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No Greater Victory

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November 28th, 1998
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry


Dear Harry,

I don’t know what I can possibly say to rectify the harm I’ve caused you.

The truth is, being with you is the only time I’ve ever been happy.

My whole life has been one competition after another – to be the best student, the best Slytherin, the best killer, the best sycophant, the best rehabilitated Death Eater. I’d never considered happiness before you; it was always the need to win. To control. And now I’ve succeeded in something at last and find I regret it more than every one of my failures combined, because I’ve succeeded in hurting the first person I've ever loved.

I’m so sorry, Harry. More sorry than I’ll ever be able to tell you.

I know you believe in love and forgiveness. I know, too, that there’s a difference between forgiving someone for who they are and forgiving them for what they’ve done. What I’ve done. I know I’ve no right to ask, but you’ve shown me that living with love is something worth fighting for and I don’t want to live without it ever again. Without you.

My journal is enclosed. I’d long considered this sordid collection of my machinations to be something of a trophy; all the things I’ve done since the start of the term are contained in its pages. Please, if you ever cared for me - if what we've had means as much to you as it has to me - please read it. I owe you so much more than this, but hope, at least, that there might be no more lies between us. At least I might try to show you why I've hurt you, and how deeply I regret it.

Please give me another chance. I’m miserable without you.

Draco

 

 

 

* * *




September 1st, Hogwarts Express

Blaise is off to – joy of joys – the year’s first meeting of the Slug Club, going to rub elbows with precious Saint Potter and his ilk. He leaves Goyle, Nott, and Pansy as my only companions. No need to wait for today’s entry, seeing as one can’t read, one won’t stop reading, and the last is preoccupied with figuring out how to drape school robes to her best advantage.

And bragging, of course. She natters on endlessly these days. Today it’s about Finch-Fletchley, as though that’s anything special. Rode him till he popped, etc. etc., Very impressive; no one’s ever fucked Finch-Fletchley before. And no one’s ever fucked Pansy before, unless you count the entirety of Slytherin house and, at this point, half the members of Dumbledore’s Army. How she keeps it a secret I’ll never know, but her strategy is painfully obvious: she’s got spectacular tits and no reservations about using them, or that stupid charm she’s got wedged between them.

Why that ostentations Hallows replica gets her any credibility I’ll never know. Except, of course, I do; they’re all too foolish, too swept up in their saviour’s epic heroism, to think twice about it. Of course Pansy would fall sincerely at Potter’s feet like the rest of these idiots. Of course it’s not for show.

Never mind that the edges of the charm dig into her tits just so, making it near impossible not to imagine what it’s like to sink one’s teeth into that curved, supple flesh.

Never mind that she knows it.

Never mind that she tried to give Potter up, and would’ve gladly consigned us all to a Dark regime in the process.

Never mind that it’s full of ground unicorn horn, and if she got Finch-Fletchley up her twat it’s only because she got that up his nose.

Though it hardly stops her going on about it. “When’s the last time you had a cock that big, Draco?” “If he’s such a slut, why didn’t he go for you, Draco?” “You’re just a toy I like to play with; he’s a hero. Really, Draco.” “Do you really think anyone on the side of the light is going to touch you, Draco?”

Bitch.

Of course, I have pulled recently. Not with any member of Dumbledore’s godforsaken Army, but with a level of skill that would do Salazar proud. However, this sort of thing requires discretion, and Pans can’t keep her mouth any more shut than her legs.

Not that the pages of The Quibbler are especially discrete, but then, that is the point. And until it goes to press I’ll enjoy the anticipation enough for Pansy and I both. Even if it must remain a secret, since they certainly weren’t going to publish anything by Draco Malfoy.

Cora Floydam, vampire chaser, on the other hand…they gladly bought the photos from her, as well as the line. “The vampire would only pose for photos under the pretense that it was a glamour shoot for a Muggle lad mag. They had to be nudes, or I never would’ve recorded the specimen’s natural mating behaviour.”

In actuality, of course, it’s the Ministry-appointed Mind-Healer’s daughter. Dumb as bricks – shocked she made it into Beauxbatons’ N.E.W.T.’s program – but exactly the kind of oral fixation you’d associate with her mother’s line of work. Given what the practice was charging, their pockets must be as deep as her throat. Which probably explains Beauxbatons, come to think of it.

In any event, she’s off to the continent and there’s no way she or her mother will see the photos until they’re in wide circulation. Cora Floydam will prove impossible to find should they attempt it. Besides which, the story’s not even wholly untrue; they were trying to bleed us dry.

It may’ve been Ministry-mandated, but that’s hardly an excuse for price gouging.

Fortunately, they’re all deluded enough to believe going back to Hogwarts will have the desired effects. Reintegration, adjustment to post-war society, blah, blah, blah. It’s so much Hippogriff shit, of course.

I will say this for Pansy, though. While Blaise is off rubbing elbows with the victors and Goyle’s trying to remember his own name and the other eighth years are busy pretending we don’t exist, she’s far less deluded than most about what it will take to regain our place in this world. Her name may only have been slightly less tarnished than mine, but she seems to be climbing out of that hole one fuck at a time, and if she’s willing to take me with her so much the better.

And when a girl’s tits can look that good even in standard issue school robes…well.




September 18th, North Tower Common Room

It’s quiet as tombs in here, at fucking last. Putting the eighth years in our own tower might’ve seemed like a bright idea, but it’s just a different sort of battle. The Ravenclaws demand constant silence in the interest of making the most of the “unprecedented academic opportunity” to retake courses they’ve already taken and have threatened to block off their corridor. Even if the idea of treating the common room like the library wasn’t patently absurd Finnigan’s propensity for explosions, Weasley’s insistence on nightly games of Wizard’s Chess, and Pansy’s determination to loudly faux-console every marginally disgruntled witch or wizard in sight would make silence impossible. The Hufflepuffs spend most of their time hovering nervously at the edges of conflict. Granger and Nott are about ready to defect to the Ravenclaw faction. Every evening ends in an eruption of one sort or another. Potter may have arrived at the only sensible solution: frequent trips to the Quidditch pitch that keep him well out of the Common Room until things die down.

I’ve found the time moves much more quickly, and conflict is effectively sidestepped, by making full and proper use of our private bedrooms. That may be the best thing to come out of this all. Especially since Pansy’s tits aren’t just for show, and having my cock down her throat does shut her up well enough. School is rather a different experience when you’re of age. And not in the middle of a war.

While I’ve normally got to keep my goings-on to the bedroom, the eighth years are allowed to leave at the weekends. Provided we’re not on probation, in which case outings require Ministry approval, only granted for familial visitation and good works. This particular weekend has everyone occupied elsewhere, save yours truly, which leaves me with the whole tower to myself.

Not that I’m wholly without options. Blaise is off to his mother’s new townhouse in London, Pansy’s at the Parkinson estate, and their mothers do both love to be charmed. However, the chance that either of those old witches would take it seriously induces more nausea than a glimpse at the gaggles of dewy-eyed Potter fans. And Pansy always flies into a bit of a snit when my attention is divided. My own mother is at the Chalet in the Alps while Father enjoys his favorite Parisian delicacies, but sitting through their attempts to play at one happy family without the rituals of the confiscated familial estate is as nightmarish as any actual nightmare.

Whereas here I can drink well, sleep soundly and, should the urge arise, fuck deeply. Speaking of which, had my own go at Finch-Fletchley in the Astronomy Tower last week. It was, at first, a matter of disproving Pansy’s arguments, but he really is insatiable. I had him begging without the use of unicorn parts, much to Pansy’s consternation. Could do with taking him over the back of the sofa, now it’s free. Or perhaps in the window, where Longbottom insists on growing those ridiculous, writhing vines. Wonder what would happen if I got his wrists into them.

Then there’s always Harper. One of the few proper Slytherins who knows to look up to his elders. Pansy’s had her eye on him and rumour has it he’s almost completely inexperienced. Nothing so sweet as a virgin arsehole, and Pans would be furious not to get there first. Casting a few aspersions between rounds would only be efficient, really. And she gets so lovely and flushed and fuckable when she’s angry.

Yes, Harper will do nicely.




September 20th, North Tower Bedroom

Pansy is an insufferable twat. In she walks after a weekend away, just breezes right by, one arm linked through Anthony Goldstein’s, slowing just enough to issue a self-satisfied smirk in my direction. From the sound of Goldstein’s moaning it was a bit time-sensitive, but really.

The woman seems thoroughly convinced that spunk carries the secrets of moral rectitude. Having the members of Dumbledore’s Army come on your face is hardly the same as having joined in when it actually mattered. Never mind the absurdities she fairly screams at the door. “Oh, baby, your cock’s so big, you feel so good, oh, baby, baby, yes, that’s it, oooh, just wanna be covered in you, your cock’s so beautiful, oh, baby.”

Baby? More effective than a puking pastille.

She and I both know that’s not what she says when she means it. I’ve had her yelling all manner of obscenities and Goldstein’s more of a dunce than a hero if he doesn’t realise she’s more of an “on your knees,” “fuck me harder,” “if you come now I’ll slap your fucking face” kind of a girl.

Then she has the unmitigated gall to wander in here in a silk dressing robe, those tits of hers barely contained, still licking off a last drop of Goldstein’s come, as though I’m unaware of what she could do with that wicked tongue.

And then. Then the tart throws down a pile of magazines, perches on my desk, and directs me to cover of Witch Weekly’s October issue, hot off the presses.

It’s got Potter on the front cover, of course. Not exactly a surprise, considering they had him in May, him with Granger and Weaselby in June, him and Longbottom in July, and him with Krum and Delacour in September – “War Heroes, back to school!”— as though the other two did anything. Just a follow up to the break they took in August for Krum’s Quidditch World Cup feature.

That they made it a full four months before giving Potter another solo shot almost passes for an accomplishment these days. As does making Potter’s awkward, sheepish fumbling attempts at a pose into the kind of borderline attractive photograph the cover of a magazine demands.

Pansy’s body may have near-Veela allure, but when she’s not playing coy she’s got the voice of a banshee. “Read the cover, Draco.” Anything to shut her up.

Potter’s photo managed to look particularly sheepish this month, as though he doesn’t want to be the adored heartthrob of every witch on the planet.

Though the headline suggests that perhaps witches are not his quarry.

 

Exclusive: A Hero’s Heart
Harry Opens Up about Hogwarts, Hope, and his Newfound Homosexuality


I’ll admit to being momentarily taken aback, but no one can be truly at ease when Pansy’s got that “Kneazle that ate the Pygmy Puff” sort of look.

I would have asked her what of it, but she had it out of my hands and was reading aloud before I could get a word in edgewise. The article, if revolting, is slightly more palatable without Pansy’s dulcet tones:

Harry Potter, hero of the wizarding world, reveals to Witch Weekly’s own Anthea Derwent that there’s a new source of hope in his battle-scarred young life. That’s right, witches (and wizards!), our Harry’s found love at last!

Though many expected a reunion with the Weasley family’s youngest daughter Ginevra, Harry says his interests have taken an unexpected turn: towards a dashing young Wizard named Trevor.

In the interest of protecting their blossoming love affair, Harry has declined to share pictures or details, though he assures this reporter that he and Trevor enjoy long walks around Hogwarts’ Great Lake, moonlit picnics on the moors, and nights of food and fun around the fire with hot young couple Hermione Granger and Ronald Weasley.

He’s also agreed to share his thoughts on love – available in these pages only! – as a guest author in our monthly “Magical Lives” column. Turn to page 63 for more!

It only got worse, of course.

Loving thy Neighbour: Coming Clean and Loving Well in a Post-War World
by
Harry J. Potter
(with thanks to H.J. Granger)

I don’t think it will be much of a shock to anyone to hear that I usually shy away from talking too much about my personal life. It’s one thing to do these interviews to help the many families affected by the war – people like to call it heroic, but it’s really the least I can do for all of the people who helped defeat Voldemort. (ed. note – we hope our readers will excuse the name! It may be a shock for us, but it’s just one more reminder of the bravery that’s made Harry a national treasure and an international hero!) It’s another thing to talk about my own experiences this way. But if I’ve learned anything over the course of the last few years, it’s that when you believe in something you’ve got to be ready to stand up for it.

So I’m here, in part, to tell you directly that I’m gay. When you’ve spent a year of your life on the run already, the last thing you want to do is hide. We fought for a freer world and that includes the right to love who you want to love, regardless of their blood status or anything else about them, and I hope, now we’ve won the war, that we won’t forget what we were fighting for.

It was hard to see that goal sometimes during the war, for all of us. It’s easy to get scared and angry when the people you love are in danger. But if I learned anything from the war, it’s that we don’t win by hating; we win by fighting for love, by accepting those around us and treating them with the respect and dignity that we all deserve. By loving them. It’s what Albus Dumbledore believed, even though he’d had to sacrifice his own chance at love. It’s what gave Severus Snape the courage to work as a spy for the Order, even though it cost him his life. It’s what Sirius Black taught me, even though he’d had every reason to give up on it while falsely imprisoned in Azkaban and then on the run. It’s what the Weasley family has showed me, from my first day at Hogwarts to the last day of the war and beyond. It’s what my friends have shown me over and over again, whether we’re on the run from Death Eaters or enjoying a game of Quidditch. It’s what my parents died for; what saved my life more than once. Their love – the love of all of these people and many more – is the reason I’m alive today. The reason we can all live freely.

But I don’t think it’s enough to be grateful for love. We have to live our lives lovingly, to respect and forgive each other and find common ground, especially now that the war’s over. That’s part of why I’m supporting the Society for the Protection of Elvish Welfare (S.P.E.W.) (ed. note – see p. 33 for more on S.P.E.W. and how to support the cause!) and Minister Shacklebolt’s efforts to come to more equitable agreements with other magical creatures. It’s why I’m supporting the Department of International Magical Cooperation and Department of Magical Games and Sports’ International Field Day, which will bring students from wizarding schools across the globe together next summer for a series of non-competitive team-building exercise to strengthen the bonds between young wizarding communities worldwide. It’s also why, with my good friend Andromeda Tonks, I’m announcing the founding of Wizarding Orphans Loved by Family and Friends (W.O.L.F.F.) to help us make sure that the war’s youngest survivors have the love, support, and acceptance their parents were willing to die for.

And it’s why I’ve made the decision to be open about who I love. Love isn’t just about making new policies or writing articles like this one. It’s about taking the risk to open ourselves up. It’s about trusting that love is worth it. That having the chance to fall in love, to live openly in love, whether romantic or platonic, is as worth fighting for in times of peace as it was in time of war. Because what could be more worth it than a chance at love? And how can we move forward if – after all the risks we’ve taken – we can’t take one more chance?

Some of you might think that I’m only saying this because, as a reporter I recently met put it, I’m “a young man in love!” (ed. note – our Anthea does have a way with words! And this editor confirms that it’s entirely true. Harry just has that glow about him! See this month’s set of four Harry Potter covers for more!) But I’m not just talking about the kind of love that’s easy. It’s also about some kinds of love that are pretty hard. We can’t just love the people who are close to us. We have to be ready to forgive and rebuild with the people we had differences with, too. Hatred is what got us here. It’s what led people into the darkness in the first place. If we want our world to change, if we want to avoid another war, if we want to live up to the example that our real heroes set for us we have to extend a hand in friendship even when we think it might be rejected, even when we’re worried about what might happen if it’s accepted. We might not yet know, but we’ll never find out if we don’t try.

So, I’m taking a chance on love. I hope you can find it in your hearts to do the same.

 

Pansy had to stop at least thrice for laughing so hard. I’m sure I would’ve done the same if it wasn’t almost too absurd to laugh about.

Of course Potter (with Granger’s help. Is he even literate?) would turn his big announcement into a sanctimonious lecture on the importance of, of all things, love. He can’t even advertise for a fuck without giving a lecture on the importance of Hufflepuffian tenderness.

As if anyone but Potter could write that with a straight face. The importance of love. For Salazar’s sake, someone needs to get those absurd spectacles of his checked. If he could open his eyes properly he’d see that the life of a former Death Eater isn’t exactly unicorn rides and trifle. Not too many friendly hands extended this way, Potter’s included, the hypocrite.

Which should’ve made the deal Pansy offered doubly appealing.

She may’ve caught me staring. It was hard to stay focused in the face of that barely visible white line on the inner curve of her left breast, remnants of Goldstein’s impressively loud ejaculation.

The combination of that sickly sweet smile and devilish gleam in her eye was last seen shortly before she blackmailed Terry Boot into taking her to the Ministry’s Summer Tea for DA members, and I should’ve known the next thing out of her mouth would be trouble.

The bitch leaned back on the desk, knowing full well that her nipples would stand out through the silk of her robe – I’ve seen her practicing – and offered me a trade. I’ve fucked her plenty of times, but she knows how much I love a tight arsehole and has, perhaps on that count alone, refused me.

She leaned sideways so that plump, slappable arse came up off the table, and made me an offer: if I took Potter’s arse, I could finally have hers.

We both know she’d enjoy it plenty. I always have her screaming far more enthusiastically, not to mention honestly, than these interloping do-gooders. But admitting that I want it is out of the question entirely. For one thing, confirming the desire would close off an array of strategic opportunities. For another, her snatch is basically sufficient. For a third, I won’t take it until she comes begging.

I may be a disgraced Malfoy, but a Malfoy all the same, and some members of the twenty-eight are a bit more sacred than others. New money, the Parkinsons, a bit of luck with some enchanted tulips in the mid-17th century. Not one of the truly old families, not especially politically powerful – not the sort of people one admits to wanting.

Besides which, it’s transparently abut Pansy’s Potter vendetta. Try to sell a man to the Dark Lord, suffer widespread suspicion after the fact, and blame the original target for your life on the social outskirts…Pansy’s not exactly seeing logic there, but it’s too important to her to trade for a fuck. She’d have to think much bigger to get me interested.

I’ve declined, of course. Potter might be a refreshing challenge, and he might look particularly sweet in his Quidditch leathers with a bit of post-battle muscle on him, but it would be more work than I’ve ever been inclined to put into a dalliance. More than Pansy’s arse is worth, and admitting that she’s got something I want would be disastrous, never mind the publicity that would come with breaking the boy wonder’s heart. If she’s half the woman I think she is that’s what she wants anyway, and she’d use it to get me on the ropes. Please. The only ropes I plan to see will have her tied to the bedposts.

 

 

 

September 21st, Hogwarts Library

That cunt. That utter cunt. I should’ve known.

She sweeps out last night in silk and come and little else, telling me she’ll get me to take Potter out one way or another. She had the gall to walk out on a truly sharp one-liner about the things I’d be getting her to do instead, but I didn’t otherwise see a particular need to take her seriously.

Then, breakfast. Blaise’s presence should’ve been the first tip-off. Getting him out of bed before noon is close to impossible; he’s arranged his whole N.E.W.T.s program so he can fuck all night and sleep it off all morning. Even awake, he spends most of his time draping himself over the furniture and licking his lips and generally adopting this faux-Adonis persona that’s fooling almost everyone, if the gaggle of sixth years he’s got doing his bidding is any indication. But there he was, looking almost interested in something other than his mirror. If he was capable of enthusiasm it would’ve been all over his face when Pansy’s owl dropped a package between them.

He asked the sadistic harpy, in this low growl he’s adopted as though we don’t all remember the year his voice broke halfway through every sentence, what was in the package.

She patted his knee, pulled on the ribbon, and smiled at me.

Fucked. I was already fucked.

It was a key. A familiar fucking key. She didn’t take her eyes off me for an instant. “Didn’t I mention, Blaise? My parents bought me a new home, for after school.”

The arsehole played right along. “Oh, yes, I’d forgotten. Where did you say it was?”

That woman has a fake smile composed entirely of icicles and goblin-forged blades. “Why, Wiltshire, of course. You know, Malfoy Manor. They got it for a song at a one of those auctions the Wizengamot’s ordered. Fire sales, more like. Seems the Ministry couldn’t wait to be rid of it. Easy to see why, don’t you think?”

He agreed. There’s an “accidental” entrail-expelling curse in his future.

On she went. “It’s not really what I wanted, you know. I would’ve preferred something in the city, it’s so boring out at the Manor. Not to mention the decor, isn’t it ghastly? Hardly the sort of modern home that befits a young witch. But they insisted it was a sound investment and would make a good family home. As though that’s what I care about. Mummy and daddy can be so dim. It’s certainly a bit insane to think anyone would want to live in that dark, decrepit old pile of rubble.”

She slipped the key to the Manor’s front gates into her robes, nestling it into her cleaving, snug below the fucking Hallows. “Isn’t that right, Draco?”

She knows – they both know – that I’ve pointedly ignored press coverage of the whole affair. It’s not as though we need the house. Even if the Ministry got the Manor and some of the vaults, we’ve the Chalet, the flats in Paris and Rome, the villa, the townhouse in Mayfair, and several holdings in Asia and the Americas. Seized or not, the Manor is one estate among many.

But it’s the estate. The original gift from William the Conqueror. Our ancestral home. It belongs to us more entirely than any of the others, and Pansy knows it. They all know it.

That I made it through breakfast without killing anyone is a testament to the kind of Malfoy I’ve become. Which is to say, the kind that values long-term goals over passing outbursts.

Then she comes over here when she knows I’m revising for Arithmancy and bends over across the table just so, so I could see the glimmering edge of the key sitting between the swell of her breasts, and asks if I’m ready to reconsider last night’s wager.

I told her, of course – perhaps through gritted teeth but with no less certainty than usual – that she need only beg if she wanted me to break in her arse.

That sadistic harpy had the nerve to laugh.

Then she proposed something else. Cast a Muffliato, pulled the key out of her robes and made me the kind of bet that neither honour nor, frankly, desire would let me refuse.

“That little incident with Potter” – and that she can call it that really says it all – “has cost me an awful lot of work. Redemption is so demanding. All that fucking, all those donations. It gets terribly old, and fast, and it’s all Potter’s fault.” The same old song, and apparently it’s got her quite determined to see his heart broken. Can’t say I cared about that any more today than I did last night.

Until she offered me the Manor.

If I win Potter’s heart and break it, I’ll retake possession of the Manor for our family. Her arse, and Potter’s, will be a pleasant bonus. If I fail, I have to help her sell the Manor; hand over the names of every foreign witch and wizard who’s ever expressed an interest and oversee renovations – which is to say, the destruction of everything my family’s built over the last millennia. But that will be irrelevant. And, since she seems thoroughly convinced that I’ll fail – insists that she knows those DA types now and Potter will never touch the likes of me – it’s an excuse to give that haughty whore a touch of comeuppance.

Thinks she’s getting to me, too.

“Do you really think he’ll open his arse, let alone his heart, to the Dark Lord’s failed lackey?” “Don’t you think he knows the only thing your hands are good for is casting Crucios?” “Why would he ever choose you when he could take his pick?”

I’ve heard worse. I’ve said worse. I’ve certainly done worse. And I’ve no doubt that I’ll come out victorious.

 

 

 

 

September 23rd, North Tower Common Room

Observations
- HP returns from Quidditch pitch between 9:05 and 9:25
- If has not showered in changing room, does not shower straightaway (disgusting)
- Prefers sitting near the fire or towards the windows
- Looks up whenever someone enters or leaves; keeps track of who is in the room
- Mixes with houses other than his own (not Slytherin)
- Sits most frequently with Granger and Weasley (obvious)
- Also spends time with Longbottom, Thomas, Finnigan, Abbott, Bones
- Occasional visits from Weaselette, Lovegood, younger Creevy
- Does not read own press
- Does subscribe to and read all available Quidditch periodicals
- Will play Exploding Snap or Wizard’s Chess (if Weasley insists), avoids Gobstones
- Minimal homework in evenings (check library in afternoons to see if he’s there)
- Likes: Chocolate Frogs, Fizzing Whizzbees, Liquorice Wands, Pumpkin Juice, Butterbeer
- Dislikes: Jelly Slugs, Pepper Imps, Lemon Sherbets, red currant rum, Gillywater
- Retires to own bedroom between 10pm and midnight
- Bedtime routine depends on Granger and Weasley (obvious, again)

 

 

 

September 29h, North Tower Common Room

The mission to seduce Potter is proceeding well enough, though his routines don’t make it easy. I’ve determined that he does tend to work in the library in the afternoons, though rarely without Granger’s company. He also always arrives to and leave meals in the company of one or both members of the ugliest “hot young couple” to grace the wizarding press in decades. They, and the rest of his followers – they really should have called it “Potter’s Army” – have made it difficult to get to him alone.

I’ve therefore had to find ways to initiate encounters in his fan club’s presence. This, of course, has put Granger especially a bit on alert, and I’ve had to contrive unfortunate pretenses for initiating contact.

So far I’ve “bumped into” him at the pitch to ask about his broom care practises, returned a pawn that Weasley’s Queen had thrown halfway across the room, dropped a book near his usual seat in the library, spent several afternoons studying in his sightline, and made a point of occupying his favorite window seat whenever possible

These interactions are obviously limited in scope, and I will need to find ways to increase their frequency and intensity. However, fortunately, Potter himself has not been unwelcoming when these moments arise. Maddeningly, I sense a touch of amusement, as though he realises that a Malfoy has never done such menial things as rescuing errant chest pieces, sans magic, without ulterior motive. But amusement is far better than scorn, at least in this context.

As an area of mutual interest, Quidditch may be a useful icebreaker, especially because it gets him out of Granger’s grasp. Her presence foils most of the other obvious alternatives – he doesn’t need a tutor in any of his subjects, he isn’t wanting for company or support, and she seems to automatically anticipate the vast majority of his and Weasley’s needs. But I’ve made some inquiries to Blaise about upcoming social engagements, and fully anticipate making headway shortly.

 

 

 

October 8th, North Tower Bedroom

Potter may think love will save us all, but it was Slytherin machinations – and a good dose of hate – that had him depending on love’s intervention in the first place. My attempts to get him on his own continue to prove that this slavish dedication to sentimentality mostly makes for credulity and hurt feelings.

Tonight brought the next stage of my plan: properly socialising with our saviour.

Having been well chastised for his complicity with Pansy’s little stunt – a paddling at his request, agreement to future assistance at mine – Blaise took me as his date to tonight’s Slug Club dinner. It was sure to be thoroughly fatuous, and didn’t disappoint. But Potter was present as expected – without his legendary boyfriend, interestingly enough – and ever so surprised to see me rubbing shoulders with the side of the light.

He was even more surprised to hear that I’d read his manifesto in last month’s Witch Weekly, which could only be surprising to someone who intentionally shuts himself off from all wizarding press. And I was even more surprised that he defended the thing. Really, having survived the Dark Lord, he may yet choke to death on his own earnestness. No one is that sincere all the time. I’m beginning to think he’s just an exceptional actor, though he lacks the brains for it.

Do you know, I asked him how much they paid for that tripe and he said he did it for free? Something about minor editorial constraints and donations to those ridiculous causes he mentioned in his column.

And he claims he’s not even doing it at the behest of the Ministry. “Kingsley would never ask me to do that.” Right. Politics is politics and politicians are politicians no matter how they like to dress it up. Perhaps Shacklebolt’s clever enough to wrangle him into it without an explicit trade, but there’s no universe in which the Ministry isn’t benefiting from his publicity. None. All that talk about love and reconciliation saves them having to actually bother with any of it.

Though even that basic fact of the world doesn’t save him from that hangdog, kicked puppy sort of a look when it’s brought to his attention, as though he really thinks this Ministry will be better than the last. As though he really believes it.

Still, he stands there and espouses the idea as though he actually thinks he stands a chance of convincing me, as though if he opens his eyes just a bit wider and leans in just a bit closer, the sheer force of his own desire to believe will prove catching.

To me! He tried to convince me. As though he’s never met me. As though he’s completely forgotten that I spent years under the thumb of a Dark Lord at the behest of my oh-so-loving father. As though my aunt, who never stopped declaring her love for He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Disrespected-In-This-House-Draco, hadn’t tortured a member of his Golden Trio. As though the love and warmth of Albus Dumbledore ever did a damn thing to protect my friends, as though the great benevolent headmaster didn’t know full well what I was doing and lead me into a nightmare regardless, just as he did Potter.

Neither Potter’s proximity nor his vehemence stands a chance of selling me on that particular idea. It’s love, not dragon pox. They may be equally dangerous, but the former is hardly as contagious as the latter.

And while I may still be cross at Pansy for temporarily outmaneuvering me – her paddling has yet to come – at least she’s far more realistic. She and Blaise and I have still shared a hearty end-of-the-evening laugh over my recounting of Potter’s attempts to convince me. And over imported Firewhiskey the likes of which he’d never appreciate, much needed after tonight’s performance.

Because I can perform, as always. Do my best to look appropriately contrite. I’m so sad and damaged, the poor little former Death Eater who can’t possibly understand the power of love. Perhaps Potter will have to get close enough to give a demonstration.

On his hands and knees. Or maybe just his knees; he does have an absolutely luscious lower lip.

Then, so does Blaise. Perhaps he’ll suffice in the meantime.

 

 

 

October 9th, North Tower Bedroom

Blaise’s lower lip more than sufficed. Still delightfully apologetic. He had brought up two of the Slytherin sixth years for “Firewhiskey” and had them both on their knees. He’s gorgeous, that man. All rippling muscle and dark skin, setting the pace as he fucked one into the other. Didn’t stop for a moment when I walked in, just turned them so I’d have a better view and sucked me off for dessert.

Say what you will, nobody does friendship like a Slytherin.

Speaking of which, it may be time to forgive Pansy, in a similar vein.

 

 

 

October 14th, Quidditch Changing Room 

Today’s update, and my first encounter with Potter unaccompanied, comes courtesy of Hogwarts’ new recreational Quidditch league (their latest idiotic attempt to find something to do with the eighth years; stick us with the inept, apparently) and a modified Sonorous. My ongoing observations have revealed that Potter likes to listen to music on some sort of Muggle electronic device whilst getting ready and cleaning up. Being on the dark side of a wizarding war certainly came with lessons in how to charm Muggle artifacts. Father might not have meant that training to be used in quite this manner. But then, given the object of my supposed affections, perhaps he did.

He injured himself in practice last week and has been moving slowly ever since. I knew he’d be last in the changing room and couldn’t possibly miss the opportunity to find some silver lining in the poor boy’s condition. While he was finishing in the showers – the one furthest from me, of course – I cast a charm on his musical device. The volume increased slowly, until it was blaring from his end of the room, courtesy of the best training in Muggle-bating a Dark Lord can provide. His every attempt to turn it down had the opposite effect. It wasn’t long before he came stumbling over to me, befuddled and half-dressed, looking for either a culprit or a solution.

He found at least one, though the look on his face before I admitted my involvement – “Potter, are you responsible for that damnable racket?” with my best charming smile – was priceless. He was further along in the post-practise process than I’d expected, given the racket and the degree to which it had him flustered. He’d got as far as his jeans and trainers and a t-shirt thrown over one shoulder, his hair still damp and sticking up wildly in every direction, eyes darting around the room like a confused Crup.

His gaze was full of fire when it met mine, his skin flushed from the steam. “Do you know how loud this is?”

I smiled again. Politely. “Thought you enjoyed Muggle music.”

Any lack of overt hostility confuses him. He stood there blankly. For really quite a long moment. It’s a wonder he escaped even someone as dim as Yaxley with reflexes as slow as a Troll’s.

I lowered the volume and suggested it had been a friendly bit of assistance, in deference to his injury.

Having already charmed the device, it was easy enough to change the tune. Something breezy and romantic off the dreadful new Weird Sisters album; they’re as preoccupied as Potter with the idea of love.

“More to your liking?” He was just standing there, still staring at me stupidly, and I was beginning to wonder if his head had had a run-in with a Bludger.

“Why are you doing this?”

A delicious question. “Post-war reconciliation, Potter. Hadn’t you heard?”

True enough. That I’m attempting to reconcile with my ancestral home is none of his concern.

He squinted and stepped forward, perhaps to argue, but it was at that moment that he noticed that I was…a bit further behind in the changing process. I’d started stroking myself when I cast the Sonorous, and was tenting the thinnest, smallest, most threadbare towel I’d been able to find. Not too difficult, given the condition of supplies at this disastrous excuse for a school.

The saviour of the wizarding world squeaked. The thinnest, highest, reediest sort of embarrassed squeal.

Delightful.

I asked if he was alright. He didn’t answer.

He was visibly straining to keep his eyes off my towel. Few are more familiar with his intense stares than I, and this was not one of them. He was staring at the ceiling, pointedly avoiding me. Afraid of where his eyes might wander, perhaps?

I decided to push the envelope, just a bit. “You don’t have to believe me, Potter, but I would like to finish getting dressed.”

I dropped the towel and stepped up to him. “Do you mind?”

While I was already fairly certain, Pansy and Blaise – both connoisseurs - have confirmed that my cock’s really quite nice. Pale and full, the head a bit darker than the shaft, just the right size to get the job done without become intimidating, and I’d timed it all so my foreskin was halfway withdrawn.

He’d’ve been an idiot not to look, and eventually he did, just for a second. Then blushed, of course, the naïf. He almost yelled his, “Of course not!” before he began mumbling to himself, calling himself an idiot. A new point of agreement between us.

I pulled on my boxers, assured him it was safe to look.

He was breathing deeply, eyes closed. Trying to steady himself.

Things took a bit of a turn, then. I suppose investigation and accusation is his sort’s version of a calming ritual. He told me he knew what I was up to. Just like that. “I know what you’re up to.”

He has the subtlety of a Hippogriff, but that’s not the kind of opportunity one can let pass. I asked what he meant, exactly.

He said someone had told him what “we” were up to, “your group of Slytherins.” That we were trying to charm our way back into wizarding society. That he’d heard I was almost certainly a heartbreaker, that he should be careful around me.

Which means he was asking about me.

The question remains: who’s giving him his information? He wouldn’t disclose any specifics, just said that he had his pureblood sources, too.

I asked; told him I should at least have the chance to defend myself. He refused. Some typically Gryffindor nonsense about protecting one’s friends and actions speaking louder. Supportive music might be a nice attempt, etc., etc., but reconciliation involved hard work and genuine reform, not just gestures.

We were back to that, again, and my temper may have got the better of me. “And what about love? What about the extended hands you’ve rejected before?”

He became very quiet. Sighed. Ruffled his hair. Gave me another one of his “I’m so sad and full of wistful, melancholy regret” faces. And left! Without even looking at my cock again!

Must find out who this source is. This can’t be allowed to continue, and if there’s someone he trusts that easily, changing what they’re saying is the quickest way to fix it.

 

 

 

October 15th, North Tower Common Room

Sacred Twenty-Eight (or so)

Abbott – Family in wrong circles. Hannah doesn’t know, not close enough to Potter.
Avery – Dead, Azkaban.
Black – All dead save Mother. The elf? (No – summoned from kitchens and questioned.)
Bones – Family dead. Susan doesn’t know, not close enough to Potter
Bulstrode – Knows better, benefits if we succeed.
Burke – Azkaban.
Carrow – Azkaban.
Crabbe – Dead. Azkaban.
Crouch – Dead.
Fawley – On the continent. Wouldn’t know, wrong circles.
Flint – Not close enough to Potter.
Greengrass – Not close enough to Potter.
Goyle – Know better. Not close enough to Potter.
Lestrange – Dead. Azkaban.
Longbottom – ?
Macmillan – Blood traitors. Wrong circles. Ernie doesn’t know, not close enough to Potter.
Malfoy
Nott – Nose in a book, pretends not to know, not close enough to Potter.
Ollivander – Retired to Greece.
Parkinson – ?
Rosier – Dead.
Rowle – Azkaban.
Selwyn – Fled to the continent, wrong circles.
Shacklebolt – Wrong circles.
Shafiq – On the continent.
Slughorn – ?
Travers – Dead. Azkaban.
Weasley – Blood traitors. Wrong circles, wouldn’t know.
Yaxley – Fled to the continent, wouldn’t know.
Zabini – ?

Longbottom
Parkinson
Slughorn
Zabini

Longbottom is close enough to Potter and his family is in some society circles, but how would he know?

Mrs. Parkinson would talk in a second – her mouth is about as open as Pansy’s knees – but how would she know? Pansy’s her little angel and would never do anything to suggest otherwise.

Slughorn’s a possibility, always an ear to the ground, but he’s not exactly keeping too many upper year Slytherins around, except Blaise.

Blaise wouldn’t tell Slughorn, he’s too busy kissing arse to admit to his lascivious ways. Blaise and I may share an appreciation of the conquest as well as the occasional dalliance, but he doesn’t tell anyone else, save his mother, much of anything.

His mother. Who he is unusually close with.

His mother who’s bought her way into all the latest society events and will want to make herself useful to the doyennes.

Fuck. Fuck.

 

 

 

October 15th, North Tower Bedroom

You’d think, in a school full of wizards, someone would’ve figured out permanent silencing charms for the doors. Though the lack of them certainly made that loose-jawed traitor easy enough to find. And just my luck, it was the two of them together, spread across his bed, high as the Astronomy Tower.

That fucking Hallows charm was hanging from her fingers. She’d knocked the circle at its centre totally out of alignment so the sheets were dusted with a fine white powder, though clearly an adequate amount had reached its final destination.

She’d used her uniform to tie his hands and feet to the bedposts and, try as he might, he couldn’t see past her when I threw open the door.

She didn’t even look. Just kept riding him. Fine by me. I enjoy the front view with some regularity, but so rarely get a look at the rear end in action. Round, nicely toned, but still plump enough for a bit of movement while she rode him.

All of which would’ve been quite pleasant if I hadn’t had more pressing matters to attend to.

I asked if she intended to keep me waiting all day. She reached down and finished herself off. The drugs really do make her more agreeable.

At least I’ll grant that she’d got Blaise exactly where I wanted him, however unintentionally.

I tightened his bonds and asked what he’d told his mother, when it would’ve got to another source, who would’ve got it back to Potter, and whether he was actually gay at all.

“You know, the usual. Not about the bet, just all the fucking you two do.”
“One of those old ladies’ luncheons?”
“Don’t know, mate, there’s a lot of old ladies there, put properly old, not anyone’s parents.”
“Yeah, but a hole’s a hole.”

And he’s the homosexual. Well, more or less, apparently.

Pansy – who’d collapsed across his chest – raised her head in evidence of the absolutely minimal amount of interest required to participate in a given moment’s gossip, and suggested, “Daughters of the Wizarding War Society? Longbottom? The scary old one.”

Longbottom.

Blaise hmmmed and nodded.

Longbottom. Fucking Longbottom. It makes perfect sense. His grandmother never could keep her nose out of anything, and sends him letters constantly. And Potter’d believe anything that clumsy oaf says.

I gave Blaise a hearty slap and asked him to confirm. His argument made a lot of sense for someone quite so thoroughly out of his gourd.

Longbottom is one of the select few whom Potter trusts implicitly, and his grandmother would run with the slightest hint of an accusation against any of us ex-Death Eater types. She’s hated us all on principle for years on account of the last war, and it’s only got more intense this time around. She’s exactly the kind of old bat Blaise’s mum would need to please, and anyone would know this was the ideal way to do it. Between the personal vendetta and general love of gossip, it’s a wonder I didn’t think of it sooner.

Unfortunately, getting to Longbottom will be harder than getting to Pansy (obviously) or Slughorn. He’s actually on the right side of things, which significantly decreases opportunities for extortion. They have money, so bribery won’t work. None of us could think of any particularly embarrassing information aside from his already well-known general incompetence.

Of course, we – well, me, and Pansy and Blaise with relatively minimal persuasion – have arrived at a conclusion: we’ll just have to make some dirt of our own.

Fortunately, Blaise was willing to trade one serious lapse in discretion for another. Not sure whether Pansy was more indignant about the idea that there was a war hero she couldn’t bed or that her tits might not be enough to make Longbottom forget she’d tried to kill one of his best friends, but the look on her face when Blaise and I agreed on both counts was almost as sweet as seeing Blaise up Longbottom’s arse will be.

 

 

 

October 16th, Eighth Year Bedroom

Mission accomplished. I am now in possession of half a dozen photographs of a naked, turgid Neville Longbottom.

Revolting to look at, but it’s not their artistic value that matters.

Blaise, for all that he’s a whore for the horn, has an impeccable sense of timing and real skill when it comes to seducing (mostly) straight men. A couple of Butterbeers in the common room, a few shared tales of last year at Hogwarts, a little wistful sighing on Blaise’s part – “oh, if only I could’ve been so brave” – a couple of whispered intimations, and those two perfect questions – “haven’t you ever wondered?” “how do you know if you’ve never tried it?” – and they were strolling towards the Slytherin corridor.

Blaise set wards to fall at midnight exactly and made sure to have Neville on his back, cock-deep in Blaise’s arse, when I walked into the room. Sexual genius that he is, Blaise even managed to “fall” with his mouth on Neville’s cock when Longbottom started to panic. Made for a very persuasive set of photos.

Neville may be a war hero now, but we all remember his Boggart. I’d know what buttons to push even if I hadn’t met his grandmother. One mention of her and he was begging for a reprieve. She’s just old enough to think this sort of thing will present a problem for him, and she’d have him married off in no time at all, whether he liked it or not.

Who knows what he’d do in exchange for secrecy?

I do. Well, and Blaise. And Longbottom himself.

He’ll be having a little chat with Potter when they go into London this weekend. Extolling my virtues, conveying how he’s heard that I’ve changed, how involved my mother’s been with charity – true enough, though the Prophet conveniently omits the fact – and how I’ve offered to help him with Potions so he can become a proper Auror if he wants. He’ll even be disappearing for a few hours a week to keep up the potions pretense.

Good old Longbottom.

One step closer.

 

 

 

October 20th, North Tower Common Room

Currently occupying Potter’s favorite window seat again. He keeps looking my way. How dreadful.

Longbottom reports success in his past weekend’s endeavours, claims that Potter was interested and easily convinced. “Easily” – hard to tell if this is an inaccurate judgment reflecting Longbottom’s usual ineptitude, but it’s intriguing regardless.

Observations:
- Longbottom has confirmed that Potter travels to London regularly.
- Potter often returns from his weekends away with minor injuries.
- Aside from these signs – usually minor abrasions, un- or inexpertly healed, no more specific indication as to where he goes. Longbottom claims Fidelius keeps him from disclosing.
- Potter continues to listen to his Muggle devices, but is using their wizarding equivalents more frequently and has a new interest in the Weird Sisters.
- Potter occasionally hums along, but does not dance.
- Granger and Weasley are ever more engaged with one another, leaving Potter the odd man out at times.
- Granger and Potter are nevertheless working together on more charitable projects.
- Potter has started advertising for a series of these projects that involve day trips away from Hogwarts, including group travel.
- As the Ministry’s poster boy – sometimes literally – it stands to reason that Potter will be in attendance at all of these.

 

 

 

October 27th, The Owlery

I’ve just sent off my registration form for the Ministry’s “Weekend of Commemorative Service.” Vomit. But it’s one way to get around this on-campus probation requirement, and Potter’s sure to be there. In addition to posting signs in the common room, he’s been touting it in this week’s Prophet and October’s Witch Weekly. He’s on the cover, again.

Speaking of which, Longbottom’s continued to live up to his end of the deal, and it’s working like a charm. It started with a few sideways acknowledgements, and when I escalated to greeting Longbottom in the Great Hall he knew enough to play along. War does wonders for one’s poker face, apparently including even his.

Potter had grown a bit reticent after our interaction in the changing room, but that seems to be passing quickly enough. We’ve progressed back to occasional moments of assistance and regular hellos. Not sufficient to win the bet, but progress. And he seems to have appreciated not being hounded with apologies, as his followers would’ve done. Bodes well, really.

I’m closer all the time, and this charity bit is the perfect next step.

Good thing, too. The Manor’s beautiful this time of year, crisp and cool in the late autumn, the wind whipping through the trees. There are few things so perfect, and I don’t intend to miss it next year.

 

 

 

November 1st, Mrs. Muggle Something Something’s House

This is a dreadful bore. Dreadful. And boring. They’ve sent us to Muggles’ houses to do menial tasks the Muggle way. Something about building inter-community understanding and humbling ourselves.

This is a ridiculous, absurd waste of time and talents of the sort only the Ministry could concoct. If they need Muggles’ household tasks accomplished the most decrepit elf could do them in a flash. A sub-O.W.L. student could do most of this inside of fifteen minutes. Yet this old hag – no, I wish she was a hag, this old Muggle – greeted me with a mile-long list and the smell of sardines.

Pick up her groceries. Scrub the floors. Wash the windows.

And we’re supposed to entertain them, too. Their chess pieces don’t even move.

It’s hard to imagine a Ministry endeavor more thoroughly biased against purebloods. Almost as though they want us to fail.

Imagine that.

Anyway, I Stupefied her, levitated her to her bed, and did it all with magic. Fortunately, I brought a book, and I’ll Rennervate and Obliviate before the Ministry coordinator arrives.

A whole hour left. Maybe I can fit in a wank. But to go with the old familiar – Pansy on her knees? – or the new and exciting – Potter on his?

Perhaps I can fit in two.

 

 

 

November 1st, The Owlery 

This afternoon got considerably more interesting.

Everything went smoothly with the Ministry officials. My Obliviation skills were as good as they’ve ever been, and my Muggle charge was spritely and full of praise for my patience and helpfulness when they arrived.

They brought the whole Hogwarts contingent back to the Ministry and set us up two to a Thestral for the ride back to school – we can all see them now, of course, which makes them quite a bit easier to use for this sort of thing – and Longbottom had the acuity to realise he needed to come up with an urgent reasons to switch with me once he was assigned to ride with Potter. I was meant to share with Hannah Abbott, who has a perfectly sweet little waist; I’m sure he didn’t mind riding back to school with his arms wrapped around it too terribly much.

Meanwhile, I got to slide in behind Potter.

It was strangely familiar, riding behind him like that. I realise it’s not the first time, though there’s no need to recount those particular circumstances. Suffice it to say, this was destined to be more pleasant, even if not for the strange conversation.

He took the switch well enough. I suppose it wouldn’t do for the great hero to look put out about it.

I didn’t even have to start the small talk. He asked how the day had gone before we even reached full flying speed.

I lied, of course. “It was wonderful. It’s so good to meet new sorts of people, to really understand how they live.”

That bastard had the gall to laugh. To tell me I was lying. Never mind that he was right.

Well, mind a bit. He was right and he knew it.

What’s odd is that I admitted to it. Knowing full well that it would be a disaster if the truth is ever found out, if I gave even the slightest hint at my dissatisfaction, I didn’t lie.

Not to say that I told the whole truth; I doubt Potter would approve of my strategies.

But I didn’t lie.

He said, bold as brass – but he always has been, I shouldn’t be surprised – “Yeah right, Malfoy. Muggles or not, there’s no way you loved doing chores on a Sunday.”

I did try. The usual. “It’s an honour to help my community, blah, blah.”

He just – unbelievable, but he always has been unbelievable, and he really did – just laughed. Laughed. And asked me if I was “for real.”

And then I did it again. Told him. That yes, I did – do – hate charity. Am just in it for appearances.

He laughed again. Thanked me. Thanked me. Told me it was refreshing.

I’d wonder if he was hitting the unicorn horn too, but his neck was sans chain. Just naked skin, tan and soft and covered in fine, dark hair at the base of his neck. And he never would.

He must’ve felt me stiffen, because he was full of entreaties and olive branches when it happened. Not that that’s any less strange, but it was unexpected. He told bad jokes – filthy bad jokes, something about a Japanese golfer? Not sure what golf is, but he laughed quite heartily when I asked.

I noticed it was the only time he’d laughed. Asked why.

Useful information, I figured. To know what was on the boy wonder’s mind. Perhaps there was trouble in his romantic paradise? Some exploitable weakness in goings on with his as-yet-unseen boyfriend?

But, curiouser and curiouser, he just told me. No obfuscation. No whinging. It was just the anniversary of his parent’s death, Halloween.

Stupid of me. I know that. Of course I know that. Hard not to know that. There was a headline about it in the bloody Prophet yesterday. “The Boy Who Grieves.” Utter tripe, but hard to miss, and a major lapse to have let it slip my mind.

Whatever else, I can’t let myself forget things like that. No matter how hard he makes me laugh, or how tan his neck is.

He was just a bit reflective, he said, wondering what it would’ve been like if things had been different. He was so open about it, so sure of his emotions, that it’s hardly surprising that he’s not falling all over himself in despair as those idiot reporters would have us believe. Besides which, it’s one thing to read it in the papers, but quite another to have the great saviour between your legs, confessing as though that kind of honesty, that candour, is nothing.

And then he laughed again, but in a different sort of a way. More of a low chuckle. A chortle, perhaps. Not quite bitter, but not entirely humourous. Ironic? Can boy wonders be ironic?

I asked if he was alright and he laughed, yet again. A rumble. Yes. It was more of a rumble. I could feel it move through him, his back resonating against my chest. He said it was just nice to be able to talk without having to field a million questions. That it was “a refreshing lack of bullshit,” if I knew what he meant.

I do know, even if it’s completely opposed to my daily experience. Didn’t even argue the point. And laughed, too. More of a huff of air, but that made him laugh again. I could feel him moving against me through it.

We just talked for the rest of the ride. Too bad Thestrals are so fast.

Still, it was time enough to accomplish something. To learn something. To get a bit closer to gaining his trust.

Now I’ve just got to finish this letter to Mother. Make sure our stories about charities align. See how she’s holding up.

 

 

 

November 5th, North Tower Common Room

Pansy’s been throwing tantrums all week. Huffy little snits and the usual barbs, but more frequently than even her usual. No idea what it’s about, but it’s especially strange for being accompanied by an eagerness that’s notable even for her. Very handsy. Bending over, stopping by on her way back from the shower, lots of cleavage. Which for Pansy means that her nipples are on the verge of a prison break at any given moment.

Just interrupted to let me know she’s having a shower. Something about a long, sweaty dueling practise, needing to rinse off, blah, blah, invitation to join. Her pouting and whining is really rather extreme, and not especially arousing.

Should do it though. She’s a beast when she’s unhappy and nothing calms her quite like a good fuck. Nor have I ever found making use of her bits too terribly onerous, even if Potter has proved to be more interesting masturbatory fodder of late. But something more interactive than my hand is appealing. Yes, I’ll go join Pansy in the shower. A few minutes distraction never hurt anyone.

 

 

 

November 5th, North Tower Bedroom

Potter and I have a Seeker’s game planned for this Sunday morning. Warming the pitch up before the first match of the season. Must have my broom polished before then.

I had just gotten up to follow Pansy to the showers when he came into the common room. He smiled, mouth and eyes both, and asked if I was coming to look for him. Joking, of course, I think, but not an opportunity to miss. I said yes.

He had the good grace to look surprised, and asked why.

I’m not a Slytherin for nothing. Quidditch is and has been the perfect strategic device. Something we’ve got in common, plus a dose of healthy, easily manipulable antagonism. A Quidditch question, I said.

He raised an eyebrow. Which he’s not even supposed to be able to do. That’s my thing, and I’ve worked at it. Of course he can do it like it’s nothing. And how he even knows when I’m bullshitting is beyond me, but he just does. Thank goodness he wasn’t a Death Eater. Legilimency has nothing on Potter’s intuition.

Unfortunately, I panicked. Told him I missed him.

Even more unfortunately, as soon as it was out I knew it wasn’t wholly untrue. There’s something about his presence that’s bizarrely relaxing. It’s as though he knows so much already that there’s no point in lying to him, and he’s not nearly as preoccupied with his own perfection as the papers would suggest. Seems to relish dirtying the pristine image, surprisingly enough, rather than trying to hold it over anyone.

It would’ve been lovely if he’d known enough to let the admission go. Instead, he quirked one side of his mouth and suggested I was having “another moment of honesty.”

Maybe it’s not intuition. Maybe he’s slipping Veritaserum into my drinks. Must be, because I just told him I didn’t like it much, the honesty. Which means I admitted to it. Which means I admitted to being dishonest at other points. Which doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it should, perhaps since I’m increasingly certain that he already knew.

Yet while it occurs to him to know, it doesn’t occur to him to use it. He just grinned at the admission and said we’d better do thinks that don’t involve talking, then.

My raised eyebrow is still just as powerful as he, and he stammered when he caught his own, apparently unintentional, meaning.

He insisted he meant Quidditch. Just Quidditch, a Seeker’s game. I was gracious enough to agree.

I bet beating him at Quidditch would get me one step closer. Perhaps we can share a changing room again. No real reason to use more than one set of showers for a friendly Seeker’s game. He’s already seen me in the altogether, so we’re long past due for the reverse.

Though perhaps a strategic loss is in order. The thrill of victory in his veins, etc., etc.

It’s just so hard to tell what he wants. Difficult to strategise when the target is so unpredictable.

Either way, best to make sure the kit is in order.

 

 

 

November 6th, Great Hall

To Do
- Check tailoring on Quidditch trousers
- Shine boots
- Polish broom
- Practice Wronski Feint
- Potions reading, Chs. 4-5
- Arithmancy observations
- Read November’s Which Broomstick?
- Re-read October Which Broomstick?
- Letter to Mother
- Shine Quidditch leathers
- Calisthenics
- Stretching

 

 

 

November 6th, Astronomy Tower

This evening’s observations were rudely interrupted by Pansy who, unfortunately, caught my telescope misdirected towards the pitch. Potter was practising. It’s only in my nature to take every competitive advantage.

She, of course, read it entirely the wrong way and accused me of being infatuated with Potter.

Fortunately, she lacks his insight and was put off the scent easily enough. Not without a few accusations and the thinly veiled threats she’d call reminders. “When I renovate the Manor, do you think I should destroy the fountains first, or the oaks?” As though anything’s getting destroyed other than her sanctimonious mouth.

Unfortunately, I’m beginning to suspect she’s not wrong about Potter.

Seeing him out on his broom like that, it’s hard not to wonder if he fucks as seamlessly as he flies, if he grips his cock – or the mythical Trevor-the-boyfriend’s – with as much passion and finesse as he holds his broom. And, next to him, Pansy’s constant machinations are irritating and a bit stale.

But I’ll take him on the pitch tomorrow. Put him back in his rightful place. Start getting into the habit of having him underneath me. Especially now that I know, for certain, I can recognise his feints at a thousand metres and in the dark.

 

 

 

November 7th, Quidditch Stands

I may’ve lost the battle, but I’m closer than ever to winning the war.

Potter continues to be problematically disarming. I suppose it is his signature move, disarming. Didn’t know it was such an extension of his personality.

In this case, thankfully, I’ve twisted it to my advantage. Perhaps unintentionally, but regardless.

We met this morning, before the Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff match, first of the season. A Seeker’s game, as agreed on. He’s ridiculously fair, insisted we play on the same type of broom, and I think not even to rub the victory in my face or head off technical arguments. Just actually interested in an even playing field. So to speak.

He still beat me, the bastard. I may’ve been…unhappy about it. A few choice phrases, etc., etc.

He just looked at me, head cocked to one side as though he was curious about something, and said, “You know, Malfoy, you take yourself way too seriously.”

“You take yourself way to seriously.”

The absurdity of that statement. As though everything in both of our lives hadn’t been designed for seriousness, as though we hadn’t just barely survived a war meant to destroy us both. As though we hadn’t both held death in our hands on numerous occasions.

I was distracted by the thought, and only refocused when Potter’s face loomed in front of mine, his hands flipped upside down, cupping his face and making circles around his eyes, and he was making these faux-hooting noises like an imitation of an owl. Which is what he was doing, it turned out. Imitating an owl.

He dropped his hands and smiled at me. I was agog.

He did another one. Puffed out his cheeks and pulled his head back till his chin doubled, and started croaking at me. A frog.

I may’ve laughed. At least, I think I did. He smiled and it was…fairly blinding. Distracting. Engaging.

He pulled his hair up into tufts – larger tufts – and fanned his hands out behind his head, adopting a slow, bowlegged walk and a creaky old voice and I soon realised he was imitating grandmother’s old elf. I was stunned.

It must’ve been visible because he dissolved into laughter. He made me promise, between his gasps, not to tell Granger. As if that was even an option.

I realised I was still smiling.

And then he clapped his hand on my arm and as he laughed it slid downwards. I don’t think he meant it to.

Then his fingers were nested between mine. He caught my eye and squeezed my hand and just…held it there.

It’s odd, but I don’t think I’ve ever done that before, save childhood shopping trips to Diagon Alley with Mother. The weight of it was strange. My palm got sweaty in an entirely unappealing way.

He didn’t seem to care. Just held my damp hand in his, in broad daylight, in the middle of the Quidditch pitch.

Noise in the background grew louder, and when particular chants grew distinct we both snapped out of that strange, warm haze. There was about to be a game on, and it wouldn’t do to be seen like that, for either of us. Which is why I withdrew my hand. I’m not sure why he didn’t let go.

He didn’t, though. Let go.

Instead, he tightened his grip and asked if I wanted to sit with him.

It was a ridiculous thought. We may share a tower, but we’ve got our own corridors, and even if neither of our houses were playing, it would’ve crossed a million invisible lines. And that would’ve been true when they were just houses, not sides of a war, not the difference between good and evil. I declined. Had to decline. He looked…not quite angry. Not angry at all. Sad? Disappointed?

Offering another Seeker’s game as recompense was a stroke of brilliance on my part, entirely instinctual. But it got another brilliant smile out of him. We’ll play Wednesday night.

His reaction was proof positive that my plan is working. It should come to fruition any day now. It’s clear that he’s learned to enjoy my presence, even look forward to it. His trust is within reach.

Once I’ve got it, I know exactly what I need to do.

 

 

 

November 17th, Hogwarts Library

To Do
- Owl Which Broomstick? subscription order
- Owl F&B for Feints and Formations: an Advanced Guide and collected works of Kennilworthy Whisp
- Owl Honeydukes for Chocolate Frogs, Fizzing Whizzbees, Liquorice Wands
- Owl Mother for family notes on organising charitable events; copy for HP
- See Prof. Vector re: additional reading for Arithmancy essay
- Potions essay – 3 feet remaining
- Remember to review Pansy’s potions essay (3rd reminder – do it or she’ll be intolerable)
- Drinks with Blaise, Nott, Macmillan
- Tend broom twigs
- Test for reduced drag
- Polish broomstick for Friday

 

 

 

November 20th, The Owlery

I’m an idiot. Fuck the other idiots. I’m the biggest idiot of all.

I had him. Had him in my grasp, ready to give it all up. Panting for it. And I didn’t.

What the fuck is wrong with me?

We’ve played four games now. This was the fourth. A Friday night. Crisp. Chilly. There’s a party in the common room. He didn’t want to go. He wanted to be with me, to play Quidditch with me, under the stars. To have – last time he brought cocoa, of all things. To have cocoa with me.

It seemed clear. All quite clear. The lingering glances, unnecessary touching, the repeated hand holding. An attempt at a kiss from him after the last game, badly fumbled but charming all the same.

It was clear. I had him.

He might’ve fumbled it again, so I planned to kiss him properly this time. Get him weak in the knees. He’s implied that he rather lacks experience in this area; I didn’t think it would be difficult. We were standing a foot apart, I tilted my head and parted my lips and brushed them against his.

It was as exciting as our games have been. A certain sort of electric give and take, the feeling of something elusive, much wanted. I was about to win for once; it made sense.

I pulled back, but he followed me and opened his mouth against mine. I was startled by his enthusiasm. We fell to the grass. Snow hasn’t fallen yet, but it was crisp and cold beneath us, the chill seeping in through my trousers.

He slid a hand up my jumper and I startled at the cold and pulled away.

Which was useful; the distance was just enough to remember myself. I told him not to start anything he wouldn’t finish, managed to look hurt, I think.

He responded beautifully. A hand on my arm, reassuring words.

What I’ve learned, over the course of these months, is that he really does mean it. All this tripe about love…he really believes it.

He said as much, again. That it’s just that he “doesn’t want to do anything that’s not done with…” he paused, took this deep, shaky breath, “…with love.”

I tried anger. Suggested he was saving his love for the infamous, absent Trevor he’d written about. I meant to make him defensive; he just looked confused and then laughed. He laughs at all the wrong moments.

Though not wrongly. Trevor is the name of Longbottom’s frog, from first year. I knew that, even. Was there when Longbottom lost him on the train, found him on the steps. Just after I’d held my hand out to Harry.

And there he was, with his hand reaching for mine, telling me he’d just borrowed the name, there was no Trevor, there wasn’t anyone else. It was just that he needed to know it meant something, that he’d seen what actions came from hate, from apathy, from manipulation on both sides of the war. That he knew I knew what he meant, because he knew I’d seen it too. Knew that I knew how much those things could hurt someone. Knew that there was something more between us – wasn’t there?

I said there was.

Of course I did. Of course I did. I had to. Had to. This has been the plan all along.

It worked, just like I knew it would. Like I’ve known it would.

He looked so…hopeful. Scared. His eyes were big, his lips turned up in just the hint of a smile. He said, “Okay,” on an exhale. Barely a whisper.

Then his hands were on his cloak, unclasping it, and he cast a warming charm, and I saw his fingers go to the hem of his jumper, and he lifted it over his head. He’s losing his summer tan and his skin was brilliant in the moonlight. And he said it again, “Okay?” Like a question. A question he was asking me. Was I okay?

I nodded. I know I did. I think I did. He asked again.

He was there, stripping off and ready for me, asking me.

And I left.

Like an idiot, a coward, a loser. Exactly like I’ve always been. Exactly what I am. And here’s another thing I couldn’t do, couldn’t have. Another grand plan, ruined by my own lost nerve. My own incompetence.

I can’t go back there now. Can’t face him.

Have to. I have to. They can never know. Losing this bet is losing everything. My home. My past, my future, every opportunity, the woman I’m actually meant for. The life I’m meant for. They can’t know about this turn of events. I’ll go, and drink. A few Firewhiskeys. Maybe I can get Blaise to give me head. Take the edge off.

Have to go back. Stiff upper lip. The Malfoy way. This is what I was born for. I’ve got to do it. I haven’t got any options.

 

 

 

November 21st, 12 Grimmauld Place

Freezing. It’s freezing. Casting a warming charm in a mixed neighborhood seems unwise. I’ve no idea how long I’ll be here. Should’ve brought a stiff drink. Could use one. Not that I can afford to lose a clear head. Not when this much is at stake.

I made it back to bed last night alone, for better or worse, but didn’t wake up that way. Pansy’d come in – really ought to change the wards when I get back – and was palming my morning wood. Casually as you please, sitting on the edge of the bed twisting that charm of hers between her fingers. The other hand was resting on my boxers, pressing into my erection. Said she was checking to see if I was prepared to claim my winnings.

I asked her which winnings she meant. She clarified – Potter had slunk back in to the common room late last night looking miserable and gone straight to his room, and he’d left first thing this morning. So it was obvious what had happened.

I haven’t slept well since I first started sharing a home with a megalomaniac, but I startled awake particularly quickly at that and asked her to leave. She was displeased. I shudder to think about the consequences, though there are sure to be some.

One step at a time.

I threw on trousers and went to find Blaise who – reliably enough – was passed out under a naked body. Male. Maybe Macmillan? He’d seen Potter’s return, but had no additional information. Recommended Longbottom, who was not especially glad to see me. Longbottom said Harry’d told McGonagall he just needed a weekend away. I leaned on him a bit, but clarification was not forthcoming.

There was a risk in the next bit, a particularly, Gryffindorishly, stupid bit of foolishness. I went to ask the headmistress – to plead with her – to be allowed to leave. Granger and Weasley were the only other possibility and they would never tell me but maybe, maybe, I thought, there was a chance she would at least give me permission to leave. I’d tell her it was a family emergency, that my mother had sent a howler, that it had self-destructed, that I had to leave, would wear a tracking charm, come right back, anything. Anything.

She was expecting me. In all of this, that may still be among the biggest surprises. That she didn’t kick me out on sight, didn’t refuse me on principle.

Not the biggest surprise, though. That came from Harry himself.

When I went in there, before I even started speaking, she said Harry had told her to expect me. Had left a Portkey and an address. Had told her I was helping him with a postwar rebuilding project and asked her to give me the necessary clearance. And she did.

It brought me here. These steps. They’re familiar, and I suspect I’m sitting in front of the old Black house, long concealed.

Sitting. And sitting. And sitting. Waiting. And sitting. And freezing. And waiting.

I’ll wait an hour, though. All day if I have to. Until the Ministry comes to get me, or until he does.

 

 

 

November 22nd, 12 Grimmauld Place

I wish I could say it’s his face I’ll always remember, the moment he crossed the wards and saw me sitting on his steps.

It was his hands. He was carrying those Muggle bags, those thin white ones, and they’d dug into his fingers so when he dropped them the skin behind his knuckles was red and ridged. They were full of boxes and tools and things, there was a ridiculous crash. He didn’t seem to notice. His hands fell slack to his sides, and his index fingers twitched and I couldn’t look anywhere else.

He didn’t pick anything up. Just ran the pad of his thumb over his fingernails. They’re so short, and the skin was brown around the edges, there was dirt under his fingernails, and he kept running his thumb back and forth over them. I followed those fingers as he advanced up the steps, as his legs came into view. And then one was coming towards me. I closed my eyes. I could feel it at my chin, the rough callous on the outside of the first knuckle of his index finger, where his wand rests when he’s casting. And then a stretch in my neck as he tilted my face towards him. The heat of his breath against my lips.

And then he was kissing me, his fingers in my hair, pulling me closer, onto my feet. Everything went cold when he stepped away.

Standing a step below me like that, his voice went straight through my chest. “You found me.” He let me. I said so. He didn’t say anything for a moment, and then, “I’m impressed.”

I told him I was in love.

His breath caught, and then he took a step up and his hands were on my chest, on my shoulders, his thumbs resting on my collarbone. His whisper, against my cheek, was the prelude to another kiss. “I love you,” he said. “Draco, I love you.” Again, and again. My name, and those words. And then the door was open and we were inside.

The house wasn’t as I remembered it from childhood. Or, it was, but with the dust and decay of the intervening decade. It was all macabre gloom, redeemable only because he gripped my hand harder in the shadows and pulled me ahead, and up the stairs.

He stopped at the first story, all flustered and fidgety and, “I suppose I should ask if you…” He couldn’t say anything, just sort of gestured around. Then said he knew it wasn’t what I was used to – I could’ve laughed for being glad he didn’t know what I was used to in this arena – that it wasn’t beautiful like I was used to, anything special, but he’d been working. On what, he wouldn’t tell me. Couldn’t? I told him – asked him, I hope? I don’t remember precisely – to show me.

Another dark flight of stairs, then he pushed against the edge of a gilded frame to reveal a staircase, flooded with light, smooth and bare, free of the dusty carpet that covers the rest of the house. I walked up first, into the attic.

He’d done it himself, he said, and asked if I liked it. He was so nervous I would’ve lied, but there was no need. He’s pushed the detritus of the Black family to one side and covered it in canvas drop cloths. He’s been learning to take care of these sorts of things, some combination of magic and Muggle skills. Sanded the floors and put windows in the ceiling – glass, not charmed – so the room is bright and feels as open to the sky as the Great Hall. More, perhaps, because these clouds, the birds, the heat that made him kick off the bedclothes before he woke this morning…it’s all real.

His lip was swelling. He was rolling it between his teeth and shifting his weight back and forth, and I loved it. Love it. Love him, and told him so.

His smile. I’ll remember that too. The way his shoulders relaxed. His tentative gesture towards the other part of the attic, beyond the staircase. Just as bright, and bigger, more open. Only a desk, holding a few books, and a chair, and a bed, big and low to the ground, inexpertly made with white linens and a duvet.

He was rambling on, about how it was plain and he knew it wasn’t much to look at yet, but it was clean and he promised the sheets were good, not that I had to, not that…he out-flustered himself. Just sort of ran out of things to say and stood there, scuffing the toe of his trainer against the bare wood floors, his hands tucked in his pockets.

There was only one thing to do. To kiss him, long and well, slowly and perfectly.

It wasn’t like that at all. The moment we touched it was…well. I lost my footing and almost fell, and he stepped on my foot in the rush to catch me. He seemed torn between mortification and amusement, as though he wanted to laugh but didn’t dare risk it. I’m rather glad he didn’t. It’s not that I’ve never been laughed at before, and there’s no rational reason as to why it would’ve been any more wounding in that moment, but I’m glad he didn’t. Besides which, we wound up with his arm around my waist and my hand gripping his bicep, and it was as good a point as any from which to proceed. Fortunately, my instincts hadn’t abandoned me even if my balance had, and I asked him if he wanted to move to the bed to avoid grievous bodily injury.

I had expected him to be shy. It’s not that he wasn’t shy, per se, but he wasn’t hesitant. His voice was low, a bit softer than usual, but his answer wasn’t delayed at all. It was an unequivocal yes, neither overeager nor laden with bravado, just a certainty about what he wanted. Who he wanted. That he wanted me. Wants.

He led me to the bed. But he didn’t – didn’t lead me, that is. I’ve been pulled into my fair share beds, or pushed onto them. Shoved against cupboard doors and into alcoves. I’ve lured men and women in with promises and filthy words and bargains. When I say he lead me to bed, I don’t mean any of that. There was no inducement. Having established that we both wanted to be in bed together, he walked over to the bed and perched on the foot of the mattress. It was entirely up to me to join him or, I suppose, not to.

Though there was no longer any question in my mind of not going. Hadn’t been for some time. I sat next to him, close enough to reasonably place my fingers over his. He hooked his over mine and toed off his trainers. I followed suit.

There was a pause, then. I knew he was inexperienced. He had suggested as much and, from his nervousness on the Quidditch Pitch to the slow buildup to our physical relationship, it would’ve been clear. Besides which, between a war and his imaginary boyfriend, the lack of opportunity is obvious. I had assumed he might not know how to proceed. I had not imagined that I might not know either. Of course, I know how to fuck, to reduce someone to begging, to seduce someone in every possible sense. But I had no idea of how to approach the task that was before me, how to do what the moment demanded. What Harry deserved.

I’ve felt fear during sex before. The fear of being interrupted, or injured, or that my partner would neglect to follow through on the agreed upon terms. This was not a fear of consequence, but a fear of action. That I would drive him away, or fail to act at all.

His fingers flexed against mine, and it served to draw me out of my head, thankfully. I returned his grip and then released it, moving to the hem of my jumper and pulling it over my head, barely managing to stay straight-backed between a chill in the room and his scrutiny as I turned towards him. There was nothing critical about it. Interest, yes, and curiosity. Attraction. He ran a hand down my arm and I couldn’t suppress a shiver. I don’t think it could’ve occurred to him to use that tell to his advantage. Instead, he just barely smiled at it and doffed his own top, dropping it on top of mine behind us.

The electric ease I had expected from the first showed itself, at last, when I leaned forward to kiss him and our skin touched. I had seen his chest, and he had touched my back, but to be against each other, pressed together, inspired something more than those fleeting sparks of excitement. He was warm where the air was cool, soft to the touch. Lean and not very muscular, but not insubstantial, either. Once I touched him, it would’ve taken a fleet of wild Hippogriffs to drag me away. Without the distance between us I could feel his back tighten in surprise, and release, and relax, as I gripped his shoulders and then massaged them. Could feel his breath hitch when I opened my mouth to him. Feel him move against me when we fell back onto the bed.

We went on like that for I don’t know how long. More than a minute, less than an hour. The sun was still in the sky when he pulled back, breathing heavily, and caught my eye. He reached for my belt buckle and undid it. He became tentative for a moment, then, with one of his hands still holding the leather and the other on my flies. I nodded. He nodded back.

With my flies undone, I moved up the bed, pulling him with me and shucking my trousers in the process. He ran a hand up the inside of my thigh with a look I can best describe as wonder. He stopped short of my pants, withdrawing his hand and looking to me for some sign of what to do next.

I didn’t know quite what to tell him. I wanted him to touch me, but the thought of it was overwhelming. I’d become quite hard, obviously, and it was clearly visible to him. His hesitation didn’t feel like it came from fear or disinterest so much as uncertainty about how to proceed.

I kissed him again, pushing him back until I was straddling him, able to kiss his neck and follow the trail of his jawline, to feel him arch up towards me. I wedged my knees between his, then, and pushed his legs apart, rolling my hips into his erection, feeling his moan as much as I heard it. He began to buck up into me, seeking the friction of our bodies together.

He whined when I pulled away, but was absolutely silent when I sat back and grasped the button on his jeans. I withdrew my hands, but he hadn’t meant his silence as a reproach. He reached down and undid them himself. His eyes were trained on me, and I was torn between holding his eyes and watching the hollow between his hipbones come into view.

The feeling of his legs against mine was as thrilling as the meeting of our chests. His skin…I don’t expect to ever have enough of it.

We were pressed together then, toes to tongues, his erection full and hard against me. It took him a moment to regain his breath. It must have been so unfamiliar, so new to him. Yet his intuition came to the rescue again; before he even seemed to realise it, he had begun to rock his hips against mine.

We stayed like that for a moment. Kissing, grinding together, his fingers digging into my arms.

The desire for more became pressing, I think for us both. I rocked back to kneel above him. The desire in his eyes was unmistakable. There was so much he had never felt. So much I wanted him to feel, wanted to give him.

I worked down his body until he was an inch from my mouth. His breath was coming in shallow gasps. I mouthed the underside of his erection through the soft cotton of his pants and felt a tug when his fingers threaded through my hair. I thought he was pulling me off, but when I looked up I saw him overtaken with lust, still certain, still wanting. He licked his bottom lip and drew a deeper breath. My name came on his exhale. My name and a word. “Draco…please.”

I nodded. Hooked my fingers into his waistband and pulled it away and down. He was full and flushed a deep pink, and bobbed away from his body and towards my mouth. There was already a strand dripping from the tip, threatening to fall into the nest of unruly dark curls at the base.

He gasped when I wrapped my lips around the head of his penis and he pushed into my mouth reflexively, hitting the back of my throat so hard I began to cough and had to pull back. He panicked and pulled away, looking so terribly concerned for my well-being I was worried he’d lose his erection. He didn’t have to stop, no one has before and I can certainly keep going in spite of it, but I don’t know if he could’ve continued without checking. I’m coming to understand that that’s just who he is, how he works.

In the interlude, while I recovered my breath, he asked if he could try instead. Remarkable, again…neither imperious nor uncertain. He wanted something and asked for it, but there was no leverage involved, nothing at risk if I’d said no. Though that didn’t come with any lessening of desire. His interest was clear, from the glances he kept casting towards my erection to the hand he had resting, at the ready, on my upper thigh. I assented. Lay back.

He was clearly a first-timer. It was sloppy work. Inconsistent and too wet and a few scrapes of his teeth had me arching more in fear than pleasure. He squeezed my bollocks too roughly and moved too quickly and applied so much suction at times that I felt like he might’ve mistaken my cock for a sugar quill.

I don’t think I’ve had one I’ve enjoyed more, one that’s leveled me so entirely. His face, eyes closed in concentration, and the ravenous noises he made, the way his fingers dug into my hipbones as though holding on for dear life.

Coming wasn’t a terribly likely outcome, though, and I worried he might strain his jaw. Concern flashed across his face, and then I suppose he saw mine. I know he did, he said it was beautiful. Wasn’t a moment to argue.

I pulled him towards me and kissed him again, reversing our positions. He was a bit less shocked by the sensation the second time round, and stilled his hips enough to let me work my throat open and take him in entirely. I could tell it was a struggle for him not to writhe around, and pulled back so he could thrust up as he needed. It was a sight to behold. And a taste, a smell, a feeling – of him in my mouth, his hand on my head.

I was surprised when he pulled me away again, but it wasn’t for long. He loosened his grip on my hair and pulled my fingers up from where they’d settled at his waist. He squeezed them and tried his best to look at me – though Merlin help me, his nerves were endearing – and said he wanted to feel… He trailed off, then, but drew his knees up and looked at me with such anxious pleading…

There wasn’t much precome to work with, so I sucked one of my fingers until it was wet, and watched him as I set it against the crease of his arse. That bloody Gryffindor just spread his legs further, so I could see the fine dark hairs that pointed me onwards.

He tensed when I pressed against his hole. Almost inevitable, with such a novice. He took a deep breath and tried to relax. A hand in his helped. He squeezed it and I tried again, but had barely pushed a fingertip into him when he clenched again and tried to push me out. He apologised and asked, more anxiously still, “Would you…with your mouth, while you?”

Of course. Of course I did. Whether it was because of pleasure or distraction, he opened for my index finger up to the second knuckle. After an initial adjustment he began to rock back against it and I crooked it in search of that particular spot.

I knew I’d found it when he sank down further, taking my finger in to the base and issuing a groan that left me even closer to incoherence. His stomach shook and he canted his hips for more.

I worked him between my finger and mouth, then, letting him rock into each sensation and trying to keep up a rhythm. I stopped when he did, but it was only to ask me for more.

I obliged, sucking him down to the base as I slipped a second finger in next to the first. He gasped at that, and moaned unreservedly when I began to work them both into him at once.

I had to keep my eyes on him through it all. He seemed to glow even in the fading sunlight, the pinks glancing off what was left of his tan and making him seem to burn with it. His mouth was open, his jaw working as he gasped for air. His eyes had been screwed shut, and I almost stopped at the force of his gaze when he opened them.

“Want,” he said. Just, “Want.” He took a moment more to catch his breath, and then. “Are you close? I want more, want to feel you.”

I asked if he was sure, if he wouldn’t rather it the other way round. He shook his head, said no, but yes, he was sure.

Our wands had fallen to the wayside, but he reached into the bedside table and pulled out a tube of lubricant. He handed it to me and I applied it rather liberally.

The moment I pushed into him…that’s the face I’ll always remember. There was moment of pain, a choked gasp, all to be expected I suppose. I stilled and let him adjust. And then he had his hands on my back and was pulling me into him, and the look on his face was awe and newness and wonder, and then pleasure when I started to move.

The feeling of it was incredible. The tightness, the heat. I’d made sure there wasn’t too much friction, but his grip around me was strong, the sensation intense and unrelenting. I asked if he was alright. He nodded, looked at me with the faintest smile.

I should’ve wanted to think of Quidditch statistics and flobberworms, but my ability to focus on anything other than him was non-existent. It was all him, all us. There was nothing more.

It wasn’t that it didn’t last long enough, but that it was so unreal, so unbelievably fantastic, that the minutes blurred together. It wasn’t that it wasn’t long, but that it seemed not to be time. And then he was stroking himself while I thrust into him, and his breathing grew faster, his grip on my shoulders stronger, and then he was coming, arching and groaning and calling my name, and I let go of everything, filled him, let it carry me away entirely.

The room was almost dark by the time I collapsed on to him. I lay on his collarbone and let him trace patterns on my shoulder blades. He kissed the top of my head; I kissed his chest, maybe his heart. We didn’t say anything.

I woke again when it grew warm, this morning. His windows let in quite a bit of heat with the light, and our bodies, still pressed so closely together, had generated a fair bit of slippery, sweaty dampness. He stirred when I moved off him and reached for me. He didn’t wake till I laughed; I didn’t mean to, but his stomach let out a growl worthy of a Blast-Ended Skrewt. He cracked an eye open at me and, thankfully, smiled.

He’s gone to make breakfast now, and insisted on a full English. I didn’t even know that he could cook, though I suppose the quality is still unknown. I don’t think he’d have offered if he couldn’t do it, though, and after seeing what he’s done with this room I can believe that he has all sorts of untapped skills.

It may be unseemly to record this all in so much detail, but the truth is that I don’t want to ever forget a second of it. I don’t know how I can be here, feeling this, doing this, after all I’ve done, but here I am. And I find I don’t care whether the eggs are crap or the room’s too warm. I don’t ever, ever want to lose an instant of it, to overlook any of what’s transpired.

More to come, I suspect. Potter’s promised to teach me how to sand a plank this morning, and he’s sent an owl to Hogwarts for permission to stay in London tonight. That gives us the whole day here together, and if I spend the whole time eating soggy rashers and performing Muggle construction tasks, I somehow still suspect it will be too short.

 

 

 

November 23rd, Great Hall 

The Great Hall feels entirely different this morning. Not because Pansy is cold as ice; that happens whenever she’s peeved, though this particular dangerous glare seems a bit more intense than usual. (Though what doesn’t, this morning?) Not because Blaise gave me a reassuring sort of pat on the back – at least I think that’s how it was intended – as he walked towards his newest sixth year conquest-to-be, though it was relatively nice of him. Not because Nott’s absent, probably in the library, or because Goyle’s confused about what’s going on and, though he has joined Pansy, keeps glancing this way with a knitted brow that’s his version of apologetic, then snapping back to Pansy with something more akin to fear. Not because of any of their eccentricities. I find I don’t even mind Goyle’s mystification or Pansy’s stoniness.

It gives me plenty of time to write, at least. And look at Harry.

He held my hand as we walked into the Hall for breakfast. I had relaxed my fingers, trying to tell him it was all right to let go, even though his hand in mine had become remarkably familiar over the course of yesterday. The consequences of such public displays are not insubstantial, and I know that he must know that. Still, he was having none of it. I would’ve ascribed it to stupidity not too long ago, but somewhere between Quidditch practises and yesterday’s meals and our lesson in Muggle construction, it turns out he’s both funny and clever. And not at all how he’s made out to be. He’s got a real sarcastic streak and a hint of biting wit. Though he melts in an instant when kissed or held, or when I tell him I love him.

He went to sit with Granger and Weasley and told me he’d see me upstairs this afternoon. It’s fine. He’s not getting the same chilly reception I’ve met with at the Slytherin table. Well, Weasley looks like he might start vomiting slugs à la second year and Granger mostly looks resigned, but they’re talking to him. And he’s radiant. He’s practically glowing. It’s hard to imagine, after all they’ve been through, that they won’t come around.

My housemates may be less immediately amenable. They may be less amenable, full stop. But the silence isn’t too hard to withstand compared to Pansy’s bragging and posturing and screeching. And they are still Slytherins. They’ll come around to Harry Potter’s boyfriend even if they’re unhappy with me. And Pansy isn’t the only Slytherin. Blaise won’t hold it against me, and I’ve never really got to know the sixth and seventh years. Pansy can pout all she wants.

The silent treatment comes with another advantage. It lets me daydream my way through yesterday’s events in as much detail as I see fit.

The two middle knuckles on my right hand are still raw from sandpaper. I’ve never liked an injury so much, though the love bite on my shoulder is a contender.

He’s ravenous this morning. A second helping of eggs, a third glass of pumpkin juice. Though it makes sense, given yesterday’s activities.

He keeps ruffling the back of his hair, resting his hand on the nape of his neck when he’s speaking. Wonder if that’s how my fingers look when we kiss, though they’d be paler against his skin.

Speaking of, his tan is fading…would sleeping under the skylights more frequently help? One more reason another weekend trip might be in order.

But first, Potions. Then Charms. Then it’ll be he and I, together.

 

 

 

November 23rd, North Tower Bedroom 

Pansy just left.

She was here when I came up from the common room. Lying on the bed, legs crossed, with a line of unicorn horn set out on her wand. She inhaled it and dabbed her nose and looked at me with such pleasure.

I should’ve run then. I should’ve changed my wards when I first thought of it. Should’ve kicked her out, plugged my ears.

Except.

She’s many things, Pansy. Vindictive, cruel, petty. She’d make a fantastic sadist. But she’s not stupid. She seems it, easily enough, but only because she’s smart enough to realise how far it gets her. She’s complained, on not a few occasions, that no one truly appreciates the skill involved in what she does. She watches, she observes. She has all the necessary information to make the kind of judgments that move mountains. To understand how things will play out.

She knew that I meant it with Harry. It was her opener, once she’d tucked the Hallows back into her robes. An accusation. “You think you love him, don’t you?”

I do.

If only that’s all she’d had to say.

It doesn’t matter. It wasn’t.

She didn’t move an inch. I suppose she’s used to giving commands while on her back. Just went on and on.

That this will destroy my reputation. As though my reputation is anything worth saving.

But that it could destroy his. What the press would say. How they would hound him. That it would keep him out of the Aurors, being with me, that they’d never take someone who was consorting with Death Eaters. That they would think I was controlling him somehow, that they’d trump up a reason to arrest me, that they’d make him testify publicly under Veritaserum, and then who knows what they’d ask, with press in the room. That he’d never have the privacy he craves, never be free of the war.

On top of which, what it would do to my parents. How they’d be hounded anew. What he would think of me if I didn’t stop things to save them that pain, how he’d come to see me as callous and cruel.

That I was mistaken to think our relationship would make me seem lighter. I had forgotten that’s how she would see things, how I should have seen them. But she’s right. The rest of the world will see me as an opportunist, a whore, a hanger-on. They’ll think I’m making him dark. That I’m destroying that light. That…him. Destroying him.

There’s only one step left before I’ve won our bet, after having come this far. Pansy’s right about that, too. Everything I’ve wanted, everything I was born to have. A war will have come and gone and I will have come out on top, will finally do my family proud, restore our name. The old families recovered from the Grindelwald affair and will again from this, and with the Manor so would I, so would Mother.

Pansy’s not stupid. She’s not wrong.

This was naïve. Foolish. Childish. It’s got to be set right.

 

 

 

November 25th, The Owlery 

Two of the owls have started sharing a nest. Looked like a new addition to the Owlery at first, huddled so closely their feathers are indistinguishable.

If I had kissed him back I never would’ve said it. If I had kissed him one more time.

Could smell his hair from there, the skin behind his earlobe, his breath. The pull on my lower lip between his two.

If I had kissed him back.

It doesn’t matter.

He was at dinner tonight. Of course he was. Idiot. I’m an idiot. He’s at dinner every night. Most every night. He was sitting between Granger and Weasley. Joking. Laughing. They adore him. All of them. Thomas and Finnigan. Ginevra, whatever her intentions. Patil and the remaining Creevey. Longbottom. They protect him. His happiness. He seems to glow around them. Was glowing tonight. Over steak and kidney pie. Not everyone can manage that, to look good over steak and kidney pie. To look happy. Free.

After everything he’s done. That he’s had to do. Happy. Free.

He can’t lose that. I won’t be the reason for it. Pansy is right; they wouldn’t be there with him if I was there too. Ginevra, almost dead at eleven on account of my father. Both Weasleys down a brother, with another maimed practically at my hand. Longbottom, essentially orphaned by my aunt, not to mention the photographs. Patil without Brown, the sole remaining Creevey, and how did that all happen?

He wasn’t with Granger and Weasley in the common room. For the best. His skin lit by the fire, his —

It’s for the best.

He had to believe it.

No. It has to be true.

No.

It is true.

He can’t be with me. I won’t be with him. He’s not the kind of person I was ever meant for.

He’s so common. His dirty fingernails and his stupid hair, his raggedy trainers and that perpetually stupid expression on his face. Watching him at the Gryffindor table, shoveling food into his mouth, speaking before swallowing, rubbing at his neck like some mannerless cretin. He may be eager, may be perfectly willing in bed, but he’d never make it in my world. They’d eat him alive because he’s too stupid to avoid it.

And it is my world. This is my world. Pansy and Blaise and Slytherin House. Money and power and the finer things. Not some dusty garret. How long would that last? A sawdusty season, perhaps, but it’s not a way to live a life. Not once you’ve had the best.

I need something more than that. Someone who knows that world. Someone as well-suited to mastering it as I am. He would be useless at a gala, a nightmare at any sort of proper tea. Any of the old matrons would chew him up and spit him out before he’d swallowed a bite of biscuit. Really, eating meals in bed – even the house elves would think ill of it, and while he may not care about eating like an animal, I was raised for better. And the problem, in the first place, is that he wouldn’t care. He simply doesn’t know any better. The Muggle tools, the Muggle clothes, the Muggle manners. He could only bring me down.

Pansy was right when she said I need someone who understands that world. It may be out of vogue right now, but the old families never lose their place for long. To let Potter deprive me of that is a mistake I’d spend the rest of my life paying for. To give that all away for a youthful infatuation – foolish at best.

It’s time to start taking it back. All of it. The power, the place in society, the Manor. All of it.

And if there was any doubt, his face when I told him was its own argument. He fell back into this incoherent rage befitting the Trolls and Hippogriffs with whom he insists on fraternizing.

I wanted to remember his face, now I always shall. The way it turned red, and the snot coming down from his nose. And over what? It wasn’t hard for me. Wasn’t difficult.

Pansy’s not the only one who can do this sort of thing. He’s an open book, that fool, and I made quick work of him. “Just wanted to know what the saviour was like in bed.” “I don’t love you.” “You might be able to catch the snitch, but you’ll never get back what you’ve given up to me.”

Easy.

He said he knew I didn’t mean it, that he didn’t believe me.

I went on regardless. “What are you even good for anymore? Posing? Pouting on the cover of Witch Weekly?” “Useless.” “Just a toy.” “You mean nothing to me.” “Never loved you.”

The tears were replaced by accusations and anger, by the same naïve disbelief that’s marked this whole affair. Of course I meant it, regardless of his declarations to the contrary. There’s nothing else to mean, to say. Perhaps his intuition simply isn’t all it’s been made out to be.

In any event, there’s no reason not to move on, now Harry Potter’s dispensed with. Fuck Pansy for amusement’s sake, get out of this hellhole, take a position in the Ministry, rebuild the Manor, retake my place in society. It’s only a matter of time, now, until I’m back to the life I was meant for.

 

 

 

November 26th, North Tower Common Room

Putting us all in one tower was a disaster from the start. And if they had to do it, they might’ve given us a common room bigger than the Manor’s minor parlors.

Potter’s been sulking by the fire all night. He refuses to budge or talk to anyone save Granger and Weasley, and occasionally Thomas and Finnigan. Even then it’s nothing more than occasional monosyllables, a few resigned laughs. And those two sidekicks of his keep throwing me dirty looks, as though I’m responsible for his gullibility.

It’s thoroughly irritating, and making it difficult to get anything of substance accomplished.

Never mind that he’s almost as ugly as he was yesterday. More of a greyish pallor than that angry flush, but he looks downright sickly either way. It’s a wonder I was ever able to withstand it at close range. Perhaps he really has got dragon pox instead of love. If so, I might have some modicum of respect for his carryings on. Potentially fatal illnesses are at least an understandable source of distress. A juvenile fling gone wrong? Hardly. Though I strongly suspect it’s his mawkish sentimentality rather than any legitimate malady.

I also suspect that the odds of getting any work done in this hellish excuse for a common room are close to nil.

Best to return to my bedroom. Or perhaps Pansy’s. I have all sorts of winnings to collect, and her back should make a reasonable replacement for Potter’s face. She might like fucking the heroic types, but we both know she belongs down here with me. After all her goings on about where I belong and resuming my rightful position, it’s high time she remembers hers.

 

 

 

November 27th, Quidditch Pitch

Where do you go to be sick when even the walk to the bathroom is haunted? When you hope to see his face around every corner, but are terrified of turning each one lest you find him there?

Outside, it seems. At least it doesn’t smell.

But I remember him here, too. His skin in the moonlight, his fingers against my back, his laughter. His kiss.

I’ve lost it all. Everything.

Pansy…I should’ve known better. Should’ve seen the bitterness creeping over her. I should be angry at him for distracting me, but it’s always been a talent of his. And it’s my own fault. I should’ve known.

Her fury wouldn’t have been anything new, but the distant calculation inspired a different kind of worry. I tried to swallow it, told her why I’d come. To claim her arse. To claim it all.

Her laugh is so unlike his. Hollow and dry, the mechanical function of a body that hasn’t felt anything approaching mirth in years. Where his is warm and all-encompassing, hers is frozen, strategic.

She held out the deed to me and asked me if that’s what I’d come for. It was, of course. Among other things. I reached for it. She banished it to her vault.

The details of her rant elude me. I just recall a torrential, furious questioning. Did I think it should be that easy for me? Didn’t I know how hard she’s had to work? Do I think she likes getting on her knees for every member of Dumbledore’s Army? Do I think she wanted to get stuffed by every soldier for the light, just to avoid getting spit on in the hallways? Didn’t I realise I should be on my knees begging for her after everything she’s had to give up to revive her reputation? That I didn’t deserve her, let alone Potter? Why should she help me, when I’m too poor a Slytherin to realise she was using me to knock him down a peg for putting her through all this in the first place?

On and on and on.

And didn’t I see that I hadn’t won at all? That she’d got me to give up my one big chance at love, over an idle threat? Over a suggestion?

Didn’t I know I was in love with him?

Didn’t I know that I was only ever her backup plan, her last resort?

Couldn’t I have guessed she’d have no use for someone so weak, so disloyal, as to be manipulated away from what I had with him?

I’m everything she says and more. Stupidly oblivious, easily distracted, weak. And now I’ve lost everything for it.

The idea of a life without him, the picture of his face, heartbroken and horrified…

I can’t. For all my many failures, I can’t let this become another one. Please don’t let this become another one. I don’t know if I’ll ever recover.

 

 

 

November 29th, Hogwarts Infirmary 

Hey Draco.

I hope you aren’t going to mind me writing in here when if when you wake up, but I really want to talk to you right now, and I don’t know how else to do it.

I keep trying to piece everything together but I just can’t be sure yet if I’ve got it all. It’s such a blur. I gave a statement right after, and they’re going to let me read the Auror reports, cause I guess I was the intended target of the actual curse and they’ll need me to go in front of the Wizengamot and tell them all the same stuff again if they take her in. They’re still deciding whether it was an accident, though I don’t know how anyone could think it wasn’t. They’re trying to be fair to her. Would you like that? I don’t even know for sure.

The smell in here is really gross. I wish they would do something about it. Doesn’t it seem like healing potions should smell better? How much good are they doing if they make everyone want to sick up?

In the report I just said that you were fighting with Pansy, but I didn’t say what you were fighting about and they didn’t ask. They probably still will, in front of the Wizengamot, and then it’ll all be out in the open. I don’t know if you’d like that, either.

Some of the stuff you’ve written in here – it’s pretty mean, Draco. I kind of guessed you were up to something when you started being weirdly nice to me back in September. No offence, not that you’d even necessarily take any at this, but it just really wasn’t like you to just be friendly like that. Picking stuff up for me and saying hi and the like. It just wasn’t very you. And after all these years of fighting, I guess I already knew you pretty well. And Ron and Hermione agreed about all of it, and I guess they know you too. I guess fighting in a war with someone lets you know them pretty well.

Anyway. How much of it did you mean? I know you can’t answer that. I wish you could, though. Cause I’m pretty sure about the early stuff, that you were faking it. You’ve said it, and we all knew it then. It’s later on that’s messing with my head. Did you keep having sex with her? After we kissed? After we did…did you do it again, with her? I know we didn’t say we weren’t going to, with anyone else, but I didn’t think we needed to.

The earlier stuff than that, too. I mean, what you did to that Muggle woman…that was really wrong. I knew you didn’t like charity work and I wouldn’t be real surprised if you had done some of it by magic even though you weren’t supposed to. But knocking her out like that…is that still your attitude towards Muggles?

When we joked about it after, the charity stuff, was that a lie too? Cause it seemed like things started to change between us then. You were being more honest with me, not sucking up and following me around and stuff. And all those Quidditch games. You really did seem different. Less angry, less like you were trying to push me away. Like you wanted to be there. Like you liked taking the piss which, for Merlin’s sake, Draco, I liked it too. There aren’t a lot of people who will just treat me like that. Like a normal person instead of the saviour. And you always have, except when you’re taking the piss about that too. Do you know how much I like that you’re just you around me? That you hate doing charity (even if you were beyond an arsehole to that old lady) and you make fun of everything and you’re not walking around just pretending like the war never happened? It’s not that I didn’t know you might have been trying to fuck with me, but there were so many moments where I was just sure that you weren’t. Where I liked spending time with you so much, and then wanted you so much, that it was worth it to take the chance. And it seemed you liked it too. You smiled, and sometimes it seemed like you were scared the same way I was. In a good way. Like when I took my shirt off, on the pitch that time. I’m glad you weren’t just grossed out, though I guess I know that by now. But I was scared, cause I would’ve – I wanted you to touch me then, already. And I think, having read all this, that you wanted to, too, and you were just scared of what it meant. But were you really that angry afterwards? Was it because you were being a bad Slytherin, or because you were being a good one?

What you did to Neville…I don’t even know what to say to you about that. I guess on that one it’s good you’re not awake. Not that – I do want you to wake up. I wish that you hadn’t been hurt in the first place. But right now I’m really angry at you about what you did to him. He was just trying something out, and there’s nothing wrong with that. And you set him up for it. His face when I told him I had your journal – he looked like the whole world was gonna fall down. He told me that you gave the pictures back yesterday, but what if things had gone differently? Were you just going to keep them forever? Make him do stuff for you forever?

You didn’t even need to do that. Yeah, people told me to look out for you, but people have always been doing that. Did you really think I would just do whatever someone told me too? Of all the things, that makes me think you knew me the least. Cause by the time you did all that – it wasn’t even that you thought flashing me in the showers was all it was gonna take, though that was pretty dumb when I’d already told the whole world that I care more about how people are treated than about superficial stuff. But then you said that stuff about extended hands and you were right. I felt bad because you were right. I hadn’t been doing what I told other people to do. You threw me off a little bit there and it took me a little while to get straightened out about it. But I liked that you called me out. It was good for me. It made me better, and I think sometimes that’s kind of what you’ve done best, even if you drive me absolutely fucking mad in the process. But I wouldn’t just shut you out forever over it. Maybe you don’t know that, but I wouldn’t have. What you had Neville say didn’t even make that much difference. And you were just going to torture him for years over it anyway?

I’m really mad at you, Draco. Really mad. And scared. Can you just wake up so I can be mad at you in person?

 

 

 

December 1st, Hogwarts Infirmary

Madame Pomfrey says you’re going to be out of it a while longer. Pansy’s spell cut pretty deep and you lost a lot of blood. Some damage to your internal organs, too. There’ll be a big scar this time. I bet you’ll hate that, but it was just too late and took too long to get you here.

Your mum came by yesterday and earlier today. She’s really upset. Goyle came by earlier and just sat a while. Blaise did too, though he asked a bunch of questions and then realised there’d been a scuffle at Quidditch practice and went off to comfort the players. Is he really always like that?

Your mum thought you’d probably want to know what happened when you woke up. There’ll be the reports and things, but she thought I should tell you too. I think maybe she just wants to know, but I don’t know what you’d want me to tell her or if there are things that would get you in trouble, so I just told her I’d write it down.

I got your letter while I was in London and couldn’t really believe it. I wasn’t sure if you were lying or not, or just messing me about. Honestly, I almost didn’t read it, thought about just chucking it in the fire. I think I partly read it because I was hoping there was something in there that could make me hate you instead of being heartbroken, so I could even be in the house without wanting to burn it all down. Then I started reading this and the first part just made me angrier. You were so cold, Draco. Though I guess you know that.

I didn’t finish it till Sunday morning and then I wasn’t sure what to do. I came back to school like usual and you weren’t at dinner or in the common room. Pansy was at dinner, which I was glad about, since at least it meant you weren’t having sex with her in the actual moment, but then she disappeared and I got a little worried. Guess I needed to know.

I tried your room but you weren’t there. You weren’t in the library or at the Quidditch Pitch, but I’d seen that sometimes went to the Owlery to write. Guess if anyone saw you it would just look like a letter.

You were there, but so was Pansy. I could hear you both yelling as I was coming up the stairs. I threw on my cloak before I got there, and when I could see you both she was all pressed up against you, trying to feel you up from the looks of it. You were telling her that you didn’t want her anymore. You said that pushing me away might have been the biggest regret of your life, and that you had enough of those already, and you didn’t want to be with the kind of person who wanted you to make choices you’d regret later. She said it was just because you thought you could do better with me than with her. You said that you would do better with me in every possible sense, not least of all that I’d actually make you happy.

It was good that you said all that, you know. For me, anyway.

Pansy got really furious then, sort of shoved you into the wall and jumped back and I saw that she’d pulled her wand. You pulled yours too and tried to disarm her, told her she was being ridiculous.

That only made her madder. She tried a couple more – a Bat-Bogey, not really her area, and a Confundus. You blocked them. I was behind her, but if I cast anything you’d have seen it anyway, so I pulled off the cloak. Better range of motion that way. But you stopped in your tracks when I did it, and she looked to see where you were looking, and when she saw me she got really, really mad. Had a few choice words – piece of work, that one – and she said if you were hurt it was all my fault in the first place, for making things so hard for all of you. Which I hope you know is rubbish, though I guess that’s another one of those conversations for when you wake up.

I told her to shove it, basically, and she got even angrier and made this kind of incoherent comment about seeing where you’d shoved it, and then she cast Sectumsempra at me.

I dodged, stupidly into a corner, and she cast it again straightaway. And then you jumped in front of me.

It was really stupid of you, Draco. Really stupid and a little bit brave. She would’ve just grazed me but you, moving in the path of the spell like you were and kind of sideways, and closer to her, it got you all the way from shoulder to hip in an instant.

You couldn’t even really land, just fell to the floor, and you were bleeding, just gushing blood. She took one look at you and got really pale and kind of green. She told me it had never happened and that if I ever told anyone she’d hurt me. I can’t say I’m especially scared of her, though. And then she ran.

You were fading so quickly and you started spitting up blood. You were coughing, and I was trying to close the cut and send a Patronus to Madame Pomfrey, and I barely heard you, but you said that you loved me. You had just about passed out by the time I got the Patronus off, but I said I loved you too. I don’t know if you heard me.

Madame Pomfrey came as quick as she could with Dittany and Blood Replenishing Potion and a million charms to get you stabilised enough to move. And here you are.

I’d say it was funny that it was Sectumsempra, but it’s really not funny at all. If I caused one, it at least seems fair that I should stay with you while you recover from the next. And I’ve woken up here enough times to know that it’s scary to do it alone. And I don’t want you to be scared. I think we’ve both had enough of that.

Except I still am, a bit. Madame Pomfrey says it’s normal for you to take some time to heal from injuries like this, and that she has to keep you asleep, but that we won’t know the extent of the damage until you wake up. And I hate just seeing you lying here like this. I’d rather tell you all this in person.

 

 

 

December 4th, Hogwarts Infirmary

They got her, Draco. I still don’t know if you’d like that they took her in, but seeing what she did, you might. And I think you would’ve liked how dramatic it was.

Pansy’s been really playing up how sad she is, telling everyone it was a terrible accident and that she meant to cast Rictumsempra instead of Sectumsempra, like those two are that easy to confuse. She had organised a big healing circle kind of a thing in the Great Hall after dinner so people could send healing energy or some such rot. Mostly so that she could cry in public. She was giving this great big speech about how she had tried to bring you over to the side of the light and how much she missed you and how you were an example of what happened to people who didn’t move forward with the times, standing up on a bench in front of everyone.

I met with the Aurors again yesterday and – you might want to kill me, though I hope you don’t – let them see some of this journal. It was the best record there was of how she’d been behaving towards you the whole time and why she’d actually want to cast a Sectumsempra. I let them see my memories of it, too, if it makes you feel any better. Between your records and my memory of the event, they could tell that she’d done it on purpose. Also, the ground unicorn horn is a violation of a whole bunch of statutes from the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, and Misuse of Magic and Intoxicating Substances.

So the Aurors showed up right in the middle of her speech, and she just looked so confused, probably on purpose, then told them they were rude to interrupt a healing energy whatever. Savage and Williamson didn’t like that much and arrested her on the spot, in front of everyone. She tried to throw that Hallows charm to Blaise, yelling some rubbish about keeping it safe and carrying on the circle, but he must be smarter than he lets on sometimes, because he wasn’t having any of it. It just fell on the floor and the powder spilled everywhere. Think it’s safe to say she’s well and truly done for, at least for a while.

I’d be happier about it if it undid the actual curse, though. It matters a lot less if you won’t wake up. Madame Pomfrey took you off all the potions yesterday and said you can wake up any time, but that you won’t until your body’s healed enough. That it could be just a day or two more of rest, or it could be that you lost too much blood and were out for too long. It’s not that I’m not still mad at you over some of this stuff, but I don’t want that awful conversation to be the last one we ever have. And I still really need to know if you were telling the truth, for sure. And I really want to tell you I love you again, so you can hear it.

 

 

 

December 11th, Hogwarts Infirmary 

You’re asleep again right now, but Merlin it’s been good to hear your voice. Madame Pomfrey says not to wear you out and I haven’t given this back yet, so I don’t think you’ll mind too much if I write to you a little longer.

It’s been three days since you first properly woke up. You’d stirred some before then and said a few words – some of the best words I’ve ever heard – but it took you longer to shake it all off and really wake up. Draco, it’s been so good to see you again. It’s not everyone who could take the piss from a hospital bed.

Madame Pomfrey says you can’t finish classes this term, but if you make it up over Christmas you’ll be able to pick back up after break. Not so bad, except if you have to do homework in the infirmary.

I kind of want to write about what it was like when you woke up, but I think you’d just think it was mushy sap and laugh at me. And you were there. Hopefully it won’t be too soppy to tell you that I hope what I was feeling showed, cause it was…after all that waiting and hoping, to see you actually wake up and hear you say my name, and you looked so disbelieving, like it was in a dream. And then asked me if it was a dream, and your face when I said no, that I was there, and when I got to tell you I love you, and you said it back, and I think you almost cried. Okay, definitely getting into overly too soppy territory.

But it was really, really good.

I’m hoping you get out of here before the semester’s over so we can spend some time together alone. I’ve asked Madame Pomfrey if it’s likely. Unfortunately, I think she maybe thought that I didn’t mean the question in a totally virtuous way. She’s got much stricter about kicking me out when she goes to bed. Why is it worse having Madame Pomfrey know than the Aurors? Still, I think it is. Hopefully you won’t mind too much that I really didn’t mean the question in a totally virtuous way.

Hopefully, too, you’ll be up and about by then. It’s not just because of those reasons. We haven’t really been flying together since things all started to sour, and I miss facing off against you. No one keeps me on my toes like you do. And I wouldn’t mind showing you how to stain those sanded planks. It’d be pretty funny. You should still do it, though. I’d like it if you did. Like to have another weekend with you. So maybe, when I do give this back, you could consider it an invitation?

 

 

 

December 18th, Hogwarts Express

I’m finally up and about, and Madame Pomfrey has decided that I’m well enough to return with the rest of the Hogwarts contingent. To say the return trip is different from the journey here would be a bit of an understatement. Sharing a carriage with Harry would have been unimaginable in September, never mind a not entirely hostile visit from Granger and Weasley. Harry has been hovering relentlessly all the while – for days, really – insisting that I rest and eat well and take the last of my potions.

I adore him. Even in his fumbling attempts at imitating some combination of the Weasley matriarch, the headmistress, and the school nurse, he’s thoroughly charming. He’s so entirely sincere about it. There’s no coolness about him, no pretense. Oftentimes the opposite. There’ve been a fair few rows, though there’s little for me to say other than, “I’m sorry.” When he’s annoyed with my stubbornness, it shows through. Or, it doesn’t even show through, he just tells me it’s the case and to shut up and take the potions. It’s not especially Slytherin of me to transparently obey, but I still haven’t sorted an answer to his question about whether I want to be especially Slytherin. It wasn’t a bad question though. His acuity continues to surprise me, if not as much as it once did.

In that vein, he thought I was looking a bit hungry and has gone off to chase down the trolley. To his credit, he was right. I’ve been hungrier in the last week than in the preceding months, and he’s decided it’s part of my recovery to indulge every whim.

Or almost every whim. Some bridges remain uncrossed. Or un-recrossed. Once he’d intimated anything to Madame Pomfrey, she knew exactly where to place the emphasis in her talk about refraining from strenuous activity during convalescence.

But all is not lost. Harry stood by his invitation. Had repeated it even before he returned this to me. I’ll be returning to Grimmauld Place for the New Year, though my injuries may make a convenient return if he really means for me to stain planks. Or, more likely, not. It just makes him so happy, menial labour. Bloody hell.

So, plank staining is in my future. And awkward attempts at détente with his friends. Another apology to Longbottom. Finding out whether my fellow Slytherins will come round on a permanent basis, beyond Goyle’s suspicious, tentative lurking and Blaise’s total laissez-faire that counts more as not giving a fuck than any sort of actual support. I suppose I have to give Harry that one, that his friends have stuck by him. Makes them seen worth apologising to, nowadays.

And beyond all those things, there will be flying, for which Madame Pomfrey gave the all-clear if I wait till after Christmas. More of Harry’s quite decent breakfasts. Perhaps – I think definitely, if his response to the kisses we’ve been able to steal are any indication – there’ll be another attempt at going to bed together.

First, though, I have to get to the New Year. Mother has me taking a portkey to the Chalet, and Father will be joining us there for Christmas. To say I was excited might be an understatement. A vast understatement. But I’ve just got to make it through. And then – as there seems to be now, carrying an armful of sandwiches – there will be Harry.

 

 

 

December 27th, Malfoy Chalet

The rush of Christmas is over at last. I’d assumed it would be a barren, lonely sort of holiday. That was a vast underestimation of Mother’s determination and Father’s pride. Instead of a funereal affair, it’s been bursting with cheer, only some of it obviously forced.

It’s not that the routines aren’t different, in ways large and small. These elves haven’t decorated for Christmas in three generations and Father and Mother have had more than a few words to say about their attempts. The dining room is smaller, less formal. The meals look less grand. But considering what (or who) has been eaten in the Manor dining room and how…perhaps that’s for the best. Perhaps the ostentation isn’t as important as Mother’s tearful, grateful toast about the unexpected, rather unbelievable, luck of being together at all this Christmas.

And if Father’s, “Cheers,” was more than a bit slurred, as his speech has been for days, and if Mother’s quiet crying is not constrained to holiday toasts…well. We are all still alive, and drunk and crying is still a fair sight better than living under threat of being eaten by a giant snake or tortured by his master. And I doubt, somehow, that living in that shadow of those years would mitigate either form of hysterics.

Perhaps it’s inconsiderate of me to think that way. The Manor meant so much to them; it represents so many years of memories before Voldemort’s return, before it became more a prison than a home. But then I wonder, now, if it ever was a home, as opposed to another thing to be won and controlled. It’s not that they’re unloving, but when I compare the rigidity of my childhood to the warmth and ease of Harry’s attic…the contrasts are stark, and not only for their rather different approaches to interior design.

Speaking of, if my writing has fallen off of late, it’s not only because my parents are determined to keep me engaged at all hours, but because my few spare moments have been devoted to writing to him. He’s not an especially eloquent correspondent but, especially given Granger’s rather pointed scoffing when he promised to write, I think I’m lucky to be getting letters from him at all. And while he may be less inclined towards poetry than recounting the particulars of his holiday at The Burrow, the more imaginative details he includes are really quite enough to be going on with.

Whether for better or worse, the owls were coming and going with enough frequency that my parents began asking questions. They may not have been overjoyed with the answer – Father seems rather committed to forgetting it and Mother’s anxious glances are perhaps not the ideal break from her tears – but when I told them I was going to London for New Years they didn’t object. Mother did ask if they could reach me at Blaise’s, but even after I corrected her assumption…nothing. Which is, I suppose, better than many of the alternatives.

It’s three more days until I see him, though. Two and a half, even. He’ll be at Grimmauld Place after tomorrow, and the urge to go to him as soon as possible is both present and strong.

 

 

 

January 1st, 12 Grimmauld Place

My third, of I hope many, mornings waking up at Grimmauld Place. I’d be tempted to suspect the house is charmed to put me in a good mood but, especially given that raging bitch of a portrait downstairs, I think it’s less to do with brick and mortar and more to do with the company.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first arrived. I hadn’t seen Harry since Platform 9 and ¾, he was beginning to prepare for last night’s New Year’s party for his friends, and we’d been apart, in one way or another, for so long.

He was a bit nervous at first. It surprised me; I’d stopped thinking of him as the fumbling boy I once imagined. He’s so certain, so willing to admit to what he wants. But I suppose he’d had an interval to think things through, to wonder if I’d changed my mind or if things would be different between us.

He started giving me the tour again, though images of this house were already burned into my memory. He showed me to a guest room, one of three he’s redone since I was here last. It was ornately decorated, something that could’ve belonged in the Manor once upon a time. He asked if I wanted to stay there, said it seemed a little more my style, like the kind of life I might want. Thank Merlin I knew what he was alluding to. We hadn’t fought much over that part of this journal, but it was interesting to know it had stayed with him, worried him. I suppose I hesitated, because he finished with, very quietly, “…or the attic?”

Of course I chose the attic. I’ve wanted nothing more than to wake up there again, with him at my side.

We set my things down and stood around a bit nervously. He suggested dinner. We ate. He suggested a game. We played chess (I won). He asked if I wanted desert, or a nightcap, or a cup of tea. I asked if he was alright. Nervous, he said, but alright. I guessed, correctly, that he wasn’t nervous about a cup of tea.

We went to bed.

I thought I had seen it all, had it all, when we made love the last time. The first time. Being with him was so different from anything I’d experienced before. He was so open, so vulnerable, so thoroughly naked. I’d imagined that’s what it would be.

I hadn’t accounted for the passion that burns in everything he does, for how he would treat a second time differently to the first. For how it could be now that so much else is changed between us. But it was even, for lack of a better descriptor, more than the last time.

He was visibly nervous. Perhaps for knowing what we would be doing, or for remembering the last time. He dragged his feet getting upstairs, kept having one last thing to do or find or put away. To be fair, I didn’t intervene. I may’ve been a bit nervous as well. There was so much at stake.

We both got ready for bed. A different sort of anticipation. Changing into pyjamas with our backs to each other, folding my shirt while I could hear him throw his over the back of a nearby chair. Hearing him turn down the sheets and slip under them while I was still setting my shoes next to my trunk.

It was totally dark this time, but there’s been a bit of snow this week and the street lamps outside reflected off it to bathe the room in a yellowish glow, bright enough for me to see my way to the bed. I slipped in beside him and reached for his hand. I said his name. May have asked it, really, more like a question. He squeezed my fingers between his. I turned to face him.

He kissed me. It was a searching kiss, with an edge of caution, as though he knew what he wanted and what I wanted but, I think, still hesitated over the possibility that I was injured. I reassured him that I was fine. He asked if I was sure. I was.

He nodded and reached for me again. This time I beat him to it. I pressed him back into the mattress and kissed him with everything I had. Any hesitation was gone. He reached for my hips and pulled himself against me, pressing his hips against mine, showing me that he was half hard already. He slipped a hand between us to unbutton my pyjama top and pushed me back to remove it.

He looked voracious above me. It hadn’t been like that the last time, when I’d taken the lead. He was hungry for something, determined to get it. He set to kissing me, to stripping me down, to running his hands over every inch of my skin. Every inch. He massaged my calves as he licked up my thigh. His thumb dug into my hipbone as he licked my nipples. He gripped one of my shoulders as he sucked at my collarbone.

And then his hand moved down again, and down, to the top of my leg, and he wedged a knee between mine and gave me a questioning look. I nodded.

His hand slipped into the cleft of my arse, and I felt him fumbling around in search of my arsehole. I spread my legs for him, feeling the heat radiating from his body, and he found it quick enough. I tightened, this time, when he found it.

That seemed to throw him, the thought that I might be nervous, too. It wasn’t a question of physical capacity, or any worry that he might have injured me, as he later confessed to having suspected. Just a bit of anxiety at the thought of it. The possibility that, after all of this, he might somehow find this part of things to be lacking.

He was very careful to prepare me. Overly careful, to be candid. He used quite a bit of lubricant, which made his fingers a bit chilly on entrance, and he was easily startled out of his rhythm at first. Until he realised the noises I was making weren’t in pain. Not in the least. Until I asked him to add another, to go harder.

Then his hunger returned. He moved so he was kneeling between my legs, pushing into me, twisting his fingers beautifully, intuitively, to hit the exact right spot. Even in the hazy reflected light coming in from the streets I could see his desire, the degree to which he was enthralled at the sight of me, rolling against his hand as I was.

I wanted him to go on forever. I was hard as a rock and could feel the dried precome on my stomach as it leaked rather copiously from my cock. He hadn’t touched me yet, and I was ready to beg for it. Had I been able to speak, I might’ve.

Instead, I barely gasped out my request for him to fuck me. He froze for a moment, then, I think so absorbed in the fingering that he’d forgotten about his own erection. Which was bobbing, gorgeous and flushed and full, in front of him as he looked me over. He asked if I was sure. “Yes.” “Really sure?” “Yes.” “You know I’ve never?” I had to take a deep breath, close my eyes, gather my patience, try not to stroke myself. I could feel a whine building in my throat as he withdrew his hand entirely. I tried reassurance. “You’re doing fine so far.” “Really?” Another deep breath. “Yes. If you’d just get on with it.” He ran a fingertip over my arsehole. “Are you sure?” I clenched my jaw and was just about to take yet another meditative breath when I opened my eyes. He was teasing me.

It may have taken me a moment to recover, and mirth was written on his face. I failed to find anything useful to say – the necessary blood was elsewhere at the time – and instead growled out a simple, slow, “Fuck. Me. Now.”

I looked up to find the humour edged with trepidation. “You know I’ve really never?” I did. “You’re sure, really?” So sure. I’ve rarely been that certain of anything.

I pulled him to me and kissed him again, wrapping my legs around him and arching my back so he could feel the sticky head of my erection against his stomach, so that it would brush against his own. It had the desired effect. When he pulled away his pupils were huge, his focus singular. I pulled my knees to my chest, spreading myself for him. He was hypnotised for a moment, then nodded, edging forward to rest the head of his cock against my hole. He eased in slowly, slowly, stretching me open, pressing into me, pushing my knees back as he leaned forward to kiss me, to ask me if I was okay.

I was, and urged him onwards. His pace was agonizingly, deliciously slow. I don’t think he believed I was alright until he was fully seated.

To say I was alright, though, would be an understatement. He fit perfectly, just enough of a stretch, and I felt wonderfully full.

From the look of him – eyes shut, thighs quivering, breath coming in shallow gasps – it was an understatement for him too. His eyes were all pupil when he opened them next. He tried to tell me; “Draco, you feel, you feel…” I knew. I told him so. “Wait till you start moving.”

He nodded, almost shaking, and withdrew, and then pressed into me again with one hard thrust, and a whimpering, shaky groan. “Fuck, you feel…”

It was beyond words for me too. They weren’t necessary, as he moved in me again and again, gathering speed. He braced his hands over my shoulders and began pounding into me properly. The whole world seemed to fade away, and there was nothing there but the feel of him fucking my arse, the smell of him, the moans and whimpers and obscene mumblings in my ears.

There were more than a few on my part too, I’ll grant. He fucked me like none other. His world seemed to have disappeared as well; there was nothing in his sights but me, his awe at the feeling of my arse around him was obvious and overwhelming. He thrust into me as though he might die if he had to stop, as if he might let the world burn if it meant another minute inside of me.

I reached down to stroke myself eventually. His jaw dropped at that, but I was – we were – well past taboos, with him up my arse and my belly button half full of precome. He sped up as I did, until his hips were hammering into me and the bed was shaking with the force of it. And then he stilled, and groaned, and his arms were shaking above me, and I finished myself off with a twist of the wrist and the sort of obscene noise I’d like to pretend never to have made, but hope to make again for him, and often.

When we finished, he traced the scar that lingers on my chest. Kissed it. He joked that X marks the spot. The spot being my heart. His sense of humour is completely awful. Totally plebeian and hackneyed. But he seems so pleased with himself that it’s really best left alone.

It was all incredible, really. The perfect sort of rough, eager fucking. The terrible jokes that are so foreign to me and so strangely amusing to him. Falling asleep with a hand on his skin, and vice-versa. All of it followed, the next morning, by the perfect instructional round of fellatio and fingering for all.

Which would also bear description, but now is not the time to dispense with a memory-inspired erection. But if, Merlin forbid, I’m ever in hospital again, Harry, don’t think I didn’t notice that there were a few particularly well-handled pages when you were last finished with this. Perhaps something new to entertain you if you’re forced to sit vigil by my bedside? Or happen to be snooping around? Don’t let it go to your head. You’ll owe me another just like it when I wake up. Or find that these pages are dog-eared, too.

His New Year’s party was, obviously, last night. I was transparently nervous about that bit. I’d written Neville another letter of apology, tried to feel things out with Lovegood when she stopped by on the train, and had already been doing my best to get on with Granger and Weasley, but the lot of them together, and with all these other DA types, was another task altogether. With Harry, at least, there were public editorials declaring his interest in reconciliation. No such luck with the rest of them, and no reason to believe they had interest in anything other than putting me through my paces for touching their saviour.

Fortunately, they really don’t see him that way. More fortunately still, Gryffindors are exceptionally merry drunks. The coolness I felt from most of them faded as the Firewhiskey flowed. The remaining Weasley twin and the she-Weasel had been particularly cold at the start of the night. With good cause. But by evening’s end, George had an arm around my neck, and one around Finnigan’s, as we sang “A Cauldron Full of Hot, Strong Love.” It was a remarkable evening.

Most of them have stayed the night, finding their way to couches and guest rooms. The house still has a way to go, but I suspect Harry will make a home of it yet. We may’ve christened the kitchen last night, after Granger insisted we help Harry’s elf put away the food. They’d all moved on towards bed, and Harry, with a mischievous glint in his eye, demonstrated his vastly improved oral skills while I gripped the dining table for dear life. A quick study, my Harry.

We’ll start with brunch, which Harry really is quite expert at, and which he promises will cure everyone’s New Year’s Day woes. I may’ve brewed a batch of hangover potion at the Chalet, just in case his rashers don’t quite live up to that claim.

I suspect we’ll spend the day seeing everyone out and recovering. There’s not much else left to do. Tomorrow we’ll have a belated Christmas. Granger nudged him several times last night on the subject of archaic property laws, something to do with forfeiture when someone is convicted of a crime, the procedure by which the Ministry can claim their property and auction it for legal costs – newest acquisitions first, which in Pansy’s case would be the Manor. I wouldn’t put it past Harry to do such a thing.

But I find that what I really want is a new journal. It has been an eventful half-year, but it’s well past time to pursue events of a different sort. A life of a different sort. Turn over a new page, as it were.

If Harry’s clichéd sense of humour is getting to me already, I don’t know what I’ll do. Except go down for breakfast, I suppose, and be glad he’ll let me kiss him over his morning tea.

 

 

 

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