Harry groaned as someone shook his shoulder, “this had better be good.” He heard a snort and dragged on eye open to see Neville’s generally blurry shape before him. The room was dark, a few floating orbs of light shifted around the room and Harry could hear some of the other Aurors snoring or grunting lightly in the department barracks. The beds weren’t the most comfortable things but after hours of being on your feet they worked in a pinch. Or would have if Harry had been able to sleep longer.
“Kingsley needs to see you.”
With another groan Harry hauled himself into a sitting position, resting his head in his hands as he tried to get his bearings. He felt something poke him and blindly reached up to take his glasses from his friend and look at his watch. “I just got to sleep!” He moaned as he fell back against the squeeky, lumpy bed and hearing growls and rumbles from the other Aurors around him about them trying to sleep.
“How long have you been awake?” Neville asked as he held out a hand.
“Thirty two hours,” he huffed as he clapped hands with the man and allowed him to be hauled to his feet. He raked his fingers through is unruly hair to try to tame the curls, only to have them bounce back. A jaw cracking yawn split his lips and he felt something warm shoved into his hands as they walked. He blinked blearily down at the steaming cup in his hand and groaned, slinging an arm around Neville’s shoulders. “I could kiss you.”
“Please don’t, I’m still trying to dodge your fanclub around here because of your drunken snogging.”
Harry snorted into his drink, letting the dark coffee settle across his tongue. Neville must have put a pick me up because he felt a rush of rejuvenating energy race through him and the fog in his head cleared up. “Kingsley say what he needed?”
“Something to do with this latest case, now it’s gone international.” Neville scrubbed a hand over his face as they shouldered open a door. “How’s Ron?”
“Living it up, the git,” Harry grumbled. “He gets to play all day in the shop and hang out with the kids and lord it over my head. He’s even worse now that he and Hermione divorced.”
“He did take that Unforgivable for you,” Neville pointed out.
Harry sighed, it was true. Their last big case Ron had done the Gryffindor thing and jumped out in front of Harry to take a nasty cruciatus curse aimed at him. They caught the dark wizard but Ron’s injuries had been to much for him and he left the Auror Department, leaving Harry without a partner for the last five months. He missed his friend but knew that this was better for him. Hermione and Ron had lasted for years, building a beautiful family, but their childhood spats eventually grew into adult ones and they had separated about a year before the accident. Ron was seemingly enjoying being single while Hermione had reconnected with an old flame, Viktor Krum. He shook his head as they turned a corner and Harry stopped dead in his tracks to see an unfamiliar woman smirking at Blaise Zabini, her slender fingers wrapped around his bicept as he preened like a peacock.
He had to admit, she was striking with long chocolate brown hair that fell in a loose braid down her back and held laces of deep red and shocking silver. Harry could only see her profile and she had an almost oval shaped face with proud cheekbones and a slender nose. Her eyes were the most startling shade of forest green that could be seen from across the room. She wore a deep sapphire colored cloak over an equally blue shirt and jeans tucked into knee high black heeled boots with a wand holster strapped to her thigh.
“Syl! Don’t go running off like that!” A voice behind Harry made the senior Auror jolt. “‘Scuse me!” The same voice said and a small body pushed between himself and Neville and Harry caught the bright scent of citrus. The voice came from a short, curvaious witch; her black hair was tossed into a messy bun atop her head. Her heart-shaped face was open and honest with warm brown eyes and she wore a deep purple robe that fluttered around her as she stalked to the darker woman. Harry watched them for a moment, the shorter of the two witches trying to scold the taller one who simply arched an eyebrow at the scolding, their words lost to the dull roar of the bullpen.
“There you are Harry,” Kingsley’s deep voice called out from the direction of the Department Head’s office.
“Duty calls, have fun corralling your slag of a partner.” Harry waved Neville off and walked over to Kingsley’s office. “Oh...Draco, hi.” He said softly catching sight of a second person already seated in the office.
Draco Malfoy arched a brow from where he sat, his ivory hair pulled back by a black ribbon and his Auror robes pristine as always. “You look like you just rolled out of bed Harry,” there was a smirk on his lips but it was strained. The deep bags under his eyes betraying his exhaustion.
Harry felt a pang for his childhood-enemy-turned-friend. When they all went for their famous ‘eighth year they had formed a bit of a bond over the horrors they had all faced, Draco being part of only a handful of Slytherins who had come back to the Castle. Harry had spoken at the Wizengamot trial for both Draco and Narcissa, insisting that they had done everything they could to simply survive while Lucius had followed blindly. The Malfoy patriarch was currently rotting in his cell on Azkaban and Harry knew for a fact that Draco had not gone to see his father since before Scorpius was born. He shook himself and tried for a weak smile at the blonde, “you’re back.”
“Can’t stay sequestered away, no matter how much the world wishes you would.” Draco sighed shaking his head, “I got your card, thank you...for allowing Scorpius to stay with you this summer. I couldn’t ask him to…”
Harry reached over and placed a hand on his shoulder, “It’s alright, I really don’t mind. Scor is a great kid, though his dad can be a right git sometimes.”
Draco let out a husky laugh as he shook his head, but his own hand came up to touch Harry’s lightly. “Al’s a good kid too for being the son of a Gryffindork.”
Kingsley cleared his throat making both men jump and Harry gave him a sheepish grin as he let his and slip from Draco’s, rubbing the back of his head. “Sorry Sir, Neville said you needed to see me?”
“You and Draco,” Kingsley said smoothly. “We will be joined shortly, but I wanted to speak with you both beforehand. You are two of my top Aurors and this case is unlike any we have caught.”
Harry’s brow furrowed as he dropped into the chair next to Draco, “you’re being unusually vague Kingsley.”
The elder man shook his head as the door to his office opened and the two unfamiliar women Harry had seen earlier walked into the office. He watched as they both stopped and held a stance that kept their heads high and their hands folded behind their backs. Over the left side of their chest was a crest, sewn into their robes and Harry recognized it as the crest of the MCUSA and his brow furrowed again. “What is the MCUSA doing here?”
“Ladies, please introduce yourselves.”
The first woman stepped forward and inclined her head. “Agent Sylvie Rasputin, Senior Auror of the East Coast Criminal Investigation and Terrorist Department.” Her voice held a strange lilt that the Golden Boy couldn’t place.
“Agent Lyra Rosewood, Senior Auror of the East Coast Criminal Investigation and Terrorist Department.” The second woman smiled before standing straight like her partner and they both fell silent.
“Something big is happening over in the States. Please ladies, sit,” Kingsley flicked his wand and two plants transfigured into chairs with a muttered spell.
The women sat with Sylvie draping herself over the chair with one leg hooked over the arm and a disapproving glare from Lyra. “What? They aren’t nearly as tight ass here,” she shot a look to the English Aurors. “Americans,” she snorted rolling her eyes.
“Romani,” Sylvie hissed.
Lyra squeaked and bowed her head, “sorry Auror Shacklebolt, Sir!”
Harry caught Draco’s unamused look from the corner of the eye and he had to stop his own smile. The blonde detested a lack of professionalism and it really grated on his nerves to see the woman slouched and acting the way she was. He turned his attention back to his boss and cleared his throat, “so what’s going on?”
“The MCUSA believes your Ministry is going to be targeted.” Sylvie reached into her pocket pulling out a shrunken file and with a flick of her wand returned it to it’s normal size. “In the last four months there have been twenty-two attacks across the United States.” She slid out pictures, handing them around to the English Aurors.
Draco was horrified by what he saw, his fingers trembling as he held the picture. Twisted bodies, torn limbs thrown about, and chilling things on the walls; it was a horror show that nearly rivaled what he had seen in his own home during the war. “What is this?”
“Several key families in the MCUSA...ambassadors from Africa...Brazil….Mexico…”
“The connection?” Harry asked, leaning over Draco’s shoulder to look at the pictures. Draco caught the faint scent of leather and summer, it was warm and inviting and Draco wanted nothing more than to lean into that warmth after the torture of Astoria’s sudden death and laying her to rest. He let out a slow breath handing the picture over and leaning back into his chair, grey eyes hard on the green eyed woman.
“Supporters of no-maj and wizard marriages and unions,” Lyra’s cherubic face darkened. “We still obliviate no-majs and marriage between us and them is still forbidden. A child born with magic to a no-maj family can’t go home during the holidays once in school, and are forgotten by their own loved ones. Those people are wanting to open the borders, so to speak, to keep these families together.”
“Some want to live in harmony with the no-maj,” Sylvie grunted, adjusting in her chair. “There have been movements to change things, our voices are growing louder but the close-minded jackasses of our higher ups refuse to listen. Our trainer, Agent Leigh Michaels, was the last one killed because she got too close to the case.”
“How so?” Harry asked.
Lyra sighed rubbing her hand over her face, “she fell in love. A no-maj stumbled onto one of our crime scenes because the witch was killed in her apartment in Brooklyn. Neighbors heard the fight and called the non magic authorities even as we got the alerts. Detective Rogers was a sweet man.”
“Was?” Draco asked, accepting the folder from Sylvie and flipping through the pages.
“He was killed too, it caused one hell of a stir.” Sylvie snorted.
“I fail to see how this links to the Ministry.”
“Your new Minister...Minister Granger...she’s a no-maj-born right?”
“A muggleborn? Yeah, her folks are muggles.”
“You can’t honestly think that the Minister is in danger.” Kingsley asked, arching an eyebrow as he eyed the two women.
“We have good intel that the terrorist group who is organizing this is coming over here. The attacks will only escalate.”
The three men regarded the women, who showed no sign of backing down from what they said. They all sat in a stony silence until a resounding boom shook the floors, nearly topping Sylvie out of her chair. All five of them ran to the door to see Aurors picking themselves up off the floor, gathering the papers that had scattered everywhere, and Harry glanced up to see Blaise hauling a disoriented Neville to his feet. “Earthquake?” He asked, hopefully, as he cast a glance to Draco who gave him a flat look.
“There are wards against that, Potter.”
Harry opened his mouth to shoot something back when an alarm sounded and several Patronus’ swarmed the bullpen. The Golden Boy felt a flutter of panic in his chest as he saw an otter swimming through the air right at him. “Harry!” It yelled in Hermione’s voice, spiking up his panic. “Top floor is being attacked! Come quick!”
“Potter, Malfoy, Zabini, Longbottom!” Shacklebolt barked catching their attention, “head to the top floor, secure the Minister and-” He spun to see the Americans booking it out the door and he groaned as another boom shook the floor again. “Merlin-”
“We’re on it!” Harry yelled as he took off down the hall with Draco, Blaise, and Neville on his heels. He shot up a quick prayer to whoever was listening that Hermione would be OK until they got there.
“Do you see them?” Neville yelled as they rounded a corner.
“No!” Harry yelled back, his wand out as his heart pounded in his chest. The run was nothing, but the fear of his friend being hurt and not being there to protect her was killing him. He glanced over his shoulder to see Draco and Blaise keeping pace with them and he felt an odd bit of warmth in his chest at the hard set of Draco’s jaw. In the years since the War, the Slytherin had changed and it was a point of constant distraction for Harry. After his pardon they had both joined the Auror Training Program and both had quickly climbed the ranks with Draco easily finding his spot in Harry’s inner circle, much to Ron’s annoyance. Harry found himself spending some Holidays with Draco, Pansy, Blaise, Nott, and Goyle almost as much as he did with the Weasleys, and with Albus and Scorpius being housemates they came to spend even more time together. Draco had been there through the painful divorce with Ginny and Harry had helped the other man through Astoria’s death.
“Harry, look out!” Draco yelled, making the other Auror snap around as his foot tangled in something laying the middle of the floor.
“Shit!” Harry grunted as he slammed into the wall and went down hard on his knee. “Blood hell!”
“Are you alright?” The blonde asked as he held out a hand.
Harry grunted as he took the pale hand, working to hide his blush and not admitting that it was distracting thoughts of the other man that caused him to go careening into the wall. “I’m good, what the fuck did I trip over?”
Blaise bent down plucking the offending object up off the floor and turning it over in his hands. “Isn’t this that MCUSA Aurors...robe?” He arched a brow, running his thumb over the MCUSA crest.
“What is-” A scream from down the hall made all four men snap to attention and remember why they were running.
“ Protego! ” A familiar voice echoed down the hall.
“That was Hermione!” Harry scrambled to his feet and they booked it down the hall. The door to the Minister’s office was hanging off its hinges and Harry saw lights flashing in the office from spells firing off. “Neville, Blaise when we get in there you get ‘Mione, Abigail, and Padma out of there, Draco and I will take-” A snarl cut Harry off and he watched as a black cloaked figure was thrown from the room, slamming into the wall and sliding down with a wet thud while leaving a smear of crimson on the wall.
“ Confrigo! ” Another voice shouted, pained screams sounding as another snarl ripped through the air. “Can she move?” Harry and the other three men skidded to a halt to see Lyra crouching behind the upturned desk with her hands pressed to Padma’s shoulder as Hermione had her wand out as she crouched next to an unconscious Abigail. Blood streaked the floor and Harry heard a sickening crunching sound as he ran forward to kneel next to his friend.
“Harry!” She gasped, throwing her arms around his neck and hugging him tight.
“Are you alright?” He asked, pushing her back a bit to see her robes ripped and a cut on her cheek.
“I’m...I’m fine. They couldn’t aim their spells, but Padma caught the brunt of a Sectumsempra . They knocked out Abigail and we barely got her behind the desk before more came in.”
“Already on it. Expecto Patronum!” Light burst from the end of Neville’s wand, swirling into a rolling red panda and he crouched down to give it directions. The Patronus bobbed before darting out the door in a flash and he nodded. “The Mediwitches will be here shortly.”
“Um...Potter? We...might have an issue.” Blaise said, his dark eyes fixed on something on the opposite side of the desk, more specifically the point where the sickening crunching sounds originated. Harry’s brow furrowed as he slowly stood up and moved to where Blaise and Draco had stilled with their wands out. Emerald eyes went wide as he saw a figure crouched by a body, the legs jolting with every sickening snap as a powerful jaw chewed it’s way through bone and flesh.
“Bloody hell!” He yelped, “werewolf! Stu- ”
“No!” Lyra screamed as she threw herself between the creature and the three men. “Don’t hurt her!”
“Her? Are you fuckin daft?” Draco snapped, “stand down Auror Rosewood! We need to contain the creature-”
“Who are you calling creature, djolano ?” A raspy voice asked, making Lyra spin around and tear her cloak off, laying it over the shoulders of Sylvie. The woman slowly pushed herself to her feet, her hair a wild mess around her shoulders. She used the dark purple fabric to keep her modesty, the lower part of her face was coated in blood. She glared as several wands were pointed at her and she pushed Lyra behind her, baring her teeth. “Put those little sticks away boys.”
“Don’t move,” Harry growled as he placed himself between the two women and Hermione.
“We just fucking saved your Minister and this is what you do? Fuckin gadje .” Sylvie spat at his feet, her green eyes blazing with her anger.
“For all we know you brought those...people in here.”
“Ungrateful, ignorant little bastards!” Sylvie’s eyes shifted as her face began to twist and change shape.
“Syl stop!” Lyra gasped at her and wrapped around the other woman’s arm.
“You are being taken into custody to answer questions.” Draco scrambled back as Sylvie tried to launch herself at him.
“Syl!” Lyra fumbled as she grabbed the back of the robe and jammed a needle into the woman’s neck. With a soft whimper, Sylvie crumpled to the ground and lay motionless and several sets of eyes landed on the short witch. “Um...I can explain?” She gave a nervous chuckle as a team of mediwitches burst into the room.
Harry blinked as he dared to cast a glance at Draco who looked equally as confused as he felt. “We need to take you for questioning…”
“Yeah...after that I’m not surprised but please...don’t hurt Sylvie. She didn’t...she wasn’t going to hurt you, any of you. She’s rather harmless…”
“I doubt that,” Draco muttered looking at the half eaten corpse on the ground. He flicked his wand and silvery threads of magic shot out to wrap around Lyra’s wrists as Blaise did the same for Sylvie and making sure to bind her mouth as well before he stooped down to scoop her up into his arms. Grey eyes found emerald green and Harry shrugged.
“Let’s get them down to the interrogation rooms and fill in Kingsley. Neville can you stay with ‘Mione?”
“Yes, sure Harry, debrief in an hour?”
Harry nodded as he, Draco, and Blaise left the office with more questions than answers as to what the hell just happened. Harry sighed as he scrubbed a hand over his face and jolted as he felt a cool hand against his shoulder. He looked over to see Draco arching an eyebrow at him and he sighed. “Welcome back to work Draco,” he grunted as Lyra followed after Blaise, her face showing her worry for her bound and gagged companion in the darker mans arms.
“Merlins fucking balls,” Harry groaned as he scrubbed a hand over his face in frustration. He looked through the one-way glass to see Sylvie pacing like a caged animal.
“Have we heard anything from the MCUSA?” Draco stood next to him, a cup of coffee in his hand as his grey eyes tracked each movement the woman made.
“I have no idea, Kingsley and Blaise were the ones working with ‘Mione to contact them.”
“I can’t tell if she is foolish for refusing treatment or brave for forging on.” Draco snorted shaking his head.
“Well she is a Gryffindor.”
“Which always came as a shock to me, she was smarter than the lot of you during school.” The blonde grinned as he nudged Harry with his shoulder.
“Got that right, but she was the bravest witch I had ever met. When we ran from Death Eaters she would always have a plan, and a purse with an expansion charm. Though when she was angry I was ready to Apparate myself to Jupiter to get away from her.”
“She did keep a human alive in a jar for over a year,” Draco laughed softly.
Harry grinned, eyeing Draco from the side. His smile was still strained but the fine lines around his eyes lessened just a tad. The Golden Boy felt a fizzle of pride at making the other laugh, it was a strange feeling but he liked it. Only Hermione really knew the depths of his feelings for Draco, normally just smiling sadly at him while she gave his back a pat, but he knew his feelings for Draco ran past simple friendship. It took him a long time to come to terms with how he felt about the scion of the Malfoy family and it had caused some strain between himself and Ginny, it also didn't help that Harry was a bit of a slag when he was drunk.
“Potter!” Draco snapped, making the darker male blush holty (forever thankful for his warmer skin tone).
“Did you hear a word I just said?” Grey eyes narrowed in annoyance.
Draco folded his arms over his chest and glared, “still a shitty liar.” He tilted his head to the side and emerald eyes followed to see Hermione standing there patiently.
“‘Mione? Why aren’t you at-”
“If you say it Harry I will hex you.” She glared at him, in her arms was a pile of folders in her arms. She had changed a bit since school filling out in the hips and bust due to having her children, though her hair was still the wild, lion’s mane she kept trying to tame back. Her skin was paler than her normal light coffee tone, the freckles across her nose standing out but her chocolate brown eyes filled with fire and determination. She pulled the first file out and held it out to them, “I just got done speaking with President Quahog of the MCUSA, lovely man, bit of an ass.”
“Hush Draco,” she huffed. “Sylannia “Sylvie” Rasputin, first generation American-Born Romani, her father married an American woman from Brooklyn, New York and went to Ilvermorny to finish her schooling. She was chosen by the Horned Serpent and graduated with top marks in Defence Against the Dark Arts, Charms, and Divination.”
“That’s all well and good, but thats not explaining why she was a fuckin wolf ‘Mione.” Harry’s jaw snapped shut at the withering glare she sent him and he heard Draco snickering off to his side and the rustle of papers as he flipped through the folder. “What? How can she possibly be an Auror when she’s a...well a werewolf.”
“I didn’t hear you complaining about Remus being one when he was our teacher. In fact, didn’t you have a huge problem with them sacking him?” Hermione shot back, a brow arching at her friend.
“That was different!”
“Alright Ron ,” She huffed making the male blush and his head snap back to look at the pacing woman in the room. “Americans have a different standard than we do. With our archaic laws they will always be ahead of us. Apparently Agents Rasputin and Rosewood are part of a new program called the Lycan Initiative.”
Draco’s brow furrowed as he looked at Sylvie. “So, she’s a registered Werewolf?”
“Yes she is, and Lyra is her designated handler.”
Sylvie stalked to the window and slammed her palm against it. “I know you’re out there! Where’s Lyra!”
“Syl!” Lyra yelled as she darted down the hall, Neville and Blaise behind her. The shorter woman skidded to a stop and jabbed a finger into Harry’s chest. “You! What did you do with her? She’s not going to hurt anyone!”
Harry’s eyes went wide as he felt the sharp point of her nail dig slightly into his sternum. Another smack to the glass made the shorter witch’s head snapped to the side and she was at the door in a flash. “No wait!”
“ Alohamora! ” Lyra flicked her wand at the door and shoved it open, rushing to her friend. “Syl! Are you alright?”
They watched as the taller of the two crushed Lyra into a hug, “fuck if I’m alright Ly, what about you? They wouldn’t let me see you and they’re keeping me in here like an animal. The last thing I remember, really remember is shifting to take down some fucker flinging spells.”
“I’m so sorry! I had to use the anti-shift potion.”
Sylvie opened her mouth to say something when her forest green eyes snapped over to see Hermione flanked by Harry and Draco. “Minister Granger…”
“Hermione...please. Thank you, for your help and for saving us.”
“How are the other two?” Lyra asked as she pulled away from Sylvie, the two women settling into an attentive pose with their arms folded behind their backs. Sylvie’s stance was more rigid, her eyes darting around the room as if she were looking for an escape route. Her twitchy movements set Harry on edge and he inched closer to Hermione who simply cast him a glare.
“Abigail is concussed but she’ll be fine. Padma will have a scar but because of you two we all lived.” She said evenly, “I have your files on hand now though they arrived later than you did. Your president had tried to send word over before you two arrived but according to him you left earlier than scheduled.”
Lyra and Sylvie had the grace to blush and look away under the Minister’s piercing gaze. “We only wanted them to know us before they read about us on paper.” Lyra said softly.
“We know how my kind are treated here and feared that you would bar us from resources and investigations if you knew. We wanted you to know who we are, that just because I grow fur and bark at the moon every now and again I am a damned good Auror.”
“I understand Agent Rasputin...but werewolves are classified as a level XXXXX creature. The proper registration forms needed to be filled out to allow you entry and they were but you arrived before them. Normally this would have you banned and sent back to the MCUSA.”
“Normally Ma’am?” Lyra asked softly.
“Normally, but you saved myself and my deputies. I’ve decided to grant you some liberties...and given that I was nearly killed I want to know exactly what it is you are doing.”
“Yes ma’am,” Sylvie said with a sharp nod.
“Aurors Malfoy and Potter will be your go-to superiors while you are here in the UK and you will need to be monitored.”
“Hermione?” Harry asked arching a brow at his friend.
“You will be staying at Grimmauld Place during the duration of your investigation.” Silence reigned over the room as the Minister simply shrugged at her childhood friend before looking to the girls, “we will get you settled in and my Aurors will look over your files, which have been sent over.” She dropped the large stack of files into Draco’s arms who grunted softly. “Oh, and Harry, you and Draco are partners now, Kingsley meant to tell you but well...we were attacked.” She waved as she turned to leave the room.
“Well,” Lyra said with a weak smile. “I’m pretty excited. Everyone loves a good sleepover.”
“Lyra…” Sylvie groaned scrubbing a hand over her face.
Djolano- littereally means Mule (I.E. Ass)
Harry groaned as he stepped from the Floo of Grimmauld place, scrubbing a hand over his face and shaking out his hair. He was bone weary from everything that had happened at the Ministry and wanted nothing more than a finger or four of Firewhiskey. He dropped to the couch with a groan as the Floo opened up again and Draco stepped out, brushing the ash from his shoulders. Harry was dumbstruck by the simple elegance of the other man. His hair was a mess from the Floo trip, strands falling to frame the aristocratic cheekbones that graced Draco’s features and Harry’s fingers itched to reach out and brush them back. That thought had Harry kicking himself mentally, Astoria’s ashes had only been cold for six months and he knew that Draco was devastated by the loss of his wife. The couch shifted as Draco dropped next to him and next thing Harry knew he had a lap full of blonde hair and was looking down into storm colored eyes. “Well...hi?”
“You’re warm and I have a headache,” Draco shrugged by way of explanation and shifted more and closed his eyes.
Harry shook his head as his fingers began to thread through Draco’s hair absentmindedly loving the way the silken strands fell between his fingers. “When was the last time you slept?”
“A full night?”
Draco sighed softly, his eyes opening and Harry bit back a concerned sound at the raw pain he saw in them. “It’s been so long Harry...so fucking long. I can’t even sleep in the master bedroom of the townhouse anymore. Hell, I hadn’t stepped foot in the fucking place until last week when I was sorting through all of her stuff.” Draco pushed himself up and covered his face with his hands, his shoulders heaving. “We were able to suppress everything until Scor was born but then….it just came full haul. It skipped so many generations to slam her with everything it had and for what? Because some wanker somewhere, pissed off someone enough to curse them with magic so archaic and absolutely pointless, but deadly?” He bit back a sob as his fingers curled in his hair. “Scor had to watch his mother die, slowly and agonizingly. The only time it went quick was in that last month when she was too weak to fight. We were only married because her family was the only one that would accept a pureblood match like my fucking father wanted. Even from Azkaban, he somehow managed to dictate my life and I went along with it.” A hysterical laugh bubbled it’s way from Draco’s lips as he shook his head. “We may not have loved each other, but we were friends Harry, she was the one I was close to, closer than Blaise or Pansy. And now...now she’s gone.”
“Draco…” Harry reached out, his hand resting on Draco’s upper back and feeling how the other man was trembling. He shifted closer his arm sliding to wrap fully around him.
“And she made me promise, the prat, promise that I would find the happiness that was taken away from me. She was so fucking daft at the end, prattling on about happiness and...and when I came back to the Department I was...I…” Draco sighed, his hand pressed to his chest.
“Draco? It’s alright, just...breathe I really don’t want to have to dump a calming drought down your throat if you start having a panic attack.” Harry tried to joke, but his words were strained and colored with worry for his friend.
“Harry...I...there’s something I need to tell you-” The Floo roared to life and a shrill scream sounded in the sitting room as a blur of dark blue tumbled through the fireplace and crashed hard into the coffee table, startling both men into jumping away from each other though Harry instantly regretted the loss of contact.
“Really Syl? Really?” Lyra sighed as she stepped out of the Floo and brushed her robes down. “This is why I tell you not to go running headlong into the Floo.” She paused as she looked to the two men and waved shyly. “Sorry about that...Syl hasn’t quite mastered the art of Floo travel.”
Harry watched with a mixture of amusement and alarm as Sylvie slapped a hand to the coffee table and hauled herself up into a sitting position. She opened her mouth to say something when she went deathly still, Harry concerned that Lyra had hit her with a silent body binding charm.
“Um...Agent Rasputin?” He asked.
Forest colored eyes snapped to him and he jumped at the intensity of her gaze. “Where are we?”
“Erm…” Harry cast a glance to Draco who simply shrugged and offered absolutely no help. “My home? Grimmauld Place.”
“Your...home.” She arched a brow, “and you raised children here?!” The alarm in her voice sounded as if he suggested keeping a hippogriff in the attic.
“Syl-” Lyra groaned as she clapped a hand to her face.
Harry bristled at the tone in the woman’s voice. “It’s my fucking-no! Don’t!” He yelled as the woman jumped to her feet and ran to the doors, slamming them open with enough force to wake up Walburga Black.
“ TRAITORS! FILTH! TAINTING MY HOME!”
“ Mortsi tu cheeb! ” Silence reigned in the hall and the two men ran out to see Sylvie squaring up to the portrait as she rattled silently in her frame.
“Bloody Hell…” Draco gasped.
“How...we have been trying to silence that bitch for twenty bloody years!”
Syl blinked as she looked around. “That was a new voice...who said that?”
“Over here,” grinning from his frame, Sirius waved happily. The portrait in the house was a bold outdoor scene with his beloved motorcycle and a long stretch of highway behind him. Harry felt the familiar bittersweet ache whenever he saw his godfather. The guilt of his death had subsided over the years but the pain would always be there, he supposed. He knew that Sirius was free of Grimmauld Place unlike the last year of his life, but often came back to talk with Albus and Scorpius, or with Harry. He was there many a late night after auror runs and long, long nights fueled with Firewhiskey and bitterness over his divorce. It wasn’t the same as having the real Sirius with him but the memory kept alive was enough to help alleviate the guilt Harry felt. He watched as Sirius seemed to freeze in his frame as he caught a good look at Sylvie. “Who are you?”
“Agent Sylvie Rasputin of the MCUSA.”
Harry watched as Sirius got off his bike moving closer to the foreground of his portrait. “Stay right there,” he darted off leaving four very confused adults in his wake.
“Care to explain Auror Potter?”
Harry raised his hands, “don’t look at me, Sirius tends to do what he wants.”
“Who’s Sirius?” Lyra asked slipping between the two men to step closer to her friend.
“My...my godfather. He died during the Second War.”
“She’s right here! See, she looks just like you!” Sirius ran back into his frame, a grin splitting his face as his hair moved with the breeze that occasionally ran through the painting. He pulled along a woman behind him. She wore an old timey wedding gown and the wind blew her veil over her face.
“Well I can’t see anything you prat!” The woman gasped as she stumbled over a rock and Sirius caught her around the waist. She pushed herself up and flipped her veil over her face, gasping as her dark eyes landed on Sylvie. “Sweet Merlin’s robes.”
Harry, Draco, and Lyra gaped as they saw a face nearly identical to Sylvie’s looking at them from the portrait. “Sirius?”
Harry groaned at the name as he saw Draco’s lips twitch. “Not a word.”
“Bambi?” Draco’s voice cracked a bit as his grey eyes danced with mirth.
“His dad was Prongs it’s only right.” Sirius laughed raking a hand through his hair. “But back to the thing we have going on. You’re new friend here, Harry, is a Black.”
“Um…” Lyra looked between her friend who was dumbstruck and gaping at the woman in the painting and her best friend. They looked nearly identical except for the woman’s features being sharper and Sylvie’s eyes were green.
“Your eyes,” the woman whispered. “So much like his eyes. Green as the forest and filled with a magic untouched by the wizarding world.”
“Granny Iola...you were the Phuro ….the first after our branch broke from the tree.”
“ Phuro, ” Iola tested the word out and chuckled. “Alexandru always had such interesting words. What is your name?”
“Sylvie...Sylvie Rasputin.” Sylvie was in awe as she looked at the woman. “You’re her...you’re really her. Granny Iola...you died when my da was a kid. I never got to meet you, but because of your journal, I got to know who you were. You’d be proud of da, he married my mom...a gadje woman, always said you wanted your family to marry for love.”
Sirius grinned, “so you really did run off with a gypsy boy then?” He barked a laugh shaking his head. “No wonder why your painting is hiding up in the attic. Just when I thought things couldn’t get weirder, Malfoys running around this house and my godson friends with the Malfoy heir I find a long lost cousin.”
“Magic always comes home.” Sylvie smiled as she shook her head, she turned and her eyes dropped onto Harry again before going hard. “When was the last time you cleaned this house?” She demanded.
“Sylvie….” Lyra groaned scrubbing at her face.
“We pick up after ourselves and our house-elf Mims does the dusting and laundry when the kids are-”
“Again I ask...YOU KEEP CHILDREN IN THIS HOUSE? How are they not fucking insane!” She lifted her wand and swished it, “ accio sage.”
“Sylvie…” Lyra sighed as she shook her head watching as a bundle of sage fly to the other woman’s hand. “Auror Potter...where do you keep your tea? We’re going to need a cup or two while I...explain some things.”
“Um…” He felt a tug and Draco pulled him into the kitchen. “What is she doing?”
“She’s cleansing. It’s...well, it’s old school.” In the kitchen stood Harry’s house-elf, she was on a stool washing the dishes by hand. Harry had found it strange but she had claimed she prefered doing dishes by hand to keep them from breaking. She was a strange one and somewhat reminded the Auror of Dobby occasionally. He had rescued her on a raid a few years back and Kreacher had passed on the duties of head house-elf to her before he died. It also helped that the kids loved her and she enjoyed having all three of the Potter children in the house when James and Lily came over for Harry’s weekend. “Excuse me?” Lyra asked politely, tapping the elf on the shoulder.
“Oh!” Mims spun around, plucking an earbud from one of her ears. “Master Potter! Mims didn’t know you’d be home so early! Mims was just cleaning up after the young Masters Malfoy, Potter, and Lupin.” she tilted her head to the side. “Master Potter brought guests home?”
“It’s ok Mims, we’re going to have two people staying with us while we work on a new case. Can you freshen up the guest rooms on the third floor?”
“Oh yes! Mims will do that!”
The Floo chimed and Harry nodded. “That’ll be their things.”
“Oh we can-”
“Mims has it Miss! Would Masters and Miss like tea before Mims readys the rooms?”
“Oh no,” Lyra broke in with a kind smile. “I can make the tea Mims. Thank you so much though.”
Owlish eyes bounced to Harry, who shrugged and nodded. “It’s alright Mims, after that why don’t you take the night off? We’ll order some take away.”
“Yes Master Potter! The young Masters went off with Master Lupin for the evening to the movies and said they would be back tomorrow afternoon.”
“Thanks Mims,” he watched as the elf bounced off. The doors to the kitchen slid open on her departure and a strange sweet smell drifted in to them. “What is that?”
“It’s sage,” Draco mused as he leaned against a counter, folding his arms over his chest and Harry tried to not watch the pull of the other man’s jumper across his arms and shoulders.
“When I say Syl is old school I mean old school. She’s one of maybe four witches in her clan to use a wand. Otherwise they use wandless magic.”
“It’s hard yes,” Lyra agreed as she set a kettle on the burner and began searching for tea in the cupboards, turning her nose up at the generic tea bags, searching for some loose leaf. “Ever notice how the Romani aren’t part of our society but have always been around and using magic in front of the non-maj without breaking those laws of secrecy and being thrown into prison?”
“It’s because of the Accords,” Draco shrugged, looking completely uninterested.
“The what?” Harry asked.
“It pains me that you are in line for Head Auror and you don’t know the basics of Magical History.” The blonde groaned.
“You sound like Hermione sometimes,” Harry grumbled sliding down in his chair with a pout that Draco certainly did not find endearing on the forty year old man.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if she knew about the Accords.”
“The Merlin Accords!” Lyra broke in before the two could start bickering. “You know Merlin had a twin sister right?”
“Morgana,” Draco snapped, “a very powerful dark witch.” He flicked his wand, summoning the sugar bowl and milk with a muttered spell.
“Merlin prefered order and rules,” Lyra nodded. “Morgana wanted freedom. A war broke out with many people, magical and not dying in the crossfire. Finally the two were sat down and the Accords were struck with Morgana taking her people and leaving entirely. They governed themselves and if they re-joined magical society they have to abide by our rules. It’s why Syl is a registered werewolf.” A crash and a string of curses made the two men jump and Harry start to rise as Lyra calmly poured the tea. “Syl?”
“Goddamn Gadjikane house!”
“I’m working woman!” Came the shout, making Draco and Harry look at each other at the heated words directed to the calm woman sliding out the cups to each of them.
Lyra rolled her eyes fondly, “don’t break anything! Auror Potter is graciously allowing us to live here, and remember what the Minister’s stipulations for us to stay on the case were!” They looked to see a pale hand stick through the door and offer an offending finger before disappearing again. “Love you too!” Lyra laughed as she settled at the table with her tea.
“Erm…” Harry cleared his throat to get her attention. “Are you two…?”
“Syl and I? Gaia no! We’re just really close. We met first year at Ilvermorny, no one wanted to sit with her in the cafe and she was always alone between classes. Between what she is and her last name everyone was terrified of her.”
Harry frowned, “we know what it’s like to have a name paint your whole life for you.” He said softly, emerald green eyes rising up to meet stormy grey.
“I’m sure,” Lyra said softly. “But yours isn't the name of one of the most notorious con men in history.”
“Great uncle Gregori was a madman. Papa tried to hard to keep his name from tainting us.” Syl mumbled as she swept into the room, a trail of pale white smoke flowing behind her. She moved with an unnerving grace and ease around Harry’s kitchen, the two wizards watching her with interest. As she walked around, she wafted the smoke with a pure white feather in her hand and both of the men felt something in the room shift. Sylvie walked to the window and a stilted silence fell over the room, as if the house was waiting for something. Harry watched as she turned her back to the window, the small smoking bowl she had been holding now hovering over her hand as she waved the feather through the smoke. The tendrils of the pure white smoke coiled around her as the electrical crackle of magic washed over the other three people in the room. “ Invoc de puterile luminii, iubirii și familiei pentru a elimina umbrele și durerea. Începeți umbre ale trecutului și nu mai încărcați această casă. Așa că este. ”
Harry and Draco gasped as they felt a warmth wash over them and the house seemed to sigh in bliss and the room grew brighter. “Bloody hell,” Harry said softly, Draco’s mouth hanging open in awe as they watched the woman stamp out the bundle of sage into the bowl.
“Feel better?” Lyra asked holding out a cup of tea to the werewolf who simply glared at her.
“I don’t want any damned tea Lyra.”
“Drink the tea Syl.”
Sylvie huffed as she threw herself into the chair next to Draco. “I’d rather have a coffee.”
“You’re going to drink your tea.” The shorter witch slid it over. “You’re not going to get any coffee until tomorrow. You’re jittery enough without it.” She arched an eyebrow as Syl growled.
“Is she always like this?” Harry asked, concerned about the boy coming home to a growling werewolf a floor up from them.
Sylvie sighed as she rubbed her temples. “I didn’t finish eating his heart.”
Harry and Draco turned wide eyes to the woman, the blonde shifting a bit away as he eyed the woman wearily. “I beg your pardon?”
Lyra frowned, “it’s just one heart Sylvie. You’ll be alright.”
“I didn’t eat what I killed,” Sylvie’s voice was little more than a whisper and she reached out with shaking hands to take the teacup that Lyra slid over to her.
“I know...but you’ll be alright.” Lyra said again turning warm brown eyes to the two wizards. “How much do you know about Romani culture?”
“Not very much,” Draco hummed. “As far as I knew there were no Romani at Hogwarts...and the Dark Lord viewed them on the same level as muggles. They didn’t even participate in the wars.”
“Werewolves in the clan are not viewed the same way you treat the ones in your midst.” Sylvie said softly, not looking up from her tea. “We shift with the moon but some of us are gifted with the ability to bring the wolf forward to protect those around us. I was bit when I was visiting uncle Demetri in the Black Forest when I was nine, and cursed at that same time. The wolf who bit me, he was a vargulf. ”
“A...var-golf?” Harry asked.
“ Vargulf. ” Sylvie sighed, “the wolf who does not eat what he kills is infected with madness. Vargulf literally means ‘mad wolf’. When I change...I remain in control because of a few...alterations Lyra made to the typical wolfsbane potion, it makes it so I can’t infect anyone but I can still control what I do. What she injected into me when I tried to lunge at you is the stopper potion.”
“It literally stops her from changing, locking the wolf away essentially.” Lyra sighed softly. “I don’t use it often, it messes with her memory and...well makes her a bit neurotic.”
“I’m neurotic because I didn’t finish eating that asshole’s heart!” Sylvie growled, her eyes flashing.
“Drink your tea.”
Harry cast a look at Draco, the mans lips pulled into a tight line as he looked at Lyra. “You made changes to the wolfsbane potion?”
“I improved it!” Lyra huffed defensively. “She has control over her mind when she shifts during a full moon now, and with the help of her clan I was able to get my hands on some...erm..nevermind.”
Draco opened his mouth to say something when a loud grumbling sound bounced through the kitchen and Sylvie gave a sheepish smile. “Um...that would be me. I thought I heard something about takeout?”
“Right,” Harry reached into his pocket to pull out his mobile and turn it on. “Thai ok?”
Sylvie’s forest green eyes went wide as her lips pulled into a small smile. “Extra spicy?”
“You’re going to give yourself heartburn...again.” Lyra sighed, “extra spicy for me too.”
“You know what I like Harry.” Draco shrugged sipping his tea.
Harry nodded as he got up to walk outside and place the call when Sylvie stopped him with a hand on his arm. “Yeah?”
“By the way, Auror Potter. This house...is clean.”
“Syl…” Lyra groaned as the werewolf cackled leaving a very confused Harry in their wake who simple shook his head and stepped out of the house.
Invoc de puterile luminii, iubirii și familiei pentru a elimina umbrele și durerea. Începeți umbre ale trecutului și nu mai încărcați această casă. Așa că este.--I invoke the powers of light, love, and family to banish shadows and pain. Begone shadows of the past and burden this home no more. So mote it be.
Phuro-Head of a Familia
Mortsi tu cheeb-hide your tongue
Harry groaned as he stumbled down the stairs, the scent of cooking meats and coffee hitting him with the force of the Knight Bus. His brow furrowed as he pushed open the doors to the kitchen and-
“On your left!”
Instinctively Harry’s hand lifted catching the fluffy biscuit that flew from his left. Warmth from the bread seeped into his hand and he blinked at it for a confused moment.
“That was aimed at Lyra. Nice catch though.” Harry blinked again and looked up to see Sylvie pouring a cup of coffee and tapping it with her wand as she sent it over to the table with a muttered spell. She stood in his kitchen, her hair piled on top of her head and she wore a flattering black crop-top with the words ‘beware I bite’ across her chest and dark blue leggings saying ‘witchy woman’ across the ass. “How do you take it?” She asked, a smirk curling her plump lips as she arched a sharp brow at him.
“Black,” Harry mumbled around the biscuit in his mouth as he sank into a chair eyeing the breakfast spread that was laid out over the table.
“Like I like my men!” Sylvie laughed.
“You’ve never dated anyone black!” Lyra groaned, curling her sleeve-hidden hands around a mug of tea. Her lightly distressed blue jeans were partially hidden by a long kimono with bright yellow flowers all over it and a large purple amethyst hung around her neck, bright against the white tank top.
“For that hunk from yesterday I might be willing to try.”
Harry heard a laugh that sent shivers down his spine and he blinked blearily to see Draco sitting at the table across from him. “How...how the bloody hell are you alive? And here...you left late last night, or this morning.” He eyed the man with narrowed eyes. He looked suspiciously well put together, simple grey slacks and a fitted black button down shirt and a simple jumper with the Slytherin crest over his heart. His hair fell over his shoulder in a loose braid and Harry had to admit to himself that the man looked beautiful.
“It’s going on 9 in the morning. Blaise and Longbottom will be here in an hour with the case files.” Draco arched an eyebrow as he looked the other man over. “Nice pajamas,” he smirked as he took in Harry’s bare chest, biting at the inside of his cheek. The man was sleep mused, his unruly hair seemed to defy gravity and his ever present glasses were slightly crooked as emerald eyes looked dazed and out of focus. He wore a pair of red and gold flannel pants that were slung low on his hips and Draco felt his face heat a bit at the dark trail of hair leading down.
A mug was placed before Harry and it’s coiling scent drifted up to him. He groaned and practically dropped his nose into the liquid. “What in Merlin’s beard is this?” He closed his eyes as his hands curled around the mug.
Sylvie snorted taking the chair next to Draco, “it’s coffee.”
“Sylvie smuggled her own coffee over.” Lyra chirped holding out a plate piled with bacon.
“She smuggled...coffee…” Harry’s brow furrowed as his brain tried to compute what he had just been told.
“You Brits can’t make a decent coffee,” the witch huffed. “This is Cafe du Monde Coffee and Chicory. I need some pep in my step!”
Harry lifted the mug and took a sip, moaning softly at the rich flavor. “I may need to get my hands on this…”
“It’s good right?” Sylvie grinned clearly please with herself.
“Wonderful we have another thing that Harry is going to be having in the office that will drive all of us mad.” Draco rolled his eyes as he cut into his eggs.
“Are you talking about the ‘bop-it’ Ron smuggled in?” Harry grinned as he speared a plump sausage and bit into it.
“You threw it around the bullpen...I thought Shacklebolt would shit kneazels.”
Sylvie howled with laughter only pausing at the look Lyra gave her. “What? What’s with that face?”
“This sounds a lot like the time you swapped out the Head Agent’s seat cushions with whoopie cushions that sang like Donna Summers.”
Harry snorted into his coffee, pulling the mug away and slapping at his chest at the spikes of heat through his core. “You did what?”
“Pretty sure you’re ears are working Auror Potter.” The werewolf snorted, a smirk curling her lips.
Harry snorted a laugh, making a mental note not to let George meet this woman. Breakfast was mostly uneventful, with Draco and Lyra debating the best application for potion ingredients and Harry and Sylvie arguing over spell techniques when taking down a suspect. What had started off as strained settled into a mild friendship much like how the house settled without the dark overhang of dark magic. When Harry thought to remark on it Sylvie had simply shrugged. “Houses are like people. They have memories and pains that shape them into what they are. From what I understand 90% of the Blacks were insane as fuck and it seeped into the foundation.”
“You’re a Black,” Harry pointed out.
“I’m a Rasputin,” Sylvie sniffed as she got up and began clearing plates. “I looked at the tree. I saw that Granny Iola was blasted away. ‘Long with your Sirius. His name’s proudly displayed though.” She nudged Draco with her elbow as she walked by.
“Mother’s the last living Black who didn’t piss off Aunt Walburga. Granted the woman was absolutely mad.” Draco chuckled as he stood up, flicking his wand to send the dishes to the sink and earning a glare from Sylvie as the woman set up to wash them by hand. A moment later the Floo chimed and the blonde arched an eyebrow at Harry who hadn’t moved from his seat.
“What?” Harry asked.
“Are you planning on working in your pajamas?” Grey eyes danced over the golden expanse of his bare chest and Harry had to fight back the flood of arousal and the urge to squirm.
“Right...I’ll be right back.” He trudged up the stairs to his room. When he came back down he found his sitting room looking like a tornado tore through it. “Bloody hell.” Papers were everywhere and Blaise and Draco were missing. “Where’s Draco and Zabini?”
Neville lifted his head from the file he was looking at, “they went to go and get the rest of the files mate. We’re in for a long one.”
“There you are!” Sylvie seemed to materialize to his left making him jump as a file was shoved into his hands.
“Wha-” He turned his head as he heard a crack and se was across the room rifling through files. She was gone with another pop and made Neville jolt as she dropped more files onto his lap. She popped away again, stopping by Lyra who simply held her hand up, unfazed, and taking the next pile. Harry blinked, feeling a headache encroaching as Sylvie popped again now ending up near another pile by the window.
“Auror Potter?” She asked as she braced her hands on her hips looking around the room. “Can we shrink things in here? I want to be able to spread out so we can look through the files.” With another pop she ended up on his right this time and he let out a small groan. “Granted no one could use the Floo...can’t have eyes peeping in on an active and open investigation.”
Harry’s thoughts turned to his kids (even including Scorpius in that sentiment) and he shook his head. “The kids don’t need to see this, we saw enough shit growing up, they don’t need to see any of that.” He swallowed remembering the horror show that was the pictures Sylvie and Lyra had showed them the other day.
“There’s a closed door on the third floor next to Syl’s room. Can we use that?” Lyra asked sweeping her wand and gathering up the piles.
His brow furrowed as he tried to think of what room it was. “The kids hardly go up to the third floor...that might be better.” He nodded slowly watching as piles of papers drift past him. The four of them went up the stairs and stopped at the door. Harry glared at the door as he racked his brain before sighing and looking at an empty portrait on the wall. “Sirius?”
“Hey Bambi,” Sirius strolled into the frame leaning against the fence.
“I really wish you would stop calling me that. I’m forty for crying out loud.”
“Not a chance in hell Bambi. Now what do you need? I’m supposed to be heading over to Hogwarts.”
“What room is this?”
“Bat shit mums room. Why?”
“Need a place to work the case.” Sylvie drew out her wand and tapped the door. “ Alohamora ” The door swung open and she disappeared inside. Before the other three could go into the room Sylvie appeared in the doorway, her forest green eyes wide. “What the hell was wrong with this woman?” She gasped, gripping the doorframe. “I cleansed this place and it still feels like fucking Rockford.” She blew a strand of her hair from her face and nodded. “C’mon boys...let’s clean house!”
A few hours later, Harry groaned as he sprawled out on the floor. “I’m done, I can’t….if I have to look at one more crime scene photo I might vomit.” He grunted as he felt the toe of a boot dig into his side and he swatted at it.
“C’mon Potter, we need to get somewhere.” Draco sighed nudging him again.
Harry groaned again as he begrudgingly accepted Draco’s hand and let the taller man haul him up. “We’ve been at this for hours now and the only connection we have is that everyone who was killed supported the MCUSA movement to open doors for muggleborns and families to stay together. We have no connection that can be had with the attack on Hermione.”
“Who may not have even been the target,” Blaise muttered as he leaned against the wall watching Sylvie flit around the room, pinning things to the wall. “Several departments were attacked and the Floo in the Atrium blown out.”
“The MCUSA headquarters were never outright attacked,” Lyra sighed holding up a paper as Sylvie blew past her to pin it to the wall and connecting a string to the points.
“The President isn’t no-maj-born or a halfblood. Minister Granger is a no-maj-born. And in a position of power normally held by a pure-blooded Witch or Wizard.” Sylvie muttered as she began pinning pictures up to create a timeline. Neville stood at her side, his eyes bouncing over each picture as she put it up. “Lyra was Ambassador Reyes before or after Mr. Bohatu?”
“After.” Lyra nodded as she shuffled papers around spreading them out over the hardwood floor and making notes.
Sylvie reached out a hand to move pictures around when a hand wrapped around her wrist. She glanced to Neville as he pointed to a spot on a picture. “What’s that?”
“Over exposure?” She asked, “something in the development process. No-maj use it to explain ghost photos all the time.”
“Wizarding photos don’t overexpose.” He grabbed all the pictures that had that same smudge from the wall and moved to the center fo the room. “Shove over,” he mumbled as he nudged Harry and Draco to the side.
“Hush,” he knelt down and spread the photos out, Blaise hovering at his shoulder. “See? It all connects. I can’t...make it out though, there’s things missing.”
“It looks like a...circle?”
“I can’t tell if you are a drabarno or just really bad at looking for clues.” Sylvie shook her head as she crouched down and picked up a picture. “They’re over exposures. Our curse-breakers didn't find anything when they were looking over the crime scenes. There was no magic left.”
“And that didn’t strike you as odd? Anywhere a curse has been unleashed it leaves a signature...a trace.” Draco arched an eyebrow at her.
Sylvie glared at him, her lips pursed. “Of course it did. But-”
“Master Potter!” Mims cracked into existence right behind Sylvie making the woman jump.
“Shitfuckbitchcocksonofawhore!” She yelped, papers exploding around her as she clutched a folder to her chest. “Warn a bitch will ya?” She snapped glaring down at the elf.
“Mims is sorry Miss! Mims just be wanting Master Potter to know that the young Masters are home.” She held out two envelopes as well, “these also came Master Potter, Master Malfoy.”
“Thanks Mims.” Harry took the letters, holding Draco’s out to him as he tore into his letter and groaned. “Shit...We’re going to Diagon Alley today! I completely forgot.”
“School starts in a week,” Draco said softly as he scanned his own letter. “I...I’d almost forgotten. Scor he needs…”
Harry reached out and took Draco’s shoulder gently. “Hey it’s alright. Come with us, it’ll do you some good to get out.”
“Dad! Where are you?” Albus’s voice drifted through the door.
“Uncle Harry?” Teddy’s voice followed his sons and Harry pulled Draco out of the room and into the hall.
“Hey guys,” Harry reached out to ruffle his son’s hair who scowled at him.
“Daaaadddd.” Albus ducked away, pouting as he tried to smooth his hair down.
“Dad...what are you doing here?” Scorpius asked, identical eyes finding each other and Draco smiling at his son a bit sadly.
“Hey son.” The younger Malfoy rushed forward throwing his arms around the elder and hugging him tight. “I’m alright son.” He whispered, and offered a smile to his cousin and Albus. “Teddy, Albus.”
“Hey cuz,” Teddy gave him a lopsided grin, his long ombre styled hair twisted around as his blue/green eyes glittered. “Just dropping the kids off before I head to the shop.”
“Hey! We’re not kids.” Albus pouted.
“Are to squirt. George says stop by when you come shopping. He’s got something for all the kids before they head back.” With a wink he disapperated with a pop making the two men look at eachother.
“I don’t like the sound of that,” Harry laughed.
“It’s alarming that’s for sure.”
The door to the room opened behind them and Lyra popped her head out, “Aurors we...oh....hello.” She smiled softly to the boys who gaped at the curvaceous witch. “My gods you both look like mini versions of your dads! Sylvie come look at these two!” she called, reaching back to drag the other woman out.
“Dad?” Albus asked arching a brow up at Harry.
“Albus, meet Agent Lyra Rosewood and Agent Sylvie Rasputin. They’re going to be staying with us on an investigation. They’re Aurors from America.” Harry watched as the boys eyes went wide and they rushed to the two women.
“You’re really Aurors from America?” Albus asked, bouncing visibly in his spot.
“Wicked! What’s it like over there?” Scorpius grinned up at Sylvie.
“The same as over here I imagine.” She mused as she knelt down brushing her hair back from her face. She took each of their hands and turned them palm face up, forest green eyes tracking over the lines in their hands. Behind her Lyra groaned slapping a palm to her face.
“Hush Lyra. I’m working.” She looked first at Albus, her nails tracing the lines of his hand. “Good lines, strong, long life line you might have luck on your side kid. Faded love line, that will become stronger once you figure out who is for you. Don’t worry so much about living up to expectations, you’re your own person and you’ll do something great so long as you keep that smile.” She winked at the blushing boy who looked at her in awe.
Draco glanced at Harry who was watching the witch with his lips pursed. “Harry?”
“If she starts spouting about doom and death I’m going to have some serious Divination class flashbacks.” He muttered.
“And you,” Sylvie moved over to Scorpius and took his hand in hers, cradling his palm. “Oh yes, another strong lifeline, must be tied to your friendship with Albus here. Your love line is more visible. Someone has caught your eye already little star?” She winked at him as Scorpius’s pale face turned red with his blush. “Ah to be young and in love.”
“You so are!” Albus teased, nudging his friend who blushed harder.
Lyra gave a helpless smile to Draco and Harry, “she does this with every new person she meets…”
“She didn’t with us.” Blaise arched a brow as he leaned against the doorframe looking at the kneeling woman.
“That’s because all of you have already lived your lives, I have little to impart to you but young minds...young minds need to be moulded, guided. They will grow into something spectacular.”
“Bit barmy that one is.” Harry muttered, hissing as he felt Draco’s elbow in his ribs.
“Ass!” Sylvie coughed into her hand, her own green eyes meeting his as they glared at each other.
“Sylvie!” Lyra groaned as she hauled the woman up. “Oh stop your whining they’re going to toss us out of here if you don’t shape up.” She snapped at the glaring werewolf, not noticing the confused looks from the men.
“Um...she didn’t say anything.” Neville pointed out making Lyra blush hotly.
“You’re a Legilimens,” Draco said softly looking at the shorter witch.
“I...yes.” She sighed, “I passed with flying colors in Potions, Herbology, Creature studies, and Transfiguration at Ilvermorny and my family have always had talented Legilimens. It helps me manage Sylvie’s condition as well to ensure the potion mixtures are working properly and that she isn’t a threat to anyone or anything around her. What, did you think I was just her handler?” She gave the four surprised men a cheeky grin and the two boys laughed.
“Dad, can they come with us to Diagon Alley? Everyone would get a kick out of them.” Albus asked looking up at Harry.
“Please!” Scorpius begged, his grey eyes wide.
“Oh,” Lyra said softly. “No...no we wouldn’t want to intrude on family time-”
“Nonsense, you’re in the UK, first time I’m assuming right?” Blaise said, watching them both nod. “Then you have to see what the Wizarding World has to offer you here and see how different it is from the States.”
Draco arched a brow at his friend, “since when do you go shopping in Diagon Alley?” He smirked, catching the withering glare that was cast his way and caught the hand motion the other made at him behind the witches backs.
“We wouldn’t want to burden you, we can stay and work on the case.”
Harry shook his head, “no, let’s all go together. It’ll do us some good to all get out and learn to operate as a team. Last thing I need is Kingsley on my ass because I can’t work on a team.”
“Again,” Neville snickered.
“Alright alright, har har. So funny, you git. Boys go get ready, we’ll Floo there and meet Ginny and the others.” Harry pushed the laughing boys to the stairs and shook his head. “Meet in the sitting room in an hour?”
“Sounds good Auror Potter.” Lyra smiled, taking Sylvie’s hand.
“You know..since we’re in close quarters we can probably call each other by first name.”
“Of course, Harry.” The smaller woman beamed up at him.
“I think you just made her century,” Sylvie laughed.
“Sylvie!” Lyra glared shoving the laughing woman forward.
Draco arched a brow as he watched the two disappear into their rooms and he saw Blaise looking longingly at Sylvie’s door. “Wow Blaise, look any harder you might cause something to happen like when we were children.”
Harry barked a laugh as he shook his head, “C’mon gents, lets let the ladies get themselves ready.” He lead the way back down the stairs.
An hour later found the small group in the Leaky Cauldron, the four men in their red Auror’s robes, Lyra and Sylvie wearing their own robes, and the boys bouncing beside them in their muggle clothes of jeans, T-shirts, and jumpers that Molly had knitted them. The boys had each taken one of the witches by the hand, eager to show them off with Blaise and Neville rushing after their respective godsons and Harry and Draco bringing up the rear of the small group.
“They’re quite taken with them.” Draco mused as he walked, his head held high and hands folded behind his back.
“Sylvie and Lyra?”
“Mhm,” Draco chuckled. “Our jobs don’t nearly seem as cool unless they’re coming from someone else.”
“They get bored listening to us talk about work, at least they don’t say they shoot spell from horseback.” Harry grinned as Draco rolled his eyes and shoved at him with his shoulder. The darker male suddenly had the urge to wrap his arm around the blonde and hold him close. Harry swallowed that urge down and rubbed the back of his neck, he knew Draco wasn’t as straight as he seemed, but also knew the man had just lost his wife. He’d had feelings for the prat since they were kids, fighting in a war that wasn't theirs and pawns of men bigger than themselves.
“Harry!” Draco suddenly yelled, slapping a hand to his stomach and making the darker male grunt.
“Merlin’s balls Malfoy, what the fuck?” He grumbled rubbing at the spot. “Your fingers are like the ends of a whip.”
“I’ll show you a whip Potter, did you hear what I bloody said?”
Harry tried not to let that thought get too far away from him as he shook his head. “No I didn’t.”
“Course you didn’t,” Draco huffed. “How you passed all your N.E.W.Ts to get into the Auror program I have no idea. I was saying that perhaps after this the boys can stay at the cottage until school. I don’t want them stumbling into the room where we have the case files out. Mother would love the company I’m sure.”
“Yeah...yeah that sounds good.” Harry nodded, “I don’t want Albus seeing those pictures, Lily or James either.” He shoved his hands into his pockets, his eyes on the group in front of them as Scorpius and Albus stopped in front of a shop to point something out to the two American witches.
“How are things going with that? Albus being separated from his siblings I mean.”
Harry sighed shaking his head, “he hates it...but he just can’t seem to connect with James, not like when they were kids. I know him being sorted into Slytherin had a lot to do with it, I’m glad he has Scor though. Also glad that we put our past behind us.”
“Me too,” Draco sighed, running his fingers through his hair and upsetting the pale blonde strands. “We were stupid in school, then the war happened...I don’t want Scorpius to repeat my mistakes.”
“He’s already doing loads better than you did. He’s got a good role model Draco.” Harry smiled as he reached out to give Draco’s arm a squeeze.
“Harry!” Hermione’s voice broke out over the crowd and he turned to see his oldest friend weaving her way through the crowd. The witch bounced up to them, her hair left in its natural curls and her smile bright. “Draco, glad to see you too.”
Draco bent and pressed a kiss to her cheek and nodded. “You too Hermione, glad to see that yesterday's attack didn’t get you down.”
“Are the boys here? I didn’t see them.”
“They’re with Sylvie, Lyra, Neville and Blaise.” Harry looked around spying them in front of the pet shop. “There they are.”
“I’m really glad to see that you are all getting along. I know I sort of opened your home for you-”
“I hadn’t noticed...ow!” Harry laughed as her fist slammed into his shoulder and he rubbed the spot. “It’s fine ‘Mione, but the boys are going to go stay with Narcissa while we work the case. They’ll be in Hogwarts soon but we don’t want them seeing the pictures in the files.”
“Have you discovered anything?”
Draco shook his head, “Neville may have found something but we don’t know until we look into them more.”
“Mum!” Hugo yelled as he ran up, Rose on his tail as they weaved through the crowd. “Hi uncle Harry! Mr. Malfoy.”
“Uncle Harry!” Rose cried as she launched herself at her godfather.
“We had thought we lost you, my Hermione.” A deeply accented voice broke through and Harry grinned.
“Viktor! I didn’t know you were back.” He shook hands with the larger Seeker.
“Good to see you Harry, I had promised Hugo and Rose I’d come back to see them off to school with Hermione.” The man grinned, his arm wrapping around her waist “Though I will actually not be leaving any more.”
Hermione grinned, “Viktor is staying in London, he’s actually taking over for Madame Hooch at Hogwarts.”
“Bloody hell!” Harry laughed, “welcome to England then Professor Krum.”
“Daddy!” A shrill voice called out and Harry grunted at the impact to his midsection as a bundle of flaming red hair crashed into him.
“Hello Princess,” he grinned scooping the girl up and spinning her around before he kissed her cheek.
“Your beard tickles!” Lily laughed as she pushed his face away and scrubbed at her cheek. “Jamie! I found Dad!”
“Yeah I see that,” James rumbled as he strolled up his hands shoved into his pockets, his copper colored hair styled into submission. Harry sighed slightly at his oldest, puberty not doing him any favors with his mood swings. “Hey dad, Mr. Malfoy.”
“James,” Draco inclined his head.
“Good to see you Jamie,” Harry smiled at his oldest, only to receive a scowl in return. “Where’s your mum?”
“I’m right here Harry,” Ginny huffed as she folded her arms over her chest. “You’re late.”
Harry sighed again, “no we’re not Gin. We-”
“We said noon, it’s 12:30. We all have other things we have to get done today before the kids go to school.”
Harry scowled at his ex wife, the pain of their divorce crashing over him once again. They had burned too hot and too fast, thinking that with each next child it would help fix whatever was wrong with their marriage. Harry loved his kids more than life itself and wouldn’t trade them for anything but he often wondered what good it did to keep trying at a marriage that would have never worked. He shook his head as a cool hand landed on his arm and he looked to see Sylvie standing next to him, a comforting look in her dark green eyes and the question clear there. He shook his head and she shrugged.
“Who’s she?” Ginny asked, her own eyes raking over Sylvie and taking in the dark blue robes and landing on the MCUSA crest on her chest. “American?”
Sylvie arched a single eyebrow, her hand moving to brace on her hip as she cocked it out, tapping her nails to her thigh. “Got a problem with it gaje ?” The werewolf smirked, “I’m a gypsy as well if that helps anything.”
“Sylvie!” Lyra admonished, smacking the woman on her flank. “I swear to the gods we can’t take you anywhere!”
Sylvie bristled, “I’m over here getting the stank eye and you’re yelling at me? Oy-fuckin-vey.”
“Sylvie and Lyra, this is Ginny my ex wife. Gin this is Sylvie Rasputin and Lyra Rosewood, American Aurors that are helping us on a case. They’re staying at Grimmauld while we work the case.”
“When were you planning on telling me? Or are you making it a habit to bring random people around our son?” She cast a scathing look over Draco and the blonde glared at her.
“Gin, stop. Let’s not do this now, yeah? This is supposed to be a fun day with the kids.” Harry hissed, eyes glancing around for a hint of a reporter wanting to capture the latest ‘Potter Family Row.’
“Fine.” Ginny bit out, “did you at least remember to bring the list for Albus? I already have Lily and James’.”
“Yeah I got it.” Harry growled as he set Lily down, taking her hand as she chatted happily with Lyra. “Where’s Ron.”
“Behind you mate,” Harry turned and laughed as he embraced his friend, thumping him on the back. Ron pulled back spying Draco and his lips thinned into a hard line. “Malfoy.”
“Weasley,” Draco nodded.
“Dad! They have a new broom out! And I’m trying out for the Quidditch team this year,” Albus yelled as he ran up. “Oh, hey mum, Jamie.” His face softened for his sister as he hugged her. “Hey Lil, ready to get your robes and everything?”
“Yeah!” Lily let go of her father’s hand to take her brothers, grinning up at him.
“Well, let’s get this party started shall we?” Hermione smiled as she tangled her fingers with Viktors, resultuly ignoring the dirty look that Ron gave her and Viktor.
The group began to walk, Harry falling into step with Draco and shivering when their hands brushed with every other step. He knew he was in for a long day, but having Draco there made the day seem a bit brighter. He caught the blonde smiling from the corner of his eye and he turned his head to return the smile, nudging him gently as they caught up with their sons and settled into easy conversation with the group.
Drabarno: male reader/fortune teller
gadje: non-gypsy woman
“Does Albus really need new robes Harry?” Ginny asked as she eyed her middle child, “we can transfigure some of Jamie’s old-”
“Jamie doesn't play Quidditch Gin, as much as you want him too he was never interested in it. Since Al’s trying out for the Slytherin team he needs some new robes and he’s also grown a couple of inches this summer.” Harry muttered as he looked through the robes on the rack. The group had split off in the main shops, Hermione and her brood taking the books, Neville taking Sylvie, Lyra and Blaise to the potions store to get the kids what they needed, and Harry and Draco going with Ginny, Ron, and their kids into the robes shop with plans to meet for lunch.
“And Malfoy is here why?” She asked, folding her arms over her chest and glaring at the blindingly blonde head of hair on the other side of the shop.
“Aside from the fact that we’re mates and his son is best friends with ours? I can’t possibly think why he wouldn’t come with us. Honestly Gin, we’re grown now we need to leave that shit in the past.”
“He took the Dark Mark Harry,” Ron shook his head as he leaned against the wall behind them watching his friend. “Not to mention broke your nose and let his batshit crazy aunt torture Hermione-”
“He didn’t let Bellatrix do anything Ron, she was mental.” Harry growled, feeling a tension headache come on as they tried to run through the same arguments when he started bringing Draco around. “He’s changed, I’ve changed, we’ve all changed. Does this argument have something to do with the fact that Draco is now my partner?” He shot a glance at Ron.
“I can’t believe Shacklebolt put you and Malfoy on the same team. I would have at least thought he would have put you with Neville.”
“Neville and Blaise have been partners for years now Ron, you know this. They make a good team and have cracked some of the hardest cases we’ve had come through the department. Draco and I actually made a good team during training but because I requested to be teamed up with you they teamed him up with Lee.” Harry cast a sharp glance at Ron, “we’re moving past the war Ron, and it was nearly fifteen years ago. You’re my best friend and Jamie’s godfather but you have to get over the fact that yes I hang out with Slytherins, your nephew is one remember that.” He pulled a couple of robes off the rack and walked over to where Scorpius and Albus were sitting with Draco and trying on boots. “Go try this one on Al,” he said softly shooing his son off to the fitting rooms.
Draco glanced back to see both Weasleys giving him the death glare and he arched a brow at Harry. “Good talk?”
The darker male sighed, scrubbing a hand over his face and adjusting his glasses again. “I knew telling Ron that you were assigned as my partner would stick in his craw but what did he expect? Me to go at it alone?”
“I’m surprised you lasted as partners as long as you did.” Draco hummed watching as the tailor spoke quietly with his son. “You are both brash and let your bravery guide you into extremely dangerous situations.”
“I do not!”
“Oh yeah? What about that house elf mill in Cambridge?”
“The dark magic call in Nottingham?”
“Well yeah but-”
“How about the murder in Birmingham?” The blonde smirked at the exasperated noise from the brunette.
“Alright alright I get it. I shouldn’t have opted out of partners with you when we graduated training.”
“Glad you’re finally seeing it my way Potter.”
“Daddy look!” Lily called out making Harry turn his head to see her standing proud on the dias with her arms out.
He had to bite back the smile as he saw her with a set of Hufflepuff robes on. “We don’t know what house you’re in yet Lily-bear. We’re just here to get you the basic black robes.”
Lily pouted, “but Daddy they’re yellow!”
“I know sweety, how about we get you a nice yellow dress for your first day as a compromise?” He heard Draco snickering behind him and sent a glare over his shoulder at the man.
“Hello Harry,” a dreamy voice drifted to the man making him jolt and spin around to spy a mop of dirty blonde hair.
“Merlin’s tits Luna you need to stop sneaking up on me like that.” He groaned.
“Auntie Luna!” Lily called jumping from the dias and running to embrace the woman.
Luna smiled as she wrapped her arms around the girl and hugged her tight. “Hello my sweet, you look lovely in Hufflepuff colors.”
“Daddy says I have to wait before we can get these robes.” She pouted making Harry hide a smile behind his hand.
Luna looked over and caught sight of Draco, offering him a soft smile. “Hello Draco,” she nodded to him.
“Good to see you Luna, mother loved your latest gardening tips in the Quibbler.”
Luna’s smile widened and she nodded. “You can actually thank Lorcan for that, he’s doing really well in herbology and that’s been helping Lysander in potions.”
“Speaking of, where are the boys? Are they with Rolf?”
“Oh no, Rolf had to work today, they should be around here somewhere.” She turned and nodded waving over to where her twins were now talking with Albus and Scorpius. “There they are, we’re very sorry we haven’t been able to do much with you this summer. Rolf had us over at the dragon sanctuary in Romania to catalogue the newest dragon breeds.”
“It’s alright, Al was missing Lysander tho.” Harry’s eyes traveled to where his son was smiling shyly at Lysander, while the twins told the boys about their summer. “Do you want to join us for lunch? We’ve got pretty much everyone together, plus some new faces that I’m sure would love to meet you.”
“Oh, that sounds lovely.” Luna gave him a dreamy smile as she brushed her hair behind her ear. “I just have to pay for the boys’ robes.”
Twenty minutes later the adults paid for their purchases as their kids chatted happily. Luna and Ginny catching up and Harry thanking every god there was that his ex wife’s attention was diverted away from him and his partner. He wasn’t one to toss his friends under the bus but to give himself a reprieve from his exs snide remarks or weary looks he would willingly throw Luna at her, not that the blonde minded. Harry kept Lily’s hand tucked into his as Albus chatted with Scorpius and the twins and James walked with Ron. Draco was on Harry’s other side, quite as always but there was a peace about him that settled Harry as well. His emerald eyes scanned the crowd and he caught sight of the colorful Auror robes of the American witches and waved them over. Introductions were given, with Lyra looking a little starstruck at meeting the wife of Newt Scramnaders grandson and Albus introducing Sylvie to the twins.
“Now we just have to find Hermione and we can go-”
“ EXPULSO! ” A boom shook the alley and Harry instinctively pulled Lily behind him as Draco’s hands shot out for their sons as Ron pulled his sister and James behind him.
“What the hell was that?” Sylvie barked, her fingers going to her wand holster and pulling the slim bit of wood out and stepping in front of Luna and her boys.
“What are the chances of two attacks in two days?” Harry asked earning droll looks from his partner and Blaise and Neville.
“ DIFFINDO! ” More screams sounded and Harry growled.
“Luna, Ginny take the kids back into Madame Milkins. Ron go find Hermione and make sure your kids are alright and get her off the street. Send a Patronus to Kingsley and let him know we need backup. Sylvie, I want you and Lyra to go with Blaise and Neville to start clearing streets, keep your wands out and send up sparks if you run into trouble.” Sylvie and Lyra saluted as they slipped into the crowd with the two men and Harry sent his kids along with Luna before turning to Draco. “You ready partner?”
“Don’t do anything stupid Potter,” Draco smirked as he drew out his own wand. They moved through the crowd, directing people into the shops and working to stay calm in the panic. A flash of color to his left had Draco spinning around, coming face to face with an elaborate jester mask done in white and blue diamonds and bouncing bells.
“ Protego!” Draco yelped falling back and flinging up a shield spell to deflect the cutting curse that was thrown at him. He flicked the spell away and snapped his wand forward. “ Patrificus Totalus! ” He watched as the robed and masked figure fell back. Flashbacks of cold metal masks and flowing black robes flashed in the blondes mind eye and he felt the cold trickle of fear down his spine.
“ Stupify!” Harry saw the second figure advancing on his partner. The figure spun around in a whirl of bells and bright red and white porcelain. “Draco?” He yelled.
Draco shook his head and turned to see Harry looking at him and he waved him off. “I’m fine! Can you see who’s leading the attack?”
“No! What the bloody hell is up with dark wizards and bloody fucking masks?”
“If i knew I’d tell you!” Draco spun flicking his wand and wordlessly sending another person, this time in a deep green, goblin mask, into a pile of crates. Blue sparks shot up and Harry and Draco ran in the direction they came from. They slowed to a stop as they saw Sylvie guiding people with Neville and Blaise and Lyra firing off spells at the attackers. The tiny witch packed a punch, and each spell was perfectly executed.
“On your right! Patrificus Totalus! ” Sylvie yelled and Harry saw someone falling forward on his right, they crashed face first into the ground. The sound of something shattering as the masked person fell. “You Brits have no idea how to fight dirty!” The werewolf cackled as she ducked a spell and rolled forward, bringing her boot down with a sickening crack into her attackers knee.
“On your six!” Lyra yelled as she vaulted over her attacker and caught him with a binding spell watching him fall off to the side. “That’s five for me!”
“They’re nuts,” Draco muttered as he ducked a person wearing a grotesque skull mask charging at him.
“ Expelliarmus! Stupify! ” Harry shouted watching as skull mask was knocked backwards.
“You really need to learn some new spells Potter!” Sylvie grunted as she was kicked back landing into a pile of owl cages. “Oh it’s on now cocksucker!” Her eyes flashed gold as she hauled herself up.
“Sylvie no! Too many civilians!” Lyra barked bringing her elbow into the solar plexus of the person behind her, slamming the heel of her boot on his instep and snapping her head back into his mask making it crack. “Ow…” She shook her head rubbing the back of it.
“Your hard head comes in good for something!” Sylvie laughed as she launched herself into the fight again.
A shout made Harry’s head snap to the direction it came from. “That was Ron!”
“He’s with the Minister right?” Blaise yelled as he snapped a door shut and hit it with a shielding spell. “Go we have this! Make sure she’s alright!”
Harry nodded and he took off with Draco hot on his heels. They flung spells and dodged around incoming spells, they saw a few of the other Aurors around and so far only a few casualties. Harry saw the sign of Flourish and Blotts and felt his heart in his throat as he saw both Hermione and Krum deflecting spells. He caught sight of Ron sprawled out on the ground behind Hermione, and Hugo and Rose banging on the window of the shop. Two masked people advanced on Hermione and Krum, the large seeker throwing himself in front of Hermione and being taken down by an Unforgivable.
“Viktor!” Hermione screamed, “ sectumsempra!” The one holding the unforgivable flew back in an arc of blood and the second wizard snarled behind his mask.
“Filthy mudblood! You defile our world,” he yelled raising his wand.
Harry and Draco skidded to a stop on either side of Hermione and Draco froze at the voice. He slid more in front of her as Harry took point, Draco’s protective spells being stronger than the Saviour’s, while Harry excelled at the offensive spells. A flash of red caught his eye and he saw Neville and Blaise appear behind the remaining figure. Lyra popped into sight with Thomas and Finnigan flanking her and Sylvie brought up the other side with the Patil sisters, effectively boxing the dark wizard in.
“By order of the DMLE place your wand on the ground and your hands behind your head!” Harry barked, something wild flashing in his eyes. “Surrender yourself and we will see what can be done in light of your crimes.”
The masked figure started to laugh, a cold, unhinged sound that froze Draco to the core. The figure lifted his wand and instantly ten others were trained on him as dark clouds rolled over head. “For the rise of the pure!” He hissed on the end of a maniacal cackle. “ Sanguinem castitate!” Dark red smoke shot from the end of his wand and coiled into the sky, forming a raging dragon. The dragon curled in on itself and forming a circle, a black wand spearing through its center and white tendrils wrapping around the wand. The ten Aurors watched in horror as the wizard lifted a gloved hand to his painted mask and pulled it off. “The blood will be pure once more,” Dolohov’s haggard face grinned manically at them as he lifted his wand to press to the underside of his jaw. “He’s waiting for you,” a flash of green and Dolhov fell back, his mask shattering as it hit the cobblestone, and a soul shattering scream sounded from Lyra.
“Lyra!” Sylvie screamed as she vaulted over the old deatheater’s body and rushed to her friend that had fallen into Finnigan’s arms. Soon the team of mediwitches swarmed the injured, taking those who needed it to St. Mungos. Harry saw a small team cart off Ron and Lyra, Neville and Blaise taking a distraught Sylvie with them to follow after their friends. The remaining Auror teams slowly moved together, the Patil sisters talking quietly to Draco as he looked with horror up at the new terrifying symbol in the sky. Stormy grey eyes, reflecting the very sky, met emerald green and Harry saw the terror in those depths as the first crack of thunder rolled across the sky.
Harry rounded the corner of St. Mungos scrubbing a hand through his hair, he had spent the last hour with the cleanup crew down in Diagon with Dean and Seamus. He caught mops of red hair and saw the Weasley Matriarch moments before she crushed him into a rib cracking hug. “I’m alright mum, how’s Ron.” He asked hugging her back.
“He was hit with a modified stinging hex that reacted badly with the spell damage he’s been suffering from on your last raid.” She gave Harry a look that made him swallow back an apology. The years had been kind to her, her flaming hair streaked liberally with silver and her eyes still warm as ever, “don’t go feeling guilty. You know Ron would take those and a thousand more for you.” She shook her head, “but who would do this? Didn’t we suffer enough under You-Know-Who?”
Harry tightened his arms around her. “I know mum, I know. The kids?”
“At the Burrow with Bill and Fleur, Arthur is in with Ron right now I was just coming out to check on Albus and Scorpius.” She motioned to the side and Harry turned to see his son sitting with his friend, their heads close together as they looked at something in a book.
He also saw Draco talking quietly to his mother and Harry was shocked to see the Malfoy matriarch there as well. Harry gave Molly’s arm a squeeze and walked over, “hey boys why didn’t you go to the Burrow with everyone?” He sighed softly at the twin looks of ‘what the hell’ from the boys and shook his head. Interhouse relations were still a work in progress, two snakes in a den full of lions never went well even with Rosie being in Ravenclaw and Bill and Fleur’s children being students at Beauxbatons.
“Harry,” Narcissa said softly, pulling the darker males attention up to her. He stood up, bending at the waist a bit to press a kiss to her cheek.
“It’s good to see you Narcissa, how have you been?”
She was still as stunning as she was fifteen years ago, her pale hair was pulled back in an elegant french twist, more white than blonde now and fine lines around her eyes lending her an air of matronly elegance that she held well. “Southern France has been very kind to me. It’s rather lovely this time of year, I would like it if you and Albus visited more often.” She pinned him with a look that successfully had him feeling like a shuffling, reprimanded child again. She glanced over his shoulder seeing a Healer and tracked him until he was out of sight before she drew Harry closer. “Draco says it was Dolohov, is this true?”
Green eyes met pale grey and Draco simply shrugged. “You try keeping something from her.”
“It’ll never happen,” Harry laughed softly shaking his head. “I can’t tell you everything but yes. Have you been in con...tact...with…” His words trailed off at her sharp look and he shivered at the icy ferocity in her gaze. “Sorry ma’am.”
“You know very well that I wouldn’t risk time with Scorpius or my son. I cut all ties to those people and last I had heard Dolohov was in a cell near Lucius.” She reached into the folds of her robes and drew out a single, slender envelope. “This, however, did come for me a few days ago. I never broke the seal.”
Draco looked over Harry’s shoulder and sucked in a sharp breath as seeing the very same symbol hanging in the sky of Diagon Alley pressed into the wax. “Well this is a fucking coincidence.”
“Draco Lucius Malfoy, you watch your language.” Narcissa snapped as their boys snickered behind her. Harry bit back a laugh at seeing the flush on his partners cheeks, also trying not to think on how good it made him look.
“Sorry Mother,” Draco muttered taking the letter from Harry and turning it over in his slender fingers. “No return address, how did this arrive?”
“It was there when your aunt and I had returned home from tea with the lovely witches down the lane from us. Even Lopsy had no idea where it came from.”
“We should have a curse-breaker look at...it….what?” Harry asked as he got a side glance from Draco.
“Really Potter, you’d think you would remember who you partnered with.”
“Except you’re an auror.”
“Who spent most of my training with the curse-breakers. Before they partnered me up with Lee, you remember how everyone refused to partner with me I’m sure.”
“Excuse me? Auror Potter?” A spritely witch bobbed up to them. “I’m Healer Janice Todd, you’re working with the American Aurors yes?”
“Um...yes are they alright?”
“Yes, they’re asking for you and we don’t wish to release Miss Rosewood just yet but she’s demanding to see you and Auror Malfoy.”
“Rosewood?” Narcissa asked softly, tapping a finger to her lips. “That name sounds so familiar,” she mused shaking her head. “Ah I’m sure it will come to me.”
“Mother, can you take the boys? We were going to ask if they could stay with you at the cabin, with us being on a new case…”
“I’ll take them, not to worry my little dragon.” She pressed a kiss to his forehead and clapped for the boys. “Come along you two, Draco, Harry I expect you both for dinner this evening and bring along the lady Aurors who are staying with you. I wish to meet the Americans that have my grandsons so enamoured.” She cast a sharp glance to them and both men swallowed hard.
“Yes mother, six o’clock sound good to you?”
“Perfect,” She nodded as she took both of the boys hands and lead them to the Floo.
Harry and Draco turned to follow the Healer down the hall. Draco slid the letter into the folds of his robes, ready to look it over when they were back at Grimmauld Place. He watched Harry from the corner of his eye, watching how he lost himself to thought and chewed on his plump lower lip. Draco knew that this partnership was something he had always wanted but being so close to the object of his desire for the last twenty some odd years was slowly driving him mad. Astoria was hardly cold in her grave and the blonde was wanting nothing more than to kiss him. He sighed softly, shaking that thought from his head as they rounded the corner only to hear a tirade in a heavily accented voice from down the hall.
“Sylvie you really need to calm down,” Lyra’s gentle voice could be heard through the door.
“Calm down? Non! There’s some kinda gris-gris here and they ain’t lettin ya go?” Harry and Draco exchanged a look at the total change in the werewolf, though Draco’s eye twitched at the french.
“I knew I recognized her accent, she’s bloody cajun!” The blonde hissed.
“Ya got a problem with it blondie?” Sylvie snapped as she opened the door.
“Oh my hell, Sylvie!” Lyra groaned from the bed, her freckled cheeks slightly paler than normal. “I am so sorry Draco, she gets...testy and then her mother’s blood comes out.”
“Do ya know how long it took me ta get dem damn coonassin Healers to let me in ‘ere?” She glared at said Healer who simply glared back. “Least dis here lil’cher went ta get ya.” The witch threw herself into a chair with a huff.
“We were only concerned-”
“Thank you Healer Todd, if we could please have a moment with them? Is Lyra well enough to leave?” Harry flashed her his most charming ‘Golden Boy’ smile that absolutely did not make Draco swoon.
“O-oh,” Healer Todd blushed as she looked at the chart in her hand. “S-she’s cleared to leave whenever. All her tests came back fine, but if you insist about her leaving we can’t stand in the way of official Auror business.”
“Thank you Healer Todd,” He smiled again, leading her out of the door and casting a glare at Draco who snorted into his hand. “Shut it.”
“Not on your life, Golden Boy.” he smirked, eyes locking with Harry’s enchanting emerald.
“Boys?” Lyra called snapping them out of their little staring contest and making them both blush.
“What happened out there Lyra?” Harry asked, pulling up a chair to the bed she sat in.
Sylvie perked up as she pushed herself up into a more upright position, “before she answers...we have people in...3...2...1” She clicked her fingers pointing to the door as it burst open to reveal a slightly panicked looking Neville and Blaise smirking right behind him. “Welcome to the party boys,” Sylvie smirked her accent receding a bit, though the hard hits on her vowels still in her voice.
Lyra blushed harder as she smoothed the blanket over her lap carefully, her dark eyes avoiding looking at Neville, who had dazzled her with his knowledge of plants in Diagon Alley, as Harry and Draco shared a look. “Hi Neville,” she said softly.
“Lyra, are you alright?” He cast a glare at his snickering partner as they shouldered their way into the room.
Harry smirked as he watched his friend, elbowing Draco lightly who only shook his head as he watched his own childhood friend drooling over a seemingly uninterested werewolf. “Good thing you two are here. Did you find anything out?”
“Dolohov was somehow released about six months ago, he made it sound like he was reformed and ready to rejoin society and make amends. He’s kept his nose down and stayed within his parole until this. Kingsley wants us to go and have a look at his house he’s got curse-breakers taking down the wards.” Blaise dropped into a chair, lounging back and running his fingers through the soft curls of his hair.
“It would help if we knew what we were looking for,” Draco sighed leaning against the wall, pressing the heel of his hand into his arm to rub away the phantom pain of his Dark Mark.
“That’s where I come in.” Lyra said as she lifted a hand with a shy smile. “Before he AK’d himself I saw...something.”
“You...wait a second you were inside his head as he died?” Nevill’s eyes went wide as he gaped at her.
“The one thing I’ve told her twenty million times to NOT DO!” Sylvie growled glaring at her handler who simply glared back.
“Oh I’m sorry was I supposed to tap him on the shoulder and ask him where his head was during this whole holy unspeakable killing spree?” Lyra glared back at the werewolf.
“You were in his head minutes before he killed himself! You know what that does to you!”
“He was going to kill himself anyway! That was his mission all along and we needed answers before they were lost! My comfort means nothing when we can get answers or did you forget that these people killed Leigh?” Lyra asked, “she always said to use our skills to the absolute end to find all the answers. It was the only way we could get ahead.”
“Ladies,” Blaise chuckled. “We have a case to work, you can snipe at each other later.”
“Bitch,” Lyra grumbled pushing the blankets off her legs and standing up.
“Brat,” Sylvie shot back though there was a relieved note in her voice as the other woman got up.
“Right, so...as Sylvie pointed out I was in that mans head. I couldn’t find much, I saw...flashes. A pale man with no nose, a snake...a really big snake, a crazed looking man with long teeth and claws.”
“ Vargulf ,” Sylvie hissed spitting onto the floor and making the wizards exchange a look.
“Gypsy thing,” Lyra rushed on. “But I also saw something that might help. I saw canals and a city that sits on stilts.”
“Venice,” Draco muttered softly, the first thing that popped into his mind.
“Well…” Harry sighed raking his fingers through his hair making it fluff and stick up haphazardly. “We need to search Dolohov’s house. See what we can find and hopefully click in some answers.”
“Jail break?” Sylvie asked hopefully, visibly perking up as she got to her feet.
“Jai-she’s free to-”
“Jail break!” Sylvie cackled as she gathered Lyra up, booking it out the door.
“She’s insane.” Draco groaned rubbing at his temples.
“That’s what makes her so fun.” Blaise laughed slapping his friend on the back.
“You’re insane,” Draco sighed as the four wizards followed the witches out of the hospital.
Harry flinched as the door to the small house swung open with an ominous creak, revealing dark shabby rooms with stagnant air. The curse-breakers had done their jobs and now the small team of Aurors were left to gather evidence. Harry sighed as he pulled out his wand, “ lumos. ”
“Not showing off this time Potter?” Blaise smirked as he flicked his own wand, wordlessly summoning the ball of light to the tip of his wand and wiggling his eyebrows at Sylvie who snorted and rolled her eyes.
“Be careful what you touch everyone, the curse-breakers cleared things out but we don’t know what sorts of things Dolohov was keeping here.” Draco instructed, with his own muttered lumos , moving into the main living area. Pale eyes scanned the room, a shiver racing along his spine as he felt the tingle of dark magic. Flashes of Dolohov sitting at his table in the Manor raced through his mind as they began their search. He remembered with unease the way the man would happily torture muggles and non-supporters, forever loyally at the beck and call of the Dark Lord. Draco pressed the heel of his palm into his arm as phantom pains raced through his nerve endings as he remembered Dolohov holding him down as he was given the mark. He felt a pressure on his hand and looked to see Harry’s sun darkened one resting over his own moon kissed skin. Warmth radiated from the darker Auror and grey eyes lifted up to see understanding and compassion staring back at him from that comforting emerald gaze. He shook his head slightly and Harry nodded, giving his wrist a squeeze before moving past him and further into the room.
Harry stood by a desk that was shoved into a corner and held his wand aloft as he began looking over the papers scattered there. Slight movement caught his eye and he spotted photos from the original Death Eaters gathered up. Bellatrix’s maniacal smile and crazy hair and Fenrir snarling up at him from the magical pictures. Harry felt the rage pool in his stomach as he waved his hand over the photo, watching as flames curled around it and felt a wave of satisfaction roll over him as the people in the photo tried to get away from the flames.
“Really?” Blaise snorted as he walked past.
Harry shrugged as he began to sort through papers, listening as the other Aurors rustled around looking for clues. He heard humming and turned to see Sylvie bobbing along to some music in her own head, catching only the last bit of what she was singing.
“ La da...dada da….dadada… OW!” The werewolf yelped as a book clipped her in the side of the head and she whipped around to see Lyra glaring at her. Sylvie smirked back at her bracing her hands on her hips, “good golly!”
“I will end you,” Lyra glared at her friend as the woman only smirked.
“Um...guys? I think I found something.” Neville called from down the hall.
The five Aurors drifted down the hall to see Neville standing in an empty room. Well, not empty, on the long table there were several masks laid out each one of them done in different colors and sets of the deep red robes hanging on mannequins. On the far wall the same symbol the dark wizard had thrown up in the sky was painted, drips of red had slid down the wall leaving trails behind.
“Well…” Harry muttered, “that’s not creepy.”
“Not at all,” Sylvie rolled her eyes as she moved over to the table picking up a mask. “This looks like something you would see down in Naw’Lens during Mardi Gras.”
Blaise moved over to her, looking at the mask from over her shoulder. “It looks like something my mother would collect.”
“Let me guess she also collects the petite dolls, with all the pretty petticoats and delicate curled hair?”
“Yeah, she loves them.” He nodded.
“Creepy,” Sylve shook her head waving her wand and muttering a shrinking spell on all the masks and putting them into a bag.
“Hey guys, look at this.” Lyra held up a letter. “I think we found our way in, there’s a gathering in Venice at the end of the week.”
Harry walked over and took the letter looking it over, his heart falling as he saw the date. “September first…”
“The same day the kids go back to school,” Draco said softly.
“Kingsley will probably want us to go and investigate,” emerald eyes lifted to meet slate grey. “I’ll miss Lily going on the train.”
“We can go mate,” Neville said softly. “I don’t want you missing-”
“They attacked Diagon Alley Nev...where my kids were. They attacked Hermione...twice. Ginny won’t like it...but I need to be there you will all need my help.”
“Hero complex...that’s going to get you killed.” Draco muttered, “no one would fault you if you wanted to be here.”
“Scared that I’ll show you up Malfoy?” Harry smirked as he watched a pale brow arch at him.
“Oh my god kiss already! The tension is killing me!” Sylvie griped from behind them making both men blush hotly and look away from each other.
Lyra groaned as she smacked a hand to her face shaking her head, “I can’t take you anywhere.” She sighed, “well looks like none of us are sleeping tonight, who wants take out while we go over evidence and get sanctions to go to this party?”
“Not thai tonight,” Blaise groaned, “my stomach tried to kill me after that last time.”
Draco’s eyes went wide as he fumbled with his wand. “Bloody hell! What time is it?” He cast a quick tempus charm and groaned as he saw the time. “We have to be at mother’s in 10 minutes! She wants to meet Sylvie and Lyra because of Albus and Scorpius. You two are coming with,” he glanced at Neville and Blaise, the Gryffindor paling a bit at the thought of dinner with the Malfoy matriarch. “The sooner we go, the sooner we can get back to the case and I don’t have to listen to my mother guilt trip me about the new women in my son’s life that she didn’t know about.”
Blaise barked a laugh as he held out his arm to Sylvie, “shall we go m’lady?” He gave her a dashing grin to which the witch only rolled her eyes but took his arm.
“You splinch me I’m going to cut your dick off.”
Blaise paled a bit before popping away, Neville taking Draco’s arm as Harry took Lyra’s and with twin pops they left the house.
The six Aurors landed easily in the receiving room of the ‘modest’ cabin Narcissa kept in England. In reality it was a sprawling country house, Draco sighed softly as the warmth of his home chased away the chill of Dolohov’s house. In the years following the war the elder Malfoy had decided to rid them of the home that was tainted. Where the Manor once stood was simply a grand space of land that held no purpose even now. Draco felt that the very ground was tainted from the darkness that was Voldemort and had not set foot on his ancestral land since. His mother kept two homes, one in England that she enjoyed during the summers when Scorpius was out of school and her main home in Southern France that she shared with her living sister. The door to the receiving room was opened and an elderly house elf stuck her head in, narrowing her eyes at Draco.
“Master Draco is being late! Madame Narcissa expected him to be here at 6 o’clock.”
Draco rolled his eyes, “we are not late Lopsy, we are-” he heard the clock start to chime six and sighed shaking his head. “Late.”
“That is what Lopsy said, now come. The young Masters are waiting with Madame Narcissa.” She motioned for them to follow her, Blaise snickering at the glare his friend tossed him as they entered the formal dining room. Albus and Scorpius were both sitting at the table, talking with Narcissa who watched the boys with a fond smile on her face. As the doors opened she slowly stood up, her pale blue eyes taking in the six adults.
“You are late my dragon.” She arched a brow at her son who flushed and moved to press a kiss to her cheek.
“We were investigating mother, time ran away from us.”
“I suppose I will allow it, this time.” She turned to Harry accepting a kiss on the cheek from him as well as Blaise. “Blaise, how is your mother?”
“She is well,” The darker male smiled. “She’s looking forward to your next garden party.”
“Such a dear, I look forward to seeing her again.” Her eyes traveled to Neville and she gave him a gentle smile. “Good to see you as well Auror Longbottom. I hope your grandmother is well.”
“She is, thank you ma’am. You look lovely as always.” Neville gave her a stiff smile, still uncomfortable around the woman due to her sister torturing his parents.
Pale eyes landed on the two women who stood ramrod straight, their hands folded behind their backs. “And I am right in assuming that these are the American Aurors?”
“Agent Sylvie Rasputin, ma’am. On loan from the MCUSA to assist with a case.”
“Rasputin? As in the ‘Mad Monk’?” A pale brow lifted and Sylvie shrugged, not squirming under the scrutiny.
“His brother actually, my da married a gadje woman and left the clan to be with her. I completed school at Ilvermorny and joined the Auror program after graduating.”
“A gypsy? It’s been a long time since I have been around one. My aunt Walburga-”
“Sylvie’s a Black,” Harry broke in with a small chuckle. “We found out the first day in the house. She looks almost exactly like Iola Black.”
“Ah, yes. Well welcome to my home.”
“Thank you for having me,” Sylvie said softly, looking a bit uncomfortable with the reminder of being part of one of the oldest families in England.
“And you are?” Narcissa’s eyes traveled to Lyra who smiled kindly at the elder Malfoy, slipping into her pureblood manners easily.
“Agent Lyra Rosewood ma’am. I’m Agent Rasputin’s partner.”
“You are...Rosewood? Ah now I know why I know that name. You look so much like your mother.”
Lyra paled, her freckles standing out once more. “You know my mother?” She squeaked, clearing her throat.
“Why yes, my ex husband, Cersei torment his soul, had some dealings over in the United States. Business ventures he called them, he had an interest in the Rosewood Potioneer business. Your family is quite well known for their brews.”
Lyra’s lips pursed tightly as she fisted her hands into her robes. “Yes...mother and father are very proud of their empire, though they refuse to help those who really need the potions. They were...less than thrilled when I entered the Auror program.” Lyra rolled her eyes, “mother thought it was...unlady like. Told me my future husband would not like that line of work.”
Narcissa’s eyes danced as she let out a small laugh. “Considering he is in the same line of work I would hardly think it would matter.” She arched an eyebrow at the several confused looks she got. “Draco has been promised to Lyra since they were in nappies...well more accurately since Lyra was born since her elder sisters were already promised to others.”
“Mother!” Draco yelped, casting a frantic glance at Harry and seeing something akin to hurt in those emerald eyes.
“I beg your pardon?” Lyra gasped, her own dark eyes finding Neville’s who was looking at her in confusion.
Narcissa laughed, covering her lips with her fingers. “I apologize, I always look for a way to nettle my son. I had the contract nulled shortly after the war. With Lucius rotting away in his cell I refused to dictate my sons life and wished him to live as he chose. With whomever he chose.” She cast a meaningful look at Draco who groaned softly and scrubbed a hand over his face, a feeling she had a certain dark skinned auror in mind. “Now then, who is hungry?”
“We are!” Scorpius called from the table, the two boys had silently been watching everything, snickering at the older woman’s antics.
Narcissa smiled as she motioned for everyone to have a seat. Draco settled into the seat at his mother’s right, feeling Harry drop into the chair next to him. He chanced a glance at the darker male, catching the other’s emerald gaze and offering a small smile. Harry smiled back softly and shrugged, nudging the lighter male with his foot under the table. It was a moment of peace, and the six Aurors knew it would probably be one of the last they would be able to have in this investigation.
“So, we can’t apparate there?” Harry asked, had caught an early portkey out of London that landed them in Northern Italy, some small village outside of Pesaro. Lyra had advised the wizards to dress in muggle clothing, so Harry was in a pair of simple work jeans with a dark red T-shirt and trainers. The trip to Italy came two days after the discovery of everything in Dolohov’s house and they were finally cleared for an international investigation needing to report to the Ministry in Rome the next day before continuing on to Venice to start the actual investigation.
“Nope,” Lyra hummed as she lead the group along the hard packed dirt road. She wore a pale yellow tunic shirt over bright floral leggings and strappy viking sandals, her hair done in twin braids and partially hidden by a large sunhat.
“And we can’t fly?” Draco questioned, lifting his aviator sunglasses to look at the witch. He wore a pale grey button down, the sleeves rolled down even with the heat and a pair of dark wash jeans tucked into a pair of dragon hide boots.
“Or use a portkey?” Blaise asked as they approached a stable at the edge of the village. He was dressed more ‘punkish’ with a pair of black jeans, a deep V-neck black shirt and a green and black checkered overshirt with matching converse. His own sunglasses were perched low on his nose as he watched Sylvie walk ahead of him.
“Correct.” Lyra cast a glance to Sylvie who snickered behind her hand at the looks the wizards were exchanging. The werewolf was dressed in a long flowing black skirt, black flats, and a Fleetwood Mac T-shirt that was artfully ripped with a flowing, flower printed shawl. Her hair was left free, the sun bouncing off the multiple colors in her locks.
“And there’s no Floor or even Muggle transportation options?” Neville inquired, he was dressed similarly to Harry, though his jeans seemed to have permanent dirt stains on the knees and his shirt was a deep blue.
“How the bloody hell do we get there then?”
“Hope you boys know how to ride!” Lyra laughed as she pulled open the doors to the stables and smiling brightly at the elderly man. “ Salve signore!” (Hello sir!)
Harry arched an eyebrow as he leaned over to Draco. He stopped for a moment to take in how the sun glinted off his pale hair, it was nearly painful how beautiful the man was and Harry wanted nothing more than to reach out to tuck a stray strand of hair behind his ear. He shook his head of those thoughts and smirked, “any idea what they’re saying?”
“I speak French Potter, not Italian.” As he watched the sprightly young witch speak to the gentleman.
“What kind of place requires horses to get to? We’re bloody wizards not polo players.” Blaise huffed.
“Today you are,” Sylvie smirked as she walked over to where Lyra was shaking the man’s hand and taking some of the reigns from Lyra, leading three of the horses over to them. She tapped her finger to her lips as she looked at both Draco and Harry and then back to the horses. She placed the reigns of a pure black stallion in Draco’s hands, “you’ll do well with Sebastian.” She winked at him and placed the reigns of the slender looking dark brown horse. “Asher will work best for you I think.” She winked at them both, clicking her tongue and pulling her own horse after her and out of the stable.
Harry arched an eyebrow to see Lyra sitting atop a multi-colored horse, stroking along its neck and smiling. Blaise sat on a pure white horse, looking comfortable himself while Neville looked highly uncomfortable on his stocky pale grey one. “Alright boys?” Lyra called, smiling happily at them as she adjusted her sunhat. “You do know how to ride, yes?” Her chocolate colored eyes danced with mirth.
Draco scoffed as he swung himself up onto his own horse, Harry trying very hard not to watch the bunch and shift of his thighs as he settled himself into the saddle. “Of course, Mother used to take me riding when father was being insufferable.”
“I’ve only ridden a broom,” Harry muttered swinging himself up and grunting slightly as he positioned himself.
“And a Theresal,” Neville pointed out, shifting and gripping the reigns tightly as he swung a little too far to the side.
“And a Dragon,” the Slytherins chimed in, smirking at Harry as he flushed.
“That so?” Sylvie snickered, “then you should be fine, Oh Golden Saviour of us All.”
“The Villa is just up the path there.” Lyra smiled clicking her tongue and nudging her horse forward. “Walking would take us an hour and a half, this is the quickest way.” The ride was leisurely, conversation flowing between the six Aurors easily, eventually ending up with Blaise and Draco lagging back while the Gryffindors spoke with the Americans. Lyra spoke endlessly about the villa they were staying in as well as the surrounding area. “The greenhouse is totally the best part-”
“Bias!” Sylvie cackled from up ahead, Harry’s loud laugh drifted back to where Draco brought up the rear and warmed the Slytherin from the inside.
Draco snorted softly as the Americans settled into light bickering, turning his head as he heard Blaise’s dreamy sigh from next to him. “Oh bloody hell.”
“You’re bloody mooning you ponce!” Draco groaned, looking up to the sky as if it were going to give him the answers he wanted.
“I am not!” Blaise hissed.
“You are! Why do you always pick the difficult ones?”
“She’s not difficult!”
“My friend, she hardly looks twice at you. And it’s only been four days since we’ve even met them!”
“She’s the one Draco,” Blaise sighed watching as Sylvie swiveled in her saddle and waved her arms as she spoke rapidly to Harry. “We’ve spoken a lot, her home life wasn’t exactly roses and rainbows. Some of the things she told me about what it was like growing up a half breed ...seems like the shit we put some of the muggleborns through.”
Draco nodded, watching the gypsy with curiosity. “You did say that same thing about the one witch from Muggle Relations...what was her name? Janet?”
“Janet has nothing on Sylvie. Did you see how she took out those Dark Wizards?”
“I was a bit preoccupied, my friend.” Draco arched a brow at his friend as he shook his head. “And what does Aretta think?”
“The same thing Narcissa thinks about how you pine after Potter.” Blaise shot back.
“I do not!”
“Mate, you’ve been my best friend aside from Pansy since we were in nappies. You’ve also been in love with him since we were fourteen.”
Draco snorted, rolling his eyes. “Anyway, I suppose Sylvie has her charm.”
“We’re here!” Lyra exclaimed loudly, jumping down from her horse and spreading her arms wide as she grinned. “Welcome to Ville du Hestia!”
“Your villa is named after a Greek goddess?” Neville asked as he swung his leg over to get off his horse, stumbling a bit into Harry, who kept him from falling.
“Granny was a Greek Native. She left the house to my brother and he often does his research from here.” She smiled as she pushed open the doors leading them out of the heated, Italian sun.
Sylvie’s groan seemed to echo in the vestibule of the Villa as she bent over to sort through the luggage that was waiting for them. “Please tell me he won’t be here.”
“Oh hush you love me,” a deep and smooth voice chimed in making the six jump, and the four men spinning around to see a man standing at the top of the stairs in a flashy deep purple floral kimono style robe, an opera length cigarette holder held in his fingers and smoking steadily, and his wavy black hair held back by a bright pink headband. He held the same honey brown eyes as Lyra though his skin was more sunkissed than hers.
“Cor! What are you doing here?” Lyra asked, “you said you were in Japan.”
The man rolled his eyes as he slowly descended the stairs, Draco having to bite back a laugh at the dramatic flourish of his robes. “We found something but brought it back here to study. And the minute that dear mommy and daddy discovered you were coming here with the mongrel and four men of questionable morals they demanded I be here.” He smirked as he ruffled Syvlie’s hair making the witch sputter and glare.
“I’ll show you mongrel.”
“Of course you will,” he winked at her turning to hold out his hand to Neville. “You are?”
“Neville Longbottom.” He said softly taking his hand and giving it a firm shake.
“Gardeners hands,” the man commented before turning to Blaise and the other men.
“Lovely to meet you all. You can call me Corvus.” His eyes lingered on Harry and he smirked. “But you can call me Daddy.”
“Cor!” Lyra screeched, her face flaming red as Sylvie groaned, slapping a hand to her eyes.
Emerald eyes went wide as Harry shot a panicked look to his partner, the blonde glaring daggers at Corvus, who was either outright ignoring it, or oblivious; though Harry would bet at the former. “Erm…”
“You have...stunning eyes.” Corvus smirked as he slid Harry’s hand into the crook of his arm and gave his hand a pat. “Let me show you around, my home is your home while you are in the Villa.”
Harry turned a panicked look to Lyra who simply shrugged offering him an apologetic smile. His eyes drifted again to Draco, whose lips were pulled into a tight frown and he mouthed help me at the man.
Corvus lead the six Aurors through the villa, guiding them upstairs and pushing open the doors leading out to the balcony. “Up here is where your rooms are, my own rooms are on the ground floor of the west wing. It’s close to where I keep the few animals that I bring here for rehabilitation and study.” The balcony wrapped around the upper level, with several sets of french doors leading into bedrooms and creating a rectangle that was standing over a pool. At the opposite end of where they stood was a grand greenhouse, the crawling vines curling around the elegant stained glass.
“I thought your grandmother was Greek.” Draco said as he leaned over the railing to examine the structure of the building. “The architecture of the Villa is clearly French.”
“Granny loved France, well the art, not so much the people. Said they were pompous and could stand to get the baguette out of their ass.” Corvus grinned, making Lyra groan. “There’s six rooms up here, Sylvie’s normal room is on the left side of the balcony as are Neville and Dracos. Blaise and Harry will be on the right along with Lyra’s. You can settle in after lunch, the maids will have put your luggage away. Come, come many more things to see and perhaps do.” he lead them back down the stairs and through a set of double doors, the coiling sweet scent of his clove cigarette curling around them. Beyond the doors three young women bobbed to him and he smiled kindly at them. “Girls.”
“Master Corvus, the kitchen staff has started on lunch and it will be served shortly.” The brunette of the group smiled up at him, her accent slightly American with a bit of a twang.
“Thank you Cici.”
“Zey ‘ave also selected ze wine for your dinner tonight,” the blonde hummed with a coy smile. “Zey are making Coq au Vin .”
“That sounds lovely Madeline.”
“Und the luggage has been moved, Herr Corvus.” The stocky redhead nodded sharply as she eyed the four men behind him.
“Perfect Brunnie! Ah you ladies are my angels,” He kissed each of their cheeks and waved them off with a grin.
“Pleasure to see you again Miss Lyra.” The women chimed in their varying accents before drifting off through the doors.
Lyra waved to them cheerfully before turning to the confused men. “Cici, Madeline, and Brunnie are village girls.”
“What?” Sylvie smirked as she sauntered past them to lean on Lyra, “did you think they’d really have a giant magical villa just up the hill from a no-maj village?”
“They all had different accents,” Harry pointed out.
“The village is filled with squibs. Granny believed that even they deserved to have a place in the community.” Corvus led them down the short hall and motioning to the wizarding portraits that lined the wall and waved at them as they walked. “They keep the no-maj that decide to tour the winery busy and away from the house, and as such we employ a few here at the villa to keep commerce flowing. The winery is run with a mix of magical and no-maj tech with runes that a squib can use to feel the magic that is part of their heritage.”
“Gran would have loved it here,” Neville sighed softly, still aching with her loss.
Lyra smiled gently as she reached out her hand and gave his a soft squeeze. “I’m sure she would have Neville.”
Corvus cleared his throat pointedly, eyeing their intertwined fingers before he shot a glare at Sylvie who shrugged. “Continuing on!” He said loudly spinning with a flourish of smoke and robe and pushing open the double doors before them. “This is the ballroom, leads out to the lower patio and pool. Through here you’ll find the formal dining room, we won’t be using that.” He lead them through more doors and down another stretch of hallway. “On your left leads down to the cove, sometimes sea critters come up to explore and you can even see and hear the Sirens as they sing. It soothes a lot of the creatures I keep here. On your right is the training course, I had it built when Lyra and Sylvie set their wee little hearts on Auror training.”
Sylvie made a noise of disgust as she punched his arm. “Could you be anymore condescending?”
“You wanted, Daddy provided.” He scoffed shooting her a wounded look.
Lyra gagged as Sylvie gave a full body shudder, “never say that again Cor.”
Corvus gave a delicate sniff, turning his nose up a bit. “My girls are so mean to me,” he turned his head to Harry giving him pleading eyes. “I build them a full training course to give them the best chance and this is how I am repaid.”
“He’s more dramatic than you,” Blaise muttered into Draco’s ear, grunting as the blonde elbowed him in the ribs. “Less violent though.”
“Right here we have the stairs to the potion labs,” Corvus said loudly drawing everyone’s attention once more as they walked past a door. “And here we have the entrance into the west wing.” He gave a gleeful grin as he pulled out a wand and gave the wall a tap. The wall shimmered and he walked everyone through, the wizards gaping at the warm and inviting entryway. It was more homey than Harry had expected, reminding him a lot of the Burrow and he felt something warm inside of him to the strange man who still had a grip on his arm.
“Personally this is my favorite part of the villa,” Corvus laughed with a conspiritol wink.
A low series of squeaks caused Harry and co to look around, confusion written on their faces as Lyra let out high pitched squeal and darted forward and scooping something from the ground. “Daisy!” She cried hugging a squeaking little, black as night niffler that chittered at her and nuzzled into her neck, chewing affectionately on the chain of her necklace.
“You have a niffler?” Neville asked, his voice colored with awe as his face softened looking at the woman.
“I rescued Daisy on a case back in Los Angeles. She was being forced bred and also used to steal from movie sets and celebrity homes.” She explained. “She stays here with Corvus because I can’t keep her in New York safely and the MCUSA has strict laws on magical animal ownership.”
“She also helps me rehabilitate any other Nifflers that I rescue.” Corvus explained.
“That you Cor?” A voice drifted out from a door down the hall and Harry’s brow furrowed.
“Who...Charlie?” He gaped as he watched the second eldest of the Weasley children stroll out from a room, a large grey and white freckled Kneazle cradled in his arms with the creature’s tail wrapping securely around his biceps as it purred loudly.
“Hey Harry! Wait...Harry? What are you doing here?” Charlie’s brow drew down as he stroked the large cat under the chin.
“Loki! There you are baby!” Sylvie called out, smiling lovingly at the creature.
Charlie laughed as the Kneazle meowed loudly and jumped from his arms to stroll and twine around the gypsy's legs before moving to inspect the other men. The burly redhead walked over drawing Harry into a rib-crushing hug and pounding him on the back. “It’s good to see you little brother.” he grinned ruffling the Auror’s hair.
“You know this lot?” Corvus asked, eyeing the interaction with barely concealed interest as Lyra and Sylvie both groaned softly shaking their heads.
“Harry was married to my little sister, I told you about her.”
“Small world,” Sylvie smirked as she bent down to scoop Loki up into her arms and he nuzzled into her jaw purring loud enough to wake the dead.
“So it would seem, saves me some introduction.” Corvus pouted.
“You didn’t answer me Harry, why are you in Italy?”
“We’re working on a case,” Harry explained.
“Well, let’s all have this discussion over some food. I don’t know about you but I am starving.” Corvus said with a dramatic sigh earning three sets of eyerolls.
“You’re always hungry Cor,” Charlie said with a fond smile.
“Thirsty too.” Sylvie cackled ducking the swat the older man aimed at her as she danced away with her Kneazle in her arms.
“Youth these days! No respect!” Corvus yelled dramatically, draping himself over Charlie.
Harry bit back a small laugh as he looked back to see his partner and the other auror teams not doing much better at containing their laughter. He felt his breath catch in his chest as he saw Draco’s eyes glittering with unspilled mirth and he was nearly knocked back with how beautiful the man was when he laughed. Harry blushed hotly as he saw the blonde catch him staring and he turned back to Charlie who was laughing and giving Corvus consoling praise. The reason for them being in italy was not an ideal one but Harry found himself glad for this opportunity to get out of Britain with some of the people closest to him. Though he knew something lurked on the horizon and only hoped that they could figure out what was happening before the shit really hit the fan.
Lunch was a somewhat quiet affair, as quiet as something could be with Charlie telling tales of the latest quest to bring a dragon back to the sanctuary in Romania. The four wizards settled into the easy conversations and the relaxed aura of Corvus’s personal dining room eased the travel weary Aurors. Bowls of Carbonara were passed around with freshly baked bread sticks, caprese and bruschetta to help keep the lunch light along with tall chilled glasses of strawberry lemonade. “I forgot how good Marcus’s cooking is!” Lyra groaned happily as she pushed her plate to the side, only to have Sylvie snag it, to finish off the meal.
“Merlin,” Harry gaped, watching the werewolf. “I never thought I’d see someone put more food away than Ron.” He laughed shaking his head and grunting as he felt Draco’s elbow in his ribs. “Ow you prat!” He hissed knocking his knee against the blonde.
“Could you be anymore uncouth?” Draco hissed dramatically, no malice to his voice as he rolled his eyes.
Charlie barked out a laugh as Sylvie tossed a smirk over to them as she slurped up a noodle and dabbed her mouth. “When you shift like I do we, will see how well you handle hunger.”
Corvus eyed the werewolf over his glass, “how often have you been shifting outside of the moon?”
Sylvie ran her fingers through her hair with a frown pulling at her lips and Lyra mirroring the look. “Three or four times a month...depending on the case...as much as twelve. Lyra threw a fit when Quahog wanted to try for more. He ran us all ragged last year during the ‘wolf moon’ and I don’t think Lucy quite recovered.”
Harry felt a pang in his chest at the haunted look on the young woman’s face, knowing that feeling all to well. “How many of you are there?” He asked quietly.
She sighed tapping her nails to the table, Lyra reaching over to grip her hand and settle the movement. “There’s six units in the Lycan Initiative Program or L.I.P. I was bitten as a kid, like I told you. Happened in Germany...By someone you knew.” she arched an eyebrow, a bitter smile curling her lips. “Thank you for killing him by the way, that was a vargulf if ever I’ve seen one.”
Draco tried, and failed, to suppress the shiver that raced up his spine. A quick glance at the thunderous look on Harry’s face confirmed what he had figured out. Sylvie had been attacked by Fenrir Greyback as a child. “I can’t say that you were blessed to survive, but I saw what that monster was capable of.”
“Understatement, but I don’t regret the bite. It hurt like a son of a bitch but I wouldn’t trade my curse for anything, it makes me stronger and able to do things that I couldn’t do without it, help people.”
“Because of Sylvie, we were able to start L.I.P, and Leigh was able to give us the backing we needed. She was our mentor when we started and vouched for Syvlie’s ability to control the wolf as well. The five werewolves...Lucy, John, Emma, Richard, and Luke all were able to keep their jobs.” Lyra said quietly, “werewolves are hardly treated any better in the states than they are here. Without L.I.P they would have been tossed out, stigmatized, treated like shit.”
Sylvie laughed bitterly, “because I taught them what I could do, I was...branded by my da’s clan. I can never go back. I gave away valuable Romani secrets and they say I violated treaties. But I would do it again and again if it meant giving someone a chance to live their life.” She shook her head and bit into some bruschetta, chewing thoughtfully. “But that is neither here nor there, as I said there are six units, twelve people total. Six werewolves and six humans. Lyra and I head the program and are funded by this asshole here,” she pointed her thumb at Corvus who simply shrugged. “The five who are with me were infected in the Canadian Wilderness in an attack five years ago. President Quahog didn’t ‘want to let talent go to waste’.” She snorted, “fucking asshole he is, dressed up this sick little experiment as an ‘honor; and was able to swing into a reelection on it’s coattails.”
“Could you show us?” Neville asked, making all sets of eyes turn to him. “The L.I.P sounds interesting, but you can shift outside of the moon, that’s not something most werewolves who haven’t given themselves over to the curse can do. Greyback was horrifying because he was in a perpetual state of lycanthropy. You also didn’t resemble the strange broken humanoid/wolf hybrid that we normally see when studying lycanthropy in Hogwarts you looked like a...well overgrown wolf.”
Sylvie barked a laugh as she grinned at him, “good eye. I don’t view this as a...curse. It’s not a darkness inside of me it’s simply...part of me now. If i fight it I grow weaker so I follow the rules that have been set out as part of Romani culture to not go mad. It appeases the wolf inside and lets me keep my humanity.” She shrugged, “it’s all philosophical and if I make it to a ripe old age I’ll be able to reflect on it in a rocking chair by a fireplace with a gaggle of little grandchildren at my feet when I am a proper vaida telling all the little ones my svatura .”
“You need to find someone who doesn't run the minute you wolf out and have children before you get grandchildren.” Lyra pointed out, casting a pointed glance at Blaise who snapped to attention and reached for his glass. The robust witch’s eyes went comically wide as her face flamed. “Oh sweet hell, Blaise! I did not need to see that!”
The five wizards looked at her confused as Corvus and Sylvie practically fell out of their chairs cackling. Draco glanced to his childhood friend to see him covering his face and bracing his elbows on the table. “Pardon?”
“s-she...Her mental walls are down!” Sylvie gasped as one of her hands, shakily, slid onto the table to haul herself up. “When we’re at the villa she tends to just...let things go. We rarely talk verbally when we are here, prefering to just walk the grounds or train and just use legilimency to communicate.”
“Back home I have to keep my mental walls up...all the time. Especially around Hydra and Lacerta, they use their own legilimency to really fuck with my head when I go home.”
“They are just petty and jealous of your natural talent Ly,” Corvus nodded. “Of course they are the apples of daddy dearests eye even with their career choices.”
“You have more sisters?” Charlie asked eyeing the man.
“Only two more, the twins. Royal bitches the both of them, pun absolutely intended.” The older man sniffed delicately, “Ly and I both went into professions that actually make a goddamn difference. Daddy dearest thinks we are scum because we would rather use our knowledge to help people instead of lord superiority over them. Hydra and Lacerta are the complete opposite, they work for some frufru company doing haute couture makeup or some shit, I don’t pay attention anymore if I can help it.” Corvus smirked at Blaise and Draco, “purebloods right? Gotta love those family dynamics.”
Draco snorted as Blaise shrugged, “we wouldn’t know.”
“So, you lot wanna see what the second top team of the L.I.P can do?” Sylvie asked, changing the subject and grinning at the British wizards.
“Second?” Harry asked.
“Emma and Danny have the highest close rate in cases. I blame it on their ‘twinner-vision’.”
“They aren’t even siblings!” Lyra groaned, “they were just born on the same day.”
“Semantics,” Sylvie laughed, pushing herself from the table. “Meet us on the training course in say 20 minutes?” She stalked out of the room with a swirly flourish of her shawl and Lyra laughed as she ran after her.
“She’s nearly as dramatic as you are when you walk out of a room,” Harry laughed ducking the swat from Draco and catching the curious look from Charlie. The brunette swallowed hard, it was one thing to be friends with the one who had let Greyback into Hogwarts and had caused a lot of pain to his adopted family, but it was another to have a crush (and act) on said Slytherin. Better it Charlie than Ron , he thought bitterly to himself.
Corvus grinned as he pushed himself up, “shall we go gentlemen?” he laughed slipping his arm into Charlie’s and leading the way to the training course.
Harry settled onto a bench, folding his arms on the banister before him, and looked down into the ring. The training area was built like a Quidditch pitch almost with an artificial sky like the one in the Great Hall at Hogwarts. Draco settled to one side as Neville took the other, “this setup looks better than the one that is at the Ministry.” He said, glancing over to the blonde.
“What do they fight against when they train?”
“Normally some mech suits that were created by Richard and Gillian, they’re the techy squad of the L.I.P and paved the way for combative training at the MCUSA.” Corvus smiled as he rested his chin on his interlaced fingers. “We find it so strange that Europe hasn’t embraced some of the technological advances that no-maj have, it’s archaic the things that are done over here.”
“Tell me about it,” Blaise sighed. “I just got this one to go see a muggle film a few years ago. That was a trip.”
Draco glared at him, “oh I’m sorry my father was one of the biggest pureblood extremist douchebags on the planet. I didn’t have time to go sneaking off into the Muggle world like some assholes.”
Harry arched a brow as he leaned back to look at Blaise. “What did you take him to go see?”
Blaise’s smirk looked absolutely diabolical. “Emojis.”
Corvus choked on his drink, slapping a hand to his chest as Charlie thumped him on the back. “That...you took him to go see that vile movie on his first time out in the no-maj world?” He shook his head, “you are a vile despicable human being...and we must now become diabolical friends.”
A door on the lower level opened and the six men watched as Sylvie and Lyra walked out. Lyra was dressed in a pair of simple dark grey cut off leggings and a loose pukwudgie quidditch T-shirt with her hair braided tightly against her head. Sylvie was in a black robe, the tie cinched at her waist and falling off of one shoulder. They watched as the werewolf slid off the robe, Neville, Harry, and Charlie blushing as they saw her nude form under the silk as Draco rolled his eyes at Blaise and Corvus was critically looking her over.
“She’s got more scars since the last time I saw her.” He muttered, a frown pulling at his lips as he leaned forward between Harry and Draco to get a better look. “The only thing my work can’t fix is the scars.”
Harry frowned as well, remembering the scars that littered poor Remus’s body. Sylvie was fit, her muscles well defined but now he understood why she wore only long pants or skirts. Claw marks crawled up her shapely legs and a ragged bitemark covered a good portion of her hip and was starkly visible even from their vantage point. She slowly rolled her shoulders and shook out her hands turning her back to them and giving them a glimpse of the stylized raven tattoo on her lower back. Harry heard Blaise’s low whistle and chuckled, the Slytherin was really far gone for the woman it seemed.
“You ready Cor?” Sylvie called over her shoulder.
“Once you shift I’ll hit the button and the drones will come out. They’re set to give quite a sting so give us a good show duckies yes?”
Lyra and Sylvie groaned at the nickname and Lyra moved back from her friend. “Alright Syl, start the change.”
The men watched with bated breath as Sylvie took a few deep breaths. Time seemed to stand still and the first snap of bones made everyone but Lyra and Corvus jump. They watched as her back bowed and her skin seemed to ripple as bones shifted. A particularly violent snap had the woman spinning and dropping to her knees. She howled in pain as she clawed at her face, a chunk of skin tearing away and revealing darkened fur and a single golden wolf’s eye. Harry’s stomach churned as he watched her skin tear and rip away and he felt something on his hand. Glancing down he saw Draco’s pale fingers curled around his and the blonde looking a little green around the gills. It was a lot different than watching Remus change back when he was only a 3rd year and Harry was nausiated by the gore that was Sylvie’s wolf breaking through the human shell. Minutes later they watched in awe as a gorgeous dark red wolf stood where the woman once did, shaking bits of skin and blood from it’s fur before bending its head and chowing down on the pile of flesh.
“That...that really should not turn me on.” Blaise muttered, startling a laugh out of Draco and Harry.
“Not your everyday werewolf change is it boys?” Corvus grinned.
“I’ve only seen a werewolf change once before,” Harry muttered. “It was nothing like that.”
“Just wait, it gets better.” Sylvie gave herself a shake and stretched, shaking out each paw and spinning around in a circle. Lyra approached cautiously holding a syringe. “Syrum one brings Sylvie’s human mind forward,” Corvus said conversationally. “Thankfully the second syrum isn’t needed right now. It’s an agent that nullifies the toxin in bite on the full moon.”
“You can stop the curse?” Harry asked.
“Well...nullify isn’t the right word. It makes it like a non-moon wolf bite. They may want steak a little more rare but the chances to shift are brought down by 46%.”
Draco nodded slowly, “impressive number, where do you get the ingredients to do that?”
“If i told you,” Corvus said with a slow wink. “I would have to kill you.” He held up his wand and whistled to get the attention of the girls. “Alright ladies, first to down the most drones wins. Show these Brits why we won America!”
Lyra’s groan echoed in the room as Sylvie let out a pitiful howl covering her snout with one of her paws. A gong sounded at the flick of his wand and several doors slid open around the lower part of the room drawing the attention of the British wizards. They gaped as they saw nine large mechanical things march out.
Corvus let out a delighted laugh as Lyra let out a long suffering groan. “The tech team jazzed them up!” He called, “You and the wolves kept breaking the wooden training dummies. John and Keith got tired of filling out rec orders for training repairs. John also has a massive hard on for the Terminator movies and viola we got these bad boys.”
Sylvie’s howl echoed in everyone’s chest and their eyes snapped forward to see as she crashed into a drone. Large jaws opened wide, tearing out casing and wiring as sparks of electricity raced through her fur. Blaise watched with a slack jawed sort of awe and Draco rolled his eyes at his friend, reaching over to click his jaw shut.
“Bloody hell!” Neville yelped drawing attention to where he was watching.
Lyra had slid between two drones, kicking up dirt and dust, with surprising grace and ease as they took eachother out in a fit of sparks and screeching metal. She raced up a wall and launched herself off, in a flurry of movement a screaming fox was racing through the air and colliding with all four paws into the faceplate of a drone. She darted away to round back for another attack when Sylvie let out a snarl and pounced onto the same drone, her claws raking through steel. Her powerful jaws clamped around wires and came up as she rode the drone down into the ground.
“Hey! That was my target!” Lyra yelled as she shifted back, flipping away as another drone tried to take a swing at her.
Draco leaned into Harry, lips nearly brushing his ear as he kept his voice low. “They’re incredible.”
Harry chuckled, trying to suppress the shiver racing down his spine. “They’re pretty good yeah, but I’ve seen you take down a chimera alone.”
Draco blushed hotly, “says the man who took down the Dark Lord.”
“With your help,” Harry pointed out. Emerald eyes locked with stormy grey and Harry had to battle back the urge to draw the blonde closer. It was starting to become a theme in his mind and one that was getting harder and harder to deny each time it reared its head. A sharp yelp made both Aurors snap to attention to see Sylvie being hauled up and crushed by a drone, her tail thrashing wildly.
Lyra skidded to a halt and lifted her wand, “ Confrigo !”
The drone blitzed out in a series of brilliant sparks dropping the werewolf. A gong sounded and Corvus flicked his wand. “Score’s in duckies! Lyra got five and Sylvie took down four. Total time for 9v2 was twenty-six minutes and forty-two seconds. Getting slow ladies.”
A new series of cracking and pained whimpers had Harry swallowing back bile as a very naked Sylvie shook off blood, gore, and fur before accepting the robe from Lyra and a potion in a pale grey flask. “Fuck you, you-” her tirade was cut off as she hacked, spitting out a lugnut and downing the potion. “Daft Grandmaster look-alike!” she finished as Lyra rolled her eyes and slapped a hand to her forehead.
“This is why you can’t come with me to family functions.”
“Did she just…” Draco gaped at the woman as she dissolved into bickering with her friend.
“Yeah,” Harry couldn’t help but laugh.
“Barmy fuckin bints.” The blonde muttered shaking his head.
“I need a shower!” Sylvie announced loudly clapping a hand on Lyra’s ass. “Good game! Also, food!” She marched off with Lyra sputtering behind her.
IMPORTANT! CONTAINS TRIGGER WARNING, PLEASE READ: Hello all! We hope everyone is enjoying what we are writing so far! We really love putting little pieces of ourselves into our work, and Sylvie and Lyra have become very close to our hearts. Their silliness and entertaining nature have been fun but this chapter starts to delve into the more serious nature of the story and there is a scene in which Draco describes how he got rid of his Dark Mark through what may be considered self harm. If such things can trigger or upset you, we have clearly shown the small area in italics and we urge you to skip over it. We hope you continue to Rate and Review and we can't wait to keep putting out more of this story!
-Doll aka Lyra
The day slipped away into night, dinner being a lively affair and soon everyone found themselves in the pool area of the main house. Fairy lights danced along the surface as Harry and Blaise swam laps, the two working out their house rivalry in that way. Corvus sat on the steps below Charlie, his head resting back against the redhead’s stomach as he chatted with Neville and Lyra floated lazily around them. Soft music played from the balcony above them from Sylvie who opted to sit above and play her guitar. Words drifted up to the werewolf and she glanced down to see Lyra’s fingers dancing along the impressive sword tattooed on Neville’s back. Forest colored eyes drifted to the other bodies in the pool, catching glimpses of shifting ink from the wizards and the still tattoos on her own family.
“That’s a very melancholy tune for a day that was fairly well received,” Draco mused, startling a sour note from the guitar as her fingers slipped on the fret. “Didn’t feel like swimming?”
Sylvie shook her head and tapped the instrument with her wand to make it play on it’s own as it hovered at her side. “I changed twice...four times if you count from wolf to human in the last five days. My very bones hurt, and I swear i can feel my hair grow right now. It’s fucking excruciating. How about you?” She asked eyeing him as he stood in a dark green silk robe that was cinched tight around his waist and covering him from neck to knee.
He shook his head watching as Blaise dunked Harry under, the Gryffindor rearing up with a vengeance and taking the Slytherin down. “I’m not one for swimming,” he said softly as he lifted a hand to rake through his lose hair. His sleeve slipped down and one of Sylvie’s hands shot out with startling speed to grip his wrist. The gypsy felt Lyra brush against her mind and she glanced down waving her away as her long fingers locked like iron bands around his wrist and pulled him closer. Draco stood still as a statue as she shoved his sleeve up; they said nothing as her fingers brushed around the edges of where the Dark Mark once stood. Peaks of faded grey could be seen between ridges and bumps of the gnarled scar tissue and he shivered as her fingers brushed his biggest regret. Her fingers stilled over his flesh as her mossy-colored eyes lifted to his.
“I can feel the pain in the scarwork. You did this to yourself.”
Draco gave her a bitter smile, “I was young, hardly an excuse now, I know that. I took the Dark Mark to save my mother some pain. I did things during the war, never killed anyone, but I did torture and I very nearly killed Weasley our sixth year. That year...I was tasked to kill Dumbledore, our headmaster. Harry tried to help me then too...stalked me all through the castle, knew I was up to something, granted he nearly killed me back then.” Draco laughed softly, the past curse long forgiven as he pulled at the collar of his shirt showing the pearly scar to the werewolf who leaned forward to trace the lines. “My godfather saved me twice that year, when Harry nearly killed me and the second time when he killed Dumbledore himself. Which happened in front of Harry, I didn't know that part until later, not until we were back at school for that magical ‘eighth’ year.” Draco sighed as he watched Charlie slip out from behind Corvus and charged at his fellow lion, dragging the man under the surface.
Blaise lounged on the steps chatting easily with Corvus and Neville, waving his hand wildly as Lyra pretty much submerged herself in the water, only her eyes visible. Something tugged at the blondes heart as he watched his oldest friend easily insert himself into a situation and flourish. “I should have listened to Blaise that summer...the summer of my sixth year. He said he could get myself and mother out, but I was to much of a coward to go. Then I was branded.” he waved a hand at his arm and sighed shaking his head, “It was his idea you know. To go back to Hogwarts. Blaise convinced myself as well as Pansy and Gregory; we were the only Slytherins to come back and it caused a lot of hell even if Pansy and Blaise were virtually innocent, but because of where they were sorted they were ostracized. Blaise felt that we needed to be better, so I started off by apologizing publically to the school as well as privately to certain people, namely Harry and Hermione. I did that alot.” He laughed softly shaking his head.
Sylvie snorted as she shifted around, letting her legs dangle from the railing as she slid closer to him. She slid her arm through his, her palm covering the gnarled scarwork as she rested her head on his shoulder. “You’re a Greek tragedy.”
Draco laughed shaking his head but finding himself comforted by the werewolf, resting his cheek on top of her head. “Possibly, however I have never had any desire to sleep with my mother.”
“Pitty, your moms a babe.”
“I will push you off this balcony.” He threatened halfheartedly nudging her head with his shoulder.
“You can try,” she smiled, her palm warming over the raised scars on his arms. “How did this happen?”
Draco’s eyes got a far away look in them and he sighed softly, “I suffer from anxiety attacks, mostly when I’m alone. PTSD the muggles call it. No mind healer would see me because of my name and others didn't get it...but Harry...Harry did.”
~~~October 31st 1998~~~
Draco sits with his back against one of the parapets of the Astronomy tower, his head resting on his folded arms as his thumb tracks the faded Dark Mark. All that’s left is the faded grey marks, no flash of pain or the sirens call of dark magic but it’s still a stain on Draco’s very soul. He was the only one out of the four of them that had the mark and he wouldn’t wish it on his friends. He lifted his head, letting it fall back as he looked up at the dark sky, stars twinkling down at him and reminding him so much of a kind set of eyes.
“I can protect you and your family, Draco.” the words still raced around in his mind. A year later and they were still so clear. “I know what he sent you to do, I can help you.”
“Shut up,” Draco gasped, his fingers sliding into his hair and pulling at the blonde strands roughly. “Stop...please…” He begged the very air. The shock of grey in his vision had him ripping his hands away and he glared at his arm. Panic rose in his chest as he rubbed his thumb hard against the mark, as if to smudge it away. He fumbled for his wand, his fingers trembling as he held it mear inches from his forearm. Pain lanced through his arm as scarlet slashes cut through the grey lines. Draco felt light headed as he let his arm fall to his side, numbness tickling at the edges of his perception.
“Malfoy!” Harry yelled as he raced up the stairs, his trainers hitting the steps hard. He skidded to a stop gaping at Draco’s arm and reaching forward. “What the hell are you doing!”
“Come to...save me again...Golden Boy?” Draco sighed as he closed his eyes finally feeling the blessed numbness set in.
“Damnit Draco!” Harry growled as he hauled the blonde up and jostled him almost painfully. “You better be alright, I still need to kick your arse in Quidditch this year.”
“Did he kick your ass?” Sylvie asked softly, drawing Draco from the memory.
Draco laughed softly, “to hear him tell it, he did. To this day I still don’t know how he knew where I was, he swears he will tell me but he never does. He got me to the hospital wing, I don’t remember much but Harry was there...the whole time. We talked, alot, and struck up this odd friendship and that is, as they say, that.”
“What no declarations of love? Boring!”
“Well pardon us!” Corvus shouted up at them.
“Shut it ya foppy dickbag!”
“How my children wound me! Charlie do you hear this?”
“Not your child!” Sylvie yelled.
Draco snorted as he shook his head. “Has he always been this barmy?”
“Somewhat, he took me in after mom and dad were killed.” She sighed as she pulled away to rake her fingers through her hair. “Since we’re sharing tragic stories and all that, you may as well fully know mine. Mom hated Brookelyn, drove her nuts. She said that she missed the bayou and couldn’t hear the earth when she tried to garden in the apartment. We moved back down to Louisiana when I was nine...after I came back infected. Dad thought having the bayou to myself would help, and mom was excited to start up her shop again. She sold potion ingredients in the maj-communities and she was really successful. Then I went to Ilvermorny and I met Lyra. Mom loved Lyra to bits and pieces, thought that her parents were shitheads and loved Corvus too. I would spend some summers out here with Corvus and Lyra and their granny, they were extended family. When I was fifteen my parents were killed, they say it was just wrong place wrong time, mom and dad were just walking the streets of Naw’Lens and then they were just...gone. Corvus brought me here, I couldn’t control the wolf after that...I was...dangerous. I couldn’t even see Lyra in my grief.”
“They were killed by muggles?”
“So it would seem,” she sighed shaking her head. “Well..this turned morbid.”
Draco barked a laugh as he shook his head. “That it did. If your parents were killed...why didn’t you go to your fathers clan?”
She sat up and lifted her shirt, showing a strange marking on her side. “This marks me as a wolf...most clans don’t want to many in the caravan. And it was easier to mark me and get rid of me than to try to bring me in and give me a home because of my blood. Mom being gadje it made it easier for them to forget about me. When I chose to teach the other werewolves to control what they are it made my going back impossible. Not that it matters, Lyra and Corvus are my family now.” She glanced at him and smiled, “point of the story...no one here will judge you for the scars you hold.” Her eyes drifted to where Harry now lounged on the edge of the pool, the tattoo on his back fully on display, though the gypsy was too far away to make out the fine details of it. She smirked as she wrapped her arm around his waist. “You know what...I think we should join them.”
“Wait, what are you-”
“Geranimo!” She cackled as she tipped herself backwards, pulling Draco after her and they plummeted down into the water.
“Draco!” Harry scrambled from his position on the edge of the pool as the blonde broke the surface again with a gasp, flicking his hair back in a flurry of dark silver strands. The brunette gaped at the beauty that was the other man as the dark silk of his robe clung to each contour of his body. ‘Don’t react...don’t react...fuck he looks good.’ Harry thought to himself as he watched sylvie’s head bob along in the water as Draco glared at her.
“I will get you back for that Agent Rasputin. This was Chinese Silk!” he swam over and hauled himself up to where Harry was resting and the brunette was thankful he decided to lay on his stomach. “Merlin damned barmy bint.”
“Love you too!” Sylvie crackled as she pounced onto Blaise’s back and settled into conversation with the other wizards.
“You alright?” Harry asked softly, glancing up at Draco. He had been watching the two on the balcony and had worked to stamp out the jealousy at how close the werewolf seemed to be with the blonde.
Draco chuckled softly, “that’s an extremely loaded question Harry.”
“Still want to know though,” He reached out, his hand covering the mutilated dark mark.
Draco looked down at his hand, the dark skin of his friend standing out stark against his own marble pale flesh. “Yeah...yeah I think I am.” He said softly. Draco chewed on his lip as he looked up at Harry from under his lashes. “When we get back to England...I have something I want to ask you.”
Harry arched a brow, “Well now you have me curious.”
“Curiosity killed the cat,” Draco snorted, shrugging out of the sodden fabric and leaving his bare chest on display.
Harry’s eyes traced the curse lines that were still on display on the other man’s chest. He felt a lance that was one part sorrow for what he did and one part possession of seeing his mark on the other man. “Isn’t the other part of that saying ‘satisfaction brought it back’?”
“How astute of you, Potter.” Draco laughed pulling his hair over his shoulder to wring it out.
Harry felt something snap in his mind and he dragged the other down, pressing his lips to Draco’s soft ones. Time seemed to still, though Harry was terrified to push for more. For now the soft press of Draco’s lips to his was more than the darker male ever thought he would get. Silence settled over them and Harry pulled back to find grey eyes watching him, weary and filled with surprise and something that looked like hope. “That...was very satisfying.”
Draco rolled his eyes as his cheeks tinged pink and his lips twitched into a small pleased smile. “Damned Gryffindors,” he effectively shoved Harry off the edge and watched with no small amount of satisfaction as he crashed into the water.
“Finally!” Sylvie shouted from her perch on Blaise’s shoulders.
Corvus smacked a hand to Charlie’s stomach, “I won, pay up.”
“You honestly think I keep money in my swimpants?”
Draco rolled his eyes again as he stood up, “I’m going to bed!” He announced loudly, casting a shy glance at Harry before making his way inside.
“Well,” Neville mused as he swam back over with Lyra floating right beside him, “Italy just got a lot more interesting.”
Harry snorted as he splashed at his friend, his mind drifting to the blonde upstairs.
The next evening found the six Aurors in Venice, their target city. They had stopped in Rome to the Ministry, mostly a formality since none of the Italian Aurors were helping them investigate. They made their way through the city, Harry and Neville looking around the city in awe as they followed Lyra through the narrow streets. They came to a muggle hotel near the center of the city and she got them checked in and they made their way quickly up to the small high end suit they were all sharing. Once the door was shut the two American witches set up the wards and Harry let out a slow breath, raking his fingers through his unruly hair. “So we’re finally here, do we even have a plan?”
“Course we do! Care package courtesy of our beloved geek squad.” Sylive dropped a package onto the coffee table. “Who’s got the case notes?”
“Right here,” Neville said reaching into a pocket of his suitcase and pulling out the folder.
Lyra sighed as she moved into the small kitchen, “guessing we’re gonna order in tonight?”
“Probably,” Sylvie said taking the folder and, with Harry’s help, spread out the information.
“I’ll put some coffee on,” Lyra stretched her arms over her head and disappeared into the kitchen.
“Extra strong!” Sylvie called after her as she held out papers to Draco and a map to Blaise. “Let’s get crackin’ boys.”
~::~~::~~4 Hours Later~~::~~::~
Harry let out a long groan as he pulled his glasses off and rubbed at his eyes. “We’re getting nowhere! Dolohov’s writings are barmy as hell.”
“Giving up Potter?” Draco challenged, a tinge of strain in his voice.
“No! But we’ve been at this for-”
“EUREKA!” Sylvie shouted startling everyone as she sat up in a flurry of wild hair and papers.
Lyra looked up from where she was bent over the map with Neville. “Did you find something?”
“That symbol that Crazy Lord Douchington threw up!” She flipped the book around to show them, “I thought I knew what it was...I have something like it.” She pulled off her shirt and shifted around, pulling her hair out of the way and waving her hand over a portion of her neck. A curling dragon with its tail wrapped around its neck showed itself. “The Order of the Dragon, bastardized from what it was when one of the founders children turned out to be a Witch. Now we stand as guardians for those who practice magic. Their original job was to spread the message of the Crusades and spread Christianity all through Europe. Now we use it as a taunt of sorts, or at least my clan did.” She shrugged letting her hair back back into place as she picked up another file. “Now, if we take into consideration what he said when he killed himself and his journals we might find something….now….When Dolohov killed himself what was it that he said?”
“ Sanguinem castitate. ” Draco said flipping through the folder closest to him. “Which we already translated, roughly, to ‘blood purity’.”
“And the people with him, they were all purebloods right?”
“Yes,” Blaise nodded leaning back against the couch.
“Right, so from what you told us back when Voldey-moo-”
“Voldemort.” Lyra said.
“Baldy McBalderson!” Sylvie crowed loudly making the four wizards snort, Draco covering his mouth as his eyes watered with mirthful tears.
Lyra sighed shaking her head, “get on with it.”
“Right so it seems that whoever this….person is has somewhat the same obsession, only this time around we don’t know what the goal is. Dolohov wrote down that this person, who’s only known by the letter A, has goals grander than the ‘Dark Lord’ could have ever hoped. We need to find out who this A person is. We also know where they are going to be, which puts us at an advantage.”
“We have three purebloods who can get in as guests, and the other three of us can get in by other means.” She glanced over at Harry and Neville and arched an eyebrow at them, “how flexible are you two?”
The day of the party is finally upon us. Power flows through me and I find myself wondering...would he be proud? I wonder what he thinks now, seeing his heir parade around with filth. Staining the name he worked so hard to make respectable, to be on the same level as ‘powerful’. Maybe if he had seen...maybe then he would have accepted me. Taken me away from that hell...from that woman. But...can’t think on that tonight, no not tonight. Tonight is solidifying my place and showing them, even you brother, that I am more than deserving than you.
~~::~~::~~3 days later~~::~~::~
“Where is she?” Harry growled as he watched the sun setting over the city through the window.
“She’ll be here,” Lyra said, as she carefully applied her makeup. She sat on the floor with a mirror propped up in front of her and a pale blue eyeshadow kit next to her as she carefully applied her makeup to her new face. A glittering diamond ring sat on her finger and acted as her glamour which turned her dark hair strawberry blonde and her eyes a stunning green/blue while lightening her skin tone and erasing her freckles. She wore a pale blue dress with a silver twin train that ran from her shoulders and and the very gown rested off her shoulders as well. The magic behind the ring went way over Harry’s pay grade, but from what he understood their team had somehow incorporated runes and high end tech to make a masking spell that was stronger than any polyjuice potion.
“I don’t even understand where she went.” Draco said as he walked out from the rooms behind Harry.
The other man turned and nearly jumped out of skin, “bloody hell! Warn someone before you put a damned glamour on, I nearly hexed you.”
Draco smirked as he arched a dark brow, “you literally saw me walk into our room with the glamour ring in hand,” he said as he held up the hand with the signet ring sitting on it. The glamour had broadened his features to give him a stronger jawline and darkened his hair to a stunning midnight black. His eyes were an icy blue now instead of the normal stormy grey and Harry felt a pang in his heart for her partners normal eye color. “Did I scare you Potter?”
Harry rolled his eyes, though he traced over the high end suit that clung to Draco’s body like it was made for him. “At least you retired that old line from school.”
“After like twelve years,” Blaise groused as he stepped into the living room in his own suit, adjusting the ring on his finger. His hair was more curled now but still the same black as his original hair but his skin was a few shades lighter than his normal tone. His jaw was squared out and his lips fuller with his eyes taking on a cerulean hue. He paused in the doorway to the hall and smirked at Harry. “Well damn, you look good Potter.”
Harry shrugged as he folded his arms over his chest, fingering the armband around his right bicep that held his own glamour. His hair was a deep chestnut brown now and styled up in a faux hawk and his normally gem green eyes were now a dark and soulful brown. His bronze skin was now a dusty golden color giving him a healthy glow and each of his scars and tattoos were hidden behind the magic. His chest was bare and he wore a pair of soft pants that were a deep blue and strange shoes that were oddly comfortable and easy to move in, the matching jacket to his costume rested on the back of the couch. “I don’t understand why Neville and I have to go around like this.”
“Don’t complain for me, I actually like this.” Neville laughed walking out of the kitchen, his skin hadn’t changed much with the glamour though had more of an olive undertone now. His normally dark hair was now a deep auburn with hints of gold and his eyes were the color of whiskey. “These pants are comfortable as hell.” He dropped down to sit behind Lyra and watch her apply her makeup.
The door slammed open making each Auror jolt and go for their wands as Sylvie shuffled her way in. “It’s just me ya dumbasses.” She grumbled, “no one else would be able to get past the wards to fling the door open.” She wasn’t wearing her glamour and her left eye was swollen and slightly purple with blood dripping steadily from her nose. “But good news...we’re in...bad news….you don’t wanna know how I got us in.”
Harry’s brow drew down as he looked at her, “what do you mean?”
“Did I literally just say you don't wanna know?” Sylvie groaned as she dropped into an armchair and held her wrist close to her chest.
“You look like hell...and we don’t know what we are walking into. So yeah we kind of need to know.” Harry said, watching Lyra scoot closer to her to start healing her battered face.
“Whoever this ‘A’ person is...he hired a gypsy troupe to perform tonight. The troupe he hired though...they are extreme even by our standards. They believe that they are superior both in blood and magic. They demand to be included in all parts of magical society and would risk the Merlin and Morgana Treaties to do so and be on top.”
“How did you convince them to leave?” Blaise asked as he stepped closer to her, his hand resting at the base of her neck and his thumb tracing her pulse point.
“We settled it the old way. A good old fashion brawl. You think I look bad? You should see the other guy.” She smirked as Lyra’s spell took down her swelling in her eye and cleaned up the blood from her nose. “Winner took the party, it might come back and bite me in the ass but I got us in and that’s the important thing. But if he’s gathering not only the pureblood elites but the gypsies too...that’s not something to snort at. 90% of us don’t want shit to do with this world because we’re happy doing our own little thing in our caravans...but the others, some want recognition for the power we hold. Most wizards need a wand to harness their magic, get a small strike team of wandless wielding witches and wizards behind you and you can cause some major damage.” She sighed as she stood up, Blaise’s hand on her waist as she swayed on her feet. “I’m good...I’m good just...headrush. I need to get dressed and we gotta go.” She paused as she looked everyone over, “damn you all look good.” She laughed as she made her way to the room she shared with Lyra.
“The more I hear about this...the more I fear that we might be in over our heads.” Lyra muttered.
Neville frowned as he gently touched her shoulder and she brought her hand up to clutch at his. “It’s going to be alright, we’re going to stop this before anyone else gets hurt.”
Harry sighed as he slipped into the kitchen for a drink. He wasn’t a fan of all the sneaking around, the need for disguises, he was the one who ran in head first and fired spells before asking questions. Granted it was something that landed him in St. Mungos more than anything else in his life but it got the job done and made the world a little safer with each person he caught. He sighed as he lifted his glass to his lips, pausing as he felt a rival energy wash over him and he turned his head to see Draco resting against the doorframe. “You know, it’s really disorinating to see you but not see...you.”
Draco snorted, and even the borrowed face couldn’t mask a look that was so Draco. “Believe me it’s hard to hear your voice and not see your face.”
Harry set his glass down and stepped closer to the other man, instantly missing the stormy grey eyes and ice blonde hair. “Draco about that-”
“Can we not do this right now Harry?” The other caught the hurt look that flashed across the man’s face and he sighed as he lifted his hand to cup his cheek, thumb tracing over the now smooth flesh that was there. “I didn't mean..I can’t have these thoughts distracting me tonight. We’ll talk alright?”
Harry sighed and pressed into his palm. “When? We haven’t talked about it at all...it’s kinda hurting my pride here.” he tried to joke, though the arched eyebrow from the pureblood let him know it didn’t land.
“Damn Gryffindor’s and your pride. Perhaps you shouldn’t have kissed me in the middle of a mission.”
“Perhaps you shouldn’t be so kissable then.” Harry smirked.
“Oy!” Blaise yelled from the living room, “stop snogging and get in here.”
Draco rolled his eyes but gave Harry a small smile as he slipped back and they both walked into the living room only to stop dead in their tracks as they saw Sylvie in her glamour. Her transformation was the most drastic. Her tri colored hair was now as black as tar and done in multiple braids down her back, her lively green eyes were now dark as the very depths of hell with flecks of brown and gold and her skin was just shy of being a full ebony goddess. “Finally,” the lit of her voice did not match her new body and a small ripple of laughter rippled through the group. “Yeah, yeah laugh it up Yanks. Here.” she tossed out little baggies and nodded. “Communicators, our Tech team designed them after the headsets that the Secret Service uses at the White House.”
“Only you can’t see these ones once you put them in. They run off our magical signature and link to the closest communicators near you. All you have to do is pinch them between your fingers for thirty seconds to get it assigned to you and boom...instant communication to partners.” Lyra said brightly.
“So, Blaise will have Neville’s wand, Lyra will have mine, and Draco will have Harry’s. I’ll be up on the trapeze keeping an eye from the sky while Neville and Harry work the floor. Blaise, Draco and Lyra will mingle and gather names if they use their real ones and tag interesting parties with these.” She lifted up another small baggie filled with little black discs. “Slip this onto someone and their magical signature will feed back to my system at the Villa. They’ll expect a show from the performance team before this ‘main event’ but remember...Do...Not...Engage.” She looked at each of the men, her voice harder than Shacklebots ever could get and it made them snap to attention. “I know we’re on your turf boys but this is still an MCUSA case. Track people, make notes on the names they give you, mingle, hell flirt for all I care anything to get information but do not fuck up my case. Do not cause a scene no matter what you see happen, I realize our first instinct is to protect but we need to shelve that, our mingle team can’t risk being found out and our performance team can’t be outed as the troupe that wasn’t hired on the first place. We’re on borrowed time boys, the glamour bands last a max of six hours on a good day, and I can feel it in my bones that tonight will give us the answers we have desperately been searching for.”
The wizards were stunned by the woman, gaping at how she took command as Lyra simply smirked at them. “Oh...did we forget to mention that Sylvie is the head of the L.I.P?” She shrugged with a giggle as she passed out the masks. “C’mon folks, we’ve got a party to get to.”
The Manor that stood at the edge of Venice was where the party would be held, a spell around the grounds to keep the muggles away and Draco let out a slow breath. It reminded him entirely too much of the last few years at his childhood home. Dark magic sang through the very stone and it left a sort of spider web like film against his flesh. He was thankful for the mask he wore that covered ¾ of his face to hide his discomfort as he tried to call upon his pureblood teachings to keep his face schooled into a cool detachment. He felt Lyra squeeze his hand gently and he glanced to her, her masked eyes looking at him from behind her own mask. Blaise was behind them, his own mask firmly in place though his mask only covered the upper half of his face. He felt the other man’s hand brush against his lower back and drew strength from the other two purebloods he knew were on his side. The massive doors swung open and the trio entered slowly, taking in the dark fabrics and floating candles. Bodies danced along the black marble floor, swirls of fine fabric and glittering masks and Draco felt his anxiety spike as flashes of his childhood flitted through his brain.
“Relax, I can see you tense all the way over here.” Harry’s voice drifted through his ear and Draco’s eyes snapped around to catch sight of the man sweeping through the room. “You’re the Prince of Slytherin, you can do this.”
“Subtle.” Blaise laughed, “let’s hope he didn't say that to loud.”
“He’s right though, you need to relax,” Lyra said softly smiling and inclining her head to a couple as they passed. “What was the first thing you were taught from the moment you could walk?”
“Emotions are a sign of weakness,” He muttered softly.
Lyra nodded, a fake smile plastered onto her face as they effortlessly glided through the crowd to the main hall. “Remember to smile.”
“Lord and Lady Arlson of Reykjavik and Lord M’Baku of Ciro.” the man dressed as a lavish jester's outfit cried, his wand at his throat to magnify his voice. The sea of people parted and the trio made their way through, catching sight of Harry and Neville as the two men settled into their roles. They caught sight of flames and saw as Harry blew a stream of fire into the air to the awe of the people gathered around his pedestal. Neville was several paces away, juggling knives with grace and ease that had shocked the other Aurors when he admitted he dabbled in juggling. Draco caught Harry’s eyes, feeling a flash of heat as he watched that smirk curl before he spat more fire. Lyra tugged the other man along gently, guiding her team up the small steps of a raised platform to where a throne like chair sat and a man rested lazily in said chair. His outfit was near identical to the Phantom from the masquerade scene from the play with the exception of the strange ouroboros burned into the forehead of the bone mask.
“Reykjavik and Ciro?” The man asked, a lazy lit to his voice that blurred all semblance of an accent. “Iceland and Egypt respectively. How did you hear about my little party?”
“A mutual friend,” Blaise said smoothly, his voice dripping with a flawless Arabic accent. “We had been invited to Venice by Lord Dolohov.”
“You heard what happened to him?” The man in red asked.
“Yes,” Draco hummed, resting his hand over Lyras and ensuring that his signet ring flashed in the candle light of the room. He felt his skin crawling, but he took a page out of Lucius Malfoy’s book in how to hold himself, a shark among piranha. “A pitiful display since it had been done some twenty years ago and hardly had better results.”
“Was it? You were there?”
“In passing, my wife and I had a business meeting to see about our company supplying potions and ingredients to some of the more high end shops in the London area.”
“Fascinating, well you are among peers here so please mingle and enjoy the entertainment.” The man smirked under his mask, his pale grey eyes taking on a dangerous glint that struck something in Draco. “I do hope you will stay until the clock chimes midnight we have a...special presentation, I would hate for anyone to miss it.” His eyes lingered on Draco but the trio quickly moved away, losing themselves in the crowd and picking up goblets as they came by.
“I wouldn’t drink anything...or eat anything for that matter.” Sylvie’s voice broke over their communicators and the men snapped around, looking to see if they could spy the woman.
“Where are you?” Blaise hissed.
Lyra tapped his shoulder, pointing up with a small smirk and Blaise and Draco looked up to see the gypsy standing on a bannister on the second level of the ballroom. Her costume glittered in the candle light and she clapped her hands together and summoned the swinging bar to her hands. Blaise’s jaw dropped as she soared through the air with grace and ease, the crowd around them gasped and clapped as she glided, the tails of her costume flowing behind her like grand wings and she let the bar go, flipping through the air to grip a tight rope that held her suspended above them. Lyra giggled as she reached over and gently shut Blaise’s mouth with a click “Mission first, lover boy. She’s got a birds eye view, we need to mingle.”
Blaise shook his head and nodded, “keep in touch and we don’t know who is here.”
They watched as Sylvie swung herself around the rope and landed lightly on her feet above their heads. They joined in the scattered applause around them before Blaise drifted off to mingle as Draco and Lyra made their own rounds. Each one of them tagging a few people here or there, Draco’s eyes constantly tracking the ‘host’ of the evening who never moved from his throne. An hour passed and the two found themselves drawn to the small crowd near where Harry was performing, a few men and some women were watching with rapt attention behind their masks.
“Why would our dear host get such...plebeian entertainment?” A voice drifted over to Draco and made him stop in his tracks, nearly upending Lyra as he pulled her sharply to a stop. The voice came from a tall man in deep crimson dress robes with an elaborate goblin mask.
Lyra cast a sharp look at Draco from behind her mask and he shook his head, “we have a problem.” he muttered watching as Harry cast them a flance from his spot behind the flames.
“ Not something I wanna hear in the middle of a high stakes infiltration mission .” Sylvie chided as she flipped back on the rope.
“ Who do you have eyes on? ” Blaise asked, locking eyes with his old friend from across the room and Lyra stepped closer to Draco.
“Nott,” Draco hid a wince as Blaise swore blew in his ear.
“I would think the skimpy outfits would be to your taste love .” An acidic voice hummed and Draco very nearly reached out to pull the owner of said voice to him.
“Pansy is here too,” he muttered into the communicator.
“ Bloody hell. ” Blaise groaned.
“Remember the mission,” Lyra said as they slid into place.
“Not enjoying the entertainment?” Draco asked, watching as Nott and Pansy looked over to him and he saw Pansy’s eyes go wide behind her mask before her face schooled itself into cool detachment
“They’re gypsies...hardly better than mudbloods.” Nott snorted, looking them over. “And who are you?”
“Sven Arlson, this is my wife Frejya.”
“How...exotic. Theodore Nott, this is my wife Pansy.”
“A pleasure,” Draco said softly as he lifted Pansy’s hand to his lips brushing a kiss to her knuckles. “Surely you know that most of the gypsies are purebloods. They rarely allow outsiders into their ranks.”
“They are not part of civil society. Those damned accords leave them to think they are better than those of us in the heart of wizarding society.”
“Theo,” Pansy hissed earning a glare from her husband.
“It’s true,” Nott sniffed shaking his head and turning his back to Harry who glared at him. “I am waiting for this ‘enlightening entertainment’ that the host has promised. Of course I’m wondering about the caliber of the people gathered since I saw Slughorn boasting by the refreshment table.” Nott shook his head and held out his hand to Lyra, “may I have this dance Lady Arlson? It’ll be a vast improvement in partners.” He cast a glare to Pansy as he lead Lyra to the dancefloor.
Draco opened his mouth to say something when Pansy glared at him, “be quite...come with me.” She hissed dragging the man to a shadowed alcove. “What are you doing here? How the bloody hell did you even get here?”
“ Don’t blow your cover Malfoy! What the hell are you doing?” Sylvie hissed in his ear.
“ Trust him, Agent,” Harry said softly.
“How did you know it was me?” Draco asked her softly.
A soft look passed in her eyes, “I’ve only known you since we were babies. I’d know your voice anywhere.” She shook her head, “you need to get out of here. It’s dangerous.”
“We’re here under the Ministry orders, Pans...I can’t just leave in the middle of a mission.”
“Under the...who’s with you?”
“I can’t tell you that Pans.” He looked out to see Lyra leaning away from something Nott was saying. “When did you get married to him? Why didn’t Blaise and I know?”
“He didn’t want you there, says you both are traitors to your kind. That’s why we’re here...this ‘A’ person says he’s going to do what the Dark Lord couldn’t.”
Draco felt a sliver of fear drip down his spine and he gripped her hands. “What do you mean?”
“Ladies and gentlemen!” A voice boomed drawing everyone's attention to the center dias where the man in red stood with a wand at his throat to magnify his voice. “If you would all join me, the midnight hour is upon us and thus we will harold in a new day, a new...era. For too long we have set our power aside, feared it when it makes us powerful. Better than those around us. We harness the very elements and can bend things to our will but still we hide.”
A murmur went through the crowd and Draco felt Pansy’s hands grip his arm tightly. He glanced up to see Blaise making his way through the crowd as Lyra broke away from Nott and slipped into the sea of people. Harry and Neville were kneeling down on the pedestal while Sylvie hung suspended above them. Draco looked down at his friend and shook his head, “stay close Pans.” He whispered.
“ What are you doing?” Sylvie hissed in his ear.
“Keeping my friend safe. She’s not part of this.”
“ You don’t know that!”
Draco lifted his eyes to hers and glared right back. “She’s staying with me.”
“Trust him Agent, Pansy is good people.”
“I hate to break this up,” Neville said, “But he’s got Professor Slughorn on stage…”
All eyes snapped to the stage and Draco watched as the man in red stepped behind their old potions professor. “For to long we have let the impure and the mud mix in with our blood.” He announced, “to long we have allowed our children to be corrupted by the teachings of our lessers. To allow them to take what is ours and squander it. No more! We will raise the blood, raise the standards, and show the world that we are their betters! Sanguinem castitate !”
“Now see here young man,” Slughorn huffed as he turned. “That sort of thinking-”
Without another word green light shot from the end of the man in red’s wand and Slughorn dropped with a dull thud to the dias. “We will cleanse our blood and bring back purity back to where it should have never dropped from.”
Chants of ‘ sanguinem castitate’ flowed through the room and the hidden six aurors stood stunned, eyes glued to where Slughorn lay unmoving. A shriek drew their attention as a woman in an elaborate peacock gown and mask pointed up to Harry. “Auror!” She yelled.
Draco looked up seeing that Harry’s glamour failing and his natural looks sliding back into place. They watched as the man in red turned to point his wand at Harry. “ Plan A is shot...time for plan R.”
“ Run!” Sylvie swung herself forward and grabbed Harry by the hand hauling him after her and barely missing a well timed silent spell. Draco felt Harry’s wand fly out of his jacket and saw Neville and Sylvie calling their own.
“ Stupify. ” Draco said softly to the man to his left as he grabbed Pansy’s hand. “Still remember how to duel?”
“Yes!” Pansy gasped drawing her own wand.
“ Front doors a no go! Why the fuck did Potter’s band fail it’s only been three hours!” Sylvie shouted in their ears
“Then we cut a way through the back!” Blaise pointed his wand sending a shockwave that sent people in their finery flying. Blaise and Draco darted forward, Lyra bringing up the rear, they felt a rush of air as Sylvie sailed over their heads and dropped Harry onto the upper bannister and swung back for Neville while Harry dropped a rope over the edge. “Get up there Pans,” Blaise barked as he deflected a spell.
Pansy quickly scrambled for the rope, pulling herself up while Lyra, Blaise and Draco kept the attackers at bay. Sylvie and Neville dropped above them and threw more supporting spells, once Pansy was safe the two men continued to fire spells as Lyra climbed up after her. “Blaise you next, I can handle this just get up there and cover me!” Draco nodded as Blaise began to climb, a stinging hex caught him in the shoulder and the blonde hissed flinging a silent explosive spell to the floor to disrupt the ones coming after them.
“Lets go! Haul your skinny, white ass!” Sylvie yelled, throwing up a protection spell that rebounded a nasty unforgivable.
Draco hauled himself up the rope, reminded of his training as an Auror when he was younger and he felt a strong hand close around his arms to haul him up. He grunted as he hit the bannisters edge with his ribs and rolled over the side, hitting the marble hard. He blinked the stars from his eyes and clapped hands with Harry as the other man hauled him up.
“Alright, we don’t have time to regroup. We gotta get the fuck outta here!” Sylvie snapped, ducking a spell and flinging her own back.
“This way!” Lyra yelled as she lead the group through a side hall.
The group heard the pounding of feet behind them and Sylvie skidded to a stop looking down a hall. “There’s our way out folks. Can everyone swim?”
“Swim?! What are you-”
“Everyone take this!” Lyra yelled as she tossed glass vials to them, booking it down the hall.
“The only way out is to use the tide,” Sylvie said.
“What is this?” Blaise asked.
“Gillyweed!” Neville called.
“Not again!” Harry groaned downing the plant in the bottle. “It’s fourth year all over again!”
“At least there’s no- expelliarmus!- ’Potter Stinks’ badges!” Draco laughed as he downed what was in the bottle, his stomach knotted with anxiety. Pansy, Blaise, and Harry tossing back the chewy herb and each making a face as they barreled forward.
“Get them you fools!” A man’s voice shouted, “don’t let them get away.”
“Get ready to jump!” Sylvie threw up her hand, a wandless and wordless spell shattering the window as the small group dove out the window and into the churning waters below.
Chapter by Dark_Huntress_Moony
Finally after two weeks of being sick and just having an absolutely shitty time we have a chapter!
Also this is a little gift for my lovely little Beta.
Happy birthday my puff, you are a pain in my ass but I love you anyway!
Harry gasped as he broke the surface of the water and shook his head, thankful he had putin his contacts for the day. He heard another gasp and turned to see Draco, the real Draco, break the surface too with Pansy and Blaise next to him. “You three ok?” He asked as he swam over.
“You Auror’s couldn’t think of a better escape? This gown was Chinese silk!” Pansy huffed, her makeup running down her face. Harry had to bite back the laugh as her hair fell in lackluster strands around her for fear of her hexing him.
“That is Mahogany!” Sylvie yelled as she paddled past, “what were we talking about?”
“Heathens...Heathens and Gryffindors.” She glared at Draco who shrugged as he bobbed in the water.
“Amazing!” Neville laughed as he surfaced, “so the amount of gillyweed determines how long the effects are. When Harry used it back in fourth year it only lasted him an hour.”
“Right?” Lyra giggled as she swiped away her own makeup. “It’s great for quick aquatic getaways.”
Sylvie swam by them, her face a mask of irritation as her hair trailed out behind her. “Great, I smell like wet dog and Lyra’s a breath of fresh air that can flirt at the drop of a hat.” She huffed leading them to a set of stairs.
Harry bit back another laugh as they followed her out of the water and climbed up to a house. Lyra tapped on the door and smiled brilliantly at the elderly man who was dressed for bed. The man launched into a tirade in Italian when Sylvie sighed and stepped forward tapping her finger to the man’s forehead, “shh.” she muttered, catching him as he pitched forward. The British wizards watched as she carefully carried the man into the house and set him in a cozy looking chair with a blanket over his sleeping form. She clapped her hands together, dusting them off, and turned to see them staring. “What?”
“What the bloody hell was that?” Draco asked.
“What? He was going to cause a scene at two in the morning and we need an emergency floo. I just put him to sleep...no biggie.” The werewolf said with a shrug.
“No...biggie?” Draco gapes at her with an incredulous expression. “No biggie is when you accidentally transfigure the fine china into doves...or...or blow up your aunt into a blimp.”
“Hey!” Harry yelped.
“You just did wandless and essentially wordless magic and knocking out a muggle with what looks like a modified sleeping spell.”
“Gypsy,” she said with a shrug before moving to the fireplace. “C’mon more tracks we make the better I’ll feel also I want a shower.”
A few hours later had the seven witches and wizards stumbling through the offices of the Rosewood Winery and a stern woman hustling them out into a waiting carriage. The ride to the villa was mostly silent, the sky starting to turn pink as the sun rose and Sylvie casting suspicious glances to Pansy who was situated between Blaise and Draco.
“Why did we bring her along?”
“Because, Agent, there is no way she is part of that mess back there.” Draco ground out, his hand wrapping around Pansy’s and Harry wanted nothing more than to reach out to the blonde.
“Dray,” Pansy said softly. “She has every right to be wary. I will answer anything I can, just...please don’t make me go back there...back to him.”
“Then we need answers.”
“Syl, look at her.” Lyra said softly, leaning into her friend. “She’s likely a battered wife, goddess knows I saw enough of this in pureblood society back home, you also didn’t have to deal with that pig Nott.”
“If that’s his name,” Sylvie snorted.
“Oh it is.” Blaise rumbled, his own temper brewing under his skin. “We had our moments of being bullies but Nott was a real piece of work.”
“Understatement,” Neville muttered sharing a look with Harry.
“Right,” Sylvie slowly drawled, “so after the fall of Voldey McBaldbutt-”
Pansy gaped at the woman before dissolving into a fit of laughter. “Sweet Morgana, where did the Auror Department find you?”
“We’re Agents on loan from the MCUSA,” Lyra said with a sweet smile.
“That explains it,” Pansy chuckled softly. “Americans.”
The carriage pulled to a stop and everyone slipped out to see Corvus standing at the top of the stairs, framed by the grand doorway to the villa. He wore a gauzy black robe that flowed around him and fluttered in the early morning breeze as he smoked from his geisha pipe. He flicked his wrist to look at his watch and arched an eyebrow at them, “you’re late.”
Sylvie and Lyra rolled their eyes as they slowly climbed the steps, the other trailing behind them as everyone's fatigue began to show. “Things got...complicated.” the werewolf muttered as she rubbed the back of her neck.
“I see this...I also see a new face,” the older man pulled his wand from his sleeve and flicked it, bringing forth two bowls that caused Sylvie to give an animalistic groan of pleasure as she took the bowls and scampered off. “Don’t mind her, she’s cranky without her after mission chips and salsa. Welcome to my home Ms-”
Corvus’s eyes went wide as he grinned and rushed down to her. “Pansy Nott? The Pansy Nott, fashion designer extraordinaire?! Oh how lovely! Come come we will get you settled.” He smiled as he swept around in a flourish of gauzy material and swept the woman away. “Draco you’ll be a gentleman and give up your room yes?” He called over his shoulder.
Harry laughed as Draco rolled his eyes, “you can sleep with me...ROOM….Room with me.” Harry felt his cheeks flush as he rubbed the back of his neck.
“Thanks,” the blonde laughed softly as he nudged Harry with his shoulder. The others slowly dispersed, Blaise breaking off to go and crash in his own room while Lyra and Neville headed for the greenhouse to talk about plants. Draco knew that Pansy was safe in Corvus’s hands and he trailed after Harry to the darker males rooms, catching the faint scent of ocean water and sea life. Draco pulled a face as he Accio’d his bags to let them float into Harry’s room. The brunette slowly closed the door behind them and reached out for the blonde, dragging him close. They still smelled of the canals yet neither cared as they rested their foreheads against each other.
“We smell like a blige,” Draco muttered.
“Mmm…” Harry closed his eyes, said eyes irritated by his contacts from the sea water.
“We’re also covered in salt.”
“Yeah,” silence fell over them and Harry opened his eyes to see Draco giving him an unamused look. “What?”
“Gods you’re dense,” Draco growled as he surged forward and claimed the others lips. “If you don’t come and shower with me I’m going to hex you.”
Harry grinned as he scooped the other man up, making him yelp and wrap his arms around his neck tightly, and made his way to the ensuite bathroom. He waved his hand to start the shower, earning another glare from Draco that was softened by the blaizing lust behind his stormy grey eyes and the flush on his high cheekbones.
“Bloody show off,” the blonde muttered.
“You love it,” Harry grinned.
“Merlin help me...I do.” Draco shifted, making him put him down and he reached up to slide his fingers under the stiff jacket and off of Harry’s broad shoulders. He felt Harry’s arms circle his waist and found himself pressed hard against a wall of solid muscle as the brunette and Harry’s lips once again found his. This kiss was harder, more desperate, as if they were pouring the last twenty years of longing into each other, as if this kiss would be their last. Draco felt the tingle of magic race over his skin as he felt the steaming air of the bathroom caress his skin. He pulled back with a gasp and looked down to see their clothing had vanished. That careless act of magic made the blonde whimper and hold onto Harry tightly. “Bloody Hell…”
“Twenty years Draco...I’m tired of waiting.” Harry growled against his cheek, stubble scraping against pale skin. “Tell me you don’t want this and I’ll stop but...fuck...please want this.”
Draco smirked as he stepped back into the shower holding the door open. “Scared Potter?”
Harry growled again as he stalked forward, hungry intent in his emerald eyes, as he crowded Draco against the shower wall. Quidditch-roughened hands slid down the smooth expanse of his pale arms, enjoying the feel of soft skin under his fingertips. He gripped the deceptively fine bones of the blondes wrists and pulled them up, pressing his lips to his knuckles before pinning them to the wall overhead. One of Harry’s muscular thighs slid between Draco’s legs, both men gasping at the full contact and Draco shifting against the solid thigh between his own. Harry dipped his head again as he encouraged the other to ride against his thigh, his tongue flicking against the seam of Dracos lips and begging for entrance. Once granted, a small whimper left the blonde as Harry completely dominated him.
Draco gave himself over as his fingers flexed and his hips shifted forward, the ridged length of his cock sliding along solid muscle. He broke the kiss with a small moan, letting his forehead rest against Harry’s as his eyes slid closed. “H-Harry...please.”
Harry’s lips trailed along Draco’s cheekbone, his stubble scraping lightly before he kissed just below his ear. “What do you want Draco?” He growled softly.
“You...I want you.” Draco panted, his fingers flexing as he tried to press closer to the darker skinned male. Grey eyes looked down and gasped as he saw his pale, aching cock resting against the deep tan of Harry’s skin. A trembling moan left his lips as he bucked forward seeking more contact.
“How do you want me Draco?” Harry asked, “tell me.”
The command ripped through the blonde, nearly knocking the breath from him as he trembled. “I want….I want you...I want to feel you. Please Harry...don’t make me wait.” The rush of what they just went through in the last twelve hours finally hit the blonde and desperation to finally have what's been dangled in front of him driving him to new heights and making him more desperate than he normally would be. “Not anymore...please...Harry…”
Harry kissed him gently, “shh, it’s alright love. I’m here. You don’t have to wait.” A mumbled spell and the blonde arched as he felt Harry’s magic race over his skin. His mind went nearly blank as his cock pulsed against Harry’s thigh and he felt rough hands slide down his sides and grip his hips.
“I’m right here, Dray.” Harry whispered capturing his lips again as he slid his hands down to grip the meat of Draco’s thighs and haul him up. He guided the slighter man up and into position, groaning softly as his cock slid between Draco’s cheeks, the conjured lube making the slide smooth and everything he had ever hoped for. “Are you-”
“Please Harry, just...fuck please. I need to feel you.”
“Fuck...fuck alright,” Harry groaned as he positioned himself and slowly began to push forward.
Draco gasped as his back arched, his nails dragging along Harry’s shoulders. “Harry...fucking hell Harry.” He panted feeling the darker males forehead drop to his shoulder as he bottomed out. Harry was thicker than anyone he had been with previously and it felt beyond perfect. “Fucking hell Potter if you don’t move I will hex you.”
Harry chuckled breathlessly, “you keep threatening to hex me but which one of us can do wandless magic?” He asked as he slowly dragged out.
Draco glared and opened his mouth to say something when Harry snapped his hips forward, burying himself back into the blonde. “Merlin!”
“Actually it’s Harry...just Harry.” The brunette hissed as he felt Draco’s fingers claw into his hair and pulled roughly, sending races of lust down his back at the tickle of pain. “Fuck Draco.”
“That’s the general idea, now if you would be so kind.”
Harry growled as he tightened his grip on the blonde and began to roll his hips forward. The only sound that filled the bathroom were the sound of running water and skin slapping against skin. “W..wanted to take...this slow...but...fuck-”
“Slow later,” Draco panted, flexing his inner muscles and gasping as Harry’s teeth sank into his shoulder. “Need you now...need to feel-”
“Yeah...yeah,” Harry agreed, shushing him gently as he kissed his way up to his lips. The inferno in his belly raged as he felt himself pushed to the edge, but he desperately wanted Draco to join him there. “Dray…” His hand snaked from the blonde’s thigh to wrap around his weeping length.
“Harry!” Draco gasped, arching his back nearly violently as pleasure raced through his system. His head fell back to the wall and he felt Harry’s lips on his throat, knowing the other was marking him and not giving a flying fuck. His head spun as each thrust, each stroke of his cock, sent him spiraling higher. “Harry please...I’m so close.”
“Cum for me Dray, show me that you’re enjoying this.” Harry growled against his hips shifted his angle and he felt Draco’s cock jump in his hands as he hit his prostate.
The blonde trembled as his eyes slide closed and his nails dragged down Harry’s back and he came with a cry. His arms slid around Harry’s neck as he pressed soft, small kisses along Harry’s jaw and lips. “Please...please,” he begged brokenly as waves and waves of pleasure threatened to drag him under.
“Draco...fuck...you’re so perfect, so beautiful, and only mine.” Harry growled as he snapped his hips forward three more times before stilling and spilling into the whimpering blonde. He braced an arm on the wall as his legs threatened to give out. He gently lowered them to the floor of the shower, smiling softly as he felt Draco nuzzle into his neck. “Fuck Dray...If I had known you-”
“Say one more word Potter-”
“You’ll hex me,” Harry hummed, laughing softly. “So you’ve said.” The brunette hissed as Draco clenched on him in retaliation and bit him back.
“Fucking Gryffindors,” Draco muttered half heartedly as his head swam with a sudden rush of drowsiness.
“Hey, don’t fall asleep on me. We still need to shower.”
Draco groaned as he gently began to extract himself, both men groaning at the loss of Harry’s cock buried within him. The blonde leaned back against the wall, panting softly, and trembling as he felt Harry’s thumbs drag lightly against his inner thighs. A smile pulled at thin lips as hooded grey eyes met emerald. He lifted his hands, vehemently denying the tremble that was there, as he drew the darker male close and they shared soft kisses under the spray of the shower as they slowly started to clean each other off. Once their shower was finished they stumbled into the bedroom, never letting go from one another as they fell into the bed. Draco shifted, one of his legs tangling with Harry’s as his head rested over the steady beat of his heart and his eyes closed in bliss as Harry’s fingers toyed in his hair. With a gentle sigh, both men slipped into sleep still wrapped up in each other and feeling like the real world was thousands of miles away.