A/N-Here it is. I fell out of fanfiction again, and lost my stories. They are somewhere on my google drives, I just need to search them as they are also under random titles. I found this one on accident. But here it is. It's short because I split this chapter up, Harry's reaction and Severus to him are the next chapter, wherever the heck that is. It's again already written, just lost. Enjoy. I'm having difficulty uploading to P&S right now, so you guys get this first.
Severus sighed as looked at the three little boys sitting on the couch patiently. He and Albus and Remus had decided to be frank with them for a bit, just to see how they would take it. He at least wanted to warn them of what was going to happen, because tonight wasn't going to be like any other night.
They were going to sleep as a 5 year old, only to wake up at age 13. The Potion Master knew aging 8 years was going to be a process and he didn't want them to be afraid. He just wasn't sure how to go about it, the explaining bit at least.
"Uncle Severus, is this about us going back to our real ages?" Neville asked quietly when it became apparent that the three men were struggling to start.
Severus quirked an eyebrow as he looked at the little empath. "Yes, were those the flashbacks you were seeing then?" He asked carefully, as little pieces started to click into place.
"Yes, I was unsure of them, and I was confused but I understand now. That was us before," the little Gryffindor stated kindly. He knew now that the old Severus would never be that mean to him again, and he thankful about it.
"I'm sorry," Severus stated quietly, his eyes on Neville for the moment.
"It's alright, you won't do it again so I clearly forgive you. And Harry will too when we age back up and he understands," the tiny tot answered happily as he turned to look at his god brother who had lost interest and was playing with Remus's hands.
Severus nodded silently, his eyes flickering over to his godson who was being unusually quiet, his gray eyes shuttered. "What is it dragon?"
Draco shook his head quickly, his eyes dropping to his lap. "Nothing Uncle Sebbus," he murmured out.
"Will it hurt?" Neville asked quietly, ever the curious child.
"No, it's just like falling asleep, you won't feel a thing," Remus promised him softly.
"Draco, can I have a cuddle?" Albus asked carefully, aware of what might be wrong with his little one.
Draco glanced up at his grandfather, his eyes shining brightly with his unshed tears. He reached eagerly towards the man, just wanting reassurance and comfort. He had the strangest feeling that everything he had ever known was going to change. And he didn't know if he was ready for it, or even if they were ready for him. He welcomed the familiarity that came from the old man's magic and just decided not to think on it too much.
"Let's just go spend some time in the playroom, I know how much that relaxes you. There is nothing to be worried about," Severus said after a moment, interjecting cheer into his voice yet again. It was a joyous occasion, it was just bittersweet at the moment.
He shook his head, he would have to talk with Albus and Remus again about what might be the best course of action. But that would need to wait until the boy's are sleeping. He was unsure of their reactions, so he still felt his plan of separating them was the right move. But that was for a little bit later, now he would just enjoy the little time that they had left.
~&~&~&~The Red Room&~&~&~
Neville woke up with a silent gasp, as he looked around the unfamiliar room in confusion. Why was in here, where in the hell was here? Where were Harry and Draco? Was their change okay? He ran a hand through his dirty blonde hair before he slowly leaned over to grab his wand which happen to be conveniently on his bedside table? Hmm, where had it been all those weeks then, why did it suddenly appear now?
He knew logically speaking that if he was still in the Professor's house, then the man had spelled the bed with him in it. He knew that the man was thorough and would want to be alerted when his charges finally woke up. He couldn't allow that to happen which is why he was ever so careful not to move.
He softly casted a finite before he quietly slid out of bed. He had a few days to begin to come to terms with the changes but Draco and Harry hadn't. He didn't want either of them pulling away, it was crucial that they all stuck together. He wasn't stupid, he had a gut wrenching feeling that if he or Harry pulled away from Draco that would lead him straight to the dark and he didn't want to do that.
Neville sighed as he tucked his wand in his pocket, frowning as he realized that he would definitely need a holster sometime down the road or he could accidently spell himself, or in worst case scenario actually break his wand. He sighed softly, knowing that he would really need to get his own wand before they headed back to school. Since he stopped blocking his empath abilities, his father's wand felt awful in his hand. But walking around without a wand felt even worse so he would just have to deal with it for now.
He opened the door carefully, he didn't see anyone, and he surely didn't feel any magic. Unsure if Uncle Remus was still here or not, he still blocked his scent as a precaution. It was imperative that he talked to each boy before the adults did.
He didn't want Harry or Draco having doubts, as Harry's body was smaller and younger in ways he knew that he would wake up last. Feeling the way down the hall by his magic he followed Draco's magic until he was in front of a closed door. Taking a breath, he opened it and quickly disappeared inside before closing it again. He breathed out a sigh of relief when he didn't see Grandpa Albus anywhere, hopefully the old man was asleep, as he wasn't sure when Draco would wake up. He only knew it would be, before the morning and he needed to be here.
Neville locked the door the muggle way before he took a seat in the chair next to the bed, taking his wand and dismantling the man's alerting charms on Draco's bed as he leaned back to wait. He didn't have to wait that long, maybe an hour or so later he saw the blonde boy start to stir, he didn't want to startle him so he let him wake up on his own. He would speak only when the boy was ready.
~*~*The Blue Room~*~*~**~*~*~
Draco nearly leaped out of bed with a strangled gasp, his hand over his heart as it pounded frantically in his heart. He would need to tell Severus to never use that potion on anyone ever again. It had paralyzed his body, and he had been unable to move while the memories merged themselves together. It was like watching a muggle movie, the memory coming forth before he could stop it.
They had watched a few, the night before Christmas. Uncle Severus and Grandpa Albus and Uncle Remus had enlarged the couch and they had all had a giant cuddle fest as they watched Holiday movies. He felt the tears sting his eyes as he knew that he would never get a chance to do that again. He knew that Grand—the Headmaster would never hold him like that ever again. He bit his bottom lip trying to stop the tears, Malfoys didn't cry his father always said.
But his father was wrong, as he remembered Remus telling him it was alright to cry, that sometimes that's the only way to make the pain go away. He swallowed hard as he glanced around the room, wondering were Neville and Harry had gone. Had they left him? They had promised him that they wouldn't, if they hadn't where had they gone? He swallowed thickly as he put his hand over his nose and mouth to stop the sob from escaping.
"Draco, we're fine and we haven't forgotten what you asked of us," Neville blurted out quickly when it became apparent that the Slytherin was going to break out into hysterical tears.
Draco startled and turned to look at Neville incredulously as he frowned, and quickly wiped those stupid tears from his eyes. "How long have you even been there Longbottom? You know that it's customary for one to knock before they enter someone's else's room. I would have thought with your pureblooded training you would know that," he replied automatically his tone just as snide as can be.
Neville sighed softly, aware immediately what the boy was doing. This is what the adults had meant when they said lashing out, but Harry wouldn't do this. This was mostly Draco and he had a reason to be. He didn't fault the boy; however, he wasn't going to tolerate the abuse that was for sure.
"Take off the Malfoy mask Draco, I don't want to converse with it at the moment," Neville stated calmly watching in amusement at the other male's reaction.
Draco gasped softly before he could stop himself as he looked at the boy across from him, this wasn't the same Longbottom he knew. Well, not the one he remembered, this Longbottom was just Neville. He swallowed thickly as the choked feeling returned full forced as he bent down to look at the comforter. It was the Ravenclaw one that held eagles on it, he had picked it himself. He clenched his fist until it ached trying to get control of himself, what was going on here?
"This is who I am, so just deal with it," Draco spat out unpleasantly before he could help himself. He didn't understand why he was on the defensive; the other boy hadn't said anything to him to warrant a response. Not to mention there was a part of him that was yelling at him to shut up. He didn't want Neville to go away, so why was he being a jerk to the other boy? He was so confused.
"This is not who you are, I know you Draco Lucian Malfoy; and this spiteful character you're allowing free, isn't him. The Draco I know is kind, and he's sarcastic without being mean, like Uncle Severus is. He's also afraid that Harry and I will forget him and everything we shared," Neville acknowledged kindly as he watched the other's boy's face to see how much his words affected him.
Draco continued to look down, not wanting Longbottom to know that he had hit the nail on the head in regards to his emotions. He had all but forgotten in that moment that Neville was empathetic, but he shouldn't have. He clenched his fist tighter and placed it over his heart as he looked up at the Gryffindor boy. He swallowed thickly the urge to cry getting stronger the longer he resisted. He couldn't give into the feelings, he needed to make sure that everything would be okay.
"Where's Harry?" Draco asked softly, unsure how he should feel towards this Gryffindor who he had come to love as his own brother. He would just change the subject and get it off of him for the moment.
"He's still small, Severus doesn't want us in there. He's afraid Harry might react poorly, he's right though," Neville said as he wiggled his fingers as he reacted to the influx in magic in the air. He knew what Draco was doing but he would allow it for now, but not for long; it would need to be addressed.
"He's going to be upset?" Draco asked slowly, feeling dread. He refused to acknowledge that not ten minutes ago he was lashing out at Neville. They still hadn't talked about it, and for now he was thankful.
"Yes, he doesn't like waking up alone, he's going to jump to the wrong conclusions. He's going to think that we don't want anything to do with him now," Neville replied tightly.
Draco nodded slowly before he looked up at the boy, really looked up at him. "You're different now," he noticed, he could see that Neville wasn't anything like he had before the accident.
Neville gave a careless shrug. "I was allowed to flourish and be myself here, Uncle Severus wanted me to do good. He didn't want me beaten down, of course I matured in the way I was suppose too," he laughed as he realized that under the most notorious, dangerous man in Hogwarts he had become more confident than ever.
Draco chuckled in response, not sure if he felt the same way. He didn't feel confident like he had before. He felt different, how was he supposed to feel, what did this even mean?
"Different is good Draco, don't let anyone say that's it a bad thing because it's not. I will always remember this holiday season. Without either of you, I wouldn't have thrived, you guys made it possible. You accepted me for who I was, no one has ever done that before," Neville chuckled darkly.
"But what about when we go back to school?" Draco asked skeptically knowing how peer pressure went. He felt so ashamed of the things that he had did, the names he had called the other kids. He was a right git, this was why he was most afraid of Neville and Harry ignoring him.
"Nothing changes, you're still my brother in all but blood, well actually in blood too. I think you're actually my cousin twice removed on the Black side, same as Harry," Neville chuckled as he worked that out.
"What if the other kids say something? You know they will," Draco said frowning even as his stomach warmed at the other male's declaration. He knew if they were pressured too much they would give up on the friendship. But he also knew himself, and he didn't think he would be able to survive if they did that to him. They were the only ones where he had been open with and they in return. They all had to be in this together.
"I. Don't. Give. A. Shit. They don't matter to me, you and Harry do," Neville said with a smug look as he reached forward to pull the blonde boy to him to hug him. He could feel the other boy's emotions. The Slytherin was so afraid of getting rejected, and he wanted him to know that was the furthest thing from his mind.
"Nothing no one can say will make you change your mind about me?" Draco asked in a distressed tone despite struggling to hold back his emotions. They wanted to come forth and it showed as he hugged the other boy tightly. He was afraid to let go, and he didn't even want to think about going home. He didn't want anything between them to change.
"I promise you dragon, there is nothing you can do to get rid of me or Harry. We Gryffindors are stubborn ones, once we're stuck on you, we're stuck like glue, "Neville said softly, his grip tightening around the other boy as he heard a suspicious sniffle.
Draco pressed his face into the younger boy's shoulder, unable to help the emotion's threatening to overcome him. He only hugged the other boy tighter, allowing himself to live in the moment. "Promise me, once we get in school nothing will change. That we can still talk if I have a problem? Promise me that you'll still care?" Draco pleaded out tearfully.
"There is nothing nobody in this world or the next can do that will make me think otherwise. I will always be here for you and Harry, Draco. I promise you that," Neville whispered fiercely in the other boy's ear.
Neville held him tight, aware that they weren't alone anymore. He could feel two other magical signatures just outside the closed door but he didn't draw any attention to it. He concentrated and felt them out, not surprised when he felt to be the Professor and the Headmaster. They weren't coming in so he figured they were listening in, which he was fine with, but he knew Draco wouldn't be so that is why he didn't draw attention to it.
He flexed his fingers trying to feel out Harry's magic, only to come back to himself as Draco finally released a choked sob. The other boy needed this, he didn't need to keep it in, he was content to stand here until Draco told him otherwise. Because this was his brothers, and that is what brother's do.
Severus glanced back at the closed door before his gaze when over to Albus, the man had wanted to go in when he had heard Draco crying but he knew that it wouldn't go over well. His godson was very proud and for him to cry with Neville there was something big happening here, and they didn't want to make the situation worse. He felt slightly guilty standing here eavesdropping on the boy's conversation but didn't know how else they would have gained this knowledge. They had no idea that Draco had felt this way, maybe they hadn't been right in thinking the children needed their privacy.
"When do you think Harry should wake up?" Albus asked carefully.
"Soon, it could be anytime between now and the morning. The potion affected them all differently, and even though we've been countering the damage done to his body he is still smaller than the other too," Severus explained.
Albus nodded slowly, before he turned back to look at the closed door. He wanted to be in the room with the boys. He needed them to know there was nothing to fear, nothing would change how he felt towards them. They were his grandsons in all but blood and if he wanted to get technical, they were definitely related if they went back far enough.
Severus was aware that the old man wasn't even listening to him, and he didn't blame him. He wanted to be in the room as well. He moved to knock on the door, when he froze as he suddenly heard a blood-curdling scream coming from the boy's shared room. He said nothing, only knowing that the only boy in the room was Harry and Merlin he hoped nothing was wrong. He didn't even hear the other boys and Albus making their way behind him, too intent on getting to his child.
~&~&~&The boy's shared room~&~&~&~&~&~&~&~
Harry woke up with shout, his heart beating frantically in his chest as he looked around the room. He was very confused, even as the charmed light over his bed spelled on and allowed him to look around. He knew this room, he knew these beds, but where were the other boys who slept in them?
The raven-haired teen carefully pulled the blankets back, only to freeze as he heard footsteps coming towards his room. In hindsight Harry knew that whoever was coming to him was clearly no danger to him as he knew this was Severus's manor. That didn't stop the terror when his door was suddenly swung open, and a dark figure appeared.
The tiny teen screamed again, but this time his magic reacting with him as it released a torrent of accidental magic. Harry quickly scrambled back on his bed and underneath the covers as if that would protect him. He wasn't even thinking about his wand, just that his thoughts were much to jumbled for him to process everything right now.
Severus groaned quietly from where he had been thrown into the wall, by Harry's magic. Well if he ever wondered why exactly the Dark Lord felt threatened by a baby 13 years ago, he now knew. The child's magic was strong and he knew better then to attempt to enter the room again. At least not until the child was a little bit more calmer.
"I could have told you that was a really bad idea Uncle Severus," Neville said plainly as he stepped out of the room, with Draco's hand in his. He held onto the hand tightly, even as the other male tried to let go.
"I remember you telling me a lot of things were bad ideas," Severus said with a playful scowl on his face.
"No one listens to a baby though," Neville giggled out with a shrug of his own. Well at least he knew that the relationship he had his with godfather was still okay.
"Very true," Severus said his lips twitching as they tried to smile at the look of longing Draco was giving the Headmaster. They would have much more time to get to know everyone again as soon as Harry was okay.
"I think Draco and I should go in now," Neville said after a moment of silence had gone by.
"Absolutely not," Severus said vehemently. He was not going to risk their lives, especially because Harry didn't seem to be aware he was even doing anything.
"I wasn't asking sir, I'm telling you it's time for Draco and I to go in now. Harry is expecting us," Neville replied firmly.
"I do not like that tone Mr. Longbottom," Severus warned quietly.
"I can be punished for it later sir, I would like to go get my brother now. He's under the impression that Draco and I haven't kept our promise," Neville said a little of his frustration starting to show at still being in the hallway instead of in the room with Harry.
"It's alright Severus, they will be okay," Albus replied quietly, his eyes sad as they glanced at the blonde Slytherin who refused to make eye contact with him. Well that was that then, wasn't it?
"Grandpa Albus is right, Harry won't hurt us," Draco said softly, even as his eyes stayed to the ground. His body tensed as he heard the soft intake of breath but he didn't dare look up, he didn't want to hope that the Headmaster could still love him.
Severus gave a curt nod, still unsure and not at all happy about the nonchalant attitude that Neville now had. He took a deep breath as they carefully walked into the room, only to jump back when the door suddenly slammed shut once they were inside. He glanced back at Albus with a look of annoyance even as he tried the handle. They were locked out yet again, and had nothing to do but wait.