This was my pinch-hit for the 2013 Dramione Remix Round 4 entry (dramione-remix . livejournal . com). This story won a Mod's Choice Award at the fest (each of the Mods got to pick their favourite story from the submissions, and I was so very surprised and honoured to learn that Mod Kim picked this one as hers! Thank you, Mod Kim!).
The fest is over and reveals are out, so I can post this for you here. This fanfic is multi-chaptered, and I will put up a chapter a week until it's done. Also, there will be a few extra scenes added in here that were taken out of the original fest submission, so if you read this story over at the Dramione Remix site, you're in for some bonus story material here, so give it another read, yeah? :)
Here was the prompt I worked from:
Prompt: Rogue x Gambit (X-Men comics)
Thank you to my beta, LadySashi, who once again rode to the rescue and made the story shine. Thank you to the Mods for putting on this fest again - always a fun-filled time!
DISCLAIMER: "Harry Potter" is the property of J.K. Rowling and Warner Bros. This fanfiction was written entirely for fun, not for profit, and no copyright infringement is intended.
TIMELINE: War-time, A/U (Moody did not die, and events are completely different from the time at Malfoy Manor in "Deathly Hallows" and onward)
MAIN CHARACTERS FEATURED (alphabetical order, last name): Hermione Granger, Astoria Greengrass-Malfoy, Rabastan Lestrange, Draco Malfoy
SECONDARY CHARACTERS FEATURED (alphabetical order, last name): Bellatrix Lestrange, Minerva McGonagall, Alastor Moody, Narcissa Malfoy, Severus Snape, Ginny Weasley
SUMMARY: In the midst of the on-going conflict with the Dark Army, the White Queen, Hermione, and the White King, Draco, manoeuvre around each other, both aiming for the same thing – an end to the curses laid upon them by Bellatrix Lestrange. Circling the board are random pieces: Rabastan Lestrange (the White Knight), Narcissa Malfoy (a Bishop of indeterminate colour), Ginny Weasley (the White Rook), and Astoria Malfoy (the Black Queen). Can Hermione figure out how to win the White King's affection and Checkmate Voldemort, the Black King, in time?
RATING: NC-17 (MA)
WARNINGS: Explicit het sex (dub-con and consensual – virginity loss), love quadrangle, explicit profanity, war violence, implied torture, infidelity, implied accidental magic use, misuse of dark spells, unintended pregnancy & miscarriage, main character death, characters a bit OOC for the sake of the plot.
Skewers, Pins, and Forks are all chess tactics that can be played on the fly to counter or attack. Gambits, Defences, and Traps are in-depth chess strategies that require planning everything out perfectly several moves ahead.
In the X-Men comics, Gambit & Rogue are opposites in the comic series: he's an energy creator, she's an energy stealer. Gambit also happens to be desperately in love with Rogue, and she with him, but they can never touch, due to her powers. They are star-crossed lovers in the series as a result, always fighting and pushing each other away, while pulling at each other at the same time. In this fic Gambit = Draco, Rogue = Hermione.
CHECKMATE IN FIVE MOVES (alternatively, "THE AFTERMATH")
Malfoy Manor - April, 1998
"Did you know Mudbloods are the ancestral children of Squibs mating with Muggles?" Bellatrix whispers in my ear, as if imparting a secret. She giggles, insanity tainting her joy, but shouts in my face a moment later, "Your kind is an aberration, bred by defects and the mundane!"
She leans back, and I can barely see her once-beautiful features through my tears.
I want to tell her to go straight to Hell, but my tongue isn't working quite right. It feels swollen. I think I bit down upon it too hard during that last Crucio.
"You're born stealing magic from our world," Voldemort's mad lieutenant continues in a more even tone of voice, pressing the tip of her wand into my cheek, "in a pathetic attempt to claw out a place for yourself where you didn't belong from the start." She taps my forehead three times and snarls at me. "Your kind are all dirty, foul thieves from the moment of your birth until your death. I'll prove it to you."
For a moment, the haze before my eyes clears, and I can see Bellatrix's face. She's wearing a sadistic smile just for me.
I haven't a clue as to what the mad witch means, or what the triumph in her black eyes signifies, until a month later, when she lies dead on the cracked floor of the Great Hall, and Voldemort barely escapes Harry's wrath.
Grimmauld Place – February, 2000
There's a familiar knock on my bedroom door, hard and a bit demanding.
I pull my reading glasses from my nose, blink away the fuzziness, and look up at the antique Victorian clock sitting on the small table at my side as an excuse to stall.
Is it that late already? I've lost track of time again.
Setting aside my book, I make my feet, a bit shaky. I take a moment to attempt to straighten my robe, and to regain control of my trembling limbs and my fast beating heart.
I hate that he knows my weakness, just as I'm sure he despises exposing his to me. We have an arrangement and an understanding, but that doesn't mean I enjoy letting down my defences, especially where he's concerned.
The pounding gets louder, more insistent.
I should let him sit out in the hall until it hurts. He'd deserve no less. I won't, but still, the idea brings me some small, grim amusement.
With a sigh, I raise my wand and wave it over the door, unlocking it - a wordless invite to my guest.
The door swings open and slams against the wall, and he enters, shutting and relocking it behind him with his wand. Without a word, he stalks towards me, already half undressed, and shucks his shirt from his shoulders, tossing it to the ground.
I refuse to just start stripping because he expects it. I won't make this easy for him. I cross my arms and watch him approach, that strange fluttering in my belly that appears every time we do this crawling around inside me like an illness.
His belt hits the wooden floor with a clang, and the sound of his zip coming down is loud in the hush. He doesn't say anything, just stares as me, waiting. His cock is in his hand, and he's stroking it without shame, letting me know that his lust is real and all for me.
There is a darkness in his gaze, and anyone who didn't know him better would assume it meant he was angry. I know his expressions by now, though. He takes a twisted enjoyment from the needle-like sensation that digs under his skin whenever he allows his energy levels to spike too high, for too long. It's one of the reasons why he's almost always waited until the last minute to come to me, hovering on that edge between pleasure and pain, riding the high.
There is sweat upon his upper lip, and dotting his brow as the ache sharpens, carving into him now. I see the black glint in his eye, the pursing of his lips, but he makes no sound. My body trembles, sensing the sweet taste of magic so close… I swallow, thick and heavy, as hunger begins clawing at my insides. The hollowness in my belly makes me an empty, concave vessel, desperate and needy. But I have my pride, and I won't be the first to flinch in this game of chess that Malfoy and I play.
The clock on the side table chimes once to let me know it is half-past. The sound jars us both, and he breaks, moving first. Gripping my arms in a firm hold, he drags me over to the bed, ripping my robe from me. I'm wearing nothing underneath, having expected him. My nipples are hard points, straining for his touch as he focuses on them. He chuckles, and it is a victorious, male sound that rumbles through his chest.
Using his weight, he knocks me back onto the mattress and mounts me, shoving my thighs aside. A quick adjustment and he thrusts, burying deep inside me with a moan of satisfaction. I'm so wet, and my leg muscles are quaking uncontrollably, and I grab hold of him for all I'm worth and fuck him just as wildly as he fucks me. We tear at each other, letting out all our frustrations over our unusual situation.
I want this with him. I want it more than once a month. I want it because there's a type of chemistry between us that's undeniable, despite our contradictory natures.
If only he wanted the same thing...
It's over too quick, and for the first time since we began this bizarre ritual, I don't come. I think it's because the emotional war going on in my head is upsetting me too much to allow my body a release. I do feel Malfoy's seed, hot and slick, inside me as he hisses his satisfaction, though.
I tense, anticipating what's next. His arms tighten around me, preparing us both.
The rush of his discharged magical energy pours through me a moment after his last jerking release, lighting me up like a Christmas tree from the inside-out. I scream and hold onto him for all I'm worth, crying from the pleasure and pain of being filled with magic once more. My greedy cells drink up every drop he gives, absorbing it like a sponge, until I'm once more filled to bursting and Malfoy is back to his normal energy levels.
It will take me three or so more weeks before I use up all of this magic he's gifted me, but only if I'm careful with its use. Three weeks to once again be a witch...
My lover slumps against me, drained for the moment. His panting breath against my throat feels oppressive, like humidity in the summertime, and I turn my head so I can find a cool respite from the surrounding air. My limbs are like jelly, unwilling to respond to my mental commands for them to let him go.
He takes the decision from me a few moments later, pushing off and out of me. His eyes don't meet mine now, as he hastily buttons back up his slacks and re-zips. He gathers his things from the floor and heads for the door as quickly as he can.
There, he pauses, however, just as he does every time. I know what he's going to say next, and I hate the words, because they only reinforce what this is between us: a means to an end.
He slips out the door and is gone, quietly closing it behind him.
Every month, it's the same: he comes through my bedroom like a hurricane, and he leaves my heart just as shredded and devastated when he passes on.
I am painfully aware of the fact that he has never kissed me on the mouth, too.
Hogwarts Castle – 2 May, 1998
"She'll be going with me," Snape explains to Moody, indicating the shivering witch at his side. She's heavily cowled so I can't see her face, but strands of messy, blonde hair appear at the edges of her hood, and I can see her bared, pale arms peeking out from under her cloak. Her skin is smudged with dirt and ash. I also note that her dress is torn at the hem, but she doesn't use her wand to fix it. I wonder why not.
"Are you mad? What good is a young girl going to be in that viper's den?" Moody argues with his colleague. "They'll eat 'er alive!"
The two get into a heated debate over the matter, with Lupin and McGonagall trying to referee. I wait at the edge of the group, having walked all the way up the stairs to the Headmaster's tower, wanting to ask if anyone has seen Harry or Ron. I've just come in from helping to dig out a trapped Centaur in the decimated Viaduct Courtyard, and have no idea where my two best friends are.
"Oh, Miss Granger," Minerva calls, drawing the conversation to an abrupt halt as she makes it clear I'm hovering, listening. "What can we do for you, dear?"
"I wondered if you've seen Harry or... or Ron about? I seem to have lost track of them."
"We will discuss this later," Severus curtly informs the others, ignoring my presence entirely. "Come," he instructs the covered witch at his side.
They move past me towards the open door and the stairwell. The witch accidentally brushes against me in a somewhat rough manner, but doesn't apologise. I assume it's because, hanging as she is with Snape, she's in Slytherin, and everyone knows I'm Gryffindor, and whether the war is over or not, House prejudice remains the same. Besides, the Slytherins were treated rather badly when they were banished to the dungeon before the fighting, so it's natural to expect they'd harbour some resentment.
I turn my attention to more important things... like finding Ron and Harry.
When my best friends and I do finally hook-up, I try and fail to use magic to heal Ron's bloodied nose.
It takes me several days of failed spell-casting to admit the truth: I'm empty, as ordinary as my parents.
I'm a Squib.
Grimmauld Place – February, 2000 (2)
I wince as I sit down in the chair at the kitchen table, and Ginny tosses me a sympathetic look.
"You okay?" she asks knowing that the morning afters with Malfoy are the same as well. I'm typically swollen and sensitive from the sex, and I ache from the added heaviness in my bones. They become like Adamantium the first few days after Draco's magical excess is absorbed by my body, and I'm slow moving and have to take pain potions to counteract the effects.
I nod, weary. "Fine," I croak. My throat is raw from screaming the night before – not just during the sex, but throughout the night, as the magic digs its way into my pores, sinking deep into every cell. It is pure pain and rapture at the same time.
I wonder if what I endure after Malfoy shunts his excess magical energy to me qualifies as a form of cryptobiosis. I know that for the first day after the transfer, I feel like one of those Sea-Monkeys sold in Muggle science kits, spontaneously birthed and filled up with life. Every joint and muscle hurts, my head pounds, I'm sensitive to noise and light. It's awful, and it's beautiful at the same time.
No one is sharing the kitchen with us for the moment, so Ginny speaks up. She's bold where she shouldn't be, and fearless in the face of danger, and although that makes her a tough opponent on the battlefield, it doesn't make her a very tactful person. I both love and hate her for it at the same time.
"I'll say it for the gazillionth time: you don't have to be only with Malfoy," she points out. "Rabastan's here, too."
I sigh. "I know."
"He's made it clear he's interested-"
"I know, Gin," I say again.
My best girl friend is quiet for a moment as I rub my temples, trying to forcibly beat the migraine that's slowly creeping up on me. It'll be a losing battle, but I fight it anyway, knowing I can't take any more pain potions for the time being. I'm already dangerously close to addiction.
"Malfoy's married, Hermione. If the war ends in our favour, as it looks like it might soon, and we're all still alive, he'll choose his wife over you. You'll get your heart broken."
Tears waver before my eyes. I sigh again. "I know."
There is an uncomfortable silence that lasts a bit before Ginny changes the topic. "Harry's close to finding Ravenclaw's Horcrux, and he thinks Nagini might be the sixth one."
I wipe the tears from my eyes, frowning. "I didn't know Horcruxes could be inside living creatures. I always assumed they were only found in inanimate objects. All of Voldemort's other hiding places were things – the locket, the ring, the cup."
"The diary," Ginny reminds me.
We spend a while talking on the subject, and then move on to other Order business and gossip. We avoid discussing my relationship with Draco again.
TO BE CONTINUED...
Extra notes about the X-MEN parts of the story (so you'll really understand how the stories blend if you're reading this fic primarily as a "Harry Potter" fan with little-to-no knowledge about the X-Men series):
In Marvel comics, Rogue is a Mutant - a person born with 'super DNA' – the next evolution of humanity. She is also a member of the benevolent team of Mutants known as the X-Men. Her powers are tactile: she touches another living being's skin and absorbs their life-force, memories, and mutant abilities. She once grabbed and held onto fellow Mutant, Ms. Marvel. Doing so caused Rogue to permanently absorb the other woman's powers and memories, leaving Ms. Marvel a tabula rasa – a completely blank slate.
Gambit is another Mutant in the X-Universe, who was once a thief & a member of an evil organization bent on world-domination, but he eventually turned to the X-Men to fight against his former colleagues. He is an energy charger; he imparts kinetic energy to items, and throws them at objects or people, and they explode on contact. He's handsome, charming (when he puts his mind to it), and a womanizer. Gambit's first love was a woman named Bella Donna - a blonde, blue-eyed bombshell who also happens to be disgustingly rich, a skilled assassin, and a nasty foe. Gambit married Bella Donna, but was forced to separate from her later (they are not legally divorced, but they definitely are not together anymore in the series).
In the comic series, there is a group of Mutants who banded together to form The Hellfire Club (which Gambit and Rogue both were wrapped up in at various times throughout their history). Their members are organised in a hierarchy of power, and refer to each other as pieces on a chessboard (The White Queen, The Black King, etc.), rather than by their real names.
In the 1990's, there was a brief story arc in the comics where a Mutant named Joseph appears on the scene & joins the X-Men. He is cloned from one of the bad guys in the series (Magneto, for you comic fans), but his DNA is changed so he appears as a much younger version than his originator (appearing in his 30's, rather than in his 60's). Joseph is different in personality, too, turning to good, rather than evil. He falls in love with Rogue, and she is drawn to him. This creates a love-triangle between her, Joseph, and (a very jealous) Gambit. Ultimately, Rogue chooses Gambit, and later, Joseph dies in some heroic manner.
Adamantium is a made-up metal in the Marvel Universe that is the strongest and most durable metal in the world.
You'll need to understand all that for this fic, as Luna = Ms. Marvel, Astoria = Bella Donna, and Rabastan = Joseph.