Title: Five Times Draco Accidentally Stopped Harry’s Nightmares (and one time it was deliberate)
Pairing(s): Harry/Draco (brief hints at Ron/Hermione, Harry/Ginny and Draco/OC)
Summary: After the final battle Harry suffers from nightmares and flashbacks he can’t shake off.
Disclaimer: All Harry Potter characters herein are the property of J.K. Rowling and Bloomsbury/Scholastic. No copyright infringement is intended.
Epilogue compliant? Set pre-Epilogue (might be compliant)
Word Count: 3800
Author's Notes: Happy Holidays to the comm, an extra little fic for everyone and I hope it fits someone's wants in a Harry/Draco fic *g* Thank you to my beta S (all mistakes are mine).
The night after the final battle, nobody seemed able to leave Hogwarts. Parents arrived and tried to remove some of the children, but without ever really talking about it, almost everybody stayed anyway. The Great Hall was emptied of furniture and the bodies were moved to other rooms, carefully tended to by sombre students, and mattresses and sleeping bags covered the floor of the Hall as they had done once before.
The Weasleys had taken over one corner of the Hall, and Harry found himself surrounded by them, but even when the whole room was quiet, he couldn’t even begin to sleep. He felt bone weary, but every time he closed his eyes flashes of the day came back (Snape’s blood all over the floor, Lavender lying pale and weak, George’s face, Remus’s body)
Quietly, unwilling to wake the Weasleys from their sleep -- natural or potion induced -- he slipped out of his sleeping bag and moved to the edge of the Hall. The ceiling showed a beautiful, calm night sky, and Harry wondered how any illusion of a moon could shine down so peacefully after all of the destruction, and he felt a wave of nausea wash over him so powerfully his legs gave out.
A hand grasped his elbow and steadied him, but as Harry turned to thank his helper, he gasped.
“Malfoy? What are you still doing here?!”
Harry could feel his face twisting as he looked at Draco’s pointed face; he wanted to cause him pain. He wanted to make Draco feel as badly as Harry was feeling, but even as he thought that, the grey look on Draco’s face made him remember the way the Malfoys had sat, quietly, apart from everyone else earlier.
“We don’t have anywhere to go.” Draco’s tone seemed to dare Harry to pity him. “McGonagall said we shouldn’t leave anyway.”
Harry noticed then that Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy were lying, fast asleep, by the door. Harry opened his mouth to say something, but the expression on Draco’s face stopped him. As he looked at his sleeping parents, Draco’s angular face seemed to have softened for a moment.
“I don’t think they expected to survive this day.” The words were so quiet Harry almost missed them. “I suppose,” -- Draco stiffened beside him -- “I suppose this might be the last time we’re together if they take my father back to Azkaban.”
Harry held his breath for a moment; it seemed Draco had forgotten who he was talking to completely, and Harry found himself looking at Draco again. He tried, just for a moment, to imagine how it would have felt to have reached the safety of the end of the war and then lost Hermione or Ron; the thought was too horrible for words.
“She saved my life.” Draco turned sharply and looked at Harry, his face a picture of surprise at Harry’s words. “Out in the forest, she saved my life and I’ll tell them that.”
Draco’s face was frozen, but his eyes studied Harry’s face. For a moment Draco seemed far older than Harry knew he was.
“Thank you.” The words were bitten out, as if they were painful to him. “Don’t think this means I need your pity though.”
Harry heard the sneer in his voice but could see it didn’t quite reach Draco’s eyes. He nodded in response and made his way back across to the sleeping Weasleys, feeling oddly lighter.
The trials seemed to go on forever. Harry wasn’t technically needed at all of them, but it seemed to make people feel better to see The Boy Who Lived (twice!) at these events and it wasn’t as if he had anything else to do now school was finished.
It was inevitable, really, that he was going to fall asleep at one of the hearings eventually. Whilst Death Eater trials sounded as if they should be exciting, in reality they were often repetitive, and the excuses given certainly gave Harry a sense of déjà vu and Harry hadn’t been sleeping well for months.
Sleep meant nightmares for Harry; no Dreamless Sleep Potion seemed to affect the horrifying images that still flashed through his mind. He suspected a large enough dose might, but somehow it felt like cheating to drug the images away, and so even as he was drifting into sleep, he felt the chain of the horcrux locket tight around his neck as if it was real again, choking the breath from him.
A sharp kick to his ankle recalled him to his surroundings only to find the angry face of Draco Malfoy in front of him.
“Sorry to bore you, Potter.” Draco spat out the name.
“What do you care anyway, Malfoy?” Harry rubbed his ankle and scowled.
“That man,” -- Draco nodded at the stand -- “is Millicent’s uncle. He taught me how to play chess.”
“He also terrorised and murdered a family of Muggles and killed two students we used to be at school with!”
Harry glared at Draco and was surprised to see a flush rise on his skin.
“I know. It’s just…”
Draco took a deep breath, as if he was going to continue, and then turned back to the trial a look of determined concentration on his face.
An hour later, the sentence of life imprisonment was issued and the courtroom started to empty. As he got up to leave, Harry felt a hand on his sleeve and looked down at Draco.
“I burned the chess set he gave me.” Draco seemed to be looking through him not at him. “Every time I saw it, all I could see was the look on his face when Madame Burbage was…”
Harry inhaled sharply; they’d found her body buried at Malfoy Manor; the Malfoys had been very helpful in revealing some of the bodies.
“He deserves…” Draco broke off again and shook himself. “He’s a man, and if you’re going to watch him be sentenced to life imprisonment you can at least stay awake.”
Harry nodded, staring in amazement at Draco, but he couldn’t think of an answer.
St Albans, it turned out, was a very pretty town. Harry thought Ginny would probably love to look around its market given half a chance, and Harry thought he and Ron could have had quite a good evening enjoying its many pubs.
Of course, none of that was very relevant now. Standing in the middle of an enormous park. In the cold. And the dark. And the rain.
“Remind me why we have to do this now again?”
Draco grimaced and pressed his hand against another stone, muttering an incantation under his breath.
“Because,” he snapped as he moved to another stone. “My esteemed ancestor decided a great place to hide his less legitimate belongings would be in the ruins of a Roman city in a park used by hundreds of Muggles every day and your,” -- Draco broke off to try the incantation again -- “your precious Ministry won’t let us use a Muggle repelling spell or Confundus, so instead we have to come here when nobody is around.”
With a yelp, Draco fell through the doorway that had suddenly appeared in what had been, up until a moment before, a solid section of Roman town wall.
There wasn’t much time to talk about anything other than work then. Much as Harry hated to admit it, Lucius, Narcissa and Draco were all using as much of their knowledge of the Dark Arts to help the newly enlarged Auror department, and he’d rather be here with Draco than either of the others.
They soon found the hoard of objects and cast the necessary containment spells, but, unsurprisingly, when they tried to Disapparate with them, they discovered the location was shielded.
“Well we’ll just have to drag them out then.” Draco seemed thrilled by the idea. “You ought to be good at brute force; that’s a Gryffindor strong point, isn’t it?”
Draco stormed off down the winding corridor, but as Harry followed, he found himself looking into the dark, twisting corridor and seeing instead the path to the Shrieking Shack and hearing Lord Voldemort’s voice.
There was blood on his hands; he was sure of it, and he tried desperately to wipe it off but couldn’t. Hands were grabbing at him, pulling him down, and he couldn’t shout or scream, couldn’t make a noise that might give away his presence.
Harry shook his head; he felt dizzy and he couldn’t remember where he was.
“Potter, you imbecile, stop FIGHTING me and snap out of it.”
Harry’s heart was beating far too fast, and he couldn’t breathe, but slowly the words were getting through, and he registered the face above him wasn’t that terrifying pale mask with the awful eyes, but Draco Malfoy.
Harry stuttered and tried to grasp for breath, but Malfoy had him pinned to the ground, and as he came back to himself and tried to push up, Draco started shaking him.
“What the hell was that?! Is he… you were clutching at your head -- I thought he was supposed to be gone--”
The real terror in Draco’s voice started to register, and Harry shook his head.
“Not… just a nightmare… not him..”
Draco stared at him and then shook him hard.
“A bloody nightmare! Just a nightmare and you had to have it here in the mud and try to frighten me out of my wits, you bloody…”
Harry surged up and pushed until he was on top of the now punching and scratching Draco. They struggled for dominance; Draco shouting and cursing Harry’s stupidity all the while, until Harry snapped.
“Shut up! Just SHUT UP! I can’t stop nightmares I don’t bloody CHOOSE to have them!”
And kissed Draco.
It was hard and fast and painful as Draco’s nails dug into Harry’s skin, and Harry crushed his mouth against Draco’s, not caring if his teeth scraped Draco’s lips until he tasted blood. They sprang apart at the taste of blood between them; identical looks of horror on their faces. There was only just enough light for each to see the outline of the other’s face, and the only sound in the corridor was their heavy breathing.
After a moment, Harry reached for the bag of artefacts and started walking out into the night. Neither of them said a word.
Malfoy Manor still made Harry’s skin crawl. He knew that teams of Aurors and Unspeakables had been over every inch and that it was clear of any Dark influences now, but his memories of it were too vivid to let him be calm.
Harry nodded at Draco, standing alongside his parents as they welcomed guests to their party.
It was a horrible place, too manicured and perfect with all of its horrible history hiding just under the surface, and it was enough to make anyone’s skin crawl. It had nothing to do with the way that Draco was still watching him as Harry walked away.
Harry felt him watching later, when he got a new drink, and when they went in for supper, and again as he danced with a radiant looking Ginny.
Excusing himself, Harry went to get some fresh air and found Hermione, leaning against a wall, looking very white.
“Harry.” Hermione tried to smile at him. “I take it you’re hating this as much as I am?”
Harry shrugged and stepped outside to lean next to her.
“It’s not my first choice for a great night’s entertainment.”
“I just keep seeing that woman,” Hermione stiffened, as she always did when trying to say something she thought she ought to be able to. “Bellatrix bloody Lestrange. And it doesn’t help that Mrs Malfoy looks like her or that they’ve still got the same pictures on the wall.”
Hermione shuddered, and Harry moved so that he could tangle his fingers with hers, trying not to picture the scene that Hermione was so clearly seeing.
“I was determined not to let it bother me,” Hermione rested her head on Harry’s shoulder for a moment. “It’s so stupid, and it’s all over now and I know I’m safe, but I just keep thinking about it, and it’s as if Luna and the others are still somewhere in a dungeon beneath our feet.”
Harry squeezed her hand and tried to keep his voice steady.
“She’s actually in there, perfectly safe and sound.” Harry paused. “Well, mostly. I think she’s going to have bruises from Ron standing on her feet.”
He felt Hermione nod and take a deep breath.
“I ought to go back in and rescue her, I suppose.”
“That’s not a bad idea, I don’t think those two should be left together for any length of time, and you can see for yourself that she’s really okay.”
Hermione hugged him tightly.
“Thanks, Harry.” She said, smiling faintly. “Days like these, I think you might have the emotional range of a whole tea set.”
He grinned back as she walked inside, but as soon as she was out of sight, the grin faded. A house-elf walked across his line of vision, and he was back to that day and Dobby standing there alive in front of him.
“Just get a grip, Potter,” Harry muttered under his breath, trying to breathe deeply, but he could feel himself shaking and then someone crashed into him from behind.
“Out of my way!”
Draco Malfoy stormed past, jaw tight and eyes sparkling with rage.
“Oi, Malfoy!” Harry followed him and grabbed his shoulder. “Do you always treat your guests as punching bags?”
“Just you.” Draco shook his shoulder in Harry’s grip and turned to face him.
“And do you have to keep staring at me all evening? You’re driving me mad!”
“Me, staring at you?!” Harry gasped furiously. “As if you haven’t been watching me since I walked through the door, you little bastard!”
Draco swore and pushed Harry away but he only got two steps away before Harry grabbed his arm again.
“Are you telling me you weren’t?”
Draco shook his head and opened his mouth to argue, but instead of speaking, he stepped forwards into Harry’s space, and without a thought, Harry pressed his mouth against Draco’s again in a bruising kiss.
The kiss seemed to be a continuation of their argument more than anything else, but instead of pushing, Harry held Draco’s shoulder in a grip that was bound to leave marks, and Draco pulled on Harry’s hair and at his shirt.
As the struggled Draco’s back hit a tree, knocking the wind out of him, but he didn’t let go of Harry, just kept pushing against his touch, pulling him closer and scratching at any skin he could touch as Harry gripped his waist and his arms and pressed a leg between Draco’s, making them both aware of how hard they were.
The feel of Draco’s erection against his own seemed to snap Harry out of a trance, and he stopped this kiss. They were breathing hard, still pressed against each other, and Draco was looking at him as if he’d asked a question that Harry didn’t know the answer to.
And then, just as suddenly as he had appeared, Draco was pushing out of Harry’s grasp and rushing back inside through a side door. By the time Harry had calmed down enough to go inside, there was no sign of Draco.
It wasn’t until weeks later that Harry realised Malfoy Manor had stopped causing flashbacks after their encounter.
Harry screamed and sat up in bed.
It had been months since his last nightmare; years since the events it remembered (the Great Hall, Bellatrix pointing her wand at Ginny, Harry helpless to save her, and then she was lying on the Chamber floor, pale and small. Voldemort standing over her, laughing, and he’d lost, Harry had lost, and it was too late)
He hoped the rooms of this hotel were soundproof, but even as he thought that, the door to the room burst open, and Draco Malfoy stood in front of him, pale but determined and, as he realised Harry was safe, angry as hell.
“Not being murdered in your bed then, Potter?”
Harry sighed. He wasn’t sure why the Department had insisted on him accompanying Draco on this stupid fact finding mission. He supposed perhaps an Auror should be present, and Draco was never going to be an Auror with his past no matter how much of the work he already did, but why him?
The click of the door shutting woke Harry from his reverie, and he looked up to see that Draco was still in the room, looking at him strangely.
“If you have to destroy my peace during this trip with your presence, at least you could let me get a peaceful night’s sleep!”
“I didn’t choose this, you know, Malfoy.”
“Oh no.” Malfoy snarled, walking towards the bed. “You never do choose, do you? You just get yourself into these situations and expect others to get you out of them. Can’t be bothered to let anyone else know what’s going on. Just expect the world to revolve around you.”
Draco was standing right next to the bed now, and Harry swung himself round to face Draco and stood up.
“I don’t expect anything to revolve around me, you arrogant little… and what do you mean ‘let other people know what’s going on’? At least I don’t run out on people when…”
Harry suddenly ran out of words, realising how close they were standing, both half naked and mussed from sleep.
Draco made a frustrated sound and turned to leave, but in the same moment he seemed to change his mind.
“Not this time.” He stepped towards Harry and whispered in his ear. “You don’t get to do this again.”
And then, before Harry had interpreted the words, Draco was pushing him back onto the bed and straddling him.
They were both wearing thin pyjama bottoms and nothing else, and Draco’s hands scratched down Harry’s chest as he rolled his hips, making Harry buck up and swear.
Trying to gain the upper hand, Harry rolled them over and pressed Draco down into the mattress, grabbing his arms and pinning his wrists above his head, but Draco just rolled his hips again and lunged up to capture Harry’s mouth in a kiss.
Harry moaned against Draco’s lips; the friction was already driving him wild and Draco just kept kissing him. Hard and passionate, this kiss was less a battle than the other had been and more… something else. Harry nipped at Draco’s lip, but he also loosed Draco’s wrists and was surprised when Draco didn’t try to push him off.
Instead Draco made short work of removing their thin clothing and dug his fingers into Harry’s back, pulling him in closer as he spread his legs making room for Harry between them.
“Fuck.” Harry swore and bit at the pale skin of Draco’s throat as Draco wormed one had between them and wrapped it around Harry’s cock. “I want… fuck, Malfoy I want to…”
Words deserted him as Draco twisted his wrist, making Harry see stars for a moment.
“Stop talking and do it!”
Draco pushed him backwards hard, unbalancing Harry for just long enough for Draco to turn over and, reaching for his wand, mutter a spell.
“What was that?!”
Harry couldn’t stop looking at the curve of Draco’s arse and the expanse of pale skin, but he was wary for a moment.
“Lubrication,” Draco glared back over his shoulder. “Idiot Gryffindor, you have done this before?”
Harry shook his head and Draco laughed.
“Perfect Potter, a virgin? Well, that’s priceless, but even an imbecile like you can work out what to do, so fuck me now or…”
Draco stopped, and Harry felt a grin spread across his face.
“You’ll what, Malfoy?” He knelt behind Draco and gripped his hips tightly. “You’re not going anywhere.”
It was awkward at first, even with the lubrication Draco was tight and the angle was off, but despite Draco’s comments, Harry managed to push inside until his hips were flush with Draco’s. He paused, marvelling in the feeling, until Draco growled his impatience.
“What are you waiting for, an invitation?”
Harry’s fingers tightened on Draco’s hips, and he pulled back and thrust into him again, eliciting a gasp from Draco, which turned into a moan as Harry shifted the angle.
Harry’s fingers slipped on Draco’s skin as he fucked him harder and faster, making Draco moan and swear and curse Harry. Both of them were on edge, too desperate for any care, or for it to last long, and as Draco curled his fingers around his own cock, he came, tightening around Harry and pushing him over the edge into his own orgasm.
The collapsed on the bed, and Harry could feel Draco’s chest heaving underneath him as they both struggled for breath.
He must have drifted off to sleep, as when he next came to, it was morning, and Draco and all his things were gone.
Their voices were guarded, and Harry could see the way Draco was watching him warily and watching the rest of the customers in the Leaky Cauldron.
“You wanted to see me?” Harry’s fingers twitched, and he reached for his drink to have something to do with his hands. He hadn’t seen Draco since… well, for a long time.
Draco reached into his bag and brought out a small vial filled with a purple liquid.
“This is Sleepease; it’s a new potion Astoria’s been developing, and it should help remove negative emotions when you’re trying to sleep.” Draco’s voice was steady, and he didn’t seem quite able to meet Harry’s eyes. “It won’t erase the dreams like Dreamless Sleep Potion will, but it should help them to seem less immediate.”
“I’ve noticed you seem to have problems with nightmares.” Draco looked up, and Harry’s breath caught as they looked at each other, but before he could say anything, Draco had looked away again.
“That’s a free sample. Astoria says it’ll be on the market in a month or two.”
Harry shook himself and reached out to take the bottle, his fingers brushing against Draco’s
“Astoria Greengrass.” Draco stared at their hands, still touching on the table. “The potion’s designer and my fiancée.”
Harry gripped the bottle and pulled back his hand as if he’d been burned.
“Your fiancée?” He studied Draco’s face. “You’ve never mentioned…”
“Well, we’re not exactly friends, are we?” Draco looked at him, his face set, and Harry couldn’t read the expression in his eyes at all. “Anyway, I hear you and the Weaselette will be engaged shortly.”
Harry half nodded. “Well, everyone’s expected it, and we’re both settled in jobs now, and…”
"Yes. Well.” Draco gathered up his bag and stood. “I’m sure you’ll be very happy in your little Gryffindoresque fantasy and now you won’t have to worry about… nightmares anymore, either.”
“I…” Harry touched Draco’s arm, stilling him, but he couldn’t think of a thing to say. “Thank you.”
Draco nodded and left the pub, leaving Harry, fingers curled around the potion, wondering why he felt so oddly bereft.