For: enchanted_jae, who asked for Fluff, humor, happy endings! I surely tried my hardest. I know the summary sounds angsty, but it isn’t really, I promise.
Warnings: Sex of a homosexual nature and excessive use of the word faerie.
Summary: The war is fading into a distant memory, and Harry and Draco are adrift in a sea of loneliness as the holidays approach. Can they both find some happiness at Christmas this year?
Thursday, December 17th
Harry arrived at the Ministry at 6:30 am, well before the throngs of employees, and took the lifts down to the archive and evidence vaults. He slipped into the door of the vault, whispering the password that Hermione had managed to procure for him. He’d spent all afternoon on Tuesday just orienting himself to the vault’s labyrinth of boxes. On Wednesday he’d found an entire wing filled with boxes marked Malfoy Manor. Slightly overwhelmed, he began to look through the boxes, and by the time it was 7:00 pm, he’d gone through about half. With a resigned sigh, Harry had left and gone to his Quidditch practice before falling into bed after 10:00 pm, not noticing the bough of holly and ivy hung over his front door.
Harry surveyed the remaining boxes, wishing he had some way to narrow this down and get out of the dank and musty vaults. He smacked himself on the forehead. Sometimes he was still such a fucking Muggle.
“Accio Malfoy Manor Christmas decorations!” Four large boxes flew in his direction, knocking him backwards as other boxes fell in their wake. With a grin, Harry brushed himself off and opened the first box. It was filled with ornaments of exquisitely carved crystal. Harry lifted one out, marveling at the tiny unicorn that tossed its head magnificently.
Harry forced himself to wait until he was sure it was late enough for the Ministry to be deserted before spiriting the boxes back home. He decided to hide them in his closet so Draco wouldn’t see them when he delivered Harry’s secret gifts. Harry crawled under his covers, and only noticed the mistletoe hanging over his bedroom doorway as he settled down into his pillows. With a sleepy smile, Harry let his exhaustion overwhelm him.
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Friday, December 18th
Pleased that he’d found the Malfoy family Christmas decorations with a day to spare, Harry allowed himself the luxury of sleeping in. He woke with the low winter sun casting shadows around his room and grinned at the clock when he saw that it was well past eleven. After a healthy piss, Harry scratched his bare belly and headed towards the kitchen for some food. He’d need to eat well today to keep up his strength at the Quidditch game – the forecast was calling for snow again, and the game didn’t start until after sundown. He was surprised to find that he was actually looking forward to the game. He hadn’t flown in years, and his two team practices had been nothing short of exhilarating.
As Harry passed under his doorway he paused, looking up at the mistletoe. He allowed his imagination free reign and pictured Draco standing in front of him with a smile playing on his lips that was just shy of wicked, before the two of them would lean into each other, slowly, slowly, eyes locking just before their lips touched. Harry closed his eyes and allowed the image to replay a few times before shaking his head at the floor to clear it. He noticed a scroll rolled up and tied with ribbon laying a few inches away on his living room rug. With an eager grin, he tore off the ribbon and unrolled it.
Mistletoe – a symbol of prosperity, healing, fertility, and protection. Have you ever been caught under the mistletoe? I’ve avoided it like dragonpox ever since my aunt kissed me under it when I was eight. To say I was scarred for life would be an understatement. I’ve been trying to find out why we even have the tradition of kissing under mistletoe, and there are quite a few legends. This tidbit in particular really struck me…did you know that in the past whenever enemies met under the mistletoe in the forest, they had to lay down their arms and observe a truce until the next day? That’s some powerful magic.
Hoping you find what you desire under your mistletoe…
--your Christmas Faerie
Oh Draco, Harry thought, you have no idea what I desire to find under my mistletoe this year. With a sigh, he carefully folded the note and put it with the others.
As Harry and the rest of the red team walked out onto the Quidditch Pitch, the capacity crowd gave a loud roar. Harry looked around appreciatively-the ticket sales had been a smashing success and Hermione had said they looked to make twice as much money for the orphans as she’d hoped. He tried not to think about the fact that he was the main draw for most people in attendance. It wasn’t everyday that Harry Potter made such a public appearance, and the Prophet had spent the better part of the week playing up his former Quidditch rivalry with Malfoy.
The green team approached from the other end of the pitch, and the teams met in the middle to shake hands. Harry caught a look at Draco in his Quidditch gear and felt his blood pound in his ears. Draco caught his gaze and twitched his lips, fixing Harry with a smouldering gaze before stepping forward with his hand extended.
“Good luck, Potter, you’ll need it,” Draco drawled. Harry snorted and rolled his eyes, squeezing Draco’s hand a little harder.
“You’ve never beat me, Malfoy. What makes you think today will be your lucky day?”
Draco raised an eyebrow coyly at Harry before tugging him close and leaning in with his lips next to Harry’s ear.
“I used to fuck a professional Seeker. I know more moves than you could dream of, Potter.” Draco stepped back and gave Harry a wink before turning to his teammates. Harry was having trouble breathing, and decided that looking anywhere but at Draco was his best course of action. The referee was signaling the teams to prepare for the game, and at the sound of the whistle, Harry launched himself into the air and flew around the goals, trying to shake the feeling of Draco’s hot breath in his ear.
An hour into the game, the two teams were tied, and the snitch was proving to be quite elusive. Draco didn’t shadow Harry as much as he had at Hogwarts, and it was obvious that he had learned a thing or two from his former boyfriend. Harry was impressed but tried not to show it, and the crowd delighted in the taunts and rude gestures the two Seekers flung at each other.
Harry had just lost sight of the snitch again when he saw Draco leaning hard over his broom, aiming straight across the pitch. Harry saw a flash of gold hovering about 15 meters over the center of the pitch, and he swore colorfully before shooting towards the ground at a 30 degree angle, urging his broom forward like a galloping steed. Draco was coming in just as fast from the opposite direction, and both men reached out with their right hands as they closed in on the snitch. When it looked as if Harry might in fact reach the snitch first, Draco lunged forward, leaving himself a tenuous grasp on his broom. Both of their hands swept towards the fluttering gold ball and clasped together with the snitch in between. The force of their flying, combined with Harry's momentum downward, jerked Draco completely off his broom, leaving him hanging perilously in midair, Harry's grip the only thing stopping him from plummeting to the ground.
"Okay Malfoy, just keep looking at me, don't look down. I'll lower us to the ground," Harry yelled. Draco's eyes locked on Harry’s and the blond nodded. Harry struggled to lower them quickly without losing his hold, a difficult feat with the snitch struggling between their hands.
"Holy hell Malfoy, you're heavy for a scrawny little bastard."
"All muscle," Draco gasped, and Harry nearly dropped the blond, who had the audacity to finish up his declaration with a waggle of his eyebrows and a saucy wink.
"Second thought, better if we don't look at each other," Harry grunted, trying to keep his body focused on not sliding off his broom and not on the lecherous look in the eye of the man he was saving. They landed on the ground with an unceremonious oomph, but kept their hands together. The ref came running over and pried their hands open slightly to retrieve the snitch.
"You boys mind if we call that a tie?" the referee asked, looking back and forth between the two. Harry looked at Draco, who blinked and shook his head.
The score and tie were announced, and there was some good natured grumbling from the crowd. Draco remained on the ground, rubbing his right shoulder and watching Harry.
"Why better?" he drawled.
"What?" Harry asked, pulling himself off the ground.
"Why better if we didn't look at each other?"
A million and one insults ran through Harry's head, all waving their hands and screaming, "Pick me! Pick me!" Harry was surprised to find that the answer that managed to wrestle the others to the ground and come out victorious turned out to be the least insulting of the bunch, and uncomfortably close to the truth.
Harry turned and walked away towards the locker rooms, telling himself that his cheeks were only hot from exertion. He missed seeing Draco sprawl onto his back on the pitch, grinning like an idiot. Harry took a long, hot shower, wincing as his frozen extremities tingled under the water’s heat.
What was this thing with Malfoy anyway? When the git wasn’t secretly showering him with presents, he teased and flirted until Harry was red-faced and tongue-tied. Probably just Draco’s way of getting me off my game, Harry mused glumly. His mind easily shifted to other ways Draco could get him off, and Harry was soon using his soap slicked hand on his very interested cock, his mind flipping through his favorite Draco scenarios until he reached a powerful and very satisfying conclusion. Exhausted, Harry turned off the water and stepped out of the shower. The locker room was all but deserted now, and he wondered just how long he’d spent showering. Harry wrapped his towel around his waist and walked quickly through the brisk air to the changing area.
Harry pulled his bag open to get his clean clothes and discovered a box tucked inside, tied with red ribbon. He quickly pulled his clothes on and sat on the bench to open the gift. Harry let out a soft gasp as he lifted out a snitch, wings outstretched and frozen in time, the words Ministry Christmas Charity Match - December 2004 engraved in neat script around it. There was a red ribbon strung in a loop from the top. Harry carefully set it on his lap as he pulled out the note tucked inside.
Great game today – best yet, I’d venture. Sometimes it is nice to have a keepsake. When it’s time to decorate your tree next year you’ll have this memento from today, and hopefully some happy memories.
Harry closed his eyes as a thousand emotions ran through him. Everything Draco had done for him, given him, had been perfect. Harry’s heart ached at the thought that there was someone out there that understood him, and that someone was Draco, and he had no fucking idea if Draco would even consider being with him. Harry’s Gryffindor tendencies took hold, and he quickly threw everything back into his bag, hoping to find Draco and talk to him before he left. Harry was hurrying out of the changing area and towards the exit when the door opened and Draco walked in. Harry’s heart leapt in his chest.
“Draco!” he said, unable to suppress a grin.
“Oh good, Harry. I’m glad I found you.”
“Draco, I’m happy to see you too. Look—”
“No, Harry, wait.” Harry frowned. “Hermione’s waiting outside, she wanted me to come in here and look for you. She needs you. It’s Ron…” Draco finished miserably. Harry’s knees went weak and he placed a steadying hand on the wall, feeling faint.
“Ron’s taken a turn for the worse. She wants you to go to St. Mungo’s with her.” Harry nodded and headed unseeing towards the door. Draco reached out and placed a hand on Harry’s chest, stopping his progress. Harry turned to look at the blond. Draco opened his mouth to speak, then closed it and shook his head. He simply patted Harry on the chest and gave him a weak smile before giving him a soft push towards the door.
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Saturday, December 19th
Draco lie in bed with his arms crossed over his chest, stubbornly waiting for the sun to shine through his window before getting up that morning. He’d slept fitfully, replaying the game in his head, wondering if Harry had seen the present he had tucked into the bag, hoping that Harry and Hermione and, by extension, Ron were doing okay at St. Mungo’s. He would be less worried if Harry hadn’t gone white as a sheet when he had mentioned Ron last night. Draco had expected Harry to be strong for Hermione, and now he was worried that the two friends would barely be able to hold each other up.
As the first rays of morning light stole across his flat, Draco made himself a light breakfast and a strong cup of tea before dressing warmly and steeling himself for where he was about to go. After a few steadying breaths, he closed his eyes and Apparated, only opening them when he felt the chill of the December morning air ripping through his lungs.
Draco tried not to look over at the crumbling façade of Malfoy Manor-he’d shed enough tears when he’d come here last week for the mistletoe and holly-but he couldn’t stop his gaze from dragging over the shattered remains of his former life. The sun was low in the sky, casting an ethereal golden glow along the Manor’s walls. Draco turned away, blinking rapidly. He trudged off through the woods, following an old path that zigzagged around trees and boulders, and soon found himself at the top of a hill ringed with oak trees. It was a sacred grove, lovingly brought to life and tended to by the Druids of old. The trees were ancient now, grand and imposing in stature, fairly swirling with magic. Draco had come here earlier to gather the mistletoe that hung from the trees, and harvest the holly that grew at their roots. Now he hoped to find a fallen branch from the oak itself.
Draco sent up a silent appeal of thanks and devotion, explaining his needs for the sacred wood, before moving slowly around the grove. He’d nearly walked completely around the circle of trees and hadn’t found a single branch when the wind picked up, swirling brown leaves in an eddy in the center of the clearing. When the leaves settled Draco saw a small log lying amongst them. He looked up at the crown of the trees over head and grinned before walking over and reverently picking the log up.
“Thank you,” he whispered. With the log pressed to his chest, Draco walked out of the grove and Apparated home. He took a quick shower to warm himself up, jotted down a shopping list on a small piece of parchment, and headed for Diagon Alley.
The Wizarding district was packed to capacity with shoppers, and Draco had to pick his way slowly through the crowds to get around. There were Christmas trees on every corner and wandering groups of carolers. Draco saw a young couple walking arm in arm, trying to stay warm and stay together in the jostle of the crowd. They were sharing a large gingerbread cookie, with eyes only for each other. Draco sighed and queued up at the coffee stand, imagining standing here with Harry, their eyes bright and cheeks pink from the cold, not minding the press of the people because simply being together made life more bearable.
Draco ducked out of the queue, no longer able to stand feeling so alone amongst the happy throng of witches and wizards. He quickly took care of his shopping and pushed wearily towards the exit. As he made his way past Weasleys’ Wizarding Wheezes, he wondered how Harry and Hermione were holding up. Convincing himself that it would not be weird to show up unannounced at St. Mungo’s to check in on his co-workers, Draco Apparated there straight away.
St. Mungo’s was blessedly quiet, and Draco had no problem charming the witch at the main desk to give him all the information he needed. It turned out that he had just missed his “good friend Harry Potter”, who went home mid-morning after staying up all night with “that poor Ronald Weasley’s fiancée”. Ron had improved significantly overnight, and although he wouldn’t be going home today as planned, the healers held out the hope that he would be home by Christmas. She asked if Draco wanted to visit Ron, but he played the part of tired and concerned friend exceedingly well, and said he’d come back when Ron was stronger.
Draco finally returned home, dumping his packages on the large table he’d set up in his spare bedroom and making himself some lunch and a strong pot of coffee. When his stomach was full, he went into his workroom, as he’d been calling it, and set out everything he would need. Draco’s work table was strewn with bits of ribbon, parchments, books, old notes, and broken bits of holly. Without these spots of color, one would never guess that it was nearly Christmas by looking at Draco’s flat. Despite the overwhelming amount of holiday cheer he’d put into Harry’s house, Draco’s was void of any holiday spirit.
With a sigh, Draco set to work. He decanted some Frankincense oil into a small vial before corking and sealing it with wax. He picked up the red candle he’d bought and meditated over it before carving a rune of protection into it with a small silver knife. Draco looked at his little creation and hoped that Harry would appreciate it, even though it didn’t look like much. He pulled out a fresh piece of parchment and began to write the note to go along with it.
I realize this looks like a lump of wood, a candle, and a small bottle. But a Yule Log is one of the most ancient of magics at this time of year. I found this oak log in a sacred grove – I was allowed to take it because my intentions for it were pure. Some people burn their Yule Log on Christmas Eve. I prefer to burn it on the Solstice, which is coming up on Tuesday. The log can be kept burning for twelve hours, warming not only the house, but those that call it home. Oak is a symbol of protection, which I have doubled by adding the rune to the candle.
Place the log in your hearth, and sprinkle it with salt and the frankincense oil (a little goes a long way here, Potter). Light it with the candle, and let the magic radiate around you, let the warmth seep into your bones.
- - CF
Draco read through his note and smiled. He rolled it up carefully and tied it with ribbon. His lack of sleep and busy morning had finally caught up to him, and he slipped off his shoes and crawled into bed for an afternoon nap.
Draco stood outside Harry’s flat that evening and focused on the wards, breaking them down bit by bit. The task of getting into Harry’s apartment had become easier and easier, until it really seemed that Harry wasn’t even trying to keep him out. The wards fell and Draco picked up the heavy piece of wood at his feet before Apparating into Harry’s living room. It was dark and quiet, and he held his breath, sure that the sound of his Apparation would have woken the dead.
He wasn’t sure if Harry wasn’t home or if he was asleep, but Draco wasn’t taking any chances so he tiptoed over to Harry’s kitchen table and set down his gift, carefully placing the scroll of parchment tied with ribbon next to it. He paused and looked around Harry’s flat. Everything Draco had given him was still up, and the place was rather festive. Draco walked over to the Christmas tree and smiled softly to himself. The snitch he had just given Harry was already hanging on the tree, front and center. He reached out and touched it gently, running his thumb over the words.
“It’s really beautiful,” Harry said softly, and Draco turned around quickly, eyes wide. Harry was a rumpled mess of twisted pajama bottoms and rumpled bed head. So…asleep then, Draco thought wistfully. Draco glanced around and thought about Apparating away, but Harry had started to walk toward him and he found that his feet were rooted firmly to the floor.
“I think it is my favorite, actually,” Harry continued as he closed in on Draco. “I mean, I love all the others that you gave me, but this one is like you said, a memory trapped in time. It means a lot to me.” Harry pressed his lips together in a shy smile and stopped right in front of Draco.
“Why are you up?” Draco said in a strangled whisper.
“I’m sorry, I know you didn’t want me to figure out who you were, and I didn’t mean to, I swear.” Harry gave Draco an apologetic shrug. “You left a note for Hermione on her desk, the day of the first snow? I went to see her and saw it…the handwriting…”
Draco scowled and crossed his arms in front of his chest. Bloody perfect. He hadn’t thought that Harry would possibly see the note and put two and two together.
“Well look, I’ll get out of your flat then. I can stop, if you want, I mean…” Bloody fuck but this was awkward. Draco jumped reflexively when Harry placed a hand on his arm.
“No, Draco, please don’t go. Look, I wasn’t going to say anything, I mean I haven’t for over a week now…but yesterday, after the game-the snitch-I just had to talk to you. I wanted to talk to you when you came in the locker room, but, you know, Ron…and Hermione…anyway, I set the wards to wake me when they were breached. I’m sorry. I don’t want to ruin this…this thing…” Harry gestured helplessly between them with his free hand.
“I brought you a Yule Log,” Draco said. Harry turned and looked on the table. With a wave of his hand the lights in his flat burned softly to life. He gave Draco a smile and let go of his arm to walk over to the gift. He stood with his back toward Draco for a moment, holding the scroll of parchment.
“I don’t think I’ll ever see ribbon like this and not think of you,” Harry murmured. He untied the ribbon and read the note before turning and placing it in the humidor with the others. Draco looked at Harry in amazement.
“You’ve kept them all?” Draco asked in wonder. Harry stared at the box of parchments in silence, chewing his bottom lip. When he finally looked up, he pinned Draco with an unreadable look.
“I sit and re-read them sometimes…practically have them memorized.” Harry walked back over to Draco and lit the lights on the tree with a whisper. “I believe you said that as a child the faerie lights on your tree changed colors?” Draco’s mouth was dry and he could only nod dazedly at Harry.
Harry reached out and grabbed Draco’s hand, pulling him to the middle of the room. Harry directed Draco’s gaze to the front door and pointed to the bough hanging above it. “The holly and ivy symbolize protection, and are a source of old magic,” Harry recited. Draco nodded again and looked back at Harry. Harry turned to face him, staring at him with a slightly wild look in his eyes before scrubbing his hand through his hair in a gesture that looked like the Gryffindor had come to some sort of decision.
“And here,” Harry said softly, pulling Draco into the doorway to the bedroom, “Here is where you hoped I’d find what I desire.” Draco knew they were under the mistletoe, but he didn’t dare take his eyes off of Harry, and he wondered frantically when he’d lost complete control of the situation.
“Have you?” Draco managed to whisper.
“I have now,” Harry replied. “So I’m going to kiss you, and see if reality is better than fantasy.” Draco snorted out a slightly hysterical laugh, and Harry smiled back at him and slowly leaned in. Draco decided that he could not let this Gryffindor lead the charge, so he placed a hand around Harry’s jaw and leaned in the rest of the way, pressing a brutal kiss against Harry’s lips. Harry whimpered but did not pull back, and the kiss quickly spiraled into the realm of heightened passion, all teeth and tongue and quick breaths.
Draco pulled back slightly, and Harry turned his head to nuzzle his cheek against Draco’s. Both had their eyes closed, their breath coming in ragged gasps.
“You taste like coffee,” Harry whispered, and he felt more than heard Draco chuckle, deep in his chest.
“You taste like heaven,” Draco whispered back, and turned his face to press his lips against Harry’s mouth. Draco slid his hands around Harry’s waist, and they kissed like that for what felt like an eternity—soft and slow. Draco felt Harry hook his thumbs through the belt loops on his pants and pull him forward so their bodies were flush. Draco took a step closer, pressing Harry up against the doorframe and causing them both to gasp at the contact. The kissing heated up again, making Draco dizzy with its intensity, and their hands wandered freely, exploring backs and arms and chests.
Harry placed his hands on either side of Draco’s face and kissed him one last time before pulling back. With a smile, he slid out from under Draco and went into his bedroom, slowly undressing. Draco smiled to himself and followed suit, and was soon pressing himself against Harry’s back, running his hands up and down the Gryffindor’s chest. Harry moaned appreciatively and leaned his head back against Draco’s shoulder.
“Tease,” Harry choked out as Draco ran his hands lower with each pass, shying around Harry’s straining erection.
Draco laughed. “You don’t know the half of it,” he whispered in Harry’s ear before pushing him down onto the bed.
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Sunday, December 20th
Harry woke up slowly, buried under the weight of the covers and the arms and the legs that were wrapped around him. He slid his hand out from under his cheek and placed it on Draco’s hand that was resting on his chest. Draco stirred slightly but didn’t wake up. Harry turned his face into the pillow and grinned. Last night had been, in a word, amazing. He’d hoped that Draco wouldn’t be angry at being confronted, but only in Harry’s wildest dreams had he thought things would have gone this well.
Harry closed his eyes and relived the evening—from the kiss under the mistletoe to the first unbelievable shag that was as fast and furious as the second one was slow and exquisite. The long hot shower together, the bowls of ice cream while sitting under the covers…but it was the conversation during their third and final romp of the night that echoed in Harry’s mind.
”God, Draco, you are so bloody gorgeous,” Harry murmured as he planted kisses down Draco’s ribcage.
“Can’t…ahhh…can’t believe this is finally happening,” Draco managed as he reached out to run his fingers through Harry’s hair.
“Me either…didn’t know I wanted you so bad. Hit me like a ton of bricks. Haven’t stopped thinking about you.”
“Mmmm, wanted you for ages. Watched you in the showers after Quidditch…” Harry stopped his licking of every inch of Draco’s body and looked up at the blond.
“After the game the other night?” Harry asked, remembering exactly what it was he was doing in the shower after the game. “Because I was thinking of you when I…” Harry wrapped his hand around Draco’s cock to demonstrate.
Harry stopped abruptly. “You watched me in the showers at school?” he asked incredulously.
“God yes, Harry, don’t stop…”
“Unbelievable. Sneaky Slytherin…” Harry muttered as he moved his hand once again, slow and teasing.
“You’re too beautiful for words. Can’t concentrate…ohfuckyes…at work, when you’re around.” Draco writhed under Harry’s touch. “Been…been stalking you on your floor for, ah, weeks.”
Harry smiled and crawled back up to be face to face with Draco. Draco’s cheeks were flushed, and he struggled to focus on Harry. Harry leaned in and placed a soft kiss on Draco’s lips.
“I’d always thought we were so different, but now I think you are the only one that really gets me,” Harry confessed softly, shyly, his eyes focusing on Draco’s left ear. Draco slid his hand up to cup Harry’s cheek, pulling gently until Harry’s eyes met his own. He leaned up and placed a searing kiss on Harry’s lips and they both shuddered at its intensity.
Draco raked his hands down Harry’s back and gripped the brunet’s hips, shifting Harry until he felt Draco’s hard length slide slowly into him. Harry’s eyes fluttered shut and he gasped, wondering how he had ever survived without this. Having Draco inside of him was nothing short of exquisite, it was all just so—
“Perfect,” Draco gasped. Harry’s eyes flew open and he found himself lost in Draco’s warm, lust-filled gaze. Their rhythm sped up and Harry could feel his blood pounding through his veins. He leaned in and kissed the man beneath him, drawing a moan from Draco’s lips.
“Never want you to stop,” Harry murmured against Draco’s mouth.
“Ahh…Harry…need you more than I can say,” Draco breathed.
“Draco…” Harry breathed, all his love and lust wrapped up in that one word. At the sound of his name, the blond grabbed Harry’s hips once again and thrust up hard, letting out a strangled cry as he came. Harry watched him, reveling in the pure bliss on Draco’s face, and when Draco slid his hand around to grasp Harry’s cock, the brunet moaned out Draco’s name again as his orgasm ripped through of him. Boneless and spent, Harry all but melted on top of Draco’s long frame.
“Be gentle,” Draco murmured. Harry moved to shift his weight off of Draco, but the blond held him fast. Harry turned his face to look quizzically at Draco.
“Gentle how?” Harry asked. He saw Draco blush slightly as his eyes slid shut.
“Gentle with my heart,” Draco whispered.
Harry sighed and snuggled back against Draco. The blond stirred and lifted his head slightly to squint at Harry.
“Time is it?” Draco slurred, blinking slowly.
“Half eight or so. Somewhere you need to be?” Harry asked, half joking.
“M’exactly where I need to be,” Draco murmured sleepily, and he lay his head back down on the pillow.
Harry thought he might never stop grinning.
Harry and Draco made themselves a huge lunch cobbled together with the random assortment of foods found in Harry’s cupboards and fridge. Draco teased him mercilessly on his plebian taste in food, until Harry levitated a mustard bottle over his head threateningly.
They ate and talked and drank and talked and kissed and talked…Harry was feeling giddy and something remarkably close to puppy love. He couldn’t believe that he was sitting here simply talking to Draco, sharing things with him he couldn’t even bring himself to tell Ron or Hermione. Harry couldn’t help the smile that spread across his face as he looked up at Draco.
“What?” Draco asked, suppressing his own grin.
Harry dropped his eyes to the table and fiddled with his fork. “I haven’t been this happy for a long time,” he finally said. Draco didn’t immediately reply, and Harry couldn’t bring himself to look up, afraid he’d gone too far in his declarations.
“Harry,” Draco said softly. Harry dropped his head a little lower but raised his eyes, looking at Draco over the top of his glasses. “Same here.” Harry lifted his head slightly. “Since the war, the holidays have been really hard on me. I did my level best to spend most of them utterly pissed, but it’s impossible to keep everything bottled up.”
Draco paused and looked around Harry’s flat. “Doing all this for you…it’s been cathartic. It forced me to face head on the loss of my family, my traditions, my childhood. It was damn difficult sometimes, and I wanted to stop more than once, but every time I saw you, or overheard you telling Hermione how the gifts made you feel, well that was a great incentive to keep going.”
Harry nodded and watched Draco thoughtfully. “So what decorations did you put up at your place?” Harry asked.
“Wait, seriously? You covered my flat with every possible Christmas decoration imaginable, and you don’t have anything at your house?” Draco shook his head, and Harry gaped at him. Draco leaned back and looked out the window.
“It just didn’t seem worth it. I couldn’t muster the energy to start fresh at my own place. I mean…” Draco shrugged. “I live alone,” he finished lamely. Harry rolled his eyes and leaned forward to place a hand on Draco’s leg.
“I live alone. You decorated for me. That kind of logic makes no sense, Draco.”
“Logic and loneliness don’t often go hand in hand,” Draco whispered. Harry gave Draco’s leg a squeeze and stood abruptly.
“Come with me,” Harry commanded, grabbing Draco’s hand and pulling him to his feet. They crossed the threshold into Harry’s room, and Harry stopped suddenly, stepping backwards to place himself under the mistletoe and pulling Draco into his arms for a deep and passionate kiss. He felt Draco lean into him, and Harry gave Draco one last peck on the lips before he let himself get completely distracted.
“Sit,” Harry said, pointing at the bed. Draco cocked an eyebrow at him but did as he was told.
Harry made a face at him. “Close your eyes.” Draco sighed and fell back on the bed with his arm over his eyes. Harry was tempted to crawl over and undo the buttons on Draco’s pants, but he forced himself to focus and opened his closet door. He pulled out four large boxes and lined them up on the floor.
“Okay, you can look now.” Draco pushed himself up off the bed and looked at the boxes. Then at Harry. Then at the boxes again.
“Well. I have to say I was expecting something a little more…exciting,” Draco drawled. Harry caught Draco’s gaze and held it, before slowly turning one box around, revealing a large Ministry seal. Draco’s eyes dropped to the box, and Harry watched as grey eyes widened in disbelief. Draco slid off the bed and crawled over to the boxes, running his hand over the seal. Below it, scrawled in black ink, were the words “Malfoy Manor-Holiday”.
“I was going to give these to you on Christmas,” Harry murmured, and Draco nodded slightly before turning to look at Harry quizzically. “I was going to try to get into your flat this time, and leave them for you.”
“But…how did you get them? I thought everything was destroyed.” Draco lifted a lid off the first box with shaking hands.
“They were in the evidence vault at the Ministry. I know a guy…” Harry said and shrugged.
Draco sat on Harry’s bedroom floor for a solid hour, carefully pulling out each Christmas decoration and setting it aside. He explained the meanings behind them to Harry in hushed tones, as if speaking too loudly might make it all disappear. When he’d nearly reached the bottom of the last box, Draco stopped and stared into it, pressing his lips tightly together.
“Draco?” Harry asked softly, reaching out to place a hand on the blond’s shoulder. Draco let out a shuddering breath and squeezed his eyes shut tight, unable to stop the tears that slid down his cheeks. He brushed them away impatiently and reached in to pull out a brilliant golden tree topper.
“Oh, Draco,” Harry said, and he kissed away the tears that fell anew, eventually pulling Draco into his arms and holding him tight. When he felt the blond take in a deep cleansing breath and let it out, Harry loosened his grip and leaned back slightly.
“I think,” Harry said slowly, “that we need to spend the next four days getting you a tree, and getting your place decorated with all this stuff. What do you say, Draco?”
“Yeah,” Draco whispered, setting the tree topper carefully back in the box.
“I’ll even lift you up to put it on top,” Harry said. “You know, for old times’ sake.” Draco snorted and gave Harry a good natured shove, which escalated quickly into a raucous wrestling match. After a long insult-filled struggle, Draco had Harry pinned on his stomach with his arms clamped down on the ground.
“Well, well, Potter, we find ourselves in this position yet again,” Draco drawled.
“Why do you think I’m not struggling?” Harry replied saucily. Draco leaned in and stuck his tongue in Harry’s ear before kissing Harry softly on the temple. Draco rested his forehead against Harry’s cheek and sighed.
“Thank you for everything,” Draco whispered.
“We wouldn’t even be here if it weren’t for you,” Harry replied. They lay like that in silence, until Harry shifted slightly under Draco’s weight and Draco sat up, allowing Harry to roll over and sit up. Draco turned to face Harry, settling onto the floor in the vee of Harry’s legs, his own long legs straddling Harry’s thighs. They looked at each other for a long while, the air thick with emotion. Harry finally licked his lips slightly and ducked his head, a cue Draco was coming to interpret as Harry wanting to say something heartfelt and important but being slightly embarrassed to do so.
“I think this will be the first Christmas I’ve looked forward to,” Harry murmured. Draco reached out and slid his fingers into Harry’s, locking their hands together.
“Why is that?” Draco asked softly.
“Because I’m spending it with you,” Harry said simply, rubbing his thumb gently against Draco’s. Draco smiled, and leaned in for a kiss.
~~ end ~~