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Dynasty

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Thought we built a dynasty that heaven couldn't shake
Thought we built a dynasty like nothing ever made
Thought we built a dynasty forever couldn't break up

__ Dynasty | MIIA __

 


 

Dumbledore asked in a voice laced with false caring, “Harry, you and Voldemort, what exactly had happened between you two?”

The raven haired boy in front of him took a deep breath before looking straight into his supervisor’s eyes, “I slept with him.”

For a long moment, Dumbledore just scrutinized the other boy in silence, finally the old man gravely said, “Abort the mission, Harry. You are compromised.”

“Bullshit,” Harry cursed before his brain had time to catch up with his mouth. Living among a bunch of criminals for so long hadn’t provided any help for his self-restraint, instead his bad impulses learnt a numerous amount of bad words. “You guys gave me permission to fake indentities, sell highly sensitive information, torture, kill, and even destroy evidence and cover it up as long as I could keep my cover. But when I slept with the Dark Lord, suddenly I’m compromised?”

"Harry," Dumbledore heaved a long sigh. “Never allow your feelings to interfere in your mission. This is the first and most crucial rule for a spy.” The old man stopped for a bit, “This is all my fault, I shouldn’t have used you in the first place. You’re too trusting, and with all the things Voldemort had done for you, I knew sooner or later, this would happen.”

“The only way out is death,” Harry tried to reason with the man.

“We will arrange everything for you,” Dumbledore gave a soothing smile.

“He won’t believe I’m dead without a body,” Harry still hoped he could prolong the inevitable end, even if it was only for a little while. He didn’t realize he had sunked that deep.

Dumbledore still appeared as calm as ever, “You will get caught, and be killed in prison, by Grindelwald’s men. Your body will get disfigured beyond recognition.”

“You…” Harry choked, immediately realized the police’s real intention, “You want to bait the two biggest gangs of England into a full on war?”

Dumbledore smile softly, blue eyes twinkling, “Only a hypothesis unless you’re saying Tom really would initiate a war in revenge for your death.”

“I can’t do that,” Harry shook his head, “I can’t make him to see my body. I promised,” His voice nearly turned into begging.

Dumbledore furrowed his brows, “Either you accept our terms, or risk blowning your cover. You think we want to force you?” The old man’s gentle voice filled with sympathy, Harry really wanted to punch him. “But have you ever thought of the consequences if He find out who you really are, a spy for the police? Do you really think He would still be as loving and cherishing you as he’d been now? His Death Eaters would still be kind and respectful toward you? You know Tom despises traitors most, Harry.”

Harry didn’t answer, his eyes burnt with unshed tears.

“Even if you don’t worry for yourself, think about your godfather. Have you thought of what Tom would do to your dear Sirius?” Dumbledore casually reminded him.

Threats. This was blantantly threatening! Harry felt he was suffocating under too much despairs.

If only… If only he could go back and undo everything, Harry truly wished he had walked into the Gaunts without any hidden purpose.

If only he could, he would refuse to make that deal with the police, packed up his belongings and run as far away as he could the moment Dumbledore knew of his existence.

If only he could, he would…

If only, but if only didn’t exist in life.

Feelings grown from lying seeds were fated to die prematurely.

He and Tom couldn’t have a fairytale ending, because Tom lived in the real world, and Harry was born in a tragical fantasy. He was always unable to keep anything that he held dear.

Resigned, Harry nodded, hearing the sound of hope shattered, and his quivering heart cried out.

 


 

Harry had walked into Tom’s life with his breathtaking beauty, so young and innocent, and had stolen the heart of the most dangerous man in England with his brilliant mind and bravery soul.

His little lover had walked out of his life in handcuffs and with a tainted record. Multiple crime accusations guaranteed Harry a life sentence in a maximum security prison. The Dark Lord was beyond furious.

No matter how many bribes or threats the Dark side attempted; even with the most renowned and competent lawyer in the country, Lucius Malfoy, on this case, they still couldn’t strike against the Order’s determination in bringing down Voldemort’s most precious asset, his right-hand man, his lover.

It was a (figuratively) bloody battle in court. Drawn-out and exhausting.

In the end, there could only be one winner.

And it wasn’t Voldemort.

Harry kissed Tom goodbye like it was their last kiss, desperate and filled with love. It was.

“I will get you out. I promise.” Tom whispered in his ears, frustrated and angry. He didn’t want to let go. He had to.

“I believe you,” Harry breathed, with tearful eyes but still smiling, so sweet and oh so trusting. He actually didn’t.

In only one week, the so-called Light side triumphal sent Harry Evans-Black’s death notification back to the Dark Lord.

And all hell broke loose.

 

Chapter Text

Harry Potter didn’t have a loving childhood. Growing up being bullied and isolated by his own blood relatives, the very people who should have cared for him, Harry learnt how to cook, to garden, to clean the house, and so many other household chores from the time he was five. The boy also had a very intimate relationship with starvation, broken bones, and malnourishment.

At the very tender age of eight, Harry had already started losing hope of ever being rescued from the hellhole he was living in. That was when Sirius Black came, crashing down the front door in all his glorious fury. The silver-grey eyed man was Harry’s first and only savior; even when the man murdered the Dursleys in cold blood with his bare hands, Harry still didn’t feel scared when Sirius held him tight in his chest with bloody arms and tainted shirt. He only felt warm and protected.

Many people would say what Sirius had done was cruel and insane, dragging an innocent boy into the world of criminals and outlaws. But Harry would strongly disagree. He was not innocent, hadn't been for a very long time, he was forced to grow up so fast and painfully. What Sirius had carelessly done right in front of his eyes didn’t fuck up Harry. No, he had been screwed up long before that.

Sirius Black was Harry Potter’s godfather, his father’s best friend and cousin. The undeniably insane and brutal man had held Harry so tenderly and protected the boy like a rabid dog.

Sirius often jokingly called himself his fairy godmother, coming straight out from a fairytale book, to rescue Harry and bring him to the prince.

Harry silently called the man his avenging angel. Sirius was the one who taught Harry all of his fighting skills, helped him learn how to survive in the underworld. Life with Sirius wasn’t filled with sunshine and rainbows, it was crimson red and constant running and hiding from the cops.

But it was far better than the Dursleys. It was perfect, even. Sirius was Harry’s anchor to sanity as much as he was to the man’s.

Sirius Black had been Harry Potter's home.

 


 

Harry stood behind the one-way mirror, silently watching as the Dark Lord, the most feared criminal in England, slowly crumbled down in front of his eyes. He could see the tiny cracks in Voldemort’s impassive mask when he silently listened to the debriefing on Harry Evans-Black’s fatal accident from a smirking cop.

At the end of the mocking tone detailing Harry’s current body state, Lucius couldn’t help laying a hand on Voldemort’s shoulder, to offer comfort or to remind his Lord, Harry didn’t know.

The glass before his eyes suddenly turned foggy, startled the green eyed man. Harry didn’t realized he had been unconsciously leaning against the mirror, when the intense silence from Tom got too unbearable. His heart yearned to break through this bulletproof crystal separating him and Tom; his soul cried to be united with its other half.

But he couldn’t. He couldn’t. There was no way back for him now.

It turned out Lucius’ worries had been in vain, when his Lord just calmly asked to see Harry’s body. At that point, Harry turned his head and walked away, clenching his fists so hard blood started dripping down between his fingers. He didn’t want to see Tom’s face when the man saw his gift on the dead body.

The Slytherin locket, Tom’s first present to Harry. The locket that Harry had sworn to never take off. Harry desperately wished he could have hidden it from Dumbledore’s plotting and machinations. It was the only thing Tom’s mother had left for him, damn it.

Too late anyway. His locket was now being used against its past owner, to prove Harry’s undeniable death.

At least he was able to keep it intact from Dumbledore’s plan. He had unashamedly guilt-tripped that old man into making up some bullshit excuses to have the locket undamaged, despite his body being maimed beyond recognization.

The locket was back to where it belonged, and Harry should get as far away from all this as possible.

Harry had killed the foolish fairytale dreamer kid inside him years ago, yet only now did he truly feel that child’s death. With the boy’s last breath, Harry also let go of his tragic love and the name Evans-Black.

Potter was dead.

Evans-Black was gone.

There was only Harry left, with broken dreams and a bleeding heart.

Chapter Text

Harry Potter’s home had been Sirius Black, and that home was torn down on the day of his godfather’s arrest. Several accusations of murders and a kidnapping of an underage child shouldn’t have been enough for a death penalty, if they had had enough money or a decent lawyer. They didn’t have any.

When the judge gave a final verdict, death penalty as predicted, Harry felt like dying. Then the boy started plotting to break into Sirius’ holding cell and set the man free — willing to sacrifice his life in the process just for one more chance of having Sirius back in his life.

Regulus Black happened to intervene in Harry’s dangerous plan just in time. The man was Sirius’ younger brother, the only person Sirius trusted enough to protect his godson, from the boy’s stupid plan to rescue him, really, Sirius understood Harry too well — and also from the cruel fate of being tossed around in the foster care system.

Harry was legally adopted into the Black family through many illegal means, as the disowned eldest heir’s bastard son, with a new last name, Evans-Black.

Each day passed and Harry grew more despairing the nearer the date of Sirius’ execution. That was when an old man with twinkling blue eyes came and offered Harry a deal he couldn’t turn down.

A reduced punishment, life sentence in Azkaban for Sirius, and Harry would have to work as an undercover agent of the police for the price.

Many would describe Albus Dumbledore as a kind-hearted and merciful man, for saving his fallen old student from a death penalty. The old man explained it was because he couldn’t bring himself to see his beloved late protégé’s best friend facing death for saving his son. How… lovely of him.

Harry could see right through the grandfather’s façade of that old man in an instant; he wasn’t naïve or stupid like Dumbledore’s ignorant lambs.

Harry dearly wished he could tell the whole world how their respectable beacon wanted to use a merely fifteen-years-old boy as his secret weapon. Harry wanted to scream how that same man had neglectfully left his late protégé’s only son in an abusive home, never thought of checking on him even once. And Harry also knew now with certainty why Regulus’ relentlessly attempts to plead for a lesser punishment for Sirius had been fallen on deaf ears. It was all because of this fucking manipulative old coot. Hell, even the death penalty could have been a part of his own scheming, just so he could have enough leverage to trap Harry in his webs.

And Harry didn’t believe for one second that a life sentence in Azkaban was merciful; even death would be much more preferable than spending the rest of your life in that hellhole.

But Sirius would live, and Harry could see him again, even if he couldn’t have his godfather’s arms holding him close once more.

Harry Potter was a selfish boy; he didn’t have many, Sirius was his whole world. Of course Harry Evans-Black wouldn’t be any different. They couldn’t let Padfoot go, no matter what.

So with the knowledge that he was jumping right into Dumbledore’s clutches, Harry pulled up his best innocent mask and pretended to tentatively ask some naïve questions, just to appear stupid and vulnerable enough. Then the boy eagerly accepted working for Dumbledore with hopeful eyes and a grateful smile, as though he truly believed he owned that old coot for saving his Sirius.

Hell, Sirius would throw a fit if he knew Harry was playing tricks with this man, not that the boy intended to tell him.

Better not, never preferably.

 

Chapter Text

Harry Potter was a stubborn dreamer, that boy who was almost killed at eight years old. Sirius Black had been able to heal the boy, although he wasn't wholy sane anymore, he was still alive. But Harry Potter could only live in the strong and unyielding arms of his Padfoot, protected him from all harms and cruel reality.

Sirius gave Harry Potter seven years to be a child, to care for nothing, to want for nothing, because Padfoot would give Prongslet everything he asked for. But Harry only asked for Sirius, because Padfoot was his world. And outside of Sirius' warm embrace, Harry Potter couldn't survive.

The boy who dreamed of princes and fairies was buried alive by Harry Evans-Black when he was fifteen.

Evans-Black was a jaded warrior, a survivor. Keeping himself alive to protect the brightest star of that dead child inside his heart. He had been survived just fine, until he caught the attention of that Dark Lord.

Even up to this day, Harry still couldn't figure out which part of his "Fuck off, you perverted old man, I'm not interested," insult appealed to Voldemort. Harry bet his well aimed knee-strike to the man's groin later wouldn't be considered a nice impression, unforgettable maybe, to anyone else, except that fucker apparently. He swore Voldemort must have some lowkey masochistic desires hidden deep inside his dark heart.

Of course Harry didn't know the man looking like sex walked on two legs, who offered a fucking Death In The Afternoon to an underage kid with lustful eyes was the most fearsome Voldemort when he lashed out. How could he, the lowest little shit in the food-chain, have known the Dark Lord's supposed looks?

Harry spent a whole week regretting his hot temper and cursing his stupid bad luck to hell and back inside a dark cell at god-knew-where. At least he was given food and water occasionally; otherwise Harry wouldn't have enough strength to realise his mistake. After that fiasco, Harry was offered, threatened until he accepted, a job at Voldemort's side.

“Like his Lord’s fucking personal maid. Not assistant, not even close.” Ron made sure to tell him so, and then Regulus detailed the whole scandalous story to Sirius with delight at Harry's expense. Hermione laughed for two hours straight. Those cute monsters, really.

At least the man paid well; he just had to endure that man's persistent invasion of his personal space. If not for the money, Harry bet he would have snapped and murdered Voldemort, or died trying, before the frustrated tension between them had enough time to turn into sexual tension.

Harry yielded and gave his sweet sixteen virginity to Voldemort after holding out for nearly half a year. After all, if you were gonna lose your V-card sooner or later, why not lose it to an experienced man who also happened to be hot as hell?

And oh god, sex with Voldemort was truly exquisite, raw and brutal with burning passion. It was blinding pleasure and pain rolled into many uncontrollable orgasms without an ounce of gentleness, not that Harry had expected the Dark Lord to be a gentle partner. And Harry knew deep down he wouldn't be satisfied with leisurely slow sex anyway.

Harry Evans-Black was a formidable storm; he needed a raging hurricane to be able to keep up and force him to submit.

But no matter how great sex with Voldemort was, Harry truly had thought there wouldn't be another time. The boy had heard the rumours about the Dark Lord's past bedwarmers, or one night stands, whatever, and no one had successfully graced the man's bed for the second time. Not that there was anyone brave, or stupid, enough to repeatedly deny the man's advances like him, but still.

He had hoped, prayed, when he woke up sated and sore the next morning (afternoon actually, god the Dark Lord's stamina was inhuman), that Voldemort would leave him alone now. After all, the man had gotten what he wanted, right?

He was sorely mistaken.

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Harry Evans-Black was a name known by everyone in the Dark side. Not as an Inner Circle member, or a Death Eater. No, he was neither.

He was so much more.

He was the only one who dared to stay in the same room when the Dark Lord was having one of his epic explosive outbursts, and was able to walk out in one piece.

He was the only one who had the guts to interrupt an important meeting and dragged the Dark Lord out just because he felt there was something wrong. And not getting shot for doing so.

(But the room exploding just a few minutes later had effectively shut up anyone's complains.)

He was the only one who had jumped in front of a gun to shield the Dark Lord from a near death encounter, and got an explicit command from the man himself to "never pull that stupid move again" — which Harry promptly ignored ("Try me"), stating he couldn't control his subconscious instinct to protect whom he loved. That got him locked up inside Voldemort's bedroom for a whole week of tortures, for disobeying a direct order. But the Inner Circle members would grumpily argued that Harry's screams and begging were more of pleasure than anything.

(Harry officially become Voldemort's lover after that.)

He was the only one who had permission to wrap his arms around the older man whenever he wanted a hug, or suddenly pulled the Dark Lord down for a heated kiss, even jumped the man's bones just because he was horny.

Harry Evans-Black was the Dark Lord's heart. His soul. His love. (Though the man would never admit it out loud.)

Yet there was one thing no one knew. Harry Evans-Black was always destined to be Voldemort's downfall.

Chapter Text

“You said I wouldn’t have to see the like of you again. You said my mission completed the moment I died in Azkaban! Tell me why the fuck you’re here again?” Harry nearly screamed in frustration.

“Please Harry, you have to understand, we really don’t have any other choice.” Dumbledore calmly explained. “We greatly appreciate what you had done to help our cause, and with you out of the picture, Tom has become reckless. But it still took us great efforts and sacrifices to catch him.”

Harry was tempted to ask what kind of sacrifice, but he held it in; this wasn’t the time for sarcasm, yet. “That has nothing to do with me. I’ve done my job, the rest is all yours.”

Dumbledore sighed and Harry mentally shuddered. That sigh always signaled for bad things coming, “We were able to catch him, but there aren’t enough proofs to put Tom behind the bars. We need a key witness, Harry.”

See?!! I knew it, I fucking knew it!’ Harry screeched inside his head, “I’m not doing that,” he cut in bluntly.

“Please, my boy…” Dumbledore began. But Harry cut him off before the man could start his for the Greater Good speech.

“I said no. Voldemort will skin me alive if he sees me on that stand, and you know it.” Harry coldly said.

“Not if he was in jail, my boy,” Dumbledore argued.

Harry laughed humorlessly, “Stop thinking I’m a fool, Albus. We passed that state. Even if Voldemort was put away, he still has his Death Eaters roaming free. Those bloodthirsty killers would hunt me down and murder me in the most creative way, if they knew their Lord’s lover was the one who betrayed them all.”

“My boy, you’ll be given the highest security as the key witness, during and after the trial. No need to worry,” Dumbledore tried to reassure him.

“Oh, but I'm worried plenty,” Harry deadpanned, “seeing how efficiently you people had protected the other witnesses before the trial, with Voldemort in custody, and they still disappeared or suddenly had a change of heart overnight.”

‘Damn it,’ Harry silently cursed hearing Dumbledore heaved a long sigh again, “We could clear all charges had been accused against your godfather, in exchange for your cooperation in this emergency matter, my boy.”

Harry stopped breathing for a moment, “What?”

“Sirius Black could be a free man again, my boy.” Dumbledore helpfully elaborated.

Harry wanted to laugh. What kind of crazy world he was living in, for the supposed good guys to be this fucked up? Offering freedom to a convicted mass murderer just to catch another criminal? Not that Harry didn’t get their point, Voldemort was millions of times more dangerous than Sirius could ever hope to be. But Harry was sure this kind of bribe had to be illegal. If the Light side were so willing to bend the laws they had vowed to uphold, then what was left to separate them from the Dark?

“Then I want a public announcement confirming all the miscarriages of justice against Sirius Black, payment of compensation for falsely incarceration, and a long-term subsidy for therapy to remove any harmful effects of confinement on both mental and physical aspects. Moreover, free of charge for his prison break and running from the law for the last seven months. And lastly,” Harry listed with wicked delight then stopped for dramatic effect before he added, “All of them have to be done before I give my testimony.”

If he was going to risk his neck doing this, then sure as hell he would make it fucking worth all the troubles. He wasn’t about to leave any loophole for this scheming man to use him like a tool again, even if he was pretty sure he wouldn’t survive Tom’s wrathful revenge after this.

Regulus and Hermione would be so proud. Ron would probably freak out, though. And Sirius, oh Sirius... Harry nearly winced, better not wandering into that guilty land now.

"But my boy, you have to understand," Dumbledore argued, frowning. “We don't have much time left before the trial begins."

"For the last time, I'm not your boy," Harry snarled, "And I don't need to understand, I only know you need my help, so either you accept my terms or you walk out of that door with no witness."

While Dumbledore contemplated for a long stretched silence, Harry decided to poke the old coot some more, "Or you can always use your secret spy, you know?" Dumbledore was clearly surprised, and Harry continued on, "You really believed I have been isolated from the world since my death, did you?" He smirked.

“Harry, you know why Severus couldn’t be a witness,” Dumbledore said in a voice that implied a clear warning and disappointment.

Of course Harry knew why, “Do I, sir?” He still couldn’t stop himself pouring more salt onto a raw wound; this was so much fun.

Unlike Harry, Severus Snape was a real cop. His secret badge would be enough for Lucius to claim that two-faced man was compromised, therefore unfit to testify against Voldemort. Bullshit excuse, but Lucius was good at his job like that.

Besides, while Severus Snape might have thought he had successfully fooled the Dark Lord, Harry had already warned his lover to never completely trust a spy. Working inside your enemy’s lair could easily mess you up, and Harry knew those feelings too well. He made sure Tom understood, too.

Seriously, who would have guessed the huge downside of having a psychopath as his lover wasn't Tom being so cold or evil, but how the man constantly underestimated the power of genuinely feelings (or god forbid, love), and how they could easily destroy any loyalty built up on fear.

But Tom was smart, so no matter how stubborn the man was, Harry knew his brilliant brain could see reasons given enough time. Harry was absolutely sure there must be no proof that Snape's association with the Dark side still existed. There was no way the Order could bring a clean cop to court to testify against Voldemort.

In short, Severus Snape couldn't be used. That left only Harry.

Or Harry Evans-Black, the Dark Lord's closet subordinate and prized asset that everyone knew about.

"Do we have a deal?" Harry asked, blissfully watching the old coot’s failed attempts to keep his amiable façades.

In the end, Dumbledore reluctantly gave a heavy nod.

Chapter Text

Falling in love wasn’t in the plan, which actually didn’t exist. Planning wasn’t his forte; Harry was pretty much similar to Sirius in that regard: diving head-first into dangerous situations carelessly and then just going with the flow if there were obstacles.

That was also the reason after that first night with Voldemort, when the first thing the man said to him was “You’re mine now” with absolute conviction, Harry just rolled his eyes and went along with it. It wasn’t like his forced mission would be affected (much) just because he was sleeping with the Dark Lord. Besides, Harry was sure a man as great in bed as Voldemort would be hard to come by.

If only Harry had known then how traitorous his heart could be.

Sirius did warn him though. His godson always loved a challenge, and had a knack for attracting dangerous and dark things. The Dark Lord was nothing if not a mix-up of magnetic and charismatic vibes, exactly Harry’s type. He didn’t listen to Padfoot’s rare words of wisdom, though. Since when did Harry have a taste for narcissistic bastards? Ridiculous!

Voldemort was too much possessive, and really obsessed with dominating and owning Harry completely. He was also sadistic and heartless, despite his charming facade. And every time Voldemort held him, it was always so tight it felt like he was trying to choke Harry to death.

But riling the man up and annoying him never ceased to please Harry; Voldemort’s tolerance for his impertinent attitude was astounding, honestly. And he was really cuddly, especially after sex, though the older man would forever deny it. He was protective of Harry, and sometimes he could act like he cared, and it was touching that Voldemort valued Harry enough to try showing some emotions...

Okay fine, that man was truly his type, damn it. Who wouldn’t fall for that perfect face and fine body? Harry bet his own ass he couldn’t be the only one!

But being attracted to him was fine, why did he have to go and fall in love with the man?

Harry’s mission was really vague at first, just blending in the underworld and sometimes reporting back the needed information to the police. It was also fine if Harry failed to gain the required data, Dumbledore had said Harry’s safety was more important. Like hell it was. The boy knew that old man was just waiting for the bigger fish. So when Harry fell into bed with Voldemort, he had tried his hardest to keep it a secret from the Light side. Betray anyone else and he still had a chance at making it out alive, but stabbing Voldemort’s back? Hell, he would be lucky if that man allowed him death!

But as hard as he tried, word still got out and soon Dumbledore had caught wind of Harry’s association with the Dark Lord. It was lucky that damn opportunistic man didn’t know the complete truth of his relationship with Voldemort. But it was still enough for him to start pressuring Harry into risking his neck to acquire more highly sensitive datas, and failure wasn’t even an option anymore.

It escalated to the point Harry started finding ways to get back at Dumbledore for forcing his hand, by going behind the old man’s back to ruin his plans as much as possible. Then the more feelings Harry developed for Voldemort, the more he blatantly hampered any schemes of Dumbledore’s that he could possibly get away with. Finally, Dumbledore started to question Harry’s loyalty (like that shit existed) after he dared to interrupt an important meeting between Voldemort and Grindelwald, to drag the older man out before the bomb implanted in the room exploded.

Harry suspected that other than him, Dumbledore still had another rat hiding in the Dark side, a high rank Death Eater, or even an Inner Circle member at that, because Harry’s involvement in that attempted assassination was ordered to be kept secret from the Dark Lord himself, but Dumbledore somehow still knew of it. Harry’s gullible mask in front of Dumbledore had started to crack since then.

Yet only when Harry jumped in front of a gun to push Voldemort out of the shooting range, did he realize he had fucked up. Risking his life to save the man made Harry accept that he had fallen in love, irrevocably so. Harry guessed that was also the changing point for the older man.

The week spent getting fucked so hard he forgot his own name in Voldemort’s bedroom, they began to open up to each other. And when Harry was carried out of the room in the man’s arms with a golden locket around his neck, Harry’s heart was filled with love and so much dread.

Harry got Ron to help him unveil who was the rat in the Dark side; he suspected Pettigrew but that despicable man was so cowardly Harry doubted he would have the guts to betray Voldemort. As it turned out, his instinct was right, the true traitor was a much more respected Inner Circle. Ron’s hacking skills were one of a kind; Harry didn’t think anyone else except his best mate could unbury the file on Severus Snape in the Order’s highly secure database. Finally, Harry got a great leverage to bargain with Dumbledore, yet he didn’t got a chance to act on it.

Tom, his stupid emotional Tom, because detached Voldemort wouldn’t do something so reckless, after knowing how precious Sirius was to Harry, had wasted a great deal to break his godfather out of Azkaban. The moment Harry was held in Sirius’ arms again, and breathed in the scene of longing and finally home, he broke down. He believed both Tom and Sirius must have assumed Harry’s uncontrollable sobs were because he had missed his Padfoot too much for so long. While that was true, it was not the whole reason.

Harry had cried nonstop because he knew, deep down he knew, his time was running out. Since Sirius was free, as an escapee but still out of Dumbledore’s clutches, that old man would strike for the last time in desperation. And Harry didn’t think he would make it out unscathed.

Harry intentionally turned down all of Dumbledore’s requests to talk, and savored every moment he had left with Tom, carving his lover’s images into his memory and his heart. He also blatantly warned Voldemort about Severus Snape, and got the man to erase all evidence of Snape’s association with the Dark side. It was the last thing Harry could do to protect Tom.

Dumbledore finally managed to have a talk with Harry; he just didn’t think that old coot would do it by ambushing him in the broad daylight. He didn’t even got a chance to buy some more time before he was thrown in Azkaban (hah, the irony!) and then was secretly brought out after only one week. It seemed Albus was really desperate to finish this game.

Harry guessed in the end, he was truly selfish. He did have enough time to come clean with Voldemort after Sirius’ breakout, but Harry hadn’t once considered it. It wasn’t because he was scared of what Voldemort could do to him or Sirius; he was more terrified of losing Tom. It wasn’t an easy feat to have Voldemort open up to him, the man didn’t even trust Lucius with personal information. Yet he had gifted Harry his locket and his true name, which in turn could equal an ‘I love you’ from that psychopath. Voldemort didn’t say the word, neither would Tom, but his love for Harry was so obvious for anyone who had eyes.

It was there in the gentle caress in the morning. It was there in his crushing embraces and hungry kisses in the night. It was there in the way he looked at Harry, in his every touch.

It was there in the air around them.

It was always there.

And Harry didn’t think he could breathe if he had to watch that fierce love died in Tom’s eyes. If he wasn’t the only exception in Voldemort’s heart anymore.

That was why he had chosen to run from the man in the cruelest way, death. He preferred to die as a lover not a traitor, and be remembered as a beautiful fire not a whimpering mess. So that every memory they had shared wouldn’t be tainted with betrayals and lies.

See, Harry was just as heartless and calculating as his lover; maybe that was why they were so perfect for each other.

He had almost managed that, but Dumbledore just had to seek him out and ruin it all, again.

Harry dejectedly sighed; it wouldn’t help dwelling on the past too much. Now that he had secured Sirius’ safety from that old coot, there were only a few things left to do. Harry dialed one of the numbers he had remembered by heart and patiently waited.

“Hermione dear,” Harry started sweetly when his best friend finally picked up, “I need your help.”

It was a loooong nerve wrecking silence, before an ear-deafening scream was shouted from the other line, “Harry.Fucking.Potter!!! You Asshole!!”

Chapter Text

Being cursed to hell and back by Ron, then getting slapped by a tearful Hermione, was Harry’s welcome back from his best friends. Considering how gruesome his fake death was, Harry thought he truly deserved it. His friends even had the right to abandon him for doing such a cruel thing to them. But since they were children, trying to survive in the dark corners of London, they had vowed to always stick together. Both of them weren’t about to turn their backs on Harry now that they had just gotten him back.

They were the infamous Golden Trio, they were the poisoned youth of this cruel world, they would always be each other’s priority. But even with that knowledge, being swallowed in their familiar group hug once more, Harry still couldn’t stop crying.

After that, Harry sought out the Wolf, formerly known as Remus Lupin, the man who had been sent in Azkaban by Voldemort to help in Sirius Black’s breakout seven months ago. The Wolf was notorious for his ferocious combat skills and absolute untamable wild nature. He wasn’t one of Voldemort’s Death Eaters; the man had only agreed to help as a payback for a favor he owned the Dark Lord.

Harry knew with certainty that the man wasn’t loyal to the Dark Lord, so he could try asking for his help, to keep Sirius safe from Voldemort’s wrath when he discovered Harry’s betrayal. Harry believed convincing the man wouldn’t be so hard, considering what he had noticed the last time he saw his Padfoot. The feral Wolf was so gone over Sirius, and Harry could see that his godfather harbored just as much feeling for the forest-green-eyed man.

As Harry had predicted, after hearing his explanation, the older man immediately promised on his life he would protect Sirius at all costs, even offering Harry his protection from Voldemort's revenge if the boy ever needed it, which Harry kindly refused. It was already too dangerous for the man to go against Voldemort's command to save Sirius, and Harry couldn't ask for more.

Besides, Harry thought he did deserve all the punishments Voldemort could unleash on him. After all, the most dangerous man in England had loved Harry enough to give him the tiny piece of a heart he still had left, only for it to be thrown away like rubbish. As if that precious treasure meant nothing to Harry.

Thinking back on what he had done made his heart wail in so much regret and despair. But Harry couldn't afford to be weak now, he needed all of his courage to pull himself and his loved ones through this last battle.

Harry thought he had taken enough precautions, that he had done all he could to eliminate all possible collateral damages, so he had nothing to fear. He was dead wrong.

Because nothing could have been enough to prepare him for the moment he had to face his ex-lover in court. His infallible brave mask immediately shattered when he saw Voldemort sitting so calmly across the room.

Unlike Harry, the man's face betrayed nothing to the world when he saw his supposed dead lover being called on the stand.

However, Harry knew Voldemort so intimately to see nothing. He so wished he didn't in that moment. A flash of joy and relief passed through the older man's eyes that made Harry feel so much worse, yet those emotions were gone so fast Harry nearly thought it was only his imagination, to be replaced by raw fury.

Voldemort's unique maroon eyes turned blood red momentarily, locking Harry's emerald orbs in a storm of deep hatred and promise of pain. A sea of agony, if possible.

Harry sweated.

Chapter Text

It all started as a game.

When word got to him that the old coot had just successfully fooled another lamb in the underworld to spy on the Dark, he hadn’t paid it much thought at first. If that loony was stupid enough to trust Dumbledore of all people, surely he would be dead within a week.

Voldemort was wrong. The stupid brat survived for half a year, managed to disrupt multiple evil plans in the Dark side, and did it so sneakily that no one could trace it back to him. Impressive. But the most curious thing was, he had never once infiltrated the Death Eaters. It was as if the rat actively avoided his path, because the spying had been going on long enough for it not to be only coincidences. Voldemort just couldn’t be sure if it was his minions’ competency hindered the rat, or he actually had enough brain to know not to mess with the Dark Lord.

Didn’t matter, because finally Voldemort was interested.

His slight curiosity changed into surprise when the rat turned out so be so young. He knew the brat was young but he hadn’t thought it would be this young! Dumbledore dared to use a kid, a barely fifteen years old child, to do this deadly dangerous and dirty job for him? Voldemort was reminded he still had much to learn from his old teacher, especially on how to be properly heartless, right at that moment.

It was just his luck the brat was so beautiful, delectable. He would enjoy defiling this innocent little thing before drilling him dry for information, then getting rid of the threat this boy had been posing for far too long.

At least, that was the original plan, when lust had been clouding his brain. He completely forgot how impressed he had felt for this child's surviving skills and cunning mind just a few days ago. The Dark Lord was tricked by the naive appearance of the boy, lost deep inside his striking emerald eyes. Until the minx opened his pretty mouth to curse him, the most dangerous man in England, then lashed out at him like a wild animal.

Voldemort was kicked to awareness, literally.

He imprisoned the boy for a whole week in a dark cell for his impertinence, totally ignored the fact that he was the one who intended to get an underage drunk and statutory raped him.

He contemplated what to do with his prisoner later on, when he wasn’t having a hard libido. The Dark Lord admitted he was intrigued to know how Dumbledore had managed to persuade a Black to risk his life for the righteous cause. The boy was Sirius Black’s bastard son, even though his father was disowned and in prison now; Regulus had ignored his mother’s last wish and taken his brother’s son in. Which meant the child couldn’t have done it for money, the Black family’s wealth was second only to the Malfoys.

The child also wasn’t stupid or gullible as he had first assumed, he was headstrong and brave, stupidly so. What could Dumbledore possibly offer for his service?

As the saying goes, keep your friends close and your enemies closer; Voldemort decided to employ the brat.

That was his first step down the rabbit hole.

It all started as a game; both of them had played mind tricks on the other, danced around lies and deceits, woven in between gunpowder and blood.

Things got out of hand the second they allowed their emotions to be a part of the game.

For Voldemort, the first feeling he developed was possessiveness, and that was why he hadn’t realized he was in danger right then, because possessiveness was a familiar feeling for him, he had known it since he was a child. Harry was a mesmerising creature, beautiful and dangerous; it was no wonder he would want to own the boy. And the notion that Harry had never truly been his made the boy even more of an appealing challenge.

The Dark Lord wasn’t one to back down from challenges; if anything, they would only get him more obsessed.

Voldemort knew his fucking skills would only get him so far. He could see the damn minx after spending a whole day in the Dark Lord’s bed for his first time (and yes, he was very pleased to find out the boy was a virgin); the first thing the imp hoped for was he would lose interest. As if! He clenched his teeth and declared his claim on the brat out loud, only for Harry to give him a bored look that clearly said, ‘What did you just say? Oh, I don’t give a fuck.’ The nerve of this boy!

Voldemort decided to change his tactics. He still fucked the brat regularly, there would be no change in that.

The Dark Lord hated being weak, and showing emotions was weak. But he had learned how people like Harry functioned, especially someone as deprived of affection as his Harry. He just needed to show the boy that he could care, or pretend as much as he could. And wasn't the brat so pathetic that despite his brilliant observation skills that could pick up on him not being genuine, Harry still slowly fell for him?

Harry had been tracing inside information from his base to the old coot after he started sleeping with the Dark Lord. Yet his conscience led the boy to cause just as much, if not even more, troubles and damages to the Light side. That was Harry's way of compensation for stabbing someone who cared for him in the back.

Voldemort noticed all these little things like that, and it filled him with wicked satisfaction.

So cute.

And stupid.

Too caught up in his cruel manipulation, the heartless Dark Lord hadn’t realized his acting wasn't wholly an act anymore. He hadn't noticed that his forced tolerance for Harry had changed to fond exasperation at the boy's antics, that his eyes fucking turned soft whenever he looked into Harry's soulful green orbs.

And so many more tiny warning signs, he hadn't realized anything before it was too late.

The starling truth slapped him in the face the moment Harry jumped in front a gun to save him. His supposed dead heart actually stopped beating for a moment in horror. The Dark Lord was scared, for the life of another, and the undeniable truth hit him hard.

Later, while Voldemort’s mind was reeling on trying to find a way out of his emotional awakening, the brat just had to choose that exact moment to blurt out he was in love with the Dark Lord.

Love.

Oh how he held so much resentment over that ridiculous novelty notion.

Yet, when that particular word escaped Harry's lips, Voldemort only felt immensely satisfied. Euphoric, actually.

And an unbearable amount of anxiety.

He locked Harry up inside his bedroom for a week, desperated slamming hard inside the boy and trying to dissipate his irrational fears.

It all started as a game, until the player had gotten attached to one particular chess piece.

Chapter Text

Harry opened up to him about his past, his true past, in the dead silence of the night, after one long fucking session, when the boy was sheltered in his lover's arms.

And Voldemort realized just how blind he had been. The missing piece was always right in front of his eyes. Dumbledore hadn't bribed Harry with anything. It was emotional threat that man had used. The old coot had threatened Harry, or more likely, offered the boy a deal he couldn't refuse, all the while acting like he was doing Harry a favor.

Sirius Black. Harry's godfather. The savior who had rescued him from his nightmare of a childhood. That man was Harry's weakness.

He should have known, Harry only worked for Dumbledore after Black’s incarceration. Of course that man had to play a part in the meddling professor’s ploy.

In retrospect, he understood why he hadn't figured it out sooner. He hadn't known how truly precious Black was to Harry. He assumed the boy was kind of having a cold relationship with the man, just like himself, what with them both being the bastard sons. He had gathered the wrong information, and Regulus Black must have a hand in this, so he was misled.

The other reason was completely his own, how his contempt for feelings causing him to never once consider that maybe, Harry had someone he wanted to protect. He didn't think someone as cunning and devious as Harry was capable of sacrificing his own life for another. But hadn't Harry done just that for Voldemort?

It all started as a game, which had turned dangerous when the King desired a pawn in the opposing force, and wished to turn him into a Queen. His Queen.

The Dark Lord gifted his official lover his mother's locket and his true name. The locket was a promise to protect and a mark that Harry was his. The name Tom meant he had given the tiny piece of a dead heart, that was resurrected because of Harry, to the boy and hoped Harry would love and keep the last piece of his heart safe.

Voldemort wasn't in love with Evans-Black, but Tom Riddle was so close to loving Harry Potter. Never quite love because the Dark Lord just wasn’t equipped for that selfless and sacrificial sentiment.

He wanted to own the boy: body, mind, and soul. He wanted all of Harry to belong to him and him only.

The first step to achieve that would be freeing Harry from Dumbledore’s clutches, which meant breaking the Blacks’ disgrace out of the highest security prison in England.

Azkaban.

That place was hell on Earth, where they put away the most insane and maniacal criminals from all over the world. It was believed to be impossible to break out of Azkaban, which meant breaking in would be just as unfeasible. He needed someone with a bloody record and an unstable mind, enough to earn a cell in Azkaban without raising any suspicion. But all the Death Eaters suited for this mission were known by the Light as the Dark Lord’s best minions, and he couldn’t use his own people unless he wanted Dumbledore to take notice.

Fortunately, he had just the right person for this job, the notorious Wolf. With the Wolf’s insane and vicious nature, it wouldn’t be a problem to arrange him a place in Azkaban. In fact, the police had been dying to capture the Wolf, so Voldemort wouldn’t need to lift a finger to get what he wanted.

When he successfully gave back to Harry his dear godfather, instead of happiness like he had expected, Harry cried as though an essential part of the boy was dying. Tom was missing something in the whole picture, again. And as hard as he tried, he still couldn’t figure out what.

Harry held on to Tom so tight and let him be fucked with desperation each night after that, as though the boy anticipated some ominous winds were coming their way. The boy even went so far as to bluntly give Voldemort hints that one of his best Inner Circle members was a traitor. It was like Harry was afraid he didn’t have much time left with Tom.

Ridiculous, Tom had thought, there was no way he would allow anyone a chance to take Harry away.

Then suddenly his lover got captured by Dumbledore. The old coot with his Order of flaming chickens was vicious, struck down any proofs of innocence Lucius could claim on Harry’s behalf. For the first time in his unfailing career as an attorney, Lucius had lost a case. Harry Evans-Black's case.

Voldemort silently listened, burning up with fury inside, when the judge announced a life sentence in Azkaban for the crimes Evans-Black had committed. The Dark Lord could taste the blatant mocking from the Order in that verdict, and he vowed to get Harry out of that hell. He had done it once, he could do it again.

He didn't have that chance.

Tom Riddle had always thought his mother was weak, dying from emotional pain of an unrequited love. He couldn't fathom it, just how much hurt had she felt for her to give up on life and abandon him?

He understood on the day they told him Harry was dead.

Tom didn't love the boy, or not as much as Merope had loved Tom Riddle Sr. And still, he could feel like his soul had been ripped apart, swallowed in an immense amount of pain, so that even breathing hurt too much.

The feeling of loss was unbearable, to think he would never get another chance to touch his lover's warm body, to look deep into Harry's blazing soul through those emerald eyes. His shredded soul would never feel the same contentment and gratification of being loved so freely and fiercely by someone as loyal and brave as his Harry.

Tom didn't love Harry, and he had already felt like wishing for death to end the pain. How could his mother have endured all this until she gave birth to Tom, when she had already lost herself in loving his father and losing that man? Tom only endured losing Harry for a moment and he was terrified.

Then the smirking cop reported the attacker responsible for Harry's death was Grindelwald's men, and Voldemort's rational instincts immediately took over his brain.

Then he got his hands on the intact golden locket despite its owner's destroyed body, and Voldemort knew with certainty that this was a fucking trap from Dumbledore.

The old coot was baiting for a war between Voldemort and Grindelwald, and Harry was his sacrificial lamb.

The wrath boiled up when he recognized Dumbledore's plan had also cleared off the pain that had clouded his brain.

The Dark Lord knew his lover; Harry was sneaky and clever. The brat had worked for the old coot for years; he had to know many dirty secrets and trickeries Dumbledore liked to use, and had already planned out multiple escape routes in case the old fool wanted to sacrifice him. There was no way Dumbledore would be able, or dared, to eliminate Harry that easily.

But why did Harry agree to participate in the old man's scheme this time? The boy had said he loved Tom, hadn't he? Didn't loving someone mean that you would never do them harm?

Dumbledore didn't have Black in his hands to threaten Harry anymore; why did Harry allow his capture and fake his own death?

Maybe the brat didn't love you, somewhere deep and dark inside his core a vicious voice whispered. Maybe now that the brat's precious godfather was finally free, he would also want to escape from the Dark Lord's possessive hold.

No, Tom screamed inside his head. Even though he didn’t know love, Tom still believed Harry's affections for him were genuine. Or he wanted to believe so.

All of these speculations and doubts would lead him nowhere; his Harry wasn't here for him to demand an answer. He needed the boy back, but how?

It all started as a game, until he realized it was no longer just a harmless game.

Voldemort pretended to fall right into Dumbledore's trap, letting Severus, the traitor, leak much highly sensitive information back to the Light side and leaving behind his crimes as many loopholes as possible.

The Dark Lord let himself get caught, but the police would later realize all their proofs and witnesses were useless. The Light would see a chance like this was too rare to waste, and Dumbledore would seek out Harry's help again.

This was the most dangerous and foolish thing Voldemort had ever done, because Harry was probably the only one who could bring Voldemort down with his privy knowledge of the Dark Lord's crimes.

What would Harry choose? Would the boy run back to him and confess everything, not wanting to betray him once more?

Or would the boy take this chance to destroy him? Proving Tom meant nothing to the boy, and his love had never been true.

It all started as a game, until one day he had realized he wasn't the powerful player. He was just another chess piece even if he was the King, and could do nothing but wait for his fate.

Voldemort had patiently waited, and waited. For Harry to come back. To choose him. He even got scared, thinking what if Harry was truly dead. He didn’t want to consider that option, but the other one was just as agonizing to contemplate.

The Dark Lord got his answer on the day of the trial.

Harry had chosen to be the key witness.

Apparently love meant nothing, it wasn't all powerful and invincible as they had said. It seemed love would always be his downfall, Tom whimpered, despairing and wounded.

That assumed the brat did love you, which I do not believe, Voldemort cruelly reminded his other self. Pathetic, he bitterly added.

It all started as a game; he hadn't known the consequence would be this real and devastating.

Chapter Text

"I swear by Almighty God that the evidence I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Harry solemnly swore, resting his right hand on the Holy Bible, before taking a deep breath and turning around to face the courtroom's attendants.

The prosecutor, an ugly woman in a hideous pink sweater, had Harry wondering just how tight the Light side's budget was. That woman looked like a toad compared to the distinguished Lucius Malfoy. Was the Light side so confident they couldn't loose, or just so stupid as to underestimate Lucius' competency?

The blond man was eyeing Harry warily, knowing just how many secrets and how much dirt his Lord's lover had on their crime empire, and probably trying to come up with some ways to discredit Harry before he had a chance to speak.

Harry beat him to it, "I apologize in advance for causing any trouble, but I can not testify against the defendant."

Everyone abruptly turned to stare at the green-eyed man, and even Lucius' infallible composure was briefly dropped in shock. Only Voldemort appeared to be as unaffected as ever; his charming face was completely guarded.

"Have you been threatened?" The prosecutor softly asked in her sickly sweet voice, after she had recovered from the shock, suspiciously glancing at Lucius.

"No," Harry firmly denied, then averted his gaze to the old man wearing a pair of half-moon spectacles. His green eyes turned ablaze in loathing for years of being used against his will, and determination for revenge, "In fact, I had told Special Agent Dumbledore about my inability to testify, repeatedly. Yet he refused to listen. It seemed to me the agent held some sort of hidden motives, or personal grudges against the defendant."

"Objection, your Honor!" The pink toad instantly snapped.

"Objection accepted," The steely-looking judge with her grey hair tied back in a bun smoothly acquiesced. She turned to remind Harry sternly, though not unkindly, "Your previous accusation will be struck from the record. We need you to give the truth, not make speculation, Mister."

Harry easily nodded in agreement.

"Do you know the defendant, Mr. Evans-Black?" The way that pink toad sneered at his surname showing she believed he was lying on the stand, as well as reminding the jury of his criminal records.

Low blow. She was so going to lose this.

"I do," Harry replied truthfully instead, and gave a nonthreatening smile. "In fact, I know him quite intimately," he unnecessarily added.

"So you personally know the defendant," she immediately reaffirmed the crucial point, "But you can not testify. Care to give us an explanation?" The toad politely demanded, at the same time looking like she was so ready to shred apart any excuses he could give.

Harry leaned forward and spoke clearly for everyone to hear, "Because he’s my husband."

The entire courtroom erupted in chaos, Dumbledore looked positively concerned now. Yet all of Harry's attention was pulled to whom his heart yearned for.

Voldemort’s scarlet eyes were piercing into Harry’s emerald orbs, searching deep in his soul. After an intense scrutiny, the Dark Lord triumphantly smirked and leaned back onto his chair, his previous cold and collected demeanor vanished. Lord Voldemort looked totally at ease; combined with his impeccable suit and striking appearance, he looked like a God lounging on his throne.

Still, Harry recognized this facade of his ex-lover; this was only the calm before a storm. This was the ravenous predator in repose, patiently waiting for the right moment to pounce and tear apart his prey. His crimson eyes stalked Harry’s every movement, raging fury hidden in between a kaleidoscope of red.

Voldemort was furious. He was furious at Harry.

“I demand a marriage certificate, your Honor,” The prosecutor viciously snapped at Harry, startling the boy and cutting off the staring contest between him and Voldemort. Green eyes quickly exchanged a meaningful look with Lucius’ grey ones for a second, before looking back at the angry toad.

Finally the blond man caught on, “Pardon me, I didn’t expect my client’s dead husband to be the key witness,” was Lucius’ pleasant reply, “It will only take a moment to retrieve and bring that certificate here. May I suggest a recess until then?”

The pink toad glared daggers at Malfoy, “Isn’t it suspicious that he has to ask for–”

Lucius instantly fired back, “You should be grateful I didn’t demand for adjournment, Ms. Umbridge. Because at this point it seems you have no case against my client; neither is a concrete proof. And once I submit this document, you will have nothing but speculation.”

Umbridge’s face turned red in anger, but the judge decided to cut in before the two lawyers could start a fight, “One hour, Mr. Malfoy. And I expect a legally certified marriage license.”

“Of course, your Honor,” Lucius confidently responded.

Damn, Harry thought, lying with a straight face must be a prerequisite skill for all Inner Circle members.

“Recess for one hour, everyone,” the judge loudly announced as she banged her gavel.

Chapter Text

“Harry,” Sirius suddenly jumped on him when the boy was waiting outside the courtroom; the trial had begun again inside when Harry decided to sneak out. “How dare you, Harry! How dare you?!” The man hugged his godson close, as if he was afraid Harry would be dragged away from him again if he didn’t hold on tight enough.

“Padfoot,” Harry choked, then looking behind Sirius’ back to see the forest-green-eyed man and his two friends standing just a few steps away. The Wolf gave Harry an apologetic look.

“Sorry, he eavesdropped on those kids talking about you at the trial,” he gestured at Harry’s two friends, and they winced. “And rushed here. I couldn’t hold him back.”

Harry turned to look at Hermione and Ron in exasperation, before he asked the bushy brown haired girl, “At least tell me you managed to hand that license to Lucius. The man seemed to know nothing at first, but then he recovered so fast I couldn’t be sure.”

Hermione nodded, “I couldn’t get near the Malfoy patriarch unnoticed, as you had given us a command to keep our Golden Trio’s identities hidden, so I decided to have Regulus handle it.” She smiled, pleased with herself.

Harry groaned, “And I assumed you only thought of Regulus at the last minute, right? Now I know why Lucius had to ask for a recess.”

“Don’t worry, mate,” the redhead boy reassured him. “Regulus had the document since yesterday. Knowing the man, I’m sure he probably just thinks a chance to witness Malfoy caught off guard too precious to pass, but he must have given those papers to Malfoy by now.”

Harry sighed, still swallowed in Sirius’ arms. The boy rubbed his godfather’s back soothingly and whispered softly, “Padfoot, I’m here. Your Prongslet is here, I’m not going anywhere. I promise.”

Sirius winced pathetically, “Liar. You dared to die on me. Do you know how much it hurt when I heard the news?”

Harry’s eyes got misty at the broken voice of his godfather, “That was my fault, I’m so sorry...”

“No,” Sirius suddenly cut in, shaking his head and hugging him tighter. It hurt but Harry wasn’t about to complain, “It isn’t your fault, it’s mine. If I hadn’t gotten caught, you wouldn’t be in this mess right now. I’m such a failure, I failed your parents and then I failed you. They said I was insane, and took you away from me. They said I brought only bad luck; maybe they were right. I only got you in danger, I shouldn’t have come near you...”

“Sirius! That’s enough!” Harry snapped to cut off the man’s self-blame nonsense. Sirius’s mind wasn’t stable, everyone knew that. It was the aftermath of long exposure to emotional abuse and neglect from his own mother. That vile woman was also the one who broke the brotherly connection between Sirius and his younger brother for years. And after the murders of Harry’s parents, Sirius had fallen into depression. Dumbledore used his mental illnesses as an excuse to claim his godfather was unqualified to take care of a baby and snatched Harry away.

It took seven years for Sirius to find Harry again. But when the man got caught, the trial and five years in Azkaban had once again damaged Sirius’s frail mental stability and self-worth.

The only good thing that came out of that tragedy was the chance for Sirius’ reconciliation with Regulus.

“Don’t listen to them. Don’t you ever listen to them.” Harry intently looked into his godfather’s silver eyes, “You saved me, Padfoot. Without you, I would have been dead,” Sirius opened his mouth to argue but Harry wouldn’t let him. “No, you didn’t drag me into danger or damage me. You taught me how to survive, how to protect the ones my heart holds dear. You’re the reason I live, you’re my will to fight. You got it?” Harry desperately questioned, hoping Sirius would stop blaming himself.

The older man nodded after a while, hiding his face in the crook of Harry’s neck. The boy sighed in relief.

“I think the trial is about to finish soon,” the Wolf’s concerned voice brought Harry back to reality.

“Oh shit! Padfoot, you need to go right now,” Harry said, trying to get his godfather off his body. The other man only held on tighter.

“No, I won’t leave you in Voldemort’s hands. That man would kill you!”

“I assure you he won’t kill me,” Death was actually his most merciful punishment, Harry didn’t say that last part out loud.

“No! Come with us, we can protect you.” Sirius begged.

You can’t, was Harry’s almost reply, instead he said, “No, I have to face Voldemort, and I need you to be safe. For me.”

“Why?” Sirius demanded, still not letting go easily.

“Because,” Harry took a deep breath, “I love him, Padfoot. And no matter what reasons, still I have betrayed him. I’m the one in the wrong this time, and you know I refuse to run from my mistakes. I won’t be able to live with myself if I do it now. Please, Padfoot.” Harry desperately begged.

It took a long time with more pleas and promises to contact the man as soon as he could, before Sirius reluctantly relented and allowed himself to be dragged away by his Moony. The other two of the Golden Trio remained behind, though.

“Oh god, not you guys too.” Harry groaned.

Ron just shrugged, “Nah, mate. I know a lost cause when I see one. You’re hopeless, and I won’t try to convince you otherwise. It’s just...” The redhead hesitated then, “You tell him, ‘Mione.”

“Harry,” Brown eyes looked at him with obvious worry, “I discovered something while looking through the Dark Lord’s case. Actually, there wasn’t anything glaringly wrong no matter how many times I examined it. But my guts keep telling me something is off.”

“Like what?” Harry furrowed his brow.

“Have you ever thought this was all just a setup?” Hermione whispered, “Have you ever suspected the Dark Lord already knew you were a spy before your betrayal? And he had allowed himself to be caught because he knew Dumbledore would bring you back?”

Harry was speechless, and even though he wanted to laugh and say impossible, he couldn’t. “But... how could he be sure I was alive? Don’t you think it was too risky putting himself in this much danger? And for what? For Dumbledore to bring back a spy with enough knowledge about his crimes to destroy his empire?” Harry asked deliriously, more to convince himself than anything.

“I don’t know, that’s where I can’t figure it out,” Hermione dejectedly admitted, frustration clear in her voice.

Chapter Text

Harry stood outside of the courtroom alone, lost deep in thoughts. Hermione and Ron had finally left a while ago, after dropping that dreadful speculation on him; Harry quietly groaned.

Did Tom know? Now that he really thought about it, it seemed very likely. All the suspicious signs were so painfully obvious, how could he have missed them? Harry heaved a deep sigh, or maybe he did see it, he just refused to acknowledge the truth. Because if he did, it would just lead to so many more questions, and might break the illusion of love and trust between them.

Harry had hoped they wouldn’t come to that point, when all lies were unveiled and masks ripped off, leaving both of them bare to tear the other apart. He had chosen the cowardly way out because he was so scared of this outcome, but as it always was in his life, Fate had been against him once more.

The imposing double doors of the courtroom suddenly opened, startling Harry out of his depressed musing. The trial ended? Damn it, he was so not yet ready to face Voldemort!

Lucius Malfoy was the first to walk out and Harry immediately tried to catch the blond’s eyes, silently asking how the trial went, even though he completely had trust in the man’s cunning skills. The blond kept an impassive face when he saw Harry, but the corner of his mouth barely twitched into some sort of a grateful smile, albeit reluctantly. Relief washed over Harry in waves; they won.

Then green eyes unconsciously turned to search for a pair of familiar maroon orbs, and his breath caught when he realized they were already watching him. Was that affection on Voldemort’s face? Harry could not believe what he was seeing, and where did those damn soft looks come from? The older man smiled, so gently and lovingly at Harry, before he gracefully walked over to where his lover (or fake husband) stood, stunned in shock.

Harry shuddered, and almost took a step back when Voldemort reached for him, but did nothing as his ex-lover pulled him into a tight hug, so tight Harry could feel his bones screaming. For a moment, Harry was lost and confused in the warmth and sense of safety blooming from Voldemort’s intimate embrace. Until flashes from the cameras around taking pictures of them pulled him back to reality.

Oh, right! Harry understood then, heart suddenly filled with disappointment and sorrow. This was just an act for the press. Harry had announced they were married after all. Of course Voldemort couldn’t just grab Harry and drag him away without showing some sort of emotional reunion with his supposed dead husband first.

What was he thinking? Harry mentally cursed his foolish heart.

But despite all that, Harry still couldn’t help savoring this moment, and tentatively wormed his arms around the older man’s waist. This might be the last chance he would get to touch this dangerous man. With that in mind, Harry shamelessly buried his face in the crook between the Dark Lord’s neck and shoulder, and greedily breathed in the heady and unique scent of his Tom.

Harry thought he heard Voldemort let out a shuddering breath and tighten his hold on him a little bit more. Or maybe it was only his imagination.

~*~

Voldemort took Harry back to his private manor, much to the boy’s surprise. Upon arriving, he found out all of the Dark Lord’s most trusted minions were waiting for them. Some of the Inner Circles kept sneaking worried glances at Harry, which meant nearly all of them. Those elite members was close to Harry, and despite the brat’s sassy attitude had genuinely grown fond of him.

Others, along with some high level Death Eaters, kept their faces stoic and their eyes trained on their Lord. Bellatrix Black was the only one who openly sneered at Harry with murderous intent, probably hoping her Lord would grant her the honor of disposing of the traitor. Still, she was smart enough to keep her mouth shut. Evans-Black was once Voldemort’s lover, and they hadn’t forgotten the horrible fate befallen on those who had dared to lay a hand on their Lord’s precious possession.

Voldemort had not spoken his mind on the matter regarding Evans-Black yet, so they all wisely chose to keep their silence while waiting for the Dark Lord’s explicit command. Much to their relief, though some were confused and disappointed, the Dark Lord just ordered them all to leave.

There were only Harry and Voldemort left inside the older man’s office, sitting across from each other on the couch. The man’s crimson eyes bored deep into Harry’s while the younger one tried his best not to squirm under his intense gaze. After a long stretch of silence, when Harry was about to be melted from the blazing fire inside those red orbs, Voldemort decided to speak.

“In the years I have known you, this may be the first time you could keep that pretty mouth of yours closed for this long,” he blandly commented, though the voice was laced with venom. “Speak, I’m feeling much lenient today. Let us try hearing your excuses.”

Harry’s eyes narrowed, hearing the obvious mocking in Voldemort’s tone and internally sighed; he really didn’t want to play tricks with this man again. “I’m sure with your brilliance you will see through all of my pathetic excuses,” Harry smoothly replied. He couldn’t hold back his cheek even if his life depended on it. “I have nothing to explain, my Lord.”

The waves of anger aimed at Harry got intensified tenfold for a moment and the boy nearly choked on his breath, before Voldemort reined his emotions back under control. “My Lord? How respectful.” His voice turned even colder and deadlier, and Harry couldn’t understand why. True, he had stopped using that title when he became the man’s lover, and to call him that again could be interpreted as Harry cutting off their past relationship, but he really didn’t think he still had the right to call him Voldemort, or god forbid, Tom.

“You don’t have anything to explain, dare I assume you’ll have nothing against your punishment?” Voldemort smirked cruelly, seeing trepidation grow in Harry’s slightly widened eyes, “It would be a shame to damage that delicious body of yours, so how about I take my revenge on your beloved godfather?”

“NO!” Harry immediately shouted without thinking, and before he could make out what happened next he was already pinned against the couch, Voldemort’s right hand clenched tightly around his throat.

“No?” The other man leaned closer; his face came too close for the smaller boy’s comfort. “You really think you still have a say in what I want to do?” He snarled.

Tears welled up in the corners of Harry’s eyes, from both the dread and the lack of air. He wrapped his hand around the man’s right wrist, not to pull away, only to have something to hold on.

“Please...” he wheezed out and tried to beg, “Do whatever you want to me... Don’t... don’t hurt Padfoot.” Voldemort tightened his grip on the slender throat for a moment before he suddenly pulled away, leaving Harry coughing and gasping for air.

When Harry had regained his breathing, he spotted inside Voldemort’s hand a familiar golden locket that hadn’t been there before, and felt a pang in his heart. The Slytherin locket.

“I see that you still recognize this little thing. After all, you had to have gone through many troubles to keep it intact from that old fool, hadn’t you?” It wasn’t a question, it was a statement. “Do you remember what you had vowed when I gave you this?”

He did. How could he not? Looking straight into those raging red orbs, Harry repeated the words he had sworn years ago, “If ever death comes to me, it will be by your hands only.”

It might sound awful and ominous, but Harry knew Tom could hear his hidden promise, that Harry would always stand by his side, that he wouldn’t allow even death to separate them, that Harry’s everything belonged to Voldemort, even in his life and death.

“You betrayed my trust,” Voldemort stated slowly, “Tell me, had you planned on breaking your own words right then?”

Harry shook his head then lowered his eyes, “No, believe me.”

Voldemort’s cold hand reached over and gently rubbed Harry’s cheek, before sharply gripping the boy’s chin and forcing him to look up into unforgiving eyes, “Believe you? But I have never believed you, foolish boy.”

The agony in his heart amplified with those few words, making it nearly unbearable for Harry to hold the other man’s cruel gaze without breaking, “You knew,” Harry whispered, “You knew I was a spy.” It wasn’t a question and according to Voldemort’s silence, he was right. “Since when?” He needed to know, what if…

“Right from the moment I first met you.” Voldemort replied nonchalantly, watching the boy shattered in front of his eyes, and much to his irritation found no pleasure in it.

“You tricked me.” Harry said tiredly, finally connecting all the dots and accepting the truth. Then he asked with a broken voice, quivering from so much aching. “Was it all a game to you? All that affection, the trust and privileges, had always been a trap?”

Despite the growing of something uncomfortable inside his chest, Voldemort still chose the most hurtful reply to answer, “Yes.” But it was true, he argued mentally when regrets immediately filled up in him.

Harry cried; heartbreaking tears fell freely from verdant eyes, once so vivid now turned dull. Harry reached for the locket, and Voldemort found himself unconsciously allowing the boy to take it from him. The pitiful brat held the locket close to his heart, as though it somehow could reduce the immense amount of anguish he was feeling.

“You want to know why I broke my vow?” Harry said with a small voice, void of emotion; and Voldemort found his supposedly dead heart ached. “It wasn’t because of Padfoot, as you must have assumed. I could have fooled to Dumbledore that I had betrayed you for him, but if you believed that then you had thought so highly of me, dear.”

Why then?” Voldemort pressed, not realizing he was holding his breath, anticipation and something that felt like hope starting to infect his traitorous heart once more. “Tell me.”

“Because I thought you were truly mine.” Harry chuckled humorlessly, “I was such a coward, I’d rather choose death knowing I still have your heart somehow, than come clean to you and lose you completely. I know how you despise traitors; what if you can’t see through all the lies and tricks I had played as Dumbledore’s obedient puppet to see that my love for you is real?” Harry sobbed. “I didn’t think of Padfoot, I only thought of myself. Love was as terrifying as they all said. For the first time in my whole life, I chose to be selfish, and I guess this is my punishment. How could I lose you when you have never been mine?”

Voldemort surged forward, captured Harry’s lips in a fierce kiss, hungry and demanding. The smaller boy was shocked still and couldn’t respond at first, until his tongue poking at his mouth asking for entrance kicked Harry out of his stupor. The kiss was desperate, as though they wanted to suck out and devour each other’s soul, and only when the need for air became a necessity did they part.

Harry breathed heavily, still clutching the locket tight in his hand, and appeared adorably confused. Voldemort leaned closer, evil smooth voice caressing against the boy’s ear like velvet, “It had started as a game, but you insufferable imp just had to go and make it real.”

Harry’s eyes widened and he turned to look at the other man in disbelief. That statement was impossibly close to admitting to be in love with him! Their eyes locked, emerald stared deep into maroon, and when did Voldemort’s eyes revert back to this warm dark colors of wine mixed with chocolate? So captivating and dangerous.

“Really?” Harry asked in small voice, barely above a whisper.

Voldermort saw flickers of fear and hurt still evident in the boy’s beautiful orbs. The urges to hurt and let out all the anger he had had to endure were still lingering, but somehow he didn’t want to unleash the ugly monster inside him on Harry again. Is this what people call love? That no matter how angry or hurt you were, you could take no pleasure in seeing the one holding your heart in pain.

He hated this feeling, and Tom knew he would hate it for the rest of his life. But Tom couldn’t hate Harry. He just couldn’t let go of his heart, not after how much pain he had to suffered to get it back in his hand.

“Harry,” Tom locked eyes with Harry’s, like he was looking straight into his soul, “You’re mine, in every sense of that word. I couldn’t hurt myself.” He leaned down to kiss away the tears that had fallen from those shining emerald gems. “But this chance will be one time only. Harry, the next time you back-stab me, I’ll make sure to burn the last remain of my heart, you, to ashes. I don’t like to have a heart that I can not control.”

Harry nodded and hugged Tom tightly; finally he was allowed to hold the man he loved once more. “I’m really sorry,” Harry whispered in the crook of Tom’s neck. “I won’t ever run from you again,” he swore.

Tom sighed deeply, held his smaller lover just as close, and inhaled in the boy’s familiar scent, “I’m still mad at you.”

Harry laughed, “Of course you are.” The boy nodded toward the bedroom’s grand door and said in a suggestive tone, “Do you want to properly punish me?”

Tom raised an elegant eyebrow, “Still as horny and tactless as ever, I see.” He remarked teasingly, even when his arms already wrapped around Harry’s torso and easily picked the boy up.

Harry laughed, “Don’t be a dick. You know you miss me too.” He pulled Tom down with him when he was dropped unceremoniously on the bed to share another heated kiss. “I love you,” Harry whispered softly when they pulled apart.

Tom pinned Harry on the bed and smiled, a real and gentle smile that only Harry had seen before, and would always remain just for him, “I know.” Tom said slowly, “I believe you.”

He didn’t say those words back, and probably never would. But Harry knew he could always find what he had been yearning for his whole life in Tom’s eyes. Harry didn’t know when, but he was pretty sure the first thing that had drawn him to Voldemort was his alluring maroon orbs. They always burnt so passionately, and even though Harry had known then it was near impossible for a man like Voldemort to feel love, he still couldn’t help himself falling.

And because those expressive eyes could hide nothing, he didn’t need Tom’s words to feel it. People with eyes like his loved with possessive desperation, and Harry would need to be blind to not see the blazing affection sizzling in them.

Most people would judge his life choices, but Harry knew right now he was happy, even if it was inside the Devil’s arms. For once, he felt truly and completely contented, and Harry wouldn’t allow anything or anyone to steal what was rightfully his again.

No matter what.

 

End.

Chapter Text

Growing up in the world of criminals and murderers wasn’t the kindest fate for any child. Sometimes, it helped if you were born into that life, not being forced into it. Only sometimes. However, if you were the heir to one of the most wealthy and dangerous Dark families, then there would be plenty of help to get you smoothly adapted to a life full of treacheries and deceptions.

Yet again, that kind of privilege wasn’t available for every little heir; there were some cases in which being born as the future heir only cost all the dearest things you’d ever had in life.

Among many notorious Dark families, the Gaunts and the Blacks offered the most colorful examples in how they had merrily destroyed their own bloodline.

The Gaunts ended themselves with the rise of the most brilliant and merciless Dark Lords that the underworld ever had. Lord Voldemort celebrated the dawn of his reign by publicly murdering the few remaining relatives he had on his maternal side. Nobody knew what kind of horrible fate had befallen his father’s family; the only certain fact people heard of was that they all ended up dead.

In comparison with the Gaunts, the Blacks was relatively more fortunate; at least they hadn’t been wiped out yet. The family’s darkest time might have started the day Walburga Black abandoned her eldest son and forced upon her second child the expectation of being the future heir.

Sirius and Regulus used to be so close before that fateful day. They had grown up together, having only each other to rely on because their parents were always either too busy to take care of them, or spent time fighting and keeping a marriage made not in love but by duty. Nobody knew exactly when Walburga began to turn from neglect to outright abuse, both physical and emotional, of her eldest child, until Sirius was completely broken under her merciless mistreatment.

Regulus, on the other hand, was subjected to a totally different kind of torture from his mother. He was forced to become the flawless son who could make Walburga proud. Everything Regulus did had to be perfect; he wasn’t allowed to slip because even the tiniest mistake could bring down unjust punishment for his dear brother. The strain their mother put upon them tore the two brothers apart, slowly and irrevocably.

The day Sirius’ best friend and also cousin brought his parents to their home, and forcefully took his brother away from their crazy mother was both the most beautiful and heartbreaking moment in Regulus’ life. He had felt so relieved when Sirius was rescued, but along with it was the sickening realization that he was left all alone with his abusive mother. Nobody had come to save him, for they could not see the damage Walburga had been inflicting on her second son.

Sirius Black wished he could turn back many moments in his life, but the day the Potters abandoned his helpless brother was the one he regretted the most. He couldn’t blame James’ parents for not saving Regulus, for they didn’t know the torment being inflicted on Reggie was the kind of damage leaving no visible scars. But even if they knew, the Potters still weren’t powerful enough to go against Walburga Black and take away both her sons.

Regulus Black, against all odds, survived and grew up into the prefect son that his mother had wanted to shape out of him. And maybe Regulus could have kept going like that, if he hadn’t fallen in love with the wrong person. He had fallen for a man, the eldest son of the Lestranges’ family, Roldolphus. Love had bloomed between them since the moment they first met in the schoolyard. It was the purest kind of love that you could feel only once in your life, too innocent and yet so strong. Their secret love was also what helped keep Regulus’ mind from shattering completely under Walburga’s cold hands.

They were too young and foolish back then, for daring to believe they could defeat the world with their love; being completely wrapped up in each other’s arms had made them blind to all the threats nearby. They had planned to elope on Regulus’s graduation day, which should have started the happiest time of their life, only for it being turned into a nightmare that haunted them for years later.

They were betrayed, their secret love and plan to run away were exposed to the Head of Black house by their closest friend, Bellatrix Black.

Regulus was captured and subjected to the beating of his life under his father’s command: a punishment for bringing shame upon their family. He was held prisoner inside his home for two long weeks and would have been locked up much longer if his older lover hadn’t sacrificed his own future to save him.

Bellatrix had informed Roldolphus in great details about his young lover’s fate, beaten up and left starving to death in his own room; and he was devastated. Roldolphus had to get on his knees, begging Regulus’s cruel parents to have mercy on their son; but Walburga had taken that opportunity to demand that he marry Bellatrix as the price for Regulus’ freedom. As the future heir of his family, a marriage between Rodolphus and Bellatrix would secure the Lestranges’ permanent support to the Blacks.

Regulus was finally given medical care on the day his lover was getting married to his cousin, his once closest friend, the traitor who had stolen his only chance at happiness. Regulus wished he could have died, but all he could do was cry until all his tears had drained out.

Regulus wasn’t the same foolish boy after he was released from the hospital. His kind heart was drowning in resentment and bitterness; he smiled no more and he wanted revenge.

Regulus waited patiently for three years until he successfully tripped his father out of the way and become the new Lord of Black House. The freshly appointed Lord Black’s first order was to lock up his crazy mom in an asylum for good; then he fired a bullet straight into his father’s head with no apparent warning when the man opened his foul mouth to curse him. No one dared to breathe a wrong word in the young man’s direction after that.

Later, when all was said and done, Regulus Black lay down on his huge bed all alone in a cold mansion and cried again. He mourned for the innocence he had had to give up and the love he couldn’t take back. He cried until he fell asleep in his own tears, while loneliness kept festering at the hollow inside his heart.

Regulus woke up to no other than Rodolphus Lestrange, hovering awkwardly by his bed with worry and love swelling inside those familiar honey eyes that he hadn’t seen for so long.

Chapter Text

When Lord Voldemort made his name known in the criminal world, Regulus Black was among the first people who swore loyalty to the man. Under his Lord’s ruthless reign, the Blacks had once again prospered to be one of the most powerful families, second only to the Malfoys.

It had been years since the day Sirius was rescued and had walked out of his life. His brother had completely gone off the radar when Regulus finally took control of the family. And yes, he did try to track down Sirius but no matter how much effort he had put into searching, no trace of his brother was found.

Until out the blue his brother suddenly came back, asking for help. Sirius Black had gotten into serious trouble, and he knew in no time the police would come for him. He wasn’t afraid of having to go jail or even being sentenced to death for his crimes, but he was worried of leaving his godson behind.

To be honest, in the beginning Regulus was more than a little jealous of the bond between his brother and the boy Sirius had risked everything to protect. He took the kid in and promptly changed the boy’s identity to protect him better. After that was done, he turned all resources into getting Sirius out of jail, only to discover someone else was hellbent on making sure his brother would be given a death sentence. Regulus desperately pleaded for a lesser verdict when he realized he couldn’t pull Sirius out of this disaster without having to spend any time behind the bars.

He tried to keep Harry in his house because he knew whoever their hidden enemies were, they were fucking dangerous. Regulus was worried about what could happen to Harry if they ever got their hands on the boy. Yet, no matter how much security he put on retaining the kid, Harry kept tricking his way out and running back to Sirius’ side. Regulus was at his wits’ end trying to balance between looking after a damn stubborn child and saving his brother.

He was desperate enough to turn to Lucius Malfoy asking for help; despite his haughty attitude, Malfoy was really competent in his field. Lucius almost turned him down but with one glare from his lovely wife, “Thank so much ‘Cissy!”, he had agreed to help — even though he refused to be Sirius’ lawyer.

But in the end, they still lost. And his brother was sentenced to death as he had feared.

That night, when Regulus found Harry sitting alone on his rooftop looking like the boy was seconds away from jumping, he couldn’t help it anymore. Regulus didn’t remember much what he had said in anger, he only knew he had yelled and screamed many hurtful words at the poor kid.

He also discovered Harry was actually more mature than he had assumed when the child just looked at him with sad understanding eyes and gently offered, “He loves you just as much, you know?” And Regulus knew without asking who Harry was talking about, “He had collected every news he could find about you, anywhere we went. You’re always his little brother, and he missed you dearly, everyday. Never doubt that.”

And Regulus fucking broke down in front of a kid, who he supposed he should have been the one giving comfort to. Instead, Harry hugged him tight and let Regulus cry his heart out on the boy’s small shoulder. He thought he might have heard Harry whisper softly before he drifted off, “I’m sorry for keeping Padfoot away from you for too long. Don’t worry, I’ll save him. For both of us, Uncle Reggie.”

He woke up on his bed with Harry curled up next to his side. Regulus took the chance to get a closer look at his brother’s precious godson, and felt like he had just really seen Harry for the first time. This kid had endured many hardships and seen too much darkness for his age; and he cared for Sirius just as deeply as he did. His brother was more than just a father figure for Harry. And Regulus understood why Sirius had been so willing to risk his life for this boy.

Because protecting this innocent child must have felt like salvation for you, didn’t it, brother?

Regulus thought maybe he wanted to be saved too.

“Morning,” Harry murmured. The boy had woken up when Regulus was lost in his own thoughts, and he ran his hand through the kid’s silky black hair in response.

“Morning. Sorry about last night, I have a bad habit of falling asleep while crying,” Regulus was so embarrassed about his loss of control but Harry only smiled softly at him. “How did you get me down from up there anyway?”

“I didn’t. After you fell asleep on me, I had half a mind to just leave you there,” Harry teased easily and Regulus found he was getting fonder of the kid when he was more open like this, “A man came by to visit you; he helped me get you down and bring you in here.” He paused to take a look around before he continued, “Actually, he had said he would stay until you woke up to make sure you’re feeling alright...”

Ah, Rodolphus... He must have been worried for me after hearing the news about Sirius. “Don’t worry. I overslept my usual schedule and he has a very important meeting this morning. He’ll come back in the afternoon, I’m sure.”

“Who is him anyway? Is he your lover? I saw how much he cares for you last night when he was putting you to bed,” Harry looked at him with a questioning look shining in his green eyes.

“He’s not my lover. We’re... a bit complicated,” Regulus sighed and went on when he saw Harry open his mouth again, “It’s none of your business, kid. We should get up, I need to start appealing against Sirius’ conviction soon.”

“Yes, Uncle Reggie.” The boy smiled sadly, getting up and walking out of the room before Regulus had enough time to process his words.

“Wait, did that boy just call me...” He choked.

=====

Many years later 

“Uncle Reggie, it’s been years and you still haven’t told me why you waited so long before taking back Rodolphus from Bellatrix,” the young man pouted as if he was still a fifteen-years-old kid and Regulus laughed.

Harry patiently waited until the man’s glee died out, looking pointedly at him all the while. “Oh my, I haven’t had a laugh that good in so long,” he wheezed out and coughed a bit, “Tell me, Harry, have you ever wondered why Bellatrix couldn’t bear any child after so many years of marriage?”

Harry made a face, “Of course I had wondered, but I only guessed maybe there was some problem in her body...” he suddenly took a sharp breath, “Was I wrong? Oh god, please tell me I’m wrong!”

“You’re wrong,” Regulus easily complied.

“Don’t tell me...” Harry gasped, looking excited like a child ready to open his first gift on Christmas. Regulus just nodded with a Cheshire cat’s grin, looking expectantly at the green-eyed man. Harry burst out laughing for five whole minutes before he gained enough breath to form words, “You mean, Uncle Rody didn’t touch her after they were married? Really?”

“Not even once and I assure you, she tried her hardest to get into Rody’s bed.” Regulus smiled vindictively, “But he could only get hard for me, even after three years apart. That’s what she gets for trying to make a gay man go straight for her.”

“Serves her right,” Harry grinned and gave a pleased sigh.

“At least, that was the main reason for awhile,” Regulus continued, “After that, our Lord came along and she was obsessed.”

Harry scolded, “You mean she is obsessed?”

Regulus snickered seeing the young man’s sour expression, “Of course. And I asked Rodolphus to keep his marriage despite Bellatrix’s relentless demand for a divorce.”

“Why?” Harry blinked in confusion.

“Because, and I’m sure it’s just a poor excuse, but our Lord had refused all of her advances, saying that he wouldn’t commit infidelity with one of his most faithful followers’ wife.”

“Oh my god,” Harry chortled.

“I told you, karma’s a dish best served cold.” Regulus smirked, “But let’s forget about my crazy bitch of a cousin. How have you been lately, Harry?” The older man asked kindly, “My Lord hasn’t been giving you trouble, has he? You know for a Black, family always comes first. If he had hurt you for what you were forced to do, I could...”

“He didn’t.” Harry interrupted, smiling dreamily, “And if he did give me pain on purpose, trust that I also got just as much pleasure, if not more from him.”

Regulus glared good-naturedly at Harry before he sighed with relief, “And what did he say about that fake marriage license?”

“He said let’s make it official; see this little beauty here.” Harry raised his left hand, the hand he had been subtly hiding out of Regulus’ sight before.

It was Regulus’ turn to gasp, “Is that... the Gaunt ring?”

“Oh yes, it is. Uncle Reggie, you should have seen Bella’s face when she saw this little guy on my ring finger. It was so priceless I wish I had had my phone on me just so I could capture that moment. I still regret not being able to, it would have been the perfect gift for you.” Harry sighed deeply.

Regulus grinned but before he could reply, a deep booming voice bellowed behind Harry’s back abruptly cutting him off, “Harry, is that a fucking ring on your finger???” Sirius shrieked loudly.

“Oh shit...” Harry and Regulus both winced.