Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling owns Harry Potter and the crew...
A/N: My bad for the slow updates guys. I've been terribly busy... here you go though! ENJOY!
A platinum blond girl was taking deep breaths as she wiped the beads of sweat off her forehead. She slowly lowered her body against her broom's handle, hugging it as she got ready to fly, high above France's National Quidditch team's practice grounds.
"I have to be faster this time." She whispered to herself before looking at her coach and giving him the slightest of nods.
Fleur Delacour shot out of the starting point of the obstacle course designed by her coach, Paul Henri, as part of her training for the upcoming semi-finals match. The course was marked by several hoops through which she had to go through, one by one, in a consecutive pattern while being blocked by floating, human-sized, wooden obstacles and being hunted down by a dozen cursed bludgers. The objective was to go through the course as fast as she could to catch a small golden ball that was shot into the sky and is now falling to the ground at the other side of the pitch.
After passing through the first hoop, she quickly had to barrel roll to dodge a bludger that almost took out her head. Closing her eyes as one of the wooden obstacles exploded into splinters when the ball that missed her smashed into it, she quickly rolled right to dodge the shower of wooden debris.
Coming in wide to take a sharp corner through the second hoop, she noticed three more bludgers joining the hunt. She made her turn even tighter and heard a loud 'CLANG' as one of the balls chasing her smashed into the side of the hoop and got stuck.
"Eleven more." She whispered as she weaved passed some obstacles, before ducking and rolling as four more bludgers narrowly missed her.
Nimbly, she quickly made her way towards the third hoop followed by the metal orbs of death that were showering the pitch with splinters in their wake.
However, as soon as she made it passed the third hoop, the four remaining bludgers came down on her. Having no room to roll, she pushed off her broom and twisted her body in the air, narrowly missing being smashed by the balls by the skin of her teeth.
She glanced behind her and saw the four balls collide into each other, the force fusing the balls together, and the combined weight overloading the charms on the balls. Fleur grabbed the falling broom in the air beside her and shoved it between her legs, mounting it quickly before shooting off towards the fourth and last hoop as the four balls that were stuck together fell to the ground like a cluster of grapes.
Hearing the sound of destruction behind her that the remaining bludgers were making, get closer and closer, she pushed her broom even faster. However, the destructive iron balls were gaining on her. When she could literally feel them right behind her, she suddenly pushed her broom down. Hugging the smooth wooden handle against her body, she started to get tunnel vision, as she raced towards the ground.
"I need to time this right." She whispered, squinting as the air rushed in her eyes.
"What is she doing?" Paul asked himself, his stop watch dangling from his wrist, as he watched his star seeker plummet to the ground.
"She's cutting it close with the distance she needs to pull out of that dive." One of the assistant coaches said.
"Actually she just passed it." Another coach muttered from behind. "Get the medical team ready!"
Paul just sighed and shook his head. 'C'mon Fleur.' He thought. 'What are you trying to do?'
Fleur took a quick glance behind her and turned back towards the ground. '1… 2… 3. Now!' She yelled in her head, as she pulled the broom up to stop her rapid descent.
Everyone held their breaths as they watched the French veela try and stop herself from running into the ground.
"C'mon Fleur!" A voice from the stands yelled.
Everyone turned towards the young man with messy, jet-black hair, wearing a white short-sleeved shirt, a black skinny tie and black slacks, standing up in the stands.
"Yeah! That's it!" He yelled again, making everyone's heads snap back towards the pitch.
Some twigs started to fall off the broom as the stress of trying to stop, started to make the broom vibrate. The grassy ground of the pitch was quickly getting closer and her descent was still a little fast.
"Merde, my broom's going break with this strain." The part veela whispered.
She took a quick glance back towards the balls, which promised concussions and pain, racing towards her and threw her broom away. As soon as the broom lost contact with its rider, the charms on it cancelled and the air resistance slowed its fall.
However, the French seeker's body mass didn't allow for air resistance to help her – not that she's fat by any stretch of the word; she's just too close to the ground for any air resistance to affect her fall and had to quickly brace her legs for the landing. She winced as she landed on the grass hard and rolled forward, using her momentum to not only to lessen the strain on her legs, but to also dodge the incoming iron projectiles.
She quickly got to her feet and started sprinting, as a series of loud thuds followed her – the heavy iron balls were all smashing into the ground, making craters on the pitch. However, the last ball had enough time to alter its course in the air and was now heading towards the running veela's head.
She more so felt the incoming bludger rather than saw it, before she looked up to her falling broom and thought, 'Can I make it?'.
She heard the rushing air just behind her head before she lunged for her broom. As soon as her hand grabbed the shaft, the charms in the broom activated and it shot forward, pulling the platinum blond with it.
She looked at the crater, the bludger she barely dodged, created and shook her head. 'I swear they're trying to kill me.' She thought before swinging herself around and mounting her broom. She deftly made it to the last hoop and raced towards the falling, tiny, golden ball, catching it barely an inch above the ground.
"Yes!" The messy haired young man yelled.
Paul released the breath he was holding as he clicked his timer to a stop. He looked at the time and chuckled.
"Crazy girl…" He whispered as he headed towards his now panting seeker lying on the grass.
"How was my time this time?" Fleur asked.
"Pretty good." Paul Henri responded as he landed beside her.
"Damn it!" Fleur scrunched up her nose cutely and swore before brushing her golden locks that were sticking on her sweaty forehead back. "Let's go again." She said, struggling to get up.
"No. That's enough for today." The coach said helping her straighten up. "You've been at it for six hours."
"But I want to hear you say that my time is excellent." She whined. "Pretty good means it's not good enough."
"Be that as it may, getting you injured before the semi-finals is counterproductive." He said before his look became stern. "And with the way that you are going, you WILL get injured." The middle-aged man chided the beautiful young veela that he came to think of as the daughter he never had.
"Fine." She huffed.
"We still have two more weeks of training camp before the Irish match. Three more days of this and you'll be begging for me to stop." The coach said, picking up her broomstick.
"Me? Beg you to stop?" She said as a devilish smirk came to her face. "I'm part veela you know. So if anything I'll be begging you to give it to me more." She breathed out huskily, relaxing her tight control on her pull and letting it manifest.
The man froze beside her as he started to turn red, making the eldest Delacour daughter laugh. He quickly shook himself from the stupor.
"Fleur! Don't do that! You're going to give me a heart attack!" The man yelled angrily at the laughing girl. "Get out of here! You still have a press conference to do!" He commanded.
"I'm going! I'm going!" She replied, laughter still evident in her voice, to the still blushing man.
Paul shook his head as she watched the retreating form of his star seeker. 'She's going to be the death of me…' He thought with a fatherly smile.
"Equipment manager! Get her broom retwigged, polished and in tip-top form in a day!" He barked out.
"You flew well today." The young man from the stands greeted Fleur at the entrance of the field.
"It wasn't good enough." She deadpanned and walk passed him.
Harry stood there watching her walk briskly towards change rooms . "How can someone so beautiful be such a bit-"
Fleur smirked as she caught the end of her 'bodyguard's' comment before the doors in the change room closed.
'Good.' She thought as she peeled off her drenched practice uniform off her unblemished body, grabbed her wand and quickly stepped into one of the showers.
"Mmmmnnnnnn." She moaned as the scalding hot water did wonders for her sore muscles.
She stood there; just letting the hot water beat her back as she felt her tense muscles start to relax. She then placed her wand on a stand and proceeded to actually wash herself. Massaging her scalp with shampoo, she thought about the press conference she had to go to.
"I hate the press." She breathed out.
Taking a longer shower than she normally does, she leaned against the shower wall and tried to go through relaxation exercises when she felt the oncoming headache this press conference is going to bring.
"This has been one of the longest weeks of my life." She sighed, before straightening up and rinsing the soap and shampoo off of her body. She then proceeded to quickly drying herself and getting dressed.
"Oui?" Fleur asked, pointing at one of the reporters who packed themselves in the team's press room that was filled to the brim.
"We've received reports that according to Mr. Weasley, more famously known as the-boy-who-lived, He was attacked in French soil by one of your associates. Is this true?" The reporter asked.
"My 'Associate' was only protecting me." She responded.
"So, Mr. Weasley WAS indeed attacked then?" The reporter more stated than asked as she furiously scribbled on her pad.
"No – wait. It's not like that." Fleur tried to interject, but the room was already abuzz with murmurs, whispers and the scratching of pen on paper after the revelation.
"According to our sources in Britain, Mr. Weasley said 'the bastard attacked me out jealousy. He was jealous of me and my relationship with Ms. Delacour.' Is this true?" Another reporter asked.
"Harry wasn't jealous –"
"So you're NOT denying that you DO have a relationship with the-boy-who-lived?"
"No I don't –"
"No – wait!"
"After Pierre, you've set your eyes on another big catch, eh Miss Delacour?"
"Mr. Weasley and I don't –"
"Aren't you worried about being distracted by this budding romance with dear Mr. Weasley from focusing on the upcoming semi-finals and, if the scouting reports are right, the finals?"
"I'm not –"
"Who's this associate of yours named Harry?"
Fleur was close to tears and her face red, as the frustration inside her was steadily growing. Her features started to get more and more avian and her hands behind the table started glowing, as the oblivious reporters kept yelling questions at her.
Paul Henri who was standing on the side of the room saw the impending explosion of the part veela's anger and quickly made it to the platform.
"Enough!" He yelled silencing everyone. "This press conference is over! Au revoir." He barked out and quickly dragged his shaking, angry star seeker outside of the room amidst pandemonium and countless flashes of wizarding cameras.
Harry smiled as soon as the doors opened, oblivious to the volatile situation he's in.
"How –" He couldn't finish his question, having to hastily erect a glowing shield in front of him as a fireball splashed against it. "What the hell?" He asked, only to receive a growl in response from Fleur before she stomped off towards the exit.
He looked questioningly at his employer and saw him shake his head. "Forgive her."
"It didn't go well then Mr. Henri?" The young man asked.
"No, no it didn't." He replied. "It started to go downhill after they asked her about your 'attack' on the-boy-who-lived."
"But I did it to protect her!" Harry retorted indignantly.
The aging man sighed. "I know Harry… I know."
"Master Harry Potter sir, mister Paddyfoot is asking you to come down for breakfast."
The sleeping wizard groggily checked his watch before cursing. "Dobby, its 6 o'clock. Let me sleep in some more."
The little elf wrung his hands as it shook its head "Mister Paddyfoot is insistent you join him for breakfast." Dobby said guiltily.
Harry covered his face with the covers, attempting to go back to sleep, but couldn't as Dobby's presence in his room didn't disappear. He sighed loudly before getting up.
"Fine. Tell the old dog I'll be down soon." He snapped, grumbling and cursing as he walked in the washroom.
Dobby served breakfast as soon as Harry sat down around the kitchen table, but the young wizard, who still had bed hair, seemed contented with just simply sitting there and glaring at his godfather.
Sirius, seemingly oblivious to his godson's annoyance, continued to happily eat his english breakfast while reading the Daily Prophet. He blissfully took a sip of his coffee before complimenting the little house elf.
"Dobby, no one makes coffee like you." The scruffy man said. "It's just perfect."
"Uh thank you mister Paddyfoot." Dobby replied, still not accustomed to receiving compliments.
Sirius just nodded to the elf who was busying himself once again with menial chores before turning to his godson. He quickly feigned surprise when he saw the glare Harry was giving him.
"What?" He asked.
"Don't what me." The messy haired wizard snapped. "What possessed you to ask Dobby to wake me up at this ungodly hour? You knew how tired I was last night after Fleur tried to –"
Sirius quickly put his hand up, cutting off his godson's tirade. "I know, I know. However, the paper was just dropped off and I thought you should see this." He said, before tossing him the day's paper.
Harry read the head line and shook his head as his lips pressed into a thin line.
The Boy-Who-Lived, Attacked in France
By: Rita Skeeter
Ronald Weasley, known as the-boy-who-lived, was viciously assaulted in Paris by an unknown man, 3 days prior. He was reportedly meeting Fleur Delacour, the French Quidditch superstar, in a coffee shop in Paris, when a man attacked him.
"It was most likely out of jealousy." Weasley said in a private interview in St. Mungo's.
According to our sources in France, Delacour and Weasley has a budding romantic relation, which was confirmed in a recent press conference the French witch held at the team's practice facility. She also let the attacker's name, Harry, who is said to be one of her associates, slip out during the said press conference.
This Harry character was described by some eyewitnesses to be around 5'9 in height, had messy black hair, green eyes, wore muggle clothing and was said to be 'Not bad looking'. We speculate that he might have been one of the French seeker's more daring suitors.
"I was caught off-guard by this man when eyes were solely focused on the woman that I love. He wouldn't have been able to do anything remotely close to what happened in that coffee shop if I was ready." Weasley said on the hospital bed. "Fleur's veela aura might've affected my reflexes as well." The hero added.
We at the Daily Prophet had been trying to get in contact with the French ministry, but no definitive answers had been given to us. We're asking the French ministry this – How was one of the most important figures in modern history attacked in broad daylight under their watch?
(This story is cont'd in page 6)
Recap of the private interview in St. Mungo's –page 6
Recap of Fleur Delacour's press conference – page 7
Rough character sketch of 'Harry' – page 7
He quickly dropped the paper and was about to get up, but Sirius hit him with a quick sticking charm on his chair.
"Sirius, I need to talk to her. She must be pissed and THIS is my fault."
"Finish your breakfast first." He stated, brooking no arguments.
Harry glared at him and made for his wand, but was quickly disarmed by his godfather, whom had his eyes closed and was sipping his coffee.
"Don't be in such a rush. Dobby went through the trouble of making you breakfast, the least you can do is eat it."
"Mister Paddyfoot, its alrights with Dobby if Master Harry Potter –" The elf tried to appease the aging marauder, but was stopped by a raised hand.
Sirius gave his godson a pointed look and smiled when he saw him sigh.
"Fine." The messy haired, young man grumbled. "Thank you Dobby." He said both gratefully, before he started to eat the big English breakfast as fast as he could.
"No problems Master Harry Potter sir." Dobby replied happily.
As soon as he was done, he quickly made it to the living room, which doubled as their office and took out a silver instrument from his desk.
"Damn it!" He cursed. "She's not on the grid."
"Hmm? What do you mean?" Sirius said as he walked in their office.
"She cancels all my tracking charms on her every night. That's why I've stopped using this thing." He said, pointing at the lifeless silver instrument. As soon as Harry finished explaining, the fireplace turned green.
"Mister Paddyfoot, mister Henri is asking for permissions to come through the floo." Dobby said as he popped into their office.
"Yes Dobby, let him through." Sirius replied and turned towards the fireplace where a middle-aged man walked out wearing only a bathrobe.
"I'm assuming you've read the articles?" Paul Henri asked and received nods. "What are we going to do about this?"
"First of all, I'm going to need to talk to her." Harry said, getting up from his desk. "Do you know where I can find her?"
"She firecalled me this morning and said she's skipping practice to go see her father." The French coach answered, and was surprised when the young man nodded and was about to apparate. "Wait, Harry! You can't just go –"
"Merde! You do know that everyone's looking for him in France right?" He asked Sirius in alarm, who was watching him with amusement.
"Harry's fine. He can take care of himself." The boy's godfather said flippantly. "Now, do you want breakfast?"
It was still very early in the morning when Harry appeared in the middle of Magical Paris, so there were only a few people milling around the alley. He quickly made his way, passed the shop owners who were taking their wares out and opening their stores, towards the Ministere de Magie.
He idly noticed wanted posters with the rough character sketch of himself from the papers, posted all over the alley. The magical poster would start off as full body picture, before zooming in on his face.
'For a 'rough' character sketch, they've got me pretty accurate.' He mused as he stopped to look at a poster of himself. 'They've got my jawline wrong though.' He thought critically, before he shook himself out of his musings and remembered his task at hand.
As he was briskly walking, he saw a little kid trip and fall at the foot of the stairs leading to the enormous doors of the French Ministry of Magic. Harry quickly rushed to the little boy's side to help him up, much to the appreciation of the mother who started fussing on the child.
"Merci beacoup Monsieur." She said gratefully, only for her eyes to widen when she took in his appearance. The mother quickly picked up her son before rushing away towards the now slightly busy magical alley.
The young bodyguard just shook his head before straightening up and walking up the stairs and through the Ministry's doors. He was surprised at how busy the foyer was with all the witches and wizards rushing off to the different departments of Ministry.
"Cela n'est pas lui?" Someone who was pointing at him yelled.
"Shit!" The young wizard cursed before running through a large crowd. "I've got to change my appearance." He decided and ducked in one of the public loos.
He came out looking like a stereotypical journalist wearing a beige long coat and a hat. He made himself older and taller with a thick handlebar moustache on his face. He took out a pad and paper and headed towards the elevators that led to the offices of the Minister of Magic.
As soon as he got there, he realized that there's a small entrance you have to pass before you can access the elevators, complete with a magic nullifying field and a couple of guards.
"Those runes on the door will cancel all my glamour charms." He observed. "I'm stuck out here if I can't get passed these guards."
He waited for a large crowd to rush the entrance and tried to slip in with them, but he was stopped by one of the guards.
"Wand s'il vous plait."
Harry, the journalist, smiled at the guard disarmingly. "Actually, I was just wondering if you knew if Fleur Delacour was in the building."
"Jacob!" The other guard yelled. "We're not supposed to talk to the press."
Jacob, the guard took in the man's appearance in front of him and decided that there won't be any harm done by answering.
He leaned in to whisper, "Oui. She's in her father's office.",before straightening up and leaving the journalist writing on his pad.
"Merci." Harry said, before walking away. 'At least I know she's here.' He thought.
He leaned against the wall opposite the lobby's entrance, trying to think of a plan to slip passed the guards without doing anything too crazy. Everything he's come up with involved either very time consuming potions, or just blowing up the runic gate, which would result in further antagonizing the French ministry. His thought process was stopped when he heard someone yell.
He saw the subject of his worries run passed the guards, towards the exit of the Ministry foyer, in tears. He quickly followed her, yelling her name to try and stop her.
"Ms. Delacour!" He yelled. "I need to talk to you!"
"No comment!" She retorted, before running even faster.
They were already passed the enormous doors of the ministry when Harry knew he was going to lose her. He quickly fired off a tracking charm on her back, which resulted in her stopping and turning around.
"Fleur." He panted, his glamor gone and his transfigured clothes back to normal. "I need to talk to –"
"Arry!" She screeched, angrily wiping the hot tears that were streaming down her cheeks, before brandishing her wand at the panting young man. "So help me god, if you ever try to put on another tracking charm on me." She yelled, not caring as the people around them have stopped to watch the spectacle.
Harry quickly placed his hand up to acquiesce the distraught girl. "Fleur, I just want to talk."
She wiped the stubborn tears that fell on her cheeks before shaking her head. "Sorry." She said.
"No wait –"
"Fuck." He cursed as his supposed ward apparated away. He scowled when he saw the French aurors making their way through the crowd that was watching them. "I need a drink." He sighed before he turned on the spot and disappeared.
Fleur was sitting on a ledge, looking over the illuminated city of Paris at night, when a snowy white owl landed beside her with an indignant squawk. She read the note that was tied on its leg and frowned.
"I found you?" She whispered, confused and quickly turned around when he heard footsteps behind her.
"Have you been here the whole day?"
Realizing who it was, she sighed, turned back to watching the bright lights of the city and shook her head. "No, but I come here to think. How'd you even know I was here?" She asked her supposed bodyguard, who tightened the scarf around his neck before carefully sitting beside her on the ledge.
"Hedwig here?" He asked as he ruffled the owl's feathers. "Has never failed to find a person I want to send mail to. So, I just tied a note on to her leg and followed her on my broom." He explained and showed her a shrunken broom on his palm. "I have to say though, you chose an interesting spot to think. I mean some people go and lock themselves in their room, the park or the beach or something." He said, putting his shrunken broom in his shirt's breast pocket and looking over at their dangling feet over the ledge they were sitting on. "While you go and sit on top of the Eiffel tower."
Melodious laughter erupted from the quidditch superstar's lips before she leaned back onto her hands. "I love heights. That is probably why I love being on a broom." She said, watching as Hedwig flew off into the night sky. "It just gives me a sense of freedom."
Harry also leaned back onto his hands and turned towards the beautiful part veela beside him. "How so?"
"People are inherently afraid of heights, therefore up here, I'm left alone." She said softly.
"Why do you want to be alone?" He asked. "It's a terrible feeling you know, knowing that you're all alone."
"Ever since I was young, people always had expectations from me. Growing up, I had to deal with my father and his political supporters and enemies, boys who wanted to have sex with me, the girls who hated me, the media, and now the country…" She trailed off, before turning towards the young wizard beside her. "They are all expecting something from me." She whispered. "I'm tired of always trying to meet everybody's expectations."
Harry looked her in the eye and nodded his understanding. "I guess… I understand." He said before smiling. "I mean, I can see how trying it can be, meeting your father's expectations."
She gave him a small smile before turning back towards the city lights again. "He's actually a very loving man, but when mama left us…" She trailed off sadly. "Being the minister of magic is taking its toll on him. It's a very taxing job."
"Probably." Harry quipped. "Running a small protection business is already stressing me. I can't imagine having to run a whole country."
"You're protection business; It's stressful because of me, non?" She asked, smirking.
"No. Well yes, but me, now being a wanted criminal is stressing me out as well." He grumbled out. "I mean I was only doing my job. It was that prick's fault, which is what I wanted to talk to you about."
"Yes, I know. Sorry for running out on you today." She said. "As you've said, papa can be very trying."
"It's okay, I'm getting used to it. I mean all I did all day was look for you while trying to evade your aurors." He said sarcastically, before looking at her seriously. "You're not going to run away again are you?"
She laughed melodiously once again before shaking her head negative. "No, I'm done for the night."
"Good, because I'm exhausted." He said as he laid down on the metal platform they were on.
She also laid down on the metal platform beside him, staring at the starless sky as they slipped into a comfortable silence. He felt her shiver slightly as a strong breeze blew by and he quickly took off his scarf and passed it to her. She took it gratefully and wrapped it around her slender neck.
"What do you say we get you home?" He asked her as he stood up holding his hand out to her. She nodded her head and gently took his offered hand as he helped her to her feet. He then proceeded to wrap an arm around her and pressed their bodies together, before they disappeared with the sound of rushing air and a pop.
Fleur stepped away from the blushing young man as they appeared in front of the Delacour mansion's gates. She then touched the gate, which glowed briefly before opening without a creak. They silently walked the cobbled path which led to the ornate front doors of the house.
"Thanks for not running away when I found you." Harry said, smiling as he scratched the back of his head when they stopped before the steps of the house. "And listen... I know you're independent and that you don't need our protection, but-"
"No, I completely understand. I'm the one who's sorry for being so difficult before. Starting tomorrow, I'll let you do your job without grief." She said apologetically, although the trace of mirth in her tone was evident. "Although, being a wanted criminal might hinder that."
"I'll manage." He said.
She gave him a quick hug. "Thanks." She said. "I'll see what I can do about the charges."
Harry watched her with amusement, as she stepped away, blushing, and swiftly walked up the steps. "Goodnight! I'll see you tomorrow!" He yelled after her, before turning away and walking back towards the gates.
A small smile graced her beautiful face as she watched him walk away, before turning towards the door. She was about to grab the doorknob, when the door suddenly opened, revealing a person.
She scowled as she leveled the person with a heated glare. "Weasley."
A/N: Wait, what? What's he doing in her house? R&R!