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Things Everyone -- but Harry, evidently -- in the Wizarding World Knows

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"Potter, you imbecile," the voice rasped. "Get over here!"

Harry Potter looked at the tall figure standing in the shadowed alcove between buildings. Deep down, he wasn't surprised.

"Now!" It was a command.

Harry looked at the crowd that was starting to mutter in Knockturn Alley. It wasn't even mid- morning but there were enough shoppers and on-lookers that Harry's hope for a discrete visit to several shops was already beyond salvation.

"Potter!" It was a growl this time.

Harry turned his back on the whispers growing in the street. He knew it was only a matter of time before some poor fool would yell something foul at him, which would encourage another fool to try to hex him. He shook his head briefly, knowing it would happen before he could leave.

A thin arm, surprisingly muscular in spite of the thinness, reached out and went around his waist. "Hang on."

Harry reached a hand out reflexively, as a hex sped toward them. He waved his wandless hand to raise enough of a shield to stop almost any curse that a stranger would risk throwing in public.... Well, at least risk throwing in broad daylight where one could be more easily identified.

The curse bounced off the shield, back toward the crowd as Harry was Turned in the Side-Along Apparition. A couple of people had to move quickly to get out of the way of the reflected curse, Harry saw as they Disapparated.

With one arm about his waist, the other hand reached Harry's shoulder to steady him as they arrived at their destination.

"Still having problems with your landings, Mr. Potter?" Severus Snape asked.

"Yeah," Harry admitted. "Something about Apparating bothers my inner ear and I'm always off balance. Floo is really worse, with all the spinning." He shrugged. "It doesn't bother me when I fly, so it has to be something about the travel itself."

"You shouldn't admit that sort of thing to anyone," Snape said. "It reveals a weakness to your enemy."

Harry sighed. "They aren't my enemy!"

"And if that was an admiring crowd," Snape sneered, "I'd hate to see one that really disliked you."

Harry held up his hands in defeat. "Sorry! Just..." He took a deep breath. "Thank you. You didn't have to do that."

"Well, it won't do my already poor reputation any good," Snape admitted. "But I'll live."

"How do you live?" Harry asked. "I mean, I've been... busy..." He trailed off and shuffled his feet, not knowing what to do next.

"Is that what they call it?" Snape asked. "Busy?" Snape snorted. "Somehow, you've become the next Dark Lord, the bane of the Ministry, the cause of every problem Wizarding England has ever seen and the darling of Witch's Weekly."

"And that's just this week!" Harry grinned. "Last week I single handedly caused the price of fruit to rise, spread some nasty virus among school children and killed a nest of wild kneazels in a park."

Snape sniffed. "Wild kneazels should be eradicated," he agreed solemnly. "I thought the recent spate of rainy weather was also your fault!"

"See!" Harry threw up his hands in frustration. "Everything is my fault, somehow!"

Harry saw Snape hesitate for just a heartbeat before offering, "Tea?"

Harry stuttered. "Excuse me... what?"

Snape sighed. "Don't know why, but I'm offering tea. Would you like some?"

"If you're sure..." Harry hesitated.

"If I wasn't sure, I would not have offered," Snape said stiffly.

"Sorry, just... not used to it," Harry admitted. "Yes, please, I'd love a cuppa."

"In the kitchen, then," Snape turned and led the way. "Have a seat while I organize things."

Harry looked around the kitchen that wouldn't be out of place in Little Whinging. "This place is yours?"

"No, I murdered the Muggles, buried their bodies in the back yard and moved in," Snape shot back. "Yes, it's mine. Is that such a surprise?"

"Well... it's nice!" Harry admitted in a rush. He felt himself blush. "It's not what I would have expected."

Snape turned to look at Harry. "And you expected something dank and dark like that horror on Grimmauld Place?"

Harry shrugged. "Okay, I don't know what I expected," he said. "But... well, Aunt Marge would have loved this kitchen!" He looked around a moment. "I think your appliances are nicer than hers."

"Precisely because it is unexpected is why I chose it," Snape unbent to explain. "The basement suits as a Potions lab and after years of living in a dungeon, it's nice to see some more regular daylight."

"It's brilliant!" Harry enthused. "I don't have anything half as nice."

"If you have a home to go to, why did you not do that earlier?" Snape asked as he put tea things on the table.

Harry took a biscuit and nibbled on it for a moment. "You're pretty much the first person that isn't a Weasley who's spoken normally to me in... forever," he said softly. "And it's too... dangerous for me to spend too much time with them, or people will start to blame them for things, too."

"So you've cut yourself off from your friends, holed yourself up in some bed sitter and you spend your days moping?" Snape put two cups of tea on the table.

"Umm... yeah?" Harry answered with a grimace.

"You are an imbecile," Snape said, sighing. "Drink your tea before it gets cold."

Harry warmed his hands on the mug. The heat felt good, almost as good as the general disdain that Snape was treating him with. He didn't know how much he had missed being treated like this until now. Even Ron and Hermione handled him with kid gloves, trying too hard not to upset him about anything.

"When you're not taking over the Wizarding World," Snape asked, "what do you do?"

Harry gave a small grin and a shrug. "There isn't much to do," he admitted. "I didn't get to finish at Hogwarts, so I have an incomplete education. The Ministry won't let me sit for any exams. I really don't have any marketable skills, although I don't really need to work, even if the Goblins are pricks when I try to get any money out of my vaults."

"My understanding is that the Goblins really don't like anyone," Snape commented.

"Breaking into and out of their high-security vaults puts me in a category of my own, I suspect," Harry explained. At Snape's questioning look, he waved a hand. "Very long story," he said. "The only reason I can get to any of my money is that I've returned a number of Goblin treasures to them. Oh, yeah, I suggested that they could... search Bellatrix's vault for anything that might not belong to her."

Snape snorted. "And as the current heir of the Black family fortune, you are allowed to have them search for illegal or stolen items, anyways," he said.

Harry shrugged. "It worked," he said. "They've found a number of items of... questionable provenance that they have confiscated for themselves. There are a couple other Black vaults that I can live off of, to say nothing of what's in the Potter vault."

Harry watched as Snape sat back and considered.

"What were you doing in Knockturn Alley?" Snape asked.

Harry bit his lower lip, "Don't laugh but I was looking to buy some potion ingredients."

Snape snorted, disbelievingly.

"Yeah, I know," Harry agreed. "But... well, I've taken the time to find some very elementary potions books. I needed to learn the sorts of things that other students seemed to already know. It also offered me a chance to really study how a potion is made, without anyone looking over my shoulder."

"Shockingly, that makes sense," Snape drawled.

Harry grinned. "George Weasley helped me get a starter kit," he said. "The sort of things Wizard children get when they are six or seven. It had some clear directions for some simple potions and I just worked from there."

"What were you looking for on Knockturn Alley?" Snape circled back to his original question.

"Fresh wormwood," Harry said. "I was working on a Sleeping Draught and wanted some fresher material than I could get by owl order."

"You do realize that fresh and wormwood are contradictory," Snape said.

Harry shrugged. "I just know that I didn't like what I got when I ordered it and I was hoping for something I could look at before I bought it," he explained.

"Who are you and what did you do with Harry Potter?" Snape asked.

Harry laughed. It felt good. He hadn't had anything to laugh about in a long time.

"I may have some," Snape allowed. "Come with me."

Snape led the way to the basement, the stairs placed in a logical location in the back of the house. The Potions laboratory in the basement was clean, airy in a not-too-bright way and well lit.

"This is nice," Harry had to admit.

"Thank you for your approval," Snape shot back.

"Just stating a fact," Harry replied with a small grin.

Snape ignored him and moved toward what Harry observed was a storage space. There were shelves with various containers – boxes, jars, vials, kegs and metal containers filled the shelves. Snape obviously knew what was where and reached into a jar for a chunk of wormwood.

Snape considered the wormwood he held for a moment and, without looking up, asked, "And why are you brewing a Sleeping Draught?"

Harry had been afraid of this. But he had come this far...

"I've been having... nightmares," he admitted softly. "Not every night, thank Merlin, but two or three times a week. I was hoping that if I had something on hand that I wouldn't be spending those nights wide awake after I woke."

"How long has this been going on?" Snape persisted.

"Since... forever," Harry had to admit.

To Harry's dismay, Snape dropped the wood back into the jar and closed the lid. He turned to Harry and moved closer.

"Brewing a Sleeping Draught is not for an amateur," Snape said firmly.

"George's been helping me," Harry protested. "He has a lab in the back of the shop I've been using..."

"Nevertheless," Snape interrupted. "If you are going to brew something like that, you need more than the casual supervision Mr. Weasley will be able to provide."

"It's not dangerous!" Harry wanted to wail. He was so close...

"You will come here and brew under my supervision," Snape swept on as if Harry had not interrupted.

"I... What?" Harry babbled, confused.

"You will learn how to brew a Sleeping Draught properly and you will do it under my supervision," Snape moved closer.

"I... don't know what to say," Harry was confused.

"You have not heard the rest," Snape warned him.

"Whatever you want," Harry promised.

"You always were rash," Snape said softly. He moved closer to Harry. "What if I want... you?"

Harry was stunned. "Yes," his mouth said before his brain understood the question. "I mean..."

Snape waved a hand with a small grin. "We can work out the details later," he said. "You can move in here and learn how to do Potions properly."

"I..." Harry swallowed. "Thank you."

"You may regret this," Snape warned.

"I... I suspect not," Harry said slowly. Something about this felt like the right thing to do.

"Gather your things and you can move in tomorrow," Snape directed.

"Yes, sir," Harry replied automatically.

Snape rolled his eyes. "Now you get it right!" he said. But with a gleam in his eye that let Harry know it was the right answer. "Be here at 10 am tomorrow, precisely, or I will rescind my offer."

"10 am," Harry nodded.

"I have things to do yet today," Snape said briskly. "I'm throwing you out until tomorrow."

"No problem!" Harry said cheerfully. "Do you want me to bring anything?"

"Just your personal belonging," Snape directed. "I'll have everything else or we can get it."

Snape walked up the stairs and Harry followed.

"Thank you for tea," Harry remembered to say. "If you need anything before tomorrow, just let me know."

"A moment," Snape said. He took out his wand and said to Harry, "Hold out your hand."

Curious, Harry did so. Snape tapped the palm of his hand lightly and a small flash of blue told Harry that Snape had cast some spell. He could feel the spell settling on him, it was something to do with Snape.

"That will let you through the ward," Snape said. "You can practice your Apparition and see if you can land on your feet and not on your arse."

Harry laughed again. "I'll try!" He sobered but couldn't take the smile off his face. "Until tomorrow!"

"Tomorrow," Snape replied.

Harry Turned and went to his home.

He looked about. It really was a terrible living space. One room, relatively dingy at that and nothing special to speak of – although it was better than the cupboard under the stairs and bigger than the room he had at the Dursley's. Still, he'd be glad to move out of here.

In the middle of packing, Harry thought to send a note to George about his change of residence for at least the immediate future. Although... maybe he'd not tell George he was going to be living with Severus Snape just as yet. He'd see how that worked out.

Harry tossed all his belongings into his trunk. He'd shrink that at the last minute, once he was sure he had everything. Not that he had a lot, he mostly had his belonging from Hogwarts, some odds and ends he had gotten from the Weasleys and some casual clothes he had bought recently. He had stuff at Grimmauld place but, as Severus had said, it was a horror of a house and Harry couldn't stay there alone. Even with Kreacher's reformed attitude, there were too many memories that he didn't want to face.

Additionally, since the house was no longer under Fidelus, between Dumbledore's death and the Ministry official that had followed them to the house when they had been searching for Horcruxes, everyone seemed to want to see the house and the crowds outside made it impossible to live there for any length of time. Harry had set some wards up and left Kreacher to keep everyone out.

Using his miniscule bathroom – Harry was convinced it had been a closet at one point – Harry looked down at his cock, which was now showing more interest in anything than it had in a long time.

"Now you're interested?" he said wryly.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

"This isn't working," Ginny said softly. They were sitting in the orchard behind the Burrow. It was a sunny day and the breeze was pleasant.

She placed a hand high on Harry's thigh, near enough to his cock to indicate that she knew he wasn't getting hard.

Harry blushed. "I... I really do like you," he stuttered. "But... just not that way." He kissed her gently. "I'm sorry." He really was.

She kissed him back. "I'm sorry, too," she said. Taking her hand away and standing up, she brushed herself off. Not facing Harry she said, "I... need to go. I do hope we can be friends some day, just not right now."

"I'd like that, too," Harry said gently.

He watched Ginny walk back to the house. He felt somewhat sad -- but not as sad as he thought he would be -- that they had just broken up. There was a little thread of guilty relief, one that told him that maybe it wasn't just Ginny... girls, or rather... women in general didn't seem to do it for him.

Harry gave Ginny some time to do whatever she needed to do before he went back to the house. He was leaving tomorrow, anyway, so hopefully it wouldn't be too awkward for too long.

"Lunch is almost ready," Molly Weasley called as Harry came in. "If you wash up quick, you can get to the sandwiches before Ron does."

Harry laughed. He washed up and came back to the kitchen.

"Harry?" Molly called softly. Harry had heard Ginny come and go while he was in the loo. He braced himself.

He was totally surprised when Molly swept him up in a hug. She held him by his shoulders, looked him in the eye and said, "I'm sorry about you and Ginny, but don't let that keep you away from here. I wondered a long time ago if you two were really right for each other but you both needed to figure that out for yourselves. But you're still one of us."

Harry was stunned. Not that he had expected to ever be thrown out but this level of acceptance was foreign to him.

Molly hugged him again, then pushed him toward the table. "Eat while you can..."

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

That had been the last time Harry had been touched without some malevolent intent behind the touch. Before his ability to shield himself had become public knowledge, people on the street would randomly strike at him, attempting heaven only knows what.

The one time the Aurors had stepped in, they had taken Harry and his attackers all in, putatively to straighten this mess out. But even the Aurors had -- 'so sorry' -- knocked Harry into a wall or banged a chair into his knees before Kingsley Shacklebolt had appeared and the harassment had stopped.

Until today. Snape's strong arm about his waist and hand on his shoulder had not been anything more than perfunctory. But it had been a human touch to soothe his touch-starved soul.

He gave his now fully interested cock a wry look. He could take care of that in the shower.

Harry was up early the next day, having one of his nightmare-free nights. He made himself breakfast and read the Prophet leisurely. He had given the delivery owl a treat, and told it that he was leaving for a bit and didn't want to paper anymore. It gave a small Hoot of understanding before it flew off. He washed the dish and cup and placed them back in the cupboard. He went and got his trunk from his bedroom.

He binned any of the food that would spoil and left a note for the landlord that he'd be gone for a while. Since the rent was paid up for the next three months, Harry figured that would give him time to see if this thing with Snape would work out or not.

Looking about to make sure there was nothing he forgot -- there never was, but it didn't hurt to check, Harry Turned in place... He kept his stumble to a minimum as he landed.

"You can leave your things upstairs," Severus said without looking up. "My room is the one to the left. There are two other rooms on the right."

Harry went up the stairs and looked into the two rooms on the right. One was a guest bedroom -- the thought of Snape and guests seemed incongruent -- and while the second had a couch that could be slept on, it was essentially an office.

Harry pushed the door to Severus' room open. It was larger than the other two rooms and, reaching his senses out, was enlarged by Wizarding Space. There was a wardrobe on one wall and Harry placed his trunk next to it.

Another door led to a bathroom that would have done Hogwarts proud, complete with an oversized tub and a separate shower.

Harry went back downstairs.

"Did you have breakfast?" Severus asked.

"I did, thank you," Harry wondered where this polite conversation was going.

"Then we will start on dinner," Severus said. He went into the kitchen and Harry followed, mystified.

"Mince the onion, shred the carrots, chop the green pepper," Severus directed. "One cup of each."

Harry stared at the innocent vegetables on the counter.

"Dinner isn't going to make itself," Severus snapped.

Harry moved to the counter, saw a selection of knives and a cutting board. He looked over each of the knives and took a short bladed knife to use.

"Stop!" Severus commanded. "Explain. Why that knife?"

Harry looked at the silver knife in his hand. "Unless there's a need for a larger blade, I have better control over the shorter blade. The smaller handle also fits well into my hand." He held out his hand with the knife to demonstrate.

"Adequate," Severus allowed. "Not at this moment, but you will need to work with the larger blades to become more adept at using them."

"All right," Harry said. "What are we making?"

"Goulash, actually," Severus explained.

Harry said, "Sounds good." He set about organizing his work, getting a measuring cup and setting up a block to work on. He tried not to think about Severus looking over his shoulder... wait? Severus? When did that happen?

"Potter!" Severus snapped.

Harry looked down at the onion that he had mangled. "Sorry, got distracted."

"And getting distracted can get you killed in the process," Severus sighed.

Harry took a deep breath. "Sorry. It shouldn't happen again," he said.

"Okay, go back to the beginning," he placed a new onion in front of Harry.

Harry focused on what he was doing... mince the onion. He soon was lost in the process, forgetting that Severus was watching.

"Adequate," Severus allowed. "Now, let's see you make up dinner."

"You just wanted a house elf!" Harry grumbled, good naturedly.

Severus wandered out of the room as Harry worked. It wasn't all that different from what he had cooked at the Dursley's. Not that Aunt Petunia would allow anything as pedestrian as goulash to be served, but he had made up similar dishes so he certainly could manage now.

He poked through the cupboards for ingredients and spices, taking note of where things were as he went along.

He set the pot to simmer on the stove and went in search of... Severus. Severus? Really? He suspected he shouldn't say that aloud.

He found Severus in the living room, reading the same edition of the Prophet Harry had read already.

"It'll be ready in about an hour, if you want it for a late lunch," Harry said. "Or I'll put it in a casserole and we can heat it up when we're ready for dinner."

"Lunch will be fine," Severus agreed. "That will give us some time to start work in the lab." He got up and they went down to the basement together.

"I have several experiments at various stages," Severus pointed to the long bench along one wall. "I'll ask you to not come down here by yourself until I'm more comfortable with what you can do."

"That's reasonable," Harry agreed.

Severus then set Harry through reviewing most of what he had learned over the past year. He questioned Harry about ingredients, how to prepare them, general techniques and some theoretical questions that Harry was forced to answer "I don't know" to.

It was a long hour later when Harry reminded Severus, "I need to at least stir the goulash or turn off the heat."

"Good time for a break," Severus allowed.

They went back to the kitchen, Harry got dishes out of the cupboard and set the table. Severus fussed with tea and everything got on the table about the same time.

Obviously taking a tentative mouthful of the goulash, Severus admitted, "Good!" He glanced at Harry. "You could probably work in a Muggle restaurant, if you were desperate."

Harry felt a warm pride at the unexpected praise. "Thank you."

They ate in silence, Harry enjoying the company while he ate.

"I'd like you to brew something you're comfortable doing," Severus said when they were done. "I don't care how simple it is, just something that you know you can do well."

Harry considered. "There's a minor pain paste that I've not had much chance to use, but it's seemed effective when I've brewed it," he said. "George used it on a bruise he had and it worked."

"That's fine," Severus agreed. "And walk me through what you are doing."

They went back to the lab and Harry worked to focus his thoughts on the work, not the dark man watching his every move. The pain paste only called for a half a dozen ingredients and required only minor brewing, mostly to melt the ingredients together. But Harry took his time, explained what he was doing and worked through it.

A couple hours later, it was done. He handed Severus the small pot. "That's it," Harry said. "It can be made in larger batches, but it loses potency after about a week so it's not usually worth making too much at one time."

Severus took the pot and looked the paste over carefully. He rubbed a small bit between two fingers, smelling the paste as he did so.

"This is nicely done," Severus said softly.

Harry blushed. "Thank you."

"I am sometimes sorry for the role I had to play," Severus said.

"It's over and not something that you need to apologize for," Harry replied just as softly.

"Nevertheless," Severus said. "You were a more than adequate student and while you may never be a Master, I think you can learn a lot about Potions."

"That would be brilliant!" Harry enthused.

"Okay, let me put together some materials and set you some work to do for the next few days," Severus said. "Since you didn't finish Hogwarts, there probably are any number of things you don't know."

"Oh, there are a lot of things I don't know," Harry agreed.

Severus took him back upstairs and through the living room to a library Harry hadn't seen before. He immediately knew it was more Wizarding space, and it was loaded from floor to ceiling with books. Severus took down a handful of books and handed them to Harry.

"You can start with these," he said.

Harry looked at the books in his hands. Charms, potions, runes... "I've not done any work with runes," he admitted. "That was more Hermione's thing."

"You need at least a rudimentary knowledge," Severus didn't back down. "That will get you started."

"Okay," Harry had to agree.

"We'll spend the morning in the lab, doing practical work," Severus outlined. "That will also let me work on my projects."

Harry nodded.

"The afternoons, I'd like you to work your way through those books," Severus continued. "There is parchment and ink in the office, if you'd like."

"Do you mind if I just use a pen and paper?" Harry hazarded. "It really is easier."

Severus sighed. "If you must. But no writing in the books."

"Okay, that's reasonable," Harry said.

Harry took a break before dinner time, wandering out to the yard. He looked at the garden that Severus had growing next to the house – a combination of vegetables and potion ingredients. There was a shed in the back corner that held gardening implements and a lawn mower. The mower must have come with the house, it was dusty and obviously unused.

Knowing he'd need to do something physical, Harry looked over the mower, seeing that it was not too different from the mower he had used before.

Inside, Severus was organizing dinner. "Sandwiches and soup," he announced.

"Better than what I'd have on my own," Harry replied, washing up before sitting down.

Eating supper, Harry offered, "I can take care of the lawn, if you want."

Severus raised an eyebrow in surprise. "There are charms for that."

Harry shrugged. "Not hard," he said. "And only fair that I help out around here."

"You'll earn your keep," Severus replied smugly. "Do not worry about that."

"Okay, just thought I'd offer," Harry said.

After supper, Harry read more of the books Severus had picked out for him. He'd wait a few days before he mentioned the idea of getting a telly. He had become addicted to a couple of programmes while he had been living on his own and thought it would be interesting to see what sorts of things Severus liked.

Yawning, Harry said, "I'm calling it a night."

"Go ahead," Severus said. "I'll be up in a bit."

Surprised that Severus wasn't going to... take advantage of the situation right away, Harry wandered upstairs. He made use of the huge shower and decided that a t-shirt and shorts would have to be suitable sleeping garb. He climbed into bed and nodded off.

"Potter!" Severus roared. "What are you doing?"

"Sleeping," Harry mumbled.

"And why are you sleeping in my bed?" Severus demanded.

Harry looked up at the... flustered man looming over him. "I thought..." Harry blushed.

To Harry's amazement, Severus blushed also. "I didn't mean that you were required to..." Severus waved a hand at the bed.

"Umm... and if I don't mind?" Harry said softly.

Silence.

Harry sighed. "And I'm just tired of being alone," he all but whispered. With an effort, he said, "I'll move to the other bedroom."

That seemed to take the wind out of Severus. "No... wait. Perhaps we should... talk about this."

"Can we do it in the morning?" Harry asked. "I'd like to get a good night sleep and I'm hoping that maybe if I'm not alone that I'll sleep better."

"Used to having another body in your bed?" Severus snapped.

"No," Harry said patiently. "Just after living in the dorm at Hogwarts and then on the run with Ron and Hermione in a tent that sleeping in a room by myself feels... odd."

He could see Severus consider.

"It's a big enough bed," Harry said. "You'll hardly know I'm here."

"Oh, all right," Severus capitulated. "Stay on that side and we'll talk about it in the morning."

Harry felt better than he had in a very long time. He was warm, comfortable and had slept soundly through the night. He didn't want to move.

"Potter, you better move. Now!" Severus rumbled in his ear.

Harry opened his eyes to see that he had wrapped himself about Severus at some point during the night.

In for a pound... "Don't wanna," he grumbled sleepily. "Comfy."

Harry found himself on his back, pinned down by a grinning Severus. "I am not comfy," Severus said patiently.

The same mad impulse made Harry lean up and kiss Severus.

Severus' eyes got big for a moment and then calculating. "So that's the way it is?" he growled. Severus lowered himself on Harry and sealed their lips together.

Without considering, Harry Banished their clothes. Skin-on-skin felt even better. Harry shifted a bit... there... now their cocks lined up, rubbing together. Harry groaned.

"Oh, you don't get off that easily," Severus said, casting a spell on Harry that had his insides feeling empty.

"Oh, that's brilliant!" Harry said against Severus' lips.

"No one ever did that for you?" Severus demanded.

"No," Harry said, grinding against Severus. "Keep going."

Severus paused for a moment and looked carefully at Harry. "How much experience have you had?" he asked.

Harry blushed and waffled with, "Enough but, not in a while."

"Then you need to tell me if something doesn't feel right," Severus ordered. When Harry didn't answer, Severus added, "Or this stops now."

"Yes, I promise to tell you," Harry panted. "Just... don't stop."

Severus grinned, a tad feral Harry thought but he didn't move away from Harry. He paused and obviously cast another non-verbal spell since Harry's rear end felt... squishy. Severus placed one hand between Harry's legs and rubbed the area behind his balls.

Harry whined. "You stop now and I'll... I'll..." Severus shut him up by kissing him again. He was taller than Harry so that he could play with Harry's balls and kiss at the same time. When Severus breached him with a finger it felt odd at first but he found something that had Harry seeing stars.

"Do that again!" Harry demanded.

Severus moved about and Harry didn't know what Severus was doing but knew he'd explode if something didn't happen soon.

"Relax for me," Severus commanded, taking his hand away from Harry's hole.

Harry took a couple of breaths and nodded at Severus. He wrapped one leg around Severus' waist and said, "Go ahead."

Oh. Damn that... hurt? Well, it did. And it didn't. Harry didn't know what to think. Severus paused and asked, "Okay?"

"Ummm.... Yeah?" Harry replied.

Severus moved slightly and he must have moved against that place. "Okay! Yes, fine!" Harry said.

Severus moved more and then felt Severus' hips against his.

"Oh, full... full..." Harry muttered. "Move..."

"If you're ready," Severus said.

"Yes, yes," Harry agreed, using his leg wrapped around Severus to emphasize his point.

Severus withdrew and pushed in again. It took a couple of times to adjust but he was soon making Harry see stars with every push. It wasn't too long before Harry felt his balls draw up at the same time Severus' hips started to stutter.

Then Harry was coming like he had never come before. Just before he passed out, he saw a bright glow about both of them.

Harry woke again slowly. He was nestled against Severus' side, and Severus' arm was holding him firmly in place. He moved and winced a bit.

"Harry," Severus said with an odd tone in his voice. "Were you a virgin?"

Harry felt himself blush, "Umm... yes?"

Severus sighed. "You were or you weren't."

"Well, Ginny and I fooled around some but, well, I never could get it up for her," he admitted. "And, well, with chasing Voldemort all over Britain, never had a chance then. So, yes."

"Harry, you imbecile," Severus groaned.

"What?" Harry was puzzled.

Severus looked down at him. "Not even Weasley talked about sex with you?"

"Ron? And sex? Yucchhh," Harry replied. "Well, he and Hermione and, no, I'm not going to even think about that."

"I need clothes for this," Severus announced. "And tea."

"Breakfast!" Harry chirped. He looked at the daylight streaming into the room. "What time is it?"

"Almost 10 am," Severus replied. "Get up and dressed."

Harry let himself actually look at Snape. Thin but well shaped, Snape unfortunately – in Harry's opinion – put on a dressing robe. "Get cleaned up," Snape ordered. "I'll start tea."

"Okay, okay," Harry said, swinging out of the bed. He rummaged in his trunk for clean clothes. Walking to the bathroom, Harry felt a small ache in his arse, but otherwise felt better than he ever remembered.

Severus must have set a cleaning spell on him at some point since he wasn't sticky or anything. He took a quick shower and dressed, hungry for breakfast.

Severus had tea steeping and toast made. "Eat," Severus directed.

Harry spread jam on his toast and ate under Severus' watchful eye. Harry ate three pieces of toast while Severus nibbled on one.

"Now what?" Harry asked.

"This is... awkward," Severus started.

"It usually is," Harry agreed.

"More than you think," Severus replied. "Most Wizarding children learn this from their parents. At Hogwarts, an effort is made to determine which students may not know about... sex... and the Head of House is supposed to reach out to see which students may need more... information."

"Professor McGonagall was supposed to talk to me about sex?" Harry asked, horrified. "Umm... no!"

Severus gave a small grin. "If we determined that a student was... unaware, they were to be directed to someone who could give them the information they needed. In your case, you might have been sent to Professor Flitwick or possibly to Madame Pomfrey."

"Still yucchy," Harry groaned. "But, better, I guess."

"Evidently, with all your misadventures, you fell through the cracks," Severus went on. "I would have thought Mr. Weasley... or one of the twins would have talked to you at some point, knowing that your aunt and uncle would be in no position to tell you anything."

"Tell me what?" Harry demanded.

"If a wizard, or witch for that matter, does not lose his or her virginity before they reach adulthood, then there need to be special precautions taken so that when a person loses their virginity that they do not bond with the person they are having sex with," Severus said grimly.

Oh.

"And... we didn't take these special precautions," Harry said slowly.

"No," Severus agreed.

Silence. Harry considered.

"What kind of bond?" Harry asked.

"A connection between the participants," Severus answered. "It doesn't prevent other relationships but the connection is... permanent. And other relationships are usually... awkward."

"So, you and me..." Harry started.

"You and I are now bonded," Severus finished.

"Huh," Harry said. He took a drink of tea. "Is there anything left in the pot?"

"Potter." Severus growled.

Harry put the cup down. He ran a finger around the rim. "Well, the way I look at it, it's not a big deal," he said. "I mean, it's not what I would call perfect but, well, you're one of the few people who would even talk to me, much less put up with me. You're sexy, good in bed and I think I can learn a lot from you."

"I don't want to be your teacher for the rest of my life," Severus barked.

"No, no," Harry soothed. "Sorry. But I think we can learn a lot from each other," Harry elaborated. "I really do want to learn more about Potions. I can teach you about... Muggle things like mowing lawns and watching the telly."

"And what makes you think I want to learn about mowing lawns?" Severus asked.

"And what makes you think I want to learn about Ancient Runes?" Harry shot back. "We may learn to like something, we may not. But unless we try, we'll never know."

Severus sat back in his chair.

"And I'm a good catch," Harry added with a grin. "Being rich and all."

"There is that," Severus agreed, ruefully.

Harry stood and moved closer to Severus. "There will be days we'll probably still hate one another. But, well, the sex was brilliant and I'd be interested in giving it a try."

"You were... inspiring..." Severus admitted.

He wrapped an arm about Severus and leaned in for a kiss. "And think of what we can do once we have a chance to practice," Harry teased.