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HP: Beneath Me (Ted Tonks/Black sisters)

olivehornby organized the Black Ficathon for blackaholics. I was assigned stiletto, whose challenges were:
  1. Bellatrix or Narcissa is/was in love with a boy named Ted Tonks.
  2. Peter stays the night at 12 Grimmauld Place (whether with MP&P or when he is a Death Eater) at talks to one of the Black family.
I opted for the first one.

Title: Beneath Me
Author: voleuse
Fandom: Harry Potter
Pairings: Ted Tonks/Black sisters (but not like that)
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Summary: Love isn't from first sight.
Notes: Pre-series



i.

She doesn't take much notice of students not in her year, and especially not of those in other houses, but Bellatrix runs into a Hufflepuff one day while stalking down the hallway, and he bowls her over, figuratively and literally.

When he offers his hand to help her up, she focuses on how warm it is, how it almost engulfs hers. Then she looks up, into his eyes, and feels a shudder run down her spine.

"Sorry about that," he says, his accent flat and common, and she realizes that she's still holding onto his hand. "Didn't mean to run across you."

She nods, tilts her head in a way she knows is flattering, and runs her tongue slowly over her lips.

He blushes. "Got to go, have Quidditch--" And he's off.

*


The next time he runs down a hallway, Bellatrix deliberately crosses his path. He bowls her over, and they tumble to the floors, where her head thuds painfully against the stone. Her hands are trapped between their bodies, and she flexes her palms, feeling the press of hard muscle under his robes.

He rolls off her, standing quickly and offering her a hand up. "God, I'm sorry about that."

She lets a smile stretch her lips. "We must stop meeting like this..." She lets her voice trail off.

"Oh, Ted." He fills in the gap quickly. "Ted Tonks."

*


She sees him in the hallways, in the library, during mealtimes. He's relatively tall, solidly built, and handsome in a common, happy sort of way, and sometimes she finds it difficult to ignore him. If their paths happen to cross, he smiles and gallantly bows, letting her have the right of way.

She doesn't ask about him, ever, but during a Quidditch game he sweeps past the Slytherin stands, and Lavinia mentions something about the school's lowered standards, and really, Bellatrix doesn't need to know anything else about him.

Soon, instead of the crook of his mouth or the breadth of his shoulders, she notices the pronounced bow of his legs, his uneven tan, the bray of his laughter.

If they pass each other in the halls, she sniffs when he attempts small talk, and doesn't acknowledge his sketches of chivalry.

Eventually, she doesn't notice him at all.


ii.

She first notices Ted during third-year Charms, which Slytherin and Hufflepuff happen to have scheduled together.

Or, rather, Ted notices her.

Her usual partner in class, Constance, is absent from class due to an unfortunate Potions mix-up. Andromeda is fretting with her wand when Ted slides into the seat next to her.

"Your friend not here today?" Ted whispers to her, unaware of the dirty looks he's receiving from the other Slytherins.

Andromeda sees them, but she responds anyway. "Sick," she replies. "Potions."

"Ah." Ted nods knowingly. "My friend Philip fell off his broom during Quidditch practice. Broke his leg in four places."

"Oh. Shame."

He looks around the classroom. "Looks like we're the odd ones out."

"Seems so."

"Should we pair up, then?"

Professor Seleucus arrives, frowns at the class.

Andromeda shrugs. "Sure. Why not?"

It's only for one class, after all.

*


Even after Constance and Philip recover from their respective accidents, Ted keeps talking to Andromeda. A quick hello before Charms, a wave across the tables at dinner, an exchange of pleasantries if they run into each other in the library.

She finds it disconcerting. She is, after all, a Slytherin, and he a Hufflepuff, and never the twain shall meet.

Or so she's been told, but Ted seems to be the exception to the rule.

After a few weeks of growing used to his voice, she finds herself talking to him, as well. First, in the halls, friendly greetings. Then, in the library, discussions about classes they're both taking, professors they both have.

At a Quidditch game, she accidentally cheers when Ted scores for Hufflepuff, and that evening Bellatrix drags her into the common room and lectures her on house loyalty.

The next afternoon in Charms, she slips a note into Ted's bag.

*


He finds her by the lake. "You wanted to meet?"

She shrugs, slips her hand into his. "Thought we could take a walk."

She grins at the expression that crosses his face, and when he slings an arm around her shoulders, she doesn't even think to protest.


iii.

Narcissa can't stand her sisters' boyfriends.

Rodolphus isn't even worth thinking about, honestly, because he's too thin and too pale, and the way he looks at Narcissa makes her want to take several hot baths.

He's smart, though, and his family is an old one, and Narcissa knows his worth.

Andromeda's boyfriend, though. Ted? Narcissa thinks she could have liked him, because his jokes are funny, his eyes are blue, and he makes Andromeda happy.

But he is, first and foremost, a mudblood, and a Hufflepuff to boot.

Ted Tonks isn't worth the dirt Narcissa could scrape from her heel.

*


Narcissa is going to fail Transfiguration. She can feel it in her wand, in her bones, in every scrawled note from class.

Andromeda finds her poring over her scrolls in the common room at three in the morning.

"Cissa!" Andromeda has the nerve to sound scandalized, despite the fact that she's just returned, wearing grass-stained robes.

Narcissa hates that nickname. "What?" She rubs her eyes and frowns at her textbook.

"You're still studying?" Andromeda sprawls over a divan. "Transfiguration?"

"Of course." Narcissa stands up, stretches, listens to her joints creak.

Andromeda snatches her notes. "I could ask Ted to tutor you. He's brilliant with these spells."

"I--"

"It's settled." Andromeda leaps up the steps to her dormitory, taking Narcissa's notes with her. "Tomorrow afternoon!"

*


She meets Ted every other afternoon for two weeks. He gives her his own notes, lends her a hedgehog to practice spells on, and she tries not to think about what her father would say.

When she starts feeling guilty, she pretends Ted's a servant she's hired for the duration of the term.

She does, however, pass her final exam with full marks. At the news, Andromeda whirls her about the Slytherin common room, then dashes out to tell Ted.

When Ted congratulates her the next morning, Narcissa feels a surge of gratitude, but she only nods her head politely.

She never speaks to him again.


###

Originally posted here.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
moodfic
Jul. 19th, 2006 06:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm thrilled you liked it.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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