The Million Dollar Question

Prologue: June 6th 1994 (End of Harry's 3rd year)

Two men stood in a darkly lit hallway in Hogwarts on the night of June 6th. They were standing in absolute silence except for the sound of their breath, when suddenly one man speaks. "Cornelius, I think that you should give Sirius Black some veritaserum to prove that it's really him and to check whether he killed Peter Pettigrew and those twelve muggles all those years ago," said the Headmaster of Hogwarts to the Minister of Magic. This request was met with shock from the Minister, but the more he thought on, the more he knew that he couldn't say no to the headmaster without starting a feud. He also knew that he didn't want this man as his enemy which is why he made Dolores make a statement taking back her legislation on werewolves. He sighed. There was only one way to not make this man his enemy, but he didn't want to do it.

"I don't know Albus, but if you insist please ask Severus to bring us some," Minister Fudge answered. The professor smiled, he knew that the minister could not say no to him and he had used that as his advantage.

"I have already asked Severus to bring us some," replied Professor Dumbledore. "Ah, here he is now." He motioned to the man walking up the corridor wearing black robes. Severus was walking towards the two men at a brisk pace; in his hand he carried a small vial of veritaserum. Severus nodded to the two men who walked into step with him. They walked towards Sirius Black's holding room where three dementors stood guard. Both of the professors spoke the words, "Expecto Patronum" to bring forth their patroni to ward them against the dementors. The three men walked into the room where Sirius sat bond magically to a chair. Albus held out his hand to Severus for the potion. Albus then administered one drop to himself.

Severus knew what he was doing, so he asked Albus two questions, "What is your full name and are you in love with Minerva McGonagall?"

Albus scowled at Severus. He knew two things. One that Albus was in love with Minerva and two he would lie through his teeth until the day he died unless under this particular potion. "My full name is Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore and I am in love with Minerva McGonagall." Severus and Sirius smirked at this. Severus then handed the headmaster the antidote. Albus then said, "That was cold, Severus, very cold." Severus just smirked again.

"It was the only piece of information that you would only reveal under the serum and we both know it." He responded, still smirking.

Albus narrowed his eyes, "Well now that we are positive the serum works," his eyes narrowed further, "Shall we administer some to Sirius." Sirius's eyes widened and he broke into a smile.

"I would down the entire bottle if it will prove my innocence." Sirius said, his smile growing still. Albus' eyes sparkled and he grinned. He then put three drops on Sirius's tongue.

Albus and the minister then exchanged a side glance and Cornelius nodded for Albus to beginning the questioning. "Are you Sirius Black, the son of Walburga and Orion Black?"

"'Yes I am," replied the prisoner.

"Were you the secret-keeper for James and Lily Potter's house in Godric's Hallow?"

"No I was not." The minister gasped, the potions professor continued to look indifferent, and the headmaster smiled.

"Who was James and Lily's secret-keeper?"

"Peter Pettigrew," Sirius growled out.

"Did you kill Peter?"

"No I did not."

"Is he dead?"

"No he is not," Sirius roared.

"Where has he been living for the past twelve years?"

"With the Weasleys." The minister again looked shocked.

"How has he done this?"

"He lived in his animagus form."

"What is his form and how did he become one?"

"He is a rat, and he became one with the help of James and me in fifth year."

"Were you ever a deatheater?"

"No I was not." No way in hell, he thought.

"I think we are done here unless you have more questions Cornelius," the headmaster looked to the minister.

"No I have no more questions, but I would like to say a few things," the minister sighed. "First, I would like to apologize for the misunderstanding that made you stay in Azkaban for twelve years and I would also like you are cleared of all charges, the false charges having to do with Lily and James Potter and Peter Pettigrew, but I charge you with being an illegal animagus, but seeing as how you've already served twelve years for false charges we will not put you back in prison as long as you register. Oh, but I do have one question: why did you break into the school twice?"

Sirius smiled, "To kill that bastard Pettigrew, of course."