Summary: After Harry runs away from the Dursleys and the blood wards have failed, Dumbledore has an idea. If it works, Harry will have protection from Voldemort even stronger than Blood Wards. Non-explicit HP/SSslash, mentions of forced marriage. Oneshot.
AN: Alright, so I've always been really, really bad at writing oneshots - they always, always morph into long, in depth stories. This was going to be one of those, except I decided to adapt it into a oneshot instead. Hope you like it.
The atmosphere in the kitchen at the Burrow was tense—Harry shifted nervously. It was the first ever Order meeting he had been allowed to attend and at the rate things were going it was sure to be his last. The topic of discussion? Himself, of course. More importantly, they were discussing plans for his safe-keeping.
Harry slumped in his chair, pulling absentmindedly on his newly lengthened hair. It wasn't such a disaster when he grew it out—though it still refused to cooperate and fell in his face in a most annoying manner. A huffed breath sent it blowing to the side and Harry allowed himself a small twinge of satisfaction at his new appearance—he had been able to walk through Diagon Alley with no one recognizing him. But more than that, he actually felt confident for the first time in the fact that he looked good. His glasses were gone—he'd replaced them with contacts from a shop that was making magical versions of muggle products—they had various charms that allowed them to stay clean and non-irritating. He didn't have to take them out. He had completely updated his wardrobe for clothes that actually fit—some of them were still second hand—but they weren't worn to the bone like Dudley's hand-me-downs had been. He was currently wearing a black t-shirt with phrase 'You're laughing now, but will you be laughing when I crawl out from under your bed?' and a pair of dark jeans. His trainers were also black—though they were charmed to be able to change color at a thought.
Since he was thinking about it, Harry changed his trainers from black to sapphire blue, smiling half-heartedly at Hermione when she raised an eyebrow—his bushy haired friend was still peeved with him from his latest stunt. Ron was sitting across from him, and wouldn't look at him. Glancing around, Harry caught the eye of Remus Lupin. The werewolf also raised an eyebrow at him, turning his attention back to the argument between Mrs. Weasley and Dumbledore. Remus was also angry at Harry—in fact, there wasn't a person in the room that wasn't angry at him for running away from the Dursleys.
Harry sighed, straightening up. He didn't regret it—he would never regret it. His biggest regret was that he had been careless enough to get caught after only three weeks of freedom.
"This would have never happened if you had just let him come live with us for the summer!" Mrs. Weasley bellowed. Her face was flushed, and she was breathing heavily as she towered over the calm headmaster. "How many times have we told you that those relatives of his are no good—they treated him horribly! We would have gladly taken him in and then he wouldn't have been forced to do something so desperate!"
"I understand your concern, Molly. I really do. And had Harry actually come to me with his problems rather than act of his own accord we would not be in this situation." Dumbledore said smoothly, turning his gaze to Harry. Harry raised an eyebrow, but didn't look away. He chose not to bring up the last time he had gone to the headmaster with his troubles regarding the Dursleys—it would do him no good now.
"I still want to know how the boy slipped through the guard." Moody growled. "Someone was obviously slacking in their duties."
Harry grinned, rolling his eyes at this. The grizzled ex-auror made it sound like Harry had been guarded closer than the bloody royal family. Really? It wasn't that hard to escape under cover of his invisibility cloak past a single guard—especially when said guard had a cold and his location was given away by stifled sniffles and sneezes.
"That is beside the point, Alastor." Dumbledore frowned. "It is too late to return Harry to his relatives—the blood wards have already fallen."
Harry smiled again—at least that part of the plan had been a success. He'd never have to return to the Dursleys again. There was no more protection there. And even though he hadn't actually managed to spend his entire summer the way he wanted, whatever was in store for him was a good deal better than his prospects at the Dursleys. He hoped.
"It was horribly reckless of you, Harry." Hermione muttered, glaring at him as the conversation continued around them. "You had us all scared to death. What were you thinking?"
Harry shrugged. "I was thinking that I wasn't going to spend another second in that place—but I wasn't about to endanger you or Ron by showing up on your doorstep and painting a big target for Voldemort."
Hermione huffed, crossing her arms. "So you just decided to wing it—lay low in muggle London? What were you doing for three weeks?"
Harry grinned again, leaning in closer to whisper conspiratorially. "Having sex and getting pissed of course—what else would a teenager do with the first bit of freedom."
Hermione flushed a little, and finally smiled. "So, you're a regular party animal now?"
"Of the worst kind—I'm downright feral." Harry snickered.
"I'm glad that you find this so amusing, Mr. Potter. Perhaps you, in your infinite wisdom might actually wish to pay attention to these plans—as they concern you."
Harry rolled his eyes, raising an eyebrow at Snape. The sour man was leaning against the counter, his arms crossed over his chest and his dark glare firmly in place.
"I really don't see how it matters whether I pay attention or not—you see I never actually get a say in what's happening to me so I might as well be surprised." Harry shrugged, ducking slightly when everyone in the room turned to look at him. Dumbledore's eyes weren't twinkling when he surveyed Harry. "Don't look at me like that—it's true and you know it. Now have you decided what you're going to do with me so I can piss and moan about it?"
Hermione smacked him upside the head. "Don't be rude—and you're acting like a child. This is serious, Harry."
"Indeed it is serious." Dumbledore agreed. "We must decide on a course of action."
"He can stay here!" Mrs. Weasley snapped, shaking off her husband when he put a hand on her shoulder.
"As much as you would love to have him, the Burrow does not offer nearly enough protection—wards only go so far. I have already expressed my desire that you and your family go into hiding. It's only a matter of time before Voldemort targets your entire family." Dumbledore explained calmly. "Voldemort will pursue Harry vehemently—the only hope of his continued safety is to establish a place of protection that will rival the protection he had at the Dursleys."
"I have a question." Harry raised his hand experimentally. "In the middle of all this hiding and protection, how am I supposed to get the chance to off the bastard?"
There was a sharp intake of breath, and Hermione smacked him upside the head again.
"What!? It's a valid question!" Harry rubbed his head gingerly. "I'm going to be seventeen in less than two weeks, I was doing just fine on my own and I'm really tired of all these bloody games! So how 'bout you all just back off and let me be so I can make a go at him—unless we're just waiting for him to die from old age?"
There was complete silence at this. Harry rolled his eyes. "Really? No one has an answer for that?"
"It isn't time for you to face him, Harry." Dumbledore said heavily. "You aren't ready."
"Will I ever be?" Harry countered. "How exactly does a person get ready to face the darkest wizard the world has ever known?"
There was more silence.
"Good. Now that that's settled." Harry stood up, but his casual exit was thwarted by Hermione pulling him back into his chair. "Okay. So it's not settled. What brilliant ideas do we have to prolong my untimely demise?"
"Don't be so morbid." Remus snapped. Harry shrugged again, averting his eyes from the werewolf.
"I do happen to have an idea." Dumbledore said slowly, drawing the attention back to himself. "It would work marvelously to give Harry the protection that he needs."
"But?" Harry asked wryly.
"But I surmise there will be a lot of resistance to this particular idea." Dumbledore leaned back in his chair.
"It must be really bad if you haven't just come out and said it yet." Harry muttered.
"I suggest that you get married."
Harry blinked at the man. "Married!? How the bloody hell will that help with anything? And who am I supposed to marry!?"
"There is a certain type of wedding bond—it's rather dated but it was often used to end wars and feuds. Tenetur Simul Concordium."
Hermione fidgeted, and Harry turned to look at her. "Care to explain?"
"It's a type of arranged marriage—with two warring families a daughter would be offered as a bride. The bond would ensure that the new bride was protected from the enemy family." Hermione explained quickly, frowning at Dumbledore. "But—I don't understand how you think that would help Harry. The protection is for the bride."
Dumbledore cleared his throat. "Yes. However, with a little tweaking I believe we can alter the binding spell to accept Harry in lieu of a bride."
"You mean accept him as the bride." Hermione asked sharply. "You want him to marry a man? And exactly what man did you have in mind, because so far as I know Voldemort doesn't have any family."
Harry swallowed thickly, glancing around the room. Everyone was staring at the headmaster—except Snape. Snape was glancing between Harry and the Headmaster with a rare look of foreboding on his face.
"I already mentioned that the spell would require a little tweaking." Dumbledore began slowly. "But I believe I could alter the bond enough that it accepts Voldemort and his followers as a sort of family group. In which case, Harry would simply need to marry someone with the Dark Mark."
Harry would have laughed—if he hadn't known that there was a perfectly valid candidate sitting in that very kitchen.
"No." Snape suddenly snapped. "Absolutely not. You have to be out of your mind if you think I would agree to that, Albus."
"Now, Severus. Just hear me out."
"No!" Snape crossed his arms tightly across his chest. "You cannot ask me to do this—I refuse. And I promise you Potter would refuse as well—especially when you tell him exactly what part of the ritual enacts the binding magic."
Harry looked over at Hermione. She only shook her head.
"I know it isn't the most appealing of circumstances—"
"What ritual?" Harry asked, raising an eyebrow when Snape refused to look at him.
"The binding is only completed upon consummation—the loss of virginity plays a key role in the bride's protection." Dumbledore explained calmly.
"Oh." Harry frowned. "But I'm not a virgin."
"The matter is settled then." Snape continued. "It's not even possible if the bride is not a virgin."
"That's not entirely true." Dumbledore's eyes were twinkling. "Since it is in fact the act of penetration that constitutes the shattering of a woman's chastity, I do believe we could find a way to make an allowance—"
"Are you insane!" Molly suddenly jumped to her feet. "You are talking about bartering away Harry's innocence."
"Wow." Harry muttered to Hermione. "This is going to be really awkward."
"When I tell them that it's not possible."
Hermione raised an eyebrow at him. "How so?"
"I'm not a virgin."
"They're talking about penetration—"
"Yeah. I got that part, Hermione." Harry snapped. "What I'm saying is that I'm not a virgin in that way."
Hermione's jaw dropped. "Oh."
"Yeah. Not how I planned on coming out of the closet at all." Harry sighed, standing up and clearing his throat loudly. No one paid any attention to him—Molly and Snape were arguing with Dumbledore, who continued twinkling merrily and shooting down their arguments smoothly and logically.
Remus was trying to interrupt. "I think we should let Harry have a say in this." He was ignored.
Harry sighed again, pulling out his wand and letting a loud 'bang' echo in the room. Finally, all eyes were on him again.
"As amusing as it is to sit here and listen to you argue over my innocence…" Harry started, fidgeting nervously. "I figure I ought to put a stop to it before blood is spilt. It won't work. I am not a virgin."
"I believe you have already mentioned that, Mr. Potter." Snape sneered. "However, the headmaster believes that in regards to the specifics of the bond that we can work around that."
Harry pinched the bridge of his nose. "I fully understand what the Headmaster thinks counts as virginity for the bond—I don't fit those requirements."
Snape's eyebrows shot up. Remus' jaw dropped, and Molly just stared at him
"You don't seem to understand, my boy." Dumbledore smiled humorlessly.
"No. It is you who doesn't understand." Harry gritted his teeth. "Are you really gonna make me spell it out for you?"
"Bluntness is always the best policy." Snape muttered, seemingly amused if the slight quirk of his lips was anything to go by.
"Okay. Bluntness it is." Harry ran a hand through his hair and took a deep breath. "I have had sex with another man—at which point I did in fact take it up the ass."
There was silence at this, and Dumbledore sputtered. "But—you… That was very irresponsible of you Harry!"
Harry snorted and didn't bother with a response as Molly had already turned back to Dumbledore and was shrieking at him – something about children's virginity not being a tool for the greater good. He rolled his eyes, content to let them argue as he glanced at Snape. Dark eyes narrowed at him, but the Potions Master looked like he might be fighting back a smile.
"Relieved?" Harry asked cheekily.
"You've no idea." Snape responded. "You've done the impossible, it seems – spoiling Albus' schemes just by being a normal, hormonal teenager. Good job."
Harry laughed at that, realizing suddenly that everyone's attention was back on him again – apparently he'd missed something important. "Er. . . What?"
"Have you had sex the other way around?" Dumbledore demanded bluntly. "Have you been the dominant partner at any time – with a man or a woman?"
"No. . ." Harry started slowly.
"Excellent! It will work then!" Dumbledore crowed. Molly had seemingly given up, shaking her head and running a hand down her face. Remus was staring at the ceiling in a 'lord help me' sort of way, and everyone else seemed torn between horror and hysterics.
"Excuse me!?" Snape growled. "You better not be suggesting what I think you're suggesting."
"My dear boy – we only need one type of virginity to make the Tenetur Simul Concordium bond work!"
Harry blinked slowly, before busting up laughing. "That's a good one! You're completely mad if you think Snape would let me top! Merlin – I can't imagine – you actually think Snape – Severus Snape – would bottom? For anyone! You have met the man, right? Bet he'd top like a boss, though."
Snape actually looked kind of flattered at Harry's assessment. "Thank you, Potter."
"He will for you, for this bond." Dumbledore said confidently. "After all, it's for—"
"If you say 'it's for the greater good,' I will kill you." Snape growled. "The answer is no, Albus. No. Absolutely not."
"You heard the man." Harry crowed in triumph. "Now, if you're done trying to get me to shack up with Snape, how 'bout we get back to killing ol' snakeface? Personally I think we should poison him – I know where I can get some basilisk venom! I think that's a good plan, a great plan!"
Dumbledore was staring at him, then at Snape – the look he wore was familiar, the grandfatherly 'I love you but I have never been so disappointed in you' look he seemed to do so well. Both Harry and Snape ignored him easily, instead roping Moody into a conversation about the likely hood of Harry getting close enough to stab the Dark Lord with a basilisk fang.
Later, when most of the Order had gone their separate ways Harry caught up to Snape as he was just about to step outside of the wards.
"Whew. That was a doozy." Harry started, watching the older man carefully. "Can you believe him?"
"Unfortunately, yes." Snape said flatly. "He's always had a skewed perspective when it came to defeating the Dark Lord."
"Right." Harry nodded, biting his lip and stuffing his hands in his pockets. "So. Am I right?"
"Do you top like a boss?"
Snape stared at him hard for a minute before stepping into his personal space. "Would you like to find out?"
Harry's breath hitched, and he nodded. "Fuck yes."
Snape smirked, leaning over to whisper in his ear. "Be very sure about that, Mr. Potter."
"I am sure."
Snape's smirk was very nearly feral as he grabbed Harry by the arm and dragging him two steps further from the house, right outside the wards. "You asked for it, Potter."
And they disappeared with a loud 'CRACK!'
The next morning, Harry came stumbling back to the Burrow and walked in on a scene of complete chaos.
"Where were you!?" Molly, Remus, Dumbledore and Hermione all demanded as soon as he walked in the door.
Harry grinned at them. "I was right."
"About!?" Hermione demanded.
"Snape tops like a fucking boss." Harry sighed, closing his eyes and leaning his head against the door he'd just come through. "Like a fucking boss."
"I thought you were vehemently against having sexual relations with Severus Snape!?" Dumbledore demanded. "And Severus – he didn't want to. . . with you!?"
"Huh?" Harry blinked at the old man. "Oh. No – the sex was fantastic. Don't think either of us were ever opposed to the sex. It's just – you know – we refuse to let it come into play with your mad schemes. By the way – I'm not a virgin in that way anymore either."
"But – but. . . Severus wouldn't. . ."
"Oh." Harry grinned wickedly. "I was wrong about that – turns out he would bottom for me, at least so he could fuck up your plans some more."
Dumbledore stood gaping at him, and Harry laughed as he pushed past Dumbledore and the gathered Order members, limping up the stairs and out of sight. Everyone watched him go before turning their attention back to the flabbergasted headmaster.
"Don't worry Albus – every teenager goes through a rebellious faze." Molly said gently.
"Harry isn't just any teenager. He's too important – we can't afford for him to do this."
Molly stared at him hard, before shaking her head. "And that, right there, is why you've lost him."