Genre: Lotrps AU/Harry Potter future!fic crossover
Summary: Dom becomes a teacher at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and finds himself strangely attracted to Elijah, one of the Gryffindor seventh-years.
Warnings: Like I said, AU and crossover. Also it's HP so, obviously, supernatural stuff.
Disclaimer: The wonderful HP world is created by JK Rowling who is not me, and the LOTR boys do not belong to me, both facts which I obviously regret but are nevertheless true. Sniff.
Feedback: Makes me prostrate myself at your feet and grovel pathetically.
Author's notes: Thanks go, as always, to my wonderful beta pinkegogirl. Thanks also go to BBC1 and Jonathan Ross, for generously allowing me to ogle Teh Dom for 20 whole minutes tonight! OMG wasn't he adorkable? Eeehh! Skinny though. Eat more, Dom!
Moving on now to:
The two of them got off the elevator on the recently instated Department of Magical Integration, where Dom led them to a door labelled ‘Guidance Offices’, and opened it with a flourish, admitting Elijah before he himself entered and closed the door behind him.
The little entrée they walked into was not unlike the reception area of a doctor’s office, complete with a little waiting area with plastic chairs and a low table piled with outdated editions of Witch Weekly and the Quibbler.
The reception desk, however, was the smallest Elijah had ever seen in his life; it was about the size of a pre-schooler’s table in class. Behind it was a funny-looking little man of approximately three foot high, with a dark-skinned face that positively radiated experience and charisma.
“Dominic!” he exclaimed upon their entrance, and instantly every line in his face seemed to be smiling. He hopped down from his chair and walked over to the Changeling, shaking his hand vigorously.
Dom slapped him on the back, beaming, then straightened and laid his hand on Elijah’s shoulder. “Elijah, meet Kiran. He’s the head of reception here. Kiran, this is my student, Elijah.”
“Aah, yes, the boy wanting to become a Guide,” said Kiran, seizing Elijah’s hand in a remarkably strong grip and studying him keenly with deep, dark eyes. “I knew you were coming, of course. Welcome, welcome.”
“Nice to meet you,” said Elijah, liking the small man already.
“Kiran knows everything that’s going on in this place,” Dom explained. “You can ask him anything about who comes and goes around here.”
“How many of those are there, exactly?” asked Elijah curiously. Kiran thought about it only for a little while before replying.
“Thirteen Metamorphmagi, twenty-one Seers, seventeen werewolves, two Changelings, three spell-victims and nineteen half-creatures,” he then summed up without batting an eye.
Elijah stared. Dom smirked. “Told you.”
“And how many of you are working here?”
“Five?” Elijah repeated incredulously. “Seventy-five charges and only five Guides?”
“Well, no,” said Kiran, looking at him kindly. “There’s five people working in this Office. That’s Yoon Jin, our resident Seer, Hugo the keeper of the Archives, myself of course, and Fran and Phillipa.”
“Are you trying to tell me,” said Elijah slowly, his voice shaking, “that there’s only two people here trying to manage all those seventy-five cases?”
Kiran nodded solemnly.
“But that’s an inhuman thing to ask of only two people!”
“Which is why we need you,” said a new voice.
Two women had appeared in a doorway behind Kiran’s tiny reception desk. Fran Elijah recognised at once from the Christmas dinner. The woman next to her, he assumed was the other Guide: a friendly-looking, motherly sort of woman, with a kind smile. Fran was smiling, too, but it was a sad, wry smile.
“As Dom undoubtedly told you, ours is not a very popular profession. The work is often difficult, the hours often long, and there is still a lot of predjudice and unreasonable fear of those different from ourselves. Young people don’t come to us naturally.”
“I did,” said Elijah softly.
Fran’s smile now lit up her eyes. “Yes, you did, which is why you were allowed to come here in the first place. Our office is not open to anyone who doesn’t have business here. We’ve made an exception for you, Elijah, because we really want you.”
“I’m honoured,” replied Elijah, and he meant it. Dom smiled proudly at him in a way that even a particularly dim-witted troll could not have interpreted as mere approval of his student’s attitude. Fran and Phillipa exchanged a meaningful look but refrained from comment.
The two Guides first took Dom and Elijah to their office for tea, and invited the eager young student to ask them anything he wanted to know. Soon they were talking away about the different sorts of people who required Guidance.
Elijah noticed that both Fran and Phillipa kept their conversation general, and hardly ever spoke to him about specific cases. When he asked them about this they told him a Guide should under no circumstances reveal the identity or specifics of their charges, unless the individual had given specific consent to do so.
“You must understand,” said Phillipa, “that people like our Dom here are very rare. Most of those under our supervision prefer to keep their true selves a secret, rather than come out and face the complications of being different in our world. Being of Muggle heritage, you must know something about that.”
“Yeah,” said Elijah wryly, remembering Josh and the constant digs at his Muggle mother. “Yeah, I think I know what you mean.”
“Well then, you’ll know how much courage it must take to come out to the world and admit you’re different,” said Fran. “Dom is one of the few charges I’ve had who was brave enough to do that. He really is one of a kind, don’t you think?”
“As I’ve told him,” said Elijah, smiling at Dom and immediately regretting it. He saw another look pass between Fran and Phillipa and knew their game was up. Damn, but why did Dom feel the need to surround himself with such perceptive women?
“Kiran,” said Fran, and the little man appeared at her elbow almost instantly, “could you please take Elijah and show him around the rest of the Office? We’ll catch up later. There’s something we’ve to discuss with Dom.”
“Of course,” said Kiran, smiling as he took Elijah by the arm. “This way, please.”
Elijah looked over his shoulder at Dom as he was being led out of the office. The Changeling had evidently not yet caught on; his face was a picture of confusion. Then the door shut mercilessly behind them and Elijah was left to wonder what was going on behind it.
Kiran led Elijah back through the reception area and through another door, then down a narrow corridor. This department certainly wasn’t as large or well-equipped as Elijah had previously thought it would be. In fact, it was rather small and cramped, and had a neglected feeling about it, as though the rest of the Ministry had put it away in a corner in the hopes of forgetting it was there. It made Elijah feel sad, and angry.
They went through another door, and Elijah found himself standing in a small office which was furnished rather differently from any he had ever seen. Rather than a desk, there was a round table standing in the middle of the room, covered with a purple silk cloth. In the centre of the table was a crystal like the ones they used for Divination at Hogwarts; only this one was larger and not as scratched and chipped. Around it were scattered several decks of cards, differently coloured stones, and a drawing-pad with some hastily written symbols.
Apart from the familiar objects, the office was nothing like the Divination classroom in the North Tower; it was brightly-lit, well-aired, and the woman now standing up to greet them could hardly be more different from Professor Blanchett.
She was small, almost petite, with such a good figure that it made even Elijah, an openly gay man, look twice. Long, shiny, ebony hair framed a perfectly shaped face with beautiful dark eyes and a smile that could make any man stop in his tracks. She was stunning.
“This is Yoon Jin, our Seer,” explained Kiran. “She foresees births and deaths and everything in between. Very handy to have around. Yoon, this young man wants to be a Guide… but of course you knew that.”
Yoon Jin made a face at him. “How amusing you are, Kiran.” Her voice was soft and had a pleasant foreign accent, and she turned her blinding smile to Elijah.
“Hello,” she said, holding out a slender hand. Elijah smiled back almost shyly, and took it.
As soon as he touched her, she let out a gasp and stared at him, wide-eyed. Her other hand came up to cover his and she breathed out slowly, still looking intently at him. After a few more moments she smiled.
“There is much love in you,” she said, looking into his eyes. “Enough even for him. Give it generously, for he needs it as the flower needs the sun. Your light has enough strength not to wither in the sight of his own. Once joined together, no darkness shall quench it.”
Her hands tightened around his, and she frowned. “I see two joined hands, going down a long and winding path. The path is difficult at times, yet as long as the hands stay joined, they will help each other along. But let not their eyes be only for the horizon ahead, glorious though it be. For there are serpents still on the ground, and where eyes do not care to look feet may be unwary. Beware! Beware of the serpent, and always keep one eye on the ground…”
Her voice trailed away, and she let go of his hand. Elijah didn’t think he had ever had a more surreal experience in his life, and he wasn’t sure he liked it. In fact, it freaked him the fuck out. “What… what do you mean? Where should I look? What…”
But Yoon Jin just shook her head, unable or perhaps unwilling to say more. Elijah wanted to press on, but was interrupted by the arrival of Fran, Phillipa and Dom. He noticed at once that his lover seemed to be lost in thought.
As soon as they had left Yoon Jin’s office and were walking down the corridor to yet another door, Elijah went to walk beside Dom as much as he could. Touching his hand to get his attention, he whispered: “they know, don’t they?”
“Hmm?” said Dom absently. “Oh… yeah, they do. I figured as much, though. Don’t worry, they won’t tell. They’re happy for us.”
“So what was your talk about, then?”
“Nothing that can’t wait until later,” said Dom evasively.
Seeing that Dom was evidently preoccupied, Elijah pushed Yoon Jin’s words, which already seemed surreal to him now that he was out of the mystical athmosphere of her office, to the back of his mind. He decided not to worry Dom with them, not yet. He looked like he already had enough to think about without any scary prophecies to add to it. It could wait.
When they entered the next room, the first thing Elijah noticed was the light, which was silvery white and misty, like the light coming from a unicorn. Squinting to find the lightsource and focusing on the room, Elijah gasped as he saw what it was.
The room was the size of a small football field, and most of the space was occupied by what looked like row upon row of man-high bookcases. The shelves of these were occupied by what must surely be hundreds of stone basins, most of them giving off that strange, silvery light. Each Pensieve was colour-coded around the base, and labelled with a handwritten nametag.
“Welcome to the Archive,” said Fran. “This is where we keep the records of all our charges.”
Elijah’s eyes were huge as he looked at the vast expanse of shelves. “Whoa.”
“That seems to be an accurate description,” laughed Fran. “Unfortunately we can’t show you how it works, everything stored here being strictly confidential, but…”
“I could show him mine,” offered Dom.
Fran looked skeptical. “Dom, are you sure you want Elijah to see all that?”
Dom looked aside at his lover. “I’m sure. There shouldn’t be any secrets between us, not now. It’s important for him to see it all, know what it’s like. You know?”
Elijah had the fleeting idea that there was more being said between the Changeling and the Guide than they let on, but in truth he was far too fascinated by his surroundings to properly listen to them.
“Why shouldn’t you show it to me?” he asked, once Fran had returned to her office after providing them with directions to Dom’s file, and they were strolling along the aisle towards it.
Dom was silent for a while. “There are things I’ve done… the way that I’ve behaved sometimes… that I’m not proud of. You’ll see for yourself.”
He halted and turned to lift a Pensieve labelled DBPLM from its shelf, setting it on a strategically placed table in the aisle. Elijah studied the symbols and colour-codes on the rim with interest, looking questioningly at Dom, who smiled and complied to the wordless request.
“These,” he explained, pointing at a group of symbols at the bottom, “indicate the category I fall in. Human-born, non-human, Changeling. This,” pointing at a symbol above, “says how much supervision I need. Muggle-born, so a lot. And these,” running his finger over the colour-codes on the rim, “represent my current status. Active, adjusted.” This last word he said with a certain pride.
Elijah looked into the basin’s glowing contents with some apprehension. “So… how exactly does this work? How much is in here?”
“Everything,” said Dom matter-of-factly. “Everything they know about me. Every visit, every conversation with or about me, all the data. But don’t worry,” he added as he saw Elijah’s look. “We’re not going to look at them all. I’m in them, which means I can skim through. I’ll give you the condensed version.”
Elijah smiled nervously. “What do I do?”
“Just follow me. I’ll guide you through it. Here, you go first.”
Dom rolled his eyes. “Just dive in. Plunge your face in, the rest will follow. Go on.”
Staring into the swirling contents of Dom’s Pensieve, Elijah slowly bent forward until he was standing in a weird sort of bow. His nose was about an inch away from the silvery stuff now.
Taking a deep breath, he closed his eyes and plunged in. He felt his feet leave the floor of the Archive, and he was falling, falling, falling downwards, until at last his feet suddenly landed firmly on a stone floor once more. He opened his eyes.