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Advent Drabbles: Dec. 10 A Prize, a Hat and a Motto

Advent Drabbles: Dec. 10 A Prize, a Hat and a Motto

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sherlock.  not good?
December 10, 2009
Title: A Prize, a Hat and a Motto
Fandom: Harry Potter
Pairing/Characters: Regulus, Sirius, Narcissa, Andromeda, Bella
Rating: G
Words: 400
Prompt: Christmas Crackers

>There were many traditions at the Black family Yuletide dinner, but a favourite of both boys had always been the Christmas crackers. They sold special wizarding crackers in Diagon Alley, and these were elaborate and popular, especially among the better families. Kreacher had been sent to purchase them, after he had consulted with an eager and happy Regulus. His brother was at school.

They were green with a net of old silver filigree thread. The whole family and their cousins crossed their arms around the table to pull the crackers together. Their old servant clapped his hands excitedly. Clouds of smoke shot through with green and silver sparks exploded, glittering with ribbons of light, accompanied by a clash of silver cymbals.

At every plate fell a simple silver instrument. A green and silver hat appeared on each head, and a scroll of cream parchment unrolled before each member of the family.

Regulus had a mouth organ, Sirius a silver penny-whistle. Narcissa had a xylophone, Andromeda a handful of bells, and Bella a tambourine. Sirius took off his green hat, throwing it down by his plate and turning it rebellious red. He looked at his brother's prize. Ever the peace-maker, Regulus offered him the mouth organ, by far the better instrument to Sirius' mind, he knew.

Ever since he had been Sorted, their parents had looked askance at their elder son, favouring the younger. Regulus was perceptive and regretful. Even if he had made foolish choices, Sirius was still his brother. He would come around, Regulus was sure.

"I already have one," Sirius tossed him the whistle as he slammed his way out of the room. "Here's your extra little toy!"

There should have been a band, and the girls were tentatively experimenting. Even Andromeda was included, though Narcissa, cool and simply quiet, had interjected herself between her sisters. Why did Sirius have to be so... dogmatic? Family was family to the younger boy, as it seemed to be to Narcissa. Strange, he thought. Though they would hate to admit it, Sirius most resembled Bella with his temper, his misplaced will and his strange battles.

He tried the little pipe and the sound was pure, piping and high. The notes seemed to lilt and ripple. It would have been beautiful, but it was tainted now by Sirius' bitterness. Regulus mourned already. His motto read mockingly:

Golden moments: precious treasure.
Fill your box beyond its measure.
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