For the Minerva Fest -
Prompt Author: Requested by Kelly Chambliss ~ written by Sel
Prompt: How do Moody and Minerva deal with the fact that during the GoF year, she did not realize that he'd been replaced by an impostor? Their past relationship can be whatever you like: at school together, friends from the early Order days, lovers, enemies, etc.
Summary: Minerva hopes that Alastor will never know exactly what Minerva McGonagall did with Barty while the real Alastor was in the trunk.
Warnings: possibly DubCon depending on your definition of informed sexual consent. No rape.
Disclaimer: "Harry Potter" belongs to J.K. Rowling and her legal licensees.
Author's Notes: T

Thank you to the Letters Kelly, Terri and Lyndsey and T for their editing, auditing and suggestions.

-o-0-o-

The first thing Minerva McGonagall did, after the realization that Professor Alastor Moody was in fact Barty Crouch, Junior, was take command of the chaos. She didn't even stop to inhale deeply or allow herself a mere human moment for wobbly knees. No, as a seasoned veteran of the Order of the Phoenix, she was cool and level-headed in an emergency, never more then when her students were in crisis. Cedric Diggory was dead, Voldemort had returned, Harry Potter was having his crisis du jour, Alastor Moody… the real Alastor Moody was in a bad way after being in his godforsaken trunk for God knows how long and Albus Dumbledore needed her to be rock-steady.

Ignoring the mental taunts of her subconscious was beyond difficult. The snide voice kept jeering, exactly how long had Alastor Moody been in his trunk? Only for a few days, perhaps… perhaps a month… for the love of everything Minerva held dear, bloody Alastor Moody could not have been locked in his trunk since before the Yule Ball… certainly he could not have been in the trunk since before the start of the school year.

Somebody would have noticed.

Somebody SHOULD have noticed.

SHE SHOULD HAVE KNOWN.

After the circus had been packed up, the Ministry and its clowns all but forcibly removed from Hogwarts, Albus and Minerva held a long, rational conversation. After much sober discussion, their consensus was that Alastor Moody had been in the goddamn trunk since bloody August. That decided, Minerva calmly walked back to her quarters. She went to her wardrobe, and deliberately took out a long, green dress that she had once worn to the Yule Ball. The matching shoes and the hat were also removed. She put them into a small pile in the middle of her bedroom and she calmly, intentionally and methodically Incendio'd them.

Carefully done, so not to incinerate anything but the clothes, she deliberately watched them burn into ash which was then Displaced into her fireplace. Wishing that she could burn her memories as easily.

That done, Minerva McGonagall went to her bathroom, where she took a long, hot shower and scrubbed herself until her abused skin was raw and bleeding. But it was far too late to remove the taint of Barty Crouch, Junior from her skin.

The clothes had been burned, but the memories still festered. The awkward, fumbling encounter after the Yule Ball that hadn't been particularly satisfying… and had left her feeling… soiled. She struggled to repress how trapped she had felt, how he had followed her around Hogwarts, obvious in his desire for a repeat. There had been something off about Alastor that had deeply disturbed her that night. Try as she might, she couldn't put her finger on what was so damn wrong that she had fled back to her quarters before the night was over. It wasn't just the clumsy, self-centered sex but something else.

Finally, she had dismissed her forebodings; she was merely being shallow, that Alastor's vast collection of assorted scars, burns and missing body parts had disturbed her delicate sensibilities. That she had been foolish to hope that his brutish appearance did not match the man beneath. No, her inner eye had seen clearly and the sensible, rational, pragmatic Minerva McGonagall, not having any use for her internal Trelawney, had ignored it.

And she had kept him locked in a goddamn trunk, just as surely as if she had the key.

If she had only spoken of her misgivings to Albus, perhaps Albus would have investigated. He knew Alastor far better than she did… He had known Alastor for far longer than she had, as Alastor had been stationed as Albus' Auror Bodyguard after the Gellert incident. Even if Albus hadn't done anything, Alastor's incarceration in the trunk would not be weighing so heavily on her soul.

"Please," she pleaded with any deity that might be listening. "Please, don't ever let Alastor know."

-o-0-o-

Sound of scraping metal, protesting, as each trunk compartment was opened and then closed.

Bastard had never lubricated the intricate workings of his trunk. So it protested and shrieked its metal remonstration each time Barty the Bastard opened his trunk. No… not his trunk. No, not Barty the Bastard who was impersonating Alastor Moody's trunk…no... no… no… Barty the Bastard wasn't pretending to be a trunk… the trunk that belonged to the real Alastor Moody who was .

Quick, Alastor, what's in the trunk compartments? Pop Quizzes helped keep his mind focused… somewhat… until he forgot what questions he had asked.

First compartment.

Spell books. Grimoires. A first edition of the illustrious Grimoirium Verum, passed down from one Moody generation to the next. He'd kill the bastard if he got one spot of his Death Eater drool on his Grimoire.

If he ever got out… which wasn't happening any time soon… God knew he had tried. And each acknowledged attempt at absconding from his spacious abode earned him a round or three of being Cruciated until he wept like a wee bairn.

He bit his lip so he wouldn't giggle when Crouch the Crotch opened his trunk.

Giggling pissed off Crotch. Crotch believed that giggling meant that Alastor didn't respect him.

The key to the second compartment stuck and Bastard Barty wiggled and jiggled the key.

"Should take better care of the trunk," Alastor growled. "Da always said…take good care of your equipment, laddie, and it will take good care of you."

Didn't Albus notice how slack the boy was? The Real Alastor Moody Locked in his Trunk would never let his gear get buggered up.

Second compartment.

Broken sneakoscopes. An old wand. An invisibility cloak. His second best one. Parchments. Assorted acclamations from the Ministry of Magic for services rendered, a few from India, Germany, even one from Canada.

Third compartment.

Lubrication for his eye. Tune-up kit for his broom. A protective amulet or three that hadn't done shite for him.

Fourth compartment.

Hands began to shake, his body began reacting…

Bastard would come… would bloody Imperio him again… rip his hair from its roots as he needed another graying-formerly ginger lock for his bloody Polyjuice potion. He must be nearly bald now…

Then he'd be forced to listen… listen in bespelled abhorrence and revulsion as Barty Crouch regaled the Real, Steadily Going Absolutely Raving Mad Alastor Moody with exhaustive, explicit erotic epics involving Bastard Barty's ruttings with the insatiable Minx McGonagall. The nastiest times were when Barty decided that Alastor needed to share the experience. The faux Alastor would place Alastor's wand against his unresisting head so he could bloody experience their couplings.

Feel, taste, smell, hear… fragments of Minerva McGonagall and Crouch… pounding her mattress.

"You're an old man, Alastor. Sadly for me, you're a magical cripple with a short, bent wand. Unfortunately, I have to be you…and be a better you than you'd ever be… so I need to know how an old crip like you would bugger an elderly cat woman."

Once, a long time ago… when he was still sane, he and Minerva McGonagall had been Order members. Had been friendly with the witch yet certainly had never bedded her. The thought had never crossed his mind, not even ONCE, as they were polar opposites. Alastor was rough around the edges; Minerva was bit of a priss. A proper sort, prided herself on her good grammar, daintily ate her cucumber sandwiches with the crust cut off, took lady-size sips of tea. Not he, he was happy with a hearty helping of coddle and a good bitter. Cooked the coddle himself using his Mum's recipe and while it wasn't fancy, it was filling.

Minerva McGonagall, so prim, so proper, so respectable.

Alastor Moody so bloody abrasive, so uncompromising.

And apparently she had a sexual appetite that would shame the most depraved Knockturn Alley whore.

And while he was mistaken with regards to Minerva's morals, he had also thought young Crotch was a poof.

Not that the former Alastor had anything against homosexuality. To each their own was his modus operandi.

Alastor had done his own experimenting during his younger, carefree days.

He had been assigned to Albus after the wizard had defeated Gellert. Albus hadn't wanted a guard, yet the Ministry had insisted on the necessity of protecting the Hero of the Magical Realm from possible attack. They had decided that the much younger Moody would be perfect to guard Albus, as though it were possible that Moody could be useful. Perhaps, he could offer to hold Albus' coat when the defeater of Gellert Grindlewald decided to kick down the gates of Hell?

It had been awkward at first, though Alastor's gruff refusal to hero worship Albus had quickly won over Albus. Yes, he was Albus' guard, but Albus would hold no mistaken beliefs about Alastor's allegedly submissive personality. Or at least for long. He made Albus carry his own bags, tartly telling Dumbledore that he was in dire need of the exercise. And while Alastor had to sit through all of Dumbledore's classes, waiting for the student-turned-Assassin to show up, he was not to be considered Albus' teaching assistant. Therefore, Albus could not use him for an example in Human Transfiguration, because Alastor bloody knew that Albus would keep him as ginger haired bear cub for the next week – just so he could have some peace from his overly protective warder. And Alastor the bear cub would do a hell of a lot more damage to Albus' fancy clothes as the first time had been a friendly warning.

They had bonded so well that in time, Albus had made a sweetly awkward pass at him. Delicately phrased just in case Albus was mistaken and that way Alastor would not be offended. Lovers come and go, but good friends, they were not to be discarded lightly.

He was liberal in his personal relationships, so boy-boy didn't squick him in the slightest.

Plus the Auror department was proud of its august traditions. Their noble customs encompassed a wide spectrum, ranging from the spear maidens of the Amazons defending their witches with their last gasp to the Sacred (though ultimately slaughtered) Band of Thebes. He was Albus' paraibatai. A man could take pride in that accomplishment. As Albus was Albus Bloody Dumbledore, Defeater of Gellert. And if the Defender of the Entire Wizardingly World wanted to bed his ugly carcass, well, so bloody be it.

An astonishing amount of wine had been imbibed as Albus had been quite nervous, and their time together had been pleasurable. However, nothing serious had developed. Albus was too wand-shy to want more than an occasional over the ensuing decades and Alastor had his battle against Evil. Plus Moody was partial to the ladies, not the lads. It wasn't that Albus wasn't a nice amusement, but still, Alastor enjoyed the ladies.

Their nocturnal exercises were a well-kept secret twixt them. They were bloody discreet about it, complete with a carefully chosen challenge and response phrases.

And Bloody hell, they were both old men.

Yes, Albus had brought him to Hogwarts in his expressed hopes of teaching Harry Potter how to survive even with that lightning shaped target on his forehead. But bloody hell, Albus hadn't wanted just once to dally while Alastor had been at the school? Though their last few assignations had been more on the lines of long conversations, snogging and a good rub and tug more than any serious mattress bouncing. Both wizards were getting older; Alastor was missing more than his share of body parts but still… Albus hadn't once wanted to get together for old times' sake? Not even for fish and chippies and a good dark brew?

But really, the Auror intel on Azkaban Prisoner Bartemius Crouch, Junior was that he was a bloody poof. Well, a bloody, dead poof who had experimented with the Death Eaters. Just to spite his old man after Junior had been rejected by the Auror Academy for being unsuitable. Like most young men, during his parental rebellion stage, he had discovered himself in the process, including the fact that he was a sadistic, vicious bastard.

And Barty the Bastard was getting off on Alastor being a captive audience subjected to his sexual reminiscences.

And every now and then, Alastor thought that Bastard Barty's couplings with Minerva seemed a bit… repetitively… pornographic. Really, how many times could the witch unhinge her jaw and go down on Barty in his classroom? Without permanently dislocating her jaw? Plus, he thought he remembered Cyrus Jones mentioning that one trick Minerva seemed to prefer… claimed he saw it on a Muggle porn flick. Well, maybe Minerva was a feisty witch with a taste for the kink.

Bloody hell, it wasn't proper to be thinking THAT way. Still he pondered about the duo's sexual escapades, because what else could he do in the bottom of a ten foot Containment in a seven layered magical trunk? Especially when Barty kept throwing their couplings in his face.

Making him watch, making him feel it, making his body react. Making Alastor realize that in his long life, he never once experienced a relationship that had lasted for as long, and for as intensely as Minerva and Barty had. At most, a few months, a couple weeks was more the norm. Actually, closer to one night when his partner freaked out from his scars.

But yes, Barty and Minerva's mergers… seemed… to be focus on the masculine enjoyment…

Really, Minerva had a tart tongue; wouldn't she demand that her partner focus on her satisfaction? She didn't seem to be the dainty, submissive type. That's what he always liked about her; the witch had no qualms about calling Albus Dumbledore a bloody, blooming idiot when required. In Alastor's firm opinion, Albus needed to be told he was a blooming idiot regularly. It helped keep his head a proper size so he could keep wearing those pincushions he called a hat. Especially when there wasn't a gingered-haired bear cub available for having an eppie in Albus' suite.

If he wasn't locked in an iron box with far too much time on his hands, he never would have believed that Minerva and Alastor Moody would be bedding each other. As it was, he only believed it because of his repeated viewings of the rumored tattoos. The thistle on Minerva's right breast along with the Scottish Lion on the small of her back had made a few appearances. Alastor had once overheard a Hogwarts Hen make a quip about them so he knew of the legendary tats, but he had never seen the Lion and the Thistle up close and personal until now. Plus there had been other assorted arcane markings that Minerva had no doubt picked up during her own youthful escapades.

So, if it wasn't really Minerva doing the nightly rumpy pumpy with Barty, Bad boy Barty still knew about her tattoos.

In the darkness, the long nights of darkness in a confined space, his demons… how they taunted him. His long time friend Albus didn't know that Alastor Moody was not Alastor Moody, Arthur Weasley had been shammed also, and Minerva McGonagall was bedding Barty!

Never in their years together had she implied that she had a hankering for his bug ugly corpse, and now she was… wearing out Barty's mattress every bloody night… with Barty's Crotch.

After the first few weeks in darkness, he had begun to forget. Struggling with all his might to resist, he shattered so damn easily. He stopped counting his meals to estimate his captivity length and had long ceased enumerating each time Barty Crouch ripped a ginger lock from his head. Countless, precious memories had slipped from his mind, scattered to the winds like ash.

What his Mum had looked like, how his Da had sounded, what that girl's name was, the one with the pink hair? The one that drove him 'round the bend and back again as she was such a bloody klutz. What it felt like to be human?

Instead of a caged animal.

But his biggest fear was that he would die in his trunk.

And no one would ever know.

No one even suspected that he was in his bloody trunk because nobody bloody knew him at all. That realization was the final straw. The horrible truth shattered his soul, fragmented his resolve.

No one suspected… no one cared… as Junior had replaced Alastor Moody completely…as Albus' brother-in-arms… as Harry Potter's instructor…

The all encompassing darkness of his prison cell had forced him to face the truth.

He was a hollow shell of a man, no close friends, no lover to share his bed. And that blasted Death Eater had situated himself so perfectly as a Better Moody than Alastor was! It was galling that Junior had managed to make such a profound connection with Minerva. It wasn't the sex, well, yes, it was… but it wasn't just the physical. It was the emotional way that the two of them had coupled in a manner that the real Alastor Moody could never have managed.

So many memories slipped away, yet he cataloged and itemized every coupling of Junior with Minerva McGonagall. Because that was his life, forever and ever amen, the soul-destroying darkness liberally spiced with Bartemius' depraved bed time stories.

On the occasions when Barty forgot to feed him and his water bowl had long gone dry, the confined darkness would threaten to completely unman him. He'd snake his hand between his legs, pretend that what he was feeling, was her. That she was there, touching and taunting him in the dark while he whispered encouragements with his cracked lips. Anything, so she wouldn't stop, so he could keep feeling something… even this… that somehow he had made a connection with another human being.

What a cruel minx she was, callously ignoring his pleas. And her bloody tongue… her bloody tongue… and her bloody lips...

If he ever got out, he'd show her… show the minx what it was like to be unmercifully teased… and… and…

If he ever got out of Hell, he'd never be able to look the witch in her eyes again.

No, he'd be staring at her tits. She hid them, but he knew them quite well thanks to Barty. Lovely, full titties they were, a delightful mouthful and more. He'd like nothing more than after a delightful shag to fall asleep, suckling her breast. Barty never mouthed her titties, licking and sucking her sweet, pert nipples. No, he manhandled them, but he never bloody worshipped them.

Probably would be best for her safety and the tattered shreds of her virtue if they weren't in the same room.

I'd like to bugger you senseless. Feel your claws rake my back… Show you what the real Alastor is like.

In all the years I've known you, you never ever once offered to go down on me. But for him… for Barty… you did! In my bloody classroom… You spread your legs for him! And you never thought… you never suspected… that you weren't screwing me!

Another click, and automatically, like the trained dog he was, Alastor Moody peered upward, knowing that he'd only see his bloody doppelganger. Perhaps, Barty would feed him, perhaps not, but no doubt he had a new sexual scenario with Minerva the Nympho that he desired to inflict on his prisoner.

He wasn't expecting to see Albus Dumbledore peering down at him. Albus' eyes were blue, icy flames which meant that Barty the very bad boy, was in a hell of a lot of trouble.

Behind Albus, clad in black was Severus Snape, the allegedly reformed Death Eater, intently staring at the raree show and… there was a green-eyed woman he knew entirely too well. One might say that Alastor Moody knew her biblically. Their eyes met, and she blanched when she realized anew that she had been merrily bouncing in her bed with Barty Crouch, Junior. Her mouth moved in a silent Hex… or prayer… he wasn't sure which it was… or if it was directed towards him… and he was too much of a coward to want to know.

Once was enough for him. He'd never be able to look her in the eyes again because he remembered all those times in the dark, when he rubbed and tugged, pretending it was HER. Imagining that the two of them had reached an easy, longstanding relationship where sex and closeness and trust were cornerstones.

"Alastor, are you alright?" asked Albus. His voice was compassionate and concerned.

Alastor Moody, a former Auror, still had his professional pride. He could just imagine what he looked like. He stunk of unwashed flesh and he was missing his leg and his eye.

However, once an Auror, ALWAYS an AUROR.

Even if he was wearing a tonsure cut and clad only in his smalls.

"I'm fine, Albus," Alastor lied.

-o-0-o-

Alastor Moody was in a private ward at Hogwarts. The Moody Monster had been cleaned, fed and watered and put in a stall for the night. He was talked out, the Ministry blokes and the Aurors had been in to see him, and he had recognized the contempt in their eyes. Stupid, weak Alastor Moody, trapped in his damn magical trunk for the last year.

But he kept his Auror oath, to protect others before himself, so he said not a word about Barty and Minerva. About what Barty had inflicted it on him, because… well, the boys at the office, they wouldn't understand. They wouldn't think it so bad, except for Minerva being a mature witch. In their little minds, it was like experiencing one of those Muggle enhanced skin sensation flics that they were always selling out of an anonymous post office box.

The boys, they couldn't understand the way it ate away at your soul, the difficulty of staying sane in a small box for so long. How easy it was to be forgetting people's faces as your captivity continued and the first slithering, stomach churning slip down the slope of insanity. Doing it because you knew you needed to feel something because once you stop feeling something… anything… you were doomed. And if the woman was banging your Polyjuiced doppelganger, then it was fine if you used her to feel, because since she was riding your broomstick … then by Hell you should be able to use her body.

He didn't do anything nasty to her. Well, the imaginary her. There was no doubt Miss McGonagall would find him hopelessly vanilla after the kinky bastard Barty. No surprise, he was just a friendless crip. After he bedded someone, he always said thank you. Never did he dismiss his lover with a slap on her arse and say 'Same time tomorrow, Tabby.'

It would have been best for him if he had died rather than face the reality of his pathetic life. Dying would have left him with a smidgeon of pride in his last few moments.

Arthur Weasley had done his charity work, already had visited the Monster, carrying a hamper full of food from Molly. It was her way of showing concern and affection. If anyone was experiencing an emotional trauma, Molly Weasley would feed 'em into catatonia.

He was so damn weak that Arthur had to feed him, because his hands shook like he had palsy. The two men had chinwagged a bit, and then Arthur had left. But not before warning him that Molly wished to visit, but promising that it would happen only when Moody was chipper.

Now, Dumbledore was sitting next to his bed, wearing an eye-bleed inducing robe.

"The ward is Warded to our voices only," Albus said to Alastor. "We need to talk and no one will hear what we say. My dear friend, I am so sorry. I should have realized it wasn't you."

"Told me that he was avoiding you," Moody explained. It wasn't Albus' burden that Alastor had gotten hog-tied by a pair of junior Death Eaters. It was Alastor's error and Alastor's blunder alone. "I just guessed that you no longer fancied a shag with me."

It was a bitter jest.

Instead, Albus took his hand in his and spoke the passphrase.

"A little sincerity is a dangerous thing."

Albus wasn't asking for intimacy, he wanted to be absolutely sure it was the real Alastor Moody. And he was reassuring the paranoid Alastor that he was the true Albus Dumbledore.

"And a great deal of it is absolutely fatal," whispered Alastor.

Unexpectedly Albus embraced him, clasping Alastor tightly against him. That simple intimacy overwhelmed him, and Alastor nearly broke down and bawled like a baby moo moo. Just because it had been so bloody long since someone... a friend... had touched him. Albus then released Alastor and positioned several pillows just so on Alastor's bed.

"I had desired to chat. I challenged him with that phrase, and he failed to respond in kind. I wasn't sure if you thought me dangerously reckless to approach you while you were in employment here. You have always been the very epitome of discretion. And I was in the mood to chat, nothing more. So, I let the matter drop," Albus admitted. "I will always blame myself for this."

"Don't," Alastor protested.

There was a long, awkward silence.

"I'm reorganizing the Order." Albus admitted.

Normally, he would have been quite confident in his belief that he would be the first person Albus asked to rejoin the Order. However, times had changed. He was old, thick and dense… he would just slow down Albus and the Order. Best keep his pride intact and not offer his assistance that was unneeded and unsolicited.

"I might like to discuss strategy with you," Albus warily offered. It was though he was feeling out Alastor's interest, as though he truly feared that Alastor might be disinterested. Or more likely the Eagle Eyed Albus had realized that Alastor's legendary iron-hearted resolve was made out of cheap tin and was giving him a way to bow out and save his pride. "Your expertise and knowledge would be invaluable. We lost so many of our senior Order members in the last war."

"I've been in a very dark place for the last months. I don't mean just physically… I mean… mentally. I fear that I am not sane." He admitted that reluctantly, his Auror pride still intact.

"You will heal," Albus insisted. "If I could, I would take you home with me for the summer. You would have the solitude you need to heal, yet not too much isolation. However, recent events have put a damper on us sharing a pleasant summer holiday. There is much I must do; a great deal that I must research on the continent and I would not let you stay alone in my house. I have made other plans, Alastor. I am entrusting you to someone who is quite the formidable witch. There is no one else to whom that I would delegate your recovery. "

No, no, no. His stomach clenched and he felt a heaviness descend on his chest.

"Arthur didn't mention that I'd be minding the Weasley horde over the summer," Alastor quipped.

"No, Alastor. I believe that you will find a Scottish seaside holiday to be far more conducive to your recovery. You will be staying in Clachtoll, nr Lochinver. Near the Clachtoll Bay in a cottage that is only a few yards from the shore. I know how much you enjoy being seaside. "

-o-0-o-

Minerva McGonagall finally stopped heaving into the loo. Roughly, she wiped her mouth with the back of her hand.

Bloody hell, she had shagged Barty Crouch, Junior.

Just the once, but still, days like today, another shower was required. Especially today, as she had been commanded to take Alastor Moody on a nice summer holiday to the Scottish seaside.

Through sheer Scottish grit and determination, she had kept her composure regarding her summer assignment until Albus told she needed to get Alastor back into bed. She had reacted poorly to that, thanks to past associations but fortunately Albus had misunderstood. The dear man thought that she was offended just because he had phrased his request badly. A blushing Albus explained that he didn't want her to share her bed with Alastor; he just wanted to get Alastor back into sleeping in a real bed at night.

The traumatized Auror was sleeping on the floor because he hadn't slept on a mattress since August.

Breath freshened, teeth cleaned, clothing readjusted, armor polished and ready for war, Minerva walked to the Hospital Wing. As anticipated, Alastor Moody was anxiously waiting for her, eager to escape from Madam Pomfrey's tender mercies. The no-longer quite as solid Auror still looked rather haggard from his ordeal. However, Albus had regrown Alastor's missing hair, so he had a shock of ginger hair that he had arranged so it fell in his face. A quick glance and a Muggle might mistake him as a man in a dire need of a haircut. A shaggy man wearing a fake eye that seemed to zip, spin and rotate in a thousand different directions.

Minerva had once thought that Alastor Moody was a mountain of a man, but today, he seemed nothing more than a small, forlorn child wearing his father's great leather coat.

What the bloody hell had happened to Alastor? He had always been the lion-hearted Alastor, more than a bit rough around the edges, but an unyielding as the Rock of Gibraltar.

He looked like a battered tin soldier. Abused and broken, yet still wearing a painted on stubbornness.

That was it; his unflagging self-confidence had gone a burton.

"Ready?" She asked, attempting to have a chipper tone. After all, it was her bloody summer vacation and she was planning on enjoying it, even if she had to mind a traumatized Auror. And face on a daily basis, the reminders of the one time she decided to undo her hair and 'have a frolicking good time with the latest Doomed Professor of Defence against the Dark Arts' as Rolanda Hooch would say.

Why the hell was she feeling so bloody guilty? It wasn't even like it had been very good sex!

He nodded once.

"Are you bringing anything?" Minerva tartly retorted. The man didn't even have so much as a bag packed!

"I no longer have a trunk," Alastor tersely retorted. His tone was flat, emotionless. "I seem to have misplaced it."

"Never fear, I have packed for you, Alastor," Albus assured the Auror. He flashed a wide grin, and then extended his hand. "Take my arm, Alastor."

"Give me the coordinates, Albus. I don't need you to…" Alastor was still vainly protesting when Albus and he Side Along Appararted to Minerva's summer cottage.

-o-0-o-

Albus stayed long enough to be moderately useful, getting a rattled Alastor settled, before he popped off to Khuzestan or Timbuktu with a cheery ta ta. His disappearance left her to entertain a grim, taciturn Alastor Moody who was clomping through her cottage on his one good leg, vigorously testing all the various wards. The grizzled veteran of assorted wars and the survivor of an extended jolly holiday confined in a magically expanded trunk finally nodded his approval.

"It'll do," Alastor decided. Their eyes met and his fake eye began literally seizing. Rotating here and there, hither and fro, anticlockwise and a three sixty. It nearly jumped out of the socket and Alastor slapped his hand against his misbehaving eye. His face was a bright cherry tomato red and if Minerva didn't know it was physically impossible, she would have sworn that Auror Alastor Moody was blushing. However, Aurors never blushed.

"It's been bloody buggered up since Barty Crouch used it!"

Then he thumped and galumphed off to his bedroom where he barricaded the doors with a loud slam.

After so many years of teaching at Hogwarts she had a developed a sensitivity to magic being cast. What Alastor was casting was a nice piece of Charm work yet it was most assuredly directed towards keeping her out off his room.

"I guess I shan't be offering you tea," Minerva decided.

With a complete lack of her usual finesse, Minerva collapsed into her chair. She put her hands over her face and wished for the Patience of Job, the Wisdom of Solomon, the Common Sense of her Great Aunt Tillie, and while she was wishing for the impossible, she'd love to have the body of Venus de Milo.

"Sweet Lord, he knows," she whispered. "He knows."

-o-0-o-

He had been struggling to be a proper gent, but his bloody eye that Barty the Bastard had buggered up had decided it wanted to a gander at Minerva's titties. Nothing as decorous as an admiring glance, or a slightly risqué gander where the buxom beauties would be shyly peeking out of their silk and lace unmentionables… no… it had gone directly to the sight of her naked skin and she bloody had a thistle tat on her right breast. And there was a large Scottish Lion on the small of her back and… bloody hell, she and… Barty Crouch… THEY HAD! Nightly … for nigh near nine months.

While he had been in a bloody trunk for nine months.

He was overwhelmed with a sick desire to show her what the real Alastor could do. Completely understandable, because he had dealt with Barty's Minerva, he had even created a pretend Minerva that he imagined he bedded frequently and now, he was face to face to the real Minerva. And he wanted nothing more than to… He wanted her so damn bad because he needed physical closeness.

For Minerva's sanity, safety and her virtue, Alastor Moody barricaded himself into his rooms, successfully sealing himself off from her. Nothing, not even an owl, could get in, and no one could get out of the room until tomorrow morning. He had a lot he had to process, and he'd hopefully be able to walk until he fell asleep.

It was a wonderful plan, until he realized one small problem. He hadn't had a bite all day and thanks to his bloody dick, he wouldn't be eating until tomorrow.

Steadily, he put one foot in front of the other, pacing the night away. Whether to regain his emotional equilibrium or just exhaust himself into a dreamless slumber, Alastor couldn't say.

After far too long, he closed his eyes and slid down the wall, bracing his back against the corner. Best to sleep in the corner of the room, so one had two walls to your back. Roughly, he took off his fake leg, the cramped muscles protesting against their overuse after so many months of inactivity. Deliberately, Alastor massaged his painful leg, all the way from the bone deep aching stump up to his hip. He worked out the knots in his muscles and eased the cramps.

Without conscious volition, the fierce massaging strokes slowed, became gentler, more teasing. More lover-like. And before long, his hands slipped beneath his waistband.

"Please," he silently mouthed. He kept his eyes closed, to maintain the pretense that it was Minerva who was touching him. "Quick, fast and hard, please."

She never gave him what he wanted.

It was never quick and rough.

It was always prolonged and delayed, the minx teasing him until he was pleading with her, pleading with Barty, pleading with the fake Alastor that yes, it felt so good, that Minerva felt so goddamn good and to please, please, please… . Rationally, he knew it wasn't her, it had never been Minerva doing things to him in the darkness that he'd never dare ask a woman to do… yet she had done it all and more, willingly, to Barty.

He had been forced to relieve their memories… was it truly so bad to use her like this? He didn't enjoy Barty's kinks so what he imagined with the faux Minerva was always hopelessly vanilla…

Damn it, what if the real Minerva overheard him? He should stop this, yet his hands wouldn't stop.

"Please," he whispered. "Please don't stop. This is the only time… I feel … anything… Oh God, Minerva… Oh God …. Please… please… Yes… like that… exactly… like that… "

With a muffled cry, he came so bloody hard that he nearly put a hole in the wall.

"Thank you… You were… splendid…" his voice rumbled deep in his chest. He closed his eyes, and he imagined that she was really there; that he was pulling the covers over her… didn't want her to catch a chill… his rough, callused hand was gentle as he played with her unbound hair. "Simply first rate, girl."

As was the norm, the fuzzy post-coital warmth rapidly fled, leaving him emotionally cored and pensive. He was out of the bloody trunk, damn it.

Why the hell did he long to be back in it?

Because it was safe in the box, in the darkness.

There were no mirrors so he couldn't see his reflection.

He was beyond bug ugly. He was a freak with far too many facial scars and too few body parts. Yes, let the stupid kiddies think his scars were visible badges of honor. He was goddamn repulsive… and his personality was abrasive… and no one…. No one… not Arthur… not Albus… not even Kingsley Shacklebolt bloody knew the man beneath the scars.

And in the darkness, he could pretend that he was the lucky Moody that Minerva had decided to dally with. That someone had decided that there was something worthy in Alastor Moody that made putting up with him a joy rather than a chore.

But in the light, he knew that he wasn't that man. That somehow Junior had managed to woo Minerva McGonagall into a long-term relationship.

The woman Alastor had known for nigh near thirty bloody years. The same woman who had never expressed an interest in his carcass, even before he had accidentally mislaid an eye, a knee and the tip of his nose. Before the LeStranges had thought to carve a dark rune in his bloody face. Before Albus had turned him into a bear cub in front of his students.

Her lack of interest in him, the real Alastor, should have galled him more.

It should hurt his pride more.

The old Alastor would have already confronted Minerva about her repeated dallying with Barty's Crotch and demanded an explanation. The new Alastor, stripped of his dignity, stripped of his foolish notions, didn't need to know why Minerva had decided to dally with Barty's Moody rather than the real Moody.

Because the real Moody was the type of man who'd get overpowered by two punks and stuck in a box for nine months.

And not a goddamn soul would notice! Because he was a goddamn fortress with walls no one thought it worth the effort to breach.

Because he was a disgusting, perverted crip who could only bang one out by having sick fantasies of a woman who didn't deserve to be used that way.

"I'm hollow," he whispered. "A tin soldier dented beyond mending. Throw me in the fire, Albus, and let us be done with the charade known as my life."

And for the first time in far too long, Alastor Moody wept.

-o-0-o-

After a few hours of Alastor wearing a hole in her floor by dragging his leg on the floor, there was silence. To Minerva's horror, she was so focused on what had happened between her and Barty Crouch, Junior on a certain December night that she had just been grateful for the quiet.

Had he fallen?

If it was anyone else, she'd go in wands a blazing, however recent events suggested that action would cause Alastor to jump to the defense. Best find out if he needed help first. Minerva twisted and shifted and before long a little grey tabby with spectacle markings appeared in her place. She needed a good stretch so she flexed before flicking her paws.

That done, she bounded over to the closed door and crept as close as she could to the door jam. Her sensitive cat ears twitched and pivoted as she strained to hear the very soft sounds.

If felines blushed, at that moment she'd be a blushing silver tabby.

Oh dear God, Alastor Moody… he was not doing what it sounded like. He was not… bloody hell, he was!

Alastor Moody was banging out one and pretending it was HER.

Her wry bemusement turned to an angry mortification when she realized that he was pleading with her… beseeching Barty… fawning over how good she felt… how good she was… but to please stop teasing him….

What the bloody hell did Barty do to Alastor? He must have informed Alastor about the Yule Ball where I made a rather colossal mistake. But Alastor is asking Barty to please stop.

Dear God, Barty didn't inflict THAT on Alastor?

He didn't force Alastor to… did he? And yet Alastor's pleading with me …

How the hell am I supposed to deal with this? How do I make it all better?

He sharply inhaled at his pinnacle and then he slowly exhaled.

To Minerva's surprise, he thanked her. Well, the not-real her but the imaginary her. Rumbled his appreciation and about how she was so bloody first rate.

Barty-Alastor didn't act like that after our fling. He acted like a nineteen year old boy face to face with a naked woman for the first time. All his hormones, all his needs…

I should have realized that it wasn't Alastor in Alastor's bed. Because he didn't act like the Alastor I knew.

The one that had picked up Neville so carefully after Frank and Alice were hurt.

The only one that could rock Neville to sleep those first few nights, the only one audacious enough to perform the Obliviate spell on young Neville so he'd forget seeing his parents Crucioed. In direct contradiction of Augusta's expressed desires. She wanted Neville to always remember so he'd revenge his parents. Alastor wanted to give Neville as normal a life as possible, because he knew Alice and Frank would want that. Though he admitted that he knew that wish was doomed, what with Augusta, Algie and Enid.

Silence, then he muttered something and even with her tabby ears, she couldn't hear what he said. But after being a teacher at a boarding school for so long, she recognized the tell-tale sounds of someone trying to muffle their sobbing.

It was her uncertainty on how to proceed, that's what stopped her from changing back to her Minerva Form and then knocking on his door.

Not her cowardice.