Author's Notes: Written for Lady Eleanor Boleyn's "Birthdays" Challenge on xoxLewrahxox's Bellatrix Lestrange: The Dark Lord's Most Faithful forum.
Your challenge for the next two weeks is to write a story involving one or more Harry Potter Characters and a Birthday Celebration of some sort!
Rodolphus had kept count of the days since they were imprisoned. It was the only thing he had to do to keep himself close to sanity – work out exactly what day of the week, of the month, of the year, it was.
In the depths of the first winter he spent in prison, as the sun set outside his window and he scratched the day into the ground with a stone, Rodolphus heard a quiet noise from the cell next to his. Dragging himself over and peering through the gloom, through the iron bars that separated his cell and his brother's, he whispered, "Rab? What's wrong?"
"N- Nothing." Rabastan's voice was soft, weak and shaky.
"Don't tell me that. You're crying."
"I am not."
"Yes you are." Rodolphus extended one arm through the bars to grasp his younger brother's wrist. "Tell me why."
Rabastan turned to face him, wiping muddy tears from his cheeks. "I- I was watching you… keeping track of the days… and… and…"
"It's – it's nothing," Rabastan murmured, swallowing hard and managing a small, watery smile. "Just… it's my birthday today."
"Oh…" Rodolphus looked at the ground, where his careful tally of the days was, then at his brother. "Rab, I forgot, I'm sorry–"
"I don't blame you," Rabastan said quickly. "I just didn't expect to be spending my twenty fifth birthday in Azkaban…"
Rodolphus edged up close against the bars and slid his arms through as far as they would go, trying to hug his brother. Rabastan sniffed slightly, clinging to Rodolphus through the bars.
"It's going to be okay," Rodolphus whispered. "I'm sure that by your twenty sixth birthday, the Dark Lord will have come for us…"
"You really think so?" asked Rabastan.
No. He's never going to come for us.