Disclaimer: Not mine. Never will be.

A/N: Will it help if I say I'm sorry. I hope so. I'M SORRY. Forgive me. But I had been so excited that I would journey to London that I couldn't concentrate on writing anything. But finally here it is. The new chapter. Hope you like it.

Chapter 18

Harry pressed his face against Draco's neck, deeply breathing in the unique scent of the blond.

"I love you, Draco."

Harry couldn't prevent a light chuckle to escape his lips. "Even when I can't imagine how I could fall for such an arrogant Slytherin."

"You fell victim to my great charm and beauty." A tired voice whispered beside his ear, warm breath tingling his skin.

Harry's whole body tensed up. Slowly and careful he lifted his head up and to the side--and met the amused gaze out of sleepy silver eyes just inches from his own. Silver eyes that he had feared he would never see again.


A huge wave of relief swept over Harry. Draco was awake and he was okay--and he had heard what he had said.

In sudden embarrassment Harry felt how his face heated up in a fierce blush.

"You heard me?"

Draco's eyes softened and Harry had the feeling of loosing himself in the silver depths. He shivered. How was it that he never before had noticed how expressive these beautiful eyes were?

Draco raised one hand and gently placed it on Harry's cheek. He smiled as the black haired boy leaned into the touch.

"Don't be embarrassed." He winked teasingly. "I told you that you would fall for me sooner or later. You never had a chance."

Harry rolled his eyes, cursing his red cheeks. "Aren't we a bit too self confidant, Malfoy?"

Draco smirked. "No. A Malfoy always gets what he wants. I always knew you would fall in love with me."

Harry shook his head and took Draco's hand in his, bringing it to his lap where he held it softly in his.

"Then you knew more than me."

He was so glad that Draco was okay. However, he wished the giddy feeling in him would disappear. He felt as if he had been hit with a Cheering Charm and he needed all his self-control not to start to giggle like crazy. Maybe he should ask Madame Pomfrey if she could help him.

A touch on his face brought Harry away from his thoughts. Confused he looked from Draco to the hand slowly shifting to the back of his neck.


Draco smirked and winked, before he used his hold on Harry's neck to bring him down to his face--and his waiting mouth.

Harry moaned as he felt the soft lips on his own, gently stroking his in a slow motion. It took him just seconds before he returned the kiss, letting himself fall into Draco's touch, scent and taste, forgetting everything else around him.

After some time Harry broke away from the kiss, panting, silently cursing his need to breath. Draco smiled down at him and it confused Harry before he noticed that he lay on the bed on his back, the Blond halfway lying on him.

He frowned. How had Draco managed that without him noticing?

Draco chuckled and leaned his forehead against Harry's. "I'm a better kisser than I thought. I bet I could do everything do you without you even noticing, as long as I don't stop kissing you."

Harry huffed and tried to sit up, however Draco's weight prevented nearly every movement.

"You just surprised me. And now let me go. You are wounded and should rest."

Draco raised one eyebrow and Harry felt a blush adding itself to his already flushed face as he found himself caught under the steady silver gaze. And it didn't help that his own body was relishing in the warmth and the touch of the blond. It……he was craving for every single touch.

He had been touched so seldom in his life, touched like someone cared for him. Maybe it was because of this lack of that he hadn't fought against Draco's advances like he should have.

In addition--in the short moments in which Harry had felt Draco through the bond he had felt that the feelings of the Slytherin were true once. Draco truly loved him. Even when he couldn't believe that someone could love him like that.

Harry sighed deeply and let his body relax.

"You really should rest, Draco." He whispered, carefully laying one hand on Draco's shoulder were the knife wound had been. He knew that Madame Pomfrey had healed the wound, but he could feel a bandage under his fingers to protect the still tender skin. It had been so close.

A soft glow appeared in Draco's eyes.

"Don't worry. I'm okay." He covered Harry's hand with his own and gently held it against his shoulder as the other boy made a movement to take it away.

Harry stared at the hand on his own. Draco's hand was bigger than his own, his fingers longer and more elegant. Once he had seen the hands of a musician who played piano. Draco's fingers were just like his had been.

He swallowed. "You nearly died. And it was just because I felt your pain through the suddenly awakened bound that I could come to you." His face darkened and he turned his eyes away. "Not that I could help you."

He hadn't been able to do anything to help Draco. He had been so helpless without his wand and in front of a creature created by a magic he never knew existed. He felt so helpless, more so than when he had faced Voldemort last year.

The grip of Draco's hand tightened around his. "Don't dare to think that what happened is your fault. I know that you have the habit to blame yourself for everything bad happening. But this had nothing to do with you. This is just between my brother and me."

"I couldn't do anything to help you."

"Do you think I could?" Draco shook his head and rolled down from Harry, sitting up. His movements were slower than usual, showing the exhaustion the blond must feel. "I let myself hurt because I was to shocked to move when I saw an old friend attack me. Poor old Wenshore."

Shocked Harry sat up. He never had thought that Draco……

"You knew him?!"

He remembered the open wounds on the possessed body, wounds that just came from torture. What had the old man gone through before he had died? And how cruel was Aaron to send his own brother the murdered body of a friend to kill him.

Draco nodded slowly. His face was calm, but Harry could see anger glowing in the depth of the silver eyes.

"Wenshore had served our family for many years. He was there as long as I can remember and helped to raise me." A shudder went through the slender body and before Harry could decide otherwise he took one of Draco's hands in his and held it between his own.

"He was the one who told me about the article." Draco whispered, gently squeezing Harry's hand. "I asked him to get it from the Daily Prophet before they could publish it." He sighed. "Obviously he couldn't prevent it. I'm sorry, Harry."

Harry tried to swallow the sudden dryness of his throat away.

"He was the servant you mentioned on top of the tower?"

Draco nodded, his gaze locked on Harry, waiting for his reaction. "Yes. But you have to understand that I asked him to do it, it wasn't an order. He wanted to help you and me."

Harry closed his burning eyes. He wouldn't cry. He wouldn't.

Gently Draco wiped a lone tear away that had escaped one green eye.

"Wenshore was always against Voldemort, even at the time when my father served the Dark Lord." Draco whispered in a soothing voice, leaning his forehead against Harry's. "He always fought against him as good as he could and was aware that someday he would die."

A low chuckle escaped the blond Slytherin, but Harry could feel the wetness of tears on his cheeks that weren't his. Draco was crying?

Carefully he lifted his hands and slung them tightly around Draco's neck, bringing his own body nearer to the other, searching for its warmth. Without a word and without hesitating Draco returned the desperate hug, and with his arms locked around Harry's waist, he lowered them both onto the bed until they were lying side by side.

"He was aware that he would die, but he continued fighting with all his might." Draco continued his voice muffled where his face was buried in Harry's neck. The only indication to that he was crying was the wetness Harry felt on his skin. But he didn't mind. He just held tighter onto the other boy.

"You can't imagine how happy he was when he had heard that you killed Voldemort. My father told me he took me in his arms and danced around the room with me, glad that I would grow up in a world without Voldemort. And then He came back last year……"

A choked sob escaped Draco, stealing every word from his lips. Harry closed his eyes and buried his face in soft blonde hair, trying to comfort the other boy in his grief as well as he could.

"Do you think he will like it?" Someone whispered. Low rustle was heard.

"Of course. How could he not like them? They are adorable." A voice whispered back, followed from giggles.

"And even when he wouldn't like them; we can't stop it anymore. We never had such luck before."

"Yes that's true."

"So it is decided. We will show them to him tomorrow before classes."

It was a tired Ron Weasley who fell into the cushion of the couch with a low exhausted moan.

"And?" Hermione asked, without taking her eyes away from the book in her lap. She ignored the moans coming from the Redhead and just sat more comfortable in the loveseat before the fireplace, relishing the warmth of the crackling fire.

With great effort Ron lifted his head, red hair looking as if it never had seen a brush. Weary eyes locked on the relaxed Hermione.

"I couldn't find him. And I searched everywhere, expect the places you forbid me to go."

"Good. That means he his in the infirmary or in the private rooms of Malfoy."

Ron's head sunk back onto the couch. He sighed. "You know. I have thought about what we want do to." Her murmured, interrupting the silence between them.

Hermione looked up from her book. One eyebrow rose in mock surprise.

Ron ignored her look. "Do you really think we should do this? "

With a resolute movement the bushy haired girl closed her book. "What do you mean?"

"I mean, shouldn't we let Harry make his own decision? What when he really loves Malfoy?"

"Do you really think so? I can imagine that Harry fell in love with Malfoy--he is good looking, after all. But I can't imagine, even in my dreams that Malfoy could truly love Harry. That would mean that he had to change his whole behaviour, would have to change the things he believes in." She shook her head. "He can never be something else then a bloody pureblood loving Slytherin."

Ron sat up to face her. "But what we want to do is……"

"We are doing the right thing, Ron, don't worry." Hermione interrupted, leaning forward to touch his arm. "Soon Harry will be with us again."

She smiled happily that let her brown eyes shine and stood up. "And then it will be like in old times. But now we have to go to bed. We have classes tomorrow. Goodnight, Ron. And stop worrying, okay?"

Obediently Ron nodded. Silently he watched Hermione climbing up the stairs to the dorms of the girls, the book under one arm. Then he let out a deep sigh and fell back into the cushions, staring up at the ceiling.

"I really don't think we're doing the right thing." He whispered. "And I think you are a bit to obsessed with the whole thing, too, Hermione."

He shook his head. He really didn't know what he should do. Hermione was his best friend and he didn't want to refuse her his help, but Harry was his friend, too. And he always had the opinion that the black haired boy, who was his friend since the first year, knew what he was doing.

"Argh." Frustrated with himself and the whole situation Ron jumped up and ran to his room.


It was warm and comfortable, surrounding him completely. He didn't want to leave here.


Harry frowned and buried deeper into the warmth, trying to escape the annoying voice. Why couldn't they leave him alone.

"Harry!" The voice sounded more desperate--and more familiar. He knew the voice. He really liked its owner. Maybe he should wake up to please the speaker?

"Harry, come on, wake up." A hand touched his shoulder, slightly shaking him.

Fighting himself out of his slumber Harry groaned and turning his head he opened his eyes wearily. He blinked into the brightness of the light streaming through the windows--the light of a new day--until his eyes managed to focus onto the face hovering over him.

Green eyes widened in surprise.


A somewhat forced half smile appeared on Ron Weasley's face. He withdrew his hand from Harry's shoulder and watched as the shorter boy sat up.

"Yeah, it's me."

Harry noticed that the Redhead avoided to look at the sleeping blond beside him and swallowed a sigh.

Careful he slung his arms around his knees and caught Ron's wandering gaze with his own.


Ron lifted his shoulders in a helpless gesture.

"Listen, Harry." He began in a low voice. "I'm sorry about yesterday. I shouldn't have said the things I said and I'm sorry that I didn't believe your feelings for Malfoy were sincerely. It's still hard to believe." He added, this time staring at the sleeping figure of the Slytherin.

Harry followed his gaze and couldn't help but to smile at the relaxed face of Draco. A few wayward strands of his hair hung into his face, giving him an adorable ruffled look.

From the corner of his eyes Harry saw a shudder ran through Ron's body as he tenderly brushed the hair away.

"Did you think I weren't shocked, too, as I learned this new feelings Draco had for me? I was angry that he did that to me, confused that someone even could have those kind of feelings for me and a lot more feelings were battling in me from the time I met him at the train just three weeks ago."

Harry lifted his eyes to Ron, standing there and listening to him.

"But can you imagine the confusion, the fear I felt when suddenly I discovered that I didn't hate him anymore? Even you have to agree with me when I say that I wasn't raised with love and though never learned to love. Living at the Dursleys' was hell and I can just thank any good spirit out there that I didn't become a new Voldemort."

Ron flinched as he mentioned the name, but Harry ignored him. He thought about his own words. When he thought back at his live, he really had to be thankful. It would have been so easy to spread the hate he felt for the Dursleys' to all Muggles in the world and to become the new Dark Lord with the wish to kill all those people. So he had to ask himself what went right in his life, or more precisely, what went wrong in Tom Riddles early years.

What was the real cause that made Tom Riddle the feared, Muggle hating Dark Lord Voldemort?

"So, you really love him?" Ron asked with a hesitant voice, breaking Harry away from his thoughts.

Harry leaned back onto his hands. "What do you think?"

Ron shifted his gaze from Harry to the sleeping Draco, biting his lower lip. Harry could see the uneasiness in his friend and he nearly felt pity. But just nearly. It was now Ron's turn to understand and accept this new situation or he would loose his friendship. And surely this wasn't easy for the Redhead, he being the one who had hated the blond Slytherin the most from their trio since first year.

"I think……I think you lo……like him," Ron stammered, nervous raking one hand through his hair. "But it is hard to believe that Malfoy could feel such a thing as love. You have to admit that he was cruel to us in the past years; saying Mudblood to 'Mione and always trying to fight with you."

He sighed and his shoulders sacked down. "Can you really tell me that he isn't the boy any more who thinks purebloods are better than everyone else?"

Harry looked at the said Slytherin. Slowly he trailed a finger down one smooth cheek.

"No, I can't tell you. But I think he will be more quiet around Hermione and you, and if just to stay on my good side."

With a deep sigh Ron fell onto the chair beside the bed, the one in which Draco's parents had slept in. Shortly Harry wondered where they had gone.

"I can't believe this." Ron moaned, covering his face with his hands. "I have the feeling somehow I missed something. Before the holidays all was fine--well except the fact that You-know-who came back--and when I came back to live an equal normal year, I find this."

He waved at Harry, sitting on the bed beside a peaceful sleeping Draco Malfoy.

"The same question I asked myself a lot in the past few weeks." Harry murmured and carefully climbed down from the bed.

Then he let his gaze drift to the window behind the bed, looking outside. The sun was standing low on the horizon, barely to see behind the Forbidden Forest.

"Its past six or so." Ron answered the unasked question. With a muffled groan he stood up and went to stand beside the black haired boy. "I couldn't sleep and so I decided to come and visit you."

Red spots appeared on his cheeks as Harry turned to look at him with his green eyes.

"Listen, Harry." It burst out of the large Redhead before Harry could even open his mouth. "You know I never liked Malfoy, but I think I can bury my hate for him--if he behaves that is and not insults my family--but I can do it. I don't want to loose your friendship."

Speechless Harry stared up at his friend. His first and best friend since first year. For a few moments he just stood there and tried to convince himself that this wasn't a dream, that Ron really had said those words to him.

"You really mean it?" He asked, hating his weak voice and fighting the tears that threatened to fall from his burning eyes.

Embarrassed Ron looked everywhere but at his friend, rubbing the back of his head.

"Of course I do. You're my best friend and I will not let Malfoy come between us."

Swallowing, Harry furiously rubbed the wetness away from his eyes, before he flashed Ron a bright grin--and jumped on him to give him a tight hug.

"Thanks, Ron."

Ron stood stiff as a stick with Harry's arms around him, his hands fluttering uneasily at his sides. Harry sensed his friends uneasiness and wanted to step away; however before he could even move, Ron's arms slung themselves around his waist as equal tightly as his own.

"It is okay, mate. I will be your friend as long as you want me and beyond."

Harry chuckled and shortly let himself relax into the embrace, even when a part of his brain started to compare this hug with the once Draco and he shared.

It was an annoyed sounding voice that broke them apart after a few minutes.

"This is really sweet, but would you mind letting my boyfriend go, Weasel?"

Both boys--one with red hair and one with black hair--jumped back from each other, their eyes shifting to the bed the same time, a surprised look in them.

Glowing silver eyes met their gaze, one eyebrow raised slightly. Then the eyes drifted shortly to Ron's hands still being on Harry's waist, before they rose again to meet wide brown eyes, the glowing intensifying, this time with a possessive gleam in them.

Ron swallowed and hurriedly hid his hands behind his back.

Harry just rolled his eyes and stepped beside the bed.

"Morning, Draco." He smiled and brushed his lips shortly over Draco's cheek.

Blushing Ron looked away from the sight of his best friend kissing his rival……his former rival.

A happy smile chased away the scowl on Draco's face as he returned Harry's chaste kiss, taking one of his hand in his own to keep him at his side. And away from the Weasley. He really hadn't liked the sight of his Harry in Ron Weasley's arms when he had woken up.

"And, has he finally accepted it?" He asked dryly without looking at the Redhead.

"Yes. He came here to tell me he is sorry." Harry smiled at his best friend. However, from one moment to the other a shadow darkened his face and his eyes shifted to his feet. "Good to know that one of my old friends is on my side."

Draco scowled and tightened his grip onto Harry's hand.

"There are more people which are on your side." Ron said enthusiastically, before the blond could open his mouth. He stepped to Harry and shook him slightly by his shoulders. "You'll see. Not all will believe in the lies of this damn article. Especially our Dorm mates. And from all the other we will protect you."

Draco swallowed a growl, fighting the urge to slap the hands away from Harry that kept touching him. He couldn't insult Harry's friends anymore when he wanted to be with the brunette.

"So, one of your friends has returned to you." He kept his voice steady, one allowing his annoyance for the Weasley to be heard. "And Granger?"

Ron's face dropped. Slowly he backed away from Harry.

"Hermione doesn't believe that your feelings are real, Harry. She thinks that Malfoy here has given you a potion or put you under a spell. And I'm not sure that anything could convince her otherwise."

Harry swallowed and held more firmly onto Draco's hand. Hermione didn't believe him? How could that be? It had always been Ron who had hated the Blond the most and not Hermione.

An uncomfortable silence settled between the three that none of them knew how to break. The opening of the door saved them from their predicament.

With wide grins on their faces no other then the Weasley twins burst into the Hospital wing, Fred carrying a small package.

"Harry!" George yelled out, running toward the stunned boy and ignoring his younger brother and the Slytherin. Fred followed him, and both successfully cornered Harry beside the bed.

"Harry, we've been looking all over for you. We have……"

"……something for you. Here." And without another word Fred gave Harry the little package he was carrying.

Harry eyed the thing in his hands suspiciously. It was not big, comfortable fitting into palm of one hand. It was light, too, and wrapped in a red cloth that felt very soft on his skin.

"What is it?"

Two similar grins appeared on the twins faces, a grin Harry often had seen on the two brothers. Mostly when they told him about a prank of them.

Unconsciously he held the package further away from him.

"It's our new invention."

"Yeah, and we already sold some of them. I think……"

"……it is the best invention we ever made. And because it is thanks to you……"

"……we want to present you with one of our precious."

Harry gaze shifted between the two brothers back and forth. Then back to the thing in his hand.

"Come on. Open it." Ron urged, a curious gleam in his eyes.

Sighing Harry fought against the urge to shake his headand hoping that whatever it was wouldn't explode into his face, he unwrapped the red cloth.

Silence followed when everybody stared at the thing sitting on Harry's hand.

Okay, okay, sorry for this cliffy, but it is a soft one. You will see what the twins gave Harry in the next chapter. Annd more Draco/Harry fluff. I wanted to add it in this chapter, but……I didn't manage and I didn't want to let you wait any longer. And a new teacher. Hope to see ya.