Luck's Limits

Summary:Fanfiction for "Fate's Favourite" by The Fictionist. Harry Potter survived Lord Voldemort by being lucky. Tom Riddle met Harry Potter as an insane quirk of luck. And the people who have taken Zevi Prince are about to find their luck has run out.

Disclaimers:
1. I don't own Harry Potter.
2. I don't own Fate's Favourite.
3. I don't really know what I'm doing and I really hope this turns out okay. Okay?

You need to read "Fate's Favourite" by the Fictionist to understand this fic.

Where did Draco and parents go? I don't know. They went on a nice visit to the moon for "plot reasons". Same thing with the manor being conveniently right outside of Hogsmeade. No idea where it originally was. You have no idea how hard I struggled to come up with an intricate plot and then just… well, read for yourself! In my defense, I've been pretty sick over xmas and it wasn't pleasant!

The Fictionist- Hope you enjoy it! If you like it a 10th of the amount I love Fate's Favourite, I'll be a happy (and hopefully more healthy) individual!


Luck's Limits

Tom Riddle was in one of his moods… this wasn't terribly strange, Harry mused, as he was always in a mood, rarely good. Harry studied him silently, looking at the rather implacable set to his face… Lucky him, having the priviledge of dealing with this. Well, again, that wasn't new, Tom Riddle was rather implacable, in general.
"People are going to get ideas when you're staring at me like that, darling," Tom drawled.

"People seem to get ideas no matter what I do," Harry replied dryly, but secretly feeling rather relieved they were no longer at Hogwarts.
They were, oddly enough, at a mansion he'd never thought he'd be visiting… Draco Malfoy's house. Abraxas had spent the last three days critiquing all of the changes in the mansion and criticising everything new and old.
Harry had just tuned him out, Tom, amused, had ignored Abraxas in favour of watching Harry deal with this. Harry had gone through the stages of being incredulous (he'd never lived in such finery), agreement (it was a bloody ugly vase, Abraxas had that one right), bemusement (how long could he really rant for?), frustration (three days and counting, apparently), disbelief (Who even cared this much?) and finally "MERLIN'S BALLS ABRAXAS SHUT THE HELL UP!" Harry snapped finally. With a grin, Abraxas stopped.

"What?" Harry sighed.

"Zevi owes me 10 galleons. He said you'd snap before the first day was up," Abraxas commented with a rather genial sneer. Harry rolled his eyes and turned back to the breakfast table.
Lestrange glared at Harry, before staring adoringly at Tom. That whole thing was getting old too. Harry rolled his eyes. Alphard, approaching the table behind Lestrange gave a rather good impression of a mentally incompetent, adoring Lestrange. Harry snickered at Lestrange who looked suspicious but remained unaware, before turning back to Tom.

"Where's Zevi this morning?" Harry questioned between bites of toast. If he hadn't been looking at Tom, he'd never have noticed the slight flicker of his eyes that gave him away.

"Transferring your affections to Prince? How fickle of you…" Tom commented coolly, but Harry had known him for too long now to be truly worried. Something was going on, but what? And if he asked, Tom might just decide to be especially stubborn and not tell him just to spite him. It wouldn't surprise him…

Sighing, Harry got up and walked back to his room aimlessly. He wasn't 100% sure what he would do, but for once he had a relatively drama-free holidays. Naturally Sirius had been rather… reluctant… to let him stay at Malfoy Mansion but Tom had been rather… insistent. He always was.
He was waiting in the room he shared with Tom when the other came in, eyes taking in Harry's abject aimlessness in amusement.
"At a loss now there's no one to save?" Tom taunted, but this time, Harry had a comeback. Hiding his expression by turning to face the window, Harry repeated his question from earlier.

"Where's Zevi, Tom?" Harry felt like smirking as he felt Tom practically hiss.

"Who says he's anywhere important?" Tom challenged Harry, moving towards him like a predator. Harry felt the crescent marks on his arm move and knew they looked like a snake.

"You did," Harry answered defiantly. Tom moved inches from his face, so close they were practically breathing each other's air.

"Oh? Did I now?" Tom murmured quietly, before lifting a hand up to touch Harry's face with his fingertips. The touch was light, tracing down the side of his face gently. Harry ignored the urge to frown and back away, and was rewarded by a quiet laugh.

"You just never know what's good for you, Evans," Tom let his finger trace over Harry's lips, reminding him uncomfortably that Tom was willing to cross boundaries Harry was not.

"It's Potter now, remember?" Harry deliberately took a step back and turned away, ignoring the mocking gaze Tom aimed his way.

There was a momentary pause as Tom made a decision.

"Prince is missing," Tom informed Harry lightly, watching has he sucked in a surprised gasp of air. Harry spun to face Tom.

"Missing?" Harry's eyes narrowed.

"That was what I said, was it not?" Tom retained his laid back demeanor.

"How?" Harry fixed all of his attention on Tom, and Tom deliberately grew even more casual.

"I'm not his babysitter darling," Tom drawled.

"You don't know, do you?" Harry taunted, having figured out that unfortunate consequences aside, it was usually the quickest way to find out information… if Tom was ever going to tell him.
Tom's eyes flashed back to Harry, and he smirked, looking directly into Harry's eyes.

"You know, that lack of respect for your superiors will get you in trouble one day," Tom sat down on the nearest chair like it was a throne and despite himself, Harry couldn't help but admire his charisma.

"What superiors?" Harry raised an eyebrow back and Tom just smirked again, before the smirk disappeared.

"Prince and Lestrange went into Hogsmede yesterday. They were supposed to meet up back here, but Prince never returned," Tom relayed, his face not showing his thoughts.

"Fucking Lestrange," Harry sneered.

"Do you think Lestrange had something to do with it?" Tom inquired, and Harry could tell he'd come to his own conclusions and just wanted to know what Harry thought.

"Well… Lestrange has the sulks up again…" Harry rolled his eyes and continued, "…but I'm not really sure he has the wit to plot and win against us," Harry mused. Tom's smirk widened.

"Did you realize you just said 'against us'?" Tom smiled darkly, and Harry met his eyes in surprise.
Harry contemplated a moment before answering.

"If he's taken one of our friends, then it is against 'us'," Harry refuted, but Tom didn't lose his smile, the one Harry called "the cat that got the cream". He also made no comment about Zevi being a follower, not a friend, and Harry glossed over this in his thoughts.

"Honestly though, Zev'd have to have been taken completely by surprise for Lestrange to take him," Harry mused.

"I don't think even Prince trusts Lestrange… so he would have had to have planned it thoroughly. I'll have Malfoy do some digging," Tom began planning mentally, turning away as he almost forgot about Harry.

"Well, what IS the plan?" Harry reminded him impatiently.

"You'll find out…" Tom called back over his shoulder as he walked out of the room. Harry glared back at the elaborate doors of the Malfoy Library.

"I bloody hate when he does that," Harry complained quietly to the empty room.

...
...

Harry was still mentally complaining while walking in Hogsmeade. A sulky but alive Lestrange was by his side, Abraxas and Tom off elsewhere subtly questioning the shopkeepers, trying to locate Zevi's last whereabouts. He'd been a little miffed Tom had seen fit to deliberately not tell him his efforts, but after all this time, he understood Tom enough that it was about keeping control.
Abraxas had questioned Lestrange (under Veritaserum, unknowingly given and unthinkingly drunken in adoration that Tom had finally acknowledged Lestrange by carelessly passing him a glass) and had been satisfied that he knew nothing of Prince's whereabouts.

That still didn't excuse pairing Harry with Lestrange, especially since Alphard got to stay at Malfoy mansion. As if he realized Harry was thinking of him, Lestrange turned and sneered at Harry before they walked into yet another shop.
Another thought that had occurred to him was that Tom might have been the one who… disappeared Zevi. As uncomfortably as it made Harry's stomach clench, Harry honestly didn't think this was the case. First of all, Tom seemed to be trying to avoid that path even though he thought it was inevitable. Secondly, while Tom's acting skills were fantastic when he chose, Harry didn't think they were that good.
He'd seen the twitch in his face, the tension in his body. He'd seen the dark look as Tom considered Lestrange's involvement, and it hadn't boded well for Lestrange. Odd as it might be, Harry thought Tom was rather… possessive of his Slytherins. Someone had touched one of Tom's friends and Tom didn't like it. Of course, someone had touched one of Harry's friends too, one of the only things that would make him put up with Lestrange's pointless fucking whining.

"Shut it Lestrange, you're more vacant than a fucking deserted island…" Harry muttered after they'd tried yet another store without success.

"He'll get tired of you soon enough Potter, then you'll regret ever crossing me," Lestrange hissed.

"Ping! Oh, that's me deflecting your bullshit with my shield of not being absolutely fucking rubbish," Harry murmured carelessly, intent on his musing.
Upon thinking of his last thoughts, he realized Tom wouldn't have thought of Zevi as a friend, more a follower… no, a possession even. One thing all of his future death eaters knew was, you did not touch Tom Riddle's things. Ever.
Lestrange growled and went for his wand but Harry was faster.

"In case you didn't get that Lestrange- you're absolutely fucking rubbish," Harry sneered, and considered the time. He had 5 minutes, which was, if he was lucky, enough to a) hex Lestrange and leave him there, b) hopefully get an ice cream but be late to meet Tom, or c) get to the meeting place a few minutes early, usually a
good idea when Tom was worked up.

...

"You're late," Tom stated coldly.

"Want some ice cream Tom? It's strawberry. Delicious!" Harry piped up grinning.

"Oh, Prince'll be real glad to know you're so worried you stopped for ice cream…" Abraxas rolled his eyes.

"You wound me Abraxas! I bet Alphard would have understood!" Harry said dramatically, at the same time Tom arched an eyebrow.

"Where is he?" Tom almost sighed, except that the next dark lord did not sigh.

"Where is who?" Harry licked his ice cream innocently.

"Where is that useless pile of shit Lestrange?" Tom repeated himself in Parseltongue.

"Down a toilet somewhere? How should I know?"Harry replied in the same vein.

"You're testing my patience Harry…"Tom hissed angrily, and Harry knew when to stop.

"Left him down the Alley next to the fortune teller…"Harry couldn't help a slight smile.

"Abraxas… He's in the Alley next to the fortune teller. Go find him," Tom ordered, and figuring it was best to stay silent, Abraxas did.
Harry, looking far too pleased with himself, took another lick of the ice cream and was taken by surprise when Tom's finger suddenly entered his mouth. Tom retracted his finger lightning-fast, before Harry could try to spit it out, and all Harry could do was stare at him in something like horror as Tom put his finger into his own mouth consideringly.

"Mmm," Tom's eyes bored into Harry's, "Strawberry… but I've had better," Tom taunted and started walking off. Harry stared, disturbed, at his ice cream cone, which was slowly melting over his hand. He didn't really have the heart to eat it anymore.

"Well, what are you waiting for Harry?" Tom's cheerful mask was back on, and he seemed like any teenager enjoying the holidays in Hogsmeade. He's dangerous, Harry realised for what seemed the 100th time.
He followed.

...

"So what did we work out?" Harry finally worked up the courage to ask. He knew Tom found something, because otherwise Tom would have just sent them off again to "try harder". Sometimes Harry thought there wasn't a more annoying phrase in existence.

"Prince was being trailed in Knockturn Alley," Tom said in clipped tones.

"Legilimency?" Harry questioned in Parseltongue, "Who?"

"Cormac McLaggen,"Tom replied, and Harry felt a sneer cross his face.

"Deserves to be handcuffed to Lestrange for life, that one…" Harry shook his head in disgust.

"You know, I think that's almost worse than what I had planned for him…" Tom mentioned conversationally.

"Tom…" Harry stopped dead in the middle of Hogsmede.

"Keep up darling," Tom called back lightly.

"Tom," Harry ran to catch up with him.

"That's my name," Tom's temper appeared to be shortening quickly as he lead them out of Hogsmede and down the path to Abraxas' house. He had to know what Harry was going to say.

"No unforgivables Tom. You can't kill him, you can't torture him," Harry interjected quickly.

"Can't I?" This time Tom stopped, turning to face him so quickly Harry literally ran into his chest. Tom's hand moved up in a vice grip to Harry's jaw and lifted. Harry tilted his head but Tom kept pushing until Harry was right on his toes, struggling to balance. Tom repeated himself quietly.
"Can't I?"

"Please don't!" Harry managed to get out. With a considering look, Tom pushed Harry away so hard he almost fell over.

"You know, this is why you have no friends," Harry spat, rubbing his jaw.

"You wound me," Tom uttered dryly.
Harry straightened up and stomped away, heading for his room when he heard Tom's voice floating back to him.

"No death, no torture… if he's alive and unharmed."
Harry sighed. The prick made it so hard to hate him sometimes.

...

"You're so brilliant Tom!" Lestrange practically gasped, staring over the Cauldron in one of the Malfoy's many creepy basement dungeons. Harry had to stifle a smirk at the thought of what Zevi would have said, had he been here. As it was he was entertaining himself mentally with "Lestrange locked in the dungeon with…" stories.
"Stop being a sycophant, Lestrange," Harry muttered and saw Alphard's mouth twitch slightly in agreement. Cygnus hissed in anger but learnt long ago that Tom liked Harry better.

"A tracing spell?" Alphard muttered, almost with trepidation.

"Yes, Black. Problem?" Tom asked silkily.

"No," Alphard replied quickly.

"I haven't heard of those…" Harry began and Lestrange laughed at him.

"Of course you haven't, they're high level dark magic," Lestrange taunted.

"Problem?" Tom repeated turning to Harry.

"There aren't any… sacrifices… are there?" Harry asked, looking directly at Tom.

"Only a small child," Abraxas said innocently, almost yelping when Tom glared at him.

"Only a memory," Tom said smoothly.

"That's it? There's nothingelse I might have qualms over?" Harry asked specifically.

"Harry, you have qualms over everything," Tom said dryly.
Harry stared at him, not backing down.

"No, I don't think you'll have a problem with anything else," Tom informed him, before adding in Parseltongue, "That's why I picked this spell."

"So… what do we do then?" Harry asked, quietly touched that Tom had gone to the trouble of finding a relatively light-ish dark spell.

"Because there's 3 of us, two of us need to contribute two memories to get the required 5," Alphard informed them.

"Three?" Harry asked confused.

"Well, Tom's not going to lose his memories, is he?" Lestrange looked at Harry as if he were ridiculous.

"He's not?" Harry asked, before recalling, "Wait, lose?"

"I will contribute a memory. Lestrange, you will contribute two," Tom ordered, and the others tried to hide their surprise. Lestrange, stupidly enough, seemed to think he was being honoured by being chosen to give two.

"Lose?" Harry reminded.

"It's dark magic Harry, there has to be some sacrifice. Whatever memory you give of Zevi you lose forever," Abraxas explained.

"And you have to give a decent one or the spell will be weak and fail," Alphard warned.

"Anything else I need to know?" Harry asked, consideringly.

"You need to give your blood. It's a blood tracing spell that's been modified to find someone based on memories, not blood. You give your blood to power the spell and your blood links to the memories and the spell searches for the person in the memories," Abraxas explained and then paused. Tom looked bored.

"… when it finds the person, it projects a memory of their location into your head, replacing the sacrificed memory. It's… rather… painful," Abraxas finished. Harry wasn't particularly worried about the pain aspect. He nodded and turned to face the cauldron.

Tom returned with a silver knife. He made a quick, precise cut and let his blood drop into the cauldron without expression. He then wiped the knife and almost handed it to Abraxas before reconsidering and giving it to Harry first. Harry vaguely wondered why , but ignored it, missing the almost imperceptible stiffening of Alphard and Abraxas' shoulders.
Grimacing a little, he lowered the knife to his skin only to be surprised when Tom sighed and intervened.

"Wrist," Tom ordered, grabbing the knife. Harry looked at him uneasily as Tom waited, before giving a tiny sigh himself and holding his hand out to Tom. After all, it couldn't be worse than Crucio.
Again, the cut was small and precise, stinging faintly, but Harry conceded it was probably neater than if he'd done it himself. The experience was oddly intimate, as Tom held his eyes, Lestrange's gaze burning angry holes into them. Tom wiped the cloth again and then handed the knife to Abraxas, who hesitated minutely, looked at Tom and then cut himself quickly. It was deeper, and not as neat as Tom's. Abraxas then did something that made Harry smirk and Lestrange scowl- even though Lestrange was next to Abraxas he passed the knife across the cauldron to Alphard, who also smirked at Lestrange.

"Now we add the memories," Abraxas informed them all for Harry's sake.

"Wand to your temple, select your thought, make it a powerful one but remember you will lose it. Then draw the memory from your temple and place it in the cauldron. Lestrange, you need two," Abraxas continued, before raising his want to his temple.
Harry thought hard about Zevi and their experiences together. When he'd first met Zevi, it was like a clean, less oily version of Snape- not so conducive to a wonderful friendship.
Then again, Abraxas reminded him of Malfoy and Alphard of Sirius. He remembered Zevi and Alphard taking Lestrange's seat the morning after he tried to poison Harry, and… ah. Harry remembered Zevi warning him about Tom's manipulations and how it was important for him to stay friends with Ron and Hermione.
That was the one… the strongest memory he had of Zevi and his sacrifice. If he was lucky, it would work and they would be able to find their friend.

Thinking carefully of the memory and regretting he had to lose it, Harry drew it out from his temple before lowering is wand downwards. He watched the white wisp for a moment and then, distracted, slipped his eyes sideways. Tom Riddle, concentrating, was withdrawing his memory. Harry wished he knew what it was, but knew better than to ask.
Around him, he saw Alphard, Abraxas and Lestrange lowering their memories into the cauldron and with a start, realised his memory had paused halfway down his wand. Quickly returning his attention, he forced it into the cauldron where it hissed and disappeared into the mixture with a sizzle.
Harry wondered what the ingredients were, and belatedly wished he'd been there when Abraxas made the potion.

Tom said there were no sacrifices
, he reminded himself.
Tom lies, his mind reminded him.
Done with his memory, he looked back over to the others. Tom was already finished, having forced his memory down smoothly. Another thought occurred to him, and he wondered what memory he had submitted. He knew it had to be something important, and even understanding why he didn't know it, it bothered him. He hated the niggling sense that something was wrong, and it reminded him of Tom obliviating him.

Ignoring the uncomfortable sensation, he focused back as Lestrange forced his second memory down and they were done. The potion bubbled and Harry felt an uncomfortable tickling in his head. Instinctively looking to Tom, he saw Tom half sneer in distaste at the prying sensation, and then the tickling turned into an ache. The ache started throbbing and Harry grimaced as a sharp pain pierced his head.
They did say it would hurt…

It hurt so much his vision was blurring, blurring and and transforming... It wasn't the pain, it was the location!
"Where is it?" He heard Tom hiss in pain.

"What?" Lestrange asked groggily.

"Where is it?" Tom repeated in English.

"I don't recognize…" Abraxas muttered, clutching the side of his head.

"Think!" Tom thundered, and then appeared to regret it.

"Alphard? Lestrange?" Tom checked.

"No bloody idea…" Alphard replied glumly.

"Me either…" Lestrange admitted.

"All this for nothing…" Abraxas cursed.

"Perhaps not nothing…" Tom informed them silkily, looking at Harry.

"I know," Harry muttered. "I know where it is."

...

"When were you in the Shrieking Shack?" Alphard asked, as they made their way hurriedly back towards Hogsmeade.

More importantly sweetheart, why were you in the Shrieking Shack?" Tom muttered, clearly still suffering the same headache Harry was.
Harry, feeling perverse, just gave Tom his most innocent look, thinking that it actually made him feel a little better.

"That's just disturbing," Abraxas said.
Lestrange glared.

"Do I have to leave you in a bin this time, Lestrange?" Harry asked in a singsong voice. Lestrange gave a choked sound but after looking at Tom, said nothing. If looks could kill, Harry would have been very, very dead.
Harry blithely ignored this, walking along.
At their quick pace, they arrived at the Shrieking Shack, Harry and Tom realised with some surprise they were the only ones moving forward. Harry looked back, seeing the other three paused and staring at the shack.

"Frightened?" Tom asked scornfully, and the others almost jumped, Lestrange almost running forward to make up for his hesitation.

"It's not really haunted," Harry assured them, and Tom raised an eyebrow.

"How intriguing, you'll have to tell me all about it later, darling," Tom said quietly, and Harry resigned himself to another legilimency attack. He hoped like hell his occlumency skills were improving.

When they got in there, Harry looked around quickly, trying not to let the memories overwhelm him. Sirius… he was free now, Peter was caught and kissed… he had a new memory to focus on now. Trying to remember the angle of the memory, he looked around to find Tom had already started walking, looking around carefully.

"Zevi? Zevi?" Alphard called.

"Merlin's wonky peni-" Abraxas yelped, sounding appalled.

"Did you find him?" Alphard called and Tom strode over quickly. Harry started to move over when Tom turned around, his face cold and unforgiving.

"Leave, now," Tom ordered.

"What?" Alphard questioned, confused.

"Could you not hear me? I said leave," Tom ordered, and Lestrange practically ran out, Alphard and Abraxas beginning to walk to the door.

"Abraxas, stay," Tom ordered, and Abraxas froze. His face looked like he was trying to be impassive, but Harry could see his nerves. They were shot to hell.
Harry didn't move.

"Darling, I did ask you to leave," Tom spoke to Harry directly.

"I thought it was more of a suggestion," Harry tried.

"So be it. But don't complain. And whatever I say, you follow it," Tom warned him.
Harry felt a sliver of apprehension at whatever it was that had Tom so serious. He approached without answer, Tom taking his movement as consent.

"Is Zevi okay?" Harry asked quietly, frightened.
Tom and Abraxas moved back and Harry saw Zevi.

"Zevi?" Harry tried.
The boy at his feet stared back, tear tracks running down his dirty face.

"Is that my name?" Zevi whispered.
Harry's stomach lurched at the helpless looking boy, remembering the cunning Slytherin. It seemed obscene that these could be one and the same.

"Can we fix him?" he heard Abraxas ask quietly.
Tom's face tightened, making Harry more concerned.

"Yes," Harry bent down so he was level with Zevi who half shied away from him.

"Always the hero," Abraxas murmured, but his heart wasn't in it.

"It's going to be okay Zevi, we're your friends. We'll look after you, get you back to normal," Harry was reassuring Zevi, who looked hopefully at him, before wincing.

"Are you hurt?" Abraxas said sharply, causing Zevi to draw back.
Tom bent down, slowly reaching out to Zevi, who turned to him.

"Look into my eyes," Tom instructed calmly, and Zevi unthinkingly did.
Harry had an unpleasant shock, as he realised Tom could nonverbally cast Legilimens. Whatever Tom saw, he didn't like, straightening up stiffly.

"Shop keepers chased him out. He hasn't eaten for over 24 hours. Some shop keepers kicked him," Tom ground out.
Harry composed his face before he started turning it into a snarl.

"Left wrist, ribs, kidney," Tom advised.

"Hey, we'll heal you," Harry put his hand on Zevi's shoulders, as Abraxas and Tom walked a few paces away to converse in quiet tones.

"What are they saying?" Zevi asked quietly.

"I think they're just discussing the best options to get your memory back," Harry smiled, hiding his fear that the curse was permanent.
In the meantime, Harry aimed his wand at Zevi, alarmed when he shrank back, cowering.

"Don't worry, I'm just going to heal you," Harry reassured him, smiling with a serenity he most definitely did not feel inside. His anger was slow burning, but unlikely to stop anytime soon.
Zevi relented and remained still, if apprehensive.

"Episky!" Harry incanted, watching as Zevi's hand fixed itself with an audible snap. Harry continued to heal him, as Tom and Abraxas returned.

"Can you fix it?" Harry hissed quietly, patting Zevi reassuringly at his startled movement.

"Yes," Tom answered shortly, before pointing his wand at Zevi. Harry patted him again, and he relaxed minutely.

"Move away Harry," Tom instructed, and Harry nodded, smiling back at Zevi.

"Restoratium!" Tom cast.
Zevi jerked violently, clutching his head as Harry held his breath, watching. Abraxas looked sorely as if he wanted to be anywhere else, and Harry wondered why.
Zevi lifted his head, his eyes pained, confused, furious, frightened, and then oddly blank.

"You came for me," Zevi said quietly, looking down at his dirty, tattered clothes.

"Of course," Harry answered automatically, and Zevi gave a sort of smile-slash-grimace. He lifted his hands and Harry could hear his teeth grinding as he tried to control the rollercoaster of his emotions.

"Scrougify?" Abraxas suggested almost… sensitively, but Zevi almost growled at the suggestion. Harry was taken aback, before he met Tom's eyes and analysed it as Harrison Evans would.

Power, it all came back to power. Abraxas had seen Zevi powerless, and Zevi hated the weakness. Of course, Harry and Tom had also seen Zevi, but Tom was Zevi's superior and Harry was untouchable as long as Tom favoured him. Harry was torn between his sympathy and his own fierce hatred of being pitied.

"Scrougify," Tom cast without warning, and Zevi instantly looked a lot clearer. For a moment, Zevi glared at Tom, before casting his eyes to the floor. Tom did not comment, but Harry had a feeling he would not make allowances for a second challenging glare.

"Reparo," Harry said quietly, and his clothes fixed themselves as best they could.

"Almost as good as new…" Abraxas tried to be positive, but the mood was anything but.

"We don't talk of this…" Zevi tried for an order, but it came as a plea.

"Abraxas and Harry will be… discreet," Tom's assurance came down on him like an order, but he sought Zevi's eyes anyway and nodded.
As they made their way outside, they saw Alphard and Lestrange waiting with a carriage. Tom didn't comment, but cast an approving nod towards Alphard as they all climbed in.
Alphard and Lestrange were clearly dying to know what happened, but they knew better and the tense mood discouraged them. The ride back to Malfoy manor was silent and Zevi retired to his rooms as soon as they were back. Harry hadn't the heart to interrupt him, and even Tom was restless. They went to sleep, still unsettled.

...

With only a few days left before their return to Hogwarts, Harry was trying to track down Zevi for a talk. Zevi had successfully avoided him for days and he'd almost turned around, when he heard voices coming from one of the Malfoy's rooms.

"… you satisfied?" Tom's voice floated out.

"Not satisfied enough," Zevi replied darkly.

"You've gotten your revenge on the shop keepers… there's only McLaggen to go," Tom reminded him, and Harry's eyes widened.

"Revenge… petty torture that they don't even remember, I want to crush them like they did…" mewent unstated, but Harry's stomach clenched at the knowledge Zevi had tortured the shopkeepers.

"You know for now we're limited in what we can accomplish," Tom reminded Zevi calmly, as Harry's foot started getting pins and needles. He shook his foot a little, shifting his weight and to his horror, a creak sounded. Instantly, Tom was at the door.

"Eavesdropping sweetheart? How rude," Tom's eyes flashed. Zevi looked torn.

"Leave us," Tom instructed Zevi, and Harry did not look at his friend as he left the room.

"Torture, Tom?" Harry asked coldly. Tom simply raised an eyebrow.

"You said you wouldn't use the unforgivables!" the sentence burst out of Harry, indignant, betrayed.

"If Evans, IF he was unharmed," Tom reminded him.

"It's Potter. And he's fine now!" Harry protested.

"Is he really?" Tom asked silkily, and Harry guiltily knew his statement didn't ring quite true. Zevi wasn't fine and he knew it.

"In any case, I haven't used an unforgivable," Tom informed him, unimpressed.

"You didn't?" Harry half hoped he'd been wrong, but knew better than to believe it.

"Why would I need to? Not when I know curses to flay the skin off people's backs," Tom smiled, and his smile was so at odds with his words that Harry took a step back without meaning to.

Another thought occurred to him.
"What are you going to do to Cormac?" Harry demanded. McLaggen was an arse who deserved what he got, but he didn't condone torture.

"What do you think I'm going to do Harry?" Tom grinned and lazily moved towards him.

"Don't do it Tom, I won't let you," Harry warned him, mind racing furiously, relieved he had a few days to plan before they went back to Hogwarts.

"You have another suggestion?" Tom asked, waiting, eyes intense.

"We could come up with one," Harry's mind raced, trying to think of something suitable.

"We don't need to. And you will let me, but you won't even know it," Tom's voice was implacable, and Harry reached urgently for his wand.

"Tom don't do this…" Harry hated him, hated him for tampering with Harry, for being the kind of person who could and would torture others… and for turning Zevi into someone Harry no longer recognized.

"Tom!" His wand wasn't rising fast enough, he wasn't going to make it…

"Obliviate!"

...
...

Harry was in a good mood; Lestrange had been largely absent, Tom was rather accommodating and even Zevi, who'd been strangely withdrawn, was starting to come back to life. He didn't know quite what had happened, when he'd asked Abraxas, he told him with a funny look that it was family business. Harry supposed finding out Snape was your only family would be a hard pill to swallow. Still, they'd gotten through the holidays, no one had died and he hadn't had a vision from Voldemort once. With a small smile, Harry thought it was better not to question his luck, and headed off to the Hogwarts Express.

Fin.


Author's (way too long) Note:
1) I was watching X-Men: First Class with my sister and Eric and Charles reminded me of Tom and Harry from Fate's Favourite. You could see Charles working so hard to turn Eric to the "good" side and Eric wishing so hard Charles would join his side. You could also see it was inevitable they would part, which made me quite sad.
My favourite part was them teaming up to kick arse, and then I thought, when exactly would Tom and Harry team up to kick arse? And then it came to me- to rescue Zevi. But that brought its own complications…
2. First of all, any character I brought in to steal him obviously had to suffer Tom's wrath. If Zev had been really injured, it could have been absolutely emotionally charged, but then the punishment would clearly be death. And then Harry couldn't be involved or the dynamics would change forever. Also, to have the character snatching/hurting him mean something, they had to have some important (preferably Pureblood or Ministry) connection, and anyone with an important connection couldn't just disappear or be tortured to Tom's standards or questions would be asked!
3. In the end, I went for something rather tame to satisfy these dilemmas within a reasonably short time frame. I'd love to hear feedback on how people could have done it better, because honestly? I'm shithouse at planning "I never saw it coming!" twists! I did try a bit at the end but I felt it was a little… limp.
4. Tom giving Harry the knife second is significant because firstly, he considers Harry second only to him, this could also imply caring for Harry's welfare taking into account blood borne diseases, and secondly, he forces Abraxas and Alphard to dirty their pure blood despite the knife being wiped- something almost unheard of (Hence the stiffening of their shoulders). Lestrange naturally gets the knife last- a sign of his low standing in the group- he still suffers Harry's half blood and is more likely to get any disease the others may have.
5. Restoratium, in Latin, means absolutely bloody nothing, because I was too lazy to look anything up. Feel free to come up with something and I'll replace it.
6. Tom sends Alphard and Cygnus out of the Shrieking Shack so they don't see Zevi so badly weakened. It's almost a gesture of mercy. Abraxas doesn't get sent out because he's already seen Zevi, and naturally Harry, being Tom's favourite, gets to stay.
7. Yes, Abraxas was saying "Merlin's wonky penis".
8. Nope, Harry remembers nothing about Zevi's departure because Tom's a sneaky bastard. I was also going to have Harry entertain Zevi with his tales of humiliating Lestrange, but quickly realised Zevi would hardly relish hearing about someone else being helpless, even if it was Harry leaving Lestrange tied up in Hogsmede somewhere. I'm not at all satisfied with the ending, I may go back and fix it later.
9. OMG deciding on the title was so bloody hard. I wanted it to have something to do with possessions, something to connect to how Tom thinks of Zevi, but finding P synonyms for fate? Not as easy as you might think. Every synonym for Fate and/or possession began with a different letter. In the end, I went with what I feel is a weak theme of luck. Let me know if you can improve it!
Any mistakes, message/review and I'll correct them later with gratitude, because it's past 2am and I'm freaking tired!

The Fictionist, I hope you liked it!

Lastly,
Pants.
xx Nara Merald