Title: Ruby's Honeymoon
Disclaimer: J. K. Rowling and associates own these characters. I am writing this story for fun and not profit.
Pairing: Established Harry/Marcus, Theodore/Draco, others briefly mentioned
Content Notes: Angst, brief violence, present tense, humor
Rating: R
Wordcount: This part 4200
Summary: Sequel to "Obsidian's Desire" and "Sapphire's Wedding." Marcus and Harry have a honeymoon period, more or less, what with Harry meeting Marcus's friends, accidents, and alarms of all sorts. At least the sex is good.
Author's Notes: This won't make sense without previous installments in the series, so read those first. This is a fic in my "From Litha to Lammas" series of shorter fics being posted between the summer solstice and Lammas this year, and will likely have two pars, the second up tomorrow.

Ruby's Honeymoon

Marcus lounges on the bench next to the pool in the gardens and watches Harry studying the flowers in front of him. Some of the ones from the wedding survived transplantation both to the grounds of the old manor house where they held the ceremony, and then a second one to the Flint gardens.

Marcus is impressed, and thinking of asking the florist about some of the spells. Confident though he is in his ability to keep up with Harry, it's always a good idea to have some magic on hand for strength and stamina.

"Did you have anything to say about it?"

Marcus blinks and glances at his husband. "Sorry, what? I was watching your arse more than your mouth."

Harry blinks, then laughs. "That's not what you said last night."

"I'd need more eyes to watch all the parts of you I want to watch."

Harry smiles harder, but persists. "I was just wondering whether you were upset about the job that I intend to pursue."

Marcus blinks. "Why would I be?"

"I mean—working in the Reparations Department at the Ministry isn't the most glamorous career. And we'll probably have to deal with almost daily Howlers from people who are upset about the decisions I make. And it'll take away somewhat from the time we spend together, even if I am only there a few days a week—"

"We have that ward up against Howlers. And I'd only be upset if I'd thought you made the choice because Granger pressured you into it. She talked about it a lot, but I don't think she pressured you."

"No, you're right." Harry steps back from the flowers that it soothes him to tend, but only for short bursts of time, as though he has a bad association with gardening for hours at once. Marcus is going to figure that out. "I made it on my own."

"And working part-time will keep you out from under Shacklebolt's thumb." Marcus yawns and spreads his legs. "Come here and put your mouth to good use. I promise to watch it now."

Harry snorts. "Are you going to make it worth my time? You look like you're about to go to sleep in the sun."

"Come, then sleep."

In the end, after Harry puts his mouth to good use and Marcus lets Harry rut with his own laziness against his thigh, that's what they both do.


"Theodore."

"Marcus." Theodore's smile is reserved, the way it always is, but in this case, Marcus thinks it has much more to do with the fact that Harry is standing at Marcus's side with his ring on his hand when Theodore comes through the Floo.

Marcus half-crushes his friend's hand and decides he won't let this nonsense linger. "Do I need to duel you?"

"I—what?"

"Do—I—need—to—duel—you?" Marcus asks, carefully spacing his words out. Most of the time, Theodore isn't the sort of person who needs that slowness. On the other hand, he's been spending a lot of time with Malfoy lately. "Because you don't like Harry?"

Theodore blinks and glances at Harry, who stares calmly back. "I. No, of course not. I've never had any negative interactions with Potter."

Harry just shakes his head when Marcus looks at him, but addresses Theodore. "I think what he means is that if you act like it's a burden to see your best friend married to me, Marcus is going to be upset."

Theodore straightens up and removes his partially-mangled hand from Marcus's hold. Marcus just waits. Theodore is intelligent enough to understand, one way or the other. Marcus admires him for that. If he has to learn, now, at the end of a wand, it'll be the first time, but they can still stay friends. And after he tears Theodore into bloody strips and reassembles him, then Theodore won't be upset about Harry.

"No. I. I can't say that I expected it when Marcus chose you, but it's all right that he did." Theodore clears his throat and apparently decides that he may as well abandon his usual subtlety, because no one else in the room with him at the moment is particularly fucking subtle. "Why did you choose him?"

"A piece of obsidian told me to."

"What?"

"It's true," Marcus says, enjoying it. And it is. "Come on, Theodore. Come into the sitting room and have tea with us. We'll talk more about why I married Harry, and more about why I'd defend him with my life even if you or Terrence were the ones who attacked him."

"I still don't understand about the obsidian," Theodore admits as Marcus escorts him into the sitting room, done up in subtle reds. Marcus catches Harry's eye, and Harry nods a little. Besides the fact that Marcus wants to talk alone with Theodore for a little while, both of them like to spare Reginald, Marcus's ancient house-elf, when they can. "Are you joking about that?"

Marcus snorts as he sits on the couch facing the portrait of his father, who just glares at them in silence, and Theodore sits across from him. "When have you known me to be smart enough to make up a story like that?"

Theodore scowls at him, the way he often does when Marcus tells the truth, and uses his hand to swat his black hair out of his face. Marcus's gaze narrows. Harry isn't the only one wearing a new ring, although the ruby in the one on Theodore's finger is big and gaudy and frankly in bad taste.

"I've just never heard of talking obsidian before," Theodore is admitting, when Marcus's hand shoots out and grabs his wrist, turning his finger around. "Hey! Watch it!"

"Betrothal ring," Marcus grunts as he examines the silver leaves on the ring band. At least that's in slightly better taste than the ruby itself. "Who is it?"

Theodore promptly turns bright red, and while he doesn't wrestle his hand out of Marcus's grip, his fingers wriggle as if he'd like to. Marcus blinks at him, and lets Theodore's hand go. Then he slumps back on the couch with a sigh. "I thought you had better taste than that."

"What are you talking about?"

Marcus points a finger at him, which Theodore glares at him for. Marcus frankly doesn't care. He's still reeling from the discovery of what one of his best friends prefers in bed. "You're going to marry Malfoy? Are you out of your skull?"

"You married Potter!"

"Because he's attractive and powerful and I wanted him!" Marcus waves his hand. "What is attractive about Malfoy?"

"Oh, I could tell you." Theodore's eyes have a particular glint to them that Marcus recognizes from some of the pranks that he pulled at school, pranks so subtle that no one ever suspected him. "But then you probably wouldn't thank me for the images that it put in your head."

Marcus grunts, because that's true enough, and nods at the ring. "Well, at least I know you're not marrying him for his sense of taste."

"Rubies are traditional in the Malfoy family."

"Ones that large?" Marcus grins a second later when Theodore stammers his way through a denial. "Oh, he bought it to compete with the sapphire I got Harry, didn't he? I reckon he saw how big it was and puffed up like an owl and declared that you were going to have a bigger and rarer stone."

"This is why I don't understand you when you say you're stupid." Theodore rolls his eyes. "You make all these connections and have these insights that no one else does."

"Insights about Malfoy aren't that complicated." Marcus folds his arms. "Come on, tell me about why you're going to marry him."

"Finish your story about the talking obsidian first."

By the time Harry comes back with the tea, Marcus has at least managed to make Theodore understand that the obsidian didn't talk, it was a ritual that told Marcus who would be able to direct him in the future. Theodore shoots Harry an inscrutable look as Harry hands him a cup of tea and sits down on the couch next to Marcus.

"You don't order Marcus around, do you?"

"No. Neither of us orders the other one around. We tried playing some of those games, but frankly, they were boring."

Theodore chokes, and his face turns a different shade of red. Marcus shrugs and leans so his shoulder is against Harry's. He never took Theodore for the kind of prude that Granger sometimes is, but then, he never took Theodore for the kind of person to marry Malfoy, either.

"That?" Marcus nods at the ruby again.

Theodore sighs and reaches for his teacup again. "Well, it actually started after your betrothal was announced in the papers. Draco was upset about it, and he Flooed over to my house. I thought he was upset at first because he wanted to marry one or the other of you himself, but, ah, it was more complicated than that."

"He was jealous of me because I was getting married first."

Theodore sneaks Harry a sidelong glance. Marcus judges it the right kind of sidelong glance, or Theodore would be having trouble breathing because of the wand shoved into his throat. "I never knew you were insightful, Potter."

"Call me Harry," Harry says, without getting into the mess of last names. Neither of them really wanted to change theirs; Harry prizes his connection to his family, and Marcus prizes the fact that by keeping the name of Flint, he drives the relatives who want nothing to do with him mental. Besides, by switching back and forth between names, they can keep some of the people who still want to control or imprison Harry off-balance. "And I'm not, not about people, in general. Malfoy always did see himself as too much of a rival to me, though."

"I thought he got over that in the war?"

"Yes, but come the end of the war, he went back to it." Harry rolls his eyes. "He had to bump into me my first day in the Ministry, back when I was in Auror training, and show off how much more he knew about the place than I did and his fine tailored robes."

Marcus frowns. He never knew that. Schoolboy and Quidditch rivalries were one thing, but—

"No, Marcus."

Marcus sighs and lets it go. Most of the time, Harry is happy that Marcus wants to defend him, but he also has the annoying habit of deciding that some things aren't worth their time. Marcus can sometimes change his mind with sex, but not always.

"Thank you for leaving Draco alone," Theodore says, offering proof that not all his intelligence has bled out through his dick into Malfoy's pointy arse. "Anyway. I asked him what he was really upset about, and he said that he'd thought he would be betrothed by this point, with his first kid on the way."

"You mean Malfoy heir, right?"

"Yes, fine, Harry, that was the way he said it. And I told him that he should date someone because he wanted to date them, not because he just wanted to have a kid and feel that he was achieving all the right things by the right age."

Marcus studies Theodore thoughtfully. He would never have pegged his friend for one who'd say that. Oh, Theodore wants to marry someone he can get along with, definitely—he has personal experience with his parents' marriage, where that didn't happen—but he knows as well as most of the purebloods in their generation do the importance of magic and politics.

Marcus himself didn't marry for those reasons, but no one else can marry, touch, fuck, date, or attack Harry, so everyone else will just have to live with the inferior reasons.

"And?" Marcus prompts, because none of this explains how Malfoy saw the good thing right in front of him and snatched Theodore up.

Theodore coughs. "He, um, he started ranting about how he couldn't have the one person he wanted. I still thought it was Potter-Harry-and kept nodding along, and honestly, I didn't pay much attention. Until he turned around and said it was me."

"Huh." Marcus considers that. Malfoy never seemed interested in Theodore, but it's true that Marcus left Hogwarts before anyone in that year really started dating people in earnest.

"I was shocked, naturally." Theodore stretches his fingers, flaunting the ruby. From the slight snort that escapes Harry, he thinks the gesture is silly. Marcus snakes his arm around Harry's shoulder in agreement, but Theodore doesn't seem to notice. "But I snatched him right up."

"Did you want him for a long time, too?" Harry asks.

"No," Theodore says, with a drawl that Marcus looks at him about. Theodore clears his throat and continues in a less condescending voice. "No, but I know I can get along with Draco, and he values a lot of the same things I do, and he's handsome, and he's the right sort. Of course I snatched him."

"Huh," Harry says.

Unlike Marcus's, which passed unremarked, Theodore decides to bristle about Harry's "huh." "What is that supposed to mean?" he demands, leaning forwards with his eyes fastened on Harry's.

"I'm with Marcus because I love him," Harry says, shrugging. "Not because I think he has value or he's the right sort. I wonder how long your marriage will last, if you marry for something other than love."

Theodore lifts his lip a little. "Marriages last for many reasons. Do you think everyone you knew in Hogwarts married for love?"

"No, because I knew you in Hogwarts."

Theodore blinks and seems to consider that, and then gives up. Marcus smiles a little. Theodore likes to correct people and be right, but not as much as he likes getting along with Marcus. All Marcus has to do is prevent Theodore and Harry from spending too much time alone, and everything should be fine.


Which is why it's such a bloody nuisance to fall off his broom a few days later, spend a day unconscious, and wake up in St. Mungo's with Harry sitting next to his bed and Theodore hovering across the room, frigid silence between them.

Marcus sighs and flexes his hand in Harry's. "They said no brain damage? Not that you would really be able to tell."

Harry closes his eyes and tightens his grip on Marcus's hand, his only sign of how profound his relief is going to be. Marcus does brighten thinking of the relief-powered blowjob he's likely to get later.

"You know I hate it when you put yourself down like that," Harry mutters.

"But I don't have any noticeable brain damage," Marcus says. "For example, I can still tell that Theodore did something in advisable."

"Why do you assume I'm to blame, and not him?" Theodore tosses his head at Harry without looking at him, his eyes locked on Marcus.

"Because Harry's not the sort to hold a grudge, especially against someone he knows is my friend, without an excellent reason." Marcus shifts in the bed, and Harry promptly casts a spell to him sit up and adjust the pillows behind him. Marcus nods to him and smiles, then turns back to Theodore. "And you know I'll take his side, so it had to be inadvisable."

"You'll take his side?" Theodore blinks at him.

Marcus frowns and glances at Harry. "We did send the wedding announcement to him, right? And he was there to see us married? I'm not misremembering seeing him there because of my traumatic brain damage?"

Harry bites his lip while his eyes sparkle. It's a much better look on him than the worry. "Yes, he was there. Yes, we sent him the wedding announcement. And I don't see any brain damage so far." He gently touches Marcus's temple, smoothing his hand along the skin until he gets to the bump Marcus can feel, where he hesitates instead of touching.

"You can touch it," Marcus murmurs. "I trust you."

"The Healers did say the new skin is fragile." Harry pulls his hand back with a sigh.

"What does my being at your wedding have to do with you taking his side?" Theodore demands, sounding aggrieved. Marcus doesn't know what he has to complain about. If Theodore had been the one to fall from a broom, Marcus would have endured Malfoy flirting with him for at least five minutes before saying something.

"He's my husband, therefore I'm on his side," Marcus explains. Maybe being at the wedding doesn't have much to do with it. Maybe this is just a lesson Theodore didn't know and needs to learn before he gets married, in which case Marcus is doing both him and Malfoy a favor.

Theodore stares at him, then back at Harry. Harry raises his eyebrows and shrugs. "I told you," is all he says.

"It was—it was just a stupid argument," Theodore mutters. "About how you liked your pillows arranged behind your head. I said that you liked them to be almost flat, and Potter said you didn't, and we started arguing about—I said you wouldn't be in St. Mungo's if you hadn't tried to impress him by doing that stupid stunt on your broom."

"That's true," Marcus says. "I don't know why you argued about it."

"He said I shouldn't have married you," Harry says quietly. "That I probably killed you because you thought you had to do that stunt to impress me, and I should have left you alone."

Marcus sighs and wishes he could bury his head in his hands, but that would probably irritate the bump on his temple.

"You are such a stupid fuck, Theodore," he says conversationally. Theodore starts, because it's been at least six years since Marcus addressed him like that. Well, he hasn't had to until this point. "Yes, I pulled a stunt the wind was too fast for me to pull, and yes, I fell off my broom, and yes, I ended up in St. Mungo's. None of that means that I didn't want to marry Harry or that I would ever walk away from him. Why did you say shit like that?"

"I didn't know you would walk away at all!" Theodore yells, looking pale and shaken. "And this bastard just stood there and said you would wake up and I shouldn't worry so much!"

"Yes, such terrible things to say when he was trying to reassure you," Marcus says, resigned to spelling out absolutely everything.

Theodore opens his mouth and then stands there, looking foolish. Marcus shakes his head. "Make sure you can cure yourself of this tendency to assume the worst of everyone before you marry Malfoy," he says. "Otherwise you're going to drive each other mental."

"I—I was worried," Theodore mumbles.

"Which is the only reason that you're not flying through the wall right about now," Harry says, flatly and abruptly. Marcus turns to glance at him, and Harry puts a hand on his shoulder lightly enough not to aggravate the injury Marcus sustained to his arm. His eyes remain fastened on Theodore.

"I know you're Marcus's friend. I don't want to make you worry or get you upset." Harry's voice is still flat, like he's reading off a board. "But I also don't need to bow down to you or apologize for marrying Marcus because you don't like me being here and part of his life. Either accept me or take your stupid arse away."

Theodore stands there, apparently paralyzed with shock. Then he nods, and says, "I'm sorry, Potter," and at least sounds like he half means it.

"I want to be alone with my husband now," Marcus says.

Theodore winces, nods, and says, "I'm glad you're okay," before he turns and leaves the room, head bowed and feet dragging a little.

Harry glances at Marcus. "I wasn't too harsh, was I? I only wanted to make him shut up earlier when I said—"

"Can you lock the door?"

Looking baffled, Harry flicks his wand at the door. "You don't need a Healer?"

"I'm sure I had my fill of them while I was unconscious. Right now, I want my husband." Marcus pats his groin, where he's been stiff since Harry started tearing into Theodore. "Come and give me a ride. That'll prove I'm fully recovered, right?"

Harry looks a little shocked himself. "Should we? I mean, we're right in the middle of hospital…"

"Yes, I do know that. But why should we let it stop us? Unless all those words of love and devotion were just words."

Harry stares at him, and then laughs, a tension in his face Marcus didn't see melting away. "All right, you bastard. But you're the one who can explain to the Healers if they come in and yell at me for exhausting you."

As it turns out, it's more than a good ride, and Marcus is more than smiling when he curls up to sleep that night. And he's sure that eventually, Theodore and Harry will get along.

Of course, Theodore and Malfoy will never have as satisfying a sex life as Harry and Marcus do, but there's really some things you can't do for your friends.


"Master Marcus?"

Marcus looks up and smiles at Reginald. Reginald frowns back. He doesn't approve of Marcus and Harry trying to spare him pain and effort by making tea and casting Cleaning Charms and the like, and Marcus finally agreed that Reginald could clean one of the cellars. His family hasn't used it for anything in generations, and the dust in it ought to be a safe enough match for Reginald's limited magic.

Now, though, the frown and the twisting hands seem to mean something has gone wrong. Marcus sets his Quidditch magazine aside to focus fully on his house-elf. "What's wrong, Reginald?"

"There being body in the cellars."

Marcus blinks. "Huh." If nothing else, he would have assumed that any body down there when the cellars were used would have decayed completely by now. And Reginald is very precise in his language. If he meant "skeleton," he would have said "skeleton."

"There being body, Master Marcus," Reginald says, slowly and distinctly.

"Yes, I heard," Marcus says, and gets up to go and find Harry. Fun like a body in the cellar is something he probably wants to be in on.

Harry is in the study answering some correspondence from Muggleborns who have had property taken away by the Ministry. He grins up at Marcus and reaches out to run a hand down his biceps. Marcus flexes it so Harry can have some more to touch, utterly unashamed. Only the very best for his husband.

"What is it?" Harry asks.

"Body in the cellars. Want to come along?"

Harry stands up, his eyes wide. "A body? Not a skeleton?"

Marcus nods, satisfied that Harry has also appreciated this subtle distinction. "Yeah. Reginald says that he found it in that cellar I had him clean because I thought it would have dust and nothing else." He shrugs. "Maybe one of my ancestors cast a Preservation Charm on it or something."

"The body?"

"The cellar." Marcus considers it. "Well. Either. But I do think I would have found the body before now if it had always been there."

Harry snorts and shakes his head. "Only your family. Well, let's take a look at it."


They both stand in the cellar that Reginald was sent to clean, staring at the body for a long, silent moment. Marcus breaks the silence. "That looks a lot like that bastard who was here talking about your fan club."

Harry winces at the words "fan club," but nods. "I don't understand, though. We both saw him leave the house alive."

Marcus prods the body of Gawain Robards, or what at least appears to be that body, thoughtfully with his foot. "Well, I suppose this could be Transfigured. Or the one who left could have been using Polyjuice. But why would anyone want to pretend to be Robards?"

"He does hold an important position in the Ministry, you know," Harry points out. "Head Auror."

"Did hold."

"We don't know this is actually him."

Marcus shrugs agreeably. "That's true. So do we inform the Ministry? Or do we cut it up and use it as Potions ingredients?"

Harry stares at him. Marcus smiles. "I was only kidding."

"Okay, good."

"Unless you need those sorts of ingredients."

"Marcus."

Marcus sighs. He just knows that this is going to get the Ministry involved and all sorts of people he would rather never talk to again.

But he would endure a lot worse than this to protect his husband. And who knows, this might even end up in the kind of situation where Harry would actually agree to let him put someone in the dungeons. They practically already have someone there, after all.