Thankfully the last week and a half of July passed without incident. It was funny, after everyone had found out about Harry and Draco deliberately putting themselves in the line of fire to catch the saboteur, the atmosphere had changed again. Harry had the sinking suspicion that someone being after him was far more normal and easy to deal with for pupils of Hogwarts than themselves being the target. Hence, as Draco had suggested, he just went with it.
Of course the end of July was very significant to Harry.
As birthdays went, he had not really had any fabulously great ones, having spent most of them with the Dursleys. His eighteenth was his first where he was with family that he would ever consider introducing to anyone else as his kin. He was pretty sure it was difficult to miss quite how excited he was by this prospect and Draco had teased him mercilessly all day on the thirtieth about how he was acting like an eight year old. Getting to sleep had been especially hard since he had not even had classes to wear him out, because the day before his birthday was a Saturday.
However, he had eventually dropped off, but he had not slept for long. At midnight Draco had woken him, and wished him a happy birthday in a very adult and direct manner. So much so that he had fallen into a very deep, very happy sleep two hours later, and he was still smiling at breakfast.
"Don't tell me what your first present was," Ron said the moment he sat down opposite Harry in the great hall, "I can guess. Happy birthday, mate."
"Thanks," he said since he was having trouble thinking of anything else.
Harry was so used to celebrating his birthday alone with owled presents that he was somewhat overwhelmed with everyone wishing him a happy birthday. So far, none of those staying for the summer had failed to say something when they came in and sat down for breakfast.
"Happy birthday, Harry," Hermione greeted and pecked him on the cheek before sitting down next to Ron.
Since he had just taken a bite of toast, this time all he could do was smile. Draco just gave him a look and shook his head, but there was no verbal or mental communication. Harry was pretty sure his soulmate was enjoying watching and feeling his reaction to the whole scenario, and he was quite happy with that.
It was not long after this that the morning owls arrived. Since it was Sunday there weren't as many as there might have been on a week day, but the Wizarding world did not shut down even as much as the Muggle world did at the weekends. An official looking brown owl landed in front of Harry and offered what looked at first glance to be a Muggle envelope, stamp and all.
Taking it and feeding the owl a piece of sausage, Harry read the typed address on the front, which consisted of his name, care of what sounded like a solicitor's office. Above this there was a handwritten addition indicating Hogwarts.
[That looks Muggle,] was Draco's distinct opinion on the matter.
[I think it is,] Harry replied, turning it over and sliding a nail under the brown flap at the end.
Several people were watching with interest as he pulled out the sheaf of papers within and two photos fell onto the table. These days he was so used to wizarding photos that the fact that the pictures fell face up and then didn't move, rather surprised him. Both prints showed a nice looking Victorian house from the front and the back. Not having a clue what this was all about, Harry opened the papers and looked at the covering letter.
Dear Mr Potter,
congratulations on your eighteenth birthday. It is with great pleasure that Graham and Clarkes are able to now dispatch the duty which it has been our honour to undertake for Dr and Mrs P. Evans. It was Dr and Mrs Evan's wish that a significant portion of their estate be held in trust for their grandchildren until the youngest of these aforementioned heirs reached their eighteenth birthday, there to be divided between however many grandchildren were still living.
You, Mr Potter and Mr D. Dursley are the only two beneficiaries and hence please find enclosed the details of Evergreen House, pictures enclosed. It was Dr Evans' wish that the house go to the youngest of his grandchildren, and that the trust fund of £50,000 be divided among the rest.
To maintain the house while in our care, tenants were installed and their lease will terminate at the end of the month. If you wish to take up residence the keys may be collected from our offices, or Graham and Clarkes will be happy to remain as intermediaries and arrange for further tenants.
If these arrangements are suitable, please contact our offices at your nearest convenience to arrange the transfer of documentation and sundries to your keeping.
Partner - Graham and Clarkes
Harry picked up one of the photos and really looked at it.
[We own a house,] he said, rather surprised and passed the picture Draco.
It was all a shock. With the Dursleys the Evans were rarely mentioned and Harry had had no idea what his grandparents had been like, let alone that there was anything waiting for him in trust. Petunia had always spoken of them favouring Lily and never a kind word was said about them, but if they had left property and money in trust for all of their grandchildren, Harry was not so sure they only favoured one daughter.
[I never met my grandparents,] he told Draco as he mulled over this latest revelation; [they died around the same time as my parents. I don't really know what happened to them, maybe Dumbledore knows.]
[You should ask him,] his soulmate replied with a supportive smile. [Looks like a nice house. All Muggle I assume?]
[I guess so,] Harry replied, since all the evidence was pointing in that direction, although with a witch as a child his grandparents would have legally been allowed to have some magical things around the house.
He looked up and saw several of his friends look away at the same time, which made him smile. There was no such thing as privacy at a communal breakfast table and he thought it was rather endearing that people were trying to make out that there was.
"My grandparents left me a house," he said aloud before anyone died of curiosity.
"Can I see?" Hermione was the first to give in once Harry had all but given his permission.
Draco handed over the picture with an amused grin as every girl on Hermione's side of the table crowded round to see the small photo.
[Won't see that again for half an hour,] was Draco's comment as the female contingent began to pass judgement.
Ron was smiling when Harry looked over at him, but there was a shadow in his friend's eyes and it suddenly occurred to Harry that he had probably just rubbed Ron's nose in his wealth again. If it was up to him he would hand over a huge pile of galleons to his best friend in a heartbeat, but Ron had grown into the Weasley pride and it would never work.
* * *
Harry was pretty sure he had never seen so many balloons. Nearly the whole floor was covered with them, of all colours, shapes and sizes. And there weren't only balloons, but garlands and banners and the biggest table of food in the history of Hogwarts if Harry was any judge. He had thought they had made a show when they held the inter-house bonding party, as he mentally referred to it, but this was even bigger.
"Wow," was the only thing he could think to say.
Hermione and Neville had co-opted the Room of Requirement for the day, since there were no classes on a Sunday and they had outdone themselves.
When they had told him they were having a party for his birthday he had been a little unsure, but also delighted. What he hadn't expected was the location or how many people were there. Hermione had clearly invited everyone who was staying at Hogwarts for the summer.
"Happy Birthday, Harry," Ron announced and suddenly the air was full of streamers and cheers.
Seamus was once again in charge of music and 'Happy Birthday' began to play loudly, with everyone joining in. Harry could feel the heat in his face and he was probably blushing bright red, but he couldn't keep the huge smile off his face either.
As with the school song, when a group of Hogwarts students all sang together, they didn't always match, but Harry didn't care. He was pretty sure his heart was fit to burst. It wasn't just the song either, he could actually feel the energy of everyone aimed right at him. There didn't seem to be a dark emotion in the room and he lowered his barriers a little to let it flood in.
[Happy Birthday, Love,] Draco said, wrapping an arm around him.
[This is the best birthday ever.]
"Speech," someone yelled when the singing finished and everyone laughed.
[I can't do a speech,] Harry said as he instantly panicked.
[Just say something nice,] Draco told him.
"Um," Harry said and caused everyone to laugh again. "Thanks for coming. As Professor Dumbledore would say, 'Tuck in'."
Another cheer went up and Seamus took the cue to start the music proper. Harry was sure it was going to be a great party.
* * *
Draco couldn't help smiling at the delighted happy feeling coming from Harry. The party had been a huge success. The best part had been when Harry had seen the large chocolate cake the house elves had made for him specially. It had had candles and everything and Draco was pretty sure Harry had almost cried. He'd use that knowledge to tease his soulmate another day.
Right then he had more designs on Harry's virtue than on making him blush. There had been something he'd wanted to try ever since Harry had mentioned it. The fact Harry found his voice inordinately sexy appealed to him and he had been planning out a few ideas in his head for some time.
"Harry," he said, pitching his voice low and melodic.
Harry turned from where he had been eyeing the bed, smiling at him.
"Thank you for a lovely day," Harry said, "it's been brilliant."
"And it's not over yet," Draco said, returning the smile with one of his own that was much wickeder. "Why don't you take your clothes off for me love?"
Harry's pupils dilated almost immediately and his moth fell open just slightly.
"It's not really my birthday anymore," he stammered.
The party had gone on past midnight, but Draco didn't care.
"Not the detail I'm interested in at the moment," Draco replied, keeping his voice low and his eyes firmly on Harry. "We'll grandfather this in on a technicality. It's more of my present to myself anyway, I know what's under those jeans."
Harry's adam's apple bobbed.
"Take them off for me," Draco continued, his tone coaxing, but just a little commanding as well.
He knew Harry liked it when he took charge, the only person Harry was comfortable giving over complete control to. They both had trust issues the size of planets, but not with each other.
Under Draco's watchful gaze, Harry fumbled to get himself out of his own clothes. It wasn't exactly the dance of the seven veils, but it was just as erotic for Draco. Harry's faith in him, the trust and love, were more of a turn on than any amount of eroticism.
"My, my, Harry," Draco said as Harry's erection bobbed free of the hastily removed clothes, "that was quick. Were you, maybe, contemplating my virtue before we made it back here."
These days it was very easy to get Harry interested in sex, actually, truth be told, it was easy to encourage either of them into sex, but Harry was definitely the worst. However, Harry was full erect already, which was fast even for him.
"You dance sinfully well," Harry admitted.
"And were you going to tell me about your ample problem?"
"It's been a long day, I didn't want to assume."
"Oh, Harry, love, it's never too long a day when a prize like you is on offer."
He made sure to let his gaze rest on Harry's cock for a good few seconds.
"Climb on to the bed for me and lay back."
Harry did as he was asked, all lean limbs and wiry muscle, and Draco drank in the whole view.
"You have a very beautiful body, Harry," he said, stepping up to the side of the bed.
Even as he spoke he saw doubt about that flicker across Harry's face. Draco had to squelch down the desire to destroy the people who had spent Harry's entire childhood making him feel inadequate; now was not the time. One of his missions in life was to make sure Harry knew quite how beautiful he was, especially to him.
"So beautiful I can barely stop myself touching, and you know how I value my self control. I want to kiss every inch, taste every last millimetre of skin, but I won't let myself ... yet. First I want to tell you exactly what I'm going to do."
Harry moaned ever so quietly and Draco smiled.
"I think I will start with your neck," he went on, "that spot to the right that makes you shiver. I won't let you move as I trail little kisses all down your collar bone. I know you'll want to touch back, but you won't be allowed to, not until I say. Do you think you'll be able to do that?"
He looked Harry in the eye and his soulmate just made a non-committal humming sound. All the green of those incredible irises was almost lost completely in black now as Harry gave himself over to desire.
"I know how sensitive your nipples are, they're so hard already. I shall use my tongue on them as I run my hands all over your chest until you can barely contain yourself. Until you're desperate."
To make his point he ran one finger up the side of Harry's leg.
"Do you think you will beg?"
"Oh god yes."
The response was all but explosive. Draco smiled again.
"Only when you do will I move on," he continued, licking his lips in appreciation as Harry's cock twitched very noticeably. "I'm going to take my time sucking ... and licking ... and fondling that long, thick cock of yours. I'm going to make you so hard you forget your own name. All you'll be able to think about is me."
He paused and allowed Harry to stare at him.
"And," he continued, pausing for effect, "when all you can do is moan in need, I'll climb on top and sink down onto you, taking every inch in one long stroke."
Harry whimpered. This time when he smiled Draco showed all his teeth; he had Harry right where he wanted him. His voice really did seem to have a magical effect on Harry. He wondered how far he could take Harry before he even properly touched him. It was going to be fun to find out.