Lucius Malfoy And The Gift Of Mercy
"I don't care how much you want my body," Lucius Malfoy shreiked down from the roof of the Slytherin tower. "You'll never take me alive, Potter! Never!"
Below, the Marauders exchanged glances, and Sirius rolled his eyes.
"I can think of a hundred better ways he could have worded that," he muttered.
"Talk about melodramatic," James agreed.
"He's just a little excitable," said Remus, benevolently.
Peter only smirked, and squinted up at the thin figure splayed against the tiles. Lucius was holding onto his broom with one hand, and with the other he felt across the rooftop, straining to gain purchase on the nearest windowledge. His precarious position caused James to clutch tighter at his own broom – if Lucius fell, James hoped he'd be able to catch the boy in time. Dumbledore could overlook the more minor of their criminal offences, but a flattened third year would be a sure route to expulsion.
"Excitable?" Sirius was still grumbling. "If the boy was any higher strung he'd be singing soprano."
"I'm fairly sure he hit a high C back there," said Remus. "Then again, that does seem to be a rather common after-effect of getting kneed very hard between the legs."
"I was aiming for his face," said Sirius. "Honestly. Anyone could have made the same mistake."
"Remind me not to copy from you in our biology O.W.Ls, Padfoot," James quipped, lightly.
"You freaks," Lucius was yelling. Someone had opened the window – Narcissa, no other girl in the school had hair that blonde – and was leaning out to help him in. "You sick, sick freaks."
"Good grief. You'd think we were a bunch of perverts desperate to coerce him into playing out our darkest sexual fantasies," said Remus, looking thoughtful.
The others stared at him, and wisely chose not to comment.
Peter scuffed his feet in the dirt. "It's not as if we were planning to seriously harm him," he remarked.
"A little experimentation never hurt anyone," James echoed, frowning.
Remus withdrew a glass vial from his pocket and shook it with his thumb over the top. The contents were bright blue to begin with, but when they settled once more they had shifted to a luminous orange. Remus sniffed the potion, warily, and sighed.
"Strawberry," he said. "It should be lemon-scented. At least, that's what the book said."
"What's the difference?" said Peter, shrugging. "They're both fruity."
James tugged Peter's sleeve. "Speaking of fruity," he murmured, sotto voce, "just look what the griffin dragged in."
The Marauders turned as one boy to regard the tall figure who was advancing across the grounds toward them. Serverus was holding his robes daintily above his ankles as he moved over the dewey grass, his nose crinkled. Peter and Remus, the smaller members of the foursome, shrunk almost instinctively behind James and Sirius, who remained where they were, folding their arms across their chests.
"Nice afternoon for a stroll, wouldn't you say?" James offered cheerily.
"Marvellous weather for it," Sirius agreed.
"Don't be smart," Serverus snapped out, letting go of the hem of his robe. "Do you want to tell me exactly what all that noise was about, or should I go to straight to Professor Hagaway and suggest he calls you in for a quick chat?"
James grimaced. Professor Hagaway was James' least favourite teacher – the Potions master hated all four Marauders with a passion, but adored Serverus, his star pupil. If the matter went to Hagaway, James was fairly certain what the outcome of the affair would be. Fifty points from each of their houses, not to mention the lines they'd be forced to write out.
"A third year got stuck on the roof," said Sirius, blithely. "We were offering him advice on how to get down."
"Yes – I heard you screaming: "Jump, you little git!"," Serverus smirked, and Sirius flushed slightly. "Listen, Black – you're walking a fine line here already. You remember what Dumbledore said? One more slip up this year and you're out." Serverus made a sharp motion with his index finger.
"Who died and made you Head Boy?" Peter spluttered out, from behind James.
Serverus turned on him, his eyes narrow. "Peter, I would have expected better of you," he snapped. "Teasing the younger wizards! Playing with dangerous potions!" Remus tucked the vial back into his robe a second too late. "You sully the reputation of our house."
"Actually," said Remus, blinking, "he makes quite a good role model, for your average Slytherin."
Serverus' glare could have curdled a minotaur's milk. Remus blanched, and withdrew.
"At any rate," said Serverus, "you and I should be heading to the potions laboratory now, Peter. Professor Hagaway was nice enough to let me use the room to help you with your homework. Come along, Peter."
He strode away. Peter gave the other Marauders an ashamed shrug, and trotted obediently after Serverus.
When they were gone, the remaining members of the group groaned as one.
"I could just – murder Snape, sometimes," Sirius grunted.
"He is right, though," said Remus. "I forgot about your discussion with Dumbledore. Just imagine if we'd gone through with our plan. Malfoy would have squealed to any teacher he could find."
"Potion didn't even work right," Sirius grumbled, looking at his feet. "Wrong bloody smell, right? It wouldn't have hurt him in the slightest."
"Or it might have had ended up sending him to the infirmary," said Remus.
James sighed, and stared up toward the window in the Slytherin tower. Two blonde heads were peering out – Lucius and Narcissa, both probably pleased at the ticking off Snape had given them. James found himself blushing – even from this distance, the very idea of Narcissa was enough to make him quake in his shoes.
There were rumours (probably put about by jealous girls and rejected boys) that her mother had been a Veela, and Narcissa was beautiful enough for James to believe it. But Narcissa only ever dated boys in the Slytherin house; he'd overheard her telling Serverus she wouldn't be seen dead with a Gryffindor. James had never regretted the choice the Sorting Hat had made in placing him until that moment.
He regretted the trick they'd wanted to play on Lucius now, too. It would have been funny to see the boy transform – but it certainly wouldn't have been worth the trouble they'd have gotten into for the prank. Not to mention the fact that Narcissa probably wouldn't speak to him again for harming Lucius – since coming to Hogwarts, the uptight little third year had swiftly become one of her 'favourites'. Narcissa had a soft spot for pretty boys like Malfoy.
James spat into the dirt. It wasn't as if Narcissa ever stooped to speaking to such lowlife as James Potter, anyway. They were both worlds apart, socially and intellectually. But a boy could always dream, couldn't he?
"What are we going to do with the Transgender potion?" Remus wanted to know. "To be honest, I wouldn't even test it on a rat."
"Don't let Peter hear you say that," said James, with a faint grin.
Remus took out the vial again and shook it. "Smells like lemons now, though," he murmured. "Perhaps it just needed time to settle. It said too much shaking would make it explode, anyway.."
His dark eyes flickered over Sirius and James.
"Either of you willing to be a guinea pig?" he asked, wriggling his eyebrows at them.
"You must be joking." Sirius laughed, and made a grab for the vial. Remus took a step backwards, but Sirius's hand had fastened about his wrist. Remus tried to jerk away, but Sirius was enjoying playing the bully – he began to slowly pry Remus' fingers, one by one, from the tube. James made a face, and moved closer to help Remus.
"Sirius – give him a break," he suggested, mildly.
"Nah. I figure if he wants a guinea-pig –"
But his words were cut off by a sudden bang. The three boys jumped, startled, as the vial imploded in Remus' hand – just as Remus had said it would. James, unthinking, wiped away the splatter of neon orange liquid which coated his glasses, and blinked myopicly at his friends, both of whom were sprayed with the stuff. Sirius was expressionless – in shock, it seemed, but Remus simply shook where he had landed, on his ass in a flowerbed.
They looked so ridiculous that James couldn't help but laugh. A second later Sirius had joined in, panting a little from the surprise. Meanwhile Remus struggled desperately to claw his way from the vine tendrils which were sticking to his clothing. He didn't look amused in the slightest – which only made the sight of him, orange-smeared and entangled, all the more comical.
"We are hopeless," James chuckled.
"Just don't lick yourself," said Sirius, and at that thought they both doubled over.
Remus finally managed to separate himself from the foliage and stood, watching them in silence. His glumness put a damper on the others' mirth, and James choked back further peals of laughter.
"What's up, Moony?" he said. "You have to admit that was pretty funny."
"No," snapped Remus. "No, it wasn't. You obviously didn't take even the slightest interest when I read out the details of the potion to you."
"Oh, come on," said Sirius. "It's just a potion. We can steal the ingredients again for you if you want to make another."
"I don't mean that," Remus hissed. "This potion is effective as soon as it touches bare skin."
Sirius and James stared at him wide-eyed in horror.
"How long have we got?" James whispered.
"How long have you got, you mean," said Remus. "The potion doesn't work on werewolves." He cast a look toward the sky. "Oh, about an hour or two before it starts to work," he said. "I hope you're happy, Padfoot. Now we're going to have to think up a bloody excuse for Dumbledore to explain why James Potter and Sirius Black have suddenly turned into Jane and Siriah."
Lucius dashed to the window. Below him, he saw three of the infamous Marauders snickering together, and angrily slammed the window shut. He hated the gang fiercely – they were the biggest group of bullies in the school, and they'd been picking on him the moment he stepped into Hogwarts. Pettigrew had put a frog in his bed, and he didn't even want to think back to the day that Sirius and James had cornered him in the toilets and held him down, flushing his head repeatedly in a bowl.
He turned back to the common room. Narcissa was watching him expectantly.
"They drive me mad," Lucius complained. "What have I ever done to them?"
Narcissa laughed prettily, and drew her legs up on the couch to give Lucius room. "You did cast a spell on Potter to make his underwear appear on the outside of his robe, didn't you?" she chimed.
"That was after he attacked me in the library," said Lucius, settling down beside her. "It was self-defense."
"He'll never forgive you for that," said Narcissa, putting an arm around him. "He's a terrible coward on his own, but with his friends behind him he won't be satisfied until he's made your life a living hell. Sorry, love – you know I help you as much as I can, but I can't be everywhere at once."
"I don't need your help."
"Don't Lucius me. Can't you see I'm thinking?"
Narcissa bit back a witty retort, and moved to massage Lucius' shoulders. If any other boy had talked to her in that manner, Narcissa would have let them have a taste of her acid sarcasm – but Lucius was different. For one thing, he was impossibly handsome, and charming when he wanted to be. Not to mention intelligent – though he was two years younger he could still give Narcissa a run for her money in a wizarding duel.
He was a good friend but a terrible enemy, and Narcissa was a little afraid of his temper – as were most of the other Slytherins. Even Serverus tiptoed quietly around Lucius as if he feared to incur the boy's wrath.
He's really going to do something rash, this time, she thought unhappily. Sending him fleeing onto the roof like that would cause anyone to think vengeful thoughts – and Lucius was notoriously cruel when slighted. No one made fun of a Malfoy, he'd say, his silver eyes narrowed. No one. Especially not Gryffindor upstarts like the Marauders.
"I'm going to see Serverus," Lucius hissed, finally, rising – Narcissa quickly recoiled her hands. "He should be able to set me up with something – suitably nasty." He smirked. "Something that'll make them think twice about messing with a Malfoy." He clicked his fingers. "You'll wait here for me."
Narcissa knew better than to disobey. "As you wish, love," she murmured, squeezing her long legs to her chest.
Lucius padded out, sauntering – he didn't ever walk. His hands in his pockets, he made his way through the crowds of students in the hallways. It was Friday, and Hogwarts was a bustle of cheerful activity, everyone eager for the weekend. A couple of Hufflepuff girls tried to entice him into conversation, but Lucius wasn't interested – he thought Hufflepuff girls were about as sexually attractive as, well, Peter Pettigrew, for one. He was about to turn left down the corridor towards the Potion labs when he caught a glimpse of three neon-orange figures, clustered together in the darkness of the nearby lockers.
He crooked an eyebrow, frowning. The Marauders again – but this time Lucius had to snigger. It seemed they'd come out on the wrong end of whatever illegal potion they'd attempted to drug him with. Ducking out of sight behind the edge of a locker, he waited until they passed him by – keeping their heads lowered, their robes pulled over their heads – not that it really mattered. Lucius knew Sirius Black's self important swagger anywhere. The kid walked as if he was trying to hold a wand between his knees.
They paused outside the Gryffindor common room, before the portrait-hole. Lucius balled himself into the wall, and heard them whisper the password – "jelly beans." How utterly mundane and repulsively Gryffindor.. He waited until they entered, muttering quietly to each other. Checking his watch, Lucius figured he'd give them a few minutes to get comfortable before heading in after them. Meanwhile, he primed his wand with hexes – grinning maliciously.
They'd get what was coming to them.
"Peter. How many times do I have to tell you. Stir first, then add ragwort. If you don't, it'll make your frog turn into – well." Snape assessed the unlucky amphibian. "Whatever it is now. A hedge-frog? A frog-pig?"
"I think it's both," said Peter, frustrated. "Or neither." He threw up his hands. "I can't do it. I may as well forget the whole thing and go back to my room," he added, hopefully.
"Not so fast," said Serverus, laying a hand on Peter's shoulder before the boy could scoop up his hedge-pig and make a run for it. "Before you go you might like to explain to me exactly what you had planned for Malfoy."
"Come on, Peter. You don't want me to tell Professor Hagaway it was you who stole the ingredients for that potion Lupin was holding –"
Peter looked shifty. "Okay. It was a Transgender potion."
"A what?" Serverus was somewhat surprised. He'd expected it would take a lot more time and effort dragging the information out of Peter – but then Peter was a Slytherin, after all, and a selfish one at that. The boy had no loyalties to anyone but himself.
"Transgender," Peter explained, helpfully, in a babble. "Remus found the potion in one of the old books in the restricted section which he and James went to check out using James' invisibility cloak and Remus is really a werewolf and James was the one who drew you on the toilet wall with Hagaway's Bastard Love Child written underneath and Sirius still wets the bed and James has a secret crush on Narcissa and you should probably know that they're planning to put a curse on your food tomorrow night so that every time you eat something it'll come out your nose."
"He he," said Peter, weakly, shuffling his feet.
"I only asked about the potion," said Serverus, in a small voice.
"I was just telling you the rest, in case you wanted to know later," said Peter. "Did I mention that when he sleeps Remus sometimes calls out your name?"
"Oh, and Lucius has hired four prostiwitches with the clap and is sending them to Sirius' house for his birthday. And Sirius sometimes wears women's clothing. He has a pair of pink lacey panties which he has on under his robes. He looks up animal pornography on the wizard-net, too."
"My gods," muttered Serverus. "What sort of fool would ever ask you to keep a secret for them."
Peter had the decency to blush.
He was bunched up behind a couch, his slim body coiled like a tense spring, twitching. Around the edge of the seat he could see Remus pacing back and fortch across the Gryffindor common room, while James and Sirius sat miserably on opposite ends of the hearth, cross-legged. They'd managed to wipe off the muck on their bodies, but their robes were still stained – the neon-orange had turned into a paler, vomit green.
They kept casting looks at each other, waiting for something. Lucius couldn't work out what they were waiting for, but he hazarded a guess it had something to do with the potion.
"I kind of – hurt," said Sirius, finally. "My – chest. Irk."
James made a feverish grab for his crotch. "Oh my stars," he whimpered. "I'm – retracting."
"What's an inch or two between friends," Remus smirked. The boy wasn't amused though – more angry. Lucius could feel the tension knotted up in Remus' strained fists. James and Sirius started to whine, pained noises; Sirius curled up foetally and clutched at himself, while James fell back, twitching, his glasses falling from his nose and skidding off across the hearth.
"I'm getting – aaah!"
"No. No. Come back." James was squeaking at his genitals.
Oh, if only I had a camera, Lucius thought. He grinned. This was karma, definately.
"Shouldn't be much longer," said Remus, who'd averted his eyes from the scene. "A couple more minutes of agony and then you'll have six blissful hours being – whatever it is you are."
The two spell-struck boys released simultaneous groans, and relaxed. Without looking at each other, they attempted to rise to their feet, James covering his face with his hands.
It wasn't difficult to see what had happened – even from behind the couch. Sirius had always liked his robes flatteringly skintight, so that the slightest movement would show off the tight curve of his abdomen. Except now the curves were in the wrong places, and his dark hair had extended, falling laciviously over his cheekbones – the bum fluff on his chin he'd so lovingly attended to had vanished.
And James – well, James was in a state. Lucius imagined the boy's – the girl's – back must be killing him. Not even Narcissa had a bosom like that.
Behind the couch, the young Slytherin couldn't contain himself any longer. He burst out laughing.
The Marauders jumped, as one boy.
"How the hell did you get in here?"
Lucius only laughed harder. Sirius' affected, gruff voice had evolved into a high pitched whine.
"You little –"
Lucius gasped, rolling onto his stomach and beating the floor with his fists. He could barely see through his tears. He felt them grasp him – Sirius was muttering something about making another damn potion, but Remus dragged him back. The three of them manhandled Lucius onto a couch, swearing and cursing all the while. Lucius let them. He wasn't in a fit state to resist – and every time he managed to open his eyes he fell into another round of giggles.
"What are we going to do?" James chirped, unhappily.
"Kill him," Sirius said, reaching for his wand. There was murder in his eyes.
"Don't even think about it," said Remus, shortly, restraining the darkhaired amazon before he did any further damage. "We're not going to get into any more trouble than we're already in, Padfoot. Be rational, for goodness sake."
"I have breasts and you expect me to be rational?" Sirius squeaked, on the verge of hysteria.
Lucius choked for air.
"We'll just have to keep him here until the potion has worn off you both," said Remus. "No one will believe him afterwards. Lucius – stop laughing. This isn't funny."
"Breasts," Lucius panted. "Oh my.."
Sirius slapped him. Lucius snapped out of it. Sirius wrung his hand.
"Think I broke a nail," he mumbled.
Even James sniggered at that, and quickly covered his face again before Sirius fixed him with a glare. Remus groaned, and opened his mouth to speak – but Lucius managed to beat him to it.
"It appears as if you're all in a spot of bother," the Slytherin said, still wheezing a little. "Now – exortion isn't one of my finer talents, I'll admit – but all this is surely worth a pretty price, wouldn't you say?"
James leapt for Sirius before he could manage to get in another slap. As the two boy-girls struggled on the floor for the upperhand, Remus took control of the situation.
"What do you want, Malfoy," he sighed.
Lucius pretended to consider, stroking his chin with his index finger.
"Oh, nothing important. Just - their female virginity."
Remus blanched – he'd obviously been expecting something along the lines of lunch money. On the floor, Sirius let out a wild yelp of indignance, and tried to drag himself out of the clutches of James' arms. James pulled him down again, with an effort. A little mud, Lucius mused voyeuristicly, and the right lighting..
"What? Why?" Remus stuttered.
"Come on, Lupin," Lucius drawled. "If you were in the same position – what would you ask for? Certainly not something so banal as a packet of jellybeans."
From the expression on his face, it seemed that Remus had probably considered such a meek exchange. "Malfoy – please. If anyone finds out about this, Sirius will get expelled. But – trading sex for your silence? That's going a little too far."
"Better make a choice quick, Lupin." Lucius snapped his fingers. "I might toss a night with you into the bargain too, if you don't hurry up."
"I'll give you Potter," said Remus, quickly.
"What?" shrieked James.
"I want both."
"Potter or nothing. Who knows, maybe Dumbledore will be lenient. He certainly has been in the past. And we're good at making up stories."
Lucius frowned. "I'd prefer Black to Potter," he admitted.
"What?" shrieked James again.
"You won't get Sirius," said Remus. "Even if I promised you to him. He has standards. Or rather – he's plain pig-headed about things like this."
"So it's happened before, then?" said Lucius, raising an eyebrow.
"Not exactly." Remus shrugged. "But I did convince James to run through the dinner hall in his underwear during our first year, after losing a bet. Sirius refused, point blank."
"That was only because he was wearing his pink panties at the time," James grunted.
"Oh, you bitch," said Sirius.
"Potter or nothing, Malfoy," said Remus.
Lucius yawned deliberately. A room of Gryffindors – the infamous Marauders, no less – playing to his whims, offering themselves bodily to him.. he couldn't have planned it better himself.
"I guess if that's your final offer –"
"You'll take it, then."
"I suppose so," Lucius drawled. "My silence for Potter's virginity. Nice doing business with you, Lupin."
"The pleasure's been entirely yours," Remus snapped.
On the ground, James sat up abruptly, white faced – he gazed helplessly at Remus, words escaping him. He couldn't believe one of his best friends had just traded him in for – he gulped. But there was Sirius to think about; James couldn't bear to imagine what would happen to Sirius of the boy was expelled. That bastard, Malfoy, James thought, miserably.
"Are you in, Potter?" Remus asked.
"Yes. I'm in," James said, looking at the floor.
Lucius sniggered, and Remus shot the third year a glare.
"What now, Malfoy?" he hissed, bitterly.
"Oh, nothing," said Lucius, pleasantly. "Just I guess it's like we Slytherins always said. The Marauders are bunch of pussies."
James bit his lip. "Hey," he trilled. "I resemble that remark."
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