Skull couldn´t sleep.
The nightmares lessened with time, but sometimes. Combined with certain triggers they tended to haunt him even now. Bloody forty two years later.He trashed in the bed, turning left, right. Finally he flopped on his belly. Argh, okay okay he understood. Tonight no sleep for him. Well, it would certainly not be the first time.
Skull got up and dressed, leaving the usual lipstick, make-up and his piercing. Only the tape on his face was a must. The scars. He needed to hide the scars no matter what. He knew he was a master in hiding his true self. He had done it for almost thirty years now. Not one of the Acrobaleno had suspected anything.
Well, he was the loudmouth stupid lackey after all...who wouldn´t be able to hide a thing if his life depended on it. Ha...he wished it was so easy.
He scrutinized himself in the mirror. He hadn´t aged since he was twenty one. Thank the gods for those four years of mercy...if he had stopped aging right after he had gathered all three cursed items... This way he at least filled out a tiny bit, and grew to a normal height...for a woman that is. But he was never one to weep over spilled milk. He had learned long ago that if you couldn´t change something, then it would bring only pain to fight that fact.
Even though he still sometimes fell into deep melancholy. Why did it have to be him? Why did he have to suffer for all eternity?
And it will be all fucking eternity, yes because even if he died he would wake up right after. Healed, that is. Not that dying was nice, no not at all. He felt pain like every human being. He just couldn´t bite the grass, stay under, go for the next adventure...
Fucking Potter luck!
Fate had decided he would be her plaything, that had to be it. He sighed and brushed his hand through his hair. Purple hair, he smiled slightly. Purple was Teddy´s favorite color...before that day... The day they most of them died.
Leaving him forever alone!
Hasty he packed those memories back behind thick occlumency walls in his mind. After Sirius was killed in fifth year he took to learning about everything. Everything, which could somehow remotely help him win the war, without losing to many lives. Dueling, occlumency, legilimency, healing, potions, martial arts... He didn´t even falter before the dark arts, one had to know the enemy, had to know which spells they would throw at you. He was by no means a light wizard. No, he had steeled his resolve after Sirius death, they would not be able to win with just stunners. They had to go for maiming or killing. They had to put the Death Eaters out of order. Or they would bloody well come back, more vicious than before.
As one could probably guess, Dumbledore and his order of the fried chicken, didn´t take it well. And that was a huge understatement. But it all started in his summer holiday, so they were sure he wasn´t able to get any books to learn just yet. So they waited, planed.
But he was not dumb, he easily took the knight bus. With a bit of muggle make up, contact lenses and hair straightener nobody even sent a second glance in his direction. Wizards were sure one dumb species. While he was researching he found out about his heritage, about the ancient and most noble house Potter. But instead of questioning any of his friends or so called mentors, he went to the bank. Goblins sure were helpful. If you had money, they would do as you asked. No annoying questions.
It was a very furious and different Harry, who existed Gringotts. They had dared to steal from him, while making him believe he wasn´t even able to buy himself fitting cloth! Harry was rich, filthy rich and because of his unwilling participation of the Triwizard Tournament he was official an adult. He was able to access the Potter vault, not only his trust vault.
Then there were the bindings on his magic, abilities, the memory charms and the glamours!!! He almost destroyed his accountants office, when it came to light, what atrocities Dumbledore had committed.
Ha, like his father James with his Lily´s eyes, my ass. He wasn´t even their child. Oh, no his father was Sirius, while Remus was his mother.
They had the public believe he was Lily´s child to protect him from the werewolf prejudge. Lily´s will was very clear on that subject. In reality he had Sirius black hair, it was straight and reached him to his shoulders. He was slender but not underfed, with high cheekbones and startling sliver eyes. You could almost take him for a female.
Harry liked his new body, he was damn sure he was gay anyway.
After the war they stopped enduring his necessary (not that they would ever acknowledge that) methods and branded him as the next dark lord. He was just to powerful for them to control.
He was a master in defense, nobody could even get near him, and even if he was caught unawares he would just flicked his hand and heal himself in a matter of seconds. Wandless magic came to him like breathing after the bindings on his magic were removed, as well as a awareness for his movements, which rivaled a professional dancer combined with a war veteran, perfect recall, the defense of his mind and not to forget a understanding for magic nobody since Merlin possessed. Well, on top of that was the tiny problem of him being the owner of the Deathly Hollows, not that they knew of that annoying information.
After the fated day, when they killed nearly all his remaining true family...small sweet Teddy, strict Andromeda, brave Neville, Bill, George...
The only people he had left, were lovely Luna and Draco, who turned from the Dark Lord shortly after Harry decided to quit the stunner nonsense. As well as Fleur, Bill´s wife and their small daughter Sophia.
Luna was distraught over Neville´s death and set out to find rare animals, Draco left the country all together and was now selling potions somewhere in France, keeping Fleur company.
When the aurors started hunting him in earnest, issuing a kill oln sight warrant, he changed his identity and vanished. He held contact to only his true family. The goblins were again a very good asset. They had helped him remove the horcrux from his scar as well. Bloody Dumbledore, you have to sacrifice yourself for the greater good bullshit.
Skull was born. He changed his hair color, made up an outlandish personality and tried stunts. That he would be part of the cursed Acrobaleno´s was again Potter luck. Well, life had been a bit boring anyway.
Back to the present.
Skull turned from the mirror and was about to start on a really interesting book about runes. Charmed in a way that a muggle would only see it as a ordinary comic.
He heard a faint whimper. His hearing was exceptional. He was on alert in an instance, his war honed instincts had never faded. Without making any sort of noise he left his room and listened again. If it was any kind of hurt animal he would patch it up. His rare ability of beast speak, allowed him to speak to all animals not only snakes, as Dumbledore tried to set it up.
But no, this was no animal in need of rescue.
A distraught shout from Fon´s room made him disregard the rule to not breach the others privacy. Fon was trashing on his bed, caught in a nightmare. For a moment Skull contemplate just leaving. Fon wouldn´t want him, the lackey, to see him in this vulnerable state. In the end bleeding heart won out, like always. Gently he shook Fon. “Fon, wake up. It is only a dream. Fon.” When Fon lashed out, bleary blinking his eyes open, Skull simply ducked out of the way.
Fon returned to reality with a deep breath. It took him a split second to register Skull on his bedside. Watching him concerned.
Skull´s crushed up eyebrows and overall worried expression took Fon by surprise. His confusion must have been written on his face, because Skull explained right away: “I heard you screaming and was worried something had happened.”
Fon nodded. He was glad Skull didn´t ask silly questions, like are you fine... He was not fine, nor would he ever be. This world was just too cruel. The stuntmen studied him silently, unnervingly so. After a while Skull seemed to come to an conclusion. “Do you want to talk about it? Sometimes it helps.”
He was so serious for once, that Fon was left reeling. Was this Skull, their idiotic stuntman? He knew that Skull could get really protective. But those occasions, when he had to show that side of him, were few and far between.
“You don´t have to, but sometimes it is refreshing to just let the demons out.” “What does a civilian know of demons?”, the sentence was out, before he could stop it. And he regretted it instantly. The shadows visible in Skull´s eyes at his accusation, made him look impossibly old.
This was not the look of a civilian.
What had happened to Skull...it couldn´t be the few people he killed, no this was way deeper. Like he had faced his innermost fear, had won and lost everyone in the process. “I recognize the look in your eyes”, was all he said. The fact that Skull had seen that exact look in the mirror and on the faces of his most trusted day after day in and after the war, was something left unsaid.
For a moment there Fon was sure, if someone could understand him, it would be Skull.
So without contemplating any further he just spilt. He told him how he was never good enough, too weak, too slow... And Skull just listened. Never interrupting. All the while never judging. Silence filled the room. Fon avoided Skulls eyes. He didn´t want to see the scorn, didn´t want to be hold lacking. Deep down he knew it would break him, would leave him picking up the pieces.
Skull startled him out of his destructive thoughts. The stuntman gently took Fon´s face in his hands, made him look him straight in the eyes.
“You are not weak! Damn anyone how would ever think that should go to a mental hospital. He clearly doesn´t have all the teacups in their cupboard. I admire you, your discipline, your kick-ass martial arts, your way to calmly deal with anything life throws at you.” Fon swallowed thickly. Committing Skulls passionate rant to his memory, burning it in his brain. Skull was unaware just how much Fon had needed to hear his few heartfelt words.
“Please never think of you so lowly”, with that last sentence he climbed further on the bed and tucked Fon into a heartwarming hug. So much carved from Fon, who hadn´t felt any positive human touch in so many years.
In that moment Fon let go. He sobbed silently, buried deep in Skulls chest. He did not remember falling asleep. But he definitely recalled feeling completely safe and protected.
Better rested than in years he slowly opened his eyes. A pleasant warmth was pressed to his side. A small smile played on his lips. Skull was securely tucked under Fon´s chin, as close to his chest as possible. The martial artists arm was around Skull´s thin waist, keeping him securely in place. His legs were tangled with Fon´s. The cloud Acrobaleno´s delicate hands grasped Fon´s shirt, as if to make sure he stayed firmly by his side.
In his sleep the smaller man looked so young, innocent, so damn adorable... Fon startled slightly, when did he start thinking of Skull as adorable?
Maybe somewhere between Skull accepting him wholly and him bawling his eyes out. Slight red dusted his cheeks, but he kept observing the small form in his arms. Skull really was short and delicate in stature, more a woman than a man.
Skull wiggled slightly. Fon had to keep himself from reacting, the stuntman´s knees were way to close to a certain delicate area. Skull´s face scrunched up like a sweet kitten and he pulled his nose up. Promptly deciding he did not want to wake up yet and leave the warmth, so he just buried deeper in Fon´s chest. The fact that Skull obviously felt totally safe and at ease with him so close, made his chest puff up proud. Ahh, he really needed to sort there strange new feelings. Especially if the object of his baffling thoughts was right next to him, in his BED! Fuck, okay he needed space.
Luckily Skull bleary blinked up to him.
“Fon?”, his voice was still rough.
Fon´s brain supplied some rather unappropriated pictures of Skull in situations, rather pleasant situations, where his voice would sound like that as well... He scolded himself in his mind, while his eyes never left Skull´s slowly comprehending face. After a few seconds a cute blush creeped up his face, Skull squeaked adorably and determined Fon´s chest was the best place to hide. Fon chuckled and couldn´t suppress a smile. Skull peeked up from Fon´s chest.
“Your smile is beautiful. You should smile more often”, blurted the stuntman out. This did nothing to calm his blush, the next words were again muffled in Fon´s shirt: “Just leave me to die in mortification.” Fon´s grin did not subside. He tightened his arm around Skulls waist. He was so damn precious. Why hadn´t he realized earlier? Skull slowly distracted himself form the embrace, head lowered, still red. “I...I...”, he cleared his voice, looked him straight in the face and declared with his normal loud obnoxious tone: “The great Skull-sama will leave now!”, Fon had never seen someone out of his room so fast.
There was his answer. Skull was hiding. Firmly hiding himself behind masks. Masks so perfected not even the worlds greatest had noticed they were even there. Determined Fon stood up. He would get the little one to shed his distractions, even if only when he was alone with him.
Skull meanwhile was breathing heave, his face buried in his hands, crouching on the floor. He had slipped up! One month before the curse, and now after they had met up again roughly two month...it took him only fucking three month to fuck up... But his flames and magic were reassuring him that they were safe. That he could feel at home with them...that they could heal him!
Ahh! Bloody Potter luck!
His traitorous mind supplied him with how nice it was to wake up in Fon´s arms. How safe and protected, how loved he had felt. Fon´s arm around his waist. Alone he would have never been able to fall asleep again, not after that nightmare. Fon´s presence seemed to be soothing. He hadn´t slept so well in at least a decade.
Damn, his regrets bore less and less weight. Maybe he should let things play out, maybe it was not a bad thing to finally have someone again, someone who knew his real self. Apart from his all but blood family. A small smile played on Skull´s lips. His heart skipped a beat. It really had felt nice in Fon´s arms.
Skull straightened and made his way downstairs. He was hungry. He could tackle his other problems later.
Hours later he was sitting in the garden behind the mansion in his favorite spot. He was sunbathing. Not long and his many friends trotted, flew, and slithered to him. He had befriended nearly every animal in his vicinity. They loved him and he loved them. His beast speak made him able to actually talk to them. They knew him without his masks. It was damn important for him to shed his play for at least an hour a day, or he would freak out. He told them everything. Especially a sweet blue Varied Tit had taken to him. The smart bird was always the first who showed up and the last to go.
“Harry! Harry!” Skull laughed delighted and proceeded to stroke her. “Hello Natalie, how are you?”
“Never mind me, I saw you cuddling with the long haired one. What happened? Details! I want the juicy details!”
He buried my face in my heads, trying to ward off the blush. How the heck did she see me sleeping with Fon? Did she peep through the thin gap of the curtain?
Bloody stalker birds!
Now she would never shut up. Skull was just about to explain, when he felt a presence nearing. He didn´t change his body language, only kept quiet. Quietly murmuring: “Someone is coming, I...give you the juicy details later. But nothing happened! Don´t get all worked up!”
Who knew birds could have such a dirty mind?!
Natalie was a gossip queen on top of her carrier as a top notch stalker. Maybe next time he should think twice, before befriending anyone. What did it say about him, to be surrounded by hitman, assassins... Better not go that way.
Talk about a hitman and he shall appear... “Lackey! What are you doing?”