Disclaimer: not mine. I claim no money from things that are not mine.
Authors note: It will be NC-17 in the future, just not until Katie is older. Feedback welcomed, including criticism. I'm not sure that the characterizations work here. I have used some things that I think are standard fanon elements in the Marcus/Katie relationship but not from any particular fic. If you think any of these things are specifically your creation, let me know and I'll give you credit or remove them.
Katie Bell spoke without even glancing at the burly Slytherin quidditch captain. She continued to organize potions ingredients in one of the cabinets in the Potions classroom. Marcus Flint was not going to get to her today. She would get this detention over with as soon as possible. He came to stand directly behind her, actually casting a shadow over her. Well, he could stand there all day as far as she was concerned. She was going to get out of here without losing any more points for Gryffindor.
"Where's Snape, Gryff? Hey, hello? Gryffindor?" Marcus grabbed her shoulder, forcing her to spin around to face him. "Are you deaf?" He sneered.
"I'm sorry, I thought you were talking to Godric." She grinned at his puzzled expression. "Gryffindor." She said in a deep voice, imitating his low growl. "Seriously, Flint, I do have a name."
"Yeah, well, I have no idea what it is. I can't keep track of all the skinny little girls running around this place. Just like a Gryffindor, though, to assume everyone is obsessed with them." He sneered.
Katie laughed. "Flint, it's hard to believe you don't know my name when you said it about 50 times last game. 'I'm going to knock you off your broom, Bell.' 'Quidditch isn't for little girls, Katie."
"Well, it's hard to forget with Jordan fawning all over you all freaking game. 'Miss Bell, our lovely chaser...another outstanding play from Katie...the delectable Katie Bell. Merlin, Bell, did you blow him before the game?"
Katie smirked. Did Marcus realize he just admitted to knowing who she was? She arched her eyebrow at him, and was delighted as he flushed. Hah, Flint! You're not nearly smart enough to be able to take on me.
"No. Unlike you, I don't reside in the gutter. Anyways, Flint, I'm pretty sure that Lee didn't call me delectable."
"Yeah, well..." Marcus smirked, looking her up and down slowly, "Who would?"
Arrgh! Katie had better things to do than stand around trading quips with this Neanderthal. She turned back to the cabinet and spoke in what she hoped was a calm, collected voice. "Snape's in his office, no doubt trying to figure out a way to take points from Gryffindor for your lateness. He said that we needed to organize the potions ingredients by magical class, then by subspell, then alphabetically. I'll classify, organize and log them here, and you can start carrying the ones I've already done over to the new cabinets and put them away."
"So, I do all the heavy lifting and you flit around with a piece of paper?" Marcus snarled. "Is that because you're a weak little girl, or do you just want to watch me bend over a lot?"
"Honestly, Flint, I just wasn't sure you knew how to read." Katie replied coolly and turned again to her task.
Katie couldn't believe it. An hour later and they were barely halfway through. Flint hadn't spoken since her last sarcastic comment and Katie was almost wishing he'd start in on her again. At least then she wouldn't be so bored. She sat down on a desk and rotated her head back and forth, trying to relieve the tension in her neck.
"Y'know, the longer you sit on your ass, the longer we're both stuck here." Marcus said irritably.
"Oh, thanks for the etiquette lesson, Mr. I-was-45-minutes-late-for-detention. I'm sorry my 90 second break is going to be a crimp in your social life." Katie shot back, but stood up and resumed working. A minute or so later, a half empty bottle of butterbeer was thrust at her. She looked quizzically at Flint.
"Just drink, alright? It's late, we're tired, detention sucks. Drink up, for tomorrow we may be stuck scrubbing toilets for Filch." He thrust the bottle at her again.
Katie was about to say something clever, well relatively clever, about Slytherin cooties, but stopped at the last moment. He was actually being nice and she was thirsty. She grabbed the bottle and took a long swallow before passing it back to him.
"Thanks." She muttered, looking at the floor. She glanced up and he was staring at her with a somewhat puzzled expression on his face. Circe, he was tall. He offered her the bottle again, wordlessly. She took another sip and passed it back.
It was weird. They stood silently but every time Katie risked a glance up, Marcus was looking directly at her. She could feel herself flush and looked down at his hand wrapped around the bottle. Merlin, his fingers were long. He offered her the bottle and she took it, still avoiding his gaze.
He was slouched against a cabinet, propping himself up with his forearm. Katie found herself looking at his fingers, splayed against the shelf. She wondered how they'd look wrapped around a broom. Would they give him more control? Or was it his muscular forearms that enabled him to make such amazing stops and swerves on the pitch?
"See something you like?" At Marcus' words, Katie's eyes shot up to fix on his face. He looked supremely relaxed and self-confident, smirking slightly as his eyes lazily trailed over her. Smug bastard. Katie flushed. Why did she always have to make an idiot out of herself? She searched desperately for a way to cover her embarrassment.
"Actually, just looking for the Dark Mark." She replied with bravado. She was beyond shocked when the same fingers that she had been admiring...well, no just inspecting, really, reached out and grabbed her arm harshly.
"Do you think that's funny?" Marcus asked, leaning over her, dwarfing her small frame. His voice was cold and his eyes steely. She tried to pull away from his grip but he held fast. "Suggesting that I am allied with someone who killed babies, tortured even his allies, and went about trying to enslave the wizarding world? Someone who used Avada Kedavra like the rest of use Alohomora?"
"I..." Katie desperately tried to pull away.
"Just because someone thinks that having 95% of our laws and regulations focused on avoiding detection by muggles, and then blindly welcoming thousands of mudbloods and their families into the wizarding world each year with no questions asked is a little bit contradictory? That makes me a baby-eater, huh? I've got news for you, Bell. Not everyone who doesn't subscribe to the Gryffindor trinity of bravery, sanctimony and gullibility is a monster. And not everyone with a Gryffindor tie is the savior of the bloody world." He released her arm angrily, thrusting her away from him.
Katie took a deep breath. He was an arrogant, infuriating pureblood snob but he was right about one thing. The suggestion that he was in league with he-who-pesters-Harry was unfair in the extreme. She could only imagine how she'd have felt if someone had accused her of that. She needed to apologize. Sometimes Katie hated being a Gryffindor.
"SHUT UP, BELL! I'm sick of you and your damn house. Thinking you're better than everyone just because you're too slow to see the way the world really works. Hiding behind that whole noble bravery thing when it's really your stubbornness and inability to see more than a couple of moves ahead that keep you from getting ahead in this world. Then turning around and acting like you're better for being poor, for getting killed, for whatever insanely stupid and self-sacrificing thing you all are always coming up with. Do you know what really gets to me? How the other houses are falling all over you, willing to be your hangers on, instead of recognizing what a bunch of priggish, superior dolts you really are."
Katie took a deep breath.
"Why do the other houses support us, Flint? It is because they know that whenever someone is cheating, picking on someone else, or just making life a little bit harder for someone else, nine times out of ten it is a Slytherin. They know that when you Slytherins are acting like the rest of us owe you rent for taking up space, we'll stand up to you. They also know that valor and honor are far more important than good looks and cunning. I think even you know it, Flint. That's why you hate us so much."
"Go to hell, Katie."
"Hey, Flint, since you're passing out lessons, I have one for you. What do all these former Slytherins have in common? Bellatrix Black, Niles Avery, Rodolphus Lestrange, Barty Crouch..."
"Sirius Black." Marcus shot back.
"Congratulations, Flint. That's one. I'm sure that you could come up with one Ravenclaw or maybe even a Hufflepuff who was a death eater as well. Shall I continue? Nestor Crabbe, Anton Dolohov, Oliver MacNair, Lucius Malfoy...I could go on." Katie looked at Marcus. He stared back, his eyes dark and hands clenched. Katie took a deep breath. "I do have to apologize for what I said about the dark mark. It was an unfair thing to say and you have every right to be angry."
"Oh, I have your permission? Thanks, Bell." The sneer was back on Marcus' face but his eyes no longer held the gleeful wickedness he'd had earlier.
"I am sorry, Flint." Katie waited. She didn't know why what he said was important to her, but she could barely breathe while waiting for his reply.
"I'm sorry, too, Bell. Sorry that when there are two gorgeous, sexy and delicious...no, delectable...chasers on the Gryffindor team, I'm stuck here with the scrawny, boring, unattractive wallflower." Marcus turned back to the cabinets and resumed working.
"Two words, Flint. Dental charms." Katie fought back tears as she faced the wall.
"So, Bell, do Gryffindors actually shag or just sit around and congratulate each other on their superiority?" Katie gritted her teeth. The uncomfortable silence that had reigned in the room until now didn't seem so bad.
"Actually, Flint, when a Gryffindor boy loves a Gryffindor girl very much they sit in a circle and hold hands. Magically, a baby is created from the aura of righteousness and bravery that swirls around them. Then the Gryffindor girl thinks of Slytherins and the resulting nausea causes the girl to vomit the baby out. The baby within a few weeks becomes the overlord of the local playground, creating a fair and harmonious community for all. Why, how do you do it in Slytherin house?"
"Incredibly well, Bell. Your Gryffindor way does make a lot of sense though. If I was a girl and thought of well, me, and then had to shag a Weasley, I'd vomit too." Katie rolled her eyes. Marcus eyes glittered as he continued. "I am just so very curious, Bell, about a house where the highest thing a girl can aspire to is being shackled to a Weasley. Now, I understand that Angelina and Alicia get the Weasley twins on account of being, well, so much hotter than you, but are you first in line for the little brother on account of being on the Quidditch team? Or does he get to pick? Is there some sort of competition for his affections? Now, I will admit that I can see how shagging someone half your age sounds appetizing when your other option is Wood."
"He's only a year." Oh, great comeback, Katie. What a world-class wit you are.
"What?" Flint looked confused.
"Ron. He's only a year younger than me." Merlin, Katie, shut up! You must have 30 insults ready to hurl at a Slytherin and you're babbling on about Ron Weasley. Much to Katie's surprise however, Flint looked uneasy all of a sudden. His eyes shifted away from hers, back quickly and then away again. That managed to shut him up? It was official. Flint was fodder for the St. Mungo's psychiatric ward.
"Let's get back to work. I don't fancy being here all night." Flint stated than abruptly turned and resumed working. Katie shrugged. She didn't especially want to hang around either.
A few minutes later, Snape swooped in and raised an eyebrow when he saw they were still not done.
"Is there a problem? Miss Bell, are you really this incompetent?" Snape queried. "Filch told me he heard shouting from this room earlier. Since I have never known Mr. Flint to instigate unpleasantness, I think I'll need to take ten points from Gryffindor for your actions. Next time maybe you'll work instead of picking fights with other students."
Katie's mouth opened in indignation. Before she could defend herself, Marcus interrupted.
"Excuse me, Professor. I was late due to a meeting with other senior members of Slytherin house concerning student leadership. It was unavoidable but that has delayed us. It was not Miss Bell's fault."
Something that would have looked like confusion in anyone else flickered in Snape's eyes. He paused. "Very well, then. No points will be taken but I will remind you Miss Bell that detentions are to be taken seriously here at Hogwarts. Of course, if you had managed to be in your dormitory at 3:00am instead of in the astronomy tower, you would have avoided this situation altogether." He looked at them both for a long moment and then swept out of the room.
Katie looked at Marcus in shock.
"Thank you." Marcus said.
"Thank you. Those are the two words you're trying to remember. Because I just saved your ass?"
"Thank you." Katie said weakly. "Student leadership?"
"Someone needs to handle the procurement and distribution of firewhiskey for the student population, Bell. Heavy is the head that wears the crown."
She couldn't help it. She snickered, covered her mouth, then gave in and laughed again.
Marcus resumed working but glanced over his shoulder at Katie. "So...who was the guy?"
Huh? "What guy?"
"The guy who was worth sneaking out at 3:00am to snog in the astronomy tower. The guy worth breaking curfew for. The guy worth getting detention for...and by the way, why didn't he get detention, too?" Marcus shook his head as if he thought her rather slow. "Was it Jordan? If it was, he's already got a couple of Hufflepuff's on the go. Please don't tell me you're changing little Ron Weasley's diaper for him." Marcus shuddered.
"You're deluded. And perverted."
Marcus froze. "It's Wood, isn't it? Katie, really. The Scottish slut? Quafflehead? Our Father Who Art in Egomania? He's your captain. Really, good move, Bell. Way to get yourself kicked off the team when he tires of you."
"It's not Oliver. I wasn't with a guy!"
"Spinnet?" Katie rolled her eyes. "So I'm supposed to believe you snuck up to the astronomy tower by yourself to gaze at the stars. Not even Gryffindors are that thick."
"Just because I'm not pretty doesn't mean I'll shag any guy who asks, Flint. I was with my beloved..." Katie paused. "Broom."
"I was practicing the Poynter Swerve. The astronomy tower is the perfect place with the tight turns and all those windows to duck in and out of." Katie mistook Marcus' stunned expression for confusion. "The Poynter Swerve is a series of very tight rhythmic turns both up and down and side to side. It is supposed to disorient pursuing players, making it virtually impossible for them to take the quaffle from you."
It was Marcus' turn to roll his eyes. "I know what it is Katie. I've been able to do it since I was eight. I just can't believe you risked expulsion to practice quidditch moves. Why not do it in the daylight? How did you get caught anyways?"
"During daytime it's filled with students snogging. I got sick of trying to execute moves while half-naked people screamed in surprise. Oliver always gets on my case when he sees me doing stuff like that anyways." Katie switched into a surprisingly good Scottish accent. "Bell, quidditch is about teamwork and discipline, not fancy little flying tricks." Marcus laughed.
"So how did you get caught?"
"Half-naked people. Honestly, I would be happy to point them to any number of broom closets or unused classrooms at Hogwarts. Can I practice the Poynter Swerve in a closet? No, I cannot. Selfish gits. Anyways, I was happily swooping in and out of the windows, and this idiot sits up instead of saying something to me. So I run into him, tumble down onto his girlfriend, who screams, and alerts Filch to our presence. He comes running up the stairs with his psychotic cat."
"Why didn't you fly away? Too honorable?"
"Please." Katie rolled her eyes. "I figured no one had gotten a good look at me, so I was out the window, down along side the building, up to Gryffindor tower and into my bed in 30 seconds flat."
"Someone saw you?"
"No. The Poynter Swerve has all sorts of tricky parts to it though, and I thought I might need a reference..."
"Yes, left my copy of 'Quidditch through the Ages' in the astronomy tower. With 'Property of Katie Bell' written on the inside cover." Katie shook her head ruefully. Marcus threw back his head and laughed. "Can you really do the Poynter Swerve? The book said that if you do the moves quickly enough, you can actually disorient the pursuing player to the point where they pass out and fall off their broom. Have you made anyone do that?" Katie asked eagerly.
"Sometimes they pass out and fall. Sometimes they vomit." Marcus smiled at her. "The most important thing to remember is never to do it if there is a player above you." It was Katie's turn to laugh.
She stopped laughing as Marcus stepped closer and tucked her hair behind her ear. He was really tall. And big. And intimidating. He was all hard angles and steel. His eyes were black as they stared down at her and she could feel those long fingers on the side of her face...
"Little Katie Bell...rebel chaser and juvenile delinquent." He slowly moved his fingers down to her neck, and Katie had to swallow a sigh. He was touching her skin so lightly and she could feel her blood skim just below his fingers. Every cell felt electrified. "I do believe that I may have misjudged you." Marcus continued softly.
He started to lean closer to her, fingers slipping around to the back of her neck. Katie couldn't believe it. She had never been kissed. No one had ever really acted like they wanted to. She did want this. Even his teeth were enticing her, a clear signal that this was not the stalwart Gryffindor boy your mother would like. He was scary and immoral and all wrong for her and Katie thought that if he would just kiss her, she could go the rest of her life babysitting other people's children, and owning cats, and healing the sick and be the dependable, helpful friend to all and never despair. If she could just have this. He was coming closer and Katie shut her eyes and reached up with her lips, issuing a silent prayer that she wouldn't be a disappointment to him.
Katie waited and nothing happened. The touch on her neck had been so light that she could not tell just when it disappeared. She opened her eyes.
Marcus Flint leaned against the wall a few feet from her and grinned. Every bit of arrogant self-satisfaction that she had suspected was in him shone out from his eyes. His arms were crossed across his chest, and his voice was casual.
"Bell, thought you fell asleep there. Was there something you wanted?" His voice was low and sensual, mocking her. Katie's stomach clenched. He had played her effortlessly it seemed. She was out of her league and he knew she knew it. All right, you were dumb and you've paid, her inner voice said, just don't let it happen again. Katie vowed silently that it never would. With anyone.
Marcus held the door open for her, in a mockery of common courtesy.
"Katie." He nodded to her as she slipped past him.
"Slytherin." Katie replied, voice unquavering. She returned to Gryffindor tower.