Disclaimer: I own none of the characters, locations, or concepts mentioned herein
Written for LJ's lgbtfest, prompt 405: Lee Jordan, Fred and George Weasley. Lee's had the twins' help hiding that he was born female, but now puberty's hit and he can't hide it as easily. The twins come up with a way to keep his secret. (FtM Lee)
Warnings: A painfully vivid description of menstrual cramps, or so I'm told.
Alright, take a moment here. Get over whatever reaction you may be having to the basic premise and repeat to yourself: "It's just a story". No, I don't care that it isn't canon. I couldn't give a flying monkey if you find the whole concept offensive. Either read and be happy or go away.
Time and Again
Lee Jordan looked reflexively in the mirror one last time, and sighed in exasperation as he caught himself doing it. He knew he looked fine: he'd been doing this for years after all. He knew there weren't any tell-tale little giveaways. There never had been, really. He tousled his dreads, smirked at his reflection, and slammed shut the lid of his trunk.
By the standards of the wizarding world, Lee was a fairly normal teenage boy. He liked Quidditch, was loud and energetic, and only tidied his bedroom when threatened with physical violence otherwise. And now it was September the first and he was about to leave his home for King's Cross Station. His grandad had managed to forget once again that he had a grandchild living with him, let alone that said grandchild needed a ride to King's Cross, and had buggered off to Croydon for reasons which remained unclear to Lee. Which was inconvenient, because he'd wanted to get to the station early enough to meet Fred and George. Their younger brother was starting Hogwarts that year, and all summer their letters had been full of gleeful accounts of the torments they had planned for him.
Lee grinned idly to himself as he climbed aboard the bus, trunk abandoned in favour of a less conspicuous duffel bag, pleased with the thought of seeing his best friends again after two long months. He hated having to be so cautious all the time: it would be nice to spend some time with the only living souls who knew that the name on his birth certificate was Leigh-Anne Rachel Jordan.
He wasn't sure quite what to make of how quickly they had fathomed his secret. It couldn't be blamed solely on living in close proximity. Kenneth Towler and Nathan Starke, their other room-mates, were still blissfully ignorant...with the help of some constructive misinformation. Lee smiled. Perhaps at the time the twins wouldn't have been his first choice as confidantes, but they had proven themselves trustworthy time and again.
He checked one last time that he had everything - clothes, school things, money, his pet tarantula Eric - before making his way through the barrier.
"Sticking charms," Fred suggested.
"Did those last month, remember?" George replied.
"Are we really that short on ideas? Come on, a little creativity."
"Right now they're all we've got," Lee said; "Next Hogsmeade trip's ages away, no chance to restock."
"They really could schedule these things a but better," Fred said, flopping back to stare at the ceiling.
It had always mystified Lee that people were unable to tell the twins apart. Sure, he might occasionally mistake one red-gold blur for another on the Quidditch pitch, but at those speeds it was hard enough to distinguish between the non-related players.
"Quidditch season's starting soon," Lee said, having followed that train of thought to its natural conclusion; "Still no new seeker?"
"Nope," George shrugged.
"The tryouts were painful to watch," Fred added; "More'n twenty people came, and not a scrap of talent between them."
"Hey, you're pretty good on a broom." George nudged Lee; "Maybe you should go for the seeker spot."
Fred reached over and cuffed his brother lightly across the back of the head: "Showers, idiot."
"Wha- oh!" George blinked and smiled sheepishly at Lee; "Blimey, I keep forgetting about that."
Lee smiled back. It felt so good to be able to relax and let his guard down a bit, so much so that he sometimes didn't even realise he was doing it. "S'okay. I do too."
It was a dismal, grey sort of day. Rain fell steadily from dull leaden clouds in a smugly steady manner that seemed to say 'I can keep this up all week'. Lee was on his way to Charms, wondering if the bacon he'd had for breakfast was responsible for the sharp, insistent pain in his stomach, when abruptly and without any warning he had a twin on either side of him.
"We've got a seeker," George said, gesturing excitedly.
"Fantastic on a broom," Fred continued.
"We can't tell you who."
"Just between us, we'll tell you later."
"But not here."
"Never know who's listening."
"Okay," said Lee, who to his credit had mostly managed to follow the verbal relay. A fresh wave of pain made him wince and he rubbed the sore spots, just inside the jutting hipbones at the curve of the stomach.
"Yeah, just a bit sick. That bacon taste okay to you?"
"Well if you think you need to go to the Infirmary, just say the word."
"It's our solemn duty to take you there if need be."
"Even if we do miss class."
By the time he went to bed that night, Lee was starting to think he might have to break his self-imposed ban and go to see Madam Pomfrey. Not only had the pain spread to his lower back and hips as well, it had risen from 'uncomfortable' to 'barely tolerable' and was fast on its way to 'crippling'.
He groped for his wand in the darkness, fingers brushing over the dark wood of the bedside table. After a time without success he gave up. It wasn't as though he could remember how to cast the Analgesia Charm anyway.
It took him a long time to fall asleep.
It could have been anything from a moment to hours later that he woke again, curled in a ball with sweat pouring off him, convinced that his guts were being pulled out through his kidneys and shredded. 'Is this what the Cruciatus Curse feels like?' he wondered dazedly.
"Lee? Lee! Damn, damn, toss me my wand. Analgia."
Lee went limp as the pain ebbed away and uncurled a little, too drained to resist as he was pulled up into a sitting position. There were arms around him, the mattress sagging under more weight than it was used to.
"S'goin' on?" Nathan Starke, still half-asleep and squinting across the room in confusion, asked.
"Nothing," Fred said, "Nightmare. Go back to sleep." With a certain finality he nodded at George, who reached across and pulled the curtains shut.
"Lee? Lee, are you alright?"
"I don't know." He was shaking. He closed his eyes, trying to ignore the lingering remnants of fear and pain; to concentrate on George's solid weight against his side, the reassuring warmth of Fred's arm around his shoulders.
Unfortunately his hard-won composure was superseded by panic when he pushed the blankets back and saw blood, dark and sticky, glistening wetly on his thighs. There was a sharp intake of breath to his left, a whispered 'oh hell' from his right. It wasn't until the droplets fell from his chin and landed on his t-shirt that he realised he was crying.
Three weeks later, Lee was doing his Potions homework in the library when he saw the twins emerge from an obscure little cluster of shelves, look around furtively, and sneak off with various books and scrolls tucked under their arms. It wasn't long before his curiosity got the better of him - he couldn't resist the temptation to have a look.
It was a small section, quiet and removed from the main part of the library. Lee took a look at the titles on the first shelf that caught his eye.
'Self-Transfiguration: A New You!' ... 'Human Transformations Vol. VII (Age and Gender)' ... 'The Theory and Applications of Metamorphmagic' ... 'Shape vs. Soul, a Study'...
Time and again.
If you're thinking about flaming (And believe me, someone is)...don't. You chose to read this far. No-one forced you. Concrit is welcome but otherwise, if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all.