A/N: Don't own a thing, especially not HP. Italics denote thoughts. Bold is for spells.
1998 DMLE Impound Office
Jack Dougan was a recent hire to the Auror Corps. His first assignment, to go through the belongings of the unclaimed dead from the Battle of Hogwarts. Most of it had been simple enough, a few knuts in the pockets of a dead student, a joke wand someone had slipped a Death Eater, he'd even found three different love poems to Harry Potter.
It had frankly been boring so far. Then he came to the bits and pieces that had been found with the big name Death Eaters. Currently, he was looking at the belongings of one Bellatrix Lestrange. Right, Bellatrix Lestrange, cause of death: curse damage...belongings, one wand-snapped, one coin purse containing fifteen galleons, and...
He looked at the item, it was a Muggle photograph. This was possibly the least likely thing Jack thought he would find today. The photo, obviously well loved and looked at often was of two children, one a young boy with light colored hair, his arm around a smiling girl with dark, curly hair. The boys face, Jack noted, had nearly been worn away by someone touching it often. Flipping it over, in faded green ink, were the letters JP/BB and the number 1960. Where the devil did this come from? Why would Bellatrix Lestrange have a muggle photo on her? Jack wondered idly as he cataloged the photo and then tossed it into the bin with her other items.
1960 Richmond Park, London
Bellatrix Black was watching the deer. She loved the graceful creatures. Her sisters and parents were somewhere in the distance. This was her moment of quiet, a very important thing for the girl of nine years. Her youngest sister, Narcissa had been in a foul mood of late, nothing it had seemed could calm the girl. Andromeda, the middle sister had done her best to make the little girl happy, but something had upset her and it seemed to Bellatrix that it would be ages until she'd forgotten it. Thus, Cygnus, their father had decreed this a day out for the family, in the hopes that something would distract her from her tantrum. Thus far it had been unsuccessful, and so Bellatrix had gotten away.
Then she saw him.
A short stocky muggle boy with sandy hair, he was holding a tin pail full of carrots as a taller, slender muggle woman carried a small white object. Curiosity overtook her caution and she got closer. Close enough that he noticed her.
"Hello!" He called to her, waving.
Bellatrix didn't speak. Every instinct inside her shouted to get away. Muggles were dangerous, she knew that. The boy grew closer, "Are you watching the deer? I brought them some carrots from our garden, would you like to feed them with me?" Stormy blue...Bellatrix found herself thinking as she looked into his eyes.
"I...I shouldn't." She backed away, then stopped as she felt something warm and soft touch her arm. Spinning, she found one of the tame deer standing behind her.
"Go ahead..." The muggle said to her, offering her a carrot. Numbly, Bellatrix took it and held it out with trembling fingers. The deer leaned forward, taking a bite from the carrot. Its chocolate eyes seeming to lock onto her purple ones, even though its eyes faced outwards slightly.
There was a flash behind her, "Perfect shot!" She heard the muggle woman say happily. The carrot was finished swiftly, and the deer snuffled her hand in demand of more treats. He handed her another carrot and this time her hand didn't shake.
When the carrots were gone, the deer began to disperse, seemingly knowing that their free snacks were finished. "My name is Jeffrey." The muggle said to her, "What's your name?"
"B-Bellatrix." She replied, "I need to go..." With that, she rushed from the clearing and back to her family on the magical side of the park.
"Where have you been?" Druella Black demanded of her eldest child, "You did not come when summoned." She flicked her wand at the girl and Bellatrix winced as a stinging hex struck her leg. "When we return tomorrow you will come when called, do you understand?"
"Yes, mother," Bellatrix replied.
The Next Day
Bellatrix was back in the same clearing. Just like the day before, the mu- Jeffrey and the muggle woman that was most likely his mother arrived. He waved to her again, "Hello Bellatrix, want to feed the deer with me?" He called, smiling as the deer, hearing the word feed began to close the distance.
Bellatrix again was unsure, but she reached out for a carrot. The tips of his fingers touched hers and without realizing it, she blushed slightly. As they fed the deer together, the mu- Jeffrey talked more at her than to her, since she was still uncomfortable.
His mother, Lisa, was a freelance photographer. She sold her pictures to magazines all over Europe. He was going to a private academy in Chelsea and wanted to be something called a doctor which as he explained it was the muggle equivalent of a healer.
Little by little she began to talk. Lessons ingrained in her from her family taught her how to not bring up magic. In case you get lost in Muggle London somehow...Cygnus, her father, had said as he taught her and Andromeda.
When he told her that he was leaving to visit his grandparents in Kent the next day, she was inexplicably saddened by the news. Seeing the strange dark-haired girl features subtly fall, Lisa had an idea. "Jeff put your arm around Bellatrix." She said, smiling at the stunned look on the little girls face. Drawing her instant camera from her bag, she snapped a quick picture of the two.
Once it had developed, she handed it to Bellatrix, "Here you are dear. Something to remember the summer..." She smiled warmly to her, a smile Bellatrix hesitantly returned.
Lisa took a pen from her bag and handed it to the girl, "Now just put Jeffrey Perkins and your name on the back, and whenever you want to remember the day, you'll have it." Quickly Bellatrix scrawled JP/BB and then the year 1960.
1964 Just Outside the Leaky Cauldron
Bellatrix was excited, the thirteen-year-old had been given the chance to explore Diagon Alley on her own. Technically she was shopping with Andromeda while their parents were busy at Gringotts setting up Narcissa's trust vault. Andromeda had talked leaving the Alley so that she could say hello to Ted, a Hufflepuff and her sisters not-so-secret crush.
Then she saw him.
"Jeffrey?" Bellatrix said, almost unsure, even though she'd looked at that picture of them every day at least once.
"Bellatrix, right?" He replied then grinned cheekily, "Of course it's Bellatrix, no one else quite has your fashion sense..." At the reddening of her cheeks, Jeffrey's grin grew wider. "How are you?" He asked.
"I..I am well, my sister and I are shopping for our school things, but she wanted to meet a friend." Bellatrix replied, "How has your summer been?"
"Can't complain, well I can complain, my mouth works just fine, but I don't have any complaints to make." He replied, earning a small smile from her, "How's yours?"
"Dreadful. My youngest sister is still feeling poorly but they don't know why. So we've been seeing specialists." She wasn't sure why she was telling him this. No one outside of the Black family and the very few healers the family trusted, knew about her sister's condition.
That was when he hugged her, seeing the look on her face, all he could think to do was hug her. She froze, everything in her mind telling her to draw her wand and curse him for daring to touch her.
And then she began to hug back.
"Bella, who's this?" Came a voice behind them, causing her to jump back from the hug. Turning she saw her sister Andromeda with the blonde Hufflepuff she'd been waiting on.
"Jeff Perkins, how are you?" Jeffrey said, offering his hand to them to shake. Introductions were made and Bellatrix was glad that Ted Tonks was muggleborn. He was able to keep the conversation from going anywhere near magical subjects, something Andromeda and Bellatrix weren't good at. They didn't go too far, only walking the block or so around the Leaky Cauldron.
However, soon it was time to go back to the Alley. Bellatrix, seemingly only now aware that she'd been holding his hand, looked at Jeffrey, please call me Jeff, and sighed, "This was wonderful Jeff, thank you." She surprised herself as she leaned up and pecked him on the cheek.
The stunned look on his face was worth it.
However, the interrogation when their parents found them wasn't. She'd been seen by the Selwyns on their way into the pub, they had seen the kiss, but luckily for Andromeda, they didn't see Ted. Cygnus was upset that she'd been outside of the area she'd promised to remain in. Druella, however, was furious that she'd been seen kissing a muggle.
That night, after Cygnus had finished chastising her and had left to see to a business deal, Druella punished her daughter. Not with a stinging hex as was usual, no, this time it was the cruciatus that was inflicted on the girl.
Afterward, Bellatrix was allowed to drag herself upstairs. In her bed, trying to control her tears she glared at the picture once she had dug it from under her pillow. She wanted to burn it. But she couldn't.
As she slept that night her mother's voice rang in her ears, He is filth! Muggles steal magic! How do you think mudbloods are spawned! You have brought shame to our family! Her last thought was that she hated him now. Her pain was his fault, Stupid Muggle...I...I'll kill him one day...
1971 Undisclosed Location, Death Eater Training Site
This is it... Bellatrix thought as she put on her mask. Her marriage to Rodolphus was less than a day old. She'd been brought to this place to take her Mark, to become a Death Eater like her husband and help cleanse their world of filth and traitors.
The door opened and upon seeing who had entered Bellatrix bowed lowly. Voldemort walked inside, flanked by Rodolphus and Lucius Malfoy, her soon-to-be brother in law. "Bellatrix, are you ready?" Her Master questioned, "I have a special treat for your initiation."
"Yes my Lord," She replied, not looking up from the floor, "I am ready."
"Excellent, come with me..." She rose and followed behind him. The Ritual Chamber was a small, dank room there were two stone pillars and lashed to them were two muggles. Bellatrix felt her heart clench as she saw them.
"These two were caught in the forest near the Malfoy Manor. Barty has already had his fun with the old woman, but the young man if for you. Kill him in my name. Lucius, come along, I have something for you as a reward for bringing these to me." Voldemort led them out of the room. Strange... Bellatrix thought, normally the Dark Lord likes to watch...
Still, she was grateful for the solitude. She went over and checked on the older woman first. As promised she was dead, and as Bellatrix cast a quick diagnostic charm, she saw that the death had been neither swift nor gentle.
Turning back to the young man she felt that clench again. She couldn't help it, she reached up and stroked his cheek. That caused him to flinch, "P-please..." He said quietly, his eyes seeming to go through her mask and lock onto hers.
At that moment, Bellatrix wanted nothing more than to run away. But she couldn't. They wouldn't make it out alive, and even if they did, she would be killed upon breaking the Oath she'd taken.
He was trapped. She was trapped.
She lifted her mask just enough that she could expose her lips. She kissed him, tasting her tears mingling with his own. Her tears were of bitter regret, his were of pain, fear, and sorrow. His mother had been murdered in front of him. And with a whispered Avada Kedavra, he was taken from the world. In some part of her mind, she wondered if he had still wanted to be a doctor. She heard footsteps and lowered her mask. She took the memory of that kiss and locked it in the same place in her mind she kept her memories of meeting him.
"Good. The disgusting thing is dead. Hold out your arm and take my Mark." Voldemort said to her. Her arm came up trembling and she felt the pain of the spell that branded her forevermore as one of his servants.
She was thankful for the mask, no one could see her tears.
1995 Azkaban Prison
Bellatrix stepped over the rubble of the cell. She looked down and saw the Auror laying still, her soul taken by the Dementors. She took the wand from her slack hands and flicked it at the trunk against the wall opening it and then tossing the wand away.
Inside she found her own wand and her most secret treasure. The well-worn photograph. It had never been the Longbottoms, the McKinnons, or any of the other families that the Dementors had shown her. It had always been him.
She looked down at the smiling children and then quickly shoved the into her prison robes.
She'd killed Ted Tonks happily. It had after all been his fault. If he had been seen by the Selwyns then Andromeda would have also been punished and then she wouldn't have had to kill her niece as well.
Her niece, infuriatingly brave, had chosen to fight against the rightful order of things. Her sister had thrown away her family for a mudblood. The Black family, once the cornerstone of pure-blood society was lost except for a very, very few.
She looked down at the dying woman, "This is how all traitors end up." She said, remembering the words of Druella Black.
She turned away in time to see the youngest Weasley and the love of the boy-who-lived. A cruel giggle came from her mouth, and she sent a curse flying towards the girl.
"Not my daughter, you bitch!" Came a cry from Molly Weasley who turned her wand on Bellatrix and began casting.
Bellatrix danced away from each spell, twisting and sending her own curses into the exchange. Stupid blood traitor filth! She heard her mothers voice crying for blood and Bellatrix was going to be an obedient daughter, Just like always...
But it hadn't been always. Not by a long shot. She'd been a rebel at one point, she'd even kissed a muggle. Twice. She corrected, she'd kissed the same muggle twice. In a way, she was glad he was dead. She rather doubted he would like this Bellatrix.
For a second, she wondered if she liked this Bellatrix?
That moment was all it took. A spell from Molly Weasley took the life of Bellatrix and with it, the boogey-woman of every magical child was gone from the world.
1998 DMLE Impound Office
Jack Dougan finished his shift with no more answers than he'd started about the strange picture he'd found. Surely Bellatrix Lestrange didn't associate with muggles? He thought and then tossed the picture back into its box a final time. He sealed it and placed it with the others to be left to molder in peace. Eventually, the photo would fade away, removing the only trace of the life Bellatrix could have had, the life taken from her by an abusive parent who had driven her eldest daughter to madness.