|Beth H (bethbethbeth) wrote in hp_beholder,|
@ 2012-04-12 13:06:00
|Entry tags:||beholder_2012, dean thomas, fic, het, millicent bulstrode, millicent/dean|
FIC: "Smudge" for lash_larue
Pairings: Dean Thomas/Millicent Bulstrode
Word Count: 1800
Warnings/Content Information (Highlight to View): *none *.
Summary: Every morning the sun illuminates Dean's favourite subject, and every morning he sketches her.
Author's Notes: This is not at all what I started with, not even the Gryffindor I started with, but Dean insisted that he wanted Millicent. I do hope you like it, lash_larue. Many thanks to C for bolstering my confidence, and L for making me better.
The morning sun always hit the window seat in the most interesting ways. It didn’t matter whether it was mid-summer with not a cloud in the sky, or the dreariest of autumns when the rain seemed unrelenting, the light drifting into the bedroom was always perfect for his morning sketch.
This morning there was snow on the ground, but the light was strangely warm. It fell over his shoulder onto the sketch pad on his knees and stretched to caress the curves of the woman on his bed. There was a smudge of paint on her nose and he smiled as he dutifully recorded it on the image he was creating. He moved his thumb across the paper, the charcoal smudging under his touch. There was another mark on her breast, this one of a handprint, and he wondered that she'd let him come to bed without cleaning off properly.
He liked it. It reminded him of the first morning he'd drawn her. Until Millicent, he had kept his morning sketches to the view from the window, recording the changing seasons in the willow and the creek and the way the sun painted them in light and colour. Now, the view inside was much more interesting.
That morning had been spring, with patchy clouds and scattered light.
Millicent had been grey.
Like this morning, there had been a smudge. It was the smudge that had first caught his eye.
It was Luna's first big show, and he arrived on opening night knowing exactly what to expect. She had made plaster moulds of all her friends and painted images on them. The cast of his body was the grey of stone and steel bars and the only colour was the gerbera that seemed to be growing from his mouth. A cry for freedom; powerful and strangely beautiful, but he had no interest in thinking of Malfoy Manor.
He turned away to look at the mould of Harry, until he saw it move and realised it was Harry.
"She said it would give her opening night colour," the man said, a little defensively, when he noticed Dean looking. "It's just a bit of a laugh."
"I don't know, Harry." Harry was painted head to toe in white and grey, and coupled with the pose, he looked eerily like the marble 'Boy-Who-Lived' statue in Diagon Alley that he hated so much. "I think Luna's making a profound statement about heroes being human and ordinary people becoming heroes."
"Bugger off," Harry replied, glaring at the Prophet's art reporter who was scribbling nearby.
"Sure. I think I'll say hello to Ginny." He could see her in bronze paint over on the other side of the room.
"Stay away from my girl, Thomas!"
"Later, Harry," he said, walking away.
He walked towards Ginny, enjoying the idea of winding Harry up, but his eye strayed to a gargoyle crouching by the door. If it was Luna's work, then it was exquisite. An interesting contrast, the grey paint looking like hard granite, yet she had chosen a woman with curves - a larger woman – to pose for the piece. The contrast of soft and hard worked very well. If he hadn't posed for one of the moulds himself, he would have sworn that Luna had carved the woman's face from stone, but it was only paint that shadowed those cheeks, giving the face a monstrous visage. He suddenly noticed there was an imperfection in the art; a smudge, on the gargoyle's thigh.
He stepped forward, reaching a hand out to trace it, surprised that Luna wouldn't fix it before putting the art on display. He was millimetres from the thigh when the gargoyle turned its head and bared its teeth.
He didn't yelp. He was sure he didn't yelp.
He may have splashed champagne down his front, but as a wizard, that was easily taken care of.
"Look. Don't touch."
He still wasn't sure how they had moved from there to looking and touching, but there was a glare from her, a wide-eyed compliment from him and an Apparition straight to his bedroom once the paint on her face was smeared across his own.
"Why did you keep staring at me tonight?" she asked, after he had her posed in his bed.
"The imperfection," he replied, and was surprised to see her tense and begin to curl into herself as hurt flashed in her eyes. "This one here," he said quickly, pointing to it, "where the paint got smudged. It was the only hint that you were human, and not an untouchable work of art."
He could almost see her blush through the paint.
When he woke the next morning, there were smudges across both of them, but they did not deter him from capturing her in parchment and charcoal.
He smiled as she shifted in her sleep. She groped for the quilt that she always kicked off in the night and pulled it up to her chin, cold now without his body heat at her back. He stopped his original sketch, turned the page and began again, from the wrinkled nose to the fist curled under her chin. He chuckled lightly, not worrying that she'd wake up. Millicent always lived to her own rhythm, and nothing could wake her until she was ready.
He hadn't even been able to love her until she was ready.
Sex had been acceptable. She was willing to Apparate into his bedroom at her leisure and push him down, straddle him and take her pleasure from his body, grinning at his moans and the frantic thrusting of his hips.
She hadn't been willing to hear his endearments. Had grasped his hands when they moved to caress her curves, pulling them away and placing them firmly on her hips. As she neared orgasm she would forget, and he could lift himself up and capture her nipple in his lips, feeling the weight of her breast against his cheek. She was the Empress he remembered from Trelawney's Tarot Deck. She was Botticelli's Venus, the sort of soft that melted against his own hard lines.
She was perfect, but she would not let him tell her so.
One night, she had come to him, tired from work and wrapped in a cloak. He’d undressed her carefully, and pushed her onto her back, running his fingers through her hair so that it fanned out beneath her.
"What do you see?" she asked breathlessly, as he kissed his way up her leg.
"A goddess," he said, as he licked the crease at the top of her thigh. "A work of art."
She opened her mouth to protest and he quickly moved up her body and covered her mouth with his own.
"I see you," he murmured. "Only you."
Then she let him touch every inch of her, trace every line of her with hands and lips and fingers, as he had so many times before with graphite and ink and charcoal.
"Love," he said as he finally entered her, feeling her limbs quivering beneath him. "Love," he said as her legs wrapped around him and his arms slipped behind her, one hand cradling her head. "Love," he whispered as her body cradled his, and they moved as one.
For the first time, she let him.
The light behind him had grown stronger and, as he watched, Millicent began to stir, the covers moving as she stretched under them. Her eyes opened slowly and she looked straight at him. He quickly moved to the clean side of the page, and began to record the tender look in her eyes. His Millicent was not generally soft. She was not generally tender. His grandmother described her as 'tough as old nails', but he didn't care. She could put up her walls and cover her heart with granite as much as she liked.
As long as here, on his sketchpad and in their bed, she let him see every part of her.
When she first started staying the night regularly, he would finish sketching before she woke up. The first time she woke to find him staring intently, all she could do was glare. And the second. And the third.
She didn't stop until after she saw the pictures.
He'd left her sleeping and moved to the ensuite to take a shower. When he came back out to get dressed, he'd found her in his spot by the window, leafing through the sketchpad. Her finger was moving along the image, making him glad he was a wizard and could do protection charms on the paper to stop it smudging.
"Who is it?" she asked, and he let out a soft chuckle.
"It's you. It's all you."
She shook her head mutely and he didn't recognise her for a second. Somehow, this was the woman he saw during the night, who melted under his hands. This was the woman he sketched in the mornings, a soft smile betraying her pleasant dreams. This was not the woman he saw in daylight, insisting there was nothing between them. Even as she let him in at night, she still kept her heart protected during the day, but in the morning light that normally caressed her sleeping form, she looked vulnerable.
He sat beside her and traced a line over the picture – the dip of her waist and the curve of her hips. "Do you not recognise yourself?" He moved his other hand to trace her body – the dip of her waist and the curve of her hips. She flipped the pages over. There were dozens by then; she had been staying the night for months. Some showed her body draped in cotton sheets. Some focused on one feature – her lashes resting against her cheek, the hand curled into a fist, her hair lying in waves across her shoulder.
She paused at an image of her nipple, tightened to hardness against the cold. "Do you see me as just parts?"
"No." He flipped a couple of pages to find an image of her stretched out, her entire body lovingly rendered, from the hand resting above her head, to the gentle curve of her feet. "I see all of you, and I see that each part is beautiful."
He didn't know why the words worked that day, but she pulled him back to bed and never put her walls up around him again.
Now, she smiled that smile that was his alone.
"What are you looking at?" she asked.
He put the sketchpad down and walked back to the bed. He lay down beside her and his fingers left smudges of charcoal across her cheek, but he knew she didn't care.
"You, Millicent. Always you."