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PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2022 2:19 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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While Draco knew that he was technically hired as a consultant and eventually would be expected to actually do some consulting, he hadn’t thought that they would show him that level of trust this early on.
Of course he knew that Harry trusted him with these things, having been able to witness first hand just what Draco was able to do for months, but it did come as somewhat of a surprise that Buchannan did as well. He had never doubted that Buchannan thought fondly of him and knew of his abilities, but Draco knew just how big a show of trust it was to allow him to do something like this with this many witnesses.
By all accounts, Draco should probably have been hit by stage fright, having been used to working alone for years before Harry showed up on his doorstep, but he found that nothing came. He had already had several ideas of what he wanted to do had he been allowed to, so it only took him a moment to properly organise his thoughts such that he could make a prioritised list.
“Alright,” he said in a soft voice, not wanting to come across as someone who had just been waiting for this moment since arriving, even thought it was probably pretty close to the truth.
He just had to hope that he was actually as good as both Harry and Buchannan thougt him to be.
“I do have some ideas,” he started out, unsure how much commentary would be needed, unused still to having an audience to what he was able to do, but he so wanted to prove himself worthy of the trust he was being shown.
Gingerly, he picked his wand out of the holster that was pressed tightly against his thigh, something in the back of his mind reminding him to move slowly such that the motion wouldn’t be read as threatening, but he doubted that anyone would actually think that.
“Do I just go, or do you want me to talk you through what I am doing?” He felt the need to ask, afraid that he was going to be seen as presumptuous, but Harry was right. He was there because his knowledge on the dark arts was unparalleled and he didn’t mind explaining his process and his thoughts behind it.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2022 9:07 am 

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At that, Harry saw the team shift, a subtle but definite show of interest. Particularly Connor seemed on the verge of speaking out of terms, and it probably rang true for all present that they were eager to see Draco at work, finally an opportunity to see his presence justified.
“Go ahead,” Harry repeated, much to Connor’s apparent disappointment. Already assured of his talent and skill, Harry had no interest in forcing Draco to elaborate beyond what felt comfortable to him.
“Speak up if you find anything,” he added, not because he doubted that Draco would, but for the sake of treating him just as any other coworker. “Be prepared to answer questions if they arise.”
Then, with an almost too casual nod in the direction of the house, a smile ghosted across Harry’s lips. “Other than that, knock yourself out.”


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2022 4:13 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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It was a lot to take in and as Draco turned to properly face the house, he took a moment to take a deep breath and prioritise the list of spells that had slowly, but surely, been piling up in his head. He wanted to do both Harry and Buchannan proud, wanting to prove that there was a reason that he was there and that he wasn’t just some kind of pet project, trying to show the terrorist the proper way in life or whatever.
With a level of determination that he had forgotten he possessed, knowing that it came from being deeply competitive, a side of him that he hadn’t had a chance to nurture for years, Draco’s hands started moving as he muttered words that were well known to him.
While he had done a lot of practical research at the manor, most of it had been on smaller objects and he was having to rethink his process now that it was an entire house. He found that it came remarkably easy to him though, perhaps having spent more time thinking about what he would do if they’d let him than he had initially let on.
Unsurprisingly, the house lit up, specifically the front door, but that wasn’t really something that Draco hadn’t expected.
When no new insights came from that from the outside, Draco made the move to go inside the house, feeling certain that that would be were his answers would be.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2022 2:16 pm 

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Once again, it was a rare privilege getting to experience first hand how others reacted to Draco. As if tied together by a string, the people surrounding him straightened their posture, Connor’s breath hitching softly, but other than that, nobody moved, struck in place by the immediate sign of progress Draco had conjured.
Harry turned his attention away from Draco’s back, glancing across the quiet team in an attempt to commit the moment to memory, if nothing else then to offer it as praise and proof to Draco when it was just the two of them.
Asking no permission, Harry stepped ahead to follow Draco to the house, and behind him, the heard footsteps quickly follow him.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2022 2:20 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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It was surprisingly easy for Draco to just go within himself and focus on the spells that he was performing and not think of his captive audience. Sure, he realised that they were there, but they mostly served as background, not thinking much more of them than he would his dark objects at home.
Once he entered the house, the soft blue glow lead him to the living room and Draco followed it willingly, despite knowing that this spell in particular wasn’t likely to give him any further answers. He did have a follow up spell though and once he was inside the living room, he wasted not time in moving his hands an muttering a new incantation, moving with such a practiced ease that he managed to almost look bored.
It was something he had done a million times before, and he took an eager look around to see if there was anything that lit up.
He was surprised to see one of the floorboards seemed to give indication of activity, having been assured several times that there was no lower level to the house, but maybe his original theory had been right.
“I think there’s something under the house,” Draco stated, mostly into the room, blind to what was going on behind him.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2022 3:09 pm 

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First into the house behind Draco, Harry had thoughtlessly lingered half a step inside the doorway of the living room, both an attempt to keep traffic out of an active scene and to give Draco room to breathe and to work.
Harry barely heard Draco, barely registered the blue light shining from the floorboards, finding the room suddenly overcast in blue. His stomach turned with annoyance rather than fright, realizing Draco had used the same spell on the room as he did to track the placement of the magic lodged in his chest.
Devout of logic, Harry lifted a hand to cover it, turning away from the doorway.
“Sir,” Connor allerted quicker than Harry had shifted, her voice tight in her throat. By the quickness of Buchannan’s response, Harry realized she must have grabbed him.
“Malfoy,” Buchannan called with more insistence, stepping into the room despite Harry’s almost juvenile attempt of further angling his chest away and out of sight.
“Paul, it’s fine -” he dismissed, annoyance seeping into his voice, taken aback with the feeling of frustration that Draco’s spell had alerted of that, too, and the thoughtlessness of Draco using it.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23, 2022 1:43 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Draco had been too focused on his find to notice the commotion taking place behind him. It was only when Buchannan called for his attention that Draco turned around, seeing the bright blue light emit from Harry’s chest as well. This wasn’t something he had taken into consideration when picking out this particular spell, but it made sense that it would react to the magic lodged in there.
“Right,” he said, flicking his wand in Harry’s direction and watching as the light dimmed and, eventually, died out. He could tell that the others were worried about it, probably uncertain about what exactly Draco had been testing for and he couldn’t exactly blame them for assuming that this was either new or dangerous information that Draco was unearthing.
“The spell I just used helps me locate sources of dark magic,” he explained, his tone unhurried and unbothered, having not exactly expected this outcome, but he also wasn’t entirely surprised by it.
“And seeing as Potter has dark magic lodged in his chest, it is only natural that it reacts to him as well.”

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23, 2022 4:14 pm 

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Even Harry felt startled to silence by such a curt reply. Despite his absence from the force, that particular piece of information had remained between Harry and Robards, both hesitant to share it beyond those directly affected. This hadn’t included the immediate team, and though Harry had thought Buchannan might have pieced it together, the genuine fright in his expression served as proof that not even he could have anticipated the severity.
Harry felt his cheeks flush, with equal parts embarrassment and juvenile interest, taken by the authority in Draco’s voice.
“Potter, any amount of magic that’s traceable to that degree-”
“Enough,” Harry interrupted, cheeks warm as he sent Buchannan a glance, disinterested in having this conversation here, now. He saw Buchannan swallow his words, disagreeing but unable to force this conversation.
“You were saying?” Harry redirected, eyes and attention to Draco.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2022 12:49 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Almost immediately, Draco realised that he had made a mistake.
He had, wrongfully apparently, assumed that the others would have known that Harry was sick as well. After all, prior to showing up at Draco’s doorstep all those many months ago, Harry had been at St. Mungos and people had to have known that there was some reason as to why he had been missing from the office for as long as he had.
He gladly took to Harry’s change of subject, clearly noticing that this was something that Harry would have rather not brought up. It made Draco feel more than a little ashamed and thus he felt that it was his responsibility to properly change the subject.
“Yes, I know that there is supposedly no sub level to the house, but I definitely think that there is something we have to take a look at underneath the house.”

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:16 am 

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The repetition was almost enough for Harry to forget Draco had spoken out of terms, straightening his posture slightly when Draco agreed there was something below the house. Once again, it made Harry glance at Buchannan, the aim entirely changed. Harry had for months insisted the house to be greater than it was, but even repeating the scans of the house, Buchannan and Connor had found nothing that justified the risky task of uprooting the house blind.
Though a weary discomfort was still visible on the Cursebreakers, the prospect of a new lead eventually won over, a more apparent willingness to change the subject in their expressions. Buchannan’s lips parted, but he hesitated to speak.
Harry finally stepped into the room, eyes to the blue light emitting from the floor a few feet beside Draco.
“We can rip the boards up,” Harry suggested with a bruteness that differentiated Aurors from Cursebreakers, and which Harry knew Buchannan to cringe at. Harry could hardly not get himself to care, restless for progress.
Harry took another step forward, thoughtlessly scuffing at the boards with his shoes.
“Sir,” Laura forewarned with some insistence, making Harry’s eyes dart up to her.
Harry’s sergeant, Laura Szczepanski, had kept quiet on the matters of cursebreaking, but not inattentive. She of all had slowed the least amount of dismay, though her gaze was still frayed with nerves when it flickered first to Draco and then back to Harry. “That’s where you fell.”


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2022 2:04 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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While Draco had now known that specific place to be significant, it still almost took him out to be told that that had been where Harry fell. It suddenly made it even more significant, making Draco realise there probably a reason that both Harry and the board lit up at the same time.
“I think we should rip the boards up,” Draco stated, his tone much calmer than what he actually felt. He was slightly worried about Harry being this close to the place again, knowing that the magic in his chest was volatile and feeling absolutely desperate to ensure that it didn’t get any worse. However, he also knew that he couldn’t show just how much he cared about that in this company, so he did what he could to stay absolutely professional.
“It might just be foundation down there, but I think we need to see.”

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2022 9:18 am 

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Harry’s attention remained on Laura, but soon came to the realization that her words had not been meant as a discouragement, but a forewarning. It stifled the air of the room, even despite the wonderfully concise recommendations Draco spoke; after all, he was the only one in the room who hadn’t been present when the scene Towthorpe had had to be shut down.
His eyes finally dragging away from his team, Harry wearily glanced towards the seemingly insignificant spot marked on the floor.
Eventually deciding that no objections had actually been made, Harry took another few steps towards it, paying attention to the give of the floor as he approached. Although decrepit, the flooring didn’t feel hollow, and Harry hummed an absentminded acknowledgement to Draco.
Somewhere behind them, he could tell Laura had edged past Connor and Buchannan, approaching the area herself.
“What do you make of it, Buck?” Harry asked, if only to keep Buchannan engaged, sending him a glance as he crouched, an odd foot away from the light.
Buchannan looked on edge, lips parted but hesitant to speak. Harry saw the objection on his lips, but also soon saw the dullness of exhausted acceptance wash over his features.
“I think it’s rash,” he eventually commented, but there was little fight in his voice. “Frankly.”
“Is there anything else we can learn before opening it up?” Harry asked, this time directing himself to Draco.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2022 4:04 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Everything had gone so fast and Draco barely felt like he had had any time to wrap his head around any of it. He wasn’t used to having this many inputs in such a short amount of time, nor having to take other people’s opinions into consideration before doing what he thought was right. He understood why they had to ask Buchannan and why Harry would want to listen to the other aurors and cursebreakers, but Draco’s head was spinning from it all.
Relieved by having a concrete question to answer, Draco turned to focus on Harry, finding that to be easier than trying to take in the entirety of the room.
“Not much no,” Draco admitted, not meaning to be rude by not paying the others attention, especially considering that he technically answered to Buchannan and not Harry, but considering that most people knew him to be Potters Pet Project anyway he figured that it wouldn’t come as a big surprise.
“I do have further spells I can try out, but they will mostly just tell us that there is something and potentially the severity of the magic there.”

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2022 3:22 am 

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Harry’s attention remained on Draco as he weighed his words. Crouched where he was, Draco was the only one in view, the blue light shining between them. The sight was strangely familiar, the way the uplit light coloured Draco’s hair turquoise and exagerated the paleness of his skin. Harry had frankly lost count of how many times they had repeated his exact spell on his chest.
“We’re opening up,” he eventually stated. His voice was calm and the decision was made with some consideration, but it was inevitably marked by almost an entire year of no progress. His fingers itched to move forward.
Shifting his weight, he peered under himself, gauging the length of the boards and the placements of the seams between them. His mind shifting gears, he thoughtlessly itched at the stubble on his jaw.
“Is there a Healer on call?” he asked into the room, but did eventually glance over his shoulder at Buchannan, if only for a moment. His attention was almost immediately diverted back to Draco.
“Besides you - I want you as a Cursebreaker on this, pay attention to the magic.”


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2022 10:46 am 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Draco had been about to protect when Harry requested if there were any healers on call, almost feeling offended when he heard the request. However, it made sense when Harry instead turned to him and told him to keep his attention on the magic.
Having been used to running a one man operation until Harry showed up on his doorstep, and frankly even after that as well, Draco didn’t even consider that you could ask others for help, just willingly jumping into whatever job he knew that he would be able to fulfil.
“We have Parker on call,” Buchannan answered before Draco had the time to even consider a proper answer, deciding that he would do his best to just focus on the job at hand.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2022 11:21 am 

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Harry saw the fight flicker across Draco’s expression, inevitably bringing a lopsided smile to Harry’s lips. He had expected it, precisely why he had felt the need to add the distinction, but it was a joy to watch, happy to find Draco not only willing but eager to participate.
“Alright,” he accepted, finding Parker perfectly capable.
Attention once again lowered to the light, fingers almost instinctively tracing the butt seam of two boards, the floor crumbling away with even the slightest pressure.
“Any risk of this here being a reactive curse?” Harry asked, and though his eyes darted first to Draco, it was spoken to the room. Whatever Harry had in his chest was not particularly volatile, not once it lodged itself there.
“Buck, Connor, any precautions we need to take?”
“Not if it’s not trapped, no,” Connor answered, happy to be called upon. Her attention turned to Draco for his judgment, too, given it was his spell and finding. “Standard stasis on the area to brace any particles lifting should do it.”
“Draco?” Harry encouraged with a nod, eyes still on the crumbling wood, privately agreeing with Connor’s assessment.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2022 4:03 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Even though Draco had already gotten a lot of privileges in this case, having gotten to try out his spells that definitely weren’t generally accepted nor used for a case like this, and yet it still came as a surprise to him when Harry, once again, asked for his input.
It made him feel proud of the work he had done, knowing that Harry had seen it and asked him because he knew that Draco’s work checked out, but the fact that he would recognise that in a setting like this was probably never going to properly sink in for him.
“It’s severe but it seems stable,” Draco noted, seeing no point in repeating the point brought forward by Connor, seeing as he fully agreed with her assessment.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 7:39 am 

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Harry nodded. Despite Buchannan’s hesitations, he was satisfied with the assessments made by both Draco and Connor. Buchannan had offered no alternate approaches, and though Harry was certain he would present them if Harry pressed for them, they all seemed aware of Harry’s intent on following through on Draco’s gut feeling.
“Alright,” he mused, a final little acceptance.
Aware of the fact that physical dismantlings usually fell under the Auror’s charge, Harry thoughtlessly picked at the nail in the board, considering if the word was done more carefully if it was done manually.
As he traced the seam between two boards, once again pressing at them to judge their state, Harry’s brow furrowed.
Hovering his hand a few inches above the light, the shadow cast by his palm made the room flicker in and out of daylight, making the room wobble in a way that made Harry’s stomach lurch.
He shifted his hand another few inches backward, out of the beam of light.
“Connor, did you cast a statis already?” Harry asked.
Harry’s voice must not have been entirely without infliction, because Connor seemed startled when she gave an answer, flustered at the insinuation that she would have broken protocol by using non-verbal spells in a team dismantling.
“No, sir.”


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2022 3:02 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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It was abundantly clear to Draco that Harry had found something, but probably was unsure exactly what he had found. As he knelt down next to Harry though, wanting to see if he could tell what it was that caused Harry to hesitate, he was fairly certain that he understood as well.
“That’s not a statis,” he commented, by now feeling confident that this was just as much his project as it was Harry’s, and didn’t even see it as potentially speaking out of turn to comment like this.
It was the faintest of things, Draco only really able to tell that it was there because he had been searching for it, but something in him told him that it was bad, making his stomach churn and his scar itch.
“I don’t know what it is.”

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2022 10:04 am 

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Harry’s eyes darted up at Draco, less with alarm and more with unabashed interest, suddenly finding him so closely within reach. There was something greatly thrilling about discoveries, an undeniable proof of progress, and even more sharing it with Draco.
After months of treading waters, Harry could almost laugh.
“Buck,” Harry called when Draco wasn’t able to identify the sensation, and the immediate sound of creaking boards behind him proved that Buchannan had already been intending on approaching.
Harry’s hand continued to move to and fro the light, before finally coming to a halt above it.
“It’s a breeze, isn’t it?” Harry asked Draco, his voice almost surprised with the mundanity of the statement.
Draco’s blanket dismissal gave Harry the impression that his mind was going in entirely different directions; as Harry’s gaze flickered across Draco’s features, he realized Draco was worried.
“Here, hands off,” Buchannan warned, making Harry crane his neck upwards with surprise, almost toppling over at he shifted his weight back, hands onto his knees.
Casting the same spell Buchannan had used to detect rifts in Draco’s wards, months ago, a fine dusting of powder appeared on the floor in front of them, the particles twinkling bright blue in the light. Somewhere outside of Harry’s field of vision, either Connor or Laura had shut the rotten curtains, leaving them in blue twilight to watch as each particle slowly sank to the floor, no motion in the air to disturb them.
“There’s no motion there -” Buchannan started.
“No, feel,” Harry interrupted, insisting only because Draco had felt it too. He waved, a motion to invite Buchannan onto the floor.


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