[identity profile] next-mas-mods.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] nextgen_mas
Title: Erised
Author : [livejournal.com profile] charmed310
Prompt Number: 33
Rating: PG
Pairing/characters: Harry Potter/Scorpius Malfoy
Warnings/content: Highlight to read *An addled Mirror of Erised. Pre-slash.*
Word Count: 3K
Summary: Men have wasted away before it, entranced by what they have seen, or been driven mad, not knowing if what it shows is real or even possible.
Notes: As easy as this prompt appeared, it turned out not to be as easy to write and is used probably in a very different way to the original intention. That being said, this was an interesting turn in writing for me, and I hope it is enjoyable.
Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to JK Rowling. All works posted at this community were created entirely for fun without making any profit. No copyright infringement is intended.




Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ Ϟ

‘Harry, it’s time to come back now.’

‘Why?’ Harry asked softly. ‘Everyone is here. They’re all here with me.’

‘They aren’t there Harry.’ Scorpius reached out and placed a hand firmly on Harry’s arm. ‘You have to stop looking.’

‘So lonely. I want to be with them.’

‘They’re not ready for you yet. Fight this, Harry. Come back to me.’


Ϟ

It was four days to Christmas and Harry Potter should have been leaving the office to catch a Portkey to Germany to see his family. Instead, he sat at his desk staring at the object before him. It stood there innocently, covered in a large stained sheet, as tall as his ceiling, just waiting to be revealed.

He flicked his wand at the door to his office and watched the deadbolt slip briskly into place. It would not do for one of his assistants to walk in on him now. Taking a deep, calming breath, he turned his wand to the article and the sheet slithered to the floor displaying the huge mirror with several cracks across the face, the wood of the frame charred and blackened.

Erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wohsi

Harry could remember the first time he saw those words. It had been Christmas then too.

The current Headmaster at Hogwarts had happened upon the old and damaged Mirror of Erised and shipped it off to the Ministry of Magic to ‘deal with’ as several staff members had been quite unable to handle the visions they were presented with upon looking into the broken Mirror. The Headmaster hadn’t been very clear on what those images were.

All the Ministry staff had been cautioned not to look into the Mirror alone as it could not show two different desires at the same time and would therefore be safer to examine. Upon its arrival, Harry asked for special permission from the Minister to have a look at it himself.

‘I’ve had experience with it,’ he’d said when asked why he should be given priority over the Department of Mysteries.

The very next morning the Mirror was there, enigmatic and silent, a certain darkness surrounding it. He supposed even the Unspeakables were afraid of it.

It had taken him two days to uncover it. Harry thought knew what he would see in the Mirror when he looked in. When Professor Dumbledore had given him due warning so many years ago not to allow himself to be overtaken by the Mirror’s power, Harry had honestly thought he’d never see the Mirror again after that year. There was no telling what had happened to it and how its powers could have changed.

Taking a less than fortifying deep breath in the stuffy office air, Harry approached the Mirror. The last time, he could immediately see the group of his family who appeared to be standing behind him. This time he could see only his reflection like a regular mirror. He waited.

Nothing happened.

Disappointed and slightly ashamed of himself for being so apprehensive (he was an Auror for God’s sake) Harry turned to leave.

‘Harry, is that you?’

‘Sirius!’

‘Harry, how are you? Let me look at you. You’ve grown so much!’

Harry couldn’t believe his eyes -- or ears; he’d never known images in the Mirror to speak before.

‘How is this happening?’

Sirius merely smiled. Taking a closer look, Harry realised that he looked older than Sirius now. Harry frowned, closing his eyes against the image of Sirius. He felt confused. Foggy.

At that moment, Lily and James appeared next to Sirius, and Harry stopped questioning.

‘Mum.’

‘Sweetheart, you’ve grown.’

Harry smiled. ‘I wish you could see your grandchildren. I called my daughter Lily.’

His mother smiled back and Harry felt himself slipping away from the room he was in. He was seeing himself with them as though they were as solid and real as the ground beneath him. He couldn’t fight the feeling that something was wrong; his senses were telling him to get out of there, to break the Mirror and go, but the sight of his mother’s face was too much for him. He had been so lonely with the children gone, and Ginny had long since stopped visiting him at home after she’d taken up with her new boyfriend. There was a man in Harry’s life, but he was too young and fresh to be saddled with an old dog like him. Harry wouldn’t become a bother.

‘Harry, I know you’ll be going off and getting married soon, and leaving your old godfather to look after the kids, but do come and spend the holidays at Grimmauld Place. It’s very quiet when you’re not around. And be sure to invite your friends. Those twins always give me a laugh.’

The twins? But Fred… Fred was gone. Sirius was gone, too. Harry didn’t understand. Why was Sirius talking to him like this?

Before Harry could voice his question, James spoke. ‘Did you get your Christmas present, Harry? The newest Firebolt model! I don’t think the English team has had a chance to fly them yet!’

Just like that, Harry was off and talking to his father and Sirius about Quidditch. It was as though something inside him had clicked into place. This was normal. This is what he should have had all his life. This was how he interacted with his own children, so what could be wrong with a simple conversation with his family?

Soon, they had all come to him. Remus, Tonks, even Fred. They were all there with him, and they were all together.

Harry made himself more comfortable. He had dragged his desk chair close to the Mirror and had enjoyed time with his family. It had been extremely peculiar to note, however, how very old he was looking in comparison to his loved ones. He propped his feet up on the Mirror as he told his mother about her grandchildren, enjoying her laughter.

In an instant the Mirror showed nothing but his reflection. He must have loosened some part of the Mirror with his feet and stopped the flow of magic. In the moment before he moved his legs he could clearly see his reflection. He looked grey and exhausted. His face appeared very dark; this five o’clock shadow was much later than that. How long had he spent there?

Looking at his watch, he saw that it was nearly four in the morning. He absolutely had to go home.

I’ll be back tomorrow,’ he said. He frowned as an odd chill seemed to creep into him, similar to how a dementor made him feel. His mind however, was full of his family. Nothing could touch him with that power.

As he closed the door, his mother’s voice whispered, ‘We’ll be waiting.’


Ϟ

It was Christmas Eve, which marked Scorpius Malfoy’s last day of work at the hospital before the holidays. Though he absolutely loved his job, he was looking forward to a break.

Of all his rotations as an intern at St Mungo’s Hospital, Brain Healing had been the most interesting and he knew from the first day where he would specialise. He’d spent hours and hours poring over patient case files, absorbing hundreds of MagiScan images of brains in health and illness. He simply loved the brain.

At twenty-four years old, Scorpius felt that he had finally reached. He had his own apartment (albeit miniature compared to the manor house he had grown up in with his family), he had a well-paying job, and had mercifully completed payment on his education (largely helped by his father who had kindly looked the other way when Scorpius presented him with a loan payment plan).

Popping two of his favourite peppermint humbugs into his mouth to start the day, Scorpius held his head high as he entered the hospital, proud to be wearing his lime green robes and official St Mungo’s nametag. He climbed the rickety old steps, smiling and waving at his colleagues, until he got to the fourth floor where he was currently working under Healer Lambkin, one of the best Brain Healers in the country.

‘Morning Malfoy,’ said Healer Lambkin. ‘Hope you’re well-rested and, as the Muggles are fond of saying, eaten your Wheaties this morning! I’ve got a case and a half for you.’

‘I did have a good breakfast, yes, sir.’ Scorpius wasn’t particularly fond of Muggle sayings.

Chuckling, Lambkin handed Scorpius a red file. Red meant the Ministry of Magic. How exciting! He flipped open to the first page and felt the excitement drain out of him.

Head Auror Harry Potter presenting with severe delusions and significant malnourishment following a three day stint in front of magical mirror. Psychological consult required. Patient is refusing to be moved.

‘We’ll be leaving for the Ministry in ten minutes,’ Lambkin said brightly.

It took enormous self-control not to slap the man across the face. He wouldn’t allow himself to be fired today even though this case was special.

He’d been an intern the first time they’d properly met. Harry was accompanying a fellow Auror who had been injured on the job with a very nasty curse that was literally drying him up of blood, eliminating the circulatory system artery by artery ending with the heart.

Scorpius hated the Casualty Ward; full of the bleeding and the dying, punctuated by screaming and mourning. Scorpius’ attending Healer had asked him to monitor the wounded Auror’s vitals while they performed the necessary spells to regrow the wizard’s spleen and most of his aorta.

Harry paced past the room, peering inside every three seconds, until one of the Healers barked at Scorpius to tell him to bugger off.

‘Mr Potter, we’re doing all we can and the spell is being reversed,’ Scorpius said when Harry demanded what was going on. It was quite something to be reassuring the man who once took down the most powerful force of evil. To hear his dad tell it was like listening to a fairy tale, though he’d heard that Harry and his dad never got on.

Harry gazed at him for a few moments. ‘You went to school with Albus didn’t you? You’re Malfoy’s boy.’ He smiled and Scorpius took notice of how friendly his face could be. ‘Well, hardly a boy now. Glad to see you’re doing something useful with your life. Mine have started a band.’

Scorpius had heard them play in a club over the last holiday. They were very good and probably on their way to global success in a few years, and Scorpius told Harry so.

‘Good of you. Still, I’m glad they’re not in there.’

‘He’ll be all right, Mr Potter.’

‘Please call me Harry. Mr Potter is only reserved for people I loathe.’

Scorpius glanced into the theatre. The Healers didn’t really seem to need him there anyway.

‘Harry, would you like to come upstairs for a coffee with me? They’ll contact me when the procedures are finished.’

Harry smiled gratefully. ‘Yeah, thanks.’

While sipping his coffee, Harry confessed to Scorpius that it had been partly his fault that that Auror, Bobby Henson, had been injured.

‘I just wasn’t paying attention to the signs. I’ve been sidetracked with my divorce,’ he said, gazing into the depths of his paper cup. ‘She’s not made it easy on me or the kids. It’s hardly an excuse, but maybe I shouldn’t have been out there at all.’

‘I’m sure you’re doing the best you can. You shouldn’t feel bad, that curse is hard to deflect at the best of times. It must have taken some quick work to bring him here in time.’

Harry smiled. ‘Thank you.’

When the Healer-in-charge paged Scorpius an hour later, he had to admit he was quite sorry to end the conversation. He might have imagined it, but Harry seemed to be flirting with him a little.

‘You’re a good kid, Scorpius. Maybe when all my woes have passed we should have dinner,’ Harry said.

Definitely flirting.

‘I’d like that.’

Harry had made good on his dinner date, and the two men had struck up and unusual yet very special relationship. Harry had taken to visiting Scorpius in the hospital during lunchtimes, and though they were yet to kiss, or even hold hands, Scorpius could feel a pleasant tension building when they met.

He knew Harry was very lonely without James, Albus and Lily, and he hoped he could help fill the void, and maybe add something extra to the older man’s life.

Scorpius gripped Harry’s red file very tightly. He didn’t know much about magical mirrors, except the fabled Mirror of Erised which, according to Hogwarts, A History was said to be hidden at the castle, but hadn’t been seen since the early 1990s. He did know a thing or two about treating delusions, however, and he hoped Harry wasn’t too far gone to accept him.

It was eerie to see Harry sitting like a small child in front of the great mirror and speaking to people who were definitely not there. He was muttering words like ‘Mum’ and ‘Sirius’ and ‘Dad’, and laughing at random intervals, but Scorpius couldn’t make any sense of what Harry was saying.

Several witches and wizards were walking around the back of the Mirror, taking notes and tapping it with their wands, each wearing a look of baffled curiosity. There were five Aurors standing guard around Harry, while the Healer who had accompanied Scorpius and Healer Lambkin began administering fluids to Harry. The Minister was speaking with Healer Lambkin in a low voice.

Scorpius approached Harry and was struck by the majesty that was the Mirror of Erised. He’d had no idea it was real. He began to take notes on his physical condition and awareness. Harry looked terrible: thin, grey and pasty. He didn’t seem to know that there were other people around him, conversing only with the people in the Mirror.

‘Why are there Aurors keeping guard?’ Scorpius asked Matthew, the Healer who was rehydrating Harry.

‘He turns his wand on anyone who tried to move him, or the Mirror. Six assistants have had to be patched up already. He’s crazy and powerful, not a good mix.’

Scorpius frowned. ‘He’s not crazy.’

Matthew snorted. ‘If you say so.’

‘Harry, can you hear me?’ Scorpius said clearly.

Harry’s eyes flickered and he murmured. ‘He’s here, Mum.’

The other Healer looked at Scorpius questioningly, but moved away so that he could begin his consultation in peace.

‘Harry, do you know where you are?’

‘With them,’ Harry said with a faint smile.

Scorpius’ heart sank. Maybe he was crazy.

‘Malfoy, what’s going on?’ boomed Lambkin. He and Minister Shacklebolt had made their way over.

‘He’s responsive,’ said Scorpius. ‘Has anyone figured out what’s caused this effect?’

The Minister replied, ‘Though we cannot be certain as Harry hasn’t allowed anyone to move him, the Unspeakables believe that the Mirror’s magic has been warped, likely from the damage it sustained in the Fiendfyre at Hogwarts. They think that in addition to showing the subject their deepest desires, there is a binding power, and a, forgive me, befuddling quality to the object. This confusion appears to increase over time according to the testimonies given by the teachers who had been affected by the Mirror when it was found at Hogwarts. The Headmaster was able to remove his teachers from the Mirror, but Harry seems to be a very special case.’

Minister Shacklebolt looked sadly down at Harry. ‘He was here alone with it. I never should have let him be here alone. His past haunts him in the present.’

‘He spoke to them about me, whomever he’s seeing. I think it’s his parents and someone called Sirius. He said, ‘He’s here, Mum’.’

Kingsley exchanged a look with Lambkin.

Scorpius cleared his throat. ‘We’ve sort of been seeing each other for some months now. Maybe he’s responding to that.’

‘Ah. Well, please continue. All we need is for him to stop trying to kill us so we can move the Mirror.’

‘I’ll try my best, Sir.’

‘Do. Harry is like a son to me, and very special to our community.’

‘Of course.’

As the witches and wizards cleared the room on Minister Shacklebolt’s orders, Scorpius stood behind Harry, afraid to touch him, but wanting to be close enough for Harry to notice. He looked intently at Harry’s reflection in the Mirror. He was far, but Scorpius could see it in his eyes that he was uncertain of why he was there.

‘Harry, it’s time to come back now.’

‘Why?’ Harry asked softly. ‘Everyone is here. They’re all here with me.’

‘They aren’t there Harry.’ Scorpius reached out and placed a hand firmly on Harry’s arm. ‘You have to stop looking.’

‘So lonely. I want to be with them.’

‘They’re not ready for you yet. Fight this, Harry. Come back to me.’

Ϟ

The images of his family were becoming distorted and he couldn’t hear them as well as he had been before. It was like trying to watch a badly tuned radio station. He was reminded once again of how dementors had affected him when he was a boy. He could sense many people moving around him, but couldn’t see them. Just Lily was with him now. She was so young, and he was so old. Again, he questioned whether or not this was right to be here.

A voice struck him out of the mutterings and mumbling around him. A new voice, a warm voice; one he had grown to associate with deepening affection for the owner. Pale skin and blue eyes, and a smell of peppermint. Yes. He knew someone who was fond of peppermints.

He cocked his head to the side, listening to the man speak to him. He gazed at his mother’s face again, and she was smiling her beautiful smile.

‘I think I’ve got to go, Mum,’ he said.

‘I only got to spend one Christmas with you, love. You were just learning to sit up. Spend this one last Christmas with us. Please.’

’Harry, please come back.

Harry squeezed his eyes shut. The two voices were confusing him. Lily was telling him about his first Christmas, how everyone had come to see him, and brought the most beautiful gifts.

The other voice, that of the young man he knew was special to him was in his ear, much louder, and he could feel pressure on his arm, smell the peppermint and feel the warmth of another person behind him. He reached out to touch his mother’s face, to know that she was real.

Glass. Cold hard class met his fingers and he knew.

‘I love you, Mum, but I have to go now. I’ll see you again one day.’

Tears stung his eyes and he closed them shut against her. It wasn’t real. She wasn’t real. They weren’t real.

He leaned back into the warm body behind him - he knew now who it belonged to - a shuddering sob wracking his body, afraid to open his eyes and be stuck in his past.

‘Harry, I need you to look at me.’

Harry turned to Scorpius and their eyes locked.

Relief swept over him. The images were clear now. Scorpius was there, holding him. Alive and warm. Real.

Finally, he could see his future.

Date: 2012-12-04 12:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mrs-jack-turner.livejournal.com
Mirror of Erised fics always have the potential to be heartbreaking, and this one certainly hits the mark. Glad that Scorpius managed to get through to Harry in the end though :)

Date: 2012-12-17 02:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] charmed310.livejournal.com
Thank you!

Date: 2012-12-04 03:25 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-12-17 02:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] charmed310.livejournal.com
Thank you :)

Date: 2012-12-04 06:03 pm (UTC)
nerakrose: ohh a bookstore (ohh a bookstore)
From: [personal profile] nerakrose
Oh wow, this was really breathtaking, in a heartbreaking sort of way. I'm glad Scorpius was able to pull Harry back, that was no mean feat. I had my doubts that he'd be able to. :)

Date: 2012-12-17 02:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] charmed310.livejournal.com
Thanks so much!

Date: 2012-12-04 06:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] susannah-wilde.livejournal.com
With Harry caught between the two worlds, I am glad that Scorpius was able to bring him back, even if the choice was difficult for Harry . Great job!

Date: 2012-12-17 02:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] charmed310.livejournal.com
Thank you!

Date: 2012-12-07 06:15 pm (UTC)
kitty_fic: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kitty_fic
This was heartbreaking and beautiful with such a lovely happy, hopeful ending!

Such an interesting twist that the fiendfyre damaged the mirror.

Date: 2012-12-17 02:06 am (UTC)

Date: 2012-12-07 08:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] secretsolitaire.livejournal.com
Oh, Harry. *sniff*

Date: 2012-12-17 02:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] charmed310.livejournal.com
Yup...

Thanks :)

I apologise for my lateness.

Date: 2012-12-21 06:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wemyss.livejournal.com
I had thought I'd a day left before reveals. Well, better late than never: This is super. And thought-provoking.

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