Who are you?” he asked, wishing desperately he could reach his wand.

The man finally came into view. It wasn’t a Death Eater or even anyone that Barty couldn’t have taken care of in a duel.

Jeremy Brown.

“So we finally meet,” he said, coming face-to-face with Barty. “I do hope you had fun fucking my wife,” he added, smirking a little.

“Not as much fun as she did,” Barty said cheekily.

The older man punched him in the jaw.

Barty had absolutely no concept of Muggle dueling, the only thing he really knew was that his attacker would have never had a chance in a fair fight with him. He had to give the man credit for being smart enough to know that Barty would win if he had access to his wand.

A boot embedded itself in his ribs and Barty crumpled, held up only by the grip on his arms. He gasped for breath.

“Well at least you enlisted good help,” he muttered. “You know I’d have no problem beating you if I had my wand.”

“Yeah, yeah, I’m sure you Death Eater bastards have a few nasty tricks up your sleeves. It’s just a necessary precaution.”

Barty rolled his eyes. “And you Mudblood swine beat up teenagers, at least I have an honor-code,” he countered sharply. Another fist collided with his face and he felt his nose break.

Ironically, Barty was terrible with healing spells.

“You do realize I’m a masochist right,” Barty said conversationally. “I love pain,” he added tauntingly.

He would swear on his mother’s grave that he felt two of his ribs break with the next kick.

November 22nd, approximately 8:20 PM, Severus Snape visits Godric’s Hollow

It felt childish, it felt absolutely ridiculous. He was sitting in front of the freshly dug earth, staring at the marble. Trying to think of something to say.

“I…” he said, his voice cracking slightly. What was he doing, talking to a corpse? “I’m sorry.” He let out a sigh of relief. “This is all my fault, Lily.”

No answer, of course.

“I should’ve listened to you when we were fifteen,” he added. “I was stupid.”

The wind rustled a few branches behind him, and he shivered. Severus held back tears valiantly, biting down on his lower lip. “I should’ve- I don’t know- told you about Pettigrew before you trusted him with something like that. I shouldn’t have told Voldemort about the prophecy. This is all my fault,” he said, tears finally breaking through.

He stood up, wiping his eyes, and sighed deeply, but he didn’t walk away for several moments.

“Severus?” someone said quietly behind him.

He jolted, turning around quickly. “Oh…Frank, Alice,” he said tersely.

“What are you doing here?” the brown-haired man, Frank Longbottom, asked quietly.

“Just…paying my respects,” he muttered.

“We finally got away from Neville long enough to do the same, at least since the funeral,” Alice said, smiling weakly at Severus.

He hadn’t even gone to the funeral. He didn’t think he’d be welcome.

“It’s hard,” she said to him quietly, her blue eyes piercing him. “But the world can be a better place now,” she continued. “We just have to try really hard to make it that way.”

Severus nodded miserably and turned to leave.

“Our losses may have been huge,” Frank said, just loud enough so that Severus could hear it over the wind. “But it made the victory correspondingly huger.”

Severus pushed the kissing gate open and walked out of the cemetery.

November 22nd, 1981, approximately 9:00 PM, Sirius makes an invitation

Remus groaned as he stood up.

“You alright, Moony?” Sirius asked from the kitchen table, where he was composing a letter.

“My back hurts,” Remus replied, walking over to his friend. “From the couch. But it’s nothing serious.”

“You could just transfigure it bigger,” Sirius said.

“It still wouldn’t be comfortable,” Remus joked, hovering over Sirius’s shoulder. “Who’re you writing?”

“Marlene, the next Order meeting is in a few days, and I was hoping we could make arrangements to bring Harry with us,” he said, scratching his chin with the tip of his quill. “I don’t want to shove him off on the Weasley’s or Andromeda for a two hour meeting.”

He nodded in agreement. “And I doubt Regulus would want to watch him.”

“Exactly,” Sirius said, running a hand through his dark hair. “I’m sure all the girls will be fawning over him. Didn’t Alice and Frank bring Neville once or twice?”

“I think once, but they let Augusta baby-sit mostly.”

Sirius repressed a shudder of fear at the name ‘Augusta’. Augusta was Frank’s mom, and quite feisty for a woman in her sixties. Back when he and the others had been at Hogwarts with Frank, Augusta had beaten Sirius over the head with her handbag for asking her to let him borrow her favorite vulture stuffed hat. Augusta Longbottom was renowned for being tough, which (Sirius believed) was highly indicated by her choice of friends; Augusta happened to be very close with Minerva McGonagall, whom she had gone to school with.

Professor McGonagall had similarly threatened to hex Sirius on several occasions, though the threat was good enough to silence Sirius and James.

“We should probably tell Regulus, yeah?” Sirius said finally.

Remus nodded. “Tomorrow over breakfast.” He then straightened and stretched his back again. “This going to be a rough next month,” he muttered.

“Hey Remus…” Sirius started, a little awkwardly.


“Well, since your back is hurting so bad and…well, I was thinking, my bed’s big enough for both of us…”

Raising an eyebrow, Remus studied his friend carefully. “Really?”

“Yeah. We could…I don’t know, just share it until Regulus leaves,” he said.

Pondering this very carefully, Remus sat down on the sofa. Sirius had been one of his best friend’s for close to a decade, what harm could it do? If there was actually enough room, it wouldn’t be uncomfortable for either of them. “Sure. It’s only a month, right?” He laughed slightly, and Sirius’s posture relaxed.

“Right, just a month. It’ll be over before you know it.”
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Leeny: Alwaysk_leeny on July 23rd, 2008 08:47 pm (UTC)
Marlene? Marlene's alive? Sweet! But what about Frank and Alice? How AU is their bit going to be? Can't wait to find out.

I am slightly disturbed by how adorable I find your Barty.
Miss Nina Cat: Hogwarts-Class of 96msninacat on July 24th, 2008 10:27 am (UTC)
If this helps I was screaming, "MORE!!", at the end of the chapter. I really love all your characterizations. Even Barty!
Spinnersniper_tez on July 28th, 2008 06:31 pm (UTC)
awwww! needed to know what happens next! I love your Barty, he makes me wanna hug him and never let go.

i cant wait to see Padfoot and Moony togather in a bed, without being 'togather'. oh yeah and i cant wait to see what happens to Regulus.

thanks much