Song: Incubus - When It Comes (Writer's Choice for hp_100songs)
Rating: light R?
Pairing: Draco Malfoy/Morag MacDougal (Blood/Fire)
Summary: When first Draco and then Morag are betrayed and broken by the Dark Lord, they pick up each other's pieces.
Warnings: twists, flangstiness, implied het!sex, violent Legilimency, insanity
Disclaimer: I own nothing, I am making no money, I do not intend any copyright infringement
Author's note: Thank you to dark_adrenalynn for the help with Morag! You know I love you, darling twin :D
They're letting it out again
When it comes, it comes abrupt
How it feels, it feels like trading brains with an imbecile (for real)
Yes, I feel emphatic about not being static
And not buying philosophies that are sold to me, no, at a steal
Just when you thought, it was safe to think
In comes mental piracy, and no
What I'm looking for cannot be sold to me
I wish they all would stop trying
Cause what I want, and what I need, is and will always be free
Incubus - When It Comes
It all started in a small Muggle cafe. Specifically, in the bathroom, where the tile might as well have been inscribed with the words "Blood and Fire Were Here" for all the time they spent pressed up against it.
It ended in a castle.
Draco Malfoy, alias "Fire", did not particularly like public bathrooms, unless they were in a really fancy, upscale restaurant, kept stocked and clean. Not like this one, with toilet paper on the floor and grime on the walls, whose source he did not want to even think about.
Morag MacDougal, also known as "Blood", could not have cared less, so long as the shag was good. And she made sure that Draco wasn't thinking about the gunk that was getting all over his perfect, pale skin, nor the goo that was mucking up his gorgeous blond hair. By the time they got into one of the stalls, neither of them were thinking about much of anything at all.
They went from old classmates, acquaintances who never so much as said hello as they passed in the hallways, prefect and troublemaker to lovers in less than half an hour. When they exited the lavatory, together, flushed and grinning, the Muggles hid behind their late-night cups of coffee and pretended that they hadn't heard a thing.
But when you put two screamers in an enclosed space with a distinct lack of silencing charms, anyone nearby would have to be deaf not to hear their cries.
Morag wasn't sure if the Malfoy dungeons had Silencing Spells, but the stone seemed to reflect every little sound back into the room, preventing it from escaping even as it amplified it. And it was really very odd that she was thinking about sound leaking out, when the prisoner hanging from the wall hadn't made a sound in at least twenty minutes.
"He's gone, My Lord," Lucius said proudly, raising one hand to indicate his handiwork. "His mind will eat itself from within in the next six to twelve hours, but if there is anything else from him that My Lord requires..."
Voldemort's eyes flicked from his esteemed servant, to the prisoner, and over to Morag. She had to fight back the disgust, the inexplicable hatred for Lucius, that he would do something so horrible to his own son, but she managed to keep it from showing in her eyes.
He considered her for a moment, and then shook his head. "You," he said, still looking at Morag. "Dispose of the body, properly this time, and be grateful that you are not in his shoes."
It was only when they were gone that Morag allowed the anger to turn into overwhelming, desperate grief.
Meeting with Blood was Draco's favourite assignment. It was, technically, two assignments-- give her the information for a hit, and convince her to take the Mark. But she always managed to make him forget that he was supposed to be manipulating her, drawing her in, because all he really wanted was for her to manipulate him, in a completely different way.
It wasn't as if he was the poster boy for loyalty, anyway.
"Aren't you getting horribly tired of the Ministry?" he asked once, leaning forward intently but keeping his voice casual, innocent.
Morag's brown eyes flicked to Draco's silver ones at the question, a small amused smile on her face.
"The company is rather dreadful," she admitted with a small grimace, tapping her sharpened black nails on the table in front of her. "And the pay pathetic, comparatively, but they're too stupid to see anything other than what they want to see."
Draco nodded and dove headfirst into the questioning, even though he knew she'd see right through him. "How do you feel about jobs that pay in something other than money?"
Morag smirked and shifted her weight, resting her chin on her hand as she studied him. "What do you get out of it, Fire?" she asked pointedly, raising an eyebrow. "Killing and violence is the important thing, not the reasoning--hence my freelance work. It has very little to do with money, although it is a nice bonus."
"Power," Draco said immediately, lips twitching up into a grin, because that was exactly what he'd wanted to hear. "More fun assignments-- perhaps even more personal. I happen to know there's at least one job that you'll only be able to get if you take a Mark, and I would hate for you to have to pass it up."
He leaned back in his chair, smirking at her. "And besides, you'll get to see me more often."
"Blood," Draco murmured, though whether he could tell that she was carrying him or in the middle of a Legilimency-induced hallucination, Morag couldn't be sure. "Blood."
Morag had to wet her dry, cracked lips with her tongue before she could answer, and even then it was nearly impossible to get the words out past the nagging, annoying emotions.
"Fire," she responded, carefully carrying him into the keep of her castle and then up to her room, gently lying him down on her bed. She studied him for a moment, shocked that despite being a little paler, if that was even possible, he looked unharmed, though she knew he was anything but. She carefully moved over to her bathroom and wet a cloth to put on his forehead, her mind trying to come up with what else she could possibly do to nurse him back to the person he was.
Draco's eyes flew open and his hand shot up from the bed, grabbing her wrist before she could pull her hand away from his forehead. "Blood," he said clearly, eyes silver and lucid and staring straight at her. "Potion."
Morag cursed in shock, her eyes locking on his. "Potion?" she repeated, trying to figure out what he could possibly mean, her mind quickly trying to inventory all the potions she had ever learned, even ever heard of, because if there was a potion that could fix this she didn't care what it cost. "What potion?" she pressed softly, desperation leaking into her voice.
Draco nodded slightly, even as his grip loosened and his eyes went slightly unfocused. "Wit-Sharpening," he said breathlessly, fighting with his own mind to get the words out in the correct order. "Memory. Help."
"Yes." Morag said in relief, squeezing his hand and leaning over to kiss him softly. "Yes, I'll help. I have to leave you, but nothing will harm you here."
She had to fight to slow down her words, her mind racing as her fingers itched to move into action. She carefully pried his hand from her wrist and hurried to the kitchen where she kept most of her potions ingredients, trying to keep her hands from shaking as she grabbed the jar of armadillo bile. She could not, would not be shaky right now. Everything had to be perfect, because somewhere in her mind, or perhaps her heart, she knew that this was her fault.
"McCrankyKitty," Draco told the ceiling, and then went entirely silent, eyes wide with horror.
"It looks beautiful on you," Draco panted, pulling away from Morag's warmth and resting against the opposite wall of the tiny toilet stall in order to catch his breath. "Red and white and black...it suits you."
"Alway' were my best colours." Morag said softly in reply, her own voice more hoarse and accented than usual, brown eyes glinting as she traced the black mark on her arm gingerly with a fingernail. "An' th' darkness alway' has."
She pulled her eyes away from the Mark to his face, well aware that hers was flushed. "But thank you."
Draco watched her for a moment, smiling happily. Then the smile turned into a smirk, and he reached for his clothes. "Ready for your other prize?"
"An' wha' woul' tha' be?" Morag asked as she quickly and efficiently put herself into some semblance of order, clearing her throat in an attempt to stifle her accent again, her curiosity obvious, though he would not need any signals to know that.
"Your first job as a true soldier of darkness," Draco intoned, gesturing dramatically. "And probably the last time I'll be the messenger, but that's beside the point. You get to take out your favourite professor."
The word favourite was dripping with sarcasm, and Draco's eyes glinted as he watched her, letting her know that he meant exactly the opposite. "Three guesses."
Morag's face exploded into a large grin and it was all she could do not to clap her hands in glee. "McCrankykitty?" she asked excitedly. "I get to kill McCrankykitty?"
"You'll have to sit through at least one more meeting with her, I'm afraid," Draco replied, grinning back. "But yes. Come on, they're waiting for us at Grimmauld Place."
After Morag took the Mark, there were no more trips to the cafe. As he had predicted, Draco was no longer the messenger-- she took her orders from the Dark Lord himself, and he had other plans for the young Malfoy.
Voldemort's orders were always brief, as if he simply didn't have the time for more words. A name, a brief description, and perhaps a small amount of information was all she ever got, but it was always enough. Morag wasn't willing to let it be less than enough.
"Malloy," he said one day, "Charlie Malloy. New Auror, brown hair, will be performing a raid on Bourgin and Burkes on Thursday afternoon. See to it that he never lays eyes on my packages."
Morag nodded, because that was all that was expected of her, and left the room.
Draco was waiting for her outside. He'd just gotten back from his own assignment, adrenaline still running on high, and it had been too long since he'd seen her.
"Hello, Blood," he greeted her, stepping out of the shadow of the hallway. "Anything fun this time? Or are you not allowed to tell me?"
"Hello, Fire." Morag replied, her face remaining impassive, but eyes telling her amusement. "He didn't say it was confidential. New Auror that's going to try and get in the way, raiding Borgin's--a Charlie Malloy. You look like you've been having fun." She smirked at him softly. "Tired?"
Draco's face closed over, and he stared at her for a moment, as if trying to read her mind. "Yes, actually," he said finally. "I think I'll be getting up to my room."
He turned on his heel and left abruptly, leaving Morag wondering if she had said something wrong.
Draco was sitting on the kitchen counter, huddling beneath his blankets, and staring out the window. A cup of tea sat forgotten in his hand, liquid hovering at the edge of the porcelain and threatening to spill over with even the slightest movement. It was there that Morag found him, after searching frantically all over the keep.
It wasn't the first time she'd come home from a job to find her bed cold and empty, as if no-one had been there for hours, and he was in a different place each time. It always looked like he had frozen right in the middle of something, sometimes with his mouth open as if to speak, sometimes curled up in a corner. She supposed it was good that he was up and around, out of bed, but it still terrified her.
"Fire?" she queried softly, moving towards him slowly, as one might approach a wild animal. "Fire?"
She slowly reached for the precarious teacup, her fingertips brushing against hand as she did so, trying to remember if she had brewed anymore wit-sharpening potions ahead of time.
"I let him in," Draco whispered, letting go of the teacup too soon and forcing her to make a grab for it. "I let him in, Blood."
Morag caught the cup easily, though they and the floor were both splattered with tea, but she paid the liquid no heed. Her work clothes had seen things far worse and far more permanent than tea.
"Let who in, Fire?" She asked, calmed only slightly by the fact that he knew her and seemed somewhat lucid. "Who are you talking about?"
Draco closed his mouth and swallowed, but his eyes stayed fixed on the view outside. "Father," he said quietly, voice barely audible even in the stillness of the early afternoon. "I had to, Blood, he would have killed me. I'm sorry."
Morag's eyes were darting around, sincerely doubting that he meant today, but one could never be to careful when you led a life like theirs. She had a fairly good idea of what he was referring to, and for a moment, her voice caught in her throat.
"It's all right, Fire," she said in a tone that was trying so hard to be comforting that it came out sounding desperate. "It doesn't matter, your life is more important."
She didn't mention that she had to fight the urge to tear Lucius Malfoy to shreds every time she saw him.
"No," Draco said firmly, turning to look at her for the first time. "No, you don't understand. He knows, he knows about Charlie. You have to be careful."
"Every time," Draco grumbled, as he stalked down the steps of Grimmauld Place, "Without fail, those meetings always give me a headache. And not from Moody trying to read my mind, either. I can't stand them, any of them."
Morag nodded in frustrated agreement, blowing a lock of hair out of her eyes. "It would be absolutely horrible if I threw something hard and preferably painful at them, wouldn't it? We both know they hate me already. Sometimes, honestly..."
She shook her head viciously, biting down on the urge to cross her arms in front of her chest and stomp her foot like a child.
"They hate both of us," Draco said reassuringly, though he was frowning. "Sometimes it just doesn't seem worth it. Sometimes I wonder if it wouldn't be better to die rather than have to live with them, if they win. They'll be horrible and smug about it, and I'll probably get put in Azkaban anyway, only for attempting to kill them all instead of for being a Death Eater."
"I call dibs on Nymphadora." Morag said darkly. "And yes, I know what you mean. Makes me glad for the machinations and manipulations among the Death Eaters--you know exactly why they do everything they do, you don't have to try and sort out their motives and deal with countless good intentions."
"Mmhm," Draco agreed, his face shuttering closed. "Speaking of which, don't you have an assignment this afternoon?"
"Yeah." Morag said, stretching gracefully. "Want to meet after? We could always go back to the old cafe and desecrate the bathroom again for old times sake." She smirked at him, because he knew and understood what a kill did to her, especially when it was quick and the adrenaline barely got the chance to start pumping.
"Sure, why not?" Draco asked, voice falsely light. "I might come down and find you in Knockturn Alley, but if I don't get a chance I'll just meet you at our old table."
It was almost too easy to spot her mark, the way he was walking confidently down the alley, brown hair glinting gold and plain Muggle clothes standing out against the dark robes of the people surrounding him. Stupidity and overconfidence were two of Morag's favourite traits to exploit, but despite all appearances, he was actually rather good at staying in places that made it hard for her to get a good shot.
He had just brushed past a large, obviously pregnant woman carrying a new owl, and then he was gone, the door of Borgin and Burkes swinging shut behind him.
Morag would have growled in annoyance if the thrill of the hunt didn't leave room for such instances of sly marks. She allowed the adrenaline to pump in her veins as she quickly jumped down from her perch, her red hair flying behind her as the less confident denizens of the alley shifted their paths to give her plenty of room. She entered the familiar store easily, not bothering to look for the exits, easily seeing her mark, and waiting, as always, for a kill shot, but when she opened her mouth to speak, all that came out was a sharp gasp.
"Hello," Draco said calmly, shaking his hair back from his face as it changed from brown into blond, watching her with silver eyes that seemed bottomless and yet somehow devoid of emotion. "I don't believe we've met. I'm Charlie Malloy, and you are...?"
Morag couldn't help the string of Gaelic expletives that came from her lips as she stared at him, her mind racing a million miles an hour. Her hand trembled annoyingly around her wand and she ignored the question, trying to read him and failing.
"What is this?" she asked softly--it was meant to be a hiss, but she couldn't manage it. "Why didn't you tell me?"
"I'm here to pick up a package that doesn't exist," Draco told her evenly, face unreadable even as a glimmer of emotion stirred in his eyes. "He's been having me watched for almost a month now, and I'm supposed to die today. I suppose it's too much to hope that you like me enough to let me escape?"
Morag swallowed even as she felt her heart stop in her chest. Her voice, when she spoke, was ragged with the strain of the emotions being forced on it, emotions she was trying her hardest to beat back as she schooled her face into an impassive mask, as false as the white Death Eater one that they had both worn. "My Fire, or this Charlie character?"
The possessiveness nearly broke Draco, then, and it was almost more than he could handle to keep it from showing on his face. He didn't want to use her obvious discomfort against her, but it was a matter of life or death, and it comforted him that he wasn't dead yet.
"Your Fire, of course," he said quietly, the unspoken plea ringing in the air between them. Morag's face crumbled and she bit fully through her lip, really terrified.
"Damn you," she snarled angrily, her mind vindictively reminding her that he always could make her tremble and shake, just never like this before. "Damn you."
She smashed the nearest display case with her fist, not even wincing as the glass cut into her skin. "You've broken me. I can't. Go, run, escape to wherever you can." She closed her eyes to force back the tears that threatened to overflow. "You've never stood me up before, so I suppose I can forgive you this once."
"Thank you," Draco whispered, though the words seemed oddly out of place. He grabbed her bloody hand and kissed it, ignoring the way his lips turned bright red and sticky. "I'll find you, and I'll put you back together. I promise."
"'M na hard ta find." Morag said, her tone even but her accent betraying her, as silent tears leaking out from behind her closed eyes. "I'll be at 'er table waitin', if'n he doesn'a kill me fer failin'. Put th' bloody glamour back on an' run, damn it. Dinna make me watch ye go."
"You didn't fail," Draco disagreed, shaking his head even though he knew she couldn't see it, and squeezed her hand before turning towards the door. "I'm dead, Blood, for all intents and purposes. Save yourself, for me."
It was less than two days before Draco was hauled through the doors of Malfoy Manor and made a prisoner in his own home, and it was only because he was believed to be dead that it took even that long.
Draco looked utterly defeated, the way he didn't even bother to hold himself up in his chains, and refused to say so much as a word. Voldemort was sure that he had finally won.
"You've escaped me far too many times, boy," he hissed, stroking Draco's cheek with one long, veined finger. "Rest assured, it won't happen again."
But even restrained, Draco was not giving up without a fight. He put all of his energy into protecting his mind, protecting Blood, and when they put him under Veritaserum, all he would say was: Not her fault.
He had been living a double life for so long that his Occlumency was stronger than even his father knew, and it took days-- days without food or water to lower his defences-- before he gave even an inch.
Morag was there in the room when it happened. Lucius was forcing Draco's head up, forcing his eyes open, keeping them locked on his even as Draco fought to escape his gaze. It was after he managed to glance away, to look at her, when Lucius finally managed to get a single sound out of him. It was a small, tired whimper, a beaten longing for freedom-- any freedom-- but there was nothing she could do to help him.
Not until he was already broken, and believed beyond repair.
"You're not still with them, are you?" Draco asked urgently, peering at her from beneath his blankets. "You can't, Blood, they know."
"No." Morag replied, the memory of the day in Knockturn Alley playing over in her mind. "No, I'm not. I'm now only my own boss, unless the Order gets pushy, but I'm not sure if I'm even with them anymore."
Draco's eyes cleared suddenly, and he pushed the blankets away, leaving them in a pile on the counter as he slid to the floor. "Good," he said, relief evident in his voice as he moved towards her. "I meant to keep my promise, I did. You weren't supposed to have to put me back together, Blood, I'm so sorry."
Morag stared at him as he switched from what seemed to be still a little confused to how he used to sound. "I couldn't leave you like that." She said finally. "Not like that, not ever. They told me to dispose of your body--"
She paused, and her voice dropped to a whisper. "But you were still alive, and I couldn't do anything else. If I hadn't been able to...." She swallowed and shook her head. "It doesn't matter."
"It does matter," Draco insisted, voice harsher than usual from fighting to hold on to the sudden burst of clarity. "It matters more than you know. I saved myself once, but you...I'd be dead twice over if not for you, and..." he swallowed, shaking his head as if he could clear it, and then his eyes went all hazy again. "You can't, Blood, I love you too much."
"I can't what?" Morag asked, puzzled for a moment, before she lost her breath completely at his other words. "You don't know what you're saying."
She shook her head in disbelief as she started to cry, clasping her hands behind her back to hide their trembling. He couldn't love her, it would make everything hurt that much worse. "I love you more than anything, but you...You're still not completely well, Fire."
"You can't go back, you can't die, you can't let them get you," Draco said desperately, trying to look at her even as his eyes clouded over, and he reached out tentatively with one hand. "Damn it, I-- potion-- I do know. I'm saying...I meant it."
"I won't," Morag said, fighting her own voice along with her own inner battles, summoning a potion with a flick of her wand. "You know it's damn near impossible to catch me, and I love you, too."
She took his hand and squeezed it lightly before handing him the potion. "Don't strain yourself, Fire."
Draco clung to her hand as he tilted his head back and poured the potion down his throat, then dropped the vial to the floor with a crash. His eyes were even clearer than before when he looked at her again, and he took a step forward, letting go of her hand to wrap his arms around her waist, tucking his head beneath her chin.
"Worth the strain, Blood," he whispered, closing his eyes. "I know I'm still...but I loved you before, when my mind wasn't playing tricks on me. You'll put me back together, and then I'll do the same for you. If you need me to."
"Ye jus' did." Morag said roughly, wrapping her arms around him, and taking comfort in the embrace. "I dinna care if it takes the rest o my life ta fix what they did, Fire, ye've been all I've really been living for fer to long ta give up tha' easily."
Draco wanted to answer her, to tell her that she was all that he was living for, all he'd been fighting for, but even with the potion, the emotional overload finally managed to beat him. "Mmluffyou," he managed to murmur, and then he was fast asleep, cradled in her arms.