Regulus picked up his cloak (his real one, not his school cloak) and slid it over his shoulders, rubbing them slightly. It was always colder in the main corridors at night, and it helped to be warm before going out of it. He left the dormitory and started down the hall, taking care to double-check for Filch and Mrs. Norris. Favourite child or not, he would still get Howlers for detentions.
After bounding up to his dorms and quickly pulling a thick sweater over his shoulders, Sirius made his way into the halls he knew his brother would be approaching. He smiled to himself before swiftly looking about him; after all, he was technically not allowed in these corridors at the present time and didn't fancy getting caught. However, Sirius had priorities - he had not spent time with Regulus since arriving at Hogwarts for the term, and he was pleased that they would be doing something together. He shivered lightly, cold blowing through his skin.
"Should have worn another bloody layer," Sirius cursed under his breath. He wrapped his arms around himself before noticing the scrawny figure moving deftly in front of him.
Regulus heard something behind him, and turned around panicked that Filch could've snuck up like that. Seeing it was just Sirius, he visibly eased up, and despite their house difference, he ran up and hugged his brother. "Missed you, Siri."
Sirius smiled inwardly, laughing lightly in his brother's ear. "Missed you too." He squeezed Regulus briefly before pulling back. "Shall we?" Sirius motioned to the kitchens, then glanced back at his brother. "God, yes, of course we shall. Just look at you. So thin, it's like you never eat at all! C'mon now. Fattening up time."
Regulus frowned. "You're no better off, brother dear," he said with a sneer as he tickled the pear. The door now open, they went inside and he motioned to a house-elf that was in dire need of a beheading to go get him some of whatever was made at supper. It returned with a plate of roast chicken and potatoes and a goblet of pumpkin juice. He wasn't fond of juice, but he knew these house elves wouldn't give him wine like Kreacher would, so he resigned himself to drinking it. After a sip he bit his lip in disgust and asked, "Could you possibly get me some tea instead?" He liked tea.
Sirius pushed himself up on a counter, graciously accepting what the house elves offered. He cautiously picked through his food, shooting wary glances at Regulus. After seeing his brother pull a face at his pumpkin juice, Sirius could not help but snort into his own cup. He could near-to read Regulus thoughts, a boy groomed to refined dining. "If you're polite, they'll give you wine." Sirius smirked, motioning to a near house elf. "I understand it's not your job to give us any, but if would please bring us some wine, I would be forever grateful." The house elf scurried off, and Sirius cocked an eyebrow at Regulus, mouth twisted into a smug sneer.
"You ruddy bastard," Regulus laughed. "How did you manage that? I've been kind to them, and they keep telling me I'm too young, so I tried threatening them, and that just made them all sad when I asked them for things."
"Well, for starters, you're used to a house elf that needs to be smacked before doing things because he likes it." The house elf returned, handing Sirius two tall glasses and a bottle of darkest red wine. He idly poured the liquid into both glasses, continuing. "Second, you look about eleven, and I can pass for seventeen. That probably helps me out some." He chuckled lightly, passing Regulus his glass and taking a large gulp of his own.
Regulus grinned. "I haven't looked eleven since I was ten, and you know that. You've just got this idea that I'm still your baby brother and refuse to see me older. It's a mental problem, and you should fix that before it warps you into thinking of doing odd things like stealing the chickens." Nonetheless Regulus graciously accepted the wine, wiping his lips with his sleeve after a careful sip. "So not all house elves enjoy being beaten? Then why do they do it so often, I wonder?"
"Excuse me," Sirius smiled at his brother, resting a careful hand on his shoulder. "You will always be my baby brother, even if I, like... steal chickens." He chuckled lightly, locking eyes with Regulus. After but a moment, he coughed lightly, grasping his wine and taking another drink. "And, no, my dear naive Reggy, not all house elves like being beaten. They just have a terribly guilty conscience that disallows them to do anything wrong without a proper beating. Kreacher, on the other hand, well. He's right gone in the head, so he likes that sort of thing."
Regulus nodded. "He is daft, I'll grant you. I was just under the impression that was normal for them." He ate a bite of the potatoes, thinking that if Sirius weren't there, he would probably apologise to the creatures. As fond as he was of his brother, showing him that he was right was unacceptable. "The food's very good tonight. I mean, it usually is, but it's really good tonight." He realised distraction wasn't the right way to go. "I've started the new classes, and I wanted to tell you about them in person, without any distraction."
Sirius nodded curtly. "Ah, yes. Rather sad how we can't really talk without distraction anymore... " He absently twirled his fork between two fingers. "How are they going? Third year's the year everything new starts up, and you can take special classes..." A clatter of dishes inspired a pause in Sirius' thoughts. "What are you taking, anyway? I know you want to be an, ah, Charmbreaker, yeah? Any of your classes helping you with that?"
"Arithmancy will, and I'm taking Runes for that extra bonus. I'm also taking Care of Magical Creatures, three's enough extra, don't you think? Sure, most people only take two, but I liked the class description and I thought, maybe one for fun alone instead of fun and career, that couldn't hurt." Good grooming or no, he picked up the chicken to eat it, although he did chew and swallow before speaking again. "I love Runes. Arithmancy's kind of difficult, but I do need to show I can do the math portion before I can get to the parts I like. You know how I'm always holding up Dad's cursed stuff and wanting to break the spells? I love old stuff. Not treasure, I think, maybe I'll break them for museums like that one in Italy."
Sirius grinned fondly at his sibling, watching him talk cheerfully about his future and career. The prospect made Sirius vaguely uncomfortable; he had not the foggiest idea what he wanted to do with his life, let alone what he wanted to be. He felt his wide smile falter before catching himself; he was happy that his brother knew where he was going, was on a straight path. Unlike most of his family, he could be confident that Regulus was going to do something positive and avoid the realm of dark arts his family so often seemed to slip into. "I'm very proud of you, Regulus. You're going to do well, I know it."
Regulus shivered. When his parents were proud of him, they were proud of his genetics, but when Sirius said it, it actually meant something. But instead of saying thank you or even what he was thinking, he frowned. "You don't have anything to look forward to, do you? You're just... Waiting for something to come your way. God, no wonder you're Gryffindor. Just pick something you like and go with it. You're brilliant, Siri. I mean, if all else fails, you could be a model, you're good-looking enough." Oh, damn, he thought, it was one thing to forget he was talking outloud with Narcissa, but with Sirius it could mean something else.
He cheered himself, laughing brightly at Regulus. "It's true, I know. I should just pose for all the wizarding magazines, I could even be one of those blokes that people just wank to!" Sirius chuckled before sobering slightly. "I just don't really know what I want to do with myself, you know? I was thinking about doing something in defense against the dark arts," He paused, sighing softly. "But past the fact that it's something I would do to spite mum, it's not something I really enjoy. But you know, that doesn't mean I don't have anything to look forward to. Hogsmeade, for instance, this weekend. Now that is something to look forward to." He grinned, brushing stray hair out of his face. "Say, I know that you probably hate been seen anywhere with me by virtue of the fact that I am the 'blood traitor' Black and am in Gryffindor, but," Sirius muttered to himself before catching Regulus' eyes. "You wouldn't fancy going to Hogsmeade with me, would you?"
Regulus didn't know if Sirius could see the way his back muscles stiffened when he joked about working in pornography. He never thought of Sirius that way; he found it easier. The shudder was stronger when the boy offered to take him on the trip. "Of course I would. I'll have to tell Narcissa- I don't think she'll mind, she's probably wanting to go with Lucius, anyway. And you're not a blood-traitor, I refuse to accept that you could be. I mean, once you claim that, next it'll be 'And I married a Muggle with whom I shall have six children named Moonbeam' and 'I dance with werewolves in the full-moonlight' and whathaveyous. Scary stuff like that that only my darkest imagination can fathom, you'd actually go out and do it just because you're slowly turning yourself crazy." Laughing heavily as he could no longer keep the charade going, he called over a House Elf and asked it for dessert. "I don't mind you're being a Gryffindor- Don't spread that around. I mind that everyone sees me as your lesser. I'm not your lesser, and I'm not your superior. We're both Blacks, and we're both superior to all of them, but the two of us, we're equals."
After mumbling something to the summoned house elf about chocolate and cream, Sirius turned back to Regulus. "Dancing with werewolves, huh? Wouldn't put it past myself, Reggy my dear." His face smirked but his mind was reminded of Remus; Remus, who would be soon turning into the werewolf. Sirius shuddered briefly, scared of the first full moon. Ah, that's right, Sirius remembered, I did promise Remus I'd visit Hogsmeade with him, didn't I? Perhaps I should... no, I'll compromise my time. I haven't spent quality time with Regulus in ages. "Not only that, but I do not want to know what your darkest imagination holds. I'd probably be disturbed out of my mind." After snickering briefly, his face calmed, and he spoke with a serious tone. "Regulus, I want you to listen to me. I understand that you have more of the Pure-Blood mentality than I do, and I suppose I will respect that. But as Blacks, we are not superior to anyone - and if we keep on believing that, things will turn very ugly in the coming years. That aside, I am glad you see as equals... although you will still always be my baby brother." Sirius' speech was interrupted by the house elf bringing the brothers their dessert. He looked on in delight at his own chocolate-mousse slathered in whipped cream. "You want?" Sirius questioned, spoonful at the ready, eyebrow flicking into his forehead.
Regulus didn't know what to say. "I have my own," he decided, swallowing dryly. "But Narcissa was talking about stuff we can see, and something about sneaking into the Shrieking Shack. I told her I'd do it if Trixie was too scared to." He took a bite of his own, then licked his lips and thought, 'What the hell?' and leaned into eat Sirius'.
Sirius beamed at Regulus before heaping a spoonful into his own mouth. "Ah! It's divine. I haven't had chocolate like this in forever." He sniggered at himself, taking an airy tone. "But, yes, Regulus, the Shrieking Shack is honestly nothing. I've been in there loads of times, it's really not that bad." He took another bite of his mousse, cream sticking to the edges of his lips.
"Well, if it's nothing impressive it won't be anything to see, and then I can brag to Trixie- You might not want to, I don't think she'd take it well if you tease her." He took another spoonful and held it up for Sirius.
"Doubt she would. You seem to be the only Black who doesn't take me completely seriously!" Sirius snorted loudly as he bent over slightly to reach Regulus' spoon, which caused a good portion of the mousse to fly into Sirius' face. After catching what was left in the spoon with his mouth, he politely motioned for a house elf to bring him a napkin. "Clearly, I am the most elegant and refined son of the Black house."
Regulus scoffed. "Elegantly snorting mousse, I can tell you're a Black. How can I take you seriously when I've lived with you? It's like how you don't treat me like an elitist bastard." He tried to take another bite, and just held the spoon out again. "I'd just trade off with you, but then I think I'd want mine instead of yours because at that point yours would be mine."
Sirius dabbed off his face with the towel the house elf brought him. "What can I say? I'm a very smooth young gentlemen, destined to be heir of the Black house and breed with my own cousins." He sobered. "Regulus, never do that. Ever. Breeding with cousins like Cissa and Bella... not good. Not even a very, very, very little bit." He leaned in for Regulus' spoon, catching it all with his tongue. He straightened, continuing to wipe off his face. "All gone?"
Regulus nodded, then broke out in hysterics. "I had- This is amazing, I had the same conversation with Cissy earlier today, about how I wouldn't dream of that. I love the three of them, but honestly? I wouldn't date them even if we weren't related. But if you go back in any history long enough, we're all a little inbred, and unfortunately Pure-lines more than others. The only thing so wrong is, what do you tell the child when he sees the tapestries? It's easy enough to forget it when you're looking at your great-great-great-grandfather, but when it's your uncle/father..." Regulus shuddered. "I don't think I could do that to any future Blacks."
"You talked about Cissa with this?" He threw the napkin to his side, pushing another spoonful out toward his brother. "I'm glad you disapprove! Though, honestly. Forget uncles and fathers. I couldn't put myself through that. I couldn't stare at my child and think, 'hey! You don't have just half of my family's blood in you, you have all of it!'" He shuddered briefly before snickering rather loudly. He pressed a hand to his forward and ran fingers through his ebony locks, still shaking with murmured giggles. The whole subject was ridiculous. He vaguely noticed the house elves begin to stare at he and Regulus, done with the bulk of their cleaning and nightly kitchen duties. As much as he wanted to stay with Regulus, he thought it was best they go-- it was getting rather late, though he felt subtly aware that he didn't want to leave his brother for anything. "Say, Regulus, you think it's time that, we, you know... head out?"
"Alright," Regulus agreed. "I guess we'll see each other Saturday, then?" Regulus smiled. He really didn't want to leave. "Why couldn't you just be Slytherin?" he said, half-jokingly. "Or, since I know you'll say it, why couldn't I be Gryffindor. Sod it all, we should've just been Ravenclaws and be done with it."
"It's true. Or Hufflepuffs. Clearly we are both more Hufflepuff than anything else." Sirius laughed. "You know," he mulled over the thought in his brain before allowing it to escape his lips, "I'm not really all that tired, so if you're up to it, want to take a walk around the lake or something? Stupid idea, I know, but I feel like I haven't spent enough time with you. Or something like that."
Regulus sighed. "I'm just glad you said it first. If anyone asks, you're the girly one now."
Sirius gaped in mock horror. "Me, the girly one! O-ho, I think not." He leaned into Regulus, taking a few locks of his hair into his fingers. "This, this is the making of a very girly little boy. Your hair should not be this soft." He patted Regulus' head briefly before moving away. "I think you'll always be the girly one, Reggy. Your features are too feminine. Mine, now, my face has brute manliness written all over it."
"If brute manliness were synonymous with effeminate, you're the prime example of pure machismo," Regulus said coolly. He stood up, adjusting his cloak carefully. "Aren't you going to be cold out there? I mean, it may not be snowing, but it is rather chilly, and over the water...?"
Sirius scoffed lightly. "Pfft! Then you, you would be one of those body builder types with testosterone and excessive manliness oozing from every pore." He wrapped his arms around himself, pulling his sweater sleeves down. "I'll be fine. Just stay close. Body heat, you know."
Regulus slid his arm around his brother's waist because he was too short to reach his neck, sidling in closely. "Then let's not be out long? Just a quick walk and back." They walked out into the hallway, checking for Filch before going to the main entrance.
Sirius stirred, maneuvering his arm to hug Regulus' shoulder. "Yeah, we'd better not. Thanks." He grinned broadly, guiding his brother out of the entrance hall and into the night breeze. "I'm going to regret saying this once you tease me excessively about it, but I can never get over how beautiful this place is - especially at night." He shifted, neck craned toward the star-dotted sky.
Regulus sighed. "Now that you've said it I can't tease you about it. Besides, you're right." He looked up at his brother, who was starring at the stars. "Oh, come on, Siri, like it wasn't the first one you learned?" He jammed his finger the star his brother had been named for. "There. Sirius. And that one's Regulus. In Leo. Ironic that you're the Lion, huh?" He smiled, placing his head against his brother and grabbing the boy's forearm with his free hand. "Still, you're up there, and so am I."
"Yeah, and I've got the Dog star," Sirius sighed happily, allowing his hand to lazily massage the top of his brother's head. "Something so special about the heavens staring back at us with stars, and we're up there, you and I, it's really..." Sirius trailed off, not knowing how he could possibly finish the thought.
Regulus chewed his lower lip, thinking. "...Confounding," he decided. "That's the best word." He stared out at the lake. "I try not to think too much about what's up there," he admitted. "So much is down here to look at. Besides, I've got my own Sirius, and Andromeda and Bellatrix, that's three major constellations and legends right there."
"And I've got my own Regulus, what more could I want?" A breeze rippled through the field, grass blades standing on end. Sirius shivered slightly and felt himself squeeze his brother if just a little bit tighter.
"Dammit, Sirius, just take the damn cloak, I've had it coming out here, you can give it back inside," Regulus ordered, dropping his hands to struggle out of the cloak without actually leaving his brother's. His arms free, he unhooked the clasp and let it fall to the ground, kicking it back into the air and catching it. "I mean it."
"Are you kidding!? You'll catch cold. I'll live. The end." He faltered after hearing the definite tone to his brother's voice. "Fine, fine, have it your way. But we've got to compromise." Sirius sat down swiftly, laying the cloak over his lap. After a moment or two of silence, he waved at Regulus. "Join me, stupid git. Stars looks nicer from here anyhow."
Regulus moaned dejectedly, plopping down next to him and resting his head back on his bicep. "You're so damn selfish, Siri. What do you want to show me stars for, I've seen them, I've charted them, I've planned a few maps of where they'd be in two months and even figured out a few Astrological correspondences for extra credit. They're stars. Balls of gas infinite miles away, that we happen to have names in common with."
Sirius shifted, placing half the cloak on his brother's lap. "Yes, yes, I know. But I'm willing to bet you've never looked at them outside school work, have you? Or, at least not recently. C'mon now, just relax, we'll go inside in a few minutes."
He sighed. "Okay. What are we looking for? Any particular constellation?"
He shrugged, and Regulus' head near to slipped from its resting place. "Sorry about that. Er... nothing specific, now. Actually. Your favorite. Tell me about that one."
Regulus closed his eyes, pointing to the constellations without having to look. "Vega. It's actually the brightest, didja know? Sirius is just closer, much, much closer. And Vega's still so bright..." He nuzzled against his brother to get comfortable again. "Didja ever think that you weren't the brightest? That you're not the one who truly shines, just the one everyone notices? That's what I like about it, that very few people know the truth because they only can see things from so far away, and getting close would burn their eyes."
Sirius let out a husky laugh, pulling Regulus into a half-armed hug. "Are you trying to say something, kid? That everyone notices me, but I'm really nothing special?" He ruffled his little brother's hair leaning back on one arm.
"Maybe," Regulus admitted. "But honestly I think it's just the perception that gets me. That people don't bother to look, more than that they don't see. It's obvious, but not at first glance." He hugged his brother back, the cloak sliding off his legs when he turned to use both arms. He laughed, because he was amused at what he was saying, and how Sirius was interpreting it, and that they were stargazing of all things, but also because Sirius always could make him laugh with him. He took one hand to tug the cloak back up, then went back to the hug.
"It's true, what you're saying - perception and all of it... I would have never thought of it that, way, though. Suppose that's what I get for not taking Astronomy classes, or not taking them very seriously. Who would have thought that I could have raised such a smart little brother?" Sirius felt the vibration of laughter on his chest before the sound engulfed his ears, and he felt himself beaming down at Regulus. He squeezed his brother, slightly nuzzling his head into Regulus' shoulder. He began to laugh; it was a slow laugh as he felt the black of the air turn to warmth.
Soon he was laughing so hard he had to either drop of Sirius' chest into his lap or flop on the ground beside him. He chose the second option because it allowed him to stretch out his back between their mutual hysterics. Perhaps he should tell Sirius that it was their parents who'd raised him, and his own bit of growing up on the side, albeit with some influence from the older boy. But he just kept laughing, and decided that was better than banter.
After a few moments of relentless laughter, Sirius began to fall silent. He flopped backwards and placed a hand on his stomach, a bright grin spreading itself across his features. "And that, Regulus, is why I love laughing!" Sirius announced in all seriousness before giggling lightly and turning on his side to face his brother.
Regulus frowned, but the humour in his eyes ruined the effect of a decent snobbish scowl. "And what, brother dear, makes you think I don't?" He kept the attempted scowl up for a moment more, then stuck his tongue out playfully before rolling away to look up. "What's you favourite? And please don't say it's Sirius. That doesn't count, even if you mean it."
"Pfft. Fine. Destroy my only bloody chance at saying something intelligent about a star." He sighed, glancing around at the pricks of light dotting the blackened-blue sky. He reached into the night, hands grasping the stars directly above him. "Regulus."
He hit his brother in the chest. "You're not fair. I told you the truth."
Sirius let out a short laugh. "Who says I'm not?"
"Alright, fine. You'd better have a good explanation." Regulus was blushing, but the good thing about star gazing was it's harder to see that.
"Well, for starters, Regulus is a star that's either a prince or a lion. While the symbols are similar in some ways, they're actually pretty conflicting. I mean, the lion represents courage and loyalty; the prince represents a sort of... arrogance and royalty." Sirius remained at his side, hand supporting his head. "And that's you. You're selfish but selfless, brave but royal."
Regulus laughed. "I swear you're trying to seduce me. It's not working, but it certainly feels-" Oh, dammit. He had to learn to stop saying things he didn't mean to say. "-That way," he finished anyway, weakly. "If you were less girly than you really are, or more girly. I'm not sure, really."
Sirius chuckled, scoffing at his brother. "Regulus, dear, if I were trying to seduce you, we'd be long shagged out by now. No one can resist the," He paused, attempting to make a phallic sort of motion but altogether failing. "Nevermind. But I'm irresistible if I want to be, I promise!"
Regulus laughed. "See, that was the first masculine thing you've said all night. Be irresistible if you want. I've got a strange idea that I'll have a girlfriend first this year." Regulus grinned, propping himself up like his brother did. "Although it'd be ironic, wouldn't it? The end-all, be-all of the Black line... I imagine Mum would die on the spot. Dad would wait until after we were dead, of course, but Mum, there'd be no saving her. And there'd be none of the childhood trauma mess. Just a different sort of childhood trauma." He was laughing again. "God, I really missed you."
"Oh? Oh? Is that so, Regulus! Well. I bet you will, just because I don't commit easily! I need only the best, after all." Sirius snorted briefly. "Yes, mum will have a fit. And she'll turn to me, crying, 'Sirius! Stop him! He's marrying a HALF-BLOOD. Salvage the line!' And I will marry a Muggle born, and she'll have a bloody crisis and zap me off the family tree. And then she'll turn to her nieces and pray for the best, if she doesn't have a heart-attack first." He laughed at the thought, locking eyes with his brother. "Me too. We really must do this more often."
"I would never date a half-blood," Regulus said with conviction.
"If it was love?" Sirius replied, eying Regulus.
"Lust, perhaps. I couldn't see love coming into it. Not for the reasons you're thinking- I just can't love someone who doesn't understand the way I am, the way I think. Centuries of pure-blooded thought, and it boils down to complete confusion with those not like us. It's not prejudice, although I'll grant I feel that, to a lesser extent than you're willing to believe of me, but simply incompatibility." Regulus mused for a moment on the implications. "Why, Sirius? Are you in love with a half-blood? Or a muggle-born?"
Sirius shrugged his shoulders. "I'm not in love, Regulus. I just don't close myself off." He sighed lightly. "Though I guess I do see your point, but being around so many beautiful people that are Muggle-born of half-blood makes me doubt that someone like you could never be with someone like that. Although I will grant you that you are proud of your family, you're not going to little a silly younger brother in the way of that, are you?"
"Beauty is merely the first thing, Sirius. I prefer attractive people, but I can find people who fit both. And I'm not going to regulate you- You're too stubborn, far more than I, and wouldn't listen, anyway."
"When I say beautiful, I mean that they're brilliant people - not that they're physically attractive." Sirius closed his eyes, rolling from his side onto his back. "As much as I can preach about how much I hate the family for their views on this sort of thing, a part of me always feels like I'm betraying the bloodline by even thinking about it. I'm not like Cissa or Bella or... you, I can't just like someone because they've got so-called pure blood running through them. And I'm almost afraid I'll never be able to find someone because I can't bond with others on that basis."
Regulus reached up without looking to muss Sirius' hair, starring into the void area above the lake. "I'm not sure we're meant to feel love. Perhaps just mutual acceptance will do. After all, we're Blacks. For all our accomplishments, we have twice the horrors, things that merely being pure would not be the right justification for. I like the segregation, but not the sentiment. I like being superior, knowing I am, but I don't like the idea that the others are animals or vermin or worse still, don't exist. Perhaps the penalty for being a Black is a lonely, unloved death, full of many experiences and fancies and one-night stands, but never, never anything true. And if that's the case, then I'm too preoccupied with being optimistic about changing that to be afraid of it."
"Regulus, I can't live like that." He pushed a hand up to his forehead, straightening unruly hair. "I've tried the best I can to separate myself from most of the family - the ideals, the values, the people - but a part of me is never going to be okay with that. Bickering between Cissa and I, Bella and I - that's one thing, but living without you, my baby brother, is another thing entirely." He exhaled loudly. "But I don't know how I could live a life of one-night stands, superiority complexes, and... loneliness." He laughed weakly. "I'm sure I sound like a total sod, saying this."
"I keep telling everyone you're not a blood-traitor," Regulus mused, still starring. "I ask myself why I say that sometimes, because I know who your friends are and what you think. I think it's because when I think blood-traitor, I think of people who've turned around to accept less pures, but when I think 'Sirius Black is a blood-traitor'"(he winced as he said that aloud for the first time)"'I think, 'How can he be? He never betrayed me, and we've the exact same blood.' If you think you're anything less in my eyes, Siri, remember, you're still my hero, and I still trust you."
"I swear that you're the only thing in that family that makes me keep going back," He smiled into Regulus' eyes. "James offered me his place over and over and Remus is more than accommodating... but I can't help it, I keep coming back every summer, every holiday. I tell my friends I hate my family, I tell them I'd rather be dead than live that life, that I'm some sort of Black fluke and that's a good thing." He paused, closing his eyes. "I tell myself I'm a blood-traitor, because it gives me solace in the fact that I don't belong to the Black line. And then I think of you, and when we were kids - hell, when Cissa and Bella were kids, we used to get along so well. And now, it's like, what happened? But for some reason, I can still be with you and there doesn't always have to be pain or pure-bloods or Blacks or anything. It can just be us. I guess that's what brothers are for, yeah?" He chuckled. "I'm talking nonsense, Reggy, just listen."
"Perhaps it's the cold," Regulus consented. "We're both getting progressively less sensical."
"It's true. The cold and the night are making us total loons." Sirius nodded. "Shall we go in, then?" As much as he didn't want to leave his brother, wanted to grasp the time with him, he felt the edges of sleep tug at his vision and the feeling of dreams start blurring with his words.
"Might be best, I think it's after hours by now." Regulus stood up, taking his cloak back. He rubbed his shoulders and shivered before sliding it on. He held his hand out to his brother.
Sirius grinned, taking it to pull himself up. "Or early hours. God knows it's nearly morning by now..." The two fell in step as they began walking toward the entrance doors.
"Think we'll get detention for this?" he joked, reaching for his brother's hand again.
He took the hand casually, smiling inwardly at the warmth of Regulus' palm. "If we get caught."
"Let's go," Regulus said, dragging his brother into a sprint.
*Please note that this must have taken place not last night, but a few nights ago, because the full moon was the night of the 19th, and we all know where Padfoot must have been at that time. Sorry for any confusion, your Sirius was being very absent-minded.