"This house is disgusting," Draco told Harry. The two boys were currently standing in the door way of Grimmauld Place.
Harry gripped Draco's hand a little bit tighter, "Sorry. I don't think anyone has been in here since Hermione accidentally showed a bloke named Yaxley the location." Harry avoided saying the term Death Eater around Draco as much as possible, after he learnt that the blond didn't like it a few weeks into their relationship.
"That's no excuse for the state of this place," Draco huffed. Number 12 Grimmauld Place was in fact disgusting. Dust covered every surface and if you listened closely, you could hear the sound of something scuttering around on one of the floors. The boys glanced at each other before they made their way hesitantly down the long hallway. Wallpaper was peeling and flaked off onto the thin moldy carpet. Before the two entered the house, Harry told Draco to watch out for the troll-leg umbrella stand and to be quite near the portrait of Mrs Walburga.
Harry also warned him about the rows of House-elf heads so Draco mocked sticking his finger down his throat when they made their way to the end of the hallway and he looked towards the stairs heading up to the upper floors.
They entered the kitchen and Harry sighed quietly when he saw that the table and chairs were broken. The pantry's contents were thrown about the room, so were the rest of Kreachers belongings. Draco scrunched up his nose at the smell of rotten food, "We're not going to start cleaning this today are we? I didn't wear the appropriate clothing."
Harry forced himself not to roll his eyes at his over dramatic boyfriend, "No we're not. We'll come back tomorrow with a list of what needs to be done first and reinforcements."
"Good. Shall we move on? This stench is making me sick."
This time Harry did roll his eyes and he swept Draco backwards towards the living room. Harry sighed loudly this time, the couches were tipped over, the desk drawer open and several of the piano keys were on the opposite side of the room.
"We can fix it," Draco said softly as he pulled out his wand.
Harry shook his head, "Not now. Tomorrow."
"Alright. Let's go upstairs." This time Draco led Harry out of the room and went to put his hand on the railing but thought better of it and strode up the stairs to the first floor. He entered a drawing-room and stared wide-eyed at the tapestry of the Black family tree.
"You're on it too," Harry said from behind the blonde.
"Where?" Draco asked. Harry walked over to the wall the tapestry was on and pointed to the faded gold line from Narcissa and Lucius' names. Draco peered closer at the Black/Malfoy cluster and frowned. "Why are some names burnt out?"
"Sirius said that his mother blasted them off because they're blood traitors."
"Oh," Draco looked at the tapestry for a moment longer. "Are you going to get rid of it?"
Harry shrugged, "I'm not sure."
"Take all the time you need to decide."
Harry smiled at his boy friend, "Thanks. Let's go check out the other rooms."
The two had gotten together on New Years and had been going strong for 7 months. They hadn't been officially together long until they finally broke and acted on the years of pent-up sexual tension, they hadn't slept in separate beds from that moment on. Asking Draco to move in with him after graduation was easy compared to actually telling him what the current state of their future house was in. Draco laughed at first, thinking it was a lame joke Harry was sometimes known to pull but he soon stopped laughing when Hermione and Ron backed Harry up with apologetic grimaces. After that Draco just moaned about manual labor and if they could please send a House-elf or two, to clean up before they got there but Harry and Hermione put their feet down and said that this was something that they had to do by them selves.
When graduation eventually rolled around and school ended for the eighth(and seventh) years, Harry and Draco stopped by the Malfoy manor to pack Draco's belongings. Neither boy wanted to step foot in the manor again but they moved swiftly around Draco's vast bedroom, shoving everything into one of Hermione's undetectable expansion charmed bags. Since Grimmauld Place was uninhabitable at the current moment, they were staying in one of the rooms at The Leaky Cauldron. Blaise offered them a room at his house but Draco refused politely saying that they wouldn't be staying in The Leaky Cauldron for long, which was true, Harry already had a game plan in his head of what rooms they needed to sort out first.
The last two rooms on the first floor were a bedroom and a bathroom that were in reasonable condition. The second floor held the bedroom that Ron and Harry shared during a summer, another bathroom and an empty room that was filled of dust, musty smelling carpet and suspicious looking curtains that Draco voiced that could be filled with Doxies.
Draco found the source of the scuttering on third floor, in the bedroom that once held Buckbeak when he screamed at the sight of an abnormally large rat. Harry rushed in the room with his wand out, ready to hex an intruder but stopped short and burst out laughing. "It's just a rat," he gasped.
Draco huffed and pushed Harry out of the way so he could look in the last rooms, "Just a rat," he muttered. "Don't come crying to me when it bites you."
The rat advanced towards Harry in hopes of escaping but it froze and fell over with a thud when Harry hit it with a stupefy. He levitated it outside and threw it in the dumpster across the road before he joined Draco up in the last two bedrooms in the house. He found the Slytherin in Regulus Black's room, kneeling amongst the torn down newspaper clippings about Voldemort.
"He was Sirius' brother," Harry said when Draco noticed him standing in the door way.
"I figured as much. Were is he now?"
"Oh," Draco picked himself off the ground. "What are you going to do with all his stuff?"
"Get rid of it, I suppose. I don't think anyone wants any of this," Harry gestured to the newspaper clippings and the Black family crest.
"You could probably salvage the bed and the set of drawers," Draco suggested.
"Probably," Harry sighed again.
"This is more work than I thought."
"We can do it," Draco smiled and drew Harry into a hug. "We are going to have a lot of free rooms though. What do you want to do with them?"
Harry smiled against Draco's shoulder when he said we. "I'm not sure yet. We could rent them out? Or let our friends stay with us. I know that Ron and Hermione are looking for something. So is Neville, which means Blaise will soon follow. Pansy might also want a room."
"That's a nice idea," Draco pulled out of the hug and grabbed Harry's hand. "There's one last room to look at before we meet up with everyone back at the Leaky. I didn't want to go in there without you."
Harry squeezed Draco's hand, "It would have been okay if you did, but thank you." Harry took a breath before he pushed open the door to his God fathers old room. Apart from the ceiling chandelier that had been knocked down and the pictures that weren't held up by permanent sticking charms now lying broken and torn on the floor, the room was the same as Harry remembered.
Draco carefully stepped over the broken light and prodded a muggle poster of a women in a bikini with his wand, "Why isn't she moving?"
Harry bit back a laugh, "It's muggle."
Draco looked at him questionably, "Yeah? So?"
"Muggle posters don't move."
"They don't move? But why?"
"They just don't. Stab it with your wand all you want but it's not going to move."
"Everything in the muggle world sounds boring."
Harry rolled his eyes, "I'm going to take you one day soon."
"Take me where?" Draco asked. He was still frowning at the poster but he had put his wand away.
Draco stole one last look at the poster, then he swiveled and gave his full attention to Harry. "Muggle London?"
Draco chuckled, "But why?"
"Because the muggle world is not boring."
"If you say so. Can we go now please?"
"Sure," Harry smiled.
Harry apparated himself in front of The Leaky Cauldron and waited a beat for Draco to pop up beside him. Sometimes he still couldn't believe that muggles didn't notice the magic all around them. When Draco appeared beside him, he grinned and they entered the pub together.
After New Years and the students who left for the holidays came back to Hogwarts, Draco and Harry decided to keep their relationship quiet- only those who needed to know, knew. But nearing the final exams, the Daily Profit some how got wind of the relationship and the Wizarding world "flipped out." Draco and Harry's friends didn't let what the media and the other students were saying about the two get in their heads, though when the two were in private, Harry would break and cry in Draco's arms while Draco would stroke his hair and tell him nice things.
When the exams were over, Harry hesitantly asked Draco if he would mind if he gave the Quibbler a statement so that they could be left alone. Draco agreed because Luna had always been nice to him, even after what happened during the war. She also happened to be one of their relationship's top supporters. Once Harry's statement was published, the speculation and bad back feed about the two died down. Though there were still quite a few who hated the idea of the Boy Who Lived being involved with a Death Eater, the couple were much happier.
Some of the customers that were sitting at the bar and at the tables gave the couple some strange looks but Harry and Draco ignored them in favor of greeting Hermione, Ron, Neville, Blaise and Pansy with warm smiles and hugs. They ordered drinks and a couple plates of fries to share while they discussed the plans for tomorrow.
"Lets just get this over and done with so we can talk about something better shall we?" Blaise said.
"Agreed," Ron said.
"Talking about their future home isn't bad," Hermione said while she swatted at Ron and Blaise.
"Yes it is," Pansy chipped in with a pout. "It means we have work to do."
"Working isn't bad either," Hermione huffed.
"Yes it is," Draco sighed. Everyone laughed except Hermione, she just crossed her arms and glared at them.
"Lighten up Mione," Harry said. "We do have a lot of work to do on the house." Everyone groaned including Hermione.
"How bad is it exactly?" She asked.
"Pretty bad," Draco frowned. "It's disgusting. I don't understand how you could have stayed there in the condition it was in."
Hermione rolled her eyes at his tone, "It's not like we had much of a choice."
"Anyway," Harry cut in. "Draco and I were thinking that you could all move in with us. If you wanted too. It's just we have plenty of room and you're more than welcome."
No one spoke for a moment, then everyone broke out into grins and started to accept the invitation. "Yes! I'm desperate to move out. My mother is driving me crazy," Pansy exclaimed.
"Oh Harry, Ron and I couldn't impose on you two like that-"
"Yes we can Mione! How soon can we move in?"
Draco laughed, "As soon as we tidy it up a bit." Draco then turned his attention to Blaise, "Are you going to accept our offer or not?"
Neville and Blaise were looking at each other, not sure what to say until Neville said, "What do you say Blaise?" Move into our best friends house with me?"
"I thought you'd never ask," Blaise grinned and gave Neville a kiss on the cheek. Pansy gave a small cheer and leaned across her seat to wrap them in a hug.
"All of us living together, what a nightmare," Ron joked.
"As long as I don't hear your snoring through the wall, we'll be fine," Draco joked back.
Once everyone had settled down from their laughter and excitement, Harry started to tick off his mental list of what they were going to do tomorrow. "First of all, I think we should clean up the kitchen and the dining room. It's not too bad so it shouldn't take too long. If we get it done before lunch, one of us can pop out and grab us some lunch and bring it back.
After that, we can split up and start working on the first floor. I'm thinking that we can do the basics before we do something about the carpet and wallpaper but if we take it out all in one go, it'll be easier but after you guys see the house tomorrow, we can all decide then what we want to do about it.
Hermione, I was hoping you knew something about how to remove permanent sticking charms because Sirius' mother has to go. Also the House-elf heads. No way am I living another day with those ghastly things in my house."
Ron clapped him on the back, "Mate I will personally pull them down for you."
Harry grinned at his best friend, "Thanks Ron. So, is everyone okay with that plan?"
Collective "Yes'" rung out and Harry leaned back in his chair, "So Blaise, what's new?"
Bright and early the next morning, Harry woke Draco up with a hot mug of Coffee and loving kisses. Draco complained about the early hour but he shut up when Harry pulled him into the shower with him. Half an hour later, the two were down stairs eating a big breakfast and talking about Draco's potions apprenticeship. He was going to study at Diagon Alleys new potion shop called Sun Shine. It wasn't the greatest but McGonagall said that after a few months, closer to a year, she would be more than happy to welcome him back to Hogwarts to study under Slughorn. She said that she would happily let Draco come back on September first, but she wanted him to have a break from the castle and have freedom.
"The shop actually smells like Sun Shine. How is that possible?" Draco said through a mouthful of toast. "I mean the sun doesn't have a particular smell, but if it did, the shop would be it."
Harry shrugged, "Maybe they will tell you their secret."
"Are you finished yet? We should get going."
Draco sighed, "Sure. Why don't you run back up stairs and grab the Doxycide and the other supplies while I go pay Tom."
Harry jumped up and gave Draco a peck on the cheek, "Wait for me outside."
Draco flushed at Harry's public show of affection, "Okay. See you soon."
Once Draco had made his way out side and Harry had joined back up with him, with a bag fill of supplies he had gathered to aid in the clean, they appareted to Grimmauld Place and made their way inside the building to the kitchen. "Do you think that we should get started or wait for the others?" Harry asked Draco.
"As much as I want to wait for more helping hands, we should probably start. Lets at least turn the table the right way up so we have a place to put our things."
"Right. You take that side and I'll do this side." Harry took the bag off his shoulder and put it next to the wall while Draco pulled out his wand and got in place to levitate the table. "Ready? Okay, on three. One.. Two.. Three.." They swished and flicked their wands and flipped the table up right.
"You two look great when you work together," Blaise said from the door way.
The table fell its last few inches with a bang. "Zabini! Haven't you heard of knocking?" Draco snapped.
"Sorry," Hermione cut in before Blaise could say something back. "I told them not to make any noise because of the portrait in the hallway. Which I think I know how to take down. Also, where did the tongue-tying curse go? And the dusty Dumbledore?"
"I'm not sure," Harry shrugged and interlocked his fingers with Draco's, who had come to stand beside him. "Yaxley probably found a way to cancel them."
"That makes sense I suppose. I can't think of any other explanation."
"Eh hem, so, what's so bad about this portrait anyway?" Pansy asked from behind Hermione.
"Oh sorry," the Gryffindor girl said and moved out of the way so that everyone could file into the kitchen. "What is so bad about that awful painting, is that is screams at you about your blood-status. It's horrible."
The people who had never heard the obscenities, glanced at each other with raised eyebrows. "Surely it's not that bad..." Neville said shyly.
"I'm sure you'll hear it a few times before Mione manages to take it down, "Ron sighed.
"She'll put up a fight," Hermione grimaced.
"Wonderful," Neville muttered.
"It's alright though," Harry smiled at them. "After today or possibly tomorrow, we will never have to hear that bitch scream again."
Everyone started laughing, which lightened the mood and affectively kicked things into gear for the day. Hermione went off to perform some diagnostic tests on the portrait, Draco, Harry and Pansy stayed in the kitchen to fix the chairs and set them back around the table, before they moved onto join Blaise and Neville in the dining room.
Progress was made as the day wore on. Pansy found a live nest of Puffskeins under the sofa, which but a stop to cleaning while they all ran around to scoop up the fluffy creatures. At lunch time, they all fell tiredly onto the kitchen chairs and made up their minds of they were going to have for lunch. Harry and Hermione went to a nearby Chinese restaurant and brought back everyone's preferred orders. While they were eating Hermione told them that she was close to removing the portrait but she needed someones help to pry her off the wall, she warned them that this is when they would hear the screaming.
"I vote that Blaise does it," Draco suggested.
"He's got my vote," Pansy said through a spoonful of chicken chow-mein.
"Hey! Why do I have to do it?" Blaise cried.
"Because it'll be funny," they said together.
"Ugh, fine. I'll do it! On two conditions."
Pansy narrowed her eyes at him, "What conditions?"
"I get to have your last dumpling."
"Deal," Draco said and snatched the last dumpling off the plate, ignoring Pansy's protests. "Better him than us Pans."
"What's the second one?" Harry asked him.
"The carpet and wallpaper has to go."
By the time next week, the house was much improved. The portrait was long gone- much to the relief of everyone, who had had enough of hearing the vile woman scream, so were the elf heads. The doxies on the second floor were dealt with and Harry had gone to buy new carpet with Blaise to replace the areas he had ripped up(that particular shopping trip took longer than everyone thought because Blaise kept getting distracted by all the muggle things.) Hermione went to a local library and checked out a bunch of books about DIY so that they could place the carpet correctly, she rolled her eyes at them all when they grumbled about reading.
The kitchen was the first room to be restored to its former glory. The oven had been vigorously scrubbed out, so had the pantry and cupboards. They were now freshly stocked with all sorts of groceries.
When the dining room was almost finished, Draco asked Pansy to go to the manor and bring back some of the nicer chairs that had survived, so that they could have some class, as he put it, in the house.
They replaced the carpet and wallpaper in the bedrooms and hallways. When it came to the bedrooms, Draco and Harry claimed the master bedroom on the third floor. Draco let Harry deal with the clean up of the room in favor of making the room with the Black family tapestry presentable. Harry took Draco out and they brought a new bed that they both liked, they also picked up new bedding to match the interior design, "because it has to match Potter. Honestly your decorating taste is just as bad as your fashion sense."
Pansy also claimed a bedroom on the third floor. She kept her room in the color schemes of blacks and greens by applying fresh coats of paint to the old Black furniture.
Blaise decleared that the second floor was his and Nevilles. The Gryffindor had lined their window-sil with little pots of flowers. He also spent his days, digging up the over grown garden in the back, to make room for his own. He planted an apple tree in the center of the garden that he surrounded by the growth of some Dittany, Nightshade and Belladonna. He additionally took a trimming off his Mimbulus Mimbletonia and planted that outside too.
Hermione had called dibs on the other room on the second floor and transformed it into a library. She added her own collection of books from her home and books she had gathered over the years- including her Hogwarts text books, and put them on the shelves. When Hermione told them she was creating a library, Neville jumped at the chance to add his books to hers. Soon the shelves were fill of all sorts of books, much to Hermiones pleasure. Over time, the others would also increase the quanitiy of the library.
The first floor was left Ron and Hermione to convert into their own space. They made a compromise that if Ron could hang a poster of the Chudley Canons in their room, then Hermione could sleep on the right side of the bed and have the floral duvet-cover that she liked.
"Wow," Draco said next to Harry later that night while they were lying in bed. It was two weeks later and the house was now permanently habitiable. After they had moved their possessions in, earlier that day, Harry had given them all keys to the new lock that he had installed. "Is this real?"
"What do you mean?"
"We did it," the blond said and turned on his side to face Harry.
"Oh, yes it's real," Harry smiled. "I'm glad we did. I'm glad you're here." Draco smiled back at him. "Today," Harry continued. "When we were packing up our things from the Leaky to transfer them here, to our home, I was debating with myself wheather to wear a jacket or not because it's the middle of the summer and it's hot but I'm not quite sure I'm ready for the others to know about my scars yet, so I put the jacket on. Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that I loved you. I love you so much Draco and I'm so grateful that you are in my life and that you helped me."
Draco blinked as he absorbed Harrys words, then he broke out into a grin. "I love you too Harry. So much." Harry laughed happily and kissed Draco passionately.
One year later, Harry and Ron had finished their first year of Auror training, while Neville had gone back to Hogwarts to study under Professor Sprout. Draco left Sun Shine potions in early February to study under his Professor and join Neville. The boys were allowed to floo back to their home each night and return to the castle in the morning but they mostly stayed in the castle overnight on weekdays.
Hermione, Pansy and Blasie had gone into the inistry to help make it a better place.
Every Sunday they sat down and had a meal together since it was everyones day off. They would gossip and share their stories from the week. One Sunday, Draco suprised everyone by getting down on one knee and presenting Harry with a ring. "Harry, we have known each other for almost 10 years. The beginning of our relationship was bad, if you put it lightly. Then we got a second chance, I got a second chance to be with you. I want to spend the rest of my life with you. I love you so much Harry, will you do me the great honor of being my husband?"
"Yes!" Harry beamed and Draco slipped a simple but elegant ring onto his finger. Everyone cheered and congratulated them as they kissed. "I love you Draco."
"I love you too Harry."