- Draco Malfoy/Harry Potter
- Draco Malfoy Harry Potter Original Female Witch
- Slash Drama
- Harry and Classmates Post-Hogwarts
- Philosopher's Stone Chamber of Secrets Prizoner of Azkaban Goblet of Fire Order of the Phoenix Quidditch Through the Ages
Published: 04/22/2005Updated: 07/30/2008Words: 247,857Chapters: 31Hits: 79,195
- Story Summary:
- It all started with a little bet. "I bet you can't do it." "Do what?" "Seduce him." Draco Malfoy's never been one to back down from a perfectly do-able bet. But when that bet involves Harry Potter? Draco's realising that this bet isn't as cut and dry as it seems, nor as easy... AU post-war, post-Hogwarts, Harry/Draco/OC
- Chapter Summary:
- Draco and Blaise converse over love; Mikhail finds out more than he bargained for, and Daphne recieves Another Letter.
- Author's Note:
- Ah...er... Hi! I hope you're all not mad at me or anything. I know I took bloody forever to get this newest chapter out. It's not as long as I had thought it was going to be, and the next one, according to my notes, might be a bit shorter than normal as well, but I'm sure you'll enjoy them both. There's a few important little things being set up in this chapter, so I hope you all pay close attention.
Chapter XXIV - Another Letter
"Draco!" Blaise said with over-enthusiastically as he plopped down next to his friend on the couch.
"Blaise!" said Draco, with the same over-enthusiasm, his eyes wide with expectation and filled with annoyance at having his homework time rudely interrupted.
"So? Did you hear?"
"About what I gave Daphne."
"Er...yeah. You told me."
Blaise looked crestfallen. "Oh. Well, did you see her today? She looks totally paranoid!"
"Blaise...I don't think paranoia is the type of feeling you'd want to instil in the girl you're trying to woo, here."
Blaise nodded, his eyes narrowed in thought. "You're right."
Draco rolled his eyes, unnoticed. "You must really like her if you're going through all this trouble. And you're being a sneaky Slytherin about it, too."
"You don't think she'll catch on, do you?"
"I think you've scared her too much for that, mate," he replied dryly.
"Raven knows, did she tell you?"
"No, but I don't see her much lately." Draco looked back down to his parchment, hoping Blaise would leave the subject alone. He didn't.
"Really? Why not?"
"She's busy with her art, and I'm busy with my thesis."
"Are you two okay? She has seemed a little distant; minus her slapping me for trying to court Daphne."
Draco raised an eyebrow but murmured, "That's my girl."
"Hey! Your girlfriend provided bodily harm that nearly left a mark! I should sue!"
"Pfft. Please." At Blaise's glare, Draco said, "I'm sure she's sorry."
"You never answered my question, Draco."
"About you and Raven. How you're doing."
"Us? We're fine. Not really going anywhere but it's not like either of us has a great track record for relationships."
"This Harry-thing is distracting you, isn't it?"
Draco scoffed and looked to his research. "Of course not. You are."
"Draco, you're really not that great of a liar. Yes, I know this comes as a great shock."
"Hush up, Zabini. Yes, okay, Harry's been taking a lot of my mental energies. I just - fuck Mikhail Chaikovsky for being such a bloody perfect boyfriend!"
"Draco, you know that their getting together was partially your fault, right?"
"Yes, goddammit! I know. I just..." he sighed. "Sometimes I wonder why I'm still trying." Draco lowered his voice and continued, "We only had one night together - and yes, it was amazing, but how the fuck did I think it would ever work? He's Harry Potter! I'm Draco Malfoy! He needs someone like that soggy Russian; and I have a girlfriend besides. I'm just insane, that's what I am. Insane."
"You're not insane, Draco. You're in love."
"And what would you know about it?"
"Great Merlin Draco, shut-up! You sound like a whiny little girl!"
Draco glared with tremendous intensity and growled low in the back of his throat. "Yeah, well, you're making your love-interest paranoid that some crazy person is stalking her!"
"At least I can admit how I feel!"
"Behind a mask of anonymity!"
"Will you two shut up!" Nott yelled from the kitchen dining area. "It's not like your yelling doesn't affect our homework either!"
Both Draco and Blaise sat back with their arms crossed, huffy.
"Maybe we're both cowards," Blaise suggested after a moment.
Draco glanced his way. "Perhaps." He shifted in his seat. "Besides, I have told Potter how I feel."
"You just haven't told him you love him."
Draco pursed his lips. "Because I don't think he loves me. I'm not ready to take that risk."
"Maybe you have to take that risk, Draco." At Draco's non-committal shrug he added, "At least you know he likes you."
"Yeah. Hm. So - what are you going to do for Daphne next?"
"Oh, um. Another letter. I'm not sure what to give her, though. But I was wondering, what are you doing for the Hols?"
"Raven's going to spend a day or two with her parents, then she's coming over to the Manor to help me sort through things. I was going to ask Harry if he'll come too. His best friends should be on their honeymoon."
"You should have a party," Blaise suggested.
"Why? So you can invite Daphne?"
"I see right through you, Zabini. But - I'll have a party. Maybe two. One for Christmas, and one for New Years. And I'll invite Daphne; so you don't have to blow your cover. Just do something nice for her for Christmas, all right?"
"Thanks mate. Oh! That reminds me - guess who's coming to visit before Hols?"
Draco paled. "Oh no. Your mum."
"Yep. She won't give up on you, you know. She likes them rich and young."
"How? How on earth does she justify their untimely deaths? Ugh, Blaise - just keep your Black Widow of a mother away from me."
Blaise laughed. "I'll try. But she hasn't had a husband in such a long time..."
"Arabella Zabini is a witch, I tell you."
Blaise stared at his friend. "Er...yeah. She is."
Draco waved him off. "You know what I mean."
Blaise murmured his agreement. "Well, she'll only be here for a few days, and she'll be staying in the village. Then she's taking me home with her - to Italy I mean - before I come back here to hopefully party with you."
"How long will you be gone?"
"'Till after Christmas."
"Then why am I throwing two parties?"
"I don't know. Throw one. For New Years. Then I can kiss Daphne when it turns. Shame about missing the mistletoe, though."
Draco rolled his eyes. "Yes, shame I'll only have to see you snogging once."
"Oh, if things go according to plan, all you'll see of me and Daph is us snogging."
"Gross. But that really is some plan you have - not knowing what to give her next; then showering her unexpectedly with kisses. Yes. Good plan."
"Shove off, Malfoy," Blaise snapped affectionately.
"You first. You were the one interrupting my research."
"Yes, yes ,yes. I'll leave you to it, then." Blaise got up and moved towards the stairs.
"Ta, you silly wanker."
"Watch your insults, wannabe shirt-lifter."
Draco looked scandalised, but only for a moment. "Well, no Christmas present for you this year."
"Ooh, really? You were gonna get me a present?"
"Not any more."
Blaise bounded back to the sofa, leaning over it into Draco's personal space. The Italian certainly had no propriety regarding personal boundaries.
"Tell me! Please."
"What? I didn't get you anything. It's October."
"But will you? Please say you will. Please."
"Talk about sounding like a girl..." Draco muttered. Then he sniffed. "I'll think about it. But you've hurt my feelings. I don't want to be a shirt-lifter. I just like Harry. Only Harry."
Blaise pouted. "Oh fine. You're... Harry-sexual then."
"Harry-sexual...hmm. That sounds alright. Okay! Now that that's taken care of - vanish, please. You've distracted me for nearly an hour."
"My apologies. I'll catch you later."
Mikhail had wanted to walk Harry home, but his boyfriend was taking longer than usual in the locker room (which was still a rather long time), and the sun was nearly set.
The deep darkness from the forest around the pitch loomed and grew, and he fidgeted with nervousness over nothing in particular.
He thought he loved Harry, that he was starting to love Harry, but things between them were obviously not so great. Not that Mikhail gave up so easily. Mikhail fought every minute with himself about his enmity with Malfoy versus his feelings for Harry. Some part of him was horrified at the thought that he could think so lowly of Harry - think that Harry would cheat on him so quickly, that perhaps there was more to his and Malfoy's relationship than met the eye - but some small facts were staring him in the face. Harry and Malfoy must be hiding something. Mikhail didn't want to think what that something was, however.
Grimacing at the on-setting headache, Mikhail turned and went back inside, where a heavy mist hung in the air after the showers his team had taken. One stall was still running and Mikhail spotted Harry's Quidditch things on one of the benches, a pile of rumpled clothing with Harry's Firebolt leaning against it; his worn leather boots limp on the floor.
Mikhail had maybe always wondered just why his team mate took his showers so late. Even more so after Harry finally felt comfortable enough to come back to the shower room; getting over his shyness around the other men and his boyfriend. Perhaps living in the dorm didn't help promote a healthy wanking lifestyle? Mikhail rolled his eyes at his own stupidity. Harry had his own room, so it couldn't be that. And it's not like Harry was horribly disfigured - that, Mikhail could personally attest to - so perhaps he just didn't like being naked in front of other guys? But then wouldn't he have just gone home from the start? Or wait - maybe Harry lied to him about when he first realised he liked guys. Maybe he was so startled when you kissed him because he thought you found out his secret...
And maybe you're just paranoid.
Probably. That last thought was ludicrous.
Setting his things down next to Harry's, Mikhail crept towards the showering area, being careful to avoid large puddles. He didn't want to spy on Harry in the shower, per se; he just wanted to make sure he was okay. He'd been in there for so long...
Mikhail had barely avoided slipping when he realised he'd reached the last stall and looked up to see Harry's naked back; pearly-white scars crisscrossing in short bursts across the shower-pink skin.
The Quidditch Captain swallowed hard. His mouth had gone dry at the sight of his boyfriend's blemished back. He watched silently as the obviously very hot water sluiced down Harry's neck and shoulders, welling in the curve above his buttocks before falling down into the crevasse between them.
Watching his boyfriend just stand there, his arms braced against the back wall, aroused Mikhail as much as seeing the scars laced on Harry's skin horrified him. How come I didn't notice? Did I notice? Mikhail thought back to the morning after he'd stayed at Harry's. He thought he might have seen some scars...but where did they come from? Why wouldn't Harry talk about things like that with him?
He was jolted from his horrified staring by Harry moving his arms down from the wall and turning around. Mikhail started; afraid of being caught; but Harry's eyes remained closed. He watched as Harry pushed his hair out of his face and sighed, leaning back through the spray to the wall. Harry's hands roamed over his chest and stomach, tracing lazy patterns over the wet skin. Mikhail couldn't stop himself from looking lower and noticing Harry's arousal...and the large angry scar reaching from his navel to his hip, brushing past his upper groin.
How the hell did I miss that? Mikhail thought. There's no way I could have not seen that when I was down there...
Mikhail couldn't believe his eyes and ears when Harry took a hold of himself and started stroking languidly, breathing slow panting breaths and moaning Mikhail's name. Sharp desire shot straight to Mikhail's groin and he covered his mouth to stifle a moan in return. He continued to stand there, long after all his other instincts were telling him that he should leave, watching with rapt attention as Harry touched himself. Harry whimpered and panted, a frustrated cry of 'Malfoy' escaping then too-pink lips, and Mikhail forgot to feel hurt as he watched Harry snarl and turn very suddenly to punch the tile wall at his side, hitting his forehead just as hard afterwards. There was blood, and sadly, Mikhail watched Harry crack open red eyes and look at the split skin of his hand, his eyes appearing dead. His tongue darted out to catch a drop of blood before whispering a healing charm.
Luckily for Mikhail, Harry didn't notice him and only turned around to turn off the water. Mikhail took the chance and sprung into action; stepping quickly around the puddles and ducking down into the locker room, sitting where his stuff lay.
"Hello? Is someone there?" he heard Harry's voice call.
"It's just me, Harry," he managed to get out past the cottony feeling in his throat. "Just waiting for you."
Harry emerged from the steam with a towel around his waist, carrying his dirty Quidditch trousers. "Oh," he said with a small smile, "That's sweet of you."
Mikhail smiled slightly back, trying to erase the images and accusations from his mind. "I try, I guess."
Harry leaned down and kissed him slowly on the cheek. "So, any particular reason you stayed behind?"
Mikhail's brow crinkled in thought. "I thought maybe I could walk you home and we could talk."
"About what?" Harry asked, taking his clean clothes out from his bag and shoving the dirty ones inside.
"I can't remember, actually," Mikhail said truthfully. "The sight of you drew all thoughts from my mind." And put new ones in its place...
Harry flushed, pulling his shirt over his head. "I didn't realise I was so striking..."
Though Mikhail's thoughts were serious, he couldn't help but smile softly at Harry's own self-depreciation; giving him the opportunity to boost Harry's confidence. "You are."
Harry's blush grew and he replied, "You know, sometimes it's still a little odd when you look at me like that; because I still see my Captain, and I wonder if you've always looked at me like that, and I just never noticed."
Mikhail felt his heart leap in a strange way, and knew he was falling again. He couldn't help it; so much of him wanted Harry forever that all other thoughts and feelings were pale in comparison.
Merlin, I'm falling in love with Harry Potter. How could this happen in so sort a time? It feels like yesterday he asked me to be his boyfriend, but also like we've been together forever.
But there's still so much I don't know about him.
"Mikhail? Are you okay?"
The Russian blinked. "Oh...yeah," he smiled. "Just thinking about you."
Harry rolled his eyes. "Gah. You are so soggy."
Mikhail stood then and held Harry from behind, crossing his arms over Harry's chest. "I am. But I can't help it." Then he kissed Harry on the neck and grabbed his bag. "I'll meet you outside so I can walk you home."
Mikhail left Harry then, his mind so full it was empty. He forced himself not to think about Harry's wank, and oh God, all the scars... Just Leave it be, he told himself. Just leave it be.
Draco couldn't be sure why, but something about the presence of the woman in his arms was bugging him.
Perhaps it was just because what he really wanted was for Harry to be in his arms. He really couldn't understand how he felt so intensely for the black-haired brat. They only had one night together... But Draco loved him, didn't he?
And he loved Raven, didn't he?
Okay, so having Raven over that evening wasn't a bad or unpleasant thing at all. In fact, he'd hardly seen her at all in the past week, the last time being Saturday, after the game. And that was only two days ago. So perhaps that wasn't so long ago, but it sure felt like he hadn't seen her in ages.
She had come over after dinner, and Draco took her up to his room and pulled her onto his bed and into his arms, and they had been lying there, just like that, for an hour or so now, chatting idly, and kissing languidly, sweetly, when the urge took them. It was nice. Really nice, actually. He felt perfectly content to just lie there.
So maybe that was the problem? He felt like he should want more, when right now, he didn't? Was loving Harry putting him off women?
Raven, sensing something upsetting in Draco's thoughts raised herself up on one arm. "Draco, sweetie, are you alright? You seem...well, like something's bothering you."
Draco frowned but shook his head. "No, I'm alright, I guess. Just...mentally exhausted I think, from all that's been going on lately."
"Do you need me to take your mind off of things?" she asked, smirking and trailing her fingers through his hair.
Draco smiled. "No, that's alright. I actually wanted to talk to you about Winter Hols."
"Oh? What about them?"
"Well...I wanted to confirm our plans. Were you still going to spend a few days with your parents?"
Raven rolled her eyes. "Yes. Since we're all 'getting along better now', they'd like me to be there for Christmas. But that leaves you alone, and I don't want that."
Draco shrugged. "It's okay. I'm only going to be at the Manor going through things."
"Draco Malfoy, it is not okay! You should have someone over. Like Harry. He's not going anywhere, is he? And aren't his friends going to be on their honeymoon?"
"Yes, but he'll probably still spend the Hols with the Weasleys. They're like his family, or so I hear."
"There's no harm in asking."
"I was thinking I might, anyhow."
Raven nodded. "I'll be back on December 26th."
"I'm planning on having a New Years Party. Mostly for Blaise's benefit. He wants to see Daphne."
Raven smiled and lay back down in the crook of Draco's arm. "I hope he doesn't frighten her into delusional paranoia before then."
"Yes, he told me he was going to send another letter."
"Oh, great. She's going to think all sorts of crazy things now, and she already thinks he's some sort of mad man."
"Yeah, I know. I tried to tell him that, but I think he's set on his path. I'm pretty positive he has no idea what he's doing. He's never honestly pursued someone before, and now he's making it like one of his seduction games...but sappier." Draco made a face Raven couldn't see. Strangely, she made the same face.
"Do you think we should help him?"
Draco grinned. "Nah. I'm actually quite amused by the whole situation."
"But back to your holiday plans. You can't spend Christmas alone, Draco. It's just not on."
"I know. But I really don't think your parents would appreciate seeing me, and Blaise is off to Italy. Which reminds me, his crazy mother is going to be in town for a few days."
Raven hugged Draco close. "Don't worry, love. I won't let her get you."
Draco held her back. "She's just...ugh. I don't know. It's not like she's not fit or anything, but she's Blaise's mum! And she's had how many husbands now? I just don't get it."
"We'll keep you hidden. She'll never know you were here."
Draco laughed. "No, that's alright. I'll just...point her in someone else's direction or something."
Raven smiled but said, "You changed the subject again, Drake."
Draco rolled his eyes. "Yes, I know. I was hoping you wouldn't have noticed."
"Fat chance of that."
"I realise that now."
Raven sat up fully and looked down into her boyfriend's resistant gaze. "Seriously, Draco, what are you going to do? I'm more than willing-"
"No, you are not blowing off your parents, and no, I'm not going with you. I'll be fine. Look, I'll ask Harry, okay? And if that doesn't work out...I'll hang myself from the balustrade."
Glaring, Raven said, "That's not funny, Draco."
Draco put his hands on her arms. "I'll be fine, love. I promise."
"No, that's it. I'm writing my parents right now. They'll be joining us for Christmas." She moved to get off the bed, but Draco stopped her.
"Raven, the Manor will be in no shape to have guests by that time. I mean...not guests like your parents. I'd want to impress them, and having them come to a dust-filled house that hasn't been lived in for several years is not the way to go about it."
"Don't you have house-elves?"
"A few, but even they haven't been there for a while. I sent them to Hogwarts for the time being."
Raven sighed. "Then how about this; I spend the first few days with my parents, then Christmas eve with you, and then we both go over to my parents for Christmas. One day. That's all. And I can help you with cleaning and getting things in order after that."
Draco conceded. "Okay, fine. But let me ask Harry first."
Raven nodded. "Alright then."
Once they'd settled down again, Draco ventured, "So, Raven...if I'm finally meeting your parents in a context other than that of their accusations of my luring you into the Dark Side, where are we going? Am I your boyfriend? Your friend? Lover? Fiancé?"
"Well, Draco...which do you want to be? We could tell them of our intention to marry, or merely keep it at a plutonic level, to avoid all sorts of questions and possible immediate legal proceedings and preparations."
"Meaning, if we only reveal that we're dating, Father will ask about your future intentions. If we reveal that we've thought about marriage, my parents will want to know why it wasn't approached in a formal manner, and when the date is. If we try to act like friends, they'll see straight through us. Lover is out of the question. They'd kick you out on your arse."
"Well, wouldn't the less-abrasive option be to say we're dating? I have no problem saying that I am interested in settling down, but wanted to wait until after graduation before I proposed anything."
"That could work."
"Is that where we're headed, though, Raven? Do we still want to get married?"
There was a long pause before Raven said quietly, "Are you...do you not want to?"
Draco sighed. "I do. I can't think of marrying anyone else. But I... You know that right now I'm caught up in this thing with Harry, and I don't... I can't let him go. I need to have him. I'm just not sure where that leaves us."
"It leaves us in the same place, I think, Draco. We could stay with Harry as long as he chooses, if he ever chose to. Or you could be with him, for however long he'll stay with you. I'm okay with that. In the here and now, I'd like you both, but if that doesn't happen, that's okay. I'll still marry you, if you'd like an heir."
"What? That's not what this is about, Raven. Of course I want an heir, but that's not why I'd marry you. I'd marry you because I love you. Because I want you in my life, in my bed, in my house. What exactly do you want?"
"I want you to be happy. I want Harry to be happy."
"You don't want to be happy too?"
"That will make me happy."
Draco pursed his lips, feeling frustrated. "You don't want to marry me." It wasn't a question.
"Draco, I'll want what you want. And right now, at this very moment, you want Harry. I bet you wish he was here, lying with you, rather than me."
"It is," she said, cutting him off. "You want Harry, and I'm willing to do anything to get you what you want."
Draco paused for a moment. It sounded like... "Raven, are you saying you'll break up with me, so Harry will think he needs to come back to me? That he can, now that you're out of the picture?"
"What? Of course not."
Draco was feeling extremely put-out. This wasn't making any sense. Raven wasn't telling him something, he was sure of it.
"Raven, tell me the truth."
"I am. I still want to be with you. I just want Harry to be with you too."
"But what about you? What about those things you said about not wanting him as much as you had? But you still want him? I mean...how could you just let me be with him, knowing how I feel about him? How do you know I'll come back to you?"
Draco couldn't see it, but Raven's gaze became distant and knowing. "Don't worry about me. I'll be fine."
And that seemed to be the end of the conversation.
Raven entered her room with the full intention of passing out on her bed. It had been a long Friday, and was not particularly keen on letting it drag out any longer. She'd been bitchy, irritable and completely out of it for most of the day. Not getting any sleep could do that to a person.
But apparently, her day wasn't over yet.
"I got another one, Raven! The creepy stalker-guy sent me another letter!" Daphne cried from bed, holding the parchment out for Raven to read.
Raven blinked. Couldn't a girl skip dinner and just go to bed? "Okay, hand it here. Did it come with anything?"
"Yes, this...well, sort of nice-looking statue." Daphne gestured to the small marble statue on the nightstand. It was of a girl, her arms outstretched, and her legs in motion as if she was running. It looked as though a tree had ensnared her, though, and was growing around her - her limbs becoming the trunk and branches, and her hair the leaves. Raven looked down at the newest letter from Blaise.
Friday, 7 November, 2003
Dearest Daphne -
As I tried to think of what I could gift you with this evening, I came across a book of name etymology. After finding your name, I realised that there was Ancient Greek myth involving a woman named Daphne, which means "laurel" in Greek.
You see, the God Apollo incurred the wrath of Eros, son of Aphrodite. And because of this, Eros shot Apollo with an arrow to excite love, and the nymph Daphne, one to repel it. Apollo chased after his first love, but she would have nothing to do with him. In desperation, to rid her of Apollo's lusts, she cried out to her father, the River God Peneus, and he transformed her into a tree. A laurel tree.
So I found a picture of a statue of Daphne transforming, and replicated it for you. You have the beauty of a tree, everlasting and strong.
I do hope this story does not deter you from seeking me out. I am not the God Apollo. I wish to be with you, yes, but will walk away if you do not wish it.
Give me a chance. A chance to reveal, slowly, who I am. A chance for you to realise who I am. A chance is all I ask.
You shall hear from me soon.
Again, it went unsigned.
Raven looked up at Daphne, who was looking at the statue, but not touching it.
"Who is it, Raven? How does he keep getting into our room?"
"Concealment spells?" she replied. "Maybe he lives on campus."
"Is this...scaring you, Daph? Maybe you should really try to find out who it is. It might make you feel better."
"I'm not sure if I'm scared or not, Raven. I think maybe I should be, but..."
Raven waited patiently for her to finish.
"He seems kinda...sweet."
"Behind the creepy stalker thing, you mean?"
Daphne smiled. "Yeah. It is a pretty statue, though, isn't it?"
Raven moved over for a closer look. "Yes, it's quite beautiful."
"I was afraid it might be a portkey. But I checked. It's clean."
"He's trying to show you that you can trust him."
Daphne cocked an eyebrow. "You sound like you might know who it is."
Raven handed back the letter. "No, sorry. I have no idea."
"Oh, did Draco tell you? He's going to have a New Years party. Practically everyone we know is invited."
"Oh, yes, he told me," Raven said, flopping back onto her bed in exhaustion.
"Are you okay?"
"Just really tired. Dreams are keeping me up. And today was a shitty day."
"I'm sorry to hear that. Do you want me to bring you up dinner?"
Raven yawned, pulling off her boots and snuggling into her duvet, not bothering with removing her clothes. "No, that's okay. I'm just gonna go to bed early."
"Alright. Sleep well." Daphne moved towards the door of the room.
"Don't worry about this guy, whoever he is, okay, Daph? I'm sure it'll all be fine."
Daphne turned and smiled grimly. "I'm sure it will be. It's just quite creepy. And now I've got to piece together my own clues," she said, and left.
Oh, Blaise... Why couldn't you have just told her point blank and be done with it?
A/N: Well, I don't have much to say, other than I hope you enjoyed it and I hope to hear from you soon! If you want more updates on how the story is going, my life and all that other shaz, please sign up for my mailing list (only from me, no spam!), which is on my website. I tend to do more in-depth stuff on my LiveJournal, which is also linked on my site. Please feel free to friend me, and I will friend you. But if you want up-to-date information on my stories and if you want to know when they're ready to read before anyone else, the best place to be is on my mailing list. I'm plugging shamelessly here, can't you tell? Oh, and if you already didn't know, I've been writing another MUCH shorter story for a fic challenge called "Original Sinn", which is also on my website and I'm starting to post here and on Fanfiction as well. Check it out, if you haven't already and tell me what you think! Love you all - Aki