Black as the Blood In our Names
Cassiopeia Black and her maid, Bethany, was walking down Diagon Alley, as they were gathering supplies for Draco. They have already fetched the potions ingredients, a few new star charts, and the new robes and school clothes (along with some casual clothes, even Cassiopeia liked to relax in certain clothes every so often), and of course the strange request of workout clothes. Thank goodness that Beth being a Half-Blood she understood the implications of such clothes for DADA. If it wasn't for Beth, Cassiopeia would have considered herself a hermit that lived under a fancy rock.
Now they just have to meet up with Draco at Flourish and Blotts. On their way, Cassiopeia had noticed some of the older witches and Wizards in Diagon looking her way, giving her curious and cautious glances. She had on a haughty smirk, showing that she wasn't cowed by the strange looks she was given.
"Show them that even though the Black name has been under scrutiny, I still carry family pride." She thought to herself as she waded through the crowd.
Beth was by her side and sighed heavily as she adjusted the bags of the supplies she had in her hands. All casted with a feather-light charm to make it easier on her, but she liked the idea of hauling something around to make sure that it didn't get lost. She didn't trust herself with shrinking charms very much as the last time she did so, she lost a good pair of pants after the charm wore off.
"It seems everyone decided to shop on this day, my lady." She spoke up.
"It would seem so. But we had to get Draco's supplies. After the Breakout from Azkaban we can't be too cautious." Cassiopeia replied back.
"Yes. You would think that more of them would stay at home." Beth lifted her nose up a little in disdain.
"They believe that the ministry is on top of it…not according to my sources." Cassiopeia frowned.
"With the Ministry trying to interfere with Hogwarts, I'm surprised that the Wizengamot is even allowing this." Beth spoke as she avoided being crashed into by a bunch of children.
"That will be their first mistake. The Ministry knows that they cannot interfere with Hogwarts. They could try but it will only end rather badly. Should the Ministry interfere with Hogwarts charter, they would subsequently force Hogwarts itself to find heirs of the founders to take over the school system and rebuild from the ground up. Of course, there were a few times that it almost happened. Luckily the older witches and wizards had more sense than they do now." Cassiopeia spoke.
"What about the board of Governors? Surely they must have said something about Ministry interference?" Beth avoided a couple of children shrieking in joy.
"Nothing that I haven't heard. Dolores Umbridge will be at Hogwarts. According to some…connections…" Cassiopeia smirked "but I highly doubt that the Ministry would get too far to get into Hogwarts."
"How would you know?" Bethany asked curiously.
"When one becomes a recluse for quite a few years, you learn many things in the shadows. In this case, The Ministry's interference will not affect Hogwarts too much as long as they don't do anything that would cause the closure of the School. If Hogwarts closes, Witches and Wizards of Europe would then have to go to either Beubaxtons and Durmstrang." Cassiopeia sighed.
"I can't say for certain what would happen if Hogwarts does close, but I highly doubt that it would close at all." Cassiopeia spoke up.
As they passed a few shops, Cassiopeia's eyes caught a few wanted posters on some windows. Ever since the Breakout in Azkaban a little while ago, She had to strengthen the wards on her home. Bellatrix wasn't the young woman who had the determination be become the most powerful Battle Mage in existence, only for her to fall into the madness when she married LeStrange.
She looked at the poster on the window seeing her niece's crazed look in her eyes and the wild curled hair. Her face thin was gaunt and sunken in, but she was laughing maniacally. She was still beautiful. but the beauty that she once had, twisted into an image of a woman who fell into madness.
The young woman she once knew had disappeared. The grandniece that confided in her that she wanted nothing to do with marriages and the like. Not that she wasn't interested in either sexes, She wanted nothing of such unions. She wanted to travel, take down Corrupt Witches and Wizards, study magics that had been lost in their family for centuries and bring them back into the fold, that woman was gone. In her place, it was a woman hell bent on serving the Dark Lord Voldemort and becoming his right hand woman, so to speak.
Gone was the Witch who wanted to leave Britain behind, to travel the world and learning much more that what she had been taught, and wearing her face was a mad devout woman who believed that this Dark Lord would usher in a new age of PureBloods and the destruction of muggleborns, blood traitors, and being beneath her feet, wherever they may be.
She remembered clear as day when Pollux announced that she was to marry Rodolphus LeStrange…and the downfall that came afterward.
"What?" A young Bellatrix, who had managed to come home after a particularly grueling day at the Auror office, stated bluntly as she slammed her fork to the table.
Cassiopeia turned to her brother Pollux with eyebrows arched. This was new. Yes, Pollux was trying to find some pure blooded males to match his granddaughters with, but this was a bit extreme.
The LeStrange Family may be of the Sacred 28, but they have delved into the Dark Arts a bit deeper than most. Add to the fact that they were a bit mad added to the factor of "What the hell is he thinking?" The Black family may be susceptible to madness eventually, but the LeStrange family had already bypassed that stage long ago...they hid it well, but not well enough for the Black Family to see it.
"I thought we agreed that I shouldn't have to worry about being married until after I reached thirty Grandfather." She sneered.
Bellatrix's hair was up in a high ponytail. Her curled hair was tamed enough to be held back with a silver ribbon. She was just as beautiful as her mother. Her eyes, the Black Trademark of silver, with just a tinge of violet-purple, showed her open distaste of marrying the LeStrange heir. Her blood red lips opened to show white teeth that bared at the thought of being married.
"That may have been the agreement, but things change. I won't be marrying you off as soon as possible, Bella, but I do expect you to marry him in three years." Pollux gave a pointed glare to his eldest granddaughter.
As Head of the Branch of the Black family, While Arcturus was head of the Main, both have to work together to keep the Black name steady and going. But with Pollux having three Granddaughters, his sources were limited. Sirius was showing rebelliousness in the main family, and Regulus was too young to be molded just yet.
Normally, It would have been better if Sirius would marry Bellatrix. Granted, to the outside world, incest marriages were frowned upon. But it was tradition in the Black family, to keep the bloodline pure. But Sirius was still in Hogwarts, and Bellatrix was 7 years Sirius' Senior. The age difference was fair, but given the fact that Sirius hasn't matured just yet, they would have to wait.
But for Bellatrix to marry Rodolphus LeStrange was a bit sketchy. He was at the very least 15 years older than her, add in the fact that he may be the heir to the LeStrange Head of family, He worked at the Ministry as Head of the Spell Crafting Department. To Pollux, the match would seem perfect.
"I'm planning on going to the Head of Office tomorrow to apply to the Battle Mage program, Grandfather. I do NOT have time to be courted and playing wife and head of household." She challenged Pollux.
Cassiopeia smiled at her Grandniece. Bellatrix had always been headstrong and independent. Her ambition to be a Battle Mage, a female one no doubt, had been high on her list since she was a child. Her magic was strong and untamed, her spellwork unmatched. Cassiopeia had no doubt that Bellatrix would make her mark on the world. After she graduated Hogwarts, she quickly applied to the Auror Program and passed with flying colors. She was one of the best Aurors on the field.
Her eyes turned to Andromeda and Narcissa. Andromeda was silent and looking at her grandfather with suspicious eyes, while Narcissa was poking at her food. Andromeda would be graduating Hogwarts soon and Narcissa was in her 5th year, just above Sirius.
"You will not have a choice in this matter, Bellatrix. I have already made arrangements for you to be meeting with Rodolphus every so often. You may apply to the Battle Mage Program, but in the end you will marry him."
Bellatrix stood up and challenged her grandfather. Cassiopeia could see her magic sparking through her hair and her silver-violet eyes glowed.
"I will adhere to this Grandfather, but you will not force me to marry LeStrange. Ever." She spoke before turning on her heel and leaving the room.
Not long after dinner had ended, Andromeda and Narcissa excused themselves. Leaving Cassiopeia and Pollux in the dining room.
"Are you mad?" Cassiopeia gave a sideways glance to her brother.
Madness does run in the family, unfortunately, but this takes the cake. Pollux shook his head, dismissing his sister's accusations.
"No, but this match is better than nothing." Pollux said sternly.
"Rodolphus LeStrange is a better match for her than Sirius. From what I heard from Walburga, she might blast him off of the family tree soon. And I can't let Bellatrix go unmarried for so long." He stated as he wiped his mouth with a napkin.
"But the LeStranges…." She was about to say but was interrupted.
"The LeStranges also has a connection to the Knights of Walpurgis. If we can get a foothold…" He was about to say but Cassiopeia gave a rather large sound of disgust.
"You mean to marry Bellatrix off to a Death Eater?" She sneered.
Oh, she has heard of the Circle of Lord Voldemort and his followers. She had ever heard of the so called disappearances of certain witches and wizards who went against them. Pureblood or not. She had also heard of Walburga praising the fact that someone was finally ridding the 'blight' on Pureblooded wizarding society. Cassiopeia may be a follower of the pureblood ways, but even she understood the uses of Muggleborns. More magic in British Wizarding society, the more mundane jobs that the muggleborns can pick up that the pureblood would stick their noses up. But to try and eradicate purebloods that defy pureblood traditions (such as the Prewitts and various other known pureblood families) granted they may have been known as 'Blood Traitors' but they were purebloods all the same, was not something that Cassiopeia agreed with.
"Better to marry her off to LeStrange than another member of the family." Pollux brought up.
At least he admitted that inter family marriages has been the last straw this last generation. Walburga and Orion was much too close, though Sirius and Regulus came out just fine, first cousin marriages would usually not end so well. And Walburga, in recent years, has started to become much more manic, and that was not a good sign. Orion has managed to keep her in line thus far, but they do not know how long it will last.
"Are you going to truly force her hand?" Cassiopeia asked as she subtly glared at her brother.
She did not want that kind life for any of her nieces. Fortunately, Cygnus Black III (Pollux's late son) has already set up a contract between Narcissa and Lucius Malfoy (Lucius is 5 years older than Narcissa) but it would seem that the two of them have already started to get to know each other quite nicely to say the least, but Andromeda was set up with Gregory Goyle (though Cassiopeia had a sneaking suspicion that Andromeda was planning something to get out of the arrangement, she had a feeling that it would leave it's mark on the Black family quite literally) and even she knew that that match will end in disaster.
But Bellatrix? Bellatrix was a woman who would never be tamed. She was a storm that was always brewing and never stopping. She was a woman who wouldn't bow to anyone lesser than her. She was proud of her heritage and would question things that are not so black and white. Granted when she was younger, she was a right brat, yes, picking on her younger cousins and was a rather tricky child to deal with, but she grew up splendidly and was dangerous. And she was rather protective of her sisters and her cousins she grew older. She was always planning, always watching, and always on her guard. She was proud, she was strong, and she was a Black. If the Black ancestors were around now, they would be proud to see her.
"If it comes down to it, yes. I will force her. I understand the need for her to prove herself in the Auror Field, but she has to settle down eventually." Pollux said sternly.
That effectively ended the conversation.
Two Years Later...
She was in her home when her front door was slammed open and closed. She heard her eldest nieces cry of anger and of something else.
"Auntie! Where are you!?" She could hear something in her voice that cracked.
This concerned Cassiopeia, and she left her little study and came down the stairs and saw Bellatrix with running tears down her face and it smeared her dark makeup and it make her look every bit of a broken spirit. Her hair, rather than the pretty smooth curls, in it's place was a ratted mess, her clothes rumpled and dirty, she smelled of cheap booze and trash. She looked like hell, nothing like the strong girl she had seen growing up.
Cassiopeia, with a motherly instinct that she didn't know she had, went up to her niece and hugged her close. Bellatrix was grasping her as if she was her lifeline. Bellatrix cried into her shoulder. She was shuddering and shaking, from anger and from hurt. She guided Bellatrix to her study, and had her sit down. A house elf popped in with a tray of wine and sandwiches and the left just as quickly.
The two witches sat in silence, with Bellatrix's sniffles breaking it. She could see the tense posture in her shoulders. Though Bellatrix was crying, she was also very angry. Cassiopeia didn't fear the magical outburst that may come along later. She could clean everything up. But she was worried about her niece's sanity if she was keeping it all in.
"They…rejected my application." She gritted out. "Damn Grandfather decided that becoming a Battle mage isn't something an upcoming wife should be."
Cassiopeia then saw why Bellatrix was so angry. She had worked hard to get to the top, only for Pollux to rip her away from reaching her destination.
"That's right…the wedding is coming up isn't it?" Cassiopeia mused carefully.
Yes, the LeStrange-Black Wedding is the talk of the circles. After Andromeda ran off with a muggleborn after she had graduated to avoid marrying Goyle, and had a child nine months later, that was the straw that broke Pollux's back. He demanded Bellatrix to meet with Rodolphus and begin the courting process as soon as possible. LeStrange was too calm about the entire situation, but Bellatrix was furious. Yes, she managed to meet with him but she refused to be on good terms with him. But that didn't explain why Bellatrix looked like a tramp.
"I…I wanted it so badly…to be a Battle Mage. I have the skills, the drive, the passion for it. All gone because my grandfather decided that it isn't fitting for a Black woman of high pedigree to do dirty work." She snarled her violet silver eyes flashing with malice.
Cassiopeia sighed she wished she could do something for Bellatrix, but pride was something that she held onto. She did feel betrayed that Andromeda ran off with a muggleborn, making Bellatrix's disdain for them a little be more akin to dislike for their ignorance of Pureblood traditions. But she pretended that her sister never existed, except when she was in the sanctuary that was Cassiopeia's home.
"I'm sorry that it has come to this Bellatrix. But I cannot help you with this. Even petitioning Arcturus wouldn't do much when it comes to Pollux." She said softly.
"I can't do this! I don't want to be married! I don't see the point in it! I just want to do what I do best! I've worked hard for this and all for nothing!?" She shrieked before picking up the wineglass and throwing it at the bookshelf with all her might, the glass shattering and the wine spilled.
Cassiopeia would have suggested her to leave the country but even then, Pollux would know that she would also be blasted off the Family Tree if she did so. Just like Sirius, just Like Andromeda. And Bellatrix had far too much family pride to leave and she couldn't leave Narcissa alone in the world. So, she did the next best thing that she could offer to Bellatrix.
"You are smart, Bella." She started, getting Bellatrix's attention and making her stop her tantrum. "But perhaps this is the ultimate test for you." She said slowly, trying to form the words for her niece.
Bellatrix paused, before rubbing at her eyes, making her look more like a raccoon than anything else, but she stopped her angry crying and tantrum. She still had a look of anger on her face, but she had stopped the tears running down her face.
"I know you, Bella. You know that there is something going on. Especially in recent years that the Dark Lord has been making his appearances…I know you have also been involved as well." She stated looking at her with cold eyes.
Bellatrix shifted a little in her place. Yes…Cassiopeia has eyes and ears everywhere. Cassiopeia narrowed her eyes at her niece. Thinking that she probably doesn't know what she was getting into.
"I…" Bellatrix started looking down at the floor. "I don't know what to think of him. But…he has ideas, good ones, but…"
She took a deep breath and looked up steadfastly at her aunt.
"I don't see the reason to kill off those who do have magic. Mudbloods or otherwise…our society thrives on magic, if we get rid of those who have magic flowing through their veins we would just kill off ourselves slowly." She frowned.
Cassiopeia raised an eyebrow, this was a curious perspective that Bellatrix had.
"Is that so?" She asked.
Bellatrix shifted on her feet, looking off to the side and scrunched her face a bit before she looked like the child that Bellatrix once was.
"It's something strange...I don't like how the Dark Lord is planning things." Bellatrix frowned. "It's just too convenient and much too suspicious."
At least Bellatrix listened to her instincts much more than the average witch and wizard. Adding in the fact that she worked as an Auror, she honed in such instincts to keep her alive.
Cassiopeia sneered, if Druella and Cygnus were still alive, they would be ashamed of how their daughter had turned out. They had died fairly young in a freak charm accident that affected them and the people around them at the Ministry. It wasn't even an open casket funeral.
Bellatrix had fallen far. What with the wedding to LeStrange, Andromeda running off with a Muggleborn, and not to mention that Lucius Malfoy is courting Narcissa, the stress of trying to hold things together for her family was getting to Bellatrix.
It got worse when Sirius ran off away from home. Bellatrix and Sirius weren't always close, save for when they were children, but they were cousins. Bellatrix, though she may hide it, was always a stickler for 'Blood is Thicker than water'. Especially when it came to Family. Regulus was left to becoming the next head of the Black family, but Bellatrix could see that the young boy didn't want it.
But for Bellatrix to tie herself to a Dark Lord whose motives were questionable and harming to the magical world, that wasn't like her at all. Where was the proud witch who wouldn't bow to anyone? The Little witch who when she was a young girl claimed that she would grow up to be like one of their ancestors, Lynx Black who was a witch of power and honor?
"So…" Cassiopeia curled her lip cruelly, gaining Bellatrix's attention.
Bellatrix didn't look like the Auror who would take on cold cases to find the killers who may have been long gone from this community, it wasn't the same woman who was a hurricane, a force to be reckoned with - she now looked like a despondent and meek woman. Not at all like the spitfire hell girl that she once was. Well then, Cassiopeia was nothing but a harsh woman who will make sure that reality is bashed into your mind. Bellatrix was no different.
"You have tied yourself to a master then." Cassiopeia spoke cruelly as she smiled wickedly.
Bellatrix tensed, not even looking up at her aunt.
"How low of you. To be brought down to such a point where you kiss the feet of a lord who we don't know of. You are a slave to him Bellatrix. Your ancestors must be ashamed." Cassiopeia smirked.
"I'M NO ONE'S SLAVE!" Bellatrix stamped her foot on the floor and looked up at her with glowing purple eyes, her hair crackled with static.
Cassiopeia wasn't affected by this show of power. True, Bellatrix was a fairly strong witch, but Cassiopeia had many years of experience of dueling. Both Dirty and clean tactics. But she wasn't worried about dueling Bellatrix.
"Then prove it." She clipped.
Bellatrix calmed down a bit. The glow from her eyes disappeared and she breathed heavily. She knew that if she tried to duel Cassiopeia she would probably lose...harshly too.
"I have...an idea...but I'm not sure if it will work." She said quietly.
"Oh?" She raised an eyebrow.
"It might work...it might not. We'll have to see. I just wonder what will happened to me…" Bellatrix muttered.
The rest of the time Bellatrix was sitting on the couch muttering to herself; Cassiopeia making sure that she had something to eat and drink before she left.
"Auntie...thank you." She spoke before leaving.
The next time Cassiopeia saw Bellatrix, she was a completely different woman. The running joke in the Black family was that Bellatrix had a glint of madness in her eyes, it was a subtle light, but it was there. Now the Madness utterly consumed her. Her silver-violet eyes held a maniacal look of insanity if one were to stare in her eyes for too long. She had begun to be praising the Dark Lord for his taking the reins to eradicate the muggleborns, muggles and blood traitors.
This change was after the wedding to LeStrange. She had a 360 degree personality change from the woman she knew before. Cassiopeia remembered the event when she became wed to him, she had a calculating look in her eyes and a cruel smile, a smile that was reserved for those who earned her wrath. And Merlin help you if you were in the way of Bellatrix Black's wrath. You may not live to tell the tale.
But whatever the woman she once was before was gone, and in her place the night after her wedding, was a radical psycho who was hell bent on serving the Dark Lord with all her life. The Auror and Hit-Witch that was Bellatrix Black was gone. The Murderer Bellatrix LeStrange was in her place.
Though it has been years, Cassiopeia could still remember that Bellatrix had a plan. What the plan entailed she would never know. Bellatrix was not one for telling plans unless she had to.
"My Lady?" Beth asked as she stood by her.
Cassiopeia shook her head lightly and turned her head away from the wanted poster, putting all her memories of her Niece away in her mind, she straightened herself up and put on a haughty smirk.
"Come Along, Beth…we must meet up with Draco at Flourish and Blott's." She spoke with a purpose.
The Two women make their way down the street, heading to their destination.
TAL21: Well, I'm sorry that the chapter isn't longer, but this was the best I can do to keep things going. The Next Chapter will deal with Harry and Zoe finishing up at Gringotts and then we get back to Hermione and Draco with the Weasley Siblings. It's pretty interesting to write that is for sure. Ive been picking up hours at work because I'm in a bit of money troubles, plus I had to pay for my dogs eye surgery to get it removed because the ulcer was getting bad in it. So...Hocus Pocus I'm Brokus. But this chapter should be giving you quite a bit of hints of what I'm doing with Bellatrix in future chapters. I'm actually planning on writing another Bellatrix One-shot that is an extension to this story, mostly because i do enjoy the complexity of Bellatrix. Now, Off to the SHOUT OUTS!:
Dragons9: The reason why Harry didn't appear in the parchment for titles and heirs is because he's not officially claimed it yet. In all intents and purposes Sirius and Regulus are still alive for the positions as heads of the family. So Sirius' will hasn't come into play just yet. It will eventually.
Qwerty: Oh gosh, I would love to have some sort of fan-art for this story. Because I don't know about you, If i had any artistic skills, I would be making a comic instead of a story. XD
LoveDarkHina: Regulus will not be teaching Hogwarts students Paladins. It's a high level spell, and it takes a lot of magic to summon one. But that doesn't mean that Harry and Draco can't learn how to do it on their own time. It'll come into play eventually. XD
Silver Ame Tsukino: I've always Liked Dramione. The development will be slow obviously, but it will also play pretty well true to the characters. But there are quite a few pairings in this story so I'll be playing around with a lot of them. :)
NatNicole: I always enjoy reading your reviews. It really does keep me going here. I'm glad you enjoyed Draco's POV in the previous chapter. Trust me, He's a bit tricky to work with as far as staying true to canon, but I'm doing a pretty good job so far. Please keep up your reviews!
Miss Corrine: I'm glad that you enjoyed the previous chapter. Ive always loved working on my Black Family Headcannonbecause we really didn't get a feel for them in the Books. And Yes, Ive stuck with the Dark aspects of the family, but for good reason mind you, and if anything, no witch or wizard is inherently dark. It's always intent, I believe. Love your reviews!
Vanimia: Love what you are doing for the French Translation of my story. I have to use google translate to read the reviews and the like, but otherwise, I love it! And I have been reading Basilisk Born in my spare time. :) And Yes, The Black Family has always been the most interesting of the family's in Harry Potter. Why JK never jumped the bandwagon to expand on them, I'll never know. XD
WildTrance: Keep In mind, This universe is set in the 90s. There was always some conspiracy theories about vaccines being linked to autism and of course has been rejected by the medical communitys because of unfounded and fraudulent studies. Zoe is smart. She used that anology to make a point, even though she herself is skeptical about the connection between vaccines and autism. But it was the analogy that she needed to make a point, not that she believes that it is fact. I personally believe that it's a crock as well. So that is my stance of vaccines. They are useful for our health, but so far as causing autism? No grounds whatsoever.
TAL21: Okay, That's it for my shout-outs, I hope you guys enjoyed this chapter and I hope to hear DETAILED and LONG reviews from you guys! I love reading your reviews because that is what keeps me going. I'll see you guys in the next chapter, and hope that you all will keep chugging with me along. See you then!
Question Time: What Kind of Headcanons do you like in Harry Potter? My personal favorites will always be The Black Family because there is so little on them. But I take Artistic License to make them pretty awesome!
KEEP ON READING AND WRITING!