You Fight, You Make Up
March 27th, 2005 at 8:31 AM
Marcus shifted slightly, not trying to resist the arms that held him down, but testing his limits. The Dark Lord was pleased with him, was pleased with the murder he had performed in the Dark Lord's name. Death to prove his worth.
The man he had killed had been a no one. And hapless Muggle who had been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Marcus didn't bother feeling bad about the senseless death. About the hours the man had screamed.
It had earned him this. This reward
The hands holding him down were just a precaution. Not everyone reacted well to the pain, to the leash. He was determined that he would not fight, though. No flinching away. No screaming.
The Dark Lord appeared over him, red eyes slitted in pleasure, mouth in a gruesome semblance of a smile. His eyes gleamed as he leaned down and pressed the tip of his wand to Marcus's forearm.
Marcus woke with a start, phantom pain burning his arm and imaginary hands holding his still for the bastard he had pledged himself to. His teeth ached from remembered pain from the event. He had proved himself that day in more ways than one. With murder, with deceit, and with silence.
Murder, with the man he had killed. His first, but not his last.
Deceit, as he bowed in submission to the Dark Lord. His loathing carefully hidden in a locked box in the back of his mind.
Silence, as he accepted the Mark without making so much as a whimper.
He shifted, breaking the hold of the imaginary hands. And discovering the real bonds that held him down. The dream's remnants had kept him from noticing the body that was draped over him, the hair that was tickling his nose.
He let out a little growl of frustration. He'd left Greengrass asleep on the couch. He'd warned her to stay there. And yet, here she was, in his bed. He'd never get the smell of her out of the mattress.
But he did not push her away.
She'd told herself that she had gotten cold, but that was not exactly true. She knew Marcus was now awake, the last bits of his dream chased away. She stayed as still as possible, waiting to see if he shoved her away. She'd been lying like this for at least an hour, just listening to him sleep.
"My bed is not the couch," he pointed out once he was awake enough to realize that her breathing was too fast for someone who was asleep. He lifted an arm to swipe the hair away from his nose and somehow found his hand wrapped in the tresses.
"The couch was cold. You're very warm. I like here. You also smell like you, and that's nice. I like it."
She was trying not to wiggle too much, especially when she noticed her borrowed sweats were not on her body as they should be anymore.
"Who else would I smell like," he wondered before shaking the question away. His stomach growled. He normally ate when he got off work in the mornings, but Greengrass's craziness had disrupted his schedule.
"I need food." He prodded her off his chest and sat up. "You hungry?"
"Mmm," she responded, nodding. "I like your scent, and I have issues. The sweat pants have become lost somewhere in the bedding."
He froze. The idea of her, half naked, in his bed.
He went from total stillness to motion in no time flat, and was out of the room before he had even realized it, the bedroom door slamming behind him.
"Bloody buggering fuck," he snarled as he stomped the few feet to the kitchen and started tea and toast.
Astoria located the sweats and quickly as possible and pulled them on while running out of the bedroom. She held them up with one hand.
"My vagina doesn't have cooties. I'm sure you've had plenty of naked females in your bed."
Astoria walked up behind him. The urge to nuzzle him was quite strong.
"I don't have females in my bed at all," he snapped. Beyond his mother, she was the only woman who had ever been in his flat. If he'd had his way, neither one of them would have ever seen the inside of the building, much less his space.
He didn't like people in his territory. His flat had been one of the few places where he could be himself.
"Good. And I don't expect you to change."
She sat in one of the chairs and propped her chin on her hand. She grinned as she partook in her favorite hobby - Marcus watching.
He tossed a couple of pieces of toast on a plate and set it in front of Greengrass before taking the whistling kettle off the stove and started the tea steeping.
"I'm not going to change," he declared, though he had a feeling it was a useless statement.
"I don't expect you to. I like you as you are. I don't suspect I'd like you so well if you weren't you."
She snatched a piece and toast and started crunching on it happily, getting crumbs all over. Her mother would be horrified.
He growled in irritation and turned back to the stove. Toast was a good start to breakfast, but not what he really wanted to eat.
"You shouldn't like me at all."
"I think that's one of your major draws." Astoria chewed a moment. "You also have an intensity to you the likes of which I have not seen in many people. It's very attractive."
"You're drawn to me because I don't want you to be drawn to me," he asked in complete confusion as he pulled together the ingredients for some pancakes. He wasn't a great cook, but could keep himself from starving.
"You make no sense."
"Not the first time I have heard that. Yes, I'm drawn to you because you don't want me to be, but I stay because of you. You're not normal, but that's all right. Neither am I. I think we could have sex. I think it would be all right so long as we don't get carried away and start humping like bunnies all over every stick of furniture in the apartment."
"You want to have sex," he asked, turning from the stove and studying her. "You've spent the last few months, fuck, we've both
spent the last few months counting out the reasons why it's a bad idea. And now, out of the blue, you just want to have sex?
"Bloody insane, you are!"
Astoria gave him an incredulous look. Where had he been last night? Of course she was insane.
"It's really not out of the blue, so you know. I've been wanting to have sex with you since I figured out what it was."
"Well, fine, then," he snapped, stalking towards her. He quickly shucked the sweats he'd slept in, leaving him stark naked in his kitchen. "We'll have bloody sex. And then you can swan off to wherever the bloody fuck you stay when you're not annoying me."
His body responded to the idea, even as his mind seethed. In his brain, she'd become just like all the other bitches who had wanted him for a night of rough sex and nothing else.
"Oh, hell no," she snapped. "Not when you're not even seeing me. I could be anyone right now. Why don't you just go masturbate in the shower again."
She got up and stalked towards the one window in the living room area.
He stomped over to her and spun her around to face him. "You don't get to decide that the risks are worth it," he snapped. "Not when the consequences would effect us both."
"Well someone has to decide. You won't. I could dance a happy jig around you naked as naked ever was, and you'd remain in control. I want you to see me as I see you. Maybe I ask too much. I want you. I always want you. I know what can happen. I don't want that. I know I can't have you without that, but I am beginning to think I can't stand not having you."
She touched his bare shoulder with her fingertips.
"I am at my most clear when you're right like this."
He growled low in his throat. "In control
? If you had any
bloody idea how thin my control is around you, you wouldn't joke about it. Every time you fucking twitch your bloody hips, I want to have you up against the nearest flat surface while I slam balls deep into you. Control
." The word was a low snarl.
Astoria blinked at him. "But you don't want me, so perhaps I should back away slowly now. I'll not force you into something."
She inched away, willing herself not to stare, but he was so naked.
want you," he agreed. "You're dangerous to me in ways I don't think that you can even begin to understand. Merlin's balls
, woman, you fucking know
what I do! Have you ever even considered what would happen if one of the Death Eaters thought you were important to me? Or some of the Aurors that are supposedly on the right side of the bloody law?"
"Well according to you, you don't care what happens to me, so why should I? It doesn't matter. Besides, if they take me away, perhaps I will go mad, then I won't know what they do. I don't care what you do. I care about you. If they try to come at you through me, they'll be sorry."
He growled and stalked closer, crowding her until her back was against the wall. "I don't know how to care about anyone but myself," he said as he loomed over her.
"I think you do all right with me. I don't require much."
She really wanted to touch him, but she had a feeling if she did that he'd pin her to the wall then try to fuck her through it, so Astoria just stared up at him.
"Not much at all. Just everything that you
want." He pushed away from the wall before he did something he would regret. Be that kill her or kiss her. He didn't know which way he would fall.
"So you'll lie and say you don't want me as well. I've tried not to want you. It doesn't work. I can't even go a few days without seeing you anymore. I wish I could just curl up inside of you and let you carry me around."
Marcus stopped and put his palms flat against the table before letting his shoulders slump and his head hang. "And what Greengrass wants, Greengrass gets, is that it?" The words were said softly. "I give in or am responsible for you losing yourself. Have you ever thought that maybe I don't want that responsibility? That maybe I was perfectly happy the way I was?"
"Were you really? Because I don't think you've ever been happy. I think you don't know what it is to be happy. I also think I'd like to gut everyone who's ever kept the feeling from you. You've been existing. That's not happy or content. That's not even really living. Haven't you ever done something scary? And I don't mean killing or being a brute. Those things do not frighten you. Caring about you frightens me. Because I know you have the ability to destroy me."
He swiped his hands over the table, scattering the breakfast things, breaking the plate that still had toast crumbs on it. He'd been happy
existing. Why did she have to fucking change things.
Astoria glared at him. "I hope you don't expect me to clean that up. I lost my wand when I had my episode the other night."
"Yes, because I can't do anything without you, can I?" He snatched his own wand from his discarded sweats and cast an easy cleaning spell. The broken plate could be repaired later.
Once the spell was done, he tossed the wand on the table and went into the bedroom, slamming the door behind him before flopping down on the bed.
Astoria sighed and used his wand to mend the plate before padding softly to the bedroom. She did not enter, but traced her finger on the door as she pressed her ear to it, trying to hear him.
"You could send me home if you like. Or take me there. I'll figure out how to get my wand back another time."
"Like that would help," he muttered. He threw his arm up to cover his eyes and sighed. "Because I want to single-handedly cause the most powerful Seer in generations to lose her mind," he said, loud enough for her to hear him.
He felt a little silly for hiding in his room. But it was the best option at the moment.
"I'm going to lose my mind eventually anyhow. I think I'd like to spend what sanity I have left with you. Odd as it seems, you make me feel alive again."
"Because that helps." He didn't want to think about her losing her mind. About how she had been the night before. He hadn't liked it. Hadn't liked seeing her like that. And if she was his... He'd kill to prevent that from ever happening again. Which scared him.
"You'd rather me lie? Say I never want to see you again? Say I can walk away? I could say it. It would be lies."
She shoved off of the door and made her way back to the couch before flopping onto it and folding her arms across her chest.
Marcus stayed still on the bed, his head full of everything that had happened. His Mark had burned. Greengrass had lost it and needed him. He didn't want her to need him. He didn't want to want
her the way he did. He felt pulled in a hundred directions and didn't know which way to go.
After a few minutes, he rose and put on a new pair of sweats, then opened the door and leaned against the frame. He didn't speak, just watched Greengrass, his mind still whirling.
Astoria just glared at him, arms still folded across her chest. She had no idea where to go from here. They seemed to be at an impasse.
Suddenly she got up and walked to the door.
"I'm going home," she said before he could ask. "Yes, I know I have no wand or shoes, but I'll figure it out."
He growled in annoyance.
"Wait a bloody minute and I'll take you. At least then you won't cut your feet up."
"Going to carry me? That involves the forbidden touching, you realize."
He didn't comment as he stomped over to his chest of drawers and pulled out a shirt. It had short sleeves and he tossed it away with a huff before digging for one that would cover his arms. Then he stuck his feet in a beat up pair of athletic shoes.
"Do you have a back up wand, or do you need to go to Ollivander's?"
"I have a back up, but it's in Stygion, so I suppose you will get to see me in my natural environs after all."
"I don't know how to get there," he said, handing her his wand and offering his arm. She'd have to do the actual apparation.
Astoria stared at him, mouth opening slightly.
Now she knew she could never let him go. He was trusting her. Sure, he'd handed her his wand before, but this was different. He was trusting her with his person.
Her hand shook a bit as she took the wand. She hooked an arm through his and counted off so that he'd be ready before landing them at the edge of the village. It was smaller than Hogsmeade and mostly composed of cottages. Astoria started walking towards hers. She could see curtains rustling and knew she would get visitors asking questions later.
He followed silently behind her, shifting his shoulders as if to dispel the eyes he could feel following them. He knew that he could take his wand back and leave her now. But he didn't.
"Are your neighbors always this nosey?"
"Yes. They don't like strangers. That's why I am making it very obvious you are with me, so if you ever need a place to go, you can come here."
She stepped up to her small cottage and pushed open the door. It was much as she had left it - mismatched and cluttered. She had a lot of things.
Marcus followed her into the cottage and closed the door behind him. Being cut off from the stares made his shoulders relax, but he wondered how many of the residents were now standing in their yards, gazes trained on Greengrass's cottage, counting the minutes that the two of them were alone.
It was a reminder why he preferred living in Knockturn. No one noticed anything there. Hell, he'd killed a man in the Alley and no one had interfered.
He leaned against the door, blocking anyone from coming in, and watched as Greengrass flittered around.
She dug in her old Hogwarts trunk. "Aha! Here we are."
She twirled the wand in her fingers. She could go to Ollivander's tomorrow and get a new one.
"You could stay if you like or not. If it's not, let me walk you back. You can't apparate in or out of the village directly."
He crossed his arms over his chest and shifted against the door.
"Why do you want to do this? Really?"
Astoria's brow knitted together. She was confused, which was an odd feeling, as she was never confused.
"Well, this right here is a start. You just confused me. Do you know how rare that is? I love unexpected things. You are very unexpected. Now, don't take offense, but you're likable. Not in a normal way. I like watching you tear things apart. I know it's not a normal reaction, but I'm not normal. I want this because I shouldn't want it. It's going to destroy me, and I don't even care. You excite me and you make me want to be out in the world again. Not in direct sunlight, you understand, because I freckle, but the shadows are nice when you're in view."
"I can't do it. Not like you want. I can't do it half-arsed. Do you understand that? That's why I don't want this. Because it will be all or nothing."
"I understand," she said, feeling very melancholy.
She might understand, but it did not mean she had to like it.
"I'll try to stay hidden when I watch you."
"If that's what you want." He was surprised that that was her answer. He'd expected her to choose the "all" option. But perhaps this was better. This way she couldn't be used against him.
Only, Marcus was afraid that she was already too far under his skin for it to be true. If one of his enemies found her, threatened her...
"No," she snapped. "That is most certainly not what I want, but this isn't just about me, as much as you like to think I think it is. I want you to consume me, but you obviously have other ideas."
Marcus growled and pushed away from the door, stalking forward until he loomed over her. She didn't back away, but held her ground.
"That's the problem. I don't
! You're in my head, all the time. And I can't get you out. If I could, it would be different. I could fuck you into the wall and walk the fuck away. But I can't
! If I touch you, if I taste you, then you'll never bloody well get rid of me!"
He snarled and spun away, pacing in the small amount of space the cottage afforded.
"And I want that so much that it aches," he ground out.
"Well, perhaps I don't want to be rid of you! What's so terrible about you that I'd just have enough one day? I want you so much it makes me crazy. Literally crazy. Though this last bout was not your fault at all."
He spun and growled at her. "Because it puts you
in danger. It puts me
in danger. And you're the bloody one that said you just wanted a fucking taste. To fucking pull back when it got to be too much. And I can't do that! All or nothing, Greengrass."
"Then all, because nothing is unacceptable."
And she could not believe she had just said that.
He loomed over her again, not touching. "Don't say that unless you're sure, Greengrass. Because I will not go back."
Astoria considered. It was a bit frightening that she had never been more certain of anything in her entire life.
"I'm sure about you," she whispered, but firmly.
She was. She was sure he'd hurt her and she'd regret this decision at least a dozen or more times, but she was also sure she would never feel more alive.
He growled again and reached out, capturing her arms and dragging her towards him. Once she was pressed against his body, he wrapped one hand in her hair and the other arm around her hips, using his grip to lift her up before attacking her lips.
The bruises would likely be many, and she hardly cared.
What she did care about was kissing him back. Her hands fisted up wads of his shirt. Astoria could not get close enough to him.
Then her stupid gift had to go acting haywire.
Astoria shoved back as much as she could and whimpered. This was going to be a bad ride. The first barrage of images had her convulsing and screaming.
Marcus did not realize what had happened at first. He first thought was that she had changed her mind. And that he'd have to kill her for doing so. But the blank look in her eyes told him otherwise.
He carried her over to the couch and sat down with her in his lap, just holding her until the fit eased.
"I'm sorry. I'm s-s-sorry."
Astoria was shaking. She could not stop. It was not Voldemort. It was a man with a clouded face. She could make out no features, but he had a trio of demons making the marks burn. She did not know why. She had also seen herself fighting with Marcus. Not against him, but by his side. Both of them had their wands drawn. She could not see what they were fighting.
It was something of him she had never seen before.
Astoria wondered if by embracing her vision of her future she had somehow altered it.
"What did you see," he asked. If it was important, he needed to pass it along.
"You knew this, but it isn't Voldemort. It's a man using demons, and you and I fight someone together. I think my cheek was cut and bleeding. I hope it doesn't scar. I'd never seen that before. I had your back, and you were letting me."
He grunted, torn between surprise and understanding. It made sense that he would trust her at his back. Not if this thing between them went the way he thought it was going to.