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All the Young Dudes: Christmas Compilation

Chapter Text

Some people think little girls should be seen and not heard
But I say...
Oh Bondage! Up yours!

Bind me, tie me
Chain me to the wall
I wanna be a slave to you all
Oh bondage, up yours!
Oh bondage, no more!
Oh bondage, up yours!
Oh bondage, no more!

Marlene flew a quick lap around the quidditch pitch while James drilled the new chaser, Eriksson. She was rubbish, but the best they’d been able to get at short notice. Oh well, Marlene thought to herself, they’d won the cup every year since she had been on time team, it made no odds to her if they lost it this year.

She flew as fast as she dared, enjoying the wind on her face, whistling past her ears, the stands below. She gripped her bat and made a few practice swings. She’d quite miss hitting things, once school was finished.

She was nervous; this was just nervous energy, she told herself. As soon as Marlene addressed the thought, her heart began to pound, her stomach flipped and she had to slow down and fly lower to stop from wobbling. Phew. Hadn’t felt like that in a while. She smiled, and allowed herself to be happy. To feel the happiness, uninhibited and without shame or embarrassment.

James blew the whistle and she landed quickly, keen for a shower. She could see Lily and Mary waiting for her - well, Lily was most likely waiting for James - and she was hoping to avoid them for a bit longer.

“Alright, McKinnon?” Yaz called to her from near the changing rooms, “Having fun up there?”

Marlene rolled her eyes and pretended to ignore her. She was hot from the exercise, so her face was already red - a handy camouflage. She hurried into a shower cubicle quickly, wanting to get the one at the far end which had the best temperature control.

“Ooh you bitch!” Yaz called over in the next stall as Marlene undressed. “Ought to be in Slytherin!”

“Snooze you lose, Patel!” Marlene called back, grinning to herself. She turned the knob to her perfect temperature - not too hot, but with a nice bite, enough to make plumes of steam billow out over the top of the stall. She stepped under the stream, “Aah!” she cried, to annoy Yaz more, “Just how I like it!”

There was quiet for a moment, and then, low - so that only the two of them could hear it -

“Saucy minx.”

Marlene tilted her head back to soak her hair, and bit her lip. That had been the surest sign yet. The butterflies returned to her stomach.

Yaz had only joined the quidditch team this term - She was a sixth year Gryffindor who Marlene had only spoken to once or twice before. But since September, they had been seeing a lot of each other, when she qualified as the new keeper. She was brilliant at it, athletic and tactical, the perfect build, balance and form. At first, Marlene had appreciated her skill. Then, after the heartbreak of the summer had run its course, Yaz had become a pleasant distraction.

Mary was never going to happen. Marlene had accepted this long ago. Or she thought she had. After Remus’s startling revelation that first night in Cornwall, the tension had become almost unbearable for Marlene, and she had spilled everything to her best friend in a flurry of tears and longing kisses. Once she had calmed down, Mary had hugged her, hard, and stroked her hair like a mother, as she gently let Marlene down. It's not how I feel about you. I love you. But it's not like that. After four years of adoring her vivacious, gorgeous, infuriating friend, Marlene had taken this harder than she expected to.

She tried not to take it out on Mary, who had never led her on, never done anything she oughtn’t to, not knowingly. But it was difficult nonetheless. Marlene felt awful; what kind of horrible person would she be, to get angry at her best friend for something neither of them could help? What kind of heartless bitch?

So when Yaz had first flirted - yes, Marlene was sure it was flirting, now - she had been reluctant to respond. To make the same terrible mistake twice would be more than she could bear. So she waited, and was friendly, but not too friendly. Every wink from the other girl was met by a bright smile from Marlene. Every coy remark with an innocent giggle. But now she was sure .

The butterflies flapped their wings again, and it felt good. Exciting. Starting something new. After the summer, she had thought she might never have that feeling again - the chances seemed so impossibly stacked against her. As Marlene shampooed her hair, for some reason she thought of Remus. A few times, lately, she had thought of talking to him. She felt guilty; Remus had always been such a troubled figure, so brave and strong and yet for some reason so repressed and locked down. Bursting with emotions but apparently unable to express any of them. And now they all knew why, she felt so sorry for him. She’d wanted to say something, on their way back from healing classes, which was the only time they were alone, usually. She’d wait for an empty corridor and stop and turn to him and say, very quietly, “Me too, Remus. You aren’t alone.”

But she hadn’t, and time was getting short. Soon enough, none if it would matter any more; school would be over, and they would begin their lives, childish things put away. Marlene read the papers. She knew what was coming, and she knew that there would be no time for selfish problems any more.

“Hey, McKinnon,” Yaz’s soft, singsong voice called over the hissing showers. “I’ve got a bruise, can you take a look? I’ve heard you’re Pomfrey’s star pupil…”

“Um… ok, I can look, just a minute--” Marlene turned off her shower quickly and wrung out her hair. She was crap at drying charms, so it would just have to get stuffed under her woolly winter hat until it dried.

There was a knock at her cubicle door. Marlene wrapped a towel around herself quickly and unlocked the door, hands shaking a little. Yaz was in a towel too, her long dark hair twisted into a black velvet rope over one shoulder, black eyes glittering like twin galaxies, full of tease and mischief. Marlene had to fight not to bite her lip again.

“Mm.” Yaz smirked, stepping inside and closing the door behind her, “Nice and warm in here.”

“Where’s the um... The ...bruise?” Marlene breathed, watching the steam settle on Yaz’s warm brown shoulders and roll down in rivulets, soaking into the thin towel.

“What are you doing after this?” Yaz asked, still smiling, “Fancy a walk?”

“Er… my friend Mary’s outside…”

Yaz shrugged,

“You see her all the time. Come for a walk with me.”

“Um. Yes. Ok.” Oh wow. Now it was happening, she had no idea what to do at all. “The… bruise?”

“Oh yeah,” Yaz laughed, tossing back her head and touching a finger to her jaw line, “Just here…”

Marlene leaned forward to see, and Yaz turned her head smoothly, catching her in a kiss, full in the lips.

Butterflies.