Pansy sat on his couch, feet bouncing up and down while she glowered darkly at him. Draco did everything to ignore her, and it would have worked if she wasn't determined to force his attention on her with sighing and huffing every few seconds. Resignation spread through him as he lowered his quill; he had to finish this chapter within two days, otherwise he would have troubles with his publisher. In two days there was going to be a huge Ministry function to collect money for Merlin knows what and Draco had promised he would give his still unfinished chapter of his new book to them. Pansy was no help with that.
“What? What is it? I have to finish my work here, so by the love of Merlin spit it out already.”
“You can't ignore it any more, Draco! The threats get worse, and more! You have to do something about it!”
“I've always received threats, why should it be different this time? It's just a crazy fan or someone who dislikes that I write about the war, nothing new.”
“The last one said it'll happen soon. You should at least tell someone at the DMLE about it. Please Draco, I'm scared they'll do something this time.”
“Fine, I'll go there this afternoon and show them the letters. Okay?”
“Yes. Now let's have something to eat.”
“I have to finish—”
“Tough shit, should have thought about that before you said I can come over for lunch.”
Sighing, he locked his stuff in the top drawer of his desk and stood up; if Pansy had something in her mind not even Draco could stop her from getting it her way. It's not that he didn't try from time to time, but today wasn't one of these days. He had to finish his Chapter, and now on top of it he also had to visit the Ministry.
Draco walked down the marbled corridor of the DMLE towards the breakroom where he was meeting with Officer Jackson. He was already in a hurry to get out of here again and now he had to go to a breakroom instead of an actual office because the bloke had decided they could do this just as well with a cup of tea, surrounded by Salazar knows how many others.
Finally he found the door and stepped through it, just to feel the urge to back straight out again. Officer Roberts, a white haired man that looked seconds away from his retirement, sat at a table in the corner of the empty room and was laughing wholeheartedly with someone Draco would know anywhere. Suppressing a growl Draco walked over there and pulled one empty chair back to sit down. With a loud slap he dropped the folder with the received threats on the table and watched Potter's face darken.
Schooling his own expression he looked at Roberts, “Thank you for finding the time to meet me Officer. I brought you every letter I received over the last couple of months that includes this specific topic.”
“Ah Mister Malfoy, I'm glad you found your way to us. This isn't something one should take lightly. Tea? It's passable here, not the best quality but Harry here knows how to make the best out of it. You know Harry Potter, do you?”
“Yes, we went to school together. Could we get this over with? I wouldn't be here if I hadn't promised a friend to tell someone, and I still have a lot of work to do before Friday night. To be truthful, I don't really care about the threats, I received many of them since my first book came out and nothing has ever happened. I don't know what makes her believe that these are different, but she does.”
Officer Jackson looked a bit taken aback but he covered it quickly and pulled the folder towards him to browse it quickly. Draco knew there was no reason for this behaviour, except that he didn't fancy wasting his time here, and with Potter of all people right next to him.
“Since when have you been receiving the letters your friend is worried about?”
Draco furrowed his brows and tried to think back to when the first one had arrived. It should have been shortly after it became public that he’d started the third part of his so called ‘War Report’. “About four months ago? Yeah, that sounds right.”
“And how many of these are there?” Jackson asked with a tap to the folder.
“About fifty. I received the last one this morning. Look, I really don't think it's something we should take too seriously. Many people don't like me, or don't like that I write about the war. A lot of people are worried about their names because I don't use false names in my books and if one of their family members was in the war their name will be in there somewhere. But they’ve never done anything to me. My mail gets checked for curses and other stuff that might harm me before I get it and my house is warded against everything the Security Company could think of, only a Fidelius would be more effective but that's something I try to avoid.”
“Well it's good you listened to your friend anyway. I'll look into it straight away and tell you if I find something. The older letters won't tell me anything but the ones from the last couple of weeks might have some magical traces left, maybe we can track them down.”
“Is there anything else you need from me?”
“No, try to be careful even if you don't believe something could happen.”
“I will. Thanks for your time officer. Potter.” With that Draco stood up and left them to their tea and his letters. He had to go home and finish this blasted chapter.
His Floo chimed and Draco couldn't even look up in time before Pansy had already started to talk and pace his room. “Please tell you've been there today.”
“Hello to you too, Pansy. Yes I've been at the Ministry and talked to an Officer there. He’s already started to investigate if that makes you happy.”
“Good. How was your day? Did you finish your chapter?”
“I'm nearly done with it now. Potter was at the DMLE today.”
“Potter? I thought he quit the Ministry?”
“I thought the same. He wasn't in any kind of uniform, just there drinking tea with Officer Jackson.”
“Well he might have visited him as you came over. As far as I know he's not doing anything at the moment. Rumours say he's in a bad place since he and Ginny split up.”
“Didn't look like that to me today.”
“What do you need details for? You said they say he's in a bad place and I say it didn't look like it today. He looked better than the last time I've seen him which was ages ago and right after they made their divorce official so I'm not surprised about it.”
“What did he look like then?”
“It's Potter, he looked like Potter. Horrendous hair, ripped jeans, his shirt too tight and all in all pretty happy until I walked in and slapped my folder on the table.”
Draco looked up from his work to find Pansy grinning at him. “What?”
“Oh, nothing. Just reminded me of a much younger version of you back at Hogwarts.”
“No. Not tonight, I won't go there with you again. Get out, I have to work. Don't forget to be here on time Friday night. You know how much I hate being late. And now get lost.”
“Of course my love,” Pansy cackled as she made her way to the Floo, finally leaving Draco to finish his work in peace.
“Any new letters?”
Draco looked to his side to find Potter standing next to him at the bar the Ministry had set up for tonight with a glass of whisky in his hand.
“Not that it's your business since you're not working there Potter, but no. Nothing new since the one that told me it'll happen soon.”
“Good. Who are you here with?”
“Must be a spectacular date given the fact you rather stand here and talk to me instead of her.”
“It's not a her and yes, it's rather spectacular if your date drags you everywhere to show you off like some kind of breeded puppy.”
“Sorry to hear that.” Draco looked over at Potter's angry face and suddenly realised that this was the first civil conversation they’d probably ever had. He was just about to state that fact when he saw something racing towards him and a small package dropped at the bar in front of them.
He only had the time to look sceptically at it before someone screamed “DOWN! EVERYONE DOWN!” and something hard hit him in the side and made him tumble into the floor before he felt a heavy weight on top of him and heard a shouted “ Protego! ”
Suddenly all hell broke loose and Draco had to shield his eyes from a bursting fireball above them that made the shield around them wobble dangerously. He managed to shake his wand out of his sleeve to cast a second Protego that stabilised the first one until the flames and smoke cloud were gone.
“What the actual fuck was that?” Draco managed to choke out.
“Blazing bomb. Are you alright?”
Draco's breath faltered as the realisation hit him. That heavy weight on top of him, the one that crashed him into the floor to shield him and now asked if he was alright was no one else but Potter.
“Malfoy, are you alright? Did it hit you somewhere?”
“Wha—? Yes I'm fine! Could you please get off of me now, Potter?”
“Oh, yes. Sorry. Can you cast another Protego around us while I check if it's safe to drop it?”
“Yes.” Draco did as he was told before Potter ended his charm and rolled off of him with closed eyes, just to start some complicated movements with his wand while mumbling a spell Draco never had heard of.
Opening his eyes he looked at Draco lying next to him. “It's safe to drop it. There's nothing left of the curse. We'll stand up now and you will stay at my side until I find someone who will look into that. Got that?”
Potter looked so furious that Draco didn't dare to disagree, he only nodded and dropped the shield around them as he stood up.
Only then he noticed the destruction around them. The bar was a burning heap of rubbish, broken pieces of glasses and bottles scattered around them. Everything within ten feet was burnt. Luckily Potter's scream had been loud enough to warn everyone around them and as far as Draco could tell no one had got badly hurt, except for a few cuts or burnt hair and robes, nothing had happened.
Potter seemingly came to the same result because he just began to march through the room towards some of the Aurors who had just arrived to clear the room before he started to scream at them for not doing their job right by letting something like that through the wards.
Draco looked around them not knowing what to do, he was still trying to come to terms with what had happened just now. He couldn't believe Pansy was right. Pansy. Where was Pansy?
“Potter! I can't find Pansy! Where's Pansy?”
“Miss Parkinson was one of the first that got evacuated, Mister Malfoy. She's furious because of that,” one of the Aurors said. “We thought it best to bring her somewhere safer, everyone knows you're close to her.”
Potter still fought with the Auror as the DMLE arrived and Jackson stepped next to Draco. “What happened Mister Malfoy?”
“I—I don't know. Ask Potter, he was with me when it happened.” Draco could feel the first waves of panic crashing in now. He wanted to go home.
“Just a few minutes before we got you, yes?” Jackson eyed him up, his face definitely worried now.
Draco only nodded before he looked around them once again. He needed a chair or something else to sit on, he knew his legs wouldn’t carry him much longer
Suddenly there was a chair and he got pressed down into it. “It's alright Malfoy. Nothing happened. No one's hurt except the pride of the Ministry and they need that from time to time. I'll talk to Jackson now and tell him what happened, then we'll see what they've planned. Stay here, don't move.”
Draco didn't even think about moving as he watched Potter step aside with Jackson. They seemingly cast a silencing spell around them because Draco couldn't hear a single word they said through the general humming of the room. He watched as the conversation between them got louder until Potter looked as if he was screaming at Jackson while shaking his head whenever the older man said something in return.
“Fine!” the bubble around them burst and Draco jumped at Potter's scream. Seconds later he got pulled up from his chair and dragged to the atrium by him. “Hold on tight, I'm going to Apparate us. Three to five times. No breaks in between.”
Draco had no time to answer, Potter only grabbed his arms and pulled them into the darkness.
“Where the fuck are we?” Draco had opened his eyes as Potter had let go of him to find himself in the darkness of the middle of nowhere. The only thing he could make out was a small hut in front of them, Potter already walking towards the door.
“Safe house,” was all he got as an answer, Potter not even looking back at him.
“That's not a house! That's a hut! A hut that looks like it might crash any second now!”
“Would you please stop screaming and come inside now?” Potter said as he reached the door. A second later he was gone and Draco stood alone outside in the darkness. Cursing under his breath he followed Potter.
“What the fuck happened? I don't want to be here! I want to go home and see if Pansy is alright!”
“Would you please shut up for a second? I know this is not what you asked for Malfoy, and believe me when I say it's the same for me. But now we're here so let's try to get this over with and afterwards we never have to talk to each other again if that is what you want.”
“Wait, you'll stay here too?!? There's only one room as far as I can see! One room, one bed, not enough space for two people!”
“I'll sleep on the couch, you take the bed. The bathroom is separate.”
“Could you please explain what the fuck happened and why we're here now instead of me being at my nice house and you fuck knows where before I have a total breakdown?”
“Okay, listen. That bomb was meant for you, it's no coincidence it landed in front of you and it was your luck I was there and that I've seen something like that before. It's something they took from the Muggles and modified it until it came out like this. Jackson ordered me to take you here until they find whoever sent it. So it's up to me that we stay here and that you're safe until they find them. And here I am, thinking that quitting the Ministry will keep me out of their bullshit.”
“No one is forcing you to stay here, Potter! Especially since I don't want to be here! That's bullshit! They don't come into my house, I could stay there! Don't they have someone else to babysit me?”
“No, because they all suck and Jackson knows that. I'm the first to shower, don't you even dare try to run away. The door is locked, only I can open it.” With that Potter left him and slammed the bathroom door shut behind him.
Well, that was great. Locked up with grumpy Potter for only Salazar knows how long while someone tries to kill him. It couldn't get any worse, or so he thought until Potter stepped out of the bathroom, wearing nothing but a towel around his hips.
While Potter busied himself rummaging through different closets until he found what he was looking for Draco couldn't help but stare at his bare back. Every movement from Potter accented another part of his back and made his muscles flex until Draco nearly forgot why he was here in the first place. That was until Potter turned around to throw some of the clothes at him and Draco remembered who he was ogling right now.
“Shower, you smell like a roasted chicken. The clothes are clean, so is the rest of this hut. I'll send a Patronus to Hermione, should she tell something to Pansy?”
“Tell her I'm fine and that everything is good and that I'll be back soon or something like that. She'll be furious whatever you tell her so it doesn't really matter.”
Draco stood up from the bed and made his way to the shower. Closing the bathroom door behind him, he sagged down to the floor and allowed himself to silently break down for a second. There was no way he could survive this. Being locked in with Potter was bad enough, being locked in with Potter while a murderer was after him was worse, but being locked in with Potter who looked like a wet dream while he strutted naked through a hut that was only as big as Draco's living room while a murderer was after him was the worst. Not to mention the clothes Potter had thrown after him, not only would he look like a tramp in these saggy Muggle clothes, they also smelled like Potter did as he had thrown himself on top of Draco to shield him.
He clearly had waited too long for his next shag if he drooled over Potter of all people now.
After a short shower, including a desperate wank where he tried to be as silent as possible, he dressed into the stuff Potter had given him and went out of the bathroom and straight to bed without looking at the other man.
“I need some parchment.”
“Yes, and ink and a quill.”
“Well, I have paper and a pencil here.”
“I don't like that stuff, I only write traditionally.”
“Well they’re the only things I have. They’ll have to do.”
“Fine! Give me the stuff so that I can busy myself with something before I go insane. Can at least make the best of it by writing.”
Draco already knew he would regret that, he was currently at one of these parts in the book that were usually followed by nightmares because he would drag up the sorts of memories he'd give everything to forget. Usually he'd have Pansy around after these parts, they would drink and laugh until the sun came up and they both fall asleep wherever they were that moment.
“What part are you writing right now?”
“What do you care?”
“I've read your books. Hermione said it would be good for me to see the other side, and not only small glimpses of it. Your books are good.”
“You read my books? And like them?” Draco was sure Potter was playing games with him right now. Why would he read these books? Not even Draco would read them, not to mention write them, if his mind healer hadn't said it could help him.
“Yes. You stopped at Dumbledore’s death. I went on the run shortly after that and only know a few things that happened over that year. So of course I'm interested in what you write right now.”
“I'm at a part in the middle of the summer break, he was mad about something Ollivander had told him. I heard his screams through the whole Manor for days.” Draco managed to suppress a shudder as he looked up and found Potter looking haunted at him, his face nearly as pale as the wall behind him.
“Yeah, I know that part.”
“How can you—?”
“My mind was linked to Voldemort’s for years, especially when he was really angry or really happy. Sometimes I would get small glimpses of what he was doing, Mr. Ollivander was one of them. He had no idea that what he had told him was wrong, he couldn't have known. It was the night I left the house where I've grown up.”
Draco's heart sped up and he felt sick, living with the Dark Lord was horrible, but having him in your head, for years, he couldn’t even start to imagine. “What else have you seen?”
“Before or after that? Not that much, I've seen you once or twice, your father, the day he killed the goblins after we broke into Gringotts for example. Or what he did to these snatchers who caught us after we fled the Manor. I think there's a bottle of firewhisky around here, I have the feeling we'll need that tonight.”
Draco didn't dare to say something, he left Potter to his searching and cast a Muffliato around him so that he didn’t have to hear him and could concentrate on his writing.
When he looked back up again it was late, he had finished what he needed to write and now he felt sick, and tired. To his own surprise he found Potter sitting at the couch with a book in his hand, two plates with food at the small table in front of him. Draco hadn't even noticed him getting up and cooking as he wrote.
Standing up he stretched his arms and back, only stopping as he could hear a satisfying crack, before he walked over to where Potter sat.
Draco only nodded as he sat down on the floor and pulled one of the plates towards him. “Thanks for making dinner, Potter.”
“How are you feeling?”
“Empty, cold, sick, choose one, they all fit.” Draco wasn't really hungry right now, but he hoped that Potter had found the Whisky and he wouldn't drink any of it with an empty stomach. “Heard anything from Jackson?”
“No.” Potter pulled his own plate towards him now and started to eat. After his first few bites he looked back at Draco. “Knowing them it might take a while. But Jackson promised me to pull the Aurors in and to work night-shifts so that you can go home soon.”
“And what about you? Not fancying going back home or what?”
“I am at home, Malfoy. This hut, as you call it, is one of my homes. It's my safe house. Not even Ron and Hermione know where it is. I come here if I want to be alone and undisturbed.”
“Oh,” that explained why the clothes and the bed smelled like Potter. “Sorry for discriminating against your house then.”
At that Potter had the nerve to laugh. “It is a hut though. You're right, but I like it. It's quiet and no one can find me here.”
“Didn’t you say something about whisky earlier? I think I won't sleep without tonight.”
“You know that isn't good, don’t you?”
“Yes mother, I know that. Thanks. I'm done after that book anyway. I have to find something else to write then. Maybe something that won't bring trauma back this time.”
“Well if it's like that I can't say no, can I? Besides, it's probably way easier to stand you when I'm drunk.”
“Haha, fuck you Potter.”
“Wouldn't that be nice?”
Oh Draco was going to kill this git before all of this ended.
Drinking was a bad idea, very bad. Draco's head spun as he lay down in bed and he had no idea what had caused him to drink that much. Except Potter, who had sat too close to him, who had laughed so much even if his eyes looked haunted seconds later again. Potter, who talked too much and told Draco things he hadn't even asked for, as if they were friends.
Draco sat upright in bed gasping for air, the screams of Ollivander still ringing in his ears. He knew this would happen tonight, it always happened. His whole body shook as he tried to still his breaths, but it was too late.
A few small candles around the hut started to burn as Draco looked over at Potter. He had hoped he wouldn't wake him, but how else could it be.
Potter took one look at him and was on his feet and beside him before Draco could even blink. “Malfoy, it's fine. You're safe here. Breathe.”
Draco tried, but his head spun so much he couldn't really concentrate on anything else. Out of nowhere Potter took his hand and pressed it flat against his own chest so that Draco could feel his rapidly beating heart underneath his fingers, it took him a while until he realised what else Potter wanted to show him. Potter's chest rose and fell in a steady beat and Draco knew what he was trying to tell him. Closing his eyes he tried to concentrate on nothing else than Potter's steady breath and the beating of his heart under Draco's hand.
The spinning of his head slowed down as he slowly gathered back his control until it was nothing else than a small nuisance.
“Better?” he could hear Potter's quiet voice.
“Yes. Thank you. Usually Pansy is with me, it's not so bad if someone's there.”
“Why do you do that to yourself?”
“So that they won't forget, Potter. It's easy to forget if no one's talking about it.”
Potter stayed quiet after that, a long time passed without one of them saying a word. Draco knew he had his hand still on Potter's chest, but he couldn't let go of it just now, just a few more moments. He needed something to ground him.
“Move over,” Potter said quietly.
“I'll stay with you. I won't let you sleep here alone after what just happened.”
“I'm fine. I don't need your pity.”
“I'm not doing it because of that. I know what it feels like to sleep alone while you're scared, I won't let that happen under my roof. Move over now, will you? I'm tired and the couch is far from comfortable.”
“You know that you shouldn't do that, right? We hate each other, remember?”
“I don't hate you Malfoy. You're still shaking, please just move a few inches so that I can fit in here. Just pretend I'm Pansy or something like that.”
Draco huffed but gave in and scooted over until he nearly laid on the edge of the bed while Potter climbed in next to him. As soon as he had settled he took Draco's hand again and pulled it back onto his chest.
“See? That's better and it won't kill you if I stay here,” Potter mumbled sleepily. “What does Pansy usually do when she's with you?”
“We drink until we fall asleep wherever we are.”
“Hmm, that's easy. We already drank, time to sleep now.” Potter yawned hugely and a few seconds later Draco could hear his breathing grew slow and soft until he was asleep again.
“Nothing is easy with you Potter. Never was.” Closing his eyes Draco waited for sleep to come, Potter's heartbeat steady under his fingers.
The first thing Draco realised as he woke up was that he felt surprisingly warm and relaxed, the second one was that his head currently rested on something that moved. Opening his eyes he found a book floating above his head, pages lit by the slowly rising sun outside the window.
Remembering last night and realising what exactly his moving pillow must be Draco jumped up and scooted over so quickly he nearly fell off the bed. “Why didn't you wake me?!?”
“I didn't want to. You need your sleep, it's not your problem I woke up at an ungodly hour. So I let you sleep and read instead.”
“Did it come to your mind that I mightn’t like waking up with you as a pillow?”
“So why didn't you wake me? Or push me aside or something like that?”
“I felt quite comfortable like that, and you looked comfortable too. So I thought ‘fuck it’ and let you sleep. No big deal.”
“No big—? We're supposed to dislike each other! You can't just lie here and tell me it's no big deal to serve as my private pillow!”
“I already told you that I don't hate you, or dislike you, call it whatever you want.”
“So you're one to cuddle all the people you're supposed to protect?”
“Whatever. Is there something I can wear? I want to take a shower before I go back to writing.”
Draco groaned as he lowered Potter's sorry excuse of a pencil to make a break. He needed something to drink. And a bit of fresh air. Maybe he could stand at the window for a bit of he wasn't allowed to go outside.
Ending his muffliato he stretched and turned around — just to find Potter once again nearly naked in front of his wardrobe.
“Could you please stop walking around here naked?”
“I'm wearing a towel, I'm not naked.”
“A towel isn't something that counts as wearing something!”
Potter laughed and looked over his shoulder at Draco. “Well if it's like that,” with one fluid motion Potter let the towel drop to the floor.
Draco instantly forced his eyes shut and turned back around, he could feel his face getting hot and anger washing over him. “What the fuck is wrong with you? I can't take this any longer! Why? Why, Potter?”
“Because it's funny to rile you up. That's the one thing that never changed and never will, Malfoy. But if you can't take it I will stop, of course. I'm here to keep you safe after all, not to make you uncomfortable. I'm sorry for my behaviour and it won't happen again.” Something in Potter's tone was different now and Draco was sure he liked that even less.
Potter kept that tone the rest of the day until Draco was sure he’d explode if he had to hear another ‘Of course, Malfoy,’ or ‘Is there something I can get for you, Malfoy?’
After dinner Draco went for another shower just to get away from him for a few minutes. For a minute he considered a wank to clear his head but he dropped that thought only a few seconds later.
After his shower Draco went to bed but before he could pull the blanket up Potter was by his side, once again with his annoying official voice. “Is there something you need before I go to bed — the couch?”
“No. Wait, yes! Drop that shit!”
“That shit! Your ‘I'm talking to a customer’ voice! I don't know if people usually buy that shit but I won't so just drop it. I'm not a damsel in distress.”
“Given the fact that someone is plotting to kill you this very moment you kind of are. This is the way I got trained to talk to people in this situation and I forgot that. You're in a stressful situation and my behaviour was inappropriate. You're probably scared and me riling you up is nowhere near helpful.”
“The only thing that's not helpful is you talking to me like that! I'm not scared about the killer, I'm safe with you! So stop being like that and go back to normal!”
Draco pulled the blanket over his head and tried to blend Potter out. They were locked up for two days now and so far Draco’d had a wank in Potter's shower, he had cuddled him, he had seen him naked and now he had told him he felt safe around him. This was horrible. This was a total fuck up. And Draco realised with a start that he couldn't sleep, and neither could Potter guessing by the tossing and turning he could hear from the couch.
The next day went like shit, Draco only fell asleep as the sky outside the window slowly turned a bright pink and now he was moody and tired. Potter also looked off, he had dark shadows under his eyes that weren't there the day before and he opened and closed his book randomly.
Around noon Draco had enough of it. He couldn't concentrate on his writing, his eyes burned and he could barely hold them open. With a sigh he stood up and spelled the curtains shut before he walked the few steps to the bed.
“What are you doing?”
“I'm going to bed, what does it look like to you? We both haven't slept properly so I gathered a quick nap would help. I can't concentrate like that.”
“Oh, yeah sounds logical.”
“Yes. So are you coming or not?” Draco knew he shouldn't have asked that, but he also knew he wouldn't sleep if he hadn't asked.
“Sleep. I want to sleep. And you're tired too. So are you coming or not?”
Draco couldn't stop the exaggerated sigh coming from his mouth right now, but Potter stood up and shuffled over to him nevertheless. Seconds later the mattress dipped as Potter slipped into the bed next to him.
“Are you sure?”
Draco sighed again before he pulled Potter farther into bed and threw the blanket over him. An idea struck him and he knew he would hate himself for it later but right now he only wanted to sleep and not care about anything.
“Comfortable enough?” Draco asked with a yawn.
“I think so, why?”
Draco didn't answer, instead he pulled Potter's arm up to rest his head on top of it before he dropped his hand on Potter's chest.
“What are you doing, Malfoy?”
“Making myself comfortable to sleep. You said you didn't mind.”
“I don't mind!” Potter blurted out.
“Good, because I won't move anymore now. Night Potter.”
Draco was fast asleep within a few seconds.
This time he was the first to wake up, also it seemingly was his turn to be the pillow now. Somehow while asleep they had switched positions, Potter's head was buried in his neck, one arm and one leg thrown over Draco and he suddenly knew why Potter found that quite comfortable.
Potter's breath tickled over his skin while he held on close to Draco in his sleep and he couldn't help but relax even more. There was no way he was going to wake him. Careful not to startle him, he buried his hand in Potter's messy hair and closed his eyes again.
“Draco, wake up.” Potter's whisper was still very close to his ear and as Draco reluctantly opened his eyes he found he hadn't moved away to wake him. “Jackson sent his Patronus. They have a trace and are after them now. He said they might catch them soon if everything goes as planned.”
“They do?” Draco needed a few seconds to realise what that meant; the second they had them he was safe again. He could go home and dress in normal clothes and — oh. He had to go home tonight. He probably wouldn't see Potter for another few months until they ran into each other by accident somewhere. “Can we stay in bed until we know if they have them?”
“Yeah, sure. We can stay here.” Potter untangled himself from Draco and rolled onto his back, pulling Draco with him until he was lying half on top of him. Potter’s hand on his back held him safe.
Together they waited for the message to arrive.
“The book is a hit. Since last week you broke every selling record Borgin and Burkes ever had. Sure you want to go there today Draco?”
“My presence there was announced for today Pansy, I can't just not go there.”
“Isn't it enough that you stripped down for them by writing these books? Do they really need autographs and pictures of you too? They should be happy with what they already have.”
“Watch out, one could think you're jealous you have to share me.”
“You know exactly what I mean. I'm totally fine with sharing you, hell it would be a nice change if you would get on someone else's nerves from time to time. I'm just worried that something like last year happens again.”
“They've got him, I'm fine Pansy. My next books will be published under a pseudonym and all of this will calm down. But today I have to go and sign books.”
“Will you ever tell me where you went and what Potter had to do with it before they arrested Vincent's uncle?”
“Fine. Don't tell me. Have fun with the fans. But don't come back and moan at me about how bad everything was.”
“Nothing's going to happen Pansy. You'll see. I'll come back annoyed but healthy.”
“If not I'm going to kill you!”
Pansy stomped towards the Floo, and before Draco could say something she was already gone. He knew she was only worried about him, but right now there was no reason for it. He hadn't received any threats since the story with the bomb became public.
Draco couldn't believe this was already one year ago. One year where he had finished his book and started a new one in between, a romantic novel he surely wouldn't write under his real name even if it was nearly finished now, one year since he had seen Potter the last time. Shaking his head he stood up to get dressed, he couldn't go there now. He had to be presentable in half an hour after all.
Draco smiled as his, what felt like, thousandth fan stepped in front of him with one of his books in hand for him to sign. A bit of small talk, a nice smile for the camera and they were gone to make some space for the next.
This went on for hours until Draco could finally see the end of the line. Genuinely happy about his nearing release he didn't pay much attention to whoever talked to him anymore, he just wanted to go home and lock himself up for the next decade. That was until he found himself staring at Granger out of all people.
“Hi, I need to talk to you if you don't mind?”
“Hello Granger, what is it? I only have like five people left until I finally can go home. Make it quick.”
“Okay quick it shall be then. Have you heard anything from Harry? He's been missing since he bought your last book, we can't find him and I'm worried about him. Your description of the final battle was very accurate by the way.”
“What? Potter’s missing for a week and you only do something about it now???”
“Of course not! We’ve already looked everywhere and asked the Aurors for help but they couldn't find him either. My last hope was that you would know something.”
“I — I might have an idea where he could be. Let me finish this and then I'll go and see if I'm right, yes? I'll let you know.”
“Thank you.” Granger looked close to tears as she pulled her copy of his book out of a small bag for him to sign.
After the last picture was taken Draco Apparated straight back home, he needed to get out of these robes before he could go looking for Potter. If not even Granger could find him he had to be at his small hut in the middle of nowhere.
Draco was nervous as he dressed in Potter's shirt and joggers that he had kept as he left. They hadn't seen each other since Draco had stepped out of the door after Jackson’s Patronus arrived in the middle of the night.
He had thought about owling Potter, he really had. But he sat in front of the empty parchment for hours, blankly staring down, not knowing what he could write that didn't sound pathetic. Truth was that he had missed him since he arrived back at his house, but he couldn't say that. He hadn't even told Pansy about it. So he dropped his quill and burnt the parchment and ignored the lingering feeling of missing something.
Until now. If Potter was missing since he bought the last book this couldn't be a good sign. After everything that happened to Potter Draco wouldn't recommend to read the last part without someone there, but knowing Potter he did just that.
Leaving a letter for Pansy behind he stepped out of his house and concentrated on what he remembered about Potter's hut. Envisioning the small door he apparated away, hoping it was enough to get him there.
Opening his eyes he let out a relieved breath, he was in the right place. Now he only had to see if Potter was here too.
Knocking at the door had no effect whatsoever , if Potter was there he didn't open it. But Draco didn't even think about giving up. A satisfying click told him his Alohomora had the required effect, pulling up a shield he stepped into the darkness of the hut.
A strong hex hit his shield the second Draco closed the door behind him. He tried to let Potter know it was him but he couldn't speak, something inside here blocked every word he tried to say and Potter's attacks didn't end. Draco had to think quickly if he wanted to get out of here unharmed, he was sure Potter wouldn't kill anyone, but that didn't mean he wasn't able to forward him straight to St Mungo.
Rummaging through the pockets of the joggers he wore Draco found a piece of paper, one of the sites he wrote while he was locked up in here with Potter. Scrunching it together he threw it in the direction where the hexes came from, hoping Potter would notice it.
Suddenly everything around him went silent as Potter seemingly stopped whatever spell it was that hit Draco's shield mercilessly. A few seconds later he could hear a sharp intake of breath.
“Yes you nitwit! Could you please make some light in here now?”
“Oh yeah, sure!” The lights turned on and Draco could see Potter now. He looked tired, dark circles spotted his eyes and his hair was even worse than usual. “Sorry about that, you took me by surprise.”
“You look like shit.”
“Well thanks, nice to see you too. Why are you here?”
“Granger came to me, she's worried because you've been missing for a week now. She asked me if I’d heard something from you.”
“So you thought it was a good idea to come here and break in after I hadn't seen you for a year?”
“You said we'll go back to ignoring each other after this is done, and I just respected your wishes!”
“My wishes? Do you ever listen to yourself? Just say that you don't care about it and spare me the rest.”
“Don't care? I tried to write to you, but I couldn't think of anything so I gave up. And you're not better! You haven't written either! And nevertheless I'm here because I was worried about you!”
“I'm fine, thanks. You can leave now.”
“No you're not. How long has it been since you slept? Or took a shower?”
“What do you care? Just go.”
“No. I do care, so please go and take a shower while I cook something for us.”
“Why do you care? Why are you here?”
“I just do. Go. We'll talk later.”
“I really don't get you.”
“Neither do I. Go. Or I'll bodybind you and push you under the shower myself.”
“You shouldn't have done that to yourself. Especially since you were there. You should have stayed with Granger or Weasley.”
“If you know why haven't you done it? That's your stupid reckless Gryffindor brain. You can't do everything on your own, Potter.”
“I didn't want to be with them.”
“Why didn't you go to someone else then?”
“Because I don't know where you live. So I came back here and rather stayed alone.”
“You don't — Potter, why did you want to go to me of all people?”
Potter looked out of the window to the now dark sky outside. The last hour neither of them had said a single word until Draco couldn't take it any longer and started his speech. This wasn't something he had expected Potter to say.
“I missed you. I know you probably didn't miss me but I did and I wanted to thank you for writing the last book even if it wasn't easy for me to read it. So thank you.”
“You missed me? You, Potter, are the dumbest person alive! Why didn't you just write me a letter then?”
“I thought you didn't want me to write to you.”
“And why shouldn't I want that???”
“Because you didn't write to me either.”
At that Draco laughed, “Okay, let's say we're both stupid. Yes I wanted you to write to me because I missed you too but I didn't dare to write to you because I thought you wouldn't like it. So how long is it since you slept, you still look horrible.”
“I don't know, a year or something like that.” This time Potter looked at him, a small hopeful smile on his otherwise tired face.
“Well, let's change that.” Draco stood up and took Potter's hand in his own to pull him towards the bed. Tonight they would sleep, what they would do tomorrow, well Draco already had a few ideas for that. Maybe this time they had more time together than only a few days.