Of Bonds and Bondings.
Danny looked at the box that had been sent to Speed that night, smiling at it. "Greg needs what sort of help?"
"He's doing his next mastery paper and he's got to integrate the new stuff with what he's found that works. So he wanted a proofread." He shrugged and grinned. "I'm proofreading to make sure it makes sense for him. Then he's got to move on from there and discover something new and worthwhile with it."
"Charming. If you need help let us know. Did he need into our library?"
"Probably could help him," he admitted. "Then again, I'm not so sure Alex's doesn't have everything he needs."
"That is a huge-ass library," Danny agreed. "I could probably do a mastery in there." Speed swatted him but gave him a fond grin. "I know, I'm well out of practice for that."
"Yup, ya think?" Speed said dryly. "How's the new minion?"
"He hates being called that. Stella's been teasing him," he said with a smug look.
"But it's nice someone understands your evil moods?" Speed prompted.
"It's very nice Alex Dumass understands where my mind goes now and then," he agreed happily. "We had a good long ice cream fit over some of our mutual evil thoughts a few weeks back," he offered with a smirk. "We have firm plans if we want to take over the entire universe now. Including sending Tonks back to scare more of it."
Speed blinked. "Huh?"
"Long story. Not allowed to tell. Secret military secrets."
"Uh-huh." Speed stared at him. "Anything you *can* tell us?"
"Well, we found some of the Ancients that got taken from Britain way long ago. We found some of their books too. Well, they did and Alex helped."
"Uh-huh," Speed said more slowly. "Where?"
"Not *here* as in the US?"
"Not here as in Earth. Secret military secrets."
"Oh, shit," Speed muttered, going to get a drink. "Want a beer?"
"No, I've got late shift tonight," Danny called, getting comfortable again. "Remember Tonks?"
"Yup. Metamorphagus." He came back out with his beer and a bowl of pretzels. "Why?"
"She's one who went to scare others."
"Got that part. How?"
Danny pulled something out of his pocket. "Alex said this does not get out of the group." Speed gave him a look. "Meaning the trio, not the full group. Someone besides Greg and Nick need to know over here." Speed nodded. "Gotta promise."
"I pinkie swear," he said dryly, holding out a hand. The small bundle of books was unshrunk and handed over. He looked at the note on top then at him. "You weren't kidding."
"I'm not but we have to know this because someone else has to have the information in case something happens. We're the next biggest library he's ever seen."
"We dedicated a lot of energy and time to the library, therefore we can hide some information in there?" Danny grinned and nodded. "Have you told Tony?"
"I asked him if they had heard about that and he stuck his fingers in his ears and walked off humming."
"That tells me yes and he was freaked out." He opened the first book, browsing the index. He sat up suddenly. "That _Umbricks_ book we saw in History! It said something about these portals!" He looked at Danny, who smirked and nodded. "Oh, shit!" he said, hopping up, putting down both treats, staring at his soulmate. "You're joking."
"Cheyenne Mountain," he said dryly. "Hand to God, they sent Tonks up ta help when they found that's who had stolen the Ancients way back when and found their settlement. They even found house elves."
"Oh fuck me," he said in awe. "But....."
"There's a non-wizard who saw some Thinial, that ancient, pre-Atlantis language that used to drive you and Tony batty, there. There's a lot of that there. Alex ran into them on a dig, then he had to go back to them when he got a whole book in Thinial to decode, because he's one of the best that keeps running into it, so he had ta go back ta Jackson to see if he could help. That's when they made the connection and talked to an ally."
"Friend, comrade.... You can't tell anyone."
"Uh-huh," Speed said again, staring at him. "Do I really want to know?"
"Probably not but you're over the library."
"Good point." He paced while he read. "This is not real." He looked at him. "We need to talk to Tony."
Speed growled and snapped a thought at Tony, getting back another dose of the 'lalala can't hear you' thing he had done to Danny earlier. He picked up something and smiled, then disappeared, landing in the elevator at NCIS. He walked off and hauled Tony up, then walked over and grabbed Gibbs by the hand and walked him off. "I think we'll need you too."
"Speed, I can't," Tony defended.
"Shut up, Alex ran into them."
"Them?" Gibbs asked, letting Speed pull him after him. Speed portkeyed them back to his place, finding Horatio there. "Is this going to be something that the group should know?"
"Mac heard from my head," Danny admitted. "He's ignoring this whole conference, Horatio won't."
"Of course I won't," Horatio agreed. "I already knew. Alex was babbling about it while he was in my cells." He grimaced. "Tony, Gibbs."
"I'm here. Why?" Gibbs demanded.
"Because we're hiding some information in the library," Speed told him. "It appears Alex found out the military's secret project to go to other planets?" Gibbs blinked at that. "Something about the scary one Tonks going to scare the universe?"
"They sent an auror?" Horatio asked. Danny nodded. "Why? All I got was portals and aliens with gold tattoos."
"The aliens with gold tattoos stole some ancients way back when, including the first in Alex's family line," Danny told him. "He ran into Thinial, which is a pre-Atlantis language, Gibbs, on a dig that made him meet with that project. Then he got sent a whole book in Thinial and he had to go back to them, leading to more information about wizards in space and those who had been stolen, including some house elves. We're hiding the information and when I went to talk to Tony about it he stuck his fingers in his ears and walked off humming."
"Did you read _Umbricks_ in History, H?" Tony asked. He nodded slowly. "That deals with that project."
"They reopened it?"
"Yup, then a dig got Alex Dumass sent to the people who're over it to save their butts. Then they had to collaborate again, and then they found more other places, but we've been hiding that some aurors are in space tracking things down and bringing back information and technology. It's going through the Canadian ministry and then back to Britain, but it's a world-wide cooperative initiative at the moment," Tony told him. He looked at his boss. "We've run into them before but not really. We've hinted at the side of the project. Someone there correlated the school in my files with two other wizards who're working over there. Someone outed me so I'm dealing with the issues they're having there. Including translating Tonks into military." He sat down and pouted. "I do not like that project. The aliens can kiss my ass."
"Okay, slower this time," Gibbs demanded. Speed handed him the book. He glanced at it then at him and Danny. "Diary?"
"Journal. Alex's. He's like that."
"That's a good thing in many ways," he decided, reading over it. He frowned, sitting down to read further. He looked at Tony. "When did you run into them?"
"About a year ago," he sighed, looking at him. "One of the wizards had them do a records search through the military database for those of us with the skills so they could be drawn into the project to help." He glared at his boss. "They're still scared of you."
"Good! I'm not losing you to some alien hunting team." He went back to reading but Horatio took the book to look through. He scowled and took it back. "They're coming after my team member."
"We're just hiding it, H," Speed assured him. "That way someone other than Greg and Nick Boyle know over here."
"Can this get you taken?" Horatio asked.
"Only if someone in the project hears they know," Tony quipped. "Then you're going to wake up one morning and they're going to be missing. Because they have big mouths," he said, glaring at Speed and Danny. "I can't come visit you that far away, guys. I sure as hell can't apparate into Cheyenne Mountain!"
"That's where they're doing this?" Gibbs asked dryly. The trio nodded. "Why?"
"Because that's where the know-it-alls are hiding," Tony said blandly, glaring at his boss. "Can we please just hide those and never go near them again?" Danny and Speed nodded. "Good! Please do! I can't apparate all the way out there and if I came to visit they'd take me." He disappeared, going to his apartment to sulk in peace. Stella joined him a while later, giving him a hug, even crawling onto his lap to cuddle. "They're going to get taken and used."
"They won't." She stroked his cheek. "They really won't." He nodded. She shook her head. "No they won't. No military commander ever born or created would ever put up with Danny." He cracked a smile at that. "Really. Even Mac said that. Even Gibbs said that." That got a brighter smile. "Or Speed. Can you see Speed in the military?" He shook his head, giving her a squeeze. "Good." She kissed him on the cheek. "That's better. Wanna help me shop tonight?" He looked at her. "Bra shop even," she teased.
"Only if I can put you in something trashy, yet uncomfortable so your men have to save you from it," he teased back. He put his head on her shoulder when Danny and Speed showed up. "I'm stealing her," he told Danny.
"Mine, wench," Danny said, stealing Stella back to kiss her. She moaned and pinched him, pulling back with a smirk. "But you can save me the torture of bra shopping since I've got late shift."
"Sure." He got up and let Stella drag him back to her favorite place to shop. She had even set up an apparation point near there for the other witches she knew. "Should I be scared?" he joked.
"I hope not." She led him inside. "He's my approval committee." Tony grinned and waved, letting her pick out what she wanted so he could choose something that would make Don and Danny pounce Mac to keep him from hurting her when he pounced. She grinned at him for that thought and winked, holding something up. He shook his head and found something else, earning a look. He smirked and she went to try it on for him.
Speed walked into their new library/hiding place and found the locking cabinet he needed, sliding the books in there and locking it back up, then sealing it with a spell. He turned and found someone in a uniform standing there. "Hey."
"You know DiNozzo."
"I'm Speedle. Of course I know DiNozzo. We're bound." That got a grimace. "Soul bound if you must know. Us and Messer up in New York. Doesn't mean we give a damn about your project. You guys creep us out. I'm under orders from my boss to beat your asses if you try to conscript me and if I can't I'm under heavier orders to make the rest of the universe sorry for trying us and then come home for great sex."
The military guy blinked. "I'm lost."
"We know Dumass."
"Oh!" He nodded. "Storing the information he had?" That got a nod. "Yeah, I'm here about that. You don't want to join?"
"I hate guns. I'm a CSI and I hate guns."
"Fine. We're not at the level of conscription."
"Then how did you get here?"
He held up an envelope, letting Speed take it and sigh, getting him another book. "Why do I need this?"
"It's a language text. It's for your pet nerd."
"We have a few of those." He looked at the note then at him. "Okay. Why send me to *you*?"
Speed smirked. "Because he's one of our trio's evil minions." He waved a hand and reset the portkey with the other one, sending him off. He resealed the library so no one that wasn't already blessed of it could get in then went home to pounce someone. Everyone was gone so he had to settle for the rest of his beer and pretzels, plus a new book he had found. He'd pounce later and let them wipe the idea of aliens using goblin language out of his head.
Ron snuck into Abby's lab, giving her a hug. "From Harry, but I'm sneaking around behind his back."
"I'm a one-wizard sort of girl, Ron," she teased.
"I know that. I need advice."
"Well, I'm not really busy so maybe I can help," she agreed happily, pointing at a stool. "Pull it over and sit. Don't touch anything."
"He already told me that." He pulled the stool over. "Long time ago, someone told me I was going to be a guide."
"Like the book by Sandburg?" Ron nodded. "That's pretty cool. So?"
"I got told I'd be a temporary guide to one, which I guess was Draco since he's got sensory spikes now and then with his emotional surges. They also said I'd be a full guide someday." She nodded and smiled at that. "Unless that's Dawn, that's going to cause a problem, Abby."
"Well..." She considered it. "It might be Dawn."
"It could be. Probably not. His book said it came from prolonged sensory deprivation. She doesn't go into the tombs that much."
"How does Sandburg do it?"
"Not a clue, except he has a lot of problems with some people."
"Oh." She grimaced and looked at her computer then at him again. "Could you do what they're doing?"
"Wouldn't that make me not as effective?"
"That might depend on the person. Because you're not gay, right?"
"No and there's a family curse on the last born son to be fertile." He shuddered. "Even if I was I'd never go that way." He slumped. "Plus they all have to have a lot of patience. You've got to be a bit submissive to their needs and yet strong enough to beat them into submission when they need it. I've got one hell of a temper."
She nodded. "That could be trouble, but again, couldn't that depend on who you get? Maybe you've got a temper because they'll need you to, Ron."
"Maybe," he sighed, looking at her. "I'm still worried."
"It's a good, realistic worry," she assured him. Tony walked in. "Did you know he's going to be like Blair?"
"I had heard that." He gave Ron a hug around the shoulders. "You're you and they'll figure out how to work with you."
"I'm still with Dawn and she's a mite protective, Tony."
"Which could help. They might need you and Dawn as their guide, Ron." He looked confused. "Really. It's been known to happen. Sometimes you need a firmer leash holder." He ruffled his hair. "Now shoo. Gibbs is on his way down. We need Abby's brilliant mind focused."
"Sure. Thanks, Abby." He kissed her on the cheek and Tony nodded for him to disappear from there so he did.
"It is a valid worry," he agreed. "I'll get Blair onto his case to talk about that stuff." He grinned. "Could do him good." She grinned back. "You, my lovely little dark angel, are needed to go over some encrypted stuff McGeek just got sent. He's not here today and we need to know if it's important." She nodded, logging into McGee's email to find it. She frowned. "Mine, Abby. They sent it to me for him." She logged into his email and found it, frowning at it. "Exactly."
"That's definitely an alphabet cypher." She ran it through that search engine, getting a key. Then she sat down to change letters back. When she was done she read it and giggled, handing it over. "There you go."
"Thanks." He read it then shuddered. "Eww." He walked off, going to call McGee from his desk. Gibbs looked over so he let him see the email. "It's me. You got sent an encrypted message to my account. I had Abby unencrypt it for you. Yes, you need it." He hung up. "Family reunions. Eww."
"Some families have those," Gibbs noted, handing it back.
"Not mine fortunately." He waved it when McGee came up. "Good luck with that."
He looked at it and moaned. "Dad," he complained, checking the original message. He nodded, heading back off. "Thanks, the doctor is seeing me in about an hour, boss."
"Always something," Gibbs complained.
Mac looked out at his lovers, seeing them planning something quietly. He mentally groaned and Don grinned at him. "Looks like I'm in trouble," he muttered, going back to his office. It was safer. Lindsey walked in and closed the door. "What's wrong?"
"I'm feeling odd, Mac." She stared at him for a minute. "All four of you?"
"Not originally," he admitted. "Originally it was Danny and Don. Then the bonds were started to help Don and Stella. I got asked to help as a voice of reason."
"So you were in their heads and they made you?"
He looked at her. "There was no 'making me', Lindsey. They offered." And nagged and tempted and drove him insane really. "It was my choice when I was offered." After all, he could have overpowered Stella, couldn't he have? "It was a hard decision." That he had fought for a long time. He could admit to himself he had found himself drawn to Stella years ago. He and Danny had a love/hate thing going on, they had for years. He and Don... Well, it was nice now that he knew. He felt the warm, fuzzy feeling from the trio and Tony, making him smile and shake his head. He sent back a 'get out of my head' to them. He looked at her again, seeing the hesitant look. "They're planning our next vacation."
"That Interpol case?" she asked hesitantly.
"Was Alex Dumass needing help," he admitted. "It was a major theft ring that endangered the world."
"You mean the banks in the world?"
"No, I mean the world with some of the stuff they stole," he said honestly. He stared at her. "I will understand if you want to switch back down there, Lindsey. That's why we sent you down there in the first place. You were having problems dealing with how the team was."
"I remember." She bit her lip then looked at him. "It doesn't make you feel odd that Danny's tied to three others?"
"He's been soul-bound to them since he was thirteen. That's deeper than any marriage." Speed popped in. "Isn't it?" She squeaked and turned, spotting him.
"It is. We're the reason Danny's survived some very nasty crap in his life, Lindsey. Consider Danny, Tony, and I like triplets. We basically are anymore. You weren't here then but Danny nearly went suicidal when I died. Tony held him together and Danny clung to him for a very long time." She slumped and nodded at that. "Now that I'm back, my bitches are better." She blushed. "I never said it wasn't sexual between us. By wizarding law we are now considered triplets. By doing that joining we've created our own family line. Even the old pureblood lines have to respect us for that. If Danny has kids, legally they're my nephew or niece. If I turn Eric into a girl she'll be Danny and Tony's sister-in-law by law. The only thing we never did was file the legal papers."
"That probably would've driven Tony's father insane, if not Danny's," Mac noted dryly.
"We have a sealed set with the Canadians. Someone found out and came down to check us out, make sure it was a true bond. We never *announced* it. Bonds are a fascinating legal subject." Mac's eyes went wide. "Aww, there's my brother-in-law, the shy one," he taunted.
"I'm telling Horatio on you."
"So? He's your in-law too, Mac." He looked at her. Then he looked at Mac. "Would you go talk to my parents for me? They're giving Eric fits."
"I got resurrected."
"Oh. Sure, I can do that." Speed handed over their address. "Phone call?"
"Might help. Or invite them down for the night to talk. Danny should probably come *later* instead of at the beginning. My mother does know."
"Are you going to announce it?"
"We can," he admitted. He thought at his other thirds. They both shrugged. Tony's family was in pieces. Danny's was locked up. "They said they didn't care. We'll discuss it at the next family dinner." He looked at Lindsey. "They were trying to give you an easy out before, Lindsey. Obliviating you too many times can ruin the mind. Personally I think that's what's wrong with Ducky." He shrugged and left again. Though he did get swatted by Tony for that last comment.
Mac smiled at her. "It's an eclectic family."
"I get that. I..I just needed to clarify things to myself." She left.
Mac sent soothing thoughts at Danny but he intercepted her and walked her off to talk to her, being gentle about it for now. Including assuring her that they hadn't forced Mac into it. He shook his head at that thought. The last person who had forced him to do something was a drill instructor. Stella would make a fine one some days but she wasn't one and Danny certainly wasn't.
Speed walked into Horatio's office. "A legal fact just came up and I realized I didn't tell you something."
"You know the bond the trio have?"
"Your trio?" he clarified. He nodded. "Vaguely. Why?"
"You do realize that by law we're considered triplets?"
Horatio leaned back in his chair, shaking his head. "I hadn't." He blinked while he thought then he looked at him. "That's how the Caine family line was founded."
"It was. It was two who bound together because only one could have children," he admitted. "Different sort of bond, theirs was more legal and less invasive."
"Interesting. Are you going to proclaim it?"
"We have sealed papers with the Canadians. They could let it go. Tony's family's not an issue anymore. Neither is Danny's. Mine's going to have a talk with Mac, I asked him to."
"I heard." He smiled. "It's a good idea since I couldn't calm them down."
"Plus he's closer and they liked Danny more anyway," he admitted. "Would it bother you if we did announce it?"
"No," he said, shaking his head. "Though if you turn Eric into a girl again he's going to thump you."
Speed snickered. "It was a for instance, H. Not a plan I have."
"Thank you." He smiled slightly. "If you want to, I can be in-laws with the quad up there and whoever Tony finally settles with."
"Good. Can you explain it to Eric? I get lost in the memories."
"I can do that." He smiled a soft, gentle smile. "I believe it's your day off?"
"It is and I'm going to go bother Tony for lunch." He blew a kiss and disappeared from right there since someone was coming.
Frank leaned in. "It safe?"
"It was before, Frank. Just going over something in the bond."
"I noticed the strange stops for thought you guys have." He walked in and shut the door. "What is going on with that? Wolfe thought it was dangerous."
"Only if I'm caught at the wrong moment," he admitted. "Usually I filter it when I'm doing that, store the messages for later."
"Messages? You're telepaths too?"
"No," he said with a grin. "A long time ago, somewhere in the six hundreds AD...." A book thumped on his desk and he looked at it. "Or earlier," he corrected. "Danny." Frank looked really confused. He sat up. "Way back when, Frank, someone found out how to bind certain people together. Closer than a marriage, they bound their magics together. As research and magical theory went on other charms were usually added in. Charms like communication charms. So I'm in a mind link with them if I want to open myself to it, but I'm not generally telepathic."
"The strange pauses for thoughts," he finished. Horatio nodded. "Is that what Speed has with Danny and DiNozzo?"
"No," he said quietly. "When they were very young teenagers, thirteen, they enacted a different sort of bond. We were just talking about that. They're bound at the soul level. They're basically considered like empathic triplets." Frank frowned, looking confused. "You know twins who are so close they finish each other's sentences?"
"I've met the Weasley boys, yeah."
"You know more than them?" He nodded once. "It's like that only there's three. The bonding they enacted could only be completed if they were perfectly balanced at that point in time. It was to make a force stronger enough to hold the world together by the wording in the books. They were young and decided to use it for boring classes and cheating on a certain test." Frank smiled at that, that was like teenage boys. "By our laws they're considered triplets, the start of a new family line. Any children the group has would be part of that. There's lesser versions of that bond, which is what I'm part of. The triplets soul bond is only Danny, Tony, and Speed. The rest of us are bound with them included in another way. That's where the communications charms come from."
"Like the Weasley boys' thing on their arms?"
"Exactly, only we made ours a bit closer than that, that way we don't have to be in physical contact with the tattoo to activate the bond. Mac is still very loud." Frank chuckled at that. "He can be. He and Tony get scenes mixed up now and then. Speed and Tony do the same so I'm thinking that's a problem specific to Tony. Most of the time it's a good thing. It's...it's comforting to know that you have someone who's always there."
"So for you it's like a really tight marriage with those in the bond thingy. But there's an inner and an outer set of bonds?" Horatio nodded. "Then why wasn't Speed always like this?"
"Because they ended up having to bury theirs due to a very bad headmistress who decided they were bad for doing it, Frank. She tortured them for a bit. She did it to any student who was smart enough to create their own spells. She didn't want anyone more powerful than she was and especially not if they had any sort of leaning toward the dark arts. She spent a long time trying to hinder the trio and stop them. They ended up burying it thanks to her and life, but it was still there. Danny and Tony both nearly followed Speed when he died."
Frank considered it then nodded slowly. "I can get that. We've all seen the twin that followed when their twin died." Horatio nodded. "So, to you it's like you married into a set of very tight triplets."
"It is, but they do like to cuddle now and then and I can't be jealous of that."
"Like twins who share or swap wives," he said dryly.
"Exactly. We don't help them but every now and then the inner trio takes off for some time alone to work on things together. Especially to help Tony since his former girlfriend just came back into his life. His father drove her off."
"Pity. The boy could use a steadying influence." He stood up. "Are you okay with them?"
"I am. I've dated a set of twins that tight in the past, Frank." He snickered. "I did. It was rather odd but decent. This is the same." Frank nodded, leaving it there and going back to his desk. He went to find Eric to talk to him about what Speed had reminded him about, including sharing some of his own family history to put it into context. He even shared the examples Speed had used, making Eric get his devious look on his face as he planned to get him back later. Speed was going to end up paying for turning him into a girl the last time. It had been *fun* but not good for Eric's mind.
Speed sat down across from Tony at the table in the NCIS break room. "You're the one who'd have the most amount of problems if it was found out. Your family would freak."
"Half of them realized it," he assured him. "The others, well, Mom would try to get things back from the will, again."
"Can't we just ship her off or something?"
"I've thought about it. After all, she is doing dark magic most of the time." He ate a bite of his sandwich then looked at it. Speed changed it back. "Thanks." He spit out the former bite. "Danny's having an odd day. Frog with tartar sauce."
Speed checked his own and changed it back too. "They had Lindsey."
"I heard." He ate another bite then changed it back himself and sent some at Danny, who claimed innocence. He watched it change again and mirrored it back onto the person doing it, listening to Stella yelp. It was changed back and he went back to eating before she slipped again. "We need to spend some time at the castle this weekend."
"We do. Do you think Dumass knew about this before he named Danny an adopted heir?"
"I personally think that was protection for us and from his scary aunts."
"Might be right," he admitted, thinking about it. He made sure his sandwich was still okay then finished it. He checked his soda and took a long drink. "Do you think Alex is fully deaged?"
"I don't know," he admitted. "I asked Abby if she could tell. She's thinking about it." He shrugged. "At least we'd know. This does mean that Don's his son-in-law, does he know that?"
"Alex probably does. Don? Maybe." He shrugged. "If they go for the fuller, traditional bond they'll have to take the Dumass ones." He finished his soda, looking at the bottle. "Cherry?"
Tony took a drink of his then nodded. "Yup. Cherry fizz." He sent another thought at Stella, making her sigh and clamp down on her powers. They both ordered her to go wear it out, it was backing up. Danny had it well in hand. He made her go to the park and fly for a bit since it was the off-season. "Now what?"
"Do you want it to get into the open?"
Tony considered it. "That would mean my kids would be both DiNozzos and our family."
"True. Horatio's line started by a pair of women bonding since one couldn't have children."
"It's a strong, odd line." Speed looked at him. "Only one child per generation?"
"H might want kids," he admitted. "We never talked about it. Would they be in the same generation as Ray Junior?"
"Not temporally speaking. Ray's the generation after Gen X'ers. The kid would be the one after his on that path. On the family chart it'd be the same generation."
"Hmm. Have to point that out. Not that I like kids but Horatio and Eric love them and I'll put up with it as long as they change diapers." He felt a brush against his mind from his lover, who assured him it wasn't necessary for him. They could talk about that later. "Anyway," he sighed. "You and Danny have the pureblood thing going, Tony. Danny doesn't really have a problem since all his family's basically gone or distanced itself from him thanks to his parents. You've got to think about the DiNozzo stuff."
"My father knew. It was in the will that he had no onus against me for starting my own line. Mom had no clue what he was saying. She asked the lawyer, who didn't have a clue."
"Huh." He looked at him. "I can have them release it somewhat. Not the names...."
"But that it happened? That would protect the kids if any came to be." McGee came in. "Need an opinion, probie." He came over, sitting on the other side of the table. "You know there's two bonds right?"
"Yup, and you three are soulbound," he agreed. "I went back to my books when I learned about the other one and saw how you three were slowly growing into it."
"Uncovering it," Speed corrected. "Bad headmistress made us."
"So's she now," Tony admitted. "By law, that makes us triplets."
McGee smiled. "That's one scary set of parents then. Are you going to announce it?" Tony shrugged. "How long have you had it?"
"Thirteen," Speed admitted.
"Then let it be known generally so people don't flock to you like gurus."
"Don Flack gets that for the in-laws," Tony said with a grin. "You think Gibbs would complain?"
"He already knows," he pointed out. "You told him about all this stuff, right?" Tony nodded. "Including the dual layer?" Speed nodded. "Then why would he mind? It's the start of a strong family line, guys. Even if Dumass is hiding you three."
"That's true, that would make us adopted by Dumass as well," Speed admitted, looking at him.
"True. Which means we'd all have to do the Dumass clan binding and marry at the castle." They shared a look but shrugged, they didn't care. They looked at him. "Think it'd bother things around here?"
"Only if you got pilgrims wanting to know how you had done it or people asking you to solve things. Remember, that is one problem."
"Point. Letting it out generally without letting the family members be known would be for the best."
"We should talk to Alex first," Tony noted. "Make sure he realizes."
"I don't think that there's a problem there," McGee pointed out. "He's the biggest smart ass in the world, isn't he? He's also got one of the bigger libraries?" They both nodded. "Did we think he adopted Danny to protect him?"
"Maybe," Speed admitted. He pulled out his phone and called Alex's cellphone. "Hey, dad." He grinned. "Yup, in that sense." He listened to what he said. "He did know. He said he could see the bond."
"Cool." He listened through Speed, hearing what he said. Danny sent back a 'go for it'. Tony nodded that he agreed. "We can."
Speed smiled. "If that's what you want, Alex. Are you sure you want two more grown sons?" He smiled. "It would protect us and get the scary aunts off your back," he admitted. "Thanks, man." He hung up and looked at him. "He was doing it to give the new family line some stability."
"Which is nice of him. Also it'd make Gringotts have a lot less paperwork."
McGee smiled. "Have fun with that, guys." He went back to his desk.
Tony came out a few minutes later, after Speed had left. "Boss?" Gibbs looked up. He wrote out the announcement and handed it over. "Can you proof that for us?"
Gibbs leaned back while he read then he looked at him. "Huh?"
"By law, Speed, Danny, and I are considered triplets after what we did when we were younger," he said quietly. "The inner bond."
Gibbs nodded, going back to his reading. Then he handed it back. "Odd spelling."
"With how Alex Dumass adopted Danny he's over us too. That means letting his family barrister admit it to the world."
"Will it cause you problems here?"
"Only if we get pilgrims wanting to know how we did it."
"You'd better not," he warned.
"I'm not planning on it, boss."
"Good. If that's what you want to do, go for it. As long as it doesn't impact your cases here."
"Thanks, boss." He went to email that to Harry's email. He could print it off for Alex to hand over. Alex had volunteered to shelter them. It was what fathers did.
Harry handed Alex the email ten minutes later. "From the insane ones."
"With what they did, they're considered triplets and founders of a new line," Alex said, making Ron choke. "Usually bonds were done to help when a wife couldn't have children. She'd bond herself to the mother she and her spouse chose." He read it over and nodded. "Oddly worded but we can fix that." He looked around. "Draco, can you get the family barrister here, babe?"
"Of course. What nasty did you trip over this time," he sighed, coming out of the office. He took the notice then looked at him. "That means we've adopted all three of the trio?" Alex nodded. "You knew that?"
"I can see the bonds, Draco. You never did a power sensing on them."
"Maybe I will the next time they're over," he muttered as he went to call the family barrister and hand that over. "Here, from the adopted triplet sons."
"Triplets?" Draco nodded. He looked it over then at him. "Who had prior knowledge?"
"They went to New York's school so maybe the Canadians? They probably don't want their names bandied about but Alex adopted one to protect him."
"Adopting one out of a bond like this adopts the rest," he sighed, going to find that paperwork and see what sort of bond it had been. His assistant found information on both and he sent a pointed owl note to Alex about that. He got it back later that night with a simple 'I know I adopted the whole family as mine. The rest are in-laws'. He sighed and put the announcement into the Daily Prophet the next day.
Alex got woken up by a poke from a tiny finger. "What, Me?" he mumbled. She was the only house elf in the entire family that would dare wake him up.
"Aunts want Alex for breakfast or else am skinning Alex."
"Fine. Find me something to put on." He got out of bed, putting on the pajama bottoms and t-shirt, plus socks she found him, heading through the floor. He flopped down in his usual chair, taking his tea and blinking wearily at his aunts. "I only got to bed at two. What?" he complained.
"Work or Draco?" his father asked.
"Work. Library research. I fell asleep on top of the book again." He sipped more of his tea, blinking. "What?"
"You adopted one of them?" his father prompted.
"Yeah, and I knew then, dad. They need protecting. Besides, who else am I going to leave the blasted library to?"
"That is a point," Aunt Cordy noted. "You've definitely tied this family to some powerful lines, Alex."
"I still loathe children." He gave her a look. "If you want me to have kids, have someone have kids for me and raise them. I don't like kids. Kids annoy me. I get hives from kids. Even the ones I babysit now and then. That's all I can stand of kids."
They all sighed and nodded. "We know, son," his father soothed. "You do realize they're part of their own family line?"
"Which we linked into so they have a stronger base. After all, not like they want kids."
"Good point," his father admitted, thinking about it. "Why only Danny?"
"Baseline move and he needed the protection with the Vineese having taken his family for breaking the covenant. It let him have a more stable base to rebuild from. Plus I did know then, the same as I figured out it was suppressed at that time. They got that cleared up and I've mentored them back into a stable place. Plus helped with the in-law situations. Also, if any of the three of them have children it would protect them more and give them options for the kids." He finished his tea and a house elf made him more when he held out his cup. "Thanks, Honey." He sipped and nodded so she went back to fussing over his aunts' plates. "Interestingly enough, the Caine family legacy was started by a breeding bond."
"That is interesting," his father admitted. "I've often thought of doing that to you, son."
"Go right ahead, Dad."
"Fine." He looked at him then at his sisters-in-law and aunts. They all shrugged. "What benefits were you extending to them?"
"The same as the other adopted kid, Dawn, gets." He yawned and leaned back to stretch. "It's not really a problem, they don't want more than access to the castle for work and the library. Sometimes Stella likes to come watch the unicorns. She and Abby come together usually. This way they're all protected and nothing can hurt that bond. The same as me joining into the Bane's bond means that I basically joined them as a sibling, but they never registered that bond."
"Good point," his father admitted, seeming a bit less happy. "It is stretching the family quite a lot."
"Dad, not like we're going to have to pay them in the wills," he complained. "The trio was to protect them and give them a stable base to work from. Nothing more. They're not after the money I've gathered over the years."
"We did have some."
Alex looked at him then shook his head. "By the time the plague hit we were seriously starting to fall in wealth, dad. Within another two generations we would've been poor. Almost none of the family added to it."
"You've added a lot," Draco noted as he came out of the floo. "You also left the connection open." He took a kiss then sat down. "We know it was unorthodox but it was necessary for them to be protected. They're too strong not to and I'm betting that only the Banes jointly doing a spell is stronger." Alex shook his head. "No?"
"Nope. There's stronger." He looked at his father again. "Why else are we having breakfast?"
"We haven't seen you in months, son," he said patiently. "Neither has your family."
"I've written to them," he said, looking confused. He looked at Draco. "Didn't I?" He nodded, sipping the tea the house elf got him. "I was there at the christening and blessing too, dad."
His father sighed. "Son, we would like you to take more responsibility for the family things."
"Then have more kids," he said bluntly. "I'm happy with my life. I'm still trying to figure out if my body clock thinks it's ninety or not." He finished his last piece of bacon. "I've got plenty of things to do without making Draco do more of the family's books. He's already doing most of it."
"You are?" one of the aunts asked.
"I'm the heir's spouse," he said dryly. "It's my duty, correct?" Alex and his father both nodded. "Then of course I am. Though the family budget is a wreck at the moment. I'm going to standardize the forms he was using fairly shortly. Then I'm going to make him finish his inventory," he called when Alex wandered off.
"Yes, dear." He blew a kiss. "Going back to bed now." He disappeared, heading back to the floo port. He wandered down into one of the catacombs, finding his working bed down there. He curled up in the cold sheets, pulling the thick comforter around him and falling back asleep. It'd be a good few hours before anyone found him again, that way he could finally rest.
Draco looked at them. "Are there other concerns?"
"You're getting your inheritance next year, Draco," Aunt Cordy reminded him. He nodded. "How are you going to deal with that?"
"That's why there's goblins."
"Good point," Alex's father agreed. "Back in our former days we took a much more hands-on approach with it. It cost more for them to manage it for us."
"Yes, but there were also more wealthy families back then," Draco pointed out. "In the intervening time we've had massive deficit and economic depression. The only family I know that came through that without losses was the Weasley clan, mostly because they didn't have anything before then," he admitted. "I would prefer that we not be living on top of a storehouse."
Aunt Cordy looked confused. "A storehouse at the castle?"
"There's ten or twelve catacombs," her new spouse said, Alex's father, patting her on the hand. "Alessandra made two or three of her own."
Draco snickered and shook his head, creating a virtual map in the air. "That's what the area under the mountains look like. Plus there's the catacomb under the castle itself and the one under the bay. Speaking of, we've got to finish up that ship's stuff and do something with that." He made a note with his wand. Then he made another one and looked at them. "Wouldn't it be more prudent to move the aunt's jewelry collection back here?"
"It's family based. Any female in the family can borrow the pieces," Alex's father said gently. Draco shrugged at that. "Any news on your mother, dear?"
"Not yet. We have found out that her portkey was stolen. We've tried any number of tracking spells. The bank is about to declare her officially dead. Personally I think there's something a bit darker going on but I can't be sure what." He finished his breakfast. "I should probably go track down my mate. Do we need anything from the castle today? If not, I'm going to finish his research project for him."
"Is anything in the storehouses coming here?" Aunt Cordy asked. "Jewelry or anything?"
"We're still cataloging into unholy and things. I doubt you want anything cursed to come here?" She shook her head quickly. "If there's something to be released it'll be next year most likely." He pushed back. "I'm talking Alex into getting rid of some of it. There's a lot of unnecessary detritus lying around down there. There's probably more books too," he said grimly, making the aunts laugh. "You didn't hear that we had to add on a second library?" That stopped that and he smirked and nodded. "Exactly. Perhaps Alex and I are going to go on vacation soon." He headed back through the floo, going to their kitchen. "Where is my bastard mate?"
"Bed in storage cavern sixteen," Me said quietly, looking at him. "Alex sir is napping, Master Draco."
"That's fine. Let him. I'm going to the library. Let the others wake up on their own but get Potter up so he makes it to practice." She nodded and went to do that while Draco went to look at the books of collections the family had. The jewelry one was now full of black ink. Only a few entries were in the red ink that denoted them being outside the family's control. He made a list of the missing objects in that and the art book, sending them to the ousted duo in Holland. If they were with Justinius they'd be listed as missing since he had been expelled for demon summoning. If not, maybe he knew where they were. Once the letter was sent he got to work on his project with Weasley, a large trunk of jewelry that was their payment from the last set of jobs.
to part 37: