Author's Notes: fuck, i know this sucks. sorry already.
Slowly, it began to rain. Silver droplets of water fell heavily from the heavens above, grazing his already tear-slicked face. As it washed away the salty stains, cool and comforting, Draco watched the candle flames around him flicker and die.
He laid there, in the rain, unwilling to get up, unwilling to do much else, and remembered Harry. He saw the stars, but the diamonds blurred as more rain pounded down from the night sky onto his face and body, and then he lost sight of those beautiful lights Harry loved.
Draco felt that ugly prick behind his eyes return. This time, he let himself cry silently, hot tears mingling with the cool rain. He did not even bother to think about what his father would say had he seen him in this state, because he never cried. Malfoys never cried. Draco Malfoy never cried. He had not cried when his father beat him, had not cried when Voldermort took him, not even when they pressed that red hot metal into his arm, stinging his nose with the smell of his own burnt flesh, branding him and sealing his supposed fate.
Draco now saw of the look of love that shone from Harry’s eyes, that look of love for him, and cried. A loud thunder clapped, and raw, painful screams tore themselves from Draco’s unused throat. Having not spoken for the past three weeks, the screams hurt, but Draco did not stop, letting them drown in the loud sounds of rumbling.
He yelled into the howling winds that swept about him, and having finally lost that last hold over himself, he poured out all the sorrow he had held on to for so long into the storm that raged around him, sobbing as he fell to the ground.
Sirius found him crumpled in the wet grass the next morning, soaked to the skin, shivering in the fitful slumber his spent body had fallen into. The candles he lit had been extinguished in the previous night’s storm, and as the older man bent down to lift up the pale form from the ground, he gave silent thanks for the loud screaming that had pierced the night air a few hours before.
He sighed again and began walking back to the house, knowing how carefully Draco had built the walls around himself after, and how silent he had been. He was silent as they nailed the coffin, silent when they lowered it into its grave, silent when people pointed accusing fingers at him, calling him a hypocrite, calling him cold-blooded and heartless. He was silent all the time, and those who were close saw that the slight spark his grey eyes used to have had gone.
Sirius let out a shuddering breath, ready to let the tears fall again, and felt a squeeze on his shoulder. Remus was standing next to him, with a faint, weak smile that did not reach his eyes on his features, looking more tired than ever. Both men looked sadly at Draco as Remus held the door open for Sirius to enter with his burden. He’s so light, Sirius thought, and remembered that the boy never ate at all.
Remus watched as his lover carefully laid the Malfoy heir onto the bed, tucking him in, casting a drying charm on the clothes as he did, and went to prepare breakfast. He had heard those screams too, and together he and Sirius had wept with Draco, in each others arms, curled under the blankets. Draco would never feel Harry’s arms around him or taste his lips again, and Remus knew that he would fall apart if that ever happened to him and Sirius.
Oh Harry, can you see this? Can you feel his pain? Is this what you meant to put him through?
The werewolf looked up from the coffee pot as Sirius entered the kitchen and poured out two cups of hot liquid. There were lines under the other man’s eyes, and he knew that he had lines under his own as well, only a great many more.
‘He misses Harry.’
The barest of whispers.
‘Everyone misses him Padfoot.’ Remus crossed the room and sat down with Sirius at the table.
‘NO! Not EVERYONE Moony!’ The ex-convict jumped out off his seat in rage, his voice cackling with angry energy.
‘Look at Draco, Moony! Just FUCKING look at that him!’ Remus looked on, his face stricken, as Sirius began pacing the kitchen.
‘He’s like a fucking corpse! He doesn’t say a fucking thing and he doesn’t fucking eat anything and he doesn’t…he doesn’t…’ He finished in a whimper, and Remus caught him before he fell to the kitchen floor, his body racking with sobs.
‘Shhh…everything’ll be alright. Shhh…’ He soothed the other man’s back with his hand, and helped him to stand, wishing with everything he had that his words were true. They made their way to the living room where Sirius soon fell asleep in Remus’s arms. A low thudding from the stairs made Remus look up. Hermione had just gotten up and was coming down for breakfast.
The war was over. The evil dark lord had been vanquished forever, but at a terrible price to the wizarding world. Their hero, that one boy who defeated him once before those seventeen years ago, that one Harry Potter, that one and only Boy-who-lived, was dead. The ministry told the public that it was of an exertion of the powers that he was to young to possess, but only those closest knew the true cause.
Harry was killed by the Ministry of Magic. He knew about it, and had accepted it. Why? For the sake of the wizarding world, of course. Because he was their hero, their bringer of light, their fucking salvation. As long as he was alive, the ministry officials told Harry, there were chances that Voldermort could be revived.
Never mind that the last spell cast would extinguish his soul forever, never mind that all death-eaters, both potential and already initiated ones were already robbed of their souls by the dementors Never mind that Harry was barely over twenty, never mind that he was loved, and never mind that he did not want to die.
For the sake of the wizarding world, they insisted to him, for the sake of the wizarding world. He was their promised messiah, their saviour, and he could not deny them that guarantee that evil would not return.
They had said that to him without Dumbledore’s knowledge, and had he known, he would have strangled the ministers, every single one of them, with his old, bony hands. But he did not, and Harry, with his loving heart and giving nature, chose to give what he was famous for keeping, his life.
There was a sole witness to his death, and as Harry choked out blood, he found himself cradled to a warm chest, his face washed with scented tears. He had recognized the smell of mints and pine, and saw those beautiful grey eyes his heart ached to leave.
He had touched his hand to those rare tears Draco Malfoy never shed, suddenly remembering what had made him so hesitant to agree to the request of his death. Draco. His love, his life and all he stood for. He then whispered to Draco, promises he was sorry he could not keep, apologies for breaking those he had already made.
As he breathed his last on that battlefield, a few feet from the crumpled body of Voldermort, dying from the poison he had promised to swallow at the end, he told Draco that he loved him, and closed his emerald eyes one last time after Draco kissed him and whispered that he loved him too, sighing as he did so with a sadness which had haunted Draco ever since.
They had to pry Harry out of Draco’s grip then, because he had refused to let go. Then they used that act against him, calling him a lunatic, pointing at his mark, telling the public of Draco’s eagerness to impress his master, even in death, with a dead Harry Potter in his arms.
The ministry then tried to do away with Draco Malfoy, that one man who knew and had seen the truth, but Severus Snape and Albus Dumbledore vouched for him before they could send him to become a permanent resident of St. Mungo’s Mentally Inane Wards. Those closest were horrified by what Draco told them, but they believed him, and the Ministry never lost so many of its employees in a single day.
Draco grew to hate the ministry with a passion, as did everyone who knew the ugly truth.
Arthur Weasley and his sons in the Ministry’s service resigned, so did many others who believed Draco, while Dumbledore refused to be in the same room as those who had prompted Harry’s suicide, and forbade them from the grounds of Hogwarts. Both Sirius and Severus had to swallow several flasks of the latter’s concoctions before the others were assured that the two would not try to murder those same people. Severus was insanely angry for the condition of his godson Draco, Sirius, for the loss of his.
It became a silent agreement for the two rivals, and they drank together till they could drink no more. Then Draco had swept silently into the room, cast a spell so soft no one heard it, and carried his drunken godfather back to his chambers at Hogwarts. No one saw him cry, no one at all, and Remus was almost sure that Draco had gone insane when he had heard howls like his own at the full moon that were raised above the storm the night before and knew that the blond had finally broken.
Hermione and Ron were staying over at his and Sirius’s house at Godric’s Hollow, built on the very same foundation James and Lily’s was, looking after Draco with the two men. They had come to like that boy when they found out that Harry was in love with him, and very generously accepted him into their circle. His parents were both gone now, after that dreaded kiss sucked them dry. He knew about it, but Remus doubted if he cared at all. He had, after all, been living in an apartment in downtown London with Harry ever since graduation.
Draco was now one of the richest wizards in England, but it was apparent that if left alone, he would die. Sirius’s offer to take him in was not shocking. Draco probably loved Harry more than he did.
The boy lived off potions Severus prepared for him, which nourished and provided what essentials he needed without having to take food. Also, he only took it with Sirius pinning his hands behind him, Remus pinching his nose, and when he opened his mouth to breathe, Severus would force it down his throat. There would always be a heavy sleeping draught in it, and as he swallowed the last drop, he would fall forward into Severus’s arms, fast asleep with tears in his eyes. It happened at least three times a week, and in the doorway of the room, Hermione would weep into her husband’s shoulder as the red-haired man looked on and shook his head sadly.
Remus watched as Hermione descended the stairs, and he saw the toll that both the war and the night before had taken on her. A permanent frown and line of worry had found a place on her forehead, the laughing one that used to be etched on her skin near her mouth had faded into nothingness, and her eyes, the windows to her soul, were permanently red, sometimes from crying, sometimes from lack of sleep, but most of it, from both. From the looks of it she had heard Draco too.
‘Good Morning Hermione. There’s coffee in the kitchen.’
She nodded and turned away, then paused and asked quietly, ‘He’s alright?’
‘I very highly doubt so Hermione. I don’t think he ever will be.’ His voice was heavy and tragically truthful. He heard her sigh as she made her way to the kitchen, and heard another door open upstairs. He half-expected to see Ron coming down the stairs, but was not surprised that it was a pair of black Gucci boots that appeared at the top of the stairs.
Draco walked down the stairs carefully, dressed in a clean white t-shirt and a pair of black Armani jeans. He hardly wore any other colour after Harry’s death, and no one opposed to it. Under different circumstances, Draco would know and brag about how good he looked in those two tones of dark and light, and Harry would be there to jeer and laugh at him.
But he was not there now, and Draco found no reason to do anything anymore. He was wondering why he had even got out of bed, and why he even bothered to change his clothes, but when he reached the landing, he mechanically headed for the front door. As he pulled his black muggle jacket around himself, he turned to see Remus staring at him fixatedly, Sirius asleep in his arms. He nodded at him, and without waiting for a response, turned and left with the swish of expensive fabric.
For nights he had dreamt nightmares, Harry appearing in every one. They used to be dreams, and he knew that they made him moan in his sleep. He would then wake and see Harry beside him, his warmth comforting, his eyes reassuring. Then Harry would take him, just as his dream-counterpart did, and Draco would fall asleep again in his arms, contented and loved. And just as that reality became a mere memory, the dreams became nightmares, cruel reminders which added to Draco’s sorrow.
Last night, after he had screamed himself hoarse into the raging storm, after his body had collapsed in exhaustion, after the darkness had taken him in, Draco had silently questioned it.
‘Did you hear me Harry?’
And no answer came. No dream, no nightmare. Nothing.
Kingcross Station. Noisy and loud, Draco thought, as he sat himself on a bench where he could watch as the people came and go. He had apparated to the railway station, and was watching people as they hurried on with their lives, jostling each other, hurrying home to be with their loved ones for their Christmas dinner. Draco may have been ignorant, but waking with presents on the floor, a Christmas tree in the living room and Christmas cards flooding the mail were more than enough to tell him what time of the year it was.
He had chosen not to say anything at all for the past weeks, and he knew that it was driving everyone mad, but he found that he did not care. Harry was gone, that light in his life, that second soul he had, and there was nothing to care for any longer.
Draco eyes gently shut as he asked his question a second time, and waited for an answer, listening to hoarse shouts and babies crying, the noisy muggles of London. Harry used to sit with him and together they would listen to the world, hand in hand, eyes closed and hearts beating as one.
He released a breath he did not know he was holding, remembering that look of terror on eleven-year-old Harry’s face when he could not find the right platform. Draco had slunk into a corner and watched with detached amusement as the raven-haired boy glanced around him wildly for help and was about to step forward to offer it when the Weasleys appeared.
He scowled unconsciously and then, lifted above the racket, Draco heard, through the soft melodious voice of a woman, a song. The melody was haunting, and so sad.
I'm so tired of being here
Suppressed by all my childish fears
That familiar pang of despair was returning to him, and Draco leant forward, pressing the heel of his hands into his eyes.
And if you have to leave
I wish that you would just leave
Cause your presence still lingers here
and it won't leave me alone
He felt the tears before they came, and let them slide down his cheeks silently. How very fitting, Draco thought, meaning for it to be sarcastic but not being able to. Then he wished for a moment, as he had wished that Harry would return to him somehow, that he could sing this song to Harry.
These wounds won't seem to heal,
This pain is just too real,
There's just too much that time cannot erase,
He strained to hear the rest of the song, but another train had arrived, and the soft sounds from the muggle radio at the newspaper stand were overwhelmed. Draco sat a while longer, eyes still closed, his heart longing for those gentle piano notes he had just heard, then stood abruptly and disapparated.
Hermione was screeching by now. So was Molly and Ginny. They were pacing the room and obviously not taking this well.
‘Maybe he just got lost…’ Arthur Weasley squirmed uncomfortably as his wife continued her frantic pacing and wringing of her hands.
‘Maybe he forgot to buy presents and went to get them.’ Fred offered brightly with a false smile. No one could truly smile now, not even any one of the Weasley twins.
‘Maybe he just didn’t want to come.’ Severus’s head had appeared in the fireplace of the Weasleys’ living room, and was looking quite upset.
‘Why wouldn’t he Severus? It’s Christmas, for Merlin’s sake!’ Sirius threw his hands up in despair and got up from the floor where he had been sitting. ‘You should never have let him leave, Moony!’
‘Professor Snape is right, Sirius. Don’t you remember?’ Hermione had sunk into the couch next to Ron, who was holding her gently.
‘Of course I remember! Have you all gone daft? Remember that it’s FUCKING Christmas!’
Remus coughed and looked up at the angry man, then it sunk in. Sirius fell silent. ‘Let’s have our Christmas dinner. Won’t you join us, Severus?’
‘I think I’d do that, Black.’ With that, Severus stepped out of the fire, and dusting himself off, joined the others as they headed to kitchen.
On Christmas day exactly three years ago, Harry had brought Draco to the Burrow for the first Christmas after graduation, much to Ron’s disgust and everyone’s shock. No one dared to object, since they all had not seen Harry since he arrived back in London in that last Hogwarts Express. He promised to write, told Hermione and Ron that he would settle his own housing and board, that he would go the Burrow for Christmas and disapparated.
At that time they all thought that Harry had finally come to find a friend in Draco, who was working as Harry’s partnered Unspeakable in the Ministry. All aurors had to pair up with one of those for help in research in the Dark Arts, and despite his mark, Draco’s betrayal to the Death Eaters was quite well-known. He had killed at least ten of his comrades for no apparent reason at all, placing himself in great peril, since he did so at Voldermort’s headquarters itself. Precious few knew the reason, and of how he had emerged unscathed, pledging allegiance to the side of the Light. Harry was one of them.
No one quite trusted Draco yet, but they were warming to him, gullible to his charming personality, especially the ladies. Then Harry had to go and ruin everything by pulling Draco with him to be under the mistletoe, a mischievous glint in his eye, and kissing him thoroughly. He then turned around, cheeks flushed and lips red, and confessed his love for the blond to everyone.
He later sat down, fingers entwined with Draco’s, and explained that Draco’s escapade had been planned by Dumbledore, Snape and himself, even months before graduation, and told that second family he had about how Draco was their spy, and the number of conspiracies he had uncovered. He was Voldermort’s second-in-command, and told the unsuspecting wizard that a spy was in the ranks, letting that suspicion Voldermort held at everyone become his cover. When discovered, Draco killed everyone he could, then apparated into the arms of Harry before Voldermort could return from a wild-goose chase Draco had set him on.
They were stunned and disbelieving at first, but when Harry reached into his pocket and pulled out the silver band that was to be Draco’s gift, everyone saw that fire of love which burned in his green eyes, making them shine an unearthly emerald.
Hermione and Ron’s eyes dawned into comprehension as they realized that the ring Harry and them both had so carefully chosen was meant for their arch rival. Harry had sent them catalogues of rings, loads and loads of them, some designs circled and others crossed. They came to agree on that one design through Hedwig and her master’s correspondence. They knew it was for his beau, but him? How could they not have seen it? The serpent was more than a hint, the diamond for its eye told the whole truth. Carved on the ring’s front, it was Draco. In a way.
He had slipped the ring onto one of those beautifully long fingers on Draco’s right hand, then leaned forward and kissed him again. Draco did not say anything, and kissed him back, his grey eyes sparkling like the serpent’s did. His gift to Harry was, no doubt, just as expensive. A silver ring as well, with a matted finish, plain and simple. It’s dented, Harry noticed, but did not care. When it was slipped on, there was a blinding light, and as it faded, Draco found himself at the wand end of at least five people.
He had kept his silver eyes on Harry, as did everyone, but did not flinch, as the rest of them did, when a loud laugh of joy and surprise escaped Harry’s mouth. His pale lips merely parted in a breath-taking smile. The others watched in stunned silence as Harry continued to laugh, looking at the ring on his finger, wincing at the sound they had expected to be a scream of some sort. Then, as suddenly as he started, he stopped.
‘Well?’ That elegant voice cut through the taut silence that had found its place in the Burrow’s living room. Those without their wands out slowly dropped the wrappers of presents they were holding and turned to pay more attention to the couple and the raised wands. Hermione suddenly shrieked, as if she had finally realized something and fell to her knees.
Wand still held up, Ron was torn between wanting to ask if the ring had robbed Harry of his sensibilities and wanting to see what had gone wrong with his girlfriend when a lump of both pale and tan skin with blond and black hair fell to the floor with a yell.
The wands followed the movements but were lowered when Harry emerged and sat on Draco’s stomach, his hands pressed against Draco’s heaving chest. His glasses were gone, abandoned on the carpet, and Draco could see those beautiful green eyes, filled with a colour he had never seen, with nothing shielding that glare of love that fell from it.
He almost closed his eyes, not sure if they held the same sort of light Harry’s did, not sure if they deserved what they saw. He could not blink, despite wanting to, and as that same fear began to show in those green orbs, Draco understood that Harry was thinking and fearing the exact same thing. Then the other boy leaned down, until his cheek was next to his own, and whispered, lips brushing against his ear.
A loud and single cheer rang about the house. Hermione was crying as she cheered, tears in her eyes and arms around Ron’s neck. Everyone stared in disbelief as Draco sat up, pushing Harry away from him, until they both sat a distance from each other on the warm floor.
‘Really?’ His voice was quiet, the arrogant drawl quite absent. Harry just smiled. Another cheer shook the Burrow that night, and the Weasleys, Sirius, Remus, Tonks and Hermione watched as Draco threw himself at Harry this time, pulling him up by the collar of his shirt, kissing him savagely. Slowly, answers came to those questioning eyes, and more cheers broke out, amidst regretful moans from Ron and Sirius. Remus laughed at their response.
Draco had given Harry an âme feminine. A ring that was exclusive to the French, and very, very precious. Draco, with his Veela ancestry and Malfoy fortune, had managed to acquire one and as he held Harry in his arms, Hermione explained the full properties of the ring to all who would listen.
‘It is wrought from golden silver, a silver found deep in the earth mingling with molten lava and gold. And did you know, the material the ring is made of is enough to pay the house-elves at Hogwarts at least five galleons each a month for ten years?’ Ron, Harry and Draco smirked.
Willing herself to ignore them, Hermione continued. ‘The French, hopeless romantics as they were, used this metal’s magical properties to cast rings they gave to their lovers,’ Draco had begun kissing Harry. ‘Part of their souls poured into it as they forged them, all of their love set into its design. They had to forge it themselves,’ and at this Harry squeezed Draco harder. Holding up Harry’s hand, Draco studied his work.
‘I’m not much a blacksmith, as you can see.’
‘’s not as if I care.’
The two had broke off into a world of their own, Hermione’s voice drowning into the room’s background as the couple’s gazes came to focus on only each other. They moved into the wintry garden and were sitting, in each others arms, on the creaking garden swing.
‘You do know what this means, do you? Accepting this? Or do you want to let Hermione finish the lecture?’
‘Did you think that I would do otherwise?’ Harry’s voice was laced with hurt. Draco was not sure of Harry’s love for him, and this was somewhat upsetting.
How could he not know?, Harry questioned as he soothed the skin on Draco’s cheek. How could he not know that he is all I live for, all I love? He saw Draco’s bottom lip quiver, and held his thumb over it, willing him to stop. He did, and as he turned to face Harry, he smiled weakly.
‘No Harry, I did not.’
‘I’ll ask you again, you know what it means, now that you’ve accepted the ring?’
‘Yes. And as proof…’ Harry picked up the hand with the serpent snake on it, and triggered the magic he had so carefully charmed it to hold. There was another flash of that same blinding light, only this time, it was Draco who started laughing into the night.
‘You sneaky bastard! Who woulda’ thought…’ he was silenced with a kiss from Harry, and they broke off when there were shouts from behind them. They both broke off to see what the commotion was, and saw that they were the cause of it. Everyone was standing at the backdoor of the Burrow, watching them with wolfish smiles and the warmth and light from inside casting a soft glow to their bodies. Fred and George were whistling, their parents were in each others’ arms and Ron was kissing Hermione. The others just watched fondly, as Sirius retched and Remus smacked him on his head.
Later that night, before Hermione quietly closed the door to the room Draco and Harry was going to share for the night, she had asked that same question the couple already had answers to.
‘You both know what this means, don’t you?’
‘If I didn’t know better, I’d say you are not very happy about this arrangement Granger.’
‘Shut up. Don’t worry ‘Mione, we know what we’re doing.’
‘You bet we do. Wanna stay and watch? Ow!'
Later, the two fell asleep in each others’ arms, and, as they had promised each other with their rings, soul-mates.
And what laid beyond.
Draco was silent as he entered the muggle record store, his head clear as the song continued to ring in his head. He could not give the shopkeeper the title of the song or the name of its singer, so he was rather thankful when he noticed the old piano which stood at the back, dusty and part of the décor.
‘No one’s touched that bloody thing in years. I don’t even dare to go near and you want to play it?’
‘I need to hear that piece of music again. Will you let me?’
And so, the young, freckled brunette was subjected to the most beautiful opening of ‘My Immortal’ he had ever heard for half a minute, by the most beautiful man he had ever seen, and stood gaping as Draco turned back to him.
Draco loved the piano. It was his favourite instrument, though the sounds he made Harry make were the far most satisfying and beautiful. When Harry had heard him play for the first time, he could not move from his spot, which was rather uncomfortable for Draco since he had his arms around him and his lips were at the back of his neck. His father was a violinist, and hated the piano with a passion for a reason his mother never told him.
Because of his respect and admiration for his father, Draco learnt to play the violin as well. And the flute, and the cello, hell, even the drums. He yearned for the piano though, that grand instrument he watched a house-elf play during one of his father’s grand parties, and for the beautiful sounds it made. When he found one in a hidden room at Hogwarts, he could not resist, and taught himself to play it, ordering capable house-elves at the school to aid him.
I like the title, Draco thought, and he returned to the bustling street, heading for Bang and Olufsen’s. He returned to the house at Godric’s Hollow and napped for a whole hour before heading out again. The day’s exertions were hard on him, as he had not done much for the past weeks except trying to relive his dreams and those last moments with his love. He had no idea to what spurred him to come out of it that day, and was too tired to think why. His heart called for it and he simply answered.
Transfiguring the new hi-fi system he had bought and the Cd, as muggles called it, into a lighter and a jack knife, he headed for Harry.
Draco charmed the system, allowing it to run on its own without the aid of electricity, as he sat down next to the bouquet of roses he had brought. He then allowed the Cd to play, putting that same song on repeat, and leaned back on the stone behind him as he watched the sunset. He relaxed as those familiar notes came to him again. He listened as it went on from where it had stopped earlier.
When you cried I'd wipe away all of your tears,
When you'd scream I’d fight away all of your fears,
and I held your hand through all of these years,
But you still… have… all of me,
His mind began to wander, having heard those words of the song, thinking maybe Harry was the one singing it to him. And he closed his eyes as the rest of the gentle music slipped out of his grasp, and remembered.
He remembered, returning to their flat, body bruised and broken, after Voldermort had raped him. Draco remembered himself flinching away from everything that touched him, and as Harry made a move to hold him, he nearly shouted at Harry to stay away. He did not want to flinch at Harry, did not want to see the hurt, but knew that his body would react, whether he meant it to or not.
Then he sensed a warmth around his neck, from Harry’s ring on the chain he wore (it was dangerous to wear it on his hand around the dark lord) and felt his fear and terror seep from the cuts on his skin, in the blood that continued to flow. The nearer Harry came, the more he felt at peace, and was barely conscious, wrapped in warmth, when Harry cried and touched his shaking hand to Draco’s wounds.
He was lowered into a tub of hot water and sweet smelling herbs, and he fell into darkness as Harry washed him, purging him of the filth, the dirty blood and stinking sweat that shone in a sheen off his pale skin. He remembered waking in their warm bed, feeling strangely cold, and realized that Harry was kneeling on the floor by the bed, his face pressed against Draco’s chest, his tears wetting the sheets and the front of Draco t-shirt.
He looked up at Draco as he woke, muttering and whispering words Draco was too tired to hear, and was pulled under the covers to join the shivering blond. Harry held him close, until the shivering subsided and his breathing evened out. Then he fell into a fitful sleep himself.
Things worked out rather well, but Draco jumped at almost everything and relaxed only when Harry touched and reassured him. This went on for a week, and Draco, with all that pain he had endured before, recovered quickly from both the physical and emotional wounds, with Harry as his pillar of strength.
Then, a year after that night of horror, Draco had woke, screaming, his arms flailing and tangling the sheets, his legs kicking an invisible foe, and his eyes tearing, in the wee hours of that morning. He had felt those same, foreign hands intruding him, violating him again as he slept. Harry held him close and promised him that all was well, that he was there and always would be. That promise was broken of course, but Harry did apologise for it. Not that Draco forgave him.
The day that came on proved to be filled with paranoia for Draco, and he nearly pulled his hair out when Harry had to go out to buy lunch for both of them. He decided to stay in bed until Harry’s return, and was startled when there was a loud knocking on the door only minutes after Harry had left. He had left the pleasant warmth of the bed to open the door, thinking that maybe Harry had forgotten something, and nearly fell over in shock when he saw nearly the whole of the Burrow standing at their door.
His immediate response was to move backwards, causing the happy smiles his visitors wore to turn into frowns and their greetings, into angry questionings. Moving back still, Draco fell over the coffee table, breaking the glass table top with his head. The buzz that came from Hermione and Ginny’s mouths became a loud thudding beat as they raised their voices, joined by the Weasley twins and Harry’s godparents (Sirius had married Remus). He was vaguely aware of himself as he curled into a fetal position, pleading for them to stay away from him, and soon a mantra fell from his lips, over and over it swam in his head.
‘No…please no…Harry, Harry…’ his note was pleading, and he flinched very, very violently when someone touched him. He noticed that blood was pooling at his ankles and under different circumstances, would have touched his hand to the back of his head and see the blood and feel the pain there. But now he was afraid, very afraid, and his hands were clutching Harry’s ring (on his finger now) his knees drawn to his chest. Then, like it did a year ago, warmth came from the piece of jewelry, and he managed to look up weakly to see a savagely cursing and very angry Harry Potter bursting in through the door. A flash of red from behind showed that his best friend was following behind rather fearfully.
The others watched as Harry, whom they were sure Draco had murdered (thus the fearful greeting), stalked over, roughly pushing anyone in his way and gather the trembling, bloody form on his living room floor into his arms. They saw how Draco’s tensed body relaxed, even as Harry drew near, and realized that the blond had been having a panic attack, recovering only when Harry was there to sooth him.
But they were not Draco, and they did not feel that rush of relief, that calming and joy which nearly choked him when he saw Harry’s sparkling green eyes looking deep into his own, had not heard the whispers Harry murmured into his ear, had not felt his smoothing caresses. They knew nothing about what he had gone through and knew even less of how deep Harry’s love for him went.
Harry had then carried his lover to their room, allowing Hermione to bandage and heal the wounds he had sustained from the broken glass at the back of his head and on his hands, cursing and scolding at her back. He did not notice that she had begun crying in her own fear.
It was supposed to be a surprise party for Ron and Hermione’s engagement, and quite fortunately, Ron had decided to go to the shop around the corner for a second bottle of wine, and spotted Harry choosing from three different types of cheese. After a few surprised greetings, a loud, strangled, ‘WHAT?’, and an impossible amount of flying Chinese take-away, Ron had watched Harry race from the shop at the speed of a bat from hell.
Draco pressed his already-closed eye lids tighter together. Again, those irrepressible tears were coming and he willed himself to focus on the song.
You used to captivate me
by your resonating light
Now I’m bound by the life you left behind
your face it haunts
my once pleasant dreams
your voice it chased away
all the sanity in me
Draco thought of the days ahead, of the empty flat that now awaited his return and shuddered.
‘What would I do without you?’ Draco sighed, kissing Harry’s ring-finger.
‘Don’t even dream about it. I am here to stay.’ He answered with a mock-seriousness, and the two doubled over in each others’ arms into the soft couch. Then, silence fell as they each caught the other’s gaze.
‘How can I have dreams if I am living in one?’ the words fell softly, and Harry knew that Draco meant it.
Still, the question remained unanswered, and this time, Draco could not handle the brutal truth he was facing. Draco wanted to shout. His heart was screaming in pain, and that drug that usually curbed it, that pain-killer that always numbed it, was gone itself, and Draco Malfoy heard himself gasping, clutching at his chest in pain for the first time in his life. He was choking on his tears and he knew it, but before he lost his consciousness, Draco felt that warmth from his ring and tumbled into the black almost willingly.
He opened his eyes to black again, but he realized that he was no longer at the cemetery. His knees were still pulled under his chin, his arms wrapped around his legs, but he found that the air was stifling and he was in some sort of closet. The lights began to adjust, and beyond the door his nose was inches away from, Draco heard loud and blaring Christmas music, its rhythm pulsating and bouncing off the outside of the door. A bright shaft of light came from the tiny gap between it and the floor, through which the aroma of rich-smelling foods was wafting in by.
Something moved beside him, and he saw another figure, huddled like himself, only much smaller, with a tuft of dark coloured hair. For some reason, there was a child, locked away like some cast-away or prisoner, kept from the warmth of the party in that inky blackness and icy cold of that small closet, with a ceiling so low Draco did not believe would accommodate him. He sneezed from the dust, and knew, somehow, that in that alternate universe he had just entered, its occupants could not hear or sense him. Still, the boy beside him stirred and shifted, allowing some of the little light the room had to be cast on his youngish face. Draco stared.
He thought he was looking at Harry again, but this child could not have been older than five years. He glanced around, and remembered his love being claustrophobic, remembered how Harry had shouted when Hermione locked them both in a dark broom closet, in an effort to let them have ‘some time together’. Draco had been shocked when he felt Harry’s trembling form and soothed him, and now, he saw the cause of it.
Harry never spoke much about his life in the Dursleys, and Draco did not push it. So this is what they made him go through, Draco thought, looking around himself again, it’s not as bad as what I had, but, oh Harry. He reached out his hand, pale and white, for the trembling child, but before he made contact, that tiny Harry looked up, and Draco shrank back.
His eyes were not like Draco remembered. They were a pale green, not like the shining emeralds he was so used to seeing. In them Draco saw fear and loneliness that mirrored his own when he was a child, and he felt himself tumbling forward into that ugly shade of his favourite colour, into that look that held no hope or happiness, into those eyes that were resigned to their owners’ fate.
Draco blinked, but that shade of green was still before him. That shade of green, green grass in the midst of winter. He was no longer in that cupboard under the stairs, he knew it, and could smell the dry grass and melting snow. Draco found that he was lying face-down, on the quidditch pitch back at Hogwarts, and clumsily stood up to brush off his robes. He gasped.
There was Harry, in his scarlet quiddditch robes, graceful on his firebolt as he tumbled around in the sky at the speed of a blur. He was onto the snitch now, and a shout from beside Draco let him know that Ron and Hermione were the only ones watching the spectacle. At least, in their frame of time.
‘C’mon Harry, I want to go back and open our presents together!’ Weasley was shouting.
‘Yeah, come ON Harry.’ Granger.
Then there was a yell of triumph, and as the Gryffindor quidditch captain made laps around the pitch, waving to an invisible crowd, Draco wanted to cry, while Ron and Hermione laughed. Harry landed in front of him, and again, Draco reached for him. Then Harry turned and looked his way, and still Draco could not see the emerald he longed for. His eyes were now a lush green, like leaves in spring, but that beautiful colour he longed to see was not there.
Once again, Draco was drawn into those eyes, and as he blinked he found that he was still there, on the pitch, but the occasion was different. That green he was lost in became the colour of a hedge, and it was nightfall now. There were frantic shouts and pushing people all about him, and a glint of gold caught his eye when he turned around. Oh no, not this, Draco thought. Lying on the floor just a few feet ahead of him was Cedric Diggory, his eyes wide and glassy, simpering with a green from the aftermath of the death curse.
Clutching his left hand was Harry’s right, doing so in an almost desperate gesture. Harry’s other hand held the Triwizard Cup, and it was trembling. Draco walked slowly to the other side to see his face and nearly fell to his knees. His eyes were open and glassy as well, and for a fleeting instant Draco thought he was dead. Then he remembered that it was not possible and saw a trickle of tears from those dark, dark eyes.
Harry’s eyes were black, a green darkened into a shade that, in the soft starlight, looked so impenetrable. Draco was pulled into it nonetheless, as tears filled his own. He blinked, and he knew that he was part of next memory. He was still looking into black, a blindfold tight around his head. There was laughter around him, the scent of butterbeer, peppermint and…Harry, thought Draco, hung in the air. There was a jab at his ribs, and he stumbled, causing more laughter to erupt.
There was a brush of lips at the back of his neck, and this was his cue. He spun around and wrapped his arms around the warm figure of Harry, roughly kissing the image he could not see. There was even more laughter when Draco ripped off the cloth that covered his eyes and saw that he was kissing the air. There was confusion in his eyes before he remembered the invisibility cloak, and sought to pull them off for the treasure they hid.
His breath was caught when two shining orbs of green looked into his own silver ones, and laughed as he felt those strong arms around him again. He lost himself in those eyes he had been looking for, almost willingly, but regretted blinking half a second later.
Draco was still looking into those emerald eyes, but it was Harry in his arms, his face dirty with grime and blood shining on his lips. Draco could not hold back and began to cry again, as he did before, and felt that touch which wiped them away.
‘Don’t mind the cliché, but I love you, Malfoy.’
No, no. Draco would not be able to live through this again.
‘And I love you, Potter.’ A voice he was sure was not his own.
He closed his eyes then, waiting for the sigh to come, for it all to end.
‘Why are you closing your eyes?’
Draco’s eyes snapped open, and he saw Harry looking up at him.
Harry smiled then. It was a gentle smile, lighting up his already-gleaming eyes, breaking the crust of dried blood on his lips as he curled them. Then he spoke.
‘Hey there love.’ Harry said, as if he was looking at Draco for the first time.
‘Har-harry?’ That Harry in Draco’s arms was pushing himself to sit up, and as he did, he leant forward to kiss Draco, long and hard, desperately and hungrily. His passion was matched by Draco, and when they finally broke off, Harry was crying too.
‘I missed you so much, love….so much.’
‘I heard you, you know.’
‘I heard you, down at Godric’s Hollow last night.’
A pregnant pause.
‘I’m so sorry, love. I never meant to leave you like this I sw-’.
Harry was silenced by a kiss, one that was more forceful than anything Draco ever gave him.
‘Is this meant to be a closure for me?’
‘It won’t work Harry. Nothing is going to change.’ So true, so sad, those bare whispers of Draco’s.
‘NO!’ The shout is fierce, like most of Draco’s shouts. ‘I won’t let you go again! I won’t, hell no, I won’t…’ He ends in a whimper, those rare, rare whimpers which Harry seldom heard.
This time Harry is there to hold him while he sobbed, their tears mingling as the lovers clutched at each other, unwilling to let go.
‘I’ll come with you.’ Slurred.
‘You heard me Potter.’
‘And how exactly are you going to do that, Malfoy?’ Almost teasing.
‘I have my ways, but you can help me.’ So serious.
Harry pushed Draco away at this, angry.
‘What do you mean?’ Oh, those pretty green eyes. Tears make them shine, anger makes them dance.
‘Take me with you with when you go.’
‘You think I will?’
‘If I didn’t know better Harry, I’d think you don’t want me with you.’ Sad, oh, so sad.
A punch made contact home and a jaw cracked. Then silence.
‘Goodbye, Draco love. I think I’ll wait.’ So soft, this goodbye.
Draco saw stars. It was the first thing that swam before him when he was hit. He blinked, and the stars became more focused. He was back at the cemetery again. There were tears, of course, and he could still taste Harry. He sat up and looked at the cold stone beside him.
I've tried so hard to tell myself that you're gone
but though you're still with me
I've been alone all along
‘I said I have my ways Harry.’
And as the heavens stood witness, a young boy, in scarlet quidditch robes with his black ruffled hair and startling green eyes tossed his beloved broom onto the spring green grass, and ran. He ran, and ran, until he had another boy in his arms. Another boy, with silver-gold hair and stormy grey eyes. And as the two met in an embrace, the greens and greys burst into clouds of emerald and silver, like they were supposed to be.
They held hands, as they watched Sirius quietly lift up Draco’s lifeless body, wrist slit by the thorn of a rose, and walked down the hill, his back to the sunrise. As his shadow faded away, so did the charm on the music, and the darkness that caped the cemetery.
Before the silence took them, one of the two held the other closer, and whispering in his ear, promised that he would never leave again. Ever.
and I held your hand through all of these years
But you still… have… all of me
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