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You're Free Now

By Linnadhiel

Other

...

Sirius woke slowly. He could feel rays of sunshine warming his left cheek, the birds were singing, and his could vaguely hear the rustle of trees in the wind.

This confused him. Grimauld Place had no trees around it. The house was in the middle of London.

Then why could he hear trees? He wondered, and groaned in frustration, his groggy mind unwilling to actually come up with an explanation.

Sirius buried himself deeper into the blankets. Shuffling around, he stilled when he bumped into another body. The extra body reached out to him and wrapped it's arms around him.
As James nuzzled into Sirius' neck, the events of the day before came rushing back to him.

He remembered his mother, that horrid evil bitch. He remembered her casting that Unforgivable on him, for his rebellion that day. The only thing he remembered from being under that curse, was how much he had screamed. And then how much his throat had hurt afterwards.

He remembered Regulus' horrified, frightened face.

When his mother, Walburga, he reminded himself; she was no longer his mother, had released him from her torture, he had been consumed by blind hatred. He had been so angry. And in pain. His muscles had screamed at him when he had struggled to his feet. He may have been sorted into Gryffindore, but he knew when he'd had enough. Being brave meant nothing if it got him killed. He'd had enough now, this had been the final straw.

He'd marched out of the dark dinning room, leaped up the stairs three at a time, threw his bedroom door open and stuffed everything he owned into his magical extended backpack. Not forgetting his owl Butters. He'd slammed his door shut and stormed down the three sets of stairs to get the the fireplace.

He'd shoved passed his screeching mother and breezed past his silent brother, grabbed a handful of Floo powder and quickly and clearly annunciated the name of the Potter's residence.

The Potter's Floo connected fireplace was in their sitting room, a room that was always occupied in the evenings. The Potter's had been shocked at his sudden appearance, and very concerned about the state he had been in. James had been at his side as soon as he'd realised who he was, and he hadn't left Sirius' side since. He'd stayed right next to him on the sofa, as Mrs Potter fussed over Sirius, and fed him potions that helped with his screaming muscles almost immediately. James had sat next to him, hand clenched tightly in Sirius' as he explained what had happened.

James had been his brother in all but blood for a long time. He'd been the light shinning in on the dark of his home life. And now, after he'd explained that his mother had undoubtedly blasted him off the family tree, the Potter family had pretty much said they were adopting him.

James nor Sirius had to even ask about it, the Potter's had just done it. Said that they were happy to take him in and considered him their second son. James had given him a bright smile, and Sirius tried very hard to hide the tears gathering in his eyes.

James didn't say anything about it, but Sirius knew he'd noticed. But instead of teasing him about it, he'd just pulled at Sirius' arm and said that they should go to bed, that Sirius could share with him.

James was a cuddler. Sirius knew this fact before that moment, but he was reminded again by James' arms around his waist and his nose in Sirius' dark strands. James' hair was tickling his nose. It made it itch. He turned his head so that his cheek rested on James' hair. That was better.

Everything felt better now. He was free. He was loved. It felt nice, he mused. This is nice too, he added, savouring the cozy human contact. It wasn't too hot in the bed either, he noticed, despite the sun on his face coming though a gap in the curtain that showed that the sun definitely was out.

A grin spread across Sirius' mouth. He was getting bored. James was still fast asleep, curled up to his best friend's, brother's, frame. Sirius started slowly, lightly, scraping a finger down James' side, over his ribs. James startled awake, squeaking in horror. Sirius was laughing. He laughed and laughed, probably more than James, despite James being the one being tickled to death. It felt nice. He felt lighter.

Some time later, the two lay next to each other, giggling. The pillows were on the floor, only half of the duvet had stayed on the bed with them and Sirius' hair was a knotted mess. Even more than when he'd woken.

“What time is it Prongs?” He asked when they'd both stopped giggling. James let out a groan into the bed, mumbling something illegible into the sheets. “What was that, Prongies?”
James lifted his face from the bed just enough for Sirius to here him grumble, “There's a clock on the night stand, find out yourself, Padfoot.” before he planted his face back into the mattress.
“Cooome ooooon, Prongs. Don't be a mope! It's a brand new day, a glorious day of sun and fun!” Sirius giggled, sitting up slightly and started to poke James in the side again. James flinched. “It's perfect weather for flying James! Flying! I thought you liked flying.” James grumbled, but turned himself over, looking at Sirius' face with his bright mischievous eyes and excited grin, and he sighed.

“Fiiiine.”

“Yaaaay!” He rolled his eyes at Sirius as he hopped out of bed with energy that only a dog could have after just waking up. He let out a grunt when Sirius threw both pillows at his face.

“ It's half eleven, Jamesies!” Sirius exclaimed in a sing song manner. “ Up you get!”

James watched as Sirius rummaged through one of his drawers.

“You better not be stealing any of my cloths, Padfoot!” He warned, well aware that Sirius was perfectly likely to do so anyway.

“No worries Prongs! I'm just stealing a pair of socks! All mine have holes in.” James sighed in resignation as he swung his legs over the edge of the bed.
The two changed quickly, but Sirius' shoulder length hair had been tangled to the extreme, and it'd taken a good ten minutes to comb and brush the dark strands to its usual softness.

They'd then trooped downstairs, stomachs rumbling loudly. Mrs Potter was stood at the stove, frying bacon and bread. She was a woman of average height, had that slender form that seemed to run with the family, her light hair had few signs of greying, but her face was gently wrinkled with smile lines. She gave them a cheerful smile, and gestured for them to come sit at the table.

“Morning boys! We all had a bit of a sleep in today, so we're just going to have a cooked brunch, sound good?” Sirius stood back up to give her a hug, grinning from ear to ear.

“Anything you've cooked is a joy, ma'am.” He gave her a wink, she flushed at the praise and gave a little chuckle.

“You are a right charmer dear.” She patted his hand. “ And it's just Dorea, love. No need for any formalities here now, is there.”
Sirius gave her another hug before heading back to his seat next to James, who was slightly more awake.
“Do you boys want any tea?” She asked. They both replied in the affirmative.

Charlus Potter came and joined them a few minutes later, Daily Prophet in hand. He was a cheerful man, in his late sixties. His jet black messy Potter hair was flecked with grey, and like his wife, his ageing face was wrinkled with smile lines. He'd sat down on the side of the table next to James, and settled in to read the paper. When Mrs Potter started serving food he place the papers down, and started making conversation.

“What are you two boys up to today then?”

“Sirius stop, eat your own food!” Sirius was trying to steal James' sausages, James was poking his hand with a fork in an attempt to keep his sausages safe. “ I don't know Dad, Sirius did mention something about flying earlier.”

“Uh huh. And I need to write to Remus and Peter to tell them that I'm going to be staying here for the rest of the summer! Knowing Peter, he'd somehow manage to send a letter to Grimmauld Place rather than to me.” Sirius rolled his eyes in fondness at his friend.

“ It is a perfect day for flying, I must say.” Mr Potter concurred, taking a sip of tea from his red mug.

“What do you say then, Prongies? We finish this lovely meal you're mother's made for us, and then go have a throw about on the good old broomsticks?” He elbowed James in the side, grinning.

“Of course Padfoot!” They devoured their food in record time, and were out the house in less.

The garden shed was a magically extended small building. The extra room was needed for Mr Potters bits and bobs that he liked to collect. James had a pair of broomsticks in a case near enough to the door that they didn't have to go too far into the cluttered room.

Within minutes they were in the air, zooming around and throwing a quaffle between them.

They weren't at this very long before they ended up trying to knock each other off of their broomsticks, but that didn't last very long either, so they settled on racing about and attempting to outdo each others tricks.

Several hours later they came trudging back in when it started raining, soaked and cold, they weren't in the best of moods.

After Sirius had hogged the shower for at least half an hour, which was short for him, he finally gave James access to the shower.

With a towel wrapped around his head and snug in a fluffy dressing gown, Sirius started penning his letter to Remus. He was sure that Remus would have been worried; he hadn't been able to send much out since the start of the summer holidays. And Remus was always one to worry.

Dear Moony

I know, I know. I haven't sent you anything since the start of the summer. It wasn't my fault! I promise! Mother wouldn't allow me to use any of the owls, and she locked Butters in her cage. I'm at James' now, and I'll be staying for the rest of the summer. I'M FREE FROM THAT EVIL BITCH. FINALLY.

The whole family had been super tense since we got back from Hogwarts. The 'Dark Lord' has been busy recently. He's been asking around pureblood families, trying to find anyone willing to join his cause. And obviously, my family would want to join as soon as he offered. Cousin Bella is already happily in the service of the evil bastard, and mother has been telling Reg that he has to join, and that if he didn't she'd been disowning him and blast him off the family tree. I don't think Father is all that sure about the whole thing. I can't really tell with him, though. He doesn't really show what he's thinking till he knows it'd have the best effect. He's very Slytherin that way.

Mother was trying to get me involved with this dark lord guy. I kept on refusing. Mother got very pissed off in the end, after trying to force me into it for at least the fourth time. She ended up casting the cruciatus curse on me. I stormed out after that. I'm alright now, no need for you to worry. Mrs Potter gave me a bunch of potions that helped with everything.

Anyway, the Potters have pretty much adopted me now. James and I had a good day. We went out flying, until it started raining. James is in the shower now.

How has your summer been so far? Hows your fury little problem? I hope it hasn't been too bad without us, has it?

I'm sure I'll see you soon, now that I'm able to actually get out now.

Lots of love

Padfoot

Sirius signed the letter, and started work on a letter to Peter. It was very similar to Remus', except that he had to remind Peter several times not to panic, and that he was at James' now.

He sent Peter's letter off first with Butters, knowing that Peter was the one that could often get overly concerned. Remus was the level headed one, so he wasn't likely to accidentally throw himself out a window in his worry or something.

When James had come out of the shower, Butters had come and gone with Remus' letter, and Sirius had gotten in his pyjamas and promptly fallen asleep, curled up under James' covers, damp hair splayed around him.
James smiled, and quickly changed. He popped downstairs to ask his Mum if she could wake them both from their nap when dinner was ready.

He'd gone back upstairs and fallen asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow, exhausted.


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