Obligatory Disclaimer: This fanfic has been doused in lawyer repellent. .Miranda and Mr. Dolor are mine. Everybody else belongs to J.K. Rowling.

Author's Note: This story is pretty dark. You have been warned.

"I Remember You"

It seemed a disgrace to my mother when I first learned of Miranda's existence. She were the reminder of that shame and my mother hated her for it. Not only had my father lapsed in fidelity, with a Muggle-born of all people, but the evidence of his adultery was forever under her nose. Miranda's every gesture summoned the memory of a woman with laughing gray eyes, a woman my father gave his love to when the wife he had married our of duty gave him nothing but distance after having done her duty and provided the requisite heir.

I remember her first night with us. Miranda's eyes were still red and glassy from the tears she cried at your mother's funeral and her hair had long ago escaped from the braids it had been forced into earlier, she seemed more an child of the streets than a relation of mine. I remember having heard my father cry, I remember the loud arguments that heralded her arrival. Most of all, I remember the hate that crept into my mother's face when she looked at Miranda.

In my mind I can see myself packing to go to Hogwarts. Miranda is standing in the doorway holding her cat with her eyes shadowing my every move.

"Will I get to go to Hogwarts when I'm eleven?"

"I'm sure you will, Miranda." I said as I closed the lid on my trunk.

"Do you think I'll be sorted into Slytherin like father?"

"Since I don't know how they sort people I can't answer that."

"What house do you want to be in?"

"Slytherin. Father and my Mother were both in it." As soon as I mentioned my mother, I regretted the words.

Miranda's eyes clouded and she stroked the cat wistfully. She seldom spoke of her own mother, it was not encouraged. "My mother was a Gryffindor, I think."

"Don't say that around here Miri."

"I don't. I just told you. You don't tell, will you?"

"Of course not."

"What will happen when I go to school too?"

I stared at her. "What do you mean?"

"I'm your sister."

"Yes."

"Will you tell people at school that I'm your sister? When your friends are over your mother makes me stay away."

"It is to protect you, Miranda. People can be cruel. If it got out that you were the daughter of my father's mistress, things would be bad for you. I don't want you to get hurt." I ruffled her hair affectionately.

"I bet your mother doesn't see it that way." Miranda replied astutely. Miranda always was painfully aware of her awkward place in the household.

"No she doesn't." I agreed.

Two years later when she entered Hogwarts, they made Miranda use her mother's surname. I watched her enter the great hall with the other first years and fervently hoped none would realize we were related.

"Who are you staring at?" Goyle hissed.

I made myself look away. "I'm watching the first years, stupid. After all if we get a bunch of idiots in Slytherin we'll never recapture the house cup from the Gryffindors."

Goyle nodded. He was so easy to appease.

I watched the sorting trying not to show any particular interest when my half-sister's name was called.

"Delaney, Miranda!" Barked McGonagall. I crossed my fingers under the table even though I knew it was stupid and childish. The hat seemed determined to drive me to insanity as it took a long time with Miranda before shouting out a house.

"RAVENCLAW!"

I sighed in relief.

No one ever realized that I shared blood ties with a Ravenclaw. No one ever considered my hard expression was a mask when Miranda became a Chaser for Ravenclaw in her second year. They never knew my heart leapt into my throat when Potter nearly knocked her off her broom as he went whizzing by, Ravenclaw was awarded a penalty. Everyone thought I grinned because Miranda got the quaffle past the Gryffindor Keeper. Maybe it was just sweeter that she beat my enemies that day.

She never said anything at school, though every now and again she'd owl me or I would owl her. Our phony signatures were amusing as were the codes we used.

When she graduated, Miranda moved out. She seldom wrote to me, I guess the habits we established in school proved to difficult to break. By then I was too busy with my own work.

I'm not exactly certain why I became a Death Eater. Perhaps it was peer pressure, the lure of power, or that it was expected for a member of such a respectable old Slytherin family, but become a Death Eater I did. For a time I enjoyed the work, the fear we inspired and how the Daily Prophet extolled our exploits in morbid detail like a parent telling a relative about the misdeeds of a child.

We were often told to go to a particular house and murder the inhabitants, usually Aurors, Ministry officials and the like. I was not often part of execution squads. My forte was potions and I brewed the nasty little concoctions used when the Dark Lord wanted information and the victim was not forthcoming even when the Imperius Curse was used. The number of people resistant seemed to grow constantly and I was always busy.

Veritaserum is not easy to brew although the ingredients are common. It requires many precisely timed elements working in perfect harmony or the concoction turns into blue sludge.

It was my luck that Avery appeared in the doorway just as I entered the most delicate phase of the procedure.

"The Lord requires some of your potions."

I scowl at him after checking that halting the process now will not harm the potion. I'd hate to have to start from scratch, but a few extra minutes of simmering won't likely do much harm. "Which potions?"

He rattles off the five of the nastiest things I make. I give him what he wants and he goes away. My dungeon is not exactly considered a welcoming place.

The next pest in rotation is Crabbe. Hoping he won't drop the crystal vial I so carefully filled with the freshly made truth potion, I send him on his way.

Avery returns an hour later as I'm washing the knives in the sink. I refuse to use cleaning spells on my knives as they dull the blades no matter how often I sharpen them.

"What do you need this time?' I ask wearily, trying to keep the agitation from my voice.

Avery grins. "The Lord thought you might want to see your potions in use."

I nodd and follow Avery up the narrow stone steps to the fireplace. Within minutes I'm brushing the soot from my robes. The fireplace was simply caked with soot and my robes are covered with it.

"Tell the House-elves to clean these things out better." I growl as he finish using a quick charm to remove the remainder of the soot. Avery follows my example and uses the same charm on himself.

"That's Goyle's department. This estate belongs to his family." Avery reminds me.

Avery ushers me into an another room. Since he makes no mention of concealing our features, I know that the subject of this demonstration will not likely survive the night. The Lord would not allow someone to have seen so many unmasked Death Eaters to live.

There is something of a party atmosphere about. In the center of a circle of Death Eaters, a man withers on the floor. He shakes uncontrollably.

"We gave him the entire vial of veritaserum." Avery whispers.

I try not to shudder. Years later when I gave Dumbledore the last of my store of veritaserum to use on Crouch, I knew Dumbledore would exercise restraint. A drop or two is enough, but an entire vial causes tremors in the victim as it gnaws holes in their veins. The man's eyes have the distant look that comes when physical pain is so great the mind barricades itself and the person perceives events almost as though they occur to someone else.

The man crumples on the ground muttering nonsense. He never gets up.

"Interesting effect." Voldemort says thoughtfully. "He was stubborn, but we got the information we needed out of him before he...succumbed." He waves his hand and two Death Eaters step forward to take the body someplace where it can be found.

"What is your command, lord?"

"Thanks to Mr. Dolor," Voldemort indicates the floor space recently occupied by the deceased, "we know the Ministry is having progress with its attempts to create counter-curses to the Unforgivables. We also know that an Unspeakable has unearthed and translated Egyptian tablets that may provide the key to creating counter-curses. That Unspeakable is now dead thanks to one of your associates."

"So that's what he used the fire for." Avery muttered.

"However, his assistant escaped."

"By now she could be back at Ministry headquarters." Avery spoke up.

Voldemort shot him a withering glare and Avery shrunk back. "The tablets are fragile and either floo powder or apparating would be too much of a risk. She'll have to fly. She's only had two hours head start and will head straight for the Ministry. We can intercept Delaney before she has the chance to show anyone the tablets."

"Delaney?" I ask, "Miranda Delaney?" Miranda was an Unspeakable? It did not seem possible.

The Dark Lord stared at me. "You know her?"

"She was a Chaser for Ravenclaw, two years younger than I." I responded.

Voldemort smiled. "Excellent. You know what she looks like. You will go with Avery and see to it that she does not reach her destination."

Muggles say hindsight is 20/20. I'm not sure why I did as I was bid. It was easy to point out Miranda, Avery could have done it without me. I flew so seldom it had seemed to waste of gold and even flying to where we could intercept her, my broom lagged. I really should have asked to borrow someone elses, but I was only along to make an identification.

"Is that her?" Avery demanded.

"Yes."

Immediately he took off after her and I followed him, urging my broom to go faster. It did not. Avery got farther and farther out in front of me until he seemed a small blur in the sky. Miranda must have spotted him because she sped up. She was still an excellent flyer but her broom was not as good as Avery's.

Helplessly I watched him catch up to her. I closed my eyes so I did not have to watch, but her scream pierced my ears. An eternity came and went before a heavy silence replaced her cry.

I landed when it was over. Thankfully Avery was not paying much attention to me. He wrestled Miranda's backpack off her and opened it to pull out a magically sealed box presumably containing the tablets. He looked up at me.

"I'll take these to the lord." He mounted his broom without a backward glance.

"I'll take the body someplace where it won't be found. The Ministry will be left wondering and no one will no how close she came." I forced myself to say.

"Good idea."

"They'll think she died in Egypt and that is where they'll look."

"Why don't you take the Mudblood's broom? Its better than that relic you persist in using." Avery said casually as he took off. I ached to wrap my hands around his throat and squeeze, but I held myself in check until I was certain he was gone. Miranda was not a Mudblood I wanted to scream, she was a half-blood and shared that half with me through our father.

Miranda lay on the ground like a crumpled doll. I knelt beside her and gently brushed her night dark hair away from her closed eyes. Her skin was still warm and I could feel a pulse, but it took a moment to sink in that Avery had not killed her. I could see each breathe was a battle and knew she needed more help than I could give her.

"Oh Miri, I'm so sorry." I whispered as I gently scooped her up into my arms. After A moment's hesitation I took her to the one place I could think of where she might get help. The one place where my Death Eater robes would be noticed second and Miri's condition first. Already my mind was manufacturing possible explanations and excuses for Voldemort and I hated myself for it.

To be perfectly honest I'm not sure who was more surprised, Dumbledore or myself, when an hour later I barged into his office with Miranda's limp form in my arms. Dumbledore got up from his desk abruptly. I wonder what he made of the sight. I have never been able to ask.

"Headmaster. Please help my sister." I pleaded.

"Your sister?" He glanced from me to Miranda and nodded. I followed him to the hospital wing. I sat up with her the entire night and Madam Pomprey did everything she could, but Miri died with the dawn.

"She was your sister?" Dumbledore asked quietly.

"My father had an affair. Miranda was the result." Dumbledore did not pry further and left me to my grief.

With Miranda's death, the part of me that liked being a Death Eater shriveled and died and the part of me that hated Lord Voldemort was born. When Dumbledore hesitantly asked me to spy for him, I readily agreed.

"I'll see you son, headmaster." I said as I finally left.

"Be careful Severus."

I did not look back, my memories of Miranda was all I would see.

FIN