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The Knights, The Newt, and The Rose

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How long had he been there?

Days? Weeks? Months? Years? Mercy Lewis, he prayed it wasn’t years. How could he have survived years in this prison of darkness?

At least he felt numb. That everything felt numb. The lack of feeling had taken place of the pain he had been in before and now he welcomed it. It was better than sitting there, twitching from the curses, hearing that man's laugh among his screams. Better than listening to ghosts of his siblings voices begging him to wake up for another round of torture, better than his parents saying that they had raised him to be stronger. Numbness was a welcomed interruption to that. But then he heard footsteps and those weary muscles numbed to anything tensed in panic.

He was back…He was…

Voices washed over him, disorienting and chaotic and he tried to adjust as he caught snippets of the conversation.

“Director Graves!!!”

“Mercy Lewis…

“His leg...his arm...look at-!”

“We...him!!”

“Is he alive?!”

Goldstein?

Wearily, Percival opened his eyes and the blurry images danced around him. More than one. Did that mean...

"Mr. Graves! You're safe, please calm down." A voice begged, resting a hand on his shoulder, and he remembered that voice. Linda...Howard. A new auror, starting out only weeks before he had been captured.

“He’s alive, but he’s bad off. We need to get him to the healers!” Another voice called out over Howard's voice, and he couldn't help but feel overwhelming relief. A raspy sound that most certainly wasn’t a whimper escaped his throat as hands, gingerly as possible, lifted him and then placed him onto what he realized slowly was a stretcher. Then the dark world was suddenly bright and he bit back the cry, closing his eyes.

When he did manage to open his eyes again, in his blurry vision and in the distance he saw a rich blue shade and a person standing a little ways away. Even from here, he couldn't help but relax at the new face. Still, he vaguely wondered who would be wearing such a coat, before unconsciousness took over again, and he welcomed sweet numbing darkness.


“Are we sure that that thing is well...safe?”

Newt glanced back at the American aurors with a frown, glancing back at the large cat-like creature roaming around the room, the long tail flicking side to side as it sniffed. He watched as she paused, the frill around her neck quivering for a moment before moving to another spot in the room, a rumbling coming from her chest.

“Sally is perfectly safe.”

“It’s a Sawaa. Named Sally?”

“Sally is a lovely name.” Newt replied evenly and the auror seemed to be about to argue, but a look from Tina quieted him. Sally continued forward, sniffing around the crevices of Percival Graves house.

“...why would Grindelwald keep Director Graves here? In his own house?”

“Why wouldn’t he? It’d be a controlled habitat only he could enter.” Newt replied watching Sally.

“This is ridiculous.” One of them muttered and though the others glared, Newt ignored them watching as Sally continued snuffling around. Suddenly the frilled neck unfolded, vibrating violently as she pawed at a closed door.

“Your creature’s broken Mr. Scamander. That’s just a closet.”

Tina ignored her colleague, fully trusting Newt’s creature. With all that they had done in the past few days, she couldn’t not trust them. She walked forward, hesitating only for a moment as she moved past Sally, who rumbled deeply in her throat, pawing at the door again as though to say “I found him. He’s here.” She glided her hand over the door, and felt a familiar magical surge.

“Maybe Grindelwald used an extension charm?” She questioned, glancing back at the other aurors who still looked unconvinced, but nodded regardless.

“Newt, maybe you should stay back.” She said softly and he nodded quickly, moving back along with Sally as the aurors advanced. They opened the closet, and uttered a few spells. Even from where Newt stood, he could see the visage of the inner closet melted away to reveal a dark tunnel and could feel the nauseating magic surrounding the hall.

“Well I’ll be damned.”

The aurors slowly moved into the hall as Tina stood with Newt.

“So...a Sawaa?”

“Oh yes, they’re located in Africa!” Newt exclaimed, almost excitedly. “I suppose they’re like lions, they certainly behave like them and are probably related to nundu's in some fashion, though from what I can tell she doesn't have the illness factor of a nundu but I’ve discovered that they have rather extraordinary tracking abilities. Found her around the same time I saved Frank. She was bad off, and must have gotten separated or was thrown out of her pride...couldn’t just leave her.”

“The fact that you’ve managed to get a wild creature to trust you…” Tina remarked as she watched Sally nuzzle Newt’s thigh, purring with pride as he scratched around her frills.

“Oh it wasn’t so difficult with her, she’s a rather sweet-”

“We found him!!”

“Is he alive?!” Tina called out, leaving Newt standing there with Sally, the former of the two opening his case, patting Sally lightly on her side as she climbed back in and gingerly he closed it.

“He’s alive, but he’s bad off. We need to get him to the healers!”

Newt looked up to watch as the group of aurors hurried past him, carrying a form on a stretcher, looking smaller than the figure that Grindelwald had impersonated. Crusted blood from lacerations and bruises that Newt could see covered his form, an unkempt beard growing on his jawline, and his right arm and leg seemed to be strangely absent, but he couldn’t be sure...as they lay under the sheet placed on him. It was a far cry from the man that Grindelwald had portrayed, and even a farther one that the aurors and Tina had told him about.

Tina was a sickly pale color as she walked towards him, and they looked like they were all holding back tears.

They had found the real Percival Graves...but…had they been too late?

Newt looked away, feeling as though he was intruding in something private, and stared out a window looking at New York’s ever changing landscape. He only glanced back when he felt as though he was being watched and noticed Percival Graves eyes opened just a bit and staring at him.

He didn’t understand why his throat seemed to close up or his heart skipped a beat. Or why he felt so alone when Percival Graves was carted away to St. Agatha’s Medical Center for Magical Maladies and Injuries.

The next day, he booked a ticket back to England and that weekend he left New York, promising to visit after his book was published.

It was just a matter of time, he concluded.

Just a matter of time

Chapter Text

Apparently the when hadn’t been too long after, Newt mused as he sat on the ship again, staring out towards the sea for a moment, before turning to look as gasps of other passengers echoed on deck. Well New York’s landscape had changed quite a lot in a year, Newt thought almost amused as he watched the city grow closer and closer from the boat. More skyscrapers rose into the sky and the smell rose quickly, mingling with the nauseating smell from the docks. Still, Newt actually welcomed it, after being on a boat for nearly 2 weeks.

But, he couldn’t help but feel a rush of unease as he saw Lady Liberty, remembering the events that took place there a year before, resulting in him checking his suitcase again, thankfully the seals were still placed there.

He really, really didn’t need a repeat of last year, and it was why he had been hesitant to return, but he had promised Tina and Queenie a visit.

And a promise, was a promise.

Getting through customs was pretty similar from last time, though the man seemed to give him a cursory glance before peering at his case in an eerie deja-vu. Sighing, he exited the docks, looking around.
He didn’t have to look for long.

“Newt!”

He grunted as he suddenly had an armful of Queenie, whose laughter tinkled in the street.

“Hi, Queenie,” he said, voice muffled by her hair.

She smiled brightly as she moved away.

“Oh look at you! You must have been somewhere sunny, you’ve gotten more freckles than when I last saw you!”

Newt flushed slightly. She had changed slightly as well, he thought as he observed her. Her hair had lengthened slightly and she wore a light pink dress that suited her, but she was still the same beautiful Queenie, and she giggled at that, twirling around.

“Thank you for noticing, Newt!”

“Please don’t read my mind.” He commented weakly, and she only laughed softly to which he smiled at.

There was an exasperated sigh and the familiar dark haired witch smiled as she walked over to him.

“Nice to see your trip arrived on schedule.”

“Hi, Tina.” He ducked his head shyly, before Tina pulled him into a hug, less forceful than that of her sister, but still welcomed.

“And here we thought we’d only hear from you in sporadic letters.” She teased, and she listened to the stuttering remark and could envision the reddening in his cheeks. She chuckled. “Welcome back to New York, Newt.” she said as she released him and he smiled before glancing over as a throat cleared and brightened when he saw Jacob standing there.

“Jacob.” Newt laughed. “How are you?”

“Just fine.” Jacob took his hand and shook it warmly.

“And the memories?” Newt asked which Jacob returned with a grin.

“Mostly there. Sometimes it’s a bit patchy and blurry, but I remember enough. At least enough that’s important.”

His gaze strayed towards where Queenie was, the woman shifting slightly as though sensing him and smiled, looking over at him with a brilliant smile.

“Come on! You must be starving from your trip! And we need to show you Jacob’s bakery!!” Queenie said brightly, which Jacob beamed as well, with pride.

“You didn’t need to come and pick me up…” Newt muttered, blushing and Tina snorted, patting his arm.

“The last time you came into New York alone, you ran into Jacob and unleashed some creatures into the city…” She teased and Newt sighed in exasperation before nodding and watched as the couple began to walk down the street. Newt smiled and began to move to follow the pair, before being stopped by Tina.

“Newt…” she began, looking at Newt worriedly, “how’s…you know...”

Newt smiled slightly

“Credence is fine. I left him back in England when I came back so he’s adjusting to my brother and my family, but is happy.” Newt replied gently and Tina visibly relaxed. It had been a surprise when he had opened his case after returning to England and finding a younger Credence curled up with Dougal, but a welcomed one. It hadn’t taken long for his brother and his parents, mainly his mother, to become enamored by the little boy. In Newt’s opinion, it was a way for Credence to actually learn from a family that cared for him and wasn’t absolutely horrid.

“He’s not in any danger?”

“I’d like to see any wizard or witch try to go after him. Theseus and my parents are protective. Theseus more than others.”

“You sound like you would know this first hand.”

“They ah...may have gotten into arguments on my behalf. Multiple times. Theseus especially.”

Tina chuckled softly.

“Sounds like something that an older sibling would do.”

Newt chuckled softly, before looking at her concerned.

“You look tired.”

“I’m on a bit of a stressful case.”

“Case?”

“Well-”

“Come on you slow pokes!” Queenie called out before Tina could even reply, the pair glancing up to see the blonde witch standing ways away.

“Let’s go,” Tina said with a chuckle, “Queenie’s been excited all day waiting for you.”

Newt nodded, but still looked at Tina in concern. She looked exhausted, and it was clear that this case was affecting her more than she was letting on. However before he could push, Queenie hurried over to him, her face glowing.

“You need to tell us how you’ve been! Especially with your book! It’s the bee’s knees around here!”

And Newt blushed.


Brick met his shoulders painfully as he collided with the wall, a cry escaping his lips as he slid down, struggling to stand and move, his head pounding as he barely dodged another spell, and swung his wand up.

“Pro-”

“Razrushat'ya!”

He felt the burning sensation as he tumbled forward, felt his right leg give, felt the burning sensation of his arm. It only took a few minutes to realize it had because there was nothing left there. Unbalanced, he tumbled forward, hearing his wand clattering to the ground and he struggled to get up, trying to heal his leg and arm, trying to slow the bleeding. Slow, confident footsteps echoed in the alleyway towards him.

“You look a little pale, Director.” Grindelwald said, almost mockingly, “and it appears you’ve dropped your wand. Let me go collect it.”

Percival barely heard him as he pushed his concentration back to stopping himself from bleeding out. Soon a pair of expensive looking shoes came into his line of sight and he looked up, glaring, into different colored eyes, the man smirking.

“Do svidaniya, Mr. Graves. You have been most helpful. Now then...you’ll be aiding me during my little excursion in the United States.”

“Over my dead body.”

“Appealing as that is, I’m afraid you’ll have to help me a bit more now.”

Grindelwald’s wand lit up, and Percival’s scream filled the air.

Percival awoke with a gasp, sitting up in bed. His throat ached and he looked around, only to find that he was in his bedroom, safe. No Grindelwald in sight.

Frustrated, he rubbed his face hard.

That memory again.

Out of all the memories of his capture and imprisonment that remained as the most prominent one to invade his sleep. It made sense, he had been told. He hadn’t been tortured and left barely alive...and that point, that point was a turning moment in his life, for better or worse he had been told by a healer.

He didn’t know how it could even be considered for better.

Sighing he rotated in his bed, looking at the prosthetic leg and arm that were leaning against the side of the bed briefly in disdain.

Both had been made with ebony and aspen wand wood which made it very durable in duels and apparition with a Wampus cat hair core. Runes were etched into them to allow the capability and movement to fight if he needed it. Strong and flexible and he was slowly getting the hang of it to the point where, other than a slight limp and a slight jarring movement, it wasn’t all that noticeable.

Only those who had found him and those who had seen him during the recovery knew.

He didn’t give off an ounce of weakness. He couldn’t.

He had already failed once.

He wasn’t going to fail again.

One-handedly he pulled the prosthetic leg and arm on and slowly stood, adjusting his weight accordingly, before walking out of his bedroom, refusing to sleep again and pulled out the familiar file, worn from reading and rereading.

There was much work to be done.


“Glad to see you made it to the US without any trouble.”

Newt looked at the communication mirror in exasperation.

“You sound like you have so little faith in me.” Newt teased his older brother, settling in the chair as he watched Theseus roll his eyes, “in any case how’s Credence?”

“Credence is fine, you worrier. Misses you and your creatures, but just fine. Mum’s coddling him and all that, takes him out to see the hippogriffs.”

“Good...that’s good.”

“Alright, spill, what’s bothering you?”

“What makes you think something is bothering me?” Newt asked and Theseus’s face gave him an exasperated look.

“I’m your older brother for one and I happen to be not blind or deaf, contrary to what Mum thinks.”

Newt sighed, pushing back his hair. Maybe it’d be a good idea to talk to Theseus. “Tina seems to be on a case...it’s worrying how tired she looks. That’s all.”

“Case?”

“Mhm. She and Director Graves are apparently working on it. I think she’s worried about it, but she wouldn’t give much more information about that to me.”

“Newt, don’t get involved alright?”

“I’m not planning on getting involved. I had enough drama here the last time, so I intend to keep a low profile.”

“You always say that, but remember the last time you promised to keep a ‘low profile’ you nearly managed to be murdered, released several creatures into New York, and nearly revealed the wizarding world to the muggles of New York, even if it was beneficial since your revealed a dark wizard impersonating another.”

Newt rolled his eyes but his expression softened at the look his brother was giving him. “You don’t have to worry about me, ‘Seus. I’ll be fine. Don't worry."

“You always say that and then you wind up bleeding.” Theseus replied, running a hand through his hair. “Just be careful for my sake, Newt. Last thing I need is to hear that you were nearly sent to the Death Room again.”

“Technically speaking, that was Grindelwald trying to get rid of any witnesses, and the Swooping Evil did perfectly fine in-”

“Dark wizard or no, you shaved off a good ten years of my lifespan when I found out that you had nearly died.” Theseus interrupted with an exasperated chuckle and then gestured over his shoulder. “Credence likes you better anyways. So no dying just yet.”

“I won’t. Promise.”

“Alright. Stay safe little brother.”

“I am taller than you, remember?”

“You’ll still be little to me.”

Newt smiled and shook his head before bidding his brother goodbye, feeling a bit downhearted. He had hoped to talk to Credence and make sure everything was alright, but if he was having fun and was comfortable, why would he disrupt that time.

“Everything alright in England?”

Newt looked up and offered a smile, setting the communication mirror down.

“Oh yes. Credence is meeting my mother’s hippogriffs and apparently enjoying his time with them.”

“That’s good.”

“So, enjoying being an auror again?”

“Oh yes!!” Tina replied as she went to help Newt settle in the guest room of the flat, Queenie having decided to walk Jacob back to his place before she would apparate back. “It’s nice to get back into the energy of the city. The other aurors are happy to see me reinstated too....Did I tell you that Grindelwald had already infiltrated the department when he demoted me?”

“Truly?”

“Mhm. That’s why he didn’t make any attempt to fight the demotion. Don’t get me wrong, Mr. Graves informed me I would have had some type of punishment for what happened with the Second Salemers, but it wouldn’t have been as severe as a demotion. I think Mr. Graves felt bad about that.”

“How badly did Grindelwald make a muck of the department?”

“He moved people who would have known his actual ideals or questioned his decisions and placed rookies there that wouldn’t notice or weren’t qualified. I apparently was one of those, but unlike the others actually gave a reason for my dismissal. Mr. Graves had a whole lot of work to do to fix everything.”

“How is he? The real Graves?”

“He’s...better…” she said after a few moments, clearly keeping something quiet, “obviously he wasn’t happy that no one noticed that he had been replaced...but he’s better.” He would believe it if it didn’t sound like she wasn’t saying that to reassure herself as well.

“Are you worried?”

“He’s my boss, Newt.”

“That’s not what I asked. You said earlier you and Mr. Graves are on a case together…”

“Newt,” Tina interrupted, a brow rising, “Queenie will kill you and then me if you get involved.”

“I don’t intend on getting involved, I’m more curious than anything. You look like you haven’t been sleeping, and usually that type of stress isn’t well...healthy. And if you’re worried...”
Tina was silent and sighed.

“We’ve been having an influx of children vanishing. Magical and no-maj. At first it was one or two no-maj families, so we thought...their problem, but we’d monitor it. But then we found out there was magical residue left at the scene, and then when Thatcher, a new rookie, noticed that they had been placed in the list to observe for possible magical abilities, Mr. Graves and I were assigned to investigate. It didn’t get really worrying, but children from magical families began to vanish...it has everyone on edge.”

“I can imagine.” Newt replied with a frown. “How many have gone missing?”

“Five now.”

“And you think there’s a connection between all the cases? Perhaps their families know one another?”

“If they did, the parents didn’t seem to really know or care for each other other than in passing.”

“What do you mean?”

Tina seemed to contemplate for a moment before she bit her lower lip and shook her head. “No...enough of that. You’re here and really, I shouldn’t even talk about the case with you. You’ll just wind up in trouble.”

“I told you...I don’t go looking for trouble.”

“I know...and that’s what worries me.” She said lightly, tossing a pillow at him and he snorted.


Percival Graves was midway through another report when his office door opened and closed and something settling on his desk.

“Here you go. Roast beef on rye, and I got you a pickle too. Your favorite.”

Percival glanced up, staring at his younger brother who crossed his arms with smirk. Tristan Graves gave his older brother a boyish grin, charming as ever, though Percival merely rolled his eyes.

“Thanks for the concern, but I’m not hungry.”

“You’re going to have to eat sometime Perce. You’re still human...well 80% percent, but human.” Tristan teased and the glare was now directed at him

“Tristan.”

“You want me to go get Elaine so she can badger you into eating?” Tristan interrupted. “You think I’m the annoying younger sibling, but you haven’t seen her angry yet.”

“That’s because I’m her favorite brother.” Percival responded, but relented and snatched the bag as Tristan rolled his eyes, plopping down in the chair across from his.

“Yeah, yeah. Still think it’s because you spoiled her when she was a baby.”

“You could have done the same thing.”

“I was 10!”

“And I was 15. What’s your point?”

“...You are horrible, you know that?” Tristan replied and Percival snorted into his sandwich, taking a bite. They were silent for a few moments. “How are you? Actually?” Tristan asked lightly, though his eyes betrayed concerned and Percival sighed. He could hide from his coworkers, but not his brother. “Elaine and I haven’t really heard from you lately.”

“I’m busy with a case, but I’m fine.” Percival replied and watched as Tristan opened his mouth to argue, but seemed to think better of it and sighed. “Honest.”

“Are you sleeping?”

Silence answered and Tristan sighed.

“The offer still stands, you know.”

“As lovely as living with my baby brother is, I’ll have to politely decline.” Percival replied dryly. Besides, he didn’t need to scare his sister-in-law or his niece and nephews with his screams from his nightmares.

“Don’t be a stranger around my place Perce, the kids don’t mind seeing their ‘Uncle P’. It’d probably make them extremely happy, actually.”

“I figured.”

“You know what I mean Perce…” Tristan swallowed and then looked at Percival worried, “if this is about what happened, I-”

“No it’s not. What happened wasn’t your fault.”

“Doesn’t make us any less sorry.” Tristan responded, a hardness in his eyes that echoed pain.

“...I know.”

“Sebille is still thinking about moving back here. She doesn’t want-”

“And I’ll tell each time she brings it up, that Chicago is where her family is...I wouldn’t want to uproot them all for me.”

“You’re a very self-sacrificing man you know that?” Tristan remarked with a sigh.

“I know. One of my charms.” Percival replied and Tristan snorted.

“You? Charming? That’ll be the day hell freezes and pigs start flying.” Tristan remarked pleasantly, before standing up. “Come on. Let’s go.”

“I said I was busy.”

“The paperwork isn’t going to explode if you go on a walk, Percival. Trust me, I’ve prayed for that. And Elaine did say-”

“Alright, alright.” He gruffly said, standing and walking towards his brother, glaring. “You using that trick twice in a row...Which one of them is ordering you around?”

“Would you believe if it was both?”

Percival rolled his eyes, but chose not to comment as the two exited his office. He could feel it nearly instantly; the looks of pity, guilt and very faintly suspicion flooding the air. Glancing back at Tristan, he put a hand on his younger brother’s arm.

“Ignore them.”

“Perce, you can’t seriously-”

“Tris. Drop it.”

Tristan glared at his brother before following him, still glancing back, following his brother slowly, forcing out idle conversation, about a recent book that the kids were enthralled in, to calm down as they headed towards Central Park.

It was quiet for about five whole minutes when they had reached the park. Then they saw a young woman, rushing further towards the trees. A familiar young woman, Percival quickly realized.

“Goldstein!” Percival called out and the said woman squeaked and spun around.

“Sir!”

“What are you doing?”

“Um...well...O’Reily and I were getting lunch, but well...we found something and are trying to keep it hidden.”

“...It?” Percival asked and Tina gulped

“A creature. We’re not sure where it came from...but it looks like it’s been hidden for a few weeks, and well...”

He didn’t waste any time.

“Tristan, go back to the Woolworth Building.”

“But Per-”

“Now, Tristan!” Percival ordered, following Tina quickly, leaving his younger brother standing there. Following Tina through an area of trees and could hear Jackson O’Reily cursing under his breath.

“Afternoon sir.” O’Reily remarked as Percival glanced at the angrily squawking creature, large wings flapping angrily in warning. “Miracles do happen since no ones seen the beast.”

“Yet. We’ll have to ensure that it doesn’t happen.” Percival remarked, his wand still aimed at the beast as it paced back and forth. Tina glanced at him.

“Sir, I don’t think we need to…”

“Wait! Don’t kill him!!”

The three aurors spun around and Percival noted that Tina’s wand immediately dropped in confusion.

“Newt?”

Newt. Wait...Newt Scamander?

The man who managed to figure out Grindelwald was acting as him and aided in finding him?

However he had envisioned the magizoologist, it didn’t quite match up to who came running to the group surrounding the creature, an expression of fury on his face. He had envisioned Newton Scamander matching more of his brother’s looks; about his height albeit a smidge taller, bulkier, shorter hair with bright green eyes. The man was to them was tall, lanky, a mop of reddish-brown curls covering his brow and blue-green eyes alight in resolve.

“You’re not doing the proper etiquette.” The British Magizoologist panted out as he reached them, practically tossing a suitcase at Tina, who caught it easily, as though she had done it before.

“Proper etiquette? It’s a beast!”

“It’s a very proud, very intelligent creature, and I’ve lived with these particular ones for the majority of my life!” Scamander snapped at O’Reily, before looking at Percival almost begging. “At least let me try.”
Percival stared at the man, wondering what the hell he could do...but finally the impulse he hadn’t given into in years won and he looked at the British wizard.

“You have five minutes.”


He was so thankful he had gone down to Central Park to have lunch.

Tina hadn’t noticed him when she had run by, apparently trying to keep up with another auror. It had only taken a glimpse of the wingspan to know what it was. Though why a hippogriff was even in Central Park was beyond him. But he also knew that the American government wouldn’t care as long as it was to get rid of it.

So he ran as fast as he could, watching the sky for any sign of the hippogriff, before hearing noises in the trees and feeling familiar magic. And there was the hippogriff backed into a wall of bushes and trees with three aurors surrounding it. He recognized two.

Tina and Percival Graves, though the former was more of a welcome sight, he didn’t know if Graves was as welcome as the former.

The last time he had met Graves, he had been half-delirious from fever and infection from his wounds. And he didn’t know how the real Percival Graves acted. Even though, looking at him, he was very different than what Grindelwald had impersonated him. The man that Grindelwald had portrayed had been prim and polished; sharply dressed that Newt couldn’t connect him as an auror, but had been convinced that it was just because he was used to Theseus, who wasn’t afraid to dive halfway into a dumpster to find a clue. The real Graves, this Graves was different. This Graves had slightly longer hair, not as meticulously greased back as Grindelwald had done, and was sporting a neatly trimmed beard. Still, Newt had never seen someone wield authority and capability so effortlessly. It was a long shot.

And there was no guarantee that Graves would even-

“You have five minutes.”

Newt blinked in surprise, stunned for a moment, but decided to not look a gift-horse in the mouth, turned back around to the hippogriff and slowly walked forward, entirely straight-backed for once, to meet the creature.
The hippogriff eyed him warily, wings flapping slightly in warning, but slowed as Newt, his eyes never leaving the hippogriff’s, slowly bowed. They were still for a moment, before finally the hippogriff inclined its own head, bowing in return. “There we go...easy does it. It must be immensely jarring right now.” Newt cooed softly as he approached the creature slowly, never breaking eye contact with him. Then gently, he pressed a hand on the beak of the avian beast, and though he flinched for a moment, soon after the hippogriff relaxed.

“Well I be tarred and feathered.”

“That’s a strange saying.” Newt murmured, glancing behind him as Tina sighed, almost in exasperation.

“Ignore Will. He’s horrible at those.”

“How did you manage to calm it down?”

“He. It’s a he. And they’re easy enough to get along with as long as you know the rules of etiquette. It’s really a matter of-”

“Interesting as this is, how did Central Park manage to gain a hippogriff as a resident in the first place?”

Newt jumped slightly, looking over his shoulder to see Percival Graves standing there, a look of annoyance on his face. Tina looked at Newt, worried.

“Newt, please don’t tell me-”

“He’s not. I promise.” Newt replied quickly, eyes flicking around before back at the hippogriff. “And here is not exactly in any hippogriff herd migration patterns that I’m aware of. So where did you come from…” Newt muttered, running a hand over the creature’s beak, the creature responding with a snort and a familiar chirping sound. He kept gentle strokes on the hippogriffs beak, beginning to make an assessment of the creature.
Underweight, so clearly it hadn’t been near a main food source in quite some time. Light scarring on it’s hind quarters sent a cold chill down his spine. “Not anywhere nice, I can assume.”

A light chirp again and Newt smiled slightly.

“I bet you’ll want to be someplace safe.” Newt murmured, and he didn’t need to hear her to sense that Tina was slowly opening the case, setting it onto ground. “If you would be so kind as to go inside, I’ll be down shortly to make sure you’re comfortable.”

He regarded the magizoologist for a few moments, before walking over to and then, just as quickly, disappeared into his suitcase. Newt exhaled the breath he hadn’t realized he had been holding, before closing the case and then looking at Tina.

“Honestly, not even in the city for a week…” she muttered under her breath and he couldn’t help the shy smile.

“Mr. Scamander.”

The pair looked over at Graves, who for a brief moment, seemed impressed, before the expression glided away.

“We’ll need you to come with us to the Department.”

“But I haven’t done anything.” Newt muttered and Tina looked at Graves worriedly.

“Sir...”

“Now, Goldstein. He needs to be questioned.”

“But I already told you that I didn’t think it was a creature…” Tina remarked and Newt looked at her sharply.

“Is this about your investigation?” He asked lowly and Graves looked at him for a moment before back at Tina and turning around.

“Come along Mr. Scamander. We have much to talk about.”

Chapter Text

It would never cease to amaze him he decided, as Newt entered the Woolworth Building at how different the MACUSA headquarters was in comparison to the Ministry of Magic. There, old magic flowed through the walls, barely any sunlight came down from above, an enormous amount of people bustling in and out. Here, the only similarity was the number of people. The building was well lit, blinding even and the structure so muggle that it would throw him off that it was a magic community if he didn’t know any better.

“Newt! Come on!”

He turned and then hurried after Tina and Percival as waited for him near the lift.

“Sorry! Sorry.” He apologized, clutching his case to him before standing next to Tina. He glanced at Graves once, but the man was talking to the house elf and then stared out towards the lift doors when they headed down to the Major Investigation Department, almost refusing to look at him.
Maybe he had just imagined Director Graves’s injuries a year ago, or had just made them out to be worse than what they actually were. He was standing up perfectly fine with no cane, and he could see that there was indeed a contour in his sleeve of an arm.

They entered the large room, and Newt observed several rows of desks in the middle, some occupied, others empty. A large blinking map with the title Magical Congress of the United States of America Real-Time Hex Indicator blinked brightly in the center of the room. He hurried to catch back up to Tina and Graves, unsure as to what was going to happen, his mind running a mile a minute.

He did have all his permits up to date...right? He was sure he had made sure before he returned. And he had gotten the case fixed so there shouldn’t, in theory, be a problem with that. He just hoped that no one wanted to look into it. Even with all his permits...there was some animals that were illegal no matter what the reason behind him having them was.

He followed Tina and Graves into a private office, separate from the rest of the room. Compared to the other areas of the building, this room seemed to be designed as older. He could see several antiques on shelves which looked more personal than anything, many magical artifacts of a different nature, several books, and a desktop version of the Magical Exposure Threat Level Measurer. The furniture was dark, the leather chair seemed to be rather new, while a cabinet on the other side seemed to have different types of drinks in it, though he couldn’t tell if it was potions or other drinks. He didn’t spot any family photos or such, though he couldn’t much blame that. Privacy seemed to have been an important factor for Percival Graves. Despite being a bit too dark for his taste, it wasn’t a horrible office. Most certainly roomier than what he had in England.

“Mr. Scamander.”

“Oh! Uh, yes?” He stammered out.

“I’d like to know when you arrived to the States.”

“Earlier this week. Tina and her sister, Queenie picked me up from the docks.” He answered.

“Can you verify this, Tina?”

“Yes, Sir. Queenie dragged him to dinner nearly as soon as he reached us.” Tina responded and Graves looked at her, seeming to analyze her.

“Is that the case?” He finally asked, looking back at Newt.

“Yes Sir.”

“I’ve counted the head of every creature since my arrival, every night.” Newt offered up, looking at a particularly strange clock. Graves shifting ever so slightly caused him to look back and his heart skipped a beat at the look Graves was giving him, blue-green latching onto dark, almost black, brown eyes for a moment before looking away.

“And?”

“None have been unaccounted for. Even the niffler.”

“What, pray tell is a-”

“Sir, I really don’t think Mr. Scamander would have really any knowledge of the disappearances.” Tina interrupted, either to save herself from listening to the lecture on nifflers again, or to save Graves from it, Newt couldn’t really tell. “He just arrived earlier this week. Bridget Smith disappeared three month ago. And the others sporadically since then.” Tina broke in.

“And the creature in Central Park?”

“Coincidence. I don’t keep hippogriffs in my case.” Newt explained. “Well...usually…” he amended, “I truly don’t know where it came from. It could have escaped smugglers, been ousted by its flock, numerous factors.” Newt continued. Graves stared at him again and Newt swallowed, his grip tightening on the handle of his case.

“I see.” Newt glanced around nervously, looking at Tina again, and Graves exhaled, rubbing the bridge of his nose. “You’re not under arrest, Mr. Scamander. Contrary to what you were shown last year, which I’m not sure any of us apologized to you for...”

“Last year?”

Tina seemed to snort, hiding it through a cough as Graves looked at him incredulously.

“You were captured, questioned, and sentenced to death.”

“Yes?” Newt asked, glancing up at him.

“And you bear no ill will over it? No questions about it?”

“Should I? It wasn’t you giving the order, so...”

There was silence as, punctuated only by the ticking of the clocks.

“I am not angry at MACUSA, Mr. Graves. I don’t think I really could be. The Magical Congress, you, and others, were just as much a victim as I was."

“I vaguely remember getting a howler from your brother that begged to differ.”

“Theseus is well...Theseus.” Newt admitted weakly. “I told him he really shouldn’t have done that. That it wasn’t really you sentencing me and well...thinking about it now, it was probably obvious that it wasn’t you and-”

“Come again?”

Newt jumped at the interruption and looked up at Graves who was staring at him.

“There...ah...there are very minute, but still very clear differences between how he portrayed you and how you actually are.” Newt offered and Percival turned to stare at him, with an expression Newt couldn’t quite place.

“How would you know?”

“I, well, I have trained myself to pick up on nonverbal clues.” He paused, searching for the right words. “It’s important to be sensitive to such things when working with magical animals. Less likely to anger one and be injured or eaten.” Graves looked at him and Newt felt the back of his neck heat up, and he glanced away. “Since that would not be...well...wise…” he trailed off, scratching the back of his neck at the intensity of the stare.

“What were-”

A knock sounded on the door before a mousey woman peered through the partially opened door, nervously looking at everyone in the room.

“Director?”

“What is it Ms. Espinosa?” Graves replied, his eyes never leaving Newt’s, before the latter of the two looked down at the floor, focusing on the girl speaking.

“Madame President has some matters to discuss with you.”

Graves exhaled slowly, and Newt thought he saw him mutter ‘why me’ before looking at Tina.

“...Very well. Goldstein, I’ll let you escort Mr. Scamander out. Then I expect a report on the hippogriff in Central Park.”

Tina sighed.

“Yes, Sir. Come on Newt.” Tina said and the magizoologist was more than happy to follow. They were silent for a few moments, before Tina looked at him.

“I’m sorry about that. Mister Graves can be a little..intense at times. I doubt he’s in the greatest of moods for interrupting his lunch.”

“It’s alright. To be expected of course.” Newt muttered, glancing at the closed door before back at Tina. “Why did he think that a creature is what is kidnapping the children?” Newt asked, getting to the point and Tina seemed to grow weary.

“They all vanish in similar ways I suppose. But they’re too clean, too...orderly to have been snatched by a creature.”

“You’d be surprised by how creatures work...but you seem deadset against a creature.” Newt offered and Tina grimaced.

“It’s not only the manner of the disappearances that’s leading Mr. Graves and I to think they’re all related, Newt…” Tina explained, her voice tired almost sorrowful, and Newt paused, looking back at her. “for one, none of them came from the happiest of homes, as a lot of them were having trouble, and witnesses say that every place that a child has vanished from, they were talking to a person before they’re just gone, like the Pied Piper, and well...given what happened last year...” Newt felt something knot in his stomach. “I know this sounds horrible, but-”

“No.” Newt interrupted. “An obscurus isn’t just something that develops because of a strained household life. If that was the case, there’d be a whole lot more of them, and it wouldn’t leave without some sort of mark of destruction in its wake.”

Tina nodded, looking relieved.

“I figured, and that’s what I told Mr. Graves and Madam President, but they’re still wary...especially the President, which I was worried about...”

“But you’re more worried about Mr. Graves and his involvement with the case.”

“He’s...he was always one to take special attention of cases involving children, but now...it’s the only one he really cares about. Which is good I guess...but I don’t know why he’s like this.”

“Perhaps it’s out of guilt?” Newt suggested with a shrug, taking a bite out of the pastry, “Grindelwald did use his image to manipulate Credence. And as far as he and the rest of the MACUSA knows, Credence died that night. In his mind, he let down Credence who was innocent in this whole debacle.”

“I suppose…” Tina muttered, before sighing, “ I don’t know. Anyways, I’m sorry about that.”

“Oh no, it’s no trouble. Understandable actually. I did cause quite a stir when I was here last.” Newt reminded her with a cautious smile and Tina sighed in exasperation.

“Queenie is going to kill me.”


A year ago he had walked down the very hall, limp heavy as he leaned against a cane as he grew used to the prosthetic. Elaine had offered to go along, but he had denied it, not wanting her to hear that he would be fired, though she did at least walk with him, chatting as though nothing was wrong and he wasn’t using her as another way to stay standing.

To say he had been surprised when Seraphina Picquery had said she wasn’t firing him would have been a lie. Yet there he stood again, now without a cane or a worried baby sister in tow, staring at the door of her office, straightening the lapels of his coat before knocking.

“Come in.

He turned the golden handle, forcing himself to not check to see if his hand had actually grasped it, before the door soundlessly opened, almost gliding. The office itself seemed befitting one of the Horned Serpent house, he would always tell her in the past. Though one shelf was solely dedicated to picture frames of friends, family members, and her husband, with his Order of Merlin leaning gently against it, books of different genres and subjects filled shelves decorated on the walls, some sections multilayered and a bit messy, proof of which areas she spent most of her time in. A fire burned in the nearby hearth reminded him of his parents study during the winter. Picquery looked up from her paperwork as he entered.

“Percival.”

“Madame President…” he greeted, “did you need something?”

“Several things, actually. First and foremost, I received news from Abernathy, that a certain Scamander was seen here.” She explained pointedly and he inwardly groaned.

“What about him?”

“Has his creatures been released again?”

“No. He did stop us from killing a hippogriff and put it in his bag, but nothing was released out.”

“Are you sure?”

“I watched it myself.”

Picquery was quiet and then sighed in exasperation. “To be honest, I’m not sure if I desire him here again. You didn’t have the pleasure of being present during his last visit to America,” she said with a grimace, “and thus don’t understand the certain element of… chaos he brings with him.”

“I think I do, Madame,” Percival said with a smirk, remembering Theseus talking about his baby brother at length during the war all those years ago and then later on in the letters he received every once in awhile. “But he’s a magizoologist and recently an author, if I remember correctly.”

“So you’ve heard of him?”

“I met his brother years ago during the war, and I still communicate with him. Plus, Tristan bought the triplets Scamander’s book earlier this year, so lately any storytime has been a page or so of it if I visit.” Percival responded and Picquery only offered a look.

“Then what did you think?”

“Madame?”

“What do you think of him?”

“He…” He trailed off thinking.

To be honest, he had no idea.

Whenever Theseus had talked about his brother or wrote about him, he honestly couldn’t help but picture a younger version of Theseus. A bit taller than himself, wider shoulders, bulkier, with a large infectious smile, energetic, adventurous...a natural leader.

Newt Scamander was anything but.

He was tall, gangly. Almost awkward. Unlike his brother, who would look you straight in the eye, almost in defiance, Newt looked anywhere but in the eyes, making direct eye contact sporadically and communicated through soft stutters and quick words, quickly getting off track in a conversation, and was hard to understand when he grew excited or nervous.

“I’m not sure. He doesn’t seem incredibly dangerous at least.” Percival replied slowly. Picquery’s eyes narrowed for a moment, before she seemed to let it go.

“Secondly…about your investigation…”

“I don’t have any leads yet.” He interrupted, and she looked at him.

“I’ve heard. Most of the other departments don’t think there’s a connection between the cases.”

“You’ve seen the images and reports though...”

“I know. And agree that there are too many coincidences for them to not at least be somewhat connected, but I’m placing a lot of trust in you and Ms. Goldstein, Percival.”

“I understand, Madame President.”

“I hope my instincts about her stay correct,” Picquery said. “ I don’t need to lose anymore aurors.”

He frowned, his hand tightening slightly in the memory of just how far Grindelwald’s influence had spread among the ranks. Three senior aurors, five junior, and a handful of recruits all arrested or fired and put under surveillance for their connections to Grindelwald and his cause. And those were the ones they could find.

No, they most certainly didn’t need to lose anymore.

“I have faith in Ms. Goldstein, Madame,” Percival repeated.

“I’ve noticed...” She replied dryly and then pursed her lips, “you’re going to need to be careful on this case, Percival.”

“I always am.”

“Don’t think I don’t know why you’ve become so focused on this, Percival.” Seraphina remarked and he was quiet before she sighed.

“You haven’t been sleeping again.”

“There are missing children, Phee. I intend to find them.” He said, forgoing the formalities.

“Sleep is necessary.”

“The longer they’re gone...the harder it will be to find them.”

“So this has nothing to do with nightmares?” She pointed out and he looked away. “You’re not as subtle as you think, Percival.”

“I’ll be fine.”

“You recovered quicker than any healer could have expected, managing to recuperate enough for prosthetics in a series of months rather than years.”

“What’s your point?”

“My point is, Percival...you don’t have to push yourself too much.” Picquery said. “I rather like your abilities as the current Director and would rather not have to look for a new one anytime soon.” He smirked and gave a slight nod.

“Yes Ma’am.”

Chapter Text

Tina wondered what she had done to deserve this. Maybe she had eaten a cursed hot dog, or pissed off someone enough to lay a bad luck charm on her. Whatever the reason, she hoped it’d be over soon as she inwardly groaned and looked up at yet another auror, Irwin Randall, came up with a grin on his face.

“So I hear that you ran into Scamander again.”

“Oh not you too.”

“Hey, it was memorable the last time he was here.”

“And he’s hoping to not repeat that.” Tina defended. Irwin chuckled, a bright smile on his face.

“So you didn’t miss your boyfriend at all?”

“Boy-?! Now wait gosh darn minute, he’s not my boyfriend!”

“He isn’t?”

“No, he most certainly is not.” Tina replied shortly, rereading what she wrote about the hippogriff another time. “He’s more like an awkward big brother than a boyfriend.”

“True...he is plenty awkward. Hey, did you know he was temporarily expelled from Hogwarts?”

“I heard.” She replied after a few minutes, not wanting to explain how she knew. She still had nightmares of that interrogation, even though she knew that Grindelwald was the one behind her attempted murder.

“Any idea over what it was?”

“Why?”

“I don’t know, just seems odd don’t you think? Reports said it was a creature, but he seems pretty good with handling those types of things. He doesn’t seem to be the kind of person that gets expelled for something stupid.”

Tina was silent in her agreement, because it was true. Newt wasn’t the type of person to needlessly put someone in danger, let the creature harm another student, or have done anything that would have warranted expulsion.

“I don’t know…” She admitted, “that’s something that he has to tell us in his own time. We can’t force that out of him.”

“I guess you’re right. Wonder what he’s doing right now.”

Tina smirked and chose not to answer.


“He is a handsome creature.”

“He is.” Newt agreed as he brushed the hippogriff and the creature seemed to swell with pride, feathers ruffling slightly to appear bigger before returning to the bucket of food that was before it. There didn’t seem to be anything wrong with the creature, which was a blessing. It was a wild one, definitely not one that had been raised or even domesticated. The fact it hadn’t shied away from him was a miracle in itself.

Queenie smiled as she sat on the second to last step of his shed, listening to the echoes of the creatures beyond, the lighting soft and gentle.

“So what is his name going to be?”

“I’m not sure to be honest…perhaps Brooklyn?” Queenie laughed as the hippogriff smacked the back of his head with its tail, clearly not liking the idea.

“Or not.” Newt mumbled, rubbing the back of his head as Queenie calmed herself down.

“I’ll go with a no on that, Newt.” She said, before clearing her throat. “So, how was France?”

“Oh it was nice.” Newt replied, perking up. “I got to see the Beast of Gévaudan, which isn’t as man-eating as the legends say. People were wandering into its territory, so it was defending. The Nain Rouge was a bit trickier, but not as angry as everyone thinks.”

“Meet anyone nice? Anyone special?” Queenie teased and Newt’s face turned red.

“Merlin, no. I haven’t had the time, haven’t had…the presence of mind, haven’t…”

“Oh it’s alright, I was just teasing.” Queenie said softly, though had he looked up, he would have noticed a sad expression on her face. “You never know, you might find a special someone.”

“Unlikely. I annoy people too much.” Newt muttered with a bittersweet smile, rubbing a hand lightly on the hippogriffs beak. “Besides, I have my creatures...that’s good enough.”

Queenie watched him, trying her hardest to not look into his mind. He didn’t like that and she knew that. But the pain was rippling through her.

“Oh look, it’s Newt. Find any new creatures Newt?”

“Maybe he likes them more than people.”

“Ew!! Gross!!”

“Why can’t you be like your brother?”

“It’s probably better that we aren’t seen together anymore Newt...I’m sorry…”

She bit her bottom lip to stifle her response, shaking her head as he glanced at her. “I stand by what I said last year.” She finally decided to say. “You don’t need a taker...you need a giver.”

He was silent, holding her gaze for a few moments before looking away.

“I’m quite alright, Queenie…” He said with a smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes. “Truly I am.”

If only Queenie really believed it, she wish she could. The feeling didn’t go away like she had wished it had. Didn’t go away as she left Newt to his own devices. Didn’t go away as she walked to Jacob’s bakery.

Jacob looked at her in concern later on as she sighed, swirling a cup of cocoa slowly.

“Queenie?”

“Oh! Sorry, were you saying something??” She asked quickly.

“No. Sweetheart...what’s wrong?” Jacob said softly and she bit her lip, hesitating for a moment.

“He’s just so lonely Jacob…” She began and he didn’t need to guess who, “he’s always saying he’s fine. But he’s not. He wears his heart on his sleeve and it’s hurting so badly. He’s lonely but he’s just resigned to being alone.”

Jacob frowned, setting a tray of pastries down.

“Queenie…”

“Newt deserves someone who loves him, and he should be happy.”

“I know...I know.” Jacob said softly, cupping her cheek lightly and Queenie sighed, relaxing against him. “He’s gone through a lot, but he has us...right now that’s important. Knows he’s not all alone right?”

“I guess…” She murmured, nuzzling Jacob’s hand lightly. Jacob smiled lightly, giving her a quick kiss on the cheek. She giggled softly.

“Things will work out for him. Might just take him awhile to find that someone that can handle him.”

“True. The one who hitches up with Newt is going to have an awful amount of patience.”

“Wonder who that would be?”


“That isn’t much to go on, Perry.”

“I know. But none of my contacts here have an idea as to why the children are vanishing.” Percival explained, pouring himself a glass of Campbell’s Dragon Fire Whiskey. “And don’t call me Perry.”

“I can call you that all I want. Older sister privileges and all.”

Percival rolled his eyes, giving his older sister’s face a half-hearted glare. She smirked, pushing back a long strand of hair. “Half of the time, people think I’m the oldest sibling.”

“That’s because you don’t smile often enough. All those wrinkles aren’t good for you.” She joked and he rolled his eyes. “Anyways, like I said, looking at these reports, there hasn’t been any smuggling or slavery rings that my...contacts...have informed me about. But then again, they aren’t the most savory folk.”
His frown grew and he sat down in front of the contact mirror. He knew and understood that being an investigative reporter, and a good one at that, made her coming in contact with those on the other side of law a prevalent thing. Hell, her investigative research had been a large factor in discovering which aurors were Grindelwald followers in his department. But still...

“I wish you didn’t involve yourself in these men and women, Seb.”

“I’m a big girl, Perry.”

“I know that, but you’re an investigative journalist. And I know you know the risks,” he amended at her look, “but half of these men and women I’ve probably have had arrested at some point and time. I’m allowed to worry about you.” He explained and she sighed, offering a sympathetic smile

“I know, and it’s appreciated. Calvin worries too, but like I’ve told you-”

“You can take care of yourself, I know. But need I remind you that I’ve had to run over to save you when you got in over your head?”

“That was one time.”

“There was also that time at the Great Lakes-”

“ALRIGHT, alright...spoilsport.”

He grinned, before hearing faded footsteps coming up to where Sebille was, and his smile grew as he spotted a small head poking up at the corner of the mirror, curious hazel eyes brightening and a young girl perked up, scrambling onto Sebille’s lap.

“Uncle Percy!!” The little girl gleefully said, dark auburn curls bouncing excitedly from her movements and he chuckled lightly.

“Hello Cora.”

“Cora, weren’t you playing with your brother?” Sebille asked and Cora pouted, crossing her arms in defiance. A look from Sebille had him holding back a smile as apparently she looked at acted far too much like him.

“I was, but Freddy doesn’t play fair!! He and the boys all go into the park, and leave me on a bench. Say I’m the ‘hostage’ they need to save and then they just leave. And it was too cold to sit in the park, Mama!”

“She does have a point, Seb.” Percival replied, frowning. Cora was too young to just be sitting out at the park alone. And with the disappearances, Grindelwald knowing that he would sooner die than have any of his family harmed...it was too much of a risk. And judging by the frown on Sebille’s face, she agreed.

“And it’s boring!” Cora prompted and Sebille sighed, brushing a hand over the girl’s head.

“Sweetie, Mommy will talk to Fred and his friends about including you alright? Now Uncle Percy and I have to finish talking and then it’ll be time for dinner.”

“Awwww. But-”

“Cora.”

The little girl looked down and then nodded before waving a hand towards the mirror.

“Okay...Bye Uncle Percy!”

“Goodbye Cora.”

And with that she squirmed off her mother’s lap and he chuckled slightly when he heard feet running away as Sebille sighed.

“I remember when she just clung to you or Calvin and didn’t want to let go. She barely reached my knee then.” Percival responded and Sebille chuckled.

“She’s growing like a weed. Soon I’ll be having polite young men at our door saying they’ve come to pick her up on a date.”

There was no way that was going to happen. Until she was of age. Or thirty. Thirty seemed good to Percival. He looked at the mirror as Sebille’s laughter echoed in the room.

“Oh the look on your face right now, and this is just your niece. I pray that you never get a daughter. The poor thing is going to become a spinster with you as her father.”

He kept quiet at that response. As much as he thought about it, in all likelihood, he wouldn’t see that thought come to fruition. At first, it was because he was busy with work. But now, what person would want a man who was missing half of their limbs?

“Back to the matter at hand.” Sebille’s voice floated back and he dragged his consciousness back to what she was saying. “I haven’t heard anything through my channels. However, I’ll keep my ears open and my eyes wide. News travels fast here.”

“Thank you Sebille.”

“Never a problem.” She replied, before looking at him. “Have you been sleeping?”

“Not you too.” Percival grumbled. “I’m fine, no need to nag.”

“Part of the big sister job, Perry. I’m allowed to nag.”

“I know...I know.” He amended, before sighing pushing back several loose strands of hair. “Sorry...the case has been...stressful. But I’m fine. Really.”

“We’re family, Perry. We never mind being there for you.”

“I know.”

“Remember if you need anything…”

“To call, I know.” He replied with a chuckle.

“Stay safe, Percival.”

“Same to you.” Percival replied and slowly the image vanished. He sighed, slumping in his chair and pushing his hair back. He slowly swirled his drink, staring around the emptiness of his living room. Maybe he would be able to sleep without any nightmares tonight.

He took a swig of his drink, almost laughing at himself.

Still, after a little bit of stalling, he slowly stood up and limped towards his room, the ache of his right leg growing harder and harder to ignore and he practically fell onto the bed, numbly working the straps and sliding the prosthetic off, massaging the muscle lightly with his hand, before going and taking the arm off as well, repeating the process. He dragged his fingers through his hair again as he laid down, staring dully at the ceiling.

Sleeping without any nightmares…

He could only wish.


“So where would doxies be located?”

“Generally they prefer colder climates,” Newt explained as he helped Queenie and then a huffing and puffing Jacob over a small ravine as they hiked up the path into the Beaver Creek Forest, “seclusion is also highly sought after for them, with plenty of trees to climb.”

“Alright.”

“And we have to be careful...getting bitten by them is not recommended as you would need anti-venom pretty soon after.”

“...Of course you do.”

“Not to worry, they’re rather harmless creatures, you just can’t startle them.”

“Newt, no offense but I distinctly remember the last time you told me not to worry, an Erumpent tried to make me her boyfriend.” Jacob responded, wiping at his face. Newt offered a grin, before looking up at Queenie, who had a perplexed look on her face.

“Queenie? Something the matter?”

“Well...are these wards?” She asked as the two men got to her side. Newt frowned.

“Wards?”

“Protective enchantments.” Newt explained, pulling his wand out. “Spells used to protect an area that the caster wants protected.”

“Well...how can you tell they’re here then?”

“These are pretty quickly done wards, by the looks of it. And not well done.” Queenie replied, swishing her own wand and Jacob could see a thin layer of air bursting like a bubble and they could see the makings of a campground appear in front of them. Queenie looked around. “Usually you can’t really see them. Or even sense them.” She focused on a particular tree that had more wards on it. Strange. “They must have been poorly done, like they were rushed or some-”

“Queenie...you’re going to have to get Tina."

“Newt?”

He wasn’t staring at them, instead he was looking over her and slowly Queenie followed his gaze, before gasping and backing up towards where Jacob and Newt were standing, the former pulling her closer and she hid her face into his shoulder.

Because the two forms that laid sprawled on the ground further into the campground were far too cleanly dressed to have been exploring the park and far too still to be asleep.

Newt’s gaze shifted around. Magical residue saturated the air, so either they were of magical descent or their attackers were. But the wards around the campsite...He stared at the ground taking note of the tracks littering the area, his brow furrowing.

“Queenie, go to the MACUSA and find Tina...drop Jacob before you enter...we don’t want them obliviating him.”

“Right…” Queenie said weakly, sniffling and wiping at her face, and Jacob looked at her in concern and took her hands tightly in his. She looked at Newt.

“Are you sure you don’t want to go with us?”

“I’ll stay here. Make sure nothing leaves or enters.” He promised and she nodded before disapparting.

Then there was nothing but silence.

It wasn’t his first time that he had come across bodies in the woods, he thought, remembering when he had been in Asia and had found a pair of campers that had had an unfortunate encounter with a creature. Creature encounters weren’t uncommon, magical or no, after all. However looking around at the prints around them, it didn’t make much sense. Actually it didn’t make any sense. No creature in this part of the States was known to leave prey out in the open where scavengers could snatch them.His gaze dragged up back towards the warded tree when he thought he heard a sound, before everything grew silent. He blinked several times, unsure if he had imagined it, and slowly began to break the wards, before he heard a familiar popping sound.

“Newt? What’s going on?” Tina called frantically as she and Graves came around the bend and to him. Newt blinked several times. Blast, he hadn’t thought that more than Tina would show up. “Queenie said that you needed me here! That there were-” Tina began before Newt gestured to the two bodies and Tina gaped, while Percival walked over to them slowly, examining the two bodies.

“They weren’t killed in a no-maj way.” He concluded evenly.

“Yes, I believe so. Queenie and J...I...Queenie and I were out on a hike to see if I could find any doxies. I suggested I’d stay here as a beacon of sorts.” Newt muttered, thankful to have caught himself “I haven’t the foggiest idea on what could have happened to them though.” He stammered out, flustered as he noticed Graves staring at him before watching as Graves returned to investigate the ground for clues, noticing the same tracks in the dirt as he had.

“These tracks...could it be a creature?” Graves asked and Newt shook his head, pointing at them.

“They’re certainly well done, but it’s unlikely. While there are plenty of creatures that are carnivorous and dangerous, the fact remains that these are too uniform. And creatures don’t usually go directly into a campground, attack, and then leave what they would consider food or even an intruder in an unknown location. They tend to-” His rambling was cut off as the tree covered in wards began to wail, this time loud and clear. And glancing back at the aurors he could see by their expressions he hadn’t just imagined it.

“I’ve been breaking the wards slowly…” he began as Tina and Graves stared, blinking, their expressions similar to some of the owls he’d had seen at the Owlery.

“Is that...a baby?”

Newt didn’t answer as he watched Percival Graves ignore Tina as well and stride slowly forward to the tree, continuing and gingerly breaking the weakened wards and moved a discarded branch, then waved his hand and Newt could see the air ripple around him before breaking apart. Newt looked over the other man’s shoulder and there, crying its’ little heart out, was a small baby, bundled in a blanket. The baby’s crying slowly quieted as it blinked and noticed them, looking up at the stunned adults for a few moments before beginning to cry again, stretching tiny hands up towards them, wanting to be held.

“Mercy Lewis...” Tina whispered. Newt, however, didn’t hesitate and reached in, ignoring the possible danger of a hex or curse as he gingerly picked up the infant. As Newt backed away from the tree cradling the baby, Percival no more realized that he was taking off his coat before he had completed the task and handing over to Newt. Newt offered a grateful, if a surprised look towards him, wrapping the baby in it, but Percival glanced over at Tina, before Newt could anything.

“Goldstein, can you escort Mr. Scamander to Saint Agatha’s?”

“Yes, Sir. Come on Newt.”

Newt looked back at Percival as he pulled his wand out.

“Expecto Patronum Nuntius.”

The last thing he saw before Tina apparated away with him was a silver falcon flying in front of Graves before the forest vanished in a swirling vortex of colors.


He awoke slowly to a dimly lit room, his body sore, the familiar tingling ache resonating to his bones. But it was...dulled, the aches not as prominent.

It took him only a moment to recognize that he was in a hospital room.

And to recognize the healer that was muttering something against a wound on his wrist. The chafed skin from the shackle, useless as he couldn’t really walk or crawl missing a leg and arm, but Grindelwald was careful.

Elaine Graves jumped as his fingers lightly touched her wrist and she looked up at his face, her own lighting up.

“You’re awake.” She said simply, seeming to wilt under his gaze before swallowing roughly, gentle fingers carding through messy hair. She then flitted her fingers away, nervous.

Unsure.

Of what? Him?

No...she was unsure if he would even want comfort. After all, probably in her mind, she could have sensed something if she had tried harder to visit him. Probably, he realized slowly, she was wondering how it was even possible for him to not hate her.

He stared at her, and the moment she glanced up she automatically looked down, a familiar reaction from when their mother was going to scold them for doing something wrong.

Mercy Lewis, did she really think that?

Her bottom lip was trembling violently as she warred with remaining professional and checking his injuries before heading likely to where their family was or just breaking down. He caught her trembling arm as she began to move away.

“Elli…” He managed to wheeze out.

And that apparently did her in, as whatever thin strand of restraint she had built snapped and she began to cry, moving forward, wrapping her arms around his neck. He laid there stunned for a few moments, the feeling of touch that wasn’t aimed to hurt almost a distant dream to him.

But when she didn’t vanish, when she just dug her fingers into the collar of his shirt, his eyes burned and his only usable hand grasped her uniform tightly, burying his face into his little sister’s shoulder.

And here he was again though under different, he mused dryly as he stared down the hall at St. Agatha’s. Sighing, he moved away from the spot he had rooted himself in the entranceway to prepare himself. Walking through here did little to quiet his memories, however. He then spotted the woman he was looking for. Tina looked up and stood as Percival entered the hallway.

“Sir!”

“How’s the condition on the infant?”

“Stable. And other than a little bit of a diaper rash, being a bit smelly, she seems relatively healthy.”

“She?”

“Mhm. Little girl.” Tina replied, her expression sad. “They think she can’t be any older than a few months.”

Percival frowned, looking down the hall to where he could Scamander sitting on the edge, the little baby cradled gently in one of his arms, while he held a bottle for the baby to eat. It was a strange sight to him, but Tina didn’t seem all that surprised.

“So any-”

“Percival?”

He looked over and offered a slight smile as a petite woman wearing the St. Agatha’s healer uniform, with dark hair shortened into a bob, stood there, staring at him with curious green eyes, her head cocked to the side in concern. He sighed.

“Elli, I’m not the one injured here.”

“This time.” Elaine added with a smirk, before shaking her head, “Anyway, it’s a relief.” The woman chirped happily and Percival could feel Tina’s gaze flip between the both of them.

“Elaine Graves, my little sister.” He introduced to her and Tina smiled politely.

“Porpentina Goldstein. You can just call me Tina.”

“Pleased to meet you. So, what are you here for Percival?”

“An associate of Goldstein was the one who found the infant in the woods.” Percival responded, gesturing to where Scamander was. Elaine frowned in sympathy.

“I heard about her from the other healers. Her parents?”

“Dead.” Percival replied and Elaine frowned in sympathy.

“Poor thing...” She trailed off, before pulling Tina away just in time to avoid a man violently puking, the vomit hitting exactly where she had been standing.

“Some bad food poisoning. I say avoid the Weeping Willow Bar.” Elaine muttered and Percival snorted, glancing back at Scamander and saw he was now staring at the three, curiosity evident in his face.

He barely managed a step forward, when the din of the hospital vanished and heeled steps echoed down the corridor. He turned to see, to his surprise, Picquery striding easily forward, several aurors struggling to keep up, impeccably regal looking in her suit and matching turban and catching attention without even trying.

Hinting enough on how annoyed she truly was.

“Mr. Scamander.”

The magizoologist looked up in surprise,

“Madam President,” Scamander said, seeming to flail a bit. It was clear he wanted to bow or something, but holding the infant prevented him from doing so, and clearly he wasn’t going to drop the baby, even for the President of the American Wizarding Community. Instead he dropped his eyes and hunched his shoulders forward a bit, trying to make himself seem smaller than he actually was. Picquery for her credit, refrained from raising her voice as to not alert and upset the now calm baby in Scamander’s arm.

But it was only just.

“Why is it,” Picquery remarked, “that you seem to arrive just when trouble here seems to be at its peak?”

“Bad luck?” Newt offered. “I don’t actively search for trouble.” He added but quailed at a look from Picquery and she opened her mouth to speak.

‘Everything'll be alright’, you say. ‘I’ll keep a low profile’, you promise. And you wonder why I always have a hard time believing you.”
Newt looked up, stunned and ignoring Picquery, looking over her shoulder. Percival’s brow rose at the sudden expression of dread on his face, and turned to see a person.

A very, very, VERY familiar person.


“Th-theseus...what are you doing-”

“Newton Artemis Fido Scamander, why is it I get a parchment letter, days after you promise you’ll stay out of trouble, that you get nearly arrested, again in the US? This time over a hippogriff, and I arrive here, only to find out that you were seen heading to the hospital? You said that you-”

He cut off abruptly as he spotted the little baby still happily suckling on a bottle in Newt’s arms.

“AND WHERE THE BLOODY HELL DID YOU GET THIS KID!!”

“She-”

“Mister Scamander?”

Newt’s gaze jerked to his brother’s side and he could hear a faint squeaking sound from Tina as a tiny form poked his head from under Theseus’s coat, clutching his trouser leg tightly. It felt as though the air had been sucked out of the room as the aurors stared at a familiar looking boy, though younger now that looked at them curiously.

Credence Barebone looked around curiously at the stunned people in the room as Theseus offered a slight shrug and Newt groaned under his breath. Yes, he supposed Tina was accurate in one thing.

Trouble certainly did follow him around in the States.

Chapter Text

“He’s not a danger.”

“Do you know what mayhem he did a year ago? Did your brother tell you of that or did he omit that?” Picquery asked, looking over at Newt who squirmed under her gaze. “That...boy killed several no-maj’s and nearly exposed the Wizarding World-”

“Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Grindelwald lead to about half of what you just said to happen? You know considering he’s the one who manipulated Credence in the first place after he infiltrated the government here.” Theseus interrupted, crossing his arms in defiance and Newt inwardly groaned. “And if the laws here didn’t completely break off communication with no-maj’s he might have been found earlier when he started to show magical tendencies.”

“Mr. Scamander-”

A loud squeal echoed in the room and all the adults turned to see the baby giggling loudly at Credence as the boy held her, Tina and Queenie sitting on either side of him, Queenie’s hand lightly under the baby’s head. Not that either child noticed. The baby kept on babbling in baby talk, pressing small fingers at Credence’s cheeks, pulling at his hair and his mouth.

Despite flinching a few times during hair tugging, Credence remained still, grinning and giving the little girl a peck on the cheek, earning another laugh from her.

“See?” Theseus remarked, “Even a baby can see that he’s not a threat.”

“You were not there.”

“Theseus…” Newt hissed under his breath.

“He hasn’t shown any obscurial behavior since he was taken into my family’s care. Amazing what an actual healthy family can do.” Theseus replied nonchalantly. “He’s just been a normal, happy, healthy boy.”

“How is he a boy again?” Picquery asked, an elegantly trimmed brow rising in disbelief. “The obscurus was in his late teens, probably early twenties. This...boy...doesn’t look like he’s past the age of ten.”

"Obscurus are known to usually manifest around 7 or 8 year olds, possibly younger depending on the severity of the child rejecting their magic.” Newt finally spoke, glancing at Credence for a moment, before looking back at Picquery, the aurors, and his brother, “Credence was an anomaly. Extremely powerful and the fact that he survived as long as he did suppressing his magic is a miracle in itself. A part of the Obscurus parasite may have managed to survive and had enough energy to ‘regrow’ to a certain extent, but not completely to the same age Credence was.”

“So you went searching for him before you left a year ago?”

“What? No, of course not. I didn’t even know he had survived until I was halfway to France and went down to feed my creatures.” Newt explained hurriedly. “By then, the obscurial had had enough time to gather energy and form itself back into well...back into Credence.”

“Regardless of where you found him, he still poses a risk, Mr. Scamander.” Picquery stated.

“He hasn’t shown any signs of the obscurus even being there.” Newt offered meekly.

“And it has nothing to do with your own feelings about the welfare of him?”

“But-”

“My mother is a hippogriff breeder, and my father was an auror.” Theseus interrupted, looking at the group blandly, “and I’m an auror. We all have skills and knowledge on what is or isn’t safe. Even if we’re related to Newt, we would have alerted someone if we thought he posed a threat. Here’s the question though. Are you really going to murder an unarmed boy who doesn’t even know how to use magic properly?”

There was silence in the room for a moment.

“No.”

Newt blinked and looked over at Percival, who was leaning against a desk, arms crossed.

“We wouldn’t have gone and kill him. You’ll have to forgive us ‘Seus, but you can’t blame us for being cautious and making sure everything is safe with what happened last year.”

“Not at all.” Theseus responded pleasantly, any hints of his anger from before now gone. “So...where’d you find the kid?”

Newt glanced back at the baby and sighed, knowing his brother wasn’t going to like the answer.


And Newt could not have been more right in these circumstances. Percival watched as Theseus’s expression darkened into barely held back rage. It was a sentiment he couldn’t help but share. And judging by Seraphina’s expression, it was a sentiment shared by many of them.

“So some bastard left her in a tree, in the middle of the forest?”

“It could have been her mother in a desperate attempt to protect her.”

“Wards usually break when the owner perishes, unless it’s a powerful ward. And those type of wards aren’t easily done in the middle of a life or death battle.

Percival was silent in his agreement.

“I’d like to see the bodies, if it’s alright with you.”

“Why?” Another auror, Senior Auror Dannic Kirkland asked. Theseus shrugged.

“I’ve met quite a few old...chaps...in Europe during my travels,” Theseus explained, glancing at Percival who stiffened, “and they’ve had some interesting spells under their belt. A collection of them have different burn patterns and such, and it might lend some degree of focus on where they were from or where their attackers were from.”

“...Fine.”

“Seriously? Director-”

“Theseus Scamander would find a way to see the bodies, one way or another, Kirkland.” Percival responded blandly. “Take my word for it, this is the least likely to have us ripping our hair out.”

“Is that right?” Seraphina remarked dryly and Theseus offered a shrug.

“I’m not that bad, Madame President.”

The look she gave him made it clear she wasn’t ready to believe it as they went to the morgue. Theseus wisely kept quiet now, trying to ignore the tension in the air that he had created, and Percival wanted so badly to hit him upside the head as he usually did with Tristan when he did something stupid. But seeing as Theseus wasn’t his brother, and it probably would be frowned upon if the Director of Magical Security decided to smack a man from an allied country across the back of the head, friend or not, he remained quiet.

“Ah, Director, Kirkland, and Madame President? What a surprise.” Bartholomew Gamblesby said, glancing behind them at Theseus.

“I don’t think I’ve met you though, Sir.”

“Oh Theseus Scamander. Pleased to meet you.” Theseus said with a grin.

“Gamblesby.” Percival greeted.

“Here for that couple found in the woods are you? Quite an interesting pair I must say.”

“What makes you say that?”

“Well for starters, the couple weren’t living in the campsite, or at the very least they hadn’t been living there for long.”

“What makes you say that?”

“They’re far too clean to have been living in the woods, and I don’t know any woman who would wear heels into a forest.” He said gesturing to the pair of shoes lying on a tray next to folded clothes. “Cause of death unknown at this point, but I can say it was likely caused by some sort of spell based off the burn patterns on the male’s chest. They certainly put up a struggle based on the defensive wounds.”

“They had a child, it wouldn’t surprise me.” Percival remarked. “But that does mean that the campsite was more of a dumping ground rather than the actual place. It was immaculate, no signs of any fight that I could find.”

“Poor things, to be dead with such a young child.” Bartholomew remarked, pulling the sheet off of the woman’s face.

“We’re not even sure if the baby is related to them though it seems unlikely that…” Seraphina trailed off as she spotted Theseus staring at the woman with a strange expression on his face. He then went over and pulled up the sheet covering the male. He then sighed.

“Merlin’s saggy balls…” He muttered.

“Theseus?”

“Well some congratulations are in order, I suppose.”

“Congratulations?” Percival asked, looking at Theseus confused before the British Auror gestured to the bodies lying on the table.

“Yeah. You managed to find Johann and Monika Kopp.”

“...You know them?”

“Know them? I’ve been trying to hunt them down for attempted murder. I’m not even sure if those are their actual names. Monika was always good at making fake identities.” Theseus muttered, running a hand through his hair. “Dammit all.”

“What can you tell us about them?”

“Not much. The two buggers were good at covering their tracks, I’ll give them that. What we did figure out was that Johann and Monika Kopp were big supporters in Grindelwald’s preachings. Johann was a particularly advanced potioneer, and probably made numerous amounts of poisons for Grindelwald. That’s what got me involved in the first place. A prominent ambassador of the Egyptian Ministry was poisoned in London. We were closing in, but then he just dropped off the face of the earth. Originally we thought he got too confident and accidentally did himself in. But...maybe they bolted when they realized Monika was pregnant.” Theseus suggested with a shrug. “Becoming a parent can really open your eyes to things that you otherwise would ignore. From what I could find, there hadn’t been any record of them having a kid, but if they were scared at what could happen if Grindelwald and his followers found them again, they could have easily made up another set of identities to immigrate here and had their kid in secret. Grindelwald doesn’t let those he deems as traitors to live and leaving the organization is treason worthy by Grindelwald. Hell, it still could have been Grindelwald supporters that offed them.”

“But why did they let the baby live?” Percival asked. “The wards were noticeable to any skilled enough witch or wizard and we’ve both seen enough of Grindelwald’s destruction to know he doesn’t care who lives and who dies.”

“That I can’t answer.”

“So there’s a possibility that these are Grindelwald’s men.”

“Possibly. But you’ve been having issues with disappearances recently. It could be that, or a combination...or anything really.”

“So she’s a risk.” A deep voice asked and even Percival glared at Dannic Kirkland, who gave him a cool glance in return.

“She’s in danger. Not a risk.” Theseus remarked, glaring at the senior auror who spoke as well. “Do you all consider survivors of an attack a risk, or is that just you, Mister...Kirkland, was it?” The man sputtered and Percival could sense that Theseus was pushing it. Picquery looked at him blandly.

“What Auror Kirkland means, Mr. Scamander, is that I cannot in good conscience let the child into the custody of a foster parent without the knowledge that they aren’t at risk of being killed. The risks involved-”

“Then why not let my brother take care of her?”

There was silence as Percival’s brow rose in confusion.

“I’m sorry, I believe I heard incorrectly. Did you suggest letting your younger brother, the magizoologist, take care of a child?”

“Yes I did. Forgive me, Madam President, but you haven’t really met my brother-”

"Believe me, he’s made quite an impression on the MACUSA as a whole, Mr. Scamander.”

“An impression brought on during traumatic events of this country and government. Despite my brother’s awkwardness, he’s fairly capable of handling children.”

“Your brother doesn’t seem all that capable.”

“Because of his general shyness of talking to crowds? Talking to an average person?” Theseus asked, looking at Percival. “That’s just with adults. He feels awkward around them. Now kids, he has no problem talking to children.”

Percival’s brow rose, waiting for an explanation.

“How so?”

“I believe he told me once that children are honest. You don’t have to worry about them saying something with ulterior motives, most of the time at least. And also, with his profession it’s usually the kids who are more interested in learning the hunting habits of some off the wall creature than an adult who believes that they should be dead rather than studied.”

“Still…”

“Do you have any better ideas? Searching for her parent’s families, if she is even related to them, is going to take time. To date, Monika and Johann have at least five identities that I know of.” Theseus remarked, crossing his arms. “And you just said you weren’t comfortable putting her with a foster family without any knowledge of who attacked her parents.”

Seraphina Picquery was silent, stewing over the suggestion for a moment.

“Very well.”

Well, at least the infant would be nearby, Percival mused, though he’d probably assign Tina to look over the child. He couldn’t really picture Newt Scamander to be a-

“Graves, I’m placing you in charge of watching over Mr. Scamander and the infant.”

His head whipped to the side so fast, he was sure he heard his neck crack.

“Excuse me?”

“You heard me perfectly well Graves.” Picquery replied cooly a brow rising in defiance.

“Why?” He hissed under his breath. “I’ve got-”

“She may be very well involved in the case, Graves. And it will keep an eye on Mr. Scamander. Despite what his older brother says,” she said, looking at Theseus who seemed annoyed, but wisely kept his mouth shut, “I am not willing to place a risk over the city.”

“I can assign someone-”

“Director Graves.” Picquery interrupted and he went silent.

“...Very well Madame President.” He ground out, glaring death at Theseus who shrugged weakly.

“Mister Gamblesby, I want a copy of your report on the Kopp’s deaths sent to myself and Director Graves.”

“Yes Madame President.” The other man said kindly, giving Percival a sympathetic look before turning back to the bodies. She looked at Theseus coolly, before looking at the two American aurors and walking ahead. Kirkland for his credit, seemed to sense the growing tension between his boss and the British man, and all but bolted after the President. As soon as the pair turned the corner, Percival punched Theseus’s arm, earning a yelp.

“What the bloody hell was that for?!”

“For?! What the hell were you thinking pawning the baby off on your brother!”

“It’s not like I knew your president was going to assign you of all people to watch over him and the baby! Hell, I thought she would have kicked both me and Newt out with the kid just to get us out of your hair!”

“This is like the Belgian Coast all over again.” Percival muttered under his breath, as he stalked back towards his department, Theseus close on his heels.

“Oh come on, it is not like the Belgian Coast. For one we don’t have muggles shooting at us while we’re dodging spells from German wizards. That was dangerous.”

“And bringing a boy who you knew full well was a risk, isn’t?”

“Okay, enough on Credence. The boy isn’t any more a risk than you or I were when we were that age. You’re being unfair to him by even thinking that.”

“We have no reason to trust-”

“You do. He doesn’t, Percy.” Theseus interrupted and Percival paused, looking at him. “You weren’t there and neither was I. Despite what the President makes him seem to be, and considering how much damage he did in a two days, he could have gone rogue years before that, so there in itself should gain some trust he won’t explode like that. Him on the other hand, was abused by a woman who hated magic to its very bone, to the point a parasitic creature formed in him and lashed out whenever it could. That very creature that Grindelwald kidnapped you to try and locate, manipulating an attention starved kid to get it. And then when he finally breaks, and all that pent up magic breaks through, your department damn well tried to kill him and nearly succeeded. Out of anyone here, he has the least reason to trust.”

“Then why bring him here?”

“Because he trusts me, and he trusts Newt,” Theseus explained, “and he knows that we won’t let anything hurt him if we can help it.”
Theseus paused and looked back at Percival.

“And I warn you, if anything does happen to him, it won’t be just Newt you’d have to worry about.”

Percival stared at him before nodding slowly and the two men walked back to Department for Magical Security. Theseus chuckled lightly as they spotted his brother surrounded by aurors, all looking at the little baby. Percival noted that he seemed much more at ease with both children close to him than he had a few minutes ago. He cleared his throat and everyone looked up. Scamander glanced at him and then his brother, curious.

“What are you all looking at?” Percival barked and the aurors jumped, “Back to work!”

The aurors all scrambled away to their desks and Percival turned his attention back to Scamander.

Might as well get it over and done with.

“The baby-”

“Rosalind.”

“...I beg your pardon?”

“This is Rosalind. Or Rosie. Rosie, why don’t you say hi?”

The little girl responded with a large yawn, squirming around in Newt’s arms, rubbing at her eyes with tiny fists and Queenie, as well as several of the nearby female and some of the male aurors Percival observed dryly, seemed to squeal at her, the latter of the group quieting and turning away under a look from Percival, before he looked back at Newt.

“You named her?”

“Well your department has no idea on what her name actually is. And it’s better than just calling her ‘the baby’, ‘her’, or ‘it’.” Newt muttered and Percival let out an exasperated sigh.

“Well...Rosalind...is now under your care until the matter of her parents deaths is solved. And until then, I will be...monitoring...you and the baby in the meantime.”
There was silence in the group, dead silence. Newt was blinking owlishly, his gaze flickering from him to his brother, and then to Tina, who looked stunned. Percival, to his annoyance, heard another voice, a familiar snort and didn’t need to turn to see that Tristan must have come up to bring him a lunch, and now heard everything.
Inwardly he groaned and shot his brother a look that he would talk with him later.

“So...am I…”

“You will be...residing...in my home for a short while until everything can be sorted out and the correct wards are properly put into place.”

Newt opened his mouth to object.

“Newt, it’s the only way to keep watch over Rosie personally.” Theseus interrupted looking at his brother. Newt closed his mouth with a click, and glanced back down at the infant. He seemed to war with himself before sighing.

“If that’s what is believed to be best.” He finally muttered and Credence shyly looked over at him, before hiding his face back in Newt’s coat.

“Well...if it’s all the same to you, I’ll take my brother for dinner and then drop them off at your place.” Theseus said and Percival remained quiet, nodding only slightly, a frown deeply set on his face. Credence scampered over to Theseus as Newt stood, glancing over at him once again, a curious expression in those blue-green eyes, before following Theseus out of the department. Tina and Queenie glanced at one another and then after a minute or so, hurried after the two brothers. Percival dragged a hand over his face roughly, silently cursing himself. He heard soft footsteps and looked up to stare at his brother.

“So...”

“Tristan, so help me, I will ram my shoe so far into your ass that Elli won’t be able to find it, if you don’t stop.”

“Alright, alright. And you wonder why Mama says you don’t have a sense of humor. Out of curiosity though, do you have anything at your place for a baby?” Tristan asked and Percival paused, “I mean Seb and I never had our kids stay the night with you. There’s a bit more to it…”

“...Fuck me.” Percival grumbled and Tristan sighed, before smiling lightly at his brother.

“Well gee, Percy...where are you going to find a crib on short notice?” He teased, cocking his head to the side. “Seeing as I have three.”

“Tristan...”

“What? I don’t mind, the triplets have their own beds anyways, and it’s just taking up space in the attic.”

“But Livia…”

“Livia has already told me that if I so much as get her pregnant again, I’ll be without testicles 30 seconds afterwards. So, the prospect of me needing a crib anytime soon is slim to none.” He said with a chuckle. “But in all seriousness, you’re going to need something to put her in.”

Percival was quiet and the affirmation was silently received.

“Keep it quiet, Tristan.”

“Alright.” Tristan said with a smirk. “And would you stop worrying? What’s the worse that could happen?”

Percival kept quiet as his brother walked away, wondering if he told him that with how much mayhem that Newt and Theseus Scamander would look likely create, that even the family reunion of 1900 would look like child’s play, the youngest son of the Graves family would even believe him.


“Sorry baby brother, unfortunately couldn’t get Madam President to let you be under my watch.”

“You certainly didn’t help by arguing with her over Credence.”

“What can I say? Seeing your memories of them ‘killing’ him, no matter how much she spins it as justifiable and though a part of him survived, pissed me off.”

“I know, but don’t forget that at the moment you’re-”

“Representing the Ministry of Magic and all that. I know Mother,” Theseus remarked, taking a swig of coffee and grimacing, “bloody hell this is horrible.”

“I’m just saying ‘Seus, you have to be careful here...”

“Isn’t this supposed to be in reverse where the bigger brother is giving out advice?”

“Not when you can’t take your own advice.”

Theseus chuckled, whisking away his disposable cup before they began to exit the Woolworth Building. Theseus paused, looking at his brother as Credence clutched Newt’s coat while Rosalind shifted slightly in the crook of Newt’s arm.

“And here, Mum and Dad always thought I was the one who would give them grandkids first.” He joked and Newt snorted lightly.

“Newt! Mr. Scamander!”

The two brother’s paused for a moment, turning to see Queenie and Tina hurrying over to them, running down the steps.

“Where are you two going?”

“Well I was going to go and get my younger brother and Credence some dinner before I have to return them to Percy.”

“...Percy?”

“Not without us, you’re not!” Queenie chirped with a brilliant smile, ignoring her sister for a moment, and Newt blinked for a moment before starting.

“Right, I suppose some formal introductions are necessary?” Newt remarked hurriedly. “This is Queenie and Porpentina Goldstein.”

“Tina for short.” The older sister added as Theseus gingerly took her hand and kissed the knuckle, maintaining eye contact, before repeating the same with Queenie.

“Theseus Scamander.” he answered politely with a brilliant smiled, of which Newt rolled his eyes at. Theseus then looked at his brother. “You still haven’t answered me, Newt. Why the hell did you not tell me that you had nearly been arrested?”

“Language, ‘Seus.”

“I’ll show you more than language Newt, so help me-”

“Well you see, circumstances be it as it may, this isn’t exactly my fault.” Newt offered quickly, trying to calm his brother, “It wasn’t my doing at all actually, now that I think about it,” Newt insisted, meeting his brother’s gaze. “Remember that case I mentioned, the one you said to not get involved in? Well there are children missing, but it doesn’t have a clear connection, and they were worried that-”

“Newt,” Theseus interrupted, tapping him beneath the chin to refocus his ramblings. “Your near arrest?”

“Yes. Yes, well, I wasn’t trying to get involved, and was going out for lunch, when Tina found a hippogriff...and...well...” Newt fidgeted, his eyes downcast as he looked at the little girl, whose large green eyes stared upwards at him. “They were just making sure it wasn’t a creature...It was all a big misunderstanding, that’s all...”

“...Newt.” Theseus said, almost in fond exasperation as his younger brother shrugged. “I’m not angry.” Newt looked up, sad eyes that would have made a dog in the pound fall for him, though Theseus merely sighed. “Honest, I’m not.” He stated and the two sisters watched as they held back laughter, before Queenie looked at her scandalized.

“I do not do that.”

“Oh you most certainly do.” Tina muttered, as Theseus clapped his brother on the shoulder.

“Now Baby Brother,” Theseus said with a grin, handing Newt a bottle for Rosalind, who began to reach for it “since you’re the expert on New York, why don’t you show me around?”

“E...expert?? Now hold on-”

“Come on, show me what America can offer. You did say it was considerably more interesting than you expected!”

“Theseus!!”

Queenie giggled as Tina groaned in exasperation.

One Scamander was bad enough…

How much mayhem could two create?



Chapter Text

What the hell was Seraphina thinking, tasking him with watching over Scamander and the two children?

Yes, he had dealt with his nieces and nephews, but this was different!

Scowling, Percival wandered around his place working on the wards so that it wouldn’t try to throw Newt out. The kids would manage fine...he hoped. At least the baby, Rosalind-his mind corrected, would be, since it wasn’t clear if she had magic or not. Credence, in theory, should be alright as he was for all intents and purposes a child. He paused, once again bemoaning silently about what he had done to get himself into this predicament. Was this punishment for what happened a year ago?

Dragging a hand through his hair, he looked up when the doorbell rang. Sighing he went over to the door and after checking the wards and sensing Tristan’s familiar magic signature, opened the door.

“Tris-”

“UNCA P!!”

Percival stumbled a few steps back as three little forms slammed into his legs, all giggling loudly. Automatically he recognized the three children and he looked up at Tristan, who smiled weakly.

“Sorry, they heard that I was coming to visit and well…”

“We decided to come along.” A young woman with short blond hair next to Tristan said and Percival offered a tired smile.

“Livia.”

“Hello Percival.” Livia said with a bright smile, kissing his cheek, before holding up a bag. “Tristan said you needed some baby clothes and items?”

“...yes. I did say that.” He replied, looking at his brother in exasperation, who shrugged.

“Unca P! Look!!” Ansel shouted, pointing at his bottom jaw eyes alight in excitement as Percival bent down and smiled, holding the young boy gently by the jaw, seeing that he had finally grown in all of his teeth and then smirked.

“Well it seems you’re growing up.” He said simply and Ansel beamed with pride, sticking his tongue out at his younger brother, Elliot who simply stuck his tongue out back at him and Percival held back the snort. He looked down when tiny hands gripped his pant leg. Blanche looked up at him, blond hair contrasting violently with her brothers’ dark hair, and blue eyes that were her mother’s.

“Unca P, cookie pwease?” Blanche asked, ignoring her brothers and looking at him expectantly, giving him a look that she knew he couldn’t say no to.

“...Lower shelf, right corner.”

All three kids squealed and raced towards Percival’s kitchen while Tristan glared at him.

“I hate you.”

“Yeah, well you deserved that.”

“How??”

“I said to keep it quiet, not for you to blab to your entire family that I’m having to guard a baby.”

“I didn’t tell anyone outside the family.”

“Tristan.”

“Okay, look, I said I had baby stuff, but do you know how much junk I have in my attic?” Tristan asked blandly. “I have three kids all under the age of five, I try accio anything in there you’d be digging my corpse from an avalanche of baby shit. Besides Livia is the one who marked them.”

Percival inwardly groaned, pinching the bridge of his nose.

“Is there anyone ELSE you told?” He asked sarcastically, but then looked at Tristan when there wasn’t a response. “Tristan?”

“WELL, would you look at the TIME. I must be going and-ghrk!” He was pulled back by the collar, laughing weakly at his brother’s glare. “Ah Percival, it really was fun catching up but I-”

“Who did you tell?”

“Tell??? Now, I didn’t tell anyone anything. Perce...I can’t breathe.” Tristan wheezed as Percival’s grip grew tighter.

“You’re a horrible liar, and it’s a good thing you never joined the auror department. Now who did you-”

“PERCIVAL! MY LITTLE BAMBINOOOOO!!!”

There was silence as the two Graves brothers stood in the hall, Tristan frantically trying to free himself from his brother’s iron grip. Percival then marched into his office, dragging the other man in with him, quickly closing the door behind him.

“You told MA?!?!”

Told is such a strong word...”

“Tristan!!”

“Look, how was I supposed to know that Mama was visiting? Mama does what she wants...and well she overheard.”

“Tristan, the baby is a witness to a crime that I’m watching over. That’s it.”

“Yes, because we all know babies make for excellent witnesses.” Tristan grumbled, “ Look, all I told Mama after she heard me talk about the baby to Livia and proceeded to corner me, was that you were watching over Rosie until MACUSA found suitable guardians for her and that you were-”

“That’s not the point. The point is-”

“The point is Percival, that regardless if I told Mama or not, she would have figured it out when you came up for the Christmas Lunch.”

“Who said I was bringing them?”

“Who are you trying to kid?” Tristan asked with a grin, grunting as Percival jabbed him lightly in the side. Then the two began to shove one another, growing more and more violent with each passing moment. They kept at it until someone cleared their throat and they looked at the door to see a short, plump woman, whose hair was neatly pulled back into a milkmaid braid staring at them.



“Now my babies aren’t fighting are they?” She said, as the two broke apart quickly, things having never changed since they had been kids.

“No, Mama.”

She seemed unconvinced, but smiled regardless and walked over to Percival, clasping his cheeks, giving him a once over.

“You’re too skinny, have you been eating?”

“Yes Mama.” Percival replied with a slight smile, glaring at Tristan as Alma pulled her oldest son back to her, into a tight hug. She apparently sensed it though.

“Now don’t you go and glare at your brother. You know you wouldn’t have been able to hide it.”

“Mama, I was trying to keep it quiet.”

“This is America, darling. Nothing stays quiet.”

“Especially when you have a loud-mouth for a brother.” Percival grumbled and Tristan stuck his tongue out. Alma Graves apparently had enough and both men yelped as she grabbed them by their ears.

“I told you two no fighting.”

“Yes, Mama.” They said simultaneously, Tristan’s arms flailing in pain, and despite his attempts, Percival couldn’t stop a slight stomp of his foot as he bent his head towards the hand to stave off the pain.

“Now Tristan, other than today, you are not to speak about the baby to anyone. If Percival decides it’s alright to say anything, it’s alright, but only at that point. Understood?”

“Loud and clear, Mama! Loud and clear!” Tristan whined and Alma’s eyes slid over to her eldest son.

“And you Percival, be nice to your brother. He’s only trying to help, and don’t scare this Mr. Scamander by being like your father. Merlin knows you have a scowl that’d have a dragon whimpering.”

“Yes, Mama.” Percival muttered, glaring at Tristan who had laughed and was trying to play it off as a cough. After a few moments, she was satisfied and relinquished her hold of their ears. Both men rubbed the assaulted lobe, only glancing towards the doorway when there was a faint knock heard.

“Unca P, the door!!” three voices called out and Percival sighed.

“I’ll be right back.” He muttered and walked out of the office, heading to the front door. He could sense the magic signature, something he had only been introduced to recently and after a moment, opened the door. Scamander glanced at him for a moment, before looking back down at the ground as Credence poked his head out from behind Scamander.

“My brother brought me over here.” He explained and Percival decided to not ask how Theseus had figured out the address, as it would probably cause too much of a headache.

“Yes, Theseus would wouldn’t he. Mr. Scamander-”

“Newt.” The tall man corrected, wincing slightly. “Mr. Scamander is what people call my father, not me.”

Percival glanced at him, opening his mouth to ask then what the hell did people call him at work if he disliked being called by his surname, but some determined footsteps behind him stopped his train of thought.

Percival saw Sca-...Newt...stop mid-step and then try to slowly back away out the door again.

Too late. Glancing back and spotting her, his mother turned the corner and had spotted them and was walking briskly over to him.

“So you must be Mr. Scamander!”

“U-uh, yes?” He squeaked out, looking at Percival, clearly confused. The auror just shrugged helplessly. Intervening against Alma Graves was a losing fight that Percival had no desire meddling in. She seemed to take him in, then Credence, and Percival knew what she was going to say before she even spoke it, and groaned in exasperation.

“Mama-”

“You are much too skinny!!” She exclaimed and Newt blinked in surprise.

“I...Pardon?”

“What is England feeding you? Far too little it would appear.” She muttered and then grabbed his free arm and then pulled Newt into the house, Credence hurrying after him. Percival wondered if it was possible to Avada Kedavra himself, before he closed the door and the clamor inside vanished under the wards.


Newt sighed in relief as he finally made it down the steps into the shed of the suitcase, feeling like his stomach was going to explode if Mrs. Graves hadn’t had to leave for home. The small group that had been in Percival’s kitchen when they had been dragged in had left shortly after the matriarch of the Graves family had begun cooking, offering a sympathetic look at him. One of them had to be related to Graves, he mused. Probably the man since he had said something to Graves as they left, and had earned a punch to the arm by Graves, who then had commented he was going out for a little bit and to not wait up for him.

Strange...but best not pry. Mr. Graves wasn’t all that happy with him being there anyways.

Gently he set Rosalind down on the desk, the little girl looking at him curiously. Pickett squeaked, peeking out of his lapel at the girl.

“Here we go Pickett,” Newt said, lifting the bowtruckle up and onto his head. The tiny creature continued to stare at the little baby, curiously as he took off his coat and began to work with the buttons of his sleeves.

“Mister Scamander…?”

Newt glanced up as he adjusted his cuffs and smiled gently at Credence’s head poking up at the top.

“You can come down if you want.” He called out, and the boy did as he was told, clutching the ladder tightly as he climbed down, jumping the last step and then hurried over to Newt’s side and Newt ruffled the boy’s hair.

“It’s feedin’ time right?” Credence asked and Newt smiled.

“Mhm. It’s a bit later, so Matilda and Eleanor aren’t going to be the happiest, but I’m sure the mooncalves will be excited for their dinner.”

“What ‘bout Rosie though?” Credence asked, glancing at the little baby who was gnawing on a fist, blinking innocently at him.

“Hmm...good question.” He muttered, thinking. Then with a casual flick of his wand, a long, old wrap that he had gotten on one trip to Africa came flying out out of a nearby chest and he snatched it in the air, and began to wrap it around in a similar way that he remembered the women had done in that village. He then picked up the little girl and gently placed her in the cloth. She squirmed a bit, getting settled and Credence scampered over to where he knew the mooncalf feed was.

Newt glanced at her as he followed Credence. She was small. Definitely fragile, and he couldn’t begin to imagine what her mother must have thought as she lay there dying. Whether or not her child would be safe...who would take care of her.

Would she had even been found?

It was pure luck that he had gone that direction, he mused, handing Credence a bucket of food and the boy beamed as they walked over to the mooncalves. Pure, unadulterated luck. If he hadn’t, Rosie chances of survival were slim. She certainly wouldn’t have survived more than a night, that was for sure, given the chill. At least she was safe now, he mused lightly, watching as Credence tossed the pellets in the air lightly, the creatures enthusiastically stretching their necks to get the pellets. One in particular scampered over to him, cooing and nuzzling his leg. He bent down slightly, minding Rosie’s head as the mooncalf-Betsy, he realized- nuzzled her back lightly.

“Gently, Betsy.” He said with a chuckle as Rosie shifted, tiny hands clutching his shirt. Betsy chirped at him, before the sound of Credence shaking the food bucket interested her more and she scampered back to him. Confident Credence could deal with them, Newt grabbed another bucket, heading the nundu enclosure. Matilda growled her discontent, looking at him, before he saw her nose move, scenting the air, clearly confused.

“Hi Mattie…” He cooed softly. “Sorry I’m late with your dinner. Was a smidge busy.”

She stood and plodded over before taking a sniff, almost looking at him quizzically, head cocked to the side. He smiled.

“This is Rosie.” He introduced as Matilda sniffed the tiny foot, poking out of the wrap, tiny toes curling at intrusion. Matilda then sat back, tail flicking as a deep rumble echoed from her throat, almost proud. Newt smirked, before dumping Matilda’s food where she liked to eat, and the nundu went to the food happily. Credence scampered back over to him, beaming brightly, but went shy as he got closer.

“Mooncalves are done, Mister Scamander!!”

“Nicely done, Credence.” Newt said, inwardly sighing. He was still working on Credence not calling him Mister Scamander. Sooner or later he would understand, but he wasn’t going to rush him. “Let’s go see the occamies and Dougal.”

Credence perked up, and nodded happily and taking Newt’s hand began to drag the man towards Dougal’s nest. Even from the distance they could hear the excited chirping.

“Dougal!”

Newt smiled as Credence walked a bit quicker towards where Dougal was, as the demiguise slid out of his nest. Newt released the young boy’s hand to go check on the occamies as Credence went to Dougal. The occamies screeched loudly and Rosie shifted against him, making a soft fussing sound.

“It’s alright, Mummy’s here. Mummy’s here.” He shushed softly. “Everything is alright, darlings.”

“Mister Scamander, are the occamies okay?”

“They’re perfectly alright, Credence. Just a bit annoyed that dinner was delayed and-!” Newt went quiet as Dougal walked over to him, curiosity on his face as he climbed up on Newt, staring over his shoulder at Rosie. The little girl blinked, staring at the demiguise, who then cooed questionably at him. He chuckled.

“Dougal, have I’ve had a day for you.


“So why did you come here?”

Theseus looked up from the file he was reading, cocking his head to the side at Tina Goldstein, leaning against the guest bedroom door.

“Pardon?”

“Did you really come here because of Newt? I mean he’s…”

“Capable, I know. I know.” Theseus remarked with a grin. “But I’m protective of him...so it was only natural to want to come here. But…”

“But?”

“I also wanted to understand why what happened a year ago to Credence, Newt, and to you happened. Wanted to see if Percy was actually alright.”

“You know Mr. Graves well?”

“We met during the war.” Theseus replied with a chuckle. “There was a momentary cease-fire and he had been dragging his team to a healing tent as I was just leaving. I helped him bring in one of the more injured ones...he had been the only one not badly injured, and obviously was worried, though he wouldn’t show that to anyone.”

“Of course not.” Tina muttered with a chuckle, sitting down next to Theseus.

“I sat down next to him while he waited for word on his comrades, and we just talked about our countries, the differences, the similarities.” He explained.

“And that was it?”

“No. We began to be in the same group sent out, given the same missions...it was comforting in some ways. We had each other’s backs against muggles...sorry, no-maj’s...and wizards alike. After the war, and Percival headed back here, we kept in touch. It became harder as time passed and our jobs positions changed, so I wasn’t at first worried when I hadn’t heard anything from Percy for a little bit. But now…”

Tina looked at him and he was staring at a knot on the ground.

“Now I wish I had sensed something was amiss.”

“It wasn’t your fault Mr. Scamander-”

“Theseus.”

“Hm?”

“Just call me Theseus. Mr. Scamander is something that people call my father. Theseus is just fine.”

“Oh...Theseus, then. It wasn’t your fault. Mister Graves...it should have been us to notice something. We work with him the most...but we didn’t question anything. And those who did or could have, were shuffled around. It should have been obvious, but…”

“I doubt he blames you or the department, Ms. Goldstein.” Theseus remarked. “Grindelwald has fooled lesser and smarter men and women before the department, and he probably will keep doing that until he’s stopped.” Theseus said kindly and Tina looked at him, shoulders shuddering for a moment before he gave a gentle smile that had her heart skip a beat.

“I’m glad there are people like you working with Percy, Ms. Goldstein.”

“Tina. Just call me Tina.” She said and blushed slightly when he chuckled, giving her a teasing look.

“Alright, Ms. Tina.”

“That’s not...ugh, you two are most definitely related.” She huffed and he burst out in laughter, to which she eventually gave a small smile and chuckled softly. He calmed down, pushing back his hair for a moment.

“I am truly glad that Percy has people like you working with him, Ms. Tina.” He repeated, looking at her with a smile. “You’re honest. And I can tell you for certain that he likes that in a person. It certainly suits you.”

She blinked. Once. Twice. Then blushed brightly and stood up quickly.

“Well it was nice talking to you. Have a good night!” She exclaimed quickly and hurried out of the room, closing the door quickly on a confused Theseus. She glanced at Queenie who looked amused.

“He was just complimenting you, Teen.”

“Not a word!” She hissed and Queenie giggled, watching her sister hurry to their room, the door closing shut quickly.

Chapter Text



Alma Graves neé Leoni Percival Graves’s mother and matriarch of the Graves family. Born to the Ambassador of the Magical Republic of Italy to the MACUSA and an American witch in New York, she learned at a young age the game of politics. She became influential in politics, and was known to attend parties with dignitaries, though she has a dislike of being in the city for long periods of time. At one such party, she met her future husband Brigham as he was attending the party with his family.She and he married after a few years of courting and soon after had their first child Sebille, followed two years later by Percival and then Tristan and Elaine down the road. Kind-hearted but hard-headed, devoted, and caring; she became a homemaker after Sebille’s birth and doted on her children (calling them her bambinos or bambinas, depending on who she’s talking to), but taught them the importance of self-reliance and always be ready to question what was or wasn’t right. She is known for her cooking and how she runs the Graves’s house, and there are many times that the Graves siblings will come over with their families for dinner. After Percival is found, while she does give him space, she only gives him just enough so she isn’t coddling him (he’s far too prideful for complete coddling...though it was appreciated when he was first found) and contacts him when she can, always asking if he needs any food.

Brigham Graves Percival Graves’s father and patriarch of the Graves family. A retired Senior Auror, he is very quiet and calm, generally the voice of reason in the household when his wife becomes angry. Having met his wife at a party, he became intrigued by her and actively courted her and the attempts was reciprocated by his soon to be wife. Devoted to his family, he can be seen to many as a very strict, straight-laced type of man due to his personality, and many can see his personality ever present in his oldest son. He does have a sense of humor though it is subtle, and is a big fan of the Arthurian Legend, which resulted in all of his children having some sort of name devoted to the Legend of King Arthur. He is proud of Percival for surviving being captured by Grindelwald, but can’t help but feel guilty for not forcing the issue of his son’s sudden change in personality and confronting him over it. He offers advice to his son and if called for, doesn’t mind helping his son on opinions of cases if needed.




Percival Graves: The eldest son of his family, and second child of the Graves Family. Taking after his father in the seriousness department, he wanted nothing more than to follow his father and become an auror. After graduation, he decided to do just that and applied to become an auror. And was admitted quickly after. He rose through the ranks rather quickly, and became the youngest auror to become a Senior Auror, and then the youngest to claim the title of Director. Despite the work put in for his job, he still visited his family and corresponded regularly with them. When he was attacked by Grindelwald, his right leg and arm were destroyed in the duel, enabling the dark wizard to capture and hold him hostage with little worry of him freeing himself. He is discovered a month or so later, barely alive and in much need of help and medical assistance. Despite the injuries, Percival Graves was above all else, stubborn. He began to work himself back to as close as he could from before the attack, gaining a prosthetic arm and leg in the process. He is...quieter than he was before, more wary of his surroundings, but now has to deal with constant visits from his siblings...something that despite his grousing, he can't help but like.



Tristan Graves: The second youngest of the Graves siblings, and the second son of the Graves. Married and with a set of triplets, Tristan is a Legend Tripper, a North American position of researching and evaluating sites of magic and deciding whether or not they can be open to the general public. Similar to an auror, he travels around the country and participates on adventures that can't be explained by no-maj science. He's a very charismatic person, something that is required in his field of work as he has to communicate with everyone, mostly no-maj's that he would later obliviate. He looks up to his older brother, incredibly proud of his accomplishments. During the events involving Grindelwald, the dark wizard had the younger brother set off on a wild goose chase of a legend to keep him out of Grindelwald's hair as he assumed (correctly) that Tristan and the rest of the Graves siblings would have been able to figure it out if they had visited him at all. Despite being charismatic and seen as an overall goofball, he is very serious about keeping his country safe, can be brave if it is needed of him, and is devoted to his family and friends.

Sebille Fontaine neé Graves: The oldest of the the Graves siblings. This usually leads to confusion between her and Percival as she looks incredibly young for her age (42), and is rather attractive. Married and a journalist in Chicago, she lives there rather than in New York, but visits whenever she can due to her closeness of her family. She normally is there to listen to her siblings complaints without so much as an eye roll. A journalist for the North American Wizarding World, people tend to dismiss her as beauty without any brain and spill secrets that she may or may not use if you piss her off enough. The Graves siblings know when someone has rubbed her the wrong way is when an article of an investigation on said person is in the news written by her. Grindelwald only kept conversations short and brief with her when impersonating Percival, unsure if he could give away anything that would tip her off, but in doing so began to give her hints that something wasn't right, especially after he didn't write anything in the Christmas cards he sent to her and her children. After the whole Grindelwald incident and Percival's rescue, she makes it a point to visit her siblings more often rather than wait to hear word from them. Although she seems cool and distant, she is actually known to be selfless and compassionate to her friends and family, brave, quick-witted and intuitive.

Elaine Graves: The youngest and the biggest surprise to the Graves siblings (after Tristan they had decided to not have any more kids. But Elaine would not be stopped). 15 years younger than Percival, and the one that doesn't leave the city as much as her siblings, she and Percival are very close and it's not a very well kept secret that Percival will investigate anyone that is remotely interested in his sister. Kind, motherly, and patient with a large smile, Elaine is a healer at St. Agatha's Medical Clinic and is generally well liked there. Grindelwald actively avoided her at all costs due to Percival's protectiveness over her and their general relationship putting his facade at risk of being discovered, while regularly using her in taunting Percival during his capture, discussing what he planned on doing with her after his usefulness wore off. After Percival is found, Elaine is highly protective of him and helps in his recovery the best she can. Unmarried at the moment, she wants to start a family eventually but hasn't found a suitable partner to start dating (or at least one that wants to risk invoking Percival Graves's wrath)




Livia Graves neé Docker: Livia is Tristan's wife and is happily married to him. She and Tristan were school sweethearts and married soon after graduating, though they decided to hold off on starting a family until they were settled and comfortable in their jobs. An aurologist, she tends to use her abilities to see harmed or damaged auras, and attempts to heal whatever is affected, though she isn't always able to do so. In 1924 she and Tristan became the parents to triplets, 2 boys; Ansel and Elliot, and one girl; Blanche. After such, Livia claimed that if Tristan ever got her pregnant again, his testicles would be coming off. She is a kind, gentle (when not punishing her children...or husband), loving, and very motherly woman. Due to her job, she knows what to do to make a home inviting and, merely being in the same room with her is very reassuring.

Calvin Fontaine: Calvin is Sebille's husband and the currently head of the Fontaine family. Though originally he planned to be an auror, he joined the Wizarding efforts of World War I and was badly injured in a battle and barely survived. Though he did, he was badly scarred as a result. Dating Sebille at the time, he gave her the option to end it, as 'someone as beautiful as her didn't need to be with someone like him'. It's said Sebille merely laughed and to her, he was far from ugly in her eyes. It was at that moment, he realized that she would be the only one he could ever love. Becoming an Arithmancer, he and Sebille reside in Chicago with their two children Frederick and Cora. He is rather quiet and calm, devoted to his wife (and she to him), and constantly worries about her position as an investigative reporter.




Frederick Fontaine: Sebille and Calvin's oldest child. At the tender age of 8, he is known to be running around in the nearby park with his friends. While he loves his sister, they have the normal relationship where she bugs him and he bugs her, but they have each others backs. He's energetic and looks up to his parents and family, generally known for following Percival Graves around when he can. He wants to be an auror, much to his mother's ire.

Cora Fontaine: A six year old girl that looks a lot like her father. A very kind, and energetic girl who is known for getting her dresses dirty by exploring the garden and wanting to plant everything. She's close to her Aunt Elaine, but loves pretty much her entire family (even her icky older brother XD). She doesn't really have an aspirations at the moment but is always changing her idea of what she wants to be when she gets older.




Ansel Graves: The oldest of the triplets, he's much more of the adventurous than his siblings, and reminds the Graves family far too much of his father and they all joke that he is going to become a mini-me version of Tristan. He is a complete mama's boy however and regularly crowds around her, or clings to her wherever they are.

Blanche Graves: The youngest of the triplets, and is a very shy girl, whose more known for hiding her face in any of her relative's leg than say hello to anyone new, though she does warm-up to a newcomer when appropriate. Is closest to her Uncle Percy and she tends to always stay near him when her family visits him (or vice versa). She was one of the first of Percival's nieces and nephews to see him after his capture by Grindelwald and wasn't scared of his injuries.

Elliot Graves: Elliot is the middle of the triplets and is more 'sensible' than his brother, but more outgoing than his sister. Normally following Ansel, the two are thick as thieves and will go on 'adventures' through the house and coming up with stories to tell about what to do. He is a bit more serious than his brother, and tends to hand out with his father when he's able to.

Chapter Text

He was staring at him.

Percival was making sure to not stare at the boy, but Credence certainly was not subtle about looking at him as he read a newspaper. Newt apparently was in his case, making breakfast for both Credence and himself.

“Why waste your food?”

It had almost been insulting, Percival mused, but the man had been insistent on not taking any of his food in his icebox.

“So you’re Mista Graves?”

Percival glanced at Credence finally, looking at the little boy.

“Yes.”

“Oh.”

“Oh?” He asked, dread pooling into his stomach. Mercy Lewis, what did this boy remember? Could he remember how Grindelwald had offered the then older Credence a kind hand, had used him, manipulated him, manipulated an abused boy who wanted nothing more than someone to care about him? All while using his face?

“Well Mista Scamander said that I might remember things here.” He said, before his brow furrowed and he looked at Percival a bit harder. “But I don’t know...have we met before?”

“...perhaps.”

A half-truth.

“Oh. Well it’s really nice meetin you.” Credence said with a smile. Percival hesitated, before sighing.

“It is nice meeting you as well.”

Credence beamed brightly before glancing towards the door as Newt came in, Rosie snoozing in the sling around his chest.

It was all very domestic, Percival mused lightly as Newt placed a bowl of food and a healthy slice of bread, of which Credence began to dig in.

“Sorry if I was a bit slow. Jonathan tried to make another escape from my case.”

“Jonathan?”

Percival shrugged, taking a sip of his coffee.

“It doesn’t matter to me what your schedule is.”

Newt chuckled lightly, and Percival mused that he had a lovely laugh, before inwardly shaking himself and taking another gulp of coffee.

“No, I suppose it doesn’t.”

Percival glanced up at him, as Newt looked away, seeming to glow in the morning light.

Percival looked back down at the paper, taking a sip of his coffee, but for some reason couldn’t seem to get past the first sentence.


Jacob glanced up as he heard the familiar tinkling of the front door’s bell and then a familiar humming. His smile grew as he strode out, pausing when he spotted Queenie, with a small boy latched to her skirt and an infant in her arms.

“And here I thought you and Tina were pulling my leg when you said Newt had found an infant in that campsite.”

“No leg pulling of the sort, Love. Newt just had some business to talk about at the MAC, and he didn’t want to drag these two around.” Queenie replied with a bright smile as Credence pressed his face into her skirt, peeking out shyly to look at him. He bent down, smiling as got to the boy’s level.

“Hello. Credence, was it?”

Shyly, Credence nodded, looking at him and Jacob smiled.

“Hungry?”

Credence looked up at Queenie as though asking for permission and her smile was bright as she nodded. Credence looked back at him and nodded.

“Alright, then.” Jacob said brightly, extending his hand out and slowly, Credence took it and allowed the man to walk him towards the glass case. Credence blinked.

“That looks like Eleanor.” He muttered shyly and Jacob chuckled.

“Yeah…you know...I remember a little of what Newt said about the erumpents, but I can’t remember everything. Anything I should know about?” He asked as Queenie watched, adoration growing on her face as Credence shyly began to talk about erumpents, and she bounced Rosie gently in her arm as the little baby gnawed on her fist.

Such a sad event for a little girl to go through...and all alone too.

She bit her bottom lip. It was similar in so many ways to her any Tina. How one minute their parents were there, the next they weren’t. The next it was just her and Tina struggling through life together. She didn’t know what she would have done without Tina...

“Queenie? You alright?”

She jumped slightly and looked over at Jacob, who was eyeing her in concern as Credence nibbled on an erumpent shaped pastry. She offered a smile.

“Right as rain!”

Jacob didn’t seem convinced, and Queenie felt her smile waver.

“Jacob...what if we had decided to not go exploring the forest?” She asked quietly, sitting down as Rosie babbly lightly in her arms. “What if we had decided to go to Central Park instead?”

“Queenie…”

“Newt says she probably wouldn’t have survived more than a night at most. She would have been dead, just like her parents. And no one would have even noticed.”

“Oh sweetheart…” Jacob said softly, letting Credence’s hand go and going over to her. “But that didn’t happen. See? She’s right here. She’s safe.” She smiled, nodding. There was a brief pause and she glanced at him.

“Want to hold her?”

“Who me? Nah. You look like you’re all comfortable right now.”

“Beautiful actually.”

She glanced up at him as the thought echoed in her mind, her cheeks turning a healthy shade of pink as he grinned and gave a gentle peck on her cheek, a smile on his face as she pressed Rosie to her, wondering if the little girl could feel her heart racing as hard that surely, any harder and her heart was going to race out of her chest.

Horsefeathers.


“Naughty, naughty Percival.” Grindelwald seem to sing, looking at the miniscule fractures around the wards on the door. “I told you to behave.”

Percival gritted his teeth in anger as with a simple wave of the other man’s hand, the cracks he had worked so hard to fix vanished, the area good as new. His hissed sharply as Grindelwald yanked his head up sharply by his hair, and though he tried to glare, but it looked and felt weak.

“And you decided not to. Do I have to take your other arm as well?”

Percival went still as red glowed from the end of his wand...his own DAMN wand. Grindelwald however chuckled, before letting Percival drop to the ground. Percival shook, swallowing down the panic as he glared defiantly at the man.

“Now, how do you obtain particular records from your department?”

“What are you talking about?”

“Records on magical children. Or does the United States not have those?” Grindelwald tutted. “How does your country keep track of everyone then?” Percival remained silent and Grindelwald turned.

“You DO have them.” He said grinning. Again Percival remained quiet before he coughed and warmth slid down his chin. Metallic tasting. Thick.

Blood??

“Now Percy, will you be ever so kind in telling me where those records would be?”

“Fuck you.”

He couldn’t stop the flinch as Grindelwald sighed, couldn’t stop his heart skipping a beat as Grindelwald turned and aimed his wand.

Couldn’t stop the scream as one word was uttered and green filled the room.

“Crucio.”

Percival all but flew up, his throat aching as his chest heaved, forcing air into his lungs. It took him a few minutes to recognize his bedroom. It took another few minutes to hear the familiar buzzing of the spells surrounding the walls of it.

Silencing charms, intertwined with muffling wards surrounded the walls. He wasn’t about to have his ‘guests’ in his household overhear his nightmares.

He was Percival Graves. He was in his home. He was safe.

He kept repeating the mantra, but as his heart slowed back to a normal rhythm, he slowly became aware of something, barely audible shifting around near his dresser. His head snapped up, eyes roving around and he saw a shape shifting around. Slowly he reached for his wand.

“Aresto Momentum!”

He didn’t really know why of all the spells, that one he chose. It did the trick as the creature was suddenly floating in the air.

“What the hell are you?” He muttered, flicking his hand up as the creature chittered and chirped in protest. He dimly heard footsteps rushing down the hall and was about to drop the creature to grab his wand when the door opened and Newt stood there, diving and grabbing the creature that had begun falling.

“Jonathon! Bloody hell you can’t wander off!!” Newt hissed out, standing up as the creature squirmed, raised his hands to look at the creature, who froze, staring back at him like a deer caught in headlights. “I told you to behave and that it was off-limits up here!” Newt continued to scold. “Empty your pockets. Out. What did you take?”

The niffler wriggled in his grip, protesting and Newt sighed in exasperation.

“I’m so sorry, Mr. Graves,” he said as he looked up, “he’s a bit of a troublemaker, I’m afraid. Always getting into places he doesn’t...belong…” He trailed off as he finally focused at the other man.

Percival stared at Newt, who was looking at his arm and leg in surprise, and he felt as though he was suddenly incapable to breathe, as though the air had been sucked out of the room.

“O-Oh sorry. I…” Newt trailed off, staring at the creature in his other hand, who was blinking innocently towards him.

“Mr. Scamander...I would like if you knocked on my door from now on.” He said slowly, his voice cooled as he pushed back the sudden knot in his throat.

“I uh...yes. Of course. Sorry, so sorry.”

He ducked down, looking at the creature who was blinking innocently in his arms. He glared at the creature, glancing him again for a brief moment, before looking away, his Adam’s apple bobbing violently as he began to back out slowly, trying to look anywhere but him.

“So, so sorry. Again.”

The door shut quickly.

And Percival slumped backwards into his bed, muttering a string of curses under his breath.




Tina sighed in exasperation as she looked at her report once again. If there was one thing that she hated in her job, it was the godforsaken reports.

She tapped a finger on her cheek as her gaze shifted to the small pile of photos, some moving, some not.

All of them children missing.

She couldn’t even begin to imagine what the parents were going through. Yes, from what she had seen, some of the parents weren’t probably the best, and some families weren’t in the best of situations, but they had all been worried sick of where their children were. It was heartbreaking to see the parents come in every other day or sometimes every day to see if there was any news about them.

Vaguely she couldn’t help but agree that out of all the assignments any of them assigned...those of children; missing or otherwise, were always the hardest to deal with.

“Hiya Missus Tina!”

She jumped slightly and looked to the edge of her desk and smiled as Credence’s bright expression peered up from the edge.

“Hello Credence. Where’s Newt?”

“He went to go talk to Mister Graves.”

Well that was...strange.

Mr. Graves had been rather somber and moody getting to work today, barely letting anyone in his office before he slammed the door shut and basically had holed himself up in the office. But true to form, she looked up just in time to see the office door close.

“Is Rosie with him?”

“Mhm. She’s being all fussy.” He explained. “And she likes it when she’s close to Mister Scamander.”

“Is that so?”

“Mhm.” Credence said, beaming. “But she likes when I pick her up!!”

Tina couldn’t help the smile.

“Does she now?”

“Yeah. She always starts babbling. It’s really cute.” Credence explained and began to talk hurriedly about the little girl, gushing over her as Tina set her quill down and listened. Vaguely she wondered if some part of him was remembering Modesty through Rosalind. There were some similarities, physical at least, and from what she had remembered Modesty and Credence had been close, the former protective over the latter and to some extent the latter over the former.
He had to have been close to her...seeing as she had been the only one to survive last year, and was placed in a magic foster family on the West Coast for her safety. She wondered what would happen if the two were to meet again...would Credence or Modesty even recognize one another? Or-

“-ina?”

“Hm? Sorry!” She said hurriedly, blinking at Credence. “What’d you say?”

“Do you think it’s okay that I help?” He asked and she blinked in surprise. He was almost shy about it, looking down at the floor as though preparing himself to be scolded for asking such a question. She knelt down in front of him and lifted his head lightly with a hand.

“I think Newt is lucky to have such a wonderful helper.” She said gently and Credence beamed.

“Really?”

“Really. How about this. It’s about time for my lunch break. Why don’t you go ask Newt if I can take you to Central Park for a hotdog?”
“Okay! I got to ask him to take me to the bathroom first, though. Be right back!” He chirped and scampered over towards Graves’s office.




He had avoided Newt since the night before, unable or rather unwilling to face him. He didn’t want to go and see that man give him looks of pity, guilt, or revulsion. He had had enough of those damn looks when he had returned to work. He didn’t need someone that wasn’t even an employee of the MACUSA doing the same.
In hindsight, he knew it was going to happen sooner or later, since the two were now forced in the same living space. But he would have rathered have explained what happened, than Newt seeing it just...there.

And he might have well thrown a curse at the man. How was he-

A soft knock on the door.

“Who is it?”

“Erm...Newt…?”

He paused in his writing, blinking, before opening his door with a flick of his hand. He didn’t bother looking up as footsteps entered the room. Didn’t look up as the door closed quietly. He only looked up when a pale freckled hand gently set a pocketwatch down.

“Sorry...Jonathan is a niffler. Quite the kleptomaniac...even for a niffler. I found him when he was quite young, so I don’t think the natural self-preservation instincts ever really fully developed.”

Percival was silent and Newt stammered through, trying to push on through. “I...also want to apologize barging into your room...last night. I was just worried, Jonathan has a tendency to snatch anything that he finds shiny and then he tries to take as much as he can. Didn’t really want him robbing you blind. Already had that issue last year.”

“Mr. Scamander...Newt.” Percival corrected as Newt looked down, “it’s fine.”

“Oh that’s good...wonderful.”

“I however don’t really have any excuse of not telling you about...well…” he trailed off, glancing at his arm and his leg felt heavy today. “My apologies on that.”
Something seemed to click in newt’s mind.

“Wait? You think…” Newt trailed off and then shook his head vigorously, eyes wide, “I don’t think of you any less, Mr. Graves.” Newt exclaimed hurriedly. “Far from it actually. It’s rather courageous and shows your strength to well...survive such a thing…and to be walking after only a year...”

“...thank you.” Percival said, blinking several times.

“Do you perhaps have an idea on whether they would be able to make a creature type of prosthetic?”

“Mr. Scaman...Newt…” Percival corrected himself, his voice sounding even to him as one of fond exasperation.

“I have a mooncalf who lost one of her legs in a hunters trap. She gets by on three legs, but it’s a struggle and-”

“Mister Scamander?”

They both glanced at the door to see Credence poking his head in.

“Credence, everything alright?"

“Well…” Credence murmured, looking at Newt and it was only when the man bent down did the little boy begin to whisper. Newt blinked and then looked at Percival.

“Ah...could you watch Rosie for a moment? Credence needs to...relieve himself…” Newt said nervously and Percival looked at him.

“Mr. Sca-Newt, I don’t-”

Credence tugged on his hand a bit more urgently. Newt apparently took that as the deal-breaker and set Rosie down in a conjured baby lounger.

“Great, thanks! We’ll be back in a jiffy!”

“Mr. Scamander-! Newt!”

The door closed, and Percival sighed, holding back the curses that wanted to escape. There was silence for a moment, then a content gurgle. He stared at Rosalind, whose tiny feet kicked at the air as she stared back in an old baby lounger, blinking.

“What?” He asked her and she cooed at him after a moment, a toothless smile growing on her face. He fought against the smile, before he glanced up at the door as it opened without a knock and Elaine blinked a bit as she spotted the baby, a smile growing on her face.

His expression became a frown.

“Don’t. Ask.”

“Didn’t even cross my mind.” Elaine teased with a chuckle, earning a glare from her older brother as she closed the door. “Tristan had to go home early. Apparently Elliot and Ansel are sick and Livia’s a bit overwhelmed. So I’m bringing lunch.” Elaine explained, handing him some lunch.

“Pity for him. But you know, I’m 40. Perfectly capable of getting my own lunch.” He said half-heartedly, as he glanced into the bag. She rolled her eyes.

“Please, we wouldn’t even see you out of the office if you were given the choice.” She joked and he chuckled dryly. Rosalind took the opportunity to let out a squeal and Elaine smiled over at her.

“Well aren’t you a cutie?” She cooed going over to the girl and picking her up. Percival grumbled under his breath.

“What has you out of sorts?”

“You’re not getting attached are you?”

“She is rather cute.” Elaine remarked, smiling as Rosalind waved her tiny hands at her. Percival sighed, rubbing the bridge of his nose. “I don’t know why you’re so upset about this. I know for a fact that, contrary to the popular belief, you actually don’t mind children.”

“I’ve been practically demoted to babysitting, Elli. Literally. Wouldn’t you be upset if you were Director of Magical Security and then have to do babysitting?”
Elaine chuckled.

“You always were the cynical one of the family. Maybe it’s because Madame President trusts you the most at the moment.”

“What is that supposed to mean?”

“You know there have been whispers and gossip of possible followers or sympathizers of Grindelwald still infiltrating the MACUSA ever since last year, and they haven’t diminished. If Rosalind’s parents were murdered because of him, what would stop a follower from killing a family, or worse the MACUSA giving her to a follower who would just go about killing her? At least Madame President knows that you have the least amount of reason to ever join Grindelwald. Besides, it’s not like she doesn’t know about our family, and how protective you are of everyone in there. Especially the younger ones.”

“Scamander-”

“Newt. Newt, is not accustomed to our laws and society here, Percy. His brother does have a point that he seems to take guardianship of a baby with stride, and with what happened last year capable of protecting himself when necessary, but you at least know when and where using magic is better suited than him. And if you make a mention of the Credence boy, need I remind you that you felt guilty afterwards when we told you what happened with him and how long it took for us to convince you it wasn’t your fault? He seems shy around you, but pretty willing to get to know the actual you, considering the last time he saw ‘you’, things had gone horribly wrong.” She added and smirked when she heard an audible jaw click.

“...How do you even do that?”

She chuckled and looked at him.

“One of us has to have Sebille’s brand of wisdom.”

He snorted lightly, and she smiled at him gently, standing up and cradling Rosalind in her arms.

“I stand by what I said, Percy. Stop over worrying and you’ll be fine.”

He sighed, only to look up when there was a knock on the door.

“Come in.” He called out and Elaine began to head out, but paused, blinking several times as she stared at the door, a look of worry growing.

“Elaine?” He began, wondering what she could sense that he couldn’t, but stopped when the door opened and a grim looking Jackson O’Reily came in. Percival felt dread pool in his stomach. This couldn’t be good.

His instincts were correct.

“A body was found, Director. Of a child.”

No. It definitely wasn’t good.

Chapter Text

“I wish this was under better circumstances.” Gamblesby said, his voice quiet and somber as he glanced at the small form hidden under a sheet. Percival was quiet, his jaw set, while Tina looked like she was going to be sick.

He couldn’t blame her.

“I looked at the children photos ahead of time, Director. Aaren Elwood, half-blood, four years old and found under a bridge.”

“Cause of death?”

“It’s not the killing curse or a spell, small mercies, I suppose...but seems like his neck was broken.”

“They broke his neck??” Tina managed, her eyes almost owlish.

“I can’t be sure if it was whoever was holding him captive did or if it was accidental.” Gamblesby remarked, moving the sheet down to expose the face. If it was in any other situation, the boy would look like he was merely asleep.

But this was a type of sleep he could never awaken from.

Percival stared at the body, unable to wrench the idea that this could easily have been Elliot, Ansel, Blanche...could easily have been Frederick or Cora. He swallowed roughly, forcing those thoughts out of his mind, tuning back into Gamblesby.

“...strange really. The way he was placed wasn’t what I would expect.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well he wasn’t just, discarded. He had been wrapped in a blanket and placed in an area where strays wouldn’t get to him. Made comfortable. All things considered, a passerby probably just assumed it was an orphaned boy asleep. That’s not even counting that despite being dirty, he was actually well fed and didn’t have a whole lot of injuries. All signs of someone akin to a mother would do for a child.”

“So he was cared for, wherever he was.”

“In a way. But then there are the injuries, completely opposite to those signs There are bruises and evidence that he mean he was struck, but I can’t be sure.”

“How can you not be sure?”

Gamblesby glanced up at Percival, then shifted the blanket a bit further and Tina looked away for a moment, but forced herself to look as Gamblesby pointed to faded bruises.

“These are in the beginning stages, but are already faded.”

“Evidence of healing?”

“Exactly. Likely bruising salve. Applied. So one of two things. One; the person behind this is playing with them, torturing their minds by acting all caring and then harming them. Or there’s more than one involved in this, and one is kinder than the others.”

Percival frowned, looking at the little boy again.

“Send the report to my office…” He said softly.

“Can do, Director. For what it’s worth, I’m sorry…”

“So am I.”

Tina looked away as Gamblesby covered the boy with a sheet.

They had been too late.

And now a little boy was gone.

The guilt flooded her and she felt numb.

So numb.


New York was lively, busy, Theseus decided. Also it stank.

Not saying London didn’t stink either. Bloody hell, London stank. If you lived in the city, the idea of not choking on coal smoke was laughable.

But New York?

God Almighty, there was a stench all it’s own there.

Scratching his neck, he glanced at the letter on his lap, sighing to himself. His grandmother was persistent, he’d give her that.

“Theseus, come home and meet this lovely lady. She’s from the Black family and blah, blah, blah.” He muttered, folding it back up and shoving it into his pocket. In some ways he knew he was being unfair. His grandmother was just worried, a part of him argued, didn’t want him to spend his time alone.

Another part, the stronger part of him, laughed at that.

Sure. If that was true, why didn’t she send any of those letters to Newt? Excuses that finding him was difficult aside, he knew that it was for the sole reason that his paternal grandmother disliked Newt. Disliked his personality, disliked that he had been expelled from Hogwarts, embarrassed as though no one had ever been expelled before and as though it had been his fault, disliked his profession...that was the reason she ignored Newt, always talking about how Newt wasn’t at all like Theseus and how Newt should be more like him. If the old hag really cared about him, then she would love both of her grandsons. Not the one who looked more like her son.

And to hell he was going to listen to her. He wasn’t going to marry some lady his grandmother knew. His father hadn’t, why should he?

He would find someone on his own time and his own w-

He glanced up when he heard the door open and then close, cocking his head curiously as he heard footsteps walk in.

Queenie gasped.

“Oh...oh Teen.”

“Not now, Queenie...okay?”

“Alright…” She murmured and Theseus exited the room, just in time to see Queenie draw her older sister into a hug.

“It wasn’t your fault, Teen.”

Tina, strangely was quiet, and after returning the hug made her way to the table and slumped into a chair, Queenie going to the kitchen and brewing some coffee.

“Bad day?”

“A...victim of my case was found.”

Theseus froze and then looked at Tina and saw she wasn’t looking at him, instead staring at the floor.

“Oh...Ms. Goldstein, I’m so sorry.”

“Why are you apologizing? It’s not your fault.”

“It’s not yours either…”

“If we had been quicker-”

“No. Ms. Goldstein...Tina,” he said and she looked at him, eyes glassy, “this is not your fault. Whoever had him is at fault. Not you.”

“He was only four years old. The coroner thinks his neck was broken.”

Theseus winced.

“Children...children are always the hardest cases.” He admitted. “Those are the ones that stick with you.”

“Does it get any better with time?”

“If it ever does, I’ll let you know.” He said softly.

She grimaced, looking at the table as the pair sat there in silence.

“You’ll get them.”

“You sound so sure.”

“Because I am.” Theseus said. “I’ve been on missions before, and will be on missions after. But I do know one thing, with you and Percival on the case, you’ll figure it out.”

Tina offered a tired smile.

“Thanks.”

“Never a problem.”

“So...after?”

“Johaan and Monika are still my case. I’ve found them yes, but I need to know what got them killed and who. Already put in a request for the time. And found a hotel that’s cheap.”

“You didn’t have to do that.”

“I don’t mind...can’t be a freeloader here, and besides you said that your landlady doesn’t allow men. So I’d need to stay somewhere else until my case is solved.”

Tina blinked for several moments and then smiled slightly.

“Is this actually for your case, or to watch over Newt?”

“You were with him for a few days last year, what do you think?”

Tina chuckled, taking a sip of her coffee. He watched her with a fond smile. Neither noticed Queenie glance at them and then away, holding back the smile that yearned to come out.


“And then Miss Tina was gonna take me out for hotdogs, but she got busy.” Credence said, grabbing a plant and walking back over to Newt. Newt frowned and remained quiet. He knew the reason, but Credence...Credence was far too young for that.

“Sooner or later, he’ll have to grow up…” A voice softly whispered in the back of his mind, but he shook his head in defiance.

“I’m certain that next time you visit, she’ll gladly take you out for a hotdog.”

“You think?” Credence asked, beaming. Newt smiled and ruffled his hair.

“I believe so…”

Credence beamed brightly and scampered out of the shed to go feed the mooncalves. Newt glanced back towards the entrance of the suitcase as he exited the shed as well.

Graves had been quiet throughout dinner, though he couldn’t really blame the man. One large contrast that he noticed was the real Percival Graves took his cases to heart, took the victims that couldn’t be saved as a personal failure. While Grindelwald had seemed to have a little regard for human life if it got in his way or if it wasn’t involved in his quest, Percival Graves seemed to try whenever he could to save it and prevent death.

Honestly, it was a wonder why no one hadn’t noticed when Grindelwald had taken over.

Newt paused for a moment, staring out into the expanse of his case, frowning as his heart seemed to skip a beat. Strange. Maybe he put too much sugar in his tea?

Or...

He swallowed and shook his head, brushing a hand through his hair.

No.

People found him rather annoying, so it wasn't possible for anyone to return feelings for him. So why he was getting his hopes up for a man named after an Arthurian knight was beyond explanation. Men named after Knights of the Round Table fell in love with graceful damsels.

And he wasn't a damsel and was far from graceful.

He swallowed and looked away, instead focusing on mixing the food for Matilda and Sally.

Ridiculous.

Absolutely ridiculous.


“Such a large family Percival. It’s a wonder how you manage.”

Percival kept glaring at his carpet, watching as the blood that dripped lazily down his chin stained it.

“Your older sister I don’t have to worry much about. Just keep writing to her and feed that ego of hers, hm? An investigative reporter. I wonder, did you ever feed her information on cases?”

Again he remained quiet.

“And your mother...well she doesn’t like the city all that much, does she? And your father stays with her because she gets ‘lonely’. Pathetic really.”

This time, Percival looked up and glared darkly at him, biting back his retort.

“Now Tristan...hhmmm...he’ll be a bit tougher to keep away.” Grindelwald remarked, tapping his wand lightly as though thinking about it and Percival’s heart skittered. “He has a small family doesn’t he? A lovely little wife, and three ‘adorable’ children.”

“Don’t.” He ground out, desperate. He knew his brother and his wife. Knew that they would sooner lay down their lives before letting their children be harmed.

And he knew Grindelwald wouldn’t care if they died.

“Don’t you worry Graves, I have no desire to attract undue attention to myself. Yet, that is. He’ll stay for the moment.”

Percival’s head dropped forward, exhausted.

“But Elaine…”

His heart seemed to skip a beat this time, and his breath wavered for a moment.

“Pretty Elaine. Quite young, and I’m sure a surprise to the family, given the age difference.”

“Leave her out of this.”

“Ooh, so protective. She must be your favorite sibling.”

Percival glared at Grindelwald, who chuckled.

“Tell me Percival, how surprised would she be if her darling older brother came for a surprise visit? Hm?”

He kept quiet, swallowing roughly.

“Oh that’s right...she’s a little empath isn’t she? She’s the most dangerous out of your little family, isn’t she? She’d probably figure who I am before I even so much as took my shoes off. But perhaps that’d make it interesting. Maybe I should send some of my men to her. A little present from her big brother?”

“Don’t.”

“Or maybe something different, then? Imagine how much fun I’d get with her, wearing your face and doing unspeakable things to her.”

He struggled to sit up, his vision red as Grindelwald just watched, likely amused at his attempts to move with only two limbs.

“If you even TOUCH her-”

A chuckle and Grindelwald grabbed his chin and held it up.

“I never thought the stoic Percival Graves cared so much for his family’s safety. I’d say I’m impressed at you having such a weakness.”

Percival shook his head, vision spinning.

“...I suppose I’ll have her transferred then.” He stated pleasantly as though he wasn’t even there, and Percival swallowed roughly, wondering what type of game Grindelwald was playing. “Can’t have such a talented witch go to waste hm? Besides, she makes an excellent little shield against you.”

“Fuck...you…”

“Now, now. What did I say about cursing?”

A glow began to fill the room and Percival barely had time to figure out what was happening, before his screams filled the air.

Percival barely managed to not topple backwards out of his chair as he jumped backwards. He panted, eyes darting around before realizing he was in his office at home. He rubbed his head, exhaling slowly as he worked to calm himself. At least he hadn’t yelled.

That was the last thing he needed.

He glanced at the file that had been open and read through multiple times already. His throat ached and his shoulders felt heavy as he remembered earlier that day.

If there was one thing that was never easy and he would never get over, it was the cries of an anguished mother. It came with the job, he knew that. But...telling the families that their loved one was never coming home was something that never got easier. And Aaren’s mother was no exception, screaming as though someone had just torn her heart out.

He returned to the real world, realizing he had read the same line over and over again without making sense of it when he heard a semi-loud whine come from down the hall.

Rosalind apparently was awake.

Easily he could call out to Newt in his case that Rosalind was fussing. But…

Sighing, he got up and went down the hall into the small bedroom. After practically vaulting over an extra cot, somehow by the grace of God not awakening an asleep Credence who was curled up in the bed, and avoiding falling into the case that Newt’s creatures were in, he peered over the crib edge. Rosalind kept making crying sounds, squirming around, growing louder with each unanswered call.

“Now what has you all upset?” He said gently and she paused in her fussing for a brief moment, before whining even louder, stretching up towards him. He sighed, almost in exasperation, before reaching and picking her up.

“At least you weren’t like Ansel or Elliot. Those two would have been bawling right now.”

She squirmed in his grip, whimpering growing in prominence.

“So what’s eating you?” He asked in a whisper as he maneuvered out of the room as though Rosalind could answer, “I know Newt fed you an hour ago, so you can’t be hungry. And it’s far too early for a diaper change. So what-”

Tiny hands wrapped around his finger and he looked down at her in surprise. Her eyes were still glassy, the threat of tears still obvious, but now she was far more interested in his hand. Something in his chest seemed to relax and loosen as he watched her take interest in his fingers.

“Lonely, I suppose.” He said and she cooed softly, almost as though in agreement. Sighing, and figuring she would start crying again the moment he put her down, walked back to his sofa and settled using one hand to grab Aaren’s file, bouncing Rosalind lightly with the other. She let out a yawn, content now and snuggled into his side, still clutching his finger, and he felt his heart melt a bit.

Dammit, Elaine was right. He was a sucker for kids.

Sighing, he went back to reading. He didn’t know how long they were like that when Newt came out of his room, confusion on his face.

“Have you seen-”

“Rosalind’s right here. She was starting to fuss and I didn’t want to try to find you in that case in the off chance you were busy.”

To his surprise, however, Newt seemed to stare at him in shock, cocking his head to the side in a curious manner, and for some reason Percival couldn’t help but feel a slight ache in his chest seeming to grow as Newt looked at him fully.


“You...” Newt finally breathed, looking at the now sleeping girl who curled up further in Graves’s grip. “I’m surprised...”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Don’t misunderstand, I’m not suggesting that you wouldn’t know how,” Newt explained quickly, sitting next to him, “just that I’ve met people who don’t really know how to hold a child, especially an infant. And usually they panic at the mere thought.”

Graves chuckled under his breath.

“My youngest sister was born when I had just turned fifteen, my brother had triplets three years ago, and my older sister has two children of her own. I’ve had practice.”

“I see. You’re the second youngest?”

“Second oldest actually. I have an older sister, Sebille, as well as Tristan and Elaine, both who are younger than me. Tristan by five, Elaine by, well...like I said, fifteen.” Percival remarked.

“Your older sister?”

“Sebille is a journalist in Chicago, so she can only visit once in awhile. Tristan and Elaine live in the city, but Tristan is a Legend Tripper so he has to travel a lot, and Elaine is well...Elaine.”

There was a brief moment of silence, and possibly Graves could sense the question that yearned to be asked...how had they not noticed, and Graves sighed.

“Grindelwald had Elaine transferred temporarily to a clinic in California which was revoked after it was discovered that Grindelwald was impersonating me, but I could not have been more relieved for him to have transferred her as far away as possible.”

“Really?”

He watched as the dark haired man smiled forlornly.

“She’s got too kind of a heart. She’s a big girl, I know that. But sometimes I can’t get the image of her being two and running up to me on Christmas break when I got back from school. I don’t want her to go through any type of pain and I don’t like it when she does.”

“She just wants to help.” Newt offered.

“That’s the problem. She can help those she can and offer comfort those she can’t. But seeing the very lowest of human nature is something I don’t want her to witness. It scared the hell out of me when Grindelwald was acting as me...” he trailed off, shaking his head, “she’s my little sister. I don’t...”

“What about Tristan then?” Newt asked, changing the attention to a different sibling and Graves snorted.

“...He gave Tristan the runaround on a case of his when he was impersonating me, having his followers put clues all over the country. His department were panicking at the idea of trying to figure out a legend on the clues they were getting because of it. And he just told my parents that the case I was time-consuming so he wouldn’t be able to visit them, and he wrote to Sebille like I usually did...stupid on his part.”

“Is that right?”

“With Tristan and Elaine, he manipulated their jobs. But with my parents and older sister? I never just send a birthday or holiday card to any of my nephews or nieces without a little personal note in it. Grindelwald only sent Sebille a Christmas card with my name in it. He didn’t even use the stupid nickname Sebille gave me. And I never turn down one of Ma’s meals, even if I’m on a stressful case. I would have given it another missed meal before Ma came storming into the department and dragging Grindelwald out by the ear. That would have been interesting.”

“Oh.”

There was an uneasy silence.

“...that’s why you’re so worried about this case. It’s because of them?”

“Moreso my nieces and nephews. Ansel, Elliot, and Blanche are about to turn four, Cora is six, and Frederick is eight…” Graves explained, his grip tightening a bit on the snoozing Rosalind, “ If it is Grindelwald who's behind this...”

“Graves…”

What was he going to say to that? Not to worry? Children were vanishing for no reason and there were five children in his family, none over the age of ten. If Theseus had children and similar events were happening where they lived, he’d be worried as well.

“...can you explain what a legend tripper is?” He finally asked. Graves glanced over at Newt and regarded him for a moment, but took the question for what it was.

“England not have those?”

“Not that I’ve heard of. Unless it’s just a position with a different name.”

“They’re in charge of researching and evaluating sites of magic, nesting grounds of creatures, wards, and so forth.” Graves replied after some thought. “If there’s a legend made by no-maj’s of those sites, it’s Tristan’s job to ‘trip’ the legend and see if it’s anything that would expose the community and how badly it would do so.”

“Is that right?”

“He didn’t want to be an auror. Said it would drive people up a wall to have two Graves in the same department. And he has more of an imagination, according to him, so being a Legend Tripper suits him.”

“What type of stories do they do?”

“The Jersey Devil is a popular one for them to remind all of us about, just ask them.” Graves explained with a chuckle. “Though I doubt they would have been able to come up with anything big enough for a legend out of last year.”

Newt flushed and cleared his throat, watching as Rosie squirmed, letting out a slight whine of discontent as Graves shifted. Something warmed in his chest as Graves moved, maneuvering Rosie to a more comfortable position, the little girl beginning to suckle on her fist; large eyes half-lidded with sleep as Graves looked back at him, and he looked away, sure that he was blushing.

“What about you?”


Newt’s gaze returned to him for a split moment, before focusing on Rosalind and the British man shifted, uneasily almost.

“Pardon?”

“Your family.” Percival clarified. “Any other siblings my department is going to have to worry about?”

“Oh, heavens no,” Newt replied with a slight chuckle, “no, it’s just Theseus and me. Mum wanted to have another, but was advised against it.”

“Really?”

“Mhm...actually...one moment.” He said and then Percival watched as he fiddled with something in his pocket before pulling out and opening a very worn looking journal, the spine looking about ready to snap in half. Slowly, gently, he pulled out a photograph and then showed it to him.

“See? This is Theseus’s and my parents. My mother, Alexandra, and my father, Sergius.”



Newt looked profoundly like his mother, Percival mused as he looked at the photo. There were certainly features that he shared with his father, broad shoulders being the easiest to spot, but he could easily spot more than one similarity between Newt and his mother. Even though she was sitting down, she was obviously a tall woman. Dreamy, gentle eyes stared at the picture, a soft smile was on her freckled face, and her frame was so skinny, so waifish, he wondered how she of all people bred hippogriffs for a living. There was a similarity in their smile, the curve of their cheek. While Theseus clearly took after his father, Newt was all his mother’s.

“You look remarkably like your mother.” He said before he could stop himself, but Newt seemed to beam at that.

“A lot of people have told me that.” He admitted. “Not that I mind.”

“Close to your mother?”

“Mhm. I clung to her skirts when I was younger, and aided in her helping the hippogriffs that she had at our home. She’s the one who got me interested in creatures in the first place and how they should be treated not how they are treated. Once she had been given a hippogriff that had been found in a raid.” He said almost as an afterthought. “Obviously horribly abused and barely trusted humans at that point. They would have had to put her down, but Mum sat in the same stall with her for nearly two days until the hippogriff began to grow comfortable with her and let her examine her.”

“Is that right?”

“Mhm. Father wasn’t the happiest since she was pregnant with me at the time, but she was adamant that the hippogriff deserved a chance.”

“Like mother, like son, I suppose.” Percival mused as Newt kept talking about the hippogriffs his mother housed, animatedly, describing the barns that the hippogriffs stayed in. They stayed like that for what could have been hours, honestly both men lost track of time.

Soon though, a smell that began to permeate the air, followed by unhappy crying from the infant in Percival’s arms, an indicator of what had happened and Newt smiled gently, taking Rosalind from Percival’s arms.

It felt strangely...empty now, Percival realized slowly as he stretched out his arm.

He watched as Newt cooed at the baby girl, shushing her gently and he couldn’t help but admit that Theseus may have been correct on Newt being a good guardian for Rosalind.

Chapter Text

The discovery of Aaren’s body seemed to be a precursor to how bad the week was going to be. And like the weather which was growing darker and cloudier with the threat of snow, his mood and the week grew worse and worse. It was natural, he had been told many times after he had been found...perfectly natural that there would be good days and bad days involving his recovery.

But the bad days...the bad days were something different entirely. And by Friday, he didn’t want to leave his bed, didn’t want to go to work. But staying in bed, curled up in a little ball, didn’t solve cases and reunite the remaining children with their parents. So he dragged himself out of bed, and stumbled towards the adjoining bathroom, the beginnings of a headache already making itself known. He tried to avoid looking at the mirror as much as he could, but he couldn’t avoid it forever as he needed to straighten his hair.

He barely recognized himself as he stared at the face in the mirror, before sighing and pushing his hair back and working it to where it was presentable.

Mercy Lewis, he had barely slept a wink.

But work was work, and he couldn’t afford to miss it.

As he turned back around to collect his shirt, he spotted the scar on his back.

As if Grindelwald hadn’t humiliated him enough by destroying his arm and leg, he had to go one step further and carve his ‘signature’ into him, a reminder. A claim.

"You're mine, Percival."

He looked away from the mirror as Grindelwald’s taunting laugh echoed softly in his mind and he pulled on his shirt. He gritted his teeth and tugged the shirt on, before pulling on his prosthetic arm, and quickly exiting his room.

He didn’t want to be there a moment longer.




“Percival, Percival...do calm down will you? If all goes well, you can have your life back by Christmas. Just in time for that Christmas lunch that your family has every year, hm?”
Percival didn’t respond, just staring blankly at the ground in front of him, only looking up when a hand forced his head up and he stared into a heterochromiac set of eyes. Grindelwald smiled.

“But I suppose it doesn’t really matter? You-”

“I probably should be worried that you didn’t even hear me come in, shouldn’t I?”

He snapped back awake with a slight jump as Elaine closed the door behind her and she took in his state.

“You look horrible.”

“Thanks for that.” Percival snapped at her, though she didn’t seem bothered by it, instead putting her hands on her hips and looking around.

Percy...I think-”

“No.”

“You need to slow down. This case is burning you out.”

“I’m fine.”

“No. You aren’t. You need to talk to someone, Percival. I’m not meaning physical help or therapy, but someone to actually help you mentally. It might be beneficial to see-”

“No. Everyone is already watching to see if I crumble any further.”

“And you will if you can’t get a decent amount of sleep. Not just cat naps here or there, when you can. That’s not healthy.”

“I can deal with this on my own, Elaine.”

“It’s not a weakness to ask for help, Percy.” She said gently and he glared at her.

“I said no.”

“You put up silencing charms.” She muttered.

“What of them?”

“The fact that you put silencing charms up in here, means the nightmares aren’t getting better and is proof enough you aren’t doing well, Percy. You aren’t going to be helping anyone if you haven’t slept at all.” Elaine said evenly, watching as he struggled to unbutton his sleeves.

“I don’t need your help.”

“I beg to differ.”

“Elaine-”

“Why is it so difficult for you to ask for help?!” She snapped, pushing her hair behind her ear. “I’m not saying these things as a healer, which by the way I am, but as your sister and family member!”

“...Some family member you are.”

Excuse me?” Elaine snapped, her eyes narrowing in anger.

And like a twig the pent up rage snapped.

“You’re not deaf.” He growled out.

“Percival, don’t.”

“Don’t what?”

“Don’t go blaming your behavior right now on me. I’m trying to help. We all have, but you just tell us you're fine, when you're clearly aren't!”

“Oh yes clearly you all were helping me. Clearly you are a big fucking help!”

“You-”

“Tristan had an excuse, Elaine! Sebille had excuse! Ma and Pa? They had a fucking excuse as to why they wouldn’t have automatically noticed!”

“And I didn’t?! He cancelled any meeting we were supposed to have and then I got a message I was being transferred to California! How was I-”

“YOU’RE A FUCKING EMPATH, ELAINE! AND YOU COULDN’T EVEN TELL THAT YOUR OLDER BROTHER HAD BEEN REPLACED BY A DARK WIZARD!?!”

The words seemed to echo in his office and it was only seconds that the rage that had been building in him that entire week rushed out of him, replaced by unnerving numbness, and then there was nothing but an eerie silence as what he said repeated in his head. Warily, he looked over to where Elaine was. She was staring at him owlishly, blinking slowly, her hands twisting around one another as her eyes seemed to begin to glimmer.

Shit.

“Elli…I...I didn’t mean-” He started, but she shook her head as she took step back, inhaling and exhaling shakily.

“Yes, you did.”

“El-”

She shook her head again, not wanting to listen at that point and spun around, opening the door and hurriedly exited, closing it quickly, leaving him in the deafening silence of his office.


“Mind her head.”

“Newt, this isn’t the first time I’ve had to hold a baby.”

“I know, but still…”

Queenie chuckled as she turned to look at the two brothers, the younger fussing over the baby that was currently in Theseus’s arms. Credence had finally convinced Tina to go get that hotdog he had been asking about, so she had dragged the men away so Tina could bond with Credence.

Though it was also proving to be rather entertaining.

“I’m not going to drop her!”

“I never said you were!!” Newt argued and Queenie was about to burst into laughter, until she spotted a person she had met a few times.

“Miss Graves?”

The Scamander brothers paused in their conversation and looked to where Queenie was looking, the latter of the three staring at a hunched over figure who straightened abruptly, turning around.

“Elaine?” Newt said softly, in concern. She blinked, almost in confusion before her expression changed.

“Oh! The Scamander Brothers. Ms. Goldstein.” Elaine said, wiping at her cheeks and forcing a bright smile on her face. “It is a lovely day for a stroll, I suppose.”

“...Are you alright?”

“I’m fine! Why...why wouldn’t I be?” She replied with a bright smile, but Queenie cocked her head for a moment then gasped.

“Oh...Elaine, I don’t think Mister Graves meant it.” Queenie soothed and Elaine blinked several times confused, before her eyes watered up and it was clear she was forcing back tears again.

“He’s not...he’s not wrong...”

“Mister Graves doesn’t hate you at all and if he blames just you for all this, than he’s a lousy brother.” Queenie interrupted as Newt blinked in surprise and Theseus frowned.

“He’s not…” Elaine trailed off, wiping at her face.

“No. No more of that. You need a distraction.” Queenie said.

“Wait, what happened?”

“Mister Graves yelled at Ms. Elaine here after they got into an argument.” Queenie explained softly to Theseus and Newt. “He...said some pretty hurtful things, so she needs a break. I’ll take her to my favorite bakery, alright Newt?” Queenie said with a smile, glancing between the brothers. “You did promise Theseus lunch.”

“Oh...right. Quite right.”

Queenie smiled brightly, and taking the youngest Graves sibling by the arm and the two walked away, Queenie chatting with Elaine as she practically dragged Elaine down the sidewalk. Theseus frowned.

“Siblings have spats all the time, Theseus.” Newt reminded him. Theseus sighed.

“I know it’s just...while I’m not all surprised that he snapped, he’s worrying me.”

“What do you mean?”

“You know this isn’t healthy. You’ve seen beasts that have been hurt, Newt and have helped them. Injured ones always snap back and attack those near them.”

“He’s not a creature with some sort of physical injury or illness, Theseus.”

“Well the amount of trauma he’s gone through, he basically is. He needs someone to help him.”

“Probably.”

“...What about you?”

“Me??” Newt said in surprise, looking at his brother in shock.

“Yeah.”

“I don’t know how to help him.” Newt muttered, watching as Theseus bounced Rosie lightly, the little baby squirming around and looking at Theseus. The older Scamander brother sighed softly.

“You do. You just have be there for him, I suppose.”

“But he doesn’t want anyone there for him.”

“He does...he just doesn’t know how to ask. That’s the way he was during the war. And besides, you have knack for getting people to talk to you.”

“I do not.”

“Need I remind you of when I got back from the war. I had just one, just one bloody nightmare that you overheard and you managed to talk me through it and start working on it.”
Newt was quiet.

“He’s gone through a lot in the last year. Honestly, I was surprised he went back to work at all. Being imprisoned by Grindelwald can do a lot of things, and he wasn’t very...emotional to begin with, but he had to feel betrayed that no one noticed.”

“Some of his coworkers were imperiused, moved around among the department, and others had their memories obliviated.” Newt pointed out.
“But not all of them. Sure, the ones would ask the most questions...but it had to sting that no one noticed the difference. And he can only work for so long to numb the pain and deny what happened until it becomes too much to ignore. This case is probably getting to him, because it may involve Grindelwald, and he’s seeing his failure to stop him before a reason that this is happening right now. His sister coming in and telling him he needed to slow down was probably the straw that broke the camel’s back.”

“I suppose…” Newt said and Theseus regarded his expression and sighed.

“You said you weren’t getting involved.”

“I’m not.”

“Uh-huh, and we’re related to the King of England.”

“You know Mum always said-”

“Newt.” Theseus interrupted with an amused smile, before it gentled and regarded his brother. “You care about Percy.”

“...You’re being ridiculous.” Newt muttered as he threw his brother a look.

“Am not.”

“Are to.”

“Am not.”

“He’s a grown man, Theseus.”

“And so am I. And I’ve had a bit more experience when dealing with those types of emotions.”

Newt was quiet.

“It doesn’t matter.”

“...not everyone is going to be like Leta, you know.” Theseus said after a few moments and Newt stiffened, before looking away.

“Please don’t, Theseus.” Newt muttered and Theseus sighed.

“I won’t tell him, that’s something only you can do.”

Newt was quiet, staring out into the park as children raced by them laughing as though there wasn’t a care in the world.

If only he could have felt the same way.


“Tell me, are you familiar with the Tales of the Three Brothers?”

Percival blinked, lifting his head slowly to stare at the man watching him from his desk chair, tapping on the arm lightly.

“Of course you are. Your nieces and nephews love the Tales of Beedle and Bard, and always want a story to be read from it.”

“What of it?” He rasped out, inwardly chastising himself at how hoarse his voice sounded, and how he flinched as Grindelwald stood, the chair creaking.

“You never found it interesting?”

“Interesting? It’s a story. A fairytale.”

“Oh Percival, Percival, Percival…” Grindelwald said, walking towards him, moving around him. Percival stared at him through his peripherals. How narrow minded you are. Every fairytale holds a kernel of truth in between the lines.”

Percival couldn’t stop the grunt as his head was forced forward, his body bending to follow, agony flooding through his system.

“Perhaps a refresher of the story as an eternal mark of mine…a reminder of it.” Grindelwald remarked calmly as his grip tightened on the back of Percival’s neck, and Percival inhaled sharply as he saw a faint light green glow.

Then pain on his upper back.

The Elder Wand," Grindelwald said as Percival struggled to not yell and he dragged a straight vertical line slowly down Percival’s spine. He shoved Percival’s head further as the younger man attempted to sit up and move away, "The Resurrection Stone," he continued, and Percival’s eyes blurred as the wand burned a circle on top of the line. The smell of burning flesh was nauseating and a sound broke through his throat, sounding like a high keening, "and The Cloak of Invisibility," he finished, enclosing both line and circle in a triangle, the top tip stretched in between his shoulder blades, "together," he said, "the Deathly Hallows, and the one who owns all three...the Master of Death. How simple. Yet with so much power, it is of course feared and despised. Hidden in the shadows."

Percival inhaled sharply as a finger pressed in a joined junction of the burning skin.

“Perhaps it’s been hidden in the shadows too long...and perhaps it is time, for it to be brought out into the open.”

At the surge of magic flowing through the burn, blinding pain traveled through his body and it was then that he found that he could still scream.

And Grindelwald laughed.

He shot up from where he was lying down, phantom pains traveling through the scar on his back, trying to ignore his skin crawling as though a finger glided over it. As he struggled to breathe, he realized something else dimly. He couldn’t feel the familiar magic of the silencing charms washing over him, tingling as though he was in a rainstorm, or the familiar ringing sound that dully bore into him with each minute.

And he heard footsteps rushing down the hall.

Shit.

Newt seemed to ignore their agreement of knocking before entering as the door swung open with a loud bang.

“Sweet Merlin, are you alright?!” Newt breathed, concern laced into each word. Percival remained silent, trying to stop his shoulders from shaking as badly as they were and hoping Newt didn’t see it.

“Mister Graves?”

“Fine...I’m fine…” He muttered finally, inwardly flinching at how hoarse his voice sounded, looking at Credence who was clinging to Newt’s pant leg and peering at him in concern. “Go back to sleep.”

There was silence and Percival nearly snorted when he looked up and Newt was gone. Well, he seemed to follow orders in these type of occasions. He slid to the side of the bed, running his hand through his sweat-slicked hair, sitting there for a few minutes, just hunched over, having no energy to even try and get his prosthetics.

He only looked up when there was a cough; someone clearing their throat. Newt stared at him with a gentle smile, in his one arm a very awake Rosie, the other; extended towards him, a cup of what looked like tea.

“Here. Chamomile Tea. It will calm you down.”

“You don’t have to…”

“It’s not a problem. Credence went back to bed once I said I would see if you were alright again, and besides, it was Rosie’s feeding time anyways.” He said, lifting Rosalind up slightly to show that his other hand was grasping a bottle.

Slowly, he took the cup with his hand, watching as Newt settled next to him, shifting Rosalind around. The little baby gurgled, tiny fingers stretching sleepily towards the bottle that Newt proceeded to feed her with. Silence washed over them as Rosalind began to feed.

“...Are you truly alright?” Newt asked after a moment, looking at him anxiously. “You sounded like you were being tortured.”

“That’s not that far off, I suppose.” He replied, watching Rosalind continue feeding, blissfully innocent of what lay around her. Newt looked at him in concern.

“Grindelwald?”

Silently, he nodded, staring at the cup of tea.

“During my capture, it wasn’t uncommon for him to torture me, try to get into my head. But this time...he decided that leaving me without an arm and a leg wasn’t enough of a signature. I was...assaulted, and he carved the symbol for the Deathly Hallows into my back.”

“Merlin...Graves-”

“Don’t. It was just evidence of my weakness. My failure. My greatest failure.”

“It’s not.”

“If I had beaten him, these children-”

“Don’t.” Newt’s voice interrupted, sharper now. “That’s ridiculous. What happened with Grindelwald is not your fault, nor is what happened to these children that are missing, or the one that was killed your fault. None of that was your fault.”

Percival dropped his gaze to the floor, hand clasping the teacup tightly in his hand that he was sure was going to break. “That’s very kind of you, but--”

“No,” Newt interrupted again, and Percival looked at him in surprise at the conviction in his voice. “Mr. Graves, what happened to you was not your fault. I’ve met men like him before, and I probably will after in the black markets for creatures. The one thing that they all have in common is they don’t play fair. You, on the other hand, are good. Far too good. Grindelwald isn’t. And because of that, Grindelwald doesn’t play fair, because he doesn’t care about the lives that he’s going to affect, the surrounding area. All he cares about is himself and his cause. You care about others. That’s not a failure because you held your sense of duty of the lives of others.”

Percival stared at him in surprise for several minutes, looking at how resolute Newt seemed about that, and something seemed to race in his chest and he coughed to clear his throat and took a swig of the tea.

“...You never told me. How did you know Grindelwald was impersonating me?” Percival asked after taking another sip.

“Well...I guess that it was incredibly obvious when he began to make his speech to the aurors and president. I’ve heard them before in Europe and-”

“You’ve heard Grindelwald’s speeches before?”

“Yes? Not because I wanted to, mind you…” Newt added with a frown, “and not so much in England and more in Germany. He’s popular there. Have recordings of them on the radios and everything.”

Well, Percival could scratch Germany off of his list of places to visit.

“Anyway, if I had known you before meeting him, I probably would have decided that something wasn’t right. For one, you smile a bit more than Grindelwald did, even if it’s forced politeness. You walk with confidence, but unlike him, you walk slow enough where if someone needed to talk to you, they wouldn’t have to run to keep up with you. You’re ambidextrous, though you prefer to use your right for wand and left for wandless magic. He just used the right hand for both. A few others, but they were sporadic I suppose. Sometimes he would use those habits, other times I think he reverted back to his. I can’t speak for the aurors here, but it’s not certain traits that they would automatically pick up on if they weren’t actively looking at those habits. I have to pick up on the most subtle of movements or a slight misstep could mean my life, or a creature’s life. Not everyone is trained in that way of manner. Not even aurors.”

Percival was quiet, stewing over the information.

“Maybe those skills should be added to the curriculum for auror training. It would save a whole bunch of grief.”

Newt seemed to beam at that and chuckled slightly.

“I suppose Mr. Graves that would be-”

“Percival.”

“I...Pardon?”

“You can call me Percival.” He repeated, looking at the magizoologist, who blinked in surprise. His expression gentled into a smile and he nodded quick and decisive.

“If that’s alright with you.” Newt replied and Percival nodded.

“It is…”

“Alright...Percival.”

There was a comfortable silence for a moment as Rosalind finished her bottle, squirming around in Newt’s grip as he worked on burping her. Newt smiled at her for a moment, before looking at Percival.

“Have you ever met Tina’s younger sister?”

“Queenie Goldstein? Once or twice in passing. Why?”

“Percival...the nightmares you’re having aren’t healthy for you. And I think you know that, even without your sister telling you. I’m not suggesting you go to a mind healer, but possibly just having someone to talk to that isn’t related or a colleague in the Security Department. Queenie is a wonderful listener.” He admitted gently. “And she can help find the problem if you don’t know where the trigger is. She doesn’t mind helping.”

Percival glanced at him, swallowing roughly

“I’ll think about it.” He finally said and Newt smiled lightly as Rosalind yawned widely in the dim morning light.


He felt...lighter by the time Monday came around. He was still tired, but the feeling of being dragged under by the shadows or drowning over work had diminished greatly since Friday. He was looking at another report when the door knocked.

“Come in.”

“...Percy?”

Percival blinked and looked up to see Elaine poking her head in hesitantly, a chagrined look on her face.

“Elli?”

“I came to...apologize for yesterday.” She murmured. “I shouldn’t have snapped at you like that. You’re under a lot of stress, I know that.”

“Elli-”

“And I really am sorry…” She said, apparently deciding to ignore his attempt to interrupt, “that we...especially I...didn’t notice what happened with Grindelwald, and-”

He pulled her over into a hug, sighing heavily.

“Don’t. I shouldn’t have yelled at you like that. Stressed or not, what happened with him wasn’t remotely your fault or anyone else, and I shouldn’t have yelled at you for something like that.”

“It’s alright…”

“No it isn’t. I’m the older brother, you’re the little sister...and you shouldn’t have had to go through that.”

“I’m twenty-five. Hardly little.”

“And I’m forty. Still your big brother. And one of those jobs of being an older sibling is protecting you, not blaming you.” he added as she moved to protest, “it wasn’t your fault, Elaine. I promise...just trust me on that okay?”

“...fine…” She muttered after a long minute and he sighed in relief. “You’re still an ass.” She added softly, though there was no bite to it, and he chuckled.

“I think that comes with the job. Can you imagine if someone with a personality like Tristan took over here?”

“The Department would explode.” She agreed and tightened her hug on Percival. “Please be careful.”

“I will. Promise.” He replied and she sighed.

“I am sorry…” He repeated again in the silence. “So sorry…”

She was quiet, but nodded slightly and the guilt eased a little in his chest.

Things were far from being alright.

But it was a start.



Chapter Text

“Morning, Mister Graves!!”

Percival looked up as he spotted Queenie walking towards him with a bright smile on her face. He sighed and withheld the glare that he usually gave to people as she fell into step with him as he walked towards the Woolworth Building. He probably couldn’t even do it if he tried.

“Ms. Goldstein.” He greeted. She seemed to observe him and then huffed.

“Now, Mister Graves. You know you’re supposed to eat breakfast. And not just a piece of toast and coffee!!” She scolded before smiling and lifting up a bag. “Luckily for you I have an extra!” She chirped happily, holding a paper bag up. Hesitantly, he took it, opening it to see an Erumpent shaped pastry. He looked at it, then her quizzically. She beamed, giving a coy wink, before walking alongside him as they headed to the MACUSA headquarters.

Only a few days of formally introducing himself and he had figured it out belatedly that now he wouldn’t ever be able to rid himself of the youngest Goldstein. And, admittedly it was nice not having to verbalize everything and with her natural Legilimency made her a nice companion, especially when he unknowingly was entering a scenario that was dragging his mind into when he had been held by Grindelwald.

That had been a panic attack avoidance he was grateful for, and truly he was thankful for Newt for even suggesting that he met the younger Goldstein.

Even if now she babied him now more than his siblings did.

He sighed, rolling the top of the bag closed, his mind wandering a little bit as Queenie chatted about the weather, half-listening as he thought about the letter in his office back home. His mother was rather insistent that
Percival bring Newt, Rosie, and Credence to the Graves family lunch. Honestly, the way she had worded, he was pretty sure he’d be kicked out if he didn’t bring them.

However, he didn’t even know if Newt would want to come.

“Oh I think you should invite Newt! He needs to have some fun!”

Percival all but spun around, looking at Queenie incredulously as she smiled, almost coyly, but her eyes remained ever innocent.

“Yes Mister Graves?”

She smiled teasingly and he frowned.

“While I appreciate it occasionally, I would prefer you didn’t read my mind all the time, Ms. Goldstein.”

“I know, I know. But it’s not reading your mind when you practically broadcast it to anyone who has an ounce or fraction of an ability to use Legilimency, Mister Graves.” Queenie replied with a smile and he tried to ignore his cheeks suddenly burning and he cleared his throat. “But in all seriousness, Mister Graves, you should ask Newt.” Queenie said with a smile, looking at him with a brilliant smile. “It has been nearly a month, and he’s only really ever talked to some of the aurors, you, Teenie, and me. And his older brother. Maybe it’s a good thing for him to meet other people.”

He was silent, looking away from the young woman who then laughed as they entered the headquarters. She began to head to the lift, waving back at him.

“Think about it, Mister Graves.” She said. “I’ll see you later!”

“Queenie-”

“No buts, Mister Graves!” She said with a smile as she all but skipped to the lift to head to work, leaving him amongst the crowd.

Sighing, he pulled and took a bite out of the pastry.

And dammit to hell...she was right.

It was pretty tasty.


Newt bit back the laugh that yearned to break through as he watched Rosie’s face light up while he tickled her feet, sitting in an extra chair next to Tina’s desk. Credence was sitting next to him, coloring on a piece of parchment.

Tina looked up and smiled.

“Never knew you were so good with children, Newt.”

“Children are easier to communicate to.” Newt admitted as Rosie giggled, tiny hands clutching at his fingers.

Tina chuckled slightly, shrugging before going back to her report. It was quiet for a few minutes.

“Oye, Goldstein!”

Newt glanced over as a tall, rather muscular man strode over. Tina rolled her eyes, frowning slightly, and seeming to focus more on her paper.

“Dawson.”

“How is the loveliest lady in this department doing?”

“I was doing better when you weren’t here.” Tina muttered, keeping her gaze trained on her paper. Newt frowned glancing at Tina.

“Now don’t be like that doll-face. Tell you what, let me take you out to dinner. I can show you some wand techniques. Practice on your...aiming.”

“Why you-”

“Weren’t you the one whose brain was almost devoured by my Swooping Evil when we escaped from being nearly executed?” Newt interrupted and Dawson swung around, staring at Newt as his face reddened. “Your aim didn’t seem all that good then.”

“Why you little-” Dawson strode forward, as Tina began to dive in front of Newt and Rosie, staring at her colleague in defiance.

“Dawson!”

The auror snapped to attention and Tina, Newt, and Credence looked behind Dawson to see Percival standing by his office glaring.

“My office. Now.”

“But Sir-!”

“Did I stutter?” Percival asked, in a dangerous tone that Newt noted Tina and Dawson seemed to stiffen at.

“N-no sir.”

“Then my. Office. NOW.”

“I’d listen to him if I were you.” A new voice said, and Newt glanced to his left as Theseus strode forward, a cheery smile on his face, but his eyes glinting of danger as he clapped his hand on Dawson’s shoulder. “Because if you don’t I’LL deal with you, and I’m a scary person to deal with.”

Dawson seemed to quail under the Brit’s gaze and he stumbled backwards towards Percival, and then slumped and followed his boss.

“Git.”

“He thinks he’s the bee’s knees, but he’s an absolute bum. Gives a lot of the girl’s here the heebie jeebies.”

“And Percy allows it?”

“No. He’s been warned a few times, but then Grindelwald came and ignored it, so Dawson thought it was alright. He’s been keeping it under wraps for a little bit lately, but I guess he got a little too confident and thought he’d still be ignored by Graves.”

“I repeat. Git.” Theseus muttered, before looking at his brother, who was trying to calm Rosie down. “You alright?”

“I’m fine. I probably shouldn’t have insulted him like that.”

“No, I’m sorry that you even had to deal with that,” Tina interjected hurriedly, “really. It’s not like I haven’t dealt with him before.”

“Just because you have dealt with it, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have to keep going through it.” Theseus replied and Tina flushed. They looked over as Percival’s door swung open and Dawson stormed out, his face a strange shade of red, almost mingling to purple. Percival came out a few moments later, cool as a cucumber, watching as Dawson strode out.

He then glanced at the group as Theseus left the group and strode forward, beginning to chat pleasantly with Percival. Percival glanced back at Newt, a strange expression on his face, which slowly slid away as he focused his attentions on Theseus. Newt blinked several times.

He didn’t understand it.


And still, by the evening time Newt didn’t understand it.

Or rather couldn’t understand.

He didn’t understand this strange feeling that seemed to have rooted itself in his chest. Fondness was the best word he could think of, but he couldn’t help but feel that it was a bit of an understated word.

He sighed as he sat near the bowtruckles tree, cleaning away some dead leaves around it. Rosie cooed sleepily from his back and he settled her a bit more in her sling.

“Pickett, I don’t know what is going on with me.” Newt muttered and the bowtruckle chirped, tugging lightly on copper-brown curls. “I know, I know...I’m probably being silly. Besides, why would he even like me? I’m more annoying than useful.”

Pickett chirped his denial, tugging on Newt’s hair.

“Ow! Ow! Pickett, what have we said about pulling on my hair?” Newt asked, delicately pulling the bowtruckle off his head. “And if you wake Rosie up from her nap, you’ll be in trouble.”
Pickett chirped a bit quieter, crossing his limbs in a scolding manner. “Now don’t be like that...it’s true. I’m not exactly the highest commodity on that market.”

Still not convinced, Pickett chirped his rebuttal, but Newt ignored him. The bowtruckle seemed to take this as an annoyance, and climbed down off of Newt’s head, going to the sling Rosie was curled up in.

“Don’t you wake her up, Pickett.” Newt warned, “I-”

“Mister Scamander!” Credence chirped from the shack’s entrance. “Dinner’s ready!”

Dinner?

He blinked several times, confused. He hadn’t even started making dinner for them, though Rosie was a bit easier to make food for. Confused, he finished feeding the bowtruckles the woodlice, making sure to give Pickett three of them, before heading to the shack and then up the ladder.

Sure enough, as he entered, he could smell something being made in the kitchen.

“Percival?”

“I see Credence informed you of dinner.”

“Well yes, but...you didn’t have to-”

“I don’t mind. Besides, think of it as a formal apology.”

“Apology?” Newt repeated.

“For Nigel Dawson’s comments made to you, and Ms. Goldstein.” Percival explained, almost in confusion. Newt flushed.

“Oh...oh, don’t be apologetic. I shouldn’t have riled him up with the comment about the Swooping Evil...rather rude of me.”

“Actually, I thought he rather deserved it.” Percival responded and Newt flushed. “He was already on his way out with the comments that I overheard him saying to the female staff. He more than needed to hear that.”

“O-oh...I see…”

“Also think of it as another apology, albeit a personal one.” Percival added and Newt blinked, cocking his head to the side.

“What do you mean?”

“My parents sent me a message inquiring if you would be willing to come along for a family dinner during the weekend.”

“A family dinner? But I’m not-”

“Family, I know. But my mother is insistent.” Percival replied as he cut up some garlic. Silence answered him, and he glanced over at Newt, who was staring at the kitchen counters. Percival frowned in concern.

“You don’t have to go, you know.”

Newt blinked and looked up at him as Percival sighed.

“Despite what my mother says you’re not required to go. I don’t mind if you want to go, but my family can be...chaotic.” He said after a few moments of searching for the right word. “If you don’t feel comfortable-”

“I-I don’t mind...it’s just...won’t I be a bother?”

Percival blinked, frowning.

“Why would you be a bother?”

“I’m not...well liked by people,” Newt said sheepishly, “quite the opposite. Many find me annoying.” Percival blinked, his frown growing.

“You will not be a bother, Newt. I can assure you of that.” He replied and Newt blinked several times.

“O-oh…” Newt said with a blush, scratching the back of his neck. He was silent for a few moments, then he focused his attentions back on Percival “I mean...I don’t mind. Going that is.”

“Good. I’ll let my mother know.” Percival replied with a snort, smirking lightly. “Merlin knows she’ll be ecstatic.”

“I doubt she’ll be that excited. I’m just me.”

Percival glanced at him for a moment, opening his mouth for a moment, almost as though he was going to refute the comment, but a disgruntled wail from the sling attached to Newt’s back focused the men’s attentions to the fussing infant.

“She disagrees.” Percival commented lightly after Rosie calmed down and Newt sighed, chuckling lightly under his breath. “And so do I.”

Newt’s head shot up, looking at the man in confusion, but Percival had turned around, returning to making food. Newt wasn’t sure what to say, and wasn’t sure if he COULD. His heart was beating far too hard and his lungs seemed to have seized to force words out.

Oh bloody hell…


“Sorry about all this. The sneaking in and all. Newt, Rosie, and Credence were dragged out by Percival, and I wasn’t invited...so I can’t get into Percy’s place.” Theseus muttered and Tina chuckled.

“It’s alright. Queenie’s out with Jacob right now. So it’s fine.”

“You look absolutely exhausted.”

“I am.” Tina admitted, sitting down heavily at the table.

“The case?”

“Mhm. It’s getting stressful and we haven’t had any leads. What about yours?”

“Not even a nibble.” Theseus remarked dryly, “honestly I’m beginning to wonder if my perp’s deaths and your cases are related.”

“We could only be so lucky.” Tina admitted with a chuckle. There was silence before Tina stood abruptly, her face turning a faint shade of red.

“I’m sorry, I should have offered to make some coffee...or do you prefer tea?”

“Either works, but you don’t-” Theseus began, but Tina was already heading to the kitchen counters. Theseus was silent, watching as she flicked her wand around, making cups and water floated in the air. It was rather graceful to watch, magical, if he was going to get sappy. He forced himself to look away as she began to turn, and instead focused on the pictures of the missing kids that littered Tina’s table.

“Any new ones?”

“Thankfully no. Doesn’t make it any better for the ones that are still missing. We still don’t know what Grindelwald could be using them for, so...”

“Mm.”

“What?”

“See, here’s the part that’s bothering me.” Theseus remarked, brow furrowed. “I’ve been investigating and hunting Grindelwald for awhile now. This isn’t his MO at all. Grindelwald’s I mean. Trying to get rid of those in his way, yes, that’s his MO. But snatching kids? I’ve never heard of him doing that in any of the countries or continents he’s been on.”

Tina was silent, her frown growing as well.

“What about Credence and Modesty though?” She finally quipped.

“As sick as it was, he had a use for them. He was intending to use Modesty as a pawn. Or at least whoever he had originally thought was the Obscurus was. And Credence, he was just a pawn to find the kid. He had no intentions of using him for any other reason. These...none of these show any reason to be snatched or any use for them. They aren’t old enough to have wands or even duel, and even if their lives had rough patches it wasn’t enough for them to become Obscuri.”

“So you don’t think it’s Grindelwald?”

“I’m not sure. It’s getting people’s attention...but I’ve never heard of him doing this. Could mean he’s desperate, but what scares me is that he could be using the children for.”

“What do you mean?”

“Grindelwald wanted to use an Obscurus here.” Theseus said, his voice low as he took a bite out of a pastry. “And they are created by the manifestation of the repressed energy of a magical child mainly through a traumatic event...”

Tina’s throat suddenly felt dry.

“Y...you think he’s trying to make Obscuri?”

“I don’t know, but I’m praying to God that the theory is wrong. Whatever the case, we need a lead.”

Tina was quiet.

“...I think I have an idea.”

“What?” Theseus asked and Tina was silent before sighing and standing, looking directly at him

“...We need to see Gnarlak.”


Newt stared at the house that lay in front of him as Percival strode forward, casually walking to the large home. It was notable, likely historic, if Newt was honest to himself. The stone brick house had trees around each sides, some bare of leaves, others were probably evergreens had small snow on the branches, several chimneys. It was large too...and if he was right, there seemed to be a meadow in the back. Percival paused.

“What?”

“Nothing it’s very...early American?”

“It’s really big.” Credence added, peeking his head from behind Newt.

Percival glanced back at the home and chuckled.

“I suppose so. It’s been in the family for generations. The Graves decided that being close to a river was the best thing to do.”

“A river?”

“Mhm. There’s a river around here. Somewhere. It’s pretty dry normally, but the way the weather’s been with the snow melting and then falling, it’s probably a bit swollen. Anyway, my family’s descendants have stayed here since we arrived here in this country. What? English not have that?”

“Depends on the family, I suppose. The Malfoys, Blacks, and Lestranges, more than likely have had their family homes since ancient times. But as far as early, early English homes...if they were in London, The Great Fire likely destroyed them. So anything made before 1666 in that city is gone.”

“Ah, right. You Brit’s tend to keep your apartments rather close in cities, don’t you. Fire hazards and everything.”

Newt glanced at Percival, and wasn’t sure if he the man had actually made a joke or was being serious. He didn’t really have a moment to ask, as suddenly the front door opened.

“Welcome home Bambino!!”

Newt watched as Percival sighed before he was literally dragged forward by the familiar petite woman in front of him, kissing his cheeks lightly.

“Hi Ma.”

“How was your trip here? Not too hectic was it?” Alma asked.

“Not at all. Are you feeling alright? Sebille said in our last chat-”

“Bah, just a little cold. I’ll be fine.”

Percival frowned at that.

“Ma, if you’re fighting a cold you shouldn’t be-”

“Oh don’t be like that too. Elaine has already said the entire conversation.” Percival’s mother said with a huff, and Percival looked up at Elaine who stood at the entrance of the home. She offered a smile.

“Hi Percival.”

“Elli.”

Newt watched the two as Percival dragged his baby sister into a hug, which she returned slowly. It was clear, even if he had apologized, the two were still on shaky ground. Neither had gotten into specifics of the argument between the two, though it was clear that they were still in the process of mending the wounds.

“...first person in a long while who was more interested in my brother than me. I’m impressed.”

Newt jumped and looked back to his front, and was staring at a beautiful woman in front of him.

She was similar to Percival in many ways; dark eyes stared at him as dark curls framed her face, and like Percival, was impeccably dressed in fashion that was similar to what muggles wore in the states.
She smiled almost coyly, and he suddenly felt as though he was being analyzed and cleared his throat slightly.

“Newt Scamander.”

“Sebille Fontaine.”

Newt wracked his mind as he remembered the lessons his grandmother had imprinted into his mind. Sebille took his hand and shook with a brilliant smile, and he felt his face burning at the attention he was suddenly getting.

“Going after my woman, are you?”

He blinked as a man walked over and Sebille chuckled, removing her hand from Newt’s grip and playfully swatting at the man’s chest as he came over to her side. Half of his face had looked like it had been melted off. He seemed to notice Newt’s staring and chuckled.

“Was hit by a wave of mustard gas to the face during the War. Luckily another one of my wizard friends pulled me away before it became fatal, but there’s only so much healing, magic or not, can do.”

“I’m sorry...I didn’t mean to stare.” Newt said quickly, flushing slightly.

“It’s alright. I’m used to it.”

“It’s because of how handsome you are, Love.” Sebille responded with a smile, kissing his cheek lightly. The man smiled gently at Sebille and then looked back at Newt.

“Calvin Fontaine. Pleased to meet you.”

“Oh, Newt. Newt Scamander.”

“Scamander? You wouldn’t happen to be the one who created that novel about creatures, would you?”

“Oh I ah...yes.” Newt said, flushing brightly.

“I see. So you’re the one who’s gotten Freddie to start running around like an...what did he say they were again?”

“Erumpent, dear. It is rather adorable though.” Sebille replied with a smile and Calvin chuckled. Newt flushed, but couldn’t hide the small smile as he ducked his head down. Rosie decided to awaken and began to squirm around, making a fussing sound.

“So this must be the ‘Rosalind’ Elaine and Mama were talking about.” Sebille remarked as Newt lifted Rosie out of the sling on his chest.

“Yes, Seb. Unless you and Calvin are having another child, heaven forbid.”
Sebille chuckled as Percival walked over, Credence following closely behind him, peering out to look at Sebille. When the older woman glanced down at him, he ducked his head away.

“Hello Perry.”

“Seb, I told you to not call me that.” Percival remarked in annoyance and Sebille smiled coyly. “If Tristan hear’s you calling me-”

“HEY PERRY! HOW WAS THE TRIP!”

“...that. I hate you.” He muttered, glaring at Sebille who smiled as Percival turned and greeted his younger brother, who had apparently already helped himself to some food.

“How long have you been here?”

“Since this morning. Mama makes the best food.”

“Well yeah, but you literally dragged your family here in the morning to get-! Are you mimicking me?” Percival asked in annoyance, looking at Sebille as Tristan shoved another mouthful of food, watching as his sister crossed her arms in the same manner as Percival.

“Tradition is tradition. And it’s my turn.”

“We were two and four when we made that promise, Seb.”

“And we shall do it until we’re old and wrinkled! Well...older and wrinklier...you’re already at the wrinkly part.”

“Hey!”

Newt couldn’t tell what was more amusing. The fact that Percival seemed so at ease around his siblings, or the fact that even with the stoic personality he portrayed in the city was being ignored by his siblings.

“UNCLE PERCY!”

“UNCA P!”

Newt barely comprehended the words before five children tackled the current Director of Magic Security, who stumbled, but remained upright as the babble of children clamored around Percival. Credence shrank behind Newt, staring at the kids in wonder. Sebille cleared her throat and the kids went quiet.

“What did we say, you guys?” Sebille stated and her children as well as the triplets scampered away and stood back with their parents.

“Not to tackle Uncle Percy.” Two said.

“Be polite.” The triplets echoed.

“That’s right. Now, what do we say to Percival?”

“Sorry…” The quintet said, all five children looking at their feet. Percival was silent before grinning.

“So how are my Aurors in the making?”

All five children perked up

“I don’t wanna be an auror, Uncle Percy.” The one girl, the one who looked like Calvin said.

“Oh, you don’t?”

“Nope! I wanna be a ballet dancer!”

“Well I want to be an auror, Uncle Percy!”

Percival’s mouth twitched as Sebille sighed.

“Before you go and start telling Perry your dreams, we have another guest for you to say hi to.” Sebille replied and the group of children turned to where Newt, Credence, and Rosie were.

And suddenly their attentions were now solely on them.

“Hiya Mister Newt!” Elliot, Ansel, and Blache echoed, waving their hands at the man they remembered from when they had visited their uncle earlier.

“Oh, helllo-”

“Hi!!! My name’s Cora!” The little girl who wanted to be a ballet dancer said happily as Credence hid further behind Newt.

“My name’s Frederick!” The older boy beamed. Newt smiled and Blanche blinked.

“Mister Newt, wha’s that?” Blanche asked, pointing and Newt looked down to see Pickett peeking out of his lapel. He smiled and with his free hand, gently collected Pickett and knelt down.

“This is Pickett. He’s a bowtruckle.”

“Bow...truckle?” The tiny girl repeated, stumbling a bit as the other children crowded around him.

“Mhm. He has attachment issues, so he stays with me. You can say hi, but no touching alright?”

“Wow, cool!”

“Hi Pickett!!”

Pickett squeaked and clung to Newt’s hand as the children all stared at him.

Credence at the moment stood a little bit ways away from Newt, watching as the other kids surrounded him. He suddenly felt all alone like he it wasn’t natural for him to be around these people. He looked down at his feet.

“You’re such an unnatural boy! Disgusting, wicked. God should have-”

“I don’t think we’ve had the chance to introduce ourselves to each other, have we?”

He jumped and looked up as a pretty woman with a short curled bob had walked over to him as the other kids continued to watch Newt showing Pickett.

“I’m...I’m Credence.” The little boy said shyly as Elaine knelt down. She looked at him and smiled gently. Newt glanced back at the two Credence blinked and then blushed as Elaine ruffled his head lightly.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Credence. My name is Elaine Graves.”

“H...hello.” He muttered, looking down at his feet. She was quiet, and gently lifted his chin. When he finally looked at her, she had the most angelic smile on her face.

“And he shall smite the wicked and plunge them into the fiery pit.”

He blinked, unsure whose voice was echoing in his head as Elaine watched him. She then glanced at the other group.

“Do you want to say hello?”

“I...I don’t know…” He murmured shyly, looking down at his feet, fiddling with the edges of his coat.

Elaine smiled gently and then patted his head.

“Well if you want to talk at all, I’m more than willing to listen.” She said pushing his hair back. He stared at her, blinking innocently as she stood, barely noticing Percival glancing at them in confusion. Something strange thudded in his heart, and if he thought a bit harder on it, he could remember a gentle hand doing something similar, a soft voice singing him to sleep…

And the one thing he now remember was how safe he had felt in those arms.


Newt felt exhausted as Pickett clung to his lapel, hiding slightly from the prying eyes of the kids, of whom were now running around in the yard. Rosie was snuggled up in a small baby lounger, suckling happily on a binky. He could hear the voices of Alma, Sebille, and Livia faintly inside from the kitchen, likely making food, and he could spot the men just in the peripherals. The only one that wasn’t amongst the crowd was Percival, who it seemed, had decided to watch over the children.

Judging by the lack of question, he gathered it was something that the Graves family was used to.

“I didn’t realize you had such a large family.” Newt commented finally, glancing at Percival who shrugged.

“My siblings, barring Elaine decided to take the ‘continue the family line’ quite literally.”

“So Elaine doesn’t want to have children?” Newt asked and watched as Percival seemed to shift away, almost sheepishly.

“No. She want’s children. Just hasn’t found the right person to be with.”

“Or rather the right person that he approves of, most likely.” Newt mused, holding back the smile as Percival seemed all of a sudden more interested in his cufflinks. Speaking of Elaine, Newt noticed the youngest of the Graves siblings walk past, holding out a tray of mugs, and placing it on a table in the middle. Right behind her was Credence, who seemed to have taken a liking to her, which had surprised Newt, as as far as he could tell, Credence had seemed rather to shy away from females other than Tina, Queenie, and his mother. As Elaine turned, she barely avoided missing Credence, and though she didn’t seem to mind, Newt glanced over at Percival, who had gone to the table and snatched a mug of coffee.

“Is...is it alright that he’s following her?” Newt asked nervously as he watched Credence continue to follow Elaine like a lost duckling. “She won’t be annoyed?”
Elaine stopped abruptly, Credence running into her legs before looking up at her confused. Concerned, Newt began to stand and collect Credence, when Elaine turned and dragged Credence into her arms.

“Oh, you’re so adorable!”

“Nah, he’ll be fine.” Percival replied dryly, taking a sip of his coffee. “Elaine has a soft spot for kids.”

“Oh I see…”

“Something the matter with it?”

“No. Nothing at all. Just surprised.” Newt explained as Elaine and Credence went inside, shrugging slightly. “Credence...I’ve never seen Credence take to a woman so quickly before. He shied away from practically every female he met in England. It took my mother a few weeks for him to get used to. I assumed with the abuse he went through by his adoptive mother, even if he didn’t remember her, still lingered in his mind. The fact that he pretty much latched onto Elaine was startling. Not a bad thing though.”

“Elaine does have that gift,” Percival admitted, sounding proud, “that’s what makes her a good healer.”

Newt smiled, vaguely wondering if any of the aurors had ever seen him so doting about his family, but decided that it was unlikely. If there was one thing he had observed, Percival Graves kept his work life and family life separate, likely to protect his family from those unsavory folk at work. If he had his own family, it probably would have been the same, if not more ferocious in protecting them from those who would try to hurt them. He wondered if such an event would ever happen, and was startled by a sudden pang in his chest.

He felt his cheeks heat up and he prayed that Percival didn’t notice.

He was saved from Percival noticing as Frederick and Cora raced over to him.

“Mister Newt! Come play with us!”

“We’re playing magizoologist!”

“Then you couldn’t have picked a better playmate.” Percival joked as Newt looked over at him. “Go on, I’ll keep an eye on Rosie.” Percival remarked, and Newt offered a tiny smile, before standing up and letting himself be dragged away by Cora. He turned for a moment and perhaps it was just his imagination, but he thought that Percival was smiling.


“Well I convinced Credence to go play with Frederick, Cora, and the triplets. Freddie looked besides himself with joy that there was another boy his age to play with.” Elaine said as she entered the living room. She paused however as she spotted Percival holding Rosie, who was suckling happily on a bottle, tiny fingers flexing over the actual bottle. She couldn’t hold back the laugh that escaped though.

“And people think you're a cold-hearted man.” She finally said and he looked up before shrugging.

“Cora and Frederick practically dragged Newt outside to play with them. It’s a little too cold for a baby, so Rosie’s better in here at the moment.”

“Rosie?” She repeated with a gentle smile, having not heard Percival at all use Rosie’s nickname before. Elaine watched him with a smile as Rosie finished the bottle quickly after. And he had been worried that she would get attached. She then looked at her brother curiously

“So...about Newt. I’m curious if you-”

They paused when they heard crying and glanced out the window to see Frederick practically collide with Sebille, Cora not far behind. They couldn’t hear what the two children were saying, but in the split second of whatever Frederick and Cora were screeching, Tristan and Calvin shot off, running towards the hills. Elaine didn’t even hesitate, just held her hands out as Percival deposited Rosie to her and rushed out, looking at his sister.

“What’s going-”

“Blanche fell into the river!!”

And just as quickly Percival had taken off after his younger brother and brother-in-law, the shouts of his family echoing behind him.


It had been so quick. One second the children were playing in the trees, Newt sitting just out of the way, watching Credence as he was dragged about by Cora, the two trying to hide from Frederick. The next, he saw a flash of yellow vanish over the hill and then the two youngest Graves began to scream.

“Blanche!?”

He stood up and raced towards where the two were and he could hear water.

“There’s a river around here...pretty dry normally, but the way the weather’s been…”

“Pickett stay where you are!” Newt called out, pulling his jacket off moments before jumping into the river only hearing the disgruntled chirp for a moment before all he heard was rushing water.

Bloody hell, the water was colder and deeper than he thought.

And the current...Merlin, the current was strong, the river apparently engorged by the freshly melted snow. Fingers already numb he dove down further, searching the murky water. Fear grew larger as he felt nothing but sticks, leaves. Then he felt heavy waterlogged fabric, a bunching of sequins, a red ribbon.

Then he felt a tiny arm.

Grabbing it and pulling the small form to him, he surged upwards through the surface. He gasped as he broke through, clinging to Blanche as he swam to the edge. He stumbled out of the river, clutching the limp Blanche, coughing to drag in a shuddering breath, before he realized she was too still for it to just be stunned or in shock. Kneeling he settled the little girl’s form on the frozen ground. She didn’t stir and he realized she wasn’t breathing. Quickly he pulled his wand from sleeve in his vest and pointed to Blanche’s throat.

“Anapneo!”

Suddenly Blanche’s eyes snapped open and she gagged, rolling to the side and coughing out some water violently before she began to breathe, shivering. Newt let out a sigh of relief as she then began to cry, only to blink in surprise as she scrambled up and wrapped her arms around his neck.

“There, there...you’re alright, see?” He began to soothe, patting her back gently and her crying began to soften a bit into soft, shuddering hiccups. Until,of course, he heard yelling and both looked up to see the Graves men all rushing down where they were, the women not far behind. Newt let the little girl go and she bolted to her father, sobbing renewed. Tristan scooped his youngest child up, heedless of how soaked she was, his face haunted.

“What happened?” He asked, his voice hoarse.

“I fell in the river and…” Blanche sniffled, burying her face into the crook of her father’s neck and he continued rocking her. “...Mister Newt got me.” Blanche managed to add weakly and suddenly all eyes were on the magizoologist. He glanced up in the middle of wringing the edge of his shirt and froze, as though he had been turned to ice.

“Um…”

“You...jumped into the river? After my daughter?” Tristan said, giving Blanche to Livia, who had grabbed the jacket Percival had offered and wrapped it around Blanche before she hurried back towards the Graves residence.

“Uh, y-yes. I couldn’t very see where she was and didn’t want the chance of pulling out the w-wrong thing with a spell or-!”

Newt abruptly stopped as Tristan dragged him into a hug, holding him tightly.

“Thank you.”

“U...uh well it’s quite alright. I couldn’t let her drown exactly could I?” He wheezed, awkwardly patting the man’s back before he shuddered violently, a move that was not lost on the youngest of the Graves siblings.

“We need to get you inside.”

“Oh it’s not a bother, I’m perfectly-”

“You are not fine! You’re soaking wet!” Elaine snapped, and her expression was so similar to his mother, he automatically shut his mouth with an audible click. “Unless you want to get a cold, you head back inside this moment. And you too, Tristan!” She snapped dragging both men towards the house. Newt glanced back towards the group.
Percival had a strange expression on his face as he stared back at him. Newt couldn’t help but feel his face heat up, and he looked away before he was pulled into the living room by Elaine.

“Out with your clothes.”

“I beg your pardon?!”

“You’re not standing there in freezing soaked clothes, Newt. Out with your clothes. You too Tristan. I’ll go get some blankets.”

“Better that you do what she says. She’s a nightmare if you piss her off.” Tristan said, his voice seeming rougher than before. Newt finally did as he was told, unbuttoning his vest and then pulling his shirt off, focusing on the wall. He hesitated on pulling his trousers off. There were children and women here, it would be absolutely rude.

He blushed harder as the door opened.

“Here you go.” He heard and a warmed towel was floated in front of him.

“T-Thank you.” He muttered, his face burning.

“Don’t thank me yet. We have to hope you don’t gain a cold out of this.” Elaine said as she unfurled another towel, wrapping it around Newt.

“I’ve had to deal with hypothermia before on my own…” Newt muttered softly, but flushed as she looked at him.

“Well you aren’t alone at the moment, so kick that idea out of your head,” She refuted and then smirked lightly, “besides you did a great debt for our family.”

“I doubt Percival agrees...he looked...rather angry.”

“I highly doubt Percy is mad at you for saving his niece and goddaughter.”

“Blanche is his goddaughter?”

“He’s godfather to Blanche, Elliott, and Ansel, actually.”

“He’s their godfather? All three of them?”

Elaine chuckled.

“It wasn’t planned at first. Percival didn’t want to be the godfather to any of our kids because of the risk of him being killed in the line of duty. But when Livia was pregnant, Tristan had gone on a mission that went bad. Ran into some witches and wizards in New Orleans that dabbled in voodoo and used it for darker purposes aimed at no-maj’s and was snatched for witnessing it. Percy was the only one to believe Livia that something was wrong.”

“He’s Tristan’s brother…it’s not that surprising.”

“Yes, and that meant that he knew that his brother would have contacted his heavily pregnant wife after a few days, but Tristan’s department didn’t think that. Despite possibly getting into trouble with the Congress, Percival went to New Orleans and found Tristan about to be killed. If he hadn’t gone...the likelihood of Tristan being gone forever would have been a reality. And since his brother was the only one who took the time to go look for him, he became designated godfather.”

“So that’s why he was like that.”

“He would have been that way regardless of what child landed in the river.” She explained with a chuckle. “Granted he’s particularly protective of Blanche. Always has been since Tristan gave her to him to hold and she instantly stopped crying. We all tease him that she just knew he was going to be her favorite relative, but it certainly helped his ego after...everything that happened.”
Newt glanced at her as she watched her family coddling Blanche as they wrapped blanket after blanket around her.

“Elaine, what Percival said...he truly does feel horrible about it.” Newt remarked and she chuckled, pushing a strand of hair back behind her ear.

“I know. Regardless of what he thinks, I don’t hate him or am even angry. A little hurt, but that’s to be expected and I’ll get over it.” She replied. “I’m good at that.”
Newt glanced over at her and she offered a gentle smile.

“Now I’m going to go do a few drying spells on your shirt and vest, so get comfortable. It shouldn’t take too long, but doing it too quickly could shrink them. And since you’re taller than the majority of us...”

“I understand. Thank you.” Newt replied politely and Elaine smiled and took the shirts, leaving the room. She got downstairs and headed through the kitchen towards the laundry, pausing when she saw Percival and Tristan.

“How’s Blanche?” Percival remarked.

“Cold, upset. But otherwise, perfectly fine, thank God.” Tristan said with a sigh. “It’s a good thing that Newt decided to come. If he hadn’t been there…”

“Don’t think about the if, alright?” Percival interrupted as Sebille followed her younger sister in and paused. “Blanche is here and is fine, if a bit cold and wet.”

“He’s right Tristan.”

“Yeah...So in other words, I definitely approve of the guy you’re carrying a torch for, Percy.”

Percival choked on the gulp of water he had been in the midst of swallowing, and looked at his amused siblings as he attempted to clear his throat.

“E-Excuse me?”

“Do you think we’re blind, Percival?” Sebille asked with a chuckle. “We may not be aurors, but we still have eyes.”

“I am not carrying anyone’s torch!”

“Uh-huh, right...right...”

“Be nice you two.” Elaine said with a smile as she swiped a deviled egg as she began to wander by. “Who Percy likes or doesn’t like is up to him.”

“I said, I’m not-”

“Does have an interesting ring to it. Percival and Newt, sitting in a tree…”

“Tristan, I am warning you-”

“K-I-S-S-I-N-!”

“THAT DOES IT!”

The two sisters rolled their eyes as Tristan made a rather high-pitched squeal and rushed away, Percival hot on his heels.

Some things never changed.

Chapter Text

“Um...dare I ask what happened to Tristan?” Newt muttered as he watched the youngest son of the Graves was nursing an ice pack, entering the living room followed by his older brother. Elaine snorted.

“He couldn’t outrun his brother, that’s what.”

“Oh shut up Elaine.” Tristan grumbled and Elaine stuck her tongue out as she handed Newt a mug.

“It’s tea.” She remarked as Newt looked at it. He looked at her graciously, before taking a sip, and quietly observed the group.

“Well I guess that bump is going to keep you away from fishing.” Brigham joked, and Tristan rolled his eyes.

“Pa, I haven’t set foot on a boat since the war. I don’t think I can without puking.”

“You were involved in the war?” Newt asked and Tristan glanced at him as Percival sighed

“We all were in the war.” Percival remarked, eyeing his younger brother. “Even though I told a certain someone to stay here.”

“I was twenty-five! And all I dealt with was anti-submarine crafts and wizards fighting there. Which weren’t many.”

“I was thirty. And I don’t give a damn.”

“Don’t mind them…” Calvin remarked with a chuckle as Newt frowned, watching the two brother’s argue. “They’ve been like this since they were small. At least that’s what Sebille’s told me. It’s supposed to be endearing.”

“Oh.”

“Percival wasn’t a happy man when he found out Tristan was involved in the war.” Calvin explained. “In his mind, he was the oldest, therefore it made sense that he would go. But Tristan wanted to help, and he was an adult. No one could stop him.”

“I see. So...ah...where were you during the war?” Newt managed and Calvin chuckled.

“I was stationed out in Picardy and Somme for...about a year. I was duelling a German wizard when a can of mustard gas landed near us. I couldn’t apparate away fast enough. Next thing I know I’m in a hospital, having been found by some stretcher bearers. I was lucky all things considered. Percy nearly died.”

“The Argonne Forest and then the Battle of Lys.” Percival muttered and Newt grimaced. Yes he remembered hearing about The Argonne Forest from the other soldiers.

“The Battle of Lys is where I met Theseus actually. After that we kept running into one another at different battles.”

“That...would make sense, actually.” Newt concluded. “Theseus did go over to a lot of different places during the war to help.”

“What about you, Newt?” Tristan asked and Newt blinked.

“Pardon?”

“Were you in the war?”

“Well yes. I worked with dragons, Ukrainian Ironbellies to be more specific, in the Eastern front and I-” Newt paused as he glanced up to see Calvin, Brigham, Percival, and Tristan now staring at him in stunned confusion. The women looked at him in disbelief. “Is...something the matter?”

“I think we misheard. Did you say dragons?”

“Oh...I suppose dragon riding wasn’t really talked about on the Western Front. Not really talked about in the Eastern Front to be honest, though Theseus was rather annoyed about it when he found out.”

“What? Wait a second...you rode dragons?”

“Er...well...attempted to yes. It was an experiment to see if it could happen. It didn’t do well...but we managed to get five actually to work with us to form a unit. Mostly males of course. The females don’t take kindly to taking orders, Eira was compliant enough though for me.”

“Bull-!”

Tristan yelped as his mother smacked him on the back, giving a pointed look at the children who were all seated nearby.

“Dragon taming for a war? Can’t say I ever heard about it.”

“I don’t particularly recall an American wizard there...so that might have been why. The Central Powers wizards used Romanian Longhorns during the fights, but it wasn’t a successful trial...so I doubt it will ever be continued. You can never fully tame a dragon.” Newt muttered. Percival cocked his head to the side, staring at Newt, trying to remember anything. Then it hit him; sitting in a trench during the lull of two battles, Theseus sitting next to him, reading a letter. Him cursing loudly.

“The bloody bastard! I told him to stay out of this!!”

“Who's the bastard? Lover of yours?”

“Piss off you wanker. I’m talking about my brother. Bloody hell, he’s only twenty! What is he thinking?!”

“Now you know what I’m feeling with Tristan in this mess…”

“Dragons. He says he’s dealing with dragons...bloody hell…”

“Wait...I remember Theseus mentioning something along those lines. He was pissed to hell and back from that letter you sent him about joining the war. It was...the Basilisk Cavalry I think is what it was called?” Percival muttered finally.

“You’re pulling my leg. Seriously? You rode a dragon.” Tristan repeated.

Newt seemed a bit insulted at Tristan’s insinuation of a lie, and pulled out the familiar journal that Percival, at this point, knew he carried photos in and after flipping through several finally pulled one out.

“This is Eira.”

Percival stared at the younger Newt in the picture, wide-eyed and lost looking, seeming to be too young to carry the significance of the uniform he wore. But directly behind him was what could be considered a beautiful Ukranian Ironbelly, powerful, strong, and likely could tear the man that was in front of her in half in a second. Instead her visible eye was blinking lazily in the picture, then nudging Newt. The younger Newt, looked back and finally the familiar smile broke on his face.

“Holy….shhhhh….strawberries. I was going to say strawberries!” Tristan exclaimed at his mother’s glare. Newt shrugged.

“Eira’s in the Romanian Dragon Sanctuary now...from what some of the dragonologists have told me, she’s a proud mother now.”

“How sweet.” Elaine remarked and Newt glanced at her when she gave a gentle smile. “You obviously seem to care and worry about her. I doubt the both of you would have come out relatively unscathed if there wasn’t some sort of trust.”

Newt flushed lightly, ducking his head down to avoid eye contact. Elaine glanced at her oldest brother, managing to hold back her chuckle at the besotted look that was etched around his face. She nudged Percival with her hip, and when he glanced up, whatever was obvious on her face made his cheeks color slightly and he looked away.

Oh no...he wasn’t carrying a torch for Newt at all, she mused sarcastically as she went to the kitchen. At this point, Percival was probably head over heels for the magizoologist.

Now if only he would admit it to himself.


“Uncle Percy, is Mister Newt staying?”

“He had to go take care of his other creatures...so he can’t stay the night. But you and your family is heading home soon...” Percival remarked, looking at Cora curiously. “Is there something you wanted to ask him?”

“No, silly!” She chirped, giggling. “Is he gonna stay with you forever?”

Percival paused as he pulled on his coat, blinking several times. When he looked back down, he wasn’t all that surprised to see that the rest of his nieces and nephews had now crowded around Cora. They were little sneaks when they wanted to, even if it drove the older generation up a wall at times.

“Cause we likes him a lot, Unca P!” Elliot chirped happily.

“And you likes him lots too!!” Ansel added and Percival suddenly had difficulty breathing as he struggled to swallow.

“Now...that’s…that’s not...”

“Doncha like him, Unca P?” Blanche asked and Percival rubbed his forehead.

“I like him perfectly fine.” He hurriedly said.

“So if you like him, and he likes you, shouldn’t you stay with each other?” Frederick asked, cocking his head to the side. Percival felt the back of his neck beginning to burn.

The heavens seemed answer his silent pleading as Elaine turned around the corner, blinking as she spotted her older brother being ganged up on by his nieces and nephews.

“What are you five doing?”

“Asking Uncle Percy about Mister Newt. He really likes him.” Cora responded. Elaine blinked and looked back at Percival with a smirk. But she seemed to take mercy on him.

“Now you five, leave your uncle alone. Who he likes is his own business.” She scolded. “And your uncle needs to head back home soon.”

“Aaaawww…”

“I’ll be here for Christmas.” Percival promised, mouthing a thank you to Elaine who smiled.

“Now...if you all head to the kitchen, I’ll get you each a cookie.”

“Cookie!!” The children screamed and rushed off towards the kitchen.

“...thanks.” Percival remarked.

“It’s not a problem. They do have a point though.”

“Elaine…”

“I’m not saying you have to do anything, Percy. However, you do like him. Or at least find him interesting.”

Percival was silent.

“What you choose to do with that admittance is up to you. It’s not something for me to decide.” Elaine added. “But you should make your decision soon. You know this family would love you no matter who you chose to court. Man or woman, we love you for you and Newt is a nice person...but he’s not going to make a first move. He’s been hurt before.”

“Elli, what have we said-”

“I didn’t and I wouldn’t have had to. Just his habits alone were evidence enough.” Elaine replied easily. She looked at her brother and then sighed.

“Just be happy with whatever choice you make, Percy.” She finished. “Not with the choice that you think will make everyone happy.”

With that she turned around and headed to the kitchen, leaving her brother in the foyer in the silence.


He sighed as he entered his home after apparating away from the Graves Estate, his sister’s words echoing in his head. He walked down the hall, but paused when he realized that other than Credence, there was no one else there.

“Where’s Newt and Rosie?”

“Oh in the case.”

“The case?”

“Mhm. He needed to feed the creatures.”

Percival withheld the curse that yearned to come out. He was supposed to be trying to not get a cold.

“Want to go in?”

Percival blinked as Credence opened the case, and began to climb down, vanishing after a second. He stared at the case that lay open on the floor, hesitating. Credence poked his head back
out of it, beaming.

“You coming?”

Holding back the panic of being in a closed in space again, Percival finally nodded, and Credence vanished again and after another moment, he finally climbed down the ladder. He stared forward, bracing himself for suffocating darkness, or four walls close together. However when he turned, he was surprised to see a full room of a shack filled with herbs, and cabinets. He blinked several times, unsure if this was a trick of the light or his mind was making the space up, and the area was actually smaller.

“C’mon Mister Graves!”

“Coming….I’m coming.”

He followed Credence’s voice, and after a moment of hesitation, pushed the door opened. He blinked several times.

Stunned.

He didn’t know what he had been expecting, but it certainly wasn’t rolling hills, skies, all of different environments. Percival couldn’t just keep his gaze on one area, eyes roving a mile a minute from the billywigs flying overhead, to diricrawls rushing past the door.

“What on…?” He only managed, slowly walking down the steps, grass crunching under his shoes as he continued to look around.

“Mister Scamander, Mister Graves is here!”

“You’ve actually convinced him to come down here?”

Percival turned to where Credence and Newt’s voices were and felt his heart leap into his throat. Newt was directly in next to a nundu. A nundu that was sniffing at the sling wrapped around his chest and he could just see Rosie’s head peeking out from the sling.

“That’s...that’s a nundu.”

“Hm? Oh yes, Matilda is a sweetheart.”

“You’re feeding and petting a nundu while Rosie is strapped to your chest.”

“...yes?” Newt replied in confusion as Percival opened and closed his mouth several times. “Matilda is quite protective of children and she seems to like Rosie pretty well.”

“You’ve done this before?”

“I had to let Rosie meet all of them or the creatures would get confused as to the other scent on my clothes. I did the same with Credence when he started to come down here.” Newt explained and paused for a moment. “She’s partial to Dougal I think. He plays peek-a-boo with her a lot when I’m dealing with the Occamies.”
Percival was still staring at the nundu stunned. ‘Matlida’ seem to ignore him, instead chuffing lightly at Rosie’s form, nuzzling the tiny girl’s back. If he didn’t know better, Percival could swear the damn thing was purring.

“You do realize that nundu’s are illegal, highly illegal, right?”

“I would have returned her back to Africa into her territory, but the chief of the nearby village said under no certain terms was she to return under the threat of war. And letting her loose in any other area wouldn’t work as she would have found a way back to her territory. She takes a tonic every day to nullify the poisons in her throat, so she’s practically harmless.”
Harmless was not the word that Percival was thinking. But, deciding that arguing could possibly anger the animal and have it attack any of them, he decided to let it go. For the moment.

“How…How did you manage this?”

“Simple expansion charms,” Newt said, rocking forward onto the balls of his feet. “Well, not simple, it was actually quite, complicated. Had to weave several different spells, making sure they didn’t clash together and well...uh...”

It seemed Newt finally realized who he was exactly talking to and Percival watched as the man’s face began to glow a bright red.

“All legal, I can assure you.” He squeaked out. “And the majority of the creatures here, I have permits for.”

Percival was silent, and after a few minutes, Newt turned a little and cupped his hands over his mouth and let out a loud echoing bellow, followed swiftly by a disgruntled wail from Rosie. He watched Newt walk calmly over, avoiding eye contact with him and mutely, Percival followed Newt to a night sky desert looking biodome. He became aware of thundering footsteps. Suddenly a large creature was bearing towards them. Percival stiffened, and his hand went to his wand.

“It’s alright...promise!” Newt said hurriedly, and the creature slid to a stop in front of them. Immediately, it began to nuzzle Newt, before tentacle-like appendages curled around Newt and then seemed to fret over Rosie, the creature rumbling lightly as a smaller creature bleated next to the large one.

“I know, I know. You’re fretting over her like you would do after your own calf. She’s perfectly alright, as you can tell.” Newt cooed and shifted the sling to where Rosie was visible. The creature made a bellowing sound before its’ attention turned to Percival. Swiftly, the content bellowing turned into a growl and it seemed to swell in size.

“No, no! He’s alright. He’s a friend.” Newt hurriedly said, moving in between the two and the creature seemed to observe Percival before its’ attention changed to the calf next to it. Wisely, Newt moved away.

“Sorry about that...Glenda has a calf and two more on the way. She tends to be protective over any of the younglings that cross around here.”

“She’s…”

“A Graphorn. She and her mate are the last breeding pair in existence. The breed has practically been killed off to use their tusks, horns, and other parts of it for potions. If I hadn’t rescued them, in all likelihood there wouldn’t be anymore alive.”

“Well they seem to be doing a fine job in breeding. Likely thanks to your care of them.” Percival admitted and he watched as Newt seemed to beam with pride, before he followed him around the enclosures and noticed that all the creatures seemed to relax and calm when they spotted Rosie.

“...where’s Credence?” He asked after a little bit and Newt seemed to chuckle.

“Likely with the mooncalves. He’s rather taken to them and the same with the mooncalves. Their habitat is right through here,” Newt remarked when they reached the end of the main habitats. He nudged the curtain-like flap open with his shoulder, looking back at Percival. Percival paused, looking back at the habitats, then back to where Newt stood, incredulous.

“There’s more?” he asked.

Newt smiled, shyly.

“Come on.”

Percival hesitated for a moment as Newt ducked inside, before steeling himself and pushing the flap open and moving in.

The darkness swallowed him, and he had only a moment of panic before artificial stars began to light up the room. In the distance he could hear chirping and cooing, followed by soft laughter.

“...well I’ll be damned.” He finally muttered, staring.

“I had to create this place just for them. A lot of the other creatures don’t care much for the dark other than the artificial night. Mooncalves only really come out during the night, especially on full moons.” Newt explained and then gestured to the small herd of mooncalves that were all crowding around Credence, cooing at him and nuzzling the tiny boy’s chest. “They’re being exceptionally nice today. Just had a new litter and all.”

Credence giggled a one mooncalf rubbed its head on his stomach, nuzzling and chirping lightly, the nearby bucket empty.

“I see Credence has already fed them. Probably why they’re so active right now.” Newt said with a chuckle. Percival glanced at Newt and stared at the man who was observing Credence and the mooncalves, with such a soft expression on his face, something in Percival’s chest seemed to squeeze like a vice and made it hard to breathe. It was later that night, after everyone had gone to bed that Percival found himself unable to.

“You do like him. Or find him interesting…”

Elaine’s comments echoed in his head and he swallowed, before looking away, his heart beating rapidly, but this time not out of panic.

“...Shit.” He muttered.


Percival knew that babies cried. He remembered when Tristan wouldn’t stop crying for nearly a day straight, or when Elaine beat the record and cried for nearly an entire week nonstop. It hadn’t been fun then, and that was one aspect that certainly hadn’t changed even now that he was older.

“Rosie…” He gruffly said as the baby girl whimpered from the lounger she was in. She began to cry again and sighing he finally went over and picked her up, looking at her in exasperation. Credence barely even noticed, concentrating on drawing.

“Yes, I agree that paperwork is horrible, but it’s nothing to cry over.”

She whimpered, her bottom lip quivering as she stared at him with shining eyes, promising more tears.

He couldn’t exactly blame her, he supposed. Her entire normal schedule had been thrown off course. Despite their best efforts, Newt had gotten a small head cold, likely from refusing to rest the night and going down into his case to feed his creatures. As a result, Percival had been adamant that until he wasn’t contagious, or at least until the Pepperup Potion had finished eradicating the cold from Newt’s body, Rosie couldn’t be in the same room with the magizoologist. Which meant that the usual schedule of being with Newt during the day was out of the question.

He knew that. Newt agreed to it…

But that didn’t mean that Rosie was going to take it without a fight.

“I know I’m not Newt, and this definitely isn’t his case, so you’re not a happy girl. However, it’s not like you’ve never been in here before.”
Rosie squirmed a little bit, clutching at his coat and staring at him with innocent eyes. He sighed and maneuvered her to where she was cradled in his other arm, and continued to read the reports, writing responses when it was needed. After a little bit, he became aware that she was no longer whining, and looking down, found she had fallen fast asleep, one tiny fist clutching his coat tightly as the other found refuge in her mouth.

He couldn’t stop the amused smile that crossed briefly on his face.

“SIR! I-”

Jason Kimbley froze as he entered the room as Percival’s glare was the promise of death and his jaw clicked shut. Rosie shifted sleepily against Percival’s chest, snuffling a little bit before growing quiet again.

“I just got her to go sleep.” Percival warned under his breath.

“R...right, sorry sir.” Kimbley said barely above a whisper, almost in awe. In truth, he couldn’t remember a time that the Director looked so...domestic.

“What is it?” Percival muttered under his breath as Rosie snuggled into his jacket.

“Madame President is waiting for you. Apparently you have a meeting with her and some...councilmen?” Kimbley said and Percival muttered a curse under his breath, before standing.

“Right.”

Credence looked up from where he was drawing and scrambled up and after Percival. After walking a little bit, he spotted Seraphina standing by the entrance.

“I’m surprised you didn’t just come into my office.”

“I was unaware if you were...otherwise occupied.” Seraphina remarked, glancing down at the two children before looking back up at him.

“Yes, I was guarding at the moment, forgive the tardiness.” Percival remarked and Seraphina cocked her head to the side as she looked at the infant girl.

“I don’t think the councilmen will approve of her being in the meeting. Even if she is too young to understand the politics and she was assigned to you.”

“...I suppose not.” Percival muttered.

“Perhaps you could get Ms. Goldstein or her sister to look over the two during the meeting.”

“I can hold her till then, Mister Graves.” Credence offered, hands lifting expectantly. Percival could note the sudden change in Seraphina’s demeanor, her shoulders tightening as she watched Credence carefully.

Something akin to annoyance shot through his stomach, settling uncomfortably in the bottom of his gut.

“Alright. You know what to do, right?”

“Mhm. Mister Scamander showed me!” Credence said, and bending slightly, Percival slowly deposited Rosie into Credence’s arms. The young boy’s expression was serious as he made sure his arms were in the right place as Rosie yawned and her eyes fluttered open sleepily.

“I’ll go get Goldstein and be back in a moment.” Percival remarked and turned around, striding back into the Security Offices.

Silence then...

“She likes it when you press on her nose.”

Seraphina jumped, looking down to where the baby was and her heart skittered when she saw the obscurus...Credence...leaning over and looking down at the baby in his arms, who was cooing softly at him. He looked up for a moment, shyly, before looking back down, beaming at the baby.

“What?”

“Her nose. See?”

She had to hold back the flinch as he lifted his hand and pressed his finger lightly on the baby girl’s nose, and watched as the little girl momentarily went cross-eyed before breaking into a squeal and giggling, stretching towards him.

Seraphina was quiet, before looking at Credence, observing him in a different light. Yes...what he had done could not be forgiven...but still...he was just an innocent boy.

She looked away when she heard footsteps and saw Percival, Tina, and after a few moments Theseus walk down the hall.

“Hello Credence!” Theseus called out and the young boy beamed. Seraphina glanced at Percival.

“I’ll come and pick them up later.”

“Yes Sir.” Tina responded with a nod and Percival followed Seraphina away. Theseus then looked at the group.

“So...who’s hungry?”


“Are those any good?” Theseus asked as he watched Tina buy one for her and Credence.

“Pardon?”

“Hotdogs. Are they any good?”

“Well I like them. You’ve never had a hotdog before?”

“They don’t sell them in London. Unless it’s like haggis. Haggis they sell.”

“What’s haggis?”

“It’s...ah...never mind, I don’t think that’d be something to your...palette.”

“How would you know that?” Tina haughtily asked and Theseus’s brow rose.

“You’d like a pudding containing a sheep's heart, liver, and lungs; minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices, salt, mixed with stock, and traditionally encased in the animal's stomach?”

Tina’s face turned white with a tinge of green.

“Alright. Never mind. Who would come up with something so disgusting?”

“It’s a Scottish delicacy.” Theseus replied with a chuckle. “Though it’s a delicacy that a person has to have a certain like for.”

“Well hotdogs aren’t anything like that.”

“So it’s good?”

“I think it’s good. Queenie always says I shouldn’t eat them for lunch.” Tina responded, handing Credence a hotdog. Theseus grinned.

“Well I’ll take your word for it then. Someone from this country is sure to know more about food here than me.”

Tina flushed.

“Now you’re teasing me.” She muttered and he shook his head.

“Not at all.” Theseus said kindly. “Things here are different. That’s one thing that’s true everywhere, even if people don’t think that’s the case. Makes coming here and meeting new people all the more interesting.”

He glanced back at her and she felt her heart skip a beat and she took a bite of her hotdog, pointedly looking away from him. A few moments later, she jumped when a napkin was pressed lightly against her face. She looked at Theseus, surprised at the gentle expression that was on his face.

“Had some mustard on your face.” He explained and she blushed softly.

“Oh. Thanks.”

Credence watched the two as he munched on the hotdog, before looking around. There were a lot of people out right then, probably to finish last minute shopping. However, he paused when he spotted a group of people gathering around a banner, listening to someone preach about the sins of America.

Something in him squirmed uneasily.

“Something is stalking our city, wreaking destruction and then disappearing without a trace…we have to fight!”

“Hear my words and heed my warning, and laugh if you dare! Witches live among us!”

“...Take it off, Credence.”

“M...Ma-”

“I am NOT your Ma! Your mother was a wicked, unnatural woman!!”

Screams echoing, and darkness...that suffocating darkness surrounding him again. Light.

Pain.

Nothing but pain.

Credence scrambled backwards, running into Tina’s legs. Theseus and Tina looked down as Credence spun around and latched himself to Tina’s legs, burying his face into her coat.

“Credence?”

“I wanna go…” His muffled voice pleaded and she blinked in concern.

“Credence, what’s the matter?” She asked as she looked around, pausing when she spotted the rally.

“Can we go, please?” He asked again, his voice sounding desperate. She frowned and picked him up, and he practically attached himself to her.

“Of course we can.” She said, and promptly carried the little boy away from the rally, her heart hammering its way into her throat. Memories...memories were something that Newt had talked about with Tina. Credence couldn’t remember practically anything that had happened in his life, but Newt theorized that some memories were just blocked, likely by him due to the trauma he had gone through. But they could still be there.

Waiting for something to unlock them.

Theseus looked over at Tina, frowning in concern.

“The rally?”

“...I think he remembered the rallies that Mary Lou made him go to with her. And maybe a bit more of Mary Lou.”

“Dammit.” Theseus muttered. “Want to switch?”

“No. I’m fine. Besides Rosie’s comfortable with you.” Tina replied, glancing down at Rosie. He frowned, but nodded and the two continued to walk in silence back to the Woolworth Building. After they entered the offices, Theseus placed Rosie back in her lounger, the little girl cooing softly. Tina placed Credence in a chair nearby.

“You alright Credence?” Theseus finally asked and silently Credence nodded. Theseus didn’t seem convinced, but ruffled Credence’s hair nonetheless. Tina looked at Credence worriedly, before sighing as she looked at the stack of paper on her desk.

“I wasn’t gone for more than thirty minutes.”

“Ah the woes of being an auror. Endless paperwork.” A voice chirped and Tina looked up to see another auror, Beatrice glancing up from her desk. Another female auror smiled at Tina, before noticing the lounger.

“Who’s the baby?” Marie asked, gaining the attention of all the nearby aurors. Tina groaned.

“This is Rosalind, remember? The baby that my sister and Newt found in that tree.”

“Oh that’s right!” Marie exclaimed and Credence glanced up at her in confusion as she walked over. Rosie blinked several times as the other aurors surrounded the infant, Credence watching them curiously.

“Oh she’s so adorable.” Marie cooed.

“Kind of squishy looking I say.” One of the men remarked and Marie groaned.

“Honestly Bill. Can you be so rude?”

“What? I’m just saying...” Bill muttered, glaring at another auror, Erasmus who was snorting and trying to hold back his laughter. A third man was looking at the Rosie curiously.

“So this is the baby that the Director has to watch over?”

“Mhm.” Tina replied, flicking through the papers, smiling slightly as Rosie gurgled in content, letting out a big yawn, and rubbing her eyes. Marie offered the little girl a binky, which Rosie graciously began to suckle on. Seconds later, Tina practically jumped out of her chair, looking at Theseus.

“Gnarlak’s been spotted!”

“What? Really?”

“Yeah.” Tina remarked. “And there’s no telling when he’ll be spotted again. He’s been avoiding me ever since last year. If we don’t find him again, there’s a high chance we won’t see him for awhile, or any of my contacts will tell me where he is again.”

Tina glanced at the kids nervously. Bringing them with the two of them was a bad idea. But Graves had said...

“We’ll watch them.” Beatrice offered, knowing the look on Tina’s face. Tina blinked as the group of five all grinned at her.

“Are you sure? I mean they’re kids.”

“Yeah? We can handle that.”

“Yeah I mean c’mon, three of us are men, we can handle a bunch of kids.” Bill remarked and Tina rolled her eyes. Marie copied her eyes rolling but smile nonetheless.

“We don’t mind in the slightest.” Marie said, tickling Rosie under her chin, earning a giggle. “They seem like absolute angels anyway.”

“...Are you really sure?”

“Positive. Go on and show Mr. Scamander where to go. We can handle things here.”

Tina still looked a bit unsure. Beatrice grinned.

“Go on. What’s the worst that could happen?”


She apparently had spoken too soon as it felt like only moments that Tina had hurried out of the offices that Rosie practically lobbed her binky across the room and let out a wail. And for the love of them, they couldn’t get her to cease.

“Oh for the love of God, make her stop.” Erasmus groaned as Rosie’s wailing echoed in the room.

“I’m trying! She was fine a little while ago!!” Bill hissed. Beatrice sighed and finally glared at them.

“Well has she been fed?”

“Tina said before the Director went to his meeting! And probably when Auror Scamander had her!”

“And she was pretty much napping until a little while ago!!” Erasmus added as Rosie’s face seemed to beginning to turn purple.

“What about a diaper change?” Marie suggested and the men looked at her as though she had lost her mind. There was suddenly silence as they heard the ever familiar sounds of a bowel movement echo in the room and then Rosie began to calm down, her expression relaxing almost instantly.

“...oh.”

“Now this...” Marie said with a snort, “this is a job meant for men.”

“Oh god...she reeks!!”

“I can practically taste it!!” Bill gagged.

“You are all being overdramatic.” Erasmus groused and took Rosie out of Bill’s hands. “It’s just shit. It can’t smell that-”

Suddenly Erasmus became quiet as he took a whiff, and the other aurors looked at him.

“...Um...Erasmus?” Bill asked as the other auror just stood there, still as stone and staring at the wailing child’s bum. Ever so slowly Bill withdrew Rosie from Erasmus’s grip. As though a gust of wind had blown through, Erasmus pitched backwards, flopping onto the ground in a dead faint.

“...and he said we were being overdramatic.” Silvester snorted and Credence barely held down the quiet laugh. Soon the Rosie began to fuss again and the men looked at one another in grim resolution.

A little while later, Percival came in to see a strange sight.

Erasmus Cullen, Bill Fletwock, and Silvester Kempley were all slumped over their desks, Rosie snug in the baby lounger in between them, sucking happily on a pacifier, and Credence nearby drawing on some loose leaf paper.

“...I thought those two were with Theseus and Tina.” Percival remarked.

“They had to go out for a little bit. Something about Mr. Scamander’s case.”

“And I wasn’t informed because...?”

“You were in a meeting with the President. Besides, I think Tina was just showing Mr. Scamander where to go.”

“...I suppose that’s fine. So were they too much?” Percival asked as he picked up the Rosie, who waved her hands towards him squirming a bit to get comfortable he settled her in the crook of his arm.

“Oh not at all, Director.” Marie stated with a snort. “We just answered the question on how many aurors it takes to change a diaper.”

The three men groaned in exasperation as Rosie yawned in Percival’s arm, looking as innocent as she could, and snuggled back into Percival’s side.

Chapter Text

Theseus glanced around as he followed Tina down the stairwell to The Blind Pig. Curious, he watched Tina.

“You might want to change.” Tina replied, taking her wand out, and Theseus watched as as she flicked her wand and her uniform melted away to reveal a knee-high navy blue dress. He stared for a few moments, before clearing his throat, and with a quick flick, his outfit changed to something he wore out.

“This alright?” He asked and she looked at him before pushing her hair back.

“You look perfectly fine. Come on.” She murmured. Theseus blinked, cocking his head to the side in curiosity, before following Tina inside after the door opened.
Jazz music filled the air, and Theseus’s nose wrinkled at the smell of smoke, alcohol, and sweat. Just like a pub, but without a brawl possibly happening.

“Ever come here?”

“When I need information.”

“Not for fun though?”

“I’ve arrested more than half of the people here.” Tina replied as they worked their way through the crowd. “Not really the best place to go to dance.” She added as she sat down, him next to her.

“Well have you ever gone out to dance? Not here specifically, but anywhere?”

“Once or twice…” she admitted with a snort, “usually with Queenie, I’m not really one invited by men to go out dancing.”

“Well that’s a bloody shame.” Theseus remarked. She blushed brightly.

“I’m not that good of a dancer, so-” She stopped as Theseus pressed a hand lightly to hers and looked up. Her heart jumped to her throat at his expression.

“I sincerely doubt you aren’t a good dancer.” Theseus replied with a grin. “After all this is over, I might just ask you to such a dance.”

Tina’s heart jumped again and she coughed to clear her throat as she heard footsteps coming to their table and managed to push her blush away just in time as a familiar goblin walked to where they were, pausing for a moment, his eyes narrowing.

“Goldstein.”

“Gnarlak.”

“I’m surprised to see you running around here again. After what happened last year-”

“Yes, aren’t we all surprised.” Theseus muttered and Gnarlak glanced at him.

“Who’s the wise-guy, Goldstein? Your new daddy?”

Tina’s face burned as her eyes narrowed.

“Theseus Scamander, actually.” Theseus instead replied with his characteristic grin.

“Scamander? Related to the other Scamander bird, Goldstein?”

“Older brother.”

“...hmph. Can’t say I see the family resemblance all too much.” Gnarlak remarked, his eyes boring into Theseus. “Your brother couldn’t keep eye contact for more than fifteen seconds.”

“Well aren’t we-”

“We’re here for information, Gnarlak.” Tina interruupted, looking at Theseus with a warning. The British auror shrugged, but remained quiet.

“About?”

“You’ve heard of the missing children?”

“Who hasn’t? It’s got some of the families here worried.” Gnarlak replied, taking a sip of his drink. “Ruining business and all that.”

“Have you heard anything from any of your friends on possible culprits or location? Or anything Grindelwald related?”

“Knowledge has its price.”

“Gnarlak, you’d be stopping a madman from snatching kids off the streets.” Tina implored.

“A pat on the back won’t pay any bills, Goldstein.” Gnarlak replied, letting a puff of smoke from his cigar out from the corner of his mouth. “You know that. Got any bowtruckles this time?”

“I-”

“This is actually a nice place you’re running here, Gnarlak.”

Tina glanced over at Theseus who was swirling a drink, his expression amused, but his eyes glittered of warning.

“...Thanks…?”

“How much does it cost you to run this?”

Gnarlak was quiet, glaring at Theseus.

“Theseus…”

“It can’t be all that easy to keep funds running. And I’ve heard along the grapevine that a certain goblin hasn’t been paying his dues.”

Tina looked back at Gnarlak and then at Theseus. The goblin’s face was bloodless, his grip hard on the shot glass.

“Now I know the goblins are fellows who don’t like their money to be hidden from them. That’s how you got your fingers all jacked up,” Theseus remarked and Tina swallowed, looking at Theseus, “so here’s our ‘trade’. You tell Ms. Goldstein here the information she needs, and I will conveniently forget to mention that I’ve seen you to Gringotts goblins when I return to England.”

“...Everything?”

“If the information is solid and you don’t backstab us? Then yes. Every single thing about this lovely establishment will not be heard from my mouth.” Theseus promised with a characteristic grin. Gnarlak seemed to stew over this, a hand swishing a drink in thought.

“...word around the docks is that there’s been some funny business near Pier 13. Strange items going in, boxes. Things like that. Can’t be sure, but I’ve seen some of my friends working around there.”

“You didn’t verify?”

“Not going to risk it. I’ve got my own livelihood. And it pays to stay out of other’s messes.” Gnarlak replied with a sneer. Theseus and Tina glanced at one another. “That good enough for ya?”

Theseus glanced at Tina, who nodded silently.

“Yup. Pleasure doing business with you, old chap.” Theseus replied with a grin that the goblin didn’t return. The pair of aurors stood and walked away, the goblin glaring at them the entire way.

“Have to say, the nightlife here is certainly more...lively than in England.”

Tina chuckled lightly, but couldn’t stop her heart skipping as he gingerly took her hand and the pair exited the speakeasy to apparate away.


“Hiya Mr. Kowalski!”

Jacob glanced up and smiled as Credence and Queenie came into the bakery, the latter carrying a familiar, equally precious bundle.

“Your turn to babysit, hon?” He asked as he pecked a kiss on Queenie’s cheek, the young witch blushing ever so softly and her face breaking into a genial smile.

“Mhm.”

“I’m curious, does the Wizarding Community have daycare?”

“We do. But I don’t think Mister Graves is really all that keen in letting either of these two out of the care of any of us close to the case, and I’m guessing Newt doesn’t know that on the 200th floor we have a daycare.”
Rosie squirmed around, cooing gently as she gave a gummy smile to Jacob, who returned it with a grin.

“And you brought another polite young woman to my shop, Ms. Goldstein. A pleasure to meet both of your acquaintance.” He joked and Queenie giggled as Credence looked up at the pair, cocking his head curiously. “How was your night?” Jacob asked

“Quiet. Tina got home rather late because of her mission...or maybe because of Theseus. I don’t know.” She said with a coy chuckle and Jacob’s brow rose, remembering meeting the older man when he had snuck into the apartment to have dinner with Queenie. He was...not what he had expected given Newt’s personality. But it was clear that he cared about Newt’s safety, and that was good enough for him.

“Well I just finished another dozen of buns, so let me clean up and we’ll have lunch.” He said, pecking Queenie lightly on the cheek. She giggled before her attention changed to Rosie, who suddenly began to fuss, squirming around in her blanket.

“Oh darling...are you upset because you can’t taste any of these yet?” She teased gently and the little girl began to squirm even more as Queenie smiled gently at her, shushing her soothingly. Jacob watched as the young woman kept shushing the little girl, almost glowing in the sunlight outside the store windows.

Slowly he imagined one morning waking up to seeing Queenie holding a child of their own like that.

When she glanced in his direction, he felt his face heat up and he looked down at the demiguise pastries that he was setting up.

He barely glanced up when the bell to the entrance opened up.

“Henry, did you remember to get some more eggs? We-”

He looked up and to his surprise a young woman stood there, blinking at him with light brown eyes, that seemed to have a sort vacancy in them.

“Oh welcome to Kowalski’s Quality Baked Goods!” Jacob said with a grin

“H-hello…” She muttered softly, and he could barely understand her through the thick accent.

“Anything catch your interest or just browsing?”

“Oh I’m just-”

Jacob glanced at the woman after she paused, and noticed she was now staring at Queenie and Rosie as though she had been smacked. He looked back at Queenie, confused as Rosie began to fuss again, this time not calming down to Queenie’s gentle shushing. The woman scrambled away, rushing out of the door frantically and hurrying down the corner.

“What was that all about?” Jacob asked softly.

“I haven’t the foggiest.” Queenie muttered as she worked on calming Rosie down. “I’ve never met her before.”

“Did you get anything from her mind?”

“It was really...jumbled. Confusion, hurt. I couldn’t really get a clear picture. Just that she was...in pain.”

“Pain?”

“Mhm.” Queenie said, rocking Rosie gently in her arms. The little girl snuffled lightly, gnawing on her fist.

“Was she a witch?”

“Maybe?” Queenie said worriedly. “I’m not sure, she’s not one I’ve ever met before in the Woolworth Building. And that accent. It was french.”

“Are the laws of the relationships between wizarding folk the same in different places?”

“No. Thankfully.”

“She didn’t really seem that interested in me or you though.” Queenie said. “Like she was thinking about what type of bread she was going to get, and then she just went blank, before running off.”

“Strange.” Jacob muttered, looking at her in worry. She shrugged.

“Maybe she was surprised by a little baby being behind the counter. I mean I won’t get near the oven or anything when I’m holding Rosie, but some people worry about that.”

“Probably.” Jacob remarked, but it was still nagging at him. The woman had looked at them like a man trapped in a desert would look at water. “Let me walk you home today alright?” Jacob said and Queenie gave a tinkling laugh.

“Jacob, I’ll be fine.”

“I know you will be, but just to rest my worries?” He suggested and she gave him a gentle look.

“We’d be running a risk, Jacob.”

“I know, but a polite man wouldn’t let a lovely woman walk home with two children all on her own. Besides we’re already having lunch together, a little more walking won’t kill me..” He replied with an easygoing smile. She blinked and then smiled gently.

“Alright.”

Jacob smiled at her, pushing a strand of her hair behind her ear, something easing the panic in his gut. Still as he and the other three exited the bakery to get lunch, he couldn’t stop looking over his shoulder, unable to shake the feeling of being watched.


“Hopefully Gnarlak’s intel was good.”

“Pretty sure it was.” Tina whispered.

“No offense, but he is the goblin who sold you and Newt out last year.”

“He did lead us to Dougal.”

“And nearly led to you all being arrested and possibly killed.”

Tina was quiet in agreement as they continued towards the warehouse. It had been easy enough to get permission from Percival to go there, though he himself was forced to stay due to Seraphina still refusing to let him go completely into the field. Still, it wasn’t that hard of a bust. It was a known area of where smugglers used to drop off their cargo. Even if it turned out to be a bust for their cases, there was probably something here, Tina mused dryly. Rather routine all things considered.

“Not many aurors would threaten to do that, you know.” She whispered as they tiptoed around a corner.

“Do what?”

“Threaten to get the other Gringotts goblins to go after him.”

“Oh that.”

“How did you know he was hiding from the goblins anyways?”

“Oh, I didn’t.” Tina paused, and looked at Theseus who stopped for a moment, and looked at her. “What?”

“You...guessed?”

“Pretty much.” Theseus replied with a snort. “Not too hard though. A goblin who runs a business that is known for the less than savory folk wouldn’t be willing to let aurors into their business, even if it does get the occasional look away. He’s trying to make himself seem more important than he is or he’s trying to get some extra protection without actually purchasing it.” Theseus concluded. “Goblins are notoriously hard on those who don’t give back their payments.”

“So you blackmailed him.”

“Blackmail makes it sound worse. I’m not breaking my word. If any goblins in England ask, I haven’t seen a goblin with his hands broken backwards in the USA.” Tina blinked and then smirked, before the two advanced into the warehouse. Her nose wrinkled at the smell of mildew and decaying fish. Slowly they crept forward, and went down a set of steps, glancing around at the walls, cracked and slowly on the beginnings of breaking down completely. Theseus paused as they reached a door, and they could easily spot in the aged wood a familiar mark.

“That’s the one Grindelwald…”

“Yeah. He probably had the time here to make some headquarters for followers here when he was impersonating Percy. Wouldn’t raise too many heads if Percival Graves was out patrolling. Little did anyone know he was finding locations to make Grindelwald followers.” Theseus muttered as his wand flicked around silently, and she realized he was testing it to see if there were any traps. After a few moments, he nudged the door opened and it creaked noisily open. In there were shelves upon shelves of vials and pots, many of the pots having dead or near death plants. The vials seemed to hold different materials, from liquid to what looked like hair or fur. On a desk was several pieces of parchment, strewn all over the surface.

“This is definitely Johann and Monika’s place of work.” Theseus muttered, nose wrinkling at some of the herbs and the crazed notes. “Some of these poisons are so old, it’s no wonder that some of the healers couldn’t figure it out right away.”

“Mhm. It doesn’t help answer who they were with, or why they were here though.” Tina replied, glancing at the workspace. She paused though when she spotted a small bassinet and rocking chair a little ways away from the workshop.

“...Well, we can now assume correctly that Rosie was their biological daughter or at least being cared for by them.” Theseus muttered, but when she glanced at him, his expression was grim.

“It’s just sick. They had a baby with them. And she was near all these poisons that they were going to use for who knows what. If she had ingested any of these...”

“Sometimes people don’t always think straight.” Theseus said, his voice sullen. “When you’re devoted, you can excuse a whole lot of shit.”

“Still…” She trailed off when she saw some unfinished letters. Gingerly she picked up and began to look over the letter. It was in a different language, German, she realized dryly. Of course. The one language she hadn’t used a language translation spell for.

She stuck her tongue out as she began to read the letter, trying to decipher some words. Kinder...kinder meant children, if she remembered correctly. One set of word she automatically recognized from other confiscated writings of Grindelwald was ‘Allgemeinwohl’...greater good.

No doubt about it, they were talking about something Grindelwald related.

Her brows furrowed as she read one word.

“Theseus, do you know German?”

“A little. It’s not my forte, since we haven’t really been allies for a while.” Theseus replied, going over to her and looking at the letter.

“Have you ever heard the phrase ‘Verwenden sie als Zahlung’?”

“No. But I do know that zahlung means payment.”

“Payment?” Tina hissed out, horror filling her veins. “Is Grindelwald really doing what it suggests he’s doing?”

“I’ve never heard of him doing something like that...but I don’t think anyone really knows-” He stopped short and Tina finally became aware of a strange ringing sound. She turned around, raising her wand.

“TINA, MO-”

Tina barely registered Theseus’s yell as she was blown back, something smashing off of her head as she stumbled backwards. She was pulled to the right, a form spinning her around as a bright light blinded and a roar deafened her and the world seemed to turn inside out and upside down. Air whooshed out of her lungs as she hit the ground once, twice, before she and her savior slid away from where the explosion had been, heat warming her face and the roar of a fire raged nearby.

Dazed she looked down as Theseus let out a shaky breath, looking up at her with a smile, arms still wrapped around her waist.

“Newt was right, America is vastly more exciting than what is to be believed.” He wheezed with a grin and Tina let out a laugh. The laughter died away as Tina glanced back at Theseus who, she realized slowly, was still holding her.

“Um...Theseus?”

“...Right! Sorry!!” He said hurriedly, moving away and letting her go. She blushed, pushing her hair back and glancing over at the burning building.

That had been close.

“Goldstein!?”

“I’m here.” She called out as other aurors rushed to where they were. “Perfectly fi-” She stood quickly, and suddenly the world seemed to spin. She heard someone yelling as it felt like someone pulled her feet out from under her and darkness wrapped around her and silence became her companion.

She didn’t know how long she was out. Just that she finally awoke groggily, confused as to where she was. But, the smell that surrounded her was comforting, almost familiar and she could feel warmth over her. She opened her eyes and looked up to see smoke clogged sky and glancing down she could see a large coat covering her. The wear and tear was familiar and she finally recognized it was the cologne that she had smelled when Theseus was next to her.

“You’re awake.”

She looked back up to see Percival standing there. Hurriedly, she sat up, instantly regretting it as the world began to spin again. Percival was by her side in an instant, placing a hand on her back, and slowly the world began to right itself again.

“Sir, I-”

“Easy, Goldstein. Theseus said you took quite the hit.”

“It was just the the concussion of the blast, Sir.” She murmured, rubbing her head.

“That doesn’t matter. Take it easy.”

“Yes, Sir.” Tina said, wincing as Percival lifted her face into the light. “What are you doing here?”

“Theseus and the other aurors contacted me. And I don’t think I would have been able to miss the fire by the pier.” He replied, pointing to the fiery debris a few yards away.

“Right...Sir...Whatever was in this warehouse, Grindelwald’s followers didn’t want it found.”

“Clearly. Did you find anything of value about either case in there?”
“The back room that Theseus and I were in originally was Johann’s work area, possibly where the two and Rosie stayed. There was a bassinet and rocking chair.” She clarified at Percival’s incredulous look. “There must have been a ward that had a delayed reaction in there that Johann would disable when entering that we didn’t sense.”

“Anything on the missing children?”

She winced. The letters were still in that room, likely ashes now.

“There were some writings. Unfinished and mostly in German, so I couldn’t understand all of it. But what Theseus and I got was ‘greater good’, ‘children’, and we figured out the word for ‘payment’.”

“Payment?”

“Yes, Sir. But I didn’t really get any of the other words. Regretting not having taken learning German as an extracurricular activity.”

“Not your fault.” Percival muttered, frowning almost uneasily. “It’s still worrying.”

“Yes, Sir.” Tina said. “Sir...do you think...I mean is there a chance that-”

“I don’t know. Possibly...but if that’s the case, why would Grindelwald of all people be buying people, better yet, why would he be buying children?”

“Do you think it’s not him, Sir?” Tina asked and Percival sighed, sounding weary as he looked at the words.

“At this point Goldstein...I don’t know. And I’m beginning to dread finding out.”


Today was not starting out to be a good day, Percival thought to himself as he tried to minimize the limp in his step. If his mood was already dampened with the fire at Pier 13 earlier that week was any hint, the weather had gotten cold and dreary, something that used to be a minor inconvenience to him in the past. Now it was seeming to aim to make him miserable. Both of the ends of his stumps ached something fierce, burning as though the limbs were still there. Despite his efforts that morning, he couldn’t bring himself to put on the prosthetic arm, though the leg he was going to have to deal with. He left earlier than he usually did, Newt still in the process of waking up as he had been leaving.

“Decided to not to wear the prosthetic today?”

Percival glanced over his shoulder and sighed as he spotted a familiar auror hurrying over to him. Theseus offered a grin.

“It’s not a bad thing, mate. Just an observation.”

“How are you so chipper this early?” Percival muttered and Theseus laughed.

“My brother is living with you right now, Percy. You should know by now, that the Scamanders are morning people.”

“Duly noted.”

“So…?” Theseus prompted and Percival sighed.

“The weather is making the phantom pains come back. I can make do with one arm, and I can ignore the pain in my leg.” Percival explained, ignoring Theseus’s frown.

“I see.”

“Don’t make a big deal of it. It’s not the first time I had to do something like this, and it won’t be the last.”

“Morning Sir.”

Both looked back to see Tina walking over, yawning as she clung to a cup of coffee as though it was a lifeline.

“You see, that’s dedication Percy.” Theseus chirped with a grin as Tina blinked sleepily.

“Pardon?” She asked.

“Not a whole lot of aurors here this early.” He replied and Percival noted with amusement that Tina blushed lightly at the praise.

“Oh Theseus, here.” Tina said pulling a small object and then with a flick of her wand, what Percival realized was Theseus’s coat and held it out for the British Auror. “Queenie had it cleaned, so the soot and smoke smell should be gone.”

“I...well…” Theseus muttered, an uncharacteristic flush on his face as he collected the jacket and pulled it on. “Thanks.”

Well this was interesting, Percival mused, casting Theseus a look that the other man glared at. He then looked behind Percival’s shoulder and he watched as Theseus’s expression change.

“...Oh fuck.”

Percival glanced at where Theseus was looking and saw a young, rather attractive woman walking through the main foyer in the early morning.

“What?”

“What the bloody hell is she doing here?”

“Her?” Tina said, peering over Percival’s shoulder.

“Theseus, who is-” Percival barely got the question to form before Theseus walked into the crowd. “Theseus! Wait!”

The British Auror paid them no heed and the woman seemed surprised for a brief moment, before a cool expression washed over her face.

“What the hell are you doing here?”

Percival and Tina looked at Theseus, surprised at the look of pure hatred on the man’s face. The woman that stood in front of them seemed to pay no heed to them.

“I’m allowed to come here on my own free will. Traveling is not just meant for you.” The woman replied coolly, and Theseus’s expression grew darker. “Now, have you forgotten your manners? I don’t think your companions here have the foggiest on who I am.”

“A miracle in itself, you…”

“Refrain from such language, Theseus.” She interrupted before looking at the two and gave a chilling smile, Theseus frowned.

“Allow me to unfortunately introduce Leta Lestrange. And these two are Percival Graves and Tina Godstein.” Theseus muttered and Leta threw him a look.

“Your behavior must mean something...what would it be...ah...right, where is Newt?”

Percival glanced at Theseus, surprised at his friend’s glare.

“Stay away from him, Leta.”

“I had no idea you were still his keeper. He’s 30 now, Theseus. Not a child.”

“That doesn’t matter…” Theseus warned, his gaze steely, and resolute, “Stay. Away. From. Him. You seem to think that being here frees you of any guilt. I can assure you, it does not.”

She stared at him for what seemed like hours, before seeming to relent with a huff.

“I have no desire to interact with Newt, Theseus.”

“I’ll believe that when I see it, Leta.” He muttered. “What are you even doing here?”

“Don’t worry. I won’t be here for but a night.”

“That didn’t answer my question, Leta.” Theseus replied.

“I’m taking a portkey to San Diego, then a ship to Asia. I’m meeting my husband there for a conference.” She said coolly. “Happy now?”

“No. Not until you leave.”

“You always had a way with words.” She muttered, pushing her hair behind her ear. “Now may I go? I’d like to use the restroom.”

Theseus was quiet, before moving to the side and the Leta walked past the trio, Theseus glaring at her back the entire time until she had turned the corner.

“What the hell was that all about?” Percival hissed out.

“Noth-”

“No, not ‘nothing’.” Percival interrupted. “What was that all about?”

“...just keep her away from Newt, alright?” Theseus instructed, instead.

“Theseus, what is going-”

“Auror Scamander!”

The trio turned to see a young woman hurrying over to the trio.

“Minister Fawley is requesting a meeting with you.”

“...Bugger. What could he want?” Theseus muttered, before sighing. “I’ll talk to the two of you later.”

“But-”

“Later.” Theseus muttered, giving a half-hearted wave before the secretary motioned to follow her.

“Do you know anything about her? Leta Lestrange.” Percival asked, turning to look at Tina as Theseus followed the secretary, who shrugged weakly.

“Not a lot. He has a picture frame of her in his shed, but he doesn’t really seem...happy to talk or even think about her. Queenie said she was a taker.”

“A taker?”

“In a relationship, I mean.” Tina explained quickly. “I don’t know. Newt got really defensive when Queenie looked into his mind about her.”

Percival was quiet, stewing over the information.

“But...seeing how Theseus reacted...I wonder what she did.” Tina added, biting her lower lip as she watched him.

“I do too.” He finally admitted after a long silence, before clearing his throat. “Have you heard from him?”

“Newt? Not this morning. But I don’t know if Queenie had any plans scheduled for the day with him. She’s trying to be more children friendly to keep an eye on the two kids.”

“If you see him, keep an eye on him.”

“...Yes Sir?” Tina asked, cocking her head to the side, analyzing him. Ignoring this he continued to walk to his office, the ache in his arm seeming to be nothing in comparison to the ache suddenly growing in his chest.

He didn’t know how many hours passed before he had gone to get another cup of coffee and on his way back slowed when he spotted a familiar magizoologist wandering down the hall towards the Security Department.

“Newt?”

“Hello!”

“What are you doing here?”

“Oh, Queenie wanted to show Credence and Rosie off to her work colleagues for a few minutes and made me go up here to give Tina her lunch. She forgot it this morning.” Newt remarked, lifting up a paper bag. “Is that a common thing among aurors?” He asked and Percival snorted about to respond.

“Well, do my eyes deceive me? Newt Scamander, is that really you?” A voice called out. It looked like Theseus was right, Percival thought dryly as he turned to see Leta Lestrange walking down the corridor. “How many years has
it been, hm?”

Percival glanced over at Newt and blinked in surprise at how rigid the magizoologist had become as Leta came over. She had the same coy smile she had given to them earlier on her face, but now it seemed like a predator had found its prey.

“Five years? Ten?” She mused, cupping his cheek and he inhaled sharply. Newt’s expression had become blank, eyes focusing on a completely different area of the hall, trying desperately to not look at Leta. Noticing that the man was now shivering, Percival had enough.

“Ms. Lestrange, unless you have something to relay for the Security Department, I’m going to have to ask you to head back to the main foyer.” Percival interrupted, pushing in front of Newt and separating the two. Leta’s eyes narrowed, almost curiously.

“Did Theseus put you up to this? He’s a rather insufferable man.”

“No, he didn’t. Now, I’ve been polite to you. Don’t push your luck.”

She stared at him with dark eyes that bored into his, challenging him for dominance. Soon after though, and likely because he placed a hand on his wand, she looked away, and gave Newt that chilling smile.

“We’ll see each other again sometime, Newt.”

The magizoologist was strangely quiet as Leta turned and strode back to the main foyer. Percival glanced back as Newt finally shifted, scratching at the back of his neck.

“What was that?”

“It...Nothing. Everything is fine.”

“Mercy Lewis, you sound so much like your brother.” Percival muttered. “That was not nothing, Newt.” Percival said, looking at the taller man who made it a point to not look at him. “Given your reaction, I can see why Theseus snapped at her like that.”

“Theseus is overprotective.”

“Yes, but he’s never full out threatened anyone, a civilian might I add, and actually be serious about it. And clearly she upset you as well.” Percival countered. Newt was quiet. “So who is this Leta Lestrange?”

“...she and I were friends in Hogwarts.” Newt smiled ruefully as he explained. “Neither of us really...fit in at school, so we were close. She didn’t really believe in the whole ‘pureblood’ notion, while I...well...I wasn’t like Theseus. Anyway…” He continued the story hurriedly. “There was an accident near the end of our 6th year...she endangered the life of another student, and she claimed she was deathly afraid of her family’s ire, so, I said it was my fault. She didn’t even come to my defense, instead choosing to embellish the lie and wholeheartedly believing it. Even when we were alone. I was expelled, the expulsion was not enforced completely, due to the influence of one of my professors...I’m not sure how he did it or why. Regardless of how he managed it, my wand wasn’t broken, so I suppose that doesn’t really matter.”

“Doesn’t matter? Newt, that woman could have very well ended your career as a magizoologist before it even started. And she didn’t seem to have any problem with making you uncomfortable for more than what happened at school.” Percival snapped, Newt was quiet, looking away. “What else did she do to you?”

‘It doesn’t matter.”

“Newt-”

“People change. I’ve grown used to that.”

“Newt…” Percival blew his breath out slowly to calm himself. “You know that’s not healthy, right?” He finally said and he felt Newt’s gaze finally land on him. “You shouldn’t be scarred by what someone does and just accept that that’s the way life is. No one deserves that, especially not you.”

“I’m just me.” Newt muttered with a shrug.

“Yes, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I prefer that you’re yourself actually. Like that you better.”

Newt’s gaze snapped back and looked at Percival. For a few long moments, he stared at Percival, almost incredulous, before his cheeks began to color and Percival felt his face seeming to burn. He stared at the magizoologist’s lips that were right there, and he swallowed as Percival swallowed. His face was probably on fire now, and they were so close he could almost feel-

“Sir!”

The pair practically jumped apart as Tina’s footsteps echoed down the hall, and Percival withheld the curses that he yearned to release.

“What is it, Goldstein?” Percival forced out, rubbing the bridge of his nose, trying to keep his temper in check as the female auror slid to a stop, glancing at the pair. Whether or not she noticed she had interrupted something, she didn’t say, before clearing her throat and gestured to the office.

“...Director Beltz from Germany is at the floo network. Said he may have found some information on Johann and Monika.”

“Fine.” Percival muttered, chancing a glance at Newt, whose face was still red, and he was looking at his feet.

“Newt, what are you-”

“You...you forgot your lunch.” Newt managed, holding out the bag, his cheeks flushing brightly.

“Oh thanks.”

There was an awkward silence and Tina cleared her throat.

“Sir-”

“I’ll see you both later.” Newt said hurriedly, and the two aurors watched as he hurriedly left. Tina chanced a glance at her boss.

“Sir?”

“Not a word, Goldstein.”

“Yes Sir. Not a word.” Tina said and hurried after Percival as the two walked to his office.

Chapter Text

“You’ll have to forgive the Auror Department here, Scamander. We’ve been flooded with cases and requests, so it got lost in some poor fool’s pile.”

“Understandable Beltz.” Theseus remarked.

“Though this doesn’t look like the British Auror Department.”

“It’s not. American.”

“Quite a long way from the UK, Boy.”

“Sorry ‘bout that. I’ll keep it brief. You’ve received the correct pictures right? Recognize the chaps on the pictures?”

“Let’s see…” Beltz began and after a moment sighed. “Yes I recognize them. Not surprising you didn’t find them right off the bat. They have another dozen names here alone. No telling how many they have worldwide.”

“But you’ve heard of them?”

“Heard? I’ve dealt with them personally. Though Johann and Monika are aliases that are popular with the pair, they were originally born as Dorin Borodin and Catin Petran.”

“Well at least you were right in that sense, Theseus.” Percival muttered glancing at his old friend as Beltz’s face in the fire was obscured for a moment by a fiery hand rubbing the bridge of his nose, almost in annoyance.

“So what have the two morons gotten themselves into now?”

“They’re...ah...they’re dead sir.”

“Dead?”

“Yes. The coroner believes that it was a variety of spells.”

“...I wish I could say I was surprised.”

“What do you mean?”

“Dorin and Catin were regarded as a skilled witch and wizard in Durmstrang, probably would have done great things if they hadn’t gotten involved in the wrong crowds. Catin was kicked out for uses in the Dark Arts and Dorin barely managed to finish. Then they were in and out of our department, the number growing after they mingled with Grindelwald’s friends. Still, even after joining Grindelwald, on a scale of how dangerous the two were, they were relatively harmless.”

“Yeah, tell that to Egypt…” Theseus muttered under his breath.

“From what I remember, they were last seen going to America with another couple about a year ago. But that was from French West Africa.”

“Their wands weren’t registered here though.” Tina replied automatically.

“Not surprised. The Wand Registry’s pretty annoying about making sure the owner is who they say to be. Last year I got about a dozen requests in the same month. If they knew that, they probably avoided the department like hell.”

Tina seemed to flush at that, clearing her throat and making a pointed glare at O’Reilly’s horribly disguised laughter.

“So this second couple...” Percival offered.

“Wouldn’t know. They weren’t in our country when Dorin and Catin were last spotted, so finding their names on any registry would be difficult. And that’s not even saying if they used their actual name or had fake credentials. Hard to tell if they were people they met somewhere else or if those people returned. I’ll keep a watch though for any strange people.”

“One last question.” Percival added and Theseus looked at him in confusion. “Does Dorin and Catin have any living family?”

“To collect their bodies?”

“Partially. When Catin was discovered, we found an infant with her. We believe that while she was here she had a child, and wanted to inform the family.” Percival explained. Beltz was quiet for a moment, blinking several times, before collecting himself.

“No. Both were only children and Dorin’s parents died a few years back. Catin’s parents were never really in her life, and I doubt they’d want a reminder of their failure.”

Percival was quiet before nodding his acknowledgement.

“If there’s anything you find out.”

“You’ll be the first to know.” Beltz replied tersely and like that the face of the German Director vanished. Theseus glanced at Percival.

“Trying to pawn Rosie off on someone else?”

“It’s good manners. Despite not being law abiding citizens, they could have still had family.” Percival replied pulling on his jacket “Or family that cared for them and deserved to know about Rosie.”

“Beltz was pretty strange about it though.” Theseus remarked off-handedly, following Percival down the hall.

“What do you mean?”

“I mean did you see his expression when you said there was a child involved. He looked like he had swallowed a lemon wedge.”

Percival was silent, frowning in agreement as he thought about it.

“Maybe he knew the family… he certainly seemed familiar with their background.” Theseus remarked. “But I guess it doesn’t matter. Newt’s stuck with the kid for awhile longer.”

“I doubt Newt sees it like that.” Percival remarked dryly, walking and Theseus chuckled.

“Probably not.”

There was a silence for a moment.

“...he’s probably thinking about adopting her completely.” Theseus said. “Both of them. He hasn’t said anything, but he’s always...well he’s himself. And he would never want to give either of the kids to a family he didn’t know because he would worry about how they were raising them.”

“Because of his school years?”

Theseus paused, looking at Percival, eyes narrowing protectively.

“Look, that’s Newt story. Not mine.”

“He told me about his near expulsion.”

“What he gave you was likely the watered down version.” Theseus replied coldly.

“Then un-water it for me.”

“...Leta Lestrange connected to Newt because of their likes of magical creatures and their similar personalities. But that’s basically where the similarities end. Newt was and is interested in the rehabilitation, conservation, and release of creatures. Leta...Leta was more interested in experimentation on the magical creatures, seeing how far they would go, on what happened to a creature who was magically manipulated. She was...humane...I suppose. Newt never gave an inclination that she was cruel towards them...usually.” Theseus remarked, frowning. “But one day she went too far and her experiment went wrong and pissed off the jarvey she was handling. It went mad...attacked a student that was walking nearby and nearly ripped his arm off. Newt probably told you he took the blame for it. Well her older brothers, both in the 7th year, decided that it’d be best he didn’t change his mind, and proceeded to beat him up pretty badly to keep his mouth shut. Leta didn’t scold them when she found out...pretty much ignored it. The other professors ignored it too, except for Professor Dumbledore who didn’t believe anyone could be clumsy enough to get two black eyes.” Theseus remarked, working on his cufflinks. He paused for a moment and Percival frowned at the British Auror expression darkening.

“But that wasn’t enough, was it?”

“For them? No. No it wasn’t. Not for that family. What the Lestrange family is known for here isn’t far off from the truth. They’re twisted and have no problems having their fun with another person for their own benefit, ignoring the pain of the victim. He returned to Hogwarts, and was practically ostracized from the rest of the schoolmates because of the rumors the Lestrange’s had spread. Any social event with the Lestranges there was awkward at best, harassment at worst. If he had any friends before the accident, most wanted nothing to do with him and he was bullied horribly because of that.”

“Why would they-”

“Take her word over his?” Theseus finished and snorted. “Things are different in the UK. The Scamanders aren’t one of the sacred Twenty-Eight, The Lestranges are. My father is a muggleborn wizard, and my mother is half-blood. Leta and her family are purebloods and in the ministry’s eyes that gives you an out most do not get. And Leta would never completely involve herself in the rumors, but she kept up to date, almost like dangling food over a starved animal. It was another experiment for her, I suppose. Some big game, and Newt was the object to play with. By the time their attention was diverted to something different, Newt found creatures to be better company than people. Safer. And I can’t blame him.”

“I’m sorry.”

“It’s not your fault.” Theseus muttered.

“It’s not, but your family shouldn’t have had to suffer through that. Newt especially.”

Theseus threw Percival a strange expression, almost analyzing him, eyes narrowed, head cocked to the side.

“...I’m curious actually. What’s your interest in my brother all of a sudden?”

Shit.

“I...just want to know why he never seems to think of Hogwarts fondly. I mean it’s school, there will always be bad memories, but he never talks about it other than Dumbledore, and even that’s like pulling teeth.” Percival managed. Theseus narrowed his eyes, clearly analyzing something that Percival was now trying to desperately hide.

“It wasn’t easy for him.” Theseus finally said after a long moment. “But he’s a Scamander. And he’s strong because of it. Besides, if any idiot tries to mess with him, he’ll have to go through me.”

Percival was silent for a moment, seeming to take the words to heart, and Theseus looked at him, blinking several times as he seemed to spot something that he hadn’t quite ever seen before.

How curious.

How very curious.


“I’m just saying, jell-o molds with fruit in them is just nasty.” Tristan remarked as he followed Elaine up the steps.

“Why not? I think they’re rather tasty.”

“Yeah, but you’re weird. The Graves family member who likes jell-o in general is strange.”

“Percival likes them. Hence a cup is in his lunch.”

“He’s just as weird as you baby sister. Another thing to-”

“Ah, so I wasn’t imagining the similarities with that man.”

The two paused, glancing to their left and spotting a young woman staring at them.

“I’m sorry, have we met before?”

“Forgive my manners, Leta Lestrange. I just met your brother, I believe. Average sized man missing an arm?”

“...what of it?”

“I was just curious of his relationship with Newt Scamander, as we were friends in school and it doesn’t seem all that fair to him if he is courting Newt.”

“...If our brother does have an interest for Scamander, it is not our business to know. Now if you’ll excuse us…” Elaine said, going around and dragging Tristan behind her.

“Tell your brother he’s wasting his time.”

Tristan stopped as Elaine froze mid-step, the older of the two siblings glaring at the woman, who brushed her hair back, so sure of herself.

“Newt is not one to be aware of or even good with relationships, unfortunately. He latches onto them, clinging to them like a leech, sucking them dry.”

“Ma’am, you’re being rather rude to a man you haven’t seen since you were in school.”

“We’ve met since then as, unlike you Americans, us British wizards keep close ties to one another.”

“I sincerely doubt he would want to keep ties to someone who refers him as a leech.” Tristan remarked coolly, as Elaine slowly turned around. Something in her expression made Tristan pause, looking at her curiously. He had only seen that expression once or twice...so something was going on with her.

“Shows what you know. It doesn’t matter how grand your brother thinks he is, Newt will eventually just come crawling back-”

SMACK!

Tristan gaped as Elaine stormed over and swung her hand up, smacking Leta across the face. The British woman stumbled backwards, clutching her cheek, stunned, as passersby paused, staring at the two women in surprise.

“Don’t. You. EVER. Say. That. About. Either. Of. Them!!” She snapped, poking the other woman repeatedly in the chest and pushing the other woman back with each poke.

“You hit-”

“You’ve more than earned it! You are NOT Newt’s keeper, you are NOT all knowing, you don’t know a THING about my brother or his personality, and considering what Newt did for YOU at Hogwarts, the fact you have the gall to call him a leech is disgusting!”

“H-How do you-”

“Oh I can see everything about you, you conniving, evil-”

“Elaine!!” Tristan exclaimed, hurrying over and pulling his sister back before she pulled out her wand. “Uh...nice meeting you and welcome to the States. Enjoy the stay! Bye!” With that Tristan pulled Elaine away, the youngest Graves glaring back to the stunned British witch. When she finally vanished, she sighed in exasperation.

“...I lost my temper a bit.”

“I’ll say.”

“I know, I know. That was rude of me, and I shouldn’t have-”

“Are you kidding me, Elaine!! That was AWESOME!” Tristan exclaimed as Elaine looked at him in surprise. “I would have done something if it wouldn’t have looked like a punch on my end. But you should have seen her expression from my end. Absolutely fantastic!!”

“I don’t really think it was that-”

“Tristan, what are you yelling about?”

The trio looked up to see Percival and Theseus walking down the steps. Elaine felt dread building as she glanced at Tristan as his eyes glinted with a look she had always remembered to when he would try to screw with Percival.

“Our baby sister finally became a woman, Percy!!”

And even Elaine couldn’t stop the the snort as Percival’s face turned almost ashen. But as their brother began to look about an inch away from a stroke, mercifully, she nudged Tristan away.

“I slapped someone. That’s it. No becoming a woman the way you’re thinking.”

“You’re no fun.” Tristan pouted. “But yes she did, and it was an epic slap. One that would make Seb and Mama weep tears of pride.”

“...You slapped someone?”

“Oh she more than deserved it. I don’t put my walls down for everybody, but Mercy Lewis, I push it a fraction down to get an understanding of her and that Leta Lestrange just made me so angry with all those energies coming from her. But admittedly, it wasn’t the smartest things I could have done.”

“...huh?”

The two younger Graves looked at Theseus and Percival, both who looked stunned.

“She must have met you a little bit earlier and we were talking about you liking jell-o fruit cups and she overheard us.” Tristan explained with a snort. “Tried to read us the riot act about how she was better than us, made some comments about Newt, and little Elaine here gave Ms. Lestrange a lovely memento to remember the Graves family by. Absolutely beautiful.”

“...can the Scamander’s adopt your sister?” Theseus asked with a grin and Elaine blushed. Percival sighed, giving his sister a glare, that strangely didn’t seem to have any anger behind it. She cocked her head to the side.

“I guess she made a bad impression on you too?”

“Excellent deduction.” Percival muttered, pointedly looking away from Theseus who looked at his friend.

“I repeat mate...what is with your interest in my brother?” Theseus asked. Percival didn’t look at him and the younger Graves siblings looked at their older brother.

“Mister Graves!!”

Credence rushed to the auror, grinning brightly. Newt was walking down Rosie snug in Newt’s arms, snoozing. Elaine, Theseus, and Tristan watched as rather besotted look pass Percival’s face before it was quickly hidden away. Elaine held back the soft laughter as Theseus’s eyes narrowed. Percival Graves could hide his emotions from many people, but not everyone.

And clearly not from Theseus Achilles Felis Scamander.

“Alright mate. Let’s go.”

“Theseus?” Newt called out as Theseus dragged Percival away. His older brother ignored him.

“Later, Newt!!”

“...I better go with them.” Tristan said. “Make sure I don’t become the oldest son in our household.”

Elaine chuckled softly, waving him away.

“Ms. Graves, want to get lunch with us?” Credence chirped as the other group vanished in the exiting crowd and Elaine blinked, then smiled, looking up to stare at Newt.

“I’d be delighted to.”


Percival wondered if this was revenge for a past mission or punishment for the whole Grindelwald debacle . It had to be, because he couldn’t be getting the shovel talk by Theseus about courting or even dating his brother, while his own younger brother looked on while they waited for lunch.

“Were you going to tell me that you fancy my brother, or were you going to try and hide it.”

“I’m not hiding anything.” Percival muttered.

“Uh huh, right and I’ve decided to take up dance.” Theseus snapped.

“Look even if it was true, can we not discuss it around the no-maj’s! It’s…”

“Not well liked in their society, Mr. Scamander.” Tristan muttered under his breath. Theseus was quiet. “And you know that.”

“My point is…” Theseus muttered, “you should have told me!”

“I’m not discussing this with you.”

“Tough shit. Because you are now.”

“What I do is not really any of your business.”

“If it involves my brother, it does.”

Tristan inwardly groaned as Percival turned to glare at Theseus.

“Do you...or do you not fancy my brother?” Theseus hissed under his breath.

“And if I do? What are you going to do about it?” Percival asked, jutting his jaw out in defiance, his hand going to his side pocket where his wand was. He may only have an arm, but clearly he wasn’t afraid to defend himself.

Theseus was quiet, staring at his friend for a long moment.

“If you hurt my brother, Graves, you will never be seen again.” Theseus remarked coolly, and Percival swallowed, watching as the British auror left the sandwich store without food.

“...well let it be known that the Scamander family have a...way with words on certain things.” Tristan remarked as he took a sip of his coffee, earning a glare from his older brother. “But do you? I mean want to start something with Newt?”

“...I don’t know.” Percival finally responded. Tristan was quiet.

“If you are...you’re going to have to make the first move. If Leta Lestrange was any indication, he’s been pretty closed off by the British society for awhile. She was right on one thing. Their society is very different than ours, and Newt is a broken result of that.” Tristan remarked. Percival was quiet, staring in front of him. Tristan sighed.

“I know you have to play the stoic big brother, but you don’t have to be so self-sacrificing for the family name.”

“I’m not.”

“Sure you aren’t.”

“Tristan, I doubt he’s all that interested in an auror.”

Tristan sighed.

“And you would know this because…?”

“Drop it, Tristan.”

“Fine. I’m just saying Percival, you sacrifice enough as is. Don’t sacrifice your happiness because of a what if that you don’t even know the answer to.” Tristan replied, paying for his lunch and snatching the sandwich, leaving his brother there in the silence, running a hand over his jaw.


Elaine smiled gently as the small group settled in a diner, Credence practically sitting on her lap as he showed off his drawings of what she could only assume was Newt’s creatures.

“And this is Matilda!! She’s so sweet!!”

“I can see that. A nundu, right?”

“Mhm. I can’t be around her a lot, but she’s pretty nice.”

“Uh...Credence, maybe that isn’t…”

“My brother already knows, and if he hasn’t arrested you for a nundu, I doubt one more person knowing is that bad, Newt.” Elaine interrupted and Newt blinked in surprise. She smirked. “I’m an empath.” Elaine explained with a chuckle. “A branch off of a legimens is the best way of describing it.”

“I’ve heard of that.” Newt replied quickly. “Each Empath is different from the other.”

“Correct.” Elaine replied with a chuckle, taking a sip of her coffee. “Some empath’s can read the energies of objects, fauna, flora, the energies of the earth. Other’s can see events yet to happen; divination if one is to believe in that, other people’s thoughts, things of that nature.”

“And you?”

“I’m a mix of a claircognizant, physically and emotionally sensitive, and a medium, though the last the emotions have to be very strong. Tristan describes it as being a human pensieve.”

“Impressive.”

“For a person outside looking in.” She replied with a chuckle. “Most empaths with that amount of differential in sensitivities usually go mad before they reach adulthood. I, for one, could barely stand being in the same room with a dozen people when I was younger.”

“...so what saved you?”

“Benefit of my siblings being so much older than me, two of them were in the workforce before I was even five. That didn’t stop us from thinking I was just really shy as a kid at first. I clung to my mother or to any family member when I was younger, trying to focus on them rather than those around me, because it hurt and disoriented me. Percival began to suspect there was something else going on when we went to visit him at work, and I puked from being surrounded by not only people but by energies of victims. Sebille looked up our family tree and found that Gondulphus Graves’s youngest daughter was probably an exceptionally strong empath who didn’t live past the age of 25 before she went crazy and killed herself.”

Newt frowned as Elaine shrugged.

“It skipped here and there down the line of the Graves, usually not as bad, but normally they were considered the crazy of the family.”

“You seem rather mild-mannered if you don’t mind me saying.”

“I don’t mind.” She replied with a chuckle. “Percival began to train me with Occlumency and other tactics of closing my mind to unwanted breaches against it. Probably against the rules somewhere of teaching someone so young those abilities, but he was very determined to make sure I didn’t lose my marbles.”

“And it worked, I gather.”

“Mhm. I can still feel those energies around me, but it’s like being in a room with a drizzle outside. I can hear it, but it’s not as intrusive as it once was. As I’ve grown up I’ve learned to develop my own methods to work, and I’ve managed to learn how to focus on a particular person.” Her gaze flicked back to him, eyes resolute and he gulped. “So much in fact, I can practically taste that you’re pining for my older brother.”

Newt’s expression turned aghast and he looked away, his face a brilliant red. She looked at him coyly.

“Your energy is energetic at least, nervous at most, flitting from here to there, but when Percy enters, your worries seem to take a backseat and you focus entirely on him. It’s not uncommon, as people tend to do that, but most do that to a majority of people. You only focus on him completely. You don’t even give Madame President that type of focus.”

“I...ah...you see…”

“What I’m curious about is why you’re so hesitant to involve yourself further with him.” She asked pleasantly. Newt looked down at his tea. Queenie’s eyes widened.

“You really think she LOVED you?!”

“Don’t make me laugh! She pitied you at most as the years continued! She never loved you.”

“She would never love someone as weak and annoying as you!”

“You’re a nuisance!”

“Why can’t you be like your brother?”

“Oh...Oh Newt-”

“Queenie. Don’t.” Newt interrupted. “Elaine, people find me a bother. I’m sure...given time, your brother will feel the same way.” Newt muttered, taking a sip of tea, refusing to look at Elaine in the eye. Elaine glanced at Queenie whose eyes were glistening for some unspoken reason as she took a sip of her own drink, apparently determined to not say a word.

“My brother is a lot of things, Newt.” Elaine finally said, setting her cup of coffee down. “A warrior, seen probably as aloof to many, but actually is kind to those who know him. But he is very, very stubborn. Trust me on this, if and possibly when my brother chooses someone who would actually pry into that tough shell he developed, he would never view that person as a bother. He’s loyal and cares deeply for those who make it through to the actual Percival. He wouldn’t find you a bother, Newt. And you’ll never know if you don’t ask.”

Newt looked away, a petulant expression on his face.

“Not everyone is like Leta Lestrange, Newt.”

His gaze snapped back to hers, eyes wide and Rosie made a fussing sound, likely sensing the shift in mood of the booth.

“...please don’t mention her. Alright?”

Elaine was quiet, watching him as he tried to shush Rosie.

“Do you fancy him, though?” Elaine asked and Newt flushed.

“He doesn’t feel the same way.”

“That wasn’t what I asked.” Elaine replied softly and he flushed, looking away.

“Even if I do fancy him...it wouldn’t matter, Elaine.” He finally said under his breath and Rosie began to fuss again. “Being alone...suits me.”

And Rosie let out a loud wail and began to struggle in his arms.

“Seems like Rosie disagrees.”

“She’s just fussy because of the rain.” Newt muttered, standing up, “And it’s probably time for her nap. I probably should go, get her settled and all.”

“Newt…”

“I’ll see you later, Queenie.” Newt said, his face a bright red, setting some money down on the table for his food, all while looking away from the two women as he picked up Rosie and Credence followed, munching on a piece of his sandwich. The two women watched the trio leave and then sighed.

“They’re so obvious that they like each other more than just colleagues or friends. The only one’s who haven’t noticed their respective feelings to each other is them.”

“I know. They deserve at least to talk to each other about it.” Elaine agreed.

“I just...I don’t know how to help them. I don’t want to push them.”

“Perhaps they just need a little nudge.” Elaine muttered to herself and Queenie looked at her.

“If...don’t do anything that could hurt them to try and get them to talk to one another.”

“I have no intention of hurting them, Ms. Goldstein,” Elaine said softly, “and I won’t. But something needs to give. Those two have walls built around their hearts for different reasons. If no one helps, then those walls will stay.” Elaine said and Queenie sighed in agreement.

“And I think that will wind up hurting them even more.”

“Yeah.”

Elaine was quiet as she took a sip of her soup. Yes something would have to give.

She just didn’t know what.


Newt sat in his office, listening to the distant roars and chatter of his creatures beyond the door, mingling with the soft lullaby music from the hole above and if he looked up towards it, could see the soft glow of the orb used as a nightlight for Credence. His writings sat in front of him, a quill in his hand as he stared blankly at the page.

“ I can practically taste that you’re pining for my older brother.”

His eyes blurred as he rapidly pushed back the burning in his eyes. Merlin, was he that noticeable? And if that was the case, did Percival know as well?

He certainly hadn’t meant to be so transparent.

Of course, it hadn’t occurred to him that he fancied Percival Graves at first. Why would it have been? Percival Graves was the Director of Magical Security, an auror. Apparently from what his brother said, was a stickler for the rules. As a magizoologist who had a case of several highly illegal animals, that wasn’t something that would have occurred to his mind. But being forced to live in the same house, forced to be in the same vicinity for long periods of time, it changed. His image of Percival Graves changed.

Now the Percival Graves he saw was a man that cared for his country and the safety of both muggle and wizarding folk. That he was scarred in more ways than one by Grindelwald, so much that if it had been him in his shoes, Newt wasn’t sure he’d still be alive or willing to keep waking up.

But Percival Graves did. Every day.

He didn’t shy away from being around children, wasn’t completely appalled by his creatures, and was actually rather intrigued by them.

And slowly, he found that he looked forward to seeing Percival Graves smile, being able to make him smile. Laugh.

But.

“No one is going to love you Newt. You’re a freak of nature.”

His eyes blurred further as the taunts of his school mates echoed in his head and rubbed at them, trying to stop the tears from falling.

Whatever Percival Graves was to him...he couldn’t reach that. He knew that.

Percival would be better finding someone else.

And he…

He was better off alone.

Chapter Text

Queenie hummed lightly as she spun around in the apartment above the bakery. Jacob watched her from the door jam, glancing at the old radio that was playing a tune. She spun again and paused as she spotted him and then smiled.

“Spying are we, Mr. Kowalski?” She teased and Jacob chuckled, walking up to her, earning a squeal as he pulled her lightly to him. She wrapped her arms around his neck, smiling brightly at him, nuzzling his shoulder lightly.

“Don’t know why you chose me...so many men better looking than me…”

“I chose you because the first thing you thought was that I was an angel.” Queenie said with a chuckle, kissing him lightly. “And not how to get into my skirt.”

“I thought…when we first met you said that I thought the same thing other guys thought when they met you.”

“I was just teasing you when we first met, hon.” She said with a giggle and his brow rose and he grinned. He spun her lightly, earning a pleased laugh from Queenie as they began to dance slowly to the beat, smiling and laughing with each spin. Finally they fell backwards onto the sofa, laughing breathlessly. Queenie slowly slid into his lap, curling up to him. She smiled as his hand slid onto her back, rubbing it in a soothing manner.

“Have you heard from Newt lately? He hasn’t visited in a little while.”

Queenie chuckled.

“He’s busy being Mommy to Credence and Rosie, and I think he has a crush. He’ll deny it to the end of time though.”

“A crush?”

“Mhm. On Percival Graves.”

“...you mean that guy that that Grindelwald impersonated last year?”

“Mhm.”

“...well that’s strange. Happy for him, still going to take some getting used to...” Jacob admitted with a shrug, “but as long as he’s happy that’s all that matters.”

Queenie smiled slightly, nodding in agreement. She sighed as he rubbed the back of her neck and she seemed to melt in his touch.

“How’s work?”

“Boring...but it’s work.” She hummed lightly.

“Is that Bruno guy still giving you trouble?”

“It’s nothing I can’t handle, Sweetie. I’m used to it.” She hummed, trying to be soothing. He didn’t answer. They were silent for a moment, Queenie curling into his warmth, eyes gliding closed as she relaxed, listening to his heartbeat.

“...Marry me.”

Her eyes snapped open, her hand pressed to his chest, listening to his stuttering heartbeat. She then slowly looked up at him. His face was red, and he was giving a shy smile.

“I love ya, doll. I know you’re not allowed to, but even if we can’t show it, I want to marry you. That way, at work you know that even if those creeps think bad things, I’m home for you and I’m yours, completely, and-” She leapt forward, kissing him. He inhaled sharply in surprise, before pressing his hands to her waist, holding her to him. She moved away after a few moments, looking at him straight in the eyes, eyes glittering and her face broke into a smile.

“Yes.” She finally managed, her voice cracking.

“...yes?” He repeated, his voice cracking as well as he began to smile. She nodded, sniffling heavily.

“Yes. Yes. I’ll marry you.”

He cupped her face lightly, kissing her again and again.

This wasn’t going to be easy. They knew that. There were going to be trials that they would have to face, decisions they would have to make. They knew that....but now...

“I love you.” She sniffled heavily and he pulled her close.

“I love you too.”

Now they were happy in each other’s arms, and that was enough.


Percival glanced up at the mirror, staring at the reflection facing him. He grimaced at the beard, running a hand over it, self-consciously. For a year, he used it as a way to avoid looking at the face that had endangered his country, guilt too extreme.

But now…

Now…

You’re mine, Percival.

He shook his head several times, ridding himself of Grindelwald’s voice. He stared at the expression, before grabbing his wand.

It was time to get it over with.

A little while later, Percival could hear the door chiming, and the wards buzzing around his house.

“Percival! If your wards are alerting you of someone entering, it’s just me!” Elaine’s voice echoed and he chuckled under his breath.

“Missus Elaine!!” Credence’s voice echoed and there was laughter. He exited the bedroom and made his way to where he could hear voices. As he turned the corner, Elaine looked up and blinked, before smiling.

“You shaved.”

Percival glanced at her, eyebrow raised.

“Is that a bad thing?”

“No, not at all...with the beard you always looked like those homeless men in Central Park. A nicely dressed homeless man, but still…it’s a nice improvement.”

“...smartass.”

She stuck her tongue out in defiance, before humming lightly, glancing up and looking over his shoulder. He blinked as she smirked and he turned.

Newt stared at him, blinking several times as he stared at Percival.

“Newt, don’t you think Percival looks better without the beard?” Elaine asked cheekily and Newt’s face blossomed into a rather intriguing red color.

“I...uh...well…yes, it's rather fetching...but I...” Newt stammered, his face becoming redder and redder.

Mercifully, there was knocking on the door and Percival turned to go to it. He barely managed to open the door.

“Uncle Percy!!!” Several cries sounded and Percival barely managed to recognize the quintet of children, before he was on the ground, the ton of children and the tangle of limbs covering him.

“Frederick and Cora Fontaine! What have I told you about jumping on your Uncle?!”

“But Ansel and Elliot and Blanche are allowed too!!”

“Yes, but Tristan is an idiot.”

“Hey!”

Percival lightly snorted, sitting up with ease as his nieces and nephew’s tumbled off of him all giggling.

“Yer smooth, Uncle Percy!” Blanche exclaimed, sitting up and clasping Percival’s cheeks with her tiny hands, gaping at him. He chuckled.

“Yes it would appear so.”

“Aw, I liked it scraggly…” Ansel muttered, earning a long-suffering sigh from Tristan as Sebille coughed about his parenting skills.

Percival ignored the looks and quiet comments, glancing back at Newt who was staring at the family...or if he was mistaken, perhaps just him.

He didn’t want to think of the reason as to what that actually meant.


Percival changed when he was around children, Newt mused watching as the the Director’s nieces and nephews all crowded around him, several conversations going on at once, keeping up with all of them at once rather well. He seemed to calm around children, especially his nieces and nephews, having no problem treating them like capable adults, something they clearly enjoyed. It was strange. About a month ago, he wouldn’t have considered Percival Graves to being someone who was a softie around kids, but now...

“Look Uncle Percy, I’m an erumpent!!” Frederick called out, making a trumpeting sound. Newt couldn’t help but snort.

“Eleanor doesn’t sound like that.”

And everyone turned to look at him.

“Pardon?”

“Eleanor. They have a more nasally sounding trumpeting sound.”

“They?”

“Erumpents. Eleanor’s my erumpent...a lot of my information in my book on the female erumpent species were based on her. Technically speaking, she isn't my erumpent, as the sanctuary that I’m hoping to release her to will likely have an opening in a little bit in 1928, so she’ll be very happy about that...”

“...you have an erumpent?”

“Oh boy…” Tristan said with a smirk but Percival seemed amused, realizing where this was going.

“Well, would like to see her?”

“What?” was the collective response from the kids, before they looked back to their parents.

“Hm...oh yes better ask your parents first."

Newt looked up at the adults and then smiled. “Sorry to be a bother, but I’d like for them to see an erumpent. Is that alright? She was in heat last month so she’s not anymore and perfectly safe unless provoked, so everything will be fine.” Newt asked. Percival watched in amusement as Tristan, Sebille, Calvin, and Livia looked at one another.

“Well sure, but how-”

“Brilliant, I’ll be right back.”

“...okay, how does he have an erumpent in your house, Percy. It’s big, but not that big.” Tristan said and Percival raised his hands, remaining silent. “Oh you s-”

“Newt, my brother and sisters have no idea what you’re talking about with seeing Eleanor.” Percival interrupted as the magizoologist walked back him and watched as his expression brightened.

“Oh, my apologies! Did you want to come too?”

“Come, wait…” Sebille said as Newt set down his suitcase, and opened it. “What are you-!”

Newt didn’t answer, instead climbing into the case. Percival couldn’t help but laugh at the expressions on his family’s face and they looked at Percival.

“After you.” Was all he said as he picked up Rosie, who stared up at him, gnawing on her fist innocently.

After a bit of hesitation, the Graves family made their way down the ladder. And Percival wished he had some way to photograph his siblings, their spouses, and the children’s faces when they finally reached the shack and then exited into the enclosures.

“Holy…” Tristan wheezed out, spinning around as he tried to latch onto every single creature that he could spot in the case.

“How...how in the world did he manage this?” Sebille asked, spinning to look at Percival, who shrugged.

“He says just a simple mixture of extension and exapansion charms. He’s probably have so many different spells and wards, even he can’t remember all of them.”

“Mercy Lewis, this is absolutely beautiful. Genius, I have to say.” Elaine said as the kids all clung to their mother’s wide eyed and excited, but seeming to realize that wandering away right then was not the brightest of ideas.

“Come on!” Credence chirped happily, pulling on Frederick’s hand. “Eleanor’s enclosure is this way!! It’s near the mooncalves, but I’ll show you them later!”

“How many creatures does he have here?” Sebille asked as they followed Credence who beamed.

“Oh Mister Scamander has ton of creatures! He helps them and rehab...reheb…”

“Rehabilitates?” Percival suggested and smirked as Credence nodded proudly.

“Rehabilitates them! Then he releases the ones he can.” He continued and then they heard a nasally trumpeting sound, followed by a rather human snorting. Credence hurried forward and they crested one enclosure, and there was Newt standing directly in front of an erumpent.

Frederick’s jaw dropped as he stared at the creature.

“Oh my…” Sebille whispered, and Percival watched, almost proudly as his family stared at Newt who was in element. Eleanor snorted, tail flicking slightly and she shook her large head, the bulge in her front area glowing slightly.

“See this is Eleanor. She caused quite the ruckus last year in Central Park.” Newt explained, patting her side lightly. Eleanor snorted, eating some nearby vegetation.

“Ma!!” Frederick hissed excitedly, practically hopping around in excitement. “It’s an erumpent! An actual erumpent!!”

“I can see that.” Sebille said with a smile.

“They can come over here and say hi if they want to. They just can’t make any sudden movements.” Newt explained. Frederick looked up at his mother pleadingly, and biting her lip worriedly, she nodded. Cora clung to her brother, while it seemed the triplets were more than content on staying where they were. Newt gently guided the two Fontaine children to Eleanor and gently patted her side, Newt ever observant of Eleanor, who didn’t seem particularly bothered. After a few moments, he guided the two children back to their mother. Frederick looked ecstatic.

“Did you see Ma!? I touched a erumpent!!”

“I saw!” Sebille exclaimed, kissing his cheek and then looked up at Newt. “Oh wow, Mr. Scamander…” Sebille breathed. “Do I have some questions for you!”

Newt blinked in surprise at Sebille and the eldest Graves sibling began to bombard him with questions, both about the case and the creatures involved. Elaine glanced over at the gentled, if not fond expression Percival had on his face, and he turned, heading up to the shack, a look on Percival’s face that was almost longing, before she reluctantly looked back at the contents of the case.

Truly...Newt Scamander was something different.

And maybe...that difference was just perfect for her older brother.


“Yes Mum...I know, I know. Don’t worry about us. We’ll visit when we get back, besides you know that Grandmum would just drive me and Newt mad. Especially with what’s going on right now.”

Tina looked at Theseus as the older auror continued chatting on the phone, before he hung up, sighing.

“Why she expects us to go whenever our grandmum is there is anyone’s guest.”

“Not a fun lady?”

“For Newt, she expects him to give up on his job, his creatures, settle down and stop being what she sees as an embarrassment to the family. Me, she wants me to marry some pureblood tart she picked from England and have as many great-grandchildren as I can give her, despite the fact I loathe Lady Malfoy ever since my first year in Hogwarts.”

“Is it really that much of a big deal to marry into a pureblood family in England?” Tina asked and Theseus shrugged.

“Probably more than I really care to find out.”

“It’s just so...ugh, here bloodlines aren’t as strict.”

“You just can’t marry a muggle, or interact.” Theseus added and Tina sighed.

“You feel the same way as Newt does, I presume.”

“My father’s a half-blood wizard. If my grandmum hadn’t said a thing or had even tried to be with my granddad, Newt and I might not exist.”

Tina was quiet as she followed Theseus down the stairs and into the bustle of the city.

“Your sister might be miserable as well…” Theseus said quietly and Tina snapped her head up to look at him. Theseus offered a smile. “Newt told me what happened. It’s hard for someone who’s naturally gifted as a legimens to find someone that they truly love. I’m happy for her.”

“...does anyone else know?”

“Not that I’m aware of. I just asked Newt where he had gotten the pastries that looked like Matilda, and he told me that part of the story. I don’t plan on saying anything either.” Theseus added.

“I know it’s not allowed and realistically, if this continues...Queenie knows that she and Jacob may have to seriously consider moving, but...she’s happy. And I can’t…”

“You can’t bring yourself to take that happiness from her.” Theseus finished softly. Tina nodded. He smiled. “I know the feeling.” He said and she chuckled.

“Newt is a bit easier to please. Give him a creature and he’s happy as a clam.”

“True, but I want him to find someone he’s happy with too. What is your sister always saying?”

“He needs a giver, not a taker.” Tina replied without thinking about it. He smiled.

“Pretty spot on. But knowing Newt he’ll drag his feet on that, as shy as he is.”

“...What about you? Any thoughts of marrying?” Tina asked.

“In the future maybe. If I’m going to marry, I’m going to marry someone that I actually love, not someone my grandmother chose for me or wants me to marry.”

“I-I see…”

He paused and turned around to look at her with a smile.

“Who knows, I may find that person here in America.” He added and she felt her face turn bright red. She hurried down the steps, keeping her eyes trained to the streets below, trying to calm her heart that had decided to race away from her.

So focused on her walk, she missed Theseus’s soft expression for a moment, before he shook his head and followed her into the crowd.


“Well you have quite possibly made my son go over the moon with seeing an actual Erumpent.” Sebille said with a chuckle, handing Newt a cup of tea as she exited the home and Newt offered a smile.

“I’m surprised he likes erumpents so much.”

“Probably the explosion horn part is what fascinates him.” Sebille admitted with an eye roll. “He’s a classic boy, all explosions or nothing at all.”
Newt chuckled.

“So...may I ask you something, Mr. Scamander?” She asked and he glanced at her as he took a sip.

“Do you like America?” She asked. “Given your history with the MACUSA, and the fact that our rules on magical creatures are...different...I’m surprised you haven’t tried to leave.”

“There are some matters that I object to...but not everything is so bad here. Some things are actually rather nice.”

“Some things? Or someone? An auror, I’m familiar with, perhaps?” Sebille asked and glanced at Newt who had gone quiet, looking away from her. “I’m an investigative reporter, Mr. Scamander...it’s part of my job to see things hidden in a person, but I’m not going to force you to admit something that you don’t want said outloud yet. Whatever your reasoning behind it, is your own reasoning. But...I’m curious. Do you like him?” Sebille asked, taking a sip of her coffee.

“...perhaps I do.” Newt finally admitted. “More than I can admit.”

“Why?”

“It’s...complicated.” Newt replied.

“I see...well anyway,” she began, only laughing when Credence and Frederick ran from the front, chasing after one another and ran around Sebille, “actually, could you go find Percival and tell him I need to talk to him for a moment?” She asked and Newt blinked, suspicious but she waved her hand. “Work related.”

“Oh…alright.” Newt said, nodding and then turning to enter the house, glancing back at Sebille who gave a gentle smile and ushered him away. Exhaling lightly, he made his way up the stairs towards where he could hear voices.


Percival glanced at Elaine who was humming as she made her way down the hall.

“You’re in a perky mood.” He muttered.

“Of course.”

“It’s going to rain tonight, how are you in such a perky mood?”

“Well I just had a wonderful time seeing creatures that I would never be able to see otherwise, and I happen to like the rain.” She responded with a smirk. He glanced at her curiously, before grabbing her arm and pulling her into his office.

“Okay, what are you up to?”

“Up to? I know no such thing.”

“Right, and I’m a monkey’s uncle.”

She smirked, glancing at him.

“What is it, Elaine?”

“You vanished pretty quickly after Newt showed us around the case. And you’ve been avoiding him ever since.” Percival blinked, cocking his head to the side.

“...and your point?” Percival finally asked.

“Just that for a man who seems to have been down in the case a few times, you seemed rather...smitten by him and how he treats his creatures, and not just the intricacy of the case.”

“Elaine-”

“You know he’s actually quite popular among the American witches and wizards. It’s probably the accent. People love the accent.”

Percival paused for a moment, thrown by the sudden change of direction in conversation. Elaine seemed to not notice.

“Jasper down in accounting was talking about him, and then there’s Sybil, Abbey, Nelson. Boy the rumors going through the hospital wing. So many asks to go out for coffee. Or tea I suppose.” She sang with a smile and watched as Percival’s eyes narrowed.

“And you’re telling me this because?”

“My point is, is that there are others who are interested in him.”

“Elaine, I don’t think it’d be appropriate.”

“Mercy Lewis, why are you avoiding him when you clearly like him?”

“Because.”

“Really?? Tell me the real reason why.”

“Because I said so, Elaine. I have my reasons!” He snapped and she huffed.

“Fine. But considering I eventually go out with the person when I was asked for a date, even if I was waiting for someone else, it’ll be your loss with Newt.” She returned and Percival glared at her.

“It’s not like that with us Elaine!” He argued back.

“Really? Then who do you like?”

“Who I like or dislike is not your business, Elaine.” Percival snapped. “Besides, I’m busy right now with other pressing matters with the case and protecting Newt, Credence, and Rosie to even try and ask him out!”

Elaine opened her mouth, only to pause when they heard feet hurrying away from them. The pair paused and looked at one another in confusion. Percival strained his ears and caught just the slightest sound of the backdoor closing with a loud bang. He could distantly hear his nieces and nephews all squealing in the front yard, likely with Calvin and Tristan, and Livia watching all of them. Glancing out the window, he saw Newt walking briskly over to Sebille, the oldest Graves sibling seeming to frown.

“Percy? What’s going on?”

“...Don’t know. But I’m going to find out." Percival said and he exited the room, Elaine behind him, heading down the stairs and opening the backdoor, entering the conversation in the backyard between Newt and Sebille.

“-here for the moment. Can you…”

“Of course...” Sebille was saying soothingly, glancing at Percival from the corner of her eye as he entered the backyard in a way that he knew he was in trouble, “get some bread from that bakery you mentioned a little while ago, I don’t mind watching the kids, and I’ll talk to Perry later.”

“...fine.” Newt muttered, looking at Percival for a moment in hurt confusion, before looking away and turning, disapparating away. Sebille turned to her brother and sister, hands on her hips.

“Mind telling me why Newt all of a sudden asked me to look over his case, Credence, and Rosie?”

“He might have overheard me teasing…”

“More like badgering…”

Teasing Percy about his crush on Newt.” Elaine continued. “He must have overheard us...”

“Well he seems to think Percy likes someone else.”

Percival blinked several times.

“...what?” Elaine asked. “Neither of us said…” she trailed off. “Wait...if he heard me asking you who you liked and your response...he could have thought…”

“What was your response?” Sebille asked.

“That it wasn’t like that for Newt and me and I was busy to ask him out...and I don’t want to scare-”

“Really?!” Sebille snapped, and then smacked her brother upside the head. “Mercy Lewis, for an auror you have no brain on this, you nincompoop. Newt Scamander doesn’t like some random American witch or wizard. He likes you.”

He blinked several times.

“But...” Percival trailed off, looked over Sebille’s shoulder where Newt had disapparated from. “Fuck…”

“Yes, fuck indeed.”

“I need-”

“What you need to do is to take a breather.” Sebille said, looking at Percival. “And you need to decide what you want. You can’t try to avoid your feelings with him, but get jealous if you even think that someone is trying to court him. That’s not fair to him, and that’s not fair to you. Let Newt go get some bread, let yourself calm down, and then you two can talk civilly.”

“You don’t know Newt, Seb. If this isn’t resolved now, it’s not going to be!” Percival snapped, going back indoors for a moment, exiting again, clutching his wand. “I’ll be back.”

And with a crack of the wind, he vanished.


Newt felt numb as he walked down the sidewalk, ignorant of those around him.

“It’s not like that with us Elaine!”

“Really? Then who do you like?”

“Who I like or dislike is not your business, Elaine. Besides, I’m busy right now with other pressing matters with the case and protecting Newt, Credence, and Rosie to even try and ask him out!”

So...there was someone Percival liked, though it clearly wasn’t him.

And to make matters worse, he was interfering.

Newt sighed, pushing back the burning in his eyes, rubbing them hard. At least he hadn’t made a fool of himself and had said anything to Percival. That would have been more embarrassing than he could probably have handled.

But now led to a bigger question, what was he supposed to do?

He had figured he was interfering with Percival’s life, but not to the extent that he apparently was. He’d have to talk to Madame President, perhaps he could transfer back to England, though he cringed at the mere thought of having to listen to his colleagues in the Ministry about having two children in tow. That wasn’t something he was-

His thoughts were abruptly jarred apart as he was pulled into an alleyway. Before he could even get his wits about him, a knife was pressed to his throat, halting any thought of fighting. He blinked and looked up to see one man in front of him, another, much broader one behind him and holding him still.

“Shut yer mouth, and hand over the cash.” The one in front of him said.

Bugger.

“I don’t have anything.” Newt muttered. The men seemed to not believe him and began to pat him down.

“I really don’t have anything of val-”

Newt’s comment was cut off as a blade pressed harder against his neck to silence him.

“Do you not understand what ‘shut yer mouth’ means?!” the man asked, accent so thick it took Newt a few moments to decipher what he had said, and he bit his lip to not respond as the other man patted at Newt’s pockets, jabbing him roughly in the stomach with his wand. “What’s this?”

“Ah...a stick?” Newt suggested, eyeing his wand and calculating the chances of him being able to grab his wand while not being cut or beaten up by the two men.

The men glared at him.

“A wise-guy, eh? Well you know what, we don’t like no wise-guys.”

Newt swallowed, wishing that wandless magic was something that he was a bit more gifted in as the one in front of him cracked his knuckles

A flash of blue hit the man advancing towards him crumpled to the ground. The man holding him let out a startled grunt, shoving Newt away, rushing towards his friend only to run face first into the nearby trash can lid as it flung up and the man followed his partner to the ground. Newt blinked several times, stunned before looking up as footsteps raced to him, and stared at the figure that scooped up his wand, barely breaking his stride.

“...Percival, what-”

Percival didn’t reply, just grabbed Newt by the arm as he stormed by, and dragged him out the other side of the alleyway, Newt stumbling to keep up with the other man’s gait as they headed towards Central Park.

“Fucking bastards! I swear! No-maj police are useless about cleaning up the fucking streets!”

“...Percival?” Newt finally managed. “What are you doing here?”

“I was looking for you.” Percival snapped, glancing back at Newt who seemed surprised.

“...Looking for me?”

“To apologize.”

“Apologize? For what?”

“For whatever you heard between me and Elaine. It wasn’t appropriate.” Percival said finally stopping and turning fully around. Newt blinked stunned. “And it’s a good thing I went looking too. Mercy Lewis, do you know what those no-majs could have done to you?!” He asked, lifting Newt’s head up a bit to examine his throat, frowning at the slight beading of blood from the thin cut.

“...You don’t have to worry about me, I’d have been perfectly alright. They’d have found something to sell and left me alone. I really should be apologizing to you. I should have realized that I was probably interfering with your relationships. I’ll talk to Madame President-”

“Newt, for fuck’s sake, I didn’t come here to tell you that I hate the fact that you were living with me! The exact opposite, and I don’t want you to fucking go somewhere else!”
It was as though the heavens decided to open up in that very moment, and rain fell down from the heavens. It was slow, the pitter-patter against the leaves of the trees nearby slowly growing faster, until the birds grew silent and the roar of the rain filled the air.

Neither man moved away, seeming to barely notice the rain as it fell around them.

“Oh…” Newt trailed off before his eyes widened. “Oh! I…but why? I mean I’m not-”

“You ARE, Newt. You’re important, more important than you realize, to so many people! You’re cared by Queenie, Tina, me, my family, Theseus. You are so important for-”

Newt stared at him with large eyes, as Percival rubbed the bridge of his nose.

“...I’m...important to you? I can’t be...I can’t be important to you.” Newt managed, swallowing audibly.

“Why?” Percival asked, taking a step forward. He’d missed something before, several times. He wasn’t going to avoid it now.

“I-I just can’t.”

“Why?”

“Because I’m not important! I’m a bother, a distraction! A fre-”

Percival grabbed Newt’s jacket by the lapels and pulled him forward and claimed his mouth with his. He felt Newt gasp softly against his mouth, stiffening for a moment as though unsure if this was happening. As Percival began to move away, as though backtracking what he had done, Newt suddenly clung to him, pressing close to Percival, bending down as much as he could do comfortably.

The two only parted when the desire for air became greater than the desire to feel one another. Percival stared at Newt, whose cheeks were a bright shade of red, his breath coming in shaky pants, eyes wide and glistening as rain slid down his cheeks, hair plastered to his forehead.

“You are important Newt. More than you can ever imagine to me.” Percival managed. “You’re far from a bother, far from a distraction.”

“But-”

The pair seemed to realize where they were at the same moment, and both cast a glance over each other, seeing if there was anyone around them. And though there was no one there...the threat of being discovered was still too real.

“Let’s discuss this inside, alright?” Percival muttered and Newt nodded, and clutched Percival’s hand as they walked to an alleyway and then, with a crack of wind, the pair vanished.


He was stalling.

Newt fiddled with his wet clothes, trying to work the buttons, but the sudden shaking in his fingers made it practically impossible. He felt his cheeks flush as the scene played over and over in his head.

And now he was avoiding him, Sebille apparently still keeping an eye on Credence and Rosie while he and Percival changed out of their wet clothes. But the way she blinked at him...

Bollocks, now he had really-

He jumped slightly when a warm towel dropped over his head. He looked up to see Percival standing there, his prosthetic gone.

“Is your arm...”

“Achy...It never does well in weather like this.” Percival replied and Newt offered a sound of recognition. There was silent for a moment.

“...I’m not going to pretend to know that I have all the answers, Newt. Life doesn’t work like that.” Percival finally said, glancing up at Newt as the young man stared at him from under the towel.

“I don’t know where this is going to go, what’s going to happen to us. But...I’m willing to try and see it through to the end.”

Newt was quiet, stewing over the words and finally looked at Percival in the eyes.

“I’m sorry if I startled you earlier.” Percival amended and Newt laughed weakly.

“It wasn’t rejected was it?” Newt asked, cocking his head to the side and the edge of Percival’s mouth twitched upwards.

“No I suppose it wasn’t. But are you alright with it? With this?”

“I...I’m not exactly an expert in this, being in a relationship that is.” Newt finally said after a moment, “I’m going to make a mess of things. I know that but I...” He trailed off with a huff, looking away for a moment then looking at him. “I’d like to try at least as well.”

Percival was quiet and then pulled Newt closer, pressing their foreheads together, letting out a breath slowly.

“Alright.”

And Newt couldn’t help but relent as Percival pulled him closer and when Percival kissed him again, the world seem to be complete.

And right then that was enough.

Chapter Text

“I’m back.” Tina called out as she entered the apartment, sighing loudly as she peeled her jacket off. “Queenie?”

“Living room, hon…” She heard and stretched, kicking her shoes off, stopping briefly to get herself a cup of water. She paused when she saw Queenie sitting at the couch, holding a cup of tea.

“Queenie?”

Queenie looked up and smiled.

“So, how was your day?” She asked as Tina sat down, frowning at her sister in confusion.

“Pretty quiet overall. Theseus and I researched a bit more, but nothing much. What about you?”

“...Jacob asked me to marry him.”

Tina choked on her sip of water, staring at her sister with wide eyes and forced it down, coughing to clear her throat.

“He...he did?”

“Mhm…”

“A...and…?”

Queenie was smiling, eyes glimmering with unshed tears.

“...I said yes.”

Tina stared at her for a few moments, before her eyes began to well up. Queenie frowned.

“Oh, Teenie…”

“I’m happy! Really, I am.” Tina interrupted, sniffling loudly. “I’m happy for you. I mean...you’ve wanted to a family for a long time, and well...I know it looks like I’m upset, but I’m not.” She hurriedly added, sniffling.

Queenie stood and went over to Tina’s side, dragging her older sister in for a hug. Tina blinked several times, sniffling.

“I know you’re happy...but also sad, because I won’t be able to stay with you.”

“I’ll manage. You know that.” Tina said, weakly. “Jacob is the perfect man for you.”

Queenie smiled tearfully, laughing weakly, curling up to her sister.

“Mama and Papa would have been happy for you, Queenie.” Tina assured. “Just like I am.”

“What about you?”

“What about me?” Tina said and Queenie sighed.

“I know that you have feelings for Theseus, and I didn’t have to read your mind for that.”

“He’s a war hero, Queenie, and probably has some other girl he’d be more attracted to.” Tina replied.

“And how would you know?” Queenie asked.

“Need I remind you of my dating attempts before? Men don’t like a woman who is a ‘career-girl’.”

“Oh Teen…”

“I’ll manage.” Tina replied, with a sigh. “I always do. But enough about me. What about you. You said yes, but...what are you going to do?” She asked. “The MACUSA won’t…”

“We’ve begun discussing it.” Queenie admitted. “We have a lot to discuss, but we’re going to do it together.”

“Are you going to well...you know...leave the wizarding world? Give up your wand, settle, and become a no-maj?”

Queenie winced, her hand gesturing to her head.

“I don’t know if I could, Tina. With all that in my head.” She said and Tina watched her sister seeming to wilt. Well that wouldn’t do. Not one bit. She stood up and went to her baby sister, gathering her in her arms.

“Then we’ll figure it out. Together. You and me. You won’t be alone, Queenie...I won’t let you.” Queenie blinked several times and sniffled, curling up to her older sister, the brunette carding her fingers lightly through the blonde’s hair, soothingly.

It was almost nostalgic, Tina mused as they sat there in the quiet of their apartment. When they had been younger, after their parents died, they would hold each other like this whenever they were scared of what the future held. But they had persevered then...they would persevere now.

“We’re sisters. We stick together.” Tina promised and Queenie nodded, curling up to her sister, smiling slightly as she closed her eyes, comforted by her older sister.


“So, is everything good between the two of you?” Sebille asked as Percival looked at her. He didn’t reply, but the faint color ghosting his cheeks was enough for Sebille, who smiled coyly. “Ahhhh, very good it would seem.”

“Seb.” Percival groaned, looking at his older sister in annoyance and Sebille chuckled, going on tiptoes and grabbing the bottle of Campbell’s Dragon Fire Whiskey as well as two glasses.

“Honestly, I don’t get how you can drink this pig shit.” She muttered under her breath. “The Phantom Nectar is much better.”

“That’s too sweet for me.”

Sebille rolled her eyes, handing him a glass partially filled with the whiskey. “That explains a lot.”

“...Newt said you wanted to talk to me?” Percival prompted, ignoring his sister’s comment. Sebille was quiet for a few minutes, staring at her glass.

“There have been...ripples in my channels.” Sebille said quietly, taking a sip of her drink, wincing. Percival looked at her, concern growing.

“...Seb?”

“Grindelwald is apparently getting impatient with whatever his followers are doing here. He’s particularly interested in finding a certain one, though my contact didn’t know which one.”

“Possibly the one that is taking the children.”

“Yes, but...it’s strange.”

“What is?”

“Grindelwald getting impatient. If he is behind snatching the kids, he has to know it wasn’t going to be a quick thing. He spent a month just to build up trust with Credence to look for the Obscurus. Who knows how long he was willing to go if the plot hadn’t been discovered.”

Percival was quiet.

“...you think that the children aren’t connected to Grindelwald?”

“I’m not sure what to think. Rosalind’s parents were involved in poisonings prior, not kidnapping, if Theseus’s case in any indication. Why would they specifically come here to snatch children? Grindelwald is probably trying to snatch as many followers as he can convert, but he’s starting a bit young don't you think? Most of these kids haven’t even reached school age.”

“I agree on that part.” Percival muttered and Sebille looked at him, frowning worriedly at him.

“...Be careful Percival. I don’t want to get another message that you’ve been hurt again.”

“I always am careful.”

“Where have I heard that before?” She asked with a soft smile and Percival snorted, taking a sip of his drink. “Good luck, Percival.”

“Luck will have no bearing on the outcome of this case. Just good hard work.” He replied and she smirked.

“Always practical.”

“Always.” He replied with a smirk and she chuckled raising her glass slightly before they both took a sip.

“...so are you going to be taking him out on a date anytime soon? Because if so, I have some suggestions.”

And Percival groaned, drowned out by Sebille’s laugh.


One of these days he was going to drown in paperwork, Percival decided as he read through another report.

Nothing. It was if whoever the kidnapper was had gone silent.

Which didn’t meet the MO of a serial kidnapper.

Perhaps they weren’t connected. No...that wasn’t right. They were...he just didn’t know how. But he needed to figure it out. Soon.

He grumbled under his breath as a knock sounded.

“What?”

“Oh...are you busy?”

Percival looked up, blinking several times and feeling heat crawl the back of his neck as Newt entered, Rosie nestled in a sling, while Credence peered from behind the magizoologist.

“No...No, I’m not busy...just a bit tired.” Percival amended. “Sorry for snapping.”

Newt frowned in concern, shifting and going over to the Director’s side.

“Perhaps I can make you some tea.”

“Newt, I’m fine.”

He was pouting, he was seriously pouting. Percival had to fight the laugh that yearned to come out as he watched Newt’s expression.

“Newt, honestly I’m fine. You don’t need to worry about me.”

“I know that...still, it wouldn’t hurt…” He trailed off, his cheeks growing red in color as Percival walked directly to him, staring at him with dark eyes. Newt swallowed, unable to think straight, and the impression of thought flew out the window as Percival cupped his cheek, forcing him to look at him.

“I’m sorry.”

“Don’t be.” Percival replied, pressing a quick kiss to Newt, before moving away, seemingly reading the file he was holding, laughing under his breath at Newt’s sputtering.

“That’s twice!” Newt squawked as Percival glanced up at him amused.

“Twice?”

“Twice, twice you’ve kissed me by surprise.”

“How observant of you.” Percival replied with a smirk, leaning against his desk as Newt huffed, his cheeks red as he strode forward, placing his hands on either side of Percival, effectively pinning him to the desk. Percival stared at him, head cocked to the side, brow raised.

“That’s not fair you know.”

“It isn’t?” Percival asked.

“No, not at all.” Newt replied, pointing at Rosie who giggled at that moment. “See? Even she agrees.”

“Is that right? And what are you going to do to remedy that, Mr. Scamander?” Percival teased, and Newt’s face turned redder, looking away. Percival began to shift away, opening his file again.

And Newt’s hands cupped his face and pulled Percival’s face back, before kissing him soundly. When Newt finally moved away, Percival blinked several times as Rosie shifted in her sling, confused as to why she was suddenly squished for a moment.

“Well...that’s one.” Percival remarked, sounding dazed, looking at Newt who pushed his hair back, his cheeks red, looking away from him. “...You don’t have to force yourself, you know.” Percival remarked with a sigh and Newt glanced back at him. “If you’re uncomfortable-”

“I’m not...I’m just not used to someone who actually…” He trailed off. “...you shouldn’t have to do all the work.” Newt muttered. Percival stared at him as the British man seemed to draw in on himself.

He couldn’t help but feel a stab of anger towards the British society embed in his gut. To make someone as innocent as Newt, as kind as Newt, feel so unnecessary and so unwanted. Newt looked back at Percival as the older man cupped his cheek.

“You’re doing perfectly fine, Newt.” Newt looked at him, blinking several times at the smile on Percival’s face. “You don’t have to rush things if you’re not comfortable. I’m a patient person.”

Newt bit his bottom lip for a moment, then looked at him.

“Can I kiss you?”

Percival chuckled.

“Yes, Newt. You can.”

Newt offered a shaky laugh and bent forward, and the Director of Magical Security accepted the soft and tentative kiss, the pair ever mindful of the infant pressed to Newt’s chest.

“Newt, you in there? I have a question regarding-”

The two parted quickly, and Percival managed to glare at the door as Tina stared at the two, wide eyes bouncing back and forth, before her cheeks went red.

“O-oh...well…” Tina cleared her throat, trying to look anywhere but Newt and Percival.

Newt’s face was a blistering red now, and Rosie was staring up at him, gnawing on her fist, cooing. Credence seemed unbothered by the awkwardness that had grown prevalent in the room, beaming up at Tina.

“Hi Miss Tina!!”

“...Yes, Goldstein?” Percival said as casually as he could.

“Creature...question. I have a question about a creature.” Tina hurriedly said, clearing her throat again. Newt’s face was a deep shade of red, and he was looking everywhere BUT Percival or
Tina.

“O-oh of course.” Newt stammered out, glancing at Percival for a moment, who nodded and the British man went over to the female auror, followed by the kids. Tina offered an apologetic glance before the group vanished around the corner. He sighed in exasperation.

“Fuck me sideways, does no one understand the concept of knocking?”

“Was that a question directed to me?”

He glanced up and stiffened as Seraphina entered the room.

“No, Madame President. I was just-”

“Knocking aside,” Seraphina said with smirk, looking at him, “I was informed that earlier last night, two no-maj’s were attacked by magical means. Strangely enough, there is suspicion that the magic came from your wand as you were in the vicinity.”

“You wouldn’t be far off.”

“...Percival, you broke the Rappaport Law and-”

“They were muggers...They’re of the criminal jurisdiction, just no-maj’s. I don’t really see the problem with that.”

“You could have dealt with them in a different manner, Percival. You’re supposed to set up a good example for your subordinates.”

“I was protecting my ward, seeing as you assigned me to watch over Newt, who was being mugged by the two no-maj’s, Phina. One had a knife to Newt’s throat. Any option to do the no-maj way would have risked his life. It was quick in any case. I doubt the first one knew what hit him, and the other barely got to understand his partner was down before he was out too.”

“...Of course it would be Scamander’s fault.”

“No. And Newt was the one to actually follow the rule, Seraphina.” Percival refuted, frowning. “I was just trying to protect him.”

“Mr. Scamander’s record of not getting into trouble here is very small, Percival.”

“Has he done anything as of late I was not made aware of?” Percival asked blandly and Seraphina’s eyes narrowed, analyzing.

“Well is there a reason that Mr. Scamander, the infant, and...the boy left so quickly from your office?”

“None of immediate concern.” He replied and then looked at his friend. “You still see him as a danger don’t you?”

“He has a magical case with creatures, my concern is-”

“Not with Newt.” Percival interrupted, standing. “With Credence. He still worries you.”

“...Percival, I know that physically he’s a child, but-”

“You look at him as though his head is going to rotate 360 degrees, Phina.” Percival interrupted with a frown. “And don’t think I haven’t noticed that each time you’ve been so much as in the same room as him, you’re hand is always by your wand. He hasn’t done anything to warrant that.”

“He’s a risk, Percival.” Seraphina replied.

“Phina...what happened a year ago-”

“Is what? Not going to happen again?” Seraphina interrupted. “You can’t know that.”

“Just like you can’t know that it is. You aren’t making it better Phina if you treat him like a human bomb every single time you so much as spot him. He’s a child, Phina. Not a killer.”

“He’s killed three people that we know of, Percival. And that’s not counting those who may have been injured and killed-”

She paused and looked over to the door, frowning. Percival did as well.

They could have sworn footsteps were rushing away.

Percival walked over to the door, and peered out, to see nothing. His frown grew. Something had been there. His instincts were telling him as much.

“Graves, I hope I won’t have to warn you again. Do not-”

“Bend the Rappaport Law, or risk the Statute, I understand. Excuse me.” Percival said hurriedly, exiting his office. Seraphina frowned, following him out slowly as he walked towards the other desks, walking where she could see Newt Scamander and Tina Goldstein were. She could easily spot the baby that was sitting on Newt’s lap, supported by the magizoologist. Newt looked up, and seemed to frown. He then looked at Newt and began to speak.

“Isn’t Credence with you? He wanted to ask you…”

Newt trailed off, and though Seraphina couldn’t see Percival’s expression, she could picture it as something akin to worry crossed over Scamader’s face. Her heart skipped a beat.


“He’s killed three people that we know of, Percival. And that’s not counting those who may have been injured and killed…”

“Do you think I’m a freak?”

“No-I think you’re a very special young man or I wouldn’t have asked you to help me, now would I?”

“You have magical ancestry, but no power.”

“You’re unteachable. Your mother’s dead. That’s your reward.”

“Your ma was a wicked, unnatural woman!!”

“I’m done with you.”

“You can control it, Credence.”

“...But I don’t think I want to, Mr. Graves.”

Credence stumbled out of the Woolworth Building, clutching his head as screams echoed in his head, mingling with his heartbeat, and the burning pain that went through him made it almost impossible to stand. He could feel the bile rising in his throat and he gagged. He had killed...he had killed people. Hurt people.

Monster. He was a monster.

“And what do monsters do, Credence?”

“Monster’s must repent.”

“Repent...” He murmured, sniffling and then looked out towards the streets. Inhaling shakily, he straightened and then began to hurry down the sidewalk, seemingly guided by a phantom force.

Back towards home.


“There are hundreds of floors up and down. He could be anywhere in the building, Newt.” Tina explained, trying to soothe. “But if he’s here, he’s in the safest-”

Newt glared at Tina, who quickly went silent.

“I’m not saying he’s not safe here. But if there are still Grindelwald followers or sympathizers, they could have the very boy that Grindelwald tried to capture before. And not to mention he’s an eight year old boy, the same age group that your missing children are.” Newt remarked. Tina stiffened, glancing at Percival who cursed under his breath, turning and storming to his office, grabbing his wand. He’d start from the basement and go up if he had to, and so help him, if someone had snatched Credence-

“Perhaps you’re looking in the wrong direction.”

Percival turned around to see Seraphina walk calmly around the corner, frowning, an edge of bitterness digging into his side. He inhaled and exhaled slowly, calming himself.

“...What are you talking about, Phina?”

“You and Mr. Scamander may have no qualms with ignoring the boy’s history, but I have not.”

“Sera-”

“And he’s back in the city he grew up in. Is it impossible for him to have remembered certain locations that held significance to him when he was older?”

Percival went quiet as Seraphina looked at him.

“He may not be the killer that I fear he could become, but he’s still a New Yorker.” Seraphina replied, turning around. “Perhaps you should think like one.”

Percival was quiet as she left and then grabbed his wand and stormed out of his office, nearly bowling over Tina.

“Goldstein, help Newt search the building. Start from the basement and head up.”

“Where are you going?”

“I have an idea where he could be.” Percival replied, pulling on his coat. “I’m going to check it out. But I don’t want this place to not be checked. Do that for me.”

“...Yes Sir.” Tina said, but Percival barely heard it over the echoes of his footsteps rushing down the hall.


It wasn’t likely...he wouldn’t have remembered this place. At least he had hoped he wouldn’t remember this place. Cursing to himself that they didn’t have enough information on Credence Barebone’s past, Percival quietly walked towards the one building he could think of that Credence would have gone to.

The Second Salemers Church.

He paused as it got into his sights and stared at the rotting building, feeling a layer of filth and grime, adding to a layer of guilt, coat over him. No one had touched it since a year ago, strange as it was. No-maj’s walked quickly by, averting their heads from the place where ‘two women died in a gas explosion’, while the wizarding world ignored and left it as a festering wound.

A reminder.

The irony was not lost on him and he hoped that Credence couldn’t remember such a horrid place…

But it was the best Percival could come up with.

A part of him wondered how many times Grindelwald had set foot in here. How many times that the man had manipulated Credence with promise of acceptance and someone to actually care for him. How many times had Credence felt safe with a man who had used his face only to be betrayed.

He slowly stepped into the church, wincing as the wood creaked loudly.

At first he heard nothing. Then there was a slight shift above him.

“...Who's there?”

Relief flooded him in an instant.

“Credence...it’s just me.” Percival called out and there was a sniffle.

“...Oh.”

Percival glanced up towards the second floor as another sniffle echoed in the room, then looked around the destroyed church, wood rotting and the stank of mold prominent in the air. Honestly it had been the first time he had actually been there, never having the guts to come to this place, just memorizing the address so he would actively avoid it. But now...now he couldn’t. Slowly he walked up the stairs, avoiding rotten stairs and easily spotted the boy curled up on the slight step to the rooms, staring blankly out through the railings.

“...You had us all worried Credence. Newt’s going crazy trying to find you.”

“Why? Scared I’m going to hurt someone again?”

Percival inwardly winced.

“Credence…” Percival said, walking over to the small form curled up and sitting down next to him. “What you heard between me and Picquery-”

“It’s okay...I more than deserved it.”

Percival went quiet as Credence glanced around with blotchy eyes.

“This was where I was raised...right? This church? Ma...Ma put us in rooms up here. If we got in trouble, we’d have to stand in the hall overlooking the church...so God would see us punished for our sins and we could repent.” Credence looked out towards the decayed balcony. “I got punished a lot. I deserved it, because I was a sin...a wicked boy. But it didn’t work. I can’t repent...monsters can’t repent.”

“No...Credence…”

“I killed people...haven’t I?” Credence interrupted and Percival paused, swallowing roughly as tears welled up in the boy’s eyes. “Guess you were right. I am useless.”

“You aren’t useless, Credence. And what happened...it wasn’t your fault.”

Credence looked at him with an expression of disbelief and Percival exhaled softly sitting next to him on the dusty floor.

“A...bad man...impersonated me to get close to you. The Percival Graves your...past self...remembers, was him. He knew that you were connected to what he was looking for, he just didn’t know how connected you were until it was too late and you had been pushed too far off the edge.”

Credence sniffled.

“What...what was he looking for?”

Percival hesitated for a moment.

“...has Newt ever told you what an Obscurus is?”

“A little…” he muttered, then was quiet. “But then I remember burning pain...the screaming and when I tell him, he just stops talking about it. Was I that?”

“An obscurus...an obscurus is the manifestation of the repressed energy of a magical child...either through physical or psychological abuse.” Percival explained. “Your adoptive mother, Mary Lou Barebone, believed the magical world existed, and sought to find and destroy it.”

“What did that have to do with me and an obscurus?” Credence muttered.

“Your adoptive mother...from what I could find, had a bad experience when she was younger with a wizard, and had bloodlines of a Scour. Though she was obliviated, and that part of her bloodline was hidden from her, that...hatred...festered and grew in her, and even though she couldn’t quite place where she got this hatred, she became obsessed with discovering and destroying witches and wizards. And for her, that started out with finding children that either had or had the potential of becoming magical. You had that potential, though it was incredibly stunted and made more so when you were placed in Mary Lou’s care. Grindelwald was seeking that power...and used you to try and find it, however-”

“...I became an Obscurus.” Credence whimpered and Percival went silent, his throat feeling as though he had swallowed jagged glass.

“Yes...but far later than any Obscurus has been known to develop.” Percival replied and Credence curled up and Percival sighed, pushing his hair back a bit, causing the young boy to look up. “I’m not going to lie to you, Credence. What happened last year was a traumatic event for this country’s wizarding population. And there will be some who fear or hate you because of that.” Percival said quietly and Credence curled up, sniffling. “However, what happened to you is a result of failure on our part, and as Director of Security, I can’t with a good conscience blame you. You were just as much a victim in all this as everyone else. The only villain here was Gellert Grindelwald.”

“...Do you hate me?” Credence asked after a few moments of silence, and Percival glanced at him. “Grindelwald hurt you...to try and get to me...if I hadn’t existed, then-”

“I don’t hate you, Credence.”

The little boy looked up, eyes beginning to glimmer again.

“What happened between Grindelwald and me is between the two of us...you’re not to blame for it. You were just stuck in the middle. He’s a sick individual, Credence. You’re not. I’m sorry we made you feel like you were.”

And the young boy broke.

Sobbing, he wrapped his arms around Percival’s waist, pressing his face into the Director’s side. Percival blinked for a moment, before wrapping his arms around Credence protectively, patting his back as the boy sobbed.

He wasn’t a cold-blooded murderer, wasn’t a toy for Grindelwald to take advantage of later on. He was just a child. A scared kid.

He was Credence.

That was enough for him.

“...Come on.” He said as Credence began to calm down. “Let’s get back to Newt, alright?”

“...Is he worried?”

“Immensely.” Percival responded truthfully, standing and helping the young boy up. He rubbed his sleeve under his nose. “I’m sorry again that we’ve made you feel this way, Credence. It won’t happen again. I promise.”

Credence was quiet, before nodding, taking a firm hold of Percival’s hand. Credence offered a soft smile, which Percival returned.

“Alright. So hold on tight.”

“Okay.”

And with a pop, he disapparated out of the decaying church, landing in the alleyway near the Woolworth Building. Credence stumbled a bit, clinging to Percival’s hand now.

“Sorry.”

“It’s okay.” Credence murmured as the pair entered the building. They managed to get the Security department with relative ease. But the moment they entered his office, they spotted Newt, along with Tina and Queenie who all looked up. Newt stood abruptly.

“Credence!!”

“Hi Mister Scamander.” Credence murmured, flushing lightly as the British magizoologist hurried over to them, hands flitting over the young boy to ensure everything WAS fine.

“Where in heaven’s name did you go?” Newt asked anxiously, and Credence glanced up at Percival worriedly, unsure what to actually tell him.

“He was...near Central Park.” Percival lied, and Newt looked up at him, brows furrowing and clearly spotting the lie for what it was. But Newt’s expression gentled at the relief on Credence’s face and it seemed the magizoologist let it go. For the moment at least.

“Alright. Well, I’m glad you found him, Percival.” Newt finally said, straightening back up and as Newt began scolding Credence to not wander, Percival went over to the lounger and picked up a wide awake Rosie, whose tiny feet kicked excitedly when he walked up to her.

“What’s with all that energy?” Percival muttered as Rosie giggled, babbling at him. He forced himself not to smile as he cradled her in his arms.

“She likes you, you know.”

He jumped and looked up to see Queenie Goldstein standing there, smiling brightly as she watched the two of them. He felt heat crawl up the back of his neck.

“Ms. Goldstein...Queenie…” he corrected, “I’ve told you...I would prefer-”

“That’s all from Rosie, Mr. Graves.” Queenie interrupted with a bright smile, which only grew as Percival blinked.

“...she’s a baby.”

“Babies have thoughts too, Mr. Graves. They aren’t as...coherent or connected as adults, and mostly are just feelings rather than full on conversations, but they’re still there. And she likes you. A whole lot might I add.”

Percival stared at Queenie for a moment who glanced at the little girl snug in his arms.

“She feels safe with you, Mr. Graves. And for a baby, feeling safe is important.” Queenie explained, running a finger over the little girl’s knuckle earning a giggle from the infant, which she smiled in return. Percival glanced down at Rosie, who had begun gnawing on her fist, before looking at him, staring at him for a few moments, before giving another gummy smile, and he couldn’t stop the warm ache burrowing into his chest and rippling outwards through his body.

And if Queenie noticed the fond expression on The Director of Magical Security’s face as she left the office, she didn’t voice it as she quietly closed the door and let the pair alone from prying eyes.

Percival Graves seemed to deserve that much.


“Did you know that in the muggle world, your preferences on a partner is not well received?”

Percival barely blinked, his eyes glassed over as a pair of feet entered his line of sight, only flinching as a cool hand pushed through his hair, brushing down his cheek, and over his lips, before cupping his neck.

“Of course you do. Though earlier this decade it must have been fun, what being basically ignored and all, but now? Just last year, twenty restaurants and ‘personality clubs’ as you American’s call it, for your people, was reduced to three. Muggles, hm? So stuck on their ideals of what is right and wrong in matters of affection, they don’t take it in consideration that not everyone else is just like them. And those that are different have to hide.”

Percival swallowed roughly, flinching as Grindelwald tightened his grip on his neck, his other hand gliding over the mark on his back.

“It’s such a shame to hide, isn’t it? Doesn’t it hurt to hide away what you love because others deem it as a disgusting habit?”

Before moving lower, lower, and lower.

“How must it feel to not have a single person care about you? To not notice?”

Percival pushed back the burning in his eyes, grunting as his head was forced further forward.

“What man would want you now, Percival? Your arm, your leg gone? Your reputation, shattered...”

Several tears escaped, dripping onto the carpet, much to Grindelwald’s enjoyment as his head was forced further down again, until he was touching the stone floor with his forehead.

“No person would want someone as broken and used as you. Especially one that is already mine. A broken, used toy, Percival...my toy.”

Percival couldn't stop the sound that escaped, Grindelwalds breath prickling against his neck.

“And no one can share.”

“Percival?”

He awoke with a start, blinking several times before he felt a hand cupped his face, tracing his cheek gently, hesitantly. Gentle?? Grindelwald was never-

Blue-green eyes stared at him from above, glittering with concern and slowly the world cleared and Newt was sitting next to him on the edge of the sofa in his living room.

“Percival?” Newt said gently, wiping his thumb lightly under the older man’s eye which, to his embarrassment, was wet and burning with unshed tears.

“Fine...I’m fine.” He rasped. Clearly Newt seemed to disagree, and clearly it was a lie, but thankfully he let it go.

“...It’s been a little while since you’ve had a nightmare.” Newt commented gently as Percival sat up, pinching the bridge of his nose.

“Sorry, did I wake you?”

“No. I just got out of the case and was going to make myself a spot of tea before bed. Spotted you here though and you looked like you were in pain.”

“You just...it’s nearly midnight.” Percival prompted, glancing at the ancient grandfather clock over Newt’s shoulder.

“Phoebe wasn’t feeling well.” Newt replied, ignoring the blatant change of subject.

“Tell me, do you ever sleep a normal sleep schedule?”

Newt chuckled softly.

“Not really...when you’re on your own, and going into different timezones, a sleep schedule isn’t the most important item on the list.” Newt replied. “Do you?”

“Usually. It’s been pretty much destroyed as of late, though...don’t think that will change anytime soon.”
Newt was quiet for a moment, then stood and walked to the side of the couch his head was resting on before Newt sat down in that spot where his head had been. A slight tap on his forehead.

“Lie down.”

“Pardon?”

“Just trust me, alright?” Newt asked. He blinked several times, glancing at Newt who was staring at him with a shy smile for a moment, before he did as he was told and he held back the sigh as Newt began gliding his fingers lightly in his hair.

“Usually if any of my creatures seem to not be able to sleep, physical proximity seems to do the trick.”

“...Did you just compare me to your creatures?”

“Is it working?” Newt asked, refraining from laughing as Percival’s eyes fluttered closed when he brushed a hand through his hair massaging around his temple.

“Possibly...it’s a nice alternative to...”

Newt glanced at Percival as a dark look passed over his face for a moment, before seeming to curl up towards him, unwilling to elaborate. Newt frowned for a moment, but decided against asking, instead continued to brush his fingers against Percival’s face and through his hair, the older man relaxing against him, comforted by the quiet of the night.

And that was enough for Newt.

Chapter Text

Newt knew he wasn’t the most knowledgeable when it came dating. He had few relationships in his travels, if he could even call a date a ‘relationship’. Barely any lasted longer than what he had gone to the country to do, and many were simply a trade to get into a smugglers location and save the creatures that would likely be killed by said date. The only one he could possibly conceive as a bit more since Leta was Madame Margaux, the head of the creature smuggling ring that he ran into regularly...and even then it was more of a cat and mouse relationship. A cat and mouse relationship he hoped he wouldn’t re-encounter anytime soon. So when Percival Graves had suggested that Credence and Rosie stayed with his sister for a few hours and they go out to eat, it had taken him a few moments to realize he had been asked out on a date.

And a date he was on...at least he hoped it was. He glanced at Percival as they stood in the car of the subway train, shifting slightly as he was jostled by a turn of the machine. Percival looked up at him, smirking.

“Now I know you have a subway system in London. Theseus made sure to drag me on one when I visited there to prove that London’s Underground was better than here.”

“I ah...use it every now and then. It’s a bit easier to just use the Knight Bus for me though-”

“I hated that thing.”

“Come off it, it wasn’t that bad.”

“Who the hell was driving yours then?” Percival scoffed as the station car slowed to a stop. “I nearly lost my lunch with the man driving, and I’m quite sure I saw my life pass by my eyes at least twice.”

Newt laughed.

“I found it rather exciting, actually.” Newt replied and Percival rolled his eyes.

“Of course you would.”

Newt smiled as they disembarked the subway and headed up the stairs. Percival seemed to be in better spirits than he had the night before. A welcomed change.

“New York is incredibly different than what I ever imagined it to be.” Newt remarked as he glanced around.

“Oh?”

“Mhm. Like I told Tina...the layout is so different from those in Africa, Europe, England, Asia…” He explained and Percival glanced at him. “Many of those countries keep many of the original architecture. Here, there is some, but not nearly as much as other countries.”

“Well in the heart of the city, there has to be updated to comply with building codes, and such.” Percival explained. “That being said, a lot of our...kind...do tend to keep the houses our founding families lived in. It’s a lot easier to maintain those homes and add on if necessary.”

“I see.” Newt remarked.

“Where does your family live?”

“Oh ah...my father’s mother’s side is rather entwined in British politics.” Newt muttered. “So she has multiple properties...my parents chose one further into the countryside.”

“Because of the hippogriffs?”

“Mhm...Grandmother didn’t approve, but my father married my mother, and unless she wanted to lose her only son...she’d have to indulge him...I suppose she was hoping that my brother and I wouldn’t follow our mother’s lead...”

Percival glanced at Newt, frowning at the rueful expression on the British man’s face, before the younger man shook his head and gave a bright, if a bit forced, smile.

“So...this place…The Pearl’s Medallion?”

“Oh, right. It’s over there. It’s a rather popular diner here for the Wizarding Society. The owner named it after his youngest daughter who was the first witch in a generation.”

“Really?”

“Mhm. He was a squib, but his parents kept him involved in our society. Since he couldn't be completely involved in, he decided to make a restaurant that catered to them. It's pretty popular for them, so they can be with their wizarding family.”

“I see.” Newt remarked for a moment, slowly as he looked around and blanched as he spotted Queenie and Jacob turning the corner as Percival glanced towards the diner.

“We don’t have to go here, if you would prefer-”

“Nope, this is fine!” He said hurriedly, loudly enough for Queenie to perk her head up. Out of the corner of Newt’s eye he saw her hurriedly drag Jacob back around the corner.

“Newt?”

“Fine! I’m fine! Let’s go eat.” He said hurriedly with a big smile and Percival cast him a strange look, before walking into the diner. True to Percival’s word, it was rather filled, boisterous laughter and voices filling the air. It seemed that Percival was right, this was certainly much more popular than the diners he had been to. He could barely hear Percival speaking as they were seated the conversations discussing anything random that came to mind. And Newt couldn’t really remember a time where he didn’t feel foolish when speaking.

“I'm surprised. Tina says that you don't really eat out. Or at least with company.” Newt remarked with a grin, and Percival’s gaze narrowed.

“I swear, just because I don't desire to go drinking with them every time they go to a speakeasy…” he trailed off at Newt’s coy smile. “You were teasing.”

“Perhaps.”

“Oh that was cruel.”

“I never said I was a cruel person, Mister Graves.” Newt teased lightly. “I just prefer-”

“Traitor…”

Percival stiffened, his gaze shifting to where he could see several wizards sitting at a table, staring at him. Newt paused, glancing at Percival’s expression and then at the men glaring. His expression seemed to grow stormy as he looked back at Percival.

“Percival?” He called lowly.

“Ignore it, I'm fine.”

“No you aren't.”

“I've gotten used to it.” Percival replied under his breath as the muttering grew louder. Newt’s expression seemed to darken.

“...should have been locked away.”

“Throw the key away.”

“...should just go and die-”

There was a low growling sound, followed by a sharp clicking sound and Percival glanced down to see the locks of Newt’s case were open. Newt had stiffened, his right hand seeming to cup something hidden in his sleeve as he began to bend to close his case, pausing for a moment, and for a short second, Percival felt tension grow in his shoulders as Newt glanced over the men.
He couldn’t seriously be contemplating…There was an ever so slight flick of Newt’s hand, and something scurried back towards them, though Percival couldn’t see what it was. Newt closed his case.

“Let’s go.” Newt replied, standing, a gentle smile on his face, though it didn’t reach his eyes.

“Newt-”

“You aren’t going to be comfortable here. Come on.” Newt said softly, glaring coldly at the men. “And to be truthful, I can’t blame you.”

Percival didn’t remember standing, nor of Newt almost guiding him out. He only returned back to the conversation as Newt continued to walk hurriedly in front of him, dragging him.

“What was that all about?” Newt asked as he continued to drag Percival down and around the corner. Percival sighed. Honestly, he had wished that Newt did not have to witness that...or anything like that. He had grown used to it, but...

“...There are some who think I was in league with Grindelwald. That I let him use my position and face.”

Newt paused, looking at him surprise.

“Your arm and leg-”

“Extreme ingredients for polyjuice, and a method to make it look like I was a victim and not a participant. To also show my devotion for the cause.” Newt’s eyes flashed dangerously, narrowing and he seemed to be considering something.

“Come on.”

“Newt?”

He offered a smile and slowly Percival nodded, almost reluctant.

“Where are we going, exactly?” Percival asked a bit in confusion, watching as Newt lifted his case for a moment.

“To finish the date.”

“To finish...Newt, you don’t have to-! That wasn’t-”

“I believe Elaine said to not come and pick the two kids up until it was late. The sun is still up. Now, I don’t know about you, but I’d rather not face her wrath.” Newt chuckled, his eyes glittering with mirth. He turned into an alleyway and a quick check, saw no one. He then extended his hand to Percival. “Trust me?”

Percival was silent, and then took Newt’s hand.

Newt smiled.


He should not have been surprised, honestly he shouldn’t be, Percival mused as he glanced around the inside of the case, listening to Newt muttered behind him. Honestly, it probably was better this way, though he knew he would hear about it from his siblings.

“You shouldn’t have started to release your creatures.” Percival remarked, glancing at Newt as he handed the older man a bowl of stew. “If any of them had actually done anything worse-”

“I didn’t release any of the creatures. Or start to.” Newt replied. “They did that all themselves.”

“Newt-”

“They already consider you a part of the pack. And those men were being much too loud. Likely Jonathan sensed your emotions, as did the swooping evil.” Newt continued as though Percival hadn’t even spoken. “And the swooping evil only tried to get out of my sleeve. Didn’t get to them, did he?” Percival was quiet, then blinked.

“Wait, what are you talking about with Jonathan?”

Newt flicked his hand lightly to the niffler’s nest and he saw that the creature was pulling out new trinkets from his pouch.

“He ah...is rather tricky to keep penned in. I’m just lucky he went after that particular group and came right back.”

Percival let out a low stream of curses as Newt hummed lightly.

“That creature is a menace.”

“Yes, but he’s too used to humans to be taken into the wild. In any continent.” Newt added as a an afterthought.

Percival looked at him with an exasperated expression, jumping slightly when something bumped into his leg. Looking over he saw a mooncalf looking at him quizzically. He glanced at Newt.

“Well she’s certainly little more adventurous than the other mooncalves.” Newt mentioned, pouting slightly before smiling. “And she seems to like you.”

“...Really?”

“Mhm. See? She’s exposing herself, especially the underside of her neck. Normally mooncalves hide, and even if they appear, they don’t usually show their underside. Instinct.” Newt explained with a chuckle. “She really, likes you.”

Percival smiled lightly, listening to Newt explain the mooncalf excitedly. And, as far as date went, Percival thought as he took a bite of the stew, this was probably one of the best ones he had ever been on.

The two continued eating as Percival glanced around, taking in the sounds. It was...relaxing. Not as formal as other dates he had been on...and considering he couldn’t remember a date that resulted in him helping feed illegal, and highly dangerous creatures...definitely one for the books.

“You know, I would have never considered this to be an end result for a date.” Percival remarked lightly as Newt handed him a pail of feed. Newt blinked several times, blushing.

“I’m sorry, I-”

“It’s not a bad thing, Newt.” Percival interrupted with a chuckle, before sitting down in front of the bamboo. Newt sat down nervously next to him, fiddling his fingers lightly. Percival then gestured to the rest of suitcase.

“Tristan and Sebille have informed me that none of the kids have stopped talking about this place.” Percival remarked and Newt glanced at him. “Which considering how quick they are to get excited over something new says something.”

“Oh...I assume that it was rather exciting to see the creatures and see-”

“You. They like you, Newt.”

Newt blinked and then chuckled weakly.

“I’m just me, though.”

"Yes...and I think that you're something else Newt Scamander...."

And Percival watched as Newt's face turned red, and he let out a soft embarrassed chuckle, looking away, and he couldn't help but decide that sunsets really did suit Newt.


Theseus glanced over at Tina as took a sip of coffee, reading the file on her desk, her leg shaking slightly as she read. It was clear she was bored. Actually...not bored, perhaps anxious. Those involved in her case would be.

Frowning he glanced at his own case file. He was missing a piece of it...the couple that had come along with Dorin and Catin. They probably would have the answer, if he could just figure out-

“So Scamander, should we be getting ready for wedding bells?”

Theseus jumped as he looked up at a hand clapping on his shoulder. Looking up he saw an American bloke by the name of Mordred Roshan standing there, grinning. He heard Tina choke behind him.

“I beg your pardon??”

“Wedding bells. For Newt.”

Theseus perked up, his eyes narrowing.

“Hm?”

“A-ah, Roshan, I don’t think-”

“I mean, you know right? About Director Graves and Newt?” Roshan remarked with a chuckle, ignoring Tina’s frantic waving for him to stop. “Tina caught them kissing in the Director’s office, and my brother was pretty sure they were on a date a few days ago at a diner. But you probably already knew that.” Roshan said, but the shit-eating grin slowly slid away at the expression on Theseus’s face.

“My brother went out on a date with Percival Graves? My brother…” Theseus trailed off and then his eyes darkened, and he stood up abruptly and then stormed past the others, everyone who walked by him parting as though he had become Moses.

“Um...did he not know?” Roshan asked and Tina through her pen at him.

“What do you think?! Horsefeathers, how are you an auror?!”

“Hey!!”

Tina didn’t let him finish as she hurried down the hall in the opposite direction.

She may not be able to stop Theseus Scamander.

But she knew someone who did.


“PERCIVAL GRAVES, YOU SON OF A BITCH!!”

The office door slammed open and a very angry Theseus Scamander stormed in just as Percival was about to take a bite of his sandwich. He glanced at his younger brother as Tristan wisely seemed to hide away in the corner of his office, clearly staying out of the way of Theseus.

“Traitor…”

“What the hell, mate?!”

“What?”

“Don’t you ‘what’ me!” Theseus snapped, slamming his hands on Percival’s desk. “I ASKED you if you had feelings for my brother!! I asked you-”

“I recall replying that even if I did, what were you going to do about it?” Percival responded evenly, but that seemed to do little if not anger Theseus even more.

“SO YOU GO OUT AND START COURTING HIM?! BEHIND MY BACK!!”

“I did no such-”

“Oh I have half the mind to challenge you to a duel for his bloody hand!!” Theseus snapped.

“...that’s a bit old fashioned isn’t it?” Percival remarked. “I thought you hated anything old fashioned-”

“Don’t try to act cute!!” Theseus yelled. Tristan sat in the corner now, eating his sandwich as Percival remained seated, though his hand had traveled to where his wand was perched on the desk. “I don’t care, what your intentions are! Bugger off from my brother!!”

“He’s a grown adult, Theseus-”

“I don’t care!! You didn’t even have the decency to ask, you BLOODY PRICK! He’s my brother!!”

“He can make his own choices. I didn’t trick or force him, Theseus. Perhaps you should give him more credit.”

“You-”

“Theseus!!”

The said auror’s head suddenly canted to the side as Newt grabbed his older brother by the earlobe, glaring darkly at him.

“What the bloody hell are you doing?!” Newt snapped, and though Theseus didn’t offer a response, a quick glare in Percival’s direction was enough of an answer for Newt, who exhaled loudly and then looked at Percival apologetically.

“Excuse us. Sorry for the interruption.” Newt said, turning and walked out, still holding Theseus by the ear, earning yelps along the way. There was silence for a moment.

“Well on that...lovely...note, Your meeting with Madame President is going to be soon.” Tristan remarked

“Thanks for the reminder. It’s always nice to know that I can count on you, Tris.” Percival grumbled as his door closed with a resounding bang.

“Hey, you’re the mature one. And I know to pick my battles.” Tristan replied, taking another bite of his sandwich. “You remember what happened when Livia’s brothers found out I was dating her.”

“...Alright, point taken.” Percival amended before glancing at his file. “Glad to know my misery was entertainment for you though.”

“Hey, I needed a good laugh.” Tristan replied with another shrug, “I got to say though, you looked like you were about to pee your pants, it was-”

And Percival couldn’t keep the smile down when a casual flick of his index finger sent a book directly into Tristan’s head, the younger Graves yelping and then glaring at his brother who exited his office with his files.

“...Oh sure. Who's the mature one now?”


“I can’t believe you.”

“Believe me?!” Theseus snapped. “Newt, he’s the Director of Magical Security! Have you gone bonkers?! May I remind you of your case?!”

“He’s already been down there multiple times. Seeing as I’m not in handcuffs, I’d like to think that he’s ignoring it. But honestly Theseus, who I date is not really your problem!”

“Oh my ar-” Theseus paused as Newt glared at him, pointedly looking at Credence and Rosie, who were sitting at Tina’s desk. “You can bet your sorry self that it is my problem, Newt!”

“Um…”

“I’m an adult Theseus, I can make my own decisions!!”

“Don’t you start with me on that! Your decisions usually wind up with you bleeding or hurt!”

“Boys-”

“Oh is that right?! Like your decisions don’t usually get you nearly killed! Or do I need to remind you of Spain!”

“He’s older than you Newt!!!”

“So!? I’m not underage last time I checked!”

“He should have asked for permission to-”

“I’m an adult, Theseus! I don’t need your approval!”

“Newt, so help me-”

“BOYS!”

They jumped, looking at an amused Tina.

“If this is how it normally works, I’m glad Queenie and I aren’t like that.”

Newt frowned, crossing his arms to glare at his brother. Theseus seemed unconcerned, giving a look of we’ll talk later. Newt looked away, and back at Tina’s desk, blinking at the images of the piers.

“Why are you looking at Pier 13 again?” Newt asked, shifting the page. “Didn’t it...blow up?”

“Only that section...and even if it did completely burn away, it wouldn’t matter. It’s not the first time we’ve heard things about Pier 13. Or had to deal with shenannigans.” Tina explained as she took a bite out of her lunch, rifling through papers. “Smugglers always try to use it for their operations.”

“They never changed it?”

“There are good wards there because it used to be a place for the wizarding world to shop at. After a near discovery, we shut it down. But the extension wards are probably still there and smugglers just add other wards to it.”

“I see.” Theseus remarked, glancing over at his brother as he sneezed. “You alright?”

“I just sneezed ‘Seus. I’m not dying.”

“You say that, but if you gave Rosie a cold, you’d never forgive yourself.”

“I’m fine.”

Theseus rolled his eyes and Tina snorted.

“You know, you could always put Credence and Rosie in the daycare up on 200th floor.” Tina pointed out. Newt blinked in confusion. “...you didn’t know that?”

“No, I was unaware.”

“Does the British Ministry not have a daycare?”

“Well...I wouldn’t really know, I don’t really...I mean I’m not really wel-”

There was a clamor on the other side and Tina looked up.

“That might be the Director.” Tina said, hurriedly standing up and walking over to the group, but slowed as she looked at some of her colleagues.

“Erasmus?”

“It’s Dawson.”

“What’s Dawson doing here?” Tina hissed out. “He got demoted to Wand Registration.”

“Not a clue, but he’s just been standing around for the past twenty minutes.”

“Maybe he’s waiting for the Director to see if he can get his job back?” Marie suggested, frowning. Just then Elaine walked around the corner, looking at her wrist watch. Dawson’s gaze shifted and focused on her.

“...He isn’t.” Marie whispered. But it seemed that he was planning on just that as he stopped Elaine and began to chat with her, throwing that charming smile as she stood there politely with, likely what was supposed to be something for Percival, Newt realized, in her hand.

“He is not flirting with the Director’s baby sister. Doesn’t he remember what the Director did to the last auror who tried that?”

“What’d he do?”

“Sent him to the Alaska Division.” Marie replied to Newt. “...He was never heard from again.”

Newt blinked in surprise.

“Okay enough. Winston was already being sent there before that. And we got a message from him last week.” Tina snapped. “But still, all the aurors know to not mess with her!”

“Well technically Dawson was fired.” Erasmus muttered.

“Five dragots that the Director is going to kill him.” Sylvester replied with a grin.

“Oh you’re on.”

“He’s not that stupid. He might just be talking to-” Tina began, but Dawson gently took Elaine’s hand and kissed the back of it, and the girl blushed brightly, looking a bit annoyed as she tried to tug her hand out of his grip. “Okay, scratch that. The Director is going to kill him and feed his body to the fishes.”

“Is Percival that protective of her?”

“Are you kidding??” Tina asked with a dark snort. “He is incredibly protective of her. Don’t know why, I mean I’m protective of Queenie, but not to the degree Percival is. He never said why, and none of us have the guts to ask him.”

“Oh ho ho...look who just got back from his meeting.” Erasmus snorted and the group all looked over to see Percival walking down the hall and paused, staring at the scene that lay ahead of him. The Scamander brothers proceeded to watch a dark glare grow on the American auror’s face and he picked up his pace, storming over to the other pair. Elaine looked over her shoulder and gave a look to Percival. The ex-auror at least had the mind to look sheepish, releasing Elaine’s wrist as they watched the Director mutter something to him, while Elaine rubbed her wrist.

“Oh and he's allowed to do that? But I do it, it's suddenly a bad thing.” Theseus asked, looking at Newt who rolled his eyes as Tina grabbed Theseus by the arm, and dragged him towards Percival, Elaine who was looking at Percival in annoyance.

“-know, I can handle myself.”

“I know you can, but I know Dawson and his personality, as well as his habits with women.” Percival was hissing at her as he glared at the ex-Auror.

“It’s a free country, Sir. I’m allowed to talk to whoever I want.”

“You-”

“Sir, if I can interrupt.” Tina said, glaring at Dawson who narrowed his eyes towards her. It was quiet for a few moments as Percival glared at the other man, before looking at his sister. Dawson’s expression darkened, clearly realizing he was being dismissed.

“Head to my office, Elli. I’ll meet you there in a few minutes.”

“I’ll go with you, Elaine.” Newt said gently and the youngest Graves looked slightly mollified, but only slightly. The two began to turn.

“Director!!”

They all looked up, as O’Reilly rushed over to them, breathless.

“Director, the Carboné family! The Carboné family just contacted us...They can’t find the youngest daughter.”

The entire room went quiet, and Newt turned back to look at Percival.

“They’ve checked any place where she could have been? Any friends, other relatives?”

“Yes, but you know the family, Mister Graves, they wouldn’t come to the Security Department for anything.” O’Reilly responded, swallowing roughly. “They’ve looked everywhere.”

There was silence, as though the aurors didn’t want to believe it to be true. That they didn’t want to hear it.

But they couldn’t deny it.

“He’s back Director. He’s back.”

Chapter Text

“This is bad, Percival. I hope you realize that.”

“Seraphina-”

“The Congress, the newspapers...they’re all going to be after our heads, Percival!” The president said, pacing his office as he watched her. “The city will be in a panic.”

“I know.”

“Were there any clues, any witnesses?”

“No witnesses and no clues. It’s like the others, Phee. The mother looked out one minute and she was having a tea party and turned away, she looked back a few minutes later and the front gate was open and Delilah Carboné was gone.”

“Merlin’s saggy left tit.” She hissed out, rubbing her temple hard. “The Carboné family are one of the largest magical Mafia families in New York, Percival! Do they have a death wish?”

“Or they don’t think they can be caught.”

“This is turning to be a nightmare.” Seraphina replied with a tired huff, slumping into a chair.

“I know, Phee.” Percival remarked, “I know it looks bad, but-”

“The Congress is asking for results, Percival. And they’re beginning to question your ability to lead the Department.”

It wasn’t surprising. Unfortunately it wasn’t surprising in the slightest.

“I’ve known that for a year, Phee,” Percival replied, “it’s not a surprise.We’re putting our best efforts into this investigation.”

“Efforts aren’t enough, Percival. And you know that.” Picquery turned back towards him, dark eyes narrowed. “They’re beginning to discuss the idea of you stepping down.”
Percival frowned.

“I’m not surprised to be honest. They probably should have done it sooner.”

Seraphina looked at him with a dark expression.

“Don’t give me that again. I told you, I am not replacing you.”

“If the Congress demands you do, you’ll have to, Seraphina. And you know that.” Percival replied easily.

“Then you’ll just have to make sure that they don’t.” Seraphina retorted evenly. Percival swallowed, unable to voice that at the rate this was going…

They might end up getting their way.


Percival hadn’t made it home yet, Newt mused as he handed Credence another piece of paper, the young boy eagerly beginning to draw again. Settling down, he glanced at the book that was sitting innocently on the end table.

“My mother wanted to share this with you. On the account that Percival isn’t going to even talk about it.”

Newt hesitated for a moment. If Percival didn’t want him to see it, wouldn’t have been rude to look. Then again...his mother had made Elaine give it to him, so it would be rude if he didn’t.

Sighing, already knowing the answer, he went over and picked up the book. Opening it, he blinked in surprise.

They were...photos.

Now he knew that when that muggle invention had come around, the wizarding society had jumped to develop it, using the magic that brought life to paintings into photos.

And it seemed that the Graves family had gotten one as soon as they could.

Newt stared at the images of the young Percival, clothed in small baby clothes, posed next to his sister, asleep and he couldn’t help but smile. It was clear that Percival’s parents doted on all of their children, clearly proud of their accomplishments. This was proven even more when he flicked down several pages and in it were several articles from The New York Ghost and The Chicago Echo talking about Percival or some of the first few articles that Sebille had made.

He honestly couldn’t remember if his family did such a thing for him...not that he had ever been in the news...at least anything to be proud of...though knowing his mother it was possible that she would have cut out the newspaper clippings about his last visit to America, if only for a good chuckle.

...now his father on the other hand…

“Please tell me that isn’t what I think it is.”

Newt jumped and turned around, staring at Percival who was looking at the book nestled safely in his hands. Newt smiled brightly.

“Oh you’re home! Elaine came to visit for a short while, and dropped this off. She said-”

“Give it.”

“Pardon?”

“I know what it is, and you are not looking at that.” Percival replied, snatching the book. Newt was up in a moment, smiling almost teasingly.

“Now you’re being difficult.”

“No.”

“Why not? Your sister gave them to me to look. From your mother.” Newt remarked, stretching as Percival kept the photo album as far from the magizoologist.

“My sister solely gave you that for blackmail.” Percival huffed, the two adults ignoring the two children watching them as they argued over the album.

“Blackmail? They’re photos. Why are you so resistant on letting me see it?”

“Because it’s em-”

Newt bent forward and gave a quick peck to Percival’s mouth, distracting the auror long enough for the magizoologist to snatch the book away, practically beaming.

“Hey!”

“Would you relax? I won’t tease you.” Newt said, opening the book again as Percival tried to get the book away. He only paused when there was a loud giggle, and turned to see Rosie staring at him with a gummy smile as Credence helped standing. Percival sighed, walking over to her, conceding defeat.

“Why did Elaine give you that?”

“Your Mum apparently wanted me to see you when you were a child. Relax,” he added, glancing over at Percival, “as agreed, whenever I visit England again, I’ll have to bring back baby portraits of me for her to fawn over.”

“You have no idea the promise you’ve made, Newt. I’m just warning you on that.” Percival replied with a chuckle, ignoring the fluttering in his chest and Newt smiled, flipping a page, smiling as he looked at a particular photo of where Percival looked to be eleven, posing in his school uniform.

“You seem to be very proud of starting school.”

“I was.”

“I apologize...I probably sound like your Mum.” Newt remarked lightly.

“No, my Ma would have begun crying at this point. Her oldest son was finally old enough to go to Ilvermorny.” Percival huffed and Newt chuckled, looking at the baby pictures. Very few had Percival with a large smile, though it didn't look like he was unhappy, just wanting to be seen as serious. Newt glanced at Percival with a grin.

“I see you developed the serious look early on in life too.” Newt teased as he flipped to an image of a five year old Percival seeming to try and get away from an infant Tristan, only to be held steadfast by a seven year old Sebille. Percival rolled his eyes, picking up Rosie, ruffling Credence’s hair lightly and settled in the couch as Rosie began to pull at his face.

Now, you sound like my mother.” Percival emphasized and Newt chuckled, flipping the page to the photo album and froze staring at the photo of the younger Percival and Sebille almost in shock.

“Sebille was an auror?”

“For a short while, yes.” Percival replied as he helped Rosie stand on his knees, smiling lightly at how she clung to his fingers. “It’s what makes her an excellent journalist. She knows how to investigate. And it’s why I trust her when it comes to some of my cases.”

“What made her change her career?”

Percival was quiet for a moment.

“There was a series of murders sweeping the city. By magical means. The newspaper dubbed the killer The Full Moon Slayer. Women that went out during the night on the full moon, they weren’t found until a week later, murdered, all in gruesome ways. The auror department was convinced that they had a case of a werewolf on the streets.”

Newt frowned.

“Sebille disagreed?”

“We both did. The scenes were bloody, but the bodies were too clean, too neat. And your chapter on werewolves would have certainly added to that theory had it been published at that point. But we weren’t in the position to throw out the theory yet, it wasn’t either of our case, and the senior aurors got tunnel vision.”

“...what happened?”

“Sebille...and one of her childhood friends were attacked. It was the first time he had gone after two women, much less one that was a junior auror. Sebille was injured during the fight and from the severity of the wound, the attacker thought she was dead, not worth the trouble, and snatched her friend. Sebille being Sebille though, managed to survive that and somehow apparate to my apartment. Imagine my shock when I awoke to someone pounding on the door, blearily got out of bed, and opened the door to see my older sister bleeding out in front of my apartment.”

“...Percival…”

“She managed to tell me what the man looked like as the healers were rushing away, and he was easy enough to find with her detail; Radulf Crispen. And entering his apartment there were mementos of every victim he had taken from them. It was pretty easy to figure out who was the actual culprit at that point.”

“Sebille’s friend...did she…”

Percival shook his head. “She didn’t make it. They found her body by the river a day later. Cora’s named after her.” Newt frowned as Percival sighed. “It pretty much disillusioned Sebille afterwards about her role as an auror or her ability to protect people she cared about. So she took up her second hobby; writing, as a profession. Turns out, she’s rather skilled in that. More than skilled, to be honest. Though her knack of getting into trouble for that scoop is just as prominent.”

“But...you’re relieved.” Newt remarked and Percival glanced at him. “She was gone when Grindelwald was here. It would have worried you to no end if she was in the same building as Grindelwald if she hadn’t been relocated to Chicago at that point. And unlike Tristan or Elaine, it would have taken a bit longer to relocate her, and caused too much questioning in your family if he had.” He added.

“...I am seriously going to have to consider having you teach classes on interrogation and picking up on non-subtle clues.” Percival groused after a moment and Newt chuckled.

“That has nothing to do with subtly, Percy. You’re protective of your family, that is obvious.”

“...he would have killed her. Or had her killed.”

Newt glanced up at Percival.

“It’s like you said. Relocating my sister or even demoting her would have caused far too many questions in the family. Too much suspicion. In all likelihood, he would have given her a mission that was a trap, or would have just jumped her when she was alone. And she would have been just a casualty.”

“Percival-”

“I would have never been able to look my family...look Calvin and their children, in the face without feeling guilt.”

“They wouldn’t have blamed you.”

“You can’t know that.”

“I can’t see them having the heart to hate you. You were attacked and badly injured by Grindelwald before being imprisoned. They know you, and that you would have crawled through hell and back to protect them. That you tried to do just that. I doubt any of them would have blamed you. It wasn’t you.”

Percival swallowed as Newt’s breath warmed his face, the younger man gentle and calm. Comforted in a way that he almost forgot the infant nestled in his lap, clutching at his shirt. Newt cleared his throat.

“I’d like to kiss you again now.” Newt murmured softly and Percival chuckled.

“You can, if you want.” He replied and Newt tenderly, almost hesitant, kissed the older man, only moving a bit closer as Percival relaxed, angling his head for more access, pressing closer.

“Percy…” Newt mumbled and a sharp jolt coursed through the Percival. He moved closer for a split second, before he moved away quickly, blinking rapidly.

“W...what?”

“Percy...sorry, got carried-”

Percival pulled Newt back to him, stopping his apology for a short kiss.

“It’s fine.”

“It...really? I don’t think any of your family have called you that.”

“They do occasionally...I don’t really enjoy nicknames, but I think I’d like it from you.” Percival explained with a soft smile and Newt blushed.

“So...is Perry-”

“Except that. Anything but that.” Percival amended and Newt laughed, cheeks dusting with red and he nodded.

“Percy it is then.”

Percival smiled.

“Percy it is.”


“I think it’s a load of bull.”

“Theseus-”

“No. Don’t ‘Theseus’ me. It is a load of bull that you’re being forced to try and hurry up this investigation because they’re suspicious of you, when they have no reason to be.”

“Children are vanishing, Theseus.”

“I know that, but the fact remains that you and your department are working your arses off on this case. It’s clear this person has done it before.”

“Or has people working on the inside.” Percival muttered, ever grateful that Theseus either was abiding by Newt’s wishes and not trying to kill him, or he was more concerned about the case.

“That could make sense. Maybe Congress has some Grindelwald sympathizers.”

“It’s possible...but hard to prove. And not my case at the moment.” Percival replied, pausing for a moment to wait for the clearing of the street.

“I know that, but it could explain why people aren’t having any luck finding witnesses.”

“Seus, I know politics are bit more...black and white in England, and positions there are pretty much inherited, therefore there’s a great deal of power and fear behind it, but here officials are elected.”

“Oh not this argument again.”

“I’m just saying-”

“Fine, change of argument, were you going to tell me about you dating my brother?” Theseus asked and Percival groaned.

“You know what, forget I disagreed. Keep talking to me about the possibility of a Congressman being corrupt and not about...Newt?” Theseus paused at the sudden change of tone, and turned before feeling his heart skip as he spotted his younger brother heading towards a familiar looking bakery and cursed the fact that he had even offered to take him to a restaurant down the area.

Proudly, without an inch of confusion of where he was going.

“Uh nope, that’s not my brother.” Theseus remarked quickly, trying to guide Percival away.

“You and your brother are horrible liars.” Percival grumbled, wrenching his arm out of Theseus’s grip and walking after Newt, curious as to where he was growing.

“Percival, Percival wait! It’s not my brother! I bet loads of blokes here look like that!”

“Loads wear a slightly torn, slightly faded in spots peacock blue jacket?”

“Well you never know, I-”

Theseus looked up and felt panic as Percival paused, staring at the familiar sign of ‘Kowalski’s Bakery’. Theseus could literally see the gears in Percival’s mind moving as he went through files, and suddenly his eyes widened.

Fuck.

“Percival, Percival, before you do anything you’re going to regret-”

Percival didn’t answer, instead swung the door open and Theseus felt a headache going on when he realized that Newt hadn’t been just going to the bakery to visit Jacob.

He was meeting others as well.

“Uh...Surprise?” Theseus muttered weakly as Percival stared at Jacob, then Queenie, the back to Jacob before looking at Tina and Newt, the four looking absolutely panicked. And for once, Theseus had no idea what to say, simply flicking his wand up, and a wave of his hand, the bakery front door locked, the open sign flipping, and the window curtain dropped.

“...We...need to talk.” Theseus said. Percival glanced at him, then at Newt.

“Yes. I think we do.”

Chapter Text

Newt had only been going there to pick up Credence and Rosie, stopping for a little bit to purchase some pastries that Jacob had insisted Queenie had made with the two children’s help, taking a bite of one, while Tina did to another, exclaiming it was very delicious, much to Credence’s delight when the door opened. And Percival Graves walked in, freezing at the entrance as Theseus hurried in after, and cursed under his breath.

For the first time in awhile, Newt didn’t bother lecturing his brother about cursing in front of children. He didn’t know if he could his voice to work.

“P-Percival?! W-What, a-ah, are you doing here?” Newt finally gasped and the auror’s eyes narrowed as Tina seemed to shrink a bit, and Queenie almost dove in front of Jacob.

“I can ask you the same thing.” Percival replied evenly, regaining his composure as he stared at Jacob Kowalski. “I believe I need answers. Now.”

“Short or long version?” Theseus asked and Percival glared at him.

“...this is the no-maj from a year ago.” Percival prompted, looking at Tina, who seemed to shrink under her boss's gaze.

“Y-yes Sir.”

“The reports said that his memory was obliviated with the other no-majs by the swooping evil venom.”

“They were, but-”

“Clearly they weren’t as he seems to recognize all three of you, and is involved with your sister, Tina.” Percival interrupted, looking at Tina, “did you forge the files?”

“No! No Sir! The original files weren’t touched by anyone but Picquery and some of her Congress Investigatory team during the investigation of Grindelwald’s infiltration of the Department. Anything created was immediately sent to them. Jacob did lose his memory from the venom. And once I found out that they had returned, I thought about removing the memories again...but there are dangers of repeatedly erasing memories. A mind can only go so much and well-”

“If you did it again, he remembers you all now again.” Percival repeated.

“She thought about it. That should count. And it could be a number of factors, Percival.” Theseus explained, coming to her defense. “None that involve the three of them. The other muggles that witnessed the obscurus weren’t as...plunged into magic as Mr. Kowalski was, the venom could have diluted enough by the time that Mr. Kowalski stepped into the downpour-”

“...I believe it’s something else.” Newt quietly interrupted, glancing at Queenie and Jacob. Percival looked at him.

“Something else?”

“...Love.”

That apparently threw the Director of Security for a loop, as the stoic expression vanished for a moment. Theseus however appeared to know where this was leading and had to not roll his eyes.

“No one did anything to Jacob, Percy...those memories were returning slowly before Queenie, Tina, or I even came back here. He was remembering events, and when Queenie...came to get some pastries, it apparently jumpstarted in recognizing her, and what happened in December.”

“And love was a factor in that?”

“A professor of mine from Hogwarts always claimed that love was one of the most powerful examples of magic in the world,” Newt explained ignoring Theseus’s now apparent eye roll, “there have been cases, though quite rare, that love has magical properties that may actually override or deflect a spell. It’s not a usual case, and it’s doubtful that it would do much against a Forbidden Curse such as the Killing Curse, but the venom isn’t a Forbidden Curse, and even I don’t know the full counter effects of the act of love and it’s reaction to the venom.”

“So it’s possible-”

“No.” Newt interrupted. “It doesn’t mean other muggles are in danger of remembering. Like Theseus said, he was a bit more saturated last year than the other muggles. And Queenie...Queenie is a part of the magical world, their memories were much stronger than anticipated, and like I said, when she visited his bakery, he remembered what happened last year.”

“Everything? In an instant?”

“No Sir.” Jacob said, taking over. “I was already remembering things before then, so it wasn’t in an instant...though I did remember more about her after seeing her again. I remembered the creatures and used them as designs for my pastries...but that’s it. I...I guess I couldn’t really ever forget it.”

“And your employees and patrons?”

“Think I just have a really vibrant imagination. Ma thinks it’s good for me...less thinking about the war…” Jacob trailed off, clearing his throat. “I wouldn’t say nothing about this anyway, Sir. Don’t think anyone would really believe me, and it wouldn’t be right.” He added.

“Please Director Graves, you can’t take him away.” Queenie said, continuing to keep herself in between Jacob and Percival, as though that alone would stop the possible end. “You can’t. I love him.”

Percival glanced at Credence who was peeking out from behind Jacob’s pant leg, while Rosie cooed gently from Queenie’s arms. He sighed heavily, pinching the bridge of his nose.

“Mr. Kowalski, where are you from, exactly?”

“P-Poland sir...July 15th, 1900.” Jacob responded, looking at Tina in confusion, though she seemed to be just as perplexed.

“And when did you immigrate here?”

“Just a little after 1912. My family grew nervous about what was happening in Europe.”

“...seeing that those in Polish Magical Democracy has been having troubles in maintaining and finding records of their wizarding population, there’s no way to prove or disprove that he very well may be a Squib from Poland. And asking them would be too much of a cost waste at the moment.”

“I...what?” Jacob ask, looking at Newt who was staring at Percival with a stunned expression before it slowly changed to a bright smile. Percival however did not look at him, stoically looking at Jacob.

“That is a probable explanation that can be given if anyone asks. However, if evidence is given that refutes this, I won’t help you Mr. Kowalski. Tina, next time something like this happens, try not to hide it. You’re a good auror, but not a particularly good liar. Ms. Goldstein, you’ll have to seriously consider different options if you decide to pursue this relationship further. I’ll look away this once, but if he becomes a further risk, I won’t be able to help you.”

Queenie beamed, nodding frantically as Percival levelled his gaze at Newt, before turning and leaving the bakery.

Newt remained quiet, staring at the door.

“I’ll go with him. He’s likely going to have more questions.” Newt said, gathering Rosie and Credence. “Everything is fine though. Just fine.” He repeated in assurance. “Well...I’ll see you later.” Newt said and hurried out the door with Credence and Rosie in tow. There was a long breath of silence.

“...did...did that just happen?” Tina finally managed to ask.

“I...I think it did.” Queenie added, almost collapsing against Jacob. Theseus looked at the door.

Well...damn.


“Percival! Percival, would you slow down!?”

Newt huffed as he pulled Rosalind closer to his chest and Credence scurried after him as he fast-walked after Percival.

“Percy!”

Percival paused at that and turned around.

“What?”

“I know you’re angry-”

“Angry? I can’t even begin to describe what I’m thinking right now!” Percival hissed, glaring at Newt. “You know our laws, that no-maj’s-”

“Then why are you covering for him?” Newt asked weakly.

“Because, I-” Percival trailed off, looking away from Newt.

“Percy...” Newt finally said, unable to stand the silence.

“Is there anything else that I need to know about that you’re hiding from me?” Percival asked harshly and Newt flinched.

“Nothing, I-!”

Percival gave him a look, and whatever protest died in Newt’s chest.

“He isn’t a risk, Percy.”

“And how do you know that?” Percival asked. “If he says anything out of habit, if he lets it slip to the wrong person? How can you be so sure he won’t say anything?”

“How can you be so sure he will? It’s been nearly eight months that he’s remembered, and he hasn’t breathed a word.”

Percival was quiet.

“I’m not going to pretend that the Rappaport Law, when developed, had its reasons, but it’s not the same world as it was back then. It’s becoming a crutch for America, Percival.”

“It’s not for you to decide, Newt!” Percival snapped, glancing back at the bakery. “But I’ve already made the choice. Let’s see if I don’t regret it.”

Newt stood still as Percival turned and stormed away. Credence looked at Newt.

“Mister Scamander...is Mister Graves alright?”

“I...I don’t know Credence.” Newt said, swallowing. “I really don’t know.”


The next few days were awkward. Newt kept his distance from Percival, practically living in his case at the moment. Credence would watch the two of them, Newt basically staying out of any room that Percival was in, Percival seeming to make his office his new home. It was quiet for about two days.

Then Rosie seemed to have had enough of their antics.

Percival sighed as he heard more crying from up the stairs. All day she had been crying, screaming at the top of her little lungs, and barely noticeable under that was Newt’s quiet shushing. He rubbed the bridge of his nose, unable to focus. Finally he had had enough. He stood and walked down the hall, up the stairs, following the crying. He walked into the guest room to see Newt lightly bouncing the inconsolable Rosie who was squirming in his grip, tiny fists waving around, displaying her displeasure. Credence was covering his ears, trying to read, and the case was tightly shut.

“So sorry…” Newt said hurriedly, looking at Percival worriedly. “She...ah...well she’s being incredibly disagreeable at the moment, and the creatures down in the case were getting aggravated, so I couldn’t-”

“Newt, you’re not in trouble.” Percival interrupted gently, standing at the entrance of the door awkwardly. Newt offered a pained smile, but it quickly vanished.

“She hasn’t stopped since she woke up. I don’t know what’s wrong. She’s been fed, changed, she refuses to take a nap…”

Percival frowned as Rosie squirmed around, crying loudly.

“Give her here…” He suggested and Newt gently passed the squirming infant into the other man’s arms.

“Now what has you all upset, Sweetheart?” Percival muttered as Rosie continued to cry. Newt glanced at him. Percival flicked a glance over towards him for a moment, before looking away, the ache gnawing in his stomach before slowly crawling up to his throat. Awkward silence filled the void before Newt cleared his throat, glancing at Rosie again.

“...Maybe she has an upset stomach?”

“Maybe…” Percival replied and then sighed. “...we’re not very good at this, are we?”

“Hm?”

“Reading an infant’s mind. Queenie would probably be better at this.” Percival remarked with a snort.

Newt blinked in surprise at the non-sequitur, the nervousness seeming to abate slightly.

“Probably...though Queenie has said that infants are more just feelings rather than actual thoughts…” Newt trailed off, looking at Percival “...you’re not going to report Queenie, are you?”

“No. I have a little bit more to worry about with the missing children’s case. But I won’t be able to cover for the two of them forever Newt. You have to understand that.” Percival replied evenly. “Queenie has broken the law, even if you think it’s outdated. If it gets out...”

“I know. As do they. They knew that when they restarted their courting...and they’ve been having to think of things of what is going to go on in the future.” Newt explained gently. “They aren’t pretending it isn’t there...but you can’t expect them to move away when they had just started their relationship, just so they could see if it would even work.” Newt continued. Percival was quiet, before exhaling loudly.

“Alright. Like I said, it’d be difficult to find the records in Poland with all that happened in the war. There was so much immigration and emigration, if he does have magical ties, it’s practically impossible to find them right now. So that will give them some time…”

“Thank you.” Newt replied softly and Percival shrugged. “And I’m sorry...I hadn’t meant to spring that on you.”

“Yes...well I probably didn’t react in the kindest of manners. Seb always said I was a stickler for rules, and would throw tantrums if there was the slightest deviation towards one. It seems it hasn’t changed much. I apologize for that.” Percival sighed, shifting slightly only to jump when he felt a slight tug on his shirt. He hadn’t realized it as he looked down at Rosie who stared at him with large innocent eyes, still glassy with the threat of tears, however she wasn’t crying now.

Newt stared and finally chuckled.

“Seems she wasn’t happy with us avoiding each other.”

Percival blinked in surprise as Newt laughed again.

“She’s a baby.”

“Yes well, she’s a very sensitive baby. She’s all fine if everything around her is happy, but if she senses things are turbulent at the very least, or toxic at the most, the waterworks come out. And she adores you, Percy. I doubt she was happy that you weren’t around.”

Percival glanced at the infant and Newt watched and then smiled gently, the knot finally, slowly, loosened in his gut and he could breathe once again.




“Missus Elaine!” Credence yelled out happily, scampering to the smiling young woman. Newt sighed slightly, glancing towards the street.

“-Worried over my brother?”

Newt looked back and blushed at Elaine’s coy smile.

“He can more than handle himself.” Newt offered as they walked into the cafe, and Elaine smiled.

“Doesn't mean you aren't worried.” She replied easily and he huffed.

“A bit. But I’m worried over Tina, Theseus…”

“They’re all aurors, it’s part of the job.”

“Yes, getting into danger-”

“I meant for the family. It’s our job to worry about their safety.” Elaine replied with a chuckle and Newt flushed.

“I suppose.”

“So how are you and Percival?” Elaine asked. Newt flushed, a small smile stretching on his face.

“I...I believe everything is fine.”

“Even with the whole thing with Mr. Kowalski?”

“Well yes, but I-” Newt went quiet, looking at Elaine who smirked, taking a sip of her coffee.

“Percival isn’t as good at hiding everything from me as he likes to think.” She hummed softly. “And the secret is safe with me.”

Newt seemed to relax, huffing slightly.

“I’m glad you know. I don’t think I’ve seen him this relaxed in years. Even more so this year. But then you come along, a man who, by all intents and purposes, would have and should have driven my brother insane, and yet he’s fallen for you so hard.” Elaine said with a chuckle.

“I don’t think I’ve done anything.” Newt muttered, flushing his cheeks growing warmer as she laughed.

“Oh I can assure you, you have.” Elaine said with a gentle smile. Newt flushed slightly, glancing out towards the streets.

And felt his heart jump as a figure walked by.

Long red hair pulled into a chignon pinned back with a silver headband, a deep shade of red dabbed on her lips, making her stand out even more. She wore an expensive fur coat wrapped tightly around her, hiding a cream white dress, and an expensive pair of Mary-Janes. He’d recognize her anywhere.

After all Madame Margaux was hardly one to be missed. Even in the black markets the Red Pearl of France was hardly one to not attract attention.

And with that attention that could only mean trouble.

“Newt?” Elaine asked and Newt glanced at her for one moment, his attention returning to Margaux.

“I need to go somewhere for a quick moment. Can you watch my case, Credence, and Rosalind for a little while?”

“I mean, I can, but is something the matter?” Elaine asked, looking where he was staring, only to see nothing there.

“I don’t have much time...tell my brother I spotted Madame Margaux. He’ll understand that at least, I suppose. And tell him not to worry, I’ll be back by tonight.” Newt said, hurrying to stand, placing some money down and hurrying out of the shop. Elaine blinked several times, looking at the two children and something knotted in her stomach.

“Come on you two...let’s get back.”

“Is Mister Scamander in trouble?” Credence asked.

“I’m...not sure, Credence.” Elaine said, as they hurried out of the shop and into the streets, “But either he’s in trouble...or he’s going to be.”


Newt slid silently around the boxes, the sea smell filling the air as he got closer to the docks. He peered out around a corner, and spotted Margaux talking to another man, one he didn’t recognize, who held up a dress. Possibly an American smuggler?

And why the bloody hell would a dress be so important to Margaux?

His brow furrowed as he moved forward, hiding slightly behind some boxes.
“Look Lady...yer pushing it. The dress is one thing, but the-”

“It’s Madame. Either you do what I say, or we’ll both be out of money.”

“...I guess...but still...what if the aurors get win’ of the package?”

“These buffoons? They didn’t even sense their own head was being impersonated...I doubt they even know us being here.”

Newt frowned, wand clasped tightly in his hand as he moved forward.

“But Lady-”

The sound of skin making contact with something solid was muffled as the man let out a savage yelp.

“As I told you, it is Madame to you...isn’t that right Monsieur Scamander?” A sweet voice called out and Newt swore as he ducked just in time to avoid a shower of wood from a destroyed crate. He scrambled backwards and around a corner, hearing footsteps rushing after him.

“Oh Newt, Newt...you just couldn’t stay out of the way, could you?” A sweet voice sang and he barely ducked again as a green spell splashed against the wood beam, and the wood began to sizzle and melt. He turned to see Margaux standing there, her lips stretched into an easy going smile, wand pointed at him.

“What creature are you trying to sell now, Margaux? Or is it smuggle this time?” He asked and she laughed.

“What makes you think it’s a creature?”

“You never leave France unless there’s something in it for you, I’m afraid. Usually smuggling a creature. Frank, Eleanor…”

“Such horrid names for creatures…” she hummed and flung another spell, Newt blocking it, scrambling back. “I suppose I’ll just have to take them back. Put them to good use.”

“I think that would be rather unwise. And impossible in Frank’s situation.”

Margaux was quiet for a moment, before she began to whip her wand side to side, red ribbons slicing towards him eyes blazing.

“Protego!” He called out and a shield appeared in front of him, though he stumbled with each jarring spell.

“Expulso!”

He stumbled as stone shattered under his feet, but managed to spin around a corner, dodging another spell that sent chunks of wood everywhere.

“Always an annoyance, Scamander. I should have ended you the last time!”

Newt kept quiet, throwing up another shield, stumbling back again. In the distance he heard yelling and inwardly cursed. If Margaux had allies-

But gathering from a flash of surprise dancing across her face, it seemed unlikely. He dodged another spell.

“Expelliarmus!”

“Bombarda Maxima!”

There was a roar next to his head and he evaded the collapse of several more crates.

Honestly the muggles would be so utterly confused when they came for these crates.

“You still haven’t answered me Margaux.” He called out, flicking another spell at the French witch.

“It is not of your concern, Scamander!” She snapped, flinging a bright spell at him, which finally threw him off of his feet and slam into a nearby wall. Stars danced around his head, as he struggled to stand back up. Another spell sent him sliding across the ground, his head cracking against another crate.

Now dark spots fought with white.

“You were always fun to toy with, but you keep getting on my nerves, Newt.” Margaux cooed as Newt struggled to a kneeling position, shaking his head. “And I can’t keep having you get on my nerves.” She continued wand pointed at Newt’s head. “So alas, it’s Au Revoir for us Monsieur Scamander.”

“STUPEFY!”

She turned for a brief moment before a spell slammed into her, sending her flying. Newt looked up in surprise, blinking several times when he saw Percival rushing to them, jacket disheveled as though he had thrown it on mid-run. It must have been the beginnings of the concussion, because he was slow to wonder how Percival even knew he was there. However, when he spotted Theseus he inwardly groaned as he could just sense the second headache growing and wondered how many lectures he was going to hear.


It wasn’t usually a surprise to have Elaine visit him, especially after everything the year prior. If his other siblings were bad, Elaine was the worst. No, it wasn’t a surprise. However, her arriving with Rosie, Credence, and Newt’s case babbling about how she thought Newt was getting himself into trouble, now that, that was a surprise.

When she had mentioned a Madame Margaux however, that sent him into a panic, even moreso when he glanced at Theseus and saw the British auror pale. Because that meant they were thinking of the same woman, and fucking hell he knew that Newt was going to get himself in over his head.

Seconds later, an alert that magical activity had been sensed at the docks sounded.

It seemed time slowed down as he, Theseus, Tina, and a few other aurors raced to the docks, even further when he saw a fragment of blue cloth fluttering in the wind. The sound of another explosion echoed and as they raced towards the sound he saw Newt come sliding just out of reach, careening into a wall of crates, a sickening sound of his head meeting wood echoing in the air.

“...You were always fun to toy with, but you keep getting on my nerves, Newt.” A heavily french accent echoed as a woman with red hair fluttering in the wind cooed as Newt struggled to a kneeling position, shaking his head.

Blood dripped down the side of his face, and Percival felt his heart jump.

“And I can’t keep having you get on my nerves.” She continued her wand pointed at Newt’s head. “So alas, it’s Au Revoir for us Monsieur Scamander.”

His body reacted before his mind had even come up with what to do.

“STUPEFY!”

The woman went flying, his spell strong, even against her shield charm, and Newt seemed surprised, looking up and blinking in a stupor.

“Newt!” He called out, cupping the man’s face for a moment

“Percy?”

It was slurred, and Newt was clearly trying to right his surroundings, but he was alive and breathing...he would take that.

“Bloody hell, Newt!” Theseus snapped as he slid to his brother’s side. “What were you thinking?!”

Newt flinched and Percival glared.

“He might have a concussion, Theseus. Don’t yell-”

“Sir! We got one!”

Percival glanced over his shoulder and frowned when he saw that Madame Margaux had vanished. Dammit. Newt suddenly stood, stumbling a bit to the side, before righting himself.

“Newt! Careful!”

“I’m fine...need to find-”

“What you need to do is sit down.” Theseus argued and the two entered a conversation they likely had had several times before. Percival turned to look at the aurors as Tina walked up to Percival solemnly.

“It’s Howard Manse.”

“...great...just great…one more thing I have to-” He muttered but Tina shook her head and lifted up a thing of fabric.

“He had this next to him.” She said, exposing it as a young girl’s dress. Percival froze at pink smock with a drop waist dresses with large white peter pan collar, tiny flowers stitched into the white fabric. And there at the edge was a deep brown stain from some chocolate from the chocolate cake that she had been eating during the tea-party, that he knew her mother had said she would wash after her play was done for the day.

Percival was quiet, looking at the bound man who was leaning against the wall, looking decidely smaller.

“...Where is she, Howard?”

“The hell are you talking about, Graves?” Howard grumbled under his breath, but was unable to to stop the flinch as Percival’s foot collided with the crate next to his head.

“Delilah Carboné, you rotten son of a bitch!! That child’s dress you were just trying to pawn off to that French witch is hers!”

“I wasn’ pawning it off!”

“Her mother made her the dress!”

“...That fucking bitch! She and her employer set me up! I knew it!” Howard spat out, and Percival’s eyes narrowed.

“And who-” Suddenly Percival was pulled back by the collar of his jacket, turning a bit he saw it was Newt.

“Newt, what the-”

A flash of purple sliced narrowly past his face, hitting the man bound in front him squarely in the chest.

“Spread out!!” Percival yelled and the aurors all dove behind crates, as Percival dragged Newt behind one.

“Stay here!” He hissed out, glaring at Newt. Newt kept quiet and Percival glared, eyes narrowing, “Newt!”

“I’m fine. I can help.”

“I’m not saying you can’t, but don’t.” Percival remarked. “Whoever is out attacking us…I couldn’t bear it if you got hit in the crossfire.”

“I don’t think it was-!” Newt suddenly went quiet, turning around, staring off into the distance.

“Newt? Don’t you-”

Before Percival could voice his order, the magizoologist took off into the stacks of crates, ignoring his brother, Tina, or his own calls to stop.

“Dammit, Newt!!” Theseus yelled out, taking off after him, Tina and Percival in hot pursuit. They raced after him, and nearly barreled into him as he slid to a stop.

“Newt, what the hell-!!”

“Quiet.”

“Oh hell no, Newt!! You could have gotten yourself hurt or worse, ki-!”

“Sshhhhhhh!!” Newt finally hissed and his brother went quiet, as did the others around them. Nothing...then-

Tina’s eyes widened at the soft whimper that echoed through the maze of boxes. Newt quietly made his way towards one direction.

“Well hello there. You must be the one I heard a little while ago.” Newt said softly, staring towards the shadowed boxes. Tina looked at Percival and Theseus, who both shrugged. Then there was a shuffle and the other adults took a step forward.

“Newt-”

Newt waved his hand to silence Tina, a gentle smile on his face as he bent down to where he was practically child level.

“I probably sound rather strange to you, I’m from England, so that’s why my accent isn’t one you’re used to. And your Mummy and Papa probably told you to not talk to strangers, so you’re being very brave and very good for listening to them.” The three aurors glanced at one another, but remained quiet, letting Newt take over. If it was a missing child, they had to be absolutely terrified, and if Newt was managing to not have them run away, they’d take it. Newt gestured up to them.

“But see those three? One’s my older brother, and he’s an auror in England. And the other two? They’re aurors from here. I bet your parents told you about the Security Department and aurors, right? If they worked in the Woolworth Building, you’ve probably seen the Department entrance when you visited? It has that big map in there that lights up. And that one over there, that’s Percival Graves. Your Mummy and Papa probably have told you he’s the boss there, I imagine.”

Ever so slightly there was another shifting sound, followed by a sniffle.

“If you want, I can ask if I can borrow one of their badges so you can see it.” Newt continued, and he barely had begun to move when Tina had fiddled her badge out of her inner pocket and hurriedly handed it to Newt. The British Magizoologist crab-walked a bit closer, flipping the leather cover open and extending his hand out towards the shadows.

“See? Porpentina Goldstein, Auror of the Magical Congress of the United States of America, Security Department. She says you can hold it too, for being so brave.”

There was a pause of silence, then a tiny hand reached out slowly from the shadows and took the badge, another hand joining it’s pair, and then as though casting a lumos incantation, a tiny little girl slid out of the shadows, large innocent brown eyes looking at the MACUSA emblem emblazoned on the badge with interest.

His heart was in his throat as Percival recognized her in an instant. How could he not? Her picture was one of the first ones that had appeared and stayed on his desk for the past few months. Smiling without a care in the world. Little Annabelle Fletcher, five year old daughter of Frank and Kathleen Fletcher, both Unspeakables and the second child from two wizarding parents to have vanished in early October, around the same time as Aaren had. And now she stood there in a dress that was three sizes too big and her hair slightly unkempt, but breathing and standing.

Newt smiled brightly as she finally looked at him.

“Well hello there, my name is Newt Scamand-”



He barely finished before Annabelle had flung herself at him, sobbing loudly. He wrapped his arms around her and picked her up, letting her tighten her hold around his neck and burrow her face into his shoulder as she cried.

“There we go...you’re alright. I’ve got you. I’ve got you.”

“Tina...can you take Newt to St. Agatha’s.” Percival’s voice broke through the silence and Tina nodded, going over to Newt and the girl.

“Of course.”

Percival glanced at Newt who blinked at the relieved look on the older man’s face before following Tina. The last thing he saw was Percival walking towards the other aurors, before the world whirled around him in an array of colors and he held tight to the tiny girl who clung to him like a lifeline.

Chapter Text

It was quiet when Percival finally arrived at the hospital. Or at least in this section of the hospital that the healer in front of him was directing him to where they had sent Newt and Tina with their ward. Since she wasn’t hurrying him along, it appeared that Annabelle wasn’t in danger, a relief.

When he turned around the corner, he paused at the sight that lay before him.

Tina was sitting in a chair near a hospital bed, Newt on the hospital bed with Annabelle curled up to him, one thumb in her mouth as she watched Pickett dance around on Newt’s knee, apparently trying to entertain the girl.

It proved fruitful as the little girl laughed, her free hand slowly sticking out, and the bowtruckle climbed onto it. Newt offered a gentle smile to her and Percival’s heart skipped a slight beat.

“He certainly is wonderful with children. It’s no surprise that Credence is so attached.”

Percival glanced over spotting Elaine standing there.

“Isn’t today your day off?”

“The hospital summoned me so I can examine her.” Elaine gestured to Annabelle. “They always do when there’s a child involved.”

“You always were good with kids.” Percival admitted and Elaine smiled.

“Bullseye. But I wanted to wait till she calmed down a little before trying to talk to her. She’s obviously been through something traumatic.”

“What are her injuries?”

“The other healers found bruises, contusions, scratches...whoever had her certainly didn’t hide the fact that they hit her. There is...trauma...however the worst of the injuries were healed. I don’t really understand it...why hurt her and then heal the wounds?” Elaine muttered, oblivious to Percival suddenly stiffening as though cold water had been thrown on him. It was just like…

“I’ll see if I can find anything else for you to go on.” She said, before walking to the small room and knocking lightly on the door. The three occupants looked up and Newt offered a gentle smile as Elaine summoned a chair and sat in front of the two.

“Hello Annabelle. My name is Elaine Graves. I’ll be the healer that will look over you.” Elaine said. Annabelle responded by clinging tighter to Newt, looking at him fearfully.

“It’s alright. She’s very nice.” Newt said softly, giving a gentle reassuring smile. Annabelle blinked before nodding slightly. Elaine’s smile gentled even further if possible. Gently she glided a hand on the little girl’s cheek, lifting it slightly as she examined the girl’s eyes, muttering spell diagnostics under her breath, letting Newt and Tina chat with the tiny girl as she did her spells.

It was the slightest of twitches that clued Percival in that Elaine had found something odd. Barely noticeable to the naked eye, and some could easily conclude that she had simply shifted. But he knew his sister.

“Thank you so much. You’re very brave, sweetheart.” Elaine said gently and Annabelle curled up to Newt, smiling shyly. She stood and flicked her wand and a piece of candy went flying through the air to her and she handed the girl the treat. She gestured a goodbye to Tina and Newt and shared a glance at Percival, who followed her.

“You got something.”

“A few description factors. Maybe dark-ish hair, light skin...but I can’t make out anything defining. The aura of that man, though is really defining. It felt like I haven’t bathed in years.” She shuddered. “My skin is just crawling. Whoever had her, was definitely prepared in the chance that she was found by us.”

“What do you mean?”

“The memories are there, but it’s all blurry and faded. And not in a suppressed way where a traumatized child would try to forget. I doubt Queenie or anyone with legilimency could see anything and I do not suggest trying to push her too much.”

“Memory charms?”

“Mhm. And these types of charms aren’t something you can break with a swish of a wand, Percival. Do that and you could wind up with major holes in your memory at best, a drooling vegetable at worst. These are serious memory suppression spells and charms. Whoever did this wanted to make sure nothing happened.”

“Charms that Grindelwald would know?”

“I...suppose…”

“But?” Percival said and Elaine sighed, pushing her hair back.

“It’s possible...but I don’t know. I think any of the governments would have found out that he had that capability for these charms by now. He could have taken over other people with far more reach in politics if he could alter or hide memories like that.”

He would have done it you.

The unspoken thought rippled through the siblings and Elaine shrugged after a moment.

“I’m just saying, if he did have those charms, I don’t think he would be using them to hide memories of what he did or didn’t do. He wants the general public to be afraid, to have them go into some sort of action…especially against the no-maj population. Why not just alter them to make it look like a no-maj had snatched them? It would certainly cause panic and have people attacking no-majs or at least be sympathetic to his cause.”

“...you know sometimes I think you would have been better suited as an auror.”

Elaine laughed, smacking her brother lightly in the chest.

“Please, if I joined I wouldn’t be able to go one the field at all with your around.” She said with a laugh.

“Annabelle?!”

Everyone turned at the shriek, the little girl straightening up before sliding off the bed and scrambling to her parents that had burst through the doors. It was a mere second before the family was reunited a tangle of limbs, and sounds of sobbing echoed through the room as the parents rocked their found daughter. The other adults smiled at the small reunion, the parents clinging to their daughter. The woman finally looked up, sniffling as she held her daughter tightly to her.

“T-thank you.” She finally managed. “Thank you so much.”

Percival nodded, remaining quiet, glancing at Newt who continued to look away from him as Pickett. Then he slid away out of the room, clutching his case. Percival barely took a step before Newt vanished around the corner. By the time he managed to get to the corner, the magizoologist had vanished.


“Mister Scamander! Mister Graves! Missus Tina!”

“Hello Credence.” Percival said stretching out the kinks in his shoulders. “Where’s Rosie and Newt?”

“Rosie’s with Missus Queenie and Mister Kowalski. Mister Scamander is in his case!” Credence said.

“Ah, Kowalski is here too.”

“Mhm!”

Percival sighed, but was far too tired to put any complaint on it, the file in his briefcase feeling heavier more so than before. He glanced into Tina’s living room and spotted Newt’s case leaning against the wall in the corner. Credence took note and frowned, looking at Percival nervously.

“Is Mister Scamander in trouble? He didn’t look too happy when he got here.” Credence asked.

“No, but I have a feeling he thinks he is.” Theseus said as Queenie and Jacob came out from a room, Rosie snug in Jacob’s arms. Percival glanced at her as she cooed, a tiny hand grasping at Jacob’s shirt. Jacob offered a kind smile, letting her hold onto his finger instead.

“She’s just been fed, so she’s got a full belly.” Jacob informed Percival, looking at the Director nervously. Percival was silent for a moment.

“Would you mind watching her for a bit longer? I’d like to have a word with Newt.”

Jacob blinked several times before grinning.

“Sure, I think I can handle this little angel a bit longer.” Jacob said and Rosie cooed again, a gummy smile crossing her face and Percival observed Queenie smiling at Jacob, eyes alight with a gentle, loving expression. Percival remained quiet, before heading over to the case, opening it and stepping down into it.

He heard the now familiar sounds of creatures wash over him, and as he finally made it all the way down, spotted Newt staring blankly at his desk. He stepped on a board that creaked and Newt spun around. The sight of dried blood on Newt’s face caused Percival’s insides to feel as though they were twisting again.

“I’m fine,” Newt said quickly as though reading his thoughts. One hand brushed some of his blood crusted hair out of his eyes. “Head wounds, they bleed a lot, I’m fine.”

“Let me be the judge of that.” Percival said, walking over to him capturing Newt’s face to hold it steady as he began to examine the cut on his forehead, silently summoning a rag and small basin over to them. They were silent for a few moments.

“...So Madame Margaux? You know her?”

“We’ve met a few times around the world during my travels.” Newt explained, trying to look away, but was stopped by Percival. “Eleanor...Frank...the occamys. All were creatures I saved from her black market warehouses.”

“So clearly not the best of companions.”

“Not in the slightest, I’m afraid.”

"...how many times have you run into her?”

“Lost count if I’m honest. She’s usually a smuggler of creatures. Not of human children.”

“And do the meet ups usually end with you bleeding?”

Newt flinched as Percival’s hand grazed lightly on the still sore wound.

“...depending on how quiet I am I suppose once or twice.”

“...Why didn’t you tell us? Contact us. Me.”

“I saw her and know her habits. She would have been gone if I had gone to get anyone.”

“You had no problems telling Elaine to hold onto your case and look after Rosie and Credence. You couldn’t have sent out a patronus during that?”

Newt was quiet before sighing.

“...I’m used to handling her on my own, I’m afraid. It didn’t occur to me that she would be involved in your case.”

“That’s not my problem with the whole matter, Newt.” Percival said looking at Newt, thumb brushing back a blood crusted lock of hair. “My problem is that you went there alone, with no help. No backup. Nothing.”

“I’ve done it-”

“Before, yes...but at those times, I can assume you were on your own with no support around.” Percival interrupted. Newt went quiet. “This time you weren’t. This time you had your brother, Tina...me. The other aurors I can assure you like you enough that they would have had your back.” Newt swallowed audibly. “...I can’t know what you went through that made you believe that you are on your own no matter what...I can’t even imagine that concept.” Percival said after a moment, looking at Newt.

“However, you’re not on your own now.”

“I know that.”

“Do you?” Percival asked, looking at Newt, managing to lock eyes with the younger man for a moment, before Newt looked away again.

“...do you know how much you scared me? Hearing from Elaine that you had gone chasing after a woman that my department have heard of? Getting to the docks only to find a witch, a dangerous witch, standing over you, ready to kill you?” Percival asked and Newt glanced at him. “I thought I was going to lose you.”

“You didn’t.”

“I nearly did.”

“But you didn’t…” Newt said almost feverishly. Percival stared at him and Newt looked away. “...I’m sorry…I wasn’t thinking I suppose.”

“Don’t apologize Newt...just promise me that next time, you’ll think before you leap, alright?”

Newt was quiet before nodding. Percival remained quiet, wiping a bit of blood away.

“...That man. Howard Manse. Is he…”

“Dead. Whatever the spell did to him, was fatal.”

“Fatal?”

“Mhm.”

“But...the killing curse is green. The spell that hit him was…” Percival glanced over at Newt as the younger man trailed off. “Sorry, but I...I actually think I know the spell that killed him.”

“You...what?” Percival began but Newt was moving away and already climbing up the ladder. “Newt!”

Theseus looked up from the table and frowned as Newt hurried over to him.

“Remember Norway? The dragon smugglers?” Newt prompted breathlessly.

“Remember? Dammit Newt, yes I remember. I also remember the scolding we got when Mum heard about it.”

“What are you two talking about?”

“1920 in Oslo, or at the time Kristiania, Norway…” Theseus explained, glaring at his brother who shrugged, “Newt over here got wind of some dragon smugglers-”

“They’d snatched some Peruvian Vipertooth’s dragonlings. Their poison is more potent at that age and they tend to milk the dragons until fully grown, then kill them for-”

“Newt.” Theseus interrupted.

“Right. Sorry.”

“Anyway, for once, Newt contacted me before jumping headfirst, and since transporting Vipertooth’s themselves is illegal, not even mentioning the other creatures, it was pretty easy to get myself a portkey and work with the aurors in Norway.”

“But the smugglers had a few tricks up their sleeves?”

“Yeah. It became a little battle in itself and my moronic brother jumped into the fray to rescue the creature. One minute I’m dealing with a smuggler, the next thing I see is a purple light and then Newt’s down for the count.”

“So how does that connect with Howards? Clearly it’s not lethal.”

“Can’t really know for sure that it’s lethal.” Theseus remarked, “But given the fact that it knocked Newt out for two weeks by just grazing him, I’d say that the chances are very high that it’s deadly.”

“Two weeks???”

“And not a mark on him outwardly. I thought he had been struck with a variation of the Killing Curse until I saw his chest moving. The curse doesn’t leave any marks, but it’s not the immediate effects of the spell that are the most lethal. It’s the aftereffects. The healer said if we had been a minute or so later getting Newt treatment, he would have bled to death from internal bleeding. Even with treatment, he had to take potions for weeks after before he was deemed ‘healthy enough to travel’. So while it’s not lethal...Newt and I only dealt with the spell as a graze. I can’t imagine what would happen dead on.”

Percival and Tina stared at Theseus and then Newt, who was frowning at the memory.

“So...if we’re thinking that that spell is what killed Manse, we have to wonder if it was aimed at him, or you Perce.” Theseus finally admitted, frowning. “If it was aimed at you, then you’ve managed to strike a nerve at whoever is running this little operation that your case is beginning to look like. If it was aimed at him…”

“He knew something that someone didn’t want him to tell.” Jacob concluded frowning. “They offed him to keep him quiet.”

“He was pretty peeved about whatever arrangement he had with Margaux.” Tina replied

“Do you think she did it?”

“Margaux is many things, but she’s smart and she wouldn’t kill Manse if there was a chance that she could use him to make it seem she was unaware of what he was supposed to be smuggling out as well.” Newt remarked. “She has no problems throwing suspicion onto the closest pawn that is available, I’ve seen it before.”

“Whatever the case is Percival...be careful. I have a feeling your case is reaching the finish line.” Theseus said and Percival was silent in agreement.

“Now come on. Let’s go and get some food. My treat for finding one of the missing children. I think it’s in due time”


It seemed like time had sped up since the rescue of Annabelle, several weeks passing quickly in Tina’s opinion. She chanced a glance at Theseus, frowning as she felt her cheeks heat up and looked back down at her notes, rubbing her eyes. It was getting pretty late.

“Merlin’s saggy trousers! I got it!”

Tina looked up, snorting as Theseus grinned like a school child.

“Got it?”

“An address for Dorin and Catin’s aliases Johann and Monika. And permission to head over there.” Theseus clarified.

“Really?”

“Mhm. It didn’t make sense that that little room was where they lived while they were staying here. It would have been too noticeable.” Theseus explained as Tina went over to him reading the paper over his shoulder. “And like you said, they had a little baby with them. They wouldn’t want to risk her being there all the time.”

“True.”

“I’m going to go check it out.” Theseus said after a moment of looking at the address. “There might be something to help my case. You can-”

“I’ll go with you.”

Theseus paused, glancing at Tina.

“You don’t have to. It’s getting pretty late, and with the new lead on your case…”

“The healers are taking some time to work with Annabelle and opening the locked away memories. I have time. Besides, I want to see what type of parents Dorin and Catin were.”
Theseus looked at Tina.

“Them being her parents still bothers you, doesn’t it?”

“She’s a baby.” Tina said. “They dragged an innocent baby into this shit because they wanted to please a madman. What mother and father does that to their child? She could have wound up dead because they got involved with the wrong ones. Who in their right minds...”

“We can’t really know what went on in their heads. Grindelwald does have that charisma to attract people. Good or ill.”

Tina shook her head.

“It’s just sick.” She muttered, gathering her coat and followed him out. It was quiet as they arrived to the street that had the address, the night darkening in the early night. Theseus had to admit that it was rather ingenious. They were walking further into muggle apartments. The Wizarding World wouldn’t have noticed them if they hadn’t used magic. It would have been as though they were invisible.

“Oi! Whatcha doin ‘ere?”

They paused and saw a middle aged woman staring at them leaning against the fence.

“Uh, we’re looking for Mr. and Mrs. Kopp’s residence.”

“Why? They in ‘rouble?”

“Oh no, we’re friends of theirs. They said to come visit for dinner.”

“Hmph, well good luck tryin. Those two aven’ been in months. Barely there ‘efore too.” The woman said with a thick accent.

“Oh well darn.” Tina said, pouting as she noted Theseus look at the woman confused. “Well...could we perhaps visit their apartment? Maybe they left us an address.”

“Sure why not. I ain’t the landlord. Find anythin’ good, give it to me.”

“Will do, Ma’am!” Theseus called out, before glancing at Tina as they hurried by. “I understood almost none of that.”

“The accent?”

“Bloody hell, it’s the accent.”

She smiled as they arrived at the door. A knock received nothing. Glancing around, Tina pulled out her wand.

“Alohomora.”

The door unlocked with a soft click.

“Only one spell? They really didn’t think anyone would find them.” Theseus muttered.

“Lucky us.”

Slowly they entered the small flat, staring at the scene before them. It was quiet, simply furnished with a bed, a crib, a table, and in a far corner facing out a window was a desk littered with papers. Theseus wandered around, pausing when he passed the crib and peered in the dimming light of the name painted on the crib.

“Seems Rosalind’s given name is Olimpia.”

Tina’s nose wrinkled at the name.

“Olimpia?”

“Yeah. If I remember correctly, it’s derived from Olympus. Kingdom of the Gods.”

“Rosalind is better. I hope Newt keeps Rosalind.” Tina hotly replied and Theseus grinned.

“No complaints on that. Anyway, from what it seems here, they did care for their daughter. These letters are all unsent messages to people. Maybe there were plans to visit their friends and family whenever this was over.”

“Director Beltz said that they didn’t have family...or at least they weren’t close enough to.” Tina reminded him and Theseus frowned.

“...right.”

“Something the matter?”

“Nothing, just having a strange feeling about Beltz and his relationship with the two of them. That’s all.”

Tina frowned, not wholly convinced as she kept looking around, shifting papers around. A lot were in German, useless to her at the moment but still it could prove useful later on. She
however paused when she spotted a familiar name.

“This has a the children that were missing.” Tina called out and Theseus walked over, looking over her shoulder. “See? Aaren, Annabelle, Bridget, Grant...they’re all here barring Delilah Carboné.”

Theseus frowned, glancing at the list.

“So the two of them are connected to the kidnappings.”

“Seems likely. But I can’t make out if there is any purpose for them.”

Tina shuddered slightly, looking away but still folded and placed into her inner coat pocket. Theseus looked around. If anyone had ever got a glimpse of the inside, they would have thought nothing more of travelers, or immigrants trying to start a new life...no way of knowing that they were out to probably attack and kill as many muggles as possible. He paused when he saw another letter. Walking over he lifted it gingerly, squinting in the light.

“Well look here.” Theseus said, lifting up another note. “Another letter…”

“Can you understand it?”

“Not at all. But it has Grindelwald’s name on it. Unsent. Something about a raise?”

“They were being paid?”

“Not sure. Lighting is too dark now. One second.” Theseus said pulling his wand out.

“Lumos.”

The result was instantaneous and there was an ear-piercing boom, deafening him as the shockwave blasted him off his feet as lights brilliantly exploded in several discharges around the room. He only caught sight of Tina for a moment before something dark, the dresser he realized careened towards him, and he smacked backwards into the wall. He heard a sickening crack of his skull hitting the wall, and a burning sensation in his chest, before he knew nothing else.


“So Newt’s alright?”

“He’s fine, Elaine.” Percival said with a smirk. “It was a small cut and he took the potion you gave me to make sure he didn’t get a concussion.”

“Good. I was worried since he refused to stay at the hospital.”

“He’s stubborn.”

“And you like that.”

“...yes, I do apparently.” Percival muttered and Elaine smiled brightly.

“I’m glad.” She said, watching him as they headed to lunch. She chuckled at the slight flush on his face. “You know...I don’t even have legilimency and I know what you’re thinking, Percival.”
Elaine said softly, glancing at her brother, grinning as Percival’s face turned a deeper shade of red. She chuckled again. “So...is there a reason that you’re not seducing him to that particular room in your house?”

“Elaine.”

“Just curious...”

“As a cat.” Percival groused. “And for many reasons. One being that I don’t want to scare him off. Two, I’m watching over two children. Children. And yes, ONE wouldn’t remember...but I guarantee the other will if he walked in and saw...well that.”

“Well, I volunteer with babysitting if that’s what you’re worried about.”

“Huh?”

“Babysitting, as I watch over Credence and Rosie.” Elaine repeated with a smirk. “So you can spend some time with Newt. Whether or not you spend it doing that particular activity, is something else entirely.”

“...you, Sebille, and Tristan are betting on me, aren’t you?”

“Who? Us? Never!” She said with a laugh and he rolled his eyes.

“Right, like we didn’t do that with Sebille or Tristan.”

“Both which you won, might I add.” She hummed and he snorted, looking up as they stopped at a crosswalk. “I’m happy for you Percival. Truly.” Elaine said softly and Percival chanced a glance at Elaine.

“Something’s worrying you.”

“Not at all.” She replied a little too quickly, “I’m just meaning that you always tended to work yourself into the ground. I’m just glad that Newt is there for you.”

“The healer part of you is showing, Elli.”

“That would be the sister part of me, Perry.” She teased and he grimaced at the nickname. She chuckled, following him.

“How is Annabelle doing?”

“Better...the hospital assigned me as her healer. I’m going to be helping her work through the memories that are slowly being uncovered, and the emotions corresponding with those. I’ll tell you if I find anything.”

“Good.”

There was silence for a few moments, and Percival waited for what Elaine truly wanted to say.

“Alright, I am getting worried…” Elaine finally admitted after a moment and Percival paused. “Theseus and your case seem to be both racing to the conclusion. I’m nervous about who's going to be caught in the middle when they crash together. And you know how it usually winds up when I get these feelings, Percival.”

“We’ll be fine, Elaine.” Percival promised, though she didn’t seem convinced.

“Aurors always say that, Percival. And sometimes they’re right...but other times they aren’t.” She argued, frowning. He opened his mouth, if to at least sway her doubts, when a deafening bang echoed through the streets. Passerbys stopped, looking up into the city skyline, and Percival could see a faint waft of smoke drifting into the air. Elaine frowned.

“I can sense magical residue in that.”

“You can?”

“Yeah. It’s faint, but whatever that explosion was, had magic involved in it.” Elaine confirmed, frowning just as Percival felt his badge warm against his chest.

“You were right...I need to head out, I’ll make up on dinner.” He called out and hurried down the street as Elaine stood there, frowning as her brother vanished into the throng of people.


Theseus coughed violently as he shoved off the dresser that had landed on him, immediately regretting it as his entire left side burned. He cursed loudly curling up to try and alleviate the pain.

“What the…”

“An explosion?!”

“God!”

He looked up towards the entrance, noticing shadows of neighbors, muggle neighbors, peering in. He could just make out their stunned expressions through the smoke and glow of the small fire. Shit, they could set some type of trap off as well or get stuck in here.

“Get out of here. Gas explosion!” He called out, coughing violently as his chest burned. Damn booby trap. If Dorin and Catin had set these up, he was almost glad they had been killed.

“Let us help you!”

That would make things worse, Theseus mused grimly.

“Uh...no! The floor is pretty weak because of the explosions! Go outside!” He exclaimed again, almost weeping at the pain that spasmed through his side. He then looked around.

“Goldstein? Goldstein, can you hear me?”

Silence and as he stumbled up to stand he spotted a limp form crumpled near the bassinet, the flames flickering lights against her face.

“Tina!”

He stumbled over to her, dropping onto his knees next to her, cupping her cheek as he gingerly eased her onto her side, pulling her close.

This was going to hurt. He screwed his eyes shut.

He apparated. Only a short distance and even that felt as though his side was torn off. He stumbled as he landed, looking up in a blurred vision to see they had only made it to the next building over. He pointed his wand up.

“Expecto Patronum.” He managed and a wispy shape of a lion strode out proudly. He swallowed roughly, shifting weakly.

“Find Percival Graves and tell him Goldstein and I are on the apartment building roof next to the burning one. He’ll know what’s going on I assume.”
The lion seemed to nod and ran off. Theseus exhaled shakily, glancing at the woman in his arms, still limp. His heart skipped a beat.

“Tina, Tina, open your eyes for me. Porpentina!!” He snapped in desperation. Finally she shifted, a single hand lifting and cupping his cheek.

“...Seus…?”

“Oh thank Merlin,” Theseus gasped as Tina opened her eyes, staring weakly at him, “you worried me there for a second.”

“American girls...hard-headed you know.” Tina slurred and he chuckled weakly, brushing back a strand of hair, wincing at the blood soaking it.

“Don’t talk. You’re badly injured.”

“Such a wet-blanket.”

“You always wind up bleeding when you’re partnered with me. Percival is going to get in a lather for this.”

“Nah...It’s...my job…protect others...and so forth.” She managed, “‘sides...wanted...to be here...with you.”

“With me? What are you-”

“Wouldn’t have forgiven myself…” she murmured as though she didn’t hear him or even realize he was there still, trailing off for a second before letting out a weak laugh. “Queenie’s always right.”

“What?”

“Queenie...Queenie knew...I’m too stubborn to admit...I think I’m falling for you. So...it wouldn’t do me any good...if you died.” She murmured, her eyes sliding shut as Theseus stared at her stunned as she went limp against him.

“Tina...TINA!” Theseus hissed out, turning slightly, and his vision turned white for a moment as pain radiated in his ribcage. By the time he staved off the threat of blacking out, Percival had rushed over to them.

“What the hell happened?”

“Dorin and Catin’s apartment was rigged with protective charms that only activated with spells. Muggles think it’s gas.”

“You went on your own?!”

“Goldstein came along, and it’s been months since they were last spotted here, Percy.” Theseus wheezed. Percival cursed. “Those damn spells were recent too.”

“You’re injured!”

“No shit. She’s more injured though, take her. I’ll be fine..” Theseus said. Percival, instead grabbed the two of them. “I said-”

“You try apparating again, you’ll wind up splinching yourself.” Percival said angrily. “It’s a miracle you didn’t do that the first time. You’re still helping me get to the hospital though.”

“Lucky me.” Theseus groused out, hissing again as he shifted.

“What’s broken?”

“Ribs. Quite a few of them if I’m guessing right.” Theseus said and Percival frowned, pulling Tina onto his back, holding tightly onto her and Theseus. The two men glanced at one another, and Theseus grimaced, before the two turned and with a popping sound, all three vanished in the smoke.

Chapter Text

It was quiet this time inside the case as they made their rounds. Jacob and Newt went around feeding the other creatures, though Jacob paused for a moment, looking over and spotting Credence with the mooncalves, Rosalind in his protective grip as the mooncalves surrounded the two. Jacob then glanced at Queenie as the younger Goldstein sister as she sat watching him and Newt feed the creatures, eyes blank as she sat on the steps of the small shed.

“Newt, do you need help at the moment?” He heard himself asking and Newt glanced up, before glancing at Queenie. He gave a silent nod, and the baker walked over to his fianceé. She glanced up when he approached but didn’t say anything as he sat down next to her.

“Queenie? Hon?” Jacob said softly and she looked at him, bottom lip trembling. “Hey...it’s okay. You said so yourself, Tina will be just fine. And Theseus said he would send you that Patronus thing the moment she woke up.”

“I know...but...she looked so hurt, Jacob.” Queenie finally said, fiddling with her fingers, trying to abate her worry, but failing. “She looked...tiny in there, and it was just like seeing my parents through that window when they were dying. I had Tina then, but now…”

“Hey, hey...ssshhh…” Jacob soothed, pulling her close. “Tina will be just fine.” He promised. She swallowed and nodded, but leaned into Jacob’s embrace, practically going limp as the anxiety drained out of her, closing her eyes as he comforted her. Newt glanced back, smiling slightly before heading over to check on Credence and Rosalind.

“...sy. Now be nice, she’s sleeping.”

Newt paused as he stepped into the mooncalf enclosure, watching as Credence held Rosie tightly to him, a curious mooncalf sniffing at her foot. Newt couldn’t help the smile growing on his face as Credence laughed. It was comforting, easing the tension that had been in his shoulders since he had received the news of Tina and Theseus.

But they would be alright. They had to be.

He ran a hand through his hair, unable to keep the feeling of being anxious away.

Worrying means you suffer twice, he would always say. Funny how that philosophy seemed to not work when he tried to use it on himself.


Everything was blurry, head ringing. She could hear...Queenie yelling for her.

Strange...Queenie never yelled. Not at her at least.

Unless she was truly angry with her.

But it didn’t sound like anger...far from it.

It sounded almost desperate.

Still...she was much too tired and faded into darkness shortly after. She didn’t know how long she was in that nothingness...didn’t know what was going on. The only thing she could remember now was blinding white as she finally gained enough strength to open her eyes. Wincing, she blinked several times, the spots slowly leaving her vision as her eyes adjusted. She was in a hospital bed, something she was sadly rather used to, but couldn’t remember why she was here this time. She shifted her head, looking around.

A snore filled the air and she whipped her head to the other side, instantly regretting it as her vision swam again. Fighting back the nausea, she squinted her vision and saw, limp in a chair was...Theseus.

She blinked several times, but the eldest Scamander son didn’t vanish. Then she remembered. The small apartment, the boobytrap. Theseus holding her close and her...her…

“...I’m too stubborn to admit...I think I’m falling for you. So...it wouldn’t do me any good...if you died.”

Her eyes widened in panic and she sat up in horror, before yelping at the pain that blossomed from her hip all the way up to her right shoulder. Theseus jolted awake, cursing as he gingerly held his side.

“Bloody hell, couldn’t the damn healing potion have made the bruises go...away…” He trailed off when he spotted the now almost panicked Tina sitting upright in her bed, staring at him like a deer caught in lights.

“You’re awake?” He said softly and mutely she nodded.

“I...ah-”

“Oh thank Merlin.”

Tina blinked in surprise as Theseus pulled her close, tightly, as though frightened she would vanish in a moment.

“Theseus?”

“I’m so sorry...I should have been more careful. If I had-” Theseus trailed off for a moment, shaking his head. “You’re hurt...I’m sorry.”

“This wasn’t your fault.”

“This was my case...and you got involved in it.” Theseus replied heatedly. Tina bit her lip.

“It comes with the job. Trying to find answers...sometimes people get hurt. I’m glad it was me rather than some poor soul who happened to stumble in there.”

The look Theseus gave her was almost haunted and he sighed, laughing weakly.

“...yes, you said something as much before you lost consciousness…” he said after a moment. Her face turned red.

“What...what do you recall me saying?” Tina asked, after another moment and Theseus was silent for a moment, clearly trying to figure out how to say it properly.

“You said...some things...involving me.” He finally managed and she cursed, slumping back onto the cot. “Er...sorry?”

“No. It’s my fault.” She muttered, her face red, covering it to avoid his gaze. “I was being a naïve little girl, young and stupid. I just say things and I-”

“I don’t think you’re naïve...or young and stupid.”

She looked up, shocked to see he was now closer to her, sitting on the edge of her bed, looking at her fondly. Her heart skipped a beat and she swallowed roughly.

He touched her hand, calloused fingers rough against the top of her hand.

“I think you’re bright, headstrong, funny...loyal. A wonderful auror that this department is lucky to have. There aren’t many women like you. I admire that. I think a bit too much, if I’m being truthful.” He added and she blinked, looking at him.

“Too much? You admire me?”

“That really shouldn’t sound surprising, Tina. I thought I was rather obvious.” Theseus said with a laugh. She flushed, pushing a strand of hair back. She froze as he snagged her hand softly, his touch gentle, but still firm enough to hold her still, and Tina’s heart seemed to crawl into her throat.

“O-oh.”

She cleared her throat, her cheeks burning.

“Porpentina…” He mumbled softly, to the point she thought he hadn’t said her name. “If I’m reading this wrong, if you don’t want...this. Please tell-”

She pushed herself forward, tugging at his shirt to pull him closer.

Still he closed the gap first.

His lips were chapped, she mused softly as her eyes slid closed. Rough. Just like the the calluses on his fingers as he cupped her cheek, the jagged scars on the side of his face. Evidence of the dangerous life he led. Vaguely she wondered where he had gotten those. Maybe a wizard he had been chasing...or it had happened during the war.

For many women, those scars, that roughness probably scared them away from Theseus Apollo Felis Scamander. He was a war hero, an auror...intimidating, strong...powerful.

And...maybe hers now.

A moment later, his hand tangled into the mess of hair, tilting her head slightly for more control. Control. Ownership.

His.

All too soon it ended, Theseus moving away, and Tina’s eyes fluttered back open, her face burning. He exhaled shakily then smiled.

“New York is definitely turning to be quite more interesting than I expected.” He finally managed and she couldn’t help the laughter that came out, and soon after Theseus was joining in.


The place was a disaster.

Honestly it was lucky that the entire apartment didn’t burn down with it, considering how quickly the curses had gone off in succession. Other aurors scoured the small flat, and he could hear the din of no-maj neighbors outside, trying to find out it was safe after a gas leak. At least that excuse still worked, Percival thought amused for a moment before investigating the kitchen. The stench of spoiled food made his stomach turn slightly, the faint memory of the smell of his own prison coming to mind, before he closed the icebox. Clearly when they had been killed had likely been the last time this place was visited for a long stint. Theseus had been right though. The spells that had nearly killed Theseus and Tina were new.

Likely a week or so old.

Which meant that there was someone in his city that was still connected to Theseus’s case, and trying to hide evidence of Dorin and Catin being here.

He sighed heavily, rubbing his brow. Of all the damn places, why did it have to be here? New York didn’t need more destruction than-

Percival stopped short as something cracked under his foot. Looking down he saw a photograph frame among the rubble. Kneeling down he pulled the image up and glanced at it, immediately spotting Rosalind in the center of the image. She was adorned in a simple dress, wrapped in a blanket and being held by a woman, Catin, he realized. Directly behind the two was a man, likely Dorin, tall and proud, and eyes seeming to pierce right up at him. Rosalind, it seemed, took after her mother, gentler shapes, lighter eyes...an innocent person.

The only innocent one of the small family, he realized grimly.

Still...Whatever her parents were, it was clear to him that, up until the very end, they cared for each other and had loved their daughter immensely. He wondered if they were pleased with who she had wound up with. Likely not in the aspect that neither he nor Newt were for Grindelwald, but the fact that they saw her as their-

His mind came to a screeching halt as he realized the implications of his thoughts.

He swallowed thickly, running a hand over his face to compose himself.

“Director?”

Percival turned, spotting Erasmus walking over.

“Find something?”

“Maybe. At least that they were in contact with someone else.” Erasmus said, holding a slightly scorched letter. “My German is a bit rusty, but it says, ‘Ebbe, It is my greatest pleasure to announcing that Catin gave birth to a healthy baby girl. We’ve named her Olimpia. She has Catin’s eyes, my...and smile. She’d be...and pleased to meet you, blood of my blood. We’re almost done with our business in the United States and will return soon.’”

“So they were clearly not running to move here, but that doesn’t really help us here.” Percival said, frowning. Erasmus shook his head.

“That’s what I thought too at first, and there’s a bunch of the rest of the letter that’s too scorched or damaged by water to be read, except for this. The first part of the sentence is cut off, but it goes about with ‘...our devices should be ready to use for New Years, and is currently housed in the piers. Merlin willing...before she’s six months old. For the greater good, Dorin’. Maybe they were making something to set off for New Years? Scamander did say that Dorin was a Potions Master. If he made a poison and let it out during New Years, thousands of no-maj’s would have been sick, or worse.”

“Mass death equates to mass panic. People, even from the Wizarding World, would try to take advantage of it.” Percival concluded with a darkening frown.

“Maybe it was destroyed in the fire at the pier?” Erasmus suggested and Percival frowned.

“Let’s hope for that. In the meantime, I want aurors doubling in patrolling the piers. Anything that goes in or out is checked. No exceptions.”

“Yes sir.”

Percival frowned, looking around at the apartment and the destruction.

Was it really that easy? Had it been destroyed in the fire at the pier? Was it even a thing? He hoped that something would reach out and answer him.

But what seemed to be déjà vu, only silence replied.


“Ebbe?”

“That’s what the note said.” Percival said as he poured himself a drink. Newt frowned slightly, brow furrowing as he thought about it.

“Perhaps a family friend?”

“Maybe…” Percival said. “I can’t recall anyone being listed as Ebbe associated with the two of them.”

“Might be a nickname.”

“Maybe.”

“...Do you think that he would-”

“Would want to care for Rosalind? Right now I have other things to worry about. ‘Olimpia’ is in good care right now, so locating this Ebbe and seeing if they’re related is low on my priority.” He said and Newt flushed brightly. He smiled, glancing at the enclosures at the case as they sat there. It was growing to become a routine, if Percival was being honest.

“You sure that Elaine didn’t mind taking care of Credence and Rosie?”

“Yes I’m sure Newt.” Percival said with a snort, remembering how Elaine had practically lit up when they had dropped the two children off. Thankfully, Newt had missed the subtle wink from Elaine as she waved the two goodbye. He felt heat travel up the back of his neck. Glancing at Newt however, he seemed lost in thought.

“Newt, Rosalind is alright, I promise.” Percival said and Newt blinked, before sighing.

“I just...what if she does have a family out there...wanting to meet her?”

Percival looked at Newt, watching as the younger Brit bit his bottom lip, clearly worried.

“...if it comes to that, we’ll deal with it at that time. But until then, she’s safer with you.” Percival said gently, brushing Newt’s hair back. The younger man blushed brightly, eyes shifting nervously, but a small smile appeared briefly on his face.

Percival smiled stretching a bit and wincing as he felt muscles pop from tension. Newt noticed and frowned.

“Are you alright?”

“Fine. Just tired I suppose.” Percival said, scratching the back of his neck, sighing.

Newt frowned.

“I haven’t heard you waking up from nightmares lately.”

“It’s just the case. I know we’re close to the solving it but it’s just beyond my reach.” Percival admitted. Newt’s concern softened and he smiled.

“I’m sure you’ll solve it.” He agreed gently and Percival felt a blush crawl up to his cheeks, quickly looking away. The date continued on quietly, Percival following Newt to finish feeding the creatures.

Honestly it should have been easy.

Though now he was staring at Newt as the British man apologized profusely about the chimera cub he hadn’t been exactly keen on showing Percival originally...for good reason it seemed.

“Honestly, it just means she likes you, that’s all.”

“I wish I had been warned a bit earlier than, ‘oh bollocks’ and then have her trying to make me a human torch.” Percival groused as he sat down on his bed and Newt flushed.

“I honestly thought she had gotten over that phase. But she is still only a cub so sometimes she is prone to tantrums.”

The fact that Newt considered the chimera to that of a toddler would have been amusing, if he wasn’t sporting a burn to the side.

“Please tell me you don’t carry Rosie, or bring Credence around her.”

“No, she’s too young and is prone to being unpredictable. She prefers to be alone anyways.”

“Where did you even get a chimera?”

“I have a permit.”

“That wasn’t my question.”

“Greece. Some poachers had killed her mother and were selling her as an exotic pet. I...didn’t much approve. I’ve been trying to find a sanctuary for her to live at, but it’s been difficult.”
Percival frowned, but winced as the burn reminded him that it was still there. Newt jumped slightly.

“Oh Merlin’s beard, right...the burn! Right...stay here, I’ll be right back.”

“Newt-”

The British man had already escaped out of the room. Sighing, Percival worked his shirt off, wincing at the slightly pink skin on his side. A few moments later he heard footsteps returning and Newt appeared around the corner. He paused for a moment, his gaze flicking for a moment, cheeks turning pink.

“Er...it’s murtlap essence.”

“...dare I ask what is made in that?”

“It’s just some of its tentacles ground up into a paste. It works fine on cuts and burns.” Newt explained, cheeks still pink. Percival thought for a moment, before shrugging.

“I don’t see the harm.” He finally said, turning slightly to expose the burn. Newt’s eyes flicked to the scar on his back and frowned, biting his lip for a moment, as he went over. Percival couldn’t shivered as a cool gel was gently applied to the burn, and a cool tingle slowly began to envelop the burn area, and soon the ache was barely noticeable.

“...do you want me to use this on that as well?” Newt finally asked and Percival glanced at Newt, saw the serious expression on his face.

“...there’s no point. It doesn’t hurt…”

Not anymore.

Newt was quiet, glancing at Grindelwald’s mark and Percival couldn’t stop the shudder as after a few moments, fingers gently ran against the scarred flesh on his upper back.

“You’re mine, Percival.”

He stilled, the world around him darkening as Grindelwald’s laughter echoed in his head.

“...right? Percival?”

He jumped a bit and looked over his shoulder and could see Newt looking at him in concern, having taken a few steps back. The British Wizard remained still, staring at him, the jar now on the table.

“I’m sorry...I shouldn’t have done that.”

“No, it’s fine.” Percival managed, relaxing after a moment.

“I don’t want to upset you.”

“You won’t.” He finally replied, looking at Newt, whose face was now a bright shade of red. Newt’s gaze flicked around, and he seemed to steel himself for the answer.

“What do you want, Percy?” Newt asked, his eyes never wavering from Percival’s. Slowly Percival turned to him, cupping Newt’s face gently. The british’s man’s face turned a darker red, but for once he kept eye-contact with him, biting his lower lip.

That shouldn’t have been nearly as attractive as it was.

“...You.” He finally muttered and Newt inhaled sharply. His gaze flicked around to Percival’s eyes, his mouth, to his shoulder and back again, swallowing audibly.

“You have me.” He finally said and Percival’s heart skipped a beat, and he let out the breath he didn’t know he was holding, and pulled Newt back to him. Newt exhaled shakily, but smiled nervously and Percival couldn’t stop the breathless laugh that escaped from him.

“I have you.”

Chapter Text

“You’re far too dressed for something like this.” Percival muttered as they fumbled up the stairs, barely able to keep their hands off each other, and Newt chuckled, almost nervously and high-pitched. He hesitated for a moment at the top of the stairs, staring at the magizoologist who was more flustered than usual.

“It’s ah…”

“...If you don’t want to do this-”

“I do, just...I’m scarred.” Newt snorted lightly. “Ugly scars to be honest. Not exactly an attractive feature.”

“Newt, you’re talking to a man that has to wear two prosthetics.” Percival replied with a chuckle, cupping the younger man’s blushing face. “I think I’ll manage”

Newt’s face was almost a burgundy color at this point and he bit his bottom lip, suddenly shy.

It was almost sinful to him, Percival realized and slowly he unbuttoned Newt’s waistcoat, shrugging the fabric off and leaving it in a pool on the floor.

Newt huffed a breathless laugh, pressing his face into the juncture between Percival’s neck and shoulder.

“Impatient aren’t you?”

“Isn’t that what the British think of Americans?”

With that Newt laughed again, but it was muffled shortly after as Percival dragged him down for another kiss. There wasn’t a lot of speaking afterwards as the two pushed and pulled articles of clothing, leaving a trail as they made their way down the hall.

It was only once he had unbuttoned the last of the buttons to Newt’s shirt, did he realize that he hadn’t been joking. And they weren’t small scars, Percival mused as he looked at Newt’s torso, when Newt’s shirt followed his waistcoat to the floor. No, they were a combination of small and large scars. They covered his frame, and with such a tall skinny figure, the scars were even more prominent.

Gently he grazed his fingers over jagged scars, likely claw marks that curled around Newt’s naval noticing the other man jump slightly at the touch.

“Your brother wasn’t joking that you get yourself into trouble.”

“Unfortunately.” Newt replied gently, exhaling softly, glancing down as Percival slid his thumb over a mess of scars across the lower part of his right abdomen. “I was in Germany, ran into Margaux who was trying to sell a runespoor to a dark wizard there. I intervened. This one, was from her. It wasn’t that bad, but the runespoor was terrified and lashed out. I wasn’t able to dodge its’ tail completely.”

“Merlin, Newt…”

“I’m quite alright. Still alive and kicking.” He said, but Percival glanced at him. His mouth became suddenly dry at the look the auror had on his face and he flushed, looking away. Percival returned his attention to the scars, silently examining them.

There were many others. The jagged lines around his shoulders, a rather painful looking bite mark that shimmered slightly in the slight glow from the streetlight outside on his wrist. A cluster of pale lines dotted his hip.

He paused as his hand ghosted over the scar slightly above Newt’s heart, arching up towards his neck disappearing over his shoulder. That one...was far cleaner than any of the other ones, and if he was not mistaken more direct than one made by a creature. Newer too.

“That was a poacher.”

Percival looked up at Newt, who shrugged lightly. He was blasé about it, turning his shoulder to show Percival the scar in its entirety.

“They weren’t so keen on losing a hippogriff. I had gotten her down into my case, and I was trying to leave but just as I was about to sneak out, they spotted me. I managed to apparate but was clipped with a cutting hex. I somehow managed to not splinch myself, but passed out on a dirt road pretty soon after landing. Some passing muggles found me, brought me to their village. Recuperated there, and then-”

“You nearly died.”

“It wasn’t a particularly strong cutting spell…”

“I doubt that, but that’s not my point.” Percival replied, “A few inches lower and you would have died.”

“Then no one would have figured it out...I would be dead. Tina would be dead...hundreds of people would be dead.”

The unsaid words silently echoed in the room. Percival tugged Newt to him pressing his lips to the center of the scar, tracing it with his mouth. Newt’s breath stuttered and he buried his hand into Percival’s hair, pressing a kiss of his own onto Percival’s forehead.

“You’re not alone anymore, Newt.” Percival said softly and Newt swallowed thickly. “You’re not.”

“I know.” Newt replied. “I know that.”

Percival was silent, before he tugged and spun Newt around, earning a surprised yelp. Newt blinked several times, staring up towards Percival.

“Let me show you.” Percival finally managed, and if possible, Newt’s face grew redder, his Adam’s apple bobbing slightly, before he nodded and Percival pulled him close.

“Are you sure you-”

“No more talking, alright?” Percival said and Newt let out a breathless laugh, offering a weak smile in agreement.

“No more talking.” He replied and pulled Percival back down, dragging his fingers through Percival’s hair. The room scaled down suddenly, the air hot as they continued to remove articles of clothing, kicking shoes off, the sound of the soles reverberating-almost deafening-on the wood floor. There was a jangle of a belt being undone, and Newt let out a mewling sound that sent a jolt of pleasure straight to Percival’s core.

He stared at Newt, taking in the younger man’s flushed face and his heart skipped a beat. Three words almost spilled out, they were on the tip of his tongue, but he swallowed them back, instead kissing Newt.

Not now.

Not tonight.


“Wow, Missus Elaine! That was fun!” Credence chirped as he scampered after Elaine, who smiled brightly.

“I’m glad you had fun. Was that your first time at a talky?”

“Mhm! I didn’t really go to ones in England. They said I needed to recoo...cup…”

“Recuperate?”

“Yup!” Credence said and Elaine chuckled as she bounced Rosalind gently, the tiny infant gurgling contently, gnawing on her fist as they got on a trolley.

“Well I’m sure if you ask, you can get Newt or Percival on it.”

“Really?”

“Of course really.” Elaine said. “Why would you think they wouldn’t?”

Credence glanced at his feet suddenly shy.

“I dunno...I don’t want to trouble them…”

“Credence, I don’t think there’s any way you could trouble them.” Elaine said, frowning as she paused and looked at the young boy. “What makes you think you would?”

“...I keep waiting for them to vanish. My Ma and Pa did...I was happy with them...and then…”

Elaine bent down to where she faced Credence, a gentle smile on her face.

“I can’t promise that nothing bad will ever happen, but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying yourself with your family.”

“My family?”

“Do you want to consider Newt and Percival a part of your family?” Elaine asked and shyly Credence nodded. “Then that’s what they are. Your family. Nothing can change that.”
Credence was quiet, and Elaine smiled gently.

“In any case, I think you’ll be happy for a long long time, Credence.” Elaine said.

“Can you see the future?” Credence asked and Elaine winked, not answering. Credence gaped for a few moments before beaming brightly, and staring out the window into the dark alleys of the streets whizzing past them. He thought he spotted a figure in one of those alleys when they finally got off the trolley, but when he glanced back, found it was empty. Shrugging, he followed Elaine the worry of what lay ahead vanishing with each step.


Percival awoke slowly, almost reluctantly, to a room aglow with the beginning light of the sunrise. He felt lighter than he had in almost a year...maybe longer. He almost laughed. Instead,he glanced over to his right as a soft sigh echoed in the room, the sheets rustling ever so slightly, and couldn’t stop the smile that crossed on his face as he watched Newt’s sleeping face burrow into the pillow, his back rising and falling with each breath.



He turned slightly, facing the british man a bit more before stretching left arm, fingers gliding through reddish curls. Newt shifted again, eyes fluttering open.

“Morning.” He muttered and Percival chuckled softly.

“So it is.” he replied, brushing the mop of hair back slightly, watching as the tendrils fell back into place. Newt yawned, stretching a bit, the sheet sliding a bit further down and bare skin becoming more visible. Percival smiled slightly before sitting up, pushing back strands of his hair that had fallen over his forehead, before grabbing his discarded prosthetic and clipping it over his knee.

“Sleep well?” Newt asked as he sat up as well managing to find his boxer shorts and pulling them on. Percival paused, blinking several times, almost surprised. “Percy?”

“...I think that’s the best sleep I’ve had in a year.” Percival responded truthfully. No nightmares, no phantom pains, no obsessive desires to check and see if every door was locked and protected.

It just felt like an actual night spent with a lover.

He glanced back at Newt, who pointedly was looking away, his cheeks a brilliant shade of red. He couldn’t quite wipe the smile off his face that time. The pair finally made it down the stairs, and both nearly had a heart attack as they spotted a figure sitting at the kitchen counter.

“How did you get in here?”

“I went through the door.” Theseus said as he glanced at them and their state of dress, seemed to consider something,before taking a sip of whatever was in the mug, grimacing. “How do you stand coffee, Mate? It is horrid.”

“Years of practice. And smart ass, I know through the door.”

“I came here on important business.”

“Case business?”

“Not exactly. You wouldn’t happen to know where Tina goes to eat do you?”

“And why do you want to know about places Tina likes to eat out at?” Percival asked, pouring himself a cup of coffee.

“Because she won’t tell me anything, and I’m not taking her out on a date to a hotdog stand.” Theseus replied. Percival paused for a moment, but Newt was the first to speak.

“A date? When did this come about?”

“Oh no, you don’t get to play overprotective brother if I can’t.” Theseus said and Newt rolled his eyes.

“There’s a difference between threatening with bodily harm and wanting to know when you and Tina became close enough to date, Seus.”

“I don’t know, maybe during the time you were necking with Percy over there.”

“Theseus!!”

The British Auror laughed, yelping all of a sudden as his brother tackled him and Percival rolled his before a familiar buzzing sensation alerted Percival, and he pulled out the mirror from his pants pocket. Tristan’s face appeared in the reflection, but his brow furrowed into confusion at the noise around him.

“...The heck is going on there?”

“Good morning to you too, Tristan. My morning is fine, thank you for asking.” Percival said as he leaned against the kitchen counter, staring at the two Scamander brothers as they practically wrestled with one another in the kitchen. Tristan rolled his eyes.

“Oh forgive me dear Brother. Top of the morning, how’s the weather?”

“Smart ass.”

“I live to please. Still, what’s going on? Sounds like a zoo.”

“You wouldn’t be far from the truth.” Percival said before smirking. “How’s Chicago? Livia’s family driving you up the wall?”

“Her brothers are fine. And Chicago is great. Cold, snowing...what’s not to love?”

“You’re a horrible liar.” Percival replied and Tristan rolled his eyes.

“...You know it amazes me how disgusting a city can be sometimes. How does Sebille handle living here? It stinks.”

“You’re not allowed within 50 yards of my office when you get back. I don’t need a repeat of when you fell into that sewer pipe four years ago. I still sometimes can smell that.”

“Okay, one I’m just visiting Livia’s family. If I manage to get into the sewer, something has gone horribly wrong. And two, at least it’s winter right now.”

“Still don’t need to smell shit for months afterwards. Granted how you usually smell...”

He grinned as Theseus snorted.

“Oh hardy har har. You’re hilarious.” Tristan remarked dryly pausing for a moment as something was said beyond the mirror, “...Oh by the way, have you heard from Elaine??”

Percival’s attention became solely on the mirror, staring at his brother. Newt looked up, frowning and glancing at Theseus who shrugged.

“What are you talking about?”

“Elaine.” Tristan said, waving his hand and gesturing to the approximate height of their sister. “Dark hair, olive green eyes, about this tall, is the sweetest girl to walk the planet unless you piss her off?”

“Tristan, I know who she is. What are you talking about?”

“She was going to wish Livia a happy birthday, but I haven’t heard from her at all today.”

“Livia hasn’t either?”

“No. I’m the only one in my family with a mirror, remember?”

“She was babysitting Credence and Rosie again last night...They could have stayed up late.”

But even that sounded like a weak excuse to him.

“Well yeah, but it’s late afternoon. Even if Elaine had stayed up all night, or had activities for the pair this morning, and even though you and Newt were…’working’,” Tristan air-quoting the word, earning another eye roll from Percival, “she wouldn’t have changed her routine that sudden or kept them out and not have contacted you this long. Now...I know I’m known for being reckless, and you, Sebille, and I lose track of time and sometimes forget to contact one another, but Elaine…”

“Elaine isn’t.” Percival finished, something crowding his throat. “I’ll go visit her apartment before I leave for work.”

“Okay, keep me up to date alright?”

“Can do.”

Percival was silent as the mirror went blank, before glancing at the Scamander brothers. He barely managed to open his mouth.

“We can go now.” Newt offered, standing from the table.

“...You sure? Your creatures-”

“Can wait a little while for food. They’ll be fine.” Newt interrupted, almost sternly. There was worry however with embedded underneath it, and Percival nodded, glancing at Theseus who offered a nod of confirmation. With a flick of his wrist, the dirty dishes flew and settled into the sink and the three men vanished with a crack of air.


“Not too bad.” Theseus said as he looked at the building. “Nice and small. Perfect for a single lady.” He added but Newt frowned.

“It’s an all girl’s apartment, right?”

“Mhm. It’s the only way she convinced any of us to live on her own.”

“Are men not allowed in here? Tina and Queenie’s landlord-”

“Men outside of the family aren’t. Family members are. And since the landlord is a witch, she happens to know I’m Director of Security...she doesn’t tend to much care if I come over. Thinks it will make her apartment inherently safer.” Percival said and Newt’s mouth twitched at the beginnings of a smile, while Theseus laughed.

“Ah….got a little admirer do you?”

“She’s not really my type.” Percival muttered off-handedly, and it was decidedly warmer all of a sudden as Newt felt his cheeks begin to burn. Before Theseus noticed thankfully, Percival began to walk up the steps, and the Scamander brothers followed after him.

“Morning Gladys.” Percival called out as an elderly woman with thick glasses glanced up, her eyes looking significantly larger through her spectacles. She was absolutely tiny in comparison to the three men, and hobbled out with the use of a gnarled cane.

“Oh hello Director. A bit earlier than normal isn’t it?” She wheezed and Percival smiled politely.

“Just checking up on Elaine. Do you know if she’s in?”

“Oh yes. She came home last night with those two children in tow...Strange, they didn’t look like any of your siblings children, though she called them as such.”

Percival cleared his throat, scratching the back of his neck.

“Haven’t seen them come down, so they should still be up. They were good children. Didn’t hear a sound from them at all all night.”

Percival blinked at that, glancing at Newt who looked equally confused. They both knew that Rosalind wasn’t one to sleep an entire night. Unless Elaine put a silencing charm up...but that didn’t make much sense. The walls were thin, but not that thin.

“Thank you Gladys.”

“Who are they?” Gladys asked, looking at the Scamander brothers.

“Friends of the family.”

“They better behave.”

“I’ll make sure of it.” Percival promised, and with another judgemental look, she nodded them through. Theseus glanced at the other two men, frowning.

“I thought Rosie woke up around four to be fed.” He said as they climbed the stairs.

“She does.” Newt said, glancing at his brother. “Like clockwork.”

“Maybe Elaine was a bit quicker than you two.” Theseus suggested, but Percival remained silent. They finally reached the floor, and Percival turned the corner walking a little ways down the hall, before finally stopping in front of a door. He began to knock.

“Elaine, it’s Percival. We were just-”

He paused as the door creaked open with the slight nudge, unlocked and unlatched. Something chilled in his stomach, hardening and he pulled out his wand.

“...is that normal of her?” Theseus asked, as he withdrew his wand, Newt following suit.

“No.”

“Are you su-”

“I’m sure.” He spat out, pushing the front door open a bit more for all three men to squeeze through, Theseus closing the door as quietly as he could behind them. They crept in the shadows, the apartment eerily quiet, as though devoid of any life. Newt’s face was paler now, worry etched into expression, as though instinct was telling him something was horribly wrong.

It set Percival’s heart racing as dread now flooded his stomach.

Minute things became noticeable to him.

A picture frame slightly askew, shoes discarded haphazardly in the hall. Glancing down the hall towards her bedroom, he saw her door was wide open, not closed as she usually did during the night, despite living on her own, and he could see the sheets that were probably to be used for Credence’s bed still folded on the corner of hers. They slowly walked down that small hall, pushing the door further open. Sure enough there was a small cot and a traveling crib she had borrowed from Tristan set up in the corner, both were empty, and looked like they hadn’t even been used.

“What is going on?” Newt murmured softly, but Percival couldn’t dignify a response. He had no idea either.

Theseus stepped backwards, taking in the hall. The other two were quick to follow after, but Percival paused as he glanced at an image of the family, askew...and what looked like a red smear edging the corner. He heard the door slide open to reveal the rest of the flat, but couldn’t help but stare at the picture a bit longer.

“...shit.”

“What?” Percival remarked. When his friend didn’t answer, he finally dragged his gaze to where Theseus and Newt were and his heart dropped to his stomach.

The living room area was a disaster; books, papers, and shattered glass littered the floor, all seeming to be a sickening trail to an overturned dinner table, and poking just out from the edge of the table, still as death, he spotted a set of bare feet.

His heart seemed to evacuate his chest and suddenly he couldn’t breathe.

“Elaine?!”

He rushed over to the table and the world seemed to fall still as he rounded the corner, the air pulled out of the room as he stared at his sister, stretched out alongside the table, one hand extended forward, fingers grazing her discarded wand, the other vanishing under her stomach.

And still, so still.

He barely registered that he had fallen to his knees, only the heavy wood of his prosthetic hitting the floor, him scooping up and cradling his baby sister, and the vice on his lungs tightening as she didn’t so much as respond.



“No, no, nononono. Elaine, Elaine, open your eyes for me! Elaine! Elli!!” He snapped in desperation.

Her head sagged backwards, blood smeared down her temple. It seemed impossible to suddenly hear anything over his heartbeat as he rocked her back and forth, hoping for some sort of sign. But there wasn’t any. He barely remembered that Theseus or Newt were there until the British auror knelt down and held the prone woman’s wrist in his hands, and he almost snarled at the British auror to not touch her.
If only to push away the inevitable.

“She’s alive.” Theseus’s voice cut through the rage, his voice even, cooling the fire in his stomach, and the red over his vision cleared slightly. “Her pulse is weak, and she needs medical attention, but she’s alive, Percival.” Theseus continued. “We need to get her to the hospital. I-”

“She’s my sister. I’m carrying her.” Percival said, his voice feeling raw. He picked her up, trying to ignore how heavy and limp she was. With a crack the three men vanished from the scene, and the apartment was quiet once again.

Chapter Text

“Give me all the details!”

Tina jumped and spun around, gulping as her sister leaned over her desk beaming.

“Details?”

“About you and Theseus!!”

And Tina’s face was surely on fire now as she gulped, before looking around to make sure no one was listening.

“How did you hear about that?!” Tina hissed out, dragging her sister to sit down. Queenie beamed.

“Theseus came over to get a pastry from Jacob and asked offhandedly what you liked to eat. His mind isn’t as closed off as Mister Graves is when it comes to who he fancies.”

Tina groaned, covering her face as Queenie smiled.

“He is incredibly sweet. And he’s an auror. Perfect for you.”

“Queenie…” Tina whined, but blinked when she glanced up at her sister and saw the younger Goldstein glancing towards the entrance, her expression changing as her face paled. Following her sister’s gaze, she stood when she spotted Theseus entering, a haunted expression on his face. “Theseus?” She called out. “What-”

“Credence and Rosalind are gone. Someone attacked Elaine Graves at her apartment last night and snatched the two of them during it.” He said, his voice thick, clearly trying to hide his emotions the best he could. The room seemed to go silent. Tina felt as though her lungs weren’t working right.

“Miss Graves...is she…” She heard Erasmus begin to ask.

“She’s alive. Barely though. The Director is at the hospital with her right now. In the meantime, I know he’ll want a group to go to her apartment and see if anything can be found.”

“On it.”

Several aurors stood, grabbing the coats.

“You’ll have to apparate in as the landlady doesn’t allow men that aren’t related into the apartment, and we’re trying to keep this quiet.”

“Alright, thanks for the information.” Erasmus replied and a small group hurried out of the room. Theseus glanced at Queenie.

“I know this might be too much to ask, but could you-”

“I’ll look after him.” Queenie interrupted. “Newt’s at the bakery?”

“Yes.”

“...Do you want to head back to the apartment or to the hospital to get the...evidence?” Tina asked as Queenie hurried away and Theseus sighed.

“We’re going to let Percival cover the hospital aspect right now. I want to head back over to the apartment. See if there’s anything I recognize from intel I receive from Europe.”

“I’ll go with you.” Tina said. Theseus paused, glancing at him. “They’re my family too...well extended family. Or basically-”

“I know what you mean.” Theseus interrupted, a small smile on his face cutting her ramble off. His smile slid off and he sighed.

“I think we’re going to have to postpone that date.”

“Don’t worry. I understand.” Tina said with a slight smile and he returned it, cupping her cheek gently in his hand, the rough calluses on his fingers brushing against smooth skin. She leaned into it temporarily, before they moved away and rushed off out of the department, shoes echoing down the hall.


The air was too thick, and it was hard to breathe. Percival sat in the uncomfortable chair of the waiting room, eyes burning a hole in the wall in front of him. It was a busy day, but for him it was dead quiet as he sat...alone.

He couldn’t call anyone. Not yet...not until there was news.

He swallowed thickly. He always hated hospitals...how Elaine managed to stomach coming here every day was a mystery, especially given the fact how many times she had wound up there as a child. Back then he would sit there, staring at the wall, waiting.

And once again he had to wait.

He looked up when the door opened and stood.

“Healer Roche, I-”

“The amount of times I healed you here...and the fact that I personally trained your sister, I think Jacen will be just fine.”

“...How is she?”

“Stable, thank Merlin.” Jacen said. “If you had been any later, I doubt I would have been coming out here with good news.”

“How bad?”

“It appears she was severely beaten,” Jacen said, taking out his notebook and looking at the words scribbled on it, flipping the page, “plenty of bad injuries, but the worst injuries are a broken arm and the broken eye-socket, which is going to take the longest to heal. But it is manageable. I collected any possible evidence as well. I’ll send it over to your department in a moment.”

Percival swallowed, wordlessly nodding. He opened his mouth, closed it, before opening it again, but no words came out. The old healer seemed to sense the one question that Percival was hesitating to ask and gave a gentle, comforting smile.

“There were no signs of sexual assault, Percival.”

The relief winded him for a moment before his lungs returned to function, and all his energy seemed to evaporate. He felt absolutely exhausted now, and struggled to remain standing.

“Once we’ve moved her to a room, we’ll let you sit down with her. She’s still out though, and will be for a little while.”

He nodded silently, unsure if he could get his voice to work again. Jacen frowned for a moment, seeming to hesitate before sighing.

“While I said that some of the evidence would be sent to your office...this one, I felt you needed to see right away. It was found in her blouse.” Jacen said, hesitation in his voice as he flicked his hand and a small paper bag flew over to them. Frowning he plucked it out of the air and opened it, emptying the contents into the palm of his hand.

And as he stared at the object in his hand, it was as though the air had been sucked out of the room again. But this time he couldn’t quite get his breath back as the glimmer of the charm of Grindelwald’s mark reflected mockingly in his hand.

And the Dark Wizard’s laughter seemed to echo in the still air.

The time after seemed to blur. He forced himself to move after a few minutes, following the Healer, the bag clutched tightly in his hand, knowing that soon his parents and siblings would be here, having contacted them as he waited for Elaine to be moved to her room. It wasn’t too long after hearing his father say that they would be there shortly, that he was able to visit her. He had prepared himself, told himself it wasn’t going to be pretty. But it still felt like a swift punch in the gut as he entered the silent room and stared at the form resting in the bed, one arm bandaged and half of her face covered in bandages.

“Why…” he tried to croak.

“As I said, these take the longest to heal. The bandages are there so she doesn’t irritate the mending bones. And it won’t do her any good if it sets the bones the wrong way. We’d have to break that bone again to reset it correctly.”

“When is she going to regain conscious?”

“Possibly a day or so. The Skele-Gro is painful, Percival. We have her under right now and she’ll be out for the night so it isn’t bothering her. I’m not sure how much longer after though. That will be up to her.”

Percival wiped his mouth, staring at his sister, his baby sister, before nodding silently.

“Thank you.”

“I’ll inform the nurses to take your family here when they arrive.”

Percival nodded again, unable to get his voice to work. He heard the Healer leave the room. All sound seemed to vanish as he stared at her as she slept, her torso rising and falling with each breath.

And still relief did not come.

This was his fault. He should have known better...should have known she would have been in danger.

The fault was his...and his alone.


Theseus glanced up as footsteps echoed in the foyer, blinking in surprise as Percival walked in, expression stoic as ever.

“Mate...I’m not sure-”

“I need to be here, Seus.” Percival interrupted as Tina rounded the corner before stopping, looking at her higher-up with wide eyes. Theseus frowned.

“...How is she?”

“Stable...but she’s unconscious. She’ll be out for a little bit. My parents are with her right now.” Percival said shortly, glancing into the apartment again, staring at the blood.

Theseus glanced down the hall, almost hesitating, before gesturing to the door.

“I don’t see any evidence of Grindelwald or his allies. The door isn’t broken...and any of her neighbors would have heard someone breaking the door down. Either it was unlocked, or she let them in.”

“Probably…” Tina said, unsure and glanced worriedly at Percival, whose jaw seemed clenched in anger.

“So let’s say she lets them in. She turns around, and they attack her.” Theseus began and Percival shook his head.

“She wouldn’t have let anyone in that she didn’t know.”

“Let’s just say she did…”

“But she wouldn’t have.”

Theseus looked at Percival, almost annoyed. Tina looked around, feeling tension growing as both aurors sized one another up.

“In any case Percival, they clearly surprised her. And they had to have put up silencing charms so her neighbors didn’t hear a thing.”

“Probably.” Percival replied.

“She fought like hell.” Tina interrupted observing the burns etched in the wall from deflected spellfire. Percival was quiet, staring at the ruins his sister’s apartment.

“Your fault This is all your fault.”

“You should be proud-”

“I never said I wasn’t proud of her.” Percival interrupted shortly, glaring at Tina. Theseus remained quiet, observing his friend for a moment before sighing.

“Mate, what are you doing here?”

“Going through a crime scene, what does it look like?”

“And I’ve let you hear the theory, but you know just as well as I do that you’re not supposed to be involved in this scene. Elaine is your sister. Let the others deal with it. Tina has it covered.”

“I’m not-”

“Don’t make me have to drag you out of here, Perce.” Theseus warned quietly. Tina watched as Percival seemed to war with himself, before curtly nodding. “Perce, Goldstein will have any information sent directly to your office, you have my word.”

Percival silently nodded, but seemed to hesitate, looking around his sister’s apartment again, clearly wanting to stay where his sister had been.

“Percival.” Theseus said. “Your aurors are taking this scene over, alright? I’m just here to make sure I don’t spot anything that I’ve seen in previous cases in Europe. Your team will tell you everything they fine.”

“Your fault. This is your fault.”

“Perc-”

“Fine.” Percival snapped, looking over at Tina. “Goldstein?”

“You have my word sir. All information will be sent your office.” She said quickly and he swallowed, before turning on his heel and storming out. It was a blur again, before Percival realized he had somehow gotten downstairs again, and had been walking down the street. He was, for once in his life, unsure on where to go. What to do.

His sister had been hurt...badly...and he couldn’t be involved in her case.

“I trust you. I can always count on you.”

He slowed his step as another jab at his heart made it difficult to breathe. He inhaled and exhaled slowly. She could always count on him, except this time. And this time she was injured.

“How does it feel to know you failed her?”

He kept walking, the cool air burning his lungs as he made his way down the streets, trying to escape the taunting voice in the back of his head. His eyes burned from the same chilled air, and blurred for that reason.

“I’m nervous about who's going to be caught in the middle when they crash together. And you know how it usually winds up when I get these feelings, Percival.”

She was right.

She was alway right.

Only this time...the one caught in the middle...had been her. He had tried to protect her, keep her away from the horrors of the world...only to have her become a target.

“I wonder what it will feel like for her. Crying out for her big brother to save her, and this time he can’t come running in like her knight in shining armor. How will it feel to know you failed her?”

Grindelwald’s taunt echoed in his head, and something snapped inside him, and blinding rage flooded into his system and all he saw was red.

Your fault.


“Honey, this isn’t your fault.”

Newt glanced up at Queenie as she stared at him, one of his hands clasped tightly between hers. A cup of hot chocolate sat forgotten on the table next to them, long since having lost its warmth. Jacob was leaning next on the chair that Queenie was sitting in, mirroring his fiancée’s look of concern. Newt swallowed, the knot forming in the back of his throat making it difficult to even breathe.

“They had to go after those two specifically for something. I should have-”

“Newt, honey...the only ones at fault are the ones that took them in the first place. You’re human. You couldn’t have known what was going to happen.”

Newt swallowed, before nodding, wiping at his eyes.

“She’s only a baby. She can’t protect herself. And Credence...Credence is still recovering from everything. If he gets too scared...he could-”

“Then we’ll find them before anything happens.” Jacob countered, gently, soothingly. “If you and I could find a bunch of magical creatures in one night, we’ll find the kids somehow.”

Newt swallowed down the knot that was forming in the back of throat, making it almost impossible to breath, before nodding. Jacob pressed his hand into Newt’s shoulder offering a sympathetic smile.

“You should get Graves too. More eyes to look around, and he’s an auror...he should be good at detective stuff, right?”

“He is.” Newt remarked, clearing his throat and standing. Jacob stopped him for a moment.

“Newt, they’ll be alright. They’re your kids, they’ll make it through this.”

Newt blinked several times, the words echoing in his head as it processed them.

His children…

He supposed that was true...but he had never verbally suggested it.

You suffered twice if you worried, but your heart would break if you dared to hope for more.

He couldn’t wipe the smile off his face, as small as it was.

“I’ll...I’ll go find Percival.” He finally managed, “we’ll meet up at the park?”

“Of course.” Queenie said with a smile. “We’ll see you there.”

Newt stood and walked out of sight from the windows and with a slight twist the world blurred in a myriad of colors.

When he landed something felt off, and he blinked, looking around frowning. He took a step and jumped slightly as a violent cracking sound echoed in the foyer, something giving under his foot. Moving back a step, he saw to his surprise a piece of destroyed china, a dinner plate if the design on it was any indication.

“Percival?” Newt said slowly, walking through the destroyed living room cautiously and turned the corner, before pausing a moment to observe the scene. Slowly he walked forward. Towards the man that stood in the middle of the ruins. Percival didn’t respond, just stared blankly ahead.

“Perc-”

“Get away from me.”

Newt blinked, stunned.

“Percy-”

“You should be blaming me. Why aren’t you blaming me?!”

Newt started in surprise, eyes widening.

“This wasn’t-”

“If you say it wasn’t my fault, so help me!” Percival snapped spinning around angrily, but staggered backward, stopping himself from doing something he probably would regret. Newt could see the grief embedded in Percival’s expression, hear it in his voice. “It is my fault!! All of this is!”

“It isn’t.” Newt replied calmly and Percival let out an angry sound.

“You don’t understand, Newt!”

“Then make me understand.” Newt said. “I don’t blame you for Credence and Rosie’s kidnapping, I certainly don’t blame you for what happened to Elaine, what should I be blaming you for?”

“If I had been stronger, they wouldn’t have been taken. If I...I-”

“You’re human.” Newt said, staring at Percival, repeating what Queenie had said to him just hours earlier. “You’re just one man. You couldn’t have known-”

“I know Grindelwald better than anyone in this damn country, Newt! I know him better than most even want to, dammit!”

Newt was quiet, staring at Percival with a neutral expression, before it shifted into something else. Almost a stunned realization seemed to settle over him and Percival’s changing expression seemed to sense the conclusion.

“...Destroying your arm and leg...giving you the Deathly Hallows mark on your back...he didn’t just leave it at that...did he?”

“Newt-”

“He’s someone who oozes with dominance, anyone who is the same caliber, or even more so...he would feel the need to throw his weight around. Make them subservient.”

“Stop. Newt, please don’t-”

“He assaulted you, didn’t he. And you think he broke you because of it.”

Percival went still, completely rigid, staring at Newt, but apparently not really seeing him. It was as if he was looking right past him.

“It’s not true. That isn’t your fault, Percy...none of that is your fault.”

“You say that, but you-”

“You’re not broken…”

Percival glanced up at Newt, startled at how close the British magizoologist was now.

“You’re not broken, Percival.You aren’t.”

“You don’t know that.”

“I never met you before this...so I can’t say with certainty that you weren’t changed...however, you were badly injured, maimed...assaulted, and imprisoned for nearly a month by Grindelwald, Percival. And you’ve managed to relearn how to walk, how to duel with a prosthetic. You’ve returned to your job and have been working tirelessly to right the wrongs that happened in a year, when many in your position would have just lied down and given up.” Newt continued. “Why would I think you’ve been broken by him?”

“I didn’t protect them. Any of them...I-”

“What happened to your sister, what happened to Credence-past and present, what happened Rosie, what happened to your country is not your fault, and what happened to you isn’t your fault.” Newt said gently, resting his forehead against Percival’s, the older man letting out a shuddering breath. “The only one I blame is Gellert Grindelwald. Only him.”
Percival was quiet, and Newt feeling the tension leave slightly, tugged on the aurors arm.

“Come on...neither of us are going to sleep...let’s go looking for them. Jacob and Queenie are already out there.”

“Newt, Kowalski-”

“Is not going to stand idly by when two children were snatched, Percival. He cares about them just as much as we do.” Newt said quietly and Percival was silent, before Newt looked around. “...best clean this place up first though.”

Percival snorted weakly, but watched as Newt began to fix the broken china, the chips of glass returning to their original shape and floating to the kitchen drawers. The British man glanced back at him after he was finished, offering his hand, which Percival slowly took, being led out of the apartment and into the cool air.

“I still stand by what I saw, Percy.” Newt said quietly as they walked down the streets, if Percival didn’t know better aimlessly to calm him. “What happened to Elaine wasn’t your fault.”

“It feels like it is.” Percival muttered.

“Because you’re her older brother and you’re an auror.” Newt replied. “You shoulder far too much guilt and grief in my opinion.”

“Says you.”

“I bet you had that beard solely because you started overworking.” Newt teased, trying to change the topic and Percival huffed.

“No that wasn’t the case.”

“Hm?”

“I didn’t like having a beard.” Percival amended, rubbing a hand against his jawline, grimacing. “I actually preferred a clean shaven face. Though it felt strange without it when I first shaved it off.”

“Then why did you have...” Newt trailed off in realization, and Percival winced out of sympathy. He didn’t blame Newt...he didn’t know.

“It was a way to calm the department at work. I didn’t look the way Grindelwald had impersonated me. And...I couldn’t really stand to look at myself in the mirror, knowing what someone did using my face...”Percival murmured, trailing off for a moment, “...it’s pathetic I know.”

“Not in the slightest.” Newt quickly replied, almost sounding angry. Percival blinked several times. “But I don’t agree with it. The fact you were forced to keep something you weren’t comfortable with because without it, it made others uncomfortable is horrid. It wasn’t your fault, and you shouldn’t be punished for that.”

Percival stared at him, almost in an unfathomable expression. Newt slowed in his step, blinking in confusion and concern.

“...I...did I say something wrong?”

“No...no...just Elli…” he trailed off, clearing his throat. “Elaine said the same thing when I had decided to keep it.”

Newt cursed himself as he floundered with what to say.

“Well...that means I’m right, correct?”

Percival let out rough sounding laugh.

“I suppose it is.”

There was a pause, as though all the sound had been drained out of the street. Usually it was welcomed, but it seemed Percival couldn’t stand the silence this time.

“When we found out Ma was pregnant again, Seb and I had come home from school only to have Tristan come running out screaming he was going to a big brother. We thought he was joking. After Tristan they had thought she couldn’t have anymore kids. But Elaine was a force to be reckoned with.” Newt started at the non-sequitur and looked at Percival, blinking as he thought the man looked like he was about to cry. “She was pretty small too, when she was born. And she...she was always crying. Probably from the added stimulation of her being an empath, but we just thought she had colic or something. I was the only one to get her to calm down when she was a baby, at least that’s what my parents said. Ma...Ma and Pa always said that she would calm down in an instant if I was home. She told me when that when she was younger, that she could sense me almost immediately and it was a safe feeling...she didn’t have to worry, because I would protect her. And this time...I didn’t.” He added softly and now Newt knew he wasn’t imagining Percival Graves crying now. Slowly, like he would do for an injured creature, he pressed his hand to Percival’s, feeling him jump slightly under his hand, but didn’t pull away.

“You’ll find the one who did this Percival.”

Percival was quiet, before swallowing audibly, his brows furrowing and he covered his face, hunching forward.

“Sorry...I’m sorry.” He muttered and Newt walked next to him, a hand running up and down the older man’s back, leaning against Percival.

“It’s alright. I’m here. I’m here.” Newt said gently, swallowing down the knot that was forming in his throat. Everything would be alright. After all…

One suffered twice when they worried.

Chapter Text

“Hello Mister Graves.” Queenie said, as the two men strode over to her and Jacob, who was glancing around, making sure that no one else was around.

“Ms. Goldstein.”

Queenie offered a sympathetic smile, hugging Percival before he could react. He blinked several times, before returning the hug, the knot in the back of his throat becoming incredibly painful, as he dropped his forehead onto her shoulder.

“Elaine will be fine, Mister Graves. You’ll see.” She whispered kindly. “And Credence and Rosie will be found soon. I just know it.”

Silently he nodded, before moving away, clearing his throat. Neither men around them made a comment.

“So...where should we start?” Jacob asked and Percival sighed, clearing his throat.

“So far her apartment, but that’s all we know where she was.” Percival replied.

“We’ll start there then.”

“Your brother said I couldn’t be in the apartment.” Percival said, glancing at Newt, who shrugged.

“One, I doubt that’s ever stopped you. Two, we aren’t going to be going into the apartment. We’re going to be outside of it.” Jacob said, a grin on his face. “Whoever attacked her didn’t choose her at random. You know that as much. It be too much of a coincidence. So my thinking is that they were watching her first.”

Percival was quiet, brow furrowing in thought.

“...that is a good point.”

Jacob grinned for a moment, before sobering slightly as they reached her apartment, taking in the scene. It was a nice neighborhood, nice neighbors. A good place in general. It didn’t deserve to be tainted in such a way.

“So...you think he or she watched her from here?” Queenie said, looking at the alleyway. Jacob nodded.

“It makes sense. They could have stayed hidden in the shadows and watched for her.”

“So they would know her habits and rituals. As well as any neighbors.”

“That’s what I’m thinking...still...it’s not much.”

“It’s better than we had.” Percival admitted, staring up at the window. He wondered if Elaine had felt as though she was being watched. Maybe sensed something.

If she had, she hadn’t told him. Or had she, and he just hadn’t paid any attention to it?

“It’s not your fault, you know.”

He jumped and looked to his side to see Jacob looking at him. He frowned.

“It’s not.”

“It feels like it is.”

“Because she’s your sister.” Jacob replied with a shrug. “I get it, really. If anyone had messed with my brother like that, I would have throttled them.”

“You have a brother?”

“Had. He died in the War.”

“Oh…” Percival said, swallowing roughly, “I’m sorry, I didn’t-”

“No, it’s fine. It’s not like you would know. I don’t really talk much about it. Or him.” Jacob replied, with a slight smile as the began to walk, following Queenie and Newt who were just ahead, down the street, glancing around quietly for clues. “I don’t think I’ve even told Newt yet. Queenie knows, but that’s because I had an episode a few months back remembering. She helped me through it.”

Percival was quiet, staring out at his sister’s apartment.

“I know that people like me, we don’t get what you guys go through every day. I get it.” Jacob finally said glancing at Percival. “And maybe that’s for the better, I don’t know. I doubt everyone who sees magic reacts the way I do.”

Percival snorted his agreement.

“But, since I am one of the lucky few who sees this world, I want to help. So if you ever need anything, within reason of course, I don’t mind helping out.” Jacob continued.

“Mr. Kowa-! Jacob...thank you, sincerely.” Percival said and Jacob grinned.

“Mister Graves! Jacob! We found something!”

Both men looked up and hurried over to where Newt and Queenie had stopped, Newt peering down at something on the ground. At first, Percival didn’t recognize it, not until the soft glow of Newt’s wand illuminated a small pacifier, one that Percival recognized from the small R inscribed on the end, a rose pattern under it.



“That’s Rosie’s.”

“So they walked down this way.”

“Why didn’t they apparate away?”

“It’d make too much noise. Besides, you couldn’t apparate in the apartments. Not at that time anyway. You can now, but it’s an active investigation.” Percival responded.

“That doesn’t make any sense, would it?” Jacob remarked with a frown. “I think someone would have spotted someone walking with two unwilling children. Credence would have put up a fight at least. And you all said that it was an all female apartment, so they would have noticed a man walking with two kids, right? It doesn’t make sense.”
Percival looked around, his frown deepening.

“No...that doesn’t make sense.” Percival said.

What was going on?


That question was still floating in Percival’s brain the next morning as he sat with Tina, Theseus, and a few of the aurors.

“I still want to know why though...”

“What?” Percival asked, looking at Tina.

“Why would they attack her now?” Tina clarified. “And kidnap Rosie and Credence?”

“A warning probably.”

“They’ve had plenty of opportunity though. Especially with Elaine. If they were going to attack her as a warning, why not when we had first started and not now where there would have been more witnesses. Grindelwald knew you were close to her, if it was a warning or message from him, he wouldn’t have waited till now. It’s not like it wouldn’t have been obvious that Elaine was babysitting for the night.”

“And Elaine wouldn’t have let a stranger in, especially with two young children in the apartment.” Percival said with a frown.

“Maybe they got spooked because we found Annabelle and they worried what she would find? She was her healer. Or us finding out that Dorin and Catin hadn’t come to the states alone scared them?” Theseus remarked.

“That makes sense but why that night of all nights? There were plenty of times when she was alone...and neither Credence or Rosie fit the profile of kids taken already.”

“So Elaine was, what? An opportunistic attack?” Theseus remarked, frowning. “Maybe they aren’t related to either case. Maybe Grindelwald is still after Credence-”

“Or maybe Grindelwald wanted Elaine because she saw something last year that he realized was bad news if it got out and didn’t realize there were other witnesses at her apartment.” O’Reilly offered offhandedly, flipping through a file. When silence greeted him, he looked up and was met by three very confused looking aurors.

“What?”

“Why would a healer have seen anything that would have worried Grindelwald of all people? He made sure she wasn’t around him while he was impersonating Graves.” Tina asked. O’Reilly now mirrored their confused looks.

“Because she went down to the cells a little while after the Director was found?” He replied in confusion. Theseus and Tina looked over at Percival, whose expression was almost fathomless. O’Reilly seemed to pick up on the expression and swallowed hard. “She ah...didn’t tell you, I gather.”

“Are you telling me, my baby sister, a healer who has no training whatsoever in any type of interrogation tactics or as an auror, was in the same room as a Dark Wizard, and you allowed it?!” Percival snapped, his voice dangerous. O’Reilly seemed to quail.

“I-I didn’t do any interrogation Sir. I...I just went down with her and Madame President because I was ordered to Sir.” O’Reilly stammered out. Percival stared at the auror, his eyes almost alight with anger, before spinning on his heel and storming out of the room. The aurors parted out of the way of their Director, eyes large in fear.

They had never seen him this angry before.

And for once, Percival couldn’t find it in him to care.


“What the hell gave you the right?!”

Seraphina looked up from the report she was reading over, before placing her quill back in its slot, face neutral, looking at Percival.

“I assume you’ve been told now.”

“That my sister was in the same room as the man who held me hostage for a month?!” Percival snapped, slamming the door shut. Seraphina looked at him with a mask of calm.

“She requested to go down there.”

“A request you could have DENIED. She had no reason to be down there!”

“She wanted to get a full spectrum of what had happened to you, Percival. And seeing as you were reluctant to even let other types of healers near you-”

“SHE’S MY SISTER!!” He roared and a nearby glass vase shook slightly. Seraphina however remained calm and watched as the rage drained away, as his shoulders slumped forward. “She’s my sister…”

“I know.” She said gently, her eyes looking at him calmly, refusing to leave his gaze. “And I’m sorry, however at the time your sister made a valid point.”

“...Is it possible that she saw anything, anything that would have made her a target?”

“Not that I’m aware of. She focused mainly on the memories of the abuse that you suffered through. Something that, from what I could tell, Grindelwald was eager to show her.”

Of course he would have been, Percival thought as he swallowed roughly. Another jab towards him would have been to torture his sister. And her being an empath would have given her nearly a front seat view of what he had gone through.
Grindelwald would have been ecstatic.

“Did Elaine…”

“No. She only gave anything that she assumed would be helpful. Anything else would have gone against patient privacy. Though to be honest, the way she was crying...I don’t think she would have told me even if she wasn’t a healer.”

Percival swallowed, slumping into the chair, dragging his fingers through his hair. He glared at her.

“You should have said no.” He said with finality.

“That wasn’t your call to make.”

“She might have been targeted because of that, Phee.” He ground out, the edge lost in his voice but no less angry.

“She was doing her part to help you and the MACUSA, Percival. I didn’t like it any better, but given her abilities...” Percival was silent for a moment as Seraphina sighed.

“I am sorry you had to find out this way, Percival. And I am sorry that it even had to happen to us and especially to you, but I couldn’t let him leave without ensuring that our country was safe. It was for the greater good.”

Percival stood abruptly, looking away and began to leave but paused, before exhaling slowly.

“You know, you’re not the first person to lately tell me that something was for the greater good. And I’m getting tired of it.”

With that he stormed out of the office, pausing for a moment to collect himself before walking away, his footsteps echoing down the hall.


It felt empty, Newt decided as he walked down the streets. It had been a year, almost two now that he had had taken over guardianship of Credence. In that time, the boy had rarely left him alone. Even here in the States, Credence had never been far.

Now, with him and Rosie missing, it felt like a gaping wound that wouldn’t close was in his chest until he found them. He had always known creatures had an uncanny knack for maternal instincts. He hadn’t realized he was capable of doing that.

Sighing, he turned left, intending to head over to the bakery, meeting up with Jacob and Queenie, collecting his suitcase and then going to continue the search. He slowed however when the sensation of being watched suddenly taking forefront on his mind. He glanced around, hand resting on his pocket. Pickett chirped worriedly from his pocket. Newt frowned and began to pick up his pace, turning around several corners.

The sensation didn’t abate. Instead it grew. He turned, looking around, trying to spot who was watching him, his brow furrowed. It took only a second to spot red hair, and the familiar woman standing in the crowd, staring at him, playing with a small dark necktie, one that would fit a child. Newt’s heart lurched at the familiar object and she then turned, sauntering away, catching the eye of several men. Newt hurried after her, anger flooding his veins, ignoring reason or the voice screaming in his mind to get his brother, Tina, or Percival. That something wasn’t right.

None of that mattered at the moment.

“Margaux! Margaux!!” He hissed and she chuckled, turning away from the main street.

“My, my. I’ve never zeen you so angry, Scamander.” She teased, heels clacking against stone.

“What did you do!?” He called out as he turned a corner. She vanished, but her laughter rang out.

“Is it ze necktie that caught your interest?” The voice echoed and Newt followed it, ignoring Pickett’s chirping. “Did it remind you of anyone?”

“Where is Credence and Rosie, Margaux! If you’ve bloody hurt them-”

“Oh Monsieur Scamander, zis is not a fun game. You aren’t playing along.”

“I’m not in the mood for games!!”

“Too bad.” He turned, as Pickett suddenly shrieked and he barely managing to block a spell, stumbling a few steps back.

“Expelliarmus!!”

“Zis is more fun when you’re playin’ along.” Margaux sang, magic arcing back towards him, and footsteps echoed as she continued dodging Newton’s spell.s The British man cursed, trying to keep up with the smuggler, which was proving difficult. He was running on little sleep. But panic was mingling with worry and anger. She wasn’t escaping on him. Not this time.

“Where are they?!”

She cackled.

“Stupefy!” He yelled, aiming the spell towards the voice. She yelped and he saw a form fly to the ground, sliding into some debris.

He stormed over to her.

“We must stop meeting like zis Newt. Zis grows rather old, no?”

“Enough games. Where. Are. They.”

She grinned, red lips stretched as blood dripped down her chin.

“Do not worry Newt. You shall see soon enough.”

There was a popping sound, and Pickett shrieked again in his ear. He spun around.

“Stupefy!”

He felt himself fly backwards, having a flash moment of weightlessness, before crashing once, then twice into the ground, before colliding with a wall. He slumped forward, trying to remain conscious, but the darkness edging around his eyes began to grow. Margaux’s shoes entered his waning vision, another set of shoes appearing right next to hers.

“J'ai une autre tâche pour vous, Margaux.”

“Mais-“

“Vous serez bien payé, margaux. Vous avez ma parole.”

There was a scoff and a sigh before Margaux entered his vision.

“Je suis désolé, Monsieur Scamander. You know ze saying: business is business.”

And Newt finally succumbed to the darkness blanketing his vision, one name coming to mind before he knew nothing else.

“Percival…”


Percival slowed for a moment, blinking several times at the chill that raced down his back for a second. He glanced behind him, as though expecting to see someone, but found no one. Frowning he turned and continued down the hall, hurrying when he spotted his parents.

“She’s awake?” Percival asked as he reached his parents.

“For the moment. They’re making her take another sleeping draught, but she’s awake right now.” Brigham replied, a frown settling on his face as pulled Alma close.

“She’s asking for you, Percival.” Alma said, sniffling heavily. Percival flinched, glancing at the door.

“Go on, Son.” Brigham said. “We’ll sit down with her after you’re done.”

“You sure?”

Brigham nodded and Percival steeled himself before opening and closing the door to the room, keeping quiet as the healers moved around. Finally they were done and nodded at him, exiting. And then it was silent.

“...P...ercy…?”

He looked up sharply at her face, and saw that, though she was barely conscious, her visible eye partially open, staring at him.

“Yeah...yeah it’s me. I’m here.”

“...where…?”

“It’s okay. You’re at St. Agatha’s.”

“...first time...I’ve been in...one of these...rather than helping people get...in them.” She forced out, her voice heavy with sleep. The knot throbbed in the back of his throat and he cleared it, trying to speak.

“Yeah. Damn well scared twenty years off of my lifespan too.”

“M’sorry.” She murmured meekly, and he blinked rapidly, willing the tears back.

“It’s okay. I...” her eyes were closed for a moment and he sighed, “...why didn’t you tell me?”
Elaine looked back towards him, blinking tiredly.

“You went down to see Grindelwald before his transfer to Europe.” Percival began. “You let down those walls that I taught you to always keep up. You let that man’s soul and mind into your head. Why? Why would you do that?”

“Because I had to.”

“No, you didn’t. You didn’t have to go there. You shouldn’t have, you-”

“I went down there...because I had to...I needed to see the monster that hurt my big brother...see what he did...to help you.” She interrupted softly, cupping his cheek. “I went down there, knowing it wasn’t going to be pretty...knowing that I wasn’t going to like what I saw, but still...I went down there. Because...you’re the brother that would be at home in a second if Mama or Papa asked you because I wasn’t feeling good, the brother...that taught me to put up mental walls so it didn’t hurt when I went out anywhere, the brother who...if he even hears that I’m remotely interested in someone will make a folder detailing what that person has done and send it me. ”

He swallowed and tried to find his voice as she chuckled lightly, but it seemed lost all of a sudden as she pushed some strands of hair back.

“As to why I didn’t tell you...because I knew you didn’t want anyone to know. You didn’t want anyone to know what he did to you, including your family. Which was why when you were actually well enough, you requested someone other than me to be healing you. At that point, I had already known...that’s why it wasn’t a surprise and I didn’t fight it.” She said with tired laugh. “I decided I was going to help you in any way I could...even if you were unaware of what I knew. Because at the end of the day...scarred, hurt, or not...you’re my brother, and I love you. What other reason could there be?”

“Elli-”

“You know just because I’m the baby of the four of us, doesn’t mean I can’t try to protect the three of you…” She murmured, poking his forehead. “Similarly, just because you’re the oldest son...doesn’t mean you have try and shelter all of us. We’re family. Sticking together comes naturally.”

He snorted weakly, swallowing to fight the knot.

“I never wanted you to get hurt.”

“We’re Graves. Blood loss comes with name.”

He let out another weak laugh, closing his eyes as her fingers weakly flitted through strands of hair.

“What can you remember happened to you?”

“Mmm...I was making dinner. Credence was playing with Rosie...in the living room. Heard the front door open, barely managed to put a shield up...He was a good dueller.”

Percival swallowed brushing back her hair.

“She took Credence and Rosie.” Elaine muttered, barely conscious again

“She?”

“Mhm. I think that’s how...how they snatch the children…” She replied, her eyes fluttering softly. “M’sorry.”

“Sshh...it’s not your fault, alright? It’s not.” Percival soothed. “Did you see their faces?”

“They wore masks.” She murmured tiredly and Percival frowned. Grindelwald had never been known to wear a mask in a fight, and he wouldn’t have cared if Elaine had seen his face. He would have done it to just piss him off.

“Percy…”

“Yeah?”

“...I think the second half of the sleeping draught is starting...starting to take effect.” She slurred sleepily and he brushed her hair back.

“We’ll finish this in a little bit, okay? Mama and Papa are going to sit in here with you while I go back for the office for a short bit. I’ll be back by the time you wake up.”

She nodded sleepily, closing her eyes when he kissed her brow lightly. Finally he left the room and sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. Two people had attacked her. One had gone for the children and whisked them away, the other had attacked Elaine. They were both wearing masks to hide their identities. Grindelwald had a female partner...something he had not been known before for having.

Something wasn’t adding up.

He didn’t have much time to contemplate the inaccuracies as he turned the corner to the Security Department, and was almost tackled by Queenie, several aurors behind her.

“Queenie, wha-”

“You have to come Mister Graves!! You have to!”

“Queenie, slow down. What’s wrong?”

“It’s Newt!”

Percival felt his stomach drop to his feet and then he was being pulled by Queenie down the hall. His mind managed to catch up with his body, and soon he was hurrying alongside her and the aurors. It only took a few moments to reach the Security department’s center and he stared at his aurors who were all standing with their wands drawn, pointing at something in the middle of the room, spotting Tina and Theseus quickly in the throng of aurors, easily spotted by Pickett who was clinging to Tina chirping nervously.

“Ah, ze illustrious Director Graves.”

He finally caught who was in the middle of his team, lounging in a chair in a style that just screamed femme fatale, painted red lips stretched into a seductively chilling smile, one hand tied to the arm of the chair, amber eyes dancing with amusement, as though being surrounded by aurors with their wands pointed at her was a common thing. Margaux Bonnaire stared at him, leaning against a familiar peacock blue coat that had been draped over the back of the chair. She smirked as she watched his expression change and realization sank in.

“I believe we need to talk.”



Chapter Text

“I must say zis room is rather spooky. You Americans certainly like ze theatrics.” Margaux said as she sat in the chair across from Percival, staring at him with with half-lidded eyes, a smile etched on her face.

“I’m not in the mood Ms. Bonnaire.” Percival responded.

“Worried for your little lover, Monsieur?” She teased, her smile growing at how Percival stiffened. “He iz rather delectable, no? So innocent and so precious.”

“Innocent is not what I would describe as a quality for him.”

Margaux giggled, sweet as soured honey. Percival frowned.

“My, my...you certainly are snared by Monsieur Scamander.”

“Ms. Bonnaire, are you going to just waste my time or actually tell me what you’re doing here?” Percival asked coolly.

“Ooh...right to business, Monsieur.” She replied with a shudder, pushing her hand under the neckline of her dress. He pointedly stared at her face, the back of his neck burning, but unwilling to let her out of his sight, even in such an uncomfortable scene. She chuckled after a moment, withdrawing a note from her bodice.

“I wanted to deliver zis to you personally Director.” she purred, sliding the message across the table. “My employer’s request.”

“...That’s it?”

“It is az you say, Director. I am ze messenger. I get ze message, and I deliver. Simple.” Margaux replied with a coy smile.

“You never got your hands dirty?”

“Oh now why would I need to do zat?” She asked. “Men bend backwards for a simple kiss.”

“I feel as though you didn’t snatch Newt through that method.” Percival replied coolly. Margaux smiled brightly, pearly white teeth flashing. It felt as though a cornered animal was in front of him.

“He iz...a special case.” Margaux said, licking her upper lip and staring at him with. “My employer iz very cross with ‘im. Can’t keep his nose out of business. Throw a line out and Newt didn’ even think.”

“You lured him into a trap.”

“Not much of a lure. He was very easy to convince.” She replied, humming slightly. Percival was quiet, frowning. “Iz there anythin’ else, Director?”

Percival was quiet before standing.

“You will be placed in a holding cell while we contact the French government for your extradition.”

“Lovely. I’ve been wanting a return home trip.” She hummed lightly, a smile gracing her face, Percival’s expression darkening as she waved him away. “Happy hunting, Director.”

Percival barely managed to exit the interrogation room and close the door before Theseus was upon him.

“What did she say?”

“Theseus-”

“If she’s not saying anything, let me at her. I only need five damn minutes.”

“No.”

Theseus glared at Percival.

“What do you mean no?”

“You’re too emotional right now. It’s exactly what she wants, and there is no way I’m letting you in there.”

“Oh but you aren’t emotional right now?! Bloody hell, Percival! She kidnapped Newt!”

“I know that. But right now we need cool heads to even find him.”

“And I’m not cool-headed?”

“Not right now. In any case, he’s your brother. I can’t let you question her on basis of emotional relationship with the vi...with Newt.”

Theseus stared at Percival, his expression unreadable before he shoved past him, storming away from the interrogation room. Percival sighed, the papers crinkling in his hand as they tightened into a fist. He glanced down at the note, frowning at the contents.

‘A game of chess is won when one forgets to protect their queen.

Cease your investigation and perhaps your queen will be returned.’

A part of him was almost amused that whoever had written this had had the gall to make it seem like Newt was going to be some damsel that was in the way. Another part, a larger part was furious, demanding to storm back in there, tear every single memory out of that witch’s mind about Newt, to try and find anything about where he was. Even if it was hypocritical...even if it went against everything he stood for. It would be so easy to go back in there and-

“Director?” He was pulled out of his thoughts as he glanced to his right, spotting Marie standing there.

“Yes?”

“What should our next move be? She doesn’t seem to know where he is...or that she will even tell us if she does know.”

Percival was quiet, before shaking his head and turning towards the exit.

“Sir?”

“I have an idea on who to ask next.” Was his only response and Marie frowned, glancing back towards the door before entering the cell again to take Margaux into a holding cell.


Newt became aware he was lying in an awkward angle slowly, the pain becoming too unbearable to ignore after several moments. He opened one eye, then the other before sitting up, rubbing his head, hissing at the soreness. He looked around. He definitely wasn’t in a familiar place. The city sounds were absent, the air stale, and there was barely enough light for him to differentiate what was stone and what was earth. He was in a basement of some sort.

He stumbled as he stood, scratching his head, woozy.

“Where am I?” He muttered out loud, looking around. A basement? Why the hell would they leave him here alone in a-

“...Mister Scamander?”

He spun around, heart entering his throat as he spotted a small boy and he let out a choked cry, stumbling over and clasping the boy’s face through the bars.

“Credence…” He breathed in relief, brushing some dirt off of Credence’s tear stained cheeks. “Oh thank Merlin. What happened to you? Where’s Rosie?”

“I...I don’t know.” Credence sniffled. “I heard Missus Elaine yelling and then this lady came in and...and…I’ve been here. Is Missus Elaine okay?”
Newt hesitated for a moment.

“She’s safe.”

“I’m sorry. I didn’t-”

“No, no...Credence, look at me. This isn’t your fault.” Newt promised, shaking his head. “Alright? This isn’t-”

He sensed it before he heard it, and he ducked as a spell flew inches from where his head had been. He turned to see a shadowed figure standing at the stairwell entrance. He cursed inwardly. There wasn’t a whole lot of a room to maneuver and he didn’t have his wand.

“Mister Scamander!!”

“Credence, stay down!”

He dodged another spell, green splashing against the wall, fizzling slightly next to Credence’s cage. Credence yelped in panic and the figure’s attention returned to him. He aimed his wand at the cage, even as Credence scampered to the farthest corner.

“No!!” Newt yelled.

His feet moved, time seemed to slowly as he jumped in front of the cage. Red filled his vision and burning pain sliced through him, ears ringing. The next moment he could think, he could hear Credence calling out to him, yelling for him as a shadow stood over him, a hand reaching out for him.

“Mister Scamander!! MISTER SCAMANDER!!”

Newt struggled to get away from the shadow, trying to get back to where Credence was, movement sluggish, gasping when the man kicked him hard in the stomach, stopping his struggles and clutching his abdomen.

“MA!!!”

Newt’s heart snapped in two as he stared stunned at Credence’s frightened expression, clinging to the bars of his cage as he reached for Newt. How many times had he hoped that Credence would call him something else...and now, of all the times...why did it have to be now?

“I’m alright. Everything will be alright…” He managed to wheeze, trying to give a reassuring smile.

“Ma!” Credence wailed again, sobbing loudly as the man above Newt pointed his wand down at him.

“I believe a conversation is in order Monsieur Scamander.”

Newt frowned, refusing to flinch. The man above him sighed, before he returned his wand’s aim at the sobbing boy. Newt froze, eyes wide and the man above him smiled.

“Now then...that conversation, Monsieur?”

Gritting his teeth, he nodded and the man grinned.

“Excellent.”


Theseus was quiet.

It was rather off putting if Tina was being honest. She had gotten used to his rambling dialogue, especially with Newt, because the two just would argue about everything. She never heard heat behind the words, only sarcasm. It was their relationship, their way to tell each other they cared about them. And that didn’t mention the general noise of the case that was usual, that now lay silent next to her, as though the creatures themselves were in mourning.

There was nothing but silence.

“...can’t believe this.” Tina heard as Erasmus and Silvester entered the cubicle area.

“I know. I mean...Where would this even be tried?” Erasmus asked, frowning. “A French witch attacking a British wizard on American soil? That’s three nations in one crime.”

“America obviously.” Silvester replied and Tina glanced nervously at Theseus who had stiffened.

“Yeah, except that French witch has about a dozen warrants for her arrest in France, of which are a lot more-”

“More what?” Theseus snapped and the group jumped, looking over and suddenly went silent. “Important? Necessary? Interesting? What were you going to finish with? Go on, finish what you were going to say.”

Erasmus went silent, looking away.

“Theseus…” Tina offered softly, pulling at his arm and he stumbled away, following her. She turned when they were finally alone.

“Theseus, look at me.” She cooed softly, pressing a hand to his cheek. He looked at her, eyes watery. “Erasmus didn’t mean it like that.”

“He thinks Margaux’s crimes in other countries are worse than the fact she lured Newt, my baby brother, into a trap and helped him be taken. And I’m supposed to be silent?!”

“No, but yelling at them won’t make things better. Theseus…” she said, pausing to make sure he looked at her, “I know right now, you’re scared for Newt. I am too. We all are worried about him. But we can’t go around snapping at everyone because of that. It won’t help find Newt.”

“What am I supposed to do then?!”

“Swallow that anger down for the moment so you can use it to take out on who has him right now, and focus on finding him.” Tina said gently. “It’s clear that whoever snatched Newt did so because they found him an excellent shield against you or Graves. Margaux wouldn’t have come here to taunt us about having Newt. She’d just deal with him.”

Theseus grimaced.

“You have a point.”

“So let’s look at what we have, and see if we can find anything.” Tina said with determination. Theseus sighed.

“I guess that date will have to be postponed.”

Tina smiled, and kissed his cheek.

“Let’s go.”

He nodded and followed her out, clutching her hand so tightly, she frowned.

“Let’s look at those letters Rosie’s parents had had in their apartment. Maybe there’s some clues about it.”

“You think it’s connected?”

“It’s a lead you can check. We were a bit preoccupied and the department has been crazy lately. It can’t hurt.” Tina said and Theseus sighed.

“Yeah. Let’s go.”

“Everything will be alright, Theseus.” Tina promised and Theseus nodded. And she hoped against hope that the promise didn’t turn out to be a lie.


“You’ll have to forgive me, Monsieur, but I’ve heard you’re known for escapes. And I’d much rather you stay where you are.”

Newt grimaced, as he felt the bindings wrapped tightly around his wrists, tied to the chair legs and ending with securing his ankles to the other legs of the chair. He remained silent for a few moments, watching the man as he felt wards wash over him. He supposed there was no reason to be polite to his kidnapper in this instance.

“What does Grindelwald want with those children?”

The man glanced at him.

“Grindelwald? My Lord is rather unaware of this establishment. He sent us here to aid followers here. What I do for my own vocation is not really his business.”

Newt stared, looking at the man blankly, confusion warring with him. Why would Grindelwald not be involved in this kidnapping plot? He had every reason-

Newt’s frown grew.

Reason. It had been the one thing none of the aurors on the case could figure out. Why would Grindelwald steal children? What the purpose had been.

Newt swallowed the knot growing in his throat.

“...you mean to tell me-”

The words died in his throat when he heard wailing echoing closer to him, and the stairs creaked as someone made their way down. The man turned, looking at the figure coming around the corner. Newt’s heartbeat quickened as a waifish looking woman walked to the man, holding Rosalind in her arms.

“Leo, what are you doing?”

“Nothing, Cher.”

“Rosie...let Rosie go!” Newt snapped, struggling to free himself. ‘Leo’ looked back at him.

“The baby isn’t your concern anymore, Mr. Scamander.”

“Please! Let her and Credence go!”

“Who is…ah…” Leo said rolling his eyes “That must be the brat’s name.”

“You can keep me here all you want, but-”

“You aren’t in a position to be making demands.”

“They can’t stay here! You’re not-”

“Oh my, darling petite…” The woman cooed as Rosie’s screams grew louder, “Maman’s here. Maman will protect you…”

Newt felt his throat close up at the woman’s expression as she began to hum an off tune lullaby. It was like he hadn’t said a word in her eyes, like he had become mute.

“Aceline, I told you to not come down here.”

“I heard yelling and I was worried, Leo…and the baby-”

“Go upstairs, and deal with her, then. If you can’t get her quiet, then I’ll help once I’m done here.”

“...Yes, Leo.”

“No!! Don’t hurt them!!” Newt begged. “They’re children!!”

Leo seemed to ignore him, watching as the woman went back up the stairs, taking the wailing child with her, shushing her with each step.

“No!!”

“Silence, Monsieur Scamander.”

“What are you going to do to them?!”

“Monsieur Scamander, if you aren’t going to cooperate, I’m afraid things will become rather unpleasant. I’d rather not have to have a repeat of my encounter with Mademoiselle Graves, but if circumstances present itself…”

“...you...you’re the one that attacked Elaine.” Newt finally whispered.

“An unfortunate incident. She was uncooperative, and crude.”

“You tortured her!!”

“She refused to aid me. Alas, due to her stubbornness, I had to acquire other means of negotiation. I, at first, thought the boy would be useful, but without that obscurus in him, he’s of little use to Grindelwald. Now you…however...you revealed Grindelwald here in the States, revealed his plans and sent him to prison temporarily. You’ll be a wonderful trade to get Grindelwald off my back. So, unfortunately, Monsieur Scamander you’ll have to be that unfortunate lamb sent to the slaughterhouse.”

“...Let the children go, and I’ll go with you willingly.”

“See Mr. Scamander, you are not in ze position to negotiate.” Leo looked at him coolly, pointing his wand at Newt’s face. “In any case, I do not like to repeat myself. They’re mine now, Monsieur. Scamander. They are not your concern.”

“They’re children you snatched from their homes! They aren’t yours! They have families that are worried sick over them, you utter-”

“Crucio!”

A red glow reflected in the room and Newt’s scream echoed through the basement as the woman continued to go up the stairs, the yell breaking off as the woman slowly closed the door, with a solid click. She looked blankly at the whimpering Rosie, who squirmed in her blanket.

“Don’t worry mon petit. Maman is ‘ere. Maman will protect you from ze bad men.” She whispered and continued down the hall.

“Maman will always protect her petit bébé.”


“I’m just relieved she woke up.” Tristan said as he followed Sebille into the hospital.

“Please, she’s a Graves...being stubborn is engrained in her genes.” Sebille replied with a reassuring smile, “still, we should probably find where Percival and-”

Sebille paused as they spotted a figure walk briskly out of their sister’s room. Tristan glanced over at her.

“Seb?”

She turned, following the figure, Tristan hurrying after her, confusion prominent on his face.

“Tristan?” He heard his mother call out and glanced back to see his parents slowing as they were about to enter Elaine’s room.

“We’ll be right back!” He called out to his parents, hurrying after Sebille.

“Hey!! Healer!! Stop!”

Tristan stared at his sister. That was her auror voice. A voice he hadn’t heard in years.

“Sebille, what are you doing?”

The healer stopped on the stairwell, glancing up at them. He seemed like any healer here, and it’s not like they knew every healer here. So why was Sebille being like this?

“Can I help you?”

“Who are you?”

“Healer Barton. I work down in magical maladies and curses.”

“And you were in my sister’s room because…?”

“Just to check on her. She and I were friends during training. Elli was practically family, so I was concerned for her.”

Sebille’s expression darkened as she slowly pulled out her wand.

“Wrong answer, ‘Healer Barton’.”

“Seb, what the he-”

“How do you know a nickname that only my brother Percival uses for Elaine?”

There was silence for a moment as the two Graves siblings stared at the Healer. Barton then sighed and it felt as though cold air had begun to suffocate the stairwell. Slowly dark hair began to wane, replaced by fine blond strands and crystal blue eyes changed to one grey and one dark.

Tristan yelped as Sebille stiffened.

“Oh Mrs. Fontaine, I always knew you would have been trouble.”

“Sebille, Tristan? Ma and Pa said you went this w-”

The two siblings turned to see Percival opening the door to the stairwell, freezing as he spotted the wizard in front of his older sister and younger brother. A grin stretched across Grindelwald’s face and he grabbed Sebille and Tristan by the wrists and with a deafening pop, disapparated away with them.

“NO!”

Instinct alone taking over, Percival apparated after them, following the apparition trail, stumbling as he landed on a roof in downtown. The air stank of the pier and he gritted his teeth, panic setting in.

“Sebille! Tristan!!” He called out, trying to get a lock on where they were.

A pained groan answered him and he spun around spotting a pair of feet behind some crates.

“Tristan!!”

He raced to his younger brother, helping him sit up as the younger male hissed, clutching his side.

“Just splinched a little. M’fine.” Tristan forced out, looking at Percival desperately. “Go find Seb. She’s fighting him.”

An explosion echoed further away, and Percival nodded before he stood and rushed towards the sounds. Barely ducking as a large crate flew past him, he spotted his sister sliding backwards, barely managing to not fall off the pier and she dodged a spell, throwing a protective spell up as an acid green spell splashed against it, the splatter melting the wood around her. Her arm was stained with blood, one sleeve already missing and she smeared her lipstick as she wiped her mouth. Sebille’s eyes were dark with anger and the promise of vengeance. Grindelwald seemed almost amused.

“Incendio!!” She snapped, throwing the fire like a whip only for Grindelwald to dodge it with ease. He spun his wand, eyes alight with a sadistic glee. Percival’s heart dropped, recognizing the stance.

“Raz-”

“NO!!!”

He barely heard the rest of the spell as shoved his sister the side, barely managing to dodge the spell that had left him without an arm and a leg himself as it sliced through a nearby wall, wood and dust flying in every direction. He looked up, glaring as he scrambled up, giving chase after the Dark Wizard.

“You son of a bitch!!”

“Language, Percival. I believe we went over this multiple times when you were under my care.” Grindelwald taunted, earning another curse as a response.

“I’m doing fine, Percival.” Sebille hissed, right behind Percival.

“I don’t care, Seb!”

“Mercy Lewis, Percival, I-”

“Ah, sibling love. How quaint. Makes me glad to be an only child!” Grindelwald snapped, flinging another spell towards the siblings, the pair dodging. Tristan managed to arrive, throwing another spell spiraling at the Grindelwald. The older man laughed. Percival swung a spell, chasing after Grindelwald, paying little heed to his siblings.

“Grindelwald!!”

“Round two, Percival? I’m flattered.”

Grindelwald blocked a spell, the red curse splashing against a nearby sign, destroying it. Percival slid around a corner, seeing a bright light shooting towards it, and felt triumph as the spell bounced off the wood of his leg.

“Intriguing.” Grindelwald remarked. “I suspect there are runes embedded in it. Am I right?”

Percival didn’t answer, refusing to give the man that had taken so much from him a response, instead replied with a curse that shrieked towards Grindelwald, who blocked it with ease. A flick of the wrist and several crates went flying, the contents ejecting out, scattering around the dock, splashing and sinking into the water below.
Percival glanced to the right, and frowned before throwing spell after spell at Grindelwald, who dodged and blocked each spell. Grindelwald spun a spell that careened into Percival, sending the auror flying. The Dark Wizard sighed, meandering over to Percival who struggled to sit up.

“That’s it? Rather disappointing, Percival. It appears I broke you much more than I thought if this the state of your duelling skills. Our first fight was much longer.” Grindelwald remarked and Percival glared.

“Who says I was fighting? I was stalling.” The Auror snapped and he had the satisfaction of seeing surprise on the Dark Wizard’s face for a split second before there was a familiar popping sound and the Dark Wizard turned only to meet Sebille’s fist smashing into him.

He flew backwards, crashing into a brick wall. He staggered forward and looked up, barely managing to dodge Sebille as she rushed at him, throwing another punch, causing brick and dust to shoot in every direction. Grindelwald wiped his mouth, looking at the siblings and though there was a smirk on his face, his eyes were dark with anger.

“It appears I should have killed you when I had the chance, Mrs. Fontaine.”

“Like you did with Dorin Borodin and Catin Petran?” Sebille asked as she shook her hand, the spell wrapped around it dissipating. Grindelwald blinked several times. “You had the chance to take them out before they revealed plans with the children?”

A look passed over Grindelwald’s face, one Percival had never seen before, startling him. He frowned, confusion warring with him. He was missing something. Something important.

“What do you want with those children, Gellert?” He called out. “I never took you as a kidnapper. Even if it is to twist their ideals before they know better.”

Silence answered him, Grindelwald staring at him with a neutral expression.

“You’ll have to forgive me, but I do not have to answer to the likes of you. But you have answered some questions I have had. And for that, I suppose I will spare your life. For now.” The Dark Wizard said, pointing his wand at them.

“Wait-”

A bright flash and the roar of an explosion had him grabbing his siblings and pushing them away, covering them as the dock exploded in a shower of water, wood, and stone. When they turned back all that was left was a gaping hole where the man stood. Sebille collapsed onto the ground with a sigh, followed by Tristan.

“...You know. I hate the docks. They can go burn in hell.” Sebille groused and Tristan huffed in agreement. Percival let out a snort that turned into a groan as popping sounds were heard.

This was going to be a long day.

Chapter Text

After taking down statements and instructing his aurors what to do, Percival’s head was swimming. So he was sure that that was why he had come up with the idea of just apparating to the hospital with both siblings in tow. In hindsight, it probably wasn’t the best of ideas and he probably would be having to apologize to his mother as she looked about ready to faint as she spotted her three eldest children. Tina was staying smartly out of the way, quiet and trying to make herself as invisible as possible.

“Mama, I’m fine.” He said as his mother flitted nervously between all four children.

“Don’t you tell me that. I come to visit one, and now all four of you are injured.”

“Tristan is worse.”

“Thanks Percival.” Tristan muttered as their mother all but flew to his side.

“So Grindelwald didn’t know about the missing children. His reaction said it all.” Sebille interjected, wincing as the healing ointment began to take effect. “He didn’t have a clue what you were talking about.”

“He could have been lying.”

“And not torment Percival for not finding them or figuring it out sooner?” Sebille asked, looking apologetically at Percival, who shook his head.

“No, I agree. He’s a good actor, but there was no acting that time.”

“So...that’s what he wanted…” Elaine muttered absently, scratching her head, instantly regretting it and winced.

“Wanted?”

Elaine gestured to the vial that had been found near the brick wall now sitting on the nearby table and handed over to Percival.

“These are my memories from the night I was attacked.”

“You’re sure?” Percival stated.

“Mhm. That’s the only blank spot in my memory. I was hit in the head but not badly enough. And I don’t remember any of it. This has to be what he took. He was probably curious about why I was here in the first place.”

Percival felt his jaw twitch in anger, his mood darkening at the thought of Grindelwald being close enough to take her memory from her. He had touched her, while she was alone and defenseless. He-

“I told the auror about it.”

“Auror?” Percival interrupted, snapping back into the conversation.

“Mhm a little while ago while we were waiting for you three to come back...I can’t recall his name,” Elaine trailed off thinking about it, “the one who was flirting with me a few weeks back.”

“…Elaine, I hadn’t sent anyone here. I didn’t have the time.” Percival began, frowning.

“Oh I remember.” Alma said, clicking her tongue. “He came in just after you left to go find Sebille and Tristan. Tall...muscular. Dark hair. He carried himself rather well.”

It took a few moments before it was like he had been hit by a ton of bricks, and he yanked the note back out, read it for another second before cursing.

“Percival? What the hell is-”

“I knew it!”

“Knew? Knew what?”

“I recognize the handwriting of the note Margaux sent me about Newt.” Percival muttered.

“Really??” Tristan asked incredulously

“Of course I do, I had to read his reports over and over again until he got them right. Why wouldn’t I know his damn handwriting?”

“Wait...are you…” Tina began, glancing at the man on the photo Percival was summoning, and her eyes widened.

“Elli, was this the man that came into your room?” Percival asked showing the photo to his younger sister. Elaine glanced at it before nodding,

“Mhm. He was just as sleazy as he was before….I don’t think he was expecting Mama and Papa to be here though. He just asked a few questions and hurried out.”

“Dawson? You think Dawson snatched Newt with Margaux?”

“Or he knows who did. Come on.”

“Yes sir!” Tina said, hurrying after Percival who paused for a moment and looked back at his family.

“I’ll be back in a little bit. Promise.”

Tristan frowned and looked at their family.

“...did I miss something?” Tristan asked and their mother sighed heavily.

“At this point in my life, I’ve learned to not try and understand anything you four do.”

“Well that’s-hey!!”


Tina hurried after Percival as they walked briskly through the MACUSA building.

“Tina! Percy!”

They paused as Theseus ran up to them. He faltered however at their expressions.

“Is everything alright??”

“No, Grindelwald is here now.” Tina replied, and Theseus gaped.

“What?! Since when?”

“A few hours ago at best. The bastard tried to steal some Elaine’s memories. My siblings and I fought him, and the city’s been warded to ensure he can’t apparate away, but…”

“Dammit...we don’t have a lot of time then.”

“What are you talking about??”

“I think I found out why Dorin and Catin were killed. And who might have done it.” He exclaimed.

“Really?”

“Yeah. I was curious because some of the letters are addressed to their parents.”

“So?”

“Well Dorin’s parents are dead and Catin was estranged from her parents, remember? Why send messages to them? So after a few spells, I realized they had used it as a cover. See?”

He held out the letter, the two other aurors looking at it. Sure enough the words were different now, and letter was addressed to Grindelwald.

“Nicely done, Seus.” Percival muttered as he read through the letter, pausing at the sentence.

‘Progress is continuing smoothly, and the bomb should be ready to use for New Years, My Lord. All is well.’

“So that was the plan...there are enough parties during that night that every speakeasy would be filled.” Tina muttered. “Mass casualty and mass hysteria would be everywhere.”

“And it would allow wizards and witches that followed Grindelwald to make use of the chaos.” Theseus finished, before shaking his head, hands on his hips. “But it didn’t happen. Someone killed Catin and Dorin before they could complete it. Grindelwald would have noticed the lack of news in America, so that explains why he’s here. He’s probably wondering what the hold up was.” Theseus muttered but Percival frowned at the rest of the words.

‘However, we implore you, Lord Grindelwald, to speak to Rais. To this date, we have seen another child, totaling to three. He claims they were given to him, but we have growing doubts that is the case, especially as the boy doesn’t even know his name. We’ve warned him multiple times, that this does not follow your doctrines or beliefs, but he insists it will be bettering the wizarding world. His interests have grown more and more perverted with each passing day from the mission.’

“...This Rais fellow is insane.”

“Or a bloody moron. Grindelwald doesn’t take to people doing things behind his back very well.” Theseus replied.

“He was smart enough to silence the only witnesses to his activities.” Percival reminded him.

“But Grindelwald has an advantage of knowing who’s here and who isn’t.” Theseus replied, dragging a hand through his hair. “Which means he might know who has Newt. We don’t-”

“We have an advantage too.” Percival replied.

“We do?”

“Collins!”

“Sir?”

“I need you to find Dawson.” Percival said. “Take him down to the Interrogation rooms.”

“Yes Sir.” Collins called out, and hurried away. Theseus stared at Percival, eyes wide.

“You think it was one of your own men?”

“I know it was one of them.”

Percival walked quickly down the hall, a steely look on his face, hands curled into fists.

“And heaven help him, because he pissed off the wrong man.”


If Percival Graves had anything going for him, it was that he had a wonderful poker face. It had come in handy during school, and it came in handy now if he ever played cards with anyone. Right now, it hid his anger incredibly well. Because as he sat across from Dawson, he yearned to strangle him, but stayed seated, face impassive. But Dawson was, if nothing else, observant. He probably knew this.

And Dawson was loving it.

“Why so interested in asking me for the location of the youngest Scamander, Director?” Dawson said pleasantly. “Surely you don’t think I had anything to do with his...disappearance.”

“Actually Dawson. Yes. You were connected to the kidnapping of Newton Scamander.”

“Oh? How so?”

“Simple. Your handwriting.”

Dawson blinked and then snorted.

“Pulling at straws now are we? I’m not a kidnapper. Just because I insulted your lover-”

“Did you really think I wouldn’t recognize your handwriting, Dawson? Or did you assume I don’t talk to my brother and sisters?”

Dawson froze for a moment, before that easy going smile returned, though it was guarded now..

“I suggest you start talking.” Percival said.

“It’s nothing you haven’t heard yet, Graves. Business is business. And I’m a businessman now. What happened or happens to Scamander is not my problem.”

“You-” Tina began to hiss, but stopped at a look from Percival. She inhaled and exhaled slowly through her nose, glaring at Dawson. “Where did you take him to?”

Dawson chuckled, before shaking his head.

“Still have difficulty listening, hm? I didn’t take him, and even if I did, it’d be a breach in customer confidentiality to tell you anything, Goldstein. You can’t expect me to just give names. Think of my reputation if word got out that I snitched to-”

Percival slammed his hands down on the table, the loud bang startling everyone, and loomed over Dawson, hands flat on the metal table, his expression twisted with anger.

“You’ve been stealing children and giving them to a monster for the sole factor of profit. One of them is dead. If I were you, I’d be more worried about being sentenced than your reputation, Dawson.”

“Now, just wait a second, I never said I was involved with those missing kids!” Dawson yelled.

“Your note was warning me to end my investigation, Dawson!!” Percival said.

“I was just the messenger! I needed to get money some-”

“You expect me to believe you wrote that note and aren’t involved?! Most of those in court have their own children, and I’m sure they’d be happy to oblige a heavy sentence when we find out how many children you’ve snatched,” Percival snapped, “and that’s not even thinking what could happen to you when those in the cells find out what you were arrested for. I know for a fact criminals see people like you who involve children in their crimes as the lowest on that totem pole. Those people don’t last long. And I will tell them all what you were involved in if you don’t shut up and tell us what you know!” he growled. Dawson shrank in his chair, horror painted across his face. “Am I understood?”

Dawson whimpered something that might have been a “yes”, his wrists tugging at the invisible restraints under the table in a desperate attempt to put some distance between him and Percival.

“Now,” Percival continued in a low voice, “I’m going to tell you what’s going to happen. First, you are going to tell me every single child you snatched to past and present,”

“But I didn’t-”

“Then you tell us who the hell did and where those who paid you to write the note are, and you better pray that if the children are there, none of them have so much as a hair out of place, because so help me, if I find any of those children abused, it will be you I’ll go after. Understood?” When Dawson didn’t answer, he leaned farther across the table, fingers curling on the smooth metal. “Am I understood? ”

“Yes!” Dawson swallowed roughly. “Yes, I understand!”

“Take him down to the cells, Goldstein, and get that information out of him. The moment he gives you the names, all of the names, report back to me.”

“Yes Sir.”

Percival continued walking down the hall, slowing when he spotted his brother.

“Tristan?”

“Yeah, I know, I’m injured. But the healer’s said I was free to go.”

“And you came here because…?”

“Because Elaine wanted me to give you this.”

Percival looked at his brother as he handed him a small vial and his stomach squirmed.

“Tristan-”

“I know that you don’t want to see it. But Elaine said that you needed to...if anything, to help identify who attacked her and kidnapped Credence and Rosie.”
Percival was quiet, grip tightening on the vial, before nodding. He felt as though his walk to his office slowed, weights now on his legs.

Because what Tristan had said made sense...but still…

“Dammit all.” He hissed as he closed his door, looking at the vial, before sighing and with a swish of his wand, the pensieve slid out into his office. Swallowing he poured the memory, watching the shimmer as it mixed with the water. He bent down and pressed his face into it.

And suddenly he was in Elaine’s apartment, the way it had been days before, destroyed, scorch marks smoldering on the walls. He spotted Elaine struggling against a man, trying to kick him as he bound her hands.

“Where is Credence and Rosalind? What have you-”

“They aren’t your concern at the moment, Mademoiselle Graves.” The man said in a heavy French accent, dragging her into a chair, in front of it a plate of food. “Go on. Eat. You must be hungry.”

Percival watched as Elaine glanced at the plate, frowning and looking back at the man suspiciously. He was still for a moment, before lifting and removing his mask.

He wasn’t sure what he had been expecting.

Not this man though.

He didn’t recognize him from any of his files.

Dark hair pulled back in a ponytail, a mustache and goatee covering the lower half of his face, and chilling brown eyes that stared at his little sister.

“It’s not poisoned. Eat.”

“I’d prefer not to.”

She flinched as the man embedded his knife in the wood table, his eyes a dangerous sheen and Percival’s heart jumped to his throat.

“Don’t make zis difficult, Mademoiselle Graves. Eat.”

Slowly she reached for a fork with her non-dominant, watching the man. After a few minutes of apparently trying to get the silverware to work, she finally maneuvered the fork into the appropriate place in her hand. He watched her, his gaze boring into her as she stabbed a carrot and managed to get it into her mouth. She gave one defiant crunch as though to show him, and he withdrew the knife from the table, continuing to eat. Percival watched as Elaine kept staring at the man, before looking at her plate.

“So what do you know about The Deathly Hallows?”

“They’re a plot device in the Tale of Three Brothers, nothing more.”

“Now, don’t be like that...I know you met Grindelwald while he was imprisoned here.”

His sister paused, staring at the table, fork still in hand.

“Your point?”

“He’s searching for them. He found one already.”

“Supposedly. Last time I was in the same room as him he didn’t have a wand, and he had been using my brother’s prior. No proof that he has the Elder Wand.”
Percival wanted to let out a laugh as Elaine looked at the man defiantly. A Graves to the bone it seemed, and the man sighed, almost in exasperation.

“Then tell me this, Empath. What do you know or sense of the Hallows?”

“What I know about the Hallows is that I have no desire to search for them.”

“You fear them.”

“It has nothing to do with fear. I just don’t see the point of them.”

“You can become the Master of Death wit’ them.”

“Everyone dies eventually. What we do with our life and what we’re known for after our deaths is our own choice.” Elaine glanced at him, and it was a look that Percival knew of hers. His heart crawled up to his throat.

“All you need to do is tell me where one of ze other ones are. You’re an empath.”

“Clearly you don’t understand the limited abilities of an empath.”

“The Resurrection Stone, or Thee Cloak of Invisibilité. Just find one, and you’ll be let go.”

“...Tell me. Is your desire to find one of the Hallows because you want to be helpful for Grindelwald, or leverage because he didn’t give you permission to start snatching children here and you fear his reaction when he finds out?”

The Frenchman stood abruptly and stormed over to her. The smack echoed in the room and Percival felt anger flood his gut as his sister’s head whipped to the side, only to be pulled back as he gripped her cheeks.

“You petite salope…”

“Grindelwald has no idea of your tastes...does he? And you know that he’s a lot of things. He’s not above using children for a purpose, but he is not interested in what you use children for... You fear his reaction, don’t you?”

“Tais-toi!”

Elaine blinked and Percival saw the Frenchman’s mistake. He was holding her for far too long. And he knew what that meant.

“Or is it that you’re more scared that your mother is going to find out and sees you as the disappointment that you a-”

The next swing that collided with her sent her to the ground and before she could even sit up, a solid kick to her gut made her wheeze in pain.
He stumbled backwards, bile growing in the back of his throat.

No more. He couldn’t watch this anymore.

He pulled away from the pensieve, struggling to control his stomach, fingers curling against the stone.

“Sir! Sir, we got a name!”

Percival looked over at the door and steeled his expression as Tina hurriedly knocked on the door and opened it a moment later.

“Dawson squealed?”

“Yes Sir.” Kimbley added, a frown on his face. “Like the pig he is.”

“Assemble a team. We need to go. Now.”


Leonides de Rais and his sister Aceline were the names that was given to Tina and other aurors from Dawson. One look at the man’s photo was all Percival needed to know that he was the one in Elaine’s memories. Leonides, apparently, was a rather wealthy French wizard who had two sides of himself. One side was the side he showed the most, a wealthy French Wizard from one of the Sacred 6 that survived in France. A philanthropist as far as the Magical Association Republic of France had been concerned, but behind closed doors, his intentions were very different. He was a follower of Grindelwald, and apparently, if Percival’s theory was correct, had some other secrets even darker than that, having decided to follow in his ancestor's footsteps. All Dawson knew was where the Rais’s estate was, he didn’t know if the children or there or even where the children would be, and the aurors reckoned he hadn’t much cared if they were there. How Dawson managed to work with a man that kidnapped and possibly abused children was a mystery to Percival, and it wasn’t one he wanted to delve too deeply in.

Newt’s wand was heavy inside Percival’s pocket, and he swallowed as he stalked towards the house. He could feel wards wrapping around them, trying to make them leave. It took a few swishes of their wands and the wards fell apart. Still, Percival frowned. They weren’t strong ones, but it would be enough to warn the person inside of their arrival.

A wordless gesture and the aurors split into their groups, and he saw in his peripherals Tina and Theseus heading up the stairs. He stalked down the stairs, the natural light of the world above disappearing into the shadows of the basement. The unease began to permeate in his skin, the walls beginning to close around him. He could almost feel the unwanted touch, unable to move away from him, staring at him, split eyes amused by his fear. By his panic. He peered into a room, and his heart dropped, the unwanted memories vanishing in an instant.

“NEWT?!”

Percival was cradling Newt’s head before he really even realized he had moved,his heart skipping at sight of bruises, and gently worked the gag out of the British man’s mouth, easing the fabric away from the dried blood that had practically glued it there. He began to cover the litany of healing spells he had memorized for when he was on solo missions. Always be prepared to use them, his trainer had told him, and he had. But Merlin’s beard, he never thought he’d have to use them on his...his...

“...val…?”

“Newt? Oh thank God!” Percival said as he looked back at New, the younger Scamander’s eyes half-lidded, confusion evident on his tired, beaten face. “Stay with me, alright?” He ordered, standing slightly to lean over and began to work on the bindings, pausing for a moment as Newt’s head pressed into his chest.

“...Percival…?”

“It’s me. I promise you, it’s me.” Percival forced out, clearing his throat, eyes burning. He could feel Newt shivering slightly, the tremors most assuredly not from a chill, Percival realized grimly.

“Percy...the children...where…”

“I’ll find them.” He promised, finally finishing the knot and moved back. “But first I need to check on you.”

“M’fine.” Newt said, struggling to stand as Percival let him lean on him.

“But you aren’t.”

“I’ll be fine then.” Newt said a bit stronger, stumbling forward, only to be stopped by Percival.

“You’re injured, Newt.”

“That’s just a bloody excuse. You can’t just-”

The rant was cut off as Percival weaved his hand into Newt’s hair, the other yanking him down by the neck, kissing him hard and Newt relented. After a few moments, the older man pulled away.

“Stay away from this. You’re a victim in this too-”

“I can’t. I can’t stand by and wait here thinking about who might be hurting them. It will drive me mad, Percy.”

Percival frowned, before finally nodding, pulling out Newt’s wand from his pocket.

“Do not split off from me, alright? Unless your brother shows up.” He amended and Newt nodded. The two set off down the hall. This place was larger than Percival had expected, and he wondered how many extension charms were in place.

“Well, well. Visitors. Rather rude ones az well.” A man with a thick french accent and the two men stumbled to a stop and looked up as a man, wearing expensive robes leaned against the stair railing with an ease that he either didn’t know what was going on or knew and was humoring them.

“Leonides de Rais, I presume.” Percival reasoned.

“Ze very one...I don’t suppose you could tell me why I ‘ave American aurors roaming around my estate, breaking down doors?.”

“Dawson sold you out Leonides.” Percival replied coolly. “We know all about your...escapades.”

“Escapades?” He almost sounded insulted, glaring at Percival. “No, no Monsieur. That is far from the truth. I’m giving them new meaning and purpose.”

The French wizard dodged a spell thrown by Newt and looked at the tall man annoyed.

“Where’s Rosalind, Credence, and the other children?!”

“Are we really going to go through this conversation again, Monsieur Scamander?” Leonides asked, almost annoyed. “They are under my care now.”

“You stole them!!!”

“Stole? I don’t steal, Monsieur.” Leonides commented and if looks could kill, Leonides probably would have been struck dead by both men. And then Leonides laughed. “I suppose I can humor you, though. She is with my sister, bonding. Just like all good mothers do with their ‘babies’. The boy well...I don’t quite care about that one. Broken toys have no use for me…” he glanced at Percival, before his attention returned to Newt, “then again, you might be used to broken toys.”

Percival barely had enough time to grab Newt as the younger man tried to tackle the Frenchman, who smirked.

“Now you have your answers, I’d like for you to leave now.”

“You’ve kidnapped children, attacked wizarding folk, and that’s not adding the murder and attempted murder charges, Leonides.” Percival replied. “You aren’t leaving here out of handcuffs.”

Leonides sighed, as though he had merely scolded him for stealing a cookie out of the cookie jar.

“There is no need for that.”

“You’re going to come willingly?”

The man was silent for a moment, as though regarding the option. Newt suddenly shoved Percival away, dodging a spell that the man suddenly flung towards them.

“Why you lousy-!” Percival snarled, swinging his wand up and fire roared towards the French Wizard. Fluidly, as though dancing a waltz, Leonides dodged it, jumping away and vanishing down the hall.

Both men gave chase, dodging and blocking Leonides’s attacks, throwing spells of their own back.

“Incarcerous!!!”

Newt’s voice echoed and ropes wrapped around the frenchman, who slammed into the ground with a grunt. Percival slammed his foot on the Frenchman’s back, stopping his struggles.

“Now that was fun, but it’s time to answer our questions.”

“I doubt bâtards like you would understand my genius.”

“Oh you’d be surprised. You were taking children and going to transport them back to France,” Percival said coolly, looking at the bound Frenchman, who glared at him, “for whatever you and your...friends were going to do to them. But Dorin and Catin got in the way, didn’t they? The two of them were a lot of things, and they could condone a lot of what Grindelwald did, claiming that it’s for the better good, but they couldn’t condone kidnapping children for your sick reasons.”

Leonides was silent, but his glare was enough proof that Percival had hit the mark.

“So who did they threaten to tell? The authorities? Grindelwald?” Percival continued. “Which one was more frightening to you?”

“....wretched bâtards.” Leonides humphed. “They came to me...said I needed to stop, how this wasn’t right. Imagine that,” Leonides quipped with a chuckle, “they ‘ad no problems with murder, but they couldn’t stay out of my family business. Said that they couldn’t feel comfortable with zeir little puny brat around me. Said zey were going to report to Grindelwald...tell ‘im what I had been doing under ‘is cause if I didn’t stop.”

“And Grindelwald is not someone to cross with, even if you’re on his side.” Percival finished, glancing at Newt. “So you decided to kill them. Why leave their daughter alive?”

Leonides burst out laughing.

“I had no desire to keep the brat alive,” Leonides said coolly “but my Aceline wanted her to live. But what would I say to Grindelwald if he spotted me with ze runt? She ‘as no desirable features that would make my family name proud that I could say she was my flesh and blood.”

“So you left her in a tree near her parents bodies.” Percival finished. “Let her die out there, you wouldn’t dirty yourself by using the Killing Curse on a defenseless baby, and if Aceline checked it would only show two times the curse was used. She would think that her parents killed her and be none the wiser then, and better, Grindelwald wouldn’t even know it was you. He’d think it was someone from the MACUSA.”

“Was a wonderfully simple plan. But c'est la vie, Scamander over there ‘ad to ruin it and brought her back to the city, and Aceline spotted her in some bakery, and just knew who she was. She wouldn’t let up, over and over again…‘our baby, Leo’…’she can’t be ‘appy with them, Leo’, ‘oh please Leo’. It got so annoying.”

“Where are they?? Where are Rosie and Credence?!” Newt snarled angrily. Leonides chuckled darkly.

“You’ll be too late, you stupid piece of s-”

A stun spell ricocheted off of the man, and he slumped onto the ground. Both men turned and Newt slumped almost in relief at the man at the end of the hall.

“Newt!!”

“Theseus!”

His brother’s pace turned into a flat-out sprint.

“Newt, oh thank Merlin!” Theseus whispered when he finally reached his brother, seizing him in a fierce embrace. Despite his attempt not to, Newt flinched as his brother brushed against a bruise. Theseus moved away, his expression dark.

“They hurt you.”

“I’m fine.”

“No, you bloody aren’t! They hurt you!” Theseus hissed out, taking a step back to assess his younger brother’s injuries

“I’ll be fine, we need to find the other children. Rosie and Credence are here, somewhere.”

“Newt.” Theseus said but Percival shook his head. They didn’t have time to argue again.

“Stay with your brother and continue the search. We’ll keep looking on the upper levels.” He said and reluctantly Newt nodded and the pair split apart
Percival had just about turned the corner, was about to run down another hall when he heard familiar wailing and then soft hushing. He swallowed roughly, praying to anything that would answer, that she was alright. Very slowly he nudged the nearest door open, the light on the tip of his wand illuminating the space.

His heart caught in his throat.

Rosalind was wailing loudly in Aceline’s arms, squirming as the woman stood on the balcony railing. The woman looked frail, her eyes vacant and lost looking, hair fluttering in the breeze. She merely continued humming and rocking Rosalind, ignorant of the danger around her. She looked up at Percival as he slowly entered the room and her hold tightened on the baby.

“You’re an auror.”

“...That’s right.”

“You’re here to take my daughter from me. You can’t. You can’t ‘ave her!” She spat, lurching backwards a bit, Percival’s heart jumping to his throat.

“...I’m just here to talk.” He said. “Your brother is downstairs right now, talking to the other aurors. I just want to talk to you.”

“He’ll tell you the same thing!!” She spat.

“Easy, easy...” He said quickly, his gaze shifting for a brief moment at how close her feet were from the edge and mentally calculated on how long it would take for him to rush over to the edge and slow her movement down so she and Rosalind wouldn’t die on impact with the ground. Even using wandless magic, she could easily just toss Rosalind out of her arms and he would have to make the decision to save her or Rosalind.

And he didn’t want to make that decision, even if he knew the answer.

“Look...” He managed, looking at the woman who watched him warily, “why don’t you get off of there, and we’ll talk?”

Aceline seemed to bristle at the suggestion.

“I’m fine ‘ere.”

“You’re scaring her though.” Percival ground out through clenched teeth. “You care about that, don’t you?”

She was quiet, before shuffling forward a little bit forward, but not off the railing. She continued staring at him, her eyes wary, like a cornered animal.

They were silent for a few moments.

“Aceline, you know this is ending here, don’t you?” Percival asked and she looked away, “You know that you and your brother aren’t leaving here freely.”

“We are bettering the wizarding world.”

“You kidnapped children from their families. You killed a little boy.”

“No! That...Aaren was an accident, He wasn’ supposed to die!!”

“But he did.”

“It was an accident!” She said, her bottom lip trembling.

“He was four, Aceline.”

She shook her head violently.

“He wasn’t supposed to die! It was an accident, I swear!! I swear it was just an accident!! He was running down the stairs and tripped...he wasn’t supposed to...it was an accident!” She kept saying, curling inwards as though protecting herself.

“Accident or not, you can’t take back that he was killed in your care. He was only a little boy, Aceline. His life is gone now. That’s not bettering our world.”

“He would have been safer if we didn’t have to hide in the first place. If-”

“Exposing our world the way Grindelwald wants to isn’t bettering it either, Aceline. You know that.”

She was quiet, almost like a petulant child being scolded.

“These children’s parents are worried sick, Aceline. And Aaren’s mother-”

“I had a child...a daughter. Once. Or was going to. Ma fille.” She suddenly said, and Percival’s heart skipped a beat as her expression darkened. “I was only four months along when those Non-Magique’s poisoned me...my stomach started to burn and zey took me to zeir hospital. With their healers, and their medicine. I lost ‘er, I lost my daughter. Because of them.” She snarled and Percival swallowed, roughly.

“I doubt it was their intention.” He said.

“Oh don’t make me laugh!!” She snapped out, lurching a bit. “They said that it sometimes happens, that ze body will reject the baby, but they killed her! They killed her because they knew what I was!”

“Do you know that for certain?” He asked, taking a slow step forward.

Closer.

“They might as well have said it!” She snapped, her eyes wild, chest heaving. “Ma petite fille!!” she sobbed trying in vain to shush Rosalind again.

“So you joined Grindelwald’s cause?” Percival supplied and she flinched.

“My brother did, I just followed ‘im to make sure no other witch went through what I went through.”

“I’m sorry...for your loss. And if what you say is true, then we’ll make sure those no-maj’s are brought to justice. But that doesn’t make what you and your brother did here right.” Percival stated. “You know that.”

“We were going to protect future children. You can understand that, can’t you? Wouldn’t you do anything for your family? To make sure that they were safe and happy?”

His next step faltered as rage filtered in when he thought about his sister, about their family and how distraught they were. How frantic he had been with finding Elaine and the panic when he had actually found her barely alive. How the other families clung to the hope of their children being alive, looking at the aurors as though they hadn’t slept in weeks. How Aaren’s parents broke when they saw their son’s body. How their child was gone. How he worried about Credence and Rosalind and then when Newt was gone, taken.

Something in him broke.

“Nothing like this!!” He snapped. “You tore families apart by snatching their children! One family can never be the same again because of your actions. You had her family killed!” He gestured to Rosalind, “She would have been dead too if your brother had been given the choice!”

“Her parents were traitors to Grindelwald! They deserved to die! Yes, my brother would have killed her, but I intervened! I stopped him!”

“Your brother was the traitor, Aceline! He didn’t want her parents telling Grindelwald that he was kidnapping and abusing children! He killed them and left her in a tree trunk!! If Newt hadn’t gone exploring around that area, she would have starved to death or died because of exposure!”

“I…” She stopped, looking at Rosalind as Percival took another step towards her.

“Did she deserve that? You say you’re here to protect. But who are you protecting?”

She was quiet for a few moments, before looking at him with a blank expression.

“Her.” She muttered slowly, as though that clarity had dawned on her, and Percival could swear his heart swooped down to his stomach as she pivoted on the balcony.
Forgetting his magic, he rushed forward, wrapping his left arm around her waist, barely managing to stop her fall and him from following after her. His sighed burned and he grimaced in pain.

“Let me go!”

“No!!”

“Let me die!! Just let me die!!”

“She deserves a life too!!” Percival snapped. “If you really loved your daughter, if you really think she deserved to live, then Rosalind deserves the same!! She doesn’t deserve to die!!”

She went still, so still, but for a brief moment Percival saw sanity in her vacant eyes as she looked at Rosalind and slowly she turned in his grip and lifted the wailing bundle towards him.

“T...take her.”

Risking falling over the ledge, he released his grip on the banister with his right arm, praying he could keep his balance and wrapped his arm under Rosalind, hoping he was gripping her tightly enough.

He looked away from Aceline for a moment, just for a moment. And felt Aceline shift in his hold. Then a snapping sound seemed to overlap Rosalind’s wailing and then mind-numbing pain in wrapped around his arm.

His arm went limp and he watched as Aceline plummeted before trying to stop himself from falling after her, ignoring the blinding pain that swam through his left side. He heard the familiar sickening cracking sound and looked down for a brief moment staring at the crumpled body below, before pulling himself back onto the balcony, grimacing in pain and looked at Rosalind, who was still screaming at the top of her little lungs. Heart in his throat, almost choking with relief, he let out a shaky breath.

“I’ve got you...you’re safe.” He promised quietly. “It’s okay, it’s okay.”

“Sir, did you find her?!” He glanced back as Tina raced into the door and utter relief covered her face as she spotted the tiny girl now in his arm, her crying slowly quieting. “Oh thank God.”

“Any others?”

“We found Credence, and we’re still looking for the others. Sir,” Tina said, her voice soft, “I’ll take care of things here. Newt’s probably worried sick anyways.” Tina supplied.

“Alright.”

“Sir...your arm-”

“Aceline used a spell to break my arm so she could drop.” Percival said, wincing slightly. “It’ll be fine. And we need to have her body collected.”

“Yes Sir...If you want I can at least do a temporary mend.” Tina suggested and Percival nodded, flinching as with a flick of her wand, felt the bone click back into place. The pain receded slightly

“Thank you.”

“You’re welcome Sir.”

Percival looked down at Rosie, whose face was losing its dark color, returning back to normal as she whimpered.

“Let’s go.” He said softly and they hurried off the balcony. He was comforted by the familiar weight, the familiar sound.

Everything would be alright.


Newt grimaced as he followed Theseus and the other aurors. Theseus looked at him in alarm.

“Newt, you can-”

A quick glare silenced the auror and they entered the room. Soft gasps filled the room and the children in it curled away, the older ones hiding the younger ones behind them.

“It’s okay, you’re safe now.” Theseus said softly, soothingly. They curled further, eyes widening.

“My name is Theseus Scamander, I’m an auror in the Ministry of Magic. We’ve got some American aurors here too if you’d be m-”

“Theseus!! Ma!”

Newt almost crumpled to the ground as Credence bolted to him, colliding into him.

“Oh Credence…” He whispered, gripping him tightly as the little boy sobbed.

“I...I tried to protect her.” Credence whimpered. “I tried.”

“I know, I know.” Newt soothed, picking Credence up and he curled up to Newt, shivering violently. “You’re not in trouble.”

“But Rosie-”

“We’ll find her Credence. I swear.” Newt looked over his shoulder as he said that, hearing hurried footsteps come down the hall. Then Percival turned the corner, and in his arms was a small, whimpering bundle.

“Mister Graves!!!”

“Percival, you found her, you-” The relief was short lived as he could see one Percival’s arms in a sling, blood dripping on his side. “You’re bleeding.”

“Just a scratch. I’ll be fine.” Percival said dismissively. Newt swallowed, before nodding.

“How is she?”

“She’s fine…” he replied and Newt’s entire stature relaxed instantly, cupping the whimpering girl’s cheek, “Aceline kept her fed and clean at least..”

“Where-”

“Dead. She jumped off the balcony, broke my arm to get me to let go of her. She would have damn well tried to take Rosie with her if given the choice.” Percival muttered and Newt looked at him in horror. “Newt, I’m fine. Credence?”

Newt gestured to the small form pressed to his side.

“Traumatized, a bit bruised, but otherwise healthy.”

‘And you?”

“...What about you?”

“Nothing that a healing potion couldn’t fix quickly enough. Newt, how are you?” He asked again and Newt was quiet for a moment.

“I’ll be fine. It’s not the worse I’ve gone through by any means.” He replied gently. Percival stared at him for a moment before, exhaling loudly in relief.

“Good, that’s...that’s good. I-”

Leonides was being dragged away, whipping his gaze over to the group, fire in his eyes. Time seemed to slow.

And maybe…

Maybe if Percival or Tina, or even Theseus had been fully paying attention to him, instead of checking on Rosalind and the others they would have sensed him summoning magic, slamming into the one auror holding him and snagging his wand, aiming it at Percival though Newt noticed first. Maybe if Newt wasn’t injured, his senses and reflexes dulled he’d have thought of something better than shoving Percival back as the foyer filled with a vibrant red light, and Newt crumpled to the ground like a discarded ragdoll.

“NEWT!!!”

The magizoologist stared blankly up, his pupils dilating as he descended into shock, blood pooling around him as red staining his shirt. He grimaced, swallowing thickly as he fought against darkness. His ears rang, throat burning faces flitting in his waning vision. Dimly he could hear yelling, but he wasn’t sure who it was from.
The last visage he saw before the claws of unconsciousness dragged him under was Percival’s face pale and desperate, yelling for him before the sweet lull of unconsciousness pulled him away, and he knew no more.

Chapter Text

It was late.

Percival could tell that much, because there wasn’t as many people walking around in the hospital. Many of the patients were either asleep or about to, and the night shift was just starting. Exhaustion was begging him to rest, but stubbornness refused to yield.

They had found every single missing child. Alive, being reunited with their families. All of them were alright. ‘Alright’ might have been pushing it, he mused. Alive, yes. Traumatized? More than likely. They all had haunted expressions on their faces, unsure of who was friend or foe. No one had died, but something had died within them. Something they could never get back. And Credence and Rosie were fine. After a check up, both were with Queenie and Jacob for a well deserved rest. As much as the auror side of him screamed up and down about the laws and whatnot, as much as he wanted to be there for them right then and there...he couldn’t find himself to be anything but relieved that they were with those two. They would keep them safe and warm.

But Newt…

Percival suddenly found he couldn’t breathe again, the knot growing larger in his throat, refusing to part. Every single time he thought about Newt, he thought about the stench of blood, Newt staring at him with glazed eyes, unable to focus on any of them, trying to keep him from bleeding to death right in front of him. He glanced at his hands, reddened from the vigorous cleaning they had gone through to get the blood-Newt’s blood-off of them, but he could still see flecks embedded in lines of his fingers, the crevices of finger nails.
His fault.

This was all his f-

“Perce?”

He looked up with a jerk, before sighing as Theseus held out a cup of coffee.

“Thanks.”

“Honestly, the nurses gave me it. Didn’t have the heart to tell them I couldn’t stand it.” He joked, though it was lacking the normal humor. Percival hummed a response, but did little else.

“Leonides is in the holding cell while extradition papers are being made up. I think he already gave up friends of his that was a part of this sick ring, so that’s a bonus. He probably knows his days are limited. And Aceline’s body is being sent to be interred in their family’s plot. Probably not going to have a whole lot of people there for her funeral.” Theseus explained and Percival scoffed.

“Not surprising. From what the French Ambassador explained, or what they learned from the house-elves at the estate in France, was that the two were…involved with one another to ‘keep the de Rais line pure’,” Percival explained, his stomach rolling at the thought, though Theseus didn’t seem all that surprised, “personally I think that while Leonides was all for it, Aceline was too mentally abused to really know the difference between right and wrong.”

“Probably…a lot of prominent European Wizard families are known to marry within their families. Though siblings is a bit extreme, I’ll admit to that.”

“Seriously?”

Theseus snorted, shrugging.

“Just take a look at some of the Sacred Twenty-Eight family lines in England. It’s not unheard of for first cousins to marry, so I wouldn’t be surprised if siblings didn’t get together once in awhile.”

“...that’s just...just…”

“I know, I know.” Theseus said. “Anyway, I think that family has had plenty of problems historically. Though there are plenty who have done good, the Rais family has always been associated for what one ancestor did in the 15th century. Apparently Leonides decided to follow in his footsteps.”
Percival frowned, rubbing his face roughly, placing the cup on the floor next to him.

“This is going to be a mess.”

“You’re telling me. I’m just glad I’m not apart of the French Ministry. The newspapers there must be having a field day. Though I don’t want to think how much trouble Newt and I are going to be in.”

“With who?”

“Eh...our mother mostly. But the Ministry isn’t going to be happy either. Especially with Newt. They were really bloody pissed with the whole thing that happened last year. With everything happening now, and when they find out Newt was involved again...”

He trailed off looking at Percival, who looked guilt-stricken.

“Hey, this isn’t your fault.”

“I got him involved.”

“He would have involved himself in the case anyways, Perce.” Theseus argued. Percival glanced at the door.

“Percival?”

Percival glanced at him, throat tightening.

“He’ll be fine.” Theseus said. “He’ll be just fine.”

He wasn’t sure who Theseus was trying to reassure at the moment; himself or him. Honestly, he felt like he was going to crawl out of his skin, his hands itching, and his fingers dug into the cuticles of his fingernails, trying to scrap away the blood.

Newt’s blood.

There had been so much blood. And it had been his fault. He called himself an auror, and he hadn’t even thought that the Frenchman would have attacked. Because of his stupidity, Newt was hurt, injured.

Because of him.

Would he ever be safe being with him? Or would there be a constant threat looming over Newt like a guillotine because he was associated with him?

Percival swallowed, his throat burning.

Just let him live. That was all he could ask.

He would do anything to see Newt alive again.

Even if that meant letting him go.


He hadn’t believed it when an auror had stopped him on his way to the loo. He couldn’t wrap his mind about that thought of him arriving here. Why would he, of all people, be here unannounced? It hadn’t made sense. But sure enough he was there, Theseus paused as he entered the small room, staring at the man who was looking down at a casket. A soft knock startled the other man and he turned. Theseus cocked his head to the side.
Eberhard Beltz grimaced looking away.

“So the Head of the Aurors in the German Department is finally gracing America.”

“What of it?”

“Nothing. Just noting a lot of different nationalities have been visiting lately…” Theseus snapped, sarcasm latent in his voice. Beltz turned back, looking at the caskets. “Shouldn’t you be with your department?”

“And shouldn’t you be with your brother?”

Theseus glared at him, eyes darkening in warning.

“He’s recovering right now in the hospital with the other aurors swearing to watch over him and I’ll was just on my way to the loo when I was told that you had come here. So I want to know why.”

“These two were part of my country. Might as well deliver them home.”

Something in his stance, the way he glanced at Catin’s casket made Theseus pause, brow furrowing as something tickled in the back of his mind, before clicking into place.

Ebbe.

“...that’s the only reason?”

Beltz frowned, looking away.

“It’s the part that matters.”

“How did you know Catin?” Theseus asked and Beltz glared at him. “You knew her more than just an auror/criminal relationship, didn’t you?”

“What makes you say that?”

“Because I looked into Catin’s history again.” Theseus lied and Beltz seemed to pause, staring at the one casket. “They were part of my case, and I needed to know everything about them. You lied when you said Catin didn’t have any other family.”

“Scamander-”

“Eberhard Beltz. Called Ebbe for short.” Theseus paused, letting the words sink in. “That’s you, isn’t it? She never called you by your full name. To protect you, probably, since the head of the Security Department in Germany couldn’t be associated with known followers of Grindelwald.”

Beltz was quiet for a few moments, before sighing.

“I always hated that nickname.” He admitted, running a hand through his hair.

“You knew her...more than just from her record, didn’t you?”

“Yes. She’s my brother’s half-sister from his mother. I have no blood relation to her, but I was curious who my older brother’s mother was...what life she had held. Why they separated. And then I met my older brother’s baby half-sister. We were so much alike. Both from different marriages...both looked at by our parents as regret.”

“You didn’t tell anyone this.”

“No. She didn’t want her friends trying to use her to get to me, and I would have had my head served to the Minister on a silver platter if word got out about her and I.”

“So you were close.”

“...You could say that.” Beltz responded after a moment and Theseus frowned as Beltz shook his head. “Bah. It’s useless now. Too many things were between us. Too much unresolved.”

“...You loved her.” Theseus finally said with dawning realization.

“...I did. I still do. But it doesn’t matter.” Beltz replied, resting his hand on the coffin. “At least now, she’s in a better place. No more pain. No more abandonment.” He said softly.

“Did Dorin know?”

“He probably suspected, but he never told me or her directly if he did.” Beltz replied and Theseus swallowed, that letter coming back to the front of his mind. Blood of my blood, Dorin had written. Did that mean...

“Is...Rosa...Olimpia...is she your daughter?”

“Does it matter if she is?” Beltz asked after a moment.

“Beltz.” Theseus replied sternly.

“It doesn’t matter, Scamander...even if I am, Olimpia deserves to be raised as far away from the taint her family was involved in. As far away from the shit that the world is going through. She’s gone through enough by now...she doesn’t need someone who only sees her mother when he looks at her.”

Theseus looked at him, before nodding slightly, turning to leave.

“What is her name now? She isn’t still Olimpia is she? ” Beltz asked, Theseus pausing.

“My brother gave her the name Rosalind, if that’s what you mean.”

“A beautiful rose, hm? Better a flower than a home for the gods.” Beltz said softly with a laugh. “Let her be raised to be a flower than a warrior, Scamander.”

“We will.” Theseus promised, looking back at Beltz after a moment. “...She might ask one day. About her parents. What do you want us to tell her?” Theseus finally asked and Beltz exhaled shakily, looking away for a moment, before squaring his shoulders and looking back at Theseus, eyes wet.

“The truth. The day her mother died, her father died as well. But she was loved. And that’s all she needs to know.”


Alive.

He was alive.

Percival wasn’t sure if he could get his mind to move past that point. Newt was alive. Weak from blood loss, still badly injured, unconscious as his body mended, but alive.

But he was injured because of him, a voice whispered in the back of his mind. He’s in danger because of you.

“Once news reaches my mum, it will be chaos. An armada of hippogriffs will descend into New York, I promise you.”

Percival glanced up at Theseus as he entered the room. He tried to smile, but it didn’t quite make it, looking away.

“...then he’ll have to leave.”

“Perce?”

He refused to look at Theseus, knowing his resolve would crumble.

“He needs to recover someplace quiet. And that is most definitely not here.”

“Well probably, but you’re making it sound awfully like you’re giving him the boot.”

Percival swallowed roughly.

“He needs to be somewhere safe and quiet to recuperate...and that’s not here, that’s not…”

That’s not with me.

His throat ached, unable to finish the sentence. He would be safer in England than here with him. He could admit that.

It didn’t mean he enjoyed it.

“Percival, you don’t-”

“It’s going to be mayhem here, Theseus. Can you honestly tell me he’s going to be fine recovering here? That he’d be happy here?”

Caged like a bird, regulations coating over him, people looking at him like he was a specimen?

“...No, not exactly.”

“Then he can’t stay here.” Percival whispered past the lump in his throat. Theseus looked at him, a look akin to pity etched on his face.

“Percival, that’s not fair to you. Or to him.”

He was quiet, looking away from the British Auror.

“The world isn’t...the world isn’t fair, Theseus. I learned that a long time ago.”

And that was the end of the conversation as far as he was concerned. Any argument fell on deaf ears. It was only later, when Percival opened the door quietly, peering in that the decision came crashing onto his chest. Newt was lying on the medical bed, still as death. The only thing disproving that notion was the slight rise and fall of the magizoologist’s chest. Pickett was tangled in Newt’s curls looking around mournfully, probably feeling helpless that there wasn’t anything he could do.
Percival could relate.

He sat down in a chair next to the bedside, slumping forward and resting his head in his hands. He inhaled and exhaled slowly, trying to push back the burning in his eyes. It was for the best. It was...Newt would be safe. He wouldn’t be able to hold him, but he wouldn’t be in danger.

“I’m sorry Newt...I’m probably going to make you hate me, and I can’t blame you if you do…” He said softly looking at the sleeping man. “But I can’t...if I lost you…”

He looked away, gathering his resolve before looking back and cupping Newt’s face in his hand, running a thumb over his cheek.

“I-I can’t lose you. Rosie needs you...Credence, Credence needs you. And I...I don’t know what I’d do if you got hurt because of me again.”

Silence answered him.

“I love you…so damn much.” He finally said in the quiet. It sounded so loud, but Newt didn’t stir. Percival swallowed back the burn and he let out a shaky sigh.

He kissed stood and kissed Newt’s brow.

“And I’m sorry, but I can’t...I can’t let you get hurt.”

He was an auror...auror’s made sacrifices. He would make this sacrifice.

Even if it felt like his arm was going to be torn off as he walked out of the hospital room.


It felt strange being back in England, Newt considered as he followed Credence around his parents’ property, taking in the small herd of hippogriffs that were milling about in the field. Far away was the hustle and bustle of New York City, replaced with the quiet tranquility of his boyhood home.

He had missed the quiet, the simplicity.

And yet…

“Newton.”

He turned slightly, offering a small smile as his mother came up to him. Alexandra Scamander smiled but her eyes were filled with concern as she got closer.

“What is wrong my little star?”

“Nothing, Mother.” He said and she frowned, hands resting on her hips.

“Newton.”

He frowned, looking away. His mother sighed, before glancing over at the young boy observing the roaming hippogriffs.

“You have a magizoologist in the making there. He might even take up researching hippogriffs.”

He snorted.

“More likely it will be mooncalves.”

His mother hummed her response, and he looked away. He didn’t need to worry her, and this would pass. He was sure of it.

“You have gone through quite the journey, Newton.” His mother said softly, “and I commend you taking it on all by yourself.”

He smiled slightly to himself, looking at Alexandra.

“Mum-”

“Don’t you tell me to not worry about you. I’m your mother. I’ll worry about what I want to worry about. Even if it makes me suffer twice.”
Newt snorted.

“I’m allowed to worry.”

“There’s nothing to worry about.” Newt promised, with a smile he was hoped would sway her. He needn’t have bothered, it seemed as tiny footsteps hurried towards them.

“Mistress Scamander. Younger Master Scamander.” A tiny voice squeaked. Turning around, the house-elf gave a small curtsy.

“Missus Sebille from America is calling by fire.”

“I’ll get it.” Newt said, kissing his mother on the temple and following the house elf inside. He sat down in front of the fireplace.

“Mr. Scamander.”

“Sebille. Theseus isn’t here at the moment, I can leave-”

“I actually called to talk to you.” Sebille interrupted. Newt went silent. “How are you?”

“I’m...I’m fine. I mended up perfectly well.” Newt said. The flames danced, and he was sure it was that that he saw her expression flickering because of the flames, and not her brow furrowing, and definitely not a look of concern on her face.

“Alright...well everything is returning to relative normality.” Sebille said with a chuckle. “Elaine has fully recovered and is getting back into daily life. Nothing lasting seems to be affecting her.”

“That’s a relief.”

“Mhm. Percival is better as well, as everything is getting back into groove in the government and…”

She seemed to trail off as Newt looked away.

“You haven’t heard from him...have you?”

Numbly he shook his head and Sebille let out a sigh.

“Honestly, I’m surprised he’s lasted this long.” Sebille’s voice said good-naturedly and Newt’s vision swam.

“I can’t blame him, I mean I-”

“Newt, do not blame yourself. My brother’s bull-headedness is not your fault.” Sebille interrupted, but Newt looked away. “How are Credence and Rosie? Adjusting well?”

“Oh...y-yes, they’re perfectly well. Rosie’s learned how rolled over and is getting better at sitting up.” Newt replied, thankful for the change in topic. Sebille smiled.

“Perfect, she’s reaching those milestones with flying colors.”

“That’s what my mother said, too.” Newt said in relief. They spoke for a little while longer before Sebille smiled, before glancing behind her shoulder, the flames fanning out from the movement.

“I have to go. Work. Tell Theseus that I found some leads he might want to use for his investigations.”

“Of course.”

She offered a smile before her visage vanished in the flames and Newt sighed, rubbing his forehead. He didn’t know how much more he was going to be able to take. Queenie and Jacob were practically settled in, the muggle man already looking for a place to set up a bakery in England, with the ownership to the American bakery given to his Uncle. Tina wouldn’t be far behind, he was certain, at the very least to be with her sister, but more than likely coming here for Theseus.

And him?

He swallowed roughly, pushing down the knot in his throat.

He had Credence and Rosalind. He had his creatures. He was perfectly fine. He would be happy, he just had to get over it.

He just had to get over it...he scoffed.

If it was only that simple.


Percival rubbed the bridge of his nose as he set the report down on his desk. He had read the same damn sentence at least five times and had gotten nowhere. A part of him wanted to argue it was because of the contents of the report. Leonides de Rais was found dead in his cell. There hadn’t been a cause yet, but everyone knew. Like he had told Leonides, and what the Frenchman had known all along; Grindelwald didn’t take kindly to those who tried to pull one over him.

So it wasn’t difficult to figure out at least whom had done it.

But he didn’t know how he was supposed to feel about it.

On the one hand he was angry. Angry that the man that had terrorized his country, stolen children from families in America resulting in the death of one, would never stand trial to face justice for what he had done. On the other, vindication. The man that had caused his family so much harm, that had nearly killed Newt was gone from this world. He couldn’t wiggle out of charges and continue to be a menace. Continue to threaten him or anyone around him. He sighed, rubbing his forehead.

“I’ll have you know, despite being in my early forties, I still have it.”

He looked up with a start, blinking as the woman at his door smiled.

“Sebille?”

“Clearly I’ve caught you daydreaming. That’s rare. And relax. The boy, Abernathy was it, is perfectly fine. Blushing up a storm, but perfectly fine.”

Percival groaned as Sebille made a show of swinging her hips from side to side.

“How does Calvin deal with you?”

“Because he knows my heart only belongs to him.”

And, Mercy Lewis did that comment cause his own heart to ache, rubbing salt into the gaping wound. Still, Percival was silent, refusing to look at his sister, who sat in the chair parallel to him, flipping her hair back over her shoulder.

“So? What has your mind in the clouds?”

“Leonides is dead.” Percival replied simply, and his sister frowned. “They don’t know the cause yet, but well…”

“You think Grindelwald probably had a hand in it”

“More than likely.”

“You must be relieved. The man who hurt Newt is dead.”

Percival looked away, but didn’t miss the soft scoff.

“Bullseye. Have you heard from him?”

“No. I don’t expect to.”

“Why not?”

“It’s...complicated.”

“No it’s not. You’re just a stubborn man.” She replied and he glared at her. “Look, I have more experience in love, both in watching and being in that same circumstance, and I can tell that you love him.”

“Seb-”

“You love him.” Sebille repeated gently refusing to let him argue, “And I wouldn’t need to be related to you to see that you damn well miss him. I haven’t seen you look at someone the way you looked at him since school, Percival. And even then it was just puppy love.” Sebille continued softly, looking at her brother.

“I also know he loves you and misses you as well.”

Percival’s gaze shot to her and she smiled.

“And you would know this because…?”

“Oh my darling baby brother, so innocent in the ways of news reporting…Did you honestly think I don’t have Theseus as a contact at this point?” Sebille replied with a chuckle. “Anyway... Theseus said that Newt’s been moping at the Scamander property ever since he arrived there. And talking to Newt himself I can see what Theseus meant.”

“When did you…? Never mind, I don’t want to know. He’ll be in danger because of me Sebille, I can’t-”

“Need I remind you, Newt’s livelihood isn’t exactly kittens and rainbows. He has just as much danger as you do, more so because he doesn’t seem to be one to take a step back and observe the situation, rather the one to leap headfirst into danger with a smile.”

“He jumped in front of me and nearly died, Seb.”

“Case and point. Besides, we both know you would have done the same for anyone as well...it’s hypocritical for you to want to stay away to protect him when you would have done the same for him. For the love of God, Perry,” Sebille said gently, “go to London and be with your family.”

“They aren’t-” he began, but paused, unable to finish the sentence, because, Mercy Lewis, he wanted them to be his family. “I mean I-! He’s going to be living in England, Seb-”

“So? Credence is, what, eight almost nine now? It’s two to three years until he’s of age to even go to school. Plenty of time to get your affairs in order and for you both to decide which country you’d rather live in. And it’s not like you’re the last Graves on Earth in America.”

“Seb…”

“Don’t you think out of anyone who’s more than earned to love someone and be loved by someone just as much, it should be the two of you?” She asked softly. He was quiet, looking away.

“He might not want me back.”

“Okay, where is the confident to annoyance Percival Graves that is my baby brother? Because this? This isn’t him.”

“Funny. Very funny.” He muttered and she rolled her eyes. “I can’t just-”

“Oh, stop being a wet blanket and take a vacation to England. You don’t even have to tell anyone you’re leaving to woo someone. Mercy Lewis, I think the department would understand a need for a vacation after all the shit you’ve gone through.”

Percival was quiet, sighing and rubbing his brow.

“You’re not going to let up until I go and ask the President for a vacation, are you?”

“You know me too well.”

Percival sighed again, but found he didn’t have it in him to argue. Instead his heart seemed to come alive, and the world seemed to grow in color. He stood, pausing for a moment.

“I have to know. If this hadn’t of worked, what were you three planning?”

“Me? Nothing much. But I think Tristan and Elaine were thinking of stunning you, throwing you on the next ship they could find and sending your ass to England.”

And this time, Percival couldn’t help the laugh.

Chapter Text

Theseus and Newt hadn’t been overstating the manor they lived in, quite the contrary, they had been understating.

And he thought his family manor had been big.

He swallowed roughly, staring at the land and the house, nervous all of a sudden. He didn’t even know if Newt would want to see him. What he had done…

“Hello.”

He jumped, hand going to his pocket but stilling as a woman sat up from a small vegetable garden, standing. He felt as though she looked familiar, but he couldn’t quite place it. He cleared his throat, feeling heat crawl up the back of his neck.

“Pardon, is Newt Scamander here?”

The woman stared at him for a moment before she gasped and smiled.

“Oh, you must be Percival Graves.” The woman said with a soft, lilting voice, her eyes that looked so much like Newt’s lighting up. “Newton and Theseus talked about you so much.”

He was staring at her, that nagging feeling growing in the back of his head. Where had he-

And then it hit him and his stomach swooped downward.

“You must be their mother…” He trailed off as she let out a tinkling laugh.

“Alexandra Scamander, yes. I’ve heard along the grapevine that both my sons were causing quite a stir in America?”

“Wouldn’t be the Scamander brothers if they didn’t cause a stir.” He said before he could stop himself and Alexandra laughed at how red his face became.

“That is sadly very accurate. No matter what my mother-in-law says or my husband argues, Theseus and Newton were never prim and proper. They get that from me.” She said with a smile and a wink. Well she wasn’t hexing him or cursing him. That was a good sign, at least he hoped it was a good sign.

“Would you like some tea?”

“I...pardon?” Percival asked, thrown by the non-sequitur.

“Tea. It was a long journey, I assume.”

Unconsciously Percival checked himself. He didn’t smell, and he had shaved right? Still, he nodded and followed her inside, glancing around as he entered the parlor. Oh, Tina was going to lose her collective mind whenever she came over here to be with Theseus.

“Director.”

He jumped slightly, before following the bemused woman further into the home. The quick pitter patter of the feet sounded and two house elves came around the corner.

“Mistress Scamander, are you well? Jolly will get some tea started.”

Percival glanced down at the small house-elf who was helping Alexandra down the hall. Another one stood in front of him, eyeing him suspiciously.

“Takry, it’s alright. He is a friend of Theseus and Newt.”

“Yes, Mistress Scamander. Follow Takry, Mister.”

“Um...alright.”

Within moments, Percival was sitting parallel to the older woman, staring at her as the house-elves flitted around them.

“Don’t worry, they’ve been freed.” Alexandra reassured as she stirred her tea. The corner of Percival’s mouth twitched.

“Newt’s influence I assume?”

“A solid assumption. You know Newt, he’s very much for creature rights.”

“Yes...he is.”

“And that’s one of the many reasons you love him, yes?”

Percival barely managed to not choke on the gulp of tea, instead forcing the scalding liquid down, clearing his throat as he made eye contact with the now smiling Ms. Scamander. She took a slight sip of her tea, before setting the cup down, seeming to observe him. And truly, Percival could say with certainty that Newt was a spitting copy of his mother.

“I’m his mother, I can tell when things have changed in either of my sons. Both are strong individuals. But with strength, there is a chance of vulnerability, and for those to exploit it if given the chance. Newton’s heart is kind, gentle, almost naive in that aspect...and he has already been exploited for that naivety once under the belief that they loved him, and that harmed him more than any spell or weapon could do. As his mother...I desire nothing more than for both my sons to be happy.”

Percival swallowed, and then shook his head.

“I have no desire in hurting him, Mrs. Scamander.” He muttered, scratching the back of his neck as he felt heat crawl up it. “...Loving someone isn’t just when someone just gives or takes from the other and the other does nothing. I’m not saying that there won’t be...difficult times. I don’t think there is a relationship that doesn’t have its downs...but…”

He thought about Newt humming as he had been making some food. Newt always with a cup of tea after he awoke from a nightmare, always a listening ear. Newt blushing brightly, that night in the rain, his expression of surprise and bewilderment. Newt’s smile as he talked about his creatures, how he practically glowed when discussing them.

He cleared his throat, unsure if he could get his vocals to start going again and she smiled.

“He’s at Hogwarts.”

Percival blinked and looked at Alexandra as she picked up her cup of tea again, taking a sip as she observed him.

“At first, I couldn’t know if you were truly here to see my son, or had other motives and did not desire him to be hurt again. But you must really love him to have come all the way here just to speak with him. And he’s been looking like such a lost puppy lately, I half wondered if someone had hurt a creature of his before Theseus told me it was probably just heart-sickness. Of course he would never say that outright to me.”

Percival could understand that and Alexandra chuckled.

“Now as I was saying, he’s in Hogwarts. He’s been doing a few lectures for a few classes. He had one earlier today, and one probably later on. Unless something else occurs, Credence and Rosie are normally with him all day.”

“Um...thank you, Ma’am.” Percival stammered out and Alexandra hummed.

“You are quite welcome.” She said as he finished his tea and stood to leave. “Director Graves…”

The man paused, looking at her. She smiled as though she was a cat who ate the canary.

“Welcome to the family.”

And if Percival’s face turned bright red, he would say it was just the heat of the day, and nothing more.


“Now Acromantulas are native to the rainforests of Southeast Asia, particularly Borneo where it inhabits dense jungles. They can lay up to one-hundred soft, wide, beach ball-sized eggs at a time. They usually hatch in six to eight weeks. These little ones for example are only about a week old.”

The group of Slytherin and Gryffindor children all took a small step back from the aquarium box that was in front of them, several with horror on their faces. Newt laughed, settling against the table.

“Don’t worry, the glass is shatterproof. I understand that most people find them unsettling, though the poison they carry at this stage is only a mild paralytic and not toxic.” Newt explained.

“But they are poisonous?” a Slytherin asked nervously.

“Well yes, but-”

The group of children took another step back. The only one who didn’t move was Rosie as she snoozed on the travel cot nearby. Newt stared at them before sighing and opening the case. An audible gasp filled the air, and one girl looked about ready to cry as Newt laid his hand down at the bottom of the box. One spider scurried over and rested in his hand, and he effortlessly lifted it up.

“But you must keep in mind, you won’t find these spiders in your garden or shed. They’re not very solitary in terms of their own kind, and very much enjoy jungles. The denser, the better. Not exactly easy to find here in the United Kingdom, correct?”

A wave of laughter filled the air, quickly quieting as the spider scurried up Newt’s arm, looking around. Gently, like he was merely holding a kitten, Newt collected it and placed it back into the glass case where it scurried around with its brothers and sisters.

The rest of the lecture continued with relative ease, and before long the class was emptying out.

Newt was placing his notes back in order when there a knock alerted him to another presence.

“It seems Professor Fauns students are enjoying your lectures, Mr. Scamander.”

Newt offered a sheepish grin.

“I think it has more to do with the creatures Professor Dumbledore, rather than me.”

“I tend to disagree. Honestly, I think you would be a wonderful professor, Newt.” Dumbledore remarked and Newt snorted.

“Remember, I fear the life behind a desk.”

“That is true.” Dumbledore replied, before the two left the classroom. “Likewise I don’t think Professor Fauns would be wanting to retire just yet.”

Newt chuckled, and after he had sent the glass tank of Acromantulas down the small ladder, closed his case with a soft click.

“I need to go collect Credence.” He said as he picked up Rosie who molded to him, cheek pressed to his shoulder, squirming as she began to awaken.

“How are they adjusting to being here?” Dumbledore asked as they left the classroom. Newt smiled fondly.

“They’re doing well. Enjoying the climate and Hogwarts in general. Mother and Father are spoiling them.”

Dumbledore chuckled.

“I am not surprised.”

“Ma!!”

Newt paused when he spotted Credence rushing over to him, a bright smile on his face. He looked at the young boy curiously.

“Hello Credence. Where were you this time?”

“The kitchens! Geesey made me a sandwich!”

Newt smiled, ruffling his hair lightly.

“Was it a good sandwich?”

“Mhm! The house-elves are really nice!” Credence chirped, “Hi Rosie!”

The infant cooed as she awoke further, squirming to get a look. Newt glanced over at Dumbledore who was smiling at them.

“You certainly have a way with children, Newt. Similar to creatures if I’m being honest.”

Newt shyly smiled, resting Rosie on his hip as he followed his older professor into his office, setting her on his lap when he sat. Dumbledore shifted around, before smiling.

“Lemon drop?”

“...you certainly like that candy the most, don’t you, Professor?” Newt finally managed, accepting one. Dumbledore chuckled softly.

“It is a rather enticing treat. And no more of this ‘Professor’ business, Mr. Scamander. I’m not your teacher anymore and you’re no longer a student, are you?”

“Yes Sir.”

Silence filled the air, and in the distance Newt could hear children laughing, students running around on free period. He glanced at Rosie who was sitting contently in his lap,staring up at him with an innocent expression. Eventually that would be her, running around, worrying about school, making friends, figuring out who she did or didn’t fancy. Granted if Elaine was any indicator, Percival wouldn’t-

His heart twisted at the thought of the other man and his grip tightened on Rosie.

“What is bothering you Newt?”

Newt looked up at his old professor, grimacing in embarrassment.

“N...nothing.”

Dumbledore threw him a look.

“You were never a good liar in school, Newt. Something is clearly bothering you.”

Newt flushed and looked down, biting his bottom lip.

“Is it something in England?”

No...something that isn’t in England. Someone. Someone far away.

“Perhaps it is something you were acquainted with on your travels.” Dumbledore said and Newt blinked looking up at his old professor, who smiled a knowing smile.

“Was it from a year ago? Perhaps in Africa?”

Wordlessly, as there wasn’t a point now, the professor would figure out his lie, Newt shook his head. Dumbledore smiled.

“North America then?”

Newt nodded after a hesitant moment.

“I see...” Dumbledore paused for a moment, “Newt, what happened there a month ago wasn’t your fault, Newt.”

“Because of me-”

“Did Director Graves pull you in front of him?”

“Well...no…”

“Did he know that Leonides de Rais was going to snatch an auror’s wand and try to attack him while he was injured and holding a small infant? And that you would protect the both of them by jumping in front of him?”

“No, of course not! But I…” Newt trailed off, unsure on how to answer. Rosie cooed softly and Dumbledore’s eyes lit up, a hand extending, and allowing the tiny girl to wrap her tiny fist around a finger, smiling as she giggled.

“I’ve found that people do not always think before they act when those they love are in danger, Mr. Scamander. I have been witness to that firsthand, many times unfortunately.”

Newt blinked, looking at Dumbledore as an expression he couldn’t quite place on his professor flitted over his face before it returned to a gentle smile.

“I’ve come to find that love is strong...much stronger than most forms of magic. So many different types of love, each special in their own kind.”

“But I hurt him.”

“Yes...love occasionally does that.” Dumbledore admitted softly, almost to himself. “But I will admit, that with hurt comes a relief eventually if one is patient.”

Newt swallowed, before nodding. Silence filled the room, but Newt found his heart took over the silence.

He sometimes wondered if Dumbledore knew more than he ever or would ever let on.

And whether or not he wanted to find out.


Alright, he would admit (though not to anyone out loud, especially in the US) that Hogwarts was impressive. For one, the grounds were extensive. Sloping lawns, flowerbeds and vegetable patches, a loch, a large dense forest, several greenhouses and other outbuildings, and if he wasn’t mistaken there was a full-size Quidditch Pitch. He heard a familiar screeching and looked up to see a pair of owls flying towards another tower, likely an owlery. There were three other towers that were taller than the rest, jutting out of the ancient castle. Not to mention that the magic that filled the air was almost...electric and his skin was practically burning at the atmosphere.

Yes, the school grounds of Hogwarts were impressive...

But Mercy Lewis...how in the hell was he supposed to find Newt in all of this?

“You couldn’t fall in love with a simple person, no Percival. You just had to fall for a troublemaker.” He mumbled to himself, trying to figure out a way to narrow down the search when he heard a familiar squeal. Spinning around, he looked towards the loch and spotted three figures.

Newt, Credence, and Rosie were near the water’s edge, their shoes and socks discarded a little ways away next to Newt’s case, pants rolled up to mid calf. Newt was stooped over as he held Rosie gently by the arms, letting the infant girl’s feet splash in the water while Credence skipped some rocks close by to the pair.

Rosie had gotten so big in the month that they had been separated and his heart ached at the thought of what he had missed. He started walking over to them, slowly almost hesitantly, like he was approaching one of Newt’s creatures.

He stepped on a twig, the crack sounding like a gunshot to him and he flinched.

Newt looked up and blinked several times, staring at him in shock.

It would be almost humorous if Percival’s heart wasn’t at risk to fly out of his chest.

“...Percival?”

“Hello Newt.”

Newt’s mouth opened and closed several times, blinking as though he couldn’t quite believe what he was seeing. Percival offered a small smile.

“Per-”

“Mr. Graves!!” Credence called out, expression lighting up as he hurried over to them, tackling the older man’s legs. Percival stumbled back, but smiled, reaching down and pulling the little boy up.

“Hello Credence.”

“What are you doing in London?? Are you on a mission??” The boy asked with excitement and Percival chuckled.

“Not exactly...I was just wondering where Newt had lived and wanted to see if Hogwarts was as great as everyone made it sound.”

“It’s great here!” Credence said with a bright smile. Percival smiled, ruffling his hair. A squeal turned his attention to the Rosie secure in Newt’s grasp, giggling and reaching for him, a bright smile on her face. His heart warmed and he brushed strands of hair back, earning a giggle.

“You’re here.”

It was faint, almost disbelieving and his attention returned to Newt, swallowing roughly.

“I am.”

Newt’s mouth opened and closed several times, blinking as though he couldn’t believe it. Percival swallowed before sighing.

“We need to talk.”


It was quiet, Percival mused as he looked out towards the lake. Hogwarts was behind them, Credence nearby with Rosie. He glanced at Newt, who was fiddling with his fingers.

“Newt-”

“I...I probably should apologize. I put you in such a rough spot back then, I didn’t...I mean I don’t, I-”

“Newt.”

The younger man flinched, biting his lower lip lightly, exhaling shakily as Percival cupped his face, thumbs running against his cheekbones.

“Don’t apologize for my stupidity, Newt. I have a lot to apologize for and absolutely none of it is your fault.”

“Wha…”

"I'm not a man who...shows his emotions easily, Newt. I never have, even as a child. Becoming an auror and later the Director, made me hide those emotions even more." He began. "So much so, that I compartmentalized work, family, and general life to the point where each was a stranger to the other." He explained and Newt nodded quietly. "So when it comes to something different, something that can destroy those separations...I tend to run away."

"You? Run away?"

"Such a tone of surprise." Percival joked softly, before sighing and looking at the magizoologist who was looking away, cheeks red.

“I love you. I want to be with you.” Percival said suddenly and Newt’s eyes widened as his gaze whipped over to Percival. “I know I messed that up by sending you away. I didn’t want to hurt you...I didn’t want to hurt you any further than you had gone through. Which from what your mother, my sister, and if I asked anyone else told me, hurt you more than any curse could have done.”
“Wait, when did you speak with my-”

“My point is,” Percival interrupted, “that I know now that what I did wasn’t what I should have done.”

Newt swallowed noisily.

“What I should have done was stay with you. And I’ve suffered for it. I haven’t been sleeping. At least well. My appetite pretty much gone, and I’ve made about five trainees cry in the past month because I’ve snapped at them.” Percival said. “But you suffered too.And...I can’t keep denying that I miss you. So damn much.”

Newt blinked several times, the burning in his eyes growing now.

“And I know that you have every right to say no, especially after all the grief I put you through...but please, let me stay by your side.”

Newt’s jaw dropped and he stared at Percival with wide eyes.

“You don’t have to give me an answer right now, but I-”

“Even though I’m me?”

Percival stopped, staring at Newt.

“I’m...awkward. I don’t socialize incredibly well with people. I prefer running headfirst into danger especially when a creature is in danger,” Newt said, “and that drives people mad. I...I’m not this damsel that will always need rescuing, and I don’t know if I know where I’ll wind up. I...I…”

“It can be here, in America, South America, or even Timbuktu...” Percival said with a laugh, and Newt responded with a watery chuckle, “the point is wherever you go, I’ll either be right there with you, or waiting for you to come back home.”

Newt blinked several times, eyes watering as Percival watched him

“I love you.” Percival repeated and Newt let out a sniff.

“I love you too.” Newt finally replied, his voice heavy with tears, and the tension left Percival’s shoulders, a bright smile on his face. A smile that took years off of his shoulders, that made him years younger.
It was an interesting sight, one he might have to try and witness a few more times to se-

Newt’s thoughts vanished away on quiet feet as Percival pulled him in, pressing his mouth to his.

Perhaps Dumbledore was right... love was stronger than most forms of magic.

But Newt couldn’t find it in him to care if he was right. All he cared about was the man in his arms right then and there.

And that was fine with him.

Chapter Text

He had gotten in late, almost two in the morning. Honestly it surprised him that the door creaking open is what dragged him from his slumber. He blinked wearily, shifting in bed. Warmth pressed up against him and he opened his eyes further, smiling at the man that was curled up to him, still apparently trapped in sleeps hold. The soft creak of the door opening further had him stiffening, hand reaching for his wand. When a small form peered inside and he relaxed, letting Credence continue the belief that they were both asleep, tiptoeing quietly in.

Newt sighed softly, snuggling into the covers and Credence froze, staring at the bed. When neither of them moved further, he continued his silent path towards their bed. He climbed as quietly as he could onto a nearby chair where Newt’s coat was hanging on and leapt forward.

Newt turned onto his back, and caught the boy in midair, earning a squeal from the younger boy.

“Good morning, Credence.” Newt said with a smile. “It’s quite early.”

“Today’s the wedding!!”

Percival chuckled.

“Duly noted.”

Credence squirmed in Newt’s hold, the man smiling brightly as the young boy giggled. Distantly they heard a very distinct cry and Percival was already sitting up before Newt twitched, grabbing the prosthetic, clicking it on with ease. He left the warmth of the bed and ambled down the hall, peering inside the one room and smiling as he locked onto the infant who was clinging to the side of the crib, staring at the door intently.

“Well good morning my little rose.” He said and she gurgled, bouncing on her feet. “Did you sleep well?”

She cooed, giggling as he strode over and wrapped his arm around her and hoisted her up. Tiny fingers grabbed at his nose, babbling before she giggled again, squealing as he pressed a kiss to her cheek.

He ambled back to their room, watching with a gentle smile at the domestic bliss of Newt sitting up as Credence rambled on and on about the events that day.

Six months.

It had been six months since he had gone to England. Six months since he had reunited with Newt. Honestly, these six months had probably been the happiest he had been in the past two years. There were still loose ends that needed to be tied up, wrinkles that needed to be ironed out. He couldn’t keep doing the several weeks in America and then work from the Ministry in England for a few weeks, even if it was working at the moment.

He didn’t want to keep missing milestones with Rosalind. He wanted to see them firsthand, not be surprised when he got home.

Newt smiled brightly as Percival sat down on the edge of the bed, brushing the longer curls from Rosie’s face.

“Seems the idea of an early morning did not escape them.” Percival said with a yawn.

“As though you weren’t already awake?” Newt replied and Percival smirked, and leaned over to kiss him.

“Well might as well get ready.”

Newt smiled, before tugging lightly on his sleep shirt, kissing Percival gently again.

“Might as well.”


“Credence, make sure the niffler isn’t trying to take anything! We don’t need another New York incident.!”

“Okay Ma!”

Percival chuckled as he finished tying his own tie, listening to Rosie babbling while Newt dressed her. The infant blew a raspberry, shaking tiny fists in the air.

“Is that right? Not a fan of the color?” Newt asked and Percival snorted

“Is she being picky again?”

“No. Rosie regurgitated her breakfast on it. I keep telling my mother that darker dresses make it noticeable, but she’s so insistent.” Newt argued and Percival chuckled.

“Where did your mother even decide on a color like that? I would have thought blue for Ravenclaw.”

Newt snorted.

“What makes you think Hogwarts goes and chooses their house colors?”

“So...you’re not thinking of that yellow dress, hm?”

Percival smirked as color crossed over Newt’s face.

“I’ll help get her dressed. Why don’t you help Credence?”

“Why? He’s-”

“Maaaaa!!! The niffler got my clip tie again.”

Newt let out a long suffering groan that Percival grinned at as the younger man rushed out of the room. He turned back to look at Rosie.

“Hhhmm...dealing with creatures who are pilfering pieces of their suits or helping a little princess like you get dressed. Who’s the lucky one here?” He said as he finished dressing Rosie, who squirmed, kicking her tiny feet as she stared up at him. She gave a gummy smile, hands stretching towards him. “I think I am.” He teased with a smile, picking her up. Her fist went back to her mouth, gnawing on it as she stared at him innocently.

A kiss to her cheek released a squeal and giggle from the tiny girl, and Percival’s smile grew.

“There you go.” Percival said as they exited the room. A few moments later he had climbed down the ladder to the suitcase, the now familiar sounds of the creatures inside washing over them.

“Any luck?” He called out as Newt sighed.

“Thankfully yes. I had to give a knut, but he took the trade.”

Percival snorted.

“Where’s Credence?”

“He’s just about done getting ready. The mooncalves wanted a little more of his attention.”

“And you?”

“Making sure everyone is fed so we don’t have any guests coming along and causing trouble. Wouldn’t do much good if Jacob’s family is introduced to magic like he was.”

“Not exactly what I meant, but that’s good too.” Percival chuckled as Rosie cooed, stretching a tiny hand towards Newt, who beamed, walking over.

“Hello sweetheart.” He said and Rosie smiled, giggling sweetly. “My you look lovely.”

“Was there any doubt?” Percival asked.

“Well with you dressing her?”

“Newt.” Percival warned and Newt smirked, leaning over and kissing him lightly.

“You know what I meant, Love.”

“Maybe. Might need more convincing.” He replied and Newt answered with another kiss. Rosie made a high-pitched squeal, clearly opposing her fathers’ affections. They both looked over at her and chuckled.

“Feeling left out, love?” Newt cooed, pressing a kiss on one cheek, while Percival kissed the other. The infant squirmed, giggling, before making a very familiar grunting sound. Newt sniffed, before moving away and looking at Rosie with a smirk.

“I think she just soiled her nappy. And since you insist on dressing her...”

Percival let out a groan as Rosie cooed softly and the older man pivoted heading back towards her room. He thought he heard Newt said ‘lucky one indeed’ but the roar of the nundu drowned anything else out.


The wedding was small and simple. They couldn’t invite a whole lot of people.Queenie and Tina didn’t have many family members left, and the few that were there were not supportive of the union. Jacob’s family was small. Still the joy was obvious between Jacob and Queenie, that Newt couldn’t help but smile as the two kissed, clapping along with the others. Rosalind clapped along, though he was sure that she had no idea as to what she was clapping at.

It was rather adorable, if Newt was being honest with himself.

Which was why he barely let her go throughout the entire reception as he wandered around, keeping with polite conversation with those that stopped him, glancing around trying to find Percival among the throng of muggles and wizards alike.

“Dragot for your thoughts?”

Newt spun around and grinned as Queenie walked over to them, looking dazzling in her wedding dress.

“Nothing really. Just looking for Percy, that’s all.”

“I think he had to talk to Theseus about something, but he should be around soon.”

Rosie began squirming, babbling loudly as Newt resituated her on his lap. Queenie chuckled.

“Seems like she’s having fun.” Queenie hummed.

“Yes. I’d let her down, but I’m worried about her being stepped on. It’s not like there are a lot of babies around right now.”

“Is she allowed to crawl around inside your case?”

Newt glanced around, before offering a sheepish grin.

“Yes, but you didn’t hear that from me.”

Queenie chuckled before Newt sighed.

“I know she’ll need to be interacting with children her age, but it’s difficult right now.”

“I understand that. But don’t worry, soon Rosie will have a friend to play with.”

“Well yes, that’d be won-” Newt paused, blinking before turning to look at Queenie, who smiled secretly, pressing a hand over her abdomen.

“...Are you? Really?”

She nodded, eyes glimmering with joy.

“Don’t tell Jacob just yet.” Queenie said with a bright smile. “It’s going to be a surprise. And I don’t want people assuming that’s why we married.”

“No, I understand.” Newt said, laughing softly, as he resituated Rosie. “Queenie, I’m so happy for you.”

“Thank you.” She said with a smile, taking a sip of tea. Rosie reached and grabbed onto Newt’s nose, babbling incoherently and giggling as Newt went cross-eyed.

“You are a wonderful father.”

Newt hummed softly, kissing Rosie’s forehead.

“I think every single one of my children see me as a mummy than a father.” He commented. Queenie smirked, glancing at Percival who was helping Credence to another piece of cake.

“Not that you really mind being that hm?”

Newt smiled softly.

“I’m happy for you, Newt. Truly.”

“Thank you, Queenie.”

Queenie smiled before looking up.

“Director Graves, there you are! We were wondering where you went?”

“We? Gossiping about me, are we?” the older man said, brow rising and his mouth twitching into a smirk.

“Never.” Queenie giggled and Newt smiled. “Newt, why don’t I hold onto Rosie for a little bit. I’m sure Director Graves could go for a single dance, hm?” She said after a moment. Newt blushed brightly.

“I don’t...I mean...you don’t have to Per-”

A soft smile crossing Percival’s face silenced the magizoologist and when the older man offered his hand, Newt gave Rosie to Queenie and gingerly took the hand, being pulled away from them and onto the dance floor.

“We meet again.”

“Mhm.” Percival said with a smile, running a thumb over his knuckles. Newt grinned.

“I’m glad their wedding went well. Queenie and Jacob deserve that with all the trouble they’ve had to go through.” Newt said as he glanced around, spotting Credence with Jacob and smiling as the boy was munching happily on some cake saying something that had the muggle laughing brightly, ruffling the little boys hair.

“Was that a subtle jab at me, Love?” Percival asked. Newt smiled impishly.

“Never.”

Percival hummed his response, before Newt let out a gasp when Percival pulled him towards him. “Percy?”

“Just missed you.”

Newt snorted.

“We were quite busy. Me making sure my creatures didn’t get out. You keeping my brother in check...”

“True...though it looks like Ms. Goldstein can take care of that now.” Percival said. Newt glanced over at where his brother was dancing with Tina.

“So what did you need to discuss with my brother? New case?”

Percival hummed.

“Not exactly. I had a discussion with Seraphina a month ago, and just needed to see how things were going on Theseus’s side.”

Newt cocked his head to the side.

“Oh? What’s that?”

Percival smiled.

“Transferring to the auror department in the Ministry of Magic. Your brother agreed to it. I still have a few more months going back and forth, but I think Kimbley will be a wonderful Director for the MACUSA Security Department.”

Newt froze, staring at him as the music continued to play in the background. Percival’s smile grew as he still as well. The music played around them, the band changing to another song, a muggle song Blue Skies, filled the air.

“Transfer?...Percy, you don’t-”

“I know I don’t have to. I want to.” Percival interrupted, before glancing over to where the children…their children were. “I don’t want to keep missing moments with them. Milestones...everything. I don’t want to be apart from you every few weeks and leave you with them all alone, missing moments with you.”

Newt’s face turned a bright red and he swallowed roughly.

“It wouldn’t have been a bother…” He murmured. Percival smiled.

“I knew you’d say that, but I disagree. I want to be here with you, Newt. So I’ll stay here. With you.” He trailed with a grin. Newt swallowed.

“Is...is that a proposal?” He asked weakly. Percival grinned.

“It’s practically an order.”

Newt smiled, tears burning the corner of his eyes before he smiled back.

“I think I can handle that.” He managed, before Percival pulled him closer. “I love you, you know that right?” He asked, cheeks burning and Percival smiled, tugging him .

“I do, Newt. I do. And wouldn’t you know it, I love you too.” Percival said softly, before he pulled him in, pressing his mouth to his as the faint sounds of the song fill the air, and feeling and weight of the two broken when Credence hurried over with Rosie, grinning from ear to ear as the two men pulled apart. Newt and Percival grinned, gripping each other’s hands, waiting to see what adventures lay ahead of them now.