1994-07-09: Family Reunions


Tonks_icon.gif Sirius_icon.gif

Scene Title Family Reunions
Synopsis Sirius keeps his word on explaining things to Tonks
Date July 09, 1994
Watch For Oxymorons
Chronology Tonks is let in on her cousin's innocence
Logger Birdman of Azkaban

The Caves Outside of Hogsmeade

A few days after the meeting in Dumbledore's office, a simple note was sent to Tonks via owl. It simply said, 'Saturday. Edge of Hogsmeade, follow the black dog.' The message was cryptic on purpose and with good reason. Sure enough when Saturday comes along, at the edge of the village, there's a rather large black dog sitting off the side of the road. While the dog looks normal enough, he appears to be waiting for something or someone. Or maybe the dog is just bored and lounging around.

You know, that entire meeting was surreal. She still needs to make a point to speak with Reverie and let her know that Lupin isn't going to go all bad-wizard on her. More or less. She'd still have her suspicions but after both her mentor and her former Headmaster told her it's okay, well…
And how much you want to bet Ol' Mad-eye got an earful and a half after she returned to her office? It's not often she lets out the ol' Psycho-Black side, but he probably got the brunt of it that day.
Still,she arrives on time. The note has thus been burned (again, owing to the healthy paranoia she has, as opposed to Moody's unhealthy paranoia, ha hah). She meanders from the town itself, ambling along this road. It's kind of creepy, what with the shrieking shack rumors and all. "Look for the dog, look for the do -" Tonks' mumbling stops when, hey, there's a big black dog in serious (ha hah) need of a bath. She doesn't really /like/ dogs…She stops a good distance away and stuffs her hands in her oversized pockets. "So, what now?" Does she have to give it a treat to make it go?

When Tonks shows up, the dog lets out a bark before he gets up and trots over to her. He sniffs at the witch for a few moments, then seems satisfied, taking full advantage of the heightened senses this form gives him. Yet, as if realizing this witch doesn't care for dogs, he makes a point to shake out his dirty fur in her direction before barking once more, and leading off towards the hills.

And the dog comes over. "Hey there," she'll attempt to be cordial, even holding out her hand - that is until she's got dirty fur being shaken in her direction. "UGh!" So, now she's grumbling, but following the dog. It's a bit of a huffy walk, but she's following, right?

The dog could be smiling, but it's hard to tell. Dogs typically look happy anyway! Wisely, the dog doesn't waste further time, although the temptation is strong to do so. He leads Tonks away from Hogsmeade and into the woods and afterwards the caves beyond. The trip feels longer than it really is, but once safely away from the village and in seclusion, the dog transforms. By now, Sirius trusts that Tonks isn't going to call in her fellow Aurors. (Yet.) "I apologize for the cryptic message, but I'm sure you can understand why."

No, there's no calling the Aurors on him. she'll take Dumbledore's word on it. Still, after the long walk from Hogsmeade, the last thing shew as expecting out of the dog was for it to be her cousin. There's a squeak and a step back when he changes, but little else in the way of reaction. Narrowing her eyes for a moment, she points, "So.. that's how you've been evading capture…" She doesn't quite piece together that the form was vital in his escape.

A smile breaks across his face for a few moments, "Among other methods, yes. I never imagined it would become this necessary." He settles down on a rock and gestures for Tonks to pull up one as well. "Have a seat in my parlor, I told you I would give you an explanation. Might as well get as comfortable as possible."

There's a glance behind her before she settles down on a rock. She's mindful to pull her wand out first and stash it in another pocket before doing so. Wouldn't do at all to have that either break or go off. Fortunately for Sirius, she seems attentive, and there's no cheeky commentary forthcoming.

Or lose a buttock. Basic wand safety m'dear. Sirius settles in and stares across at Tonks for a few moments before he starts. "I'll try to make this as short as possible, but it started back in school." He raises a hand and drags it through his hair. "James and I, we worked out early on that Remus was a werewolf. Peter was slower on the uptake. Not the sharpest of our group, Peter. We, that is, James and I, decided we would become animagi, so that Remus wouldn't be alone. We had to help Peter quite a bit, took us a few years, but we managed." This is relevant, yes.

Haha, what kid in her generation doesn't stash wands in their back pockets? "Peter…Pettigrew?" She's jsut wanting confirmation. There's also this little thing where she doesn't look surprised at the revelation that Lupin's a werewolf. But otherwise, she simply nods. "You're unregistered." Is that a slight 'tsk' in her tone?

"We were students, fully recognizing the laws we were breaking and for good reason. This is also why we are not on the Animagus registry. It was more important to us that Remus realize that he wasn't alone, he had friends to stand by him." Sirius glances away, running a hand through his hair again, looking a bit distracted. "The one and the same," he says, confirming that he's referring to Pettigrew, not wanting to say his name more than necessary. "After school when we worked with Dumbledore against Voldemort, James and Lily were targeted as we all know. That last year, I was their Secret Keeper." A growl starts to form in his words. "I.. should have realized Peter was weak, he was an easy target, easy to turn, but he was our friend."

The annoyance in Tonks' face seems to fade as Sirius weaves his tale. There's a nod here and there about the animagi and the werewolves and this that and the other, but as likely predicted, her expression seems most interested in the whole secret-keeper thing. And don't mind the hiss-wince there. Not used to actually hearing that name being said outloud and all.

Sirius's hands twist into fists in an almost convulsive manner as he continues. "I was always the more likely choice for getting to James." The smile he gives here is bitter and hard. "So. I suggested Peter and I trade places. I would draw attention away, who would suspect Peter?" He starts to laugh now, harsh and hollow. "I don't know how long he had been working with Voldemort, how long he had been passing secrets on. The night they were murdered, I checked on Peter, I had a feeling something was wrong. Peter wasn't home, so I went to the Potter's home to find it destroyed and Hagrid taking Harry. I took it upon myself to go after Peter. It would have taken too long to take any other action. Only Remus and I now knew that Peter could turn into a rat. He could have been anywhere." Tonks's reaction to hearing You Know Who's name spoken aloud goes ignored.

Another wince, and a grumble, but she's too interested in hearing how things truly went to ask sirius to /stop/ with the Voldemort utterances. Still, she frowns here. Pettigrew was the one that betrayed the potters? Her mouth opens as if she was going to comment, but she thinks twice about it. Let him finish, first.

"When I caught up with him, I never had a chance to act first. He moved faster than I ever could have imagined. He shouted his accusation, faked his death with the explosion and took off to the sewers with the other rats." Sirius stops here, because the rest as they say, is history. Unable to sit still, he gets up and paces, even fidgeting, as if suddenly wanting to move. To get on with the hunt for the rat.

Well, that answers that, as her question was going to be about Peter being dead and all. "So, he betrayed the Potters, caused a diversion so that he could get away, and framed you for the entire mess." She sighs and leans back a little, careful not to tip over (for once) and she rubs her knees a bit. "Bet it doesn't help he was decorated for that bit, eh?" She frowns a bit and digs in her pocket, "Oi, stop pacing. Making me nervous." She'll fling something at him, and should he catch it, it'll be a chocolate frog. Yes, Tonks keeps sweets on demand, go fig.

"In a nutshell, yes. While I was rotting, he was hiding with a wizarding family." Sirius growls, but does stop pacing. Already on edge, his reflexes are quick enough to catch the tossed frog. He looks down at the sweet, as if never having seen a chocolate frog before. "As for my escape, when Fudge visited Azkaban, how kind of him I might say.. the paper he had, showed a family on vacation in Egypt, and there was a rat on a boy's shoulder. A rat missing a toe. I knew it was Peter. That's why I escaped. I had to stop him now that I knew where he was, what he was capable of doing." He still hasn't looked up from his examination of the chocolate. "I never murdered those muggles or Peter. I only wanted to kill Peter, and I gladly would have done so with no regrets."

Deciding a bit of chocolate's a good idea, she pulls another out of her pocket and works on opening it. The card inside isn't even looked at as she lets the frog have it's 'one good jump' before she catches it in midair. Waiting for it to stop wiggling she thinks back. "Wait… the Weasleys were in Egypt recently." And were in the Prophet… "Were they the ones?" Ah, there, magic-induced wiggling done, she bites into the frog. Still chewing she mumbles, "So what happened then? You 'scaped obviously."

Sirius looks at Tonks, dragging his gaze from the as of yet, unopened chocolate. There's a distant expression on his face, as if surprised she's there. He then nods to affirm it was the Weasley family. "I got out. I don't need to tell you about Dementors, and how it was easy to slip past them as a dog. I had no happy thoughts for them to take from me, so I stayed sane." Relatively speaking that is. "After that, I found Harry, got a glimpse of him. How much like his father, he is," is stated wistfully. "Throughout the year, I kept getting into Hogwarts, trying to get Peter. We almost had him, but he got away again."

Haha, a sane Black—that's an oxymoron. Still munching away on her chocolate, which seems like a good thing to do while listening to grim over there speak. "what happened with that?" Excuse her, talking with food in her mouth.

Sirius turns the frog over in his fingers, not really looking at it now. "It was an utter disaster," he mutters. "Full moon that night, the Dementors almost had me, but for Harry and his friends. They believe Remus and I. 'Course things wouldn't have been easy you know. Snape interfered, Remus and his furry little problem." As he talks, he's not really looking at anything, "Harry, they got a hippogriff and helped me escape. I've been hiding since." Of course, he's skirting the details, just the basics alone are so fantastic. Either now he's weary of talking and looking back, or he just wants something else to do, he finally opens the chocolate up. Not letting the frog get in its jump, he's already eating it.

"I've got more if you want. It's not a real meal, but…" Tonks turns out her pockets, and there's all sorts of stuff. "Feel free." Her tone's a bit softer than it was earlier, and certainly lacks the accusing tone she'd been speaking to him ever since they'd reacquainted in Dumbledore's office. She tries to piece together what happened from the scattered details, but she then gives up. The whole picture isn't needed. It's certainly a fantastic story—but the pieces do fit. Somehow. "And Pettigrew got away again…?" She shakes her head, with a slight frown. Another frog is picked up from the pocket-dumpings and opened. She's quiet this time, as she chews, thinking. "Of course, you're still the Ministry's favorite scapegoat…"

"Correct," Sirius says in a quiet voice once he's finished off the frog. A shrug is given as he settles back down onto the rock, "Crouch never gave me a trial, I don't expect a fair shake now." The offer of more snacks is waved off as he appears ready to fidget further. "Tell me about your mother? Your father? How have they been?" Distractions are good.

A note's made to get him a real meal. "This is where you've been staying?" she wants as confirmation. she might have to hand deliver something. "Fudge probably won't either." Anyway, yeah, distractions. A brow arches at her cousin. "Well, she's fine. Don't know if I'm going to tell her this bit or not." She waves a hand at Mr. Undesirable No. 1 before her. "Probably won't. It'll be common practice to monitor the close relatives of the wanted. Still…" She rubs her chin. "That whole mess broke her heart, y'know. She was certain, that out of all of her family, you were good stock." She twists the wrapper a bit, "She was right, apparently, but she won't be able to know that for a while likely."
She takes a deep breath and answers the question more thoroughly. "Well, she's not entirely keen on my career choice. But Dad's pretty laid back about it." She thinks for a moment, "They're both pretty much how you left them, I reckon."

"More or less. I left the country for a bit, but when news of the Death Eaters reached me, I came back. Can't stay away hearing news like that. Not when Harry's my priority." The wrapper is crumpled up and stuffed in his pocket as Sirius looks up at the sky. "I was afraid of that. It would be nice to tell her I was innocent at some point, but a good idea to minimize the number of those who know. Crossed my mind a fair number of times about how she must have taken the news." He sounds regretful, but just of what is open for debate. "Good.. good. Your father's a good bloke." There's a brief smile, "Andromeda's just worried about you, I'd wager. Other than that, I'm sure she's proud of you."

Tonks leans forward, though with the motion she actually slips off her rock. there's a squeak, and she rubs her bottom, but she otherwise just sits on the cave floor. She probably found it safer to do so. Pulling her knees up and resting her arms on it, she considers. It's still too much to digest right now, which explains a lot of her subdued mannerisms right now. "OH, I know. Her only daughter and all that…" She rolls her eyes, and it's obvious she's likely been fussed about a lot about the decision. Heaven help her should she get in a row and get injured. She does seemed unsettled by the continued secrecy, family wise, of Sirius' innocence, but it's not commented on. As an Auror, she would know what the loops would be to monitor him. "But…I wanted to do this because I wanted to some good, and all." She tilts her head looking towards the cave's roof, "That and the adventure sounded great."

Sirius glances across at Tonks, a brow raising in amusement, "Nice to see some things just don't change. You were always such a clumsy child. Should have spoiled you more." Although, being a runaway, he was depending upon the gold from his uncle and the kindness of the Potter's. He finally seems to relax, even laughing a little. "After being locked up for twelve years? I actually felt alive again. Oh.. one more thing." He rolls up his left sleeve, to show that there is in fact, no sign of the Dark Mark on his arm. "Just in case you needed further proof."

She barks a laugh, the first she's done so in his presence. "I was horrible at my Stealth training 'cause of it. Still managed to pass. Did you see who I got teamed up with though? Out of all the Aurors…" She gets Mad-Eye Moody. She speaks affectionately though. Rough he may be, Tonks holds him in high regard. He rolls up his sleeve and she regards the bare forearm scrutinizingly. "You could be using a charm, you know." Still, she lifts a hand. "Both Professor Dumbledore and Mad-Eye vouched for you. Ifyou've managed to fool /them/…"

Sirius smiles as he rolls down his sleeve, "You had no better person to train with. Worked with Mad-eye a bit myself. Paranoid, yes, but he's good." Another shrug, "I could be," he says dismissively. "Dumbledore may not have known we were studying to become animagi under his nose, but it's rather difficult to fool the man. I don't think anyone's ever succeeded, or tried."

"I trust Mad-eye." She chuckles, "That's what Remus had said, too." About Mad-eye. She plucks at the ground. "Pettigrew escaped you said? Where do you think he's gone?"

Sirius chuckles as well. "You can trust Remus too, although I'm rather biased about it." He nods his head, "Now that he's been found out, he probably ran back to Voldemort. To someone who can protect him from us."

A wane grin is given about Remus, "I'm sure I can. Don't know what to think of him otherwise." Outside of the fact the man's quiet, unassuming. Probably something he'd prefer given what he is. She frowns though. "He didn't…" Die, that is. Voldemort.

"Dumbledore didn't think so, and neither do I. He's still out there somewhere." Sirius pushes to his feet and stands, no longer content to sit further. "Which is why we should be ready. Constant vigilance, eh?"

Well, that certainly puts a spin on things. The question, the specific wording, that was asked by Remus makes sense. Tonks lifts her hand up to her chin, frowning slightly. She seems to be in thought, simply being quiet. Then, "If I can help…"

Sirius smiles fondly at his cousin, "That's why Dumbledore invited you in. Start feeling out for allies. We lost a good number of allies first time around. I'm not letting my fugitive status stop me from trying to help again. I'll do what I can. Which is why I'm in the area, and not going to leave. I need to stay close by for Harry and for Dumbledore."

A brow quirks. "And what do I do if I think I've found someone worthwhile?" fortunately for her, as a girl, she can gossip her way into people's business. She then frowns for a moment at the mention of Sirius being in the area. "They need to be looking for you elsewhere. You'll need to be careful not to be spotted."

"Mention them to myself, Mad-eye or Remus. We'll need to make sure we can trust them. Mad-eye as you heard, has already recruited Kingsley. Right now, all we're doing is staying quiet, and our ears open for anything we may hear." Since there's no proof of Voldemort's return, or any sign of the wizard. Sirius smiles down at Tonks before lifting his gaze upwards to the sky. "I know. Every now and then however, I'll let myself be seen by a muggle or two, far from here. Perhaps even on the Continent. I have my ways of getting around."

"You think highly of him, don't you?" Tonks asks once Remus' name's mentioned. It's just weird, she finds. Trusting a /werewolf/. She's not against it, but well… it could be she's just paranoid. AS for Sirius Sightings… "WEll, have you thought about using a decoy?"

"I trust him implicitly and I regret ever having second thoughts in regards to his allegiance," Sirius states, his tone and expression quite sober as he seems to be daring Tonks to say otherwise about him. He doesn't seem to lighten up as Tonks asks her question, if possible, his expression is even graver as he seems to be catching on. "No."

She's silent on teh topic of Remus, though her expression seems to live up to the dare. A /werewolf/, though! But the fact she's not ran screaming at him, and the fact that she was well aware of what he was during the meeting and he spoke of it openly without reaction from her does speak that she's giving him the benefit of the doubt. As for the other, "Just give it a thought," Tonks says. "My job is far more dangerous than playing dress up for family."

"Precisely, and you won't be thanking me for the added pressure," Sirius says in a stern manner. "I'll create my own diversions, if anyone knew you were in contact with me as it is…" He leaves the rest unsaid. Besides, it's his nature to get out, handle things on his own. Plus the additional danger, the sheer recklessness of it all.

There's still fight left in her, but she abandons it. For now. "IF you say so," Neener. She's tough dammit! Tonks decides the floor's too hard for her delicate bum, so she pushes to her feet, dusting things off. "THey won't know. I've been pretty pissed at your escape enough that it'll be a far thought for a while."

Sirius smiles in an amused manner at Tonks. "I can imagine. I'm not sorry about the poster. I thought it was a bit funny." Cracked in the head, he is. So no apologies. "You better get back before you have to come up with some complicated story about being off and away. I'll be keeping my nose to the ground and careful about not being seen, or rather, being seen by the right parties."

"I'll just tell them the truth," Tonks states fixing her robes. Before Sirius panics, "I was investigating leads." She offers him a grin. She toes the sweets. "I'll try to get you a real meal, okay?"

Sirius laughs easily. "Fair enough," he says with a spread of his hands. "Don't worry about. I'm getting on fairly well. There's a rather nice witch down in the village you see," he adds the last by giving a rather incorrigible smile. One that seems to take a few years away from him.

There's a groan and she rubs her face. "Well, I'd best be getting along," Tonks gives him a wane smile. No hug, yet, not until she's digested everything! "Take care of yourself, Sirius. Keep in touch." This is said as she moves to the exit. She tosses over her shoulder, "But not too much." And with that, she'll make her leave.

Sirius doesn't seem concerned at the lack of a good ol' family hug. A bark-life laugh escapes at Tonks's groan. "I'll be in touch, and will be in an out of Hogsmeade until start of term. Then I'll be staying put." To see his cousin off, he takes the form of the great black dog once more to trot after her.

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