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Pieces of What by Augurey Pleur
Chapter 11 : Run
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 5


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Chapter 11: Run



He runs and runs without a thought, without control of where he’s headed. He just has to get away from everything.  This can’t be real. This can’t be real.

He doesn't think of slowing down as he turns the corner and crashes head first into none other than Potter, who stumbles back and drops his things. “Ow,” Potter awkwardly laughs. He picks up his belongings and says in Draco’s general direction, knowing that it’s him without needing to ask. “Where were you headed to so fast?”

“I’m going to the library,” Draco lies numbly, too preoccupied to help Potter. He begins to turn away.

“Before class? That’s kinda odd.” Potter tilts his head with a smile, completely unaware.

“Yeah - Need to pick something up.” He had forgotten how easy it is to lie.

“I’ll join you,” he says in his carefree sort of way.

“No.” At the look of confusion on Potter’s face, he continues in a detached sort of way, not really hearing the words, “are you surprised I don’t always want your company? I don’t worship the ground you walk on, Potter.” He says this so easily that it’s crueler than sarcasm.

Instantaneously, Potter’s expression is devoid of any amusement. He frowns at him, trying to mask his emotions. “Yeah, that’s not normally how friendship works.”

Yesterday those words would have made Draco clumsy in his attempt to tease Potter for his sentiment. It would make made him nervous because he couldn't deny the fact that it’s true. But right now, he can’t feel anything. He can't deal with it. “Please, whatever the fuck this is,” he scoffs, making an impatient gesture between them, “it isn't friendship. This is just a way to pass the time in hell.” He can’t help it, the words spew out of him like vomit, but it’s all he can do. The cruel statement keeps him from feeling, keeps him safe and sane at this moment.

Potter crosses his arms with contempt, a stance that Draco knows all too well from their years of rivalry. “Malfoy, I don’t know what’s wrong, but you have to stop taking it out on me.”

“Nothing is wrong,” he seethes, “I’m just sick of you following me around like a lost puppy, sick of you needing my constant company.” He sees the effect his venomous words have on Potter. A twist of betrayal shadows his features, and even though it’s what Draco had intended, he turns his face away, angry with himself that he has to resort to this.  Satisfied that Potter will leave him alone, he turns his back on him to leave.

But he hadn’t anticipated on Potter getting so angry, so when he feels Potter squarely push him away, he stumbles forward ungracefully. “Fine! Go! You coward.”

Draco swirls to face him, a familiar spark of feeling burning viscerally under his skin. Every line on Potter’s angry face warns Draco to back off, but he just doesn't care anymore. He’s not running away. There’s nowhere to run to!  “I’m the coward?” He hisses, taking a step towards him. “You can’t even go outside without holding my hand. Does everyone know, Potter?” He pushes him back hard. “How fucking scared you are?” He then twists his lips cruelly, unable to stop the foul words, “did Ginny know? Is that why she left you? Is that why everyone always leaves?”

The sudden impact of a fist striking his chin shouldn't be so surprising. But he stumbles again, clutching his chin in one hand as he stares at Potter in disbelief. From the look of it, Potter is shocked at his own outburst. “Draco -” he begins to say, but something in Draco snaps and he lunges at Potter with a strangled yell escaping him, all reason and composure be damned.

As they collide into each other, Draco barely registers his fist colliding into Potter’s face. He barely feels Potter’s attacks in the confusing swirl of swinging fists and scuffling feet, the fury between them only growing with each impact. Potter gets lucky and blindly lands a blow on Draco’s neck, causing him to choke violently. Draco desperately pushes him away, trying to catch his breath, but his attempts are futile. Potter’s wild with rage and hitting Draco anywhere he can make contact. All Draco can do to stop him is grab a hold of his collar and push him roughly back against the wall of the corridor. He presses his left hand into the tender skin of Potter’s neck, making him gag. “Listen to me -”

Potter is struggling against his hold, one of his arms caught in between their chest awkwardly. “Fuck you!” With his free hand, Potter yanks Draco’s hair, causing him to yelp in pain. He presses his hand further into Potter’s neck to make him stop.

“Stop! Listen to me.” Potter chokes against the pressure on his neck. It’s only then that he stills his thrashing, seeming to realize that he’s in a compromising position. Draco presses him into the wall forcefully, not letting him go, and swallows the pain that’s threatening to burst his chest open. “You - You always know what’s right.” The raw voice that emerges from him doesn't sound like his own. Potter’s scowl softens marginally into what seems like confusion. “All I know was what he taught me, alright? It’s cruel and it’s cold, but it’s all I know. You understand?” Desperation taints his voice and Potter shakes his head slowly, his lips parting in something like concern. “He - he never beat me, never laid a fucking hand on me.” He grimaces to admit this, “he was a good father, even if he was a twisted person. And even when, when -” his voice breaks and he takes in a rattling breath. A part of him acknowledges Potter’s grip softening in his hair, his other hand reaching up to grasp Draco’s wrist gently. “- Even when he gave me to the Dark Lord, even when he taught me to kill, when he made me ugly and twisted like him, he was my father.”

All of Potter's aggression has been swept away by Draco's words. Draco scarcely realizes he should take his hand off of Potter’s neck, but the steady heartbeat is too comforting to let go. Potter exhales slowly, his breath tickling Draco’s cheeks. “What’s happened?” His green eyes are sparkling in in unbending compassion and concern, rooting Draco to the spot, refusing to let him run.

Draco closing his eyes tightly, his features distorting as the pain in his chest abruptly tightens, his mind on the brink of real understanding that his father is dead. “No,” he says mostly to himself. “I can’t -” He inhales sharply, his whole being trembling with the effort to not fall apart. Potter doesn’t say anything in turn, seeming to understand that Draco can’t be pushed right now. He waits for him to continue, but Draco, he can’t. “I can’t do this.”

Potter then does something he really did not expect, but Draco’s surprised at how much he needed it for so long, wanted it all this time. Harry wraps his arms around Draco, pulling him into what can only be a hug. He stiffens with fear, not understanding what to do in turn, and begins to squirm away in panic. But when Potter stubbornly pulls him in closer, one hand in his hair, the other on his back, urging Draco to rest against him, the little control he has over his emotions breaks. He collapses as all the fucking fear and loneliness that he’s known for far too long escapes him in waves and he shudders against this warmth, this scent. He buries his face into his neck, for the first time not caring to muffle the strange sounds that are escaping him.

Within the mindless pain he feels something slowly emerge. Within their embrace, something within Draco shifts. At first, it falls into place hesitantly, afraid that it'll be swept away. But Draco doesn't dismiss it like he normally would. He keeps his eyes shut and lets it happen, lets it grow and engulf him and rush into his being in long, uneven breaths. It hurts, but in a way that it should. He inhales greedily, the sweet scent of soap and sun and just Harry imprinting his soul.

In his exhale, the rational part of him begins to stir awake. He opens his eyes wide when the reality of the situation hits him: I'm crying on Potter. It's too bizarre, too wrong and frankly mortifying for him to bear. He lets go of Potter as if he burns to the touch and lifts his face up apprehensively.

“It’s okay. It’s okay.” Harry’s face, mere inches from his own, looks sad. Sad for Draco. Potter still has his hand pressed against Draco’s back, the other on the nape of his neck. Draco takes a quick step away, disentangling himself from him, not trusting himself to speak. “Tell me what’s wrong?” Potter whispers. Looking around frantically for an exit, Draco stills when he notices a figure at the end of the corridor, her jaw slacked in shock, staring at them with wide eyes. Oh, fuck. 

"Draco." He snaps his attention back to Potter, with his moist collar and pink cheeks, and can’t help but want to touch him. He looks so inviting that Draco has to suppress a groan.

Horrified, he averts his gaze. "Weasley’s here,” he manages to whisper hoarsely. He turns to run before Potter can stop him.

~~~

“I can’t do this.” Draco can barely say the words, but Harry understands. He knows what it’s like to have unbearable pain, pain that renders words meaningless. He can feel Draco’s uneven breaths through his shaking figure and Harry aches for him. All he wants to do is make the pain go away.

Within that same surge of protectiveness, within the same faded, white light against the darkness, Harry pulls him into a hug. Somehow, he knows this is the only appropriate response. He isn’t surprised when Malfoy feebly struggles, but he won’t let him go. He brings him in closer, pressing his face down, and when Draco’s forehead touches his collar, all his fight and flight leaves him with a choking sound, so that all Draco can do is clutch at Harry’s shirt and sob into his neck. A terrible knot forms in Harry’s throat, so he combs his fingers through soft hair, willing this pain away.

At first Malfoy is gasping, grief strangling in his throat, but slowly, he begins to breathe a little more deeply, a little more slowly. Harry unconsciously matches each of his own breaths to Draco’s, so when Draco’s inhale becomes long and slow, Harry does the same and the scent of autumn and apple make him lightheaded.

He feels Draco tense suddenly, and as he lifts his face up his hot breath rushes onto Harry’s face. “It’s okay. It’s okay.” He has to let him know that there’s nothing wrong about what just happened, that he doesn't have to run. Harry swallows deeply and curls his fingers into the back of Draco’s shirt, not wanting to let him go. But Draco must have sensed this because he pushes Harry away and steps back quickly.

The cold air between them, which is a painful contrast to the warmth they shared, reminds Harry that he still doesn't know what’s happened. He has an idea, but he prefers to hear it from Draco. “Tell me what’s wrong?”

Harry can sense Draco’s distraction and he’s sure the Slytherin is looking for a way out. “Draco -” Don’t go. Harry’s hands, which were so warm moments ago, are now cold as they press against the wall for support.

“Weasley’s here.” Harry stills and he’s shocked he didn’t notice another person nearby. He hears Malfoy taking a step away, and he pushes himself off the wall, ready to follow, not caring that he may not be able to keep up, not caring if Ron sees -

“Harry.” But it isn’t Ron. He pauses and guiltily turns to her, regretfully aware of Draco leaving.

“Hey, Ginny.” He rubs the back of his neck, willing himself to approach her, and waits for her to say something, because he has no idea how to explain this.

“What’s going on?”

He winces at how utterly shocked she sounds, but he hasn’t even processed what just happened. “I er… He was upset.”

“So you -” and she’s laughs now and it’s a disbelieving sound. “So you held him? Like that?”

“Hugged,” he corrects unnecessarily.

“I can’t believe this,” she says after a pause. “But I knew… I knew it.”

“What?”

“You and Malfoy...”

“No!” his cheeks flush and it’s stupid that they should. “We’re just friends.” He’s not sure why he needs to clarify the fact. “Like I said, he was really upset and …Yeah.” I bloody hugged Draco Malfoy, like that.

“It really didn’t look like a ‘just friends’ sort of hug. Look, if you’re gay it would explain a lot,” she says without missing a beat.

“I’m - I’m not!” Harry’s so shocked that he doesn't even bother asking her why she thinks that.

“Then why don’t -?” she stops herself, but the question is heard. Why don’t you want me? Harry grimaces and steps towards her, lost for words. His mind is still too muddled by her statement that he can’t properly comfort her. He awkwardly squeezes her arm and he’s pleased to hear her snort incredulously. “I’ve been so angry at you. I knew this wasn’t working out, but ... when you preferred to spend time with him over me -”

“It’s not like that!” he presses.

“I’m not an idiot, Harry! I know you were meeting him in secret, playing Quidditch or wanking or whatever.”

“Ginny!” Harry’s face is burning, but he’s relieved to hear her snort spitefully.  

After a moment, she sighs and says carefully, “it just made it worse; that you chose him over me.”

“I didn’t -”

“Harry. I see it, okay? Maybe you don’t, but I do.”

“No -” he says automatically, but something about what she’s saying is making him feel faint. The hug they just shared was far more intimate than anything he’s done with Ginny recently. He can still feel his warmth lingering on him, the dizzying effects of being so close to him. He reaches out to the wall beside him for support, trying to catch his shallow breath.

“Yes,” she says stubbornly, but more kindly now. “You have feelings for him.”

He shakes his head slowly but… It’s hard to deny his protectiveness, his yearning for his company, his moments of joy when they accidentally touch. “No,” he says with force, blocking that all out, “it’s not like that.” We’re just friends.

He must look utterly pathetic, because his angry ex-girlfriend is now offering comfort. Ginny places a hand on his back and says in a quiet and serious tone, “Stop lying to yourself, Harry. I see the way you are with him. Just… think of how you feel around him.”

The last few weeks flash before his eyes. With clarity, he can make out the Quidditch pitch, the hospital wing, Hogsmeade, potions class, the spot by the lake, the forest - all these memories are painted with the same feeling that nothing else matters but him. Harry will always seek him out, will always check to see if he’s okay. If he isn’t, Harry takes it upon himself to ease his pain because it hurts too much to do otherwise. And when Draco laughs it’s a sound that heals him. “I …” Then there are those fleeting moments they both ignore, when they push and fight unnecessarily, when a casual touch lingers too long, or when they share the same space and breathe the same air. “No.” He runs his hand through his hair, trying to clear his thoughts of an undeniable truth.

“You say no, but you’re going to run after him, aren’t you?” she asks with sad acceptance.

“Only because something is wrong!” he says quickly as an excuse, but a deep confusion has settled within him that he can’t deal with right now - not in front of her. “Wait - do you know why he’s so upset?” he winces, because he shouldn't be asking her this, but it’s better than her asking him about his feelings.

“He didn’t tell you?” she asks in disbelief. “He just found out his father was murdered… saw it in the morning post.”

Harry nods slowly, the cause of Draco’s disabling grief now apparent. “God, that’s awful.”

“Is it?” Ginny asks seriously.

“You know what I mean. Lucius had it coming, but for Draco to find out like this? It’s awful.” He can’t imagine it. Why wasn’t draco informed beforehand?

“You’re right,” he’s surprised to hear her say. “I hate the bastard, but no one deserves to find out like that, in front of everyone. I admit, I felt a little bad for him. A little. But that doesn't change my mind about him. I don’t trust him, and I think you’re being reckless.” She’s dragged the conversation back to Harry’s apparent feelings, but Harry pretends otherwise.

“He’s not like his father. He’s not planning anything.”

“You don’t know that. You don’t know a lot of things, and you seem intent on ignoring that fact.”

“Like what?” he asks uneasily.

“Has he told you anything about the Death Eaters back in September? He must know something. Has he told you he refused to testify at his father’s trial? What about what Greenberg said -?”

“I don’t want to hear about Greenberg -” Harry cuts her off angrily, surprising them both. But her other questions replay in his head and he knows she’s right. Draco isn’t telling him something out of fear. Harry knows he’s in trouble, even if Draco pretends otherwise. “None of that matters. I trust him, alright?” he says with finality.

“Fine, Harry. You never listened to me before. Why should this be any different?” She sounds angry and disappointed, and Harry crosses his arms tightly to himself, looking away guiltily because she made the effort to talk to him and he messed it up again. He turns to leave, but pauses at her last words, “just be careful?” He offers her a sad smile and nods.

~~~

Draco is lying in his bed, staring at the canopy above him. He’s trying to make sense of what just happened, but none of it seems real. The person he is right now is drastically different from the person who woke up mere hours ago. His father is dead. Potter hugged him, and he didn’t fight him off. He let it happen. His father is dead. None of it seems real.

Closing his eyes to keep himself from crying anymore, he tries to still his mind against the pain. A part of him thinks, guiltily, why should he grieve? He made Draco’s life impossible, and in the last few years, hell. He always had ridiculous expectations and shaped him from an early age to be cold, calculating, and cruel. But he was still his father. In his own way, Lucius Malfoy loved his son. He did want the best for him. He wanted Draco to be strong and powerful, to be the best Malfoy to have ever lived. Draco tried so hard to live up to those expectations, but it was impossible when ‘the best’ was relative.

He should have seen of seen it coming, really. Lucius Malfoy was hated by the whole wizarding word and everyone wanted him dead. He had done too many horrible things for this not to happen. Draco reminds himself for the thirteenth time that he was a piece of shit of a person, so why does this loss hurt so much? Does he even have the right to grieve him?

He lets his arm fall over his eyes, shielding the light away. There is a small comfort that he’d been latching onto. Potter. Harry. Whatever. He’s trying to make sense of that. Usually an experience like that would have horrified him senseless. But now the memory of that moment dulls the pain he feels, and he lets himself be swept away with it: The feeling of Potter’s hands on him. His warm chest pressed against Draco’s. The steady beating of his heart. Fuck. His soft whispered concerns. His eyes that are so green. Draco’s lips twitch to remember the state of his hair after their fight. He remembers clutching at Harry’s untucked shirt in the midst of his rage and sorrow, but also something more.

A light tapping on the window drags him out of his sweet thoughts and he sees one of the Malfoy owls carrying a package. Finally. That must be his Mother. He rushes to let the bird in, and it flies gracefully to his desk. Draco affectionately scratches the top of his head before untying the parcel from his claw.

He knows something is amiss as soon as he opens it, because his Mother’s pendant falls onto his lap. It’s a simple thing, with a single rough diamond in its center, but Draco always found it fascinating as a child and would fondly play with the gold chain.

When Draco was born, his grandmother Druella Black had placed the pendant around her daughter's neck and told her to never take it off, because as long as she wore it, Draco would be safe. The only way the pendant could come off is if she or Draco were dying or dead, or if she chose to take it off herself without someone forcing her. No spell, no potion, or force could remove the pendant. And Draco knows she would never take it off.

Without needing to look at the letter, the message is clear. His mother is in danger. With his features set in cold understanding, he unrolls the small piece of parchment that’s attached, and the implication of the words make him pale: Come home.

~~~

“It doesn’t seem like he’s in, Harry,” Slughorn says a little impatiently beside him.

“Er, thanks, Professor. I’ll just wait for him to get back.” Harry had persuaded Slughorn to show him where Draco’s room is by playing up his inability to navigate, but now the Professor seems to be waiting to steer him back to the main castle. “I’ll be okay to get back.”

“If you’re sure. Goodnight.”

“G’night…” Harry chews on his lower lips apprehensively and waits for his footsteps to fade out before turning back to the door.

He knocks loudly. “Draco,” he calls out. “Are you in?” If he’s there, he doesn't want to see Harry right now, which he can understand. Harry rests his forehead against the cool wood, unsure if he should say something or not. He had debated coming here, but his concern for Draco finally overshadowed the confusion and mortification that Ginny’s words caused.

“I just want to know if you’re okay,” he says quietly, knowing that he won’t be able to hear him if he’s in. In a louder voice, he states, “I’ll come back later.”

He turns to leave, but the familiar scents of autumn and a freshly polished broomstick stop him in his tracks and makes his stomach flop. “How long have you been standing there?”

“Long enough to see the phoenix guarding my door becoming impatient.” He hears Draco lift the silencing charm over his feet and Harry wonders why he needed it to begin with. Draco approaches the door and quietly says the password, “hamburger.” Harry hears the sound of stone crumbling and a door unlocking, before Draco walks into his room.

Harry isn't sure if he should follow, but if Malfoy wanted to be alone, he would have made that perfectly clear. He walks through the door and closes it softly behind him. “Hamburger?” He stands near the door awkwardly, not sure where he should walk.

“Luna keeps raving about them.” He hears Malfoy sigh and his mattress squeak as he sits on his bed. “I’d actually like to try one.” He almost sounds sad.

“Never too late…” Harry takes an awkward step towards him, not enjoying how lost he feels in this new space.

“Five more steps and you’re good,” he offers.

Harry feels oddly nervous as he takes five cautious steps towards him, trying not to look too foolish. He yelps when Malfoy rudely grab the sleeve of his robes to force him to sit on the bed. “Why are you nervous?” Draco asks pointedly, sitting directly beside him.

“I’m not! Just new surroundings throw me off.”

“I can give you a proper tour if you like.”

“Thanks, I’m okay.” He fiddles with the sleeves of his shirt. “Are you? -” he blurts out. “Okay, that is.” He winces from how lame that sounds. Of course he isn’t okay.

“I’ve been better,” he says softly, but quickly changes the topic. “I was looking for you on the pitch. It’s Friday, Potter.”

“I thought you wouldn’t want to go.”

“I waited,” he sounds annoyed, to which Harry can’t help but smirk a bit.

“Well, you found me. Do you still want to go?”

“No.”

A thick silence falls between them and Harry bites his lower lip nervously.  He’s unsure if he should say anything, but he knows to pretend that everything is alright is not possible. “Draco… I’m really sorry.”

Draco shifts beside him, and Harry can’t make out what that means. When he responds, it’s in a voice that’s far away, detached of any real emotion. “It’s okay if you’re not. I know who he was.”

“No, that doesn't matter right now. He was your father.” He gently bumps his shoulder against Draco’s, and is pleased when Draco bumps back.

“Tell me something about him,” Harry says suddenly, surprising himself. He doesn’t actually care to learn about Lucius Malfoy, but he thinks it may help Draco to remember.

“You don’t have to do this, Potter.”

“Harry -” Harry reminds him, “and I know I don’t, but I also know that you have the right to grieve your father, regardless of who he was.”

Draco doesn't say anything for a moment, and perhaps he doesn't want to share, but at last he breaks the silence with a thick and low voice, “thanks, Harry.” After a pause, he continues, “I guess, my summers traveling with him were good memories. He - he took me to see all these places; the Vampire Ruins, the Great Pyramids, the Stonehenge... beautiful places. He taught me all sorts of things.” His tone becomes dry with contempt, “of course, most of what he taught me is illegal. He was a big fan of the Dark Arts...”

Harry wonders the extent of Draco’s knowledge of the Dark Arts, but it feels rude to ask. Perhaps the question shows on his face because Draco continues, “I was always too afraid to properly submerge myself in that. My father though, he was definitely not shy with it. There are consequences for using that kind of magic, and I think he lived with them. I think it’s the biggest reason he became that person, the Death Eater. I chose to believe that before all that, before You-Know-Who, he was a good man.”

“What makes you think that?” Harry asks with genuine curiosity.

“Just from the stories I’ve heard from my -” he abruptly stops talking, the word stuck in his throat. “- my mother,” he finishes in a pained voice. Harry has to stop himself from reaching out to him, so he clasps his hands together and doesn't say anything. He wonders why mentioning his Mother should be so painful. Maybe her grief cuts deeper than Draco’s. “I know it’s foolish to believe that.” Draco sighs and flops back against the bed, his legs still dangling off to the side. “But I have to. If he was always like that, then what’s stopping me from being just like him?”

“You’re choices,” Harry replies. He already knows Draco isn’t like his father, but to hear him articulate his doubts is significant. It means that Draco’s afraid to end up like him; it means he’ll make better choices than his father did. The revelation causes something like pride to swell in his chest.

“Well, then I’m already fucked, aren’t I? What’s it say about me when I followed perfectly in his footsteps?”

“It means you made a mistake.” He lies back into the bed as well, until he’s resting on his left side, one arm tucked under his head as he faces Draco. “You saw the man your father became, and you don’t want that for yourself. That’s what matters now.” He smiles as that familiar light glows softly in front of him, hesitant and trying to hide, but definitely there.

Draco mirrors his posture and lies on right side, facing Harry. “What is it that you see?” Draco asks suddenly, catching Harry off guard. “Not in the literal sense… but I get the feeling you can see something. I see it in your eyes sometimes and I see it now, like you’re recognizing something.”

The soft glow in the darkness vibrates a little and he stares at it longingly, letting its familiar warmth wash over him. “It’s hard to explain - It looks like light but doesn't behave like it. It has a mind of its own, its own feelings. I can tell when it’s shy or calm by the way it tries to avoid my attention. When it’s overwhelmed, it lashes out at me and I can almost feel it. And even though I know it’s all in my head, I can't help but want to know it - to just reach out and touch -” It’s so close to him now that Harry, as if possessed, reaches out to it and his fingertips fall on a warm, smooth cheek. He freezes and is about to snatch his hand back in embarrassment, but Draco leans into the touch and Harry forgets how to breathe.

Draco moves his cheek into Harry’s right hand, his chin nestled into his palm. It feels so good to touch him that Harry forgets himself and lets his fingertips tickle over his skin, lets them trail down into the crevasse between his cheekbone and his closed eye. He can almost see the pale eyelashes as he brushes over them. His index fingertip explores the length of his slender nose. He can make out the shape of an elegant eyebrow. When he trails his hands over the side of Draco’s face, he smiles to feel short stubble.

He doesn't know how it’s happened, but he finds himself delicately holding his chin, tilting Draco’s face towards his as he exhales a ragged breath. His heart is stuck in his throat and he’s sure that Draco could hear it, just like Harry can hear Draco’s breath becoming shallow when his thumb slowly trails over his lower lip.

Draco doesn’t flinch or pull away, instead his lips part, just barely, and a soft sigh escapes him when Harry edges his face closer to his. Draco’s breath warms Harry to the core and he surrenders into it. It should shock him when Draco’s lips press into the bruise on his cheek, when Draco bumps his nose into Harry’s, but nothing has ever felt so right and so good. Closing his eyes and giving into this kindness, his lips find Draco’s and press into them gently as a slow breath rolls out his lungs.

He tastes like apple and something else that’s entirely Draco, and fuck it all, it’s intoxicating and Harry needs more of it. He opens his mouth and presses his lips closer into his, moaning when Draco does the same. His hands begin to wander, through soft hair and over the steady heartbeat along the side of his neck. He feels something cold and metallic, like a necklace around Draco’s neck, and tugs at it with curiosity. Harry instantly regrets doing that because Draco breaks the kiss with a grimace.

“Don’t-” Malfoy breathes, as if in pain, and it makes Harry wince and his hands feel clumsy.

“Why?” He waits for him to elaborate, but he’s not sure if he can face his disappointment or rejection.

“This is wrong.” It sounds like regret and Harry takes his hands off of him quickly, the words stinging him.

“It’s not,” he simply says. Because when they were kissing, nothing in the world was wrong, and now that they’ve stopped, it feels like his heart is being crushed. “It isn’t wrong.”

“You don’t understand. I can’t -” Draco holds his words in, holding in a secret. “We just can’t.”

The rejection cuts through him sharply, it keeps him quiet now as he sits up. The statement shouldn’t hurt so much to hear, but it does and Harry can’t bear it. Harry can’t be here because every moment with him is now torture, now that he knows whatever he’s feeling is one-sided and wrong. He feels like a fool for coming here, for wanting him. “I have to go.”  He makes a move to leave but Draco catches his wrist.

“No. Stay -” Draco says and Harry hides his face from him, closing his eyes because he can’t stand hearing the regret in his voice. Draco feels bad for what’s happened, and it makes Harry feel sick to his stomach.

“Why should I stay?” he asks, not bothering to face him.

Draco has nothing to say. Harry nods grimly in understanding and gets up to leave. He reaches the door and says without turning to face him, “let’s forget this ever happened.” He opens the door and pauses there, foolishly hoping that Draco will change his mind. He hopes that Draco will ask him to stay because he wants the same thing Harry wants. He hopes he’ll realize it isn’t fucking wrong. But nothing. With a heavy heart, he closes the door behind him.


~~~

A/N: Alright. It's been a while since I've posted. The only real reason is because I don't know if people are actually reading this story.  If you are following this story, please let me know you exist. As a new writer, I kinda feel like I'm stumbling around blindly – not unlike Harry.

Reviews are very important to me, and here’s why: I want to become a better writer. The only way this will happen is if my readers are being honest about what they think or feel. What makes you laugh or cringe? What moves you and what just doesn't work? I’m really not looking for praise (Although that’s always welcomed), I’m more looking for some constructive criticism. I realize that’s very hard to give, but please try your best. I promise I'll be as honest as I can in what I write, but in exchance, please be honest with me. :)





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