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HARRY POTTER

AND THE BOUND PRINCE

Book One: THE BOUND PRINCE Series by Slashpervert and Sayingsorry_hh

Summary, Notes & Copyright


Summary: In HBP, there is a pivotal moment where things could have gone very differently for Harry and Draco. In the bathroom sixth year, Draco is upset that Harry has caught him crying and throws a hex. It escalates and ends in blood, with Harry nearly killing Draco by accident. In this story, instead, unvoiced attraction to Harry motivates Draco to take a chance and kiss him. Once sparked, their mutual desire and exploration becomes the driving force in the alternative ending to the series. Draco's "mission" from Voldemort turns out to be more complex than that presented in canon and their solution even more difficult. Warnings: Language, Explicit M/M Sex, Anal, Oral, Rimming, Dom/Sub, Dubious Consent, Monogamy, Jealousy, Humiliation, Pain, Violence, Blood and Character Death. Notes: AU from HBP, written before the release of DH. Section of italics direct quotes from HBP. Betas: Our gratitude for the editing and proof-reading help of Nefernat, Godmoma, TheBostonDyke, Nomeci, Nathaniel and LBaum. Copyright 2007 Slashpervert and Sayingsorry_hh. The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author(s). Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Names, character, places and incidents either are products of the authors imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead is entirely coincidental. This is a work of parody, as defined by the Fair Use Doctrine. Any similarities, without satirical intent, to copyrighted characters, or individuals living or dead, are purely coincidental. This work has not been endorsed by J.K. Rowling, Scholastic Books, Warner Brothers, or any of the other holding copyright or license to the Harry Potter books or movie. No connection is implied or should be inferred. This is not a commercial work. The authors receive no financial gain from its production or distribution. It is available without charge. This work is intended for adults only. Some of the content of this fiction is graphically violent and/or sexual. It is intended for readers age eighteen or over and anyone underage is prohibited from reading.

CHAPTER ONE

Hex Me or Kiss Me
May 1 Outside the bathroom, Harry pressed his ear against the door. He could not hear anything. He very quietly pushed the door open. Draco Malfoy was standing with his back to the door, his hands clutching either side of the sink, his white-blond head bowed. "Don't," crooned Moaning Myrtle's voice from one of the cubicles. "Don't ... tell me what's wrong ... I can help you ." "No one can help me," said Malfoy. His whole body was shaking. "I can't do it ... I can't ... it won't work ... and unless I do it soon ... he says he'll kill me ...." Harry's eyes widened as he realised just what Malfoy was doing. He was crying, actually crying. Harry felt like he couldn't move. He simply stared at Malfoy from the door. Draco shut his eyes, letting his chin fall to his chest. Tears continued to stream, but he couldn't look at himself anymore. "I am dead." Harry was unsure of what to do. He could just walk away, forget about what he had seen, but for some strange reason his feet wouldn't move. He was terrified that Malfoy would see him. Harry knew that he would never like to be caught crying, especially by one of his enemies. He felt the entire situation would be very awkward if Malfoy were to turn around. Draco leant forward, turning on the cold tap and cupping his hands under the flow. He splashed the soothing water on his face, trying to wash away any evidence of this weakness. Harry came to himself then. He took a quiet, tiny step backward, hoping that he wouldn't draw Malfoy's attention, but .... "What are you doing here?" came the voice of Moaning Myrtle. Harry froze again and his eyes shot over to where Malfoy was standing. Draco looked quickly up into the mirror and saw Potter at the

HARRY POTTER AND THE BOUND PRINCE

door. He scowled and turned, hand on his wand, but not yet casting. "What do you want, Potter?" Harry immediately went defensive. "This is the loo. What do you think I want?" he said harshly. He tried to make sure that nothing indicated he had heard Malfoy crying at all. He stepped fully into the room and began to make his way over to one of the cubicles, despite the fact that he didn't actually have to go. Draco frowned, not quite believing Potter. Unable to think of anything better to do, he crossed his arms over his chest and leant back against a sink. Harry looked at Malfoy out of the corner of his eye as he crossed the room. Was Malfoy just going to stand there? Harry reached the stall and closed its door behind him. "You should tell him to leave," Myrtle said to Draco haughtily. "He doesn't have any business being in here. He probably only came to give you grief." "I can handle Potter," the blond told her. Harry ignored Myrtle and forced himself to piss a little. He found it quite strange that Malfoy had been talking to the ghost and crying in the first place. "Well, of course you can handle him," Myrtle continued in a sympathetic voice. "But you shouldn't have to deal with that right now." She looked like she wanted to pet Draco's hair. Draco nodded. "I know, but leave us for now. Okay?" the blond told her. Myrtle's eyes narrowed slightly, and she put her hands on her hips. "Well, fine," she said huffily. "If you don't want me here." She gave Draco an offended, nasty look, but still didn't seem to be leaving. Harry reached and flushed the toilet, hoping to get out of the bathroom while Malfoy spoke to Myrtle. Myrtle floated above Draco for another moment, but when he seemed to be quite serious about her leaving, she turned angrily and floated through the wall of the cubicle that Harry was in, just as he was zipping his trousers back up. "Oy!" he exclaimed. She threw him a nasty look as well before disappearing down the toilet, wetting Harry's shoes. Harry let out an angry sound. Cursing

HEX ME OR KISS ME

Myrtle, he turned and exited the stall. Malfoy was still standing at the sinks. Harry walked over towards him to wash his hands. He avoided Malfoy's eyes and wished that he would have just left when he'd had the chance. "So, Potter," Draco sneered, "why have you been following me?" Harry's eyes shot to Draco for a second, but shot back just as quick. "I haven't been following you," he said, trying to work some disgust into his voice. "Sure, you haven't ..." Draco drawled. "You just happen to be wherever I am these days." He stepped behind Harry, putting himself between him and the door. Harry finished washing his hands and grabbed a towel to dry them, aware of Malfoy's movement. He paused for a moment and slowly turned to face the other boy. "I haven't been following you. You've obviously either been seeing things or only paying attention when I'm there." Harry couldn't very well admit that he thought Malfoy was up to something. Draco stepped forward, close to Harry, and looked down at him. "Like on the train," he said quietly. "Lurking about all the time. Not very Gryffindor, that. One would almost think you fancied me or something." Draco's hands were on his hips, and there was a strange smile on his face as he looked down at Harry. Harry narrowed his eyes. "Funny that that's the conclusion you come to," he said angrily, trying to step around Malfoy and leave. Something about the boy was unnerving him, and he wanted to get out of that bathroom. Draco stepped with Harry, continuing to block his retreat. "Come on, Harry," he said, smiling amusedly. "What is it with you this year? You haven't been spending much time with the Weasel or the Mudblood lately." Had Malfoy just called him Harry? Harry shook that thought from his head and glared at the boy in front of him. "It's none of your fucking business who I spend time with. Get the hell out of my way." He tried to step around Malfoy again. Damn, but Draco loved it when Potter flushed like that, loved his green eyes flashing. Nothing made him feel better than getting a reaction out of the other boy. Draco's smile widened and he continued to step in Potters way, this time forcing him back a bit

HARRY POTTER AND THE BOUND PRINCE

with his own body. "In a hurry?" he drawled. "Wouldn't it be easier to just ask me for whatever it is you want?" "I don't know what the fuck you're playing at, Malfoy. Get out of my way, you bloody ponce." Harry tried, once again, to get away from Malfoy, becoming angrier with every passing second. Potter angry just flat worked for Draco. He grinned, raising his eyebrows. He grabbed Potters arms, shoving him back against a wall. Draco couldn't reach his wand, but neither could Harry. It suited Draco just fine, since he was taller than the other boy. "I thought Gryffindors were supposed to be bold," he said, laughing, "but mostly you lot just seem oblivious." Harry was quite shocked when Malfoy grabbed him. "What the what the fucking -" he spluttered as he struggled to get away. His face flushed bright red with anger. Draco gasped. He knew he shouldn't be doing this. Hell, Potter would probably hex him after, but if you are going to die anyway, he thought, why not at Potters hands rather than the alternative? He pressed his body against Potters and brought his lips down over the other boy's. Harry's eyes widened almost comically. He could NOT believe what Draco Malfoy was doing. It was wrong, and, Merlin, it couldn't be happening. Harry turned his head away forcefully and, gathering up all his strength, he pushed Malfoy away from him. "WHAT THE BLOODY FUCK WAS THAT?!" he shouted, the sound of his own voice ringing in his ears. Draco let go of Potter's arms when he was shoved back, reaching for his wand in case he needed to defend himself. "Just testing," he teased, giving Harry a smirk and a raise of his eyebrows. Harry wiped the back of his hand over his mouth and spat on the floor. "Just testing?! What the fuck is that supposed to mean?!" he asked, barely able to wrap his mind around what had just happened to him. Draco shook his head and leant against the wall. "Run along now, Potter. Your friends might actually notice that you're missing. Wouldn't want them to find us together." Harry wiped his mouth again and glared at Malfoy, breathing heavily. He crossed the room to the door, trying to ignore the strange feeling in his stomach. Then he turned back and threw Malfoy one

HEX ME OR KISS ME

last disgusted, terrified look. "You're fucking mental," he spat, before disappearing from sight. Draco's posture relaxed and he really rested against the wall for a minute. "Yeah, I suppose I am," he whispered. Harry walked quickly up to his common room, wringing his hands and feeling like the world had flipped upside down. He tried to get his homework done, but he couldn't focus; he nearly jumped out of his skin when Ron asked him if he was preoccupied with Malfoy again. He ended up going to bed early, dreading seeing Malfoy the next morning. May 2 Draco slept badly. Well, truth be told, that was nothing new. He hadn't slept well since he had been taken before the Dark Lord the previous summer. And dreams involving Potter were not exactly new either. But in the past few months they had been getting even more intense. He woke early, gasping again. He gave up any pretence of going back to bed and went directly to the shower. By the time the rest of the house was up, Draco was cleaned, dressed, and sitting in the common room, trying to catch up on the homework he had been ignoring. It was bloody hard to study when you expected to die anyway. Finally, he closed the book and made his way to breakfast. Despite going to bed early, Harry'd got up late. He hadn't slept well and was still very tired. He considered skipping breakfast all together, but couldn't bring himself to be afraid of Draco Malfoy, even if he had done something more terrifying than anything he'd done before. He went down to breakfast with Ron and Hermione. He saw Malfoy there, but quickly looked away, the strange feeling in his stomach starting up again. Draco glanced over at Harry. Often. It really wouldn't surprise most people, as he always did keep an eye on the Gryffindor. He was amused to notice that Harry seemed to be trying to avoid looking at him. Harry ate little and didn't speak much. Hermione kept throwing him concerned looks, but he wouldn't answer any of her questions. He finally got sick of sitting at the table and set off early for Defence

HARRY POTTER AND THE BOUND PRINCE

Against the Dark Arts. Draco saw Harry leave breakfast. Having arrived there early himself, he was more than ready to go. He got up to make his way to class as well. Harry stuffed his hands into his pockets, slowly walking along the corridor. It was silent and he was thankful for that; however, it wasn't silent for long. He soon heard the footsteps of someone walking along behind him. He turned, thinking that Ron and Hermione had followed him, but it wasn't them. It was the last person on earth he wanted to see right then. "All by yourself and early to class," Draco drawled. "Maybe we should check the Polyjuice supplies." Harry flushed at the sight of Malfoy as the feeling in his stomach returned full force. "Is there a reason why you're following me around now?" he asked angrily, keeping a safe distance away. "Sure, there is." Draco laughed and leant against the wall with one shoulder. He couldn't stop grinning at the look on Potters face. He had always enjoyed upsetting the other boy. Now he found himself wondering again if there might be more mutual feelings than anger. Harry raised an eyebrow. This was so infuriatingly wrong! Malfoy wasn't saying things that Harry expected. "Well?" Harry asked impatiently. "What the fuck do you want?" "What do I want?" Draco laughed again. "Well, there are lots of things I want, Potter. Could you be more specific?" Harry rolled his eyes and sighed angrily. "You just said you were following me. Why? What do you want?" "Well," Draco stepped forward, toward Potter, lowering his voice as if what he were about to say should not be heard, "there is this," he drawled. "This is where the Defence Against the Dark Arts class is. And, probably because the old man seems to take some kind of perverse pleasure out of it, we always have the class together." Harry narrowed his eyes and took a step back. "Don't try and pull any more ... fucking shit on me again," he said nervously. He couldn't even bring himself to voice aloud what had actually happened. "Rather I hit you than kiss you. Is that it?" Draco smirked. "Surely that wasn't your first?" "Yes, I would rather have you hit me than kiss me, and no, it

HEX ME OR KISS ME

wasn't my first. Not that it's any of your fucking business," Harry spat coldly, crossing his arms and wishing the bell would ring already, even though he knew it was still a while before class. "Such language from the wizarding world's Chosen One?" Draco tsked. "The Daily Prophet should be notified." "Fucking sod the fuck off," Harry said purposely, leaning back against the wall. Draco Malfoy was not a normal human being. He had kissed Harry without any warning and now he was acting as if it hadn't happened. It was a fairly big deal to Harry! Draco walked closer, looking down at Potter for a minute. He couldn't decide if Potter was on the verge of hitting him or crying. "You don't like it either, do you?" he asked in a strangely quiet voice. Harry narrowed his eyes as Malfoy came near him. "Don't like what?" he asked dangerously. He was tempted to take a step back, but he didn't. The smile had faded with the sudden realisation, and it was a thoughtful Draco who looked down into angry green eyes. "What the wizarding world expects of you," the blond answered in that same quiet tone. That threw Harry for a loop. "Why would you ask me that?" he said, some of the bitterness leaving his voice. Draco stood with a slight frown on this face and continued to stare at Harry as if he had never seen him before. "I always assumed you liked being their Golden Boy," he said. "Yeah, well, you don't know anything about me," Harry said quietly, but forcefully all the same. He really didn't know why he was having this conversation with Draco Malfoy of all people. "And I suppose you think you know all about me, do you?" Draco's smirk was back, but seemed softer. He leant against the wall next to Harry. Harry raised his eyebrows. "Well, I did, but you've managed to confuse me greatly within the last day," he admitted wearily. "I used to think you were an evil little bastard. Now I think maybe you're a mad, evil little bastard." He wasn't being completely serious, but he sort of meant it; he very much meant the "mad" part. Draco nodded, grinning. "I think my father would take issue with the last word of that," he said with a laugh. "And given my looks, it would seem inaccurate." He shrugged. "Not sure about the rest."

HARRY POTTER AND THE BOUND PRINCE

Harry rolled his eyes, amazed that he and Malfoy were doing something that faintly resembled having a conversation. "Are you sure you're not the one who's taken Polyjuice?" he asked. Draco laughed and then rolled his eyes. He glanced past Potter and then pushed off from the wall, adopting a more familiar pose. "Heads up; here come our classmates," he whispered. "Back to usual now." Harry looked at Malfoy confusedly. He didn't move from his place on the wall. Sure enough, he heard voices from down the corridor and was soon joined by Ron and Hermione. He looked over at Malfoy. Malfoy's classic sneer was in place before the others got in sight. "Here are your reinforcements, Potter." He managed to make Potter sound derogatory again. And then he turned and headed into the classroom. Harry followed Malfoy through the door and took his seat at his usual table with Ron and Hermione. Snape came striding in soon after. Everyone fell silent. Harry's eyes were still focused on Malfoy, and he was so confused. Draco stole a glance at Harry, but then tried to focus on Snape. The last thing he needed was for Snape to figure out something had changed. "Harry," Hermione whispered from next to him. "Take out your parchment. You know Professor Snape always starts with a lecture. Malfoy's not going to jump up and declare his allegiance with YouKnow-Who in the middle of class. Honestly!" Harry gave her a disgruntled look and did as he was told, trying to put Malfoy and his strangeness out of his mind for the moment.

CHAPTER TWO

Tea With a Dragon


Draco stood in the corridor, the tapestry of ballet-dancing trolls behind him. He imagined the room he needed and began to pace. Three times he moved in front of the short stretch of wall before the door appeared. He slipped in, closing it softly behind him. Harry had been watching his map ever since classes had finished that day. He set off with his Cloak as soon as he saw Malfoy move from the Slytherin dungeons. Sure enough, his dot disappeared on the seventh floor. He made his way from Gryffindor tower, down to the Room of Requirement, and stood in front of the space where he knew the door would be if he were allowed in. "Open," he pleaded, still convinced that, somehow, it might do what he asked. The door appeared and opened suddenly, and Draco stood there, smiling at Harry. One hand on the door, and the other on the doorway, Draco raised an eyebrow. "You really should use a Silencing Charm with that thing," he drawled. "A Hippogriff would probably make less noise." Harry was frozen for a moment, but then reached up and pulled his Cloak off. "What are you doing in there?" he asked suspiciously, trying to peek over Malfoy's shoulder. Draco smirked, blocking Harry's way and his view. "Would you like to come in?" he asked. "It depends on what's in there," Harry said warily. "I happen to know that you've been coming here for the better part of this year. Why?" "Ah, so the confession comes out at last," Draco said with a laugh. "You admit you have been following me." Harry let out a huff of breath. "Fine, I admit it. Now what are you doing in there?" "Waiting for you, of course." Draco shook his head. "So, would you like to come in?" Harry made a face at that, but his enormous curiosity got the

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better of him. "Yeah, whatever," he said, crossing his arms. Grinning, Draco stepped back, holding the door for Harry and making a sweeping gesture of welcome for the other boy. Harry rolled his eyes at Malfoy's gesture, but walked in, taking care not to brush against Malfoy as he passed him. Draco closed the door behind Harry and turned to lean with his back against it and his arms across his chest. He stood watching the other boy. The room was a sitting room. There was a couch, a small table, what appeared to be a working fireplace, rugs on the floor and tapestries on the walls. A tea service was sitting out. Harry raised an eyebrow. "You sit in here and have tea every day?" he asked disbelievingly. Draco rolled his eyes. "Of course not." He walked forward, past Harry, and sat at one end of the couch. He reached for one of the biscuits and nibbled on it. Harry wasn't sure what to do. He hadn't been expecting this at all. "So, what do you do here then?" he asked, not making any move to sit down. "Pretend you're civilised, Potter." Draco gestured towards a spot on the sofa beside him. "Sit down and have some tea." Harry wasn't sure if he really should. He stood awkwardly by the door for a few seconds before finally deciding that doing what Malfoy said might provide him with some answers. He moved and sat on the far end of the couch, away from Malfoy. Draco poured Harry some tea in a nice china cup and looked at him. "Do you take milk or sugar?" Harry thought Draco Malfoy was probably the oddest person he'd ever met. "Erm, two sugars," he said, feeling strange. Draco nodded, putting sugar in Harry's cup and then handing it to him. He put sugar and milk in his own. "Biscuit?" "Sure " Harry said slowly, scratching the back of his neck. Draco placed several of the sweets on a small plate and put it on the table in front of Harry. He took a second biscuit for himself and began eating it and sipping his tea, watching Harry as he did. Harry took an awkward sip of tea and nibbled a biscuit. "So ..." he began, unsure of what to do. A million questions were running through his mind, of course, but he hadn't planned on Malfoy's

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behaviour which was throwing him off considerably. Draco swore he hadn't smiled so much all year. He found himself doing it yet again at Harry's nervousness. He sat back, waiting. It was amazing being this close to Harry. Without yelling, or throwing punches or hexes, he could really study the other boy's face. "Look," Harry said when he realised Malfoy wasn't going to say anything. "I'm not really sure why you want to ... talk to me or whatever, but I'm - I mean - you're - this is all very confusing," he finished lamely. "Maybe I just wanted to know what you're like when you are not yelling at me or trying to hex me." Draco suggested. "Why? It's not like you wanted to know before," Harry said angrily. "Besides, you've yelled at me and hexed me just as much as I've done to you." "Let's just say that I am dying of curiosity." Draco grimaced at his own joke. Harry didn't understand. "You're very strange," he said, taking another sip of tea. He relaxed a bit more into the sofa; if he was going to sit there, he thought he might as well get comfortable. Draco tried to relax as well, to sit back and enjoy this while he could. He sipped the sweet drink and smirked at Harry. "So, how are you doing so well in Potions? I never took you for one who studies." Harry nearly choked. "Oh, erm, well, I've been studying more this year," he said quickly. "It's also been easier without Snape teaching it." That was very true, but of course, it wasn't the only reason Harry was doing well. "You are a terrible liar, Potter." Draco laughed. "I would have thought you had help, but no one else is doing that well. Not even ... Granger." "Well, perhaps I'm just that good at it without Snape there," Harry said, knowing how thick he sounded. He quickly changed the subject. "You haven't been looking too good. Are you ill or something?" he asked. Draco shook his head, dropping the subject but filing it away for further consideration later. "Or something, I suppose." He shrugged. He wasn't sure whether to be annoyed that Potter didn't like the way he looked, or glad that he noticed at all. Harry shrugged as well. He didn't know what else to say. A few

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moments of silence passed before he spoke again. "So, are you going to tell me what you really get up to in here?" he asked, looking at Malfoy seriously. Draco's laugh this time was humourless. "Obsessive, are you?" He sighed. "Let's make it a multiple choice answer, shall we? I am either A) having parties, to which you are not invited, B) planning a way to let the forces of evil into Hogwarts, C) wanking off in the privacy of this little drawing room, D) trying to figure a way to kill someone, or E) none of the above." "You expect me to answer that?" Harry said with a raised eyebrow. "You're probably wanking," he said as a joke, though he didn't laugh. In all honesty, he thought it was probably a mixture of B and D. Draco's grin widened and he waggled his eyebrows. "On this very sofa." Harry's face fell. "That's pretty disgusting," he said, uncomfortable again. The weird feeling in his stomach was back. "I was more honest than you were," Draco teased, patting the sofa and smiling at Harry. "Eugh, so you did wank on this sofa?" Harry said, moving to sit on the very edge of it. "I was only joking!" Draco's grin widened and he asked, "What if I told you the answer was all but one?" He paused. "And I will give you a yes on C." Harry frowned and thought for a moment. "If that's true, then E would have to be the only one that's not true. You're planning on killing someone?!" Draco frowned for a moment, looking up in concentration. "Damn, you're right. I forgot about E." He laughed. "All but two, then." Harry sighed in relief. "That still means you're either planning on killing someone, or letting the forces of evil into Hogwarts, or both. Which is it?" Draco shook his head and looked at the ceiling as if somewhere up there would be the answer to why Gryffindors still existed. "So, how are you doing so well in Potions?" he asked again, looking Harry directly in the eyes. Harry's eyes bore into Malfoy's. All right, he would play this game. "My Potions book," he said after a few seconds.

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"Since when do you actually read your books?" Draco sneered. He couldn't help it. He knew a half-truth when he heard one. He was a Malfoy, after all. Harry sighed. "My book has notes in it. If you remember, I had to borrow one from Slughorn because I didn't think I'd be taking Potions this year. Whoever had the book before me was really good at Potions, and they left notes in it. Big deal. Now tell me what you do in here," Harry finished without missing a beat. Draco leant forward, setting his empty cup down. "Do you have the book with you?" Harry raised an eyebrow. "No. Why would I?" "I'd like to see it, that's why," Draco answered, and reached for the teapot, pouring himself another cup. "Want more?" He held it up and gestured with his head toward Harry's cup. Harry shrugged. "Sure," he said, holding the cup out. This was so strange. "Are you going to answer me now, or do I have to show you my book?" Draco poured Harry another cup and added sugar before putting the milk and sugar in his own. "Given how slippery you are with answers, I will have to see the book first." He smiled to show it wasn't an insult, but couldn't help adding, "You are almost Slytherin in your tendency for hiding things, Harry." Harry couldn't help but make a face at the sound of his first name leaving Malfoy's mouth. It sounded odd. Suddenly, he found that he wanted to know why Malfoy had done what he had done the previous day. Turning slightly red, Harry faced him. "Why did you, erm, you know ... yesterday?" he asked. "Yesterday was a long day. What specifically are you asking me?" Draco drawled. Harry rolled his eyes. "What do you think I'm talking about?" he said plainly. "Ahhh," Draco sighed like it was a revelation, but then he gave Harry an appraising look. "Because I wanted to." Harry flushed even brighter. "Er - why?" he asked. Draco considered Harry for a moment, then raised an eyebrow. "You kiss me this time, and I will tell you." Harry gulped and, if possible, turned redder. "Oh. I don't think I want to know that badly," he said sheepishly.

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"I think you do." Draco smiled. "I think you won't sleep tonight if you don't have the answer." Malfoy was probably right, but Harry couldn't do it. He couldn't willingly kiss Draco Malfoy. "I - I can't," he said, shaking his head and scratching the back of his neck again. "I just - I can't." Draco didn't know whether to be offended or amused. "You can face trolls, Dementors, and the Dark Lord, but you can't kiss me?" Okay, both, he thought, and laughed. Harry narrowed his eyes. "It's not that I'm afraid of you," he said. "I just can't. I'm not gay for one thing," he said, the blush on his face now creeping across his neck and chest. Draco shrugged. "Neither am I." Harry was confused. "But then why - I - why would you ...?" Harry spluttered. "Is everything black and white with you?" Draco asked in exasperation, putting his cup down and standing. He walked around the table, gesturing as he spoke. "Straight or gay? Good or evil? Reality is a complex place, and people even more so. Isn't there room in your head for all of the other possibilities?" Harry shrugged. He'd never thought that Malfoy would be talking to him about good and evil. He took a giant of a breath. "Will the answer even be worth a kiss if I do kiss you?" he asked quickly. Draco smiled. "The kiss might be worth the kiss. All I can guarantee about the answer is that it will be true." Harry grimaced, not wanting to believe what he was about to do. But he was a Gryffindor, right? "Fine, I'll do it," he said, not looking Malfoy in the eye. Draco raised an eyebrow, hands on his hips, and stood on the other side of the table, waiting. "What? You want me to come over there?" asked Harry, finally looking up. Draco shrugged, walked back around the table and sat down on the couch. He turned to face Harry, one arm resting on the back of the sofa and the other in his lap. Harry bit his lip. "It doesn't have to be ... a certain ... way, does it?" he asked. "Oh, really, Harry." Draco sighed. "You are sure you have done this before, right?"

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15

"Yes!" Harry said. He didn't mention that he'd only done it a handful of times with Cho. "Then a real kiss; not something you would give your aunt or grandmother or something," Draco said. He couldn't believe he was doing this. He had never had to ask anyone to kiss him before. In fact, there were quite a few rather willing volunteers out there. "I can't believe I am even doing this," he muttered, shaking his head. "You're the one who wants to! You could just tell me?" Harry added hopefully, already knowing that it was no good. Draco scowled, crossing his arms and leaning back against the opposite end of the sofa. "Forget it, Potter," he snapped. "This was all a mistake. Just go." Harry raised an eyebrow. "What ...?" he asked, confused by Malfoy's sudden mood swing. "If you can't even bring yourself to kiss me, then there really is no point." Draco sighed, closing his eyes and leaning his head back on the couch. "I already said I would do it," Harry said, feeling like he was failing at some sort of challenge; plus, he really did want to know why Malfoy had wanted to kiss him in the first place. Draco ignored him, his eyes shut tight, an ache in his chest that he didn't understand, and his hand clenched in his lap. Harry bit his lip very tightly. He'd never seen Malfoy act this way. Gathering up all of his willpower, he crawled across the sofa and hovered above Malfoy for a moment where the blond was leaning against the arm of the couch. One of Harry's hands grasped the back of the sofa so that he could keep his balance, and then, before he could change his mind, he lowered his mouth and kissed Malfoy very gently, his eyes fluttering closed. Draco went very still when he felt Harry move. At first he'd thought Harry was leaving, but then he felt the other boy's body hovering over his and his breath on his face. He kept perfectly still, waiting, and then he felt Harry's lips on his. One hand gripped the back of the couch, but the other rose without him thinking about it and rested palm down against Harry's side, steadying him. Draco couldn't believe how good those lips felt, and he gasped into the touch, his mouth opening slightly. Harry didn't know what had come over him. All he knew was

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that Malfoy's gasp excited him far more than was called for. He allowed his mouth to open a bit as well. His body seemed to press down against Malfoy's of its own accord, and he threaded his fingers in Malfoy's hair. His heart was beating madly, and somewhere inside his head he knew this was wrong, but in that moment, he didn't much care. It felt too good. Draco's breath sped up and he felt intoxicated breathing in Harry's breath as well. When Harry's hand was in his hair, it felt like it pulled every nerve in his body, making him shudder. Harry's mouth was soft, and sweet, and firm, unlike anyone elses he had kissed. Draco's tongue gently caressed the edge of those lips. Harry gasped this time. He felt entirely lost, but wasn't sure if he wanted to be found. He'd never kissed anyone like this before. It was like he was drowning in it, but it felt like he needed it as well. Needed it badly. Draco's tongue slipped further into Harry's mouth, looking for the other boy's. The hand on Harry's side moved up onto his back, pulling him down to Draco's body while his other hand released the sofa and slipped fingers into Harry's thick hair. Harry allowed his tongue to meet Malfoy's, and he almost died right then. He let out a small moan and gripped Malfoy's robes with the hand that wasn't entangled in his hair. He couldn't even remember the point of the kiss; he didn't care anymore. He didn't care that he wasn't supposed to be enjoying this. Sod all of that. He needed it. As his tongue caressed Harry's, Draco felt it all the way down his spine. He arched in response and felt his body pressed against Harry's. Harry moaned again when Malfoy arched against him. He bore down and broke away from the kiss to get a proper breath. He wondered when he had pushed Malfoy nearly all the way onto his back, but that didn't matter. He buried his face into the soft flesh of Malfoy's neck and sucked, and kissed, and nibbled. It felt better than he could believe. Draco gasped when Harry broke the kiss, taking deep lungfuls of air and moaning when the other boy started doing amazing things to his neck. One hand was still buried in Harry's hair, not controlling, but he loved the feel of its thickness between his fingers. He couldn't

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believe this was really happening. Part of him was afraid that it was a dream, not real. But if that was the case, he thought he would rather die than ever wake up. Harry kissed along Malfoy's jaw, his ears, his collarbone and his lips again. He was getting dangerously aroused, and Malfoy's thigh was somehow pressed against his crotch. It wouldn't be long before Malfoy noticed ... but fuck, he couldn't stop. He couldn't. Draco was moaning now, clutching Harry's hair and pushing against the other boy's thigh where it pressed against his groin. He was so hard, he was surprised his trousers hadn't split from the pressure. Harry began thrusting, breathing heavily above Malfoy's face, his eyes half-closed. He leant in again, his mouth close to Malfoy's ear. "This is so fucking good," he whispered against it. He didn't care that he'd said that. Every reasonable thought had left him, and he was overwhelmed with the need to impress Malfoy at that moment. The feel of Harry moving against him and his own answering hardness was making Draco's head spin. And when Harry spoke like that, Draco's world really did spin. He opened his eyes wide to look at Harry, wanting to assure himself that it really was Harry Potter saying and doing these things. "Yes," Draco whispered in a voice that sounded almost like a prayer. He was meeting Harry's thrusts, one hand on Harry's hip and the other on his shoulder. Harry clenched his teeth and rested his forehead on Malfoy's shoulder, still bucking wildly. He was so close, so close. He clutched Malfoy's robes even tighter. His right hand moved from Malfoy's hair and gripped the sofa material so hard he thought it might tear. "Harry!" Draco shouted, his head thrown back. He arched as he came, his arms pulling Harry hard against him. That was all it took. Harry almost split his lip as he bit it. After two more thrusts he was coming as well, his teeth gritted to prevent any noise escaping; a strangled cry escaped him anyway. He went limp against Malfoy, breathing harder than he'd ever done before. He felt like he might never be able to move again. The weight of Harry's body pressing him into the sofa was the most comforting thing Draco had ever felt. His whole body continued to shudder in the aftermath of his orgasm, and he buried his face in Harry's hair, arms wrapped tightly around him. He didn't

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know why, but he could feel the tears from earlier return, trailing down his cheeks and soaking into that black hair.

CHAPTER THREE

Say My Name
Harry almost fell asleep in the direct moments after his orgasm, though he was fully awake when he felt Malfoy clutch at him tightly. He lifted his head to look at Malfoy's face and frowned at what he saw. "What's wrong?" he asked hoarsely, a little shocked that Malfoy was crying again, that he was letting Harry see it. Draco looked away from that intense gaze and closed his eyes, still holding Harry tightly. He was unable to literally face him at that moment. Harry didn't know what to do. He respected that perhaps Malfoy didn't want to let Harry see him cry. He laid his head back down and waited, feeling Malfoy still gripping him for dear life; Harry was oddly comfortable. Draco kept his eyes closed, feeling Harry settle back down against him. He took deep breaths, letting the overwhelming feelings wash themselves out as he found his sense of centre again. His grip on the other boy relaxed, but he didn't let go. Finally, he opened his eyes and looked at the ceiling for a minute. The room was dark except for the fire in the hearth. Perhaps it really did know what people needed. Harry could sense it when Malfoy had got a hold of himself. "You all right?" he asked quietly. Draco couldn't help the single laugh that came out almost like a cough. The question was so innocent. He nodded and added quietly, "Yes." Harry nodded. What were they supposed to do now? He'd just had his first ever other-person-induced orgasm, the other person being Draco Malfoy, whom he was supposed to hate, and who was another boy. It felt so strange to disregard those things. Draco opened his eyes and looked at Harry, searching his face to find an answer to a question he couldn't even voice yet. "What?" asked Harry, nearly whispering. Draco smiled. "Does that answer your question?"

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Harry gave a minute smile of his own. "I suppose," he said, his eyelids drooping. Draco reached his hand up and laid his palm against Harry's cheek. "I wanted to know if ... if what I felt was ... real?" "Was it?" asked Harry simply. "Apparently so," Draco said, smiling and running his thumb over Harry's lips as he still held his face. Harry's stomach swooped like it had been doing earlier, only now he knew what it meant. "So ... what now?" Draco leaned his head over and licked at Harry's lips, his eyes still open and watching the other. Harry inhaled sharply. "Oh," he said with a small laugh. Draco smirked at the lovely reaction and leaned in again, kissing Harry gently, his hand sliding along his jaw and into his hair at back of his skull. Harry kissed back languidly. He let out a contented sigh through his nose. "You're a very good kisser," he whispered against Malfoy's lips - Draco's lips. Because, suddenly, it felt odd to think of him as Malfoy. "Not bad, I think. But together, we are bloody fantastic," Draco said with a small laugh. Harry laughed too and yawned. "What time is it?" he asked sleepily. He didn't feel like moving. "You really don't want to know. Chances are we are past curfew," Draco answered, carding his long fingers through that impossibly thick, dark hair. "No, I don't want to know really," Harry said, settling in against Draco. He kissed the side of the blond's neck and yawned again. He found himself wishing for a blanket and suddenly felt one covering both of them. He shifted around a bit and then felt the sticky mess in his trousers. "Ugh," he said, "I'm all ... gross." "Cleaning Charms work wonders." Draco smiled sleepily. He noticed the blanket and then grinned. He imagined they were lying in a very large bed instead of the sofa. He laughed when they were. "I'm not very good at Cleaning Charms," Harry said, smiling at the bed. He sat up and pulled his wand out of his robe pocket. He muttered the charm and felt a little less sticky, but not completely clean. He thought for a moment and suddenly, there was box of

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tissue sitting next to him on the bed. "Call me old fashioned," he muttered as he grabbed some tissue and shoved his hand down his trousers. Draco frowned and retrieved his own wand. He did a quick charm on himself and made a strange face watching Harry with his hand down his trousers. He swallowed hard and found that hard was something his body was thinking, too. "Hm, want some help with that?" Harry looked up at Draco when he finished with the tissue. "Nah, that's all right, I'm fi -" but then he saw the look on Draco's face, and he, too, swallowed hard. "Help?" he asked breathlessly. Draco sat staring for a moment at Harry. "And just what would you like help with, Harry?" he purred, smiling wickedly. Harry bit his already raw-feeling lip. He took a deep breath. It was good to be sixteen. "I think you can figure it out," he said, his voice husky. He'd never even heard his voice sound like that. Draco set his wand down on a shelf at the headboard that seemed to be just for such occasions. He was breathing heavier already from the sound of Harry's voice and the look in his eyes. "Lie down," he said quietly. Harry's heart sped up erratically. He did as told and closed his eyes, his chest rising and falling rapidly with every breath. He brought one hand up to grip in his own hair, and the other he covered his face with. What was Draco going to do to him? He very much wanted to know. Draco knelt next to Harry and nearly laughed at his odd pose. Instead, he reached forward and began unbuttoning Harry's trousers and then slowly pulled them back. "Oh, Merlin," Harry said nervously, already half hard again. "Indeed," Draco whispered, reaching a hand to caress the other boy's cock still trapped in his shorts. Almost reverently, he slid his fingers along the side of it. Harry gasped even at such a simple touch. No one had ever touched him there before; he found that he liked that it was Draco. Who knew that he could find out so much about himself within the confines of a few hours? Draco's eyes widened a bit at Harry's reaction, and then he smiled, moving his hand more confidently. He slid his hand back up,

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continuing up so that he pushed Harry's shirt with it. At the first contact with the skin of Harry's belly, Draco gasped as well. Harry swallowed, feeling like he was drowning in a very good way for the second time that night. "Oh, Merlin, just do it," he pleaded, loving that Draco was taking his time, but feeling tortured as well. Draco chuckled then, but complied, sliding his hand back down, but under the waistband of Harry's shorts. When his hand moved over Harry's cock this time, it was skin on skin, and Draco wondered if he could come just from doing this to the other boy. "Oh, my God," Harry let out, arching into Draco's touch. He'd never felt something so good in his life, and he'd thought that what they had been doing before had been good. This direct contact was heavenly; so much better than his own hand. He thought he would burst, and Draco wasn't even moving fast. Draco grinned at the feeling of Harry's cock jumping in his hand when he touched it. He wrapped his long fingers around that warm flesh. "Harry," he said quietly, "don't cover your face." Harry pulled his hand from his face, flushed and hot. He almost came when he looked down at Draco, at what Draco was doing to him. He propped himself up on his elbows, wanting to watch, hardly able to breathe. Draco's expression was a mixture of delight and awe as he began to fully stroke Harry's cock with his hand. With his other hand, he pulled Harry's shorts down so that his erection was free of the fabric. He glanced up at Harry and grinned at the look on his face. Harry locked eyes with Draco, panting. "Kiss me," he whispered. Draco nodded, not trusting himself to speak. He shifted his body so that he lay alongside Harry's, his hand still holding the other boy's flesh as he used his arm to prop himself up. He leaned over and kissed Harry, his hand squeezing gently as he did. Harry's arms gave way and he fell onto his back, pulling Draco along with him. He continued to kiss him, all mouth, and tongue, and wetness, and perfection. Harry had never felt as exhilarated as he did right then. Draco began to stroke Harry in time with his tongue thrusting into the other boy's mouth. His own clothed body was pressed against Harry's hip. Long fingers gently slid up and down, thumb flicking over the head of Harry's cock and spreading the moisture on

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the down stroke. Harry was close to coming again. The rhythm that Draco had developed between his tongue and his hand was so fucking hot, it made Harry imagine doing things that he knew he wasn't ready for, but fuck, they were hot all the same. "I'm gonna come," he whispered against Draco's skin. "Good," was all Draco could say, nipping and sucking at Harry's jaw as he concentrated on keeping the rhythm. Harry pulled Draco's mouth to his and came with Draco's tongue still inside. He cried out, lost to everything except the boy on top of him. The room was spinning, but that was fine with Draco. The feeling of Harry's hot come on his hand, Harry's hands pulling him, their mouths and tongues entwined, and Harry's body shuddering against him, reminded him a lot of flying. And it was perfect. Harry smiled against Draco's lips as he slowly came down from his high. "Mmmm," he sighed happily. Draco licked Harry's lips and pulled back to look at his face, smiling. "Now I really have to show you how to use a Cleaning Charm," he teased. Harry's grin widened. "Be my guest," he said, stretching. Draco laughed and sat up again. He groaned a bit as he did, the tightness in his trousers restricting his movement a bit. Picking up his wand, he did a simple Cleaning Spell on his hand and on Harry. He returned the wand to its shelf and sat staring down at the boy splayed out before him. Harry's trousers and shorts were pulled half-way down his hips, and his shirt was pulled up just enough to show his belly button. They both still wore the rest of their school clothes. Harry watched Draco stare at him, and he didn't miss the wince when Draco had sat up. He knew exactly what that was from. Smiling to himself, he said, "Well, I think I'm going to sleep," just to see what Draco would do if he didn't think he was going to get wanked off too. Harry shucked out of his pants and his trousers and threw them off the side of the bed along with his robe. He curled up on his side, still smiling wickedly to himself. Draco raised his eyebrows at Harry but didn't comment. Instead, he climbed out of the bed and carefully removed his robes, laying them on a chair that suddenly appeared nearby. Then he undid his tie

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and slid it out of the collar, folding it and laying it across the robe. He sat on the edge of the chair and removed his shoes and socks. Then he stood again to unbutton his trousers and pulled both them and his shorts off. He laid those on top of the other clothing. Harry watched as Draco undressed himself, so much more gracefully than Harry had done. If Draco turned around Harry would see his cock, and he probably wouldn't be able to keep up his facade. Draco did turn then and found Harry watching him. Standing there, in just his shirt, Draco grinned and cocked his head, meeting the other boy's gaze. Harry bit his lip for what felt like the millionth time that night. He didn't say anything. He tried to keep a straight face, but his eyes were probably giving him away. Draco nodded, liking the look in those sparkling green eyes. He glanced down at his erection, jutting out from blond curls just below the shirt hem. Then he brought his eyes back up to Harry's. Harry allowed himself a grin. He wanted Draco to get his arse over to the bed right that second, but he still didn't say anything. Draco put his hands on his hips and raised an eyebrow, silently challenging the other boy. Harry knew exactly what Draco was doing and admired his willpower. An erection like that had to be aching. He engaged in a silent staring contest, a small grin playing on his lips. Draco smirked, but held his position. Yes, his cock ached, but a small amount of pain never stopped Draco from getting what he wanted. Harry smiled and then caved. "All right fine; get over here, you prat," he said playfully. Draco lifted his arms, stretching them over his head. The movement made his shirt ride up and his cock bob. "Prat, is it?" He smirked and walked slowly forward until he stood next to the bed. "Yes, you are a prat," Harry said again. He waited a few seconds. "Well, are you going to get in or not?" he asked with a laugh. Draco nodded and sat down on the bed, then lay back, swinging his legs up onto the mattress and stretching like a cat. Harry was very quick to roll on top of him, sliding his hands up under Draco's shirt to caress his pale skin. He kissed him lightly on the mouth before working his way across his jaw again.

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Draco hissed, arching under Harry and throwing his head back. "Mmm, I like it when you do that," Harry said, sliding one teasing hand ever lower. He touched Draco's inner thigh, so close to his throbbing cock, but not quite there. "Now who is the prat?" Draco hissed between clenched teeth, his hands gripping the bedspread under them. Harry let out a small laugh and kissed Draco's chin. "Do you want me to touch you, Draco?" he said slowly, licking a trail from Draco's chin to his neck. "Fuck, yes!" Draco gasped, his hands twisting the fabric of the counterpane and his body tense under Harry. Harry smiled, loving what he was doing, amazed that he wanted to do this so much. He finally let his hand close around Draco's erection. "Yessss," Draco hissed again, shuddering at the anticipated contact. Harry felt his cock twitch at that. Merlin, how had he ever gone without Draco Malfoy? He began pumping his hand and went back to licking and kissing along Draco's neck. He loved the little sounds Draco made. If Draco had ever doubted his own capacity for self-control, he didn't then. He'd almost come just from the sound of his first name on Harry's lips. And when Harry touched him, he'd had to fight it back then. He didn't know how long he could last, but he was determined to test it. "Tell me what you're thinking," Harry whispered into Draco's ear, wanting to hear how good he was making Draco feel. He sped his hand up, adding a twist at the end. "Not ... thinking," Draco gasped. "Feeling." He was panting loudly and his hands hurt from gripping the bedding, his whole body trembling. Harry knew that Draco was close, and that he was trying with all his might to hold it off. What could put him over the edge? An idea sprang to mind; it was worth a shot. Harry imagined a snake slithering before him and then whispered, "You're so fucking gorgeous," in Parseltongue. Draco had no idea what it was that Harry said, but that definitely did it. He came with a hoarse shout, arching off the bed so far that

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his shoulders and heels were probably the only parts still on the mattress for a moment. He collapsed into a shuddering, moaning heap, curling onto his side, facing Harry. Harry grinned widely, probably looking like an idiot, but not caring much. He waited for Draco to stop shuddering. "Was it good?" he asked cheekily. "Kiss me, you tosser!" was all that Draco managed. He lay curled on his side, feeling utterly wrung out and completely in bliss. He blinked his eyes, trying to focus on Harry's face. Harry smiled and obliged, kissing Draco lightly on the lips before curling up next to him. He had no idea where his glasses had gone, but it didn't matter. "Oh, Cleaning Charm," he said, remembering. "Want me to attempt one?" "Can you do one without removing my parts?" Draco mumbled sleepily. "Yeah, I hope," Harry said. "I really wouldn't want to lose those." He reached and grabbed Draco's wand, not feeling like retrieving his own at the moment. He performed the spell and was amazed that it actually worked. Draco twitched slightly at the feeling of Harry's magic and then sighed. "I guess there's a first time for everything," Harry mused, putting Draco's wand back. He scooted under the covers and pulled them up over himself and Draco, settling in next to him. Draco reached for Harry, pulling him close. His thoughts began to drift. He smiled a bit and muttered, "Using Parseltongue is cheating." Harry's own eyes were beginning to droop and he yawned. "Perhaps, but you loved it," he said. "Say my name again," Draco whispered. For some strange reason, Harry's heart leapt at that. "Draco," he whispered, squeezing him. "Harry," Draco whispered back, his eyes closed. His last thought before he passed out was that Harry's kiss was worth dying for after all.

CHAPTER FOUR

To Die For
May 3 Harry awoke the next morning feeling so warm and comfortable, he didn't want to move. He smiled and kept his eyes closed, inhaling the scent of Draco curled up next to him. He sighed happily and stretched his legs. Draco froze at the feeling of someone moving in bed with him. His heart sped up and it took him a minute to remember, not only where he was, but with whom. He took a deep breath, calming himself. Yes, the scent of Harry and sex. If he hadn't already woken up with a hard on, that would've certainly done it. Harry pulled Draco closer to him. "Are you awake?" he whispered into his ear. Draco's face was pressed against Harry's shirt-clad chest, and he answered by nuzzling it. "Mmm, guess so," Harry said with a laugh, running his fingers through Draco's silky hair. Draco slid a hand around Harry's waist, pulling himself up a bit on Harry's chest and then opening his eyes, looking up at Harry's face. "Morning," Harry said with a smile, his eyes shining. His hands began roaming under the shirt and across the smooth skin of Draco's back. "Mmm." Draco answered the touch more than the words, blinking at the intensity of those green eyes. "It was real then?" he asked as if he still couldn't believe it. Harry chuckled. "I think so," he answered quietly, and then he added, "Draco." "Harry," Draco said, smiling to hear the other boy say his name again. Harry laughed and pulled Draco up for a kiss. He closed his eyes and kissed him slowly, remembering all over again how wonderful it

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felt to do this to him. As Harry pulled him up, Draco gasped at the sensation of being rubbed against Harry's body and then his lips on his. He kissed back almost fiercely, squirming a bit as his cock rubbed against Harry's hip. Harry could feel Draco hard against him. "What's this?" he asked with a smirk, reaching down and running his hand along Draco's cock. After last night, he felt bold enough to do it. Draco growled at the touch, thrusting into Harry's hand. "Damn," he cursed, but smiled. "You certainly don't waste any time," Harry said, kissing Draco again. He continued to let his hand only teasingly touch Draco. Draco's skin was so soft and warm and wonderful. Harry was getting hard too. Draco rolled his eyes. "You live in a dorm. You should know about morning wood." Then he hissed at Harry's touch. He slid his own hand down to touch Harry's cock as well. Harry laughed a bit at Draco's remark, but let out a short groan when Draco began touching him. He grasped Draco's cock fully and began fisting it, leaning in to kiss again. Draco smiled, licking Harry's lips as he leant in. "Stop a minute," he gasped. Harry stilled his hand, a bit confused, but curious all the same. Draco rolled away, reaching beside the bed, and smiled as he came back with a small jar. "Whoever designed the room was fucking brilliant." He grinned as he lay back down again. Harry laughed, but then raised an eyebrow. "What's that?" he asked, indicating what was in Draco's hand. "Should be some kind of lube." Draco smiled, unscrewing the lid and sniffing it. He nodded and dipped his fingers inside, rolling the substance around and raising an eyebrow at Harry. Harry bit his lip. "This room is amazing," he said breathlessly. Draco sat up on his knees, looking down at Harry with a wicked smile. "Spread your legs," he said, and smirked. Harry gulped. What was Draco going to do? He was a little afraid, but very aroused. Closing his eyes, he slowly spread his legs, his heart beginning to beat crazily inside his chest. Draco laughed at the look Harry gave him but was thrilled with the way he complied anyway. He moved between Harry's legs,

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scooting forward. "Bring your knees up, feet flat," he said. Harry did as told, taking deep, even breaths. He felt very exposed, and a little strange, but his cock was throbbing with the need for something, whatever Draco wanted to do to him. Draco chuckled, moving so that his knees tucked in the space under Harry's. He pressed his own balls and cock against Harry's and sucked in a breath at the sensation. "Open your eyes," he said quietly. Harry opened his eyes and met Draco's. Draco looked directly at Harry as he reached with his lubed hand for the boy's cock. He smoothed the oil on that soft skin, enjoying the hardness under it. He had to struggle to keep his own eyes from closing in delight. "Mmm," Harry moaned. So that was what Draco was going to do. He relaxed completely and gave an upward thrust of his hips. Draco dipped his other hand into the lube too, coating his own cock as well. Then, with a push of his own hips, he brought the two together, wrapping his own hand around both cocks. Harry gasped and clutched Draco's thighs, thrusting up again. "Fuck," he hissed out. This felt even more wonderful than anything else they had done; it only got better and better. "Merlin, yes," Draco gasped, leaning forward to brace himself on one hand while he thrust into his other, sliding along Harry's cock as he did so. Harry was panting now, moaning on every other breath. He felt like he was on fire. Every part of him that touched Draco felt like ... he didn't even know what it felt like. He just knew that he didn't want it to stop, ever. Draco gasped, not just at the sensation of their cocks sliding together, but at the way his balls lightly slapped against Harry's with each forward thrust. Each time made him shudder and his head swim. He couldn't last long like this, but he would be damned before he would stop. Harry was almost laughing now with pleasure. His face burned, and his chest, and his cock. "Oh fuck, Draco, oh fuck, please don't stop! Please don't stop, Draco!" he began chanting, thrusting as quickly as his body would allow. Oh, that so wasn't fair. Harry chanting like that was going to make Draco come sooner. He gritted his teeth and hung on for

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control, trying to give Harry just what he wanted. Harry clung to Draco like he was going to die. He threw his head back and thrust up with everything he had. A couple more thrusts and he let out an exhausted cry as he came, spurting all over himself and Draco. The feel of Harry's come on his hands, cock, and even on his chest under the shirt, was electric. Draco screamed, coming right after him. He arched, his head thrown back, and swayed on his knees for a moment, understanding that the expression seeing stars wasn't as much of a metaphor as he'd thought before. Harry lay still, trying to get his breathing to return to normal. "That was brilliant," he said, panting. He cupped Draco's face with one hand. Draco nodded, still breathing too hard to speak. He sat back on his feet and smiled down at the mess they had made. His shirt and chest, as well as Harrys, were coated, and his hands were very sticky. He fingered the mess that decorated his own chest for a moment. Harry watched Draco, his eyes glinting. It was actually quite hot to watch him play with their come. He licked his lips and smirked wickedly. Draco smiled back and actually blushed a bit. "Maybe you should pass me my wand?" He couldn't take his eyes off the sight of Harry Potter lying spread before him. "Sure," Harry said, his smirk firmly stuck on his face. He liked it when Draco blushed, he decided. He reached up above him and grabbed Draco's wand, passing it to him. Draco cast the Cleaning Charm on them both and then continued to sit there, staring down at Harry. He laughed when he noticed a large tray sitting on the side of the bed. It was full of food. Draco had just been thinking that he was hungry, but would rather starve than get out of bed right then. Harry laughed too at the sight of the food. "You know, I figure we'd probably never have to leave here," he said sadly, knowing as the words left his mouth how impossible that was. Draco nodded, suddenly sombre. "I wonder how long it will be before they come looking for us." Harry looked away from Draco. "Ron and Hermione will probably panic if I'm gone for too much longer," he said quietly,

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fingering the blanket beneath him. "Let's eat breakfast before we deal with ... the world." Draco gestured with his hand at the world as if dismissing it with his fingers. Harry smiled, but it didn't quite reach his eyes. He nodded and crawled over to the side of the bed where the food was. He popped a strawberry into his mouth and sighed sadly, not wanting to leave the room. It felt almost like a sanctuary. Draco lay down beside Harry and reached for a scone, piling cream on. He nibbled on it, seeming more interested in the cream than the pastry. Harry sighed again. "Want to see my book today?" he asked, remembering the previous night and why he had kissed Draco in the first place. It somehow felt like ages ago. Draco nodded. "Yes, I do. You know I like Potions work, right?" "I have managed to pick that up within the past five years," Harry said with a smile, and then he frowned. "Are you still going to tell me ... what you do in here, after I show you the book?" He almost didn't want to know anymore. Draco looked at him thoughtfully. "I thought I already did." He took another bite of the scone but then grimaced, setting it down. He just didn't feel like eating. He hadn't for a while. "You told me you wanked in here," Harry said, raising his eyebrows. "But you also said that you well, you know the whole multiple choice thing ...." He scratched the back of his neck. Draco rolled his eyes, lying back and staring at the ceiling. "Well, since I am not having parties in here and I am wanking, that leaves both trying to kill someone and trying to let the powers of, well, you get the picture." Harry frowned. "Are you serious about that?" he asked, reaching out and trailing a finger across Draco's arm. He watched it, not being able to look Draco in the eye. "Yes," Draco said quietly, still looking at the ceiling. Harry's frown deepened. He made a strange sound in the back of his throat, trying to say something, but not being able to find the words. "And I only have a couple weeks left," Draco added, glancing at Harry and then closing his eyes.

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"Is it some sort of mission or something?" Harry asked quietly. His worst fears were being confirmed. "Mission?" Draco sighed. "Makes it sound better that way, doesn't it? Rather than 'do this or I kill you, slowly and painfully.'" "What is it exactly that you have to do?" Harry asked, dreading the answer. He continued letting his finger trail up and down Draco's sleeve. "Can't tell you. What I told you already would put you in danger." Draco shook his head. "Except that, being who you are, you are already in danger." "That is very, very true. You can't put me in any more danger than I'm already in. Tell me, Draco. Please," Harry begged, finally looking at Draco. Draco sat up, putting his back to Harry. "Yes, Potter, you could be in more danger. Trust me on that one," he spat. "You have no idea how much." Harry closed his eyes and drew a shaky breath. "I'm sorry," he said, not even sure what he was apologising for. "So am I," Draco said, letting out the breath he didn't realise he'd been holding. "I don't want to do it. But I am a coward. I don't want to die." Harry closed the distance between them and came up behind Draco to hug him. He rested his chin on his shoulder. "I don't want to die either," he said quietly. "Don't think that not wanting to die is weak, just know that there's always another way." Draco snorted. "Gryffindors!" He leant back into Harry's embrace. "I really don't want to die. But I think I can now if I have to." "You didn't think you could before?" Harry asked curiously, playing with Draco's navel. "What changed?" Draco was distracted by Harry's hands. "Um, Harry?" "Hmm?" Harry answered. "Can't talk ... (gasp) ... when you ...." Draco shivered, leaning his head back on Harry's shoulder and arching up a bit. Harry stilled his hands. "Sorry," he said sheepishly. "I didn't realise ...." "I never have had much control where you are concerned." Draco smiled, still lying back against him.

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Harry smiled too. "I've noticed," he said with a smirk and a little nibble on Draco's earlobe. "Mmmm," Draco sighed, feeling like there was a direct link between his earlobe and his cock. Damn, but it was amazing. Harry sighed into Draco's ear. "You know what?" he asked huskily. "Mmmm?" Draco murmured, his cock twitching again as Harry's breath caressed his ear. "You are going to kill me with all this sex," Harry said, licking around the shell of Draco's ear very slowly. He began caressing Draco's stomach again. "And you're so bloody hot. How the hell did I miss that all these years?" "Yes," Draco murmured, his hips rising to try to meet that hand, "you have finally discovered my evil plot." Harry laughed and even that was low and husky. "What do you want me to do to you?" he asked, quickly finding that he loved to hear Draco talk while aroused. "Everything," Draco gasped. "Anything." He thrust his hips higher, trying to brush himself against Harry's hand. Harry didn't touch him; he held his hands just out of reach. "Tell me and I'll do anything you want. Just tell me," he whispered before licking along Draco's neck. God, he could do this forever. "The truth comes out," Draco gasped. "You are truly evil." He turned suddenly in Harry's arms and pinned the other boy to the bed, sending the tray of food crashing to the floor. Draco straddled Harry's waist, having grabbed his wrists. He grinned down at him. Harry was shocked for a moment and didn't move. "Well, this is an interesting turn of events," he said finally with a raised eyebrow. His heart rate began to speed up again. He felt like there was nowhere else in the entire world he would rather be. Draco smiled down at Harry, his balls and hard cock pressed against Harry's belly and Harry's cock pressed against his arse. "Anything?" Draco smirked. Harry gulped, but then made up his mind and nodded. "Yes, anything," he gasped. Draco smiled at him, then looked very serious for a minute. "Harry? Have you .... What have you done before?" Harry frowned. "What do you mean?" he asked. "You mean like

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... sex?" He blushed and looked away. "Yes." Draco rocked his erection against Harry for a moment, reminding him of the situation he was in. "I presume when you said anything, you weren't talking about playing chess." "No, I wasn't talking about chess," Harry murmured. "I've never done it before, but I mean I'm ... willing .... That is if that's what you want ...." He looked up at Draco's face and he felt like his heart might explode. "With anyone?" Draco asked. Harry shook his head. "No one else," he whispered. "And you want to do this with me?" Draco was really surprised. Harry bit his lip. "I --" he began, but then he simply nodded, not trusting himself to speak. "Which way?" Draco asked, his cock twitching as he envisioned the possibilities. Harry bit his lip harder. "I I don't know. Which I mean what do you think?" He was painfully hard now. He'd never had so many erections in such a short amount of time. "Gods, Harry!" Draco was leaking pre-come now, and Harry's cock against his arse made him rock back against it. "I want ...." Harry stared up at Draco and squirmed a bit beneath him. "What?" he whispered desperately. Draco answered by reaching for the lube again and leaning forward to kiss Harry. Harry kissed him back, eyes sliding closed and heart speeding up even more. All he could hear was its pounding and the small noises his and Draco's lips made as they kissed each other senseless. Was he really about to have sex, real sex? He could barely process it. Draco deepened his kiss, slipping his tongue in to plumb Harry's mouth. With one hand, he dipped his fingers into the lube and then reached behind, slipping them into himself. Harry didn't know what Draco was doing, but every time he made the smallest movement, his cock brushed against Draco's arse and he groaned at the wonderful friction. "Mmm, fuck," he breathed. Draco kissed along Harry's jaw, having worked two fingers into himself and breathing deeply to try to relax enough for a third. He whispered in Harry's ear, "Yes, that is the idea." Harry moaned at that and kissed Draco again. "What are you

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doing?" he asked breathlessly, feeling as if he were missing something. Draco sat up a bit and dipped the fingers of his other hand into the lube. He reached back to grasp Harry's cock, slicking it. Harry gritted his teeth and threw his head back. "Ah!" he cried as Draco's touch sent the most intense tingles up his spine. He knew exactly what was going on now. Draco wanted Harry to fuck him. Holy. Fucking. Shit. Harry almost came at the thought. Draco looked Harry in the eyes. "You ready? You want this? Tell me." "Yes. Yeah. Please," Harry said, grasping at Draco's arms. He felt like he was going to jump out of his skin. "Use the words and use my name," Draco said softly, rubbing the head of Harry's cock against his own entrance. Harry's cock jumped and if possible, became even harder. "I want to fuck you, Draco. I want to fuck you," he said tightly. He was almost sobbing with need. "I want to be inside you." Draco smiled, his own cock answering the words, pulsing. He leant back, allowing his own weight to bring himself down on Harry gradually. He felt the head of Harry's cock breach him and groaned loudly, trembling. "Oh, fuck!" Harry let out, squeezing his eyes shut. He didn't know if Draco had ever done this before; he hadn't asked. It had to hurt at least a little bit, even if Draco had done it before. Harry tried to keep completely still, despite it being against everything his body was telling him. He wasn't going to move until Draco gave him the okay. Draco hissed, and he wasn't sure whether it was in pleasure or pain. Probably both. He slid down, forcing himself to relax and keep moving until his balls were pressed against Harry's belly. Harry could hardly breathe, and it was a moment before he noticed that he wasn't breathing. He took in a lungful of air and gritted his teeth even harder. He gripped Draco's sides and hoped that he would be able to hold out. Draco was fully seated and breathing deep. He finally relaxed a bit and opened his eyes, looking at Harry. "Harry?" "Hmm?" Harry forced out, cracking one eye open. Fucking shit. Draco looked good on top of him.

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Draco was trembling and, looking into Harry's eyes, said, "Fuck me, Harry." Harry let out a very long, low moan and slammed his hips up. He'd never felt anything so tight in his life. He hadn't thought anything could be that tight. He ran his hands across Draco's clothed upper body, his arms, his chest, his stomach; he couldn't get enough of him. Draco began to rock, meeting Harry's thrusts. It felt truly amazing to have Harry inside him. "Merlin, you feel amazing," Harry panted. Draco probably couldn't even understand what he was saying. He was practically an incoherent blob of completely aroused goo. He thrust up again and again, hoping that he wasn't hurting Draco, but unable to stop. "Yes, Harry," Draco sobbed. "Fuck me!" He was rocking, his hands clenched on Harry's shoulders as he moaned with each thrust. Harry was tossing his head all around, his hair clinging to his sweaty forehead. "You're so tight, Draco. Merlin, so tight," he gasped. He slammed his hips up harder, wondering just how far inside Draco's body he was. Draco was getting dizzy, which meant he was either going to come or pass out; he wasn't sure which. He bent his head and leant forward more, letting Harry do most the work. Something about the angle changed the feeling and then Harry's cock hit something inside of him. Something amazing. He screamed and sobbed Harry's name. Harry didn't know what he did, but he was pretty sure it was something good. He thrust again and again, breathing heavily, his chest heaving. He knew he wasn't going to last much longer. If he hadn't already come that morning, he probably wouldn't have even lasted this long. Draco felt like Harry had somehow opened him up inside. He was flying, and it wasn't like coming usually was. It was less focused in his cock but seemed to ripple out from some point inside him. He wasn't even aware that he was shouting Harry's name. Harry was on the very brink of an orgasm. When Draco came and shouted his name like nothing else mattered in the entire world, Harry couldn't hold back any longer. He came with a wild shout of, "Yes, Draco!" and emptied himself into Draco's arse. Draco slumped forward, his head resting beside Harry's, his face

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pressed into his hair. "Definitely worth dying for," he muttered. Harry didn't really understand what that meant, but he didn't say so. He wrapped his arms around Draco and pulled him down to lie on top of him. He kissed his hair and took deep breaths, calming himself. "It was perfect," he whispered so quietly, Draco might not have heard him. Draco was exhausted. He lay panting and probably, from what he could tell, going in and out of consciousness. "You all right?" Harry asked gently, tucking Draco's hair behind his ear. Draco's eyes were closed and his breathing slowed, his body relaxing. He didn't hear Harry. Harry's eyes widened. Had Draco passed out or something? He hadn't meant to be that rough. "Draco?" Harry asked a little louder, shaking him lightly. "Mmmm," Draco murmured but didn't open his eyes. Harry let out a sigh of relief. "I thought you had passed out." He laughed, stroking Draco's hair again. "Mmm, I think I did," Draco said with a sigh. Harry smirked. He couldn't resist. "That good, eh?" he asked, grinning from ear to ear. "Yes," Draco whispered. "You are eloquent as always." Draco squirmed a bit. "I think I need to move." Harry nodded and let him go, allowing him to sit up. Draco didn't sit up, he slid up, moaning as Harry's cock slid out of him. He fell to the side, curling against Harry with his head on the other boy's shoulder. Harry smiled and stared up at the ceiling, tracing circles on Draco's shirt-clad back. "Mmmm, we just woke up and I swear I'm ready to go to sleep again," he murmured. "Yes." Draco sighed, then smiled when he realised his hand was resting in more warm goo on Harry's chest. He swirled his fingers in the come and spread it over Harry's nipples. Harry shivered from the touch and grinned at Draco. What Draco was doing felt good, even if it was a bit strange. Draco rubbed Harry's nipples, his fingers still coated in lube and now come. Harry stretched his neck and bent for a kiss, letting one of his

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hands join Draco's on his chest. "Messy again," Draco murmured, still playing with Harry's nipples. Harry shivered. "Mmm, yes, but I don't mind this kind of mess," he said. "I think I'm out, though. I probably won't be able to get hard again for a few hours." "I think I will pass out if I come again right now." Draco chuckled. "I need sleep." "Mmm, yeah, me too," Harry said sighing. "How about we sleep for an hour or so and then show our faces to 'the world' so people don't start ripping the castle apart to find us?" "Mmm. Draco was asleep before he could think of anything else to say.

CHAPTER FIVE

What Is This?
Draco wasn't so disoriented when he woke this time, although he was sore. He winced as he sat up and then looked down at Harry sleeping. Was it possible for him to look even more beautiful? Draco sat watching him, wishing life would allow them this kind of quiet just a bit longer. Harry's eyelids fluttered in his sleep. He was having the most wonderful dream. He was disappointed when movement next to him stirred him from sleep, but then he remembered that Draco was still there with him and he smiled. Draco smiled a bit as well. "You are beautiful," he said quietly. Harry cracked his eyes barely open to see Draco staring at him, a look of adoration painting his sharp features. Harry's smile grew and he yawned. "I checked," Draco said. "It's nearly noon." Harry groaned. "I guess we should get going then?" he asked, closing his eyes again. Draco reached his hand out, running his fingers through that thoroughly, even more than usual, messy hair. Harry sighed contentedly at Draco's touch. He opened his eyes and sat up, crinkling his nose at the dried come coating his shirt. "Think you could manage one of your Cleaning Charms?" he asked. Draco nodded, feeling pretty messy as well. He reached for his wand and cast the spells. Harry stared at Draco, studied his face. He looked more subdued than earlier, maybe even a bit paler. There seemed to be something off about him. "You sure you're not ill?" he asked quietly, leaning in and kissing him very lightly. Draco's shirt was rumpled and the Cleaning Charms could only go so far. He shrugged and climbed out of bed. "Not in any way that means anything." Harry frowned at that, but let the subject drop. Draco had said

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something equally as abstract as that the last time Harry had asked about him being ill. He got the feeling Draco didn't want to talk about it. He climbed out of bed too and looked around him. "Where the sodding hell are my glasses?" he asked, searching. "You would think you would just Summon them like you do your wand," Draco teased. "Oh, heh, yeah, I guess that would work." Harry Summoned both his wand and his glasses and began to get dressed, watching Draco at the same time. Draco dressed slowly but carefully, in a way that showed he was accustomed to doing things in a certain order. A mirror materialised when he frowned at one point and he stepped in front of it to make sure he looked right. He picked up a comb that had appeared on the table and set about trying to fix his hair. He finally resorted to a charm for that as well. Harry laughed a bit at Draco as he himself simply threw his clothes on and shuffled his hair around with his hands. He did, at least, straighten his tie. Finally dressed and groomed as best as he could be, Draco turned and found Harry watching him. "Ready?" Harry frowned slightly. "No, but I have to go anyway," he said, stuffing his hands in his pockets. "So here we are again, back to our Houses," Draco smiled sadly, "and me hoping that you will kiss me before you leave." "No, I most certainly will not kiss you before I leave," Harry said sarcastically with a roll of his eyes. He grinned and raised his eyebrows. "Prat," Draco sneered, but smiled, standing with his hands on his hips. Grinning wickedly, Harry moved as quick as lightning and pinned Draco against the wall next to the door. He was a bit shorter, so it was kind of awkward, but it worked all the same. "What am I?" he asked teasingly. Draco's smirk grew. "A bloody Gryffindor prat." Harry smiled goofily. "And you love it," he said as he leant in and gave Draco a long open-mouthed kiss. Draco groaned into the kiss, his tongue twisting with Harry's. He loved being pinned like he was and, if Harry kept it up for very long,

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he doubted he would have the willpower to open the door. Harry kissed Draco for several moments before he had to tear himself away. "We have to go," he said with a laugh, shaking his head. "I swear you're trying to kill me." Draco was panting when Harry pulled away. "Whos trying to kill whom here?" he nearly whimpered, having to adjust his trousers to even stand up properly. "Sorry," Harry said with another laugh, backing away from Draco. He tried picturing Hagrid in a bikini to stop the sensation in his lower abdomen. Draco sighed, trying to slip his usual face on as he breathed. "After you, Potter," he said in a voice as close to normal as he could manage at that point. Harry grinned. "See you around, Malfoy," he said as he reached for the doorknob. "Hopefully literally," he added. Draco waited until Harry had left, then he leaned with his back against the door and took several big breaths. He had received more than he'd bargained for and was somewhat at a loss now. If he continued seeing Potter, it put everything in jeopardy. Who was he kidding, he thought, of course he would see him again. While he still had time to. Finally, he opened the door and left through it. When Harry had gone up to Gryffindor tower he'd been nearly attacked by Ron and Hermione. "Where have you been?" "What were you doing?" "Were you with someone?" "Were you outside that stupid room again?" Harry had put his hands up in defence. "I was outside 'that stupid room' again," he told them, trying his hardest not to let anything show on his face. Ron seemed to buy it, but Hermione kept giving him funny looks for the rest of the day. Harry hadn't seen Draco at any meals and was a bit worried. He was glad when he saw him heading for the seventh floor that night on the map. He grabbed his Potions book and his Cloak and set off for the Room of Requirement again. He brushed Ron and Hermione off in the common room, wanting to get away quickly. Draco didn't go to lunch or to dinner that day, spending most of

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his time in the Slytherin common room, where he was supposed to be studying. Slytherin didn't have Quidditch practice until Sunday, so no one seemed to have missed him yet. That evening, he headed to the Room of Requirement. He found the door waiting for him without really having to concentrate. Sometimes he wondered about the castle's magic and what kind of game it might be playing. When he stepped inside, he wasn't too surprised to find a very large fourposter bed and the same fireplace. But there were other amenities besides the bed and the fireplace like a table sitting there, already stocked with food. He scowled at the room. He hadn't eaten that day, and it seemed to be pushing a bit. He sat on the edge of the bed and waited to see if Harry would show. Harry arrived in minutes. The door was already there when he reached the seventh floor, probably because Draco was willingly letting him in now. He opened it up and stepped inside, taking off his Cloak as he did so. Draco let out a sigh when Harry entered into the room. He realised that he had been unsure as to whether or not the boy would actually return. "Hey," Harry said, dropping his Cloak and watching with mild interest as a chair materialised to catch it. He dropped his book as well. "Hungry?" he asked, eyeing the food. Draco shrugged. "Not really." He removed his robes too, laying them across the back of the chair already waiting. Harry raised an eyebrow. "I didn't see you at any meals today," he said, coming over to sit next to Draco. Draco reached for Harry's tie and used it to pull him in close, licking the other boy's lips. That made Harry forget about food. He sighed and let his tongue out to meet Draco's, wondering how he'd even gone the day without him. Draco sealed his lips over Harry's and thrust his tongue into his mouth. He brought his other hand up to remove Harry's glasses and reached back, setting them on the bedside table. "Mmmm," Harry moaned, gripping Draco's shirt tightly. Draco's tongue was very suggestive, and Harry was already getting aroused. Draco pulled Harry back onto the bed with him, ending with the other boy nearly on top of him. He used both hands to pull him

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close. Harry placed his knees on either side of Draco's body and continued his assault on the other boy's mouth. One of his hands wandered down to cup Draco's crotch. Harry smirked. Control forgotten, Draco arched and moaned as Harry's hand cupped him. He had been halfway hard from the moment Harry'd arrived. There was no halfway now. "I would've never known I had this effect on you," Harry said quietly into Draco's ear. "Why didn't you kiss me sooner, Draco Malfoy?" He smiled and gripped a little harder, moving his fingers just so. "You ask ... (gasp) ... questions ... (gasp) ... then make it hard ... (moan) ... to answer," Draco finally managed to say. Harry laughed a bit. He pulled his hand away from Draco's cock and stared down at him. "What do you want to do?" he asked, voice low. Draco looked back intently, his grey eyes seeming much darker. He tried to read Harry's eyes rather than think of an answer to his question. Finally, he said quietly, "I am at your mercy." Harry gazed at Draco just as powerfully. He leant in again and whispered, "Can I fuck you again?" It was a rather crude way of asking, but it certainly made Harry's own trousers tighten. Draco's eyes closed and he groaned, his hips rising in answer. "Yes," he hissed. Harry's heart leapt and he moaned quietly. He kissed Draco's neck and his face and his lips, all the while undoing Draco's trousers. He slipped his hand inside and stroked him a few times before sitting up, pulling off his own shirt, and grabbing the lube that had appeared. Draco raised his hands above his head, opening himself to Harry's choices and watching with eager eyes as Harry began to strip. Harry unbuttoned his own trousers before rolling away from Draco for a second to wriggle out of them and his pants. He kicked his shoes off the side of the bed and rolled back over to Draco, clad only in his socks and tie because he'd been too impatient to remove them. He pulled Draco's trousers and pants down in one quick swipe and removed his shoes too, throwing everything into a messy pile on the floor. He slid up Draco's body and began working on his shirt,

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fingers flying. Draco froze when Harry started unbuttoning his shirt. He had been so mesmerised watching the other boy strip, he had forgotten that Harry had not seen him without his shirt. And couldn't. He breathed deep, letting Harry undo the buttons and trying to think of what to say next. Harry's heart sped up as every button came loose. He kissed the exposed skin of Draco's chest and worked on the last three buttons, prepared to throw the garment out of his way just like all the rest. Draco's hands were still above his head, the cuffs of his shirt still buttoned. He crossed his arms, putting his hands on his elbows. The pose looked sexy enough, but would make it impossible to slide the shirt off him. He waited, tensing in expectation of the moment when Harry figured it out. Harry tried to pull Draco's shirt off of him, but paused when Draco prevented it. He raised an eyebrow at him and frowned. It was a strange thing to do. "You keep your socks and tie if you like, the shirt stays." Draco smirked, trying to make light of it. Harry grinned and shrugged, leaving Draco's tie on as well. He did look rather sexy with his shirt simply open like it was, the deep green of his tie making him look even paler. "The shirt stays then," he said, picking up the lube. Draco relaxed, enjoying the feeling of his arms being somewhat confined by the shirt and the relief of not having to explain. When Harry picked up the jar of lube, his pulse sped up again for an altogether different reason. Had he really fucked himself on Harry's cock only that morning? He felt both increased arousal and a little soreness at the memory. He hadn't told Harry that he had never done that before. Draco smiled up at him. Harry unscrewed the jar and coated his fingers liberally, blushing a little as he thought about what he was supposed to do next. He looked Draco in the eye and bent down to kiss him before making his next move. Draco kissed Harry but stayed passive, waiting and watching. He felt amazing, spread like he was, letting the other boy do what he wanted with him. Harry reached down between Draco's legs and trailed one finger

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across his entrance. Then he slowly began pushing it in. "Okay?" he asked. "Am I doing this right?" Draco bent his knees, putting his feet flat on the bed and spreading his legs as far as he could. He nodded, trying to relax. Harry nodded too, his cock twitching at the sight before him. He bit his lip hard and worked the one finger for a bit before slowly adding another one, looking up to study Draco's face for any signs of pain. Draco's face was calm, showing none of the confusion he felt. He didn't want to do anything that would distract Harry from what he was doing. He liked the feel of him touching him, yet it was hard to relax and let it happen, especially since he was still sore from the morning. He breathed deeply and kept his eyes focused on Harry. His cock twitched, and he felt so open and so needy right then. Harry took a big breath and began stretching Draco out, scissoring his fingers, not at all sure how long he was supposed to do it. "Should I put three?" he asked, looking up at Draco again. Draco gave a quick nod as he felt Harry's fingers move inside him. The earnest look in Harry's eyes was intoxicating and the feeling of his fingers a strange mixture of pain and pleasure that pushed Draco further towards some kind of edge. Harry nodded and pushed another finger inside, flexing them all a bit. He worked at it for a few more minutes and then looked up at Draco one last time. "Is that good?" he asked, feeling like an inexperienced idiot. Harry's eager, anxious face made Draco smirk. "Brilliant," he said softly. "Gonna fuck me sometime soon?" He couldn't help it. He had to tease Harry. Sometimes he thought it was the only thing that kept him going. Harry withdrew his fingers and narrowed his eyes, but he smiled too. "As you wish," he said, grabbing the lube again and spreading some across his length. He wasn't really sure what to do with Draco's legs, and his arse was a bit too low to really get a good angle. He manoeuvred Draco's limbs over his own shoulders, lining things up a bit better. Then he positioned himself and looked at Draco again, meeting his intense gaze. "Ready?" he asked. "Yes." Draco grinned. "Always ready for you." Harry nodded once more and then pushed the head of his cock

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into Draco's opening. He groaned, but waited for a response from Draco. Draco moaned, his eyes rolling back and his body arching. Pain, hot and sharp, followed by the most intense burst of pleasure up his spine made him feel like he was coming apart in two directions. "Go, yes," he managed to stammer, afraid that Harry would stop. Harry gripped Draco's legs and thrust in a bit more. His eyes closed in pleasure and his breathing became erratic. "Fuck," he let out. Apparently, it was his favourite word during sex. He pushed all the way in, pausing one last time to wait for Draco. He didn't know where his self-control was coming from. Draco's hands grabbed the covers under him, desperate for something to hold on to. "Oh, Gods," he gasped as Harry buried himself. He felt a burning inside and a feeling of fullness. He felt like Harry's cock caressed his spine. It wasn't a sensation he knew how to describe; pain and pleasure so much the same that they no longer had a reference point. "Fuck me, Harry, please," he sobbed when it seemed like the other had stopped moving. Harry nodded, his mouth actually going slack. He pulled back out slowly and then pushed back in. It was so much easier to move in this position. He soon found a steady pace, becoming entranced from the pleasure of it all and the sounds they each made. He moaned Draco's name over and over, quietly, as if being any louder would somehow shatter the moment. Draco couldn't have said whether it had been a minute or an hour as he lay there under Harry. Forever would have been fine with him. He was lost in a world of internal sensation. The feel of Harry's cock sliding past his tight opening, the way he could feel its progress inside him and the way he clutched at it again when it retreated. Somewhere in his mind he was aware that he was in that floating space again that meant he would come soon, even if he didn't know how to get there. Harry let his eyes close, speeding up just a bit, a building pressure in his groin. "Oh, fuck, I love this," he said just as quietly as before. "I love this so much, Draco. I love the way you look, and I love the way you feel, and I love the way you smell, everything. I love everything," he said, opening his eyes again to see Draco's face. Draco could hear Harry, but couldn't have formed a coherent

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response if his life had depended on it. Instead, he smiled, trying to focus his eyes on Harry's face, to see him. With hands, he groped for Harry's hands on his hips, laying his on top of the other boy's. "Yes," he thought he said, but didn't know whether or not it was aloud or only in his mind. Harry bit his lip and sped up just a bit more and then he was coming, coming so hard he thought his eyes crossed. He continued thrusting weakly, his body twitching with aftershocks. When Harry began moving faster, the angle changed and he was hitting that place inside Draco again. Draco's body arched with it and he came in hot spurts all over himself as he felt warmth and magic spreading inside him too. Draco's legs fell from Harry's shoulders as Harry slumped forward, feeling like a rag doll. He kissed Draco's lips again and again, whispering between kisses, "You're bloody amazing, you're bloody amazing, you're bloody amazing." Draco felt high. He didn't know what else to call it. It was like he was floating somewhere, with Harry pressed into him. He slid his arms around Harry, holding him close and smiling. It was probably a kind of dopey smile, but it was the best he could do. Harry smiled too and let out a sated sigh. He took in a deep breath and pulled Draco even closer, breathing in the smell of his skin and his hair. Was it possible to feel this way about someone after only two days? Or was he just going mad? Draco lay quietly, not wanting to disturb the moment. He felt good, so very good. He'd never thought he would ever feel this good. He just wished it could last. "Draco?" Harry whispered, running his hands underneath the back of Draco's shirt. "Mmm," Draco sighed, enjoying the feel of Harry's hands on his skin. He still seemed to be floating somewhere safe and unreal. He didn't want to leave that place. Harry let out a small laugh. "What is this?" he asked quietly, using one hand to gesture between them. "That was sex," Draco said with a sigh, trying to bring himself back mentally from wherever he had gone. He could feel the tension return to his body like cold water being poured into a glass. He sat up and looked down at Harry, his breath catching when he did, so he

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quickly looked away again. "Well, I know, but that's not what I meant," Harry said, sitting up as well. "It's just that, last night, I thought about ... us? I don't even know if we are an us. This whole thing just sort of happened ...." He spoke quietly, not wanting to make it sound like he didn't want what was happening between them. Draco frowned, pulling his knees up and putting his arms around them. "I don't see that it matters much. I have already told you I only have a couple of weeks," he said, sighing. Harry let out a frustrated huff. "How do you know that?" he asked angrily. "You won't even tell me the whole story." "I've told you all that matters. I have been given orders that I either carry out, die trying to carry out, or will be killed for not doing. It's really pretty simple to grasp," Draco snapped. Harry narrowed his eyes. "You don't have to do it, you know. Whatever it is," he said, looking away and crossing his arms over his chest. "Did you bring the book?" Draco asked, sitting up and starting to button his shirt. Harry rolled his eyes at the abrupt change of subject. He wasn't going to drop it, but perhaps now wasn't the best time. "Yeah," he said shortly, watching Draco button his shirt back up. "Well, get it." Draco said, sighing again. He finished the buttons and reached for his wand, performing a Cleaning Charm on himself. Then he turned to Harry, raising an eyebrow by way of question. Harry gave a curt nod, not looking Draco in the eyes. Everything felt colder all of a sudden; he didn't like it much. Draco cast the spell, his chest tightening at the unhappy look in Harry's eyes. He couldn't help it, he told himself. If Potter went all emotional about this, it would just make it all harder in the end. "Thanks," Harry muttered, getting to his feet. He didn't bother putting any of his clothes on and simply walked over and picked up his book from where he had dropped it. He came back over to the bed and flopped down on it, tossing the book to Draco as he did. Draco was distracted again by the sight of Harry walking naked in front of him; his breathing hitched and he felt a thrill down his spine. It was almost embarrassing; Harry had just shagged him into the mattress and he still wanted more. He closed his eyes and almost

WHAT IS THIS? missed it when Harry threw the book to him.

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CHAPTER SIX

Better Late, Than Never


"It's just an old Potions book," Harry said simply, scooting up close to Draco so he could tell him about the book as he looked at it. "It was owned by some bloke called the Half-Blood Prince; dunno what that means, but there you have it." Draco's eyes widened a bit and then he opened the book and looked at the flyleaf with the name, frowning. He began turning pages, looking at all the changes that had been made to them. "There are modified versions of almost all the potions. There are even some spells in there," Harry said, flipping the book for Draco to show him some of the spells. "I don't know what all of them do, but I have used some really great ones. Whoever this Prince was, he was brilliant." Draco nodded, getting caught up in the notations. He was muttering things under this breath. "Umm, that would work," and "Never would have thought of that," and "Really now ..." Harry raised an eyebrow. "Interesting?" he asked, smiling slightly. He leant in more and rested his chin on Draco's shoulder, wanting the new-found comfort between them to return. Draco's eyes unfocused for a moment at Harry's touch, and he completely lost track of what he'd been reading. "Mmm," he hummed. "Oh," Harry said suddenly, completely oblivious to what his touch did to Draco. He pointed to the word Sectumsempra written on the page. "Look at this spell, it says it's for enemies, but I have no clue what it does. I haven't really had a chance to test it out. I don't know if it would be a good idea to anyway ." Draco's eyes snapped back to the page and narrowed. He frowned. "You never studied Latin, did you?" he asked with a sigh. He couldn't believe how bad the pre-Hogwarts education was for most of the students. "No," Harry said, laughing. "Where on earth would I have learnt

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that? The Muggle primary school I went to?" "I started learning Latin when I was six," Draco drawled. It wasn't as if his opinion of Muggles could really go much further down, but it still shocked him that they had allowed Harry to be raised that way. "Well, we can't all be pureblooded rich kids, can we?" Harry said with a raised eyebrow. "Why do you bring up Latin anyway?" Draco rolled his eyes and snorted. "Have you missed the fact that most our spells are based on Latin?" He turned his face to look at Harry. Probably a mistake, that. Looking into Harry's eyes made his brain stop dead again. "Well, I know that's where they come from, but it doesn't mean I know the language," Harry said with a shrug, leaning in to carelessly kiss the end of Draco's nose. Without thinking, Draco lifted his face so that the kiss landed not on his nose, but his lips. He sucked in a breath, the book forgotten in his lap, and brought one hand up to lay a palm against Harry's cheek. Harry let his eyes fall shut, sighing into the unexpected kiss. "Mmm," he let out slowly, running circle patterns on the skin of Draco's leg. Draco's mouth opened, his tongue tracing Harry's lips and his body trembling again under the rush of feeling. Harry leant into the kiss and moaned. He broke it and pressed his forehead against Draco's, breathing heavily and quietly at the same time. "How do you do this to me?" he asked in an almost pained voice. Draco snorted, his hand sliding back into Harry's hair and his other supporting his own weight lest he fall back on the bed, which he actually wanted to do. The only thing he wanted right then was Harry. "I wish we never had to leave this room." "Me too," Harry answered, eyes half-lidded. "You have no idea how much I never want to leave here." He kissed Draco again, stroking his hair. Draco gave up trying to stay upright, allowing the weight of Harry leaning into him to bring them both down to the mattress again. One hand clenched in Harry's hair while the other wrapped around his waist. He kissed like he needed it to live, which he found ironic when it occurred to him.

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"Fuck, Draco, you're amazing," Harry whispered, kissing every part of Draco he could reach. "I want to do this all day, every minute. Merlin, I would if I could." He was desperate, like someone might come and pull Draco out from under him and drag him away. Draco groaned under the assault of Harry's kisses. "Amazing, yes," he gasped, lying there, allowing Harry to touch him. Unsurprisingly, he was hard again and his skin seemed on fire. Harry wasn't even sure why he was having such amazingly strong feelings for Draco, whom he had disliked greatly only a few days ago. He felt like he actually trusted him, like there was a sort of similarity between them that allowed him to feel this way. He felt insane; he felt drunk. Everything about Draco Malfoy had intoxicated him, and he didn't even know how it had happened. Draco felt dizzy again, overwhelmed by the intensity of Harry's attention, touches, and the energy that was Harry's magic. Harry was naked and yet, it did not make him look vulnerable. It made him look stronger somehow. Draco had a moment where he wondered what would have happened if he had kissed Harry a year ago instead of now. But then he shoved the thought aside, knowing how useless it was. He tried to shove all thought away, just touching and kissing Harry. Harry reached down and began slowly undoing the buttons of Draco's shirt again. He wanted to feel Draco's body against his own, wanted to kiss and lick every inch of that wonderfully gorgeous, pale skin. His cock twitched at the thought, and Harry knew that Draco had to have some sort of magical ability to turn him on. There wasn't any other explanation; there couldn't be. Draco lay spread under Harry's touch like some kind of sacrifice. He smiled dreamily, thinking that it would be the perfect way to die. He was sighing and mewing like a kitten at that point, and didn't care what he looked like. Harry finished with the buttons and slid down Draco's body, taking a nipple into his mouth and sucking. He used one hand to reach down and rest against Draco's inner-thigh, and he pressed the other one flat against Draco's stomach, trying to touch as much skin as possible. "Oh, Gods, yes," Draco gasped when Harry's mouth closed on his nipple and his hands moved over him. His fingers in Harry's hair

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were clenching and pulling at those thick strands. Harry licked his way over to Draco's right nipple, sucking on it as well. He moved the hand on Draco's thigh over a bit and cupped his balls, squeezing them lightly as he moaned against Draco's skin. "Oh, Merlin," Draco moaned as well, his body shaking and his head tossing from side to side. Harry looked up at Draco. He looked so gorgeous tossing around as he was. He licked his way down Draco's chest and stomach until his hands were gripping the backs of Draco's knees and Draco's cock was directly in front of him. He knew what he wanted to do, but he wasn't sure if he was going to be any good at it. He laughed a bit on the inside at the fact that they'd fucked before they'd sucked each other off. When Harry's hands rested on his knees, Draco realised what the other boy was going to do and his breath caught. He drew his own arms back and tried to prop himself up on his elbows so he could see. He was still dizzy, but he wasn't going to miss this. Harry licked his lips and then looked up at Draco. Their eyes locked and Harry brought one hand up and slowly grasped Draco's cock, facing it toward himself. He bent forward until he was so close to Draco, he could have stuck out his tongue and licked him. He breathed on it a few times and then closed his eyes and took just the head into his mouth. "Oh, Gods!" Draco nearly choked on the words, and then he shuddered, his eyes closing as his head fell back. Harry figured that reaction was good. It felt a bit odd to have Draco's cock in his mouth, but he also loved it because of what it was doing to the boy beneath him. He sucked Draco inside until he was a little more than halfway in, but he couldn't go any further without gagging. Draco gasped and sighed. He gave up trying to watch and threw his arms out, grasping at the bed covers. "Harry, oh, yes, please," he babbled. Harry grinned around Draco's cock, loving the sounds he was making and the things he was saying. He drew back and licked the head again, sticking his tongue into the slit before licking along the entire length until he was at the base of it. He bent lower and mouthed along Draco's balls, sucking each of them in turn, and

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letting out a little moan. "Yes, yes, oh, Gods, yes!" Draco chanted, his body trembling. Harry Potter was doing this to him. The boy who had probably caused him the most pain in his life was now giving the most pleasure he had ever felt. Harry returned to Draco's length and lowered his mouth over it again. He began bobbing his head freely, dragging his tongue against the underside of Draco's cock. He tried to take him in deeper and managed to a little bit, although not much. It was a bit frustrating; he wanted to give Draco as much pleasure as possible. Draco had begun sobbing. "Yes, Gods, you are amazing, Harry!" He was gripping the covers. "Close, so close!" Harry increased his efforts, his heart speeding up. He thought for a second about pulling away from Draco while he came, but then took him in as deep as he could, ready and waiting, while he worked his tongue furiously. Draco felt the tremors focus inward until he came, his whole body going rigid, and it felt like he was pouring his life into Harry in that moment. He was almost surprised, and maybe even a touch disappointed, that he didn't die right then. Harry tried to get it all, but, inevitably, some escaped him out the side of his mouth. It tasted a bit strange and slightly bitter, but it was Draco, and that made it ten times better. Draco lay panting, his head swimming. "Harry, Harry," he whispered over and over again. Harry smiled and crawled back up Draco's body. He smoothed his sweaty hair back away from his face and simply looked down at him. He was so gorgeous; he really was. All sharp angles and points while also looking soft. Harry'd never really looked at him before. He'd always known Draco was handsome, in the same way he'd known other boys were handsome, but that wasn't it. Draco was beautiful when Harry was allowed to look at him without feeling anger, resentment or hatred. He was beautiful. "Harry, please," Draco begged. "Please." He tried to lift his arms but they seemed very heavy. Harry's brows pulled together. "What is it?" he asked concernedly, stroking Draco's face. Draco sighed, trying to think of what he wanted, what he could

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actually give voice to. He sighed, instead asking, "Kiss me." Harry sighed in relief; he seemed to do that a lot where Draco was concerned. "I can do that," he whispered, leaning in to do so. Harry's breath in his, the taste of his lips, and the feel of him pressing down made Draco feel more whole, as if he were somehow giving back the energy he'd taken. It was a strange notion, Draco thought. He slid his hands weakly up Harry's arms and around his neck, feeling like he would never get enough. Harry hissed with pleasure. How could anything feel so good? It seemed impossible and yet there he was, in a bed with Draco Malfoy, the last person on earth he would've ever thought he'd end up with. He wanted to tell Draco how he felt, but he didn't know how. "Draco," he said. "Draco. Draco. Draco. I don't ... (kiss) ... know what to say or how to say it, but ... (kiss) ... Merlin, I feel like you're the only person in the world who can make me feel this way ... (kiss) ... I feel like everything's upside down ... (kiss) ... like everything's gone all crazy, but I don't ... (kiss) ... care, because I think I'm ...." Draco had to be delirious, because he felt like he was exactly where he should be. This felt so right and, yet, he knew it couldn't last. Harry bit his lip, wondering if he should finish his sentence at all. It had only been two days, and maybe he was mad, or lost in the moment, but he burned with what he wanted to say. Would it scare Draco away? Merlin, he hoped not. "Draco, I think I'm falling in love with you," he blurted. Harry's words seem to wake a part of Draco's mind. The part that smirked and strutted around the halls of Hogwarts. "You think?" he said, laughing. "Took you so long you almost missed your chance." His voice was almost the old sneer, but his arms had come around Harry's waist, holding him tight against him. Harry smiled slightly, blushing, and then he bit his lip. "Sorry," he said quietly, tracing Draco's eyebrows, nose, and lips with a finger. Draco looked into Harry's eyes, a soft smile on his lips. "If I hadn't kissed you in the bathroom, who knows what might have happened? Isn't this better than hexing each other?" "I think just a bit," said Harry gently. He bent his head and brushed his lips against Draco's before whispering against them, "I love you, you great, bloody, Slytherin prat."

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Draco felt awake and alive; it was a strange sensation. Harry's attention was like the sun, warming him through. "Well, better late than never, Potter." He smirked. Then he reached up, caressing Harry's face and playing with one of the dark locks that always seemed to be falling forward. "Late!" Harry laughed almost hysterically. "It's only been two days! I thought for sure you would throw me off you and high-tail it out of here after I said that." He felt like he was flying. His heart felt as light as a feather. His entire body felt as light as a feather. He wanted to jump up, and scream, and whoop, and dance around the room. He would've done exactly that, but he didn't want to move away from Draco. Draco sighed, rolling his eyes. "I began to suspect you felt something after the incident on the train," he said, sighing. "Well, I knew I had strong 'feelings' for you, and then you were following me obsessively. I figured if I kissed you, you would either kiss me back or kill me. Either way, I would have what I wanted." Harry frowned at that last line. "Draco, stop talking about all this dying shit," he said, flicking his nose. "It's morbid, and if anyone in here's going to die, it'll be me." Eyebrow raised, Draco grinned. "You are competing with me over which one of us will die first? Bloody Gryffindor!" Harry rolled his eyes and shook his head, grinning despite the seriousness of the situation. He wrapped his arms around Draco's neck and kissed him hard on the lips. "You're perfect," he said simply, wondering exactly when he'd begun thinking that. "Terribly, wonderfully, beautifully perfect." "That's another thing it's taken you too bloody long to figure out!" Draco said with a laugh. He reached down and gave Harry a light slap on the arse. Harry stared at Draco for a full five seconds after that and then rolled off him and began laughing like a mad man. He kicked his legs and threw his head back and just laughed like he hadn't in a long time. He couldn't remember ever being so happy. Draco sat up and looked down at Harry, smiling at him. He didn't know if he had ever seen anything like him before. "You've lost it, Potter," he said in a tone that implied everything wonderful his words didn't say.

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Harry finally stopped laughing and sighed happily. "I know," he said, and then he put his hands behind his head and sighed again. "It feels amazing to lose it. I wish I would've lost it a long time ago." "Me too," Draco said softly.

CHAPTER SEVEN

So We Understand Each Other?


Harry smiled and turned on his side to face Draco. "So ... what do you want to do now?" he asked, reaching out to play with a bit of Draco's hair. "Well," Draco drawled, one side of his mouth curling up, "you do look good enough to eat." He ran his fingers down Harry's arm, caressing the soft underside. Harry's lower abdomen tingled. "Mmm, really?" he asked, waggling his eyebrows. "Yeah, I missed dinner," Draco said with a laugh. He let his fingers continue down to Harry's chest and circled a nipple, enjoying the texture as it hardened. "Mmm," Harry moaned. "That feels so good." He let his eyes fall closed, smiling like an idiot. Draco brought himself up on his knees, trailing fingers over to the other nipple while he brought his mouth down on the hardened tissue of the first. He sucked and tongued it. Harry sucked in a breath, arching a bit. "Ah!" he let out, bringing one hand up to tangle in his own hair. Encouraged by Harry's response, Draco moved over to the other nipple while his hand smoothed down Harry's abdomen, caressing his ribs and then his belly. Was there anything in the world better than this? Was there? Truly? Even if there was, Harry still wouldn't have left Draco for anything. Draco's tongue on his skin was so... wet, and long, and good. Everything about the boy was good. Harry would've sworn that he was made from sex; pure fucking sex. Draco loved the feel of Harry's stomach and the way it jumped slightly under his touch. And then he reached the place where soft curls met his fingertips and the pleasure and excitement ran up his arm and down his body. He slid his long fingers into that soft hair, caressing around the base of Harry's cock as he tongued the other

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boy's nipple. Harry arched up, throwing one leg over Draco's back. "Oh, fucking hell," he said, panting heavily. He scratched down his own stomach, nearly maddened by Draco's teasing touch. Draco laughed around the nipple in his mouth. His fingers carded through the thick curls while he began to kiss and nibble the same path down Harry's stomach. Draco's fingers were going to drive Harry insane. He needed something, anything, to pay attention to his throbbing erection. His mouth watered with anticipation. Fuck, he wanted Draco so badly; he wanted his mouth on his cock, and he wanted to see those perfect lips stretched around him. Draco loved the taste of Harry's skin. He loved the feel of his muscles straining under him. He mouthed and tongued past his belly and down to that soft hair as his hand trailed down to pet the soft skin of Harry's balls. Harry's cock was hard, red, and leaking. Draco drew back a bit, looking down at the thick shaft, and wondered over the fact that he had already taken it inside himself twice. "Ngh, Draco," Harry pleaded, making a strange sound in the back of his throat. He grasped the blanket under him and pulled, so lost he probably could've died right then and not noticed. Draco looked up, grinning at Harry. He licked his lips and waggled his eyebrows at his lover. "Want something?" "Yes!" Harry cried, regretting his own teasing now. "Yes, please!" He pushed his hips up to try and rub against anything, but it was in vain as his cock remained untouched. Draco chuckled, his own cock jumping the sight of the panting, flushed Gryffindor. "Tell me what to do, Harry. Say it." "Suck me off!" Harry demanded impatiently. "Fucking suck my cock, please!" He had discovered another thing about sex: dirty talk was very good. That was what Draco wanted to hear. It had even turned him on hearing Harry telling him to fuck off outside the classroom. This ... this was so hot he felt himself flush as well. He brought his hand up to grasp the base of Harry's cock with his fingers as he stuck out his tongue and gave the head a long, slow lick. His eyes never left off watching Harry's face as he did. Harry squeezed his eyes shut at that first burst of sensation, but

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then shook his head firmly. Fucking sod it all, he was going to watch this. He forced himself to prop up on his elbows, his chest heaving like he had just run a marathon. "Oh, fuuuuuck," he moaned when he was able to see what Draco was doing to him. He looked like he belonged between Harry's legs. Draco licked his lips again, enjoying the new and sharp taste. He took his tongue and ran it around the head of Harry's cock before putting his lips into a pout and sliding them down over the head. Harry was determined to keep his eyes open. He'd never seen anything so fucking sexy in his entire life. He'd noticed that Draco got turned on a bit when he had told him to suck him off, so he did it again. "Suck it," he said huskily, eyes smouldering. "Mmm," Draco hummed around Harry's cock, Harry's words making his cock jump in response. He slid his fingers up so that, while he sucked the head of Harry's cock, his hand was stroking himself. He used his other hand to cup Harry's balls, softly tugging at the skin of his scrotum and petting him. "Oh, fuck yeah, like that," Harry said, panting even more heavily. He thrust his hips up just a bit, unable to resist. Where the fucking hell had Draco learned to give head like this? Draco felt his blood rushing again. His own cock twitched in time with Harry's movements as if it could feel what he did to the other boy. He rolled his lips over his teeth and slid further down on Harry's cock. It felt fucking amazing. He swirled his tongue over every bit of skin it could reach. He breathed through his nose in time with his movements. His hand on Harry's balls slipped lower, stroking and fondling the tight, sensitive skin. Harry's resolve crumpled and he had to fall to the bed. He threw his head back and let out a very long, low moan, thrusting up again. His toes curled, and his legs opened even wider than they already were, allowing Draco more room to work his insane magic. Draco was breathing nearly as hard as Harry as he bobbed his head faster, stroking Harry's cock with his hand in time with his mouth. He pressed the heel of his right hand against Harry's perineum as he slid his longest finger down to tease Harry's tight opening. Harry nearly jumped off the bed with pleasure when he felt Draco touch his entrance. Fuck, who would've ever thought that

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could feel so good? He actually tried to push against Draco's hand, wanting more. It didn't work obviously, as Draco had complete control down there. He groaned with arousal and frustration. Draco was delighted with Harry's reaction. He pulled his right hand away for a moment, bringing it up to rest along Harry's cock and inserting those fingers into his mouth on one of his downward plunges on Harry's shaft. Coated now with his saliva and Harry's precome, he brought his hand back down and pressed his slick fingers against Harry's opening, rubbing the tight ring of muscle. Harry gritted his teeth and tried to press against those fingers again. He wanted them in him. He wanted Draco inside him. The need was suddenly overwhelming. He quickly sat up halfway, breathing heavily. "Stop!" he cried. "Stop, wait!" Draco was completely immersed in the feeling of Harry's cock in his mouth, loving it. His fingers slid against Harry's entrance and he was feeling the tight sphincter opening under them. It took a minute to register what Harry was saying. He slowed his pace on Harry's cock, but didn't release him. He looked up, cock still in his mouth, fingers nearly in Harry's arse, and stopped. Harry nearly came at the sight before him, but somehow managed to hold it off. "Are you hard?" he asked desperately, sounding like a dying man. Draco smiled around Harry's cock, giving the head another tongue swirl before sliding his mouth off him and sitting up slightly. From this angle, Harry could see Draco's cock, hard and leaking against his belly. Draco nodded, his hands still holding Harry's cock and arse. Harry flopped back on the bed and sighed, almost sounding relieved. "Fuck me," he said throatily. "Fuck me, fuck me, fuck me." The string of words almost sounded like a sigh. Draco's eyes widened, his face suddenly very serious. "Harry?" he asked quietly. "Are you sure about this?" He nodded furiously, hardly able to stand it. "Yes. Yes, I'm sure," he said. Draco's left hand began almost casually caressing Harry's cock, stroking up and down the length. He grinned down at him. "Just so we understand each other," he smirked, "you, Harry Potter, want me, Draco Malfoy, to stick my cock in your arse and fuck you?"

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"Yes," Harry growled. "I want you to fuck me." He pushed his hips up again. Draco's laugh was both delighted and wicked. "Summon the lube, Harry," he instructed. "My hands are busy." To emphasise his point, he rubbed the tip of his finger against Harry's entrance and brought his palm over the head of Harry's cock. Harry groaned and stuck his hand out. "Accio lube," he nearly cried. It came zooming over with such force that it actually hurt a little as it smacked into his hand. He tossed it down to Draco and then shook his head to get his hair out of his eyes, watching the other boy. Draco could imagine his face would be sore the next day, as unaccustomed as he had become to smiling. Now, he had a grin stretched across his lips at the amazing fucking sight of Harry Potter, naked and begging him to fuck him. He reluctantly released Harry's arse to dip his fingers in the lovely scented oil the room had provided them. First, he reached down and coated Harry's cock, making the strokes with his other hand smoother. Then he reached for his own cock, having to take a deep breath to steady himself before touching himself. He certainly didn't want to come yet. Then he scooped a liberal amount of the lube and reached again for Harry's arse. Harry was so turned on that the tip of Draco's finger slid easily past that first ring of resistance. He stopped, breathing hard, and allowed himself to savour the moment. Harry bore down on the finger, biting his lip. It didn't hurt, just felt a bit strange, but fucking good, too. "Yes," he said. "Harry," Draco said quietly. "Don't push yet. Relax. Let me do this." He didn't move his finger, holding it just inside Harry's entrance. Harry took a very deep breath. It was so hard, but he did as he was told and tried to keep still, keeping his eyes shut tight. Draco nodded when he felt Harry relax. "Bend your knees. Like before," he said, sliding the well-oiled finger in slowly to the next knuckle. Harry nodded and brought his legs up, feeling so ... safe lying there. It was so odd. Where were these feelings coming from? "Yes, that's it," Draco said, voice as smooth and soothing as the oil on his fingers. He slid the long digit in to the last knuckle and felt

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the amazing power of Harry's body. He sighed and then slid the finger in and out slowly several times, making sure it moved without resistance before adding a second. Harry swallowed. The second finger still didn't hurt; it just felt even odder than the first finger alone. He began tracing shapes and patterns on his own stomach and chest, keeping his eyes closed still, and taking deep, calming breaths. Draco was breathing with Harry at this point, feeling his own body responding to the movements of his fingers. His cock already twitching as the fingers gave him a sense of what it would feel like to be inside the other boy. His concentration was completely on Harry's reactions, and he sighed with the other when the third finger was added. Harry wished it would just happen already. Was this what it was like to be in love? Merlin, how could a thing so huge happen in so little time? Draco had tamed Harry's pure lust from before, and he now wanted the sex just so he could feel Draco inside him, just so he could give him something that was maybe worthwhile. Draco's eyes were half-closed as he concentrated on Harry. He twisted his long fingers, making sure the boy was ready, and then, with a quirk of a smile, he opened his eyes fully and looked at Harry just before he reached for Harry's prostate. Harry's entire body jerked as he gasped. A sharp bolt of pleasure shot up his spine. "What was that?" he breathed, arching. Draco's smile was almost predatory and certainly very pleased as he did it again, watching Harry writhe on his hand. "Mmmm, fuck me," Harry said, the lust making a full comeback. "Fuck me now. Hard. Now." Draco raised an eyebrow and smiled as he slid his fingers out of Harry and moved in until his own thighs were pressed against the other boy's. "Lift your legs and hold them to you with your hands under your knees," he said. He used his own right hand to position himself, rubbing the slippery head of his cock in circles at Harry's entrance. Harry nodded and grabbed his legs, picturing what Draco's cock looked like at his entrance right then. He felt so open in this position, so deliciously on display. He was nearly salivating. Draco's breath caught again at the sight of Harry spread for him.

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He looked directly into Harry's eyes as he pressed gently forward, feeling only slight resistance as the head of his cock breached the other boy. Harry moaned. It didn't hurt that badly; he was already too relaxed. He gripped his legs tighter, trying to open them even wider. "Oh, Gods," Draco moaned, his head falling back. He had been so focused on Harry he hadn't been truly prepared for how it would feel. He was panting now, trying to control himself as he slid slowly forward. Harry moaned during every single second of Draco filling him. It felt so strange, but everything about it was beautiful. He savoured it, loving it, loving the boy inside him, knowing somehow that Draco would be the only person ever allowed to do this to him. "Harry, Harry," Draco whispered over and over again as he felt himself buried inside. He didn't stop until he was fully seated in Harry with his balls pressed against Harry's arse. He felt light-headed again and he leant forward, using one arm to brace himself on the bed, his other hand still lightly holding Harry's cock. "Draco," Harry answered. Merlin, he loved this boy. He knew he loved him. His entire body ached with it. He let go of one of his legs and reached up to move Draco's hair out of his face and tuck it behind his ear. He smiled when it simply fell over his face again. "Legs around," Draco gasped. He had taken a minute to collect himself, and now he began a slow withdrawal, almost to the head. Harry complied, wrapping his legs around Draco, thankful that he could finally feel his skin. "I love you," he half-whispered, halfgasped. Part of Draco was glad he'd played Quidditch all these years, for this moment alone, if no other. He flexed his muscles and was able to slide smoothly forward into Harry. Harry gasped and rocked with Draco, feeling so full and strangely sexy like this. He felt complete, and warm, and happy. He was filled to the brim with happiness and sex. Sliding home, Draco thought. That was what it felt like excitement, peace, desire, completion. He didn't want to ever move and yet he couldn't hold still. He took several steadying breaths and looked down at Harry again, his grey eyes looking into Harry's green. "Ready?" he asked breathlessly.

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Harry nodded. "Yes," he whispered, clutching at Draco's back. Draco nodded and took another deep breath, and then he began to move. He moved like he flew, with muscles tight but flexible on the broom. He slid back and then in again in fluid motions that began slow but picked up the pace quickly. Harry gasped, throwing his head back. He was being fucked. It was all he could think. It did hurt a bit, definitely hurt, but it wasn't nearly enough to make him want to stop, or to make it not feel good. "Fuck me, Draco! Fuck me!" he cried, clutching at Draco harder. Draco found a rhythm, but he knew he didn't have the right angle yet. He spread his own legs a bit, taking himself lower and deeper, trying to position himself to hit home for Harry. Harry was meeting every one of Draco's thrusts with enthusiasm. Merlin, it felt so good to just be taken, to just feel like he could give this to Draco. He arched up and then, wham, there was that spark feeling again. He cried out and arched even higher. White-hot, raw pleasure flooded his body. There was no way in hell he was going to last. Draco felt the shock go through Harry when he hit the right spot and from there he knew he could keep the angle. He was sweating and dizzy and loved every second of it. Harry was writhing in pleasure and Draco was the one making him feel that way. It thrilled him like nothing ever had. "Oh fuck, oh fuck, oh fuck!" Harry cried. "I love your fucking cock in me, Draco! I fucking love it!" He was slamming his hips upward now, eager and willing to do anything to make Draco push harder, go deeper, move faster. He was getting close, heat pooling in his groin. Draco's entire body flushed with heat at Harry's words. It was the most intense wave of desire, and ... oh, hell ... love, that he had ever felt. He was moving fast and hard now, panting and sweating as he worked himself deeper. Harry started making noises from the back of his throat. He was going to come, he was going to come, he was going to come, and then he did. More powerfully than he had ever come in his life. He groaned Draco's name as it seemed all the energy in his body was being pumped out of him. Draco was a fucking god; he had to be. Draco felt Harry's orgasm spreading in a wave of power before

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he felt his muscles clenching and his come spilling between their bodies. His own answered as he came screaming into Harry, the feeling so hot it almost burned. Draco buried his cock deep, his body arched and his head thrown back. He might have called it blacking out except that it was all white energy, not darkness. He hung suspended like that as waves of pleasure so good they almost hurt rippled along his spine. And then he really was dizzy again, collapsing forward to curl around Harry, his face buried against his chest and his arms around his waist. He lay panting, unsure if the frantic heartbeat he heard was his or Harry's. Harry sighed, so at peace with absolutely everything. He pushed his fingers through Draco's hair and stared happily up at the ceiling. "Mmm, that was really fucking fantastic," he said dreamily. "Mmhmm," was all Draco managed at that moment, feeling completely sated. Harry let out a quiet laugh and continued stroking Draco's hair. "I don't think we can sleep in here tonight," he said sadly. Draco sighed, but didn't move. Harry frowned a little. "Ron and Hermione are worried about me, I think," he said quietly after a while. "If I stay here again, Ron will notice and they'll come storming down here to find me." Draco laughed, even if it was weak, and then huffed. "That would be interesting," he said, face still pressed against Harry's chest. "Oh, Merlin," Harry said weakly. "Interesting is one word for it." He let out a small laugh. Draco considered briefly the picture of it and, if it wouldn't hurt Harry, he thought it might be amusing. "So we have to go back tonight," he said flatly. "Yeah," Harry said quietly. "I don't think I want them to know. I don't think they could handle it, especially Ron." "No one can know," Draco said, looking up at Harry. "I know," Harry said. "It would complicate things ... to say the least." Draco realised he would have to move soon. He was still embedded in Harry and his knees and thighs ached. He closed his eyes, enjoying the full contact for a minute longer. Harry ran his hands down Draco's back, feeling him beginning to shift around.

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Draco realised that his shirt was so soaked with sweat and come that it stuck to him now. He took a deep breath and slid from Harry with a shudder. He used his hands to push himself up and fell as much as climbed over Harry's leg and to the bed beside him. Harry let out a quiet moan and adjusted himself when Draco was off of him. He felt sore, but he had expected it. He wasn't really sure what to do now. He wasn't ready to leave yet, but he didn't know what else to talk about, and there was no way he was going to get another hard-on. He simply lay there and stared at Draco. Draco fell back and stared at the ceiling. "Can I borrow the book?" he asked when he could think again. Harry raised an eyebrow. He hadn't even let Ron borrow it. "What do you want to do with it?" he asked. Draco laughed. "Strange as it may seem, Potter, I want to read it." Harry frowned a bit. "Well... okay, but I'll need it back soon. If I'm suddenly bad at Potions again, don't you think Slughorn'll think something's up? "Oh, I don't know if I can stand to meet with you again so soon," Draco drawled, clearly sarcastic. "If we keep this up, the standing part might actually be a problem." Harry grinned and laughed. "I don't think it'll be a problem at all," he said. "I can stomach being on my back around you, actually I prefer it ... unless it's you who's on your back." Draco smirked. "I may need to be Ennervated before I can walk again." Harry laughed. "Am I too much for you to handle?" he asked with a suggestive raise of his eyebrows. Draco rolled his eyes and groaned, rolling onto his side to face Harry. "Not yet, but I bet you will be sore when you try to get up too." Harry groaned as well. "Probably," he said, not making any move to stand. He simply sighed and took a big breath, staring up at the ceiling again. "So, when?" Draco said, laying his head down again, still turned on his side so he could watch Harry. "When what?" asked Harry, turning to face Draco as well. Draco smiled sleepily. "When do we meet again? When can you get away?"

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"Oh." Harry smiled. "Tomorrow?" "I have Quidditch practise in the afternoon," Draco said with a sigh. "I will be lucky to be able sit on the broom, let alone fly." He smirked. Harry chuckled. "I wish you well," he said, reaching out and running a finger down the side of Draco's face. "You can punish me if it hurts too badly," he said, waggling his eyebrows. "Kinky, Potter." Draco laughed. "I had no idea." Harry laughed. "Neither did I," he said, scooting closer to Draco so that he was pressed against him. He quickly pulled away. "Eugh, you're all wet." "I wonder how that happened," Draco said with a laugh, and grabbed Harry, pulling him back and rubbing against him. Harry squirmed against Draco, trying to get away. "Stop!" he said, laughing. "Stop, it's cold! And quite disgusting," he added. Draco laughed and let go. "Well, not that kinky, I guess." He grinned. "Here," Harry said, smirking, pretending to reach behind himself, "let me wipe cold come all over you." "Didn't bother you this morning." Draco smiled but shook his head. Harry narrowed his eyes a bit. "That was different," he said, "and not cold." He tugged on Draco's shirt. "Take this wet thing off; I want to hug you." "I'll get my wand and clean up," Draco said, stretching a hand out and Summoning his wand. Harry frowned. "You could just take it off ..." he said slowly. "What? Do you have scrawny arms or something?" he teased. "Sure," Draco said. "Sticks for arms." He did a Cleaning Charm on himself and another on Harry without waiting to be asked. Harry's frown deepened. Draco was very strange about some things. "Er ... thanks," he said after Draco had done a charm. He sat up and winced before stretching his arms over his head and yawning. "Now if I can get back to the dorms without Snape catching me," Draco said, climbing out of the bed and wincing again as he did. "Don't get caught," Harry said, getting to his feet slowly. He suddenly remembered what Snape had been talking about with Draco during Slughorn's party. "Draco ... does Snape know about your ...

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'mission'?" "Yes," Draco said, picking up his shorts and trousers and sitting down gingerly on the edge of the chair to put them on. Harry frowned. "Is he trying to help you?" he asked, barely able to keep the disgust from his voice. He wished Draco would tell him what he was doing. It would make things so much easier. Draco stood, tucking his now dry shirt back into his trousers. "I am not going to talk about him," he said. Harry sighed angrily. "If you would just tell me," he said, glaring at the back of Draco's head. Draco sighed, sitting back down on the edge of the bed with his back to Harry. He let his head fall forward, his chin on his chest. "You want me to betray everyone and everything." Harry bit his lip and threw on his trousers real quick before coming to sit next to Draco. "You can't possibly think I can ignore this," he said quietly. "I don't want you to kill someone .... Do you have any idea what could happen if you do?" Draco laughed harshly. "Do you have any fucking clue what will happen to me if I don't?" Harry narrowed his eyes. "Go to Dumbledore then," he said fiercely. "If you tell him, you can get out of all this." "How would he do that?" Draco asked. "Have you seen him lately? He doesn't look ... well." "He's fine," Harry said quickly, although he himself didn't think Dumbledore looked too good. "I swear he could help you; he would help you if you'd just go to him." He was desperate and turned to face Draco, looking him in the eye. "Yeah, Potter. Do you remember me telling you that you are a terrible liar?" Draco put his face in his hands, rubbing his eyes. "So now I'm Potter again?" Harry said angrily. "Draco, I can't let you do what it is you have to do. You know I can't." Draco's head snapped up, his eyes flashing, "Yes, it's Potter when you are trying to get information out of me. When you are being the bloody Chosen One!" Harry's eyes flashed too. "It's sort of an all day job," he spat angrily. "What do you expect me to do when you tell me you're going to kill someone? Or that you're, what was it? Going to let evil into Hogwarts? What the bloody fuck is that supposed to mean?"

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"I said that I have been ordered to kill someone, not that I am actually going to do it!" Draco snapped at him. Harry let his head fall into his hands. "You're so bloody confusing," he said. "Tell me about it." Draco sneered. "Welcome to my life." Harry looked up again. "Stop acting like that," he said angrily. "Stop acting like you used to; I don't fucking like it." He stood up quickly and began throwing his clothes back on. He was angry that Draco wouldn't tell him what was going on, angry that Draco wouldn't take his help or advice. He wasn't going to sit there with Malfoy. Draco sighed. He'd known this wouldn't last. He just sat there staring at the floor and listening to Harry yell at him while he got dressed. Harry finished dressing and then Summoned his glasses and pushed them on roughly. He turned back to Draco furiously. "What, are you just going to sit there?" he asked, glaring. "Are you not going to say anything to me?" Draco closed his eyes, not answering Harry. He sat waiting for Harry to leave. He knew it was probably better for Harry if he just let him go. "Draco, stop!" Harry yelled, getting angrier because Draco wasn't talking to him. He wanted to shake him. He wanted to grab his shoulders and shake him until he said something. Draco was trying not to react, not to move. But Harry wasn't making this any easier. He started to tremble, his hands clenched into fists. Harry clenched his teeth and spun around, picking up his Cloak. He stormed over to the door and yanked it open. "Are you going to say anything to me?" he asked, looking over his shoulder. His voice was full of quiet anger, a warning. Draco didn't trust himself to answer. He gritted his teeth, holding the words in by force. Harry closed his eyes, hoping, praying that Draco would say something, but nothing came. "Fine," he said quietly in defeat, and he left, shutting the door behind him. Draco waited a minute, breathing hard and his jaw hurting from the effort of holding it closed. Then he fell back on the bed with a

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scream and rolled over. He screamed into the mattress, kicking his feet and flailing his arms. Tears spilled out of his eyes and he ended up curled into a foetal position, sobbing like a baby. Harry didn't go back to his common room. He just put his Cloak on and sat outside the portrait of the Fat Lady, invisible. He knew he wouldn't be able to stand being questioned about Draco by Ron and Hermione, and so he sat outside until well past midnight, silent tears leaking from his eyes. He felt like the biggest fool on the planet.

CHAPTER EIGHT

You Shatter Me
May 4 Harry had only had about an hour of sleep after he'd finally gone to bed. He didn't feel like moving, he didn't feel like eating, he didn't feel like doing anything. Ron literally pulled him out of bed the next morning. He argued with Ron and Hermione about going to breakfast, saying he wasn't hungry. "Harry!" Hermione had yelled at him. "This thing with Malfoy has to stop! It's making you crazy!" Harry had closed his eyes tightly. "Just shut up," he'd said meanly. "I'll go, just shut up." Hermione looked like she was going to cry, and Harry couldn't bring himself to comfort her. He did go to breakfast, but he didn't see Draco there. A part of him was glad that he didn't have to face him, but he couldn't help but worry. Draco didn't know how long he had lain in the room after Harry left. Finally, he'd pulled himself up and finished dressing. He'd had to do several charms to hide how bad his face looked. Luck was with him for once and he made it back to the dorms without getting caught, even if it was the middle of the night. He didn't move from his bed all morning. Crabbe and Goyle both came in to ask if he wanted to get up, but seemed relieved to be let loose of service for the day when he told them, "Fuck off and leave me alone." He debated Quidditch practise for a while with himself, but eventually decided to ignore that as well. He didn't know if it was because they were all afraid of him or just didn't give a damn, but no one bothered him for the rest of the day. When Harry didn't see Draco anywhere, all day long, he gave in to

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himself and checked the Marauder's Map to see where he was. He saw that he was in the Slytherin dungeons, where Harry had expected him to be, but it was nice to know for sure anyway. Fuck, why did he even care? Draco obviously didn't care much about him. Why had he been such a fucking sap and told him that he loved him? In the dungeon, time was hard to keep track of, especially when drifting in and out of consciousness through most of the day. Draco realised it was evening when he heard the first-years making a ruckus in the common room after dinner. He dragged himself out of bed and into the shower. He dressed again and slipped out of the dorms, heading for the seventh floor. Harry had kept his map nearby since dinner, periodically checking on Draco. When he saw that he was heading for the Room of Requirement, his stomach lurched. He wondered if he should go at all. No, I'm not going to go, he thought to himself, but the thought didn't last long. He was grabbing his Cloak and heading out the portrait hole within a few minutes. He ignored Ron and Hermione completely. When he reached the seventh floor, he didn't go in, he just stood outside, still wondering if he was an idiot to be doing this at all. He stood waiting for Draco, pressed up against the wall so that he wouldn't run into him. He still wasn't sure if he was going to allow Draco to see him at all. When Draco came around the corner, it took all Harry had not to reach out and touch him. He watched as Draco walked in front of the door three times, thinking the blond looked a bit nervous. Harry just stood there, still wondering what to do. Draco was almost afraid to go inside the room. He wasn't sure what he would find. He supposed his own ambivalence about his mission meant that the room was equally unclear of what he wanted. It meant that Draco never really knew what he would find on the other side of the door when he opened it. His hand was shaking as he reached for the handle and turned, opening the door and looking inside. He breathed a sigh of relief when he saw the sitting room instead of the huge room with the cabinet. Apparently, the room didn't want him to work on the cabinet tonight. He took several gulps of air and then stepped in, shutting the door behind him. Harry remained outside the room for a few more minutes, still battling with himself. Finally, he pulled his Cloak off and very, very

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quietly, he knocked. He took in a large breath and sighed, hoping that he was doing the right thing. Draco sat down on the sofa, his hand caressing the spot where Harry had been sitting. Had it really only been a few days? He had lost track of time. He closed his eyes, imagining Harry sitting there with that flushed and angry face. He wanted to kiss him again, to touch him. He sobbed, feeling like there was an iron band around his heart. He startled when he heard a sound at the door. Frowning, he got up and walked over, listening. Harry frowned when no one answered and he lost his nerve. He slid down to the floor and put his head in his hands, feeling even more foolish than before. "I'm sorry, Draco," he said quietly. Draco heard a sound again. Puzzled, he pulled his wand before opening the door. He was startled to find Harry sitting on the floor. Harry looked up quickly when the door opened, eyes wide. He didn't say anything, just stared. Draco stood silently looking down into those green eyes. They always seemed to undo him, and this time was no exception. He felt he should yell at Harry for being here again, but instead, he started trembling and gritted his teeth, trying to hold back the tears that were welling up in his eyes. "Draco, I --" Harry began, but he couldn't even speak. He got to his feet and stood in front of him, looking at the floor. Draco was losing the battle with himself and he knew it. The tears started rolling down his face. He turned his back on Harry, standing rigid and unable to move. Harry looked up and saw Draco crying. He felt like a complete and utter arsehole. "Draco, I'm I'm sorry," he said, just barely brushing his fingers over Draco's shoulder. His own eyes were starting to burn, but he held his tears off. Draco's stiffened at Harry's touch, gasping. His chin dropped to his chest and he was afraid to move. He should shove Harry away, but he didn't have the willpower to do it. Harry wanted to wrap his arms around Draco, but he was afraid to. He didn't know what Draco would do if he attempted it. He closed his eyes, the tears threatening to fall. "Do you want me to go?" he asked quietly. The trembling in Draco's body grew. He felt like he could shatter

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into a million pieces. He wanted more than anything in the world to take Harry in his arms. But if he did, it might cause more pain for Harry in the long run. He realised he was a coward, that he wanted this too much. "No," he whispered. Harry let out a quiet sigh of relief before taking a tiny step forward and touching Draco lightly again. When he didn't move away, Harry slowly wrapped his arms lightly around Draco's waist before resting his forehead on the back of his neck. "I'm sorry, Draco," he whispered again. "Oh, Gods," Draco sobbed, his head falling back. He was trembling violently now and he couldn't have stopped it to save his life. Harry hugged him tighter. "Shhh," he whispered. "It's okay, Draco." He felt a single tear slip from his eye. He would hold Draco forever if he had to. He felt so fucking stupid. How could he have left Draco? He knew what he was going through and yet he'd still left, just because Draco wasn't doing what Harry had wanted him to. He felt sick. Draco laid his hands on top of Harry's, squeezing them. He was dizzy and if Harry hadn't been holding him up at that moment, he realised he would have fallen. He swayed a bit and closed his eyes, trying to take deep breaths to steady himself. Harry didn't know how long they stood there like that. It felt like a very long time. "Let's go inside," he whispered, rocking Draco slightly. He would never have been able to believe how fragile Draco had become if he wasn't witnessing it for himself. Whatever he was doing was not good; it was affecting everything about the boy. He was thin, and paler than usual. Harry knew that he hadn't eaten in at least two days. Draco allowed himself to be led back into the room and sat down on the couch. The tea service had reappeared, along with a plate full of sandwiches. Draco leant back, closing his eyes and trying to reassure himself that, for now, at least, he could relax and enjoy being with Harry. "Are you okay?" Harry asked, sitting very close to Draco on the couch. He held his hand and stroked it with his thumb, trying to calm the boy, and himself for that matter. Draco had no answer for that question. So he did the only thing

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he wanted to do; he pulled on Harry's hand and brought him closer. He looked down into his face and gave a weak smile. Harry smiled back, sweet, beautiful, relief flooding every part of his body. "Let's not do that anymore," he said, stroking the side of Draco's face. Draco brought his mouth down, kissing Harry, tasting the salt of their tears mingled on their lips. He hummed into the other boy's mouth, a sense of peace filling him as Harry's breath mingled with his. Harry kissed back, feeling the world right itself. He pulled Draco down on top of him, holding him close. He didn't want to let Draco go ever again. Merlin, he didn't know if he would be able to. Draco devoured Harry's mouth, kissing and licking at those soft lips, his hands resting on Harry's chest and his thigh pressed between Harry's legs. Harry sighed into Draco's mouth, tingles shooting through him. He thrust against Draco's leg, not being able to help himself. It was all okay again. He had Draco back; one short day without him had felt like forever. Draco ground himself against Harry, feeling like it was all he needed. Everything was good as long as he was touching Harry. He began nibbling his way down Harry's jaw and neck. He was glad Harry wore Muggle clothes on the weekends because the loose neckline saved him from having to fumble with a tie. He found he wanted to suck at that hollow just above Harry's collarbone. He reached his hands down under the hem of the jersey Harry wore and pushed up under it, sighing when he felt warm skin. Harry moaned and arched into the touch. He wanted Draco to do whatever he felt like doing to him. He would give him complete control. "I'm yours, Draco," he gasped. "Whatever you want. I'm yours." Draco hummed against Harry and pulled back long enough to strip the shirt off before returning his mouth to the other boy's skin. He ran his deft fingers down Harry's ribs and along the muscles of his stomach until he reached the waistband of Harry's trousers. Harry moaned at Draco's touch. It felt so incredible, he didn't think he would ever get used to it. He lifted his hips to help Draco undress him, wanting what Draco was going to give him so badly, it

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hurt. Draco fumbled a bit with the strange Muggle trousers but managed to get the fasteners undone and strip Harry pretty quickly. As Harry lay on the couch naked, Draco managed to slip out of his own robes before sinking to his knees beside the couch and bringing his mouth down on the nearest of Harry's nipples, his hands playing over skin, reaching down. Harry was panting now, one hand in Draco's hair, the other in his own. Merlin, Draco sucking on his nipples felt more amazing than Harry thought it should. He could barely think anymore, he just wanted to feel. "Draco," he hissed. Draco slid one hand up Harry's chest, using his fingers to caress the nipple he had just been suckling. He kissed his way across his chest to the other, licking and nibbling at the hardening bud. His other hand rested just below Harry's belly button, caressing the soft curls there. Fuck, Draco was doing the teasing thing again. Tears actually began falling from Harry's eyes, the frustration, and hurt, and love, and utter craziness of the last few days finally catching up with him. Draco was lost in the sensation and taste of Harry. He felt so hungry for him. He felt like he could taste every part of him. He continued to kiss and suck on Harry's skin, down Harry's chest and over his belly, his hand caressing Harry's hip while the other stroked the nipple he had just left wet and hard. Harry arched again, savouring the feeling of Draco's lips moving across his skin. It felt like they were leaving a trail of fire wherever they went, wonderful, warm, arousing fire. Why couldn't this have happened to them sooner? Draco ran a hand down Harry's hip to his thigh and slid between his legs, gently pushing them apart. His right hand continued to stroke and play with Harry's chest, before following his mouth down. Draco's eyes focused on Harry's cock in front of him, hard and bobbing as if to get his attention. A small smile played on his lips before he moved beside it, bringing his face into the dark curls around the base, nuzzling and inhaling the musky scent. "Oh fuck, Draco!" Harry cried. His hands moved down to tangle in Draco's hair, but he didn't try to make him do anything, no matter how much he wanted to.

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Draco nuzzled, licked and sucked at the skin and hair around Harry's cock, his hand stroking his thighs and trailing fingertips up to Harry's perineum. The smell and taste was intoxicating. His right hand slid down slowly until he wrapped those long fingers around the base of Harry's erection. Harry threw his head back, and his mouth fell open in a silent scream. He dug his feet into the material of the couch, trying to do anything to keep from thrusting up into Draco's face. There was such a strong feeling of tingling pleasure in his lower abdomen. He knew that once Draco got going, he wasn't going to last long. Draco licked his lips and then brought his glistening wet mouth down over the now sticky head of Harry's cock. He opened his mouth, allowing his tongue to slide forward in the same fashion that he did when kissing. He searched the soft tissue and sucked the precome as if it were a sweet. "Oh, fucking hell!" Harry shouted, his voice cracking. He didn't know what to do with himself. He gripped Draco's hair, and then his own, and then the material of the couch. His thighs quivered, and his toes curled, and he felt so fucking incredible. Draco's hand moved between Harry's legs, gently cupping and squeezing his balls. His mouth slid further down over the sensitive ridge of the head of Harry's cock, tongue running circles around it. He sucked greedily, breathing through his nose in great lungfuls. Harry couldn't hold back anymore, he had to arch up. He made a long keening sound in the back of his throat. "Oh, fucking hell, Draco, fuck!" he babbled. "Ahh, suck me! Fucking hell, make me come!" Arching into Draco's mouth pushed Harry's cock toward the back of his throat. Draco swallowed around the thick organ and sucked hard, his hand at the base of Harry's cock keeping it from forcing too far in and choking him. He squeezed gently but firmly with both hands and felt the tightening in Harry's balls that signalled he would come. "Oh, fuck, oh fuck, oh fuck!" Harry cried as Draco nearly swallowed him whole. He came, shouting Draco's name like it would save his life, and maybe it did. He couldn't even breathe. Draco swallowed convulsively around Harry's cock, drinking in Harry's semen and his power as it exploded into him. He sucked and

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swallowed as if his life depended on it, as if it were the only thing that could nourish him. Harry lay breathing heavily on the couch, his eyes closed, his mouth a bit slack. His glasses were hanging off one ear and his hair was sweaty and sticking to his forehead. He looked a complete mess, but he didn't care one single bit. Draco licked and sucked until Harry was completely spent and clean. Then he gently released Harry's cock and balls, sliding one hand down to rest on a thigh and the other on Harry's side. He laid his head on Harry, his cheek pressed to the other boy's stomach, and closed his eyes. Harry swallowed a few times. His mouth was very dry. He buried his hands in Draco's hair again, stroking lightly. "How is it that you manage to reduce me to this state?" he croaked, shaking his head weakly. "Mmm," was the only sound Draco managed, a smile on his face. He was completely relaxed, still on his knees beside the couch. Harry sighed and stayed in his position for a few more minutes before tugging on Draco's hair a bit. "Get up here please," he said, smiling down at him. Draco took a deep breath and tried to move. At first, nothing seemed to happen. It was like the connection to his legs had stopped working. He closed his eyes for a moment and willed himself to move, bringing his hands down to the edge of the couch and pushing up on shaky legs. He crawled in beside Harry on the suddenly deeper sofa, then collapsed against him, head on his shoulder.

CHAPTER NINE

Mine, Not His


Harry frowned at the way Draco had moved up his body. He had just been sucked off, not Draco. Draco shouldn't have been so exhausted. "Draco ..." Harry began slowly. "What's the matter with you? Please don't try to tell me that it's nothing worth noticing or any of that." He spoke softly, not wanting to upset Draco. Draco sighed but didn't reply, nuzzling in against Harry and closing his eyes. He just wanted to sleep a little. "Draco," Harry tried again, shaking him a little. "Draco, don't go to sleep." He was afraid of what was happening to Draco; he'd never seen him look so frail and sick. Draco heard Harry, but the words weren't really making any sense. He clutched Harry closer to him, burying his face against the other boy's shoulder, and tried again to go to sleep. Harry shook Draco again, more forcefully this time. "Draco, get up," he said. "Get up right now." He began to panic a little when Draco didn't move. Harry shook him a few more times and then sat up suddenly, remembering what Draco had said earlier. He dove to the floor to fish his wand out of his pocket and then got back to his feet quickly. "Ennervate!" he said, pointing his wand at Draco. Draco found himself suddenly very awake. He was dizzy and he felt like hell, but he was definitely up. He looked up from his prone position on the couch to find Harry naked and pointing a wand at him. He scowled. "What the fuck?" "You wouldn't wake up!" Harry exclaimed, heart still beating madly with panic. He placed his wand on the table and then dropped on the couch next to Draco. He looked at him very seriously. "What's wrong with you?" he asked. Draco groaned, closing his eyes and huffing. "Besides the gnomes dancing on my skull and you yelling?" he asked. Harry frowned. "Sorry," he said, "but you know what I mean."

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He was determined to get an answer out of Draco, even if he had to sit there all night. "I am just tired," Draco said with a sigh, rubbing his temples with his fingers. "Yeah, right," said Harry, frowning. "Simply being tired doesn't make you literally pass out unless you haven't slept in days; come to think of it, maybe you haven't. Simply being tired doesn't make you look almost grey." He picked up one of Draco's arms and shook it in his face. "You aren't eating. I know you're not." Draco rolled his eyes and smirked. "I just ate you, if you hadn't noticed." Harry rolled his eyes too. "Draco, I'm serious," he said, a pained expression on his face. "If you don't stop, you could get really sick. Maybe you should go to Pomfrey or something. Get some PepperUp Potion ...." "I can and do make my own potions." Draco sighed and forced himself to sit up. That was maybe not the best idea though. The room spun and he nearly blacked out. "Yeah," he said, "I haven't slept a lot in the last couple days. Been a bit busy." "Been a bit busy with what exactly?" Harry asked, crossing his arms. "I've been with you the past few days. You haven't seemed busy." He was not going to let up. Draco laughed, a grin stretching his face. "Busy with you, you git." Harry narrowed his eyes. "Have I been preventing you from eating?" he asked stonily. Draco shrugged. "Haven't really been hungry." He paused, then added, "For food, at least." "Stop trying to make me think about sex," Harry said firmly. "It isn't going to work. And you say I'm a bad liar. At least I lie about stuff I might be able to get away with. Your body's screaming that you're lying." Draco shook his head, leaning against the sofa and stretching his arms out across the back. "What do you want from me, Harry?" "I want you to eat something," Harry answered. "I want you to sleep at night, and I want you to ... ugh, I don't know. Just do the first two things, please. I don't really want you to keel over dead in the middle of a fuck," he added, shaking his head.

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"What if that is exactly what I want?" Draco asked, his voice quiet and serious. Harry's eyes went wide. "Don't say that," he said, frowning deeply. "You ask for the truth, but then you don't want to hear it," Draco snapped. "The truth is that I die or someone you love does." Harry's breath hitched. "What?" he asked, almost inaudibly. Draco closed his eyes, unable to look Harry in the face. "I have been ordered to kill someone, someone you care about. And if I don't do it before a certain date, then I will die. It isn't that hard to understand." Harry's breathing became heavy. "If that's true," he said quietly, "then someone I love will die either way." Draco nodded, opening his eyes but not looking at Harry's face, staring off to his left as if examining his fingernails. "So, it is better this way. I die but the other person lives. I don't have to do it then." "Who is it?" Harry asked, voice terribly strained. "Please, Draco, who is it?" He didn't want to know, he didn't, but he had to. "I can't tell you," Draco said, pulling his arms down and resting his hands in his lap. Harry squeezed his eyes shut, not allowing the tears to fall. He didn't know what to do. He felt more lost than he had ever felt in his life. "I don't want you to die, Draco," he said, suddenly furious. "I'll fucking kill Voldemort." Draco reached his right hand out, holding Harry's chin in his hand, stroking his thumb over the other boy's lips. "Yes, you do that." He smiled. "I would appreciate that. But it won't stop this, even if you do." Harry couldn't hold his tears back anymore. "Please," he sobbed. "Please. I'll do anything if you'll just let me help you." He pulled Draco to him and held him tightly, sobbing into his shoulder. Draco allowed himself to be pulled into Harry's arms, his right arm around Harry's waist. He was quiet while Harry cried against him. "Not a damn thing you can do about this, Harry. Unless you want to help me die, that is." "I don't want to help you die!" Harry cried. "Why wouldn't killing Voldemort stop all this! If I kill him, then you won't have to do anything anymore!" Harry was frantic now. "I can kill him! I know

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how!" Draco shook his head and pulled back from Harry, looking him in the eyes. "Sit back and I will show you why." Harry frowned, but reluctantly let go of Draco, sniffing. "What is it?" he asked, dreading whatever it would be. Draco closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath. He then reached his right hand over and unbuttoned his left shirt cuff. He pulled the cuff up until most of his left forearm was exposed. In the place where Harry had suspected the Dark Mark was a green and black ring around Draco's arm. As Harry looked more closely, it seemed to move, coiling tighter. With a start, he realised it was a snake and that its mouth was attached to the inside of Draco's arm. "Draco, what the hell is that thing?" Harry shouted upon seeing the snake. He was overcome with a sudden urge to reach over and pull it off him. "Don't touch it," Draco hissed, pulling his arm back to make sure Harry didn't reach for it. Harry just continued to stare at it. "What is it?" he repeated, horrified. "It's a binding serpent," Draco said in a tone that implied everything to him. Harry was confused. He'd never heard of that before. "I don't know what that is," he said, wiping at his tear-streaked face. Draco shook his head. "It is Dark magic." He sighed. "The serpent is poisonous and, as you can see, it has its fangs embedded in my skin. At the target's death, it will release me. If the deadline arrives before that person's death, then it will kill me. I am told there is no cure and it is quite painful." Harry frowned deeply. "Th there's nothing you can do?" he asked quietly, staring into Draco's eyes. "There has to be something," he added with a desperate edge. Draco let his head fall back against the couch. "Do you think I haven't tried? That I havent researched this?" Harry didn't know what to do. He pulled his own hair. "Can't you just just pull it off or something?" he asked, already knowing that it was an absurd suggestion. Draco glared at Harry for a minute, snorting. He wasn't sure whether or not to even dignify that suggestion with an answer.

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Harry groaned and covered his face with his hands. "What do I do?" he asked anxiously. He wasn't sure whom he was talking to. "What do I do?" "Nothing," Draco said. "Nothing can be done. If you try to remove it, it kills me then. If you don't, it will kill me later." Harry's brain wouldn't allow him to accept that. "No," he said determinedly. "No, that can't be it." He felt his eyes start to fill with tears again, but he furiously kept them at bay. He got to his feet and began pacing. Draco sat quietly, watching Harry. He had gone through a similar period himself at first. Harry paced for a good full minute before stopping suddenly and flinging himself back down on the couch. He closed his eyes tightly. He didn't know what to do. He didn't even know where to begin. This wasn't his area of expertise .... Perhaps if Hermione knew ... but that was too much to think about. Draco reached up and pulled the shirtsleeve down again and fastened the cuff. He continued to sit quietly, watching Harry. "Draco, you can't expect me to just accept this," Harry said quietly after sitting silently for a few minutes. He sounded strained and tired. "Harry," Draco sighed, "do you think I want it to be this way? Especially now?" He reached a hand out and laid it on Harry's back, rubbing soothing circles. Harry leaned forward and buried his face in his hands again. "There has to be some other way," he whispered weakly through his fingers one last time. "The person I have to kill dies, or I die," Draco whispered. He ran his hand up Harry's back and petted his hair. "Draco, please tell me who it is," Harry said, looking up at him. "Please. What if we can work something out?" Harry was running through important people that mattered to him .... The Weasleys, Hermione, Lupin, Dumbledore, Hagrid . It could've been so many people .... Who was someone Voldemort would tell Draco Malfoy to kill ...? "It doesn't matter, Harry," Draco said. "I am not going to do it. So that means that I will be dead when I turn seventeen." "Draco, it does matter!" Harry shouted, turning to face him.

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"What if they can help you!" He was frantic again; he couldn't bear the thought of losing someone else to Voldemort. Could not stand it. Draco watched Harry rant, feeling completely disconnected from it. He felt cold and quiet. "At least I won't have to take the Dark Mark this way," he said quietly. "I'd rather you take the fucking Dark Mark than die, Draco! Why don't you care! Why won't you do something? Let me do something!" He'd grabbed Draco's shoulders now. Draco winced and closed his eyes. When he opened them, they were a hard, cold grey. "You do not know what you are saying. You want me to become a murderer? Because that's what it means, Harry. Taking the Dark Mark would mean killing anyone and everyone He told me to kill. That would be better than dying?" Harry gave him a pained look. "No," he groaned. He pulled Draco to him and hugged him tightly. "Why does this have to happen now?" he whispered. Draco laid his head on Harry's chest, sighing happily at the feel of him, of being held by him. "Well, it could be worse," he whispered. "What if I hadn't kissed you?" Harry closed his eyes and clutched Draco tighter. "That would be the worst thing in the entire world," he said, tears falling now. He felt like a hole was forming next to the one Sirius had caused, and Draco wasn't even gone yet. "Yes," Draco whispered, holding Harry against him and petting him. He stroked his hair and rubbed circles on his back, trying to calm him down. Harry wasn't sure what to do next. What could he do but sit there in Draco's arms, feeling helpless? He hated feeling helpless, hated it. He felt like he was going to throw up again. He sat up suddenly, tears still falling from his now furious eyes. "I'll fucking kill him. I swear I'll fucking kill him, Draco." Draco nodded, smiling sadly. "After I die, you can kill Him," he agreed. "Right now, I want to be with you." More tears fell from Harry's eyes at Draco's words, but he nodded, pulling Draco to him and kissing him hard on the mouth, probably hard enough to hurt, but it didn't matter. Draco surrendered to the crushing kiss, feeling like he needed this more than anything. His fingers tangled in Harry's hair and his

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hand on Harry's back kneaded his skin. "You're mine," Harry sobbed into Draco's mouth. "Not his, mine." He pushed Draco down on his back, devouring his mouth as he went. "Yes, yours," Draco gasped, allowing himself to be pushed back. Oh, Gods, his body thrummed with the power of Harry's desire. "Every ... (kiss) ... part of ... (suck) ... you ... (lick) ... is mine," Harry said as he worked his way down to Draco's neck, biting and nibbling. Arching into Harry's touch, Draco moaned. "Yes, yours, Harry." He writhed under Harry. Harry sucked at a few places on Draco's neck until he was sure there were marks, and then he moved down to his collarbone and left a trail of love bites there as well. Harry wasn't sure what had come over him. He gripped the tops of Draco's arms very tightly as he kissed and bit at his skin. When Harry gripped his arms, Draco laid his hands down beside him, gripping the sofa below. "Yes, yes," he chanted, his head thrown back. Harry began fumbling with the buttons on Draco's shirt with shaky fingers. The third time his fingers slipped he let out a growl of frustration and simply ripped the shirt apart, buttons flying in all directions. Gasping, Draco felt himself harden at Harry's strength. It was fucking amazing. Harry attacked Draco's skin and moaned, his hands moving down to start working on getting his trousers off. "I'm going to fuck you," he growled, looking up for a second to make eye contact with Draco. Draco was breathing hard, and he met Harry's eyes. He nodded. "I'm yours." "You have no idea how much," Harry said harshly, biting down on Draco's nipple. Draco cried out as Harry bit him, but didn't let go of the couch or pull away. Gods, he needed this. Harry moved off Draco and downward to pull Draco's trousers and underwear off in one quick move. "Turn around," he said, beginning to fist his own rapidly hardening cock.

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Draco swallowed hard, his body trembling at the look on Harry's face and the sound of his voice. He sat up and got to his knees, turned around, and leaned over the arm of the couch, letting his forehead rest there. Harry swallowed hard and bent forward to actually bite Draco on the arse. He felt like a man possessed. He kissed and sucked a wet trail across Draco's skin, all across his lower back, nibbling the skin of Draco's arse cheeks and sucking there. Draco moaned and gasped under the assault of Harry's mouth. He held on tight to the upholstery and spread his legs as far as he could on the couch. "I own you," Harry growled, digging his fingers into Draco's hips for emphasis. He moved his hands to spread Draco apart before him and licked a straight line up the crease, straight across Draco's entrance. "Yesss!" Draco cried out, his neck arching and his arse rising toward Harry. "Please, yes!" he gasped. Harry grinned. He spread the blond further apart and swirled his tongue around the hole, loving the taste that was purely Draco. He made stabbing motions at it with his tongue, loving how it quivered from his assault. Trembling, Draco was chanting without realising it, "Yes, Harry, yours!" He pressed his forehead to the upholstery again and hung on tight. Harry's tongue was driving him insane, and his cock was twitching with it. Harry continued to tongue fuck Draco harshly, licking and sucking and kissing. He was so hard, his cock actually hurt from the strain. "I bet no one has ever done this to you, have they, Draco?" Harry asked, a smirk on his lips and in his voice. "No one else will ever do this." He jerked Draco back, digging his fingers into his legs. "No, no one," Draco gasped. "Only you." Harry Summoned the lube and wrenched the lid off so that the jar actually broke, cutting his finger open. He didn't even flinch. He didn't think anything could've stopped him right then. "I'm going to make you scream my name, Draco," he growled. "I'm going to fucking pound you." He dipped his fingers into the oil, accidentally dripping blood and lube down his chest as he slicked his own cock. "Yes, please," Draco sobbed. Every word made him want it

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more. He shivered at the intensity of Harry's voice and the sizzle that was Harry's magic pushed by his feelings. Harry dipped his fingers into the jar again and shoved two into Draco, not even preparing him with a single finger first. He groaned as he felt that tightness, and it made him even more impatient. "Fucking hell, you're so fucking tight," he whined, moving his fingers around. Draco winced but then began breathing deeply, focussing on relaxing his body, especially his arse. Harry taking control was the hottest thing he could imagine. Draco wanted this. Wanted to feel he could lean on Harry, to know that he was stronger. Harry hooked his fingers, searching for that spot inside Draco that he knew had to be there. It had felt so good when done to him. He draped himself over Draco's back so he could whisper in his ear. "You love this, don't you?" he hissed, still searching for that spot. "You belong under me." "Oh, yes," Draco sobbed, pushing back against those fingers and shivering at the feel of Harry's body. "Yours, not His. Yours." "That's. Fucking. Right," Harry said, his cock throbbing. He pulled himself away from Draco and took his fingers out of him to get more lube. Draco was probably going to need a lot of it. He admired the sight of Draco spread so far before him, waiting for him, his arsehole so wet and slippery-looking and tinged pink from the blood of Harry's cut finger. He pushed three fingers in this time, without warning, groaning again at Draco's tightness. "Yours," Draco whispered. "All yours." He was totally unprepared for how good not only what Harry was doing was, but how good the idea felt inside. How right it was. Harry flexed his fingers, biting his lip. He tried to search around for that spot again and grinned wickedly when he felt Draco jolt beneath him. "Tell me how much you want me to fuck you, Draco," he said. "Tell me how much you're dying for my cock." He brushed against that spot inside Draco again. Draco really was sobbing now, tears running down his face. "Please, please, Harry. Please fuck me. Fuck me hard. Claim me. Fill me." "My pleasure," Harry said, quickly removing his fingers and replacing them with his cock at Draco's entrance. He pushed halfway

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in immediately, feeling Draco convulse around him. "Oh, fuck, yessss," he hissed, his eyes sliding shut. Draco's scream was incoherent, and he was sobbing loudly now. Harry inside him was so right, so amazingly perfect. This was worth it all. It really was. Harry pushed all the way in swiftly, buried balls-deep. He was still for a second before pulling almost all the way out again. "I could fuck your tight little arse all day long, Draco," he said, leaning over Draco again. "The way you fucking swallow me up like you need it to live." Harry didn't know how he even had the ability to speak at all. All he knew was that he couldn't seem to stop talking. "Mmmm," he sighed, "I wonder what we look like." His eyes widened a bit as a mirror appeared out of nowhere, directly in front of Draco. Harry nearly came at the sight of Draco's face. "Oh, Gods," Draco gasped, looking up into Harry's eyes and nearly coming right then from the sight of him. "Yes, I need you," he gasped. Harry straightened again, snapping his hips so fast he wondered if he was going to break Draco in half. He tore his eyes away from the mirror to watch his cock disappearing in and out of Draco's hole. It was so fucking hot the way it gripped him on the way out, like Draco didn't want to let him go. Draco wanted Harry inside him as far and as deep as he could have him. He wanted to feel him all the way to his throat. He wanted to feel Harry in every part of him. Harry continued thrusting into Draco as hard and as fast as he could. He felt so alive. "Fuck, Draco! Fuck!" he yelled, moving impossibly faster. The sound of skin slapping against skin was ringing in Harry's ears now. He leant forward a bit and grasped Draco's leaking cock, moving his hand in time with his thrusts, or maybe even a bit slower. "Harry," Draco gasped, pressed between Harry and the arm of the couch. He could barely move, but he was doing his best to meet every thrust. "I am yours," he moaned. "Really ... (gasp) ... and truly ... yours!" Harry was hitting that spot, stroking inside and out and he felt the even stronger press of Harry's magic. The combination was more than what he needed and he was coming hard.

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"Ahh, Draco!" Harry cried as he felt Draco's come spill out onto his hand. Draco's arse convulsed around him more strongly than ever and Harry came too, shouting Draco's name over and over before collapsing on top of him, literally drooling a bit. Draco fell forward under Harry's weight. He was pinned and couldn't have moved. It was perfect. Harry was perfect, and he wanted, at that moment, to be able to live; to live to enjoy this. He started to cry again. Harry began crying too, and he hugged Draco around the middle. "I love you!" he sobbed. "I love you, I love you, I love you!" Draco felt Harry crying again and allowed his feelings to soothe him, to really take in what Harry was saying, to believe it. Harry cried for a few minutes, but his breathing eventually returned to normal. He closed his eyes, falling asleep, and then jerking awake, and then falling asleep again. Draco was still awake, and he felt Harry relax against him. He lay under him, thinking. He wondered if the earlier spell was responsible for him being awake still. He closed his eyes and imagined that they were lying in a bed, and he was propped up on pillows instead of the side of the couch. He sighed when he felt the surface under them shift. He was still pressed under Harry now, but he was warm and comfortable with the bed below and a blanket over them. Harry jerked awake again when the room provided them with the bed "Wha'?" he mumbled, accidentally slipping over sideways so that he left Draco with a wet-sounding pop. Draco hissed, a bit of pain and the loss of Harry inside him startling. He rolled to the side and snuggled up to Harry. "Are you awake?" he whispered. "Mmm," Harry let out slowly, his eyes still closed. "You are asleep." Draco smirked. "Harry Potter has fucked himself unconscious." Harry gave a crooked, sleepy grin. "Sure," he slurred, his voice very low. Draco waited until Harry's breathing evened out and it was clear that the other boy was asleep. Finally, he whispered, "Harry," again and didn't get an answer. Smiling, he kept whispering. "Harry, I love you." Then he closed his eyes and went to sleep as well.

CHAPTER TEN

Monday Morning
May 5 Harry was so warm and comfortable that he didn't want to move at all. He remembered the previous night and smiled, snuggling closer to the body curled up with him. "Draco?" he asked thickly with a yawn. Draco felt warm and tired. He smiled at the sound of Harry's voice, but didn't open his eyes. Instead, he burrowed against Harry's body. Harry sighed happily, but then frowned as he remembered what had happened before the amazing sex. "Draco, I'm sorry," he whispered, holding him even closer. Draco opened sleepy grey eyes to look up at Harry. "I'm not," he said, blushing. He whispered, "I am yours." Harry gave a small smile and a tiny nod, settling again. And then his eyes went wide. "Draco, today's Monday," he said, and then he sat up quickly. "What time is it?" Draco shrugged, unhappy about the sudden reminder of the rest of the world. He wanted to hide in the room for as long as he could. He knew that wasn't really practical but didn't actually care about it at the moment. Harry leapt out of bed and began throwing his clothes on frantically. He groaned when an alarm clock appeared out of nowhere. "Draco, it's already 9:00! We've missed our first class!" he said, picking up Draco's trousers and throwing them so that they landed on Draco's head. Draco moaned, rolling over and burying his head under a pillow. He mumbled a response from there but, of course, it was unintelligible. "Draco, we have to get up! It won't take long for people to figure out we're both missing. Hermione and Ron will send McGonagall up here or something!" He finished dressing, regretting that he was in

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Muggle clothes. "Draco!" he tried again when he looked up and saw that Draco had buried his head under a pillow. The image of McGonagall finding him nearly naked was enough to make Draco roll over and start trying to figure which end of his trousers was which. "Where's my wand?" he asked groggily. Harry reached down and picked up Draco's robes and tossed them to him. "Most likely in the pocket," he said. He felt disgusting and dirty, probably because he was. Harry sat down in a chair to wait for Draco. He supposed he could've just left, but he didn't want to. Not yet. Draco pulled his wand and performed Cleaning Spells for both of them. He pulled on his trousers and then went to do up his shirt. He grinned and looked at Harry when he realised his shirt no longer buttoned. Harry blushed a bit. "Erm ... sorry," he said sheepishly. "I was a bit ... eager." Draco grinned. "I like eager." He looked around the room and did a Summoning Charm to find the missing buttons, then a Reparo on the shirt. It didn't look great, and one of the buttons was still missing, but at least it closed. He found his tie and finished putting the rest of his clothes on. "Can you go to class like that?" He frowned, realising Harry was not in his school uniform. "Probably not," Harry said, looking at his jeans and his trainerclad feet. "I don't have any of my stuff with me anyway. I'll change when I go up to get it. Merlin, we're going to be so late," he groaned. "You go on and get changed," Draco said, walking over to Harry. "I'll go ahead to class. It probably would be better if we didn't arrive together anyway." Draco stood for a moment, almost afraid to move, afraid that if he left it would all dissolve. Harry nodded sadly and got to his feet. "All right," he said with a sigh. He pulled Draco to him quickly and gave him a swift kiss on the lips before walking over to grab his Cloak. "I'll see you later, yeah?" Draco nodded, not trusting himself to speak. He watched Harry leave and then sat down for a minute on the chair Harry had left. He tried to remember who he was supposed to be when he left this room. So much had happened in such a short time. He didn't know if he could find the face he was supposed to wear to class. Harry ran all the way up to Gryffindor Tower. He gathered all his

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things very quickly and dressed even faster. By the time he had reached Slughorn's classroom door, he looked a complete mess. His hair was all over the place, well, more than usual anyway, his tie was hanging loosely around his neck, his shirt was buttoned the wrong way, and his robes were all rumpled, but at least he was there. Draco made it to class before Harry, but not by long. He had used charms to make himself look presentable, but he didn't miss the suspicious glares he got from the other Slytherins, especially Crabbe and Goyle. He had definitely been missed. He gave them his usual, or as close to usual he could manage, withering look and took his place. And it was all he could do to keep from laughing aloud when Harry came stumbling in. It wasn't until then that he remembered he had Harry's book. Harry burst into the room, panting. "Sorry I'm late, Professor," he said, scratching the back of his neck. He made quick eye-contact with Ron and Hermione, who both looked worried and a bit angry. He then gave Draco a very quick look. Well, I'll have to take twenty points from Gryffindor, Harry," Slughorn said from the front of the class. "It must be come-to-classlate day! Mr Malfoy was late as well!" he added good-naturedly. Harry couldn't help the small blush that crept across his face. He nodded and moved to take his seat next to Ron. "Harry, where were you --" he began, but Harry shook his head, cutting him off. Draco schooled his features to show only mild disdain at being grouped with "Potter". Meanwhile, he was trying to figure out what to do about the fact that Harry didn't even have a Potions book today. Slughorn continued talking about the potion the class was working on. Harry picked his bag up from the floor and pulled out parchment and a quill. He reached in for his Potions book and frowned when he didn't seem to have it. He searched his pockets for a moment before his eyes shot to Draco. He had Harry's book. Draco was watching Harry with increasing agitation when he started looking in his book bag. He widened his eyes and gave a kind of helpless open gesture with his hands to indicate he understood. Harry groaned quietly. What was he going to do now? He couldn't walk over to Draco Malfoy and get his book back! What

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would everyone think? "Ron, can I share your book today?" he whispered. Ron gave him a funny look. "Where's yours?" he asked, frowning. I forgot it," Harry lied, giving a nonchalant shrug. Ron shook his head and didn't look completely convinced, but he placed his book between him and Harry. Harry gave him a muttered, "Thanks." Draco hesitated and then pulled the book out, turning it to the assignment. Since he had not gone back to the dorms to change, it was the only copy of the book he had with him. Harry struggled through the assignment, missing his book dearly. He turned out a potion that was barely the colour it was supposed to be, thicker than it should've been, and that let off a strange smell. He winced when Slughorn began making his rounds about the class to see how everyone had done. Draco followed the notes in the book and was surprised to find his potion came out better than expected. He was normally good at this anyway, but the suggestions were interesting. He was so caught up in looking at other notes in the book that he almost missed it when Slughorn stepped in front of him. He closed the book a little too quickly but didn't show it in his face. Slughorn laughed and praised the potion, and Draco felt increasingly uncomfortable. Normally, doing so well would've had him smirking at Potter, but he was afraid to even look in Harry's direction at this point. Harry narrowed his eyes at Draco. The git had used his book. Harry shook his head at him. "Erm, what's this, Harry?" Slughorn asked when he was in front of him. "A a rather bad potion, sir," Harry said, frowning. "Sorry. I'm not feeling very well today." Slughorn frowned. "Well, perhaps next time then," he said. Harry nodded and looked over at Draco again. Ron and Hermione were staring at Harry. Ron was looking rather confused, Hermione looking rather suspicious. Draco could feel his face flush when Harry spoke. He ducked his head to cover his embarrassment, glad that class was almost over. He was feeling dizzy again and confused. Class finished after a few more minutes, and Harry packed up

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slowly and told Ron and Hermione to go on ahead. Draco was holding onto the top of the desk, pretending to be studying notes he had taken. He heard the other students filing out but didn't look up. In fact, he was afraid to move. The room was spinning again, and he was seeing dark spots in his vision. When everyone had left except Slughorn, Harry figured it would be safe to walk over to Draco. "Have fun?" he asked quietly with no real malice in his voice. Draco startled at the sound of Harry's voice but didn't rise. He was afraid to shake his head, but he managed to whisper, "No." He spared a glance and noticed Slughorn leaving too. Harry raised an eyebrow at Draco's reaction and moved to stand in front of his desk. "You all right?" he asked, chancing running a finger across Draco's hand. "Just," Draco began, trying to think of what to say, "just tired, I think." He struggled to breathe slow and deep, trying to keep from passing out. Harry frowned. "Draco, are you feeling like you're going to pass out again?" He knew better than to buy Draco's I need sleep farce anymore. "It will pass," Draco said quietly. "It always does. Someone will see you if you stay. Your friends ." Harry glanced at the door. "What if it doesn't, though?" he said, looking back at Draco. He watched him for a few more seconds. "Here, c'mon. I'll help you to the hospital wing." He made to move behind Draco and help him to his feet. Draco stood up at Harry's urging and the room spun crazily, going black in swirls. He slumped unconscious into Harry's arms. Harry gasped and gripped Draco hard before he fell to the floor. "Oh, shit," he said, looking around madly as if someone would come out of the shadows to help him. No one came, however, and Harry, panting, dragged Draco to the door and struggled to get it open. Draco was heavy, even for someone who hadn't been eating. "Draco, please wake up," he said frantically. "Please, please wake up." He managed to finally get Draco through the door and was greeted with a shriek of, "Harry! What on earth are you doing!" Ron and Hermione were still standing outside the class, waiting for him. "He just passed out!" Harry yelped. "Help me!" Ron rushed

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forward and grasped Draco's arm to pull it around his shoulders. He and Harry began walking forward, carrying Draco along with them. "Wait!" Hermione cried after they had gotten halfway down the corridor. "Did you try to Ennervate him?" she asked frantically. Harry closed his eyes and shook his head. "No, I didn't think of that," he said. Merlin, he was an idiot. "Ennervate!" Hermione said, pulling out her wand and pointing it at Draco. Draco woke with a start, suddenly realising he was being held between two people. Looking quickly to each side, he saw first that familiar mop of black hair and then an equally familiar, but frightening, red head. He stiffened in their grasp, trying to pull himself up. Harry swallowed heavily and let go of Draco quickly. He turned red, knowing that Draco would be angry at him for not thinking to Ennervate him himself. "What the hell is going on?" Ron asked, backing away from Draco as well, looking quickly from him to Harry. Draco nearly stumbled as both boys suddenly released him. He could remember being in class and not much else after that. He frowned, trying to figure it out. "What happened?" "Erm, you passed out," Harry said quietly. "I panicked. I didn't know what to do ." "What the hell is going on!" Ron repeated, louder. "Yes, Harry," said Hermione. "What is going on?" Harry looked from Draco to Ron to Hermione. "I just I he passed out and I had to do something! I couldn't just leave him there!" "I'm fine now, Potter," Draco drawled, trying to play the part as always. But despite the spell, he was still feeling tired and very lightheaded. "I've got class," he said, and turned to leave. Harry didn't want to let Draco leave, but he couldn't do anything about it with Ron and Hermione standing there. Hermione did it for him. "Wait, Malfoy!" she said. "You just passed out in class. Shouldn't you go to the hospital wing or something?" Harry looked at Draco pointedly. "Since when do you care?" Draco sneered, not having to work at that one. He was still uncomfortable with Harry's friends. He met

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Harry's eyes briefly but shook his head, clearly refusing. Harry sighed angrily. He knew Draco was never going to allow him to do this, so he was just going to have to do it. "Malfoy's not fine," he said firmly. "He's in trouble. He needs help." Harry knew Draco was probably going to hate him, but it didn't matter right then. He could deal with Draco hating him again if it meant that he would be okay. Draco scowled and did his best to stalk off. Unfortunately, he didn't make it far. His balance was off, and he found himself crashing into a wall and falling to his knees. "Bloody hell," was all he could think to say. Hermione gasped, Ron let out a Bloody hell to match Draco's, and Harry rushed forward. "Draco, stop!" he yelled, not even bothering to use his surname. "What's the matter with you?" Hermione asked Draco almost fearfully. Draco stayed on his knees, breathing deep. He was pretty sure that if he had eaten anything that day, he would have thrown up. As it was, the queasy spin was enough to make him paler than any ghost in the castle. "Tired," he said in a clipped voice, not looking up. Harry rolled his eyes and got to his knees beside Draco. "No, he's not," he said to Hermione. "He hasn't eaten in days." "Why?" Hermione asked, horrified. "He just won't!" Harry let out furiously. "You barmy bugger," Ron said, crouching down next to Harry to peer at Draco. "Why don't you eat something?" "None of your fucking business, Weasel," Draco tried to snap at him, but it came out almost as a gasp. He leaned forward, bringing both hands to rest on the cool stone. Now on his hands and knees, he was trying to think of something to do about this, but everything seemed so foggy. "I'm taking you to the hospital wing," Harry said firmly, getting to his feet. "Ron, grab his arm again." Ron shrugged and nodded, getting to his feet as well. If Draco had had any strength left, he would have fought them. As it was, he remained silent. His arm around Harry's shoulder clutched at him, needing that contact more than he could admit.

CHAPTER ELEVEN

Blood, Sweat, Tears and What?


Harry and Ron hoisted Draco up and began walking with him again, Hermione following quickly behind. They must have looked very odd three Gryffindors and a Slytherin. They reached the hospital wing a bit more slowly than they normally would have, as Draco obviously didn't want to go. Harry could feel Draco's grip on him, and he tightened his own, hoping that it was comforting. Madam Pomfrey gasped upon seeing them and hurriedly bustled forward to look at Draco's face. "Put him down on that bed!" she said to Harry and Ron, not asking any other questions. Draco felt them laying him on the bed, but at that point, nothing was very clear. The only thing that seemed clear to him at all was that he couldn't let go of Harry. His hand had slid down Harry's arm as they placed him but he gripped the other's boy's wrist. He felt like he was on a rough sea, the world grey and dark, tossing him about, and that grasp was the only thing keeping him from drowning. Harry let Draco grasp his arm, knowing that Ron and Hermione probably thought it was very strange, but that wasn't his concern right then. He would have to make up some story later. He would probably have to make up some story as to why he'd known that Draco hadn't been eating, too. Madam Pomfrey gave a quick glance at Draco's hand clutching Harry's wrist, her eyes widening. But then she focused on Draco, fussing about. "What happened?" she asked Harry. Harry shot a quick glance at Ron and Hermione, who were both looking at him expectantly. "Erm, he was still sitting in class after it was over, and I wanted to ask him something, so I stayed after too and he just passed out. I pulled him out into the corridor and Hermione Ennervated him, but he still didn't feel well, so we brought him up here." He cleared his throat. "I also know that he hasn't been

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eating." Draco's state of consciousness at this point was dim at best. He was aware of Harry's skin under his hand and that there were sounds in the room, but he didn't even attempt to make them out. His eyes were closed and his breathing shallow and laboured. Madam Pomfrey frowned and looked at the three Gryffindors. "You two: go on to class," she told Hermione and Ron. Ron opened his mouth to protest, but Hermione silenced him with a look and a hand on his arm. "All right, we'll go," she told Madam Pomfrey. "Harry," she said, looking at him as if she knew there was something he wasn't letting on Harry nodded, knowing that it would be all she would need for the moment. Hermione nodded in return, pulled Ron to his feet, and led him out of the room. Madam Pomfrey did some basic diagnostic charms to determine what kind of damage she was dealing with. She pulled several potions from a tray and narrowed her eyes at Harry. "Tell me the rest now," she said to him. Harry gulped, not really sure if he should tell Pomfrey the whole thing. He sighed knowing that there was no way he was going to be able to get out of it, especially if the nurse pulled up Draco's shirt sleeve. "He has to do something for he's been going through some things, and I think that's why he hasn't been eating. He's also been sort of ... exerting ... himself the last few days," Harry tried to explain. Madam Pomfrey frowned and began to administer two potions. But when she tried to get Draco to take one of them, he closed his mouth tightly, turning his head away. Harry looked at Pomfrey and frowned. He bent low, very close to Draco's face. "Please take the potion, love," he pleaded very quietly so that Pomfrey wouldn't hear. "Please, just take the potion." Draco's face sought Harry's like a plant bends to the sun. He pressed his cheek against the other boy's. Harry let his eyes fall closed and brought the arm that Draco wasn't gripping up so that he could cup the side of Draco's face. "Draco, please," he begged again. "Please, please, please take the potion. Do it for me, please?"

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"Yours," Draco whispered against his cheek. Harry squeezed his eyes more tightly shut. "Yes," he whispered. "Yes, you're mine. Always." He felt like screaming. "Draco, please take the potion," he said a little louder. "From you," Draco said, still not opening his eyes. Harry quickly pulled himself away from Draco for just a moment. "He wants me to give it to him," he told Madam Pomfrey. Wordlessly, she handed Harry the first potion and stood quietly considering the scene before her. Harry took the vial and bent quickly over Draco again. "Here, Draco," he said, tipping it forward and taking care not to spill any. Draco nearly choked on the vile liquid, but did his best to swallow. He grimaced and swallowed convulsively a few times. Harry sighed with relief, stroking Draco's hair. "Thank you," he said, handing the bottle back to Madam Pomfrey. He sat back up and looked at her. She handed Harry the second vial, taking the empty one from him. He bent once again. "Here comes another one," he told Draco in warning before tipping the contents of this one down his throat as well. Once finished, he sat up again. "How many are there?" he asked, looking at Draco worriedly. Draco groaned, coughing up a little of the potion this time. His grip on Harry would have been painful if he'd had any strength left. Madam Pomfrey frowned and handed Harry a cloth. "I don't think he can handle any of the others at this point," she said. Harry nodded, taking the cloth from Pomfrey and wiping Draco's face. "Is he okay? What do the potions do? Will he be able to get up soon?" he asked, looking at Madam Pomfrey like she held all the answers in the universe. She sighed and looked up. Professor Snape came into the room like a storm, robes billowing behind him. He sneered as his eyes fell on Harry, widening in shock at the sight of Draco. Draco looked ghastly, features gaunt and skin bone white. He sucked in his breath, turning to Madam Pomfrey. "What is the meaning of this?" he asked, gesturing to both boys, managing to include both Draco's state and Harry's presence in the question.

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Harry's eyes narrowed at the sight of Snape. Perfect, just what I need right now, he thought. Severus, this boy is very sick," Madam Pomfrey told the fuming Professor. "The last thing he needs is a whole mess of fuss from you." Harry wondered how she managed to say it without sounding impolite. "The boy looks a lot worse than sick," Snape snapped, bending down to examine Draco. He was clearly shocked by what he saw. His eyes fell on Draco's hand clutching Harry, and then he looked up at the boy himself. "Mr Potter, exactly what are you doing here?" he asked. Harry scowled. He didn't want to tell Snape a damn thing, but he knew he was going to have to. "I was there when he passed out, sir," he said angrily. "And you are still here because?" Snape sneered. Madam Pomfrey stepped forward. "He is assisting me," she answered. Harry couldn't help but feel a tiny bit smug at her words, but it was not the time for that. He had stopped stroking Draco's hair when Snape had entered, and he was afraid to start again. He simply sat there, waiting for Madam Pomfrey's next instruction. Professor Snape turned his attention on the woman. "What has happened to Draco?" She frowned but seemed to shift gears with him. "He has collapsed from exhaustion and starvation. As far as I can tell, he hasn't eaten in at least a week, possibly more, and has been using spells and potions to keep himself going and to cover the evidence." Harry frowned. He wanted to hit himself for not noticing what Draco had been doing sooner. He still wasn't sure what else to do, but he wasn't about to leave Draco's side. Snape glared at Pomfrey. "And what are you doing about this?" he demanded. Pomfrey frowned. "I have given him a couple Revitalising Potions. But the normal means of handling this have been made unusable by his overuse of a variety of potions and spells to cover the effects. The progression is already advanced. Even with the spells he used, I am surprised he was able to walk from the dorms, let alone attend a class."

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Draco, you're such a stubborn fool, Harry thought to himself. "How long will it take for him to recover?" he asked Pomfrey, forehead lined with worry. Both adults turned toward Harry as if they had forgotten he was there. They exchanged glances with each other and then Snape scowled and looked away. Madam Pomfrey sighed. "I know you are trying to take care of ... your friend. But his condition may be beyond what we can do anything about. Especially here at Hogwarts." Harry's eyes widened. "What!" he asked incredulously. He hadn't been expecting that at all. "What is that supposed to mean? Where does he have to go then?" A snort came from Snape's direction, but he continued to look the other way. Madam Pomfrey continued, "Well, normally we would contact his parents and probably encourage them to have him taken to St Mungo's, but that might not be possible anymore." Harry raised his eyebrows. "What? Why?" he asked fearfully. "Seriously, Mr Potter," Professor Snape sneered. "Have you forgotten his father's current whereabouts? He is in Azkaban, if you need a reminder." Harry scowled heavily at Snape. "No, I haven't forgotten, sir." He turned back to Pomfrey. "What about his mother?" "Missing," Snape said in one terse word. Harry frowned. He hadn't known that. "Well, what are you going to do with him?" He looked back at Draco. Madam Pomfrey looked at Snape again. He heaved an even greater sigh. "Since I am his godfather, it is up to me to decide what to do with him." Harry's eyes widened and he looked up at Snape in disbelief. "You're his godfather?" he asked incredulously. Madam Pomfrey put a hand up as if to warn Harry against such outbursts, but Harry's outburst seemed to make Snape smile. "Yes, Mr Potter, I am," he said, turning to face Harry. "So would you mind telling me why you are here now, and what part in this you have played?" Harry glared at Snape. "I already told you. I was there when he passed out," he said through clenched teeth. Snape would be Draco's godfather, it was just Harry's luck. Snape narrowed his eyes, looking pointedly at Draco's hand on

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Harry. He shook his head. "Unless you want me to send you from this room this instant, you will tell me the truth. Potter, you may not care what happens to Draco, but I do." Harry looked away from Snape; he could feel him trying to probe his mind. What was he supposed to do? He didn't know. What would happen if he told Snape the truth? Would Draco want him to tell the truth? Harry wished Draco was awake so he could say something about all this. His heart began beating frantically. "Leave," Snape said in a quiet angry voice. "I need to focus on Draco, not you." Harry winced, but it wasn't as if he hadn't been expecting that. He looked down at Draco's hand still attached to his wrist and sighed heavily. "I'm not leaving him," he said. Snape stood on the opposite side of the bed from Harry, silent and glaring for another minute. He seemed to make some kind of decision, because then he sat down in a chair. "Mr Potter," he began quietly, "if we are to keep him alive, then I need to know more about the reason for his condition. I need you to tell me everything you can about what has been happening to him." Professor Snape sounded old and tired. Harry hesitated, but then looked down at Draco again. What could he do? "He hasn't been eating at all," he began quietly, "and he has been sleeping, although I'm not sure how well." He cleared his throat a bit. "I know a lot about the reason he hasn't been eating or sleeping much," he said pointedly, hoping that Snape would get what he meant. Snape looked up sharply and then gestured at Madam Pomfrey, who frowned heavily, but turned and walked out of the room. "I know he has been ... struggling," Snape said, "but I didn't know he would go to such extremes." Harry nodded, amazed that he was actually having a conversation with Snape. "Does Professor Dumbledore know?" he asked seriously. Snape frowned, but didn't answer the question. "How do you know so much about Draco, Mr Potter? What changed?" Harry looked away. "I I don't know. He just he just told me. I don't think he had anyone to talk to about it." Harry knew how lame that sounded. As if Draco Malfoy would come to Harry Potter to tell him about a mission from Lord Voldemort for no apparent reason.

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Snape grimaced, his slender fingers pinching the bridge of his nose. He took a deep breath. "Mr Potter, this is getting us nowhere. We are both aware of the likelihood of Draco Malfoy confiding his troubles in you. It is very much in the low range, or at least that is what the entire school would think. So, I ask you again what changed?" Snape reached over and picked up Draco's other hand, turning it over in his own and staring at it. He seemed shocked with its temperature. Harry sighed in defeat. "Fine, we're ... together," he said, finding that he, strangely, wasn't embarrassed about it at all. Snape's eyebrows raised. "Together?" "Yes," Harry said. "Together as in we ... kiss each other and that ... stuff." Harry felt like a first-year, but it was odd to be discussing this with his teacher, especially his least favourite teacher, whom he loathed. The professor closed his eyes and looked for a moment like he was in pain. He shook his head. "How long?" he asked quietly. "Erm ... this would be the fourth day ..." Harry mumbled, clearing his throat oddly. "Four days?" Snape shook his head again. "Children," he said with a sigh, as if talking to someone else. "Their whole world turned inside out in four days." He put his face into hands, groaning. "I'm not a child," Harry said sharply. He crossed one arm over his stomach, as Draco was still holding on to his other one. "You still haven't said what you're going to do with him." "I still haven't learnt anything that will help him," Snape answered. He glanced toward the direction Pomfrey had gone. "Madam Pomfrey suggested that something had kept him alive for longer than would be expected. Snape paused and looked at Harry as if studying him. "And the only thing that I know changed in that time was you." Harry frowned. "But I haven't done anything. He wouldn't let me ..." he said, confused. "Do you think I should try and do something?" Snape sighed and closed his eyes again. "Where did this 'kissing and stuff' take place?" "The Room of Requirement," Harry said slowly, wondering why on earth Snape wanted to know that. Snape looked like he would rather lick cauldrons after Potions

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class than continue on this train of thought. He looked at Draco's hand again, which he seemed surprised to find he was still holding. "And just how much time have you two spent in there in the last four days?" Harry blushed a little. "Er ... quite a bit of time," he said, looking anywhere but at Snape. "Please tell me you haven't exchanged rings or any other types of binding promises?" he groaned. Harry shook his head. "No, nothing like that," he said quickly. "Erm, sir, if you dont mind me asking ... what does all this have to do with anything?" Snape looked at the boy lying still and quiet in the bed. "What have you done, Draco?" Harry frowned, feeling helpless again. Why was Snape asking him all these questions anyway? How was Harry supposed to know what the hell was going on? Why was he asking about rings and binding promises? ... Binding ... Harry's face shot up suddenly. "Sir?" he said. "I think maybe we did make a binding promise, but I'm not sure ." Snape's groan sounded like a man in serious pain. He glared at Harry. "Tell me exactly what you promised, what he promised, and under what conditions." Harry flushed crimson. "I erm well, we were ... and I told him that he ... was mine ... and he agreed that he was mine ." He gulped and chanced a glance at Snape. Snape actually paled and gritted his teeth. "Was there ..." he took a breath, "an exchange of bodily fluids involved in this promise?" If possible, Harry turned even redder. "Er ... yeah," he said in a whoosh of a breath. What did all this mean? While Harry's face grew redder, Snape's grew even paler. "Which fluids, Potter?" Harry's eyes widened a bit. He couldn't look at Snape. "Semen, saliva ... and blood ..." he said quietly. Snape released Draco's hand and stood abruptly. He began pacing the room, muttering under his breath. He looked furious. Finally he went to the window, looking out and breathing hard. After a bit, he said in a low dangerous tone, "Let me make sure I have it all from you, Potter. You and Draco, two relatively powerful but inexperienced wizards, exchanged vows making him 'yours' in a

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magically bound space, involving no less than three types of bodily fluids, and, I have to assume, sex. Am I missing anything here?" Harry thought back to that moment, frowning. "I think that's it ..." he said slowly, and then he looked away from Snape again. "There were tears too ... if that matters," he mumbled. Snape stood staring at Draco and back to Harry, then walked over and sat down carefully in the chair again. He seemed to have run out of anger or anything to say for that matter. He looked at Draco and shook his head again. "Well, is that it?" Harry snapped loudly, suddenly angry. He didn't like that Snape didn't seem to have any answers for him. "What does this all mean? What am I supposed to do now?" Draco moaned, thrashing his head as his hand around Harry's arm tightened. Harry quickly looked down at Draco. "Draco?" he asked, getting very close to his face, bringing his hand up to grasp his chin. Draco nuzzled Harry's hand but didn't wake. His hand relaxed, but he did not release Harry's wrist. Harry groaned and looked up at Snape. "You have to do something," he said desperately. "There has to be something." Snape was quiet, watching them. "He has something all right," he said, sighing. "He has you. You didn't, by chance, order him not to die?" Harry rubbed his forehead. "I might have," he said, frustrated. "It's sort of hazy, but probably likely." Snape hung his head, his chin resting on his chest and his hair obscuring his face. "Apparently, you have saved his life." Harry's eyes widened. "I I have?" he asked. "So, then what do I do now? Why is he like this?" Harry gestured at Draco's limp form. "He is like this because even with ... what you two did ... there is only so long he can survive without food." Professor Snape seemed to have reverted to his teacher voice at this point. "And it will be important to ascertain exactly what the two of you promised. For now, at least, he is literally only alive because you won't let him die. The nature of your ... agreement ... seems to be that he, quite literally, belongs to you." Harry just stared at Snape, mouth hanging slightly open. "He belongs to me?" he asked, eyes wide. He couldn't believe it. "How

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how do we get him to wake up again?" "You tell him to wake up, Potter," Snape hissed. "Don't you understand? He gave you the power to magically compel him!" It was all too much. "I can tell him to do whatever I want and he has to do it?" Harry asked, unbelieving. He looked at Draco again, wondering if all it really would take would be for him to tell him to wake up. Snape glared at Potter. "Yes," he snapped, clearly very angry. Harry stared at Snape for a few seconds longer and then turned to face Draco again. "Draco, wake up," he said helplessly, still not entirely convinced that it would work at all. Draco groaned, slowly opening his eyes and blinking. He felt stretched and empty. He saw Harry and smiled weakly. Harry's mouth fell open completely and he let out one weak laugh. "Draco?" he asked, stroking his hair. "Harry." Draco's voice was weak and raspy. "What happened?" Harry smiled, feeling more relieved than he could ever remember feeling. "Erm ... it's a bit of a long story ..." he began. Snape huffed. "Which can wait until he is stronger, Potter." Draco's eyes widened at the sound of Snape's voice, and he looked in horror to find him sitting there. Harry looked over at Snape and nodded, actually agreeing with the man. Snape stood. "I have classes to teach. You are excused today, Potter, although not from the homework. I will inform the Headmaster of ... the nature of the emergency." He nodded to Draco and turned, leaving the room quickly. Harry took in a large breath and let it out slowly. "Are you all right?" he asked, getting up from his knees to sit on the edge of Draco's bed. Draco stared after Snape for a moment, frowning. He looked back at Harry, confused. "He knows?" Harry swallowed. "Yeah," he said quietly. "I had to tell him." "I knew I should have stayed in the Room of Requirement," Draco said with a sigh, secretly wondering what would happen to the body of someone if they were to die there. Harry raised an eyebrow. "Erm ... you wouldn't have died anyway ..." he said slowly. "I said you couldn't ... or something like that."

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Draco snorted. "Yeah, and I always do what I'm told," he said sarcastically. Harry bit his lip. "Erm, Draco, you wouldn't have died .... You have to do what I tell you ...." He flushed a bit. Draco frowned. "I know you don't want to believe this, but I am going to die. If not now, then soon." "No, Draco, you don't understand," Harry said lacing his fingers through Draco's. "You literally have to do what I tell you." Draco raised one eyebrow. "Nice try, but it doesn't work like that." Harry rubbed at his forehead for a moment, stressed beyond belief. "Fine," he said, "if you don't believe me, I'll prove it." He thought for a moment of something to tell Draco to do. "Put your finger in your mouth," he said simply. Draco found himself doing it before he really even had a chance to reply. His eyes widened and then narrowed. "Wha'?" he mumbled around his finger. "You can take it out now," Harry said sheepishly. "I sort of ... own you ..." he said, wincing. Draco removed his finger, staring perplexedly at the wet digit and then at Harry. "How did you do that?" His eyes narrowed. "That was like Imperio.'" "No," Harry said quickly, putting his hands up in defence. "I'm not even holding my wand. It's just ... remember last night?" Draco smirked a bit. "Yes." Harry couldn't help a smug little smile of his own, but then it was back to business. "Well, apparently, according to Snape, we made a binding promise when you told me that you belonged to me . I think he said it had something to do with the fact that there were multiple bodily fluids involved and sex, but he wasn't exactly clear .... In short, I own you now ... I suppose." The variety of facial expressions that crossed Draco's face at that point would have been comical under other circumstances. "We ... Snape ... you told him ... binding ... oh, fuck," he sputtered. "Yeah," Harry said, wincing again. "I had to, Draco. Ron and I took you up here and then he just showed up! What was I supposed to do?" Draco was still trying to process this. "You told Snape ... bodily

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fluids ... details. Not Ron too?" "Oh, God, no," Harry said, shaking his head. "Ron would be in that bed next to you if he knew what was going on. I only told Snape, although I think Hermione might suspect something, but probably not the extent of what's actually going on." Draco winced. "Please don't put the image of the Weasel in bed with me in my mind." Harry had to laugh at that, though it sounded more like a weird bird call. "So, what do we do?" he asked. Draco thought for a minute, and then sighed. "A binding promise is a form of blood magic," he said, thinking aloud. "Yeah ..." said Harry, waiting for more. Draco was thinking furiously about what he knew. This was the sort of stuff he learned at home, not at Hogwarts. "Two people exchange vows, bodily fluids and magic. It is a bit like the Unbreakable Vow." Harry frowned. "If that's true ... then what did we vow besides ... me owning you ... and you not dying?" Draco was dizzy and it was hard to remember the details. "I promised to be yours," he said softly, looking up at Harry. "Yeah, I remember," Harry said with a small smile. "This is all so complicated," he said, rubbing his forehead again. "What does it all mean? You can't die or else you die? That doesn't even make any sense." He paused. "Unless ... I would die too ...?" "I think it would be like ...." Draco winced. "Like the spell that binds house-elves. They have to obey to the best of their ability. We will have to research it." "Oh," Harry said, his eyebrows raised. Draco Malfoy was like his house-elf? Bloody fucking hell. Draco realised he should've been upset right then, but he still felt so very tired. "Can I sleep now?" he asked. Harry looked at Draco with a slight frown. "I think you should eat something before you do any sleeping," he said seriously. Draco looked at Harry. "You could end this all right now, you know. All you have to do is order me to die. Or even just let me die." Harry narrowed his eyes. "Nice try, but I'm going to have to go with a no on that one," he said firmly. Draco nodded, not really surprised. "You haven't ordered me to

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eat yet, but I will." Harry smiled, happy that he wasn't even going to have to force Draco to eat. He wished they were in the Room of Requirement so that a plate of food would simply appear, but they weren't, so Harry had to go off and get Madam Pomfrey to get Draco and himself something to eat.

CHAPTER TWELVE

Secret Keepers
Madam Pomfrey brought them soup and sandwiches, although only Harry ate the sandwiches. He fed Draco the soup carefully, every once in a while giving him a potion that Madam Pomfrey would hand him. Draco would have complained about being fed soup like he was a baby, but he just didn't have much energy for it. And there was the added bonus of Harry holding his chin as he ladled the soup in. He dozed between feedings. Every time he woke up, there was Harry, who would kiss him, feed him and then make him drink something obnoxious. The effort of eating seemed to be all Draco could manage before drifting off again. Harry sighed and put the bowl of soup down for the moment. What time was it? It felt like it had been forever, and yet it also felt like only a few minutes. Harry didn't have to wait long to know the time. Ron and Hermione entered the hospital wing, looking worried in Hermione's case and a bit disgruntled in Ron's. Harry looked at Draco quickly, checking if he was asleep. Draco was, thank goodness; Harry didn't think he could do anything with the boy awake. "Hey," he said to his friends. Hermione rushed forward. "How's he doing?" she asked awkwardly, but still caringly. Ron simply stood off to the side, seemingly confused as to why they were all there in the first place. Harry shrugged. "He'll be okay," he said quietly, staring at Draco's face. Hermione gave a tiny nod; she looked confused, too. "Harry, what's going on?" Harry winced. He knew that this would happen. "A lot," he said finally. Hermione pulled up a chair so that she could sit next to him. Ron

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moved closer and looked at Harry warily. Harry sighed resignedly. "It's sort of complicated," he said. Hermione nodded while Ron gave a humourless snort. Harry winced again. "First off ... I should probably tell you that we're ... erm ... together." He finished very quietly, as if saying it that way would make it less shocking. He was mistaken. Hermione's mouth dropped open and her eyes went wide. Ron started laughing madly. "Oh, God, Harry!" he laughed, clutching his stomach. "That's that's --" he wiped his eyes, "that's the funniest thing I've heard in ages!" Harry narrowed his eyes slightly. "I'm not joking, Ron," he said angrily. Ron laughed harder. "Stop, Ron!" Hermione yelled. "I don't think he's kidding!" Ron went silent and very pale. He looked at Harry, eyes terribly wide. "You're not serious, are you?" he asked. Harry scowled. "Yes, I'm serious," he said in a low, angry voice. Ron mouthed silently for a few seconds. "But that's you you're Malfoy?!" Harry nodded. "But that's disgusting!" Ron said, taking a step back. Hermione gasped. "Ron!" she said, sounding scandalised. He turned on her. "What?!" he asked, looking like he wanted to flee. "You can't tell me you believe this shit!" "I do!" she shouted at him. "Look at Harry! What makes sense, Ron?" Ron began mouthing silently again, looking from Harry to Hermione to Draco. "I this is I can't Harry, he's a bloke! He's Draco Malfoy!" Harry's eyes narrowed further. "Yes, I've noticed," he said dangerously. "He also has a rather nice cock." Ron's eyes went even wider, and he turned red. "You're a bloody ponce?!" he cried. "And if I am?" Harry asked in that same tone of voice. Ron shook his head, mouth agape. "I I have to go," he said. "I have to go." He rushed out of the room, Harry glaring after him. "Fuck him," Harry mumbled, unwilling to show just how much that had hurt.

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Hermione placed a hand on Harry's shoulder. "Harry, he'll I'm sure he'll come around," she squeaked. Harry wouldn't look up from Draco's face. "Whatever," he said, moving to tuck Draco's hair behind his ear. Hermione watched, going slightly pink. "I'll talk to him," she said. "Whatever," Harry repeated. She shifted around a little. "So, what's happened then?" Harry glanced at her. "He stopped eating," he said simply. "He got sick from that and not sleeping well." "Why did he stop eating?" she asked gently. "I I think it was from stress or something ..." he said slowly. Hermione raised her eyebrows. "Harry, you know you can tell me." Harry looked at her, frowning. He sighed. "He has a mission from Voldemort. He doesn't want to do it, so I think he was trying to kill himself ... he would've died if he hadn't been brought here today ...." He didn't add the part about the binding; somehow he thought he needed Draco's permission for that. Hermione gasped. "A mission from Voldemort?" she asked frantically. Harry nodded. "What does he have to do!" "He I think he has to kill someone ... but he said he's not going to do it. He says it was someone I care about ...." Hermione gasped again. "Oh, Harry," she said, clutching the top of his arm tightly. "Who is it?" Harry frowned deeper. "He wouldn't tell me. He says it doesn't matter, because he's not going to do it. He said he'll die if he doesn't do it ...." "Oh, Harry!" Hermione said again, squeezing tighter. "How what are you going to do?" she asked. Harry let out a sad sigh. "I don't know," he said, leaning forward and dropping his head into his hands. Hermione rubbed his back. "I think I love him, Hermione." Hermione bit her lip, her eyes beginning to fill with tears. "How long have you ..." she said weakly. "Only four days," Harry said quietly, knowing how absurd the whole thing sounded. "I dont even know how it's happened, but it

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has." "Four days and you love him?" Hermione asked. "Yes," Harry said fiercely, looking up at her. Hermione looked him in the eyes for a second and then she gave a small nod. Draco woke up to the sound of yelling. It had been so quiet and peaceful and then the angry voices disturbed it. He lay still, listening, hearing the end of the argument with Ron and the shift in tone when he left. He listened to Harry's defence of him and felt ... safe. A small smile curved his lips and he sighed. Harry didn't notice Draco wake up; neither, it seemed, did Hermione. "Harry, is there anything I can do?" she asked. "I'll do anything to help you; you know I will." "I don't know yet. We have to figure out something first. Draco and I haven't had time to talk yet, he's been too tired." "Thirsty now," Draco whispered, eyes open and watching the other two. Harry started at the sound of Draco's voice, and Hermione gasped quietly. Okay," Harry said quickly, grabbing a glass of water resting on the bedside table. He grasped Draco's chin and tilted the glass forward. Draco was still propped up on pillows, so he was able to drink without making too much of a mess. His face flushed at the idea of Hermione seeing him so weak like this. His grey eyes regarded her with a neutral expression. Harry finished with the water and put it back on the table. "Are you okay?" he asked, wiping at the small trickle that had flown down Draco's mouth and chin. He might've licked it up had Hermione not been present. Draco turned his attention back to Harry, his face transformed when he did; his gaze both softening and brightening. "I will be when you kiss me." He smirked, knowing it would embarrass Harry. Harry gave a very small wince. "Er okay," he said, leaning forward and giving Draco a very quick peck on the lips. He didn't look at Hermione. Draco rolled his eyes and frowned. He glanced at Hermione to

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gauge her reaction. Hermione had turned slightly pink and wasn't really looking at them. Harry finally looked at her and gave her an apologetic smile. She smiled back. "Er, how are you feeling, Malfoy?" she asked quietly. "Like an animated corpse. How about you?" He sighed. She frowned slightly, but didn't say anything. Harry sighed, sensing the extreme awkwardness in the air. "Hermione wants to help, Draco," he said, grasping his hand. Draco sighed, closing his eyes. Then he looked at Harry, eye contact challengingly direct. "If you can't kiss me in front of her," he said, "then you probably won't be able to tell her the rest." Harry bit his fingernail and swallowed. "Oh, all right, you prat," he said, leaning forward and kissing Draco properly this time. He turned red, and a quick glance at her told him that Hermione was red too. Count on the bloody Slytherin to torture the Gryffindors. Harry was very glad Ron wasn't there anymore. Draco sighed into the kiss, completely forgetting Hermione and the rest of the world. He needed this, he thought. When Harry pulled back, he noticed both Harry and Hermione were embarrassed. He smiled up at them. Harry rolled his eyes. "So should I tell her then?" he asked, scratching the back of his neck. Draco huffed. "You mean besides how great my cock is?" He smirked, enjoying their embarrassment. "Harry, you know I don't think anything can be done about this anyway." "You you heard?" Harry spluttered, but then he sighed and shook his head. "You know I'm going to do everything possible to make something work out." Hermione was looking at them both curiously. "What else is there to tell me?" she asked. Draco really looked at the girl. He had never got along with her. But he had to admit he liked her better than the Weasel, blood or no blood. She was intelligent enough and loyal. He finally made a decision. "Yes, if you want to tell her, you can." He looked at her. "Do you keep his secrets then?" Hermione looked fiercely at Draco. "Of course I do," she said,

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her head held a bit higher. Harry smiled at her. Draco nodded, a small smile on this face. "Good," he said, resting his head back and hoping the dizziness wasn't returning. "He will ... need you ... especially later." He sighed again, still watching her face. Harry frowned at Draco, while Hermione let out a sniff. "Can you stop talking about dying please?" he asked, glaring at Draco slightly. He didn't wait for an answer before turning to Hermione. "We made an accidental binding promise," he told her. "I basically own Draco now." Hermione looked at him, confused. "How can you do something like that on accident?" she asked. Harry flushed again. "We were, erm ... well we were wewerehavingsex." He looked at his hands. Merlin, this was the most embarrassing thing he'd ever had to do. "I cut my finger on a jar and ... when I wenttopreparehim ... it got inside ... we were also ... crying, so there were tears ... and there was saliva, of course, as well ... andsemen." He finished with a giant breath. Hermione's eyes were very wide. "That would be very highly magical," she said slowly. "What on earth did you say?" Harry winced and covered his face. "I told him I owned him," he said through his fingers, mortified. Draco chuckled, his own face flushing, not with embarrassment but in delight at Harry. Gods, he loved this boy. How was it not obvious to everyone? He shook his head. "And I agreed." "Yeah, and now I can tell Draco what to do," Harry added. "Clap your hands, Draco," he said to prove this to Hermione. Draco snarled at the unexpected order but his hands clapped. "Fucking warn me," he snapped, hands still weakly clapping. "Sorry," Harry said quickly. "You can stop now." Hermione looked at them each in turn. "That's ... very interesting," she said slowly. Draco snorted. "Interesting, yes." He frowned. Hermione looked at Draco thoughtfully. "So, if he can tell you what to do ... that's why you were eating, isn't it?" Harry answered for him. "He actually ate willingly, but only because I would've forced him to anyway, I think. I told him he couldn't die ... that's why he's not dead."

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"Wow, that is very powerful magic," Hermione said. "So, then why is there a problem? If you told him he can't die then everything should be all right .... Am I missing something?" Harry frowned and his eyes shot to Draco's arm and then back very quickly. Draco snorted. "Because forcing me to eat and having me die a painful death because I failed ... my father's master ... that's such an improvement." Hermione frowned. "How would you die a painful death if you failed?" she asked. "Did Voldemort tell you he was going to kill you?" Draco sighed and looked past her to rest of the room, making sure that Madam Pomfrey was out of ear shot. He grimaced, glancing at his arm. She had insisted he had been changed into loose nightclothes and he had insisted only Harry be there for that. The sleeve was long enough to cover it, but didn't have a cuff. "I have a deadline. I must follow his orders before the anniversary of my birth or die." "Draco," Harry began, "if I've told you you can't die ... would it still kill you?" Hermione only looked at Draco fearfully. "I hope so," he breathed, looking truly frightened, "because the alternative is worse. I really would be a walking corpse." "What are you two talking about?" Hermione asked, looking at them both with wide, fearful eyes. "I don't understand what's going on. What would kill you?" Draco put his right hand over his left forearm, pressing against the skin there. He could just feel the serpent underneath. He looked to Harry, waiting for him to tell him what he wanted now. Harry met Draco's eyes and stared for a bit. He nodded. "Show her," he said. "If there's anything she can do .... You have to show her." Draco grimaced and then reached for the edge of the sleeve and pulled it carefully up, exposing the serpent. Then he turned the arm underside up so that the head with its fangs could be seen. Hermione gasped and covered her mouth with her hands. "What is that?" she exclaimed, looking from Draco to Harry again. "It's a binding serpent," Harry said quietly. He looked up at Draco. "It'll kill him if he doesn't do what he's supposed to by the

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time his birthday comes around." "How?" "It'll inject poison. It'll inject poison if he tries to remove it as well." Hermione looked at Harry, her eyes filled with sympathy for him. Draco pulled the sleeve back down and closed his eyes. "It is irreversible. The poison has no antidote. And it is ... extremely painful." "I've never heard of it before," Hermione said. "It must be Dark magic?" She looked at Draco, even though she didn't really need an answer. "Yes, very," he said quietly. He looked at her. "Harry doesn't want to accept this. Maybe you will be able to help him understand." Harry scowled at Draco. Let's not give up hope," Hermione said, fierceness returning. "I'll try and look some things up ... maybe there's something in the Restricted Section . Have you thought about going to Dumbledore? If anyone can help you, it'll be him." Draco sighed and shook his head. "Gryffindors," he snorted, as if that was answer enough. Harry frowned again, feeling as if his face might get stuck that way. "Draco, she's right," he said. "Have you thought about going to Dumbledore?" Draco groaned, wincing at the mention of the name of the last person in the world he wanted to talk to or about. "No, I cannot talk with him about this," he said quietly. Harry looked at Draco, confused. "You'll tell Hermione, but not Dumbledore? The one person who could probably get you out of this?" Harry didn't understand why Draco was being this way. "It does make quite a bit of sense to go to Dumbledore," Hermione piped in. Draco closed his eyes, not lying when he said quietly, "I am really tired, can we talk about this later?" Harry sighed heavily. "All right," he said, grasping Draco's hand for a moment. Hermione looked at both boys. "I better get going then," she said, getting to her feet. She placed a hand on Harry's shoulder and squeezed. "I'll talk to Ron, Harry, and maybe I'll go to the library and

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try to see if I can find anything. Erm, goodnight, Malfoy. Bye, Harry." And then she turned and left, leaving Harry and Draco alone. Harry turned back to Draco. "It's only dinner, but do you think Pomfrey'll let me stay in here with you?" he asked. Draco's eyes popped open at that, looking suddenly frightened. "You can't leave," he said, holding Harry's hand tightly. Harry looked at Draco concernedly. "All right, all right, I won't leave," he said soothingly, leaning in to kiss Draco lightly. Draco sighed into the kiss, his other hand reaching up to tangle in Harry's hair, pulling him into a stronger kiss. Harry indulged him for a few seconds, but then forced himself to pull away when he sensed where it was going. "We can't do that in here," he whispered with a little laugh. "Need you," Draco whispered, not letting go of his hair or hand and trying to pull him down again. Harry's eyes widened. "Draco," he said, looking from left to right to see where Pomfrey was, "we can't." Draco actually whimpered, refusing to let go. "Harry, please," he begged. "What do you want me to do, stick my hand down the blankets?" Harry asked incredulously. "No, want you," Draco moaned, his hand clenching in Harry's hair. Harry groaned. "Pomfrey is in here," he said, pinching his eyes closed. "I can't get on top of you and shag you while she could just walk in at any moment! Listen to yourself!" "I don't care who is there," Draco gasped. Harry looked at Draco very confusedly. The way he was clutching at him and grasping at his hair was very unlike him ... at least in such an open environment. "Draco ... what the?" Harry asked, trying to pull away a bit. He looked up to see if Pomfrey was there again. Draco clutched at Harry, not letting go. He whimpered. "Draco, let go!" Harry said, panicking a little. Draco let go but grabbed the edge of the bed, moaning and begging. Harry flung backwards when Draco released him, staring at him with wide eyes. He got up from his chair so fast, he knocked it over, and he ran over to Pomfrey's office door and banged on it.

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Madam Pomfrey came to the door quickly. "What is it?" she asked, glancing over Harry's shoulder with a concerned look on her face. "I he I don't know what happened!" Harry said frantically, pointing at Draco. "He just started going mad and grabbing at me!" Madam Pomfrey rushed over to Draco. The boy lay clutching the sides of the bed and moaning, "Harry, please!" Harry had rushed over with Madam Pomfrey and he looked up at her at Draco's words. "What do I do!" he asked, hands fluttering over Draco. "I don't know what he needs!" Pomfrey frowned. "Did he say anything before he became upset?" Harry stared at Pomfrey, unsure of what to tell her. "He said he needed me," he said slowly. He wasn't sure if Pomfrey was able to figure anything out about what sort of relationship he and Draco had. "What do I do!" he asked again, wishing that Snape was present for the first time in his life. She frowned. "Draco, can you understand me? What do you need?" Draco nodded. "Need Harry, need Harry inside." Harry's eyes went very wide. He gulped. "I he I don't know -" he spluttered, flabbergasted. Pomfrey looked a bit disconcerted, frowning from one boy to the other. "Does that make sense to you, Harry?" "Erm ... yeah, I I think," he said, still staring raptly at Draco. Pomfrey frowned. "Do you want to explain this to me, Harry?" Harry bit his lip, but there was no time to go slowly with this, no time to beat around the bush. "He's talking about having sex," he said, his embarrassment leaving him while Draco's moans grew louder. "I think he needs me to have sex with him." Madam Pomfrey flushed and shook her head. She opened her

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mouth a couple times and seemed to think better of what she was going to say. "Well?" Harry asked loudly. "What do I do! It's like he's in pain or something!" She sighed and pressed her hand to her forehead. "Let's move Mr Malfoy to a private space we have for contagious illnesses." Harry nodded hurriedly, looking at Pomfrey expectantly. Pomfrey pulled a wand and used a spell to lift Draco from the bed. She floated him to the back of the ward, through a door, and into a private room, settling him in. She turned to Harry. "I will need to discuss this with the Headmaster when he returns." Harry nodded, going slightly red again. He glanced over at the bed where Draco was still moaning and calling out for him and then back to Pomfrey. He stared at her awkwardly, waiting for her to leave. "Make sure he eats," she said, and then turned and left, closing the door behind her. Harry let out a sigh of relief and rushed over to the bed. He grasped Draco's head and pulled him close. "I'm here now, okay?" he said lowly. "It's just me and you now." Draco was crying. He gasped at Harry's touch. "I neeeed you!" he sobbed. "Shhhh," Harry hushed, stroking Draco's hair. "Lift up your arms, love." Draco did, sighing at Harry's touch. Harry slid his hands under Draco's nightshirt, lifting it slowly off him, taking special care to avoid touching his left forearm too much. He threw the shirt off to the side and then straddled Draco's lap, one knee on either side of him. He hadn't done his tie up all day and so he simply threw that away. He shook off his rumpled robe and removed his strangely buttoned shirt, before lowering himself again and giving Draco a long slow kiss, trying to calm him. Draco's moans shifted tone, sounding of pleasure rather than pain. When Harry lay atop him, his hand slid around his body and he arched into the contact. "This is better now, hmm?" Harry whispered between kisses down Draco's neck. He was working on his trousers now, wanting Draco to have what he needed as quickly as possible.

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"Yes, Harry," Draco gasped, his hands running up and down Harry's back and arms. "I need you, Harry. I need you inside." Harry nodded. "I know," he said. "Shhh, I know." He finished unfastening Draco's trousers. "Lift up," he said, tugging on them. Draco lifted his hips, pushing up with his feet and sighing when Harry slid the soft cloth over his erection and down his legs. Once Draco's clothes were removed, Harry rolled off him for a second and kicked off his shoes and socks. He pulled his own trousers and underwear off and rolled back on top of Draco, kissing him gently and slowly again. Draco lay whispering, "Harry," over and over again while he watched Harry undress. When he was back, he relaxed into his embrace. Harry's eyes roamed quickly around the room until they landed on a bottle of lotion that Pomfrey had to have left before she had gone. He Summoned the bottle and squeezed some of the thick liquid into his palm. He slicked his cock quickly and then squeezed some more onto his fingers. "Spread your legs, Draco," he said gently, but the ability to think was leaving him. Draco gasped and eagerly spread for Harry, his arms reaching up to hold the iron frame of the bed. Harry gently ran his lotion-slicked fingers around Draco's entrance before slowly inserting one. He moved it around until he felt Draco relax around it. He added a second and did the same. "All right?" he asked, his breathing a bit shallow now. "Please, now, Harry," Draco begged, his hands painfully tight on the bed frame in his effort to hold on. Harry bit his lip, but nodded. He slicked himself with more lotion before moving into position, pushing Draco's legs further apart. He slid in just a bit, gasping at the sensations. "Yes, Harry," Draco cried out, pushing against him, trying to force himself up Harry's cock. He wanted all of him and now. Harry tried his hardest to steady himself, wanting to focus on Draco and only Draco. He slid forward a bit more, eyes squeezed tightly shut. He grasped the bed frame right above Draco's hands and then pushed all the way in, not being able to help a gasp. "Yessss," Draco encouraged. "Fuck me, Harry!" He didn't care who heard; all he could think about was how he wanted this more

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than anything. Harry grit his teeth at that and squeezed his eyes even more tightly shut. He pulled halfway out and pushed back in again, making one of his strange throat noises. Merlin, he wanted to just thrust. He wanted to thrust, and thrust, and thrust, but he held back, determined to be gentle. "Please, Draco begged. "Harder, please!" He felt like he would come apart without it. He released the bed and reached for Harry, hands grabbing his waist, wrapping his legs around his hips and pulling with what strength he had left. Harry gasped and moaned when Draco practically made him slam into him. He couldn't hold back anymore, he couldn't. He pulled out and thrust back in again, and again, and again, each time as deep as he could go. He went faster, his heart trying to race his snapping hips. "Ah, Draco!" he let out, panting heavily. "Yours!" Draco gasped. "I'm yours, say it!" Each thrust brought him closer to that feeling of wholeness that he was desperate to find. Harry could hardly breathe now he was moving so fast. "You're mine!" he cried, letting go of the bed frame and holding himself up on his arms now. "No one else's, mine!" He adjusted himself a bit, trying to hit that spot. Draco's entire body shuddered, but he couldn't have said whether it was from what Harry did or what he said. The two blended to make him scream with rapture. Harry was crying out on every thrust now, sweat dripping from his nose; his glasses, which he always seemed to forget to take off, hanging from his left ear. "Ah! Draco, I love you so much! You're mine, forever! Mine!" "Forever, yours!" Draco echoed, his body shuddering violently under Harry. Gods, this was worth anything. Harry tried, he did, but he couldn't keep from coming any longer. He let out one final scream and was spurting hard inside of Draco. His arms gave out and he leaned on his elbows, not crushing Draco just yet. Draco felt Harry come, felt his magic ripple through his body, bringing pleasure and comfort, and a sense of wholeness he had never known before this strange week. He came crying Harry's name as tears streamed down his face again.

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Harry finally settled his weight on top of Draco and held him close, whispering, "I love you, I love you, I love you," into his ear. Draco gasped and used both his arms and legs to hold Harry tight against him, keeping the other boy's cock buried in him as well. His entire body still tingled with the after-effects of both magic and the orgasm. Harry's breathing slowly sunk back to normal. He simply stayed like he was, letting Draco hold him for as long as he wanted. He took in the pale blond colour of his hair, which was right in his face. He took in his smell, all boy, and sweat, and... vanilla. Harry sighed; he could've stayed there forever. Finally, the shuddering slowed and faded and Draco's arms and legs relaxed. He sighed contently, opening his eyes to look into Harry's face. He licked his lips and smiled. "I needed that," he said a bit sheepishly. Harry grinned. "So I heard," he said, pulling out of Draco. Draco groaned a bit as he pulled out, feeling both sore and missing it. He laid his legs down, stretching muscles that had been so tense. He even shook his hands out a bit as they were still sore from gripping the bed. Harry turned and lay on his side, head propped up on his arm. "Hungry?" he asked, remembering what Pomfrey had told him. "Yes." Draco smiled. "Just, Harry?" "Hmm?" Harry asked, already moving to get up and get some food. "No more soup, okay?" he said, sitting up and putting his arms around his knees. Harry laughed. "Yeah, okay," he said, getting off the bed and throwing his trousers on. He shrugged and used his shirt to wipe Draco's spunk from his stomach. He left the room and came back a few minutes later, carrying a tray of more sandwiches and a pitcher of pumpkin juice. Draco had pulled the shirt back on and was sitting up, legs crossed in bed when Harry returned. "So where are we now?" he said, looking around the nearly bare room. Harry laughed. "You were that out of it?" he asked, setting the tray on the bed and pouring Draco and himself glasses of juice. "Apparently," Draco answered, an eyebrow raised. He reached

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for one of the sandwiches. "We're still in the hospital wing; this is just a room where they keep contagious people, I guess. That's what Pomfrey said anyway." Harry shrugged and grabbed a sandwich for himself. Draco actually ate the sandwich without pause and then reached for the pumpkin juice, drinking half a glass in big gulps. He thought about what Harry was telling him. "What did you tell her to get us a room together?" Harry laughed weakly. "I just told her I needed to have sex with you," he said, giving a half-shrug. "She said she'd have to tell Dumbledore about it though." Draco made the mistake of trying to drink more pumpkin juice at that moment. It was spewed all over himself and Harry. "You what!" he gasped. Harry leant away from Draco and put his hands up, but it didn't stop the juice. "Thank you for that," he said wiping at his chest. "You heard me. I just told her I needed to have sex with you, and she put us in here." Draco looked down at himself, now covered in come and pumpkin juice, and began to laugh. He laughed so hard he could hardly breathe. Harry raised an eyebrow at Draco. "So is that what I looked like when I 'lost it'?" he asked, shaking his head and smiling slightly. He was very happy to see that Draco had the strength to laugh hard. Draco's laughter subsided slowly and then he looked about himself. "Where's my wand? You're useless with Cleaning Spells." Harry frowned and looked around as well. "Erm, I don't know actually. Pomfrey's probably got it along with your clothes." He Summoned his own wand. "Here, use mine," he said, tossing it to Draco. Draco held it for a moment, feeling the different energy in the wand. Then did the Cleaning Spell on himself, Harry, and the orange spotted bed. "So, is there anyone who doesn't know we're fucking?" He smirked. Harry shook his head at Draco. "I doubt it," he said, leaning back on his arms. "Hermione took it far better than I expected, Ron was spot on though," he added bitterly. Draco shook his head. "Can't believe I am saying this, but maybe

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praising my cock was a bit much for him?" Harry began laughing. "He deserved it," he said. "He was being a prat." "And that was new how?" Draco arched an eyebrow. "Oh, c'mon," Harry said, pushing Draco playfully. "He's not always a prat." Draco shoved him back. "I haven't seen different." Harry leapt forward like a giant cat, sending the tray flying. He pinned Draco beneath him and grinned ear to ear. "That's because you were too busy being a prat to him," he said. Draco struggled against Harry, groaning at how fucking good it felt to be held down by him. "Was not," he argued, grinning. "Well, I think maybe you must've gotten knocked hard on the head or something, because I seem to recall you being quite the prat." Harry secretly moved one hand so that it was poised for tickling if Draco tried to argue with him again. "The Weasel asked for it," Draco drawled in a familiar tone, only the sparkle in his eyes giving him away. "Oh, really?" Harry asked, moving his hand closer. "Is simply walking down the corridor screaming to be called a, what was it? Oh, yes, an over-grown piece of shit that smells of poor?" Harry asked, remembering one of Draco's cruder insults. Draco's face went serious at that, the humour leaving him in a rush. "No, it isn't," he said quietly. Harry frowned a bit, he hadn't really meant to say that, but he hadn't been able to help it. "Well," he said, "it doesn't matter." He laid his head on Draco's shoulder, plucking at his shirt with his fingers now. Draco was quiet, thinking over the past and his interactions with the ... Ron Weasley and, for that matter, Hermione Granger. There was so much anger there. He wanted to deny it, or apologise for it, or explain it, but found he didn't have the words. Instead, he brought his arm around Harry and held him, resting his hand on the back of his head. Harry sighed, sort of sad that the playful mood had been shot, but it was his own fault. "There's a lot of stuff that's happened in the past," he said slowly. "It's probably best left untouched. I've said things to you, you've said things to me hell, you even broke no,

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stomped my nose this year," he said, flicking Draco's. Draco sighed. "That's when I figured it out, you know," he said, looking down at Harry's face. Harry sighed too. "Figured out what?" he asked, relaxing further into Draco's body. "The train, when I ... did that," Draco said quietly, petting Harry's hair. "You were lying there, immobile. And I wanted, desperately wanted, to kiss you. It made me angry. So I hurt you." Harry raised his eyebrows. "Draco!" he said, almost wanting to laugh at that bit of logic. "It's not that you are a bloke," Draco said quietly. "It was who you are and that you had already refused me." Harry shrugged. "I don't fancy you because you're a bloke ..." he said slowly. He sighed again. "Sorry about the whole refusing you thing. You insulted Ron, and he was the first person who was ever truly nice to me in my life." "You met me before you met him," Draco said quietly. "In Diagon Alley." Harry frowned. "Yeah, but you were stuck up. Sorry," he added in an undertone. "And you reminded me of my cousin." Draco's face coloured, familiar feelings of anger and hurt overwhelming him for a moment. "I was ... trying to impress you." Harry winced, hearing the hurt in Draco's voice. "You didn't even know who I was," he said softly, kissing the side of Draco's neck. "No, it wasn't the 'Boy Who Lived' I was attracted to, it was you." He closed his eyes, swallowing the lump in his throat. "I was pretty upset when I found out who you were actually." Harry raised his eyebrows. "Why?" he asked, grabbing Draco's right hand to play with it in the air. "You know who my father is and you have to ask that?" Draco grimaced. "Oh, that," Harry said grimacing as well. "You knew all this at eleven?" He continued to play with Draco's hand, entwining their fingers. "Which part? That the famous half-blood child had killed my father's master? Or that I was attracted to you?" Draco said, squeezing Harry's hand in his. "Well, I'm not surprised that you knew about the mess with

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Voldemort," Harry said, "but I wasn't attracted to anyone really until at least third year .... Maybe I'm a bit strange." "I guess I was just precocious." Draco grinned. "I lost my virginity in fourth year." Harry's eyebrows rose even higher. "To who, if you don't mind me asking?" "To whom?" Draco laughed. "My date for the Yule Ball. Can you even remember who that was?" "Pansy?" Harry asked, his nose scrunched up with distaste. Draco laughed, shaking his head at Harry's reaction. "See, you would have had more fun if I had been your date," he teased. Harry laughed a bit. "Yes, very true," he said. He thought for a minute. "I wonder what wouldve happened if I'd gone with Ginny Weasley ...." "What is it with you and the Weasley family anyway?" Draco frowned. Harry sighed. "I don't know," he said. "They're the best people I've ever met. They treat me like a part of them. I've never had a family before. I guess I just like it." Draco unlaced his fingers from Harry's and then turned the other boy's hand, bringing it to his lips. He placed a kiss in the centre of Harry's palm. Then he smirked and kissed it again, allowing his tongue to slide out. Harry smirked and raised an eyebrow. "Do you think of nothing else?" he asked slyly, biting Draco's earlobe.

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

Dangerous Addiction
Draco moaned when Harry bit him and then he drove his tongue against Harry's hand, sucking and licking. "Guess not," Harry said, and then he propped himself up, a sudden idea coming to him. "Suck my fingers like you would suck my cock, Draco," he said, knowing that Draco would have to obey. "Prat," Draco managed just before he swirled his tongue around the tip of Harry's middle finger. Then he began to slide his lips down the digit. Harry smirked. "Mmm," he sighed as he watched Draco. His actual cock seemed to perk up a bit, like it knew it was very possibly about to get something. Draco began to suck and lick all four fingers, taking them into his mouth together, grey eyes watching Harry as he did. Harry bit his lip and he twitched a little, his mouth watering as he watched. Draco was panting now, sucking and licking feverishly at Harry's fingers. His own cock was hard, standing out against blond curls from under the hem of the nightshirt he was wearing. His eyes glanced to Harry's crotch to see if he had a similar reaction. He moaned around the fingers when he saw Harry was getting hard too. Harry watched Draco for about a second longer and then leant forward to catch Draco's tongue on his finger with his own. Draco whimpered, continuing to suck Harry's fingers and wanting that tongue. Harry smirked at Draco's whimper and let his tongue just brush Draco's again. Draco whimpered again, trying to use his eyes to beg Harry, since his mouth was busy. Harry took his mouth away and smirked one last time. "All right, that's enough," he said, wondering what Draco would do after he was allowed to stop.

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Draco was on Harry with the speed that had made him a Seeker, throwing the other boy back and pinning him down. His mouth closed over Harry's, and his hand reached for the bulge in Harry's trousers. Harry almost had to laugh at Draco's enthusiasm, but didn't let out a single guffaw when he felt Draco's hand. Draco made short work of the fasteners on Harry's trousers and began pushing his way under the fabric. Since Harry had put them on in such a hurry, there were no shorts to impede swift arrival at his goal. He wrapped long fingers around Harry's cock and gently pulled. "Oh, fuck," Harry let out, his eyes sliding shut. He thrust his hips up. "Yes, that's the idea," Draco whispered before thrusting his tongue into Harry's mouth, preventing a coherent answer. They were an odd pair, Draco wearing only a shirt and Harry only trousers. Harry moaned into Draco's mouth and reached down blindly for Draco's erection. He grasped it and pulled, matching Draco's rhythm. Draco broke the kiss, gasping. "No, not yet," he said, resting his forehead against Harry's. Harry reluctantly released Draco and simply lay there. He wanted to let Draco do whatever he wanted. Draco nodded, releasing Harry's cock as well. He moved down the bed and began sliding Harry's trousers down, waiting for Harry to lift his hips as he did. Harry lifted up, sighing again. He, once again, found himself wondering how the hell Draco managed to turn him on so easily. Draco looked down at Harry with what might've been a cruel glint in his eyes. "Put your hands above your head and hold on to the bed frame," he said quietly. Harry quirked an eyebrow and smirked slowly, doing as he was told. He wondered if Draco could hear his heart speed up; he certainly could. "Give me your word that you won't move your arms without my permission or order me to do anything unless it is to stop because you can't handle it," Draco said seriously. Harry's heart sped up even more. "You have my word," he said, excited. Draco's grin should probably have scared him. He nodded and

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turned, straddling Harry's legs facing away from him. Harry raised an eyebrow, wondering what on earth Draco was going to do. He gripped the bed frame harder, his hands already hurting a bit. Draco positioned himself so that he sat just above Harry's knees and was gripping the other boy with his own thighs. If Harry kept his word, he shouldn't be able to move much from this position. Then Draco leant forward and began to lick Harry's toes. Harry bit his lip, but kept quiet, still having no clue as to what Draco was doing. It did feel good though. It tickled a bit, but it felt good. Draco proceeded to use the same technique he had been ordered to use on Harry's fingers, on his toes. He licked and sucked at his toes in a way that would tickle, be a turn on, or both. He hoped both. Harry twitched a little bit, torn between the urge to pull his feet away from Draco, and not wanting him to stop. He wanted to ask what was going on, but he also didn't want to say one word. It was a little confusing, actually. Draco smiled at the twitch and added his hands, massaging Harry's instep to the sensations. Harry twitched again, wondering if it was strange for this to be turning him on. He watched Draco's arse displayed right before him and smiled, feeling very much like a king. Draco pulled up and looked down at Harry's feet. He glanced back over his shoulder at their owner. He looked entirely too smug, Draco decided. So he reached his fingers out and dragged blunted nails along the soles. Harry really twitched this time. He tried to pull his foot away and let out a short, "Ah!" Draco liked that and glanced back again to see Harry's face. Evil grin on his own, he continued to run his fingernails in circles on the soles of Harry's feet. Harry's face scrunched up, and he began wiggling his feet around, trying to get away. He still didn't say anything though; he was determined not to say anything. Draco slid his arse up Harry's legs so that he was backed up against the other boy's balls and cock. Then he brought his fingernails up Harry's legs, paying particular attention to any hints of

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other ticklish spots. Harry had to moan now, even if it was only a small one. He gritted his teeth and twitched when Draco's nails hit around his calves. Draco continued the slow torture, finding and exploiting Harry's ticklish spots on his calves, knees and thighs, all the while wriggling his arse against the other boy's crotch. Harry closed his eyes now, not being able to take the sight in front of him anymore. It didn't help much; he could still feel everything. Draco glanced every so often over his shoulder to see Harry's face and smirked. Then he slid up just enough that his arse rested atop Harry's cock. He leaned forward and added nips and licks to his exploration of Harry's thighs. Harry was taking long slow breaths now, his eyes still shut. He had a very vivid imagination though, because he still felt like he could see everything. Now Draco pushed Harry's knees apart, trailing those fingertips up Harry's inner thighs as he spread his legs. Harry gasped; he couldn't help it. The feeling of Draco's fingers sliding slowly across the skin of his thighs was maddening. He wanted to grab Draco and make him do something besides what he was doing, but he didn't. He refused, feeling a bit of their old competition. Draco slid up along Harry's cock so that he could lean down and nip at those lovely muscled thighs. It made his arse rise a bit and brought his cock sliding against Harry's. Harry let out a reluctant whine now, thrusting up just a little at that delicious contact. His hands gripped harder, his eyes tightly shut. Draco chuckled, putting even more effort on the spots that Harry reacted the strongest to. He slid up more, his belly against Harry's, and nipped high on Harry's inner thighs, just below the joint with his hips. Harry made a throaty noise, cracking his eyes open just a bit. Merlin, Draco looked so good, so fucking good, so fucking good, so fucking ... Harry could feel his control starting to slip; he gripped the bed even harder. Draco made sure to avoid Harry's cock and balls, working his

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mouth around each side, nipping at the joint and then up his hips. His arse had slid so far as to be resting just below Harry's chin at this point. Harry swallowed heavily, his eyes focused on Draco right in front of him. It took everything he had to stay like he was. He had to move; he wasn't going to be able to take this much longer. "Draco," he moaned very quietly. "Mmm," Draco answered, nuzzling his face into the hair around his lover's cock. Harry gritted his teeth. "Draco, please," he said, not being able to stop the begging anymore. Draco grinned, nipping at the base of Harry's cock. Apparently, please did not constitute an order, because he felt no compunction to obey. "Yes?" He almost laughed at the needy sound of Harry's voice. Harry groaned with frustration. "Please, please," he said, not wanting to give in, but thinking that he wouldn't be able to hold back for much longer. "Please? Please what, Harry?" Draco answered in a husky voice. He blew on the hard cock in front of him. Harry arched up. "Please, do something! Touch me, suck me, anything, please!" His knuckles were white, his eyes shut again. Draco loved the sound of Harry begging. He would almost have preferred to keep torturing just to hear more of it. He was mildly distracted to note that the please did indeed negate the command. He lifted himself up on his knees, so that his cock hung teasingly in front of Harry, and leant down to run his tongue up the length of Harry's cock. "Ahhhh," Harry let out slowly. "Yes, yes, that!" He threw his head back, now more than ever wanting to grab the cock in front of him. Draco chuckled darkly at Harry's response, and, holding himself up with one hand, used the other to gently grasp Harry's erection and position it at his lips. He licked the head slowly, very slowly. Harry hands were hurting now, but he didn't let go. He locked his leg muscles up and his toes curled. "Fuck, Draco, please!" he begged some more. Perversely, it was like his feelings of old. Draco didn't want to

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give in. He wanted Harry to break first. He loved hearing Harry beg and plead. He continued his slow licks and made sure that his own cock grazed Harry's chin as he moved. Harry actually tried to move his head to try and reach Draco's cock, but he couldn't get to it, it was just out of reach. "Uggggh," he groaned, feeling like a child who wanted to stomp his feet. He let his hands loosen up, just about ready to stop this madness. Draco swayed his hips so that his cock swayed in front of Harry, continuing to just graze against his face. Then he blew again, on the wet head of Harry's cock. That was it. Forgetting that he had promised not to, Harry let go of the bed and grabbed Draco's hips, pulling him up further. He grabbed his cock with one hand and began licking at it feverishly. Draco nearly screamed at the sudden contact with his aching cock, burying his face against Harry's hip, his hand clutching at Harry's cock. It was very odd to try to do this to Draco at this angle. His balls sort of got in the way, so Harry improvised by licking and sucking those as well, while thrusting up against Draco's hand. Draco was panting, lost in the sensations, his cheek pressed against Harry's hip. He tried to concentrate on his fingers, sliding them along Harry's thrusting cock. Harry continued to tongue everywhere he could reach. Since he had lost the first competition of who would lose control first, he was now determined to make Draco come before himself. Draco knew he was lost now. He was gasping and clinging to Harry's body as the other man tongued him. He tried to concentrate long enough to return the favour, but Harry seemed intent on destroying his ability to think. Harry actually grinned when the action between his own legs ceased. He knew it meant that Draco was losing control quickly. He doubled his efforts and moved his head up a bit to lick at Draco's entrance. "Fuck!" Draco gasped, trying not to grind down against Harry's face. His fingers were clutching Harry's hips so hard there would certainly be marks. Harry's grin widened and he pushed his tongue into Draco, stabbing at the opening. He started stroking Draco with the hand

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that still grasped his cock. "Oh, Merlin, fuck, yes!" Draco was babbling now, feeling like he was a writhing mass of pleasure. Harry wanted to laugh now, his own body tingling with an alltogether different kind of pleasure. He sped his hand up and matched the pace with his tongue, starting to hum the Hogwarts anthem. Draco was gasping, beginning to lick and bite at the flesh under his face. He wasn't doing it for Harry as much as he just couldn't help himself. He was overwhelmed by the sensations. "Harry, yes, Harry," he chanted between nips and gasps. Harry smiled wider than ever. He pulled faster, thrust his tongue deeper, and ceased the humming, moaning now. "Yours, Harry, yours!" Draco screamed, the orgasm building from his centre and radiating out in waves through the rest of his body. He felt warm and cold at the same time and held on to Harry's body like he would drown if he let go. Harry smirked with triumph, still licking, sucking, and pulling gently. Draco moaned, twitching as Harry continued to play with his oversensitive parts. Harry chuckled a bit and released Draco, cocking his head to the side to look around Draco's body. "All right, there?" he asked. "Mmm?" Draco managed to murmur, but didn't move. Harry raised an eyebrow and gave Draco a little shake. Please, not again, he thought. Draco opened his eyes and looked up at Harry. "Yeah, just, fuck." Harry sighed and relaxed, his smirk returning. "Yes, I know," he said smugly, placing his hands behind his head. "You are pleased with yourself then?" Draco chuckled before taking a sharp nip out of the nearest part of Harry's thigh. Harry jumped a bit. "Ouch!" he said, whacking Draco on the arse. "Mmm," Draco responded instead of yelping. He looked over at Harry and waggled his eyebrows. Harry grinned and raised an eyebrow of his own. "You truly have a one-track mind," he said with a small laugh. "But since you're in the mood," he said, gesturing to his erection, "be my guest."

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Draco laughed and tried to pull himself up. He ended up pushing himself off and rolling onto his back. "How about you climb up here?" He smiled. Harry raised both eyebrows and cocked his head again. "You're up for another go?" he asked incredulously. Draco grinned. "No, I want to suck you while I lie here!" Harry laughed. "Oh," he said sitting up. "I was about to say, not even you can recover that quickly." He moved so that he was nearly sitting on Draco's chest, his cock in his face. Draco grabbed a pillow, putting it behind his head to give him a better angle. "Now, let's see if you are any better at holding still this time," he teased. Harry smirked, waiting for Draco to get started. "Anytime now," he said, enjoying the teasing. Draco shook his head and then grinned at the beautiful cock in front of his face. He reached for it with one hand, laying the other on Harry's thigh for the moment. He used his long fingers to gently caress the soft skin of it. "Mmm," Harry moaned quietly. "You know, you're really good at that," he said. He had no idea why he was feeling so smug, probably because he had received permission to have sex, been excused from classes, and Draco was starting to act normal again. The world felt like it was miles away once more. "Lots of practise." Draco smirked, wrapping his fingers around Harry's cock and angling it to get a lick. He swirled his tongue around the head with the air of a man enjoying a decadent sweet. Harry was quickly losing the ability to be witty. He replied to that with a, "Ngh," and concentrated on trying to keep still. Draco smiled at Harry's reaction and brought his lips to his cock, lips pursed to slide over the head. His tongue followed his lips, teasing with the tip. His hand on Harry's thigh steadied the other boy. Harry felt very odd, hovering over Draco, like he was going to fall over or something, but it didn't matter much. It felt too good. Draco started sucking harder, bobbing his head and making soft, happy noises as he did. His hand on Harry's thigh gripped him tightly. Harry yelped and then let out a long moan. He wasn't quite panting yet, but his breathing was quick and shallow. "Oh, fuck,

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Draco!" Head bobbing faster, his hand around Harry's cock moving with him, Draco moaned and breathed hard through his nose. The sight of Draco doing this was amazing. Harry couldn't tear his eyes away. "Oh, fuck, fuck, please, fuck," he said nonsensically, panting quickly now. Draco took a deep breath and plunged down, taking Harry's cock all the way to the back of his throat, muscles swallowing around it. Harry screamed. There was no other word for it. The sounds he made after sounded like panting laughs almost. He was delirious with pleasure, and very close. Draco pulled his mouth halfway up, taking a quick gulp of air, and then plunged down again, his hand sliding down to cup Harry's balls. Harry squeezed his eyes shut, feeling the building pleasure. "Close, close," he whispered, moaning again. Draco gently rolled Harry's balls as the head of the other boy's cock hit the back of his throat. "Ahhh!" Harry let out when he finally came into Draco's mouth. Every nerve in his body seemed to be on fire with feeling. Draco was glad he had taken a deep breath. He focused on swallowing as quickly as he could so as not to choke. The wave of power that followed was what nearly undid him though, and it took him almost too long to remember to pull back and breathe. Harry was motionless for a moment before rolling over and landing on his back, panting still. "Holy fuck," he said, staring up at nothing in particular, his mouth open slightly. Draco coughed a bit, trying to clear his air passages, and then took several deep breaths. "Yes," he gasped. Harry took in a big breath himself and let it out slowly, blinking a few times. "I would ask where you learnt that," he said, "but I don't think I want to know." Draco snorted. "I told you, precocious." Harry laughed too. "Sorry I'm not as wonderfully adept at sex as you are," he smirked, "but I'll learn." Draco laughed. He was surprised to realise he laughed a lot around Harry. "You are already dangerously addictive," he said. Harry smiled. "Am I really?" he asked, waggling his eyebrows. "I

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could say the same thing about you." "I'm hungry," Draco said. "Did you dump the rest of those sandwiches on the floor?"

CHAPTER FIFTEEN

Compulsion
Harry sat up with great effort. "I don't know," he said, crawling over the bed. He discovered a few sandwiches that had survived the shagging. "Here's some," he said. Draco pulled himself up on his elbows and looked at Harry with a grimace. "Off the floor?" Harry laughed. "No," he said. "There's only a few, but they managed not to land with the rest of them." "What were they on when they landed?" Draco asked suspiciously. "The tray," Harry said, reaching down and grabbing it. "Good," Draco said. "Is there any pumpkin juice left?" "Juice is on the table," Harry said, pointing. He put the tray with the three sandwiches on the bed. Draco propped himself up on one side and reached for a sandwich. Harry smiled and watched him, a warm fuzzy feeling in his stomach. He felt like jumping up and dancing for the second time that week. Draco swallowed and frowned up at Harry. "The juice?" Harry shook his head at Draco and got up. "Yes, your Majesty," he said sarcastically, walking over to get him some juice. He brought it over to him, flopping back down on the bed. "Thanks," Draco said, rolling his eyes at Harry and gulping down the juice. He kept his eyes on Harry, marvelling at the sight of the naked boy in front of him. Harry lay down on his stomach, facing Draco, and propped his head up on his hands. "I'm glad you're eating," he said, watching Draco take another bite. Draco shrugged and finished off the sandwich, following it with the rest of his glass of pumpkin juice. Then he rolled onto his back and yawned.

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Harry crawled over to Draco and looked down at him. "Tired?" he asked, smiling. "Mmhmm," Draco hummed, his eyes closing. Harry's smile grew as the feeling of unmistakable love overtook him. He kissed the end of Draco's nose. "Why don't you lay where you're supposed to so we can go to sleep?" Draco didn't answer. He rolled onto his side, fast asleep. Harry laughed. He pulled Draco up a bit and moved him so that his head was at the top of the bed. He covered him up, climbed in next to him, and simply watched Draco sleep. Finally he fell asleep too, with a big smile on his face. May 6 Draco breathed deep and became aware of Harry's body wrapped around his. It felt so good. He wanted to always wake up this way. Pain stabbed his heart when he remembered that always was less than a month for him. Harry had an arm wrapped around his waist, clutching him tight. He laid his hand atop Harry's and pressed it against him. Harry was having a wonderful dream about Draco when he felt some sort of pressure. His eyelids fluttered open and he was greeted with the most wonderful sight: the real Draco lying next to him. He snuggled up closer and yawned, smiling. He couldn't seem to stop smiling. Draco loved the moment when Harry awoke and he was able to look into those emerald eyes. His heart felt like it stopped for a minute and he had a flash of memory. A boy in a cloak shop with emerald eyes. That had been what had done it. Not the bloody scar. He had looked into those eyes and had been lost. And the sight of them had never ceased to affect him. "Morning," Harry said, taking in a deep breath. He leant in a bit more and kissed Draco before burying his face in the space between Draco's neck and the pillow. Draco swallowed the lump in his throat and managed to croak out, "Morning." His whole body was suddenly very awake at the feel of Harry's breath on his neck. He brought his fingers up and began to card back Harry's messy hair. Harry sighed at the feeling of Draco's fingers in his hair. "I don't

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want to get up," he moaned, voice muffled. Draco smirked, and, drawing Harry's hair away from his ear, whispered against it, "I think I already am." Harry smirked too. "Mmm, really?" he asked. He made his hand crawl along Draco's stomach to rest just above his groin. "Mmhmm," Draco hummed, and thrust a bit forward to meet Harry's hand, his own hand reflexively tightening in the other boy's dark hair. Harry chuckled. "What are you feeling up to?" he asked, letting his hand slide a little lower. "Touch me," Draco whined. "No teasing this morning." He pulled Harry's head back with his hair and looked into his eyes letting, him see how needy he felt in that moment. Harry raised his eyebrows. "You got it," he said quickly, closing his hand around Draco's cock. "Yes," Draco hissed, his eyes closing and his hand tightening again. Harry pulled at Draco and scooted forward to kiss him deeply. "I love your cock, you know," he whispered, knowing how much it would get Draco off. Draco groaned, the words making said appendage harder and his body shudder. "Good," he said. "Should I fuck you with it?" Harry pulled a few more times and shuddered at Draco's words. "I think maybe you should," he said huskily, kissing Draco again. "Turn around, on your other side," Draco said, giving Harry's hair another tug and then untangling his fingers. "And what did you use for lube yesterday?" Harry nodded and turned over. He lay there for a second and then realised that Draco had asked a question. "Oh, erm, lotion," he said. "I don't know where it is though, but hurry up and fuck me!" "Oh, Gods," Draco moaned as Harrys arse brushed against his cock. "Harry, you just ordered me ." And he was rubbing his cock against the crevice of Harry's arse. Harry knew that he didn't want to fuck without lube. "No!" he said quickly. "No, stop! I meant hurry and find the lube." He perked his head up a bit and looked behind himself at Draco. Draco sighed in relief and then rolled to the floor, looking for the lotion. He found it under the bed. The sight of Harry waiting for him

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made him grin and reach for that beautiful arse. He rubbed his hand lovingly over the cheeks of Harry's rear and pushed him gently over until he was face down. Harry's eyes closed at Draco's touch. It felt nice to not have to do anything. He sighed, waiting eagerly for Draco to get started. "Lift your hips and spread your legs," Draco said, reaching for a pillow. When Harry'd lifted up, Draco slid it under him and knelt between his legs. Harry licked his lips and looked behind him once more before lying back down, eyes closed again. "Mmm, Draco," he sighed. "Hurry up, please." Smiling, Draco squeezed lotion into his hand and set the bottle aside, slicking his fingers. He slid his fingers into the crevice in front of him, seeking Harry's entrance. He found it and pressed in gently but firmly. "Mmmm," Harry let out, relaxing further. "You're amazing," he said, even though Draco hardly had a finger in yet. "I am going to fuck you hard, Harry," Draco said, his voice low and serious. "I am going to shove my cock so far inside you." He pulled back, working a second finger in. Harry perked up quite a bit at that. "Please do," he whined, pushing his arse up against Draco's fingers. Draco slicked his cock with his other hand, pushed forward and removed his fingers. He could feel the head of his cock against Harry's opening and gasped at the sensation. "Want this?" he asked. "Yesss," Harry hissed, pushing up more. "Please, yes!" If there was one thing that Harry loved about Draco, it was that voice he used during sex. He didn't want him to stop talking, ever. Draco grabbed both Harry's hips in his hands and pushed. "Fuck, yes!" he growled, and kept pushing as far as he could, gasping when he was fully in. Harry grasped the bedding and clutched at it hard. Pain shot up his spine, but oh fucking hell, there was pleasure too. Just the thought of Draco doing what he was doing made Harry want to come. "Ah! Draco!" Draco held still, trembling at the feeling of tight heat and the sound of Harry calling his name. His voice was hoarse and deep when he growled, "Gods, you feel so fucking good, Harry!"

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Harry's back arched at that. "Errgggh! Fuck me!" he yelled impatiently, frustrated. Draco would have done it anyway, but the command set his hips in motion before he even realised why. He pulled back and began thrusting. "Yes, oh, yes," he moaned, and it felt so impossibly good he thought he might cry. Harry bit his lip so hard he actually broke skin. God, it hurt, but fucking Merlin in a dress, it felt bloody fantastic! "Harder!" he demanded, trying to thrust his hips to get friction from the bed. "Fuck, Harry, you ..." Draco couldn't finish the sentence, his hips thrusting as fast and as hard as he could make them go. It almost hurt to be pounding against Harry like this, but he couldn't think, let alone stop it. Harry was screaming now, but he didn't want Draco to stop. He couldn't say anything anymore other than the word "yes" over and over and over again. "Yesyesyesyesyes!" He was sure his brain had exploded. Sweat dripped from his brow and Draco could barely take a breath. His long fingers gripped Harry's hips so tight he knew he was bruising him, but he couldn't let go. He pulled against Harry's hips, spreading his arse cheeks wider, and deepened his angle so that he was thrusting so far he could feel it to the root of his cock. Harry didn't think it could get any better than it already was, but then Draco went deeper. Fucking hell! He brushed Harry's prostate and Harry was openly sobbing. He felt so full. So full of Draco he thought he was going to die. Draco's body was drenched in sweat now, and his muscles were shuddering with the effort to keep up the pace. Harry was very, very close. He had no idea that anything was wrong. Just a little more, a little more, more, more, his brain was telling him. He whimpered, feeling the pressure building that told him he was going to come. Draco was gasping and he was getting dizzy again. "C-come," he managed to gasp, not knowing whether or not Harry could hear him. Harry didn't need to hear him. He came next moment so hard, his entire body felt numb for a second. There were black dots dancing in front of his eyes, and the expression on his face might've been comical had anyone been able to see it.

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Harry's orgasm clenched around Draco's cock, and he was coming too. Then he blacked out, collapsing forward onto Harry. Harry was still for a moment, not having realised what had happened. He frowned and squirmed a bit under Draco. His frown deepened when Draco did absolutely nothing. Harry pushed himself up with an enormous effort, wincing at the pain in his backside. Draco rolled off him like a rag doll, completely limp. "Draco?" Harry asked frantically, smacking him lightly on the cheek a few times. Draco lay there, still and breathing shallowly. Harry gulped, heavy guilt flooding him. "Draco, wake up!" he said, looking at Draco. He was startled by a knock at the door. He looked up from Draco's face at the sound of the knock. He was filled with utter dread when his command didn't work. He dove off the bed and grabbed his discarded robe, wrapping it around his hips hurriedly. He picked up his own shirt lying nearby and flung it over Draco's lower half. "Come in, hurry!" he yelled at the door. Madam Pomfrey opened the door, and came in, followed by a floating tray with breakfast and potions on it. "G'morning, dears," she started. "Time to get up ." She stopped suddenly at the look on Harry's face, and her attention turned quickly to the boy collapsed on the bed. "What happened?" she said, rushing to him. "He passed out again. I told him to wake up, but it didn't work," Harry told her with wide eyes, shaking slightly. He very much didn't want to say, 'He passed out because I made him fuck me too hard.' She pulled her wand and pointed it at Draco. "Ennervate!" Draco moaned, opening his eyes a bit. "Pass me that green vial, Harry," Pomfrey directed. Harry rushed over and did as he was told, watching Draco intently. Madam Pomfrey rolled Draco over, paying no attention to his state of undress. "Hold his head up, Harry," she said. Harry got back on the bed and pulled Draco's head into his lap so he could hold him up better. Draco moaned and tried to focus his eyes; the world was spinning again and he closed them quickly. Madam Pomfrey held the vial to his lips and poured it in. Draco gagged but still managed to swallow most of it, some trickling down his chin. He grimaced and shuddered at the awful taste.

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Harry winced at Draco's reaction, wiping the potion up with his bare hand. "Draco?" he asked, still scared. "Harry," Draco croaked, his voice not really working well. At least the dizziness seemed to have stopped. He opened his eyes and looked up into Harry's green, smiling weakly when he saw them. Madam Pomfrey shook her head, taking in the state of both boys and tsking. Draco was soaking wet and had started to shiver. She cast a quick Cleaning Charm on him and the soaked bed sheets, before pulling the covers up over him. "He is a sick boy," she said to Harry. "He needs to eat more before ... exerting himself unnecessarily." She flicked her wand and the breakfast tray settled on the bedside table. Harry flushed crimson and nodded. He couldn't ever remember being embarrassed so often in so little time. Draco had the sense to look a bit cowed as well, and sighed, leaning back against Harry. "I'm okay," he said, but it came out has a feeble whisper. Madam Pomfrey shook her head. "Behave, or we will have to send your friend back to the dorms," she warned them. She looked at Harry. "The Headmaster will be coming to visit you this morning," she explained, "so you aren't to go to classes yet." Harry nodded again, stroking Draco's hair now. Madam Pomfrey nodded and left the room, opening the door and leaving it that way on her way out. "I'm sorry, Draco," Harry said quietly. "I didn't know that that that would happen, that that was happening." Draco started to laugh, but it came out as a bit of a cough. He smiled at Harry, and then whispered, "Kiss me." Harry sighed and shook his head. He bent and kissed Draco upside down. "Mmm," Draco hummed against his lips, one hand coming up to tangle in Harry's hair. Harry started to kiss back eagerly, but then pulled away in shame. "No," he said. "No more. Eat, please." Draco smiled and dropped his hand and head back. "Is there any tea?" he whispered. Harry looked over to the side at the tray Pomfrey had brought in. There was indeed tea. He nodded. "Want me to make you some?" he asked.

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Draco nodded. "With milk and sugar." "Okay," Harry said, sliding himself gently from underneath Draco's head. He made Draco, and himself, some tea and brought both cups over. "Need to sit up," Draco said, rolling to his side and struggling to push himself up again. Harry frowned and set the cups back down before helping Draco sit up and propping him with pillows. He retrieved the tea again and handed Draco's to him. "I'm really, really sorry," he said, brows coming together. Draco shook his head, taking the tea from Harry. "Can't think of a better way to go." He smiled, sipping the tea. Harry just stared at his cup for a moment. "I'd never forgive myself," he said quietly. He felt like he had failed Draco in some small way. Draco huffed and then reached his hand out for Harry's. "Please, don't be like that," he said. Then he smirked. "But if it matters, it might help to always say please." Harry took Draco's hand and bit his lip, wincing at the slight pain there. "Yeah, okay," he said, finally bringing his tea up to sip it. He sighed. "Guess I'm gonna have to go to classes after Dumbledore talks to us," he said sadly. Draco looked down at his tea and sighed as well, still holding Harry's hand. "Up to eating?" Harry asked in a bit of a higher voice, trying to lighten the mood. Draco shrugged and sipped his tea. "We should get dressed," he said. "I don't fancy a visit from Dumbledore like this." "Eugh, me neither," Harry agreed, gulping the rest of his tea down. "I need to take a shower. Magical cleaning just isn't the same." Draco smirked. "Think we are safe to shower together?" Harry gave a small smile. "Yeah, because I don't think I can take anymore for at least a few hours, and you might keel over if you get another hard-on. Think Pomfrey'll let us if I say you need help washing?" Draco nodded, smiling and looking more cheerful. "I hope so, because I think I do. Is there porridge?" Harry laughed. "Yeah," he said, getting to his feet again. The

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robes fell off his hips, and he rushed over and shut the door. "Bloody woman's probably trying to get a peek," he said indignantly before coming back over to the bed bearing the whole tray. Draco added a lot of milk and sugar to his cereal, so that it was the consistency of soup. He sat sipping it and his tea, feeling better already. Harry picked up a muffin. "What d'you think Dumbledore'll want to tell us?" he asked, taking a bite. Draco frowned, setting down his porridge and looking at his arm. He only just realised that he had been naked in front of Pomfrey. He hoped she hadn't noticed his arm band. He looked over the side of the bed and retrieved his nightshirt, slipping it back over his head. "Probably coming to check on his favourite student," he said quietly. Harry scowled. "I resent that," he said. "Why don't you want him to see your arm?" Draco huffed and folded his hands in his lap. "Youre suggesting you are not his favourite?" "I don't think of it that way," Harry said, taking another bite of muffin. "Dumbledore doesn't play favourites, we're just ... there's just stuff between us, I guess." "He lets you break every rule in this place." Draco sneered. "Even now, you being here with me. Do you think anyone else could get away with that?" "Hey," Harry started angrily. "He let me stay here because you needed me, you prat. And he doesn't let me break rules. I just don't get caught." Draco leant back against the pillows, crossing his arms behind his head and watching Harry fume. If he'd had any energy left, the sight would've probably turned him on. He schooled his face carefully neutral. Harry narrowed his eyes slightly and stared at Draco for a moment. He sighed when Draco didn't say anything more. "I'll go ask Pomfrey about showering. Finish eating, or whatever." He got off the bed and stalked out of the room. Draco shook his head and got out of bed, searching for the bottoms of the nightclothes. He found them and slipped them on. He smirked when he realised that Harry had become so angry he had marched out of the room naked. Draco picked up Harry's trousers

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and held them, waiting. He knew Harry would be back for them pretty quick. Harry took about ten steps outside the room before he realised he wasn't wearing anything. He spun around quicker than lightning and ran back inside. His eyes landed on Draco holding his trousers up, and he marched over and snatched them, slightly pink. He pulled them on and left again, thankful that only Draco had witnessed it. Draco fell back on the bed, snickering. Flushed, angry and naked Harry was a delicious sight.

CHAPTER SIXTEEN

Gryffindor Paragon
Harry returned after a few minutes, looking a little cross. "It took some arguing, but she said she'll let us. She told me to make sure I tell you that she can hear everything in there." He rolled his eyes. Draco nodded solemnly and tried to keep up his cross look. But the side of his mouth began to twitch. Harry narrowed his eyes. "What?" he asked, crossing his arms. That just flat out did it! Draco dissolved into a fit of giggles, falling back on the bed. Harry's eyes narrowed further. "What's so funny?" he said loudly over Draco's laughing. Draco lay on his side, giggling. Harry's outburst just made it worse, and his sides hurt from laughing. Harry tutted, sighing, but he couldn't help the very small smile that graced his lips. "You're so weird," he said, shaking his head. Draco finally got a hold on himself, still breathing hard and smiling. "You have no idea." He smirked. Harry raised an eyebrow. "Shower?" he asked. "Please say yes, because I also have to piss really bad. Right now." Draco snickered again, but managed to pull himself upright. "Me too," he agreed. Harry narrowed his eyes one last time, but nodded, holding out his hand for Draco to take it. Draco did and pulled himself up, then used it to pull Harry to him, quickly wrapping his other arm around the boy and kissing him. Harry smiled against Draco's lips and pulled back. "What was that for?" he asked. Draco rolled his eyes and sighed. "Nothing in particular." He smirked. "Let's get that shower before the old man shows up." Harry nodded and led Draco out of the room, still grasping his hand. Draco allowed himself to be led to the infirmary shower. Once

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there, he stripped the night clothes and waited for Harry. Harry pulled his trousers off, but then went to the loo quickly before walking over to turn on one of the showers. He sighed as the warm water beat down on his skin. He looked over his shoulder. "C'mere," he said, holding out his hand. Draco came toward Harry, but frowned. "I have to go, too." Harry huffed. "Well, go then," he said. "Hurry up." He paused. "Oh, erm, please," he added with a smile. Draco sighed, now able to walk over and use the toilet. He liked having Harry tell him what to do, but he didn't like being forced to do it. He puzzled over that as he walked back to the shower and stepped under the spray with him. Harry smiled when Draco came back over to him. He was holding up a soapy flannel. "Want me to wash your back?" he asked. Draco nodded, still feeling sombre, but he smiled a bit and turned around. Harry pressed the cloth to Draco's skin, rubbing it in gentle, slow circles. "Something wrong?" he asked. "Mmm." Draco relaxed as Harry rubbed him. He sighed, letting his head fall back under the spray so that it soaked his white-blond hair. He hadn't cut it in a while, so it was getting long and a bit ragged. He hadn't paid much attention to his appearance lately. Harry chuckled a little and shook his head. He moved the cloth up to wash the back of Draco's neck. "This is nice," he said quietly. "Relaxing." "Yes." Draco sighed. "Is there shampoo?" "Of course," Harry said, reaching back and grabbing the bottle. "Want me to wash your hair?" "Gods, yes," Draco said, sighing, realising two things. One, that no one had done that for him since he was very small. And two, that he was tired again. Harry laughed a little and poured some shampoo into his hand. He reached up and started lathering Draco's hair, but it was sort of strange, as Draco was a bit taller than he was. Draco bent back a bit so Harry could reach and then realised that was uncomfortable. "Let me sit down," he said, and then sat down on the tile floor. Harry shrugged and got to his knees behind Draco. "Lean against

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me," he said, still working at Draco's scalp. Draco did as he was "told," not caring at that moment that he had no choice. Sometimes, it was good to just be free of making a decision. He relaxed back against Harry's legs and felt the other boy's fingers on his scalp. "Yours," he whispered. Harry smiled down at Draco. "Always," he said, like he had before. "I still can't believe this." He sighed. "What?" Draco asked softly, his head back against Harry's shoulder and his hands in his own lap. "This whole thing," Harry said, shaking wet hair out of his eyes. "This whole thing with you. I mean, did you ever honestly think we would end up together?" He smiled and shook his head. Draco didn't answer, closing his eyes and letting his head drop to his chest. Harry sighed and started his hands up again. "I'd never go back," he whispered. "Go back where?" Draco asked sleepily, lifting his head up to look back at Harry. "Back to how it was before," Harry said quietly, watching Draco. He scratched behind Draco's ears. "No, never going back," Draco said, feeling peaceful under Harry's touch. "Never, never, never," Harry whispered, kissing Draco's forehead. Draco leaned his head back farther, hoping Harry would kiss him on the lips this time. Harry smiled and kissed Draco gently, knowing it that was what he wanted. "I love you," he said very quietly against them. "Mmm," Draco murmured, closing his eyes again. Harry kissed him for a few more moments, but pulled away. He didn't know how long they sat there. Long enough for Draco's hair to be clean certainly, and then some. "Sleepy," Draco said, leaning against Harry's legs still. Harry sighed. "I wouldn't be surprised if Dumbledore's waiting out there for us," he said gently. "Bloody hell," Draco grumbled. "Suppose we need to get dressed then," he said, but didn't move from his place on the floor. Harry laughed. "I still haven't even washed yet," he said. "And

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you haven't either, only your back really, and your hair." "Be my guest," Draco said with a sigh. Harry shook his head. "You know," he said laughingly, "I can really tell that you're an only child, and that you've been spoilt beyond belief. You're going to have to move or something; I can't get to your entire body from here." "Tell me what to do, Harry," Draco said with a sigh. "I am too tired otherwise." "You want me to order you around?" Harry asked, looking down at Draco. Draco nodded. "Sometimes, like now." Harry shrugged. "Erm, sit up then, I suppose," he said, picking the washcloth back up. Draco snorted. "Add 'suppose' to the list of words that negate the command." Harry sighed. "Sit up," he said simply, wiggling his legs underneath Draco. Draco sat up, nodding as he did. Harry got to his feet. "Er, stand up," he told Draco, shrugging. This was odd. Draco stood, pushing himself up with his arms. He was tired and whatever magic allowed Harry control seemed to be helping him comply as well. Harry guided Draco back over by the shower, reached up, and made his hair stand straight by pulling on it; the shampoo made it stay that way. He laughed a bit and then pulled Draco into the warm spray, allowing his hair to fall flat again. Draco raised eyebrows at his lover and shook his head. "Having fun?" He smirked. Harry grinned. "A bit," he said, washing Draco's chest and stomach. "Just don't get carried away." He snorted. Harry snorted too. "Lift your arms up," he said, and he washed under them when Draco complied. After that, he could only make his way down. "Erm, do you want me to wash your bits?" he asked oddly. He'd already had quite a bit of experience with Draco's 'bits', but this was different somehow. Draco grinned. "From 'suck my cock' to 'bits.' Yes, I always want

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you to touch me." Harry laughed a little sheepishly, but nodded. He began to wash Draco's nether regions, being very gentle; it was still very odd. Draco moaned and his cock stirred a bit but didn't get hard, sated for the moment. He chuckled. "None of that now," Harry said, sounding like a father chastising a child. "Do you want me to wash, er, down there too?" he asked, once he was done. "I can wash myself if you prefer," Draco smirked, "but I am perfectly happy to have you do it." Harry flushed a little. "Er, it would be sort of ... odd ..." he said. He didn't know why he felt this way. He'd already licked down there, but that had been different. Draco shook his head, laughing. "You are modest now? After all that?" Harry winced. "It's not different to you?" he asked, eyebrows slightly raised. "I mean, I'll do it, but I don't want you to feel weird or anything ...." "I don't think there is a part of me that you haven't touched, most of which you have licked, bitten and sucked," Draco answered, still chuckling. "Am I supposed to be embarrassed to have you wash me?" Harry shrugged, still a little embarrassed. "I don't know," he said, and then he reached behind Draco and did it quickly. Draco shook his head, feeling more awake just from watching Harry blush and squirm. Amazing how that always worked for him. He grinned and reached for the flannel. "Your turn." Harry raised his eyebrows. He hadn't been expecting Draco to want to wash him. He handed the cloth over. Draco smiled, lathering soap into the cloth and turning to Harry. He started on his neck and began working his way down Harry's back. Harry rolled his shoulders. He hadn't realised how tense he'd been. He sighed happily. Draco massaged and rubbed Harry's shoulders and then his shoulder blade area, then down to the small of his back. He enjoyed the small sighs the other boy was making. Then he began to wash that lovely tight arse. "Spread your legs," he whispered.

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Harry turned slightly red again, but under the water one couldn't tell. He did as Draco said, bracing himself on the wall with both arms held out in front of him. Draco laid the cloth over his fingers like an impromptu glove and began washing the crack of Harry's arse, working slowly down to the area right behind his balls. Why did Draco have to do everything so sexily? Why? Slow and sexy. That was the way he talked, walked, everything. Harry resisted a moan, and his cock showed the tiniest bit of interest, but didn't do much of anything really. "Gods, I wish I could fuck you like this," Draco whispered pressing against Harry from behind. "Oh, God, Draco, don't," Harry said. "Please," he added. He squeezed his eyes shut. Pomfrey probably hadn't been lying about being able to hear them, and he knew they shouldn't do this. Draco slowly slid the cloth back up. "Don't what, Harry? I don't think that command was very specific. So I guess it means I can't fuck you." He laid one hand on Harry's hip and then brought the cloth around to wash Harry's cock. Harry gasped, his cock showing definite interest now. "Oh, fuck, Draco, you're doing this on purpose," he whined. "I am just washing your gorgeous cock," Draco whispered against Harry's ear as he slid the cloth down to Harry's balls. "Merlin, how can you possibly want to fuck?" Harry asked, not being able to resist pressing back against Draco. He was being quite the hypocrite with that question. "How could I not want you, Harry?" Draco continued to whisper, his cloth-covered hand stroking Harry's cock. "You are, and have always been, the sexiest person I have ever met. And now I belong to you. I can feel your magic in my body." "Fuck," Harry let out at Draco's words. How was his cock getting hard? HOW? "We can't! We can't!" he whined, grinding harder against Draco as he did. Draco was fisting Harry's growing erection with the soft cloth, still holding himself against Harry's back. He wasn't hard, but he was excited. He could feel the energy of Harry's arousal. "Shh," he whispered. "I am going to make you come again, Harry." Harry didn't know if he could keep quiet. So much for not getting

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hard for another few hours. He thrust into Draco's hand, cock hardening fully. He was making small squeaking noises now. "You aren't so shy now, are you?" Draco purred against him. "You wouldn't have any trouble touching or even tonguing my arse now, would you? You love this. You love me saying these things to you while I fist your cock." Harry rested his forehead against the wall now. He felt weak in the knees at Draco's words. He'd never heard something so hot in his life. "Don't stop, please," he panted, referring to Draco's flying hand and his purring voice. "You could clean my hole with your tongue now and not even blush, you are so turned on," Draco's voice continued as he whispered in Harry's ear, licking the edge as he did. "Harry Potter, Gryffindor paragon, is a wanton thing, aren't you?" Harry moaned. He was so turned on, he felt like he was going to pass out. "Draco, oh, Draco, please," he groaned. He couldn't even shout now. He couldn't do anything but stand there. "Answer me, Harry. You could do all that and more, couldn't you?" Draco said, his hand moving faster, the friction of the soft cloth increasing. "Yes," Harry whispered, picturing Draco's hot, tight opening in front of him, his long, thick cock, his pale skin, his hard nipples, fuck everything about him. He groaned again. "You are going to come from my voice and my hands on you," Draco said. He slid the hand on Harry's hip and slipped his fingers down Harry's crevice again until he found his tight hole and then began circling it with the pad of his finger. Harry could hardly breathe. "Yes," he whispered, barely being heard against the rushing water. He was getting so close now. "You are going to come when I fuck you with this finger, Harry," Draco said and then pushed a long finger in quickly. Harry cried out and clawed at the wall. "Close," he gasped, suddenly able to move again. He pushed back against Draco's hand, making that long finger go deeper. He imagined that it was Draco's cock instead and very, very nearly came at that. "Yes, next time it will be my cock in your arse, fucking you against the wall," Draco growled, his finger twisting to rub Harry's prostate. "Come for me, Harry."

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That undid him. Harry came in white-hot spurts that painted the wall in front of him. It felt like it would never stop. He didn't even make a sound when he came except for a single gasp. His eyes drooped and he actually began to slip sideways, catching himself just in time. Draco hadn't used his tongue, or his cock, or his mouth so to speak to make Harry come, and Harry had come harder than he could ever remember. Draco was very talented. Draco pressed Harry to the wall with his body, holding him in place. "Fuck, yes! That's it, and when we go talk to the old man, you will think about the fact that he knows that Draco Malfoy is fucking his Golden Boy. That should get you hard, too." Draco kissed his cheek and nibbled at his ear while Harry trembled with the aftermath of his orgasm. Harry stayed pressed against the wall for a few minutes, eyes closed, breathing very heavily. "Draco," he managed to croak out finally, "you I never " He was still breathing heavily and couldn't even form a coherent sentence. Draco's finger slid out of Harry's arse, and he let go of the flannel and his cock too, and pulled Harry back under the spray of the shower. "We never what, Harry?" he whispered still holding him up. Harry turned around slowly. "I don't even know," he said, bringing his arms up to wrap around Draco's neck. He pulled him down for a kiss. "I've never come that hard," he finally said after the minute snog. Draco chuckled, a deep, happy sound. "Maybe we should get dressed and go see what the Headmaster wants." Harry sighed and pressed his face against Draco's neck. "I suppose we should," he said, still holding the other boy tightly. "Ready?" he asked, stroking Harry's hair and kissing the top of his head. Harry sighed again and nodded, releasing Draco. He rinsed off and washed his hair real quick before he turned off the water. Draco handed him a towel and began drying himself off quickly. "Do I have to wear nightclothes still?" Harry shrugged. "Seems pointless to take a shower and put dirty clothes on," he said, taking the towel and flipping upside down to dry his hair. "House-elves probably brought some new ones." Harry had spent more time in the hospital wing than any other student at

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Hogwarts, and had never had to use the same clothes the next morning. Draco sighed. "Well, I can't walk around naked." "You won't have to, I'm sure," Harry said with a laugh, walking over to the sinks. He picked up his toothbrush that he had known would be there. "I think house-elves bring stuff when you're in here," he said holding up the toothbrush. Draco looked around and found a folded set of his own nightclothes. "Why do they make us wear nightclothes in here?" Harry shrugged. "I don't have to wear nightclothes," he said, pointing to his own clean Gryffindor school uniform. "They make me when I'm a patient though. More comfortable, maybe?" Draco huffed and put the nightclothes on anyway. He then brushed and combed his hair. Harry didn't even bother with his hair. He simply ruffled it with his hand and then brushed his teeth, not getting dressed until he was done with that. Draco smirked watching Harry naked and comfortable. "Do you like my hair?" Harry asked, frowning while he was fixing his tie in the mirror. He finished with the tie and reached up to try and make his hair do something besides stand up all over. Draco walked up behind Harry, looking over his shoulder, and reached both hands up, burying his fingers into Harry's thick hair. "Always thought the just-shagged look suits you," he purred. Harry raised an eyebrow and grinned. "The 'just-shagged look'?" he asked. He laughed. "I always thought it looked like I just rolled out of bed and was too lazy to try and comb it." Draco raised an eyebrow and smirked. "I like my interpretation better. Ready?" Harry sighed and nodded, walking over to the door and opening it for Draco. He made a sweeping gesture like Draco had done on that first night in the Room of Requirement. Draco smiled and strode through the door, winking at Harry as he passed him. Harry followed him, wondering how such a small thing could still manage to make his heart leap.

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

Sidestepping
Harry led the way back, pausing to look in the main room to see if Dumbledore was there, but he wasn't. He shrugged at Draco and kept walking until he had reached the door. When he opened it, it was to see a very different room than the one he remembered leaving earlier. The bed was gone and in its place were three comfortable looking armchairs and a coffee table. Two chairs sat on one side of the table and in the other chair sat Dumbledore. "Ah," he said upon seeing Harry and Draco. "Happy to see you're both finished with your showers," he said, standing. Draco took a sharp breath and froze behind Harry. He had an urge to turn and flee, but he held steady. He schooled his features to neutral and waited. Harry approached a bit warily. "Good morning, Professor," he said. Yes, quite," Dumbledore said cheerfully. "Please, take a seat. We have much to discuss." Harry walked forward, suddenly feeling ashamed that he was probably taking up valuable Horcrux hunting time. Draco stood in the doorway, leaning on the frame. Harry sat in one of the empty chairs and then noticed that Draco hadn't followed him over. He frowned at him. Dumbledore looked over at Draco too. "Draco?" he asked. "Poppy has told me of your exhaustion. While you may certainly stand, it might be easier for you to sit down. " Draco's arms were crossed over his chest and he sighed. He dropped his arms, pushed off from the frame and strolled into the room, looking every bit the Slytherin Prince of reputation. He sat gracefully in the open chair and leaned back. Harry gave a tiny roll of his eyes and looked back at Dumbledore, waiting for him to speak.

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"Tea, boys?" Dumbledore asked, and with a wave of his wand, a set appeared out of thin air. "Erm, sure," Harry said, still feeling guilty. Draco nodded. "Sure," he said as well. Dumbledore poured them each a cup, leaving it up to them to add what they wanted. "You are both intelligent young wizards; I assume you do know why I'm here?" he asked when they were all settled in. Draco put sugar in both cups and then added milk to his own. He pushed the other cup toward Harry but didn't look up at him. He settled back in his seat, sipping tea, but not saying anything. Harry averted his eyes and nodded, taking a sip of tea. Dumbledore looked at Draco, pausing for a second. "I know of the bonding," he said. Harry flushed. "No need to explain the details, I have already spoken to Professor Snape about it." He eyed both boys, perhaps a little more sternly than before. Harry sipped his tea to refrain from speaking just yet. Draco gave the old man his best look of cool disdain and sipped his tea. He was a Malfoy, he knew how to hide his feelings. "Professor Snape has told me that the bond has allowed you, Harry, to be able to order you, Draco, to do things. Is this true?" Harry looked up at Dumbledore and nodded. "Yes," he said quietly. Dumbledore nodded as well. "I would think it very beneficial if I could see an example." Harry looked at Draco. Draco frowned, his pulse speeding up. He glanced at Harry and then away. Harry gave a tiny shrug. "Erm, Draco, clap your hands," he said, using the same example he had shown to Hermione. "Bloody hell!" Draco shouted as he tried unsuccessfully to put the teacup down before he clapped his hands, dumping the tea and cup in his lap. His hands were clapping, so he couldn't even push himself out of the chair. Harry had forgotten that Draco had been holding tea, and he had said the first thing that had come to mind. He jumped in his chair at

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Draco's outburst and turned even redder when he saw what he had done. "Stop, stop!" he said quickly. At least Dumbledore knew it was the real thing now; Draco would not willingly have dumped hot tea in his own lap. Draco scowled, pushing himself out of the chair, causing the cup to fall to the floor. He was shaking with anger and the shock of having hot tea splashed on his legs. He was lucky he had managed to avoid it landing higher. "I am not a fucking puppet, and I don't appreciate being used like one!" he yelled, and started for the door. Harry jumped out of his chair and ran after him. "No, wait!" he yelled, forgetting that that would make Draco have to wait and, therefore, probably angrier. Draco stopped in place, 'waiting. He turned his head, looking angrily over his shoulder. "Yes?" he said in a voice full of rage. Harry was actually a bit frightened by Draco's voice, not because he was afraid of him, but because that wasn't a voice he had heard from Draco before, only from Malfoy. "Please wait," he said, changing his wording so that Draco could move again. Draco turned his head away and looked for a moment like he would continue out the door. He dropped his head to his chest, breathing hard and trying to get himself under control. The Headmaster was frowning at the scene in front of him. "I will ask you both to please take your seats again," he said sternly. "While I will not prevent you from leaving, Mr Malfoy, it is imperative that I speak to both of you. If you would be so gracious as to sit with us now, it will negate the need for me to return later when you might have other activities that need attending to." Harry didn't move. He just looked from Draco to Dumbledore. Without turning, Draco said, "May I have my wand?" Harry frowned deeper. Why would he ask that? Dumbledore nodded. "Madam Pomfrey gave it to me to give to you," he said, pulling the wand from his robes. Draco didn't turn, but held his hand up and Summoned the wand from where he stood. It flew to his hand, and then he used it to do a Cleaning and Drying Spell on his soaked silk pyjamas before turning back around. He crossed his arms across his chest and frowned at Dumbledore, not looking directly at Harry. "I do not appreciate being used," he said with quiet anger and dignity.

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"I apologise," said Dumbledore sincerely. "I was merely trying to see what the effects of the bond are, and I'm sure that Harry did not mean for that to happen. Please, take your seats." Harry still didn't move. If Draco left, he was going to run after him. Draco took a deep breath and glanced at Harry who was halfway between himself and the chairs. He nodded briefly and then walked carefully back to the chair, using the charm again to clean the seat and another to remove the cup before sitting back down. Harry sighed shakily and followed Draco to take his seat again too. He wanted nothing more than to reach over and hold Draco's hand, but he didn't. "Thank you," Dumbledore said, staring at them both again before turning to Draco. "Professor Snape has also told me that you hadn't been eating and had collapsed. He said that the bond is what kept you alive, as Harry had told you that you couldn't die. Is that correct?" "Apparently," Draco said, voice cold. "Very well," Dumbledore said, completely unaffected by Draco. "If that is true, then you have both performed immensely powerful magic. Bonds that can keep a person alive are very, very rare. I believe that the reason it is so strong is because the bond was performed in the Room of Requirement. The room must have sensed the need." Draco nodded, having already considered that. "The bond has been quite a saviour, it seems," Dumbledore continued. "But it is also dangerous for you to be relying on Harry so much. Madam Pomfrey has also told me of the fit you had last night, needing Harry sexually." Harry flushed crimson and glanced at Draco again. Draco gritted his teeth, taking a deep breath before speaking. "We do not remember the exact words of the binding promise. It seems to have ... aspects ... that we don't understand." "Yes, I am aware." said Dumbledore. "This is why Professor Snape and I think it would be best for the both of you if the bond were removed, although how one would go about that is not entirely clear." "Erm, Hermione knows too, sir," Harry said. "And by now, I

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suppose, Ron does as well." Dumbledore nodded. "Yes, I thought they might." Harry didn't know what to think about the bond being removed. Without it, he wouldn't be able to order him to live if Draco decided to stop eating again. He frowned at Dumbledore and then looked at Draco to see his reaction. Draco's eyes narrowed, grey eyes flaring with anger and his jaw clenched. "You ... have ... no ... right," he said slowly and fiercely, his hands gripping the arms of his chair. Harry was very surprised at Draco's reaction. Hadn't he just been yelling about being treated like a puppet? "Draco," he said, placing a hand over one of Draco's. Dumbledore frowned. "I must admit that your reaction, Draco, is not one that I had anticipated. You wish the bond removed, do you not?" he asked seriously, and it was as if he were testing Draco or something. "You didn't ask," Draco said in that same cold, quiet voice. He trembled at Harry's touch, but didn't turn to him, not trusting himself if he did. "You are correct, I did not," Dumbledore said, eyeing Draco with a strange look in his eye. "An old man's assumptions. You must both, however, realise the problems this causes. You haven't been apart for long periods of time since the bonding, so we do not know if a problem will present itself when you are. There are many things we dont know. There is also the issue of satisfying the more intimate requirements of the bond, something which, I might add, is highly against school rules." Harry squeezed Draco's hand and looked into Dumbledore's eyes. He was getting the funny feeling that the man knew something else that he wasn't mentioning. Draco's cold expression did not change. "I have noticed that school rules seem to have been flexible in the past, when the need arose." Once again, Professor Dumbledore was not fazed. "Obviously, the need has arisen once more," he said simply. "Sir, if we don't want it removed ... what then?" Harry asked. Dumbledore sighed. "Well, Harry, I'm not even sure that it can be removed in the first place," he said. "Every binding promise is

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different. In a bond of this nature I believe you would both have to be willing for it to be removed. However, I must stress that allowing it to remain in place may present significant danger." Harry thought he heard a bit of emphasis on that last word. Draco snorted, shaking his head. Dumbledore seemed to stare intently at Draco for a long moment. He finally looked away, seeming tired. "Arrangements will have to be made, at least until we know more about the bond," he said. "I ask that neither of you take this lightly. It may seem simple, but magic that powerful is not to be fooled with. Your safety is of great importance to me." Harry could sense that the meeting was about to come to a close. He still wanted Draco to tell Professor Dumbledore about the serpent, but he couldn't make him ... well, he could, but he had no intention of doing that. It felt like there was something being carefully avoided. Draco would obviously steer away from anything to do with Voldemort, but it felt like Dumbledore was skirting it too. Harry wasn't really sure what to do. Draco was angry and confused. He wanted the old man to leave, so he sat quietly. He knew Dumbledore was not telling them everything and that inclined him to trust him even less. Harry wasn't sure what to make of all of this. He felt like the whole meeting had been pointless. So the bond was strong? So what? It was possibly dangerous; Harry had assumed that. It was breaking school rules; Harry certainly already knew that. He felt like the real purpose of the meeting hadn't been addressed. "Arrangements will have to be made with your Heads of Houses. I myself am very busy at the moment." He observed the boys for a moment. "I suppose that's all there is right now," he said. Draco stood and looked at Dumbledore. "You are going to leave me with your Golden Boy?" Harry's eyes widened, and he stared up at Draco. Dumbledore stared at Draco too, his eyes gleaming. "Are you giving me a reason not to, Draco?" he asked very seriously, but it also sounded like he was almost pleading. "I am his," was all Draco answered. Dumbledore sighed. "Yes, at the moment, I suppose you are," he

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said, standing. He looked about the room. "I'll leave you here. Harry, you should get ready for your afternoon classes; I'm sure you'll already have quite a bit of catching up to do. And Draco, you should get some rest." He walked over to the door and paused again, turning back. "I'll tell Poppy to put the window back in this room; it'll certainly brighten things up. It was removed when Katie Bell was placed here." And with that, he turned back around and left. Draco tried not to wince at the mention of Bell but looked away as if he was considering the window. He remained standing there while Dumbledore left.

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

To Be Apart
Harry was left staring after Dumbledore as confused as ever. He received quite a start when everything in the room returned to its original state. Instead of sitting on the chair, he suddenly found himself on his back in bed. He didn't move when it happened, just stared up at the ceiling for a moment. "What the bloody hell was that about?" he asked after a moment. Draco stood with his back to Harry. He didn't answer. He hadn't moved since he'd made his declaration. Harry sat up, frowning. "Draco?" he asked. Draco began to tremble, his control slipping. Harry continued to frown, standing up from the bed. He came up behind Draco and wrapped his arms around his waist, hugging him tight and hoping that he wasn't angry with him. Draco gasped and continued to shudder as emotions, held in check while Dumbledore was present, seemed to ripple through him. Harry didn't know what was wrong, but he had known that Draco had been holding back the entire time Dumbledore had been in the room. Tears were running down Draco's cheeks again. Damn, but every time he turned around these days he seemed to be crying. He shook his head. "Would you let them?" he asked quietly. Harry didn't answer for a moment. "Look at me," he said quietly. Draco turned his head to look over his shoulder at the other boy. He gritted his teeth as he stared into those green eyes. "No," Harry said, holding Draco tightly. "Not if it means so much to you. You're mine for how long?" "Always," Draco whispered, shaking. "Always," Harry repeated. He couldn't really believe how much Draco cared about their promise. He hadn't known. Draco turned in Harry's arms so that he could face him. "We need to talk," he said quietly, his voice still thick with emotion.

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Harry looked at Draco. Those weren't exactly the most comforting words, but he nodded. Draco took Harry's hand and led him back over to sit on the bed. Draco sat with his legs folded and looked down, trying to compose his thoughts. Harry sat very close to Draco, trying to comfort him with his nearness. "What is it?" he asked. "They are worried that I am endangering you," Draco said. "I don't want that." Harry glared slightly. "I know you're not," he said. "Sod them all to hell." "They could be right," Draco whispered. "We don't know the extent of what we promised." "But it seems like you're the only one affected by it," Harry said. "How is that a danger to me?" Draco looked away. "Can you remember what you said that night?" Harry would've laughed if the mood had been different. He settled for an incredulous, "No." Draco smiled. "I remember parts but not all." He reached a hand out to lie along Harry's cheek. "I remember something about sex and food." Harry raised an eyebrow and shook his head. "I remember sex all right ... everything else is kind of blurry ... even the sex is a bit blurry." Draco's cheeks coloured and he smirked. "That part is pretty clear for me." Harry smiled just a little bit smugly. "I might remember a few things ..." he said uncertainly. Draco smiled, lying back on the bed. "To be safe, it would help if we could reconstruct what happened. When I die, I don't want this to damage you." Harry frowned, but then nodded. "Even though I don't plan on letting you die," he said, lying down next to Draco. He sighed. "How are we going to remember ...?" Draco put his arm around Harry, drawing him close. He was relaxing now after the tension of earlier. Harry just lay there for a few moments, trying to remember. "I

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know something we can do," he said. "What?" Draco asked, eyebrows raised. Harry looked sideways at him. "We could use Dumbledore's Pensieve," he suggested. Draco's eyebrows shot up higher. "You have access to a Pensieve? That would be helpful." He smiled, thinking about viewing the memory. "And hot." Harry grinned. "Maybe just a bit," he said, and then he made a face. "As long as Dumbledore doesn't watch it with us." "Eugh!" Draco grimaced, shuddering. Harry laughed at him. "Well, I guess that's what we'll do then. I'm a bit surprised Dumbledore didn't ask that actually . Must have a lot on his mind ..." "Will he let us use it without him?" Draco asked suspiciously. Harry shrugged. "He'll probably leave the room for a moment while we watch it," he said. "A moment?" Draco asked. "I think that would be ... awkward." Harry laughed. "You think it would be awkward because you'd want to jump me afterwards." Draco grinned. "You could watch us do that and not want to fuck me again?" Harry grinned again. "Probably not," he said. "But I doubt Dumbledore will just let us have his office to watch the memory and then have a quick shag." Draco was trying to concentrate on the magical aspects of the conversation, but the image of shagging Harry in Dumbledore's office was very distracting. He shook his head to clear it. "I think one of us would have to view, and speak what they heard, while the other took notes." "We couldn't both watch it?" Harry asked, even though he knew Draco's suggestion would probably be the most effective. "Oh, Gods, that sounds great." Draco grinned. "But we need someone to stay clear to write down what the 'binding promise' contains." Harry sighed. "Yeah, I guess," he said. He raised an eyebrow and looked at Draco. "Who gets to watch?" Draco laughed, shaking his head. "If the person watching repeats the words ... what do you think would happen if you repeated those

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words to me?" Harry pouted again and huffed. "Oh, fine," he said. "You can watch it then." He was still for a moment. "I wonder what would happen if we both went into the memory ." Draco had gone quiet, frowning. "We may have a problem." Harry raised an eyebrow. "What?" he asked. "I don't know how I will respond to memory you," Draco said quietly. "Is it just you now, or would the binding spell trigger a response to the Pensieve you?" Harry frowned. "You probably only respond to the real me ... but we can't be sure .... I guess we'll just have to wait and see. When do you want to do it?" "Soon," Draco replied, relaxing back again. "But I need rest right now, and the old man said you have to attend classes." Harry frowned. "Yeah," he said, sitting up again. He rolled so that his arms were on either side of Draco's shoulders and his knees were on either side of his legs. He looked down at him. "I'll see you later," he said, giving Draco a dozen chaste kisses on the lips. Draco wrapped his arms around Harry, groaning at the suggestive position. He kissed back, heading for very unchaste. Harry laughed. "I really do have to go," he said reluctantly. "Harry Potter is a tease," Draco said with a sigh, falling back against the pillows and smirking. Harry smiled. "I can't help it," he said, climbing off Draco. He got off the bed, too. "I guess I'll see you later," he said. Draco frowned and took a deep breath, hands clenched. Harry walked back over to the bed. "It'll be okay, Draco," he said, smoothing his hair. "I'll be back in a few hours, and when I do come back, you'll be all nice and rested and ready for me," he said suggestively, trying to make the mood light before he left. Draco smiled weakly. "I believe you," he answered. "I just ..." He shrugged. "You go. I need my beauty sleep," he tried to joke back. Harry smiled and stood up again. "A few hours," he repeated once he'd reached the door. He left the room then, not letting Draco see his grimace as he did. The entire way to class was torture. Harry had to force himself to keep going, and almost turned back at least three times. He couldn't

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stand not being with Draco. It was a bit strange. Hermione rushed up to him when he met her outside the door to Transfiguration, leaving Ron hovering awkwardly behind her. "Harry," she said anxiously, holding the sleeve of his robes, "are you okay?" Harry smiled. "Yeah, I'm okay. Draco's fine too for now." Hermione nodded, giving just the tiniest bit of a frown at the name Draco. She turned her head to Ron and gave him a look, but he simply scowled and leaned back against the wall. Harry glared at Ron, but otherwise didn't acknowledge him. Perhaps Harry was a bit to blame since he had delivered the news of his and Draco's relationship in a rather ... blunt ... way, but Ron was still being an arse. "I tried to talk to him," Hermione said turning back to Harry. "But he's he says he can't really understand why you well, you know ...." Harry nodded and rolled his eyes. "He can be a git if he wants. What do I care?" Hermione gave a big sigh. "Why do you two always have to be so " She put her hands up and closed her eyes. "No, never mind." She looked up at Harry now and gripped his sleeve a little tighter. "Harry, to be completely honest I don't understand any of this either." Harry frowned. He didn't even understand it. "I can't explain it, Hermione," he said, pained expression in place. "It didn't take any time, it just happened. I just felt it." Hermione was frowning at him. "Harry, how did you even what happened?" Harry sighed. "Can we talk about this later? I still don't think it's a good idea for this whole thing to get out if Voldemort gets wind of it ." Hermione nodded again. The bell rang then, and Harry followed Hermione into the classroom and sat next to her. Normally, Ron would've sat next to Harry, but he chose the seat next to Hermione. Harry's mood only worsened. As the class went on and they were finally left to begin the practical part, a few other people came to ask Harry where he'd been. Unable to come up with anything else, Harry told them all that he'd

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had a sudden bad bout of flu. It would likely be a bit of a problem later, since Harry intended to spend as much time with Draco as he could. "You mind explaining things to me a bit better now?" Hermione asked, turning a pillow into a rabbit and back. Harry didn't even bother with his pillow. "I suppose," he said, looking around him quickly. The only person in close distance was Ron, and Harry didn't care if he listened or not. He told Hermione about Draco kissing him in the bathroom, and about how he had followed him into the Room of Requirement later on. He told her how Draco had actually invited Harry inside the room, and that there had been a couch and even tea. He told her about how their second kiss had happened and how it had simply developed instantly from that moment. "Actually, now that I think of it," Harry said, scratching the back of his neck, "I never intended the kiss to get so out of hand. It was like I kissed him and I immediately needed him. Merlin, it doesn't matter how it started, I just know where I'm at now and that I don't want to leave there, ever. It sounds mad, I know. He's Draco Malfoy, his father's a convicted Death Eater, he's got a mission from Voldemort, and I've hated him for six years, but " he sighed, "none of that matters anymore . Like I said, I can't explain it." Ron snorted humourlessly when Harry finished. Harry looked down the table at him. "Something you want to say?" he asked angrily. "Harry, you're fucking daft," Ron said, leaning in past Hermione so that he could be right in Harry's face. "It's Malfoy! Ever think maybe he's just fucking around with you?" Harry glared. "I know he's not," he said, voice deadly slow and quiet. "Yeah, well, let's see what you say when you're looking down the end of You-Know-Who's wand when Malfoy hands you over to him." Harry very nearly jumped out of his seat and attacked Ron, but he didn't. "Do you think I'm an idiot, Ron?" he asked almost too loudly. "Do you think I'd be doing this if I thought he was going to do something to me or or or something like that!" "That's just because you're shagging him, right?" Ron asked viciously. "Which is disgusting, by the way."

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Harry's hands began shaking. "It's not you who's fucking a bloke! Why do you care who I fuck! Fucking mind your own business, Ron!" Harry was surprised that he was managing not to shout. "Fine, I will!" Ron said angrily. "Fuck him all the way to your death for all I care!" He then got to his feet and marched over to sit with Neville, Seamus and Dean. Harry was still shaking. He leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes. Hermione grasped his sleeve again. "Oh, Harry," she said. He could tell she was crying, but he didn't respond. It took a few minutes to calm down, but Harry finally did. He reached for his wand like nothing had happened and Transfigured the pillow in front of him into a rabbit with white-blond fur. He sighed and shook his head. The rest of Harry's day had been just as wonderful as that first class. He couldn't wait to get back up to the infirmary and pretend like there was one else in the world but him and Draco. When classes were finally over, he made his way as fast as he could. He walked straight in and didn't even tell Madam Pomfrey he was there. He went over to Draco's door and pushed it open. The room was quiet. A tray of food was on the nightstand beside the bed, though it didn't look like much had been eaten. And Draco was curled into a ball, eyes closed and body unmoving. Harry sighed; just the sight of Draco took a weight off his chest. He dropped his bag on the floor and crept over to the bed, crawling in beside Draco. Despite the nightclothes and the bedding, Draco's skin was cold and he was shivering. Harry had been expecting Draco to be nice and warm and for him to sleepily greet him. He frowned and sat up. "Draco?" he asked worriedly, shaking him a bit. Draco was still breathing but he didn't respond to Harry's voice or touch. Harry groaned. "Draco, wake up," he said in a pained voice, praying that that was all it would take. Draco groaned, shivering increasing. The room was warm, especially with the window that had been added. Harry bent low, close to Draco's face. "What's wrong?" he asked

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anxiously, wanting to pull Draco to him and hug him to make the shivering stop, but also wondering if that would hurt him. Draco turned his face toward Harry's breath, breathing it in. "Harry," he whispered. "Need Harry." Harry frowned. "I'm right here," he said confusedly, but then he remembered the last time Draco had said those words and what they had meant. "Draco, do you need me ... inside?" "Yes," Draco breathed, still unable to do anything more. He felt cold and empty. Harry nodded. "Okay, I'm here," he said, kissing Draco. He got up from the bed and removed all his clothes quickly. His head spun with the fact that Draco needed him this way, literally needed him. He wasn't hard yet, he couldn't be, but he moved back on the bed and kissed Draco again, moving his hands to pull off Draco's trousers as he did. Draco had no strength to help. He lay passively and moaning under Harry's touch. Harry pulled them off quickly, whispered, "It's okay, I'm here," over and over again. He Summoned the lotion and prepared Draco quickly and then worked furiously at his half-hard cock for a minute. He crawled into position and kissed Draco again. "Ready, love?" "Yes," Draco whispered, feeling Harry pressed against his back and wishing he could do something. Harry pushed halfway in and bit his lip, letting his eyes fall shut. He gave Draco a moment to adjust and then pushed in fully. He wanted to get this over with quickly. He didn't like it much when Draco wasn't able to move or hardly even speak. Draco moaned louder now, his body beginning to warm to Harry's touch. "Please, Harry," he begged. Harry sighed. That was a little more like it. He went a bit faster, but was still gentle. Draco came to consciousness with Harry inside him, his whole body seeming to wake as the waves of the other boy's magic flowed through him. "Harry," he gasped, the sensation of being fucked like this both painful and needed. "I'm here," Harry told Draco, pushing in and out. He pulled Draco up a bit by his hips to make it easier on both of them. "Yours," Draco gasped, pain starting to turn to pleasure as his

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own cock began to harden. "Always," was Harry's automatic response. He could feel Draco beginning to stir beneath him. He went faster, wanting Draco to just do something. Draco moaned now, beginning to thrust back against Harry. "Yes, please," he gasped, hands gripping the sheets. Harry's moan now almost sounded like one of relief as Draco began to move. He draped himself over Draco's back and let his eyes close. "I'm here," he whispered. "Yes, here, inside me," Draco gasped, reaching a hand back to tangle in Harry's hair. "Always will be; always," Harry panted. "You're mine." He was moving a bit faster now, a bit harder. "Yes, always inside me," Draco gasped. "Always yours." He was trembling with the power of it all. He turned his face, looking over his shoulder to see his lover. Harry looked up and met Draco's eyes. God, he was so beautiful. He leaned forward and kissed him gently. Draco kissed him back eagerly, his grey eyes shining as he gazed into Harry's. Harry slowly let his tongue out to meet with Draco's inside his mouth. He nipped at his lips. "Mmm," Draco's hummed, his own tongue caressing Harry's. He reached his hand down to his own cock and began fisting it in time with Harry's thrusts. Harry was panting now, and pulled away from the kiss, his head dropping onto Draco's shoulder. "I love you," he mouthed along the other boy's skin. "I love you." "Yes," Draco hissed, his head falling back against Harry's shoulder. His hand was working faster on his cock, and he knew that he was getting close. "Come inside me," he begged. Harry's moan was pitiful now. "Draco," he let out in a strangled voice as he did just as Draco asked, coming inside him. Draco gasped as Harry came, his magic flooding him with warmth. He fisted himself for a minute longer before coming in a quiet strangled sound and then relaxing against Harry. He breathed for a bit, enjoying the warmth and comfort of Harry pressed against and inside him.

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Harry rolled off Draco slowly to lay on his back next to him, eyes closed as he breathed deeply. "You all right?" he asked, not opening his eyes. Draco turned and pressed himself against Harry's side, his head on Harry's chest. "Yes," he answered quietly, thinking. "Something went wrong, didn't it?" Harry absentmindedly brought his hand around to stroke the skin of Draco's back. "Hmm?" he asked, eyes still closed. "You are ... upset, about something. I went to sleep and woke up with you inside me." Draco grinned. "I certainly don't mind that part, I just want to know what happened." Harry sighed and opened his eyes, looking at Draco for a second and then looking up at the ceiling. "It it's nothing. Ron was just a prat and he's it's not like I expected anything different from him." Draco lifted himself up on one elbow to look down at Harry. "Yeah, that doesn't surprise me. He would be pretty jealous by now," he said, watching Harry's face. Harry frowned and looked at Draco again. "Jealous?" he asked, confused. Draco snorted and shook his head. "Gryffindors. How you lot manage I will never understand. You miss so much of what is going on around you." "Do we really?" Harry asked, but then he shrugged. "You're probably right if I've missed that you've fancied me since first year. Although Hermione might disagree with you." "I didn't say that he fancied you in the way I do," Draco said. "I said he is jealous. Not all jealousy is about sex." He smirked again. "EUGH!" Harry said suddenly. "I didn't say he fancied me either!" He shuddered a bit at the very thought. Draco laughed happily. "What would the ... Granger disagree with exactly?" he asked, head cocked. "The thing about Gryffindors missing what's going on around us," Harry said, face still scrunched up with disgust. "Well, that one sees more than others." Draco sighed. "But Slytherins, we watch everything and everyone. Part of our training." Harry laughed. "Training?" he asked. "Must've missed the Gryffindor sessions," he said, shaking his head. "House training," Draco said and then frowned. "Though in my

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case it was hardly necessary, given my family's traditions." Harry quirked an eyebrow. "What do you mean?" Draco rolled back so that he lay beside Harry, looking up at the ceiling. "You have met my ... father," he said with a sigh. Harry frowned again. "Yes," he said, and he couldn't quite manage to push all the disgust out of his voice. The memory of the man who looked so much like Draco, pointing his wand at him and his friends in the Ministry, came to him instantly. "Have you ever actually thought about what kind of ... training I had before coming here?" he asked quietly. "No," Harry said quietly. "I didn't even know such things happened." "Well, it's not like I went to school before Hogwarts," Draco said. "I had tutors." "Oh, well, yeah. Ron's mum taught him and his brothers and Ginny and stuff. You know, math and how to read and write ... things like that." Draco snorted. "I would imagine what the Weasleys teach and what my father considers important would be ... very different." Harry nodded, unable to picture two families that were more different than the Weasleys and the Malfoys. "What things did you learn?" he asked. Draco rolled over and reached for his wand beside the bed, doing Cleaning Charms for both of them and then pulling the covers up. He lay back down, frowning at the ceiling. "Power, manipulation, war, strategy, seduction, dark magic, literature, philosophy, magical theory, he listed off. Harry's eyes grew wider with every word. "At younger than eleven?" he asked, slightly incredulous. "Manipulation, power, seduction? At eleven?" "Sun Tzu, Plato, Machiavelli, Shakespeare." Draco kept listing. "Latin, Greek, French, Spanish, German." Harry's eyes were still wide. "I don't even know most of that now," he said, staring at Draco. Draco nodded. "And I have been expected to continue those studies while here as well, with intensives on the breaks." "That's mad!" Harry said. "What on earth could you possibly do after school that would need all that?"

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Draco started laughing, not a happy laugh but one with a bit of hysteria to it. He shook his head. "What do you think they expect me to do after school, Harry?" Harry grimaced and hugged Draco to him. "Forget I asked," he said quietly. Draco allowed himself to be pulled against Harry and sighed. "So, when you finish school, what do you want to do?" he asked. "I want to be an Auror, I think," he said shrugging. "That's what all my classes are for this year anyway." Draco nipped at Harry's chest with his teeth. Harry flinched a bit and then grinned down at Draco. "Something you want?" he asked, brow raised. "I'm hungry." Draco smiled and looked into Harry's eyes. "Oh," Harry said, sitting up. He looked over at the tray on the bedside table. "Well, no wonder. It looks like you haven't eaten anything today." "I ate before you left but then I fell asleep," Draco said, frowning at the tray. Something about that bothered him. He felt he was missing something. Harry snorted humourlessly. "Passed out more like," he muttered. He got off the bed and examined the food. "This is all cold and gross," he said. "Want me to get you something else?" "Oh, yes," Draco said, sitting up and smiling. "And a pudding too." Harry snorted again, only now it was a real laugh. "Yes, sir," he said as he pulled his trousers on. "Anything else?" he added, grinning. Draco's smile became a big grin. "I like you waiting on me. I am sure I could find other things you could do for me ...." He waggled his eyebrows. Harry smirked and rolled his eyes. "I'm irresistible, I know," he said, shaking his hips a bit as he slid his slacks on. "But, you'll have to wait for some of this until after you eat." Draco chuckled. As you wish." Harry rolled his eyes again and left the room. He came back a few minutes later with a tray full of more food. They had eaten dinner and were working on the pudding. Draco felt a lot better now that Harry was there. He encouraged Harry to tell

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him about his day and listened intently. "... then I told them I just had the flu; they're not going to buy that obviously, but it was the only thing I could think of," Harry was saying as he took bite of pudding. Draco was momentarily distracted by the bit of chocolate on Harry's lips. He nodded his head, smiling. Harry sighed. "Hermione's being mental about everything of course," he said. "She told me she's already looked through three books on binding. It'll be a great help though." He stuck his tongue out and licked up some chocolate from his bottom lip. Draco nearly groaned, licking his own lips in automatic response. "I would like to read those books," he said, when he realised what Harry had said. Harry shrugged. "All right," he said, taking another bite. "I'll tell her to let me see them tomorrow." He sighed again and then whined. "When do you think you'll be able to go back to classes? I don't like you not being there with me. Today was torture." Draco frowned. "And what are we going to do when we have class together?" he asked. Harry frowned too. "I don't know," he said. "I'd just like to be able to see you at least. To know that youre all right. And I hear empty classrooms and broom closets can be quite useful," he added, wiggling his eyebrows. Draco made a kind of lopsided smirk that still seemed too serious. "How are we going to treat each other? Are we going to keep hiding this?" Harry frowned again. "We could just ignore each other ..." he said, knowing that that would just make people suspicious, but also knowing that he wouldn't be able to act like his old self if he tried. Draco snorted, and raised his eyebrows in that classic 'who are you kidding, Potter?' expression. Before either of them could continue, there was a knock at the door. Harry's head turned. He looked back at Draco and shrugged before getting up and going over to the door, as he was the only one wearing anything. Draco reached for his nightclothes, slipping the nightshirt over his head and then casting around, trying to figure out what had happened to the bottoms.

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Harry had been expecting Madam Pomfrey to be there with some potions for Draco or something, but it was not the school nurse. It was probably the last two people in the world whom he would choose to see him in his state of undress. Professor Snape stood sneering at him, one eyebrow raised. On his right was Professor McGonagall, with both eyebrows raised. "You might want to put some clothes on, Mr Potter," she said.

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Draco wrapped the sheet around his midsection and reached for his wand. Accio trousers," he said, and they came flying out of the mess on the floor. Harry turned red. "Um, one moment," he said quickly, closing the door in Snape and McGonagall's faces. He spun around as fast as he could and dove to the floor, searching for his shirt. He fell twice before he remembered that he could Summon his clothes as well. "What are they doing here?" he asked frantically as he did up his buttons. He couldn't believe he'd just shut a door in their faces. Draco put his trousers on and then ran his fingers through his hair, trying to look a bit more presentable. He nearly burst out laughing at the sight of a very flustered Harry trying to get dressed. "I heard McGonagall, who else?" he asked, realising Harry had said 'they. "Snape," Harry half-whispered, tucking his shirt in. "What do we do with this mess?" he asked. The room was a disaster. There was still a pile of clothes on the floor, and the food that Draco hadn't eaten, and the food that they had been eating, and the bed sheets were rather ... questionable. Draco rolled his eyes and began casting Cleaning and Straightening Charms. The clothes folded neatly into piles, the food remains settled back on the tray, the sheets were cleaned and the bed made. Everything seemed to fly around at once while he stood there flicking his wand. Finally, it was clean, just as there was another knock at the door. Harry had stood and watched things fly around him while Draco cleaned up. "Oh," he said. He dashed over to the door again and opened it. "Sorry," he said, stepping back to let them in. McGonagall gave him a look and walked past him. Snape came in and looked suspiciously about. He pulled his wand and conjured up a chair to sit in.

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Draco sat on the edge of the bed, one leg bent up, the other foot resting on the floor. He still held his wand in his hand. Harry looked around for a moment before walking quickly over to Draco and sitting next to him. Professor McGonagall stood and stared at everyone in the room for a second before, like Snape, she conjured a chair. "Surely you were told that we were coming?" she asked Harry and Draco. Harry was about to say no, but then remembered what Dumbledore had told them earlier. "Erm, we were told you might come," he said. Draco nodded, his eyes studying the teachers, but he didn't say anything. Snape regarded them both with a scowl. "We've come to make arrangements. Neither of you have slept in your dormitories for two nights now," she paused and looked at both boys sternly, her lips becoming a white line, "and I assume there have been a few more nights as well, considering why you're both here in the first place." Merlin, why did Harry have to be chastised by McGonagall for having sex? What had he done to deserve this? Draco sat still, not responding to Professor McGonagall at all, his face impassive. Snape sat back as well, his fingers steepled as he eyed the two. Draco knew what Snape was doing. He was letting McGonagall lay the groundwork before deciding his own move. "Frankly, you have both been acting like imbeciles," the Transfiguration teacher continued, her eyes daring them to retort. "We've, well, I've been notified of your condition, Mr Malfoy, and we haven't quite determined what we're going to do with the both of you yet. Obviously you'll have to stay here in the hospital wing until all of your strength has returned. Madam Pomfrey tells me that you are recovering quickly?" Draco supposed that she expected an answer from him, and inclined his head in a curt bow. "Thanks to Harry," he said, quietly but clearly. Harry shrugged a bit. "I don't have any idea what I've done though," he said. McGonagall nodded. "Yes, so I've been told as well. Neither of

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you appear to know what you've done. It's hardly surprising, to be honest." She sighed. "Harry, if we knew more about this binding promise you've made, I would make you go up to the Gryffindor common room this instant. However, that sort of magic is more in Professor Snape's realm." She inclined her head. Severus nodded, having already explained what he had deduced to both Dumbledore and McGonagall. "We can't very well separate you until we know the exact nature of the binding promises you both made, and what their effects will be." Harry nodded. "We've been talking about it," he said. "We thought about maybe using Professor Dumbledore's Pensieve to view the memory?" McGonagall nodded and seemed to be thinking for a moment. "Quite a good idea actually," she said. "And whom would you suggest view the memory?" Snape asked neutrally. "Draco. We already decided that he would do it if Professor Dumbledore were to let us use the Pensieve," Harry said. "I would speak what I saw and heard, and Harry would write it down," Draco added in a calm voice. Snape nodded. "Why Potter taking notes?" Draco's eyes flashed angry for a moment. "Because it is no one elses business what we shared," he said, his tone dangerous. McGonagall raised an eyebrow. "No need to get hostile, Mr Malfoy," she said. "I'm certain no one would want to impose on your privacy." Unnoticed by Snape and McGonagall, Harry placed a calming hand on Draco's lower back. "With all due respect," Draco began with a tone that implied not much in this case, "you have already threatened to break us up if you can." "The binding may not be healthy," Professor McGonagall said simply. "That is what is most important here. You are both sixteen years old and therefore not of age. You are still students at Hogwarts and therefore obliged to abide by school rules. If you wish to make a binding promise with Harry Potter after you both leave school, by all means, be my guest. As for now, this promise was made breaking the rules, so why shouldn't we try and take it off?"

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Harry could tell that his Head of House was being very nononsense about this, as she was with everything. Draco's eyes glittered silver-grey cold as he looked the woman in face. "Kill me then, because that is the only end to it I will suffer." That made Professor Snape sit up straighter and look at Draco with surprise and a lot more interest. Harry's eyes widened, and he grasped Draco's shirt. "Don't be silly, boy," McGonagall said, eyebrows raised. "No one is going to kill you." "Yeah," Draco drawled sarcastically, "because everyone has my best interests in mind." He shook his head. "You will do whatever you think you need to do to protect The Chosen One," he challenged McGonagall, ignoring Snape for the moment. Harry closed his eyes and gripped harder at Draco's shirt. McGonagall's nostrils flared. "That is certainly not what this is about, Mr Malfoy," she said calmly. "You may act as an arrogant child about all of this, thinking what you want, but you are both important here. According to Professor Snape and Madam Pomfrey, it seems you are the only one affected in this mess. We could just separate the two of you and not do a single thing about it, but here we sit, attempting to figure out a way to enable you to break school rules for your own benefit. I suggest you keep silent." Snape's head seemed to snap at her comments. "Minerva," he said quietly, "threatening the boy will hardly get the cooperation you are looking for. Nor will silencing him, as I am certain he has a greater understanding of the situation than Potter does." McGonagall glared at Snape. "Please, Severus, be my guest," she said stonily, and a bit sarcastically, gesturing to the boys. Harry swallowed. "We will see about your request to use a Pensieve, Snape began. "In the meantime, you need to tell us what effects you have discovered so far that you believe to be related to the Binding Spell." Draco tried hard to get his emotions under control. He felt the comforting and then urgent gestures of support from Harry, but couldn't spare the attention to respond. After a moment, he nodded, and began, "I seem to be under a magical compulsion to obey anything Harry words as a command." McGonagall raised an eyebrow and nodded.

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Harry looked at Draco and then at Snape and McGonagall. "Erm ... he needs me to he he gets sick if we aren't intimate, I think. It's happened twice now." Draco closed his eyes, breathing to fight the blush and only half succeeding. He cleared his throat. "Harry must ... er ... penetrate me." Harry blushed too, much worse than Draco. McGonagall's lips turned into a thin white line again. "And what happens if he doesn't?" she asked. "He sort of ... passes out ..." Harry answered. Draco shrugged, realising he really couldn't remember it. Snape leaned forward, his scowl deepening. "Yes, and how often?" "Er, I don't know," Harry said, shrugging, too. "It happened the first night here, and when I got back from classes today." Draco didn't meet Snape's eyes. He knew how angry his Head of House was with him already. "So daily, at least, it appears," Snape added. "What are the symptoms?" "He was really, really cold and shivering," Harry said, thinking back. "He couldn't move even and could hardly speak." "If he could hardly speak," McGonagall asked sharply, "then how did you know what to do with him?" "He could speak a little," Harry said. "He told me that he needed me ... inside." Draco lost his composure at that one, his face colouring. He nodded, remembering a bit of that. "And neither of you remember what phrase was used that resulted in this ... problem?" Snape asked, clearly exasperated. Harry made a bit of a face. "No ... I was a bit ... distracted at the time." McGonagall pinched the bridge of her nose. "Do you remember anything, Mr Malfoy?" Draco took a deep breath and closed his eyes. He stilled himself and concentrated, trying to remember the moment. Touch and sensation were his strongest memories of that night, but he could remember some of the phrases. He blushed anew. "I remember only some of the words. But nothing that would explain what Harry describes."

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"Well, we're not making any progress here at all," McGonagall said, shaking her head. "Perhaps the Pensieve is a necessity. Severus?" "I think at this point it would be best if we discussed this plan with the Headmaster," Snape agreed, standing and dismissing the chair he had been sitting in. "Yes," McGonagall said, standing and doing the same. "Hopefully we can to do so before Mr Malfoy is well enough to go back to classes. In the meantime, you may continue staying here, Harry. You can bring Mr Malfoy his homework until he is well." Harry nodded. Draco slumped forward, letting out a long breath the minute the door closed. "I hate this," he hissed. Harry rubbed Draco's shoulders. "Maybe it'll all get better when we get to use the Pensieve," he told him, frowning. Draco sighed, enjoying the massage of his very tight shoulders. "At least we don't have to go back to the dorms yet." Harry sighed happily at that. "Yeah, that's one good thing," he said, still rubbing Draco's shoulders. "Although they'll make us go back eventually," he added sadly. "Well, if you have class tomorrow," Draco said, "you should get some sleep." He turned and looked over this shoulder at Harry. "Besides, I suppose you will have to fuck me again in the morning ... just to be safe." He grinned. Harry grinned, raising an eyebrow. "Oh, just to be safe, hmm?" he asked with a laugh. Draco nodded, trying to look serious but failing completely. He broke into snickers. He turned and put his arms around Harry, kissing him. Harry smiled against Draco's lips and wrapped his arms around his neck, pulling the boy down on top of him. He broke the kiss and just lay there, looking up into Draco's face, stroking his cheek. "Do you really not remember the promises?" Draco asked softly. "I remember telling you that you're mine," Harry said gently. "That you're mine and will never be anyone else's. That's all that matters, isn't it?" "To me probably all that matters." Draco smiled. "But since you insist on keeping me alive, you might want to know more." Harry nodded. "I will keep you alive," he said firmly, grabbing

PRETENDING Draco's head and shaking it lightly for emphasis. "I will." Draco closed his eyes and sighed. "Then let's get some sleep."

185

Harry, once again, had a horrible day. Ron was still ignoring him, and Harry wondered how long he would keep it up. Hermione had handed him the books on binding to give to Draco, and McGonagall had told him that they could go and see Dumbledore once classes were over. At least that was something. He headed right for their room in the hospital wing, sighing with relief when he saw that Draco wasn't passed out on the bed today. Draco had been reduced to studying, since there had been nothing else to do most of the day. He had completed the homework he had by mid-day. That left the rest of the day thinking about Harry. By the time Harry came through the door, Draco may not have been weak from the spell, but he was pretty anxious. Harry came straight over to Draco and kissed him. "McGonagall said we can see Dumbledore today," he told him. "Now?" Draco asked, not wanting anything at the moment other than to hold Harry. "Well, she said after classes, she didn't say exactly when," Harry said, shrugging. "I have those books you wanted, too." Draco took the books and looked at them. "They look interesting. At least I will have something to do tomorrow." He set them down and sat back on the bed, holding Harry's hand and looking at the floor. Harry sighed and sat down next to Draco, running his fingers through the hair at the nape of his neck. "You all right today?" Draco shrugged and then looked up, his eyes soft and sad. "I missed you." Harry smiled and kissed Draco again. "I missed you, too," he said quietly, resting his forehead against Draco's. "So we do this; we find out what we promised," Draco said. "Then what?" "I don't know," Harry said. "We figure out what to do about it. We find out what the teachers think and make a decision. And then I start trying to find a way to get that fucking thing off your arm." Draco shivered at Harry's words. Loved them. Loved ... "So we show them the notes when we've finished with the Pensieve?" Draco

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asked. "Yeah, I guess," Harry said, kissing Draco again. "We'll have to, won't we?" "I want to discuss it with you without them before we do," Draco said. "I'm sure they'll leave us alone until we're done with the Pensieve. We can just stay in there a bit longer and talk about it before we get Dumbledore again." "If they will agree to leave us alone until we are ready to come out," Draco said. Harry sighed. "We can refuse to do it if they won't leave us alone. We're the ones with the memory." "I think we should use your memory since you had the better view." Draco grinned. Harry grinned too. "It doesn't matter; we'll be inside the memory or rather, you'll be, no matter whose memory we use." "Still, I don't trust anyone pulling memories from me," Draco said. "So you do it, okay?" "I'll do it," Harry agreed simply, kissing Draco's temple. "Do you know how a Pensieve works?" he asked, his mind drifting off to the night of the promise. "Yes," Draco said quietly, looking at the floor again. "Mmm, I wish we could both go inside the memory," Harry almost whined, falling backwards on the bed. "We could watch it like we were there again and take notes that way, although we'd probably just end up shagging like mad." He sighed. "Can't you see it? Shagging in a room where we're already shagging." He sighed again. Draco's eyes widened in shock; it really hadn't occurred to him. "Oh, Gods," he gasped. "Yes, exactly," Harry said sadly. "I want to do it so badly." The blond nodded his head quickly, licking his lips. "Yes," he whispered. Harry sighed again. "Too bad, eh?" he said, shaking his head. "Merlin, it'll be so damn tempting." "Why can't we?" Draco asked. He had been partially aroused ever since Harry had walked in, and it was getting stronger by the minute. Harry frowned and sat up again. "We'll hardly be able to take notes that way," he said with a laugh, but his eyes glittered with

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possibility. "I could if you ordered me to," Draco said before he could stop himself. Harry's eyes widened, his breathing sped up. "You think you'd be able to?" Grinning, Draco nodded. "Wouldn't have a choice, would I?" "Fucking hell, what would the notes look like?" Harry asked, suddenly more excited than he had ever been to go to Dumbledore's office. Draco was still grinning. "I have been told I have exceptional penmanship." "Does that hold up while youre being fucked?" Harry asked huskily, leaning in to kiss Draco. "I guess we will find out," Draco whispered against his lips and then leaned into the kiss. Harry pushed Draco down on the bed. "Fuck, do you know what we're gonna look like? he asked, kissing along Draco's jaw. "Do you have any idea?" He kissed Draco's mouth again, licking his lips. "Oh, yes," Draco whispered against Harry's mouth, pushing himself up against the boy suddenly on top of him. "We're gonna look fucking hot," Harry said huskily. His trousers were getting very tight now. Draco's silk bottoms were tented, and the feel of the soft fabric sliding against his erection as he thrust up against Harry was intense. "Yes, fucking hot," he said. "Watching you claim me." "So fucking hot," Harry whispered along Draco's neck as he began sucking on the skin there. He thrust down against him. "Holy shit, I can't wait." He thrust down more, harder. "No waiting," Draco said, arching into Harry. "Want you now." He gasped and grabbed Harry's hips, digging fingers into the fabric covering them. Harry gasped too, thrusting a few more times, and then wrenched his mouth from Draco's skin. He forced himself to still. "No," he said. He rolled off him, panting. "No, let's wait," he said, eyes closed tight. Draco rolled after him, pinning Harry down. "I have waited all day for you, Harry," he said, nearly growling. Harry was still panting and his eyes flew open. "I fucked you this

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morning!" he exclaimed, not knowing if was going to be able to keep himself from the lips above him. Fucking hell, Draco was hot when he growled. Draco's smile was a playful version of his old sneer. "Can't keep up with me ... Potter?" Harry's eyes lit up. He growled, literally, and pushed Draco off him, pushing him back down on his back. "Oh, I can keep up with you just fine, Malfoy," he said forcibly. He lowered himself and bit the side of Draco's face. Harry had thought that he never wanted to go back to this, but pretending was just about the hottest thing he could imagine. Draco's grin turned feral and he pushed back, literally wrestling Harry for control. Harry grabbed Draco's arms and tried to get them pinned over his head, biting along Draco's jaw. It didn't last very long before Harry had to fight to keep the top position. Draco was still a bit sick, but, fuck, he was strong. Draco flipped sideways and used his weight to roll Harry face down into the mattress, laying his entire body atop the other boy's. He straddled Harry's hips, hooked his feet back over his thighs to hold his legs, and used one hand to grip Harry's hair. He leant his other arm from elbow to wrist across Harry's back. "I have you ... Potter, and I am going to fuck you." Harry growled again, trying to flip them over, but he couldn't get Draco off him. "Get off me, Malfoy!" he shouted, body thrumming with pleasure. He tried in vain to flip them again. Draco stood up suddenly, releasing Harry and standing with his hands clenched at his sides. "Fuck," he shouted, highly annoyed at the sudden compulsion. Harry cursed in frustration. "Dammit! Fucking hell, fuck!" he yelled. He tried to breathe normally again, but he couldn't. He wanted to cry because Draco had got off him, even though it was his own fault. "Release it and I will," Draco growled in frustration. "Fuck me!" Harry told him. "Fuck me, bite me, scratch me, please!" he added, so he could know that Draco was doing everything of his own free will. Draco was ripping at his clothes by the time Harry made it to

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'please. He reached under him, quickly undoing his trousers and yanking them forcefully off along with his shorts. He didn't even bother with the shirt, merely pushing it up as far as it would go. Harry managed to rip his own shirt off while he still tried to fight Draco off, even though the last thing he wanted was for him to get off him again. He refrained from speaking this time though, merely growling and yelling, and crying out with pretend rage that seemed real. Draco put a knee into the small of Harry's back, holding him down while he reached for the lube. His own cock was hard and standing very erect. He lubed it swiftly and then shifted to hold Harry down with his other hand. He straddled one of Harry's thighs while reaching with his other hand between his legs. "Fucking hell!" Harry shouted, trying to scratch Draco from his position. He was still trying to buck the other boy off, but secretly wished that he wouldn't be able to. One hand reached down, slicking Harry's entrance quickly and the other reached up and grabbed his hair again. Oh, but that thick mop was so good! Draco pulled hard, using it to pin Harry to the bed. He brought his other hand up to push into the small of Harry's back while he moved between his legs. Harry thought he must've finally found out what Draco felt like when he was going to pass out because, damn, he nearly did. He roared with rage as he struggled to flip them still, silently wishing for that cock to be in him, wishing Draco would just put it in already. He nearly told him to do so, but he kept up the game. "Fuck you," he yelled, after somehow being able to think for a moment whether or not that would make Draco have to do anything. He deemed it safe and yelled it again. "Fuck, you!" He really wanted to yell "fuck me." "I would rather fuck Harry Potter," Draco growled, positioning himself for just that. He pushed forward at the same time as he pulled Harry's hair hard. Harry was sure his lungs were going to burst, or his throat was going to split, or something if he didn't stop screaming, but he couldn't stop. He bucked back and against Draco, still trying to push him off. He didn't ever want this to stop, not ever. He tried to scratch at Draco again but couldn't quite reach him. Draco plunged his cock into Harry as hard and as far as he could.

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He almost came then, having to hold himself still for a minute, with Harry thrashing and screaming under him. If he didn't know better, he would think Harry was really fighting him. But the compulsion would not give him the choice of stopping anyway, and Harry knew that. So he began to thrust into him, holding Harry's hip and hair. Harry screamed again, the scream going hoarse in the end. Draco was pulling his hair, and holding him down, and fucking him hard. He thought he was going to die. God, it fucking hurt, all over, but it only made it, fuck, so much better. He wanted Draco to talk to him like he would if he were Malfoy again, but he didn't want to tell him to. He didn't want to tell him to do anything. He wanted to fight him until he came, but even that was getting hard to do as his hips began meeting Draco's thrusts, seemingly of their own free will. "Yes, Potter," Draco gasped, "you like being fucked by Draco Malfoy, don't you? He thrust hard and fast, leaning over so that he could reach Harry's back and shoulders. He dug his nails in at Harry's hip and yanked his hair up so that the back of his neck was exposed. "Saint Potter being fucked. The Golden Boy with my cock up his arse!" Harry just about came at that. He groaned at the sharp pain of Draco's nails digging into his skin and his hair being pulled. He wanted to scream yes; he wanted to scream that he was Draco's as much as Draco was his, but he didn't. He reached up and around again and was somehow able to awkwardly reach some part of Draco's skin and finally, finally scratch him. Draco pulled the other boy up from the bed by his hair, so that Harry was kneeling and Draco could reach his neck. He still held him, fucking him in hard strokes as he hissed against this ear. "I have wanted this since that day in the cloak shop. Every time you beat me at Quidditch, I wanted to throw you over a bench in the locker room and fuck you like this. You drove me fucking crazy. You still do," he said and leaned in and took the flesh at the back of Harry's neck in his teeth and bit. Harry threw his head back, shouting at the top of his lungs. All of Scotland probably heard him. He trailed his nails down his own body and grasped his cock, fisting it roughly in time with Draco's thrusts. He'd given up fighting now and merely wished that Draco wouldn't. He hoped and prayed that Draco would bite him again.

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Draco didn't let go, his teeth sunk into Harry's skin and his cock in his arse. He was thrusting furiously now. He closed his eyes and felt the power in Harry rising with his arousal. It was intoxicating, and he could feel Harry getting close. Harry nearly went limp leaning back against Draco. He shouted weakly again. His hair was wet with sweat, and he laid his head back against Draco's shoulder, still pumping his cock. Any second now he was going to come; he pumped faster. Oh fucking hell, any second now. Draco released Harry's skin, licking at the wound and hissed, "Come, Potter, come on your knees with me inside you." And then he bit down again on that line of muscle where Harry's neck and shoulder met. Harry squeezed his eyes shut; pumping even faster, and then he came hard and perfectly. He came so powerfully it almost hit him in the face. He collapsed, shaking and twitching from the aftershocks of his orgasm. He could hardly breathe. Harry's release triggered Draco's own as he pumped furiously into him. He held Harry tight until they had both emptied themselves then collapsed forward with him, lying atop Harry and trembling violently. Harry stayed completely still for several moments, his eyes still closed and every part of him sore. He let out a shaky breath. "Draco?" he said just as shakily. Draco started laughing, still clutching Harry beneath him. Harry laughed too, too weak to do anything other than lie there. Draco laid his cheek against Harry's back, laughing so hard he was trembling with it. He untangled his hand from Harry's hair and dropped it beside him. "All that yelling," he gasped. "I am surprised they didn't ... run in here with wands drawn ... and hex me." Harry reached and grasped Draco's hand. "That was fucking amazing," he said weakly, still not able to move, or just not wanting to he couldn't even tell. "Oh, yes." Draco continued to snicker. "My very own Chosen One." Harry let out a great breath and smiled goofily, his eyes heavily lidded. "I'm yours," he said simply, "even though you can't order me around. It makes me more yours, you might say."

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"Yes, mine." Draco smiled happily, then he groaned, pulling back so that he could take some of this weight off Harry. He pulled out, feeling the loss of Harry's warmth, but not his magic. Harry sighed and winced a bit, then rubbed the back of his neck, feeling teeth marks there. It hurt a bit, but he smiled. He still didn't make any move to get up. On his hands and knees above Harry, Draco leaned over and whispered in his ear, "I'm hungry." Harry finally rolled over to face Draco. "And I bet you want me to go get you something?" he asked, eyebrows raised and a wry smile on his face. "After I just let you fuck the hell out of me?" In all honesty, he didn't mind, but he wasn't going to tell Draco that. Draco shrugged, leaning in and kissing Harry. He grinned. "I would volunteer to eat you, but I think you should save something for later." Harry sighed, shaking his head. "That was the most unintentional sex I've ever had," he said, laughing. "I didn't mean to get you all worked up, but I'm glad I did." "Are you telling me the first time on the couch was intentional?" Draco smiled. "And I am always worked up around you. Some things never change." Harry laughed. "All right, all right," he said. It was the second most unintentional sex then. Merlin, I hope I have something left for later. It almost hit me in the face!" Draco leant in and kissed Harry again and then began licking his way down his chin, looking for the top of that spray. Harry frowned a bit. "What are you doing?" he asked curiously. "Mmm." Draco kept licking his way down Harry's chest, finally reaching the other boy's come. Harry looked down and gasped. "Why do you have to be so fucking hot?" he asked breathlessly. Draco arched an eyebrow, looking directly at Harry while he licked the come off his chest. "I'm hungry," he said, continuing the sucking and licking. "Oh fuck," Harry let out exhaustedly, burying one hand in Draco's hair and letting his head fall back. He couldn't get hard again, but it was still hot. Most of it had probably rubbed off when Harry fell onto the bed,

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but Draco cleaned every sticky inch, all the way down to Harry's still soft cock. He sat back then on his feet, licking his lips and grinning down at Harry. We should probably eat dinner before we go to the old man's office. Harry just continued to lie on the bed. "Yeah," he said in a spaced out sort of way. He let his hands rest on his stomach, forgetting that he was the one who was supposed to go and get the food. Draco pushed off the bed and picked up his wand, casting Cleaning Charms for both of him. "Come on, you lazy git," he teased. "I am supposed to eat, and you don't want to have to explain to the Headmaster why we are late." Harry sighed and held a hand up pitifully. "Help me up," he ordered, smirking. Draco shook his head, reaching a hand out to pull Harry from the bed and against him. "Prat," he whispered. Harry's smirk became more pronounced, and he kissed Draco on the cheek. "And yet you still want me," he said, pulling on his trousers. It was becoming a routine thing. "Yes, I do," Draco said and leaned against the wall, still naked. "I am not leaving here in bed-clothes. Would you have them get me my own clothes to wear?" "Mmhm," Harry said, doing up his trousers. "Anything specific you want for dinner?" "Not really," Draco said, watching Harry quietly. "Just make sure it includes dessert." Harry smiled. "Yeah, all right," he said, and he made his way over to the door and left the room.

CHAPTER TWENTY

Dj Vu
As much as he loved the feel of silk, Draco felt good to be in his own clothes again. It seemed like years, rather than a couple days. He walked beside Harry as they made their way up to the Headmaster's office, careful not to actually touch him, but still close enough that he could. They did get a few stares along the way, but he just sneered at the gawkers and nobody bothered them. Harry was used to the stares of course, but they made him feel awkward all the same. He wanted to reach out and grab Draco's hand, but he didn't for obvious reasons. He was glad when they were finally standing before the gargoyle in front of Dumbledore's office. He gave the password, having used it so many times already that year, and looked around to see that no one was watching before pulling Draco onto the moving staircase and into a kiss. Draco was startled by it. He had been so focused on controlling his facial expressions, that he gasped when Harry grabbed him, but then kissed back eagerly. Harry kissed Draco all the way up the stairs, and didn't stop when they had been brought in front of the door. "Sorry," he breathed after a few moments, passing fingers through Draco's soft hair, "couldn't resist." He licked his lips. "Ready?" Draco was still breathless and a bit flushed from the kiss, but he nodded, smiling. Harry pressed his lips forward against Draco's for another single moment before he pulled reluctantly away. He lifted his hand and knocked on the door. Draco barely had time to wipe the smile off his face before the knock was answered. He had never been comfortable the few times he had actually been up there, and, this year in particular, Dumbledore was literally the last person at school he wanted to be around. Dumbledore smiled down his nose at the boys. "Come in," he

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said, holding the door open for them. Harry nodded and walked forward into the room. Draco nodded as well and kept close to Harry, quickly looking around the room to see who else might be there, it was only the old man, though. Dumbledore shut the door behind them and ushered them over to sit down. The Pensieve was already waiting for them on his large desk. He didn't sit. "Your Heads of House have told me why you are here," he said. "Quite a good thing to think of to review the memory. I am sorry that I didn't think of it myself, but alas, my old mind is preoccupied these days." Harry nodded again. Draco eyed Dumbledore suspiciously but sat down when Harry did. "The memory is rather personal, I daresay, so I'll leave you here to get to it. There are some matters I must discuss with Professor Snape anyway. Please, send Fawkes when you are finished." Harry nodded once more, surprised that Dumbledore was leaving them so quickly. Draco made a small cough and rolled his eyes at Harry. Harry frowned a bit at Draco. "Yes, sir," he said. Very well. You know how to use the Pensieve, Harry. Good day." He turned on the spot, and, with several long strides, was gone. Draco looked after him, frowning. "What was the eye roll for?" Harry asked once the door had closed behind the Headmaster. "Never mind," Draco said in an irritated voice. Harry sighed and shrugged. "Shall we get started then?" he asked with sly smirk. Draco relented and gave him a smile. "Where do we ... um? I mean, will we still be in our bodies? Will the bird be able to see?" Harry raised an eyebrow. "First off, I don't want to know why you care if a bloody bird sees, and second, yes, we will be in our bodies and we'll be inside the memory, inside the Pensieve if you will." Draco blushed, still looking at the bird. "Should we take our clothes off first?"

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Harry shrugged, having not thought about that. "I guess so," he said. "Don't want to chance having to come back without them." That did it! Draco coloured brightly. The idea of being found naked by Dumbledore disturbed him quite a bit. He looked at Harry like he was trying to figure out if he was kidding, but started undressing anyway. He set parchment and quill next to the Pensieve as he did. Harry laughed and shook his head, but he began undoing the clasps on his robes. "What do you two think you're doing!" asked a voice that certainly did not belong to Harry or Draco. Harry nearly jumped out of skin as he looked up to see one of the portraits staring at him. Draco had pulled his wand. "Fuck," he said angrily when he saw who had actually spoken. "Well?" asked the portrait of the little old man. Harry looked to Draco. What now?" he asked. "Who were you?" Draco asked, frowning and dropping his wand to his side. The little old man drew himself up proudly. "Edward Biggins," he said. "One of the most respected headmasters Hogwarts has ever had." Harry raised an eyebrow; so did some of the other portraits. Draco dropped into a chair, sighing. "I can't believe this!" Harry frowned. "We could chance getting undressed in the Pensieve; it'll probably just chuck our clothes out with us," he said quietly, so that the paintings couldn't hear. "Oh, that sounds lovely," Draco sneered, looking at the portraits again. He took a deep breath and shrugged. "Well, what do you suggest?" Harry asked. "Can we take it somewhere else?" Draco asked, pointing to the Pensieve. "We can't leave the office, but I suppose we could take it over there where they can't see us," Harry said, pointing to the further part of the room. "What's back there?" Draco asked, staring at a curtained off area. Harry shrugged. "Go see." Draco stood and walked over, pushing aside the curtain to look.

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"It's a bedroom," he said with a laugh. Harry chuckled a bit. "Well, that's convenient," he said, walking over to look inside. "It'll be sort of like having sex in Dumbledore's bedroom though," he said, face scrunched. "Potter," Draco drawled, and glanced back at the portraits, "there are no little old men or women to watch us in there." Harry grimaced and nodded. "I'll just get the stuff real quick then," he said, and turned back again. Draco held the curtain for him, while Harry carried the Pensieve. He reset the scroll and quill beside it and then began to strip. Harry did too, getting undressed in record time and already feeling his cock stir. Draco stood naked and regarded Harry for a moment. He shook his head and grinned. "Ready already I see." Harry blushed a bit and reached forward to slap Draco on the arse. "Not all the way," he said fairly. "Besides, it's hot and you know it." Draco smirked and nodded, picking up the quill and parchment. "Ready when you are, Potter," he quipped. "Who's the eager one here, Mr Malfoy?" Harry asked, smirking. "We haven't even put the memory in." "Mr Potter," Draco drawled, "youd better hurry or we will end up shagging right here." Harry smirked again. He picked his wand up and held it to his temple, thinking about that night. He pulled it away and a long silvery memory flowed down into the Pensieve and began swirling inside it. Draco's expression turned serious while he watched Harry and he stood quiet. "I guess that's right," Harry said, turning back to Draco. "Ready?" "Wait," Draco said. "Do you know what you will order me to do?" he said, holding up the parchment. Harry shrugged. "I'll tell you to take notes, right?" "You need to order me to write down a description of everything we said in the memory," Draco countered. "I think what we did will be pretty clear to us, but the exact words may be important later." Harry nodded. "All right," he said. "So you think you'll be able to manage okay while we're going at it?" Draco grinned. "I guess we will find out. Just make sure not to

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give me any orders that contradict the main one." Harry chuckled and looked Draco's body up and down. "I'll see what I can do," he said, eyes sparkling. "Ready now then?" Draco raised an eyebrow. "Ready," he answered, and took Harry's hand in his. Harry pulled Draco right up next to him and bent down so that his face was almost pressed into the swirling memory. He looked at Draco one last time, then plunged his face in, falling through the darkness. Draco moved with Harry, his face hitting the mist. He clung to Harry as they fell, relieved when they were standing in the familiar sitting room. They heard Harry's voice saying, "Draco, get up!" Harry held on to Draco's hand tightly and stood slightly disoriented for a moment before he opened his eyes. The Draco from the memory, who was much grayer than the one standing next to him, was lying on the couch. He watched his naked self frantically telling Draco to wake up. It was very strange, and he hadn't counted on it being quite so embarrassing. Draco took a sharp breath at the sight of himself passed out and the sound of fear in the memory-Harry's voice. With a shiver, he realised that he wanted to obey, but could resist the memory voice. "Order me now," he whispered to Harry. Harry nodded, his eyes glued to himself and Draco from the past. He cleared his throat before he spoke. "Take notes, Draco," he said. "Write down everything we say." Draco knelt by the table and laid the parchment on it, beginning to write immediately. His hand almost worked on its own as he watched the scene in front of him only a few feet away. Harry remained, still watching the scene before him. He watched in wonder as his own likeness searched around the floor frantically for his wand. Merlin, he looked terrified. Draco watched as his memory self was revived and shook his head as he copied down the argument over whether or not he was eating. He almost laughed when he heard himself try to change the subject. It usually worked so well with Harry. Harry peered at himself, once again thinking that he'd been stupid for not noticing sooner. "You're so damn stubborn, Draco," he murmured to the real one.

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Draco smiled. "We both are." He was writing furiously now, recording their argument about his 'mission. Harry chuckled a bit and continued watching. "You still won't bloody tell me who it is," he said as his past self begged past Draco to tell who he was supposed to kill. He thought memory Harry looked pretty pitiful, and he blushed at the tears coming down his face. Draco tensed when he saw himself reveal the serpent and memory Harry's horrified expression. He only sighed in response to the current Harry's comment. Draco knew the moment the spell began to form in the currents of magic around the two figures and his eyes widened in response. Memory Harry had pulled Draco to him and began a fierce kiss, both of them crying. When he uttered the words "You're mine" there was a shift in both their energies. Here it comes, Draco thought, everything beyond this is the binding. Harry's heart began beating quicker as he watched himself kiss Draco that hard. He swallowed. It was strange to watch everything playing out, strange to watch Draco writhe beneath him from his current position next to the real Draco, but it was very arousing. Draco knelt by the low table of the room, on the other end from the tea service. He leant forward, one hand holding the quill, still scribbling, and his other hand tight on the edge of the table. His eyes were on the scene in front of him, but they flicked up to Harry standing beside him. "Yes, yours," he whispered to him. No matter how many times Draco said that, it never ceased to amaze Harry. He moved to drop to his knees behind Draco. He kissed the side of his neck and moved an arm down Draco's chest, still staring at the blokes in front of them. "Merlin, look at us, Draco," he whispered, delivering a long, slow lick to Draco's skin. Draco's eyes were on memory Harry, who was tongue fucking him on the couch. He shivered at his Harry's lick and moaned. "Yes, so amazing," he answered. "Did you like the way that felt?" Harry asked, copying the motions he knew his tongue had been making that night on Draco's neck. He slid his hand down slowly, grasping Draco's cock. While memory Harry and Draco were quick and frantic, real-time Harry was being slow, and trying his very hardest to be sexy. "Gods, yes," Draco gasped, unable to close his eyes while he watched and wrote. He blinked several times. Then he hissed as he

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saw the moment memory Harry cut his finger and slid the bloody, oiled digits into him. "Fuck, you used blood!" he said in shock. Harry was bit distracted by that. "Yeah," he said. He had forgotten Draco didn't know. He returned to the skin in front of him and Summoned the lube they'd brought. "Think you can still manage to be fucked?" he asked huskily, giving Draco's cock one quick pump. Draco's breathing sped up considerably at that, and he bucked back against Harry. "Oh, yes," he said, writing at the same time only you that he had promised before. "Good," Harry said. "Bend over a bit more." He slicked his fingers as he watched his past self prepare past Draco. "Yes, please, Draco sobbed in echo of his counterpart on the sofa, and leaned in. Harry smirked and pushed two fingers past the tight ring of muscle. "Fucking hell, you're so fucking tight," his past-self whined. Harry moved his fingers in and out of Draco. "He's right, you know," he whispered into Draco's ear. Draco whimpered, both at the words and the strangeness of being so divided. He watched himself with Harry and the spell kept him writing everything, even as he desperately wanted to drop the quill and grab Harry. "You belong under me," Harry just barely heard himself say. He was glad they were so close to the blokes on the couch. "He's right about that, too," he said, inserting another finger. Draco moaned, reciting the words with memory-Draco. "Oh, yes. Yours, not His, yours!" He pushed against the table and back onto Harry's fingers. "Very, very true," Harry said, thrusting his fingers a few more times and then withdrawing them completely. He slicked his cock and bent Draco over just a bit more, moving into position behind him, all the while watching himself finally sliding in. "Please, Harry," Draco repeated. "Claim me, fill me." He seemed no longer content to simply write the words he had said before, but now repeated the lines, finding the power in them and Harry behind him irresistible. Harry grinned as he recited, "My pleasure." He pushed in gently, but not too gently, and waited for a long moment before sliding all

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the way in. Draco moaned at the feel and sight of Harry inside him. It was overpowering. His hand continued to write and his eyes widened at memory-Harry's next words. "That's it," he whispered and pushed back against Harry, feeling his words fit both. Harry gripped Draco's hips and pulled out of him slowly, almost all the way, and then slid back in harder than before. He picked up the pace very soon, trying to match himself. "Oh, Gods. Yes, I need you," Draco gasped, body trembling and hand continuing to record even if the script was getting messy. He could feel Harry's magic vibrating through his entire body, Harrys cock in his arse at the centre of the sensations. Harry continued pumping his hips, but resisted throwing his head back so he could still watch the scene on the couch. He pumped Draco's cock, too, in time with his hips. Sweat was beginning to pour from his body, and his breathing was harsh and loud. He could barely see memory-Harry's cock thrusting into memory-Draco, but fucking hell it was hot. Just their bodies and the way they moved. It was like they were made for each other. "Harry! I'm yours!" Draco screamed. "Really and truly yours!" And then, like his double before him, he was coming; gripping the table so hard his fingers were white. Harry made a strangled sound as Draco convulsed around him, but he actually didn't come until a couple moments later. He was amazed that he was able to go even two minutes longer than Draco with what was playing out before his eyes. He came with a shout of, "You're fucking mine!" and fell forward, but didn't fall against Draco, instead grabbing the table to steady himself. In the scene before them, Harry was babbling his love for Draco in his ear. And Draco, having just come under Harry, who was still fucking him, remembered what his thoughts had been at that moment. He could see it on the face in front of him. The realisation that he loved Harry and that he wanted desperately to live so he could be with him. Just like the memory version, Draco began to cry. Behind him, Harry was coming just as the memory Harry was getting sleepy. It took a few seconds for Harry to realise that Draco was crying. He pulled out of him, but then hugged him tightly around the middle,

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trying to pull him into his lap. "I do love you," he said quietly, kissing Draco's skin. At that moment, Draco was writing again, writing words he had said to the sleeping Harry in the memory and which he found himself saying again. "Harry, I love you." And then suddenly they were thrown out onto the floor of Dumbledore's chamber, falling forward onto the parchment now that the table had disappeared. Harry was completely still, his arms awkwardly wrapped around Draco. His heart literally hurt from what he had just heard Draco say. He couldn't talk. All this time Draco hadn't said that to him, and while it really hadn't been that long, it felt like it. But now Harry knew that he had said it, and that he'd just said it again. He felt like the biggest bloody girl in the world, but he couldn't stop the tears that formed in his eyes.

CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

No Choice
Draco was breathing hard and tears were still running down his cheeks. He knew that Harry had heard him say he loved him. The quill had snapped when he fell forward. Draco was still pressed down on the floor, the broken quill digging into his skin. He breathed deep and whispered, "Harry?" Harry couldn't manage an answer, just a very thick, "Mmm?" "Can we move?" Draco asked softly. Harry, once again, didn't say anything. He didn't know why, but he was afraid to let Draco go. He moved up, still grasping Draco around the middle and pulling him with him. He didn't want Draco to see his face. Draco dropped the quill and parchment and reached his hands for Harry, turning in his arms to face him. Harry immediately buried his face in Draco's neck, still holding him. A few tears had fallen now. He hadn't realised how strongly Draco's words would affect him. He hadn't realised how badly he'd wanted to hear them, and how afraid he'd been that he might never. Draco's arms came around Harry, one hand cradling his head and the other around his shoulders. "Harry?" he asked again. "Is something wrong?" Harry shook his head. God, why did he have to be such a weepy prat? He knew Draco wouldn't buy it though, as he still didn't bring his face out of hiding. Draco took a gentle but firm grip of Harry's hair and, with the other hand, reached for his chin, pulling himself back at the same time so he could look at Harry's face. "Tell me," he pleaded. Harry closed his eyes so he wouldn't have to look Draco in the face. "I you've never said that before," he just barely managed to choke out. Draco sighed. "I ... didn't mean to upset you." He looked down. He hadn't expected Harry to react this badly and now he was

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nervous. Harry couldn't hold back anymore. He threw his arms around Draco's shoulders and hugged him as tightly as he could. "God, I love you," he sobbed. "I love you so much." Startled, Draco let go of Harry but then returned the embrace. "I love you, Harry," he managed, rubbing soothing circles on Harry's back, the feel of his tears on his skin a comfort. They always seemed to be bathed in each other. He smirked. Harry sobbed even harder at hearing the words again. He pulled back quickly. "Do you?" he asked, heart racing. He didn't know why it was so hard to believe. Draco's eyes widened at the question. "If you doubt me, order me to tell you the truth," he said, a bit defensive at being asked. Harry closed his eyes and pulled Draco to him again. That was the only answer he needed. "No," he whispered, breathing in the smell of Draco's skin. Draco relaxed, allowing himself to be drawn in again and held. He closed his eyes for a moment, replaying what he had seen and felt in the memory, and what they had just done. They had the parchment now, but he was pretty sure he could recite every word of the binding promise if needed. Harry held Draco for a few more minutes before pulling back slightly and kissing him gently, resting their foreheads together. "I love you," he whispered one last time. "I love you," Draco returned, without hesitation this time. "Foolish Gryffindor," he added, smirking. Harry smiled. "Stuck-up Slytherin," he said, pecking Draco on the lips. Draco nodded and then pulled back, looking around for the parchment he had dropped. He picked it up and grimaced. The early part of the parchment was in his very neat script, but the later parts were increasingly messy, even if still readable. He handed it to his lover. Harry took it and looked down at it. He smiled with a raised eyebrow. "Got a bit shaky there?" he asked before he began to skim it. Draco smiled and then sat back on the carpet. At least Dumbledore had a rug. He rubbed the red patches on his knees and

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grimaced at the sight of the more serious rug burn on the tops of his toes. Harry continued to read, his eyes widening as he got closer to the end. "Bloody hell, I have a dirty mouth," he said. "Perhaps I should cut back on the swearing." Draco laughed happily. "I find it quite undoes me. Saint Potter of the Dirty Words." He looked around for his clothes and pulled his wand. He wiggled his bloody toes and then did a simple Healing Charm on them. Harry laughed too. "So what parts of this mean something?" he asked, looking up at Draco. "I mean, I get the parts where I say you're mine and that I ... own you, but is there anything else? What's with the whole you needing me to shag you thing?" Draco nodded, taking a deep breath. "I need to study this and those books you brought me to be sure." He did a Cleaning Spell for each of them and reached for his clothes. "I don't want to show this to anyone yet." He pointed at the mist in the Pensieve. "And we need to destroy the record of it." Harry nodded, getting to his feet. "I think I'll just put it back," he said, reaching for his clothes as well. Draco took the parchment, rolling it up and tucking it in one of his robe pockets while he finished getting dressed. Once he was clothed again, Harry stood before the Pensieve. He prodded at the swirling mist until it clung to his wand tip. Picking it up carefully, he put it back safe inside his head. "Well, that's done," he said, looking up at Draco again. "Let's put that back too," Draco said, gesturing to the Pensieve and holding the curtain for Harry. Harry picked the basin up and carried it out to the main room, setting it back on Dumbledore's desk. "Should I send Fawkes for him now?" he asked. "I suppose," Draco said, regarding the bird critically and glancing at the 'sleeping' portraits. Harry turned to the phoenix, unsure of how exactly he was supposed to tell it to get Dumbledore. "Erm, go get Dumbledore please?" he asked, shrugging. Fawkes disappeared suddenly in a flash of flame and reappeared seconds later. Harry raised his eyebrows. "Did it work?" he asked Draco.

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Draco shrugged and looked anxiously around for the reappearance of Dumbledore. He took a deep breath, preparing to have to deal with the man. He felt emotionally raw and didn't know if he could trust himself to hold against him if pushed. They waited a few minutes, ten or so, before they heard footsteps and Dumbledore entered into the room. "Ah," he said. "Did all go well?" "Yes, sir," said Harry, nodding and blushing. Draco nodded, gritting his teeth a bit to control himself when Harry blushed, but not trusting himself to speak. "Very good," Dumbledore said, smiling. Harry glanced at Draco very quickly. "Erm, we were just wondering ... if maybe we could just have time to, er look things over ourselves before we show anyone else what happened." Dumbledore frowned a bit. "That would be all right," he said understandably. "Although you may need to look it over quickly. I'm not sure how long I'll be able to allow you both to sleep in the same room." Draco's eyes narrowed, and he scowled in response. "By wizarding law, you may not have a choice," he answered coldly. Dumbledore's eyes sparkled behind his glasses. "Please, Draco," he said courteously, "tell me what you know." Draco crossed his arms over his chest, pressing the parchment in his pocket to his heart in the process. "During the Triwizard Tournament, Potter's name was entered against the rules. Even though he was underage, because of the magically binding contract, you had to let him compete. This is the same type of contract. Whether you consider us of age or not, school rules or not, we have entered into a magically binding contract that makes me both his property and his ... sexual partner. Our law supports the right of him to have me whenever and wherever he likes." Harry's eyes widened as he looked at Draco. Dumbledore's eyes continued to sparkle. "That is correct," he said calmly. "That is if Harry wishes for that to be the case. Harry?" Harry's eyes flashed to Draco again. "Erm, yeah. I'd want it like that," he said, not quite meeting Dumbledore's eyes. He didn't know why, but the old man's stare made him feel guilty. Dumbledore sighed quietly, but his eyes were still sparkling

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strangely. "Then that is that. I'm sure you will still explain the promise to Professor Snape, Professor McGonagall and myself when you are ready? It is still best to ensure your safety." "As Harry wishes," Draco said, nodding to Harry rather than Dumbledore. Harry wasn't quite sure what to do. Did Draco want to let the teachers see? He sighed. "I think we'll let you in on it," he said finally, not looking at Draco just in case he might see anger there. He couldn't deny Dumbledore this. The man really did care about him, and after all that had happened that year, and the fact that he was going to take Harry with him to find the next Horcrux, Harry couldn't tell him no. "I am tired," Draco said. "Can we go now?" Dumbledore looked at them both for a few more seconds and then nodded. "Yes, you should get your rest. I'm sure it's been a taxing evening," he added in that all-knowing way of his. Harry couldn't help but blush again. Draco inclined his head in a nod by way of goodbye to Dumbledore and looked at Harry to lead the way back to the hospital wing. "Good night, sir," Harry said quietly, walking across the room to the exit. Draco followed, barely controlling his smirk as they left. Once the door was closed behind him, he turned to face Harry, smirk growing into a grin. Harry smiled too. "You. Are. A. Genius," he said, pulling Draco to him. Draco sighed into Harry's arms and kissed the other boy. They, once again, snogged the entire trip on the staircase, and Harry didn't want to let Draco go at the end of it, but he hopped off and turned to wait for Draco to join him. Draco walked with Harry down through the halls, unable to keep from smiling the entire way back to the infirmary. Once inside the room, Harry fell backwards on the bed and sighed. "Bloody genius," he said, shaking his head. Draco laughed happily and leant against the door, arms across his chest as he looked down at his lover. "Finally realised that, did you?" he asked.

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"I think so," Harry said, smiling. He sat up. "You're not mad at me for telling him that wed still let them know what's going on, are you?" he asked uncertainly. Draco cocked his head, considering. He reached in and pulled out the parchment. "Well," he began, walking over to sit on the bed with Harry, "I wouldn't hand them this unless we have to, but I can write up the basics of the contract for them. If it were going to be an issue, we would have to register the contract at the Ministry anyway." "Do we have to register the contract?" Harry asked fearfully. "What if Voldemort finds out? That'd put you more in danger him knowing that you're with me." Draco sighed, and looked down into his lap. "I don't think that will be in issue. My birthday is less than a month away, and you would have a moon cycle to register it." Harry scowled. "The next time you say that, I'm going to hit you," he said angrily. "I've already said I'll figure out a way to get that thing off your arm and I mean it. I don't break promises." Draco shook his head and looked sadly at Harry. "Do you want to know the provisions of our contract?" Harry looked at Draco angrily for a second longer and then nodded. "Yeah, come sit closer?" Draco slipped his shoes off and brought one leg up onto the bed so that he could face Harry and touch him at the same time. Harry looked at him expectantly. Draco was the one with the parchment. Draco still held the scroll but wasn't looking at it. "Well, you do understand that it is a one-way contract in that nearly all of the provisions give you power over me, right?" Harry nodded. "Well, obviously. I can tell you what to do." "By wizarding law, it is more than that," Draco said. "It would give you complete authority over me. Neither my parents nor my godfather have any authority over me anymore." Harry's mouth dropped open slightly. "So you're like my houseelf?" he asked incredulously. "In a manner of speaking, of course," he added quickly. The blond grimaced. "I don't even want to think of a house-elf in the terms you put this contract, Harry." "Ew, Draco, that's terrible," he said, thinking of Dobby and

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shivering. "So, what else?" "Hey, that's what I was saying." Draco smirked. "It's actually very close to a very old type of contract a concubine. In it, you took not only the right to me sexually, but exclusively." Harry raised an eyebrow. "So ... you can't have sex with anyone else ... ever?" he asked. "Only me?" Draco wasn't sure whether to be upset or happy, so he went for neutral. "Yes." He pointed to a couple lines in the parchment. "Only you." "Wow," Harry said, nodding. "That's that's pretty powerful," he said, quite a bit pleased actually. He wanted Draco all to himself forever. Draco smirked a bit at Harry's obvious pleasure in this part of the contract. He moved his finger down the parchment, leaning into Harry as he did so. "This is the line that seems to be causing the most ... trouble." Harry looked down. "What?" he asked. "These two lines are a bit complex," Draco said, smirking. "By saying that you could fuck me all day long, you seem to have made yourself able to do just that, when you want to." Harry smirked too. "So that's why I've been able to get hard no matter what you do! Like in the shower. Merlin, I thought I wouldn't get hard for the rest of my life and then ... it happened anyway." Harry laughed. "I don't see a problem with that one though." Draco snorted, but smiled as well. "Well, yes, luckily you said 'could' in there which gives you a choice, or it would have been very, uhm, difficult. The next line is the one that I think is related to my passing out. See here where you said that I would 'need it to live'?" Harry winced. "Erm, sorry about that," he said, scratching the back of his neck. "I didn't realise I would've never said it if I'd known." Draco shook his head, smiling. "Since I would be dead already if you hadn't, I don't think you would really want to change it. Would you?" Harry frowned. "That's what kept you alive?" Draco pursed his lips. "This is where it gets murky. I think that it is part of it. It implies that as long as you keep" he laughed "fucking me, I live. But it might not be the only component. What we

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were thinking at the time of the binding may also affect it. Or things you said to me afterwards." Harry nodded. "Well, you wrote down everything, right? Obviously not what we were thinking, but all the other stuff." "Yes, we have that," Draco said, "but I also remember flashes of things I was feeling and thinking at the time. Let me study the books and I might have a better answer. In the meantime, if you want me to live, you will just have to keep it up, so to speak." He grinned at the other boy. "That obviously won't be a problem," Harry said, smirking. "As long as we aren't separated for too long." Draco nodded. He stood up and began undressing. "You have class tomorrow and will have to fuck me before you go again," he said, smiling happily. "I think I can do that," Harry said, grinning, watching Draco undress. Draco was aware of Harry watching him and loved it. He glanced up at him as he did. "You sleeping in your clothes ... love?" Harry smiled possibly the biggest smile ever. "No," he said, jumping up happily and beginning to strip as well. Draco didn't even bother with his nightclothes this time, climbing into bed naked and waiting for Harry. Harry finished undressing and shrugged, leaving off his pyjamas as well. He slid into bed next to Draco and hugged him close. "Mmm, I love you," he said with a content sigh. Draco sighed at the blissful feeling of Harry's skin against his own. He really was tired, and there was nothing more comforting to him. "I love you, too," he answered, closing his eyes.

CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

Snake in the Lions Den


May 8 Harry couldn't believe what McGonagall had told him after class. Draco Malfoy staying in Gryffindor? In Gryffindor? Merlin, so many things were wrong with that. It made Harry sort of happy to know that they would be able to stay back in his common room; he had been missing it, and he'd been missing seeing Hermione at least. What would she have to say about all this? What would Ron have to say? Harry winced at the thought of that. But worst of all, what would Draco have to say? Harry was sure he wouldn't be happy. He finally reached the door to Draco's hospital room and opened it. He stepped inside quietly and shut the door behind him. Draco sat cross-legged on the bed, surrounded by books and parchment. He had finished his homework by noon again and had spent the afternoon researching magical binding agreements. He smiled when Harry came in, but spent a moment finishing the notes he was taking. There was a smudge of ink on his lip where he had obviously been tapping the quill against it while thinking. Harry couldn't help but smile a little at the sight of Draco. The ink on his lips made him chuckle. He walked a bit closer to the bed and dropped his robes off to the floor. "Hey," he said, reaching in and ruffling Draco's hair. Draco rolled his eyes. "My hair's going to look like yours if you keep doing that." He reached a hand up, grabbing Harry's and pulling him down for a kiss. Harry smiled against Draco's lips. "Did you make good progress today?" he asked, pulling away and moving to lean against the wall. He would put off telling his news for a bit. Draco leaned back on his arms and cocked his head, smiling. "Well, there is a lot of documentation to what I told the old man. And a lot about how to set up these bindings. They used to be used as marriage contracts. Still are in some families."

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"Wow," Harry said, eyebrows high on his forehead. "We're not married though ... right?" Draco raised his eyebrows and looked at Harry for a moment. "What is your definition of marriage, Potter? "Erm, being together forever?" Harry said slowly. Draco sighed. "Like I said last night, what we did seems to most closely resemble a concubine contract. Which makes someone the sexual servant of the other." He frowned. "It does not give the servant the usual rights of marriage though. No right to inherit. No mutual bind on the other person." Harry frowned too. "Well, what if we really got married? I mean we could I mean, but not right now I mean, you know, just like maybe later?" he stammered. Draco looked up. His eyes widened and his mouth dropped open. "You would want that?" he asked. Harry bit his lip. "Yeah," he said quietly. Draco's chin dropped to his chest. He was breathing hard suddenly and squeezing his eyes shut not to start bawling again. Harry's eyebrows pulled together, and he moved forward quickly. "Draco?" he asked quietly, reaching out a hand to touch him. Draco shuddered and a couple tears escaped after all. Harry bit his lip again and dropped onto the bed, scattering papers. He pulled Draco to him and held him tightly. "Would you marry me?" he whispered into his ear. Draco shuddered, giving over to the crying instead of fighting it. He gripped the other boy's shirt tight. "I wish I could," he managed to whisper. Harry's eyes fell closed as they welled with tears now too. "I will marry you," he said fiercely. "I swear I will." Smiling, Draco managed to pull himself together. He took a deep breath and wiped his face with the edge of the bed cover. He smiled softly at Harry. "So, how was your day?" he asked, needing a change of subject. Harry rubbed furiously at his eyes with his hands so that they were a bit red when he stopped. He took a large breath as well and cleared his throat. "Erm ... it was all right," he said after a few seconds. "McGonagall told me where they're going to move us." "Really?" Draco smirked. "That was fast."

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Harry grinned, despite being terrified of telling Draco what he was going to tell him. "Yeah, it was. You must have some special powers or something." The blond rolled his eyes. "My father made sure I know the law. It comes in handy when you want to get your way." He started collecting up the parchment on the bed and shoved playfully at Harry who was sitting on several. Harry moved so that Draco could gather up the papers. "Erm, so you want to know where we're staying?" he asked, not looking at Draco, but studying his nails. Draco stopped at the tone in the other boy's voice and raised an eyebrow. "What's wrong, Potter?" "Oh, nothing's wrong," Harry said quickly. "McGonagall told me erm, well, she just said that we'll be staying in Gryffindor," he said as casually as he could. He went still, waiting for the explosion. Dracos face froze. Then he looked at Harry, trying to decide if he could really mean what he had just said. He huffed and sat back, realising that Harry was indeed serious. "I'm a Slytherin," he said firmly. Harry winced. "Well, yeah, I know, and you'll still be it's just that, since we can't be apart, we have to have somewhere to stay." Draco shook his head and smirked. "I suppose your dorm mates will be getting quite a sexual education then." "We aren't staying in the dorm, thank Merlin," Harry said, surprised that Draco wasn't as angry as he'd thought he would be. "They set up a room in Gryffindor Tower." "With strong Silencing Charms, I hope." Draco shook his head, grinning at Harry. "At least it's not Hagrid's hut." Harry sighed with relief. "I thought you were going to freak out," he said. "I may yet," Draco said quietly. "And the rest of the Gryffindors?" Harry frowned. "What do you mean?" "The snake in the lion's den? Oh, that's going to go over well. Has anyone told them?" Draco asked, leaning back with his hands behind his head. "No, I don't think so," Harry said. "They'll all be ... well, actually, I'm not exactly sure what they'll do, but it's none of their business

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anyway." "Potter, do you ever think about why we have passwords to our House areas?" Draco asked in a weary tone. Harry winced. "Well, I'll be there, so nothing will happen," he said, although he knew that wasn't very likely. Draco raised an eyebrow and smirked. "Because we will all play nice if you are there?" Harry sighed. "Okay. You get on with me just fine, so I know it's possible for you to be friendly with a Gryffindor. Just try not to say anything that you know would make them angry. I know they might not do the same for you, but it'll make things easier." Draco huffed, but began picking up the rest of the things on the bed and stowing them in his book bag. "You do realise this means everyone, and I do mean everyone, in the wizarding world will know about this by tomorrow?" Harry let out a long breath. "Yeah, Colin Creevey and his dreaded camera are in my House." "We will be front page of the Prophet." Draco shook his head, standing before the room's small mirror and combing his hair. He didn't have much more with him than the clothes and his bag. He turned to Harry. "Ready when you are." "You're ready to leave the hospital wing?" Harry asked, a bit taken off guard that Draco was ready to leave so soon. "Is there anything I can do here that I can't do there?" Draco smiled. "I mean, I eat, sleep, study and fuck you." He grinned at the last part. Harry smirked. "Well, I guess," he said. "Are you going to go back to classes tomorrow then?" Another huff and a head tilt. "I suppose. It's not like there's any point to it, but I guess they'll insist." Harry groaned. "Ugh, Draco, I swear!" he said exasperatedly. "Let's not talk about that right now. Let's just go and tell Pomfrey we're leaving and get this whole thing over with." Twenty minutes later they stood before the portrait of the Fat Lady. Draco crossed his arms over his chest and looked at Harry. His face said what he thought of a place guarded by this particular portrait. Harry rolled his eyes at Draco and gave the password. The Fat

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Lady swung open, eyeing Draco's Slytherin robes suspiciously. Harry took a huge breath and let it out slowly. "Ready?" he asked, looking into the portrait hole. Draco peered in then gestured forward. "Definitely after you." Harry nodded and squeezed Draco's hand for a second before climbing up and into the Gryffindor common room. When Harry stepped through, there were several shouts of welcome and a few people got up to ask him where he had been. About a dozen students were lounging or studying around the room, including Hermione and Ron. But when Draco stepped in behind Harry, the entire room grew instantly quiet. Harry sighed and looked around at everyone. "Erm, hey," he said. No one said anything; they all continued to stare at Draco. Hermione was looking at both boys with wide eyes, and Ron looked like he wanted to get up and hit something just at the sight of Draco. "What the fuck are you doing here?" he called from the table he was sitting at. Draco leant against the edge of the opening they had just come through, arms across his chest and one eyebrow raised. He glanced at Harry, waiting for him to try to explain this. They were his Housemates after all. Harry immediately went defensive at Ron's words. "Maybe if you'd shut your fucking mouth I could explain," he said angrily. A few people looked very confused that Harry Potter and Ron Weasley were talking to each other like that. Harry sighed and rubbed his face with his hands. "Draco and I are going to be staying here," he said, trying his best to be calm. "What the fucking hell!" Ron yelled. Hermione glared at him. "What's going on?" Seamus asked, eyebrows raised. Harry took another great breath. "Draco-and-I-are-together-andwe're-bound-so-he-has-to-stay-with-me," he said very, very quickly. Everyone looked at him like he was insane. "Er, what?" Seamus asked, eyeing Draco like he was something nasty and dirty. "Draco and I are together, and we're bound and so he has to stay with me," Harry repeated more slowly. Nearly everyone's mouths dropped and eyes widened. Hermione winced, and Ron turned red with anger.

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Harry noticed Ginny standing off to the side, her eyebrows pulled together in a frown. "Together?" Neville asked very quietly, going white. "Erm, yeah, as in we're ... lovers?" Everyone's mouths opened wider. Draco's face was impassive, bored looking even. He held his tongue and nearly his breath as Harry started explaining. He watched the room carefully, noting every reaction and who would be a problem. He couldn't help the twitch of a smile when Harry said they were lovers. "What!" Seamus said incredulously. Ron got up and stomped up the boys' staircase. Harry closed his eyes to try and hide the hurt he felt. "You're gay, Harry?" asked Lavender from a nearby table. "With him?" asked Parvati. Harry sighed heavily. "No, I'm not does it matter?" he asked like he was talking to a five-year-old. Quite a few people looked like it mattered quite a bit. "Gryffindors," Draco couldn't help but mutter, shaking his head. "Black and white thinking again." "What the bloody hell?" Seamus asked. "What is going on, Harry?" Ginny piped in suddenly. He looked at her and bit his lip, feeling guilty somehow. Was it really only a week ago that he'd felt so strongly for her? "I already told you," he said. "Draco and I are together. We're bound and it's very complicated, and we don't even know everything about it yet. He has to stay with me, or he might die." Some people looked like they didn't care much. Draco pushed off from the frame and stood up, stepping up beside Harry. "It means there is a magically binding contract between Harry and myself. Until the issue is ... resolved, we must remain together. So the Headmaster decided Gryffindor was the better option of where to put us." Everyone sneered as Draco talked. They all looked to Harry. "It's true," he said, nodding. "But he's a Slytherin!" Seamus said loudly. Dean nodded beside him "What if he's working for You-Know-Who, Harry?" Neville

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asked seriously, colouring a bit as he looked at Draco. "I knew this would come up," Harry muttered to himself. "He's not," he said firmly, looking around at everyone. "I know he's not." Draco raised an eyebrow and looked at Harry. Okay, he supposed he wasn't really, but it was definitely a grey area. Maybe Gryffindor black and white thinking would help them after all. Not knowing if his help would actually hinder, and feeling a bit self-conscious in the Lion's Den, he crossed his arms and said nothing. Everyone looked at Draco suspiciously. "Look, I wouldn't be with him if I thought he was going to hurt me," Harry said, using the same words he had used with Hermione. "I know it's a lot to ask, but you're all going to have to deal with it. We're staying here." "In the dorm?" Seamus asked quickly, making a face. "No," Harry said with a sigh. "There's a room set up for us." Dean, Seamus and Neville all sighed with relief. Harry rolled his eyes. Everyone was silent for a moment, still looking at Harry like he was mad. "I believe you, Harry," Hermione said suddenly, getting to her feet and coming to stand next to him. Harry smiled at her. Draco cocked his head, looking at Granger, and then nodded to her. He looked around the room trying to size up who else were Harry's real allies. "I do too, Harry," Ginny said loudly. Neville sighed. "Me too," he said. Seamus looked at Draco for a minute, still making a face. "Whatever," he said, and shrugged, turning and walking up the boys' staircase. Dean shrugged as well, making a face still, but he gave a short nod before following Seamus. A few other people said that they too believed Harry; Colin and Dennis Creevey, Katie Bell and a few younger students Harry really didn't know. Most people just stared. Draco leaned toward Harry a bit and said in a low voice, "Now that the show is over, can we find the room?" Harry sighed and nodded. "Yeah," he muttered. He turned to Hermione. "Talk to you later."

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She nodded and squeezed his arm. He smiled at her and grabbed Draco's hand. "Thanks," he said to the few people who had supported him. They nodded and Harry began leading Draco over to the boys' staircase. "McGonagall said if we just keep walking, the room should be at the top," he said. He frowned heavily when they passed the sixth year dorm. He could hear Ron yelling inside. Draco allowed himself to be led up the stairs by his hand, watching the stares of the others when Harry touched him. He shook his head as they passed the room where he heard Ron yelling, and was very grateful when they reached the quiet of the private room. It was a lot better than the hospital, if you could handle the fact that it was decorated in gold and green. At least it had a double-wide canopy bed, which he happily fell back on. Harry lay down next to Draco and rested his hands on his stomach. "It didn't go too badly, I guess," he said. "At least most of my friends were okay with it ... or at least semi-okay with it." He closed his eyes. Why did Ron have to be such a bastard? Harry hated that he missed him. Draco snorted. He realised he hadn't spoken to anyone from his House since all this began, not even Pansy. That was going to be ugly. He reached his hand up and began playing with Harry's hair. Harry sighed. "What now?" he asked, eyes still closed. Draco pulled gently on the strand in his fingers. "Well, I'm hungry and, at some point, we should eat food too," he said with a smirk. Harry raised an eyebrow. "Not even a minute has gone by and you already want to break the bed in?" He smirked as well. Draco laughed. "Don't you?"

CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE

Wishes Are For Babies


"Yeah," Harry said, rolling to straddle Draco's hips. He smirked down at him. "Hmmm, what should we do?" he asked, waggling his eyebrows. Draco stretched his arms up over his head. "I am, quite literally, at your service." Harry's smirk grew. He rolled off of Draco again and sat up, eyes bright. "Stand up and take your robes off ... slowly." Draco laughed as the compulsion took over. "Potter?" he said with a smirk. Harry narrowed his eyes and smiled widely. "Now your shirt; take it off too," he demanded. Draco continued his slow strip tease, putting more grace into it than the compulsion required. "Harry," he continued, trying to get the other boy's attention. "Locking and Silencing Charms might be a good idea right now. It took a minute to realise what Draco had said and then Harry nodded quickly and grabbed his wand. When finished casting the charms, he tossed his wand onto the bedside table and pulled his own robe off, still watching Draco. "Take all your clothes off, but keep doing it that way," he said, heart beginning to pound a little harder. Draco smirked, relaxing into the spell's pull. He found when he didn't fight it, he was able to direct it better, allowing himself to tease and make it more fun. He enjoyed Harry's eyes on him and flushed at the feel of once again having the other boy's undivided attention. He was aroused long before he made it to his shorts, so he was quite the figure when he finally stood naked before his lover. Harry smiled at him. "Come here," he said, voice low. Draco did his best to walk in the same sexy way he had stripped and stepped to the bed where Harry sat. Harry licked his lips and got to his knees in an upright position. He began slowly undoing the buttons on his own shirt. "Touch

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yourself, Draco," he said, breath hitching. Draco gasped at the command and began to run his fingers along his own chest, teasing Harry. The command had been open enough that he could have put a finger on his nose and gotten away with it. Instead, he began to lovingly caress his own chest and nipples. Harry's eyelids fluttered and his fingers fumbled on his buttons as he watched Draco. His eyes travelled down Draco's body to rest on that gorgeous, erect, leaking cock, and he swallowed. He had to clear his throat before he could talk again. "Touch your cock, Draco," he said, moving a bit quicker to remove his own clothes. Draco's breathing sped up as he gently ran his hands down his body and began lightly caressing himself. He kept watching Harry's face, soaking up the desire he saw there. Harry swallowed again. "Oh, Merlin," he let out, hands flying now. He threw his shirt and made short work of his trousers and underwear, and then he was on Draco before another second went by. "Touch me," he whispered against his lips. "Gods, yes," Draco gasped as one hand reached for Harry's cock and his other slid behind, grasping his arse. Harry ran his hands over every inch of Draco's skin he could reach. He would never get used to him, he would never tire of him, and he could do this forever. He could make Draco happy forever. He let his tongue out slowly to meet with Draco's, whimpering into his mouth. Draco shook as Harry's hands caressed over his body. He kissed and sucked at Harry's lips and met his tongue with his own. "Let me make love to you, Draco, please," Harry whispered, moaning slightly at the feeling of Draco's hands on him. "Yes," Draco gasped. "However you want it, Harry." Harry pushed Draco down onto the bed. He kissed and sucked his way across his neck and collar and chest, taking the most care he had ever done to make it feel good. "Do you know how much you mean to me?" he asked, placing an open-mouthed kiss on Draco's right nipple. Draco arched, hands clutching at Harry's shoulders. "I am yours," he whispered. Harry smiled gently, and continued to make his way down Draco's body, tonguing his navel. "Always," he said, almost a sigh.

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"Yesss," Draco gasped, his hands in Harry's hair now and his head beginning to loll from side-to-side. Harry was breathing over Draco's erection now. He lowered his face so that it was pressed right into the blond curls at the base of it and let his tongue out just a bit to lick at it slowly. Draco's fingers in Harry's hair clenched, pulling at the thick locks as he arched under the sensations of Harry's teasing. Harry reached one arm up and rested it across Draco's stomach, still wanting to touch that beautifully smooth skin. He continued to lick and suck at just the base of Draco's cock. He brought his free hand around and rubbed the slippery head of it with his fingers, giving him just the lightest of touches. "Oh, Gods, Harry," Draco gasped, his fingers still entangled and his body shivering under the other boy. Harry finally grasped Draco's cock fully and he lifted his head. He faced it toward him and looked up at Draco. "So beautiful," he whispered, closing his eyes and kissing the head. Draco's eyes closed and he gasped, mouth open. "Please," he begged. Harry kissed the head of Draco's cock again, but then lowered his mouth over it, not being able to deny Draco or himself the pleasure of it any longer. Harry still didn't know if he was any good at this, but he wanted to do it anyway. He copied some things that Draco had done to him before, and he kept his hand closed around the base of Draco's cock this time. Pumping it over what he couldn't close his mouth on. "Oh, yes." Draco's words almost sounded like a sob as he trembled under Harry's mouth. Harry smiled a bit and then swirled his tongue around the head. Merlin, he loved the sounds Draco made. Loved them. He trailed his tongue down the side of Draco's cock, applying a bit of pressure. "Watch me, Draco," he whispered before lowering his mouth over Draco's cock again. Spoken as a command, Harry's magic propelled Draco's head up and his eyes open. He moaned loudly at the sight and pulled tighter against Harry's hair. Harry bobbed his head a few times, sucking up. He pulled away for a moment again. "I love your cock in my mouth," he said, licking

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and kissing the head. He swallowed it again and sucked up powerfully. "Fuck, yes," Draco gasped, his eyes following every movement of Harry's mouth. Harry worked his mouth furiously, actually feeling it starting to hurt a little, but he didn't slow down or ease up. It was all about Draco right then. Not another person existed in the world as far as Harry was concerned. The sight alone of Harry doing this might have made Draco come. The pleasure was building fast and could feel the pressure. "Harry, close," he gasped. Harry sped up and sucked harder, his cheeks hollowing. He groaned a bit and let his eyes fall shut, breathing heavily through his nose. Words were gone; Draco was moaning incoherently now, his hands clenching and unclenching in Harry's hair. He would have thrown his head back, but Harry's command held him in place, watching as he came in Harry's mouth. Harry swallowed as much down as he could, but it dribbled down his chin and he coughed a bit. He looked up at Draco, panting, mouth hanging slightly open. "Gods, Harry!" Harry looked amazing like that with Draco's come in his mouth. "Kiss me!" Harry crawled up Draco's body and did just that, his eyes sliding shut. He was so fucking hard it hurt. Draco's head fell back but his eyes stayed open, though he could blink them. He kissed Harry, licking and sucking his mouth. He reached his right hand between them and wrapped his fingers around Harry's erection. "Ah!" Harry cried into Draco's mouth, thrusting forward. "Oh, yes, love," Draco said, wrapping an arm around Harry's waist and rolling sideways so he could better watch and caress Harry. He slid long graceful strokes on the other boy's cock, rubbing the head with his thumb on the upstroke and squeezing gently on the down. "Faster, please," Harry gasped. He was already close from having sucked Draco off; he could feel it. Grinning, Draco increased his speed, watching Harry's face with

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awe as he did. Harry was gasping and moaning and thrusting all over the place now, desperate for that sweet release. He could feel it building up. "Ngh, Draco, oh Merlin, faster, please!" he cried. Draco was gasping, fisting Harry faster and holding him around the waist with his other arm. He kept his eyes on Harry's face, watching for that beautiful moment when he would release. Harry came then, crying Draco's name, his face scrunching up so that it almost looked like he was in pain and then relaxing completely. He clutched Draco to him, jerking and twitching. Draco wrapped both arms and one leg around Harry, pulling him tight against him, the feel of Harry's magic still vibrating over his skin. He smiled down into that beautiful face and began gently kissing it, starting at Harry's closed eyes and scattering kisses around his cheeks, nose, chin and finally his lips. Harry kissed back happily, if somewhat tiredly. He sighed and held Draco closer. "I love you," he whispered. He couldn't seem to say the words enough. "I love you, too," Draco whispered, then after a minute, "Can you release the command?" Harry opened his eyes, confused. "Command...?" he asked, but then he noticed how open Draco's eyes were. "Oh, you can stop watching now," he said, grinning. Draco sighed, closing his eyes for a moment. "And the other one?" He chuckled. Harry frowned, confused again. "What other one?" he asked. "To touch you." Draco grinned, opening his eyes again. Harry laughed a bit. "Oh," he said. "You don't have to touch me anymore either." If you say so, Harry." Draco smirked and held him tighter. Harry laughed and closed his eyes again, loving the feel of Draco's hands on his skin and just the feel of him all around. He really was perfect. Draco lay quiet, holding Harry, who seemed to be either asleep or getting close. Draco's attention was on his own arm and the 'bracelet. He supposed it would be pretty if he didn't know what it was. He had always liked the snake imagery of his House. Though he did prefer dragon images, for obvious reasons.

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Harry was falling asleep, Draco's warmth very comforting, but he forced himself to open his eyes, not wanting to fall asleep if Draco wasn't going to. Draco used his right hand to casually pet Harry's hair. He never tired of touching him. He used to imagine what those dark locks would feel like. Reality was even better. He sighed again, wishing he had had the courage to have kissed the other boy long ago. "What are you thinking about?" Harry asked quietly, beginning to run his hand down Draco's arm. "Your hair," Draco said quietly. Harry chuckled. "I've noticed you seem to like it a lot," he said, smiling. "Oh, yes." Draco sighed. "I always wondered if it was as thick as it looked." Harry shrugged. "Figures, one of the things I hate about the way I look is the thing you like. I used to only like my scar." He reached one hand up and traced said scar with his finger. "The only thing I didn't like," Draco murmured, pulling a sheet over them. He wasn't actually cold, but he wanted to cover the serpent on his arm. Harry sighed. "I've accepted what I have to do, who I am. I almost want to do it now." Draco nodded, but remained quiet. He suddenly felt so sad. Sad that he would miss everything that could be. They lay in silence for a few minutes, just touching each other. Harry sighed again. "It'll be all right," he said finally. This subject was so hard to talk about, but soon Harry knew that it would be the only thing he thought about. He was already starting to think of ways he could get a teacher to sign a note for him to use the Restricted Section. Maybe Snape would let him strangely enough. "I wish ..." Draco stopped. Wishes were for babies. There was only what one could make happen and what one couldn't. He winced at the sound of his father's voice in his own head. "You wish what?" Harry pressed, holding Draco tightly. "It doesn't matter," Draco said. Harry sighed. "Everything you think matters to me," Harry said simply. Draco smiled at him. "You are crazy anyway. I read that

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somewhere, you know." Harry rolled his eyes, but he smiled. "Perhaps I am." He sighed again. "Are you hungry?" Draco shrugged, but didn't move. Harry chuckled. "I'll take that as a...?" Draco raised an eyebrow and frowned. Harry shook his head. "Do you want to go down and eat or not, Draco? It's really not that difficult a question." "Then no," Draco answered sullenly. Harry sighed. "You should eat, you know," he said, but he pulled Draco closer to him at the same time. "Then bring me some food," Draco said with a laugh. Harry shook his head again and laughed. "This is becoming a routine thing," he said. "Sex and then I bring you something to eat." "Works for me." Draco smiled. "Besides, I always seem to get hungry after." "You want me to go all the way down to the Great Hall, get you some food, and come all the way back?" Harry asked disbelievingly. "You go eat dinner and just bring me back something," Draco said, sighing. Harry frowned. "No," he said. "If you don't come, then I don't want to go." "I guess we don't eat then." Draco sighed, closing his eyes. "Because I am not up to dealing with your House again let alone mine tonight. And I have no fucking clue where I am supposed to sit." Harry frowned. "Okay, fine then. We'll just eat a big breakfast. Where do you want to sit?" "In the Owlery?" Draco suggested. Harry rolled his eyes. "You have to eat somewhere." "So you keep telling me." Draco smirked. He Summoned his wand and did a Cleaning Charm on the mess they had made earlier. "Can't you get that nutty house-elf to bring us something, at least for tonight?" Harry raised his eyebrows. "I completely forgot about him," Harry said truthfully. "I guess I could." Draco smiled and kissed Harry on the forehead. "Thanks." Harry smiled and shrugged. "Kreacher?" he said loudly to the

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room. There was a loud pop and the smelly old house-elf was standing there, looking just as wonderfully rotten as always. "Master called?" he asked, his eyes widening when they fell on Draco. It was then that Harry remembered he had asked Kreacher to tail Draco. Draco frowned at the creature but didn't say anything. Harry sat up and made sure the sheets were covering everything on him that mattered. "Get Dobby, please," he said. He didn't trust Kreacher to get them food. Kreacher just continued to stand there, staring at Draco. He nodded, but still didn't move. "Master is in bed with the Malfoy boy. Kreacher is confused. The Malfoy boy is good, but Master is a filthy blood-traitor. Kreacher doesn't know ...." Draco stared in confusion at the creature in front of him. "Harry, what is this?" He gestured at the house-elf in question. Harry sighed. "My godfather's barmy house-elf," he said with disgust. "He was left to me when he... died. He turned to Kreacher again. "Yeah, I'm in bed with the Malfoy boy," he said, rolling his eyes at the elf's muttering. "Go get Dobby now, please. And don't come back." Kreacher gave Draco one last long look before leaving with another loud pop. A few seconds passed and another crack filled the air. "Harry Potter!" Dobby squealed, not really looking at anything but Harry. Draco grimaced and watched in a kind of fascinated horror as one house-elf was replaced with another. He was losing his appetite. At least this one he remembered. "Hello, Dobby," Harry said, smiling. He had asked Dobby to tail Draco, too. He was waiting for when the elf would notice him. It didn't take but a few moments. Dobby's eyes grew very wide, even wider than they usually were. "Does you be wanting something, sir?" he asked, obviously confused and a bit horrified at the sight of Draco. Harry winced. "Erm, yes. It would be really wonderful if you could get me some dinner. I don't mean to intrude on whatever it was you were doing, but I didn't think you would mind."

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Dobby continued to stare at Draco like Kreacher had. "It is no trouble, sir!" he said quickly. "What would you be liking, sir?" "Anything really, just be sure to bring some dessert too, please. And bring Draco the same thing." Harry winced again. He felt a bit bad for calling the elf now. Dobby nodded and left again, leaving Harry and Draco alone. "Bollocks," Draco said, lying back against the bed and closing his eyes. "What's wrong?" Harry asked, raising an eyebrow. "That was ... weird," Draco said with a sigh. "Yeah, they are weird," Harry said, nodding. Dobby was back in minutes, carrying a huge tray filled with what must have been everything. "Erm, wow, Dobby. Thanks," Harry said, taking the tray the elf handed him. "Anything for Harry Potter," Dobby said, looking at Harry a bit confusedly. Harry sighed; he would have to explain things to the elf later, when Draco wasn't around. "Thanks, Dobby," Harry said pointedly. "Perhaps I'll talk to you some other time." "Yes, Harry Potter, sir, anytime you like!" Then he was gone with one final loud crack. Draco sat frowning and looking confused, but then shook himself. He reached for the tray. Harry placed it over both their laps and picked up a piece of chicken from it. "He brought us the entire kitchen," he said, taking a bite. "Good. Maybe we could hide up in the tower until the food runs out," Draco suggested. "Are you going to explain the weird house-elf thing?" "Explain what?" Harry asked innocently. Draco frowned. "Yes, right, because every student here has two house-elves at their beck and call. Not to mention one that hates you and one that adores you. If you aren't going to explain it, then don't. But don't lie to me." Draco sat back with his arms over his chest, no longer eating. Harry winced at Draco's tone, but was a bit relieved that he only

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wanted to know why Harry had the house-elves and not why they had both been staring at him so strangely. "I already said that Kreacher is mine. Dobby isn't, but he really does seem to like me. It's because I set him free, I suppose." And then he winced again, remembering just whom he had freed Dobby from. Draco raised an eyebrow. "So I remember. Father was quite angry." Harry swallowed. "Yeah, I know," he said quietly. Draco eyed his lover suspiciously. "And that's all there is to it?" Harry frowned. "All there is to what?" he asked, wondering what else Draco could want to know about the elves. Draco still wasn't eating. He stared at Harry. "I'm a Slytherin, Harry. I can tell a half-truth when I hear it." Harry sighed. Was he really that transparent? "I ordered them to tail you earlier in the year," he said resignedly. "You what?" Draco sputtered. "Well, I couldn't follow you all the time when you were in the Room of Requirement. I had to get someone to watch you while I wasn't able to," Harry said. He cleared his throat awkwardly. Draco looked at him for a minute in sheer bewilderment. Then he started laughing, and kept laughing. Harry raised an eyebrow, utterly confused. "What?" he asked. Draco rolled onto his side, curled around himself, and lay there giggling. Harry just continued to stare at him, holding the tray steady so that it wouldn't spill. When the laughing didn't stop, he reached one hand over and prodded Draco in the back. "What?" he asked again, wanting to know what Draco was laughing at. What had he said that was so funny? Draco finally wound down, gasping for breath and still giggling a bit. He rolled over and lay there looking up at Harry. "You were so obsessed with me that you had two insane house-elves following me? And you ask me what is funny?" Harry rolled his eyes and shook his head. "Well, in my defence, I did want to know what you were up to." "And you accused me of being mental." Draco chuckled some more and reached for some food. Harry gave him a playful shove. "I'm not mental," he said,

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grinning. "If I hadn't been so obsessed, I wouldn't have ever walked in on you in the bathroom, and we wouldn't be here right now." "Do you think anyone in your common room out there would say that you aren't mental?" Draco asked, shaking his head. "You followed me around all year and now you are publicly declaring me your lover?" Harry shrugged. "I didn't fancy you," he said. "I really didn't, and if I did, I hadn't ever given it any thought. I just knew that you infuriated me. And then you started acting all weird this year and I just had to know why. No one would listen to me, and I wanted to bloody scream." "Well, I always did want your attention." Draco shook his head. Harry shrugged again and leaned over to kiss Draco lightly. "You certainly have it now," he said, smiling. "You really should have kissed me sooner instead of being a gigantic prat all the time. We could've been shagging since fourth year." "Why fourth year?" Draco grinned. "Because I hardly want to think about thirteen-year-olds shagging," Harry said, grinning lopsidedly. "We could've been messing around before then even." He sighed. "But no, you had to be a great bloody git and wait all the way until sixth year. You should've just kissed me in the cloak shop." He paused. "Actually, I probably would've hit you." "I did everything but drool on you then." Draco sighed. "And the irony is that after you refused to take my hand back in first year, I wasn't ever going to risk it again. Knowing that one is dying is strangely liberating in some ways. What could it hurt? " Harry sighed. "Once again with the dying," he muttered, but he ignored it. "You have to admit," he said fairly, "you did insult Ron for no reason at all, and then you ordered Crabbe and Goyle to take our food. You were a spoilt brat." He shoved Draco playfully again. "Still are." "Yes, evil brat. Tired evil brat who is actually supposed to go to classes tomorrow. And will need a good shag in the morning before breakfast." Draco smirked, having eaten and now curled up on his side on the bed. Harry smiled and awkwardly moved the tray to the floor. He curled up next to Draco and kissed his pointy nose. "Yeah, I'm tired

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too," he said, following up with a big yawn. "Good," Draco said sleepily, reaching to cuddle Harry. He nuzzled Harry's hair with his face. "I love you."

CHAPTER TWENTY-FOUR

Friends Like These


May 9 Harry rolled off Draco and lay flat on his back next to him, panting. "How is it so good every single time?" he asked happily. Draco reached a hand to lay on Harry's arm, not really thinking clearly enough for words yet. "You," he finally answered, closing his eyes. Harry's smile grew. He leant over and kissed Draco's forehead. "I think we both do a pretty good job," he said. "Definitely." Draco sighed, turning on his side and snuggling up against Harry. Harry sighed too and put an arm around Draco. "I don't want to, but we have to get up soon," he said quietly, frowning a bit. Draco rolled onto his back again. "I suppose I can't just hide in here for a few more weeks," he grumbled, and he looked around for his robe. His things had been moved from the Slytherin dorms. "No, you can't," Harry said, watching Draco for a moment before getting up to find his own robe. He caught sight of himself in a mirror in the corner of the room. "Bloody hell! I look like I've got some sort of skin disease," he said with a laugh. There were bite marks and hickeys all over him, some in some very questionable places. That made Draco laugh and he joined Harry next to the mirror. "Well, whatever you have, I have it even worse. Harry laughed even harder and looked at Draco. "True," he said happily. He found his bathrobe and pulled it on and then he frowned. "Oh, Merlin, I hope Ron's showered already," he said with a grimace, the marks on his body not seeming so funny anymore. "I don't bloody well care," Draco said, and then he sneered, grabbing his toiletries and towel. "I don't like the way he is treating you." Harry winced. "I don't either, but ..." He sighed. "Maybe you're

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right. He is being an arsehole. I just wish he weren't." He picked up his own bathroom necessities and sighed again. "Ready?" Draco nodded and used his wand to remove the Locking Spell and open the door. "Wait a minute," he said suddenly. He walked over to his trunk and pulled out one of his older dark shirts. He ripped the arm out of the sleeve and wrapped and tied the fabric over the binding serpent. He shrugged and put the robe back on. Harry frowned at him. "And what do you think they'll think that is?" he asked, standing at the door and holding it open for Draco. "Don't really care what they think," Draco said. "As long as they don't actually know what's there, that is all that matters." Harry sighed. "I guess," he said with a shrug. He led them to the boys bathroom and stepped inside quietly. It was, of course, full of people, but Harry tried his best to ignore them and moved silently to one shower that no one was anywhere near. He could feel the eyes on him, and it made him very uncomfortable. Draco strode in like he owned the place, head held high and face impassive. He noted reactions, but didn't react himself. He hung his robe on a peg and stepped into the shower. He loved the feel of hot water on his body and closed his eyes to the others. Harry wondered how on earth Draco had come to be able to hold his emotions back so efficiently; he certainly couldn't. Harry hung his robe up as well and turned the water on. He could feel his face growing red and the other boys still watching him. He heard a loud snort of disgust from one side of the room, and even without looking he knew who had done it. He tried his best to ignore it and began washing very quickly. Draco took his time, using the shampoo he had brought with him. It was, in fact, a potion that Snape had taught him how to make. He then worked his way thoroughly down his body. When he did look up it was only at Harry. Harry finished washing as fast as he could. He waited for Draco to get done before actually turning the water off, still not looking anywhere around the room. Draco finally finished and turned off the water. The armband was soaked but he ignored it. He toweled dry and put on his robe. He looked at Harry and then nodded toward one of the sinks. Harry nodded too and put his robe on also. He noticed that while

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most of the boys were still staring at them, they were avoiding them. He was thankful for that, even though he wasn't used to the alienation. He readied his toothbrush and stuck it in his mouth. "... can't believe they let that poncy git in here. Why didn't they just make him stay down in Slytherin? Isn't that the whole point of having Houses?" Harry's head shot up at that, and he looked over to see Ron, Seamus and Dean standing two sinks away, talking loudly. He glared at them. Ron looked up and met his glare. "What the hell are you staring at?" he asked heatedly, eyes narrowed. Harry yanked his toothbrush out of his mouth. "I know you don't want him to be here, but just fucking ignore it. You don't have to make a scene everywhere you go." Draco laid his wand on the little shelf above the sink, very clearly at ready if needed, and was combing out his hair. It had gotten considerably longer this year as he had not bothered to have it cut. He laid his hand on Harry's arm when he started to yell. Harry noticed Draco's hand, and it calmed him a little, but Ron was still staring at him and he couldn't push his anger away. "You're fucking mental!" Ron said, his voice growing louder. "One minute you're my best friend, trying to figure out if Malfoy's doing anything for You-Know-Who! And the next, you're acting like a fucking insane queer who's fucking Ferret Face over there! What the hell's wrong with you!" Harry actually began shaking, his face going red with anger. "Maybe if you hadnt been such a fucking arsehole the past few days, I could've explained to you what was going on. But all you care about is yourself. God forbid anything happen to your happy little world!" Ron was red now too. "My happy little world? What the fuck, Harry? You act like I haven't risked my neck for you dozens of times! You act like I haven't almost died for you! And now you go off and shack up with him? One of the people involved in all that Dark shit? Fuck you if you want to die because you're thinking with your prick!" Harry was shaking very hard now. He felt like he was going to jump at Ron. "It is odd," Draco drawled, his hand on Harry tightening a bit. "Here you are, best friends and willing to risk your neck for him so

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many times." He cocked his head and looked at Ron. "But now that he has a pretty clear idea of what I have been doing, you don't even want to ask him." Ron turned to Draco. "Don't you fucking even speak to me!" he yelled. "You're the one who's probably brain-washed him! I wish you'd fucking leave us the hell alone! But you can never get enough, can you, you fucking shirt-lifter? Happy that you've got what you wanted now?" Harry did take a single step toward Ron, but amazingly held back. He didn't know how long he could though; if Ron said one more thing .... Draco set his comb down and picked up his wand, not aiming it, but holding it to his side, his other hand still on Harry's arm. Draco met Ron's eyes straight on and smiled. "Yes, yes, I am." That was probably one of the worst things Draco could've done. His calm attitude set Ron off and he dove at him, but Harry flung himself forward and grabbed Ron before he could get at Draco. They fell to the floor, a wrestling, kicking, punching, screaming mass of limbs. Draco's wand was already at ready and pointed as the two hit the floor. He cast a silent Body-Bind, aiming for Ron, but figuring getting both wouldn't hurt. Harry and Ron stopped moving immediately, both breathing heavily. Harry was so mad that he wanted to scream at Draco for stopping them fighting. Draco took a big breath and glanced around the room to see if any of the other boys intended to make a move. Everyone was staring open-mouthed at Harry, Draco, and Ron. Not even Seamus seemed to have anything to say. No one moved; no one even blinked. Harry lay on the floor, still breathing heavily, staring up at Draco angrily and wondering when the hell he was going to take the spell off. When he was sure that no one else would make a move, Draco stepped forward and crouched beside the two figures. He knew they could still hear and see him. "If you two continue this, the Dark Lord will destroy you both." He looked around the room at the others. "You think this is a fucking game. He will tear you all apart." He

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stood and did a silent Finite on Harry, releasing him from the bind. Harry got to his feet, chest heaving. "Take it off him," he spat, and then he grabbed his stuff and left the bathroom, knowing that he wasn't going to be able to stay there with Ron standing again. Draco picked up his own things, and then looked at Ron and the others. "If this is how you treat your so-called Chosen One and friend, maybe I was better off as your enemy." He released the spell and walked from the bathroom, back to the room he shared with Harry. Harry was sitting on the bed, head in his hands. He never wanted to see Ron again, never wanted to have to deal with that ever again. He didn't look up when he heard the door open and close. Draco set down his things before walking to stand in front of Harry. He stood looking down at him, unsure if Harry was angry with him as well as Ron. Harry could feel Draco's presence, but he still didn't look up. Draco stood staring at the top of Harry's head. He untied his robe, slid it off and then dropped to the floor on his knees. He knelt there looking up at Harry. "I am yours," he said quietly. Harry squeezed his eyes more tightly shut before chancing a glance at Draco. "Come here, please," he said softly. Draco stood up and then sat on the bed next to Harry. He put his arms around Harry and held him. Harry allowed himself to be pulled to Draco, and it was very needed in that moment. He still didn't make a sound, didn't say a word. He finally pulled himself together and just sat there, staring blankly ahead, still in Draco's arms. When Harry seemed calm, Draco stood up and moved in front of his lover. He pulled at Harry's hands. "Time to get dressed. We aren't hiding anymore." Harry took a big breath and nodded, still not saying anything. He stood up and took off his robe and then began to put his uniform on. After a while of moving around the room, he looked up at Draco. "Thank you," he said gently. "At your service," Draco said, making a kind of courtly bow before continuing finishing the knot of his tie. He came over to Harry and retied the other boy's tie as well, tsking a bit at Harry's sloppy knot.

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Harry smiled softly at Draco and allowed him to mess with his tie. "Where are you sitting for breakfast?" he asked, voice still quiet. Draco cocked his head. "I think it would be appropriate for me to sit with my House, since I am still a Slytherin," he began, "but I will be where you need me." Harry shrugged. "I don't mind if you want to sit with your House," he said. "Just as long as I can see you." "I have always sat where I had a good view of you." Draco smirked, putting on his robe and reaching for his books. Harry smiled and finished getting dressed as well. "Good then." Draco opened the door and stood waiting for Harry to go through, following him down the stairs. He made sure to school his features for the gauntlet that would be the day. Make it through the Gryffindor common room, then the Great Hall and then classes; it all felt completely overwhelming now. He held his head high though. No one would see the fear in him. That was what mattered, he told himself.

CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE

House Business
Harry moved through the common room quickly. He didn't see Ron anywhere, but most of the boys still knew what had happened. He could see the portrait hole and went a bit quicker, just wanting to get out of there, but someone called him. He stopped briefly and looked over his shoulder. It was Hermione. She rushed over to him. "Morning. Going to breakfast?" she asked. She obviously didn't know what had happened in the bathroom. It was surprising actually. "Erm, morning, Malfoy ... er, Draco?" she said oddly. Draco nodded his head. "Good morning ... Granger." He felt oddly formal calling her by any name. She smiled a bit and turned back to Harry. "Going to breakfast?" she asked again. "Yeah," Harry said, looking around for Ron. Hermione raised an eyebrow at Harry's voice. "What's wrong?" she asked slowly. Harry sighed. "It's nothing. I'm just hungry. Erm ... we're gonna go .... Coming?" Hermione frowned. "Actually I was going to wait for Ron. He's taking forever. You should wait too. I know he's being a prat, but you know he cares about you." Harry closed his eyes. "No I I'm just gonna go. Erm, I'll see you later." Hermione raised an eyebrow. She looked like she wanted to prod him for information, but she didn't. She just stared at him strangely. "Well ... okay ... see you at breakfast then ...." Harry nodded. "Yeah, bye," he muttered before climbing up into the portrait hole and waiting for Draco on the other side. Draco's face gave nothing away, but once they were past the portrait hole and out of anyone else's earshot, he moved a bit closer asking, "Why did you lie to her?"

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Harry shrugged. "She'll figure it out," he said simply, beginning to walk down the hall. Draco shook his head, but held his tongue. Most of his thoughts now turned to watching other students as they passed them, and to how he would handle his breakfast with his house. Just before they reached the entrance to the hall, he stepped a bit closer to Harry and said quietly, "Remember, at your service." Harry looked up at him and nodded, although he knew he would never call Draco to him. "Ready?" he asked. Draco nodded, gave him a brief smile, and then turned and strode into the room with his trademark swagger. The room had gone suddenly quiet as the two boys reached the door. Draco took his favourite seat at his table. The looks he was given by his fellow Slytherins ranged from shock to anger to curiosity. Harry watched Draco and resisted shaking his head. He walked over to the Gryffindor table and sat next to Ginny. She smiled at him. He smiled back weakly. Predictably, Crabbe was the first person to speak. "What're you doin' here?" he growled. There were a few snickers and a couple gasps as his audacity. Draco raised one eyebrow, only glancing disdainfully at the other boy. "Presumably eating what passes for food here," he answered. Every pair of eyes at the table watched him as he reached forward and put a scone on his plate. "Draco," Pansy purred, "we are so glad to see you. You had us all worried." She moved closer to Draco on the seat so that her thigh rested against his and smiled at him. "We heard some awful rumours." Harry began scooping eggs on his plate. He could feel the stares of the others, but he ignored them. "Morning," Ginny said next to him. Harry glanced at her. "Morning," he returned. "You all right?" Harry shrugged and nodded, his mouth full of eggs. She frowned a bit. "So ... are you really with Draco Malfoy?" Harry glanced at her again and nodded. He swallowed. "Yeah, I am." She nodded. "I do believe you, about him not being well, what

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we all assume he is." Harry smiled. "I appreciate that. A lot." Draco added cream to his scone and reached for his tea. He was not overly fond of pumpkin juice. "I am doing better," he assured her. She and several of the other students exchanged looks and she continued, apparently for all of them. "So were you in the hospital wing? What happened?" And your things are no longer in the dorm," Crabbe added, frowning. Draco picked up his scone, nibbling it for a minute before answering, "Yes, I was ill and in the hospital wing for several days." Pansy frowned, leaning in and placing her hand on his arm. "But they wouldn't let us visit you. Not even me." Neville wandered over now and sat across from Harry. "Hi, Harry," he said firmly, frowning down the table at some people who were staring. Harry smiled. He knew Neville was trying to prove that he didn't care what Harry was or whom he was with. "Hi," he said, his mood brightening a little. "I saw what happened in the bathroom," Neville said more quietly now. So much for being a mood-brightener. Harry sighed and shook his head. "He's a prat." "Who's a prat?" Ginny asked. "What happened in the bathroom?" "Ron," Neville answered seriously. "Oh, no." Ginny sighed. "What's he done now?" Draco reached for a strawberry with the arm that Pansy was touching, effectively dislodging her hand and giving the hint. She frowned at him. Draco ate the strawberry, using it to cover for time while he tried to come up with a plan. Finally, he sighed and put both hands on the table. "Let's get this over with," he said finally. "A lot has changed in the last week. Particularly, I will no longer be sleeping in our dorms. I am still a Slytherin and, for the time being, still a prefect. But I have entered into an unusual arrangement." There were mutters around the room and some smirks. Apparently some had heard the rumours already. Draco took another deep breath. He tried several different versions out in his head and most of them sounded ridiculous. How was he going to explain this?

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"We had a row," Harry said, not really wanting to talk about it. Neville snorted. "They did a lot more than have a row. They were Muggle duelling. Malfoy had to pull them apart." Ginny's mouth fell open. "You were Muggle duelling? With Ron?" Harry sighed again and nodded. "Yeah." "Why?" "Because he was being a bloody prat," Harry said angrily. Ginny raised her eyebrow at him as if to say, "Don't you talk to me like that, Harry Potter." Sorry," Harry said sheepishly. "He just made me really angry." "I am sharing a room, and yes, for the record, a bed, with Harry Potter," Draco said. There was full minute of silence before the uproar. Suddenly, everyone at the table was shouting, cursing or making rude comments. Other House tables around the room stopped to stare. Draco only caught the exact words from a few of them. "Potter?" Blaise sneered. What the fuck?" from Crabbe and "Traitor!" from Goyle. Pansy didn't actually say anything. She pulled away and burst into tears. Harry had just been about to explain what exactly Ron had done when he heard the uproar. His head snapped up quickly, and he searched the Slytherin table for Draco. He sat on edge, ready to pounce if something should happen. "Looks like he's just told them," Ginny said, staring at the Slytherin table as well. Draco let them shout for a couple minutes. He stood abruptly and spoke in a tone of absolute command, loud enough to be heard but not exactly shouting. "Silence!" He punctuated the word with a single slap to the table. The effect was breathtaking. The entire hall fell silent. Draco scowled for a minute. Then retook his seat. "If you have questions, I will be available to answer them after classes today. Until then, remember who I am and hold your tongues." With that, he picked up the scone and began to eat. It tasted like wood, but he forced himself to chew it as if it was the best thing he had ever eaten. There were some general mutterings but then things settled down. No one spoke to him the rest of breakfast. Which suited him just

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fine. Harry's mouth fell open when he watched what Draco did. If he'd stood up and done that, his entire House would've died laughing. He looked at Ginny and Neville. They were both looking surprised too. "He has quite a lot of influence, doesn't he?" asked Ginny. "I suppose," Harry said, still looking at Draco. At that moment, Hermione showed up and sat on Harry's left. She looked angry. Ron came in seconds later and sat quite a few seats down, scowling. "He is such a prat," Hermione said angrily. "Why didn't you tell me what happened?" Harry shrugged. "I just wanted to get out of the common room before he came down." Draco pretended indifference as he sat eating his scone and sipping his tea. But his eyes narrowed when Weasley stalked into the room. He sat carefully keeping an eye both on his own House and the Gryffindor table. "Well, I certainly don't blame you! I cannot believe him! Why is he being this way?" said Hermione. "You'd have to ask him," Harry said stonily. Hermione sighed. "I'm not even going to try anymore. If he wants to talk to me again, he's just going to have to stop acting like a two-year-old." "I've never heard a two-year-old call someone an insane queer," Harry said bitterly. Hermione gasped a bit. "Oh, Harry, he didn't!" Harry sighed and shook his head. "It doesn't matter. I don't want to talk about it." Ginny rolled her eyes in Ron's direction. "You can stop talking to him, Hermione, but I won't," she said bitterly. She got up, stalked over to her brother and sat across from him. There were soon shouts from both of them before Ron got up and left the table completely. He seemed to be doing that a lot. Ginny came and sat back down with Harry. "Well, he's still being a prat, but if I know him, he'll come around." Harry watched Ron leave. "Yeah, whatever," he said quietly. Draco relaxed some when Weasley stormed out again. He shook his head. His Housemates had a lot to say on the subject of whom he

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was involved with, but not a single one of them had called him a poof. Gryffindors. He sighed. "Let's not talk about him anymore," Neville said firmly, smiling encouragingly at Harry. Hermione sighed. "Let's not," she agreed. "I know you've told me a bit already, but what is the whole deal with Malfoy?" Harry sighed and explained to his friends as best he could, which wasn't great, and by the time he was finished they still all looked sceptical. "Look," he said tiredly, "maybe you'll all understand a bit better when you've had the chance to talk to him." He was finished eating and was waiting for a signal that Draco was done too. Ginny raised her eyebrows. "Would he even be willing to talk to us?" "I'm sure he would be," Harry said uncertainly. "You sound confident," Neville said quietly. Harry sighed. "He really isn't the bloke you think you know. How could I stand him if he was?" "Whatever you say, Harry. Whatever you say," said Ginny, shrugging. Draco felt he would be sick if he tried to eat another bite. He sat sipping tea and looking at Harry. When he saw Harry look his way, he nodded, hoping he would know that meant he was ready. "Well, I'm off," Harry said, pushing his plate away. "Maybe I'll talk to you later." They all sighed. Hermione looked at him sadly and nodded. "Okay." "Don't stay away forever," Ginny said, raising an eyebrow. Neville nodded. "I won't," Harry said, getting to his feet and looking over at Draco. He squeezed Hermione's arm. Draco rose a few moments after Harry and followed him from the room. Harry waited outside the doors for Draco and sighed when he came through them. "Nice way of getting them to shut up," he said with a small grin. Draco smirked and raised an eyebrow. "Oh, it's just temporary. House policy. No airing inner-House dissent in public."

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"Where are you going to talk to them then?" Harry asked, stuffing his hands into his pockets to keep from grabbing Draco's hand. Draco noticed the gesturing, smiled, and moved slightly closer. "They may call a House meeting," he said. He gestured away from the doors. "Let's walk to class." Harry nodded and walked away from the doors. "You have House meetings?" he asked curiously. Draco raised an eyebrow, and glanced at him. "You don't?" Harry laughed. "No, we just say whatever we want whenever we want to say something." Draco shook his head, grimacing. "I see how well that works. We have more ... discipline in our House. House meetings are used to spell out the rules, assign tasks, sometimes air conflicts and set punishments." Harry's eyebrows rose. "That's so ... structured. We just sit around . Is it all set up by you lot? I mean, Snape doesn't make you do it or anything, right?" Draco snorted. "Can you see Snape wanting to bother with all that? Prefects run things. Snape only interferes if he doesn't like what we are doing." "That's so strange. We all sit around and just ... sit around. How is anything any fun in your House?" Harry asked, eyebrows still high on his forehead. Draco shook his head. "We don't have a House meeting every night. And we do have some pretty wild parties." Harry nodded. "We have parties, but nothing too wild. You know, nicking food from the kitchens and getting some Butterbeers, mostly after we win Quidditch games." "I'll just bet," Draco said with a laugh. They reached the Defence Against the Dark Arts class with no more trouble than stares and whispers. When they got there, Draco turned to Harry. "Do we sit together?" Harry shrugged. "I don't know. Ron isn't going to sit with me, so there'll be an empty seat. You can sit with me if you want to." He knew he sounded hopeful, and felt stupid for it. He knew he would have Draco all night later on. One side of Draco's mouth quirked up. "Do you really need to

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ask what I want?" Harry smiled. "Sit with me then. I'm sure Snape'll love it." Draco snorted, but nodded and followed Harry into the room, sitting beside him. The muttering was louder now that he had done that. Harry sighed and rolled his eyes. He was used to all the attention, but it was starting to get on his last nerve. "Isn't this driving you insane?" Harry asked Draco quietly, moving so that their legs and arms were touching. "You drive me insane," Draco whispered, barely moving his lips. Harry smirked and elbowed Draco playfully. "Don't start that now," he whispered back. Hermione came in then and sat on Harry's other side. She looked at both boys for a moment, but then shrugged and began taking her things out. Ron came in next and didn't look at Harry. He merely took the seat that he had been sitting in all week. Snape strode in and the room fell silent. He glanced up and scowled at the new seating arrangement before launching into class instruction. Draco had pulled out a scroll and began taking notes. It didn't take him long to realise that Snape was completely ignoring him. When he raised a hand to answer a question, he was not acknowledged. No praise or snide remarks. It was like he didn't exist. Harry took notes too. He knew the answers to the questions, but he didn't raise his hand. Snape would probably either ignore him or find something wrong with his answer. He felt bad for Draco, who Snape usually always called on. Draco stopped raising his hand when he realised what was happening. About halfway through class, he decided to push it. He stopped taking notes, setting his quill down and crossing his arms across his chest. To his astonishment, Snape continued to ignore him. Harry glanced at Draco and raised an eyebrow; he hadn't ever seen Draco not take notes. He would've asked him what he was doing, but Snape was glaring at him as usual and so he held his tongue. Draco sat with his arms crossed and a stony look on this face, staring at his godfather throughout the rest of the class. The

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stalemate seemed to hold. Class took forever it seemed. Harry could feel the tension as well; there was something going on between Snape and Draco, but he didn't know what. He was very relieved when the bell rang and he sat waiting for Snape to dismiss the class. Snape did dismiss the class, but Draco leant over and whispered to Harry, "You go on. I need to stay here for now." Harry frowned, but nodded. He had been thinking that this might happen. He squeezed Draco's hand quickly and got to his feet, gathered up his things, and followed Hermione out. Draco stood in the middle of the classroom, arms still crossed, and waited. The older man was fussing about with scrolls and other things on his desk. After a few minutes he looked up and shook his head. Mr Malfoy, you have another class to attend. Draco walked forward to stand right in front of the desk. You were ignoring me, he said quietly. Snapes frown didnt change. Regardless of what you might think, Mr Malfoy, the world does not revolve around you. The blond continued to stand, not answering. Get out of my class, Draco, Snape sneered. Draco walked over and picked up his things. When he reached the door, he turned back. I expect my father to disown me, he said, but I thought you might be different. Then he left, making his way to his next class. He did not cry. He would not.

CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX

Ambushed
After classes, Harry waited for Draco in the broom closet on the Charms corridor, where he knew Draco would pass if he were going to dinner or anywhere else really. He felt sort of stupid, but it didn't matter. He had run from the Transfiguration classroom to reach the closet in time and was a bit sweaty, but that didn't matter either. He had the door open just a crack, waiting for a flash of that blond hair. It had been a long day. A very long day. Draco's control was starting to slip badly. And he wanted to be with Harry. Then he stopped in the middle of the corridor. Was he supposed to meet Harry now or after dinner? He really couldn't see himself going into the Gryffindor common room without the other boy. He closed his eyes for a moment and then started forward again, not exactly sure of his next move. There it was. Harry saw Draco's hair and leapt from the closet, grabbing his arm and pulling him inside with him. He hoped no one saw, and if they did, he hoped they would ignore it. Draco had nearly pulled his wand and hexed Harry before he realised who it was. "Fuck, Harry," he gasped. Harry ignored him and pulled Draco in for a long kiss. He broke away after a minute. "Merlin, I've been wanting to do that all day." Draco surrendered himself to Harry's mouth and arms. It felt so good to relax into them and not hold himself so tight. "Oh, Gods." He sighed. "It has been too long." Harry chuckled because it had only been since that morning. "I wanted to jump you in Defence after you said that to me. Right in front of Snape," Harry said, kissing along Draco's neck "Mmm," Draco hummed, letting his head fall back and arching his neck for Harry. "Fucking hell. I want you so bad," Harry whined as he continued to kiss and lick Draco's skin. Draco moaned, letting his arms fall open, giving himself over to

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the Gryffindor. "I am yours," he whispered. "Do you think we can manage a quickie?" Harry asked huskily, already fingering along Draco's robe. "At ... your ... service," Draco gasped, reaching to cup Harry's crotch in one hand and running his hand down his chest, scratching through the fabric of the other boy's shirt. "Mmm, fuck," Harry let out, reaching for the forming bulge in Draco's trousers. He used his other hand to start undoing them. "Oh, yes," Draco hissed when Harry's hand touched his cock through the fabric. Harry finally got the fasteners undone and plunged his hand inside, gripping Draco's cock and giving it a few pumps. Draco moaned loudly and ran the hand down Harry's chest to start unfastening the dark-haired boy's trousers. His fingers were quick and graceful, but he was trembling a bit as he did it. Harry was panting now. It was so hot in the little enclosed space, and he was sweating even more than before. He could feel Draco trying to get his trousers undone and his heart sped up. He stroked Draco quicker. Draco finally got Harry's trousers undone and then yanked them down to his knees, shorts and all. He reached one hand to Harry's cock and the other to squeeze his arse. "Ah!" Harry cried shortly, thrusting into Draco's hand. He rested his forehead on Draco's shoulder and tried to speed his hand up even more, but it was difficult now with Draco's hands on him. "Do ... we ... have ... lube?" Draco gasped between strokes as tried to synchronise his hand with Harry's. Harry, who had been hoping this might happen, nodded his head yes. "Check ... my ... pocket," he panted. Draco reached his hand from Harry's arse down into his pocket and found the lube. He had to still his hand for a moment to concentrate, but he had it. Harry was gasping for breath now, he was so hot. "What do you need it for?" he almost cried. "Stop," Draco gasped, letting go of Harry's cock at the same time. Harry whined, but complied. He knew that when Draco did this, it usually meant something better was about to happen. Draco coated both palms in lube and then stepped in even closer

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to Harry, wrapping long fingers around both their cocks together. "Oh, fuck!" Harry cried, throwing his head back. He gripped Draco's robes and backed up against the wall, pulling Draco with him. Draco gasped in agreement, trying not to stumble when he was pulled with Harry. Once they were settled with Harry against the wall, Draco interlaced his fingers and began to stroke their cocks together, the double friction of Harry's cock against his and the pressure of his hands making him moan. "Fuck, Draco!" Harry yelped, thrusting forward. Draco made everything feel so damn good. How did he make everything feel so damn good? Harry didn't know and he certainly wasn't trying to figure it out right then. "Yes, Harry," Draco gasped, starting to pick up the pace a bit. He didn't think he would last long; it felt too good. Harry was getting close too. "Merlin, I'm gonna fuck you when we get back to our room," he said, still thrusting into Draco's groin and hands. "Oh, Merlin," Draco gasped, the promise sending him right over the edge. He was pumping and coming, feeling his slick seed coating his hands. Harry didn't last very long after that, maybe only a few seconds and he was coming too. He clutched Draco to him even harder, breathing heavily, mouth open and eyes tightly shut. Draco's head spun and his knees nearly buckled under him. He was still moaning, his head thrown back as Harry's come coated his hands and cock. He couldn't believe how good it felt. Harry slowly relaxed his grip, eyes still shut. He was so hot. He shook his head to get his damp hair out of his face and finally opened his eyes. "Fuck," he panted, smiling goofily. Draco gently released their cocks, holding his sticky fingers out to his sides so as not to make a bigger mess. "Eloquent as ever, Harry." He smirked. Harry laughed breathily. "Sorry. I meant that it was absolutely bloody fantastically good," he said with a smirk of his own. Draco grinned and nodded. "Can you reach your wand?" "Mmhm," Harry said, and he reached his hand into his robe pocket and pulled his wand out. He took a look at Draco's hands and

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grinned. "Want me to do it?" "I suppose I am at your mercy this time, Draco said with a smirk, holding out his hands. Harry chuckled and muttered the charm. It worked, although probably not as good as Draco's would have. He shrugged and put his wand back in his pocket. Draco found his own wand and did a Cleaning Charm on their bodies as well before starting to refasten his trousers. He could barely see Harry in the gloom of the closet but was glad to be with him. Harry pulled his slacks back up and chuckled as he did at the fact that Draco had pulled them down to his knees. When he was done, he pulled Draco to him again and hugged him, wanting to feel his body before they had to go back to not touching like this for a while. Draco rested his cheek against Harry's hair and sighed. He really would rather stay in this musty closet with Harry than leave. He held him tightly, feeling relaxed for the first time since early that morning. "I don't want to go," Harry said softly, pulling back to kiss Draco. "Neither do I." Draco sighed. "And I have prefect duties as well. I expect there are going to be some difficult questions put to me." "Prefect duties?" Harry whined. "I am supposed to keep my House in order so to speak." Draco sighed again. "Make sure they follow the rules, supervise the younger students, and mete out punishments to those who break the rules." "How long will that take?" Harry asked. "I haven't even been back to my House in days, and it's been longer than that since I was paying attention," Draco said quietly. "And then there is the matter of whether or not to have me removed from the position." Harry sighed and hugged Draco again. "I guess I'll just wait for you up in the common room after dinner," he said sadly. "Probably a good idea," Draco agreed. "Will the portrait let me in?" Harry nodded against Draco's chest. "If you have the password, and I'm sure you heard me give it?" "Yes," Draco said, and then leant in for another kiss. Harry kissed him back, savouring it. It lasted for a long time. He finally, reluctantly, pulled away. "I love you," he said quietly. Draco snorted, but answered quietly, I love you, Harry."

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Harry smiled. He knew he was a sap, but he didn't care. "Ready?" he said with a huff, still holding Draco. "As possible," Draco said, and braced himself again to dine with his Housemates. Harry was sitting at one of the round tables in the Gryffindor common room, one with a clear view of the portrait hole. Hermione was chattering on about Draco and binding and very quietly about his 'arm band', but Harry was only half listening. He just wanted Draco to get there. It was depressing sitting in the common room when hardly anyone would talk to him. Draco made his way from the dungeons and up the stairs towards the tower. He gritted his teeth, forcing his body to move. He was so bloody tired and the stairs seem to go on forever. Finally, he stood before the portrait of the Fat Lady. He said the password, but she frowned at him. "You don't belong here," she said. Draco rolled his eyes. "I know." He waited. Finally, she huffed and swung aside. Draco took a deep breath and stepped inside, face impassive and eyes scanning the room immediately. It was nearly curfew and the room was pretty full. He spotted Harry and made his way over to him, ignoring the looks and muttered comments. Harry sighed with relief at the sight of Draco and got to his feet to greet him. He wanted to wrap his arms around him, but everyone was staring. Draco literally felt like his arms ached to reach for Harry. He looked into his eyes and the tight bands of pain around his chest seemed to lessen a bit. He was aware that all eyes in the room were on them. This was Harry's territory, so he stood waiting for the other boy to do something. "Well, erm, Hermione, we're gonna go to bed," Harry said, not taking his eyes from Draco. He tilted his head toward the stairs. "Okay, well, good night then," Hermione said, sounding a little put out. Draco nodded, and turned to the stairs. He looked up them for a moment, thinking of how long the staircase seemed to have grown since morning. He took a deep breath, grabbed the rail, and began

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the climb. He could hear snickers and comments from the room. He ignored them and concentrated on one step at a time. Harry climbed up behind Draco and when they were high enough on the staircase to be out of sight, he placed his hands on Draco's hips and held him the rest of the way up. Draco smiled at Harry's touch and was immensely grateful when they finally reached the room. He unlocked the door, walked through it, and literally allowed himself to fall back onto the bed with a large sigh. Harry smiled at Draco and closed the door. He sat down on the bed gently. "Hard day?" he asked, already knowing the answer. "Was it only a day?" Draco sighed. "I thought it was a week since we were last in this room." Harry laughed softly and scooted up close to Draco and lay down on his side next to him. "It feels like that to me, too," he said, playing with Draco's sleeve. "How was your prefect stuff?" "It was ... challenging. There are some students refusing to acknowledge my authority anymore. He sighed and reached one hand to play with Harry's hair. The other hand he slid around Harry's waist, pulling him snug against his side. Harry sighed and smiled, loving being close to Draco. "So how did you handle that?" he asked, laying a hand on Draco's stomach. "I intimidated. When that didn't work, I hexed one as an example. Crabbe and Goyle may be a lost cause though," he said, sighing again. Harry raised his eyebrows. "Wow, no more Crabbe and Goyle?" he asked, surprised. "Though I can't say I liked them." "Oh, they aren't exactly going to go away. But they are no longer my allies," Draco said. "This does mean their Master will soon know about us." "Their master?" Harry shook his head. "I assume youre talking about Voldemort. Don't they realise that he doesn't give a damn about any of them? That'd he'd kill them all if it served him?" Harry scowled. "Yes, they do," Draco said quietly. "Those who serve Him do not expect His ... regard. They crave power or revenge or ... they simply fear Him." "Well, that's stupid," Harry said bitterly. "I don't understand that

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way of thinking. And to think, I almost got put in Slytherin." Draco's eyes widened. "What?" Harry looked up at him. "Yeah, the Sorting Hat almost put me there. I asked not to be, so then it put me in Gryffindor. Could you imagine me in Slytherin?" A big grin spread across Draco's face and his eyebrows shot up. "I can imagine you very well in a particular Slytherin." Harry smirked. "So can I," he said suggestively. He moved so that he was over top of Draco on his hands and knees. "You know, I really don't break promises." He waggled his eyebrows. Draco gasped, remembering the promise in the closet. His heart sped up. "Good," he said breathlessly. Harry bent forward and kissed Draco slowly, already working on pulling his own robes off. "I always want you, all the fucking time, every minute of every hour of every day. Merlin, you're so hot," he said quietly as he mouthed along Draco's jaw and the skin of his neck. Draco's hand in Harry's hair tightened, pulling on the thick strands in appreciation of the other boy's words. "I am yours." He sighed, arching into Harry. Harry smirked. "So you keep telling me." He sat up for a moment and pulled his robes off. "I'm going to fuck you hard, you know," he said staring down at Draco with bright eyes. He started working on the buttons on his shirt. "Merlin, yes," Draco answered, grey eyes focused on Harry's green. He lay under him like an offering. Relaxing control and letting Harry take over was what he really needed right then. Harry smirked again and pulled his shirt and tie off. He didn't want to, but he rolled off Draco to remove his shoes and trousers. He crawled down the bed and pulled Draco's shoes off too, still looking him straight in the eyes. Then he yanked his trousers off and reached up to grab his underwear as well. When Draco was naked from the waist down, Harry climbed back on top of him and sat so that their cocks were touching. He let out a long, low moan. Draco felt entranced by those green eyes and held his gaze as Harry stripped his lower body. He lay passive, enjoying the show. When their cocks touched, his moan echoed Harry's and he trembled.

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Harry licked his lips and rocked his hips a bit. He smiled widely, mouth open and head thrown back a bit. Draco lay beneath him robes, shirt and tie still on. His eyes devoured the wanton and beautiful sight of Harry atop him. He lay gasping, holding his hands down at his sides only by fisting them in his robes. Harry kept it up for a few more seconds, but then held his hand out and Summoned the lube. Not speaking a word, he rolled off Draco again and crawled between his legs, pushing them open wider. Draco lifted his legs and spread them at Harry's push, wanting him inside him, but not wanting to speak or rush things. He felt open, more than just physically, but as if he were a vessel to hold Harry's magic as well. Harry let out a few shaky breaths and opened the jar. He dipped his fingers inside and then went straight for Draco's opening, groaning as he slid two fingers inside. Draco gasped, moaning in delight. He lifted his hips, urging him on. Harry watched his fingers move in and out of Draco, making wet little noises as they did that made his mouth water. He bit his lip and hooked his fingers, pushing at Draco's prostate. Draco groaned, arching off the bed with feet and shoulders pressed against it and hips raised. "Please," he begged, "please." Harry bent and kissed Draco's stomach. "Soon," he whispered so quietly that Draco probably didn't hear him. He pushed another finger in, stretching Draco quickly. Draco couldn't think, didn't want to think. He just wanted Harry inside him now. "Now, please," he continued to beg, tossing his head in frustration. Harry flexed his fingers a few more times and kissed his way up Draco's stomach before finally taking them out. He slicked his cock, watching Draco toss his head and thinking that he would probably never see anything so beautiful. He moved in close and pushed just the head of his cock against Draco's entrance, not breaching him yet. He stared down at him for a moment and then slid very slowly inside, letting out a guttural grunt as he did. "Oh, yes, yours," Draco gasped, trembling with need as Harry pushed inside him. He felt so right and Draco gasped as the familiar

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heat of the other boy's magic also radiated out from the point where they were joined. Harry's head dropped and his eyes fell closed. He pulled back out just as slowly as he had went in, but then he slammed forward, keeping his promise that he was going to fuck Draco hard. He cried out shortly and arched his neck. "Yes, fill me," Draco encouraged, gasping. He brought his hands up to grasp his own thighs, spreading himself as wide as he could. Harry pulled out and slammed his hips forward again, and again, and again. Fuck it felt so good, but he didn't say anything; he only kept thrusting, moving faster and not pulling out so far now, but the pace made it worthwhile. And, oh Merlin, how Draco was spread for him. Fuck, he looked so good. Each time Harry slammed forward, Draco felt like he could feel him throughout his body. It was the most amazing feeling, like there was no part of him that Harry did not reach. Draco's eyes were shut, his entire focus tuned to the sensations of Harry within him. Harry didn't know how long he pumped his hips. Time seemed to stop and all that mattered was what was happening between them. Sweat soaked his back and chest as he tried to move faster. He thought he might've achieved it, but it was probably only in his head; he was losing the ability to think anything at all. Draco felt like he could lay there being filled by Harry for the rest of ... his life. That was way too short. Eternity would be best. Nothing else mattered to him. Harry could feel himself getting close. He knew that if he didn't slow down, he was going to come and he didn't want to before Draco. He reached a hand forward and grasped Draco's cock, slowing his thrusting, but speeding his hand up. Draco didn't want Harry to slow down. He wanted to feel that glorious burst of energy when Harry came. "Don't stop," he gasped, thrusting against both Harry's cock and hand. Harry gasped and closed his eyes again. He sped his hips up and tried to hold back, but there was no way he could any longer. He thrust harder than ever and then he was coming, chest heaving and breath escaping him in short little gasps. Harry's magic blossomed in Draco like a wave of fire through his nerves, and he was coming, thrusting and moaning under Harry. His

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need and joy in it was the only thought he had. Harry somehow managed to not fall on top of Draco. He watched him reach completion and wanted to fuck him all over again it was so hot. He moaned and twitched as Draco's orgasm made his arse convulse around Harry's spent cock. Draco lay spent and happy, his breathing still ragged but his nerves calm. He floated in a state of bliss, the feel of Harry the only awareness he had. Harry pulled out slowly and crawled up Draco's body to lie, still panting, next to him, his head on his shirt-clad chest. Draco's awareness seemed to come back slowly, like a feather floating back to earth. He brought his arm around Harry, holding him against his chest. He snorted, when he realised that he was still wearing most of his school clothes. Harry smiled happily. "Sorry. I got eager again," he said, plucking at Draco's shirt. "Sorry?" Draco arched an eyebrow. "I sincerely doubt that." He felt boneless and so exhausted, he wasn't sure he could move. Harry chuckled and yawned. "Tired?" he asked, still so happy and sated he thought he might burst from it. "Mmhmm," Draco hummed and he yawned too, his eyes closed and his head tilted toward Harry's. "Let's go to sleep," Harry murmured. He didn't even bother pulling the covers over them. He just threw a leg over Draco and closed his eyes, breathing in Draco's smell that he loved so much. Draco chuckled. "I am not sleeping in my tie and robes," he said, and then tried to move. His body protested greatly. But he did manage to pull his tie off and then began using one hand to unbutton his shirt. "Mmm," Harry let out sleepily, still not opening his eyes. He could feel Draco trying to take his clothes off, and he knew he would have to move for him soon, but he didn't want to right at that moment. "You're no help," Draco complained, struggling with his buttons and the weight of the other boy on one of his arms. Harry groaned and opened his eyes. He rolled off Draco and put his hands behind his head, waiting for Draco to be done so that he could move in close to him again.

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Draco dragged himself up and stripped off his shirt and robe. He grimaced at the mess on his clothes and did yet another Cleaning Spell. He was becoming quite the expert at them. "Under the covers, you," he said, slapping playfully at Harry's thigh. Harry jumped and groaned again, but he did as Draco said, managing to pull roughly at the blanket beneath him and get under it. He looked at Draco pointedly and then closed his eyes again. Draco smiled and happily climbed in with him, drawing the other boy into his arms and taking a happy breath of him.

CHAPTER TWENTY-SEVEN

Not Playing
May 10 Harry emerged from the staircase, looking around for Hermione. He wanted to start working on how to get the serpent off Draco's arm immediately. He saw her sitting at a table and crossed the room to her, dragging Draco along with him. Draco allowed himself to be led over to Hermione. He wasn't resisting, but he was secretly amused by the display Harry was putting on. He noticed that some of the Gryffindors were amused too. Others were not. Harry ignored everyone in the room. He sat down at Hermione's table and pulled the chair out next to him for Draco to sit in. She looked up at them, eyebrows raised. "Well, good morning," she said. "Yeah, morning," Harry said impatiently. "Do you know anything about Draco's arm band? Have you figured anything else out?" Hermione's eyebrows rose further. "Well, I haven't really been able to read up on too much, because all the books I read that even mentioned anything that might even be related to it led me straight to the Restricted Section. I'll have to get a note from a teacher." Harry sighed. "I'll have to do that then. Draco, any thoughts about who might give us permission?" He was talking quickly. That morning he had been watching Draco sleep and staring at the serpent and had really realised how close it was to Draco's birthday. He had panicked a little when actually thinking about it. Draco took the seat next to Harry and sat thinking about it for a moment. "Anyone you ask for permission will likely need to know why." Harry sighed. "Well, what do we tell them? We certainly can't say that you're going to die if you don't kill someone. The only person who knows is Snape. Would he give us permission?" Draco frowned, trying to reason through the changes in Snape's

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behaviour and the implications of the Unbreakable Vow. "I think he has some interest in keeping me alive," Draco said guardedly. "I can attempt to speak to him about it." "Well, you should today, as soon as possible," Harry said quickly. "Hermione and I can go to the library and read up on stuff that may help us, and we'll be there when you get back. If Snape doesn't let you, then I'll use my bloody Invisibility Cloak to use the Restricted Section, although it would really, really help if we could look through books in the daytime too, so try as hard as you can to get a note." Hermione stared at him for a second. "Breathe, Harry, breathe," she said slowly. Draco sat back with his arms crossed on his chest and listened to the two Gryffindors. "The odds of this place having anything on this kind of Dark Magic aren't very probable," he said. Harry frowned heavily. "Well, then what do we do?" he asked. "Where could we possibly look other than the library?" Draco cocked his head, looking at Hermione for a moment. "Well, I already looked through much of the library here. I could have missed something, but ." He shrugged. "Do any of you have access to a pure-blood family library? The kind likely to have these kinds of books?" Hermione stared at Draco disbelievingly for a moment. "You're asking me if I have access to a pure-blood library? Of course I don't. I'm Muggle-born." Harry covered his face with his hands. "You know I don't have anything like that," he said through his fingers. "The only purebloods I talk to really besides you are Ron and Neville, and not even Ron anymore. The Weasleys probably wouldn't have anything on this anyway and neither would Neville's grandmother." Draco huffed. "So how did you end up owning the Black family house-elf? Didn't you say you inherited the estate?" Harry's hand flew off his face and his eyes widened. "Draco, you're a genius. I didn't think about that at all." Hermione was looking at Draco appreciatively. She looked a bit put out for not having thought of it herself. "I bet there are tons of books there," Harry continued babbling. He wanted to hug Draco.

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Draco rolled his eyes. "You always say that like you are surprised, Potter." He sat back, pretending to be cross but he was secretly pleased. Harry grinned. "I'll get Kreacher to go there as soon as possible. Hopefully we can start working on it really soon, probably after breakfast. Hermione, do you think you're " "Morning, Harry," Ginny said from above, interrupting Harry. "Oh, morning, Ginny. I don't mean to be rude, but I'm doing something really, really important right now. Did you want something?" "Erm, yeah. I just wanted to know if you're having the team go to the locker room early .... I didn't know," Ginny said, raising an eyebrow. "Locker room ...?" Harry said confusedly, but then he slapped his hand to his forehead. "Oh, Merlin, the Quidditch game is today," he groaned. Draco had a hard time controlling the smirk and keeping it from becoming a grin. The idea that Harry Potter was so concerned about him that he actually forgot about Quidditch, well, that was bloody fantastic. "Yeah ..." Ginny said slowly. "Don't tell me you've forgotten the Quidditch game?" "Well, I have had a bit on my mind," Harry said, putting his face in his hands again. "I can't play, I can't." "What? What do you mean you can't play? This is the last game of the season! We can't play without you!" Ginny cried. "You're going to have to," Harry groaned. "I have too much to do. I'd explain it to you, but I don't want people overhearing." Ginny put her hands on her hips. "It better be bloody well important if you're going to skip out on the game!" she said angrily. "It is important. Life or death important." Ginny stared at him for a long moment. "Well, what are we supposed to do then?" she asked, still not sounding very happy. Harry sighed. "You play Seeker, get Dean to play Chaser or something. I really wish I could play, but I just can't." Draco listened to the conversation and wondered at the strange twists of fate. Harry Potter wanting to spend the day reading books instead of playing Quidditch. Their previous conversation about

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Polyjuice came to mind. It was no wonder people were confused by them. Ginny huffed. "You could've said something. Getting Dean to play at the last second is just wonderful, Harry." She scowled. "I know, and I'm really, truly sorry, but I can't play." Ginny frowned. "Oh, fine," she said with a huff. "McGonagall's not going to be happy." "Making people happy is the farthest thing from my mind right now," Harry said seriously. Ginny huffed one more time. "Well, I'll go and tell everyone else then." She turned and began walking over in Katie Bell's direction. "I really am sorry!" Harry called to her back before turning back to Draco and Hermione anxiously. Draco watched her go and frowned. There was definitely something there with her. What was it about Harry and the Weasleys? He looked about and it appeared her brother was not in the room. "Okay, so anyway, Hermione, do you think you can look through books with Draco and me today? I know we'd get so much more done if you were helping." "Do you even have to ask?" Hermione said, smiling gently. She reached a hand out and patted his arm. Harry was just about to say something else when there was quite an uproar from across the room. He looked up and saw Demelza, Katie, Coote and Peakes stomping over to him. "You're not playing, Harry?" "Why not?" "What's the deal?" "Has this got to do with Malfoy?" Harry looked up at them all, overwhelmed. Draco's face was the impassive mask again, and he sat up. He watched Harry's teammates and waited for word to spread. He knew it was probably only a matter of time, if that, before another confrontation with the Weasel. Harry let them shout things at him, soon the whole room was staring and other people had begun to shout at him once they knew what was going on. His face turned red with anger, and he jumped to his feet. "Shut the bloody hell up!" he yelled very loudly. A few people gasped, and

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some kept chattering angrily, but most did shut up. Perhaps Harry had more influence over his house than he'd thought. "You all want to call me a bloody queer, and a poofter and a ponce, but you want me to win you a Quidditch game? Well, fuck all of you! See if I do one more bloody thing for any of you! Even if I didn't have something important to do I wouldn't play! Not for a thousand Quidditch cups! I'm sorry to my team, I know that most of you are on my side, but I'm not bloody playing, so leave me the hell alone!" Draco shook his head, standing up behind Harry and laying a hand in the small of his back, a gesture of support and comfort. He worried about Harry alienating his housemates unnecessarily. Harry swallowed, breathing heavily. No one said anything; they just all sat staring at him and a few looked guilty. Harry looked around at them all and then spotted Ron in a corner leaning against the wall. He was staring at Harry, but he wasn't scowling or red or shouting, just staring. He pushed off from the wall and frowned slightly and left the common room through the portrait hole. Harry dropped down into his seat and took his glasses off, rubbing his temples. Draco stood behind Harry, even after the other boy sat. His face was impassive, but he regarded the other students. Then he placed both hands on Harry's shoulders and gave a gentle squeeze. Harry sighed and kept his eyes closed. "I can't take this," he said quietly. His head was so full of things he was surprised it hadn't split open. There was always Voldemort in the back of his mind, but now there were Horcruxes. There was Draco now and keeping him alive and the binding that they still hadn't figured out completely. There was this whole fight with Ron and everyone being horrible to him. It was all too much. "Oh, Harry," Hermione said softly across from him. Draco stepped closer, pressing his front to the back of Harry's chair. "I am sure," he spoke into the silence, "that all of you are aware that Harry would rather play Quidditch than study." He paused for a moment for the few chuckles in the room. "Yet, circumstances are such that he needs the time at this point. I am sure he trusts you to carry on without him." There was muttering all around the room. Some students were still obviously confused over the whole Malfoy thing.

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"Yes," Harry said loudly from his chair, sighing. "I'm sorry for shouting I just I just have a lot on my mind right now and, Merlin, I wish I could play, but I can't. Believe me, I really wish I could play. I wish I could do a lot of things, but it's out of the question right now. So I would really appreciate it if you could just play without me. I hope we win, and I'm sure the team'll be fine. Ginny's an excellent Seeker. You all know that." Harry stared tiredly up at all of them, grateful for Draco's hands on his shoulders. They probably all thought he was mad. Maybe he was. There was more muttering, but everyone slowly went back to what they were doing. The team all said that they were sorry and that they understood, even though some of them were bitter. Finally, Harry, Hermione, and Draco were left alone again. Draco sat down but kept his hands on Harry's shoulders, rubbing them a bit. He nodded an acknowledgement of her help to Hermione. Harry sighed and shook his head. "Thank you, Draco," he said quietly. "I swear I'm going mad." "I think they would agree with you," Draco said, smirking. "So, can I look at this library? I am not sure a house-elf will know what to look for." Harry winced. "Erm, no actually," he said, looking at Draco. "I can't even tell you where it is." Draco's hands stilled and he slid them off Harry's shoulders and sat forward to he could see the other boy's face. "Why?" "It's protected by a Fidelius Charm, and I'm not the Secret Keeper," Harry said glumly, wishing that Draco could go and look at the library. Draco nodded. "Can you?" he asked Hermione. Hermione nodded. "Yes, but I think it would be really helpful if you gave me some tips on what to look for. I could find it myself eventually, but it would be much faster with you helping." "Will the house allow ..." Draco paused, looking for a polite way to ask. "Will it allow someone not of the Black lineage access?" Hermione nodded again. "Yes, I spent the entire summer there last year. As long as you know it's there, you can get in." "Look for books that give instructions or theory on blood magic, bindings, control forms, and animate serpents," Draco said. "It might

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be pretty obscure, and it might not even be there." Hermione nodded, pulling out parchment and quill to jot down what Draco said. When she finished she looked to Harry. "How am I going to get there?" she asked. Harry frowned. "Well, you know how to ... Apparate." Hermione looked a bit frightened by that. "Yes ..." she said. Harry winced. "The only way I can think is if you Apparate there from Hogsmeade or something," he said. "I don't want you to have to do it, but I don't know how we'll find anything otherwise." "Add serpents and their venom to that list," Draco said, frowning. Hermione sighed and wrote that down too. "I'll do anything to help," she said, looking up again. "Should I go today?" Yes, go today," Harry said quickly. "As soon as possible. We don't have much time. Draco, your birthday's on the fifth, isn't it?" Draco sighed, but nodded. "Is this risky for you?" he asked Hermione. "Of course it is," she answered. "I'll get into a heap of trouble if I get caught sneaking into Hogsmeade and then leaving Scotland completely, but I'm willing to do it. What's getting in trouble to saving a life?" "I am not comfortable with you taking risks on my behalf," Draco said, frowning. Hermione sighed. "It's fine," she said. "I wouldn't do it if I didn't think you truly cared about Harry and that you really don't want to do what Voldemort has told you to do. Besides, I'm sure you could be a very strong ally in future." Harry smiled at her. He felt bad for asking her to do this too, but he was willing to do anything. "Granger, I need to be clear with you about this. I don't expect this to actually work. It is not about your abilities, but about the skills and obscurity of the spell used." He had leant forward dropping his voice. "I am going along with this for Harry's benefit." Hermione's eyes widened and her eyebrows pulled together. She was silent for a moment before, "I'll go," she said firmly. Harry didn't catch the last bit of what Draco had said, and he sat staring confusedly at him and Hermione. "He hasn't been expecting this to work from the beginning," he said dismissively, "but he hasn't

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ever seen you research anything, Hermione." Hermione's eyes seem to grow shinier at that for some reason.

CHAPTER TWENTY-EIGHT

What It Takes
Harry was looking around and keeping an eye out for people as Hermione prepared to climb into the humpbacked witch to sneak into Honeydukes. She was wearing his Invisibility Cloak, so he couldn't see her, but he could still hear her of course. "Hermione, you have no idea how much this means to me," he said quietly, still looking around. Hermione moved toward Harry and gave him an invisible hug. "You know I don't mind," she said firmly. He smiled down at the air in front of him. "You're brilliant," he said fondly. She gave Harry one last squeeze before actually moving her hand over and giving Draco a very quick squeeze on the arm as well. Draco nodded. "Good luck, Granger." "Thanks," she said, finally climbing up and then she was gone. "Hermione?" Harry asked, just to make sure. There was no answer, and he knew she had left. He sighed with relief and turned to Draco. Draco studied the empty passage. "How many secret passages do you know around here?" "All of them," Harry said simply. Draco regarded him for a moment, raising one eyebrow. "How?" "My map," Harry said, shrugging. There were so many things that Draco didn't know about him and probably so many things that he didn't know about Draco. "I have a map of Hogwarts that shows where everyone is in the castle, and it shows all the secret passages. I know all of them, unless there are some that aren't on there." Draco stared at him, spending a minute thinking about what Harry had said, and he finally realised he wasn't kidding. "Bloody hell," he cursed, shaking his head. "No wonder." Harry chuckled, but then thought that they were wasting time just standing there. "Let's go to the library," he said.

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"Do you have the map on you?" Draco asked, ignoring the library suggestion. Harry frowned. "No, but that isn't important right now. Let's go to the library." Draco frowned, leaning against the wall. "Why the library? Harry looked at Draco as if to say, 'Why do you think?' "I would think it'd be pretty obvious," he said, eyebrow raised. "There is nothing in the library that will help us," Draco drawled. "Let's go back to our room." Harry's eyes narrowed. "You don't know that," he said. "You said yourself you might have missed something." "I was being polite," Draco sneered. "This is a waste of time. I would rather enjoy what time I have left than spend it in the library." Harry's eyes narrowed further. "We're going to the library," he said slowly and angrily. "You might have missed something." "Is that an order?" Draco hissed. "Draco, stop being an idiot!" Harry said furiously. "You won't let me do anything to help you. You won't tell me what the hell's going on with most of this, you won't tell me who you're bloody supposed to kill, and now you won't let me go to the library to see if I can find something that'll help you? Why are you being this way?" Draco scowled, turned and walked away. Harry nearly roared with fury. "Stop being an arsehole!" he yelled, walking after him. Draco stopped in his tracks, but didn't turn and didn't say a word. Harry wondered if that had been a command. He walked the rest of the way forward and stood in front of Draco so that he had to face him. "Why are you being this way?" he spat again. Draco closed his eyes, refusing to look at Harry, his hands clenched at his sides. He was trembling. Harry growled with frustration. "Look at me, talk to me!" he shouted angrily, glaring. Draco's eyes snapped open but narrowed angrily. "What should I say?" "Why the hell don't you want to go to the library? Why don't you want me to help you?" "Release me, Harry," Draco hissed, glaring at him. "No!" Harry yelled, beyond himself at this point.

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"You are just going to make it worse," Draco hissed. "That's why!" "How am I going to make it worse? What's so wrong with wanting to do whatever I can to keep you alive?" Harry asked. "Harry, you are shouting at me in the middle of the hall," Draco said, voice low and dangerous-sounding. "Do you really want to humiliate me on top of everything else?" Harry closed his eyes and took several deep breaths through his nose. "Fine," he said finally, more calmly, though his voice was still shaking with anger. "We'll go up to the bloody room then, but don't think for one second that I'm letting this go. You can stop doing what I said to do." Draco's head fell back and his eyes closed. He took several large breaths, trying to calm himself. No one ever got to him the way Potter ... Harry did. Harry turned on the spot and began walking quickly towards Gryffindor Tower. He was so angry he wanted to hit something. When he thought he had enough control to maintain his face, Draco followed him. He did not run, but he kept Harry in sight as they made their way to the tower. Harry made it up to their room a minute before Draco, he had gone so quickly, and he kicked hard at their bed. He turned and faced the door, waiting for Draco to come up. The other students were at the Quidditch match, so the Gryffindor common room was empty. Draco was relieved. He made his way up the stairs and finally stood in the doorway of their room, leaning on the frame with his arms crossed while staring past Harry at nothing in particular. Harry glared at Draco for a moment, waiting for him to say something. "Well?" he asked angrily. Draco pushed off from the frame and shut the door, leaning against it instead. "I am ... gratified that you want me to live," he said, "but I can't want it with you." Harry threw his hands out in frustration. "What the hell?" he yelled. "You want to die? Are you bloody mental?" Draco shook his head, staring at the floor and sighing. "No, I don't want to die. I just don't want to want what I can't have." "But you can have it!" Harry said desperately. "You can if you'd

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just let me help you. You've already given up and you still have an entire month. Why won't you just tell me who you're supposed to kill!? I said it before, but do you know what kind of difference that could make? What if they could help or something? Why won't you tell Dumbledore or anyone?" "Not won't. Can't." Draco sighed. He walked across the room and stood looking out the window at the Hogwarts grounds. He could imagine he heard the cheers of the Quidditch pitch. "The spell doesn't allow me to say who it is." Harry closed his eyes and sighed heavily. "Why didn't you tell me that before?" he asked. "I did," Draco said quietly. "And it isn't a month. It is twenty-six days." Harry fell onto the bed and dropped his face into his hands. "I don't know what to do," he said quietly after a moment. Draco turned and looked at Harry, shaking his head. He walked forward and dropped gracefully to his knees in front of him and laid his forehead against Harry's hands. Harry didn't know how long they stayed like that. "I've fallen in love with you, Draco," he said in a voice that implied he still couldn't accept what Draco was trying to tell him. "I'm in love with you." Draco didn't know how such simple words could fill him with so much joy and so much pain at the same time. The conflicting feelings were like a whirlwind that threatened to tear him into pieces. He didn't even realise he was crying again until the tears dripped from his face and onto his hands in his lap. "I'm in love with you," Harry said again, sliding down from the bed to be on the floor with Draco. He threw his arms around his shoulders and felt silent tears running down his cheeks as well. "You can't do this to me," he whispered. "I am too selfish to apologise," Draco said, his arms encircling Harry's waist. "I'm glad you love me. I don't want to hurt you. But I don't want to give you up either. I'm in love with you, Harry. I want to spend what time I have enjoying that. Is that so difficult to understand?" Harry didn't answer, he couldn't. It hurt too much, everything hurt too much. He held Draco to him and simply cried silently. He hadn't cried so much in his entire life.

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"Make love to me," Draco whispered, his own tears still wet on his face. "I promise to work with Granger when she brings the books back. In the meantime, just let me forget for a while and enjoy being alive." Harry held Draco for a few more minutes before kissing him, still crying. His heart hurt, actually hurt. He would give this to Draco if that was what he wanted. Draco licked the salt from Harry's lips, tasting again their mingled tears. He slid one of his knees between Harry's so that they could be closer. Harry gripped Draco's robes in his fists. He felt desperate, desperate for something he knew wouldn't be given to him, and it felt like he was going mad, like he already was mad. He felt like Draco was leaving him, like this might be his last time with him, and he sobbed harder, kissing Draco. Draco surrendered to the pressure of Harry's kiss, unsure what to do to help calm the other boy. "Don't leave me," Harry whispered against Draco's lips, gripping his robes even harder. "Please, don't leave me." "Shh, Harry," Draco soothed, starting to cry again too. He wanted to promise Harry to be there beside him, to spend the summer making love, to celebrate their coming of age. Hell, even to fight the Dark Lord together. He wanted to promise him anything he wanted. He wanted him to be happy. And he wanted to be happy too. But Draco Malfoy didn't make promises he couldn't keep. Harry felt like he couldn't breathe, he might've even stopped, but that wasn't likely as the tears still fell from his face. He could hear himself gasping, but he could feel nothing but Draco. He didn't know how it happened, but they had somehow ended up lying on the floor, Harry over top of Draco, still kissing him, along his neck now, and across every inch of his face. Draco lay under Harry, his face turned in wonder toward him, feeling tears and kisses raining upon his face. It was the saddest and most beautiful sight he could imagine. He rested his hands on Harry's hips, holding them tight as if to anchor them both. Harry buried his face in Draco's neck as he began trying to undo the clasps of his robes. He still couldn't breathe. He couldn't think about anything except how much he didn't want Draco to leave him,

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how much he wanted to be with him forever, how much he still couldn't accept that Draco thought everything was a lost cause. He got the robes open, shaking. He fumbled with the buttons on Draco's shirt, picking his head up to stare at them while he tried to pry them open. His hands were shaking so badly he could hardly do it. Draco brought his hands to cover Harry's, taking them in his own and kissing them before setting them down beside him. Then, his eyes on Harry's, he began to unbutton his own shirt. Harry allowed Draco to move his hands, and he bowed his head, taking gasping breaths from his crying. This wasn't fair. Why did everything Harry loved have to be taken from him? Why couldn't he just be normal? There were so many questions that could never be answered. He tried to take his own robes off, but could barely manage that as well, and he gave up, simply fumbling with his trousers now. Draco had finished his own shirt buttons but frowned at Harry. He reached again for the other boy's hands. "Stop," he said quietly. He spent a minute lying there looking up at Harry. At that moment, it occurred to Draco that he might even be able to kill for Harry. It was a frightening thought, but it was somehow reassuring to know that it wasn't just a matter of cowardice that kept him from completing his mission. "I will do it," he said simply. "Whatever it takes, I will do what you want, Harry." Harry didn't know what to say to that, because he didn't truly know what Draco meant. Nothing was making sense to him, but Draco's words made him collapse against him, sobbing harder than ever. He cried into his chest and neck, his fingers clenching in Draco's robes material that was still surrounding them. Draco wrapped his arms around Harry, stroking his hair and making soothing noises. "Hush, love," Draco said. Harry cried for a long time, he wasn't sure how long exactly, long enough so that he was still taking random gasping breaths even after he'd stopped crying. He was just lying there now, staring ahead at nothing, his eyes wide and disbelieving. Having made up his mind to try to live, Draco found himself feeling strangely quiet and distant from his own feelings. He held Harry, continuing to pet him and soothe him. Once Harry's breathing had finally returned to normal, he closed

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his eyes. He didn't know what to say now. He didn't know if he should say anything. "I love you," he mouthed silently, even though there was no way Draco could've heard him, as he couldn't even find his voice. "Do you still want to go to the library and see what we can find?" Draco asked when it seemed that Harry was calmer. Harry shrugged. He didn't know what he wanted anymore. What if it really was a lost cause and he wasted his time with Draco looking in books that couldn't do anything to help him? He couldn't bear the thought, and yet he still couldn't give up, even if some of that anger had died. "Come on, Harry," Draco encouraged. "Let's go see what we can find." Harry closed his eyes again and sighed, before giving a very small nod. He weakly pushed himself from Draco and the floor and got to his feet, staring at nothing in particular. Draco got up and began re-buttoning his shirt. He watched Harry, a small worried frown on his face. "Harry?" he said, trying to bring him back from wherever he had gone. Harry glanced at Draco. "Hmm?" he asked with another weak sigh. "We can stay here if you want," Draco offered. "Or we can go try to work on the problem." Harry sat on the bed and looked down at his legs. "I don't know," he said quietly. "What do you want to do?" "Bloody hell, Harry!" Draco snapped. "Make up your mind! First, you get mad at me for not trying. Now, look at you. I guess I am dead already then." Harry sighed. He didn't have the emotional strength to have a row again. "Let's go to the damn library then," he said, not really sounding angry, but perhaps just a tad. Draco finished re-dressing himself and stood with hands on hips, looking down at Harry. He didn't really know what to do with a Harry who didn't push back when pushed. It confused and scared him. He wished Granger would get back. Merlin, he thought, I have gone mental. Harry got heavily to his feet, walked out the door and headed down the stairs. He paused at the bottom to wait for Draco.

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CHAPTER TWENTY-NINE

Who They Believe In


They spent several fruitless hours in the library, pouring through many of the books Draco had already read earlier in the year in his unsuccessful research attempts. Harry was listless, and it made Draco irritable. He was trying to control his temper, but it was wearing thin. He snapped another book shut and sat pinching the bridge of his nose with his eyes closed. Harry sighed and pushed another book away from him. He hadn't said much of anything, and he couldn't help thinking that Draco was right, that there wouldn't be anything there to help them and the whole thing was stupid and hopeless. He pulled another book to him and began skimming it, not even really seeing the words anymore. He gazed up at Draco, his head resting on his hand. Draco looked annoyed, but he still didn't say anything to him; he just let his eyes slide back down to the book in front of him. Harry didn't take his slightly out of focus eyes from the book until he heard someone enter the library. No one else had come in the entire time they'd been in there. It was Hermione. She looked slightly flushed, like she had rushed there. "I went all the way up to the common room, but you weren't there, so I thought you'd be in here," she said. Harry stared at her for a second, but didn't say anything. She raised an eyebrow. "I grabbed as many books as I could find ..." she said, dropping her very big, very full bag on the table. Draco looked up when the girl came in. He thought he had never been so grateful to see Granger as he was then. He smiled and came over to look at the books, glancing at Harry to see how he was reacting. Harry stared at them, but didn't get up. Hermione frowned and began taking the books out. "What's wrong with him?" she whispered out of the corner of her mouth.

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Draco frowned. "First he yelled at me for giving up, and now he seems to have done exactly that," he complained. Draco began reading the spines of each book and, despite being annoyed with Harry, found himself caught up in the strange collection. "I think these should be really useful," Hermione said loudly to Draco. "Look at how old some of them are, and one you can't even get open without using a drop of blood; if that's not a book for Dark Magic, I don't know what is." Harry perked up a bit at that. "Which one?" he asked. Hermione handed said book over. Draco was already immersed in another volume but relaxed a bit when Harry seemed to wake up. "This one is real nasty," he said with a smirk. "Ways to force others to do your bidding, including a number of different types of binding spells." He began making different piles for different topics and placing them in order of most promising. "Is that good?" asked Harry, coming to stand next to Draco now. "Good for us, maybe," Draco said. "Might give us answers on both spells." He smiled at Harry, and held up another volume. "This one is a compendium of magical toxins." Harry sighed with relief. "These'll take ages to get through," he said, looking at all the books. "Not with three of us reading," Hermione piped up. "And think of all the answers we could find in here. We may even come across answers that may be useful for ... other things." Harry nodded, knowing that she was talking about Horcruxes. Draco nodded, not catching the subtext of their conversation. "Let's get them back to the tower," he said. "Has the game let out yet?" Hermione sighed. "Yes, so it'll be hard to get some quiet. Apparently we won. They're celebrating, although I must say it is a bit more subdued than usual." Draco raised eyebrows but didn't comment. Instead, he began gathering the books up and carefully putting them back in the bag. "Do you want to just go up to our room then?" asked Harry, helping with the books. "No one will bother us up there." Hermione shrugged and nodded. "You should celebrate with your House," Draco said. "You are

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still their team Captain." Harry rolled his eyes. "Oh please," he said. "They won't want me there anyway. Ready?" he asked, shouldering the bag for Hermione. Draco huffed. "Harry, look at me." Harry sighed and then turned to face Draco. "What?" Draco stood straight and looked at Harry challengingly. "Did I ask whether my House still wants me? No, it is my obligation to lead until I can't. And you are more than a team Captain. You need to be building your alliances for the future." Harry raised an eyebrow. "What exactly does celebrating a Quidditch game have to do with any of that? Besides, I'm going to have to go it alone soon anyway. No one's going to be able to help me," he said with a touch of bitterness, thinking of the prophecy. Draco glanced at Hermione, but continued. "You asked me why they follow the Dark Lord," he said. "But what you should be asking is what does it take to keep people from following him. They have to believe that there is someone willing to stand up to him and who has a real chance of winning. Otherwise, they will join him. You are whom they believe in. And they believe in you because of who you are, not just that bloody scar. So, no matter what you want to do or what you think they want, you go show them you are still part of them." Draco crossed his arms over his chest and waited. Harry shook his head at Draco. "Erm, Harry, he might have a point," Hermione said quietly. Harry looked at her now and snorted. "You know how they are," he said. "Stubborn, the lot of them." "Well, so are you obviously," Hermione said cheekily. Harry shook his head again. "You're not going to let this drop, are you?" he asked Draco. Draco looked at him, unmoving. "You refuse them all and you are letting down those who have supported you in spite of everything, like Longbottom and the Weasley girl." Harry bit his lip. He couldn't argue with that. "Fine, I'll sit in the common room and pretend like I'd rather be there than trying to figure out a way to keep you from dying," he said, rolling his eyes. "Where are you going?" Draco relaxed and cocked his head. "It's a House celebration. But I will go where you want me to at your side, or in the room

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studying." "Draco, I know you 'belong' to me, but you can still make up your mind. I know you don't want to let me choose everything for you, so do what you want. I honestly don't mind," Harry said simply. All of this 'I will do whatever you ask' was nice, but Harry felt uncomfortable having so much control over Draco. Draco stepped forward and put his hand along Harry's jaw, looking into his eyes. "I wasn't saying that because of the binding spell. I was saying it because I mean it. I want to give you what you need now." He laid a simple kiss on Harry's lips. Hermione flushed a bit and looked away. Harry stared up at Draco and smiled. "I'd better do this alone then, as much as I want you there. I have a feeling most people are sort of afraid of you, or just flat out don't like you and won't talk to me if you're there." Draco nodded and gestured for him to lead the way. He noticed Granger was looking at him with a curious expression on her face. Apparently, he surprised her. Harry walked all the way back up to the tower, noticing that night had fallen as he passed windows. How long had they been in the library? He gave the password to the Fat Lady and climbed through the portrait hole. He could already hear loud laughter and happy voices, and a few people actually cheered as he came through. He stared around the room for a moment and Ginny came running over, looking ecstatically happy. "Harry, we won!" she yelled, throwing her arms around him. Harry chuckled and hugged her back. "So I see," he said, looking around the room. Draco gave a small smile and took the bag of books from Harry, making his way through the room to the stairs. Harry watched him go, a little sad, but he knew Draco had been right. He moved over to a table and grabbed a Butterbeer, thinking that a good party was what he might need after all. Draco stood a moment watching Harry and his friends before continuing up the stairs. Once there, he hung up his robes and set to work on the books. He made small piles of books in a row against one wall, getting out a scroll and making a list of the entire contents.

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He sat cross-legged on the floor and was deep in concentration, having pretty much ignored the sounds of the party coming from downstairs. About an hour or so had passed before Harry had had his fill of Butterbeer and crisps, and he said goodnight to all the people who had been talking to him. It had been quite a few more than he would have expected and he was in a much better mood. He was filled with hope again, and he really wanted to see if Draco had made any progress. He made his was up the stairs, not noticing Ron watching him. Draco had finished his initial inventory of the books and was now contemplating which area to focus on first. When the door opened, he looked up and smiled at Harry. Harry smiled back and shut the door. He began trying to untie the red and gold scarf someone had tied around his arm. "Make good progress?" he asked hopefully. Draco nodded, setting aside the quill and scroll and standing up to stretch. "I have an idea of what we have to work with now," he said. "How was the party?" Harry shrugged, but smiled. "Good, I suppose. A lot of people talked to me and actually asked about you without screaming." Draco sat on the edge of the bed and was about to say something, when he yawned. "I guess I am tired." He shrugged. Harry nodded. "It has been a pretty rough day. You want to just go to bed?" Draco nodded, stretching again and picking up the scroll from the floor. "Okay," Harry said simply, kissing Draco lightly before pulling his robes off. Draco kissed him back and then found himself yawning again. He rolled his eyes and started unbuttoning his shirt. Harry smiled and unknotted his tie before he pulled it. Hed just taken his shirt off when there was a soft knock at the door. He looked around at it and then raised an eyebrow at Draco. Draco shrugged and sat down on the bed, gesturing for Harry to answer it. Harry shrugged too, expecting Hermione, and he crossed the room and pulled the door open. It was Ron.

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Ron's eyebrows rose when he took in Harry's shirtless form, and he lowered his head and covered his eyes with one hand. Harry crossed his arms over his chest and stared at Ron, his eyes narrowed. "What?" he asked, not saying anything more than that. Ron sighed. "Can I come in for a moment?" he asked quietly. Harry raised an eyebrow. "You sure you want to? You might catch queer." Ron sighed again. "Harry, please?" he said in a strained tone. Harry narrowed his eyes again, but then moved so that Ron could come in. Draco sat and regarded Weasley, surprised, but not unhappy to see him. He didn't like him, but he knew that Harry was upset with things the way they had been. Ron looked at Draco for a split second before turning to Harry. What?" Harry asked again, arms still crossed. "I just I just wanted to say that I'm sorry," Ron said quietly, looking hard at the floor. Harry snorted, but he couldn't deny that his heart leapt. "Really, I am," Ron continued. "I you skipped the game and shouted at everyone, and I just know that you wouldn't do that unless unless something really was going on, erm, between you and Malfoy ...." Draco nodded, silently acknowledging the apology without making eye contact or saying anything. He waited for Harry's reaction. Harry stared at Ron for a moment. "After all that's happened, it took me missing a Quidditch game for you to realise I was serious?" Ron frowned. "Do you know how lame that sounds?" "Well, I'm just sorry, okay?" Ron said a bit defensively. Harry stared at him for another long moment. "Fine," he said finally. "Fine," said Ron. They stared at each other for a second. "I guess I'll talk to you tomorrow then." Ron said simply. "Yeah," Harry said just as simply. Ron shrugged and left the room. Harry shut the door behind him, fighting to keep the smile off his

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face. Draco didn't bother to keep a straight face. "Gryffindors are very, very weird." He smirked. Harry had to smile at that. He sighed happily and finished getting undressed. He felt like leaping into the air, but held back and climbed into bed and waited for Draco. Draco stood and removed his trousers, still shaking his head at the wrong of Gryffindor relations. Finally, he crawled into bed beside Harry. "Just like that?" he asked. "Yeah, pretty much. Things'll probably be awkward tomorrow, but he'll be completely normal by Monday." Harry smiled again. Draco rolled his eyes and sighed. "I will never understand your House," he said, laying on his back and closing his eyes. "Probably not." Harry sighed, throwing a leg over Draco's and resting his head on his shoulder. Draco wrapped his arm around Harry and smiled. At least Harry was happy now. That was what mattered. Harry had fallen asleep in such a good mood, or at least as good a mood as he could be in given the circumstances. He was not happy to be awoken from his peaceful sleep by something cold pressed against him. He tried to wriggle away from it, but it was all around him. He groggily opened his eyes and blinked a few times, not really sure what was going on. He groaned and turned on his side and that's where he found the source of the coldness. Draco was cold and shivering, just like he had been in the hospital wing. Harry sat up quickly. "Draco?" he asked automatically, even though he knew exactly what was wrong. There was no response from the unconscious blond. His skin was cold as ice, and he was shivering so hard his teeth were chattering. He clutched at Harry. Harry bit his lip. He reached over Draco to grab the lube off the nightstand as quickly as he could. Something really needed to be done about this. It had the potential to be very serious. What if they got separated somehow? Draco would die just from being away from Harry. Harry willed himself to get hard and sighed with relief as he felt it beginning to happen. He opened the lubricant jar and slicked his own cock, spending quite a bit of time on it to help speed up the

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process of getting fully erect. He turned Draco on his stomach and prepared him very quickly, almost taking no time at all. He pulled his hips up a bit and pushed in. Something really, really needed to be done about this. Draco shuddered at Harry's entrance, groaning, but still unconscious. Harry sighed with frustration and pumped his hips a few times. "Come on, Draco," he whispered more to himself than to the boy beneath him. "Come on." Draco felt like his limbs were made of ice, but there was warmth that radiated from his contact with Harry. He could feel himself being filled, Harry's magic beginning to radiate from inside. There was a pain too, but it was distant compared to the warmth. He moaned and clutched at the sheets below him. Harry sighed again and shook his head to get the hair out of his eyes. He couldn't deny that what he was doing felt good of course it did, it was sex, but he didn't like doing it this way at all. He felt ridiculous, like he was trying to fuck some kind of doll or a corpse. That made him shiver. He pushed that thought out of his mind. Harry went a bit faster as he saw Draco's hands beginning to pull at the bedding. Draco took deep shuddering breaths and rocked back into Harry, meeting his thrusts. Harry closed his eyes. Finally, that was a bit better, but he still didn't like doing this. He imagined what Draco would look like if he were like he normally was during sex, all warm and sweaty and hot not this cold emptiness. Harry groaned at the image in his head and pumped harder. Draco had not been aroused, but now his cock began to twitch with Harry's thrusts. His hands and feet actually hurt as feeling returned to them. Draco gasped at the dual sensations. "Come on," Harry whispered again, his eyes still closed. He wanted to get this over with. It was horrible to think that, but he couldn't help it. There wasn't much he could do but thrust until Draco started responding fully. "Yours," Draco whispered, barely audible, but he was beginning to wake up. He fisted the sheets and spread his legs further, beginning to enjoy the sensation of Harry's body pressing into his as

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his cock filled him. Harry groaned with a little satisfaction. "That's it, love," he said, breathing heavily. "That's it, Draco. Come back to me." "Harry," the blond gasped. "Harry, please." He stretched himself open and shuddered at each thrust, feeling his own cock hard between his body and the bed. Harry groaned at that. He continued thrusting, feeling the warmth returning to Draco's body. He let his head drop and watched his cock sliding in and out of Draco. It wasn't as hot as it was mesmerising; he wasn't quite in the mood for anything to be hot. "Harry, Harry," Draco was chanting, his own hips rising to meet the other boy's. Harry sped up. He could feel the pleasure pooling, and he knew he was going to come. He'd been thrusting for a while now and it frustrated him that he could only last until Draco finally began acting normal. "Draco, I'm going to come," he warned, letting out a gasping breath. "Yes, please," Draco begged, not caring if he came, only wanting more from Harry. Harry gasped one last time and held his breath. He was able to get a few more thrusts out, but inevitably, he was coming now. He didnt cry out, just clenched his jaw and let out a long breath that hissed through his teeth. Draco shuddered as the energy from Harry slid through him. It didn't feel as good as it usually did, but it chased away the cold. Harry was still for a few moments, panting above Draco, trying to catch his breath. He pulled out and quickly pushed Draco onto his back and grasped his cock in one hand. He pumped his fist over it, still panting a bit. Draco reached out his hand and placed it over Harry's on his cock. "No," he gasped. Harry frowned and looked at him. "What?" he asked confusedly, stilling his hand. "Just hold me, please," Draco whispered, arms reaching out to him. Harry sighed and nodded, pulling Draco into his arms. He stroked his hair and held him close.

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Draco wrapped his arms around him and burrowed his face into Harry's chest. "It happened again?" he asked, knowing the answer already. "Yeah," Harry said quietly. "I don't like it." Draco looked at the window, noticing it was still dark outside. "I woke you?" he asked. Harry nodded. "It's all right though," he said softly, running his hand along Draco's back. Draco was quiet for a while, rubbing his face against Harry's chest. "Can you get back to sleep?" Harry shrugged. "I don't know," he said. He looked at the clock. It was four in the morning. "We probably should, I suppose." He didn't know if he was going to be able to now though. Draco raised his head, peering at Harry. "I'm hungry." Harry raised an eyebrow and almost laughed, but he realised that he was hungry too. They hadn't eaten anything besides breakfast. "What do you want?" he sighed. "Pudding?" Draco smiled, sitting up, but keeping a hand on Harry's chest. Harry grinned and put his hands behind his head. "I'll really feel kind of bad if I wake Dobby. Do you think we can trust food from my other house-elf? Would you be willing to eat it?" "He seemed to like me." Draco smirked. "You on the other hand, ...." Harry rolled his eyes. "I'll call him and you can ask for a really, really big pudding," he said, smiling lopsidedly. Draco smiled, reaching for his wand and lighting the bedside candle. "Tea too," he added. "Whatever you want," Harry said simply. He didn't sit up as he said into the silence, "Kreacher?" It took a bit longer than last time for Kreacher to appear. He finally showed up with a loud crack that made Harry wince. "Master called?" he asked, voice thick. His eyes landed on Draco again. Harry sighed. "Yes, give him whatever he wants," he said, pointing to Draco. "Master is in bed with the Malfoy boy again. Kreacher thinks it's very odd ..." Kreacher muttered before turning to face Draco

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completely. Draco looked disdainfully at the elf. "Silence your impertinent chatter. Bring me a large pudding and full tea service." Kreacher bowed very, very low to the ground. "Yes, yes, sir, anything for one so full of goodness as you," he babbled. Harry raised an eyebrow. "Get going, Kreacher," he said loudly. Kreacher rose from his bow and glared at Harry for a split second before leaving. Draco smirked at Harry. "See, he likes me." Harry rolled his eyes. "It's only because your mother was a Black, and I'm only a filthy half-blood." Draco nodded. "That's part of it, but not everything. You just don't understand house-elves." Harry raised his eyebrows. "Dobby gets on with me just fine," he said fairly. Draco snorted. "Dobby is insane. And he still likes you to tell him what to do." Harry snorted too. "Yes, you do seem to excel at that." "Are you going to argue that you never like being told what to do?" Draco asked, one eyebrow raised. Harry laughed harder. "I meant that you excel at telling others what to do, but thanks for letting me know you like to be told what to do, too. I'll keep that in mind." "You didn't answer the question, Harry." Draco smirked. Harry shook his head. "Yeah, during some things," he said, chuckling at Draco's suggestiveness. "Now imagine you felt that way all the time," Draco said, suddenly serious. "Imagine if it made you feel safe and needed." Harry's brows pulled together. "I'd keep you safe and I'd still need you even if we weren't bound, Draco," he said, sitting up and kissing Draco gently on the cheek. Draco huffed. "I am not talking about me. I am talking about house-elves." He frowned. Okay, so maybe it was a little about himself. Harry shook his head and fell back on the bed. Kreacher finally came back, holding a tray with everything Draco had asked for. "Here it is, sir," he said, handing the tray over to Draco and bowing deeply again.

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"Oh, just go, Kreacher," Harry said impatiently. Kreacher glared at him one last time before he left again. Harry sighed and hoped he wouldn't have to see him again for a while. "Barmy nutter," he said under his breath. Draco shook his head and pulled the tray toward himself and Harry. "You aren't very nice to your house-elf, Harry." Harry raised an eyebrow. "Would you be nice to that?" he asked incredulously. "Besides, he did something that I'll never forgive." Draco poured the tea, smiling when he noticed that the house-elf had provided two place settings. He added the sugar for both of them and the milk for himself. Harry sighed and sat up again, picking up his tea cup. "Thanks," he said to Draco for making it. "What did he do?" Draco asked, serving up the pudding for both of them. Harry frowned and stared at his tea. "He helped kill my godfather," he said quietly after a full minute of just sitting there. "His Master?" Draco asked, shocked. Harry nodded, the memory bringing up all that pain and anger. "Sirius told him to get out of the room, but he said 'get out' and Kreacher took it literally." He glanced at Draco, frowning heavily now. "He went to your place. That's how he found out about Voldemort's plan to get me to the Ministry. Your mum told him." Harry closed his eyes and leaned against the headboard. "And he did what with that knowledge?" Draco asked, setting down his tea and laid a hand on Harry's arm. Harry sighed. "I guess your mum, or whoever, told him that if I came round asking for Sirius, to tell me that he was gone. Voldemort had made me believe that Sirius had been captured, but he hadn't been. I went to the Ministry, thinking that was where he was and it turned out to be a trap." He gritted his teeth for a second. "Sirius came when the Order found out I was there, and he was killed." He paused again. "I'm an idiot. If anyone's to blame, it's me." Draco pulled Harry to him, wrapping his arms about him, one hand cradling the other boy's head against his chest. "No, you aren't." Harry sighed. No one had ever made him feel as comfortable as Draco did. He'd cried too much over Sirius for the tears to return again but his heart ached. After a few long moments Harry sighed

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again. "That was last year. There's nothing I can do just sitting here and thinking about it," he said finally. Draco nodded. "Let's eat our pudding and then get some sleep." Harry nodded too and sat up. Once they were finished with their food, they went back to sleep, or at least Draco did. Harry stayed up, thinking about things he hadn't thought about since Draco had come into the picture. He marvelled at how much his life had changed in just such a short time. It was a while before he was asleep too.

CHAPTER THIRTY

A Message
May 22 Draco made his way up from the dungeons to Gryffindor Tower. Prefect duties out of the way for the day, he was looking forward to some quiet time with Harry. The Fat Lady no longer challenged him but instead, had started flirting with him. He actually preferred the more hostile approach. Finally, he stepped through the portrait hole and heard laughter. Harry sat with his back to him, and Draco leaned next to the portrait hole, listening. "All this shit going on with Voldemort and Death Eaters and all anyone can do is ask me whether or not I'm shagging Draco Malfoy," Harry said with a sigh. "You'd think they would be more interested in other things." Ron, who was still uncomfortable with the whole thing, turned a bit red. Hermione tsked. "It is rather stupid," she said. "Yeah, tell me about it," Harry continued. "Romilda Vane actually asked me if it was true he had a snake tattooed across his back." Hermione and Ron both laughed. "What did you tell her?" asked Hermione, amused. "I told her it's a sexy dragon and that it's on his chest," Harry finished, smirking and laughing. Draco snorted, the small sound catching the attention of the Gryffindors at the table. He was leaning against the wall shaking his head, small smile on his face and arms across his chest. Harry looked around at the sound, still chuckling. "Hey," he said, delighted to see Draco. He held out his hand. "Come here and sit with me." Ron and Hermione were still laughing. Draco pushed off the wall and took Harry's hand and the chair indicated. It felt good to sit down, even better to be with Harry. "So besides being tattooed," he rolled his eyes, "what else have I missed?"

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Harry shrugged. "Not much," he said, staring around at all the books littering the table. "We've been searching, but we still haven't found much of anything." He sounded let down about it. "There's still a lot to look through though," Hermione said cheerily, obviously trying to lead Harry away from glum thoughts. Ron nodded next to her. Draco pulled a few books from his own book bag and put them on the table. One of the books he had been reading was Harry's Potions book. He handed it back to him so he could have it for class the next day. "Thanks," Harry muttered before trying to quickly stuff it away before Hermione could see, but she was too quick for him. "Harry, honestly, are you still using that book?" she asked crossly. Harry sighed. "You know I am." She shook her head. "Well, I still don't think it's a good idea for you to be using it. There's Dark Magic in it." Harry sighed. "Hermione, you don't know if there's Dark Magic in it. The Prince was a brilliant bloke! So he might've invented a dodgy spell or two, so what?" "He, he who says it's a he?" "We've been through this," said Harry crossly. "Prince, Hermione, Prince!" She reached into her own bag. "Look at this," she said, pulling out some old newsprint. Harry looked at it. It was an article on some rather unattractive girl named Eileen Prince, who was captain of the Hogwarts Gobstones team. "So?" he said. "Prince!" Hermione said, pointing to the girls surname. After Harry had tossed it aside, Draco picked up the article and read it carefully. The name sounded very familiar to him. He frowned trying to place it. Harry sighed. "You don't really think that girl could've written in the book, do you?" Harry asked. "Why couldn't she have?" Hermione asked, colour high on her cheeks. "I can just tell it's not a girl," Harry said simply. "You don't think a girl would've been clever enough!" Hermione

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said angrily. "How can I think that after hanging around with you?" Harry asked, stung by Hermione's words. "I can just tell it was a bloke. I can tell." Draco frowned and interrupted. "So why does that matter either way?" "Because I want to know who it was!" said Hermione angrily. She turned back to Harry. "I'm going to look up more on this girl, and the first place I'll start is records of old Potions awards." "Enjoy yourself," Harry said sarcastically. Draco shrugged and handed her back the article. "So you object to the book because of the type of magic in it?" he asked her. "There are spells in there that could be dangerous," Hermione said seriously. "Harry's used half of them without knowing what they did." Ron rolled his eyes. "You just haven't got over him outperforming you in Potions," he said. Hermione glared at him. "You don't think I'm mad for still wanting to use the book, do you?" Harry asked Ron. "Course not," said Ron robustly. "He was a genius, the Prince. Anyway ... without his Bezoar tip ...." He drew his finger significantly across his own throat. "I wouldn't be here to discuss it." Draco sucked in a breath and froze. He had been about to comment on the book but now found himself wanting to change the subject. He yawned, hoping Harry would get the hint. "Yeah, lucky that," Harry said, nodding. He looked over at Draco when he heard him yawn. "Tired?" he asked, interlacing his fingers with the hand he was still holding. Draco nodded, squeezing Harry's hand. Harry sighed. "Well, we're gonna go to bed," he told Ron and Hermione. Hermione was still looking cross as she turned her eyes on him. Ron shrugged and nodded, wearing an odd-looking face like he always did when Harry said he and Draco were both going to bed. Harry shook his head at them. "We'll look through more tomorrow; hopefully we'll find something. Night," he said, and he got to his feet and gathered his stuff up before pulling Draco up the

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stairs with him. Draco sighed in relief when they were finally locked in their room. It had become a kind of sanctuary for him. He set his things down and began to undress. He winced when he went to hang his robes up and hoped Harry hadn't noticed. Harry did notice and he frowned at Draco suspiciously as he got undressed himself. He didn't say anything though, waiting to see if Draco would. Draco undressed a bit gingerly, trying not to show any distress, and finally slipped into bed without turning to face Harry. Harry knew Draco wasn't going to say anything now. "What's the matter with you?" he asked with a raised eyebrow as he pulled his underwear off. "Tired," Draco said, pulling the covers up around himself and closing his eyes. Harry wanted to laugh at that. Was that really Draco's answer to everything? "Draco Malfoy, you answer me right now," Harry said seriously. Draco huffed. "Tired and in pain," he said through gritted teeth. Harry narrowed his eyes. "In pain from what?" he asked, climbing onto the bed to sit beside Draco and look down at him. Draco didn't open his eyes. "Just a bit of trouble with some of my House," he said dismissively. Harry's eyes narrowed further. "What the hell did they do?" he asked angrily. Draco opened his eyes and turned his annoyed gaze upon Harry. "Just Crabbe and Goyle delivering a message. Next time I will be more careful." "Delivering a message?" Harry spat. "What the hell's that supposed to mean?" Draco sighed. "Just a reminder of what I am supposed to be doing." Harry scowled. "Did they attack you or something? I'll fucking kill them." He knew it was a very rash thing to say, but he was so filled with anger in that moment that he didn't care. "No, you won't," Draco snapped. "I will handle my own House problems." "I'm not going to let them put their hands on you!" Harry said

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angrily. Draco frowned but laid a hand on Harry's. "If you interfere, you will make things worse for me," he said quietly. Harry stared at Draco for a moment, his eyes still filled with fury. He finally moved and huffed loudly before throwing himself onto the bed and getting angrily under the covers. "Fine," he said, "but if I see it, I'll fucking curse their pricks off." Draco laughed and then winced again. "I won't let them catch me off guard again," he assured Harry. Harry rolled over to face Draco. "Don't," he said seriously. "I will do my best." Draco nodded, serious expression on his face. "Kiss me?" Harry sighed and moved forward to do what Draco had asked. Draco relaxed into Harry's touch, enjoying the kiss. This was what made it all worthwhile. He would do what it took to keep going, for this ... for Harry. Harry smiled against Draco's lips and then pulled back, their noses still touching. "Now I'm going to have something else to worry about," he said quietly. Draco arched an eyebrow. "Bloody hero complex," he muttered before kissing Harry again. "I ... (kiss) ... can't ... (kiss) ... help it," Harry murmured, his eyes sliding shut. "Mmm," Draco hummed, pulling Harry tight and letting his own eyelids drop closed as well. Their snogging got pretty heated before Harry forced himself to pull away. "You're sore," he said, breathing a little heavy. "Never stopped me before," Draco teased, his hands caressing down Harry's body. Harry sucked in a sharp breath. "You sure?" he asked, already coming down to kiss again. "I always want you." Draco smiled, one hand squeezing one of Harry's arse cheeks. "Mmm," Harry let out slowly. "Who tops? You pick," he said against the skin of Draco's neck. He licked it slowly. Wicked smile on his face, Draco chuckled. "How about if I lay here and you ride my cock?" Harry's heart sped up and a sudden warmth flooded his belly. He

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chuckled. "Figures you'd want it that way," he said, continuing to lick and suck at Draco's skin. "Feeling lazy," Draco smiled, "but I want to be inside you." One hand continued to fondle Harry's arse. Harry smiled happily, if somewhat goofily. "As you wish," he said, sitting up and grabbing the lube from the handy bedside table. He crawled between Draco's legs and then lay back on his elbows, facing the blond. He took the lid off the jar and dipped two fingers inside. "Wanna watch?" he asked, eyes bright and directly focused on Draco's. Draco propped himself up on his elbows so he could see better. "Yes." He grinned. Harry smirked and flushed, not with embarrassment, but with pleasure. He trailed his oil-slicked fingers down his skin, leaving a wet trail on his stomach that shone in the candlelight. He slid them slowly along his own cock and bit his lip, eyes still focused on Draco's face. He rubbed at his entrance for a few seconds, making little gasping noises that were only for show really, although he was terribly aroused. "Oh, yes," Draco hissed and licked his lips. His cock had been hardening while he held Harry, but now it was twitching with anticipation. His eyes greedily drank in the sight before him. Harry smiled at Draco's reaction and spread his legs open wider. He leant back a bit more so that Draco could see better. He slid one finger inside and arched his neck, still watching Draco from down his nose. "Mmm, look at what you do to me, Draco," he said huskily, with many accompanying gasping breaths. He moved the finger in and out a few times, his cock so hard it hurt. "I touch myself all the time thinking about you." Draco groaned, feeling like his eyes would roll back in his head if he didn't concentrate on watching. "You are a tease," he chided. "Fuck me, please." Harry chuckled, pushing in another finger. He moved them both in and out a bit. "I can't wait to be stretched around you," he said, ignoring Draco's pleading. "I can't either," Draco complained, loving the view, but aching to be inside Harry. Harry smiled again and bit his lip. He hooked his fingers to find

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his own prostate and really did cry out. "Fuck," he cursed, his eyes sliding closed. He added another finger, eager for Draco's cock now. "God, I'm gonna ride you so fucking hard," he said, meaning every word of it. "Now, Harry, now," Draco cried out, feeling like he was going to come just watching Harry. Harry withdrew his fingers and scrambled for the lube again. He slicked his hand and pumped Draco's cock a few times before getting on top of him and crouching strangely over him, holding Draco's cock at his entrance. Draco was trembling with need by the time Harry touched him and climbed on top. "Oh, Merlin, yes," he begged. "Harry, please." Harry closed his eyes and held himself steady. He began sinking slowly onto Draco, a low keening sound coming from deep in his throat until it left him in a loud gasping breath. Draco fell back on the bed when Harry sank onto his cock. His hands grasped the bed covers, and he was gasping with the effort to hold still and let Harry do this. Once Harry was fully seated he just sat there for a moment, his head thrown back, breathing heavily. He'd never felt so full. No other time Draco had fucked him had he ever gone so deep. Once he finally felt he could think enough to move, he slowly raised his hips just a tad before sitting fully on Draco again, whimpering with pleasure. "Oh, Gods, Harry!" Draco thrashed his head in an effort to move something. "So deep, so tight!" Harry's head fell forward and then rolled a bit on his neck. He moved his hips again, sort of rotating them instead of moving them up. He gasped again. He made a strangled noise and rose up. Draco felt so fucking good inside him. He felt like he could feel him throbbing, although he was probably just feeling himself. "Fuck me, Draco," he said, voice low and almost a growling sound. Draco grabbed Harry's thighs and began thrusting up into him. "Yes, oh, yes," he was moaning as he thrashed his head. "Oh, fuck, Draco!" Harry cried pushing down against him in an attempt to make him go even deeper. His cock dripped a long sticky, wet mess down onto Draco's stomach. Why hadn't they tried this sooner? Oh ... they had ... but why hadn't they tried this with Harry

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sooner? He wanted to stay like that on top of Draco forever. "So fantastic, so beautiful," Draco gasped, arching his back, regardless of the pain from his earlier problem. He slid his right hand up Harry's thigh and wrapped long fingers around his cock. Harry cried out loudly in absolute ecstasy. "Oh, fuck yes, fuck yes, please," he moaned. He fell forward a bit to brace himself with his hands on Draco's stomach, still thrusting down against him and trying to thrust into his hand. There was no way in hell he was going to be able to keep up much longer, and it had only been a few minutes. He groaned at the thought of coming, not wanting to yet. Draco was moaning loudly, he fingers fisting Harry in time with his thrusts. "Yes, yes," he repeated, his blond hair nearly obscuring his face as he tossed his head. Harry smiled hugely, his mouth open and his neck and back arching so far he swore he almost snapped his spine. He came hard, shouting Draco's name at the top of his lungs. His shout turned into a long moan, and his eyes even rolled. Draco was lost in the energy and feel of Harry around and atop him. When Harry came, the feel of him clenching around Draco's cock, his seed and magic spilling over him, brought the blond to completion as well, arching into him. There were no words for the feeling, and he couldn't have told you if he'd said anything. It was pure delight and he hung on to it. It was one of the most intense orgasms Harry had ever experienced. It started from what seemed to be the centre of his body and reached every nerve he possessed. He felt boneless and he didn't even know how he was still sitting up. Draco felt warm to the centre of himself. He laid breathing in gasps, his eyes closed and his entire body shuddering with waves of pleasure. Harry couldn't stay upright any longer. He slipped sideways and lay face down, his head turned in Draco's direction. Draco gasped again as Harry moved but was too happy to move himself. He turned his head to face Harry. "I love you," he whispered. Harry's eyes fluttered open and closed a few times, his breathing very slowly returning to normal. "It just gets better and better," he said with a happy sigh, his fringe splayed over his eyes.

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Draco would have nodded, but that would have required he move. He smiled dreamily at his lover. "Yes," he said quietly. Harry smiled too. "Oh, I love you, too," he said, and it was proof of how great the sex had been that it had taken him that long to realise that Draco had said it. He laughed at himself. Draco just smiled back. He looked at Harry's face and thought there could be nothing more beautiful. He would do anything for Harry, anything.

CHAPTER THIRTY-ONE

Falling Apart
May 25 "Harry?" Harry was looking through yet another book from Sirius' house. His eyes hurt from staring at it. "Harry?" He wasn't paying attention to anything else, and he'd been that way for at least the past few days. "Harry?" He finally looked up to see Hermione staring at him, eyes filled with worry. "What?" he snapped irritably. "Harry, I'm worried about you," she said for what must have been the millionth time. "I don't care," Harry said, having to stifle a yawn. He went back to reading. "Mate?" Ron cut in. "When's the last time you've eaten?" Harry glared at him for a single second. "This morning." Hermione huffed. "You hardly ate anything at all this morning! You took those books with you to breakfast!" Harry snapped the book shut, suddenly becoming angry. "Do you not get it?" he stage whispered furiously. "He'll die if I don't find something." "You're killing yourself trying to save him!" Hermione said shrilly. "I want to find something to help him too, but you can't just forget about everything else! Something could happen at any time, and if you're ... ill or something, then what on earth are you going to do then?" McGonagall stepped through the portrait hole, and frowning, scanned the room. She saw the trio and made her way over to them. Harry scowled heavily at Hermione. "I don't care about that!" he lied. In truth, he'd been thinking about Voldemort non-stop since it had appeared in the Prophet that he and Draco were a couple. He

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could feel something coming and it made him want to get the serpent off of Draco's arm even more. "Harry, you can't just stop caring! You're going mad!" "Well, good for me!" Harry said loudly now. "McGonagall," Ron interjected suddenly. Harry turned his head to see the professor walking towards them. McGonagall frowned and nodded to them. "Harry," she said, "you should come with me." Harry scowled, very much unwilling to leave his books. "What for?" he said rather rudely. "Mr Potter," she said sharply. "There has been an ... incident." She glanced at the other two and then lowered her voice. "Mr Malfoy is in the hospital wing." Harry took a sharp breath and jumped to his feet quickly. He didn't even wait for McGonagall to say anything else, nor did he spare Ron and Hermione a glance. He began walking quickly for the portrait hole, intending to go straight to the infirmary. McGonagall hurried to catch up with him, joining him on the other side of the portrait hole. She didn't say anything but strode beside him through the halls. Harry was shaking and began walking even faster, wanting desperately to break into a run. "What's happened?" he asked, voice higher than usual. "He says he fell down the stairs," she answered flatly. Harry's eyes narrowed to slits. Draco Malfoy would never fall down stairs. He finally reached the hospital wing doors and flung them open, rushing inside. Draco was lying in one of the normal beds in the main hospital. His face was a mess. Covered in cuts and bruises, one arm was in a sling and one leg suspended by some type of spell so that it hung a few inches off the bed. Harry gasped at the sight of Draco and ran over to his bed. "Merlin, what's happened?" he asked, not sure what to do with his hands. He didn't look like he should be touched. Draco opened his eyes, or tried to. His right eye was swollen closed, so he looked out at Harry from one bloodshot grey eye. "Hi," he rasped. "I'm sorry." Harry looked at him incredulously. "Sorry for what?" he asked,

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hands still moving over top of Draco awkwardly. "Fell," he said, closing his eye and sighing. "You did not fall, Draco," Harry said angrily. "What happened to you?" he asked. Draco kept his eye closed, his hand that was not in the sling, fluttering a bit and opening palm up, reaching for Harry. Harry grabbed Draco's hand gently and kissed it. He sighed. He had a feeling he knew what had really happened to Draco. "Are you not going to tell me?" he asked. "You know already," Draco said quietly. Harry closed his eyes for a moment to keep from roaring with rage. "What did they do?" he growled through his teeth. Draco opened an eye, looking at Harry. "Nothing you can do anything about. And, for the record, stairs were involved." Harry wanted to run from the hospital wing at that moment and kill Crabbe and Goyle. He somehow managed to stay put. "Why?" he spat, pulling up a chair in order to get right up close to Draco's face. "Because I need you here," Draco said quietly. "You need me here? Draco, I'll be here, just let me go and Merlin I don't even know what I want to do to them!" Harry was so angry, steam could've come flying out his ears and he wouldn't have been surprised. "See," Draco said, starting to smile, but then wincing when he realised his jaw hurt too much. "You have more important things to worry about." Harry sighed, Draco's statement calming him somewhat. "What the hell did they do to you?" he asked, pained expression in place. "Since I passed out before it was done, I am not sure." Draco sighed, squeezing Harry's hand with his. Harry winced and kissed Draco's hand again. "Who found you?" "Filch. At the foot of the main stairs," he said. Harry winced again. "Bloody hell," he hissed, and then he turned burning eyes on Draco's face. "This won't happen again," he assured him. Harry spent the next couple of days poring over more books. It was practically all he did anymore besides eat little, sleep little, and have sex with Draco. Perhaps Hermione was right, maybe he was going

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mad, but he couldn't put the books down. He was consumed with the need to find a way to remove that serpent. He'd also taken to watching his map all the time again. He was keeping an eye on Crabbe and Goyle. For the most part, they stayed in the dungeons, but sometimes he couldn't find them anywhere and that made him very nervous. The only place Harry could think they were going was the Room of Requirement. He still didn't know exactly what Draco had been up to in there before he'd been with Harry, and so Harry wasn't really sure what Crabbe and Goyle were doing. He hadn't told Draco about it yet. It was now Draco's third day in the hospital wing. He was almost fully healed and would probably be ready to go back to their room in Gryffindor very soon, if not that night. It was already after classes, and Harry was sitting at the edge of Draco's bed, still looking at books. His eyes had dark circles under them, and he was getting even thinner than he was already. He hadn't stopped eating, like Draco had before, he was just afraid of wasting time. Draco looked up from the book in his lap. His attention had been wandering, and he could no longer concentrate. Instead, he sat watching Harry. He loved watching Harry, but wasn't comfortable with what he was seeing these days. He frowned. Harry blinked his eyes a few times and shook his head to get the sleepiness out of him. He didn't notice Draco was watching him. That in itself was troubling, because Harry had even started ignoring him to read and take notes. "I miss you," Draco said quietly. Harry heard Draco say something, but he didn't really discern the words. "What?" he asked absently, looking up for a quick second before jotting something down. Draco sat staring at Harry. He shook his head, sighing. Harry didn't notice. He looked quickly over at his map, which was lying open next to him on the bed, and picked it up to scan it real quick, looking for those two loathsome names. "Show me the map, Harry," Draco said, reaching out his hand. Harry frowned at Draco. "For what?" he asked, holding it out of Draco's reach. He didn't know why he hadn't told Draco about Crabbe and Goyle. He didn't want to upset him, he supposed. "Because I asked to see it." Draco sighed. "You told me about it

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before, remember? I thought you trusted me." Harry raised an eyebrow and then shrugged. He handed the map over. It wasn't like Draco would notice that Crabbe and Goyle were missing out of the hundreds of dots on the paper. Draco studied the map. "So it shows everyone at Hogwarts and where they are," he said. "Does it show who is in the Room of Requirement?" Harry eyes widened just a bit. "Erm, why would you ask that?" he said, and he cursed himself and his inability to get anything past Draco. "Because you said you could tell that I had been going in there," he said, watching Harry carefully. "What are you hiding from me?" Harry looked at Draco and smiled. "Nothing," he said dismissively, shrugging. Draco crossed his arms across his chest and his face hardened. "Get out," he said quietly. Harry was very taken aback by that. "What? Why?" he spluttered. "Get out, Potter," Draco said coldly. Harry's heart dropped and his stomach swooped in a decidedly very unpleasant way. His breath quickened. "Why?" he chanced again quietly. Draco closed his eyes. "Because you aren't really here anyway. I don't want this." Harry's breath sped up even more. "What?" he asked weakly. "Don't want what?" His voice cracked a bit. "You ignore me and you lie to me," Draco snapped, "and you have the nerve to ask me what is wrong?" Harry winced and closed his eyes. He bowed his head and covered his face with his hands. He could feel frustrated tears building up, but he didn't let them fall. He sat there for a full minute. "I'm sorry," he said tiredly through his fingers. Draco watched him. He wanted to take Harry in his arms and help him forget for a while. But he didn't dare. They needed to talk. "You can't keep doing this. This is exactly what I didn't want." "Well, what do you want me to do?" Harry snapped, but then he squeezed his eyes shut and rubbed at his forehead furiously before clenching a hand in his own hair. "I'm sorry," he said again. "I want you back," Draco said. "I want you to spend what time I

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have left actually paying attention to me. I want you to eat and sleep." Harry sighed heavily. "But what if what if there is something and and I miss it or or or don't find it in enough time?" He sighed again. "It's just hard," he let out simply. "What has that got to do with lying to me?" Draco asked. Harry covered his face with his hands again. "I didn't want to upset you. I don't even know why I lied." "What could possibly be worse than spending what time I have left watching you ignore me, lie to me and fall apart?" Draco snarled. Harry sighed and lay down on his back, arms up over his head. He stared up at the ceiling. "I don't know," he said quietly after a while. Draco reached over and picked up the books and papers spread on the bed. He set them aside on one of the bedside tables. He set the strange map with them. He looked down at Harry lying there. "Look at me," he said. Harry slowly turned his bloodshot eyes on Draco. Draco looked into those normally bright green eyes and was almost broken by the pain he saw there. "I love you," he said quietly. "I don't need the hero right now. I need you." Harry looked up at Draco with sad eyes. How was he supposed to turn the hero off? He didn't know. He stared at Draco for a long time. He loved him, Merlin, he loved him so much, but how could he ignore that he was going to die if something didn't happen? Hope was starting to slip away with every turn of a page and every passing day. If Harry could pause time for forever right here, right now, and just look at Draco's beautiful face for the rest of his life, he would, but he couldn't. Who was he kidding? The searching was getting them nowhere, he was wasting away and he knew it, but it took Draco voicing it for him to finally see it truly. Maybe Draco was right. Maybe they should just be together. His eyes threatened to fill with tears at that thought, but he once again held them back. Draco was wrong; he did need a hero, just a different kind. Harry held his arms open for the boy above him. Draco watched the struggle on Harry's face. The boy was such an open book, and he could see the moment he understood what Draco had been saying. Finally, Harry turned back to him and Draco gratefully fell into his arms.

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Harry sighed at the feeling of Draco's familiar weight on top of him. "I'm sorry," he whispered into his hair. Draco clutched at Harry's shirt for a moment, feeling the other boy's arms around him. Then he lifted his head and looked at him. There was so much he wanted to tell Harry, but he was afraid of upsetting him again. So he kissed him. That always seemed to be the thing that Harry understood. Harry kissed him back, very, very gently. Little kisses that barely touched Draco's lips. He pulled Draco against him for another hug. "I won't leave again," he said quietly, but firmly. June 1 It had been another long day of classes and too many books about Dark Magic. Draco's eyes burned, and he couldnt quite keep the horrid images from his mind when he closed his eyes. They had spent the evening arguing over strategy with the other two Gryffindors. Harry had become quite irritable and the other two had eventually excused themselves. Draco closed the book with a snap and sighed. Harry rubbed at his eyes, still breathing a bit heavily from his argument with Ron and Hermione. He knew he shouldn't push away the only other people who were helping Draco and himself, but he couldn't help it. He looked up at Draco as he sighed. Draco shook his head but then began packing up his books and putting them aside. He turned his face away from Harry and began undressing for bed. They hadn't even had sex yet today, and he was not in the mood. Harry had promised it would get better. Sometimes Draco thought that it would be better to have it over with already. Harry watched Draco get undressed, but he wasn't really watching. His mind was elsewhere as it almost always was. He was trying to make things okay between Draco and himself, but it wasn't an easy thing to do, especially when all he could think about when he looked at the blond was what things might be like without him there. He turned and looked at the clock, sighing. "Draco...?" he said quietly, knowing what they had to do. Draco finished laying his clothes aside and turned back to the bed, climbing in under the covers. "What?" he asked. Harry stared at him. "You know what," he said tiredly.

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Draco lay back down and closed his eyes. He was not in the mood to deal with this right now. Harry rubbed his forehead. "Draco, don't start this please," he said, frustrated. "You know we have to or you'll get sick." Honestly, Harry wasn't in the mood either, but hadn't really been in a while. Draco's eyes remained closed. "I don't see that it much matters at this point," he said quietly. That stabbed at Harry's heart like a knife. His eyes itched with something other than tiredness. "Please, Draco," he said from behind the hand on his face. "I have become a burden and a distraction for you," Draco said, eyes opening to regard him. "You aren't focussing your energy on defeating Him anymore. You barely sleep or eat. And the only reason you want to ... touch me right now is because you have to, not because you want me." "That's not true," Harry lied, looking up at Draco. "I love you." Draco didn't even dignify the blatant lie with a verbal answer. He rolled over, his back to Harry, and pulled the covers up. Harry groaned quietly and stood up to get undressed. He moved slowly and tiredly and then climbed into bed. He moved up close to Draco and began kissing across his shoulders. He willed himself to get an erection; it had been the only way to get one for the past few days. Draco gritted his teeth, refusing to respond to Harry's touch. This wasn't the way it was supposed to be. Harry kissed him for a few seconds, but soon stopped when Draco did nothing but lie there. He rested his forehead against Draco's skin and sighed, his eyes closed. "I don't know what you want me to do," he said in a pained voice. "I told you already," Draco said quietly. He squeezed his eyes shut, trying to hold back tears that threatened to fall. Harry rolled onto his back and stared at the canopy. "I've been paying attention to you," he said flatly, afraid putting any emotion into his voice would make him cry. Draco clenched his jaw and sat up, getting out of the bed and starting to re-dress himself. "I can't do this anymore," he said, his hands shaking as he tried to button his shirt. Harry watched him for a second before sitting up. "Please don't

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do this, Draco," he said quietly, his eyes closed. Draco's hands were shaking so hard he couldn't do the buttons. He reached for his trousers and pulled them on, managing those fasteners at least. He slipped his feet into his shoes without even bothering with socks. Harry threw the covers off and got up from the bed. He came up behind Draco and grabbed his arm. "Please," he said with just an edge of desperation. Draco pulled his arm away from Harry roughly. He reached for his robes. Harry snatched Draco's robes before he could get them. "No," he said, moving in front of Draco to block his way. "No, please don't leave." Draco hung his head for a moment, hands clenched by his side. "Let me go, Harry," he said. Harry's breathing was erratic now. "No," he said, not moving. "Why?" Draco said, not meeting his eyes but staring toward the door. Harry was at a loss for words for a moment, but then, "I love you," he said finally. "I don't want you to leave." Draco stood still staring at the door. "I know," he said quietly. "But if loving me is going to destroy you, then I need to leave sooner than later." "You think that's what you've done?" Harry asked angrily, his eyes beginning to shine. "You think you've destroyed me or or are going to destroy me? News flash, Draco. I'm Harry Potter. If you don't destroy me, then Voldemort will." He closed his eyes. "It's just going to be the same when I have to kill him. Nothing comes easy for me." A thrill ran down Draco's spine, and he took a sharp breath, his head coming up. He looked back at Harry's face, seeing the spark in those green eyes and his own went wide. Harry opened his eyes again at Draco's gasp, still staring at him angrily. "What?" he asked, still blocking the doorway. Draco's eyes narrowed again. He was thinking fast, trying to figure out the right button to push. "Yeah, Potter, you think you will find the answers in a book? It just isnt happening, and if you keep thinking it is, I won't be the last person you love to die." He hoped

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that would fan the flame he saw there. Harry's eyes narrowed. "What the fuck do you expect me to do?" he said loudly now. "You're just like everyone else. You think I just know the answers? You think I can just snap my fingers and everything will be okay? I may be the 'Chosen One' or whatever the hell that bullshit is, but I'm just as clueless as everyone else is!" Draco's face flushed and his breathing sped up. He looked with darkened grey eyes at Harry. He shrugged his shoulders, allowing the shirt to drop off his shoulders. Then he began unfastening his trousers. Harry looked at Draco, still angry. "What the hell are you doing?" he spat. Draco slipped out of his shoes and dropped his trousers, his cock standing hard already. Harry was very confused. His eyes travelled down Draco's body and landed on his erect cock. "Draco ...?" he asked, one eyebrow raised. Draco smirked, noticing that Harry's cock was hard now too. He turned around and placed his hands on the bed, spread his legs, and looked back over his shoulder. Harry's breath caught in his throat. His mouth fell open slightly and his heart sped up. He swallowed. "Oh, Merlin," he let out, voice high. "I'm yours," Draco said in a low sexy voice as he rotated his hips a little. Harry moaned quietly, and practically ran to get the lube from the bedside table, forgetting his magical ability to Summon it. Draco seemed to have that affect on him. He stumbled twice on his way back. Draco chuckled, watching Harry's eagerness. That was what he needed. He needed Harry to want him. Harry slicked his cock, and his fingers, quicker than he had ever done and simply dropped the jar when he was finished, not bothering to put the lid back on. His eyes slid closed as he plunged two fingers into Draco's arse. Merlin, it felt like it had been ages since he'd last felt this way. Draco groaned as Harry's fingers sunk into him. He pushed back against him and trembled with the need he felt in himself. He wanted

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Harry like this; he loved his fire. "You want me, you claim me," he hissed. Harry moaned again. "I want you," he said moving his hand furiously and then replacing it with his hard, dripping cock. "Yes, yours," Draco gasped, locking his legs and arms to brace himself. "Fuck me, Harry!" Harry slammed his hips forward into that tight heat, gripping Draco's sides with bruising force. "Fuck, yes," he groaned. This made him feel alive somehow; this anger, this lust. "Yes, yes," Draco growled, pushing back against Harry's thrusts. "Show me, make me yours!" Harry thrust even harder. He gritted his teeth, his heavy breaths hissing though them. Draco's arms collapsed, and he was now facedown with his arms spread out on the bed. His legs trembled, and he felt like he could feel Harry so deep he could taste him. The other boy's magic was crackling over and through him like lightning, painful but powerful. Harry closed his eyes and fucked Draco for all he was worth. It was as if he were making up for the slump he'd been in. His orgasm took him by surprise a few minutes later. He felt as if Draco ripped it from him. He came and he kept coming for what felt like forever. "You're fucking mine," he said angrily with one last hard thrust. "Yes, yours!' Draco shouted as lightning struck his spine, making him arch against Harry. Fire ran through him, the green fire that was Harry's anger, lust and raw magical power. Harry's knees buckled, and it took everything he had not to collapse. "Fuck, Draco," he said weakly, eyes still closed. He didn't want to pull out, he felt like being connected to Draco was his lifeline. "Cover me, hold me, stay in me," Draco begged, allowing his upper body to rest on the bed. Harry let out a shaky breath and draped himself over Draco's back. "I love you," he said just as weakly as before. He laid a kiss on Draco's shoulder, doing his best to stay in their awkward position. "Don't ever think I don't or that I'd want anything different, no matter how crazy you make me." Draco would have laughed, but with Harry's weight on him, it came out as a wheeze. He squeezed his arse, clenching around

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Harry's softening cock. Harry twitched, Draco's movement sort of uncomfortable, but he didn't care. He still didn't make any move to pull out. "I love you," Draco said softly, his body finally relaxing under Harry. Harry smiled. "I know," he whispered back, bringing his arms around to wrap about Draco's middle.

CHAPTER THIRTY-TWO

Loose Ends
June 3 Harry was sitting in the common room with Ron and Hermione. They were all reading quietly, not really speaking to each other. Harry had come to himself a bit more the past few days, but he still hadn't given up on the books. He didn't read as much around Draco anymore, but he took advantage of when the other boy was doing prefect duties. There were only three books left to look through now, and Harry, Ron, and Hermione each had one. Harry sighed. He was still desperate for an answer, but instead of going absolutely mad, his heart just gave random painful beats. Mostly when he was reading or when he was simply staring at Draco. He didn't show it anymore, but he was still falling apart on the inside. He shook his head of those bad thoughts and turned his attention back to the pages of empty hope in front of him. "Erm, Harry?" asked a voice from above. Harry looked up. It was Jimmy Peakes, and he was holding out a small scroll that Harry immediately recognised. He took the scroll from him quickly and unrolled it. "Thanks, Jimmy," he said, scanning the parchment. "It's from Dumbledore." Harry looked up at Ron and Hermione. "He wants me to go up to his office as soon as I can." Ron's eyes widened. "Does it say just you?" Harry nodded, frowning. "Blimey, whispered Ron, You don't reckon he hasnt found...?" Hermione looked at Harry with wide eyes also. "I suppose I'd better go and see what he wants ..." Harry said slowly, looking at the parchment again. "Keep looking, yeah?" Ron and Hermione nodded hurriedly, both looking anxious. "Go, Harry!" Hermione said shrilly after Harry sat there for another few seconds. Harry frowned again and marked his page before getting to his feet and heading out the portrait hole.

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He walked along the halls and was stopped shortly by Peeves on the seventh floor. Harry tried to jinx him, but Peeves dodged the spell and thankfully went cackling about his way. The corridor turned very silent, it being so close to curfew. He froze, upon hearing a scream and crash, and listened. He turned and headed towards the noise. Around the corner, Professor Trelawney was sprawled on the floor. There were several sherry bottles laying beside her, one broken. Harry sighed and hurried forward to help her to her feet. "What happened, Professor?" he asked. She got to her feet with Harry's help and patted her hair. "You may well ask!" she said shrilly. "I was strolling along, brooding upon certain Dark portents I happen to have glimpsed ..." Harry's attention wandered. As he looked around, he realised where they were. "Were you trying to get in the Room of Requirement?" he asked. "... omens I have vouchsafed what?" She looked suddenly shifty. "Were you trying to get into the Room of Requirement?" he asked again. "I didn't know the students ..." "Not all of them know about it," Harry said quickly, not really wanting to stand there anymore. "It sounded like you might have been hurt. What were you trying to do?" Professor Trelawney drew her shawls around her defensively. "I wished to __ah __ deposit certainum personal items in the Room ..." Harry looked down at the sherry bottles on the floor. "Right. Why couldn't you get in then?" "Oh, I got in all right," she said, glaring at the wall. "There was someone already in there." Harry's head turned to face her very quickly. "Someone was in there?" he asked, frowning. "Yes, someone was in there." Professor Trelawney sniffed. Harry's mind immediately shot to Crabbe and Goyle and his eyes narrowed. "Who was it?" "I have no idea," said Professor Trelawney. "There may have been two. It certainly sounded like two ... I heard two different voices." "What were they saying?" "They weren't really saying anything .... they were ... whooping."

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Harry raised an eyebrow. "Whooping?" "Yes." "Male voices?" "Yes." "Whooping?" "Yes, whooping." Harry frowned again, confused. What were Crabbe and Goyle doing in there that would make them whoop? Perhaps he should've told Draco .... "Did you see what they were doing?" "No, everything went black and I was pushed from the room!" Professor Trelawney said indignantly. A sudden idea came to him. Whatever Crabbe and Goyle were doing was sure to be against school rules. If Professor Trelawney told Dumbledore about it, then he could possibly get back at them for hurting Draco. "I think you should tell Professor Dumbledore," Harry said quickly. "You should tell him that someone pushed you out of the room." You think so? The Professor paused in thought. Harry realised she liked the concept of sharing this little episode. "I'm on my way to meet with him now. We could go together. said Harry. Oh, well, in that case, said Professor Trelawney, smiling as she leaned down, scooped up her sherry bottles and dumped them into the large vase standing in the closest niche. I miss having you in my classes, Harry, she said soulfully, as they set off together. You were never much of a Seer ... but you were a wonderful Object ... Harry did not reply; he had loathed being the Object of Professor Trelawney's continual predictions of doom. I am afraid, she went on, that the nag I'm sorry, the centaur knows nothing of cartomancy. I asked him one Seer to another had he not, too, sensed the distant vibrations of coming catastrophe? But he seemed to find me almost comical. Yes, comical! As her voice rose Harry caught the noticeable scent of alcohol even after she had left the bottles behind. Perhaps the horse has heard people say that I have not inherited my greatgreat-grandmother's gift. Those rumours have been bandied about by the jealous for years. You know what I say to such people, Harry? Would Dumbledore have

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let me teach at this great school, put so much trust in me all these years, had I not proved myself to him? I well remember my first interview with Dumbledore, went on Professor Trelawney, in throaty tones. He was deeply impressed, of course, deeply impressed ... I was staying at the Hog's Head, which I do not advise, incidentally bed bugs, dear boy but funds were low. Dumbledore did me the courtesy of calling upon me in my room at the inn. He questioned me ... I must confess that, at first, I thought he seemed ill-disposed towards Divination ... and I remember I was starting to feel a little odd, I had not eaten much that day ... but then ... This caught his attention, for he knew this was when the Professor had made the Prophecy, about him and Voldemort that had changed his entire life. ... but then we were rudely interrupted by Severus Snape! What? Yes, there was a commotion outside the door and it flew open, and there was that rather uncouth barman standing with Snape, who was waffling about having come the wrong way up the stairs, although I'm afraid that I myself rather thought he had been apprehended eavesdropping on my interview with Dumbledore you see, he himself was seeking a job at the time, and no doubt hoped to pick up tips! Well, after that, you know, Dumbledore seemed much more disposed to give me a job, and I could not help thinking, Harry, that it was because he appreciated the stark contrast between my own unassuming manners and quiet talent, compared to the pushing, thrusting young man who was prepared to listen at keyholes Harry, dear? She peered over her shoulder. Harry had stopped walking and there was a considerable gap between them. Harry? she repeated uncertainly. She looked concerned and frightened. Harry stood frozen as wave after wave of shock beat upon him, pressing out of him everything but the information that he had just learnt. Snape, who had overheard and shared the news of Trelawney's prophecy with Voldemort. He and Pettigrew, who had sent Voldemort after him and his family ... Harry? said Professor Trelawney again. Harry I thought we were going to see the Headmaster together? You stay here, said Harry through numb lips. But, dear ... I was going to tell him how I was assaulted in the Room of You stay here! Harry repeated angrily.

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Alarmed, she followed him with her eyes as he ran around the corner to the gargoyle that stood sentry to Dumbledore's office. He shouted the password and then sped up the staircase. He pounded on the door only to hear Dumbledore's calm "Enter," after he was already in. Fawkes the phoenix looked round, his bright black eyes gleaming with reflected gold from the sunset beyond the window. Dumbledore was standing at the window, looking out at the grounds, a long, black travelling cloak in his arms. Well, Harry, I promised that you could come with me. It took a moment or two for Harry to understand, shock from the information he had just learnt having cast out everything else. Come ... with you ...? Only if you wish it, of course. If I ... Then Harry remembered why he was there. You've found one? You've found a Horcrux? I believe so. Anger, excitement, shock and resentment battled for several moments. It is natural to be afraid, said Dumbledore. I'm not scared! said Harry at once, and it was perfectly true; fear was one emotion he was not feeling at all well, he was not afraid of retrieving a Horcrux at least. His mind shot back to Draco and he thought for a moment about if he should go with Dumbledore at all, but then, Which Horcrux is it? Where is it? I am not sure which it is though I think we can rule out the snake but I believe it to be hidden in a cave on the coast many miles from here, a cave I have been trying to locate for a very long time: the cave in which Tom Riddle once terrorised two children from his orphanage on their annual trip; you remember? Yes, said Harry. How is it protected? I do not know; I have suspicions that may be entirely wrong. Dumbledore hesitated, then said, Harry, I promised you that you could come with me, and I stand by that promise, but it would be very wrong of me not to warn you that this will be exceedingly dangerous. I'm coming, said Harry, almost before Dumbledore had finished speaking. Boiling with anger at Snape, and his anger at the situation Draco was in, his desire to do something desperate and risky had increased tenfold in the last few minutes. This seemed to show on Harry's face, for Dumbledore moved away from

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the window, and looked more closely at Harry, a slight crease between his silver eyebrows. What has happened to you? Nothing, lied Harry promptly there were many things that had happened to him within the past month. What has upset you? I'm not upset. Another lie. Harry, you were never a good Occlumens That word was the fuel that sparked Harry's anger. Snape! he said, very loudly, and Fawkes gave a soft squawk behind them. He didn't know why he didn't say anything to Dumbledore about Draco too, but strangely, something made him feel like he shouldn't, and it was easy to pretend that Snape was the only thing bothering him. It took some of the pain away.Snape's what's happened! He told Voldemort about the prophecy, it was him, he listened outside the door, Trelawney told me! Dumbledore's expression did not change, but Harry thought his face whitened under the bloody tinge cast by the setting sun. For a long moment, Dumbledore said nothing. When did you find out about this? he asked at last. Just now! said Harry, who was refraining from yelling with enormous difficulty. And then, suddenly, he could not stop himself and it was a relief to finally be yelling at someone, even if it had nothing to do with Draco. AND YOU LET HIM TEACH HERE AND HE TOLD VOLDEMORT TO GO AFTER MY MUM AND DAD! Having trouble controlling himself physically, he turned away from a motionless Dumbledore. He was torn between the need to rage and share his feelings that Dumbledore was a fool for trusting Snape. And with his desire to go with him and destroy the Horcrux, he was terrified that if he didn't control his anger, he would be left behind .... Harry, said Dumbledore quietly. Please listen to me. Having difficulty staying still, and still trying not to yell, he paused to look at Dumbledore. Professor Snape made a terrible Don't tell me it was a mistake, sir, he was listening at the door! Please let me finish. Dumbledore waited until Harry had nodded curtly, then went on. Professor Snape made a terrible mistake. He was still in Lord Voldemort's employ on the night he heard the first half of Professor Trelawney's

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prophecy. Naturally, he hastened to tell his master what he had heard, for it concerned his master most deeply. But he did not know he had no possible way of knowing which boy Voldemort would hunt from then onwards, or that the parents he would destroy in his murderous quest were people that Professor Snape knew, that they were your mother and father Harry let out a yell of mirthless laughter. He hated my dad like he hated Sirius! Haven't you noticed, Professor, how the people Snape hates tend to end up dead? You have no idea of the remorse Professor Snape felt when he realised how Lord Voldemort had interpreted the prophecy, Harry. I believe it to be the greatest regret of his life and the reason that he returned But he's a very good Occlumens, isn't he, sir? said Harry, whose voice was shaking with the effort of keeping it steady. And isn't Voldemort convinced that Snape's on his side, even now? Professor ... how can you be sure Snape's on our side? Dumbledore was silent for a time; his expression read as if he were trying to come to a decision. At last, he said, I am sure. I trust Severus Snape completely. Harry tried to take deep breaths to steady himself, though it wasn't very successful. Well, I don't! he said, as loudly as before. He's up to something with Crabbe and Goyle right now, right under your nose, and you still Crabbe and Goyle? Was it not Mr Malfoy you accused of doing something under my nose? I do not remember any mention of Mr Crabbe or Mr Goyle." Dumbledore raised one eyebrow. Harry was silent for a second. "Draco was doing something. I don't know what. He hasn't told me, but Crabbe and Goyle knew about it and so did Snape. Why couldn't they all have picked up where Draco left off?" "We have discussed this, Harry, said Dumbledore, and now he sounded stern again. I have told you my views. You're leaving the school tonight and I'll bet you haven't even considered that Snape and those two might decide to . "To what? asked Dumbledore, his eyebrows raised. What is it that you suspect them of doing, precisely? I ... they're up to something! said Harry, and his hands curled into fists as he said it. Professor Trelawney was just in the Room of Requirement, trying to hide her sherry bottles, and she heard male voices whooping, celebrating! Theyre

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doing something dangerous in there and you're about to just walk out of school without Enough, said Dumbledore calmly. Harry went silent, immediately knowing that he had crossed an unseen line. Do you think that I have once left the school unprotected during my absences this year? I have not. Tonight, when I leave, there will again be additional protection in place. Please do not suggest that I do not take the safety of my students seriously, Harry. I didn't mumbled Harry, a little abashed, but Dumbledore cut across him. I do not wish to discuss the matter any further. Harry swallowed his words, afraid he had gone too far and would be unable to accompany Dumbledore, but Dumbledore went on, Do you wish to come with me tonight? Yes, said Harry at once. Very well, then: listen. Dumbledore drew himself up to his full height. I take you with me on one condition: that you obey any command I might give you at once, and without question. Of course. Be sure to understand me, Harry. I mean that you must follow even such orders as run, hide or go back. Do I have your word? I yes, of course. If I tell you to hide, you will do so? Yes. If I tell you to flee, you will obey? Yes. If I tell you to leave me, and save yourself, you will do as I tell you? I Harry? They looked at each other for a moment. Yes, sir. Very good. Then I wish you to go and fetch your Cloak and meet me in the Entrance Hall in five minutes' time. As Harry left quickly, Dumbledore looked out of the window, the sun a slash of red on the horizon. Harry rushed back along the halls, moving as fast as his feet would allow. His head was swimming with everything he'd just learnt. He

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rushed into the common room and found Ron and Hermione exactly where he had left them, still reading. "Harry?" Hermione said looking up at him, surprised. "I'm fine," Harry said, dashing past his friends to run up to his and Draco's room. He searched around for a bit and found the Marauder's Map and his balled up socks that hid his small bottle of Felix Felicis. He raced back down the stairs at breakneck speed. "I have to be quick," Harry said, panting. "Dumbledore thinks I'm getting my Invisibility Cloak. Listen ..." and he told them where he was going and why. He ignored Hermione's gasps of horror, and Ron's urgent questions. "So you see what this means?" he continued. "Dumbledore's not going to be at the castle tonight. I know there's lots of protection around the place, but I'd feel much better if I knew that you lot were all safe. Crabbe and Goyle might be up to something in that room. I never found out what Draco was doing in there, but they might have been continuing where he left off. They were happy about something, according to Trelawney, and I don't like it. After what they did to Draco, who knows what they're capable of?" He shoved the map into Hermione's hand. "Watch Crabbe and Goyle, and watch Snape too. It's possible he could try something with Dumbledore not here, he might even be in on whatever Crabbe and Goyle are up to he knew what Draco was doing in there. You should round up as many D.A. members as you can as well. The more people watching, the better I'll feel," Harry finished. "Harry " Hermione began. "I don't have time to argue," Harry said quickly. He thrust his socks into Ron's hand. "Erm, what do I need socks for?" Ron asked. "The Felix Felicis is in them. Share it between yourselves and Draco just in case. Tell him I said I'll be back later. Tell him I went somewhere with Dumbledore." He looked at them seriously. "Tell him I love him." Ron winced, but Hermione nodded. "All right, I have to go. I've already spent too much time here," Harry said, getting to his feet. "Don't look like that, Hermione, I'll be fine. I'll be with Dumbledore. Tell Draco what I said, okay?" Hermione frowned and nodded one last time, and then Harry

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{The Cave Chapter 26 in HPB unchanged from the book.}

CHAPTER THIRY-THREE

The Tower
Harry helped Dumbledore to his feet after they were again under the starry sky. Wet and cold, supporting Dumbledore's weight, Harry tried to only think of his destination: Hogsmeade. Steeling himself for the distasteful feeling that accompanied Apparition, he held on to Dumbledore tightly and was gone. He opened his eyes and the scent and feel of the sea were gone. They stood dripping and cold in the middle of High Street in Hogsmeade. Harry thought he saw more Inferi coming at them from the edges of the shops. Blinking, he saw that nothing stirred. All was dark except the street lamps and a few upper windows. Must have been his imagination. We did it, Professor! Harry whispered with difficulty; he suddenly realised that he had a searing stitch in his chest. We did it! We got the Horcrux! As Dumbledore stumbled, Harry thought that his unpractised Apparition had affected him, and he saw his face looking worse than ever in the light from the street lamp. Sir, are you all right? I've been better, said Dumbledore weakly, though the corners of his mouth twitched. "That potion ... was no health drink ..." And to Harry's horror, Dumbledore sank on to the ground. Sir its okay, sir, youre going to be all right, dont worry As Harry thought he must get Dumbledore to the hospital wing, he looked around for help, finding no one. We need to get you up to the school, sir ... Madam Pomfrey ... No, said Dumbledore. It is ... Professor Snape whom I need ... but I do not think ... I can walk very far just yet ... Right sir, listen Im going to knock on a door, find a place you can stay then I can run and get Madam Severus, said Dumbledore clearly. I need Severus ... All right then, Snape but Im going to have to leave you for a moment so I can

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Suddenly, Harry heard the sound of someone running towards them. Someone had seen and knew they needed help. He looked up to see Madam Rosmerta hurrying towards them in a dressing gown and high-heeled bedroom slippers. I saw you Apparate as I was pulling my bedroom curtains! Thank goodness, thank goodness, I couldnt think what to but whats wrong with Albus? She came to a halt, panting, and stared down, wide-eyed, at Dumbledore. Hes hurt, said Harry. Madam Rosmerta, can he come into the Three Broomsticks while I go up to the school and get help for him? You cant go up there alone! Dont you realise havent you seen ? If you help me support him, said Harry, not listening to her, I think we can get him inside What has happened? asked Dumbledore. Rosmerta, whats wrong? "The the Dark Mark, Albus. And she pointed into the sky, in the direction of Hogwarts. Harrys heart plummeted with Madam Rosmertas words. He turned his head slowly to look in the direction she was pointing. There it was, hanging in the sky above the school: the blazing green skull with a serpent tongue, the mark Death Eaters left behind whenever they had entered a building ... wherever they had murdered ... All Harry could think was Draco. Harry could hardly take in what Dumbledore was saying to Madam Rosmerta, his mind was only in one place. When did it appear? asked Dumbledore, and his hand clenched painfully upon Harrys shoulder as he struggled to his feet. Must have been minutes ago, it wasnt there when I put the cat out, but when I got upstairs We need to return to the castle at once, said Dumbledore. Rosmerta, and though he staggered a little, he seemed wholly in command of the situation, we need transport brooms Ive got a couple behind the bar, she said, looking very frightened. Shall I run and fetch ? No, Harry can do it. Harry raised his wand at once. Accio Rosmertas brooms. A second later they heard a loud bang as the front door of the pub burst open; two brooms had shot out into the street and were racing each other to

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Harrys side, where they stopped dead, quivering slightly, at waist height. Rosmerta, please send a message to the Ministry, said Dumbledore, as he mounted the broom nearest him. It might be that nobody within Hogwarts has yet realised anything is wrong ... Harry, put on your Invisibility Cloak. Harry pulled his Cloak out of his pocket and threw it over himself before mounting his broom; Madam Rosmerta was already tottering back towards her pub as Harry and Dumbledore kicked off from the ground and rose up into the air. As they sped towards the castle, Harry glanced sideways at Dumbledore, ready to grab him should he fall, but the sight of the Dark Mark seemed to have acted upon Dumbledore like a stimulant: he was bent low over his broom, his eyes fixed upon the Mark, his long silver hair and beard flying behind him in the night air. And Harry, too, looked ahead at the skull, and fear swelled inside him like a venomous bubble, compressing his lungs, driving all other discomfort from his mind ... As they flew over the dark, twisting lane down which they had walked earlier, Harry heard, over the whistling of the night air in his ears, Dumbledore muttering in some strange language again. He thought he understood why as he felt his broom shudder for a moment when they flew over the boundary wall into the grounds: Dumbledore was undoing the enchantments he himself had set around the castle, so that they could enter at speed. The Dark Mark was glittering directly above the Astronomy Tower, the highest of the castle. Did that mean the death had occurred there? Dumbledore had already crossed the crenellated ramparts and was dismounting; Harry landed next to him seconds later and looked around. The ramparts were deserted. The door to the spiral staircase that led back into the castle was closed. There was no sign of a struggle, of a fight to the death, of a body. What does it mean? Harry asked Dumbledore, looking up at the green skull with its serpents tongue glinting evilly above them. Is it the real Mark? Has someone definitely been Professor? In the dim green glow from the Mark Harry saw Dumbledore clutching at his chest with his blackened hand. Go and wake Severus, said Dumbledore faintly but clearly. "Tell him what has happened and bring him to me. Do nothing else, speak to nobody else and do not remove your Cloak. I shall wait here. Harry hurried over to the door leading to the spiral stair-case, but his hand had only just closed upon the iron ring of the door when he heard running footsteps on the other side. He looked round at Dumbledore, who gestured to him to retreat. Harry backed away, drawing his wand as he did so.

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The door burst open and somebody erupted through it and shouted: Expelliarmus! Harrys body became instantly rigid and immobile, and he felt himself fall back against the tower wall, propped like an unsteady statue, unable to move or speak. He could not understand how it had happened Expelliarmus was not a Freezing Charm Then, by the light of the mark, Harry saw Dumbledores wand flying in an arc over the edge of the ramparts and understood ... Dumbledore had wordlessly immobilised Harry, and the second he had taken to perform the spell had cost him the chance of defending himself. A cloaked figure stepped forward, holding a wand pointed at the Headmaster. Harry was furious at Dumbledore for having done this to him. Was the man a fool? He tried in vain to push himself from the wall, but he couldnt move at all. What Dumbledore said next made his heart stop in his chest. "Good evening, Draco." Draco stepped forward, glancing at the brooms. "Who else is here?" Harry didnt know what was going on. He felt as if his heart picked up again and seemed to be trying to make up for when it had stopped. "A question I might ask you. Or are you acting alone?" Dumbledore said calmly. Draco looked at Dumbledore and shook his head. "No," he said. "There are Death Eaters here in your school tonight." It felt as if Harrys brain had shut down. What was Draco doing? Death Eaters? Why would he know about them? And why would he disarm Dumbledore? Harrys heart was beating madly, and he tried to push against the spell again. "Well, well. Very good indeed. You found a way to let them in, did you?" Dumbledore asked, still completely calm. "My idea at least," Draco said, his voice sounding flat. "Had it figured out before ... well, before." Harry wouldve gone limp at that if he were able to. Oh, God, no. This wasnt happening. Draco had not just said that. "Ingenious," said Dumbledore. "Yet ... forgive me ... where are they now? You seem unsupported." Draco snorted at that. "They met some of your guards. Theyre fighting down below. It probably wont be long ... I was sent on ahead to complete my mission."

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If Harry had been able to keep from going limp at Dracos words from before, he wouldve slid down the wall now. But he stayed upright, staring at the scene in front of him, horrified. "Well, then, you must get on and do it, my dear boy," said Dumbledore softly. Draco stood staring at the man in front of him, wand raised. He shook his head a bit and his hood fell back, white-blond hair gleaming green in the light from the Dark Mark. Harry could feel himself starting to get sick. His stomach was twisting all in knots, and he didnt know what to do. His heart seemed to be trying to get of his chest now, it was beating so madly. Dumbledore looked at the boy before him. "You are not a killer, Draco." "You smug bastard," Draco hissed. "You dont know a damn thing about me. You certainly dont know of what I am capable. Or the things I have done." Harry felt silent tears beginning to burn his eyes. This couldnt be true. Dumbledore didnt even flinch. "I know much more than you think I do, Draco," Dumbledore said. "You almost killed Katie Bell and Ronald Weasley. They were both very feeble attempts to kill me. I know your heart is not in it ... or perhaps it is. Perhaps your heart is exactly the reason you are up here .... But you are not a killer, Draco." "If my heart had been in it, you would have died long before this, old man," Draco spat. A tear spilled over onto Harrys cheek. Dumbledore nodded appreciatively. "I suppose that may be true," he said simply. "If I may ... you say that you birthed the idea of how to get Death Eaters into Hogwarts? Who has helped you? How are they here?" Draco sighed and moved slightly to the side, wand still pointed at Dumbledore, but he could better see the door this way. "I was working on it in the Room of Requirement since the beginning of the year. A broken Vanishing Cabinet that no one has used for years. The one Montague got lost in last year." Harrys eyes would have widened if they could have, but they only continued to fill with frustrated, angry tears. "Aaaah." Dumbledores sigh was half a groan. He closed his eyes for a

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moment. "That was clever ... there is a pair, I take it?" "The others in Borgin and Burkes," Draco said. "They make a passage between them. I realised that they could be used as a way into Hogwarts and around your security if I fixed the broken one in the Room of Requirement." Oh, Merlin, no. That information sent Harrys mind reeling. If Crabbe and Goyle had been ... that had probably been what had happened, but then why was Draco here? Why was Draco acting like this? Harry was so confused and angry and frustrated beyond belief. "Very good. Very clever of you to think of that. The Death Eaters were able to get in right under my nose." "Yes, they did that all right. Here to help me complete my mission." Draco huffed. There was sarcasm in the last line that seemed out of place in the simple statement. Dumbledores eyebrow rose at Dracos slight sarcasm, but he said nothing about it. There were noises coming from down the stairs. "I see what has happened," Dumbledore continued. "Earlier in the year, you were far more desperate to kill me. You must have had times where you thought the cabinet might not work. You tried to send me a cursed necklace that was sure to fall into the wrong hands. You tried to give me poisoned mead that there was only the slightest chance I would drink." "You are such a fool," Draco said with a sigh. "You still have no idea of what really happened. Do you? Did you know it was me?" Harrys heart felt torn in two as the knowledge that the one person he loved more than anyone else in the world had almost killed two of his friends one of them his best friend. And now Harry knew that Draco had a mission to kill Dumbledore and was acting very much like he was going to do it. How could Harry have been such a fool? "Of course I did, Draco," Dumbledore said with a small smile. "I was sure it was you." "Typical," Draco sneered. "Yet, you stood by and did nothing. You let your own people get hurt, your Gryffindors. You let Harry take me to his bed. Sleep in the tower with them." Tears were running freely down Harrys face now. He wanted to kick and scream and ... fuck, he didnt even know what he wanted to do, but he was furious.

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Dumbledores smile did not leave him. "As I said, you are not a killer, Draco. Although I have been having Professor Snape watch over you." "Well," Draco shook his head, "we see how effective that is. Did you think I would trust a double agent with my mission? He serves two masters and he took an oath to my mother. I knew better than to trust him. And you should know better, too." "We must agree to disagree on that, Draco," Dumbledore said lightly. He slipped down the wall a bit. "I trust Severus Snape with all of myself." "With whats left, you mean," Draco said with another sigh. "Its almost a waste to kill you. You look like you wont be around much longer." Harry would have been shaking if he were able. He wanted to hit Draco. That old anger and hatred was back. How could he have let himself be fooled? Ron had been right; hed only been thinking with his prick and now Dumbledore was going to die. There was another loud sound from below. "Perhaps you should get on with it then," Dumbledore said, slipping just a bit more. Draco frowned. "I should." Harry wanted to claw him, and kick him, and hex him into a million pieces. How dare Draco tell him that he loved him? How dare he do all the things that he had done? Dumbledore sighed. "How did you know I would not be in the school?" The blond rolled his eyes. "I didnt. But you were watched. When they saw you had gone for a drink, they made their move." "They? You mean it was not you who decided to spring this trap?" Dumbledore asked, clearly struggling to remain upright. "I already told you I am not alone," Draco said. "They put the Dark Mark over the tower to get you to hurry up here, to see who had been killed. They sent me up here to wait for you." "But am I to take it, then, that no one has been murdered?" Dumbledore asked, and Harrys heart sped up even more. "I believe someone is dead," Draco said, sounding angry. "One of ... your people I dont know who, it was dark. I had to step over the body to get up here. Your Phoenix lot got in the way ...." Harrys heart stopped working for another moment.

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"Yes, they do that," Dumbledore said simply. "There is little time, one way or another... let us discuss your options, Draco." Draco seemed to startle at shouts from below. "Yes, lets discuss my options," Draco sneered. "If I dont kill you, I die. Probably my parents as well. But if I do kill you, Harry will hate me forever. Maybe even kill me himself." What? What was Draco talking about? Dumbledore frowned slightly. "Why else do you think I have not confronted you about any of this until now? I knew that Lord Voldemort would murder you if he thought I suspected anything. But now at last we can speak to each other ... No harm has been done, you have hurt no one. You can come over to the right side. I can help you. I can help your parents. Come over to the right side, Draco. I know how you feel about Harry. You may already be convinced that coming to the right side is what you must do. If you kill me, I am not so sure they will accept you so readily." Draco laughed out loud. "You really dont understand anything. If I die because I didnt do this, it might break him. But if I kill you, then he can hate me. Harry does much better when he is angry. You cannot save me, old man. I am as good as dead already." Harry was confused again. His head was spinning. He tried to struggle against the magic again. "You do not know what you are saying, Draco. The right side can protect you. We can save you from Lord Voldemort. You and your parents. Come over to the right side. Lower your wand." Draco didnt lower his wand. Instead he used his right hand, still holding the wand, to rip open the sleeve on his left arm. The serpent seemed to glow, the green light from above glistening off its scales. "You can protect me from this?" Draco said as he held his arm up, showing Dumbledore the serpents fangs in his arm. Dumbledores eyes seemed to widen slightly. "Is that ...?" He closed his eyes. "Of course it is." He seemed at a loss for a few moments and said nothing. But suddenly footsteps were thundering up the stairs, and a second later Draco was buffeted out of the way as four people in black robes burst through the door on to the ramparts.. Still paralysed, his eyes staring unblinkingly, Harry gazed in terror upon four strangers: it seemed the Death Eaters had won the fight below. His eyes shot to Draco again, and then back to Dumbledore. A lumpy-looking man with an odd lopsided leer gave a wheezy giggle.

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Dumbledore cornered! he said, and he turned to a stocky little woman who looked as though she could be his sister and who was grinning eagerly. Dumbledore wandless, Dumbledore alone! Well done, Draco, well done! Good evening, Amycus, said Dumbledore calmly, as though welcoming the man to a tea party. And youve brought Alecto too ... charming ... The woman gave an angry little titter. "Think your little jokesll help you on your death bed, then? she jeered. Jokes? No, no, these are manners, replied Dumbledore. Do it, said the stranger standing nearest to Harry, a big, rangy man with matted grey hair and whiskers, whose black Death Eaters robes looked uncomfortably tight. He had a voice like none that Harry had ever heard: a rasping bark of a voice. Harry could smell a powerful mixture of dirt, sweat and, unmistakably, of blood coming from him. His filthy hands had long yellowish nails. Is that you, Fenrir? asked Dumbledore. "Thats right, rasped the other. Pleased to see me, Dumbledore? No, I cannot say that I am ... Fenrir Greyback grinned, showing pointed teeth. Blood trickled down his chin and he licked his lips slowly, obscenely. But you know how much I like kids, Dumbledore. Am I to take it that you are attacking even without the full moon now? This is most unusual ... you have developed a taste for human flesh that cannot be satisfied once a month? "Thats right, said Greyback. Shocks you, that, does it, Dumbledore? Frightens you? Well, I cannot pretend it does not disgust me a little, said Dumbledore. And, yes, I am a little shocked that Draco here invited you, of all people, into the school where his friends live ... I didnt, breathed Draco. He was not looking at Greyback; he did not seem to want to even glance at him. Crabbe and Goyle did, they I wouldnt want to miss a trip to Hogwarts, Dumbledore, rasped Greyback. Not when there are throats to be ripped out ... delicious, delicious ... And he raised a yellow fingernail and picked at his front teeth, leering at Dumbledore. I could do you for afters, Dumbledore ... No, said the fourth Death Eater sharply. He had a heavy, brutal-looking face. Weve got orders. Dracos got to do it. Now, Draco, and quickly. Harry looked at Draco, terrified. He was still torn in two and

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found himself wanting to grab Draco and pull him to safety, away from the Death Eaters, and wanting to Stun him so that he couldn't hurt Dumbledore. Dracos eyes narrowed in anger and his face flushed. He shook his head as he stared into Dumbledores face, which was even paler, and rather lower than usual, as he had slid so far down the rampart wall. Hes not long for this world anyway, if you ask me! said the lopsided man, to the accompaniment of his sisters wheezing giggles. Look at him whats happened to you, then, Dumby? Oh, weaker resistance, slower reflexes, Amycus, said Dumbledore. Old age, in short ... one day, perhaps, it will happen to you ... if you are lucky ... Whats that mean, then, whats that mean? yelled the Death Eater, suddenly violent. Always the same, werent yeh, Dumby, talking and doing nothing, nothing, I dont even know why the Dark Lords bothering to kill yeh! Come on, Draco, do it! Harry wanted to cry out, but at that moment, there were renewed sounds of scuffling from below and a voice shouted, Theyve blocked the stairs Reducto! REDUCTO! Harrys heart leapt: so these four had not eliminated all opposition, but merely broken through the fight to the top of the Tower, and, by the sound of it, created a barrier behind them Now, Draco, quickly! said the brutal-faced man angrily. No, Draco said, turning to face them and stepping between Dumbledore and the Death Eaters, blocking their aim. Harry would have whimpered, and he struggled as hard as he possibly could against the Body-Bind, wanting to reach out and pull Draco to him, away from those wands. He wanted to grab him and Dumbledore both and escape on the brooms, to do anything possible to get out of there. Ill do it, snarled Greyback, moving towards Dumbledore with his hands outstretched, his teeth bared. I said no! shouted the brutal-faced man; there was a flash of light and the werewolf was blasted out of the way; he hit the ramparts and staggered, looking furious. Harrys heart was hammering so hard it seemed impossible that nobody could hear him standing there, imprisoned by Dumbledores spell if he could only move, he could aim a curse from under the Cloak Draco, do it, or stand aside so one of us screeched the woman, but at that precise moment the door to the ramparts burst open once more and there stood

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Snape, his wand clutched in his hand as his black eyes swept the scene, from Dumbledore slumped against the wall, to the four Death Eaters, including the enraged werewolf, and Draco. Weve got a problem, Snape, said the lumpy Amycus, whose eyes and wand were fixed alike upon Dumbledore, the boy doesnt seem able But somebody else had spoken Snapes name, quite softly. Severus ... The sound frightened Harry beyond anything he had experienced all evening. For the first time, Dumbledore was pleading. Snape said nothing, but walked forwards and pushed Draco roughly out of the way. The three Death Eaters fell back without a word. Even the werewolf seemed cowed. Snape gazed for a moment at Dumbledore, and there was revulsion and hatred etched in the harsh lines of his face. Severus ... please ..." Snape raised his wand and pointed it directly at Dumbledore. Avada Kedavra! A jet of green light shot from the end of Snape's wand and hit Dumbledore squarely in the chest. Harry's scream of horror never left him; silent and unmoving, he was forced to watch as Dumbledore was blasted into the air: for a split second he seemed to hang suspended beneath the shining skull, and then he fell slowly backwards, like a great rag doll, over the battlements and out of sight.

CHAPTER THIRTY-FOUR

Lost Hope
It had not happened . It could not have happened. "Get out of here quickly," said Snape. Harry watched in frozen horror as Snape grabbed Draco by the scruff of the neck and forced him through the door. The other Death Eaters followed quickly behind. "Draco!" Harry cried out automatically, realising he could move. He threw his Invisibility Cloak off and pushed off from the wall. "Petrificus Totalus!" he yelled, aiming his wand for the last Death Eater leaving. The man fell to the ground and Harry scrambled over him. He sprinted down the dark staircase, moving as fast as he possibly could. He couldn't bring himself to believe that Dumbledore was dead, but he could hardly let himself think about anything at all besides Snape and having to get to him. He finally reached the end of the stairs. All around him was chaos. There were spells firing all over the place, people running around, shouts, and yelling. He looked around, trying to find Snape in the dark, trying to look for Draco. "It's over! Time to go!" Harry heard Snape yell, as he and a struggling Draco disappeared at the far end of the corridor. Harry flung himself forward. He had to get to Draco. It wasn't even about Snape anymore, although, in his mind, getting to Snape would solve everything. He just had to get to Draco. Harry was confused beyond belief, but he couldn't let Snape take Draco wherever it was he was running to. As Harry ran down the corridor, one of the Death Eaters flung themselves at him. It was the werewolf, Fenrir. Harry fell backwards under his weight and felt his hot, disgusting breath at his throat. "Petrificus Totalus!" he yelled again, and he felt Fenrir collapse. He shoved the man off of him with all his might and got quickly to his feet again. He ducked down and continued running, a roaring

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in his ears. He could feel himself slipping and sliding in what could only be blood, but there was no time to stop and look. All around him were people fighting and firing off hexes. Harry could see Ginny in front of him, dodging hexes thrown at her by the Death Eater, Amycus. Harry flung a hex at him and continued forward, not having any time to stop. He saw Professor McGonagall, Tonks and Neville, but he couldn't stop for them either. He couldn't hear anything they were saying to him. He had to get to Snape and Draco. Harry looked around wildly, trying to see a flash of that blond hair. "Snape and Malfoy ...." Harry snapped his head around to look at Neville who was talking to him. "What?!" asked Harry madly. "Snape had Malfoy ... I saw them run past ..." Neville said. Harry took off without another word, feeling like he was going to pass out. He aimed another jinx at a large blond Death Eater who seemed to be causing most of the trouble. The Death Eater howled with pain and stumbled along behind the brother and sister Death Eaters. Where had Snape taken Draco? He'd had such an immense head start. Could he have already reached the cabinet in the Room of Requirement? Harry's stomach dropped at that thought. Perhaps the Order members had thought to secure it. He looked around wildly and spotted a bloody footprint on the floor that showed at least one of the Death Eaters was heading towards the front doors. Perhaps the cabinet was blocked off A Death Eater fired a curse at him as he skidded around the corner. Harry dove out of the way and tried to fire a hex of his own, but he only managed to hit a painting. He spun around quickly and flew down a shortcut, hoping to pass the brother and sister and close in on Snape, who surely must have reached the grounds by now. He finally reached the entrance hall and had to push his way past several confused students standing around. He heard Ernie Macmillan saying something, but he didn't stop to hear it out. The oak front doors had been blasted open and Harry passed them and ran out into the dark grounds. He could see Death Eaters sprinting around and far ahead of

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him. He could see Snape and Draco, who still seemed to be struggling. The cold night air tore at Harry's lungs as he ran after them as fast as he could. There were bursts of light all around him that he ignored. Something suddenly caught him hard in the small of the back and he fell forward, his face hitting the ground and blood pouring out of both nostrils. He knew that the brother and sister had caught up with him. "Impedimenta!" he yelled as he rolled over. His jinx actually hit one of them and he hurriedly got to his feet again, sprinting after Snape. Harry took aim at Snape's back and roared, "Stupefy!" He missed; the spell flew over Snape's head. "Draco!" he yelled hoarsely, desperately, while he took aim at Snape again. Harry roared with anger. "Incarc " he yelled. Snape casually deflected the spell with a flick of his arm, sneering. "Fight back!" Harry screamed, thinking briefly of throwing his wand and simply pouncing on Snape. "Fight back, you cowardly " "Coward, did you call me, Potter?" shouted Snape. "Your father was the coward, never attacking unless it was four to one." Harry glared at Snape and his eyes shot to Draco again. "Don't bring my father up!" he screamed. "That's all you ever want to bring up, you son of a bitch! Give me Draco! What do you need him for! Give him to me!" Harry was desperate, but he tried not to show it. "Draco isn't your concern anymore, Potter. You can't do anything more to him," sneered Snape. Then he yelled to the other Death Eaters, "Now come! It's time to be gone, before the Ministry turns up!" Harry raised his wand again. "Stupe " "Blocked again and again, because you can't shut your mind or mouth, you fool!" In the distance, Harry could see the large Death Eater literally carrying Draco through the gates. The boy was slung over the Death Eater's back, not moving. Harry's breath caught in his throat. He didn't even care about Snape anymore. The idiot could stand and blather on forever for all Harry cared. He took off after Draco; he would wrestle him from the

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man if he had to. There came a screech of, "Crucio!" and Harry hit the ground in excruciating pain, curled in on himself. He writhed, screaming at the top of his lungs. When the pain stopped, he couldn't think anything at all for a moment. "Stop!" Snape was shouting. "Let's go! Your orders are to leave Potter for the Dark Lord." The other Death Eaters obeyed, running towards the gates. "No!" Harry cried out weakly. He struggled to his feet. "No! Draco!" He turned to Snape again. "Give him to me, you coward!" There was a loud BANG and Harry was soaring backwards, hitting the ground hard, his wand flying from his hand. Harry was disoriented for a moment, but then he dove for his wand. "Petrificus Totalus!" and Harry was, once again, unable to move. He could only watch from where he lay as Snape ran for the gates and disappeared from sight. Harry's entire body went numb as he lay there, watching as Draco was taken from him. He couldn't even open his mouth to shout for him, to let him know that he was there. Harry's heart beat madly inside his chest. His eyes filled with frustrated, angry tears, and he could only lie there as Snape and all the others disappeared with Draco. Draco. He tried to struggle like he had upon the tower, but the magic wouldn't let up, and soon, the robe of the last Death Eater had billowed out of sight and Harry felt completely empty. "Yeh all righ', Harry? Yeh all righ'? Speak ter me, Harry ...." Hagrid's face appeared above Harry. "Hagrid!" Harry could hear a familiar voice shouting, but he still didn't move his eyes. "Hagrid! Where's Harry? A couple people said they saw him oh my Harry! Finite!" Harry found he could move again. He looked up and saw Ginny. "Draco," he croaked. Ginny looked confused. "Draco. Snape took Draco." He began to stumble his way over to the gates, knowing that there would be no one there. "Harry, what are you talking about? What's going on? Ron and Hermione told me to patrol with them and then there were Death

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Eaters and " Harry froze at Ginny's words. "Dumbledore," he whispered, and then he took off towards the castle. Harry was shaking uncontrollably as he ran. He saw that many of the castle's windows were lit now. He could imagine, clearly, the scenes inside as people moved from room to room, telling each other that Death Eaters had got in, that the Mark was shining over Hogwarts, that somebody must have been killed The oak front doors stood open ahead of him, light flooding out onto the drive and the lawn. Slowly, uncertainly, dressing-gowned people were creeping down the steps, looking around nervously for some sign of the Death Eaters who had fled into the night. Harry's eyes, however, were fixed upon the ground at the foot of the tallest tower. He imagined that he could see a black, huddled mass lying in the grass there, though he was really too far away to see anything of the sort. Even as he stared wordlessly at the place where he thought Dumbledore's body must lie, however, he saw people beginning to move towards it. Harry finally reached the castle front and he heard Hagrid. He must have followed quickly behind him. "What're they all lookin' at?" said Hagrid, Fang keeping as close as he could to his ankles. "Wha's tha, lyin' on the grass?" Hagrid added sharply, heading now towards the foot of the Astronomy Tower, where a small crowd was congregating. "See it, Harry? Righ at the foot o the tower? Under where the Mark blimey yeh don' think someone got thrown ?" Hagrid fell silent, the thought apparently too horrible to express aloud. Harry had paused, standing now at the back of the crowd gathered around the black mass at the foot of the tower. As his breathing sped up, he walked slowly alongside Hagrid, feeling the aches and pains in his face and his legs where the various hexes of the last half hour had hit him, though in an oddly detached way, as though somebody near him was suffering them. What was real and inescapable was the awful pressing feeling in his chest as he moved closer to what he knew was... He and Hagrid moved, dreamlike, through the murmuring crowd to the very front, where the dumbstruck students and teachers had left a gap. Harry heard Hagrid's moan of pain and shock, but he did not stop; he walked slowly forward until he reached the place where Dumbledore lay, and crouched down beside him. Harry had known there was no hope from the moment that the full Body-Bind Curse Dumbledore had placed upon him lifted, known

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that it could have happened only because its caster was dead; but there was still no preparation for seeing him here, spread-eagled, broken: the greatest wizard Harry had ever, or would ever, meet. Dumbledore's eyes were closed; but for the strange angle of his arms and legs, he might have been sleeping. Harry reached out, straightened the half-moon spectacles upon the crooked nose and wiped a trickle of blood from the mouth with his own sleeve. Then he gazed down at the wise old face and tried to absorb the enormous and incomprehensible truth: that never again would Dumbledore speak to him, never again could he help The crowd murmured behind Harry. After what seemed like a long time he became aware that he was kneeling upon something hard and looked down. The locket they had managed to steal so many hours before had fallen out of Dumbledore's pocket. It had opened, perhaps due to the force with which it had hit the ground. And although he could not feel more shock or horror or sadness than he felt already, Harry knew, as he picked it up, that there was something wrong . He turned the locket over in his hands. This was neither as large as the locket he remembered seeing in the Pensieve, nor were there any markings upon it, no sign of the ornate S that was supposed to be Slytherin's mark. Moreover, there was nothing inside but for a scrap of folded parchment wedged tightly into the place where a portrait should have been. Automatically, without really thinking about what he was doing, Harry pulled out the fragment of parchment, opened it, and read by the light of the many wands that had now been lit behind him: To the Dark Lord, I know I will be dead long before you read this but I want you to know that it was I who discovered your secret. I have stolen the real Horcrux and intend to destroy it as soon as I can. I face death in the hope that when you meet your match you will be mortal once more. R.A.B. Harry neither knew nor cared what the message meant. This was not a Horcrux. Dumbledore had weakened himself by drinking that terrible potion for nothing. Harry had let Draco be captured and taken away from him. He felt numb. He crumpled the parchment in his hand and his eyes burned with tears as behind him Fang began to howl. C 'mere, Harry ...." "No."

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"Yeh can' stay here, Harry. ... come on, now ." "No." He did not want to leave Dumbledore's side, he did not want to move anywhere. He felt that things would be worse if he moved. He would be forced to take in what he had let happen. He would have to take in that Dumbledore was dead ... that Draco was gone. Hagrid's hand on his shoulder was trembling. Then another voice said, "Harry, come on." A much smaller and warmer hand had enclosed his and was pulling him upward. He obeyed its pressure without really thinking about it. Only as he walked blindly back through the crowd did he realise, from a trace of flowery scent on the air, that it was Ginny who was leading him back into the castle. Incomprehensible voices battered him, sobs and shouts and wails stabbed the night, but Harry and Ginny walked on, back up the steps into the entrance hall: faces swam on the edges of Harry's vision, people were peering at him, whispering, wondering, and Gryffindor rubies glistened on the floor like drops of blood as they made their way toward the marble staircase. "We're going to the hospital wing," said Ginny. "I'm not hurt," said Harry, voice dead sounding. "It's McGonagall's orders," said Ginny. "Everyone's up there, Ron and Hermione and Lupin and everyone " Fear stirred in Harry's chest again: He had forgotten the inert figures he had left behind. "Ginny, who else is dead?" "Don't worry, none of us." "But the Dark Mark - I heard that there was a body ...." His steps faltered as he remembered who he had heard that from. Draco. He nearly collapsed. Ginny grasped his arm, looking at him very worriedly. "It's Bill, but its all right, he's alive." There was something in her voice, however, that Harry knew boded ill. "Are you sure?" His voice was nearly a whisper. "Of course I'm sure he's a a bit of a mess, that's all. Greyback attacked him. Madam Pomfrey says he won't won't look the same anymore " Ginny's voice trembled a little. "We don't really know what the after-effects will be I mean, Greyback being a werewolf, but not transformed at the time." "But the others There were other bodies on the ground " He could still only whisper.

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"Nevilles in the hospital wing, but Madam Pomfrey thinks hell make a full recovery, and Professor Flitwick was knocked out, but hes all right, just a bit shaky. He insisted on going off to look after the Ravenclaws. And a Death Eater's dead, he got hit by a Killing Curse that huge blond one was firing off everywhere Harry, if we hadn't had your Felix potion, I think we'd all have been killed, but everything seemed to just miss us " They had reached the hospital wing. Pushing open the doors, Harry saw Neville lying, apparently asleep, in a bed near the door. Ron, Hermione, Luna, Tonks, and Lupin were gathered around another bed near the far end of the ward. At the sound of the doors opening, they all looked up. Hermione ran to Harry and hugged him; Lupin moved forwards too, looking anxious. "Are you all right, Harry?" "I'm fine ... how's Bill?" Harry asked, but he felt dead. He wondered if he was going to go mad, wondered where this alarming calm was coming from. Nobody answered. Harry looked over Hermione's shoulder and saw an unrecognisable face lying on Bill's pillow, so badly slashed and ripped that he looked grotesque. Madam Pomfrey was dabbing at his wounds with some harshsmelling green ointment. "Can't you fix them with a charm or something?" he asked the matron. "No charm will work on these," said Madam Pomfrey. "I've tried everything I know, but there is no cure for werewolf bites." "But he wasn't bitten at the full moon," said Ron, who was gazing down into his brother's face as though he could somehow force him to mend just by staring. "Greyback hadn't transformed, so surely Bill won't be a a real ?" : He looked uncertainly at Lupin. "No, I don't think that Bill will be a true werewolf," said Lupin, "but that does not mean that there won't be some contamination. Those are cursed wounds. They are unlikely ever to heal fully, and and Bill might have some wolfish characteristics from now on." "Dumbledore might know something that'd work, though," Ron said. "Where is he? Bill fought those maniacs on Dumbledore's orders, Dumbledore owes him, he can't leave him in this state " "Ron Dumbledores dead," said Ginny. "No!" Lupin looked wildly from Ginny to Harry, as though hoping the latter might contradict her, but when Harry did not, Lupin collapsed into a chair beside Bill's bed, his hands over his face. Harry had never seen Lupin lose control before; he felt as though he was intruding upon something private, indecent; he

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turned away and caught Ron's eye instead, exchanging in silence a look that confirmed what Ginny had said. "How did he die?" whispered Tonks. "How did it happen?" "Snape killed him," said Harry and his voice shook as tears threatened his eyes. "I was there, I saw it. We arrived back on the Astronomy Tower because that's where the Mark was Dumbledore was ill, he was weak, but I think he realised it was a trap when we heard footsteps running up the stairs. He immobilised me, I couldn't do anything, I was under the Invisibility Cloak and then... Draco came through the door and Disarmed him " Harry felt like he was slipping sideways, and his voice cracked. Ginny grasped his arm again to keep him upright. Hermione clapped her hands to her mouth and Ron looked shocked. "Draco?" he asked Luna's mouth trembled. Harry simply continued. " more Death Eaters arrived and then Snape and Snape did it. The Avada Kedavra." Harry couldn't go on. Madam Pomfrey burst into tears. Nobody paid her any attention except Ginny, who whispered, "Shh! Listen!" Gulping, Madam Pomfrey pressed her fingers to her mouth, her eyes wide. Somewhere out in the darkness, a phoenix was singing in a way Harry had never heard before: a stricken lament of terrible beauty. And Harry felt, as he had felt about phoenix song before, that the music was inside him, not without: it was his own grief turned magically to song that echoed across the grounds and through the castle windows. How long they all stood there, listening, he did not know, nor why it seemed to ease their pain a little to listen to the sound of their mourning, but it felt like a long time later that the hospital door opened again and Professor McGonagall entered the ward. Like all the rest, she bore marks of the recent battle: there were grazes on her face and her robes were ripped. "Molly and Arthur are on their way," she said, and the spell of the music was broken: everyone roused themselves as though coming out of trances, turning again to look at Bill, or else to rub their own eyes, shake their heads. "Harry, what happened? According to Hagrid you were with Professor Dumbledore when he when it happened. He says Professor Snape was involved in some " "Snape killed Dumbledore," said Harry. She stared at him for a moment, then swayed alarmingly; Madam Pomfrey, who seemed to have pulled herself together, ran forward, conjuring a chair from thin air, which she pushed under McGonagall.

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"Snape," repeated McGonagall faintly, falling into the chair. "We all wondered but he trusted always Snape ... I can't believe it ...." "Snape was a highly accomplished Occlumens," said Lupin, his voice uncharacteristically harsh. "We always knew that." "But Dumbledore swore he was on our side!" whispered Tonks. "I always thought Dumbledore must know something about Snape that we didn't ...." "He always hinted that he had an ironclad reason for trusting Snape," muttered Professor McGonagall, now dabbing at the corners of her leaking eyes with a tartan-edged handkerchief. "I mean with Snapes history ... of course people were bound to wonder but Dumbledore told me explicitly that Snape's repentance was absolutely genuine wouldn't hear a word against him!" "I'd love to know what Snape told him to convince him," said Tonks. "I know," said Harry, and they all turned to look at him. "Snape passed Voldemort the information that made Voldemort hunt down my mum and dad. Then Snape told Dumbledore he hadn't realised what he was doing, he was really sorry he'd done it, sorry that they were dead." They all stared at him. "And Dumbledore believed that?" said Lupin incredulously. "Dumbledore believed Snape was sorry James was dead? Snape hated James ." "And he didn't think my mother was worth a damn either," said Harry, feeling dead and detached again. "because she was Muggle-born ... 'Mudblood, he called her ...." Nobody asked how Harry knew this. All of them seemed to be lost in horrified shock, trying to digest the monstrous truth of what had happened. "This is all my fault," said Professor McGonagall suddenly. She looked disoriented, twisting her wet handkerchief in her hands. "My fault. I sent Filius to fetch Snape tonight, I actually sent for him to come and help us! If I hadn't alerted Snape to what was going on, he might never have joined forces with the Death Eaters. I don't think he knew they were there before Filius told him, I don't think he knew they were coming." "It isn't your fault, Minerva," said Lupin firmly. "We all wanted more help, we were glad to think Snape was on his way ." "So when he arrived at the fight, he joined in on the Death Eaters' side?" asked Harry, who wanted every detail of Snape's duplicity and infamy, feverishly collecting more reasons to hate him, to swear vengeance. "I don't know exactly how it happened," said Professor McGonagall distractedly. "It's all so confusing Dumbledore had told us that he would be leaving the school for a few hours and that we were to patrol the corridors just in

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case Remus, Bill and Nymphadora were to join us ... and so we patrolled. All seemed quiet. Every secret passageway out of the school was covered. We knew nobody could fly in. There were powerful enchantments on every entrance into the castle. I still don't know how the Death Eaters can possibly have entered ." "I do," said Harry, and he explained, briefly, about the pair of Vanishing Cabinets and the magical pathway they formed. "So they got in through the Room of Requirement." Almost against his will he glanced from Ron to Hermione, both of whom looked devastated. "I messed up, Harry," said Ron bleakly. "We did like you told us: We checked the Marauder's Map and we couldn't see Crabbe and Goyle on it, so we thought they must be in the Room of Requirement, so me, Ginny and Neville went to keep watch on it ... but they got past us." "They came out of the room about an hour after we started keeping watch," said Ginny. "They were on their own. They must have been checking whether the coast was clear to let the Death Eaters out, because the moment they saw us they threw something into the air and it all went pitch-black " " Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder," said Ron bitterly. "Fred and George's. I'm going to be having a word with them about who they let buy their products." "We tried everything Lumos, Incendio," said Ginny. "Nothing would penetrate the darkness; all we could do was grope our way out of the corridor again, and meanwhile we could hear people rushing past us. I don't know how they could see, but we didn't dare use any curses or anything in case we hit each other, and by the time we'd reached a corridor that was light, they'd gone." "Luckily," said Lupin hoarsely, "Ron, Ginny and Neville ran into us almost immediately and told us what had happened. We found the Death Eaters minutes later, heading in the direction of the Astronomy Tower. Crabbe and Goyle obviously hadn't expected more people to be on the watch; they seemed to have exhausted their supply of Darkness Powder, at any rate. A fight broke out, they scattered and we gave chase. One of them, Gibbon, broke away and headed up the Tower stairs " "To set off the Mark?" asked Harry, voice quiet again. "He must have done, yes, they must have arranged that before they left the Room of Requirement," said Lupin. "But I don't think Gibbon liked the idea of waiting up there alone for Dumbledore, because he came running back downstairs to rejoin the fight and was hit by a Killing Curse that just missed me." "So if Ron was watching the Room of Requirement with Ginny and

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Neville," said Harry, turning to Hermione, "were you ?" "Outside Snape's office, yes," whispered Hermione, her eyes sparkling with tears, "with Luna. We hung around for ages outside it and nothing happened we didn't know what was going on upstairs, Ron had taken the Marauders Map it was nearly midnight when Professor Flitwick came sprinting down into the dungeons. He was shouting about Death Eaters in the castle, I don't think he really registered that Luna and I were there at all, he just burst his way into Snape's office and we heard him saying that Snape had to go back with him and help and then we heard a loud thump and Snape came hurtling out of his room and he saw us and and "What?" Harry urged her. "I was so stupid, Harry!" said Hermione in a high-pitched whisper. "He said Professor Flitwick had collapsed and that we should go and take care of him while he while he went to help fight the Death Eaters " She covered her face in shame and continued to talk into her fingers, so that her voice was muffled. "We went into his office to see if we could help Professor Flitwick and found him unconscious on the floor and, oh, it's so obvious now, Snape must have Stupefied Flitwick, but we didn't realise, Harry, we didn't realise, we just let Snape go!" "It's not your fault," said Lupin firmly. "Hermione, had you not obeyed Snape and got out of the way, he probably would have killed you and Luna." "So then he came upstairs," said Harry, who in his mind's eye was watching Snape running up the marble staircase, his black robes billowing behind him as ever, pulling his wand from under his cloak as he ascended, "and he found the place where you were all fighting ..." "We were in trouble, we were losing," said Tonks in a low voice. "Gibbon was down, but the rest of the Death Eaters seemed ready to fight to the death. Neville had been hurt, Bill had been savaged by Greyback ... it was all dark curses flying everywhere I saw the Malfoy boy, and heard something about him finishing some sort of mission and they pushed him up the stairs then more of them ran after him, but one of them blocked the stairs behind them with some kind of curse Neville ran at it and got thrown up into the air " "None of us could break through," said Ron, "and that massive Death Eater was still firing off jinxes all over the place, they were bouncing off the walls and barely missing us " "And then Snape was there," said Tonks, "and then he wasn't " "I saw him running toward us, but that huge Death Eater's jinx just missed

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me right afterwards and I ducked and lost track of things," said Ginny. "I saw him run straight through the cursed barrier as though it wasn't there," said Lupin. "I tried to follow him, but was thrown back just like Neville ..." "He must have known a spell we didn't," whispered McGonagall. "After all he was the Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher ... I just assumed that he was in a hurry to chase after the Death Eaters who'd escaped up to the Tower ...." "He was," said Harry savagely, a sudden burst of anger flaring up inside him, but emotion hurt him. Even hatred for Snape made him hurt for Draco. "but to help them, not to stop them." "The big Death Eater had just fired off a hex that caused half the ceiling to fall in, and also broke the curse blocking the stairs," said Lupin. "We all ran forward those of us who were still standing anyway and then Snape and the boy emerged out of the dust obviously, none of us attacked them " "We just let them pass," said Tonks in a hollow voice, "we thought they were being chased by the Death Eaters and next thing, the other Death Eaters and Greyback were back and we were fighting again I thought I heard Snape shout something, but I don't know what " "He shouted, 'It's over,'" said Harry quietly, horrible emotion nearly closing his throat. "He'd done what he'd meant to do." He was silent, but then turned to Ron. "Where was Draco on the map? Did you see him? Did you ever get a chance to speak to him at all?" Ron winced. "He never came back up. We weren't looking at the map after we figured Crabbe and Goyle were in the Room of Requirement. We never saw him until the battle in the corridor next to the steps." "What happened to him, Harry? Where is he?" asked Hermione, eyes shining with tears. Most of the others were silent and staring. Harry began shaking. "I thought it was obvious before," he said, voice quiet to keep himself from losing it completely. "Snape took him. Draco's mission from Voldemort was to kill Dumbledore, but he couldn't do it." His voice cracked again. "He stepped between the Death Eaters and Dumbledore." He bowed his head, shaking even worse now. "Snape killed Dumbledore and then took Draco. He took him." "Oh, Harry, I " Hermione began. "Nothing you say will help," Harry said, voice thick and angry now.

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They all fell silent. Fawkes's lament was still echoing over the dark grounds outside. The doors of the hospital wing burst open, making them all jump: Mr and Mrs Weasley were striding up the ward, Fleur just behind them, her beautiful face terrified. "Molly Arthur " said Professor McGonagall, jumping up and hurrying to greet them. "I am so sorry " "Bill," whispered Mrs Weasley, darting past Professor McGonagall as she caught sight of Bill's mangled face. "Oh, Bill!" Lupin and Tonks had got up hastily and retreated so that Mr and Mrs Weasley could get nearer to the bed. Mrs Weasley bent over her son and pressed her lips to his bloody forehead. "You said Greyback attacked him?" Mr Weasley asked Professor McGonagall distractedly. "But he hadn't transformed? So what does that mean? What will happen to Bill?" "We don't yet know," said Professor McGonagall, looking helplessly at Lupin. "There will probably be some contamination, Arthur," said Lupin. "It is an odd case, possibly unique we don't know what his behaviour might be like when he wakes up ." Mrs Weasley took the nasty-smelling ointment from Madam Pomfrey and began dabbing at Bill's wounds. "And Dumbledore ..." said Mr Weasley. "Minerva, is it true Is he really?" As Professor McGonagall nodded, Harry felt Ginny move beside him and looked at her. Her slightly narrowed eyes were fixed upon Fleur, who was gazing down at Bill with a frozen expression on her face. "Dumbledore gone," whispered Mr Weasley, but Mrs Weasley had eyes only for her eldest son; she began to sob, tears falling onto Bill's mutilated face. "Of course, it doesn't matter how he looks it's not r really important ... but he was a very handsome little b-boy always very handsome and he was g-going to be married!" "And what do you mean by zat?" said Fleur suddenly and loudly. "What do you mean, 'e was going to be married?'" Mrs Weasley raised her tear-stained face, looking startled. "Well only that " "You theenk Bill will not wish to marry me anymore?" demanded Fleur. "You theenk, because of these bites, he will not love me?"

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"No, that's not what I " "Because 'e will!" said Fleur, drawing herself up to her full height and throwing back her long mane of silver hair. "It would take more zan a werewolf to stop Bill loving me!" "Well, yes, I'm sure," said Mrs Weasley, "but I thought perhaps given how how he " "You thought I would not weesh to marry him? Or per'aps, you 'oped?" said Fleur, her nostrils flaring. "What do I care how e looks? I am good-looking enough for both of us, I theenk! All these scars show is zat my husband is brave! And I shall do zat!" she added fiercely, pushing Mrs Weasley aside and snatching the ointment from her. Mrs Weasley fell back against her husband and watched Fleur mopping up Bill's wounds with a most curious expression upon her face. Nobody said anything. "Our Great-Auntie Muriel," said Mrs Weasley after a long pause, "has a very beautiful tiara goblin-made which I am sure I could persuade her to lend you for the wedding. She is very fond of Bill, you know, and it would look lovely with your hair." "Thank you," said Fleur stiffly. "I am sure zat will be lovely." And then Harry did not quite see how it happened both women were crying and hugging each other. Completely bewildered, wondering whether the world had gone mad, he turned around: Ron looked as stunned as he felt and Ginny and Hermione were exchanging startled looks. "You see!" said a strained voice. Tonks was glaring at Lupin. "She still wants to marry him, even though he's been bitten! She doesn't care! "It's different," said Lupin, barely moving his lips and looking suddenly tense. "Bill will not be a full werewolf. The cases are completely " "But I don't care either, I don't care!" said Tonks, seizing the front of Lupin's robes and shaking them. "I've told you a million times " And the meaning of Tonks's Patronus and her mouse-coloured hair, and the reason she had come running to find Dumbledore when she had heard a rumour someone had been attacked by Greyback, all suddenly became clear to Harry; it had not been Sirius that Tonks had fallen in love with after all. His heart hurt and he thought of Draco. "And I've told you a million times," said Lupin, refusing to meet her eyes, staring at the floor, "that I am too old for you, too poor too dangerous ...." "I've said all along you're taking a ridiculous line on this, Remus," said Mrs Weasley over Fleur's shoulder as she patted her on the back.

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"I am not being ridiculous," said Lupin steadily. "Tonks deserves somebody young and whole." "But she wants you," said Mr Weasley, with a small smile. "And after all, Remus, young and whole men do not necessarily remain so." He gestured sadly at his son, lying between them. "This is ... not the moment to discuss it," said Lupin, avoiding everybody's eyes as he looked around distractedly. "Dumbledore is dead ...." Harry took a shuddering breath, feeling like he was going to need to get out of here very soon. No one even cared about Draco. Not a single person in here and he could not bear to listen to people argue about being together. "Dumbledore would have been happier than anybody to think that there was a little more love in the world," said Professor McGonagall curtly, just as the hospital doors opened again and Hagrid walked in. After McGonagall's comment, Harry got to his feet. He couldn't even bear to hear that word love. He was trembling and lost, and he hadn't the first clue about what he should do. He made to walk out, passing Hagrid and ignoring everyone calling out to him, simply speeding up until he couldn't hear their voices. It was a minute before he heard hurried footsteps behind him, and he looked over his shoulder to see Lupin, Tonks, Ron and Hermione attempting to follow him. He sped up until he was running, not even knowing where he was going. His feet seemed to be carrying him off on their own. He finally slowed down when he was sure he had lost them. What now? He stuffed his hands in his pockets and simply stared ahead, just walking. He had half a mind to set off on his own to try and look for Draco, to try and do something. But then what about everything that had just happened? How stupid would it be to go off alone without any clue where to look? Very stupid. And he knew that he couldn't do that to Dumbledore. He knew he wasn't going to be able to sleep, and he couldn't bring himself to even go up to Gryffindor Tower. He wandered around the castle for a good long time, not even really thinking anything at all anymore. The place was in ruins; there was blood all over and pieces of the walls and ceiling on the floor. He heard voices becoming louder the closer he got to rounding a corner. He finally came to the end of the corridor he was in, what

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floor was it? He didn't know. He saw Ministry Aurors and some Order members standing a bit away in a small crowd. They didn't notice Harry. They were all talking amongst themselves seriously and in hushed tones. Harry looked around and saw that he was standing in front of the Room of Requirement. He stared at the stretch of blank wall, realising that the Aurors and Order members were guarding it. He finally stepped out of the bit of shadow he had been standing in and moved very quickly in front of the stretch of wall three times. One of the Aurors looked up. "Hey! You can't go in there!" she said. "Harry!" said another, but Harry was already opening the door and going quickly inside. He wasn't surprised to find himself in the familiar sitting room. The people outside began pounding on the door, but when Harry wished it would stop, it did. He sat down on the sofa and stared blankly at nothing. The room couldn't give him what he required right then.

CHAPTER THIRTY-FIVE

For Nothing
Earlier that evening, while Harry had been talking with Dumbledore, Draco had been on his way back from the Slytherin dorms. When Crabbe and Goyle caught up with him, he was ready for it this time. What he had not been prepared for was that they were not alone. He had managed to take out Goyle before they got him. Then he lay on his back in a full Body-Bind with a group of Death Eaters looking down on him. Weve come to help you with your mission, Draco, Amycus had leered. We heard you've been a bit confused about your priorities. Yeah, were here to set you straight again. Alecto laughed at her own joke. Crabbe had Dracos wand and had been smiling down at him too. We dont know what Potter did to you, but for the sake of your family, you're being given a last chance, Malfoy. They had taken him to meet the others then, explaining the plan on the way. They had almost reached the tower when the fight had broken out with Harrys friends. Draco had been pushed and dragged to the door of the tower and shoved through it. He had reacted on instinct when he saw Dumbledore, disarming him before he had had a chance to even realise what he was doing. But he hadnt been able to do it. Snape had. The only thing that had made the shock and anger bearable was that Harry had been missing from the fight. Until they left the tower and Draco suddenly realised that he was behind them. Snape was dragging Draco away while Harry was screaming his name. That was when Draco had realised that Harry had witnessed the scene on the tower. The second broom had made sense. Draco hadnt thought it could be worse, but it was. Harry had heard it all, seen it all. Dumbledore was dead, Snape a murderer, others hurt or dead,

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and worst of all, Harry betrayed all for nothing. Draco sat staring at the serpent coiled around his arm, fangs still sunk into his flesh. Snape had been wrong. It mattered who killed Dumbledore. Draco had failed his mission and would be punished for it. Snape was pacing the small room in a fit of anger over the turn of events. His godfather had been certain he had saved Draco from the death sentence. Draco almost laughed. He still had a way to cheat the Dark Lord of his punishment. He and Harry had never shown anyone the contents of their binding promises. Snape did not know that Draco would be dead by morning. And that suited Draco just fine. Draco could feel his body growing cold as the sun began to rise. He wondered if this was how a vampire felt. Tired, he lay down on the cot he sat on and feigned sleep. I love you, Harry, he whispered. Harry had dozed off on the couch. "Potter," he heard. "Wake up," the voice snapped. When he opened his eyes, Snape was standing over him, wand pointed at this throat. Harry took a sharp breath and couldn't even think of anything to say, he was so shocked. "Don't move," Snape warned, backing up, holding Harry's wand in his other hand. Snape stood at the other end of the couch, glowering at Harry. "You never did tell the Headmaster the contents of the binding promise, did you?" Harry was glaring at Snape now, but that had definitely caught his attention. "Where's Draco?" he asked angrily. "What did you do to him, Potter? Make it so that if he ran from you, he would die?" Snape sneered. Harry began shaking. "Where is he?" he asked again, voice full of suppressed rage. Snape shook his head, glancing around the room. "This place isn't your style, Potter, though it is Draco's. Is this where you tricked him into it?" Harry's chest was heaving now with the effort of remaining in his seat. "You fucking bastard!" he yelled. "Tell me where the fuck he is!" "Tell me what you did to him or youll never see him again," Snape threatened.

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Harry stared at Snape for a moment. "We made the binding promise without even knowing we were doing it," he said. "He needs me to live, my magic or something. I would never have done it if I'd known what it would do to him. Don't you dare imply that I would hurt him willfully." Snape's eyes narrowed and then his wand flicked. Suddenly, Harry was thrown back to the couch he found himself bringing up the image of himself and Draco during the binding. He could feel Snape grabbing the images and words from his mind. Harry gasped and tried to push Snape out, but succeeded only when he had seen everything. "You fucking bastard!" he screamed. "Who the fuck do you think you are?" Snape had gone paler than usual, his eyes wide at what he had witnessed. "Did you forget that I am his godfather?" he hissed. "I don't give a damn who you are!" Harry screamed. "No one has the right to see that!" Snape stared at Harry for another moment. "Do you still want to save him?" he asked. "Must you ask?" Harry hissed. "Enough to go willingly with me to where he is now?" Snape asked, his face hard. Harry glared at Snape. He knew this was his only chance at saving Draco, but Snape had killed Dumbledore. Harry closed his eyes at that thought. What if it was a trap? "How do I know you'll take me to him?" Harry asked, his mind already halfway made up to go. "I found you sleeping and unprotected," Snape sneered. "Might I point out that if I had intended to harm you, the deed would have been done by now." "Fine. Yes, I'll go," Harry said, his heart beating madly. "You will work with me to save Draco, and we call a truce until that is accomplished. Agreed?" Snape asked. "Yes!" Harry hissed. "Take me to him, now!" He shifted a bit under Snape's wand. Snape nodded. He gestured behind Harry to the cabinet against the back wall. "We go through there and then Ill Apparate us to where he is," he said. "After you, Mr Potter." Harry leapt from the couch and ran over to the cabinet. Without any hesitation at all, he stepped into it.

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Snape followed Harry into the cabinet and into the back room at Borgin and Burkes. Then he grabbed the boys arm and took him on a Side-Along to the bolthole. It was not much more than a large stone walled room with several cots, some food provisions and potions supplies. There was only minimal furniture in the room. There were no windows or doors visible. Harry's breath caught as he set eyes on Draco lying on one of the cots. He ran over to him and fell to his knees. He touched him everywhere he could. He was cold and unconscious, but he was there and alive. "Draco, I'm sorry," he sobbed into the other boy's black robes. He kissed his face over and over again. He'd never felt more relieved in his life. Snape moved to the furthest point in the room. He sat in one of he chairs, still holding his own wand. He had put Harry's wand inside his own robes. Harry pulled himself together enough to glance over his shoulder at Snape. He didn't let go of Draco. "I think you know what I need to do," he said angrily. Snape nodded, but said nothing. Harry's eyes widened before they narrowed and his nostrils flared. "Get. Out," he said, accentuating each word with a pause. "No," Snape said. "I am more than willing to refrain from watching. But I must warn you that if anything happens to me, the two of you would die in this place. The wards are keyed to me, and won't allow anyone else to Apparate in or out." Harry gripped Draco's robes in his hands so tightly, his fingers almost pushed through. Breathing heavily, Harry got to his feet and rolled Draco so that he was lying on his stomach. Harry squeezed his eyes shut and faced away from Snape. "Is there anything I can use for lubricant here?" he asked through gritted teeth. "One moment," Snape said, and walked over to the potions supplies. He took a vial from the shelves and brought it to Harry, handing it to him without comment before walking back to his seat. Harry could hear the sound of the chair being turned around and the man re-seating himself. Harry wordlessly reached underneath Draco to undo his trousers; he left his robes on him. Then he began undoing his own, leaving his robes on as well. He was red with fury, and he prepared Draco very

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quickly. His erection was completely due to him being able to get one whenever he wanted; there was nothing stimulating about this. He shut his eyes as tightly as he could and pulled Draco's hips up to thrust quickly into him, not making a sound. Draco was further gone than Harry had ever seen him before. He was cold and still, not even reacting to his entrance. Harry kept his eyes closed and pulled out again. "Come on, Draco," he whispered very quietly as he pushed back in. Draco was so cold he was making Harry cold. Several thrusts later, Draco gasped as if in pain, a small shudder running through his body. Harry let out a quiet sigh of relief. He thrust a little harder, a little faster. He was trying to do anything to make Draco wake up, to make him come back so that Harry could hug him and kiss him properly. "No, please stop," Draco gasped in a dry voice. Harry stilled immediately. He pulled out. "Draco?" he asked hurriedly, leaning over him. "Let me go," Draco whispered. Harry's brows pulled together in a frown. He moved back behind Draco and positioned himself again. "No," he whispered, and then he pushed in again. "No," Draco said louder, weak, but trying to move away from Harry. Harry felt his eyes fill with tears. "No, Draco," he said, holding him in place. "I can't." Feeling was returning to his body, and Draco fought back. "No, stop, please," Harry sobbed, trying to hold Draco still, thrusting weakly into him. "Please." Draco collapsed against the cot, unmoving but no longer struggling. He closed his eyes, tears already running down his face. Harry sobbed uncontrollably. He couldn't come. He thrust for a few more minutes and hoped it would be enough. He pulled out and fell to his knees again and crawled over to Draco, clutching at his robes tightly. Draco felt Harry lay beside him. He could breathe and feel his body, but he still felt cold and empty. He opened his eyes. Harry pulled Draco to him and hugged him as tightly as he could. "I'm sorry," he sobbed. "I'm sorry, Draco."

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"Why?" Draco whispered. "Why are you here?" Harry could hardly speak. "I love you," he said simply. Draco frowned. "I betrayed you." "No, you didn't," Harry wept. "I saw everything; I heard everything." He brought one hand up to grasp Draco's hair. "You didn't do anything wrong." Draco tried to shake his head, but it just came out as a wince. "Did a lot wrong," he said. "And still going to die." "No, you're not," Harry said firmly. "I won't let you." "Check my arm," Draco sighed. Harry frowned. He pulled back to look at Draco's arm and saw the familiar sight of the serpent. "But why why if ...?" he asked, horrified. "I didn't do it." Draco wanted to laugh, but only had energy to sigh. "Had to be me." Harry stared at Draco, eyes wide and tears still falling. "No," he whispered, his head falling back down onto the cot. "Yes," Draco whispered. Harry just continued to stare at Draco and then his eyes fell shut, still leaking tears. "No," he pleaded. "No, no, please, no." Draco struggled to move. He managed to lean in and gently kiss Harry's lips. Harry couldn't even kiss back. He didn't know what to do. He had been so sure that he had found Draco and that everything was going to be all right. He should have known better. Nothing came easy for Harry Potter. Draco settled into the other boy's arms and closed his eyes. "I love you," he whispered. Harry wanted so desperately to tell Draco that he loved him too, but right at that moment everything came crashing down on him, everything. Dumbledore was dead, people were hurt, he didn't have a Horcrux, and Draco was still going to die. All he could do was hold Draco to him and cry. Draco felt himself slipping away again, cold and peaceful in Harry's arms. Harry didnt know what was happening for at least a few minutes, but then he could suddenly feel Draco getting cold again. "No, Draco, no, please," he sobbed, moving the blond hair from Draco's

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face. He quickly got to his feet again behind Draco. He willed himself to get hard and worked at himself furiously. Harry was no longer aware of Snape being in the room. He pulled Draco to him once more and plunged in again. He was determined to do it right this time. Draco was certainly not going to die this way, not at Harry's hands. Draco groaned as he felt Harry push in again, the trickle of magic pulling him back from that quiet place. "No," he pleaded. "Let me go." Harry didn't respond, he just thrust forward, his eyes closed again. It was going to take a miracle for him to reach completion, but if he did this long enough, he would have to eventually. Draco began to thrash again as feeling returned to his limbs, trying to fight against Harry. He continued to plead with Harry to stop. His own body was responding to Harry's magic in spite of his resistance. Harry closed his eyes even tighter and continued thrusting. He was trying to imagine anything that might make this go faster. Draco was not making things any easier. He tried to picture Draco hot and sweaty beneath him, begging Harry to go faster, push harder, to fuck him. It wasn't really working, but it was the only thing Harry could do. Draco was sobbing now, warmth flowing from Harry into him and it felt so good, so right, in spite of everything. He found himself no longer struggling, but pushing back, meeting Harry's thrusts with his hips. Harry could feel Draco responding, and it was a great help. He was gasping for breath now, thrusting faster. Only a few more minutes, he told himself. Only a few more minutes. Harry's magic flared when Draco pushed back, and it sent jolts of pleasure throughout the blonds body. "Harry, yes," he gasped. He was still crying, but now he began to beg Harry for more instead. Harry let out a gasping sob. "Please," he begged himself. "Please just do it." Draco's cock, Draco's hair, Draco's smell, Draco's come; his mind was running through images and memories, and he could feel something starting to happen. A familiar tightening started in his groin. He groaned with relief. "Oh, Gods, Harry." Draco was pushing back with arms and legs

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now, rocking back into Harry. His own cock had filled and was rubbing against the cot with each of Harry's thrusts. Harry clutched at Draco hips and thrust impossibly faster. Every breath hurt now. He was crying out with every push of his own hips. A few more, just a few more. "Fill me," Draco gasped, Harry's magic like a fire inside him and crackling along his skin. And that was it. Finally Harry was coming, pumping all he could into Draco, tears still shining on his face. He collapsed and actually fell backward onto the floor instead of on top of Draco, his breathing still hurting. Harry's magic flared and Draco came with a hoarse shout. Harry's sudden withdrawal startled him, and he looked around wildly for him. He crawled off the cot and over to Harry, pressing himself to the other boy. Harry hugged Draco to him and began rocking. He didn't know what to say. He didn't even know what to think. It felt as if the ground had disappeared and he was simply falling through space and time. That would have been better than what was actually happening to him. After a few minutes of being held by Harry, Draco sighed and shook his head. "Bloody Gryffindor," he said in exasperation. Harry couldn't help but let out a choked laugh at that. "Slytherin prat," he sobbed. "Indeed," came a snide voice from the corner of the room. Harry froze, remembering Snape again. He looked over at him and glared. Draco startled. He had had no idea that Snape was in the room until the man had spoken. He closed his eyes and groaned. Snape's back was still to them. He was apparently bent over, his elbows resting on his knees and his head bent, hair hanging around his face. Harry reluctantly let Draco go and stood to pull his pants back up. He didn't feel as awful as he had a minute ago, but he was still on edge, tense and very upset. He reached down and grabbed Draco's hands to pull him to his feet as well. Draco allowed Harry to help him stand, amused to find himself still dressed from the waist up. He looked around for his trousers and

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shorts, found them, and put them back on. He sat back down on the side of the cot and wiped his wet face on the edge of the blanket. He looked thoughtfully over at his godfather, who had not moved since he had spoken. Harry did not sit down; he moved over close to Draco and stood defensively beside the cot, still staring at Snape.

CHAPTER THIRTY-SIX

Tender Trap
"We're dressed, Severus," Draco said quietly. The older man sat up then, taking a deep breath and bringing his hands up to rub his face before standing. He walked over to the food area and used his wand to start the teapot. Harry's eyes never left Snape, and he followed him with his body as well, turning as Snape walked about the room. "Where's my wand?" he spat. "Safe," Snape said as he prepared a tray with the tea and three cups. He pulled out some tinned foods and set them on the tray as well. When he was finished, he carried the tray over to the table. He pulled his own chair up and gestured for the others to sit. Harry hesitated and looked at Draco. Now that Draco was okay, Harry wasn't so ready to go along with the man who had murdered Albus Dumbledore. Draco stood, glancing at Harry. He held out his hand to the other boy. Harry took Draco's hand after staring at him for a moment. Draco walked over to the table, gently pulling Harry with him, using his free hand to pull out chairs for the two of them. Snape was pouring tea. Now that he was closer, Draco's breath hitched when he saw the telltale red eyes and tear-stained cheeks of the man's face. Harry was very shocked to see that Snape had been crying. He sat in the chair and said nothing, squeezing Draco's hand. Snape automatically added milk and sugar to Draco's tea before pushing it toward him. He pushed unaltered tea at Harry and then set the sugar and milk where the boy could reach it. He put some bread and cheese in front of them as well. Draco took his seat and sipped at his tea, still holding Harry's hand. This was probably the strangest situation Harry had ever been in. He'd just shagged Draco Malfoy with an obviously crying Severus

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Snape in the room; Snape had just killed Dumbledore and now they were all going to have tea together? Draco was quietly nibbling on a piece of cheese, contemplating the situation. "So," he said at last, "I guess the two of you decided to keep me alive anyway. Do you have a plan?" Harry looked at Snape. "I have no idea what's going on," he said. "Just a second ago I found out that damn serpent is still on your arm, Draco." Snape huffed, shaking his head. "It would have made matters much less ... difficult ... if either of you had told us about that serpent before last night." Harry looked at Draco pointedly. Harry had wanted to tell about the serpent, but Draco hadn't. Draco shrugged. "The serpent was placed there last summer, and the spell included an injunction against telling the identity of the target." "You still didn't tell anyone about the serpent, even if you couldn't tell them who it was you had to kill," Harry muttered. "I told you," Draco said. "Yes, and then you didn't want anyone else to know. Ron and Hermione were the only others," Harry said quietly. "You had given up." "Enough," Snape snapped. "What else do you know about its commands? How was it placed there?" Draco sighed and shook his head. "It was put on last year on my birthday. I was told it would release me if the target died. That it would kill me, painfully, on my next birthday if not. He put it on me himself." Harry's hands shook a little at that, and hatred flared up inside him. He didn't say anything though, waiting for Snape's next words. "Could you understand the words of the spell?" Snape asked, studying Draco. "No, it was said in Parseltongue," Draco said. "The snake was curled in His hand. He told me to reach out my hand. When I did, He spoke to it and it slithered up my arm, coiling about me. Then it bit me." Draco shuddered and stared into the empty cup, food forgotten. Harry scooted closer to Draco and squeezed his hand. "I wish I

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would have been there," he said, eyes closed. "I understand Parseltongue." Both Snape and Draco snorted in unison at that. Draco half smiled. "Noble sentiment, but useless," Snape said with a sneer. Harry glared at Snape. "Well, what do we do then?" he spat angrily. Snape ignored Harry for the moment, turning his attention to Draco. "Let me see it again," he said. Draco frowned but laid his left arm on the table and pulled the sleeve up, exposing the serpent. He paled again just looking at it. Harry scowled at it, once again finding that he wished he could just pull it off. Snape leaned forward, picking up Draco's wrist and turning the arm over and back again, examining it. The snake seemed to coil tighter, squeezing Draco's arm. Snape nodded. "So it is responsive," he said quietly. Draco gritted his teeth and nodded. Harry grimaced and squeezed Draco's hand tighter, trying to comfort him. "What difference does that make?" he asked. Draco and Snape both turned toward him and gave him identical frowns. "It means," Snape began, familiar sneer in his voice, "that it may still respond to commands or to actions near it. It means it is listening to us now. It also means that Draco was right in that it would have killed him if he told the wrong person about it." Harry's eyes widened. He turned to Draco. "You never told me that." Draco shrugged. Snape frowned at the two boys. The older man sat back and waved a hand at Draco. "Cover it." Draco nodded, pulling the sleeve back down and buttoning the cuff. The older man got up and began pacing the room. Draco returned to staring at the empty cup. Harry stared from Snape to Draco. "Is that it?" he asked. "We only have one day?" "Less than that," Draco said. "I was born at half past six in the morning." Harry groaned and dropped his head into his hand. "What do we do?" he asked. "What on earth can we possibly do?" Snape leant against the wall, his scowl deeper than usual. "Any use of magic that attempts to force the snake from his arm will result

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in it immediately injecting him," he said. "There is no treatment for the toxin as it is a combination of potion and magic that has been made to resist the usual methods. It is meant to only be removed by the wizard who commanded it in the first place." "Oh, yeah," said Harry sarcastically with a hysterical edge. "I'm sure Voldemort will just pop right in and do it for us." Draco looked at him strangely for a minute. "There was no injunction against telling you. I think he never assumed I would consider that," Draco said quietly. "Of course he wouldn't. Why would he think that you would tell me of all people?" Harry asked, dropping his head into his hand again. "What does it matter? I don't know what the hell to do." Snape walked over to the table, looking down at Draco. "And Potter is the only other wizard known to speak Parseltongue," he said. Harry looked up at Snape, eyes wide. "What are you saying?" he asked, not daring to hope for anything. "It couldn't be that simple," Draco said, eyes narrowed and watching Snape. The older man shook his head. "Yes and no." "What are you talking about?" Harry asked, his grip on Draco tightening again. Draco scowled at Snape. "The answer is no. It's not an option." Snape looked between them, and groaned, throwing up his arms and stalking to the other side of the room. He sat down on one of the cots, his face in his hands. Harry was very confused. "What the hell's going on?" he asked angrily. "Draco, what is it?" Draco refused to look at him, staring at the cup again. "A trap," he said quietly. From across the room, Snape nearly growled. "Damn it, Draco," he snarled. "You have bloody well known the answer all along!" Harry was even more confused now and it was making him angry. "Tell me what the hell's going on!" he yelled. Draco took a deep breath and gritted his teeth. "Tell him," Snape snapped. Draco looked at the wall, nowhere else. "Tell me," Harry growled through his teeth, not caring that Draco would have no choice but to tell him.

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Draco's head snapped toward Harry, and there was anger in his eyes. "He knew. He knew I wanted you. He read it in my mind then and made me into a trap. Not just to kill Dumbledore, but ... to kill you." Harry's hand went limp in Draco's and his face fell. "What?" he whispered. Draco pulled his hand away, crossing his arms across his chest and turning away from Harry. He continued in a quiet voice, "I didn't know. I swear it. I figured it out while reading those damn books you brought from the Black house." Harry couldn't say anything for a minute. "I still don't understand. How could how would any of what's happened lead to my death?" Draco continued in that same voice as if he hadn't even heard Harry. "I knew last night on the Tower. I already knew that the serpent was never meant to let me go, even if I killed Dumbledore. I thought ... I thought that if I did it though, you would kill me. That would solve the problem. I just couldn't do it." Harry buried his hands in his own hair and pulled. "I still don't understand," he said. "Were you meant to kill me as well as Dumbledore? How could you do it if you didn't even know you were supposed to?" Draco sat like a man in a trance, no emotion in his voice anymore as he spoke. "The only way to remove the serpent is for someone who speaks Parseltongue to call it from me to them." Harry stared long and hard at Draco. "I'll do it," he said simply. "I'll do it." "No," Draco said, launching himself from the chair, nearly falling over as the chair crashed to the floor. He ran to the opposite side of the room, arms crossed against his chest, right hand clutching the spot on his arm where the serpent coiled. "Severus," he begged, "please, don't let him do it." "I'm going to do it," Harry said firmly to Snape, getting to his feet. Snape rose to his feet then and stood between him and Draco. "Shut up and sit down, Potter," he snapped. "You don't seem to understand what Draco is trying to tell you." Harry glared at Snape. "Yes, I do!" he yelled. "If I take it from

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him, it'll come to me and he'll be okay! That's all that matters to me!" "No, Potter." Snape's temper flared. "It means it will kill you instead of him. It means everyone who has died to protect you will have died for nothing!" "Why should you bloody care?" Harry screamed, tears coming again. "You don't care what happens to me!" "I care about what you represent," Snape snapped. "Your parents died to save you; your godfather and all those in the tower last night were willing to die for you. Even my own godson wants to die for you!" "I can't let him die!" Harry continued screaming. "I can't!" He fell, shaking, back into his chair, uncontrollable sobs wracking his body. Draco longed to go to Harry, to take him in his arms and hold him. But he didn't trust him not to try something bloody heroic. So he stood against the wall and watched helplessly. Snape stood watching the two boys. He sighed. "We still have tonight. We need to see if there is a way around this. He may be an evil bastard, but he isn't infallible." Harry couldn't respond. He was confused again. Why was Snape talking like this? Why if it had been him that had killed Dumbledore? "Harry," Draco said, his voice shaky, "promise me you won't do it." Harry couldn't look at Draco. How could he promise something like that? He stared at Draco for a while. "I can't," he said. "If we can't get it off your arm by six, then I'm not promising anything," he said firmly, wiping furiously at his face with shaking hands. Draco's face hardened. "Then I swear here and now that if you do it, succeed or not, I will kill myself." Snape hissed and closed his eyes, hands fisted at his side. Harry dropped his head into his hands again. "No, Draco, please don't," he said desperately. "Please, don't." "You can't order me to do anything anymore if you are dead," Draco said. "And I have already made the vow." Harry wanted to hit Draco for being so stupid. "Why would you do something like that, you idiot!" he yelled. "Why?" Snape groaned and sat down again, looking like a man who wanted to be anywhere else at this moment.

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"Because I love you," Draco said. "I don't want to live without you anyway. And they need you. You swore to me you would kill Him. Remember?" Harry closed his eyes and sat there. "Fine," he said blankly at long last. "Fine." "Swear it," Draco said, holding his spot against the wall. Harry stared at him. Could he live without Draco? It didn't seem likely. But then a million images flew past his mind's eye. Ron and Hermione, all the Weasleys, all of his Housemates, Dumbledore, The Order, Sirius, his parents. Snape and Draco were right. Too many people had given their lives to protect him, and he couldn't fail them, no matter how much he wanted to die if Draco did. He closed his eyes again. "I swear it," he said in a voice barely above a whisper. Once the words were out of his mouth, Draco strode across the room and wrapped his arms around Harry, holding him tightly. "I love you," he whispered as he buried his face in the other boy's hair. Harry clutched Draco tightly to his body. "I love you," he whispered in response. The boys stood there for a minute. Finally, Snape gave a snort and stood up. "This is getting us nowhere," he sneered. Harry had to close his eyes for a moment to calm himself. "What do you think we'll be able to accomplish in less than a day in this one little room?" he asked angrily, loosening his hold on Draco, but not letting go of him fully. Snape walked back to the table and sat down. "Draco, tell me every area you have already researched in this," Snape said, gesturing to the chair beside him. Draco kissed Harry's forehead and then let go, setting his chair back up again and re-seating himself. He began to outline the research he had done before and since he had figured out the nature of the serpent. Snape nodded, asked questions, made comments but otherwise could find no fault in the work done so far. Harry sat next to Draco and said nothing. He watched Snape and Draco intently, hoping that something Draco said would make sense to Snape in some way. An hour later, they wound down, finally just sitting there, thinking. "There has to be another way," Snape said with a frown.

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"I have tried," Draco said, "but it is essentially a time-delayed killing spell. Once created, the serpent will have its victim." Harry was thinking as well. "There's nothing I can do with Parseltongue? Nothing at all?" Snape considered it for a minute. "We need to find out and there is only one library I know that would have the books I need." He frowned. "My father's." Draco nodded. Snape stood up. "I will return as soon as I can," he said. "Unfortunately, I don't have the ability to, in the time we have left, reset the wards on this place." He gestured to the room. "You will be trapped here until I return." Harry was nervous about that, but nodded. If there was any chance of saving Draco's life, Harry would take it. Snape gathered his things. He then reached in his robes and pulled out two wands, laying them on table. He nodded, and with a loud crack, was gone.

CHAPTER THIRTY-SEVEN

What If?
Harry turned to Draco, frowning. He stared at him for a long time. "I don't know what I'll do if I can't save you," he said, closing his eyes. Draco reached for his hand and then pulled Harry upright and into his arms. His lips closed on Harry's as his other hand slid into the boy's hair. Harry kissed Draco back as if it would be their last. "Oh, Merlin, I love you," he gasped, clutching at Draco's robes. "I am yours," Draco said softly. "Show me. Make love to me." Harry pulled back and looked Draco in the eyes. He nodded slowly and kissed him again, pulling him flush against his body. He stood, pulling Draco with him and bringing him over to one of the cots, never breaking the kiss. Draco sighed, opening to Harry's kisses and his touch, following him where he led. Harry shook as he began undressing Draco slowly, kissing every inch of new skin exposed. He felt like crying, but held it back, trying to be strong for Draco. He knew Draco needed this Harry needed this. Draco trembled under Harry's touch. He wished he could have a lifetime of being with Harry. His throat was thick, and he swallowed around the lump in it. He only had this one night left, and he was glad that Harry understood why he needed this. He sighed and arched as Harry undressed him, his flesh responding happily to his lover. "I love you," Harry said, sighing as he licked around one of Draco's nipples. "I love you." Quick fingers fumbled with the fasteners of Draco's trousers, and he ran his hands around the skin there before he slowly slid down Draco's body to remove his shoes and socks and finally his slacks. He kissed his way back up Draco's legs, to his chest again as he began pulling at his own robes. Draco's quick fingers worked at Harry's shirt and trousers,

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helping him undress. He wanted to touch every part of Harry. He wanted to know every intimate inch of him. Harry let out a gasping breath as Draco's fingers touched his skin. He shucked his robe and his unbuttoned shirt off and then toed off his shoes and tried wriggling out of his trousers, still unwilling to pull his mouth away from Draco's skin. "Wait," Draco said, smiling. He Summoned his wand to him and flicked it toward the cots. Three of them slid together and, with another quick spell, were Transfigured into a large comfortablelooking bed. He grinned and raised an eyebrow at Harry. Harry smiled down at Draco. "That's better," he whispered, moving his mouth back to Draco's skin. He finally managed to get all of his clothes off and hissed as he allowed himself to slide completely against Draco's skin. "Gods, yes," Draco gasped. The feel of Harry's skin was pure delight. He pulled Harry back with him into the bed. Harry mouthed hotly and wetly along Draco's chest and collarbone, licking and sucking at the skin there. He never wanted this to stop, and his heart gave a painful beat at the thought that this might be the final time. "I love you," he said again. He'd never meant what he said so strongly in his life. "Yours, love, only yours," Draco whispered, working long fingers into Harry's hair, the thickness of it luxurious. He still trembled under the other boy. He wondered, if he lived, if he would always tremble at Harry's touch. Harry had to squeeze his eyes shut for a moment to keep from crying, but he held out and moved back up to Draco's face. He kissed his lips slowly. He brought his tongue out and licked along them, tracing them, trying to burn them to memory. Draco's mouth opened for Harry, feeling his tongue against his lips and wanting more of him. One hand still clutching his hair, Draco's other hand slid up, stroking Harry's back. He marvelled at the texture of bone, muscle, and skin so warm and vibrant. He had always admired Harry's fire and the way it always seemed to radiate from every part of him. Harry traced Draco's teeth and explored every bump and ridge in his mouth, moaning slightly. He pressed his hand flat to Draco's stomach running it along that smooth, pale skin that he would never

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forget. His other hand found its way into Draco's hair, moving through the fine strands. It felt overwhelmingly good and, yet, Draco couldn't help the tears that started to fall. Never did he want to live more than when Harry touched him. Harry moved the hand on Draco's stomach down to explore how his hipbones jutted out slightly and all of his sharp, hard angles. He traced fingers through the trail of hair from Draco's navel downward, moaning again. "Yes, Harry, yes," Draco murmured against him, not caring that he was crying. His hand on Harry's back traced a similar path down Harry's spine. His breath hitched again when he reached the base. He loved that spot just before the curve of Harry's arse. He splayed his hand out, palm there but fingers arching up the swell of muscle. Harry took a sharp breath and moved his hand lower. He touched gently along Draco's erection and his balls, trying to memorise everything there as well. He moved down and licked at Draco's nipple again, moving his hand just a bit. Draco moaned, arching into Harry's touch. "Yes, yes, I love your touch, your tongue," he gasped, pulling at Harry's hair. Harry was gasping now too, letting out quiet moans as he began to thrust lightly against Draco's leg, still moving his hand. "I want ..." Draco gasped, "inside you." Harry hissed at that. "I'll give you ... anything ... you want," he panted, kissing Draco again. Draco's tongue thrust into Harry's mouth, mirroring what he wanted. He shifted his weight and rolled them over, grinning down at him. His face was still wet with tears, a strange contrast with his wild smile. He pinned Harry under him and began devouring him, licking and chewing at his jaw. Harry cried out and gasped, his entire body seeming to catch fire. He arched up into Draco, his mouth open and his head thrown back. "Fuck, yes," Draco growled against his lover's throat. He held Harry's shoulders and continued down his chest, sliding his body down Harry's. He bit and licked his collarbone and down his pecs to a nipple. There he latched on, sucking, rolling that flesh with his tongue. Harry moaned loudly, arching up again. Draco's amazing ability

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to make Harry's brain stop working was a wonderful ability indeed. "Draco ... fuck me ... so hard ... I forget every ... thing. Please," he gasped, his hands in Draco's hair. "Just ... fuck me. God, please." "Yes, fuck you hard and deep, so you feel me everywhere," Draco said, lifting his head to look up at Harry. "Spread your legs for me." Harry's moan was so wanton it was almost embarrassing as he immediately did what Draco told him, spreading his legs as wide as he could, chest heaving. "Gods, you are so, so beautiful," Draco moaned, kneeling between his legs and looking in awe at the boy. "Please," Harry moaned, feeling like he was going to die if Draco didn't touch him in the next second. "Please, Draco." He was grasping and running his hands down his own chest and stomach, desperate for any sort of contact. Draco ran his hands up Harry's thighs to caress his erection and cup his balls. "Yes, my love. I am going to fill you," he promised. Harry tossed his head and thrust up into Draco's hands. "Please," he gasped again. "Please. Do ... anything to ... me. Anything ... you ... want." "All that can be done in a night, love. All that I can," he said. He pressed his fingers below Harry's balls, his other hand stroking his cock. "Is there lube?" Harry nodded and flung his hand out. He was so lost, and his magic so out of control, that he did a nonverbal spell and couldn't even be arsed to care. The lubricant that Snape had given him earlier flew into his hand and he tossed it down to Draco, sobbing for him to, "Hurry, please." Draco's hard cock twitched at the casual display of power, and he quickly poured the oil into the palm of one hand and coated the fingers of the other. He slicked his own cock with the palm while reaching fingers to Harry's entrance and pressing the first one in. "Yes," Harry hissed, but it wasn't enough. "Hurry, Draco, please," he whined, pushing against Draco's hand. He wanted to feel him everywhere, like Draco had said. Draco gave up preparing Harry and moved forward, pressing his cock against his entrance. "I am going to fuck you deep. Fuck you so that I am inside every part of you," he told him, watching Harry's face.

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Harry smiled and moaned at the same time, his mouth open. "Please, do it," he said, wanting to wrap his legs around Draco and make him fuck him. Draco pushed in, smooth and steady, feeling the tight heat of Harry surrounding him as he did. Magic crackled up his spine, and he gasped, finally seating himself fully. "Feel me, Harry," he moaned. "I am in you; I will always be part of you." Harry gasped and cried out. Draco's words were the most beautiful words he had ever heard while simultaneously being the saddest. "Always," he cried, arching his back. "Always yours," Draco said and pulled back, thrusting in quickly. He watched Harry writhe underneath him as he began to move his hips in a fast, smooth rhythm. Harry grasped the bed beneath him, moaning and doing his best to push down against Draco. "Yes!" he shouted. "Yes, please! Do this to me forever, Draco, please do this to me forever!" The tears he'd held back began falling from his eyes as the impossibility of his words sunk in. Even if it were possible for two people to do this forever, Harry and Draco wouldn't be able to. "Yes, forever," Draco gasped, tears returning again he surrendered to the waves of joy, pleasure and loss. "Inside you, always!" "Always!" Harry cried, and he knew it was true. Even if Draco left him, he wouldn't leave him. He would be inside him forever, forever Harry's. "Yes!" Draco thrust harder, faster, feeling the energy of their magic coiling around them and through them. Harry could feel Draco's magic in him stronger than he ever had. It was quick and struck like lightning. They were so powerful together; Harry could've sworn they were vibrating the bed with their magic alone. As Draco thrust harder into him, Harry felt the magic flare up even more, audibly cracking around them. Draco grasped Harry's cock in one slick hand, the other clutching the other boy's hip. He was rocking back and forth above his lover. The power coiling through him peaked and Draco arched into Harry, slamming into him, coming and screaming. "Yes!" Harry cried, arching up as far as his body would allow. Draco's power went through him like a wave of pure pleasure,

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reaching everywhere, from his cock, to the tip of his nose. Every part of him was in total ecstasy. He couldn't breathe, he couldn't think, he didn't even remember where he was for a glorious few seconds as he came moments after Draco's release. Time felt suspended, their power entwined even more intimately than their bodies. Still shuddering and gasping, Draco leant forward, pressing deep still, and kissed Harry, using his lips to gently rub against his lover's as he breathed him in. Harry kissed back just as gently, somehow able to control his breathing, or perhaps he wasn't breathing; he still wasn't able to tell. He wrapped his legs around Draco and held him, whispering words of love and comfort that he wouldn't even be able to remember in a few minutes. Draco was still crying, his tears mingling with Harry's as he kissed him. He wrapped one hand in Harry's hair and with the other he cupped his cheek. "I would spend my life with you if I could," he whispered in his ear. Harry's sobs shook his entire body, but they were silent apart from the gasping breaths. "You will," he wept. "You'll be with me forever." "Yes, always," Draco said with a sigh, feeling it was true no matter what happened at sunrise. He didn't want to move, but eventually he allowed himself to relax, pulling out and sliding over to lie beside Harry. He held him close, laying small kisses on his face. Harry closed his eyes, allowing Draco to kiss him. He was terrified, but felt calm in Draco's arms at the same time. "You'll be with me forever," he whispered again. It was a very comforting thought. Draco watched Harry, studying his face. He wished he could wake up for the next 150 years looking at that face. Now, with only a few hours left, he found himself wanting to fantasise about that life. What would Harry be like in five years? In ten? What would he look like as an old man? He really wished he would see it himself. Harry stayed like he was for what felt like forever, but certainly wasn't. He wished it had been, that he was able to lay in this bed in this room with the one person in the world he could ever love this much. He actually started to fall asleep, but he forced himself to open his eyes again. Sleep wasn't something he could do right now. He

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stared at Draco, not wanting to speak, somehow feeling like talking would start time up again, prove that fucking time still mattered. Draco smiled, watching Harry open sleepy green eyes. Small moments flooded his memory. He saw a young boy in Muggle clothes standing uncertainly in a robe shop. He was the angry boy on the train. Harry on a broom speeding toward the Snitch, his look triumphant; Harry diving into the water to rescue his friends. Draco had spent the last five years of his life watching every move Harry ever made. And it pleased him. The last sight he wanted in this world would be Harry's eyes looking at him. "I love you more than anything," Harry whispered finally. "I swear to anything, on anything, that you mean more to me than anything else ever could. I would die for you if you'd let me. I'd do anything for you. You'll still be the most important thing to me when I die. Nothing and no one will ever change that. I swear to you." Draco started crying again. He couldn't help it. He didn't want to be the cause of so much pain. "If I die, Harry," he said quietly, "don't stop loving. Don't spend your life alone. That is what I want. " Harry squeezed his eyes shut and buried his face in Draco's neck. He couldn't imagine loving anyone else, but he nodded. He would give Draco whatever he wanted. "Good," he said, kissing Harry quickly and lying back on the bed. "Let's not talk about what happens when I die. What would happen if I lived?" he asked quietly. Harry kept his eyes shut and couldn't help but let out a shaky laugh ending with a sob. "You could drive me crazy f forever. We could fight t together in the war, and when I've k killed him, because I will kill h him, we could get a house together w w wherever you wanted. And we could get get m married and I could be allowed to l love you for forever, and and and " But he couldn't go on, because he knew that none of that was likely to happen and it hurt worse than everything else. His crying took control of his speaking ability. "I'd like a cat," Draco said quietly, smiling. Harry laughed at that, and he laughed and laughed and cried, and he didn't know what he was doing or which way was up. Everything was mad and he held Draco tightly. "I'd get you one," he said quietly when his fit was over.

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Draco smiled happily, imagining a domestic life with Harry and a cat. It was so preposterous and yet, it sounded perfect. "Did you ever think about getting married and having kids and the whole plan for your life?" Harry laughed at that too. "No," he said simply. "I've only ever thought about my future up to defeating Voldemort." "My parents had mine planned for me." Draco snorted. "Neither you nor a cat were part of the plan," he said with a laugh. Harry smiled. "Would you have carried out the plan had I not come into the picture?" "Actually, the plan before the Dark Lord returned ... well, that one hadn't sounded bad at the time," Draco mused. "I was to marry a pure-blooded witch, preferably a moneyed one, and carry on the Malfoy name and fortune." "Of course," Harry said. "I am not a witch, I'm not a pure-blood, and I'm not particularly moneyed. I suppose I break all the rules then?" He had some money, but he knew it was nothing like what Draco was used to. "I think the old plan lost a lot when serving a madman became part of it," Draco sighed. "I don't care so much about the rest, though I would miss the money, I think." Harry chuckled and shook his head. He wondered how on earth he was being so calm. "I would give you everything I have," he said, kissing Draco's nose as he liked to do. "I've seen the way you dress, Potter," Draco teased. "I suppose I would have to get a job. How does Minister of Magic sound?" Harry laughed. "Perfect," he said without an ounce of sarcasm. "Absolutely perfect." Draco laughed. "Couldn't do worse than what we've had." He snorted. He was toying with Harry's hair again. "What would you do? Play Quidditch?" "I wanted to be an Auror, but with all this fighting already, Quidditch sounds kind of nice. Think I'm good enough?" Harry asked, smiling lopsidedly. "Prat," Draco said, shoving him and pulling his hair a bit. "I guess it's a good thing I like watching your arse, cause that's the view I get way too often." Harry mock-gasped. "Is Draco Malfoy admitting, finally, that

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Harry Potter can whip him on the Quidditch field?" he asked, eyebrows raised and a smile still on his face. "Never," Draco drawled. "You have just been unnaturally lucky." Harry looked so cute, he couldn't help but follow it with a quick kiss. "Ha!" Harry said after the kiss. "In your dreams, Malfoy! You have yet to beat me. I assure you, it's pure talent." "I would love to show you pure talent," Draco purred. "I think we need a rematch." Harry quirked an eyebrow. "Oh, do you?" he asked, smiling slyly. It was if everything had flown out of the non-existent window, and the only thing in the world that mattered was Harry and Draco right then and their last bit of normalcy. "One on one, you and me on the Quidditch field and a Snitch." Draco smiled. "The loser gets on his knees to the winner in front of the entire school and proclaims him the best." "You'd better practise getting on your knees then, because I will win," Harry said smugly. "There is no doubt in my mind. I'm sorry." He smiled hugely. "So cocky." Draco waggled his eyebrows. "But you will be the one on your knees, Potter." Harry shook his head, still smiling. "No, no, I'm sorry, Malfoy. I guess I'll just have to prove it to you at this match." "Then it is a bet?" Draco smiled. "Oh, it's a bet," Harry said, and he leant in and kissed Draco. "You really would have to try your hardest. I know how much you like being on you knees in front of me, but just this once, you'd have to resist temptation." Draco's smile was replaced with a quickening of his breath at the image in his mind, and he was suddenly feeling his "hardest" could be literal in moments. Harry looked at Draco with half-lidded eyes and came forward for another slow kiss. "Is it a deal?" he whispered, voice low and deep. Draco nodded, licking his lips. "Yes. Very much, yes." He rubbed his hardening cock against Harry's hip. Harry let out a hot, audible breath. "Good," he said, and then he brought their mouths crashing together again.

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They made love again, laughter and tears as much a part of the experience as their orgasms. Finally, blissful, they dozed off. Draco woke later, unable to tell if they had slept for ten minutes or hours. His heart was racing. What time was it? He looked around the room, but Snape had not returned. Harry felt Draco wake up, and it took him a moment to remember where he was and why Draco might sit up so quickly, but then he sat up too. "Where's Snape?" he asked, voice thick with sleep. "Not here," Draco answered quietly. He picked up his wand and did a quick Tempus Spell. 5:57 AM. Draco's heart began to pound in his chest, the sound seeming loud in his ears. Harry's breath caught in his throat at the look on Draco's face. "What time is it?" he asked slowly, dreading the answer. Draco throat didn't work for a minute. He looked down at his arm at the snake coiled there. He had been preparing for this for a while, but it still seemed too soon. He lay back down against Harry's body, his unmarked arm around Harry's waist. "Just hold me," he said. Harry closed his eyes and held Draco to him, trembling. "How much longer?" he whispered. He needed to know. "Only half an hour," Draco whispered, almost afraid to say it aloud. "No," Harry whimpered, pulling Draco tightly. "I'm not ready yet." Draco nodded. "I want more, too. More time with you." "I can't let you go yet," Harry said, voice shaking now as well as his body. "I can't do it." "No choice," Draco said quietly. Harry shook his head no, clinging to Draco as if doing so would keep him there. "No, no, no," he sobbed. Draco closed his eyes, trying to relax. He breathed deep, letting the feel of Harry holding him be the only thing he acknowledged. Harry held Draco to him and cried. He cried for a long time, saying no, no, no over and over again. He couldn't do this; he couldn't. "Shh, love," Draco soothed. "Let it go. It's over." "No," Harry cried. "No, it can't be." He sat up suddenly, shaking still. He Summoned his wand and did a Tempus Spell of his own. He

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nearly choked when he saw that he only had a little over ten minutes. Shaking, he leapt from the bed to his feet, looking wildly around the room. It was like he was waiting for something to rise up and shout that it was what he needed. Draco was startled. He was frightened but didn't want to show it. "Harry, please stay with me," he asked. Harry's breathing was coming in sharp gasps and he continued to look around the room. He didn't respond to Draco, and he ran over and started pulling drawers out like a mad man, throwing things all over the place. He didn't know what he was looking for. Something, anything, please. Draco watched as Harry tore the room apart. "Harry, there is nothing left." Harry wasn't listening to Draco. Tears were obscuring his vision now. "No. No. Please give me something," he begged. He whirled around once more and then dropped to his knees, sobbing. He threw himself on the floor and on top of many of the things he had pulled from their places. There was nothing. Nothing in this room could help him. Nothing. He felt something digging uncomfortably into his skin and reached beneath himself to throw it furiously across the room. He brought it up and pulled his hand back, ready to chuck whatever it was, but then he stopped and looked at what was in his hand. His eyes widened considerably and he turned them slowly from the object in his hand to Draco still in the bed. Draco watched silently while Harry lost it. He didn't know what he had expected, but this wasn't it. But when Harry held up the knife, his eyes widened. "You promised, Harry," he said. Harry still didn't say anything. He got to his feet and came back over to Draco. His hands were shaking so violently, he almost dropped the long kitchen knife. "What if we cut it off?" he asked, his voice as shaky as his hands. Draco looked at him, unsure what he could be talking about. "The serpent? If you cut the serpent it will still kill me. It's not a real snake, Harry. It is magic." Harry's eyes were impossibly wide. "Your arm," he rasped. Draco's stopped breathing for a moment, and he thought maybe his heart had stopped too. "My arm?" he asked. "With a kitchen knife?"

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Harry swallowed. He knew they didn't have much time. "It's the only thing there is! It's the only option left!" Draco swallowed hard. "It would take too long to saw through the muscle and bone with that," he said quietly. "We have to try!" Harry said desperately, but then he paused. "Transfigure it," he said quickly. "Transfigure it into a better blade." Draco felt like he was in some kind of weird dream. It didn't feel real. He grabbed his wand and Summoned a chair to him. He sat up, still naked, on the edge of the bed. He nodded to the chair, and Harry set the knife on it. Draco took a deep breath and Transfigured the knife into a sword. Harry looked insane, and Draco had no idea if this had any chance of working. But he wasn't spending his last few minutes arguing with him. Harry was shaking even harder now as he picked up the sword. He was breathing heavily and he turned to Draco. He looked at him for a moment and then dove to the floor and pulled his own belt out of his trousers. He handed it to Draco. "Bite down on that," he said, wondering how much time they had left. Draco shook his head and used the belt on his upper arm instead, pulling the tourniquet tight. Then he lay down on the bed, laying his left arm across the seat of the chair and looking up at Harry. "You'll need to use Sanguinem Supprimere to keep me from bleeding to death if this works. Harry ... either way, thank you. Remember, I love you." Harry closed his eyes for a few seconds and then opened them again, determination taking fear's place. "I love you, Draco," he said, and then he raised the sword over his head and brought it swinging down on Draco's arm with all the strength in his body. Draco knew it would hurt, but for a moment, there was no pain. There was only the revolting and disorienting image of his arm falling to the floor as the sword cleaved through it and split the wooden chair. The blood washed over the chair parts, arm, blade and floor. The world spun as he looked up at Harry Harry's very wide green eyes. The world twisted and turned black. Blood had splattered across Harry's face and chest. He could hardly believe what he'd just done. He dropped the sword to the floor with a loud clunk. There was so much blood, so much blood everywhere, and it continued flowing from Draco's arm. Harry reached for his wand and did the spell Draco had told him to. The

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blood thankfully stopped. He stared at the bloody stump of Draco's arm and then vomited all over the floor. He wiped his mouth weakly. Had it worked? How could he tell? He sat gently on the bed and looked down at Draco's pale, unconscious face. He used his wand to do another Tempus Spell. If Draco had been born at 6:30 AM in the morning, then his birthday had come three minutes ago. Harry closed his eyes and, hoping against hope, lowered his head to Draco's chest. At first he heard nothing and nearly went insane again, but then he heard it a faint beating. Harry's eyes snapped open and his heart leapt. He moved very close to Draco's face and held perfectly still, and then he felt light breath on his face. Harry's heart felt like it burst then, and he nearly passed out he was so relieved. He began crying and pulled Draco's limp body into his lap, hugging him more tightly than he ever had. He would never let anything harm Draco again. Ever. Snape found them like that, naked and covered in blood. Harry was still holding Draco in his arms. He wrapped Draco in a blanket and prodded a stunned Harry into putting on some clothing. He Apparated them to St Mungos and left them there. Harry was sitting in a chair next to Draco's hospital bed in St Mungos. Draco's "arm" was wrapped in gauze and he was still out cold, probably now due to the Pain Potions the Healers had given him, but he was alive. Harry still couldn't believe he'd cut his arm off, but he'd take an armless Draco to a dead one any day. He sighed, feeling exhausted, but he wasn't going to take eyes off Draco until he woke. Harry wanted him to know he was there. He couldn't stop staring at him. The Healers and staff at the hospital had wanted to get Harry his own room and bed, but he was not going to leave Draco's side. He wondered how long it would take for his friends to show up. Probably not long, but he was glad they weren't there yet. Draco didn't know where he was. Actually, Draco barely knew who he was at the moment. He opened his eyes, hissing and shutting them again when the light hurt. Harry gasped and moved his chair closer to the bed. "Draco?" he asked quietly, reaching for his right hand. "Mmm," Draco murmured, his mouth dry and tasting of something awful. He felt a hand in his and clutched it instinctively.

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Harry sighed and pressed his forehead to Draco's stomach. "I'm here, love. I'm here," he said, squeezing Draco's hand. "Harry?" Draco rasped and tried again to open his eyes. He felt the other boy's head on his belly and looked down at the messy black hair. "Where?" Harry raised his head up and looked at Draco. He smiled hugely just to see his eyes open, and his heart felt like it was going to burst again. "We're in St Mungos," he said quietly. "I suppose that means I am alive." Draco smirked. "Yes." Harry let out a sigh. "Yes, you are." He kissed Draco's hand. "Alive." Draco started to nod, but that hurt, so he settled for squeezing Harry's hand. He frowned, trying to remember what had happened. The image of his bloodied arm on the floor flashed in his mind, and he looked quickly to his left, seeing the bandaged stump. He promptly vomited over the left side of the bed. Harry gasped. "Draco!" he let out, the sudden movement scaring him. "Are you all right?" he asked worriedly. "Water?" Draco rasped. Harry nodded quickly and reached for the water that was actually his from the bedside table. He brought the glass to Draco's lips; it took him back to the hospital wing in school all those weeks ago. Draco drank the water, grimacing at the even worse taste in his mouth now. "Bloody hell," he cursed. He shook his head as if to clear it. "So you really did it? And it worked?" he said as he sunk back against the pillow. "Obviously," Harry said, smoothing Draco's hair from his face. "You're here, aren't you?" He smiled a bit. Draco glanced at the closed drapes on the window. "How long was I out? Where is Snape? Am I under arrest?" he asked in quick succession, he brain seeming to wake up now. "You've been out pretty much all day. It's 8:00. Snape dropped us off here and left. I don't know where he went. And no, you're not under arrest or at least I don't think so ..." Harry gulped, having not thought of that last one. Draco sighed, and then smiled up at Harry. "Do you know what this means, Potter?" Harry smiled back, but raised an eyebrow. "What?" he asked.

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Draco smirked. "Let's make it a multiple choice answer. A) You are stuck with me now. B) You will have to fuck me before morning. C) You never know when to quit. D) You owe me a Quidditch match or E) All of the above." Harry smiled and his eyes softened. He moved up slightly so that he was right above Draco's face. "I think I'll go with E," he said, and then bent forward and touched his lips to Draco's.

About the Authors


Slashpervert has been reading and writing fan fiction long enough to

remember why they call it slash back when it was still published in fanzines, printed via mimeograph or copy machines, and sold at science fiction conventions. In real life, Slashpervert is a journalist and social scientist, who has written and published hundreds of articles and a handful of books. Slashpevert also writes original fiction under the name D.M. Atkins. recently began writing slash though she has been reading it for years. Currently, writer is most definitely the most definitive term for her. Apart from fan fiction, Sayingsorry_hh has one co-authored original novel in the works, and one original novel for teens shes been working on for quite some time.

Sayingsorry_hh has been writing for nearly her entire life, but only

Slashpervert and Sayingsorry_hh began writing together in

November 30, 2006. They adapted the RPG format to use as a style of co-writing in which each writes the perspective of one of the main characters. (For example, in fan fiction, Slashpervert writes Draco and Sayingsorry_hh writes Harry.) They have written a dozen novels together, including fan fiction and original fiction.

All the books in The Bound Prince Series


Prince Series Draco kisses Harry in the bathroom at Hogwarts. They are unprepared for where that will take them. But willing to find out.

Harry Potter and The Bound Prince Book One of The Bound

Harry Potter and The Secret Keeper - Book Two of The Bound

Prince Series Harry and Draco must find a way to live together now, figure out where they will live, and how they will continue Harrys fight against Voldemort, including the search for the Horcruxes. As if that werent enough for them to deal with, Lucius Malfoy (and his fellow Death Eater prisoners) escapes from prison and comes looking for his son.

Harry Potter and The White Queen - Book Three of The Bound
Prince Series Harry and Draco continue to explore what their relationship means as they search for and destroy Horcruxes. The Order of the Phoenix continues to fight as the war escalates and lives are lost.

Harry Potter and The Beloved Incubus Book Four of The

Bound Prince Series Harry and Draco are married and expecting a baby meanwhile the war has escalated. They have to find the remaining Horcruxes before too many more lives are lost. Prince Series Harry and Draco, with the help of Ron, Hermione, and their extended chosen family, have destroyed nearly all the Horcruxes. They are preparing for the final confrontation with Voldemort when a family member is kidnapped and the day is upon them to take the fight to the madman.

Harry Potter and The Serpent King Book Five of The Bound

Harry Potter and The Dragons Treasure Book Six of The

Bound Prince Series Harry and Draco survived the war and defeated Voldemort. Now, they are married, have a child and should be leading a happy life. Yet, issues from the past create unexpected pitfalls to building their new life in this time of peace.

Other Books by Slashpervert and Sayingsorry_hh


A Love So Belated Harry goes to the Manor to return Dracos
wand to him and begins an unlikely friendship. But what happens when friendship changes to desire?

A Heart So Ravenous Sequel to A Love So Belated. Draco sets


himself on a path to please both Harry Potter and his parents. Will he survive it? For more fan fiction by Slashpervert see: www.slashpervert.org For original fiction see: www.dmatkins.net