Listen, Harry Potter AU. Like third year or fourth with Tony and Bucky? Something happens and they meet and they get together? Up to you what houses, though Tony could easily be Ravenclaw, or slytherin, and Bucky could be Hufflepuff, or Gryffindor? Thanks!
Here’s the thing: I have been waiting my entire life for this AU!! (I’m exaggerating. Mostly because I’ve been in the HP fandom a lot longer than in the MCU…) Also I can picture almost every character, and especially Tony, in EVERY house which makes this choice very difficult. Full discloser, I’m going with tiny Slytherin!Tony and bulky Hufflepuff!Bucky purely for my own amusement. Please enjoy!
Also tagging @briefpaperexpert because we were talking about HP/MCU Xovers not too long ago. Not what I had in mind back then, but still :)
Warning: Bullying. Inter-house-animosities. Howard’s A+ Parenting.
The problem with Tony–well, one of the problems with Tony, if you asked Howard, which you really shouldn’t do–isn’t that he’s a Slytherin, it’s that he is tiny.
Actually, because we all know you’ll ask Howard anyways, being a Slytherin is also a problem. As far as that man’s concerned, nobody who isn’t a proud Ravenclaw is ever going to accomplish anything in his life. Unless you’re a reckless Gryffindor named Steve Rogers, then you can do no wrong. Which is not cool at all. Seriously, the guy has vanished one Dark Lord, it’s not like he’s Merlin’s secret heir or something. Everyone really needs to chill out.
But the point is, you can’t be a tiny Slytherin with fluffy hair you aren’t allowed to cut–lest your beloved mother gives you the Eyes of Disappointment–and a serious case of social awkwardness in a post Dark Lord world. It’s like getting a ‘Bully me please, I’m too small to hit back’ stamp on your forehead. That he’s a year younger than everyone else probably doesn’t help his case either.
Not fun. Not fun at all.
Tony is a Stark though, he’s not going to let a couple of petty children drag him down. At least that has been Howard’s advice on the situation–if you can call it advice at all. It’s definitely not helpful advice, though Tony knows better than to point that out.
He also knows better than to complain about his transfiguration essay being ripped to pieces by that asshole Rumlow, who thinks anyone not Gryffindor is scum he’s allowed and supposed to spit on as often as possible. That doesn’t stop him from opening his big mouth, because Tony’s never been good at taking things while lying down. Unless he’s been stunned beforehand. Which has happened alarmingly often.
By the time he makes it into class, he’s five minutes late, has no homework to show for and no explanation to give either. (Like everybody doesn’t know what’s going on, but does that stop his fellow Slytherins from blaming him for the 10 points Professor Hill docks him? Of course it doesn’t. Common sense isn’t as common as you’d think around here, Tony thinks bitterly, even as he accepts his detention without complaint.)
Detention isn’t so bad anyways. Keeps him occupied at least, considering that most of the homework is a joke–genius here, and hopefully the only thing he’s inherited from his father–and he doesn’t have a lot of friends to spend his free time with. If you can count the scary librarian Miss Potts a friend, that is.
Tony kind of likes detention actually. Sharing a dorm with four other guys–who’s only common interest seems to be their dislike of the ‘Stark kid’–means that cleaning the trophy room at night is a rare opportunity for some quiet, far away from other people.
Only when Tony gets to the trophy at 8pm sharp–his mother has never tolerated tardiness–he isn’t alone. And he’s not- he’s not easily scared, alright, but the guy standing besides Professor Hill is a head taller than him and anything can happen once they’re left alone and Tony’s just tired, wasn’t prepared for this, can feel his heart racing painfully fast.
He barely hears a word of Professor Hill’s usual speech, has been on the receiving end often enough to be able to recite it by heart anyways, too busy staring at the Hufflepuff student with the bruise on his cheek and the stubborn glare. He’s clearly not happy to be here and Tony has a hard time to keep the sudden wave of dizzying panic at bay.
Things don’t tend to end well for him, when the people around him are upset.
When Professor Hill leaves them to it and the Hufflepuff finally–already–turns his attention to Tony, he’s confident he blacks out for a second.
“-you want?” the Hufflepuff–alright, fine, Bucky Barnes, let’s not pretend Tony doesn’t know exactly who he’s dealing with here–asks.
It takes Tony’s brain a couple of seconds to catch up and realise he’s supposed to answer.
“What?” he blurts, a little confused and a lot worried.
“Which side do you want?” Barnes repeats, a furrow between his eyebrows.
“Uh, left?” Tony points hesitantly.
Barnes stares. “That’s right.”
“I knew that!”
Merlin, this is mortifying. Barnes is chuckling now at least, which is good, probably. Better than anger at least.
They get to work then, Tony on the left–the right one this time–and Barnes on the right side of the room. It’s quiet for a bit, and Tony easily slips into the routine of the movements, lets his mind wander while he polishes trophy after trophy.
Barnes breaks the comfortable silence eventually, and not with a push or a shove like Tony’s half expecting him to, but with a simple question. In retrospect, he should have seen it for the trap it was.
“What did you do to get detention anyways?” Barnes asks.
And because Tony is an inexcusable idiot, is distracted and not really thinking about it, he is honest. He really needs to learn to work on that, he’s a Slytherin for Merlin’s sake! Where’s the fakeness and the amazing lying skills he’s been promised?
“I lost my essay to Rumlow’s pathetic desire to feel better about his sad little life by ruining mine.”
It’s only after the words are already out that Tony’s mind catches up with his mouth and he freezes. Shit. This was definitely not what he is supposed to say. Despite the different houses Rumlow and Barnes are in the same social circle–that circle being the all-amazing Steve Rogers’ fan club–and this can only end ugly.
Slowly Tony pirouettes on his heels until he’s facing Barnes who’s staring at him with a strange expression on his face.
“What are you talking about?”
Well, in for a sickle, in for a galleon and all that. “He thought it would be funny to rip my essay to pieces,” Tony shrugs like it’s no biggie, like he hasn’t worked for three hours on that paper because for once the topic was actually interesting, “Professor Hill didn’t agree.”
Barnes is looking more and more outraged causing Tony to sink more and more into himself. Why did he have to open his big mouth anyways? They were doing fine, he might have made it through this detention without-
“Rumlow is an asshole,” Barnes growls–wait, what? “I didn’t know he was that kind of asshole though.”
He doesn’t ask why Tony didn’t tell on Rumlow, at least, which he is thankful for. Just shakes his head, grumbles something under his breath that Tony doesn’t quite catch.
Whatever. “It’s fine,” Tony shrugs.
“It’s not,” Barnes fires back with an intense conviction that catches Tony by surprise. “And I sure hope you know that.”
Tony blinks. “I guess?”
For some inexplicable reason that causes Barnes to roll his eyes and mutter, “Dear Merlin, not another one. Why is it always me?” which Tony should probably be upset about.
It’s hard though, when Barnes spends the rest of the evening entertaining both of them with fun stories about the things he’s done to get in trouble, which leads them to the impossibly righteous punk that’s Rogers–according to Bar-Bucky, he’s allowed Tony to call him Bucky–which leads to an intense discussion about the merit of pumpkin juice.
Privately, Tony wonders if this is what having friends feels like.
The really strange thing though, is that it doesn’t end there. Things don’t go back to normal after their detention ends. Suddenly Bucky is greeting Tony in the halls, walking with him when they head the same way, invites him into his study group–which, as Tony quickly learns, is not actually a group that studies–and it’s really weird. In a nice-kind-of-great way.
Bucky’s friends are a freakish mixture of scary and sweet, and Tony isn’t sure if they actually like him or just have accepted him as the stray puppy Bucky’s picked up one day–but he doesn’t mind terribly much. They smile at him and share their sweets with him and let him go on about how the latest potion recipe is actually not the most efficient one.
Also Bucky keeps spending time with him, even when his friends aren’t around. Tony isn’t even going to pretend he doesn’t soak up the attention of the other boy because that would just be a waste of time and energy.
Because Bucky is great. He’s even greater when he takes the ribbing for ‘hanging out with the undersized snake’ with a deceptively friendly smile and a mean Bat-Bogey Hex. Not that Tony needs someone to defend him, but that doesn’t keep the sappy warmth in his chest away when someone does.
All is well. Better than well even.
Until Bucky asks Tony to the Yule Ball and Tony startles so badly, he spills ink all over his parchment–and really, why does it always have to be his transfiguration essay?
Tony doesn’t say yes exactly, but it’s strongly implied in the blushing, stuttering, wide-eyed mess the question has turned him into.