The moment Nagini's teeth met his skin and ripped his throat out (more or less), his protective walls crumbled down and his mind was blasted wide open. All the shields he had perfected over the last decades were blown to pieces. He felt his life drain out of his body and a little startled he realized that he wasn't even afraid to die. He closed his eyes, waiting for the end when he heard him. Him. In his last moments on this earth he had to be disturbed by him. The famous boy-who-lived. The bloody brat who'd made his days a living hell and his nights...well, another kind of hell.
The young man who had been more courageous than all of them put together. The man that had appeared in his dreams more frequent in the last years. And who was currently pressing his hands to his wounds, trying in vain to stop the bleeding. To keep the life inside this weak, old, battered body. He was ready to go. But there was still something else. Something concerning Dumbledore. He tried to remember and was relieved when it came back to him. With great effort, he lifted his arm and pointed at the tears that were slowly running down his face.
“Take them,” he gasped. In a flurry of motion, Potter managed to come up with a flask. He could feel that he had only mere moments of consciousness left so he took one long last look at the young man that had haunted his nights for so many years, and murmured, “You have your mother's eyes.”
Then he felt himself fade away. With a sigh he closed his eyes, not caring any more that the young man would be able to see everything in the pensieve.
It was over.
Harry sat on his bed, staring numbly into nothing. Voldemort was dead. Defeated. Gone forever. No one would ever be able to revive him again. He buried his head in his hands, and took a deep breath. And another. Then a single tear began to fall. Harry managed to fight them back for he knew when he started now he wouldn't be able to stop it for a long time.
With a groan he got up, put his hand in his pocket and gripped the little flask with Snape's memories tight. He had to go to the pensieve. He needed to see those memories again. The first time he had watched them, it had been still in the middle of the war. He had been focused on the relevant information, and had tried to ignore the rest. But now that it was over, he couldn't ignore it any more. Loneliness was like a heavy cloak around his shoulders, pressing him down. As he walked to the Headmistress' office, he tried not to think too closely about what he had seen the first time. Tried to keep his thoughts neutral so as not to get too excited.
Finally, he was in front of the office, and for once he was glad to be the Hero of the Wizarding World for no one questioned him why he was here at this hour in the night. But on the other hand … no one who could question him was even around for everyone was still happy to be free of Voldemort and was enjoying the knowledge that they could sleep in peace for the first time in what seemed to be forever.
It was dark in the office and Harry slowly made his way over to the table on which he could still see the basin. As he stood in front of it, he slowly pulled his hand out of his pocket, opened the flask and watched the memory slide into the Pensieve. Then he took a deep breath and dove in.
~~~~3 YEARS LATER~~~~
“You really should go out,” Hermione said with a stern glance at Harry who was busy brewing a complicated potion and wasn't really listening to her.
“Hm?” he hummed back, stirring carefully three times clockwise, twice counter clockwise and then again four times clockwise. Now he only had to wait exactly 45 seconds, then he …
Darn, Hermione's voice really could be shrill. “What?” he asked without turning around.
28, 29, he counted in his head.
“I said you should go out,” she repeated herself.
He put the spoon back into the cauldron and stirred six times counter clockwise. Finished. Now it only had to simmer for the next ten hours and 28 minutes and it was ready. With a smile, he closed the book next to he cauldron, patting it gently. He loved to use the Halfblood Prince's book which was still his favourite after all those years.
“You should go out and meet someone. You're alone ever since Ginny left you and...”
“She didn't leave me,” Harry interrupted her, “we parted by mutual agreement. We're simply better off as friends than as lovers.”
Which we never were anyway, he added in his head but he didn't say it out aloud. Then he sighed. He knew that Hermione would never let it rest. Not when she was so happy with Ron and was surrounded by happy couples, with Harry the only single in their group.
But that was okay. For him at least. Not for Hermione who tried her best to set him up with friends of her again and again. And if they weren't friends, then at least acquaintances. Colleagues. She even had considered to place an add for him. Something he had been able to avert at the last moment.
She stepped closer and put a hand on his arm. “But you can't be alone forever,” she said gently. Harry sighed. “I'm not alone, Hermione,” he replied quietly. This wasn't the first time they had this discussion. And it wouldn't be the last.
In that moment, a sharp hissing noise came from the corner of the room, and the woman quickly took a step back.
“Merlin, that bird creeps me out,” she muttered, glancing at the corner from where a majestic black swan emerged. Slowly, the swan came closer, keeping its eyes glued on Hermione. When it stood between Hermione and Harry, it spread its wings and seemed to shield the young man in a protective gesture.
“It's okay, Sev,” Harry murmured, putting his hands on the black, silken wings and stroked them gently. “She won't hurt me.”
“Sev?” Hermione repeated with a noise close to a squeal, “as in … Severus? As in … Snape?”
“NO!” Harry denied quickly, a little to quickly as he himself noticed, and continued, “no. Sev as in seven. Because I found him seven days after the war.” He nodded as if to confirm his own statement.
His friend looked a little sceptical but seemed to believe him. For now at least. Harry was glad about it. The name had slipped out without him really noticing, and he had frozen for a moment, glad that he had come up with an excuse.
“Look,” he said, after he had managed to calm his protector down, “I really appreciate that you want to help me.” He decided to ignore her snort and continued, “but I think I can manage on my own. No, I'm *sure* I can manage on my own. I understand that you're happy with Ron and that you want me to be happy, too. But please, let me do it my own way.” He cast a quick glance at the old muggle watch on his wall and turned to her again. “Look, I have a client's meeting in an hour and I still have so much to do. Can we postpone this talk?”
And with 'postpone' he meant 'avoiding like the Plague for the next 200 years'. He knew that, and her deep sigh told him that she knew it as well.
They hugged when Hermione left a few minutes later, ignoring the quiet cackles of the swan and Harry was a little ashamed when he felt relieved as the door closed behind her. He looked over to where the big bird was still standing, watching him with its red eyes. He smiled.
“I know you don't like her, Sev,” he said softly, “but she's my friend and you can't always bitch at her when she's touching me.”
The bird gave him one last look then it turned around and went back to the corner where Harry had built a nest for it. Three years now, he thought, watching the big animal lovingly. For three years now the big black swan was his constant companion. And he hadn't lied to Hermione.
He indeed had found the beautiful creature seven days after the war. Or to be more precise: it had found him. He had been wandering around the premises of Hogwarts, taking in the destruction, mourning the dead, and involuntarily his steps had led him to the Shrieking Shack. Or what had remained of it. He had been careful when he'd stalked through the debris, afraid to find Snape's corpse but surprised to see it gone. He'd sighed. Apparently, the remaining Death Eaters had decided to get him and mutilate his corpse. He’d swallowed thickly at that thought.
But maybe one of the Order of the Phoenix had taken care of him. He had to remember to ask one of them. A barely audible noise had made him turn around and there in a corner, huddled beneath some overhanging stones, had been the beautiful black bird. It had been severely wounded, blood dripping from a wound in its long, elegant neck, one wing had been buried underneath a rubble of stones and one of its legs was spread in a weird angle to its body. He had looked at it and for a moment he'd been convinced that those red eyes looked begging. He had taken it home, first to his room at Hogwarts then later on to his house in the country where he still lived now. And the bird had healed nicely. The only thing he still wondered about until this day was the apparent inability – or unwillingness – of the swan to leave him.
He smiled as he rounded the corner and went into the kitchen to make his dinner.
Dinner as always was a quiet affair. He sat down with soft music in the background, and smiled when his companion came over after a few minutes to join him. It had taken him a while to figure out what the bird liked but he soon had become more or less of an expert and he liked the company of the black bird standing next to him. And if he talked to it like to another human being … well, who was there to mock him?
The nightmares began a few days later. When Harry woke up the third night in a row, sweat soaked and with trembling hands, a glance at the date told him the reason why.
That special day came around again.
The day he had defeated and ultimately killed Voldemort was nearing its third anniversary. And the nights before and after were always troublesome and he got plagued by nightmares. Nightmares about his fight, about the search for the horcruxes, about Nagini coming after him, chasing him, pulling him out of the arms of an unknown man dressed completely in black.
('Snape', his mind always delivered helpfully … not)
Not Snape, for it was a man he felt safe with. Protected. Secured. Loved.
But then … on the other hand Snape had done all that for him, right? Had made him feel all that. He got up, walking around in his bedroom, trying to shake off the panic those nightmares always induced. A soft noise from the door made him turn and smile. His big black guardian angel was standing in the doorway, gazing at him with its red eyes and for a second Harry imagined they looked almost gentle.
“Hey Sev,” he murmured quietly, “did I wake you?”
The swan came closer and rested its head in a trusting gesture on Harry's shoulder. Tenderly, he stroked the silken black feathers and let his fingers trudge over the place on the long neck where the feathers were still short and bristly because of the old wound.
“I'm sorry,” he continued, “it's just …” He stopped, knowing that he repeated himself. “You know that whenever it's the anniversary … the nightmares begin. I can hardly sleep. And when I sleep I dream weird things. About a man, holding me tight.” He laughed quietly. “But you know all of that, right?”
The swan began to cackle softly and Harry smiled, patting it. “If only I could understand you, my friend. My dear Sev.” His smile deepened when he swan butted its head against his shoulder, gently but insistently pushing him back to his bed. “Okay, okay … I understand. Back to bed.”
He climbed in and wasn't too surprised to find the swan hopping in behind him. Making itself comfortable, the bird lay down on the foot of the bed, watching Harry who knew that now he would be able to sleep. He smiled, glad that he'd never forbidden the bird to come into his room.
The next night was the same, as was the night after that. Only when the anniversary was over for three days, he felt calmer again and slept peacefully for the first time in at least a week when he suddenly jerked awake in the early hours of the morning, a scream dying on his lips as a terrible pain tore through his neck. It felt like someone – or something – ripped his throat out. He barely refrained from gurgling like he was suffocating in his own blood. He pressed his hands to his throat, confused but relieved to find only skin and not open flesh and warm blood. He startled when without warning an agonized scream echoed through his house. He bolted upright, nearly fell out of bed and ran with his wand at the ready down to the living room from where the cry had come.
He burst through the door, and switched on the light.
And jerked around when a hoarse voice grunted, “No. Light!”
Almost on his own accord, he hit the switch again, plunging the room back into darkness. With trembling hands he raised his wand and whispered, “Lumos!”
The tip of his wand began to glow in a ghostly blue light and he slowly walked closer to the corner. What he saw made him stop in his movement. Huddled in the corner where his swan Sev used to be, was a human. A head with long black hair was bowed, bare legs pulled up against the chest so Harry saw only the hands that tried to cover the head and the back. The pale back, terribly disfigured by gruesome scars.
Slowly, he walked closer, stopping again when the figure tried to make himself even smaller in the corner.
“Who are you?” Harry whispered barely audible, “Why are you in my living room?”
At the sound of his voice, the man flinched and Harry felt a lump in his throat. Ever since defeating The Dark Lord he hadn't seen anyone in such a fear. “Ssh,” he tried to quiet the agitated being a bit, “it's okay. You're safe. Nothing's going to happen to you.”
Slowly, very, very slowly, the man let his hand sink and turned around. It seemed to take forever until Harry could see him and more importantly, recognized him. He gasped and felt his knees hit the floor with a loud 'thunk' when he dropped down.
It felt strange … wearing clothes again after being trapped in another form for so long. Severus closed his fingers around the warm mug filled with broth. He didn't know how or where from the man in front of him got this black robe but he was glad for it. It felt familiar. His voice was rusty from being unused for so many years so the broth was soothing for his vocal chords.
His thoughts were whirling around in his head, and every time he tried to take hold of one it slipped through his fingers just out of reach. He knew the man who was staring at him with wide green eyes but he didn't know why. Or how. He also didn't know where he was. He just knew his name. His own name. Knew it because the young man had called him this over the last few years.
Sev. Severus. It had to be his name. Severus Snape. That was what he had been called just a few minutes ago.
He looked up and found himself again under the scrutiny of those green eyes. “Where am I?” he croaked finally, loathing how weak and scratchy his voice sounded.
“You're in my home, Professor,” the young man answered. Professor? Was he this Professor? What was a Professor anyway? He must have looked confused for the man in front of him continued quickly, “Do you know who you are?”
“Severus,” he answered though he hated that he sounded slightly questioning at the end. The other man smiled. “Good,” he answered, “very good. Do you know what happened to you after the war?”
War? He drew a blank. That irritated him. All he remembered clearly was living here, in this house, in the corner where he had woken up not so long ago. He shook his head. He knew nothing of a war. Turning away from those inquisitive eyes and away from the pity he thought he saw in them, he said, “I'm tired,” and got up. But then he stopped dead in his tracks. Where should he go to? Back to the corner in which he had taken his first breath as a human being after so long? Or over to the couch he could see through the doorway in the living room?
A gentle hand on his arm startled him slightly and he was tempted to pull it back. “I'll show you the guest room, Professor,” the young man said with a timid smile. He gazed at him for a long time and finally, he nodded curtly.
The last thing he saw before exhaustion washed over him and made him close his eyes, was the young man (the bushy haired witch had called him Harry, he remembered) leaving his bedroom and closing the door quietly behind him.
Harry woke up less than an hour later because somebody was watching him. But he felt no danger so he only sleepily raised his head and glanced at the door. A tall, dark figure stood there, quietly, watching.
“Professor?” Harry mumbled, and switched on the light on his night stand. The little lamp spread a warm glow that barely reached the man in the doorway. He sat up and yawned, rubbing his eyes. “What's wrong? Have trouble sleeping?”
Hesitantly, the man took a step closer, his hands folded in front of him, appearing as solemn and as dignified as possible in the middle of the night. “I,” he began and fell silent again. Then he took a deep breath. “Apparently, I do not seem to be able to sleep alone tonight.”
Harry, his brain still befuddled from sleep, simply stared at him. Severus came another step closer and now Harry could see his former professor's face. It was as emotionless and stony as Harry remembered it to be but there was something else in those dark eyes. Something almost vulnerable. The seconds ticked by until at least some of his synapses were finally coherent enough to connect the dots, and it was not a moment too soon. Snape was already on the verge of turning around again when he reacted.
“Sure,” he said, trying very hard not to shout in his attempt to stop the other man, “I mean … ahm, yes, I can understand.”
And without saying another word, he simply skidded over to the edge of his bed and lifted his bed covers. Then he involuntarily held his breath until the dark clad figure slowly walked over to the bed, turned around and sat down. Slowly, he breathed out, watching as the man lay down and with a neutral expression on his face pulled the cover up.
“Good night,” Severus mumbled and closed his eyes.
Harry glanced at him for a few moments more before he mumbled a quiet good night himself, switched off the light again and fell asleep again
The next time he woke up, it was still dark outside, and he found himself encased in strong arms, a long leg wedged between his own and a hard-on pressed against his backside. It felt good, Harry thought, his mind still bedazzled from sleep. It had been a very long time since he had woken up like that. Too long to be precise. He snuggled closer into the warmth behind him, lazily caressed the hand that rested on his stomach, and smiled when he heard a quiet grumble. Soft lips were pressed against his neck and he purred in deep contentment. When a slow, undulating motion began, shoving the hard cock against his pajama-clad ass, he sighed happily.
But then he heard a gasp coming from the other side of the bed, felt the alluring warmth vanish in a heartbeat and finally a *thump* when a body hit the floor. It was then that the events of last evening came back to him and he remembered *who* he shared his bed with. He stayed still, pretending to sleep, waiting what his former professor would do now. With his eyes closed, he listened into the room for any kind of noise. After what seemed like an eternity but couldn't have been more than a few seconds, he heard the rustling of clothes (Snape getting up, he thought) then some steps (thank god he never replaced the creaking floorboards) that stopped at his side of the bed. Harry forced himself to stay calm, breath evenly and even thought about moving his eyes a little as if in deep sleep.
A soft touch to his forehead surprised him, gentle fingers stroking his hair back. He nearly moaned in disappointment when those cool fingers were gone. Then again steps (avoiding the creaking floorboards this time), the opening and closing of the bedroom door and after that silence.
Harry opened his eyes, trying to figure out what the hell had just happened.
Waking up in bed, wrapped around that young man, had been weird but … nice. It had reminded him of earlier times though he couldn't say why. Or when those happy times had taken place. There was a lingering darkness in the back of his mind. The knowledge that something bad had happened which had caused his transformation in the first place. And with the transformation the memory loss. He sat in the darkness of the living-room, staring into nothingness. His cock was still hard beneath his robes and he was tempted to reach down and relieve some of the tension. Then he dropped his head in his hands. Merlin, being an animal had been so much easier.
With a heavy sigh he got up, went back to his own room and closed the door tightly behind him.
Harry sat in front of the fireplace, gazing at the face in the flames.
“No,” he said to the other man, “this is something you really *really* should see for yourself. No way I'm telling you over a firecall.”
The other man gazed at him with a calculating expression on his face until he finally nodded. “Very well,” he said, “then I suggest you step back. I'm going to floo over.”
Harry quickly got up to his feet and took several steps back. Seconds later the floo flared to life, and a man stepped through. Wrapped up in a dark cloak which he let drop open in a dramatic gesture, Lucius Malfoy stood before him. Harry glared coolly at him.
“Malfoy,” he said with a small nod.
“Potter,” the tall blondee man replied equally as cool.
For a few long moments those two completely different men stared at each other until Harry couldn't hold his smile in any longer. “Lucius,” he said warmly, and squealed quietly when the bigger man wrapped him up in his arms and lifted him slightly.
“Let me down, you big oaf,” he laughed. Only to find himself dropped gracelessly onto the floor.
“Who are you calling a big oaf, you impertinent brat?” Lucius said, looking for all the world like a pissed off aristocrat but Harry could see the little laugh lines around the older man's eyes. Giving up and smiling down at Harry, Lucius offered him a hand and pulled him up.
“Hello Harry,” he said, still smiling, “nice to see you. Now what was it you needed me to see with my own eyes?”
Harry's smile dimmed slightly. “It really is something extraordinary. Come with me.”
Lucius followed him through his office in the living room where Harry noticed that the older man's gaze fell into the corner. He smirked when he heard the question, “Where is your guardian by the way?”
“You will see,” he answered and continued his way to the kitchen. When he opened the door, he smiled when he saw Snape sitting at the table, re-discovering his love for coffee.
“Why are we … in … your...”
Harry heard the stuttering behind him, and with a flourishing gesture to the table he said, “Lucius, may I present to you: Professor Severus Snape.”
Severus looked up, his cup halfway to his lips, staring with a slight frown at his host and a stranger behind him who stared at him as if he'd seen a ghost.
Slowly, the man with the white-blonde hair walked closer and sat down heavily. “Sev?” he whispered aghast.
Severus carefully put his cup down as the man continued talking.
“Is it really you? Where were you?”
As the man reached out to take his hands, Severus quickly pulled them back and hid them beneath the table. A little helpless, he gazed at Harry.
Harry stepped closer and rested a hand on the blondee man's shoulder.
“Professor, this is Lord Lucius Malfoy. He works for the Ministry.”
Severus gazed into the silvery eyes of the man opposite from him and realized that he was expected to know this man. What was he supposed to do now? Would a simply nod be sufficient? Should he have let him take his hands? He decided to do nothing but he slowly put his hands back on the table and folded them in front of him. When Harry took the seat next to him, he was relieved. He knew Harry. Knew that he could trust him. Then the man in front of him made a slightly frustrated sound which seemed vaguely familiar. He frowned and cocked his head slightly.
“Severus?” Harry asked quietly but he just shook his head. “Severus has a little trouble with his memories,” the young man explained quietly. The Lord before him nodded.
“You don't know me, do you?” he asked and Severus shook his head.
“Although,” he began and a hopeful sparkle crept in those silvery eyes, “you just made a noise which seemed … familiar. Like I have heard it before. Some …. sometime ago. But I am not sure where or when.”
“That's a good start, Professor,” Harry murmured softly and patted his arm.
Severus snorted, still frustrated at the big black hole where his memories should be. Impatiently, he brushed the hand away and got up. “Really? If you excuse me, please. Lord Malfoy, Harry.”
He had to admit his exit was a little hasty but right now he needed to be alone to try and decipher the strange feelings of the almost memory the white-blonde man had evoked in him.
Lucius simply stared at the door through which his old friend and comrade-in-arms had left the kitchen.
“What?” was the only thing he finally managed to utter.
“Two nights ago I woke up in the middle of the night from a nightmare. I had the feeling as if my throat had been ripped out. Then I heard a scream.” Harry took a deep breath and began to play with Severus' coffee cup. “Merlin, the last time I heard a scream filled with so much agony had been when Voldemort had cast an Cruciatus Curse on one of his victims.” Another sigh, and Harry looked up in Lucius' eyes. “When I came down into my living-room there he was. Sitting on the blankets my Se … swan always rested on. I tried to talk to him, asked him about why he had been living with me, transformed into a swan of all animals. But his memory seemed to be completely gone. He just knows his name and I'm not sure whether that isn't only because I called him by it several times.”
Lucius watched the young man in front of him, watched his fingers move the used cup absent-mindedly from left to right. So much had rested on those small shoulders ever since he had been born. After the defeat of the dark Lord everyone had thought that at last he would be able to live his life in peace. He had done so much more than just kill Voldemort. But when everything was finally over, his fight had continued. His fight in front of the Ministry of Magic, of the Wizengamot, his fight against the Chief Warlock. His fight for Severus Snape. For Draco and Narcissa Malfoy. His fight for the freedom of a lot of other death eaters who in the end hadn't blindly followed the dark lord but had switched sides and had helped him.
And his fight for him, Lucius Malfoy. And now he had Severus Snape in his house who had lived as a swan for the last three years. And who had no memory whatsoever. Couldn't he ever get a break?
“What do you want to do?” he finally asked the young man in front of him. Harry shrugged.
“I have no idea. That's why I called you. I really hoped that he might remember you.” With a sigh Harry dropped his head on the table. “I really really hoped that he would see you and *poof* his memories were back.”
Lucius had to laugh slightly. “It's not that easy, Harry.”
“Yes,” Harry mumbled into the table, “I can see that now.”
Lucius turned his head to the door again. “Maybe I should talk to him.”
Harry lifted his eyes to him. “You would do that?”
The older man patted his arm softly. “Was that not the reason you called me today, Harry?”
When Harry simply nodded, Lucius got up and left the kitchen. At the door he cast one last look at Harry. The young man hadn't moved and was still sitting with his head resting on the table.
That voice. Severus sat on his bed, his arms wrapped around himself. He *knew* that voice. Had heard it so many times before. It hadn't seemed just 'familiar', it had seemed like something he had grown up with. Like something that was ingrained in his body. In his mind. In his *blood*, sweet Merlin.
A soft knock on the door brought his thoughts to a halt, and he turned around.
“Come in,” he said after a few heartbeats. The door was slowly pushed open and the blondee haired man stepped in, quietly closing it behind him. “May I sit with you?” he asked very politely. And there it was again. Something in the sound of this voice that he was almost intimately acquainted with. But no matter how desperate he tried to remember, as soon as he thought he could grasp it, it just seemed to slip away. It was so frustrating.
“How do I know you?” he asked through gritted teeth. “I *know* that I know you. I can *feel* that I know you. But how? And since when?”
The man came closer and sat down. “We've known each other for a very long time, Severus.”
“We … we went to school together. You're the godfather of my son. And we survived the war together, although we both made very bad decisions at some point in our life.”
Son. Godfather. Suddenly the picture of a little boy came to his mind, his hair white-blondee like his father's, eyes a mixture of his mother's blue and his father's silver. With a groan he closed his eyes and put a hand to his forehead. Another picture. The boy older now, probably 14 or 15, with an ugly sneer on his aristocratic face. And his own voice, snarling, “50 points from Slytherin”.
“Slytherin,” he murmured incoherently, and was surprised when a hand landed on his shoulder.
“Yes,” the man breathed, “yes, that's right. That was our house. We were both in Slytherin. And my son...”
“...is also a Slytherin,” Severus finished the sentence. And just like that a name popped into his mind. “Draco,” he whispered, “his name is Draco. He looks like you but his eyes are more like his mother's.”
The pressure on his shoulder increased and the smile on the man's face grew wider with every word.
“Narcissa,” the man said and there was a gentle tone in his voice. Severus curiously glanced at him. “Is that her name?” he asked and felt guilty when a shadow flitted across the blondee man's face. “Yes,” he nodded, “that was her name.”
Then the man, Lucius, took a deep breath. “She died shortly after the trials. Though Harry managed to exonerate all of us, the stress was too much for her.”
Severus looked down at his hands, not knowing what to say. Sorry seemed to be woefully inadequate. Then a thought came to his head. “Exonerate us from what?”
A pat on the shoulder then the hand was removed. “Maybe you should wait until your brain is ready for this and you remember it all by yourself.”
Lucius got up, and straightened his clothes. “I let you think about all of this now. If you allow I would like to repeat this. Visit you again in a couple of days. We have been close friends once, and,” now the man's voice broke slightly, “I don't have too much of those nowadays.”
Severus looked up at him, and frowned. “You have the boy downstairs. Harry.”
A smile almost broke through when Lucius said quietly, “Yes. I have Harry.” Turning around, he left the room, leaving Severus with a lot of thoughts alone.
'You have the boy downstairs. Harry.'
The laughter that erupted out of Lucius' chest now was harsh and not in the slightest happy. Oh yeah, he had the boy.
After Narcissa's death, Draco had nearly gone completely off the rack. He was not used to handle such pain and Lucius had to admit that he hadn't been that much of a help. Yes, his marriage had been arranged but they had become friends over the years. No, he hadn't loved her but he had grown to respect her deeply. Her strength, her unwavering loyalty. And when she had died, he had been so consumed in his own grief that he hadn't noticed Draco's despair.
Harry though, had.
Had been there for him when he himself, Lucius, had looked for an answer at the bottom of a bottle of Firewhiskey. Or had been simply too much locked up in his own head to see the anguish his son was going through. More than once, Harry had shown up at his doorstep, Draco over his shoulder. More than once had he received a firecall or an owl, telling him that Draco was with Harry and would return the next morning. It had taken him some time to come back to his senses but when he had finally succeeded and had arrived at Harry's doorstep to thank him, he had simply smiled it away. Mumbling something about 'Draco doing the same for me' and that was that.
Now Severus told him 'you have the boy'. No, he didn't 'have' the boy. Didn't mean he didn't want the boy. Composing himself again, he went back to the kitchen, to talk with 'the boy'.
It was quiet in the house while Harry was busy in his lab, adding some finishing touches to his potions, especially the ones that were time-sensitive.
Humming quietly to himself, he forgot the time and everything around him. It was only when he was done slicing up some herbs and tried to sit up straight again that his back and neck made itself known with a painful crick. “Ouch,” he gasped, and rubbed his hurting muscles. “I guess I've overdone it again.” With a wince he got up, finished his work and opened the door from his lab to the rest of the house. He was surprised to see that night had fallen which meant he had been down in his lab for at least six hours. No wonder his back and neck were killing him. He sighed. Another reminder that he had fought in a war which had left him with more than just nightmares. Ever since the year he had spent running around, chasing horcruxes until he had fought the ultimate battle, the muscles in his back would cramp up when he kept still for too long. And sometimes even twenty minutes could be too long.
When he came into the kitchen he noticed Severus sitting at the table and realized that he hadn't seen him since Lucius had left the house hours ago. He went to the fridge and took out some juice then he sat down opposite the older man. The silence between them stretched but it wasn't uncomfortable. Suddenly Severus raised his head, sniffed the air like a bloodhound and zeroed in on his fingers.
Apparently without thinking, he reached out for Harry's hand and looked at it so closely that the younger man felt weird. Then, without releasing his hand, Severus looked up and his eyes found Harry's.
“You have powdered unicorn horn at your hands. What are you doing with powdered unicorn horn?”
Harry frowned. “I was in my lab, making some Draught of Peace for Madam Pomfrey. She's down to her last vials so she asked me for a bunch of new ones.”
One dark eyebrow shot up in an oh-so-familiar gesture. “So you just added the unicorn horn?”
Harry nodded, and Severus continued, “Which colour did it turn?”
Harry smiled, realizing what his old potions professor was up to. “Pink. Then I stirred it until it turned red. Now it's simmering until it turns purple. According to my experience,” he ignored the snort, “that might take six hours.”
Severus seemed to notice just now that he was still holding the younger man's hand and dropped it as if it was poisonous.
“So in the end you managed to brew your potions accordingly,” Severus said, folding his hands on the table in front of him. Harry nodded.
“I had a good teacher,” he replied with a smile.
“You had the *best* teacher,” Severus replied with dignity. And Harry felt his heart beat faster. Could it be, that ….
“Do you remember something?” he breathed softly.
Severus put a hand to his forehead and grimaced slightly. “I … am not sure. A room full of children. A dungeon.” He got up and started pacing. “It comes in flashes and pieces. And sometimes it's gone just as fast. I can see myself sitting at a table with parchments on my desk. I feel … I feel …” With a frustrated sigh, he sat down again. “I feel angry.”
“Angry?” For a moment, Harry was confused. Helpless, yes. Frustrated, definitely. Angry? That was unexpected.
But then again … Professor Snape had never been exactly known for being a patient man. Quite the contrary. Where other teachers had yelled at them for being stupid and/or untalented, Snape had become quiet. Very, very quiet. And the quieter he'd become, the bigger the trouble the student found himself in was.
Harry had been on the receiving end of those quiet *quiet* sentences far too often not to remember them. Severus Snape getting angry because his brain didn't work the way I was supposed to … the way he wanted it to … no wonder he was feeling angry.
“I understand, I think,” he finally said. “But you remember being a teacher. A good one at that. Give yourself some time. It will come back. This is a good beginning.”
He yawned widely, and pushed himself up when a cramping pain shot through his back. “Oh fuck,” he gasped and sunk back onto his chair. Severus was up in an instant. “Are you alright?”
Harry took a few carefully measured breaths until he shook his head. “No, not really. I think I've pulled a muscle in my back again while cutting ingredients the whole day.”
“I could help you with a healing spell,” Severus said and that was so unlike anything his former potions professor would say that Harry had to laugh at that. Which in turn pulled at his hurting muscles again which in turn made him hiss in pain again.
'Great,' he thought while he tried to breath through it, 'just great. You want to impress the man and then … whoa ... wait, what?' When had he wanted to impress the man? Another careful breath and he said, “That's very nice of you but I don't think it would work. This is just a cramp. A muscle spasm. Normally it is enough to put a heating pad on it. Or sometimes a massage helps.”
When there was silence, he looked up and found Severus gazing at him with his head cocked slightly. “I think I can give you a massage,” he finally said slowly.
“You can?” Harry asked back, the surprise evident in his voice. Then, when he saw the way the older man's face closed off again, he hastily continued, “Of course you can. But could you? I mean … would you?”
The face relaxed again and the ghost of a smile flitted over the prominent features. “I could,” Severus replied, “and I would.”
Harry sighed. “Thank you. I'm just not sure if I can get up.” He closed his eyes, took a deep breath, rested his hands on the table and carefully pushed himself up. Very slowly he managed to get up, and startled when he felt a gentle hand on his elbow.
Long, elegant fingers closed around his arm and he could sense a warm body close behind him. He swallowed thickly. This was a little too close to his dreams but his back was still hurting so pulling away and running to his room was unfortunately not an option. Snape wasn't exactly helpful when he quietly breathed into his ear, “Where do you want to do it?”
Oh god, Harry thought, and his knees got weak. That soft breath against his skin, the hand on his arm … he really, really should have a little trip to the pensieve tonight.
“On … on the couch,” he finally gasped breathless. Step by step, they made their way to the living room, where Harry enlarged the couch with a wandless spell to a comfortable size, produced a small vial of oil that he handed to Severus, and with a painful groan lowered himself down on it.
“What do you … should I … take off my shirt?” he mumbled with his face pressed into a cushion. The few massages he had until today had always been with him removing his shirt.
“That would be helpful,” the dark voice behind him agreed, “or I could help you as moving is apparently still painful for you.”
Harry moaned silently and whispered, “Please.” Seconds later he felt the warm air of his living room on his bare skin, followed by warm, oily hands stroking over his back. He groaned in pleasure. “Oh,” he sighed, relaxing into the touch, “oh, that's good.”
Then he gasped in pain when those clever hands found the sore spots on his back. It hurt. Hurt like hell. He gritted his teeth when fingertips dug deep into cramped muscles, loosened them up and made them pliant again. The sound he made this time was one of relief. He didn't realize it that he sounded almost pornographic until the hands on his back stopped.
The skin under his hands was soft as silk. The oil he used to massage the young man was warm and only slightly scented and he felt almost hypnotized when he let his hands glide over the back. He frowned a bit at all the scars that marred the otherwise perfect skin. Maybe they were a relic from the war Harry had mentioned earlier. When he encountered a knotted muscle, he gently dug in, smiling when he heard a deep groan. He continued his journey over the young man's back, searching and finding all the kinks and cricks, drawing all possible sounds out of Harry.
And that became a problem after a few minutes. Because all those sounds the young wizard uttered were definitely waking up his libido. Causing his blood to rush south and slowly but surely his cock filled until he was hard. But as long as he kept a certain distance to the youth on the couch, he would be safe.
But then another deep moan made his hips twitch involuntarily slightly forward and for a heart-stopping moment his hard-on came in contact with the jean-clad ass of the man underneath him. He snatched his hands back as if burnt, mumbled an excuse and fled to his room.
Two minutes later he came with a barely muffled groan in his sink, his knees weak and unable to look at himself in he mirror.
Harry had all but melted into the cushions under the talented hand of his old potions master. He was barely aware of all the noises that spilled from his mouth, all the groans and moans and sighs. He moved slightly to make himself even more comfortable when he suddenly felt the unmistakable sign of a hard-on in his pants.
The moan that escaped him this time was one of lust. But before his brain could process what just happened in his neither regions, the hands were gone from his skin, he heard a mumbled, “Better now, Potter? Good. Good night then,” the footfall indicating a hasty retreat and then the opening and closing of his guest room door.
Okay, what the hell had just happened? He moved carefully, relieved to find the pain in his back completely gone, and sat up. He replayed the last minutes in his head and sank back against the couch with a frown. He had been deeply relaxed, almost purring underneath the hands on his back working out all the kinks and knots in his muscles when suddenly the older man had practically jumped up and fled the room. Had he been too obvious in his almost hedonistic pleasure of feeling those strong hands on his skin? Thinking back he had to admit that some of his noises could have been interpreted wrong if only heard. Had he embarrassed Severus? He took a deep sigh. It had been too nice (and a little too close to his dreams) to be real.
He looked down at the bulge in his pants and decided that yes, a visit to the pensieve would definitely be a good idea in the near future.
As in … right now.
Strong hands slid over his skin, a finger pushed into his hole made him tremble while soft lips gently kissed his neck.
“I want you so much, Harry,” Severus murmured with his deep, almost hypnotizing voice, “open up and let me in.”
With a deep sigh, Harry relaxed around the digit, moaning lustfully and pushing back against it. “Yes,” he grumbled, “more, please, Severus, more.”
Harry stood next to the bed and watched Severus' dream of himself making love to a sixth year Harry Potter. Then, just as he was entering Harry, the scene changed. This time he was in his last year at Hogwarts, after the war, and an eighteen year old Harry stood in front of Severus Snape in the potions lab. Harry watched himself walk closer to the stoic man, dressed as always in black and when he was within reaching distance, he sank down to his knees and bowed his head.
“How may I serve you, Sir?”
Harry shuddered as always when he heard his younger self talk in such a submissive voice. Slowly, he shoved his hand down the front of his pants and gripped his cock which was already rock hard. When he watched his young self crawl close to Severus who had opened his coat to show that he was wearing nothing underneath except for a hard-on, he began to stroke himself.
The moment his lips closed around the hard cock, the scene changed again.
Severus was laying in his bed, Harry cuddled up close to him, both were naked. Severus murmured something the older Harry couldn't understand but it was the incredible tenderness of this scene that overwhelmed him every time he visited these memories in the pensieve. He saw the two men in the bed kissing, touching, stroking each other lovingly.
Another change and Harry knew what was coming now. His grip around his cock tightened and he stroked himself faster.
“Merlin, yes,” he heard Severus gasp and involuntarily, Harry took a step closer to the scene unfolding in front of him. Dark and light, silvery white and raven black. And him in he middle, feeling the skin of those two extraordinary men under his hands and he came with a gasp, and pulled his head out of the pensieve.
Panting, he sat next to the table on the floor, his cum slowly cooling on his skin, staring into nothingness. It took him a while to get up and clean himself up.
When he was lying in his bed about twenty minutes later, he thought, 'Maybe I should give this dating thing Hermione is bugging me about a chance.'
“Do you think a potion might help him get his memory back?” Lucius Malfoy asked while he bounced his first grandchild on his knees. Harry sat opposite of him, smiling at the domestic scene.
“Is this colour of hair inheritable?” he asked back without answering the older man's question. The nine months old baby was gnawing on his little chubby fist, making happy gurgling noises and already the boy had white blondee hair, still soft as an angel's wing but the same colour as Draco's. Lucius stilled for a moment then he smiled. “It's a Malfoy treat,” he finally said, sounding once again like the snobby aristocrat Harry had met so many years ago. “It sure is,” Harry replied then he answered Lucius' question, “No, I don't. I searched in all my books, even in the half-blood prince's, but I couldn't find anything.” He sighed. “We can only wait. His brain is the one to decide when and what it reveals. Like with you and Draco, that he remembered your son's name. Or the other day, when he could smell on my fingers that I had worked with unicorn horn and was immediately able to recall that I was not always that good with potions.” Here the younger man smiled a little embarrassed.
Lucius grinned. Still it was strange for Harry to see the former death eater so carefree. They hadn't really started on the best of terms and sitting here with the older man was even after everything that had happened in the last three years, a little weird.
To put it mildly.
“So we can do … what? Nothing?”
Harry shrugged. “Pretty much.”
The little boy had finally managed to take hold of a long strand of Lucius' hair and pulled at it, causing his grandfather to wince slightly. The boy giggled happily. And even Harry had to smile at the innocent happiness of the child. For a moment he was almost able to forget the worries that awaited him at home.
Severus felt the scream die in his throat when he saw a giant of a man exit the forest with a lifeless Harry Potter in his arms. No. No, it couldn't be. It wasn't supposed to be. He had promised to take care of Harry. To protect him. How many times had he stood up against other people in order to prevent harm from the boy? How many times had he risked to be exposed just so no one would discover the plans Harry was working on?
And now it had all been for nothing?
With a harsh shout he feel to his knees, barely feeling the rubble and debris cutting into his skin. The giant – Hagrid, Severus thought, his name was Hagrid—heard the shout and came closer. Severus saw a hand hanging down, dark hair unruly as ever, eyes closed.
“You did this, Professor,” the man cried, tears spilling down his cheeks, “you killed Harry. Now we're all doomed. He-who-must-not-be-named will kill us all. He will...” The half-giant broke off in the middle of the sentence, his eyes became wide and then they rolled back in his head. Silently, he fell down, dropping Harry carelessly to the ground. For a moment Severus didn't know what had happened when suddenly Voldemort appeared behind him.
“My dear Severus,” the pale man purred, reached out and touched his cheek. Severus shivered in fear, in disgust, in absolute horror as he felt himself getting aroused. Magical tendrils surrounded him, wound themselves around his throat, around his cock, around his whole body and slowly they tightened. Cutting off his air, his blood flow, dark points began to dance in front of his eyes as he could feel himself suffocate.
“You will always be mine,” Voldemort murmured into his ear, “now that The-Boy-Who-Lived became The-Boy-Who-Failed.” One of those tendrils moved his head to the dead Hagrid who was laying next to Harry on the ground. Harry's broken eyes stared accusingly at him. “Look at him. Look at The-Boy-Who-Died!” The next words were only barely audible and yet they burned into his very soul. “Look at The-Boy-You-Killed!”
With a harsh gasp Severus jolted awake, and just so managed to reach the toilet before he threw up the contents of his stomach. Shivering, he sat in front of the toilet on the cold tiles, and cried. Cried for everything he had lost. Cried for Hagrid, for Harry. For all those that had died in the war.
War? Another bout of nausea hit him and he threw up again although there was nothing left in his stomach. He remembered the war. Remembered Voldemort, his master for so many years. He remembered how afraid he had been every time he had been summoned. How angry he had been at Dumbledore for using Potter the way he did. Using him for his own causes. Another cramp hit him, and he groaned in pain.
It took him a while until he could think clearly again and the panic slowly receded. Voldemort was dead. Killed by the Boy-Who-Lived. The Saviour Of The Wizarding World. Who was still alive. In whose house he currently lived.
With shaking knees, Severus pushed himself up. He had to see Harry. He stumbled to the sink, brushed his teeth and rinsed his mouth. Then he left his room and quietly walked over to Harry's bedroom. He raised his hand and hesitated. Should he knock? Risk to wake the young man? He didn't want to. He just needed to throw a quick glance a him. Make sure he was well. Alive.
Carefully, he opened the door. And sighed in relief. There he was. Harry Potter. Severus stood in the doorway, taking in the picture in front of him. Harry was in his bed, sleeping. His chest rose and fell in a steady rhythm. It was a beautiful sight and without noticing it, he stepped closer until his knees suddenly touched the bed. That was when he realized that he was almost leaning over it. He had to touch. Had to touch the young man to assure himself that Harry was alright. Without thinking, he raised the cover and slid in next to the young man. Watching the relaxed face in front of him, taking in every single detail. Every little crease, every movement, and in watching him, he fell asleep.
As he woke up the next time, it was dawning outside and the sun was just beginning to creep over the horizon. He was laying on his back with Harry sprawled across him, sleeping tightly. A little smile flitted over his face and for a heartbeat he allowed himself to think that he might actually deserve to lie in bed with a lover. Then with a sigh he pushed the sleeping young man gently off of him and left the room to spend the rest of the night in his own room.
This went on for several nights. Every night, as soon as Harry was asleep, Severus would crawl into his bed, sleep there until the early hours of next morning and every time he would wake up with Harry clinging to him like some sort of grapevine. He had to admit that he slept better that way than he had in a very long time. His memory came back slowly. Mostly in his dreams. Dreams and still sometimes nightmares. Dreams about his time at Hogwarts. About Hogwarts per se. About Lucius and his family. Dumbledore. Nightmares with him killing Dumbledore as some kind of mercy killing for he was dying anyway. He remembered his part in the war. The fact that nearly half of his life had been a lie. Working for the Dark Lord while working for the Light at the same time.
He also remembered dying. And his absolute lack of fear. He had yearned for death, had wanted it so badly at that moment because he knew … KNEW … that there would be no life for him after the war. After Voldemort's death. And yet here he was. Sleeping every night in Harry Potter's bed. Waking up surrounded by the young man. He also remembered the fact that he had given Potter his tears with his memories and his dreams. But one of the few things he still didn't remember were what dreams exactly he had given the young man.
He also didn't know why he didn't tell Harry any of this. For now it was still his secret. Maybe because he had so little left of himself that he protected the few small things with a vengeance.
Harry waited until the house had grown quiet, and knew that it would take just a few minutes more until the door to his bedroom would be opened, slowly and carefully, and Severus would come in. Then the older man would lift his covers and would slip into bed beside him. After that it would take about ten minutes until his former Professor would fall asleep.
And ten more for the nightmares to start.
He yawned widely. Gosh, how he would love to have just one night of undisturbed sleep. But on the other hand … caring for Severus meant that he had him in his bed every night. Could care for him, hold him, comfort him. And to have that, getting not so much sleep was a small price to pay for. And besides, sooner or later things would turn for the better, right?
The door opened almost noiselessly, and Harry quickly closed his eyes. He listened intently. No creaking floorboard for Severus had learned meanwhile where they were. Then he felt the covers being lifted, a short swoosh of cool air and then the warmth of the other man settling behind him. A deep sigh, soft breath against his neck and then – and that was new – a small, tender kiss pressed to his neck.
“Good night, Harry,” whispered against his skin. And a few moments later the body behind him relaxed and Harry could tell that Severus had fallen asleep. Carefully, he turned around and gazed at the relaxed features of his former Professor. He yawned again, knowing it would take just a few minutes more until … ah, yes. There it was. A quiet sound, almost a whimper. Hands reaching out, and Harry quickly took them and rested them on his body. He moved even closer until he could press his whole body against Severus'.
“Harry?” A whimper, and Harry gently touched the other man's cheek. “I'm here,” he murmured quietly. “I'm alright. I'm safe.”
The movements of the other man became more violent, and Harry had to go back to a proven technique, namely draping himself across the older man to hold him down. Usually, that would lead to Severus closing his arms around him and pulling him as close as humanly possible.
This night was different though. As soon as he had draped himself over the other man, Severus opened his eyes with a gasp and stared at Harry. Then, before the young man could react, strong hands gripped him, pulled him close and kissed him.
Deep. And Harry opened his mouth on a moan, inviting the other man's tongue inside to play with. They kissed for a few long moments and just as Harry was about to move and more or less climb atop Severus, the older man pulled almost violently away.
Gasping, he stared at Harry, held him at arm's length, seemed to take in every minute detail, before he tore himself away, out of Harry's grasp and fled the room. A few moments later, Harry heard the opening and closing of the front door.
Harry searched for Severus for the next three days and was already on the verge of despair when he got a firecall from Draco Malfoy.
“I think I have here something that belongs to you,” he said without preamble, looking tired. “And I would be really, really glad if you could come and get it.” He sighed. “Now!”
“Severus,” Harry breathed, feeling incredibly relieved. “He's with you? Why didn't I think of that?”
Draco snorted. “I do not know. But he and father drive me up the wall! Ever since Severus apparated on our doorstep, they hide in father's office and whenever they emerge, no, make that *if* they ever emerge, they both look guilty as hell. What the hell happened in your house?”
Harry could feel himself blush and of course, Draco saw it. His eyes narrowed suspiciously. “What. Did. You. Do?” he asked very slowly.
“Nothing,” Harry answered quick, too quick, and Draco groaned.
“Merlin, Potter … what did you do? Did you molest him? Or tease him for still not having his memory back?”
“WHAT? NO!” he almost yelled and – thinking back to their kiss – a little quieter, “well … maybe.”
“Maybe what?” Draco asked but before Harry could answer, he heard another voice interrupt. “Draco, did you … is that Potter?”
“Hello, Lucius,” Harry said a little louder and was surprised when the call was disconnected mere seconds later. A knot formed in his stomach. What had happened? Should he have stopped the kiss? Should he have let him down easy? Should he … the noise of someone apparating outside brought his thoughts to a halt. A loud shout of “POTTER!” let him know that it was Malfoy junior who had just dropped in.
He sighed, got up from his crouching position in front of the fire place, and loosened his wards so that Draco could come in. Barge in, to be more precise. A strong finger poked him into the chest and stormy grey eyes glared at him. “What did you do?”
Harry tried to avoid the insistent poking by taking a step back and then another. Finally, it was too stupid for him and he batted the finger away. “I kissed him, okay?” he hissed.
“You...what?” The poking stopped. In fact, if it wouldn't have been such a serious situation, seeing Draco standing there with his finger in the air would have been funny. So Harry turned away, and sat down heavily on his couch, burying his head in his hands.
“He came to me at night, had a nightmare and I kissed him.”
Then a heavy weight plopped down next to him on the couch and a hand landed on his shoulder. “Why don't you start at the beginning?”
They talked for almost two hours. At the end of the talk, Harry was close to tears and Draco had a thoughtful expression on his face. “Will you tell me why and how Severus ended up a your place?” Harry asked with a quiet voice.
“He apparated in front of the manor three nights ago. Father sent an elf out to get him. When Severus came in, he was white as sheets. Father told us to go to sleep but early next morning they locked themselves in father's study. They only come out occasionally and whenever the do, they look somehow … guilty.”
Harry sniffed slightly, and then he frowned. “Why should they feel guilty?”
If any, Harry thought, he should be the one feeling guilty. He was the one wanking himself silly to Snape's memories, right?
Draco leaned back and sighed. “I don't know. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that he has his memories back.”
Harry suddenly felt cold all over. And then hot. And cold again. “He … he … his memories?” he stuttered. “All of it? Are you sure?”
Draco snorted. “As sure as one can be with Severus Snape. I just overheard them one time and Severus was murmuring something about tears and memories. Then father paled again and they returned to the study. That was it. Later I … Potter?”
“He knows,” Harry muttered soundlessly, and closed his eyes.
“Who?” Draco asked, “Who knows what?”
“Severus,” Harry answered, “he remembers the contents of the memories he gave me. And now he's disgusted with me and can't stomach to face me again.”
Draco simply stared at him, then he slowly shook his head. “You know you're not making any sense, right?”
Potter was mental.
Draco had always known that so getting the confirmation now was really nothing new. But what had his father and his godfather to do with Potter's mental instability? Ever since Severus had apparated in front of the castle and had talked to his father, they both had acted more than weird.
“Maybe I should take a look at these memories so I can judge whether there is a reason for him to be disgusted or...”
“Whoa, I was only trying to help, Potter,” Draco huffed. He felt a little offended but he tried not to show. He took a deep breath, and turned to Harry. “Look, if I shall help you, you have to give me a little more than 'can't face him anymore'. So maybe you can show me just some aspects of the memories so that I can at least understand a little what it is that gets your Gryffindor panties in such a twist.”
He smiled slightly, and bumped his shoulders softly with the other man. Harry eyed him for a few moments, then he sighed deeply and got up, motioning for Draco to follow him. “Okay,” he murmured, “but don't tell me I didn't warn you.”
Almost half an hour later, Draco drowned a big shot of Firewhiskey in one go, gasped as the liquid burned its way down his throat and gestured for a refill. Harry simply did and murmured, “I warned you.”
Draco emptied the second glass, and put it down. “I know,” he wheezed, “and I'm really sorry I buggered you to show it to me. Really, really sorry.” He waved with his empty glass. “Give me a refill.”
The third shot went down a little slower, and Draco simply sipped on it.
“So,” he finally said, “I get it now why Uncle Sev and father are behaving the way they're behaving. What I do not understand is why *you* are feeling so guilty. I mean … those were my godfather's memories and as long as you are not jerk …. oh wait, no!”
With an almost pained noise he downed the third shot and shuddered. “You jerk off to his memories slash dreams slash fantasies and *that's* why you're feeling guilty.”
Draco watched the other man blush furiously and knew … he just knew. “You like him,” he said softly, and wow … he wouldn't have guessed that Harry could blush even more. Hesitantly, Harry nodded. “And you liked what you saw,” Draco continued. Another nod. “And Severus likes you. Otherwise he wouldn't have had such … explicit … fantasies about you.”
“But why did he run away?” Harry asked with a groan, “I just … I mean, one moment we kiss and the next moment he runs as if Voldemort was still alive and summoning him.”
Draco leaned against the backrest of the couch, enjoying the warmth of the Whiskey that ran through his limbs. Closing his eyes, he took a deep breath. “I guess he got his memories back during that kiss. And knowing that you had seen all of it, he simply panicked.”
Harry stared down at the bottle he still held in his hands, and played with the label, peeling it off at one corner. “I want him back, Draco,” he murmured quietly, “want him back here in my house. Even if he's not ready for a relationship yet.” He heaved a sigh. “I enjoyed having him here. Having someone to talk to.”
“You're lonely,” Draco said equally as quiet, and he could feel his heart go out to the courageous young man who had done so much for them all and had asked for so little in return. For a long while they simply sat and drank in silence. Then a thought occurred to him. “So,” he began carefully, waiting until Harry raised his head and looked at him. “Can I ask you something personal?”
Harry narrowed his eyes, gazed at him calculating for a long moment and finally nodded very slowly. Draco sipped once more from his Whiskey, took a deep breath, and said, “I've seen the fantasies Severus had about himself and you. And I think we can safely say you liked those, right?” He waited for Harry's acknowledging nod. Then he continued, “But there was one more.”
Harry winced and Draco almost felt sorry.
Almost. But his curiosity got the better of him. “Did you like that special fantasy, too?”
Both men knew exactly which one Draco was referring too, and although he knew that he might never get this pictures out of his head again, he just had to know. It would explain so much. Especially his father's guilty behaviour because it meant that he wouldn't be opposed to the idea of turning this fantasy into a reality.
When he got a shy, barely there nod as an answer, he grinned. He would never ever want to see his father in such a position … but this could be really fun.
Lucius gently pulled the covers up over his sleeping friend. They had talked and talked for hours, had drank more than they probably should have, and had barely slept. It had taken Lucius a lot of gentle prodding until Severus had finally confided in him.
Now his old friend had fallen in an exhausted sleep, and Lucius sat down heavily in his own chair.
He had known for a long time that Severus hadn't hated the young man as much as he had led everyone else to believe. He remembered fondly that one night so many years ago with too much Firewhiskey where they had talked and laughed about their fantasies. And there had been that one fantasy. He closed his eyes and rested his head against the backrest of his chair. That one damn fantasy that – as he knew now – had been in Potter's pensieve. And therefore in his head. He must have seen it. And all those years he had talked to Lucius, had befriended the older wizard and never said anything.
But on the other hand: what should he have said? Hey Lucius, guess what, I've seen you and Severus fucking me in my pensieve. Lucius groaned. Yes, that would've gone well.
He felt guilty. Harry had been so young back then. Barely 17. And they had fantasized about fucking him. Together. Another groan broke free and he startled slightly when an answering moan came from the couch.
“Stop making such noises, Lucius,” Snape mumbled, opening one eye slowly. “It gives me ideas.”
Lucius smiled. “It does?”
Severus closed his eye again and cuddled closer under the blanket. “You know it does. What did you think about anyway?”
“Our fantasy,” Lucius murmured quietly.
A deep sigh came from the other man. “Again?”
“I can't forget it,” the blondee man whispered, “and to think that Harry knew about it all those years...”
Slowly, Severus moved up again, his eyes now opened. “Lucius, that was so many years ago.”
“I know,” the older Malfoy groaned, “but I just can't help it. Especially now that we grew closer after the war. He helped me with Draco, and was there for us after Narcissa died.”
Snape snorted. “That damned Gryffindor,” he laughed harshly.
“And the closer we got, the more that bloody dream returned.”
Severus yawned, and pushed himself upright. With a smile, he patted the couch next to him and moments later, Lucius dropped down next to him, resting his head on the dark-haired man's shoulder.
“You're in love with him,” Lucius said quietly, emphasis on the 'you'. And smiled when he felt Severus press a gentle kiss on his hair.
“Yes,” he acknowledged, “yes, I am. But I still don't know whether these feelings are reciprocated.”
“Oh believe me, they are,” a voice from the door interrupted the two men in their quiet solitude. Both turned their heads around and frowned. There in the doorway stood Draco.
This was almost too easy, Draco thought. Although the scene in front of him was almost nauseatingly sentimental, it told him exactly what he needed to know.
Severus was in love with Harry Potter.
That hadn't been a real secret. But his father harboured feelings for the dark-haired young man, too. And as far as he could see, his father and his godfather weren't completely opposed to each other. He grinned. A muggle psychotherapist would have a field day with his family.
But now he had to try and get this unconventional lovers together.
“I believe you don't know what to do now, am I right?” Draco asked, his voice quiet and silken. And he smirked when both men shook their heads.
“Well, you can be glad to have me on your side then,” he continued, entered the room fully and closed the door behind him.
Draco wasn't sure whether he should drink himself into oblivion so he would be able to forget all those lovesick glances he had to endure from his father and his godfather earlier that night or if he should start to plan how to get all of them together as long as the ideas were still fresh in his head. With a groan he buried his head in his hands.
“Are you alright, love?” Draco smiled when he heard his wife's voice and turned around to look at her. She stood at the door, Scorpius on her hip who was sleepily cuddling up to her, sucking lazily on a thumb.
“I … am not sure,” he answered truthfully. “I think I have been selected to play … matchmaker for my father and... no, my godfather and Harry.”
With a smile, Astoria stepped closer and sat down next to him. “Between your father and Harry or Severus and Harry?” she asked with a teasing tone to her voice.
“Again, I am not sure.”
Astoria knew about the things he had seen in the pensieve. Of course she knew about it. She had been beside him in that first night when the nightmare had woken him up, and he had spilled everything he had seen. After she had stopped laughing, wiping the tears away, she had taken him in her arms and had pulled him close to her. She had stroked him comforting at first, then arousing and half an hour later, when he broke down panting above her, she had kissed him deeply and has asked, “Think you can sleep better now?”
He had smiled at her and when he'd pressed his head against her chest, her wildly beating heart had confirmed him that their little midnight tryst had been as satisfying to her as it had been to him.
Now he rested his head on her shoulder and sighed. “After seeing all those … fantasies in the pensieve over at Potter's...ouch,” he winced when Astoria's elbow connected sharply with his rips, “okay, over at Harry's place, I think I can say for sure that Harry and Severus would make a good couple. After Harry,” he cast her a quick glance, smiling when she nodded with a smirk at his use of Harry's given name, “had proven himself not to be completely worthless at making potions,” he barely avoided her elbow this time and moved a little away from her, “they might even have something in common. As for my father,” he broke off, sighing again, “I can't see what those two should have in common. I know that father has befriended Harry over the last years, and that he might even feel more than just sympathy for him. But Astoria,” he almost whined again, “it's my father we are talking here about. Do you really expect me to think about finding my father a new love interest?”
Astoria cast him a serious glance and immediately he felt like he was ten years old again, getting chastised by a teacher for unruly behaviour. Merlin, she was good at that. No wonder, Scorpius always was at his best behaviour. when he was with her.
“Yes, Draco,” she said with a stern voice, “I expect you to do whatever it takes to make Lucius happy.” Her voice softened again. “He deserves it, don't you think?”
Draco knew that she was right. If anyone deserved to be happy after all the horrors of the war, it was his father. And Severus of course. He nodded. “You are right. Like always,” he added and leaned in again to kiss her softly.
“Of course I am,” she confirmed then she beamed at him with that special sparkle in her eyes that rarely meant anything good and Draco swallowed.
Harry was lonely.
His dreams became more vivid every night and more than once he woke up, shuddering while the come soaked his boxers. After the third time, he had gone downstairs in his potion lab to look if there was any kind of potion he could make that would prevent him from coming in his dreams like a god-damned teenager.
Of course there was none.
Now he sat at his table, hugging a steaming cup of coffee, feeling miserable. He didn't like to go outside, preferred to stay inside as much as he could. Whenever he went outside, there were still too much people for his liking who recognized him, who called him The-Savior-Of-The-Wizarding-World and who wanted a picture of him. Or a picture with him. With a shudder he remembered the one time where a young witch had pulled him close before he could react and kissed him right on the mouth. He'd thought he would go blind from all the flashlights.
Or the one time where an older woman had tried to make advances at him. Of course there had also been an ever growing number of young – and not so young – wizards making passes at him. But he had always declined and soon enough the Papers wrote that his separation from Ginevra Weasley had emotionally scarred the young hero.
The morning he had read that as the headline, he had laughed so hard that he had been afraid afterwards that he might have pulled something.
That had been in the beginning. It had calmed down. Considerably. But there was still the occasional reporter parked in front of his house which made going out not really fun.
He understood that Severus kept his distance but was a little surprised and more than a little hurt that he hadn't heard anything from Lucius ever since the night his old potion's master had fled his house.
And Merlin, that thought still hurt like hell. He moved the cup out of the way and dropped his head on the table, almost enjoying the dull sound it made when his forehead connected with the wood. Next to him were a couple of parchments different owls had brought him. But he hadn't bothered to read them yet. Probably new potion orders. But he wasn't in the mood to fulfil them. He simply wanted to wallow a little longer in self-pity.
His wallowing was interrupted though when a furious Hermione Weasley came storming in, found him feeling sorry for himself and managed within a few minutes to drag him into the shower where he yelped when ice cold water hit him.
“Her...Hermione,” he gasped, teeth clattering, “are you … have … you … gone … mental?”
He tried to cut off the water and leave the shower but with a simple wink of her wand she had him immobilized, forcing him to endure the icy shower a little longer. It took what felt like forever but was in reality probably not more than a minute or two.
When she finally allowed the water to shut off, he was certain his lips had to be blue.
“Are you listening to me now?” she asked, her voice nearly as icy as the water had been.
He frowned. He found that measure a little drastic just to get him to listen. He opened his mouth to say so, when she raised a hand, cutting him off before he could even form the first word. “And don't you dare to tell me that you would have been listening anyway. I sent you five owls, Harry. Five!” He opened his mouth but she didn't gave him a chance to speak. “I tried to firecall you. Almost every hour in the last two days. Ronald is going mad with worry. Draco had been calling us three times in twenty-four hours.” She took a deep breath. “You don't do that to people, Harry. You just don't.”
She summoned a big, fluffy towel that immediately wrapped itself around Harry's still shivering form, drying him quickly and efficiently.
Slowly, he stepped out of the shower. Seconds later, Hermione hugged him fiercely. “I was so worried,” she whispered in his ear. He hugged her just as tight. “I'm so sorry,” he murmured, “I didn't mean to.”
She bopped him gently. “I know,” she answered, moving back from him, giving him space. “And now get dressed. We have to talk. Do *not* give me that face, Harry Potter!” she said strict when he grimaced. “We have to and we *will* talk!”
He tried to drag it out by being exceptionally slow while dressing but even he had to admit finally that he couldn't avoid this forever.
“Draco called me,” Hermione began, “after the night he called you. He told me everything. Told me that Severus left your house...”
“Fled my house you mean,” he interrupted with a grumble, but she ignored him and continued, “... left your house, and that ever since then nobody was able to reach you. Even Draco couldn’t reach you anymore.”
“I answered his firecall,” Harry defended himself, not really
“One firecall, Harry,” she said sharp, “you answered exactly one firecall. Draco tried to reach you several times, then Astoria and even Lucius tried it. But you had shut down your floo and didn't answer any … why do you look so funny?”
“I never shut down my floo, Mione,” he said with a frown, “Why would I do such a thing?”
Now she seemed to be at a loss, too. “But it doesn't work,” she finally murmured, gazing over at the hearth with an expression as if the floo-system had personally offended her. She stood up and walked over to it. She cast a diagnostic spell and the fireplace kept dark. “That's weird,” she muttered, “but it explains why you didn't get any of the firecalls. Apparently it's been taken off the System for whatever reason.”
“Can you fix it?” Harry asked, curious now. He tried to think if he'd made any rash decision while he was drowning in his sorrow and suddenly a thought came to his mind. He turned around and said loud, “Kreacher!”
With a pop the old house-elf appeared in front of him. With a deep bow he snarled, “What can Kreacher do for Master Harry?”
Harry knelt down and said with a quiet voice, “Kreacher, you know I didn't feel well those past few days,” he ignored Hermione's snort, and continued, “and maybe you wanted to help me. So tell me, did you do something to the floo so it stopped working?”
Kreacher patted his own chest with a proud expression on his gnarly old face, his big ears flopping slightly. “Kreacher saw that Master Harry was suffering so he cut off the floo for Master Harry to have his peace.”
Hermione tried her best to hide her laughter. Harry managed to look proud at the old house-elf. “That was very good thinking, Kreacher. But now I feel better again. Can you connect the floo again, please?”
Mere moments later the floo worked again and lit up dutyfully when Hermione cast her spell once more. “I have no idea how he did that,” she murmured, then she sat down again and looked at Harry. “I didn't know that Kreacher was still around.”
Harry shrugged. “He’s been working for the Blacks almost his whole life. I thought it cruel to send him away. And I doubt that he would want to be set free. I let him do little things around the house so he can feel useful. But not too much. He's not the youngest anymore.”
Hermione's gaze was soft as she glanced at Harry. Then her expression got serious again. “Okay, so now I know why your floo didn't work and why you didn't answer all those firecalls. But what do you plan to do now? Will you get back to your brooding once I'm gone?”
Harry shook his head. The cold shower had been a wake-up call in more than one way. “No, I won't. Don't worry.”
She studied him for a moment, then she nodded slowly. “Good. You will come to dinner this weekend. Ron misses you.”
Harry could barely avoid to clap his heels at her commanding tone and simply hugged her. “I will.”
She grabbed a handful of floo-powder and threw it in the fireplace. With a clear voice she said her destination and stepped in. Seconds later she was gone.
Lucius stepped out of the fireplace and without thinking he reached out and pulled the younger man in an embrace.
“Don't do that again,” he murmured. Then he seemed to get himself together, cleared his throat, and released Harry again.
Draco wasn't so sentimental. He stepped close to Harry, looked him straight in the eye and said, “You ever do that again, I hunt you down and kill you. You got that?”
Harry swallowed nervously and nodded. Then the younger Malfoy also pulled him in a hug. But a very short, manly one. Astoria snorted and hugged Harry a little longer. “We really were worried,” she whispered into his ear and he felt miserable again. All these people cared about him and he had behaved like a spoiled child. But someone was missing. He stared at the fireplace, willing him to spit out one more person.
“Severus excuses himself,” Lucius said quietly and put a gentle hand on Harry’s shoulder. The young man simply nodded and turned to Hermione who stood in the doorway to the kitchen, looking sorry. He forced a smile on his face, patted Ron on the back and said with forced cheeriness in his voice, “Than we should waste no time and start to eat. I'm starving. What about you all?”
The others hastily agreed and less than ten minutes later, they were seated around the Weasley dining table, talking, laughing, drinking.
And Harry really hoped that no one noticed the occasional tear he wiped away.
But someone did.
Severus turned around, surprised to see Astoria in his room. She trembled with fury.
“I beg your ….”
“Don't you dare!”
Severus shut his mouth with an almost audible click. He felt out of his depth. Never before had the mild mannered Astoria Malfoy nee Greengrass ever raised her voice against him and now that?
She stepped into his room, not bothering to close the door behind her. “You hurt him!” she accused and stepped even closer until she could poke him with one finger. “He hoped to see you tonight. After all, we *all* were invited by Hermione and Ron. You should have seen his face. As if someone had just broken his favourite broom.”
Severus bowed his head so she wouldn't see the pain in his eyes.
“But you were too much of a coward to even appear,” she hissed, her eyes small now. “You broke his heart. You don't deserve him!”
Without waiting for an answer, she turned around and left, closing the door behind her with a bang, leaving behind a bewildered Severus Snape.
“Feel better now, love?” Draco asked when Astoria came back into their bedroom. He had brought Scorpius to bed, singing him a lullaby while at the same time trying to listen to his wife yelling at Severus. Now he was undressing himself while watching her with a smile. She was sweet and gentle but was also a force to reckon with.
She nodded. “I am just not sure I got my point across.”
He passed her by on his way to the en-suite and pressed a kiss to her cheek. “I'm sure you did, love,” he said, “and if not, you at least made him re-think his decision to stay at home tonight.”
She sighed and began to undress as well. “I hope so,” she murmured while she pulled down the zipper on her dress.
Ten minutes later they lay next to each other in bed, snuggling together. Draco had his arms around her, enjoying her warm skin, the soft whisper of her breath and the tickling of her hair against his own skin.
“I feel sorry for them,” she suddenly murmured when he was already on the brink of sleep.
“For whom?” he grumbled.
“For Harry. And Severus. And Lucius.”
This woke Draco a little bit. “Father?” he asked, “What about him?”
She moved back a bit, trying to make out his face in the darkness of their bedroom. “Didn't you see him tonight? The way he hugged Harry? I am certain that he was this close to kissing him.”
He couldn't see it but could imagine the way his wife was holding her thumb and index finger millimetres apart. She cuddled close again.
“If Severus doesn't come to his senses, Harry might decide that he's not worth the heartbreak and choose Lucius.”
“If I wouldn't know you so well, I'd be affronted that you might consider my father only a second choice.”
Astoria laughed gently. “Then it's good that you know me so well,” she murmured and yawned. After a few minutes her breath evened out and she fell asleep, leaving Draco wide awake, thinking about Harry Potter and his father.
And suddenly it seemed not so far fetched. After all … the happiness of his father was more important than anything else. Right?
Lucius was happy. He sat together with Harry over Dinner in a nice Muggle Restaurant in London and revelled in the company. He listened to Harry as he told him animatedly funny stories about potions that had been ordered and that had made him sometimes frown, sometimes gape and sometimes outright laugh.
In return, Lucius told him some gossip fresh out of the ministry, and enjoyed the smiles and laughter he managed to get from the younger man.
Suddenly, in the middle of their conversation, as they raised their wineglasses and clinked them softly, he wondered when exactly he had begun to develop such deep feelings for the younger man who had been his nemesis for so many years. But now, sitting here across from him, gazing into those sparkling green eyes, he could easily imagine having this man in his life for the next years. Or decades.
Just as he was about to reach out and take the younger man's hand in his, an image of Severus flashed through his head. How devastated he had looked the night he had apparated in front of the manor. And he pulled his hand back again.
Severus loved Harry. Had for a long time actually. And he just couldn't take him away from Severus without giving them both a chance. As if reading his mind, Harry said quietly, “How's Severus?”
Lucius balled his hand into a fist underneath the table and smiled. “He was fine when I left him.”
He noticed how Harry began to play with his napkin, slowly tearing it apart. “Does he … does he ever talk? About me, I mean?”
Lucius thought back to his breakfast, about Severus' hurt expression as he had told him who he'd meet for dinner that night. And he nodded. “Yes, he does, Harry.”
Harry's eyes lit up and it cut deep into Lucius' heart.
“What does he say?”
And Lucius began to talk. About the late nights spent with Severus talking about his future. About what he should do, what kind of work he'd be qualified for. Whether he should return to teach at Hogwarts. And what he should do about his feelings for Harry. It was at this part that Harry's eyes began to shine.
“Why did he run away?”
This was the one question that had burned on Harry's tongue ever since that night. Lucius put the teaspoon down with which he had stirred his coffee.
“Severus,” the older wizard finally began, “had always been a very private man. The last person he had loved, had betrayed him. And no,” he continued with a smile, “it hadn't been your mother.”
Harry watched Lucius take a deep breath until he breathed out, “It had been me.”
Surprised, Harry gaped at Lucius. And then understanding dawned. “Back at Hogwarts...” he breathed and Lucius nodded. “Before my father chose Narcissa for me to marry.”
“Did you love him?”
Lucius nodded again. “Don't get me wrong, Harry, I had a wonderful life with Narcissa. She gave me Draco and for that alone I couldn't be more grateful. But there had always been this little part that wondered what could have been. Narcissa and me, we had been friends. Best friends. And she had known about me and Severus.”
“Do you still love him?”
This question hurt, Harry realized. And for a moment he wished he could take it back. He folded his hands on the table in front of him and gazed down at them. A big hand came down to rest on his. Involuntarily, he looked up.
Lucius' silvery eyes were warm and full of emotion. “He was my first love, Harry,” the older man murmured, “so yes, I guess I will always love him. But I'm no longer in love with him. He's my best and oldest friend. That's all.”
Harry noticed the way Lucius accentuated 'with him', and frowned. “Are you in love with someone else?”
Strangely enough, this thought caused his stomach to cramp. But he forced himself to stay relaxed and interested. But instead of getting a smug smile in return, he only got a wistful one.
“You could say so,” Lucius answered and looked out of the window, avoiding Harry's gaze.
After they finished their Dinner they went for a walk, and Harry smiled slightly when the older wizard offered him his arm like a gentleman. As if they were on date. Closing his eyes, he felt the cool night breeze on his face and he imagined what it would be like with Severus by his side. Would he take his hand? Maybe even try to kiss him? He smiled softly. Wondering what those tight lip might feel against his.
“Do you … think of Severus?”
Lucius hesitant voice broke through his thoughts, and he opened his eyes again and turned to the man at his side. It was at this moment that the clouds moved, the moonlight broke through the trees and lit up Lucius' face. Harry could simply stare. The cold light made him seem like a marble statue, his hair shimmering white and his eyes through his blown pupils almost black. Harry felt mesmerized, drawn to this man who looked almost elfish right now.
“Lucius, I...” he breathed, and involuntarily he moved closer to him.
Harry stared at him, his eyes dark in the moonlight, and Lucius saw him moving closer to him. He reached out, intent on touching the pale skin, driving his hands through those dark locks, pressing his lips to those offered to him. He moved closer and closer …
… and turned away with a groan.
“Harry,” he gasped, “don't.”
Harry flinched back as if hit. Lucius immediately regretted his decision. “Wait,” he said, “I ...”
“No!” Harry snapped. “Just … no. You are right. I should go now. I …. good night. And thank you for the Dinner.”
Without waiting for an answer, Harry apparated on the spot and within a heartbeat Lucius was alone.
He stared at the spot where mere moments earlier the boy had been standing. Holding his heart in his hands. He sighed deeply.
This night had not ended the way he had thought it would.
“Do you know what time it is?”
Hermione sounded sleepy. And pissed. Sleepy pissed. Was that even possible? To be sleepy-pissed? And was she more …
“HARRY!” she interrupted his weird running thoughts. “WHAT IS IT?”
“I wanted to kiss Lucius, he said no and now I don't know what to do!” he blurted out, wringing his hands in desperation.
“Step aside, I'll come through,” Hermione ordered, and seconds later she stepped out of the floo.
Harry was a picture of misery and it broke Hermione's heart. “Oh Harry,” she breathed, sat down next to him and took him in her arms. Then she released him, summoned a glass of Firewhiskey, pressed it into his hands and said softly, “Tell me what happened, Harry.”
She listened to him. Comforted him when the memories became to much and when he was at the end, sniffling softly into his Whiskey, she gazed at him and smiled.
“Oh Harry, you can’t make anything easy, hm?”
He looked at her, miserable. “What do you mean?”
She took his hand and pressed it gently. “You have feelings for both of them. And that's okay.”
“How can that be okay, Mione?” he asked angrily. “I'm in love with Severus, kissing Lucius would have been like cheating on him.”
Hermione sighed. Muggle thinking, she thought. And considering the way Harry had been brought up, it was no miracle that he thought it wrong to be in love with a man, let alone two. In the wizarding world it wasn't uncommon for a man or a woman to have more than one spouse. But apparently, no one had bothered to tell that to Harry. So Hermione spent the next twenty minutes to explain Harry the rules of relationships in the Wizarding World. At least the parts most important to him. When she was done, Harry was deeply lost in his thoughts and Hermione let him work through it all in his head.
“So, my feelings aren't wrong?” he finally asked.
“No, Harry,” she replied, relieved that he'd understood. She loved her friend, loved him dearly. And to see him so devastated had nearly broken her heart. For a while now she had watched Lucius and him getting closer. Had watched the blooming friendship with a satisfied feeling in her heart, hoping that Harry would realize that the older wizard was more or less courting him. But he had never been able to forget Severus and his feelings for him.
Now Severus was back. And Lucius apparently had decided to take their relationship a step further, in that confusing Harry mightily-
“You should talk to them,” she said quietly, “to both of them.” She winked at him with a smile. “Maybe they'll surprise you.”
“Do you think so?” he asked with trepidation. She nodded with conviction.
“Give them a chance,” she murmured, “give *yourself* a chance. You deserve all the happiness you can get. And when you find it with Severus and Lucius … go for it.”
She tried unsuccessfully to suppress a yawn and smiled as Harry squeezed her hand gently. “Thank you, 'Mione,” he mumbled, “thank you so much for being my friend.”
“Always, Harry,” she replied, “but now I have to go back to bed. I'm surprised that Ron hasn't shown up until now. Normally, he notices when I leave the bed for too long.”
With a kiss to her friend's cheek she bid him good-bye and left through the floo.
The owl arrived in the early morning, dropping off two letters, one for Severus, one for Lucius. Both recognized the owl immediately as belonging to Harry Potter and for a long moment neither of the men dared to open the letters.
Trying to hide the slight shaking in his hands, Severus finally reached for his and opened it. His eyes flew over the lines, and Lucius saw his old friend turning slightly pale. Then he put it down, reached for his teacup and said with an unreadable expression on his face, “You should open your letter, Lucius.”
Taking a deep breath, Lucius reached for his letter and opened the seal. Seconds later, he let the letter down and gazed at his old friend.
Apparently without any emotion, Severus took a sip from his tea, put the cup carefully down again and continued eating. Quietly, they finished their breakfast then moved to the library with their tea and sat down in opposite chairs.
“What do you think?” Severus finally broke the silence.
“Do you want to go?” Lucius asked back.
With a groan, Lucius let his head drop back. “Yes. No. I don't know.”
Severus blew gently over his steaming cup, and murmured, “I want to.”
Surprised, Lucius gazed at him. “You do?”
Severus nodded, his gaze fixed on the tea in his hands. “I do. He … he cared for me when I was in that unfortunate … condition. Then, when I changed back, he was still there for me. Took me in. And how did I repay him? I molested him in his own bed.” Severus' voice took on a disgusted note. When he looked up, Lucius noted the wistful expression, heard the sigh. “Even before the war, there was something … special about him.” Severus let out a humourless laugh. “I could see it once I was able to pull my head out of my arse. Once I realized that Dumbledore didn't really care for Potter's safety. That for this old, meddling fool Harry was nothing else than a pig, ready to be slaughtered once the time was right. A pawn in a game the boy could only loose.”
Lucius kept quiet, feeling that he would now see a side of his old friend that he hadn't dared to show to anyone before.
“Once I managed to see more in him than James' and Lily's son. He,” Severus broke off, took a deep breath, “he is such a remarkable young man. And to be honest, yes, I want to go tonight. I want to meet him. Even if it's only to be told that he prefers you above me. Then I at least have the confirmation and can go on with my life.” Another of those harsh sounds that was supposed to be a laugh. “And I can once more apologize for being so bold that I dared to molest him.”
Lucius couldn't stand the forlorn expression on Severus' face, got up and knelt down next to his chair. Carefully, he reached for his hand. “Sev, you did not molest him. You kissed him, and as far as I know from what you told me he kissed you back.”
A tiny spark of hope began to bloom in the depths of Severus' obsidian eyes. So Lucius continued, “When we went out to Dinner last night, he asked whether you ever talked about him. He wanted to know everything. What he does *not* know is why you ran away the way you did. And it's eating him up inside.”
“I never meant to hurt him,” Severus said, his voice bare of emotions. Only in the darkness of his eyes, Lucius could see the pain. The pain the man had never allowed himself to show, afraid that others would use it against him.
“I know,” Lucius replied quietly, “and you have to tell him that.” He sat back on his heels. “And what makes you sure that he might choose you over me? Maybe it's the other way around.”
With a smile, Severus leaned closer and gave his old friend a quick kiss on the mouth. “I don't think so,” he said.
Surprised, Lucius looked up at him. “I'm sorry,” Severus murmured, “I shouldn't have ...”
Lucius leaned up and interrupted the other man with a kiss. “Don't be sorry,” he said with a smile, “I am not.”
“What are we going to do now?” Severus asked after a short silence.
“First of all,” Lucius began, and Severus cocked his head slightly in question, “I'm going to get up.” He laughed softly. “I'm not as young as I used to be and kneeling like that for a long time is not good for my knees.”
Interested, he noticed the way Severus' eyes went black at the mentioning of 'young' and 'kneeling', and smiled knowingly.
Astoria smiled at the admittedly weird constellation in front of her. On her left side, in his favourite overstuffed armchair, was Draco, her husband. His face was serious but she could see the little sparkle in his eyes.
On her right side, on the big couch, were Severus and Lucius with Harry in the middle between them. Harry, who looked a little unhappy although this whole meeting had been his idea. With a little urging from her husband.
She agreed to sit on the sideline, taking over the role of the arbitrator.
“So,” Draco began finally after a few long minutes of silence, “we're here because of the...courtship,” Astoria tried to hide her smile at the face her husband made at the word 'courtship', “of Lucius Malfoy and Severus Snape towards Harry Potter.”
Severus' expression was stony as always, Lucius had a slight smile on his face and Harry looked ready to bolt if the panic on his face was any indicator.
“First of all, Harry,” the panicked eyes turned to Draco, “you don't have to be afraid of anything, okay? Is there anything we can do to calm you down? You look like you're about to have a heart attack. Do you have any questions beforehand?”
Harry took a deep breath, turned to Severus and asked, “Am I really such a terrible kisser that you had to run?” Before the confused man could answer, Harry moved to look at Lucius, and continued, “And why didn't you want to kiss me at all?”
Astoria saw that for a moment Severus lost his stony expression. Something like hurt or regret flitted over his face. She leaned slightly forward, curious about what he would answer.
“Harry, it's not … you're not a terrible kisser. Just the opposite is the fact. You were almost too good.”
Harry frowned, his posture slowly relaxing. “I don't understand.”
Severus finally smiled a bit. “If I wouldn't have stopped when I did, I might not have been able to stop at all. You were that good.”
Now Harry blushed and Astoria found it endearing that after all the young man had been through, he still managed to blush like a teenage girl.
“Did you ever think that I wouldn't have wanted you to stop?” Harry asked quietly.
Severus took a deep breath. “Believe me, Harry, I would have loved to continue but not before talking with you about it.” Another deep breath. “But first of all I had to sort through all my new-found memories. I’m sorry that I hurt in the process.”
Lucius had listened quietly to their little conversation. When Harry turned to him, he smiled. Astoria could barely hide a gasp. Never before had she seen her father-in-law smile like that. So tenderly. So completely smitten.
“Kissing you would have been the perfect end of a perfect date,” Lucius murmured and reached out, touching Harry's cheek gently. “But it would have felt like taking advantage of you. You … you talked about Severus so much that it wouldn't have felt right.”
“And now?” Harry's voice was quiet but confident. As an answer, Lucius leaned forward and captured the younger man's lips in a gentle kiss. When they parted again after a few moments, Lucius smiled at the dazed expression in Harry's eyes. “Oh Harry,” he whispered so quiet that she really had to listen closely to hear it, “the things I want to do to you. I want to undress you, kiss you everywhere, want to taste you, want to make you scream.” He kissed his way over his jaw to his other ear and spoke on, “I want to see your face when you come.”
It was Draco who cleared his throat very loudly that broke the spell. That, and the huff of laughter that came from Snape who had watched this whole scenario. It was only because she was concentrating so hard on the three men sitting on her right that she was able to hear Severus' breathed answer, “Me, too.”
With a sigh, she leaned back in her chair, and pressed her legs together. Later that night she really, really needed some alone time with her husband.
Draco watched his father and his godfather and felt a little like he had been pushed into a parallel universe. Not only did they both lust after the same man but after Harry bloody Potter. Then he saw his father smile.
And he swallowed. This was a look he had never before seen on his father. Not even when he had looked at his mother, Narcissa. When he had gazed at her, there had been respect in his eyes, warmth. And sometimes even something close to adoration. But never before had he seen this much love, this deep passion, so much devotion in his father's eyes.
His eyes turned to Severus and there he found the same emotions in the usually so stoic man's face.
“Dates,” Draco finally croaked out, then he cleared his throat. “I suggest you should go on dates. Whether they are double dates or single ones is up to you. But before you go any further in this, I want you to go on dates. To get to know each other. Like civilized wizards.”
Lucius nodded, and Severus moved back to his rigid stance and nodded, too. Draco smiled, satisfied with himself.
Harry reached out to hold hands with both men. “I want a double date,” he said with a strong voice. “I want a date with both of you. You can decide where we will go. You can decide when and you …”
“Harry, no.” Draco interrupted his old nemesis. “This is not how this works. All of you have to decide about the where, the when and … look, can I talk to you in private for a moment?”
Harry looked a little irritated but he agreed and Draco led the young man in to the adjoining room. There, the younger Malfoy poured them both a glass of Firewhiskey, handed one to Harry and softly clinked glasses with him. After taking the first sip, he began to explain the reason for this little meeting.
“Harry, look,” he said, “a triad between three men is quite normal in the wizarding world. I know that Hermione told you that. But … just because you're younger than them doesn't mean that you're inferior to them. Or that they are automatically the dominant part in your relationship and that you have to obey.” He took a deep breath, and continued, “I won't lie to you and say that this whole courting thing between my father, my god-father and you does not freak me out because it does. Big time, to be honest.”
This earned him a small smile from Harry. “And although I love both of them, I am also not blind and I know that they have a lot of flaws. As do you,” he ended with one of his patented smirks.
“But then,” Draco turned around, facing away from Harry, “never before have I seen my father so … happy. So in love with someone. Not even with my mother.” He cast a glance over his shoulder at Harry. “He seems to really care about you. As does Severus.”
Another deep breath, and he moved so he faced Harry again. “I want you to be absolutely sure that you know what you're doing when you enter this triad. Once the courtship starts, interrupting or even ending it would be incredibly cruel.”
Harry nodded. For a few moments, none of them said something, then Harry answered very quietly, “I've loved Severus for so long, I can't imagine what it's like *not* to love him. As for Lucius … the feelings for him sneaked up on me. It was like … turning around one day and there they were. Staring at me. Laughing at me for not noticing it sooner. But I have to admit, him lo... reciprocating these feelings, was more than a surprise.”
He stared over Draco's shoulder, out of the window. “The same goes for Severus.”
“When,” began Draco softly, “when did you realize your feelings for him? As far as I can remember back in school the two of you always seemed to hate each other.”
Another stretch of silence before Harry answered. “Even before I saw his memories in the pensieve, I felt this attraction towards him. I … I never really hated him. I hated that I was attracted to him. That I felt this longing for him.” Harry scrubbed a hand across his neck, and laughed slightly, almost embarrassed. “My first wet dream was about him scolding me in class and I had to serve detention. But my detention was … servicing him, sexually.”
He laughed loud at the pained expression on Draco's face. “Okay, I will stop. No more dreams.”
Draco's relief was evident, and Harry smirked slightly. He thought back to all those long nights in the dormitory, with all the other boys sleeping around him. The silencing-spell was one of the first spells he had learned, and he had perfected it over the years. In the beginning it had been a necessity. His nightmares had been frequent and he'd woken his friends over and over again. Later on it hadn't been his screams that had threatened to wake the others but his moans of lust when he came in waking. Never before, always in the moments of coming. He'd hated it. It had been embarrassing. So the cleaning spell had been the next to learn. He was so deeply lost in thought that a hand on his arm startled him slightly.
“You love them, don't you?” Draco asked quietly, and Harry simply nodded.
“I do,” Harry answered honestly. “I want them in my life. Until last night I never thought that that was even a possibility. And now … yes, I know that I'm not automatically the submissive one.” He glanced at Draco through his bangs, and smiled wickedly. “Except for when I want to be.”
Draco groaned, and then he laughed, clapping Harry on the back. “Okay. I see. You go into this courtship with your eyes wide open.”
Harry nodded, happily. “I do.”
Astoria watched Severus and Lucius sit on the couch like statues, their eyes fixed on the door through which Harry and Draco had disappeared. They remained silent and when the minutes dropped by, she saw Lucius' hand creep across the gap between them and took hold of Severus', gripping it tightly. She hid a smile behind her hand. Merlin, they were gone. So much in love.
When the door opened and her husband and Harry came back in, both men straightened up but never loosened their hold on each other. Seeing that, the dark-haired young man smiled, walked over to them and sat down again between them so that their joined hands were circling Harry from behind.
“So,” Draco said, once they were all seated again, “dates. Dinner dates.”
Both men beamed at the young man between them.
Their first dinner together was a success. They went to the muggle place Lucius had taken Harry at their last dinner. But now they were a party of three. It was nice, Harry decided. Being courted by two men. Having two men have all of their attention focused on him. It was a heady feeling. At the end of the date, when they stood before his front door, they gave him a quick peck on the cheek and left.
On their second date, Harry decided to turn the tables around and made them dinner at his place. He cooked them their favourite dishes and laid the table very carefully. Sparkling crystal glasses, best china porcelain, a very good red wine, and the best food he could think of.
Both men praised his cooking skills, behaved like perfect gentlemen and when they left, Harry received again a kiss from each of them, this time on the mouth and a little longer then the last time.
This went on for several dates until Harry was ready to drag both men into his home like a caveman and tie them to his bed just to relieve some of the sexual tension that had been building over the last weeks.
He told Draco as much when the younger Malfoy had the bad luck to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.
“I can't stand it anymore, Draco,” Harry nearly wailed, ignoring the pained look on the blondee man's face, “to see them all the time and not touch them. Only those little kisses, not even some real snogging is going on.”
With a theatrical sigh, Harry flopped down on his couch. “I want them, Draco, you know that. But the longer this courting goes on, the more frustrated I get. I just ...” Another sigh. “I just want to drag them to bed and make that fantasy come true,” he murmured quietly.
“Okay, Harry, no. Please. I agreed to help you get together with my father and my godfather but I really, really don't want to know any details. So please spare me, yes?”
He sat down next to Harry and patted his knee awkwardly. “I know that I was the one to suggest the courtship. I was the one who wanted to prevent that you would dive in head first into a relationship that could hurt you. But when I look at you now, I get the feeling that it might hurt you even more when you go through with the traditional courtship.”
“I thought I could make it, Draco,” Harry mumbled, his face pressed into the couch-pillow that he hugged tightly to his chest. “But I don't think I can. I just … knowing that I can have them and not being able to do as I want … “
Draco sighed while Harry wallowed in his self-pity.
Later that night, when Draco came home to the manor, he found his father and his god-father snogging on the couch. He sighed when they jumped apart like a pair of school boys.
“Really, father?” he asked, not even trying to hide the desperation in his voice. “Harry is feeling alone and frustrated and all you two can do is snog like a pair of teenagers?”
Both men had the grace to flush slightly. But then Severus frowned. “What did you say about Harry?”
Draco flopped surprisingly graceless on the couch between the two men and sighed dramatically. “I said, he's feeling alone and frustrated.”
“What can we do about it?” Lucius asked now. His face showed a frown similar to Severus'.
“Well,” Draco answered slowly, “first of all you could stop giving me nightmares by snogging like a pair of teenage girls.”
Another blush, a cleared throat from Severus and a light head-slap from Lucius. Then he continued, “And I think it's safe to say that you can proceed in your courting.”
“As in?” Severus wondered, the frown deepened. “We don't want to him to think that we might expect too much from him too soon.”
Draco snorted. “Believe me … give the little prat what he wants and the only one who will be expected too much of will *not* be Potter.”
Lucius laughed when this time it was Draco who was blushing. Because yeah, he had seen the pensieve and he still had trouble to look at his father sometimes.
“So, will you?” he groaned.
“Will we … what?” Severus asked quietly.
“Will you proceed with the courting and finally … give Harry what he wants?”
Both men looked at each other over Draco's head and answered simultaneously, “Yes.”
Harry was extremely nervous the next time he was supposed to meet Lucius and Severus. He didn't know what Draco had told them about their little talk and about Harry's emotional crisis. Tonight they would meet at the Manor for dinner and he knew from Draco that he, Astoria and Scorpius would be there as well. At least in the beginning. Tonight they would take the next – and hopefully last, as far as Harry was concerned – step in their courtship and exchange gifts.
He dressed and re-dressed five times until Hermione threw a pillow at his head and told him to 'suck it up already. They don't care what you wear. Only what is underneath.'
At this point, Harry groaned and hid his face in his hands. “Really?” he'd asked and Hermoine had laughed at him.
Now he was standing in his best robes in front of Malfoy Manor, waiting for the massive gates to open for him. In his pockets he had two vials with some specific memories he had retracted this afternoon as a gift for his two lovers. At least he hoped that they would be his lovers before this night was over.
The gates opened and Harry's heart jumped in his chest.
Dinner was a pleasant affair with excellent food, corresponding wines and light conversation about this and that. Afterwards, they settled in the living-room where Severus and Lucius handed their gifts over to Harry. With slightly shaking hands he took the package from the older of the two man. Opening it, he gasped. In his hands he held an amazingly soft robe in black with trimmings in gold and green, the Slytherin and Gryffindor colours mixed perfectly. He tried the robe on and it fit perfectly. He walked over to him and kissed him gently.
“Thank you, Lucius,” he murmured, and caressed the expensive material of the robe.
Then he opened Severus’ gift and could feel his breath stop for a moment. In his hands he held a box filled with rare and precious potions’ ingredients. Even some things he had not yet managed to get his hands on. He looked up, tears in his eyes. “Where did you get those?” he asked with a hoarse voice.
Severus looked at him with an unreadable expression on his face.
“Some of it I have for a very long time. And after watching you in the lab, I think you might need it.”
Harry smiled. “I might,” he answered. Then he thanked Severus also with a kiss, and smiled when he felt the other man reciprocate it. Then he moved back a little and reached in his pocket. With a deep breath, he pulled the vials out and handed his gifts over to the two men it concerned.
The men held the vials in their hands, gazing at it curiously. Severus was the first to lower his hand to look at Harry.
“I want you to look at it,” Harry said quietly, “I looked at some of your memories,” here he looked specifically at Severus, “so I thought it only fair when you get to look at some of mine.”
“Memories?” Lucius asked, and Severus turned his head to see his old friend still staring fascinated at the slow swirling mist in the small vial.
Harry shrugged. “Memories, fantasies … call it what you want. Who cares?” Then his gaze got intense. “Will you watch it?”
“Yes,” Severus said before Lucius could even open his mouth. He wanted to see the memories in this vial more than anything. Without turning around, he asked Draco, “Do you have a pensieve?”
“Of course,” Draco answered. He gripped Snape's elbow, and led him out of the room in his office. There, Draco left him, and closed the door quietly behind him.
Slowly, Severus opened the vial and let the silver strand slide into the basin before taking a deep breath and diving in.
He found himself next to Harry's bed in the Gryffindor Tower. The child had to be around twelve, and for a moment Severus was irritated. He had never shown any interest in children that young. But then he saw a tell-tale movement underneath the covers and smirked. Ah, youth, where jerking off was a safe way to fall asleep. The movements became faster, almost hectic and then Harry groaned out, “Oh fuck, ohohohoh, oh, yeeeeesssssss, oh Professor, I … oh, heavens, oh Professor Snape, oh Merlin.” And then he sank back into his pillows, with a happy little smile on his face. Severus gaped at the child in the bed, then he felt the familiar tingle of a cleansing charm and the scenery changed.
Harry was older now, maybe around fifteen or sixteen. And he wore a glamour which made Severus wonder why. It was on a night's out in Hogsmeade, and he was surprised to find himself in one of the not so family-friendly areas of Knockturn Alley. But what surprised him even more was the fact that he saw the young man move into a passionate embrace with an older man. A man who could easily be Harry's father. When they turned slightly, Severus gasped.
The man who was snogging Harry within an inch of his life bore a striking resemblance with himself, Severus. Now the man broke the kiss and moved over the young man's jaw down to his collarbone and Harry moaned a quiet, “Sev, yes, please.”
This made the other man chuckle. “You're the first to come with me *because* I look like that old git over at the castle and not instead of.”
Harry growled. “Don't you call him that,” he spit. “You know nothing about Professor Snape so if you want us to continue this, you better hold your tongue.”
The man bit him lightly now, and laughed. “Okay, sweet boy, hold your horses. So I am Professor Snape for you tonight. And who are you? Harry Potter?”
Harry stiffened slightly for a heartbeat but relaxed again almost immediately. “If you want me to,” he purred. The man laughed again, and murmured, “Beauty and the Beast then.”
Harry frowned but gave himself over to the guy again, and the scene changed again.
Looking around, Severus realized that this had to be a dream or a fantasy of Harry for it was a room he didn't recognize. A living-room with a cosy fireplace in which a fire crackled. In front of it was a huge couch and on the couch were Harry and himself. There was nothing overly erotic about this picture and in stepping closer, Severus noticed that the two men on the couch were comfortable resting in each others arms. It was an incredibly domestic scene. One that spoke of trust and familiarity. Of love and commitment. Then he gasped when he saw Lucius enter the picture, carrying a small tablet in his hands with a bottle of wine and three glasses on it. With a smile, he put the tablet down, gave each man a little kiss and then he wormed his way between them, sighing happily when he received gentle kisses in return from both of them.
Slowly, Severus pulled his head out of the pensieve and gripped its edges tightly. Hope bloomed in the depths of his heart.
Lucius stood in front of the pensieve, insecure whether or not he should dive in or not. Fantasies, Harry had said. Memories, fantasies, who cares, he had said.
He broke through the shimmering surface, seeing the familiar black swirls surround him. Then he saw Harry and himself at their walk through the park after their not so successful date. But in this fantasy, it ended differently. This time Lucius didn't move back but moved closer.
This time he reached for Harry, cradled the younger man's face gently in his hands and pulled him close for a deep, passionate kiss. And Harry reciprocated the kiss.
Tendrils of dark swirls surrounded him and the scene changed. Lucius swallowed. It was one of his lesser moments, he noticed. He saw himself drinking Firewhiskey like water, saw Harry walk in with Draco draped over his shoulder. Saw how Harry dropped his son on the bed, and walked downstairs again. He looked into every room, seemingly searching for something.
Finally, he entered the library in which Lucius lay passed out on the couch, in his hand a half-filled glass of Whiskey. Harry made his way over to him, pried the glass out of his hand and set it on the nearby table. Then he knelt down next to the Lucius and almost tenderly stroked over his stubbly cheek.
“Oh, Lucius,” the young man sighed, “everyone has forgiven you. If now you only could forgive yourself.” With a wave of his hand, he summoned an afghan and draped it over his unconscious form. He stood up, but before he left he bent down once more and pressed a gentle kiss to Lucius forehead, then he hesitated for a heartbeat and pressed another kiss to his mouth.
Black mist swirled around him, blocked his gaze before it revealed a bedroom unbeknownst to him. Blinking a few times to clear his vision, he moaned at the display in front of him.
Of himself, laying in the middle of the bed with Harry writhing atop of him, riding him and groaning out his name again and again. He slowly stepped closer and now he was able to see the love and passion on Harry's and on his own face. He gasped quietly as the image of himself began to move faster, driving his hard cock deeper and deeper into Harry's willing body until he exploded with a shout, pushing the young man over the edge who came with a yell of his name, painting his chest with his semen.
Darkness surrounded him once more before it parted before him like a curtain. Another unknown bedroom, another unknown bed. A huge four-poster bed with dark curtains around it. In the middle of dark blue sheets was he himself. He looked closer and his hands began to tremble. Was this what the young man wished for them to become? What he wanted them to give him?
He saw himself laying in the middle of the bed, with Severus on his left side. Severus had turned away from him but he could see that he had his head on Lucius' arm, and his back pressed to his side, maintaining contact even in sleep. His black, silken hair was spread out over Lucius pale skin like a raven's wing.
On his other side he could make out a familiar mop of dark, unruly hair.
Cuddled close, with one arm resting over Lucius' abdomen, he was sleeping peacefully. Every now and then his fingers twitched in sleep and when he moved too much, clearly in the grip of a nightmare, Lucius would pull him a little closer, calming the youngest one instantly.
Slowly, Lucius came back to reality. And took a deep breath.
“What did you see?”
Severus' voice made him turn around. For a long moment he stared at his old friend who was sitting on a settee nearby, then he smiled a little crooked. “He wants us. The boy...”
“...is not a boy anymore,” Severus interrupted him. Lucius walked over to him, his knees still a little shaky, and sat down next to him.
“Don't I know that?” he murmured, and once more rested his head against Severus' bony shoulder. “He could have anyone. Everyone. And yet he wants us.”
“Two old, beaten-up ex-Death-Eaters who are almost twice his age,” Severus agreed, then he smirked slightly and continued, “at least in my case. You're even older than me.”
He laughed softly when Lucius jerked up and attempted to playfully hit him. Lucius stared for a few heartbeats at the other man before he leaned in and pressed a kiss to Severus' mouth.
“It is far too seldom that I see you laugh, Sev.” He reached for his hand and pressed it as he kissed him again, this time a little deeper. “Let's do this.”
Severus looked slightly dazed but there was still a smile playing around his mouth. Lucius smiled, pulled him up and together they left Draco's office.
Maybe this could work out after all.
Harry was nervous. Severus hadn't come out Draco's office after watching his vial. Instead, Lucius had joined him soon after. Now both men were in there and Harry was waiting in the living room, watching how Astoria played with Scorpius.
Finally, he couldn't wait any longer. He got up and began to pace nervously.
“What is taking them so long?” he whined, gazing at Astoria. Scorpius had managed to grip a strand of her hair and was pulling on it, making her wince.
“I do not know what you decided to show them,” she began and raised a hand when he opened his mouth to answer, “and I do not *want* to know, believe me.”
He smiled lopsidedly, nodded, and sat down again.
Carefully, Astoria removed Scorpius' fingers from her hair, and continued, “But I think they might have to talk about some things after they both watched the vials you gave them. After all, in concerns both of them, doesn't it?”
Harry nodded. He had always liked Astoria but when he saw how she handled everything that went on at the moment, his respect for her grew more and more.
“Thank you,” he said quietly, and surprised she looked up.
“For your help. With Draco. With Lucius.” He made an all-encompassing gesture. “With everything.”
Astoria smiled, lifted Scorpius on her hip, walked over to Harry and gave him a peck on his cheek. “You are family, Harry.”
He blushed slightly. “Not yet,” he murmured, but she silenced him with a look.
“You were family even before you started dating my father-in-law.” Her face was serious. “I will never forget what you did for Draco when Lucius couldn't be there for him.”
Harry looked down at his hands folded in his lap. “He would have done the same for me,” he mumbled not very convincingly.
“Would he?” Astoria mused then she straightened up again, and pressed a loving kiss to Scorpius' temple who was cuddled up to her, one thumb in his mouth, his eyes almost closed. “If you would excuse me. This little man here needs his beauty-sleep.” She turned around and left the room.
Harry's gaze followed her, and he smiled when he replayed her words in his head.
It sounded good.
Draco watched from the door how his wife and Harry talked quietly. A few years ago, he would have hexed Potter into next week for daring to speak to his Astoria but the times had changed. Nowadays he considered the other man a friend. Maybe even his best friend. It had taken a war, some very unfriendly people and a trial in front of the Wizengamot for him to discover what friendship really meant. And to realize that Crabbe and Goyle had been hanger-ons and nothing more. They had liked, that because of him, Draco, and his actions the other kids had been afraid of them. But they had also feared him and had left him as soon as the winds had changed and when in the end he had stood in front of the Chief Warlock, he had been alone.
Except for Harry Potter, the Boy-With-The-Saviour-Complex who had been on his side. Who had fought for him. Who had fought like a wolf to exonerate Snape and all of the Malfoys. Who had not only managed to keep them out of Azkaban but who had made it seem as if they were heroes just like he himself was until the Wizengamot had no other chance than to grant them the Order of Merlin. First class none the less.
His own rested in a drawer of his office desk. He didn't care about it too much. Maybe in a few years he would show it to Scorpius when they were teaching about the war in History classes at Hogwarts.
He startled when Astoria moved past him, breathed a kiss on his cheek and murmured, “I’ll put him down to sleep. He's tired.”
With a smile he walked into the living-room, grinning when he noticed Potter sitting there, staring at the door to his office as if he could open it through sheer willpower alone. He walked over to the liquor cabinet, poured two glasses of Firewhiskey and after walking over to the couch, handed one to Harry.
“You look like you might need it.”
Harry startled heavily, stared up at Draco, then down at the glass in his hand and back to Draco. Then he shook his head slightly, smiled and took the proffered glass. “Thank you,” he murmured.
Quietly, they sat next to each other and stared at the door. Together. After another ten minutes, Draco could feel Harry leaning closer to him, his weight became heavier and five minutes later, the dark head sank against his shoulder and the excitement finally took its toll and the young man fell asleep.
And that was how Lucius and Severus found them when they emerged from the office.
Although it was his own son Harry rested against, Lucius felt a dark wave of jealousy crash over him and it was only Severus' tight grip on his wrist that held him back and made him see reason after a few moments. He took a deep breath.
“I think we should call it a night,” he said quietly and smiled when he saw Harry stirring slightly.
“Do I,” Harry began and yawned widely, “do I have to go home?”
Everything in Lucius screamed to simply say, 'You *are* at home,' but Draco beat him to it and simply said, “Not if you don't want to. We have a lot of lovely guest rooms.”
Now the young man seemed a little more awake. He winked at the two older man and asked with a mischievous glint in his eyes, “Does one of your lovely guest rooms happen to have a bed big enough for three?”
Lucius swallowed. Oh Merlin, yes indeed. All of them were fitted to the highest standards. *His* highest standards and all had beds in them that could easily fit three or even four persons. He nodded, and the smirk on Harry's face turned into a gentle smile. “Then let's go. I'm tired.”
“I had the house-elves prepare the green room in the east wing for you,” Draco said quietly, and Lucius smiled.
“That's very considerate of you,” he answered and hugged his son with one arm. Draco blushed slightly and huffed. “Oh please,” he replied, “we all knew how this night would end, right? With Harry climbing up the walls in his sexual frustration,” he ignored the yelped, “DRACO!” from his friend and continued, “and you and Uncle Sev barely able to keep your hands to themselves,” this was followed by a smirk from the dark-haired man and an almost embarrassed grin on his father's face, “I knew that you would need a bedroom. So I had Pippin prepare the one with the biggest bed.”
This time it was Draco's turn to smirk when all three of them seemed to blush simultaneously. He left them with the good feeling that tomorrow morning at breakfast he would be able to tease them mercilessly. Another thought struck him and just before he walked out of the room, he turned around once more and added, “And don't forget the Silencing Charms.”
He grinned at the sputtering he heard behind him.
Severus undressed slowly once it was his turn in the bathroom. Harry had been first, followed by Lucius and he had been the last. He tried to avoid a look in the mirror for he knew what he would see. A middle-aged, worn-out Death Eater who had nothing to offer. And outside this room were two handsome men waiting for him to come out. And there it was again, his old insecurity raising its ugly head. He quickly did his business and when he was done, he rested his hands on the sink, lowered his head and tried to gather enough courage to leave.
He got so lost in his own head that he didn't even hear the opening of the bathroom door. So he startled when a big warm hand descended on his shoulder and a smaller one on his back. He looked up into the mirror and found himself under the intense stare of his two men.
“Are you alright?” Harry asked carefully, and Severus hated himself a little bit for the worry he saw in those dark-green eyes. Warm lips pressed on his shoulder and his eyes in the mirror flitted to the other side. “I know what you think,” Lucius murmured, and stroked the naked shoulder gently, “and I say to you: stop it!”
“Lucius, I...” he began but the other man simply shut his mouth with a kiss and murmured a strict, “No!”
Severus huffed out a laugh, and slowly shook his head. “I shouldn't feel like that,” he mumbled barely audible, “shouldn't want you two the way I do.”
Another kiss, this time on his other shoulder, from Harry. His own dark eyes met green ones.
“Come to bed,” Harry said quietly, “just to sleep. I'm tired. I think we all are.”
Severus nodded, and gestured for them to go ahead. With one last, deep sigh, he switched off the light and followed the two other men into the bedroom. There he stopped for a moment, gazing at the bed. Lucius was on the side away from the bathroom which put Harry in their middle. Slowly, Severus walked over to the bed and carefully laid down. Moments later he gasped when a surprisingly clingy Harry wrapped himself around him, making little purry noises. A few minutes later, the young man was completely relaxed and snored softly.
When he took a deep breath to say something, a hand gently covered his which rested on the young man’s back.
“Not now, Severus,” Lucius whispered, “not tonight. Let’s talk tomorrow.”
Severus swallowed but then he nodded. “Yes,” he croaked hoarsely, “tomorrow.”
Harry woke up the next morning surrounded by warmth. And with the very pleasant feeling of a hard cock nestled at his backside. Without opening his eyes, he pushed back against the enticing length, moaning softly. When he felt soft lips on his shoulder, he sighed a happy, “Severus,” and was disappointed when the lips disappeared. But then panic gripped him for a moment and he tensed. Oh Merlin no, not again, he thought frantically. Not another lover pissed at him for moaning the wrong name at the wrong time. But then he heard a soft laughter and with that sound came the memories from the night before flooding back at him. He opened his eyes and glanced directly into Severus’ black ones. Relieved, he leaned closer and kissed him gently.
“Oh thank Merlin,” he breathed, “for a moment I was afraid that I might have affronted another guy again.”
Another laughter, this time from behind him, made him turn around. “Again?” Lucius asked with a sparkle in his eyes. Harry could feel himself blush as he nodded. “Yes,” he murmured, “again. Don’t ask,” he groaned when he could see Severus open his mouth. “It’s too embarrassing. Just let me say that there have been too many guys storming off because I moaned Severus when I came.”
Lucius laughed out loud when he heard that and even Severus smirked. With a playful growl, Severus rolled Harry on his back and came to rest atop of him, making Harry moan in delight at finally feeling the right Severus, the *real* Severus, pressing him down into the mattress.
“You came moaning my name, Harry?”
Harry shivered when he heard the silken voice close to his ear and he could only nod in agreement. He was captivated by the older man’s dark eyes which seemed to look directly into his soul.
“I love you,” he whispered, then he turned to Lucius who lay beside them, propped up on one elbow. “And you, too.”
Lucius smiled softly, leaned in and kissed him passionately. “I love you, too, Harry,” Lucius breathed and then he smirked, “but don’t let me interrupt you two. You were just starting something, weren’t you?”
Harry turned back to the man above him. “Were we, love?”
A mighty shiver run over the older man’s body when he heard Harry call him ‘love’, and Harry seemed surprised how much this one word affected Severus. Severus leaned down and kissed him, softly, gently. And was not prepared for the hunger with which his gesture was met. He moaned when an insistent tongue dove into his mouth and strong hands pushed his shirt from his shoulders. Another pair of hands was busy pulling his trousers down and out of the way. Ah, Lucius, Severus thought, always the practical one. Then he groaned when he met his young lover’s naked skin for the first time. A groan that was echoed by the man underneath him. His hands stroked over soft skin and hard muscles. It was intoxicating to feel the man he had dreamed of for so long, to hear all those little noises he made when Severus’ hands found another erogenous spot on his lover’s body.
When he finally was able to break free of Harry’s addicting kisses, he turned to his right, gazing directly into Lucius’ eyes that were almost black with desire.
“Merlin,” the older wizard gasped, “you two are so beautiful, you’ll give me a heart-attack before you’re finished.”
“No, we won’t,” Severus murmured, “I know that you can handle a little … excitement.”
Harry began to shake with laughter and Severus looked down at him, frowned, and then back at Lucius. “See what you’ve done? You ruined the mood.”
A hand moved to his neck and clever fingers played with his hair. “No, he didn’t,” Harry smiled up at him, “now would you please … oh, yes, Lucius, yes, there … I … Sev, please … please continue.”
Severus watched as Lucius reached over and gently rolled one of the young man’s nipples between his thumb and his forefinger, causing Harry to momentarily loose his train of thought. Then he bowed down again and – as his young lover had ordered – continued his exploration of the soft skin under his lips.
It was intoxicating to hear Harry’s little gasps, his barely contained groans and his nearly desperate little cries as soon as Severus engulfed the young man’s erection with his lips. The grip in his hair tightened and he smiled around the hard length. The sweet tasting precum made him moan in delight and he sucked harder, wanting to taste more, to taste it all. He wanted to feel Harry loose control, wanted him to spill his release with a helpless shout in his lover’s mouth. From the corner of his eyes, he could see how Lucius caressed Harry’s chest, played with his nipples which caused the young man to arch his back and push his cock even deeper in Severus’ mouth.
Suddenly a strong hand closed around his own cock and with a harsh shout Severus let Harry’s cock drop from his mouth.
“Lucius,” he gritted out between clenched teeth, “if you want this to be more than just a quick … interlude you should release your grip right this moment.”
“Should I?” Warm breath ghosted over his ear and the grip tightened even a bit more. “But I love to see you come.” His voice grew a little louder. “You should see him come, Harry. The way the pleasure washes over his face, how his whole body shudders in that one moment of utter and total bliss. The way he moans when the warm liquid hits his skin. And then afterwards the peace on his face when...”
Warm semen splattered over both men and took them completely by surprise. Wide-eyed they gazed at Harry who had one arm over his eyes and was panting harshly. “You can’t … talk … like that … and expect me …. not to … react,” he gasped between breaths. The young man took a deep breath, and continued, “especially not when I have two gorgeous men hovering above my cock.”
Severus groaned when he noticed the playful sparkle in Lucius’ eyes and before he could warn Harry, the older man leaned in and licked the cooling cum from Harry’s skin, making the young man cry out in surprise. Strong hands reached out and buried themselves in silken, white-blondee hair, and pulled him a little closer. With a smile, Lucius complied and cleaned Harry’s skin.
Severus’ hand slid over his back, and Lucius purred softly while he licked his young lover’s skin clean. The taste exploded on his tongue and he moaned quietly. Then a little louder when the fingers in his hair tighten a little bit. He followed the tug of those hands until his mouth found Harry’s and they kissed. It was a kiss full of emotions, full of love, tenderness and desire.
The next hours went by in a whirl of touches, kisses, moans and gasps. Bodies were intertwined in passion. Feeling those two extraordinary men surrounding him, touching him, making him come again and again, making him feel loved was something Lucius had never thought he would ever experience.
When they finally collapsed upon each other, sweat and other bodily fluids cooling on their skins, he closed his eyes, smiling when he felt the tingling of a cleaning charm. For long moments they said nothing, simply revelling in the closeness of the other men. Lucius drew simply patterns with his fingers on Harry’s back and caressed with his other hand Severus’ silken strands.
“I used to dream about this,” Harry admitted after a long silence and cuddled a little closer to Lucius, pulling Severus’ arm across his waist.
“Did we live up to your expectations?” Lucius heard Severus’ grumble. Before the young man could answer, a Patronus came through the closed bedroom door and hopped onto the bed. Lucius recognized the sleek cat with the torn up ear immediately.
“Hello Draco,” he greeted the Patronus friendly, “is there anything we can do for you?”
The cat sat down and stared almost accusingly back at him. “Good morning, father,” the cat said, “you forgot about the Silencing Charm, didn’t you?”
Lucius felt himself blush. Darn. He had been so lost in the heat of the moment that he, indeed, had forgotten about putting up the Spell.
“Yes, I did. I am sorry,” he acknowledged, “did we disturb you much?” He tried in vain to ignore the giggling of his two companions that currently were not even trying to behave themselves. The Patronus snorted which looked incredibly cute at the scruffy little cat and even Lucius had to smile at that. Then he remembered that the Patronus could deliver massages but not really reply to them so he said, “Please, tell my son I am sorry and we will be down shortly. Thank you.”
The Patronus yawned, then he stretched himself, jumped elegantly down from the bed and disappeared through the door.
“I think we are expected downstairs,” grumbled Severus after a few seconds of silence but Lucius slid down again, pulled his two men close and with a very satisfied sigh closed his eyes.
“No,” he finally murmured, “not yet. He’s my son, not my father. So it’s still me who decides when I get up. Not him.”
Then he moaned softly when he felt Harry move against and then on top of him.
“Yes, love?” he asked quietly.
“How much time do we have?” Harry asked, gently undulating his hips with his re-awakening erection against his. Lucius smiled when he felt Severus skid closer and his own cock harden.
“What do you need, love?” he purred.
“You,” Harry gasped and moved a little so that Lucius’ cock was sliding over his entrance. Then he turned to Severus and gave him a lopsided smile. “Or you. Right now, I don’t care. I just want to get fucked.”
Lucius moaned at this sentence, and involuntarily, he pulled Harry a little closer while simultaneously pushing his hips up. But before he could react in any way, Severus was sitting up, put a hand in Harry’s neck and kissed him deeply. “How about I fuck you first and when I’m done with you, he can take my sloppy second?” Severus growled and suddenly Lucius wasn’t quite so sure he would survive this after all. Because no-one could survive getting all he ever wanted handed to him on a silver platter, right?
“Sounds amazing,” their young lover panted right this moment, and Lucius knew, he just knew that his part would be embarrassingly short.
Merlin, he wanted so much. And for the first time in his life it seemed as if he was allowed to want. His want was reciprocated.
He looked into those green eyes that had haunted him for so many nights, and when he turned his head a little bit, his dark gaze was captured by silver-grey eyes that used to be so cold but were so warm now. His thoughts were interrupted by a breathless, “Sev...Severus, please. Don’t tease me.”
Those green eyes were almost black and he kissed him again, groaning when Harry kissed him back enthusiastically.
“How do you want to do this?” he murmured while his hand slipped down and played with a nipple, causing the other man to gasp again. Merlin, he loved this sound.
“I,” Harry swallowed, “want to stay here. Over Lucius. And you behind me. So when you’re done with me, all I have to do is stay still so Lucius can push inside me.”
In his head, Severus counted to ten. In Greek. And then to twenty. Just to be safe. He accio’ed a little pot of lube and slicked his fingers before he put a hand on the other man’s back, gently bending him.
“Lean forward,” he mumbled, “lean forward and kiss him. It might distract you a little from the pain.”
“Merlin, Sev, I’m hardly a virgin,” Harry snorted, “I can take a little stretching. Just hurry or I might be tempted to push you down and simply straddle you and ride you until I come. Or until you come. Whatever happens first.”
Without warning, Severus pushed two fingers inside the young man’s ass. No virgin, huh? Maybe it was time to teach the pup a new trick or two. The stretching was quick and a little dirty with Lucius distracting the young man indeed up until to the point where he barely noticed Severus pulling his fingers out and not quite so slowly pushing his cock in.
As soon as he bottomed out, he stayed perfectly still.
It was amazing.
And so much better than anything he’d ever felt.
Feeling Severus finally inside of him, Harry closed his eyes and let his head drop back onto the older man’s shoulder.
“This is it,” he thought, “this is what I wanted all my life.”
“Is it?” an amused voice asked, and Harry slowly opened his eyes, gazing down into Lucius’ silvery ones. For a moment he didn’t know what the other man was talking about, then he blushed furiously.
“Did I say that out loud?” he whispered, and the man beneath him nodded. “You did.”
Harry was silent for a moment then he felt the hard cock in his ass, felt gentle hands roaming over his skin, soft lips kissing his shoulder almost reverently. He looked at Lucius and saw only warmth and love and acceptance, and he nodded. “It’s true,” he murmured, and pushed slightly back, causing Severus to moan. “And now make me forget my name,” he said, turning his head so he could kiss his dark-haired lover.
And Severus did. It didn’t take too long for Harry to forget not only his name but also the fact that there was again no Silencing Charm around their bedroom. He panted, gasped, moaned, screamed when his clever lover managed to hit his happy spot with almost every stroke and after a surprisingly short time, Harry knew that it would take only a handful of thrusts and he would come.
“Merlin, Sev,” he panted, “I’ … m …. Merlin, yes, please, there, I’m ... coming, I … I ...”
And with a broken moan he came, painting Lucius’ chest with his seed. Severus behind him growled at the sight before him and began to thrust harder into his body, and Harry enjoyed every second of it. Knowing that now it was only for the pleasure of his lover was exhilarating, and it made him feel so good. The harsh fucking was lasting a few minutes more until Harry felt Severus’ grip on his hips tighten and with a sound close to bark the older man came, emptying himself in Harry’s body.
Harry sighed happily. Then he gave a soft shout when one lover pulled out and the other pushed in, giving him next to no time to adjust. Harry smiled dreamily down at Lucius who was holding him close to his chest while he pushed his cock in his hole again and again.
It was short, he had to admit. Lucius came after a few thrusts, crying out, his eyes closed in bliss, his head thrown back on the pillow, white-blonde hair like a halo around his head, while Severus in all his dark beauty kissed his throat.
Feeling satisfied like never before, Harry remained where he was, sitting on top of his lover, feeling his erection slowly soften inside him. It was addicting.
“What have we done, Sev’rus,” Lucius slurred with a very content smile, turning his head so he could bestow a gentle kiss upon his second lover, “we have created a monster. Look at him, sitting there, smiling like the kneazle that not only got the cream but also the bird.”
Severus smiled up at Harry whose hands were lazily stroking Lucius’ smooth chest, and nodded.
“And we wouldn’t want it any other way. Because from now on, he is *our* monster.”
Draco was almost certain that he was scarred for life. No child should ever have to listen to his father having sex with someone, let alone two someones. And especially not when one of those someones was nearly the age of said child.
He was severely tempted to bang his head against the next available hard surface until all those noises would leave his head again but he decided against it.
Mostly because Astoria was sitting next to him and was simply laughing at him.
“Don’t laugh, love,” he whined, “it’s not funny.”
She gave him a gentle kiss on his lips. “Aren’t you happy for your father?” she asked quietly.
He sighed deeply, rested his head against her shoulder and intertwined his fingers with hers.
“I am, love. I really am. But do I really have to listen to his … happiness?” Merlin, he hated how close he sounded to whining but he simply couldn’t help himself. Especially not when his wife had to laugh even harder at that.
“But you know what’s the best of all?” she gasped between two bouts of laughter, and when he shook his head, she whispered in his ear, “You have to look at them later when they come down for breakfast. And you will know *exactly* what they did!”
With a groan, Draco buried his head in his pillow while Astoria doubled over with laughter.
“I can never look Draco in the eyes again,” Harry mumbled as he stood in front of the mirror, trying to tame his hair but giving up because no matter what he did it still looked as if four hands had run repeatedly through it. But that was not the worst. No, the worst were the hickeys and love-bites that were adorning his neck and his shoulders. For a moment he considered to wear a glamour but before he could even finish the thought, two hands descended on his shoulders.
“Leave it, love,” Lucius murmured, pride in his eyes.
“That is, unless you are ashamed of this.” Severus gently touched one of the love-bites that would be visible above even the highest collar.
“Never,” Harry affirmed his lovers. He squared his shoulders. “I love showing these.” Both of his lovers beamed at him, and yes, seeing Severus almost grinning was still slightly unsettling for Harry. But he was sure that he would get used to it. He grabbed their hands, pulled them to the door and stopped there. Gazing up at both of them, he took a deep breath and when he nodded, Lucius opened the door and they made their way downstairs to meet the others for breakfast.
The first few minutes breakfast was very quiet and a little forced. There were sideways glances, the occasional clearing of the throat and of course the barely hidden touches.
It took Astoria all of five minutes until she was ready to give up on the tension. Slowly and carefully, she put down her napkin although she would have loved to throw it down just to make a point.
“So, Lucius,” she addressed her father-in-law, “I take it your first night together went well?”
Oh, this was going to be fun she thought as she watched him splutter. Harry was snorting his coffee out through his nose, Severus got his cereal down the wrong pipe, coughing heavily, and even her husband blanched. “Astoria,” he croaked, “how can you...”
A hand on his stopped him and he looked up, right into his father’s eyes. “It’s alright, son,” Lucius said quietly, before he turned to Astoria. “Very well, my dear. Even if it may sound a bit … sappy, I can safely say I finally feel whole.”
Astoria smiled sweetly. “Oh, I’m sure about that,” she purred, “we all heard how … whole … you felt this morning.”
Severus, who had just stopped coughing, groaned and she was sure that it was only his dignity that stopped him from banging his head on the table. Harry seemed to be wanting nothing more than to slip under the table and hide. Or jump up and run away as fast and as far away as possible.
Lucius though … Lucius seemed to be proud. And she couldn’t remember one single day on which the older man had looked so at peace with himself and the world. And then he surprised her when he leaned to Severus and kissed him softly, repeating the gesture with Harry.
“Ah yes,” he admitted, looking not in the least guilty, “sorry about that.” But he didn’t look guilty in the slightest. Astoria laughed softly at that. It seemed as if family gatherings had just become even more interesting in the future.
About half a year later, Lucius, Severus and Harry found a house to live in. It wasn’t as impressive as Malfoy Manor but still more than Privet Drive, Grimmauld Place or Spinner’s End. When they had decided that they would all live together, there had been the problem of finding the perfect place.
And of course the problem of convincing Lucius that while yes, the Manor was a very big house, that no, it did *not* mean they could move in there.
Severus still liked to scare poor Draco with certain noises every now and then, and even though Harry really loved to wind his former nemesis up, after a while he felt sorry for the man. So, no, moving into Malfoy Manor to live together with Draco, Astoria and their innocent little boy was definitely not an option.
They went to each of the Malfoy properties but finally Harry fell in love with a two-story house about half an hour away from Malfoy Manor. It had the perfect size for the three of them. Small enough so they could spend their time together but also big enough should one of them need some privacy. But it was the spacious cellar that Harry could turn into an amazing potion’s lab.
It was surprisingly easy for him to leave 12 Grimmauld Place, he realized. After the war, the place had become some sort of refuge for him. A place to hide and to work in peace, with only the swan as company. Now he wanted more. More space, more room to breathe. More company.
It took them less than a day to bring all of his belongings to the house, and wistfully Harry noticed how little it was that he had his heart set upon. A hand descended on his shoulder and he knew from the firm pressure that it was Severus.
“Is that all, Harry?” he asked, and the young man nodded. He didn’t want to look at his lover, didn’t want to see the pity. More than three years of his life was in front of him. And it would all fit in one trunk.
A hand on his other shoulder. Lucius. Recognizable through the slow stroking motions.
“Whatever you need, my love, we will get you,” he murmured softly, and Harry nodded. He turned to Severus. “I need a new potion’s lab. Will you help me to set it up?”
The expression on the man’s face was gently. “It would be my pleasure,” was his reply. Harry reciprocated the smile and took hold of Severus’ hand, pressing it gently.
Three days later, Harry beamed with pride when he stood in the middle of his new lab, Severus next to him. With the help of the experienced potion master it was even better than his old one at Grimmauld Place. When he said as much to Sev, the older man simply put on his old familiar sneer and commented, “Of course it is better now, Potter!”
Then he laughed out loud when the younger man practically pounced on him and nearly threw him on the floor. He moaned when he suddenly felt magic wash over his skin and moments later his robes were open and his complete front was revealed to his young lover’s hungry gaze. Wasting no time, Harry dropped down to his knees, and seconds later Severus buried his hands with a groan in silky dark locks as Harry thanked the potions master enthusiastically for his help.
A few minutes later, he came down that wonderfully warm throat with a deep moan. Harry got up and wiped his mouth on his sleeve, grinning at the dark-haired man.
“Now that’s a nice sight to come home to,” came a voice from the door, and both of them turned around, gazing at Lucius who was leaning against the door-frame, watching them with a tender expression on his face.
“Feeling left out?” Harry asked with an impish grin. Lucius slowly walked closer until he reached them, putting his arms around both of his lovers.
“Oh no, love,” he murmured against Harry’s temple, “I’m fine. It was a pleasure watching you two.” Severus closed his eyes and rested his head on his old friend’s shoulder. He smiled when he felt warm lips on his forehead. “And I always love seeing you happy, Sev,” the older man murmured, “it’s been far too long since I’ve seen you so carefree.”
“It’s been far too long,” he whispered, “since I felt so loved.”
Two sets of arms closed around him, and when a few tears fell they were happy tears, being gently wiped away by his lovers.
Marlowe ‘Marlie’ Malfoy, younger sister of Scorpius and older sister of Nicolas Malfoy, was sitting behind the enormous Christmas tree that dominated the main hall of Malfoy Manor, and watched the people around her.
There were her brothers of course, the aforementioned Scorpius and Nicolas. Her parents Draco and Astoria. Her grandparents slash uncles Lucius, Severus and Harry and so many more people, Marlie felt incapable of remembering all their names. She just knew that a lot of them were somehow related to her, one way or another.
She oomphed slightly when her cousin Abby – short for Abigail - plopped down next to her.
“Why are you hiding here?” the young girl asked. Her red hair fell down in fiery waves, and Marlie knew that she had inherited it from her grandmother on Uncle Harry’s side, but her eyes were the warm gray from her granddad Lucius. With a little huff Marlie sat back, and huddled a little closer into her corner.
“I don’t like so many people,” she finally admitted to the seven-year-old, “and they’re all just here because of Nicolas anyway. You know that tomorrow is his birthday and they’re all waiting for his letter from Hogwarts.”
Abby nodded seriously, then cuddled up to Marlie, yawning. Marlie gazed down at her for a moment before she put her arm around her shoulder. Personal space was something that her uncles seemed to be unaware of, constantly touching each other, hugging and kissing. So it seemed to be natural for their children to act the same way around their extended family. Marlie could feel the small body grow heavy against her and knew that her cousin was about to fall asleep. She smiled slightly when she saw Severus, one of Abby’s dads, made his way towards her. He knelt down in front of her hide-out and reciprocated her smile. “Comfortable?” he asked with his dark voice, and she nodded. But then she grimaced slightly and whispered, “But my arm is gonna fall asleep.”
Severus’ smile deepened and he reached out for Abby. Without opening her eyes, the little girl slid over to her daddy and cuddled up in his arms. With a little groan, her uncle got up ad walked over to his husbands who cooed over the sleepy girl. Lucius finally took Abby from Severus, gave the dark-haired man a gentle kiss on the lips before turning to leave. Most probably to bring their daughter to bed. On his way out, he passed by his other husband, and bestowed upon him the same treatment. After that the door closed behind him.
Marlie looked around until she found her father. He was gazing after her granddad Lucius while he was standing next to Aunt Hermione who was heavily pregnant with her fourth child. Uncle Ron was busy gossiping with Aunt Luna who tenderly stroked a kneazle which was curled up on her lap. Her mother was sitting on an elegant couch with little Nicolas on her knees. The ten, almost eleven year old boy was resting against their mother’s shoulder, fast asleep. She smiled at the sight, and almost squeaked when her older brother crawled in next to her.
“We’re lucky, sister,” he murmured as he skidded closer to where she sat.
“Lucky how?” she asked him back, and let her eyes roam over the people that mingled in the great hall.
“Lucky in that we grew up surrounded by them.” He made an all encompassing gesture. “I mean … *look* at them!”
Now Marlie took a closer look. She saw how her father put his arm around her mother when he stood next to her. It was an absent-minded gesture, something so normal and natural that he didn’t even seemed to think about it. And she pressed a little closer against him, smiling when the arm around her tightened for a second.
Marlie’s eyes wandered over to the tall, dark-dressed man. Uncle Severus. He seemed to be constantly smiling and she had hardly believed it when her dad had told her that that hadn’t always been the case. In his arms he held her Uncle Harry. His dark head rested against Uncle Sev’s shoulder and he was stroking the arms that were wrapped around him, with a fingertip. Granddad Lucius had returned and was now trying to convince his son Cedric that yes, he was tired and no, just because he was two years older than Abby it did *not* mean that he could be up as long as all the adults.
But overall she could feel the love her family had for each other. Could see it in all the little gestures, and she knew that her brother was right. She leaned back a little until she could feel Scorpius’ chest against her back and she could feel his silken, white-blondee hair on her cheek. She reached up and played with one strand.
“You’re right, Scor,” she finally said quietly while the big grandfather-clock struck midnight and the long awaited owl came flying in through the window her father had opened. “We’re lucky.”