During her imprisonment in the lower levels of Azkaban, Bellatrix Lestange's mental status keeps mesmerizing the guards. No one wants to be on the other side of the double doors that lead to the isolation corridor, even if the wages are better and there is absolutely no contact with the inmates once they are secured in there cells, or with the ever present Dementor. Monitoring charms exist for a reason after all…
Through a mirror like device they can see what happens in the corridor and each of the 3damp cells. Today, like most days since Lestrange was transferred into the Isolation Kingdom (as it has been unofficially named), Bellatrix is sitting on the cold concrete floor of her cell, hugging her knees, rocking back and forth, eyes closed and humming some undecipherable mantra. She has been calm for the last few hours; to the outside world, that is. But the guards only know what they see…
This afternoon, a new inmate will be transferred to Isolation. Guilty of unmentionable crimes and with a bad behaviour on the upper levels, it had been decided that he needs a lesson and that a few days down there should be enough to break him. When the time comes, the Dementor affected to the corridor leaves his usual post in front of the one his race calls the Queen of Hell and glides until it reaches the opposite cell. The door is already open, and the Dementor waits for the new soul to reach its destination.
Meanwhile in the opposite room, if we can call a cell a room, Bellatrix feels the shift in the atmosphere, her mind feels less clouded, and the tiny, dark corner of her mind that is not consumed by the madness of Azkaban starts expanding again very slowly. She knows what is going to happen sooner than later today, that she won't be the only one whose screams are heard tonight. Meanwhile, she keeps the act and goes unnoticed.
"No! Not the Kingdom! Anything but the Kingdom!" Desperate screams are already echoing and the double doors are still closed.
Bellatrix's lips twitch, and from rocking back and forth she starts using a more circular pattern in her movements. No one sees it. She starts mumbling louder. "My Lord, darkest of the darkest, let me rule with you..." No one hears it, the Dementor feels something is different, but it is also getting hungry for the new soul. It loves variety, you see...
The double doors at the end of the corridor open, then close with a resonating noise.
The new inmate is screaming, begging as if he was physically tortured. The dark corner of Bellatrix's now clearer mind loves hearing those screams. There was a time, many years ago, where she was the cause of all those screaming and begging, and she remembers how much she used to get a rush of adrenaline from torturing people. "Let's rule together my Lord... My kingdom is your Kingdom."Her eyelids opens partially, she looks like she is in a trance.
Footsteps are approaching, the two guards are escorting the new inmate, a tiny woman with dishevelled greying hair, trying to over come the body binding she is subjected too, still screaming. The guards shove her into her cell, close the doors and turn up to leave. One of them takes a look at the other woman, the one he hears the screams everyday.
"Lestrange! You have a new neighbour for a few days! Looks like Skinny here was trying to emulate you in Brecon Beacons. Unforgivable trio, necromancy, cannibalism, she made quite a mess, almost up to your level." He pauses, then turn back to the new inmate. "And you, Skinny, a piece of advice. Don't make the Queen mad, everything they say about her upstairs is true. Or not... You don't want to find out..." And he leaves, lifting the binding spell off the newcomer.
Bellatrix hears everything, and suppress a snicker when she feels the atmosphere changing again. The air is getting colder, it looks like they have called a new Dementor for her. This one feels a tiny bit different than the other. Skinny must be deemed very special they want her to have a "personal guard" while in the Kingdom. This is going to be a long night, and she knows it. Hopefully, it will be over soon and everything will go back to normal, as normal can be here...
Slowly the day morphs into the night but no one really cares as there are no windows in the lower levels. Slowly two different type of screams are being heard. Skinny, rolled into a ball in the farthest corner of her cell, is reliving all her nightmares and her fear of Bellatrix's Kingdom and of the "Queen" take over.
On the other side of the corridor, Queen Bellatrix, as she likes to think of herself these days, is still sitting in the same spot than hours earlier. She stops moving, he arms are now parallels to the flow and her nos is pointing to the ceiling. Her mantra-like mumbling morphs into some sort of chanting. No one understands what she says. Screams of terror continue from Skinny's side.
In the guards office, both guards are chatting while drinking their tea. The cold from the two Dementors crosses the double doors and infiltrates the air. When they bring someone new in, they are supposed to monitor the newcomer closely, and they do it well. What they do not do tonight is monitor Bellatrix's cell as well as usual. The monitoring device, while able to monitor visually two places simultaneously, only transmit the sound from one place at a time. And tonight they are listening to Skinny. The evening turn into night, the night shift guard come to take their place, more tea is drank. Details from Skinny's story in Brecon Beacons are explained, then the day shift guards leave.
The night duty guard turns the monitoring to Bellatrix's side. The chanting he hears is unusual. Screams mixed mantra-like guttural sounds is not something he hears often. Bellatrix looks like she is in a trance, not unlike she has had in the past when they brought new inmates. Everybody here knows she prefers not to be disturbed and seems to enjoy having her own personal Dementor.
On the other side of the corridor, Skinny is still terrorized by her personal Dementor, by her neighbour and her own nightmares. Screams of terror are almost constant, stopping only so she can catch her breath. She feels something is odd, but can't figure out what it is.
Bellatrix eyelids open complete, and she looks right in front of her. Her eyeballs are totally black. She is now still and silent as a statue. That intrigues the guard, but he knows not to go out in the corridor during his shift. After a minute of total silence from Bellatrix, she start chanting again. The air in her cell is vibrating, and the vibration take its course until it reaches Skinny in the farthest corner of her cell.
Skinny is still rolled into a ball on the fool, screaming, the odd feeling is turning into a bad feeling. While the air of the cell is still cold, she feel like she is burning, she has trouble breathing. There is a burning smell surrounding her. She hears a voice but can't decipher what it says. Scared, she opens her eyes to look around to see the flames all over her.
"Quiet... quiet... quiet... QUIET ! QUIIIIIIEEEEEET!" As Bellatrix finishes her chanting and falls on the floor from exhaustion, there is a sudden silence in the solitary confinement corridor.
Still looking at the monitoring device, the guard looks dumbfounded. He just witnessed a prisoner spontaneously combust, while the other prisoner looks like she was in trance and caused the said combustion. "Well," he says to himself, "Skinny was told not to get Bellatrix mad. And everybody knows that she never tolerated any form of competition in regard to cruelty and torture. One less criminal, good riddance."
"Now, my Lord, my Love, she speaks of silence..." Bellatrix slowly drift away in a deep slumber. Unusually tonight, the nightmares do not come, and, when she wakes up a few hours later, her eyes back to normal, the dark corner of her mind that she keeps safe from the madness has grown a tiny bit. She knows they won't bother her today after what happened last night. Her usual Dementor is back to its place, and the silence is back. Nothing but her, nothing but her and the voices in her head. Everything is as it should be for the witch who calls herself the Queen of Hell.