|Unlike Any Other
Author: Kay the Cricketed PM
(SLASH implications between Harry/Draco) There are many beautiful things in this world, but there are few that involve *him*.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Angst - Draco M. & Harry P. - Words: 1,400 - Reviews: 8 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 1 - Published: 03-02-03 - id: 1256521
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Unlike Any Other
Disclaimer: Don't own Harry Potter. If Draco isn't wearing leather or aprons every second of the book, than I have nothing to do with it.
Author's Notes: SLASH implications between Harry and Draco-- there's your warning. *grins* Enjoy the fic, as weird and descriptive and symbolic as it is. ^^;; Oh well. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The leaves were turning golden brown, as autumn turned her head towards Hogwarts.
Draco loved the season of fall, if only because it dragged the unwillingly beautiful winter behind it. He loved the darkening of the skies in midbreath, the chilled air dancing on his pale nose, as though a warning of the upcoming, bitter cold to arrive. Here, the ground would become dead and stale, crunching under the thick soles of his boots. And, only here in the midst of green's death bed, could he look up at a sky with a smile.
Perhaps he thinks of the clouds, drifting in the pale blue lighting of the morning. Perhaps the lifting of the corner's of his mouth is a bittersweet thing of remembrance, of the childhood days he spent tumbling in the grounds of his father's mansion, away from the watchful hawk-eyes of his family. Perhaps he merely smiles because, as many people would believe, it becomes infinitely simple to crush leaves in autumn. And one like Draco Malfoy loves to crush things.
For whatever reason, it is only autumn that brings his mouth into a smile -- whether by fondness or cruelty, or perhaps a twisted mixture of both.
Draco loved the falling of the leaves. He loved the way his fingers would grasp the railing to the stairs of the school, pale slender fingers stark against the black iron, and it would be so cold that he would be the only one to have touched it that month. There was nothing but him, in this world of autumn and winter, and he was the one who smiled. Not like the summers, not in the time of laughter and grins on freckled faces and charming green eyes. Not like everyone else.
Draco Malfoy was never like anyone else.
This was the thought that Harry Potter pondered, gazing down upon the lone figure below him.
He'd been sent from the Gryffindor dormitories to find Neville -- suspiciously missing, and suspected of being locked in a stray broom closet hours before lunch. Feeling the lazy, gracious mood he had, the entire group had volunteered him. Of course, Harry only agreed, with a slight roll of the eyes behind dark, framed glasses.
Had he known he would stumble on a window, and glance outside to see this.
Had he known that the window on the second floor overlooked the small grove of trees outside Hogwarts, where the branches reached whimsically towards the sky. They were not bare yet, but the flutterings of their golden leaves falling to their death was evidence that they soon would be.
Had he known that Malfoy would be there, crumpled on the ground, his knees tucked under him as he stared up at the sky. It was such an uncharacteristic, undignified position -- more than Harry had ever seen from the cruel boy.
Had he known that Draco's silver hair looked so different, when it was mussed and rumpled, with bits of brown and red and yellow scattered in it. Dead leaves. Had he been rolling in them? An absurd idea.
Had he known that Draco could smile just so, just like that.
Had he known that his throat would tighten, automatic and involuntary.
Yes. Harry Potter wanted very much to have never looked outside that window. There were some parts of a person that others shouldn't see, couldn't live with seeing -- this was one of them. It's impossible to completely hate someone who can look as though, for a single moment, they could love the world as much as Harry did.
And there was the smile. What was he smiling at? So many questions and answers could run through his mind like liquid silver, glowing and earnest. It almost made him want to stick his head out in the upcoming chill, and yell out, Why are you smiling? Tell me now, or I'll let everyone know! Ridiculous ideas. Childish words. Harry felt his cheeks darken, and his hands fumbled at the window sill.
Tell me now, or I make myself believe I'm dreaming.
But no dream Harry had ever had -- whether about Malfoy, and his flashing, dark eyes, or someone else for that matter, and yes, there were dreams sometimes, dreams about Malfoy and rooms and whispers -- no dream ever gave him a smile. And never a smile like that.
There had been cruel words, yes, the kind that were sharp and embedded in the back corners of his mind. There had been hot, intense flashes of something quite like hatred and a little like need, and the sensation of those freezing, beautiful sculptured hands on Harry's face. Skin that tasted like porcelain and marmalade. Lilies that died under his emerald eyes. The scent of leather books. Sometimes, he thinks that these are the things he sees, when he looks at Draco. All these scents and memories and whimsical desires, piled into the fabric of his dreams.
But never had there been a smile.
Never where there dead leaves sticking out of that smooth, perfect hair.
Never had Harry seen something that made him want to cry and laugh and smile all at once.
These little pieces of you. If I'm the only one to see this, the world's got a loss, he thinks, and when Harry does, he has to laugh softly to himself. The world sees enough of Draco Malfoy as it is, and it never seemed to particularly enjoy him. The decent half, at least.
But none of it has seen him in the secrets of autumn, either, Harry knows. And he acknowledges this rare event with a nod to the silent, gentle figure below him. Except Malfoy doesn't see it, because he doesn't even know anyone's there. If he did, Harry knows, he wouldn't keep that soft smile that graces his features so simply.
And when Harry turns away, Draco Malfoy lowers his head from the sky, and pinpoints his confused gaze on the window. The empty, faceless window that watched him from behind.
The leaves fall, and he grasps one on the ground in a hand. Looks down at it. Smiles again.
For a second, he ponders crushing it, and his nails rake gently over the crisp surface. So easy to destroy, so ready to perish -- the shell is all but crumbled away, leaving only tatters of the leaf behind. Is this what happens when a tree leaf wishes to die? It fades away until only the empty, hollow bones are left behind, waiting to be destroyed but unsuspecting shoes or eager hands?
Draco thinks he may be jealous that they have a choice. After all, he never has. No one even bothers to notice that he's worn himself down into a shell, waiting to be destroyed. No one bothers to finish him off. Why should the leaves be given that choice?
In a moment of mercy and bitter vengeance, he lets it fall back to the ground. Unharmed. Let it find another way to die, he will not be its savior and executioner at once.
Maybe this moment is the true reason he smiles in the fall -- because he has the control over life, because no one else understands it. Because he knows that soon, December and its snows will come to Hogwarts, and soon he can forget everything in the icy landscape. Soon, Draco can feel so numb and perfect all over that it won't hurt when he has to go home for Christmas, back to his father's cruel smirk and twisted ideas.
Autumn means the coming of distraction.
Yes, Draco Malfoy loves autumn.
Harry Potter loves his smile.
And the leaves mourn, because they indulge in both matters, but receive nothing but mercy because of it.
The End. ^_^;; I know it was... weird. But oh well. I was in the mood, after listening to all that pretty elf music from LOTR: Two Towers. :D
Please read and review! *hugs*