³⁵, REGULUS BLACK'S ART EXHIBITION

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𝐂𝐇𝐎𝐂𝐎𝐋𝐀𝐓𝐄
chapter thirty-five; Regulus Black's Art Exhibition
" Sirius, your brother is an artistic genius. "

  THE ONLY PERSON home when Madeline Potter entered the house was Regulus Black

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  THE ONLY PERSON home when Madeline Potter entered the house was Regulus Black. She didn't ask where her parents were or if James and Sirius were together, only took a seat beside the raven-haired boy.

  "How was your sleepover?"

  "Fun," Madeline smiled gently, pressing herself further into the couch cushions as she pulled her feet beneath her, "Lils and I just hung out— she showed me muggle London."

  "And?"

  "And it was unreal, there was this diner with a jukebox," She smiled as she spoke, "We listened to Bowie— this muggle singer— and ate cheeseburgers."

  "Sounds like you had a busy night!"

  Madeline craned her neck to see the source of the comment, her parents wandering in with a single shopping bag. "It was busy— but fun."

  "I'm glad you had fun, lovie," Euphemia smiled, kissing Madeline's head as she passed by. "Where's your brother?"

  "Dunno," Madeline shrugged, "It's too quiet for him or Sirius to be here."

  Regulus snickered.

  "Oh!" Fleamont clapped his hands, "James was going to see, uh, Lily today!"

  "That doesn't explain where—" Euphemia's words came to a halt when Sirius appeared in the fireplace, shrouded by a plume of green flames. "Sirius is."

  "Sorry," The boy said, ducking to exit the fireplace with a small parcel under his arm, "Guess the surprise is ruined now— happy birthday, Reg."

  Regulus jerked up, shock settling across the Potters as Sirius held out the rectangular box.

  "Sirius—"

  "Just take it," Sirius said, waving the parcel slightly.

  "But—"

  "I didn't know it was your birthday," Madeline frowned, making Regulus frown as well.

  "It's not important, Mads."

  "You're turning 16, that's important!"

  "Yes, so take the present," Sirius whined, falling onto the ground. 

  Regulus gave a healthy eye roll, but took the box. He sat still for a moment, frowning when he realized everyone was waiting for him. So, the boy caved, shuffling the lid until it was open. 

  Madeline did not understand why Sirius had bought his brother a quidditch pennant for his sixteenth birthday or why Regulus was so affected by it. His eyes softened for the first time around anyone other than Madeline, lips parted without any syllables tumbling out of his lips.

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