“We won’t be expelled for one duel,” said Arthur Weasley, quite reasonably.
“But they’ll have to expel Macnair," she argued. "He’s been caught too many times, and even though the rest of us have clean records they can’t single out only him for expulsion.”
“They won’t expel anyone,” sighed Victoria. “Ahem. We’re here. Twenty paces, if you please.”
The paces were duly measured out with wands, and the two boys took their positions. “Bow.” Macnair gave a sweeping bow and Arthur growled. But when Molly whispered to him, “Just bow,” he performed a less grandiose, but adequate bow. Simultaneously they pulled themselves up, pointed their wands, and yelled.
Both of them stumbled back, but Arthur merely did so due to the impact of the curse, which resulted in boils covering his face, while Macnair’s legs had turned black and would no longer support his weight. Victoria immediately raised her wand. Molly did likewise. “What did you do?” the former asked, calmly but sharply.
“Nothing illegal, on my honour,” replied Arthur.
“If it wasn’t illegal, he would know what it was,” Victoria countered.
“And he wouldn’t if it was?”
“Arthur...” said Molly warningly.
“I know it,” Macnair said, “and it isn’t illegal. But I didn’t know you had it in you, Weasley. If I had, I would have hit you with it myself. I’m going to have to forfeit. Victoria, could you pick me up? You’ll need to carry me to a cave near here-I’ll give you directions.”
When his cousin had trouble picking him up, Arthur stepped forward, offering to help, but was refused by both of them. He turned away, Molly following.
When they were out of earshot, Macnair laughed and said to her, “How long do you think that boyfriend will last?”
Victoria Solen didn’t answer, mostly because carrying him left her out of breath, but also because while he would never have gussed it, she actually thought Arthur Weasley just might be different from Molly Prewett’s ton of other boyfriends. People assumed she was a scarlet woman, or got bored easily, or that no boy in the world could put up with her temper for too long. Those who actually paid attention, and Victoria Solen was one of the most observant and discerning witches in the world, so much she almost crossed the line into spying, knew the first notion were absurd. The second was not quite it either. The third might be closer, but it was all together less that Molly got bored than that she got as frustrated at her boyfriends, because they couldn’t live up to her standards.
Meanwhile Molly made disgruntled noises for some time, which Arthur ignored. Finally she said, “Why aren’t you telling me to stop?”
“Because it would only make you angrier.”
Molly liked this answer, but now wanted another one. “You could point out you fought that duel because Macnair insulted me. Most boys would.”
But Arthur shook his head, saying, “You’d accuse me of lying, and you’d be right. Sure, I hoisted the challenge after he insulted you, but...”
Molly was truly impressed. Not very many boys would admit to that. She’d dated plenty of puffed-up young wizards who would be furious with her behavior, calling her shrewish and ungrateful, just because she’d happened to be the excuse they used to fight a battle they’d really wanted to fight since before they even knew her very well.
By the time they got back to the village, a smiling Molly had slipped her hand into Arthur’s; he took a tight grip on it, and when he said, “Molly, do you mind if your brothers still think I fought that duel for you?” she giggled and agreed.
Neither helped them in the front yard, but of course they both had cloaks, and Molly’s warming spell, which had the added bonus of encouraging them to stay in a certain part of the yard. The previous summer Bill had taken to climbing trees, and up the side of the house.
Molly would have rather they not leave the house, not in the times they lived in. But in this case she had agreed to it. She was waiting for Gideon to arrive, who would take her sons to Dorcas Meadowes, there to have certain spells done on them.
When his figure appeared through the trees, Molly drew out her wand, and murmured an incantation. The tip of her wand glowed a reassuring blue.
Gideon was the taller of her two brothers, with several scars on his face and his hair gone from curses. His smile was gentle, and he fixed it on his sister and her sons. Bill was happy to see him, running forward and leaping into his arms with an “Uncle Gideon!” but Charlie did not remember his uncle and shrank back.
“It’s all right, Charlie, this is Uncle Gideon,” Molly said to him. “See? Your brother knows that.”
“C’mon, Charlie, don’t be scared!” Bill added.
Encouraged by these words, and by Gideon’s soothing eyes and face, Charlie joined Bill on the back of the broom, and after some parting words, surprisingly gruff on both sides, Gideon was away, his robes sweeping up the leaves at the gate and causing them to settle at the edge of the yard, where Molly hadn’t get managed to get all the weeds out. Well, while she was outside, she might as well...
But she had only taken two steps towards the gate when she heard a voice ask, “Molly?”
She nearly screamed and whirled around her wand pointed towards her husband before she realized the voice was his. “Don’t do that!” she yelled.
“Sorry, Mollywobbles.” That name was a new invention of his, and helped confirm it was really him, which made her relax.
Still she wasn't happy. “What are you doing here anyway? You should be at work.”
“I took the day off.”
“Because we’ve spent hardly any time together lately. I’ve always been working late. And I miss you, Mollywobbles. I really do.” His voice became very plaintive.
Molly felt it too; he sure wasn't the only one who had been feeling a bit tired of them barely able to say good morning to each other before he hurried off to his office, and of his arriving home so late he could only eat whatever she had cooked and kept warm before turning in.
“And you might not like this, but you know, they’re very common in the Orient. I’ve managed to get my hands on a flying carpet.” And he drew a rolled up carpet from behind his back.
“You think we should go flying?” Molly asked. “I don’t know, Arthur, it’s cold today.”
“The carpet’s enchanted to project heat. We’ll feel like we were in the desert!”
Desert heat sounded very good just then. After all, since it hadn’t rained much more in the recent months than it would in the desert, it might as well be warm. But the last winter had been too mild for this upcoming winter to be likewise.
“What about the Muggles? Heat doesn’t allow for a Disillusionment Charm. Or Death Eaters?”
“We’ll rely on something else. An Arabic spell that it would very useful to be able to put on more than carpets, but at least it can be put on them...” Arthur spread the carpet out across the ground. Abstract gold designs wandered across a pale blue surface. The thread looked worn down, especially in the middle. “Sit down.”
When Molly stepped onto the carpet, the heat nearly toasted her feet, flew up under her robes and underrobes, and slid up her face and into her hair. She considered taking off her shoes before she sat.
Arthur stood before her. She watched him raise his wand and speak what sounded like an Arabic word, then lunge over and swing around wildly, his wand making a misshapen shape around the carpet. “There. Now noone looking at us will have interest in us whatsoever.”
“That’s odd,” said Molly, but she had to admit it was a clever way of avoiding notice. “So how do we...?”
“Like this.” Arthur knelt behind her, reached over her, and placed his hands above the thin gold tassels that decorated the front and back of the carpet. They pointed themselves upwards, and the carpet lifted.
As it did, Arthur and Molly were pushed against each other, and Molly felt a new heat around her legs. She tried to remember the last time she and Arthur had made love, and discovered she couldn’t.
Then Arthur ran his lips over a sensitive spot near her ear, and Molly pulled away, certain this wasn’t a good idea. “You need to steer.”
“You’re right,” Arthur sounded disappointed. He also sounded aroused. He raised his hands up and over, and the carpet flew out of the yard and over towards the village.
“After a certain amount of time,” he then said, “if we lift high enough, I should be able to leave the carpet to steer itself. Maybe then we could...”
“Arthur, did you get this carpet with the intention of having sex on it?” she demanded, not as appalled as she felt she ought to be.
“No, though I admit the possibility occurred to me...”
And once it had occurred to him....but now they were flying through the village, and it seemed downright disturbing that there was a Muggle walking alongside them and seeming completely indifferent to the fact that there were two people flying on a carpet right next to her.
“See?” said Arthur. “No interest whatsoever. Since this is something she ought to find interesting, her mind will have to edit it out to cope. So when she remembers walking her later, she won't remember us being here either. Arab wizards do this all the time. Always works.” He seemed a little unnerved by it himself, though.
"Co me along, dear,” the Muggle called to her son, who was a little bit behind, and didn’t seem to care about his mother’s odd companions either.
Shortly after he moved them upwards, and first the village then the land beneath them dwindled. He pressed hard against Molly as he guided the carpet, and she was sure he wasn’t doing it by accident, and that he meant for her to feel what she could feel pressing against her backside. It didn't take too long until Molly felt her insides were being scorched.
Finally he pulled away. “There. She’ll run smooth without and aid now.”
Molly turned around even as she moved to claim her mouth, his own hot and moist. They threw their legs around each other, and the feeling of him hard so close to where she wanted him made her moan.
“Molly...” He was moving his mouth downwards, impatiently pulling at the buttons on her layers of clothing. She pulled her bra down for him, tearing at his robes, her own want growing still stronger by the second.
He pressed her down into the carpet, making her nervous for a second, but the cloth pressed back at her, heating her body further until she could barely stand it. His hands and mouth traveled up and down her body; her hands carved patterns on his chest.
When at last they had their layers of robes and smallclothes pushed aside enough Molly moved onto her side, brought him down to her level and kissed him hard, throwing her leg over his hip and guiding him into her. It felt so good; her body had been aching so badly to be filled, yet still it craved more; she wondered if it would ever get enough of him. He groaned and rocked against her, his skin pressing into her privates in exactly the right way; she moved back pressing fervent kisses to his skin, savouring him, his smell, his slow moving, his harsh breathing, now getting faster, his hands moving over her breasts, then down to her hips. She fell partly back, caught a glimpse of sky and a figure in black before he began thrusting hard and latched his mouth hard onto her collar, lapping slowly down towards her breasts, and her eyes snapped shut and she couldn’t even manage enough breath to urge him on. She clutched at his back, feeling as if she was plummeting, collapsing, she buried herself against his hot skin and then felt her orgasm take her, months of pent-up tension rushing though her body and out through her skin, and leaving her spent at he moved faster and faster and finally yelled his completion, falling against her as the carpet, seeming to interpret their mood, slowed down, and now that Molly looked, was frightfully close to the ground.
Arthur hastily pushed Molly aside, nearly knocking her off the carpet, but its edges lifted up and caused her to roll into Arthur as it lifted itself back up. His hands swerved and so did the carpet, moved towards a host of black-robed figures that were undoubtable Death Eaters.
Arthur pulled his hands back, and he and Molly buttoned their robes back up. They took a look at the Death Eaters and a look at each other. The shocking thought came to Molly: had they rutted their way through that crowd, neither party capable of taking any interest in the other?
There was no question about attacking: there were too many of them, and neither was about to test the carpet spell’s ability to generate disinterest in those being attacked by those on it. It seemed to be a meeting breaking up, and Arthur cursed. “Damn. We could’ve made so much use of this spell; and, you know, once it becomes more generally known about here in Britain, they’ll probably figure out some way to keep us from using carpets around them. Or we'll have to, since they will. Oh, will you look at that...”
His eyes had fallen on Lucius Malfoy, who was with Walden MacNair and Cygnus Black. “Don’t talk to me of any Perseus!” The last was saying. He made a noise of disgust. “That’s what my daughter called her Mudblood. ‘He’s my Perseus, daddy.’ What girl can make that word an insult? Then she called me a monster, and declared her Perseus had saved her. Don’t talk to me about their kid, either. If it’s a metamorphagus, just kill it before it gets older, the monstrous thing. Nothing produced by such a cross-breeding...” There didn’t seem much use in listening further, especially because MacNair had Disapparated and it looked like the other two were just about to do the same, as were the other Death Eaters. Arthur flew around like mad, but the only other snitches of conversation they caught were “some kind of trouble” and “good day” before they were alone in the valley.
“Let’s go home,” he finally said. “And I’ll tell Dumbledore we need to protect little Nymphadora. Though how I’m going to explain how we ended up doing this eavesdropping I’ve no idea.”
When Molly gave birth to another son nine months later, she insisted on his being named Perseus, and neither Bill nor Charlie could understand why that made their father turn so red.