WEEK 2 OF THE BEST AND MOST FEARSOME BRAWL OF THEM ALL!
(so fearsome, infact, that we've had some more dropouts - sigh - but thank you for letting me know so I'm not hanging around waiting.)
Please read all the drabbles (there are ten), and vote for your favourite and least favourite. Choose carefully. Take into consideration not only the golden rules of SPaG, but also characterisation and whether you liked the drabble. I will repeat this. You may vote for your own drabble. I will allow that, but please do not try to vote twice. I will find out because I'm sneaky like that and have access to the databases of MI5, MI6, CIA, FBI, and Albus Dumbledore's Deluminator (you have no IDEA of the powers of that thing).
The voting link is
Voting will close on Sunday 26th May 3PM (BST).
Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd, none
Word Count: 253 (counting hyphenated words as one)
I am no Andromeda.
My family have been pure-bloods for Merlin knows how long. We have eliminated Squibs and Blood Traitors from our tree for that time. Some we have eliminated from our line entirely. I have tortured Muggles, killed Muggle-borns. All innocents. Their only crime was not being born a pure-blood. People say that Muggle-borns steal their magic from Squibs, but it’s not true. That’s just how magic works. It’s not fair, but we just have to live with it.
But what if we don’t? Andromeda is gone now, scorched from the tree, fled from the House. She does not regret her decision. She will not tolerate the discrimination of the man she loves. Perhaps we cannot change how magic works, but we can change how we feel about it.
I am no Sirius.
At eleven, I joined my brother at Hogwarts. But I did not see him often, and far less did I talk to him. He was marked with red, distinct from the family green, as a lone poppy in a field. And we treated him as the changed man he was.
He relished it. Perhaps her associated with them for a reason – Muggle-borns, Half-bloods, werewolves, Blood Traitors. Perhaps there was some motive, some purpose to him, that angering his family might change something. Now, he too is gone, blasted from the tree.
I am no rebel.
I am Black and green and silver and pure. But that does not mean I cannot fight. I will. You just won’t know.
Title: The Brothers Black
Word Count: 494
A/N: Dictionary.com defines "insurgence" as an act of rebellion or revolt.
Sirius trembled with suppressed rage. Taking the stairs two at a time, he threw himself into his room—the only space in this god-forsaken house he didn’t despise. He slammed the door so hard the hinges rattled, wanting to piss them off, yet knowing they wouldn’t be bothered.
You had to care to be bothered.
Sirius paced his room, trying to breathe. Next year, he would be of age, and he would leave. The promise of it was the only thing keeping him sane. Even so, it was becoming more and more difficult to stifle the restless passion that stirred in his chest. Their world was heating up, and his family was on the wrong side of things.
The Prophet had been the catalyst. There’d been a disappearance—a low-level Ministry worker whose name meant nothing to anyone in the Black household, but whose photograph had burned itself onto Sirius’ memory.
“Looks like our lot had a busy night,” his mother had commented.
Her words had bubbled and boiled inside Sirius. “Your lot, you mean.”
“Of course. You didn’t think I meant you, did you?”
It had been the sight of his brother, seemingly unconcerned, that had done him in. Regulus shared their family's pure-blood ideals, and Sirius often found his apparent apathy unbearable.
In his room, Sirius abruptly stopped pacing and began to laugh. Then, with his wand, he opened his trunk and sent his clothes and books flying into it.
Freedom wasn’t something to sit around and wait for, it was something to take, and fight for, if necessary. He hesitated at his bedroom door, hating to leave the things on his wall, the various images that had hung boldly in this house, never letting him forget who he really was. But he did leave them in the end, sealing each one with a Sticking Charm, a parting gift for his mother.
Walking away, he had only one regret: that Regulus would not follow.
The place was exactly as Kreacher had described.
The man fixed his eyes on the island, on the destiny that waited in the eerie silence of their crossing. He did not look at the water, not even once, for fear his courage would slip into its inky depth before he had a chance to turn the knife he’d come to turn.
When the potion touched his lips, the only sound was that of the elf sobbing, but by the last drop, the man’s cries easily overpowered those of the creature. The guilt and stain of his many sins rendered everything else meaningless, and Regulus collapsed under their crushing weight. Countless faces swam in his vision, but Sirius stood before them all, accusing him. He’d given up his brother for the Dark Lord; for such sins, Regulus knew, there was no forgiveness.
There was only one thing left--one act to offer penance for these crimes and quench his unbearable thirst and shame. He dragged himself toward it.
Word Count: 490
Rating: 1st-2nd Years
Hermione knelt at the foot of her bed, glanced hastily over her shoulder, and opened her trunk. Inside were her new snow boots, still in their cardboard box. She dumped the boots out of the box, placed the empty box on the floor, and quickly took a Galleon coin from her money sack and her scissors from her box of desk supplies. Then she closed the trunk again.
Working rapidly, she pulled apart the glued flaps of the box and its lid to make flat sheets of cardboard and slid them into her schoolbag with the scissors and the coin. Then she stood up, thankful that no one had come into the dormitory to watch all this. You couldn't be too careful.
In her schoolbag was a parchment on which she had copied a Charm from an Advanced Charms book in the library earlier that day. It was too risky to check the book out of the library. Hermione had watched enough detective shows on her parents' television during the summer to know that the slightest clue could be the undoing of a criminal. Suppose Madam Pince happened to mention at the dinner table in the Great Hall that the Granger girl was so studious that she had checked out a N.E.W.T. level Charms book even though she hadn't sat her O.W.L.s yet. Then suppose that Umbridge overheard that remark and hauled Hermione into her office to ask why. Could I think of a convincing lie in a moment? Hermione wondered. Probably not. Barely sixteen and already thinking like a criminal, Hermione reflected. These were dire times.
Staying awake in the common room that night was tedious, waiting for everyone to go to bed. I won't show this to Harry and Ron until I'm sure it works, Hermione thought. Dear Merlin, let it work. We can't afford the risk.
Finally alone, she took the box lid from her bag, laid it on the wooden table, placed the coin on the corner of the lid, and traced around it with a quill. Using scissors she carefully cut out the circular cardboard shape, laid it next to the coin, and Transfigured the cardboard disk into a fake Galleon.
So far so good. Now came the hard part. Referring to the parchment she had copied that afternoon, Hermione attempted to put a Protean Charm on the fake coin and tested it by changing the numbers on the real coin. After a few tries she was successful -- the fake coin changed also. Hurray!
With renewed energy she manufactured twenty-seven more fake Galleons, and one by one put Protean Charms on them. After the first few coins, she could get the Protean Charm every time. It was well after midnight when she finished.
I am so thankful this worked, Hermione thought. What we are doing is so dangerous. What will happen if we get caught? The slightest clue, an atypical conversation in the Great Hall...
Being a criminal was not easy.
Title: Family be Damned
Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th/mild language
Word Count: 499
A/N: When writing this drabble, I decided to go with a more basic, open definition of the word "insurgence", which was "an act of rebellion; insurrection; revolt", instead of the full military definition. In all honesty though, as young adults, our families are the ones we rebel against the most.
"You can't be serious, Scorpius," Lucius Malfoy said over his tea.
"No, I'm joking," Scorpius answered sarcastically. He had hoped that by this time, his grandfather would have come to terms with his relationship with Lily.
"Scorpius," Draco warned from the other side of the table. "Show some respect."
"I thought it was just you being a rebellious teenager," Lucius said. "You're supposed to outgrow that."
"So you thought that I was dating Lily just to make you guys mad?" Scorpius was shocked and a little annoyed. "What kind of person do you think I am! You think I'd use a girl to stick it to my parents and then drop her?"
"She's Arthur Weasley's granddaughter!" Lucius exclaimed, setting down his cup of tea.
"So? That doesn't make her any less of a person! She's beautiful and smart and athletic. She's one of the kindest people you will ever meet. I could never pretend to fall for her and then dump her after I had made a splash. Besides, Mum and Dad didn't even really care!"
"Of course they didn't, they thought it was a phase!"
"Then why aren't they making a big deal about it now? They've known for weeks that I was thinking about asking her to marry me, and they have not said a single thing against it." Scorpius was quickly getting angrier. He couldn't believe his grandfather's prejudice towards Lily and her family.
"Draco," Lucius turned on his son. "You approved of this?"
"I don't think I could stop him if I tried," Draco answered. "I don't have anything against Potter."
"Nothing against Potter?" Lucius spluttered.
"I don't have to like him, Dad, but I don't hate him anymore. Besides, in today's society, having ties with Potter could be very beneficial."
Scorpius looked as his father in bewilderment. "Beneficial? Is that all this is to you?" He pushed his chair back and stood up. "Does it even matter that I love her? She's not a tie or a blood traitor or someone to be used!" Draco's voice had risen to a yell.
"Scorpius, settle down," Draco said.
"I will not settle down! I am going to marry Lily, and not because it's a good political move or because having ties to her family will advance us. I am doing it because I love her."
"Are you sure this isn't just you trying to be rebellious?" Lucius asked. "You don't want to tie yourself down right away."
Scorpius threw his tea cup against the wall. "I already told you it's not!" He grabbed his cloak from the back of his chair and put it on.
"We aren't done here!" Lucius said, standing up.
"No, I think we are," Scorpius replied, his voice back to normal tones. "I'm done with this crap. I don't care if you never talk to me for the rest of my life. I love her, and I'm going to marry her, family be damned!"
He slammed the door on his way out.
Title: It Started With A Game
Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years; no warnings
Word Count: 493
Do you remember Wizards and Trolls? That game we used to play? Molly was always the troll and we were the rebel fighters.
We were the hardened travellers of distant lands, chasing down the fiercest enemy imaginable. We were the soldiers, relishing the glory and honour of a battle won. We were the opposite of ordinary. We did not conform. We were heroes.
And when we became Aurors we told them, those who questioned such a difficult and harrowing career, that it started with a game.
The trolls are much bigger than Molly, now, although I don’t think they are quite as fierce. Our enemy takes more than just fake spells and sprints through the trees to quell. He is elusive. He is in control. We must stop Him.
That first battle, when I thought Mulciber had already killed me, I learned that bravery is not a kindness, but kindness is always brave. Marlene could have left me there and saved herself, but she saw my wounds, she came back for me. She even fixed them before Apparating us away. That was freedom and bravery. But it was also kindness.
I think, in the end, that is what we are fighting for.
Some mornings I wake, brother, and feel fear. Sometimes I want to tell our story without being in it. But those are the mornings when you look the most like Molly. Her eyes, your eyes, remind me of kindness. That is what makes me brave. That is what brings the revolution to my heart, and to my mouth, and to my hands.
There is war in us, brother, and a bravery. But bravery is not kindness—it is a weakness we cannot resist. It is a truth we must demand, and it is a life we must lead until the very end.
But always remember what we are fighting for. Remember our humanity.
I’m sitting at the kitchen table with my wand beside the parchment. Waiting. Ready. The night is cold, and I know that once we leave this warmth it might not ever return to our bones.
I am not sure whether you will ever read this, Gideon. Because if you do then that means that our kindness has been my end. I just hope that if that end ever comes, then you are not beside me, that you are reading this letter and that the wizards live on and the trolls do not. I love you, brother.
Do remember Wizards and Trolls? That game we used to play? Molly was always the troll but tonight she is the future we fight for, she and Arthur and their beautiful family are the light for which we must quell the darkness.
We must go back to those days, Gideon. We must be rebel fighters. We must be the opposite of ordinary. We must remember that kindness exists even in the darkest of hours.
It started with a game.
Do you remember?
Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th, sensitive topic
Word Count: 498
A/N: I hope I did this era justice.
The July heat lingered in a shimmering haze on the dirt road as it wound its way through the pockmarked countryside. A wizard named Jean stood by the side of the road, and waited.
Behind him the skeletal remains of a small town sat as a sad reminder of the times they were in. It was slowly being overrun with weeds, and suffocating under a life gutted silence. Jean remembered a time when this land had been peaceful, but that was before Grindelwald had taken over.
As the afternoon heat seeped into him, Jean wondered when or how his English contact would come. The English Ministry of Magic had been oddly silent the past month, especially after the news that the French Ministry of Magic had been driven underground by Grindelwald’s forces. The French magical populace was scattered and leaderless. Muggle-borns and Squibs were being rounded up, and taken to unknown locations never to be seen again. It had only been recently that contact with their English ally had started again.
Jean’s thoughts were interrupted by an odd, muffled rumble coming from the sky. He looked up expecting to see a Muggle warplane, but saw something quite different instead. Flying down towards him was a sleek black car. The car landed smoothly on the road ahead of him, and drove up to the waiting wizard.
Jean smiled as the car came to a stop, and its driver and passenger got out. He would have recognized the red hair of Septimus Weasley anywhere. His passenger, on the other hand, he had never seen before.
“Jean, I’m sorry we’ve not been in contact in awhile. There have been some internal problems in the English Ministry of Magic,” Septimus stated solemnly as he approached the Frenchman. “This is my partner, Marius Black. He has agreed to stay with your refugee camp as a liaison. I have also brought food supplies, medicinal herbs, and more,” Septimus finished as he pointed to the car behind him. This was welcome news. Their current food supply was about to run out, and they had no more healing potions or medicinal herbs.
“Where is the refugee camp?” Marius asked.
Jean pointed behind him as he answered, “This town used to be a magical town much like your own Hogsmeade, but it was decimated by Grindelwald a year ago. We’ve surrounded it with protective spells. It’s now one of our largest refugee, and defensive training camps in France. You’ve no idea how sorely we needed the supplies and help you’ve brought.”
“I will do what I can to help,” Marius responded. “Though I am only a Squib, I do know some Muggle hand-to-hand combat skills.”
Jean laid a hand on Marius’s shoulder, and said, “Any help is greatly appreciated. Squib or not, our differences don’t matter now.”
Septimus smiled. Jean’s people may have been bent, battered, and brutalized, but they had yet to be broken. The insurgency was very much alive.
“Lead the way, Jean,” Septimus responded.
Title:The Quiet Overthrow
Word Count: 464
Warnings:Reference to animal cruelty
His breath caught in his throat. It was here, he knew it. He knew it as surely as he knew his name, as surely as he knew anything in this world. The feeling of achieving what no one else had infused every crevice of his being. This was success in its purest form, and he had earned it through years of effort and dedication. He had done it.
A single finger slid down the cool glass, drawing an invisible line between the past and the present, between the lukewarm calm that was and the change that was about to start. The sense of power was headily sweet, pleasanter than Mudbloods' brandy or the best Firewhiskey. It was the mead of the strong, and, just now, he was the strongest in this school – and he would not stop there, either. He held the power to start the ultimate rebirth of wizarding civilization – the exact timing was up to him alone. Soon, they would all learn what he was really capable of.
For five long years, he had plotted and planned – and searched – ceaselessly, doggedly. He had been through what felt like the entire Hogwarts Library. Along the way, he gathered knowledge that many would envy, but it did not distract him from his task. Along the way, he gathered people he thought would fit – people with ideas that suited their tasks in his master plan. They did not distract him, either; however; they were tools, cogs in his machine that would change the world and place him at the pinnacle of power. Oh, yes, it would happen; one day, it would all happen. Today marked the first step.
The boy gazed into the mirror, ignoring his reflection. An onlooker would have thought he was trying to see through the glass. He chuckled. He knew perfectly well what lay beyond. No, he was looking into the future, the glorious future in which no one would dare to suspect him of deeds they called evil and he called experimentation. No one would call him odd, or scary, like the stupid little girls at the orphanage. He'd show them what was truly frightening, the pathetic little Mudbloods. They would remember the hanged rabbit and wish life were still that simple.
Today, Tom had found the goal of hs very first quest – the entrance to the seat of his power, the instrument of his very first ascent. With his dear fanged pet at his side, he would start a rebellion to shake the foundations of the world belonging to servile worms with no imagination. He'd show them all – and the Transfiguration teacher would be the first to learn of his mistake. He'll remember the lecture he saw fit to deliver to the greatest rebel the world would ever see.
Title: An act of rebellion
Word Count: 409 words
Rating: 1rst-2nd year
A/N: We don't know why Sirius decided to leave his parents' house, so this is my interpretation.
He needed to get out of here.