Disclaimer: All rights, characters and names belong to Rowling, I Amalynne O'hara own nothing, sadly.
N/A: Once you get past the intro it's swift reading, so fear not dear reader.
"You might think of Harry," said Dumbledore, "When you look through Sirius' things. He'd treasure a memory of his godfather. You will look won't you Remus and find something for the boy, something for yourself too perhaps?"
Remus smiled slightly, "Of course Albus. Sentiment really wasn't one of Padfoot's traits, but I'll look nonetheless."
"Good man," Dumbledore pat Remus on the shoulder. "I doubt the Marauders would leave their legacy unknown, Sirius was never one to disappoint… you'll find something Moony my lad," Dumbledore winked, and then turned the brass doorknob, exiting Grimmauld place.
Something for Harry, something that had belonged to Sirius? Remus could hardly think what this could be. Whatever it was, it could only be found here in this most ancient house of Black. Mrs. Black had been silenced in the hall and Kreacher had left, most undoubtedly, for the Malfoy's, his new masters. An eerie silence crept from the floorboards and the rafters. A chilly fear began to slip back into #12's rooms, that lonely darkness had returned. Abandoned and masterless, this house now seemed as it was before Sirius had returned.
Remus stood alone in the stairwell, feeling these intimidating new pressures of the house, recalling Sirius' loathing for it. Buckbeak screeched from upstairs and the silence was broken. Removing himself from his daze, Remus made his way up the stairs to the hippogriff's room. He pacified the beast with a bounty of dead rats, and then began looking through the drawers in a vanity on the opposite wall.
Articles of old clothing, a number of odorous mothballs, and some eau de toilette were found in the first drawer, disappointing Remus greatly. He progressed to the second and third, discovering more amounts of clothing and a collection of chocolate frog cards. He made a mental note to give them to Ron on their next meeting. Coming to the fourth and final drawer, Remus was pleased to find something of greater interest, newspaper clippings form the Daily Prophet, neatly placed in a wooden box. Some articles dated back fifteen and sixteen years before, to the early years of Voldemort's fall. Remus was quite intrigued, but he wasn't sure they would be a suitable enough memory for Harry, so delved deeper.
Under the wooden box lay a mirror, Harry had the other one, Remus remembered, and set it aside as something of a keepsake. Some unmatched socks and Bertti Botts' Beans wrappers later, Remus fingered a small box in the back of the drawer. It looked as if it could hold no more than a ring, hinged in wood, with black paint chipping on the corners. A single golden S was etched on the top, and a metal clasp kept the box shut, in an elaborate B. Remus shook it, no sound, then cautiously lifted the latch. The little box appeared empty, until it began to expand and grow in his hands. It had soon morphed into a giant chest, now heavy and painful on Remus' lap. It took great effort to pull the chest off him, but when he did, he found it full and overflowing with treasures from the past.
Treasure such as: dress robes from seventh year, a crimson and gold tie dotted with lipstick (Remus shook his head humorously at this), an innocent looking pocket comb that folded into a knife, a yellowing pearl strand (Remus recalled that Sirius gave this to every girl he dated for a time, then asked for it back upon a breakup), and a folded leaflet that read the word Marauders. Remus opened it only to find a ticktacktoe game between James and Sirius, in which Prongs had suffered considerable losses. Remus could hardly understand why anyone would keep such a frivolous item, so tossed it aside in a growing pile on the floor. He glanced away, but then quickly glanced back. A word had caught his eye on the supposed ticktacktoe game, a particularly naughty swear word.
He picked up the aged parchment once more only to find the hidden truth of this document. Remus now knew it to be a game to see who could out wit the other with retorts and saucy comebacks. This had been a way of practice for Padfoot and Prongs, to sharpen their tongues a bit. This time James had the higher score, he had out witted Padfoot's insult of "Gag a maggot you filthy faggot!" to "Kiss me here, cow derriere!" Remus slipped the parchment into his robes, he would keep that, he really didn't think it was suitable for Harry.
Beneath Sirius' first detention slip Remus caught a glimpse of a miniature waving arm. He removed the detention to see a weathered old photograph of the Marauders, twenty years before. They were all about fifteen, in their fifth year, standing outside the Hogwarts express, waving at the camera. James kept frowning and smiling, rumpling his hair and rubbing his nose. Peter was waving energetically to James' left (Remus' right), hyper and tensed, his blue eyes bulging. Remus' sight drifted to his fifteen year old self. It was obvious he was straining a smile and he had a really longing look of some good bed rest. Remus sighed and let his eyes travel back to the other side of James, to the half hidden face of Sirius. James' hair was blocking most of Sirius' face from view, but that rich, daring smile made him ever recognizable. It seemed he hadn't been ready for this shot, because it was known that he, Sirius, loved to hog the spotlight. James and Sirius were always at competition for attention and this didn't fail for pictures. Apparently, James had won this time.
The photo beneath flattered Sirius much more. It was of him, alone, leaning with a certain grace against the stairwell to the boys dormitories in the Gryffindor common room. This shot, Remus guessed, was taken in about their sixth year, he determined by Sirius' height and build. He could be no older than sixteen here. Sirius' face was drawn in a winning half smile, his eyes of a haunting smoky gray were illuminated in the dieing firelight of the common room, and his head was cocked back in a relaxed and confident manner. Elegant layers of black hair fell neatly to his shoulders, not too neatly, just ruggedly enough to set female hearts aflutter. Remus felt a twinge of jealousy for Sirius' looks, quickly putting it behind him, remembering the sunken, doleful eyes of Azkaban he had later received.
In his youth, Remus' envy grew much deeper. He had hated Padfoot at times for the way his clothes fit and flowed with him so perfectly, how girls gawked and squealed at the sight of him in the halls, and how he could pick and choose between the lot of them. Sixteen-year-old Remus had not had such luck, yes he had admirers and girlfriends, but they never stuck around long enough. Come full moon and his seclusion, girls had lost their trust for him, and thought him off with another. Remus remembered one occasion where Sirius had mentioned taking a moonlit stroll with a date. Remus had promptly told him to shut up, and then confined himself to the dormitory all night, hiding under his sheets as he cried. Remus dismissed this memory too. After all, this was no time to feel sorry for himself, this was time to think of Harry, for Harry.
He pushed the photos aside, thinking them too painful and grabbed the next best thing in the chest. It was a blue, cracked leather booklet, water stained and yellow paged. He flipped through the leaves, only to find the pages blank. Remus stopped, looking back to the book's cover again. Somehow it was familiar, he had seen this book before, but… wait! This was no book, a journal, this was Sirius' diary. The memory flashed bright and sudden in Remus' mind. This journal he had seen on Sirius' pillow in the mornings, left on the floor some days, pilled with text books and papers, but always greeted by Sirius some point in the day, when he wrote in it.
Recalling Sirius' will never to divulge personal information to a soul, save James maybe, Remus searched for the mystery behind this diary. He pondered a moment, and then opened the cover to the first blank page. To his surprise, words in an elegant script began to flow before him on the yellowing parchment.
"Welcome…" scrolled an elegant narrow script, the words vanished, "…to… The Ever Secret Diary of…" the words faded and were replaced by fresh ink, this time in a messy scroll, "…Sirius Black… Please enter password." The page stalled a moment and then a thick black line entered across the middle. "X".
Remus gazed at the page, contemplating Sirius' choice words, and wondered too, at the mischief he could have plagued upon this book in his youth. So Remus chose carefully and wrote "Padfoot, the Grim."
"Ooh! Very good…" the page replied, "But… WRONG!" The page showed a frowning face, which took pleasure in blowing raspberries at the viewer. The tattered leaves ruffled menacingly in a sudden breeze. There was a flash of light and the book glistened gold from the centers. The writing returned.
"Just kidding… you're right!" The frowning face smiled and said, "Enter." But not before more writing appeared on the page…
"Master Black bids you his complements and that you will forgive him for playing with your mind… he also endows you the burden of knowing the secret of the great prodigy and kingly God, Sirius Black. He makes it clear that you yourself are under an oath secrecy and that before embarking one must remember that past soon becomes present and present become future and that Sirius Black hardly ever thought that at all… he will also state that he is exceedingly bored and that is the only reason he is writing in third person… to himself in fact… oh what a wonderful life."
Remus turned the page, and in Sirius' sixteen-year-old scrawl, shown the date June 28th, summer before sixth year.
"So what'd you think? TELL ME, TELL ME! REVIEW!" the insignificant speck cried out into the abyss.