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Parallel Catastrophes - Afternoon Tea by Vanzetti
Summary: Marita makes a confession, and Narcissa tries to be understanding. Part of a series of Harry Potter/XF crossovers, Krycek/Marita.

Title: Afternoon Tea
Author: Vanzetti
Feedback: vanzetti @ populli.net
Website: Parallel Catastrophes
Rating G
Category: HP/XF crossover snippet (Marita Covarrubias, Narcissa
Summary: Marita makes a confession, and Narcissa tries to be
Disclaimer: The X-Files Universe belongs to 1013 Productions, Fox
Television, and Chris Carter. The Harry Potter Universe belongs to
J. K. Rowling and her publishers etc. including Bloomsbury,
Scholastic, and whoever was responsible for those movies. I make no
claim to ownership of previously copyrighted materials, nor do I
make a profit from my use of them.

"A Muggle lover? Really, Marita, don't you think that's taking your
involvement in Parsifal's little conspiracy a bit too far? I hope
you aren't intending to bring him here." Narcissa's gaze flickered
around the room as if she expected strange Muggles to leap out from
behind the velvet curtains and flowered chairs. The idea of Alex in
her sister's sitting room coaxed a smile out of Marita; she could
feel the anger which had prompted her to make the announcement
draining out of her.

"I was hoping to bring him to that party you're planning to throw
for Lucius," she said.

Narcissa flushed. "Please say that that's a joke, darling. You know
how Lucius is."

"Lucius is a xenophobic bore. It would be tolerable if he knew
anything at all about Muggles, but as it is he just looks like an

"If you knew anything about what was going on in the Wizarding
world, Marita, you would realize that you're the one who's mistaken.
Lucius is well-respected in our world." Narcissa stared down her
nose at her sister. "Please don't pick a fight with him this

"That isn't very attractive," Marita said, "the way you're looking
at me."

"Neither is your know-it-all behavior, Marita. Just because you're
an Unspeakable, you think you know everything that's going on. I can
assure you that..." She closed her mouth.

Marita took a sip of tea. Damn. Now she was going to have to attend
Lucius' party, just to see who was there and what Lucius was
planning. And she really couldn't bring Alex, despite her
threats. "I'm sure Lucius is perfectly well-respected, sweetheart. I
just think he's wrong on certain issues."

"Is that your head talking, or your heart?"

"What?" Marita did her best not to laugh; Narcissa's sense of
romanticism would drive her insane one day.

"Well, darling, you must admit that this Muggle lover of yours
changes things.. Your children won't be purebred. And so of course
you're more likely to favor extending the privileges of the
halfbreed and Muggle-born."

The tea Marita was swallowing caught in her throat. When she had
finished coughing, she said, "Children? I'm hardly planning to...
can we talk about something else?"

Narcissa pursed her lips. "I suppose I ought to be glad that you
aren't serious about this Muggle. Perhaps I ought to find you
someone more suitable to bring to Lucius' birthday."

"I'd be grateful if you refrained." She already regretted mentioning
Alex to her sister. At least the very notion of taking a Muggle to
bed would be so disgusting to Narcissa that there was no reason to
discuss all the other ways in which Alex was unsuitable. She could
imagine him glowering in a corner as Narcissa's latest string
quartet played and the house-elves floated the trays of hors
d'oeuvres around the room. Or worse, when most of the guests had
gone and only Lucius' closest companions remained... No. She really
couldn't bring Alex here.

"I only want to help you, darling."

"I know that, Narcissa."

"I know you can't really discuss your work, what you're doing for
Parsifal. But I'm not a fool, Marita, and I can see what it's doing
to you. I just wish that you had something... for yourself."

Marita stared at her sister, Was Narcissa trying to be
understanding? "My work is extremely fulfilling."

Narcissa's nose wrinkled slightly at the word 'work.' "I'm sure it
is." Then her face cleared. "Tell me," she said. "your lover. Is
he... different?"

"What do you mean?" Surely Nacissa didn't mean...

"Well, being with a man who isn't..." She waved her hand. "...Who
can't use charms, and all the rest of it. Do you manage to..."

Marita watched her sister turn pink. "Narcissa, are you asking me
what sex with a Muggle is like?"

"One does wonder, you know."

What kind of lurid novels had her sister been reading, anyway? "The
charms are not as important as you might think."


"That's all we're going to say about it," Marita said firmly. "I
cannot believe that we're having this conversation." It was entirely
too tempting to confide in Narcissa. She had no intention of sharing
the kind of sordid detail Narcissa was interested in, although she
might describe Alex's intensity, the way he focused on her as if she
was the only thing in the universe when they were together. But
Founders knew she wanted someone with whom she could share her
worries for Alex, but she would have to tell Narcissa the reasons
behind her worries: the work he had been forced into, her fears
about Parsifal and his intentions, the violent divisions within the
conspiracy. Those were subjects Narcissa must remain ignorant
of: "Unspeakable" was more than a job description in Marita's world.
She had already said too much.

"You always were a prude, Marita." Narcissa sounded disappointed. "I
wasn't asking for Ministry secrets, you know."

"I know. I..."

"You used to come to me with all your secrets, do you remember?"

"I grew up."

Narcissa sniffed. "It was bound to happen. I suppose there was
nothing either of us could have done about it." She looked Marita up
and down. "That haircut, though. Did you have to, darling?"

She smiled as Marita began to laugh.


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