|Kay_ aka_Ari (kayakaari) wrote in severus_sighs,|
@ 2010-02-03 19:43:00
|Current mood:||but not frowning!|
|Entry tags:||fic, member: ari, rating: r|
Title: Love Everlasting
Pairing: Severus/ Remus
Word Count: 6461
Warnings: None for now but death later (not main pairing).
Summary: After Remus convinces Lily to set him up with Severus, they begin a secret affair; but secrets breed lies and lies breed distrust. Fatal mistakes, other lovers, 2 wars and decades later, will their love be everlasting? Part 1: 1975-'81; Part 2: '93-'09
A/N: The first four chapters are the longest, and, to use use's mrscakeakajane's euphemism, most 'involved'. If you find it heavy reading, chapters become more focused and less 'involved' later ;) I dunno, I just felt like telling Bella and Moldy Short's story a bit. I promise not to let my muse get my quite so sidetracked for the rest of the story :).
Regulus couldn’t wait for school to start. He had overheard Potter and Sirius discussing Remus’ secret ‘friend’, the mysterious Mr. Hyde. He hadn’t heard much else though.
Finally locating Severus in an otherwise empty carriage, he joined the sullen character. Only Severus wasn’t looking so much sullen as he was gazing longingly at the platform. Following the gaze, he saw his brother and Lupin greeting Potter and Pettigrew. Swallowing a growl, he sat very closely to Severus.
“Hey Severus, those idiots, huh? My brother and Potter spent the last few weeks gossiping about Lupin’s new lover,” he claimed maliciously although, as far as he had heard, Hyde, whoever he was, was just Lupin’s new friend.
Severus turned away from the window. His mask fell and his expression became indecipherable. He nodded in greeting then opened a book. Regulus sighed, disappointed.
Lily chatted with Susan Fitzgerald, a Ravenclaw from her year. She had to admit that the voyage to Platform 9 ¾ was lonely without Severus. She missed him but she wasn’t sure if her best friend Severus existed anymore. He’d always been a little boastful and his frank words cut like a knife but he was never evil. He was not like Potter and Black and certainly not like his Slytherin peers, Mulciber and Avery. But sulking and saying mean things to and about the people who had hurt him or provoking people he disliked with cruel jibes had been his primary method of revenge before. He had not been one for violence. He was quick with hexes and never hesitated to defend himself it was true, but he was more likely to scorn the helpless than attack them. And her Severus was a stickler for the rules. Her Severus would never have broken the Secrecy Act; he was more likely to seek out the rule breakers and report them.
“Remy!” she greeted excitedly, embracing the startled boy with a huge hug. “How are you?”
James and Sirius exchanged confused looks. Since when was Evans friends with Remus?
“Lily!” Remus’ greeting was drowned by the warning horn and the James’ parents’ instructing them to board the train quickly. “Will you and Susan join us?”
As she went to bed that night, Lily was surprised to realize that she had enjoyed Potter and Black’s company. They were less obnoxious than usual and she could finally see the boys who had befriended Remus in spite of his lycanthropy. She couldn’t help but think that it was a pity that they’d gotten off on the wrong foot. The boys were clever and had a quick wit and a fascination for hexes matched only by Severus; they could certainly have been friends in another life.
As for James, he could be quite debonair when he wished to be and, she couldn’t help but notice today, he was also quite handsome.
The first two weeks of school were complicated for Severus. Seeing Lily everyday and having her ignore him hurt. Seeing Lily openly socializing with Remus when his relationship with the latter remained a secret affair was painful. It was seeing Lily becoming somewhat friendly with the Gryffindor Gang that drove him to distraction. He felt betrayed. How could she befriend the boys who had bullied him for the past five years?
At least he had Regulus. He and Reg had been friends ever since the boy had been sorted into Slytherin but he’d never thought much of the young man. Yet it was Regulus who always seemed to be there to comfort him lately. Where he and Lily had had study sessions before, he now assisted the average but willing student. He had to admit to himself though, that the most attractive part of Regulus wasn’t the boy himself, although he was handsome. The Black family had an amazing library. Many books not available in the Hogwarts library or which he was forbidden to read in the restricted section were in the Black library. Regulus frequently loaned him all sorts of books which kept him entertained for hours.
Which was just as well. Lily and Remus now studied together at their spot by the lake and, Regulus had told him, Potter and Black now sometimes joined in. He had met with Remus only three times since term started. He had requested that they spend the upcoming weekend together but once again Remus claimed that Potter and Black had invited him out first. They hadn’t fought this time but that was only because Severus had made up his mind to investigate.
A nervous first year Hufflepuff stood staring at Severus as he worked in the Potions lab during a free period. He turned and scowled at the girl who began to tremble.
“What do you want?” he snapped.
She ran into the room, dropped a note on the table and ran off just as quickly. Checking the note for hexes, he read, ‘My dear Mr. Hyde, I do hope that you are not too disappointed about this weekend. I will miss you. In fact I miss you already, Jekyll’. He crushed the note but did not incinerate it. He was both annoyed and secretly pleased.
Regulus shook with impotent frustration. He had been seducing Severus for two weeks now and the boy had yet to kiss him. And now he had found a note in Severus’ robe pocket from Lupin. Hyde and Jekyll indeed! He wondered where they’d come up with those silly names. He would never have Severus as long as Lupin was around.
Spotting Sirius and some silly Ravenclaw girl snogging in a courtyard below, he smirked. He transfigured a duplicate Chocolate Frog Collectible Card he’d been using as a bookmark into sealed note addressed to Jekyll.
“A half-blood this time, brother? Well at least she’s an improvement over your usual Mudblood fare I suppose,” Regulus sniffed.
“Shut up!” Sirius jumped to his feet, wand drawn. Always quick to draw his wand, that one, and always quick to anger. It worked every time.
“Going to hex me, then? Your own dear brother? And all for a half-blood?”
“Shut. Up!” Sirius yelled, poking his younger brother in the chest after each word.
Exaggerating the impact of each hit, Regulus staggered backwards and dropped the note, knowing his brother’s eagle eye would spot it.
“Jekyll? Who’s Jekyll? Why do you have a note addressed to Jekyll?” Sirius asked, clearly agitated.
“It’s not mine.”
“Obviously, REG-U-LUS. What I want to know is what you’re doing with it.”
Regulus shrugged disdainfully and reached for the note. Sirius, predictably, held it away and collared him. “You’d better tell me why you’ve got a note addressed to someone else, Regulus.”
“Or we might just be forced to report you to a Professor,” the Ravenclaw joined in. Regulus almost giggled with glee. Perfect!
Pretending to be nervous, he ‘confessed’, “It’s not mine. Severus had it, I don’t know where he got it from but he accidentally dropped it. I was going to the library to return it to him. You better give it back to me to give to him or you’ll be the one with someone else’s note!” he tried again to reach for the note.
“Snivellus! I should have guessed,” Sirius scowled. “No, I know Jekyll. I’ll deliver the message to him. Poor Snivelly, he’ll be so upset he lost his stolen loot. Now go away.”
Regulus left. He wasn’t sure his plan had worked quite as he’d wanted. It didn’t seem like Sirius planned to confront Severus again. With a disappointed sigh, he watched Sirius slip the note into his robes before he reversed the transfiguration on the note. He wasn’t sure how Sirius would explain the missing ‘note’ but he didn’t care.
Regulus was jubilant. He wasn’t sure how but it seemed his plan had worked beautifully! His sources had informed him that Sirius was overheard ranting about some note that Severus had stolen from Remus and was plotting his revenge. Then supposedly he’d tricked Severus in to going somewhere dangerous. Regulus highly doubted that Severus could be fooled by his brother but he didn’t care. The important thing was that after a week of self-imposed solitary confinement, Severus had begun to spend increasing amounts of time with him and yesterday Severus had finally responded to his subtle flirting and kissed him. Life was beautiful!
Severus stabbed viciously at a leaf with his stick. He was at the edge of the Forbidden Forest foraging for Potions ingredients. Why was his life so complicated?
He sat abruptly on a fallen log and took a deep breath. He thought back to a week ago when he’d been made a fool.
He had spotted Remus- no, Lupin and Madam Pomfrey headed towards the Whomping Willow. He had never been one of the students who attempted to dare the tree back in his early years at Hogwarts but he recalled that a boy had almost been killed there. Or something like that. At any rate, the tree was now forbidden territory. So why was Madam Pomfrey taking his then boyfriend there? He’d initially followed them out of concerned curiosity. He worried whether Remus had begun self-mutilating again- he’d noticed a fairly recent scar that his lover must have gotten over the summer break but Remus had dismissed it as nothing. Yet now he was with the school’s Medi-Witch.
He was surprised to see the tree halt and allow them to disappear somewhere near its roots. He was even more surprised to have Black approach him congenially. That should have been his first sign that something was very wrong but he was so distracted with concern for his boyfriend and curiosity about the unknown that Black’s words had completely disarmed him of his natural instincts and usual skepticism.
“Looking for Jekyll, are you?”
His face a calm mask he asked, “Jekyll?”
“Yes, you know,” he said, dragging the word out in a conspiratorial manner, “Jekyll. He went to Hogsmeade. There’s a secret passage under the Whomping Willow. All you have to do is press that knot over there… if you can get to it.”
His second clue should have been the smile on Black’s face as he left. He had been too curious about the passage and too happy that Remus had told Black about them to think things through.
He shuddered as the sounds of the werewolf howling rang in his ears.
He scowled as he recalled Dumbledore refusing to punish anyone for the attempt on his life. It was clear to him that it had been all one elaborate prank on the part of the Gryffindor Gang. How else would Black have known Jekyll was his secret name for Remus? Lupin had promised him that he hadn’t revealed the name to anyone and yet Black knew. Too kind hearted as always, the headmaster had refused to expel Black, claiming that it would draw attention to Lupin’s predicament and endanger the latter’s life. He called Lupin innocent and Potter a hero. Potter! The headmaster had even told him that he now owed Potter a life debt! Potter, Black and Lupin had plotted to murder him and he ended up owing his life to Potter. It was an outrage!
The more Severus thought about it, the more convinced he became that Lupin had made an ass out of him. He sneered. He’d done his crying, love was for fools. Now he knew better, he would never make that mistake again. He would get his revenge on that lot, oh yes he would.
He smirked as he stood, noticing a promising patch of flora nearby. He had already begun his revenge. He would start with Black and he knew just how to do it. He would seduce Regulus and this relationship he would certainly flaunt to the world. He briefly felt guilty about using his friend that way; it wasn’t Reg’s fault he was related to Black. He suffocated his conscience. The one good thing about losing Lily as a friend was that he no longer heard her voice nagging in the back of his head restraining him with silly Gryffindorish ideas of morality.
Remus Lupin lay on his bed in Gryffindor tower, the drapes pulled all around him creating a dark cocoon. He had cried for hours, possibly days and still it felt like his heart would break. He wasn’t sure he had the strength to cry any more.
“Remy?” Lily called as she gently pulled the drapes aside. Sitting cross-legged on the bed near to his feet, she closed the drapes and flicked her wand creating a soft light in the cocoon. “Remy? I brought you something to eat.” He didn’t respond. “Oh Remy, I know it hurts but you’ve got to eat something. You’ve hardly eaten in the last week.”
“I almost killed him, Lil’ and now he hates me. I don’t know what’s worse, that I almost killed him or that he refuses to have anything to do with me,” he sighed, sitting up and chewing on the sandwich she pressed into his mouth. “On some level I think I always suspected that he would not accept the real me but the reality still hurts. The fear I saw in his eyes when I tried to apologize… oh Lily,” he sobbed, the tears spilling uncontrollably, “and now… now… surely you saw him outside the Charms classroom this morning…”
Lily ground her teeth and hugged her friend. She may not be on speaking terms with Severus any more but she had half a mind to go give him an earful. He could fool Sirius and Remus but she knew that he was hurting. She could tell that he wasn’t in love with Regulus. He was using the boy to spite Remus. Severus Snape had turned into a one man heartbreak hotel. Who’d have thought!
“Severus, how would you like to go to a Halloween masked ball with me at Malfoy Manor?” At Severus’ hesitation he added, “Lucius would love to have you there.”
“I don’t dance.”
“I can teach you. You only have to dance once anyway. Please,” Regulus begged, sweetening the deal with a kiss.
Severus entered the marble foyer of Malfoy Manor. He was impressed and overwhelmed by the grandeur but he tried not to show it. Although Regulus had bought him an elegant gown and dressed him for the event (even convincing his older cousin Narcissa to style Severus’ hair which was lighter and healthier looking than he had thought possible), he still felt underdressed.
“Severus, Regulus, please do come in,” Lucius welcomed them, offering them champagne that his attendant elf held on a tray above his head.
Taking a flute each, they entered the grand drawing room. Severus was awed. He hoped his eager observations were not too obvious. He wasn’t surprised to see many of his fellow Slytherins, past and present, mingling around the room. He felt himself being observed on several occasions but could not locate the source. Regulus clung to his arm like an excited teenage girl, introducing him to everyone.
“Severus! How pleasant to see you here,” Professor Slughorn greeted him.
“Professor Slughorn, sir, I hadn’t expected to see you here.” Even as he said the words, Severus knew them to be foolish. Slughorn was a sycophant of the highest order. Of course he was at a Malfoy event.
“Professor, how wonderful to see you!” Regulus joined them, his eyes glowing.
“Regulus, dear, do mind your decorum,” a beautiful woman chided.
“Sorry Mother. Mother, Father, you know Professor Slughorn and may I present to you my companion, Severus Snape.”
Severus bowed to the Blacks, accepting Mrs. Black’s gloved hand for a kiss.
“Snape… Snape… I am not sure that I know your people,” she drawled, eyeing him speculatively. “Did your people attend Hogwarts?”
“Only my mother, ma’am, Eileen Prince,” Severus prayed she wouldn’t ask about his father. He was relieved when Professor Slughorn interrupted.
“Hmm, Eileen Prince… Yes, I remember her. Not quite as brilliant as you though, was she? No, no… now Severus here is a brilliant student. He has an amazing instinct for Potions. I was quite happy when he began assisting young Regulus here. Hmm, yes. Shame you can’t do the same for Sirius though. Smart boy but easily distracted, hmm,” he mused, looking distractedly around the room.
“Prince? Do we know any Princes dear?” Mrs. Black asked her husband.
“Good evening, my Lord and Lady Black,” a handsome young man invited himself into their little group. Professor Slughorn paled. “Is this your son?” he asked, smiling at Regulus although Severus had the distinct impression he was being scrutinized somehow.
“Lord Voldemort,” Mrs. Black practically gushed, “Yes, this is my son Regulus.”
Lord Voldemort shook Regulus’ hand gracefully. Severus tried to maintain control of his facial muscles. He had heard about this man from the other Slytherins. He was known to be one of the greatest wizards alive. He had never imagined that he would be so fortunate as to meet the gentlemen though. He memorized the features on the handsome face.
He felt Regulus’ grip tighten on his arm and wondered if he had been staring. “Lord Voldemort, it is an honour to meet you, sir. May I introduce to Severus Snape, my companion,” Regulus emphasized the last word.
Lord Voldemort smiled and presented his hand to Severus who shook it. “Severus,” Voldemort said, his sibilants almost erotically obscene, “Professor Slughorn praises you highly. Are you a member of the Slug Club?”
“Good evening, my Lord,” Severus was relieved that his awe did not colour his voice. “Yes, sir, Professor Slughorn invited me to be a member of the Slug Club.” Brilliant, Severus, just brilliant. Your witty repartee is sure to impress.
“Walburga dear, isn’t that the Marquis de Roseau coming our way?” Mr. Black spoke for the first time.
“I have met the Marquis before so if you will excuse me, I wish to visit the refreshments. Perhaps, Severus, you will accompany me?”
“Regulus, where are you going, dear? Severus will be back soon. You must stay to be presented to the Marquis.”
Severus lay in his bed that night, his heart soaring. He was thrilled that he had gone to the party. True, Regulus was pouting and sulking at having been ignored all night but Severus hardly had a choice. Mrs. Black was suspicious of his background and Lord Voldemort wanted him around. His Lordship had spent the night bestowing Severus with almost undivided attention.
They had spoken of Hogwarts, Potions and the Dark Arts. He could practically feel the power humming from the handsome man. Lord Voldemort had introduced him to the art of Legilimency and Occlumency. He had expressed pleasured surprise at how quickly Severus had picked up the skills. He had confirmed that it was he who had been observing the younger man ever since his arrival. He claimed to have been impressed by Severus’ remarkable composure. Severus wasn’t sure about that since Voldemort had seen right through the façade but then, he had to admit, Lord Voldemort was clearly a powerful and talented man.
The rest of his fifth and sixth years were a mixed joy for Regulus. It was the end of Severus’ time at Hogwarts and they remained a couple the entire time. Now, however, Severus had graduated and was going to officially join the Death Eaters.
In spite of his initial wariness at the first meeting of Severus and Lord Voldemort, he had actively encouraged his lover to socialize more and more with the Death Eaters. For himself, he didn’t really care about the Death Eaters either way but he was under a lot of pressure to be the son Sirius never was. More than a passion for blood purity he craved his parents’ love and adoration and now the Death Eaters also provided him with a way to keep Severus from Lupin.
He floundered between moments of joy and anxiety whenever the Dark Lord favoured his lover. On the one hand he was proud of Severus and proud to be the partner of such an increasingly influential wizard. He and Cissy often spent hours boasting about the achievements made by their boyfriends. Of course Lucius had an advantage over Severus because he was older, more suave and wealthier but wherever he could, Regulus tried to even the scales between the peers. At any rate he knew that the Dark Lord seemed enchanted by Severus’ intelligence and natural abilities in the Dark Arts which was an advantage Lucius would never best.
On the other hand though, he worried whenever the Dark Lord sequestered himself and Severus at the get-togethers. Lord Voldemort was a handsome, charming, clever and powerful man. Regulus knew that Severus craved power and he always felt comparatively deficient in that area. He was a good wizard but just barely above average at most. He tried to compensate for his lack of power by learning all he could about the Dark Arts from his parents which had the dual outcomes of pleasing his parents and keeping his lover interested but it always seemed that the Dark Lord was one step ahead of him.
They had never kissed, at least, Severus had never mentioned it, but he couldn’t help but notice that sometimes, after a little tête-à-tête with the Dark Lord, his lover appeared horny. At those times, Severus would pull him away into some dark corner and ravish him with desperate kisses and frantic groping. He enjoyed those moments with Severus because they were uncharacteristic and rare and because it meant that, even if he was flirting with Severus, the Dark Lord either had not or could not satisfy the younger man.
Some days he felt so tired of all the work he put in to the relationship when it seemed that Severus did not appreciate it. Then some poor sop who’d just been a victim of his lover’s razor wit would question why on earth he would stay with such a misanthropic git and he would smile. With him, Severus was always gentle, his biting wit turned against the rest of the world. It made him feel special. In fact, by virtue of the fact that he was the only person in the school who seemed to be spared the viciousness, he knew Severus considered him special. Well, almost the only person… ever since whatever happened with Sirius and Severus, the latter acted almost as though the former and his colleagues did not exist. He thought he could feel a certain melancholy come over the sullen boy sometimes when he saw Evans and Lupin but he would quickly distract his lover with kisses or questions about the Dark Arts.
He had tried to turn Severus against those two once but the older boy had reacted furiously. The cold shoulder had lasted for almost two weeks and his lesson had been learnt. He could say horrible things about Black, Potter and Pettigrew- indeed against anyone else, but Evans and Lupin remained off-limits.
Horace Slughorn regarded his trophy wall with a certain amount of undisguised pride. Yes, his favourites, past and present, had done well. ‘Hmm, well, most of them,’ he thought, looking at a photograph of Tom Riddle. He hadn’t taken Tom off of the wall but only because, Dark Wizard or not, he was still quite powerful and becoming more and more influential as time passed.
Smiling, he moved Lily Evans’ photograph forward a place. The young Auror in training was doing quite well for herself. He frowned, much better than her former friend, Severus Snape. He had had such high hopes for the brilliant though morose student but it seemed like mother, like child. Eileen Prince had never been a candidate for his club but she had been good at other things… he seemed to recall her winning a trophy for something or other. Yet she’d run off and married a Muggle and a poor one at that, if Severus’ threadbare robes and borrowed second hand books were anything to go by.
Now her son had ignored all of the potentially influential job offers Slughorn had provided at his parties and, rumour had it, run off to join Tom and his gang. The old professor shuddered recalling the brilliant but dark mind that was Tom Riddle. He felt faint at the thought of two such brilliant minds combining in pursuit of dark glory.
Albus Dumbledore’s piercing blue eyes appeared in his mind’s eye. He flinched as he could imagine hearing the headmaster, ‘Horace, you do realize how potentially catastrophic this union could be, you know things that could change the course of history. It is your duty to share them with me’. No, he thought, it is my duty to protect myself, hedge my bets. I cannot risk choosing the wrong side. If Tom wins, he must not see me as the enemy. I will remain low and neutral. I am no Gryffindor hero.
Bellatrix Black smiled at her aunt. They were sitting in the parlour at Grimmauld Place with Cissy and Lucius Malfoy. She was bored and had only joined Cissy at their parents’ insistence that she chaperone them to Lucius’ official introduction to the Black family now that he and Cissy were engaged.
Biting a pumpkin pasty with more force than perhaps necessary, she hid a scowl. Cissy was engaged. She should be the one engaged! She was only relieved that at least her younger sister would not be allowed to get married before she did. It would serve Lucius right.
How had things gone so wrong? She was in love with Lord Voldemort and craved his attention. She had shown her willingness to do anything and everything he wanted but he never returned her affections. It was always Lucius to whom he would turn his attentions as the toady charmed his way up the Dark Lord’s ranks. Oh, she rose too, but the object of her affections regarded her as a good soldier instead of as a potential wife.
Unable to outwit Lucius, she had attempted to distract him by taking along little Cissy with her whenever the Dark Lord visited. Now they were engaged and she was no closer to bedding or wedding her lord. In fact, she had another competitor for his affections, that ugly boy, Severus Snape. She had been fond of Severus when Lucius had introduced her. Well, perhaps not fond per se, but he was tolerable and tales of the animosity between him and Cousin Sirius always proved good for a laugh. She did not trust him- how had he become so close to the Dark Lord so quickly? He had barely been marked and already he had been invited to dine, alone, with the Dark Lord. Twice, if her elf Ninny was to be believed.
Regulus entered the room and greeted his cousins and friend. Bellatrix barely bit back a contemptuous sneer. Useless. Bloody useless. She had used him much as she had used Cissy but where her sister had completely bewitched Lucius, her cousin’s hold over Snape was less certain.
With a sudden smile she called to him, “Regulus, cousin, how lovely to see you. Aunt Walburga, would you mind terribly if my dear cousin took me for a walk around the garden?”
“Of course not dear,” Walburga smiled prettily. “Don’t worry dear, you’ll find a man soon,” she added in a not so quiet whisper.
Bellatrix clench the fingers on her wand hand which were simply itching to hex the woman. Instead she smiled graciously and gripped tightly to Regulus’ arm.
“They are bloody nauseous, aren’t they?” Regulus smiled understandingly.
“Who? Oh, them. Yes, they are.”
“But, I take it, that’s not why you wanted to leave?”
“Not particularly, no,” she shrugged. “Tell me, cousin, how is your relationship with Severus going? What plans have you made to continue seeing each other now that he has left Hogwarts?”
“I think we are doing well,” he smiled weakly. “We have not yet discussed plans for next term though.”
“What? Good heavens boy, I thought you wanted to keep Severus. You must continue to see him regularly if you expect him to stick around. Men are sexual beings. If you are not there to satisfy his urges, do not imagine that he will not seek solace elsewhere.”
Regulus paled. “We haven’t had sex yet and he doesn’t seem to mind.”
Bellatrix blinked. Ninny had told her that the Dark Lord only bedded virgins of either sex. She herself was not a virgin; that ship had sailed many years ago. But then, she had thought, neither were any of the competition. She had never seen Severus with anyone else. Was he a virgin?
“Yes,” Regulus answered her question with a blush, “we both are. We do many other things but there has never been any actual penetration. I think Severus has wanted to on several occasions but I am not ready and he understands. He really is quite considerate, you know.”
Bellatrix did not hold back her sneer this time. “You’re not ready? Not ready? Foolish child! Poor ickle Reggie is not ready,” she taunted in a sing-song voice. “You had better be ready or be certain that you will lose him. None of the other Death Eaters are virgins, I assure you, and when the Dark Lord finds out, well…”
Regulus shivered in dread. He was not ready but he could not lose Severus. “Please Bella, don’t tell the Dark Lord, please! Give me the summer. You know Mother would never let me spend the night with Severus but he has promised to meet me at the first Hogsmeade week-end. I’ll do it then, I promise!”
“Oh cousin, would that I could. You know that. Two months is a very long time though,” she pretended to think. “I know!” she clapped excitedly, “I can do for you what I do for Cissy and Lucius. I tell you what, you just ask Aunt Walburga’s permission to go on a trip with your dear cousins next week. We can go to France- the Malfoys have a home there. Lucius will invite Severus- it will be perfect!”
“So soon,” he swallowed. At the scowl forming on her face he added quickly, “How can you be certain that Lucius will agree?”
“Lucius and Cissy would not turn down such an opportunity. They have recruited my assistance for far greater a price than an extending an invitation to you and Severus.”
“Where would you be? Wouldn’t it seem odd if you’re not there?”
“Don’t you worry about me,” her smile causing a cold shiver to run down his spine.
Tom Riddle aka Lord Voldemort aka the Dark Lord sat on a chair configured to look suspiciously like a throne. He looked at the crucified body of a dead Muggle girl as her crimson blood dripped into the silver lined stone bowl below. His eyes flashed red as he stroked her young face and brushed her long hair. She had been a good fuck, her terrified screams and useless pleas for mercy had thrilled in a way that few other things could.
The Dark Lord decanted the blood meticulously before using the remainder to smear the runes he had written on her skin with her own blood earlier that evening. Ritual sex magic was powerful. On its own rape give the rapist power over his victim. He had recognized this quite early on and had researched methods of harnessing that power. These days he satisfied natural sexual urges and fed his powers using this branch of dark magic. Through trial and error he had honed his preferences. Gender was irrelevant. Magical beings were the most valuable, especially Veelas, but they were also dangerous. He liked danger but he was not a fool. He had no intention of falling under a Veela’s spell or being infected by lycanthropy. Still, he was experimenting with ways in which his followers- the dispensable ones of course, could use rape to harness the power of these magical beings on his behalf. Witches and wizards were next; they were easy enough to control but too easily missed and, at this time, simply not worth the hassle. Surprisingly some Muggles had yielded more power than Squibs. He supposed it was because Squibs grew up knowing they were worthless while Muggles believed in their own superiority over the earth magic.
Victims had to be young but not too young; younger children simply did not have enough power while the elderly presented the same problem. After puberty but before middle age was ideal but teenagers were the best. Their vitality and fight were at their strongest and their naïve belief in their own immortality fed the magic beautifully. Indeed, the more arrogant and independent they were, the better.
With sudden unrestrained viciousness, Voldemort slammed the heavy bowl on to the corpse’s head. Bellatrix!
The foolish girl had spent the weekend at Boyle Lodge, the rambling mansion he had charmed some old Muggle biddy into bequeathing him before tricking her butler into killing her, supposedly for a £50,000 inheritance. Well, that was the motive the Muggle authorities had accused the silly man of. Arriving uninvited that Friday night, Bellatrix had flirted with him ad nauseam, her pathetic attempts were cringe-worthy. Her love-struck objective was obvious- she clearly wanted him to marry her.
The Dark Lord was above marrying and certainly not so foolish as to believe in love. For him, sex was a mechanical and technical thing; a means to an end. He had fucked a few of his followers in the past, primarily the virgin recruits he knew he would soon sacrifice for his cause, but he would never bed Bellatrix Black.
For one thing he had no intention of estranging such a powerful Dark family. For another, the promise of sex manipulated the girl more effectively than the Imperious would; her eagerness to impress him drove her to develop creative solutions to his problems. It was also clear to him that the always excitable and impetuous girl was becoming more and more unstable. She would be valuable to him for the foreseeable future as long as he was able to control her- and punish her for this latest indiscretion.
He had read it in her eyes; she had been one of his best students in the art of Legilimency and Occlumency but she was no match for him. Severus and Regulus were virgins and she had sent them to France to deflower one another. She had done it out of fear that he would be attracted to their purity. She was right of course; he would certainly have enjoyed taking their innocence and harnessed their power- especially Severus’. Yet she had not done it to steal his power but in an attempt to minimize her competition. Poor foolish Bella, she thought she was so clever.
Gouging the corpses nails in the face of the unconscious man on the floor, the Dark Lord surveyed his handiwork. Clutching the man’s arm, he Apparated to an alley outside the bed and breakfast. Replacing the thief’s now bloody knife in the old denim jacket, he reversed the stunning spell and kicked the man awake before Disapparating.
“Find Bellatrix, I want a word with her, in my chambers, now.”
Striding to his chambers, Voldemort did not bother to note which of his minions had scurried away on the errand.
“My Lord, you wished to speak to me?” Bellatrix bowed low, her hair sweeping the floor in front of her, before rushing to kneel at his feet.
“Bellatrix,” he resisted the temptation to kick her… he liked her after all. “Tell me Bellatrix, why have you not yet married? Lucius and Narcissa are engaged now but by tradition the eldest must marry first, yes? Certainly you agree with the old customs?”
“Yes, my Lord, of course I do, but I have not yet been propositioned,” she purred, batting her eyes seductively.
Resisting the urge to roll his eyes, he continued, “Surely not, Bellatrix. Young, beautiful, clever, wealthy and powerful pureblood witch like you?”
Bellatrix fairly glowed, her eyes shining with worshipful adoration, “My Lord says such kind things to me.”
Voldemort smirked, this was such fun and Bellatrix certainly did wonders for his ego. “We must lead by example then. It will not do for one such as you to remain unmarried. I must find you a husband, if you wish,” he observed her through his lowered eyelashes. She was almost drooling with excitement.
“Oh yes, sir, I wish, I wish!”
And now, the bomb. “My fellow Slytherin from my Hogwarts years, Lestrange, was bemoaning to me just recently that he cannot find suitable pure-blood witches for his sons,” Bellatrix paled, her eyes widening. “The Lestranges are a good family. Wealthy, old and pure lineage, you agree?”
“My Lord,” she swallowed audibly.
“They are also old friends of mine. Lestrange was one of my first Death Eaters, you know. He has been loyal to me since we were eleven years old,” he paused, satisfied by the defeat evident in her posture. Inhaling deeply through his nose as though inhaling the scent of her heartbreak pleased him, which perhaps it did, he continued, “I am quite fond of you, Bellatrix, and respectful of the Black family. It would please me to see the union of these two families and your elevation to my inner circle...”
Bellatrix struggled to remain calm. This was not what she wanted but she dared not contradict the Dark Lord; she craved his approval. “I am pleased, my Lord, that you would consider me for this great honour. Yet I am so junior in your ranks, perhaps Mr. Lestrange will not consider one so inexperienced as me worthy.”
Voldemort smiled. Trust a Slytherin to be so ruthlessly ambitious. “Fear not, Bellatrix, Lestrange will respect my wishes. I can tell that you are a powerful witch, have I not said so just tonight? I suggest this union because I want you by my side. Once your engagement is announced, you will join me three nights a week for personal training in the Dark Arts.” ‘And,’ he thought, ‘if I let you join me in my bed from time to time, it wouldn’t matter anymore. A pureblood witch such as yourself would never entertain such Muggle concepts as divorce and the Lestrange boys are such simpering idiots, your husband would be honoured to share his wife.’
“You honour me, my Lord,” Bellatrix kissed his offered hand. Three nights a week of private lessons! Not even Lucius or Severus had ever had such an honour. “Which son, my Lord?”