S&B 1

"What are you doing here?"

Sirius' brooding look over his cousin did not surprise her for one second. He held the door close, concealing the view of his room as if from the eyes of the hallway.

"Believe me, beloved cousin, if this was my idea I would much have rather thrown myself off a cliff." She responded with the same distaste, "my father said your mother sent for me."

"How very kind of her to think I need a chaperone. I don't need your company, thank you very much." He motioned to close the door, but Bellatrix was quick to put her foot in between.

"I think she sent me to make sure you didn't make any stopovers." Bellatrix said and force pushed open his door. Sirius stumbled back releasing his grip, allowing her to step inside his room freely. Bellatrix looked around with hidden intrigue. She has never been inside his room in all the years they've known each other, as they have never been very close.

"Listen, I don't have all day and I'd like to get this over with so if you'll hurry, then the faster I'll be out of your way. And you out of our lives." Bellatrix said tepidly and crossed her arms over her chest. Sirius brushed passed her with an intentional shoulder shove and picked up a trunk at the foot of his bed. Bellatrix observed him silently. With a wave of his wand, Sirius' most prized belongings arranged themselves inside the trunk. Sirius surveyed the room once more, breathing in what he imagined would be the last time he'd be seeing it.

"Come on, then. I don't have all day." Bellatrix broke the silence with the tone he most disliked. She swished her dark hair from her face with a lazy hand and pursed her lips. Ignoring her, Sirius tapped on the top of his trunk with his hand and began towards the door, the trunk floated in midair trailing behind him.

"I can't imagine you having anything in value." Bellatrix sniggered from behind him.

"I can't imagine you understand what value is seeing as you don't regard anything or anyone with any." Sirius retorted with a proud smile to himself. Bellatrix rolled her eyes.

They stepped out the front door of #12 Grimmauld Place into the chilly afternoon air of London. Bellatrix could not conceal the look of disgust on her face as muggles passed. Sirius had always found her hostility towards muggles amusing so he greeted them as they turned to look at the two strange people in even stranger attire.

"Good day, ma'am." Sirius said loudly with a slight nod. The woman in passing smiled back at the handsome mysterious man in black, blushing as she left. Bellatrix grabbed Sirius' wrist looking as though suppressing herself from vomiting.

"Merlins, woman, they're still people." Sirius said under his breath as they both watched the woman walk away. Bellatrix had her other hand gripping her wand inside the pocket of her skirt.

"Muggles. They're muggles." Bellatrix muttered before stepping ahead of him. "Quickly, Sirius."

Sirius was holding on to the handle of his trunk this time dragging it by hand in the sight of muggles around them. They reached the last house and turned to a corner that led to a dead end.

"Why are we going this way? Do you even know—"

"I have orders. I intend to follow them. So should you if you wish to be rid of me sooner." Bellatrix led the way into the dead end and looked to the ground to a number of discarded household items and a large dumpster at the corner. She beckoned for Sirius to come closer, he followed. "There."

Sirius found the item she was pointing at—a rusted metal bell that looked like it once used to be on a child's bicycle. Together they bent down and Bellatrix gave him a signaling look as she whispered, "One, two three."

The world became one fluid, spinning motion for the two Black cousins. Sirius' other hand, still gripping onto his trunk, let go at the same time as they hit the ground hard on their feet.

Bellatrix's arms swayed as she steadied herself on both feet. Sirius straightened his thick cloak and shook his head to replace his already messy hair. "Where are we?" He asked while dusting himself.

"I don't know." Bellatrix said with wonder as she surveyed their surroundings. They were just at the foot of a clear hill, vast with green grass all around them. On the top of the hill, in the distance, stood a lone house black to behold and dated in design. Smoke issued from its skinny chimney on the roof.

"This is stupid. They're kicking me out to make me live in the unknown." Sirius muttered as they both stared at the house. Bellatrix rolled her eyes and started off ahead again.

"Just be glad it's not off with your head." She somewhat shouted over her shoulder.

"She's blown me off the tapestry. I think that means the same thing, don't you?"

They struggled walking uphill and approached the house in heavy breaths. Bellatrix reached the front door first and swallowed to compose herself from all the walking. She turned to find her cousin closing in with the usual serious look on his face except for his eyes slightly squinting to the rays of the sun. His curly black hair framing the side of his face made him look even more curious. Bellatrix wondered what normally went on in that strange head of his. Why had he always been different? He didn't look any different as the other men of the great, noble house of Black. In fact, he was one of the best looking ones. His sorting into the Gryffindor house was the great game changer. She will never forget the day Bellatrix's aunt, Sirius' mother, burst into her home wailing about the disgrace and the disappointment. Sirius has always been a great disappointment then, and even though Bellatrix never got to know him, she had always thought of him that way—a great disappointment. Today, as she had to permanently wipe him off from their family line, she wondered if he would have been different had he been given a chance.

Sirius' grey eyes just caught the meaningful look on her face before Bellatrix turned away, clearing her throat. She quickly opened the front door and stepped inside. Sirius followed suit, and the trunk hit the wooden ground with a thud.

"This is where they want me to stay?" Sirius ogled the tiny home, but with eyes of wonder. It was a lot more than what he had expected of his mother. It had just about everything he needed to survive. Even Bellatrix thought it was too generous. The furnishings and the decors screamed Black family, but Bellatrix noticed there were no pictures of the family, not one. The walls were adorned with gold and silverware, and at the corner before a spiral staircase stood a glass cabinet with all sorts of trinkets. Sirius wandered the house like a child in a sweet shop, his footsteps creaking up and down, this way and that. Bellatrix fixed herself on the glass cabinet, noticing the tiny ornate ornaments that she thought her aunt loved and noticed something peculiar. Something she has only ever really seen through drawings of books.

A clock-like pendant with a sand timer in its center attached to a long chain stood on the bottom of the glass cabinet. Bellatrix unconsciously opened the cabinet and took the pendant in her hand to study it closely.

"What are you doing?" She jumped to Sirius' sudden voice just behind her. He was now looking at the pendant with the same curiosity as his cousin. "Is that—?"

"A time-turner." Bellatrix finished in above a whisper running her thumb over the sand timer. "Why would your mother put this in here?"

"It's probably a fake. A duplicate." Sirius said swiping it from her hand.

"Hey! You might break it!"

"Break it?" Sirius chuckled, "It's a fake. Look. The sand doesn't move. My mother's always been that…cruel." He groaned and shoved it back into Bellatrix's hand. With a thoughtful moment, Bellatrix pocketed the Time Turner and closed the glass cabinet.

"That settles it then, doesn't it?" Sirius said with a sigh, slapping his arms to his side with an awkward look at her. Bellatrix's hand was still in her pocket when she turned around to face him.

"Yes, very well. I suppose this is goodbye."

"Bye." Sirius said with a lift of his brows and managed a smile. He watched his cousin for a long moment while she looked around the small living room. Her great black bunch of hair fell below her shoulders like a lion's mane. For that moment he thought she looked rather pretty, and then bit his tongue at the very idea of it.

At what seemed like a lifetime for two very awkward cousins, Bellatrix slowly made her way to the front door, opened it and stepped out without saying goodbye as she closed the door.

Sirius remained where he was, unable to place a strange thought at the back of his mind, and suddenly turned to look at the glass cabinet his cousin had been poking around earlier. His eyes scanned the trinkets in its enclosure and stopped at the bottom shelf to a peculiar corner that could not have been empty earlier.