Standing awkwardly on the threshold of the floo to the Burrow, Harry took one last glance at Severus's house. He was a little nervous about going back to school, he didn't really know what was going to await him when he stepped off the train in Hogsmede but he prayed nothing negative would happen. He glanced down at the bracelet, Severus had been quiet today, he hadn't even had a good morning message and the thought was mildly disappointing even though he knew the man would be busy during the day with the final touches and staff meetings that were bound to happen before the students arrived.
The map that was tucked safely in his pocket almost pulsating with curiosity, he wanted to know where his Professor was and what he was doing just so he could know that when he arrived at the school he would be there too. He knew it was stupid but not seeing the man for a few days after they had spent a great deal of time together over the Summer break from not seeing him for half of the year prior stung. He couldn't help himself and caved, reaching into his pocket to take the map out. I solemnly swear that I am up to know good, he recited and watched as the walls and people walking about the castle appeared, his heart lurching and a smile widening across his face when he saw Severus's name in the space where his private chambers resided.
What's the matter, Harry? Why are you worried?
The message took him by surprised but he held himself before sending a prompt reply back that he could see him and that was what he had been worried about. Severus still hadn't gotten used to the fact that his younger lover was able to see where he was, Harry mused that the man probably thought he was looking at a moving picture of him rather than a bland map with ink that mapped out the castle and occupants. He was a little worried about showing Severus when they next saw each other but he had no doubt that in the future it would become very handy if he ever needed to find his Professor.
Are you with the Weasley's yet?
At Severus's blunt reminder of where he was meant to be he sighed and confessed that he hadn't left yet, whilst he received a telling off in reply he shrugged it off. It wasn't as though the man could do anything from Hogwarts so he took his time.
Let me know when you arrive, I will see you at school.
And just like that Harry knew he wasn't going to have further conversation with his lover. After this, he stepped through the floo, Ginny was there to greet him and he gave her a brief hug before seeking Ron out for a quick chat. Even though they had only seen each other a few days prior, it was good to properly catch up and they spoke about how warm Hermione's reception would be when they met her as per usual at Kings Cross.
"Mate, it will be fine. I'm sure she's had plenty of time to… you know, fester… about it." Ron trailed off and shrugged, it was clear that they were both thinking the same and whilst it was a little sobering for the brunette he wasn't going to let it get him down.
"If she wants to be immature, she can be." Harry's short reply was and Ron hesitated before agreeing.
Soon enough it was time to go, the Weasley brood, plus Harry, hustled their way towards the train station. Harry was about to step through the barrier between platform nine and ten when Molly pulled him aside and he looked at her curiously, double checking to see if Ron or Ginny had seen it to find they had already walked through.
"Now, Harry, if you wish to stay over the holidays, you are more than welcome to if you feel that Grimmauld Place is a little overbearing." She said softly to him and his features softened at the care she was offering.
"Thank you, I'll keep it in mind." He replied respectfully before waving her off and ducking through the barrier.
"What took you so long, I thought you were right behind me?" Ron said looking him over concerned.
"Your mother just offered me to stay over the holidays, come on." Harry replied, pushing importantly through some of the younger years so they could reach the train.
It was always a race each year to snag one of the few private cabins, he didn't really want others to speak to him, and he didn't really think he was ready to fall straight into old routines and habits straight away. They were lucky on this day and quickly shut the door before making themselves at home, Ron pulling out a Quidditch magazine and Harry pulling one of Severus's Potion's books out of his bag. His red headed friend looked at him suspiciously when they sat opposite each other but he shrugged him off before getting stuck into the page he had stopped on the previous night but was brought back to the present when Ron started speaking.
"So speaking of Quidditch…" He trailed off, holding up a photo of the latest school age Witch to make international headlines.
"We'll see." Harry's voice was passive and he passed it off as unimportant, when in reality, he was hoping that he could take on his old spot again.
"We need you and really badly, Harry. It was embarrassing having to lose to Slytherin in both Quidditch and house points." He sulked and Harry shook his head dismissively.
"I'll think about it." Harry finalised and went back to his book when someone opened the door then slammed it loudly making both boys flinch.
"So, Harry, I see you couldn't just – " Hermione stopped as he plonked herself down next to Ron, her eyes pouring over Harry's body and looking very surprised.
"Hello." Harry said, filling the gap and Hermione's gaze snapped up to his eyes.
"You look…" She almost seemed lost for words and Harry tried to block out the fact that Ron was switching between them looking slightly worried, he only wanted to train his eyes on their bushy haired friend so that she knew he was paying her his full attention.
"How about, 'it's good to see you both?'" Ron tried, failing to decrease the tension that was growing.
"Harry, you look a lot healthier than when I last saw you." She sighed in defeat and switched seats so she was sitting beside the brunette.
"Hence the reason for moving." Harry replied stiffly, referring to living with Severus for the remainder of the summer.
There was a long silence that stretched over the three of them, Hermione not really knowing what to say only thinking that she had been wrong in her decision to be angry with her friend for running off with their Professor. She had to admit though, every time Harry and their Potion's Professor lived together, it seemed to benefit him greatly and she was beginning to wonder why she was always so wary of the situation. She knew what they were doing was technically wrong, that they were breaking not only school rules but Ministry rules as well but when she saw the more youthful and happier expression that made green eyes glow, she had to admit that maybe they were good for each other. In the end, she sighed and put her hand on top of his, looking at him with an apologetic expression.
"Then I'm sorry for what I said to you. I truly believed that you were doing this because you wanted to, not because you actually needed to. I still don't approve, but he only keeps showing me that what he is doing helps you." She said finally and Harry nodded as Ron slouched down into the coach seat.
"Thank, Merlin for that, now are you going to tell us how your holidays were?" Ron asked in half exasperation, half humor making Hermione smile and Harry take a deep relaxing breath in.
Their conversation took them most of the way to Hogwarts until they fell into a comfortable silence, Harry got his book out again and started reading a chapter on the key aspects of creating new Potion's, it was relatively interesting and he thought to his Apprenticeship, wondering when he would go and speak to his Head of House about it.
"That's an interesting book." Hermione pointed out after a while, she was still sitting next to him and he could see her every now and then peer over at the pages he was reading through.
"Severus let me borrow it," He said straight away, then looked at both his friends, apologising before adding, "Professor Snape."
He was going to need to keep his wits about him with calling Severus by his Professor label, he would expose them both if he wasn't careful and this was the second time in a few days it had slipped out. His friends didn't really seem to mind but he felt weird saying it in front of them, so he made a point to remind himseif that he was going back to school and that Severus was first and foremost his teacher.
The rest of the train ride was uneventful, apart from a handful of people that came to speak with them, it was rather quiet. Once they stopped off at the station, Harry glanced down at his wrist before messaging to tell Severus they had arrived. His stomach was filling with butterflies as he watched the first years filing out in their blank uniforms, it was a gut wrenching feeling that he had when he thought about the fact he too would be donning his uniform for one last year. He wasn't sure why, but he wasn't looking forward to dressing up in Gryffindor robes, though it wasn't like he had a choice and soon enough he was following the other seventh years towards the carriages that would carry them up to the castle.
Harry took a moment to himself as he watched the castle getting closer, his nerves growing and anticipation of what would happen over the next few hours, who would approach him, would questions be asked? He found himself growing restless at this and he had to take a large breath to control himself, compose his emotions and discipline his mind like he had been taught through Occlumency. For the moment it seemed to help but he couldn't get over a sense of foreboding as they walked the stairs towards the entrance way. Something felt off.
Severus sat patiently, waiting for the students to make their way into the hall for their start of year feast. He had heard from Harry beforehand and from then on his eyes were trained on the large doors into the Great Hall as he attempted and hopefully succeeded in composing himself to everyone who was present. There was a new member of staff this year taking over the Defence class and he was currently sitting a seat over from Severus, Flitwick squashed between them and he glanced over at the bulky man, sneering ever so slightly at magic coming off him. Mad-Eye Moody, they called him because he lost an eye from a raid when he was working for the Ministry of Magic as an Auror, he is, quite simply put insane, and Severus wondered what had prompted the Headmaster to hire someone of his calibre, mainly because he had dabbled so fiercely in Dark magic, it was a wonder he hadn't corrupted his soul from it.
Looking back to the main doors, he sighed and ran his finger along some shallow scratches that had been placed on the arm of the chair, even though it had been only a few days there was a lot he and Harry needed to catch up on. A few days that seemed like torture when he had to crawl into his empty bed at night, he had tried to be a man about this and stop badgering on in his head like a love sick female but truth was he couldn't and on this morning he had accepted his fate with the ravenous green eyed teen that he just caught in his line of sight.
He hadn't really known what to except, that perhaps he had gone on a rampage and destroyed his house and most likely himself with cuts and scratches but the Gryffindor seemed fine, he seemed healthy and was currently smiling acutely at something his red headed pig of a friend had said as they pointed at the Slytherin's. He wanted to catch his eye, give him the nod that he was happy to see him but it seemed that the boy was too wrapped up in whatever it was that he didn't glance over to him once. Instead, the Gryffindor Head of House who was sitting at Severus's right leaned over and spoke quietly to him.
"Harry looks much better than last I saw." Then there was the knowing look and smile before they turned their attention towards the students filing in.
He wanted to reply, say something along the lines of if it weren't for me… But he didn't want to put himself on a pedestal such as that, instead he kept quiet and narrowed his eyes at the newest members of the Wizarding community, the first years. He dreaded them most among all others with their wistful expressions and excitement that clouded the judgment of the best of them, well all those except a select few, mainly from Slytherin who knew what to expect from generations of their families attending the school.
Then finally, after what seemed to be too long for his liking, Harry caught his eye, he looked worried and troubled, there was something on his mind and he frowned minutely as his eyes raked over the Gryffindor uniform and tired face. Sure he looked healthier but he looked tired, as if he hadn't slept a wink the night previous and that was something that worried Severus himself. He decided to ask, there was no harm in reaching out to the teen before the proceedings started for the evening, so placing his hand covertly atop his silver bangle he sent the boy a message in the hopes he would tell him what was wrong. Of course Severus knew there was a time and a place, as long as Harry acknowledged the fact he had received it, he could live with that for now.
Harry sighed and looked back up at his lover and Professor, he wasn't troubled as Severus had put it, more like tired and overwhelmed. He was back in his old stomping ground, back with old friends and rivals, new teachers and familiar settings, thinking that he would be able to slip back into normal motions at the start of year feast had been a simply a dream because he sat there now feeling wary of everyone he came in contact with. He knew it was stupid but he had to suck it up and act like he didn't hide one of the biggest secrets at the school, it was of course easier said than done but he hoped that he would be able to fool everyone. Obviously he wasn't able to as Severus could see straight through it and he covered his bangle to reply a half-hearted message.
Severus certainly wasn't too happy with the reply, I'm fine just tired is all, he exhaled a long breath and leaned back in the high backed chair up at the head table as he looked out across the hall. He would leave it for now, if the teen really needed him then he would expect him one night this week, other than that he was going to have to fend for himself now they were back at school.
Harry turned to face the table, he leaned on it with his elbows and rested his chin upon his hands as he stared down at the empty plate in front of him. Hermione waved her hand in front of his face as she sat in front of him but he shook his head, not wanting to go into specifics and it was just as well because the Headmaster stood and announced the welcoming to the start of year. Harry half listened, half thought about how he was going to approach his Head of House about the apprenticeship opportunities but when Dumbledore mentioned a new Defence teacher he turned his head to find a new face sitting next to their small Charms Professor.
" – They reckon he's as mad as a hatter these days." Harry only caught half of what Ron had said as he eyed the man who looked like he'd seen a few fights in his time.
"Who is he?" Harry whispered to Ron who was sitting beside him but closer to the front.
"Mad-Eye Moody, he's – "
"Professor Moody, Ron. Honestly, do you have no respect for our teachers?" Hermione scolded but Harry didn't really care, he was more interested in finding out more about their new Defence teacher.
"He's an Auror, locked away heaps of people in Azkaban," Ron started but then leaned closer as he whispered the rest, "Rumor has it he's the one who locked up Sirius."
Harry swallowed a lump, so this man put away my Godfather, I wonder what really happened to him, he thought as he narrowed his eyes on the man. He was bulky and mean looking, the glass eye he sported darted around the room and whilst it freaked him out a little he tried not to let it get to him. This man looked as though he had had experience and lots of it, so for him to be their Defence Professor he was certainly looking forward to seeing what they would be learning. No doubt Occlumency would be interesting with him, and he hoped that unlike in previous years, this man didn't go insane with his teaching methods.
" – Let's get the sorting under way, Professor McGonagall? If you would." Harry watched as the Headmaster passed the control over to their Head of House and the sorting ceremony began.
The rest of the feast was a blur as Harry went through the motions of seeing friends again that he hadn't seen in a while and soon enough he was trudging up the many stairs to the Gryffindor common room. The first years were coming through a few minutes later and Harry decided to take himself off to bed, he wanted to get up early and go for a run before everyone was up and before class started. So waving Hermione and Ron off he made his way upstairs and tucked himself into bed.
"I'm concerned." Hermione huffed and turned to Ron as well as catching Ginny's attention.
"'Mione, he's fine. Just give him a few days to settle in." Ron soothed and then looked up to see Seamus and Dean starting up a game of chess, he couldn't resist and stood up, "Look, if you're really concerned by the end of tomorrow then talk to him, otherwise just let him be." He continued and then walked off.
"Harry looks good, doesn't he? Perhaps being by himself worked out?" Ginny asked as she followed Hermione's gaze up the stairs.
"You know, Ginny, I wish I could believe that but I don't. He wasn't by himself over the break, he was being looked after and I – "
"Oh? By who? I thought he was staying and Grimmauld by himself?" Hermione froze, she immediately realised her mistake and looked at Ginny solemnly thinking of something vague to say before standing to make a hasty exit.
Severus woke the next morning to the sound of his portrait yelling through the door at him, he didn't want to have woken so early in the morning, it wasn't even his usual time and he grumbled before wrenching the door open. He huffed at his portrait but was quickly directed to the door as he heard light scratching coming from the other side, he knew what, well rather who it was and reaching round the back of his bedroom door donned a black gown to wrap around his bare torso.
Pushing the door open ajar he saw grey fur creeping past him and he smiled gently, shutting the door and going straight back to his bedroom where he hoped Harry would follow him. He was happy to note that he was in fact followed and as he climbed into bed Jade transformed into Harry, following suit and slipping under the covers.
Immediately, Harry lunged at him, placing kisses along his jaw and neck, making his way towards his lips. Hands were roaming his naked torso and ran up to comb through his hair before he felt the slender body mount him and push his own body further into the bed. These actions took him mildly by surprise but he wasn't about to stop them, they both needed this as much as they both knew they shouldn't be doing it, however it was early in the morning, early enough for there not to be any interruptions and for easy getaways. Severus felt his blood quickening through his veins when a hardness was pushed into his flaccid cock, but with this contact it didn't stay like that for long and soon enough he was responding in slow grinding of hips.
He was so happy to have this weight, not that it was crushing, on top of him. He was reminded of the holidays and the time they were able to spend together so he wasted no time in stripping his Gryffindor of what little clothing he had and flipping them over so he was the one in control. He nipped the youthful neck as he heard Harry's grunt of surprise and curled his fingers around the globes of the teen's backside, spreading them apart and pulling their bodies close. His finger ghosted over the puckered hole and he dared to think they would have time to indulge in a quick reunion but thought better of it when he remembered it was the first day of the school term.
Instead, he flopped himself half off Harry, leaning on the bed so he could gain access to their members that looked as though they needed some attention. His younger lover made a gasping sound, nuzzling his nose in the crook of Severus's neck, as his expert fingers wrapped around his length and played with the tip. Harry mewled in response before doing the same, the feeling of velvet aroused skin made his own blood pump faster through his body and his heart started fluttering when he realised he'd missed this over the last few days.
Harry felt his orgasm approaching within no time and he tensed his muscles, his pumps on Severus's cock stopping and he gripped onto the sheets below him, his eyes squeezing shut when it finally ruptured. The evidence of his release lay cooling on his stomach as he felt the bed continue to move but he felt like a dead weight as he found lips on his as the man kissed him through his own completion. Of course the Gryffindor always felt guilty when he climaxed first, he never really did anything after the pleasure was felt from his head to his toes but Severus never said anything about it and continued on until he found his own release.
"Sinful, as always my little minx," Severus purred, nuzzling into Harry's neck and taking a deep breath of his unique scent, "Not to mention naughty."
"Thought you might have missed me." Harry sighed, his head relaxing into the pillow beneath his head.
"Hmm, I did however the weekend would have been just as satisfying. What brings you here this morning, very early I might add." Severus whispered, moving so he could look over to his clock.
"I was heading out for a run, thought I might come and see you on the way." The Gryffindor replied, moving so he could cuddle into his Professor's side, his energy collecting slightly.
"Dangerous, but thank you. What has prompted this sudden exercise may I ask?"
"Quidditch. If they have me back I need to be at the top of my game." At this Harry sat up with the intention of getting up and as he did he saw the look on his lovers face making him halt his movements, frowning slightly, "What's wrong?"
Severus sat up as well this time and looked at the younger Wizard with a solemn expression, how was he supposed to tell him he wouldn't be able to do Quidditch as well as his apprenticeship? Did he tell him now or wait for the Gryffindor Head of House to tell him to break the news. It would be best to tell him now, that way there wouldn't be any casuse for doubt between them, he knew it wasn't going to be pleasant.
"You cannot do an apprenticeship and play Quidditch." The man winced when he saw the pained expression of his younger lovers face and he immediately felt terrible.
"What do you mean? Of course I will be able to, I mean it's not – "
"Please listen to me, Professor McGonagall will say the same and – "
"You just don't want me to do it do you? Quidditch, I mean. Just because you don't like the sport." Harry huffed and turned away to pull on his shorts and tee.
"Merlin, Harry, there's no need to go off on a huff about it." However, Severus's words fell on deaf ears as Harry stalked from the room, slamming the portrait door in the process as he left the man's quarters.
As the teen ran the corridors as a warm up he felt as a coil would as it was winding up, his orgasm forgotten about as the frustration of his Professor's words echoed around his head. Glancing down at his wrist there was a plead from Severus for him to come back but he was too wound up and with the anger coursing through him and he powered off towards the main doors.
Running down towards the Black Lake he thought about the situation, of course he would be able to fit Quidditch in, he would be doing one less class than everyone else and spending some time in the afternoons with his Potion's Professor as they worked through his apprenticeship no doubt. He was going to be able to right? He growled, just when he thought everything would be alright it ended up turning to custard and he sped up as he reached the lake, taking a turn towards the forest so he could lose himself for a few moments before class started.
When he made it back to the castle, he didn't stop until he was turning the taps on for his shower, because of his early start people were only starting to rise now so he knew he would be able to slip into the Great Hall pretty well anonymously before heading to his first class. That was of course if the seventh years didn't have Potion's first, he didn't know what he would do if Hermione did and he told her he wasn't going to be in class with her. A shiver ran down his spine, if anyone was going to have an issue with him taking an extra step higher than the rest, it was going to be her.
Once he had finished his shower, clothed and headed down to the common room he spotted the girls as they made their way to breakfast so he tagged along with them when he saw Ron running up behind him. Making small talk they were in the hall in no time and that's when Harry felt the butterflies in his stomach, the anger from earlier gone and he felt foolish for his anger towards his older lover. The man was still at breakfast, it was nearly the only day where the late risers would see their Potion's Professor at breakfast so that he could hand out the Slytherin timetables, much like their Transfiguration Professor was at this stage and she walked up to them, handing out pieces of parchment. However when she got to Harry, she spoke directly to him.
"Mr. Potter, I have a free moment after class today should you wish to speak." She said and Harry nodded his agreement before she spotted some other students and walked off.
"What does she need to see you about?" Hermione inquired, though he wasn't surprised.
"Just some of my classes for this year, I'll know more once I've seen her." It wasn't completely a lie, but it wasn't completely the truth, however she nodded and they were able to move on without incident.
When everyone was scouring over their timetables, Harry took the moment to glance up at the black sillouhette movin up and down the Slytherin table. He felt terrible, the first day back and he knew the last thing Severus wanted was to have a fight, he didn't need that kind of stress on the first day, especially when he heard Ginny moaning that she had Potion's first thing. Harry glanced down at his own parchment and found that he had Charms first, it wasn't the worst thing in the world and he tucked into some breakfast with his eyes scanning over the rest of his timetable. It was odd not seeing Potion's listed down and he had a few blank spots that were headed, study, but he knew that these would be taken up if he chose and was accepted to do the Apprenticeship. Having thought about it non-stop for the last couple of weeks, he still wasn't completely sold on the idea, it was mainly the fact that he was required to teach. He didn't find the first years threatening, but he wasn't entirely comfortable with the idea. Perhaps he would let me just do some research? He doubted that it would work out that way, the man had been pretty insistant.
"Earth to, Harry?" Hermione nudged him and he locked eyes with her with a questioning raise of an eyebrow.
"My apologies, you were saying?"
"We're leaving, coming?" She asked, standing.
Nodding he stood with the others and made their way out of the hall but not without taking a glance over his shoulder to see Severus walking up the length of the hall towards them, not once making eye contact with him but it was clear he knew there were eyes on him. It made the Gryffindor sigh in deafeat, he was reckless and foolish for being so hot headed this morning, he felt guilty and desperately wanted to make it up to him. There was an alarming thought that suddenly ran through his head at that point and he found himself thinking, what if he doesn't want to follow through with the arrangement? Sighing again he followed his friends from behind towards their first class and as he did, he wanted to run back to the Great Hall and see his lover.