Title: Ferris Wheels and Beach Yoga
Author: SpencnerTibbs Luvr/LuvzDiNozzo (OnRough Trade)
Fandoms: NCIS and Harry Potter
Characters: Tony DiNozzo and Draco Malfoy
Relationship: Pre-Tony DiNozzo/Draco Malfoy
Warnings: Pre-Slash, Post Requiem, Illness Recovery, and Non-Canon Complaint: NCIS and HP
Word Count: 1,991
Rating: Teen Audiences and Up
Author’s Note: I am ignoring the American magical terms from Fantastic Beasts and using only the original terms for my own peace of mind. This was written for the 11-22-18 Thursday Vignette prompt on Rough Trade, which has a 2K word max. This is only my second story as an author in the HP fandom. I apologize if Draco is wildly OC. I did put him in a completely different setting though so some OCness was necessary.
Summary: When Brad ordered him to take some time off while he recovered from pneumonia, Tony didn’t argue for once. The lack of concern and visits from his co-workers, even while he was in the hospital, helped make up his mind. As he watched an attractive blond do his morning yoga on the beach, the last thing he anticipated was the possibility of something more.
Ferris Wheels and Beach Yoga
Tony was sitting on the beach watching a blond man doing yoga at the edge of the surf. When he’d arrived, he was standing in the surf with arms stretched out at his sides reminding Tony of the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro. A surfboard resting nearby in the sand suggested he either would be surfing or already had. It was mid-November in Santa Monica, and the weather was so much nicer than what Tony left behind in DC that he couldn’t resist taking a deep breath of the ocean breeze.
This wasn’t the best idea he’d had recently, though. Fresh off another bout with pneumonia thanks to two dives into the Potomac to save Gibbs and Maddie Tyler. Kelly’s friend didn’t deserved to drown just because Gibbs had to be a cowboy. Two and a half years off of a bout with pneumonic plague a bout with pneumonia hadn’t been the best thing for his lungs. After a battle that included a few days in the hospital his doctor determined him healthy enough to go home, but not back to work.
For once, Tony wasn’t fighting the ordered leave. The last year had made a mess of not only his health, but his head. So, when Brad expressed his concern for Tony’s long-term health, the NCIS agent agreed to an extended leave and a vacation somewhere sunny and warm. Fighting for breath, Tony reached for the bag he’d brought with his books and things including his emergency inhaler. It was just out of his reach though, and the panic from not being able to breath was making it hard to think. Curling up in a ball on his side, Tony tried to not picture blue lights and needles.
“Can I help? Do you need something?”
Afterwards, Tony would think back on the moment and decide that it was the accent similar enough to his mother’s that snapped him out of his panic. Pointing to his bag, Tony fought to sit up and was glad to see the man bypass the bottle of water to come up with the needed inhaler. He was grateful when it was held up to his lips instead of just passed to him. Almost frantically, Tony cupped his hands around the other man’s as he took a shot and breathed in letting the medicine do its work.
It was as the man was pulling his hands away that Tony saw the distinct tattoo on his arm and couldn’t help but freeze for a split second. Lifting his eyes as he felt his chest loosen, Tony saw the blond’s expression quickly slide from open and concerned to shuttered and defensive. Running on instincts, Tony’s hand shot out and just managed to close around the stranger’s wrist. Coughing once more, Tony spit out some phlegm and took a tentative breath.
“Thank you,” Tony offered as he tugged on the man’s wrist gently and was happy when the stranger took the hint to sit. “I would have been in trouble if you hadn’t come over to help. I shouldn’t have set my bag so far from my reach. My mother was from England. Your accent reminds me of her. She met my father at Ilvermorny and was the first magical in her family in generations. Senior was just an embarrassment. My guess is that you were little more than a child when you got that mark. Considering Senior is still doing stupid shit, I’m the last one to judge you. My name is Anthony DiNozzo, but my friends call me Tony.”
“Draco Malfoy,” the younger man offered, and Tony could see him settling himself as his shoulders seemed to be relaxing. “Are you…?”
“No,” Tony answered quickly and gave a shrug. “Much to Senior’s disgust, I have no magical talents. Considering how much trouble my father has gotten into over the years, I always wondered if being a Squib didn’t save me from becoming him. My guess is had mother and father been in England, Senior would have a mark just like that on his own arm. Does it have anything to do with you being here in California?”
“England wasn’t exactly fond of Malfoy’s in general after the war,” Draco explained as he drew symbols in the sand. “I tried for a couple years before I realized that I was going to have to go elsewhere if I was going to make something of myself. When I got accepted to Santa Monica College, I took it as a sign and ended up with a Physiobiology degree at UCLA. They have a quite lovely array of classes designed to incorporate magic with muggle science. It allowed me to find a quite openminded lady who was willing to take me on as an apprentice in potions to go for my mastery after graduation. I am intrigued in seeing how the two fields could mix. That is quite the ugly cough you have.”
“Had the Pneumonic Plague a couple years back, and I’m currently recovering from pneumonia. My doctor suggested I spend some time somewhere warm. I was going to go to Hawaii, but at the last minute I saw a deal on a beach house here and decided it was a sign. For what it’s worth, I don’t think that mark defines you. I have worked enough cases with muggles as well as wizards and witches to know that a person’s life cannot be defined by one stupid mistake or one moment of bravery.”
“You work magical cases?” Draco asked and Tony nodded before explaining.
“Because I already knew about magic the Department of Magical Law Enforcement hired me to be a liaison between them and the muggle law enforcement agencies.” Further explanation was cut off by a huge yawn, and Tony realized that maybe he’d pushed himself too far.
“I’d say you need to be laying down,” Draco observed before standing and offering Tony a hand up. “Are you staying nearby?”
“Just down the beach,” Tony assured and when Draco helped him not only gather his things but accompanied him back to his beach house, he didn’t argue. Standing on the back porch of his beach house, Tony shook Draco’s hand. “I hope to see you again, but if not I wish you luck on this path of yours.”
“It was a pleasure, Tony,” Draco offered back before heading back down the beach, and Tony watched until he was back in the water before going inside to take a nap. Just before drifting off to sleep, he chided himself for not getting a phone number, and hoped that their paths would cross again.
Almost three weeks later, Tony was feeling the need for more than his own company. Heading down to the pier, he decided that a ride on the Ferris wheel would be a good way to start his day. Secretly, he was hoping to run into a certain blond that he hadn’t been able to stop thinking about. If there was anything that the fiasco with Jeanne taught him it was that maybe Tony should give up on the girls’ experiment.
Given that his first sexual experience was with one of the other guys in boarding school, Tony had been aware since his teens that he wasn’t picky about the gender of his partners. Intrigued about Draco’s story, and wanting to make sure his instincts about the man’s character were on point, Tony made some calls in the following days to a couple of his more trusted contacts at the DMLE.
What he’d found out was that while the father had been a real piece of prejudiced shit, Draco seemed to have done his best to get his head out of his ass after the war. The move to America for schooling had been looked at as a second chance for him by everyone involved with the approval, and it seemed that Draco hadn’t wasted his chance. In fact, those that had been keeping an eye on him were so impressed that there were offers on the table that would allow Draco to rejoin the magical community once his potions master’s apprenticeship was completed.
Tony was nearly to the Ferris wheel line when he heard his name being called. Looking around, he saw the man he’d been musing about running his way waving with a big smile on his face.
“I was hoping that I’d run into you,” Tony offered in greeting when Draco reached the spot where he had stopped.
“Likewise,” Draco admitted as they shook hands. “I wanted to thank you for the kind words you gave the DMLE on my behalf. My caseworker keeps telling me I don’t have to be so paranoid any longer, but I can’t help it. Every bit of praise I get is appreciated. Technically, he isn’t my caseworker any longer as I’ve been off probation for a while, but habits and all that, mate.”
“You saved my life,” Tony pointed out easily. “I will be upfront that I also wanted to make sure my instincts were right about you. You should definitely listen to him. I heard nothing but good things about you. Not many people are aware enough to really make the most of a second chance when it’s presented, but from what I hear you have done that and then some. The people I spoke with were all very impressed by you. You have some big opportunities coming your way if you stay on track. Do you like Ferris wheels?”
“I love them!” Draco said enthusiastically and they started heading toward the ride again as Draco kept talking.
“Most back home would be shocked if they could see me now. No fancy clothes, getting ready to ride what most would consider a kiddie ride with a muggle that I would very much love to get shagged by if things go my way. I spend all of my free mornings at a beach surfing and doing beach yoga as the sun comes up. I’m not a very good representation of British Pure-Blood society I’m afraid.”
“Oh, I dunno,” Tony murmured as they stepped into their cabin and took a moment to catch his breath as the Ferris wheel moved. For some reason that first movement always stole it away from him. “It sounds to me like you’re the perfect representation. Did you make a huge mistake in judgement? Yes, of course. My guess though is your age, your inexperience with life in general, and pressure from outside sources most likely including your family contributed to it.
“However, at some point, you had an ah-ha moment and changed your path. So much so that you have a chance at being welcomed back into that community, at least here in America. Everyone makes mistakes. I’ve always thought that it’s what you do after that that determines what kind of person you are.”
“You make me want things I thought I had given up on,” Draco admitted, and Tony flashed him an understanding smile.
“I could say the same thing about you. Not too long ago I was beating myself up for making a stupid decision no matter the circumstances that led to it. I was telling myself that I had no other options but to live with it because I’d made my bed. Then I met this incredibly attractive blond on a beach one morning that made me long for things I thought I’d given up on, who had the guts to change his path when he realized his mistake. I won’t say it’s love at first sight, but I wouldn’t be opposed at seeing if this is just a friendship in the making or something more.”
“I would like that, I think,” Draco admitted, and when the younger man’s hand slipped into his, Tony curled their fingers together and enjoyed the view. It felt like he could see his new path charting itself before is eyes.