Chapter 7: Don't Leave Me (Part Two)
Draco swept through the hallways with a manner vaguely reminiscent of his former head of house. He thanked the gods for the empty hallways as he made his way up towards the hospital wing. Stopping at a statue of a rearing lion, he tapped the lion's tail with his wand and watched as a set of double door appeared in the wall and opened up. Glancing around Remus' quarters, he didn't see the former professor anywhere in sight and was about to settle in an armchair to wait when movement from amidst the comforters on the giant bed caught his attention. Quickly crossing the room, he looked down to see a dark haired boy tossing about violently, as if caught in the throws of a nightmare. Gently, he tried shaking the boy, trying to wake him up. When this had little effect, he pulled out his wand and whispered, "Finite Incantatum."
He flinched slightly as whimpers
and screams met his ears and he shook the boy harder.
"Wake up. It's just a dream. Wake up."
Nothing could have prepared him
for the shock that awaited him when the boy in his grasp opened his eyes.
Realization dawned on Draco as he stared into those fathomless green eyes.
"Harry…?" he asked weakly, swallowing to try to overcome the sickening feeling in the pit of his stomach. No, this bandaged and injured man in front of him couldn't be his former school enemy. He was too pale, too frail, and too weak. The Harry Potter he knew was stronger than this. Harry Potter had been begging for money in Knockturn Alley just a few weeks ago, he reminded himself. Draco lost himself in the frightened green eyes and knew.
Watch their eyes. Eyes are the window to the soul.
That your idea of a pep talk, Potter?
No, just the last words to me from a great hero.
Those were the last words spoken between them before they headed into the final battle, afraid yet confident, children fighting in a war where the lines between good and evil had blurred.
Draco jolted out of his thoughts to look at the boy, no, the man whose shoulders he was clutching. He ran a hand through Harry's messy hair.
"Sssh..." he said softly as he tried to calm the Boy-Who-Lived. "It's me. I'm not going to hurt you. Just calm down, relax…"
"It's hard for him to do that."
Draco glanced up to see Remus standing a few feet away, carrying his wand and a bottle of some sort of potion.
"I came to get you for the staff
meeting and…" Draco began.
"It's alright," Remus said as he
placed the potion down on the nightstand. "I see you took down the silencing
"Does he always put them up?"
"Yes," Remus said sighing. "Ha-
er, James insists on them because of the nightmares. Says it's a precaution. I
have a small countermeasure though, a little observation charm that lets me
know if things get bad."
"Ingenious, professor," Draco smugly replied as his eyes scanned Harry's body.
"What happened?" he asked as his eyes looked up to the werewolf, not missing the look of fear that passed over Harry's face.
Remus sighed as he glanced between Draco and Harry, waiting for Harry's small nod before speaking. "He was tortured and imprisoned during the war. The rest, well, Dobby found him washed up on the beach near my house."
Draco nodded as silence enveloped the room.
"Brilliant idea," he said finally and the other two faces turned towards him curiously. "Calling him by his father's name. Easy to remember and close enough to the truth."
"Draco…" Lupin spoke finally after a few minutes of uncomfortable silence had passed between them.
"I came to fetch you for the meetings. We're going to be discussing Harry and… I had wanted to tell you what I saw in Knockturn Alley that day. But now, knowing that Harry's here… what should I tell them?"
"I… I can't… Malfoy, please, don't…" Harry said as he looked up at Malfoy, his eyes pleading with the blonde.
"No more Draco?" Draco asked as he smirked at Harry.
"Please…" Harry begged weakly, his green eyes meeting Draco's silver ones in a desperate attempt to persuade the other man.
"Harry… you don't know what it was it's like, knowing you're alive. You don't know what it was like when they declared you dead finally. It-"
"You broke your promise, Malfoy. I thought Malfoys never went back on their word," Harry said, slightly glaring at Draco.
"I had to, I went searching…"
"I know," Harry replied curtly, interrupting the blonde's explanation. "What part of give up did you not understand?"
"How could I, Harry? I never once believed in that Boy-Who-Lived crap, but there is one thing I believed in – you, Harry. When I would tease you, when Snape would take points, whenever something happened, one thing never changed – your eyes. They had this passion, this determination, this glare, like when you spotted the snitch and nothing, not even Voldemort himself, could stop you. And when I saw you in Knockturn Alley, I… that fire was gone… And I had to know why. What happened to kill that fire?"
Draco watched patiently as Harry lay there, apparently thinking this over before finally speaking, his voice devoid of all emotion. "Are you finished?"
"Yes," Draco said reluctantly as he sighed and resisted the urge to push the hair out of Harry's eyes.
"Good," Harry snapped tersely. "Then leave. Both of you. Please."
Draco stood up reluctantly after exchanging a glance with Remus, who nodded. Going to the door, he waited for Remus to join him.
"Take care of yourself, Harry," Remus said as he made sure that all the necessary potions were on the nightstand. "And remember, if you need me, you know how to reach me. The House Elves will bring you some food, and please, do try to eat a little."
"I'll try. Now go. And have fun discussing me."
Remus forced a weak smile before going to join Draco. As they exited the chambers, Draco turned to his old professor. "Remus, what really happened?"
He watched as the werewolf took off his glasses and wiped them before finally answering. "We found self-inflicted wounds. How he ended up in the ocean, I can only guess. He told me that he was severely tortured. He still hasn't told me the exact details though."
"Does anyone else know?" Draco asked as they walked down the hallways.
"No one. And it's to stay that way until Ha- until James says otherwise. Is that clear?" Remus asked in a slightly stern tone, meeting Draco's eyes.
"Perfectly," Draco answered as they headed towards the staff meeting room, aware of the somber yet anxious mood that hung over them. How to discuss what he saw in Knockturn Alley and the search for Harry when he knew that the Boy-Who-Lived was right here in Hogwarts. He glanced over at Remus to see the werewolf's blank face and sighed as the entered the staff lounge, preparing himself for what was sure to be an emotional meeting.
Author's Notes: You know the drill – read, review, comment, criticize, etc… Next chapter should bring all sorts of surprises and reactions – can the Boy-Who-Lived manage to hide his identity at Hogwarts?