Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.
By Silver Sailor Ganymede
Before Hogwarts I wanted to be just like Sirius. He was smart, cunning and could always get out of trouble with the slightest effort.
I was positive that he would be in Slytherin, just like mother and father and everyone else in the House of Black. I envied Sirius; I was sure he would be in Slytherin as he was everything Slytherin symbolised; he was smart, ambitious, cunning, witty and everything else besides. I feared that I would end up in Ravenclaw, because Slytherin just didn't seem to fit me. But you must remember that this, of course, was before Hogwarts.
So imagine my shock when my dear older brother, the one whom everyone was sure would be a Slytherin, ended up in Gryffindor. Had he been in Ravenclaw instead of Slytherin, then the surprise wouldn't have been that big, but Gryffindor? He was a Black, and we just didn't end up in Hufflepuff or Gryffindor.
I remember my parents' reactions when they found out what House Sirius had been sorted in to. My father was furious and went silent as he always did when he was in an extremely bad mood: but even his reaction was nothing compared to my mother's. Mother shrieked, ranted on and on that he was no Black. She eventually became so mad that she burned his name from the family tree. Her eldest son was a Gryffindor? She would be shamed within the aristocratic pureblood circles, for no true pureblood was a member of that House.
When Sirius came back for the summer holidays he and my parents would argue almost endlessly, for they saw him as a disappointment and nothing more, no matter that he'd scored third in the year in the exams.
When I turned eleven, my parents almost sent me to Durmstrang because they feared that I too would become a shame to the name of Black. However, their fears were unfounded, as were mine. I was sorted into Slytherin, not because I begged the Hat to put me there, but because it said that I was everything that Slytherin symbolised.
Sirius hated me after that: he said that I was weak-willed and only lived to do what Mother and Father told me to do. He said that I was a fool to wish to be in Slytherin, that I was going to end up joining the Dark Lord, just like our idiot father.
I never told Sirius that I was placed in Slytherin because the Hat wanted me in Slytherin. I never told Sirius that I too felt that father was a fool and Voldemort also, but I would have probably been killed had I expressed my true opinion.
But still, when Sirius had been disowned and I had graduated, Father expected me to join the Dark Lord: and I, though it went completely against all that I believed in, followed my Father's wishes and became a Death Eater.
Sirius said that I was a coward and that I should just have left like he had. But I wasn't like Sirius, I never was; he was his own person, no one could tell him what to do, whereas I felt that I had to follow my parent's wishes lest I be disowned.
But then I left the Dark Lord's ranks. I stole one of his Horcruxes and made him weaker. I was killed for that, yes, but it was worth it. I showed my family what I truly thought for the first, and last, time in my life.
Sirius too sacrificed his life for his beliefs, that much we had in common.
The one thing that I know realise, after my death, is that my brother and I were in different Houses, that we thought completely differently, that I remained a Black and he did not, however, despite all these initial differences, Sirius and I were exactly the same. We both eventually stood up for our beliefs. We both defied our parents in the end. We were both thought to be something that we were not.
Before Hogwarts I wanted to be just like Sirius; I knew I wasn't. During Hogwarts, I wanted to be nothing like Sirius; I knew I wasn't. After Hogwarts, I was sure that I was nothing like Sirius; I was wrong. No matter how different we seemed, Sirius and I were, really, exactly the same.