a/n : Do not own Harry Potter. Or Sirius Black. Despite my repeated prayers.


Battle lines were drawn in his own house. He had always understood the concept, either you are here or you are there. He was in Gryffindor and that was when the first battle line emerged between him and his family, he had refused to be what they wanted him to be.

Oh look where that got him,and he started chuckling to himself.

Someone heard his quiet laughter, and other prisoners started laughing as well, not knowing why or what they were laughing at.

"We are barking mad, all of us!" someone called out. "I only killed my mother! They threw me to Azkaban for offing the old bat!"
Surely, his mother would be muttering about how she lost her favorite son to death and while the one she pretended didn't exist sat in Azkaban.

"The Dark Lord would reward me! Would reward me beyond all others! I will be his most-"his cousin was cackling from her cell. "-I went to seek him! I am enduring the Dementors for him! And I-"
"And I will kill that bastard Peter Pettigrew when I get out!" Rabastan's voice rang out. "The fuck's information is what has got us here in the first place, I will tear him slowly limb from limb and have him begging for my mercy-"
"Peter Pettigrew is dead!" somebody else called out. "Sirius Black beat us to him-!"
The laughter rang out again, a mad laughter as if it could protect them from Dementors. And Sirius was chuckling too, laughing with people he hated, laughing because he is rotting in the cell with them, laughing with people he vowed he was different from.

You see, Azkaban blurs out those lines, those lines he had drawn so clearly in his youth, the line between red and green, the line between good and evil, because he understood better than ever, the world isn't split into good people and Death Eaters.
"I meant to kill him! I meant to kill that slimy bastard, that rat!" he yelled to no one in particular. "The vermin who tried to save his own stinking skin all these years-!"
"He double crossed the Dark Lord! The slimy coward!" Rolodophus bellow drowned out his yelling. "We went to find him! We alone were faithful! We tortured Frank and Alice Longbottom!"
Bellatrix laugh was gleeful as they all struggled to remember their sadistic pleasure in torturing those Aurors who had dared to challenge the Dark lord, and Sirius snapped back to life, remembering, remembering the lines he had drawn as his laughter closed and he felt sick with himself. He had fought along with Alice and Frank, here he was listening to these insane bigots laugh about the fact they tortured them to insanity. He walked to the small bars of window and watched the sea spray the island as rest of the prisoners laughter died down after each one of them recited their crimes, as if that was the only way they could remember who they were.

You know, you can't really escape being one of them, he had told James. I am going to be a Black throughout my life.
Lily had sat down beside him. We are your family, Padfoot. You know that, don't you?
You are stronger than them, yeah?
James had said quietly as Lily had put him to him sleep. Was he drunk that night?
Stronger. Different..

He clutched the bars tightly for a moment before he released it and transformed into a dog. He curled up in the corner of his cell, and slept.
Lupin was patting the seat beside him. Don't look so surprised. Is it really that hard to believe that I have forgiven you?
It is a lot to forgive, Remus. Are you sure you have thought it through? He was still standing.
Remus was looking at him shrewdly. You need us, Sirius.

Another voice, a small whisper, a woman's voice was close to his ear like the howling wind of the sea and he couldn't quite place her voice. If you ever need me, you know where to find me, right?
As he searched through his robes with his paws, he thought, No no, I don't.

He had forgotten her, he had forgotten a lot of them, he couldn't remember through haze or fog, and the precious little he did, he wanted to keep it close to his wasted chest because, he understood there was a line between and sanity and insanity and he was hovering dangerously on the line, but never quite fallen, because he was Sirius Black, because James is right, he is stronger than them, because living on the edge is what he did best, because he was not just a Black, but the infamous Black family rebel.

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