Chapter 2 : The Safe House
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Until next time, I hope you enjoy this chapter! :)
Lysander barely slept, though whether it was because of the task he had been given or that he was still embarrassed about what happened last night, he wasn't sure. He was awake before the alarm for the first time in two months and quickly switched it off before it could make too much noise, not knowing whether or not Hugo was still sleeping. He knew Hugo had been told to be up by six, too, but Lysander didn't want to wake him himself.
Unlike yesterday, Lysander took his time to get ready, starting with his shower. He shut his eyes as the water ran down his body and pushed his hair back with his hands, clearing his head. When he was certain he had spent as much time as he could with time to get dressed before Harry came, Lysander turned off the water and stepped out, drying himself with his towel before wrapping it around his waist.
He walked across the small bathroom to the sink and wiped his hand over the mirror so he could see his reflection. He winced as he realized how much his hard work had taken its toll; his eyes were dull and lifeless with bags underneath due to lack of sleep. Making a mental note to use a glamour when he was back in his room, he stepped back to see the rest of his body. He was fit, the job required it, but he certainly wasn't as defined as Hugo. Lysander wondered briefly what Hugo did to look the way he did. Not that he cared about that. He ran a hand through his hair and groaned; it was dark, like his father's, and lay flat. He never did anything with it, not having time. He thought about what it would look like if he styled it like Hugo did and pulled his hair up, imagining it was spiked, before dropping it down again. He was being ridiculous, comparing himself to Hugo. They were just different people. They did different things, Hugo had the time to work on his appearance, and that was okay. Lysander chose to be an Auror, instead of a Naturalist like his parents or a Dragon-Tamer like his twin brother, Lorcan. He accepted the long hours and hard work four years ago when he started Auror training.
Groaning, he brushed his teeth quickly and left the bathroom. Once in his room, Lysander removed the towel and went straight to his draw for clean underwear. He stopped briefly when he thought he heard something, but when he turned around no one was there. The bathroom door shut and he knew then that Hugo was awake.
He was in his wardrobe, hidden from view, when he heard Hugo leave the bathroom. He dressed slowly and, when he was sure he couldn't do anything else in his room, he walked out and into the living room. As his entered, so did Hugo, who came out of the kitchen. "Morning."
"Morning," Hugo replied, taking a sip from Lysander's plain black mug. "I hope you don't mind, I kind of raided your kitchen."
"Not at all," Lysander assured, moving to the chair. "There's nothing in there."
Hugo chuckled as he walked past to sit on the couch. "Yeah, I realized. All you have is coffee," he said, holding up the mug.
"That's for when my brother, Lorcan, comes to visit and there's so much of it because he rarely visits," Lysander explained and pulled a face. "I hate coffee."
"You're a tea-drinker?" he nodded. "Me too, really. But coffee will do." His stomach rumbled loudly. "I hope there's food at this safe house."
Lysander laughed, forgetting the nervousness he felt before. "They're not gonna leave us without food."
"You never know," Hugo replied, though he laughed, too. "You Aurors always seem so busy; you're bound to forget something one day." Lysander resisted the urge to roll his eyes and inform the other man that it was just him. "So, Ly, as Uncle Harry calls you, boys or girls?"
Lysander felt his cheeks go red, last night coming back in his mind. He squirmed, refused to look Hugo in the eye and coughed awkwardly, before whispering meekly, "What?"
Hugo rolled his eyes. "Do you like boys or girls?"
"I know what you meant, why are you asking? Was it not obvious after last night?"
Hugo ran a hand through his hair, brushing it out of the way, as he chuckled. Lysander chose to watch that instead of the man's face. It was darker than the rest of the Weasleys' famous red hair, his mother's genes had won with Hugo, giving him a dark shade of brunet, though, thankfully, his hair was straight. "I thought so, at first, but it could easily have been because it's been a while since you've had someone stay. If I were a girl, you'd still be nervous. So, I thought I'd ask."
Lysander cleared his throat, still slightly embarrassed. "Boys," he finally answered. "You?"
"I like to play on both sides," he said, winking. Lysander narrowed his eyes and turned his head slightly. "Both, I'm bisexual," he clarified, thinking he misunderstood.
"I got what you meant," Lysander murmured.
"Then what's with the face?"
The young Auror turned back to face him properly and stood up. "Harry's coming."
Hugo stood up too, confused. "Huh?" The fireplace roared into life and Harry stepped out. "How did you know that?"
Hugo rolled his eyes and glared, about to say something when Harry stepped in, explaining. "He put a charm on the fireplace which tells him when someone is coming. Since I'm the only one coming, he knew it was me."
"Oh," he said. He turned to Lysander, "Why couldn't you have just said that?"
He turned to him, confused, "I did; magic."
Harry watched the two of them, looking both amused and worried. "I can tell you two are going to have fun."
Lysander narrowed his eyes at his godfather, "Was that meant to be sarcasm?"
"I'm honestly not sure," Harry said, shrugging. "How was your night, Hugo?"
He checked his watch; five minutes. "Got everything?" Harry pulled out a blue pen while the boys put on their jackets and picked up their bags. When they were standing in front of him, he held out the pen for them to hold on to. As soon as Harry's watch said half past, the pen glowed and Lysander's apartment disappeared.
They let go of the pen as soon as they touched the floor. Lysander looked out of the window to see a beach. He could feel a light breeze and smell the ocean air. Looking up, he noticed the open window. Then he felt someone's hair in his face and noticed that Hugo had followed him and was leaning against him to look out of the window. His arm was draped over his right shoulder, Hugo's cheek touching his own. Lysander turned his head to the left, Hugo still holding onto him. "Where are we?"
"Spain," Harry answered. "I’m not telling you where abouts; safety reasons. I got this place for Ginny and I for when we wanted to get away from everything and it was perfect for a safe house; if I can hide here, you can hide here."
Harry walked over to the window. "This house and everything you can see is yours. You can't go past that wall; that's where the Fidelius Charm ends. You can use the beach, there's a pool in the garden, the charm doesn't go past the gate," he pointed behind him. "The kitchen is fully stocked, there's emergency money in the safe and there's a village about five minutes away if you turn left out of the gate."
"We can go out?" Hugo asked.
"Lysander can go out," Harry corrected. "When necessary. Unfortunately you can't use magic to make food. I don't know how long you'll be here and the food you have won't last forever."
"Will that be safe?"
"This is your first assignment. You've never been out in the field before, no one knows you," Harry explained. "Plus, no one knows about this place, so no one will even think of coming here to look for Hugo. Even if they do, they won't think to look for you. So, yes, it's safe for you to go out and get supplies. But stay on your guard anyway, alright?"
Lysander nodded and Harry took out another pen, black this time. “Magic can't be used here, so it's the Muggle way for you, too. Only I can get in with a port key, so don't expect anyone else. I'll check in from time to time." The pen glowed. "I'll see you both soon."
Both men shouted good bye as Harry left and Hugo looked out the window again. "Wow, all of this to ourselves. Protective custody might not be so bad after all." He turned back to Lysander, "I should be at the wrong place at the wrong time more often."
The Auror opened his mouth to comment when he started to yawn. "You're tired," Hugo stated. "Get some sleep and I'll make breakfast. Do you like scrambled egg?"
Lysander smiled as Hugo took off his jacket and walked into the kitchen. "Yeah."
"It'll be ready for when you wake up," Hugo promised. "Sleep."
Taking his bag, Lysander went to leave the room to pick a bedroom and get some sleep. "Oh, Ly! Not that I mind, but you might want to shut your door next time you're getting changed." Lysander stopped and turned, blushing. So he did hear something. Hugo was standing by the kitchen door, grinning. "One more thing," he said, as he stepped into the kitchen. "Wow."
Lysander couldn't help but smile at the compliment.
As soon as he finished his breakfast, Hugo washed his plate and wondered around the safe house, getting used to where everything was. Everything was white and blue; that was the first thing he noticed. The walls, the tiled floor, the kitchen counter, the furniture. It was calm and serene, just what Hugo needed. He glanced out into the garden to inspect the pool; it was bigger than the garden at his family home. The actual garden was huge. Apart from the pool and a few deck chairs, it was empty. No swings, no toys, no Quidditch supplies. It was definitely just where Harry and Ginny came to relax and not for kids. Did they never bring his cousins or did they buy this house when they were older? He was tempted to take a swim, but his desire to see the rest of the house won. There was plenty of time, he reasoned.
Stepping back inside, Hugo walked back into the living room and picked up his bag. He climbed the stairs and walked down the hall to find a room. He stopped when he heard a snore and looked into the first bedroom on his left. Lysander was fast asleep on top of the bed, clothes and shoes still on. He had left his door open again (he was obviously used to living alone). He let out another loud snore and Hugo smiled and closed the door, before moving on the find his own room. He took the one next door and threw his bag on the bed. Then he went downstairs and out to the beach.
Hugo needed to think. He didn't know what he was going to do now that magic was impossible to use here. He understood why he couldn't, but it hindered his routine. A routine he needed to maintain if he was going to stay with Lysander. He had something else that would work; he just hoped there was enough. Hugo sighed and rubbed his right shoulder.
The sound of the sea crashing against the shore woke Lysander. He rolled onto his back and stretched, groaning, and looked at the clock; it was nine o'clock, he had been asleep for just over two hours. Next to the clock were two pictures; one of Harry and Ginny on their wedding day and one of James, Albus and Lily all in their Hogwarts uniforms on Lily's first day. He hadn't noticed when he entered the room, he had just wanted to sleep, but this room was Harry and Ginny's bedroom. He stood up and walked to the window to see out to the beach, wondering if he should switch rooms; it felt strange to be in his godfather's room, wrong even. This was where Harry came to be alone; it felt like an invasion of privacy. Movement in the corner of his eye snapped Lysander from his thoughts and he could see Hugo by the water.
He jogged down the stairs, to the door, and, taking off his shoes and socks and rolling up his jeans, Lysander stepped out onto the beach and walked along the water to where Hugo was. He stopped just behind him and watched as he did movements with his hands.
Hugo turned in his movements and stopped when he saw Lysander standing in front of him. He dropped his hands. "Hi. You're awake."
Lysander nodded. "Hi."
"There's food for you in the oven," he said pointing to the house, suddenly shy.
"I'll get it later," Lysander shrugged. "What were you doing?"
Hugo scratched the back of his neck. "It's called Tai Chi. I learnt while in China for a couple of months. There are different forms, but I meditate. It calms me."
Lysander wondered what Hugo did that he would need calming, but ignored it for now. "It looks cool."
Hugo grinned now, back to his old self. "Thanks. My sister thought I was strange for liking it."
"Well, your sister's strange for marrying Malfoy, so I think you're okay."
Hugo laughed, Lysander joining in after a second. "Funny, you and I are going to get on great. You wanna try?"
"I'd love to." Hugo held out his hand for Lysander to take and pulled him lightly forward so Hugo was standing behind him. He wrapped his hands over Lysander's and stood close so his lips were near his ear.
Hugo breathed out slowly, his breath tickling Lysander's ear, and he tried to suppress as shiver.
"Cold?" Hugo whispered. Lysander could only shake his head. Time seemed to pass slowly as Hugo showed Lysander some basic meditation, whispering instructions into his ear. When Hugo finished, he moved his hands up to Lysander's shoulders, then down to his hips. "You're a fast learner. Do you feel calmer?"
"Yeah," he muttered, slightly awed that it actually worked. "Thanks," he said, turning around, Hugo's hands still around his waist. "I'd like to learn more."
Hugo smiled, "If you want, we're not going anywhere. But not now," he moved his hands to his sides. "I've no doubt you're hungry." As if on cue, Lysander's stomach rumbled. Laughing, Hugo turned him around and they walked back to the house. "So, you've just finished your Auror training?"
"Two months ago," Lysander answered.
"So, that makes you twenty two?" he asked. Lysander nodded. "You're practically a baby. Yet here you are."
"I'm not that young!" he protested. "Whatever you think I'm too young for, I assure you, you're wrong!"
"Not too young for what?" Hugo turned and winked.
"Lots of things," the younger man stammered. "I was just speaking in general, you know?"
Chuckling, Hugo shook his head. "I wasn't implying you were too young."
Misunderstanding, Lysander turned to him. "You're not old. You're only thirty."
Hugo turned to face him properly, so he was walking backwards, looking outraged. "First of all, I'm twenty nine, thank you very much. Secondly, I was not implying I was old." He poked the boy in the chest. "What the hell do you think I'm too old for?" He was smirking now, Lysander didn't like it.
"Nothing! I was just saying!" Lysander sighed. "What did you mean?"
Hugo relaxed but kept his finger on his chest. "I meant that you're young, you can do anything you want, and instead you're here, babysitting a twenty nine year old." He stressed his age. "Does that not bother you?"
Lysander thought for a second, before shaking his head. "Not really. I've wanted to be an Auror since I was a kid, I want to help people. If staying with you keeps you safe, then I'm helping."
Hugo cocked his head to the left, as if thinking, then nodded once. "Okay."
It was silent the rest of the way, they didn't talk until they reached the kitchen and Hugo turned on the oven to heat Lysander's breakfast. "You're not like your parents."
It wasn't a question and Hugo turned around, but he didn't look confused. "What do you mean?"
Lysander looked pensive, "Your mum rationalizes everything; she points out all the things that could go wrong. Your dad jumps to conclusions at everything, at least it feels like everything, maybe it's just everything I do. I don't think he trusts me." He pulled a face, remembering something. "I remember when I was nine; it was Harry's birthday party and I said I wanted to be an Auror for the first time. My parents were supportive, Harry and Ginny were supportive. But your mum told my mum that they should sit me down and have a serious chat about what it would be like and the percentage of people who actually pass. Your dad didn't think I would have what it takes. I'm not like Lorcan." Hugo coughed and Lysander looked up quickly, snapping out of his memory. "You're not like that. Even Rose has some of those traits."
"Well, I'm not like Rose," Hugo smiled sympathetically. "While my parents spent their time saving the world, one criminal and house elf at a time, and my sister spent her time with Albus, James and Malfoy, I was sent to Uncle George." He took out Lysander's plate, placed it down in front of him and sat down beside him. "According to my mother, Uncle George was the only one who could work and look after me, since he owned his own shop. George and Angie were the parents I looked up to; who I talked to when I needed to. Fred and Roxy were the siblings I played with. Don't get me wrong, I love my family, we're just not the same." He turned to face Lysander, grinning, "At least I gained a sense of humor." He pointed to the plate, "Eat. I'll be in the living room." Hugo took his hand and squeezed it tightly, then left.
Lysander wondered if Hugo felt a spark too.
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