TITLE: The Parole Officer & the Parolee
Word Count: 1.9k
Prompt: for Cassy: I really enjoyed your Harry Potter x Bella Swan and Harry Potter x Loki. I find your pure blood world building to be so interesting so anything featuring that. But honestly I will read anything you write!
Pairing(s): Harry/Bella (?)
Fandom(s): Harry Potter Series / Twilight Series
Warnings: discrimination against Muggles, description of the correctional system, horrible Edward
The story went something like this. There had been a raid and Harry had been so certain that they were about to seize over two kilos of illegal potions. He had called in every favor both in and out of the Auror Department, everything was prepared, and the sting that was going to make his career turned out to be a couple of Hufflepuffs sneaking in Potter paraphernalia.
It had been a career embarrassment.
It had been more than that.
His superiors thought that the sting had been a vendetta against his fans as Harry’s anti-social personality and hatred of the media was well known.
At least he hadn’t been fired. The higher ups had just made him a parole officer—a Muggle parole officer. Harry’s parolees were all Muggles who had violated the Statute of Secrecy somehow by coming across the magical. They now had to be tracked to be sure they kept their mouths shut and opinions to themselves.
(Obliviation was considered, after the war, a cruel and unusual punishment.).
Today he was meeting his favorite parolee, a woman who in her youth had gotten tangled up with vampires and, despite every natural instinct in her body, hadn’t run the other way. She just kept coming back for more and more vampire charm.
The file defied all reason in Harry’s opinion.
Being abandoned by her vampire boyfriend in the Olympic Crescent when she was eighteen should have done it.
If that hadn’t been enough, then surely meeting (and somehow surviving) the Volturi would have scared off any normal Muggle girl.
She had been abandoned a second time just before she graduated Muggle high school and then, instead of taking that as a sign, she had gone searching for vampires instead of going to Muggle college.
She hadn’t found vampires. Instead, she had found Diagon Alley in her travels.
“Miss Swan,” he greeted as he walked into the dark pub in Muggle London. Part of Bella Swan’s parole agreement was that she avoid all magic, including the Leaky Cauldron.
Brown eyes lifted from fold hands, and Bella’s face lit up as she caught sight of Harry as she lifted up her hand in greeting. She tried to stand up, but somehow tripped over herself, and Harry quickly caught her with his Quidditch fast reflexes.
Bella blushed, the redness of her cheeks spreading down her pale neck.
Harry tried not to watch its progress and instead looked away toward the back of the pub where he saw the bartender was pulling a pint for another customer. Lowering Bella back into her seat, he took the one opposite her and tried to clear his throat casually. “How are you?” he asked her.
“Oh,” she murmured, glancing up at him before looking away quickly again. The blush was still staining her cheeks. “The same as always, Auror Potter.”
“Good, good,” Harry murmured.
A waitress came up and he ordered a steak pie and a squash. Noticing that Bella didn’t even have a drink in front of her, he playfully nudged her with his foot, and she squeaked, before asking for a lemonade and a salad.
“You should eat more,” Harry chided.
Bella shrugged but at least she was now looking at him with those big doe eyes of hers.
“You’re looking thin.”
“I’m always thin,” she replied absently, as if she didn’t much care.
At this Harry opened his folder and saw that Bella had a major weight loss after her first abandonment by the vampires. “Magical withdrawal is a real thing, Miss Swan,” he reminded her, the argument somewhat familiar. “You need to eat.—Don’t make me assign a nurse to your case.”
Bella looked uncomfortable but nodded. She took a deep breath and then pushed her long dark hair out of her face. “How are you, Auror Potter?”
He smiled a little to himself at the desperate look in her eyes, sure that she just wanted to change the subject. His mind flitted to Grimmauld Place which always seemed empty when Teddy was at Hogwarts. Ron and Hermione had children now, his ex-girlfriend Ginny had married Dean Thomas and they seemed happy. Neville was with Susan Bones and they had just announced their engagement. Even Draco Malfoy had put an announcement in the paper that his wife had had a healthy baby boy with some ghastly name. Harry, though, he just seemed to be stuck.
Harry came out of his thoughts and he noticed that Bella was watching him closely. Giving her an affable smile, he promised, “Oh, I’m all right, Miss Swan.—Now, are you still working at that bookshop?”
She blinked, clearly disappointed, but she rallied as their drinks came. “Y-yes,” she agreed. “I’m writing a novel.”
“Oh?” he questioned, as he took a sip of his squash. Sometimes he wondered how Muggles could drink this bizarre liquid. Pumpkin juice was much superior.
The blush was once again on Bella’s cheeks and she quietly admitted, “Edward.”
At this, Harry quickly put down his drink and tried to catch Bella’s gaze. “You know that’s a violation of your parole, Miss Swan.”
She bit her lip, but she argued: “It wouldn’t be, if I were magical.”
Harry blew out of his nose, and he asked, “How do you propose to become magical? Edward’s not coming back for you. Even if he did—the Volturi would never let you write a book about your experiences. Secrecy is their main priority. If we had turned you over to them, as our treaty with the Volturi states we should have—”
“I would be dead,” she cut in, “I know.”
Silence fell over the table. “Where is this book?”
“It’s only a few pages,” Bella demurred.
That didn’t much matter. A book, even if only a few pages long, was still a book. Bella should know better. “Where are these pages?”
Bella was clearly thinking again, not quite looking at Harry, and then she seemed to rally. “Won’t you hear me out?”
It was never good, Harry knew from experience, to allow a parolee’s delusions to take form. It always led to disaster and potential regression in therapeutic parole. “You want to be magical,” he told her carefully, falling silent when his steak pie was set in front of him. Harry picked up his fork but didn’t begin eating. “You can’t, Miss Swan. You’re a Muggle. It’s genetic. There have been many before you who have grappled with this hard cold fact, but it is, I assure you, a fact. You cannot change your magical status any more than you can change the natural color of your brown eyes.”
Bella was ignoring her salad and all of her attention was on Harry. “I could marry a Magical,” she told him plainly.
“And where would you find one?” Harry asked her back seriously, knowing that any wizard she met would be warned she was on parole as soon as their connection became known to the Ministry of Magic. Any relationship she might form was doomed to be a short-lived one.
Looking at him incredulously, Bella answered, “You.”
Harry blinked at her in surprise and then turned to his pie.
“You’re not wearing a wedding ring.”
“You are tenacious, Miss Swan,” he begrudgingly complimented as he took his first bite of steak pie, which turned to ash in his mouth.
She shifted uncomfortably in her chair. “I know I’m your favorite parolee.”
Bella, of course, was his favorite parolee but she had no way of knowing that. “Bold,” he told her. “Where is this book?”
She desperately looked at him, but he simply put down his fork.
“If you don’t tell me where the book is, I will order a search of your apartment and your place of work, and I’ll have to reorder mandatory drug testing twice a week, Miss Swan, for non compliance.” Sometimes parolees got their hands on potions and abused them, which was always difficult.
“If we had met differently,” she tried, “if I had walked into the Leaky Cauldron and you had been sitting there instead of that horrible man—”
She meant Theo Nott, who had reported her to the Ministry of Magic immediately.
“—then I know you would have liked me. Auror Potter,” she begged, her eyes wide.
And he would have liked her, Harry knew. He did like her. The problem was that she was a danger magnet and somehow drew the supernatural to her like an accio charm in the worst way possible. However, he had never let himself think on it. Harry was nothing if a professional and Bella was a girl who desperately needed to belong to something bigger than herself. She was the type of girl who would have been the perfect convert to a cult, but somehow vampires had found her instead and she, later, had found Magical Britain.
“Don’t make me arrest you,” he told her quietly, his voice stern. “Eat your salad.” His green eyes flashed, and Harry knew he looked dangerously.
Bella looked like she was going to protest. After several long, tense moments, though, she picked up her fork and began to eat.
“I’m going to order a medinurse from St. Mungo’s to come visit you Thursday morning at 10 a.m.,” he told her, opening his folder and making a note. “I think you’re showing signs of unusual magical dependency. Now,” he continued quietly, not liking how her face had fallen and was beginning to break, “where is the book?”
“On my bedside table,” she told him dully through clenched teeth, “in my flat.”
He nodded and made another note.
After the lunch, which was uncomfortable and tense, Harry escorted Bella back to her place of employment and then took the short walk back to her flat. It was on the fourth floor over a shoe store, and no one bothered to look at him as he climbed the winding stairs up to the door. He unlocked it with a simple wave of his wand, and it was easy enough to find the bedroom.
The flat was unusually neat, everything folded and in its place, and there on the bedside table was a journal. He opened it up and saw on the first page the word “Twilight.” It must be the title. The second page was more worrying. In Bella’s scroll she had written, “for Auror Potter.”
Harry bit his lip before turning a few more pages to see the beginning of the story when Bella was a teenager in a place called Phoenix, Arizona.
The journal was over half full.
One page, somewhere two thirds of the way through, was nothing but Bella scribbling “Mrs. Isabella Potter” over and over again.
This, with the dedication, was worrying, along with Bella’s assertion that Harry was unmarried at that she was his favorite parolee.
He closed the journal and tucked it under his arm, looking around the room. There were no pictures, none of friends, none of families, none of the vampires. It was curious.
Still, Harry thought it might be better to apply for Bella to be transferred to another parole officer. Harry, though, allowed himself to wonder for a moment what it would have been like if he had met Bella when she walked into the Leaky Cauldron that first time, but somehow he could not picture it. He could not picture Bella in his life any way than as his parolee, which was good. It showed he still had his objectivity.
It meant, however, that he continued to be alone.