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Darling, Don’t Think Twice

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*

“I’m not going to fuck you.”

Harry wipes his hands on the rag in front of him, carefully rubbing away the grease and motor-oil from between his fingers. He looks across at his godson.

“So, unless you’ve managed to buy a bike and break it within the last twenty four hours,” Harry tosses the rag carelessly onto the table, “I cannot think of a single reason why you should be here at this time of night.” Harry leans against the workbench, palms against the heavy wood. He raises his eyebrows. Teddy stares back.

“Just a friendly visit.” Teddy steps closer, hands in his pockets, looking casual even though it’s well past ten, well past the garage’s closing time. He’s been doing this for nearly three months now, playing ’Don’t Stand So Close To Me’ with Harry, pushing forwards two steps for every one step Harry takes back. “Just checking on my favourite godfather,” Teddy says evenly, his smile sweet and his eyes intense, and Harry wants to snort at the lie.

“Oh, I’m your favourite now, am I?” He sniffs, wiping at the stubble on his jaw. “I thought I was ‘that prick who fucked off rather than hang around and raise me’.” His expression hardens at the mirth he sees in Teddy's eyes. “Or did someone else call me that last night at the Burrow?”

Harry doesn’t add ‘and then you tried to shove your hand down my trousers while whispering that I could fuck you if I wanted to’, but from the look in Teddy’s eyes, he knows Harry’s thinking about it. It’s not the first time Teddy’s done that, slid his hand up Harry’s thigh under the cover of Molly and Arthur’s thick tablecloths, and Harry is certain it won’t be the last. He hasn’t been able to get the feel of it out of his head for months now.

Harry knows it’s childish to toss barbs around like this, but it’s Saturday, and it’s late, and he barely got a wink after he left the Burrow the night before. Not just because Teddy’s words hit far too close to home ― Harry had been out of the country for the past four years ― but because of the feeling of Teddy’s fingers around the hem of his trousers, touching the skin just below his navel ― of the grind of the bones in Teddy’s wrist as Harry grabbed his hand and pushed it away.

He’d wanked to the memory of it until he’d come so hard he’d seen stars.

Across from Harry, Teddy outright grins.

“You can be my favourite and a prick.” He walks towards Harry, boots scuffing on the concrete of the garage floor, and Harry fights the urge to step back. There’s a workbench in front of them, as good a shield as he’s going to get from his godson, from Teddy’s determination to get what he wants from Harry ― worst of all, from Harry’s desire to give in to it.

He’s at the end of his tether, was at the end of it long before Teddy walked in the door of his garage. He fits in far too well here, with the grease and dismantled bikes Harry’s working on. Harry’s jaw tightens. Teddy’s wearing a black t-shirt, symbols Harry doesn’t understand printed on the front, and those bloody jeans again, the ones with a rip in the knee, and another on the back of Teddy’s thigh, just under his left arse-cheek. Harry knows because he’s looked, looked at the curve of the kid’s arse, the shape of his thighs ― worst of all, Teddy knows he’s looked.

Harry doesn't know how Teddy figured it out so quickly. He’d barely noticed he’d been doing it himself before Teddy was raising his brows at him, smirking and standing just a little too close, and then far too close all together.

Fourteen, is how old Teddy was when Harry left England, when his relationship with Ginny stopped crumbling and finally completely fell apart. Harry wonders if they might have been able to work things out if they’d been able to have kids, but that’s neither here nor there. They never conceived, and in the end he’s grateful. He wouldn't want to put a kid through the mess he and Ginny put each other through, even though he doesn't regret it ― doesn’t regret leaving, doesn’t regret the career change from potential Head Auror to confirmed head mechanic of his own very small garage in New York. It was the right thing for him, for everyone, especially for Ginny and the gentle rekindling of her relationship with Dean. Their divorce wasn’t friendly; Ginny had a temper and Harry was slower to boil, but once he did then all hell would break loose. Towards the end of things, they were barely able to be in the same room as each other. Despite it all though, Harry had no desire to stand in the way of her starting something new with someone else, and nor did she him. He wanted to give them both the space to move on from what they were, the hurtful things they’d said and not really meant, and even moreso the ones they had meant. They still loved each other, underneath it all, but as Ron himself put it, “you need to step back and stop trying to passive aggressively bitch each other to death, yeah? You’re giving me an ulcer worrying about you both.

So, Harry left. It was the right thing to do, he knows that every time he kisses Ginny on the cheek now he’s back, knew it as soon as she started sending him postcards and then updates on her life while he was away. Best of all, he knew it when he didn’t feel jealous or sad, simply happy for her when she announced she and Dean were having a baby.

He does regret leaving Teddy, though.

He knew that when he left, when he didn’t visit often enough, when Teddy grew distant in their Floo calls. Fourteen is an important age, fifteen even bigger, sixteen a fucking mess, but Harry thought he’d be able to keep in touch with him from afar, keep the same presence in his life. By the time seventeen rolled by, though, Harry knew he’d messed it up. Without even realizing it, he’d become the same thing to Teddy as his own godfather was to him for so many years.

He was absent.

He came back for birthdays, a few Christmases, sure, but it wasn’t the same as being there for the kid. Harry’d had a hard enough time managing his own shit, trying to juggle his love and work life back in the states. When things had gone tits up with Alexander, as Harry had secretly always known they would, he knew it was time to go home. His escape from England, from his past and the tatters of his marriage, to have the freedom to finally explore his sexuality, had been good, but it was time to go home. Hermione had kept him updated with everything that was going on, and he’d had visitors as well. The message Harry got from them was loud and clear ― come back now, Harry. The only person who hadn’t said it had been Teddy, his sullen silences speaking volumes, albeit ones which Harry couldn't seem to read just yet. It was Hermione who finally drove the meaning home there.

“He’s saving face, Harry,” she’d said, explaining it almost kindly, her face growing even kinder as the confusion bloomed on Harry’s own. “He’s eighteen and he’s missed you and he desperately wants you around, believe me. He’s got a big heart, I think, but sometimes he’s not sure what to do with what he feels. You remember what that was like, don’t you?” She’d smiled almost wryly. “I know I remember it.”

Her words were comforting, sage as always, tinged with her humour and warmth, but Harry still didn’t know what to do about it.

Returning was easier than he’d expected; in some ways, it was like he’d never really unpacked in the states, never really settled. Setting up his own garage here hadn’t been hard either ― he had the money, the means, the contacts ― and six months in he had a few clients too. There weren't too many wizarding folk who had a car needing to be fixed, but there was just enough hobbyists to make it work, and Harry got by on the Muggle clients who came by. He didn’t do it for the money, really. He just liked fixing things ― taking something apart, figuring it out, and putting it back together again.

Hearing an engine purr after he’d righted what was wrong with it was one of the best things Harry’d ever come across.

He’d wanted more than anything to get Teddy to join him in the garage, for the two of them to be grease monkeys together, bonding over the popped hood of a car, or the Harley Harry was fixing up to make fly like Sirius's. He’d been excited at the prospect of the time they could spend together, and the lost time Harry could make up to Teddy as he taught him the different parts of an engine, how everything fit together. He’d left the bike behind when he’d run away to the states, but now the sturdy shape of it beckoned to him, and the prospect of fixing it with Teddy, the two of them working side by side and making it fly, felt more meaningful than Harry was able to admit. He’d always wanted that with Sirius, wanted his godfather to take him aside and teach him to ride. He’d wanted any kind of time he could get with Sirius, but there had been so little of it in the end.

He wanted that now, with Teddy. He wanted to be everything Sirius was to him, but better and more, and he thought now he was back they could have that. But if Harry’d thought that returning would be enough to mend the bridge between them, then he’d been wrong. Not that Teddy wanted to keep his distance ― he was more than keen to spend time with Harry ― but that itself was the issue, and a big one.

Teddy had changed to the point of being almost unrecognizable; Harry would have made a joke about morphing abilities there if it wouldn't have painfully exposed how out of touch he was with his godson. He wasn’t fourteen anymore, that was for sure, and while Harry had seen him last Christmas, he didn’t remember Teddy looking quite like that. Teddy was something of an awkward giraffe of a kid, and always had been, but it was different now. He’d gone from gangly to lithe, from skinny to slim but toned, from a kid to a young adult. He wore his hair short, that deep familiar turquoise ― or sometimes a faded pink that reminded Harry of Tonks and made his heart ache at the memory of her humour and charm ― above a knowing, lopsided smile that made Harry ache in an entirely different way. Teddy smiled a lot, hazel eyes creasing behind the fall of his ever changing hair as he played with Eleanor, Ginny’s three year old girl, or helped Bill and Fleur set the table at the Burrow.

Teddy was attractive, even though Harry tried not to notice, and really it might have been okay if it had stopped there. Harry was human, and a fit guy was a fit guy; there was fundamentally nothing wrong with registering that Teddy was good looking, and then going about his business. But at some point, and perhaps because Teddy was watching Harry a little too closely himself, Teddy had figured it out. And now, he wanted Harry to act on it.

At first, Harry had just thought the change in demeanour was Teddy thawing towards him, that his cool regard was turning into something warmer. After initially refusing Harry’s offer to help him in the garage, Teddy started arriving unannounced, and Harry started looking forward to these visits. Harry would lay out various car parts, next to the rags, the motor oil, a few magazines on bikes to get Teddy interested, on the off chance that Teddy might arrive. The sentimentality of it all stunned him, at times, his own desire to connect with Teddy an almost alarming thing.

Teddy was still unwilling to learn even the most basic of things about the garage, but Harry was okay with that. He was patient, he’d learned, after training up his own apprentices in the states, and a better teacher than he realised. When Teddy started showing an interest, Harry was more than delighted, his heart hammering in his chest as Teddy started asking questions and picking up spare parts, the grease smearing over his long fingers. Harry couldn't stop thinking that Teddy fit in so well here, in Harry’s garage, as he tried to ignore the flutters of interest inside him. This didn’t need to be sexual, he told himself; he wanted to be Teddy’s mentor, his friend, his godfather. It didn’t need to be sexual, he’d insisted, as Teddy flipped his hair away from his face, leaving a dark streak of grease across his pale forehead.

But then Teddy’s lips had twisted into a smirk, a flush creeping across his pale cheeks as he conversationally said, “You know, you can fuck me if you want to. And I know you do”, and Harry’s heart began to hammer in a different way.

Six times, now, Teddy has offered that. He’s outright asked seven. Harry was shocked into silence the first time, dumbfounded the second, heat flashing in his chest and groin at the idea of it, followed by shame and confusion. He doesn’t understand what Teddy is doing, why his hand keeps finding Harry’s knee and sliding up his thigh when they get together at the Burrow, why Teddy wants this.

He does know he’s running out of ways to say no.

In a way, it's not like Harry can really blame him. If he’d caught Sirius looking at his arse, he’d have had his hand down his godfather’s pants before Sirius could even blink. There were a few times Harry almost imagined he did catch Sirius looking, caught those grey eyes flicking away far too quickly, felt a hand linger just a fraction too long on his back before it too was withdrawn as quickly as it came. He could never quite be sure though if that really happened or if he just wanted it to have, but he’s thirty six years old now, and he still wanks over the memory of those touches, imagined or not. He has no idea how Sirius would have reacted, or if he himself would have ever had the nerve to ask, but it’s all academic anyway. The more pressing concern is how the hell does Harry react to Teddy’s very real, very tangible offers ― and his very real interest in them.

He shakes his head and looks up as he hears Teddy stop right before the work bench. They stand on either side of it, Teddy’s head cocked to one side, the neck of his t-shirt pulling away slightly and exposing the wing of his collarbone. His shoulders are slightly damp, a light film of rain settling over them and misting on his hair, and Harry almost smiles. He missed that about England, the way that even in the early days of summer rain would sometimes fall through the sunshine. It’s dark outside, but it’s not cold, and the light catches on the smattering of tiny droplets on Teddy’s turquoise hair.

Harry grits his teeth.

“Go home, Teddy,” Harry says gruffly, gruffer even than he’d intended.

“But I just got here.” Teddy prods at a spanner with two fingers, spins it back and forth, then around in a circle. It grinds against the workbench, the sound grating on Harry’s nerves, and he shoots a hand out, slaps it against the tool. It rattles to a jarring halt. His hand is millimetres from Teddy’s fingers, his thumb almost touching the bump of his knuckle.

Harry takes a deep breath, steels himself to tell Teddy to go, when Teddy interrupts him.

“Do you want to fuck me, Harry?” he asks softly, his eyes just that fraction wider and shining with something that almost looks sincere. Harry falters. That’s different, not what Teddy usually says. He’s changed the script, but no matter. Harry knows his lines all the same.

“I’m not going to fuck you,” he repeats firmly. “So go home,” he grinds out, a headache budding at the back of his eyes and his cock stirring at the scent of Teddy’s cologne, the shape of his lips. They’re full, almost an odd shape, and Harry wants to crush his mouth against them. He purses his lips tightly instead.

Teddy takes a step back, and Harry feels like he can breathe again, relief running through him ― but it doesn’t last long. Teddy is smiling again, elated and wolf-like, grinning like he’s just won a point, and Harry doesn’t trust that. He gets a sudden flash of Remus. That’s the smile he saw every now and again, so full of mischief, a memory of the boy who’d once raised hell at Hogwarts with Harry’s father, before it would slip away as quickly as it came. Teddy doesn’t look like his parents, not really, not the way Harry inherited physical traits from his. But there’s something there, in his eyes, in his mannerisms, in the tilt of his lips. Harry wonders if Teddy has been looking at photos of his parents, has styled himself on the way he saw them move, but it seems deeper than that. Harry doesn't think this is something Teddy could have learned; he’s Remus and Tonks’ boy, through and through, and Harry’s never wanted someone more than he wants this kid.

He needs to get Teddy out of here.

"I'm not going to fuck you," he repeats.

“That’s not what I just asked.” Teddy licks his lips, tucks his hands into his jacket pockets. “But it does answer a different question.”

He rocks on his heels for one moment, expression elated, almost triumphant. There’s something even sweeter, genuine, underneath it, but it’s gone as quickly as it comes. Teddy turns to leave, and Harry resists the urge to groan. Teddy’s right. I’m not going to is not the same as I don’t want to; Harry’s just admitted far more than he meant to, and the happiness he saw on Teddy’s face is as confusing as anything. This is a game to Teddy, surely that’s all it is, a way to get under Harry’s skin.

Surely that’s all this is.

Fucking hell, Harry thinks, then thinks it again as he slumps back into his work chair, the rip in Teddy’s jeans flashing a broad stripe of tanned skin as he strolls from the garage and out into the night.

Fucking hell.

*

The club is loud and the music harsh, and Harry’s pulse thumps in time with it as he watches the men moving on the dance floor ahead of him. The glass is cold in his palm, the night thrumming with heat and energy. It reminds him of his other life in New York, the life he almost misses, and he takes a deep swig of his beer, sets the empty glass on the high table near him, then sets his jaw as well.

Harry watches him dance.

It’s not the first time Harry has come to this club, and it won’t be the last, but it is the first time he’s seen Teddy here. He hasn’t gotten changed, is wearing the same ratty t-shirt, leather jacket and torn jeans, and Harry would have thought Teddy wouldn't get a foot in the door of a place like this while dressed like that. But he’s young, and he’s hot, and that’s a dress code all unto itself ― Harry knows that much from the clubs he used to frequent back in the states. No bouncer is going to turn away a kid like Teddy. Harry hadn’t gotten changed himself, coming here straight from the garage in his boots and black work shirt. He can still vaguely smell the motor oil on his hands, and he likes it, likes the way it grounds him in the swirling, throbbing bass of the music and the gyrating movements of Teddy’s hips against his dance partner ― some burly man with tattoos down his left arm, and built like a fucking tree-trunk to boot. Harry can’t look away, even though the way this guy is moving closer to Teddy makes his teeth ache.

As if sensing Harry’s eyes on him, Teddy looks over his shoulder, smiles as innocently as he’s ever done, then winks. He whispers something into the man’s ear, and Harry can see the guy’s shoulders shake as he chuckles, sees Teddy smile as the man slides his hands down to cup Teddy’s arse and ―

Harry turns away. He cricks his neck, trying to control his breathing. Fuck, he thinks unsteadily, trying not to think of that man’s hands on Teddy, of Teddy’s lips so close to his ear. It’s none of his business what Teddy does. Harry shouldn’t be here, shouldn't be seeing this. It’s none of his business, he tells himself again, trying to squash the violent jealousy rolling inside him.

He takes three steps before he bumps into someone, mutters a distracted “excuse me”, and then looks up at the familiar timbre of the man’s laugh.

“We’ve got to stop meeting like this, Harry.”

“Charlie?”

Charlie’s grin is wide and open as he pulls Harry into a hug, thumps him on the back. Harry shouldn’t be surprised to see him here; Charlie is, after all, the man who introduced Harry to this club when he moved back here.

“The first thing you’re gonna want to know, after you’ve unpacked that is, is where you can blow off some steam. If you wanna go hard, go Muggle, and I know just the place,” Charlie had said that night, with a wink as full of suggestion as his tone, and Harry had fought the urge to blush. Charlie still has that effect on him sometimes, even though it’s been years, well over a decade even, since Harry had drunkenly thrown himself at Charlie, and since Charlie had gently rebuffed him.

“Not because I don’t want to, mind. But because you’re as pissed as the proverbial newt, Harry. If we do this, I want you to remember it. And ideally to be able to stand upright on your own, sweetheart.”

He’d put Harry to bed instead, but taken him up on his offer again three nights later, and he was right; Harry definitely remembered it. There were any number of reasons as to why they shouldn’t have slept together all those years ago, in that brief gap after the war and before he and Ginny had started up again, but it was everything that Harry had needed at the time, a comfort he allowed himself and which Charlie happily gave. Even after all this time, the scent of Charlie’s cologne, the sight of his toothy smile and close-cropped ginger hair, is almost soothing. Harry can’t help but smile back.

“Ah, you know how it is. Long day. Came here to get away from a few…” Harry shakes his head. “From a bit of a problem. It's not really working, though.” He sighs. “Reckon I might call it a night, actually.”

Charlie hums, nods slowly, but Harry can’t miss the flick of his eyes towards Teddy and the plank of a man he’s presumably still grinding against. Harry doesn't want to turn around and check, but he can picture it easily enough. Harry pointedly doesn’t look back at the dance floor, hoping that perhaps Charlie hasn’t noticed, but he knows it’s useless. Nothing gets by Charlie.

“A problem, huh.” Charlie steps aside to let a slim man past them, and Harry moves with him, standing against the wall. “Looks like it might have followed you.” He grins, and Harry shuts his eyes. “If the way that young man is looking over at you is any indication, that is. And if my eyes don’t deceive me, then ― yep, that is definitely Lupin junior, and he is,” Charlie whistles gently, “definitely trying to get your attention.”

“Merlin.” Harry can feel his face starting to colour. He’d been dreading this moment, when someone else would notice what Teddy was doing ― and worse, would figure out what Harry was thinking. “That obvious, is it?” he asks, trying to sound casual. It's loud enough in here that he might have gotten away with it, if it was anyone other than Charlie, that is.

Charlie takes a measured sip of his drink, the staggered flashes from the lights in the club reflecting off the amber liquid. His throat bobs as he swallows, as he runs his hand over his lightly stubbled jaw. He’s pushing forty-five, and Charlie is still fit, still ruggedly handsome. Harry can’t help but wonder if Charlie is the reason Teddy knows about this particular club, if Charlie showed Teddy this place too. He’d like to ask, but he knows it’s not worth the risk of finding out the answer is yes.

“Well, that depends which bit you mean. Obvious that Teddy wants his godfather?” Charlie asks plainly. “Or that you want him right back?” he adds, one eyebrow raised, and Harry freezes. He’s not answering that. He can’t answer that ― can he? Not replying might just make it even clearer what his feelings are on the matter, but denying it feels impossible. He might as well deny the scar on his forehead, the war on his resume, the indent on his ring finger where his wedding band used to sit. Charlie’s not going to believe him either way.

“Look, Charlie…” he starts, then trails off. He has no defence to this, no excuses he wants to hear out loud. He does want Teddy, and he doesn't want to lie to Charlie. But he can’t admit it, not here in this club, not in the sanctuary of his garage, not out loud anyway.

Charlie stares him down for a long moment, then laughs gently, shaking his head.

“At ease, soldier, I'm not here to judge. I suspected, though.” He leans his shoulder against the wall, and Harry rests his back against it, letting his breath out in a tense sigh. He’s relieved Charlie isn’t judging him; he wouldn't know what to with himself, if he was swimming in waters which even Charlie bloody Weasley found morally tepid. But the music is still too loud, and the flashes of blue in his periphery are making his head spin. He suddenly feels too old to be here, to be feeling like this.

“You suspected,” Harry repeats dryly, rubbing at the bridge of his nose under his glasses.

“Yeah. He’s none too subtle, your boy.”

“He’s not my ―” Harry swallows, cuts it off. That's another lie he doesn't want to say out loud. Charlie smiles at him gently, the creases of his eyes making him look impossibly fond, and Harry gives up. He might not be too old for this, but he is definitely too tired.

“This is fucked.”

Charlie laughs. “Is it? Doesn't seem like that bad a problem to have, really.”

Harry wants to laugh right back at him, humourlessly. “Oh, it’s not, is it?”

“Sure it isn’t. Fit young guy like him, chasing you like you’re made of gold.” Charlie shrugs. “S’not a bad thing to be wanted, Harry.”

“That's just it though.” Harry runs his hand through his hair. It snags on a tangle, and he pulls it out in frustration. “He doesn't want me! He wants… I don't know what he wants. He’s pissed off with me for leaving, I do know that much, and he has every right to be. If I lay a finger on him I’m gonna… I'm gonna fuck everything up between us.”

Charlie bites his lip, and Harry runs his hand over the stubble of his jaw, surprised by his own vehemence. Maybe he’s drunker than he thought he was. More likely, though, he’s just tired of bottling this up.

“Can I be frank with you, Harry?” At Harry’s nod, Charlie continues, his tone careful. “It seems like things might already be a bit messed up between you two.”

Harry barks a sour laugh. “Yeah, no shit.” Charlie is right; that ship has sailed. “He hates me for leaving,” he reiterates blankly, guilt washing over him again. He looks away, rubbing at a knot in his shoulder. “I should never have left ―” he starts, but Charlie grasps his shoulder, slips his arm roughly around his neck.

“Nope. None of that. I won't hear it,” he says, pressing his glass into Harry’s hand. Harry takes a grateful sip, then a mouthful at Charlie’s urging. It’s whisky, rich and expensive. Harry makes a face; he can’t stand the stuff, but right now he’d drink motor oil if it was offered by a friendly face, and at least it’s not rum. Harry hasn’t been able to stomach that since Seamus first figured out how to properly turn water into booze, and they turned their eighth year dorm into an impromptu brewery.

“Your divorce was shitty, your life was shitty, you needed a breather, and I don't want you to beat yourself up about it,” Charlie continues. “I love my sister, and I love you, but you were both going to drive each other completely insane if someone didn’t step away, and you did it. It had to be done. And now look at you.” His fingers are warm as he takes the glass back from Harry. “You're back, and you're you again, and you and Gin can stand each other.”

Harry looks down at his boots. Charlie has a point, he knows it, but still. “And Teddy…”

He doesnt finish, and Charlie nods in understanding.

“Teddy got left behind,” he says gently. “And that’s not fair on any kid, let alone one like him who thought the world began and ended with you well before you left. Don’t look at me like that, you know it's true. Kid worshipped you,” Charlie says forcefully, turning to face Harry and pulling his arm away. “And he still does, he’s just older and angrier and… well, he wants your attention in a different way now.”

“Jesus.” Harry fights the rush of heat to his face again at that, at the reminder of what Teddy does want. It's oddly refreshing, calming even, to hear Charlie say it all so plainly, but even so, Harry is not just some older man in Teddy’s life. He’s so much more than that ― at least, he was meant to be.

“I don’t know what to do about that.” He takes Charlie’s glass from him, takes another acrid swig of the golden liquid. “I’m not supposed to want him, he’s not supposed to want me. I was supposed to be his...Like his father, Charlie,” Harry says plaintively.

Charlie makes a sympathetic sound, stands up straighter.

“No, you weren’t, kid.” Charlie shakes his head sadly, but his smile is warm. He’s the same height as Harry, but he’s broader, bigger, and always has been. Harry’s not short, and not as lean as he used to be, but he likes the way Charlie has always seemed larger than him, wiser and less weighed down by life. He can’t imagine talking this over with anyone else right now, not even Ron.

“His father walked into battle, arm in arm with his mother, but like a lot of people they didn't come back out again. There’s not one of us who didn't feel our hearts break that day.” Charlie swallows thickly. “And you did the best you could but you were never their replacement. And you never will be.” His hand is warm against Harry’s shoulder. “You were just meant to be Harry, and that’s all anyone ever expected of you. It’s still all they expect of you. And you’re doing a fine job.”

Harry snorts, ignoring the lump in his throat at Charlie’s words. If only that was all anyone expected of him; he’s never been ‘just Harry’ to anyone, no matter how hard he’s tried. But that’s an old wound, a scar long healed up, if not one that still keeps him up on cold nights. He focuses on the more pressing issue.

“What part of this,” he gestures in Teddy’s direction without looking at him, “seems okay to you?” Harry’s voice is blunt. “He's driving me mad, and I don’t… I don't know what to do with him.”

Charlie shrugs, but his expression is not unkind.

“So fix it,” Charlie says plainly. Harry shakes his head in exasperation.

“You mean get rid of him? Leave again?” He frowns, licking his lips and hating the taste of the whisky that lingers on them. He doesn't know if he can do either of those things.

“No,” Charlie says slowly, as if he’s talking to an idiot. “I mean fix it. Between you, and him, and bugger everyone else. Make it better,” he emphasises, squeezing Harry on the shoulder, before glancing over it at the crowded dancefloor. He raises his brows.

“Or, hey,” Charlie gestures with his half-empty glass at the swirl of bodies behind them, “looks like maybe you won’t have to deal with him tonight after all. Although...you might want to step in there, anyway.”

He looks pointedly at Harry, smiling wryly at his frown. He pats him one last time on the shoulder, before turning and walking back to his companions. Harry watches him go, before looking back at the area Charlie’s gestured at. His stomach swoops, his blood pumping in his ears.

It’s Teddy. It’s Teddy, and he’s not alone.

Harry’s not sure what it is about the scene before him that he hates the most, but he does know what it is that makes him snap. He hates the way the burly man’s hands are still positively curved around Teddy’s arse, hates the way another man has joined them. He’s taller than Teddy, and broader than Charlie even, and Harry can’t stand the sight of him or the way he’s pressed his chest against Teddy’s back ― but that’s not what makes Harry stride across the club, heart thumping and jaw tight.

What Teddy does is none of his business; if he wants to fuck half the men in this club right now, then Harry can’t and won’t move a finger to stop it. But the key word there is if Teddy wants, and that’s not what Harry is seeing.

Underneath the bravado, the brazen looks and the cocky posture, Teddy is shrinking back from their hands. He doesn’t look like he wants this, but more like he doesn’t know how to stop what he’s set in motion, and Harry has seen this scene play out before, has seen the predatory looks of some of the men when younger guys walk by.

Teddy looks uncomfortable, and that? Well, Harry decides that is his business.

He quickens his pace, heading for the burly fucker, the sight of Teddy grasping the man’s wrist and pulling his hand away confirming what he suspected. Harry feels the crackle of magic over his knuckles, feels the urge to Hex both men to the other side of the club, or maybe even the country. This is a Muggle club and he’d be breaking a dozen laws, but for one glorious moment he lets himself revel in the angry thrill of it before he squashes the temptation down. He could do it before they’d even knew what hit them, but he’s not seventeen and reckless anymore, and he doesn’t want any more blood on his hands or spilling over bathroom tiles, metaphorical or otherwise. Anyway, as a wise man once told him, words are a powerful weapon, and Harry’s got just the thing for situations like these.

He grabs the man’s arm.

“Oi, watch it ―”

“Fuck off,” Harry grinds out. The man looks him up and down, then scoffs. Harry sees Teddy’s posture stiffen, feels the eyes of the other men on him too as the crowd jostles them slightly. Good, he thinks. Keep your eyes on me, and your hands off him.

“And who are you, then, his keeper?” Burly laughs, an unpleasant sound. “You don’t look like a bodyguard.” He steps closer, tries to use his slight height advantage to intimidate. Harry wants to laugh ― they always do this, he thinks wryly, always ― but he smiles humourlessly instead.

“He can do what he wants,” the other man chimes in, and Harry doesn’t even have the energy to look at the stupid arsehole. He tenses his fingers on the man’s elbow, digs them in hard, then releases them. Alright, he thinks. We’ll play it their way.

“Teddy, would you like them to fuck off?” he asks mildly, never taking his eyes away from the man’s. He has nice eyes, bright blue and sharp. Cunning, Harry thinks. He hates this man.

“I think I would, yeah.”

Teddy’s voice is soft, quieter than Harry has ever heard it, and he can’t help but glance over at him. Harry’s breath catches in his throat. While his tone is soft, his expression is fierce and his focus entirely on Harry. Harry sees a flicker of green in Teddy’s eyes, in amongst the hazel, and he wonders if Teddy knows he does that. He doesn't want to tell him in case he stops; Harry loves it, that Teddy sometimes unwittingly mimics the people around him. He smiles and it’s as adoring as anything Harry has ever seen, and he doesn't know what to do with the emotion it stirs up inside him.

The spell is broken as Teddy glances away, annoyed at the other man touching his arm, and Harry tries to center himself, to pull away from the glow of Teddy looking at him like he’s just hung the moon. He reminds himself that they’re in a Muggle club, in the middle of London, and that they’re on the verge of making a scene.

“You’ve been dancing with me all night, kid,” the man purrs. “I thought we were gonna have some fun.” Teddy pulls away.

“You don’t even remember my name.”

The man frowns, as though remembering Teddy’s name was never on his agenda, just as his companion snorts derisively.

“Whatever, mate,” he says to Harry. “Kid’s all yours. He’s not worth it anyw ―”

“Don’t finish that sentence,” Harry spits fiercely, and for one moment the lights in the club flicker and come on, the music falters. There’s a rush of sound from the crowd, disappointment and confusion as the darkness of the room is replaced by invasive light before it quickly shuts off again. The music swells up around them again. Harry breathes in sharply, trying to rein himself in, as the patrons begin to dance again with renewed vigour and the two men exit through the crowd. Good riddance, Harry thinks, rubbing at his neck and trying to will away the headache he can feel blooming behind his eyes.

He shouldn't have come here.

“Did you do that?” Teddy asks, eyes bright again. He looks young like this, like that boy who used to think Harry was the greatest man alive when he came to visit. Harry can’t deal with how it makes him feel, that look on this handsome young man’s face, the desire it brings him and the guilt that always follows hard on its heels. He shoves his hands in his pockets as if that will help him control it.

“Go home, Teddy,” he snaps, more harshly than he’d expected, and Teddy’s expression falls. He frowns, more hurt than angry.

“Oh, what, so now you’ve sent them packing you’re gonna turn on me?”

“Don’t start ―”

“You just want me to leave so you can cosy up to Uncle Charlie again.”

“No, that’s not ―”

Harry shakes his head, trying not to lose his temper. The lights in the club are low, as he grabs Teddy’s arm, pulls him out of the crowd and towards the exit. He needs to get out of here, get both of them out of here. Teddy lets himself be led for a few steps, away from the teeming dancers, then pulls his arm away when he realises Harry is leading them to the door.

“I’m not ready to leave,” he states.

“You are. We are leaving.” Harry immediately regret his words when Teddy steps close again ― too close.

“Are we leaving together?” he asks gently, hopefully, and Harry’s cock screams yes while he forces his mouth to grit out,

“No. You are going home.”

Teddy’s expression falls immediately.

“Fuck you,” he spits, his tone almost hurt, before his eyes flash maliciously. “I should have stuck with those two,” he says, sweetly. “At least they were gonna put their money where their mouth is.” He steps closer again, and Harry catches his cologne again, the scent faded but still there, as he feels the warmth from Teddy’s body. It’s hot, too hot in here all of a sudden. Harry feels smothered.

“At least they were willing to do more than just look ―”

Stop!”

Harry’s voice is louder than he expected, loud enough to make Teddy blink and widen his eyes at getting a reaction from Harry. Two people to their left begin to titter at their “lovers’ spat”.

“Don’t worry, honey, I would be locking that down too if I were you,” a young man says with a salacious wink, and Harry doesn’t know whether he’s talking to him or Teddy. His friend grabs him, shocked laughter bubbling out of her as she apologises and drags them away. Harry groans, shutting his eyes and rubbing the bridge of his nose, the metal of his glasses bumping against his fingers. He opens his eyes, just as Teddy is about to open his mouth to speak again, but Harry can’t take this anymore.

“Not here,” he manages, and Teddy swallows.

“Where then? When are you ever gonna ―”

“Outside.”

Harry doesn't wait to see if Teddy is following him, just makes a beeline for the side-exit. The heat and noise of the crowded club is stifling him, and he needs air, need to be able to breathe in something which isn’t Teddy. As he steps into the alleyway, the cool rush of night air hits him like a bucket of water, and the absence of noise is overwhelming in its relief. He shakes his arms out, too hot in his jacket, then runs his hands through his hair as his boots slap on the wet concrete. It’s still raining, gentle mist falling through the light of the street lamps, and Harry walks slowly into the alley, the chaotic intensity of the club already behind him as he heads for a darker corner. There’s a man squatting against the wall nearby, cigarette poised at his lips. The smoke smells sweet, enticing. Cloves. Harry thinks he might ask for one; he's only smoked a handful of times, but he liked the way the clove cigarettes crackled when he inhaled, the sweet flavour they'd leave on his lips. Before he can though, he sees the man’s eyes flit to someone standing behind him. The man stands and walks off, and Harry knows Teddy has followed him out.

“You used to say I was your favourite.” Teddy’s boots scuff on the dirty alleyway, but his step is light, his voice even lighter. “Your favourite boy. Remember that?”

Harry doesn't turn around, frowning instead at the change of subject, the change of Teddy’s tone. He can still smell the faint smoke of the cloves, and he inhales it in, imagines it settling in his lungs.

“I couldn't understand why you left, at first. What I’d done wrong.” Harry shuts his eyes, regret flooding through him at Teddy’s words. “I thought it must have been something I’d done, because you stopped looking happy when you came around. The last time you visited before you went, you didn't call me anything, not darling or your favourite, not even Teddy. You barely talked to me, just hugged me goodbye and then left. I thought you were angry with me.”

Harry turns around, his chest tight and his throat caught in a vice. He remembers that day, but barely. He was exhausted, in such a rush to get ready, to get his house packed up and get out of the damn country. He remembers having cake with Andromeda, being so preoccupied by everything he had to get done. He doesn't remember neglecting to pay attention to Teddy, but of course he fucking doesn't ― that's what neglecting looks like, he thinks, furious with himself.

“Teddy, I’m ―” Harry stops at the expression on Teddy’s face. He swallows hard, reaches out and touches Teddy’s shoulder instead. “It had nothing to do with you. Me leaving.”

Teddy shakes his head, expression caught somewhere between a sneer and a frown.

“Don’t worry, I’m not stupid,” he says wryly. “I know you didn’t leave because of me. Figured that one out years ago,” he mumbles. “Didn’t make it feel any better though. Worse, even.” Teddy sniffs, the corners of his mouth turning down. “Because it meant I didn’t really matter. It was almost nicer, in a way, thinking it had something to do with me, and not that you just left me behind.”

Teddy looks away, and Harry draws in a shaky breath. He wasn't prepared for this, for this kind of honesty from Teddy. Insults, propositions, lewd suggestions, yes. He was prepared to weather them all, but this raw and open emotion from Teddy, this candour, momentarily stuns him.

“Maybe you don't remember,” Teddy murmurs after a quiet moment. “But I liked it when you called me that. Your favourite boy.” Teddy’s face is open, expression so earnest and sincere, and Harry doesn't know what to say. He squeezes Teddy’s shoulder, fingers tight on the sturdy shape of it. The leather creaks slightly under Harry’s hand. He remembers calling Teddy that, of course he does. He never felt taller than when he had Teddy by his side, never felt prouder of him. He feels the surging wave of guilt building behind his ribs, guilt for not leaving Teddy safely wrapped in the knowledge of how much he meant to him, and Harry can’t stand it. He looks away.

In an instant, Teddy’s expression hardens.

“But I’ve got something you want now, don't I?” he says, stepping closer. “I’ve got something that you want.”

Harry fights the urge to step away, but his back is against the wall anyway ― where does he expect to go, right through it? His hand is still on Teddy’s shoulder, and he tightens his fingers, although whether to pull Teddy closer or push him away, he can't tell anymore.

“You want to fuck me, don't you Harry?” Teddy murmurs. Harry's fingers tighten again, almost involuntarily.

“Teddy,” he says roughly, but it's not angry. It sounds desperate to his ears. “I can't. I’m not,” he searches for the words, licking his lips as Teddy steps closer, his eyes flicking to Harry’s lips to watch the movement. “I’m not like them,” he finally says.

Teddy frowns in confusion, a gentle crease of his brows. “Who?”

“Them!” Harry repeats, his voice hoarse. “Those men in there. I’m not like them, Teddy, I can’t be,” he finishes, aware that the space between them is closing ― that it would take only the barest movement for Harry to close it completely.

“No, you're not like them,” Teddy whispers, his expression open again. He looks so young, and not young at all at the same time, and Harry can see so much of the boy he left behind and so much more of the man he’s become now.

Teddy bites his lip, leans a little closer.

“Fucking me won't make you like them, Harry,” he murmurs, his voice so sweet and his words so blunt. The contradiction of it makes Harry ache, his dick beginning to thicken in his jeans. Teddy tilts his head to one side.

“Do you want to know how many men have done that, Harry?” he whispers, stepping closer. His lips are almost touching Harry’s cheek, his cheeks flushing slightly but his eyes determined. “How many have bent me over, pushed inside me and made me beg?”

Harry’s jaw clenches as he cuts off a sound. Jealousy and a sudden, possessive anger roll queasily inside of him as he watches Teddy’s mouth forming the words, the sudden switch to direct and sexual startling him. How many? He wants to reply. How many have done that to you? Because it shouldn't have been them. They don't deserve to lay a single finger on you. It shouldn’t be them. It should be

Harry inhales sharply, Teddy’s lips brushing his ear.

“None,” Teddy breathes. It's so quiet, the barest ghost of a word; it sounds deafening to Harry all the same. “No one has done that,” Teddy repeats, stepping back slightly to see Harry’s expression. Harry thinks he can still feel Teddy’s lips against his skin. He concentrates on breathing, on schooling his face into something appropriate. Inside, he’s reeling.

“And you know why,” he says, his voice almost desperate, lines appearing on his young face between his brows. “I want you,” he whispers fiercely, and Harry can hear it now. This isn't a game for Teddy, at least not entirely. There’s a part of him which wants to toy with Harry, yes, but Charlie was right; there’s a bigger part of Teddy that just wants his attention, Harry’s eyes on him. That just wants him.

And suddenly, it doesn't seem so hard. Maybe it's the expression on Teddy’s face, the candid admission of his own secrets, of his virginity, or maybe Harry just isn't as strong as he thought he was. Perhaps the act of shrugging off responsibility, misguided or true, always feels like a relief. Whatever it is, suddenly this doesn't feel like such a weight to Harry. This is Teddy, his godson, the boy he left behind and the man who wants him now.

If anyone is going to take care of him, it needs to be Harry.

Teddy’s breath brushes over Harry’s cheek, an uneven and almost frantic thing. Harry’s never thought before how much it must cost Teddy to keep asking, to keep getting rejected.

Do you want to fuck me? Teddy has asked a dozen times, but only now does Harry hear the real words ― the real question ― underneath it.

Do you want me, Harry? Please tell me you want me.

Harry rubs the pad of his thumb over the line of Teddy’s collarbone, the bump of his shoulder. It's slightly cold out here now, the softly falling rain helping the early AM chill settle in, and Harry can feel a faint tremble in Teddy’s arms. Teddy’s eyes are wide, his hair falling across his forehead, a perfect shock of turquoise-blue.

Do you want me, Harry?

Harry kisses him.

It’s not fierce, or hard. Harry’s mouth is gentle against Teddy’s own and he feels the gentle puff of surprised air from Teddy’s mouth. He doesn’t move, his eyes closed, standing still in the quiet of the alleyway and the soft fall of the rain. Still, Harry feels so still, and Teddy’s lips are so soft when they part on a surprised sigh, as if he can't believe this is happening. Two of us, Harry thinks. That makes two of us.

He deepens the kiss.

Teddy kisses him back like he’s never wanted anything more. His mouth isn't clumsy, but he lets Harry lead, let's him set the pace. Harry sighs into it, frowning himself at the sweetness of it, the sheer relief of it all. So much effort spent denying he wanted this, and here he is. He can't remember the last time giving in to something felt so right.

Teddy shudders as Harry pulls his lower lip between his own, and Harry moves his hands over Teddy’s arms, pulling him closer. Cold, he thinks, Teddy might be cold, and Harry needs to take care of him.

He runs his hands over Teddy’s arms to his shoulders, the smattering of rain running over the leather and collecting on his hands, and Harry feels Teddy shiver again as he places them on either side of his face. Harry brushes his palms against the faintest of stubble he feels on Teddy’s cheeks. He tilts Teddy’s head, pushes his tongue between his lips and feels Teddy moan into it. Teddy’s hands come up to loosely grip Harry’s arms, his breathing becoming uneven as he kisses Harry back, again, and again. Harry wants to wrap his arms around him, to crush Teddy to his chest and feel the weight of Teddy against him. He wants to feel the line of Teddy’s cock through his jeans, to press his own against it, he realises with a jolt.

Harry pulls away.

He breathes in the cold air in a large swallow, rests his forehead against Teddy’s. He shakes his head when Teddy tries to kiss him again, holds Teddy’s face firm in his palms.

“Not here,” he rumbles, his voice so low he barely recognises it himself. Teddy nods, his expression almost dazed.

“Not here,” Teddy repeats absently. He blinks distractedly, his pupils dilated in the light hazel of his irises. Harry kisses the corner of his mouth, inhaling to steady his own breathing. He smooths one hand back down Teddy’s arm, grips it tight just above the elbow.

“Come on, darling,” he murmurs, and Teddy’s breath hitches.

They disappear with a crack.

*

The work room is exactly as he left it.

The wards let them through easily. Harry doesn't wobble under the jolt of Apparition, but Teddy does. Harry steadies him, his hand firm on Teddy’s bicep.

“Easy,” he mumbles, the sound feeling thunderous in the quiet, cold room. It’s big, his work room, with its high ceiling and hard concrete floor. There’s nothing welcoming or comforting about it, but it feels like a home to Harry. Hermione jokes about that, about how Harry is always looking for homes in the spaces he inhabits, and it’s true. His flat with Alexander had soft carpets, high windows and a beautiful garden, and still it only ever felt temporary to Harry, a place he kept his things. It didn’t feel like home.

Teddy looks around, frowning gently. “You sleep here?” he asks quietly, and Harry shakes his head. He’s not sure why he brought Teddy here, and not straight to the flat he lives in upstairs, but he finds he doesn’t want to leave just yet. It feels different, better, that it starts here ― whatever it is that is about to happen.

Harry purses his lips, reality starting to creep around him. What are you about to start? it whispers. Harry can’t answer, can’t put on a name on what he’s feeling. He takes another step into the room, then stops as Teddy grips the front of his shirt tightly. He pulls Harry back, almost as if he’s worried Harry will leave, and Harry lets himself be pulled. There’s a small part of him that still thinks he should resist, a protest perched on the tip of his lips, but it’s weak thing, barely upright. He forgets it entirely when he lets Teddy kiss him again.

It’s harder than earlier, more desperate. Before, Teddy seemed shocked it was happening, that Harry was acquiescing, but now he tries to set the pace, all teeth and tongue. Harry doesn’t stop him, doesn't even consider it, his self control slipping away like sand through his fingers. He isn’t sure if he ever had that strong a grip on it, to be honest. He moans as Teddy steps closer, their bodies flush, and the warmth of it, the potential of what is about to happen, has Harry half hard in his jeans. He moves his hands up into Teddy’s hair, taking over the kiss and Teddy lets his mouth fall open, groans low in his throat. He’s hard, and Harry can feel it, can feel the hot line of his erection against his hip.

His fists tighten in Harry’s shirt, and Harry places his own hands on Teddy’s hips, walking him backwards until they hit the workbench. There’s a clatter of sound as something metallic ― a spanner, a wrench ― tumbles off and hits the floor. Harry pulls away to look at it, the sound a jolt of distraction, but Teddy pulls him back, bites at his jaw, down his neck. Harry groans, loud and uncontrollable, hips jerking against Teddy’s. The backs of Teddy’s thighs are pressed against the bench, pinned between the hard wood and Harry, and his breathing is harsh and loud as he begins to pull at Harry’s clothes.

Again, Harry wants to protest, thinks he should try and stop this, but he can’t do it. It’s hollow, weak, lip service to something he doesn’t feel. He wants this, has wanted it for weeks, and when Teddy’s fingers scrabble at him to untuck his shirt, tugging at his belt, Harry pulls back to give him room. When Teddy’s fingers open his fly, brushing against his cock, Harry groans, clenching his teeth. He clenches them harder at the look of desire, of joy on Teddy’s face.

“You feel nice,” Teddy mumbles, eyes wide, and Harry wonders if this is the first time Teddy has done something like this ― has undone the notches of a man’s belt, then slipped his hand between their legs. Teddy’s hand feels confident, sure enough, but his cheeks are flushed, his pulse a flickering beat in his neck, and Harry can’t tell. He doesn't care either way.

“Teddy,” he breathes gruffly. He steps back and Teddy whines, fingers in the dip of Harry’s pocket to draw him back, but Harry shakes his head, looks down at him. Teddy looks perfect, Harry thinks, leaning against the bench, his shirt pulling up slightly and his jeans tight around the shape of his hard cock. Harry can see the rips in the denim, on his knee and the back of Teddy’s thigh, and he wants to slip his hand under there. He wants to touch that smooth skin, to grip it tight. He wants to feel Teddy against him, and he worries at his lip, pushes some of his persistently untidy hair off of his forehead.

He gestures towards Teddy’s fly.

“Undo these,” he says quietly, trying to keep the desire out of his voice. Control, he thinks. He needs to bring this back under his command, get himself under control. He inhales as he watches Teddy’s hands move to his fly, undoing the button, the zip. His fingers shake a little, with excitement or nerves, and Harry covers them with his own, kisses Teddy’s cheek, feels him moan into it. Harry eases his fly down fully, groaning himself when Teddy grabs his hand and pushes it between his legs.

“Fuck,” Harry mutters as he curls his fingers around Teddy’s cock, and Teddy gasps. His mouth is open wide, breath gusting against Harry’s cheek, and Harry runs his fingers up and down the length of him. It’s awkward, the angle hard with the restricting material of Teddy’s jeans, his pants, but Teddy is staring down at Harry’s hand like it’s the most captivating thing he’s ever seen. His hips pump into Harry’s grip, one hand on Harry’s wrist and the other on his shoulder, creeping up into his hair. Harry groans at the feel of it, of Teddy’s fingers touching the soft skin of his nape, and Harry tightens his grip, moves his fist a little faster. Teddy gasps again, high and uneven, and Harry knows he could make him come this like, could make Teddy spill onto his fist, and it would be over. He continues at the same pace, stopping only when Teddy grips his wrist, hard, pulling his hand away.

“I want ―” he starts, but cuts off on a strangled sound, when Harry moves his hands to the rip in the back of his jeans, slides his fingers through it. “Oh, fuck.” Teddy drops his head to Harry’s shoulder, then arches his neck to the side when Harry kisses it. Harry squeezes Teddy’s thigh, the heavy material of his jeans pressing against his wrist as he slides his hand further up to grip Teddy’s arse cheek. His skin is so soft, warm, all tight muscle and coiled tension and Harry sucks at the skin of Teddy’s neck, kisses his throat when Teddy lets his head drop back.

“I know,” Harry mutters, biting gently over Teddy’s Adam’s apple. It’s indescribable, he thinks, how much he wants to touch Teddy’s skin, with hands and lips and more. He’s never thought of himself as that tactile a person, but there’s no part of Teddy he doesn't want to touch, to feel. “I know what you want, Teddy.” He kisses Teddy’s throat again, feels it bob underneath his mouth as Teddy swallows. He does know what Teddy wants, at least he thinks he does now, and he wants to give it to him. He kisses over Teddy’s jaw, extracting his hands from the tangle of ripped denim then resting them on Teddy’s hips. The skin is warm, flushed, and Harry slides his fingers over the hem of Teddy’s underwear.

He steps back.

“Turn around,” Harry says quietly. He sees a flash of tangled emotion in Teddy’s eyes ― excitement, surprise, nervousness, one on top of the other ― and Harry feels the tenderness swell in him. He knows that feeling, the terrible and exciting fear of getting what you wanted. Teddy recovers quickly, his expression turning confident and sure once more, but Harry knows what he’s seen. Teddy has asked for this, his voice and words as bold as anything but underneath that is something different, something gentle and skittish, and Harry can see that now. He smiles, as warmly as he ever has, and watches Teddy’s throat bob as he swallows, cheeks flushing further. Harry pulls Teddy towards him, kissing him gently, but forcefully. The contact brings them close together, his groin flush against Teddy’s own, and the first brush of naked skin on skin makes Teddy groan, makes Harry’s pulse quicken.

“Do you want me to fuck you?” he says gently, lips brushing against the shell of Teddy’s ear. Teddy's brows crease, his expression almost pained as he nods frantically.

"Yeah," he mumbles back, nodding again. "Yes, I do." Harry pulls Teddy’s earlobe between his teeth, feels him shiver in response.

“Then turn around, Teddy,” Harry repeats, voice low and soft. “I’m going to do something.” Harry kisses Teddy again, pulls away before Teddy can respond. “I’m going to make you feel good. If you want me to,” he rumbles against Teddy’s lips, and Harry feels Teddy shudder at that, feels his mouth falling open. Teddy nods, his eyes wide and trusting, and Harry feels something in his chest grow tight at the sight. He kisses Teddy one last time, steps back to give him room and Teddy turns, rests his hands against the wood of the work bench. Harry sees his fingers tighten into fists and he runs his own down Teddy’s back, smooths his palms over his sides. Teddy’s jeans are low on his hips, and Harry moves his hands to them, fits the tips of his fingers under the hem of Teddy’s underwear just as he steps closer, kisses the back of Teddy’s neck.

“Tell me if it’s too much,” he murmurs. Teddy’s hair brushes against his lips as Teddy quickly shakes his head.

“It won’t be,” he says, fingers curling even tighter on the wood of the desk as Harry runs his fingers around the elastic of his pants.

“Tell me, Teddy,” Harry insists, then drops to his knees, easing Teddy’s underwear down to his thighs as he goes.

He kisses the globe of Teddy’s arse cheek, mouths over the soft skin there as he whispers the spell he always uses for this, casting wandlessly. He feels Teddy stiffen, confusion or perhaps understanding running through him as Harry parts Teddy’s cheeks.

Teddy’s gasp echoes loudly in the quiet of the work room.

Four years ago, was the first time Harry ever did this to someone. It was a warm evening, and Harry was still feeling disoriented from his Portkey to New York, from having left his home and everyone he knew. He can’t remember the man’s name, or the name of the club he met him in, but Harry remembers the sounds the guy made, the feeling of him writhing underneath Harry’s tongue.

The sounds Teddy is making are already better.

Harry spreads Teddy’s cheeks wider, his hands gentle but insistent as he moves his lips over Teddy’s hole. He can hear Teddy’s harsh breathing, hears the hitching sound he makes when Harry presses forwards, kissing at the puckered flesh there. He feels Teddy’s hips jerk, bucking forwards and then back as he tries to spread his legs wider, and Harry feels certain this is not something Teddy has done before, not something he expected to happen. Harry hums, warmth running through him at the idea of being the first to do this to him. It feels intimate, and always has for Harry, and he licks his own lips, wetting them before kissing open mouthed between Teddy’s cheeks once more. Teddy chokes on a sound, pushing back against Harry’s mouth and Harry swipes his tongue over Teddy’s entrance, feels his own cock twitch between his legs.

He pushes forwards further with his tongue.

“Ahhuh!”

Something falls off the workbench again as Teddy spreads his fingers, splays them on the dark wood. Harry spreads his own fingers on Teddy’s hot skin, thumbs circling close to Teddy’s hole as Harry kisses over it, his tongue more insistent with each passing swipe. He can feel the tension in Teddy’s legs, his thighs, hear the shaky timbre of his voice as Harry finally presses his tongue inside. Teddy’s hips roll forwards, then back again as Harry widens his mouth, moves his tongue in a way he knows feels electrifying. It shocked him, the first time someone had done this, how good the brush of a tongue, of lips, could feel. He pulls back and runs his lips around the rim of Teddy’s hole and feels him pushing back for more, and suddenly Harry wants to give it to him.

He kisses Teddy’s arse cheek, bites gently at the skin and holds back a moan of his own as Teddy gasps again, a loud and choked sound. His wand is in his pocket, easily within his reach, but on his knees as he is Harry knows he would have to move in order to get it, and he knows these spells well enough to cast them without it. A rare skill, he’s been told, to be able to cast well without the use of an aid, and Harry almost laughs at the thought of people knowing what he uses it for. He swallows that down, conjuring lube with a muttered word and feeling the cold weight of it on his fingers.

He kisses wetly over Teddy’s skin again, using his dry hand to pry his cheeks apart and gently moving his thumb over Teddy’s hole. The sound Teddy makes ― a low, strangled groan ― shoots straight to Harry’s dick.

“Teddy,” Harry rumbles, blinking in surprise at the rough tone in his own voice. “Is this okay?” he asks hoarsely as he runs the pad of his thumb over the sensitive, furled skin.

God!”

“Tell me this is okay.”

“Ah, ye ― yess!” Teddy hisses, trying to spread his legs wider, his jeans pulling tight around his legs. “Yes, do it,” he insists, his voice high and reedy.

He inhales sharply as Harry slips his thumb inside.

It’s tight, so tight, as Harry presses his thumb forward, watching it move past the firm muscle. Teddy is tense above him, his shoulders drawn taut, and Harry strokes up and over his side in long, calming motions. Teddy exhales again, the air leaving him in shaky pants, and Harry eases his thumb out slightly, then pushes back in again as Teddy inhales. He sets a pace, moving in and out on every second exhale, inhale, of Teddy’s, and Harry groans himself when he feels Teddy fully relax above him. He can remember the first time someone did this to him too, the way it felt to have someone touch him there, and he opens his mouth against Teddy’s skin again at the flush of arousal the memory brings him. He’d loved it, loved the feeling of letting go, of someone inside him, around him ― he wants to do that for Teddy, to make him feel the way Harry felt. He wants to see him come undone.

He pulls his thumb free, replacing it with his index finger, and biting his lip as it easily slips inside. Teddy moans at the change, as Harry eases in to first knuckle, still moving in time with Teddy’s shaking breaths. He runs his hand down the flank of Teddy’s thigh, trying to be gentle, but Harry can feel the tension in his own body, feels it building further as he adds a second finger. There’ll be a burn now, he knows, the stretch pulling as he pushes them both against Teddy's hole, feels the resistance peak and then ebb away. Teddy’s loose, pliant, above him, dropping to his elbows and moaning almost continuously now as Harry moves his two fingers in to the first knuckle, the second, out and then back in again. He thinks about conjuring more lube, about adding a third, and he knows Teddy could take it. Harry likes doing that, likes watching his fingers push inside, and he twists them now, searching for that spot he knows will make Teddy see stars.

He knows the exact moment he finds it when he feels Teddy’s hips buck, his mouth dropping open on a cut off shout.

“Is that good, Teddy?” he asks, feels Teddy stutter out a groan as Harry massages over his prostate again.

“Teddy.” Harry moves his hand up Teddy’s thigh, over the soft hair and the hard muscle before resting at his hip. “Tell me this is good,” he repeats. On his knees, Harry can’t see Teddy’s face, can only hear him, feel the way he moves, but he needs to hear him say it before he takes this any further.

“Yes,” Teddy keens, rolling his hips in time with the movement of Harry’s hand. “Yes, it feels so…” he doesn’t finish, his voice quavering slightly as Harry pushes inside a little deeper, avoiding his prostate only to brush it again on the next stroke inside. Teddy moans, low and desperate, arching his back and trying to take Harry’s fingers in deeper. Harry brushes his damp hair away from his forehead, grips his own cock briefly then releases it, the fleeting contact both welcome and nowhere near enough.

He moves his fingers faster.

“Do you want more?” he grinds out.

Ahh!”

“Teddy.”

“Yes!”

Harry twists his fingers, pushing his glasses up a little higher and breathing hard himself as he conjures more lube, directly to his free hand. He rolls it between forefinger and thumb before reaching forwards, leaning up on his knees and wrapping his fingers around Teddy’s aching cock.

He’s hard underneath Harry’s fingers, and Harry feels his own cock twitch in sympathy as he runs his slick palm along Teddy’s length. Teddy gasps above him, pushing back against Harry’s fingers, forwards into his fist, pinioned between Harry’s hands. Harry runs his fingers over the head of Teddy’s cock, feels the pre come there, and he knows Teddy is close. Hell, at his age Harry wouldn't have lasted this long, would have spilled over the wood of the work bench at the first touch of warm fingers between his legs. The thought of it, of feeling Teddy come, makes Harry shut his eyes. He groans as he ups his pace on Teddy’s cock, feels Teddy shudder beneath him before Teddy suddenly pushes up from his elbows, resting his weight back onto his palms with unsteady hands.

“No, no, Har ―” Teddy gasps down a breath, shallow and uneven. Harry stills, brows creasing in concern. “Harry, you said,” Teddy breaks off again, hips moving almost involuntarily between Harry’s hands even as Teddy tries to keep still. “You said you’d, ah, you’d fu ― I want you to, to fuck me.” Teddy swallows. “Don’t make me come yet. Not yet. You said. I want.”

Teddy doesn't finish the sentence, but Harry hears it all the same. He knows what Teddy wants, feels the same desire thrumming in his own veins. Teddy’s voice is broken, rushed, an edge to it Harry hasn’t heard it before ― arousal, yes, but desperation now too, and Harry’s forehead creases further as he lets that wash over him, lets any final reservation or doubts about what he’s about to do leave him. He lets them fall away, his shoulders straightening as he kisses Teddy’s thigh. Teddy’s head drops forward, his mouth open on a groan as Harry moves his fingers inside him one last time before withdrawing them completely.

He knows what Teddy wants.

“Harry,” Teddy mumbles, elbows locked as Harry stands behind him. “Please…”

“Shh, I know.” Harry pulls Teddy upright back against his chest. Teddy falls against him easily, jeans low on his thighs, cock angry and red as it juts away from his body. His face is flushed, ruddy, eyes unfocussed as his head lolls back against Harry’s shoulder, and Harry wraps his arms around Teddy’s waist, holds him tight. He wants to touch Teddy, to smooth his hands over his stomach and up higher to his nipples, his chest, but he can see how close Teddy is. He’s breathing hard, mouth open and neck exposed and hips still moving back and forth slightly, uncontrollably. Harry rocks with him, kissing Teddy’s cheek. He moves one hand to tilt Teddy’s head to the side, to kiss the line of his neck, and Teddy’s breath hitches again, back arching as he arches to give Harry access.

“Harry,” he whimpers. “You said you would ―”

“I know, darling,” Harry runs his lips over Teddy’s feverish skin, kisses the ridge of his cheekbone as Teddy shudders beneath him at the name. Harry’s jeans are undone, and he lets himself grind up against the firm shape of Teddy’s arse, revelling himself in the strange, possessive curl of emotion in his chest at hearing Teddy say his own name that way. Harry’s never heard a word sound so loaded, so meaningful, as his own name does falling out of Teddy’s flushed lips, and suddenly he doesn't want to be patient. He doesn’t want to make Teddy wait.

“Come on.”

Harry tightens his arms around Teddy, feels the ground slip out from underneath him as he Apparates them both upstairs.

*

Harry’s bedroom is dark, faint light from the street below creeping in from the open window. The breeze lifts the gauzy curtains, moulding the pale fabric into rounded shapes and then letting them settle back down against the wooden sill. It’s still raining outside, heavier than before but still a harmless drizzle, and Harry fits his hands to Teddy’s sides, holding him steady as the lurch of Apparition knocks him off balance.

Teddy recovers quickly, turns in Harry’s arms and kisses him hard and deep. Harry groans into it, lets Teddy pull him flush against him, and he wants to slow down, to ask Teddy again if this is okay, but he kisses Teddy harder instead.

“Teddy,” Harry rumbles, hands moving to Teddy’s arse, pulling his cheeks apart and kneading at the rounded globes. “Teddy,” he says again. He grits his teeth, moves his fingers closer to Teddy’s hole, and it's too much. Harry can feel his control slipping, what little was left of it anyway. His breathing is harsh and ragged as he circles Teddy’s entrance and he groans when Teddy grabs his wrist, pushing two of Harry’s fingers inside. Harry can barely swallow his groan in time.

“God,” Harry murmurs, “you have no idea.”

“What?” Teddy asks breathlessly.

“What you do to me.” Harry, lets the honesty slip past his lips. “What you've been doing to me.”

Teddy laughs, a high and incredulous sound as Harry kisses down his neck, moves his fingers inside him again. His cock is hard and warm against Teddy’s hip, and Harry can't stop himself from grinding against him.

“You kept saying no,” Teddy mutters to the room, eyes shut as he groans, smiling at the ceiling, and Harry grinds against him harder. Teddy’s breath catches as Harry’s fingers slip deeper inside him, the lube making it easy. Teddy opens his eyes, expression somewhere between dazed and euphoric. He leans forward slightly, his breath puffing warm and sweet against Harry’s mouth.

“Fuck me,” Teddy gasps against his lips.

“Yes,” Harry grinds out, free hand making a fist in Teddy’s shirt, bunching the material up tight enough to rip.

“Please fuck me.”

Yes.”

Harry pulls his fingers free, grabbing at the hem of his own t-shirt and pulling it roughly over his head. He kicks his jeans away as Teddy does the same.

Harry rubs a hand over his face, setting his glasses aside on the bedside counter and pushing his hair away from his forehead. The room blurs slightly, dulling around the edges, but this close Harry can still easily see Teddy as he undresses. It’s uncoordinated, Teddy’s movements clumsy and over eager as he kicks first one leg of his jeans and then the other away, the denim landing in a heap with Harry’s clothes. Teddy’s t-shirt lands on top of them as he rights himself, standing straight and tall and naked in Harry’s bedroom. Harry looks at him, takes in the line of his abdomen, the soft hair at his navel and leading lower, and Harry’s breath catches at the slight tilt of his posture. Teddy’s chest is rising and falling rapidly, his vibrant hair messy from the speed with which he pulled off his t-shirt, threw it on the ground. He’s beautiful, tall and slim, and easily one of the most attractive people Harry has ever been with, has ever seen. Yet he carries himself with a brazen confidence, the recklessness of youth, and at the same time an almost complete unawareness of his own appeal. Teddy’s body is taut with arousal, his expression almost pained as he waits to take his cue from Harry about what will happen next, and the innocence of it all, Teddy’s lack of experience, makes Harry ache.

He pulls Teddy against him, kisses him hard as he walks them backwards towards his bed.

Harry’s bed is large, poorly made, his sheets a deep green and his pillows haphazardly thrown into place near the headboard. Harry runs the knuckles of one hand over Teddy’s stomach, feels it twitch away beneath his fingers as he kisses him again and again, tongue sliding against Teddy’s. Harry can’t remember the last time he wanted someone as much as he wants Teddy, and the knowledge is both electrifying and terrifying. He lets it wash over him, lets Teddy bite at his lips and run unsteady hands to his shoulders, and stops when his calves hit the hard wood of his bedframe.

He feels Teddy’s breath catch as he presses himself fully against Harry’s chest. His cock is hard, has stayed hard this whole time, and Harry can barely suppress a sound himself as he feels a smear of precome collect in the dip of his hip as Teddy grinds against him, his movements already jerky again, desperate. He must be dying to come, Harry thinks, having been so close, having been asking for weeks. Harry kisses him one last time, feels Teddy sigh into it, before he sits down on the edge of the bed.

“Shh,” he says at Teddy’s whine of protest at the removal of contact. “Come here.”

He holds Teddy’s gaze as he pulls him closer, hands firm at Teddy’s hips as he kisses his stomach, the dip of his hip, then runs his hand down Teddy’s thigh to his knee.

“Like this,” Harry mumbles, bending Teddy’s knee gently as he coaxes him onto the bed, pulls him forwards to straddle him. Harry swallows as Teddy complies, kneeling over his lap and looking down at Harry. His hands rest on Harry’s shoulders, the touch almost light even as every muscle in Teddy’s body seems taut with anticipation. Harry kisses him, wraps one hand around Teddy and moves them both backwards slightly. The motion brings Teddy’s arse closer to his cock, his spread legs letting the head brush against Teddy’s balls, and Harry feels Teddy moan, fingers tightening.

“Good boy,” Harry murmurs, heart thumping and Teddy shuts his eyes on a groan, hips inching forwards to press his cock against Harry’s chest. “Good boy,” he whispers again, feeling his own cock twitch and Teddy visibly shiver at the words.

Harry conjures more lube.

He knows Teddy is loose, pliant from before, that he’s slick inside, but Harry wants this to be good. He needs it to feel good for Teddy. Harry’s bigger than average, not enough to be an issue but enough to make him cautious, make him want to ease the way. Even with Harry’s fingers stretching him earlier, even with the lube Harry’s smearing down his own cock, he knows Teddy will feel the burn from his size, would need to take it slow even if this wasn't his first time.

His first time.

Harry bites his lip, pulling his hand away from his own aching cock. He wipes the excess lube on the duvet cover, taking a moment to steady himself from the overpowering arousal, the warmth this knowledge brings him once more. He needs to make this good. He knows Teddy won’t forget this, but he wants it to be for all the right reasons, whatever they might be given the tangled mess of who they are and why they both wants this, Harry thinks. Because Harry needs to make Teddy feel good, because Teddy has wanted Harry since before he even understood what it was to want someone, because every part of Harry that is saying “you shouldn't, remember who he is” is drowned out by the cacophony of “he needs you. You need this.” Harry’s never been able to wrap his head around the way some things can feel so right, so good, when everything he’s ever been taught says he shouldn't want it at all. He’s learned by now that happiness, peace, tends to lie somewhere in the grey between right and wrong, in the soft acceptance that what feels good sometimes really is the best thing to do.

Harry sighs, bringing his hands to Teddy’s arse cheeks. He gently prises them apart as he brings Teddy to rest over his cock.

“Ready, now?”

“Oh, god,” Teddy whispers urgently, hips rolling down against the head of Harry’s. “Yes, yes.”

“Shh. Slow, Teddy,” Harry mumbles against Teddy’s skin, looking up and meeting his eyes. “Go slowly, darling.”

Teddy chokes on another hitching sound, his fingers claw-like on Harry’s shoulders as he pushes himself down on Harry’s cock, Harry’s hands guiding him. Harry remembers to breathe out, to suck down another gulp of air as he feels Teddy’s hole contracting around the head of his cock, feels Teddy’s breath against his neck as Teddy pressed his cheek against Harry’s. Harry grunts when he feels ― ah ― the head slip inside.

“Oh, fuck, Harry.” Harry tightens his hands on Teddy's arse as he feels Teddy tense around him, his words hitching and uneven as he pushes himself down further. “Harry,” Teddy says again, inching down further and taking more of Harry inside him, and Harry groans.

“Shh, Teddy,” he reassures, even as he feels the sweat prickling on the base of his spine, as he curls his toes on the carpet of his bedroom floor so as not to thrust up into Teddy. “You’re doing so well.”

“Uhh!”

“Yes, slow, God, slow. Like that.” Harry flicks his tongue out, tastes the salty tang of sweat from his upper lip as Teddy eases himself down, taking more of Harry in. Harry inhales shakily, running his hands along Teddy’s thighs as he waits for Teddy to adjust, ignoring the part of him that wants to grab Teddy and slam him down into the cradle of Harry’s hips.

Teddy finally sits down fully, his hips meeting Harry’s as he takes in the last agonising inch. His mouth is open in a wide, stunned O, his brow creased and his hair messy across his forehead, and Harry lets himself exhale.

“Okay?” he grinds out, hands settling on Teddy’s hips. He tightens them when Teddy nods. Teddy’s eyes are squeezed tightly shut, the flush of his cheeks, on his chest, visible even in the scant light of the room. He’s shaking, gently, tightly coiled energy thrumming in his body as he tries to relax, to accommodate the intrusion. Harry keeps his eyes trained on Teddy’s face, searching for any signs of pain, but while he looks stunned, a small frown between his brows as he moves his hips in the tiniest of increments, Harry doesn’t see discomfort. He rubs his hands over Teddy’s thighs.

“Good, Teddy. Good.” Harry purses his lips, cutting off a moan as Teddy straightens his back. “When you’re ready,” he starts, breathing hard. “Move when it feels ― oh!”

Harry can't stop the groan that leaves him as Teddy rocks his hips, circling them.

“Like that?” Teddy asks, his voice shaky. “Do I move like that?”

“Oh, fuck.” Harry flexes his shoulders, fighting to keep still. Teddy’s voice is small, sweat collecting on his thighs, on his forehead. “Yes.”

Teddy rolls his hips again, lifting off slightly and then inching back down, his eyes open now but unfocused, his cock still hard as it rubs against Harry’s belly. Teddy does it again, gasping as he pulls off further, taking Harry in halfway and then sliding back down. He jerks suddenly, letting out a loud and strangled sound as Harry’s cock hits his prostate.

“Oh, god, that ―”

“Yes,” Harry encourages, “there. Like that, Teddy, yes.”

Harry hums, hips fidgeting against the bed as he helps Teddy set the pace with his hands. Teddy stares down at him with wide eyes as he rocks his hips, chasing the feeling again and exhaling shakily every time he finds it.

“That feels so good,” Teddy whispers, his voice high, incredulous, like he hadn’t expected it to feel like that.

Harry laughs once, ending on a guttural groan as he nods, kisses Teddy’s chin and lets the sensation of his cock moving inside Teddy wash over him. Teddy is tight, hot, his movements small but perfect as he seeks out the feeling again and again, rides Harry with ever increasing lifts of his hips. There’s a rhythm to it, a slow grind, and Harry can see the muscles of Teddy’s stomach tighten and release as he moves, feel the jump of his thighs. Teddy’s knees move against the bed as he rocks against Harry faster, and then faster again, and Harry looks up when Teddy makes a soft mewling sound of frustration.

“What, Teddy?”

Teddy frowns, pushing his ruined hair away from his face and rolling his hips again.

Harry can feel Teddy’s hips moving faster, rising and falling as much as he can with his knees against Harry’s hips like this, and Teddy makes another hummed sound of muffled frustration as Harry realises he’s trying to get more friction, more movement, to get more something. Harry’s cock twitches inside him, his own thighs tensing with every grind of Teddy’s hips, with every filthy, sweet sound Teddy makes.

“What do you want, Teddy?” he grits out, knowing the answer but needing Teddy to say it all the same.

“Ah, I want ―” Teddy licks his lips, rocks his hips faster.

“Tell me.”

Teddy pants, shaking his head and kissing at Harry’s cheeks as he tries and fails to find the words for what he’s asking. “Just. I can't. I want more of ― ”

He jerks his hips again, and Harry grunts, hands tightening on Teddy’s skin. He stands, sudden and quick, and Teddy gasps as Harry wraps one arm around Teddy's back, holding him firm. He turns them, kneeing his way onto the bed and towards the pillow, pushing Teddy to lie down against them. His cock slips free, and Teddy mewls again, trying to sit up. Harry pushes him back down with one hand, kisses his chest, his collarbone. He takes a moment to center himself before before moving back to Teddy’s lips, even as Teddy writhes underneath him, hips lifting off the bed and searching for contact. Harry kisses him, finally, hard and hungry and Teddy’s fingers scrabble at his shoulder, his neck, trying to pull him down, to pull Harry back inside him. Harry kisses him again to quiet him as he reaches out blindly to grab a pillow. He lifts Teddy’s hips with one hand, kissing over his jaw and shifting the pillow underneath him, feels Teddy’s legs settle around his waist as he does so. Harry runs his hand over the side of Teddy’s thigh, pulling his leg up higher around him, the change in position bringing the head of his cock to brush against Teddy’s slick hole. Teddy moans, lips bitten and red. Gentle, Harry reminds himself frantically, as he lines his cock up against Teddy. It’ll be deeper, like this, so Harry wants to be gently, slow, but his cock slips inside as Teddy bucks against him, his eyes falling shut and his expression dazed.

“Oh, god,” Teddy groans, mouth open against Harry’s shoulder.

“Teddy,” Harry says, not sure what he’s asking, as he carefully thrusts in as slowly as he can.

“Yes,” Teddy gasps, so quietly Harry can barely hear it, his face flushed and his hands clenching in the duvet beneath them. “Oh fuck, yes, that’s ―”

He lifts his hips, grinding himself up against Harry’s pelvis and letting out a shattered moan as Harry slides in deep. Harry pulls out, the tip of his cock still inside. He holds still, the muscles of his arms straining as he feels Teddy cant his hips beneath him.

“Like this?” Harry asks, leaning over Teddy to kiss at his neck as he begins to fuck into him shallowly. He feels Teddy nod frantically beneath him, heels digging into Harry’s back as he tries to pull Harry closer, pull him deeper. Harry lifts one hand, wraps it around Teddy’s wrist and pulls it up to rest next to Teddy head. He leans his weight on it, does the same to Teddy’s other hand, and Teddy keens. His movements are frantic, erratic, as he tries to get Harry to move, to fuck him deeper and Harry shuts his eyes, feels something in him coiled tight enough to snap at any moment. He slams his hips forwards, pulls back and does it again, harder.

“Oh, fuck!”

Teddy’s mouth is open, a litany of sounds falling out of it, each one as incoherent as the last as Harry holds his wrists, fucks into him again and again. He can barely think, barely form words around how good it feels, Teddy’s knees brushing his sides, his hips slapping against Teddy’s arse. He thinks he should slow down, should take this slower, but he couldn't stop the movement of his hips if he tried, can't pull himself away from the way Teddy is bucking back against him, Teddy’s cock leaking a trail of precome down against his own stomach. All too soon Harry feels the building tension of his orgasm spreading up his spine, making the hairs at the back of neck stand on end and he rests his weight on one hand, the other flying to pull at Teddy’s cock. Teddy shouts, pushing up against Harry as his shoulders push back against the bed for leverage, one foot falling to the bed as Harry’s thrust turn erratic. He’s so close, his balls tight against his body as he fucks into Teddy and the only thing stopping from coming is the need to see Teddy come first. He wanks Teddy faster, his hand a blur of Teddy’s cock. He watches Teddy moan long and low, his eyes scrunched shut and his mouth falling open as he arches his back, head pressing back into the pillow and blue hair a riot against it. He stills completely, every muscle of his body taut and his face twisted in an agony of ecstasy as his cock jerks in Harry’s hand.

“Yes,” Harry hisses, sucking one lip into his mouth and flicking his sweaty hair out of his eyes as he fees Teddy’s cock twitch again, spilling over Harry’s fingers, onto his own stomach and chest.

Yes,” Harry repeats. “Good, Teddy, that’s so g ―” he cuts off with a grunt as he feels Teddy contract around him, and Harry stills, lets himself feel it from his chest down to his thighs as the first pulse of his orgasm hits. He groans, low and guttural, at the sensation and then again as he feels Teddy’s hands at his sides, unsteady but determined as they pull him down on top of him. Harry pants, feeling boneless as Teddy keens, canting his hips and circling them, keeping Harry inside him as he comes long and hard, his head spinning slightly with the intensity of it.

He rests his weight on his elbows, both of them panting hard as Harry waits for the world to come back to him. He can’t remember the last time he had sex like that.

Harry doesn't know how long they lay like that, as he rests his weight on instead arms, Teddy’s breath hot and almost stifling on his neck as he clings to Harry. He holds him tighter when Harry tries to sit up, his body spent and a deep, sated tiredness settling over him. He feels his cock softening, sees Teddy shiver slightly at the sensation of his come leaking out of him, and Harry pushes himself onto his hands. Teddy whines, trying to pull Harry back. His face looks dazed, eyes glazed and unfocussed and his muscles lax with the kind of bone deep exhaustion that comes from an orgasm like that, and Harry can’t help but kiss him again, slide his hand around Teddy’s jaw. Reality is creeping around Harry’s periphery, getting closer as each of Harry’s shaking breaths evens out, but Harry shuts his eyes, moves his hand to cradle Teddy’s face. He doesn’t want to deal with that right now.

Teddy sighs into it, and Harry brushes the hair away from Teddy’s face. He runs his thumb over Teddy’s lips, lets the rough pad glide over Teddy’s kiss swollen mouth.

“Okay?” Harry asks thickly.

Teddy swallows, nods back. His eyes are hooded, tired, and there’s something so fond and content in them that Harry’s breath catches.

“Good,” he says, his voice low. He sits up on his heels and murmurs a wandless Scourgify over them both before pulling the duvet back. It takes a moment but he manages, in a tangle of tired and sore limbs, to get Teddy and himself settled under the covers. He thinks maybe he should take Teddy home, shouldn't keep him here for the night, but the idea of making him leave feels so wrong that Harry can’t really even entertain it. When Harry settles Teddy against his side, feels his face turn into Harry’s neck and his steady breathing against his skin, he wonders if he’s ever going to be able to get Teddy out of his bed.

“Okay?” he asks again, needing to hear the answer once more, needs to know that Teddy is alright. He smooths the hair away from Teddy’s forehead.

“Tomorrow ―” Teddy says, but he stops, doesn’t finish, burying his face into Harry’s neck instead. Harry tightens his arms around him, feels Teddy hum against his throat, relaxing slightly.

“Shh,” Harry murmurs. “Sleep, Teddy.”

“In th’ morning…” Teddy starts again, voice thick and tired, but Harry kisses him lightly on the forehead, pushes away all thoughts of what this will look like once dawn has arrived, shown light on the cracks in who they are and who they’re meant to be.

“Sleep now,” he says, holding Teddy tighter, and shutting his own eyes. He listens to the patter of the rain as it beats against his roof, Teddy’s breathing slowly evening out into the pattern of sleep, and only then does Harry let himself drift off as well.

*

The morning comes easier than Harry expected.

It’s a beautiful day, the sun streaming in through the curtains over Harry’s bedroom window, and Harry wakes up slowly, his body heavy. He stretches, feeling the tension in his body easing away, before he frowns, looking over at the rucked up covers to his left.

Teddy’s not in the bed.

Harry sits up sharply, the covers low on his hips as he blinks the sleep out of his eyes, reaches out to grab his glasses. He has them on, one hand running through his messy hair, when the door clicks open, Teddy returning from the bathroom. Harry almost sighs with the relief of seeing he’s still here ― you idiot, of course he was in the bathroom ― and Teddy smiles, tentative and tired. He’s wearing only his underwear, soft blue material, and there are goosebumps prickling over his stomach and torso. There’s a mark on his neck, a softly purpling bruise, and some darkening shapes on his hips, his wrists, where Harry’s hands had been. God, but he’s gorgeous, Harry thinks, feeling his cock stir underneath the covers at the reminders on Teddy’s body of what they did the night before. He adjusts the way he’s sitting, bringing his knees up a little higher, but Teddy smiles, half coy and half cheeky. Merlin, but Teddy can read Harry, his reactions to him, like a fucking book. Clever little bastard, Harry thinks with wry amusement.

Of course he is ― this is Remus’s boy, Tonks’s son.

The fact hits him sudden and hard, and he winces, looks away. Teddy sees it.

“Don’t,” Teddy says quietly, his posture tensing defensively and something like worry creeping over his face

“Teddy, look ―” Harry starts, but he stops when he sees Teddy’s expression harden further.

“Don’t do that!” Teddy’s jaw tightens, as he walks across the room to where their clothes are lying. “I fucking hate it when you do that, so will you just stop it already?”

Teddy pulls a t-shirt from the pile, before he realises it’s Harry's and tosses it aside. His underwear sits low around his hips, slightly askew, one side lower than the other.

“Stop what, exactly?” Harry croaks.

Teddy flings his arms out then drops them to his sides. “When you look at me like that! The guilt routine. I knew you’d do this, even after we ―” Teddy flushes, not finishing that thought. “But I mean.” He runs a hand through his hair, neatening the thick black mess of it. It’s so different to Harry’s even when it turns this jet black colour, so different to his own tangled mess. Teddy’s is so soft-looking, with only the slightest wave. “I’m an adult,” he says looking at Harry imploringly. Harry looks away.

“You’re my godson ―” he starts, but Teddy just snorts caustically.

“Yeah, but what does that even mean, huh?” He shakes his head. “You knew me when I was in nappies. Big fucking deal. Loads of people did.” He turns, pulling more of his clothes out from under Harry’s, untangling someone’s jeans from a discarded jacket. He begins to wrestle the crumpled denim on, his face stony. “You knew my parents, my big hero parents, and now I’m made of cotton wool and sunshine and can’t be touched ―”

“Teddy ―” Harry frowns as Teddy starts pulling his shirt on. His hands shake slightly as he leans against them in the bed.

“― I’m some sort of precious war orphan to you, aren’t I? I’m just a fucking stand in for them. Nobody lay a hand on the Lupin kid, just feel sorry for him instead ―”

Teddy!” Harry repeats frantically as he watches Teddy angrily struggle with his jeans. His mouth is contorted and his face splotchy and red in places as he roughly pulls at the heavy material, jamming one leg in and then the other, roughly hiking them up then reaching for his jacket.

“‘Cause I’m not a fucking person am I, to you, or anyone, I’m just their bloody kid, these people I never even met, That’s all I am, but it still didn’t stop you from leaving me, did it!” he yells, giving up on his jacket.

He throws it roughly across the room. It flutters before it hits the wall, knocking over a lamp in the corner. Teddy stands up straighter, his chest heaving. He looks down at Harry, then quickly away again, seeming to have stunned himself into silence by his own outburst. His hands are shaking slightly, his eyes bright as he blinks back surprised, angry tears. Harry stares at him, shocked himself, his chest tight as Teddy’s words settle over him.

“Teddy,” he eventually says, his voice gentle. He waits until Teddy looks up at him, abandoning his furious glaring match with his own feet. The look he gives Harry is wary, almost ashamed, almost unable to hold eye contact.

“Come here,” Harry says, holding one hand out. Teddy stares at it cautiously, his face still flushed with the deep embarrassment and remorse that being honest, revealing how you truly feel, can bring.

He’s not sure what part of what Teddy has just said he should address first, or if he should address it at all. It sounds so familiar that he thinks he could have said it himself when he was younger. When he felt constantly weighed down by the memory of people he never even knew, angry at everyone looking at him and seeing their faces ― and desperately aware of the hole in his life where they should be. Harry hates himself for adding to that, for leaving too, but he casts it aside; this isn’t the time for him, and his guilt and regrets. He’s here now, and so is Teddy, and Harry has time to make this right again. With every little piece Teddy reveals, Harry grows more confident of that fact.

“Come back to bed,” he insists, tilting his head and curling his fingers in invitation. Teddy shifts his weight from foot to foot, his t-shirt askew and his jeans still undone, roughly hiked up his hips, before he slowly walks back to the bed. It reminds Harry of the Thestral foals he’d seen with Hagrid once, their movements cautious, wary, as they decided whether to come up to him and the meat he offered them. Harry sighs in relief when the bed dips, Teddy kneeling on it again.

Harry motions once more for Teddy to come closer, slips an arm around his shoulders, and lies down again, propped up against the pillows. Teddy settles back against his chest, slowly relaxing, before he suddenly wraps his arm around Harry’s waist, hugs him tight. Harry hums, running his hand over Teddy’s arm, up the sleeve of his t-shirt. He wants to say you’re more than your parents, Teddy, and he wants to say, that’s not all I see when I look at you, but he thinks this isn’t the right time, that it might feel forced or disingenuous.

“What a fucking mess,” Harry says instead, his voice light, and Teddy chokes out a strangled, surprised laugh. Teddy nods, his nose rubbing against the stubble at Harry’s jaw. Harry swallows, choosing his next words carefully.

“I have to work today,” he says softly. He tightens his fingers on Teddy’s arm as he feels him stiffen.

“You want me to leave,” Teddy says thickly, but Harry shakes his head. He was braced for that response, for Teddy to see it as rejection. Harry expects it will be a while before that truly goes away, if it ever does. He hopes it will.

“No,” he clarifies quietly. “Not until I start work, at least. And then I want you to come back tonight.”

Teddy looks up at him, his fringe falling heavy across his eyes

“Come back?”

“Yes.” Harry leans back against the pillow the soft press of the material grounding him amidst the storm of emotions pooling inside him.

“You mean we’re gonna, again ―” There’s something a lot like hope in Teddy’s voice, and a matching feeling in Harry’s chest. He sniffs, twisting his lips to keep the smile down.

“Maybe.” Harry taps his finger on Teddy’s arm, even though he knows the answer is really yes. “You’re gonna do some work, though.”

Teddy swallows, his Adam’s apple bobbing and a gentle frown on his face. “Work? Like, with all the…” He fishes for the word, sitting up to properly look at Harry’s face. “The car bits?”

Harry laughs, once. “Yes, with all the bits.” He licks his lips. “I’ll teach you how the bike works. Maybe even teach you to ride it. If you’d like that. I know I would,” Harry adds as he watches Teddy’s face.

Harry’s voice is soft, gentle, but Teddy looks taken aback, surprised. He blinks, eyes fluttering rapidly, and Harry sees they’re still a little red around the edges. Up close, Harry can see that the mark on his neck is a similar shade of bruised red. Harry sees the flicker of emotions running across Teddy’s face, and he wishes he could catalogue them all. He wishes he could get this kid to talk to him easily without trying to bring Harry closer while keeping him at an arm’s length at the same time, but he doesn't judge him for it. He gets it now, at least, can relate to it as well. It’ll take a while before things run smoothly between them ― before he can make this purr the way he wants it to ― but he knows how to do it now. Teddy is volatile, confused and beautiful, and still just young enough that whatever he feels seems like it will overwhelm him, and Harry is going to fix this.

Teddy swallows again, runs a hand jerkily through his hair. The movement is awkward, and his voice tentative when he speaks.

“Yeah, I would like that,” he mumbles, a timid smile dancing around the corners of his lips.

“Good.” Harry runs his fingers down to Teddy’s elbow. “Come around six. Wear something appropriate.” He looks Teddy up and down, stops at the smile spreading over his lips. “You know what I mean. Something suitable,” Harry clarifies.

Teddy grins, his hair falling over his eyes. “So, overalls and grease, then?” he jokes, and Harry could almost laugh with the relief it brings him to hear Teddy’s voice lighten.

Harry smiles back, shaking his head. “Just overalls will be fine. Closed shoes. Nothing you’re too precious about getting dirty in.” He hears Teddy breathe a soft laugh as he settles his head against Harry’s chest, and Harry rests his hand on Teddy’s hair. “We supply the grease.”

Teddy nods against his chest, his cheek brushing against Harry’s skin. Harry sighs, carding his fingers through Teddy hair, watching it turn from a shining black to a gentle, familiar turquoise in their wake. He closes his eyes, smiling faintly as he feels Teddy’s chest rising and falling in time with his own breathing. He needs to get up, to shower and get to work, but there’s a little time left, and so he lets Teddy dose, lets his own mind wander as the curtains flutter in the gentle summer breeze.

Outside, it starts to softly rain again.

*