“Vinda was right- you’re sulking.” Grindelwald practically jumped at the voice. Standing in the doorway to his left was one of the few men Gellert trusted- Dante. His loyal second in command.
“I’m not sulking,” Gellert replied, looking morose for a moment before he could no longer hide his grin. He met his friend halfway in an embrace, clapping him on the back.
“What are you doing here? I thought you were going to be stuck in Asia a while longer?”
Dante smirked, “The Japanese minister was more than willing to negotiate once I shared his bed.”
Grindelwald laughed as Dante strode over his liquor cabinet, pouring himself and Gellert some firewhiskey.
"I'm surprised you came to see me first and not Percy," Gellert noted sipping his drink earning a suggestive look from his friend.
"Oh my friend, I've already been here for several hours." They looked at one another for a moment before laughing, Gellert grinning and mentioning he'd met someone interesting in New York.
As close as Dante and Gellert were, and as free with their sexuality as they were, they weren’t technically in a relationship. They casually fucked every now and then, and they were close friends- as they were with Vinda, but they weren’t dating.
“Hmm, met a young man. A Magizoologist- guess what his name was?”
The younger man sighed, downing his firewhiskey while motioning Gellert to continue with his free hand. Dante was well aware of how much Gellert enjoyed being a drama queen. The German grinned and continued.
Dante choked on his firewhiskey, breathing harshly as he clutched at his throat, now looking directly at his blonde companion.
“Theseus got married?!”
“Nope, he’s Theseus’ little brother. There’s a seven-year difference between them.” The files MACUSA had were extensive to say the least, not to mention diving through Percy’s memories had filled him in a bit about the strange redhead.
The room was silent save for the crackling of a fire before Dante quickly stood and threw the empty glass at the wall.
“Those assholes! Let me guess, he’s another straight edge by the book hypocrite just like Theseus?”
“You did hear what I said, right? He’s a Magizoologist, he’s nothing like you’ve told me about Theseus, but he isn’t much like you either.”
“Tell me everything.”
After his third attempt to convince the ministry to lift their travel ban, Newt was feeling rather depressed about it all.
The ministry never listened to him, they just blamed him for New York because he was a convenient target for him. Since Graves was missing and poor Credence had been murdered.
Walking into his flat, the Magizoologist was so focused on trying to not appear as bad as he felt in front of his creatures. He didn’t want to stress them out, in fact he was so focused he almost didn’t notice the stranger in his kitchen making tea.
The stranger was odd to say the least, he looked a lot like Theseus except less, not put together but less concerned with society’s objections? He was dressed in dark clothes, somewhere between muggle and wizard dress. His hair was long enough to be pulled into a rather messy bun behind him, his wand stuck through it. The rather bent angel of it keyed Newt into the stranger likely having a darker magic leaning. Not that dark wizards ever really bothered Newt- he never really did understand the hate towards them. Light magic could be as deadly as dark.
“I’m sorry- why are you in my flat?”
The man turned to face him, and it was intense to say the least.
It was like looking at himself but older- they even had the same eye color! But his facial structure was much more like Theseus’. Was this a cousin? But that didn’t make any sense. His father didn’t have any siblings and their mother was a muggleborn so the likelihood of her having siblings that had magical children was fairly miniscule.
“Finally- who knew the Ministry would take so long just to tell you no?” The man asked, taking two cups and putting them on the table before taking a seat. Gesturing to the other chair for Newt to do the same.
“The ministry excels at being ineffective to the point of negligence,” Newt replied, not touching the tea. Both Theseus and he had enough enemies that he wouldn’t be surprised if the man was trying to poison him.
His comment made the stranger laugh.
“Gellert was right, you’re nothing like Theseus. Much more like me.”
“So you’re one of his fanatics then, are you here to kill me?”
The notion of killing him made the stranger look utterly disgusted.
“I’m not a fan of fratricide, though Theseus liked tempting me when he was younger.”
Newt starred at the man, his mind going a mile a minute.
When Newt first went to Hogwarts, his parents and Theseus assumed he would be sorted into Ravenclaw. Despite being incredibly socially awkward, he was incredibly studious. He devoured any books given to him and as soon as he started writing he started writing everything down about the creatures he found.
Newt simply had a way of looking at things and noticing more then the average person would. That being said, it wasn’t all the surprising that after their parents died and Newt and Theseus were looking through their things, they found a small painting amongst their father’s things.
Newt had only been able to look at it for a moment before Theseus snatched it out of his hand. It was of a child, initially Newt thought it was of him or Theseus. But his smile was off- it was more of a smirk. Theseus always held his head high with his back ramrod straight, whereas he tended to slouch more. This child looked more like his Niffler when he got away with something particularly troublesome.
Theseus hadn’t even looked at the portrait before he set it on fire.
They never spoke about it, and even when Newt looked through their family tree he couldn’t find anything to explain the child.
Was this stranger in his flat that child?
Judging by his style of dress and the fact that he had to have been old enough to leave before Newt knew about him, Newt guessed he was likely 15-17 when he left. Newt and Theseus had 7 years between them. If Newt had been born to replace the child, and Theseus was between 7 or 8 years of age, so the stranger was probably at least 7 years older than Theseus and 15 years older than him.
“So, what did you do?”
“I remember Mother and Father being incredibly lenient when it came to discipline, so what did you do to make them kick you out?”
The man laughed, not looking offended in the slightest.
“Oh Newt, they didn’t kick me out- I left.”
That- that didn’t make any sense. Desmond and Thalia Scamander were very kind people, they’d encouraged Newt’s interest in magizoology, had attended every single dueling competition Theseus took part in. They had taught Theseus and Newt the importance of tolerance, to being open minded about all kinds of magic.
So, if this man- his brother- had left it would have been due to intolerance- oh. He worked with Grindelwald. He was one of his fanatics. Yes, he could see how that would cause tensions with their parents.
“D-did you know a-about me or- or?”
The man’s hand twitched, making Newt momentarily worried his brother would break the teacup.
“Not until Gellert told me a few days ago, and he did ask me to pass on his apologies for that business in New York. As a show of good will, he gave me this to give to you-“
Dante and Gellert had talked at length about this. The Dark Lord was very much interested in courting Newt. Since Dante was now technically the head of the Scamander family, he’d given Gellert permission easily. Gellert was very much serious in this endeavor- seeing Newt much more than a quick shag. More importantly, since Newt didn’t seem to be very interested in the fight for the Greater Good, having him safely kept in Nurmengard or just out of the fight in general would ensure he wouldn’t get caught in the crossfire. Though, there would be questions on why their leader’s bride didn’t fight, why he didn’t make appearances at their rallies. That could cause some political issues there, but they would cross that bridge when they got to it. The primary goal now, aside from the obvious, was to make sure Newt stayed out of the fight.
“He found it while meeting with a small group looking to join him, of course when he realized what it was, Gellert terminated their…deals.” Dante explained as he handed over the dove grey egg. It was an Antipodean Opaleye, held in a stasis charm to keep it both warm but unable to hatch until it was received by Newt who could care for it.
His baby brother accepted the egg like it was made of pure gold- actually since he regularly handled Occamy eggs he probably treated it like, well Dante couldn’t say what would be worth that much to someone like Newt.
Newt cradled the egg like it was his baby, looking at it in wonder.
“He saved this for me?” The Magizoologist muttered, his focus still on the egg.
“That’s right, little one.” Seeing that Newt’s focused was now entirely going to be on the egg Dante moved to leave. Pressing a kiss to his little brother’s curls before turning to leave-
“Wait- you didn’t say your name?”
Dante smirked, “Ask Theseus.”
Gellert met Dante not long after both of their lives were ruined. Dante had just left home and Gellert had been forced out of Godric’s Hallow.
Gellert had been drowning his sorrows in a bottle of Firewhiskey in a pub somewhere in Wales when a redheaded man slipped inside the establishment. For a split second, Gellert thought it was Albus returning to him, but he knew just as quickly it wasn’t.
This man wasn’t as lithe as Albus, nor was his hair as long. The man’s bright hazel eyes looked practically gold as they met Gellert’s own mix-matched ones.
The man smirked at him and Gellert was just drunk enough to hope fucking a stranger would make him forget Albus, at least temporarily.
In the end, they both had ended up sodding drunk passed out in Gellert’s room. And that was that, Dante helped fill the hole in Gellert left by Albus and Gellert had the knowledge of dart arts that Dante craved.
What pulled them together, or at least helped, was that Dante wasn’t moved by Gellert’s manipulations. It forced Gellert into viewing Dante as a person and not as a pawn. Not like he saw most people. The only thing that really kept the two from having a romantic relationship was it just wasn’t there. They had discussed it, but both agreed, an occasional fuck every now and then but nothing more.
Dante was seen by others as Gellert Grindelwald’s loyal second in command, with Vinda Rosier as a close third. But their relationship was much more equal then that.
They really were good friends.
Not long after his eldest brother left, Newt placed his egg into a charmed nest to keep warm- loath to leave it then headed over to his brother’s place. Easily disapparating within his wards and allowed through the ones at Theseus and Leta’s.
His future sister-in-law was the first to come to the door to greet him, a surprised look on her face.
“Newt-? Is everything okay?”
“H-hi Leta, sorry to come barging in- is my brother home?”
“Newt?” A third voice echoed down the hall, his brother quickly following it.
Theseus Scamander stood frozen for a moment, clearly surprised before opening his arms for Newt. When Newt didn’t say anything, the older brother pulled the Magizoologist into a tight embrace, followed by a shorter one by Leta.
“If we knew you were coming we would have prepared a better meal-“Before Theseus could go on in his ramblings, Newt interrupted before his chance was gone.
“Do we have another brother?” Theseus immediately shut up, looking both disgusted and nervous. Judging by the way Leta was looking between them, Newt suspected she knew.
Of course she did.
Leta looked between the only two people she considered family with a slight shiver of trepidation.
Newt rarely got his angry, it was even more rare for Newt to be angry outside of an animal-based reason.
Theseus met her gaze before focusing on Newt again, one hand on Newt’s back as he guided him deeper into the house.
“We’ve got a lot to talk about” she heard Theseus murmur, leaving Leta in the doorway. She’d ask Trinny to make them some tea, and maybe spike Newt’s with a calming potion.
An angry Newt was not far off from an angry dragon.
She followed after the two brothers once a moment had passed and she’d asked for the tea to be made.
The mocha-skinned woman took her time in going to Theseus’ study. Leta remembered how upset Theseus was when he told her about Dante. It wasn’t long after she’d told him about Corvus and her guilt for that.
Dante, Theseus told her, was interested in dark magic from the very beginning. Studying dark arts and blood magic, arguing with their parents on blood purity superiority. Theseus admitted he’d been fairly young when Dante left and couldn’t remember a lot of it.
Judging by Newt’s demeanor and how long Theseus had kept this secret, she did not envy her fiancé at the moment.
Newt hated his brother’s study. Every time he came in here, some part of him expected to be reprimanded. After their parents’ sudden death, Theseus had taken custody of Newt. More often than not, Newt found himself getting in trouble during the summer months or Christmas break. Then, after being expelled, it was like every day his brother was summoning him to his study- a displeased look on his face and a harsh word.
Now though, it was reversed. Newt had the displeased look and Theseus knew he’d been the one to make a blunder this time.
Instead of sitting at his desk, Theseus sat next to him on the red couch. Angling his body towards Newt, his hands clasped in front of him- his face tight.
The Magizoologist was silent as he waited for Theseus to start, not entirely sure how he felt about his brother at the moment.
“I wanted to tell you, little one- believe me I did but Mum and Dad made me swear never to tell you.” The Auror held out his hand to Newt, a flick of his wand revealing the curled scars of an unbreakable vow- now made moot as Newt knew about the eldest child of Alfred and Penelope Scamander.
That changed things, if Newt was being honest. He felt less angry if Theseus literally hadn’t been able to tell him.
“I don’t understand though, why couldn’t I know?”
Theseus bit his lip, eyeing his brother for a moment before leaning back and sighing. He ran a hand through his hair before his shoulders dropped and he continued.
“To be honest, I don’t remember much of it. I was only 8 or so when he ran away. Mum never spoke of him again and Dad said never to bring him up. Newt- how did you even find out about him?”
“He visited my flat.”
In less than a heartbeat, Theseus had switched into his mother-hen mode, expecting every bit of him to make sure he wasn’t injured or something.
Whilst suffering through this, Newt asked what their brother’s name was.
Theseus stopped, a bit of surprise on his face.
“He told me to ask you.”
For the first time, Newt saw his brother as less of an immovable mountain and a mortal man. Someone just as capable of exhaustion and fear- someone who couldn’t always protect him.
Theseus looked like him.
“Dante,” Theseus murmured “Dante Caelus Scamander.”
Before Newt could comment on this, or even think of something to say, both of them jumped to their feet at the shattering sound from downstairs.
Something had shattered followed by a cut-off shout.
The Auror and the Magizoologist moved so quickly they practically disapparated downstairs to the source of the sound.
There, in the kitchen, stood the same man Newt had met before. In his arms was an unconscious Leta who was in the process of putting down in a chair.
“Ah, this is yours right little one?” Newt felt some kind of ice flow through his veins. The ever-familiar nickname being used for Theseus just felt wrong.
Theseus said nothing, side stepping them both his wand still out as he went to his fiancé’s side. Checking to make sure she was fine.
Newt’s eyes never left Dante, unsure if it was because he feared the other would harm Theseus or just sure curiosity.
“And good on you, little Salamander- I figured you’d go to Theseus and I’d get both of you in one go.”
Now standing in front of Leta, Theseus’ eyes narrowed at Dante.
“What do you mean?”
“Well, for one thing it was high time for all three of us to be together. For another, as head of the Scamander family- I need to make sure my darling baby brother has someone to take care of him.”
The ice Newt felt in his veins increased exponentially, as if he’d just taken a swan dive into the artic habitat of his enclosures.
Newt was well aware of what was expected of him as the youngest son of a prominent family. He was supposed to be married off for connections- except, Theseus had promised him it would never happen.
In the moment before Newt or Theseus could say something, an arm wrapped around Newt’s waist pulling him flush against an unfamiliar chest.
A familiar accented voice whispered in the youngest Scamander’s ear, “Hello mein kleiner Verlobter.”