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Title: Immorality
Pairing: Lily/Bellatrix
Prompt: [livejournal.com profile] interhouse_fest: Lily chooses to stand aside when the Dark Lord comes to kill her son, and instead of killing her, he brings her to his headquarters as a 'gift' for his most faithful servant.
Rating: Hard R
Word Count: 2 300
Summary: Lily stood aside when the Dark Lord told her to. It was a mistake, and one that it would only be right for her to pay for.
Warnings: Psychological trauma, murder, captive situation, implied non-con, child death

Lily spent a great deal of her early life contemplating details of morality. It was not an obsession, not quite, but she did think on the matter often, and she came to conclusions about what was right and what was not that she promised to herself that she would never break. She put the safety of others before her own and she made it her work to protect people. She joined the Order of the Phoenix to best uphold these morals. And for a long time, she did not break them.

But when she did, she broke them in the most terrible way that she could ever have imagined.

"Stand aside, you silly girl, stand aside," the Dark Lord had told her when she stood before her child, the only thing protecting him, and she had been forced to choose starkly between life and death – a simple, clean decision with no shades of grey. Stand aside and live. Stay in place and die.

And she made the wrong choice when she stood aside.

Lily shouldn't have done it.

She should have exhibited bravery, proper Gryffindor bravery – even more than that, she should have exhibited proper human decency. A good, moral woman would not have stood aside. A good, moral woman would have tried to save her baby's life.

And Lily hadn't even tried.

So perhaps Lily was not a good, moral woman at all, because when the Dark Lord, wand raised, told her to stand aside, she did.

As soon as she had stepped out of the way, as soon as she stopped shielding her baby, she regretted her choice. As soon as she moved, she knew that she had broken her moral code and that now, her baby was going to be the one to pay for it.

If she could have taken back that action, that one little moment where she stepped out of the Dark Lord's way and granted him access to her baby, she would have done it in a heartbeat. Even before she had stepped entirely out of the way, she regretted it, but it was already too late for her child.

"No!" she cried desperately, clawing out at him, but the Dark Lord had raised his wand. Harry – darling little Harry, so innocent, never did anything wrong, never did anything to account for my cowardice – let out one sudden, desperate sob, then the Dark Lord said, "Avada Kedavra!" and there was a horrible flash of brilliant green light, and then everything was silent.

Lily screamed. She grabbed at the edge of the crib in which she had placed her son and scrabbled at the blankets. They were still warm from the heat of Harry's body, but when her hand closed around her baby's arm, she could feel his skin already going cold beneath her fingers. A pained cry escaped her lips. She collapsed upon the ground, arms draped over the edge of the cradle. She couldn't bear to look at the Dark Lord – the man who had murdered her child – and she did not care. She did not care how vulnerable she was making herself before him. If he cared to kill her now, it would not matter. She would not care. Her own death meant nothing, if her husband and son were already dead…

"Stand up," the Dark Lord told her.

Lily turned her head and glared up at him challengingly. How did he dare to speak to her – to give her orders? It would have been more merciful of him to kill her.

"Stand up," he repeated. There was a note of annoyance, even danger, in his voice, and Lily was gripped with a mad and maddening urge to laugh. Did he believe that he could intimidate her with his tone now? Did he really believe that he had anything left with which to threaten her? What would he do if she did not stand for him? Would he kill her?

Oh, she prayed that he would.

"Stand!"

"Kill me!" she screamed at him. Her voice rose in pitch and broke, but she did not care. She did not curb the hysteria in her tone. "I will not stand for you! Kill me – I would sooner die than show a man like you any sort of respect!"

"Oh, but it would be a tragedy to kill a pretty girl like you," he said, voice suddenly going soft. His tone made Lily want to sob with frustration. He was mocking her, teasing her, with her child dead in the cradle…

"I have nothing more to live for!" she snarled at him.

"Nonsense." He sounded so disgustingly amused by the whole matter. "You have plenty to live for. You are just a girl, your whole life ahead–"

"Don't mock me!" she screamed. "You've killed my husband – my son – kill me too! What else could you want from me?"

He laughed softly, and the sound sent chills through Lily's body.

"I don't want anything more from you," he told her. "But, you see, I did promise that if you did the proper thing and did stand aside, I would bring you back with me. I have a follower who thinks that you will make a lovely pet."

Lily let out one more strained sob as his hand – the hand that had taken the lives of her son and husband – wrapped around her wrist and he Disapparated with her.

Lily squeezed her eyes shut and willed herself not to stumble when she felt her feet hit the ground again. She stayed as still as she could, and only when she heard the Dark Lord proclaim "It is done," did she open her eyes.

She was standing in an ornate and unfamiliar hall, and before her was a table at which a group of men – and one woman, hood pulled low over her face – sat breathlessly, staring at her and the Dark Lord. Lily felt strangely and dreadfully self-conscious, as if she was on stage, all though she should have had no reason to feel so. After all, why should their gaze perturb her? It should not matter what they thought of her, so why did she suddenly feel so compelled to be presentable and look dignified for them?

There was silence among the men – the Death Eaters – while they took in her appearance, and then one let out a wordless shout of what Lily could only imagine was pride at the Dark Lord's victory. It made her wince and shy away from them. The other men joined in, and within moments, the entire hall was full of the sounds of cheering. Lily glanced up at the Dark Lord, who was watching the excitement with a calm and mildly amused expression. After a time – a few minutes of cheering and joy – he held up his hand and the sounds of celebration died.

"A moment of silence, if you will," he said, all sneering, false sincerity. "For the lives lost. For all those who died so nobly among our ranks and our enemies'. They have fought nobly. May there be no more losses."

The Death Eaters all fell silent instantly at their Lord's command, though snickering and proud murmurs continued to echo through the hall. Lily wanted to scream –you monster, how can you speak like that after you killed my child? – but she remained quiet. Her throat felt frozen.

"Bellatrix," the Dark Lord said after a moment, breaking the silence, and the one woman at the table rose immediately. She pushed back her hood and her dark hair cascaded around her shoulders. She pushed it back and looked eagerly at the Dark Lord, cheeks flushed and hooded eyes alight with excitement.

"My Lord?" she asked breathlessly, stepping towards him. He raised a hand to beckon her closer, and when she reached him, he lay that hand gently upon her cheek. Her whole body quivered with excitement at his touch and Lily averted her eyes, sickened.

"You have done so well for me, Bellatrix, for so long," he said, and the near-tenderness in his voice was more frightening to Lily than all his anger could ever have been. "And the Dark Lord rewards those who have done well – so here, on the night of our victory…" He grasped Lily by her arm and dragged her closer to Bellatrix, "have her. Do with her as you will."

He pushed her towards Bellatrix, who caught her by her shoulders and gasped with excitement. Her nails dug, claw-like, into Lily's shoulders and then she gripped Lily's jaw and turned her head back and forth rather roughly, examining her.

"She is so lovely, my Lord," Bellatrix breathed, and her voice trembled with excitement. "I thank you – I thank you for such a lavish reward–"

"A rich reward is nothing less than you deserve for your years of service," the Dark Lord told her. If Lily had not known who he was, she would have been quite sure that he was speaking warmly to her. Sickening.

"And now," he continued, turning away from Lily and Bellatrix and addressing the rest of the hall, "we must celebrate. This night marks our victory more thoroughly than you can know – Lucius, fetch us drinks, and Bellatrix, if you wish to take your… pet… upstairs…"

Bellatrix glanced between the Dark Lord and Lily, then dropped into a crude and haphazard curtsey. "Yes, my Lord," she said, voice thick with emotion, and then she pulled Lily out of the hall.

When the two women were alone, Lily broke down into heaving sobs. She could not stop thinking of the feeling of her son's skin, cooling against her hand…

"Don't cry." Bellatrix stopped and glared at Lily with an expression like a petulant child. "I don't like my pets to cry."

"Kill me," Lily begged her. They were the only words she could remember how to form. "Kill me, have mercy on me and kill me!"

Bellatrix tilted her head, then took Lily by her wrist and continued to lead her up the stairs. There was confusion flickering in her eyes and Lily's heart beat a little faster – she imagined that Bellatrix would kill her, and then she could be reunited with her son and husband in Heaven… oh, what a mercy that would be; it would be enough to absolve Bellatrix of all her other crimes, in Lily's mind.

"Now, why ever would a pretty girl like you want to die?" Bellatrix still sounded oddly girlish, and she pouted like a child who had been denied what they wanted. She pointed her wand at the lock of a door and when it opened, she led Lily in and pressed her firmly onto her back on the bed. Lily didn't protest. Bellatrix could do whatever she pleased to her, it wouldn't matter, so long as she killed her when she was done.

"My husband is dead," Lily whispered. "My son is dead."

Bellatrix locked the door and flicked her wand again. Ropes slithered out of the tip and twined around Lily's wrists, pulling her arms up above her head. Lily sighed, resigned – just let Bellatrix have her way with her, then she'll kill you. Surely, she'll kill you. And it won't matter how much she hurt you first.

"Oh, yes…" Bellatrix slung one leg over Lily and straddled her, looking down at her. "I remember the Dark Lord telling us that you were the mother of the boy he needed to kill. I would have thought that he would want to keep you for himself…" She trailed one finger down Lily's cheek, and Lily winced away automatically. "Perhaps he didn't want to stain himself with a girl like you. Mudblood." She spat in Lily's face, and Lily closed her eyes, willing herself not to cry anymore. It was stupid to cry over being spat on when her son and husband…

"So I suppose it isn't really any sort of surprise that you're all upset," Bellatrix continued, matter-of-factly. "But it's a little silly, I think. They're dead… you should not even think of them anymore."

Lily stared up at her with abject revulsion. She knew that the Death Eaters prided themselves on being without human weaknesses like ideals of love and loyalty to anyone but the Dark Lord, but this

"You are heartless!" she spat. "Just kill me – have your way with me and kill me, but don't pretend that you know anything of what I feel! You have never knownwhat it was to lose a child!"

Bellatrix's eyes flashed dangerously. Lily felt a slight twisting in her stomach and she wondered whether she had made a terrible mistake by saying that. Bellatrix leaned in over her until her face was inches from Lily's.

"I was going to kill you nicely, Mudblood," Bellatrix hissed. "I was going make things easy. But if you're going to say such things to me…"

"I'm sorry," Lily whispered automatically. What had she done? She had, if anything, expected that Bellatrix would relish being told that she was heartless. It was a compliment to a Death Eater, surely.

"I've got an idea, Mudblood," she continued, and her hand wrapped tightly around Lily's throat. "As you don't want me to pretend to know about you, I think it would be best if you didn't pretend to know about me either. Perhaps," she added, digging her nails in tightly, "if you are very good and keep quiet for me, my little pet, Iwill kill you eventually…" Her voice softened and she leaned down so that her lips were mere inches from Lily's and her breath felt hot against her cheek, "But until then, I think, it would be better if you just keep your mouth shut and don't try to talk to me."

)O(

Fin

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