All rights and privileges to Harry Potter are copyrighted trademarks and property of J. K. Rowling, Warner Brothers, and all peoples associated. And all rights and other stuff to The Lioness Quartet and Wild Magic are copyrighted trademarks and property of Tamora Pierce and Random House. The characters of these fictions are used WITHOUT permission for the entertainment purposes only. This work of fiction is not meant for sale or profit. As if anyone would actually pay money for this thoughtless drivel. And even if they like it, it's right here and money is not required. So there! Bottom line: I don't own them I just like to play God with them. Like an ant walking back and forth across my feet for what seems like miles upon miles. Or a bug with a magnifying glass as it slowly burns into nothingness. *Ahem* Yes, I don't own them. Never have. Never will. *Sigh* And the title was borrowed from a Savage Garden song, The Animal Song, so that belongs to them and the same disc applies.
Contents: Angst, Slash, POV
Spoilers: Yup. Books 2 and up.
Summary: Percy is a Wild Mage and therefore the only person on the Side-O-Light to wield the Dominion Jewel.
Status: COMPLETE *sniffle* It only took me a year…
A/N: Now that I've finally finished, I'm going to go back and rewrite some things so that the story is consistent, so if you see an update, it probably doesn't mean there's a new chapter. Sorry.
*~* Indicates time change
~*~ Indicates scene change
Indicates the voices in Percy's head… rather his recalling past dialogue
Superstars and Cannonballs
"Percy! Flint!" Someone is shouting and banging on the door.
The arm around my chest tightens and – WHAT?! That was just a dream! There is no way – That's right, last night I fell asleep with Marcus spooned against me…
"Wake up!" The door crashes open.
"I'm awake," I mutter, not entirely lying.
I glare as Charlie and Ron burst into the room. Doesn't anyone in my family knock anymore?
"It's about bloody time, you two!" Charlie exclaims as Ron's mouth opens and closes in a particular way and his ears redden. "Now get out of bed!"
Marcus pushes me out of bed, landing me on the floor.
At least I'm clothed – oh… That means it really was a dream… I don't know if I should be disappointed or not.
"Dumbledore has a portkey in his office and it needs to be used within the hour," Charlie says impatiently.
Ron's mouth opts for open, and I think a beetle flew in.
"We'll be there Weasley, give us a moment," Marcus climbs out of my bed elegantly.
Charlie puts a finger under Ron's chin, closing his mouth effectively. "Let's give them their moment," he repeats Marcus, shoving Ron from the room.
"Marcus, what just happened?" I pick myself up from the floor.
"Your brothers just walked in on us in bed, spooned against each other," he answers simply.
"Oh, that's what I thought… Wait! What?!"
"Don't panic," he sneers. "It's not worth it. Charlie knew anyway."
That makes it all better then.
"Don't be sour," he coos.
Right, the mind thing.
Yes, the mind thing, he repeats, reaching for me.
"Don't be that way," he scoffs.
"Whoa! What way?" I snap.
I don't regret anything –
No matter how many times I travel by portkey I will never become accustomed to it. I much prefer Apparation; it doesn't always land me on my bum.
And Marcus lands gracefully on his feet.
We are indeed in a wood, hopefully a wood in Kent.
Marcus offers me a hand up. I refuse, pulling myself up.
A funny feeling hits me: like I'm melting into the earth.
After a quick string of curses from Marcus, he pulls me back into myself.
"Fuck, you feel the dementors double than anyone else." He offers me… chocolate? "Take this."
Where did he find chocolate?
"Your brother. Always prepared, he is."
"I didn't feel the despair," I state, not sure why.
"I could tell," he muses, tapping his forehead. "It's the Jewel's response. Don't worry, you'll be fine with me." He flashes me a toothy grin.
I can't hear his thoughts. The blood is still in my system… I think.
As much as I would love to refresh the blood, there is no need to panic; I just am able to block my thoughts, Marcus replies smugly. "You know where we're going?"
"If we're at Downe, yeah," I press my lips together. "It's about a block away."
I haven't been home in over a year.
Wow. Leave the house unattended and vermin invade. Actually, dementors are more parasitic…
Oh! I have to transfigure… into what, though?
"We'll figure that out when the time comes or you panic and transform into some – Dementor!"
"Me?" I'm a dementor?
"Transfiguration, you twat!"
Did I just –
"Just like your last year, it shouldn't be too difficult…" Masquerading as a dementor?
"That was you! What a serious lack of judgment, not to mention cheating and – "
"One never refuses a Malfoy," he says ominously.
"So you blame him for you dressing up in a dementor robe and parading around the pitch – "
"If I hadn't agreed to it, I would have been forced in some highly unpleasant manner, and once the embarrassing ordeal was over, I would have been tortured to death."
"Cheerful," I say wryly.
"Yes. Now transfigure," he orders.
"And what about my clothing!" I shout on impulse.
My ears burn.
"We'll hide it here." He pauses, deep in thought and not letting me listen to any of it. "Keep your wand under you dementor robe and if you are caught or in some other trouble Apparate to Cork, then London, then back to Hogemeade."
He conjures a dark dementor's robe from nothing and throws it at me.
"Go on now, transfigure."
"Fantastic!" he enthuses, "but that last one was uncalled for."
Did it work?
"Very well, actually… Except your eyes are glowing purple… I never knew what dementors looked like under their robes…" His eyes dip from mine down.
I flush, hurriedly covering myself properly with the robe.
"You're going to need to keep your eyes closed or at least squinted," he muses.
I pile my clothing with a claw, glasses on top. Marcus hides them magically.
We stare at each other for some time, not saying or thinking anything, and then we head off home. My flat, rather.
"I think I've finally come to an understanding with the twins!" he boasted cheerily.
"What brought this on?" She cocked an incredulous eyebrow.
"Well, now that I'm out of the house, I really don't come in contact with them and…" He let his sentence hang.
"That's your understanding?" Her expression was twisted in a quizzical manner.
"No, no!" He said quickly. "It's just that I finally understand them… and that I can't change them."
He hung his head with the confession. He had tried for years to change those beasts into humans and he had never succeeded. They weren't so bad anyway.
"You! There!" A Deatheater points directly at me, and I have to remind myself that I'm a dementor.
I shuffle to him.
"Why are you not with the rest of them?" He snarls and kicks at me. He should be crippled with despair right now. Why is he not passing out?
He shoves me into my flat.
There are a handful of Deatheaters and demetors just mulling about.
"This one will Kiss the prisoner," the Deatheater from outside announces.
"Don't be so hasty," another contradicts, "the Minister will come for him."
"There is a new Minister," a third counters. "Just yesterday the elder Weasley made a speech as new Minister.
"Then, like I said, the prisoner should be Kissed," the first insists.
They prod me into my bathroom, through the wards around the door.
Oliver is there, in bad shape, wheezing with every breath, but still whole… physically.
Um… How would a dementor react to someone so hopeless?
Oliver looks up at me in fear.
Marcus, I need you to explain something to Oliver: Tell him that I'm me, not a dementor. Tell him to feign everything.
Wait… What?! His mind explodes. Not literally: he's brassed off. You're not going to Kiss him!
If you can think of anything better, go ahead. If not, I do it.
All right, Percy.
Oh, and find out where his wand is.
Don't rush genius!
Focusing on my body, I return to my normal self, approaching him slowly. Thank Merlin, the robes still cover my body.
He cowers away from me. He's the wounded now.
He doesn't buy it, Marcus spits. Thinks I'm a delusion.
I'm going to go through with this anyway.
I seize Oliver by the front of his robes and pull him to his feet, making sure my hand stays beneath my dementor robe.
I bring his face to mine, pressing my mouth to his ear. "You should have listened to Marcus."
His eyes widen in surprise, which I hope the watching Deatheaters take as fear.
I pull his face underneath the robe, hiding his face and mine.
I don't know what to do after this!
Our mouths meet. There is nothing special, and I can feel him smiling.
He's going to become hysterical.
Marcus! What should I do?!
I'm panicking; I need to calm down.
Percy, convince the other dementors to create a diversion. Anything to take the attention off you. Then Apparate to where I told you, maybe even add a few more stops. Take him with you –
I was planning on leaving him.
Now is not the time for sarcastic quips, he barks, get him medical help as soon as you can, he's damaged internally, externally, and mentally. I'll meet you at Hogsmeade.
If he were talking aloud I would have sworn that he didn't take a single breath.
I need your help! I broadcast to the dementors.
The dementors hiss back, you stole our meal, Iriseyes.
Why have you not gone for the others? I try.
Hurry up! The urgency in Marcus' voice hurts. Use the Jewel!
Thems have protection.
What type? If I take care of the protection, you can feast on them.
We know not.
Marcus! What protection do the Deatheaters have, and how can it be removed?
Stop being snappish! Hmm… Amulets. Opals. Sapphire too. Amber.
Call the amulets to you.
Then hide them in – or destroy them. Yes, destroy them.
My mouth hurts and – oh, I'm still kissing Oliver. Yeah, casually. I'll keep him here until the Deatheaters are gone.
There is no longer protection, I announce. Feast upon those who have kept you hungry. Then leave this place!
Screams erupt from my bedroom, and the Deatheaters watching take off to investigate.
I release Oliver's mouth and a hysterical laugh burbles from his mouth.
We're leaving now. Don't forget my clothing!
I grab onto Oliver and Apparate, landing us in a back alley in Cork.
Half carrying him, we weave through the crowed streets, disappearing behind a church, then Apparate to Bath, repeating the same task. Next is Oxford, followed by Blackpool, then Bath again.
Unfortunately, by the time we reach Bath for the second time, Oliver is too exhausted to continue, and we have no money for board at any tavern.
I sit us down on the steps of a Muggle convent.
"Ask inside," Oliver gasps. His breath is bubbly.
"If you come with me, we'll be able to stay for sure."
He looks at me with a pitiful expression. I can't even begin to imagine the torture he endured.
"I'll take care you," I say softly.
The Muggle priest is letting us stay, especially after he saw Oliver's condition. He even sent a nun to help us, but I drove her off; magic can handle this better than Muggle techniques mostly because most of the damage is internal.
All of Oliver's internal organs are patched up with my limited knowledge of medical magics and he is no longer bleeding. His external bruises will heal on their own, but his mental damage I don't know what to do about. It's a result of the Cruciatus Curse, I'm sure. I have yet to ask him anything except for medical reasons.
He's now resting; I won't let him sleep.
Well, we made it. At least Oliver and I have.
What did happen to Marcus?
I reach out with my mind. Marcus?
Where are you, Percy?! His mental voice shouts back. He's worried. How … well, with anyone else it might be sweet, but with Marcus it's just creepy.
Does that mean the link wore off?
No, you twat, I just thought it was polite to ask instead of digging through your mind, he snarls sardonically.
Oh. Both Oliver and I are in Bath; he's too weak to make it back to Hogwarts. Tell Roger we'll return by tomorrow. And make sure you have my glasses.
I cut the transmission. I'm sure Marcus won't be too happy, by right now all that matters is Oliver.
I kept vigil the entire night and nothing happened; Oliver only stirred when I prodded him with my wand so he wouldn't sleep.
We need to leave though. Who knows how close they are to finding us.
A short view of, I assume, a dream: skin.
Wake up now!
There is no reason for you to be snappish, he finally responds, lazily too, or maybe tiredly. Tired, Percy, not lazy… and you interrupted a very nice dream – Where are you? When are you returning?
That's why I contacted you.
Don't use that dry tone with me.
We'll both be at Hogs-
"Yes, sir, two men, one in bad shape," a nun recollects helpfully.
I peer out of the window down into the courtyard. A group of fuzzy, black Deatheaters. Wouldn't my glasses come in handy right now?
Bugger, Marcus, the Deatheaters are here. Ol's not in any shape to pull the same stunt we did yesterday.
How did they manage to track us so quickly?
I can't do anything, Percy. Nothing. He stretches the last word. And he does not seem happy.
What?! Why not – No – shite. I need to do something now. No magic. Human magic.
I turn to Oliver: he's still out of it.
Turning back to the window – There are trees in the courtyard. If I could just ask the trees to kill them, maybe engulf them in wood…
But I've only dealt with animals.
No time for panicking.
Deep breath. In. Out.
Shite, they've killed the nun.
I reach out to the trees, the same way I've done with animal. Except the trees don't have minds, so I have to create one.
Without quite knowing what I'm doing, I reach out and grab and engulf the Deatheaters, trapping and crushing them. There were four, not that I could see them.
There is a scream and then nothing.
I blink blearily down at the courtyard: there aren't any Deatheaters there.
I snatch up Oliver and my wand and Apparate down to the courtyard to the dead nun and killer trees.
The nun is quite dead and the bark patterns on the tree resemble Deatheater masks.
I did it!
Marcus. Be down at Hogsmeade. Now!
Percy! I'm on the toilet! he complains.
I feel myself flush.
Then send Charlie and make sure Madam Pomfrey's with him. On the platform.
I'm on it.
I gather Oliver into my arms and Apparate to Edinburgh then Hogsmeade where I find Charlie nervously hopping from foot to foot on the platform.
"Percy!" he gasps, hurrying over to help me with Oliver. Funny how Oliver's larger than Charlie, but he can carry him with ease.
"Where's Madam Pomfrey?" I breathe.
Charlie jerks his head, indicating that she is behind him. Just as he does so, she comes racing towards us and without so much as a 'good morning' is examining Oliver. This woman is brilliant.
I look away from the scene, letting Madam Pomfrey do her job. Marcus is racing down from the castle. Well, I can't exactly tell, but someone with Marcus' build and dark features is running down from the castle.
He slows down to a walk as soon as he enters the town. Yup, it's Marcus.
"Do you have my glasses?" I prompt.
"What? No hello?" he scoffs. "I put my life on the line for you and all you care about are your glasses?"
He presents me with them.
I could kiss him –
"Thank you," I murmur.
"You're welcome," he replies quietly. The words sound foreign on his tongue.
We just stand there facing each other, one waiting for the other to say something.
I desperately want to yell at him for leaving Oliver in such danger, but I really don't want to break whatever is happening between us.
And Charlie clasps me on the shoulder.
"Let's get you settled," he says gently.
I turn from Marcus to Charlie. Madam Pomfrey and Oliver are gone.
I hum. "I need to find Roger first."
"Of course." Marcus thins his lips.
"He'll be fine." I find my lips twisting into a contrite smile.
"Thank you," Roger whispers. He looks up at me, eyes shining.
I nod and leave before his tears fall.
Marcus is waiting for me outside the door.
"Why wouldn't you help me?" I demand.
All he can do is smirk. "Who slammed the door in whose face now?"
"I don't like you," I tell him plainly.
"That's nothing new," he sneers.
"Why wouldn't you help me?" I repeat, a hard edge to my voice.
"I couldn't," he states.
Yeah, I believe that. "Marcus," I growl.
"I truly couldn't. Deatheaters may be dumb, but they're not stupid."
I eye him incredulously.
We start walking away from the infirmary to… wherever he is headed. Just away.
"At first they thought the dementors had just mutinied. But they had their charms, so that could not have happened, especially when leaving the victim to escape. They figured that it was the work of a psychic because of the nature of the charm. So they built up wards to keep the same mistake from happening again. There was nothing I could do."
I sigh. He's being smooth and sure, so it could be the truth or a lie. Merlin, I hate him.
"Do you know how they tracked us so quickly?" I ask, still curious.
"I honestly have no idea," he holds up his hands as if to prove his innocence.
I snort at his choice of words: 'honestly.'
Poor Oliver, dragged into this mess. Roger too. I even feel sorry for Ron and Charlie –
"How did the Deatheaters know about Oliver?"
"That I couldn't tell you."
I narrow my gaze at him. "How did Oliver and Roger come together in the first place? Especially when Ol was with Cedric." I already know part of the answer, but I want him to admit it.
"You want me to give something away, it won't work."
"Mr. Flint." Snape skulks up behind us. "What have I told you about Muggle sayings?"
What is with Snape and Muggle sayings?
Like I would know what he was referring to.
"Mr. Flint, once you have finished with your business, please join me in my office."
Marcus nods, and Snape leaves.
"Did you have anything to do with Oliver and Roger?" I order once Snape's footsteps fade.
Marcus looks me straight in the eyes. "Yes."
Neither one of us will look away, playing a game of alpha-beta. The problem is I'm beta, he's alpha, but I want to be alpha.
He admitted it though, that's a step.
"Hmm?" I hum.
"I'm not going to admit anything else, you realize."
I moan in frustration. "I know."
"Dumbledore wants to see you, and I need to find Severus." He turns to leave, breaking the eye contact, turns back, snogs me soundly, and leaves me shell-shocked.
"So nice to see you, Mr. Weasley," Professor Dumbledore smiles. There is no twinkle. He motions to a chair.
"Yeah, I'm alive."
"The jewel has made sure of that," he assures me. "Even if you don't know enough about wielding it, it knows how it wants to be handled."
I nod because I can't think of anything to say.
"That will become necessary in the future," he continues.
"Future?" I stare at him with wide eyes.
"There is a war being fought, Mr. Weasley," he explains dryly.
"Yes, sir." Well, I'm in this until the end no matter what.
"At least you recognize your fate," he smiles benevolently. "It took Mr. Flint three years to accept that he was different, other than being Muggle born."
And I just kinda stare at him.
"You can harass him about that little fact," he winks at me.
A faint smile threatens to form on my lips and I let it.
Oliver is awake when I return to check on both him and Roger.
"He's suffering short-term memory loss," Roger explains quietly. "But he's alive. Thank you."
"It was nothing," I respond wryly.
"Since you put it that way…" he tries to smile.
"Are you in the mood for answering questions?" I glance at Oliver, but address Roger.
"We're going to have to answer them sometime," Roger sighs. "Can't spend forever avoiding them."
Oliver just looks at us pitifully.
It's like attacking a wounded unicorn.
"How long have you been friends with Marcus?"
Roger blinks in surprise, as if he had expected me to ask him his deepest, darkest secrets… which I do plan on doing.
"Since I found out about his little talent," Roger explains, as if he has a million times. "My fifth year."
Actually, now that he says it, I do remember that.
"So you've maintained your friendship?"
"What do you mean?" he frowns. "We just kept in touch."
I glance at Oliver, and he has a sour look on his face.
"But Oliver can't stand Marcus," I remind him. As if he needs to be reminded.
"Right…" Roger responds at length.
I look back to Oliver.
He glares back.
"Flint made sure that Oliver behaved himself," Roger admits in a whisper.
"Uh-huh," I comment intelligently.
Oliver looks outraged, like he's going to strangle someone.
"And what about Cedric?" I ask delicately.
"What about him?" Oliver snaps.
Roger puts his hand on his chest to calm him. Roger looks deep into Oliver's eyes as if searching for permission.
Roger sighs and looks away, hand still on Oliver.
"Cedric had a girlfriend after I graduated," Oliver spits bitterly. "What we were… we just had a fling. It was nothing. I was upset, yes, about his girlfriend and his death."
Roger looks from me to him and… How much of that is truth and how much is Marcus?
"Then in our last year, Roger found me alone after a quidditch match: Hufflepuff vs. Gryffindor, the… the one we lost. That's when things started to happen."
Again, how much is real? How much is Marcus?
Roger's face won't give anything away.
"I didn't give up Cedric, though…" Oliver blushes in shame. From what I remember, Cedric was very serious about Oliver –
"Did Cedric know?"
"About Roger? No."
"Thank you," I murmur, feeling really horrible for bringing it up while Oliver is still unwell.
I leave, but as I step into the hallway, Roger joins me.
"It was Flint, you know," he sighs.
"I figured," I grunt, but Roger's hurt about putting Oliver and Cedric through so much.
"Good luck," he tries to smile up at me.
"You too. I'll see you at work, possibly, if I don't see you before."
I look to the shout and see nothing, turn back and Roger is gone.
"Percy! Percy! PERCY!"
Charlie's orange hair pops out of the darkness of the corridor as he races toward me.
"They've recovered!" He rushes me, tackling me in a crushing hug.
"Who? Slow down and let me breathe,' I gasp out.
"Come! Come!" Charlie says excitedly as he drags me down the hallway.
And I find myself in front of a Hebridean Black. The same one as earlier… and she remembers me, bumping me with her muzzle.
"He's taken," a gruff – Marcus says. He's behind the dragon, near Bill and the twins… and scowling deeply.
"He's lying," I whisper into an ear hole.
No. He is you be smell.
He is? What? I smell of him?… Oh.
I frown, then try to think of other things like… Bill and the twins.
"How are they?" I ask.
"Stable, but they'll improve," Charlie smiles brightly.
"How did they… well, improve?"
"Snape and Flint developed a potion that would be able to regrow their magic and their minds. It's quite interesting, what with reversing apoptosis and all, without the risk of tumors like mitosis would cause eventually."
So Flint is brilliant, then.
I shouldn't be so surprised, working with him all these years.
Everything's going to work out.
"Alanna, I don't understand how people change all the time," he shook his head.
"People don't change," she explained. "You do, and people you've known for the longest time can still surprise you."
I'm almost asleep when someone knocks on my door.
Professor Dumbledore had given me my own room so I couldn't rely on Roger or Marcus to answer it.
So I just ignore it and the knocking continues.
"Percy! Open up!" It's Marcus. Hey – When did he start calling me by me given name?
"About a year ago!" He shouts back. When did we replace the link – He kissed me in the hallway.
I roll out of bed and open the door.
We just stand there staring at each other.
Finally, I stand aside, allowing him to enter.
Thank you to every one who responded!
Kia: Here's the update… the last one too. *sniffle*
Ichigatsu: Hot, huh? Maybe I should raise the rating…
Lulu-Chan: Nope, I haven't forgotten about this fic. Sorry for the lack of snogging in this chapter. I hope that the Roger/Oliver/Cedric deal makes more sense now. I have plans to see Two Towers tonight. ^^
Mar: Still waiting for that continuation?
Akemi: Yup, there was a kiss. I'm glad that you enjoyed the fact it wasn't mushy. I don't like mushy things.
GayRon: Thank you!
Ladybug: What'd you wanna go to class for? I'm glad you enjoyed this. ^-^
Green Eyes: Yes, the slashy goodness; what else in life is worth that?
MidnightLoner: No, Percy's not going to die… at least in this fic (he's still alive and it's over). And if Rowling decides to kill him off in book five, I'll – I don't know what I'll do, but it won't be pleasant.
Bad-ass-Cinderella: I've never heard of that one before (killing off Fudge), hmm… actually that does seem like a good idea, the worthless bastard.
Demeter: There was the Percy/Oliver kiss, but I don't think that's how you imagined it…