PTB'S NOTE- This was done by my friend RoS, but she can't get onto right now. Being as impaitent as she is, she asked me to post it. So, here it is.
A/N: This was inspired by the song with the same name from the musical "Wicked". Some songs just reminded me of Narcissa and Regulus, for no particular reason. This song in particular reminded me of Regulus at this moment. I couldn't resist writing it. There is some kind of sadness to it.
Please note, I have no idea how old Draco is for the bulk of this story. I do know that in OotP it says that Regulus had died fifteen years prior to then. Since Lily and James were killed when Harry was just over a year old, and he's fifteen in OotP, that would place Regulus's death the year before Lily and James's and make both Harry and Draco VERY little.
Please note, this story functions under my theory that Regulus is R.A.B. so spoilers to Half-Blood Prince.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters, which is really very sad.
Summery: Narcissa Malfoy reflects on the last conversation she had with her cousin, Regulus.
Authoress: RoS (Regulus of Slytherin)
Title: Defying Gravity
Narcissa wandered Malfoy Manor in silence. Not that there was anyone to talk to, of course, since Draco was off at school and Lucius was...but she didn't want to think about that. She climbed the stairs to the attic with nothing but the echos of her footfalls to keep her company.
When she reached the top, she opened the door quickly. Like everything in Malfoy Manor, the attic was spacious. It had windows that faced each direction, and was full of odd and interesting looking objects. Rarely as she came up there, she knew exactly where the book was. Tucked up on a dusty old book shelf, it sat. The book itself was harmless enough, but Narcissa hesitated as her pale hand reached up for it.
"Do I really want to do this?" She asked the dusty silence in a trembling whisper. She answered herself almost immediately. "Yes...I need to remind myself he was real." With that, her thin fingers wrapped around the back of the spine and pulled the book down. Her free hand brushed one blonde lock back from her face as she sat on the nearby window seat.
Her fingers trembled as she flipped through the pages. The book was obviously a photo album. Smiling children waved up at her from the pages, but she scarcely spared them a glance. She flipped through the worn pages quickly, trying not to stop and look at each picture. There was one she was looking for, a specific picture she had to find.
She stopped suddenly, caught off guard when her fingers actually stumbled upon the correct page. The page held only one picture. A boy, probably only sixteen years of age, with short black hair and dancing blue eyes. He was grinning up at her, and gave her a thumbs up. Closing her eyes, Narcissa hugged the book to her chest.
"Oh, Regulus..." She sighed, for that was who it was. The picture was the only one she had of her young cousin, and for the first time she suddenly wished she had more. Losing him had been so hard that until then she had tried hard to forget him. But her son, her little Draco...he was doing the same thing Regulus had done. He was to young, much to young, to want to be a Death Eater, but he felt he had to. Felt he had to redeem the family name somehow, just as Regulus had done after Sirius had gone against everything being a Black meant. Draco was doing what Regulus had predicted he one day would.
Rain began to spatter the window as Narcissa Malfoy opened her eyes. Against her will, she found herself transported back to that conversation with her younger cousin. Back to the last conversation they'd ever had...
"Horcrux?" Narcissa asked, sitting down on her bed. Regulus had turned up on her doorstep a half an hour before, and had spent the time describing to her an impossible conversation he had overheard between the Dark Lord and some Death Eater the nineteen-year-old boy had not recognized. It involved this thing- this horcrux whatever it was- and Narcissa found herself way out of her depth. "Regulus, what does that mean?"
"It means he can't be killed," Regulus offered, still pacing the length of the master bedroom of Malfoy Manor. His right hand held his wand tightly against his side while his left was playing with his hair. It was a habit the teen had when he was anxious or frightened. He'd done it for as long as Narcissa had known him. "He's split his soul...put it in solid objects...like the locket they were talking about."
"Regulus, you're not making any sense. And why are you so frightened? The Dark Lord doesn't know you heard."
"Not if you're smart." Narcissa said as she reached into the cradle at the end of her bed. She ran one finger along the cheek of her sleeping infant son, Draco. The baby made a soft sound in response.
Regulus smiled at her, but it was a smile without any trace of happiness. It made her feel like someone had thrust a block of ice into her stomach. "That's just it, Cissy. I'm not going to be smart."
"You're not going to tell him, are you?" Narcissa asked, startled. Her blue-green eyes sought his own slate colored ones.
"No," Regulus said, not breaking the contact. "I'm going to destroy it."
"What?" Narcissa got to her feet, her blonde locks falling out of the bun she'd had them pulled in and hanging lose around her shoulders. "Regulus, that's treachery!"
"I know," he said calmly. He stopped pacing and looked at her evenly. "I don't care."
"What do you mean you don't care?" Narcissa shot back as she jumped to her feet; her fiery Black temper was getting the better of her.
Regulus shrugged, dropping his left hand to his side. "Just what I said, Cissy. I don't care if it's treachery. I'm going to destroy it. The Dark Lord must be stopped."
Narcissa's anger quickly evaporated into fear. Fear for Regulus, and fear for herself. She would have to turn him in. If the Dark Lord found out she had known...but if she could talk him out of it, then there was no reason to fear. "Regulus, I don't know what has gotten into you, but think about what you're doing! You're throwing everything away. Just keep your mouth shut, Regulus. You can still have everything you ever worked for! All the power, all the glory, everything you wanted."
Regulus smiled at her again, that same mirthless half smile. She shuddered. "That's just it, Narcissa. I don't want it- no, I can't want it- anymore. Things...things have changed, Cissy."
"What's changed?" She whispered, sitting down again. She put her hand back into Draco's cradle, and the baby grabbed her finger.
"Me." The nineteen-year-old answered, his hand running through his hair again. "I can't deal with it anymore. This isn't what he promised us, Cissy, and you know it! He said the world would be better. He told us that we would eliminate those who were unworthy. But Cissy, it isn't just the unworthy. It's everyone! We're killing everyone. Muggle, Mudblood, Pureblood, it doesn't matter to him! He won't be happy until he's the only one left! He doesn't even care when his most loyal followers die, Cissy. Lucius could die, and it wouldn't matter to him at all. He'd probably say he deserved it."
"Lucius is one of the Dark Lords most loyal followers! Of course he would..."
"He would what? Care? Listen to yourself, Cissy! The Dark Lord doesn't care about Lucius, you, or anyone else. I'm done with this. The killing, the torture, the betrayal. I can't do it anymore."
"He asked you to kill Sirius, didn't he? To prove you're loyalty."
"It's more than that, Cissy." Regulus closed his eyes, and his broad shoulders dropped into a defeated stance. "There's more...complications..."
"Well whatever it is I'm sure Lucius can fix..."
"He had my father killed, Cissy."
Narcissa stared at the now trembling boy. He suddenly looked more than two years younger than herself. He looked so small and so very frightened. "Regulus, there must be some mistake..."
"There was no mistake." Regulus's voice was cold. Emotionless. It sent chills down her spine. "He sent Bellatrix after him. She told me all about it. I guess he said something about the Dark Lord that he didn't take to kindly. All he did was say something, and you know my parents Cissy. They'll say anything, but they won't do anything about it. The Dark Lord saw that as a some kind of treachery. My dad was one of the most pureblooded wizards around, but in the end...in the end that didn't save him. He died, just like everyone else dies."
"That's it, isn't it?" Narcissa whispered, her eyes never leaving the younger boy's face. He wasn't crying, but she knew he wanted to. "The fact that being a pureblood didn't save him from death..."
"It doesn't matter in the end what your past is, does it?" Regulus whispered. "In the end...we all die the same death. I don't know about you, but it's hard for me to buy my mother's 'better-than-them' attitude with that glaring problem in the way."
"You're a blood traitor just like your brother," Narcissa yelled, getting to her feet again.
Regulus's eyes snapped open, and she could see unmasked fury in them. "Better with Sirius than trapped in this hell! Cissy, please," his eyes suddenly softened, became pleading, "you've got to understand. You at least have to understand. We were the babies, you and me. We never had a choice in what happened to us. We always did what we were told. But, Cissy, I don't want to play by their rules anymore. They were never even playing the same game I was. I want to try living for once."
Narcissa said nothing for a few minutes, just sitting down again and stroking her babies hand. "You're right, of course. We always did what we were told, you and I. It made life so much easier. Hasn't it, Regulus?"
Regulus chuckled ironically. "You tell me, Cissy." He was silent for a beat before he whispered. "I never pushed them. Not like Sirius. I liked my limits. I thought I was safe there, but...no where is safe. Not anymore. I think it's time I discover who I am, instead of being what everyone told me I was, don't you?"
Narcissa couldn't bring herself to look at him. A part of her knew he was right, but that was an easily ignored part. "This is suicide, Regulus."
"I know." Silence again, more awkward than the previous two. To Narcissa's surprise, Regulus dropped to one knee in front of her, forcing her to look into his pleading slate eyes that had always made him look younger than he was. "Cissy, come with me. The Dark Lord doesn't know what I know. All he'll know is that I left when I don't show up when he next summons us. He won't come himself, he'll just send someone. We could beat anyone if we worked together. You and I...we were unstoppable when we were young. Cissy, we could even out prank Sirius. Come with me."
Narcissa didn't answer right away. They had been unstoppable when they were young. They constantly got themselves into trouble with their older siblings, but their parents had always refused to believe the little ones could have done such a thing. They had been able to defend themselves from all the horrible punishments their siblings could come up with. As long as they were together, they were untouchable. She looked down at her baby.
"Do it for Draco," Regulus whispered, putting one of his hands over hers. She could feel the roughness of his palm against its smooth back. "Do you want him to grow up in a world like this, Cissy? A world of darkness, death, and fear? He'll be like me, you know. Doing what's expected of him. He will be a Death Eater, but...but if we can stop him, Cissy. We could end this, end all of this, right now. Come with me...please..."
Narcissa said nothing, just watched her baby breathe. She gently stroked his downy blond hair with one finger. She couldn't. There was to much to lose. She looked at her younger cousin sadly. "I'll miss you, Pretty Cub," she said, using her special pet name for him.
With a sigh, Regulus stood up. "You should forget everything I told you."
In truth, she already had as she understood none of it. "I will. I'm sorry, Regulus."
"I know. I'll miss you, Cissy."
"I have to report this, you know. If the Dark Lord were to find out..."
"I know. Just tell him that I told you I was leaving. Don't tell him why. He doesn't know I know about...he doesn't know I've been here. I know it's a risk, Cissy, but give me a head start. One day, that's all I ask of you. Please?"
Narcissa bit her bottom lip, but nodded. "I will, I promise."
Regulus smiled his thanks, and walked toward the door. He paused as he opened it. "Cissy?"
"Yes?" She hoped he'd changed his mind even as she berated herself for hoping something so foolish.
"Don't tell Sirius. No matter what. I don't want him thinking there was something he could have done. I'm going to die, but don't let him find out how. Just tell him...tell him that I decided to try defying gravity." Without waiting for her promise, Regulus was gone.
That was not the last time she'd seen him. The Dark Lord had sent her with Bellatrix and Severus to kill him. He hadn't begged for his life, but stood tall. A true Black, even in death. It was Bellatrix who killed him with Crucio. She said someone as treacherous as Regulus deserved a death of pain. He hadn't given her the satisfaction of even screaming.
Two silver tears fell from Narcissa's eyes, landing on her pale hands. She could not bare to think of Regulus as he died, and she certainly did not want her little Draco to suffer the same fate. She tried to protect him, but it was out of her hands now.
"Regulus," she whispered, pulling the book away from her chest so she was addressing the photo, "if you can hear me...please protect him. You were right. You were always right, but please...if you can...let no harm befall him..."
There was no response to her maternal plea, except the rain on the roof and a rush of cold autumn wind.